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D&D General What elements does D&D need to keep?

Which of the following elements should D&D keep in future editions?

  • Using multiple types of dice

    Votes: 110 84.6%
  • Ability scores (Str, Dex, Con, Int, Wis, Cha)

    Votes: 115 88.5%
  • Distinct character races/lineages

    Votes: 97 74.6%
  • Distinct character classes

    Votes: 124 95.4%
  • Alignment

    Votes: 45 34.6%
  • Backgrounds

    Votes: 49 37.7%
  • Multiclassing

    Votes: 59 45.4%
  • Feats

    Votes: 55 42.3%
  • Proficiencies

    Votes: 59 45.4%
  • Levels

    Votes: 121 93.1%
  • Experience points

    Votes: 56 43.1%
  • Hit points

    Votes: 113 86.9%
  • Hit dice

    Votes: 52 40.0%
  • Armor Class

    Votes: 104 80.0%
  • Lists of specific equipment

    Votes: 59 45.4%
  • Saving throws

    Votes: 100 76.9%
  • Surprise

    Votes: 40 30.8%
  • Initiative

    Votes: 87 66.9%
  • Damage types

    Votes: 63 48.5%
  • Lists of specific spells

    Votes: 91 70.0%
  • Conditions

    Votes: 57 43.8%
  • Deities

    Votes: 39 30.0%
  • Great Wheel cosmology

    Votes: 26 20.0%
  • World Axis cosmology

    Votes: 11 8.5%
  • Creature types

    Votes: 57 43.8%
  • Challenge ratings

    Votes: 26 20.0%
  • Lists of specific magic items

    Votes: 75 57.7%
  • Advantage/disadvantage

    Votes: 64 49.2%
  • Other (please specify)

    Votes: 4 3.1%

  • Total voters
    130
  • Poll closed .

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Uta-napishti

Explorer
I'm not sure I follow, but I dont think 'enraging' folks = 'on to something'.
I should have phrased it "hit a nerve" not "on to something". The "I would never play this game, and I would encourage everyone I know to boycott it." reaction and supporting likes was a bit surprising to me, and I'm wondering who/what I triggered? Wasn't expecting that level of vehemence in a rules reform discussion, but maybe that was a bit naive?
 


cbwjm

Hero
I think D&D could get by with 3 Character Classes, Mystic, Martial and Expert being focused on Magic, Fighting and Skills respectively. Or INT/WIS, STR/CON, and DEX,CHA more loosely. Combined concepts, half casters, holy warriors, etc would be all just created by Multiclassing a level or two to pick up your artificer tech, or your magical smites for instance. Let's call it "Low Class D&D". I also think spell slots should definitely be replaced with more flexible spell points (simply 1 per spell level, not the WoTC spell points tables), and spell preparation should ultimately be replaced by your familiarity with the spell that would set a DC for a Spellcasting check.
I'd probably ditch expert and make that more to do with backgrounds/archetypes (something with more weight than current backgrounds). Instead I'd go with magical and martial and maybe a half magical/half martial so that you can have a primary class that is half and half without requiring multiclassing.
 

Remathilis

Legend
I'd probably ditch expert and make that more to do with backgrounds/archetypes (something with more weight than current backgrounds). Instead I'd go with magical and martial and maybe a half magical/half martial so that you can have a primary class that is half and half without requiring multiclassing.
At that point are you really that far from assigning everything a point value and giving a pool of character points Mutants & Masterminds style?

Everytime someone suggests cutting back on some of the classes, we eventually get reduced to the Classic Four (Fighter, Cleric, Wizard and Rogue), then to the Generic Three (Warrior, Expert, Spellcaster), then the Basic Two (Martial and Magical) and then you're at Point Buy. So if you're going to pick and choose classes based on some generic usage criteria, cut the middle men and go M&M Point Buy.
 

cbwjm

Hero
At that point are you really that far from assigning everything a point value and giving a pool of character points Mutants & Masterminds style?

Everytime someone suggests cutting back on some of the classes, we eventually get reduced to the Classic Four (Fighter, Cleric, Wizard and Rogue), then to the Generic Three (Warrior, Expert, Spellcaster), then the Basic Two (Martial and Magical) and then you're at Point Buy. So if you're going to pick and choose classes based on some generic usage criteria, cut the middle men and go M&M Point Buy.
If M&M is the way you want to go then that's fine, but I think a system with these 3 classes would work well. The M&M system also feels quite different with its effects and powers, it moves too far away from DnD to feel like it but I feel a system with 3 classes could still capture a large part of the feel of DnD, at least for me.
 

Uta-napishti

Explorer
At that point are you really that far from assigning everything a point value and giving a pool of character points Mutants & Masterminds style?

Everytime someone suggests cutting back on some of the classes, we eventually get reduced to the Classic Four (Fighter, Cleric, Wizard and Rogue), then to the Generic Three (Warrior, Expert, Spellcaster), then the Basic Two (Martial and Magical) and then you're at Point Buy. So if you're going to pick and choose classes based on some generic usage criteria, cut the middle men and go M&M Point Buy.
I dunno, I think leveling is fun, and three classes that you are expected to multiclass gives you a nice simple choice at every level, while allowing mix and match of abilities within those classes (skills for expert, fighting styles and manuvers for martial, and spells for mystic) in order to work on almost any archetype.
 



DEFCON 1

Legend
Nah; D&D has major nostalgia value, and it's the RPG that everyone has heard of. It'd be more shocking if a different system had become as namebranded as D&D did.
I didn't really mean that it was a miracle that it was D&D over another RPG that became huge... it was that D&D has become as big as it has right now when there's all this other media and entertainment available right now for people to engage with.

The pool of entertainment options (especially gaming) was much shallower back in '85. So D&D blasting into orbit like it did back then I think was an easier accomplishment (especially considering it was essentially new). But now 35 years later, RPGs (and D&D in particular) have just so many other things up against it vying for people's attention that it's pretty amazing that it not only has made the resurgence it has... but that it's arguably bigger now than it's ever been. That was really my point.
 

Minigiant

Legend
I believe it is a core aspect of D&D.

D&D is a class based game where you increase level in classes and escalate through official or unofficial tiers of play.

When it come to classes, I agree with @squibbles. There are some generic band broad classes (fighters, wizards, rogues). And there are some special and narrow classes that display some key D&D tropes (barbarians, rangers, paladins, warlocks)

I don't think you can start an edition of D&D without at least 8 classes, 20 levels, and 3 tiers of play anymore. It's the minimum to feel D&Dish.
 

Emerikol

Adventurer
Well, there's almost no practical way anything could have that sort of market penetration these days compared to 1985, because just like film and tv... there's just so much stuff out there. The market is way too wide for anything to rise as high as AD&D could in the mid 80s. But heck, when you think about it... with the number of RPGs that have come out and been released and played and promoted over the last couple decades, the fact that 5E actually has gotten as big as it has is a miracle in itself. This kind of massive resurgence after a long fallow period is not usual in any way.
Oh I agree with video games especially it would be nigh impossible. And I think D&D has been pretty healthy since 3e. Even 4e sold pretty good. Yes it got a lot of backlash but it wasn't a loser sales wise. I think 5e has done really well though and gone up even further. My point was we should be happy with that because we won't get back to 1e which was massive market penetration.
 

Faolyn

Hero
I didn't really mean that it was a miracle that it was D&D over another RPG that became huge... it was that D&D has become as big as it has right now when there's all this other media and entertainment available right now for people to engage with.
Like I said: nostalgia value. Which lead to shows like Stranger Things (which I still haven't seen). And plus Critical Role being as big a hit as it is, and there are lots of celebrities who are quite open about playing it. And Starter Sets in stores like Target. All of these things brought it to the attention of new players.
 

Lanefan

Victoria Rules
I believe it is a core aspect of D&D.

D&D is a class based game where you increase level in classes and escalate through official or unofficial tiers of play.

When it come to classes, I agree with @squibbles. There are some generic band broad classes (fighters, wizards, rogues). And there are some special and narrow classes that display some key D&D tropes (barbarians, rangers, paladins, warlocks)

I don't think you can start an edition of D&D without at least 8 classes, 20 levels, and 3 tiers of play anymore. It's the minimum to feel D&Dish.
Agreed on classes and levels (though there shouldn't be a capstone level, leave it open-ended).

Disagree about tiers. They're not necessary* and IMO don't add anything to the D&D-ishness of anything.

* - until-unless levels as we know them are abandoned and what are now tiers become the new levels...
 

Faolyn

Hero
Agreed on classes and levels (though there shouldn't be a capstone level, leave it open-ended).
That would require a revamp of the XP system, or a complete change to milestone-based leveling-up. Both of which would be fine by me; my table only does milestone leveling now. Maybe something like the way Pathfinder 2e does it?
 

Lanefan

Victoria Rules
That would require a revamp of the XP system, or a complete change to milestone-based leveling-up.
Why?

All it might take is a re-work of the advancement table and-or expanding it to levels above the current capstone, which anyone could do in well under half an hour.
Both of which would be fine by me; my table only does milestone leveling now. Maybe something like the way Pathfinder 2e does it?
I haven't looked at PF2, how does it handle this?
 

Faolyn

Hero
If there's no endcap for levels, then you have to keep coming up with new XP totals for every level from 1 to infinity--because there will be some table that manages to get their PCs up to 1,000th level.

I haven't looked at PF2, how does it handle this?
IIRC, it costs 1,000 XP to go up a level, and your total resets to 0 when you level up. The XP you get from dealing with threats depends on your level vs. the CR, like in D&D3x.
 

Minigiant

Legend
Dsagree about tiers. They're not necessary* and IMO don't add anything to the D&D-ishness of anything.
The tiers matter.

Tiers tell you that your wizard is still a chump because he isn't high enough to cast fireball.

Tiers tell you the enemy mage is scary because the fireball is not even one of her top attack spells.

In D&D you just don't advance to advance toward a new way of play. Zero to Hero to Superhero. The campaign might end before your character gets there though.
 

Greg Benage

Adventurer
The tiers matter.

Tiers tell you that your wizard is still a chump because he isn't high enough to cast fireball.

Tiers tell you the enemy mage is scary because the fireball is not even one of her top attack spells.

In D&D you just don't advance to advance toward a new way of play. Zero to Hero to Superhero. The campaign might end before your character gets there though.

To me, you've just described why levels matter. You've yet to explain why tiers matter.

They used to matter (at least in theory): Core gameplay changed (or was intended to change) when you reached "name level." I can't see that tiers do anything today, unless I'm misunderstanding what you mean by tiers.
 

Minigiant

Legend
To me, you've just described why levels matter. You've yet to explain why tiers matter.

They used to matter (at least in theory): Core gameplay changed (or was intended to change) when you reached "name level." I can't see that tiers do anything today, unless I'm misunderstanding what you mean by tiers.

I think people are caught up on the name "tiers" and not what they represent. I think tiers are vital to the D&D feel, whether official or unofficial. Tiers are part of D&D whether they are explicitly named or not.

In D&D, a level 1 fighter, a level 6 fighter, and a level 11 fighter have different experiences, obstacles, and challenges. It's more that the numbers going up. Some options are unlocked. Some challenges are trivialized.

You can have a level system where the experience doesn't change as you level. Many video game and some tabletop RPGs work that way. Once you level up and unlock your classes basics, the game doesn't change.

But in D&D, your 5th level fighter is in the heroic tier and isn;t scare ofa randomorc anymore unless already wounded. Your druid of Tier 3 doesn't drown. Drowning is for level 1 druids. The game changes as you level.
 

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