OneDnD WotC On One D&D Playtest Survey Results: Nearly Everything Scored 80%+!

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In a 40-minute video, WotC's Jeremy Crawford discussed the survey feedback to the 'Character Origins' playtest document. Over 40,000 engaged with the survey, and 39,000 completed it. I've summarised the content of the video below.

High Scorers
  • The highest scoring thing with almost 90% was getting a first level feat in your background. This is an example of an experimental thing -- like advantage and disadvantage in the original 5E playtests.
  • Almost everything also scored 80%+.
About The Scoring System
  • 70% or higher is their passing grade. In the 70s is a thumbs up but tinkering need. 80% means the community wants exactly that and WotC treads carefully not to change it too much.
  • In the 60s it's salvageable but it really needs reworking. Below 60% means that there's a good chance they'll drop it, and in the 40s or below it's gone. Nothing was in the 50s or below.
Low Scorers

Only 3 things dipped into the 60s --
  • the d20 Test rule in the Rules Glossary (experimental, no surprise)
  • the ardling
  • the dragonborn
The next UA had a different version of the d20 Test rule, and they expect a very different score when those survey resuts come in.

It was surprising that the dragonborn scored lower than the ardling. The next UA will include new versions of both. The main complaints were:
  • the dragonborn's breath weapon, and confusion between the relationship between that dragonborn and the one in Fizban's Treasury of Dragons.
  • the ardling was trying to do too much (aasimar-like and beast-person).
The ardling does not replace the aasimar. The next version will have a clearer identity.

Everything else scored in the 70s or 80s.

Some more scores:
  • new human 83%
  • dwarf, orc, tiefling, elf tied at 80-81%
  • gnome, halfling tied at 78%
Future installments of Unearthed Arcana
  • The next one will have new ardling and dragonborn, a surprise 'guest', and a new cleric. It will be a shorter document than the previous ones, and the one after that is bigger again. Various class groups.
  • Warrior group digs into something teased in a previous UA sidebar -- new weapon options for certain types of characters. Whole new ways to use weapons.
  • New rules on managing your character's home base. A new subsystem. Create bases with NPCs connected with them, implementing downtime rules. They're calling it the "Bastion System".
  • There will be a total of 48 subclasses in the playtest process.
  • New encounter building rules, monster customization options.
  • New versions of things which appear in the playtest after feedback.
Other Notes
  • Playtests are a version of something with the assumption that if something isn't in the playtest, it's still in the game (eg eldritch blast has not been removed from the game). The mage Unearthed Arcana will feature that.
  • Use an object and other actions are still as defined in the current Player's Handbook. The playtest material is stuff that has changed.
  • Thief subclass's cunning action does not interact with use an object; this is intentional. Removed because the original version is a 'Mother may I?" mechanic - something that only works if the DM cooperates with you. In general mechanics which require DM permission are unsatisfying. The use an object action might go away, but that decision will be a made via the playtest process.
  • The ranger's 1st-level features also relied too heavily on DM buy-in, also wild magic will be addressed.
  • If you have a class feature you should be able to use it in the way you expect.
  • If something is removed from the game, they will say so.
  • Great Weapon Fighting and Sharpshooter were changed because the penalty to the attack roll was not big enough to justify the damage bonus, plus they want warrior classes to be able to rely on their class features (including new weapon options) for main damage output. They don't want any feats to feel mandatory to deal satisfying damage. Feats which are 'must haves' violate their design goals.
  • Light Weapon property amped up by removing the bonus action requirement because requiring light weapon users to use their bonus action meant there were a lot of bad combinations with features and spells which require bonus actions. It felt like a tax on light weapon use.
  • Class spell lists are still an open question. Focus on getting used to the three big spell lists. Feedback was that it would be nice to still have a class list to summarize what can be picked from the 'master lists'. For the bard that would be useful, for the cleric and wizard not necessary as they can choose from the whole divine or arcane list.
The playtest process will continue for a year.

 
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Russ Morrissey

Russ Morrissey


darjr

I crit!
Note about that thing, they are trying to thread the needle but they say anything with 70% plus positive response means they are keeping it.

Edit: Also note the new playtest will be out Dec 1st

 
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Xamnam

Loves Your Favorite Game
Oh man, did they read that one thread here?

People have have rightly noticed that the thief subclass in the previous UA doesn't as a part of their cunning action enhancement interact with the use an object action anymore. That's intentional, that wasn't an accidental omission. We removed it from that feature because in the 2014 version of the feature it fell into an area of mechanics that we sometimes refer to as mother may I mechanics, and what we mean by that is something that is on your character sheet that really only works if the DM cooperates with you in its execution. This is as opposed to most of the features that characters have where you can reliably just use it and it does what it says on the description of the feature. We have found that in general those sorts of mechanics that kind of require DM permission or buy-in to function properly often end up being unsatisfying or they end up slowing down the game-

They name drop the Wild Magic Sorc as another prominent example they're examining.
 


Scribe

Legend
It was surprising that the dragonborn scored lower than the ardling. The next UA will include new versions of both. The main complaints were:

-- the dragonborn's breath weapon, and confusion between the relationship between that dragonborn and the one in Fizban's Treasury of Dragons.

I'm...surprised at their surprise in this regard. Why release something (Fizbans) and then go 3 steps backwards. I'd have to go look at the UA again but if I remember right, the proposed Dragonborn was plainly inferior, in every way, to the Fizbans version.
 



DND_Reborn

The High Aldwin
I'm not surprised most things score this high.

People who object to the changes aren't likely to playtest it or bother with filling out any surveys about it. People who like the changes will playtest it and then take the survey expressing how much they like it.

Sort of a self-fulfilling prophecy. 🤷‍♂️
 

Alphastream

Adventurer
The survey didn't actually ask us whether we wanted feats at first level.

This is something that really troubles me with these surveys. They ask us to rate specifics (each feat, each background), but they aren't asking the larger questions. I may very well rate a feat full stars, and I may find a background to be fine. That doesn't mean I like the idea of a background granting a level 1 feat. WotC is taking specific ratings and painting an incorrect picture at the broad level with them.
 

Xamnam

Loves Your Favorite Game
While obviously it's all dependent on execution, taking them at face value, I continued to be reassured by the philosophical guidelines they're espousing during these interviews, and if they deliver on them I think I'll greatly enjoy most of the changes.

I mean, aside from the Long Rest one.
 

The big difference between this and the Next playtest is that last time they issued adventures to try with the rules and in some cases pregens. I wonder how many voters actually tried the rules.
I know from my own playgroup that some would just vote for a anyth that made their characters stronger
 


The big difference between this and the Next playtest is that last time they issued adventures to try with the rules and in some cases pregens. I wonder how many voters actually tried the rules.
I know from my own playgroup that some would just vote for a anyth that made their characters stronger
 

Xamnam

Loves Your Favorite Game
The big difference between this and the Next playtest is that last time they issued adventures to try with the rules and in some cases pregens. I wonder how many voters actually tried the rules.
Something they do mention is that they look at feedback separately from people who just read the document, and people who actually took it to a table and tested it. Both are valuable to them.
 

Oofta

Legend
I'm...surprised at their surprise in this regard. Why release something (Fizbans) and then go 3 steps backwards. I'd have to go look at the UA again but if I remember right, the proposed Dragonborn was plainly inferior, in every way, to the Fizbans version.
They stated that the intent is that you can still use Fizban's version after the 2024 release. I don't have Fizban's so I can't provide any more insight. 🤷‍♂️
 

Scribe

Legend
They stated that the intent is that you can still use Fizban's version after the 2024 release. I don't have Fizban's so I can't provide any more insight. 🤷‍♂️

Right, no books (other than Volos/MToF) have been or likely (assumption) are being removed, but it still is a weird look to have already released a clearly superior version, and they try and drum up interest with a lesser design.
 

overgeeked

B/X Known World
I'm not surprised most things score this high.

People who object to the changes aren't likely to playtest it or bother with filling out any surveys about it. People who like the changes will playtest it and then take the survey expressing how much they like it.

Sort of a self-fulfilling prophecy. 🤷‍♂️
And there are at least 10 players to every one DM. Players will always upvote power creep. So UAs with power creep and surveys asking what people think will get overwhelmingly positive response.

Literally a self-fulfilling prophecy.

Like "everyone gets a free feat at 1st level" has 90+% approval. Gee...imagine that. So shock. Much surprise.
 


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