D&D (2024) WotC On One D&D Playtest Survey Results: Nearly Everything Scored 80%+!

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...

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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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overgeeked

B/X Known World
What have they showed to be dishonest about yet with this "edition change"?
When they said it would be backwards compatible then rolled out a bunch of stuff that wasn’t backwards compatible in the playtest.
And WotC isn't a mega-corp, it's a subsidiary of one. The mega-corp isn't making OneD&D, a smaller company that's a part of it is.
That’s pointless hair splitting.
 

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Vaalingrade

Legend
While I personally adore feats, I hope they provide a nice simple default option for non-feat folks. There's really no reason not to. The way it was discussed made it sound like an ad for future feats, but that's just now how reality works.
I want to minimize any chances I ever land at a table that doesn't allow feats or that future design ever thinks to exclude them again.
 

Levistus's_Leviathan

5e Freelancer
I generally dislike feats, but the way they are presented in the two first packets look kinda interesting. They are fun additions instead of ''must-haves'', ''builds defining'' or ''patches''.

In any case, if there's too many feats to choose or they become too fiddly, I'll just remove them and let the players take the +2 ASI feat by default.
It seems like dividing the feats into different levels will help with the normal problem of being drowned in options that happens in base 5e. I'm already a fan of feats, and I think that the new proposed system for them is easily better than the 2014 version.
 


Levistus's_Leviathan

5e Freelancer
When they said it would be backwards compatible then rolled out a bunch of stuff that wasn’t backwards compatible in the playtest.
It is backwards compatible. You can play a 2014 PHB character with a OneD&D rules. I've done it. It works. They're compatible. The fact that you disagree with their definition of "backwards compatibility" doesn't mean that they're being dishonest. They even said what they mean by "backwards compatible" in one of the playtest documents.
That’s pointless hair splitting.
No, it's an important distinction. The goals of the megacorporation aren't necessarily 100% aligned with the goals of its subsidiary.

They've proven before that they care about more than just profit. Otherwise, they would leave books alone after they publish them and not waste time with errata. The existence of errata proves that they have motivations beyond just pure profits.
 

EzekielRaiden

Follower of the Way
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.
As I have repeatedly said: they use awful survey design and push polls, not actually effective survey gathering. And, as noted, they don't seem to distinguish between "controversial but still good," "vocal minority hates it but most players love it," and "actually not very popular but a vocal minority loves it."

This thing you complain about here has been a problem since the D&D Next playtest. Nothing has changed about this. It just happened to actually affect something you care about this time.
 

Minigiant

Legend
Supporter
And, as noted, they don't seem to distinguish between "controversial but still good," "vocal minority hates it but most players love it," and "actually not very popular but a vocal minority loves it."
I think they can tell "actually not very popular but a vocal minority loves it." as it wont get to 60%. That's why aardlings are staying. And the comments and video saying "they hate it" turned out to be the minority.

But "controversial but still good" and "vocal minority hates it but most players love it," will both give you 70%. So then they'd have to dig into the comments and hope to find a trend.
 

Reynard

Legend
I still say doing it piecemeal is an ineffective method of testing. D&D has A LOT of moving parts and how they interact is far more important than how any individual part operates in isolation. Putting out a singular big playtest packet and asking people to go hog wild is a much better way to actually figure out whether the rules work. If that's the intent. Which this probably isn't.
 

Like I said in an earlier thread:


I maintain that the final draft is already written, and that these "survey results" are more about generating buzz and excitement than actually getting feedback. It's a great marketing strategy. (Much better than the "we fixed your game for you, you're welcome" approach they used back in 2008.)

So meh, I'm not surprised that they announced a high-but-plausible result because that is going to generate the strongest favorable reaction. I think they are figuring out how many people still need convincing....not how many changes still need to be made.

Or maybe I'm just really jaded in my old age.
It's jaded that's the answer.
 

Charlaquin

Goblin Queen (She/Her/Hers)
So was the attempt to make critical hits (something players are already confused by) both much more complicated while at the same time a fraction as important on the survey? I know it disappeared from the subsequent playtest, and I just can't imagine that it won over a majority of survey respondents.

It was the thing that made me question both the goals and the common sense of the design team, and not consider this process worth my time. I don't even particularly care about critical hits, I just think they should have a simpler rule whether its "max damage", "double all damage", no longer being a thing, or, barring any of those improvements, just keeping the same relatively simple formulation. But every time I thought about completing the survey I just thought "do I really want to spend 40 minutes writing thoughtful comments that will probably never get read anyway to people who thought that absurd of a rule change was worth an audition".
Pretty sure the changes to critical hits was part of the “d20 test rules” that were the lowest-scoring part of the packet. They also said in the video that they were fully expecting it to get a low rating: it was always experimental, and they’ve been clear about that from day 1.
 

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