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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tetrasodium

Legend
Supporter
Epic
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.
This is a good point. I don't recall if the survey asked what percentage we GM or if we GM at all but I'd love to hear if there are areas with statistically significant differences between survey submissions from mostly gm & those from mostly/entirely player survey takers. A difference of that sort would be statistically significant on its own.
 

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Oofta

Legend
The people who are most likely to engage with the survey are already 5e fans. The new revision is changing very little. Ergo, the 5e fans are happy that few meaningful changes are being proposed.
I'm a little shocked that the entirety of the playtest packets don't have a 96% approval rate.
I want real change to the game, but what can I do besides take a survey and respond "scrap most of this and do something new, or just reprint the 2014 version with a new commemorative cover."

Why would they make major changes to the most popular TTRPG ever released? It's too bad that it doesn't work for you, but it seems to work for a while lot of folks. It works for me and my players. It works for my Thursday group I play in.

I don't agree with everything they're playtesting. But I read the documents, took the survey, made my comments. Maybe those comments will have an impact, maybe they won't. But endless reprtrtive complaints on a random forum are not going to change anything.

How many times have we questioned these same complaints only to be told "if we don't voice our concerns nothing will change"? Then when people actually have a chance to directly communicate with the developers, instead of filling out the survey and commenting people still just continue the same complaints here while ignoring survey.

The game is written to appeal to a large audience. It's not a boutique RPG designed specifically for you, or me for that matter. I accepted long ago that it's not all about me and when the 2024 edition comes out, I'll either adopt it or stick with the current ruleset. What I won't do is complain endlessly about how D&D used to be cool before they went lamestream because they don't cater to me personally.

P.S. this turned into a bit of a rant not really aimed at anyone in particular. I just get tired of people trashing a game I really enjoy playing on a thread about modifications to a game I'm cautiously optimistic about.
 

Charlaquin

Goblin Queen (She/Her/Hers)
I presume the name 'Ardling' was meant to evoke a minor Guardinal. 'Guardling' seems a little odd for a race name (sounding more like an occupation), so they just condensed it.

If they decide to go fully Guardinal-like in the next packet, it might make the name seem a little more appra po.
I figured it came from the Gaelic word for high, just as the tief in tiefling comes from the German word for low.

Either way, the name makes less sense if they lean into the anthro angle more than the celestial angle, as they suggested they would do in the video. I liked Hengeyokai from 4e as an anthro race, but I wonder if they’d avoid that name nowadays.
 


JEB

Legend
First impressions matter. Just like how I was turned off by RIFTS because my first game I was a regular dude with a whopping 1d4 MDC weapon and thought I was pretty cool. Only to meet the rest of the party. Juicers, glitter boys, etc.
I feel your pain. First time I tried to play Rifts, I made a rogue scholar PC, and the GM was visibly disappointed in my choice. (Shockingly, it didn't get past one session.)
 

Charlaquin

Goblin Queen (She/Her/Hers)
That's a strange attitude. As far as your meme goes, no one in real life with gigantism would count as size large in the current game, not even Andre. (They'd have powerful build, which orcs already get). They're just at the high end of medium.
I agree with you, but I think the argument is supposed to be, if orcs have Powerful Build at their average size, gigantism in an orc could reasonably result in a Large sized character.
 

FrogReaver

As long as i get to be the frog
Why would they make major changes to the most popular TTRPG ever released? It's too bad that it doesn't work for you, but it seems to work for a while lot of folks. It works for me and my players. It works for my Thursday group I play in.

I don't agree with everything they're playtesting. But I read the documents, took the survey, made my comments. Maybe those comments will have an impact, maybe they won't. But endless reprtrtive complaints on a random forum are not going to change anything.
To summarize... "Hush because your comments here won't change anything"

How many times have we questioned these same complaints only to be told "if we don't voice our concerns nothing will change"? Then when people actually have a chance to directly communicate with the developers, instead of filling out the survey and commenting people still just continue the same complaints here while ignoring survey.
IMO. Some people desire the conversation. The survey just doesn't check that box. *And if it was just a 5-10 minute survey I might change my position, but like past D&D surveys I suspect it's going to take 30mins to an hour to complete...
 

Umbran

Mod Squad
Staff member
Supporter
Indeed. I don't think anyone can question Jeremey's love of the game. Regardless of the corporate board and their focus on profit, Jeremy is lead for D&D. And people taking shots at his credibility or motivations because he didn't sign off on a design feature they wanted is a red flag to me of what kind of person they are for making those shots.

Mod note:
Did the irony of this not raise any flags for you? They shouldn't take shots at his motivations, but here you are taking shots at "what kind of people they are"?

Be better, please.
 


FitzTheRuke

Legend
I agree with you, but I think the argument is supposed to be, if orcs have Powerful Build at their average size, gigantism in an orc could reasonably result in a Large sized character.

I'm not quite sure why 5e still resists playable characters being large size, when being large (by itself) does nothing but make it so that more medium sized creatures can surround you, but it does.

It was different in 3e, for example, when being large came with some automatic mechanical assumptions (and yet, they allowed a few large playable races then!)

At any rate, if an orc becomes large, they'd really gain nothing, so the argument is weird anyway!
 

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