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


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mamba

Hero
the only information we have says it is not.
Actually it is, you wrote
and 4e [...] holding #1 against it's own predecessor being retro cloned by a company with a huge head start by having run Dragon and Dungeon magazine...
when for more than 4 years it failed to hold the #1 against exactly that retroclone (out of the 6 years where both overlapped...)
Edit: can we drop the edition war now, you don't believe anything, Okay, but that doesn't make you right
I never was involved in an edition war, and maybe read again what you wrote before claiming that you were right
 


mamba

Hero
Don’t respond @mamba is baiting you. Plenty of times the numbers and dates have been posted and the anti 4e crowd just ignores it. You said your price you were right let them be wrong
So quoting statistics that prove someone wrong now is baiting ? Also, please show me where exactly I am wrong and GMforPowergamers is right on this, given that the data agrees with my interpretation
 


I agree that it probably did so for the first month or two, I very much doubt it for the lifetime / overall. Would be nice to have some hard numbers either way.
It doesn't matter what you believe. The fact is, every edition of D&D has outsold the previous edition, comfortably as I understand it. 4e did not fail as an edition financially. It only slipped on a metric which only measures brick-and-mortar book sales when Wizards of the Coast stopped publishing new books.

It's not hard to fall into obscurity when you literally don't publish books for three years. All the meantime, of course, 4e was objectively making hundreds of thousands of dollars a month via DDI subscriptions, which could be tracked in real time up until Wizards nuked their forums (again...), financial success that isn't tracked by the ICv2 numbers to the tiniest degree.

4e never failed as an edition of D&D. It only "failed" because, with a deck horrifically stacked against it and WotC making just about every possible unwise (or even stupid) decision it could, it failed to meet Hasbro "core brand" target numbers and it got demoted to life support status. 5e then got incredibly lucky, pretty much the exact and perfect antithesis of the horrible luck 4e got, and (as much as I don't care for it) did in fact make smart marketing and at times even design decisions.

Let the "4e was a horrible failure" myth go. It doesn't serve your point, isn't constructive, and most importantly isn't true. 5e already won the popularity contest. Don't weaken your position trying to defend falsities.
 

GreyLord

Legend
I agree that it probably did so for the first month or two, I very much doubt it for the lifetime / overall. Would be nice to have some hard numbers either way.

What most people miss is the subscription model.

With that in place, even if 4e sold less hardcovers in the long run, it could have made it up with subscription.

With only 10K subscriptions (I know, I know, there are those numbers that say they had up to 80K+, but we are going low on purpose) at $10 a month is an easy 100K a month. That is 1.2 Million a year.

You can up it as you want. Even at 10 mil a year though, that's no where close to 50 million.
 

Aldarc

Legend
I liked the concept of skill challenges, at least for some things, but as implemented at the tables I played at they didn't work very well. I still use a variation of the skill challenge concept now and then but it's less static and more dynamic than what 4E implemented.

Whether D&D 5E works for things outside of combat is a personal preference. It works fine for me and I have no desire whatsoever to resolving everything with dice rolls.
Index Card RPG utilizes something called Effort. It's basically like rolling damage to certain ability check tasks. You may be unlocking a lock, for example, and that lock has 1 Heart (=10 HP) and a DC 13. The thief will first roll an ability check for the DC 13 lock, and then their applicable Effort die: e.g., d6 Effort die with a 4 result, reducing the lock's Heart to 6 HP. So now the thief needs at least another round or two to make the check against the lock and roll their Effort until the lock is picked. This effectively is a skill challenge.
 

mamba

Hero
It doesn't matter what you believe. The fact is, every edition of D&D has outsold the previous edition, comfortably as I understand it.
I agree, in the face of data beliefs do not matter.

Since we have no sales data that is hard to know though, isn’t it? Which is why your strong opening statement fizzles into a weak ‘as I understand it’ ;)

4e did not fail as an edition financially. It only slipped on a metric which only measures brick-and-mortar book sales when Wizards of the Coast stopped publishing new books.
it slipped to second place a year after PF was out and two years before they stopped publishing new stuff, nice try

Also, if it did not disappoint, why was it phased out so fast compared to any other edition?
Honest question, I have no axe to grind with 4e
4e was objectively making hundreds of thousands of dollars a month via DDI subscriptions, which could be tracked in real time up until Wizards nuked their forums (again...), financial success that isn't tracked by the ICv2 numbers to the tiniest degree.
Several 100k a month in revenue is peanuts. A whopping 5M in revenue a year if I am generous…
4e never failed as an edition of D&D. It only "failed" because, with a deck horrifically stacked against it and WotC making just about every possible unwise (or even stupid) decision it could, it failed to meet Hasbro "core brand" target numbers and it got demoted to life support status.
So you are telling me it was the most successful version up to that point yet failed to meet the target numbers and they shelved it?

Let the "4e was a horrible failure" myth go. It doesn't serve your point, isn't constructive, and most importantly isn't true. 5e already won the popularity contest. Don't weaken your position trying to defend falsities.
Again, I have no axe to grind, I do not care which edition is the most popular one (not that there is any doubt), but all the (albeit limited) data I have does not agree with this. So I’d appreciate if you could show some hard data that shows what you are claiming.

From what little data I saw, and the fact that 4e was killed that fast, your claim about its success does not appear to be supported - and I have zero data that contradicts this statement.

Seems more like there are some defenders of 4e out there that are still not really over this
 

Tales and Chronicles

Jewel of the North, formerly know as vincegetorix
Index Card RPG utilizes something called Effort. It's basically like rolling damage to certain ability check tasks. You may be unlocking a lock, for example, and that lock has 1 Heart (=10 HP) and a DC 13. The thief will first roll an ability check for the DC 13 lock, and then their applicable Effort die: e.g., d6 Effort die with a 4 result, reducing the lock's Heart to 6 HP. So now the thief needs at least another round or two to make the check against the lock and roll their Effort until the lock is picked. This effectively is a skill challenge.
And it works pretty well.

I use the same framework as Fantasy Age for extended skill tests: the roll as a DC to beat, a require time-per-roll and a total roll required to end the test. Every point of roll over the DC is cumulated toward the total roll (minimum 1).

So a fighter climbing a huge cliff with athletic may enter a challenge with every roll requiring 5 minutes and a DC of 13. Reaching the top of the plateau requires a total of 15 points.
 


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