Would you rather we get more setting neutral content than adventures?

Chronos96

Villager
I love 5th edition a lot I think it's done wonders for accessibility and exposure to a new group of players or people that maybe wanted to play but didn't know how. That being said after 5 years I've grown pretty tired of the glacial release pace. I'm not saying that I want a new supplement every month but I wish the releases weren't so staggered in the Fall/Winter Seasons. Ideally I wish Wizard's would figure out how to consistently develop and playtest things so that they could get a book out the middle of every physical quarter.

I appreciate that they're generally committed to keeping the quality and value of their releases high but I don't know if the fluff/crunch......something for the Dm/something for the player format is working for me as a consumer anymore.

It's been stated ad nauseum that most adventures fizzle out/ don't make it past level 10 but if I'm being honest I don't really buy the adventures to play them directly and typically just cannibalize elements from them. I would much rather they focus on toolboxes for the dm and player options.

I know they've stated their philosophy of wanting the books to both be useful for the player and the dm but honestly I feel like they'd be better consolidating their efforts entirely on one or the other for each release. I know we have Volo's guide, Xanathar's, Mordenkainen's etc. and I know Wizard's has said they don't want to make a "Player's Handbook 2" but I feel by not focusing on one thing the releases end up being a little weaker than should be.

I get the philosophy behind wanting the players to feel that every release is useable to both the player and the dm and I agree with it in theory but in practice I don't feel that it's necessarily sustainable in the long run. As of now with all the books not counting the Ghost's of Saltmarsh and the Acquisitions INC book we have 17-18 books 10 of those are adventures and the other eight are the three core books and the additional supplements, there's already more material than anyone could possibly use. That's not including homebrew.

Again I don't want the days of 3rd edition or 4th with a new supplement every month but I don't get Wizard's hesitation to make a legitimate Monster Manual 2 or Player's Handbook 2 or even a DM's guide 2. Let's call a spade a spade

The DM's Guide 2 in 4th edition was one of my favorite books. In my opinion it's better to do one thing extremely well instead of trying to dilute it with other material.
 
I do not own a single adventure book, and yet I am able to DM multiple campaigns. I use the Forgotten Realms wiki and the standard books (PHB, DMG, MM), and then create a few plot hooks and then sit back and watch what the players do. There is a wealth of maps and background info online, so if they go somewhere unexpected it takes me only 1 evening of searching to be prepared for the next session.
 

Eubani

Explorer
I have tried to have this discussion in the past unfortunately I kept getting hit with the strawman argument that more automatically means you want a flood thus causing a lowering of quality and the down fall of the edition. There is plenty of non adventure material that this edition has not touched upon let alone the modularity we were promised, so I think we can easily handle 1 or 2 non adventure books extra a year.
 

Chronos96

Villager
Right, like for example if they were to do the third edition weather books (Frostfell, Stormwrack, and the Dessert one) I wish they'd just have it all as one giant book instead of three. I really want either a manual of the planes book that really goes in depth with the Feywild/Shadowfell concepts or maybe a two-volume series. They've shown that they're willing to split adventures why not source material when it warrants it?
 

Shiroiken

Adventurer
I'll agree that a stable timeline of 4 books a year would be good, I think a plan of 3 adventures and 1 non-adventure book per year is fine. I'm not happy that this year's non-adventure is AInc, but I didn't care for the Ravnica book either. Something they could/should do is use the adventures to push various aspects. For example, the Ghosts of Saltmarsh is supposed to expand sea adventuring rules, and an adventure in Sigil or the Elemental Planes could expand knowledge of the Planes.
 

DEFCON 1

Legend
Right, like for example if they were to do the third edition weather books (Frostfell, Stormwrack, and the Dessert one) I wish they'd just have it all as one giant book instead of three. I really want either a manual of the planes book that really goes in depth with the Feywild/Shadowfell concepts or maybe a two-volume series. They've shown that they're willing to split adventures why not source material when it warrants it?
What is it about these 3rd and 4th edition books they have already done that you feel are not usable for 5th edition?
 

DEFCON 1

Legend
I have tried to have this discussion in the past unfortunately I kept getting hit with the strawman argument that more automatically means you want a flood thus causing a lowering of quality and the down fall of the edition. There is plenty of non adventure material that this edition has not touched upon let alone the modularity we were promised, so I think we can easily handle 1 or 2 non adventure books extra a year.
Heh... yeah, but you, I and everybody else also know that we aren't going to get it, because they've told us from the beginning we weren't going to get it. So every time there's an attempted discussion to lament about this fact... people rightly or wrongly show up to question why you are bothering to have it since its the same discussion that's been had for the past five years with the same complaints and the same reasoning and the same explanations. With the results of the discussion being that nothing is changed.

So people right keep wondering what exactly is the point? I mean, if its just to get your voice out there and to hear from a couple other people who agree with you, then okay, I understand that to a certain extent. And as these threads do in fact generate some of those voices, then the threads are succeeding I guess. But in that regard, all the naysayers who show up shouldn't matter or affect your group's collective agreement, because its not as though their voices are stopping your voices from producing tangible effects, because none of our voices are producing *any* tangible effects-- positively or negatively. WotC already has their schedule and they have been successful with it and aren't changing it except on their own time and terms.
 
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dnd4vr

Adventurer
I think, as usual, money is one of the goals in striving for both player and DM content in the same book--that way people who typically only play or DM will both buy the book. IMO it is a horrible system but it has been done since the beginning so it is nothing new.

I am not familiar with a lot of the books (I didn't even know the revised "Against the Giants" was part of Tales From the Yawning Portal LOL :) ) but I would like to see some better organization. One book with all the character creation stuff, one book of all the new spells, one book about the Underdark, etc. I hate having to browse through different books looking for this or that.
 

Morrus

Well, that was fun
Staff member
I love 5th edition a lot I think it's done wonders for accessibility and exposure to a new group of players or people that maybe wanted to play but didn't know how. That being said after 5 years I've grown pretty tired of the glacial release pace. I'm not saying that I want a new supplement every month but I wish the releases weren't so staggered in the Fall/Winter Seasons. Ideally I wish Wizard's would figure out how to consistently develop and playtest things so that they could get a book out the middle of every physical quarter.
There's four this year, I think.

Ghosts of Saltmarsh
Acquisitions Inc.
New storyline (The Descent)
Whatever the fall book is
 

Elfcrusher

Adventurer
Depends on what kind of setting-neutral content.

More player options? Not necessarily, and not very often. Certainly not one a year.

Options for DMs? Sure.
 

robus

Lowcountry Low Roller
I want fantastical worlds/cultures to explore (one of the reasons I find the M:tG Planeshift docs so appealing) and an adventure to animate it (and be the launching point of a long campaign if the setting resonated with my group). If I had my druthers I would have one setting neutral (OK FR) adventure path levels 1-15/5-20 and one brand new campaign setting + intro adventure (1-5) per year (fill in with other books: classic adventure compilations, monster/player expansion). But the worlds of D&D need to be growing, FR is a bit stifling IMHO.
 

Bitbrain

Adventurer
I want Setting-specific Campaign Guides. Gimme an official 5e Dark Sun campaign guide

Failing that, I want more Adventure Paths with detailed information on what sets the adventure's location and inhabitants apart from the other places in the world (like what Storm King's Thunder did for the Savage Frontier).
 

Parmandur

Legend
I love 5th edition a lot I think it's done wonders for accessibility and exposure to a new group of players or people that maybe wanted to play but didn't know how. That being said after 5 years I've grown pretty tired of the glacial release pace. I'm not saying that I want a new supplement every month but I wish the releases weren't so staggered in the Fall/Winter Seasons. Ideally I wish Wizard's would figure out how to consistently develop and playtest things so that they could get a book out the middle of every physical quarter.

I appreciate that they're generally committed to keeping the quality and value of their releases high but I don't know if the fluff/crunch......something for the Dm/something for the player format is working for me as a consumer anymore.

It's been stated ad nauseum that most adventures fizzle out/ don't make it past level 10 but if I'm being honest I don't really buy the adventures to play them directly and typically just cannibalize elements from them. I would much rather they focus on toolboxes for the dm and player options.

I know they've stated their philosophy of wanting the books to both be useful for the player and the dm but honestly I feel like they'd be better consolidating their efforts entirely on one or the other for each release. I know we have Volo's guide, Xanathar's, Mordenkainen's etc. and I know Wizard's has said they don't want to make a "Player's Handbook 2" but I feel by not focusing on one thing the releases end up being a little weaker than should be.

I get the philosophy behind wanting the players to feel that every release is useable to both the player and the dm and I agree with it in theory but in practice I don't feel that it's necessarily sustainable in the long run. As of now with all the books not counting the Ghost's of Saltmarsh and the Acquisitions INC book we have 17-18 books 10 of those are adventures and the other eight are the three core books and the additional supplements, there's already more material than anyone could possibly use. That's not including homebrew.

Again I don't want the days of 3rd edition or 4th with a new supplement every month but I don't get Wizard's hesitation to make a legitimate Monster Manual 2 or Player's Handbook 2 or even a DM's guide 2. Let's call a spade a spade

The DM's Guide 2 in 4th edition was one of my favorite books. In my opinion it's better to do one thing extremely well instead of trying to dilute it with other material.
Granted that it might not work for you: but this strategy has really, really worked for WotC. They will keep it up until it does not work for them.
 

Umbran

Mod Squad
Staff member
... there's already more material than anyone could possibly use. That's not including homebrew.

Again I don't want the days of 3rd edition or 4th with a new supplement every month but I don't get Wizard's hesitation to make a legitimate Monster Manual 2 or Player's Handbook 2 or even a DM's guide 2.
But you just said it right there! There is already more material than anyone can use. "I already have more than I need, so pick up the pace of publishing!" does not make a whole lot of sense, to me.

None of us are fully informed on the business side of things, but indications from Amazon sales rankings and other anecdotal evidence is that sales... are pretty darned awesome. If I was seeing performance from a game like this, I would not fix what isn't broken. While I can understand some folks just *want* more content to chew on more quickly, the businesss generally seems better served with the slower pace.
 

doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
What is it about these 3rd and 4th edition books they have already done that you feel are not usable for 5th edition?
For a lot of people, the idea of buying books from a version to the game they aren’t going to play, so that they can then do the work of translating its contents into the game they are going to play, is just untenable.

That said, I’ve found that translating 4e monsters to 5e, with very little change other than a handy table for what numbers are normal at a given tier of play in 5e, leads to more interesting 5e combats. Magic items are harder in a lot of cases, but once you have a knack for reading what “X squares” or “Y Damage” translate to in 5e, it’s not too bad.

For me, I don’t trust the balance of anything from 3e, on any level. Mechanically/in terms of balance, my view is that 3/.5e dnd is mostly garbage. So, all 3e books are good for, for me, is lore and basic concept inspiration.

Either way, stuff like playable satyrs and dryads, elementalist (not wild magic!) sorcerers, hard-focus summoners, djinn pact warlocks, and all kinds of other stuff, are things that if they exist in old edition books, aren’t going to translate in a quick and easy way that a DM that isn’t super experienced is going to be certain of the comparative power level.

Races don’t impact the game as much as a lot of folks act like, so as long as you aren’t throwing several skill trainings or freebie spells, any race that looks like a phb race is going to be fine, but feats, spells, magic items, and class options are harder to balance, sometimes been for experienced DMs.

Also, not all groups/DMs like using homebrew player options. They aren’t “wrong”, and there’s nothing wrong with them hoping for more official options.
 

doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
On the other hand, I don’t want things like a PHB2.

Xanathar’s sold well and works very well as a book because, like the phb, it has stuff for everyone, and it expands the game in ways other than just more monsters and player options. Morty’s Doesn’t have as much player stuff, but it’s primarily a DM book with some player stuff, so I don’t mind.

It’s a good model.
 

Chronos96

Villager
What is it about these 3rd and 4th edition books they have already done that you feel are not usable for 5th edition?
Where did I ever say that the old material wasn't useable?

Nothing. The point has nothing to do with the usability of the old material. I'm saying if they were to make a 5th ed manual of the planes or if they were to do something like Frostfell, Sandstorm, Stromwrack, etc. again I would rather they consolidate all the material into one release.

To clarify further when there's only material for one book they should make one book when it warrants two books as in the case of the Waterdeep adventures and to a lesser extent Tyranny of Dragons they should make two books.

I personally feel that something like the Manual of the planes book would benefit from two volumes. For example volume 1 could be the Feywild/ Shadowfell and the Elemental Planes along with the positive and negative planes. Volume 2 would be the Astral Sea and the Nine Hells along with the twelve outer realms like Bytopia, Elysium, etc. Make them as big as the Player's Handbook and give them room to expand on the material.


One of the arguments I constantly see when this topic is brought up is if you want to use a concept that exists in an old book then use the old books. That's fine in of itself but it's also a faulty premise. By that logic why should Wizard's bother making a new edition of DnD? TSR already gave us all the materials we needed to make another one from the original DM's guide. Why should they have bothered making the 4th ed Eberron Campaign guide when there was already the 3rd edition version

The answer is the convenience of it. No, we don't need every supplement remade or updated but there are aspects of the game like campaign settings or old adventures that are cornerstones that have made the game what it is. I'd wager that the majority of us aren't game designers so it would be nice if they bring back a particular aspect or setting like Darksun or Ravenloft (Yes I know Curse of Strahd Exists).

So yeah sure I can convert all the old material by myself but it's probably not going to happen. There's something to be said for ease of accessibility and I'm not talking about how all the old books are available as a pdf. The bottom line is it's nice to not have to sift through everything.
 

Chronos96

Villager
But you just said it right there! There is already more material than anyone can use. "I already have more than I need, so pick up the pace of publishing!" does not make a whole lot of sense, to me
Except that's not what I'm saying. I'm saying that I don't want staggered releases and want the publishing schedule to be consistent throughout the year. So for example, if there are 4 books in a year the first one would come out in February the second in June, third in September and the 4th in November. That way the amount of content that's being released doesn't change but the frequency of its release does.

I know the design team is small and like I said I don't want the quality to lower but they need to either figure out a way to outsource some of the work or playtesting. The fact the Player's Handbook is one of the best selling books on Amazon should be proof enough to Wizard's investors that the franchise is still viable.

Again I'm not saying they should go crazy but there's no reason we should starve for information about new titles either. If there's one issue with D&D in its current iteration it's that they don't promote themselves very well. All we really get is the big twitch stream once a year and then basically radio silence. True there are shows like lore you should know or dragon talk but again they don't really seem to promote themselves. I didn't know those shows even existed until the first stream.
 

77IM

Explorer!!!
I DM at my FLGS so I have to lug all the books I need to the store myself.

So the thought of MM2, DMG2, etc. horrifies me. To be fair, it's no worse than Volo's, Xanathar's, etc. What all of these books have in common is that they are "more of the same" -- incremental changes to the game that increase its mass. They increase the number of rules without substantially changing anything. Plus, they increase the physical mass of my bag of books.

I only want supplements that change the game in some way. I don't want to leave a book at home because "I can't carry any more," I want to leave it at home because it contains material that isn't appropriate to my campaign. Examples of game-changers from previous editions might be Manual of the Planes, Heroes of Horror, and the unfortunately-named Oriental Adventures. Those would allow groups to take the game in totally new directions, and would be worth their cost, in dollars, rules comprehension, and weight.
 

Hussar

Legend
Just a thought though about how you can have kinda both setting guides and adventures - Dragon Heist is exactly that. DH is a massive setting guide for Waterdeep. Some 180 NPC's, history, and extremely detailed stuff about running an entire campaign within the walls of Waterdeep itself. It's pretty much the Paizo approach to adventure paths - half setting guide, half adventure.

To me, that's just all sorts of win. Those who want to get into the setting aren't stuck with this 300 page brick of a book which they have to read, injest and then turn into a campaign - a ton of work that, frankly, I might as well do my own setting really. It's the same amount of work, so, why am I buying this setting guide again? OTOH, for the setting guys out there, they get a detailed setting guide to the setting, just presented in module format. Very much like how nearly all the Greyhawk and Golarian material has been presented.

They've done it now with Ravenloft and Waterdeep. If they want me to get into another setting, present it as an Adventure Path and I'm all in. Campaign in a box. Fantastic. Setting guide that I have to use as a reference to make my own homebrew campaign in that setting? No thanks. Not interested.
 

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