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D&D 4E Your plans for 4e

Radiating Gnome

Adventurer
Dood, Karate Kid is TOTALLY a coming of age film, even without Molly Ringwald, and is not really a martial arts movie at all. ;)

I hear what you're saying. I still think that *most* things will be possible with the new system, but especially as characters enter the heroic and paragon tiers, trying to tell a "karate kid" story will be hard, what with all the running up bamboo trees and jumping over small buildings in a single bound. It's certainly a system where a desire to run "grittier" games might make people happier with older versions. And, I haven't seen the final, full rules yet either, so it's mostly guesswork anyway.

-j
 

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WizarDru

Adventurer
Radiating Gnome said:
I hear what you're saying. I still think that *most* things will be possible with the new system, but especially as characters enter the heroic and paragon tiers, trying to tell a "karate kid" story will be hard, what with all the running up bamboo trees and jumping over small buildings in a single bound. It's certainly a system where a desire to run "grittier" games might make people happier with older versions. And, I haven't seen the final, full rules yet either, so it's mostly guesswork anyway.

I can see that, but it sounds more to me like it's just become more obvious how those sweet spots for people's personal preferences have changed in the new edition. In 3.x, the minute certain spells enter the lexicon, all bets are off on certain kinds of games. It doesn't sound like 4e is so much a departure from that fact as stratifying more clearly when that fact is evident and consciously changing assumptions within the rules, as opposed to older editions, where it might not have happened or might have been external to the rules, but well known by it's players.
 

Radiating Gnome

Adventurer
My guess is that you're right, that the three tiers are going to help describe the sort of game you're playing -- and the game will change as the players move through the tiers.

Still dying to see the rules, though.

-rg
 

Pbartender

First Post
I talked it over with the group last night... Our current plans are for me to run a fairly standard D&D game of the old Gygax style, starting at 1st level. We will be using just the first three Core books coming out this summer, and no house rules... Straight up and by the book.

In the meantime, I'm starting to put ideas together for the campaign setting. Initial thoughts...

- Loosely based on 16th Century Earth. The Age of Exploration allows for the mixing and matching of everything D&D usually offers... That is to say, plate mail and greatswords won't look entirely out of pace alongside leather and rapiers, and it wouldn't be unfeasible to have someone from the Far East traveling with Pseudo-Europeans, should someone want to play something exotic.

- Teiflings will be the ruling families of the equivalent of the Turkish Ottoman Empire. They originated from the equivalent of the Ancient Egyptian ruling families... descended from the "gods" and all that.

- Dragonborn will likewise be the ruling families of the Far East Asian-styled Empires.

- Eladrin will be the last remaining survivors of a long-lost world-spanning Empire not unlike Atlantis, which was destroyed centuries ago in a war with the Teifling Empire of the time. Their name is derived from Ala Hadarim (Roughly, "they come in excellence"). Currently, they are scattered and without a homeland.

- Elves are colonial Eladrin who went native after the fall of their Empire. They'll be on par with native North American, South American and African tribes mostly living in the forests and jungles. Dark Elves, Drow, will be blood-sacrificing Aztecs.

- In know it's cliche, but Dwarves are necessarily Norse Vikings.

- I haven't decided what to do with Halflings yet.
 
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phoamslinger

Explorer
halflings would obviously be peaceful (?) villagers from the Scottish lowlands. didn't you watch Willow?

Madmartigan: "Peck, peck, pect, pict, pict, Pict..."

Pict
Pronunciation: \pikt\
Function: noun
Etymology: Middle English Pictes, plural, Picts, from Old English Pihtas, from Late Latin Picti
Date: before 12th century
: a member of a people of the north of Scotland who are first noted in historical records in the late third century and who became amalgamated with the Scots in the mid-eighth century
— Pict·ish \ˈpik-tish\ adjective or noun
 

Pbartender

First Post
Plane Sailing said:
That sounds really cool! I like it!

(would it be too much to type to make the halflings the English? :))

phoamslinger said:
halflings would obviously be peaceful (?) villagers from the Scottish lowlands. didn't you watch Willow?

I was half thinking that Halflings could be to Humans, what the Saxons or the Britons were to the Normans. Make them default back-country peasants (roly-poly farm-loving barefoot Tolkien halflings) and urban gypsies (pseudo-kender 3E/4E halflings).

Halflings were the original inhabitants of the Western Kingdoms, before the humans took over.
 

Radiating Gnome

Adventurer
Well, Crap.

I just saw the Paizo announcement of Pathfinder (basically 3.75).

I've returned from DDXP full of warmth and good cheer about WOTC and the new edition of the game. But I have to carry that around with a pretty strong bad taste in my mouth for the way they've handled the GSL and put Paizo in a position where they really had no choice but to go their own way.

This is going to divide the community. I think there will be enough faithful to keep Paizo going, give them the customer base they need to keep the doors open and keep producing the best APs that have been produced.

This doesn't change my plans, though. I'm still going 4e. It has been our intention all along to break out of the AP rut and create our next campaign ourselves, so I wouldn't have been using a Paizo AP out of the box again, anyway.

In a perfect world I'd buy both game systems and keep up on both, but I don't know if that's going to be possible. If they had continued along parallel paths I probably would have continued to subscribe to Pathfinder . . . maybe I still will for a while, and see . . .But I can forsee a time when I have moved enough into the 4e world that I'm not even using a few dribs and drabs out of the pathfinder stuff.

And . . . yet . . . I make my living in my day job thanks to open source software, and that makes it even harder to turn away from the game that has that OS philosophy behind it.

Meh. I need a drink.

-john
 

(contact)

Explorer
Yeh, I'd buy you that drink, John.

WotC fuxxored every part of this 4e rollout in my opinion, not the least of which is shafting a better company (Paizo) and forcing them away from the community.

The rules and game better be outstanding, because nearly every other aspect of this launch has put me off the game.
 


Kid Charlemagne

I am the Very Model of a Modern Moderator
Yeah, whoever at WoTC delayed the GSL should be fired. I'm guessing that they can revise their 4E sales of the core 3 books down by 10%, and all of that can be laid at the feet of whoever decided to make the GSL an afterthought.

Just incredibly stupid.
 

Plane Sailing

Astral Admin - Mwahahaha!
(contact) said:
WotC fuxxored every part of this 4e rollout in my opinion

I can't help but compare this with the 3e rollout which was exemplary by any standards.

Considering then we had the constant drip of playtester reports, views of mechanics changes during progress (including why they went from one option to another), a monthly article in Dragon magazine (whatever else they might think, a monthly print publication fixes deadlines like website publishing never can).

Looking back at the state of what we knew and when we knew it for 3e and 4e, and I'm left wondering what ON EARTH the 4e marketing people were thinking of.

Seriously.
 

Radiating Gnome

Adventurer
Okay, so I've been stumbling around the house, thinking about this and nodding while my wife talks about something else which I'm not really listening to. I'm walking through some lines of thought -- not sure I believe any of this, mind you, but I'm walking through it.

First of all, Wizards and Paizo had a relationship that we assume was good -- they've never said it wasn't good. But that doesn't mean that it WAS a good relationship. It's possible -- probable -- that there were tensions and challenges, and especially now that Paizo has really thrown down the gauntlet with their excellent writing and production values, it's not hard to imagine that Wizards doesn't see Paizo as a former ally, but as a current adversary in the market -- if not really competition for volume, then at least for design respect, etc.

Another train of thought . . . The SRD, on which so much since the launch of 3.0 has been based, wasn't made available to anyone before the original 3.0 books were released. Those companies that are heavily invested now in 3.5 didn't exist in this way before 3.0, and the formed themselves out of primordial gamer clay after the original release of 3.0. SO . . . there really is no precendent for Wizards to follow right now. We might all like to see them be much more open with the new game, but expecting them to make a new 4.0 SRD/GSL available before the public release of the game is not asking them to continue the way they've operated in the past, it's asking them to do something they have no real business need to do. Remember, they've pretty much given up on any serious book sales for the past year, since the announced 4e last gen con. I don't have any numbers, but I can't imagine that the sales of the fluff books they have released this year have been anything like the numbers for books they've produced in the past. The payoff for that lean year is a year of big numbers as the new version comes out, and a honeymoon period as they're the ONLY company with content for the new version. I can understand a lot of business managers sitting back and asking "why in the heck would you give that up"?

It's like, yesterday, when I knew I would be going to a bar for dinner, and not wanting to go over my weightwatchers points for the day, so I limped along all day on just a few points for each meal, drinking a lot of water, so that I would have enough points for the bacon cheeseburger at the bar. Once I got to the bar, if you had asked me to let someone else eat my burger and settle for a nice diet frozen dinner instead, I might just have punched you in the nose. I can't really recommend that anyone ask me for a bite of my burger, even. You might just want to keep your hands and feet away from the table when it's burger time, that's all I'm saying.

So . . . I guess I can see how the decisions that have apparently been made at Wizards (made through inaction or delay, if not through solid direction and leadership) might not be bad business. I can wish, though, that they would have done things differently. I wish that they had not promised some sort of gsl with the potential for an early bird deal for publishers willing to pony up some "are you serious" cash. I wish that they had had the balls and sense of purpose to say "We can't make the final game available until the launch, after the launch we'll talk about the SRD/GSL". It's not the decisions that I really disapprove of, it's the methods and the relationship they have with the community that bothers me. Make a decision, live up to it, and stand up and tell people what you're doing. Even if the community doesn't like the decision, it's going to be far less painful to deal with it in an upright manner than it is to deal with the slow death of this sort of mess.

All of this doesn't really get into what we're planning to play. My experience with 4e as a game, divorced from the companies and issues around it's production, is positive enough for me to have no doubt in my mind about what I'll be playing 6 months from now. I think the designers who've worked on the game have really done some terrific work.

I wish that this mess were not out there, though. it's going to keep a lot of people in the community from being able to try the new edition with an open mind.

-j
 

gothwalk

Explorer
Thing is that even for those entities that put together the cash for the early look, nothing has yet appeared. Wolfgang Baur's Open Design project assembled the $5K in no time flat, and he's now been waiting for three months for any word at all from WotC.
 

Radiating Gnome

Adventurer
I know. My problem with the whole mess is that they made the promise of the GSL offer before the were ready to distribute the GSL for review. They should have been able to distribute the license for review when they made the announcement.

Had they had the balls to come out and say "it doesn't make sense for us right now to share the incomplete ruleset" or something along those lines, they would have caught some hell for it, but they wouldn't come off like weasels.

-j
 

el-remmen

Moderator Emeritus
Hey RG, as far as I recall, other companies did have access to the SRD before the releases of 3.0 - I mean didn't S&S put out books even as the corebooks were coming out?
 

Radiating Gnome

Adventurer
Really? Could be, I wasn't really plugged into the community at the time -- 3.0 brought me back to D&D from a bunch of other games.

I did a little poking around. The pub date for the 3.0 phb was August 1, 2000. The Creature Collection (which, as far as I can tell, was the first S&S book in their line) came out October 1, 2000. I have been searching for something more concrete than "2000" for the date when the actual SRD was released.

-j
 

el-remmen

Moderator Emeritus
Radiating Gnome said:
Really? Could be, I wasn't really plugged into the community at the time -- 3.0 brought me back to D&D from a bunch of other games.

I did a little poking around. The pub date for the 3.0 phb was August 1, 2000. The Creature Collection (which, as far as I can tell, was the first S&S book in their line) came out October 1, 2000. I have been searching for something more concrete than "2000" for the date when the actual SRD was released.

-j

So yeah, I mean, i don't think they put that book together in 2 months! Actually, I own that book. . . maybe they did ;)
 


el-remmen

Moderator Emeritus
Enkhidu said:
IIRC, the SRD used for Creature Collection was something of a proto-SRD - more gentleman's agreement than codified license.

Ah yes, I remember that now! So, what? Are we not dealing with 'gentlemen' this time? ;)
 

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