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Gravious
2010-08-16, 09:57 PM
Currently I'm in the middle of a 3.5e game with some friends... we got together about once a month. We already started planning the next campaign (who was DM, character concepts, etc.) but the current DM says that we need to scratch our plans and move on to 4e. What I've been hearing about 4e is that it's terrible, 3.5 is much better, etc. When I told him that, he told me that the only real changes were a more fluid combat system and more customization options. What are your thoughts on this?

Zaq
2010-08-16, 10:00 PM
The way that I had to think about things to enjoy 4e was to realize that it's just not D&D. Once you stop expecting it to be D&D, you can have fun with it. If you want it to be D&D, you'll be disappointed, but once you let yourself realize that it's not, you can enjoy it for what it IS, which is an entertaining game.

It's actually a lot of fun and I'm enjoying the 4e game I'm in very much. I just can't try to think of it as real D&D.

Guy
2010-08-16, 10:01 PM
The way that I had to think about things to enjoy 4e was to realize that it's just not 3.5. Once you stop expecting it to be D&D, you can have fun with it. If you want it to be 3.5, you'll be disappointed, but once you let yourself realize that it's not, you can enjoy it for what it IS, which is an entertaining game.

It's actually a lot of fun and I'm enjoying the 4e game I'm in very much. I just can't try to think of it as 3.5.

Reverent-One
2010-08-16, 10:02 PM
My advice, play it and try it for yourself and don't let yourself be swayed too early from people on either side of the debate.

*leaves thread*

mobdrazhar
2010-08-16, 10:05 PM
My advice, play it and try it for yourself and don't let yourself be swayed too early from people on either side of the debate.

*leaves thread*

+1

i enjoy playing both 3.5 and 4e. Just don't expect one to be the same as the other and you should be fine

Lhurgyof
2010-08-16, 10:07 PM
Well, without starting an edition war, here are my thoughts.

4ed gets a couple things right, things are more balanced, and combat is easier at lower levels.

Things it did wrong? Deterred from the general "D&D formula" that's been around since the original game.

I would rather play a 4ed game, than a game of 3.5 with a rule abuser any day. But, in any other circumstance, I'd pick 3.5. That's my opinion, and in no way is proving that 4e is worse, it's more a thing of which you prefer, just try it out.

Master_Rahl22
2010-08-16, 10:20 PM
Combat is more tactical, it's much harder to get a worthless character, classes are much closer to each other in terms of power, skills are simplified, and getting something new every level (feats, ability boosts, powers) makes leveling up fun without being a huge amount of bookkeeping.

That said, there are some 3.5 character builds that simply cannot be recreated in 4E, skills are simplified (both a plus and a minus depending on who you talk to), and some people have problems with Martial characters who can only use some of their super special moves once per day and others once per fight.

All in all, if you can come into it with an open mind and not expecting it to be like previous editions, it can be really fun. I enjoy both 4E and 3.5, and it's possible that you will too.

Raz_Fox
2010-08-16, 10:20 PM
It's actually a lot of fun and I'm enjoying the 4e game I'm in very much. I just can't try to think of it as real D&D.

*inflamatory accusation of elitism*

*heated defense of preferred edition*

*implication that you are playing the game wrong because you don't play it like I do*

Vitruviansquid
2010-08-16, 10:21 PM
I love 4e more than anything... but isn't it just creating a lot of trouble to declare a system switch when you guys have already started rolling characters? :smallfrown:

Tequila Sunrise
2010-08-16, 10:24 PM
The way that I had to think about things to enjoy 4e was to realize that it's just not 3.5. Once you stop expecting it to be D&D, you can have fun with it. If you want it to be 3.5, you'll be disappointed, but once you let yourself realize that it's not, you can enjoy it for what it IS, which is an entertaining game.

It's actually a lot of fun and I'm enjoying the 4e game I'm in very much. I just can't try to think of it as 3.5.
+1.

I play 4e pretty much exclusively, and I can attest that it is very much a fun D&D game:

Dungeons? Check!
Dragons? Check!
Magic? Check!
Swords? Check!
Level-Based Advancement? Check!
Heavy Dependence on Magical Bling? Check!
Wacky Ecosystem-Defying Monsters? Check!
Humans, Elves, War Forged, and everything in between? Check!

There's more, but really, just give it a try with an open mind.

Gavinfoxx
2010-08-16, 10:27 PM
Well I think 4e is, flat out a better *game* than 3.5e.

Keyword GAME. As in the type of game that is 'rules for minatures-based combat where each player controls a character which is roughly equally useful at combat to all the other characters, and one person controls all the monsters, traps, and hazards in the combat encounter'. 4e does *that* MUCH better than 3.5e.

But 3.5e has more SOUL. More insanity. More pizazz. More total arbitrariness, weirdness, and more possibilities, BECAUSE it doesn't try to limit itself to being a cohesive, balanced miniatures game.

ghost_warlock
2010-08-16, 10:28 PM
he told me that the only real changes were a more fluid combat system and more customization options.

Your friend is out of his mind.

Gravious
2010-08-16, 10:29 PM
Thanks for the responses guys. Guess I was just thinking in terms of black/white, yeah? As I said, it's more than a year away from happening so I can't immediately make any (informed) declarations on if I like it, have fun with it, etc.

EDIT: Fixed grammar :smallsmile:

mobdrazhar
2010-08-16, 10:29 PM
Your friend is out of his mind.

agreed! The changes are fairly extensive but easy to pick up

enderrocksonall
2010-08-16, 10:37 PM
I prefer 3.5 because of the simple fact that all the rules that apply to characters also apply to the monsters.

In 4th edition the monsters get to "ignore" several rules that limit the characters abilities. For example, monsters can use more than one action point in a single encounter, whereas characters cannot.

Also the difference in character powers versus monster powers is just too drastic. There are monsters that are supposedly a CR 5 that have powers that inflict statuses that characters NEVER gain access to. The only reason our group knows what the effects of the dominated condition are, is because once a week at least one of us gets hit with it.

So yah, my vote is for 3.5 because of the universal rules that apply to everyone. Also it is easier to houserule in 3.5.

Nu
2010-08-16, 10:42 PM
So yah, my vote is for 3.5 because of the universal rules that apply to everyone. Also it is easier to houserule in 3.5.

I don't think house rules are any harder in 4E than 3.x. I run a 4E game currently and I bend the rules slightly all the time. It's not hard or detrimental, I don't think.

It might be harder to completely create a character class from scratch in 4E, I admit, because you have to make up all the powers. 4E Essentials might ease that burden a bit, though.

valadil
2010-08-16, 10:44 PM
I like 4e. I also like 3.5. They're different games, even they're both D&D.

Now on to specifics.


When I told him that, he told me that the only real changes were a more fluid combat system and more customization options. What are your thoughts on this?

I'm not sure that fluid is the word I'd use. It's more consistent. Actions and abilities are standardized better. This is a good thing, it's just that fluid isn't quite the right term for it IMO.

Customization is different. A lot of people say you're more limited in what you can build. I don't disagree with that. You get one class and essentially two prestige classes. Most feats are class dependent. Compared to 3.5's free for all character building, this is more limited.

That said, it's harder to build an ineffective character. I mean, obviously you could put an 8 in your prime stat and be ineffective. But it's harder to do it by accident. As long as you take powers that fit your stats your character won't be that far behind an optimized character. In my eyes, this allows for more customization since all those weird, deviant choices are still valid.

Gravious
2010-08-16, 10:45 PM
I prefer 3.5 because of the simple fact that all the rules that apply to characters also apply to the monsters.

In 4th edition the monsters get to "ignore" several rules that limit the characters abilities. For example, monsters can use more than one action point in a single encounter, whereas characters cannot.

*snip*


Wait wait wait..... monsters can use more than 1 action point per encounter in 4e? That sounds SO easily exploitable...... what about a bunch of Kobolds that keep using Healing Surges? Couldn't 1 standard Kobold, as long as it is not killed in 1 hit, outlast the party caster? *bash face into wall at thought*

Kylarra
2010-08-16, 10:45 PM
Wait wait wait..... monsters can use more than 1 action point per encounter in 4e? That sounds SO easily exploitable...... what about a bunch of Kobolds that keep using Healing Surges? Couldn't 1 standard Kobold, as long as it is not killed in 1 hit, outlast the party caster? *bash face into wall at thought*Monsters only get one surge per tier generally.

Fuzzie Fuzz
2010-08-16, 10:46 PM
In before the lock to say...

Well I like it...

EDIT: Also, only solo monsters (the very powerful monsters that are designed to take on an entire party by themselves) get 2 action points anyways. Elites (mid-powered monsters) get 1 each, and standard monsters don't get any. And yeah, 1 Surge per tier.

EDIT 2: And all this does is make it more balanced, so that a single monster with one set of actions per round can take on a party with 5 or more actions per round.

Nu
2010-08-16, 10:47 PM
Wait wait wait..... monsters can use more than 1 action point per encounter in 4e? That sounds SO easily exploitable...... what about a bunch of Kobolds that keep using Healing Surges? Couldn't 1 standard Kobold, as long as it is not killed in 1 hit, outlast the party caster? *bash face into wall at thought*

Usually only solos or elites even have action points.

Gravious
2010-08-16, 10:49 PM
The 4e DM's guide (The only 4e rulebook I have) lists Kobold Dragonshields as level 2 Soldiers. The Surges would allow them to stay alive for almost double their HP.

Edit because of what Nu said: I suppose that applies to Healing Surges too then. Neeeeevermind.

Mystic Muse
2010-08-16, 10:49 PM
I was under the impression that the reason some monsters got more than one action point per encounter is because they aren't expected to last through the encounter unlike the Players.

Nu
2010-08-16, 10:53 PM
The 4e DM's guide (The only 4e rulebook I have) lists Kobold Dragonshields as level 2 Soldiers. The Surges would allow them to stay alive for almost double their HP.

Edit because of what Nu said: I suppose that applies to Healing Surges too then. Neeeeevermind.

It's more of most monsters are assumed to have a healing surge per tier, but they don't have a way to spend them because they don't have the "Second Wind" power/ability.

In 4E, you can't just spend healing surges in the middle of combat unless you have a way to do so. That's one second wind per encounter, and whatever powers you have that let you or your allies spend healing surges. Most monsters don't have anything like that.

During a short rest, you can spend healing surges freely, but not in the middle of a fight.

Gravious
2010-08-16, 10:56 PM
I thought I heard somewhere that a healer of some sort had the power to activate somebody's healing surges when they were unable to do so..... dunno though.

nightwyrm
2010-08-16, 11:02 PM
I thought I heard somewhere that a healer of some sort had the power to activate somebody's healing surges when they were unable to do so..... dunno though.

Yes, and that's basically what leader type PCs are good at. But monsters normally don't any healer powers like that.

Monster's healing surges are just there for some extremely rare case that they happen to receive healing from somebody. 99% of the time, you completely can ignore how many healing surges a monster have.

devinkowalczyk
2010-08-16, 11:04 PM
3.5 was far more free in terms of breakability and creativity.

4 offers fairness and balance with simplicity


both have their ups and downs

tcrudisi
2010-08-16, 11:12 PM
In 4th edition the monsters get to "ignore" several rules that limit the characters abilities. For example, monsters can use more than one action point in a single encounter, whereas characters cannot.

Also the difference in character powers versus monster powers is just too drastic. There are monsters that are supposedly a CR 5 that have powers that inflict statuses that characters NEVER gain access to. The only reason our group knows what the effects of the dominated condition are, is because once a week at least one of us gets hit with it.

So yah, my vote is for 3.5 because of the universal rules that apply to everyone. Also it is easier to houserule in 3.5.

Dominate at level 5? Bards can do that. At higher levels, so can quite a few classes. There are very few abilities that monsters have that players don't have. Usually, there's is just a variation of it somehow. For instance, maybe the monster has an aura that causes 5 damage every time a PC starts in it. The Fighter has an ability which causes weapon damage whenever a monster starts adjacent to him. Typically, the monsters that have new abilities are level 30+.

The action point thing has already been straightened out, I do believe.

As for my opinion? When your usual DM runs one game of 4e, he will not want to go back to any other D&D edition. DMing is such a breeze and you can spend an hour preparing for the game and get as much done as 4+ hours in 3.5. That's not an exaggeration and I am erring on the side of caution by only saying 4 hours.

The game is different. Much different. 2nd ed. to 3rd ed was very different too. THAC0 to the BAB you are used to, for instance. Expect it to be different, but also expect it to be fun, because it is. Love how everyone's characters are equal around the table, as opposed to 3.5 where a Wizard, Druid, or Cleric steals most of the show.

Am I saying that 3.5 was bad? Oh gods no. I loved 3.5. I still would had I not played with a (insert any derogatory term) player who was creating Pun-Pun, so I left 3.5 and never looked back. Yeah, it's has its drawbacks, but I find them fewer in number and less in importance than 3.5's flaws.

However, that is my opinion. I played both, I enjoyed both. I just like 4e better. Just please go into it with an open mind and don't try to compare it to 3.5. They are entirely different games.

*edit* Also, about Leaders being able to heal other players: Yes, they can. In fact, in 3.5 nobody really wanted to play the in-combat healer because you spend your whole turn healing someone else. In 4e they fixed that. If you can heal, you can do it and still attack in your turn, without spending an action point. Basically, you can attack, move, and heal (in any order). So playing the healer is very fun.

Chainsaw Hobbit
2010-08-16, 11:15 PM
Well, 3.5 is more flexible, intricate, and has more, well, spirit.
It allows more unique customization and feels more like original D&D.

4.0 is more balanced, streamlined, and new-player friendly.
Think of it as half-way between 3.5 and the minis game with some rules fixes.

tcrudisi
2010-08-16, 11:23 PM
Well, 3.5 ... feels more like original D&D.

4.0 is more balanced, streamlined, and new-player friendly.
Think of it as half-way between 3.5 and the minis game with some rules fixes.

Neither 3.5 or 4e feel like original D&D. Heck, 2nd edition doesn't even feel like original D&D. I don't ever remember, in 3.5, having to make a d20 roll and consult a chart to see if I was successful or not. Level caps in 3.5? Nope. It's all so very, very different.

4e is just a continuation of what Tome of Battle was doing, really. And now, even though I never did it before 4e, I can't imagine trying to play any version of D&D without minis. It just makes the combat make so much more sense in combat. I can't believe we never did it before, honestly. Are minis required for 4e? No, not any more than is required for 3.5 where you need to know distances (which is basically every spell). For 4e it's just had minis implemented into it more successfully, and I am grateful for that.

Yorrin
2010-08-16, 11:25 PM
I played 4e for the first year it was out. I've played 3.5 before and after, and I see merits in both systems.

The biggest difference, in my mind, is that 4e is a lot simpler. This makes things move a lot more quickly than 3.5, and makes things also much more balanced. But for that speed and balance you exchange flexibility in character creation.

Admittedly that's probably gotten better in the last year or so, but once you get used to the system you'll notice that characters start to feel pretty similar to each other after you've played classes for each "role" a few times. Some people like the comfort of finding one role and sticking to it campaign after campaign. I'm not such a person.

tcrudisi is right about one thing for sure: 4e is a lot easier to DM. Which might have something to do with your DM's motivations. And it's just plain old fun to try a new system. If you're anything like me you're going to have a blast figuring all the new rules and how your character concept fits into this new structure.

Gravious
2010-08-16, 11:32 PM
One thing I'm curious about is class creation. I've never done it, and because our next campaign is going to be 4e I'd like to ask about how complicated/customizable it is.

tcrudisi
2010-08-16, 11:35 PM
One thing I'm curious about is class creation. I've never done it, and because our next campaign is going to be 4e I'd like to ask about how complicated/customizable it is.

So let me get this straight: you are about to play a new game for the first time, and rather than exploring and playing with the classes that are available, you want to immediately jump in and create your own class? :smallfrown:

I've seen some homebrew for it, but I've never felt the desire to create a class in 4e. There are still quite a few classes I've not played and I want to play them all (and some of them several times) before I even think of creating my own class.

Gravious
2010-08-16, 11:38 PM
So let me get this straight: you are about to play a new game for the first time, and rather than exploring and playing with the classes that are available, you want to immediately jump in and create your own class? :smallfrown:


Basically, yes. I'm adventurous like that. Besides, if I'm going into a new system I, at least, would like to fully explore the possibilities of said system.

Vitruviansquid
2010-08-16, 11:39 PM
1. Pick your class and build. (Helps a lot if the whole party coordinated when rolling your classes, especially so you don't get too many redundant roles)

2. Pick a race to go along with it.

3. Choose your stats by one of the arrays helpfully provided for you. At least 18 in your main stat is healthy, though I've certainly seen and played characters with less.

4. Pick your level 1 powers and feat(s)

5. Pick your equipment.

6. Fill in the flavor for your character.

7. If you're not starting at level 1, level up to the level from which you're starting. Ask your DM what you should have in terms of magic equipment and money.

<== Reading failed.

In any case, I would greatly suggest you play non-homebrew before you start homebrewing, as a blanket rule I apply to every RPG and game in general. Each class in 4e plays so differently, even when they're supposedly of the same niche, that I'm sure you can find a class you'd fit in with.

Yorrin
2010-08-16, 11:42 PM
Basically, yes. I'm adventurous like that. Besides, if I'm going into a new system I, at least, would like to fully explore the possibilities of said system.

Yeah, that's one problem with 4e. It takes a LOT of effort to customize something like an entire class. MUCH easier to just re-fluff existing classes. Like, seriously. Get used to the idea of re-flavoring. It's going to be the only thing that lets you roleplay whatever character concept you've got in mind.

mobdrazhar
2010-08-16, 11:43 PM
One thing I'm curious about is class creation. I've never done it, and because our next campaign is going to be 4e I'd like to ask about how complicated/customizable it is.

class creation for 4e is much more exshaustive than in 3.5 (and if you've never done class creation before you may find it overwhelming). This is due to the fact that you have to create multiple powers for EACH lvl.

My suggestion would be to choose one of the classes already predefined (and there is a good selection).

you will find that the classes are all fairly balanced with each other.

Silly Wizard
2010-08-16, 11:48 PM
I love both 3.5 and 4e, and I can tell you one thing: I'm never going to DM 3.5 again. 4e is where it's at.

chaotoroboto
2010-08-17, 12:04 AM
tcrudisi is right about one thing for sure: 4e is a lot easier to DM. Which might have something to do with your DM's motivations. And it's just plain old fun to try a new system. If you're anything like me you're going to have a blast figuring all the new rules and how your character concept fits into this new structure.

Yeah, I definitely like DMing 4E. It lets me do things that I can't do in 3.5 - not because I can't do it within the rules, but because I don't have time to do the homework. I can, using the computer programs, build boss encounters in 15 minutes.

And since I spend less time doing math, I get to spend more time making the encounters interesting.

My concerns with 4E are that it tends to boil skills down to high/low (roll 6 high before you roll 3 low: you win at talking!) and that people tend to think that the classes are their professions, and so they take the class which has the name that most closely reflects their character concept, not the class which mechanically fits their character concept. I have a cleric in my party that should be a bard, and in the game I'm playing in, someone is playing an avenger because their the backstory is their character wants revenge on someone.

Lord Raziere
2010-08-17, 12:19 AM
I have a cleric in my party that should be a bard, and in the game I'm playing in, someone is playing an avenger because their the backstory is their character wants revenge on someone.

those are not the norm.....it sounds like only your specific group with that problem.

I'm not gonna toss out any argument or opinion. Just fact: Wizard and clerics are no longer god, various classes no longer sucks, everything is more consistent and makes more sense. other than that, seems pretty much the same to me.

Yorrin
2010-08-17, 12:24 AM
those are not the norm.....it sounds like only your specific group with that problem.

I'm not gonna toss out any argument or opinion. Just fact: Wizard and clerics are no longer god, various classes no longer sucks, everything is more consistent and makes more sense. other than that, seems pretty much the same to me.

It was actually very common in the early days, when people were still getting used to the system.

Lord Raziere
2010-08-17, 12:30 AM
It was actually very common in the early days, when people were still getting used to the system.

however then again I only discovered 3.5 a few months before 4E came out so you can take my word with a grain of salt on anything 3.5

TooManyBadgers
2010-08-17, 12:33 AM
4e took all the things I wanted to do with 3.5 and then did them.

There wasn't a gaping divide between the classes that can and the classes that can't; there weren't the twisted horrible multiclassed monstrosities of 3.5; a DM isn't going to have to sit down and learn six unrelated mechanics for spellcasting, just to adjudicate a party; the game was designed as a game and things were good.

But looking at it -- and then playing it -- made me realize that I don't actually like D&D at all, regardless of fixes, desecrations or changes.

Reluctance
2010-08-17, 12:38 AM
Actually, I mostly noticed people wanting their 4e characters to fit the same niche that their 3.5 characters did, which won't happen any more than I can make a Shadowrun character who perfectly maps to my 3.5 character. As said in the first couple of replies, for all intents and purposes they're completely different games.

If you want a sample of what 4e is like, WotC has some free swag here (http://www.wizards.com/dnd/TryDnD.aspx). Get familiar with the basic structure, as things are different for a reason.

Mando Knight
2010-08-17, 01:07 AM
One thing I'm curious about is class creation. I've never done it, and because our next campaign is going to be 4e I'd like to ask about how complicated/customizable it is.
You don't in 4e, especially if you've never even made a 3.5 class. Do a bad job at creating a custom class, and it'll be cut & paste of an existing class, or not capable of fulfilling its job, or completely overpowered. Paragon Paths and Epic Destinies are easier to craft, since they have fewer powers each and more examples to follow, but WotC hasn't released a good guideline for making a full class.

Basically, yes. I'm adventurous like that. Besides, if I'm going into a new system I, at least, would like to fully explore the possibilities of said system.That's not really exploring the possibilities of the system, since the system hands the houserule and homebrew reins over to the DM and the DM alone, primarily for crafting together custom monsters. 4e classes are far more organic than 3.5's, essentially making you come up with the entire spell list each time you create a class (unless you're lazy), and pointing towards an unwritten balance that's mostly enforced by the DM and other players. (Hey, why does your custom Defender have the damage output of the Ranger in every power? Why does your Controller heal as well as a Cleric? What's up with this Striker that has better AC out of the box than the Paladin? And so forth)

If you want to get a feel for writing a 4e class, craft a Tome of Battle-style Initiator class, but write up all of its disciplines yourself, without making them strictly better or worse than an equivalent discipline from the Tome itself, or directly copying them.

Gravious
2010-08-17, 01:23 AM
Better to follow everyone's advice... guess I'll find myself a class then. Hmm. At some point I WILL try out class creation though. Very tempting to get involved in anything complicated. :P

Cadian 9th
2010-08-17, 01:51 AM
I was odd in my book aquisition. The first DnD book I got was the 3.5 Monster manual. Unaware of where this book came from, I didn't know about the PHB or all the other books. As a 10 year old, I reverse engineered the monsters, played mock battles, increased HD, had a blast.

I then picked up the 4th ed PHB. After introducing it to my friends I DMed for the first time before even playing. However, I had no DMs guide. I just made up monsters and events and we had a blast. Then we started to homebrew stuff, that was fun. We desired more complexity from our characters. It wasn't enough that Joe the paladin had learnt this similar swordstroke to Samm Grey's paladin. We introduced custom feats, backgrounds. We even moved to a 3.5 skill system without intention.

Then I picked up the PHB. A new world opened. I spent ages tinkering away with the PHB, debating about what was the best option, playing dungeoncrawls to see who could make the best characters. Then I also realised that the books linked. I could modify monsters, optimize them, play them as characters, understand them, use monster abilities.

Then, the Completes. The Tomes. The Sourcebooks. I am a pig in the mud, a fish in the ocean. So much options, so delicously complicated and fun.

I Started making 3.5b to transition my players across. I started DMing 3.5, found it so AWSOME, since there were rules to help me with everything, and I could create so much, I could do so much. I could just pull monsters from the MM, and just have an awsome story. I was better able to reward specialized players in subtle ways. I held their hand as they touched the waters of making an awsome character who was in every single way exactly theirs. No longer the generic ranger who picked this power or that power. This ranger is Sarom Deathbringer, a keen eyed elf who uses sneaking tactics and flawless acrobatics, with a pair of matched katanas, to cut a swathe through his enemies. He engages in difficult diplomacy, and breaths a sigh of relief that his investment into balancing has paid off and curses as he sees Sarom fail a jump check.

3.5 is awsome. Coming back to 4th ed made me feel rather cheated. I could break it so easily, but so could anyone else. The powers cheapened what I liked about classes, and I grew dispondent as I saw the "conversion" like the Divine feats and the Power attack, where its all balanced...

I don't want to feel balanced. I want to build an awsome character. I want to feel better than the enemy in situations. I want to have control over every single detail of my character. And If I don't like something and want to change to something more characterful, I can talk it over with my DM. I can multi-class, and use that to potray a more effective character.

Magic items feel useful, and I get that buzzing feeling when everything clicks together and this X Item interacts with Y class ability and Z feat to give the effect that I want for my character.

4e was I believe an attempt to appeal to a wider audience. Making DnD simpler, easier to pick up and play, easier to DM, losing some of that awsome intricacy and complexity, to make it appeal to the joe smith. A huge mistake in my opinion, with the following rationale: DnD is always going to be a niche hobby. DnD, no matter how simplified it is, still requires basic intellect, time, and has social consequences for people who want to be totally socially correct.

All in all, 3.5. is so much better on so many levels. It rocks as a toolkit, its so diverse, so damn HUGE. But. I know it is hard to learn. I know people (like me occasionally) break it. I know that it is overwhelmingly complex for people. But once you've gone in, you've learnt all the things you need, you start your first campaign, you start to understand just how much the system offers. Put anything into DnD, you'll get a bag of holding full of fun back. :smallwink:

Dr.Gunsforhands
2010-08-17, 01:55 AM
One thing I'm curious about is class creation. I've never done it, and because our next campaign is going to be 4e I'd like to ask about how complicated/customizable it is.

Well, you can't just eyeball it like you might have in 3.5, but once you get the hang of how the classes are balanced and pieced together, 4e is actually quite modular. The individual classes are divided up into build options that sometimes feel like different classes in themselves. (Well, relatively speaking. Coming in from 3.5, don't be surprised if everything feels kind of samey and constrained. There's a reason people have been telling you to put aside your conceptions of what the game is supposed to be.)

Player's Handbook 3 has the hybrid class rules, which pretty much lets you mix and match shticks from a pair of existing classes as you go. Between that, multiclass feats, and the fact that nobody so much as bats an eyelash when you reject the flavor text and substitute your own, it's pretty easy to throw together an unclassifiable character without technically making up a new class. Just leave whatever parts were involved in the fine print and write 'Killer Chef' at the top of the sheet.

Level8Mudcrab
2010-08-17, 05:49 AM
I've only played a little 3.5 but have played and DM'd a lot of 4e. I like the 4e system, I haven't had any real problems DMing and I've found houseruling stuff in is easy.

Boren
2010-08-17, 06:09 AM
{Scrubbed}

Leon
2010-08-17, 06:14 AM
If you go into it expecting what your used to in 3.5 your in for a shock.
Much like going to play Dawn of War 2 and expecting it to be like 1 - Totally different games but not too bad once you get over the shock of change.

hamishspence
2010-08-17, 06:20 AM
{Scrubbed}

It's been said many times. But the two aren't all that similar.

Even when a game does get translated to the computer, as with 2nd ed and Baldur's Gate, or 3rd ed and Neverwinter Nights- that doesn't mean the board game itself is bad.

I've played 4E and 3E and enjoyed both.

DeltaEmil
2010-08-17, 06:40 AM
3.X edition = World of Warcraft, with all its good and bad qualities.

4th edtion = Guild Wars, ease of play and focuses on team-work.

Kurald Galain
2010-08-17, 06:50 AM
I must say that <game> is much better than <other game>, because it's really the only system in which you can play <archetype> in a properly <adverb> fashion. I got quickly fed up with <other game> because it is so <adjective>, and it is too <gerund> for most players, to the point where everybody who plays it is really a <noun>.

Last week I was playing <game> with my friend <name> and <anecdote> happened, and then it went <preposition> and the <conjunctive> became totally <syllogism> with <pronoun>! We were all extremely <adjective>. This shows why <game> is really the best on the market, regardless of what anyone else says.

Don't be a <noun>, buy <game> today!

Renchard
2010-08-17, 08:28 AM
I must say that <game> is much better than <other game>, because it's really the only system in which you can play <archetype> in a properly <adverb> fashion. I got quickly fed up with <other game> because it is so <adjective>, and it is too <gerund> for most players, to the point where everybody who plays it is really a <noun>.

Last week I was playing <game> with my friend <name> and <anecdote> happened, and then it went <preposition> and the <conjunctive> became totally <syllogism> with <pronoun>! We were all extremely <adjective>. This shows why <game> is really the best on the market, regardless of what anyone else says.

Don't be a <noun>, buy <game> today!

Man, haters gotta hate.

Dragosai
2010-08-17, 08:49 AM
OK here it goes; my (might be long winded) post about 4E.

Going to start at 3E as there is no point in going back further since the OP is swapping from 3E to 4E, so I played 3.X since it came out. I was one of those D&D players that had played all the editions but stopped playing some time after AD&D 2nd and was playing other game systems when 3.0 came out. It came out was shiny and new, and my gamming friends at the time where happy to play as a break from our other games and a call back into the D&D style and play. I liked 3E fine but at the time there where little to no "splat" books, and we had not played high level at all yet. Fast forward a bit; my dislike of 3.X grows as my group is getting into more and more rules arguments at the table, or when we decide to start a new game character making starts and people get angry because of the choices people are making for classes/races/feats/etc. At this point in my 3.X gaming life I would be more than happy to swap to another system as I am a fan of many other and the above issues with 3.X are only getting worse. We stick with
3.X as the majority wants to and most of us, including me own several hundred dollars worth of books.

As time goes by my dislike of the system grows for all the reasons I think everyone on this thread knows; I will mention a few without detail so as not to beat a dead horse.
1) OMG imbalance in everything, and getting worse by every book release.
2) Any character without full caster progression becomes pointless to play.
3) Having to "play dumb" after level 9 so you don't either have a TPK every session or destroy the plot with one spell cast.

Fast forward to the first official announcements for 4E, even with my strong dislike of 3.5 most of our games are still fun as we just played low level games and tried to play with reasonable players and DM's that understood the wafer thin rules and would do their best to not break them so everyone could have fun. So I hear about 4E and my reaction is this; I own a lot of books for 3.5, my group are playing 3.5 and while it has a lot of problems it does the job ok as we have learned to play it a way as to cause less system grief on the game. So I made the decision that when the 4E PHB comes out I will buy it and read it with an open mind, BUT it MUST WOW me utterly or why would I want to go to a whole new system, buy all new books etc.

So I get my 4E PHB and within the first 10 pages I am utterly blown away by how thoroughly, and quickly the new rules address ALL of the lame **** that made 3.5 such a bad system, and fixed it all. I was blown away, it WOWed me, I started flipping through it looking for old rule to new comparisons and everyone was made better by 4E. Well that was it for me most of my group also had the same reaction, we play 4E now and our games are better than ever.

I can sure go into a lot more detail but I don't think it would help as edition wars are done, utterly done and there is really only one reason why the edition wars are done and it is thus; comparing 3.5/Pathfinder to 4E is insane. Now please understand I am not saying that 4E is the best and anyone who plays 3.5/Pathfinder is dumb. What I am saying is that 3.5/Pathfinder is so far apart from 4E that comparing them is not possible. I think the sooner everyone realizes this the better off we all can be. Comparing 3.5/Pathfinder to 4E is as insane as someone asking you to compare and find the better of a battle ship and the moon, or pizza to a lake, or a cow to TV. In other words if someone walked up to you and asked you to compare a cow to a TV and tell them which one is better you would understand you just spoke to a crazy person.

Why I came to this conclusion; I have NEVER seen/read/heard/experienced any argument against 4E that was not COMPLETLY wrong on every point, and not as a matter of opinion, as a matter of fact when one reads and understands the rules. I know I am going to catch hell for that statement, but it is still true. Every 4E nay sayer I have seen has been grossly misinformed and 99% of the time they are just people who are sad that their system of choice no longer has the support it once did. There are many, many examples and I will go into them if asked, but please letís move on as a community.

The bottom line is as always; play what you are having fun with.

My opinion is that 4E is the best set of rules for running/playing a fantasy type setting role playing game at this time. My reasons would make this post even longer so I will just give a few key points.

1) At no point in its level based design does the power level break the system/game wide open.
2) You do not have to be a min/maxer to make a mechanically good character.
3) There are no classes/races that are "dumb" choices or are the "win" choice.

Yeah many, many more but I will stop now.
To the OP I highly recommend changing to 4E, however if you are playing 3.5 and it you never, ok never might be too strong, letís say that 95% of the time you can play 3.5 and not have its system cause you/your group some kind of issue then stick with 3.5 and have fun.

dsmiles
2010-08-17, 08:50 AM
I love both 3.5 and 4e, and I can tell you one thing: I'm never going to DM 3.5 again. 4e is where it's at.

+1 to you, Silly Wizard.

@OP: Class creation is fairly easy. But EXTREMELY time consuming.

1. You dream up a class.
2. You pick the archetype and power source.
3. You pick the class that is closest to it in power level and abilities.
4. You make sure that the powers you are creating don't overpower said "standard" class. (For purposes of game balance, one class shouldn't be inherently superior to another, you want all classes to be equally appealing. One of the many reasons I will never go back to DMing 3.5, there is less game-breaking stupidity in 4e.)
5. You write the features and powers. (This is where you will spend the majority of the time, you've got 23 levels of powers to write (including the 3 paragon path powers), and approximately 3-5 powers per level to give the players some choice). This takes time.

I recently wrote a Lovecraftian controller (summoner/status effects), and even with the Call of Cthulhu RPG books, and the Cerebrant from Dragon Magazine, it took me about 8-10 hours to get all of the powers down, and that's not including the paragon path stuff. (I am taking a break from writing for a week or two, and playing WH40K: Fire Warrior for a while.)

hamishspence
2010-08-17, 08:53 AM
I recently wrote a Lovecraftian controller (summoner/status effects), and even with the Call of Cthulhu RPG books, and the Cerebrant from Dragon Magazine, it took me about 8-10 hours to get all of the powers down, and that's not including the paragon path stuff. (I am taking a break from writing for a week or two, and playing WH40K: Fire Warrior for a while.)

Is that one up on the homebrew forum? Sounds very interesting.

dsmiles
2010-08-17, 09:02 AM
Is that one up on the homebrew forum? Sounds very interesting.

Haven't posted it yet, I want to finish the Paragon Paths first, and post it all at once. Gimme 'till next Monday or so.

hamishspence
2010-08-17, 09:05 AM
Sounds yummy.

I saw an attempt at creating a Deep-One-tainted PC race for 4E, and a warlock pact for the Lords of the Deep, on EN-World, but it never really got off the ground.

This was it:

http://www.enworld.org/forum/4e-fan-creations-house-rules/280203-deep-project-deep-pact-warlocks-murr.html

dsmiles
2010-08-17, 09:09 AM
The power level is comparable to the wizard, fairly low damage output, heavy status effects for that variant, and the summons are decent even at lower levels...I wouldn't call them underwhelming like the summoner wizard's, but they're not so overwhelming that the summoner variant is the superior choice.

hamishspence
2010-08-17, 09:14 AM
Hmm- maybe the Cthulhu fans on the forum could put together a "4E Call of Cthulhu" homebrew book? I might try and design something.

Cthulhu could maybe be a Level 35 Solo monster- probably with the deity rules, including discorporation.

dsmiles
2010-08-17, 09:15 AM
Personally, I'm kind of already on the case. My campaign setting for 4e combines Iron Kingdoms and Call of Cthulhu (Steampunk and Dark Horror being my two favorite genres).

EDIT: So much for my week off from writing...

DARN YOU HAMISHSPENCE! DARN YOU TO HECK!

hamishspence
2010-08-17, 09:18 AM
Sounds good. I've seen it said that D&D and Cthulhu do not mix well- but I personally like the idea of D&D heroes going up against the Mythos.

Perhaps books like the Necronomicon could follow the Artifact rules- being pleased when the owner does things that bring them closer to the Mythos, and displeased when they try and distance themselves from it, and eventually "moving on"

Instead of writing, you could use the week to think about Cthulhu stuff, let it all brew up, and after a week, it'll have culminated in great ideas? :smallamused:

dsmiles
2010-08-17, 09:22 AM
No, I'm hot to write right now. Darn this whole "work" thing.

EDIT: Once it's finished, I'll upload it to Scribd, and link it in a discussion thread over in homebrew. I just don't want to post an entire campaign world piece-by-piece

nightwyrm
2010-08-17, 09:26 AM
You could use the disease track for sanity loss, although you'd probably need to replace endurance with some other skill, maybe insight or create a new "mental fortitude" skill. Perhaps even different creatures could inflict different forms of insanity or moving along the sanity track could give both advantages and disadvantages (you get a bonus to cast spells but have penalties to something else etc.).

AtlanteanTroll
2010-08-17, 09:27 AM
Never having plaed anything before 3.5 I can't say which feels more like the original, but my opinion is this.

4E is stream-lined to grab players and is more coabt focused than 3.5. Their's nothing stopping the DM from doing a good story to 4E though. The thing I don't like about it are the character classes. Since the've al become stream-lined, the all work the same. The Fighter and Druid are the exact same becuase all they do are have powers. The Druid's are called Spells, the Fighter's aren't.

I'm stil hoping for a 3.75, though, it's never going to happen :smallfrown:

dsmiles
2010-08-17, 09:31 AM
You could use the disease track for sanity loss, although you'd probably need to replace endurance with some other skill, maybe insight or create a new "mental fortitude" skill. Perhaps even different creatures could inflict different forms of insanity or moving along the sanity track could give both advantages and disadvantages (you get a bonus to cast spells but have penalties to something else etc.).

I'm actually tracking Sanity Points like Hit Points, but there are some effects that create permanent sanity loss.

In an effort not to further de-rail this thread, I'm going to back out of this discussion for now. If you want to discuss this more, PM me, or wait about a week and I'll start posting stuff over in the HB forums.

nightwyrm
2010-08-17, 09:31 AM
The thing I don't like about it are the character classes. Since the've al become stream-lined, the all work the same. The Fighter and Druid are the exact same becuase all they do are have powers. The Druid's are called Spells, the Fighter's aren't.


This is something I don't agree with. It's like saying wizards and clerics are the same coz they both use spells, or warblades and swordsages are the same coz they both use stances and manuvers, or all magic decks are the same coz they all use cards.

hamishspence
2010-08-17, 09:32 AM
Essentials will be releasing variants of classes, some of which will be less powers-based.

Plus, the psionic classes don't get dailies, and instead get power points, which can be spent to boost certain powers.

So 4E is already beginning to move away from "everyone uses powers the same way"

Pathfinder is an attempt to create a "3.75" but doesn't really fix much of the power disparity.

dsmiles
2010-08-17, 09:34 AM
Pathfinder is an attempt to create a "3.75" but doesn't really fix much of the power disparity.

I don't really think they fixed any of the power disparity, myself. In 3.5/PF magic was just too easy to break the game with, IMO.

Oracle_Hunter
2010-08-17, 09:34 AM
Also: before you start wigging out on "crazy rules stuff" just sit down and read the PHB I cover-to-cover. It's actually pretty well organized and you can skip the class sections entirely for the time being.

Don't trust what anyone tells you about the rules or whatnot - until you actually have a sense as for how 4e is organized, you'll only be hearing part of the story.

*activates thread ejector seat*

Worira
2010-08-17, 09:41 AM
I must say that <game> is much better than <other game>, because it's really the only system in which you can play <archetype> in a properly <adverb> fashion. I got quickly fed up with <other game> because it is so <adjective>, and it is too <gerund> for most players, to the point where everybody who plays it is really a <noun>.

Last week I was playing <game> with my friend <name> and <anecdote> happened, and then it went <preposition> and the <conjunctive> became totally <syllogism> with <pronoun>! We were all extremely <adjective>. This shows why <game> is really the best on the market, regardless of what anyone else says.

Don't be a <noun>, buy <game> today!

I question your argument.

dsmiles
2010-08-17, 09:44 AM
I question your question. :smalleek:

The Glyphstone
2010-08-17, 09:51 AM
Strawberry!

Demonix
2010-08-17, 10:07 AM
I'll start off by stating that I like 4th edition better than 3/3.5; It is easier to run, easier to DM, easier to make and balance custom adventures, etc. Basically, its just easier to RUN, and thats a big deal. 2nd edition wasnt that bad for making your own adventures, they just took time. 3/3.5 was just awful with the whole CR system that got more and more broken as the edition aged. 4th goes back to a straight numerical balancing system; this much xp = an avg encounter at y level.

That said, I have four issues that have kinda turned me and my friends off of it.

1) Low level rushing - I've encountered 2 out of 3 DMs who basically just rushed the players at low levels. What happens is they run a session with a bit of roleplay and somewhere between 1 and 4 battles. At the end of the session you gain a level.
NO! WRONG! By giving out xp so easily, you cheapen the achievements of the characters. If we're gonna play like that I'll stay home and play wizardry 8 and feel a greater sense of achievement and fun. Related to this is:

2) Repetitive combat at low levels - When I ran a campaign, the players were concerned that they were basically doing the same things in combat over and over; they were using the same powers. No one tried to swing on chandeliers, or use a rope + grappling hook combo to pull archers off of walls. The system leads players to believe that those actions are all they have. Would this be alleviated in higher level play, which is why DMs try rushing their characters?

3) Magic items - This one is personal preference, I liked how magic items were all the way up to 3.5. The ones in 4th edition just seem bland, mediocre. Maybe that is because I was trying to make up a list for a low level character, but still.

4) Errata - Dear god, this isn't software! Rules clarification to prevent cheese I can understand, but don't remove mid-level mechanics like minions AFTER the game came out! problems like this should have been caught in testing! You can't patch a book, so do it (mostly) right the first time.

In conclusion, I would like to play AND run 4th edition, but I can't find a campaign to play in or players to play in the campaign I created. I'm trying an experiment where I start a party off at 8-10th level or so to see if we cant alleviate problems 1, 2, and 3.

dsmiles
2010-08-17, 10:12 AM
@Demonix: Problems 1, and 2 are DM problems, not game system problems.

EDIT: I'm just not seeing problem 3 as a problem. This is what homebrew is for.

Problem 4 is a publisher problem, and you don't have to use the updates/errata, remember, "Rules are just guidelines."

Oracle_Hunter
2010-08-17, 10:24 AM
4) Errata - Dear god, this isn't software! Rules clarification to prevent cheese I can understand, but don't remove mid-level mechanics like minions AFTER the game came out! problems like this should have been caught in testing! You can't patch a book, so do it (mostly) right the first time.
...wait, what? :smallconfused:

Also: damn Edition Warz. I keep trying to get out, but they keep pullin' me back in! :smallfrown:

Still, the aggressive patching of 4e is beneficial for game design overall and fully integrated with all aspects of DDI. Since you can scoop up all of the new books and updated rules in a fully integrated form for $10, I don't see any downside to their patching strategy.

Gametime
2010-08-17, 10:39 AM
4E = World of Warcraft
if I wanted to play WoW I'd sit at my computer and play.

Having played 3.5, 4th, WoW, and a few variants on each fairly extensively, I'm always confused when this allegation comes up. Playing WoW isn't really anything like playing 4th edition. There are undeniably similarities, but they are all things that have been part of D&D (and heroic fantasy in general) since, at the latest, AD&D.

World of Warcraft borrows heavily from the vaguely shared fantasy cookbook that original D&D helped inspire. It's not even a little surprising that the two would appear superficially similar. Only 4th edition has the misfortune of coming out late enough to be accused of "copying" WoW.

The Glyphstone
2010-08-17, 11:21 AM
My favored joke in the early days of 4E when the WoW comparison came up was "No, they're very different. You can actually customize your characters in WoW.":smalltongue: It's not as applicable now with the deluge of splatbooks for options and classes and powers, but it was funny then.

arrowhen
2010-08-17, 11:25 AM
As far as I'm concerned, it doesn't matter what the book says; if I'm rolling a 20 sided die to kill monsters in a cave, I'm playing D&D.

CarpeGuitarrem
2010-08-17, 11:34 AM
As far as I'm concerned, it doesn't matter what the book says; if I'm rolling a 20 sided die to kill monsters in a cave, I'm playing D&D.
QFT, so much. I think that the biggest irony of the "it's not D&D" complaints is that these complaints were also leveled at 3.5, by the 2nd Edition players. D&D is not a set of rules, else there would only be one D&D--the original Chainmail.

I think people put too much expectation into the "essence" of D&D. The essence of D&D is far more than Vancian magic or freeform spells.

Erom
2010-08-17, 11:42 AM
Things I like about 4e:

* Combat is more interesting and tactically rich, ESPECIALLY for non-spellcasters.
* The character builder is liquid win. A month's subscription to DDI to unlock the builder is the 3rd most important "book" in the system, after the PHB and DMG.
* The classes are better balanced. Still not perfect, but I don't feel like PERFECT balance is necessary for a good game anyway.
* Although it's harder to homebrew a class, its much EASIER to homebrew monsters and NPCs - the adventure tools are awesome.
* Rules simplifications for the most part make sense and reduce tedium in the game. I thought Manhattan distances for AOE effects would bug me but it doesn't.
* Did I mention the character builder?

Things I don't like about 4e:

* Nearly all character follow the same pattern (X at-will abilities, Y encounters, Z dailys). Psionics began to break this. Hopefully the classes in the Essentials line will break it up further (Classes with no at-wills, just basic attacks but more powerful dailys, stuff like that.)
* There are a LOT of status ailments to keep track of. Does this -2 ATK expire at the end of my turn or at the beginning of your turn?
* Because NPCs don't follow the same rules as PC's, worldbuilding can get a little complex at times, because the published monsters are rarely PC races. So finding an X level dwarven cleric NPC or Enemy can be difficult. This is somewhat ameliorated by how easy it is to homebrew enemies with the adventure tools.

dsmiles
2010-08-17, 11:42 AM
As far as I'm concerned, it doesn't matter what the book says; if I'm rolling a 20 sided die to kill monsters in a cave, I'm playing D&D.


There are other systems that use a d20 to determine hit/miss probability.


Just thought I'd point that out. :smallwink:

Mando Knight
2010-08-17, 11:43 AM
Having played 3.5, 4th, WoW, and a few variants on each fairly extensively, I'm always confused when this allegation comes up. Playing WoW isn't really anything like playing 4th edition. There are undeniably similarities, but they are all things that have been part of D&D (and heroic fantasy in general) since, at the latest, AD&D.
If anything, I'm surprised I haven't seen more allegations that 4e isn't Dragon Quest. Player/monster HP/damage asymmetry, one main class per character, one attack per round without special abilities, etc.

Kaiser Omnik
2010-08-17, 11:44 AM
Don't we have one good reference thread we could point at for 4th edition reviews? Because these threads always turn into edition wars, and always have a few people repeating "This isn't D&D" and "This is WoW", thus not helping new potential players think by themselves, and insulting the intelligence of those who consider 4th edition a valuable game system.

Anyway, we're on a forum where some have argued that D&D 3.5 is the PERFECT rpg system, so the bias is pretty obvious.

The Glyphstone
2010-08-17, 11:46 AM
Don't we have one good reference thread we could point at for 4th edition reviews? Because these threads always turn into edition wars, and always have a few people repeating "This isn't D&D" and "This is WoW", thus not helping new potential players think by themselves, and insulting the intelligence of those who consider 4th edition a valuable game system.

Anyway, we're on a forum where some have argued that D&D 3.5 is the PERFECT rpg system, so the bias is pretty obvious.

Others have argued that 4E is the PERFECT rpg system, and there's several outspoken advocates of Unisystem and GURPS as the PERFECT rpg system. Your point?:smallconfused:

dsmiles
2010-08-17, 11:51 AM
Others have argued that 4E is the PERFECT rpg system, and there's several outspoken advocates of Unisystem and GURPS as the PERFECT rpg system. Your point?:smallconfused:

I don't think there is a perfect RPG system. It's all a matter of preference and play style.

Oracle_Hunter
2010-08-17, 11:51 AM
Don't we have one good reference thread we could point at for 4th edition reviews? Because these threads always turn into edition wars, and always have a few people repeating "This isn't D&D" and "This is WoW", thus not helping new potential players think by themselves, and insulting the intelligence of those who consider 4th edition a valuable game system.

Anyway, we're on a forum where some have argued that D&D 3.5 is the PERFECT rpg system, so the bias is pretty obvious.
Nope, no such thread. And trying to link to all of the threads which discuss 3.5 to 4 would result in melting the forum from the concentrated flaming.

So instead we have increasingly terse (but still polite) threads in which some peope give good advice (i.e. play the game and see if you like it) while ignoring anyone who decides to lob a couple of Grenades around (e.g. 4E = WoW LOL!) in hopes of sparking a greater conflagration.

Occasionally, we also digress into arguments regarding the clear superiority of strawberry ice cream to the base and degenerate chocolate ice cream. But those rarely end well.

dsmiles
2010-08-17, 11:54 AM
I resent you calling chocolate "base and degenerate"!
(GRENADE!!!! :smalltongue:)

Oracle_Hunter
2010-08-17, 11:55 AM
I resent you calling chocolate "base and degenerate"!
(GRENADE!!!! :smalltongue:)
I apologize to all that is base and degenerate on having associated those terms with chocolate :smallamused:

Renchard
2010-08-17, 11:57 AM
Occasionally, we also digress into arguments regarding the clear superiority of strawberry ice cream to the base and degenerate chocolate ice cream. But those rarely end well.
Chocolate desires a word with you in the alleyway.

Oracle_Hunter
2010-08-17, 11:58 AM
Chocolate desires a word with you in the alleyway.
Fitting.

That's where I would have expected to find chocolate hanging out :smallamused:

Jayabalard
2010-08-17, 12:03 PM
As far as I'm concerned, it doesn't matter what the book says; if I'm rolling a 20 sided die to kill monsters in a cave, I'm playing D&D.So, if you're playing the Palladium FRPG, you're playing D&D? If you're playing GURPS Fantasy with the alternate "use D20 instead of 3d6 for rolls" rule you're playing D&D? If you're playing Munchkin D20 you're playing D&D?

Personally, I think you're kind of overgeneralizing a tad.


Having played 3.5, 4th, WoW, and a few variants on each fairly extensively, I'm always confused when this allegation comes up. Playing WoW isn't really anything like playing 4th edition. There are undeniably similarities, but they are all things that have been part of D&D (and heroic fantasy in general) since, at the latest, AD&D.I think you've missed the point of the people making that comparison. They aren't talking about the superficial fantasy elements. The issue is much more with the mechanics, things like: the wide variety of strikes and abilities (at will powers), and especially with the idea of cooldowns (daily and encounter powers) that melee characters have.

If you look at a fighter fighter in OD&D, 1eAD&D, 2eAD&D, or 3eD&D, there's really nothing like the mechanics of a wow warrior other than autoattack. If you look at a 4e D&D fighter on the other hand compared to that same WoW warrior, there are a couple of striking similarities; the most obvious are abilities that can only be used every so often, ie encounter/daily powers vs abilities with cooldowns.

Also, across the board there's are abilities in 4e that are designed to allow "tanks" to control who is being hit by the enemies. That's something that's absent in earlier editions, but it's a fairly standard mechanic in MMORPGS.

Another similarity between 4e and MMORPGs: the design is very much focused on making all characters balanced. That's something that is very important in an online game where everyone is paying a monthly fee and you want everyone to be happy with their choice of character. And while there was a nod toward it in some earlier editions, for the most part the classes were what they were, and there were intentional imbalances in the game. For example 1e AD&D rogues and wizards of the same level were not the same power level (which is why they took different amounts of exp per level). In 4th edition this seems to have been a primary design goal, at least at the start, while in 1e this was a best a fairly minor design consideration.

Finally, the idea that 4e is patched on a regular basis via DDI, much like MMO's are released with the idea that they're going to be patched to fix problems in the game. While earlier editions had errata, there seems to have been a major shift in how much the designers can reasonably patch the game.

None of this necessarily means that it's a Bad Gametm (even though there are some people who mean it that way), but it seems kind of silly to say that 4e does not have any similarities with WoW.

Tiki Snakes
2010-08-17, 12:30 PM
The issue is much more with the mechanics, things like: the wide variety of strikes and abilities (at will powers), and especially with the idea of cooldowns (daily and encounter powers) that melee characters have.

If you look at a fighter fighter in OD&D, 1eAD&D, 2eAD&D, or 3eD&D, there's really nothing like the mechanics of a wow warrior other than autoattack. If you look at a 4e D&D fighter on the other hand compared to that same WoW warrior, there are a couple of striking similarities; the most obvious are abilities that can only be used every so often, ie encounter/daily powers vs abilities with cooldowns.


Just on this issue I'd like to point out that the idea of 'powers' with cooldowns or that can only be used so often has been pretty widespread in video games for quite some time now. I know it predates WoW at the very least because the same thing is present in Warcraft 3 even! :smallwink: It's also a large part of all MMORPG's that I've seen, and a large number of offline games also.

I honestly couldn't say what game or games would count as the originator of that particular idea, but it's really not got anything to do with Warcraft I suspect.

The Glyphstone
2010-08-17, 12:32 PM
I resent you calling chocolate "base and degenerate"!
(GRENADE!!!! :smalltongue:)

I would call you out on the field of honor, good sir, were it not widely known that supporters of chocolate do not even have 'honor' in their vocabulary.:smalltongue:

Gametime
2010-08-17, 12:34 PM
I think you've missed the point of the people making that comparison. They aren't talking about the superficial fantasy elements. The issue is much more with the mechanics, things like: the wide variety of strikes and abilities (at will powers), and especially with the idea of cooldowns (daily and encounter powers) that melee characters have.

If you look at a fighter fighter in OD&D, 1eAD&D, 2eAD&D, or 3eD&D, there's really nothing like the mechanics of a wow warrior other than autoattack. If you look at a 4e D&D fighter on the other hand compared to that same WoW warrior, there are a couple of striking similarities; the most obvious are abilities that can only be used every so often, ie encounter/daily powers vs abilities with cooldowns.

But cooldowns existed in 3.5, and to a lesser extent in earlier editions. Per day abilities are on a cooldown. Rage is on a cooldown. For that matter, WoW neither invented nor codified the concept of abilities that can only be used ever so often, so complaining that this element is too much like WoW misses the point anyway.


Also, across the board there's are abilities in 4e that are designed to allow "tanks" to control who is being hit by the enemies. That's something that's absent in earlier editions, but it's a fairly standard mechanic in MMORPGS.

Absent aside from abilities that allowed one to control where enemies moved, anyway. 3.5 had several feats and class abilities that forced enemies to attack you, and several more than prevented them from moving freely. More broadly, the idea of attacks of opportunity is essentially there so tanks can stand in front of the squishy wizard without just being strolled by. More broadly still, the expected paradigm of beefy physical fighters that protected the weaker and arguably more dangerous casters was present from the very beginning of D&D, well before it was mechanically enshrined in the rules, and to treat the existence of tanks as a paradigm shift is misinformed at best.


Another similarity between 4e and MMORPGs: the design is very much focused on making all characters balanced. That's something that is very important in an online game where everyone is paying a monthly fee and you want everyone to be happy with their choice of character. And while there was a nod toward it in some earlier editions, for the most part the classes were what they were, and there were intentional imbalances in the game. For example 1e AD&D rogues and wizards of the same level were not the same power level (which is why they took different amounts of exp per level). In 4th edition this seems to have been a primary design goal, at least at the start, while in 1e this was a best a fairly minor design consideration.

That's a bit misleading. Balance among characters was the goal in 3.5, too; Wizards just did a pretty poor job of it. Balance was even arguably the goal in AD&D; the fact that the classes took different amounts of experience to level was introduced as a balancing mechanism! The only difference is that one system tries to make sure that all characters of a certain level are broadly equal, and the other ignores level equivalency but maintains experience equivalency. It boils down to the same result: characters in a party advance at roughly the same rate of power acquisition.

I'd agree that balance is a more prominent design concern in 4e, but it isn't as though it was absent from earlier editions.


Finally, the idea that 4e is patched on a regular basis via DDI, much like MMO's are released with the idea that they're going to be patched to fix problems in the game. While earlier editions had errata, there seems to have been a major shift in how much the designers can reasonably patch the game.

Sure, but the line between "acceptable RPG errata" and "ZOMG PATCH NOTES" seems to be fundamentally arbitrary. There is undeniably more errata for 4th than for earlier editions; there was also undeniably more errata for 3.5 than for the editions before it. I don't think that necessary makes it inarguably MMO-like. (As a thought experiment, if Wizards released a massive amount of errata that transformed the 4th ruleset in the 1st edition AD&D ruleset, would 4th be more like an MMO because more errata had been released or less like one because it now resembled a ruleset that is very obviously different from MMOs?)


None of this necessarily means that it's a Bad Gametm (even though there are some people who mean it that way), but it seems kind of silly to say that 4e does not have any similarities with WoW.

I didn't say it doesn't have similarities with WoW. I said (or meant, at least) that the similarities are either irrelevant or older than 4th. Limited use abilities, attempted character balance, and errata released for the sake of achieving that balance are not qualities unique or mutually exclusive with either tabletop or video-games.

arrowhen
2010-08-17, 01:20 PM
Actually, even the d20 is optional, as long as the killing monsters in a cave is there. D&D is as much a style of gameplay as it is a game. I've played plenty of "D&D" using GURPS, OWoD, Risus, etc.

Vitruviansquid
2010-08-17, 03:07 PM
I don't get why people rip on 4e for being too close to WoW.

WoW is a terribly fun game that a terribly large number of people play, its mechanics are very excellent, and for a long time now, the dungeons and monsters have been terribly varied and interesting.

potatocubed
2010-08-17, 03:39 PM
I think the reason 4e feels a bit videogamey - not so much like WoW but more like Final Fantasy Tactics or so - is because of the total separation of game mechanics and world fluff.

Jayabalard
2010-08-17, 04:28 PM
Just on this issue I'd like to point out that the idea of 'powers' with cooldowns or that can only be used so often has been pretty widespread in video games for quite some time now. I know it predates WoW at the very least because the same thing is present in Warcraft 3 even! :smallwink: It's also a large part of all MMORPG's that I've seen, and a large number of offline games also.

I honestly couldn't say what game or games would count as the originator of that particular idea, but it's really not got anything to do with Warcraft I suspect.Certainly, but the "4e D&D = WoW" is really just another way of saying "4e D&D is video gamey" .


And while you can point your finger at earlier editions and say "X existed in Y edition D&D" I think that it's kind of undeniable that all of the things that I mention have become far more prevalent in the current edition.

So sure, there were per day abilities in OD&D, but other than spells these were few and far between. In 4e, not only does everyone have daily abilities, they also all have per encounter abilities. Non-casters all have abilities that are more complicated than "I hit it with my axe".

Sure, there was some thought to balance in OD&D, but it wasn't the same sort of driving design focus that it was in 4e. It was expected that different classes would have different levels of power rather than everyone has the same power level.

Sure, there was errata and new editions put out, but it wasn't all that common; I'm actually kind of curious about this myself, and think that it'd be kind of interested to see a list of all of the errata for 1e AD&D compared to the list of errata for 4e.

Sure, the archetype of the beefy fighter who protected the weaker casters existed in 1e AD&D, but there were no mechanics that allowed that tank to actually tank. In 4e, there are a slew of abilities related to this, controlling enemy movement, friendly movement, etc for controlling who the enemy can and does hit.


Actually, even the d20 is optional, as long as the killing monsters in a cave is there. D&D is as much a style of gameplay as it is a game. I've played plenty of "D&D" using GURPS, OWoD, Risus, etc.You know, I could make the same argument that and say I've also played D&D in my car, because that's what happens when I turn on my radio and listen to music (since they're both forms of entertainment).

You're grossly overgeneralizing the situation.

Gametime
2010-08-17, 05:37 PM
You know, I could make the same argument that and say I've also played D&D in my car, because that's what happens when I turn on my radio and listen to music (since they're both forms of entertainment).

You're grossly overgeneralizing the situation.

I don't want to speak for him, but what I got out of his post was that the qualities that define "D&D" are incredibly subjective. Saying that a new edition which uses the same core mechanic "isn't D&D" is itself a meaningless statement, because what D&D is can't be satisfactorily defined for the entire group of people that purport to enjoy D&D.

For a lot of people, 4th edition feels different from previous editions but still very much in the spirit of Dungeons & Dragons. For a lot of other people, the differences are too extreme and it ruins the "feel" for them. For others still, the problem isn't that it "isn't D&D" but just that they don't like the way it plays (or, often, that they like the way other editions play better).

All the above viewpoints, and about a million others, are perfectly valid. They're subjective, and emotional, and opinionated, and that's fine. I don't expect everyone to enjoy the same mechanics and aesthetics that I do. Occasionally, though, people express their opinions in ways that make them sound like facts, and argumentative folks like myself can't help but respond to that with an objection of some kind.

Fuzzie Fuzz
2010-08-17, 05:39 PM
Non-casters all have abilities that are more complicated than "I hit it with my axe".

And this is a bad thing how? Seems to me that a game should be fun for all involved, and I for one don't find round after round of "I stab it" much fun.

dsmiles
2010-08-17, 05:56 PM
And this is a bad thing how? Seems to me that a game should be fun for all involved, and I for one don't find round after round of "I stab it" much fun.

+1 (obligatory text)

Kurald Galain
2010-08-17, 06:04 PM
And this is a bad thing how? Seems to me that a game should be fun for all involved, and I for one don't find round after round of "I stab it" much fun.
Perhaps surprisingly, there are quite a lot of players that precisely enjoy round after round of "I stab it". More to the point, one of the strengths of earlier editions is that they catered both to players who like "easy" classes (e.g. the fighter) and to players who like "complex" classes (e.g. the druid). 4E has no class as easy as the 1E-3E fighter, nor any class as complex as the 1E-3E druid. I've seen several players being quite overwhelmed by the difficulty and learning curve required to pick up 4E - after all, it is one of the more rules-heavy RPGs on the market.

WOTC has recently learned this lesson, and fixing this is one of the major design reasons behind the upcoming 4.4 release: it precisely has a fighter that gets no encounter or daily attacks, and is expected to do a Melee Basic each and every round. This means that the people who want that can now join in, and the people who don't want that can simply pick another character type.

Oracle_Hunter
2010-08-17, 06:07 PM
WOTC has recently learned this lesson, and fixing this is one of the major design reasons behind the upcoming 4.4 release: it precisely has a fighter that gets no encounter or daily attacks, and is expected to do a Melee Basic each and every round. This means that the people who want that can now join in, and the people who don't want that can simply pick another character type.
*cough*

You neglect to mention that the DDE Fighter has stances which alter the effect of its MBAs, and that players can switch stances within a combat.

It's a highly simplified class, to be sure, but it's still more than a "stand and hit" 3.5 Fighter.

Kurald Galain
2010-08-17, 06:22 PM
It's a highly simplified class, to be sure, but it's still more than a "stand and hit" 3.5 Fighter.
Sure, but not every 3E fighter is "stand and hit" either: he can also be a trippomancer, dungeon crasher, multiclassed to rogue, or compelled to memorize the grappling rules. I don't think a 4.4 fighter is any more complex than that, really.

The point is that yes, there are players that enjoy a simpler kind of class than the 4E PHB has to offer.

A while ago, some players complained that the PHB had too few true illusion spells; so WOTC learned from that, and printed a bunch in Arcane Power. I think this is pretty much the same: players want option X, so WOTC prints a new book containing option X.

oxybe
2010-08-17, 06:23 PM
personally, 4th ed solved many problems i had with 3rd ed. while 4th isn't perfect, to me it's a good step towards a better D&D. is it a departure from previous editions? yes. but then again 3rd ed was quite a departure from 2nd.

and honestly? i hope that 5th ed is a radical departure from 3rd AND 4th. 4th ed kept the things i liked from 3rd (the standardized d20 roll and the idea of skills) and refined other (the skills and class structure).

many problems i had with 3rd ed were not simply houserule-able and required an overhaul of the system:

-the strength of spellcasters due to their versatility for one and that many spells emulate or override non-spellcasting options.
-the lack of option of the martial-types.
-the fact that several trap options existed for the sake of system mastery
-combat being a rocket tag at the lower and higher levels of the game
-combat for a non-caster being little more then "charge>full attack>full attack> full attack> next target, repeat"
-35+ skills, a bad skill point distribution system (varies by class and usually not enough points for many) in a non-skill based game.
-the monster/PC rules that somewhat work the same (same overall framework, but any given 10 HD monster is not the same as a 10 level PC), which is compounded by the fact that a 10HD monster with 5 caster levels is not the same as a 10HD monster with 5 martial levels (a level 5 caster ability VS level 15 PC is a no-challenge).
-no real incentive to stay in some classes as they are too front-loaded, etc...

among other things.

4th ed solve this by scrapping things entirely and reworking them.
-all classes are built off the same framework but rarely play the same, even in the same niche. play a rogue as you will a warlock and you'll probably get smoked.
-"casters" now work off the same mechanics as "non-casters" which makes it easier to handle and distribute what they can and cannot do among other classes for different archetypes.
-the skill list has been fusioned together and is spread out among classes more, making characters more skilled and more overall options available
-rider effects on attacks and the lack of a "full attack" option (most attacks are "standard action") create a more dynamic and interactive combat.

3rd ed has honestly become too aggravating for me to consider as my main fantasy system. i'll play it, but not because i like the system more then others available, but because the group makes the main part (the Roleplay in RPG) enjoyable, which is what counts the most, but i would honestly enjoy the Game part of RPG more with 4th ed.

arrowhen
2010-08-17, 06:45 PM
My main disappointment with 4e is that WotC still hasn't delivered on the virtual tabletop they promised so long ago.

Tiki Snakes
2010-08-17, 06:49 PM
My main disappointment with 4e is that WotC still hasn't delivered on the virtual tabletop they promised so long ago.

Yeah, the fact that the recession claimed most of the adventure tools and finished off the virtual tabletop is pretty sad. :smallfrown:

kyoryu
2010-08-17, 07:09 PM
Yeah, the fact that the recession claimed most of the adventure tools and finished off the virtual tabletop is pretty sad. :smallfrown:

Yeah, but MapTool at least seems like a viable tool...

arrowhen
2010-08-17, 07:23 PM
What Maptool doesn't have that WotC's offering was supposed to is a *lobby* where those of us with erratic schedules could find last minute pickup games. I'd happily pay a monthly fee for that, and I know others who would too.

Surrealistik
2010-08-17, 07:26 PM
Like em both. Slightly prefer 4e for its far superior balance and streamlining.

oxybe
2010-08-17, 07:33 PM
Yeah, the fact that the recession claimed most of the adventure tools and finished off the virtual tabletop is pretty sad. :smallfrown:

i'm pretty sure what claimed the tools (all this is second or third hand information, so take with a grain of salt) is that:

A) the PR department didn't really know what they were talking about and promised too much from the get-go

B) the original devs of the tools were an outsourced company, rather then an internal one and failed to deliver the goods. these guys were then booted and a new internal group had to be formed.

Cadian 9th
2010-08-17, 07:35 PM
I would like to point out to all the people who complain about 3.5. being broken that there are very very few instances when this comes into effect.

Seriously. How many of you are in a 3.5. game now, how many of you are in more than one? Just how many of your games involving "broken" characters that just dominate everything and make it so horribly unbalanced?

I am in more than 16 games at the moment. There are 3 of them where characters are "broken". One of them is the Neverending dungeon, a solo dungeon crawl. One of them is the Tower of Deadly Evil, a high cheese gestalt feat heavy team dungeoncrawl. The final is the arena, a high cheese PvP.

Even in the games where I've got/am a druid/wizard or cleric/whatever, there is no "OMG BROKEN". People just don't play broken things, because people have restraint.

And I concur with a post a few pages back. Since when did a fighter character in 3.5. just be restricted to "hit". If you see people playing, they enjoy that. They move around, they feel tactical. You don't need a "Serpent Strike" to make you feel like you're doing one of the two things.

The fighter can be the "I just hit simply" character. Or he can do so much more, depending on the players choice. Grapple. Trip. Weapons. Climbing and fighting, tumbling, disarming, sunder, overun. Spring attack (despite how hard it is to use), Shot on the run, rapid shot.

Make no mistake. I have played 4th ed. I enjoyed it. I enjoy 3.5. so much more.

Kaun
2010-08-17, 07:40 PM
I would like to point out to all the people who complain about 3.5. being broken that there are very very few instances when this comes into effect.

Seriously. How many of you are in a 3.5. game now, how many of you are in more than one? Just how many of your games involving "broken" characters that just dominate everything and make it so horribly unbalanced?

I am in more than 16 games at the moment. There are 3 of them where characters are "broken".

Have you considered the possibility that maybe you can't see the forest for the trees?

AtlanteanTroll
2010-08-17, 07:42 PM
See, people say Essentials will make the classes different. I don't want to buy a crap-load of splat-books to fix every class.

Cadian 9th
2010-08-17, 07:47 PM
Have you considered the possibility that maybe you can't see the forest for the trees?

Yes, I have. The wider picture, I guess you're driving at. Out of all the 4th ed books, I ended up with PHB, PHB 2 and the other one, MM, and DMG.

Please elaborate. I am not a fanboy. I just see the merits of one element to be suiting me as a player more. I don't hate 4th ed.

Kaun
2010-08-17, 07:52 PM
Yes, I have. The wider picture, I guess you're driving at. Out of all the 4th ed books, I ended up with PHB, PHB 2 and the other one, MM, and DMG.

Please elaborate. I am not a fanboy. I just see the merits of one element to be suiting me as a player more. I don't hate 4th ed.

Sorry i was more meaning with the broken stuff in 3.5e.

When i play 3.5 i notice the broken factor is not as visable because so much of what is not viable is cast aside and not considered.

Lord Raziere
2010-08-17, 08:02 PM
personally, 4th ed solved many problems i had with 3rd ed. while 4th isn't perfect, to me it's a good step towards a better D&D. is it a departure from previous editions? yes. but then again 3rd ed was quite a departure from 2nd.

and honestly? i hope that 5th ed is a radical departure from 3rd AND 4th. 4th ed kept the things i liked from 3rd (the standardized d20 roll and the idea of skills) and refined other (the skills and class structure).

many problems i had with 3rd ed were not simply houserule-able and required an overhaul of the system:

-the strength of spellcasters due to their versatility for one and that many spells emulate or override non-spellcasting options.
-the lack of option of the martial-types.
-the fact that several trap options existed for the sake of system mastery
-combat being a rocket tag at the lower and higher levels of the game
-combat for a non-caster being little more then "charge>full attack>full attack> full attack> next target, repeat"
-35+ skills, a bad skill point distribution system (varies by class and usually not enough points for many) in a non-skill based game.
-the monster/PC rules that somewhat work the same (same overall framework, but any given 10 HD monster is not the same as a 10 level PC), which is compounded by the fact that a 10HD monster with 5 caster levels is not the same as a 10HD monster with 5 martial levels (a level 5 caster ability VS level 15 PC is a no-challenge).
-no real incentive to stay in some classes as they are too front-loaded, etc...

among other things.

4th ed solve this by scrapping things entirely and reworking them.
-all classes are built off the same framework but rarely play the same, even in the same niche. play a rogue as you will a warlock and you'll probably get smoked.
-"casters" now work off the same mechanics as "non-casters" which makes it easier to handle and distribute what they can and cannot do among other classes for different archetypes.
-the skill list has been fusioned together and is spread out among classes more, making characters more skilled and more overall options available
-rider effects on attacks and the lack of a "full attack" option (most attacks are "standard action") create a more dynamic and interactive combat.



this. all of this. this man speaks truth. have a cookie, sir.

Cadian 9th
2010-08-17, 08:05 PM
Sorry i was more meaning with the broken stuff in 3.5e.

When i play 3.5 i notice the broken factor is not as visable because so much of what is not viable is cast aside and not considered.

I know there are lots of broken things in 3.5, I play a lot of them in arena and NED etc. High cheese optimization challenges. That is an accepted medium to play broken things.

You've hit the nail on the head with the fact that people don't play samurai or whatever or take alertness. That could be viewed as a flaw in 3.5. At least there is the option. 4th ed has its stupid stuff that noone take too. Weapon Focus? Dark Fire and all that, giving you +1 damage with situational powers. There are dudd powers and dud magic items. We know this.

4th ed is nice in some ways, but not as an experienced Roleplayer such as myself. 4th ed has some cool things in it, which I've taken and put into 3.5: For example, some rituals were pretty cool. The challenge class features (for pali and fighter) were pretty cool.

arrowhen
2010-08-17, 08:09 PM
See, people say Essentials will make the classes different. I don't want to buy a crap-load of splat-books to fix every class.

You might want to avoid 3.5 then. :smallbiggrin:

AtlanteanTroll
2010-08-17, 08:16 PM
You might want to avoid 3.5 then. :smallbiggrin:

I. Well. Let's see if I can explain.

I like the 3.5 Core, I don't like the 4E Core. I buy 3.5 splat because it enriches the expirience. Essentials, which may fix my expirience is, well, fixing something thats broken. 3.5 splat is enriching something I already enjoy.

ImperiousLeader
2010-08-17, 08:48 PM
I sometimes miss 3.5. I miss the wacky subsystems, I never got to play a Totemist or a Martial Adept or a Psion (and I wanted to). But I DMed 3.5, and vowed "never again", it was 4e that managed to get me back into the DMs chair. So, 4e I can play or DM, 3.5 I will only play, and most DMs have insanely long ban lists due to 3.5's balance issues, which means I won't get to play what I missed in 3.5. So why bother?


See, people say Essentials will make the classes different. I don't want to buy a crap-load of splat-books to fix every class.

1. Essential is not "fixing" classes, it's offering new options for existing classes. This isn't 3e to 3.5 ... you couldn't have a 3.5 ranger and a 3e ranger in the same party because of major changes in balance and skills. In 4e, you can have an Essentials Fighter in the same party as a PHB1 only fighter, and both are viable characters.

2. The reason these books are called "Essential" is that they offer a new way to enter DnD. So if you haven't bought any 4e books at all, you can start with Essentials products and play or DM 4e. Essentials provides a gateway for new players, as well as new material for existing players.

AtlanteanTroll
2010-08-17, 09:23 PM
1. Essential is not "fixing" classes, it's offering new options for existing classes. This isn't 3e to 3.5 ... you couldn't have a 3.5 ranger and a 3e ranger in the same party because of major changes in balance and skills. In 4e, you can have an Essentials Fighter in the same party as a PHB1 only fighter, and both are viable characters.

2. The reason these books are called "Essential" is that they offer a new way to enter DnD. So if you haven't bought any 4e books at all, you can start with Essentials products and play or DM 4e. Essentials provides a gateway for new players, as well as new material for existing players.

I have, sadly, already bought the 4E core (along with the PHB2). I am not buying more. 4E seems to be in it for the money, and nothing else.

PairO'Dice Lost
2010-08-17, 09:28 PM
I agree with whoever said that they like 4e as a game but don't get what they want from D&D out of it. Not that it isn't D&D, not that it's video-gamey (whatever that's supposed to mean), just that all the different subsystems, the world-shaping Vancian magic, and other D&Disms are why I play D&D specifically; if I just wanted "a fantasy game" there are many others I could choose (GURPs Fantasy is more uniform and customizable, Riddle of Steel is more gritty and pseudo-historical, etc.).

The major point of contention I've seen from the DM's perspective--that 3e takes too long to prep for and prepping for 4e games is incredibly easy--I've fortunately not run into yet and don't anticipate encountering any time soon, as I tend to DM on the fly, which works in any system given a certain degree of system mastery. In fact, I'm currently running two 12th level games and one 8th level game here on the forum without notes, maps, or even books because my computer died, all improvised and all from memory (my epic game not so much, but hey, it's epic :smallwink:), so I definitely take exception to the idea that DMing 3e is a time-consuming chore and 4e is a breeze. Like everything else, it's much more dependent on player/DM skill than system, though some systems help in that respect and some hinder.

Lhurgyof
2010-08-17, 09:34 PM
I don't get why people rip on 4e for being too close to WoW.

WoW is a terribly fun game that a terribly large number of people play, its mechanics are very excellent, and for a long time now, the dungeons and monsters have been terribly varied and interesting.

"Let's go grind monsters for hours on end, in hopes that we reach level 80 within the month."

Warcraft was fun, for a little while. All that I like about it is the PvP; and even that died for me. I've heard that the game picks up at level 80, but do I really have to suffer through the game before it gets good?

tcrudisi
2010-08-17, 10:06 PM
I would like to point out to all the people who complain about 3.5. being broken that there are very very few instances when this comes into effect.

Seriously. How many of you are in a 3.5. game now, how many of you are in more than one? Just how many of your games involving "broken" characters that just dominate everything and make it so horribly unbalanced?

Even in the games where I've got/am a druid/wizard or cleric/whatever, there is no "OMG BROKEN". People just don't play broken things, because people have restraint.

To answer your first question, I am not in any 3.5 games currently. Why not? Well, that's because of your next paragraph:

Every 3.5 game I played in, one of us broke a character. Just one though, and the rest of us played second fiddle. It was never the same player in back-to-back games, but one of us always broke a character. Whether it was a shifter that got 30+ attacks for something like 1d6+32 damage each or a Wizard that did it, one player always broke the game. Now, this was mostly fine, since we all took our turns doing it (an unspoken agreement), but it did make the games a lot less dynamic and fun than 4e, in my opinion.

Now, I would still be playing 3.5, mind you, had it not been or my last game. I sat down at a new table and the DM had made the mistake of saying that we could use any character creation we wanted. Since it was a new game, I didn't want to be that guy, so I created a Duskblade. Someone else came with a Druid/Wizard ... uh, sorry my memory just slipped: the thing where you go up as both classes at the same time, and it's not multi-classing. (Wow, it's amazing how quickly I forget information when I'm not using it.) Anyway, after playing a couple of sessions and seeing this guy at the table, I start to get suspicious. I tell him, "You know, there's a hypothetical build out there that uses a lot of the things you have/are called Pun-Pun."

His reply? "Yeah, my friend showed it to me, so I decided to play it."

OMG WTF DUDE SERIOUSLY WTH? Okay, still to this day I get pissed off when I remember that conversation. Thank god he didn't know about the level 1 version or I'm sure he would have just started as Pun-Pun. I can't friggin' believe it: a player sits down at a new table and brings Pun-Pun?! No friggin' way! Goodness gracious!

I'm still a bit peeved. I left that session and never came back. I also have not played 3.5 since.

So, my experience was obviously much different than yours: I saw 3.5 broken pretty much every game I played, although that last one overstepped every gentleman's agreement boundaries that I ever imagined. So while my evidence is anecdotal (much as yours is), mine shows that people do not have restraint. Having it within the system is golden, to me.

ImperiousLeader
2010-08-17, 10:09 PM
I have, sadly, already bought the 4E core (along with the PHB2). I am not buying more. 4E seems to be in it for the money, and nothing else.

Yes, WOTC is an evil money grubbing corporation, while every other company is in the business of making RPGs out of the kindness of their hearts. :annoyed:

I'd sooner level that complaint against "cut-and-paste-Pathfinder Paizo". Which I don't, btw.

kyoryu
2010-08-17, 10:09 PM
What Maptool doesn't have that WotC's offering was supposed to is a *lobby* where those of us with erratic schedules could find last minute pickup games. I'd happily pay a monthly fee for that, and I know others who would too.

Point. I'd pay a monthly fee for that. Hrm... if there's a market, maybe I could make one...

At any rate, I like 4e enough so far, and I've played everything from the Basic Boxed Set (Keep on the Borderlands ftw) up through 4e now. They're all a bit different, but they're all identifiably D&D compared to GURPS or another system.

darkpuppy
2010-08-17, 10:16 PM
Well, this is always gonna be a toughy, because, as has been noted before, everybody has their favourites. For example, I went into a week-long rage when what was then TSR decided to scrap Alternity, a system that I still believe rocks the dragon to its god-damn core... But nonetheless, here's my two cents on the subject:

As quite a few have already said, if you're expecting DnD as posters around my age and older knew it... you're dead wrong. It's almost a completely different game, and this was the main reason players like myself didn't like it. When I'd heard that the 4E forgotten realms was 150 years in the future from previous editions (which had followed a fairly consistent timeline), I was horrified. This pretty much sums up my feelings on the whole thing. I'm sure, as a game, it's fun, but you'll not see me leaving 3.X for several reasons...

...Firstly, one thing that wasn't fixed with the new edition was something that, I freely admit, can't be helped with a business: Too many damn books. In 3.5, one of my sourcebooks requires a good 12 or 13 books to use to its fullest, many of which (Magic of Incarnum being the perfect example) I would not touch with a ten foot bargepole. Similarly, there were two PHBs, which left me, as a DM, a bit out in the cold. Yes, PHB2 only had extra stuff, but, by damn, it was useful stuff I still wanted... and 4E definitely didn't change that.

The very short version of what I have to say about 4E is this: It's D20 Modern, but Fantasy. Oddly, this move made 4E suck for me, and Star Wars Saga Edition rock, whereas, in the previous version, the reverse was true. Yes, the rules are, by and large, more streamlined, but its extreme emphasis on tactical combat left me, a character roleplayer and story based GM, out in the cold. As petty as this may seem, the artwork was far too gaudy for my taste, and my horror as impractical armour after impractical armour went past just grew and grew. The monsters hadn't changed too much, in that many of their challenge ratings were askew, but, overall, I disliked this new version so intensely that I have never gone near it since. It seemed to yell at me "FIGHT! PLAY! MAKE SPECTACULARNESS FOR ME!" so hard, that I was actually turned off, compared to the thoughts I have whenever I play 3.5E, which usually go along the lines of "Okay, GM, what new cunning trick have the players come up with? Let's find out together..."

Again, keep in mind that this is just my opinion. Those of you who enjoy 4E, by all means, have fun... I mean, heck, that's the whole point, no? But myself, I don't see myself having fun with 4E, and have thus shunned it like a gossip journo.

The Glyphstone
2010-08-17, 10:35 PM
Not to derail the thread more than temporarily, but to the above - what sourcebook are you referring to that required Magic of Incarnum to use? I wasn't aware of any support for Incarnum outside of MoI and some web enhancements, or any official campaign setting book that contained it in a starring or even support role.

TooManyBadgers
2010-08-17, 10:38 PM
Not to derail the thread more than temporarily, but to the above - what sourcebook are you referring to that required Magic of Incarnum to use? I wasn't aware of any support for Incarnum outside of MoI and some web enhancements, or any official campaign setting book that contained it in a starring or even support role.
I'm going to guess Dragon Magic. It's the one splatbook which has support for pretty much everything, including some [rather poorly done] Dragon-themed soulmelds.

Caphi
2010-08-17, 10:40 PM
Anyway, after playing a couple of sessions and seeing this guy at the table, I start to get suspicious. I tell him, "You know, there's a hypothetical build out there that uses a lot of the things you have/are called Pun-Pun."

His reply? "Yeah, my friend showed it to me, so I decided to play it."

This is a problem with the person, not the system.

Also, gestalt is a game mode, not a character option, for reasons that should be obvious.

Kaun
2010-08-17, 10:51 PM
Yes, the rules are, by and large, more streamlined, but its extreme emphasis on tactical combat left me, a character roleplayer and story based GM, out in the cold. As petty as this may seem, the artwork was far too gaudy for my taste, and my horror as impractical armour after impractical armour went past just grew and grew. The monsters hadn't changed too much, in that many of their challenge ratings were askew, but, overall, I disliked this new version so intensely that I have never gone near it since. It seemed to yell at me "FIGHT! PLAY! MAKE SPECTACULARNESS FOR ME!" so hard, that I was actually turned off, compared to the thoughts I have whenever I play 3.5E, which usually go along the lines of "Okay, GM, what new cunning trick have the players come up with? Let's find out together..."

Again, keep in mind that this is just my opinion. Those of you who enjoy 4E, by all means, have fun... I mean, heck, that's the whole point, no? But myself, I don't see myself having fun with 4E, and have thus shunned it like a gossip journo.

This PoV i find interesting.

Before i go any further i just wan't to point out you should play what you like as long as your having fun.

But...

If the art work is realy an issue could it not just be ignored?

4e hasn't stoped you from doing most things you could do in 3.5e especially when it came to fluff, story and game type. It basicly just gave you a more balanced combat engine to work with.

The main differance between the editions i have noticed is that 4e has removed the following magic fixes everything mentality.

If you focus for DnD is "a character roleplayer and story based GM" how has 4e made doing these things harder or less of an option?

Caphi
2010-08-17, 11:05 PM
4e hasn't stoped you from doing most things you could do in 3.5e

Illusions. Summoning. Utility. Prestidigitation on a blaster, or anything except a debuff generator.

Lord Raziere
2010-08-17, 11:09 PM
Illusions. Summoning. Utility. Prestidigitation on a blaster, or anything except a debuff generator.

PHB: Prestidigitation is a default power for all wizards.
Utility comes in the form of various utility powers and rituals, also default to all wizards.

Arcane power:
there are both illusionist and summoner wizards in here.

so yes, wizards are stuff besides a debuff generator :smallsmile:.

Glyphic
2010-08-17, 11:14 PM
There is an illusionist Wizard.

Druids, Artificers, and wizards all have summons. They don't have massive summons, which make one player eat up 5x the time on their turn as other players.

I believe items can let you have Prestidigitation, at will. If not, it's not that much to ask for.

tcrudisi
2010-08-17, 11:21 PM
This is a problem with the person, not the system.

Also, gestalt is a game mode, not a character option, for reasons that should be obvious.

Gestalt, thanks!

I agree -- it is a problem with the player, but I also see it as a problem with the system. In a balanced system, creating something like Pun-Pun should/would not be possible. By allowing it as possible, you allow the problem players to do it. I know it was the players fault for creating it, but I also put an equal amount of the blame on 3.5 itself.

And please realize that I'm not saying that 4e is a superior system, only that it is a better system for me and the people I play with. I loved 3.5 back in the day but 4e opened my eyes to its flaws, just as I am sure that 5e will do the same for 4e. I do believe that each iteration of D&D has gotten better and I really hope that trend continues.

/edited to add:

I believe items can let you have Prestidigitation, at will. If not, it's not that much to ask for.

Yes, there is a level 5 hand item (called Hedge Wizard's Gloves, appropriately enough) which allows anyone to do Prestidigitation and Mage Hand at-will.

Kaun
2010-08-17, 11:23 PM
Illusions. Summoning. Utility. Prestidigitation on a blaster, or anything except a debuff generator.

The open ended magic of 3.5 was the biggest looser of the switch to 4e.

I miss it and im glad its gone at the same time.

Illision magic was one of my most used schools in 3.5 but it was just too easy to over come so many problems with it.

Mark Hall
2010-08-18, 12:08 AM
Of the two, I vastly prefer 4e, though I, too, don't think of it as D&D. It's a fun game, and my group is a blast, but it diverges too much from classic D&D for me to consider it the same game.

To me, D&D is, and always will be, a system, not just a collection of related features. By the "it's got dungeons and it's got dragons, whaddya mean it's not D&D?" argument, Palladium Fantasy is D&D. GURPS Fantasy is D&D. Certain Mage: The Ascension chronicles are D&D. Ars Magica is D&D. Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Angel are D&D. Star Wars is D&D. Under those criteria, D&D becomes too broad of a concept to be useful. While you can make changes to the system and still have it be D&D (I consider Castles and Crusades to be essentially D&D, as sort of a hybrid of OD&D and 1e), but 4e is too far gone to make it fall in the same section of the Venn diagram as "D&D", at least as I draw the circles.

Ad res, why do I prefer 4e to 3.5?

1) Generally, it's harder to make a useless character. If the character can be mechanically represented, chances are he'll be somewhat effective (barring attempts to make him utterly ineffective... if your class calls for Wisdom, Strength and Intelligence, putting all your points in Charisma, Constitution and Dexterity is going to make you nigh-useless, but that's a deliberate attempt).

2) Tied to 1, there's generally less need to get finicky about things. Less need to "plan your build." If you make some sub-optimal choices, you're not utterly crippled. The only thing that will kill you is making flat-out bad or irrelevant choices.

3) Better definition. The definition of actions, and the explicit inclusion of action types with powers, makes the game a lot better defined.

4) More tolerant of Rule 0. While 3.5 certainly accommodated rule 0, I always felt like it was a precariously balanced Jenga tower... remove the wrong piece and the whole edifice will fall. 4e, IME, takes hard knocks a bit better, without crippling characters.

Just a few of my thoughts on it; I'm tired.

arrowhen
2010-08-18, 12:10 AM
As quite a few have already said, if you're expecting DnD as posters around my age and older knew it... you're dead wrong. It's almost a completely different game, and this was the main reason players like myself didn't like it.

For what it's worth, I thought exactly the same thing when I first picked up the 3rd Edition Player's Handbook after 15+ years of playing B/E/C/M/I and AD&D. "Multiclass humans? Monsters with ability scores and class levels Skills? Feats? What the hell is a feat? This doesn't look like any D&D I've ever played!"

It wasn't until my dwarf found himself standing over a giant dire rat corpse in a tavern basement, cleaning blood off his axe that I was able to breathe a sigh of relief and say, "OK, yeah, this is D&D after all!"

PallElendro
2010-08-18, 12:10 AM
I freakin' love 4th Edition! Awesomest edition, with less complexity and tightened skills, and 1/2 level modifiers... gotta love it all, I say. what I really enjoy is the At-will Powers, Encounters, and the Marks. Gotta love -2 to attack creature to other than you. And for Paladins, it's even better for those marks.

Lord Raziere
2010-08-18, 12:18 AM
4) More tolerant of Rule 0. While 3.5 certainly accommodated rule 0, I always felt like it was a precariously balanced Jenga tower... remove the wrong piece and the whole edifice will fall. 4e, IME, takes hard knocks a bit better, without crippling characters.



yea in fact, I could probably make a shadow knight class or whatever, by taking the warrior, getting rid of its defensive builds and shields, focusing it on offense, bringing in some paladin and swordmage powers and changing them all to necrotic damage, putting in the ranger's dual-wielding feature, and then simply cherry picking the skills that would make sense for the class then making the three necessary stats for the shadow knight be whatever I want and changing all the powers bonus's to key off those stats.

creating a new class is less "starting from scratch" and more "taking parts of other classes and other mechanics to match the fluff you want" its
kinda patchwork but it would work, in theory. which is another good thing: divorcing the fluff completely from the mechanics allows for more flexibility, heck just make some minor modifications to the swordmage and you can have
a jedi.

darkpuppy
2010-08-18, 12:28 AM
Before i go any further i just wan't to point out you should play what you like as long as your having fun.

Definitely agreed.


If the art work is realy an issue could it not just be ignored?

As a DM, not really. I'm an amateur digital artist, a medieval recreationist, and a semi-regular DM, and having to leaf through a book where the artwork is over-gaudy and the armour is impractical is acutely painful to me. It's a personal taste thing.


4e hasn't stoped you from doing most things you could do in 3.5e especially when it came to fluff, story and game type. It basicly just gave you a more balanced combat engine to work with.

The main differance between the editions i have noticed is that 4e has removed the following magic fixes everything mentality.

A mentality I've never had a problem with, because there's no piece of magic a well thought out encounter can't handle. As to more balanced combat, more balanced between player roles? I'd have to agree. More balanced monsters? I'm afraid I still find the same poorly judged CRs, and while the simplified rules do indeed make combat go more smoothly, they have the disadvantage of adding pressure to a GM who already has a rep as a "Master of Wing-It-Fu" to keep up. Don't get me wrong, because, like yourself, I think everyone's taste is their own, and I offered my personal opinion there, but, of the two, 3.XE is the one for me, and I dislike many of the changes because the game system wasn't actually that broken in the first place. Wizards too powerful? spells solve everything? oh, never so! Wizards most definitively had the hardest time in all the groups I've run for.


If you focus for DnD is "a character roleplayer and story based GM" how has 4e made doing these things harder or less of an option?

To deal with this question you posed: Which is, in the long run, better? Sticking with a setting and rules-set combined that already works for every group I've run it for so far, or converting it to a shiny new rules set, or play with a set of settings I barely recognise and have no desire to play in... My money, frankly, is on the first. 4E has no setting I would desire to run or play in (4E Forgotten Realms is, as I already noted, a completely different setting to, say 3.5/3/2E Realms) , and I already have a rules set that works. I'd rather 3.XE for the simple reason that, apart from the "too many damn books" issue, it wasn't actually broken enough to ruin the enjoyment of myself and my players.

And, to answer another poster's question on which book requires Magic of Incarnum, it does not require it to use at all, but to be able to use everything without modding, a good fifth of the magic items in the Magic Item Guide 3.5 require Magic of Incarnum. The legacy rules are, in their lovely simplicity, already set out in MIG, as are swift actions, Group Items, all that jazz... but not Incarnum. Expanded Psionics Handbook is also required for a bunch of them, but, as a Dark Sun GM, I don't count XPH as an unnecessary book.

Kaun
2010-08-18, 12:43 AM
Definitely agreed.
To deal with this question you posed: Which is, in the long run, better? Sticking with a setting and rules-set combined that already works for every group I've run it for so far, or converting it to a shiny new rules set, or play with a set of settings I barely recognise and have no desire to play in... My money, frankly, is on the first. 4E has no setting I would desire to run or play in (4E Forgotten Realms is, as I already noted, a completely different setting to, say 3.5/3/2E Realms) , and I already have a rules set that works. I'd rather 3.XE for the simple reason that, apart from the "too many damn books" issue, it wasn't actually broken enough to ruin the enjoyment of myself and my players.

So its not so much that 4e inhibits your ability to run a story based game it is more that there is yet to be a setting for 4e which you are intrested in running/playing?

darkpuppy
2010-08-18, 12:47 AM
So its not so much that 4e inhibits your ability to run a story based game it is more that there is yet to be a setting for 4e which you are intrested in running/playing?

Even The Babylon Project (possibly the most badly written RP rulesbook of all time) couldn't stop me running a story. But I have to admit, I prefer 3.5E because I know damn well what I'm doing there. Wizards is wizards, fighters is fighters, rocks are rocks, and Bulettes invariably kill any party I've set them on so far below 10th level. 4E has nothing that particularly appeals to me personally, and, as noted, I find the artwork acutely painful to look at. That definitely inhibits my ability to run a game,

Kaun
2010-08-18, 12:53 AM
Even The Babylon Project (possibly the most badly written RP rulesbook of all time) couldn't stop me running a story.

one word.

FATAL (http://index.rpg.net/display-entry.phtml?mainid=3910)

darkpuppy
2010-08-18, 12:57 AM
one word.

FATAL (http://index.rpg.net/display-entry.phtml?mainid=3910)

Hrm. Have to look into that, just to see... tell me, was the character creation in that one spread out over all five chapters of the book with no indication of what was where? was the combat system over three of the five chapters? and did FATAL at least have this little thing called "a decent table of contents", or, indeed, that little thing we spoilt rpers call the "index"?

Because Babylon Project had no index, its contents lied like a politician, and it was about as easy to read as broken-glass braille.

DeltaEmil
2010-08-18, 01:06 AM
I find the artwork acutely painful to look at. That definitely inhibits my ability to run a game,So you also didn't play 3.x, because of the same gaudy artwork, where everybody has stupid and impractical armor ("dungeonpunk"-style).

Kaun
2010-08-18, 01:08 AM
My advice is dont look into it too deeply,

Because you never know just how deep the rabbit hole goes.

or what its circumference is, but FATAL will tell you anyway and you will realise that you didn't need or want to know either of these peices of information but now your worried why they know and what they intend to do with them.


and why does it takes 4 million candles before you get to level 2!!

darkpuppy
2010-08-18, 01:21 AM
while most of the armours seen in, say, the PHB's classes section do indeed have their weaknesses, only the monk and the paladin's strike me as thick. The cleric's could use some form of armour other than cloth underneath that midriff, the rogue could use less belts (more noise... but then, leather in general is a bad idea) , but Tordek's kit is one heckuva lot more practical than Ms. Dorf McBrightDiamondPlates. Also, gaudy generally means "loud, bright, attention getting." , whereas the generally more earthy and realistic colour scheme of the armours of the most frequently leafed pages (combat rules, classes, kit) only make me consider things like whether Mialee gets armour chafe, or whether Tordek bases his tactics around that hole in the mail in his abdomen. The 4E artwork makes me want to scream "Yeah, guide that weapon into your weak spots, why don'tcha?" (example of this is p6. May look impressive, but it wouldn't protect that thing as much as you think). p.33 is also a good example of what I consider silly armour design. Yeah, mate, love to see you get into that in less than 10 minutes... especially if you have gas!

But, suffice to say, this is my personal preference, and doesn't affect anybody else. If you like 4E, that's cool. I just don't, myself.

Ravens_cry
2010-08-18, 01:22 AM
Art in game books is like music in a movie. It's nice, it enhances the experience immensely, but you're not going to be paying attention to it most of the time.
As for 4E, eh, it's a good game. A lot of hard work was involved in sorting out what were a lot of issues for many people and it stirred things up, a real daring move by Wizard of the Coast. It's just that, in so doing, it really lost a lot of the things that appeal to me. I am not, or at least I try to be, the kind of nerd that froths at the mouth at every new thing, claiming it to be the "worst thing ever!"
I cut my teeth on it, and for that I am grateful. But Pathfinder fits my personal niche for fantasy role playing games a lot better.

WinWin
2010-08-18, 01:52 AM
I wanted to like 4e. I really, really did. Stupid errors, poor editing, poor playtesting made me very frustrated. Longer I played the more these mistakes became evident.

Alterations which were promised, such as a reduction of magic item dependancy, were false. 4e is just as magic item dependant as 3.x. It is an instrinsic part of the system.

Skill challenges, which I tried to make work, are an abject failure. Last I checked (a long time ago) they were on their 5th revision. They still do not work.

Errata is a nightmare to keep up with. If a single player wants to use online content, then the errata forced on the entire group. Last I checked there was the 12th iteration of errata. I buy books primarily, I like the texture and physicality of an actual object. I not not consider buying a subscription real ownership. Because of this marketing, I am treated like a non-preferred consumer. Despite paying for the books, I am forced to carry around a binder full of fixes for a product that was sold. If I had bought a car, it would be a lemon.

Let me reiterate. I wanted to like the game. I spent good money on a lot of books and an online subscription to DDI. I now wish I had spent my money and time on something else. I feel like I have been conned by a sleazy used car salesman.

tcrudisi
2010-08-18, 01:55 AM
Art in game books is like music in a movie. It's nice, it enhances the experience immensely, but you're not going to be paying attention to it most of the time.

True, for most people. For myself, I get angry when I hear music (and therefore I don't listen to music on my own), so unless the music is just incredibly well done in such a way that I don't hear it (read as: incredibly rare), music takes me out of the mood and flow of the movie and makes me wish for a magical remote that would mute that stupid music. I have seen way too many movies that I know I would have absolutely loved if they just didn't have music in them.

Which sort of makes me sympathize with DarkPuppy as I can understand where he is coming from. It's just a personal peeve and while I feel that disliking a system primarily because of the artwork is silly, I also realize that my desire to find a way to mute any singer I walk across is also silly.

So, basically I agree with you. It can enhance the game/movie, but when it fails horribly, it can for some rare people, detract so much that the game or movie becomes unplayable/unwatchable.

tcrudisi
2010-08-18, 02:05 AM
Alterations which were promised, such as a reduction of magic item dependancy, were false. 4e is just as magic item dependant as 3.x. It is an instrinsic part of the system.

There is an optional rule that allows players to get inherent bonuses instead of magical items. It was designed for low/no magic worlds.


Skill challenges, which I tried to make work, are an abject failure. Last I checked (a long time ago) they were on their 5th revision. They still do not work.

Afaik, skill challenges are on their first revision, if I would even call it that. Basically, they realized that it was very difficult to win a skill challenge so they lowered the difficulty through errata.

Admittedly, it did take them a while to figure them out. The first skill challenges were not great, by any stretch. However, I have played in some absolutely amazing skill challenges. My wife, who plays D&D, fondly looks back at two modules we have played in as her two favorite modules of all time -- and she claims this because of the skill challenges in them. They were certainly both memorable and butt-kicking. When done well, they are awesome. When done poorly, they are kinda shoddy. I find that as I get more experience DMing 4e over the years, my skill challenges that I give the players has definitely gotten better and better as I figure out what works and what doesn't. It's a tool, and like any tool, the more you practice with it the better you get at using it.


Errata is a nightmare to keep up with. If a single player wants to use online content, then the errata forced on the entire group. Last I checked there was the 12th iteration of errata. I buy books primarily, I like the texture and physicality of an actual object. I not not consider buying a subscription real ownership. Because of this marketing, I am treated like a non-preferred consumer. Despite paying for the books, I am forced to carry around a binder full of fixes for a product that was sold. If I had bought a car, it would be a lemon.

A lot of people do have a problem with this. I prefer it to the other extreme, however, which is a system that is not cared about and therefore gets no errata.


Let me reiterate. I wanted to like the game. I spent good money on a lot of books and an online subscription to DDI. I now wish I had spent my money and time on something else. I feel like I have been conned by a sleazy used car salesman.

I look back at most of the 3.x books I own and feel the same way. So many of them I never even really opened (except to look at feats or character options). The character builder, which you said above that you disliked, I feel has saved me ridiculous amounts of money. I no longer purchase those books that I would have only gotten for a few pages. Instead, I let my DDI subscription take care of it and only buy the books that I really want. Looking back at all those un-used 3.x books makes me feel the same way that you do -- conned by a sleazy used care salesman.

Roderick_BR
2010-08-18, 02:09 AM
I prefer 3.5 because of the simple fact that all the rules that apply to characters also apply to the monsters.

In 4th edition the monsters get to "ignore" several rules that limit the characters abilities. For example, monsters can use more than one action point in a single encounter, whereas characters cannot.

Also the difference in character powers versus monster powers is just too drastic. There are monsters that are supposedly a CR 5 that have powers that inflict statuses that characters NEVER gain access to. The only reason our group knows what the effects of the dominated condition are, is because once a week at least one of us gets hit with it.

So yah, my vote is for 3.5 because of the universal rules that apply to everyone. Also it is easier to houserule in 3.5.
You mean like in 3.5, where monsters have access to abilities normal classes and classic races doesn't get access to, unless it comes out in some book as a spell/magic item/feat/new playable race/houserule?

dsmiles
2010-08-18, 04:46 AM
Art in game books is like music in a movie. It's nice, it enhances the experience immensely, but you're not going to be paying attention to it most of the time.

Not to sound like an @$$ or anything, but I'd like to dispute your analogy. In certain genres of film, the music makes the movie (e.g. horror, suspense).

However, your point is valid. The artwork in gamebooks is secondary to the actual content. If somebody's concerned about the artwork, there may be bigger issues at hand. If you don't like the published campaign settings, write your own. I know I am, and it will start to show up in the HB forum around Monday (a little shameless self-advertising :smallbiggrin:).

Grogmir
2010-08-18, 04:54 AM
Not going to change anybodies mind but I wouldn't touch 3.5 with a 10ft bargepole.

imo 4ed is a fun game, 3.5 is 'create a broken character'.

Boci
2010-08-18, 05:02 AM
Not going to change anybodies mind but I wouldn't touch 3.5 with a 10ft bargepole.

imo 4ed is a fun game, 3.5 is 'create a broken character'.

I never understand how people think this is a disadvantage. 3.5 had ways to make characters at vastly different power levels, which meant that with a bit of OOC teamwork and common sense, you could make a balanced at multiple levels (reality bending casters? done, sturdy and comptetent? done, ect). Where as in 4E, you pretty much only have 1 power level.

dsmiles
2010-08-18, 05:11 AM
Not going to change anybodies mind but I wouldn't touch 3.5 with a 10ft bargepole.

imo 4ed is a fun game, 3.5 is 'create a broken character'.

3.5 is not necessarily "create a broken character." If you don't create a broken character, however, you are accused of being a poor optimizer.

Now, I believe in "optimization in moderation," but the way some people do it (with 1 level in this class, 2 levels in that class, 1 level in another class, 2 levels in yet another class) just seems silly to me.

I love 4e for the fact that plain wizards and vanilla fighters are now equally mechanically optimal. Yeah, sure wizards "do more damage" because they hit more targets, but they are less likely to one-shot something than the fighter when he's doing 5 weapon dice worth of damage to one creature. To me, this is great, magic should not be all powerful.

jseah
2010-08-18, 05:14 AM
which is another good thing: divorcing the fluff completely from the mechanics allows for more flexibility, heck just make some minor modifications to the swordmage and you can have a jedi.
Don't want to get into another argument... but =( *don't like*
I do dislike 4E for being too heroic fantasy and too much awesomesauce. Still, after toying around with the system for some time, I've come to the conclusion that it's nothing extensive houseruling can't solve.
- That's really just because they have too few powers. If encounter powers were at will and dailies were encounters (and rituals become dailies) as well as getting new powers every level or so, characters wouldn't be going "I use special power ###", special powers become normal powers.
- Some more rigorous definitions are needed but that's just semantics.

That said, 4E is a good chassis to houserule in new powers. Like, really really good.
Everything is just plug and play. Even favourite spells/powers from 3.5.

3.5 is the one where new classes are easier. 4E has restricted mechanics but you just have to be willing to break the mold (I was pondering a warlock-like class that had it's encounter and daily powers modify its at wills, like the blast shape invocations. And a binder-like one that was ritual based and had powers that changed depending on bound vestiges. )

I was considering test running a 4E game with no powers from 4E and a massive houserule that any ability that was in 3.5 could be asked for and I'd port it into the 4E format, keeping as close as possible to the old ability. Balance be damned.
eg. 3E Black Tentacles would be a level 11 daily, creating a difficult terrain zone that lasted till end of encounter and grabs everything (using Int as the attacking stat) that starts its turn inside. Grabbed stuff that start their turn inside take 1d6+Int damage instead.

Various feats are also cross compatible.

darkpuppy
2010-08-18, 05:20 AM
Know where you're coming from, Boci, and agree. With 3.5E, sure it had it's bad points (Grapple in less than 3 minutes RL time, anybody?) , but the fact is, it had a shedload of variety in what you could do, for good or for ill. It wasn't just magic, it was classes, prestige classes, substitution levels... If the DM knew what he was doing, you could build a campaign with almost as much ease as you could with GURPS (and chargen would generally go quicker too!)

Yes, you can create a broken character in 3.5. Gee, like that's different from any other RPG out there... It may be a nerf break, but in this very forum, there are people deliberately trying to find the most useless class combination, and, presumably, there are lots of people trying to find specialist combos that shine too. But the thing is, in 3.5, if you specialised, you took the risks associated with that too. Somebody said "magic solves everything" in 3.5. Oh, yeah? Haven't met the mage yet that didn't go down like a sack of excreta after being backstabbed by a suitably attired assassin. Similarly, I haven't met the overpowered warrior yet who could think his way out of a paper bag... which is a shame, because I always have ranged traps for just such occasions. Everything has a counter. I want simplicity, I'll go to Amber Diceless or something. I want choice, I'll go to 3.X, or a specialist in generalisation, like GURPS.

Reluctance
2010-08-18, 05:27 AM
I never understand how people think this is a disadvantage. 3.5 had ways to make characters at vastly different power levels, which meant that with a bit of OOC teamwork and common sense, you could make a balanced at multiple levels (reality bending casters? done, sturdy and comptetent? done, ect). Where as in 4E, you pretty much only have 1 power level.

Because 3.5 required heavy amounts of interparty cooperation and/or DM adjudication on the fly. And for all the talk about how all groups and all DMs should be ideal, in practice that's a lot of time and mental energy that could be spent elsewhere. Some people consider it worth it, some people actively enjoy having to adjust things for odd power interactions, while other people want as little as possible overhead between them and some casual entertainment with their friends.

Which when you get right down to it, should be the sum of this thread. 3.5 and 4e are distinctly different games. Different games have different strengths and weaknesses. "Better" or "worse" are heavily dependent on where your priorities lie.

Grogmir
2010-08-18, 05:42 AM
I never understand how people think this is a disadvantage. 3.5 had ways to make characters at vastly different power levels, which meant that with a bit of OOC teamwork and common sense, you could make a balanced at multiple levels (reality bending casters? done, sturdy and comptetent? done, ect). Where as in 4E, you pretty much only have 1 power level.

Boci - you have 30 power levels in 4E, but only one at each level.

3.5 change the mentality of DnD players. It was no longer about 'role playing' i'm sorry I know thats some Stormthing fallacy but imo its true.
It was about what cool mechanic your character could do - how if you combined this feat from that splat book with this equipement then all hell would break loss.

Take this previous post


I was odd in my book aquisition. The first DnD book I got was the 3.5 Monster manual. Unaware of where this book came from, I didn't know about the PHB or all the other books. As a 10 year old, I reverse engineered the monsters, played mock battles, increased HD, had a blast.

I then picked up the 4th ed PHB. After introducing it to my friends I DMed for the first time before even playing. However, I had no DMs guide. I just made up monsters and events and we had a blast. Then we started to homebrew stuff, that was fun. We desired more complexity from our characters. It wasn't enough that Joe the paladin had learnt this similar swordstroke to Samm Grey's paladin. We introduced custom feats, backgrounds. We even moved to a 3.5 skill system without intention.

Then I picked up the PHB. A new world opened. I spent ages tinkering away with the PHB, debating about what was the best option, playing dungeoncrawls to see who could make the best characters. Then I also realised that the books linked. I could modify monsters, optimize them, play them as characters, understand them, use monster abilities.

Then, the Completes. The Tomes. The Sourcebooks. I am a pig in the mud, a fish in the ocean. So much options, so delicously complicated and fun.

I Started making 3.5b to transition my players across. I started DMing 3.5, found it so AWSOME, since there were rules to help me with everything, and I could create so much, I could do so much. I could just pull monsters from the MM, and just have an awsome story. I was better able to reward specialized players in subtle ways. I held their hand as they touched the waters of making an awsome character who was in every single way exactly theirs. No longer the generic ranger who picked this power or that power. This ranger is Sarom Deathbringer, a keen eyed elf who uses sneaking tactics and flawless acrobatics, with a pair of matched katanas, to cut a swathe through his enemies. He engages in difficult diplomacy, and breaths a sigh of relief that his investment into balancing has paid off and curses as he sees Sarom fail a jump check.

3.5 is awsome. Coming back to 4th ed made me feel rather cheated. I could break it so easily, but so could anyone else. The powers cheapened what I liked about classes, and I grew dispondent as I saw the "conversion" like the Divine feats and the Power attack, where its all balanced...

I don't want to feel balanced. I want to build an awsome character. I want to feel better than the enemy in situations. I want to have control over every single detail of my character. And If I don't like something and want to change to something more characterful, I can talk it over with my DM. I can multi-class, and use that to potray a more effective character.

Magic items feel useful, and I get that buzzing feeling when everything clicks together and this X Item interacts with Y class ability and Z feat to give the effect that I want for my character.

4e was I believe an attempt to appeal to a wider audience. Making DnD simpler, easier to pick up and play, easier to DM, losing some of that awsome intricacy and complexity, to make it appeal to the joe smith. A huge mistake in my opinion, with the following rationale: DnD is always going to be a niche hobby. DnD, no matter how simplified it is, still requires basic intellect, time, and has social consequences for people who want to be totally socially correct.

All in all, 3.5. is so much better on so many levels. It rocks as a toolkit, its so diverse, so damn HUGE. But. I know it is hard to learn. I know people (like me occasionally) break it. I know that it is overwhelmingly complex for people. But once you've gone in, you've learnt all the things you need, you start your first campaign, you start to understand just how much the system offers. Put anything into DnD, you'll get a bag of holding full of fun back. :smallwink:

Not once does he mention ROLE playing. Not once.

My favourite part:

Coming back to 4th ed made me feel rather cheated. I could break it so easily, but so could anyone else.

4th Ed got my group role playing again, we nolonger try and 'one up each other'. I'm not uber cause I'm a druid or Cleric, I'm uber because of my actions. IN GAME. the effect i've had on the world.

Anyroad - thats' my 3p.

FelixG
2010-08-18, 05:50 AM
Boci - you have 30 power levels in 4E, but only one at each level.



-facepalm- he didnt mean how many levels each character he had. Power level refers to the tiers of power, some characters being of higher power level than others, not character level.

If you dont even understand the concept of power level vs character level i find your saying of 4e is fun and 3,5 is about breaking characters quite funny...




3.5 change the mentality of DnD players. It was no longer about 'role playing' i'm sorry I know thats some Stormthing fallacy but imo its true.
It was about what cool mechanic your character could do - how if you combined this feat from that splat book with this equipement then all hell would break loss.

Take this previous post



Not once does he mention ROLE playing. Not once.

My favourite part:

Coming back to 4th ed made me feel rather cheated. I could break it so easily, but so could anyone else.

4th Ed got my group role playing again, we nolonger try and 'one up each other'. I'm not uber cause I'm a druid or Cleric, I'm uber because of my actions. IN GAME. the effect i've had on the world.

Anyroad - thats' my 3p.

Of course he doesn't mention ROLE playing, because you dont even need a SYSTEM to do that if you dont want to, its story. What is being discussed is the SYSTEM. I have done great ROLE playing in Unisystem, Traveller, CORTEX, battletech, SPECIAL (i could go on) but that has absolutely nothing to do with the system which is what is being discussed.

And if your groups idea of fun was one uping one another with mechanics, well then thats on you guys, not the system.

Kurald Galain
2010-08-18, 05:57 AM
I would like to point out to all the people who complain about 3.5. being broken that there are very very few instances when this comes into effect.
That is absolutely correct. Regardless of what is theoretically possible to do with casters and the tippyverse, the vast of majority of people simply don't play that way.

The issues with 3E are vastly overstated on RPG forums. For that matter, the issues with 4E, GURPS, Whitewolf, or pretty much any other RPG are also vastly overstated on RPG forums. Any RPG with a significantly large ruleset can be broken, loopholed, or otherwise used in silly ways; but (1) most players don't realize this, (2) those that realize it generally don't do it because it's no fun, and (3) even if they would, most DMs don't allow it anyway.

Grogmir
2010-08-18, 06:13 AM
Felix, I understood well enough, if you didn't get my sarcasm in the first section then please facepalm yourself, but i'll clarify just for you.

I don't see how having different tiers of power levels at the 'same' level is fun - I don't see what it adds. You shouldn't have to 'work' OOC to achieve balance. 4th ed does it already - if you want more power then play a highier level - simples.

----

Onto the second part - read his post - is it all about systems? No - its about how he USES the system.

As I stated 3.5 change peoples mentality to DnD, it was all about the mechanics, 4th cuts through that crud, gets back to the action - gets back to "What do you WANT to do?", then do it and roll, All Hail Page 42!

darkpuppy
2010-08-18, 06:14 AM
I'm with Kurald on this one, and, having stated my personal opinion, toddle off.

FelixG
2010-08-18, 06:24 AM
Felix, I understood well enough, if you didn't get my sarcasm in the first section then please facepalm yourself, but i'll clarify just for you.

I don't see how having different tiers of power levels at the 'same' level is fun - I don't see what it adds. You shouldn't have to 'work' OOC to achieve balance. 4th ed does it already - if you want more power then play a highier level - simples.

----

Onto the second part - read his post - is it all about systems? No - its about how he USES the system.

As I stated 3.5 change peoples mentality to DnD, it was all about the mechanics, 4th cuts through that crud, gets back to the action - gets back to "What do you WANT to do?", then do it and roll, All Hail Page 42!

Missing sarcasm on the internet? i will indeed facepalm myself! /sarcasm

So having complete control over your character with the tons of options a system provides is....bad?

3.5 changing players idea of the fact that they can choose from hundreds if not thousands of options for their characters instead of sticking to a single class for everything is a boon in my opnion, even if there is theoretical optimization, i have NEVER played in a group that has had players try to pull out a "cheating" character, again if your group does that it sounds like a personal problem.

To each their own though -shrug-

Grogmir
2010-08-18, 06:37 AM
So having complete control over your character with the tons of options a system provides is....bad?


When it takes over your thinking about a character then imo yes.

I've played in many groups all around the country (Uk) not just one. Over 50% of the players talk about the character in terms of their build. Its not just about creating 'broken' characters, its about they way people think about them.

Get back in character, get rolling the dice, make it nice and simple for the DM and lets go!

To each there own indeed sir! Which brings me back to the top - not going to change peoples opinion - don't really want to! If 3.5 floats your boat - good going!

For me its 4e everytime.

Telok
2010-08-18, 07:13 AM
Something you will have to be aware of if you play 4e is that difficult or challenging encounters can take three to four hours.

Some of this is going to depend on party composition, DM style, and what you consider a challenge. Out of seven characters we only have two tier 1 strikers, a ranger and a rogue. Everyone else does about half of their damage, including the avenger(dead) and monk(replacement for the dead avenger). Less if the character is a dedicated controller or leader. We do have a GMPC cleric because nobody wanted to play a healer, and yes having one is still an issue despite what some people claim. So our party isn't a massive damage engine, none of us have skimped on damage (except the DMPC who only has one power that dosen't grant HP) but an even level encounter still takes more than an hour.

What people consider a challenging fight to be will affect their views on this as well. For us challenging means using second winds, action points, magic item dailies, all of our encounter powers and some of our daily powers. If aren't people making death saves and healing checks to stabilize, it's not a challenging encounter. Unfortunately those fights also take more than three hours. Even more unfortunately any fight shorter than about two hours tends to be a cakewalk that's over in 45 minutes and results in maybe four healing surges used and everyone still had all their dailies ready. After more than a year of 4e our group has yet to find a happy middle ground between those two.

Leolo
2010-08-18, 07:15 AM
Of course he doesn't mention ROLE playing, because you dont even need a SYSTEM to do that if you dont want to, its story.

That is absolutly true. But there is another thing that is also true:

A system can help or hinder roleplaying. To make a simple example: The full attack in 3.5 might hinder roleplaying. You have 2 possibilities to describe it. Either you describe it as it is in the mechanics:


"Max the barbarian hits the ogre 3 times. Then the ogre tries to hit 3 times. After this max tries to hit the ogre 3 times. Well... followed by the ogre who is now trying to hit max 3 times"

That would be lame, and in fact nobody would describe it that way. The second way is to describe it as simultanous actions. If you do use this way to describe your actions there is one problem. The description now has nothing to do with the rule mechanics. More hindering: If the rules say the ogre is dead after 3 hits you might describe that he had also tried to hit you.

But in fact he does not have. He was dead before his turn has started.

This is only one example - you can find many of them where the rule mechanic does not encourage or actually hinders describing this action.

The result of these problems is: There is very few description of actions in 3.5. Up to this level that many players consider fights as beeing no part of role playing at all. Up to this that combat is considered a game within the game. You have 2 characters. One who has out of combat abilities, and one who has combat abilities. Both often share not much more than the name.

Fights and dangerous situations should be the culmulation point of a good fantasy story. Highlights. And are considered not even as a part of those story. Players sometimes want to "go back to story" - as if it is a different game. Like "well enough with this monopoly (insert another board game here) - let's play D&D again".

The statement quoted above is a good example for this mentality. People are so used that a system does nothing for their role playing that they believe it can not do anything for it.They consider the system as purely a combat mechanic - that is not part of the role playing.

Is 4E better than 3.5 at this topic? I would say absolutly.

If my ranger attacks a opponent in 3.5 he does the same as my fighter. He even does the same as my paladin. My paladin is a noble defender of the helpless. My fighter is a evil soldier, killing people for money. Both use exactly the same combat mechanic. Both attack with their swords. Even if the damage might be different. Nothing helps me to show that one is a ruthless evildoer and the other is noble and a hero. I can describe that my paladin is trying to save the innocent if some opponent attacks them. But in fact i have no rule mechanic to do it. I can also describe that he tries to save his wizard buddy from beeing attacked by assassins. But in fact i have no rule mechanics other than "hit them until they die" to do this.

In 4E my paladin actually is saving the innocent. He takes his shield and blocks the strike against them. He stops the assassins from reaching the wizard - not only be killing them if it is possible.

More than that. In 4E my fighter might be an swordfighter or a fighter with a pike. And both play different. Both use different actions. And this is also true for my rogue. I can play a brutal scoundrel or a artful dodger and the difference between both is not that one has good strenght and the other does not.

This does not end at combat mechanics. Out of combat encounters are a fix part of 4E. You can actually play a wizard who has never killed a single monster and is high level. All his experience might come from solving riddles, studiying rituals or brewing new potions as part of skill challenges, quests or similar options.

Did anyone remember source book texts like the following? "The red wizards let new members travel through the world, fighting monsters to get experience"

This is a result of "optional" XP for non combat situations, and while most DMs gave out XP for non combat situations it is not half a part of the game than in 4E.

And of course balance is a part of role playing. What is the role of a lvl 15 Fighter in 3.5? Some would say: Mule for the wizard. I would not, because i have played with really nice people when i played 3.5

But nevertheless there is some truth in this mocking. Some classes have only role niches when balancing is bad.

Kurald Galain
2010-08-18, 07:27 AM
Out of combat encounters are a fix part of 4E. You can actually play a wizard who has never killed a single monster and is high level.
In theory, yes. In practice, absolutely nobody plays that way.

Also, in theory, this is equally possible in every earlier edition of D&D. It's really not such a good example.

dsmiles
2010-08-18, 07:33 AM
In theory, yes. In practice, absolutely nobody plays that way.

Also, in theory, this is equally possible in every earlier edition of D&D. It's really not such a good example.

True. Any edition of DnD can give story xp. And out of combat encounters were not fixed, IMO. Skill challenges are worse, again my opinion, than the old, tried-and-true "roleplay the situation" method (for social encounters).

Leolo
2010-08-18, 07:46 AM
In theory, yes. In practice, absolutely nobody plays that way.

Also, in theory, this is equally possible in every earlier edition of D&D. It's really not such a good example.

Possible? Sure. But only with optional rules.

But you are right, of course - this was an extreme example and not from actual gameplay. It should only show that rules can support role playing. And of course it helps role playing if i am able to get experience from actions that describes my characters role in the world. And if the system encourages DMs to create situations where these roles does matter.

Kurald Galain
2010-08-18, 07:58 AM
Possible? Sure. But only with optional rules.
Nope. 2E's experience table explicitly gave XP for roleplaying, clever ideas, and out-of-combat spellcasting.

This is precisely why I said, just a few posts up, that the issues with any RPG system are vastly overstated on forums like this one. People look for theoretical examples because they don't have enough practical examples in their own experience, and other people repeat theoretical examples from forums as if they were practical truth.

They're not. The Knock spell eclipsing thieves is a good example of this: it is ubiquitously cited on forum posts, but I seriously doubt there is anyone on this forum who has experienced, or who personally knows anyone who has experienced, a player who felt his rogue character was useless because the spell Knock existed.

Almost without exception, anyone who claims that "system X is bad because it does Y" is grossly exaggerating.

Renchard
2010-08-18, 07:59 AM
So having complete control over your character with the tons of options a system provides is....bad?
Player empowerment at the mechanical level (as opposed to the character conceptual level) is probably one of the biggest problems wrought by 3e.

dsmiles
2010-08-18, 08:07 AM
...and AD&D gave xp for treasure.

I mean, umm...forget it. 4e has its flaws (a major flaw being the sheer amount of errata and updates that you have to pay $10/month to get), 3.0/3.5 also has its flaws (a major flaw being most of the splatbooks seemed to be published un-edited), I'm not sure which had worse flaws. I now play 4e (primarily, with a little 3.5 thrown in for the Iron Kingdoms setting). Of course, I play without most of the updates and errata, so I can't say how those affect the system.

Jayabalard
2010-08-18, 08:09 AM
Art in game books is like music in a movie. It's nice, it enhances the experience immensely, but you're not going to be paying attention to it most of the time.Music can make or break a movie, even if it's not something that you are going to be paying a lot attention to.


And this is a bad thing how? Where did I say that this is a bad thing? I just said that it's a significant departure from OD&D, and that it seems quite derivative of video games.

AtlanteanTroll
2010-08-18, 08:11 AM
Yes, WOTC is an evil money grubbing corporation, while every other company is in the business of making RPGs out of the kindness of their hearts. :annoyed:

I'd sooner level that complaint against "cut-and-paste-Pathfinder Paizo". Which I don't, btw.

Not my point.

Never played Pathfinder.


I mean, umm...forget it. 4e has its flaws (a major flaw being the sheer amount of errata and updates that you have to pay $10/month to get), 3.0/3.5 also has its flaws (a major flaw being most of the splatbooks seemed to be published un-edited), I'm not sure which had worse flaws. I now play 4e (primarily, with a little 3.5 thrown in for the Iron Kingdoms setting). Of course, I play without most of the updates and errata, so I can't say how those affect the system.

Is my point. I'm OK with 3.5 flaws, becuase I don't need to buy splat-books to fix things.

Leolo
2010-08-18, 08:17 AM
Nope. 2E's experience table explicitly gave XP for roleplaying, clever ideas, and out-of-combat spellcasting.


Ah...maybe this wasn't clearified enough by myself. The text above was a 3.5 / 4E comparation. In fact i do like the way AD&D handles non combat encounters more than 3E but i would of course commend every system that makes this a fix part of the game. (and many 3.5 houserules does qualify for this, too)


I mean, umm...forget it. 4e has its flaws (a major flaw being the sheer amount of errata and updates that you have to pay $10/month to get)

Errata/Updates are full free - you do not have to pay anything for it.

dsmiles
2010-08-18, 08:20 AM
Errata/Updates are full free - you do not have to pay anything for it.

Just goes to show that this is what you get when you don't go to the site for fear of getting sucked in to the $10/month for life thing. :smallredface:

Renchard
2010-08-18, 08:21 AM
Just goes to show that this is what you get when you don't go to the site for fear of getting sucked in to the $10/month for life thing. :smallredface:

$6/month, assuming you subscribe for a year. I think it's $8/month with a six-month subscription.

Dragosai
2010-08-18, 08:27 AM
Well, this is always gonna be a toughy, because, as has been noted before, everybody has their favourites. For example, I went into a week-long rage when what was then TSR decided to scrap Alternity, a system that I still believe rocks the dragon to its god-damn core... But nonetheless, here's my two cents on the subject:

As quite a few have already said, if you're expecting DnD as posters around my age and older knew it... you're dead wrong. It's almost a completely different game, and this was the main reason players like myself didn't like it. When I'd heard that the 4E forgotten realms was 150 years in the future from previous editions (which had followed a fairly consistent timeline), I was horrified. This pretty much sums up my feelings on the whole thing. I'm sure, as a game, it's fun, but you'll not see me leaving 3.X for several reasons...

...Firstly, one thing that wasn't fixed with the new edition was something that, I freely admit, can't be helped with a business: Too many damn books. In 3.5, one of my sourcebooks requires a good 12 or 13 books to use to its fullest, many of which (Magic of Incarnum being the perfect example) I would not touch with a ten foot bargepole. Similarly, there were two PHBs, which left me, as a DM, a bit out in the cold. Yes, PHB2 only had extra stuff, but, by damn, it was useful stuff I still wanted... and 4E definitely didn't change that.

The very short version of what I have to say about 4E is this: It's D20 Modern, but Fantasy. Oddly, this move made 4E suck for me, and Star Wars Saga Edition rock, whereas, in the previous version, the reverse was true. Yes, the rules are, by and large, more streamlined, but its extreme emphasis on tactical combat left me, a character roleplayer and story based GM, out in the cold. As petty as this may seem, the artwork was far too gaudy for my taste, and my horror as impractical armour after impractical armour went past just grew and grew. The monsters hadn't changed too much, in that many of their challenge ratings were askew, but, overall, I disliked this new version so intensely that I have never gone near it since. It seemed to yell at me "FIGHT! PLAY! MAKE SPECTACULARNESS FOR ME!" so hard, that I was actually turned off, compared to the thoughts I have whenever I play 3.5E, which usually go along the lines of "Okay, GM, what new cunning trick have the players come up with? Let's find out together..."

Again, keep in mind that this is just my opinion. Those of you who enjoy 4E, by all means, have fun... I mean, heck, that's the whole point, no? But myself, I don't see myself having fun with 4E, and have thus shunned it like a gossip journo.

The above post is exactly what I was talking about in my first post on this thread.
Everything you (darkpuppy) list above as reasons you don't like 4E make absolute ZERO sense to me. I'll try to explain why; the things you listed are all things that have NOTHING to do with 4E. So you freaked out when they released fluff on FR that had a setting 150 years in the future? So I guess someone held a gun to your head and was like "if you play in FR you have to use the new fluff or we kill you!" The new FR is fluff, and has nothing to do with 4E; yeah there are a some mechanics; swordmages and some paragon paths etc. You could even use all the new mechanics if you wanted and still play in the old FR. It seems like people are forgetting that this is a game where you and your group create your own world.

Next too many books? Again is someone forcing you to buy these books? Get the core have fun for the rest of your life and never buy another book ever.

And last and my number one pet peeve; what in the name of anything and everything does ANY combat system have to do with ROLE PLAYING and character development etc? So your saying that because the rules used for resolving combat have changed suddenly people can't role play their characters?

As you stated everyone will and should be playing whatever system they have fun with. But your post is exactly the kind of thing that gets people so up in arms about 3.5/Pathfinder vs. 4E. Yes everything you stated above is your opinion, but none of it pertains to in anyway shape or form to a discussion of the merit or flaw of 4E.

Saying that the new FR makes 4E bad in some way is like reviewing how good or bad a snow shovel is and saying it's a bad shovel because it does not cook my chicken all the way through.

dsmiles
2010-08-18, 08:30 AM
I round up to make little "cushions" in my finances. Both 6 and 8 round up to a nice even 10. I would have paid for the virtual tabletop, if I hadn't found OpenRPG first.
Still, too much errata and too many updates. Playtest the system before you publish it. Don't come out later and say, "Sorry, but we have to nerf your clerics (or whatever class)." That's a load of crap.

Dragosai
2010-08-18, 08:32 AM
PHB: Prestidigitation is a default power for all wizards.
Utility comes in the form of various utility powers and rituals, also default to all wizards.

Arcane power:
there are both illusionist and summoner wizards in here.

so yes, wizards are stuff besides a debuff generator :smallsmile:.

Might be a double post here, sorry if it is. THIS above post is EXACTLY what myself and I think others are talking about; people trying to point out "bad" things about 4E and having no idea of what they speak. Thank you Lord Raziere!

DeltaEmil
2010-08-18, 08:34 AM
Still a lot better than "Oh, the clerics and wizards totally rule and make everybody else drool? And the rules don't work? Not our problems! Suckers!" :smalltongue:
Or even worse: "The old rules don't work? No problem, here is 3.5, but you have to pay for it! Suckers!" :smallamused:

Also, unlike a true computer game, you don't have to apply the changes if you don't like them.

tcrudisi
2010-08-18, 08:34 AM
4e has its flaws (a major flaw being the sheer amount of errata and updates that you have to pay $10/month to get)...

Uhh? The only thing you pay $10/month for are the character builder, the compendium, and the monster creation tools. The errata/updates are free, available for anyone and everyone by download.

Dragosai
2010-08-18, 08:49 AM
That is absolutely correct. Regardless of what is theoretically possible to do with casters and the tippyverse, the vast of majority of people simply don't play that way.

The issues with 3E are vastly overstated on RPG forums. For that matter, the issues with 4E, GURPS, Whitewolf, or pretty much any other RPG are also vastly overstated on RPG forums. Any RPG with a significantly large ruleset can be broken, loopholed, or otherwise used in silly ways; but (1) most players don't realize this, (2) those that realize it generally don't do it because it's no fun, and (3) even if they would, most DMs don't allow it anyway.

OK going to try and explain this again; it is not all the crazy splat books and broken combos one can come up with that people are really complaining about when they say 3.5 is "broken". Stuff in the PHB is broken all to hell after level 9. Yes, yes, yes we all know you can "try" to play in a way that does not break things but after a time this makes no sense. Why keep using something that I can only use 10% of because if I use more it falls apart? Or I could use this other thing that I can use 100% of and not have to worry about breaking it?

Dragosai
2010-08-18, 08:51 AM
Missing sarcasm on the internet? i will indeed facepalm myself! /sarcasm

So having complete control over your character with the tons of options a system provides is....bad?

3.5 changing players idea of the fact that they can choose from hundreds if not thousands of options for their characters instead of sticking to a single class for everything is a boon in my opnion, even if there is theoretical optimization, i have NEVER played in a group that has had players try to pull out a "cheating" character, again if your group does that it sounds like a personal problem.

To each their own though -shrug-

So no one in your group has ever played a wizard, cleric, or druid?

Kesnit
2010-08-18, 08:59 AM
Alterations which were promised, such as a reduction of magic item dependancy, were false. 4e is just as magic item dependant as 3.x. It is an instrinsic part of the system.

My 9th level Artificer was using the +1 Wand he'd had since level 3 as his implement and was still effective. The party's Druid gets more bonuses from my powers than she does from her magic items.

The party is still effective, and while combat is challenging (as it should be), we don't feel like we're underpowered.


Skill challenges, which I tried to make work, are an abject failure. Last I checked (a long time ago) they were on their 5th revision. They still do not work.

I have never understood this complaint. What is so hard about "here is your challenge. Tell me what you are going to do to solve it. You have to get 6 successes before you get 3 failures."


Errata is a nightmare to keep up with. If a single player wants to use online content, then the errata forced on the entire group.

1 person with DDI will solve this problem.


Last I checked there was the 12th iteration of errata. I buy books primarily, I like the texture and physicality of an actual object. I not not consider buying a subscription real ownership.

If you want the books, fine. But you lose the ability to complain about errata since there is a very simple solution to that problem.


Because of this marketing, I am treated like a non-preferred consumer. Despite paying for the books, I am forced to carry around a binder full of fixes for a product that was sold.

No, you aren't. You are choosing to do so because you don't want to get DDI. You have a choice and you made your choice. You can't complain about the choice you made.

Dragosai
2010-08-18, 09:01 AM
I round up to make little "cushions" in my finances. Both 6 and 8 round up to a nice even 10. I would have paid for the virtual tabletop, if I hadn't found OpenRPG first.
Still, too much errata and too many updates. Playtest the system before you publish it. Don't come out later and say, "Sorry, but we have to nerf your clerics (or whatever class)." That's a load of crap.

Ah the errata argument, also self defeating. I for one want my game company to fix things, of course if I don't well then I never bother even looking at the errata, again this is a FREE CHOICE the players of the game make. Please do not bother going into the "make the game good from the get go or don't make it." Yeah no RPG in history has been released and not needed errata, whatís good and different about 4E is that the designers admit and try their best to fix things after they release them instead of just ignoring them and moving on to the next book.

Oh to the post about magic items, again I don't think everyone is getting the point.
First as others pointed out you can play 4E with little to no magic/items, there are built in rules to do so.
Second when people say 4E is not dependent on magic items, what they mean is that in 4E you could have a fighter or a ranger or a rogue or any of your standard "don't use magic types" and if they lost all their magic items they would still be viable, yeah of course not as good as they were with the items thatís a no brainer, but they do not become completely useless in combat. Where as in 3.5 a fighter after about level 5 maybe 6 without all their magic items is just a sink hole of suck, they can do NOTHING in combat. Please to do not list me feats the fighter could use and all that blah blah blah as it is irrelevant because how many fighters are going to take a bunch of feats that still make them able to maybe do something in combat if they don't have all their magic items?
This is a great example of how the two systems handle things; I was play testing a module for 3.5. If I recall we started at level 12, I decided to play a fighter. I made the fighter used the standard starting gold to buy his magic items and off we went. Now since we were play testing we all knew a little bit about the module and thus knew that we would be going into hell for most of the run. Not directly into hell mind you as that would be instant death at level 12, but to a keep floating over the surface of hell. So we start the adventure and the first encounter was just some cultist shlubbies, no problem. Encounter number two of the module; fire giants anyone want to guess what happened to my fighter? Yep my crazy expensive +3 sword sundered to bits in two hits. We lived through the giant encounter and then the game came to a complete stop. So in game, in character this is what the group and my fighter are looking at; a well that leads to hell where a group of devils have taken several dozen villagers to use in rituals to do bad things. We the adventures need to get down there ASAP and try to save them and kick some devil ass. Well my fighter in character stated that they group would have to go on without me or maybe head back to the city to see if they could find another adventure to take my place. But going into hell without suitable magic weapon I would be a danger to the rest of the group. Out of game we had no real recourse for this either other than to hand wave the breaking of said sword just so we could move on with the play testing. And that is (one of the many) problems with 3.5.
OK so my preemptive strike against all the "hay you could have done this posts".

Go to town and buy a new sword - not enough gold in the group to do so since everyone equipped their characters with their starting gold and had to buy all the lame standard equipment all 3.5 class need to live.

Scrape up enough to buy even a +1 sword? Again not going to work since my fighter would be doing so little damage and missing so much that it still would just be a hindrance to the goal in a big way.

Now I am sure we will have someone who will say they just would have pressed on and sucked it up without a magic weapon. Well good for you and if you did anything but nothing and/or get killed then your DM was being super nice for putting you into a lame situation in the first place. Other then DM fiat there was no way around that situation.

Same situation in 4E, yeah it's not going to be a great time going into hell with a standard lump of steel in your hand to fight off devils, but you can still add to the group in combat and be a help in the situation.
Anyone who does not understand that this is one of the many, many reasons why 4E has improved upon 3.5 is not from the same planet and there is zero point in even having a discussion.

Leolo
2010-08-18, 09:01 AM
I think that kurald is right about his judgment regarding system critique. Of course you should not take it as beeing totalitarian and condemning.

I had played 3.5 years - and it were good years where i met nice people and had a lot of fun.

I have just found a system that does solve some problems that i had seen in 3.5 during all these years. That fits my style of role playing better. And makes me more fun.

But that does not mean that critique is obsolete. Yes: Knock does not make a rogue feeling useless. But that does not mean there are no problems with utility spells at all.

Oracle_Hunter
2010-08-18, 09:08 AM
Also: One DDI account provides at least 4 copies of the Character Builder and Monster Builder. And you only need a single DDI account (shared amongst friends) for everyone to have access to the complete rules set via Rules Comphendium.

When your DDI account goes inactive, you'll still have full Character & Monster Builders; they just won't update again until you reactivate a DDI account.

Of all the things to complain about in 4e, patches shouldn't be one of them. WotC has made it both incredibly economical to keep up with their content factory and has done a fine job of integrating the patches. And since the patches have so-far done little more than repairing broken mechanics and restoring game balance after new releases, I'm not sure what the problem is.

If you're complaint is that they should have playtested before release, then I suppose you don't care for 3.0 either - or 3.5 for that matter. Just because they never patched it doesn't mean it doesn't need patching :smalltongue:

dsmiles
2010-08-18, 09:14 AM
If you're complaint is that they should have playtested before release, then I suppose you don't care for 3.0 either - or 3.5 for that matter. Just because they never patched it doesn't mean it doesn't need patching :smalltongue:

Exactly. I never really liked 3.x, but all of my friends switched, so in order to play DnD, I pretty much had to switch. I switched to 4e voluntarily after reading the two pre-release books (Monsters & Worlds, and the other one), hoping against hope that the nightmare was over. (No such luck.) So I homebrew many of my rules now, and use 4e for the rest.

Jayabalard
2010-08-18, 09:35 AM
And this is a bad thing how? Where did I say that this is a bad thing? I just said that it's a significant departure from OD&D, and that it's moving the same direction WoW has gone compared to previous MMORPGs.

Compare these 4:

A OD&D fighter, pretty much just hits it with his sword.
A Everquest Classic warrior (classic through velious); they also pretty much just hit it with their swords; they had some other buttons that basically didn't do much of anything and some long cooldowns (defensive, etc that they get in the 51-60 range). This changed later, especially so once WoW was released, and the warrior gradually got more abilities, and worked more like a spellcaster.
A World of Warcraft Warrior, which has a ton of abilities (more buttons than you can fit on the bar really), some on long cool downs, some on short cooldowns, some pretty much at will, stances.
a 4e Fighter, which has a fair amount of abilities, some on long cooldowns (daily), some on short cooldowns (encounter), some at will


WoW and 4e are toward one extreme, OD&D is on the other end, and classic Everquest was somewhere in the middle, though it's closer to the OD&D side than the WoW side.

dsmiles
2010-08-18, 09:37 AM
Where did I say that this is a bad thing? I just said that it's a significant departure from OD&D, and that it's moving the same direction WoW has gone compared to previous MMORPGs.

Compare these 4:

A OD&D fighter, pretty much just hits it with his sword.
A Everquest Classic warrior (classic through velious); they also pretty much just hit it with their swords; they had some other buttons that basically didn't do much of anything and some long cooldowns (defensive, etc that they get in the 51-60 range). This changed later, especially so once WoW was released, and the warrior gradually got more abilities, and worked more like a spellcaster.
A World of Warcraft Warrior, which has a ton of abilities (more buttons than you can fit on the bar really), some on long cool downs, some on short cooldowns, some pretty much at will, stances.
a 4e Fighter, which has a fair amount of abilities, some on long cooldowns (daily), some on short cooldowns (encounter), some at will


WoW and 4e are toward one extreme, OD&D is on the other end, and classic Everquest was somewhere in the middle, though it's closer to the OD&D side than the WoW side.

I don't know about Evercrack, but in WoW, and pretty much any DnD, the rogue-types can outfight the fighter-types. Funny, yes?

darkpuppy
2010-08-18, 09:39 AM
Next too many books? Again is someone forcing you to buy these books? Get the core have fun for the rest of your life and never buy another book ever.

What, you mean the core books as in PHB1 PHB2 PHB3? or maybe MM1,2, etc, or maybe DMG1, 2, 3? That's still something like 160 quid I don't need to spend because 3.5 isn't actually as broken as people make out? No ta.


And last and my number one pet peeve; what in the name of anything and everything does ANY combat system have to do with ROLE PLAYING and character development etc? So your saying that because the rules used for resolving combat have changed suddenly people can't role play their characters?

Que? oh, wait, I found it. Yes, note I said emphasis on combat. And I said that its streamlining of combat left me out in the cold. Wanna know why? simple. First off, I never personally need streamlined combat. My players manage to grasp the combat system within about 10 minutes, even the really young newbies (aka our bright and shining next generation) got it within that time. Gee, 10 minutes... But the rolling, the discussion, the tons of options, mean that I actually have time to sit back and think where to go next. I'm not one of those GMs who sit around for five or six hours writing down a plot, I'm one of those GMs who spends 1 hour writing a plot outline, and wings the rest because he knows damn well that his players will deviate from written soon enough, and he'll have to wing it anyway. You're getting annoyed at what, in the end, is an opinion. You play 4E, and love it. Cool. Fine. But the whole point of asking "Do you think 3E/PF/4E is good/bad, and if so why?" is to get people's input. You don't like the input, you asked for it.

Kurald already summed it up quite easily: Everyone has some issue with the rules of Edition X or Game X. For example, in 3.5E, I despise Ray of Stupidity. But the fact is, it's largely subjective. In terms of pure, objective, "this is better/worse", you're going to get squat. You can quite easily say, for example, "combat phases are quicker in 4E"... but is that a good thing? that's up to individual GMs. Me, I like my combat nice and involved, with lots of thinking going on, and flurries of action as everything is described in awe-inspiring/gruesome detail. You, you may well like it quick. But that doesn't make either system better. I've told you why I dislike 4E, subjective as a heckuva lot of it is, but that's the whole point: there is no real, objective measure of which is better, because requirements vary from group to group, sometimes individual to individual, and attacking me because I gave you an answer you didn't like, but was honest... well, that's not cricket.

dsmiles
2010-08-18, 09:51 AM
I've told you why I dislike 4E, subjective as a heckuva lot of it is, but that's the whole point: there is no real, objective measure of which is better, because requirements vary from group to group, sometimes individual to individual, and attacking me because I gave you an answer you didn't like, but was honest... well, that's not cricket.

This playgrounder deserves a cookie. NAY!! An entire plate of cookies!
http://www.rollingpinproductions.com/Web%20Site%20Images/Cookie_M.jpg
It's all subjective input (but I don't know what "that's not cricket" means). Opinions were asked for, and opinions were given. Most (if not all) of us live in countries where we're allowed to have opinions. You may not like mine, so feel free to form your own.

Kurald Galain
2010-08-18, 09:51 AM
I don't know about Evercrack, but in WoW, and pretty much any DnD, the rogue-types can outfight the fighter-types. Funny, yes?

I'm not sure, but I believe 3E is to blame for this one. They were the ones that changed the rogue from "skillmonkey" to "skill monkey with substantial damage output". Once a game starts with the assumption that most problems are to be resolved through combat, then it logically follows that all classes must have something to contribute in combat.

darkpuppy
2010-08-18, 09:55 AM
This playgrounder deserves a cookie. NAY!! An entire plate of cookies!
http://www.rollingpinproductions.com/Web%20Site%20Images/Cookie_M.jpg
It's all subjective input (but I don't know what "that's not cricket" means). Opinions were asked for, and opinions were given. Most (if not all) of us live in countries where we're allowed to have opinions. You may not like mine, so feel free to form your own.

Why thank you, kind sir! have an internet! Anyways, before I toddle off (because this has quite clearly begun the process of devolving into a flamewar), "that's not cricket" is a british phrase meaning "it's against the rules, or generally unfair."

dsmiles
2010-08-18, 09:56 AM
I'm not sure, but I believe 3E is to blame for this one. They were the ones that changed the rogue from "skillmonkey" to "skill monkey with substantial damage output". Once a game starts with the assumption that most problems are to be resolved through combat, then it logically follows that all classes must have something to contribute in combat.

I'm thinking that AD&D is to blame. Ooooohhh...my backstab is +4 to hit and x6 damage (at higher levels).

Oracle_Hunter
2010-08-18, 10:02 AM
I'm thinking that AD&D is to blame. Ooooohhh...my backstab is +4 to hit and x6 damage (at higher levels).
Hardly.

If you pulled off a Backstab in AD&D you deserved it.

(1) Sneak up completely unnoticed on an enemy. Yes, this means that they couldn't know you were around.

(2) Strike them in their literal back. This means attacking from behind and - for larger creatures - from above. Oh, and creatures with no vitals? No sneak attack.

(3) Hit. You only get one try.

And then, maybe, you do a boatload of damage. If they weren't immune to the attack anyways. Then you get to be standing behind your enemy (likely still alive) wearing leather armor and with d6 hit die.

Have fun :smalltongue:

Dragosai
2010-08-18, 10:02 AM
What, you mean the core books as in PHB1 PHB2 PHB3? or maybe MM1,2, etc, or maybe DMG1, 2, 3? That's still something like 160 quid I don't need to spend because 3.5 isn't actually as broken as people make out? No ta.



Que? oh, wait, I found it. Yes, note I said emphasis on combat. And I said that its streamlining of combat left me out in the cold. Wanna know why? simple. First off, I never personally need streamlined combat. My players manage to grasp the combat system within about 10 minutes, even the really young newbies (aka our bright and shining next generation) got it within that time. Gee, 10 minutes... But the rolling, the discussion, the tons of options, mean that I actually have time to sit back and think where to go next. I'm not one of those GMs who sit around for five or six hours writing down a plot, I'm one of those GMs who spends 1 hour writing a plot outline, and wings the rest because he knows damn well that his players will deviate from written soon enough, and he'll have to wing it anyway. You're getting annoyed at what, in the end, is an opinion. You play 4E, and love it. Cool. Fine. But the whole point of asking "Do you think 3E/PF/4E is good/bad, and if so why?" is to get people's input. You don't like the input, you asked for it.

Kurald already summed it up quite easily: Everyone has some issue with the rules of Edition X or Game X. For example, in 3.5E, I despise Ray of Stupidity. But the fact is, it's largely subjective. In terms of pure, objective, "this is better/worse", you're going to get squat. You can quite easily say, for example, "combat phases are quicker in 4E"... but is that a good thing? that's up to individual GMs. Me, I like my combat nice and involved, with lots of thinking going on, and flurries of action as everything is described in awe-inspiring/gruesome detail. You, you may well like it quick. But that doesn't make either system better. I've told you why I dislike 4E, subjective as a heckuva lot of it is, but that's the whole point: there is no real, objective measure of which is better, because requirements vary from group to group, sometimes individual to individual, and attacking me because I gave you an answer you didn't like, but was honest... well, that's not cricket.

Whatís the forum thing for posting that a post is good +1?

Well then +1 to you for fully supporting all my points.

If you don't know what I mean by "core books" then again you should not be posting about the subject. I don't post about aircraft design because I know nothing about it.

Listen I am not attacking you personally in anyway but all of your posts about 3.5 vs. 4E are just you saying "yeah me likes 3.5" and thatís great, you go girl and all that jazz, play what you want. My point is that posts like yours do in no way shape or form point out anything that is factually wrong with 4E, it's all just how you approached the game as a whole and didn't understand it that turned you off it, thatís fine. It comes down to if we were debating in front of a judge the judge would rule 99% of your statements as irrelevant to the debate. *If we were going to have a debate about one thing you mentioned say new FR vs. old FR then yes we could have a dialog and see where it goes.

*Note I do not want to have that discussion as I don't give a flying moose knuckle about the different versions of FR, but hopefully you get my point.

Leolo
2010-08-18, 10:03 AM
I'm not sure, but I believe 3E is to blame for this one. They were the ones that changed the rogue from "skillmonkey" to "skill monkey with substantial damage output". Once a game starts with the assumption that most problems are to be resolved through combat, then it logically follows that all classes must have something to contribute in combat.

I do not think this is true, as rogues have a substantial damage output in AD&D, too. At least in theory they are supposed to have.

The problem is not that triple damage on a sneak attack is no substantial amount, but that it is hard to get this sneak attack damage.

So the role is the same as in later editions and rogues where always supposed to sneak behind the enemies lines and attack someone hard. It just did not work that good as it was supposed to be. (At least my AD&D DM has told me this - i am playing a paladin in our AD&D First Edition campaign, so this is second hand knowledge. The rogue is still doing high damage from time to time)

Tequila Sunrise
2010-08-18, 10:16 AM
What, you mean the core books as in PHB1 PHB2 PHB3? or maybe MM1,2, etc, or maybe DMG1, 2, 3?
Don't be fooled by marketing slogans; core means what it has always meant; PHB, DMG and MM. Those're what ya need to play the game, ergo those are core to those of us whose opinions matter [the consumers]. Heck, being such an excellent DM already, you could get away with just PHB and MM. :smallwink:

Erom
2010-08-18, 10:22 AM
What, you mean the core books as in PHB1 PHB2 PHB3? or maybe MM1,2, etc, or maybe DMG1, 2, 3? That's still something like 160 quid I don't need to spend because 3.5 isn't actually as broken as people make out? No ta.

There are 3 things you need to run 4th edition well, only 3. I say this not to disagree with you, as you've obvious made your choice and I respect that, but only to provide information for those that don't know.

Those 3 things are:
* The PHB 1
* The DMG 1
* One month of DDI to unlock the character builder and adventure tools

That's all I use, and I've been playing and DMing 4e for about a year now. The character builder right now gives you all the crunch and a suprising amount of the fluff for every class published. Every feat. Every power. From a book or a magazine or a web form or anything. Along with all the rules you need to run them. It's an entire library for 15 bucks. Amazing.

The adventure tools are the same way. Why buy monster manuals? One tool gives you easily remixable and modifyable and searchable digital copies of every monster every published for 4e.

Everything you need to run the system. Done and done. And when you want to update? One more 1 month subscription to update. 90% of the errata goes into character abilities, and you get all of those.

I really disliked the idea of a monthly fee to game, but given that I end up buying like 1 month every year for updates, and get tools more useful than my entire library of books combined, I've been pretty happy with DDI.

dsmiles
2010-08-18, 10:31 AM
There are 3 things you need to run 4th edition well, only 3. I say this not to disagree with you, as you've obvious made your choice and I respect that, but only to provide information for those that don't know.

Those 3 things are:
* The PHB 1
* The DMG 1
* One month of DDI to unlock the character builder and adventure tools

That's all I use, and I've been playing and DMing 4e for about a year now. The character builder right now gives you all the crunch and a suprising amount of the fluff for every class published. Every feat. Every power. From a book or a magazine or a web form or anything. Along with all the rules you need to run them. It's an entire library for 15 bucks. Amazing.

The adventure tools are the same way. Why buy monster manuals? One tool gives you easily remixable and modifyable and searchable digital copies of every monster every published for 4e.

Everything you need to run the system. Done and done. And when you want to update? One more 1 month subscription to update. 90% of the errata goes into character abilities, and you get all of those.

I really disliked the idea of a monthly fee to game, but given that I end up buying like 1 month every year for updates, and get tools more useful than my entire library of books combined, I've been pretty happy with DDI.

However, DDI automatically integrates the updates and errata. Some of which i don't care for.

Caphi
2010-08-18, 10:32 AM
PHB: Prestidigitation is a default power for all wizards.

And only wizards. This is an issue. There's no way to play with fun low-level arcane tricks without also binding yourself to the playstyle of a wizard. What about presto, or mage hand, was incompatible with heavy blasting (sorceror) or musical buff generation (bard)?


Utility comes in the form of various utility powers and rituals, also default to all wizards.

Goodness, I'm not going to get myself started on rituals.


Arcane power:
there are both illusionist and summoner wizards in here.

They're a joke. The illusions come in packaged turbo-Vancian entities that do one thing only. I don't want "you can make a fake fireball that moves your enemy". I want silent bloody image. But the very idea of players having a spell that encourages and requires creativity is anathema to D&D4.

I'm not even going to start on the summons that stare into space unless the wizard spends a standard action yelling at them to get up and do something.


so yes, wizards are stuff besides a debuff generator :smallsmile:.

Ooh, we can capitalize on hyperbole. They're still a limited field of playstyles that you're slaved to if you want to play with magic tricks.


There is an illusionist Wizard.

See above.


Druids, Artificers, and wizards all have summons. They don't have massive summons, which make one player eat up 5x the time on their turn as other players.

They have effect fields that are called summons.


I believe items can let you have Prestidigitation, at will. If not, it's not that much to ask for.

Right, I'll go spend 800 gp and my hand slot gaining back the ability to do tiny little utility things with magic. Really?


Might be a double post here, sorry if it is. THIS above post is EXACTLY what myself and I think others are talking about; people trying to point out "bad" things about 4E and having no idea of what they speak. Thank you Lord Raziere!

On the flip side, there's this sort of self-congratulatory "oh, the haters are just ignorant" attitude.

I've read D&D4. I've even played D&D4. It was fun wholly on the basis of playing with friends, not on any strength of the system (apart from when we played multiplayer FFT, which is about the one thing it did well on). Mechanically, I'd rather have been playing a system that gave me meaningful tools to interact with the world with.

I'd appreciate it if you not throw accusations at me.


So no one in your group has ever played a wizard, cleric, or druid?

You can be a wizard, cleric, or druid and not override the game. It's very easy, I've done it several times. What's that thing you'd say in this situation?


people trying to point out "bad" things about [system] and having no idea of what they speak.

Oh, right.

This is what Kurald was talking about when he said exaggeration. I accept I do it myself. I've been doing it this post, because I try to know what flaws are in anything whether I like it or hate it, and for the purposes of this thread, that means D&D4.

Fuzzie Fuzz
2010-08-18, 10:33 AM
...and AD&D gave xp for treasure.

I mean, umm...forget it. 4e has its flaws (a major flaw being the sheer amount of errata and updates that you have to pay $10/month to get), 3.0/3.5 also has its flaws (a major flaw being most of the splatbooks seemed to be published un-edited), I'm not sure which had worse flaws. I now play 4e (primarily, with a little 3.5 thrown in for the Iron Kingdoms setting). Of course, I play without most of the updates and errata, so I can't say how those affect the system.

Errata's free.


Where did I say that this is a bad thing? I just said that it's a significant departure from OD&D, and that it's moving the same direction WoW has gone compared to previous MMORPGs.

Compare these 4:

A OD&D fighter, pretty much just hits it with his sword.
A Everquest Classic warrior (classic through velious); they also pretty much just hit it with their swords; they had some other buttons that basically didn't do much of anything and some long cooldowns (defensive, etc that they get in the 51-60 range). This changed later, especially so once WoW was released, and the warrior gradually got more abilities, and worked more like a spellcaster.
A World of Warcraft Warrior, which has a ton of abilities (more buttons than you can fit on the bar really), some on long cool downs, some on short cooldowns, some pretty much at will, stances.
a 4e Fighter, which has a fair amount of abilities, some on long cooldowns (daily), some on short cooldowns (encounter), some at will


WoW and 4e are toward one extreme, OD&D is on the other end, and classic Everquest was somewhere in the middle, though it's closer to the OD&D side than the WoW side.

If it's not a bad thing, then what's the point of a comparison to video games? 4e being "too videogamey" is often cited as a reason why it is a bad system, so backing up that statement should support the greater conclusion. You can't both say that 4e is bad because it's like a tabletop videogame and that it's like a videogame because of this mechanic that's a good thing.


But the very idea of players having a spell that encourages and requires creativity is anathema to D&D4.

Now see, ad hominem attacks like this will get you nowhere but a flamewar fast. However, I am hard pressed not to respond. There is NOTHING about the 4e mechanics that somehow "outlaw" creativity. The players that were creative in AD&D, 1e, 2e, 3e and 3.5 will still play creatively in 4e. The uncreative players have played uncreatively throughout all previous editions and continue to do so in 4e. I once had my players take out half of a relatively large encounter through a very clever ambush involving Ghost Sound and Scorching Burst. Later, Ghost Sound and Light were used to terrify an opponent into submission. So don't say that there's no creativity in 4e.

dsmiles
2010-08-18, 10:40 AM
Errata's free.

Fashionably late to the party, huh?

Shpadoinkle
2010-08-18, 10:44 AM
3.5e is built more to simulate a world.

4e (and soon 4.5e) is built more like a miniatures game. Yeah, you can try to simulate a world with it, but that's not the primary focus the designers had in mind. It's more streamlined, and it can be fun.

But it doesn't feel like the D&D I've been familiar with since I was six years old. 3e is a fresh coat of paint on that, and if you scratch the surface you can definitely see it. But 4e doesn't feel like that. It feels like a minis game.

I think 4e would have been a lot better received if they hadn't forced the D&D title on it and released it as something else.

Earthwalker
2010-08-18, 10:45 AM
At the moment I am playing 3.5 DnD and I do like the system but one thing that I donít like is how Metagamey you have to be to get by.

Currently the game I play in we do not use a battle grid.

I have read the rules for 4e and was hoping to ask a couple of questions on this thread.

Can you play 4e at all without a battle grid and figures ?
Has anyone done this and how did it work out, did some classes lose abilities because of this ?

Could someone who didnít know the rules still have a productive role in combat, simply saying I want to attack x, I am think no. Every player needs to know how their abilities work, how much do people need to know how much others abilities work ?

Fuzzie Fuzz
2010-08-18, 10:46 AM
Fashionably late to the party, huh?

So I missed a post resulting in me typing an extra two words. Sue me.

The rest of my post stands.

Evard
2010-08-18, 10:50 AM
"Doesn't feel like DnD" I hear this all the time and I want edit it to say "Doesn't feel like 3.5DnD" Or "Doesn't feel like the last edition I played"

Fuzzie Fuzz
2010-08-18, 10:51 AM
Can you play 4e at all without a battle grid and figures ?
Probably not, at least without difficulty.

Could someone who didnít know the rules still have a productive role in combat, simply saying I want to attack x, I am think no. Every player needs to know how their abilities work, how much do people need to know how much others abilities work ?
If one player didn't know the rules but others did, they could help him decide what to do. If no one knew the rules, then it wouldn't work at all, but that's true for any game. (Free Parking anyone?) However, the abilities are fairly simple, and the attacks work in similar fashions, so picking it up is really not very difficult, especially at low levels. You don't really need to know about how other PCs work, just your own. The DM should know how everyone's powers work, but it's a small price to pay for the ease of DMing 4e.

dsmiles
2010-08-18, 10:52 AM
So I missed a post resulting in me typing an extra two words. Sue me.

The rest of my post stands.

Consider yourself sued, sir! I have brought my lawyer and his assistants.
http://www.ghoulfriday.com/files/ghoulfm/blogs/2009/June_July/zombie_lawyer.jpg
:eek:

Evard
2010-08-18, 10:54 AM
Anytime I played DnD before 4.0 I tried to get the people to use a battle grid since its just simpler no matter what edition you are playing.

Played in a game of 3.5 with 7 players... That SUCKED cause people kept forgetting where everyone was... It resulted in a rogue riding on the back of the raging barbarian's back >.<

The Big Dice
2010-08-18, 10:57 AM
I'm not a 4e fan. I never liked games that are heavily based on using miniatures at every possible juncture. But that's just my personal slant on things. I could care less about the mechanics and presentation, anything that wants me to invest in battlemats and minis is a pain in my opinion, plain and simple.

I'm not particularly a fan of 3.5 either. It's fiddly and stuff is scattered across a selection of books that weighs a good 30 pounds and is therefore far too heavy to drag to game sessions.

These days I'm far more interested in the so-called Retro Clone games. These are free to download recreations of older editions of D&D, made under the OGL. Things like OSRIC (http://www.knights-n-knaves.com/osric/), which is an AD&D clone. Or DarkDungeons (http://darkdungeonsblog.wordpress.com), which is a clone of the 1991 Rules Compendium edition of Basic D&D.

Kurald Galain
2010-08-18, 11:09 AM
So the role is the same as in later editions and rogues where always supposed to sneak behind the enemies lines and attack someone hard. It just did not work that good as it was supposed to be. (At least my AD&D DM has told me this - i am playing a paladin in our AD&D First Edition campaign, so this is second hand knowledge. The rogue is still doing high damage from time to time)
The difference? Since 3E, the rogue still attacks somebody hard, but he doesn't need to sneak behind enemy lines in order to do so. As a result, they are doing high damage much more frequently.

Mind you, I'm not saying this is a bad thing. Far from it. But the notion that rogues should outdamage fighters on a regular basis really did not exist in 2E.

The Glyphstone
2010-08-18, 11:10 AM
So I missed a post resulting in me typing an extra two words. Sue me.

The rest of my post stands.

If you insist.


http://i126.photobucket.com/albums/p116/ArcherYiZe/lawsuit2.png

Kesnit
2010-08-18, 11:11 AM
And only wizards. This is an issue. There's no way to play with fun low-level arcane tricks without also binding yourself to the playstyle of a wizard. What about presto, or mage hand, was incompatible with heavy blasting (sorceror) or musical buff generation (bard)?

Gnomes can take a feat that gives Mage Hand and Presdigitation as encounter powers. I can't see why you couldn't houserule any Arcane could do the same.


They're a joke. The illusions come in packaged turbo-Vancian entities that do one thing only. I don't want "you can make a fake fireball that moves your enemy". I want silent bloody image. But the very idea of players having a spell that encourages and requires creativity is anathema to D&D4.

You are contradicting yourself. Mage Hand and Preso both require creativity, and both are in 4E.


I'm not even going to start on the summons that stare into space unless the wizard spends a standard action yelling at them to get up and do something.

Except they don't. They get AoO's, they mark enemies, they debuff enemies.


Mechanically, I'd rather have been playing a system that gave me meaningful tools to interact with the world with.

Don't blame the system for your lack of creativity.


You can be a wizard, cleric, or druid and not override the game. It's very easy, I've done it several times. What's that thing you'd say in this situation?

It takes a lot more effort to play Tier 1 and not override the game, especially at higher levels. If you like putting all that effort in, good for you!

CarpeGuitarrem
2010-08-18, 11:18 AM
They're a joke. The illusions come in packaged turbo-Vancian entities that do one thing only. I don't want "you can make a fake fireball that moves your enemy". I want silent bloody image. But the very idea of players having a spell that encourages and requires creativity is anathema to D&D4.

I'm not even going to start on the summons that stare into space unless the wizard spends a standard action yelling at them to get up and do something.

Ooh, we can capitalize on hyperbole. They're still a limited field of playstyles that you're slaved to if you want to play with magic tricks.

It's called refluffing. :smallwink:

With the right flavoring, you can even get a DM to work with you. The difference here between 3.5 and 4E is that 4E lets the DM exercise control, and then make exceptions for cool ideas. 3.5 tried to make rules for the cool ideas, and that backfired when they combined in unexpected ways. 4E leaves a lot more to the judgment of the DM.

dsmiles
2010-08-18, 11:22 AM
It takes a lot more effort to play Tier 1 and not override the game, especially at higher levels. If you like putting all that effort in, good for you!

This is another of my gripes against 3.x, the "Tier System." why aren't all classes created equal? 4e! w00t!

Caphi
2010-08-18, 11:37 AM
Gnomes can take a feat that gives Mage Hand and Presdigitation as encounter powers. I can't see why you couldn't houserule any Arcane could do the same.

Which is still spending resources to fix the basic problem that only wizards get it, so you can't be a sorceror and enjoy them. "Do you want to recolor things? You have to be a wizard, with everything that entails. What, you want to do DAMAGE and do those things? Don't be foolish, sorcerors are nothing but blasters!"


You are contradicting yourself. Mage Hand and Preso both require creativity, and both are in 4E.

A very rare exception, and available to only one playstyle (mass debuff/field control).


Except they don't. They get AoO's, they mark enemies, they debuff enemies.

So they're field generators. They aren't creatures. They don't have wills of their own.


Don't blame the system for your lack of creativity.

I don't even know what this means.


It takes a lot more effort to play Tier 1 and not override the game, especially at higher levels. If you like putting all that effort in, good for you!

No, it really doesn't. I've played multiple clerics without replacing the party. It's easy. Just don't do what the party's already doing. You know, the same thing you do every time you pick a class. Really, D&D4 players should be familiar with the idea of covering roles that aren't already covered when generating characters and parties.

CarpeGuitarrem
2010-08-18, 11:45 AM
Caphi, the only thing that makes summons "field generators" and not creatures in their own right is A: a rigid, unyielding adherence to the rules and B: an insistence that all fluff be supported by crunch, which links back to A.

3.5 was all about "it has to be supported by the rules", and not about improvisation. Any fluff was reflected in kind by the crunch. 4th Edition old-schooled things, ironically, in some respects. It let improvisation back into the game quite easily. It introduced a number system that was well-standardized, so that you could easily gauge what benefit to give to improvisation.

In short, the only thing stopping you from doing these things in 4E isn't the rules so much as the insistence on treating the rules as absolute. D&D has always been about tweaking, nudging, and even disregarding the rules for the sake of the adventure

Caphi
2010-08-18, 12:09 PM
Caphi, the only thing that makes summons "field generators" and not creatures in their own right is A: a rigid, unyielding adherence to the rules and B: an insistence that all fluff be supported by crunch, which links back to A.

3.5 was all about "it has to be supported by the rules", and not about improvisation. Any fluff was reflected in kind by the crunch. 4th Edition old-schooled things, ironically, in some respects. It let improvisation back into the game quite easily. It introduced a number system that was well-standardized, so that you could easily gauge what benefit to give to improvisation.

In short, the only thing stopping you from doing these things in 4E isn't the rules so much as the insistence on treating the rules as absolute. D&D has always been about tweaking, nudging, and even disregarding the rules for the sake of the adventure

There is a very obvious disconnect between the rules and what you say are the events in the game world. This isn't a peasant railgun thing that you have to work to set up. This is a creature that comes into existence and then does nothing unless the wizard does nothing. If I were a summoner, saying "I spend my standard action attacking with my fire warrior" is shattering disbelief. (It's not even the worst attack on my suspension that summon wizards have, either - that honor goes to the post-errata storm pillar.)

Kylarra
2010-08-18, 12:12 PM
Oddly enough, I don't have any issues with the idea that a caster of some sort needs to spend the majority of their concentration directing the actions of their summoned critter.

dsmiles
2010-08-18, 12:15 PM
Oddly enough, I don't have any issues with the idea that a caster of some sort needs to spend the majority of their concentration directing the actions of their summoned critter.

Me neither. It seems in-line with my views on how summons should work.

Eorran
2010-08-18, 12:18 PM
Can you play 4e at all without a battle grid and figures ?
Has anyone done this and how did it work out, did some classes lose abilities because of this ?
I play on a semi-regular basis with two different people: one adores the battle grid, the other loathes it. I've played both ways.

Without the grid, we still use a whiteboard & markers, or pencil & paper. I've done that for every combat in any edition of any game. The players do end up asking "how far am I to that Ogre?" or "can I hit both these Orcs and miss the Gnome?" but no-one really lost class abilities.

With the grid, players have to ask fewer questions, but movement in particular felt odd, like moving chess pieces. It made the combat rounds feel a bit more disjointed. All in all, I generally don't use the grid.



Could someone who didnít know the rules still have a productive role in combat, simply saying I want to attack x, I am think no. Every player needs to know how their abilities work, how much do people need to know how much others abilities work ?

Every player has some responsibility to learn what his character can and can't do. If you have a new-to-RPGs player, give them a Ranger. It's the simplest 4e class to learn, and if they don't really care about the game, the Ranger can default to a single at-will power and not lose much.

Addressing the original question, I really enjoy playing 4e, but I learned never to convert earlier edition characters - the system is too different for that. I much prefer DMing 4e to earlier editions, I get a lot of mileage out of the Monster Builder, and I find it easy to rule on-the-fly for things like skill DCs. My players have managed to come up with some very creative uses for rituals, and I love using rituals as plot-magic.

kc0bbq
2010-08-18, 12:26 PM
There is a very obvious disconnect between the rules and what you say are the events in the game world. This isn't a peasant railgun thing that you have to work to set up. This is a creature that comes into existence and then does nothing unless the wizard does nothing. If I were a summoner, saying "I spend my standard action attacking with my fire warrior" is shattering disbelief. (It's not even the worst attack on my suspension that summon wizards have, either - that honor goes to the post-errata storm pillar.)So they model magic as taking effort to control and it shatters disbelief? Why? What makes magic fundamentally self controlling? Who says magic has to be a series of state machines? That you don't have to expend effort to get controlled creatures to do anything? It's a better system because magic doesn't just happen because you're cool.


4e (and soon 4.5e) is built more like a miniatures game. Yeah, you can try to simulate a world with it, but that's not the primary focus the designers had in mind. It's more streamlined, and it can be fun.
OD&D/BECMI/AD&D/what have you were all more modelled on a miniatures game than 4E. It was Chainmail + Roleplaying. Movement was still in inches for playing on sand tables.

You can design a world in 4E just fine. It didn't take much effort at all to recreate my world in 4E at all, and it has been the home of multiple campaigns using multiple D&D revisions AND other systems. It works just fine. In reality, a lot of the world runs better on 4E. Though I did have to remap thousands and thousands of square miles into 5' squares. :smallcool:

We play as effectively without miniatures as we do with them. Imagination works wonders.

Dragosai
2010-08-18, 12:26 PM
Originally Posted by Dragosai
So no one in your group has ever played a wizard, cleric, or druid?

You can be a wizard, cleric, or druid and not override the game. It's very easy, I've done it several times. What's that thing you'd say in this situation?


I have pointed this out before but people never seem to get it. Sure you can play a cleric/wizard/druid and not break the game do to your god like power, but you still "break" the game. Here is my example; person A is playing a caster and is playing it in a way as to not "break" the game. Then a simple situation comes along say person A needs to save the life of someone they care about, another PC, their beloved peasant village etc. It is very easy to be in that life or death situation where person A playing to not "break" the game can keep playing that way and let the person or people die, or can unleash the power they have been just holding back for no good reason and save them.
This is the problem with just how "broken" 3.5 is. I know if I was a survivor of said village and found out hundreds died because you choose not to wag you fingers and say a few words, well then person A would be even worse than the person/force that destroyed the town. Letís say you are not just "playing dumb" but house rule out all the broken crap (ha ha ha good luck) back to square one why bother using a system you would have to re-write from the ground up?
And lastly my real world example; if you want a motorcycle buy one, don't buy a truck and then start removing wheels to make it into something that it can never be.

Lastly Caphi, you hate 4E we get it, stop trying to justify it as it is just making me laugh.....or if that as your goal then good job and keep it up!

dsmiles
2010-08-18, 12:27 PM
If you have a new-to-RPGs player, give them a Ranger.

Actually, I just taught my kids 4e (ages 11, 10, 9 and 5) and the youngest one played a fighter better than most adults. "Oh, you mean I get to hit it even though I missed?" (Reaping Strike). "If I hit this one, I can hit this one too?" (Cleave) "I get to roll HOW MANY dice?" (Brute Strike) The oldest one took well to the Gun Mage (http://www.bodgedtogether.com/gunmageclassabilities.html#). My 10-year-old daughter made a splendid control wizard, and my 9 year-old-son made a hell of a cleric (didn't like it much, though).

I will have to disagree with the ranger thing, sorry.

Caphi
2010-08-18, 12:28 PM
Lastly Caphi, you hate 4E we get it, stop trying to justify it as it is just making me laugh.....or if that as your goal then good job and keep it up!

I'm sorry for writing down my ideas to a public forum for discussion?

Oh wait, I'm not sorry for that all.

Demonix
2010-08-18, 12:29 PM
@Demonix: Problems 1, and 2 are DM problems, not game system problems.

EDIT: I'm just not seeing problem 3 as a problem. This is what homebrew is for.

Problem 4 is a publisher problem, and you don't have to use the updates/errata, remember, "Rules are just guidelines."

I agree that 1 is a DM problem, but 2 is a player problem because they didn't ask and were told no, they never tried it in the first place (there was one instance where someone DID do something like this, but he had been playing since AD&D).

I will even go so far as to say that these may not be problems with the players, but a problem with the -perception- of 4th edition. 4th seems to have rules for everything and powers (fairly) well defined/described. By its nature, this level of definition can stifle the creativity and imagination of players and DMs alike.

I sometimes get the feeling that we would see more dynamic combat if even something so small as the fluff description was removed from all the powers, and let the players come up with thier own effects. If we work from the assumption that most people will take the path of least resistance. What would be more likely to be remembered:

1) I use inspiring word on you
2) "I didn't tell you you could die yet! Get UP!"

or

2) I'll use knight's move to let you take another move action
3) "YOU! get over there and cover the sorcerer! MOVE!"

Still, its a quibble. If you find good players this isnt an issue, but I don't think that 4th ed really ENCOURAGES this sort of play. The mechanics DO feel like a videogame probably because all the actions are so well described.

dsmiles
2010-08-18, 12:32 PM
Fortunately, anyone can re-fluff a power. Those descriptions aren't crunch.

Kesnit
2010-08-18, 01:07 PM
Which is still spending resources to fix the basic problem that only wizards get it, so you can't be a sorceror and enjoy them. "Do you want to recolor things? You have to be a wizard, with everything that entails. What, you want to do DAMAGE and do those things? Don't be foolish, sorcerors are nothing but blasters!"

In 3.5, you had to be a WIZ or SORC in order to use those spells. How is that fair to Clerics or Warmages?

The fact is, every system has had something that you had to be a certain class (or one of a small number of classes) in order to do. 4E didn't change that.


A very rare exception, and available to only one playstyle (mass debuff/field control).

And other play styles of have something only they can do.


So they're field generators. They aren't creatures. They don't have wills of their own.

Technically, neither do 3.5 summons. Splatwise, they are individuals, but the player still controlled them. And even IC, the PC controlled their summons to a certain extent.

Also, I notice you have changed your tune from "they just stand around on the battlefield."


I don't even know what this means.

I'll rephrase... Many powers can be used out of combat if you are creative. Don't blame the system because you can't come up with a solution that doesn't involve "I cast a spell."


No, it really doesn't. I've played multiple clerics without replacing the party. It's easy. Just don't do what the party's already doing.

You just proved my point. You had to make an effort NOT to duplicate the party. Whether it was by spell choice or whatever, you made the effort to limit yourself.

tcrudisi
2010-08-18, 01:16 PM
I will even go so far as to say that these may not be problems with the players, but a problem with the -perception- of 4th edition. 4th seems to have rules for everything and powers (fairly) well defined/described. By its nature, this level of definition can stifle the creativity and imagination of players and DMs alike.

I sometimes get the feeling that we would see more dynamic combat if even something so small as the fluff description was removed from all the powers, and let the players come up with thier own effects. If we work from the assumption that most people will take the path of least resistance. What would be more likely to be remembered:

1) I use inspiring word on you
2) "I didn't tell you you could die yet! Get UP!"

or

2) I'll use knight's move to let you take another move action
3) "YOU! get over there and cover the sorcerer! MOVE!"

Still, its a quibble. If you find good players this isnt an issue, but I don't think that 4th ed really ENCOURAGES this sort of play. The mechanics DO feel like a videogame probably because all the actions are so well described.

As a DM, I encourage it. In my last group, I handed one of the players a description for all of his powers. I asked him, "Instead of telling me what power you use, just describe it for us and then roll." He did -- and suddenly every player wanted to do the same thing. They loved it.

The next step was to encourage them to diversify it a little bit more, to change what the "given flavor text" said. They did, and suddenly before you knew it, nobody was using "Scorching Burst" and instead they were "summoning a ball of fire in my hand, launching it at the orc so that it explodes, engulfing the orc and the two goblins near him." If they hit, I describe how the clothing looks charred and their flesh turns bright pink.

I think the flavor text that is given is a good place to start, but is by no means the only flavor text that has to be used.

Eorran
2010-08-18, 01:39 PM
Actually, I just taught my kids 4e (ages 11, 10, 9 and 5) and the youngest one played a fighter better than most adults. "Oh, you mean I get to hit it even though I missed?" (Reaping Strike). "If I hit this one, I can hit this one too?" (Cleave) "I get to roll HOW MANY dice?" (Brute Strike) The oldest one took well to the Gun Mage (http://www.bodgedtogether.com/gunmageclassabilities.html#). My 10-year-old daughter made a splendid control wizard, and my 9 year-old-son made a hell of a cleric (didn't like it much, though).

I will have to disagree with the ranger thing, sorry.

Let me rephrase, then: if you have a player who has little interest in learning the game mechanics, who wants a mechanically simple character, a Ranger (especially archer ranger) is probably the simplest 4e class to play. If you have someone who has little experience but lots of interest or enthusiasm, any 4e class can be learned relatively quickly.

I also houserule that the first level-up after character creation has unlimited retraining, to allow the "sorting out" period where you figure out what you really want your character to be.

Caphi
2010-08-18, 01:44 PM
In 3.5, you had to be a WIZ or SORC in order to use those spells. How is that fair to Clerics or Warmages?

Clerics and druids had create water. That spell is fantastic. In D&D4, you don't even get anything if you're a sorceror. Oh sorry, you get new and interesting ways to damage the enemy.


Technically, neither do 3.5 summons. Splatwise, they are individuals, but the player still controlled them. And even IC, the PC controlled their summons to a certain extent.

Also, I notice you have changed your tune from "they just stand around on the battlefield."


They still stand around on the battlefield. They just have a passive field effect as well.


I'll rephrase... Many powers can be used out of combat if you are creative. Don't blame the system because you can't come up with a solution that doesn't involve "I cast a spell."

"The system doesn't give me tools I can be really creative with!"
"Yeah, well, you just don't want to be creative."

Really? Is that seriously your argument?


You just proved my point. You had to make an effort NOT to duplicate the party. Whether it was by spell choice or whatever, you made the effort to limit yourself.

And I make the same effort when I choose not to be a stealthy character in a party that already has a rogue, or a blaster in one that already has high DPR and could use some control or support. Your point?

Jayabalard
2010-08-18, 01:45 PM
If it's not a bad thing, then what's the point of a comparison to video games? 4e being "too videogamey" is often cited as a reason why it is a bad system, so backing up that statement should support the greater conclusion. I don't think it's generally cited as a reason that it's a bad system; rather, it's cited as a reason that someone doesn't like the system.


You can't both say that 4e is bad because it's like a tabletop videogame and that it's like a videogame because of this mechanic that's a good thing.


[quote]Now see, ad hominem attacks like this will get you nowhere but a flamewar fast. However, I am hard pressed not to respond. There is NOTHING about the 4e mechanics that somehow "outlaw" creativity.While I agree that his statements are quite inflammatory, I think you may have misconstrued what was said. It's not that 4e outlaws creativity, but that the idea that a spell that requires creativity to be useful at all is counter to the design of 4e, where things are supposed to be useful out of the box. In previous editions, illusions were precisely as useful as the player was clever, but in 4e, not so much.

Sipex
2010-08-18, 01:50 PM
Gee, I'm sure glad this thread didn't turn into another arguement about whether 4e sucks or not.

I thought we were over this.

Jayabalard
2010-08-18, 01:53 PM
<snip>I can't see why you couldn't houserule<snip>Generally, this isn't a valid counter argument when people are discussing the pro's and con's of a game's design.

Don't get me wrong, I still think it's usually worth bringing up in most other discussions.

Dragosai
2010-08-18, 02:05 PM
Clerics and druids had create water. That spell is fantastic. In D&D4, you don't even get anything if you're a sorceror. Oh sorry, you get new and interesting ways to damage the enemy.

Wow really, do you still not understand?

4E Sorceror spells - Unseen Aid, Spacial Trip, Sorcerous Sirocco, Deep Shroud, Energetic Flight, Extinguishing Rain, Lightning Shift, Subtelty of the Great Wyrm, Devour Magic, Fog Form, Avatars of Chaos, Breath of the Desert Dragon, Dominant Winds......

Off the top of my head those are just some powers, those are not even including skill powers, all of the above have nothing to do with damage, they are all utility spells a sorceror can know.

Again you keep posting about things that could not be more wrong if you tried.

Reluctance
2010-08-18, 02:09 PM
Dragosai, I'm with you that 4e is the game I'd rather play right now, but could you lay off defending it just a touch? The 3.5'ers have been a lot less "4e is teh suck" and a lot more "I get the appeal, I just prefer 3.5's strengths". Gravious and anybody else interested have probably picked up the comparative strengths/weaknesses of both systems, so I'm not really seeing what this point-by-point defense of yours is meant to accomplish.

Sipex
2010-08-18, 02:22 PM
To add, I play a 4e sorc and Deep Shroud is my favouritist spell ever.

Creates a heavily obscuring fog which covers you and anyone adjacent (Minor action keeps it up) so provides a portable place for stealth outside of battle and in battle provides cover for your ranged units (since, as a sorc, you usually hang around them anyways).

Creativity of powers is all dependant on DM. I've got players who use their attack spells out of battle to do great things.

Ravens_cry
2010-08-18, 02:27 PM
This is another of my gripes against 3.x, the "Tier System." why aren't all classes created equal? 4e! w00t!
Just to show how the world is made of different people, that's one of the things I didn't like, something that casts Defenestrating Sphere on my Suspension of Disbelief.
A wizard uses magic, which is, by default things we can't do in little ol' reality. A warrior wields a blade or a blunt object, whether at range (arrows and bolts) on a stick (spears and pole arms) or on a short handle (swords, maces, daggers). Certain amount of impossible feats slip by, because heroism is partly doing the impossible, and it's cool. But 4E takes this too far, in my view, making the mundane too magical.
You like it, fine, but it isn't the kind of thing I like.

Caphi
2010-08-18, 02:31 PM
4E Sorceror spells - Unseen Aid, Spacial Trip, Sorcerous Sirocco, Deep Shroud, Energetic Flight, Extinguishing Rain, Lightning Shift, Subtelty of the Great Wyrm, Devour Magic, Fog Form, Avatars of Chaos, Breath of the Desert Dragon, Dominant Winds......

Right. The ones you get seven of, ever, each of which comes at a steep, steep opportunity cost (see point 1), and with the exception of dominant winds, saddled with a very tight frequency restriction to boot. How could I forget?

Dominant winds, by the way, is great. It's an automatic pick that does a simple but versatile job, and for the most part doesn't have terrible restrictions all over it as to when, where, and how often it can be used. I can even overlook it being totally unavailable until level 16.

Powers like these are in D&D4. If I ever said otherwise, it was hyperbole. But finding them is like finding a fossil in the desert. Each character might get one.

I want to solve problems in the game by combining my mind with the tools the game gives me. D&D4 doesn't give tools. Other than some numbers going up, everyone is very slightly above a perfectly normal human - until they enter Combat Mode and pull out various types of weapons and shoot them at the enemy.

I would accept Utility Powers if more of them actually gave a new, useful ability to the character. But especially at the low levels, too many are simply "+5 to some skill or check", and the ones that do represent a genuinely new ability for the character are either restricted in what they can be used for by their nature or by their frequency, if not both. Dominant winds is a rare and precious exception. Prestidigitation is another.

And that's ignoring that many of them, including Paragon and Epic-derived ones and quite a startling number of Martial ones, are purely combat tricks. Spatial trip is occasionally useful out of combat, but most of the time, its utility application is no more than flair.

(Devour magic? Really? You're bringing a spell whose entire stated use is "make a zone go away" into a discussion of spells that are flexible enough to use to solve non-HP-removing encounters?)

Dragosai
2010-08-18, 02:45 PM
Dragosai, I'm with you that 4e is the game I'd rather play right now, but could you lay off defending it just a touch? The 3.5'ers have been a lot less "4e is teh suck" and a lot more "I get the appeal, I just prefer 3.5's strengths". Gravious and anybody else interested have probably picked up the comparative strengths/weaknesses of both systems, so I'm not really seeing what this point-by-point defense of yours is meant to accomplish.

This is going to sound harsher then I mean it to but maybe re-read my other posts then? I am not posting about anyone pointing out flaws with 4E, I am posting about others who are trying to point out flaws but really are only pointing out their own ignorance of 4E.

I guess I will stoop real low and give an example and then maybe everyone can understand why this is such an annoyance.
My example will be me posting about why 3.5 is a bad system in the style of the posters that post about 4E being a bad system by stating things that have nothing to do with the system and/or are just factually wrong:


So 3.5 is awful because there are no rules for making air planes. Also there are no rules for shooting guns out of a moving car. I also don't like how there are no characters that can use swords. I got sick of DMing for 3.5 because of the rule that says I have to use dice in all my games. What really put me off it is when I found out the elf paladins can't have pointy ears.


Yeah ok do I need to go on? Anyone who thinks I am exaggerating, well yes to a bit I am, but really this is how I read all these posts trying to point out bad things with 4E.

Again I am not saying 4E is the best and everyone should play it, all I am saying is that there are real fact based issues that hundreds of posters have stated about what is flawed with 3.5 and I have yet to see anything like that for 4E. Instead it is all posts like my mock above, they make no sense and most of the time state things that are just wrong. I am not saying a personís opinion that they dislike 4E is wrong, I am saying that the reasons people cite for their dislike do not back up their opinion at all.

So someoneís opinion is just that and everyone has different likes/dislikes right?

But if I say "In my opinion I hate the sky" then state, to back up my claim "I hate the sky because it is always punching me in the face" well I think people get why this is a problem when having a discussion about something.

I'll even put it one more way, something we have all ran into in our lives.
Have you ever had a discussion about a movie or book, or TV show that you really like and someone else says "oh I hated that movie!" and then they start to spout off reasons why and the whole time you are thinking oh dear merciful crap did they even see/read the same movie/book I am talking about? Yeah same deal here.