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CyberThread
2014-07-31, 12:04 AM
What do you think ..7 years?

HunterOfJello
2014-07-31, 12:18 AM
No way to tell. We haven't even seen the PHB yet.

I imagine that this version is designed to last longer and sell books in a more efficient manner than the other editions (hopefully with a different method than 4e used), but it's impossible to tell right now.

Envyus
2014-07-31, 12:21 AM
No way to tell. We haven't even seen the PHB yet.

I imagine that this version is designed to last longer and sell books in a more efficient manner than the other editions (hopefully with a different method than 4e used), but it's impossible to tell right now.

Well they stated in an interview that they plan on a slower release schedule for books so they can avoid bloat and allow people to finish the stuff they sold before they send out another.

rlc
2014-07-31, 12:22 AM
sounds about right. like i said once before, the time between 4e and 5e was the same amount of time between different video game generations. and even modern games with all of their expansion packs (which i'm pretty sure d&d started with all of the extra books they put out) follow the same basic rules: release game, wait, expansion, wait, expansion, wait, start over with next version.
7 years sounds good. people just need to realize that it doesn't make any sense to have a single edition for 15 or 20 years anymore.

Inevitability
2014-07-31, 12:44 AM
3.0 lasted 3 years, and then 5 more with the 3.5 reboot.
4.0 lasted 6 years.
7 years sounds the most likely to me, too.

Tholomyes
2014-07-31, 12:52 AM
I'd imagine it'll depend somewhat on how much they find they can support it with supplements. Good supplements, which can expand it beyond it's simplistic base, to be more complex could have it go a while. If supplements are only modest quality, I don't see it going nearly as long. 5e, from all appearances, seems to have the least character customization options of any edition since TSR (probably including Essentials). If they can manage this by adding more worthwhile feats (rather than stuff like Tough or Resilient, which from what I've heard, are essentially just numerical bonuses) and subclasses with customization internal to the subclass, such as ToB inspired maneuver systems (as well as further supporting the Battlemaster's maneuver pool), I could see this being a pretty long lasting edition. Otherwise, I don't know.

Ultimately, it's at Hasbro's discretion, same as it's been for 3e and 4e. Largely, it seems, when book sales slow down, they turn their sights to the next edition, to wash, rinse and repeat.

akaddk
2014-07-31, 01:01 AM
Over 9,000.

Merc_Kilsek
2014-07-31, 01:06 AM
7 years sounds good. people just need to realize that it doesn't make any sense to have a single edition for 15 or 20 years anymore.

I spent a little time reading some of the stuff on their Facebook site; started to read the comments. Think I will avoid doing that again; some people are really hostile on their opinions. I've been surprise (enlighten?) to the number of people that complain about 5th and hold 2nd up like it was the golden child. I like 2nd alright from my memories playing it in high-school but it has been 25-ish years - I don't think it is unreasonable to say that some new ideas have been discovered to improve D&D.

TheOOB
2014-07-31, 02:50 AM
WotC claims that they are trying to make this edition last longer, but without a crystal ball it's pretty impossible to tell.

Thing is, game design changes and (hopefully) improves over time, and with the internet it changes faster than ever before. Decisions WotC makes now may not make sense 5 years from now, so we'll have to wait and see.

Lokiare
2014-07-31, 05:04 AM
I would say going with the trends of each edition being around a quarter of the previous edition that 5e will last 6 months. Then again mearls could have been ordered to make an 'eternal' D&D that will always be on shelves before shutting down the D&D side of WotC. There is no way to know.

Millennium
2014-07-31, 06:16 AM
Over the last few editions, I've come to think that Hasbro is trying to adopt a business model not unlike that of home video game consoles. This has some major repercussions for 5e: It is scheduled to be replaced sometime in the next 6 or 7 years.
If development of 6e has not already begun, then it will begin at some point in the next 12 months (though we will not hear anything about it for several years yet).
If things go badly for 5e, then 6e will be rushed out to replace it, possibly under a different name. Otherwise, even if 6e's development is completed, it will be held back until the scheduled time to replace 5e.
Even if things go gangbusters for 5e, this will not stop it from being replaced.

Tholomyes
2014-07-31, 06:31 AM
I would say going with the trends of each edition being around a quarter of the previous edition that 5e will last 6 months. Then again mearls could have been ordered to make an 'eternal' D&D that will always be on shelves before shutting down the D&D side of WotC. There is no way to know.

OD&D: 1974-1977 (3 years)
AD&D 1e: 1977-1989 (12 years)
AD&D 2e: 1989-2000 (11 years)
3e (Both 3.0 & 3.5): 2000-2008 (8 years)
4e: 2008-2014 (6 years)
5e: 2014-????

Of course, if you're talking about when the last books were released for each edition:

OD&D: 1974-1976 (2 years)
AD&D 1e: 1977-1988 (11 years)
AD&D 2e: 1989-1996 (7 years)
3e (Both 3.0 & 3.5): 2000-2007 (7 years)
4e: 2008-2012 (4 years)
5e: 2014-????

Either way, not even close to each edition being a quarter of the previous edition's length.

SpawnOfMorbo
2014-07-31, 06:52 AM
If the business model is to replicate videogame releases, then that would be a good thing.

If they put effort into each game and make solid games I could see the D&D line being a lot like the FF line of games. Each edition has different rules and a different world around it, just like going from one final fantasy game to another. I still crack out each of my Final Fantasy games from time to time and play for hours. I wish d&d would be like this, where I have tons of options on editions and I can pick and choose with my friends which to play.

I hate how people think if they try or play a different game or edition then it takes away from their edition. People need to calm the hell down.

zorb25
2014-07-31, 06:53 AM
WotC claims that they are trying to make this edition last longer, but without a crystal ball it's pretty impossible to tell.

Thing is, game design changes and (hopefully) improves over time, and with the internet it changes faster than ever before. Decisions WotC makes now may not make sense 5 years from now, so we'll have to wait and see.

I suspect ,that these claims are mostly marketing talk. You as customer are more likely to invest yourself into the product, if you know it will last long, so now they claim, that they will prolong the cycle to get more people, also 4 ed was kinda short.

the simple truth is that even RPGs have shelf-life for multitude of reasons (simple attrition, chance of critical release failure increasing with time, market changes), so long life cycle is improbable. I do think, that currently five years is around the peak of shelf life and then decline speeds up, but that is mostly based on feeling and circumstantial evidence.

Person_Man
2014-07-31, 07:25 AM
3.5 came out 3ish years after 3.0, and Essentials came out 3ish years after 4E. So I'm guessing that in 3ish years they'll release 5.5 or some similar iteration, like a revised Basic or Advanced version of 5E. Then a year or two after that they'll start working on 6E, which will be released in 2020 or 2021 at the latest.

We should also remember that in the days of TSR, there were a bunch of different boxed editions and books for different campaign worlds that sometimes had heavily modified the rules, and were often incompatible with each other. So its not like Hasbro is really departing that radically from the business model of any other successful game company. If there's a demand for new products, they will sell them.

akaddk
2014-07-31, 07:30 AM
Let's do some D&D Math.

PHB = ~$50

MM = ~$50

DMG = ~$50

Various unnecessary dice + miniatures + accessories = ~$50-$1,000.

All in all, roughly $200 to $1,200 spent for a hobby that gives you something to argue, bitch, complain and laugh over for seven years with 4-6 friends.

Eh, I'm ok with that.

Tholomyes
2014-07-31, 07:43 AM
I'm not so sure I agree with the prospect of a 5.5e. Both Essentials and 3.5 made since in the context of the environment at the time. 5e's spent so long in public playtest that I don't think some of the things that lead to essentials and 3.5 will be there in that great of quantity. Had Essentials been a rousing success in drawing in large sales numbers, I might agree that we'd see a 5.5e, but to my understanding, it wasn't, at least not to hasbro's expectation. 3.5 was fairly successful, but I don't think that it'd do as well in today's market. In the early 2000s, revisions via errata or Dev's FAQs wasn't particularly viable, so releasing a revised edition of the Core rules was more doable.

The main thing I see in favor of a 5.5 is the fact that there may be aspects they had to cut to meet the release schedule, but I think that's far more likely to show up in a PHB 2 or other supplement.

Theodoxus
2014-07-31, 08:16 AM
I suspect ,that these claims are mostly marketing talk. You as customer are more likely to invest yourself into the product, if you know it will last long, so now they claim, that they will prolong the cycle to get more people, also 4 ed was kinda short.

the simple truth is that even RPGs have shelf-life for multitude of reasons (simple attrition, chance of critical release failure increasing with time, market changes), so long life cycle is improbable. I do think, that currently five years is around the peak of shelf life and then decline speeds up, but that is mostly based on feeling and circumstantial evidence.

Paizo kinda turns that on it's head - possibly. It's at the 5 year mark now, though goes back another year of open development. And since it's a support system for 3.5, one could reasonably argue that it's keeping that addition alive and well - at least as the chassis.

If 5th Ed doesn't have an OGL type support for 3rd party development, and remains closed like 4th Ed, then yes, I can see a shorter life cycle. One company, even if they changed their development model to include a much larger testing audience, doesn't have the resources to drive competitive innovation through a singular product line. Opening up 'competition' to 3rd parties keeps the product viable longer.

On the other hand, if 5th Ed remains closed, then Paizo, specifically, won't feel the need to adopt it into its wheelhouse, much as they ignored 4th Ed, and Pathfinder will continue to be a dominant player on the market. I know for my next campaign, if my players don't adopt 5th Ed (we're doing the starter set this weekend, so we'll see how well we like it in play, not just theory), I'm going to steal some concepts from 5th that I like and incorporate them. Being based on the d20 chassis allows for some pretty slick backwards compatibility.

1337 b4k4
2014-07-31, 08:22 AM
I suspect ,that these claims are mostly marketing talk. You as customer are more likely to invest yourself into the product, if you know it will last long, so now they claim, that they will prolong the cycle to get more people, also 4 ed was kinda short.

the simple truth is that even RPGs have shelf-life for multitude of reasons (simple attrition, chance of critical release failure increasing with time, market changes), so long life cycle is improbable. I do think, that currently five years is around the peak of shelf life and then decline speeds up, but that is mostly based on feeling and circumstantial evidence.

On the flip side of this, the RPG industry (like the video games industry in many ways) is moving free to play. There's too many free rules systems out there (including now D&D itself, for real not an SRD) for the "sell a complete new system every few years" business model to work for much longer. The future is recurring subscription type revenue. They tried for that with 4e and DDI, and they'll be trying again with 5e as well. In such a world, having a long and stable base product for people to latch onto and then buy add ons for is going to be more profitable than destroying your base every few years. In that world, we're more likely to see something like the days of Basic D&D, where we iterate through mostly compatible but different reprints of the rules, under the same name (B/X, BECMI and the Rules Cyclopedia are technically all Basic D&D, but there are differences between each. Those differences are much smaller though that the differences between 1e, 2e, 3e, 4e and 5e).

That isn't to say we'll never see a new "full" edition of D&D. One of the downsides to a subscription revenue model is that eventually your back catalog is so big, you drive away customers who simply feel like they could never get in and your employees have trouble keeping up with cannon. This is one of the reasons why super hero comics and worlds tend to reboot every so often, they allow the comic writers and the audience to start fresh again.

Issabella
2014-07-31, 08:24 AM
What do you think ..7 years?

Depends on sales and community reaction.

Tengu_temp
2014-07-31, 12:07 PM
Honestly? I don't give 5e more than 2-3 years. 4e was an arguably failed experiment, Essentials was a definitely failed experiment, and I see no reason for why 5e won't be a failed experiment as well.


Let's do some D&D Math.

PHB = ~$50

MM = ~$50

DMG = ~$50

Various unnecessary dice + miniatures + accessories = ~$50-$1,000.

All in all, roughly $200 to $1,200 spent for a hobby that gives you something to argue, bitch, complain and laugh over for seven years with 4-6 friends.

Eh, I'm ok with that.

That's a rather strange approach. Do you stop playing games using a specific system when its new edition comes out? If you like an RPG system, you can keep running games that use it forever. On the other hand, if a system sucks, you'll get tired of it long before expansions stop coming out for it.

Also I'd like to point out that DND is ridiculously expensive by RPG standards, especially in comparison to games that use pdfs. Most games only require one book to play, and that book usually has as much content as PHB+DMG+one third of a MM, if not more.

SpawnOfMorbo
2014-07-31, 12:36 PM
That's a rather strange approach. Do you stop playing games using a specific system when its new edition comes out? If you like an RPG system, you can keep running games that use it forever. On the other hand, if a system sucks, you'll get tired of it long before expansions stop coming out for it.

Also I'd like to point out that DND is ridiculously expensive by RPG standards, especially in comparison to games that use pdfs. Most games only require one book to play, and that book usually has as much content as PHB+DMG+one third of a MM, if not more.

Honestly, I think people think that each edition of D&D is more like a console than the games for the console. Once he new one comes out, why play the old one?

Which is stupid but whatever.

wolfstone
2014-07-31, 01:30 PM
Well they stated in an interview that they plan on a slower release schedule for books so they can avoid bloat and allow people to finish the stuff they sold before they send out another.

With only 1 session every three months or so on average, that's not happening with my play group. :(

zorb25
2014-07-31, 01:32 PM
snip longish post
I agree with this sentiment, but I do not think we are at the point where this type of service can be truly successful and transform the hobby. What you imho absolutely need is to offer good virtual table and Gm tools(which does have meatspace output- you can print creations) integrated with your database, this is needed for control and keeping the things straight and imo gives a definitive advantage over books If you set up your model right, you will swim in money.

p.s Why is there no oficial virtual table anyway?

Tvtyrant
2014-07-31, 01:52 PM
Basically I try different additions when I like their goals. I love E6 so I am inclined towards bounded accuracy, and I liked 4Es rituals but they were basically abandoned so I need to update them myself. What I mean is that WotC is often innovative and their editions incorporate useful elements, so I think a 7 year cycle is fair. I do find the abandonment of good ideas irritating (Tome of magic and rituals in 5E)

1337 b4k4
2014-07-31, 02:55 PM
p.s Why is there no oficial virtual table anyway?

Frankly these days, I'd say it would be a waste of money for WotC. In order for the official VTT to compete with what's already out there (Roll20, Fantasy Grounds etc) it would need to do all of the following for about the current cost of their competitors or DDI:

Provide complete rules integration and functions that are rules specific.
Provide complete online access to the rules, either by way of opening all the rules or by allowing purchasers to register their purchases.
Provide voice and video chat
Provide high quality art work for tokens
Provide high quality maps
Provide integrated and interactive DMing tools (including full module support)
Provide free or cheap (like $1-$2 cheap) player seats for the VTT.

The reason they need to do this is because any "official" VTT would be locked exclusively to D&D and that's a hard sell to players and DMs alike if the VTT is going to require them to do the work they're already doing elsewhere.

Sartharina
2014-07-31, 03:11 PM
And, they'd need to regulate it, to keep people like me from abusing it and giving it a bad reputation.

1eGuy
2014-07-31, 03:25 PM
people just need to realize that it doesn't make any sense to have a single edition for 15 or 20 years anymore.Well, we're still playing the first edition. A good game is still a good game even if its 5000 years old. And a roleplaying game really shouldn't need new editions of the core rules unless there's something very wrong with them; the real play and variety is in the stuff the DM brings.

Tholomyes
2014-07-31, 04:00 PM
Well they stated in an interview that they plan on a slower release schedule for books so they can avoid bloat and allow people to finish the stuff they sold before they send out another.I missed this earlier, but I have to hope that this is not in fact the case. Otherwise it might take a couple years for 5e to get to the point where I can actually consider playing it.

Also, from a business perspective it doesn't make a lot of sense, unless Hasbro really has very little faith in 5e. With the amount of time they put into 5e, from a marketing perspective (i.e. the public playtest), they really don't have a good avenue not to release stuff for it. Adventure modules and stuff will sell somewhat, but I can't see it being a huge money maker. The issue with them is they rely on having a DM who likes to run (or at least have) pregen stuff, which, in my experience, isn't terribly common. Paizo is a bit of an outlier, but that's due to the consistent quality of their Modules and Adventure Paths. D&D doesn't have that consistancy, and a lot of their adventure modules during 4e's life were pretty bad.

Supplements, however, will be attractive to a broader selection of players (5-7 players per group, rather than possibly 1-2; and even if not everyone gets their own copy, I'm guessing that's still 3-4 at the table who will want to buy their own). Bloat may be a fear, but with subclasses, I can't see it being as big an issue as with classes, and feats are larger that you don't need as many to get the job done, as you did in previous editions.

I don't see, unless Hasbro's decision is to cut the budget down massively, and hope that sales for core books and pregen adventures is enough to make enough of a profit, that they could get by with a super slow release schedule. And this is saying nothing about people, like myself, who won't even buy into the system until our reprehension about the quantity and quality of customization options and options for greater class complexity has been sated.

zorb25
2014-07-31, 04:06 PM
Frankly these days, I'd say it would be a waste of money for WotC. In order for the official VTT to compete with what's already out there (Roll20, Fantasy Grounds etc) it would need to do all of the following for about the current cost of their competitors or DDI:

Provide complete rules integration and functions that are rules specific.
Provide complete online access to the rules, either by way of opening all the rules or by allowing purchasers to register their purchases.
Provide voice and video chat
Provide high quality art work for tokens
Provide high quality maps
Provide integrated and interactive DMing tools (including full module support)
Provide free or cheap (like $1-$2 cheap) player seats for the VTT.

The reason they need to do this is because any "official" VTT would be locked exclusively to D&D and that's a hard sell to players and DMs alike if the VTT is going to require them to do the work they're already doing elsewhere.
True, but I do not think it would be waste of money. I do sincerely believe that these features(especially the bolded ones) would push them above their competitors and allowed them to ask for more money, or frankly use MOBA model of Core being free or behind one time pay wall and sell modules(settings, classes, rules, item compilation, map compilations and so on ) as mixture of free and very cheap one buys with some bonuses being marketing free for limited periods of time, with subscription being used to get more bonus info(exclusive insiders, bonus buying power and so on). The original investment would not be small ,but it would pay for itself and possibly attracted more people for humans are lazy beings by nature.

1337 b4k4
2014-07-31, 04:32 PM
True, but I do not think it would be waste of money. I do sincerely believe that these features(especially the bolded ones) would push them above their competitors and allowed them to ask for more money, or frankly use MOBA model of Core being free or behind one time pay wall and sell modules(settings, classes, rules, item compilation, map compilations and so on ) as mixture of free and very cheap one buys with some bonuses being marketing free for limited periods of time, with subscription being used to get more bonus info(exclusive insiders, bonus buying power and so on). The original investment would not be small ,but it would pay for itself and possibly attracted more people for humans are lazy beings by nature.

They might be able to ask for more money, but unless those features are very very strong, they still need to deal with the fact that they're asking for more money to lock the rpg players into the VTT. Remember this is more than the old DDI character builder, they need to compete with an already existing, already establish and (in the case of some) already pretty well integrated product that also supports ANY system the group chooses to play. Don't get me wrong, it's possible, but I think it would be a better use of WotC's money to produce material and official supplements for existing VTTs. Sell the art and tokens packs, and for VTTs with rules level support, make official rules modules. This strategy would also have the benefit of giving WotC the appearance of being willing to work with and support the community as a whole.

akaddk
2014-07-31, 04:46 PM
That's a rather strange approach. Do you stop playing games using a specific system when its new edition comes out? If you like an RPG system, you can keep running games that use it forever. On the other hand, if a system sucks, you'll get tired of it long before expansions stop coming out for it.

Also I'd like to point out that DND is ridiculously expensive by RPG standards, especially in comparison to games that use pdfs. Most games only require one book to play, and that book usually has as much content as PHB+DMG+one third of a MM, if not more.

Oh for ****'s sake, I swear to Dog that you people look to create arguments that don't exist solely so that you have something to argue about on a forum.

I was posting this as a counter to all the negative nancies talking about how long the edition will last and here you come along and squirrel out some negative from what I was saying. It's like a neverending circle-jerk of negative with forum nerds.

zorb25
2014-07-31, 04:48 PM
They might be able to ask for more money, but unless those features are very very strong, they still need to deal with the fact that they're asking for more money to lock the rpg players into the VTT. Remember this is more than the old DDI character builder, they need to compete with an already existing, already establish and (in the case of some) already pretty well integrated product that also supports ANY system the group chooses to play. Don't get me wrong, it's possible, but I think it would be a better use of WotC's money to produce material and official supplements for existing VTTs. Sell the art and tokens packs, and for VTTs with rules level support, make official rules modules. This strategy would also have the benefit of giving WotC the appearance of being willing to work with and support the community as a whole.

That is impossible. You will never produce supplements for third party, that is basic corporate logic and Hasbro is corporation. What you ask goes against everything even more, than the free to play model. Third party can utilize these things, for they skirt grey area hard and going against them is PR suicide and probable to fail from legal standpoint, but to produce things directly for them is not only unthinkable, but also unprofitable.

p.s. Of course beginning of my idea is to buy one of them and get them to be the "core" of the team.

Lokiare
2014-07-31, 04:50 PM
Oh for ****'s sake, I swear to Dog that you people look to create arguments that don't exist solely so that you have something to argue about on a forum.

I was posting this as a counter to all the negative nancies talking about how long the edition will last and here you come along and squirrel out some negative from what I was saying. It's like a neverending circle-jerk of negative with forum nerds.

I know this is hard to understand, but sometimes things are just negative. In reality, many things are negative and endless unjustified hope is actually harmful.

"I hope the fire will go out on its own."
"I hope you won't get pregnant."
"I hope the economy won't collapse when the dollar isn't the world reserve currency anymore."

Personally instead of unreasonably hoping about things, I do something about it.

"I'm going to go make sure that fire gets put out."
"I'm going to use protection."
"I'm going to diversify into precious metals and other currencies."

Much more effective in the long term.

Knaight
2014-07-31, 04:53 PM
Well, we're still playing the first edition. A good game is still a good game even if its 5000 years old. And a roleplaying game really shouldn't need new editions of the core rules unless there's something very wrong with them; the real play and variety is in the stuff the DM brings.

It doesn't really take something very wrong with them - people are constantly coming up with new ideas, refinements, etc, and publishing a new edition every so often reflects that. D&D's a bit of an edge case, as from 3rd edition onward the editions have basically been different games, but take something like GURPS - it's recognizably the same game in 1e and 4e, but they've smoothed out a lot of wrinkles, made some changes (e.g. changing the tech level rules to reflect decades of technological development, some stuff regarding changes in health based mechanics versus strength based mechanics to accommodate things of extreme sizes, some fairly dramatic changes of vehicle rules which actually were pretty bad, etc.), and released new editions for it. I really have no issue with this.

Granted, I also mostly play Fudge, which only has one edition and came out in 1995, but it's also something designed for heavy house ruling and home brewing beyond even early D&D, and I've gone through more than a few sets of added/changed mechanics.

Sartharina
2014-07-31, 05:09 PM
Well, we're still playing the first edition. A good game is still a good game even if its 5000 years old. And a roleplaying game really shouldn't need new editions of the core rules unless there's something very wrong with them; the real play and variety is in the stuff the DM brings.Fortunately, every game does have flaws in the system, though some people's flaws are other people's features. I like iteration.

I suspect 5e will last about 3-4 years before they give it a large half-edition update. It'll probably have a shelf-life of 10 years, and a Grognard life of ~40+ years.

I'm afraid for the future of 4e, though, due to the subscription model it uses (Which, admittedly, isn't mandatory). I really should backup all my digital 4e stuff somewhere.

Raimun
2014-07-31, 05:19 PM
Not very long, I'm afraid.

Kurald Galain
2014-07-31, 05:28 PM
I say three years. After three years, they will come up with something new, which they may decide to call 5.5, or D&D Nexter, or D&D Indispensables, or just 6E outright because they want an edition that plays on a hex grid.

akaddk
2014-07-31, 05:36 PM
Personally instead of unreasonably hoping about things, I do something about it.

OMFG.

My original post was trying to do something about it.

I give up. You people deserve each other.

Envyus
2014-07-31, 05:41 PM
I missed this earlier, but I have to hope that this is not in fact the case. Otherwise it might take a couple years for 5e to get to the point where I can actually consider playing it.

Also, from a business perspective it doesn't make a lot of sense, unless Hasbro really has very little faith in 5e. With the amount of time they put into 5e, from a marketing perspective (i.e. the public playtest), they really don't have a good avenue not to release stuff for it. Adventure modules and stuff will sell somewhat, but I can't see it being a huge money maker. The issue with them is they rely on having a DM who likes to run (or at least have) pregen stuff, which, in my experience, isn't terribly common. Paizo is a bit of an outlier, but that's due to the consistent quality of their Modules and Adventure Paths. D&D doesn't have that consistancy, and a lot of their adventure modules during 4e's life were pretty bad.

Supplements, however, will be attractive to a broader selection of players (5-7 players per group, rather than possibly 1-2; and even if not everyone gets their own copy, I'm guessing that's still 3-4 at the table who will want to buy their own). Bloat may be a fear, but with subclasses, I can't see it being as big an issue as with classes, and feats are larger that you don't need as many to get the job done, as you did in previous editions.

I don't see, unless Hasbro's decision is to cut the budget down massively, and hope that sales for core books and pregen adventures is enough to make enough of a profit, that they could get by with a super slow release schedule. And this is saying nothing about people, like myself, who won't even buy into the system until our reprehension about the quantity and quality of customization options and options for greater class complexity has been sated.

Here I will just let the interview speak for me.


By sharing the rules, weíre making it easier than ever for people to get into D&D. For way too long the rules have been a deterrent. So, itís really about focusing on whatís important Ė campaigns and adventures Ė and selling that, while removing barriers to entry.

As far as worrying about sales goes, weíre definitely approaching the business in a different way. In the past, the way to make the business work was to release more and more RPG books. In reviewing sales records, itís pretty clear that after a few expansions people simply stop buying and many even stop playing. Could you imagine trying to keep up with a boardgame if a new expansion or three came out for it every month?

Instead of flooding the market with an endless tide of RPG books, weíre moving to diversify the business. We have two active MMOs, board games, miniatures, t-shirts, novels, and even more stuff weíre working on.

In hindsight, itís actually a fairly obvious move. Letís say you buy the three core rulebooks and then the two volumes of the Tyranny of Dragons campaign. That gives you everything you need for the next 6 to 12 months of gaming. Do I really have much of a chance to sell you more RPG stuff during that time? Why fight that battle?

Instead, what weíre doing is looking at all the time you have when you canít play the RPG and looking to fill that with more entertainment. In that world, someone who downloads the Basic Rules and likes D&D is a customer. Maybe not for tabletop RPG stuff, but they might want to buy a novel, or try out our new video game.



There are definitely some big, exciting surprises coming up. There are easily six things that come instantly to mind that I want to talk about, but I donít think I can tease anything yet. I can talk about the philosophy behind our approach to the future.

I will completely admit my jealousy for games like Magic: the Gathering or Mass Effect, where you have players on the edges of their seats waiting for the next release. I think in the past D&D relied way too much on a volume strategy, where we did so much stuff that it was hard for people to get excited about any one thing. Book after book came out each month, far faster than anyone could absorb it all.

Our philosophy now is to make everything count. If we release a new super adventure, like Tyranny of Dragons, or a new rules expansion, we want it to be an event. When you add stuff to an RPG, youíre asking all the DMs out there to evaluate their campaigns, learn new options, and then try to implement them. You have to be very careful in how you add things to the game, and very deliberate in making those additions exciting and compelling.

My dream would be a world where new expansions are real events, where people are seeing exciting new ideas and concepts for the game. Even better, as we expand into digital gaming we can bring D&D to life through video games in ways that people have never dreamed. Thatís really exciting to me.

Tholomyes
2014-07-31, 05:55 PM
Here I will just let the interview speak for me.When were those interviews? Were they recent? Because I can't see that as a good business strategy, and it probably will be the thing that keeps me from spending a cent on this edition. And I think there are enough people who are in the same camp, that come a couple years from not, either 5e or Mearls won't be around.

Jeraa
2014-07-31, 05:56 PM
D&D 5e will last just as long as all other editions: Too Long from some people, Not Long Enough for others.

Personally, I think that it won't last more than 3-4 years before WotC bring out something else, even if it is just 5.5e or 5e Essentials. Not that I care. Once I have the 3 core rulebooks (PHB, MM, DMG), I don't care what happens to 5e. I rarely use non-core material, and when I do it is usually homebrew. I don't need my D&D to still be in-print to enjoy it.

rlc
2014-07-31, 06:25 PM
Well, we're still playing the first edition. A good game is still a good game even if its 5000 years old. And a roleplaying game really shouldn't need new editions of the core rules unless there's something very wrong with them; the real play and variety is in the stuff the DM brings.

of course a good game is still a good game no matter how old it is (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_games#Ancient_board_games), but i wasn't arguing against that.
while i disagree that updating the core rules isn't a good reason for a new edition (for the same reason that comic book universes reset, as b4k4 mentioned earlier, among others), it's also good for just keeping the game on people's radar.

da_chicken
2014-07-31, 06:31 PM
When were those interviews? Were they recent? Because I can't see that as a good business strategy, and it probably will be the thing that keeps me from spending a cent on this edition. And I think there are enough people who are in the same camp, that come a couple years from not, either 5e or Mearls won't be around.

I think that was either The Escapist or Forbes (or some other random website) interviews, I think. Recent. Since May.

I don't think it's a bad strategy. He's right. People don't buy splat. Everybody buys the PHB. Many people buy the MM. Many buy the DMG. A few buy a splat book or two, usually for their favorite class or one to cover several of their favorite classes. IMX, there's only 1 or 2 guys who buy a ton of splat in a group. In my group, there's one guy who collects the books. He has a complete (or nearly complete) set of all the books TSR and WotC has released through 2010.

The thing that really sells books, though, is the thing that draws more people to the game. That pretty much means adventure paths. Make the game easy to play, and give people a ton of adventures to run. My group got by for years on PHB + MM + DMG + whatever was in Dungeon.

Envyus
2014-07-31, 06:42 PM
When were those interviews? Were they recent? Because I can't see that as a good business strategy, and it probably will be the thing that keeps me from spending a cent on this edition. And I think there are enough people who are in the same camp, that come a couple years from not, either 5e or Mearls won't be around.

July 23 http://suvudu.com/2014/07/interview-with-dd-lead-designer-mike-mearls-gamers-wanted-5e-to-be-fast-flexible-and-easy-to-play.html

Tholomyes
2014-07-31, 06:43 PM
I think that was either The Escapist or Forbes (or some other random website) interviews, I think. Recent. Since May.

I don't think it's a bad strategy. He's right. People don't buy splat. Everybody buys the PHB. Many people buy the MM. Many buy the DMG. A few buy a splat book or two, usually for their favorite class or one to cover several of their favorite classes. IMX, there's only 1 or 2 guys who buy a ton of splat in a group. In my group, there's one guy who collects the books. He has a complete (or nearly complete) set of all the books TSR and WotC has released through 2010.

The thing that really sells books, though, is the thing that draws more people to the game. That pretty much means adventure paths. Make the game easy to play, and give people a ton of adventures to run. My group got by for years on PHB + MM + DMG + whatever was in Dungeon.See, that's far from my experience. Pretty much everyone in my group at least eventually gets the basic supplements (i.e. PHB 2/Advanced Players' Guides, as well as the Complete X [for 3.5], Ultimate Y [for PF] and Z Power [for 4e]) and usually the other stuff someone gets, though maybe only one or two people.

As for Adventure paths or modules, I don't know many people who pick them up, and at most people pick up Map folios, if they're released, because having maps is good, but having the actual adventure paths or modules isn't all that useful, if you don't actually run them.

Sartharina
2014-07-31, 07:09 PM
When were those interviews? Were they recent? Because I can't see that as a good business strategy, and it probably will be the thing that keeps me from spending a cent on this edition. And I think there are enough people who are in the same camp, that come a couple years from not, either 5e or Mearls won't be around.

Actually, I see merchandising and diversifying as a great way to lengthen the life of the product, and make it more appealing. I can buy my D&D Hats, shirts, and when I'm not playing with others, I'll be able to play one of the video games. Merchandising advertises the game, allows players to show off their love of the game, and brings in a constant stream of revenue without needing to bloat the game they're selling the way splats do.

Meanwhile, when I want to play D&D, or get others involved, I don't have to dump a thousand sourcebooks on them. Meanwhile, if I want to run 4e, I have to dump... PHB 1,2,&3, on them, Martial Power 1&2, Divine Power, Psionic Power, Arcane Power, Primal Power, Adventurer's Vault, and Adventurer's Vault 2 on them... and that's not getting into the Essentials line, or dragon magazine stuff (Which is actually respectable in 4e, as opposed to the horrific 3e homebrew stuff in Dragon Mag). And I need to have DMG, DMG 2, Monster Vault, and Monster Manual 3.

If I want to play 3e with a group, I need to dump Players' Handbook 1, Player's Handbook 2, Complete Adventurer, Complete Warrior, Complete Arcane, Complete Divine, Complete Mage, Complete Champion, Complete Scoundrel, Races of the Wild, Races of Stone, Races of Destiny, Races of the Dragon, Expanded Psionics Handbook, Tome of Magic, Tome of Battle, Book of Exalted Deeds, Book of Vile Darkness, Book of Erotic Fantasy, Chainmail Bikini, Magic Item Compendium, and Spell Compendium. And I need to own the DMG, DMG 2, Monster Manual, and Monster Manual 3.

Tholomyes
2014-07-31, 07:28 PM
Actually, I see merchandising and diversifying as a great way to lengthen the life of the product, and make it more appealing. I can buy my D&D Hats, shirts, and when I'm not playing with others, I'll be able to play one of the video games. Merchandising advertises the game, allows players to show off their love of the game, and brings in a constant stream of revenue without needing to bloat the game they're selling the way splats do.

Meanwhile, when I want to play D&D, or get others involved, I don't have to dump a thousand sourcebooks on them. Meanwhile, if I want to run 4e, I have to dump... PHB 1,2,&3, on them, Martial Power 1&2, Divine Power, Psionic Power, Arcane Power, Primal Power, Adventurer's Vault, and Adventurer's Vault 2 on them... and that's not getting into the Essentials line, or dragon magazine stuff (Which is actually respectable in 4e, as opposed to the horrific 3e homebrew stuff in Dragon Mag). And I need to have DMG, DMG 2, Monster Vault, and Monster Manual 3.

If I want to play 3e with a group, I need to dump Players' Handbook 1, Player's Handbook 2, Complete Adventurer, Complete Warrior, Complete Arcane, Complete Divine, Complete Mage, Complete Champion, Complete Scoundrel, Races of the Wild, Races of Stone, Races of Destiny, Races of the Dragon, Expanded Psionics Handbook, Tome of Magic, Tome of Battle, Book of Exalted Deeds, Book of Vile Darkness, Book of Erotic Fantasy, Chainmail Bikini, Magic Item Compendium, and Spell Compendium. And I need to own the DMG, DMG 2, Monster Manual, and Monster Manual 3.Except I only care about the merchandise if I actually care about the product being merchandised. For me to care, I want to see more than just what the PHB will supposedly contain. That means them putting out more supplements. Even just an Advanced Player's Guide/PHB 2, plus 3-4 "Complete X" books could potentially be enough, if the material in there is of sufficient quality, though I wouldn't mind a Tome of Battle-esque supplement.

archaeo
2014-08-01, 02:10 AM
Except I only care about the merchandise if I actually care about the product being merchandised. For me to care, I want to see more than just what the PHB will supposedly contain. That means them putting out more supplements. Even just an Advanced Player's Guide/PHB 2, plus 3-4 "Complete X" books could potentially be enough, if the material in there is of sufficient quality, though I wouldn't mind a Tome of Battle-esque supplement.

But Mearls didn't say "no splat." Mearls said they want every publication to be an event. Not that I think they'll ever manage to accomplish that, but it does seem to suggest that they'll release supplements when they think they can make a splash with them, not to keep up some ridiculous rate of publication.

Plus, like I've said before, I bet a lot of that supplement stuff will get folded into Morningstar/an online storefront for individual rules modules. They teased something that sounded like it could easily be a homebrew store. Now, if you find yourself dissatisfied by 5e, you don't have to do all the house ruling yourself; you log on to Wizards.com, browse the highest-rated supplements for whatever you want, and figure out what you'd like to buy.

But we'll see. Mearls isn't a dummy; he grew up writing splat and homebrew and adventures. WotC knows players will want more crunch than what they can find in the core rules. They'll deliver. They just might wrap it up in "event" nonsense. So it goes.

Tholomyes
2014-08-01, 04:06 AM
But Mearls didn't say "no splat." Mearls said they want every publication to be an event. Not that I think they'll ever manage to accomplish that, but it does seem to suggest that they'll release supplements when they think they can make a splash with them, not to keep up some ridiculous rate of publication.If this is the intent, I guess I can agree with that, but It's not really reading that way to me. It's the quote "So, itís really about focusing on whatís important Ė campaigns and adventures" that's worrying me. I don't care about prewritten campaigns and adventures, more than I can scavenge maps from them (and even then, only if I can get them cheap). What I care about is having a system with enough depth and enough options, and I don't feel 5e can deliver at the moment.


Plus, like I've said before, I bet a lot of that supplement stuff will get folded into Morningstar/an online storefront for individual rules modules. They teased something that sounded like it could easily be a homebrew store. Now, if you find yourself dissatisfied by 5e, you don't have to do all the house ruling yourself; you log on to Wizards.com, browse the highest-rated supplements for whatever you want, and figure out what you'd like to buy. Perhaps, but I don't want DLC and microtransactions in my RPG, nor do I want to have to deal with what happens if players bring something from morningstar that is super unbalanced. Do I have to look it up, and decide on the spot? Or from the player's seat, why should I pay for homebrew if my DM might just decide not to allow it anyway. At least with first party material, I generally know I'll probably get use from it. I don't see it working out well, meaning I'm not going to put my wallet on the line for it. I'm not going to chance it, knowing that if it works out badly, not only have I wasted money, but I voted with my wallet, and I voted wrong.

archaeo
2014-08-01, 05:02 AM
If this is the intent, I guess I can agree with that, but It's not really reading that way to me. It's the quote "So, itís really about focusing on whatís important Ė campaigns and adventures" that's worrying me. I don't care about prewritten campaigns and adventures, more than I can scavenge maps from them (and even then, only if I can get them cheap). What I care about is having a system with enough depth and enough options, and I don't feel 5e can deliver at the moment.

Welp! If I was selling 5e, I'd tell you that the DMG will likely have lots of tips on creating your own (ideally balanced) homebrew. But I'm not selling 5e, so instead I can cheerfully say that it sounds like you'll be better off waiting to see what happens instead of jumping in if you're unimpressed.


Perhaps, but I don't want DLC and microtransactions in my RPG, nor do I want to have to deal with what happens if players bring something from morningstar that is super unbalanced. Do I have to look it up, and decide on the spot? Or from the player's seat, why should I pay for homebrew if my DM might just decide not to allow it anyway. At least with first party material, I generally know I'll probably get use from it. I don't see it working out well, meaning I'm not going to put my wallet on the line for it. I'm not going to chance it, knowing that if it works out badly, not only have I wasted money, but I voted with my wallet, and I voted wrong.

I mean, how is that any different from previous splat? Somebody still had to buy that book/magazine/whatever to see what was in it. And who says that Morningstar isn't the mechanism through which WotC will be providing first-party rules? You say "DLC and microtransactions," I see "I can buy only the class/subclass/feat set/rules mod I want, instead of this whole book of rules I don't really need."

Admittedly, the devil's in the details, but at $0.99 for a class or $4.99 for a big module, with user reviews ("5 Stars! Balanced options and cool effects! Would play again!") and good previews? I don't think that'd be too bad. And if you don't like buying stuff a la carte, well, WotC also offers this beautiful hardback that collects all those classes and modules, with lavish illustrations and etc., and it's cheaper than buying all the rules separately.

Honestly, iTunes for D&D sounds like a pretty good deal to me. It's all just speculation, though, so you know. Let's not get too into arguing about things that they haven't even announced yet. :smallcool:

TheOOB
2014-08-04, 04:14 AM
Regardless of how long the system "lasts" you can still play it if you like it.

My group still plays 7th Sea, which is 15 years old(Pinning when the series stopped is difficult, sometime around 2002 or 2004).

Kurald Galain
2014-08-04, 10:46 AM
My group still plays 7th Sea, which is 15 years old(Pinning when the series stopped is difficult, sometime around 2002 or 2004).

The series stopped at the exact date when its last book was released; that's the only definition that makes sense.

1337 b4k4
2014-08-04, 10:59 AM
That is impossible. You will never produce supplements for third party, that is basic corporate logic and Hasbro is corporation. What you ask goes against everything even more, than the free to play model. Third party can utilize these things, for they skirt grey area hard and going against them is PR suicide and probable to fail from legal standpoint, but to produce things directly for them is not only unthinkable, but also unprofitable.

You do if they're not a competitor, but a synergistic entity. In this case, unless WotC produces their own VTT, the current VTT companies are synergistic. Their success can be leveraged by WotC, by having official support for the D&D system in the VTT software. And even when you have competitors, there's logic in selling your product to (or through) them as well. Apple has their own retail stores, they still sell through Best Buy and Walmart. ASUS makes their own computers, but still sells accessories and components for all computers. WotC (and Hasbro) is in the business of selling D&D, in all of it's forms, not running a VTT company. If they think they can sell D&D via 3rd party VTTs, they will (or at least should) sell D&D via 3rd party VTTs.

Kerrin
2014-08-04, 12:24 PM
As for Adventure paths or modules, I don't know many people who pick them up
For me, I do need a game system to have a goodly number of quality pre-made adventures available because I do not have the time these days to create them myself.

I completely understand folks who will not make use of them because many moons ago I used to create all of my own from scratch.

Two completely different sub-customer-bases. Darned if they do, darned if they don't.

TheOOB
2014-08-04, 12:27 PM
The series stopped at the exact date when its last book was released; that's the only definition that makes sense.

With 7th Sea that is a hard designation to make, because it depends on what you consider to be the "last book" regardless, the fact is the game is still good and playable even though it hasn't been supported in over a decade.

Also all this talk on how long a game "lasts". Yes AD&D and 2nd lasted a long time, but where there more books in that time then 3e or 4e had?

Kurald Galain
2014-08-04, 02:58 PM
Also all this talk on how long a game "lasts". Yes AD&D and 2nd lasted a long time, but where there more books in that time then 3e or 4e had?

...I think so, because 2E also had a large amount of campaign settings that produced their own splatbooks, not to mention things like the multi-part Spell Compendium and the Magic Item Compendium. After all, part of TSR's problem was that it was printing too many niche books.

If the lists on Wikipedia are correct, then 1E (including advanced) had 76 books, 2E had 94 books, 3E (including 3.5) had 73 books, and 4E (including 4.4) had 55 books. So 1E and 3E are more-or-less the same size, and 2E is substantially bigger.

EccentricCircle
2014-08-06, 11:16 AM
If the lists on Wikipedia are correct, then 1E (including advanced) had 76 books, 2E had 94 books, 3E (including 3.5) had 73 books, and 4E (including 4.4) had 55 books. So 1E and 3E are more-or-less the same size, and 2E is substantially bigger.

I'd say that the estimates for 3e and 4e are on the low side, there are well over a hundred 3e books if you include the FR and Eberron ones, including adventures it will be even higher.
There's a good list here:
http://www.enworld.org/forum/showwiki.php?title=Original-D-and-D-Collectors-Guide
which suggests that 2e has the most books, but that they are mostly setting specific, while 1e actually doesn't have that many

Kurald Galain
2014-08-06, 12:37 PM
I'd say that the estimates for 3e and 4e are on the low side

I haven't counted 3E yet, but if I count the 4E books from the site you link, I end up with 56 which is pretty much what Wikipedia says too. I'm not counting adventures, and I firmly believe that fan-written freely-downloadable adventures (e.g. the majority of the 4E list) shouldn't count.

Vowtz
2014-08-06, 02:15 PM
Nine hours.

Knaight
2014-08-06, 02:34 PM
If the lists on Wikipedia are correct, then 1E (including advanced) had 76 books, 2E had 94 books, 3E (including 3.5) had 73 books, and 4E (including 4.4) had 55 books. So 1E and 3E are more-or-less the same size, and 2E is substantially bigger.

I'm not sure about this. 2e obviously has more books, but there's a question of the length of the individual books. 1e has a way shorter PHB-MM-DMG set, for instance, and I suspect that holds true with splats as well.

Lokiare
2014-08-06, 03:39 PM
I'm not sure about this. 2e obviously has more books, but there's a question of the length of the individual books. 1e has a way shorter PHB-MM-DMG set, for instance, and I suspect that holds true with splats as well.

We should measure it by books per year, because IIRC 2E was the longest running edition so of course it has more books.

TheOOB
2014-08-06, 03:46 PM
I think the point is pretty well shown though that we as players are not really getting screwed out of content with the newer editions, we are getting more books per year than we ever did during 1e and 2e, and every edition, even the comparatively short lived 4e, were not in any way starved for content, thus there's no reason to expect that 5e will have any problems delivering a suitable amount of content.

Tholomyes
2014-08-06, 09:31 PM
I think the point is pretty well shown though that we as players are not really getting screwed out of content with the newer editions, we are getting more books per year than we ever did during 1e and 2e, and every edition, even the comparatively short lived 4e, were not in any way starved for content, thus there's no reason to expect that 5e will have any problems delivering a suitable amount of content.There is when Mearls has said before that he has no intention of releasing supplements, without making it "an event." Based on this, I think, unless Mearls decides to end this practice (or, if he doesn't, then his inevitable successor), then 5e will have an unacceptable lack of supplemental content.

CyberThread
2014-08-07, 12:54 PM
I think D&d is heading towards subscription based content, that will be published in books eventually in a controled manner. Also they weill be doing adventures instead of raw books.

da_chicken
2014-08-07, 03:46 PM
I think D&d is heading towards subscription based content, that will be published in books eventually in a controled manner. Also they weill be doing adventures instead of raw books.

Great. WotC will have reinvented the magazine. It's too bad they never thought of doing that before. :smalltongue:

EccentricCircle
2014-08-10, 10:36 AM
I haven't counted 3E yet, but if I count the 4E books from the site you link, I end up with 56 which is pretty much what Wikipedia says too. I'm not counting adventures, and I firmly believe that fan-written freely-downloadable adventures (e.g. the majority of the 4E list) shouldn't count.

Ah I was counting both adventures and setting specific books, (such as those published under the FR and Eberron Logos for 3.5) which are likely what isn't counted by wikipedia's lists.

Titanium Dragon
2014-08-10, 05:38 PM
I think the real issue is sales. PHB/DMG/MM sales vastly outweigh all else, and they tend to release the most sought-after stuff up front, with less sought-after stuff coming later on.

4th edition had the right idea in some respects, but they failed to carry through on it, unfortunately. The idea of coming out with a new PHB every year is actually quite brilliant, and is totally what they should have done, but they kind of petered out after the first two; the third one was not up to snuff. The other issue is coming up with good splatbooks; arcane/marital/divine/primal power are good ideas, but you're pretty much going to tap out after making one book of each type. Things like collections of magic items are cool, but you have to be smart about them; 4th edition's magic item books were pretty disappointing to me. Monster Manuals are alright - more monsters is always cool, after all, and Monster Manuals are fun to read - but DMGs are harder to make into a series, and honestly, you only need so many monsters.

I mean, how many books do you REALLY need, honestly?

Given how frequently they come out with new stuff, I'd guess 3-4 years really given their history, though I'd guess that they won't actually release another "real" edition for six years or so - they'll probably start development/announce the new system in 2018ish though.