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View Full Version : What's the overall reaction to D&D 4th edition



wodan46
2008-03-24, 08:21 PM
Partial Handbook: http://dnd4.com/phb
Other Bits of knowledge: http://dnd4.com/rumors
Sample Lvl 1 Characters
http://dnd4.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/03/corrin-level-1.pdf
http://dnd4.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/03/erais-level-1.pdf
http://dnd4.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/03/kathra-level-1.pdf
http://dnd4.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/03/riardon-level-1.pdf
http://dnd4.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/03/skamos-level-1.pdf
http://dnd4.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/03/tira-level-1.pdf

What are people's reaction to it?

It seems as though overall 4th edition has streamlined and balanced d&d.

The (at-will)-per-encounter-daily system ensures that the various classes still generally have the same quantity and quality of abilities, despite the vastly divergent nature of them. Healing surges reduces the need for Clerics. Level 1 characters don't die as much. Wizards start out tougher and Fighters end up deadlier. HP isn't as random.

On the streamlined end, leveling generates similar basic save/attack/skill bonuses for all classes while still giving plenty of options on the power side of things. Combat rules have been simplified, as have encounter rules, and a million other things.

Overall, D&D 4th edition can be summarized as follows
Less time: Numbercrunching and Munchkining
More time: Hacknslashing and Roleplaying

horseboy
2008-03-24, 08:27 PM
NNNNNOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!! These threads just died! (Runs and hides)

Zincorium
2008-03-24, 08:35 PM
I propose that anybody who posts in this makes one post, period, expressing the most basic version of their opinion, and tries not to start a flamewar.

This proposal is on a purely voluntary basis.


I myself am looking forward to it, mostly because the classes will be far more modular, i.e. a striker should be replaceable by any other striker without causing a problem.

Additionally, the reduction in quantity of magic items, the clarification of feats and the conversion of many feats into powers, the elimination of the vast majority of weird elven subspecies, and the way weapons will actually differ from one another.

Terraoblivion
2008-03-24, 08:42 PM
So far it has been overwhelmingly positive for me. The game appears simpler to play and to possess more focus on what you do in the game than on trawling through countless sourcebooks to collect a build that will actually fulfill its role.

The increased genre awareness and focus of both fluff and crunch that WotC appears to be going for also seems like a positive step towards finding a guiding principle for development of further material for the system. I also believe that the fluff for the generic setting is better than the pseudo-Greyhawk fluff of 3.x due to being more focused on genre and on usefulness and less on preserving a legacy of decades of material being pilled on top of each other and sedimenting into a sprawling mess that cannot be properly explained in the space available at launch.

holywhippet
2008-03-24, 10:18 PM
I'll need to actually play before I can make a judgement call. From what little I've seen I almost worry about it being a bit too generic with classes not having enough variety or having the same kind of stuff but with different names. More to the point, I'm worried that they are taking out a lot of the wierd and wonderful things that spell casters can do.

Other peoples impressions tell me I'm just not looking deep enough and that there's nothing to worry about.

Hadrian_Emrys
2008-03-24, 10:27 PM
This far, the system appears to be a lot more balanced and streamlined. Also, the x-ing races look to be a lot of fun to play. The downsides are that that game also appears to be a pen and paper version of an MMO and half-elves still exist along with the pile of nonsense that is their racial bonuses.

TheOOB
2008-03-24, 10:34 PM
I have the boxed set pre-ordered on Amazon already. I believe thats saying enough about my opinion on what I have seen.

I'm still a little wary of the skills system, because star wars was pulled off poorly, but I'm more then willing to give it a chance (and even if that sucks, it won't be such a big deal.)

DementedFellow
2008-03-24, 10:38 PM
I propose that anybody who posts in this makes one post, period, expressing the most basic version of their opinion, and tries not to start a flamewar.

This proposal is on a purely voluntary basis.


I myself am looking forward to it, mostly because the classes will be far more modular, i.e. a striker should be replaceable by any other striker without causing a problem.

Additionally, the reduction in quantity of magic items, the clarification of feats and the conversion of many feats into powers, the elimination of the vast majority of weird elven subspecies, and the way weapons will actually differ from one another.
Alright, I'll take up your modest proposal.

I see it as a half-hearted money-grab. No amount of polish can hide the fact that WotC likes to invent a new system just to sell books. If anyone doubts me, just look at the Complete series in 2nd Ed, and the Complete series in Third edition. I wouldn't be surprised if there is another Complete series in fourth edition.

Perhaps the most simple reason of all is that my gaming group has decided not to move to 4e. We still have a library and are continuing to amass a library of 3.x material. We even have members who think it is balanced in plenty of aspects. Keep in mind we only have one Munchkin in our group and he usually bungles it up (he thought VoP was the bee's knees).

There we go two simple reasons that explain why I don't plan on moving to fourth edition.

Rutee
2008-03-24, 10:39 PM
I propose that anybody who posts in this makes one post, period, expressing the most basic version of their opinion, and tries not to start a flamewar.

This proposal is on a purely voluntary basis.
Seconded.

I'm digging the new edition. It appears to value stuff I value, and agree with how I think things should be run. Also adding abilities and tactical options to the non-magi is <3

It's too bad they went back, seemingly, to making the non-magi non-fantastic, on their face :P

Corsec1337
2008-03-24, 10:50 PM
I was the only one in my gaming group who showed positive interest when the announcement came out at GenCon. It was as time rolled on and I listened to the dnd podcasts that I became less enthusatic about it. I had previously had quit WoW over the past summer and was dissapointed when I heard that was what DnD was becoming. The game is becoming more simple to play in the hopes of taking away some of the WoW audience. The DND RPG online is a shame that is only there to suck money out of you with you getting a basic starting set and are to buy expansions to make the online experince flashier. The murder of the Dungeon and the Dragon magazines was disapointing. The moving to an online format further upset me as I enjoyed the table top aspect of the game more than anything else. The lack of preparation and game testing that has gone into the game. The screwing of third party companies (Paizo, Green Ronin) in not releasing the 4th edition stuff so they can't make up some interesting things for GenCon.

Other than that, the best is the fact that 3.5 books are suddenly alot cheaper on Ebay. :belkar:

sonofzeal
2008-03-24, 10:57 PM
I have no complaints about 4e, and I like that they're putting more thought into making characters playable at lvl1 and increasing parallels between magic and melee (which should help balance issues).

I do plan to keep playing 3rd Ed though. I have neither the time nor money to invest in a new system yet, and I rather like 3.5. I prefer to see 4e as a separate product, with a slightly different target market, that merely happens to use the same name. I see 3.5 as more or less complete, and after ToB it's about as balanced as it's ever going to be short of massive houseruling sprees. There's way more than enough classes/PrCs/feats/spells/whatever out there already, and I see no reason to switch any time in the immediate future.

horseboy
2008-03-24, 11:05 PM
Well, after chiming in on 4th threads, 4th edition:
I already play Mordheim. I already play Earthdawn. They're two great tastes that just wouldn't taste good together. Kinda like icing a cake with salsa.

SofS
2008-03-24, 11:15 PM
There isn't really a general opinion on this matter. It's a bone of contention for many.

Personally, I don't see myself playing it much, which makes my interest fairly theoretical. I think it looks like a well-thought-out approach to a style of gaming that I have little interest in. It seems like a sort of small-scale tabletop wargame in battle and a fairly abstract descriptive game outside of it. It's pretty far from the origins of the game, but that's what OSRIC and used bookstores are for.

Honestly, this whole thing isn't that big a deal rules-wise. Almost everything I've heard of in this new edition was an alternate rule or a splatbook for 3.5. Hopefully, people will be a little more civil about it in the future (on both sides of the issue).

AslanCross
2008-03-24, 11:24 PM
My reaction to it is generally positive. Not an overwhelmingly powerful reaction, but positive nonetheless. I like how it seems to be simpler and more streamlined.

Sstoopidtallkid
2008-03-24, 11:28 PM
I just got into 3.x. I have no desire to shell out money for 4.0, especially since it looks very bland. I've already spent a bunch of money, and especially with WotC's track record with balance, I have serious doubts about 4.0.

wodan46
2008-03-24, 11:29 PM
was wondering why I hadn't seen more 4th edition threads. Did past ones descend into flamewars and get locked?

AslanCross
2008-03-24, 11:33 PM
There are a whole bunch. They didn't necessarily become explosive flame wars, but many were rather circular in their arguments for or against it.

Oh yeah, the PHB link is down. :( I wanted to see it too.

Animefunkmaster
2008-03-24, 11:41 PM
I propose that anybody who posts in this makes one post, period, expressing the most basic version of their opinion, and tries not to start a flamewar.

Agreed.

First I feel it is too early to tell how streamlined and balanced it is. It appears to have less rolls in some areas more in others (like an are of effect is an attack roll for each target). Combats are supposed to have more rounds but rounds are done quicker. Without getting a full book of info it is almost impossible to say whether it is balanced or not.

I miss 3.5 printing. One thing that has got me excited for 4th is that there hasn't been much 3.5 books (recently) that interest me (Sans Elder Evils). I am opposed to 4th becuase I FEEL it is just a ploy to resell there game. In, what could be, my ignorance I FEEL that that WoTC's marketting of 4e has been trying to appeal to everyone while being a vague on specifics. What I don't understand is why there is such support for 4th when there are dms who freak out about things like Tome of Battle becuase it is broken, when the power level at early levels in 4e is clearly stronger, and the mechanics are more akin to what has been on the ban list of most DMs I have noticed. This is all speculation and feelings, I am most likely still going to play 4e and probably have a lot of fun doing it.

Douglas
2008-03-24, 11:43 PM
From everything I've heard, they seem to be fixing almost every issue I have with 3.5. How good a job they actually did remains to be seen, but I'm optimistic about it.


I see it as a half-hearted money-grab. No amount of polish can hide the fact that WotC likes to invent a new system just to sell books. If anyone doubts me, just look at the Complete series in 2nd Ed, and the Complete series in Third edition. I wouldn't be surprised if there is another Complete series in fourth edition.
Of course there will be splatbooks. WotC is a private business and needs to make money, and selling D&D rulebooks is their primary source of income. This does not change that they are genuinely attempting to create the best game they can.

I had previously had quit WoW over the past summer and was dissapointed when I heard that was what DnD was becoming. The game is becoming more simple to play in the hopes of taking away some of the WoW audience.
Why is reducing the amount of number crunching required automatically making the game like WoW? WotC is attempting to build a game founded on solid principles of what is balanced and fun, and Blizzard tried to do the same thing when they made WoW. Of course there will be similarities - the games are close enough in genre that many of those principles will be the same, and adhering to them could not possibly produce any other result - but they will still have plenty of major differences.

The DND RPG online is a shame that is only there to suck money out of you with you getting a basic starting set and are to buy expansions to make the online experince flashier.
D&D Online has nothing to do with 4e.

The moving to an online format further upset me as I enjoyed the table top aspect of the game more than anything else.
Any and all online tools for 4e are entirely optional. They will be there because many people will find them useful and to facilitate play-by-chat for those who can't meet in person, but tabletop gaming will still be the primary focus. Bringing your laptop to the game will only be needed if you want to look things up on it rather than in your hardcopy rulebooks.

The lack of preparation and game testing that has gone into the game.
??? I have no clue where this idea came from.

The screwing of third party companies (Paizo, Green Ronin) in not releasing the 4th edition stuff so they can't make up some interesting things for GenCon.
Perhaps you should read the enworld compilation of 4e information (http://www.enworld.org/index.php?page=4e). In particular:

4e publisher support will be released in two phases.

Phase One is for publishers who want access to the 4e rules early. Taking a lesson from software publishers, WotC will be making available an OGL Designers Kit. This gives early access to rules and is offered to any publisher, not just the ones on the conference call. Access to the kit requires a legitimate business license, a signed NDA, and a one-time $5000 fee.

This kit will be available within a matter of weeks, as soon as several legal logistics are complete. It provides three hardcopy pre-publication versions of the three core rule books, copies of the OGL and SRD, and a FAQ. Publishers will continue to receive updates to these rules as changes are made, one in the beginning of February and possibly one in March. Publishers will also receive advance copies of the final rule books. Importantly, publishers who purchase the kit may begin selling product on August 1, 2008 – earlier than other publishers.

Phase Two is free and begins on June 6th, when the OGL goes live. Any publisher can then produce D&D supplements under the OGL, but these cannot be published until January 1, 2009.

Effectively, this means that publishers who pony up the $5000 fee get four months of advance production time for their products, can sell their products at GenCon and Christmas without a whole lot of competition, and have a five month grace period when theirs are the only 4e products available. Publishers who choose not to pay the fee will enter the market at a later date.

metalbear
2008-03-25, 12:40 AM
I for one am interested to see how this is going to play out. In fact I was so interested that I bought the boxed set off of Amazon. If it is half as good as I hope it is, I will be quite happy with all of it. So I'm keeping my fingers crossed.

Kurald Galain
2008-03-25, 05:00 AM
With so many different tiny bonuses and stacking feats, the new system is certainly a munchkin's dream, and I envision fun times ahead on the charop boards as people try to set records for highest jump, heaviest thrown weapon, and so forth.

Those debates, ultimately, will show whether the game is actually balanced. After all, WOTC has also claimed that third edition was balanced, and the forums proved them wrong. It would make sense for them to publish a "4.5th edition" (by any other name) two or three years from now, which they would claim would fix balance problems with 4.0.

Overall, it looks like an interesting ruleset for a tactical board game.

Sebastian
2008-03-25, 05:34 AM
My reaction to 4e.


Yawwwn!!!

I have yet to see a single thing that make me excited or at least interested to it. I hold still some hope for feats and rituals, but they are quickly waning

Kantolin
2008-03-25, 05:49 AM
I'm up in the air about it.

A lot of the concepts I've heard are interesting, but a greater amount thus far are awful - particularly their nonreasons for changing a lot of things, which seem to be 'we're changing this because we like screwing with people'.

On a scale of 1 - 10, with 1 being '4e sucks!' and 10 being '4e is perfection incarnate and can do no wrong!, I think I'm a 4. Trying to be hopeful, but getting more and more hesitant with the increasing irritation I see, but willing to give it a shot anyway.

Unless it bombs horribly, it'll be what I'll be psuedo-forced to end up playing anyway.

Skjaldbakka
2008-03-25, 05:55 AM
I don't like it, and won't run it, and probably won't play it, but tend to value the storytelling skill of the DM over my issues with a system. Which is to say, if one of the people I know are good DMs ask me to join a 4E game they are running, I would be up to it, including PbP, but I will never buy anything but the PHB. Of course, so far none of the DMs I respect in terms of local people I know have said anything even remotely positive about 4E.

Morty
2008-03-25, 06:04 AM
Some things are good, others are bad, I'm not excited about the gameplay style 4ed seems to encourage and the fluff generally sucks. My final decision will depend on if there will be enough good features to outweigh the bad ones.

Tsotha-lanti
2008-03-25, 06:33 AM
All the pages are "Suspended due to overtraffic".

Also, if you want to know an "overall reaction", you oughta post a poll. All a regular ol' thread gets you is a bunch of opinions that are drat hard to quantify.

ToB and Star Wars Saga Edition were both immense improvements (Defences instead of saves made a lot of sense to me, and fixing the 1st-level hit point problem was kinda necessary; I also like "X uses per encounter" abilities), and if the 4th edition really is more in that direction, yay. If it goes too far in that direction... eh.

D&D was already a "videogame" RPG, though. I only play it when I want to "play D&D" (or play Dark Sun, or Dragonlance, etc.; all the same thing). The game's a genre in its own right, and you can only play it with D&D rules. If I want to play a story or play a good tabletop RPG, there's plenty of other choices. (Including many better d20 games.)

It makes sense for WotC to go after market created by World of Warcraft (they'd be idiots not to, and I'd rather see them stay in business), but I'm not their target audience at this point. MUSHes over MMORPGs, thanks.


With so many different tiny bonuses and stacking feats, the new system is certainly a munchkin's dream, and I envision fun times ahead on the charop boards as people try to set records for highest jump, heaviest thrown weapon, and so forth.

There's no game system that can't be broken. At least it worked both ways; I certainly can out-optimize my players. The problem with D&D 3.5 is more that it doesn't actually scale; the higher the levels, the bigger the lack of balance. (Fighter 20 VS Full Caster 20?) Epic levels are a nightmare. If the new edition can fix all of that with a system that actually scales, good on it.

SamTheCleric
2008-03-25, 07:02 AM
I have 6 of the books on pre order (Core 3, 2 Forgotten realms and the first hardback adventure)... I'll be running the first "Test" table to see if we want to convert.

Overall, I like it and if my gaming group doesnt, I'll continue to play 3.5 with them and start up my own home game with 4e.

Mr. Friendly
2008-03-25, 07:30 AM
I like almost everything I have read about 4e - when those links open up, check them out and save a copy for yourselves; if you are undecided, try a playtest game.

Overall though, the most impressive thing to me is everything I have learned since the 4e announcement was made:

If a company makes money selling a product, that company is completely invalidated and forever ruins that product.

That when you have made a spur of the moment decision to hate something, it is better to make up facts to discredit the object of hate, than to just admit that you have a personal dislike for it.

That Hasbro, after purchasing WotC, used a Time Machine to alter D&D from the very beginning, making it the fault of Hasbro and WotC every bad thing that has ever been done in the entire history of D&D.

Game balance is exactly the same thing as a pay-to-play online 3d MMORPG.

hewhosaysfish
2008-03-25, 07:30 AM
What's the overall reaction to D&D 4th edition?
Allow me to demonstrate!
*starts pouring petrol over thread and fumbling for matches*

My initial reaction was squeeing with neophilia. I like reading new systems and supplements and analyses thereof, sometimes as much as I actually like playing.
Once I got past that, I was very much attracted by the shiny things that WotC tried to tempt me with.
More cynical minds than mine responded to the shiny things of 4e with the odg adage "If it looks to good to be true..." and dragged my back from the brink of naive fanboysim.
Nevertheless, I still haven't come over to anti-4e side: I'm still keen to see what's new. I will certainly be browsing the 4e rules at the first possible opportunity and (unless this exposes them as truly dire) playing at some point.

For me, the best news in all the hubbub has been that there will be a free SRD for the new edition. A sort of "Try before you buy" option. Very nice.

I like what they've done with the idea of class roles, although they could have taken it a bit further, for me. Maybe they were afraid to change too much at once; maybe they wanted to leave more room for future splatbooks...

I like what they've done with racial progressions, especially axing LA and racial HD.

As for reshuffling the PHB races, I really couldn't care less. Most groups I know of will pick races freely from both the PHB and MM anyway, so nothing will actually change. The "relegation" of gnomes to the MM makes no more odds than moving you keys from the left pocket of your jeans to the right one.

I like what they say they're doing with magic items but I'll wait to see how well that matches up with what they've actually done.

Not sure about the changes to skills, saves and criticals. Hopefully it will be a meaningful improvement, rather than just a gimmick.

The Faerun reshuffle doesn't bother me. The setting, to my group, has never been more than a convenient way for the GM to get out of drawing his own maps and thinking up a name for the king.

Indon
2008-03-25, 07:58 AM
I propose that anybody who posts in this makes one post, period, expressing the most basic version of their opinion, and tries not to start a flamewar.

I move to bring the proposal to a vote. Aye!

About 4'th edition, I feel very strong... ambivalence.

On the one hand, I'm looking forward to the way traps will work, the reduction in reliance on magic items, the introduction of racial level progressions to replace the awkward RHD/LA system, and other aspects of the system.

On the other hand, I'm dreading the ability (power) system and its' implications, I dislike some of the measures that were implemented to decrease the impact of the dice in combat, and I'm pretty leery about the skill system, among other things.

Time will tell, but for now, I'm going to agree with Kurald Galain and say that I think 4'th edition D&D is going to turn out to be a very good tactical boardgame.

Starbuck_II
2008-03-25, 08:06 AM
I rather like it

I tried a playtest game.
The Ranger used his teleport sadly so he can better hit the enemy than they ganked him. He didn't die, but he was hurting for a while (used a few heal points)
The Cleric did go own later on in the final boss battle (with the hobgoblin Warcaster, his archer, and 2 soldiers); luckily the Pally used a heal check to stabilize the guy.

I have to say, the dailys if they hit are awesome: they really change how the the battle will go. But you have to know when to use them.

I liked how I never had to recount squares (1-1 movement): made it sorta binary (yes/no, can I move there).
I thought the Ranger was the best at knowing he will hit the enemy (his careful shot had a +10 in the pregen character).

The Fighter's Brutal Strike was good that it only is wasted if it works...because he missed with it 3 times.

I was a lot of fun. Making the terrain was harder. I didn't have a battlemat so I just took out lego pieces (and other stuff) for the terrain and spaced everything as best as I could.

Sir_Leorik
2008-03-25, 08:32 AM
Personally, I'm still on the fence until I actually get to play a session of 4E. However I know players who are still angry with WotC over the announcement at Gencon last year about 4E, and even angrier that Living Greyhawk was sacrificed to make way for Living Forgotten Realms. For the fiasco of the announcement, and not working harder to assuage the feeling s of the current customer base, WotC's marketing department should be fired. Out of a cannon. Into the Sun.

As far as the mechanics that I've seen, the classes seem rather homogenous, and while they solved the problem of the low level wizard who runs out of spells and needs to use a cross-bow, they replaced it with a situation where all the low-level characters will eventually run out of per-day/per-encounter powers, and are stuck using magic missile or whatever per-use power they have ad nauseum.

I hate the fluff they are pushing, and while I've run Points-of-Light campaigns before (Ravenloft is the ultimate PoL campaign) I may not want to do so all the time. I don't know how much of the fluff will affect the rules.

There are other problems, such as the legal department's delay in getting the third-party developers the GSL, the diagonal movement costing 1 square, and the fact that I need to buy another PHB if I want to play a druid or a bard.

However I do like that the rogue is finally getting some love from the game's designers. I have been playing Thiefs/Rogues since Red Box, and in each new edition they get the least attention from the designers. In 3.X, Fighters got new feats all the time, Casters got new spells, but rogues rarely got new abilities. In addition it seems that 65% of all monsters are not sneak attackable in 3.X, and the hide/move silently rules don't work. I'm hoping that the new stealth skill (which Rogues get automatically in 4E), and the addition of powers make rogues more useful than they are in 3.X.

hewhosaysfish
2008-03-25, 08:48 AM
Ravenloft is the ultimate PoL campaign

Really? From what I'd heard of Ravenloft, I would have thought of it more as the exact opposite: Points of Darkness. But not areas of light with points of darkness in them, though. Areas of darkness with scattered points of even deeper darkness.

KIDS
2008-03-25, 08:52 AM
Ok, is someone summing up the results or what? Is there a scale? What is our statistical sample? Yeah I'm nagging I know...

My opinion: I very much like it, am ambivalent to most changes and have only a few minor nitpicks. Overall I expect the gameplay to be easier, faster, allowing for significantly more balanced character combinations in significantly less accounting space.

Sebastian
2008-03-25, 08:59 AM
For me, the best news in all the hubbub has been that there will be a free SRD for the new edition. A sort of "Try before you buy" option. Very nice.


Sorry to burst your bubble but unless they changed it/I heard it wrong the new SRD will be little more of an index with a list of the things other publisher can freely use in their game, but without the text, just the references in the PHB and other books.

Indon
2008-03-25, 09:04 AM
Sorry to burst your bubble but unless they changed it/I heard it wrong the new SRD will be little more of an index with a list of the things other publisher can freely use in their game, but without the text, just the references in the PHB and other books.

Which means that all it takes is for someone who owns the books to make a "Game" of D&D that happens to list everything in the SRD... provided it's under the OGL.

Mr. Friendly
2008-03-25, 09:05 AM
Sorry to burst your bubble but unless they changed it/I heard it wrong the new SRD will be little more of an index with a list of the things other publisher can freely use in their game, but without the text, just the references in the PHB and other books.

Source? Link?

Edit: Also:

I see it as a half-hearted money-grab. No amount of polish can hide the fact that WotC likes to invent a new system just to sell books. If anyone doubts me, just look at the Complete series in 2nd Ed, and the Complete series in Third edition. I wouldn't be surprised if there is another Complete series in fourth edition.

I wasn't aware that WotC had assumed control of TSR when the Complete books began coming out.

Kurald Galain
2008-03-25, 09:12 AM
Sorry to burst your bubble but unless they changed it/I heard it wrong the new SRD will be little more of an index with a list of the things other publisher can freely use in their game, but without the text, just the references in the PHB and other books.

Really? Got a source on that, please?

If so, couldn't a publisher like d20srd.org simply publish said text on their website?

I'm wondering btw, WOTC claims that gameplay will be faster. However, we also know that whenever you're making a perception check, you have to check whether you're standing within five meters or so of the resident elf. These two appear to be contradictory, unless you're using the computerized version.

Likewise, it appears to be the case that a high-level character could conceivably have several dozen powers available (including twelve from the maximum amount of magical items he might wear), all of which could require a different roll against a different defense with different situational modifiers. While this certainly gives us many tactical options, it does not exactly allow one to finish one's turn quickly.

Sir_Leorik
2008-03-25, 09:14 AM
Really? From what I'd heard of Ravenloft, I would have thought of it more as the exact opposite: Points of Darkness. But not areas of light with points of darkness in them, though. Areas of darkness with scattered points of even deeper darkness.

No it's a PoL campaign, but the "light" is really a flickering candle in a deep, dark pit, with the wind threatening to put it out at any minute. One of the reasons that there would be PoL in Ravenloft is to torment the Darklords. Strahd has his latest scheme to get Tatyana's latest incarnation, when some guys with swords, muskets, and a few fourth level spells screw the whole thing up, and now he has to wait another twenty years. Note that the good guys in Ravenloft are not that pure, but they tend to stand out against the evil of the DLs. Take Rudolph van Richten for example: he cursed the Vistani tribe that stole his son Erasmus and sold the boy to a vampire, to be tormented by undead lent to the Doctor by Azalin. He then went on to spend years hunting vampires, but he always had the guilt of killing the Vistani with a pack of zombies. Now the PCs probably don't know this at first, knowing van Richten as a hero, but the DM could drop hints that he has a dark past, and make them wonder if they can trust him.

Or you can slowly reveal to them that the town of innocent villagers they've saved from sacrifice to the Wolf God is really a rival group of Werewolves who oppose the Werewolf Darklord of Verbrek. Of course if you do this too often the PCs just start killing or avoiding anyone they meet. Paranoia has its place in Ravenloft, but not too much. The goal should be that the PCs should be wary of strangers, but they should also want to defend the isolated hamlets from the encroaching darkness. They should learn to cherish small victories, because the Dark Powers that are running the show won't allow them to achieve large victories.

By contrast in the 4E fluff the PCs start out with a campaign full of darkness, but by 11th level, when they choose a Paragon path, they should have dispensed with the low level threat to the towns, and can move on to bigger and better things. By 21st level they get an epic destiny, and are fighting demons, devils, and the evil deities on their turf. By some point that sort of campaign will either no longer be PoL, or the DM will have to stretch the plot to make it fit PoL.

elliott20
2008-03-25, 09:24 AM
I'm still waiting to see what they have done with the social encounter mechanics. 3.5E social mechanics were... an after thought at best. So far though, I've heard that it basically plays like a videogame, which to me is not really good news.

AKA_Bait
2008-03-25, 09:36 AM
I move to bring the proposal to a vote. Aye!


I second the motion and request a vote by acclimation. Yea!

I would say that I'm skeptical with hints of dread. There are a few things that I know I will not like. That's mostly fluff but also things like the 8 hours of rest = full healing mechanic.

There are some things that look like they could be things I'd like, like the folding of skills, but without seeing the actual rules I don't know if their execution makes them better or worse than 3.X.

Then there are things I'm not really sure what to make of in terms of how they will effect gameplay and balance, like the reworking of Wizards into Controllers and putting them on the same mechanic for powers as Martial characters.

Being naturally pessimistic, given one set of things I know I'll dislike, one set of things I might like or dislike depending upon the details, and one set of things I really have no idea about, I'm firmly on the fence with apprehension.

kamikasei
2008-03-25, 09:37 AM
I propose that anybody who posts in this makes one post, period, expressing the most basic version of their opinion, and tries not to start a flamewar.

Agreed.

I am entirely ambivalent. 3e has many flaws. 4e may or may not fix them and may or may not create more than it remedies. It seems like a very extensive change and lacking experience with systems other than 3e myself I can't guess how it is likely to fall out. In general I approve of a simpler, more elegant ruleset that lets you come up with ways to resolve more situations with resort to fewer rules and less memorization. I don't know how well 4e will accomplish that. I am a little concerned that the designers are imposing more of their idea of how you should play and what a game should contain than is conducive to that elegance - we may end up with a system that handles certain playstyles and stories very well and is quite hobbled when faced with another. Many of the claims WotC are making for how the game has improved - say, multiclassing - I can't verify as we haven't seen enough of higher-level play to judge how things change as experience accrues. (Again, my ignorance of other systems hinders me.)

So I'll likely wait until 4e comes out and see what people on these boards make of it. Wait for the balance analyses to come in. Wait for people to try a couple of different styles of game with it. I'll likely pick it up unless it's judged quite bad or limited - I'm not heavily invested in 3e. From there it'll either take over my game group, or not.

All of this will depend on the actual, final game and how it plays. I consider firm judgements on it at this stage to be premature.


I had previously had quit WoW over the past summer and was dissapointed when I heard that was what DnD was becoming. The game is becoming more simple to play in the hopes of taking away some of the WoW audience... The moving to an online format further upset me as I enjoyed the table top aspect of the game more than anything else.

Okay, two things here.

1) Why did you quit WoW? Why do you think those reasons will be problems in 4e? Most complaints I hear about WoW tend to be about either a) the people on the servers or b) the grinding, etc. that seems to be a part of most MMOs. I don't see how either will translate to a tabletop game. I'm not sure I've ever heard of someone quitting WoW because the underlying system of classes and abilities wasn't to their taste.

2) 4e is not "moving to an online format" in the sense of becoming an MMO or impossible to play on a tabletop. It's a tabletop game. WotC are providing online tools so you can manage your game with a single laptop rather than a dozen three-ring binders, or play online with good and powerful aides if your group is scattered (i.e.: PbP, well-supported). Sure, there are a bunch of reasons why one might be concerned about this: they're charging for stuff that used to be free, they're raising barriers to entry, an online tool will restrict what a DM can freely rule, or whatever. But they're a long way from killing off tabletop D&D played with pen, paper and dice.


It appears to have less rolls in some areas more in others (like an are of effect is an attack roll for each target).

Since those attacks against static defences take the place of saves versus static DCs, that doesn't actually amount to more rolling. A minor nit, but a symptom I think of the problem many seem to have of viewing tidbits about 4e through the lens of 3e and thinking that such-and-such is broken or wrong because it would be so if nothing else were changing.


I see it as a half-hearted money-grab. No amount of polish can hide the fact that WotC likes to invent a new system just to sell books. If anyone doubts me, just look at the Complete series in 2nd Ed, and the Complete series in Third edition. I wouldn't be surprised if there is another Complete series in fourth edition.

I can't speak for the 2e books but the 3e Completes hardly constituted a "new system". They're splatbooks. I don't imagine anyone doubts that 4e will have splatbooks. The alternative after all is that WotC publishes the core n books and then makes all its money after that point on miniatures, modules, etc. only.

I am fine with WotC publishing splatbooks if the core system is relatively balanced and the splats don't lead to the kind of insane combinatorial explosion of options that wizards, clerics, druids et al enjoyed in 3e.


they replaced it with a situation where all the low-level characters will eventually run out of per-day/per-encounter powers, and are stuck using magic missile or whatever per-use power they have ad nauseum.

That doesn't seem like a huge issue. It's five minutes' rest (I think) to get per-encounter abilities back. It's only the dailys that you would expect to run out of in any session-effecting sense.

Duke of URL
2008-03-25, 09:49 AM
If you like Tome of Battle and Warlocks, you're probably going to like 4e.

My biggest concern is that by making the mechanics of all the classes exactly the same, which will simplify play, they will take away the different play styles that make the 3e classes unique. But that's a concern of a possible problem, not a certainty that it will actually be a problem.

Mr. Friendly
2008-03-25, 10:10 AM
If you like Tome of Battle and Warlocks, you're probably going to like 4e.

My biggest concern is that by making the mechanics of all the classes exactly the same, which will simplify play, they will take away the different play styles that make the 3e classes unique. But that's a concern of a possible problem, not a certainty that it will actually be a problem.

Have you tried doing a playtest game given the available rules? It is incomplete, but gives a good mechanical feel and illustrates the real differences between the classes.

Sebastian
2008-03-25, 10:23 AM
Really? Got a source on that, please?


Not at the moment, sorry, maybe I can find something later, but you could try start searching at enworld (www.enworld.org) I found it in their forums (that are a great source for 4e news in any case)

It could be just a rumour, after all, but I think that something user-friendly as the old OGL and SRD is a thing of the past.


If so, couldn't a publisher like d20srd.org simply publish said text on their website?
Maybe, it depends on the SGL, I suppose.
I don't think it will be as easy as a doing a cut-and-paste, tho.

Indon
2008-03-25, 10:26 AM
Likewise, it appears to be the case that a high-level character could conceivably have several dozen powers available (including twelve from the maximum amount of magical items he might wear), all of which could require a different roll against a different defense with different situational modifiers.

Yeah, Wizards has to do a careful balancing act with power selection - there's a fine line between "Not enough options, this character is boring," and "Too many options, combat moves slow so this game is boring."

They'll probably only let characters accumulate 20 or so powers total (max), though, and probably not let them have access to them all at once. I say this based on the Tome of Battle. There probably won't be that much need for many more powers usable than that, though, and this largely avoids caster-induced narcolepsy (of players, not characters).

Starbuck_II
2008-03-25, 10:29 AM
I second the motion and request a vote by acclimation. Yea!

I would say that I'm skeptical with hints of dread. There are a few things that I know I will not like. That's mostly fluff but also things like the 8 hours of rest = full healing mechanic.

You can only do a extended rest 1/day. So it is basically similar to D&D in 3.5 as long as you had a Cleric. I can't remember ever needing more than 1 day of rest in 3.5.
They balanced this with AP lowering back to 1. APs are rather useful so I can see why.


Then there are things I'm not really sure what to make of in terms of how they will effect gameplay and balance, like the reworking of Wizards into Controllers and putting them on the same mechanic for powers as Martial characters.


Much easier to balance if everyone uses same mechanic.

AKA_Bait
2008-03-25, 10:56 AM
Well, so much for the motion.


You can only do a extended rest 1/day. So it is basically similar to D&D in 3.5 as long as you had a Cleric. I can't remember ever needing more than 1 day of rest in 3.5.
They balanced this with AP lowering back to 1. APs are rather useful so I can see why.

I understand the argument that it's balanced because in 3.x typically everyone got fully healed by the party cleric/favored soul/etc at the end of the day but conceptually it is a yard different. It is one thing to get the party healed at the end of the day because one of the PC's calls down the power of their god to do some magical healing and quite another to just have it be that Biff the Fighter heals that gored chest with a good nights sleep.

Also, I don't like action points. Should have pointed that out before.


Much easier to balance if everyone uses same mechanic.

Potentially true. Depends upon execution. Also, although putting everyone on the same mechanic may make it easier for WotC to balance the game I as a consumer don't really give a darn about that. I care that the game be as balanced and fun as possible. It matters not to me if it took the designers less time to put everything on the same system if the overall play of the system is less interesting and fun. Since I haven't seen it in action, and probably won't for a few months, I really can't make heads or tails yet.

Rutee
2008-03-25, 11:04 AM
I'm going to have to break the motion too, but it's mostly because I remembered one :E thing. Specifically, DAy/Encounter/At Will is already broken; There are At-Will powers.. usable X times/day (Like Healing Surges, and some of the Healing Prayers) It's likely to still be nowhere near the irritation of 3e's Preparation, but it's annoying to see promised mechanics not get taken properly.

Also, putting everyone in the same mechanical framework does not guarantee homogeneity. Trust me, my preferred systems put everyone on the same basic terms, and still leave plenty of room for /vastly/ differing playstyles. It's been done. Doesn't mean 4e will do it, but there's no reason to act like it's impossible.

Corsec1337
2008-03-25, 11:29 AM
Being "called out" twice I feel I'm in the right to respond. I was going to stay silent after my first post but I feel justified if people are quoting me and asking questions.

I quit WoW due to the fact I enjoyed DnD more and was getting tired of WoW in general. WoW is by far not truly balanced since patchs are constantly coming out fixing problems.

The DND Online feature is 4E. It's one of the things they are marketing in hopes of getting more people interested in playing. I use my laptop to reference books I don't want to carry along plenty of times. Yet, it's the fact that you pay a monthly online fee and "register" characters and what not. I just don't like the online feature for personal reasons. At DNDEXP, behind doors, alot of the game mechanics weren't set into stone. Two of the people in my gaming group were there with one working for Wizards and the other doing the delves. Exact stats for the monsters were adjusted before the opened the doors and there were even cases of DM's getting updates on the monsters they are running (all of this is what I heard from someone else).

The third parties have not received the booklet that gives them the information about 4E. It's all very hush hush on Wizards part due to them wanting to score big at GenCon. That's why Paizo announced that it's doing 3.75 so that they can plan for the future and not wait on Wizards to get on the ball.

Fixer
2008-03-25, 11:38 AM
I have not seen anything that has impressed me enough to purchase the new set of books.

Outside of the biggies of polymorph abuse (handled by talking with the player), grappling complications (no easy fix, often ad hoc, still working on it), and class imbalance (the weaker classes tend not to be taken anyway) 3.5 has little wrong with it. If I see something in 4th edition I really like I will likely reverse-engineer it back into my 3.5 games rather than upgrade.

Right now I have actually been considering giving the New World of Darkness a try rather than jump to 4th edition D&D. If I am going to have to relearn everything anyway, it might as well be with a system that has been tested for several years 'in the wild'.

AKA_Bait
2008-03-25, 11:53 AM
The third parties have not received the booklet that gives them the information about 4E. It's all very hush hush on Wizards part due to them wanting to score big at GenCon. That's why Paizo announced that it's doing 3.75 so that they can plan for the future and not wait on Wizards to get on the ball.

Wow. Nothing? Where did you hear that from?

If they paid the 5k for their Designers Kit (http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=dnd/4news/20080108a) back in January and still haven't recieved any of the promised materials (prerelease SRD, CORE Books and OGL) then WotC, if it provided agreements with deadlines and cashed those checks, is potentially in for a world of legal hurt.

Kurald Galain
2008-03-25, 11:55 AM
Wow. Nothing? Where did you hear that from?

Yeah, anyone got the scoop on this one? I'm sure WOTC isn't telling, but if some companies are hurt surely they can explain it to us, if or whether these rumors are true?

Rutee
2008-03-25, 11:57 AM
Right now I have actually been considering giving the New World of Darkness a try rather than jump to 4th edition D&D. If I am going to have to relearn everything anyway, it might as well be with a system that has been tested for several years 'in the wild'.

Hm, well I guess that logic sorta makes sense.


Wow. Nothing? Where did you hear that from?

If they paid the 5k for their Designers Kit back in January and still haven't recieved any of the promised materials (prerelease SRD, CORE Books and OGL) then WotC, if it provided agreements with deadlines and cashed those checks, is potentially in for a world of legal hurt.
That's what makes this so u nlikely to me. It seems like there would be more noise on nerd channels if they managed a hwem up that huge. Though, it's certainly possible that WotC managed to force them to sign one-sided contracts that provided no deadline for them..

Corsec1337
2008-03-25, 11:57 AM
Wow. Nothing? Where did you hear that from?

If they paid the 5k for their Designers Kit (http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=dnd/4news/20080108a) back in January and still haven't recieved any of the promised materials (prerelease SRD, CORE Books and OGL) then WotC, if it provided agreements with deadlines and cashed those checks, is potentially in for a world of legal hurt.

Second hand from two people that were at DNDEXP that spoke to the guy that runs Paizo. It's legal since the third party companies will eventually be getting it before it goes on the shelf. They won't be able to get any of there stuff to the printers in time though for GenCon.

Edit: I beleive they were on sided since everyone would want to know about 4E and the ball would be in Wizard's court.

AKA_Bait
2008-03-25, 12:13 PM
Though, it's certainly possible that WotC managed to force them to sign one-sided contracts that provided no deadline for them..

Yeah. If I were in WotC's shoes, that is exactly what I would have done since they hold pretty much all the cards. Even so, unless there is language that makes it explicit that WotC can produce whenever it wants (rather than the simple lack of deadlines) then there are still claims that can be made. WotC might have generated such language, but its defensibility in court is probably suspect.

If there are lawsuits being developed, I would not be surprised if the general nerd public was not yet aware of them at this stage. Also, given that fact that pretty much none of the text of the Core Books or SRD has leaked does make me wonder if the rumors of WotC not providing the documents are true. I would have expected more stuff to slip through the cracks by now.

Rutee
2008-03-25, 12:17 PM
My main objection to the idea that Wizard didn't do this isn't much of one, because WotC is run by monkeys (Except for the Apes in the Marketing department). Specifically, they're acting against their own interests, because it doesn't hurt to get the OGL stuff out earlier.

turkishproverb
2008-03-25, 12:18 PM
Wow. Nothing? Where did you hear that from?

If they paid the 5k for their Designers Kit (http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=dnd/4news/20080108a) back in January and still haven't recieved any of the promised materials (prerelease SRD, CORE Books and OGL) then WotC, if it provided agreements with deadlines and cashed those checks, is potentially in for a world of legal hurt.


PIazo did a poll asking what they should do, beteen 3.5 continued, wait for 4.0, or 3.75, and mentioned in the related thread that it was because they hadn't been sent the SRD as they were supposed to be.

Lower rumblings made it sound like no one had been sent the stuff, though this is a little less sure. Honestly, the way WOTC is being, I wouldn't' doubt it.

Mr. Friendly
2008-03-25, 12:21 PM
If there are lawsuits being developed, I would not be surprised if the general nerd public was not yet aware of them at this stage. Also, given that fact that pretty much none of the text of the Core Books or SRD has leaked does make me wonder if the rumors of WotC not providing the documents are true. I would have expected more stuff to slip through the cracks by now.

Unless of course the contracts WotC made them sign feature NDAs that include incredibly severe (like muli-million dollar) penalties for disclosure.

If anyone is really feeling up to it, they could try emailing: mailto:linae.foster@wizards.com

Here is the WotC article (www.wizards.com/default.asp%3Fx%3Ddnd/4news/20080108a+D%26D+4th+Edition+SRD&hl=en&ct=clnk&cd=1&gl=us) discussing the SRD and OGL.

kamikasei
2008-03-25, 12:21 PM
Oh well, so much for good intentions. I feel it would be rude to ask a question and then ignore the answer.


I quit WoW due to the fact I enjoyed DnD more and was getting tired of WoW in general. WoW is by far not truly balanced since patchs are constantly coming out fixing problems.

WoW is played by several million people on a daily basis, many having more than one character, playing in a mechanically quite limited environment without human mediation. Given the amount of grinding, farming, and PvP multiplied and iterated over all the servers, I think it's fair to say the game has higher standards for balance. That, coupled with the fact that it is a computer game and thus can have actual bugs, makes the fact that it gets patched rather less than alarming to me. (Oh, and consider that those patches also affect the entire game world, changing things about the layout and contents of the areas, abilities and spawn rates of monsters, quest details, etc., not just the core mechanics and abilities of the players' characters. It's not as if Wizards maintain every campaign in D&D, everywhere.)

But yeah - WoW isn't so perfectly balanced that it never needs an alteration. I don't see what this has to do with liking or disliking either WoW or 4e for resembling one another or not. What does "D&D is becoming WoW" actually mean? If you are bored with WoW, what makes you think 4e will be like WoW in the ways that WoW bored you?


The DND Online feature is 4E. It's one of the things they are marketing in hopes of getting more people interested in playing. I use my laptop to reference books I don't want to carry along plenty of times. Yet, it's the fact that you pay a monthly online fee and "register" characters and what not. I just don't like the online feature for personal reasons.

You make it sound like the online component is somehow required. Nothing has indicated this. D&D Online is part of 4e, it is one of the things 4e includes. It is not true to say that "the D&D Online feature is 4e", as though if you don't use it you're not playing 4e. It's an optional service to which you can subscribe to receive certain benefits. If you have a personal dislike for online services generally then you can simply not use it and this shouldn't have any impact on your enjoyment or otherwise of 4e.

Look at it this way: thetangledweb.net includes character sheet hosting and, I think, features like map editors for PbP. Now let's imagine that those sheets were linked to databases of the full rules, so that each ability could list its details. Let's imagine also that they were publishing web zines full of articles, play tips, modules and scenarios, and new rules. Now, obviously you might look at such a service and decide that it's not worth the cost of subscription to you, but I have a hard time imagining that you would sincerely claim it's actually a bad thing that it exists. So why when Wizards provide something analagous is it a black mark against 4e?

Trog
2008-03-25, 12:23 PM
As someone who has, for years, invented and/or used various house rules to make melee combat more interesting, create fighting styles, simplify skills, I have to say that I like what I see so far.

Having different defenses to attack means that you may actually have to find a monster or Villain's "weak spot" in combat instead of just beating on them. More fantastic maneuvers make for more interesting visuals during combat (vs. the stand toe-to-toe "I swing at him. I hit." style of play). Most of all I like the balancing they have done to the classes and (hopefully) to the encounters.

I don't see this as a money grab. And don't get me wrong, WotC has made money grabs in the past. As did TSR. But this, to me, is worth the cost. The fact that it has lots of play-testing and refinement behind it shows through in each preview I see.

I see 4.0 as a necessary refinement of the 3.x rules set. 3.x made it so you had nigh limitless options for character building. And unfortunately you can take that too far. It makes the DMs life a living hell for making customized characters or monsters. 4.0 seems to be more "ergonomic" than previous editions in that respect.

So far so good.

Jerthanis
2008-03-25, 12:36 PM
Whether it's true or not, D&D becoming more like MMOs makes sense to me. D&D was almost certainly the game all the Everquest programmers played in their youths, and without a doubt was the inspiration for Warcraft and literally countless other games. In many respects, these other games are just playing D&D with different veneer.

The unique properties of these games allow for something unprecedented... millions of people involved in the continuous playtest of the same game, and instant feedback on the part of the developers. What this allows is a crucible for the development of game concepts that emphasize fairness and good gameplay.

The idea of D&D, the progenitor of all modern RPGs whether you like it or not, borrowing ideas from the games it has spawned is not D&D becoming dumbed down, but D&D observing the results of millions of playtests and applying the results.

That said, I've heard good things about the system, and I've heard bad things about the system. So far I'm very impressed with a lot of the information already released, and am ready to buy it and read through it on day 1. Things like the way traps and social encounters are handled (or are hinted at being handled) make me excited... the sample 1st level powers used by the characters in the D&D preview... the reports of the game running quickly, and combats resolving in short order, despite consisting of more distinct rounds (reportedly)... there's a lot of stuff I've liked.

I'm not sure yet how lethal it is, as I tend to like "PCs are in danger of dying when a battle is important" feel... and from the example monsters released in the pack it might be that that is the case... but some are really weak now, where before they were extremely dangerous. Bodaks, for instance, in 3rd edition are walking possible TPKs, and are serious business if you spot one. 4th edition Bodaks look like they could moderately inconvenience one person, and seem like little more than cannon fodder. And then there's the fact that some typical, flavorful, fun monsters have been so long-enduring in the game in part because they're specifically unfair to fight, and the mentality behind 4th seems to want to abolish all unfairness everywhere. Rakshasa, Golems, Ropers, 3.5 Balors... I could continue... and they're all fun because fighting them is sometimes a matter of, "Okay, out of all our combat options in general, only ONE ability of ONE party member can really win the day here." and it might be unfortunate to lose that old schoolness in watching Wizards pummel Rakshasa and Golems with spells like everything else. Then again, I have no idea how many of these mechanics actually run yet. I'll be happy to find out in June though.

Still, D&D isn't exactly my favorite system ever, and that's not going to change. I'm not a fan of class based, or level based games in general, and much prefer point-based, or straight up concept-based creation and advancement (or no advancement at all). My dream system would allow me to make up my own stats, like Human Occupied Landfill, or Wushu, (except, you know... actually work as a game)... which is why I'm interested in picking up Spirit of the Century.

horseboy
2008-03-25, 01:02 PM
Also, putting everyone in the same mechanical framework does not guarantee homogeneity. Trust me, my preferred systems put everyone on the same basic terms, and still leave plenty of room for /vastly/ differing playstyles. It's been done. Doesn't mean 4e will do it, but there's no reason to act like it's impossible.QFT
Whether it's true or not, D&D becoming more like MMOs makes sense to me. D&D was almost certainly the game all the Everquest programmers played in their youths, and without a doubt was the inspiration for Warcraft and literally countless other games. In many respects, these other games are just playing D&D with different veneer.
QFT1234

Sheriff of Moddingham: Please don't do QFT posts.

AKA_Bait
2008-03-25, 01:33 PM
Unless of course the contracts WotC made them sign feature NDAs that include incredibly severe (like muli-million dollar) penalties for disclosure.

Even still I would expect some leaking. Even if it is of the sort that gets posted one day and is down the next. SoThat the exec's of a company sign an NDA for the company doesn't mean that their employees have the sense to follow it. Nor, since the SRD is included, that they don't get hacked.


If anyone is really feeling up to it, they could try emailing: mailto:linae.foster@wizards.com

If someone wants to sure. I'd be very surprised if anyone asking about the business relationship bettween WotC and a Third party publisher even got a response. I'd be even more surprised if they did get a response and it was any more enlightening than "mind your own business". Personally, I'd consider it a waste of time, unless WotC is even more negligent than I have come to expect.

Lairship
2008-03-25, 01:33 PM
4th edition appears to be a streamlined and understandable high fantasy system. If thats what you want, alright.

However with the onset of 4th edition, 3.5 will become cheaper and well, thats pretty good too.

Frankly, if people are willing to make the jump, there are a lot of RPG's out there that are and will continue to be better in terms of content, range and role-playing. (Mutants & Masterminds, GURPS, World of Darkness ect.)

So in short, I think 4 edition will be a simple, easy rpg aimed at those new to roleplaying. I personally don't want it.

Mr. Friendly
2008-03-25, 01:46 PM
Bodaks, for instance, in 3rd edition are walking possible TPKs, and are serious business if you spot one. 4th edition Bodaks look like they could moderately inconvenience one person, and seem like little more than cannon fodder.

I think you may have been looking at the stats for Kobold minions, 'cause the Bodaks I am looking at are killing machines. First of all, you will be fighting 4 of them, second they are pretty nasty.... every time you attack, 5 damage and -2 to the attack... It has a pretty good attack, that when it hits you, weakens you and if you are weakened, it can hit you with the death gaze.

That still can be a TPK pretty well IMO, especially against the "weaker" Skulks which essentially "go ethereal"; 4 of them could be waiting for you and... BAM! One smacks you, weakens you, the next death gazes you, drops you to 0 hp and the third smacks you again and kills you.


And then there's the fact that some typical, flavorful, fun monsters have been so long-enduring in the game in part because they're specifically unfair to fight, and the mentality behind 4th seems to want to abolish all unfairness everywhere.

Yeah, this is kind of annoying, I think everyone agrees that big-time unfairness is a hallmark of a really fun game.


Rakshasa, Golems, Ropers, 3.5 Balors... I could continue... and they're all fun because fighting them is sometimes a matter of, "Okay, out of all our combat options in general, only ONE ability of ONE party member can really win the day here." and it might be unfortunate to lose that old schoolness in watching Wizards pummel Rakshasa and Golems with spells like everything else.

Rakshasa, Golems...

You know, in 2e they were Tough. In 3e they are a joke because of how SR works. There are so many spells that ignore SR that it is a joke; so I really wouldn't use that as a strike against 4e.

Ropers in 3e are broken. Seriously, 6 attacks that deal 2d8 STR each? Really? Either they crush the party easily or they are a joke, typically.

I really don't see the "awesomeness" of having one and only one person be able to interact with a fight. This also tends to be a one way street that allows Wizards and CoDzilla to participate, but not melee characters.

Kantolin
2008-03-25, 01:48 PM
As a note, this:


For the fiasco of the announcement [Referencing Living Forgotten Realms], and not working harder to assuage the feeling s of the current customer base, WotC's marketing department should be fired. Out of a cannon. Into the Sun.

Is rather true for me, although not strictly for the particular reason about Living FR eating Living Greyhawk.

It seems to me like a sizeable chunk of the changes 4th is making is for either circular logic or ridiculous logic, and a lot of it feels entirely like it's happening entirely to irritate people who currently play.

Now, granted, some of the changes are explicitly being made to aid in the fun department. For example, they're making healing more accessible, and their reasoning behind it is strictly mounted in 'more fun' and 'more interesting. Good show.

Then you get gnomes being removed from the PHB because they don't fit in the worldsetting... but then being put into the MM. So what, do they suddenly fit into the worldsetting now? Do things in the MM not fit in the worldsetting?

Will this make people who don't like gnomes suddenly interested in playing gnomes? I doubt it.

Will this make people who do like gnomes irritated? Likely.

Will this make a new person's enjoyment of D&D greater? Extremely unlikely, especially as they're not necessarily making it easier to pick your race with fewer choices, they're just removing a couple of them and tacking on a couple more.

So mrr. It's the 'We're doing this because we're idiots or something' which is making me most hesitant at what otherwise sounds like an acceptable or almost-acceptable system.

Jimp
2008-03-25, 02:15 PM
I'm looking forward to 4e. I dislike a lot of the fluff, but then again I would just be replacing it with fluff relevant to my own campaign settings anyway. I have not read the FR fluff changes yet though.
On a whole I'm optimistic.

Mr. Friendly
2008-03-25, 02:38 PM
It seems to me like a sizeable chunk of the changes 4th is making is for either circular logic or ridiculous logic, and a lot of it feels entirely like it's happening entirely to irritate people who currently play.

Such as? This is a pretty inflammatory statement. I don't suppose you can give an example.


Then you get gnomes being removed from the PHB because they don't fit in the worldsetting... but then being put into the MM. So what, do they suddenly fit into the worldsetting now? Do things in the MM not fit in the worldsetting?

They didn't say they took them out of the PHB because they didn't fit the worldsetting - they took themout because they lack their own unique niche. Essentially they are halflings, elves and dwarves rolled into one, for the express purpose of min/maxxing the stats you want. What unique niche do gnomes fill in the world?


Will this make people who don't like gnomes suddenly interested in playing gnomes? I doubt it.

Will this make people who do like gnomes irritated? Likely.

Will it make people who have no interest in gnomes play them? No.

Are gnomes still in the MM so players who like gnomes can still still play them? Yes.


Will this make a new person's enjoyment of D&D greater? Extremely unlikely, especially as they're not necessarily making it easier to pick your race with fewer choices, they're just removing a couple of them and tacking on a couple more.

Quick - explain to a new player the difference between a gnome, a halfling and a dwarf in less than a paragraph and without repeating the same phrase over and over.

Yeah, I can't imagine how replacing a xerox race and replacing a really difficult to explain as a PC race with 2 races that are vastly different from other PHB races can be a good thing...


So mrr. It's the 'We're doing this because we're idiots or something' which is making me most hesitant at what otherwise sounds like an acceptable or almost-acceptable system.

Translation: This isn't how I think that it should be done, ergo everyone who created this is an idiot. If I were making the PHB it would consist of nothing but every subrace of gnome, since everyone wants to play a gnome.

Rutee
2008-03-25, 02:54 PM
Will you /please/ not start a fight? This is getting old.

Kantolin
2008-03-25, 03:07 PM
I also see no reason to drive this off-topic. Personal reaction's been given, moving along. Arguments can happen in some other topic.

Jerthanis
2008-03-25, 03:50 PM
I think you may have been looking at the stats for Kobold minions, 'cause the Bodaks I am looking at are killing machines. First of all, you will be fighting 4 of them, second they are pretty nasty.... every time you attack, 5 damage and -2 to the attack... It has a pretty good attack, that when it hits you, weakens you and if you are weakened, it can hit you with the death gaze.

That still can be a TPK pretty well IMO, especially against the "weaker" Skulks which essentially "go ethereal"; 4 of them could be waiting for you and... BAM! One smacks you, weakens you, the next death gazes you, drops you to 0 hp and the third smacks you again and kills you.


Forgive me, I should have been more clear, they seem like cannon fodder for the level they appear at. 3.5 Bodaks are CR 8, you can face them at 6-8ish level, depending on your DM. At those levels, death is still far more than just inconvenient, especially since people who die to Bodaks rise as Bodaks themselves. 4th edition Bodaks are level 16, which could mean anything, but if compared to CR 16 monsters in the 3.5 Monster Manual, they're nothing. If level 16 is anywhere near as powerful in 4th edition as it is in 3.5, Bodaks will still be cannon fodder four at a time. However, I still don't fully know how this system will work, so you may be right.



Yeah, this is kind of annoying, I think everyone agrees that big-time unfairness is a hallmark of a really fun game.


In general, you're right (uh... your real statement, not the sarcastic reverse-statement), but occassionally a single monster that you can't use X strategy on means that you have to think on your feet, or prepare ahead of time to be ready for what comes up. Sometimes this is unfair. I'm not saying that it's unequivocally bad that these spots of unfairness are probably clearing up, I'm saying something is lost and something is gained.



Rakshasa, Golems...

You know, in 2e they were Tough. In 3e they are a joke because of how SR works. There are so many spells that ignore SR that it is a joke; so I really wouldn't use that as a strike against 4e.

Ropers in 3e are broken. Seriously, 6 attacks that deal 2d8 STR each? Really? Either they crush the party easily or they are a joke, typically.

I really don't see the "awesomeness" of having one and only one person be able to interact with a fight. This also tends to be a one way street that allows Wizards and CoDzilla to participate, but not melee characters.

Okay, yeah, SR is kind of wonky, so that's a bad example, but I partially chose them because of your final statement about melee characters. If the Wizard's Magical abilities will always work the same way, there's none of the traditional need to change strategy based on what comes up. They may have introduced a new method of requiring this change in strategy, but I can't say that for sure.

I like the idea that every character can contribute in some way to every encounter... I'm just saying that stylistically it loses something worthy of being nostalgic for. Remember the picture in the 1st edition AD&D PHB where the heavily armed fighter is depicted jumping into the wizard's arms in fright of the Rust Monster? That's the feeling I'm expecting to put away into nostalgia territory when 4th comes out.

Just trying to clarify my opinion.

Kioran
2008-03-25, 05:31 PM
Hmmm. Iīm rather wary, or shall we say negatively predisposed towrds 4th Ed. I think that it isnīt going to be a rework of D&D, but rather a tactical boardgame with some loose connection and the same name. I probably wonīt buy it and look over itīs SRD for some time before even considering it.
I do not dispute they have some good ideas, or even a better playtest than the last edition, but I think they went for the wrong goals in the first place, with the kind of gameplay that appeals more to people wo didnīt play D&D in the first place (more Spirit of the Century, Exalted etc....notably, an unusually high percentage women compared to older editions, but thatīs beside the point).
It doesnīt look like D&D to me anymore, at any rate.

On the upside, I can shoplift a few good mechanics, which will doubtlessly be in there.

Terraoblivion
2008-03-25, 05:38 PM
So there is something wrong with women playing D&D, Kioran?:smallconfused:

Anyway like i said i am quite positively inclined towards the game, female and own D&D books stretching back to second edition. D&D might not be my favorite system, but it is still one of the three systems i have played the most and one of the two i have sunk the most money into, the other being Exalted.

Also i wouldn't exactly call Exalted a tactical wargame, it has less of a combat focus than D&D and rules that make accurate measurements of location less important.

Rutee
2008-03-25, 05:42 PM
DnD already is a tactical wargame, going strictly by the system. The only way it's becoming moreso is measuring things in squares instead of an arbitrary distance measurement.. but everything broke down in 5-10 foot increments to be easy to measure in squares anyway.

And.. yes, Kioran, Terra pointed out the opposites in your own argument. If you want to appeal to the sorts who play Exalted or SotC, you go the /other/ way.

Kurald Galain
2008-03-25, 06:05 PM
So there is something wrong with women playing D&D, Kioran?:smallconfused:

No, rather I'd say that there's something wrong with D&D, or at least less desirable about D&D in the eyes of (many) women, as seen from the apparent fact that the percentage of female players is lower for D&D than for most other roleplaying games.

Terraoblivion
2008-03-25, 06:14 PM
Probably true. He just wrote it in a stupid manner, that strictly speaking meant that it was wrong to appeal to women among a whole lot of other people. I need to be allowed to make somebody squirm for that kind of mistake occassionally or i will enter withdrawal.:smalltongue:

Artanis
2008-03-25, 06:19 PM
My personal reaction is cautious, mild optimism. There's a lot there that's really promising, but I've made a point of avoiding passing judgement until I can actually see the system. I see no reason to praise or condemn things that we have a vague impression of at best.

The overall reaction reaction of the vast majority seems to me to be a fairly smooth spectrum that ranges between "wait and see" and "the preview info looks good, and I hope it turns out that way as well." I have never yet seen somebody come out and proclaim "4E R TEH BESTESTEST!", and the number of naysayers proclaiming "4E R TEH SUXXORZORZ!" is very small indeed.

Rutee
2008-03-25, 06:25 PM
No, rather I'd say that there's something wrong with D&D, or at least less desirable about D&D in the eyes of (many) women, as seen from the apparent fact that the percentage of female players is lower for D&D than for most other roleplaying games.

If I were to take a stab at it, that it's a Tac-RPG. This may seem senseless coming from a woman who /likes/ Tac-RPGs, but that's just it; If I want a Tac-RPG, I'll play something that calls itself one. It's not my focus in playing Roleplaying Games.

As Cliche as it sounds, I'd rather focus on the people a the table and enjoying myself with them, then the characters/miniatures. Sure, nothing /forces/ me to play DnD with a focus on the character, but it's all the system supports. And that's fine, but it's hardly my aim.

Indon
2008-03-25, 06:33 PM
DnD already is a tactical wargame, going strictly by the system.

I'm not sure if this is accurate, in practice. I say this because D&D (3'rd edition) does not prominently feature one of the major features of tactical games - ability range.

I mean, when was the last time you played with a mat encompassing more than 200 feet? For most ranged weapons, this is significant only so far as if you're incurring a -2 penalty to hit. Medium and Long range spells hit pretty much anywhere in that range.

The only ranges of tactical significance in the scales (3'rd ed) D&D combat is commonly run at, is the Short spell range, throwing weapons, and 40/60/80 feet, being the Charge ranges of small, medium, and large creatures.

Meanwhile, I'm pretty sure all the ranged powers the sample characters had had very tactically relevant ranges - as such, positioning - and thus tactical depiction - becomes that much more important.

Moff Chumley
2008-03-25, 06:33 PM
I eagerly look forward to 4e, because even if there are balance issues, I'll stick with what I always do and make good use of the rule "If it looks absurd, feels absurd, and plays absurd, it's absurd." I like the fluff, the class and race replacements are very tasteful, and most of all, my players have sworn off 3.5. :yuk:

Kurald Galain
2008-03-25, 06:33 PM
Okay, doing a rough count of the reactions so far, I end up with the following statistics, which make a pretty even split:

Positive: 39% (Terraoblivion, TheOOB, Rutee, Starbuck_II, KIDS, Trog, Zincorium, AslanCross, Douglas, Metalbear, Tsotha-lanti, SamTheCleric, hewhosaysfish, Duke of URL, Jimp) (and Moff Chumley by whom this post got ninja'd)

Neutral: 32% (Holywhippet, Hadrian Emrys, sonofzeal, SofS, Kurald Galain, M0rt, Indon, Sir_Leorik, AKA_Bait, kamikasei, Jerthanis, Artanis)

Negative: 29% (DementedFellow, Corsec1337, Sstoopidtallkid, Animefunkmaster, Sebastian, Kantolin, elliott20, Skjaldbakka, Fixer, Lairship, Kioran)

Disclaimer: This is based upon my interpretation of what people have said in this particular thread. I make no guarantees that I haven't misunderstood anyone; my apologies if I have. This post makes no warranty, express or implied, yadda yadda yadda. No goblins were harmed during the writing of this post.

horseboy
2008-03-25, 07:32 PM
Meanwhile, I'm pretty sure all the ranged powers the sample characters had had very tactically relevant ranges - as such, positioning - and thus tactical depiction - becomes that much more important.
Well, given my XP with my Aliatoc army using 4x4/4x8/8x8 boards, I'd say a larger battle map would just hurt assault armies meleers even worse.

Indon
2008-03-25, 07:35 PM
Well, given my XP with my Aliatoc army using 4x4/4x8/8x8 boards, I'd say a larger battle map would just hurt assault armies meleers even worse.

And 4'th edition's solution was to change the ratio of ranges to movement so that they're much more approximate.

horseboy
2008-03-25, 07:56 PM
And 4'th edition's solution was to change the ratio of ranges to movement so that they're much more approximate.True, but I haven't payed enough attention to the (D&D) 4th edition to see if they've come to the same realization. That, and I moved the day the eldar codex came out, so haven't gotten to play 4th (40k) yet. :smallfrown:

wodan46
2008-03-25, 08:44 PM
I think its important to remember that the Player's Handbook is the documentation for a combat system, Monster Manual gives you targets for the combat system, and Dungeon Master's Guide gives you excuses to fight said targets. The roleplaying aspects of D&D are mentioned to a good degree, but the real roleplaying material is in the supplementary material and the imagination of DMs.

As such, saying that 4th edition has become more of a tactical wargame/board game on the basis of looking at the Player's Handbook is somewhat unfair, as it is simply documenting the class construction and combat mechanics that have always been present in D&D.

4th edition has taken some degree of inspiration from video/computer games, but the inspiration mainly comes in the form of a combat system that is more efficient and better balanced.

For example, think about the various powers. They give fighters more options than "attack" and "attack harder". From a strategic standpoint, different at-will abilities will be useful in different situations, and enemies might adapt to them if you use the same one frequently. From a roleplaying standpoint, characters might not use their daily power when they need to, but when the character would feel like using their ace. From a numbercrunching standpoint, having several attacks listed up front on the character sheet for the best at-will powers means you spend less time reading bull rush rules.

horseboy
2008-03-25, 09:08 PM
As such, saying that 4th edition has become more of a tactical wargame/board game on the basis of looking at the Player's Handbook is somewhat unfair, as it is simply documenting the class construction and combat mechanics that have always been present in D&D.D&D has always been a tactical wargame with RP tacked on. 3rd added the board game aspect, and 4th is just refining that part of it.

Jayabalard
2008-03-25, 09:15 PM
D&D has always been a tactical wargame with RP tacked on. 3rd added the board game aspect, and 4th is just refining that part of it.Nah, it was originally a roleplaying game and rules for tactical wargaming were tacked on to deal with the stuff that actually needed rules (ie everything except for the RP). Gradually the wargame bits started leak into the roleplaying since some gamers want specific rules for everything.

Rutee
2008-03-25, 09:18 PM
It evolved from Chainmail. How are you getting anything /but/ Tac-RPG?

Chibiqueso
2008-03-25, 09:59 PM
Firmly waiting to form a complete opinion until I can actually read all of core.

Max Graeves
2008-03-25, 10:50 PM
My opinion...*looks over at bookshelf*...lessee, about 25 books, at 30 bucks a pop...nope, too much money invested.
My wife and I are casual players...we play maybe two to three times a month. Our dm still has a ton of modules for us to enjoy (about 100 last count). Given our casual gaming style, that should keep us going for another year or two, at least...and I'm just mastering 3.5.

Plus, they took out gnomes as a starting player race...unforgivable.

Yahzi
2008-03-25, 11:16 PM
Time will tell, but for now, I'm going to agree with Kurald Galain and say that I think 4'th edition D&D is going to turn out to be a very good tactical boardgame.
My sentiments exactly.

Yay for improved math & balance, boo for even more focus on PC-centric combat.

Kioran
2008-03-26, 04:07 AM
Probably true. He just wrote it in a stupid manner, that strictly speaking meant that it was wrong to appeal to women among a whole lot of other people. I need to be allowed to make somebody squirm for that kind of mistake occassionally or i will enter withdrawal.:smalltongue:

I could dig myself in deeper.....I wonīt. Iīll smirk at home behind my screen. But yes, Kurald Galain got ot right on spot - D&D and women mainly didnßt go together because most women I know do not like mechanical character creation taking more than actually playing thee first session, or resolving 6 rounds of combat in 2.5 hours. Those are the major drawbacks of 3.5, the latter of D&D in general. 4th Ed is promising (I donīt know if falsely) to make things more fluid. White Wolf did it all along, and both WW and 4th Ed are significantly higher powered, at least in the beginning.

However, reduce complication and you also remove some of the complexity (not the same thing!) one finds useful. For example, the fact that in 3.5, one can express, in pretty specific in-game terms, whatever one character can do, well, except Profession, but that one was borked anyway.

Both are changes which appeal to many male gamers as well, but also too many women who didnīt like a more complicated D&D terribly much in the first place. Itīs an observation. If you think mentioning it is somehow offensive or problematic, thatīs your problem. Oh, and those are changes I dislike (I wants my complexity and moderate power), so there.......

Sebastian
2008-03-26, 05:05 AM
I think you may have been looking at the stats for Kobold minions, 'cause the Bodaks I am looking at are killing machines. First of all, you will be fighting 4 of them, second they are pretty nasty.... every time you attack, 5 damage and -2 to the attack... It has a pretty good attack, that when it hits you, weakens you and if you are weakened, it can hit you with the death gaze.

That still can be a TPK pretty well IMO, especially against the "weaker" Skulks which essentially "go ethereal"; 4 of them could be waiting for you and... BAM! One smacks you, weakens you, the next death gazes you, drops you to 0 hp and the third smacks you again and kills you.


-Death gaze is a per encounter power
- it can still fail and be wasted
- even if it hit it just send you to 0hp, to die you must go under negative half hit points, by the time you meet a bodak a single hit wold not be enough to kill even a wizard.
-after a single healing you are again into the fight, and the bodak don't have the death gaze anymore.

A TPK? hardly. Maybe if the party already exausted all his Healing salves and daily powers, and maybe not even then.

Sebastian
2008-03-26, 05:08 AM
Quick - explain to a new player the difference between a gnome, a halfling and a dwarf in less than a paragraph and without repeating the same phrase over and over.


A race that need to be explained and that can be explained in a paragraph or less is hardly worth playing anyway.

Indon
2008-03-26, 10:22 AM
D&D has always been a tactical wargame with RP tacked on. 3rd added the board game aspect, and 4th is just refining that part of it.

I ask you, what 'board game aspects' did 3'rd edition add?

Flanking? It's much simpler than the facing system was, and relatively easy to run without a board. "Hey, is Bob across from the Orc? Awesome, we're flanking."

Ranges? AD&D did not have standardized spell ranges - the Short/Medium/Long was a magnificent simplifier that reduced the 'boardgame' requirements of the system.

3'rd edition was, dare I say it, less of a tactical wargame than AD&D was.

Edit:

Quick - explain to a new player the difference between a gnome, a halfling and a dwarf in less than a paragraph and without repeating the same phrase over and over.

"Gnomes are small, magical trickster-types, Halflings are Tolkien-hobbits with the name changed to avoid copyright violation, and Dwarves in D&D range between Tolkien-dwarves to Warcraft-dwarves."

I can think up other convenient fantasy sources if you want me to describe the difference in a paragraph for someone who has never read Lord of the Rings or played a later Warcraft game.

Of course, I'd cite "Warcraft gnomes" for some campaign settings.

Kurald Galain
2008-03-26, 10:33 AM
I ask you, what 'board game aspects' did 3'rd edition add?

Er, the greater availability of and focus on actual board pieces and game pieces? The fact that the 3E introductory box in effect is a board game? The percentage of players who play D&D on a grid-based board with playing pieces has increased a lot from 2E to 3E, because that's the way WOTC is marketing it; this percentage can be expected to increase further for 4E.

Mr. Friendly
2008-03-26, 10:52 AM
Also, on the topic of Bodaks... you could send a single Bodak after an 8th level party. So, really it isn't that much different than 3e. And it would seriously maul the party in that context.

But, whatever. Bodaks are weak, 4e spells suck, 4e is a wargame and 4e = WoW. :smallannoyed: *sigh*

Duke of URL
2008-03-26, 02:29 PM
Positive: 39% (Terraoblivion, TheOOB, Rutee, Starbuck_II, KIDS, Trog, Zincorium, AslanCross, Douglas, Metalbear, Tsotha-lanti, SamTheCleric, hewhosaysfish, Duke of URL, Jimp) (and Moff Chumley by whom this post got ninja'd)

I'd put myself at "neutral", not "positive".

ColdBrew
2008-03-26, 02:48 PM
Go ahead and mark me down for "positive". I look forward to the new system and believe the positive changes will outweigh the negative.

Reel On, Love
2008-03-26, 02:49 PM
Positive. The new edition is gonna play great, and "it's become LIKE A VIDEO GAME/MMORPG/whatever the cool new thing to compare it to is" arguments are invariably puerile.

horseboy
2008-03-26, 02:50 PM
Er, the greater availability of and focus on actual board pieces and game pieces? The fact that the 3E introductory box in effect is a board game? The percentage of players who play D&D on a grid-based board with playing pieces has increased a lot from 2E to 3E, because that's the way WOTC is marketing it; this percentage can be expected to increase further for 4E.Yup. Grids, grid movement, miniatures, all went from being from being colorful options to incorporated into the rules. Nor do I recall TSR ever producing a "Miniatures Hand Book".

I wouldn't be surprised to see later 4 or 4.5 go wysiwyg.

Solo
2008-03-26, 02:50 PM
Put me down for Neutral. I'm going to wait and see the actual game before I judge it.

My Awesomeness puts itself down for Neutral as well.

Reel On, Love
2008-03-26, 02:54 PM
Yup. Grids, grid movement, miniatures, all went from being from being colorful options to incorporated into the rules. I wouldn't be surprised to see 4 or 4.5 go wysiwyg.

I'm sorry--given things like reach weapons, attacks of opportunities, spells that hit everyone within 15' of each other, &etc, how was 3.5 not incorporating grids and miniatures (to see where you are on a grid) into the rules?

Arbitrarity
2008-03-26, 02:56 PM
He means 2E was less grid centric. I wouldn't know, not having the rules.

Indon
2008-03-26, 03:41 PM
I'm sorry--given things like reach weapons, attacks of opportunities, spells that hit everyone within 15' of each other, &etc, how was 3.5 not incorporating grids and miniatures (to see where you are on a grid) into the rules?

Out of that, only the reach weapons both aren't intuitive enough to be played without a grid (Who am I next to? I withdraw), and weren't in earlier versions of D&D (Fireball).

Though I guess 3.x did market the grid much more heavily than AD&D did, even as the rules themselves were probably slightly less reliant on it.

In 4'th edition things have come full-circle. Wizards is continuing to push the grid/miniatures setup, and the rules support it much more than they once did.

Morty
2008-03-26, 03:48 PM
Out of that, only the reach weapons both aren't intuitive enough to be played without a grid (Who am I next to? I withdraw), and weren't in earlier versions of D&D (Fireball).

Though I guess 3.x did market the grid much more heavily than AD&D did, even as the rules themselves were probably slightly less reliant on it.


My group tried to play 3.5 D&D without a grid and it was a pain. We kept forgetting where is everyone and what are the distances between combatants. The fact that our DM liked to set us up for long-range archery combats only made it worse. So 4ed isn't really more grid-centric than 3ed, only more honest about it.
I was actually wondering if my opinion should be moved under negatives, but there are enough good or at least not ridiculous things about 4ed for me to remain neutral, especially since wizards released some mechanics without "it's so cool" hype.

Indon
2008-03-26, 03:55 PM
My group tried to play 3.5 D&D without a grid and it was a pain. We kept forgetting where is everyone and what are the distances between combatants. The fact that our DM liked to set us up for long-range archery combats only made it worse. So 4ed isn't really more grid-centric than 3ed, only more honest about it.

Really? I ended up running grids less in 3'rd edition than I did in 2'nd edition. This was because of the range thing I noted earlier - we mostly fought within 100 feet, which made most ranges moot (except with throwing characters). The melee characters were generally more concerned with ranges than the ranged characters were, in fact.

And long-range combats wouldn't have fit on our table, so we were even less likely to bother when they happened.

In fact, the last time I ran a mat was for an Exalted campaign (it was a full-scale battle, so yes, positioning was quite important).

4'th edition has a myriad of abilities like, "Move a guy two squares". These are abilities which don't really do anything unless you're running a grid.

Morty
2008-03-26, 04:04 PM
4'th edition has a myriad of abilities like, "Move a guy two squares". These are abilities which don't really do anything unless you're running a grid.

Not really, as I belive it was confirmed that square still equals five feet. So instead of pushing the enemy two squares, you push him ten feet.

Smight
2008-03-26, 04:27 PM
I understand the argument that it's balanced because in 3.x typically everyone got fully healed by the party cleric/favored soul/etc at the end of the day but conceptually it is a yard different. It is one thing to get the party healed at the end of the day because one of the PC's calls down the power of their god to do some magical healing and quite another to just have it be that Biff the Fighter heals that gored chest with a good nights sleep.




band-aids heal everything (http://www.vgcats.com/comics/?strip_id=228)
still neutral but magic 8 ball says 'odds do not look good'

Indon
2008-03-26, 04:30 PM
Not really, as I belive it was confirmed that square still equals five feet. So instead of pushing the enemy two squares, you push him ten feet.

In contrast, how often did anyone actually use Bull Rush?

Morty
2008-03-26, 04:35 PM
In contrast, how often did anyone actually use Bull Rush?

In my games noone ever, although to be frank I don't have all that much experience. However, I fail to see how is it of any relevance. Peope don't tend to use Bull Rush in 3ed very often because there's not much reason to do so unless you've got a build for it. It doesn't have anything to do with measuring distances and areas in squares or feet.

Indon
2008-03-26, 04:40 PM
In my games noone ever, although to be frank I don't have all that much experience. However, I fail to see how is it of any relevance. Peope don't tend to use Bull Rush in 3ed very often because there's not much reason to do so unless you've got a build for it. It doesn't have anything to do with measuring distances and areas in squares or feet.

No, no, I'm not talking about the squares-feet conversion. I'm talking about there actually being abilities that move specific distances.

If all movement is target-based, then it doesn't really matter much.

Player: "Am I next to him?"
DM: "No."
Player: "I move next to him."

But if you try using, say, Bull Rush:

Player: "Am I next to him?"
DM: "Yeah."
Player: "What can I push him into?"
DM: "The wall."
Player: "I want to push him off the cliff."
DM: "Well, OtherPlayer's in between him and the cliff."
OtherPlayer: "What? I said I moved to the best withdrawing position."
DM: "And that's what you did."

and so on.

3'rd edition didn't have very much of this. 4'th edition does.

ColdBrew
2008-03-26, 04:42 PM
Not really, as I belive it was confirmed that square still equals five feet. So instead of pushing the enemy two squares, you push him ten feet.
The point is that so many more abilities are dependent on positioning in 4E that running the combat in your head either requires mental gymnastics, completely discounting said abilities, or some bastard abstraction of distance and position.

Morty
2008-03-26, 04:53 PM
No, no, I'm not talking about the squares-feet conversion. I'm talking about there actually being abilities that move specific distances.

If all movement is target-based, then it doesn't really matter much.

Player: "Am I next to him?"
DM: "No."
Player: "I move next to him."

But if you try using, say, Bull Rush:

Player: "Am I next to him?"
DM: "Yeah."
Player: "What can I push him into?"
DM: "The wall."
Player: "I want to push him off the cliff."
DM: "Well, OtherPlayer's in between him and the cliff."
OtherPlayer: "What? I said I moved to the best withdrawing position."
DM: "And that's what you did."

and so on.

3'rd edition didn't have very much of this. 4'th edition does.

Well, yes, if there are many abilities like Bull Rush, then positioning and measuring distances becomes important. But then, it adds a lot of interesting options for combat, so I'm willing to swallow that, especially since as I said above, running combat without grid was a headache in 3ed as well.


The point is that so many more abilities are dependent on positioning in 4E that running the combat in your head either requires mental gymnastics, completely discounting said abilities, or some bastard abstraction of distance and position.

See above.

Lairship
2008-03-26, 04:58 PM
Put me down for Neutral. I'm going to wait and see the actual game before I judge it.

My Awesomeness puts itself down for Neutral as well.

You mean, unaligned. :smallcool:

Indon
2008-03-26, 05:06 PM
Well, yes, if there are many abilities like Bull Rush, then positioning and measuring distances becomes important. But then, it adds a lot of interesting options for combat, so I'm willing to swallow that, especially since as I said above, running combat without grid was a headache in 3ed as well.

Well, some people like the more tactical nature of combat, and some people don't.

Personally, I don't lean much one way or another, though I do have one specific campaign which would require a strongly tactical system - one that I wouldn't really have been able to run under 3.x D&D, but expect to be able to in 4.0. So that's kinda nice.

Morty
2008-03-26, 05:10 PM
Well, some people like the more tactical nature of combat, and some people don't.

That's true, but I don't expect non-tactical comat to be impossible in 4ed, you'll just have to translate everything from squares to feet.

Prophaniti
2008-03-26, 05:44 PM
My opinion:

Rules changes are fair to good. They're putting some real effort into it, and I think the changes look good on paper. I'd like to try them out myself, but I'm pleased so far.

Changes to the basic D&D universe, though... these I do not care for. I am most displeased with the decision to make dragonborn and tieflings basic races. Doing that loses the uniqueness and rarity that were almost the only things making them cool in the first place. Now it's like they're handing emo roleplaying options to us out of the box, for those people who like emo and are too lazy to develop their own background.

Removing Gnomes from the basic races is another example. Sure, everyone hates WoW gnomes, but D&D gnomes were just fine (yes, I've actually played them, in a real game with real people). As the Giant demonstrates in his 'The New World' articles, it doesn't take much effort to make gnomes interesting and unique. The only thing they lack is popular appeal.

Honestly, it seems to me that the financial success of 3 and 3.5 has gone to their heads. They seem to be thinking 'Let's see how far we can go with this.' It may work for them, it may not. I just know that I won't be jumping on the bandwagon any time soon, nor pre-ordering and waiting in hushed anticipation for the arrival of my new books (as I did with Dark Heresy).

I'll probably just look at someone elses or download a (probably illegal) pdf that I'm sure will be available within a few days of the release. If I like what I see then, I'll buy my own. If not, there are certainly no end of hobbies clamoring for my attention, and that of my wallet.

Dark Knight Renee
2008-03-26, 07:49 PM
My opinion of 4th edition is thus: I don't really care. Unless WotC utterly failed in everything they set out to do, it won't be applicable to my only current D&D game, due to the fact that the spellcasting characters won't be convertable (within my standards for internal game consistancy), at the very least.

Therefore, 4E does not effect me directly. If, after it's been released and people haven't declared it a load of crap, I'll probably become interested in it for it's own sake - especially if it is more balanced and makes more sense than 3.5E (I personally value making sense more than balance... Me + D&D = dead catgirls).


Edit: I haven't been keeping up with 4E updates, either, no just for the above reason but also because I find it fairly pointless. Until the full set of rules are released, the juicy tidbits are entirely without meaning.

kamikasei
2008-03-27, 05:11 AM
Changes to the basic D&D universe, though... these I do not care for. I am most displeased with the decision to make dragonborn and tieflings basic races. Doing that loses the uniqueness and rarity that were almost the only things making them cool in the first place. Now it's like they're handing emo roleplaying options to us out of the box, for those people who like emo and are too lazy to develop their own background.

Dragonborn aren't "emo" now and I know of nothing to suggest that they'll be so in 4e.

Tsotha-lanti
2008-03-27, 05:35 AM
Dragonborn aren't "emo" now and I know of nothing to suggest that they'll be so in 4e.

But it's the new cool insult!

Sebastian
2008-03-27, 05:36 AM
The point is that so many more abilities are dependent on positioning in 4E that running the combat in your head either requires mental gymnastics, completely discounting said abilities, or some bastard abstraction of distance and position.

Just think to "kobold tactics", the kobold shift one square every time someone adiacent to him move, or it was someone moves adiacent to him? either way without a grid using this kobolds would be a mess.

Mr. Friendly
2008-03-27, 06:11 AM
I'm interested to know something, since a few people have made mention about how they dislike the "tactical combat" aspects of 4e, I am curious what they were doing in 3e and 2e and 1e......

Strictly warfare with them as Generals?

Sebastian
2008-03-27, 07:23 AM
I'm interested to know something, since a few people have made mention about how they dislike the "tactical combat" aspects of 4e, I am curious what they were doing in 3e and 2e and 1e......

Strictly warfare with them as Generals?

Are you honestly saying that the level of tactical combat in 2e and 3e is the same of 4e?

In 2e tactical combat , short of some heavy houseruling, or use of some of the latter sourcebooks was almost irrilevant.

In 3e it depend on which sourcebook you use, but even at his lower it is higher than in 2e.

In 4e, I don't know how much customizable it is, but from what we have seen is at 3e core + tome of battle + (probably) heroes of battle level, and this at 1st level.

Just because I like a little salt in my food it doesn't mean I would love to eat a 1kg-block of pure salt.

Mr. Friendly
2008-03-27, 07:30 AM
So, Sebastian, is it your contention then that 1e/2e/3e combat was not tactical? Or at least less tactical? Because Heroes of Battle took a really long time to come out for 3e.

Indon
2008-03-27, 07:41 AM
I'm interested to know something, since a few people have made mention about how they dislike the "tactical combat" aspects of 4e, I am curious what they were doing in 3e and 2e and 1e......

Strictly warfare with them as Generals?

A lot of the time for both AD&D and 3'rd edition, combat was simply run without a map.

I ended up using mats more often for AD&D combats (particularly against more than one opponent), mostly because of facing and partially, I guess, because I was younger and simply less experienced as a gamer.

For 3'rd edition combats, we would use mats when the DM said we'd be using them - I hadn't run into a group that wasn't able to run combat without them.

From the way abilities are looking in 4'th edition, it's just plain going to be way harder to run without a mat. The kobold shiftiness is another example of the kind of ability that's hard to keep track of in one's head in a significant way.

Mr. Friendly
2008-03-27, 07:54 AM
So, Indon, you did have combats?

And those combats typically involved the party and whatever monsters/enemies they were fighting?

Would you say that those combats involved some planning, occured on a battlefield and conisted of of small-scale goals and objectives that served a role in facilitating a larger goal? (either success of the battle or success in the campagin)

Dervag
2008-03-27, 08:21 AM
So, Indon, you did have combats?

And those combats typically involved the party and whatever monsters/enemies they were fighting?

Would you say that those combats involved some planning, occured on a battlefield and conisted of of small-scale goals and objectives that served a role in facilitating a larger goal? (either success of the battle or success in the campagin)I think you've misunderstood his complaint.

The complaint is not that "4th Edition has too much tactics" in the sense that there are combats requiring "planning... and consisting of small scale goals and objectives..." That is a very literalistic, and not a very reasonable, interpretation. I don't think it's supported by the text of what Indon is saying at all.

The complaint here is that it looks to Indon as if 4th Edition has a large element of chess-like maneuvering on a battle grid. That's a very specific complaint. It is not a complaint that remotely resembles the thing you're insinuating that Indon is saying. Indon is not saying that he did no battle planning in earlier editions. He's saying that he could often get away without laying down a big grid of five foot squares to fight the battle on.

You may or may not be familiar with 1st and 2nd editions, but it was certainly possible to work without a grid there. You might run into problems of who is fighting who and what ranges are, but it could be done. In 3rd edition, fighting without a battlegrid was harder because more of the rules were designed to use a battlegrid. For example, thieves' backstab was replaced by rogues' sneak attack. And sneak attack usually requires flanking. Which requires two characters to be precisely aligned on a battlegrid with respect to their opponent.

This kind of square-by-square maneuver bears almost no resemblance to real life warfare, but it is a key aspect of "tactical wargaming." Which is the sense Indon is using the word "tactical" in. And Indon has very good and compelling reasons to complain if 4th Edition has turned up the level of tactical wargaming to the point where it is effectively requires him to use a battle grid.

Tsotha-lanti
2008-03-27, 08:25 AM
I'm interested to know something, since a few people have made mention about how they dislike the "tactical combat" aspects of 4e, I am curious what they were doing in 3e and 2e and 1e......

Strictly warfare with them as Generals?

Combat in AD&D wasn't terribly tactical; at least for my group, it was much more abstract. "I run up and smack 'em." In 3.5, we use a grid because you gotta, really, or you negate about half the combat rules.

It's no big deal as such; I like tactical combat. (Nahlakh, Natuk, and Pirates of the Western Seas are among my favorite CRPGs. Much more interesting than combat in Oblivion or Fallout or any other RPG.)

Unfortunately, D&D 3rd edition wasn't very good at it. Ultimately, combat is tanks slugging it out with full attacks, and the spellcasters (to who the grid really matters) controlling the fight. Combat maneuvers are next to useless. If 4th edition does have a good tactical combat system, it might actually be a worthwhile game when you're into small-scale fantasy-themed tactical combat.

In, say, Conan d20, it feels like it makes more of a difference; you're vulnerable even when you're tough, and if you let yourself get surrounded by mooks, you're likely to go down fast. You've got a lot of real and meaningful combat options (grappling, tripping, and overrunning are all necessary in fighting armored opponents, for instance). Having a grid is really useful. On the other hand, the way magic works, a grid isn't that critical; you can run combat more abstractly.

Indon
2008-03-27, 08:32 AM
The complaint here is that it looks to Indon as if 4th Edition has a large element of chess-like maneuvering on a battle grid. That's a very specific complaint. It is not a complaint that remotely resembles the thing you're insinuating that Indon is saying. Indon is not saying that he did no battle planning in earlier editions. He's saying that he could often get away without laying down a big grid of five foot squares to fight the battle on.

It's not even really a complaint - not on my part, anyway. There are upsides and downsides to using a mat versus not using one, and I don't have any strong opinion on the change.

I simply want to clarify what makes 4'th edition different in terms of its' tactical element.

(We got around the flanking thing by simply saying, "I move to flank with <guy>". It's convenient because once someone's engaged with a (Medium or Small) creature there's only one flanking position with them.

Gerrtt
2008-03-27, 08:47 AM
I'm not impressed yet, but I'm still watching. I just read through the PHB-lite and here's my reflection.

Frankly, as I'm getting a bit older and getting ready to get married I'm thinking that for the most part the hobby is going away as it is. I still love it, but I'm pretty sure I'll just have less and less time for it once I start working a real job and having a family. As a result of that I'm just not willing to devote time and money buying something that isn't the be-all end-all of gaming that finally satisfies the thirst.

It appears to me that the game is simpler. There's still a lot to keep track of in terms of modifiers from powers, but it is simpler for sure. That's a good and a bad thing, depending on how you look at. Personally, it feels simple enough to have taken away some of the character of the game that I have grown to love. End opinion on this subject.

But then again I'm the kind of person who recognizes that 3.5 has flaws and accepts them for what they are, seeing that something can be flawed and imperfect but still be fun.

Mr. Friendly
2008-03-27, 09:19 AM
Dervag, Indon, et. al. RE: Tactical Combat

I was mostly joking, playing on the phrase tactical combat, in that all combat which takes place at "squad level" is by it's very definition, tactical combat. I had thought my jokingly asking if you had played as Generals in previous editions would give it away...

In truth though I essentially reject the notion that D&D isn't or shouldn't be a tactical wargame, since that is what it is designed to be. Anything can be a roleplaying game, from magic the gathering, to checkers to connect four; that's all just a thin candy shell covering the chocolate underneath.

For those of you who worry about needing a battlemat I don't see that it will be any more needed than in 3e.

Indon
2008-03-27, 06:05 PM
Anything can be a roleplaying game, from magic the gathering, to checkers to connect four;
Checkers and connect four do pretty much nothing to facilitate roleplaying. Magic... you could RP like one of three people, one of them being Urza. And I'm pretty sure an Urza-RP deck would develop too slowly to beat most other decks.

I feel that, because D&D is designed for the purpose of being a roleplaying game, that D&D is a roleplaying game. D&D also prominently features combat which is essentially tactical in nature, because it is a roleplaying game designed originally based on a tactical wargame, much like Will Smith movies are based on the books.


For those of you who worry about needing a battlemat I don't see that it will be any more needed than in 3e.

I... okay.

horseboy
2008-03-27, 07:49 PM
D&D also prominently features combat which is essentially tactical in nature, because it is a roleplaying game designed originally based on a tactical wargame, much like Will Smith movies are based on the books.Ouch! Respond.
The first game I ever used minis for was WFB. Don't get me wrong, I love me some Mordheim, but I wouldn't call it an RPG. I've never needed minis for an RPG before, and with them trying to make them as mandatory as possible, it just doesn't feel like an RPG since you loose so much narrative control.

Starbuck_II
2008-03-27, 08:11 PM
In truth though I essentially reject the notion that D&D isn't or shouldn't be a tactical wargame, since that is what it is designed to be. Anything can be a roleplaying game, from magic the gathering, to checkers to connect four; that's all just a thin candy shell covering the chocolate underneath.

For those of you who worry about needing a battlemat I don't see that it will be any more needed than in 3e.

I know, I roleplayed Candy Land.

turkishproverb
2008-03-27, 09:14 PM
Ouch! Respond.
The first game I ever used minis for was WFB. Don't get me wrong, I love me some Mordheim, but I wouldn't call it an RPG. I've never needed minis for an RPG before, and with them trying to make them as mandatory as possible, it just doesn't feel like an RPG since you loose so much narrative control.

Seconded. SAnd seriously, if the guy's in this thread were seriously arguing that D&D is a tactical wargame they should probably ask themselves why the character interaction rules exist.

Rutee
2008-03-27, 09:26 PM
Mechanically, DnD /is/ a tactical wargame. That's why character interaction systems got as much attention as the Use Rope skill. That's why the distances on everything break into 5 foot increments. Granted that most of the actual 'tactics' come in preparation and build, but.. really. The game mat aspect seems to be a bit more enforced (I note this primarily because of the number of abilities that /move/ things; Nothing else actually /raises/ the amount of tacticalness) but anyone saying DnD is /becoming/ a tactical wargame wasn't paying attention when 3.0 was released.

turkishproverb
2008-03-27, 09:31 PM
Mechanically, DnD /is/ a tactical wargame. That's why character interaction systems got as much attention as the Use Rope skill. That's why the distances on everything break into 5 foot increments. Granted that most of the actual 'tactics' come in preparation and build, but.. really. The game mat aspect seems to be a bit more enforced (I note this primarily because of the number of abilities that /move/ things; Nothing else actually /raises/ the amount of tacticalness) but anyone saying DnD is /becoming/ a tactical wargame wasn't paying attention when 3.0 was released.


I'm not sure the guy who, in a debate about the monk class, states he doesn't see a problem with OOC behavior should be commenting what whether or not something is a roleplaying game.

Furthermore, a tactical wargame would not have the level of mechanical devotion to non combat that D&D does. At least, not any that could actually be played as a tactical wargame.




I ask you, what 'board game aspects' did 3'rd edition add?

Flanking? It's much simpler than the facing system was, and relatively easy to run without a board. "Hey, is Bob across from the Orc? Awesome, we're flanking."

Ranges? AD&D did not have standardized spell ranges - the Short/Medium/Long was a magnificent simplifier that reduced the 'boardgame' requirements of the system.

3'rd edition was, dare I say it, less of a tactical wargame than AD&D was.

Edit:


"Gnomes are small, magical trickster-types, Halflings are Tolkien-hobbits with the name changed to avoid copyright violation, and Dwarves in D&D range between Tolkien-dwarves to Warcraft-dwarves."

I can think up other convenient fantasy sources if you want me to describe the difference in a paragraph for someone who has never read Lord of the Rings or played a later Warcraft game.

Of course, I'd cite "Warcraft gnomes" for some campaign settings.


QFT. Great post man. Especially handling hte gnome issue

Rutee
2008-03-27, 09:46 PM
Alright, if you want to try and make that relevant again, when you had no idea what you were talking about then, just as you don't now, we'll make that relevant. Also, it's not /guy/. I recognize that my diction can come off that way but..

What I told you is that there is not a clear cut line between IC and OOC. Do you know /why/? Because every IC action that your character ever takes is filtered through your player's mind first. That character /does not exist/. Your character's viewpoint is going to fundamentally come through the lens of your own thought, and ultimately, that character serves one purpose; To help you get what you want out of the game.

You seem to think that for this to be true, you have to seek to win the game and humiliate all the players. No, it isn't. What you want out of the game is a completely personal thing, and varies greatly from person to person. What /you/ seem to seek is a depiction of another person, and an appearance of a living, breathing person, who talks to other living, breathing people, and reacts to a living world. And for the record, what I seek from an RPG (A term not mutually exclusive with Tactical Wargame, as DnD has most adequately proven for us both) has nothing to do with 'winning' or some crap either. *My* goal is to tell an interesting story.

However, this does not change that what your character does will be affected by what you want done. It just so happens that what you would want done, if indeed that was your intent, would for your character to appear to be a real person.

Now, on the actual topic rather then you successfully getting your fight, are we both talking about Dungeons and Dragons? 80% of the PHB goes to combat, easily. Almost 100% of every Monster Manual. The DMG is the only core book that can come anywhere /near/ a focus of non-combat, and even then a lot of mechanics go towards dungeon crawling, when they're not for combat. "The focus of mechanical devotion to non-combat" pretty much is in its World building. And contrary to what you seem to think, tactical wargaming is /not/ mutually exclusive to Roleplaying; For instance, WH40k and WHF both have players that roleplay everything after the fact and who's armies have stories. This behavior is also found in, of all things, nation-building games. Google.. oh "Honduras AAR", and you should find one from Victoria; The players play the game ICly, and write about what the characters did after the fact in one coherent story.

turkishproverb
2008-03-27, 09:50 PM
Alright, if you want to try and make that relevant again, when you had no idea what you were talking about then, just as you don't now, we'll make that relevant. Also, it's not /guy/. I recognize that my diction can come off that way but..

What I told you is that there is not a clear cut line between IC and OOC. Do you know /why/? Because every IC action that your character ever takes is filtered through your player's mind first. That character /does not exist/. Your character's viewpoint is going to fundamentally come through the lens of your own thought, and ultimately, that character serves one purpose; To help you get what you want out of the game.

You seem to think that for this to be true, you have to seek to win the game and humiliate all the players. No, it isn't. What you want out of the game is a completely personal thing, and varies greatly from person to person. What /you/ seem to seek is a depiction of another person, and an appearance of a living, breathing person, who talks to other living, breathing people, and reacts to a living world.

What are you talking about? I say that the DM/GM should be required to follow the same rules about characters knowledge the players are supposed to, you say that is bullcrap and character knowledge doesn't matter, and somehow I am the one who think the game is about humiliating players?

Your saying because I think the rules are right in stating you have to focus your play through what the character would know and think, I like degrading players? How does that make any level of sense? Especially sense I was talking about the characters getting hosed by a powergaming DM.
Wow, nice spin.

P.S. Sorry, its just English usually uses the male when gender is unknown. My apologies on getting it wrong.

Rutee
2008-03-27, 09:57 PM
What are you talking about? I say that the DM/GM should be required to follow the same rules about characters knowledge the players are supposed to, you say that is bullcrap and character knowledge doesn't matter, and somehow I am the one who think the game is about humiliating players?

Wow, nice spin.

If you check my post again, you will see that I didn't once claim that /you/ think the game is about humiliating players, etc. I said that you seem to believe that for OOC/IC to be the static blur that it is, one has to be concerned with winning, etc.

What I specifically said on the topic of character knowledge was that there aren't any rules about character knowledge, period. There'll be the social contracts, spoken or not, that set down the guidelines for how a character acts, and what knowledge they can act on, and that those contracts will vary from group to group. Some, for instance, may allow you to act on out-of-character knowledge when it makes for a more interesting game and can be handwaved away; Some won't care at all, because they're following DnD strictly as a hack n' slash. Some will have very rigorous standards to which IC knowledge came up. Most will probably have some sort of mutation.

And you wanna talk Spins? How about the part where you were saying it was perfectly in character for your non-spellcaster character to recognize and exploit a weakness of casters (The Spell Component Pouch), but completely OOC for /anyone who actually has this weakness/ to recognize it for what it was, and move to cover that weakness. Especially since your IC reason was "I have ranks in Know: Arcana, and watched the spellcaster". Because the spellcaster sure doesn't have ranks in Know: Arcana, and sure doesn't have to use the SCP /every time they cast/...

horseboy
2008-03-28, 09:32 AM
if the guy's in this thread were seriously arguing that D&D is a tactical wargame they should probably ask themselves why the character interaction rules exist.
Before I start loling, I want to make sure I'm loling at the right thing. Are you referring to the diplomacy skill, or how the rules for noncombat xp gain are all optional and a pittance? 3.5 is almost as bad, at least 4th has quest xp as a normal concept.

cheesecake
2008-03-28, 10:17 AM
I started playing 3, I never bought any books, I was a poor kid. Then we upgraded to 3.5 and I got a set of books for christmas! I doubt we ever upgrade to 4 at my gaming sessions. 2 of the 6 people there have invested a ton of money into their books collection. One guy has spent over 1000 dollars on books, mods, and figures(the figures don't mean anything edition wise, but he is crazy anyways for spending that much money)

I can't see us changing. The character sheets for 1st level look like they would be fun to play. Currently first level characters suck. We haven't started 1st level characters for a few years now, mainly just roll up at level 5.

Saph
2008-03-28, 10:36 AM
Negative.

I was going to say 'neutral', but for two reasons:

• I've yet to see anything in the 4e materials which makes me go "that sounds cool, I want to play it."

• The more aggressively pro-4e posters on this board all seem to believe that D&D should be a tactical wargame. Given that the D&D sessions I've enjoyed most have invariably been the ones which didn't play out like a tactical wargame, I'm starting to think that if they like it this much, I probably won't.

- Saph

Kurald Galain
2008-03-28, 10:38 AM
IOne guy has spent over 1000 dollars on books, mods, and figures(the figures don't mean anything edition wise, but he is crazy anyways for spending that much money)

Heh. It would be a good move for WOTC, then, to have 5th edition play on a hex grid, so that everybody has to buy shiny new miniatures... :smallbiggrin:

Mr. Friendly
2008-03-28, 11:10 AM
• The more aggressively pro-4e posters on this board all seem to believe that D&D should be a tactical wargame. Given that the D&D sessions I've enjoyed most have invariably been the ones which didn't play out like a tactical wargame, I'm starting to think that if they like it this much, I probably won't.

As an aggressive, pro-4e poster, I'd just like to say that I haven't ever said that *you* (in this case, meaning both you, Saph and you, the generic for all others) have to play D&D as a wargame. My contention is that D&D *is* a tactical wargame. To pretend that it isn't is simply absurd. Simple comparison: Combat - 1 whole chapter, plus multiple refs throughout. Diplomacy - 1 whole paragraph.

My simple point is that the core "engine" of D&D, since it's inception until now has been a tactical wargame. Where *you* take it beyond that is up to you. You could, if you had a willing and inclined group, play Uno and turn it into a roleplaying game, by making up the meanings of cards and assuming "roles". That's all a roleplaying game is, fundamentally.

Yes, over the years D&D has added more "programming" to deal with non-combat scenarios, but this has been fairly dismal. 4e is, according to the info we have and what the designers tell us, going to remedy things a bit more by creating an ability to run truly dynamic social encounters that give *actual* rewards. How that pans out remains to be seen - however even the promise of improvement is greater to me than "Ok, I take over the kingdom, I roll a 50 on my Diplomacy - the king is fanatically loyal to me"

Bleen
2008-03-28, 12:12 PM
Positive.
Slightly.

On one hand, a lot of what I feel is "Iconic" D&D is being gutted and thrown out the window, and in its place WoTC has tried to inject its own "feel" into the game, moreso than they did with 3.5e. It's sort of like my old friend suddenly vanished out of existence and was replaced with a person of similar characteristics but otherwise wholly different. And yes, D&D has a 'feel'. It's more flexible in terms of setting than some systems, but overall it still says "This is the style of game the rules were built to represent and it just won't work as well if you try to represent something else with them".

On the other hand, the global mechanic looks better, the overall system really does seem more polished and balanced, and that's good. If a combat really is as short as they say, that's good. If two classes of the same role are balanced against each other enough that I can play whatever Striker, Defender, whatever that I want and still feel accomplished in my contributions to the group, then I'll be satsfied with 4e and can shuffle away what bits of the fluff and feel I don't like in favor of a more streamlined system.

Once I spend my $90 on books though, the system better damn well improve on what it promised to improve on. So there's still room for me to go flying on the other side of the fence, trust me.

Rutee
2008-03-28, 12:18 PM
I heard combat takes just as long in 4e, but the fights are bigger, and each individual turn goes much quicker. I can't recall where that was though..

Indon
2008-03-28, 12:31 PM
I heard combat takes just as long in 4e, but the fights are bigger, and each individual turn goes much quicker. I can't recall where that was though..

The Ain't it Cool news review, corroborated by other sources.

Bleen
2008-03-28, 12:38 PM
How much bigger? What the heck was the norm, anyway?
The combats I'm used to usually have around five or six party members and upwards eight or nine mooks, and even the big bad keeps at least three or four lackeys around. From my experience, combat with more than eight combatants really gets slogged down..

Kurald Galain
2008-03-28, 12:44 PM
How much bigger? What the heck was the norm, anyway?

I believe the norm was supposed to be one monster vs. the entire PC party. At least, that's the way the CR system was designed. I don't believe most people actually played it that way, though.

Terraoblivion
2008-03-28, 12:45 PM
Including the guy who reviewed his experiences at...what was the thinly veiled ad event they had?

As for how battles are getting larger, Bleen, it is that they will move from 3.5's balance of four PCs against one opponent to one where it is an opponent per PC. That doesn't mean everybody played that way, just that it was what the game was balanced four. I never experienced playing that way for example.

Rutee
2008-03-28, 12:48 PM
I believe they've streamlined rules for minions/mooks to make them more usable in large numbers. Effectively, every encounter description I've heard went well over 8 combatants (Except for Party vs. Dragon TPK from DDXP), and the reports were that they were much faster in turn speed. The thing I'm not sure on is how that's been accomplished.

Bleen
2008-03-28, 01:07 PM
Yeah, that's what I mean. Big combats with 4-10 enemies seem to take a loooong time, and they're what I'm used to, so if those don't take two hours to complete then I'll be getting the good parts of my 4e sandwich I was promised.

Starbuck_II
2008-03-28, 01:34 PM
I believe they've streamlined rules for minions/mooks to make them more usable in large numbers. Effectively, every encounter description I've heard went well over 8 combatants (Except for Party vs. Dragon TPK from DDXP), and the reports were that they were much faster in turn speed. The thing I'm not sure on is how that's been accomplished.

Well, minions die in one hit based on level, level 1 minions only have 1 hp, lv 6 minion had 10 (Vampire Spawn). So easy to kill them.

You only have one attack usually: no 4 attacks/round warriors (exceptions exist I guess like Dragon gets both claws).

These might help time management.

wodan46
2008-03-28, 03:47 PM
"24 Zombie Rotters minions are a standard encounter for 6 level 1 PCs. Since minions die when they take damage, 4e minion encounters like this will be common."

So basically, every once in the while the DM can throw a big mob of whailing monster freaks for you to mow down. And they can do this at lvl 1 and still have it be balanced. And since minions die upon taking damage, you only have to make successful hit rolls, making math easier.

For designing encounters:
4 minions = 1 PC
1 standard monster = 1 PC
1 elite = 2 PCs
1 boss = 4 PCs

Since monsters are assigned levels based on equality with a player of the same level, it will be incredibly easy to design encounters.

As said before, a standard monster is supposed to match a lone PC, not an entire party.