Wednesday, January 11, 2012

News Filter: WotC Wants Help Developing D&D 5th Edition

  • If you've been anywhere near a gaming site (or even The New York Times), you would know that Wizards of the Coast has announced that they have begun development on a fifth edition of Dungeons & Dragons. Only this time, they want your help.

  • I would like to say that I have an opinion about all of this, but nothing all that strong comes to mind. I just don't have a horse in this race any more. I never even played third edition, much less fourth. I know the arguments and I understand where they are coming from, mechanically. If anything, I'm more interested in what is happening with the Old School Renaissance games like Lamentations of the Flame Princess.

  • If WotC came to me and asked what to do with D&D, I would suggest building the game modularly. At the core would be a stripped down game with an almost OD&D level of detail. Then you build on that foundation by adding more intricate systems, like tactical combat, for those who want an advanced game. D&D could be a game that handles all playstyles if it is presented correctly.

  • Again, I probably won't play a fifth edition. Unless maybe it is still around when my daughter gets older. But I will inevitably buy a copy, just to see how it turns out.

  • So how about you? What do you think WotC should do with the new edition?


  1. Honestly, I don't see what's so wrong about 4th edition, although maybe that's because I'm playing D&D again for the first time since high school which was nearly twenty years ago. Either way, I'm sure that people who believe that 3.5 is the one true edition will find something to hate about 5. As will the 4e people.

  2. The thing I didn't like about 4e was that is was basically a boardgame that allowed you to roleplay on the side if you felt like it, rather than a true PnP RPG. Many of the abilities described in the rules nearly required you to have miniatures set down on a map to figure out whether you can use them or not. In the olden days, all we needed was character sheets, dice, and a good GM.

    That said, over the holidays I played a boardgame based on 4e (The Legend of Drizzt) and found it to be a hell of a lot of fun. The rules do work quite well as a miniatures based combat game.

  3. The more rigid aspects are partly why I think I'm enjoying 4e, since it makes for an easier transition from my MMO playing back into true roleplaying. I've really been shocked at how many bad habits I've developed from MMOs over the years. Coming back to a PnP game where suddenly I have freedom to literally try to do anything, I often forget and just end up wanting to charge ahead and kill stuff.

    Grids and miniatures aside, all of the rules can be changed though. I wish more people kept an open mind and either pulled 4e rules they liked into their 3.5 game or vice versa.