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This is one particular reason why I've come to love E6 (E7 PF) as a whole game. 4th level Spells seems to be the start where magic takes a far stronger sense in the game but Martials (in this instance, any class with a full-BAB is considered so) still do significantly well because they're the only ones that have 2 attacks compared to the spellcasters.
I've felt the CORE system mechanics were so terribly bad for weapon-based users that it pushes the game towards playing spellcasters. Look at the diminishing attack progression. Look at the Full-Attack Action. Look at ALL the examples where you have to have a feat or take extreme penalties or get attacks with AoO. It's exclusionary-design means that if you don't have X to perform Y, then you're going to pay for it significantly OR it'll be very difficult to perform. To me, that's poor design.
Further the Fighter, in particular, really has nothing distinctive about it. It's focus on [Fighter] Feats in v3.5 and [Combat] Feats in Pathfinder still give it nothing concrete that says THIS is a Fighter. Not more attacks like in 5e, not distinctive abilities and powers like in 4e and not even weapon specialization like they had in AD&D 2e (if I remember correctly?). To distinguish the strength of the Fighter in d20 (3e/PF) they needed to give him ways around the systemic issues that applies to everyone using a weapon like ignores the Full-Attack + move restriction, makes a full 5th attack at their full BAB, increase ALL BAB by +1 or +2 at specific levels, automatic proficiency with all non-racial Exotic Weapons, bonus to saves against ALL magic / SLA's.
Looking at these, I'd actually want to play a Fighter besides for the usual 1 or 2 level dip.
So with all the Martial / Caster discrepancy threads coming in I figured that I delve into probably is one of the most systemic problems facing Martials with v3.5 and Pathfinder. The two being a Full-Attack action and descending attack bonuses. Now this isn't just a problem for Martials as all classes are affected by this to some degree however I feel Martial classes are affected, by far, more than spellcasters since they are the ones that use that particular system the most.
The first problem is Full-Attack. One of the problems this creates is rooting a weapon-based user in place. It doesn't matter if they wield a sword or bow, they only ever benefit from one of their biggest class features when they're standing completely still or have only moved 5-ft. Now imagine if a spellcaster, to cast higher level spells (5th level +), was under the same limitation. I think the entire game would shift in a different way in the way it's played. This also creates a divide in melee-weapon choices, thus making reach weapons FAR more preferable to one-handed/light weapons IF you want to make sure enemies don't slip by you and conversely, weapons like the Spiked Chain become #1 overall.
I'm not entirely sure why the rule of Full-Attack is in place? I don't really understand what it's exactly trying to emulate within the narrative of the game world? Why can't a warrior move 30-ft. and swing a weapon in 6-seconds? Is the time constraint of a round that pivotal to maintain that ALL classes are reduced to move + 1 attack or don't move + ALL attacks? Why is it there?
The second problem are descending attack modifiers. As the AC is static, the modifier is static too and the die roll represents chance / luck / fate / etc. But then why make it further complicated by making iterative attacks worse? What exactly changed between attack #1 and #2 or #3 or #4? What is this specific rule attempting to simulate? I don't think it's endurance or fatigue because it's the same with the opposed hand (a hand that is often 'weaker' by comparison). Does the monster somehow react exceptionally fast after the first swing is created? Even if you take a more narrative view of multi-attacking (each attack isn't 1 swing but the whole round is a commotion of parries and thrusts) then descending attacks don't necessarily make much sense. In sword fighting it's often the 1st attack that is a decoy or ruse that will open up you opponent to secondary and iterative attacks. Except in D&D/PF-Land where the first attack is always swung hardest and all other attacks sort of become weaker and slower and less useful.
So what this boils down to is a Warrior/Martial character who has to stand-still (barring a 5-ft. step) to get his full benefit BUT even then that benefit is hampered as those last attacks become just hopefull-critial threats anyways.
Now imagine if both those rules were removed! Yep, what would happen if the Martial / Warrior didn't have to stand in a 5-ft. area to be a Weapons-Master? What would happen if ALL of their attacks were accurate (and deadly)?
Now one serious downside to removing these restrictions is that you have to remove them from everyone. That means creatuers like Dragons and Hydras and the like can make all their attacks, fly, and be destructive forces of nature in their own right. Well, honestly, I'm OK with that. Dragons are scary dangerous and walking into it's DEN to throw down should be a sure-fire way to get eaten. If a Hydra has come upon you in surprise, best to scatter and used Ranged options until it's close to death. It would change the way the game is played but I think that change is ultimately for the better.
Possibly, it really depends on what you're looking for in an RPG. Saying the system more smooth is sort of hard to determine because if you're already geared towards the micromanaging nature of Pathfinder then you only notice a lack of it in 5e as there are FAR less fiddly bits in that system. For some, those fiddly bits are what drives the fun of the game where as for others it's more of a burden.
If you have a better understanding of the two systems, would you either point me to a link that describes the differences or would you take a few moment to quickly point out the finer points of 5th edition?
Magic is more limited in the later stages, gaining only a few spells from 6th through 9th level. Magic is also limited because of the Concentration mechanic. Because of this, magic-users aren't slapping multiple stacking spells to own encounters so quickly.
There is more emphasis on encounters and short rests compared to an all-day or X/day limit. Even spellcasters get benefits with short rests.
Healing doesn't require a spellcaster OR days of rest to regain due to full HP regain and Hit Die healing.
Many unnecessary restrictions were removed from hindering weapon-based classes. Example: Two-Weapon Fighting doesn't require feats or stat requirements; you can move-attack-move without a feat; no more god-awful Full-attack action, no more lengthy feat chains to get one good benefit.
Magic items take a back seat to character power, no longer required to possess 15 magical items just to keep up with the maths. Also, maths hacked down to normal levels so we don't have monsters with AC 45, +57 to attack & dealing 235 points of damage a turn.
Death is slightly harder to come by but much more permanent.
There aren't ridiculously obvious trap choices to get fooled by.
Forever Slayer wrote:
Big corporations are the bane of RPG's and Hasbro is no exception.
Why? By all accounts 5E is doing exceedingly well. 4E did exceedingly well at first go, and many believe 3E sold extremely well too. So if by "Bane" you mean making lots of profit, then......sure?
Forever Slayer wrote:
I believe D&D would be better off in the hands of a smaller company who does not see D&D as a mega money maker but as a table top game that may not earn you billions, will earn you a nice profit while giving gamers the game they want.
They did, back in 2000. It's called the OGL. Your welcome.
Forever Slayer wrote:
I see Hasbro as the kind of company that would continue to work on a brand to make it larger than it has. I see Hasbro as a company that wants to make it more interesting to people who might not ever have gamed before. I see Hasbro as a company that wants to do more with the brand other than basically sit on it for coppers a day. I see Hasbro as a company that wants to branch into other spheres of the entertainment industry so that we can enjoy D&D-ish things in addition to just the TTRPG side of it.
To me those are all great things to strive for. They've hit some set backs, yes but I think they're learning.
Perfection........? Now THAT is the real head scratcher
Why do you wish to take an elegant smooth system and make it complicated? I genuinely don't know why you would wish to do that?
I suppose there is a really strong desire for "Gritty" style combat and, I'm assuming, to make entering combat a really tough choice regardless of level? With rules regarding losing limbs even a 10th level Fighter with 75 HP is still wary of Kobolds and Goblins if they score a critical hit and chop off their arm.
Personally, I don't think D&D is the genre or game overall to mimic this particular style.
A few additional "Favorite things"
• Self Healing via Hit Die. Not as potent as Healing Surges but I'll take it where I can get it.
• Cantrips. YAY, no more Wizards with crossbows and can't be magic-users for 1/2 the day.
• Non-Magical Healing. Personally I would have loved to have a Warlord sub-class but some of the maneuvers and a feat or two can shore up this area quickly enough. At least I can hold out for future supplements.
• PRof. Bonus is universal. Long gone are the days of various attack progressions and multi-attacks decreasing with each swing.
Substance as in, options. A 1st level Fighter, Paladin, Ranger, Barbarian are all pretty much the same unless your human and the DM has agreed to the 1st - level feat variant. The paladin doesn't feel very divine until 3rd level.
After doing a few sessions with the non-Playtest rules and having access now to the PHB (instead of just the Core material) there are a lot of good things that I like:
• Bounded Accuracy
Things that I'm not a fan of:
David Bowles wrote:
So an active mechanic that requires interaction is boring compared to v3.5/PF's Lightning Reflexes of +2 to Reflex saves.....? Color me confused.
David Bowles wrote:
The Ork needs power attack so the effect of it scales with the BAB of the Ork.
Level and CR are still interchangeable here. If you want a higher level Orc, then use a higher value for the damage expression. -5 to attack, +10 or +20 or +30 to damage depending on what strength you want the Orc to be. Why is that difficult?
David Bowles wrote:
Monsters built like PCs level the playing field for both the players and GM. It also gives the GM opportunity to build some really cool mosnters!
See, here's where we totally disagree. As a DM for my group I've always felt constrained by the v3.5 system for creating monsters. Making them bend to the requirements of PCs is just too limiting. Want that Orc to wield two battle-axes, well he's gotta have Dexterity value of X and Two-Weapon Fighting feat AND Oversized Two-Weapon Fighting feat and that means he'll need to be Y level and blah-blah-blah. No thanks. I'll just write down "2-battle axe attack" on his character sheet and not bother with the minutia of rules-jargon for a monster that will most likely die in the 2-3 rounds of combat he's featured in.
Creature abilities in 4E and D&D:Next sort of replace the need for feats IMO. An Orc doesn't need Power Attack, he could simply have a line that says "-5 to Attack, add an additional +10 to the damage roll" or to illustrate Lightning Reflexes "The Orc has advantage when making Dexterity saving throws."
An endless list of feats based on HD isn't required (and good riddance).
That's exactly how the system is supposed to work. 40 Kobolds and other mediocre monsters need to be in larger numbers to be a significant threat otherwise we get 3E's and 4E's syndrome of being able to sit down on the ground and let the monsters attacking you, only hitting 5% of the time, which is moronic and stupid yet works RAW.
Just look back at Lord of the Rings where they enter the Mines of Moria: Do you think a group of nine 10th level v3.5, Pathfinder, or 4E D&D characters would've even blinked an eye at the goblins running down the walls towards them in that scene? Nope, they would've laughed as the Fighter greater cleaved / Encounter-Daily powered to his hearts content, the Wizard would've been dropping 20' areas of goblins on whim with fireball, scorching burst, or a myriad of other AoE spells, and everyone else would be killing 2-3 goblins per turn all the while the Goblins would've all had approx. 5% chance to hit them. At least with 5th Edition such a scene is particular fearsome to adventuring parties of most levels barring heroes ramped up with magical gear (something not inherent with the system math).
At first I thought so too until I came to the conclusion that I was doing it wrong with "balanced" encounters and trying to put an even amount of monster-types into these dungeons. For example, each room having 2 standard soldiers, 1 standard lurker, 1 standard artillery. It was pretty balanced but combats would then take 35 - 45 minutes. So I started throwing in LOTS of minions and maybe 1 standard, and the minions would often be a few levels higher than the PCs to make it more difficult, not to mention that I wouldn't differentiate which one was a minion and which wasn't, which tended to make the PCs pause when they were popping off Enounter and Daily powers. The frustration apparent on their face as they "waste" a precious resource on a minion is really priceless, muwhahahaha.
I think what happened is that the designers looked back on all their best and most memorable combats from previous editions and tried to engineer a system that would produce that result all the time, not realizing that a fight with a couple kobold sentries isn't supposed to feel epic.
Which is why, as a DM, it's important to gauge the relativity of your combat encounters. If you throw a few kobold sentries at the PCs, after 2 or 3 rounds and nothing significant has occurred, have the Kobolds retreat or surrender or *gasp* even reduce their HP to where the next shot kills them. The point of combat is to be dramatic, not just something to get into as a throw-a-way encounter. You can also run such an encounter as a Skill challenge. The point is to discern the reason for the Kobold's appearance and decide if combat is the best way to go about overcoming that obstacle. If the Kobolds are there protecting a way through a valley or bridge, can the PCs find a way around without engaging in combat? How about persuading the Kobolds to leave by bribing them or maybe looking for an alternate route.
Basically there are TONS of ways to get around a boring combat that will take 30 minutes but a lot of DMs are either too lazy to do something different or the Players aren't imaginative enough to find a simpler solution (as it pertains to 4E).
In my opinion, the best thing to do with 4E combat is to jettison XP counting, and find some other system for leveling up PC's that doesn't rely on X encounters per adventure, then limit combat only to meaningful, high stakes encounters. So a room in a dungeon shouldn't be an encounter, a floor of a dungeon should be an encounter. Anything incidental, like a rogue sneaking up to a guard and slitting it's throat, can be handled via skill challenge.
Well that's one way of handling it and I've done that before too. I also think people skip over the possibility of awarding story-based XP which helps alleviate the requirement for more combat to fill the XP gap.
I too have seen this before from quite a few people in the online community.
I'm just not sure the online community is that much of a significant portion of players for the game, at least from a polling perspective or as any sort of gauge on things like mechanics. Sure, things like Damage-on-a-Miss was a contentious issue but was this representative of the community on the whole or just those specific people? It's hard to say IMO because it's a topic that I've ONLY ever seen argued on Forums and not real life. Same thing with topics like healing, powers, spell-per-day, Liner Fighter/Quadratic Wizard, 5-Min work days, etc.
I think the designers received the best information they could and that it correlated, to a degree, what they were already going with. And in all honesty just because a group of people (say, 3e fans for example) play and love 3E or PF doesn't necessarily mean they like things such as save-or-die spells, wealth-by-level, or the deluge of Feats and Prestige Classes.
You mention Bounded Accuracy and I think that's probably one of the BEST innovations for the edition. Even though I enjoy playing v3.5 and Pathfinder and 4E one of the biggest problems I had when looking at those systems is the ridiculous height the numbers reach. I do NOT NEED a Fighter with +45/+40/+35 attack modifiers that deals 70s, 80s, or 100s of points of damage or AC to reach the 50+ to feel "Epic". I feel it was done because someone back in the 3.0 system creation thought "Oh, higher numbers means I can feel BIGGER and BADDER!" and all I felt it did was put an arbitrary and fictitious strain on class and monster design. Monsters in the CR 18 - 20 range just got Natural Armor +20 because the Fighter got +18 to 20 BAB.
Not only that but it completely removed these characters (and monsters) from the "commoners" of the settings. Even when reading novels like the Forgotten Realms epic heroes had flaws and could be felled by things like common weapons and people. In v3.5 I can make a 12th level Fighter that literally just sits on the ground why 9 orcs beat on him and they'll only damage him 5% of the time. That's just moronic.
There were several things in the forums discussing the rules that showed an overwhelming desire for certain things...but when you look at what happened it was as if this feedback was blatantly ignored in surveys, forums, and questionnaires.
Again, forum communities are not indicative of the overall attitude towards the edition, let alone specific mechanics. Going from what Mearls stated, it appeared from looking at the forums the community was "divided" however when looking at the survey data there was a lot more things the player base had or wanted in common.
I think if they had actually listened more to the feedback instead of what they wanted to absolutely have in it, we'd have gotten a game that was more a blend of 3e and 4e than something new that came out of their beta. I mean, point blank, those who were involved were all 3e and 4e players as the majority, and they were all trying to push their ideas from each of those respective editions.
Its funny you say this because I see a certain amount of people saying there's too much 4E (or insert the edition you didn't like here____) among community posters here, and in other places. TO me I think that means they did something right. Besides "powers" there's a LOT of 4E design in this edition. There's also quite a bit of 3E elements in the game as well, even looking at the books one could jump to the notion that it "feels" like 3E.
If they actually had listened and changed it accordingly, it would have been a pure blend of 3e and 4e without any of this limited stuff of +6 total over 20 levels as a bonus...or skills being handled like they are.
Perhaps the majority of people who play and like 3E/4E actually think +20 over 20 levels (or the silliness of the BAB system) was not only unnecessary but perhaps even disliked? Further, I've seen a LOT of people complain about skill ranks and points and how the classes were really deprived of points in both 3E and Pathfinder. The fighter getting 2 per level? Really? That's pretty terrible. I'm glad they got rid of points and I really hope they don't show up again in a WotC D&D system. This isn't GURPS.
They literally made up the rules and asked how people liked them. They took no advice on what NEW rules to implement. Instead, they just removed rules that they saw an overwhelming majority disliking...but otherwise, making up their own rules instead of taking suggestions of what others were suggesting, at least if you looked at the forums and the actual rules that were being suggested.
Well yeah but the rules changed pretty significantly as the process progressed over two years. I still have the very first playtest packet where there were only pre-generated characters. BOY do they look different than ones you can make now with the PHB. The rules, the idea about powers and feats and terminology all changing. The change to the classes and races are ALL different. And it was predominantly due to the feedback from playtesters. If people didn't playtest it and give feedback, why should their preferences be catered to?
It SHOULD have been something that looked a lot like PF but with a LOT of 4e stuff in there (maybe the defenses as 4e instead of saves...or with the HP boosters, or a second wind for all classes...or other items). That is if what was being discussed would have been reflected in their actual rules and utilized to actually create the rules, rather than only delete the stuff a huge number of people didn't like and discard the rest of the feedback in favor of their own rules they were writing in house.I'm glad it doesn't look anything like Pathfinder. For one, we already HAVE Pathfinder, and for free to boot. Why would I shell out hundreds of dollars for a system that only has some 4E-stuff bolted onto a d20/SRD system. No thanks, I don't need to pay money for that and I think a lot of others would feel the same. On the other hand, 5E looks like they took ideas and philosophy from a variety of editions to make their system. It has 4E-isms in there along with 3E-isms and 2E-isms, and 1e-isms.
How can any of us really know? We saw the surveys and we saw the results. The community is just one aspect of the equation. I think WotC knows the numbers better and wrote their rules accordingly. Sure, the designers had an agenda and idea going into 5E and I think they used survey feedback to tweak these ideas into the form the designers and players both wanted. I can only say that the overall feedback from Amazon reviews and the community (here and on other sites) is generally positive and receptive of this edition.
Which is fine if you follow the model of going up in level means specific creatures and races become a cake-walk to overcome and greater threats are from large or larger monsters, which now become common place.
But there are going to be homebrewed campaigns that don't follow this model. There are or will be DMs who want races like Goblins and Orcs to be the center-piece villainy of their campaign and it's more difficult to do that when PCs gain power yet the monsters shown quickly approach the point where they're effectiveness wears off. Personally, I'm not a fan of that. It puts too much focus on the PCs becoming "Super" heroes as they gain levels in a too steep vertical power jump as compared to a more lower, horizontal slope that 5E aims at.
ie. as PCs get stronger the default is the challenges they face have to be bigger and more elaborate and on a bigger scale to compete. Orcs and Goblins and oozes don't cut it and are replaced with Dragons, Devils, and Liches.
Sure unless I want an encounter to be specific and nothing in the Bestiary or NPC list suffices. Then what? I either come up with something that already incorporates what's already created OR I have to then take time to make it work. Sometimes the Bestiary doesn't have the sufficient creatures to fit in what I'd want them to do.
Plus, if it really was that much trouble, someone probably could take a monster or NPC and reflavor them into that type of creature without having to create them from the ground up...at least that's what I would do.
I do that as well.....now.....that I've had 14 year (and 5 with PF) to tinker with the system to know how and what I want it to do. I also don't hold my monsters to the same standards as PCs, which is basically what I'm saying here. IN 3x/PF the idea is that all monsters, PCs, and NPCs share the same building blocks of creation and for me, as the DM, that can put unnecessary constraints on the type of monsters or encounters I'd like to run. 4E, and to a slightly less extent 5e, have the same method of monster design being that they don't have to specifically conform to having X-feat, Y-Class, or Z-Race combo to achieve what I want them to do.
If one doesn't want to spend a ton of time creating NPC's and special enemies, why do it? There are tons of tools in PF that I've found to make it easy, quick, and painless.
Because I don't think the tools make it quick, easy, or painless.
Addendum: Now 4e DOES have some rather easy to use monster creation rules for specific creatures, if you want...but it still takes someone with a little experience to be able to balance it out against a party. A novice may create one that wipes the party or is wiped easily.
Compared to 3E/PF I've personally found the process far less time consuming and more in-line with what I want my PCs to face. For example, taking my ferocious Orc Berserker from earlier had I wanted to have him face 4 PCs (or, 5 as 4E goes) then I simply tag on a Solo role, make him a Brute (lots of HP to soak up multiple rounds of combat), and express his damage total based off his level. His attacks could be dealing 2d10 + 8 and knock people down at-will and he'll probably get a two-attack feature plus probably a burst 1 feature. Add in an aura 1 that drops defenses and have him get +5 to Saving Throws and 2 Action Points and I'm basically done.
In 3.X/PF I have to make sure he has X, Y, and Z feat to use two large Battleaxes. He'll have to have specific stats for those Prerequisites too. He'll have to have quite a few magical weapons and items to defend against the array of magical might a party will bring against him and a way to threatening multiple foes in a standard action and I'll have to add class levels which in turn adds in all sorts of other class features that might or (more likely won't) be important for the encounter at hand. NOt to mention the skill ranks per level and you can't forget about Skill Synergy. And of course a good portion of his stats will change when I make him "rage" which ups everything Strength/Constitution-based by 2.
Basically there's a LOT more involved with just tacking on a few PC levels onto a normal Orc Warrior than there is just making an standard 4E Orc into a Solo encounter.
I've played both systems so I'm probably biased in my opinion on the difficulty of both systems. Suffice to say that I felt it was easier to have unforeseen TPKs due to the danger of spells and Critical hits in 3.x/PF than in 4E.
I rarely use the PF thing if I don't have to, but in a crunch, when running APs or something where I don't want to look up the stats of a monster right then (I don't take all the bestiaries with me), and trying to play it off the hoof...then it's a great way to do something on the fly.
Yea, I've used that before and it works in a pinch. Similar to 4E's compendium where if I want a specific power or ability, I'll just type in the level and role and grab something appropriate and just reflavor. Basically once the DM gets familiar with the system and is comfortable with the adjudication, coming up with stuff off the cuff becomes an easier trend. I just feel I achieved that level of comfort far faster with 4E than I did with 3.5 or Pathfinder. 5E is coming in quite closer to 4E than PF in this regard as well.
After 8 years most people who often DM'ed the system were used to the work of making Monsters and NPCs so it wasn't as long drawn out process. However that doesn't mean easier monster/NPC creation wasn't a desired thing. For me it was less about the time involved vs. the complexity required in making them actually viable in the game. Try making an Orc Barbarian who dual-wields large great axes AND is suitable for a solo encounter vs. 4 PCs and you'll end up making him several levels higher and requiring him to have a plethora of magical gear just so he doesn't go down in the 1st round of combat. No thanks.
I wouldn't call it arbitrary, more like "I don't need a complex formula, or Class XX by level Y to wield two weapons, or Have X, Y, Z feat to make what I want the beast to do work the way I [the DM] intend". The whole 'conform to the everyone uses the same creation process' is one of the worst things I felt was bolted onto 3E and Pathfinder, especially when the system assumes all feats/skills/class options are equal and they're FAR FAR from it.
David Bowles wrote:
I don't think they're asking that of us at all. They're putting out a product that they hope will cater to a multitude of groups for a multitude of reasons. Sure, they'd LOVE for you to abandon Pathfinder because they're competition however I'm certain they assume it's more likely that people will probably end up playing both.
Considering that both systems are pretty different no both mechanics and approach, they fill different niches for style of games off the bat. So for those time when a group is getting new people OR when someone isn't there or for the nights when you've only got a few hours to game and don't want to get into a lengthy campaign, D&D:Next is a great opportunity to indulge in the RPG world without having to put TONS of time in character creations or have fears of being completely over-shadowed by someone's System-Mastery created build.
Ragnarok Aeon wrote:
Please define "really falling behind". What does that even mean? Falling behind what, exactly? Is there some sort of measure PCs must maintain? If you mean losing a few points of DPR or a +1 or +2 to attack.....yeah for a LOT of people that's fine. Not everyone optimizes their character to the 100 degree for efficiency. And the ones that do don't complain about not being immersed.
Ragnarok Aeon wrote:
Did you ever think that the weapon was good simply because the one wielding it was a legend? Though I fail to see how this is relevant to the topic of role-playing?
Ragnarok Aeon wrote:
Again, who's shooting themselves in the foot? And why would they be roflstomped in the game just because of the weapon (and subsequently, the backstory that goes along with it) they chose?
Ragnarok Aeon wrote:
Lol, cripples? So by taking a -5 in DPR and a -1 to attacks (arbitrary numbers for a subjective argument) I'm now a cripple who apparently gets roflstomped because I shot myself in the foot for falling behind some unknown metric scale devised, most likely, from theorycrafting in a white-room by people who more than likely don't even play the game.....
I would say the biggest emphasis of roleplaying in 5e as opposed to 3.x is that the focus in 5e is on actually playing the game, whereas in 3.x, playing the game is a minor addition hastily taped onto the REAL product...a character creation system.
That's a pretty darn subjective statement that is vastly more reflective of the individual player than the actual system, and I say this as someone who enjoys creating NPCs and extra characters for fun. So far I've already created about a dozen PCs with 5e and have only had the opportunity to play the "official" game a few times so far.
Character tweaking, mechanics digging, numbers finangling have ALWAYS been apart of the game, regardless if the system "promotes" it or not.
Southeast Jerome wrote:
The downside is that it becomes less and less important as a tool the higher level you go, penalizing multi-class characters on basic attacks. Cantrips whole point is to be the "go-to" when daily effects are entirely used up OR to be too big of a resource to utilize for the current situation. IF you scale it by caster level (by that particular class or CL overall, based on the Multi-class table) then multiclassing into a non-spellcaster class is always going to be an inferior choice (barring specifics).
So a Barbarian 10 / Cleric 1 gets cantrips. If they're based on the Cleric then it's almost 100% better to NEVER use your turn to cast a Cantrip and instead go with a weapon-based attack. Which begs the question: why are you multiclassing to begin with? Instead, if cantrips are tied to Character level, he can still feel like a cleric like one his peers on the basic level, however they still have LOTS more spells (and of higher level) than him, which separates the distinction.
Some people are fine with this, others (including myself) don't like the penalty. I'm glad cantrips scale with character level instead of caster level. In fact, I'm glad they practically removed Caster Level as a 'thing' for the majority of this edition overall.
5th's seems more....realistic and in that sense, I feel 5E's art is better. I like 5E's Monster Manual better artistically than Pathfinder's Bestiary.
Keeping spellcasting more reined in at the higher levels of play. It's not as balanced as 4E in the higher levels but then again, it wasn't designed to. It took more cues from 3E in this regard however they also lowered the overall amount of spells one can cast above 6th level and didn't give them anyways to increase that number. Also, spellcasting isn't as good because spells don't instantly increase with power as one levels up. You have to invest in which spells will do that.
Then there's Bounded Accuracy. This is REALLY the main reason why I'm looking for 5E to replace most 3E/PF games I run. The fact that modifiers aren't thrown into the stratosphere and lower level monsters say more relevant longer is a huge plus in my book.
Short Rest mechanics, while having the potential for problems, are always better (in my mind) than daily ones. So that a good portion of classes get these is a nice bonus.
Not tying Alignment into the mechanics of the game is pretty much a 100% step in the right direction when compared to Pathfinder as it still uses Alignment for restrictions on things like classes and prestige classes.
Ridding themselves of the difference between "full-round" and "standard" actions. The fact that Fighters in PF who move are reduced to 1 attack is simply terrible. Flat out. Add on the penalty that if they DO stick around and make a full-attack, their attacks get weaker is just more BS thrown on top. 5E gets rid of both these silly restrictions.
The only thing that comes to mind is customization. I'm not a fan of the Multiclass system and I don't like that I can't swap a classes sub-paths around as I level up. In this area I think 3E and Pathfinder do a better job with mechanical representation for unique characters. Plus I hate that all classes get feats at different levels.
Yep. Remove the 3-tierd BAB system for 1 standard, across the board version. Remove the Full-Attack action and allow classes that get multiple attacks to keep them AND move. Remove the moronic restrictions on Two-Weapon Fighting. Remove auto-scaling spell variables. Remove Bonus spells based on higher ability modifier. Give paladins more spells at earlier levels.
I'm not really seeing the repackaged thing with D&D:Next, can you further elaborate?
I see similarities but the numbers and what they actually accomplish with this edition is FAR from what it once was. For some examples:
Feats - WotC introduced this mechanic with 3E and it's continued to now. It has, however, changed significantly with each edition. In 3E it was a way for character to get special non-class "Features" they could do. In a system that's heavily negative (meaning doing anything is often penalized) feats were meant to make your character feel stronger in a certain area. Like Two-Weapon Fighting, for instance, reduced the -6 / -8 penalties to -2/-2 with a light, off-hand weapon. In 4E they weren't so much "You can do X ability now" but more of a "Add X to an ability you have or a class feature you have or X-damage type". In essence, they boosted your overall capability OR gave you outright power increase or higher numbers in a specific area. They also funneled ALL the Multiclassing to this aspect. In 5E, it's completely devoid of character growth as a requirement, instead making it optional. Further, the benefits received are MUCH greater, as many people refer to D&D:Next's feats as Macro-feats because it gives you multiple benefits at once.
Classes - This one too has similarities yet is vastly different from previous editions. Even just looking at the Core rules, each class has a little bit of 3E and 4E thrown in but on a framework that is set FAR below what either edition is expected to be. For example, a 4E Fighter was pretty much expected to have an AC 19 / 20 / 22 progression by 5th level and progressing to 30's and 40's by tier while a 5E Fighter's AC can easily be set at 18 for a GOOD portion of their career IF they didn't receive magical items. And look at spellcasting. Players aren't getting multiple HIGH level spells this time around, topping out at ONE 9th level, regardless of Intelligence modifier. Suffice to say that they've attempt to blend the better parts of 4E and 3E into something similar yet brand new that has it's own identity.
Also, I might add that WotC has tried REALLY hard to get that "vibe" back, making 5E appear like older versions. Personally, I loved 4E (I still thinks it's the best system by far) however I accept that a lot of people were put off by a lot of it, even down to the layout, colors, and interior design of the books. To many, it didn't "feel" like D&D and while it's subjective, it means that if people don't get that vibe then they're less likely to buy it.
So maybe the idea of it being more like previous editions is done by design, because that way when people look at it they'll say "Oh, this is definitely D&D."
Yeah, I heard a lot of that too. Not really sure where the notion came from but LOTS of people were pointing to the Star Wars: Saga rules and Tome of Battle as the building blocks for 4e and I don't refute they drew inspiration from those sourcebooks, a significant portion of the game changed that didn't look like that. I blame the lack of charts and color-coded boxes myself.
Simon Legrande wrote:
Uncomfortable? No. Elicits uncontrollable eye-rolling and face-palming for the over dramatic usage of words? Yes.
Further, it sadly demonstrates the gulf and disparity that fans of a niché hobby face over the most moronic things.
Why is Wotc wasting their time follying up a whole new edition of their game when they should just cave in and market their settings and own adventures. They could at least make some money on the success of their most recently successful edition 3.75.
Probably because there are quite a lot of people who don't play Pathfinder or v3.5 because of how......I'm gonna be nice......unwieldy the system can be, especially at higher levels. And because a LOT of people just won't purchase yet another homebrewed 3rd Edition again. Going outside the Paizo bubble and reading comments on 5E, it's shown me just how far people have come in the last 5 or 6 years in terms of what they want in their systems. I've seen people ride the Pathfinder band-wagon and later accept that the system has most of the flaws of v3.5 while only adding enough bells and whistles to keep people's attention OR because they're sticking with a system they already known vs. a brand new edition with a LOT of different rules and style (ie. 4E) and because it was easier.
Now that 5E is out and it's 1) more streamlined. 2) easier and faster to pick up and play. 3) can be used to convert a LOT of v3.5 and 4E material. 4) has better balance across the board than v3.5 and Pathfinder, I think it's a safe bet that 5E will do fairly well early on. The true telling will be later in the year after or a year after release and how they handle the amount of bloat people are used to coming out. Can they create adventures that are useful and fun? It appears that Ghosts of Dragonspear Castle and the Murder in Baldur's Gate / Icewind Dale / Dead in Thay adventures were quite amusing and fun from people's reactions across the forums.
Or they could just make a better game. 5E seems, on many fronts, to be just that. Considering that I frequent places like theRPGsite, who's extremely.......I'm gonna be nice........one sided in their view of 4E and WotC in general, the amount of support the new version is getting is pretty amazing to witness. Let alone at other places as well.
I think the fact is: People are getting burnt out on the ridiculousness of the 3rd Edition system (and for many others 4E as well). The bloat, the trap options, the moronic levels of numbers and broken combos and page after page after page of options and the HUGE dependence on magical items, and monster stat blocks that fill entire pages, and high level play being completely dominated by spellcasters are just getting on people's nerves. People don't want to see Players dishing out 158 DPR in 1 turn at 11th level. People don't want to see ACs ascending into the 40's or Attack modiiers hitting +30/+25 yadda-yadda. ALL of that is pretty apparent in v3.5 and Pathfinder (and to an extent 4E as well).
30 bonus feats...?????
From the free Basic rules I see the Fighter getting 7 Feat opportunities (which override the option of taking an Ability Score bump).
What are Save Feats? You mean like Lightning Reflexes, Great Fortitude, Iron Will that were in v3.5 and Pathfinder? I don't have the PHB yet so I haven't seen how good the Feats are yet.
Spring Attack was a ridiculously moronic thing to throw in as a feat in v3.5 and PF, as was Shot on the Run. And everyone gets like one bonus action.
As for Monks being "benders" I say FINALLY!! Do you know how difficult it was to make a "Bender" style character in v3.5? I had to create it's OWN separate class because a Multi-class Monk/Magic-User was a useless attempt that ended in frustration. The only thing close was a Fire-Bender with the Swordsage using Desert Wind maneuvers. Earth Benders were "sorta" done with the Swordsage and Stone Dragon / Iron Heart / and Setting Sun maneuvers.
Even 4E was rather "meh" on the whole concept. It took someone building their OWN whole Avatar: The Airbender system to do that.
So I'm not really sure I understand the problem here. You get a total of +6 to your attacks and saves over 20 levels compared to +10/+15/+20 attacks and +12/+6 saves of v3.5 and Pathfinder OR +15 in 4E.
Then you look at feats, of which Pathfinder nets 10 per 20 levels and 4E's 18 over 30 levels. Feats in Next are based on class, of which only the Fighter has the highest with 7 over 20 levels.
I have to assume this is a joke.
Yes, some feats were bad (Toughness, for example). Some feats were meh and some where auto-picked. Yet there were a LOT that were chosen for flavor and fun. As for more options, in 5e its largely allowed due to DM fiat. For example your only cleaving if the DM says so. Your only bull rushing and attacking if the DM allows it.
I really don't have a problem with it. When I play 3e or PF it's obscene the amount of thi.gs that stack and can stay on for a LONG time, spanning multiple encounters even. It was to the point that you really didnt need a Fighter if there was a cleric in the group and wizards / druids were worse.
Besides, buff spells are still good and contribute to the party but don't necessarily make encounters trivial. And they have things like Cantrips to rely on and Clerics can still wade in with mace in hand.
Let me ask, you find a product you like. Do you instantly trust them to continue to make the exact same product forever? I don't think it's about trust, something I generally associate with actual people, I think it's about expectations and disappointment. For some, the direction the game took was a disappointment to them. I severely doubt "trust" was broken. Perhaps people might be more cautious about purchasing products from them OR take a longer in-depth look to what their products do before purchase but that's a stance every consumer should be taking.
Further, 4E had LOADS of changes to try the product before buying it. And the same is true with NEXT. You can easily see the game's direction their taking and either that A) suits your needs or B) it doesn't. It has absolutely zip to do with gaining trust back.
Diffan: While your point is not entirely wrong, it is also quite true that those decisions I paraphrased were a large part of the reason for the edition war. I mean, there would have been an outcry whatever they did, but it wouldn't have become impossible to discuss on any major RPG board for years and years without their ample help.
And yet the "decisions" you paraphrased are basically your negative opinions of the edition and less to do with actual reasons for those changes.
Second, how does ANY of that constitute a trust violation? From my perspective the only thing WotC is at fault for is the taking away of PDFs people bought (though why they weren't saved and stored on a device is beyond me) and falling through with their promises on a VTT and on-line tools. Everything else, no it wasn't a breach of trust. They didnt go in a direction people like and they got mad and complained.
And the edition war continues......
I'd agree with you if it was something every wizard could do or any spellcaster could pick up with a feat. But since is a limited option from one school of magic, I don't see the harm. Every wizard who isn't an Evoker is still limited to picking carefully where to place their AoE spells.
Josh M. wrote:
Haha, not at all. Hell I've been saying that since I opened up the 4E PHB in 08'. It also shows just how important 1st impressions are and how something as simple as layout and colors can skew people's opinions.
Tequila Sunrise wrote:
No problem, they're just things that I've noticed that appear to work in similar fashion to 4E when we were playtesting. But I guess your right in that if somethings are ingrained with the system and if it's harder to remove / rewrite then it's easier to just play something else. Perhaps 5E's mechanics are simpler to remove than previous editions?
• HD healing = Healing Surges.....sorta
• Overnight full healing = 4E style
• Short Rest abilities = Encounter Powers.....again sorta
• At-will spellcasting (Cantrips / Orisons) = At-Will spells
• No Alignment mechanics / restrictions
• No racial ability score penalties
• Shortened Skill list akin to 4E's instead of the vast 3.5 list
• Rogue's Sneak Attack happens without any "sneak" required.
• Paladin smites work against anything (from the playtest anyways).
• Ritual spells = pretty much what 4E did.
In short, many of the 4E-isms have remained but received a "old school" paint job and don't call out game-ist elements like "squares" or "Push, Pull, Slide". Additionally they went back to the older wording for things like adventuring day instead of Encounters.
Most of this I find pretty funny because if someone had just done with with 4E at the onset such as formatted the powers to look like 3.5 spells / Maneuvers ala Tome of Battle instead of the color-coded boxes, removed Squares with Feet, used more traditional / fluid terminology instead of gamer jargon, and made it more clear that powers were subject to DM adjudication then I think 4E would probably still be supported by the fanbase to this day.
It's quite funny to see many 4E-naysayers gush over how great WotC is for bringing D&D back when so many 4E elements have remained on the fundamental level.
Scott Henry wrote:
Has anyone tried it yet? Is it any good vs Pathfinder? I really don't see the point in handing over yet MORE money to Hasbro who is treating D&D like a Wargame and churning out a new edition every few years. I'm sort of sickened by the same people who were so angry about 3.5 and 4th ed so close together who went to Pathfinder who are now turning around and giving money back to this new D&D. Unless its insanely good I don't see why you'd quit Pathfinder and go back to D&D.
Im going to answer your question honestly: because it's different, it scratches an itch neither Pathfinder (and by that extention 3.5) nor 4E can do. It's lighter, less complex, less bloated (numbers wise), less arbitrary, and more open to free-form. Further, I think it has the possibility of being easily portable to other supplements without a lot of work as well as being modular.
Additionally, 4e is no longer supported and I won't spend money on Pathfinder so what's left?
P.H. Dungeon wrote:
I think this is a good analysis. It hits on a lot the thoughts I was having about the new system. The lack of reliance on magic items is a huge plus for me with this system. As a GM I hate feeling like I need to give out stuff like cloaks of resistance, rings of protection, belts of strength etc.. just to allow the characters to supposably keep up with the math of the game.
YES! Magic items should be awe-inspiring. I think with the assumption of magical items being required in the game, even ones with just a +1 attached to them will carry significantly more weight within the world. Also, I think it's important for the DM to build up how important magical items are. The DMG should have a nice segment of including them and the consequences of doing so (in both releative power shift as well as making the PCs bigger targets for people who are now going to crave those magical items).
P.H. Dungeon wrote:
At first I hated it because I felt that I'd always choose a feat and I'd be left out with the ability score bumps but with feat design being "super sized" I feel they're not as necessary. Want to be a good Two-Weapon Fighter? Just take 1 feat and there you are. No more plethora of feat-chains that take 1/4 of your character's progression to achieve just to start playing the sort of character you want.
P.H. Dungeon wrote:
As someone who routinely creates "builds" and then creates a role-play around that, I agree. Another thing is that I already have systems to do the tinkering with, so 5E doesn't really need at address this aspect for me. If I want to get down into the nitty-gritty of Character Optimization then I have v3.5, Pathfinder, and 4E to scratch that itch.
Also, what I'm going to start doing is have every player write down what their character's short term and long term goals are. A Fighter, for example, might have a short term goal of being accepted into the order of Purple Dragons of Cormyr and his longtime goal is to own an estate or castle and land to become a stronger leader within the country. A Rogue's short term goal might be to get into a local thieves guild and his long term goal might be to create multiple safe houses in the city to which he can store all sorts of his weapons, poisons, etc (the latter example reminds me of Brent Week's Night Angel Trilogy ). Basically thinking less about what sort of feats, powers, spells I'm getting next level and more about "I really need X-amount of gold to buy a small apartment so I can run operations from there to blanket this area"
P.H. Dungeon wrote:
While I don't mind the XP progression chart in the basic rules I do remember seeing the DMG as a sort of "Hackers Guide" with lots of alternate tools provided to adjust your campaign accordingly. As for modules and XP, it's been a while since we ran PF but I was under the impression that you gain XP for doing things in the adventure that progress the story (like saving the townsfolk in area B4 will get everyone in the group 400 XP).
The reason for the quick advancement is because the first three levels are largely meant as a tutorial for playing the game. The designers actually went on to say that after playing the game for a while advanced players will most likely start their characters at 3rd level (the point where many classes get their sub-path).
I'm not really sure this post really makes sense with a post you just said in which casters are supposed to be more powerful than martials. If teamwork is required, something I actually agree with, then wouldn't it stand to reason that the characters have some parity and that the strengths of one are more than likely a weakness of another?
And if that's the case then why don't you think 4E achieved this? If you've played 4E then you'd be accustomed to seeing the stark differences in the capabilities of the classes, defined by specific roles they assume. Fighters, for an example, have pretty good crowed control but their damage is rather "meh" when compared to a class like the Rogue or Ranger. A Cleric can't match the Fighter OR Rogue/Ranger for power or damage BUT they desperately need him when monsters of darkness approach or when one of them is gravely injured. The wizard follows as someone who has excellent stopping power of powerful targets AND he can control the areas where battle is joined by area effects. Further, he's great at dealing damage to a group of foes at once. However he's extremely squishy and even a few hits can lay him low, so he needs the Fighter to keep people off his back.
Obviously this is my experience with the game and, for the most part, systems like v3.5 and Pathfinder hold to this model as well for a time. However beginning around 7th level and progressing into the mid- and late-tiered games both v3.5 and Pathfinder put HUGE emphasis on the need for magical aid and assistance at those levels. A party without the use of magic is nearly doomed to fail. However the revers isn't necessarily the truth for earlier levels of the game. A party consisting of a Beguiler (or even an Illusionist mage), Cleric, Druid, and Wizard will easily excel at 1st level and I'd dare say pretty much ROFLstomp most challenges of equal level far into the latter stages of the game.
A group consisting of a Fighter, Rogue, Monk, and Barbarian will have an easy time in the first few levels, probably excelling in combat where our spellcaster party will have to take time and recoup their spells more often. But as the monsters they face gain a significant increase in power (to adjust for the assumption of magic) these characters face a fare greater likely hood of all dying due to a lack of aid.
Case in point, the idea of Teamwork is one that is collectively shared, however is has little bearing of the parity of characters that compose a team or party. Each characters should have some strengths to lend the group and sometimes those strengths are what might carry the whole group through an ordeal. However from my experiences it often falls to the caster to fulfill this roll more often than not at the mid- to later-stages of both v3.5 and Pathfinder.
I'll post here what I posted in the Free PDF thread:
Initial reaction for me was "similar to the playtest with some changes." And for the most part I enjoyed the playtest. I think the true merits of the system is that it doesn't require TONS of rules to make fun and interesting characters. Coming from a mostly 3.5 and 4e perspective I can say I'm glad bloated numbers with dozens of effects all stacked together are mostly gone. Further I think monsters of lower levels will remain somewhat relevant for longer periods and magic isn't an assumed progression a character MUST have to stay relevant. Further, feats are actually worth their salt instead of what they were in 3.5 and 4e.
Some things about the system:
· Ability scores max out at 20. So that fighter character isn't pushing his Strength into the strata sphere. He'll probably start rounding out his lesser stats, which makes ability checks better.
· Ability score bumps can be swapped for feats. This makes obtaining them more significant.
· No bonus spells means that spell slots remain a very potent resource that will most likely be held onto longer for the proverbial "right time". This, I feel, puts more emphasis on dealing with encounters with a level of thoughtfulness instead of just tossing in Fireball at every opportunity.
· less is more approach. With 3.5 (and to a lesser extent 4e) it was an exclusion-based system. Meaning that TONS of mechanical obstacles were fabricated to make attempting them severely difficult except if you had a feat, skills, power, etc. If so, its often a moderate or even easy attempt. In D&D next, it appears that things function about the same and proficiency or a feat give you a minimal boost, but not so much that not having it implies any such attempt is near futile.
All in all, it scratches an itch that neither my 3.5/PF or 4E games appear to do.