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Monte Leaves, Playtesting Begins


D&D 4th Edition (and Beyond)

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Taldor RPG Superstar 2010 Top 16, 2011 Top 32

Skeld wrote:


The fact that these two things happened so close together makes me wonder if Monte had been fighting a losing battle with "corporate" over going to a public playtest with a product that he isn't comfortable with or doesn't think is going the right direction or whatever. If that were the case, he voluntarily canceled his contract with WOTC just before they go to playtest as a way of silently saying that he's not involved with this decision.

-Skeld

I actually wonder if the "public playtest" was not actually a playtest at all. I think Hasbro is pushing hard for a Christmas release to get the sales boost and this "public playtest" is a sham. Monte left because they promised a playtest and what they're delivering is the last version of the game. The game has already gone to print for a holiday 2012 release and this playtest has no effect on the printed released. Of course, since they keep saying it's modular, they can always print a "new module" with all the playtest feedback included later. Or not, if the sales are doing okay without it.

Either way, I am very thankful to have a game that is thriving and that I enjoy playing, so 5e isn't really for me anyway.


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Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Terquem wrote:
My understanding is that he finally felt it was time to abandon the D&D 5e developement when he could not convince the Hasbro corporation office that it was a bad idea to include a "pop-o-matic" with each boxed Dungeons & Dragons adventure.

I would LOVE a d20 pop-o-matic.


I would totally use a Pop-o-matic that had all seven basic dice in it, and another with five d6. In fact if there was a way to custom order pop-o-matics with dice preferences in them, that company would make a ton, but sadly the pop-o-matic is patended.

President, Jon Brazer Enterprises

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Marc Radle wrote:

I also find it interesting that Monte said:

"However, I want to take this time to stress that my differences were not with my fellow designers, Rob Schwalb and Bruce Cordell."

Notice that he did not include Mearls in his list of fellow designers he had no differences with. Not sure if that means anything, but it was certainly ... interesting ...

Mearls was considered a designer too, wasn't he?

It wasn't Mearls, or anyone on the design team.

Andoran

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Bill,

Here you go.

You're welcome. :)

Lantern Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Skeld wrote:
cibet44 wrote:
It seems very odd to announce both the playtest and Montes departure on the same day.

The fact that these two things happened so close together makes me wonder if Monte had been fighting a losing battle with "corporate" over going to a public playtest with a product that he isn't comfortable with or doesn't think is going the right direction or whatever. If that were the case, he voluntarily canceled his contract with WOTC just before they go to playtest as a way of silently saying that he's not involved with this decision.

-Skeld

Rumor has it he tried to get his authorship credit changed to Cordwainer Bird. :)

Sczarni

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
cibet44 wrote:
Steve Geddes wrote:
cibet44 wrote:
The re-release of the WoTC 3.5 books is also a curious move, I wonder if it's related to his departure.

What boo

ks are they rereleasing? Is it print or just PDFs?

The books with erratta applied.

Details: http://greyhawkgrognard.blogspot.com/2012/04/more-wotc-reprints-35-this-tim e-wtf.html?m=1

Is that confirmed by WotC, or is it just based on the B&N listing? Until I hear something from WotC, I don't think it should be given any credence. I wouldn't be surprised if it were just an error on B&N's part.

Osirion

Lots of speculation, but that's just a sign that people cared.

For me, I'm not too surprised. Monte has a habit of getting bored with projects and moving on to something else.


I was only looking at 5e, because Monte was helping to develop it. I thought "maybe WoTC realized they screwed up and are hiring back Monte to fix it".

After reading why he quit, I see it's the same ole, same ole with WoTC corporate.

They haven't learned. They haven't grown. They're pulling the same mistakes of corporate versus creative, that other designers (and even video game companies) have had to put up with from them.

So I just decided I'd stick with Pathfinder; and hope that Monte follows suit!

Shadow Lodge

Wait...are 3.5E books really being re-released? Where can I read more?


The only indication anyone has cited of a 3.5 reprint is a placeholder URL on Barnes & Noble's website for the PHB and DMG. I'm still skeptical at this point.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32, 2010 Top 8

Jal Dorak wrote:

Lots of speculation, but that's just a sign that people cared.

For me, I'm not too surprised. Monte has a habit of getting bored with projects and moving on to something else.

SQUIRREL!


Zarathos wrote:


Also, on the re-release of the 3.5e core set. I have the 2006 reprinting in black leather. Was there any additional errata past this reprinting that might be included in the re-release?

The final 3.5 FAQ by WotC is dated for 6/30/08, but I am not sure if anything in it for the PHB and DMG is from after the final printing of those books. As for a final errata document for 3.5, I am not sure when that would have been published, but I do not think I have it.

Andoran

hogarth wrote:
houstonderek wrote:
There were a ton of games that were around by 1980, but most were pretty niche, really. Runequest, Traveller, Call of Cthulhu, Champions, 007, the WEG products (Star Wars d6, Paranoia, etc) and some others were solid and had followings, but AD&D and BECMI dwarfed them in popularity.
That list is really more like 1987 than 1980, for what it's worth.

Ok, Runequest, Traveller, Champions and Call of Cthulhu were all out by '81, and Moldvay basic as well (yeah, I know BECMI technically only refers to Mentzer's rewrite of the D&D line, but throw me a bone here). Ok, WEG didn't release Paranoia until '84. 007 came out in '83.

I think the original Arms Law, Spell Law, Claw Law and all of that (what eventually became Rolemaster) were out by '80 or '81 as well.


Obirandiath wrote:
It's funny, if you read through the comments posted below the public playtest announcement on WotC's blog, it doesn't take long at all for the conversation to deteriorate into a battle between the pro-4E's and the anti-4E's. Traditionalists want to see a return to the 3E days, or even the 2E days. Newer players like to insist the game isn't a paper MMO and want 5E to be like 4E but without the junk leftover from 3.5. The only thing I see clearly in all of those comments is that there is a gulf in the RPG community that one game system cannot fill.

I actually do think this is significant, in that bridging these groups was a central aim behind 5e that they were very open about.


Now if we could only find a way to re unite the paint ball and laser tag people, wow what a division that was, remember?


I don't think there is a snowballs chance in hell that 5Es OGL is anywhere remotely close to 3Es. It's no secret Monte is amicable with Paizo... he wrote the Foreword for the Core Rules book.

It'd be setting WotC 5E up for failure. Not that it needs a new edition, but Paizo could pick him up, release it's own version to compete and possibly put the nail in the coffin of WotCs DnD credibility.

I'm sure it was very much a "coporate vs creative" issue. As good as the intentions of the dev team may be, Hasbro is only interested in making a profit. It has to be a good product but if Monte didn't think it was ready and he had invested serious time into this, I'd probably ask to be let go too. Hasbro may be settling with a good enough instead of a fantastic because of their release timeline.

Regardless of all the speculation, we know that they have BEEN playtesting for over a year. It could simply be that Monte felt he was at a place where he could take on something else and stay with WotC and with WotC not wanting to allow him that freedom.


Obakararuir wrote:
I'm sure it was very much a "coporate vs creative" issue.

My money's on this -- he said he didn't have issues with his fellow designers, and this still leaves it open for "corporate." He and WoTC both know that his departure casts a pall over the final product, and he could have dispelled any speculation by saying it was purely due to personal or financial considerations. Saying "difference of opinion" strongly suggests otherwise.

I also agree with what someone said above about there being a link between his leaving and the public playtest starting soon after. By the time the playtest begins, WoTC will have already committed to a general design philosophy/approach to the system. Monte has to protect his own personal "brand" and wants to put some distance between himself and the product right before showtime.

Of course, this is all just my personal opinion, and we likely will not a get a definitive answer.

Osirion

I also kind of got the feeling that perhaps WotC is emphasizing the results of messageboard and poll feedback, which may be skewed.

Andoran

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Its interesting to see how many have already declared the end of 5E just before Monte left. how about we actually read the finished product first then pass judgment. Do you know how many times i heard the same thing said about Pathfinder before it was released. So Monte left big deal. We have other designers working on 5E and maybe just maybe with or without Monte they may make a great product. And one that is also profitable. As if that is a bad thing (rolls eyes). It was like watching a news reprt when the news broke. "News flash monte leaves 5E design team. New edition is doomed!. Instances of gastro on the rise! Pathfinder is doomed!"

Taldor RPG Superstar 2010 Top 16, 2011 Top 32

6 people marked this as a favorite.

Memorax: I don't think anyone seriously thinks 5e is doomed. However, for a lot of people the inclusion of Monte Cook was an olive branch to those of us who felt slighted by the marketing of 4th edition. I think what you're seeing is a lot of people who have been burned by Wizards before saying 'I was interested while they had Monte Cook on board, because I like his past work; now what interest I had is gone.' Plus, before Pathfinder came out, we had the benefit of an actual open playtest to base opinion upon. Until we can see this open playtest of Wizards, the opinion of 5e on these boards (where a lot of us took shelter after the horrid 4e marketing campaign) will be less than exciting. Wizards spent all of the goodwill it had with me; if it wants any back, it's going to have to mount some truly Herculean efforts to win back my dollar.

Osirion

1 person marked this as a favorite.
James Martin wrote:
Memorax: I don't think anyone seriously thinks 5e is doomed. However, for a lot of people the inclusion of Monte Cook was an olive branch to those of us who felt slighted by the marketing of 4th edition. I think what you're seeing is a lot of people who have been burned by Wizards before saying 'I was interested while they had Monte Cook on board, because I like his past work; now what interest I had is gone.' Plus, before Pathfinder came out, we had the benefit of an actual open playtest to base opinion upon. Until we can see this open playtest of Wizards, the opinion of 5e on these boards (where a lot of us took shelter after the horrid 4e marketing campaign) will be less than exciting. Wizards spent all of the goodwill it had with me; if it wants any back, it's going to have to mount some truly Herculean efforts to win back my dollar.

Exactly, it's sort of like if when Nixon went to China he suddenly said "Oh, by the way, Kissinger quit yesterday. Not sure why, but don't worry it will be fine!"


I think Monte has gone back to I.C.E to revamp Rolemaster & then he is going to kick Cubical 7 in the sack and bring back MERP.

Andoran

I get and understand being careful about 5E. Nor am I saying not to be careful. When someone accuses of Woc of wanitng only profit well every other company non-rpg or rpg including this one want to make a profit. Almost like wanting to make a profit is a bad thing or shocked that it happens. Or that without Monte 5E is doomed, It maybe doomed it may not. We don't know. Speculation is all well and good and healthy in some cases. Yet when it's all doom and gloom espcially when we don't even have a playtest doucment is to me being negatvie for the sake of being negative.

If myself or anyone else would have been as negative towards PF the boards would have ripped us a new one. As for the 4E marketing yes it was annoying and they could have handled it better yet to be blunt it's time gamrs get over it. Unless the hate for the 4E marketing campaign provides someone with some sort of concrete benefit such as paying bills or the rent well it just so many large chips on shoulders. I respect not like the marketing yet if one is still thinking aboout years after the fact you need to move on imo. Dwelling on something for so long is not healthy.

That being said if they do screw up 5E and I acknowledge they might. I will be the first to admit that they did. I may still buy it and promote if it's not a complete disasater may pick it up. A few things I also dislike about PF yet I still buy the books and promote the rpg. I rather not see negative stuff about 5E for the sake of posting negagive stuff.

Taldor

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Memorax I just want to re-iterate what some of us have been saying. 5E is not doomed but with Monte leaving some of us have lost confidence or interest in 5E. Sorry if that seems negative to you but this news just cant be ignored by everyone. On the other hand there has been much jubilation at the fact that Monte is off the team. Is that justified? Is that being positive for the sake of being positive? To me it just sounds like another opinion and I don't see anything wrong with that.


Sometimes people put too much value into names. I remember when the previews started in Dragon Magazine for 3rd edition and I remember when the previews started for 4th edition. I did not know the names of every designer working on each edition, and I still don't, I just cared if I liked the stuff they were sharing. I was cautiously optimistic about both of those editions as more was shown of each. I will be the same way with with 5th/Next, even if the team making it was full of previously unpublished designers. In RPG design, new blood is always needed and sometimes the old blood loses it's edge.


Honestly for me its not the name so much, while I love Monte's work with malhavoc (and am even in the midst of planing an arcana evolved game), his insistence that vancian spell casting was central to DnD grated on me.

My concern is that management seems to be mucking about with the creative/design folks. No good ever comes of this. None.


Paizo Superscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber

If Razor Coast had had some management staff, things would have gone much better for that endeavor.

A decent executive is a plus, not a minus and that will involve "mucking about" with the creative/design folks in any decently run company.

Whether WotC's management overstepped the line is impossible to tell from "I have differences with WoTC management". Maybe they were wandering in where they shouldnt have been, maybe he was wandering where he shouldnt have been. Who can tell from such scant information?

Qadira

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Modules Subscriber
Pan wrote:
Memorax I just want to re-iterate what some of us have been saying. 5E is not doomed but with Monte leaving some of us have lost confidence or interest in 5E. Sorry if that seems negative to you but this news just cant be ignored by everyone. On the other hand there has been much jubilation at the fact that Monte is off the team. Is that justified? Is that being positive for the sake of being positive? To me it just sounds like another opinion and I don't see anything wrong with that.

Like Monte is the only man who can "save" D&D. That's just silly. Is D&D "over" if Monte decides to walk away? He wasn't even the only guy working on 3e, and if you recall that edition needed a revamp into 3.5 (not done by Monte) to deal with the issues he (and the others who designed 3.0) missed. I'm sure he's very talented and good at what he does but it seems to me his work on settings and adventures (Ptolus, Planescape) significantly outstrips his mechanical stuff. D&D didn't expire with Gygax so I don't really see why one guy is suddenly such a deal-breaker.

Qadira

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Modules Subscriber
Steve Geddes wrote:

If Razor Coast had had some management staff, things would have gone much better for that endeavor.

A decent executive is a plus, not a minus and that will involve "mucking about" with the creative/design folks in any decently run company.

Whether WotC's management overstepped the line is impossible to tell from "I have differences with WoTC management". Maybe they were wandering in where they shouldnt have been, maybe he was wandering where he shouldnt have been. Who can tell from such scant information?

Absolutely. We don't know what happened with Monte yet but this could just be prima donna behaviour. Don't know the guy, don't know if that is fair. But management is necessary, and in a commercial enterprise the talent needs to be managed. Maybe Monte just wasn't used to not being his own boss.


The 8th Dwarf wrote:

I think Monte has gone back to I.C.E to revamp Rolemaster & then he is going to kick Cubical 7 in the sack and bring back MERP.

That's Cubicle 7. And actually, I could see Monte Cook believing MERP delivers a better Tolkien RPG than The One Ring. I've disagreed with nearly everything else he's done with rules, after all.


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Bluenose wrote:
The 8th Dwarf wrote:

I think Monte has gone back to I.C.E to revamp Rolemaster & then he is going to kick Cubical 7 in the sack and bring back MERP.

That's Cubicle 7. And actually, I could see Monte Cook believing MERP delivers a better Tolkien RPG than The One Ring. I've disagreed with nearly everything else he's done with rules, after all.

The perils of posting on the boards with the iPhone.

Even if you don't like the system the source books for MERP were wonderful.

D20 is just Rolemaster divided by 5, the magic system dumbed down and all the interesting stuff taken out.


Hiya.

Damn. My ears pearked up when I found out Monte was one of the designers for 5e. I loved what he did with his Diamond Throne and Arcana Evolved stuff (for the most part, anyway). His preferences in RPG's are mostly along the same lines as my own, so I had high-hopes for 5e at least having a chance of being one of the games we play. But now, with him leaving abruptly...I just don't know. The other guys on the design team don't exactly fill me with hope. No offence to their skill, but I just don't get that "old school" vibe comming from them. They seem to have that "if it's new, it must be better!" mentality...meaning that if it isn't new, then it's old, and if it's old, it's not good, so don't do it.

I now have a sinking feeling that 5e will start to incorporate more and more of the 4e way of thinking into it's core design...and that means I'm out. I'm still kind of hopeing against hope that I'm wrong and 5e rawks on toast, but with Monte leaving...it's a pretty slim bit of hope. *sigh*

^_^

Paul L. Ming


I doubt the designers are going to redesign the core of the game in one month editing out all of Monte's contributions before the play test... If they do so during the public play testing against the input of the play testers then the game probably deserves to bomb.

I hope it doesn't.


Just going to point out that this could be completely non-RPG related. Perhaps Monte's contract called for WotC to carry him on their health benefits and the company benefits managers decided that the terms did not apply to his spouse/kids. Not saying that's what happened, but I am pointing out there are a huge number of possible reasons for Monte to leave that have nothing to do with the design of 5e.


pming wrote:
The other guys on the design team don't exactly fill me with hope. No offence to their skill, but I just don't get that "old school" vibe comming from them. They seem to have that "if it's new, it must be better!" mentality...meaning that if it isn't new, then it's old, and if it's old, it's not good, so don't do it.

What exactly is "Old School" about Monte Cook's D&D work? I mean, Planescape is an interesting setting but hardly Old School. 3e is not exactly close to the OSR style. Ptolus, perhaps?


Can you hear that near head splitting sound?

That's the sound of a dozen WotC Spin Doctors wincing and grinding their teeth in unison.

Edit: Some interesting speculation from Greyhawk Grognard.

Andoran

Aubrey the Malformed wrote:
Steve Geddes wrote:

If Razor Coast had had some management staff, things would have gone much better for that endeavor.

A decent executive is a plus, not a minus and that will involve "mucking about" with the creative/design folks in any decently run company.

Whether WotC's management overstepped the line is impossible to tell from "I have differences with WoTC management". Maybe they were wandering in where they shouldnt have been, maybe he was wandering where he shouldnt have been. Who can tell from such scant information?

Absolutely. We don't know what happened with Monte yet but this could just be prima donna behaviour. Don't know the guy, don't know if that is fair. But management is necessary, and in a commercial enterprise the talent needs to be managed. Maybe Monte just wasn't used to not being his own boss.

Or maybe, since he was brought in to give credibility to the process, his leaving because he isn't pleased with the process or product...

Who at WoTC has a connection to the Dungeons and Dragons we played at this point?

I don't believe anyone goes back to classic DnD, and with Skip Williams, Johnathan Tweet, and Monte all out, the devs of 3.5 are out.

So at this point, they are a purchased brand with little to no connection to the product which grew the brand.

Why be loyal to a label if the label is no longer on the product that earned your loyalty?


Paizo Superscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber
ciretose wrote:
Aubrey the Malformed wrote:
Steve Geddes wrote:

If Razor Coast had had some management staff, things would have gone much better for that endeavor.

A decent executive is a plus, not a minus and that will involve "mucking about" with the creative/design folks in any decently run company.

Whether WotC's management overstepped the line is impossible to tell from "I have differences with WoTC management". Maybe they were wandering in where they shouldnt have been, maybe he was wandering where he shouldnt have been. Who can tell from such scant information?

Absolutely. We don't know what happened with Monte yet but this could just be prima donna behaviour. Don't know the guy, don't know if that is fair. But management is necessary, and in a commercial enterprise the talent needs to be managed. Maybe Monte just wasn't used to not being his own boss.

Or maybe, since he was brought in to give credibility to the process, his leaving because he isn't pleased with the process or product...

Maybe.

It doesn't change the fact that decent management is a good and necessary thing, which was the point.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

It's a shame that Monte has left, but I'm still interested in seeing the game and he'll have likely left some kind of mark on the design by now anyway.

ciretose wrote:

I don't believe anyone goes back to classic DnD, and with Skip Williams, Johnathan Tweet, and Monte all out, the devs of 3.5 are out.

So at this point, they are a purchased brand with little to no connection to the product which grew the brand.

Why be loyal to a label if the label is no longer on the product that earned your loyalty?

I don't know when you're drawing the 'classic D&D' line but there are still a decent amount of long serving staff at Wizards, though whether you're personally a fan of those people or not is obviously a personal opinion. Rich Baker, Bruce Cordell, James Wyatt, Miranda Horner, Kim Mohan (about as 'classic' of an editor as you can get for D&D), Chris Perkins and I'm sure others have been involved in the game on one level or another from before 3rd edition.

Andoran

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

So the public playtest starts next month with a projected Sept release? That means WOTC won't have time to change anything from playtest. Great move. At least Paizo took players input.


CapeCodRPGer wrote:
So the public playtest starts next month with a projected Sept release?

Where did you read about a September 2012 release? I would have guessed that it would come out at Gen Con 2013.


Paizo Superscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber

There has been some speculation that Barnes & noble's listing of the 3.5 core books with errata in September is, in fact, them screwing up and per announcing the launch date for D&D next.

There's a greyhawkgrognard thread linked 5 posts above yours. I think that's the main "source".


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memorax wrote:
I get and understand being careful about 5E. Nor am I saying not to be careful. When someone accuses of Woc of wanitng only profit well every other company non-rpg or rpg including this one want to make a profit. Almost like wanting to make a profit is a bad thing or shocked that it happens. Or that without Monte 5E is doomed, It maybe doomed it may not. We don't know. Speculation is all well and good and healthy in some cases. Yet when it's all doom and gloom especially when we don't even have a playtest document is to me being negative for the sake of being negative.

Most level-headed people don't think making a profit off selling games is a bad thing - we want the companies we like to profit, so they keep making more great stuff.

What people do object to, in this industry as in any other, is making a profit not by producing a quality product, but by orchestrating events to artificially create sales without delivering a product of substantial quality.

Let me give you a non-gaming related example: my company sells assistive technology to disabled and elderly individuals. When a sales call is placed to us, the priority for our representatives should be, "What product best fits this person's needs? What will make their day to day living as easy and normal as possible compared to an able-bodied person's?" If we as a company remain focused on that goal, we develop trust by delivering positive results. That trust results in good word-of-mouth reputation for our brand, which in turn means more opportunities to deliver the right product at a profitable price point.

But when those goals become compromised by other agendas, such as the relative commission earned off of an item, or a tracking system that penalizes good sales representatives for delivering the best service at the expense of the more lucrative sale, you begin to lose people's trust. You lose, first, the trust of your employees, because they're being asked to do something that isn't good for the customer they allegedly serve in order to keep their job - and then you lose the trust of your customer, who nine times out of ten will realize, even if it's after the fact, that you sold them not what they needed, but what was most profitable for you. That leads to bad word-of-mouth reputation and, in the long run, decreased conversions and missed sales opportunities.

The relative merits and flaws of 4th Edition D&D are open for debate, but the marketing techniques used to promote it had more in common with a company looking for the quick and easy sale than with a company interested in giving its customers the best product they could. That's not to say that the designers and developers had an ulterior agenda - I don't think they did. But there are a lot of smart people in business today who think it's more important to game the system for short-term gain and grab all the profit they can this quarter, or this year, than to develop a sustained relationship of trust with their customer base and enjoy steady long-term growth as a result. I don't think Hasbro is an exception to this rule. And when you look at the entire picture surrounding that product launch - assaults on principles of open game design, cessation of digital product sales, opaque and oblique channels of communication between the company and its fan base, denigration of established product - it does begin to look as if the emphasis was less on creating a great product and more on engineering a perfect storm in hopes that the waves would wash ashore big profits.

So, with all that in mind, when Wizards says they want to do open playtesting and involve the community and reunite the fan base, I'm all for that. But the process by which they've gone about it is more or less the same thing we saw before up to this point - there's little to no transparency on timelines, their lead designer has left the fold, and they're not doing much of anything to dispel the perception that this playtest phase is anything more than lip service. I want to give them the benefit of the doubt and look at the development of this game in the most positive possible light, but I also don't want to be fooled again.

The really bad part about all this is that if WotC was as straightforward with its customers about their plans going forward as Paizo typically is, I don't think half of these conversations would even be going on right now.

This is also the reason, incidentally, that gamers should support good companies like Troll Lord Games or Paizo that are transparent about what they're developing and eager to respond to customer desires. If the little "good" guys start making more money than the big "bad" ones, eventually that will cause the industry as a whole to shift its priorities back to customer satisfaction and away from marketing trickery.

Cheliax

Aubrey the Malformed wrote:
Pan wrote:
Memorax I just want to re-iterate what some of us have been saying. 5E is not doomed but with Monte leaving some of us have lost confidence or interest in 5E. Sorry if that seems negative to you but this news just cant be ignored by everyone. On the other hand there has been much jubilation at the fact that Monte is off the team. Is that justified? Is that being positive for the sake of being positive? To me it just sounds like another opinion and I don't see anything wrong with that.
Like Monte is the only man who can "save" D&D. That's just silly. Is D&D "over" if Monte decides to walk away? He wasn't even the only guy working on 3e, and if you recall that edition needed a revamp into 3.5 (not done by Monte) to deal with the issues he (and the others who designed 3.0) missed. I'm sure he's very talented and good at what he does but it seems to me his work on settings and adventures (Ptolus, Planescape) significantly outstrips his mechanical stuff. D&D didn't expire with Gygax so I don't really see why one guy is suddenly such a deal-breaker.

It's not so much as Monte would "save" 5E, but he was the only well known designer on the team that didn't work on a system that completely turned D&D upside down (4E) and caused a huge rift in the community. The concern is that he was the only one looking at things from a 3E perspective and hopefully could keep the team from just trying to pat themselves on the back and release a tweaked 4E as 5E. That may not be fair, but that is a legitimate concern for those not enthused by 4E's mechanics.

Cheliax

Berik wrote:

It's a shame that Monte has left, but I'm still interested in seeing the game and he'll have likely left some kind of mark on the design by now anyway.

ciretose wrote:

I don't believe anyone goes back to classic DnD, and with Skip Williams, Johnathan Tweet, and Monte all out, the devs of 3.5 are out.

So at this point, they are a purchased brand with little to no connection to the product which grew the brand.

Why be loyal to a label if the label is no longer on the product that earned your loyalty?

I don't know when you're drawing the 'classic D&D' line but there are still a decent amount of long serving staff at Wizards, though whether you're personally a fan of those people or not is obviously a personal opinion. Rich Baker, Bruce Cordell, James Wyatt, Miranda Horner, Kim Mohan (about as 'classic' of an editor as you can get for D&D), Chris Perkins and I'm sure others have been involved in the game on one level or another from before 3rd edition.

Well Richard Baker was canned in November and James Wyatt works on board games now. Bruce is probably the only one close to old school that's actually working on the design of 5E.

Cheliax

Well said PowerWord Unzip!


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I played in a 5e playtest Bruce ran at D&DXP this year. I can verify that he has old-school down.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32, 2010 Top 8

jreyst wrote:
I played in a 5e playtest Bruce ran at D&DXP this year. I can verify that he has old-school down.

Good to hear. Bruce Cordell has some hits (XPH*) and misses ((In)Complete Psionic) for me to trust blindly.

*

Spoiler:
I don't include the original 3/x Psionic handbook, it's my understanding the final product wasn't playtested and took notes from several iterations of play testing.

Andoran

1 person marked this as a favorite.

I get what you are saying Power Word Unzip. I also agree with some of it. Yet at the same tinme without even seeing the finsihed product let alone part of the product posters are automatically assuming it will fail. I respect monte like some of his work yet I doubt very highly that without him 5E will fail. Really hope Paizo never highers the guy. He seem to cause more PR problems then increasing PR imo. Not to mention what happens if they do and a month or year down the line he gets bored and wants to leave.

I will be honest I'm not sure if they can do what they set up to do in terms of goals with 5E. It's an admirable goal to try and reunite the fanbase yet with 4 versions of D&D unless it's a modular version that allows all version to be played. Or at the very least incorprate whatever rules you want to include. And yes their marketing was horrible yet it's not the only compay to do so. Anyone remember New Coke and how blind Coca-cola was to the negative feedback that caused. It seems like wotc and only Wotc was the only company that made such a bad pR mistake. It happens a lot and yes it's annoying yet really to dwell on the marketing of a product that is years old at this point is silly to say the least. I hated the ads too yet I'm not thinking ir bring them up all the time. Just so many more imorptant things to worry about. There is a reason why even with an increase in popularity of geek culture that rpgers are still looked down upon. Nor do I blame poeple for doing so. When you worry about things that happens years past all the time well your asking not to be taken seriously by anyone. Is that harsh maybe but sometimes I feel ashamed and embrassed to be part of the community and the hobby.

I also agree that Wotc needs to come up with an actual playtest and soon. If they want to implemt damage contril because of Monte lack of professionalism. sorry but all he had to do was say "I'm leaving because of certain reason that you don't need to know about". Instead of the whole "I have issues with the company but not the developers". Saying that is of course not going to cause any controversy. So if they are smart and because Monte has forced their hand they need to do an acutal playtest. That being said a playtest may not change anything at all. Which may get gamers accusing Wotc playtest being a sham as many think and still think Paizo playtest was a sham.

As for good or bad companies I just find that silly. All want to release a qulaity product and make a profit. Any developer who says otherwise is trying to make points with the fans while trying to look good. Anyone else thinks otherwise is being delibrately purposefully naive. No one starts a company to not make i profitable and not to make a quality product. Opinions may say otherwise yet opionion is not a fact and never will be. Every rpg company unless they murdered your favoirte puppy or burned your house down should be supported imo. The hobby is not doing as well or as strong as it was. If the big companies fail the small ones imo will follow right after.

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