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Adjule wrote:

I am sure the AD&D players are probably playing AD&D (1st or 2nd editions) or one of the OSR clones. I am sad that I didn't see mention of the ability to insert THAC0 into 5th edition like I heard they were going to.

I will wait until I can see the book with my own eyes before I trust the word of someone over the internet (sorry internet people). I also really hope that they do have that website column they said they might do in place of Legends and Lore. So long as they are available for free and not behind a paywall, because then I would rather have that in a book (physical preferred, but pdf is fine).

They never said you will be able to play with THAC0, they said that folks who play different editions could sit around the same table and feel that they are playing D&D again and IMXP they succeeded, different players say that 5e feels to them like different editions, from OD&D to 4e.


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For those how aren't sure.

5e D&D will be split into 3 artificial tiers, I say artificial because there aren't realy any firm lines between them.

Basic D&D - This is going to be the most basic version of the game, the simplest character creation rule, only fighter, cleric, wizard and rogue and only humans, elves, dwarves and halfings. No feats, each class will have predetermined subclasses (all rogues will be thieves etc) and probably predetermined backgrounds. On the DM side you will have the most basic rules for exploration, combat and interaction with some magic items and some iconic monsters (orcs, a giant, a huge dragon etc).
All of this will be available for FREE on WotC site.

Standard D&D - This is going to grow directly from the basic game, it will basicaly allow you to add to the basic game as much as you would like, it will include 11 classes and 7 races, with full subclass, feat support and background support on the character sides, on the DM side it will include the entire section of Combat, Exploration and Interaction rules plus the full gamut of monsters for the game. It will come out in stages with the PHB, MM and DMG coming out two months apart in order to give enough time to make sure editing is done right.
Once the MM is out the free Basic D&D PDF will be updated with a Beastiary and once the DMG is out it will be updated with a DM section. (I think that we will end up with 3 different PDF and not one big file).

Advance D&D - This is the D&D bonanza, it's for the DM and groups that want to change their games in a serious way, while the standard game will have dials for lots of stuff, the advance game will be about complete rules modules that either expand or replace existing systems, some of this modules will be in the DMG (we know that the DMG have a section for point based magic system and a section on henchmen and followers) I'd imagine that the DMG will include things like aerial combat and downtime mechanics and we will probably see other things down the road.

The time line for the release of Basic D&D is the PHB parts in July for use with the starter set (the starter set got everything the DM need to know and do to run it, the PHB stuff is for players who want to use their own characters instead of the pregens).
Rest of the stuff will be out when the next books will be out.

This approach got several great things going for it:
A. First it gives a potential consumer several entry points: free, $20 starter set, $29 adventures, $50 PHB, and so on.
B. It clearly allow different groups AND different players to play the same game only with different level of complexity (between players) and gamestyles (between tables) while essentially playing the same game.
C. I might be wrong here but it seems like they are moving the focus from lots of splat books to adventures and maybe module books, this approach will promote a horizontal growth instead of a vertical one.

That's my take on this thing.


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Basicaly, they are going to put basic D&D as a free PDF on their site, it will include Human, Elves, Dwarves and Halfings, and Fighters, Clerics, Wizards and Rogues from levels 1-20.

The classes in the Basic game are going to be the simplest version of them, and it probably won't include feats and will include fixed subclasses.

Later on (in August) they are going to release DM rules and some basic monsters.

All in all, great news, people won't have to buy any of the books to start playing D&D, so that's a good thing IMO.


Goblin Squad Member

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I just want to point out that the OP is mixing strategy and tactics in his analysis.

Orgenized warfare is more a matter of economy than tactics, an orgenized group's, lets call it a state but it doesn't have to be one, ability to arm, train and feed a military force is it ultimate way of winning wars and in order to win wars you need to be able to distrupt it's ability to do so.

The modern view that non state actors can give state actors a run for their money when it comes to war is false, it drawn from the perception that one side is a state and the other is not while in truth they both are states only one side is vastly superior to the other in terms of technology and economy that the other is perceived to be a non state actor.

As time goes, and the ways of waging war becomes more and more sophisticated the reliance on state actors to build, support and maintain any kind of military force expend, not diminish.

The way I see it, in order to visualize how warfare might work in PFO we need to make a distinction between tactics and strategy, micro and macro if you will.

I'm not going to speculate about tactics, we already have a rough idea of what Ryan is thinking and its more a matter of combat mechanics which should be more related to the middleware choice than anything else.

So that's leave the overall strategy, the macro of making war in PFO. Before we are able to visualize that we need to know how robust the economy is. For example, do you need to periodically change equipment due to tear and wear? And if so how often?how many steps does it takes to fashion an item? And how many men hours each step takes?

How big can a settlement gets? And what does it takes to support it? Does it require everyday things like clothes and food? And if so what does it takes to procure those?

What about training? How long does it takes to train a competent military force? Both character and player?

Those are the kind of questions that in my mind, will shape the face of war in PFO, from the top of my head I can think of two historical examples about this, one from our real world and the other from EVE world.

A. By the late medieval times, the common missile weapon in Europe was the crossbow, it replaced the bow not because it was a vastly better weapon, a skilled bowman could fire faster than a crossbow man, it replaced the bow because it was much easier and quicker to train a man to shot a crossbow than a bow, otoh a crossbow was more expansive to manufacture so it was limited only to the more prosperous countries.

B. I think Ryan talked about this before, but back in the days before the dinosaurs, I used to play EVE. And a s a wet behind the ears pilot I joined a corporation and witnessed a paradigm shift from up close.
When I joined EVE, the status que was that the crop with the best and biggest ships would win, even smaller ships like tacklers had to be pimped out and flown by experienced pilots due to the fact that a new pilot can't use t2 stuff. I was a member of a low sec mining corp, when I joined we had around 50 members and the corp was very orgenized and lead by a couple of guys who played from day one, we had orgenized mining events that netted us personally tons of money and the corp much more. Shortly before I joined the corp was soundly defeated and forced to pay "protection money" to another corp, we just didn't had enough experience combat pilots like the other guys had.
And then came the goons. You see the goons had lots of noob players, most of them couldn't even fly a cruiser, let alone battleships, so they didn't, instead they related on Zerg tactics utilizing their superb organization they cranked out cheap t1 ships by the dozens and stockpiled them near their fronts for quick and easy rearment, sacrificing dozens of ships for an enemy ship.
My corp. witnessing that (from far far away) decided to copy the goons tactics, we went on a recruitment frenzy doubling our numbers and adding some good manufacturers and started stockpiling cheap t1 ships and having mandatory training sessions for all members, when we next were attacked we managed to sworn the opposition and prevail.

The thing is that EVE warfare experience a paradigm shift due to how the game economies worked, the game has reached the point that an orgenized group could manufacture enough cheap and easy to use weapons to pose a credible threat to the older way of doing things. That what's I'd like to see in PFO.


P.s OMG! Wall of text cries you for gazillion points of damage

Goblin Squad Member

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Nukruh wrote:


Mate, I was referring to your point about real world armies, MMOs are a different thing altogether.

Your pharagraph about your exploits in WAR (excellent game played it for two years) is irrelevant to what I said.

As for PFO, I would like if instead of having superficial different mechanics for mass combat the game will have some logical ones.

For example, let's take magic, one of the main problems with magic on the fantasy battlefield is the fact that it makes close formations a death trap, one good blast from any number of spells (fireball, lighting bolt, etc etc) will kill a lot of troops and disrupt unit cohesion, but what if instead of saying that being in a unit will grant you medical resistance (which is irrational) it will be much easier for spell casters to ward big units from magical effects than individuals.

There could be a circle of protection spell that could be cast in specialy made standard or flags so you will only have to cast that spell once, it would act like a shield against medical attacks with recharge rates and max HP etc.

My point is that mass combat shouldn't be divorced from the lore and roots of PF and DnD. I would love it if a wizard could learn and train more soldiery spells and skills and having a squad of wizards being able to form a circle and act as an artillery and have magical duels with the other side magic users.