Unearthed Arcana returning as a monthly web column

4th Edition


On top of that, we have a full slate of new articles coming up in 2015. We’re starting a series called Unearthed Arcana, a monthly look at the art of tabletop RPG game design featuring insights into our philosophy, and examples of new and variant material to use at your table.

Here's hoping the first several articles are conversion rules for previous editions. I would have loved to see these conversion guides included in the DMG, but I understand why they were left out. An ongoing web series is a good compromise, I think. I'm not holding my breath for a direct Pathfinder -> 5E conversion, but some guidance on adapting 3.5E combined with Paizo's 3.5E -> Pathfinder conversion rules will go a long way toward being able to run PF APs as a 5E campaign.

Honestly, I would love to see these conversion guides be so thorough that they would merit publication as soft-cover splatbooks. While I like 5E better than 3.X/PF/4E there are still a LOT of elements I don't like and I would love to see something like a 64 to 96 page conversion booklet (with minimal artwork) that focuses on making a 5E game "emulate" a 1E game. Comparable books could be released for other editions (2E/3E/PF/4E) as well. Retail those puppies for $19.99 (US) and I would almost certainly pick one up for 1E.

I suspect the edition conversions (if we get them) will be focused on importing older published content into 5E, rather than converting 5E content to work with an older edition. However, if the mechanics are well thought through, it should be pretty straightforward to reverse the process.

I'm not sure either would require a 64 page book, though. Paizo's 3.5->PF conversion guide is only 18 pages, and I feel like a 1E <-> 5E conversion guide would be much less crunchy and need even less space to do the job.

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