Tuesday, May 20, 2014

More "Mike Mearls Magic Pearls" - Tweets - Turning Board Game Geeks "Geekier"

Okay, so it's pretty much a "remedial" gaming package. Which is okay. But if this means Next will suffer from "boardgamism" like 4e, I'm not looking forward to the future.

Is this an as yet unnamed release, the new DDI, or something even more sinister?


  1. When I was introduced to D&D from board games "It was sit at the table and d20". Once I got the little brown books from Lake Geneva two weeks later I was off and DMing. Didn't seem to be a lot of training editions required. Of course I had to weather the slow release of AD&D, Monster Manual one year, Players Handbook the next year, and finally the Dungeon Masters guide the year after that. Of course i was experienced "roll you own rules" DM by then so it didn't phase me much. Most editions from 2nd on are almost completely playable with only the Players Handbook. Monsters you just borrow from those tomes you collected in the last edition, and once they moved the magic items into the Players guide, there was no need to ever crack the Dungeon Masters guide again. I will probably spring for all three ( skipping the starter set as usual), but just to keep my Role Playing Game collection complete. Who knows, if they come up with a group activity closer to Living Forgotten Realms than their lame Wednesday night thing I might even play it.I can't stand playing D&D for only an hour or so, and find the $30ish pricing on their kits outrageous, after all I balked at the $4 a pop pathfinder kits. When you can roll you own paying good money for someone else's slow reveal plot hammer railroad doesn't seem like a good deal. At least with LFR 4th edition was sufficiently "board gamey" one could make fun of the plot and not miss much. I however preferred my own MYREs with two solid fights and just the barest wisp of a plot to get you an action point for round two. Well I have ranted on enough for one night, have to save the rest for Fridays blog post.

  2. I'm really excited for 5E and pre-ordered the Starter Set, but someone please make Mike stop tweeting and write a real sentence or two explaining stuff. Please!!!!

  3. I don't see what there is to explain.

    It's a starter set with pregens and an adventure for people just getting into D&D.

    Then it points you to the books for further growth.

    The expectation that a 16 dollar box is gonna be the old Basic box is a little off.

    I also think they are trying to avoid having a basic game and an Advance, which is why the Starter is just an intro.

    1. I think it needs to be more than that.

      The Pathfinder beginner box has rules for creating characters and your own adventures, and is $26 on Amazon. Plus free simple expansions and adventures on their website.

      Also how are you going to carry on after playing the adventure? It will be 3 months before all the core books are out.

      For me this has changed from a must have to a not worth it.

    2. Not only does this boxed set have to compete against Paizo's more versatile Beginner Box, it has to compete with dndclassics.com which is a huge reminder of the time when you could get a complete set of D&D rules in 64 pages oh so long ago.

      The point is not the boxed set, anyway: we all get that it's a module with pregens and some learning tools to teach the rules. What we don't get is Mike's insufferable tweets alluding to some other "thing" that happens after the Starter but before the PHB. Look...I'm a pro WotC, pro 5E guy, but Twitter is not something Mike Mearls should be allowed to use at this point. We're too close to this to be so cryptic.

    3. I'm guessing it's a major online component for char gen and continuing adventures.

      They did say that this edition would be applied across multiple forms of media.

      Honestly, the char gen has so many options, I don't know how you would put it into a starter box. Well, without making a neutered version of it that would mean
      relearning char gen with the main books. That sucked in the Essentials line where stuff didn't quite match up to the main book lines.

  4. Paizo have set the standard with their box set. I am saddened that WOTC refuses to learn from them, or from the mistakes of their crippleware past.

  5. I don't believe that WOTC cares AT ALL what Paizo, or anyone else, is doing. As far as they are concerned they have THE original D&D game, and whatever they do to it is golden. To back this up they point to all the "playtesting" they have done, seemingly willing to ignore how many playtesters dropped out along the way. And pointing to all the feedback they received, seemingly ignorant of the most constructive criticism. They seem to be self-important to the point of ridiculousness. If this were an adventure, they would be the tragic, "former glory" type of fallen Paladin BBEG. I have seen nothing... NOTHING.. so far to give me the least bit of interest in what they are doing.

    And as far as buying 5e just to keep an "RPG Collection complete," my collection is quite complete enough, and doesn't need this train-wreck to be complete. I would be embarrassed to display it on the shelf. Sorry if that tweaks anyone off, but just sayin'.

    1. Are you describing Gygax here or WotC?

    2. Heh... Well, aside from the fact that Gygax created the game (along with Arneson and a few others), there could be parallels drawn, I suppose, between the two. The big difference is that the game started as a hobby, a distraction for a group of wargamers who loved to game and who wanted something more. Today's D&D does not exist for the love of the game as it once did, but for the love of the dollar. Now, I like a good dollar as much as anyone, but there is a difference between the arrogance of yesterday and the greed of today. There is a happy medium, where the published material is riding on the cusp of the fanbase wave, but WotC is long beyond that point, and is now driving the wave where their whims - or their bean counters - desire.

  6. Someone remind me what sucked so bad about D&D, AD&D, and 2nd ed. AD&D (the only editions I've had) that needed 3-4 more editions to make it playable? Seriously, what was the big problem they fixed with 3rd, then the other problem they fixed with "3.5" (whatever that means), and again with 4th, and yet again with 5th? My games always worked just fine as-is.

    1. Nothing was wrong with them.

      Publishers like to sell new books. That mean new editions.

      Some ideas develop with time and are incorporated as well, obviously.

      The entire point of the OSR is to let you pick, play, and support whatever version you prefer. More versions is a plus if it adds things that you can use.


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