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D&D Next playtest rules. Your thoughts?

The fighter was specifically built as a simple attacker for the playtest, as WotC isn't interested in us playtesting classes yet, rather the general game mechanics. The backgrounds and themes will help a lot once that's all developed, and I'm sure the fighter's gonna get the love it needs.

I almost agree with you except I would replace the phrase "I'm sure" with "I hope", cause I'm not sure of anything when it comes to their ability to not screw up fighters. If they deliberately played down the playtest fighter I think there's some good reasons to hope, but that's as far as I'll go right now.

I don't think this fighter looks boring at all

Class: Fighter
Background: Priest
Theme: Magic-User

Overall I really like what I am seeing and the possibilities from modular options makes me eager to see more

Actually, from what I've heard, the Fighter class they intend to use isn't finished yet, and the one presented here is intended as a placeholder. Understand, this is hearsay, but supposedly they're planning to give the Fighter more varied attack options once it's done.

So far what I've read is mostly good. It has a 2e feel to it which is good in my mind because that was my favorite version (skills & powers especially). You can see the influences from 3e and 4e though, and I love the way they worked healing surges into the game without calling them healing surges. I seem to be in the minority, but I loved the damage and healing system in 4e, the healing surges, second wind, bloodied condition... I liked all of that. I'd like to see it carried over, but it doesn't look like that will happen. They sort of allude to a bloodied value in the hit point section without actually calling it that.

As for the Fighter, I would hope it gets more love, but I know a few of my former players from way back who would look at the one-sheet fighter and say "finally....". I have found that a lot of people who like fighters like it for the simplicity. That was one of the things I hated most. I never felt like I had options with a fighter aside from "run up and swing my weapon". That's why I liked the 4e fighters. Sure it was the same system used for magic, but it was re-flavored enough to make it interesting to me.

I'm of the complete opposite opinion when it comes to fighters. A friend and i fight constantly over whether or not Fighters are interesting or too simple and boring. He says the same thing, he doesn't like 'just swinging with his weapon' and feels that all fingers are the same and too simplistic, but he also tends to like a lot of the crazy spell-like abilities, or spells, or something.

But in 3.5, with the sheer volume of feats and techniques from literally dozens of books, i could make ten characters as Fighters and not have a single one that was the same, or boring. There are weapon feat and shield feats and TWF feats and sword and shield feats and mobility feats and tanking feats.

But thats not the point anymore since this is an entirely new game, and i would like to see as many options in 5th edition as there were in 3.5. But, i was VERY not happy with 4th, to me if felt so much like playing an MMO, i just didn't like it, a focus on a battlegrid, a focus on 'button-press powers' and at-will abilities was too much for me. There were some things i liked in 4th, but very few things.

I like what I'm reading so far. If they don't botch anything, down the line, I'll probably use this instead of 3.5.

That's a solid IF, though. It's still WotC, and they're known botchers.

With all the discussion there has been of D&D over the years ("2nd Ed was best! 3.5 was the glory days! 4th is the superior product!"), I wonder if it's even possible to make a 5th edition that won't alienate parts of the player base. It seems that, no matter how much they playtest, no matter how much feedback they get, there are always going to be things people don't like about a game. I just wonder how close they'll get to "The edition that alienates the fewest players."

4th Edition's biggest flaw was that they made every class the same. Sure, the words were different and the descriptors were different, and there were a small handful of semi-unique options available. But in the end, everyone had the same general array of abilities and actions available. They weren't really individual classes so much as different builds of a single class. The fact that they were all combat-oriented with little to no out-of-combat options didn't help matters either. Nor did the simplistic, overly redundant language they used in describing everything.

Say what you will about the quality and production values of earlier editions of the game, especially the first edition of AD&D, but at least TSR didn't dumb down the language or overly simplify everything. I remember being confused as Hell about some of the terminology used in those older books, and how they forced me to increase my vocabulary and reading comprehension skills. But the most recent edition? It makes me feel like I'm reading See Spot Run. If the creatively stifling rules and the MMO-oriented concepts weren't enough to drive me away, that would have done the job anyway. I don't enjoy being talked down to, and that's exactly the impression I get every time I read a 4th Edition rulebook... and the D&D Next playtest material.

That said, I think the biggest mistake they made and are continuing to make, at least from the playtest material I've read so far, is that they're catering to the munchkins "optimizers" too much. There's a reason these games have living, breathing Dungeon Masters capable of independent thinking. WotC needs to tell the munchkins to sod off, obliterate their "character optimization" forums, and just focus on making the best game they can while trying to keep it as internally consistent as they can. To hell with the rules lawyering crybabies. They, like most everyone else, are just going to house rule everything away anyway. So why make a shoddy game that caters to the worst elements of the player base?

The fact that "D&D Next" is one of the most insipid titles ever doesn't help, too.

Originally Posted by Quarterpound View Post
The fighter was specifically built as a simple attacker for the playtest, as WotC isn't interested in us playtesting classes yet, rather the general game mechanics. The backgrounds and themes will help a lot once that's all developed, and I'm sure the fighter's gonna get the love it needs.
This. It seems to me that people are more excited to point out what's wrong than they are to just start playing and help WotC out. The playtest is just that. You test it by playing it.

Now I can't exactly say for everyone here that they haven't tried yet, but whether they have or not, I believe this applies:

Play the game. If you love it (like I am so far), let us know why. If you don't, provide what you believe is the best solution. Not only can you tell US what your solution is, but you can tell WotC and they will be listening for once! I'm just one of those dudes who doesn't want to see the same complaint repeatedly.

My quick take on fighters: You make them fun when you play them how you want to play them. If you need your friends with the magic powers to buff you up, so be it. At least you know they're your buddies.

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