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D&D 4th Edition

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D&D 4th Edition

Postby GDPALLIDAR » Aug 17, 2007 (5:20 am)

I don't know how many of you play D&D, but 4th Edition was announced yesterday and I just made a big post to my local D&D Meetup group, which I thought I'd paste here too.


Fairly recently I was talking to Dan and said that I thought WoTC was going to make their own character generation tool (like eTools, PCGen, etc.) which I based on the fact that the publishers of those tools had lost their license (hence those programs don't contain newer materials.) Little did I know I was only scratching the surface on this concept.

What WoTC is doing is brilliant. They want to sell lots of product, they probably have some people who are salivating to redo core parts of the game, and piracy via PDF's has to be a significant concern. So, what do they do? They address all three issues in one fell swoop - a swoop that necessitated releasing a new edition.

In May 2008, the 43 PHB comes out (MM in June, DMG in July, other product throughout 2008). Some leadups will come out December 2007 / January 2008, previews of sorts, "Wizards Presents: Classes and Races" and "Wizards Presents: Worlds and Monsters". However, here's where the PDF issue is addressed - online tools built by Wizards.

These tools, which include character generators, map/dungeon builders, and pretty much anything WoTC can think of to offer as a tool online will require key codes found in the books you buy. As you collect these codes, you use them on the WoTC site and gain access to new options in the online tools based on the relevant book. To use a 3.5e example, it would be like punching in a code for Complete Warrior in the site and now your character generator tool can pick the prestige classes in CW. Or, using your code for a specific adventure book and gaining access to the maps online.

Now, I don't know how much difference this really can or will make in terms of avoiding piracy - the only way to make it really effective is to make keys single use, so once you use it on a profile on the site, it can't be reused by someone else, but then we all know that many people will just window shop in their favorite gaming store and write down the code without buying the book. My guess is that maybe WoTC will put the code in a foil or other such envelope/wrapper inside the book or maybe outright seal books in plastic so you can't open them without removing the wrapping. I wonder how much this will change what shopping for D&D books is like.

Anyway, details on 4e itself are sketchy of course, but I'll share what I have found so far:

- One goal of 4e was described as going from a "textbook" feel in prior versions to a "magazine" feel in 4e. I'm not sure what this means.

- Tools on the D&D site will include: dungeon and adventure builders, pc generator, character generator and visualizer, "my" options like my campaign, my character, etc., D&D magazines.

- There's something called a "game table" to facilitate playing, but I don't know how it works exactly. Assumably it allows people to gather online and play online, and I'll bet they work in those above mentioned product codes somehow.

- Classes are being given more defined roles. I would expect fighters to be much more impressive in 4e than they are usually in 3.5e.

- There's mention of "power sources" for arcane and divine magic in the PHB apparently - how this fits in will be interesting to see. I have to wonder if the current spell slot system will stay or go.

- It sounds like the books will feature a ton of new art for those who are big on art stuff.

- Making it easier for new people to learn how to play is a noted goal. It sounds like perhaps some of the rules will be consolidated a bit, but that's going to be a question mark for now.

- OGL, d20, etc licenses will still exist.

That's all I know so far... I'm very interested to see how it goes. I have bought a ton of books in the last year, so I don't see myself giving up 3.5 lightly... but, I also realize that if this online thing works out in a big way, all those 3.5 books will be irrelevant for that purpose. Locally, it will be interesting to see how much resistance there is to change once we're into the fall/winter of 2008 and people have access to all three core books and a few other books.
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The countdown begins!

Postby GOTHICPROPHET » Mar 8, 2008 (9:27 pm)

I have all of the Core books (Player's Handbook, Monster Manual & Dungeon Master's Guide) on pre-order from Amazon. They should be getting to my house sometime between June 10th and June 17th depending on when it ships.

So far, from the brief glimpses Wizards of the Cost have released, 4th edition looks like a vast improvement over 3rd/3.5.

The official release date for 4th Edition's core materials is June 6th, though there is an adventure set to be released May 20th - if anyone can explain why an adventure would be released a few weeks before the rules it'd be appreciated

A few things I'm looking forward to:
    New Race! Dragonborn
    Everyone getting powers, not just feats!
    Warlock class!
    Alignment is no longer a mechanic! Now it's an RP tool, as it should be.
    Playing/Running campaigns

Things I'm not really looking forward to:
    Spellplague storyline in Forgotten Realms
    Learning another new rules set

Incidentally, for those fellow D&D players out there - I'd recommend getting the 'Core rules box set' from Amazon.com - $66.12 [MSRP is $104.95] (plus an additional 5% for pre-ordering.) If you buy the 3 together, you save a few bucks and you can get free shipping.

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/078695 ... L9UXVWNJF7
StormLord Wyeth De'Wynter / Avian Wizard
Disciple of Velpar Vernog Manhunter / Troll Cleric (Priest)
Locksmith Krael Oblodra / Elven Locksmith
Savage Urg Gra'lor / Troll Barbarian
Arm of Mora Keiran Del'ar / Minotaur Paladin (Cleric)
Healie-Troll Kuurrk Graatch / Troll Healer
... and more!

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