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5 Reasons to Play DUNGEONS & DRAGONS 5th Edition

You enter a dark, dreary article buried deep below the surface of With only a torch to light your way, you stumble blindly down the corridor, keeping your hand pressed flush to the wall for guidance. Tripping over a pebble in your path, you accidentally put your full weight on the rough-hewn granite of the walls and suddenly, you feel your handhold depressing into the wall. Before a poisoned quarrel can bury itself in your exposed flank, a friendly, pale-skinned author snatches it from the air.

“Greetings, traveler!” he says. “It seems you are out of your depth. This here is where we talk about Dungeons & Dragons 5th Edition, and why you should definitely, absolutely, positively be playing it.”

Your eyebrow instinctively raises, but you decide to listen to what this weird little hobgoblin has to say.

…Okay enough of that. That was fun though, wasn’t it? Remember how fun Dungeons & Dragons used to be? Remember when you and your group took one look at 4th Edition and you were like, “Sup, Pathfinder?” I do too, and with the release of today’s D&D 5th Edition Player’s Handbook (complete with a droolworthy Tyler Jacobson illustration of King Snurre, the titular king in 1978’s The Hall of the Fire Giant King) and Hoard of the Dragon Queen adventure, I’m happy to say it’s time to come home to D&D.

5. It’s accessible to newcomers

While 4th edition tried to simplify the arcane, often obtuse labyrinth of rules that was 3rd Edition and 3.5, it missed the mark and wound up dumbing down the core gaming experience in a way that alienated many longtime players. As a result, Wizards of the Coast saw something of an exodus as people moved away from D&D and sought similar games like Pathfinder to scratch that classic pen-and-paper itch. Yet what about those who had never played before? Why should they pick up 5th Edition? Well, for starters, it is largely designed with them in mind.

While many of you are likely scoffing and saying to yourself, “Pfft, D&D isn’t that hard,” let me remind you of what a wise man named The Dude once said: “You’re not wrong, you’re just an asshole.” Do YOU know how to grapple in 3.5? The answer is no, no you don’t. No one does. If you said, “Yes,” give yourself forty lashes with a wet noodle for lying to the class. For example, skill checks. Hello darkness, my old friend. A returning mechanic in 5th Edition, skill checks have thankfully been greatly streamlined to allow for greater ease of play. Gone are the ranks which you would invest in potential skills like Diplomacy or Perception. Instead, they are not intrinsically tied to one of the six core ability scores: Strength, Dexterity, Constitution, Wisdom, Intelligence, and Charisma. While ranks weren’t necessarily all that difficult to use, they also didn’t need to exist, a fact which 5th Edition acknowledged and rectified with a quickness.

Many of my friends and colleagues had expressed a long-time interest in Dungeons & Dragons, but felt deterred by its seemingly insurmountable learning curve. What 5th Edition manages to do so well is create a feeling of pick-up-and-playability from the word “go.” During our recent livestream of the 5th Edition Starter Box, several of the players had no prior roleplaying experience. Yet, once they got a handle on the simple math at the core of the system and a few basic concepts, they were fending off ambushes, parrying blows, and adventuring with the best of them. This sense of accessibility is, perhaps, what D&D does best.


4. It finally feels like D&D again.

Yet that accessibility doesn’t mean they’ve dumbed down the game. Quite the contrary, actually. One of the biggest complaints I heard about 4th Edition is that it didn’t feel like D&D. What that meant exactly differed from person to person, but the most frequent definition was that it was “too video game-like.” Procedural rules, especially when it came to combat, were simplified and systemized, forcing players to use their class-allotted powers in order to deal the most damage on any given turn. It took the spontaneity out of combat, which is something that is ingrained into the very lifeblood of D&D itself. You know how when your characters in Final Fantasy reach a certain level, you can pretty much just hit “X” at light speed and you’ll kill your enemies in a few annoying rounds? 4th Edition was a lot like that; you pretty much knew exactly what power or ability to use each round in order to finish combat as expediently as possible.

5th Edition realized that this was a problem and has managed to streamline some of the more archaic or head-scratchingly dense rules while maintaining the integrity of previous iterations. Subjectively, this is one of the most easy-to-play, enjoyable Editions, to date, as it blends some of the best elements of past Editions to create a sum greater than its parts. This is no longer a game that merely rewards slavish devotion to intricate knowledge of rules tables or lends itself to min-maxing a la Skyrim; rather, this is a game that rewards creativity, the spirit in which the game was created in the first place and that, my friends, is a wonderful thing.


3. Advantages and Disadvantages

No, this isn’t a section about the pros and cons of 5th Edition. Rather, it’s about one of the most fascinating new additions to the ever-evolving formula that makes Dungeons & Dragons the wonderful timesink that it is. Dubbed “Advantage and Disadvantage”, the new mechanic is simple in theory: when a player who has an Advantage attempts an action during combat or while exploring, they are allowed to roll two twenty-sided dice (d20s) rather than the traditional one. To determine success, the player is allowed to use the higher of the two rolls as the result. Likewise, when a player has a Disadvantage, they roll two d20s and are made to use the lower of the two results.

As I learned the hard way, this doesn’t always work in the player’s favor (helloooo, falling damage!), but it provides Dungeon Masters with a wonderfully intuitive built-in mechanic for interpreting non-standard actions a player might take. If a rogue skulks in the shadows of a bell tower and uses his vantage point to snipe at the orcs below, he gets an Advantage as long as he maintains his position. And if you’re like me and you try to backflip out of a second-story window while wearing plate armor, well, you’d better believe that’s a Disadvantage. But that spirit of creativity is precisely what makes the game so exciting, and this is a fantastic way to give DMs the tools they need to implement those off-the-wall ideas into the game seamlessly.

2. THAC0 is still, thankfully, dead.

Enough said. Sorry, AD&D fans and mathematicians, but some things will never change.


1. The community

Back in the day, prospective players had to find an open dining room table, basement, or take refuge at their local comic book shop or gaming store if they wanted to find a quiet place in which to slay dragons, wield vorpal swords, and gallivant about the countryside. Magazines like Dungeon and Dragon opened up the hobby to a wider audience and provided a steady stream of new content and homebrew rules to keep campaigns fresh and make players feel like they were part of a shared world. Yet, as the license phased out of Paizo’s hands and those magazines went away, the Internet increasingly filled that void for lonely gamers looking to connect with other ready and willing players. Thankfully, this is something that did not go unnoticed by Wizards, who have done a tremendous job of creating a vibrant community on their website. Want to share your war stories? Play a forum-based campaign? Nerd out about the rich inner lives of mind flayers? It’s all right there at your fingertips.

In fact, Wizards is so focused on making D&D a community-oriented activity that they have made the basic rules of 5th Edition available for free in PDF form. While this isn’t quite the open D20 System license that lead to a proliferation and oversaturation of overly complex (and sometimes monumentally fun) game variants and campaign settings, it is a tremendously smart move and a way to help bring in a new audience of gamers that might be deterred by the $49.95 price tag for each of the three core books. Catering to your existing audience is important, but as Wizards well knows, the only way that the game is sustainable in the long run – especially in this era of video game dominance – is to bring in new blood. And the best way to do that is to make your product available to as large of an audience as possible.

The release of the mammoth Player’s Handbook is just the beginning. The Monster Manual, a bestiary of all the nasties in the D&D universe, arrives on September 30th, and the Dungeon Master’s Guide won’t hit shelves until November 18th.

Based on the success of our Starter Kit livestream, we’re going to be integrating Dungeons & Dragons into our Twitch livestreaming plans down the line, so hopefully, even if you can’t get a group together on your own, you can join us for those. While we’re eager to sink our teeth into the “Tyranny of Dragons” campaign arc, we’re also hoping to delve into some classic modules as well. It’s too early to tell if this is going to be the critical hit that Wizards needs for the D&D brand, but no one can deny their incredible initiative.


Will you be making the switch to Dungeons & Dragons 5th Edition? Why or why not? Or do you just want to share one of your favorite war stories? Let us know in the comments below.

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  • Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaand, with the “THAC0 remains dead” comment you once again try to divide the old players from new ones.  Stop doing that, it’s not funny, and you should apologize.

    • Maybe old school players shouldn’t be so touchy about their precious THAC0. I like all of the editions and consider myself to be as much of an old-school player as I am a new-school one. I don’t get why people have to pick one side and hate the other. Old-school games have a lot of flavour and I’m fine with using THAC0 or tables when I’m playing those games. It just makes sense for the game to evolve into a more user-friendly and intuitive experience. A playful jab at THAC0 isn’t a jab at old-school players themselves, and people need to learn to differentiate the two.

  • My group still plays 3.5.  We are in our 40’s, married with families, and play once a week.  We decided to keep playing 3.5 when 4E came out for the simple reason that we had, combined, already invested hundreds (maybe even thousands) buying all the 3.5 books and materials. 

    We will continue to play 3.5 now, as well.  We can’t afford the switch, and we have enough material to last us until we are in the old folk’s home.

    • You only need to spend between 90 to 120 dollars to have everything you’ll ever need for D&D 5e. Of course, if you want extra stuff like campaign settings, those are optional. The 3.5 fluff books you’ve spent “thousands” on won’t become competely obsolete. I for one plan on taking fluff from my 3.5 FR campaign setting and using in my 5e games. You can still make use of your 3.5 books and get what you need to play 5e without breaking the bank. Of course, if you prefer the 3.5 rules, that’s absolutely fine too. No one’s going to force you to switch to 5e. :)

  • I played one game of 4.0 and went back to 3.5. I’m intrigued by 5.0 but I’m letting others shell out the cash and playing a game or two before I start buying books again. Our current 3.5 collection takes up an entire 3ftx3ft bookshelf.

  • I’m sure 5th edition has some nice tweaks, but I still don’t see the need to leave 3rd edition behind. It’s not like we’ve been playing it and thinking “This is only to tide us over until they make an ACTUALLY good game…!” If I love D&D enough to pay attention to new additions… well, that means I love it enough that I won’t need to play a whole new game, either.

    Hopefully people getting into the game find it accessible, though.

  • So far, this game is extremely accessible. It basically accomplishes the  goal of what D&D basic set out to do, and essentially feels like what 3rd edition should have been in the first place rather then just copy paste ideas from AD&D 2nd edition with a layer of new rules and not give a damn about how the two would really interact. I very much like it.

  • I’ve been play testing this since it has been available and as somebody who’s played D&D since the 80’s I am very happy with this edition. It’s simple, yet elegant and refined. Well done Wizards. You have made D&D awesome again! LONG LIVE 5th EDITION!

  • I’ll play this game if someone else runs it, maybe.  Maybe.  I just now started to play 3.5, and Pathfinder, and might actually spend a little money on those games.  I don’t need a new edition, AD&D 2nd edition was the bomb as far as I’m concerned, but then my education in basic math was suitable to handle Thac0; I guess that’s what’s missing in the new crowd, “common core” dumbing shit down as usual. And I don’t get how some people felt “forced” into 3rd edition; why?  If you had all the 1 or 2 edition books, and no one came and took them away from you, why bother switching?  Hasbro has done a decent job of walking D&D back a little from the 4th edition debacle, but the hyperbole of “D&D is cool again!”  is crap; AD&D never ceased to exist, neither did BECMI for that matter. 

    And if you really don’t like Thac0 but want the old school feel, go to  where everything, I said EVERYTHING, is free to download, from core rule books to expansion sets to modules and campaign settings.  It’s a labor of love that uses the OSR d20 mechanics and builds a simplistic, BECMI or 1st edition AD&D game clone around it. 

      • Ummm nothing, you mean you want to play their game for free, even though they dumped buckets of cash to develop it. How the hell do you people think these companies are going to stay in business if they just “everything”  away for free!? You get the basic version for free, that should be enough!

        • True story: I don’t own a tablet. Related true story: almost every D&D player and DM I know who owns a tablet uses their tablet to access SRD or PRD to quickly access info on characters, monsters, and items. Since, oddly enough, searching SRD or PRD is faster than paging through books, and also better for a DM who doesn’t want to alert his players that they just walked into a room with a hidden monster in it.

          Wanting online access to rules is not the same as “wanting to play their game for free.” Please re-think your comment and try again.

        • Yet Paizo, who made their basic rules, expansions and a great deal of their worlds available for FREE, still manage to be successful.  Perhaps it is because when you like the FREE stuff, you’re more likely to buy the products they release?

  • Is is possible for anyone to write about 5e without spending half the word count getting in their last few little hamfisted swipes at previous editions?

  • I already made the switch to 5e when the basic pdf came out. I just got the PHB this Tuesday and I can honestly say that I won’t be looking back, even though I have a special place in my heart for 1st, 2nd and 3.5 edition. This was exactly what D&D needed: A return to basics without removing all of the options and opportunities for customisation. This is the D&D I’ve been waiting for.

  • I will always stick with 3rd edition unless I play 5e and it is hugely better. The rules for grappling are easy as are all the other rules once you get used to them. GO 3E. I do agree that completely ruined D&D for quite a while.  

  • Totally disagree.  They’ve dumbed down the entire system, dropped the actually interesting mechanics from the Playtest, and gone with all the worst Traditionalist crap that the BECMI fans whined for.
    5e is a FAIL.

  • I’m curious Mr. Casey. Were you paid by WoTC to write this article? It just seems like every “review” of 5th edition I’ve read so far, uses almost identical language. “Cool, new, streamlined” versus older editions being “Arcane, complicated, impossible to understand”. Throw in some bashing of fans of other editions. Then claim other editions were “bogged down in rule”.(yeah rules. Who even needs those!)  I find that interesting, almost as if someone somewhere is giving out a list of talking points they want covered in these “spontaneous” reviews.

  • Reminded that D&D is not the only RPG. In fact for any given thing D&D is good at (much less the many, many things it’s bad at), there are dozens of other games that completely put it to shame.

  • Hey edition warriors: are rules/rule sets even *worth* arguing/pontificating about? I thought imagination and storytelling were the most important aspects of a good RPG, not whether the grappling rules are more intuitive in one edition or another?
    Is one’s ability to create/tell a story (or at least have fun around a table) really so dependent on a specific rule-set or so impeded by another?

    • Thank you. Complaining about any edition reads as complaining about semantics. It’s just arguing over different versions of imagination hand-holding. If something is “too complicated” for you to understand, or “too rudimentary” to be fun, then make something else up! These aren’t the Ten Commandments, you’re allowed to bend the rules–heck, bending the rules is in the rules!

  • Or you could just go with Castles & Crusades, which has been doing the “everything tied to ability checks” deal for 10 years running so it’s got all the bugs worked out. It’s even EASIER and MORE open to play, and costs a fraction of the price of D&D, because you only need two, $30 rulebooks to play, instead of three, $50 rulebooks, and with half the rules of D&D needed. 

  • I won’t be playing 5e. After 4e my group switched to Castles and Crusades and hasn’t looked back. Troll Lord Games editing sucks, but the rules and modules are great fun.

  • This is the first I’ve looked at 5e, and I came to one immediate conclusion: Advantage/Disadvantage is a terrible mechanic. For a rule set that is supposed to simplify things, no one should have to create a spreadsheet to determine how much of a benefit/penalty this gives you.

    • It’s actually quite an effective mechanic that plays out nice and swiftly.  It’s much easier for a DM to say “you have advantage” or “you have disadvantage” rather than have to think about conditional numerical bonuses.  To me, verisimilitude is more impacted by crunching numbers, so having a quick way to make a positive/negative ruling keeps the action tight and the story going.

  • I think the advantage/disadvantage rule actually sounds like a bad thing. It could potentially create a situation where something that is supposed to be difficult becomes easier, and something that is supposed to be easy becomes more difficult.

    Whereas before you would use a +/- modifier for an action, now it’s just roll twice and pick one. But that creates a problem. It takes something in-game that’s supposed to be based around proficiency and skill and reduces it to pure real-world luck.

    What if a character is really bad at something (for instance, a clunky character attempting a stealthy maneuver), but the player is lucky and makes high rolls? No matter which roll they pick, it’s still going to be high. So their character effectively becomes really good at what they’re supposed to be bad at.

    On the other hand, say the character is supposed to be really proficient at something (a nimble character attempting stealth), but the player is unlucky and keeps making low rolls. No matter which roll they pick, it’s still going to be low. So their character effectively becomes really bad at something they’re supposed to be good at.

    Now, if you were using +/- modifiers instead, the real world luck factor would be mitigated somewhat, creating a more realistic in-game situation. If the character who is bad at something rolls high, they’ll realistically still be knocked down a peg by the negative modifier. If the character who is good at something rolls low, they won’t suddenly become inept because they’ll be bolstered by the positive modifier. It’s just makes more sense, thematically.

    • Advantage/Disadvantage are not required.  They’re conditional and dependent on the adjudications of the DM.  +/- modifiers still exist in 5th Edition and characters still have strengths/weaknesses.  Advantage/Disadvantage is layered on top of that, and not wantonly, but as is justified by the circumstances.
      It’s actually quite slick and is a great reward/penalty system that can be easily and quickly overlaid into any situation.

  • I am one of the people that still thing THAC0 was great. Yes I have played newer versions and have enjoyed them but at heart THAC0 will always be #1 for me. I do however want to play 5th ed because it looks interesting sadly my normal group is not interested. So I have to find a new group to game with.

  • We already have a better D&D. It’s called Paizo’s Pathfinder system. They crowdsourced its development, and it out-sells D&D every single quarter. and it feels like D&D. The mishmash of old D&Ds called 5th edition is too little too late. Paizo takes care of its players, unlike D&D’s masters, who just try to cash in on the latest trends. There’s no reason to play 5th edition.

  •  2nd edition was the best. Thac0 worked great and only required simple kindergarten level mathematics. There was a rule fire almost anything and dm screens had handy tables. The world was fantastic. It was when wotc changed to 3.0 and later versions, that all my gaming friends stopped playing. We tried to resurrect the magic with each edition but it always just fell short of corrupting the group’s attention.  They simply hated the rules. I think WOTC needs to reprint all the original 2nd edition books and then make new material for it. They can still  5th or whatever but just mirror each module/sourcebook  with 2nd ed rules too.

  • My buddy bought the phb and I promptly read the rules. They’re horrible. If my group was so inclined is have stuck with 4th ed (with a couple house rules to improve balance). We now play 13th age which I find to be an amazingly fun system with some great roleplay tools built right in! Would be interested in a review from you gents. 

  • I would like to read what 5th Ed D&D is all about. Mainly if they put Monks back in as a playable class. 
    What I really need to do is make time to read the 5th Ed Shadowrun. While AD&D was my first love as a kid, Shadowrun was my girlfriend. ~Le Sigh~ Yes, I made that comparison. 
    I am glad to hear both systems are coming out of the 4th Ed Curse. 

  • I never tried 4th edition, I started playing several years back with 3.5 and stayed with it. 4th and pathfinder never interested me enough to check out, despite friends telling me to do so. 5th edition though, I might look into that. 

  • I wish people would stop hating on 4th edition. I like 4e, even like it better than 3.5/Pathfinder, but I wouldn’t criticize anyone for liking their favored system more than my favored system.  I also like 5e, for different reasons. The starter set has been fun and I think I’ll use it for my next game. You can like a system without disparaging another system. It’s not a zero sum game. Shame on the author for putting down 4e and 2e, can’t we just like 5e for what it is without hating on others.

  • I started in 1st edition have been through 2nd and the options saw the coming of 3rd and the revision then the horrors of the 4th. I have to say 5th has restored my spirit of wonder and Desiree to game with D&D once again. Lets hope that they don’t screw this one up too much and want to redo it again. 

  • Sorry this doesn’t really do anything for me as a sell. For a number of reasons.

    1) If you want to learn a rpg then it doesn’t need to be streamlined you either like it or you don’t. That’s part of the experience. BTW that thaco joke is getting old that’s how many of us cut our teeth. You want to appeal to the proper audience you got to know who your talking to you WotC mouthpiece.

    2) Advantages and disadvantages? Please trait and drawbacks in Pathfinder easily top it and enrich the experience instead of giving you a free throw shot at a check.

    3) WotC wants us now? Does it? Does it really? Because I recall the whole 4th edition “you don’t like it then don’t play it” mentality. Now that M;TG is continuing to sink them further and further in they expect us to come crawling back after killing all we love. Did you read the Dark Sun 4th edition? What they did to Ravenloft? They spat in the face of everyone that ever bought a D&D book back in the day. They allowed the Dragonlance creators to pull Lord Soth out of Ravenloft and kill him out of spite. They act like they want us now after we went with people that actually listened to us and loved the game we cherished? Sorry you better bring something to the table more than “we’ll do better this time”

    4) Wow, nobody knows how to do a grapple check. Read the rule book dumbass.

    5) Skill ranks not needed? Then how the hell do you measure your ability to create something? Or how good you are at Acrobatics? What is every hero a freakin gymnast or a genius in linguistics from the get go?

    6) The community. You want to talk about the community. That online community wouldn’t be there spinning homebrewed rules if WotC  didn’t pull out and try to suck up to the WOW crowd. That was the biggest insult. They change it to a video game sim and then they don’t even release a descent video game for the system. they don’t bring back classic settings for more than a single book. They just want your money so they don’t go banking their fortunes on a crappy card game. And shame on the nerdist for sucking up to them. We already don’t have journalistic integrity in Video game news I expect better from RPG journalists. Why haven’t they been called out for the money grubbing assholes that made us toss out a library full of books for a system we didn’t want or need and released it when the games chief creator had just died!!! WotC betrayed the real fans and now they are desperate to get us back. Well I won’t have it. I won’t be happy until they go under and lose the rights to the game I *use* to love. Paizo stayed straight with me and i respect them for it and if the “community” has any sense they will question just why they had to do it in the first place.

    If you want to sell this game to us don’t talk down to us. Don’t insult the true players that played before geek was chic. Don’t insult Thaco, don’t tell us skills are a broken system. Don’t talk to us like we are dinosaurs pining for a forgotten age. We’re men and women who invested money, time, and memories in a game that we cherish. If we want to recapture that then that’s important to us. More than that people who play this version ask yourself is this what I’m going to cherish? Is this what I’m going to teach my son how to play? Is this what gary gygax entertained and thrilled our imaginations with or is it just another corporate grab to pull a tired broken company out of the pit. Then do what I do. Dust the 2nd edition books, the 3.0’s the 3.5s and all the games that were made with love. Celebrate the real game not the terrible corporate abomination that this spews forth.

    Sorry WotC you won’t fool me again.

  • It’s a nice article but I was a part of the new D&D playtest from beginning to end and I have to say that, while this new edition is a great improvement over many of the issues you noted that many players had with 4th Edition (myself included), I saw nothing in the playtest or the final product which has lured me away from Pathfinder.

    While I agree that the new D&D is excellent for introducing new players to their first Pen and Paper RPG, I don’t think that the changes will win back any significant portion of the fan base of experienced players they lost with 4th ed.

    Additionally WoTC should rethink their starter box cause IMO the Patherfinder Beginer Box gives you more bang for the buck and is a better introduction to the rule set.

    The D&D Starter Box comes with a 64-page adventure book, a
    32-page rulebook for playing characters level 1-5
    5 pre-generated characters, with character sheets and 6 dice.

    The Pathfinder Beginner Box give you. 64-page Hero’s Handbook, (i.e. Player’s Guide), A 96-page Game Master’s Guide (with mini Monster Manual), 7 dice., 80 full-color pawns depicting both heroes and monsters
    , Four pregenerated character sheets, Four blank character sheets, a resuable, double-sided Flip-Mat play surface that works with any kind of marker
    and a 16-page Transition Guide for when you’re ready to play the full game.

    When speaking of the full set there is a big price difference as well. D&D is a three book set, PHB, DMG and MM each with an MSRP of $49.95. So at retail prices it’s $149.85 for all three books.

    Pathfinder is two books, Core Rules MSRP $49.99 and Bestiary Book (yes I know there are three more monster books but only one is needed to get started and do you really think D&D is going to stop at one MM?) MSRP $39.99 for a retail total of $89.98 so Pathfinder is $59.87 less to start then D&D. Also Pathfinder has been out for several years so gamers on a budget can always look for used copies.

    But personnel preference aside, I think the new D&D is good for for DMs with players who are totally new to PnP RPGs (or those who like simplicity) and I if I was going to start playing myself (for the first time) my choice (based on reviews) would likely be D&D, however I would have shell out more $$$ cause it’s more expensive to start then Pathfinder.

  • Man, I am trusting you, I came looking for someones review who would directly criticizes 4th edition as they aren’t plants and I was welcomed by a big lebowski quote I shall trust this review and give it a try

    • I disagree on one point: Every class in 5E is useful right off the bat.
      You don’t need half a dozen or so sourcebooks to create a monk that’s actually useful. The Rogue is more than just a bundle of walking skills. The Bard as a class isn’t a trap option. The Fighter is actually useful.

      And it works in the other direction too. Clerics, Druids and Wizards are brought down from the lofty perch of being able to trivialize any encounter of even remotely close CR.

      And these are just the classes. There are tons of great ideas in there, such as bounded accuracy, or the simple wonder that is the Proficiency system.

      I’d go on talking if I thought that there was any way to convert you, but I doubt there is. Still, I feel that I should try, if nothing else for other people who read this later on. 3.5 had good points, I agree, but 5E builds on all of them, and adds good points of it’s own.

  • The short answer is a resounding “no, I will not ‘make the switch’ “.
    The long answer?
    I was introduced to D&D by way of Fourth Edition; up until that point, my ‘gaming’ consisted of home console and handheld video games, such as Zelda, Fire Emblem, and Pokemon. From -that- perspective, the heavily codified parameters of 4E were -familiar-, -comfortable-, and above all, -succinct-.
    Admittedly, I have only accumulated about 8 hours of real-world gameplay, and some intermittent months of play-by-post interactions, so my argument is wet-paper-thin at best; but I have listened to real play podcasts (namely Major Spoilers Critical Hit podcast) and have read the first and second trinity of Core sourcebooks–and I never once felt that 4E was a stagnation on creativity, role-play, or adventure.
    I heard it best from the Game Master of the podcast I listen to: the RAW of Dungeons and Dragons is -not- conducive to RP. The RP is what the players bring to the table by flavoring their PCs with backstories, accents, quirks, and other things. The books should NOT define how you cooperatively create your stories, they should ONLY provide the GUIDELINES to help -immerse- you in the stories you make.
    I -do- have a copy of the 5th Edition PHB. I’ve read through it nearly five times now–and I feel no excitement to create a character with these rules or take part in a world with PCs made from this edition; and that’s all on -me-. There’s nothing inherently -wrong- with 5th Edition. I just know that I personally don’t like it.
    That’s my thoughts, anyway. Won’t surprise me I end up the last person to play 4E, but to that I say:
    “Fourth and Proud”

  • Why does everyone hate THACO?I play 5e, but I prefer to run 2e because it feels like an adventure game with lots of roleplaying. 5e still kinda feels like a game of tactical function. Easier to understand than 3.5 or 4e, but still focusing on what powers you get when you level and how they affect combat (and combat and more combat).

  • By 3.5 I was totally burned out and fed-up with DnD, having been at it since ’78-79 with the white box  and had moved on to other systems. Now, after sitting in a game at CONquest X and reading reviews I am actually excited. Never thought I’d feel that way about a DnD product again…

  • 4th edition rewarded creativity too. All TTRPG’s do if the GM knows how to GM. I’m so sick of 4e bashing…5e is ok, it’s what 3e should have been. 4e is a better, more balanced system (no caster superiority) with much less sacred cow silly rules and silly formatting (learning 3rd level spells at level 5?!).

  • The biggest asset to 5th edition is what these games were meant to be…Roleplaying. Not everything is hack and slash. Sure if you found a great dungeon master and the right mix of players role play can come into any table top game. However, someone new coming into the game in 4th edition had no real clue on acting out the characters personality.

    The new edition provides help for new players on creating a rich background for players to add to. For myself that is a huge bonus while being a dm helping new players. I also love the break down on spell casters with a more diverse class system of sorcerer, warlock, and wizard. Spellcaster’s seemed very rare in 4th edition and were lucky if they made it through any campaign. 4th edition was not spell caster friendly, it was melee class heavy and not balanced at all in my opinion.

    I’ve never played Pathfinder so I cannot compare the two, but I can compare versions of D&D and I am happy they brought back the feel of the old Advanced rules. Those that complain about the newest version may not be giving it enough testing, after all the Dungeons Masters guide was only just released, and it’s a wonderful handbook, chock full of ideas for a dungeon master and much more information than 4th edition.

    And for those that may not realize much of the old mythos has been reintroduced with legendary characters from the past, and added new ones. This makes for a richer environment and a better background of each realm. Its not perfect yet, but as time marches forth more things are going to be added, I can just feel it. I am hoping for a re-intro to ravenloft, and maybe even Greyhawk. Keeping my fingers crossed.

  • Yeah, they can keep their d20, 4th and 5th editions.  I’ll take my old 1984 Basic D&D any day over everything else.  If you want to play REAL D&D, pick up the Basic Sets from ebay or buy the PDF’s.  Best version of D&D period.  Simple yet challenging, well written, play tested to perfection and all around fun.

  • It is interesting to follow the evolution of Dungeons & Dragons.   I remember first playing the basic (blue soft book in a box) D&D at a friend’s house around 8th grade ca. 79/80.    He also had these mythical books labeled Advanced Dungeons & Dragons Player Handbook and Monster Manual.   After that first time we wanted to play with the AD&D books but they were incomplete.  No DMG yet.  So we played a hybrid game of the soft blue basic book and the 2 AD&D books we had.  I remember buying my own and when the DMG was finally released, asking my parents for that for Christmas.  It had the princely price of $12 on it.  My folks got it for me and I remember sneaking up into the attic to read it regularly before Christmas came.  My HS years were spent playing AD&D and I ended up with all the various books, but never did spend very much on modules, environments like Greyhawk, etc.  We just made up our own worlds.  Ah, the great feel of a pencil and graph and hex paper on your desk.  I bought a couple 2E books but we never played.  I started a 1E game (augmented with old Dragon magazine “updated” like Archer, Ranger/Archer, etc) with my son a few years back.  Unfortunately I broke my ankle soon thereafter and we stopped.   Am looking into restarting this sometime.   Saw the 5E and was wondering if it would be a good “upgrade.”   Nah.  Will stick with my 1E worlds and “campaigns.”   Not knocking 5E in any way.  Just that 1E was that mythically great open space that we used to let our imaginations run wild, and that is good enough for me.  Probably even buy some of the new 1E premium edition books.