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Dungeons and Dragons 4th Edition is on the way...

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Wish they'd start fresh with a new world for 4e, but looks like it will be FR/Greyhawk once again... I liked how it was done in the Red Box days(what I started with), where the borders didn't extend beyond the Grand Duchy and only in later products would you sail toward the Isle of Dread or wherever. Always plenty of space for the dm's imagination to fill in. Granted the rules were simpleton compared to what we have now, but the adventures/world were pretty friggin cool.

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The only good thing about 4e?

 

Now lots of people will understand how those of us who played 2e felt seven to eight years ago... :o

Overjoyed? Because that's what I felt. I played 2nd Ed. for 11 years and couldn't wait to be rid of it.

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I *think* he's suggesting he still likes 2E.

 

Which puts some very nice irony in his post, being that it sucked compared to 3E.


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(Approved by Fio, so feel free to use it)

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I still like 2E. It's just that I like 3.XE even more. :shifty:

 

And that's pretty much how I imagine I'll feel about 4th. I'll still have some nice memories about 3rd edition, and especially some its variants, but I imagine that most of my games will be happily run in 4th edition. That being said, I'm going to be really bummed out if Iron Heroes doesn't have a 4th edtion conversion or new book.


My blood! He punched out all my blood! - Meet the Sandvich

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2nd edition had some interesting material in terms of campaign settings... I sort of liked the Birthright world and what they attempted with it's political game and low magic, sort of Highlander sort of Tolkienesque qualities. But it had to have been a big part of what sunk TSR. I remember other ridiculous things: a monster manual that was actually a ringed binder with creatures on loose leaf sheets! The thought was that people would expand the thing over time, temporarily removing what creatures they needed for a given module. The problems with lost or damaged sheets are obvious enough. That having failed, they finally came out with a more traditional manual a few years later, but it contained probably the worst art I've ever seen in a d&d product. They initially caved into the whacked out, religious conservatives and kept demons/devils out of the manual all together... they would only appear later on the silly loose leaf sheets. Or Dave "Zeb" Cook rationalizing away the core barbarian class calling barbarism a socioeconomic condition unfit as the basis for a class.

 

Overjoyed? Because that's what I felt. I played 2nd Ed. for 11 years and couldn't wait to be rid of it.

 

But you could run around in a loin cloth in Dark Sun!

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Too tempting to make a joke about Sawyer running around in a loin cloth. But I'm not on such terms with these gentlemen.

Edited by Tale

"Show me a man who "plays fair" and I'll show you a very talented cheater."

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There are still people around who miss 2e?

 

Jesus.

 

There are people who still PLAY 2e.

 

Not because it's good, but because, frankly, 3e just isn't better...

 

And because there was no way to convert on-going 2e campaigns to 3e without screwing the players over royally.

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I haven't pnp'ed in quite a long time, but really, I don't get the love for 2e that people have. I started with 1st edition, and 2nd edition came out and it was somewhat better, but was still really bad for many, many reasons. By the time 3e came out, I was out of pnp'ing, but I bought the books and I was blown away at how much better it was. It changed alot of things, but it still felt like DnD. Going from 1e -> 2e was like going from 5 1/4" floppies to 3 1/2" floppies, while 2e->3e was like going from vhs->dvd. Sure they both were improvements, but one was incremental while another was revolutionary.

 

I won't get into why 2e was so bad, but it boggles the mind that people think it is a better system...

 

But back to 4th edition... when I first heard about this, I went over to enworld and read about it, and I don't really know what to think yet. Yeah, it isn't out, so all the details aren't there, and yeah I don't pnp anymore so it won't affect me (except for computer games), but I'm not sure. I have a couple misgivings, on that it is AWFULLY close to their revision to 3.5 (and you can't tell me they weren't in talking about going a new edition when they were putting out 3.5). Also, they let playtesters give reports to the public about 4e, but only let them say positive things about the system which seems....odd. I know PR is important to control, but that is just.....odd. But what is more offputting is the stylistic changes they are making that seem mostly cosmetic and makes it feel like a different setting and system: adding Dragonborn and Tieflings and core races (oddly), splitting elves between eldarin and elves, having a 'warlord' class (I don't care about the function here, just the name sucks) along with a warlock class, no gnomes or half-orcs, wizards are pretty much evokers, halflings are alot like kender and like to ride on boats, and other things like that. Look, I've read reasons why they made those changes individually, but it seems like the amount of changes to the core feel of DnD is.....odd.

 

Plus, and this is really really strange, in one of the preview books apparently the writers used the overused the word 'cool' to describe everything (I didn't read the books, but this was mentioned by alot of people). Some people were put off by this because it sounded like they were trying to jam 'this is cool!!!" down their throats, and besides thought it didn't sound professional. This caused alot of uproar, and one of the designers thought it would be funny to make a list of appropriate alternatives to the word 'cool' for future description. This not only totally missed the point, but felt a bit condescending and douchey. Plus, the post was forced and not funny.

 

But whatever, I'll only ever see it in passing whenever The 4th Edition Black Hound comes out, unless they come out with a new edition in 4-6 years (which appears likely).

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I haven't pnp'ed in quite a long time, but really, I don't get the love for 2e that people have. I started with 1st edition, and 2nd edition came out and it was somewhat better, but was still really bad for many, many reasons. By the time 3e came out, I was out of pnp'ing, but I bought the books and I was blown away at how much better it was. It changed alot of things, but it still felt like DnD. Going from 1e -> 2e was like going from 5 1/4" floppies to 3 1/2" floppies, while 2e->3e was like going from vhs->dvd. Sure they both were improvements, but one was incremental while another was revolutionary.

 

I won't get into why 2e was so bad, but it boggles the mind that people think it is a better system...

 

Who says it was better?

 

Of course we needed a 3e. 2e was horribly outdated. Trouble is:

 

1. 3e was a different game (and I know people who play and like 3e who say so)

 

2. While it fixed some of the notably crap parts of 2e, it easily introduced as many new ones...

 

3. While 2e can be excused to some extend for its age, 3e was still horribly, inexcusably outdated for its time. I can accept a horribly rigid, inflexible system coming out in the late 90s. I cannot accept a horribly rigid, inflexible system coming out in 2000. And frankly, 2e Player Option rules were less rigid than 3e and 3.5e. Looks to be less rigid than 4e, too, from what I can tell...

 

4. 3e did not feel as much like a revolution as it did an inquisition, with 2e material being exorcised from the pages of Dungeon and Dragon in the holy war against those who would not convert...

Edited by Jediphile

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4. 3e did not feel as much like a revolution as it did an inquisition, with 2e material being exorcised from the pages of Dungeon and Dragon in the holy war against those who would not convert...

Wow, just....wow. That explains a lot.

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4. 3e did not feel as much like a revolution as it did an inquisition, with 2e material being exorcised from the pages of Dungeon and Dragon in the holy war against those who would not convert...

What the heck? What's so hard about using 2nd Ed. source material in 3E? Just rebuild the characters.

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What the heck? What's so hard about using 2nd Ed. source material in 3E? Just rebuild the characters.

 

dude, you're so naive ... it's a different edition.

Edited by newc0253

dumber than a bag of hammers

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So?

 

Use the same character concept, background, and story, then just fill in the game mechanics.

 

BOOM! Instant conversion.

Edited by Sand

Murphy's Law of Computer Gaming: The listed minimum specifications written on the box by the publisher are not the minimum specifications of the game set by the developer.

 

@\NightandtheShape/@ - "Because you're a bizzare strange deranged human?"

Walsingham- "Sand - always rushing around, stirring up apathy."

Joseph Bulock - "Another headache, courtesy of Sand"

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3. While 2e can be excused to some extend for its age, 3e was still horribly, inexcusably outdated for its time. I can accept a horribly rigid, inflexible system coming out in the late 90s. I cannot accept a horribly rigid, inflexible system coming out in 2000. And frankly, 2e Player Option rules were less rigid than 3e and 3.5e. Looks to be less rigid than 4e, too, from what I can tell...

 

A radically different system could really have come out by the year 1990 or so. D&D had been around for over 15 years and systems like GURPs, MERP, Call of Cthulu, and many many others had existed through-out the 80's. Instead, they produced a sanitized version of the same game, removing alot of the things people liked or that gave the game flavor(monks/barbarians, the devil princes, etc) and getting rid of blatantly bad rules(like the ranger's +1 damage vs giants per level!). Due to mismanagement, or whatever, another 10 years would have to pass before the radical changes, and a new game, would be made. Before his ouster from the company, Gygax had been around for the initial planning of the 2nd edition, and I've always wondered how it would have turned out had he been in charge, or at least had substantial input.

 

And of course a class based system is going to be rigid, but people like the archetypes, especially in high fantasy. Take something low or non fantasy, like Fallout, and archetypes don't matter so much.

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So?

 

Use the same character concept, background, and story, then just fill in the game mechanics.

 

BOOM! Instant conversion.

 

Fine. How do I convert an dwarven fighter/cleric level 11/11 from 2e to 3e?

 

Answer: You can't. The character does not have enough experience to be level 22, which is what 3e rules would dictate, so he would either lose a lot of his warrior skill in an effort to make him a cleric of a comparable level, or he would have to lose a lot of spell-potential from his priest class in order to give him decent warrior ability.

 

Yes, I like 3e multi-class rules better, but they are not compatible with the earlier games called D&D.

 

Then there is the minotaur fighter. Both 2e and 3e allow that, but they are totally different. In 2e, the character was just a fighter with some massive modifiers (good and bad). In 3e, however, being a minotaur counts as having eight or so levels, reducing the level potential proportionately. The character was built specifically towards using a large weapon in each hand in combat, which required traits/abilities like ambidexterity. Beyond that, the character had focus on Strength and Constitution, and in order to achieve that goal, other stats were sacrificed, including Dexterity, which was fairly low (7, IIRC). However, in 3e, you cannot take ambidexterity feat unless you have a fairly high Dex, and since the characer would lose fighter levels in the exchange as well, the player did not want to convert, and I can't blame him. Oh, and this is a person who plays and enjoys 3.5e today, I should add.

 

2e-to-3e conversion works only for single-classed characters that do stray from the basic norms in any way. As soon as you look to multi-class or odd race/class combinations (which are allowed in 2e), the option to convert goes south quickly.

 

Besides, given the highly average quality of 3e, there wasn't much point... Converting to a new edition is not a goal onto itself to me. Especially not when it forces me to choose between my campaign and the new rules. In that case, the new rules will always, always lose.

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And of course a class based system is going to be rigid, but people like the archetypes, especially in high fantasy. Take something low or non fantasy, like Fallout, and archetypes don't matter so much.

 

This is true, of course. But 2e Player Option rules allowed a lot of the classes to "infringe" a bit on the territory of other classes. A priest could take weapon specialization, but he would lose spell potential for it. A rogue could take the warrior's to-hit progression, if he was willing to sacrifice some of his usual thieving skills in the deal. It wasn't a classless game, but it was the step just before it.

 

3e, however, made the classes more rigid than 2e did. In 2e, you could take proficiencies outside your class, you just had to pay a bit more for the first increase, whereas in 3e, you have to pay double for the cross-class skills for each increase in rank, making it very clear that you really shouldn't take skills outside your class. And if you do, they really won't be much good anyway, since skills "scale" in 3e, unlike in 2e. In 2e, using a proficiency was always at the same basic level, meaning that if you got it to a decent value, you did not have to increase it more to keep it useful. Getting it there could be costly, but that's the price, of course. Not so in 3e. In 3e, everything is progressive, even skills, so if you want a skill to be useful, then you must build it to the maximum constantly - your 5 ranks of concentration might have been pretty good, when you were level 6, but once you reach level 12, it's virtually useless. And since skill ranks are linked to class and level in 3e, the progress is forced on the player.

 

That's one thing that really bugs me in 3e. 2e and even the original D&D might have been just a rigid, but they were at least up-front and honest about it - no denying it. 3e, however, imposes these restrictions clandesinely under the guise of wanting to appear flexible in the spirit of "hey, if you don't want to build that skill, then you don't have to". No, but it'll just be a useless waste of skill points if you don't, which the rules don't bother to tell you...

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Actually, Jediphile, the dwarf you described as being 11/11 Fighter/Cleric would not be 22nd level in 3e. He would be 11th level, most likely 4 levels of fighter and 6 levels of cleric. Besides back when it went from 2e to 3e the best choice was to close down the 2e campaign to a satisfactory conclusion and start a brand new campaign with fresh 1st level characters in 3e. Thats what I did with transitioning from 1e to 2e, 2e to 3e, and 3e to 3.5e.


Murphy's Law of Computer Gaming: The listed minimum specifications written on the box by the publisher are not the minimum specifications of the game set by the developer.

 

@\NightandtheShape/@ - "Because you're a bizzare strange deranged human?"

Walsingham- "Sand - always rushing around, stirring up apathy."

Joseph Bulock - "Another headache, courtesy of Sand"

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So?

 

Use the same character concept, background, and story, then just fill in the game mechanics.

 

BOOM! Instant conversion.

 

Fine. How do I convert an dwarven fighter/cleric level 11/11 from 2e to 3e?

 

I would make the character a fighter/cleric gestalt at level 11.

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The irony is that he's complaining about 3E being completely rigid and inflexable because he's being completely rigid and inflexable about it.


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(Approved by Fio, so feel free to use it)

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Actually, Jediphile, the dwarf you described as being 11/11 Fighter/Cleric would not be 22nd level in 3e. He would be 11th level, most likely 4 levels of fighter and 6 levels of cleric. Besides back when it went from 2e to 3e the best choice was to close down the 2e campaign to a satisfactory conclusion and start a brand new campaign with fresh 1st level characters in 3e. Thats what I did with transitioning from 1e to 2e, 2e to 3e, and 3e to 3.5e.

 

ALL TOGEATHER NOW! "1e and a 2e and a 3e!"


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"I'm a programmer at a games company... REET GOOD!" - Me

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2nd edition players option skills & powers was a book of bad rules... You could do stuff like ban a character from ever using potions and gain a range boost on all spells. Don't know if he tries drinking, chokes, and gurgles it up like jungle juice or what, but nope, no more potions... All sorts of things like this in there. And keep in mind that these player's option books came out in '95 about 6 years after the core books, well after TSR had begun it's downslide, and don't really reflect what 2ed was. They are in a world of their own.

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