Tuesday, 10 January 2012

D&D 5e - IT COMES...

So, Wizards of The Coast has announced that it is currently working on 5e.

Which is kinda... shitty. Mostly because they made us put up with 3rd edition for, what, 8 years? 4e's only got 3, almost 4 years under its belt, during which it's been revamped (the Essentials line, derisively referred to as "D&D 4.5"). It's suffered from constant updates and errata (some coming scant weeks after the product in question, like they knew it was going to have to be done), a severe lack of third-party content (a consequence of 3.5's Open Game Licence, and the "Torrent of Shite" that followed, and WotC's subsequent tightening of the licence), the poor quality of some products (most of the modules were critically bashed, as were some of the sourcebooks, like Heroes of Shadow and its well-meaning, but ultimately flawed Vampire Class) and being continually compared to its predecessor. All in all, it's not been a great three years.

(Don't let these criticisms fool you into thinking I don't like 4e -  the well-crafted class balance, the interesting fluff for the "Points of Light" setting, the Skill Challenge mechanic, V-shaped stats - they all have their problems, sure, but to my mind, it's a vast improvement on 3rd, and so totally different to older editions that it's not worth comparing them - apples and oranges, so to speak).

So, along comes 5e, and by this point, most people have stopped caring. What used to be"the D&D fanbase" has become further split, into "Old Schoolers", playing retroclones (or, just... retro), the 3/3.5 adherents, the Pathfinder crowd, and those who play 4e. There's some overlap, sure, but not a lot. So all 5e is going to do is push another group together even smaller than the last, and fill RPG boards with even more pointless Edition Warring.

And the only source we have to go on, regarding what will be present in 5e? Monte Cook's articles on the Wizards site. Yeah, those ones I bitched about last year.

... Things aren't looking up for poor old Wizards, huh?

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