11 responses to “Dungeons & Dragons 5th Edition – System Mastery 150

  1. I think that a lot of those “They took out all those rules and now I can roleplay better” comments are coming from people who are consciously or subconsciously comparing 5e to 3.whatever: 5e has, not unfairly, been referred to as basically a simplified 3e framework, and the main alternative on the market at the moment is Pathfinder which is basically just 3.5 with some tweaks.

    I think the “less rules = better” sentiment makes a lot more sense in that context in that 3rd edition and its various derivatives are really starting to show their age compared to more recently released rpgs and a lot of the rules that are missing when you compare it to 5e are ones that were needlessly complicated, clunky or counter intuitive.

    The sad thing is that I think Mearls and co’s attempts to pretend 3e have largely been successful in that a lot of people currently playing D&D never actually played 4th Edition and just sort of vaguely know it was “The Bad Edition” because that’s the group think they’ve gotten from the internet.

    There’s also the fact that D&D has become to rpgs what Band-aids are to adhesive strips: For a lot of people D&D is the only role-playing game that actually exists. A lot of people would probably be better served by playing other, more rules-lite games that emphasize the parts of the experience they enjoy, but stick with D&D because it’s either their comfort zone or they aren’t aware there are other types of rpgs out there.

  2. Zak S must be positively fuming at the implication that he was playing 4e… while shitting his pants at Chik-Fil-A on the last day of Gen Con ‘17.

  3. mmhhh i love it . long time listener first time commentor . i have a lot to dislike for 5th but my biggest grip is people who act like its the perfect be all and end all system . but its not it has meany flaws. and thank you for pointing them out . fanboys will allways be fanboys but its nice to know others feel the same way.

  4. On the note of you complaints on people saying this system is so much better for roleplay, I’d just like to point out that you entirely skipped over the parts of the book that heavily emphasize character and story. Backgrounds, a framework for personality, all that fun stuff. Y’know, the stuff that actually makes 5e better than other editions for the purposes of roleplay. Maybe not better than other rules light systems, but there are plenty of people who play d&d for the cultural zeitgeist rather than because they actually like ttrpg’s.

  5. maybe we will see a 5.5e some day wherein the feats are better/better implemented and all the corrections and online errata crap get sorted through and put together

  6. Huge fan of 5e personally (I’d go so far as to say it’s my favorite edition,) and it’s what my group plays most often, but my complaints about 5e are just about exactly the same as the ones you present in the favorite/least favorite bit. It’s not a perfect game by any stretch, but I houserule the crap out of just about any game I run and it’s provided a great jumping-off point for that, and our group has a ton of fun with it.

  7. Hey, in my podcast app, called ‘sodes for iOS, episodes 150 and 152 do not appear. I was thinking you were mot making them regularly anymore until I realized the list jumped from 149 to 151. RSS problem? Thought I would mention it in case something is wrong.

  8. Revisiting this episode I think I realized an explanation for at least some of the people who have affinity for playing level 1 characters: I think that at least some of the people who sing the praises of 1st level are fans not so much of the mechanical workings of those characters as they’re fans of the scope of what characters are doing at lower tiers of play in D&D. Once you start getting into higher levels the narrative abilities of the characters start becoming increasingly grandiose (especially the spellcasters) and the scope of the types of plots they’re getting into become more and more epic.

    I think a decent segment of the “level 1 all day e’ry day people” are less into the idea of being a saddy dumpus and more they just prefer the scenario of “I am a wandering sword man dealing with local goblins tipping over fruit carts” over “I am a mighty hero of the realm who will save the land from eldritch horrors!”, and don’t realize there are other systems that are designed to allow lower-stakes fantasy narratives without nerfing the overall range of mechanical options the players have.

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