March 16, 2012

5E Friday

- I will have to assume that the DDI software (Character Builder, Monster Builder) is basically done at this point for 4E. Their development team has shown in the past that they can not do two jobs at once (such as maintaining the off line tools while creating the on-line tools or working on the Virtual Table) so I have to assume they are working full-time on creating whatever software tools WotC has decided 5E will need.

They did update the Character Builder for Heroes of the Elemental Chaos and will likely update for any DDI articles, though even those of late have been system neutral (Talking the Talk, Roll Dem Bones) or statless (Skullport). As well as the decided lack of content such as adventures.
[Honestly if I wasn't still running a 4E campaign and if my players didn't like the Character Builder, I would have stopped my subscription already.]

- Rule of Three this week talked about combat interrupts. Personally, I like them and feel they are one of the best things to come out of 4E. I am not a fan of sitting around bored until it is your turn to act. I have seen too many players zone out, first from the combat then from the night and then from the campaign. By allowing an option of a character going even when it is not their turn, it keeps the player paying attention. Do they act/interrupt or hold off? Players are making choices even when it is not their turn.

It also helps with immersion. A fight becomes more dynamic. It is not simply a character standing around waiting idly until its his "turn" to act. I know narratively the action is constant, but rules without allowed interruptions do not reflect this.

-One thing that many people are overlooking in the discussions on 5E (or at least not blogging much about) is that WotC has been running blogs on various topics on the potential design of 5E. These blog posts are not part of their "regular" 5E discussions such as Rule of Three or Legends & Lore. The best part of these posts is that a person can in effect comment on play-test material without being in the play-test. Here are some of the blogs in the past couple of weeks.
Hit Points: A discussion on starting hit points.
The Role of Skills: They have already stated that they are looking to replace much of the work that skills accomplish with ability rolls instead and having skills instead act as augments to those ability rolls.
Deadly Dice: This one deals with the question of how lethal should D&D be. Should player death be common or less so?
Sneak Attack: Here they ask the question, Is sneak attack integral to the rogue/thief class?
Save or Die II: Die and Die Again!: Further discussion on the topic of Save or Die.

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