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Wizards of the Coast 4E Interview at The Escapist

Discussion in 'Game/SP News & Comments' started by chevalier, Mar 10, 2010.

  1. chevalier

    chevalier Knight of Everfull Chalice ★ SPS Account Holder Veteran

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    [​IMG]The fourth edition of the Dungeons & Dragons ruleset has spurred much controversy, being seen by some as a radical departure from what was characteristic of D&D and by some others as a necessary step. The Escapist has conducted an interview with Andy Collins and Liz Schuh from Wizards of the Coast about this. Here's a snip:

    AM: What is the audience for today's Dungeons and Dragons, and how is that different from the audience for my Dungeons and Dragons, growing up in the '80s and early '90s?

    AC: One thing we certainly saw over the course of 2nd edition was the audience did tend to age along with the game. The game was a very playable, a very entertaining system, but it didn't necessarily speak to the people who were coming up into the optimal RPG age category through new ways. When we were all playing 1st and 2nd Edition, we didn't cut our teeth on MMOs or console gaming or Facebook or any of those things. At best, maybe we had experience playing Monopoly or games like that, Risk, so that D&D was a totally foreign thing. That's just not true anymore.

    People today, the young kids today, are coming into exposure from D&D after having playing games that have very similar themes, often have very similar mechanics ... they understand the concepts of the game. So in some ways they are much more advanced as potential game players. But in other ways, they are also coming from a background that is short attention span, perhaps, less likely interested in reading the rules of the game before playing.

    And I'm not just talking about younger players now, but anybody. I know when I jump into a new console game, for instance, the last thing I want to do is read the book. I want to start playing. And that's a relatively new development in game playing and game learning. And we've been working to adapt to that, the changing expectations of the new gamer.


    Read the rest at The Escapist.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 19, 2015
  2. Blades of Vanatar

    Blades of Vanatar Vanatar will rise again Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

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    That's crap. Most of the players are intelligent. They want to read the book 1st, so they can actually understand how the game works. It makes it so much more enjoyable when you know what is actually going on. The above is their excuse/reasoning for going WoW-like? D&D in itself is NOT a console game and to compare the two is idiotic. D&D is a PnP game, played by people who enjoy gaming altogether, not just Console games. Meh... Wotc really killed it wihen they went this route. My guess they saved money by cutting staff, as any idiot off the street could of made the 4th edition system. :rolleyes:
     
  3. Thrasher91604

    Thrasher91604 For those who know ...

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    Yes, very lame. Sad for them to think that no one wants to learn the rules before playing a game. Rules define the game.
     
  4. Taluntain

    Taluntain Resident Alpha and Omega Staff Member ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) BoM XenForo Migration Contributor [2015] (for helping support the migration to new forum software!)

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    I think that's more wishful thinking than reality. The reality with the majority of kids today is just what Collins said. Short attention spans, not wanting to read anything if at all possible, practically living on the Internet (Facebook and Myspace) and playing MMOs. Kids that don't fit at least a part of this stereotype and are actually interested in D&D are in the minority. You can be sure that WotC does enough research to know in what direction they need to go in order to bring in new paying customers. You either adapt to the changing market or you go out of business. Older D&D players haven't changed much, but expecting the young Internet generation to be the same as them is unrealistic.
     
  5. Thrasher91604

    Thrasher91604 For those who know ...

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    Then it is not as much of a game, as a simulator.
     
  6. Taluntain

    Taluntain Resident Alpha and Omega Staff Member ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) BoM XenForo Migration Contributor [2015] (for helping support the migration to new forum software!)

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    Does it really make a difference in the end? Overall, the aim of the game is to have fun. Now I know full well that many people can't properly enjoy D&D unless it's complicated enough that your average Joe would need a few weeks to grasp the basics. But the trend of making things easier to use is present everywhere today - the Internet as well. It's not always a bad thing when it saves you precious time, at least in my mind. The older D&D versions aren't going anywhere, and there's enough AD&D material to last anyone several lifetimes. A bit less for 3/3.5e, but still a few decades' worth. So if you prefer those versions, it's not really like you're lacking the material to enjoy them...
     
  7. Thrasher91604

    Thrasher91604 For those who know ...

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    Fun for some, maybe boring to someone else. It's all a matter of preferences. If most of the rest of the market doesn't have the same as I, it's their loss. ;)
     
  8. Rawgrim Gems: 21/31
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    I suspect they will lose alot more customers than they gained, by making 4ed a WoW clone. I doubt their target-group will want to play pen and paper, if it means they have to stop playing WoW on their comps for awhile. They are also losing a huge group of customers that were fans of the older editions.
     
  9. Blades of Vanatar

    Blades of Vanatar Vanatar will rise again Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

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    Tal I disagree. :) Kids that play D&D have always been the minority. By going this way, they completely abandoned their fan base for a new field of customers. Losing your base to attract new is a risky policy and never one that is assured success, but more often assured failure. The D&D world only attracts a small % of the population as it is, why divide it up further? Unless, of course, you are already losing your ass. Then any gamble is worth it I guess.
     
  10. Taluntain

    Taluntain Resident Alpha and Omega Staff Member ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) BoM XenForo Migration Contributor [2015] (for helping support the migration to new forum software!)

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    I'll have to disagree with you as well. :shake: I assume you didn't become interested in D&D in your mid-thirties. Most of the 30 or 40-somethings playing D&D today got into it in their teens. If you don't assure an influx of young new customers today, you aren't going to have a base in their 30/40s in 10 or 20 years. I'll hazard a guess that most grandpas and grandmas don't play as much D&D any more (if at all) as they did when they were younger. So if WotC only focused on their mature base, they'd only profit from them for a few more years. Once they had more important things occupying their time (like grandchildren), WotC would a) lose their mature base and b) not have a young base any more.

    Ideally, you'd have two versions of D&D, an easier and a harder one. But if that's not possible, a compromise is the best that can be achieved. Naturally, a good number of people will complain that it is still too hard, or way too dumbed down. But that's the nature of the beast.
     
  11. Tillix Gems: 5/31
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    Interesting discussion, that, especially if D&D players are or INTEND to be a minority.

    When I started reading Tolkien (which brought me into D&D later), i was a weirdo out of two in my class. (The other one made me read it ;) )
    Not a complete nerd, but still, if i had to explain "it's about dwarves and elves and..." i got severall :nuts: -looks

    and... i liked it! It was like a secret meeting when we played D&D and it felt great.
    The same with Computer games, HOMM series or even baldurs gate was only known by a minority.

    Then they made the Lotr-movies and started Wow, and things changed! The genre at least is a huge business know, and gets the attention some think it always deserved.

    Even for me it is hard to position myself somewhere between the millions of online rpgs and the real cool stuff. I guess D&D is struggeling at the very same point.

    I watched the vids with these comic writers playing D&D and it seems to me that Wotc compromises not so badly, though.
     
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2010
  12. Rawgrim Gems: 21/31
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    Its not d&d anymore, thats the problem. It doesn`t even look like d&d. Even the monster manual looks like a collection of pokemon cards.
     
  13. Taluntain

    Taluntain Resident Alpha and Omega Staff Member ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) BoM XenForo Migration Contributor [2015] (for helping support the migration to new forum software!)

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    I think the major problem here is the longevity of AD&D... it stuck mostly unchanged for so long that dozens of thousands of players grew up with it and accept it as de facto D&D - no changes allowed. But once WotC took over with 3/3.5e and subsequent development, D&D started changing and evolving relatively fast. Many people didn't even want to accept 3e, let alone 4e and so on. So I perfectly understand the "it's not D&D any more" sentiment. But to be honest, it'd be more accurate if the comments were "it's not D&D that I got to know and love any more"...
     
  14. Gaear

    Gaear ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful

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    I think that's pretty accurate. Most old school D&D people I know simply stay with AD&D, as Tal suggested. They probably wouldn't even update to another version even if it were viable to them in the sense AD&D (or first edition) is, because it's a needless restructuring of a game they're already playing, and they'd have to shell out money for all the new books. Why do that?

    Thus, as for 4e, the market is clearly in the younger audience, so it would be kind of foolish not to cater to them. The younger audience has firmly seated WoW sensibilities now, so imo it's a forgone conclusion that D&D will evolve to look like WoW.

    No biggie though. P&P fans can still do that in whatever edition they like, and there are old CRPGs available in AD&D and 3.0/5e. Let the kids have 4th edition.
     
  15. Blades of Vanatar

    Blades of Vanatar Vanatar will rise again Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

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    When I started playing, yes, back in my early teens, there was different types of D&D. There was Basic Dungeons & Dragons(5 boxed sets), for the newbies crowd and Advanced Dungeons & Dragons(the rest), for the hardcore fans. That's the problem. Now they are only making content for the dumbed-down version. Or combined the two into a dumb-downed version of the greater game. Whichever way you want to look at it.
     
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2010
  16. Rawgrim Gems: 21/31
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    All of the 3.5ed books got pulled from the shelves as soon as 4ed came out too. Making them more than a little tough to find (at least where I live). Kind of a crap thing to do really. Trying to just "cutt off", their customers of the previous edition, and leaving just the new edition available.
     
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  17. Montresor

    Montresor Mostly Harmless Staff Member ★ SPS Account Holder

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    I did a quick check and you can get new & used D&D books for 2nd and 3.5th edition through Amazon. :)

    BTW, this is how other companies (none mentioned, none forgotten;)) do when they release a new version of a product (like, to take a completely random example, a software product): Pull the old version from the shelves and start urging existing clients to upgrade. I have heard it called "Planned obsolescence".
     
  18. Blades of Vanatar

    Blades of Vanatar Vanatar will rise again Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

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    Prior versions of D&D could easily be incorporated into the next edition, until 4th edition was released. It's a complete change to prior editions. TSR never abandoned their following and neither did Wizards with 3rd, they just expanded your options(ex. Dwarf Wizard option, etc...). 4th went in a completely different direction and I'm sure their sales are suffering for it.
     
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