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    Canonfire :: View topic - The non-GH 4e thread!
    Canonfire Forum Index -> Greyhawk- D&D 4th Edition
    The non-GH 4e thread!
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    Adept Greytalker

    Joined: Jun 29, 2001
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    Wed Aug 15, 2007 6:11 pm  
    The non-GH 4e thread!

    Quote:
    Hello All.

    The announcement of 4th Edition is a pretty big event for all RPG fans. It's a huge event for all of us at Wizards of the Coast, including WotC staff and our WizO support team. We understand that this is something many of you are going to feel very passionate about in a number of ways.

    We've created this forum for few reasons. We want everyone to have a single discussion forum where they can get answers and information directly from the D&D staff. We also want to prevent the other forums from being overwhelmed with 4E posts to the point that it drowns out any of the natural discussion in those areas. Additionally, I want to have a single forum where our community can post their hopes, fears, concerns, and dreams about 4E. This will make it easier for the D&D staff to read community feedback, and to (hopefully) provide a lot of answers to your questions.

    The WizOs will be moderating this forum and others. They are acting on the direction of Wizards of the Coast, so if you're upset with their moderation, please don't take it out on the WizOs. Their goals will be clear: Keep 4th Edition discussion in the 4E forum. This might mean locking threads and/or moving posts.

    If you have concerns, questions, or issues about the forum moderation taking place after the 4th Edition announcement, I've created a thread here where you may discuss your concerns.

    Finally, please try to be respectful in your posts and comments. Be nice to other posters, the WizOs, and WotC staff. The WizOs will be enforcing all Code of Conduct rules on all forums as usual.

    If you have any suggestions or ideas on how I can do a better job of helping to facilitate communication between the D&D Staff and the Community, I've created a thread here.

    Thanks!
    -Mike
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    Mike Lescault
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    The 4e forum on wotc/gleemax:
    http://forums.gleemax.com/forumdisplay.php?f=686
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    Wed Aug 15, 2007 7:20 pm  

    Hey folks,
    At least until after GenCon, when more is known about 4e and the CF staff is all back on duty, keep all 4e talk to this thread to avoid clutter amid the regular topics.

    Thanks.
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    Rich,
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    Thu Aug 16, 2007 12:59 am  

    But what's wrong with 3.5? I don't have any problems with it, so why do we need a new system?
    Master Greytalker

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    Thu Aug 16, 2007 1:34 am  

    If a new system comes out it will be so that WOTC can make more money.

    They are possibly getting to the point of having a tough time coming up with new hardcover ideas for the future. Keep in mind that any book is probably planned out and being written at least a year before it sees the bookshelf. If they are having a tough time coming up with product ideas for say 2009 on, then it is time to start over.

    Anyone notice the increase in modules lately. When 3rd edition came out WOTC printed just a few modules in the first year or two (about 10 total), then once in a very great while (many months later) you might get one more module. Now in the last year or so they suddenly start publishing more again (more than their original number). The upswing in modules might be because they are having a tough time with new product ideas for the future.

    Also, with a new edition it is more than likely they will exhaust Forgetton Realms and Ebberon and move on to a new world to introduce with the new edition. Again, more sales (at least in their minds).

    A new set of rules requires everyone who wants to keep up with the game to buy completely new material covering the core rules. In addition it gives them the opportunity to reprint all of the monsters again, asking people to re-buy them as well in order to keep up. Finally, all of the extra supplement rules we find in the race books, complete series books, and so on which provide all of the extras that couldn't fit into the core rules also be re-purchased.

    It isn't about making a better game system. Sure they may think they can do better (and they probably can, heck a lot of people could make a better set of rules) but that is secondary to earning more dollars.

    First edition outgrew itself so they re-packaged it to sell more than came up with a bunch of ideas for extra books. They were in soft bound books because TSR didn't think anyone would pay more hardcover books. WOTC acquired the company and radiacally changed the game to make it their own and promote sales. It worked. The first 3rd edition supplements were again softbound. Then they took a leap....lets see if they buy more hardcover books, if it works we will make more money. They tried it and it worked. Now after 50 books plus in hardcover, they are feeling like...."Where do we go from here, we used up all of our ideas, Oh I know, lets start all over again". "But why should we do that?" So we can make more money!".

    Am I making my point? Anyone agree? Anyone disagree?
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    Eileen of Greyhawk, Prophet of Istus, Messenger of the Gods
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    Thu Aug 16, 2007 1:35 am  

    Oh and I forgot to mention.......starting over allows WOTC to make a compatible electronic version or electronic supplements as well. Why....so they can make more money.
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    Eileen of Greyhawk, Prophet of Istus, Messenger of the Gods
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    Thu Aug 16, 2007 4:16 am  

    *sigh*

    Maybe I've started getting cynical in my twenties, but that has the ring of truth to it Eileen. I was kinda hoping that I wouldn't get cynical until middle age. :(
    Master Greytalker

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    Thu Aug 16, 2007 5:09 am  

    3e was an improvement but it is getting top heavy and confusing as the pcs go up in levels - I hate all those spells lasting minutes and hours that of which I have to keep track. An online tracker might be helpful though.

    It's impossible to guage whether 4.0 will be any better until we see the basics in December.
    Master Greytalker

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    Thu Aug 16, 2007 5:11 am  

    Of course they're trying to make more money. They're a business. If WotC doesn't make money, then they don't make products. If they don't make products, then you can't buy them.

    I don't fault WotC for wanting to make money. A company is made of people, and people like to get raises. They like to be rewarded for their efforts, and they deserve to be rewarded for their efforts. Would you do your job if you weren't getting paid? If they come up with a way to make more money and improve the lives of their families, then more power to 'em.

    If I fault WotC for anything, it's for not caring about their loyal customers enough. I think they could have done a much better job of tailoring their products and their PR to match the desires of their customer base. Their marketing strategy is now aimed at getting new customers at the expense of their old ones. It's a little like having your wife leave you for a younger guy. Kinda hurts.
    Adept Greytalker

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    Thu Aug 16, 2007 5:34 am  

    Hey all,

    Here is a bit more details... looks like new PH in May 2008:

    http://theminiaturespage.com/news/519193/

    Bryan Blumklotz
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    Thu Aug 16, 2007 6:02 am  

    i mostly agree on the ideas about 4th ed being more commercial than systems upgrade.

    as we all know, WotC was much more commercial than TSR. they didn't just publish hardcover and more expensive books, they rewamped the whole ruleset as to appeal a younger and wider audience. dull settings (no GH, planescape or darksun), more hack and slash, more powerplay, less character and story development and less roleplaying.

    now, i think that this failed to be succesful in the long term, since nearly all the people who prefer hack and slash RPGing now play online MMOs, mainly the (in)famous World of Warcraft. on the other hand, people who were more roleplay oriented moved to other systems like WoD, exalted, GURPS etc...

    now i see two paths for 4th ed, if it will be any different than 3rd.

    most probably and pessimistically, they will make it WoW, played tabletop. you've probably seen the knight class, it was a WoW warrior converted to DnD. aggro, taunt, dps, heal and stuff... will be pure action, level up, collect item sets etc...

    very unlikely but optimistically, seeing tabletop rpgs are for real rpers now, they will make radical changes and focus on roleplaying and atmosphere. they have strong background and material to do this. they might even publish GH, darksun, birthright and planescape books again.

    the only thing that attracts my attention about 4th ed is the slimmest possibilty of the second.
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    Thu Aug 16, 2007 7:15 am  


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    Thu Aug 16, 2007 7:34 am  

    theminiaturespage.com wrote:
    The 4th Edition rules emphasize faster game play, offer exciting new character options


    In my cynical eye, this means that the WoW-ization of D&D continues apace. Crunch is favored over character. D&D has always been a combat-and-action-oriented game, but I've not seen it be so unabashedly geared to powergamers as 3.X is.

    Quote:
    D&D Insider includes a character creator that lets players design and equip their D&D characters, dungeon- and adventure-building tools for Dungeon Masters,


    OK, useful, but it probably won't have any meaning for those who want to use 3.5 (and assuredly no meaning for those using 1st Editon or 2nd Editon AD&D).

    Quote:
    online magazine content,


    So they killed Dragon and Dungeon so they could bring out a new and "improved" 4E magazine online?

    Quote:
    and a digital game table that lets you play 24/7 on the internet — the perfect option for anyone who can't find time to get together.


    Or those who are so addicted to MMORPGs that they won't leave their house to meet with D&D-playing friends or even failing that seek out a local RPGA group. Again, it's the WoW-ization of the tabletop game. "If you cn't beat WoW, join WoW."

    Quote:
    Wizards of the Coast will release two 4th Edition preview books in December and January — Wizards Presents: Classes and Races and Wizards Presents: Worlds and Monsters.


    Who wants to bet that the worlds will be Forgotten Realms and Eberron again?

    Quote:
    The first live demos of 4th Edition will happen at the D&D Experience gaming convention in Washington D.C. in February 2008. The full scope of 4th Edition books, miniatures, and adventures will be available in the spring and summer of 2008.


    About the only thing that those of us who want to play the previous and current editions can use right off the bat would be the minis.

    My own thoughts: I'm a relatively long-standing gamer. I cut my teeth playing in junior high with AD&D 2nd Edition and the old WEG Star Wars d6 System game. I went along with 3E, and 3.5. I've played in all three major editions of D&D by now. Unless they really wow me with the new system, I'm not sure I'll follow them into a fourth.
    Master Greytalker

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    Thu Aug 16, 2007 9:22 am  

    Bubbagump:
    I completely understand where your coming from in regards to WOTC wanting more money. I realize that a paycheck is why almost everyone takes a job. No critisism to your point, everyone is out to make money in order to have a better life, I understand this.

    Here's my point:

    WOTC seem to think that our pockets our lined with gold and we carry everfull purses. I for one do not. I invested heavily into 1st edition shortly after D&D came out. I bought just a few items for 2nd edition and didn't play much of it, but I did regularly keep up on looking at products on the shelves to see what was happening and at the time I was playing Top Secret/S.I. I decided to step back into D&D with 3rd edition and I had always kept up my Dragon magazines from the early 80's.

    My investment into 3rd edition has been huge. Now I knew they would make a 4th edition, that in itself doesn't bother me. So far, if what I have read is true it appears more and more like what we at home have talked about it being like, computer oriented, re-doing material when they have over expanded themselves in products and ideas, less roleplaying, more power (not the reasons why I game). I am a roleplayer. Always have been, always will be.

    I regret to say that I thought they would at least be able to make it for
    10-12 years with 3rd edition (3.5 whatever) before taking this step. The only reason 3.5 exists is because they had to clean 3rd edition up due to rushing game design to fast.

    Sure just like others out there, I'll purchase the Players Handbook or at the very least look at it in the store just to see what they did with D&D. If it fails to be compatible with the current edition then I age just all that much more. Can't keep up financially, won't choose to, not as long as I'm just a DM who writes (or tries to write) an occasional article and not be paid for it.

    My library consists of 50+ books, all of which are in perfect condition other than the core three books which get a lot of use. Why are they in perfect condition....too much material to keep up with in an attempt to implement it into the game. Why on Oerth would I set aside thouands of dollars of D&D products (I re-purchased countless modules after foolishly selling mine many years ago because I wasn't playing and I needed the money that bad at the time, won't make that mistake again).

    Now many of us (including myself) said the same thing when 3rd edition came out, but after reviewing it I did decide to leap in. Now I'm older, have invested far more than I did with 1st and 2nd edition combined and hardly scratched the surface of getting the material into the world. I kept up on it for 3 reasons.....

    1. I knew my daughter would enjoy the game and I wanted to instill
    gaming into her in hopes that she would carry with her and get all
    of the positives out of it that I did. I accomplished this. She is now
    almost 15 and plays with her friends as I did when I was a teen.

    2. I have always enjoyed Greyhawk more than I actually loved the game
    and I wanted to keep it alive (at least within myself).

    I eventually discovered over the years that I can fall in love with
    another game which as a teen didn't think was possible. My Dragon
    magazine 4 poster map, Expedition to the Ruins of Greyhawk module,
    and some of the other Greyhawk items mean more to me than the
    actual rulebooks as does my Top Secret/S.I. game.

    3. I have always wanted to break into the bussiness and D&D always
    seemed like the best outlet to do that.

    But for me, despite how good or interesting a 4th edition could be......I can't and won't start all over. Oh I'll keep gaming. I will either continue playing with our current edition, go back to Top Secret/S.I. or very possibly to back to creating a Legion of Super-heroes roleplaing game which I tinkered with last year (my roots go back to this further than D&D).

    I'm curious to see what they will do, not curious from a consumer point of view but as a sideline fan cheering for the old days which I can look back on to, I don't intend to look ahead. I don't and never will have gold lined pockets or an everfull purse.

    I had truly hoped that before this day arrived, WOTC would have sold the rights to the game much like TSR had to.

    Guess it didn't happen!
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    Eileen of Greyhawk, Prophet of Istus, Messenger of the Gods
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    Thu Aug 16, 2007 10:02 am  

    Eileen,

    I don't think that you or I (or a great many of the gamers that find their way to Canonfire) are really the target audience of a new edition. WotC would like us to follow them into it, but those of use with huge investments in our respective additions are not a good bet.

    The fact is, to get new players WotC will need to reduce the barriers for entry to the game to gain new players and compete with WoW for mind share.

    With that in mind, the gamble is this, will they get enough new players with a streamlined version of D&D? Will real electronic support for players and DMs be a draw?

    More disturbing is the aggressive moves on WotC part to bring all IP back to WotC. Will they go after fan sites like this one in order to "protect" their IP?

    Also, they can't get rid of the OGL but if they can make it less relevant by aggressively licensing 4e without using a new OGL... If most everything is being published in 4e, that sucks the life out of 3.5 OGL.

    I will take a wait and see attitude on 4e. If it doesn't impress me, I have plenty of 3.5 goodness to last a long time.

    My two coppers,

    Bryan Blumklotz
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    Thu Aug 16, 2007 11:06 am  

    Sracenus:

    I agree with you 100% we are not the target audience. I figured I would purchase the majority of 3.5 as an gaming investment of the future. We all knew this would eventually happen, and like you I will see what they do. In the meantime my library of books will keep me busy in the years to come or I will find another gaming outlet. Hope to make great use of the purchases however.

    Gaming Forever!
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    Eileen of Greyhawk, Prophet of Istus, Messenger of the Gods
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    Thu Aug 16, 2007 1:43 pm  

    Although I'm not happy to see 4E cmoing out so soon, WotC is a COMPANY in the business of making money. And you all know that a new edition was inevitable. I just wanted to milk 3E/3.5 a little longer... Smile

    That said, I am curious as to what new features 4E will bring to the gaming table. And - where is Greyhawk's place in the new D&D? I will be looking at the new material, and if it is worthwhile, I may will switch. I know I'll pick up the core books just to stay current on the new rules for articles and adventures that I'm working on even now.
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    Thu Aug 16, 2007 2:19 pm  

    gargoyle wrote:
    Although I'm not happy to see 4E cmoing out so soon, WotC is a COMPANY in the business of making money. And you all know that a new edition was inevitable. I just wanted to milk 3E/3.5 a little longer... Smile


    I don't think anyone is begrudging WoTC the right to turn a profit. That aside....

    1. I'm not looking forward to having to purchase a whole new slate of rulebooks. Nor am I looking forward to learn and/or retraining to use the new rules.

    2. Unlike 3.5 rules, 4.0 is unlikely to be 'backwards compatable' with previously existing rules. So now if I want to run the old modules, I'll have to convert them to 4.0 rules. Along with 1st ed, 2nd ed AND 3rd edition. Converting old modules to the new rules could be a growth industry.

    3. will the new rules add anything to the game? Or, to put it another way, what do the new rules do better than the OLD rules? I can't answer that question as yet, since I haven't seen them. However - unless 4.0 offers a significant upgrade or ease of use over 3.5, then I doubt I'll be making the switch to 4ed any time soon (if at all).

    4. From what I've read, it seems that WoTC is going to emphasize an online distribution model over the normal print run of a given product. What effect (if any) this has on the 'local gaming store' culture could be significant. I, for one, would miss my local gamer hangout.

    5. I have questions about how WoTC is going to adminster their new portal website (gleemax). The concept is mildly insulting IMHO but that's not what worries me. I'm concerned about the possiblity that WoTC will steal useable ideas from their website (and users) and use them without crediting or paying the author.

    6. Given the how pervasive the 3.5 ruleset is with the gamer community, I wonder what affect this will have on the Living Greyhawk folks. Will WoTC force them to make all offical events 4ed only? A year SEEMS like a lot of time to make the switch, but there's a substantial library of material that the Living Greyhawk (not to mention the RPGA) crowd would have to update. A year might not be enough time. And is it fair to force the LG people to update to 4th ed like this?

    7. what about products already 'in the pipeline'? Why would I want to invest any money at all into new books if they're just going to be obsolete within a year?

    At this time, I have more questions than answers. So i'm going to wait and see what pops up about 4th edition.


    Last edited by weaver95 on Thu Aug 16, 2007 2:43 pm; edited 1 time in total
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    Thu Aug 16, 2007 2:42 pm  

    Hey Gargoyle...if you've seem the new StarWars rules recently released, word has it theat the 4th(5th) Ed is basicly the same format....more minatures involved... early release most likely due to drop in sales... Confused

    My two coppers worth....

    So much for patronage these days... as long as your willing to fork out the coin, thats all WotC/Hasbro care about. Mad

    Idea So something everyone should note... 1st, 2nd and 3rd/True 4th(3.5) Editions were (are still) fun to play.... ok...so there's no fancy hardcover release every month or continued "official" support and finding out of print books can be difficult, but those game Editions are still very much fun to play... if anything, a little bit of this, add that, change this, and voila...we have a home grown rules based D&D that works for you and your group of players (something 3/3.5 was apparently already). Nothing precludes one from playing different D&D games and running your own "home style" and say....playing in a 4th(5th) Ed Living Greyhawk game is very do-able. Just because a new Edition comes about, for some reason the last version is "old and yesterday and not playable any more"....that is so far from the truth of it all...its all so very playable and fan sites similar to CF support "new" ideas/material for your games... its endless. Smile

    WotC/Hasbro has and continues to piss off allot of "core" gamers of late. If this 4th Ed dosen't have something to maintain "our" interest, they will feel the impact in sales. Wink

    Further, aside from being a business, their bus-plan sucked for 3/3.5(4th) Editions. The amount of hard cover books and additional rule material over the last 3 years was huge and unheard of, loss of control of the games mechanics...making it huge, a deperate attempt to appease the Hasbro Lords with sales... firing all over the age board in the marketing strategy... plus the turn over rate of employees and heads of Dept, failing to maintain continuity....

    Exclamation "Fail to Plan....Plan to Fail". Exclamation

    Sadly, 4th(5th) Ed appears to be the attempt to wipe the board clean and start over... hopefully, this Edition will fare better...hopefully. Time will tell.

    I for one will continue to adapt to the change (grudgingly-yes I'll grip about this as well), while maintaining a good grasp of what was... because if we do not support the change... to some degree, the company (WotC) could fold under lost sales and put D&D off the screen for awhile before someone desides to either sell it or step up and buy the Lic (similar to what WotC did to TSR)...but be wary...would the new Lic holder have the same principles or values we hold to the game. Question

    Thus, the least of two evils currently is to see where this goes, how well this 4th(5th) Ed is and what the plan "may" be.

    Regardless...the game must go on and will ...with or without 4th(5th) Ed or WotC/Hasbro! Exclamation Exclamation Exclamation

    Cheerz

    the AncientGamer Cool
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    </a>AncientGamer aka BusterBudd
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    Thu Aug 16, 2007 2:52 pm  

    BusterBudd wrote:
    Quote:
    Hey Gargoyle...if you've seem the new StarWars rules recently released, word has it theat the 4th(5th) Ed is basicly the same format....more minatures involved... early release most likely due to drop in sales...


    No, I haven't seen the SWSE book yet. I kind of figured (like many people did) that it would be a percursor and preview of 4E, and it probably is. Again, though, who knows? It might blow our socks off! Exclamation
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    Thu Aug 16, 2007 2:54 pm  

    So noted, but I have it on good authority that the rules system is very similar.

    What if one dosen't wear socks.... Laughing


    Cheerz

    AncientGamer
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    </a>AncientGamer aka BusterBudd
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    Thu Aug 16, 2007 4:14 pm  

    Well, I agree with many of the issues raised by many here. The only reason that I can see anyone would consider ugrading is that 4e is a reconciliation of all the rules that 3.5 has grown into. My group often finds in our games (in which we allow any publishers material with DM approval) that the WOTC stuff is broken. Specifically, rules in multiple WOTC supplements, when combined create unreasonably powerful results.

    This isnt a big problem for me or my crew, but it would be nice if there was a rebalancing of the overall system including the supplements. I dont, however, want to be forced to buy new rules, primarily because I dont have the time to go through the learning curve, to play, or to write for, new rules.

    That said, I would prefer WOTC to start concentrating on quality setting supplements. Our presence here indicates that we like Greyhawk, and would want that type of product. I have freinds who are FR fans, and they complain that the quality of the supplements has gotten abysmal.

    I am not a publisher, but it seems to me that the forced upgrade to new systems consistently leaves part of the market behind. If they want $300 from me, I think they need to create more things like Expedition to CG.

    Ah well, they havent published much I wanted except ECGH, and not giving them my money wont worry me that much either. I will miss Dungeon and Dragon though.
    Master Greytalker

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    Thu Aug 16, 2007 7:51 pm  
    Oh, well...

    I kinda look at it this way...

    After almost 30 years of playing D&D I feel competent to provide my players with an enjoyable game without any further books or rules supplements. Therefore, none of my campaigns are going to change. It's not so much that I hate WotC or 4e, it's just that I don't see the need. WotC can do whatever they want and I don't care. For me, it's about my players and the fun we have. When it comes to Greyhawk and other settings, I haven't exhausted all the stuff I already own so I don't really feel like I need anything more. Sure, it's fun to look at the new stuff, and I enjoy designing new stuff, but I couldn't care less whether or not the new stuff I get comes from WotC or my own word processor. 4e is there whether I want it to be or not. Is it a good rules system? Who cares? I can make a good game with it or without it. Will I learn the new system? Sure I will, and I may even buy a few of the books - but that's only because I'd like to try my hand at getting a few things published just for fun.

    In the old days we had a certain way of looking at rules - they were there to be broken, reworked, fixed, ignored, or otherwise messed with until they fit our needs. What was "official" was pretty much irrelevant. Why not adopt that philosophy now? If there's an idea that you like in one of the new books, then buy it. If there's not, so what? Make your own rules. Ever run a scenario that had never been written? With no notes? And no stats for the monsters? Try it sometime. I suspect most of you will be pleasantly surprised by how well you do. Rules (and new editions of D&D) provide a starting structure, but the real game is played in your own mind and in the minds of the others around your game table.

    So what about all those new players out there who don't have decades of experience? What about those of us who don't have time to design our own material? There's a simple solution - just use stuff that's already out there. You really don't need anything new. It doesn't take all that long to rework the old stuff; just wing it. Seriously, try it. I feel reasonably assured that no one reading this is mentally incompetent (except perhaps for you, Duicarthan Wink ). All of you have enough intelligence to spend an hour or two just sitting down and thinking for a while about what you want your next game to be. Make a few notes for yourself, then cut loose. You'll be fine.

    Don't get all worried about whether or not 4e is any good or whether or not WotC is making too much money. If you have the cash and the time, then buy the new books. If you don't, then don't buy them. D&D has never been about rules, books, or supplements. It's about a bunch of folks sitting down around a table and having fun. You don't need to buy a book to do that. Just because they make it and put it on the shelf doesn't mean you have to buy it. You don't have to keep up with the Joneses in D&D.

    Now go gather up your friends and go through the Keep on the Borderlands again. Stop stressing over what WotC does. D&D is about relaxing, folks - so relax.
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    Thu Aug 16, 2007 8:12 pm  

    I can imagine lots of DM tools I would use (but don't know how to write).
    More computer support is great...but at least from what the add said, it looks like another trend is the marginalization of the the role of DM.

    Especially the part about logging on to play 24/7. They are definately chasing the WoW demographic. Which means less plot, less story, less nuance, more pre-designed fights, and eventually no need for a (live) DM. The role of DM is being replaced by a program that does what programs do well - calculate - and does not do what humans do well - anticipate, learn, respond, etc.

    I actually don't mind much, though...the release of 4E vindicates my decision not to learn 3E. I have one campaign, ongoing since 1987 that is a 1E/2E hybrid and another ongoing since 1983 that is Classic D&D. I don't have much interest in learning new rules every product cycle. I am not their demographic - they don't have much to sell me except 1E/2E PDF's and miniatures.
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    Thu Aug 16, 2007 8:27 pm  

    One thing does intice me, just a little; 4E is going to be released "campaign neutral", no "core" setting. WotC will be updating various worlds, one per year, starting with the Misbegotten Realms ( Wink ). After that... could Greyhawk get some new life?? Happy True, it would update it for 4E, but it could still mean new material....
    Maybe...
    In another year, or two, or more...
    Just a thought.
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    Thu Aug 16, 2007 8:33 pm  

    gargoyle wrote:
    One thing does intice me, just a little; 4E is going to be released "campaign neutral", no "core" setting. WotC will be updating various worlds, one per year, starting with the Misbegotten Realms ( Wink ). After that... could Greyhawk get some new life?? Happy True, it would update it for 4E, but it could still mean new material....
    Maybe...
    In another year, or two, or more...
    Just a thought.


    I'm not sure I trust WoTC to do the setting justice anymore. I mean, look at the heavy handed last minute edit to their recent Greyhawk product - they untethered Castle Greyhawk from GREYHAWK. No more castle. Y'know - the defining dungeon/landmark for the City of Greyhawk? THAT castle? Tell me that WoTC gives a damn about the opinion of their players after something like that....

    I think that fan sites (such as this one) and the Living Greyhawk organization have done the best, most consistant work when it comes to GH writing. WoTC, if they were smart, would learn from those organizations. Find out what the fans/players want to see and use, then improve on that process. Instead, I think they're going to blow off what WE might want and go their own direction. I could respect that view if I thought that WoTC had a clue about just where they were heading. And that's where I start to worry...since I don't think WoTC has the ability to write/produce decent material on their own.
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    Thu Aug 16, 2007 10:40 pm  

    Money has become more of a governing factor for WOTC now, Im sure 4E will be faster more exciting and even (dare I say) easier to climb the experience point ladder to become divine in a matter of months...
    It took me a while to play 3.5 and to honest aside from some of the good aspects of the edition it is far to easy to level. I have been playing a Cleric who since Christmas 2006 has attained 13 level and thats only playing fortnightly.
    I know WOTC is part of the Hasbro empire now and they must have a lot of presure on them to turn a profit and to do that they have seen how Games Workshop UK has plundered its players into buying edition after edition, special character thingy after special character thingy....
    I wonder at which age group they have targeted as the new player, some one who wants the instant success game rather than the long term campaign veteran who after a couple of years playing becomes a Lord by their own hand and establishes their own Lands etc... My enjoyment is playing and DMing in a world were players work hard at keeping their characters alive, strive to make the most of what they have earned.
    I just feel that the D&D I grew up with and became lost when the $ sign replaced the Advanced.....
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    Fri Aug 17, 2007 12:19 am  

    DavidBedlam wrote:
    But what's wrong with 3.5? I don't have any problems with it, so why do we need a new system?

    You see, I was asking exactly the same question when 3E first came out. Oh, and I also asked it when 2E came out.... Smile
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    Fri Aug 17, 2007 5:29 am  
    Re: Oh, well...

    bubbagump wrote:
    Don't get all worried about whether or not 4e is any good or whether or not WotC is making too much money. If you have the cash and the time, then buy the new books. If you don't, then don't buy them. D&D has never been about rules, books, or supplements. It's about a bunch of folks sitting down around a table and having fun. You don't need to buy a book to do that. Just because they make it and put it on the shelf doesn't mean you have to buy it. You don't have to keep up with the Joneses in D&D.


    I wish I'd said that!

    Yeah, D&D is more that just a rule system or twenty pound books. It's about fun, and getting together, and snack foods, and mis-timed Monty Python quotes, and....and..... and all that other stuff budda said.

    *Sigh* Why can't I be that aticulate?
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    Fri Aug 17, 2007 6:30 am  

    Sorry to diuble post, but I found an article here that you may wish to read.

    The Open Gaming License will contine!

    Forgotten Realms will be the first campaign setting released.

    If I read it right, a subscription to the digital initiative will costs more than one to Dragon/Dungeon, but less than one to World or Warcraft. I think. Hi-tech confuses me.
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    Fri Aug 17, 2007 6:35 am  

    I read on one of the 4E forums (I think) that it will run $9.95 per month.
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    Fri Aug 17, 2007 1:19 pm  

    I´d say that the folks here are not WotCs target audience anyway. All Greyhawk info has been printed several times over, and most of the folks posting here are settled in their gaming ways that it probably makes no difference if WotC publishes a new rule set - several who have posted here have said that they won´t buy the new stuff.

    But this would be the reaction to every new ruleset, no matter when it is published - it makes no difference if the previous rules edition is one, 12 or 30 years old. And it was the general reaction to 2e, 3e, and 3.5.

    So, I´m more concerned about Greyhawk - if it is no longer the core setting, and if LG will come to a "triumphant close" next year, as is posted on enworld, the question remains what will happen after these events? Will the licence be availabe for others (paizo?) Will it just gather dust? Will WotC themselves do something with it? Will there still be a LG?

    Stefan
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    Fri Aug 17, 2007 3:52 pm  

    I suspect WOTC will not sell the license. In addition, I have been understanding that their intention is to have a "neutral campaign" design. This actually may prove better for Greyhawk. I am not one for taking Ebberron or Forgotten Realms and reworking it for Greyhawk. I can do that but when it comes to world building and given a limited amount of time to work on gaming as due to all of the adult responsibilities (such as having a family and job) I have to pick and choose how I will spend my creative time on world building. Re-doing modules to fit Greyhawk is very low on my priority list.

    If core products remain neutral it could be easier to drop into Greyhawk (hopefully), depending primarly on how large of map areas they go with for modules, how much they use specific names of forests, deities, etc. I realize we can always modify the names to suit Greyhawk (change the name of xxx forest to say the Gnarley forest), we have always had that option. This is something I rarely do however because of the time it takes to redo maps and it simply bugs me to no end to restructure text and rename. If modules are few and far in between I would be more willing to do this.

    One thing I do however is if I do find a neutral module I like which mentions some forest or another, I make it a portion of a larger forest in Greyhawk. This is what I did for Ravenloft. The swamp in the modules retains the same name as given in the adventure but it is only a small portion of a larger swamp, and called that by the locals. Then I give that portion of the swamp some local flavor when I create random encounter tables. This works fine for areas which map small areas of land.

    Here's why I think it could be better for Greyhawk. Feel free to disagree if you are so inclined.

    When Gygax created the deities which currently are found in the Players Handbook he designed them for Greyhawk and Greyhawk only. Sure you could add them to your home campaign or some other one, but they were intended for Greyhawk. By not being placed in the new rules, deities and other aspects of Greyhawk will no longer wind up being generic D&D, it will go back to being Greyhawk.

    Maybe there won't be anykind of support products for Greyhawk down the road, maybe there will be. My understanding is that each year they are going to concentrate on a different world, then move on to another, and so on. Personally, I they include Greyhawk 3-5 years down the road
    (and keep their word on this) I would be pleased. A 1 year heavily produced product line of World of Greyhawk products would keep me very happy. It would take me that long to digest all the material and get it worked in anyway. If they gave us just a couple of products then it wouldn't be really worth anything to me. So we shall see.

    Either way I see it as Greyhawk lore returns to Greyhawk. If they don't use it then at the very least, its not generic anymore.
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    Fri Aug 17, 2007 11:50 pm  
    Re: Oh, well...

    DavidBedlam wrote:
    bubbagump wrote:
    Don't get all worried about whether or not 4e is any good or whether or not WotC is making too much money. If you have the cash and the time, then buy the new books. If you don't, then don't buy them. D&D has never been about rules, books, or supplements. It's about a bunch of folks sitting down around a table and having fun. You don't need to buy a book to do that. Just because they make it and put it on the shelf doesn't mean you have to buy it. You don't have to keep up with the Joneses in D&D.


    I wish I'd said that!

    Yeah, D&D is more that just a rule system or twenty pound books. It's about fun, and getting together, and snack foods, and mis-timed Monty Python quotes, and....and..... and all that other stuff budda said.

    *Sigh* Why can't I be that aticulate?


    You did just fine, my friend. Just fine. Wink
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    Sat Aug 18, 2007 12:24 am  

    I just looked around on the new D&D website, and neither under "Settings" nor under "RPGA" does Greyhawk appear, whereas FR and Eberron both do. So, it appears that GH will not recieve much support from WotC in the Future.
    If this will have any effect on canonfire and other fansites, and what this means for LG is anybodies guess at the moment.

    Stefan
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    Sat Aug 18, 2007 12:54 am  

    stebehil wrote:
    I just looked around on the new D&D website, and neither under "Settings" nor under "RPGA" does Greyhawk appear, whereas FR and Eberron both do. So, it appears that GH will not recieve much support from WotC in the Future.
    If this will have any effect on canonfire and other fansites, and what this means for LG is anybodies guess at the moment.

    Stefan


    I've said it before. What it (WotC not producing any more GH material) means is that Greyhawk will be OURS!
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    Sat Aug 18, 2007 3:11 am  

    BlueWitch wrote:
    I've said it before. What it (WotC not producing any more GH material) means is that Greyhawk will be OURS!


    It's our! All ours! BWA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA!!!!!

    *Ahem*

    What Blue said. As long we are here to talk endlessly about stuff and complain about the young'uns and their new fangled technology and computers and fashions and theory of relativity and all that modern junk, Greyhawk will never die.

    We'll just keep casting Raise Dead over and over.

    Laughing
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    Sat Aug 18, 2007 8:35 am  

    DavidBedlam wrote:
    What Blue said. As long we are here to talk endlessly about stuff and complain about the young'uns and their new fangled technology and computers and fashions and theory of relativity and all that modern junk, Greyhawk will never die.

    We'll just keep casting Raise Dead over and over.

    Laughing


    Be that as it may, I thought it rather interesting that WoTC decided to end the Living Greyhawk campaign. While I had my issues with the way LG was run (at least in my local area anyway), I certainly respected the dedication and organizational skills necessary to organize and run what amounted to a world wide campaign involving thousands of players. And not just the guys running the show - the LG players themselves have more than demonstrated their loyalty to the brand name. After all this time and all that effort, WoTC decided to END the campaign?

    I can't help but feel we're not being told the whole story here. It just doesn't make sense to me. Look, corporations want to make money, right? Here's a brand name IP that's got one hell of a dedicated following - one that they really don't have to spend oodles of money further developing, they could easily put out one quality book every business quarter and MORE than reap the rewards from it. GH fans are so starved for attention they'd lap up anything GH related and come back for seconds. Especially if it was well produced. Anyways, here's a well placed, very well developed brand just WAITING to be developed/exploited....and WoTC just DROPS it!?

    Something here doesn't make sense. At least not to me. Anyone got any theories?
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    Sat Aug 18, 2007 9:47 am  

    Weaver95:

    I have cast numerous divination and commune spells and it seems that I have lost a connection with Istus. Sources indicate WOTC is preventing the necessary link. Perhaps we should call up Trithereron for Retribution or Heironeous for Justice! Anyone else suggest other deities with areas of concern which might help?
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    Sat Aug 18, 2007 2:02 pm  

    Having looked a bit onto the 4E hype a bit this afternoon, I can say I am at least hopeful for it being worth the time to look at. The digital gaming table app looks pretty cool in the demo, but we'll see how that goes. The presentation video is on you tube (links are the front page of wizards.com/dnd )

    Star Wars Saga uses a D20 modern like build system of feat/talent at every level, and 4E looks like it is gonna use that same system. Racial abilities that matter, weapon types that supposedly mean more than fluff or different crit checks/multipliers (or at least that is what they hint at...time will tell). Having looked over SWSaga, its a pretty compact little game that is reconizeable if you are familiar with the other versions of Star Wars D20, and I think 4E will be similar, but different enough to make getting the new books necessary.

    I am basing all of this on conjecture and circumstance, so it may mean nothing, but from a strictly rules basis it seems worth the time to at least look at.

    As for Greyhawk inclusion, well we all know that its going to go to the wayside....maybe they will actually let someone like Paizo take it over. We could only be so lucky :) Hasbro and WOTC think the setting is dead, and even thousands of fans can't change that perception it seems.

    Personally I've got more than enough info to run my campaign, and then some. And I know enough to play in Anced Math's game, so all in all, this bothers me less than it could.

    Just my little additions to the coppers in the fountain :)
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    Sat Aug 18, 2007 4:36 pm  

    They don't think the setting is dead. They think its not cost effective to actively promote more than 1 or 2 game worlds because a "greyhawk book" or a "forgotten realms book" will both sell less well than a "core D&D" book. So they've narrowed the focus to Eberron and the FR. And I think they'd be even happier if Eberron eclipsed the FR and allowed them to essentially market one campaign world.
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    Sat Aug 18, 2007 5:11 pm  

    Vormaerin wrote:
    They don't think the setting is dead. They think its not cost effective to actively promote more than 1 or 2 game worlds because a "greyhawk book" or a "forgotten realms book" will both sell less well than a "core D&D" book. So they've narrowed the focus to Eberron and the FR. And I think they'd be even happier if Eberron eclipsed the FR and allowed them to essentially market one campaign world.


    That's perverse. Actually wanting your core brand names to LOSE popularity so that you can 'save money'?
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    Sat Aug 18, 2007 6:13 pm  

    Its official, LG is dead, Living Realms to take over in 2008...

    http://forums.gleemax.com/showthread.php?t=908402

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    Sat Aug 18, 2007 9:32 pm  

    Saracenus wrote:
    Its official, LG is dead, Living Realms to take over in 2008...

    http://forums.gleemax.com/showthread.php?t=908402

    Bryan Blumklotz
    AKA Saracenus


    Living Greyhawk has been the face of organized play for the 3rd Edition D&D game. Tremendously successful, thousands participate worldwide in the biggest shared-world D&D game anywhere. LG has been around since the beginning of 3rd Edition, and it will last to the end of the 3rd Edition product line. Starting with a two-round special at D&D Experience 2008 (February 28 – March 2), the campaign will begin its final story arc – a series of core adventures that will build into the climactic two-round finale at Origins 2008. We’re pulling out all the stops in these final adventures – no major NPC is off-limits, and you’re really going to be a part of the most world-affecting story arc we’ve ever done. We’re getting some of the best authors to ever write for Living Greyhawk to help with these adventures – what the Circle has planned is nothing short of amazing. While the campaign concludes at Origins next year, it is our sincerest desire to provide you an epic conclusion to the campaign we all love so much.


    Hmmm.....LG was so successful and so popular that WoTC had to kill it? That just don't make any sense to me. If it's that popular, why end it? If it's not popular, why kid around - just kill it and move on with life.

    I dunno...from that write up I get the distinct impression that someone on WoTC's editorial staff is itching to the writer who kills Iuz or Mordenkainen.

    This whole thing just seems pointless. I mean, if WoTC wanted to piss off fans world wide, this would be a great way to go about doing it. It just doesn't make any sense to me, that's all. Not in terms of literary continuity, not in terms of brand recognition and not in terms of customer relations. I must have missed something along the line somewhere.
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    Sun Aug 19, 2007 4:31 am  

    Well, if they do something silly, we can always find a way to fix it. Wink
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    Sun Aug 19, 2007 5:25 am  

    By the time they start doing climatic things in LG, the year will be 598 CY. Basically, LG is one big home game.

    It was never intended to generate canon for the rest of us. In fact, we are not allowed to republish the materials generated by LG because of the tangled authors rights of the mods and source materials for each region.

    So, if LG continues the trend of destroying more Greyhawk Icons, do what I am already doing, ignoring it.

    I am already going to ignore the ending of Expedition to the Ruins of Castle Greyhawk and keep Castle Greyhawk in Greyhawk...

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    Sun Aug 19, 2007 8:30 am  

    I don't know why we're all worrying so much about 4E. In days of old when TSR produced something new we sat up and took notice becuse there was a sense of care and concern about quality of products;they were more "amateurish" but seemingly prepared as a work of love.

    Now, of course, it's a business. We know this, so let's just get on with the business of enjoying Greyhawk and being curmudgeonly about the "professionals" at WOTC.

    As for 4E; embrace the good bits, kick in the pants the rubbish and continue to play the X edition that we've all made up over the years.
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    Sun Aug 19, 2007 1:15 pm  

    Am I the only one to think that the "world-changing" events which conclude LG may just be the end of Greyhawk, period? Then WOTC could do whatever they want with the IP, rebuilding it from the ground up, without fear of canon......

    Anyways, I have zero intention of buy 4ed. I grew up on Basic, then Advanced. I remember the furor when 2nd Edition was proposed, and I bought into it, albeit rather grudgingly. With time, I thought 2nd Edition became a very good system. I was very resistant when 3ed came out, having not really played for years due to the dissolution of my gaming group. Since then, I have acquired only the 3 core rulebooks, and have acquired nothing of 3.5 (well, I've BOUGHT nothing of 3.5). While I like some elements or 3ed, overall, I felt it was a step back, becoming less about the ROLE-playing.

    While I understand WOTC has to make money, it makes me sad to see every revision trying to reinvent the wheel, instead of just fixing it up. It's too bad WOTC couldn't think a little differently, and find a way to support the older settings and older worlds, which would keep the older players, instead of constantly sacrificing the old for the new. For instance.... why not continue to have one supported campaign in each iteration of the game? Like say, continue to support Greyhawk through 2nd Edition supplements, Eberron through 3rd edition supplements, and FR with 4th? I mean, there's so much territory WOTC could explore in each campaign, not necessarily by moving the time lines forward either, but by exploring the past. If you want to encourage the e-distrubutoin element, why not make the stats blocks for different editions available online with the purchase of each product? If you buy a 2nd Edition Greyhawk module, you get an online code that gives you access to the 3rd and 4th eidtion stats for characters, monsters, items, etc?

    I don't know... perhaps this is the thinking that bankrupted TSR, and left us in the mess we're in. All I know is, I will likely forever be stuck in 2nd Ed, using copious rule mods and house rules, because that rule set best epitomizes what I love about the game. Hopefully, we will always have places like Canonfire to continue to expand our visions.
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    Sun Aug 19, 2007 4:14 pm  

    SUPrUNown,

    For all my bitching about version changes in D&D... There is no way I would expect WotC to focus their finite resources on supporting older systems.

    Also, supporting settings in only the editions they first appeared is a death knell for them. They couldn't support it because the ROI just isn't there.

    Its a cold, hard business decision. Where as our attachments are emotional. We love and hate things about the various versions of D&D. We all have our favorite game worlds and those we loath...

    Now, if they provide a means for fans to write support for dead editions and settings without the threat of legal action, then there is where you will find (or not) others with similar interests and you will be the ones moving it forward.

    Like I told Eileen before, we are not the target audience of 4e, those of use with huge emotional and monetary interests in previous editions and settings... They need fresh blood to keep this industry alive and growing.

    My two coppers,

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    Sun Aug 19, 2007 5:36 pm  

    I agree that it isn't feasible to support older systems. I guess in my idea, I don't see it as supporting older systems, but supporting campaign worlds. But, that's just a difference in vision.
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    Sun Aug 19, 2007 6:57 pm  

    SUPrUNown wrote:
    I agree that it isn't feasible to support older systems. I guess in my idea, I don't see it as supporting older systems, but supporting campaign worlds. But, that's just a difference in vision.


    WoTC has a rather large and enthusiastic fan base in GH. Look at LG - thousands of players from around the world, all of whom are dedicated enough to show up at weekend events and conventions (and pay to attend). I'm sure Paizo saw an increase in sales as they started doing more and more adventure paths with a GH setting (I know in my local area they did anyway). Watch the sales of the latest GH book - 'Expedition to the ruins of Castle Greyhawk', i'm sure the book will do a fair number of sales. There is MORE than sufficent evidence to support further product development.

    And WoTC *cancels* Living Greyhawk? If we assume (as some of you apparently do) that WoTC is 'merely' a rabidly capitalistic company only interested in their profit margin(s), then why would such an organization IGNORE the obvious profit potential in further development of a popular product line? It would make sense for them to expand production and pump the consumer interest for all it's worth, not to abandon production and sit on the IP rights.

    none of this makes any sense to me. I can only assume that there's something going on behind the scenes at WoTC, that for some reason the 'powers that be' over there have decided to let greyhawk lay fallow and to make sure that nobody else does any 'offical' development.

    I can't help thinking that someone over there is gearing up to 'wipe the slate clean' as it were and purge any/all remaining GH 'big name' NPCs. I don't know why I've got that feeling...it's just a hunch. I could very well be wrong...but I can't shake the thought that this move by WoTC is more vindictive and petty than smart business sense.
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    Sun Aug 19, 2007 8:25 pm  

    DavidBedlam wrote:
    BlueWitch wrote:
    I've said it before. What it (WotC not producing any more GH material) means is that Greyhawk will be OURS!


    It's our! All ours! BWA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA!!!!!

    *Ahem*

    What Blue said. As long we are here to talk endlessly about stuff and complain about the young'uns and their new fangled technology and computers and fashions and theory of relativity and all that modern junk, Greyhawk will never die.

    We'll just keep casting Raise Dead over and over.

    Laughing


    I agree in theory except we'll probably still have situations where something comes out like "Expedition to the Ruins of Greyhawk" where we can argue back and forth whether something is canon or not. Looking at the preview for the new Dungeon they're already doing an update of "Lost Caverns of Tsojcanth" so I doubt that WoTC is really going to ever leave GH alone.

    IP-wise GH belongs to WoTC but otherwise it's already ours if we want it to be so I don't really see much changing.

    From the designer notes out already it sounds like 4e characters are going to be defined more by "I'm a fighter with an axe" rather than "I'm a poor gentleman man-at-arms from Ahlissa who was forced to flee to the Wild Coast due to killing the son of the baron in a duel." But judging from some of the groups I've attempted to play with in the last few years that is already the situation with 3 and 3.5 and the latter example of "roleplaying" is almost extinct.

    Given that the only roleplayers I know who fit my style of roleplaying are scattered across the country I'm highly interested in an internet-based digital game table. The thing that has stopped me so far is how complicated it'll be to set up on my own, so if with 4e WoTC can give me the tools to do that and still have a game that runs pretty easily I'll heartily thank them for it.

    If not I probably won't run or play in any games unless I'm lucky enough to meet some gamers who play more in my style. Either way I'm going to keep writing stuff for and continue to participate in Canonfire! and GH the way I am now.
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    Mon Aug 20, 2007 1:26 am  

    smillan_31 wrote:
    From the designer notes out already it sounds like 4e characters are going to be defined more by "I'm a fighter with an axe" rather than "I'm a poor gentleman man-at-arms from Ahlissa who was forced to flee to the Wild Coast due to killing the son of the baron in a duel."


    I don't see why the rule set should define the way in which games are played. I'm sure that is will just as possible to role-play deep characters in fourth edition as it was in past editions.

    I've been reading a few of the early adventures that I've downloaded from Paizo, and some of them appear to be "Here's a dungeon. Loot it!". Now if adventures like those can inspire good roleplaying, then I fail to see how the new system can stunt it.

    smillan_31 wrote:
    Given that the only roleplayers I know who fit my style of roleplaying are scattered across the country I'm highly interested in an internet-based digital game table. The thing that has stopped me so far is how complicated it'll be to set up on my own, so if with 4e WoTC can give me the tools to do that and still have a game that runs pretty easily I'll heartily thank them for it.


    If it works, I'll also probably try that out. I'm not exactly downing in a sea of players over here, so anything that can get more of us togther is a-okay by me.

    But how close will it come to the traditional pencil and paper version of playing? That is the question I really want to know.
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    Mon Aug 20, 2007 2:20 am  

    Spot on David. The rules are the tools (such poetry), we the players are the craftsmen/women who bring it to life.

    There is no doubt in my mind that 4e will become more of a tactical sim with a role-playing element attached for good measure. The presentation posted on you tube highlights this when one of the presenters mentions "clearly defined roles for characters, just like the members of a sports team". Well, it sounds like if your kicker (healer) can't play you're well and truly stuffed.

    Personally, I'm not that bothered if wotc stop supporting Greyhawk. The stuff on this site, including OJ, is infinitely superior.
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    Mon Aug 20, 2007 12:04 pm  

    Ragr wrote:

    Personally, I'm not that bothered if wotc stop supporting Greyhawk. The stuff on this site, including OJ, is infinitely superior.


    Thank you for your support of the work of fans here and on OJ.
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    Mon Aug 20, 2007 4:58 pm  

    DavidBedlam wrote:
    I don't see why the rule set should define the way in which games are played. I'm sure that is will just as possible to role-play deep characters in fourth edition as it was in past editions.

    I've been reading a few of the early adventures that I've downloaded from Paizo, and some of them appear to be "Here's a dungeon. Loot it!". Now if adventures like those can inspire good roleplaying, then I fail to see how the new system can stunt it.


    I'm not saying that it has to be that way. It's not like there weren't plenty of monty-haul power-gamer types in the first two editions and the basic ruleset, but I think the way in which 4e is designed and more importantly presented is going to influence the way people play and attract a certain type of gamer. Honestly I think more people want to play D&D as a pen and paper version of WoW so I'm not going to blame Wizards for going in that direction. Like you said I think it will be easily possible to role-play deep characters in 4e, provided I and my players don't hate the ruleset, which I really don't imagine will be the case. Heck you could have a great role-playing game with deep characters based off the BEER Engine if you have the right people.

    I don't think a virtual gaming table is never going to beat sitting around a real table with friends and enjoying a good game. Players won't be able to hear me have the npc's talk with a Keoish accent or see me act out the enraged bugbear charging them with a morningstar, but you take what you can get game with your old buddies.
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    Mon Aug 20, 2007 7:07 pm  

    WotC is cancelling Living Greyhawk because they don't have any choice. Apparently 4e is completely incompatible with 3e, so there is no 'upgrade' option like when the campaign went from 3.0 to 3.5. Now, they could have shut down LG and started a new LG. But they chose to start Living FR instead. They probably felt it would be more popular and certainly more likely to generate cross promotion with their product line.
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    Tue Aug 21, 2007 1:34 am  

    weaver95 wrote:
    WoTC has a rather large and enthusiastic fan base in GH. Look at LG - thousands of players from around the world, all of whom are dedicated enough to show up at weekend events and conventions (and pay to attend).


    Err... if we'd had "Living Realms" from the beginning of 3e rather than "Living Greyhawk", then I think we'd see a similar turnout. People play Living Greyhawk not because of the setting, but much more because it's D&D (and the only ongoing OP model).

    Good material sells, regardless of the setting.

    Of the three Paizo APs, only one of them (Age of Worms) is even remotely Greyhawk in setting.

    4e will be interesting; it may even be good or very good. Regardless of the edition, I'll keep playing in my version of the World of Greyhawk. With any luck, I'll get to playtest 4e... in my World of Greyhawk. My Ulek campaign is moving towards its conclusion... so I think when it's done, it'll be the perfect time to see if my players and I prefer 4e.

    And I'm going to be very happy with my 1983 World of Greyhawk boxed set and the Living Greyhawk Gazetteer, which give me most of what I need for Greyhawk.

    Cheers!
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    Tue Aug 21, 2007 1:47 am  

    I don't know that its clear that the majority of folks playing in Living Greyhawk are setting neutral. I am sure that quite a few are. But hasn't there been other Living Campaigns that weren't nearly as successful?

    Btw, in addition to Age of Worms the Savage Tide is set in Greyhawk (though not the Flanaess). And Shackled City was retconned into it (not very well).

    Its entirely possible that Living FR will do very well. But I think that many of the content producers and players won't necessarily jump to the new campaign. But its hard to say, really, since most of the RPGA folks I know are known because of GH connections first...
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    Tue Aug 21, 2007 7:35 am  

    I have only once concern with the whole affair... attempts to influence/close fan sites.

    4e... go get em WOTC. Its your business plan. My group is made up of professionals & career folk who have not the time nor inclination to learn new rules. They want to get togeather, game, and enjoy themselves.

    Ending Living GH... not what I would have done, but they are your customers to loose WOTC.

    Forgotten Realms... some people like it, I hope they have fun.

    No more GH! well I have made peace with this in the 10 years that we havent had official content.

    This brings me to Dungeon/Dragon and Paizo. They were successful by all accounts. Subscribership was up, so I understand. But the license was not renewed?!?! Dungeon and Dragon were the only places I found new products. I dont visit Wizards.com and look for new releases, and the local B&N still has 3.0 PHBs on the rack. Nothing new. So, as a customer, WOTC has cut me off from what I might want (their products) and what i do (did) want... new GH material from Paizo.

    Gleemax... the ending of the Paizo license... It has been discussed ad nauseum on this site and others what this might mean. But if it means that WOTC leaves me and CF! alone forever... I will take that.

    That is really all I want from WOTC.

    I can get all I need of GH right here. I would like to see some more comprehensive things in the future from some of the fine folks here.
    This site and the folks here are an endless source of adventure ideas, and my gamers seem to love them.


    If I want alternate content, I am getting the new Paizo AP.
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    Tue Aug 21, 2007 3:36 pm  

    Vormaerin wrote:
    I don't know that its clear that the majority of folks playing in Living Greyhawk are setting neutral. I am sure that quite a few are. But hasn't there been other Living Campaigns that weren't nearly as successful?


    No. Not run by Wizards.

    You've had Living Force (star wars), so utterly different game.
    You've had Living City which was pre-3E.
    There have been RPGA-enabled campaigns like Living Arcanis, but they weren't actual Wizards campaigns.

    Living Greyhawk is the only 3e Living Campaign run by Wizards.

    Quote:
    Btw, in addition to Age of Worms the Savage Tide is set in Greyhawk (though not the Flanaess). And Shackled City was retconned into it (not very well).


    Yeah, although all three APs are "set" in Greyhawk - I've run AoW, and I'm in the middle of running the other two at present - the only one that actually is in the Flanaess is AoW. Shackled City is in somewhere we've never visited, and the only reference in Savage Tide to "core" Greyhawk is Tamoachan - and that's hardly core Greyhawk! (Classic module, yes, but it's on the fringes of the known world).

    Quote:
    Its entirely possible that Living FR will do very well. But I think that many of the content producers and players won't necessarily jump to the new campaign. But its hard to say, really, since most of the RPGA folks I know are known because of GH connections first...


    I think *more* people play Living Greyhawk because it's the best way they can play D&D. I played Living Greyhawk for a couple of years, and it wasn't as good as my home campaigns. The restrictions in single session adventures with only a handful of encounters really begin to shine through. So, LG wasn't really for me or my players.

    However, there are those who really enjoy the community aspects of the LG game, and I think they'll do just as well with a LR game.

    Cheers,
    Merric
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    Tue Aug 21, 2007 3:47 pm  

    Quote:
    This brings me to Dungeon/Dragon and Paizo. They were successful by all accounts. Subscribership was up, so I understand. But the license was not renewed?!?! Dungeon and Dragon were the only places I found new products.


    Yeah. Dungeon and Dragon will now be made by Wizards in an online version. Until the end of the year, you'll be able to get it free from the Wizards site. After that, you'll need to subscribe to get it.

    Issue #151 (the first online issue) sounds fantastic already. Why? A 3e conversion of the Lost Caverns of Tsojcanth...

    Quote:
    Iggwilv’s Legacy: The Lost Caverns of Tsojcanth
    By Edward Albert, Ari Marmell, and C.A. Suleiman

    One of the most ambitious projects to ever hit Dungeon, the classic 1st Edition module is freshly updated to D&D 3.5. Plus, the adventure features a new prelude and a follow-up adventure that takes the PCs to Tsojcanth’s lair.


    From my point of view, digital Dungeon magazine is better. Cheaper, more timely, and I don't have to devote more shelf space to storing it.

    Cheers,
    Merric
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    Tue Aug 21, 2007 4:17 pm  

    Yes, but the "team," assembled so far does not seem quite as capable as the old group. The intro letters on the web site did not really stir the imagination. I will subscribe initially, and I agree the Tsojcanth is intiguing, but my expectations are fairly low.

    But if I understand it correctly, you loose all access to material you have paid for if your subscriptions lapses. That works for a game, but not for a game resource. '

    Again, if we could get a few of those at CF! to write more complete works (not better quality, just more complete) I would have all the GH material ready to play that I could ever want.
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    Tue Aug 21, 2007 4:41 pm  

    Anced_Math wrote:
    But if I understand it correctly, you loose all access to material you have paid for if your subscriptions lapses. That works for a game, but not for a game resource. '


    From what I gather, at the end of every month, the articles published during the month will be gathered together into a pdf "magazine" which you can then download, and you'll also be able to print the individual articles.

    You can save the issues to your harddrive. You won't lose access to it.

    We'll get a better view of it in October.

    Cheers!
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    Wed Aug 22, 2007 5:25 am  

    MerricB wrote:
    From my point of view, digital Dungeon magazine is better. Cheaper, more timely, and I don't have to devote more shelf space to storing it.


    I'll grant you that.

    But, there is something to be said about having paper version to hold in your hands and leaf through over and over. Maybe I'm just a luddite at heart. I'll probably feel better after I've smashed a few stocking frames. Laughing

    On the plus side: The first issue has Demonomicon of Iggwilv: Graz’zt and The Ecology of the Death Knight. That sounds pretty cool.
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    Wed Aug 22, 2007 10:34 am  

    Yes, between Tsojacnth, Grazzt, and Death Knights, they have set themselves up for great success or terrible failure.
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    Wed Aug 22, 2007 10:00 pm  

    MerricB wrote:
    the only reference in Savage Tide to "core" Greyhawk is Tamoachan - and that's hardly core Greyhawk! (Classic module, yes, but it's on the fringes of the known world).


    Well, it had Iggwilv.
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    Wed Aug 22, 2007 10:45 pm  

    rasgon wrote:
    MerricB wrote:
    the only reference in Savage Tide to "core" Greyhawk is Tamoachan - and that's hardly core Greyhawk! (Classic module, yes, but it's on the fringes of the known world).


    Well, it had Iggwilv.


    Yeah, just got that issue. :)

    The APs don't really feel like Greyhawk to me, though I really like them. There are some things that are Greyhawk-like, and others that come from somewhere else entirely.

    Strangely enough, the most Greyhawk-like adventures to me from Wizards have been the Red Hand of Doom, and Sons of Gruumsh (the latter being FR!) Go figure. :) Sons I set in the Pomarj, and we had a lot of fun with it.

    Cheers!
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    Wed Aug 22, 2007 11:58 pm  

    MerricB wrote:
    The APs don't really feel like Greyhawk to me, though I really like them. There are some things that are Greyhawk-like, and others that come from somewhere else entirely.


    Things I like most about the APs were detailed info on a few GH locations that had previously been very sketchy. We've had Diamond Lake, Istivin, Alhaster, Exag, and Spinecastle (plus an earlier article on Hardby). Plus a couple of stat blocks for other places (Eru Tovar, Tonnsburg) .All interesting stuff to build on, tweak, or tone down at your option. Sadly I assume that the end of LG will also mean the end of GH content on WotC as well. Shame as I am building a cool home made gazeteer with all the information.
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    Thu Aug 23, 2007 4:24 pm  

    I found this on the Wizards of the Coast site Dungeons and Dragons official game site (under the Dragon Link, then columns, deisign and development, and then monster.

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The Design & Development article series premiered on the D&D website back in September 2005, and has been a staple ever since. With the approach of 4th Edition, and our designers and developers focused on the new edition, this column will be the primary vehicle for 4th Edition coverage. We’ll not only give you peeks at what’s forthcoming, but also the “how” and “why.”

    Keep in mind that the game is still in a state of flux, as refinements are made by our design and development staff. You’re getting a look behind the curtain at game design in progress, so enjoy, and feel free to send your comments to dndinsider@wizards.com.

    4th Edition dragons are among the most dynamic, exciting monsters in the game—as they should be. They’re different from each other, across categories (the metallics aren’t like the chromatics), across colors (reds and whites don’t have all the same attacks), and across age categories (fear the ancient dragons). Here’s just a taste of what a fight against an ancient dragon might feel like:

    On the dragon’s turn, the first thing it does is burst out in an inferno of flame, searing every PC within 25 feet—a free action. Then, with a standard action, it slashes out at the fighter and the cleric with its two front claws (even though they’re both 20 feet away). As another free action, it uses its tail to slap the rogue, who was trying to sneak up behind it, and pushes her back 10 feet. It’s getting angry at the wizard, so it uses a special ability to take another standard action: it spits a ball of fire at the wizard, setting him on fire. It has a move action left, which it uses to fly into a better position for its breath weapon. That ends the dragon’s turn.


    It’s the fighter’s turn. He charges the dragon and manages to land a solid blow, dropping the dragon down below half its hit points. Oh—that gives the dragon the opportunity use its breath weapon as an immediate action. A huge cone of fire bursts from the dragon’s mouth, engulfing all four PCs. But at least the dragon is below 500 hit points!


    Now the rogue moves around to flank with the fighter. Ordinarily, that would let the dragon use its tail slap again as an immediate action, but the dragon has used its immediate action already. That’s lucky for the rogue, who actually gets to make an attack this round! Unfortunately, she fails to hit the dragon’s AC of 49.


    The wizard fails to put out the fire, so he takes more damage. Worse yet, the dragon’s breath scoured away the wizard’s fire resistance, so he takes the full amount. He blasts the dragon with a ray of freezing cold, but this isn’t 3rd Edition. The dragon takes normal damage, but it’s not enough to slow it down.


    Finally, the cleric is up. Calling on the power of her god, she swings her halberd at the dragon—a critical hit! The damage isn’t bad, but even better, the wizard gets a nice surge of healing power.

    He’s going to need it—it’s the dragon’s turn again.

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    There were similiar links for race, class, and power source (where the character gets their ability to excel and succeed) but these section really were not that informative. I included the one above primarly because it gives folks an idea of combat. Now we don't know the game mechanics behind things so I will keep my opinion to myself other than this statement:

    Feels like they decided to push the power play even more than with 3rd edition, which was a lot compared to 2nd and 1st edtion D&D. Some people will like it, others will not. I'm guessing I'll like some game mechanics but dislike the power play. I prefer very slow advancement and take the time to explore the character's personality and background. After all, twenty years from now, when I'm swapping D&D stories with my friends and family, it will be the roleplaying, personality, and background and how they were worked into the game as we played that I will remember. It's moments like these......

    1. Such as when Eileen screamed at the site of a manticore.

    2. Such as when she was killed in White Plume Mountain by a troglodyte (around 6th level)and now she's 11th level and deathly afraid of them and will be forever;

    3. Or when she saw a larva like creature crawling across the town street in Ravenloft and screamed "Ariel, we got bugs", fully expecting the paladin to drop her battle and come over and squash the bugs for her.

    To me, that's what D&D will always be about. The great adventures at the time, the roleplaying and laughter at the game table, and telling stories 20 years later.
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    Fri Aug 24, 2007 7:37 am  

    PaulN6 wrote:
    MerricB wrote:
    The APs don't really feel like Greyhawk to me, though I really like them. There are some things that are Greyhawk-like, and others that come from somewhere else entirely.


    Things I like most about the APs were detailed info on a few GH locations that had previously been very sketchy. We've had Diamond Lake, Istivin, Alhaster, Exag, and Spinecastle (plus an earlier article on Hardby). Plus a couple of stat blocks for other places (Eru Tovar, Tonnsburg) .All interesting stuff to build on, tweak, or tone down at your option. Sadly I assume that the end of LG will also mean the end of GH content on WotC as well. Shame as I am building a cool home made gazeteer with all the information.


    Was Exag and Spinecastle part of the AP? I don't think Exag was, not sure about Spinecastle.

    Personally, I think the best GH material in Dungeon has been *outside* the AP.

    Cheers!
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    Fri Aug 24, 2007 10:03 am  

    Eileen, I know it's an extreme example, being a dragon and probably a very powerful one, but the demonstration of 4e combat you posted sounds truly horrible. It certainly seems powerplay to the max.

    The more I learn about 4e, the less I think I'm going to like it. This may be an edition too far for me and my gaming friends and we've played through them all up to now.
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    Fri Aug 24, 2007 10:50 am  

    Ragr

    Yea that's pretty much how it left me feeling as well. All power play no substance. I think the example would have been better if they had given us an idea of how the characters were able to achieve their actions, such as the fighter taking the dragon down to half (or more) hit points in one blow (by my calculations it would have over a 1000 HP). It would have been nice to get an understanding of how the cleric healed without taking an action to do it as well. I'm sure they are new abilities worked into the classes, that in itself is fine, but as the ad reads, it did nothing to attract me, only alienate me further. Heck if I want to be alienated I'll take a trip through Expedition to the Barrier Peaks module.

    It seems that several people feel that D&D is being directed towards bringing in a younger crowd who spends their time playing a lot of computer games, and as a result are use to pushing their games to extremes (kinda like new special effects in a video game, if they are flashy enough people will buy). I feel like that is what they are doing with D&D, giving us new special effects, but first we need to buy the game system because it isn't compatible with whatever the current popular video game lines are (yea, I'm that far behind the times, I can't even name the latest video game system without asking my daughter, I guess I'll go ask....Hang on, I'll be right back......

    She says it's Wii, but beyond that she says didn't know because she prefers to do things old school, like D&D, Guess I raised her right as far as I'm concerned.

    3rd edition and 3. pushed things further than I would have liked but not to the point where I wasn't able or willing to deal with it. Now that the books for 3.5 are winding down, I'll finish off my collection and skip a few that I know I don't want at all (heck I have a few I consider worthless to me already), then I will begin to incorporate the information attempting to make it feel like 1st edition as much as possible. I'll start with the prestige classes.
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    Fri Aug 24, 2007 1:56 pm  

    The dragon combat did sound like powerplay, but I also get the impression that this particular combat features a very powerful monster and characters. Other than that, it really doiens't tlell you much of how things work, and neither does any of the other features. Some things sounds very intriguing, such as weapon realted attack abilities. What? A polearm is now actually worth a damn?! Shocked Happy That makes me interested a bit. Level appropriate racial powers peak my interst slightly less, yet still sound somewhat interesting.
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    Fri Aug 24, 2007 2:04 pm  

    If that's an example of high level play then I'm sure it's toned DOWN from 3.5 play. I'm sure there are prestige class ability and feat builds currently that could make this encounter look easy in comparison.
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    Fri Aug 24, 2007 3:16 pm  

    I think the power curve can only go up. The competition is rightly or wrongly percieved to be WoW and video games - competing for time and for dollars. I personally believe this view of the landscape is flawed and that tabletop RPGS cannot win against MMORPGS and video games, but I don't expect a different view to pervail. Thus, 4e will represent some degree of powerup from 3x, IMO.

    IMO, we will see 5e in 2012 or 2013. In other words, 5e will debut 6 years after 4e. It will, I believe, be the last printed version of the game. Wotc is beginning the transition to an online medium with 4e. They will advance the ball to half court with 5e. And 6e will be fully digital. Unless 4 or 5e fails so miserably that the hobby becomexs imperiled. I don't expect that so I think they will get to try their had at a completely digital game in 6e.

    I will not be their target audience by that time and I suspect I have slipped from the target demographic already.
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    GVD
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    Fri Aug 24, 2007 5:29 pm  

    Once the game has slipped from the printed and table top arena can it really still be considered part of the line of editions? By then it'll be like some unholy merger of corporations like you see in business with media or telecoms. Hasbro buys Blizzard which takes over Wizard's RPG division and we get The World of Dungeons and Dragon Warcraft.
    Black Hand of Oblivion

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    Fri Aug 24, 2007 6:31 pm  

    Don't be too sure that it will be Hasbro that buys Blizzard. It could very well be the other way around(As Blizzard is making very good money). Of course, I see Blizzard buying a controlling interest in Games Workshop(as they like their games) before they would consider buying WotC from Hasbro.
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    Sat Aug 25, 2007 11:23 am  

    I have to say I'm surprised that some of you guys think that the 4e combat example was a step down the power level from 3.5. I'm not disputing your point, but I can honestly say that in many years of playing I've never witnessed anything do 500 damage in one go. Maybe, and I'm sure some of my players would agree, I'm just stingy with the xp and don't let things reach that level.

    I did once witness a summoned Badger kill an Ogre with a single attack (it was a quirky instant kill critical thang), but my group still talk about that many years later. And surely that's the point; memorable events do not need to be epic, just interesting and good fun.

    I still find the example, incomplete as it was, to be a long way from the game I play, or indeed want to play. I agree that a couple of the things looked mildly interesting, but it all resembles a cartoon in vivid colours (not unlike most 3.5 artwork), with lots of bangs and crashes but ultimately a one dimensional experience. And where does the game go after such a power fest? How do you ramp it up for the next challenge.

    I'd like to see an example of a few 1st level characters battling a bugbear before I form a final opinion but it still doesn't look good.
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    Sat Aug 25, 2007 11:45 am  

    If 4th edition is marketed towards a younger crowd who like bigger is bigger is better mentality, do you really thing WOTC would downsize D&D to make it less power hungry. I say no! They will keep pushing the power play up and up while still trying to make a system that is functional. Do you really think level advancement will be slower, or that damage scored will be less, or HP will be downgraded?
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    Eileen of Greyhawk, Prophet of Istus, Messenger of the Gods
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    Sat Aug 25, 2007 5:08 pm  

    Not to belabor the discussion but we don't know the relative hit points of that battle nor how long it had been going on. It could have taken several blows before the one that landed the dragon below 500hp. The intention of that whole combat blurb was to show how tough the dragon is not the PCs.

    Anyhoo, I have seen high level-epic 3.5 games that are HP shattering, especially when you throw in meta-magic (Twinning spells seems popular at my table) and chains of martial feats (They did power-up Power Attack for some dumb reason). Will it be toned down, probably not like I hope. Eileen is right in that their target audience the younger, immediate gratification crowd, not us old school story based RP'ers. This is partly why I am leaning toward a new game system for my Greyhawk campaign.
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    Sat Aug 25, 2007 5:12 pm  

    Cebrion wrote:
    Don't be too sure that it will be Hasbro that buys Blizzard. It could very well be the other way around(As Blizzard is making very good money). Of course, I see Blizzard buying a controlling interest in Games Workshop(as they like their games) before they would consider buying WotC from Hasbro.
    I'll agree on the GW-Blizzard thing, their games were much alike. Hasbro though is a giant in the industry, if they want to get into MMO's they have the scratch to get anyone I'm sure. Blizzard could only buy Wizards away if Hasbro sold them. Then it would be like when Wizards bought TSR, it would change the game industry picture significantly.
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    Sat Aug 25, 2007 7:20 pm  

    I agree we don't know the details of the battle. I posted it to give anyone who hadn't seen it a view. I tried to keep my doubts to myself (probably didn't succeed real well) because I haven't been supportive of the 4th edition idea. Sure I knew it was coming, that I understand. It's the fact that more and more I question if WOTC knows what roleplaying is (or at least was) about in the early 80's. I figure I have given them my dollars. If they choose to no longer support the products I purchased then I must make a choice, to continue with them, or not to continue with them. WOTC has disappointed me more times than pleased me, so the answer is simple for me. They lost a customer.

    I'll continue Greyhawk with 3.5, as well as check out other roleplaying interests I have mentioned. It isn't a right or wrong thing, it just my decision.

    Maybe the game will be superior mechanically. Maybe it will bring things back to roleplaying, maybe it will be nothing more than power play. Either way I gave them the money I could in order to support a hobby I love. Now its time to get my money's worth out of all of these books rather than continue.
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    Eileen of Greyhawk, Prophet of Istus, Messenger of the Gods
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    Mon Aug 27, 2007 8:22 pm  

    The combat was on the fifth or sixth round. Several of the designers of 4e have posted - check James Wyatt's blog for an example of this - saying that there's no way that the fighter would do 500 damage in one blow. (I think Mike Mearls posted that if the fighter did that much damage, it'd be ambushed and killed by the D&D Development team...)

    Cheers!
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    Sun Sep 23, 2007 10:26 am  

    Faith, people! I have not ventured to much into the few tidbits that are known about 4e so far, because I personally doubt that I will ever play that game, with all the oldschool stuff floating around in my bookshelves.

    Now, all I say is that if Arduin, Tekumel and Wilderlands still have devote followers, I personally am pretty sure that Greyhawk, with all the people interested in it right now, will surely remain popular. Smile
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