D&D 4e Archive

  • 4e classes are interesting because, by and large, they're pretty distinctive.  There comes a point in play when you know they're working. The Barbarian rounds a corner and becomes a damage output machine. The Warden stands his ground against an impossi...

    Streamlining Snags

    4e classes are interesting because, by and large, they're pretty distinctive. There comes a point in play when you know they're working. The Barbarian rounds a corner and becomes a damage output machine. The Warden stands his ground against an impossi...

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  • First, here's an important qualifier. I like 4e a lot.  I think the combat is a ton of fun, and it's full of good ideas, so please do not take what is about to follow as a broad criticism of 4e. It's not. It's a solution to a problem I wrestle with at ...

    Keeping 4e’s Skin

    First, here's an important qualifier. I like 4e a lot. I think the combat is a ton of fun, and it's full of good ideas, so please do not take what is about to follow as a broad criticism of 4e. It's not. It's a solution to a problem I wrestle with at ...

    Continue Reading...

  • There was a great discussion on twitter yesterday about what might go into a hypothetical RPG for new players based on changing 4e or Pathfinder.  Lots of good ideas, but it also reminded me of another idea that I’ve been sitting on for a while, one ...

    Leveling Up To 1

    There was a great discussion on twitter yesterday about what might go into a hypothetical RPG for new players based on changing 4e or Pathfinder. Lots of good ideas, but it also reminded me of another idea that I’ve been sitting on for a while, one ...

    Continue Reading...

  • I often feel that the places that 4e falls down are often a result of false starts.  The game may have the core of a good idea, but fail to pursue it far enough.  One of the best examples of this is tempo - the pace of encounters.Historically, D&D ...

    Keeping Tempo in 4e

    I often feel that the places that 4e falls down are often a result of false starts. The game may have the core of a good idea, but fail to pursue it far enough. One of the best examples of this is tempo - the pace of encounters.Historically, D&D ...

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  • There is no reason that 4e character classes could not be designed radically differently.  WOTC has a clear template for them (a flawed one) and there's a knee-jerk instinct to follow that same pattern, but I don't think anything makes that necessary.I...

    Breaking the Mould

    There is no reason that 4e character classes could not be designed radically differently. WOTC has a clear template for them (a flawed one) and there's a knee-jerk instinct to follow that same pattern, but I don't think anything makes that necessary.I...

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  • In my discussion of the role of skills in spotlighting character awesomeness in 4e (or more precisely, the lack of this) the counterpoint of solving the problem in the fiction of the game was raised and I think this merited some attention. There are a ...

    Fiction, Fairness and 4e

    In my discussion of the role of skills in spotlighting character awesomeness in 4e (or more precisely, the lack of this) the counterpoint of solving the problem in the fiction of the game was raised and I think this merited some attention. There are a ...

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  • I had a good twitter discussion yesterday about the structure of adventures that lead to me chewing on what it would take to do a breakdown of a fantasy adventure (a quest, at the suggestion of gamefiend) similar to the one in SOTC.  This lead to some ...

    Interchangeability and 4e

    I had a good twitter discussion yesterday about the structure of adventures that lead to me chewing on what it would take to do a breakdown of a fantasy adventure (a quest, at the suggestion of gamefiend) similar to the one in SOTC. This lead to some ...

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  • Someone made an assertion online that a 4e fight is designed to last 5 rounds.  That's an interesting assertion, and I've had people express that it both sounds too long and too short.  If it's true, it's a very interesting point that allows you to cru...

    5 Rounds of Nerdy Math

    Someone made an assertion online that a 4e fight is designed to last 5 rounds. That's an interesting assertion, and I've had people express that it both sounds too long and too short. If it's true, it's a very interesting point that allows you to cru...

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  • An interesting discussion the other day got me thinking about the fiction of 4e.  Not in terms of novels and the like (though I'm sure those would be an interesting subject) but rather in the fiction implicit in the game.  This is not, to my mind, abou...

    The Fiction of 4e

    An interesting discussion the other day got me thinking about the fiction of 4e. Not in terms of novels and the like (though I'm sure those would be an interesting subject) but rather in the fiction implicit in the game. This is not, to my mind, abou...

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  • Ok, let's do this thing:Climbing the MountainOk, the mountain.  It's big, it's windy, it's snowy, there are bad things living there that want to eat your face.  You guys need to get to the top, probably because there's some ancient city or something up...

    Building a Challenge

    Ok, let's do this thing:Climbing the MountainOk, the mountain. It's big, it's windy, it's snowy, there are bad things living there that want to eat your face. You guys need to get to the top, probably because there's some ancient city or something up...

    Continue Reading...