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BPIJonathan

I'll be superamalgamated!
Validated User
Re: Goodman on succes of 4E...

I saw the quote as well. It was Mr Mearls lead by, I think, Mr Rouse.
And you dont find comments like that from them to be at all self serving? Ive not seen any indication in local markets that 4.0 has done as well as 3.x, over a standard time period. Which is not to say that 4.0 hasnt done well, its done well enough that WotC is going to keep pushing it for awhile. Now, you should not take this to read I dont like 4.0. I do, its a fine game. However admittedly there are games I like more.
 

BPIJonathan

I'll be superamalgamated!
Validated User
I don't think anyone knows what the best strategy for 3PP. Obviously each of the major 3PP is charting a different path. Some are still swimming with the big shark (WotC) but others seem to be content to dominate smaller ponds.
Let me tell you a secret about publishing. You design a book, put in some love, release it to the wild and hope like hell that the public feels the same way you do about it. 3PP/Small Press Publishers, are never going to sell in the same volume that the big dogs do, but we do try to release what our fan base is wanting. My sales are excellent, but cant compare to WotC on any day of the week.
 

drek

Registered User
Validated User
Video games are the big one. D&D and games should go together like peanut butter and Nutella, and 4E in particular, with its airtight combat mechanics, could be translated almost as-is and make for a fabulous turn-based tactical RPG.
That's actually my biggest grief with 4e. The system plays fairly well on the tabletop (as a tactical game) but would be difficult to translate as is into a real-time or semi-real time video, and it would mildly painful to translate as a turn-based game. I can see the interface in my head, and it's just as intuitive or pretty as Guild Wars, WoW, or FF Tactics. Or, you know, Pokemon.

D&D has actually become less friendly for that sort of purpose with each new edition. I wished they had hired a real (computer) game designer to help from the early stages.
 

jacobkosh

Registered User
Validated User
That's actually my biggest grief with 4e. The system plays fairly well on the tabletop (as a tactical game) but would be difficult to translate as is into a real-time or semi-real time video, and it would mildly painful to translate as a turn-based game. I can see the interface in my head, and it's just as intuitive or pretty as Guild Wars, WoW, or FF Tactics. Or, you know, Pokemon.
I...really have no idea where you're coming from at all on this. There are far worse and less intuitive things for a hypothetical D&D tactical game to look like than WoW or Pokemon. The number of people who play WoW and nothing else speaks to the degree of ease that even people who are otherwise non-gamers find with its interface.
 

drek

Registered User
Validated User
I...really have no idea where you're coming from at all on this. There are far worse and less intuitive things for a hypothetical D&D tactical game to look like than WoW or Pokemon.
...A 4e game couldn't have an intuitive WoW-ish interface without some major contorting. That's what I'm saying. 4e's system (as written) sucks even more than 3e's system (as written) for use in computer games.

I think it's possible to develop a system with most of 4e's features, utterly playable on the tabletop, without sacrificing a nigh-perfect compatibility with a hypothetical MMO, Balder's Gate style adventures, and an online virtual tabletop.

(not that I think WoW's interface is the perfect example, or even close. Actually, I think WoW's vanilla interface is a bit untidy.)

Some problems I perceive --

* The big one: Some powers require a selection of more than one target, some even a selection of both a friendly target and an enemy. It's not an impossible issue to deal with -- it makes for some awkward clicking, not elegant or fun.

Ideally, a player should supply one noun and a verb for a given action. I haven't played WoW in a very long time, so I can't be 100 certain, but I doubt there's single power that requires selection of multiple targets in that game. There certainly isn't in Guild Wars.

* The various classes that can mark more or less require that origin of the mark viewable to everyone, in order to make wise tactical decisions. It's mostly fine, albeit inelegant, if you only have a few PCs. Not so much if you have, say, fifteen PCs working together, or worse, a battle of a hundred PCs verses a hundred PCs.

* It's not balanced with PvP in mind, not even on a small scale. Admittedly WoW has the same problem (to a lesser degree) seemingly without effecting the bottom line.

* Interrupts work fine in online games that work in real time, dependent on the player's tolerance for arcade-ish elements. It adds another step to turn-based games, increasing the complexity and time required for each turn. A solution could be setting up interrupts during your own turn. (for example -- an action that attacks another character and sets you interrupt his next attempt at using an ability.)

Most popular turn-based games on consoles that have interrupts introduce them as arcade elements. That's fine, but not really in the spirit of the 4e rules as written.
 

Nahualt

A badder Santa
Validated User
Some problems I perceive --

* The big one: Some powers require a selection of more than one target, some even a selection of both a friendly target and an enemy. It's not an impossible issue to deal with -- it makes for some awkward clicking, not elegant or fun.

Ideally, a player should supply one noun and a verb for a given action. I haven't played WoW in a very long time, so I can't be 100 certain, but I doubt there's single power that requires selection of multiple targets in that game. There certainly isn't in Guild Wars..
WOW sort of does this(misdirect, tricks of the trade,etc), I don't think it would be too difficult to build up a system that handles this type of power.

* The various classes that can mark more or less require that origin of the mark viewable to everyone, in order to make wise tactical decisions. It's mostly fine, albeit inelegant, if you only have a few PCs. Not so much if you have, say, fifteen PCs working together, or worse, a battle of a hundred PCs verses a hundred PCs..
Raid marks in WOW could do this, as for 15 PCs vs 15 Pcs 4E wasnt build to handle that type of gaming. Concessions would have to be made. But what PC rpg has tranlated faithfully every aspect of a PNP rpg?

* It's not balanced with PvP in mind, not even on a small scale. Admittedly WoW has the same problem (to a lesser degree) seemingly without effecting the bottom line..
4E is not designed for PVP. Just make a PVE game and change the rules dor PVP like COH does.

* Interrupts work fine in online games that work in real time, dependent on the player's tolerance for arcade-ish elements. It adds another step to turn-based games, increasing the complexity and time required for each turn. A solution could be setting up interrupts during your own turn. (for example -- an action that attacks another character and sets you interrupt his next attempt at using an ability.).
Magic the Gathering video game handled the interrupts quite well, as for real time well thats what the casting bar represents.
 

eepop

Retired User
Also, you could easily do something like is done in Vanguard: Saga of Heroes where you have an offensive target and a defensive target.

Even something as simple as
Numpad 1 sets beneficial target to self
Numpad 2 sets beneficial target to party member 2
Numpad 3 sets beneficial target to party member 3
Numpad 4 sets beneficial target to party member 4
Numpad 5 sets beneficial target to party member 5


Then you set your detrimental target by clicking or cycling through with TAB.


Its hardly a deal breaker.
 

Catfish

Abominable Caftan
Validated User
Translating 4e into a turn-based tactical RPG would require little effort on the mechanical end. Coding the rules, automating the rolls, and creating a clickable map would get you most of the way there.
 

Potted Plant

Power Flower
RPGnet Member
Validated User
The card game version of Pokemon required as much math and reading as any tabletop game should, and it was largely popular among elementary aged school children.

Saying that someone needs to read through a mountain of text before they get to play the game is part of what keeps D&D and other tabletop games hidden in the basement.
So if I understand you correctly, you think that Hasbro should have ditched the whole idea of a traditional tabletop RPG with the newest edition of D&D. And instead they should have gone for an innovative new approach and published and RPG that is as easy to get into as card games and MMORPGs and that would appeal to mass market in the fashion of Pokemon and WoW.

Yeah, pulling off something like that successfully would have been like striking a gold mine for Hasbro and D&D. Though from the perspective of traditional RPGs it would have mattered about as much as the success of Pokemon and WoW did.

The key, of course, is pulling off something like that successfully. A lot of people have drummed for an easily approachable RPG like this in the past. Some have even tried publishing them. Unsuccessfully. Published games have ended up as fringe curiosities.

The huge risk in an attempt like this is that the game would appeal for neither the mass market nor the gamers, causing a total flop. Hasbro does not really strike me as a company who would take that sort of risk.

And although the idea sounds really good, in practice it is far from easy to design a game with an appeal like that. Many have tried and failed.

Of course, anyone who actually succeeds is probably going to end up as famous as Gygax and Arneson. And with any luck, quite rich as well. So if someone has an idea, why not give it a go. Plenty of widespread inventions and successful companies have started in someone's garage.
 
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