Dungeons and Dragons is getting a new edition, this will be the fifth edition since it was originally published in 1974
Wizards of the Coast, who bought the game from T$R in 1997, have released details on the fifth edition of the most iconic game in tabletop history. It has spawned a brilliant animated series, a series of Movies of variable quality, some of the best episodes of Community and is the basic frame of reference used by gamers worldwide.
The fourth edition hadn’t impressed most gamers for a plethora of reasons; personally I found the addition of miniatures and cards to flip to the game killed off the impetus to role-play which is kind of a major problem when playing a role-playing game.
That wasn’t the only issue with it but that one is my main gripe.
The fifth edition got off to a rocky start when celebrated game designer Monte Cook who came aboard as a co-designer, abruptly left the project citing differences with Wizards, though he made sure people knew he had no issue with the game itself.
The biggest change in the new edition is not so much in the system, it’s still D20, the classes are similar etc, the biggest change is in what you need to run the game.
In previous incarnations if you wanted to play a campaign in a D&D setting, you’d buy a Dungeon Master’s Guide and a Player’s hand book, this gave you enough information to run a game of your own and play any campaign setting you also chose to buy.
That’s a lot of money to pay out for something, especially if you’re happy just to play pre-generated campaigns. So Wizards have adopted an approach that will make D&D less an intimidating collection of tomes and more accessible to a casual player while keeping the resources Dungeon Masters require to craft their own world
They are giving away the basic rules free, so if you buy a campaign setting you can run it with out needing any of what used to be considered “Core” books. Those who prefer a more traditional approach are still being catered for: a Dungeon Master’s guide is forthcoming too.
Launched simultaneously with the D&D Starter Set, Basic D&D will include the material needed to create characters and advance to 20th level. In August, with the release of the Player’s Handbook, Basic D&D will expand to include the essential monsters, magic items and DM rules needed to run the game, along with the rules for wilderness, dungeon, and urban adventuring.
The release details are:
Dungeons & Dragons Starter Set (July 15, 2014); Fantasy Role-playing Fundamentals; Includes six dice, rules for characters levels 1-5, a 64-page rulebook with adventure, and 5 pre-generated characters.Great way of introducing your friends to the basic game.
Player’s Handbook (August 19, 2014);
Hoard of the Dragon Queen (August 19, 2014); Tyranny of Dragons Adventure;
Monster Manual (September 17, 2014);
The Rise of Tiamat (October 21, 2014);
Tyranny of Dragons Adventure Dungeon Master’s Guide (November 18, 2014);