D&D 4.0 – my first impressions

I just got my copies of the books and I have to say… it’s…. weird. It is far more a change than I expected.

What I have noticed is that it has tried to do a few of things …

Simplify things – For example, instead of saves and defenses, we just now have just defenses. Also there are only 12 or 13 skills and all they do is ad +5 to an attempt. There is not really many penalties as much as there are more bonuses, like instead of using a weapon without the proficiency just means you don’t get the weapon prof bonus. Also, class abilities, spells, and the like are all summed up in the Power system. Everything is a power now.

Rid D&D of the “cookie-cutter” classes – classes are no longer cookie cutter with specific class abilities at specific levels. We have A LOT more options to play with and customize yoru character. You can choose a specific build option but as the name implies, they are optional.

Make low level play more fun – because you have more options, low level play is more “fun”. I heard people saying they could do a lot more at first level.

Someone I know that’s in the industry said that it was basically one part collectible card game, one part World of Warcraft, and one part role playing game. I think what he meant buy the CCG aspect is the powers because they tend to be encapsulated effects that don’t change much based on anything the character has or does. I can easily see a set of “power cards” being released at some point. I do not know WoW that well, but more than one person has told me this is D&D WoW-ised.

I thought they would be dumbing it down and I can say for sure that it is not. It is taking a lot more of what people liked about the old d20 system, buildng on that and throwing out a lot of the stuff people did not like. The one thing I am surprised at is they kept Attack of Opportunity. It is different though. It is simplified and called opportunity attack.

Still going through it myself but so far it is… interesting, to say the least. Definitely different.

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