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D&D: 3.5 vs 4 vs 5

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hitbyambulance
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D&D: 3.5 vs 4 vs 5

Post by hitbyambulance » Fri May 17, 2019 4:55 am

i'm planning on getting the nephews (ages 11 and 6) and my son (18) into this soon. i still have the 2nd edition rules which is what i DM'ed years and years ago, but i figured i'd try out a more modern incarnation. the library has D&D books for versions 3.5, 4 and 5. which ... is the best?

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Re: D&D: 3.5 vs 4 vs 5

Post by Zarathud » Fri May 17, 2019 8:10 am

5 is more streamlined and is what I'm teaching my 12 year old.
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Re: D&D: 3.5 vs 4 vs 5

Post by Blackhawk » Fri May 17, 2019 10:00 am

D&D: Wargaming rules that they tweaked for adventuring, released in 'expansions' based on level.

AD&D 1st Edition: an experiment in putting everything in on place that caught on so well that it essentially killed the main branch.

AD&D 2nd Edition: A polishing of 1st Edition. This was still based on wargaming rules with convoluted systems from that subgenre.

D&D 3rd Edition: An attempt to clean up the rules, a 'reboot.' It wasn't well done, and was panned. This was the first release after TSR went under and the brand was purchased by Wizards of the Coast.

D&D 3.5: A fix of 3rd. It took away the wargaming legacy and replaced it with more consistent rules (like when you roll a d20, higher is always better.) It also made things incredibly complex, with a written rule for every eventuality. Eventually became bloated.

D&D 4th Edition: An attempt to bring back a dwindling player base by appealing to video game fans. A horrid slog that saw D&D off the top of the RPG charts for the first time in history.

Pathfinder: A 3rd party rewrite of 3.5, sometimes called D&D 3.75. Much like 3.5, but more polished and even more complex. Took over from D&D at the top of the charts.

D&D 5th Edition: A successful attempt to modernize the D&D rules. All of the flavor of 1st/2nd edition, combined with the consistency of 3.5, but without the unnecessary complexity. Instead of trying to define every possible eventuality with a complex rule or table, the rules were written with intentional 'wiggle room' that let the DM (and common sense) rule on all the tiny variants on the fly.

I'd say that all of them are good games, but I can't see myself recommending AD&D or 4th Edition to anyone. For kids? I'd say 5e, hands down. Easier to learn, easier to teach, easier to prep, easier to run.
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Re: D&D: 3.5 vs 4 vs 5

Post by Smoove_B » Fri May 17, 2019 10:08 am

As someone that was trying to set up a "classic" AD&D (1st Edition) campaign recently, I'd also add an unofficial AD&D 1.5 rule set (that I was apparently playing and had no idea) that included the use of Unearthed Arcana. I was initially confused when I was re-reading the AD&D rules, but I eventually realized what I was remembering was the Frankenstein rules we were playing that were a mix of updates from Dragon Magazine and Unearthed Arcana. Many (most?) of those unofficial tweaks were then incorporated into AD&D 2nd Edition and then further expanded (monetized) by supplementary rule books.

Anyway, I just wanted to add that as for 30+ years I really thought we were playing AD&D, but that just wasn't the case.

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Re: D&D: 3.5 vs 4 vs 5

Post by hentzau » Fri May 17, 2019 10:14 am

5th Edition. I love me some 4E, but 5E is the way to go.

And if you want a good starting off point, I cannot recommend the 5th Edition Starter Set more. Fabulous fun, great rules to get you started again without overwhelming you, and a top-notch starter campaign. Note this is the original one, not the more recent Stranger Things themed version.
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Re: D&D: 3.5 vs 4 vs 5

Post by Redfive » Fri May 17, 2019 2:37 pm

Redundant post is redundant, but 5e would be my vote too. Great system.
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Re: D&D: 3.5 vs 4 vs 5

Post by hitbyambulance » Fri May 17, 2019 3:58 pm

alright, v5 it is. thanks for the input.

(and now i'm also considering the latest Gamma World.. naaah)

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Re: D&D: 3.5 vs 4 vs 5

Post by Blackhawk » Fri May 17, 2019 5:14 pm

No! You get more input whether you like it or not!

Well, refreshed input. Do what hentzau said, and get that starter set. It's fantastic.
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Re: D&D: 3.5 vs 4 vs 5

Post by hentzau » Fri May 17, 2019 5:15 pm

hitbyambulance wrote:
Fri May 17, 2019 3:58 pm
alright, v5 it is. thanks for the input.

(and now i'm also considering the latest Gamma World.. naaah)
I would be willing to part with my Gamma World set (based on 4E) for a very reasonable price. I have the base set and the first (only) expansion.
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Re: D&D: 3.5 vs 4 vs 5

Post by hentzau » Fri May 17, 2019 8:11 pm

Hold on...I’m watching the D&D live stream event and they just announced a new D&D Essentials box set...new adventure set in phandelin. Character creation. Up to level 6. Cards for magic items, quests, combat cheat sheet cards, dice, double sided map of Phandelin and region, DM’s screen. Set up to be playable by only 2 people using new sidekick rules. Available at target exclusively on June 18.
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Re: D&D: 3.5 vs 4 vs 5

Post by Smoove_B » Fri May 17, 2019 8:23 pm

D&D Rick and Morty coming this Fall...
“Dungeons & Dragons vs Rick and Morty: Tabletop Roleplaying Game Adventure” will include everything those looking to dive into D&D will need to get started. D&D partnered up with Adult Swim to bring the dysfunctional family of the popular animated show to the tabletop game in a boxed set. The adventure can accommodate up to five players, according to a press release.
I have the graphic novel. Should have seen this coming.

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