Myles’ Number 2: Dungeons and Dragons Fifth Edition
In 2014 we saw the release of the newest installment of Dungeons and Dragons. Call it D&D Next, 5.0, Fifth Edition or whatever you want – I’ll just call the system SOLID. The game brought the fundamentals of why someone would want to play a paper and pen RPG right to the forefront. The focus is on exploring the imagination of both the players and the Dungeon Master. It might be the best version of Dungeons and Dragons ever made.
In D&D SOLID ™ they stripped away all of the things that bog down a game of Dungeons and Dragons. There are fewer combat rules, but mistake that for less game – they just streamlined it. They replaced these rules with more customization options for character backgrounds. This is to help you visualize your character’s goals and flaws. What would your character be like if they used to be a devout follower of the deity Pelor only to be scorned by their God? If you played a Rogue who used to be a noble, how would they speak? The rules are there to enhance the role-play and help even shy people get into a character.
This was a huge improvement from the previous version of Dungeons and Dragons. D&D 4.0 had the major flaw of focusing on combat. They adopted a lot of combat rules from various video games. The mechanics of those games worked in a video game environment, but without the audio and visual aids, those mechanics became flavourless in the realm of paper and pen RPG. Sure, there are a lot of different ‘attacks’ one could give their character in 4.0, but without the animation of the character performing the attack, all you can see are numbers. The newest iteration of Dungeons and Dragons realized this mistake and corrected it in a big way. You won’t run into this problem if you adventure or create a world in fifth edition.
If you are still on the fence about it, why not try listening to our Dungeons and Dragons podcast. We are slowly working our way through the adventure included in the Starter Set.