Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Peace in Our Time? Ok, Maybe Not...

Just wanted to post this for the peeps, in case you missed it. Good on Ethan Gilsdorf for asking the question. Gildorf's a good guy and met with one of my classes virtually last year. Anyway, I'm not quite sure what to take from this answer. Mearls could have slam dunked it, but didn't.

Gilsdorf: When I contacted you last fall, you and your colleagues at Wizards spoke about how the major goal for this rules revamp was big picture, brand and relevance stuff — how to unite all the warring tribes; end the editions wars; get older, lapsed players to play again; and get younger generations excited about D&D. The changes you’re talking about here seem a little smaller-scale. Can you point to some bigger-picture ways you are addressing these issues?

Mearls: The really big questions are, in some ways, still up in the air. Right now, we’re sort of heads down, focusing on small details for the playtest. We have some fairly big ideas we’re working on in terms of RPGs as a whole, but that stuff is still fairly far off on the horizon. Right now, we really are down in the weeds in terms of details, and you’re right that the stuff we’re talking about right now is fairly small in terms of the big picture. However, that big picture still isn’t in focus. I think a mistake we made in the past was to try to make these big, grandiose statements, but in doing that we lost track of the core elements of what people enjoy about RPGs. We also ended up touting things that we couldn’t actually execute on, and no one wants that to happen again.With all that said, we’re definitely thinking big picture. That work is taking place, but it’s not ready for prime time.

12 comments:

  1. The really big questions are, in some ways, still up in the air. Right now, we’re sort of heads down, focusing on small details for the playtest.

    This is so backwards.

    Mr Griswold: I'm a big picture guy. I'm taking the family to Wally World!

    Mr. Mearls: I'm going on vacation too! How much gas should we put in the car? What kind of food should we take with us? Equal amounts of vegetables, fruit and meat? What about cheese? Alcohol or soda? What kind of Alcohol? I know! I could do an online poll!

    Mr. Griswold: Where are you going Mike? That might help you answer your questions.

    Mr. Mearls: Right now, we really are down in the weeds in terms of details, and you’re right that the stuff we’re talking about right now is fairly small in terms of the big picture or where we are even headed. BUT we are going to take our new car out for a test drive on May 24th!

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  2. Hey burnedfx, I sense some serious passion for the game these past few days :)

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    1. @greg

      http://thedelvers.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/05/vacation-mearls.jpg

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    2. Nice.

      "I found out a long time ago.
      It's a long way down the holiday road."
      -L. Buckingham

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  3. Well-said, Burnedfx! This is completely ass-backwards. How can they possibly be working on details when they don't even know what they're trying to accomplish? Mearls does not exactly inspire confidence and I'm sure it will come as no surprise to any of us that this new 'edition' will become "Colossal Blunder, Mark II."

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  4. Mearls: "I think a mistake we made in the past was to try to make these big, grandiose statements"

    Oh, like how you are going to make a new edition of the game that will unite all the editions? Nothing I've read so far convinces me of that. And if you manage to pull it off, I'll tip my hat off to you but won't be opening my wallet and handing over any money. Once burned, twice shy...

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  5. Gee, do you think we've been played? /sarcasm

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  6. Obviously not, but the point remains that I don't appreciate my chain being yanked.

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  7. Just to clarify, the sarcasm was not directed at you, and I DO think we were played.

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  8. I've known too many people that were "big picture guys" that weren't able to focus on any details and never got stuff done.

    Still, I maintain my prediticon that while this game won't be as horrible to old-school sensibilities as 4e, it's not going to be a huge success among the OSR crowd.

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    1. I agree with your point. Peter Molyneux is well known for being one of those big picture guys, going so far as to shit on his previous game to tout how much better his next one will be.

      Regardless, just like Mr. Griswold, he has a mission with a moose and knows exactly what theme park he wants to get to.

      Mearls can't see the forest for the tress.

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