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Aidan
01-15-2009, 12:45 AM
...or do Shadar-kai remind anyone else of the Necromongers from Chronicles of Riddick?

"You keep what you kill!"

Etarnon
01-15-2009, 01:29 AM
lol what's a shardar-kai?

fmitchell
01-15-2009, 02:24 AM
A group of shady humanoids from the Shadowfell. (Shady? Get it?) They're in the 4e MM, and I think in the 3e Fiend Folio.

I haven't seen The Chronicles of Riddick, though, so I can't compare.

Webhead
01-15-2009, 10:41 AM
A group of shady humanoids from the Shadowfell. (Shady? Get it?) They're in the 4e MM, and I think in the 3e Fiend Folio.

I haven't seen The Chronicles of Riddick, though, so I can't compare.

I'm on the other end of this spectrum. I've seen Chronicles but do not recall anything about the Shadar-kai. Will have to research.

FYI, the Chronicles of Riddick video game was awesome...probably better than the second movie.

Rochin
01-15-2009, 11:41 AM
They are very similar to the necromongers, thats why I like em! But I find the "normal" races a bit boring anyhow.

tesral
01-15-2009, 04:01 PM
D&D has always swiped with a will and usually managed to rub the serial numbers off.

Aidan
01-15-2009, 10:53 PM
D&D has always swiped with a will and usually managed to rub the serial numbers off.

That's true. I was noticing that Kuo-tua, the Far Realm and all the Abberent creatures make it easy to make a Call of Cthulhu type game within D`aD.

Webhead
01-15-2009, 10:58 PM
That's true. I was noticing that Kuo-tua, the Far Realm and all the Abberent creatures make it easy to make a Call of Cthulhu type game within D`aD.

And one must not forget that the earliest printings of Deities & Demigods actually included write-ups for Cthulhu and his ilk in the book.

Riftwalker
01-15-2009, 11:23 PM
My favorite is the picture on page 112 of the 3.5 DMG II of the giant flaming eye on top of a mountain.

tesral
01-16-2009, 07:13 AM
And one must not forget that the earliest printings of Deities & Demigods actually included write-ups for Cthulhu and his ilk in the book.

And boy did they fail their "rub the serial numbers off roll". I have a copy of that edition BTW.

Rochin
01-16-2009, 08:54 AM
In the release "Zombies" they(WOTC) ripped off the video game Left 4 Dead almost exactly. They zombies are about 98% similar to the Left 4 Dead ones, the art is not and a few of the abilities and or powers are slightly changed. At first I did not really see it, but then going back and reading the entries and the powers of each "zombie" it became clear what they were trying to do. Kind of sad when the devs have to steal material from a video game, oh wait....well that is the whole 4E isnt it?

Aidan
01-16-2009, 12:13 PM
In the release "Zombies" they(WOTC) ripped off the video game Left 4 Dead almost exactly. They zombies are about 98% similar to the Left 4 Dead ones, the art is not and a few of the abilities and or powers are slightly changed. At first I did not really see it, but then going back and reading the entries and the powers of each "zombie" it became clear what they were trying to do. Kind of sad when the devs have to steal material from a video game, oh wait....well that is the whole 4E isnt it?

How are those zombies differnt from 98% of other zombies portrayed in the popular media? I think it's more likely that both the video game and the devs drew from the same source.

And no, 4e is not a video game, and saying it is doesn't make it so, no matter how many times people parrot it.

Valdar
01-16-2009, 01:25 PM
Haven't seen any of the Riddick movies, either.

There was some thought for a while that Shadar-Kai would be a PC race in PHB2, but looks like that's not the case (it will be Shifter instead).

Rochin
01-16-2009, 02:33 PM
How are those zombies differnt from 98% of other zombies portrayed in the popular media? I think it's more likely that both the video game and the devs drew from the same source.

And no, 4e is not a video game, and saying it is doesn't make it so, no matter how many times people parrot it.


Well the 4 special zombies in Left 4 dead are fairly unique. WOTC or the author of the bit, used that game as an idea for their media. Having read about Left 4 Dead for a while now, way before launch, for WOTC to release their "zombies" article now is hard to mistake for ripping it off.

About 4e being a video game, well everyone I know has compaired it to WOW. Even the head R&D guys have said they wanted to attract people from WOW to DND. I played WOW for all of 10 minutes(5 of which was making my character) and I disliked it very much. I as well as many others can see how 4e is full of WOW goodness(well badness, but that is another post). I used to love DND, i was a fanboy, now I feel wronged at how they put it out. I know many people said the same about 3.0, but 3.0 was still similar to 2nd. With the powers, lack of skill system, and the amount WOTC is ripping off other companies, it is just not the same beast anymore. Will I still play 4e, sure, as it is more of a social thing.

Meeki
01-16-2009, 03:50 PM
Huh... 4e has a skill system, in fact wasn't it take straight from Spycraft's skill system, which was a mixture of AD&D and 3.0? Powers have always been around... every play any of the old Superhero systems? They have powers, they just gave 4e heroes super hero like powers. It is strange to play D&D with crazy named powers.

Also, Shadar-kai are too emo and looky too whimpy to be necromongers, although they are similar. Ripping out people's souls is pretty awesome, being a crying emo child is not.

wbrandel
01-16-2009, 04:20 PM
Also, Shadar-kai are too emo and looky too whimpy to be necromongers, although they are similar. Ripping out people's souls is pretty awesome, being a crying emo child is not.

Having run the Shadar-Kai in an encounter I can say that they are not wimpy at all. Two of them + a blade spider gave my group a good run before fallingto their attacks.

Meeki
01-16-2009, 05:09 PM
I have used the Shadar-Kai too, I just don't like their fluff n' stuff. The monsters are neat, especially the witch.

Grimwell
01-17-2009, 09:58 PM
About 4e being a video game, well everyone I know has compaired it to WOW.
Anecdotal evidence (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anecdotal_evidence) does not make facts. The mechanics of a MMO are nothing like the mechanics behind 4E. MMO's are, by orders of magnitude, much more complicated.

The play may feel like a MMO to you and your friends, but that's also relative to the individual experience and not fact. I don't find myself treating my powers like a hot-bar of skills when I play a MMO, I find the experience to be entirely different -- even if we only cross compare the play of combat.

But... my experience is anecdotal as well. Not fact or truth just because it's my experience. (this line is here to point out that I'm not right just because I differ).



Even the head R&D guys have said they wanted to attract people from WOW to DND.

This is anecdotal only until you link to that fact. Then it's just a factual quote of what the R&D guy said and has much more merit.

To be honest, I don't know anyone who makes fantasy games that does not want a slice of the WoW pie. 1% of 11 million is over 100K people. How do you argue with that kind of math? You don't. You put out a product and hope for a certain percentage of crossover.

Was 4E D&D created just to steal the WoW audience though? That's a more powerful question. If the answer is "Yes." then the entire "4E feels like a MMO." train of responses would not only be right, they would validate the intent of the designers behind 4E D&D.

I'm going to hazard a wild opinion and put more stock in the unproven notion that the designers behind 4E D&D were already making the game, and at some point one of the guys in marketing said "You know, if we can tweak the art and style just a little, and change the terms you use for combat to "powers" I can market this to some of those WoW players and grab us a larger share of audience!"

Note that my hypothetical marketer is not evil for the suggestion, that's his job (finding new customers). Nor would the designers be evil for saying "You know, I don't care if we call it 'Powers' for you or 'Attacks' like we have in the docs... so let's go for it." and helping his friend in Marketing get the job done.

I'm taking this wild opinion because nobody at a company like Wizards of the Coast works alone. They go to meetings with other departments, set agendas, and then get to work on those agendas with regular checks and meetings to be sure that everyone is doing their part according to plan. That's how products get made.

Beyond feeling the need to explain that, and point out that even 100,000 gamers saying "4E feels like a MMO." does not mean that 4E was designed to be one. :)

Rochin
01-18-2009, 10:35 AM
Here is the video I watched where the guys working on 4e DND talked about it and WOW.

http://www.g4tv.com/mmoreport/videos/21318/The_MMO_Report_4th_Edition_DD_Special.html

Kind of speaks for its self.

Meeki
01-18-2009, 11:51 AM
Are you talking about the part where they talk about the differences in WoW and D&D4e or the part where they drew from 1st edition to build the 4 types of classes and use terminology from MMO's?

The devs specifically state that it is different from an MMO and what they "drew" from MMO's was the terminology not the design concepts.

Grimwell
01-19-2009, 01:04 PM
Yeah, that's what I heard too. The core four roles existed in D&D going all the way back to the first edition, what was taken from the MMO's was the terminology used to describe those roles.

Now the question is "Why?" and I think I have the answer.

When your four primary roles are described as "Fighter, Cleric, Wizard, Thief" you are stuck describing any class in those terms. A Bard is a bit of a figher, wizard, and thief... a Barbarian is a bit like a fighter, but does more damage and wears less armor...

That's viable language, but can make it hard to explain things.

With Defender, Controller, Striker, and Leader you can go with descriptions that make it easy.

Take the fighter vs. barbarian for instance. Fighters are defenders, we know that. I don't know what the Barbarian is slated to be (someone please let me know if it's previewed and I missed it), but I'm going to wager that it's either a striker (huge damage, soft armor) or it's a melee controller (handling anyone in a burst of 1, etc.).

Being able to describe that as "Fighters are defenders and Barbarians are strikers" is easier than saying "Fighters are fighters and barbarians are sorta like fighters but different in these ways..."

We suddenly have language that is independent of the classes themselves to describe them.

Valdar
01-19-2009, 02:47 PM
Take the fighter vs. barbarian for instance. Fighters are defenders, we know that. I don't know what the Barbarian is slated to be (someone please let me know if it's previewed and I missed it), but I'm going to wager that it's either a striker (huge damage, soft armor) or it's a melee controller (handling anyone in a burst of 1, etc.).


Your first wager was correct- Barbarian is now the great-weapon striker. It's previewed on D&DI, but you'd need an account to view it now.

Aidan
01-19-2009, 03:06 PM
I found a list of the 8 classes that are going to be in PHB2. Most of them we know what they're going to be but there are a couple I don't know yet.

Avenger - divine striker?
Barbarian - primal striker
Bard - arcane leader
Druid - primal controller
Invoker - divine controller
Shaman - primal leader?
Sorceror - arcane ?
Warden - primal defender

The one I'm least sure about is Sorceror. It makes sense that they'd be a controller or a striker, but I'm not sure how they're going to make them sufficiently differnt from Wizard or Warlock in that case.

fmitchell
01-19-2009, 03:15 PM
Your first wager was correct- Barbarian is now the great-weapon striker. It's previewed on D&DI, but you'd need an account to view it now.

As opposed to the Great Weapon Defender, which is still one build of the Fighter.

(le sigh)

This is when I get nostalgic about Metagaming's The Fantasy Trip, in which there were only two "classes", Hero and Wizard.

Back on topic, sort of ... if you were to convert D&D 4e (or earlier editions) to a science-fantasy world with star travel, aliens, and "mind powers" instead of planes, monsters, and magic, what critters would survive?

Grimwell
01-19-2009, 04:06 PM
Back on topic, sort of ... if you were to convert D&D 4e (or earlier editions) to a science-fantasy world with star travel, aliens, and "mind powers" instead of planes, monsters, and magic, what critters would survive?

I think that depends on the individual GM, or the person paid to develop the sourcebook. :)

Converting the rules is a challenge because some things might not work so well outside of the pure fantasy setting (though I think 4E is very flexible and could work very well). The critters are really table dressing and after a system is settled upon I could give you justification for "space" versions of just about anything. I might not give good justifications, but I could conjure a reason for them to have survived and advanced ;)