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Is 4e WoW?
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Thread: Is 4e WoW?

  1. #1
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    Is 4e WoW?

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    In the spirit of good natured discussion, let us broach the subject that has been on the lips of many from well before 4th Edition was released. World of Warcraft has topped 5 million subscribers, many of whom have spent thousands of hours in that game. Has WoTC sold out its customer base to try to attract some of these players into the pen & paper games market?

    I'll just sit this out for a moment and see where it goes... *sits back and relaxes, getting ready for a good show*

    Developer for Darkage Warlord, a Pen & Paper Games exclusive Medieval Wargame.

    If you are in the DC metro area and like to trade D&D minis (1.0 or 2.0), please send me a PM!

  2. #2
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    Hmmm, thread title ask one thing, thread text ask another thing.

    Obviously, the one game isn't the other, although I see a fair bit of similarity in spirit and terminology.

    Has WotC sold out its customer base? I'd wager that we're unlikely to have an objective answer, unless someone here happens to work high in the inner circles of that company. You can make the argument that they have, especially if you love 3.X and dislike 4e, or you can argue that they've improved a game that was getting too bulked out with options...

    All I'd say is that they made a business decision, offered me a product, and I chose to buy it and use it. Ain't capitalism grand?
    I'm not stupid, I'm not expendable, and I'm not going! (But I'll happily be the GM...)

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    Hm...


    "Fighter" in plate: WoW: Yes 3e: Yes 4e: No
    Gnomes: WoW: Yes 3e: Yes 4e: Gno
    Crafting: WoW: Yes 3e: Yes 4e: No
    Druids: WoW: Yes 3e: Yes 4e: No
    Pets: WoW: Yes 3e: Yes 4e: No
    Copious magic items: WoW: Yes 3e: Yes 4e: No
    Defined world: WoW: Yes 3e: Yes 4e: No

    Conclusion: 3e is WoW.

    Additional conclusion: Cherry-picked evidence says what you want it to.

    Edit: Tables would be nice to have
    Last edited by Valdar; 07-08-2008 at 10:24 PM.

  4. #4
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    I do not believe 4e is WoW. I do believe 4e took some of the worst concepts from WoW. I believe an attempt to lure away or crossover WoW players to DnD by way of creating similarities is counter-productive and short term.

    I will further predict that the surge is a trend brought on by a number of socio-economic factors and will fall flat within a year or two leaving DnD and probably WotC on the Hasbro chopping block if they have a glut of inventory. That expends my divination for the day.
    "Conformity is the jailer of freedom and the enemy of growth." - JFK

    "If we don't believe in freedom of expression for people we despise, we don't believe in it at all."
    - Noam Chomsky

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    I would say that anyone who believes either IP to exist in a vacuum is a least slightly naive. I'm virtually certain that at some point in its conception WoW (and likely every Warcraft game ever produced) had D&D to thank for its inspiration. I'm sure the game designers were big D&D nerds back in the 70's and 80's and decided to take those ideas a make a computer game out of them.

    Likewise, I'm sure that on at least some level, WotC looked upon WoW for inspiration. It is arguably the most popular computer game ever played and I'm sure that had some WotC big-wigs wiping the drool from their chins as they dreamed about making such a big splash in the Pen-and-Paper RPG industry.

    In short, I think WoW ultimately grew out of and fed off of D&D to that point that it has become its own "entity" and now D&D has seen that it might learn a thing or two from its mutant offspring.

    Is 4e intrinsically WoW? No. They are two seperate entities. Can it be made to resemble WoW? Sure. Why not. That's not necessarily a bad thing unless you're talking about making 4e "play" like WoW "plays" (that is, trying to make it like a computer game with dice). Actually, a lot of the ideas behind the universe of WoW (the races, creatures, factions, etc.) could really be turned into a cool setting by an inspired GM. Therein lies the crux. I think 4e will ultimately be what you make it. You can make it D&D if you want to...you can make it WoW if you want to...you can make it some kind of twisted half-breed. Or you can make it something else entirely. WotC doesn't own your imagination. You're free to do or not do whatever you like with what's there. It's your game...your choice.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Webhead View Post
    In short, I think WoW ultimately grew out of and fed off of D&D to that point that it has become its own "entity" and now D&D has seen that it might learn a thing or two from its mutant offspring.
    im ganna have to agree with this. I think DnD is an insperation for alot of things in the video game, and even book and movie market.

    I do think they pulled some aspects of WoW in to 4e. The biggest one ive noticed is lumping classes in to types(which i personally dont like) and the must have of certain classes ie cleric, and tank(paladin/fighter) which i also dont like. Both these originated in MMORPG's like Everquest and Anarchy online, and where made more widly known in WoW.

    But 4e isnt WoW because there is an actual World of Warcraft table top game setting. But I think WoTC would be smart business wise to capitalize on WoW sucsess and try and draw people into the pnp game realm, and i can see why if they did, emulate certain things of wow.

    just my 2cp
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    Quote Originally Posted by Webhead View Post
    It's your game...your choice.
    Is it? I doubt most GM's get to really say that. Even my old group of 20yrs had to be sold on something new. (If you think I dislike 4e, sheesh. But much of that is time and money. No time to relearn and no desire to pay to do it.)

    I am also starting to be irked by the argument that you can make it into anything you want. I can sculpt a turd and paint it gold. Want a gold medal for your suggestion? Can you roleplay in WoW? Yup. Is it desirable? No. (Please do not argue with me here, if you like it fine, go do it, really, go away. Grown ups are talking. Shoo, you bother me.)

    It is not WoW, but it is rigidly structured like WoW and to me feels similarly impersonal.
    "Conformity is the jailer of freedom and the enemy of growth." - JFK

    "If we don't believe in freedom of expression for people we despise, we don't believe in it at all."
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    I've played and loved Warcraft since before it was a "World" (RTS days). Although lately I've been a little bored (hopefully Lich King will respark some interest), I've never been bored with D&D. I know a lot of people get sick of it...or turned off of it...but never me thankfully. Is 4th Edition like WoW? The only thing that even half way close reminds me of it was that Wizards put some thought into "character builds" for each class to help the player make better choices based on what they'd like to play. It actually helped some people in my past group. The other thing I'd say was inspired by WoW was an aggro mechanic used by paladins and fighters. (Although I've always held a similar mechanic I used back in the day before even WoW.....did Blizzard send their spies to my game session...hmmm....ANYWAY) I Like WoW for what it does...but that being said...I think Dungeons and Dragons always has done stuff WoW could never hope to do...like make a cinematic experience that is defined by the character the players have made...and a legacy there at that...and a World that the Dungeon Master has made...and as so many DMs here can attest...World of Warcraft doesn't have a shot compared to (props to my fellow Dungeon Masters that have spent all their hard earned time to create living and breathing worlds)

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    4th Edition, for all it's flaws, isn't WoW. I feel it does have a lot of WoW elements, and those aren't necessarily good ones, but it's not WoW.

    I can't say WHAT I think it is on a family oriented forum, but it ain't WoW

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    I've never played WoW. So I would think I'm not qualified to answer this question. But I must say, Maelstrom, "You opened a big can of worms with this one."

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    Mabie the title should read IS 4th MAGIC THE GATHERING. I have heard that argument alot and it usually makes alot more sence.

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    Well, hearsay only, I am not a WoW player.

    It has been WoW players I hear making the comparison the most. I don't have the Knowledge to prove or refute the idea. I am simply reporting from the field.

    "Those WoW players that I know and that also play D&D and have Forry, compare the two as highly similar."

    "I have been told that the combat roles are identical."

    Interestingly this does not excite those self same WoW players. To quote one "Mike" "I don't like WoW in my D&D."

    Reporting form the field. Yes, I do get out of the house.

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    It seems like the purpose of this discussion is threefold:

    (1) to determine how similar it is to WoW
    (2) determine if it is similar to WoW for the sake of increasing its popularity (assuming the answer to #1 is "it is")
    (3) and then (by association (#1) or the relevance of #2) praise or condemn it

    The problem is that the answer to #1 depends on what points of comparison a person uses, and furthermore, what type of D&D game they like to play with the 4e rules.

    The answer #2 is purely speculation unless WotC employees post on this board. If you were a WotC business executive, would you come to the conclusion that:
    - The market segment for WoW and the market segment for 4e D&D overlaps
    - This overlap can be exploited by changing the game to suit the tastes of the union of the market segments in a way that doesn't lose the majority of the strictly D&D segment.
    Or other business reasons along the lines of #2?

    And then (for #3), if #2 = "yes", does that ruin the game? If the game is worse for it (and that itself is up for debate), I would hazard a guess that some people judge a game for what it is and not the marketing reasons behind it, and that others are left with a bad taste in their mouth because of the method behind the madness.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Engar View Post
    Is it? I doubt most GM's get to really say that. Even my old group of 20yrs had to be sold on something new.
    All I was attempting to imply here is that 10 different GMs can run the same game 10 different ways. I've witnessed this in 3.X too. I was in 3 different campaigns that were all very different games. They all used the same basic rules framework, but each DM put his own "stamp" on it that made it feel unique.

    Quote Originally Posted by Engar View Post
    (If you think I dislike 4e, sheesh. But much of that is time and money. No time to relearn and no desire to pay to do it.)
    I agree. Especially being frugal as I am, I have to decide whether the time and money investment will provide any lasting value.

    Quote Originally Posted by Engar View Post
    I am also starting to be irked by the argument that you can make it into anything you want. I can sculpt a turd and paint it gold. Want a gold medal for your suggestion? Can you roleplay in WoW? Yup. Is it desirable? No. (Please do not argue with me here, if you like it fine, go do it, really, go away. Grown ups are talking. Shoo, you bother me.)
    No arguments from me or gold medals desired on that front. As I've said, I don't play WoW for any kind of "role playing" experience. I play it as a computer strategy game. What I was trying to say was that D&D does seem to come closer to resembling WoW tropes (a double-edged sword at best) which can influence the way it is played. But what D&D (any edition) has that WoW doesn't is that the players have to imagine D&D for themselves, whereas WoW imagines the game for you (via graphics and sound effects, etc.) which is why I feel WoW is not conducive to role playing.

    Quote Originally Posted by Engar View Post
    It is not WoW, but it is rigidly structured like WoW and to me feels similarly impersonal.
    I can see and even agree with the argument for that. Like I've said, I'm not "pro" or "anti" 4e at this point. Just curious. I've been surprised (in both good and very bad ways) by RPGs before. I've found that I can never really judge a game until I've played it, as many of them sound really cool on the page, but break down horribly on the table. 4e could be one of those.
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    I would like to make an analogy here...

    I am an artist. As an artist, I went to art school, studied art history, looked at so much art, thought about so much art, read about so much art that it would make a normal person vomit from dizziness. I talked with my peers, teachers, fellow students, professional artists, and studied their art work also. I now work in a museum with some of the best living artists working today (Maya Lin to drop a big name). I would be shooting myself in the foot, cutting off my own head, gouging out my eyes, or whatever self depreciating factor you can come up with if I allowed myself NOT to be influenced by all of the art around me. It can only make me bigger, better, and stronger (like Daft Punk!)!

    So is 4e WoW? No. If it was it would say WoW on the books, and have undead as playable races!

    Has WoTC sold out its customer base to try to attract some of these players into the pen & paper games market? NO. If they are smart, and I think they are, they have allowed 4e to be influenced by WoW on several levels and for several reasons, they would be stupid NOT to do this. One reason (warning, opinions coming up!) is to grow the game and make it more of an enjoyable minis wargame (for me 3.5 is not enjoyable as a wargame). Another reason is to try to draw some of the computer gaming crowd into the fold. This is evidenced by the fact that there is a review in Game Informer of 4e when it was released last month and the reviewer specifically says to put down the controller and give an old school pnp gaming a try, or something to that effect. I'm sure there are more but I don't really care enough to keep going on.


    So no, 4e is not WoW. Do they influence each other, oh heck yes! Is that bad, well, who is to really say and be the final word on that other than yourself.
    "I'm afraid it is you who are mistaken. About a great, many things."

    "It is not the rules that make or break a game, it's the GM and the players."


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