ou've got questions—we've got answers! Here's how it works—each week, our Community Manager will scour all available sources to find whatever questions you're asking. We'll pick three of them for R&D to answer, whether about the making of the game or anything else you care to know about... with some caveats.
There are certain business and legal questions we can't answer (for business and legal reasons). And if you have a specific rules question, we'd rather point you to Customer Service, where representatives are ready and waiting to help guide you through the rules of the game. That said, our goal is provide you with as much information we can—in this and other venues.
How enforced are the gear packages? Is it going to be difficult for a player who likes complexity and choice to understand they can buy their own gear, like with info for money and buying in a different chapter/book?
We don’t want to keep anyone who really wants to do piecemeal equipment shopping from doing so, so the information on starting wealth appears right in the equipment section—alongside the very equipment that wealth will be spent on. If you want to pick your starting equipment by hand, that’s fine. We just want to make sure that more streamlined options are presented to help players speed up character creation.
Does the game still have exotic armor types that people can purchase, and how do characters get these kinds of armor?
We’ve done a lot of work to tweak the flavor of the armors, and we have removed exotic materials and craftsmanship from the base armor table. Things such as dragonscale armor will still appear in the game, but they will likely be best represented as treasure and rewards.
Will we see different versions of the same monster, like a goblin shaman and a goblin warrior?
In some cases, where it’s an important part of the monster’s experience or ecology, there will be multiple varieties of the same base monster described. In other cases, you might see tougher versions of monsters that act as leaders, which helps make creating adventures easier. For a good example of multiple varieties, let’s look at the drow. Given that drow society is strongly divided along gender lines, and that male drow gravitate toward arcane magic while female drow gravitate toward divine magic, you’re likely to see drow mages, priestesses, and warriors, since this division is an important part of drow society. We are also considering presenting younger or older versions of certain monsters so that a monster could appear in different kinds of adventures across multiple levels. We’re less likely to present variants of monsters where there’s not a compelling story or adventure reason to do so. To run with the example provided in the question, there’s not a strong enough need for a goblin warrior to be provided as a separate monster when the base goblin will do, since goblins are typically not known for their great warriors.
How can I submit a question to the D&D Next Q&A?
Instead of a single venue to submit questions, our Community Manager will be selecting questions from our message boards, Twitter feed, and Facebook account. You can also submit questions directly to firstname.lastname@example.org. So, if you'd like to have your question answered in the D&D Next Q&A, just continue to participate in our online community—and we may select yours!
Rodney Thompson began freelancing in the RPG industry in 2001 before graduating from the University of Tennessee. In 2007 he joined the Wizards of the Coast staff as the lead designer and developer for the new Star Wars RPG product line. Rodney is the co-designer of Lords of Waterdeep and is currently a designer for Dungeons & Dragons.