Why aren't you playing D&D?

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Why aren't you playing D&D?

Postby Baz King » 11:27pm on 29 Dec 10

I think all of us have at least dabbled, maybe more than that. I got my start with D&D in the 70s, but didn't play it at all for about 15 years. Having come back to it in recent times, I feel like I missed out on a lot of good gaming.

I know why I left it behind, and I know why I came back, but I want to see what others have to say before I tell my tale.

So what stops you playing the worlds oldest and most popular RPG? Edition doesn't come into it, and casual insults are not necessary. I just want to get a feel for peoples rationales, and to see if there are any myths to be busted.
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Re: Why aren't you playing D&D?

Postby James Mullen » 11:33pm on 29 Dec 10

Hmm, I don't know how to answer this...

I've played D&D many times over the past couple of decades and, quite simply, I've never had a good game of it. I've tried different editions, different settings, different GMs but the same problems keep coming up. Playing a PC in D&D is deeply unsatisfactory for me because they are so disempowered: you get to follow the plot to a point where you can swing an axe/cast a spell at the bad guys and if you screw up, thats just tough. It doesn't tell stories of heroic fiction, or even create engaging drama: PCs are weapon platforms who get a series of targets dragged past them and get rewarded based on how mnay of them they hit. That's just not enough to satisfy me the way being a protagonist in a game like Hot War or Primetime Adventures does.
Last edited by James Mullen on 10:39am on 30 Dec 10, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Why aren't you playing D&D?

Postby Neil Gow » 11:34pm on 29 Dec 10

Baz King wrote:I think all of us have at least dabbled, maybe more than that.


You do realise this sort of statement is an open door for every single internet warrior to point out that THEY have never played, seen, heard of, experienced or had any interaction with, or with anyone who has used, Dungeons and Dragons?

So what stops you playing the worlds oldest and most popular RPG?


Because we just finished playing it for about two years. We're allowed time off for good behaviour. Of course, now we are playing Gamma World, so the fun hasn't really stopped!

Good luck with the mythbusting. I feel there are some entrenched ideas here that are not for turning... :lol:

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Re: Why aren't you playing D&D?

Postby Baz King » 11:48pm on 29 Dec 10

James Mullen wrote:Hmm, I don't know how to answer this...


You haven't exactly done a bad job though! Would it be fair to say you prefer conflict resolution to task resolution? Might that be the reason?
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Re: Why aren't you playing D&D?

Postby Baz King » 11:50pm on 29 Dec 10

Neil Gow wrote:
Baz King wrote:I think all of us have at least dabbled, maybe more than that.


You do realise this sort of statement is an open door for every single internet warrior to point out that THEY have never played, seen, heard of, experienced or had any interaction with, or with anyone who has used, Dungeons and Dragons?


Yeah, I know. Have you ever typed up a new thread, then editted it because you're trying to second guess the replies, then gone back to the original? That was me.

Better to post and be damned!
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Re: Why aren't you playing D&D?

Postby MartinBailey » 12:14am on 30 Dec 10

D&D was the game that started it for most of my group and I have to say - it's the game we go back to over and over again. Yes we have dabbled with Deadlands, Seventh Sea, Orpheus, Gangbusters, WFRP, Dark Heresy etc but we always, always go back to D&D. Why do we do it? We love the breaks and enjoy getting to know the new rules andwe even see the merits of different systems but we still go back to old faithful.

Maybe it's a bit like going to the pub - we always go back to the local. It's probably more to do with the fact that there is a ton of support material so it's the easiest. I like Beer, I like Wine, I even like Champagne, but the thing I drink most of is tea.

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Re: Why aren't you playing D&D?

Postby Evilgaz » 12:36am on 30 Dec 10

Older editions I plain don't like any more. I liked them back then (when I was younger), but nowadays they're just not what I want. I'm not a massive fan of generic fantasy and if anything the new Hellfrost from TAG is way too generic fantasy for me, I was hoping for something more hardcore Nordic or otherwise different - D&D tends to be (in my head) generic fantasy and that's not really my bag. I know there's all kinds of worlds out there for it, but ultimately I look at the PHB or DMG and I'm just put off. I remember what the games were like and I don't particularly want to do that again. There's lots of games out there and I can pick one to do what I want better.

Newer edition is too much like a wargame for me - I'd rather play Warmachine or a boardgame or something for that end of the gaming spectrum. Its (as written) too involved with the minutiae of powers and ultimately, just the look of it puts me right off. It reminds me (rightly or wrongly) of cheesy mainstream teenage fantasy and its not my bag.

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Re: Why aren't you playing D&D?

Postby queenortart » 12:54am on 30 Dec 10

I started with D & D in the mid 70s, and stopped playing as soon as I discovered that there was anything else to play. Chiefly it's because - sweeping generalisation coming up - the women get treated like crap. Look at Tolkein. And because it seemed to always be a munchkin hunt.

I loathe fantasy and would much rather play historical or modern day stuff
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Re: Why aren't you playing D&D?

Postby w00hoo » 12:54am on 30 Dec 10

I started with D&D/AD&D in the early 80's and I stopped because I found other games, RQII primarily. I did a lot of my immature gaming with D&D and as I learnt how to 'play better' it was easier to blame D&D for various power gaming mishaps than it was to admit that I just didn't really know what I was doing and was too ignorant to learn properly.

Since then I have played D&D on and off but it's never really grabbed me, then again I don't particularly do fantasy at the best of times. I had no problem shelling out for some 3.5 books when I wanted to run Midnight, and when we started a new group where almost nobody knew each other we fairly naturally chose 4th Ed (which was new out) as the system to start with. I haven't had great experiences with that, although it could be GM related rather than system, I've not played with many different 4th Ed GM's, but that doesn't mean I wouldn't play it again. In general there's just plenty of other stuff out there that I want to play more. If I really wanted some fantasy, then I might consider it again. then again I'd probably go for Barbarians of Lemuria, In a Wicked Age or Jaws of the 6 Serpentsbefore it, just because they are more my cup of tea. (Or original RQII/Rolemaster/HQ because that's what the people around me would prefer to play)
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Re: Why aren't you playing D&D?

Postby Avatar » 8:46am on 30 Dec 10

i. Played it to death in my teens.
ii. Not a big fan of Traditional Fantasy, especially Dungeon crawls.
iii. Later editions too much like a Wargame with grid based combat.
iv. Rules slanted so certain races will gravitate towards the same profession.
v. Cookie cutter Clerics with the same spell options no matter who they worship.
vi. While it may be a good starter for newbies IMO there are simply better games out there for the experienced gamer.
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Re: Why aren't you playing D&D?

Postby andrewmorton1968 » 9:06am on 30 Dec 10

Well lets see... the first time I played was a game you run Mr King. I had a human Fighter who was killed by fire beetles - I was what... 12 years old at the time - and hooked from the first game.

Playing D&D was like loosing your gaming virginity in those days. Once you'd lost it you realised there were all these other games you could dally with - and some of them were actually better at it and more fun.

In all the years I've played, the longest break I had from D&D was about 8 years from 1994-2001. I started playing and running games again when 3rd ed came out.

What did I play over those eight years - RunQuest, MERP (quite a bit), Ring World, Traveller(lots), Tunnels & Trolls (quite an indy game by modern standards), GURPS (blurg!) and my personal favourite Call of Cthulhu (more times than I can remember).

I'm becoming a fan of much more rules light systems these days - games where roleplaying is more about being your character than your character being a complex set of stats and feats. That's the main reason I don't like 4th ed D&D.
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Re: Why aren't you playing D&D?

Postby Halfbat » 9:31am on 30 Dec 10

Ok. Started with D&D in the early-mid-70s (something like that), whizzed onto AD&D, then found it somewhat too constraining on character when RQ and Traveller came out. RQ in all its variants (->BRP) was just too flexible and allowed players to adapt their character to a shape they wanted rather than be constrained, so it just became the framework on which loads of different variants were produced.

Whilst I was atracted to its RQ-like skill system, the only reason for trying 3.5 was to get games - I didn't really like it's over-complexity and supposed-balance-but-wasn't. 4th was an improvement in terms of balance (initially, at least) and gave some really nice games but I found you were/are playing D&D - whilst more in-depth RPing can be done and the skill challenge can reward it when done well, in practice I find you need a really good DM to make it work well outside its core dungeon/encounter-based strengths (in which it excels, ime).

For me, the question is probably "Why are you playing D&D?": Because their are a bunch of gamers at the local club who just want to focus on D&D-ness. I enjoy it from time-to-time as a game-shape in its own right, but much prefer more flexible (but generally trad) games - D&H, Hyperlite, OQ/RQII. THese also tend to be more specific rather than generic.

So the answer is probably lack of flexibility.
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Re: Why aren't you playing D&D?

Postby ncmreynolds » 10:03am on 30 Dec 10

The people I play with (mostly Phoenix Games Club) just don't seem to play it that much. I've played 4th ed. a couple of times and it was OK but I wouldn't attempt to run it myself.
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Re: Why aren't you playing D&D?

Postby Clanger1968 » 10:41am on 30 Dec 10

The people I game with have played all incarnations of D&D over 25 years + of gaming. To us the system does not matter much, I think people get too anal about systems. What more important is the fun you have with the people you game with.

D&D does have its charm when we want to go back to the days of the old fashioned Dungeon Bash. There is nothing wrong with that, in fact it can be refreshing to get away from all the high concept bollocks which a lot of modern games shove down your throat.
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Re: Why aren't you playing D&D?

Postby James Mullen » 10:46am on 30 Dec 10

Baz King wrote:Would it be fair to say you prefer conflict resolution to task resolution? Might that be the reason?

It would be fair but it wouldn't exactly be the whole picture; I've played Savage Worlds many times and have run games using it, both as one offs and mini-campaigns. I was also a Deadlands GM every week for around 6 years and was even running it 2 nights a week at one point. I'd have to agree with some of the other comments made here, that D&D is very generic fantasy, so doesn't excite as much as a specific, original setting.

System-wise (and I know I'm going to make enemies here, but what the heck) I can't see why anyone stills plays D&D when SW is on the shelves; it's like discovering there are a bunch of people who insist on using the horse & cart when cars have been invented. Yes, D&D players are like the Amish. :D
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