I had mentioned this in my Twitter feed yesterday and the day before, but I really do not know what to think of D&D Next. Like a lot of people, I had high hopes when 4th Edition was released, only to have those hopes slowly dashed over the course of a couple of years as I discovered just how truly complicated it can be to run that game. Not necessarily for the game master, but for the players; when you have 14 different options to choose from, it could sometimes take up to 5 full minutes for one person to make one move. That doesn’t sound like much, but my game groups tend to run between 4 to 6 people, so the delays add up and a lot of people get bored and begin looking at “I can haz cheeseburger” pages on their iPads. It sounds like they have addressed a lot of these problems with the open playtest that just finished a few months ago. I really hope so.
Of course, having now expressed this skepticism, I will admit that I will most likely buy the three main books (Player’s Handbook, Dungeon Master’s Guide, and Monster Manual) for the new edition when it comes out. No real gamer doesn’t have at least two or three games collecting dust on their bookshelf that they thought were a good idea at the time, but no one expressed any interest in them. It’s a thing.