Thursday, October 28, 2010

D&D Essentials Explained

I was wandering through YouTube during lunch today and came across this set of videos from Wizards of the Coast. Paul Bazakas, National Account Director and Mike Mearls, Group Manager of D&D R&D explain not only the content but also the reasoning behind the Essentials line and how it fits together with the fourth edition of Dungeons and Dragons. I'll reserve my comments until the end of the 3rd video...

Wow. Well, I must say, all of my worries and misconceptions are gone. The Essentials line is an addition to fourth edition D&D just as if a new Players Handbook or Monster Manual was released. It is not to replace anything! This is great news! I'm willing to embrace expansions on the current system (especially at the lower price point) easier than if Essentials really was a different version of 4E. Thank you Mike and Paul for filming this and putting me at ease.

Personally, I'm not interested in the tokens (I have over 350 miniatures) but I can see how new players would not have the same kind of existing resources I have collected over time.


  1. Its true, D&D Essentials is a really great release, since it really helps new players to join the game without needing any expert help or something, with really great maps, 3 adventures and tons of tokens, you can defend yourself for at least a year!
    I personally already own the Rules Compendium and its a really useful book, everything is on it like Mike have said. Now I wanna buy the Monster Vault for the tokens and all the monsters indexed there.
    Thanks for posting the 3 videos, I haven't saw them before and was awesome to understand why they do something like that.
    But I have a question, since they release all this material, the other books (PHB 1 2 3, DMG 1 2 and MM 1 2 3) will be taken away from the stores or they will keep making them?

  2. My understanding from the videos is that the Essentials line does not replace any of the 4E manuals, but expands upon them. As Mike said, eventhough 1/4 of the monsters are rehashed from the other books, 3/4 are brand new. That means there are hudreds of monsters from MM1, 2 and 3 that aren't represented in the Monster Vault. Along those same lines, the PHB 1, 2, and 3 are not being replaced, just added to with these new builds. Yes, there is some duplicated material here about the basics of how to play the game, but all the options available in the other manuals are not present.

    Taking all of that into consideration, I do not expect them to start pulling the 4E manuals off the shelves.

  3. I hope so, cause that would be sad.
    Thanks for the clarification, I just understood when he said that the INFO would not be replaced, but not the books. ^^