if you are a classic nerd like me, hell if you even know me you probably have at one point in your life leafed through a Dungeons and Dragons book. Though most of you reading this have even participated in such an event as a campaign, there are those of you out there who have not been touched by its greatness.
Last week the much anticipated 4th edition of the classic paper and pencil roleplaying game was released with a rousing cheer in the nerd community, and a whisper elsewhere. I started playing the game towards the tail end of 3rd edition with the Spaniard and some other friends from Connecticut days and we got pretty into it. When 3.5 came out it didn't seem like a lot was changing so the transition wasn't too bad. Granted by this point I had moved to North Carolina and our 3.0 campaign was on indefinite hold. Once when I came back up to the CT we played a bit after converting to the new rules. In college I got involved in some pretty lengthy 3.5 campaigns that were tonnes of fun with Nate and that crew and we pulled a bunch of people into the lifestyle with us.
After graduation, getting a job, and moving down here I found I was hurting for some DnD so after a few trips to my local games store I landed myself in a campaign with some kids who work down in the Depot where I do my contract work. These cats showed me how to really do the "game" aspect of 3.5. Twinking out your character, min maxing, all that fun stuff, it was a totally different game experience than with "its the gnome" or "whatever Nate called his campaigns"
Anyway on to 4e. They changed everything. No joke, no exaggeration. Combat system, class system, magic items, character creation, there is very little left from 3.5 that went unchanged. Its going to be a totally different experience for a lot of people, and there will be some that will reject the change. Personally I'd be excited to play either version, since they both have their merits, but I can see where Wizards was going with 4e. They wanted to make it more accessible to the general public in a world dominated by World of Warcraft and I don't really blame them, they are trying to run a business. I just hope they don't completely abandon support for the 3.5 ruleset, since I know some people who will still play it.