Since the big announcement of 5E, or D&DNext, or whatever you prefer to call it, there hasn’t been much concrete info on what the new edition would be like. Mike Mearls revealed a few interesting morsels of data in an interview at Gameinformer. What exactly will it mean to “unify” players of previous editions?
Mearls touches on a lot of the big questions people have heading into new editionland, including the open gaming license. Here, he discusses how they determined the core elements of D&D:
We actually went back and played every major edition of D&D and used those experiences to help narrow down the absolute core elements of the game. If you removed those elements, it’s not D&D. Our list includes the six abilities, classes, levels, hit points, Armor Class, and a few other things. In many ways, the list creates the shared language that links the editions.
He also attempts to dispel the idea that cranking new editions every five years is a big money grab:
We’re actually much better off creating a single, stable edition. It’s easier for fans, it’s better for continuity for writers and designers, and it’s much easier in terms of creating a long-term product strategy. It would be great if the playtest feedback was such that we felt comfortable dropping any reference to editions or numbers in the final game’s title.
It’s quite an interesting interview, so head over to Gameinformer if you want to check out the whole thing.