So, if you missed it, here’s the story. I skipped the entire D&D 5e playtest so that when the Starter Set was released, I had pretty fresh eyes. Starting from that, I opted to read through the D&D starter set and then the Basic Rules, and share my impressions as I went (mistakes and all). They’re all collected here.
I liked it a lot, enough so that I’m looking forward to running or playing it, and I will absolutely be buying the core books. It was full of clever and elegant bits, and I can’t wait to play with these toys (so much so that if the license is overly restrictive, I will be greatly disappointed). It’s not all perfect, but the good far outweighs the less good.
Compared to previous editions, I would describe this as a “Good Parts” version of 3e – it carries forward a little bit more of the spirit of 2e while incorporating the best practices from 3e and 4e.
I am also delighted that there is no sign that it will require an online component. After the pain brought about by the 4e character creation tool, that was a real fear (at least for me) and it looks like we won’t see a repeat of that. Thank goodness.