Tuesday, August 12, 2008


Wizards of the Coast is going to revise the Game System License (GSL) and System Reference Document (SRD) for d20 and 4e. I didn't look too closely when it was first announced, as any need I had for the license was a ways in the future, but I had read that there was a lot of unhappiness from the community regarding it. The one thing I do remember was that the license prevented a company from selling both 3e and 4e versions of the same product. While I'm no publisher, I do create quite a bit of material, and while it's mostly consumed internally, I do occasionally post snippets and might want to do more than that. With this upcoming change, I suppose I should pay a little more attention when it's released so I know what I have to deal with. "We have listened to the community and our valued colleagues and have taken their concerns and recommendations to heart" sounds promising. I hope they're what the community wanted.

This month's Dungeon editorial touched on one of my favorite changes to the 4e encounter system, which is the effect of terrain and environment. The Keep on the Shadowfell has already had some interesting uses of layout and terrain (no spoilers, sorry), and this trend has got me considering the environment for all of the encounters in the module I'm currently designing. While we've mentioned in these pages that some parts of combat have just shifted the repetition from one form to another, the use of terrain gives that extra dimension to any encounter.

Even more updates have been released for the 4e core books. This is the third set of errata. I haven't looked at them yet (I prefer to do it with books in-hand so I can pencil in the changes), but I wonder if they're as sweeping as the last ones. I like the fact that they're working hard to correct and update often, but it does make you wonder if things were a bit rushed to meet the June 6 deadline they had set for themselves.

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