Article Header Image
Rule-of-Three: 06/12/2012
Rodney Thompson

Y ou've got questions—we've got answers! Here's how it works—each week, our Community Manager will be scouring all available sources to find whatever questions you're asking. We'll pick three of them for R&D to answer, whether about the about the making of the game, the technical workings of our DDI studio, or anything else you care to know about... with some caveats.

There are certain business and legal questions we can't answer (for business and legal reasons). And if you have a specific rules question, we'd rather point you to Customer Service, where representatives are ready and waiting to help guide you through the rules of the game. That said, our goal is provide you with as much information we can—in this and other venues.

1 Any chance we could get a peek at some options that could make the D&D Next version of the fighter class more interesting or complex?

Absolutely! In the coming weeks we'll be addressing the feedback we've gotten on the fighter (as well as other things, but the fighter is one of the first things we'll be tinkering with). We've said from the beginning that we want to include ways to build fighters that stand across a spectrum of complexity, and we presented only the simplest fighter in the pre-gen characters group. Plus, some of the things we'll be doing to give more tactical options to the fighter will also affect other classes, like the rogue and potentially even the cleric.

2 Will attacks of opportunity, area effects, and flanking make a comeback in D&D Next?

The answer is yes to all three, but in different ways. We already have area effects in the game, mostly in the form of spells. We have some ideas about flanking, but those ideas are more likely to show up in a tactical combat module that would sit alongside guidelines for using the grid more effectively. As for attacks of opportunity, a big piece of feedback we're getting from the playtesters is that it's too easy for spellcasters and ranged attackers to get away from melee combatants, so we're discussing some ways to address this problem with a modified version of opportunity attacks. The goal is to keep things streamlined and fast (we're getting a lot of positive feedback right now on the speed of combat, and we want to keep it that way), but we do want to explore something that keeps characters from fleeing melee with no consequences.

3 Does spell failure exist when wearing armor in D&D Next? Will spells stay the same as is or will be material, somatic, and verbal elements added later?

We don't have arcane spell failure in the game right now; instead, in the description of the wizard's spellcasting ability, you'll note that you simply cannot cast spells in armor. As for material, somatic and verbal components to spells, in the Magic section of the How to Play document, we say, "Unless a spell's description says otherwise, a spell requires you to chant mystic words and complete intricate hand motions. Some spells also have material components that are required for casting." So, the default assumption should be that all spells have the traditional somatic and verbal components, and any spells that have material components will say so.

How can I submit a question to the Rule-of-Three?

Instead of a single venue to submit questions, our Community Manager will be selecting questions from our message boards, Twitter feed, and Facebook account. You can also submit questions directly to So, if you'd like to have your question answered in the Rule-of-Three, just continue to participate in our online community—and we may select yours!

Rodney Thompson
Rodney Thompson began freelancing in the RPG industry in 2001 before graduating from the University of Tennessee. In 2007 he joined the Wizards of the Coast staff as the lead designer and developer for the new Star Wars RPG product line. Rodney is the co-designer of Lords of Waterdeep and is currently a designer for Dungeons & Dragons.
Sort Items By: Newest First Oldest First Top Rated
There are no comments yet for this article (or rating). Be the first!

Create Comment
Follow Us
Find a place to get together with friends or gear up for adventure at a store near you
Please enter a city or zip code