I was completely unplugged during Gen Con and the past week, so I’ve just started reading through all of the news.
It looks like Pathfinder did really well in the ENnies, but I was glad to see both BattleTech and Shadowrun winning awards. The full list of winners is here.
Prediction #1 – D&D Product Line Building on Essentials
The new 2011 products announced seem to support this. In addition to Heroes of Shadow, Monster Vault: Threats to the Nentir Vale is a non-Essentials book that clearly builds on the base provided by Essentials rather than the PHB, DMG, and MM. The product schedule also is lacking anything that appears to be from one of the already existing lines of source books: no Power books, no Draconomicon 3, no DMG 3, etc.
Prediction #2 – 2011’s Setting is the Points of Light World
I’ll give myself a half-correct here. I was expecting an announcement of more Gazetteers beyond the Nentir Vale, but nothing was announced. The second Monster Vault and the Gardmore Abbey super adventure also feature the setting, but I’m not sure that those count as much support. In addition, it looks like the Forgotten Realms is getting a revisit with the Neverwinter Campaign Guide, and Ravenloft will be updated to the fourth edition mechanics as a standalone game like Gamma World.
Predition #3 – More D&DI Applications
I completely missed here, and as far as I can tell the only news was a “nothing to announce yet” response during a Q&A session.
D&D 2011 Product Schedule
The announced products for 2011 were generally disappointing. I can see myself picking up some of the products, but nothing screams “must have”.
Nentir Vale Gazetteer – Eh – Between the DMG, H1-3 adventures, and other products, I already have a lot of info on the Nentir Vale. This would need to contain a lot of new information on the region and adventure hooks in order to get purchased by me.
Fortune Cards – Maybe – These sound like a neat idea, but I’ll need more info before I can decide whether they’re worth picking up.
Deluxe Dungeon Master’s Screen – Nope – I mostly play online, so a DM screen is of limited use.
Heroes of Shadow – Maybe – I like the idea of this book, but whether or not I end up buying it will likely depend on my impression of the Essentials products.
Mordenkainen’s Magical Emporium – Neat – This is really just Adventurer’s Vault 3, and I’ll likely pick it up. It will be interesting to see if this includes support for the PHB3 classes or instead focuses on Essentials and Heroes of Shadow.
Shadowfell: Gloomwrought and Beyond – Neat – I’ve enjoyed the planar books, and the Despair Deck sounds like a fun idea.
Monster Vault: Threats to the Nentir Vale – Eh – The tokens and poster maps don’t interest me, and I’d have preferred to see Monster Manual 4 announced as a hardcover book without them.
Conquest of Nerath – Neat – This is actually the product that I am most interested in. The meshing of dungeon-delving and armies clashing sounds like it could be a fun twist.
Player’s Handbook: Champions of the Heroic Tier – Neat – This sounds like a good idea for a book. The themes in the Dark Sun previews look like an interesting addition to D&D, and I’m always happy to have more character options.
Neverwinter Campaign Guide – Maybe – I’m not currently playing or running a game in the Realms, so whether or not I pick this up depends entirely on how much can be plundered for other settings.
Madness of Gardmore Abbey – Nope – While a packaged Deck of Many Things sounds great, I don’t get much use out of super adventures.
Ravenloft – Maybe – This sounds like it could be interesting, but the released info is pretty minimal.