It's good at generating this post on a regular basis.


The real answer. Also good at generating the "what is better at 5e than 5e?" and other variants. It's a conversation starter that people also run.


Have you played D&D 5e and enjoyed it? If so, it wasn't a waste of money.


I'd extend that to have you *read* D&D 5e and enjoyed it.


D&D 5e is good at being *Dungeons and Dragons*. That may sound like a joke - and it is a little - but it's meant sincerely. When it was released, some described 5e as "everyone's second-favorite version of D&D." People who had played other editions (or every edition) of D&D recognized that 5e presented a good compromise and refinement of the game. D&D occupies a unique place in TTRPGs. It presents a specific take on fantasy adventure gaming while also being the foundation of all TTRPGs. More than any other TTRPG, it is its own unique thing, almost a genre of TTRPG in itself. Since it represents a sort of genre in itself, all it has to do is be good at being itself. 5e is, generally, good at being itself. It's everyone's second-favorite version of D&D.


Well said. D&D 5th edition is an 80% solution or rather “good enough” to do lots of things. If you want to play heroic fantasy then it’s even better than that.


Second-favourite (at least)*


Eh. I'd take 5e over 3.Xe, but I'd take every other edition over 5e




Honest, tho


It's a fair comment. I'd agree. However, I would also take "3.5e but modded to only allow tier 3 and 4 classes" over 5e. I would also consider "3.5e but go absolutely nuts, use it all, everyone is tier 1" as a fun gonzo experience. That's easier to do in Pathfinder 1e though since all their classes are online.


What's your opinion on "E6"?


On a personal level I'm not actually really into low-level play. I'm really starving for more well-designed games that assume a higher power level but manage to keep it balanced. There's hundreds of games about being low level orc-stabbers but very little to let you play out something like a Final Fantasy campaign. Sure, I can name a few, but I'd love to have more options of high quality.


Sewer rat tastes like pumpkin pie may be a fair comment but I'd never know, because I'd never eat the filthy motherfucker. 3rd ed raised D&D from the soulless combat simulator of 2nd ed. 4th ed was a train wreck that had to have elements of 3rd ed introduced back to it to make it recognizable as d&d, in 5th. I mean whos actually playing 5th ed without 3rd eds feats? Nobody!


This is the weirdest take on different DnD editions I think I've ever seen. I don't even have a strong opinion on 2nd ed and I've never seen it called a 'soulless combat simulator' before.


I agree it's an odd take. 2e had some of the most unique and fun settings in D&D/AD&D - The Planescape material was REALLY good and fun to run. Soulless Combat Sim? I mean, if you ran it that way. Yes, combat could be a huge part of the game, not the only part.


"Everyone's second favourite" likely fits the majority, although personally my top two are AD&D 2e and BECMI. 5e - while it has *some* OSR DNA - is predominantly a 3.x / 4e compromise. If either of those are your favourite edition, then yeah: 5e is probably your second.


I basically never play D&D any more, and am only looking at running again because I was asked by the owner of a shop... But that said, whoever wrote that is a tool. Ignore them completely and have fun - start in a tavern, beat up orcs and save dragons from fire-breathing princesses. If you're having fun, you aren't "doing it wrong".


That guy in the link was almost certainly talking about D&D 3.5 (or 3.0). "Quadratic Wizards: Spell casters are significantly better than fighters or rogues almost immediately. By level 5+, they pretty much run the game. Spell casters get an entire chapter of the book dedicated to fun tricks and gimmicks they can use, while the entire Fighter class is a single page." "Item Treadmill: The math requires you to have magic items of a certain strength by a certain level to still be effective, with no indication in the books of when you should have these things or which things you should have." Etc.


Tbh it could be both editions. Maybe martial classes are hanging in better on a mechanical side but they are still Kind of boring in comparison


The Fighter is, as in most editions, there for players who just want to hit stuff over and over. But the class is now six pages, and can remain effective without magic items, so: progress!


One of my favourite characters ever was a 2nd ed fighter. He had the beast rider kit and rode around on a sabre-toothed tiger, so that helped. But he was awesome. Very good at hitting things over and over.


Is it really progress if it's a regression from the last edition?


The 4e Fighter was... different. It had rules like this: "When a Marked enemy is adjacent to the fighter who Marked it, and Shifts or makes an Attack that does not include the fighter who Marked it as a target, the fighter who Marked it can make a Melee Basic Attack against it as an Immediate Interrupt Action. (This is not an Opportunity Attack.)" If we choose to think of the classic D&D Fighter as a character for people who don't want to have to learn more than an absolute minimum number of rules, and would rather just roll to hit every round, then the 4e Fighter failed to be a *true* D&D Fighter at all. 5e is the Compromise Edition, so it regressed part way.


I don't see "all classes are equally complex" as a downside. I should be allowed to be a player who loves crunch and play an interesting fighter.


Yeah, the 4e Fighter is an unusually complex take on the class. The closest 4e has to a "I just wanna hit stuff" class is the Ranger of all things.


There's the Essentials fighter.


Oh yeah, good point. Though anecdotally I've heard there were players who thought even the E-Fighter's Stance system was too complicated, so who knows 🤷‍♂️


I think that's unlikely, given the Critical Role mention at the very top.


I agree with u/Barrucadu . Entertainment is always it's own value. If you got some fun out of dnd 5e and that amount of fun was worth the ticket price then you didn't waste your money. ​ That being said, 5e doesn't do anything better then some other game. And recommendations for better actual games will depend on what you and your group are looking for.


D&D 5e is good at getting non-TTRPG players to try out a TTRPG, since it’ll be the one familiar brand they’ve heard of. It’s also fairly easy to learn for new players, and for them to make characters. And because it’s so well known, it’s the easiest game to find groups to join. It also has great support online from communities and content, since it’s so popular. There’s an endless amount of streaming content to learn the game from and be inspired too. Overall that makes it a very good intro to the hobby. Other than that, from a design perspective I believe it’s fairly sub-par, with very traditional gaming DNA that has been superseded by much better designed modern games. From a lore-perspective is surprisingly messy and unfocussed, I can only think this is the case because it’s trying to be so mainstream to please too many people too much of the time. But worst of all I found GMing it painful, due to it’s *‘just make it up as you go’* philosophy that puts a huge load on the GM in the moment to come up with rules and rulings. But a list of all the things that other games do better would be a 10,000+ word post.. and you can find all that info all over reddit already.


5e is good at doing D&D, which is really a genre in its own right marked by lots of combat with exotic monsters, quite fast escalation in PC fighting prowess and rules to ensure that monstrous challenges stay in line with that. So if you want to run a game mostly about going into Dungeons and killing Dragons. D&D is fun are really well suited to doing that. If you want to run something in a Fantasy Renaissance Italy centred on court intrigue and conspiracy ... D&D is not a good choice.


5e is a good game to *play* for running in dungeons and encountering dragons, but it is lacking in support for the person *running* that game.


I am not convinced. 5e is good at doing 5e which is a very different flavor of D&D than 0e or 1e. Back in the old days we made fun of "funhouse dungeons" or "dungeon zoos". Today it's the civilized part of a setting that comes across as zoo. But not in the distinct way that frex Talislanta presented. It's a bland, featureless kitchen sink. A comparison of artwork of 1e and BX to 3e + shows very different locations and situations. A Harryhausen movie feels very different from the Warcraft movie or GoT. Modern D&D is as far removed from Harryhausen's Sinbad, The Golden Blade, Camelot as Harry Potter. Or, to use a different analogy, the written LotR is the true Middle-earth. Jackson's movies are an interpretation, and a valid one that is rightfully popular. 5e is rightfully popular but if I want "D&D" I go back to the source or a very close clone (LL, OSE, S&W). Mind you, I am not claiming one is "objectively" better than the other. If I'd want to play Cyberpunk I'd choose CP 2020 and not CyberGeneration or Shadowrun.


I like nothing about DnD 5e. I think it's poorly designed from the ground up. I agree with the sentiment that your fun times were fun despite the system... ... Which is not to say your fun times are wrong or invalid. It got you into a hobby you like, it's not wasted time or money. What were the first books or novels you read as a kid? Looking back on them today, would you say they're great litterature? Do they compare to what you're reading now? If not, would you say the time and money spent on them was wasted? Of course not! It was an entry point, it got you where you are today. Maybe it wasn't the best entry point and you wouldn't go back to it, but it helped you grow as a reader and has value at least for that.H


This post reminded me of my first TTRPG. A system called "3D&T", designed by Brazilian creators. It stood for "Defenders of Tokyo 3rd edition" even though it was the first edition of the game haha. It was very simplified, d6-based, aiming to be flexible enough to allow people to mimic manga/animes. The same group (or something associated with them) also ran a magazine that would publish some supplements. Their main medieval setting was also a blast, Tormenta. I had so much fun reading their content and playing their games. It was accessible enough that my friends and I figured out how to play on our own and just got it rolling without any senior, more experienced player. I will never forget the pokemon campaign I used to DM with 3D&T. That system was so very flawed from a game design perspective, but I still love it deeply.


Do you want to tell us more about 3D&T? Maybe in a new thread? I'd like to hear more of your experiences and how a "flawed" game worked so well for you. I am sure it is a group thing (personal chemistry, friendship, first RPG, that time of life) but I am interested in how the system assisted or hindered you. Didn't you see the flaws and learned of them only in hindsight, through reviews and online discussion? Were you able to ignore them, handvaive them away, or houserule them? All I know about 3D&T is that it has a "god stat" problem but there are other systems as well with that flaw, and they are played and loved anyway.


Took me a day, but I made a post about it: [https://www.reddit.com/r/rpg/comments/ugsqwx/thoughts\_on\_a\_classic\_brazilian\_ttrpg\_3dt/](https://www.reddit.com/r/rpg/comments/ugsqwx/thoughts_on_a_classic_brazilian_ttrpg_3dt/) It has been a lifetime since I last played 3D&T, so I had to dig through the cobwebs in my memory to write that post... keep in mind it might not be the most accurate. Also, I actually just learned that there were a 1st edition and "2nd" edition (advanced d&t), I had no idea! Thanks for prompting me to do it, it was a very nostalgic exercise.


Nah, it's not a waste of money to discover you don't like something. Just try something else, and have more fun.


It, however, a bummer to waste money to find out that a system isn't your jam. Especially one that tends to run as expensive as 5e. But experience is often worth that.


5e has a decent variety of mostly well-balanced character options, a streamlined system compared to the previous two D&D editions, and is generally good at doing the stuff you expect D&D to do. if you want to run a bunch of friends through a dungeon, it works well. i have a thousand complaints about 5e, but when i'm playing it with the right group, i have a good time - one that i don't think can be completely reproduced by 'better' systems. i like OSR systems a lot, but most of em are too lethal with too few character options for a long campaign. i like 13th age and pathfinder 2e, but it's not like i don't have my gripes with those either, and if i bothered to really think about it i could probably come up with stuff i think 5e does better. 5e is An Edition Of Dungeons And Dragons and that's essentially all it needs to be. it plays more smoothly at the table than 4e, is better balanced than 3e, and has more character customization than 1e and 2e. it feels like a decent middle ground between all of them.


Selling books


Just some hater... With a google doc. I can make you a gdoc that says D&D is awesome and fun if you want? Like honestly, I get suggesting people find the game for them, but no need to call D&D "a trash pile of a game".


Any article which explains its main thesis with the argument that "X is GARBAGE!" is probably not worth your time. D&D 5e is good at rags-to-riches, save the town, save the kingdom, kill-the-monsters-and-take-their-stuff heroic Western fantasy. It's the easiest edition to get into (by far); it's adaptable to all manner of fantasy settings; it comes with a halfway decent default setting; it's got classic and off-the-wall character options; it's got a ton of quirky monsters and lore that you will only find in D&D; it's got enough complexity to keep you busy for a long while mastering it; it's got a massive community (at least here in the US) and organized play. I think the criticism that sticks the best is the expense. D&D books command top dollar in part because of its prominence, and you will frequently be pressured into picking up an extra book or two so you can keep up with the Joneses. That being said, if you're really hard-up for dough and want to kick the tires, [the basic rules](https://dnd.wizards.com/what-is-dnd/basic-rules) – a minimal subset of D&D's rules – are totally free. You can even dodge the price of dice in various ways if you're that cheap. 😉 If the basic rules are too limiting, as a player you can probably get away with buying just one book – the Player's Handbook – and it, of all the books, is priced to move (shop around). Be aware of the price trap that, if you want to use these books with D&D Beyond's digital tooling, you'll need to buy digital versions of these books/assets _on_ D&D Beyond – even if you already own the book! I have played few of the alternatives on this document's list but they do seem on balance like solid recommendations that are repeated frequently on /r/rpg . Search in the sub if you want more of a sense of them. Finally, if you decide you want “D&D, but better,” that’s sort of where /r/Pathfinder2e hangs its cap. 😉 Hope that helps!


Do you take all your opinions from random internet blogs? Our group is DMed by a TTRPG veteran, all our players also DM and we went on a several month quest to try more of the other current TTRPG systems out there. We still think 5e is better for us than the others, which either lacked complexity, had too much complexity for a secondary game, or were too rigid. We like that we can easily tweak 5e: people can argue till they turn blue this 'isn't playing 5e' but if 95% of the systems are 5e, as far as I'm concerned that's the system we're using. It's got complexity and variety while being accessible, it's got the most resources (dear god not having resources when trying other systems was actually agony). It is an excellent neutral, non-intrusive place to start that caters to a little bit of everything. If you like hyper specific systems, extremely crunchy combat, large scale warfare, rigid rulesets or very simple rulesets etc then 5e probably isn't the system for you. But it's a very good jack of all trades system.


Take your opinions from reddit, instead!!


If you have fun with it it’s great. If you don’t it’s not. However it’s specialty is zero to hero epic fantasy with huge power gains. D&D is not particularly good at horror or pathetic aesthetic as the power creep really negates the loss of agency that horror needs to function, and completely disrupts the “we’re absolute nobodies” that pathetic aesthetic requires. It also doesn’t work super well for dungeon crawls in my personal experience, surprisingly. As there are too many *skills* that bog down the ambient dark nature of a crawl that you might want, as opposed to other more lite games. However, looking for epic hero fantasy that ends with you killing a god? 5e is decent at that.


This is not the right sub to ask for good things about D&D 5e, everyone here will only have at best backhanded things to say about it. I suggest going to r/dndnext, or just decide for yourself if you like the game without internet strangers telling you to play something else.


Yeah the degree of hate for 5e is almost comical here. Which is funny to me - when I’m in r/dndnext I feel like that annoying hipster, when I’m here I’m all of a sudden a stan for a system I’ve actively been trying to move away from.


We must be reading different threads. Maybe, to demonstrate your point, you could find the most hateful comment in this thread with more than 5 upvotes? Because what I mostly see is fair criticism and people defending D&D.


Mm, I guess hate isn't the right word. I think the thread has balanced out a bit since I saw it this morning, but in general you get a pretty strong contingent in these threads arguing 5e does \*nothing\* well, or at least nothing better than its competitors. I generally agree with the critiques they go on to make, and as I say personally don't enjoy 5e that much and play other games - but that strikes me as a bit silly. I guess I wouldn't call it hate so much as ... I guess disdain? It's a hipstery sort of stance, it's not so passionate as hate implies.


I’m getting downvoted to zero for a very gentle request for proof. I think this sub is more than fair to D&D. I agree there’s some disdain, but it’s warranted for a product that continues to rest on its design laurels, imho.


Idk if I'd say it rests on its laurels, esp. because so many of my complaints about it boil down to "they're changing too much" :P But, being a sort of industry flagship, it's never going to be \*radical\* in design, it's fair to say. It's the marvel of TTRPGs. You don't go to it for innovation. I mean that somewhat disdainfully! But it unquestionably does some things well, which is why it's the industry standard. I'm just saying it's a bit off to dismiss it entirely. Re: downvotes I would generally ignore them, I get downvoted for no reason all the time. The crowd is dumb.


> Re: downvotes I would generally ignore them, I get downvoted for no reason all the time. The crowd is dumb. Sure, I generally do too, but they kinda go towards proving my point, no? This sub is generally pro-D&D, for a lot of the reasons you cited, many of which I disagree with. But it is pro-D&D.


I guess agree to disagree 🤷


hahah [that is not my experience of dndnext at all](https://www.reddit.com/r/dndnext/comments/tu53zr/what_does_5e_really_succeed_at_raw_in/)... to summarize the best traits of 5e here is some of what I was told over there: * it's less complex than 3.5 * Its successfully easy * an argument over whether bounded accuracy was the best or worst feature of the system * 5e is the most D&D version of D&D for those who want a game that looks and feels like D&D. * it's good at Attracting new players * 5e really really succeeds at getting the average player to buy more books. You have player options merged into DM guide material, you have player options merged into MM material, you have player options merged into adventure books, you have rule additions merged into adventure books. * It's a simpler, less lore based, more GM fiat 3e. some of it was more enthused, but... all the same criticisms.


That comment about 5e being the most d&d version is hilariously wrong.


I wish this sub actually enjoyed other RPGs as much as it hates D&D.


I wish there were a few subs where people could go to talk specifically about D&D and not clutter up this one asking about it...


It's good at zeroes to fantasy superheroes by killing stuff in tactical combat. That's what it was made for, and it largely succeeds at that goal. It's also good at being a gateway for people into the wider rpg community, because DnD is almost a household name even where it isn't played


So someone has an opinion about a game. Hold the presses, this never happened before. Quite frankly, you shouldn't give 2 shits about someone else telling you whether you should enjoy a game or not. I've played in more RPGs systems than the average person reading here probably even knows. Some good, some bad, some average, some with incredible detail and some that basically go "yeah, there's stats, but we don't really make a lot of use of them". What it really comes down to is not the system. It's the people you play with. And that is an eternal truth.


im very very pro-encouraging people to try different systems and there are many i like better, but for accessible high magic fantasy superhero adventures with a tendency for absurdity but still a little grounding in fairly comprehensive rules, with lots of content and a much higher chance that your new players will be initially excited, 5e is great. is it's ubiquitousness by design? totally. WotC set it up for success brilliantly, the Open Gaming License being a big part of that effort. the d20 is seen as the rpg standard by many abd 5e as the flagship. That's OK tho, because if people love the hobby or love the concept but not the genre they usually find their way to another system if they don't have a friend telling them they can run a 5e game about detectives in 1950s chicago. it's not good at that! it's good at giving fun and manageable (particularly through tools) video gamey combat and just enough role play structure and an adequate skill system. also i just know the system by heart at this point so running it is always really smooth.


It's only a bad game if you do not enjoy it.


Marketing and artwork


DND 5e is the jack of all trades master of none. You can run any type of game and even if it runs poorly it will run. For example if you want to play a game where all players are vampires trying to maintain the masquerade you can do it in 5e. There is a better system for it but it doesn't really work to use VTM for a dungeon crawl. The second thing DND 5e has is that it is resilient as fuck. You can Frankenstein pretty much anything you want or need and probably won't break the game. Which is one of the major factors that makes it the perfect tutorial rpg. The other major factor is that it's really difficult to royally screw up if you are following their advice for characters or encounters.


The advantage/disadvantage mechanic is nice and other systems have copied that one. So while it's true that maybe other games did it first, DnD5e was definitely the game that popularised it. Otherwise, to answer your statement of: >Please tell me what you love about 5e that other systems don't have! In a literal sense, that is literally it. Everything else it has, something else probably did better, depending on what your specific focus is.


Inspiration is also a good meta currency - One that could probably be done better, but the core of it is solid - simple, can be used for one thing rather than adding a table of options for players to have to refer to, and plays into the advantage/disadvantage system nicely.


D&D has a ton of recognizable fantasy tropes — colored dragons! Beholders! Mind Flayers! Vecna! Mimics! And an OK framework to mash them all together in a sometimes-interesting stew. Those tropes are supported by great art, and the collective imaginations of millions of people who have played with them. Fortunately, you don’t have to buy any D&D material to use these tropes, but you can if you want to.


Selling books


Good at making non-casters feel obsolete after level 5. Good at bloating the choices with extra books. Good about shifting the entry costs away from a lot of people. Good at parting people from lots of money. I want a one-and-done game, the thing arrives and I have all that I need in one place, I don't want all of the extras and add-ons, I'm capable of coming up with my own stuff.


Try "Forbidden lands" published by free leauge. 🙂👍


Very much my sort of thing, thank you.


If you have fun playing 5E, that's all that matters. And I say this as a person who did not have fun playing 5E. You certainly won't have as much trouble finding a game out there as someone who prefers more obscure systems. Everyone is different, everyone is entitled to their opinions. "Game X Sucks!/Rules!" is just that. I've got plenty of design gripes and other objective criticism of 5E, but that doesn't mean someone else is going to view those things in the same light I do. Likewise, plenty of people my whole adult life have ragged on GURPS, but I always had a blast playing it. YMMV


5e is accessible. It's easily recognized, it's easy to walk people through, and there are a lot of reasons why D&D is most peoples first TTRPG. It has it's issues, and as you play you will likely begin looking for other systems that do things differently, but it's extrememly unlikely that you would start with most of them.


I think u/LaFlibuste says it best, so what I say will sound very similar, but… I kinda see 5e in a similar way to something like Brandon Sanderson. In the end, not really all that good, unless you’re looking for one specific thing. And there’s no shame in that: if you want that thing, it’s perfect for you. Likewise, there’s value in them as gateway products. If they hook people who then move on to better stuff, they still have merit overall. The main reasons they tend to get such negative reps in their respective circles is because: A) They have such a strong marketing presence that it actually negatively impacts the sales and purchase of other products, many of them better. B) They get praised for shit that they don’t actually do all that well, or even for stuff that is an active *problem* in the work. C) As a result of A and B, choices that are very particular to them are treated like overall norms or guidelines to follow. I’m happy to elaborate on any of those.


People. It has a critical mass of DMs and players.


It’s amazing at marketing, reaching a lot of people who would otherwise not have known about the existence of TTRPGs at all. The books have also become sort of a gold standard for print layout in the TTRPG creators’ community.


Well unless you have player that have never played any rpg before, then they have played D&D. There is a lot of, and I mean A LOT of content for it online.


The popular game will generate hate, just for being the popular game. D&D is a good system (there are plenty of other good systems, mind), and it owns a huge percentage of the market... And thus, is hated by some for no other reason. The Internet just lets us hear from those who dislike it loudly and near constantly. You can see this phenomenon in video games too. Hate directed at everything from Fortnite to Among Us, just because SO many people play them. Your money wasn't wasted, but consider other systems too. For a completely different fantasy take, I like Earthdawn. For a swashbuckler game, I like 7th Sea. For gonzo gaming, I like Dungeon Crawl Classics, or the ancient HackMaster 4e if you can find it. But D&D 5e balances well (too well for my tastes, but perfect for many), and Advantage/Disadvantage is a nice mechanic.


5e is a good system and many people wouldn't know about or play TTRPGs without it. D&D has been the tentpole of the industry for decades, which also makes it frequent target for criticism. 5e has a lot of great resources to choose from and is constantly modifying its material. It's core philosophy of "take the rules you like, and leave the ones you don't" (DMG) allows you to personalize and adapt a session mid-game. PCs get a lot of choice in how they want to play, and the extent of creativity is up to the group.


I will agree with another comment that D&D is functionally it's own genre, instead of being a generic fantasy game - it is fundamentally for telling stories of adventurers going out, overcoming challenges, and getting stuff to take on bigger challenges. D&D5e does that genre pretty well. It doesn't *mechanically* add to that flavor - AD&D and earlier typically add pulp, 3.X adds swords and sorcery and a dash of swashbuckling, 4e drops superheroes into the pot - which can leave some wanting more, but the basic recipe is palatable across a broad spectrum of tastes. However: "When you're playing you're having fun despite of the system, not because of it." As long as you're having fun, right? Look, there's a lot that can be said about D&D from a critical and design perspective, and we've said a bit of it ourselves through the lens of trying to encourage people to try more games. I'd love for everyone to try more games! But if you're actually enjoying reading/playing it yourself it's money well spent. That's The Point, after all.


5e isn't good at anything, it's okay at most things. So if you have a varied group and need a general crowd pleaser, it's an okay choice.


Tbh, I honestly believe that fifth edition is good in several different things it does have his weaknesses though. I think spellcaster should not be as powerful at first level as they have them currently and fifth edition. This is of course my own very own opinion. Other people have said that it's actually better the way it's set up now. The fact remains that it doesn't matter. What matters, is whether or not you enjoyed the game. If you haven't played it then you need to figure out what you think is wrong Homebrew something else if you need to and fix what you think is wrong. This doesn't mean that 5th edition is bad it doesn't mean that any of the additions are bad to be honest. What it does mean is that you need to find something that fits you. Nothing else matters. Role-playing games are exactly that role-playing! If you're not having fun at any of this then there's no point in playing role-playing games of any type.


Nothing. 3.5 is the pinnacle and i will die on this hill.


I am reading this more as "what d&d is good at?" instead of 5e specifically. 5e (and other D&D editions, and Pathfinder) is a system that excels in combat strategy to me. You don't need most of the rules to do any of the roleplaying and storytelling, but the turn-based combat on a grid is a truly incredible strategy game with high replayability. Off combat, you probably gonna rely more on DM and playgroup skills, but that is true for all RPGs I think. And D&D does offer great tools for world-building and high fantasy, there is a large number of content being produced nonstop by wizards of the coast and even more by third parties and homebrew. No other TTRPG has the same infrastructure available to the d&d players.


I've read D&D 5e, but I've never played it. I don't particularly want to play it. In fact, I can't imagine myself choosing to play it. But I am sure I can have some fun with it if, somehow, I'll end up playing it. We all have personal preferences, after all. I know those things with a good degree of certainty because I've played plenty of other games and based on that I feel I know what I like and what I don't like in TTRPGs. I recommend you do the same. Play some other games, then make up your mind about D&D 5e.


I don't like 5e but I hardly think is a waste of money. You can introduce your friends to *Dungeons and Dragons* and they will recognize it, you can't do that with Savage Worlds, Dungeon World, Blades in the Dark or even Pathfinder. It's like a trap, if your friends bite it, you can then transition to other games as interest rises. There's [Into the Unknown](https://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/259831/Into-the-Unknown--Book-1-Characters) which translates 5e to something I enjoy better, to me this would be the next logical step.


so: 1. do you like playing 5e? if so, then there's no wasted money and it's fine. 2. do you not like it? if so, you spent some money on learning what you don't like and that's useful. I asked 5e players what they feel [5e really succeeds at RAW.](https://www.reddit.com/r/dndnext/comments/tu53zr/what_does_5e_really_succeed_at_raw_in/) I wanted to also know the positives, the good things, and the fun parts of the system. I don't think it's beyond redemption and who cares if it's imperfect so long as you don't feel cheated, and you're having fun? **that said:** I wanted to play dungeons & dragons style game that had better game design and overall more reliable mechanics than 5e does, so I decided to play pathfinder 2e. As a *system* trying to achieve the same kind of d20 heroic fantasy game, I think pathfinder 2e is superior in basically every single way, and I realized a lot of 5e homebrew was just recreating what was already native or supported in 2e. I think PF2e has a potentially higher initial learning curve (but not really, the beginner's box is more helpful than the 5e boxes are) but is overall an easier game to play or run. **to me, 5e is good at:** marketing D&D, seeming easy at first, and feeling very dungeons-and-dragons-ish. it's the best at being the most popular version of dungeons & dragons. otoh: Pathfinder is the best at being an ***excellent*** version of a current-era dungeons and dragons game. also, the entire rules system for pathfinder 2e is 100% legally free online, so spending money to play the game is more a matter of wanting the physical copies, the beginner's box, or to support Paizo. but you might love 5e already so...that's fine to keep playing.


Not what I like because I really don't like 5e anymore, but for my playing group and me, it was literally that. When we played 5e, we liked telling stories together, roleplaying as characters and npcs, and the system itself was avoided 99% of the time. (With system I'm meaning combat and other "complex" mechanics, the skills and rolls were ok). That depends on you and your group, if you like having a background system that don't do much on it's own, then it's perfect.


D&D 5e is good at doing "modern D&D" aka fantasy guardians of the galaxy. It is not good at doing anything from appendix N or even TSR era stuff. D&D 5e is ultimately an exercise in lost potential. It could have been a great game. Hell if you looked at the last two playtest packages they were more interesting than the game we eventually got. D&D 5e could have been so great, that 5.5 can still become one of the best iterations of D&D had wizards actually demonstrated some initiative in shaping the fantasy genre more than they allow the game to be shaped by pop culture. Inevitably 5e is the game that best serves the profits of wizards of the coast.


If you want to be a marvel superhero in fantasy world who saves the day, D&D is the game for you. If not, go play Savage Worlds or something.


i'm one of those mean toxic old grognards who mocks 5e players all the time. I am just kidding about it all. I don't care what you play. There are fundamental differences in how older games are played vs. 5e. But you can play 5e and also play these older games. Ideally, an RPG should be a bit of what is in the rules and a bit of what you home brew with your own group of players. IMHO Also ideally, you can make up your own adventures and have a boat load of fun without shoveling more cash at the giant corporation that just happens to own the IP for the game you play. IMHO


D&D5E is a good introduction to TTRPGs, but aside from that is a rather lackluster system, not worth the money you can spend on its books. For what they give, 5E books are way too expensive compared to better systems like Pathfinder (both 1st and 2nd edition), for example. That said, if you like the system you haven't really wasted money, if it manages to give you a good time with your friends that's money well spent.


If you want a more swashbuckling approach, check out 7th Sea. https://www.chaosium.com/7th-sea-core-rulebook-second-edition-hardcover/


Oh cool, my friend on discord made that doc. Listen, play what you like, but my friend was trying to say that people often try to make D&D something it isn't just because its the biggest name in town and listed alternatives based on preface. Were they vitrolic in their phrasing? Yeah but like that's the culture on Something Awful, it's part of the joke. Like how I reviewed the offical PR game like an 00s angry reviewer. It's just the culture there. Take the document for what it is: a list of suggested games you could play for certain types of experiences instead of D&D based on your intended campaign.


5e is pretty good at building an "advancement treadmill" (and I mean that in a good way) that stays interesting for a fairly long period, and doesn't _entirely_ break down and collapse for its whole length. That is, it excels at delivering a steady stream of "dopamine hits" over a very high number of gaming sessions in a campaign*. It looses points for doing this by increasing complexity over time, both in the number of options a player needs to juggle as they level up, and in the number of new products that become available to players. (I'd argue that _13th Age_, with the way it _upgrades_ or _exchanges_ options as characters level, rather than just adding more and more, is somewhat better at making "advancement treadmill" play compelling and manageable, but that doesn't take away the reality that 5e is good at it, too.) * 5e campaigns can go hundreds of sessions, which most games really can't do. Many would call that a detriment, maybe, but its a fact that 5e can do it.


I think 5e is great at giving the player lots of flavour and fluff in the form of backgrounds and subclasses whilst remaining reasonably balanced in tier 1 and 2. It’s also easy and expected to use optional rules, homebrew and dms fiat. If you’re playing with a functional group these are really good things!


It's good at high magic medieval superheroes. And not much else.


While the opinion of the author might have been on the negative side, they did suggest a lot of interesting games for people to consider if they're so inclined. So that's one upside.


I've been gaming for over three decades, and D&D (5E and otherwise) is really good at being a role-playing game. Where you get a group together, make characters, and have one person be the GM, and have fun playing those characters interacting with the world. Combat is fun, RPing is fun, exploration is fun. I've played a zillion games over the years, from the most indie of the indie (TWERPS, anyone?) to all editions of D&D, and while system matters, is usually doesn't matter a lot. What I mean by that is if you play a game strictly by the rules as written, almost all of them generate pretty dull results, albeit some are better than others. The group needs to elevate the spirit of the game to have great game sessions, and because groups enjoy different things, and often the kinds of things they enjoy remain consistent, groups tend to bend systems in similar directions. If you are having fun, keep doing it. It's interesting to try out different approaches and styles and rules and mechanics to see if there are others things you enjoy - learning and picking and choosing different bits here and there to add to your toolbox. I've found the most Holy of Internet RPG Darlings to be crazy dull (my group \*hates\* Fate games, even though two of my players are all about story over game, and besides trying 4 different Fate-based games), and enjoyed supposedly terrible games (Rifts, 4E). D&D 5E is a great game that has a lot of well thought out rules and systems, and it has delivered incredible results. It has brought more people into the RPG world than any other game system, has created amazing cultural phenomenon (Critical Role & Vox Machina, for instance), and is just a fun system to play with. That doesn't mean you won't get sick of it, and no RPG is the nirvana some people seek. And I'm more than happy to internet battle anyone that disagrees!


D&D to me is good at encouraging using tables, comming up with mechanics, organizing stuff and selling lots of products And as mentioned, if ypu had fun it would ot be a waste of money. I started playing d&d and enjoyed those games. But being where I am now, I would never run a D&D game again “by the books”.


Exposing people to the hobby and not overwhelming them with Mechanics or too many choices.


There’s a lot of hipster hate for D&D, where people crap on it because it’s popular. Envy because everyone knows D&D while their personal favourite small publisher RPG is so unknown it doesn’t even have a Wikipedia page and you can only get the books at conventions from the publishers using physical cash. D&D is a great heroic fantasy roleplaying game. And it’s a very hackable game, so you can customize it to fit your needs. It has a nice level of complexity, where it feels dense but is fairly easy to learn but there’s lots of secrets and system mastery that reward you for delving deeper. And there’s lots of lore and history to engage with.


Provides a robust ruleset for roleplaying in medieval fantasy.