As D&D Next and eventually 5e were coming out there was a discussion about whether or not questions from the playtest should be tagged separately from questions about the edition upon its release (How should we tag the "next" edition of D&D?). The winning answer and policy we went with was Magician's answer to just transition to as a synonym and let questions be updated to reflect the published released rules of D&D 5e.

For general questions I agree with this, however I have a few, and have seen a few other questions that are specifically asking about playtest rules or adventures written for D&D Next playtest versions (such as Dead in Thay, Ghosts of Dragonspear castle), where this seems less applicable.

My own question asking about creating characters above level 1 for a Dead in Thay game (Does D&D Next or Dead in Thay have rules for equipping new PCs above level 1?) just elicited an answer referencing the DMG despite it stating in the title and body of the question that this was a question about D&D Next rules.

Should D&D Next have its own tag to prevent answers like this from popping on on playtest specific questions?


3 Answers 3


I think we could do with distinctly tagging some of the D&D Next Playtest questions.

There are lots of questions which still apply to D&D 5e, and the idea is/was just to correct them with the finalised 5e rules, which seems to have been a pretty good idea for most of our playtest questions. For example: How does bull rushing work in D&D Next? was asked and answered in June within the "D&D Next" playtest framework, and answered again in August after the full D&D 5e rules were released.

However, there are also questions that were very specifically about playtest material. They have no relevance to D&D 5e and won't get updated for it, and don't make too much sense being tagged for 5e. These questions ought to be tagged with something like (the "D&D Next" name is still used synonymously with "D&D 5e" in some places, so it's better to distinguish it as a playtest). Beside your question (Does D&D Next or Dead in Thay have rules for equipping new PCs above level 1?), some examples that I can identify are:

(Plus questions that cover material that no longer exists in D&D 5e, which I don't have the materials to identify.)

So, sticking coherently with the policy of "tag what's in the question": questions strictly only about the D&D Next playtest material get tagged as playtest material, questions "upgradeable" to D&D 5e get tagged as such and improved to match the 5e state of affairs.

I'll note that one of these playtest questions, How are dual-wielding penalties applied?, was locked for historical significance. Doing that and clearly marking all of them as just playtest material is an option that's on the table, but I'm not advocating for doing that in this answer. (They should probably be marked more clearly than a comment if we do this — something more like a boilerplate post notice at the top in a quote box.)


I just unwittingly started an "authoritative reference needed" bounty for a question about a typo that appeared only in the D&D 5e playtest, because I thought it was a proper D&D 5e question: Spell DC Saving Throws. I was informed just afterwards it was playtest material. (I raised a flag requesting a bounty refund, and received it — thank you, moderators.)

I was not familiar enough with the material to recognise it was only about the playtest — but I was familiar enough with our system to recognise it lacked citations and needed improvement to meet Stack Exchange quality bars. It had just accrued a new answer from a new user so it arrived on the front page to my notice. Had I known it was a playtest, I would have done nothing. This is a bit frustrating for me.

My position has changed from a sorta-60%-support "sure, could be good" into more of a 90%-support "yes, please make it clear what these questions are about so that I don't run into situations like this again."

I would tag that question , but it appears to be a synonym of . I have edited the question with a banner that makes it clear it was a playtest question:

Playtest question only: This question is about materials associated with the "D&D Next" public playtest that ran through 2012–2014, and is not about current materials.


No. Unless someone is really trying to run a game using playtest rules only, these questions are basically dead. There are very few dnd-next questions and the rate of people doing something with them is so low that it does not merit any kind of active policy response.

If someone mis-chimes in on a question - comment and downvote just like you would in any situation.

We don't want to use tags to describe every iteration of every rules system in the world, we use words in the question to do that. Just like with 4e we just had 4e, not early 4e and post-Essentials 4e. Someone didn't read the words? OK. That doesn't bode well for them reading the tags either.

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    \$\begingroup\$ Isn't one of the Stack's principles that no question is ever dead enough to justify actively ignoring? \$\endgroup\$
    – BESW
    Oct 21, 2016 at 21:44
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    \$\begingroup\$ You are welcome to waste your own time to your satisfaction. But the question is do we need it, and the answer is no. \$\endgroup\$
    – mxyzplk
    Oct 22, 2016 at 0:30
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    \$\begingroup\$ I'm on board with the answer being "No," but I'm confused by how "Nobody plays system X anymore" is relevant to a question about dealing with people currently answering system X questions with system Y answers. Seems like maybe the real reason is that these mis-matched answers don't happen often enough to warrant an organised policy response? Obviously somebody cares about the mismatched answers, or this meta wouldn't exist. \$\endgroup\$
    – BESW
    Oct 22, 2016 at 1:19
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    \$\begingroup\$ Thank you, this is a far more constructive and unabrasive way to approach this meta Q. What BESW said resonates strongly with me — yes, people care or the meta wouldn't exist, so "who cares?" about someone's concern isn't appropriate. \$\endgroup\$ Oct 22, 2016 at 15:04

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