D&D Beyond Dev Update – Blood Hunter, Encounter Tracker & Ability Score Distribution Data

– Hello everyone, I’m
Adam with D&D Beyond, and I’m here with you again
for another development update and community Q&A session. We’re gonna jump into this, as always, where I can leave as much
time as possible for questions because I can never get
through the veritable deluge of them just coming at me non-stop. So, we’re gonna see how that goes today, see how much water I can wade through. Latest updates, we will talk
about data updates for sure. We’ve got some, we’ve
got a lot of information about ability scores today, and again, as always
with this information, some disclaimers. This is of course
across, I don’t even know how many million
characters we’re up to now, 30 million or something on D&D Beyond. So, it’s definitely D&D Beyond characters. There absolutely are some
weird outliers out there for people that are “breaking the rules”, or if your DM allows it,
not “breaking the rules”, and, you know, that kind of thing. So, yeah, there will be
some outliers occasionally. We do try to cull this
for active characters and the best that we know
how to do that on our side, but either way, very,
very fascinating look at ability score distribution
across different classes today is what we’re looking at. And then, upcoming
content, ask me anything. We are going to do POP Talk! this week. So, that’s where I take
three minutes or so and talk about anything that
you want me to talk about and I do my best to try to make this into something that is going
to make sense with D&D and, depending on the topic,
that is sometimes more funny than it is informative, but either way, we’ll see how that goes
today with POP Talk! If you have suggestions, preface that with “POP:” in the channel, if you have questions, type
“QUESTION:” before that, and then our magical question-o-matic vat will collect those, and then later we will go through the questions. So, latest updates. I mentioned a couple of weeks ago that we were attempting some
really rather ingenious updates that our architect and the
teams were able to come up with, following some of the
problems that we had had with weekend stability in particular because, I think I informed everyone that we had a spike,
you know, the weekend, that we had some downtime
that was twice as many concurrent users as we ever had. These are good problems
for us to have of course, but we want to make sure that we are more than prepared for anything
like that in the future. And so, the team came up with a really, really interesting solution, technically, and if you’re not technical
it’ll bore you to death, and if you are technical,
I wouldn’t be able to explain it to your liking. But we got all of that done and we are keeping up with the weekends
at this point in time. Very, very noticeable
gains after we were able to make those changes. So, that has been completed, and we are in really good shape as of now. I am sure that you have heard that, first of all, on a very serious note, about the horrible situation
in Australia with fires, and I am hopeful that you have heard about some of the charity efforts that are trying to help with that region. And one of those has been a bundle package where Matt Mercer has provided some updates to the Blood Hunter. We’ve received a lot
of questions about this and we are going to get
those updates on D&D Beyond, but we do not want to impact
any of the charitable giving that is going on right now, and so, those updates will be available
on D&D Beyond for the class following the two week
period that money is being collected for charity. So, we hope you understand
our decision in that matter. We don’t want to take
away from that in any way. And then, following that, when it becomes a pay what you want
free product yet again, that is when we will provide those updates for the Blood Hunter, so
keep an eye out for that. The Encounter Tracker,
this is work in progress, as we’ve talked about. I think, I don’t even know, I
don’t know, should I just…? I wasn’t planning to do
this, but should I impromptu show where we are with this, just so people actually believe? Let me see if it’s working right now before I get too far into it. So, let’s see. Maybe not really working yet. Oh, here’s what I can do,
I’m gonna backdoor it here. I’m gonna act like I know what that means from a technical perspective. All right, so let’s see. Yeah, let’s see if this works. Is this gonna? Ah, yeah, this’ll work nice. All right, so let me show you this, just for you to know
that it’s not vaporware. All right, we’re gonna come over here, and we are going to embiggen everything. So, we’ve got an encounter here, and in our encounter we’re gonna run that, and so we’re starting to get this here. So, we’re going to, I don’t think, oh, it does work. Auto-roll our initiative here, so we’ve got our
initiative, we can do that. I can go in here if my players
are rolling whatever here. Let me say that this is
like me rolling initiative for any of my characters. We’re gonna do that. We’re gonna start the encounter. So, we’ve got the encounter going here. You’re gonna see that, um, now, again, this is nowhere near final. This is starting to come together here, but you’ll be able to
see the stats, you know, pretty quickly on a simple
click, with your monster here, you can adjust hit points as
needed for your creatures. Here, as well, this is gonna
be cleaned up as we go forward, but essentially you’re going
to go down through all of this and be able to track
initiative, and it will give you the ability to continue to go through all of the different turns on here. You’re gonna see some of the stats that are important at a glance. All of this is coming together. The eventual plan is to get
this all into a side bar where you’re able to kinda manage this while looking at other
information on your screen, but again, super, super early,
so don’t clip this before, or clip this around the things where I’m saying super, super early, but I did want to demonstrate that we are making progress here, and we hope to get to alpha
before too much longer. All right. Uh, the D&D Player mobile app, starting to see some of
this come together as well. Very excited about this. We’re gonna be able to start
sharing some things with you pretty soon on that front as well. We are in progress on the
class feature variants, lot of complexity there that we probably could put in some some kind
of super quick fix for that, but we’re not really a quick fix company because we understand that if
we put in short-term solutions that are going to cause problems
for long-term solutions, in the end, the fans and
the community actually are gonna suffer more because of that. So, we could jury-rig some things and make it work right now, but we’re trying to look
at this more holistically to be able to support,
whether this is going to be an actual solution or not in
a public source at some point. So, we’re trying to go through
some of that right now, and figure out exactly
what scope and scale we’re gonna bite off here, but we hope to have more news
on that front soon as well. Dice rolling is coming, I saw some more on that this morning. It’s not quite ready to show you any more on that front yet, but it is coming. And then Apple authentication,
for sure, is also on the way, and that’s gonna be part
of the mobile app release but it’s also just kind of a requirement because that’s how Apple rolls, they just make everyone
kind of bend to their will and their wishes most of the time. So, it’s great that
they’ve got it like that, but that’s what we’re
gonna be doing and adding, Apple authentication. Let’s look at some data. All right. Basically, with the data today, we’re gonna look at
ability score distribution. Sorry, somebody sent me
something they shouldn’t have during the dev update, and it’s, like, totally cracking me up on the inside. So, data update, ability
score distribution per class. A few disclaimers here, again. We try to do the best that we can to identify active characters,
so a lot of times this data, I’m gonna give a shout out to ENWorld, it ends up on ENWorld, and people come in and dispute the accuracy of the data. The thing that I can tell you is that the data itself is accurate. All data is accurate. It’s depending on how you are
actually looking at that data to try to form opinions about that data. So, what I can say is that
we do the best that we can with the data itself, to
have active characters here, where we’re not just having
a thing full of outliers. But then also, what I can say, hold on one second, my sweet tea. I’ve got to change straws
to my other sweet tea, because that sweet tea
got too watered down. So now, there we go. All right, here we go. All right, all good. So, with this data, additionally, you’re not going to see an axis that is going to show you levels that we’re talking about here, so it really is just
gonna be ability scores and of all the characters of that class, here is where the ability scores fall. The reason that we are
not including levels here is because first of all, from
a presentation perspective, it’s gonna be really,
really complex for us to do this in a way that’s going to make any sense, really, whatsoever. But the other part of that is
as we have shown in the past, the vast majority of
characters on D&D Beyond are less than 10th level,
and that sweet spot appears to be somewhere,
you know, 3 to 7, okay? So, we’re kind of seeing
with that being the case most characters falling into
the lower to mid levels here. You’re going to have an
ability score increase or two for the vast majority of this data. So clearly, if you have
a level 20 character, and you’ve had, I don’t even know how many ability scores increases
a fighter ends up getting. I guess at least four, but
maybe five for a fighter. Sure, that’s going to
change this a little bit. But I’m just telling you that we have so few level 20 characters, that it’s not really making a huge impact to what you’re gonna see
with this distribution. So, few disclaimers
I’m throwing out there, and if you are a data scientist
I completely understand that this is probably an insulting
way to present this data, but we are trying to do it in a way that someone like me who
is not a data scientist can consume this and at least, you know, say, “Hey, that’s interesting,”
or, “That makes sense,” or, “That’s really surprising to me.” All right, disclaimers over. So, let’s look at the artificer. Now, this might be hard
to read on your screen, but just as we’re going through here, just keep in mind that it’s going to go down the left side, your
physical ability scores. So, it’s gonna be strength,
dexterity, constitution, and then it’s going to
go intelligence, wisdom, and charisma down the right side. All right? So, with artificers you
see that we definitely have a lot of dumping on the strength, which makes a lot of
sense because 8 and 10 are the most popular scores that are in strength for artificers. And then dexterity, 14 wins out, so, kind of between 12
and 14 is what we see a lot of that being for artificers. And then with constitution,
14 is also very, very popular. So, a very, kind of the
most typical artificer you’re going to see, is going to be an 8 in strength, a 14 in
dexterity, a 14 in constitution, a 15 in intelligence. So clearly, intelligence
being the key to the class, that’s going to be the biggest there. And then you see it just kind of creep up from there, 16, 17, 18. And then it looks like on wisdom
12 wins out barely over 10, and then finally, charisma
is 23%, 23% in 8s and in 10s. So for the artificer, I would
say, looking at our data, strength and charisma are
definitely dumped stats, where intelligence, naturally, is the stat that they’re focused on, followed by dexterity or constitution. For barbarian, strength,
as you might imagine, is very important for those folks. Hold on one second, I’m getting, like, tangled up or something in my wires. It’s making my feel like
I can’t move my head. All right, I can move my head again. All right, there we go. All right, so barbarian,
strength, naturally. Dexterity, the highest is 14
and 13, kind of in that range, and then you do see
that constitution of 15 is a big deal, as is 14. This all makes a lot of sense with things like unarmored, uh,
what is it called right now? Unarmored defense, that’s it. Unarmored defense for barbarian. You see that, for barbarians, intelligence is definitely
dumped a good bit. 33% have an 8 in that,
and then wisdom, actually, fairly decent showing for wisdom. It’s 10 or possibly even 12 is most popular in the distribution, and then charisma is
another relative dump stat, but some of them put a little
bit of it in there, in 12s. So, bards. You see that strength, again, I would certainly consider
that a dump stat for a bard. And then, you see the dexterity
reasonably high, around 14. And then constitution, they gotta have hit points to stay
alive, so it makes sense, because they insult everyone around them and they get attacked a whole bunch. So, that makes total sense for the bard. You see that intelligence is
really spread out for the bard. So, a decent amount of individuals are putting intelligence
as a dump stat for a bard, which I find is fascinating. So, I think that this is a
picture of the difference in the way that… Essentially, bards are
characterized in fifth edition, especially compared to
like, third edition, where a bard was very much, like, a lore master type character. But then, with the
introduction of something like the College of Valor, intelligence maybe seems less important for those types of characters. And so, I think that the
flexibility of fifth edition is on display here, and that is a really interesting thing to see. Wisdom, again, for a bard,
is all over the place, which you might expect for a
jack of all trades type class. And then naturally, charisma
is very important for the bard, and we see that reflected here. Cleric, this is a class that, again, really has a lot of utility, and can go in a lot of directions. You can have melee-based clerics, you can have more
spellcasting-based clerics. And so, I think you see that reflected in the ability score
distribution here as well. You see that most clerics have a pretty decent strength here, but you also see a
decent amount of clerics that are dumping that to an 8. And so, again, this is a situation where clerics are very versatile,
and it’s going to depend on which subclass is chosen
for a lot of these choices. But you see that dexterity
is dumped a good bit, or at least base line. But then again, you have 12s and 14s being pretty well represented here also. And so, I think this is
gonna be the difference between whether your
subclass gets heavy armor or medium armor, for instance. Constitution, 28% of clerics
have about a 14 in there, which, again, makes a lot of sense. You’ve got to stay alive in
order to keep the party alive. Intelligence, pretty
typical there for clerics, average of 10. Wisdom, naturally, is their favorite stat, but then you have a lot of
disparity between charisma. So, are you, you know, an evangelist that has a golden tongue, preaching your deity’s
gospel to the masses? Or are you a gruff,
intimidating bounty hunter for religious relics of
your religious institution? So, I think that, you know,
whatever that spread is, clerics are, I believe,
the most spread out that we’re seeing here with
the ability score distribution. All right, we’re gonna druids,
and then we gotta go over and do a little quick voting thing here. The druids, you’re gonna
see that 8s and 10s are the most for them in strength. Dexterity goes up a bit for druid, again, likely because of
heavy, or uh, medium armor. But 22% have 14 in there. And then constitution, 14 is very popular. Intelligence, pretty good
spread of intelligence here, but druids do tend, you’ll see
here, between the 12 and 15, they tend to be a little more intelligent than a lot of the other classes. And then wisdom, naturally,
again, is a big score here. And then charisma has a relatively
good spread here as well, but you do see that most
druids are dumping it at 8. So, we would expect a pretty
good spread for the fighter, and we are certainly seeing it. All right, so for fighter, strength is going to be
pretty high with a 15 here. Dexterity is also, you
see, between 12 and 15, being very well represented here. So again, is your fighter an archer, range-oriented character, or
a melee-oriented character? Constitution at 14 is the winner here, but 15 is also very high. So, all the physical ability scores, very important for fighters of any type. And then you see that
intelligence, you know, definitely a dump stat for many, but just middle of the road
average is pretty popular. Wisdom, actually, again, your average of 10 is pretty popular, but we do have a decent
amount with a 12 there. And then charisma is a dump stat, or at least a middle average stat. You do see a little bit more than I would expect maybe
in the 12 category there. So, those are possibly fighters that are a little more
leadership-oriented. But yes, fighter, definitely
no surprises expected there. Monks, you see that
strength is either average, dumped a decent amount. 12 is pretty high as well here. Dexterity, of course,
very important for a monk, so most of them have a
very high score there. And then you see some monks
are what they call MAD, for the cool kids in the circles there, so multiple ability dependent. So, being MAD like they
are, you’re gonna see that maybe the dexterity, for instance, 14 is also pretty popular here, and that’s because getting
everything to 15s and 16s is tough, as many things as monks need, in particular with their
wisdom, for instance. So, constitution, relatively high. 13s, 14s for monks. Intelligence, middle of
the road is most popular, and then wisdom you see that 15s and 14s are very well represented. Again, multiple ability dependent, you see that charisma is
definitely a dump stat for monks. Paladins, my favorite. So with paladins, strength,
very important for paladins. Dexterity is dumped in a
lot of cases, or average, because of heavy armor. Paladins don’t really have incredibly compelling
ranged combat builds, and so, again, melee fighters,
all that’s to be expected. Constitution’s also at
a pretty high point. You see intelligence is
dumped a bit for paladins, or average, and then wisdom
tends to be middle of the road, average, or even a little
higher with the 12s coming out there. And then naturally, charisma, is very important for a paladin. My streamed character,
Briv, has an 18 in charisma, because it’s just too good
to give everyone +4 bonuses on saving throws, for
just standing next to you, and allowing your amazingness to just simply radiate onto them. And so, we all want to just radiate our amazingness onto others around us, we all want to have that kind of aura. And so, paladins are gonna
have high charisma scores. Rangers. Pretty big spread for
rangers here as well, but you do see that dexterity, very important for the ranger, for many, many types of builds that go out there for rangers. You see that strength is
dumped in a good bit of cases, but average to slightly above average. And then constitution for many characters is an important thing, hit points matter. Intelligence is average
to slightly above average. Wisdom, which again, makes
a lot of sense, is higher. You know, 14, 15 range here. And then charisma is
definitely a ranger dump stat. And I mean, that is just all
the way from the early days, about Strider, and all of the, you know, he’s just so mean, puffing his little pipe and looking at all those
halflings so judgmentally. So, that’s what’s going on
with rangers and charisma. Rogue, strength is a dump stat. Dexterity is hugely important for a rogue. Constitution, again, we see 12s to 14s represented pretty universally
across all character classes. Constitution is an
important ability score. And then intelligence for a rogue is a little higher than
typical class, other classes. Wisdom’s also a little higher, but you do see that some dump that. A decent amount of characters dump that. And then for the rogue,
charisma’s also important. So I think for the rogue,
the important thing here is that strength is the primary
dump stat that we’re seeing, but then you are seeing that
kind of the dump stat can vary depending on, again, the
flexibility of the rogue class, and what kind of character you’re playing. Sorcerer. Strength is not a strong
suit for a lot of sorcerers. You see that, again, constitution,
near that 14 sweet spot. Dexterity is pretty
important for a sorcerer. And then you see intelligence
is pretty high for sorcerers, and charisma is, of course, the crowning ability score for sorcerers. We only have a couple more of these. I hope this is interesting,
and I hope not everybody is just, like, completely
falling asleep out there. Lots of classes to go through. Warlock, dumping strength, and
then you see that dexterity, again, pretty important
for this spellcaster that doesn’t have heavy armor. And then constitution, as
expected for all classes, in that range. And then intelligence is,
you know, average mostly. Wisdom is average to
slightly above average. And then charisma at that 15 is very important for a warlock. Any warlock that needs
to just Eldritch Blast over and over with their Agonizing Blast, charisma is going to be a big deal. As expected with the wizard,
intelligence is everything. Strength is definitely the
primary dump stat for wizards. Charisma is also another dump stat that we’re seeing for
wizards, at the 8 level here. And then you see that
dexterity, again, for wizards and constitution is very important, because they’ve got to stay
alive with very little armor. So, that was a wide look
at all the characters, millions of characters on D&D
Beyond, active characters, and where the ability score
distribution is coming for those characters. So, most of this was to be as expected, but we do see that a very
high number of characters really do take that term
dump stat pretty seriously, and they put as low of a statistic as they can in those scores. So, you don’t see a preference towards making sure everything
is average, for instance. There are definitely characters out there that are dumping one
statistic over another, and by class, this does definitely seem to follow some expected trends. So, upcoming. So, AL support is something that’s on the radar for this year that we really want to get to. Spoken about before, inventory
enhancements are definitely something that we’re targeting
and circling for 2020. We’ve got a site-wide survey
that’s coming out soon. And I’ve been kind of teasing it, but there is Dev Update:
A Community Musical. That is going to be
coming pretty soon here. We’ll announce the date for
that actually pretty soon. So, this is gonna be an exciting
time for the Dev Update, and I have had far too much fun re-writing some very familiar songs, and, you know, the hardest part of this whole thing is not to just completely die laughing while I’m recording the songs. But yes, we will be having a musical that will be coming up within the next couple of months here, and it’ll be a good
old time, I assure you.

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