In just under two weeks, you can stop holding your breath. The Dungeons & Dragons Character Builder will finally be available for Mac users. And in keeping with tradition, Wizards of the Coast has swung a double-edged sword at the problem of cross-platform character creation. And, in keeping with tradition, D&D fans’ reactions are mixed.
What’s the big deal? Cross-platform is good, right? Well, let’s take a look at what rocks about this announcement and what’s less than cool.
- Platform-independent: it’s web-based, so it should work on Macs and PCs alike. No supported Linux version, but it might be workable.
- No monthly patches to download
- “Aggressive feature update schedule” that “won’t be purely content,” according to Paolo Marcucci, the Software Development Manager for D&D Digital Studio
- Access to your character data from multiple computers
- The big complaint is that this version of the builder will require an active internet connection
- No export feature at launch
- Lack of customization at launch (e.g., no house rules)
- Requires a login to D&DI
- Built on Silverlight, a technology which Microsoft has publicly claimed it is abandoning for web application development in favor of HTML5
- If Silverlight is the long-term strategy, it’s unlikely that an in-house mobile version will be available any time soon
What do you think? Happy that you can finally roll up a D&D character on your Mac? Concerned about the directions the D&D Digital Studio is taking? Leave a comment.