I've re-written this damned thing 5 times now...I'm DONE! Take it or leave it, it's my opinion!
So I hear there's an "edition war" going on out there. I haven't seen any fighting yet, but I'm sure it's only a matter of time until my FLGS is reinforced and staffed with armed sentries to keep the "enemy" out. Who is the enemy? You might ask, the answer might surprise you...because they are probably sharing a gaming table with you! You didn't know? Goodness, watch yourself. Any second your travelling companions could suddenly acquire at will powers and fly across the table at your throat!
If you think this sounds stupid, join the club. I refer of course, to the 4E vs. 3E debate that is currently (still - bleck!) being fought out in scattered pockets across the webiverse. A few weeks ago, I was toting my rifle (a 3e rifle if it makes a difference) and doing my part to save the world too. Luckily, after a minor bit of dickery, I was able to gain some perspective...and move on.
http://chattydm.net/2008/07/15/the-tyranny-of-funis-a-load-of-baloney/ AND http://abutterflydreaming.wordpress.com/2008/07/17/a-cogent-observation/ AND
I have included links to a VERY interesting conversation that was part of my paradigm shift. (another point, you CAN change your mind at any time for any reason) While you're there, check out the rest of the sites and their attendant links - it's good stuff.
My own position, is that I'll stick to 3rd edition. Not because I'm boycotting WotC, but because I just like 3rd better. I won't waste either of our time justifying it, because I don't have to, and technically, I already have.
Choice is where the whole edition war begins to flounder. YOU HAVE A CHOICE!!! While it is unfortunate that there will be no more 3.X rulebooks printed, there must still be millions of them in circulation. As an aside, I still have all of my core 2nd edition books. Then there is the SRD, it's digital, and will never go away. Also, there is Paizo's Pathfinder RPG that is a community based project aimed at "fixing" the broke and suck of 3.5 with total backward compatibility. Yes there are legitimate reasons to be sore at WoTC for what they did, but NO you don't get a free pass to tell someone that they are an idiot for liking the new edition, that just makes you a jackass. (This goes both ways).
Instead, try actually listening to the other person. Forums and blogs being what they are, tend to only attract commenter's that are passionate about the subject. In reality ANY reason is a valid reason to make what is, essentially a personal choice. Disagree? Try telling http://http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/asia-pacific/4165209.stm that he shouldn't be a communist because...blah, blah, blah. Let me know how that works out, in the meantime, go play your game. Phew! I feel better already, catharsis isn't just a funny word!
In closing, There are a hundred reasons not to like ANY edition of D&D. Their validity is up to the individual. I have played 4e a few times myself. My kids like it, so it gets a pass - warts and all. That said, I don't particularly care for it, but neither will I attempt to belittle anyone who does. It's just a game.
PS - If you want to see a continuing debate on the mechanics (or lack thereof) then head on over the http://www.thealexandrian.net and read up on the play test and mechanical breakdown that a Mr. Justin Alexander details, good stuff regardless of which side of the "debate" you happen to be on.