Seminar Transcript - Class Design: From Assassins to Wizards
Okay, so there is a LOT of information from this seminar. The above link will give you all the details, but there's a few things I wanted to cover.
Vancian Magic - It's back! Or at least it is for the wizard and cleric. Classes like the fighter won't have spell-like powers, but they will have their own cool abilities to choose from. I have no idea on other spellcasting classes.
Rituals - Rituals will remain, but will be there for those uber-powerful spells that take time to prepare. I imagine that Timereaver would make the perfect ritual.
At-will Spells - It looks like they will return in the form of spells gained through feats, or something like that. So a great way of combining Vancian magic with the 4e at-wills.
Power Sources - They are no longer going to be referring to a class as primal, arcane, etc. However, they will say (for example) that a wizard casts arcane spells.
Feel of Magic - It sounds like they're going to get back to the feel of wonder magic had back in AD&D.
Classes - The class list, thus far, is made up of every class that's been in a PH1. So it might look something like this:
This is not a finalized list yet. I would guess that the Illusionist would be folded into the wizard (perhaps as some sort of modular abilities?).
There's a comment in the transcript about finding the right niche for the sorcerer since the other arcane classes are such strong archetypes.
And, it looks like some work has been done on the psion, but it's on a backburner for now. I honestly don't anticipate it ever being in a core PHB1.
Multiclassing - Will be more like 3e's. I think this is fantastic, as 3e had the best multiclass rules of any edition.
Overall, I like everything I'm hearing. I truly think this will be the best edition yet.