Well, maybe and maybe not. There is no denying that the rumor mill is working overtime now that Monte Cook has been hired on to consult for Wizards of the Coast. He was one of the major designers of 3e (not 3.5) and is open to thinking in all sorts of directions on all sorts of topics relating to the hobby. So here he is, back with the Wizards and one can't help wonder if there might be something to the rumors.
The relevant passage on the official website that has everyone buzzing is this from Mike Mearls: "Starting next week, I'm turning this column over to acclaimed game designer Monte Cook. ~ I've spent the past several months talking about D&D's past and how that relates to its future. It's now time to focus much more on the future of the game. Monte has an unmatched design pedigree in the RPG field, and for that reason we've brought him on board to work with R&D in making D&D the greatest RPG the world has seen. Over the next few weeks, Monte will use this column to share his thoughts about the game."
So, Monte is back on the payroll, involved once more with research and developement, and his focus is the future of the game. I can see why this kind of announcement would get the rumors flying.
I have been a fan of Monte's work for quite some time. While he and I do not agree on all aspects of DMing, that is natural. If two people are sharing ideas on something and both agree 100%, one of them is redundant.
Will this increase my chances of being pulled back in by Wizards if they do release a 5th edition worked on by Monte? Not necessarily. I will definitely take a good look at it, but I think going back to my roots has shown me the version of the game best suited to me as a DM.
Here is some homework for everyone reading as well as for me . . . keep the ears and eyes open for any additional details to see if we can figure out if the rumor mill is right. Since it typically takes about 3 years from the decision to create a new edition to the time of release, there is probably plenty of time for us to dig up some juicy grubs to feed the rumor addicts out there.