Candlekeep Forum
Candlekeep Forum
Home | Profile | Register | Active Topics | Active Polls | Members | Private Messages | Search | FAQ
Username:
Password:
Save Password
Forgot your Password?

 All Forums
 Forgotten Realms Journals
 General Forgotten Realms Chat
 Year for Scourge of the Sword Coast?

Note: You must be registered in order to post a reply.
To register, click here. Registration is FREE!

Screensize:
UserName:
Password:
Format Mode:
Format: BoldItalicizedUnderlineStrikethrough Align LeftCenteredAlign Right Horizontal Rule Insert HyperlinkInsert Email Insert CodeInsert QuoteInsert List
   
Message:

* HTML is OFF
* Forum Code is ON
Smilies
Smile [:)] Big Smile [:D] Cool [8D] Blush [:I]
Tongue [:P] Evil [):] Wink [;)] Clown [:o)]
Black Eye [B)] Eight Ball [8] Frown [:(] Shy [8)]
Shocked [:0] Angry [:(!] Dead [xx(] Sleepy [|)]
Kisses [:X] Approve [^] Disapprove [V] Question [?]
Rolling Eyes [8|] Confused [?!:] Help [?:] King [3|:]
Laughing [:OD] What [W] Oooohh [:H] Down [:E]

  Check here to include your profile signature.
Check here to subscribe to this topic.
    

T O P I C    R E V I E W
Mournblade Posted - 09 Mar 2014 : 21:44:15
Hello scribes!

Am I missing the Calendar of Harptos year for Scourge of the Sword Coast? Any help would be greatly appreciated!

25   L A T E S T    R E P L I E S    (Newest First)
pukunui Posted - 24 Feb 2015 : 22:23:51
Forgive me for the thread necro. I'm about to run Scourge of the Sword Coast as a follow-up to Legacy of the Crystal Shard. Since the latter actually has a specific date, I'm going to set the former in 1486 DR. However, what I want to know is how much time is supposed to have passed since the events of Ghosts of Dragonspear Castle. Months? Years? I'd like to be able to refer to some of the events from Ghosts in passing, like the burning of the Laughing Hollow - should I describe it as having been quite recent or what?
Thauranil Posted - 14 Mar 2014 : 16:11:27
Its good to see the designers taking the time to reply to a fellow scribes questions. Bravo.
hashimashadoo Posted - 13 Mar 2014 : 16:08:50
Yes, bravo Matt Sernett. Thanks for giving a more specific answer than mine.

I think in my Grand History Expansion Pack, I'll put 'circa 1485 DR'.
Darkmeer Posted - 13 Mar 2014 : 14:17:52
Having been lurking for some time, I agree with Markustay and Wooly's posts above.

I also appreciate the designers coming to Candlekeep and posting.

/d
Markustay Posted - 13 Mar 2014 : 14:08:08
/AGREED - ditto to all of the above.

I - and just about everyone here on THIS site - are all 'lore junkies', and every day I learn something new, as I am sure most of the rest of us do. What that means is that we have all become painfully aware of the anachronisms, gaffs, and in some (very few) cases, out-right trash, that has crept into The Forgotten Realms - the setting we love so dearly - over the years.

What I have found is that some (very few) folks just want new lore, and aren't all that concerned with continuity problems. Thats pretty rare, though. Whats nearly as rare are the folks in my camp - that I want PERFECT continuity, but understand that as a setting matures, sometimes designers have to 'go back inside' and 'dig deep', like surgeons removing a cancer. I use to be one of the ones of the opinion that should NEVER happen - that we need to keep everything intact... but I now understand thats just a pipe-dream, and foolish. There are certain things that really NEED to be fixed, even if it means tweaking the lore. I am not talking about grand, sweeping changes ( *cough* 4e *cough*), I am talking about small 'adjustments' to make everything fit together better, even if that means changing a date here or there.

I would much rather see THAT, then what I have been seeing happen over the years. At first, it wasn't too bad. Two (or more) Oboulds? Thats fine. Orcs breed like rabbits and aren't known for originality. Wulgreth the lich who had a thing against Karsus? Oh yeah... there were two unrelated guys with that name (pretty gawd-awful IMHO). That the Northmen and the Ffolk of the Moonshaes once had a peaceful relationship where they worked together, then somehow managed to forget all about that a few years later and have to work through it all over again... kinda silly. When you have to create vast cover-stories to hide the mistakes - stories that aren't all that believable - thats just very damaging to the setting, IMO. Too many times this method has been applied, and all the patch-jobs are wearing thin.

I used to be one of those people who would come-up with wild explanations when there were inconsistencies, but now I feel I wasn't doing FR any favors. Better to just admit the mistake and move on... as Paizo does. Otherwise, you wind up with a big fat mess with tons of silly lore to hide all the 'smelly bits', and thats just not good. You can cover some bad fish with delicious sauce all you want, but sooner or later, people are going to get a taste of that smelly fish and want to spit it out.

So I guess what I am saying is that I applaud the efforts of Matt Sernett and approve of this direction The Realms are turning in. This setting has 'jumped the shark' so many times its no longer even fantasy - its purely delusional. No more silly cover-stories, please. Just tweak what you have to and lets move forward.
Wooly Rupert Posted - 13 Mar 2014 : 04:17:22
quote:
Originally posted by Sernett

I eat, drink, and sleep issues of FR canon and continuity. Products made for FR over the years have directly contradicted one another, and sometimes that's happened within a product multiple times. This is often something where we can't smooth it over with some explanation. One product is correct and the other is wrong. However, we don't want to say a whole product is non-canonical, nor can we be in the business of publishing errata for 20-year-old books. So guiding the details of the world going forward is always a process of stating what we want to be true and not wasting space naysaying we don't.

That said, until just a few years ago, the process of staying true to canon was one of picking up paper copies of products and reading through them. Given the thousands upon thousands of pages written about the Realms, it's frankly astonishing that the Realms continuity is as good as it is. I have to give my predecessors enormous credit.

Today we benefit from searchable electronic documents, which saves creators and editors time and improves accuracy. But even with the advent of PDFs, it can still be a daunting task to comb through the 664 documents that pop up when you search for "Waterdeep." However, we're working on even better tools to help keep the vision and tone of the Realms (people, places, organizations, things, and so on) consistent. So I'm hopeful that consistency will improve moving forward hand in hand with presenting a more detailed and absorbing setting.



It's good to know that you guys finally have a tool like that to utilize.

And I should like to thank you for taking the time to enter these halls to converse with us. It is appreciated.
Plaguescarred Posted - 13 Mar 2014 : 01:30:24
quote:
Originally posted by Sernett

we're working on even better tools to help keep the vision and tone of the Realms (people, places, organizations, things, and so on) consistent. So I'm hopeful that consistency will improve moving forward hand in hand with presenting a more detailed and absorbing setting.
Welcome to Candlekeep Matt and thanks for chiming in, its really appreciated!

I'm glad to hear WoTC is working on a tool to help keep the vision and tone of the Realms consistent. Is this for R&D staff only, or its something Realms fans might get to see released someday? Cuz that sound like something that could be rather cool to have... :cough: Lika world bible? :cough:
George Krashos Posted - 13 Mar 2014 : 01:16:01
quote:
Originally posted by Sernett

I eat, drink, and sleep issues of FR canon and continuity.



Welcome to the club.

-- George Krashos
Eltheron Posted - 13 Mar 2014 : 00:41:13
Matt, I do appreciate your replies on this - even if I disagree with some of the core assumptions that are being made about timelines and the players/customers.

Players asking for, using and enjoying event continuity and clear timelines has always been one of the core things people asked for in Realms products. Current "clack" and historical notes are often the first things we turn to as customers. It really gives the feel of a progressing and living world, and it's one of the main reasons why the Grand History of the Realms sold so well and was so positively viewed (well, except for the final parts of the 3E-4E bridge timeline where things started going wonky).

As a rule, Realms players want to see a detailed timeline. We want to know the exact day, month and year when Bhaal was reborn in Baldur's Gate. It enriches play when we can tie in world events to our home games, it makes the setting history rich and enhances verisimilitude for those who love game immersion. It's why many gamers become so attached as fans of the Realms. And as they say in publishing: with attachment, sales will come.

I think it's a mistake to keep things vague. Just my opinion.

Sernett Posted - 12 Mar 2014 : 23:57:12
I eat, drink, and sleep issues of FR canon and continuity. Products made for FR over the years have directly contradicted one another, and sometimes that's happened within a product multiple times. This is often something where we can't smooth it over with some explanation. One product is correct and the other is wrong. However, we don't want to say a whole product is non-canonical, nor can we be in the business of publishing errata for 20-year-old books. So guiding the details of the world going forward is always a process of stating what we want to be true and not wasting space naysaying we don't.

That said, until just a few years ago, the process of staying true to canon was one of picking up paper copies of products and reading through them. Given the thousands upon thousands of pages written about the Realms, it's frankly astonishing that the Realms continuity is as good as it is. I have to give my predecessors enormous credit.

Today we benefit from searchable electronic documents, which saves creators and editors time and improves accuracy. But even with the advent of PDFs, it can still be a daunting task to comb through the 664 documents that pop up when you search for "Waterdeep." However, we're working on even better tools to help keep the vision and tone of the Realms (people, places, organizations, things, and so on) consistent. So I'm hopeful that consistency will improve moving forward hand in hand with presenting a more detailed and absorbing setting.
Mapolq Posted - 12 Mar 2014 : 23:35:33
Separate post, since it is a side comment.

Markus (again, not trying to "convert" you), but Elminster's Forgotten Realms is roughly timed. It is just very vaguely so, but there are many references that clearly place the relevance of its contents between 1350DR and 1485DR or so (the lifetime of the published Realms, save for a few products). Which in this particular case is actually understandable, because EFR is not a book about events and people, it's a book about customs. And while customs do change, there is still a clear trend that can be seen throughout large periods of time. When you are talking about the way Romans bathed around the time of the late Republic, you are much less likely to put dates everywhere than if you're talking about the Second Punic War.
Mapolq Posted - 12 Mar 2014 : 23:25:53
quote:
Originally posted by Sernett

Here's a longer answer:

(longer answer )




Sernett, thank you for this clarification. I hope my particular post did not sound trite, I meant exactly what I wrote. The word "curious" sometimes implies disbelief and/or disapproval, and I am glad that was not the sense you meant it, that you rather meant the sense I outlined after. And I do stand by what I said - that I think WotC record on continuity has been bad. Not terrible, mind you, but I am a stickler for continuity and not one for letting bad stuff go by (even though I can enjoy the Realms despite everything I find is wrong about it). But I hope it gets better, and if people like you are willing to talk about it, then that's a good sign.

I'm a guy who doesn't buy published adventures at all. I don't care if stuff is set in stone because I'm not going to use it in a game. When I DM, I usually change a lot of stuff anyway. But I fully understand why lots of people would care, and if there's a kind of product where it makes a lot of sense to withhold information on specific issues such as these, it's adventures. Adventures are the gaming accessories par excellence so it is paramount that they adhere to what is good for a gaming session (or many), and not necessarily for the setting as a whole. Which goes full circle to explain why I don't usually read these kinds of products at all, but that's just my way of enjoying the Realms.

Edit: Grammar.
Eltheron Posted - 12 Mar 2014 : 23:12:18
D&D Encounters modules have a very specific release schedule and are clearly meant to be played in a specific sequence, even if you use different characters each time. There aren't specific tie-ins between them, true, but the order is planned and laid out. There's even a Sundering Adventurer's Chronicle application for sending the results of your adventures weekly to WotC so that they "will subsequently help shape the future story of the Forgotten Realms." Even the animated videos indicate a sequence.

Keeping dates vague, particularly when major events like the rebirth of a deity are involved (Murder in BG), doesn't serve any purpose.

Players who don't care about the order of events, or timeline continuity, won't limit their play or restrict their play order at home just because something is dated. They'll just do what they want anyway.

The purpose of a timeline is to allow those who want to follow canonical events closely make references to specific events in their own games (which enriches play).

Markustay Posted - 12 Mar 2014 : 22:45:58
quote:
Originally posted by Eltheron

LOL, "so people don't limit their play experiences because of a fictional calendar" is about as corporate-speak handed-down language as one can get. It's like they think we need protecting from ourselves, because DATES ARE SO LIMITING.

Having a set date would allow people to craft a richer play experience by enabling DMs to tie into other historical events.

Keeping things vague, particularly when specific world events are happening, just muddies the timeline for everyone: DMs, authors, players, everyone.

People who don't care about continuity of events aren't going to be stopped by timeline dates anyway. There's no point in keeping it vague.

I give his response a full-on Captain Picard double facepalm.
On the other hand, I have no problem at all with that, because a 3-year window still places it within the timeline, unlike a completely 'timeless' piece of information, like much of the Elminster's Forgotten Realms (and once again, I am NOT maligning said tome, just addressing what I perceive as a possible short-coming).

As Matt Sernett was just good enough to point out, there are a bunch of things happening within that window, and its left somewhat open so that the events can be played in any other. We have a timeline that encompasses 36.5 THOUSAND years! I think a 3-year window is precise enough... and I'm as 'diehard grognard' as they come.

I would assume there IS an official order to the events, which will likely be eventually released in one way or another... but that should happen LONG after the initial release of 5eFR and D&Dnext, after everyone has had time to play-through the adventures (because then it will be too late to have painted DMs into a corner).

Sernett Posted - 12 Mar 2014 : 22:23:21
Here's a longer answer:

I asked my question via twitter because I was genuinely curious why an individual D&D player wanted to know the "official date" of the adventure.

Some of the comments here are along the lines of wanting situate the events of the adventure among other events in the world to get a sense of what is happening in the world. It's a fulfilling thing to grasp the world as something real in your imagination. I get that. Trust me. I owe my career to being a super fan of the Realms (and Spelljammer, and Birthright, and Mystara, and Ravenloft, and Masque of the Red Death, and...). That said, that's not everyone's reason, so I was curious about the particular reason for the question.

Ghosts of Dragonspear Castle, Murder in Baldur's Gate, and Legacy of the Crystal Shard are connected in that they occur against the background of the Sundering, but they aren't interconnected events. They aren't designed to be played in any particular sequence, but (particularly with the flexibility of the new edition) you could play them in some sequence of your own devising. We track timelines internally to avoid canonical kerfuffles, but it's not helpful to most players to limit their play by dictating the order or by having adventure plots officially play out before the PCs get to the location. And it's not in our interests to give our products a shelf life based on an in-world expiration date.

So I get it. I understand wanting to know "what really happened." Later products will spill the beans on changes to the Realms canon based upon earlier ones when its a natural fit for the product at hand (for instance, when we go back to Baldur's Gate, we need to tell the official version of events). However, people playing their home games should feel free to tell their version of events and play adventures in whatever order they wish. D&D is a game about making stuff up with your friends.
Wooly Rupert Posted - 12 Mar 2014 : 22:12:17
*shrugs* It's still a better response than saying something happened outside of time.
Eltheron Posted - 12 Mar 2014 : 22:06:36
LOL, "so people don't limit their play experiences because of a fictional calendar" is about as corporate-speak handed-down language as one can get. It's like they think we need protecting from ourselves, because DATES ARE SO LIMITING.

Having a set date would allow people to craft a richer play experience by enabling DMs to tie into other historical events.

Keeping things vague, particularly when specific world events are happening, just muddies the timeline for everyone: DMs, authors, players, everyone.

People who don't care about continuity of events aren't going to be stopped by timeline dates anyway. There's no point in keeping it vague.

I give his response a full-on Captain Picard double facepalm.

Plaguescarred Posted - 12 Mar 2014 : 21:38:49
Matt Sernett finally gave a date approximation of 1484-1487 DR while mentioning they intentionally remained vague;

@Sernett Short Answer: We are intentionally vague so people don't limit their play experiences because of a fictional calendar.
@Sernett That said, given the period, it's most comfortable spot in the timeline is somewhere within the period of 1484 to 1487.


Thanks Matt!
Mapolq Posted - 12 Mar 2014 : 21:04:57
I'm just hoping he was "curious" because, due to his job description, he should probably care about people's thoughts on continuity and dating issues.

I'm... not really holding my breath given WotC's record though.
Wooly Rupert Posted - 12 Mar 2014 : 20:14:06
quote:
Originally posted by Brian R. James

quote:
Originally posted by Plaguescarred

@Sernett Curious: Why is a specific year important to you?
This question, coming from Matt Sernett (the official Realms continuity guy at WotC), concerns me greatly.



Wait, we have one of those again?
Gary Dallison Posted - 12 Mar 2014 : 19:19:36
Sounds like this is their method of making everything edition neutral. By not putting a date on events you can supposedly place it anywhere and it will be useful to everyone. Of course it will have the opposite effect and be useful to no one.

I will probably still buy them though on the off chance they have hidden gems of historic lore in them.
Eilserus Posted - 12 Mar 2014 : 18:55:24
*Slams head down on desk*

Oh boy. :(
Mournblade Posted - 12 Mar 2014 : 18:54:54
Many thanks to Plaguescarred!

Sure it didn't answer my question, but it was insightful and I appreciate the effort.

I am setting it After the Reaver. The odd thing is that Legacy of the Crystal Shard was extraordinarily specific on time.

Like Brian James I find Sarnett's response a little troubling. For a world with a great book like Grand History of the Realms a general if not a specific time is warranted.

Why is time important? Because those of us that like to follow canon loosely like to know "What else is going on in the world."

Or I want to play a priest of Mask or Nobanion! Knowing that date would be helpful.

I know that we can insert any of our campaigns anywhere, but speaking for myself, I like to play in the realms as microcontributer to the Grand story. I like MY realms to mirror the Published realms. The dates are important to us that respect continuity and want to know Where and When are characters are doing WHAT.

Brian R. James Posted - 12 Mar 2014 : 18:22:36
quote:
Originally posted by Plaguescarred

@Sernett Curious: Why is a specific year important to you?
This question, coming from Matt Sernett (the official Realms continuity guy at WotC), concerns me greatly.
Plaguescarred Posted - 12 Mar 2014 : 17:39:04
Here are the replies i got on twitter so far;

@Plaguescarred Hey guys, quick Q What year are events in Scourge of the Sword Coast, 1486 DR?
@Sernett The product does not specifically say, but it does presume it is set after Ghosts of Dragonspear Castle.
@Plaguescarred Thanks Matt, unfortunatly Ghosts of Dragonspear Castle also doesn't seem to provide any year. Any idea?
@Sernett I'll have to check when I get back to work. Curious: Why is a specific year important to you?
@Plaguescarred Like Alison said, prolly for Cannon continuity and to have a sense of where it situate in the timeline
@Plaguescarred I'd appreciate. Its for a sage on Candlekeep #Canon http://forum.candlekeep.com/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=18991
@ChrisSSims I, unfortunately for us, don't know.
@Plaguescarred Ok thanks
@shawnmerwin A long time ago, in a Realms far, far away. Works every time!
@Plaguescarred Well its not a long time ago if its suppposed to be in the current Sundering era hence why people are asking.
@Sernett In that particular case, I know the answer. Salvatore's novels are still catching up to the "current year." So no.

Candlekeep Forum © 1999-2020 Candlekeep.com Go To Top Of Page
Snitz Forums 2000