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 Ed Greenwood Presents: Waterdeep
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
30431 Posts

Posted - 19 Nov 2013 :  19:14:40  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I felt Waterdeep was darker and grimmer -- tarnished and lacking the luster that made it shine in the past. It simply didn't have the vibrant feel of past eras.

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Erik Scott de Bie
Forgotten Realms Author

USA
4586 Posts

Posted - 20 Nov 2013 :  04:23:03  Show Profile  Visit Erik Scott de Bie's Homepage  Send Erik Scott de Bie an AOL message Send Erik Scott de Bie a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

I felt Waterdeep was darker and grimmer -- tarnished and lacking the luster that made it shine in the past. It simply didn't have the vibrant feel of past eras.
And far be it for me to contradict your opinion. My point is simply that it really depends how you look at it. Someone else reading these books might not feel that way at all.

I'll freely admit that a lot of DOWNSHADOW is pretty dark, but a lot is very celebratory and glitzy as well.

Cheers

Erik Scott de Bie

'Tis easier to destroy than to create.

Signature of Shameless Self-Promotion +6: Order my sixth novel, Shadow of the Winter King (Amazon, e-signing, Dragonmoon Press)

Also check out my Realms work, most recently Shadowbane: Eye of Justice, out now on e-readers everywhere! (Kindle, Nook)
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Tarlyn
Learned Scribe

USA
304 Posts

Posted - 20 Nov 2013 :  04:59:38  Show Profile Send Tarlyn a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

I felt Waterdeep was darker and grimmer -- tarnished and lacking the luster that made it shine in the past. It simply didn't have the vibrant feel of past eras.


To be fair, Waterdeep could be replaced with any location in FR for 4e and the statement would be true. It is just the tone of the 1400s in general.

Tarlyn Embersun

Edited by - Tarlyn on 20 Nov 2013 05:00:21
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Azuth
Senior Scribe

USA
402 Posts

Posted - 21 Nov 2013 :  05:16:27  Show Profile  Visit Azuth's Homepage Send Azuth a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I agree with Erik's take on this, too. I struggle for the right adjective, but Erik writes differently than does Ed, which is to be expected. Ed describes the seedier parts of the Realms in a different way, but they're still there. Certain authors past in both the 2E/3E worlds (whom I shall not name) I felt wrote terribly of the Realms. But there are many great authors out there to keep up the torch of Faerūn, and I count Erik amongst them.


quote:
Originally posted by Tarlyn


To be fair, Waterdeep could be replaced with any location in FR for 4e and the statement would be true. It is just the tone of the 1400s in general.


Azuth, the First Magister
Lord of All Spells

The greatest expression of creativity is through Art.
Offense can never be given, only taken.
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Tarlyn
Learned Scribe

USA
304 Posts

Posted - 21 Nov 2013 :  05:54:51  Show Profile Send Tarlyn a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Azuth
I agree with Erik's take on this, too. I struggle for the right adjective, but Erik writes differently than does Ed, which is to be expected. Ed describes the seedier parts of the Realms in a different way, but they're still there. Certain authors past in both the 2E/3E worlds (whom I shall not name) I felt wrote terribly of the Realms. But there are many great authors out there to keep up the torch of Faerūn, and I count Erik amongst them.



Everywhere is grimmer, seedier, darker than it was. There were dark place in 2ed/3ed for sure, but that didn't describe virtually every location you visited in those editions. I just finished Brimstone angels and Neverwinter is definitively darker than before. It isn't bad, but that is the way the new realms are. Complaining about them being dark is like complaining that a slasher movie has a lot of murder in it. The new realms has a darker tone end of story. It isn't necessarily bad(although I personally don't care for it) it just is the tone of the setting.

Tarlyn Embersun
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
30431 Posts

Posted - 21 Nov 2013 :  11:00:54  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Tarlyn

Complaining about them being dark is like complaining that a slasher movie has a lot of murder in it. The new realms has a darker tone end of story. It isn't necessarily bad(although I personally don't care for it) it just is the tone of the setting.



I disagree with that analogy. One walks into a slasher flick expecting a lot of murder. One does not, on the other hand, expect an animated Disney movie to suddenly become a slasher flick three-quarters of the way thru the movie.

The tone of the setting changed. For 20 years it was not dark and grim -- so complaining when it suddenly acquires that feel is quite valid.

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Tarlyn
Learned Scribe

USA
304 Posts

Posted - 21 Nov 2013 :  15:57:18  Show Profile Send Tarlyn a Private Message  Reply with Quote
We have all been dealing with it for four years though, it shouldn't really come as a shock at this point. It has become the norm for a modern FR novel. Even the new Elminster series was pretty dark and gloomy. A piece like say the Companions stands out because it has a much more upbeat tone.

Also, Brimstone angels is a fantastic piece in case anyone got the impression from my previous post that I didn't like it. The realms is different in it, but I did really enjoy the cast of characters. Also, if you are a big fan of the various secret societies in FR both Brimstone angels and Lesser evils feature a lot of new ones and old favorites(Although the old ones are considerably less influential and power than they were in the past).

Tarlyn Embersun

Edited by - Tarlyn on 21 Nov 2013 20:16:12
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
30431 Posts

Posted - 21 Nov 2013 :  17:08:05  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Tarlyn

We have all been dealing with it for four years though, it shouldn't really come as a shock at this point. It has become the norm for a modern FR novel. Even the new Elminster series was pretty dark and gloomy. A piece like say the Companions stands out because it has an much more upbeat tone.




I'm not saying it was a shock. Both the novels I read, I read right when they came out. And the feel was different enough to impact my enjoyment of the stories.

When you've enjoyed a setting having a particular feel for 20 years, even if you know it's going to be different, that doesn't mean you're automatically going to enjoy (or dislike) an alternate feel for the same setting. It is, though, quite reasonable to object to it being quite different.

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Candlekeep - The Library of Forgotten Realms Lore
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Erik Scott de Bie
Forgotten Realms Author

USA
4586 Posts

Posted - 22 Nov 2013 :  16:07:24  Show Profile  Visit Erik Scott de Bie's Homepage  Send Erik Scott de Bie an AOL message Send Erik Scott de Bie a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Fair enough, Wooly. It is reasonable, indeed.

I wonder how much of that is the Realms, how much of that is the authors, and how much of that is the trend in fantasy fiction over the last few years.

The Realms was dark in 3e (Sembia, War of the Spider Queen, etc), and WotC really emphasized the dark transition of the Realms into a new, less stable place in 4e. The Transitions series was mandated to be dark, pretty much, because Bob had the choice either to kill off many of his beloved characters or let them die in the time-jump, and he chose to kill them. Not an easy thing, and and with such build up and emotional investment in his heroes, it's going to be pretty damn dark to see them die. His book in the Sundering is a movement against that, back to a place of magic that the Realms had before the jump, and to hear him talk about it, that's very purposeful.

Don't forget that we're looking at a few dark fantasy writers, too. For instance, Paul Kemp, Jaleigh Johnson, and I tend to write dark sorts of stories. Part of that is just the fantasy we like to write--dealing with deep, powerful, dramatic issues and shades-of-gray characters and plots. James Davis cut his teeth writing horror, and it's no surprise his stuff is pretty dark. I don't want to pigeonhole any of us--obviously, all of us can write non-dark stuff as well--it's just that our styles often tend toward a darker setting.

And it's undeniable that dark fantasy has been on the rise for over a decade now. Gray characters, dark plots, a little touch of horror, settings that are a bit tarnished--that's all what's going on in the fantasy genre these days. Personally, I think it was always there in the Realms--Azure Bonds and its heroine with her dark past, the Pools series with its underlying dark plots and heroic sacrifice, a lot of Sembia, the entire War of the Spider Queen--and my work is meant to honor that aspect.

Cheers

Erik Scott de Bie

'Tis easier to destroy than to create.

Signature of Shameless Self-Promotion +6: Order my sixth novel, Shadow of the Winter King (Amazon, e-signing, Dragonmoon Press)

Also check out my Realms work, most recently Shadowbane: Eye of Justice, out now on e-readers everywhere! (Kindle, Nook)
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Tanthalas
Senior Scribe

Portugal
483 Posts

Posted - 26 Nov 2013 :  01:20:30  Show Profile Send Tanthalas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I'd say even the very first Forgotten Realms trilogy had a dark side to it.

Though I'd have to disagree that all 4E books were "dark". City of the Dead (a fantastic book by the way) was pretty light-hearted and upbeat. It certainly didn't portray Waterdeep as a dark city even though the plot revolved around the cemetery of Waterdeep.

Sir Markham pointed out, drinking another brandy. "A chap who can point at you and say 'die' has the distinct advantage".
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The Arcanamach
Master of Realmslore

1589 Posts

Posted - 17 Dec 2013 :  15:52:14  Show Profile Send The Arcanamach a Private Message  Reply with Quote
All of them.

I have a dream that one day, all game worlds will exist as one.
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