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Razz
Senior Scribe

USA
718 Posts

Posted - 13 Nov 2018 :  14:04:22  Show Profile  Visit Razz's Homepage  Send Razz an AOL message Send Razz a Private Message  Reply with Quote  Delete Topic
Been a long time since I posted (hectic life events and all) but I wanted to share some thoughts on the current Forgotten Realms setting and how WotC is writing it.

I feel like it is getting stagnant. Too stagnant. It’s such a wide and diverse setting, yet we constantly deal with the same rehash over and over. Did we really need more Waterdeep? More Undermountain again?

Granted I give them kudos on using Tomb of Annilihation with Chult. Although I wish there was much more Chult lore than there was the adventure, it was a good start.

I just wish for more adventures taking place in newer places. An adventure set in Sossal, for example, giving both setting lore and an adventure. Or something in Mulhorand? The Golden Waters? Heck even the Hordelands?

I try to look at it from a marketing point of view, but I fail to see what the fear is? Fans will not have issues with another part of the Realms being explored, and new customers wouldn’t be bothered either. Where exactly is the disconnect?

Is anyone else burnt out on the “same ol’ Realms” over and over again? I mean I get the setting is ironically called the “FORGOTTEN Realms” but I did not expect for WotC to continue to take that literally.

I would like to see the Realms diversity and evolve more. Do not fans and designers feel the same way, and why not if so?

dazzlerdal
Great Reader

United Kingdom
4207 Posts

Posted - 13 Nov 2018 :  15:40:26  Show Profile Send dazzlerdal a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I think it's time for my annual vent.

I tried of the current realms long ago. If I want lore or adventures in the realms I only want them in the 14th century DR, anything else just isn't interesting or realmsian.

Most companies are risk averse, wotc/Hasbro seem to be risk allergic. They are rehashing previously popular releases with a new skin on them. It's like the endless remake culture of films, why try and do anything new when you can remake something that was popular 30 years ago and most of the work has already been dome for you.

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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
31636 Posts

Posted - 13 Nov 2018 :  15:40:55  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
It's the bean counter mentality: Stick with the proven sellers. That means more Sword Coast, more drow, and more boom.

I just thank Lurue that they've finally gotten off of their "shadows are kewl!" kick.

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Lord Karsus
Great Reader

USA
3199 Posts

Posted - 13 Nov 2018 :  16:11:32  Show Profile  Send Lord Karsus an AOL message Send Lord Karsus a Private Message  Reply with Quote
-Agreed but, I understand the logic. They don't publish like the 2e/3e era anymore. If there's only say 2 sourcebooks and a handful of web articles released a year, you gotta dedicate those products to "the basics", especially when the world has changed considerably yet again as compared to the 4e status quo.

-I'm sure that the various authors and designers would love to explore all different kinds of things if they had carte blanche to write/design whatever they wanted, but hey.

(A Tri-Partite Arcanist Who Has Forgotten More Than Most Will Ever Know)

Elves of Faerûn
Vol I- The Elves of Faerûn
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Vol. VI- Mechanical Compendium

Edited by - Lord Karsus on 13 Nov 2018 16:12:58
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bloodtide_the_red
Seeker

USA
69 Posts

Posted - 14 Nov 2018 :  02:18:44  Show Profile  Visit bloodtide_the_red's Homepage Send bloodtide_the_red a Private Message  Reply with Quote
It's not really anything new. The Realms has always had this focus problem. It really goes back to the start, where the huge focus was on a couple favored and favorite places...and everything else was mostly background. So you got tons of stuff about the writers favorite place but the rest was like a line or two.

By the mid '90's we got explosion of new writers going all over the map. And then by 2000 right back to the couple of writer favorite places again. And it has not changed from then.
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TBeholder
Master of Realmslore

1747 Posts

Posted - 14 Nov 2018 :  04:58:29  Show Profile Send TBeholder a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

It's the bean counter mentality: Stick with the proven sellers. That means more Sword Coast, more drow, and more boom.

Bean counter mentality explains "hurr, need moar Drizzt".
It doesn't explain yet another burn-loot-and-run reboot, since randomly setting things on their ears is the opposite of sticking to what sells.

quote:
I just thank Lurue that they've finally gotten off of their "shadows are kewl!" kick.

I suspect it was someone's fetish, or at least obsession. Like those spiky chains.

People never wonder How the world goes round -Helloween
And even I make no pretense Of having more than common sense -R.W.Wood
It's not good, Eric. It's a gazebo. -Ed Whitchurch
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Storyteller Hero
Learned Scribe

USA
135 Posts

Posted - 14 Nov 2018 :  06:38:10  Show Profile  Visit Storyteller Hero's Homepage Send Storyteller Hero a Private Message  Reply with Quote
There's always the Dungeon Masters Guild site.

There aren't a huge number of lore writers like me posting new (non-canon) lore additions for the setting, but we do exist, and I figure at least some of us are expanding the lore in directions that people will enjoy and can smoothly incorporate into their campaigns.

I can only hope that the complete edition of my Realmspace book will be met with positive opinions.

5e spelljamming rules playtest for the book starts next week!




My Blog: https://www.facebook.com/Johnnys-Tabletop-RPG-Design-Blog-1697026710539149/?ref=aymt_homepage_panel

My DMG Shop: http://www.dmsguild.com/browse.php?x=0&y=0&author=Johnny%20Tek

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George Krashos
Master of Realmslore

Australia
5339 Posts

Posted - 14 Nov 2018 :  06:44:38  Show Profile Send George Krashos a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Well, fandom is fickle and I don't think WotC have any wiggle room financially to indulge the small segment of the fanbase who would devour a Sossal adventure. They branched out to Chult in my view only because they used the back-up draw power of Acererak hoping for some cross-fanbase appeal. I don't have an issue with them using the core areas of the Realms. I have an issue with the trope-cycle (drow/dragons/demons/giants/gods) but hey, that might be just me.

-- George Krashos

"Because only we, contrary to the barbarians, never count the enemy in battle." -- Aeschylus
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sleyvas
Great Reader

USA
7593 Posts

Posted - 14 Nov 2018 :  15:44:11  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by George Krashos

Well, fandom is fickle and I don't think WotC have any wiggle room financially to indulge the small segment of the fanbase who would devour a Sossal adventure. They branched out to Chult in my view only because they used the back-up draw power of Acererak hoping for some cross-fanbase appeal. I don't have an issue with them using the core areas of the Realms. I have an issue with the trope-cycle (drow/dragons/demons/giants/gods) but hey, that might be just me.

-- George Krashos



I also feel like the fact that a lot of us over here on this site were talking about Maztica and jungles and Ubtao and his links to Quotal, etc... had something to do with Chult. I feel like they listened to some of what we were talking about and used it elsewhere (which is fine).

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas
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sleyvas
Great Reader

USA
7593 Posts

Posted - 14 Nov 2018 :  16:07:58  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Storyteller Hero

There's always the Dungeon Masters Guild site.

There aren't a huge number of lore writers like me posting new (non-canon) lore additions for the setting, but we do exist, and I figure at least some of us are expanding the lore in directions that people will enjoy and can smoothly incorporate into their campaigns.

I can only hope that the complete edition of my Realmspace book will be met with positive opinions.

5e spelljamming rules playtest for the book starts next week!




Make sure to post links to your stuff. I'm intrigued, as I've been interested in spelljamming specifically around Quads of Thay, Kara-Tur & Wa (and their unique ships), Nimbral, Selune and the Tears. I've posted some of it here how I would change out the population of Selune with hints to how people have misunderstood the current population.

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas
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CorellonsDevout
Great Reader

USA
2269 Posts

Posted - 14 Nov 2018 :  19:38:35  Show Profile  Send CorellonsDevout an AOL message Send CorellonsDevout a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I remember how excited I was when there was talk of 5e. I have never been to GenCon, but I remember watching some of the panels on youtube from the...I believe it was the 2012 con. They were talking about the Sundering, restoring the pantheon, and bringing back the "old Realms", while continuing to move the timeline forward.

Then the Sundering books came out, and...that was it. Sure, they were good, but there had been all this hype surrounding 5e, but the actual release was...subpar. We got the SCAG, and some adventures, but it was nothing like it used to be.

Sweet water and light laughter
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Wenin
Senior Scribe

549 Posts

Posted - 14 Nov 2018 :  21:38:10  Show Profile Send Wenin a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I like a lot of what they've put out. The only sour note that I can recall is Hoard of the Dragon Queen. It wasn't as polished as it should have been. If they remade it using the same design approach as Waterdeep Dragon Heist, half of it would have been the adventure with the other half being a regional sourcebook.

The Rise of Tiamat release was a step better.


Session Reports posted at RPG Geek.
Stem the Tide Takes place in Mistledale.
Dark Curtains - Takes place in the Savage North, starting in Nesmé. I wrapped my campaign into the Hoard of the Dragon Queen, but it takes place in 1372 DR.
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Gyor
Master of Realmslore

1316 Posts

Posted - 15 Nov 2018 :  00:14:45  Show Profile Send Gyor a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Partners of WotC have released two PDF regional settings guides, one written by Ed and the other one with a Forward by Nile Douglas.

The one Ed wrote is on the Border Kingdoms and it's awesome and the other one is in the Moonshaes. And both companies as I understand it plan on releasing adventures for them. And rumour has it a possible hard cover release.

And I now have both Waterdeep books, and together they are awesome, seriously they are practically a mini setting of there own. Plus they are designed to be expanded upon by DMs and DMSGUILD.

Still while these books are awesome its time to explore the rest of the realms.

Parts of the realms that deserve explporing, the Old Empires Region, Kara Tur, Zakhara, Sea of Fallen Stars region as a whole, the Unapproachable East, Lands of Intrigue, the Cold Lands,Turmish, Katashaka, Osse, Garden (the giant space plant/world), the Celestial Nadir, Abeir, Brightwater (which I think is back on Aborea this edition, but that is just a guess), the Shining Planes.
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CorellonsDevout
Great Reader

USA
2269 Posts

Posted - 15 Nov 2018 :  00:47:53  Show Profile  Send CorellonsDevout an AOL message Send CorellonsDevout a Private Message  Reply with Quote
There's been some good stuff, it's just not as...it's not what it was. And I'm of the younger generation, but I like the ol' Realms. Well, anything before 4e, anyway.

Sweet water and light laughter
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George Krashos
Master of Realmslore

Australia
5339 Posts

Posted - 15 Nov 2018 :  05:02:21  Show Profile Send George Krashos a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I have dreams of doing a twin release on Impiltur, the first set right on the cusp of the new king's ascension in the 1370s DR and the other updating the kingdom to the 1480s DR to one day be released on the DMs Guild. It's still far, far away but I am looking to find people to do FRA style city maps atm for the various cities. One day.

-- George Krashos

"Because only we, contrary to the barbarians, never count the enemy in battle." -- Aeschylus
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Razz
Senior Scribe

USA
718 Posts

Posted - 15 Nov 2018 :  14:37:31  Show Profile  Visit Razz's Homepage  Send Razz an AOL message Send Razz a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by bloodtide_the_red


By the mid '90's we got explosion of new writers going all over the map. And then by 2000 right back to the couple of writer favorite places again. And it has not changed from then.



I wish THAT Realms came back again. That explosion of setting material for places all over the Realms was the "Golden Age" of the FR Setting for me. It had its flaws (Maztica and Kara-Tur being way too strongly based on real life parallels instead of forming their own unique, yet real-world flavored, cultures), but I welcomed the diversity of what the Realms designers were offering.

Ever since Silver Marches, which I thought was one of their best products in 3e, we haven't got the Realms we deserve and need.
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Brimstone
Great Reader

USA
3031 Posts

Posted - 15 Nov 2018 :  15:12:22  Show Profile Send Brimstone a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Sounds awesome George!

"These things also I have observed: that knowledge of our world is
to be nurtured like a precious flower, for it is the most precious
thing we have. Wherefore guard the word written and heed
words unwritten and set them down ere they fade . . . Learn
then, well, the arts of reading, writing, and listening true, and they
will lead you to the greatest art of all: understanding."
Alaundo of Candlekeep
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John Daker
Acolyte

USA
14 Posts

Posted - 16 Nov 2018 :  12:58:46  Show Profile Send John Daker a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Gyor
And rumour has it a possible hard cover release.



That's music to my ears -- any more details you can share about this rumor, or where it came from?
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Cards77
Senior Scribe

USA
608 Posts

Posted - 16 Nov 2018 :  22:10:24  Show Profile Send Cards77 a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Razz

quote:
Originally posted by bloodtide_the_red


By the mid '90's we got explosion of new writers going all over the map. And then by 2000 right back to the couple of writer favorite places again. And it has not changed from then.



I wish THAT Realms came back again. That explosion of setting material for places all over the Realms was the "Golden Age" of the FR Setting for me. It had its flaws (Maztica and Kara-Tur being way too strongly based on real life parallels instead of forming their own unique, yet real-world flavored, cultures), but I welcomed the diversity of what the Realms designers were offering.

Ever since Silver Marches, which I thought was one of their best products in 3e, we haven't got the Realms we deserve and need.



Well said exactly. They, along with all the other media culture has really dumbed down both the product and the consumer.

They are all catering to the lowest common denominator. The trope cycle is very much the way now as George alluded to.

ALL of it has been diluted and simplified: the game system, the setting, the adventures, the lore etc.

The richness is gone out of the setting. The crunchy bits have essentially been taken out and no longer fit with the later systems/editions.

My biggest lament is that there may be new fan created content for the "old" Realms, but it's usually not compatible with older systems.

The most popular stories and heroes have been killed, brought back to life, rehashed and over stayed their welcome.

While the rest of it was hand waved away.

This isn't what the Realms is about (to me anyway).
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Varl
Learned Scribe

USA
264 Posts

Posted - 22 Nov 2018 :  01:19:01  Show Profile Send Varl a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Razz
I would like to see the Realms diversity and evolve more. Do not fans and designers feel the same way, and why not if so?




Yeah, I do a bit, but then again, I've not collected Realms material since 2e. That said, I've always wondered myself why known areas like Sossal, Luiren, Dambrath and many others (particularly down south, southeast and east) were given so little love. I always attributed it to intentionally left mostly undeveloped to give us DM's new places to develop on our own and place things unique to each DM.

Ironically, some say the reason was they stuck with what sells(sold), but I can tell you I'd be the first person buying Realms content for regions left fallow in the hot, mid-day sun.

"Intimidation is a weapon of the Legion. Intelligence is not." -Illidan Stormrage
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TomCosta
Forgotten Realms Designer

USA
588 Posts

Posted - 23 Nov 2018 :  13:50:14  Show Profile Send TomCosta a Private Message  Reply with Quote
George, you should totally put out a full blown Impiltur book.
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George Krashos
Master of Realmslore

Australia
5339 Posts

Posted - 24 Nov 2018 :  04:40:46  Show Profile Send George Krashos a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by TomCosta

George, you should totally put out a full blown Impiltur book.



Before I do Tom, you'll get a look at it, never fear. Your editorial input will be most welcome. I've started taking small steps toward such a product. Commissioned a city map the other day which looks gorgeous despite still needing a few small tweaks. I reason that if I'm going to do it, I might as well do it properly. If I lose dollars on the deal down the track, well c'est la Realms.

-- George Krashos

"Because only we, contrary to the barbarians, never count the enemy in battle." -- Aeschylus
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Brimstone
Great Reader

USA
3031 Posts

Posted - 24 Nov 2018 :  20:55:37  Show Profile Send Brimstone a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I will buy a copy, when it becomes available...

"These things also I have observed: that knowledge of our world is
to be nurtured like a precious flower, for it is the most precious
thing we have. Wherefore guard the word written and heed
words unwritten and set them down ere they fade . . . Learn
then, well, the arts of reading, writing, and listening true, and they
will lead you to the greatest art of all: understanding."
Alaundo of Candlekeep
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George Krashos
Master of Realmslore

Australia
5339 Posts

Posted - 25 Nov 2018 :  02:17:26  Show Profile Send George Krashos a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Brimstone

I will buy a copy, when it becomes available...



Not to get everyone excited but such a product is likely a couple of years away. I’m putting stuff together incrementally, but there is still a long way to go.

— George Krashos

"Because only we, contrary to the barbarians, never count the enemy in battle." -- Aeschylus
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
31636 Posts

Posted - 25 Nov 2018 :  04:10:40  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by George Krashos

quote:
Originally posted by Brimstone

I will buy a copy, when it becomes available...



Not to get everyone excited but such a product is likely a couple of years away. I’m putting stuff together incrementally, but there is still a long way to go.

— George Krashos



It will be worth the wait, I'm sure.

Candlekeep Forums Moderator

Candlekeep - The Library of Forgotten Realms Lore
http://www.candlekeep.com
-- Candlekeep Forum Code of Conduct

Editor and scribe for The Candlekeep Compendium

I am the Giant Space Hamster of Ill Omen!
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Dargoth
Great Reader

Australia
4598 Posts

Posted - 25 Nov 2018 :  07:37:48  Show Profile  Visit Dargoth's Homepage Send Dargoth a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Personally Id like to see them do a mixture of Full detail source books and adventures sprinkle them around the world. For example I would have done a full Detailed Book for the area around Baldurs gates which would have been heavy on detail of "what is" but light on adventure content Hooks but no Module style content.

Then attached to that you'd get the other style of FR Book the module which gives a brief overview on an area neigbouring the other source book which Tomb of annihalation does where the module starts in Baldurs Gate.

So say Full source book for Cormyr and lighter Module source books for Sembia, The Dragon Coast and The Dale Lands with them all starting with Cormyrian start ups for the adevnetures.

“I am the King of Rome, and above grammar”

Emperor Sigismund

"Its good to be the King!"

Mel Brooks
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