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    Canonfire :: View topic - The Many Heads of WOTC
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    The Many Heads of WOTC
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    Apprentice Greytalker

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    Fri Apr 15, 2005 8:06 am  
    The Many Heads of WOTC

    I don't know if many of you post on the Greyhawk board or peruse the WotC boards in general but after reading through the threads regarding Charles Ryan's comments I am somewhat flabergasted.

    I kinda feel sorry for Erik Mona really. I know that Paizo has kinda been leading the way for Greyhawk in many ways but I am now understanding why the new Adventure Path was curbed back from what it once entailed for Greyhawk.

    Its kinda sad really. Certainly doesn't bode well for my subscription staying current with Dungeon.
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    Fri Apr 15, 2005 11:47 am  

    Speaking of which I had been thinking alot about the following comment made by Mr. Ryan;

    Quote:
    Greyhawk has a special strategic place in the D&D universe--it's the source of all the IP content in core D&D (the names of gods, spells, and other elements that aren't strictly rules material). Even in a tightly-controlled license, we're not willing to cede control of that material to an outside party.


    Sounds like WoTC doesn't wanna play Mr. Gygax whilst the liscensee (or "outside party") plays Mrs. Lorraine Williams and/or TSR.

    hmm...
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    Fri Apr 15, 2005 11:54 am  

    TJ just what in the Nine Hells are you doing posting on this forum, get back in the basement and work on a certain project that you have been "neglecting". Mad

    Sorry for hijacking this thread Confused but seeing TJ swanning around like he doesn't have a care in the world makes me mad Wink
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    Fri Apr 15, 2005 11:59 am  

    I also find it amazing that nobody thinks this comes from a personal bias. Just as many people on this site grew up playing Greyhawk, I would guess that the majority of decision makers involved in devoloping product lines have a special place in their hearts for the Forgotten Realms at WotC.

    I know from reading Prison Mail in Dungeon and other posts like those at their boards, it seems like WotC has/is/was putting pressure on Paizo not only to scale back Greyhawk content but to push more Eberron and FR. I just find it hard to believe it all boils down to Marketing and Finances.

    Oh well, its not like I can buy less FR and Eberron related books than I already do. (zero)
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    Fri Apr 15, 2005 1:39 pm  

    I think Wotc is pushing Eberron and FR off on Dungeon and Dragon. If Erik and Lisa were not Greyhawkers, and if Greyhawk didn't have the unfortunate (to Wotc) habit of selling issues, it would be Elminster The Warforged Mage 24/7.

    I will say something that I hope no one will take the wrong way. IMO, as long as Gary Gygax is alive Wotc will not take Greyhawk seriously again. Ever. EGG casts a long shadow both personally and professionally that Wotc does not care to have to deal with. Once EGG is dead, Wotc will likely lionize him as the Father of the Game and that may include a Greyhawk tribute and maybe a new life for the setting.

    I do not think this attitude is entirely unjustified on Wotc's part. While I think they are small minded to a degree, I think EGG is equally to blame for Wotc's perception of Greyhawk.

    Gary Gygax is owed an infinite debt for his role in developing the game. For that, he could be everybody's Uncle Gary, loveable and beloved. Instead, he is egotistical, self-righteous and prickly unless you genuflect before, during and after dealing with him. Yeah, he got a raw deal once upon a time, but he should have gotten over that when Wotc took care of him before it was bought by Hasbro. Gary is a jerk and too many of his most fervrent fans (not Greyhawk fans but Gygax fans) are jerks. I can't entirely blame Woc for not wanting to get near Greyhawk as long as this shadow haunts Greyhawk. Its a shame all the way around.
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    Fri Apr 15, 2005 1:47 pm  

    Quote:
    I think Wotc is pushing Eberron and FR off on Dungeon and Dragon. If Erik and Lisa were not Greyhawkers, and if Greyhawk didn't have the unfortunate (to Wotc) habit of selling issues, it would be Elminster The Warforged Mage 24/7.
    The way the magazine business is I think we'll have a chance at finding this out before your theory on the lionizing of Gygax. Everyone should just be glad that the powers that be can't rid D&D of the Greyhawk presence no matter how much they try to push it away or white wash over it with a new setting. It always bounces back.
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    Fri Apr 15, 2005 1:59 pm  

    Jump right in with both feet and splash water every where Laughing Laughing Dont know if I said it when you joined but welcome to the boards... You must keep GVD completely in line Laughing ...




    Quote:
    I do not think this attitude is entirely unjustified on Wotc's part. While I think they are small minded to a degree, I think EGG is equally to blame for Wotc's perception of Greyhawk.

    Gary Gygax is owed an infinite debt for his role in developing the game. For that, he could be everybody's Uncle Gary, loveable and beloved. Instead, he is egotistical, self-righteous and prickly unless you genuflect before, during and after dealing with him. Yeah, he got a raw deal once upon a time, but he should have gotten over that when Wotc took care of him before it was bought by Hasbro. Gary is a jerk and too many of his most fervrent fans (not Greyhawk fans but Gygax fans) are jerks. I can't entirely blame Woc for not wanting to get near Greyhawk as long as this shadow haunts Greyhawk. Its a shame all the way around.


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    Fri Apr 15, 2005 5:18 pm  

    the problem is just how specious the content of that quote is.
    All those names in Core D&D can be changed merely with a new edition of the rules. As that is due to happen some time in 2006 or 2007, all of those names of deities, locations, and items can be stripped out with no impact upon the core rules in the slightest. Indeed, stripping many of them will actually be beneficial to certain design elements. Stipping the names from the spells, as was done in several cases in the Basic-Immortal D&D line, while more extensive, is equally irrelevant to the content of the rules.
    And, although I didn't press him on it on the WotC boards, he very distinctly ducked the question of whether WotC would do just that when I asked him. Now it could have been because he didn't want to acknowledge that they are indeed working on the next edition at the moment. It can also be he didn't want to deal with the issue of people knowing how easy it would be to free Greyhawk up for licensing. If so, then I fear for the quality of coming products. When TSR starting blowing smoke up nether passages about similar issues they started their nose dive of hack supplements flooding the shelves, with the few decent quality products packaged so poorly they lost money anyway.
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    Fri Apr 15, 2005 10:02 pm  

    Yup, there's nothing that requires Disjunction to be "Mordenkainen's" or Acid Arrow to be "Melf's". Easy to fix that if its somehow a crisis of IP. And all the GH gods only became "core" with 3e, so there is not really any reason why they can't stop mutilating them in a 4e.

    As for EGG, he's certainly opinionated, but I've never found him to require any genuflecting or to be much of a jerk overall. Everyone has their moments, of course. But if WotC is refusing to push GH because of Gary (which I doubt), they are pretty off base. The guy goes out of his way NOT to comment on any GH material that's post 1985 from what I've seen. And while he has his enmities, they are for other long gone folks from the mid 80s.

    Anyway, I don't want to get into a discussion of a guy I barely know. Particularly since I think its entirely off the topic here. TSR and WotC have produced a lot of GH material post 1985. In fact, I am pretty sure there is more post Gygax GH material than pre Gygax by a considerable margin.

    WotC wants to try to centralize their target audience, so they can sell one sourcebook to everyone instead of having to produce books that each sell to only a fraction of their customers. I don't know the numbers to say if that's a good business plan or a lousy one. I do think it makes little sense to sit on material if you could make money licensing it instead.
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    Sat Apr 16, 2005 6:22 am  

    Okay, so I usually keep to these forums instead of those on the Wizards site. Would somebody gimme a link please? I poked around and couldn't find what yer referencing.

    Vormaerin, my only complaint is that this "dividing of the fan base" rationale was being stated prior to Eberron. So how did developing this setting not divide the fan base?
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    Sat Apr 16, 2005 6:28 am  

    Vormaerin wrote:

    WotC wants to try to centralize their target audience, so they can sell one sourcebook to everyone instead of having to produce books that each sell to only a fraction of their customers. I don't know the numbers to say if that's a good business plan or a lousy one. I do think it makes little sense to sit on material if you could make money licensing it instead.


    I completely agree with this. Which simply beggars the question if you want to centralize your audience why do a campaign search and then publish one that is so far out that it is almost guaranteed to only appeal to a select few D&D players. Perhaps they overestimated what drives new players to the game. In my opinion what drives new players to a game is something relatively vanilla, you only get to the wild flavors once you dive in a little bit.

    Using that analogy your high fantasy setting FR is like rocky road combined with tin roof sundae and your new setting Eberron is like rainbow sherbert with a combined 60 fruity flavors.

    Of course being a huge Greyhawk fan I believe the setting is a perfect balance of inviting to newbies but as complex as you want it to be for us long time gamers who want to dig into the minutiae.

    In many ways I am glad they didn't give the Eberron treatment to Greyhawk (actually thinking about it makes me think it is the best decision WotC could have made) but this almost spoiled child like attitude that they seem to have about Greyhawk (not in MY Dungeon magazine) really pisses me off.
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    Sat Apr 16, 2005 8:17 am  

    Frankly, I'm not sure what the point of developing Eberron was, unless they felt like they've overdeveloped the FR to the point that it isn't a viable source of future sourcebooks. Or their left hand isn't talking to their right hand.
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    Sat Apr 16, 2005 8:38 am  

    http://boards1.wizards.com/showthread.php?t=399440

    http://boards1.wizards.com/showthread.php?t=395908

    Those are the two relevant threads.
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    Sat Apr 16, 2005 5:17 pm  

    Maraudar wrote:
    You must keep GVD completely in line Laughing ...
    maraudar


    No comment Wink
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    Sat Apr 16, 2005 5:32 pm  

    Samwise wrote:
    All those names in Core D&D can be changed merely with a new edition of the rules. As that is due to happen some time in 2006 or 2007, all of those names of deities, locations, and items can be stripped out with no impact upon the core rules in the slightest.


    I hope Sam's right. I'm betting 2008, but what's a year?

    I hope they do strip out the GH references as I see that as an impediment to licensing to a 3rd party. Of course, flip side, where does that leave Dungeon and Dragon and Paizo's ability to sneak in GH material? And where does that leave Living Greyhawk?

    I'll be candid and say I'm really getting tired of buying Wotc products that are lackluster just for the odd GH reference. I've held my nose and done it but its getting harder. Case in point - Lords of Madness.

    Lords of Madness is the abberations book following in the line of the Draconomicon (excellent) and Libris Mortis (okay). It has hardly any significant GH content and is at best a mixed bag otherwise. It is no where near as good as either of its predecessors. In a nutshell, it tries to make abberations all Lovecrafty and spooky. Just one problem. Players have been wacking Beholders for decades. Its kinda like closing the barn door after the cow has already gotten out and has been grazing for the past month. Too little. Too late. If not for the thin trickle of GH material, I'd have passed on this one. A 4E that has no such trickle will save me money and aggrevation. True story - after reading Lords of Madness, I honestly started thinking about the possibility of starting up a 1E/2E game!

    Come'on 4th Edition!
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    Sat Apr 16, 2005 6:22 pm  

    Personally, I could care less about whether another GH core sourcebook is produced for 3.5. New information or adventures? Certainly. But yet another rehashing of the folio/boxed set/FtA/Player's Guide (& tAB)/LGG really has significantly less appeal to me.

    Each of these rehashes has added to what already existed before. I'll even say they added significantly in every case, but YMMV. I gotta agree with GVD -- I hope they just let it all go. I'm actually happy enough with Dungeon these days that I'd be happy if things just continue as they are now. Better that than a return to Puppets and Gargoyle, IMHO.

    Now if we're talking about something that would build on the LGG, I'd be excited...provided it was in good hands. Aw, I'd be excited but disappointed even if it wasn't in good hands. Wink

    What DID interest me was this:

    Quote:
    I kinda feel sorry for Erik Mona really. I know that Paizo has kinda been leading the way for Greyhawk in many ways but I am now understanding why the new Adventure Path was curbed back from what it once entailed for Greyhawk.


    Phoebus, the only reference I found to this was made in passing by the guy who quoted all the sales figures. Did I miss something? From what I've see on the Paizo boards, Greyhawk fans should have lots to keep them happy with Age of Worms. Check out this thread on their boards:

    http://paizo.com/paizo/messageboards/dungeon/ageOfWorms/ageOfWorms
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    Sun Apr 17, 2005 5:12 pm  

    Actually if you dig deeper into the Greyhawk boards at Wizards, Erik talks about how he had really big plans to fully set the second AP in Greyhawk and to hopefully build some setting articles with the AP in mind ala, Hardby, Isle of Terror and Istivin.

    Looks like WotC put the kabosh on that, although I am sure Erik will sneak some setting specific stuff in there. My feeling is we won't be seeing anything else like Istivin or Hardby in Dungeon at least not that rich in detail.

    I think the best we will get is stuff like the Demogorgon adventure which had some passing Greyhawk references.


    Last edited by Phoebus on Tue Apr 19, 2005 10:45 am; edited 1 time in total
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    Sun Apr 17, 2005 5:40 pm  

    Actually, I spent an hour digging deeper prior to my post, but I'm done so I'll take your word for it. Wink

    That just blows.
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    Mon Apr 18, 2005 6:47 pm  

    Too bad about the Gh content in Dungeon o'well guess that means I'll be spending less on dungeon. I don't even use the adventures I just like to take what GH info I can and change it to meet my expectations.

    Hope things turn out well though.
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    Tue Apr 19, 2005 1:57 am  

    I've been wondering lately if the fan base itelf has changed over the years. People, on ENWorld at least, seem to be more interested in fantasy than in medieval-style settings.
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    Tue Apr 19, 2005 6:07 am  

    Algolei wrote:
    I've been wondering lately if the fan base itelf has changed over the years. People, on ENWorld at least, seem to be more interested in fantasy than in medieval-style settings.


    Interesting observation. Personally, I don't see the two as mutually exclusive.

    I certainly don't see GH as a mostly medieval fantasy, but rather a fantasy that happens to have a medieval frame. One of the strengths of GH to me is its ability to accept, without breaking, so many diverse types of fantasy, yet still keeping that medieval flavoring.

    EN World, IMO much like the Wotc site, follows fashion to a significant degree. Wotc says Eberron? En World and the Wotc website will polly-parot: "Eberron, Ebberon, Ebberon, Polly want a Dragonmark." Eberron will be gone in due course to judge by things so far. Then Wotc will trot out the next fad and the polly-parots will follow fashion. "Eberron? That is soooo 2005! Get with the times! Its Neopet Realms! The Chosen of Mystra are all Star Sisterz and Elminster is paying a booty call! That's the dillio!" Feh.

    Greyhawk is the bedrock setting. The wheel? We invented the wheel. No need to reinvent it.
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    Tue Apr 19, 2005 5:02 pm  

    Here is the deal.

    GH was put as the Core setting, because the guys in charge of WotC were GH fans at the time. but from a bussiness sense it was not smart to do 2 fanatsy settings (GH & FR). FR makes money, not so much in the rpg side of things, but in the novel side ot things. Something that GH has never been able to do. WotC did several GH novels -they didn't sell, (have my own thoughts on why that was -but off topic). So putting GH as the core setting was a way of keeping it alive, the fans (somewhat) happen, and not cut off thier nose to spit thier face.

    Over the years the FR setting is starting to lose steam, and dollar amounts, to the tune of getting dropped soon. Ebberon came out to jump start a new setting before FR completely dies. Personally I don't think FR has to die, but it does have to get a new Brand manager if it's going to live (and I say that as someone that does not like FR).

    GH as a setting can not come back not until FR and Ebberon both die out. FR has to die first, so that there is only Ebberon is all we have, then that has to die, Ebberon is the Key to GH living. Ebberon is made to look different from FR and GH, from the ourside FR and GH look a lot a like, that is why the buffer is needed.

    just sort of rambling, sorry about that.
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    Tue Apr 19, 2005 6:20 pm  

    Algolei wrote:
    I've been wondering lately if the fan base itelf has changed over the years. People, on ENWorld at least, seem to be more interested in fantasy than in medieval-style settings.


    I've been gaming with a group only ten years (or so) younger than I, and it's like they're speaking a different language. I just don't get most of the jokes.

    The fantasy influences of todays teens are alot different than they were for people in their late twenties, thirties, or older - there's just no getting around that. I didn't know anything about anime or manga or any of that until late college -- they grew up on it. Videogames, computer games, the internet...it's a much bigger change than ever before.

    Sadly, I'm leaning towards the view that if Greyhawk is really going to succeed again, it would need a complete overhaul/reboot. Tear it down, and build it up again.

    Greyhawk may have invented the wheel, but you don't put a wagon wheel on a Lamborghini. Sad

    You may burn me at the stake now.
    Nell.
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    Wed Apr 20, 2005 6:09 am  

    Nellisir wrote:
    Greyhawk may have invented the wheel, but you don't put a wagon wheel on a Lamborghini. Sad

    You may burn me at the stake now.
    Nell.


    There can be no doubt that the fantasy influences of one generation are distinct from those of earlier generations. There can be no doubt that these will be visible and notable. It is, however, a spectrum. There is a source and sufficient interest that leads to exploration will inevitably lead back to the source. In fantastic literature, that source is the pulp era of Howard, HPL etc. and a bit further back Machen and Dunsany. In gaming, that source is Greyhawk and, I believe, Call of Cthulthu.

    I’ll spare everyone the invective directed toward Wotc and simply note that the market leader does not market to the spectrum, nor encourage anyone hanging around long enough to explore beyond the entry level game that brought them in. Herein lies the answer to the “lack of new gamers” and a host of other ills, said to bedevil the market. This also explains why 4E will be upon us shortly. The market leader practices what on Wall Street is called “churning the market.” 4E will be “churned” out, shortly. By their own hand, they have no choice.
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    Wed Apr 20, 2005 11:12 am  

    Well from reading the Paizo boards it looks like we are getting another level of Maure Castle from Rob Kuntz.

    I will be very interested in seeing how much regional detail appears in the Age of Worms adventure path for Greyhawk.
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    Wed Apr 20, 2005 12:06 pm  
    Greyhawk Needs

    It would be nice to have a GH supplement and IP Owner support. But that aint happening. What I think GH needs is a new entree....

    Ask yourself this... if a new gamer for some reason became interested in GH, other than by playing in one of our games, what would you suggest he pick up?

    The LGG... nope, great for us dedicated fans but just not readable.

    The Boxed Set... Dated

    The Adventure Begins..wrong edition

    It is our hope the the GM Project will fill some of this need, enough to intrigue young players to read more. Maybe, maybe not. I dont believe GH needs a complete overhall as much as simple introductory material.
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    Wed Apr 20, 2005 8:07 pm  
    Re: Greyhawk Needs

    Anced_Math wrote:


    The LGG... nope, great for us dedicated fans but just not readable.

    The Boxed Set... Dated

    The Adventure Begins..wrong edition


    Um, so?

    Besides, why does a 2e product get labelled as "wrong edition", but a 1e product doesn't?

    Remember that there is no "right" or "wrong" edition at canonfire.
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    Thu Apr 21, 2005 6:00 am  
    Wrong Edition

    Well Chat, I was specific in saying that there is not a product out there for NEW players. The younger players, 12, 15, 17 or 20 years old. In this particular instance it is the wrong edition. It is unlikely that they will go to EBay to buy the older editions, and that is just another hurdle to making GH viable in the commercial market.

    I played AD&D and had the same Players Handbook for nearly 20 years. I loved it. My preference was to stay with it, not learn a new system. However a flood took all those books away and I bought 3rd ed. I am happy I did, but have not animosity towards the older editions.

    I like and support the idea of editionless work, like the LGG; but for an introductory piece, one to hook them and bring them back, it should include stats for the ease of the new DM, and it should be 3.5.
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    Thu Apr 21, 2005 6:01 am  

    I think he was relating to new gamers becoming interested in the setting and finding out about it.

    Right now the only way to do that is through the LG which if you have played in the LG you know it is miles away from the Greyhawk of 1st edition.

    Yeah, and also what he said. Smile
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    Thu Apr 21, 2005 6:43 am  

    KnightofPholtus wrote:
    WotC did several GH novels -they didn't sell, (have my own thoughts on why that was -but off topic).
    You mean because they were poorly written stories, most of which were written by an author of furry comics, and based on adventure modules instead of original storylines?

    If Greyhawk had received half the marketing and publications FR has, we would see more support -- and requests for support -- for new (not rehashed) Greyhawk material. We'd also be posting replies to threads about overdevelopment via an endless line of novels and whether or not they have hurt or helped the campaign.
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    Thu Apr 21, 2005 7:06 am  
    Picked these out

    Neopet Realms -- funny!

    GM Project? What's that, Anced?

    Sadly, I have never once been able to finish a Greyhawk novel. A good Greyhawk novel was certainly possible, but never pursued seriously. Contracting Jason Zavoda would have been a good move by Wizards of the Coast.

    ~Scott C.
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    Thu Apr 21, 2005 10:13 am  
    GM Project

    Quote:
    Scottenkainen Wrote:


    GM Project? What's that, Anced?


    You opened the door Smile At this time, Ivor Mac, Yabusama, Firepower, Hammar, Wolfsire, Dethand, Tedra, Wolfing, and myself are working on a Group Project to detail the Nation of Gran March.

    This is being done with several specific goals in mind. The first is the creation of a detailed Gazzateer of the Nation, one which describes the culture, politics, people, economy, institutions, laws, enemies, flora, fauna, problems, architeture, transportation, the military, the nobility, the religions and their churches, daily life, death and burial customs. Also, this will include a campaign arc, similar to the Adventure Path recently published in Dragon that will take the adventurer from 1st to 20th level. The project will have detailed maps and numerous illustrations to give the March a tangible feel. I have already begun taking pictures of Geography which is remincscent of the features of GM.

    It is our hope that a player new to the Flaness will be able to pick this Gazateer up, and in the first few pages be intrigued and able to play an entire campaign. We are sticking with Canon to all extents possible, but where we need to diverge, we will have notations. Mechanics and Stats will not be integral to the text, but will be in Stat boxes. This should allow other editions to plug in the stats as they need them, but all stats will be in 3.5 ed.

    That is the project in a nutshell. We really started in December, and are expecting publication some time in January. I am hoping we can come up with a Trailer release schedule in the next month, and we will start unveiling portions as we go.

    If you have not looked at it, there is thread section on the Gazateer, and we welcome all input, suggestions and participation.
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    Thu Apr 21, 2005 12:46 pm  

    Wow, Scottenkainen's here, but a novice? I mean, makes sense, but it's odd.

    ~basiliv

    Yak-Men have several uses for Greyhawk novels, but they can't be posted to this forum.

    P.S. Scott, I'll leave the Yak-men to you from now on. Wink
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    Sat Apr 23, 2005 7:57 pm  

    Boy, I wish I noticed this thread earlier than tonight. I've been working so hard on the Age of Worms launch issue that I've not had time to visit Canonfire lately.

    As for Greyhawk in Dungeon, we are talking about a magazine that just ran a picture of Iggwilv and Graz'zt on the cover. The issue we're finishing now has another Maure Castle level from Rob Kuntz. We've got plenty of things in store that will appeal directly to Greyhawk fans.

    The exact perameters of the Age of Worms Adventure Path have changed a lot over the last year or so. Originally it was to be 20 adventures long, but good sense came over me and I scaled it back to 12 adventures. Likewise, the exact approach I've wanted to take insofar as setting is concerned has changed several times during the formulation of the campaign outline.

    The Age of Worms will be based in the "core" continuity of the D&D game, meaning that the locales important to the plot will reflect certain Greyhawk elements. The faiths of St. Cuthbert, Heirnoneous, Wee Jas, and Obad-Hai play roles in the first adventure, with Erythnul, Vecna, and Hextor coming into affairs in the course of the second.

    The Adventure Path opens in a mining town called Diamond Lake, nestled in hills riddled with ancient tombs. Three days by road to the west is the fabulous Free City, metropolis of wizards and thieves. Players running Eberron games are encouraged to use Sharn for this site, and FR fans are urged to use Waterdeep. Greyhawk fans can probably figure out what to call it on their own, but just in case we provide a suggestion.

    It is not overtly Greyhawk, being rather a campaign designed for the "core assumptions" of the D&D game. Greyhawk fans will find much to like, I assure you.

    Dungeon magazine is meant to appeal to a wide variety of D&D gamers. Sometimes, that means running a Greyhawk adventure, but it is not explicitly a "Greyhawk" magazine. We cover Eberron and the Forgotten Realms because they are currently supported worlds enjoyed by a lot of our readers. Most of our adventures are completely independent of setting, and can be used with any world, including one of the DM's design (which is how most people tend to play, anyway).

    To make a long story short, check out Dungeon 124 when it comes out in a little over a month. It'll give you a very good idea of the tone and flavor of the Age of Worms Adventure Path, and you can make your own decisions about how appropriate it will be for your Greyhawk campaigns.

    --Erik Mona
    Editor-in-Chief
    Dragon & Dungeon
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    Mon Apr 25, 2005 7:17 am  
    Re: Wrong Edition

    Anced_Math wrote:
    Well Chat, I was specific in saying that there is not a product out there for NEW players. The younger players, 12, 15, 17 or 20 years old. In this particular instance it is the wrong edition. It is unlikely that they will go to EBay to buy the older editions, and that is just another hurdle to making GH viable in the commercial market.

    I played AD&D and had the same Players Handbook for nearly 20 years. I loved it. My preference was to stay with it, not learn a new system. However a flood took all those books away and I bought 3rd ed. I am happy I did, but have not animosity towards the older editions.

    I like and support the idea of editionless work, like the LGG; but for an introductory piece, one to hook them and bring them back, it should include stats for the ease of the new DM, and it should be 3.5.


    I would still direct new players to use any Greyhawk product they can get their hands on. If they can't find a Greyhawk product on eBay for a reaonable price (and many things like LGG and Greyhawk Adventures go cheap), then much of it is available on RPG now. Edition makes no difference in my mind: my group plays in the Greyhawk setting using the Hero System (Champions). What really matters is introducing players to the possibilities of the setting, and that means getting the material into their hands.

    Theala
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    Mon Apr 25, 2005 7:22 am  

    iquander wrote:


    To make a long story short, check out Dungeon 124 when it comes out in a little over a month. It'll give you a very good idea of the tone and flavor of the Age of Worms Adventure Path, and you can make your own decisions about how appropriate it will be for your Greyhawk campaigns.

    --Erik Mona
    Editor-in-Chief
    Dragon & Dungeon


    I'm glad to see that Dungeon in particular still supports Greyhawk. Please keep up the good work in that area! If WoTC won't give us Greyhawk in any other way, a few Greyhawk SPECIFIC articles are all I have to look forward to.

    Thanks!

    Theala[/b]
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    Mon Apr 25, 2005 9:51 am  
    Thelea Sildoran

    Thelea,

    I hate to disagree. I am not an edition hawk, and have no particular bone to pick with those who like other editions or systems. I have liked the Hero system the few times I have played it.

    However, when I visit my local game store and I see the 10, 12, and 15 year old customers in with their parents, and the collage students in there talking about all night sessions, it is apparent that this is the market. This is the group that WoTC is going to have to reach. This is the market that Greyhawk is going to have to reach.

    My point is, there are 1000s of new products out there, new systems, new things to grab the attention of a new audience. If Greyhawk is ever to be viable, and to grab new players, it should be in what system they are playing. If there re some OD&D, AD&D and 2nd ed., people out there who are not playing Greyhawk, they probably are not going to start now.

    If they make it editionless they loose a marketing edge, they limit their demographics. If you choose to play an older edition, god bless, but to hope that someone will go to ebay in order to begin playing in Greyhawk is not functional. I dont want them to make it 3rd edition so that it pleases me. I want it to be in the latest edition so that it may appeal to the most consumers and the setting can continue as a viable supported product. Personally I would prefer editionless product as it would limit this interminable debate.

    But, If WoTC produced a new GH Players Guide today, in 3.5 then you can rest assured that when 4th edition comes out, there will be a group that started playing GH in 3.5 who will scream that they are changing the sacred text.
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    Mon Apr 25, 2005 10:16 am  

    Yeah, I gotta agree with Anced Math. As much as I, personally, could care less if there's yet another rehash of Greyhawk source material (see my prior post in this thread), I think it's needed if it's to become viable in the market again, and it needs to be edition-specific.

    Once they're hooked on Hawk, then maybe they'll prowl half.com (etc., etc., etc.) for those gems. But it's quite a challenge for those who are already Greyhawk fans. Many who are just trying to give it a whirl will decide not to bother.

    Look at all the good the LGG has done. I've seen many people in these forums state that their only introduction to GH has been the LGG, and they're asking for advice on where else to look. It's a beatiful thing to see so many newbies to Greyhawk; right after GH-98 ended I thought new initiates would be very few and far between.

    That said, I think it would need to be done by true Greyhawk fans, like the LGG was, like GH-98 was, etc. Just putting something out there that says "Greyhawk" on it won't introduce people to the setting correctly. If you don't "get" Greyhawk, please don't write Greyhawk. No product will please all Greyhawk fans (too many splinter-cults among us), but you could pull in a lot of them.

    I don't really NEED regional feats, even more prestige classes, etc., but if these things had more of a true Greyhawk flavor to them I'd welcome them into my campaign with open arms. Even if a new product had little new to offer me, I'd buy it to support the line and pray for gazeteers and other supplements. Smile
    _________________
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    I didn't design the world,
    I merely facilitated its creation
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    Mon Apr 25, 2005 1:25 pm  
    Re: Thelea Sildoran

    Anced_Math wrote:
    Thelea,

    <snip>


    If they make it editionless they loose a marketing edge, they limit their demographics. If you choose to play an older edition, god bless, but to hope that someone will go to ebay in order to begin playing in Greyhawk is not functional. I dont want them to make it 3rd edition so that it pleases me. I want it to be in the latest edition so that it may appeal to the most consumers and the setting can continue as a viable supported product. Personally I would prefer editionless product as it would limit this interminable debate.

    But, If WoTC produced a new GH Players Guide today, in 3.5 then you can rest assured that when 4th edition comes out, there will be a group that started playing GH in 3.5 who will scream that they are changing the sacred text.


    Well . . . you have a point. I've heard that all Greyhawk references are going to be pulled out of 4th ed. I'm not sure if that means that the core rules will have NO campaign specific references of any sort--sounds like it. Which is a mistake IMHO. I can see what WoTC is doing--they've decideded to make Forgotten Realms and Eberron their core settings and Greyhawk is too "similar" to compete . . .yet they won't license it out to anyone else to publish they way they did with Ravenloft.

    Yeah, Greyhawk needs to be in current edition products, no question. The survival of the setting right now depends on those of us who are still devoted to it, and our ability to keep it alive. That RPG Now keeps those old products available for download is an indicator of continuing interest.

    I wonder what a survey of new gamers would show as to knowledge of current and previous D&D settings? Are we not giving newcomers to our hobby enough credit?

    Theala
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    Mon Apr 25, 2005 1:30 pm  

    basiliv wrote:

    I don't really NEED regional feats, even more prestige classes, etc., but if these things had more of a true Greyhawk flavor to them I'd welcome them into my campaign with open arms. Even if a new product had little new to offer me, I'd buy it to support the line and pray for gazeteers and other supplements. Smile


    I'm not the least bit interested in a Greyhawk book that is a catalog of feats, new character classes, or other game mechanics. Even assuming I was playing 3.5 (I play Hero System), what I REALLLY need and want is INFORMATION. I want character writeups, story arcs, campaign ideas, more information on important events, magic items, intrigue, politics, the juicy stuff of good story telling. Give me gazeteers with full color poster sized maps, and lots of visual references I can use to enliven my game. A lot of my game books I keep as much for the artwork as the content.

    My two cents,

    Theala
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    Mon Apr 25, 2005 2:21 pm  

    And you're definitely not alone in playing Greyhawk with a non-D&D game mechanic. I agree, all of these would be a lot more appealing to me too:

    Quote:
    I want character writeups, story arcs, campaign ideas, more information on important events, magic items, intrigue, politics, the juicy stuff of good story telling. Give me gazeteers with full color poster sized maps, and lots of visual references I can use to enliven my game. A lot of my game books I keep as much for the artwork as the content.


    I don't know how many more books of feats, spell, and prestige classes Wizards will need to produce before they get it through their heads. They've saturated the market with this type of product. Why not try a little variety now? There are lots of other product-types they could produce, like those you mentioned. I'm sure you and I are not alone in a desire to see this kind of material.

    My only point was that I'll support almost any Greyhawk products that get released - and I'm unemployed!! Juicy tidbits like those you mentioned won't happen until the line gets off the ground. Let's not raise the bar too high yet. Save that for later. Wink
    _________________
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    I didn't design the world,
    I merely facilitated its creation
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    Mon Apr 25, 2005 3:31 pm  

    Theala_Sildorian wrote:
    basiliv wrote:

    I don't really NEED regional feats, even more prestige classes, etc., but if these things had more of a true Greyhawk flavor to them I'd welcome them into my campaign with open arms. Even if a new product had little new to offer me, I'd buy it to support the line and pray for gazeteers and other supplements. Smile


    I'm not the least bit interested in a Greyhawk book that is a catalog of feats, new character classes, or other game mechanics. Even assuming I was playing 3.5 (I play Hero System), what I REALLLY need and want is INFORMATION. I want character writeups, story arcs, campaign ideas, more information on important events, magic items, intrigue, politics, the juicy stuff of good story telling. Give me gazeteers with full color poster sized maps, and lots of visual references I can use to enliven my game. A lot of my game books I keep as much for the artwork as the content.

    My two cents,

    Theala


    Yep, 100% behind those sentiments, as I have expressed nearly the same view on the WOTC site. Current offerings are too formulaic and mechanics-focused IMHO. Just give me a thin pamphlet of campaign themes, adventure hooks and evocative art and ya got me!
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    Mon Apr 25, 2005 7:18 pm  
    Agree

    Well, I have to agree. I think Feats are one of the best additions to 3rd ed., over the earlier editions, but this is a questions of mechanics. If you play HERO, or D20, or OD&D, or whatever, these things are of limited interest.

    However, Information is the key. What is going to happen next in 593 CY. However, I think before Wizards does that, they ought to get a few dedicated and quality writers and simply do an Introduction to the entirety of GH.

    This is going to be a left handed compliment, but GVD can take it. In a recent thread on style GVD hit it right on the head, there is a way to write GH stuff, and that is not what a new DM needs. They need something new, and differnet than what has come before. The past has been wonderful for it's artistry and originality, but not for it's utility.
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