5E Campaign PDF Speculation
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  1. #1
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    Campaign PDF Speculation

    We're coming up on the one-year anniversary of Wayfinder's Guide to Eberron being stealth dropped on the DM's Guild and I'm curious if WotC will do something similar this year. Last year, it was announced along with Guildmaster's Guide to Ravnica and dropped that same day. The GGtR was leaked the day before, and while the WGE itself wasn't leaked, Eberron coming to the DM's Guild did.

    How likely is it that another campaign setting PDF will be released this summer? Which setting do you think is ready for the PDF treatment?

    I'm of the mindset that WotC will be doing this going forward with old settings. Release a PDF to test out any new mechanics, open it up on the Guild, and release a hardcover or boxed set the following year.

    As far as what setting they'll release, Dark Sun is towards the top of my wishlist. It's got more than a few mechanics that need testing, and WotC isn't shy about releasing a necessary class later on. It's certainly a possibility, how probable is a different story entirely.
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  2. #2
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    What do I think they'll release this way? Probably Innistrad, a popular M:tG setting.

    What do I hope they'll release this way? Strangely, the setting I want most is probably... Birthright. I never played it, because as presented in the boxed set, it's practically unplayable. So many great setting ideas; so little notion of what the DM should actually DO with them. I think a modern take could use exploration and building mechanics similar to Mutant: Year Zero (which brilliantly combines sandbox play with location-based and event-based adventures) and the political intrigue of Game of Thrones. Plus, if kickstarter is any indication, kingdom and stronghold rules are pretty popular add-ons to the game.
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  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by vecna00 View Post
    We're coming up on the one-year anniversary of Wayfinder's Guide to Eberron being stealth dropped on the DM's Guild and I'm curious if WotC will do something similar this year. Last year, it was announced along with Guildmaster's Guide to Ravnica and dropped that same day. The GGtR was leaked the day before, and while the WGE itself wasn't leaked, Eberron coming to the DM's Guild did.

    How likely is it that another campaign setting PDF will be released this summer? Which setting do you think is ready for the PDF treatment?

    I'm of the mindset that WotC will be doing this going forward with old settings. Release a PDF to test out any new mechanics, open it up on the Guild, and release a hardcover or boxed set the following year.

    As far as what setting they'll release, Dark Sun is towards the top of my wishlist. It's got more than a few mechanics that need testing, and WotC isn't shy about releasing a necessary class later on. It's certainly a possibility, how probable is a different story entirely.
    The other setting that requires major mechanical heavy lifting is Dark Sun. I wouldn't be surprised to see a similar strategy employed for Dark Sun soon, given the energy WotC has invested into thinking about it and talking about it publicly. Another strong contender would be Planescape, the other top tier setting that isn't on DMSGuild yet.
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    For some context on the tiers of setting popularity, this is what WotC let us know about their survey responses in 2015:

    "The popularity of settings in the survey fell into three distinct clusters. Not surprisingly, our most popular settings from prior editions landed at the top of the rankings, with Eberron, Ravenloft, Dark Sun, Planescape, and the Forgotten Realms all proving equally popular. Greyhawk, Dragonlance, and Spelljammer all shared a similar level of second-tier popularity, followed by a fairly steep drop-off to the rest of the settings. My sense is that Spelljammer has often lagged behind the broad popularity of other settings, falling into love-it-or-hate-it status depending on personal tastes. Greyhawk and Dragonlance hew fairly close to the assumptions we used in creating the fifth edition rulebooks, making them much easier to run with material from past editions. Of the top five settings, four require significant new material to function and the fifth is by far our most popular world."

    https://dnd.wizards.com/articles/features/july-survey
    Last edited by Parmandur; Wednesday, 19th June, 2019 at 07:07 PM.
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    My money's on Dark Sun (despite not being a fan of the setting).
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    Quote Originally Posted by Azzy View Post
    My money's on Dark Sun (despite not being a fan of the setting).
    Not a big fan myself (too Xtreme & grimdark), but it just makes sense.

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    Let's see.

    In order, the "BIG" settings in D&D are as follows, in rough order of use/importance:

    BIG AND GENERIC-Y
    Forgotten Realms
    Greyhawk
    Mystara
    Nentir Vale


    BIG AND NOT GENERIC-Y
    Ravenloft
    Eberron
    Dark Sun
    Dragonlance


    POPULAR BUT EATEN
    Kara-Tur (FR)
    Al-Qadim (FR)
    Maztica (FR)
    Horde (FR)
    Malatra (FR)
    Blackmoor (GH, kinda sorta)
    Thunder Rift (Mystara)


    METASETTINGS
    Spelljammer
    Planescape


    NICHE-Y

    Birthright
    Mahasarpa
    Ghostwalk
    Jakandor
    Dragon Fist (alternate rules)


    USED BEFORE FOR D&D, BUT IP ISSUES NOW
    Wilderlands of High Fantasy
    Lankhmar
    Pelinore
    Kingdoms of Kalamar




    Hmmm.... I'd go with .... PELINORE!

    Or, ya know, Dragonlance. Because the only thing that truly accompanies a Pestilence of Paladins is a Karma of Kender.

















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    Quote Originally Posted by 77IM View Post
    What do I think they'll release this way? Probably Innistrad, a popular M:tG setting.
    I kind of feel like the time for that has come and gone. We have Ravenloft, and we have the Plane Shift conversion for Innistrad; between them, I think D&D has the gothic horror niche covered in terms of official material, at least to a great enough degree that other setting needs become more pressing.
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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Parmandur View Post
    For some context on the tiers of setting popularity, this is what WotC let us know about their survey responses in 2015:

    "The popularity of settings in the survey fell into three distinct clusters. Not surprisingly, our most popular settings from prior editions landed at the top of the rankings, with Eberron, Ravenloft, Dark Sun, Planescape, and the Forgotten Realms all proving equally popular. Greyhawk, Dragonlance, and Spelljammer all shared a similar level of second-tier popularity, followed by a fairly steep drop-off to the rest of the settings. My sense is that Spelljammer has often lagged behind the broad popularity of other settings, falling into love-it-or-hate-it status depending on personal tastes. Greyhawk and Dragonlance hew fairly close to the assumptions we used in creating the fifth edition rulebooks, making them much easier to run with material from past editions. Of the top five settings, four require significant new material to function and the fifth is by far our most popular world."

    https://dnd.wizards.com/articles/features/july-survey
    So Forgotten Realms doesn't need a book because FR is the default setting for D&D 5e. Eberron is getting a full book this year, and already has a PDF. Ravenloft also doesn't need a PDF because Curse of Strahd largely gives it enough content for people to play there.

    So in the top five, that leaves Planescape and Dark Sun. Planescape is great, but it's also freakin huge if you consider the setting "the entirety of the planes" and not just Sigil. If you think of it as all the planes, BG: Descent is essentially a campaign setting but only for the 1/9 of one plane (and a FR city too, but still).

    So the likeliest PDF is Dark Sun. It's also got the wackiest rules to figure out with psionics, so makes more sense for them to try out a rough draft in PDF form before hardcover release.
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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Matthia05718273 View Post
    So Forgotten Realms doesn't need a book because FR is the default setting for D&D 5e. Eberron is getting a full book this year, and already has a PDF. Ravenloft also doesn't need a PDF because Curse of Strahd largely gives it enough content for people to play there.

    So in the top five, that leaves Planescape and Dark Sun. Planescape is great, but it's also freakin huge if you consider the setting "the entirety of the planes" and not just Sigil. If you think of it as all the planes, BG: Descent is essentially a campaign setting but only for the 1/9 of one plane (and a FR city too, but still).

    So the likeliest PDF is Dark Sun. It's also got the wackiest rules to figure out with psionics, so makes more sense for them to try out a rough draft in PDF form before hardcover release.
    For campaign setting purposes, Planescape probably equals Sigil & the Outlands: everything else is just part of the standard D&D meta-setting, and is detailed in the DMG. If/when we see a Planescape product, I would expect it to be all about Sigil and the factions there.
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