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5E 3 Classic Settings Coming To 5E?

On the D&D Celebration – Sunday, Inside the D&D Studio with Liz Schuh and Ray Winninger, Winninger said that WotC will be shifting to a greater emphasis on settings in the coming years.

This includes three classic settings getting active attention, including some that fans have been actively asking for. He was cagey about which ones, though.

The video below is an 11-hour video, but the information comes in the last hour for those who want to scrub through.



Additionally, Liz Schuh said there would be more anthologies, as well as more products to enhance game play that are not books.

Winninger mentioned more products aimed at the mainstream player who can't spend immense amount of time absorbing 3 tomes.

Ray and Liz confirmed there will be more Magic: The Gathering collaborations.
 

EscherEnigma

Explorer
Keith's commentary on the CotSF is that it's supposed to be mostly good with some dark spots, rather than mostly gray with a mix of white and black spots.
/shrug

Your take on the printed material ("mostly gray") and Keith's bitterness (I don't see it) is different from mine. The only book I can think of that skewed darker on the Flame was the "Religions of Eberron" one. I'm pretty sure the 4e book hid the "darker" stuff in the GM's book, not the player's book, and I don't think 5e gave it much screen time either.
 

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Nymrod

Explorer
/shrug

Your take on the printed material ("mostly gray") and Keith's bitterness (I don't see it) is different from mine. The only book I can think of that skewed darker on the Flame was the "Religions of Eberron" one. I'm pretty sure the 4e book hid the "darker" stuff in the GM's book, not the player's book, and I don't think 5e gave it much screen time either.
Five Nations makes it seem that the Thranes show significant prejudice against people who don't worship the Flame and non-humans, keeping them essentially locked out of positions of power. That was also not really the intent for the nation. And Forge of War doesn't treat Thrane kindly either. It certainly feels that Keith's intent for Thrane was for it to be much more benevolent than it is presented by other authors. I mean the truly horribly part of the Church activity in Thrane is Thaliost under Dariznu, who is an AUNDAIRAN archbishop.
 

ChaosOS

Hero
Supporter
Yeah, the three books I reference for the "mostly gray" are Five Nations, the Forge of War, and Faiths of Eberron (notably, the books Keith didn't write). In all fairness, I don't think Keith himself would agree with his earliest writings (Dragonshards -- Church of the Silver Flame, Part 1). But my views are also colored by my participation in the Eberron discord, where the most reliable ways to get Keith to chime in is talk about the Church of the Silver Flame and/or Lycanthropes. For example

Keith Baker said:
What I've said before is that the CotSF is more like a combination of Jedi Knights and Men in Black than any religion in our world. Eberron is a world where supernatural evil is a very real, constant threat. Khyber is under your feet right now and you never know when something could burst forth. Fiends ruled the world once and they want it back. Random undead. Coterminous periods. The Silver Flame isn't a god giving you commandments; it's a FORCE that strengthens those who stand against the darkness.
 

Essafah

Explorer
I love Greyhawk and would like to see Greyhawk get a full write up and treatment like Eberron and Wildemount. I will speculate however that WOTC will not do that. I think instead they will release worlds that are highly distinctive from traditional fantasy worlds. I think this was one reason Eberron was the first classic setting (besides FR which is the 5E default) released. To that end my guesses as to the next worlds to be released (in no particular order) are: Dark Sun, Planescape, (both of these are awesome worlds that I like) and lastly.....I would guess Spelljammer BUT I would not be too shocked if they surprised us somehow. For example, I wouldn't be shocked if given how Curse of Strahd was received and their current incorporation of horror elements into Rime of The Frost Maiden if WOTC expanded Ravenloft into a full campaign world and not just an adventure. Regardless of what world they select just I am just happy to see their commitment to bring classic campaign settings back to life. I admit I will be disappointed if they just mean via adventures like they did with Curse of Strahd but if they are doing an actual campaign setting releases in the same style of Eberron they could pick any setting and I would excited.
 

vecna00

Explorer
Yeah, the three books I reference for the "mostly gray" are Five Nations, the Forge of War, and Faiths of Eberron (notably, the books Keith didn't write). In all fairness, I don't think Keith himself would agree with his earliest writings (Dragonshards -- Church of the Silver Flame, Part 1). But my views are also colored by my participation in the Eberron discord, where the most reliable ways to get Keith to chime in is talk about the Church of the Silver Flame and/or Lycanthropes. For example
A bit of a tangent: It was that quote that inspired me to attempt an Eberron campaign that was one part X-Files and one part Superfriends-esque super groups. Taking a number of the organizations fighting against otherworldly threats joining forces, comparing notes, and actively trying to set up a concerted defense against threats from outside of Eberron.

Back to the main topic: Classic Campaign Settings! My gut reaction would be that we'll get three of the following four: Dark Sun, Spelljammer, Planescape, and actual Ravenloft.

I feel that Dark Sun is a given, and will probably have some adjustments. Planescape has the second highest chance, and a toss up between the other two. We may have Curse of Strahd, but I definitely think they can flesh out a full campaign setting, but I'm also not holding my breath for it. Dark Sun, Planescape, and Spelljammer are on my wish list, along with Birthright, which may not ever happen.

A Forgotten Realms book is also possible, I just don't think it's likely. Greyhawk is never off the table, even if I have no attachment to it. I do think that Dragonlance would be more probable as an AP, but still on the table. I would love to see Al-Qadim and Kara-Tur come back and be better, but I can't speak to how likely that would be.

Wildcard pie in the sky hopes: A Modern/Sci-Fi setting. Give me 5e Modern, 5e Future, Gamma World, Star Frontiers, or Star Drive (if no one scooped up the naming rights like Dark Matter, which is pretty good, by the way). Hell, bring back Buck Rogers!

It is possible, however, that Spelljammer could have a more sci-fi bend. I say this because of something from Rime of the Frostmaiden regarding the Nautiloid:
One of the gnome ceremorphs has a laser pistol.
But, we shall see.
 

The metaplot of all setting will be frozen for some years, but maybe FR. I dare to say maybe at least four settings will come back between 2021 and 2022. The most popular settings are Ravenloft, Dark Sun and Planescape. These have got the the largest number of ballots / chances. Planescape to be published will be easier than Spelljammer., but this is more open to allow lots of new elements to be added.

I have got some suspects there will be a multiverse event causing or justify retcon in almost all settings. Bigger than the sundering in FR.

Sometimes I think, and I have said, they are plans to reintroduce the old settings by means of videogame adaptations, because today is the best promotion/advertising, but making a videogame needs a lot of time, work and money.

Hasbro wants the return of Dragonlance, but first it has to feel itself ready for media productions. Hasbro wants to be a producer of cash-cow multimedia franchises as Disney.

If Hasbro wants to make money with crossovers I guess there is an open door to the concept of akashic demiplane, ideaverse or "recursion" (the Strange RPG by Bruce Cordell and Monte Cook), parallel universes created by the collective memory, sometimes based in fiction works as novels. The mockery adventure of the Castle Greyhawk is an example of a D&D zone tainted by this akashic demiplane
 

Nymrod

Explorer
The metaplot of all setting will be frozen for some years, but maybe FR. I dare to say maybe at least four settings will come back between 2021 and 2022. The most popular settings are Ravenloft, Dark Sun and Planescape. These have got the the largest number of ballots / chances. Planescape to be published will be easier than Spelljammer., but this is more open to allow lots of new elements to be added.

I have got some suspects there will be a multiverse event causing or justify retcon in almost all settings. Bigger than the sundering in FR.

Sometimes I think, and I have said, they are plans to reintroduce the old settings by means of videogame adaptations, because today is the best promotion/advertising, but making a videogame needs a lot of time, work and money.

Hasbro wants the return of Dragonlance, but first it has to feel itself ready for media productions. Hasbro wants to be a producer of cash-cow multimedia franchises as Disney.

If Hasbro wants to make money with crossovers I guess there is an open door to the concept of akashic demiplane, ideaverse or "recursion" (the Strange RPG by Bruce Cordell and Monte Cook), parallel universes created by the collective memory, sometimes based in fiction works as novels. The mockery adventure of the Castle Greyhawk is an example of a D&D zone tainted by this akashic demiplane

I think that outside of FR, they don't really care or need an event to justify the retcons. FR needed the Sundering because the novels are important to them.
Ignoring Faction War doesn't really affect any secondary media or any other settings though, especially if you focus on Sigil and the Factions which were the core of Planescape.
With Dark Sun in 4E they just ignored the Prism Pentad and found ways to fit certain crunchy bits of the edition (imo with a decent amount of success; the shaman instead of cleric was an excellent choice if not better than the original and most of the race introductions were solid except perhaps the eladrin).
I'd see Dragonlance as a similar case; honestly I'd expect it to be either set during/immediately after the War of the Lance and/or have an option for after the War of Souls.
With Spelljammer you need to decide how you'll handle it. Imo the best option is to have the setting on a custom crystal sphere that tries to include the best parts of wildspace (like Shadow of the Spider Moon did). Doing Realmspace, Krynnspace or anything similar forces you to take the lore of those settings into consideration; Realmspace can definitely work but frankly I am not sure it's the best idea.
Ravenloft is a bit tricky. Would they retcon something from 5E or would they expand on CoS and liberally change other domains as well. For me the best option is something that sticks close to the core pre-Conjuction though honestly a new version of Ravenloft that features the most popular domains of the core and just cuts others out can definitely work.
 

AdmundfortGeographer

Getting lost in fantasy maps
I would love to see a 5e Dark Sun bring out some of the original races that the design team was told they could not do because they were too different from the core rules races. In a past interview, I think it was either Troy or Tim who said the scene of Kalak hovering up the side of the pyramid, with all the various creatures working away, were all the original races the design team wanted to do. Belgoi, gith, jozhal, baazrag, and others that showed up in the gladiator games
 
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Kobold Avenger

Adventurer
For Planescape I think they should just advance the timeline so the factions are back in some form (remove the limit of 15 only). It's metaplot was mainly about Rowan Darkwood as the primary point, and the thing with Orcus/Tenebrous being only a 2-part adventure path that was mostly in isolation of the first plotline. They should put at least 80 years past Faction War and anything to do with Rowan Darkwood (or Vecna, from that let's explode 2e module).
 

Nymrod

Explorer
For Planescape I think they should just advance the timeline so the factions are back in some form (remove the limit of 15 only). It's metaplot was mainly about Rowan Darkwood as the primary point, and the thing with Orcus/Tenebrous being only a 2-part adventure path that was mostly in isolation of the first plotline. They should put at least 80 years past Faction War and anything to do with Rowan Darkwood (or Vecna, from that let's explode 2e module).
That would kill off several perfectly fine NPCs who'd die in that time.
 

Kobold Avenger

Adventurer
That would kill off several perfectly fine NPCs who'd die in that time.
Some of them they could definitely hand-wave as having long lifespans, especially if they're Planetouched. For others they could have just found ways of extending their lives, like Harys Hatchis who is a Human but also is a Wizard.
 


Kobold Avenger

Adventurer
Back on the subject of Spelljammer, in it's 2e rules there were 2 different damage tracks/scales. One being the normal HP for personal combat between characters, and the other being the damage track for ships with Hull Points as the HP. While 5e does have vehicle rules, it doesn't currently have 2 separate tracks.
 

Twiggly the Gnome

Adventurer
I would love to see a 5e Dark Sun bring out some of the original races that the design team was told they could not do because they were too different from the core rules races. In a past interview, I think it was either Troy or Tim who said the scene of Kalak hovering up the side of the pyramid, with all the various creatures working away, were all the original races the design team wanted to do. Belgoi, gith, jozhal, baazrag, and others that showed up in the gladiator games

I wouldn't mind if 5e Dark Sun went back to the original pitch as a starting point. Leave the elves, dwarves and halflings on the cutting room floor.
 


For Planescape I think they should just advance the timeline so the factions are back in some form (remove the limit of 15 only). It's metaplot was mainly about Rowan Darkwood as the primary point, and the thing with Orcus/Tenebrous being only a 2-part adventure path that was mostly in isolation of the first plotline. They should put at least 80 years past Faction War and anything to do with Rowan Darkwood (or Vecna, from that let's explode 2e module).

They'd be more likely to rewind the timeline to pre-Faction War rather than try to advance it way beyond Faction War, imho. I reckon WotC learned a bit on how to handle problematic legacy lore between the relative success of 4e Dark Sun and the radioactive dumpster fire full of covid-infested skunks that was 4e FR...
 

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