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D&D 5E Do you like or dislike Song & Steeal Dragons being demoted to Folklore?

Do you like or dislike Song & Steeal Dragons being demoted to Folklore?

  • I hate or Dislike the removal of Steel and Song Dragons as type of Dragon

    Votes: 14 18.9%
  • I like or love the removal of Steel and Song Dragons as a type of Dragon

    Votes: 9 12.2%
  • Neutral as a Gem Dragon

    Votes: 51 68.9%

  • Total voters
    74

MarkB

Legend
Just a reminder, the Novels functional ARE setting, and separating the novels from TTRPG canon into there own canon is worse then the Spellplague, completely poorly thought out none sense, and not how the setting was designed or how it evovled over years. As said I disregard what Chris and Jeremy said, which btw contradicted each other.

Sometimes I wish Ed would sue WotC for voiding the contract and take FR back, they aren't being good Stewards of the setting. They learn NOTHING from the back lash to the Spellplague.
How is anyone supposed to steward a product that has over thirty years of history across multiple editions, sourcebooks, magazines and novels? How could you possibly track all of that material well enough to build upon it without contradicting something?

I was first introduced to the Forgotten Realms back in the 3.5e era, by friends who were long-term afficionados of the setting, and even back then it was an incredibly intimidating amount of information to contemplate. I wanted to use it in my games, but just getting up to speed on even a single region sufficiently to run it for players already familiar with the setting seemed insurmountable. And that was just with a few rather forgiving players to accommodate.

Trying to do the same for an entire fanbase of players, well enough to create an official product that will withstand their unsympathetic scrutiny? WotC rightly judged that impossible.
 

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ardoughter

Hero
Supporter
Because it is pretty hard to reconcile the history of Rise of Tiamat and the dragon cult when part of the cannon surrounding the first uprising and the reason for its failure is tied closely around the actions of a Song Dragon (and a Vampire Red Dragon) ....... or maybe that is not cannon any more.
Canon Schmanion. There are no canonical works in 5e Lore except the Monster Manual, PHB and DMG because all other lore is related by in fiction characters. Volo, Mordenkanien, Fizban, etc. Fizban is notorious for selective forgetting of things. Mordenkanien's guide comes to us via Shemeska. For all we know Shemeska could have created the entire thing, though they claim otherwise.
These lore books are as reliable as you want them to be.
 

vincegetorix

Jewel of the North
Trying to do the same for an entire fanbase of players, well enough to create an official product that will withstand their unsympathetic scrutiny? WotC rightly judged that impossible.

Yep. Once people start arguing that a company should be sued because of HOW they mention some random, unimportant mystical figure in a game, being WotC I would just shrug a say '' Why even try, screw it, we cant win anyway''
 

dave2008

Legend
Just a reminder, the Novels functional ARE setting, and separating the novels from TTRPG canon into there own canon is worse then the Spellplague, completely poorly thought out none sense, and not how the setting was designed or how it evovled over years. As said I disregard what Chris and Jeremy said, which btw contradicted each other.

Sometimes I wish Ed would sue WotC for voiding the contract and take FR back, they aren't being good Stewards of the setting. They learn NOTHING from the back lash to the Spellplague.
I disagree. As someone who does care a little bit about canon, but doesn't give a lick about the novels, or computer games, or other media really, that is exactly what I wanted to here.
 


dave2008

Legend
This is such a non-starter.

The only answer if you care about canon?

Stop, or write your own.
That is not entirely true. There are degrees of caring about canon. I feel I can care about canon without being beholden to it and I am extremely except of canon changes that I like - less so of ones I don't like. However, regardless of the status of "official" canon, I also know my game is the world view we create is the only canon that truly matters.
 

Maxperson

Morkus from Orkus
For folks who care about an official canon, the best approach to take for 5E might be to basically treat each non-core product as a unique entity, not bound by anything established in any other work. Dungeon of the Mad Mage disagrees with Fizban's on steel dragons because they aren't in the same canon...
I don't think treating each book as separate canon is useful. I think that might have to tweak a few things if there are any contradictions, but that they should otherwise be treated as canon for the setting in question. Dungeon of the Mad Mage obviously being in Waterdeep.
 


grimslade

Doddering Old Git
I guess I am neutral about them being relegated to folklore in D&D. It doesn't preclude me from having them in my home games if I so desire. I guess I don't understand why WotC felt the need to dismiss them in a sidebar at all. They may want to revisit steel and song dragons in a future project, and now they have lightly bound themselves to this folklore nonsense. I mean, if they wanted to not have Steel and Song dragons in 5E, why mention them at all? I think the sidebar is to acknowledge these dragons without having to stat them up. Fizban's is supposed to be a definitive guide to all things dragon, written by an Avatar of Paladine himself, so not mentioning them at all would have been more of a controversial statement.
As for monstrous/degenerate dragons, DRAGON is a loaded term for D&D. There are almost 50 years of ossification of the beast into Skittles Smaug. If you want to have monstrous dragon-like beasts of myth and legend, you will have to use proto-drake, drake, Great wyrm, or some-such to get the point across to jaded D&D players.
 

There is, or should be, an open door, and about the idea some "true" dragons are from "artificial" origin. These species were created by spellcaster humanoids, something like the sorcerer-kings from Athas/Dark Sun. Maybe the first song dragon was a bard blessed by a wish spell because somebody wanted her to save her beatiful voice and musical talent for generations, and the steel dragon was a sorcerer who discovered the trick to live more years thanks special polymorphic magic (and reincarnation), or a special champion blessed by a draconic god from a far place.
 

Ath-kethin

Elder Thing
No, the Gods do exist AL Qadim were very much real, it's just they didn't materialize in the material plane.

I got to say, not a fan of all the Antitheism being pushed into every setting.

Not every setting has to be atheistic, it's a huge retcon in FR, you have Eberron and Darksun for deities are folklore or don't exist or are gone.

The Gods are a huge part of the Forgotten Realms setting.

You don't have to homogenize every setting, destroying what is special about them.

Heck I don't care what you do in your home game version of FR, but don't wreck the official lore of the Forgotten Realms.
Al-Qadim gods didn't even get game statistics until a Hackmaster(!) supplement in 2003. I like it that way.

Gods should be more than just big monsters, and giving them game statistics makes them just big monsters. And if I want my players to be fighting gods, I'll use various innumerable Cthulhu Mythos supplements.

Following the same model, Eberron's gods are religions - again, not big monsters. It's a take I totally dig, and one I heartily endorse. To each their own, but for my part I think the societies and viewpoints of any setting are far more interesting when things need to be taken on/handled by faith. There's no valor in a character who follows the path of righteousness just because some giant toddler will literally come beat her up if she doesn't.
 

Azuresun

Adventurer
Al-Qadim gods didn't even get game statistics until a Hackmaster(!) supplement in 2003. I like it that way.

Gods should be more than just big monsters, and giving them game statistics makes them just big monsters. And if I want my players to be fighting gods, I'll use various innumerable Cthulhu Mythos supplements.

Following the same model, Eberron's gods are religions - again, not big monsters. It's a take I totally dig, and one I heartily endorse. To each their own, but for my part I think the societies and viewpoints of any setting are far more interesting when things need to be taken on/handled by faith. There's no valor in a character who follows the path of righteousness just because some giant toddler will literally come beat her up if she doesn't.

Bit of an excluded middle there.
 


Quickleaf

Legend
I dislike the retcon because it detracts from D&D's lore without adding anything. I'm flabbergasted how something like hoard thieves (or whatever those parasites are called) could take priority over things like steel & song dragons. The "some metallic dragons prefer to live in humanoid form" is a one-liner suitable on a personality trait table – not even worth a sidebar.

Retcons are fine (IMHO) when they add something to the game.

For instance, they could have said "Steel dragons is a catch-all for spellcasting metallic dragons who rebelled against Bahamut's rule and the Council of Wyrm's mandate that dragon not interfere with mortal politics, preferring to live in humanoid form. The term harkens to the Song of Steel and Talon describing how Bahamut formed the Council of Wyrms. Amiable meddlers, these dragons pose as sages, scholars, and mages, and seek to shape the course of human kingdoms."

That kind of retcon would have been more palatable to me, and changed my opinion to be neutral to mildly positive. Yeah, it would seem like an unnecessary change but the lore would be so interesting that the positives would outweigh the negatives.

This isn't just theory craft.

I used a steel dragon in my old AD&D Planescape campaign who masqueraded as a gnomish antiquities dealer, showing up in various cities to barter and swap lore with the PCs. He ended up publishing one PC's book on languages. There was always some hint at his draconic nature, like steel-grey eyes, a scale pattern to his doublet, a scarf seeming to be made of steel mesh, oddities so ancient they far eclipsed the gnomish lifespan, instantly recognizing the various types of steel (cold, Baatorian green, Abyssal bloodiron, etc), a coiled dragon ring, off-handedly referencing some event with firsthand intimacy that occurred ages ago, etc.

Part of the story arc was the PCs were trying to shift a town that was slipping across the Outlands (and towards the Abyss) back into Arcadia. One of the sub-quests to achieve this goal involved enticing lawful merchants to resume trading activity with the town. The PCs decided to convince their "gnomish" friend to do business with the town, and that's when his backstory was revealed about having a disagreement with his draconic brethren that led to him traveling the planes, studying humanoid cultures in hopes of creating a utopia to prove his jaded brethren wrong. The PCs ended up debating philosophy with two elder dragons to convince them how this town would be one form of utopia once it transitioned back to Arcadia. It was a lot of fun playing with the "we know he's a dragon, but no one is coming out and saying it." And the dragon sibling "politics" was a hoot.
 

HammerMan

Explorer
Sometimes I wish Ed would sue WotC for voiding the contract and take FR back, they aren't being good Stewards of the setting. They learn NOTHING from the back lash to the Spellplague.
is this just "If I could change reality" type wish or is there some legal issue with the deal?

FTR I would LOVE for the realms to be taken from WotC I just doubt it can...
 


jgsugden

Legend
Apologies, but I have not seen the sidebar.

Is it told from the perspective of a character, as in some Dragon Historian providing his insight, or is it stated as absolute fact?

Either way - in my games, whether set in the FR, Greyhawk, Eberron or my home brew substantially diverge from the lore of the books. This ain't nothing.
 

Urriak Uruk

Debate fuels my Fire
I dislike the retcon because it detracts from D&D's lore without adding anything. I'm flabbergasted how something like hoard thieves (or whatever those parasites are called) could take priority over things like steel & song dragons. The "some metallic dragons prefer to live in humanoid form" is a one-liner suitable on a personality trait table – not even worth a sidebar.

Well, I've actually listed to a Lore Your Should Know with Chris Perkins, and I remember him saying how he personally believed (at that time) previous editions went hog-wild with too many dragon types. I remember him even saying that he thought gem dragons were excessive, as he didn't like the idea that every alignment had to have its own dragon type.

So there was probably some internal tension at the D&D Team as to how many dragons should be statted before it started to look redundant and bloated. And although Song/Steel dragons may feel unique from a lore perspective, I don't see why they would be so special from a statistics perspective, so I'm not really surprised they didn't make it.
 

Well, I've actually listed to a Lore Your Should Know with Chris Perkins, and I remember him saying how he personally believed (at that time) previous editions went hog-wild with too many dragon types. I remember him even saying that he thought gem dragons were excessive, as he didn't like the idea that every alignment had to have its own dragon type.

So there was probably some internal tension at the D&D Team as to how many dragons should be statted before it started to look redundant and bloated. And although Song/Steel dragons may feel unique from a lore perspective, I don't see why they would be so special from a statistics perspective, so I'm not really surprised they didn't make it.

Lore reason are reason enough, period. And they could have done like DotMM and made them a template.
 


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