D&D 5E "Doom Sun" − reconstructing a 5e Dark Sun setting for the DMs Guild


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This is the most bizarre thing I’ve seen in a long long term time. To me it smacks of someone thinking they’re clever by making a parody (except it isn’t very funny) or homage to the old Athas without it being accurate. Either way, it was going to get the backs up of fans of Darksun (of which there are many).

You have to be familiar with Dark Sun, defiling, it’s lack of pantheon, know what a drey or Athasian dragon looks like, and the fact that Fyreen sounds like Pyreen.

All in all a pretty cheap shot. Too similar not to be referential, too different to give fans a hope that anything resembling the original will be forthcoming.

Very disappointing, and just reinforces my feeling that if I want to enjoy 5e going forward I need to rely on third parties, because what’s coming out of WOC is a steaming pile.
I feel like, with respect, you may perhaps be overreacting a tad.

If the previous Athaspace map hadn't come out, people would only be laughingly/playfully making the connections to Dark Sun. And some of what you're saying is beyond the realms of "reasonable connection" into Pepe Silvia territory, specifically Fyreen/Pyreen, I mean come on. No, including you, can possibly seriously think the name of a dying planet derives from the rather-obscure bunch of super-druids who used to roam Athas.
 

dave2008

Legend
This is the most bizarre thing I’ve seen in a long long term time. To me it smacks of someone thinking they’re clever by making a parody (except it isn’t very funny) or homage to the old Athas without it being accurate. Either way, it was going to get the backs up of fans of Darksun (of which there are many).

You have to be familiar with Dark Sun, defiling, it’s lack of pantheon, know what a drey or Athasian dragon looks like, and the fact that Fyreen sounds like Pyreen.

All in all a pretty cheap shot. Too similar not to be referential, too different to give fans a hope that anything resembling the original will be forthcoming.

Very disappointing, and just reinforces my feeling that if I want to enjoy 5e going forward I need to rely on third parties, because what’s coming out of WOC is a steaming pile.
I guess I have a different take. I think Doomspace looks interesting and I think it benefits from being "athas-touched" without being Athas, and, Darksun benefits from the exposure without it getting the short stick by being simply a part of an adventure and not a full setting.

IMO, this leaves space for a proper DS setting book. Will that happen? I have no idea. Do I need one. No. Do I want one. YES!
 


delericho

Legend
Especially as if it was similar to Fyreen, the whole "environmental" aspect would have been lost, because instead of the people of the planet screwing it up, they got screwed over by divine bollocks, which is a very different vibe - "sins of the ancestors" vs "a mean foreign god did it". It's just completely not the same.
Now that you mention it, you've just hit on something that had bugged me about the 4e Dark Sun, but that I'd never quite put my finger on before - that in that version of the setting much of the trouble comes because the gods lost their war with the primordials in that setting. And you're right; it's better if the setting is messed up because of something mortals did, rather than divine bollocks.
 

See, you say that, but I know a number of long-term Ravenloft fans IRL who aren't the "very online" people who inhabit messageboards, and all of them loved VRGtR, and none of them had the very lore-specific critiques some people here did, so I'm skeptical about how "mixed" the reaction was. Likewise reddit and Twitter seemed to like it. So I think they still went out of their way to avoid unnecessarily offending fans - but they had to make some lore choices, and they chose the ones which would make Ravenloft work better in the longer-term, rather than the shorter term. Even the offended people seemed to mostly be "mildly annoyed", rather than incensed like say with 4E's changes to the FR.

Yeah that's plausible.

Dark Sun is bizarrely popular, like Spelljammer, with younger people who have never played it, and has a whole chunk of people who like it from the 4E incarnation. If the version in Spelljammer seemed to be selling Athas short, or messing Athas up, I suspect a lot of people who might never even have played Dark Sun would have their noses put out of joint.

Especially as if it was similar to Fyreen, the whole "environmental" aspect would have been lost, because instead of the people of the planet screwing it up, they got screwed over by divine bollocks, which is a very different vibe - "sins of the ancestors" vs "a mean foreign god did it". It's just completely not the same.
Keep in mind it says no one knows, and it gives other alternatives to Fyreen's predicament, like the dragons (sorcerer-kings) destroying the sun by accident, etc.
 

TheSword

Legend
I feel like, with respect, you may perhaps be overreacting a tad.

If the previous Athaspace map hadn't come out, people would only be laughingly/playfully making the connections to Dark Sun. And some of what you're saying is beyond the realms of "reasonable connection" into Pepe Silvia territory, specifically Fyreen/Pyreen, I mean come on. No, including you, can possibly seriously think the name of a dying planet derives from the rather-obscure bunch of super-druids who used to roam Athas.
Nah, I disagree. The picture of the ssurran is a pretty much identical design as an athasian dragon. The word defiler is going to set bells ringing and the many many nods to athas just smack of parody. You think it’s coincidence that the planet is named with a one letter change from the original defenders of the original planet?

Maybe, it is an overreaction. Mostly I just feel this emotion…

1660224539614.gif
 

Now that you mention it, you've just hit on something that had bugged me about the 4e Dark Sun, but that I'd never quite put my finger on before - that in that version of the setting much of the trouble comes because the gods lost their war with the primordials in that setting. And you're right; it's better if the setting is messed up because of something mortals did, rather than divine bollocks.
Interesting. I'm not that familiar with 4E DS, but that sounds like a very bad change. The whole point with Dark Sun is that your own ancestors, together with people today, created this situation, and it's only people today and in the future who can fix it or even survive it. If you turn all that to an external deal where everyone is just a "victim" of beings that were never human, never people, it's a lot less compelling, and isn't the obvious analogy for climate change that Dark Sun has always functioned as. That'd be like making Vampire a game where didn't need to drink blood to survive or something.

In general I'd say settings/games that make the PCs part of the problem/solution, i.e. active participants, were much more compelling than ones which make the PCs into mere victims or tourists. I actually think this was long of the issues with Ravenloft as a setting (rather an adventure destination - tourism/victims is fine for an adventure, even a long one)

Keep in mind it says no one knows, and it gives other alternatives to Fyreen's predicament, like the dragons (sorcerer-kings) destroying the sun by accident, etc.
Sure but it still looks like an external thing, or purely non-humans were involved, which is very different from a culture gradually getting out of hand and destroying the planet, driving away or being abandoned by the gods, and so on. And almost all their suggestions (I can't even find the one you mention on the page) are purely external, they just shift the blame between gods and primordials.
 

You think it’s coincidence that the planet is named with a one syllable change from the original defenders of the core planet?
I absolutely do, yes.

It's Pepe Silvia mate.

But I do agree that it almost certainly was intended to be a take on Dark Sun, and the art they're calling a Ssuran Defiler was probably originally art for a low-stage dragon for Athas. I think their take on Athas was going to be REALLY AWFUL though, and they diverted at the last minute to preserve the IP.

1660224592631.png


Btw just to add my own conspiracy theory it's possible this whole thing was intentional pot-stirring by WotC, in an attempt to get more discussion of Spelljammer out there, and move the controversy away from "This is overpriced!" "It's just inflation!!!" to "THEY RUINED DARK SUN!" "NO THEY DIDN'T!"

But I doubt it. Because only serious nerds are going to be talking about this. I think this is genuinely a screw-up, and a last minute divert.
 

You guys have all read Dune.

I should know Arrakis and Geidi Prime change names over the course of the original 6 book series by the end. I think I'll take that angle for Fyreen and Athas.
 

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