I have never let Canon control how I ran the Forgotten Realms. At the start of a new FR campaign I tell my players that this is "loosely based on the Forgotten Realms" to nip the whole "but according to Novel X this happens!" in the bud.
I don't get the High Level NPC hate. Grey Hawk has the Circle of Eight, all uber-level Mages, but I have never seen anybody bash Mordenkainen's little clique. Don't like The Chosen of Mystra or Drizzt? Don't use them in your campaign! The only time any of my games has shown that Drizzt even exists was a very brief cameo appearance. I have used Elminster to hire the PCs (whole mysterious old man with a quest thing), but he doesn't show up to save the PCs or anything like that. The uber-NPCs are just background, and usually distant background.
Catching up to Elminster? Who cares. Your campaign should be about your player's PCs, If Elminster is stealing the show that is your failure, not Ed Greenwood's for including Elminster in the campaign setting in the first place.
No, I meant I am fine with any point up from 1E to the end of 3E for a relaunch. Even the ToT, for all the hamfisted "new rules, new world" changes it brought, was not as bad as the 4E debacle.
Oh, fair enough. I think I would prefer an official reboot. However I have enough older materials to run during Netheril (the real Netheril, not the 4e version
), The Fall of Netheril, the height of Cormanthor, Fall of Myth Drannor, The Grey Box (1e), Post Time of Trials (2e), The Return of Bane (3e)... and if I wanted to even the Spellplague (4e).
I would love to see a Forgotten Realms where Ed is at the helm, especially if they reboot the setting and roll it back to a prior edition before 3rd edition. In fact, that would be a deal breaker if they didn't, as I did not support the changes they made to the setting post 3rd edition.
Holy crap! Its Talath!!
edit: for that matter, if I happen to run a Star Wars campaign the setting is only loosely based on that universe. The Skywalkers may exist, but they are not the focus of my storylines. I enjoy Lucas' broad picture, but some of the little fiddly stuff I'd rather ignore (The heroes from the movies, especially the Skywalkers, The Rule of Two, etc).