D&D General Forgotten Realms fans, what do you like most about the setting?

I think the biggest appeal to me is nostalgia. There might not be anything truly special about it, but due to many hours of my youth spent with video games set in the Forgotten Realsm (Baldur's Gate, Icewind Dale, Eye of the Beholder) and many more hours spent with FR novels (with and without a certain dark elf), visiting iconic locations of the Realms always feels a bit like coming home.
 

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aco175

Legend
Part of it is that I got used to it as a kid and now I know all the history and gods and stuff that it easy to run. I can keep parts that I want and build a campaign around that. There is a lot of detail from people over time and I can still use the 2e books and names and stuff in my new game and my players do not know how much or little time I spent on world building vs campaign building.

I could and have built my own world and such but it is not as good as a published world. I could make my own NPCs but I can save the time by using those already published.

The reading books were great as a kid and I still read one of the Drizzt books on vacation or something. They helped form the images of the world in my games that I can still stay with.
 

I went to Toys-R-Us with birthday money to spend. There they had Mentzer Basic and Expert boxed sets. Beside them was a campaign setting boxed set called Forgotten Realms. I bought all three and went home ready to read everything. I learned what Dungeons and Dragons was from those 3 boxed sets. It is quintessential to what I think of when I think of D&D.
 

R_J_K75

Legend
Starting in Shadowdale to run the Sword of the Dales trilogy/Doom of Daggerdale
I ran this exact arc in 96 or 97. We started with the Sword of the Dales Trilogy then the Doom of Daggerdale. IIRC there is an Inn outside of Daggerdale called "the Rusty Nail" which was an inside joke for reasons I can't post here. I still laugh when I think about it. It was funny because as soon as the group rescued Randal Morn at the end of the Dales Trilogy, he immediately got recaptured at the beginning of the Doom of Daggerdale so that was the running joke of the group was how inept Randal Morn was.
 

Parmandur

Book-Friend
I like that it has origins outside of and prior to D&D, followed by a layer of actual home games. No Setting generated for commercial purposes can really recreate that artifical vibe. It is free to be generic

I am a bit of a weird FR fan, since I really only started becoming familiar with it through 5E products and then going back into 1E products via the DMsGuild, and have found myself becoming something of an Originalist. I prefer to ignore pretty much the entire metaplot.after the Grey Box, but also to use the 3E FRCS and SCAG along with that 1E era framework, to create my own Frankenstein alternate timeline. I think the Srtring started going sideways once other writers stsrted inserting real world analogs like "Ancient Egypt Land" or "Fantasy China" so I will ignore pretty much anything outside the smaller maps geom the Grey Box as irrelevant. Which Es Greenwood said I can do in like, every single book intro, but it makes discussions of "canon" pretty weird.
 

TheSword

Legend
I ran this exact arc in 96 or 97. We started with the Sword of the Dales Trilogy then the Doom of Daggerdale. IIRC there is an Inn outside of Daggerdale called "the Rusty Nail" which was an inside joke for reasons I can't post here. I still laugh when I think about it. It was funny because as soon as the group rescued Randal Morn at the end of the Dales Trilogy, he immediately got recaptured at the beginning of the Doom of Daggerdale so that was the running joke of the group was how inept Randal Morn was.
I personally think Doom of Daggerdale is one of the best and underrated modules every produced for D&D.

It has it all: Overt threat from the Zhents & subtle growing threat from Coledan. Mystery (The sleeping sickness). A starting base of operations (Daggerfalls). Plus multiple dungeon locations (Eagle’s Eerie and the Underdark/Tomb) linked through the story. The NPCs are memorable too - Constable Tren, Coledan, Eragyn, Fulgath the merchant.

I think Randal Morn could be hammed up as a pretty incompetent version of Robin Hood. Who’s men are well meaning but pretty lacking in initiative.
 

Parmandur

Book-Friend
I personally think Doom of Daggerdale is one of the best and underrated modules every produced for D&D.

It has it all: Overt threat from the Zhents & subtle growing threat from Coledan. Mystery (The sleeping sickness). A starting base of operations (Daggerfalls). Plus multiple dungeon locations (Eagle’s Eerie and the Underdark/Tomb) linked through the story. The NPCs are memorable too - Constable Tren, Coledan, Eragyn, Fulgath the merchant.

I think Randal Morn could be hammed up as a pretty incompetent version of Robin Hood. Who’s men are well meaning but pretty lacking in initiative.
You know, it is interesting, despite there being plenty of printed FR Adventures, they don't really seem to get talked about much until the 5E Campaogn books, but thst might just be 2E Modules not being fondly remembered in general?
 

TheSword

Legend
I like that it has origins outside of and prior to D&D, followed by a layer of actual home games. No Setting generated for commercial purposes can really recreate that artifical vibe. It is free to be generic

I am a bit of a weird FR fan, since I really only started becoming familiar with it through 5E products and then going back into 1E products via the DMsGuild, and have found myself becoming something of an Originalist. I prefer to ignore pretty much the entire metaplot.after the Grey Box, but also to use the 3E FRCS and SCAG along with that 1E era framework, to create my own Frankenstein alternate timeline. I think the Srtring started going sideways once other writers stsrted inserting real world analogs like "Ancient Egypt Land" or "Fantasy China" so I will ignore pretty much anything outside the smaller maps geom the Grey Box as irrelevant. Which Es Greenwood said I can do in like, every single book intro, but it makes discussions of "canon" pretty weird.
FR works best when you tweak it and aren’t beholden to it!

Highlights for me:

The Dalelands - Particulary Shadowdale, Daggerdale and Mistledale.

The Bloodstone Lands - bloody and bleak

Waterdeep and Undermountain -
 

Xamnam

Loves Your Favorite Game
The connection to the history of the hobby it provides, and the sheer scope and depth of information available. Even if there's not 5e material, so much is readily accessible. For the last character I built, I was able to pull from Dragon Magazine a whole article just about Mithrendain, which I had landed on as his most recent stay, and that gave me a ton of context to pull from and build off of, and then use Heroes of the Feywild to generate what had led him to find and reside there.

And now that I've played in it for some time, I'm able to inhabit character that are much more confident about their knowledge of the world. It's fantastic to be the party member who recognizes the emblem of the Zhentarim and can warn the others, or be exhausted preemptively when they hear we need to head all the way up to Citadel Adbar.

On top of that, it lands perfectly for me in the niche of: built on heaps of classic fantasy tropes with just enough weird, unique aspects to make it memorable.
 

Parmandur

Book-Friend
FR works best when you tweak it and aren’t beholden to it!

Highlights for me:

The Dalelands - Particulary Shadowdale, Daggerdale and Mistledale.

The Bloodstone Lands - bloody and bleak

Waterdeep and Undermountain -
One thing I majorly.appreciate about what I consider the "real" Forgotten Realms (that is, where Greenwood wrote stories and played games in earnest: the Savage Frontier and the Heartlands) is hiw the cities and cultures are definitely not real.world analogs: Waterdeep is not London or Amsterdam or Venice. The Moonsea region is not Not-Scandanavia or Not-Russia or Not-Anything. Coromyr is a functional monarchies state, but it is not Not-France or Not-England or Not-Poland.

But boy did TSR mess that up as fast as they could.
 

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