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D&D General Here's That Official Dragonlance Novels Announcement, Featuring Classic Characters & An Old Logo!

We've known about it for a while due to lawsuits and product placeholder pages on Amazon, but Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman have just announced their new Dragonlance series of novels!


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It returns 'the most beloved characters from the original novels', as well as a 'new, strong protagonist'. Previous information from the lawsuit about this series indicated that the first book was to be called Dragons of Deceit, and the second Dragons of Fate. The Amazon placeholder page says the release date is 29th July 2021. Of course, any of that information may have changed.

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Original (classic) DL logo

new_dl.jpg

Later (Fifth Age) DL logo

The branding refers to "Classic Dragonlance" and uses the older, original (and my favourite) Dragonlance logo. Whether that in some way distinguishes it from any potential WotC Dragonlance materials remains to be seen. The logo changed in the 1990s, and continued to be used throughout the 3E era.

The news was shared on Twitter and on Tracy Hickman's website.

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 PRESS RELEASE


Wilmington, NC – January 25, 2021 – Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman are pleased to announce a multi-year licensing agreement with Wizards of the Coast to produce a new, three book series of Classic Dragonlance novels.

The new trilogy will return fans to the most beloved characters from the original novels along with introducing a new strong protagonist. The books will be published by Del Rey Books, an imprint of Penguin Random House. Although a publishing date has not yet been formally set, they anticipate announcing when the first book will be released later this year.

“We couldn’t be happier to be returning to the world we love,” says Margaret Weis. “Dragonlance is what brought Tracy and I together so many years ago. We’re thrilled to be able to do this for existing lovers of Krynn while bringing our beloved characters to a new generation of readers.”

The first Classic Dragonlance novel, Dragons of Autumn Twilight, was written by Weis and Hickman and published in 1984. Since that time, more than 190 novels have been published in the setting. Weis and Hickman have collaborated on numerous series over the last 30 years including projects set within the world of Classic Dragonlance and outside of it. Two notable series are The Death Gate Cycle and The Darksword Series, both published by Penguin Random House.

“We credit the fans of Dragonlance for making this journey possible,” says Tracy Hickman. “We wrote this series out of our thanks to them for this amazing life-long journey…and from our wish that they join us once more on the road to Solace.”
The license for the series was secured by Weis & Hickman in 2018. Their recent dispute with Wizards of the Coast was resolved at the end of 2020, with all parties pleased to have come to agreement on how best to move forward with the trilogy. All are focused on producing the best series possible and will not comment on the past dispute other than to say it has been resolved.

Watch for additional news from Weis and Hickman about Classic Dragonlance and other projects on the horizon in the coming months.
 

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Russ Morrissey

Russ Morrissey






Jaeger

That someone better.
Hickman and Weis sue WOTC in Oct, a company with big corporate $$ to defend itself against lawsuits; and now everything is good to go!?

That was Quick.

One gets the impression someone at WOTC got a metaphorical smack on the back of the head by someone higher up in the Hasbro corporate hierarchy...
 



Scribe

Hero
It returns 'the most beloved characters from the original novels', as well as a 'new, strong protagonist'.

Wonder how they are going to pull that off considering the story progression so far. Even with a huge retcon, that seems like we are going to need some time travel shenanigans...

Or is it set within the story timeframe?
 

AmerginLiath

Adventurer
There’s been a lot of debate over what the lawsuit was about, but the news on Del Rey (rather than Wizards resurrecting their own publishing imprint or Hasbro self-publishin) suggests something to me from my time in publishing. Because Dragonlance has both DL-specific content which Weis & Hickman have a claim in and D&D content that they and other authors have been able to use while TSR and WotC published the series themselves, any license to Del Rey/Penguin would have to closely negotiate which intellectual property of the game could be used and at what cost (think of how open content rules work, but just in prose instead of stat blocks). in addition to the actual ownership of Dragonlance, WotC would necessarily be considering how the “language” of D&D is being used (particularly in a setting heavily steeped in AD&D tropes).

in any case, I’m excited to see this.
 

Dire Bare

Legend
Supporter
Interesting.

Definitely looking forward to new Dragonlance novels, and hopefully new game books as well.

I think it's interesting that the new books won't be sequels to the War of Souls and Dark Disciple trilogies (the most recent major entries in Dragonlance's "Age of Mortals" storyline). But in double-checking my book titles, I realized that the final book of the Dark Disciples series was published in February of 2006! The "Lost Chronicles" that expanded the original story came after Dark Disciples, and the final book of that series hit the shelves in August of 2009. The very last Dragonlance novel published was "The Fate of Thorbardin" (Dwarf Home Trilogy Book 3) in January 2010.

It's been a while!

Will these new stories expand on the original story like the Lost Chronicles did? Or will they explore other chapters in the lives of the "Companions of the Lance" like the Meetings and Preludes series did?
 

Dire Bare

Legend
Supporter
There’s been a lot of debate over what the lawsuit was about, but the news on Del Rey (rather than Wizards resurrecting their own publishing imprint or Hasbro self-publishin) suggests something to me from my time in publishing. Because Dragonlance has both DL-specific content which Weis & Hickman have a claim in and D&D content that they and other authors have been able to use while TSR and WotC published the series themselves, any license to Del Rey/Penguin would have to closely negotiate which intellectual property of the game could be used and at what cost (think of how open content rules work, but just in prose instead of stat blocks). in addition to the actual ownership of Dragonlance, WotC would necessarily be considering how the “language” of D&D is being used (particularly in a setting heavily steeped in AD&D tropes).

in any case, I’m excited to see this.
Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman are, of course, the authors of the original Dragonlance Chronicles trilogy. However, they own ZERO PERCENT of the Dragonlance story and setting. The setting, story, and characters of Dragonlance were developed by in-house committee by TSR. Weis & Hickman were important members of that committee, but not the only ones, and TSR owns the Dragonlance IP lock, stock, and barrel. Or well, now WotC does, as they purchased TSR and all rights that went along with that.

WotC is going this interesting publishing route, granting a license to Weis & Hickman, and Del Rey, instead of publishing in-house like they used to . . . because they have simply decided they don't want to be in the novel publishing business anymore. This arrangement doesn't change the IP rights in any way, however.
 

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Joking aside, it's entirely possible that the new strong protagonist is a person that goes back in time to the War of the Lance to try to fix something or other.

Wonder how they are going to pull that off considering the story progression so far. Even with a huge retcon, that seems like we are going to need some time travel shenanigans...

Or is it set within the story timeframe?
 

The new trilogy will return fans to the most beloved characters, including kender?, from the original novels along with introducing a new weak strong protagonist.

Gotta go with a strong protagonist. Weak ones really grind my gears.
 



WotC is going this interesting publishing route, granting a license to Weis & Hickman, and Del Rey, instead of publishing in-house like they used to . . . because they have simply decided they don't want to be in the novel publishing business anymore. This arrangement doesn't change the IP rights in any way, however.
Which is kind of what they’ve done for a full trilogy (with a second one on the way) of Drizzt books now, right?
 


Dire Bare

Legend
Supporter
View attachment 131816

Joking aside, it's entirely possible that the new strong protagonist is a person that goes back in time to the War of the Lance to try to fix something or other.
I enjoyed the time travel stories . . . in the anthologies. And of course Legends was amazing. But I don't think I want to see time travel changing the War of the Lance. But hey, if the story is well done, W&H can do anything and I'll be on board.
 

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