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5E Is the new setting Icewind Dale?

Russ Morrissey

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Matrix Sorcica

Adventurer
For getting up to speed on the Crystal Shard, besides watching the informative YouTube lore video linked above, what would you recommend - reading the trilogy, or can I do with the comic. I'm not much of a drizz't fan, but am told the original trilogy is actually good.
Or should I go all in, read everything and play Icewind Dale etc.? :geek:

I own and have read legacy of the crystal shard.
 

For getting up to speed on the Crystal Shard, besides watching the informative YouTube lore video linked above, what would you recommend - reading the trilogy, or can I do with the comic. I'm not much of a drizz't fan, but am told the original trilogy is actually good.
Or should I go all in, read everything and play Icewind Dale etc.? :geek:

I own and have read legacy of the crystal shard.
The original novel "The Crystal Shard" isn't bad, and is relevant the CRPG (although that doesn't become append until the end). So, read the one novel and play the CRPG. If I remember correctly, the CRPG occurs first in strict chronological order.

NB Drizzt isn't in the Icewind Dale CRPG. He is in Baldur's Gate and it's sequel though.
 

I guessed a sourcebook about Icewind Dale would be published near of the videogame "Dark Alliance". A region within Forgotten Realms isn't really a new setting. Even spin-of as Kara-Tur and Maztica, or Red Steel and Hollow World in Mystara, aren't really independient settings.
 

I love Icewind Dale, but at the same time I feel, I don't know, a little underwhelmed. I'm sure the nostalgia quotient will pick up for me as an actual release date gets close.
Yeah, I'm with you here. Also, if IWD/the North of the Western FR is an entire setting-book, rather than a large/epic adventure/series of adventures, I'm going to be very disappointed with WotC, frankly.

If Icewind Dale is the new setting being teased, they aren't trying to mess with us, and this isn't a "PR flub" as another poster claims. D&D superfans like us here on ENWorld think of "setting" as entirely separate "campaign settings" like Dark Sun and the Realms, but the D&D team is marketing to a much larger demographic these days then just us lifers.
You are really reaching here, and getting into some pretty silly territory, as a result, frankly. You're sneering at "lifers" and "superfans", and so on, but what you're describing has been pretty normal through D&D's history - which is to say, presenting an area of a setting as a setting. Whether it's an entire continent, like Maztica or Taladas, or just a region, like the Savage Coast, it hasn't been uncommon or unheard-of, and you're acting like it is. Trouble is, it's been historically unsuccessful. Most of the products which took that approach were somewhere between a flop and a moderate success, and most of them are largely forgotten.

Also, you talk about a "much larger demographic", but you seem to think said demographic is going to be hugely excited an entire setting, which they too are going to immediately realize is basically just the FR equivalent of Canada (with a bit of other stuff thrown in). And frankly I am very skeptical of this. My prediction is that, on the 5E subreddit, if WotC does present IWD/The North of the FR as an actual setting-book, not a huge adventure/adventure-series set there, people are not going to be impressed.

And they are far more representative of the "larger demographic" you're discussing than us.

All that said, I very much doubt "The North of the FR", let alone a region as relatively small as IWD actually is the next new setting book announced. I strongly suspect it is just a very big adventure, like Dragon Heist or the like. And the wider audience does love such adventures a lot more than we do here, so it makes sense to hype them.

If they are doing IWD in any format, I'll be interested to know if they've involved any of the game designers/writers who worked on the games. I know Josh Sawyer has been working on a product he can't discuss for a while, and it doesn't sound like a large-scale deal, so maybe.
 

Coroc

Hero
For getting up to speed on the Crystal Shard, besides watching the informative YouTube lore video linked above, what would you recommend - reading the trilogy, or can I do with the comic. I'm not much of a drizz't fan, but am told the original trilogy is actually good.
Or should I go all in, read everything and play Icewind Dale etc.? :geek:

I own and have read legacy of the crystal shard.
the first 5 books or so of each trilogy are actually quite good. For some of the following you have to be quite a fanboy.


Spoiler: Drizzt gets so reknown for his good deeds, that he is not subject to stereotype judgement anymore for most of FR folks and their mother seem to know of him.
That is one part of the story which i always found difficult to swallow.
 

Oofta

Title? I don't need no stinkin' title.
the first 5 books or so of each trilogy are actually quite good. For some of the following you have to be quite a fanboy.


Spoiler: Drizzt gets so reknown for his good deeds, that he is not subject to stereotype judgement anymore for most of FR folks and their mother seem to know of him.
That is one part of the story which i always found difficult to swallow.
Yeah, some out-of-the-place village where people have probably never traveled more than 20 miles from home and then only for a festival almost always recognize the guy on sight. Can tell that it's Drizzt and not some random drow come to murder them in their sleep.

Well, that and the never ending emo "woe is me" stuff that permeated later books is why I stopped reading them. It's made quite clear in the books that most interaction throughout history with drow is when they do surface raids and kill everyone in sight or take them as slaves never to be seen again. Then he's all "Whaaaa? Why are people prejudiced against drow?"

Not justifying prejudice, but the level he typically faces is mainly reasonable wariness about a stranger. Not to mention that he looks like a historic enemy.
 



SuperTD

Explorer
I don't know much about Icewind Dale, but i remember Chris talked in a podcast about doing writeups of towns, populations, heraldry, leaders, rivals etc for the gazetteer section in a forthcoming book. Is that the sort of thing that would make sense for an Icewind Dale setting?
 

Xenonnonex

Adventurer
I don't know much about Icewind Dale, but i remember Chris talked in a podcast about doing writeups of towns, populations, heraldry, leaders, rivals etc for the gazetteer section in a forthcoming book. Is that the sort of thing that would make sense for an Icewind Dale setting?
Frankly that would work well for any setting.
 

I don't know much about Icewind Dale, but i remember Chris talked in a podcast about doing writeups of towns, populations, heraldry, leaders, rivals etc for the gazetteer section in a forthcoming book. Is that the sort of thing that would make sense for an Icewind Dale setting?
Yes. Previous sources haven't really gone into heraldry for the Ten Towns, but no reason they shouldn't each get a logo!

And I think I need to draw people's attention to the word section. It is not the whole book.
 
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vincegetorix

Jewel of the North
I don't know much about Icewind Dale, but i remember Chris talked in a podcast about doing writeups of towns, populations, heraldry, leaders, rivals etc for the gazetteer section in a forthcoming book. Is that the sort of thing that would make sense for an Icewind Dale setting?
The main population of the Dale is composed of humans living in Ten-Towns aka an alliance on 10 small-ish towns spread across the dale, each fighting for the meager resources of the lakes and land while standing together against the giants, orcs & co, lizardfolk colonies living in the heated depths etc. The mentioned writeups would be right on spot for this setting.
 

Yeah, some out-of-the-place village where people have probably never traveled more than 20 miles from home and then only for a festival almost always recognize the guy on sight. Can tell that it's Drizzt and not some random drow come to murder them in their sleep.
To be fair, Jarlaxle has taken advantage of that on more than one occasion by impersonating Drizzt.
 

Marandahir

Crown-Forester
Well, this is still taking place well before Theros is in people's hands, and at least Perkins game at the event is going to be set in Theros...so that maaaay be what is meant....
The "new setting" revealed cannot be Theros, because anyone with a D&D Beyond account can use that setting as of June 2nd. The hardcover may still be to come in July due to COVID-19, but it can hardly be called a "new setting" that we'll "learn all about."

I'm pretty sure the announcement is for an adventure in a new setting, not an adventure and a new setting.

We have already got two setting books this year, I would consider a third incredibly unlikely.
"Fans of D&D will learn all about the new setting and storyline as well as accompanying new products plus tons of unique gameplay available on June 18, 2020."

The language is very unclear. That said, in 2018 and 2019, WotC switched to releasing 4 new D&D books a year, rather than the 3 new books of 2015, 2016, and 2017 (not counting starter sets or remasters like the Core Rules box set or Tyranny of Dragons).

We know what 2 of those new books are for 2020, Wildemount and Theros. WotC suggested that fans desiring new setting books would love 2020, so I think there's good latitude to believe that this stream is going to announce two separate products.

That said, COVID-19 could have derailed plans for 4 new hardcover products this year, so maybe Icewind Dale is what they're referring to. I'd just argue that the language is vague and could be interpreted either way.

I also think calling Icewind Dale a setting is like calling Harkenwold a Setting. Yeah, sure, you can go in deeper on this glossed over area of the Nentir Vale, but the Nentir Vale already is a subset of the former Nerath Empire setting, which is a subset of the Conquest of Nerath campaign world, and was designed as such to be just the basic details so that you could make it your own. Icewind Dale is a subset of the Sword Coast, which is a subset of Faerûn, which is a subset of Abeir-Toril, similarly… It's a deep dive on one particular place. A cool place, but much more appropriate for an included gazateer in an adventure path, like how Descent into Avernus gives us the deets on Baldur's Gate, and Dragon Heist gives us the deets on Waterdeep.

Legit question to anyone with a better memory than me: did WotC ever call Chuult a "new setting" when discussing Tomb of Annihilation?
 
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Oofta

Title? I don't need no stinkin' title.
I have an idea for a setting. It takes place in the cellar under a tavern. It’s an epic tale about the eternal conflict between good folk and, well, rats.

The twist is that it’s not just for 1st level characters: it’s a full 1-20 campaign.

Whaddya think? Kickstart it?
You could do like some video games and scale all the rats to the appropriate level so no matter what they do a half dozen rats will always be a threat.

So much depth and opportunity available there I may have to steal this for my next campaign.
 

I have an idea for a setting. It takes place in the cellar under a tavern. It’s an epic tale about the eternal conflict between good folk and, well, rats.

The twist is that it’s not just for 1st level characters: it’s a full 1-20 campaign.

Whaddya think? Kickstart it?
The twist is, the PCs are the rats, who have to fight of waves of increasingly higher level adventurers.
 

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