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WotC Strixhaven sounds like it'd be a nice mini-setting for D&D

Well, I don't really agree that Strixhaven actually fits the evidence that much (beyond owlfolk, I don't think the UA actually matches Strixhaven much).

Right now my going theory is that this UA is for a July book that combines the dragon-themed and fey-themed UA into a Volo's/Mordenkainen's style monster book. The biggest break from the norm here would be that it would contain some class options, but I find that an easy jump to make if they are on-theme.
The 3E Draconomicon included a lot of player options. So it's just about which norm they're following.

It's certainly possible this is a monster book, but the combination of dragons and faeries doesn't feel like a natural one to me.

I understand -- and agree with -- the reasons it's unlikely to be Strixhaven, but couldn't this be Eldraine? Arthurian setting with faeries and dragons?
 

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Parmandur

Book-Friend
The 3E Draconomicon included a lot of player options. So it's just about which norm they're following.

It's certainly possible this is a monster book, but the combination of dragons and faeries doesn't feel like a natural one to me.

I understand -- and agree with -- the reasons it's unlikely to be Strixhaven, but couldn't this be Eldraine? Arthurian setting with faeries and dragons?
Eldraine would be quite perfect for a D&D treatment. worth noting as an aside, the main "viewpoint" characters from the Eldraine set are the new students and "viewpoint" characters in the Strixhaven story (such as it is).

However, that would be a violation of precedent in other ways: the Magic Settings so far have tied into the current Card game, though Theros was a little late due to the Pandemic. Doing a book for Eldraine this far out, with no return to Eldraine in sight, would be as odd in a way as doing a whole new Setting like Strixhaven.
 

Urriak Uruk

Debate fuels my Fire
The 3E Draconomicon included a lot of player options. So it's just about which norm they're following.

It's certainly possible this is a monster book, but the combination of dragons and faeries doesn't feel like a natural one to me.

I understand -- and agree with -- the reasons it's unlikely to be Strixhaven, but couldn't this be Eldraine? Arthurian setting with faeries and dragons?

Eldraine makes a lot more sense to me from a thematic view, but I do agree with @Parmandur that it would be odd for them to release that when there is no Eldraine card set incoming.

Now, just for fun, let's say that the Hasbro Overlords have demanded there must be cross-promotion between D&D and MTG. If that's the case, we've gotten;

  • Ravnica (2018)
  • Theros (2020)
  • Forgotten Realms Card-Set (2021)

I'm not certain that even if Hasbro is demanding more cross-promotion, that this means a MTG setting must come this year. The above pattern suggest maybe a MTG book every two years, and now we have a MTG card-set with a D&D setting, this would be a rapid ramp-up of crossed products.
 

cbwjm

Hero
There's definitely some sort of break of precedence brewing here, but that is a specialty of WotC lately.

To beat the dead horse, the points we have towards future D&D products right now:

UA Dragon Subclasses: a Monk who has learned mystical secrets from Dragons, and a Ranger who has a pet Drake and some Dragon themed powers. Strixhaven has Elder Dragons who run organizations of mortals to whom they have taught mystical secrets. We don't know much more than that about the Dragons in Strixhaven, but the material fits like a glove, while notably not fitting with any other Setting that I am aware of.
If looking specifically at MtG settings, the dragon UA content makes me think it is related more to a possible Tarkir setting.
 

Parmandur

Book-Friend
Eldraine makes a lot more sense to me from a thematic view, but I do agree with @Parmandur that it would be odd for them to release that when there is no Eldraine card set incoming.

Now, just for fun, let's say that the Hasbro Overlords have demanded there must be cross-promotion between D&D and MTG. If that's the case, we've gotten;

  • Ravnica (2018)
  • Theros (2020)
  • Forgotten Realms Card-Set (2021)

I'm not certain that even if Hasbro is demanding more cross-promotion, that this means a MTG setting must come this year. The above pattern suggest maybe a MTG book every two years, and now we have a MTG card-set with a D&D setting, this would be a rapid ramp-up of crossed products.
I don't think that Hasbro cares about whether they cross over or not, the initiative came from James Wyatt on the "front lines" so to speak. Though, based on what they've said, they are planning to ramp up collaboration, so time will tell.
 

Parmandur

Book-Friend
If looking specifically at MtG settings, the dragon UA content makes me think it is related more to a possible Tarkir setting.
I would agree, just taken in isolation. However, the timing of the Magic card Sets in combination with the Fey Lineages (which appear to be for the same book based on their standard development pipeline) make Tarkir seem implausible, given that none of the Fey portions fit Tarkir.
 

I'm not certain that even if Hasbro is demanding more cross-promotion, that this means a MTG setting must come this year. The above pattern suggest maybe a MTG book every two years, and now we have a MTG card-set with a D&D setting, this would be a rapid ramp-up of crossed products.
The Forgotten Realms set makes me wonder if there's finally going to be an entry level, larger-scale Forgotten Realms book coming this year. Give the MTG folks an easy on-ramp, since it's unlikely that all of them will know the older "Sword Coast" book is a Forgotten Realms book in the same way as, say, "Laeral Silverhand's Guide to the Forgotten Realms" might broadcast that. (I say Laeral, because WotC thought it would be worth putting her name on the dice set last year, rather than you know who.)
 
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I guess Eldrain will come back the next year, and this time also as the new setting, and also I think Hasbro wants a new D&D setting more family-friendly as hook for the new generations. Hasbro wants to sell their own BabyYoda/Grogu Gregory Frogeater toy. And I am surprised because they have said nothing about antropomorphic ponys. I guess it's a serious challenge to design a antropomorphic horse head, enough cute to sell dolls, but also enough cool and realistic for a tone more young adult.

26aef301a94bd5f139c621326017c4fe1f05d2d6.png


* I gifted "Tiny Dungeons" to my niece and when I ask her to create her first PC she choosed as race.....a (female) lizardfolk! I guess because after watching "Jurasic World" she loves dinosaurs.

Strixhaven has been designed as a hook for Harry Potter's fandom (and other titles as "the worst witch" or Disney's "Owl House"), and this is not wrong. The key is to create an interesting product, and here WotC's goal is to produce a rich lore enough open to allow homebred new stories by the own fandom.

* New species of dragons may broke easily the world building. Next to the giants they are one of the most powerful creatures. Even if they aren't conquerors or tyrants they can become traders diguised as humans... and they could controll the economy of complete countries.

I wonder about the dracolyte as a new class, with subclasses for each dragon (metallic, chromatic, planar, gem, lung..).

dcccaff41628843c71f26b126fa22cd6.jpg
 

I would also be curious to hear how Ravnica sold versus Theros. I don't play MTG and have no stake in either setting. But Theros had stuff that I immediately saw value in -- Hellenic D&D? Hell, yes. I bought the satyr race as a standalone purchase on D&D Beyond and, if there wasn't a 5E Ptolus coming in a few weeks, I would likely have talked myself into buying the whole book and using the leonin stats for Ptolus' litorians.

Ravnica doesn't have an obvious hook to me in the same way.

But other MTG settings, like Strixhaven or Eldraine? They have hooks I can understand at a glance and, unlike Innistrad, they cover settings that aren't already covered by D&D. (Yes, I know there's a bit of conceptual space between Innistrad and Ravenloft, but the Venn diagram of those two settings has a lot of overlap.)

If Theros sold dramatically better than Ravnica (and I never hear of anyone other than a single actual play podcast using Ravnica, for whatever that's worth), WotC may be looking at adding other flavors to officially supported D&D while also picking up whatever number of MTG fans who might come with them.

(I also think a MTG-facing starter box makes a lot of sense. Make that entry ramp as easy to get onto as possible.)
 
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Parmandur

Book-Friend
I would also be curious to hear how Ravnica sold versus Theros. I don't play MTG and have no stake in either setting. But Theros had stuff that I immediately saw value in -- Helenic D&D? Hell, yes. I bought the satyr race as a standalone purchase on D&D Beyond and, if there wasn't a 5E Ptolus coming in a few weeks, I would likely have talked myself into buying the whole book and using the leonin for the litorians.

Ravnica doesn't have an obvious hook to me in the same way.

But other MTG settings, like Strixhaven or Eldraine? They have hooks I can understand at a glance and, unlike Innistrad, they cover settings that aren't already covered by D&D. (Yes, I know there's a bit of conceptual space between Innistrad and Ravenloft, but the Venn diagram of those two settings has a lot of overlap.)

If Theros sold dramatically better than Ravnica (and I never hear of anyone other than a single actual play podcast using Ravnica, for whatever that's worth), WotC may be looking at adding other flavors to officially supported D&D while also picking up whatever number of MTG fans who might come with them.

(I also think a MTG-facing starter box makes a lot of sense. Make that entry ramp as easy to get onto as possible.)

Don't have exact numbers, obviously, but Ravnica is the single most popular Magic Setting among fans, by a wide margin for that matter, and it's pretty consistently selling well on Amazon. Right now, Theros is 2,708 in Books while Ravnica is 3,331. GGtR is outselling all of the Zelda art books, and other RPG games.
 

There's definitely some sort of break of precedence brewing here, but that is a specialty of WotC lately.

To beat the dead horse, the points we have towards future D&D products right now:

UA Dragon Subclasses: a Monk who has learned mystical secrets from Dragons, and a Ranger who has a pet Drake and some Dragon themed powers. Strixhaven has Elder Dragons who run organizations of mortals to whom they have taught mystical secrets. We don't know much more than that about the Dragons in Strixhaven, but the material fits like a glove, while notably not fitting with any other Setting that I am aware of.

Four Fey Lineage options in the recent UA.

- Fairies as a specifically named "Fairy" do not have much of a history in D&D at all...but they do in Magic. We don't know what Fairies will look like in Strixhaven particularly (because they have not yet detailed the Setting much at all), with two Green Houses I reckon they will be present. Magic has recently introduced larger Fairies, that would fit the Lineage description to a T.

View attachment 134235

- "Hobgoblins of the Feywild" notably deviate entirely from the established D&D story (though I'm there for it), but Magic Goblinoids are decidedly Fey. They vary from Plane to Plane, but there is a larger Goblinoid of some sort in one of the images we have. The powers of this Lineage fit with a strain of Magic Goblin from the broader history of the game:

View attachment 134236

- Owlfolk, pretty prominently featured in Strixhaven art so far, and they do not fit anything Owl related from D&D history...but work great as Owl Aven.

- Rabbitfolk don't have any history in D&D, and not much in Magic. We don't know if any Rabbits will show up in Strixhaven, but this is a recent Magic card of some interest:

View attachment 134237

I was really not expecting anything like Strixhaven before this UA, but...these six elements all fit in Strixhaven, at least in theory, while I don't see them working in other Settings at all. I'd be shocked if they put out a Strixhaven book, but I'd be shocked at anything they do with these options, frankly.
You make a very strong case.

I think a setting designed from scratch for Generation Potter for both MtG and D&D seems like a very marketable idea.
 


Magister Ludorum

Adventurer
If Theros sold dramatically better than Ravnica (and I never hear of anyone other than a single actual play podcast using Ravnica, for whatever that's worth), WotC may be looking at adding other flavors to officially supported D&D while also picking up whatever number of MTG fans who might come with them.
I don't run a game set in Ravnica, but I've pillaged so many things from Ravnica for my home brew games that it's always out when I'm doing design work.
 

I don't run a game set in Ravnica, but I've pillaged so many things from Ravnica for my home brew games that it's always out when I'm doing design work.
Scrolling how many things are available to buy separately from it on D&D Beyond, there's obviously a lot of stuff to swipe out of it. Even if it just had minotaurs and centaur, I can see the book appealing to a lot of people.
 

Parmandur

Book-Friend
Scrolling how many things are available to buy separately from it on D&D Beyond, there's obviously a lot of stuff to swipe out of it. Even if it just had minotaurs and centaur, I can see the book appealing to a lot of people.

The organization standing rules expansion is pretty cool, and the DMG Chapter 5 random table expansions (also by James Wyatt) are fantastic. Crawford said the Bestiary is actually nearly as long as Mordenkeinen's, and I believe it.
 

Parmandur

Book-Friend
Just to stir the pot, Mark Rosewater gave some creature teases for what's in the Strixhaven Set, and anthropomorphic animals seem to be a theme:

• Creature – Turtle Druid

• Creature – Bird Warlock

• Creature – Frog Wizard

• Creature – Spirit Dwarf

• Creature – Troll Druid

• Creature – Eye Bat

• Legendary Creature – Vampire Warlock

• Legendary Creature – Orc Shaman

• Legendary Creature – Dryad Druid

• Legendary Artifact Creature – Construct
 

eyeheartawk

Works 60% of the time, every time
I guess Eldrain will come back the next year, and this time also as the new setting, and also I think Hasbro wants a new D&D setting more family-friendly as hook for the new generations. Hasbro wants to sell their own BabyYoda/Grogu Gregory Frogeater toy. And I am surprised because they have said nothing about antropomorphic ponys. I guess it's a serious challenge to design a antropomorphic horse head, enough cute to sell dolls, but also enough cool and realistic for a tone more young adult.

26aef301a94bd5f139c621326017c4fe1f05d2d6.png


* I gifted "Tiny Dungeons" to my niece and when I ask her to create her first PC she choosed as race.....a (female) lizardfolk! I guess because after watching "Jurasic World" she loves dinosaurs.

Strixhaven has been designed as a hook for Harry Potter's fandom (and other titles as "the worst witch" or Disney's "Owl House"), and this is not wrong. The key is to create an interesting product, and here WotC's goal is to produce a rich lore enough open to allow homebred new stories by the own fandom.

* New species of dragons may broke easily the world building. Next to the giants they are one of the most powerful creatures. Even if they aren't conquerors or tyrants they can become traders diguised as humans... and they could controll the economy of complete countries.

I wonder about the dracolyte as a new class, with subclasses for each dragon (metallic, chromatic, planar, gem, lung..).

dcccaff41628843c71f26b126fa22cd6.jpg
Do you think they would combine this idea with a D20 Modern revival? That would be a real treat.
 

My opinion is after to create the ultimate D&D system Wizards wants to create the ultimate d20 system for all the genres: survival horror, pulp, sci-fi, superheroes... but here the challenge is to find a right power balance when the PCs can become too powerful with high-tech gadgets. Let's remember Resident Evil or Evil Within when the PCs is too weak and he has to hide and when he finds enough weapons and ammo to be an one-man-army.

A d20 sci-fi RPG is totally possible, of course, and Star Wars d20 is one of the best examples, but to design a d20 Modern 2.0. 100% retrocompatible with D&D 5th Ed is a too radical challenge for game designers. If you try a "crossover" with the adaptation of different franchises you can notice d20 Street Fighters can't defeat d20 Overwatch team, or fighters from d20 Mortal Kombat couldn't survive easily an invasion of monsters from d20 Doom. Do you remember the mecha B.R.U.T.E. in Fortnite: Battle Royal? A dinosaur could be a serious challenge for Conan the Barbarian, king Arthur or Tarzan, but Flash Gordon or Buck Rogers only would need a shot by his ray-gun. In the first movie "Alien: the eight passenger" one xenomorph was enough to kill almost all Nostromo's crew, but in the sequel they could kill dozens, maybe hundreds, from other room thanks the "sentinel turrets". And if Hasbro wants to sell sci-fi d20 videogames then the playtesting has to be harder because the number of munchkins trying to find all potential weak points for powergaming is higher.

It is not a little strange? Hasbro partnered Renegade Game Studio to publish d20 TTRPGs of their famous franchises: (Power Rangers, My Little Pony, Transformers, G.I.Joe) instead asking Wizards to do that work. It was as if this was too busy with their own plans.

After D&D the next step will be a new edition of Gamma World with lots of antropomorphic animals, because this would allow to produce a family-friendly cartoon and selling toys.
 

Urriak Uruk

Debate fuels my Fire
My opinion is after to create the ultimate D&D system Wizards wants to create the ultimate d20 system for all the genres: survival horror, pulp, sci-fi, superheroes... but here the challenge is to find a right power balance when the PCs can become too powerful with high-tech gadgets. Let's remember Resident Evil or Evil Within when the PCs is too weak and he has to hide and when he finds enough weapons and ammo to be an one-man-army.

You've been saying this for what, five years? When do you think this "ultimate d20 system" is actually going to drop?
 


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