D&D General What *is* D&D? (mild movie spoilers)

Micah Sweet

Level Up & OSR Enthusiast
The Circle of Eight, Iuz, and bunch others beg to differ with you.


High psionics, then.


You mean the setting where there's an entire continent ruled by a council of a thousand 36th-level magic-users?
I and others have made this point already. You are looking at this from the wrong perspective if your goal is to understand my argument, rather than merely argue against it. There is a difference between a world where highly magical things exist and can be encountered (like just about every setting) and a world in which the magical suffuses everything, such that it's all around you all the time, like the FR as depicted in the film. Both are D&D, the second one is just a lot more common nowadays. And that's fine. But to say things have always been this way is rewriting history.
 

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Whizbang Dustyboots

Gnometown Hero
I and others have made this point already. You are looking at this from the wrong perspective if your goal is to understand my argument, rather than merely argue against it. There is a difference between a world where highly magical things exist and can be encountered (like just about every setting) and a world in which the magical suffuses everything, such that it's all around you all the time, like the FR as depicted in the film. Both are D&D, the second one is just a lot more common nowadays. And that's fine. But to say things have always been this way is rewriting history.
"Nowadays" is doing a lot of work here.

Voyage of the Princess Ark debuted 33 years ago, six years after Principalities of Glantri statted up a kingdom of magic-users. Players have been able to hang out in the Wonderland Dungeonland home of a quasi-diety who uses six-shooters for 40 years as of this year.

D&D has been high magic longer than it hasn't been.
 


Minigiant

Legend
Supporter
One the high magic front, without doing spoilers, the movie leans HARD on magic items.

If your version of D&D lacks magic items, I struggle to recognize it as base assumption D&D.

If there is anything WOTC can brand it's all the collectable magic items in a setting. No other major fantasy media or setting sphere floods it's world with them like D&D.
 

Micah Sweet

Level Up & OSR Enthusiast
"Nowadays" is doing a lot of work here.

Voyage of the Princess Ark debuted 33 years ago, six years after Principalities of Glantri statted up a kingdom of magic-users. Players have been able to hang out in the Wonderland Dungeonland home of a quasi-diety who uses six-shooters for 40 years as of this year.

D&D has been high magic longer than it hasn't been.
Again, high magic stuff has been part of D&D forever, but it wasn't  everywhere you look. I and others made this point more than once above. Giving me more examples of high magic stuff isn't refuting my point.
 

Micah Sweet

Level Up & OSR Enthusiast
One the high magic front, without doing spoilers, the movie leans HARD on magic items.

If your version of D&D lacks magic items, I struggle to recognize it as base assumption D&D.

If there is anything WOTC can brand it's all the collectable magic items in a setting. No other major fantasy media or setting sphere floods it's world with them like D&D.
There is a place between leaning  HARD on magic items and lacking them entirely. We don't have to go to extremes.
 

dave2008

Legend
Again, high magic stuff has been part of D&D forever, but it wasn't  everywhere you look. I and others made this point more than once above. Giving me more examples of high magic stuff isn't refuting my point.
I think the point is people experienced it differently. Some people played 1e with magic everywhere and others didn't. Personally we have always played in a low magic setting starting with 1e/BECMI, then 4e, and now 5e. D&D has always been and always will be low magic to me.

EDIT: there was an exception at the end of one of our 1e campaigns the PCs traveled to a hidden continent ruled by dragons. That place had magic everywhere!
 
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Whizbang Dustyboots

Gnometown Hero
Again, high magic stuff has been part of D&D forever, but it wasn't  everywhere you look. I and others made this point more than once above. Giving me more examples of high magic stuff isn't refuting my point.
If you have multiple countries that are super-high magic, and you can't even reliably look at the sky for fear of seeing high magic, I think you're stretching the definition of "everywhere," at last as far as Mystara and Krynn. (Krynn has at least one flying castle and ubiquitous dragons, whenever you don't have gods lobbing meteorites at cities.)

D&D was certainly low magic for a brief, fondly remembered period, but I would say that period ended in the early to mid 1980s. The outrage of "this isn't my D&D" is extremely late.
 

Whizbang Dustyboots

Gnometown Hero
I think the point is people experienced it differently. Some people play 1e with magic everywhere and others didn't. Personally we have always played in a low magic setting starting with 1e/BECMI, then 4e, and now 5e. D&D has always been and always will be low magic to me.
Yeah, the movie's version of the Forgotten Realms is much, much higher magic than I'm comfortable with in my Ptolus campaign. I feel the same way about 99% of the actual play campaigns l watch or listen to.

But I also concede that higher magic levels are extremely common. I recall very few people objecting to The Adventure Zone having fantasy race cars and a fantasy train, for instance, or a giant floating telepathic jellyfish as a prominent recurring NPC, all of which were way over the line for me.
 

Minigiant

Legend
Supporter
There is a place between leaning  HARD on magic items and lacking them entirely. We don't have to go to extremes.
Leaning HARD on magic items feels very D&D.

You delve into Dungeons to get treasure and you get magic items to get more treasure. Then you get more magic items and slay or avoid the dragon to get more treasure.

Whether you are a whole bunch of nonmagical humans or a group half comprised of spellcaster or the party is touched by magic in ever member, it they don't die horribly early magic items is often in the mix as a base assumption.
 

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