I'm curious, who owns the rights to all the LG mods? From your description, it doesn't sound like WotC owns any LG material except for the LGG.
From what I recall, WotC owns only the CORE Living Greyhawk material. All of the other Regional material is owned by the people who wrote it. WotC has already expressed that they have no interest in purchasing that material from *each an every individual author*, and so they will likely never be using it.
So, there's about as much chance of WotC publishing any non-CORE Living Greyhawk material as part of future Greyhawk products as there is of babies being issued concealed weapon permits(excepting the state of Texas of course).
Sorry to say, but people need to get over the whole "Living Greyhawk MUST be included in future Greyhawk products or I won't buy it!" idea. If you set an impossible requirement for your happiness, you will definitely not be happy.
If I have misstated something, hopefully somebody that knows a bit more about the particulars of the ownership of Living Greyhawk material will correct me. Ah! Here are the particulars(with thanks to Saracenus):
The short answer (an answer given in several other threads previously, yes this topic rears its head about every 4 to 6 months) is no, there will not be an official published Living Greyhawk summary, nor will the mods and background generated for it be allowed to be used.
Here is why:
1) WotC only purchased all mods until year 2 when a dispute over a module in the Duchy of Urnst (leading to it being pulled by the author). After that only Core mods where purchased.
2) Those regional and meta-regional modules (year two and later) that were not purchased are the property of the authors.
3) The websites are a melange of purchased and author owned material that is nearly impossible to properly attribute to the original author(s). And really until it was published in a module or official campaign guide (regional, meta-regional, mini-campaign, or LGCS) it really wasn't LG canon until it was.
4) There is no central repository of Living Greyhawk material and to compile it would take a bizillian years to sift and sort.
So, don't expect that LG will ever be part of an official 4e Greyhawk campaign. The only way it would be used is if one of the authors used their own material or the WotC purchased stuff.
So you have no worries about LG infecting the "official" canon.
I'm not sure how a City of Greyhawk / Greyhawk Ruins campaign would fit into 4E's Points of Light though as Greyhawk is a cosmopolitan metropolis.
So is Waterdeep, and it ends up working fine, at least in 4E RPGA, which is the only place I've dealt with it.
To be honest, 4E is truer to the intent of 1E than 3.5 ever was. Sorry, its just how I see it, but no one has to agree with me. Is it more powerful? Yes. Is it unnecessarily more powerful. Again, yes. Is it simple to learn and play? Yes. My wife, who could easily grasp the intricities of 3.5 spell casters, particularly clerics and artificers (which is pretty much as hard as it gets in 3.5), prefers 4E because it is more straightforward and you spend less time refueling. Resource management is much easier for players to grasp. I'm in the process of doing what I said I wasn't going to do, and converting my Secret of Saltmarsh game to 4E, because it will end up being easier to write encounters for, and I don't have to deal with "go three rooms and rest" like I do in 3.5. And because of the minion rule I can throw huge numbers of enemies at them with the knowledge they will be able to survive, and have stories of surviving the "hordes" of foes set before them.
As for the reboot to 576, I was already going back that early, so no harm no foul for me, and I intended to cherry pick through what happened for how to evolve "my" Greyhawk, as does pretty much every Greyhawk DM, and nothing is really going to change about that anyway.
As for the piecemeal approach to Greyhawk, aside from the core books for Greyhawk 4E (CS, PG, Adventure series), I see it being all there is goign to be, and like it or not, its what we'll get. I don't necessarily agree with it, but its where its headed. Thankfully its not that hard to ignore the "core" cosmology, so I don't really lose out on anything if I decide I don't want to use the Astral Sea cosmology, as opposed to the great wheel, or the crystal sphere cosmology of spelljammer (which I think I may end up with, because my players would enjoy it more)
Not a very "Living" campaign if it dies in the end.
Most living things do.
I think a 576 reboot is a pretty good idea, neatly avoiding the question of whether or not the events of the popular Living Greyhawk campaign are canon as well as avoiding the whole debate over whether certain aspects of the setting (Iuz, Vecna, the Scarlet Brotherhood) were overplayed or defanged in subsequent works. Even the schism between the official and Gord the Rogue timelines hasn't yet erupted. It brings us back closer to a setting that all the fractured fans of the setting can agree is unquestionably Greyhawk. I say this as a huge fan of Sargent's contributions, and as a fan of Paizo's contributions. As others have said, this doesn't decanonize future developments; it only defers them. What's more, many later works develop setting elements that are very much in existence in 576 CY, so it's not like they won't be referred to at all.
I like 576 CY. Back then, the Circle of Eight included Otiluke and Bucknard, villains like Kyuss and Demogorgon hadn't yet been exhausted by the Dungeon Adventure Paths, and the descriptions of the NPCs in Greyhawk Adventures were all up to date.
I'm not a fan at all of changing setting elements (Celene, the planes) in order to shoehorn the setting into the default 4e mode. I think making different campaign settings genuinely different from one another is a very good thing, and the "retro" feel is one of Greyhawk's strengths. So make it retro! Give it 17 outer planes and 18 inner planes, or make it even more retro and use the earlier cosmology defined in the original DMG. Give us classic grey elves, hobbits, and gnomes. But I understand the reasons that WotC will likely not choose this route. For one thing, the more space spent on explaining "retro" races and cosmology, the less room available for describing the nations, history, and gods of the Flanaess.
maybe they try to do something that attract new gamers (the WoWesque d&d gamers) and old timers, but how to do this....well, thats a big question
Well the biggest draw for new players to 4E is that the game is still DnD and yet much easier to learn, and therefore easier to get into. If they combine that with quality writing (OK, so I can DREAM!), then we're good. Most gamers don't give one rat's whisker about the game material as long as the book is well written, relavent, and contains information that is useful to everyone. If they keep with their current model, we should get at least one of those, possibly two, and if we're REALLY lucky, all three.
Obviously, I like the new system, that said, they could seriously use some help with their writing - its TOO general. Of course I had the same complaint about Greyhawk for the longest time, until I finally figured out it was supposed to be that way (and that there was a large body of work to pull from - just not all of it WotC official: Thank you LG and Canonfire!). As for Dragonborn, Tieflings, and even the new planar cosmology, don't use them. My Saltmarsh game includes whisper gnomes, goliath, a half elf, a half-orc, and humans, no dragonborn, no tieflings, nada. All of that was from 3.5, and worked well.
Now if someone asked, I would include a dragonborn, but they would be oriental in flavor and have travelled from east of the Flanaess. Tieflings would be from pretty much anywhere, since I have ALWAYS included Aasimar and Tieflings in my human populations. Of course I use the 3.5 visual version of those races, which means they can actually fit in with a minimum of effort.
For me the stumbling block is the loss of canon, the idea that practically everything published "never happened."
i agree with you, and think that this is very offensive, IMO.
I see this sentiment as misplaced. It is not that everything "never happened", it just hasn't *happened yet*. That is an important distinction.
About the only thing that Greyhawk players can agree upon is what is part of the 576 era. It is the base from which everything else grows forth from. Whether people religiously use all of the material that came after the Folio/83' Boxed Set, only some of it, or none of it at all and have instead let their campaign world develop in other directions on its own accord, they all have that one thing in common.
So, I think going back to the base is a very good solution to everything. I hope that it doesn't just result in a simple reprint of previous material, but that they a would actually expand a bit more on things which have been left pretty much untouched to date. With regards to the post Folio/83' Boxed Set material though, all options are open. Do you still have the GK unified in the year 593 CY and never used any of what you refer to as "that animus crap" in your campaign? Not a problem. Was Thrommel saved from the Temple of Elemental Evil and now Veluna and Furyondy are united in your campaign? Not a problem. Did the Wild Coast not fall like a house of cards to the Pomarj invasion in your campaign? Not a problem. Did Rary never turn evil in your campaign? Not a problem. Did Tehn resist the barbarian invasion, and is actually a potent, vibrant, and anything but ignored nation in your campaign? Not a problem. Did the Greyhawk Wars never take place in your campaign? Not a problem. Did all of the Living Greyhawk material take place in your own campaign as well? Not a problem. Did every single bit of every single published and unpublished thing take place in your campaign? Still not a problem. I could go on...
Indeed I see this direction as a very clever way to telling everyone to deal with their own issues/problems themselves. This direction invalidates *not a single thing*, from Sargent era to Living Greyhawk era. Basically, it says "Make of the World of Greyhawk what you will."
How *dare* they put the fate of *my* Greyhawk into *my* hands!
i like the idea of retro, but im afraid of a new "temple of elemental evil", new "queen fo the spiders" and so on.
even if the original wasnt great, i prefer a "return" adventure, better then re-invent material.
and thats why im afraid. it does exist YET, but maybe they could explore another things, and not what have already happened.
maybe i dont like people changing material from other authors. i dont know...
wish i could understand better what is making me frightened about the "not happend yet"...time will tell
Is your concern that the history we know of as Greyhawk could be changed once a 576 campaign began? For example, suppose WOTC keeps the history the same up to when the campaign begins (576) and that if they provided future supplements (modules, sourcebooks, etc.) that these things wouldn't happen or they would in a different way?
Bear in mind that no specific references were offered in the starting of this thread and that this 576 backup plan WILL be what WOTC chooses to do. Grumblings and rumors in this industry seem pretty weak to me, especially when it involves Greyhawk. I say that because it has been on the WOTC neglect list for quite some time. So honestly, I would just take this whole "backing up the campaign to 576 CY and starting over" with a grain of salt.
Also in my opinion, even if this is based off of fact (which we have no proof of) WOTC strikes me as a unreliable flip flop rumor mill anyway, so again, a grain of salt. Don't let it get to you! _________________ Eileen of Greyhawk, Prophet of Istus, Messenger of the Gods
Advancing the timeline isn't setting development anyways, it's *campaign development*. We don't need need campaign development. We all have our own campaigns which are developing quite nicely and independently of everything else. What is useful is *setting development*, and there is a lot of the Greyhawk setting that can be developed.
(Yes, I'm poking all the "timeline advancers" out there in the eye with a pointy stick. )
It would be a pretty bad if they decided to rewrite whole tracts of history/background though. Hopefully that will be kept to a minimum or not happen at all. What is there is good, and forms a solid base to be built upon. There's no need to alter it drastically. Also, there's no need for a spell plague or other catastrophic event to explain the way a class mechaninc has changed to work under 4e; it is merely assumed that magic(for instance) has always worked in the new 4e way. I'd think this is sort of a "Duh!" thing, but they were compelled to do a similar thing with mechanics when the change from 1e to 2e was made. I hope they don't go that route again, destroying the landscape of Greyhawk as we know it in way of accomplishing something that didn't need to be accomplished in the first place. We saw what a great reaction that got from all of the Forgotten Realms fans.
Last edited by Cebrion on Thu Sep 18, 2008 2:11 am; edited 1 time in total
I have come to announce that I have spent considerable hours of divination with Istus and in all her glory and wisdom, she has granted unto Canonfire a magical device so great that it shall answer all of your "What will happen to Greyhawk" questions.
This magical device is very delicate and only works when you ask it a question in a full sentance and with a question mark at the end. Merely type in your question in the box appearing at the top and then hit the "ask" button. Do not question the answers received for they are holy to us. Only the truly faithful will learn so place your absolute faith in both Istus and the magic device she has bestowed upon us. Please use this divine source to finally discover the fate that awaits the World of Greyhawk.
Please share you question and answer with the rest of Canonfire.
I think the timeline of Expedition to the Ruins of Greyhawk is set at 597 CY.
It is. And all the Dungeon adventures set in Greyhawk advanced after 2001 at the rate of one campaign year/real year.
And Return to the Temple of Elemental Evil, if you do the math, was set in 594 CY. That may not have been intentional on Monte Cook's part, though. If he thought the original adventure was set in 576, then he meant it to be in 591 (it says "15 years later" several times).
I never participated in LG, and so I do not consider it to hold any water. For me, the timeline remains at 591 CY, where it has been frozen these past eight years.
I ignored this one the first time that I saw it, but I want to make a comment on it this time.
I am not all for change. I want GH to remain the same setting that I have played for over 24 years. But the idea that someone would steadfastly refuse to advance a timeline just on the basis of being mad at WoTC (or whatever reason one might have) is ludicrous to me. The very nature of time is that it advances. One cannot (in an IRL sense) stop time, and I don't think that gaming is any different.
Beyond that, to insinuate that someone else's campaign is somehow invalid because one didn't play in it, is likewise foolhardy. Just because one has not done something, does not, and cannot, detract from what others have done. One has to recognize that when they are in a home campaign, it is theirs that is the minority. So, to say that the "official" game doesn't "hold any water" seems to be full of hubris and misdirected anger. I am certain that the tens (if not hundreds) of thousands of people that played the Living Greyhawk campaign would likely look at that person's home game as not holding any water, not the other way around.
More to the point of this thread; time advances. Time doesn't necessarily change things, but it does progress. Even if all the same bad guys are still there, and the political scene hasn't changed all that much, saying that it is just a few years later isn't going tohurt anything. I for one cannot imagine how all of the members of the Directing Oligarchy could have remained the same for all of these years. And when ten years ago (in The Adventure Begins, 591 CY) it said that Derider Fanshen "plans to retire in 592 CY", It doesn't make any sense to me that the event wouldn't have happened yet. It is this type of "campaign development" that I believe to be absolutely necessary. I don't want a Spell Plague, I don't want it to be 22 years into the past, I want to see the normal, logical course of life over the past seven Common Years. That seems fairly rational to me... which is all I am looking for - something rational. Not biased by opinion, or emotional reactions to a corporation, or anything else. I am looking for a sane, normal world (as much as a fantasy setting can be), that can be understood in the light of everything that has gone before it. It's a little thing that I like to call "progress".
Time marches on, and to that point, as it says in the very beginning of Expedition to the Ruins of Greyhawk, "...time does not stand still in Greyhawk."
I do want to point out that I think an issue most folks have is that they've been burnt in the past as far as "progress" goes. Very few settings have successfully done restarts with "progress" as you've framed it. We've seen the blowing up of the Realms, I saw it with the Siege on Tolkeen with Rifts (which wasn't so much an unpalatable setting change as it was destroying the originally presented figures on populace, resources, and the overall feel of the setting), and I'm still not sure what the heck happened with Gamma World! I believe its matters like this that make some folks a bit queasy whenever they hear talk of progressing a setting along.
I don't believe a lot of folks believe current publishers very capable of "rational advancement". And I'm with you--I don't mind the flow of years, I don't even mind groundbreaking events--but I do want that link to the past and the history of the setting. Rationality just seems to be in short supply, I worry.
Return to the Temple of Elemental Evil, if you do the math, was set in 594 CY. That may not have been intentional on Monte Cook's part, though. If he thought the original adventure was set in 576, then he meant it to be in 591 (it says "15 years later" several times).
I may not entirely understand the reference or timeline here, but I am going to give a shot at it. After the original ToEE, there was another event at the temple. In 2001, Wizards of the Coast published a novel by Thomas M. Reid also bearing the title The Temple of Elemental Evil. In it, "...adventurers put down an attempted resurgence of the Temple of Elemental Evil in 579 CY." (LGG)
So, if one counts the date from 579CY, the date of the RToEE adventure would be properly placed in 594CY. That would make it 15 years later, and would discount the 591-thing.
Hope that adds rational explanation to the timeline.
579 CY is the official date for T1-4 (because it takes place ten years after the Battle of Emridy Meadows). Which would place Return in 594 CY.
The problem is that it was published in 2001, and ordinarily the default date for Greyhawk adventures published then is 591. So I think perhaps Monte Cook must have thought that T1-4 took place in 576 CY.
Ah! I see now! I had thought that the Battle of Emridy Meadows was at the same time of the adventurers' foray into the ToEE! So, the "resurgence" mentioned is the original adventure! I always had thought that the original module was set at the same time of the Battle! Now I see why it was always a bit confusing! I didn't have the correct date to begin with! So, I guess there actually were three occassions of things at the temple, it's just that the first one wasn't an adventure. The Battle was background, even when it was first played?
No wonder GH players have a difficult time with the way the timeline goes. But then, I bet FR players, or Eberron, or Mystarra, or Dragonlance, or any other players, probably all have had a hard time with timelines every now and again.
The same complaints about novels apply to timline advances. It is not then customers who dictate what happens in their campaigns so much as it is the novels/products. That is, if you plan to use any future material which takes the novels/products as canon. Of course that isn't really setting development at all, but campaign development(as I stated earlier). Basically, if you want to really be able to make use of futuermaterail, you better toe the current product/novel line and not deviate too much, if at all, from it.
Time surely marches on in Greyhawk, but it should be *your time*, not somebody elses. Keeping products as neutral as possible in this regard would make them more useful to more people. Drastic timeline and other changes are simply a bad idea. The Forgotten Realms got the double whammy in this regard, and most people are in agreement that it was a bad idea. The negative sentiment may peter out, but only because most poeople are simply going to come to terms with the fact that nothing can be done about it now and that if they wish to use all of the shiney new stuff they will probably have to move to abandon their old stuff. That is a pretty messed up decision to force upon your long time loyal constituency.
With regards to Castle Greyhawk, it doesn't really affect too many things as it is such a self-contained adventure site. However, the adventure still makes use of some well known characters that may still be active in other areas of people's campaigns at certain times(Vayne for example).
Greyhawk could use some more meat on its bones, and not some radical reconstructive surgery. I simply prefer the hawt, young, natural 576 CY Greyhawk to the the worn out and 44DD implanted, tummy tucked, face-lifted(i.e "re-capped") 625 CY Greyhawk. No matter how much to try to dress up the old girl, it will just end up looking fake. 625 CY is not the new 576 CY.
Beyond that, to insinuate that someone else's campaign is somehow invalid because one didn't play in it, is likewise foolhardy. Just because one has not done something, does not, and cannot, detract from what others have done. One has to recognize that when they are in a home campaign, it is theirs that is the minority.
You could also say that, besides LG, many folks haven't played many of the published adventures out there but they are still acknowledged as canon.
Like you say, no one's home campaign follows canon GH to the letter but I think it's comforting to know that there is one official GH out there battling on and moving forward. It's a grounding base and common point of discussion.
A rebooted GH might have worked for me if it was handed back to Gary and he continued from where he left off. First producing a City of Greyhawk sourcebook based on his work from the Gord the Rogue novels and then producing a Castle Greyhawk (like he has done for Castle Zagyg). This was just a fantasy of mine, though. I know it never would have happened!
Either way if it goes down it will be a funky new thing rebooted reset or flung forward
Seriously, I mean do any of you actually play a 4e game right now? The core is funky enough and if they are making a new GH (just say they are) it will likely feel funky as well. Right now I play a cleric and it feels nothing like an old cleric, and its a strange experience. Mind you not a very "D&D" experience either. Safe to say if the core rules and all that entails thus far is weird and unfamiliar then the new setting regardless of what it is will be weird as well. Least it will for me. For me its all about feeling, if it feels like D&D then it is D&D.
So if you like the core and it feels like D&D you will likely enjoy the new GH. To me its mechanics and stuff not to mention concepts are out there compared to last edition.
I don't care for it therefore I am not likely to enjoy 4th ed. GH.
Its that simple. Realms is far gone, GH will be to. WotC wants us to drop everything and jump on board with the new stuff if we are to accept it.
Trust me the core very much has that attitude. Its all about moving forward. To me I like OLD stuff that a bunch of young peeps in my campaign cannot appreciate ( I am the oldest ) and in that regard I am not moving my heart/soul/mind into a hollow retooled GH. I am parking my old arse in 3.5 and will go with Pathfinder, for rules and either find me a WoG 83 box or stick with the LGG.
Where ever your heart is in GH, (WoG 83, FtA, LGG,) keep it there and enjoy the edition you like. 4th alone is a RESET button. At least it was in my experiences as DM and a Player.
I think there will be at least as much fluff as there is now, but i think there will be a lot of crunch added to it as well. Modify the crunch to your non-4e game if you like, use it as is, or simply ignore the crunchy bits altogether(and maybe some of the fluff too).
If this really turns out to be the plan for Greyhawk, I'm somewhat optimistic about how useful the material will be for me(and I plan to alter all of the crunchy bits).
I think that it will be easier to do that in 4E adventures than it ever was in 3.5. the adventures are much more bare bones and there are points in the notes where they specifically say "please add to this and make it your own." The magic item saturation is on par with 1E adventures I've seen - but I could be wrong.
Re: Reuseable fluff
If they reboot, then it should be fairly easy to ignore the crunch and use what of the fluff you want. If Forgotten Realms is a clue, then the campaign book will be chock full of bare bones world info, adventure hooks, and general timeline updates/changes and very little crunch. Actually very little at all. From a mechanics standpoint, there is no reason to buy a Campaign Book. From a story perspective, there is PLENTY of reasons to buy a CB. The Player's guide is mostly crunch, so if you're going for fluff, get the campaign guide. if you embrace the full change, get both.
Of course I'm currently having a blast with 4E Greyhawk, and so are my players, but its a fantastic story with easy to play mechanics, so my players are happy. I'm the only one who gets hung up on canon in the groups - and I just make sure I use canon to tell my story. I am running RtToEE specifically so I can see how the story was supposed to go. My old DM used it, but he used it in a majorly altered timeline and such, and it only barely resembled the actual adventure.
I haven't really come to an opinion on this yet. As an Over-the-Road truck driver I've been "out" of Greyhawk for many years. Second addition was all the rage when I "fell away" into the real world. I still haven't come to appreciate some of the changes made in the third and/or 3.5 editions. My opinion on this edition, therefore, must remain reserved, for the time being.
I'm still new to the internet and only found Canonfire! about four weeks ago. Had problems registering and Gary Holian was kind enough to help me with it. So, here I am. Look forward to speaking with all of you. _________________ Mystic's web page: http://melkot.com/mysticscholar/index.html
Mystic's blog page: http://mysticscholar.blogspot.com/
News on 4e Hawk are scant to non-existent currently. As has been stated in other threads, GH properties have been slwoly leaking into the main 4e product lines since the start (ie Tomb of Horrors, Hommlet, some deities, etc) but no setting treatment as yet. 2010 they announced Ravenloft-Shadow plane related products for 2011. This is good. 2012 could end up being pivotal. There is a nostalgic trend going on at Wizards with their Essentials line of rules. This genericism could lead directly to a 4e GH or 4e Dragonlance. I'd still give the edge to DL since it has novelization support, but hey, ever dog has his day...
So far as I recall, there has never been a formal announcement issued by WotC that they will be revamping Greyhawk between 2010-2012. You will note that the OP gives no references, even vaguely(so as to protect those with NDAs), either. That deosn't mean that GVD didn't hear something from somebody reputable though. However, plans(and staff) change(annually it would seem), so who knows what is going on behind the scenes at WotC regarding Greyhawk, if anything. If/when an announcement regarding Greyhawk is made, you will see it everywhere. _________________ - Moderator/Admin (in some areas)/Member -
There is one thing I can almost guarantee. And if it was already mentioned in this long thread then it bears repeating...if there is a 4e Hawk it won't be anything long lasting. A year's worth of products and tie ins at best, then the wave would maybe continue in update articles in eDragon/eDungeon. Fan made conversions naturally would BOOM, but the setting a year model by Wizards ensures that anything 4e GH will only have as much legs as the previous or next setting.
Yeah. And this is why GH is also the best of the established game worlds because there is ample canon written for it while at the same time it's easiest to adapt stuff into from other sources, much like a homebrew.
I read the ToEE novel. It was like a SyFy channel original picture.
Sadly, I'll have to agree with that. Greyhawk has been mishandled in so many ways. Most of the Greyhawk novels based on actual adventures were not so good. The stories don't have enough to do with the titles of the books themselves. They have their good moments though. If you can get them for cover price or less, you might like them enough for it to be worth it. _________________ - Moderator/Admin (in some areas)/Member -
I was rather disapointed in TOEE; but mostly because it felt rushed and the Temple itself barely made much of an apperaence....though I've heard that the author was constrained by a world limit and there was much more to the book....haven't read the parts that were left out.
That being said; though they have practically no Greyhawk cannon in them at all other than place names; the Justiciar and Escalla trio of novels were wonderful, light-hearted reads! Cinders the sentient, pyro-maniac, hell-hound pelt is one of my favorite fantasy characters of all time!
Also; allthough it's clearly heavily 3rd Edition based (and I despise all editions after 2nd); the Tomb of Horrors novel wasn't too bad.
The Tomb of Horrors book was one of the stupidest interpretations of anything every interpreted across mediums. Seriously, it bordered on saying, "Kaerion used Power Attack and the Bullywug Frenzied Berserker was reduced to zero hit points!"
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