Should Mystara have it's own fanon magazine?

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Should Mystara have it's own fanon magazine?

Post by Knightfall » Sat Apr 27, 2013 8:38 pm

Greyhawk has the Oerth Journal and the Forgotten Realms has the Candlekeep Compendium, so why shouldn't Mystara have its own fanon magazine? There is already a wealth of information to choose from on the Vaults of Pandius to build the first few issues. Of course, a Mystaran fanon mag wouldn't have to be based on the VoP, but it would be a great starting point.

Thoughts? Comment? Concerns?

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Re: Should Mystara have it's own fanon magazine?

Post by Boneguard » Sat Apr 27, 2013 9:35 pm

It's an interesting point you raise and yes Mystara does deserve it's Fanon Magazine and the Vault is a greatp lace to dig up some stuff.

My 'concern' if I can call it this would be in regards to the format. Meaning: Do we do Narrative only or Statted stuff? If Statted which edition? OD&D, AD&D(2nd) or D&D3.x?
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Re: Should Mystara have it's own fanon magazine?

Post by RobJN » Sat Apr 27, 2013 10:14 pm

Boneguard wrote:It's an interesting point you raise and yes Mystara does deserve it's Fanon Magazine and the Vault is a greatp lace to dig up some stuff.

My 'concern' if I can call it this would be in regards to the format. Meaning: Do we do Narrative only or Statted stuff? If Statted which edition? OD&D, AD&D(2nd) or D&D3.x?
All of the above. If you must stat, go with the system you are most confortable with. If you're going with narrative, then edition really doesn't come into play.

I don't think anybody will come after you with torches and pitchforks, or break fingers if you stat for the "wrong" edition.

Thorn's Chronicle is a mess of different editions and mechanics, and I still have most of my fingers... :x
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Re: Should Mystara have it's own fanon magazine?

Post by Big Mac » Sat Apr 27, 2013 11:43 pm

I think that there are a number of things that fans of campaign settings have created that kind of should be standard for all other campaign settings. A fan magazine is one of those things.

If Pathfinder can have Wayfarer, I think that it could be technically possible for Mystara (or any other campaign setting) to have something that looks just as good.

I don't think a magazine should focus on rules, so supporting more than one set of rules, so long as stuff is Mystara related, would be something I'd love to see.

In fact there are some existing projects out there and maybe a magazine could help with them.

Perhaps Thorn's Chronicle could be used as the basis of regular articles. Perhaps Thorf's maps could be used in a guest map spot. Maybe 3rd Edition conversions or 4th Edition conversions of monsters or other things could fill a few pages. But it might also be good to see retro-conversions of new things.

Mostly, I think it would be good to see stuff about Mystara.
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Re: Should Mystara have it's own fanon magazine?

Post by Cliffrice » Sun Apr 28, 2013 1:44 am

I think a Kobold quarterly approach I.e. any system so long as it mystara. There needs to be fluff in each article so its usefull to all.

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Re: Should Mystara have it's own fanon magazine?

Post by RobJN » Sun Apr 28, 2013 2:05 am

Cliffrice wrote:I think a Kobold quarterly approach I.e. any system so long as it mystara. There needs to be fluff in each article so its usefull to all.
Perhaps an "Edition Wars" column that would take a past article's crunch and convert it over to another edition...
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Re: Should Mystara have it's own fanon magazine?

Post by Thorf » Sun Apr 28, 2013 4:10 am

Well, there has never been a better time to start on such a project.

I would be happy to provide maps, both for a "map of the month" type feature and as necessary for articles (depending on real life obligations, obviously). We have a wealth of information on the Vaults to draw from - much of which many people (including myself) have probably never come across.

Moreover, putting them in a magazine format would be a wonderful opportunity to edit them, combining and compressing them into more manageable sizes. The sheer length of a lot of the stuff we've generated, along with the lack of an organisational structure and the somewhat random nature of the chronological structure of the Vaults, mean that it's not as accessible as I would like.

And best of all, Bruce is back working on Mystara, and we may well be able to persuade him to contribute something for such a project. :D

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Re: Should Mystara have it's own fanon magazine?

Post by Chimpman » Sun Apr 28, 2013 4:22 am

Long, long ago, in a multiverse far, far away... There was the Tome of Mystara (issues of which can be found on the Vaults) ;)

But yes, I would love to see a project like this get started up again. Hmmm... what about a series of articles exploring the Hollow Moon?

... So... who's going to edit this thing?
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Re: Should Mystara have it's own fanon magazine?

Post by Thorf » Sun Apr 28, 2013 4:40 am

Chimpman wrote:... So... who's going to edit this thing?
I would suggest a number of people collaborate to form a team of editors, so that when inevitably someone gets busy with other things the whole project doesn't grind to a halt. For the same reason, it would be sensible to use a collaborative platform such as Google Docs for the actual editing. The final copy could be made as a PDF.

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Re: Should Mystara have it's own fanon magazine?

Post by Chimpman » Sun Apr 28, 2013 6:38 am

Thorf wrote:
Chimpman wrote:... So... who's going to edit this thing?
I would suggest a number of people collaborate to form a team of editors, so that when inevitably someone gets busy with other things the whole project doesn't grind to a halt.
I agree that a team effort is best. So are you volunteering your services :mrgreen: ?
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Re: Should Mystara have it's own fanon magazine?

Post by agathokles » Sun Apr 28, 2013 8:37 am

The Tome of Mystara was great. I had in mind to do something on these lines ages ago (like in 2004), but at that time there wasn't much interest. I'd be interested in collaborating -- I even have something ready to contribute (I had originally written an almost entire sample issue, and, though most of the stuff was reworked for the Vaults, a few items are still in my to-do folders).

A few random ideas for columns and features:
  • a column on NPCs ("Rogues, Regents and Rascals"?)
  • a column on Magic Items (like the old Bazaar of the Bizarre in Dragon Magazine)
  • a column on societies, mercenary companies, military units, clerical orders and such
  • features could be somewhat thematic -- like an issue focused on a nation (or smaller or larger area, depending on the input), or an issue on a type of monsters, etc.
  • a column on pseudo-biblia (ask Spellweaver!)
  • a "treasure map" column (essentially a map-focused side trek adventure, though not necessarily an actual treasure map)
A monsters/creatures column could also be feasible, but is IMO less likely unless it is an ecology type column rather than a new monsters column.

For example, a Rockhome/Dwarves issue could include:
  • A biography of Odrinn Sacnissen (the dwarf explorer from the Hail the Heroes adventure)
  • Dwarven-specific magic items
  • a Rockhome military unit (e.g., the Rockhome Marksmen, a unit of dwarf crossbowmen trained to run long distances to increase the mobility of the otherwise slow-moving dwarven infantry)
  • a survey of dwarven literature.
  • a map of the Rockhome underground/shadowdeep
In addition to one or two feature articles (an adventure set in Rockhome, a mini-gazetteer of Smaggeft, or something on those lines).

I agree with Thorf that a shared editing system is necessary. Google Drive is fine, but if we expect fine tuning of typesetting, page and table layout, etc., someone will need to do it as a post-process on the final document, because the Google Docs format itself is rather weak in that department.
GP

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Re: Should Mystara have it's own fanon magazine?

Post by Big Mac » Sun Apr 28, 2013 10:15 am

RobJN wrote:
Cliffrice wrote:I think a Kobold quarterly approach I.e. any system so long as it mystara. There needs to be fluff in each article so its usefull to all.
Perhaps an "Edition Wars" column that would take a past article's crunch and convert it over to another edition...
Great idea, but I never liked the Edition Wars (as it was a bunch of numpties saying "my game is better than your game") and I'm not sure they deserve to be remembered in the name for a series of articles. How about a name that has "Converted" or "Rebooted" in it?
Chimpman wrote:Long, long ago, in a multiverse far, far away... There was the Tome of Mystara (issues of which can be found on the Vaults) ;)
Who "owns"" the Tome of Mystara? If they are still in the community, maybe the old magazine could be revived. Or would it be better to start again from scratch? :?
Chimpman wrote:But yes, I would love to see a project like this get started up again. Hmmm... what about a series of articles exploring the Hollow Moon?
Sounds like it could be interesting. How much of the Hollow Moon is canon and how much is fanon?
Chimpman wrote:
Thorf wrote:
Chimpman wrote:... So... who's going to edit this thing?
I would suggest a number of people collaborate to form a team of editors, so that when inevitably someone gets busy with other things the whole project doesn't grind to a halt.
I agree that a team effort is best. So are you volunteering your services :mrgreen: ?
Knightfall suggested this. Maybe he would want to be part of the editorial team. :twisted:
agathokles wrote:The Tome of Mystara was great. I had in mind to do something on these lines ages ago (like in 2004), but at that time there wasn't much interest. I'd be interested in collaborating -- I even have something ready to contribute (I had originally written an almost entire sample issue, and, though most of the stuff was reworked for the Vaults, a few items are still in my to-do folders).
Maybe people could help revive your project, if you had details worked out.
agathokles wrote:A few random ideas for columns and features:
  • a column on NPCs ("Rogues, Regents and Rascals"?)
  • a column on Magic Items (like the old Bazaar of the Bizarre in Dragon Magazine)
  • a column on societies, mercenary companies, military units, clerical orders and such
  • features could be somewhat thematic -- like an issue focused on a nation (or smaller or larger area, depending on the input), or an issue on a type of monsters, etc.
  • a column on pseudo-biblia (ask Spellweaver!)
  • a "treasure map" column (essentially a map-focused side trek adventure, though not necessarily an actual treasure map)
A monsters/creatures column could also be feasible, but is IMO less likely unless it is an ecology type column rather than a new monsters column.
Ecology articles would be great. I would also love to see someone go through the Mystara monsters and provide Monster Lore for any monsters that do not yet have it.

(While the magazine is going to be multi-edition, I think that would be a great opportunity to create content that could help the 3rd Edition Mystara conversion team have a full set of monsters converted to 3e and given both Ecology and Monster Lore sections. That might allow for a Monsters of Mystara netbook to be put together for 3e players. EN World's Creature Catalogue team has been working on converting monsters, so if they were asked for permission to reuse their content, maybe there could be a netbook put out, either by the magazine team or the 3e conversion team using some of the content created for the magazine.)

Is there anyone in the Mystara community that makes fan art for monsters?
agathokles wrote:For example, a Rockhome/Dwarves issue could include:
  • A biography of Odrinn Sacnissen (the dwarf explorer from the Hail the Heroes adventure)
  • Dwarven-specific magic items
  • a Rockhome military unit (e.g., the Rockhome Marksmen, a unit of dwarf crossbowmen trained to run long distances to increase the mobility of the otherwise slow-moving dwarven infantry)
  • a survey of dwarven literature.
  • a map of the Rockhome underground/shadowdeep
In addition to one or two feature articles (an adventure set in Rockhome, a mini-gazetteer of Smaggeft, or something on those lines).
I love the idea of a theme for an issue.
agathokles wrote:I agree with Thorf that a shared editing system is necessary. Google Drive is fine, but if we expect fine tuning of typesetting, page and table layout, etc., someone will need to do it as a post-process on the final document, because the Google Docs format itself is rather weak in that department.
One thing that would need to be done is working out the style of the magazine. Thorf is an expert on the house style of official stuff, but it might also be good to look at the house style of The Tome of Mystara to see if that is something that should be used. You could probably have someone copy and paste old content to show what the format would look like, before the actual first issue of the new magazine is finished.

I'm not making any promises (as I'm not the boss) but if you actually get anywhere with this concept, perhaps The Piazza could host a private forum for people working on the magazine to talk about things they are trying to get ready for the next magazine.
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Re: Should Mystara have it's own fanon magazine?

Post by RobJN » Sun Apr 28, 2013 12:41 pm

Big Mac wrote:
RobJN wrote:
Cliffrice wrote:I think a Kobold quarterly approach I.e. any system so long as it mystara. There needs to be fluff in each article so its usefull to all.
Perhaps an "Edition Wars" column that would take a past article's crunch and convert it over to another edition...
Great idea, but I never liked the Edition Wars (as it was a bunch of numpties saying "my game is better than your game") and I'm not sure they deserve to be remembered in the name for a series of articles. How about a name that has "Converted" or "Rebooted" in it?
The idea was to use the term sort of tongue-in-cheek, but to also show that ideas could be converted between various editions in a civil and productive manner, like we do everything here at the Piazza.
Big Mac wrote:
Chimpman wrote:Long, long ago, in a multiverse far, far away... There was the Tome of Mystara (issues of which can be found on the Vaults) ;)
Who "owns"" the Tome of Mystara? If they are still in the community, maybe the old magazine could be revived. Or would it be better to start again from scratch? :?
Chimpman wrote:But yes, I would love to see a project like this get started up again. Hmmm... what about a series of articles exploring the Hollow Moon?
Sounds like it could be interesting. How much of the Hollow Moon is canon and how much is fanon?
Chimpman wrote:
Thorf wrote:
Chimpman wrote:... So... who's going to edit this thing?
I would suggest a number of people collaborate to form a team of editors, so that when inevitably someone gets busy with other things the whole project doesn't grind to a halt.
I agree that a team effort is best. So are you volunteering your services :mrgreen: ?
Knightfall suggested this. Maybe he would want to be part of the editorial team. :twisted:
Big Mac wrote:
agathokles wrote:The Tome of Mystara was great. I had in mind to do something on these lines ages ago (like in 2004), but at that time there wasn't much interest. I'd be interested in collaborating -- I even have something ready to contribute (I had originally written an almost entire sample issue, and, though most of the stuff was reworked for the Vaults, a few items are still in my to-do folders).
Maybe people could help revive your project, if you had details worked out.
agathokles wrote:A few random ideas for columns and features:
  • a column on NPCs ("Rogues, Regents and Rascals"?)
  • a column on Magic Items (like the old Bazaar of the Bizarre in Dragon Magazine)
  • a column on societies, mercenary companies, military units, clerical orders and such
  • features could be somewhat thematic -- like an issue focused on a nation (or smaller or larger area, depending on the input), or an issue on a type of monsters, etc.
  • a column on pseudo-biblia (ask Spellweaver!)
  • a "treasure map" column (essentially a map-focused side trek adventure, though not necessarily an actual treasure map)
A monsters/creatures column could also be feasible, but is IMO less likely unless it is an ecology type column rather than a new monsters column.
Ecology articles would be great. I would also love to see someone go through the Mystara monsters and provide Monster Lore for any monsters that do not yet have it.

(While the magazine is going to be multi-edition, I think that would be a great opportunity to create content that could help the 3rd Edition Mystara conversion team have a full set of monsters converted to 3e and given both Ecology and Monster Lore sections. That might allow for a Monsters of Mystara netbook to be put together for 3e players. EN World's Creature Catalogue team has been working on converting monsters, so if they were asked for permission to reuse their content, maybe there could be a netbook put out, either by the magazine team or the 3e conversion team using some of the content created for the magazine.)

Is there anyone in the Mystara community that makes fan art for monsters?
agathokles wrote:For example, a Rockhome/Dwarves issue could include:
  • A biography of Odrinn Sacnissen (the dwarf explorer from the Hail the Heroes adventure)
  • Dwarven-specific magic items
  • a Rockhome military unit (e.g., the Rockhome Marksmen, a unit of dwarf crossbowmen trained to run long distances to increase the mobility of the otherwise slow-moving dwarven infantry)
  • a survey of dwarven literature.
  • a map of the Rockhome underground/shadowdeep
In addition to one or two feature articles (an adventure set in Rockhome, a mini-gazetteer of Smaggeft, or something on those lines).
I love the idea of a theme for an issue.
I like this approach, as well -- it worked very well for Dragon Magazine, and I think it'd be a good idea to emulate it. Regular columns, special feature sections, short fiction (that rules ME out!).... Along with Thorf's maps, perhaps an "Adventure Hooks," divided up by level, a-la the Gazetteers.
Big Mac wrote:
agathokles wrote:I agree with Thorf that a shared editing system is necessary. Google Drive is fine, but if we expect fine tuning of typesetting, page and table layout, etc., someone will need to do it as a post-process on the final document, because the Google Docs format itself is rather weak in that department.
One thing that would need to be done is working out the style of the magazine. Thorf is an expert on the house style of official stuff, but it might also be good to look at the house style of The Tome of Mystara to see if that is something that should be used. You could probably have someone copy and paste old content to show what the format would look like, before the actual first issue of the new magazine is finished.

I'm not making any promises (as I'm not the boss) but if you actually get anywhere with this concept, perhaps The Piazza could host a private forum for people working on the magazine to talk about things they are trying to get ready for the next magazine.
Thanks to some retro-arcade game, we won't be able to use the name "Chronicle of Mystara" ;)
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Re: Should Mystara have it's own fanon magazine?

Post by Thorf » Sun Apr 28, 2013 2:09 pm

Chimpman wrote:I agree that a team effort is best. So are you volunteering your services :mrgreen: ?
I don't see why not. I definitely wouldn't be able to do it on my own, but if it's a team effort I'd love to be part of the team.
agathokles wrote:The Tome of Mystara was great. I had in mind to do something on these lines ages ago (like in 2004), but at that time there wasn't much interest. I'd be interested in collaborating -- I even have something ready to contribute (I had originally written an almost entire sample issue, and, though most of the stuff was reworked for the Vaults, a few items are still in my to-do folders).
This is the sort of thing that we should be using. It's great to have brand new articles, but writing new articles takes time and significantly raises the bar of difficulty for getting the magazine out. I think it's actually more important to have a regular release, and reworking/improving on existing stuff would be a great tool to enable us to do precisely that.

GP, your list of possible topics is great - we'll need to brainstorm and expand it.
A monsters/creatures column could also be feasible, but is IMO less likely unless it is an ecology type column rather than a new monsters column.
It depends on what people are writing, but in general I agree with you.
For example, a Rockhome/Dwarves issue could include:
  • A biography of Odrinn Sacnissen (the dwarf explorer from the Hail the Heroes adventure)
  • Dwarven-specific magic items
  • a Rockhome military unit (e.g., the Rockhome Marksmen, a unit of dwarf crossbowmen trained to run long distances to increase the mobility of the otherwise slow-moving dwarven infantry)
  • a survey of dwarven literature.
  • a map of the Rockhome underground/shadowdeep
In addition to one or two feature articles (an adventure set in Rockhome, a mini-gazetteer of Smaggeft, or something on those lines).
Themed issues is also a great idea. If we plan them out well in advance, it should be possible to present a good deal of information on each theme. But again, I think that just bringing existing articles together and giving them a proper editing pass in addition to presenting brand new articles will really help to keep the whole project together.
I agree with Thorf that a shared editing system is necessary. Google Drive is fine, but if we expect fine tuning of typesetting, page and table layout, etc., someone will need to do it as a post-process on the final document, because the Google Docs format itself is rather weak in that department.
Yes, I wholeheartedly agree. Making a professional-quality PDF is well within our reach these days, so there's no reason not to go that road at the final production stage. If we can manage to get some original art to use, especially for covers, that will also help a great deal with the presentation.

It might help to create some roles within the editing team to head up different aspects of the production, such as art director (procurement of publishable art and illustrations), designer (layout and typography), theme director (likely changing from issue to issue), cartographer, etc.
Big Mac wrote:One thing that would need to be done is working out the style of the magazine. Thorf is an expert on the house style of official stuff, but it might also be good to look at the house style of The Tome of Mystara to see if that is something that should be used. You could probably have someone copy and paste old content to show what the format would look like, before the actual first issue of the new magazine is finished.
If I have my way, it will absolutely be in the retro style of late 80s/early 90s TSR products. ;) :cool:

Of course, once the style is established, it won't be hard to assemble a new issue each time. It would also be easy to vary things like the colour palette while keeping the same integral design for each issue, much as the Gazetteers did.
I'm not making any promises (as I'm not the boss) but if you actually get anywhere with this concept, perhaps The Piazza could host a private forum for people working on the magazine to talk about things they are trying to get ready for the next magazine.
David, that could be really helpful. We'd still need to use something like Google Drive to store the actual documents, but having a forum for editorial discussion to take place in would be essential too.

Does anyone have a good idea for a name? Since it's a new project, I'd say Tome of Mystara is out. Something a little more catchy would be nice, anyway. It would probably be best if it included the word Mystara, and somehow recalled the most famous/popular features of the setting. Off the top of my head:

World of Mystara
Mystara Times
Mystara Chronicle
Mystara Monthly
Poor Wizard's Guide to Mystara
Mystara Grimoire
Voyages in Mystara

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Re: Should Mystara have it's own fanon magazine?

Post by Ashtagon » Sun Apr 28, 2013 2:34 pm

How about "The Known Journal", as an homage to "The Known World"?
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Re: Should Mystara have it's own fanon magazine?

Post by Thorf » Sun Apr 28, 2013 2:38 pm

Ideas for themes:
  • A certain Gazetteer nation
  • A certain nation or area elsewhere in the world
  • A certain race
  • A certain character class
  • A certain theme (law vs chaos, magical technology, Immortal worship, etc)
Ideas for recurring sections:
  • Letters (if possible, with answers from Bruce Heard...?)
  • Map (updated map of an area in keeping with the theme, perhaps with accompanying article)
  • Gazetteer (just a short article)

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Re: Should Mystara have it's own fanon magazine?

Post by Thorf » Sun Apr 28, 2013 2:47 pm

Ashtagon wrote:How about "The Known Journal", as an homage to "The Known World"?
Known World Journal might be better. I think it's important to keep the name of the setting in plain view. In that regard, Known World is a bit of a step back from Mystara, and at least in some reader's minds might preclude the inclusion of Hollow World or even Savage Coast or other outer world area articles.

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Re: Should Mystara have it's own fanon magazine?

Post by Ashtagon » Sun Apr 28, 2013 3:18 pm

Oh, how about something completely different then?

The Marvellous Manuscript of Mystara's Mysteries

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http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/M ... ativeTitle
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Re: Should Mystara have it's own fanon magazine?

Post by agathokles » Sun Apr 28, 2013 6:37 pm

I quite like "The Mystara Grimoire": simple, and reminds the Known World Grimoire series, while extending the scope to the whole Mystara.

@Thorf: thanks, your ideas for themes are also very good. I'll have to avoid the designer post, but somehow I think I know who's going to be the cartographer :-P

@Big Mac: "Edition Wars" may seem odd, but think that there's an entire retroclone called "Dark Dungeons"...

GP

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Re: Should Mystara have it's own fanon magazine?

Post by AllanP » Sun Apr 28, 2013 7:33 pm

Well I'd certainly support this project!

A few observations for the (as-yet-undefined) editorial team to consider:
  • Purpose - how will this "magazine" differ from what's available in the Vaults, the discussions here at the Piazza, or what Bruce is doing in his blog? Who's the audience? Why do they need it?
  • Format - I'm guessing PDF and where would the downloads be hosted?
  • Frequency - what sort of schedule do you want to work to? New issues need to be frequent enough to maintain interest and support. Readers are put off by having long breaks between issues, and contributors lose enthusiasm if there submissions are delayed
  • Content - would be good to have an outline plan for the first 3 or 4 issues, so that these could be developed ahead of time, rather than complete work on one and then have to spend time deciding what would be next...
  • Artwork - ideally some artists are needed amongst the contributors to delineate illustrations to enhance the articles
  • Editorial Team - what roles are needed? How will they collaborate? Acquisition of content, formatting, proff-reading, "publishing"...
  • Themed issues- good ideas from Thorf (you could probably get away with a "Miscellena" issue once in a while (the theme being "no theme")
  • Name - "Annals of Mystara" popped into my mind, but GP's "The Mystara Grimoire" sounds good (or should that be "Mystaran Grimoire"?) I agree that "Known World" would seem to imply only the south-eastern corner of Brun, so Mystara is more all-encompassing.
Willing to be involved if anyone wants to take up the gauntlet

regards,
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Re: Should Mystara have it's own fanon magazine?

Post by Knightfall » Sun Apr 28, 2013 7:46 pm

Whoa! My casual suggestion has started a bit of a wildfire. It's good to see that Mystara fans are into this idea. :cool:

I'd probably leave editorial duties up to other people with more experience and knowledge of what is canon. I'm a Mystara fan, but I'm hardly a Mystara guru. As a diehard 3e fan, I'd likely be able to help with 3e monster conversion stats.

I didn't know about Tome of Mystara. How many issues did it have?
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Re: Should Mystara have it's own fanon magazine?

Post by RobJN » Sun Apr 28, 2013 7:51 pm

Looks like six issues, published between 1999 and 2001 http://pandius.com/tome/
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Re: Should Mystara have it's own fanon magazine?

Post by Knightfall » Sun Apr 28, 2013 7:57 pm

AllanP wrote:Well I'd certainly support this project!

A few observations for the (as-yet-undefined) editorial team to consider:
  • Purpose - how will this "magazine" differ from what's available in the Vaults, the discussions here at the Piazza, or what Bruce is doing in his blog? Who's the audience? Why do they need it?
  • Format - I'm guessing PDF and where would the downloads be hosted?
  • Frequency - what sort of schedule do you want to work to? New issues need to be frequent enough to maintain interest and support. Readers are put off by having long breaks between issues, and contributors lose enthusiasm if there submissions are delayed
  • Content - would be good to have an outline plan for the first 3 or 4 issues, so that these could be developed ahead of time, rather than complete work on one and then have to spend time deciding what would be next...
  • Artwork - ideally some artists are needed amongst the contributors to delineate illustrations to enhance the articles
  • Editorial Team - what roles are needed? How will they collaborate? Acquisition of content, formatting, proff-reading, "publishing"...
  • Themed issues- good ideas from Thorf (you could probably get away with a "Miscellena" issue once in a while (the theme being "no theme")
  • Name - "Annals of Mystara" popped into my mind, but GP's "The Mystara Grimoire" sounds good (or should that be "Mystaran Grimoire"?) I agree that "Known World" would seem to imply only the south-eastern corner of Brun, so Mystara is more all-encompassing.
Willing to be involved if anyone wants to take up the gauntlet

regards,
All of these questions are important to the process. I think a new Mystara magazine should start off as a quarterly publication. It would be difficult to put out a monthly magazine, and even four times a year might be too hard for even a dedicated group of fans. I would say there should be, at least, two issues a year.
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Re: Should Mystara have it's own fanon magazine?

Post by agathokles » Sun Apr 28, 2013 8:34 pm

Purpose: I'd say that the difference w.r.t. to VoP is the magazine format, and the ability to exploit synergies through thematic issues (ok, that sounds a bit too much like marketing, but the idea is that thematic issues could enable short-term collaborations). W.r.t. Bruce's blog, the difference is that Bruce's blog is primarily Bruce's space, while a magazine would be submission-based.

Format: I'd assume PDF, though ideally one might want to produce other formats as well (e.g., for kindle). Downloads can be hosted on Google Drive, though the Vaults would be a better home.

Frequency: monthly is likely too much, unless the format is very short. I'd say quarterly would be a good compromise, though bimonthly could be affordable if there were no bottlenecks (e.g., few editors or submissions, or a single person doing all the layout work).

Content: you are indeed right. The editors would need to decide on the themes for the first few issues, perhaps through a poll (also to gauge interest).

Artwork: AFAIK, few of us have any skill at drawing/painting (Chimpman may be the sole exception). I don't foresee much art, if any.

Editorial team: well, editing (including proof-reading) would be the primary task. Layout/typesetting is the second. Someone will need to write a foreword for each issue. People working on editing issues would divide the work by article, while layout/typesetting will likely need to be divided by issue.

GP
Last edited by agathokles on Sun Apr 28, 2013 9:04 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Should Mystara have it's own fanon magazine?

Post by agathokles » Sun Apr 28, 2013 9:03 pm

Big Mac wrote: Who "owns"" the Tome of Mystara? If they are still in the community, maybe the old magazine could be revived. Or would it be better to start again from scratch? :?
AFAIK, neither of the two editors (Jennifer Guerra and Kevin Turner) is still active in the community.
Sounds like it could be interesting. How much of the Hollow Moon is canon and how much is fanon?
AFAIK, it is entirely non canon.
Chimpman wrote: Maybe people could help revive your project, if you had details worked out.
No point in doing that. Better start from scratch, and besides it would work better as a team project rather than the project of an individual.
One thing that would need to be done is working out the style of the magazine. Thorf is an expert on the house style of official stuff, but it might also be good to look at the house style of The Tome of Mystara to see if that is something that should be used. You could probably have someone copy and paste old content to show what the format would look like, before the actual first issue of the new magazine is finished.
The Tome of Mystara existed in a time when long download times and lack of tools made PDF format less attractive. It is "formatted" in html, with a blue background, IIRC.

GP

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