Grogheads: The Nostalgia of Mystara (Article)

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Grogheads: The Nostalgia of Mystara (Article)

Postby Havard » Mon Jul 10, 2017 7:30 pm

Brant Guillory, who was an active member of the Mystara community at the TSR AOL site back in the 1990s asked me to post about this article he has published about Mystara at the Grogheads website:

http://grogheads.com/pix/15538

The article has lots of nice photos of Mystara material. Pandius and Threshold Magazine get mentions in the article.

Enjoy! :)

-Havard

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Re: Grogheads: The Nostalgia of Mystara (Article)

Postby Robin » Tue Jul 11, 2017 10:34 am

it is nice they mention Pandius and Threshold as being current the best source :P
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Re: Grogheads: The Nostalgia of Mystara (Article)

Postby Chimpman » Tue Jul 11, 2017 6:34 pm

Wow, that's a great article (and nice shout-outs from the author)! Thanks for sharing!
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Re: Grogheads: The Nostalgia of Mystara (Article)

Postby Havard » Wed Jul 12, 2017 1:11 pm

Grogheads wrote:The DA series of modules were a challenging bolt-on. You can find exposés elsewhere on the web about how Dave Arneson split with TSR and how the rights to Blackmoor stayed with the company, but TSR insisted on using them with BECMI (so Arneson never got any royalties for AD&D? some think so) and so that meant Blackmoor eventually had to be incorporated into Mystara somehow. The secret was to set it not at another place on the planet, but at another time. The four modules of the DA series form an entertaining campaign, but quite frankly, they don’t feel like Mystara because they really aren’t Mystara.


Not sure how I feel about this section here. I don't think Blackmoor had to be incorporated into Mystara. I think the decision to link the DA modules to the Known World's past was made before Bruce Heard became product manager. I asked Harold Johnson about this and he says the was the one who brought Dave Arneson back. He also said he left much of the decision to David Ritchie (credited as Arneson's co-designer for the modules), so it is not really clear why they wanted to connect Blackmoor and the Known World. It does make sense from a marketing point of view.

I also think that once the gazetteers started rolling out, Blackmoor became a useful tool for adding a high technological past to the setting. This was not an uncommon trope in fantasy prior to Mystara either so it seems like it must have been something that the designers caught onto and perhaps utilised more than they would have had to if it only felt forced.

Of course it can be argued that Blackmoor as presented in the Gazetteers is quite different from the Blackmoor from the DA modules, since the Gazetteers usually refer to Blackmoor at the peak of its civilisation, while the DA modules deal with the times and events that would have driven that civilisation towards those later heights.

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Re: Grogheads: The Nostalgia of Mystara (Article)

Postby oleck » Fri Jul 14, 2017 4:12 pm

Wow i wish i had all the colection. But in Mexico it was really dificult to find this books. At the 80s there wasnt too much diference between dollar and mexican peso. In those times with 3 pesos we could buy a dollar. And for families it was easy to go to USA and buy stuff. I knew each 3 month my parrents would take us to USA a weekend. And i bought everithing i could. And a friend of mine did the same. Thats how we made our small colection. Like 10 years ago i sold all my colection of AD&D first edition at a comic convention in Mexico City, i sold it very good. Now i only have Clasic D&D books some of then in not good shape.
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