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WotC's talislanta-l mailing list and AOL community

Posted: Fri Jun 22, 2018 5:58 pm
by Big Mac
I just saw (on page 2 of Sub-Men Rising) that Wizards of the Coast used to run a bespoke mailing list (called talislanta-l) on their listserv mailing list service.

I also saw that they had a Talislanta folder on their AOL community.

Did anyone here take part in the Talislanta Mailing List or hang out at the AOL community?

How big were the two communities?

Did anything of them get archived? If so, has any of it been put up on Talislanta.com?

Re: WotC's talislanta-l mailing list and AOL community

Posted: Fri Jun 22, 2018 7:05 pm
by writermonk
There have been (that I know of) two different Yahoo! groups lists...

As I recall, the initial Y!Group was the original WotC talislanta-l list (or migrated to that?). Then Yahoo did some restructuring of its groups and message board organization and the second Y! group list was made. (Incidentally, it's still up, but it's not necessarily active any longer. Most discussion happens either on individual boards like this, the FB group, reddit, etc.). The Y! list had about 400 accounts connected to it.

Some of the articles that used to be there are still there AND archived on Talislanta.com - mostly under the Fan materials subheadings (there's about 4 or 5 different pages there divided into archetypes, fiction, spells, and so on).

However, at a quick glance, I can tell that there's some stuff that's not there. I'll have to track that down when I've got more time.

Re: WotC's talislanta-l mailing list and AOL community

Posted: Fri Jun 22, 2018 7:06 pm
by writermonk
Also, the stuff that is 'archived' are simply small bits that were cleaned up and presented as individual usable material, usually by one author.

The actual conversations and discussion threads aren't really saved anywhere (except that one still extant but inactive Y! Group).

Re: WotC's talislanta-l mailing list and AOL community

Posted: Fri Jun 22, 2018 8:11 pm
by Big Mac
writermonk wrote:
Fri Jun 22, 2018 7:05 pm
As I recall, the initial Y!Group was the original WotC talislanta-l list (or migrated to that?). Then Yahoo did some restructuring of its groups and message board organization and the second Y! group list was made. (Incidentally, it's still up, but it's not necessarily active any longer. Most discussion happens either on individual boards like this, the FB group, reddit, etc.). The Y! list had about 400 accounts connected to it.
Interesting.

When I was on one of WotC's other mailing lists (spelljammer-l) it definitely was not run on Yahoo! I think it was called Oracle.

It was a WotC server and eventually they shut it down and deleted mailist postings for lots of D&D campaign settings.

There was no talislanta-l at that time, but they had also pulled the mailing list for Wheel of Time. I'm guessing that if something is licence, WotC gets rid of the fan support, when the licence runs out. (It's one reason I like third-party fan support.)

Re: WotC's talislanta-l mailing list and AOL community

Posted: Tue Jun 26, 2018 9:52 pm
by Havard
Isn't it a bit odd that WotC ran a forum for a setting they did not own the rights to?

-Havard

Re: WotC's talislanta-l mailing list and AOL community

Posted: Wed Jun 27, 2018 2:12 am
by The Dark
Wizards had the license from 1992-94, and sold some older Bard books - I have a copy of A Naturalist's Guide to Talislanta that has Bard Games on the spine and a WotC sticker on the back cover.

Re: WotC's talislanta-l mailing list and AOL community

Posted: Wed Jun 27, 2018 2:28 am
by writermonk
Yeah, Talislanta and The Primal Order were WotC's first foray's into gaming. They had the licenses for a few years, sold a bunch of books, and then hit on some card game idea and subsequently dropped RPGs to focus on that. Ha! Silly ol' gents.

Then later on, they translated the success of their card game into buying D&D.

Interestingly enough, the man at WotC behind 3rd edition D&D is the same guy who was overseeing the stuff for Talislanta when they owned it. There are some similarities between the two but that only makes sense because they both came out of the same source (Tal grew out of SMS's homebrew stuff for D&D through his Atlantis/Compleat series).

Re: WotC's talislanta-l mailing list and AOL community

Posted: Wed Jun 27, 2018 2:42 am
by The Dark
Funnily enough, The Lexicon (for Atlantis) is the only Bard book I have other than the Naturalist's Guide. I think I got it from Lloyd Brown's shop in Jacksonville.