Thanks for this.RobJN wrote: ↑Fri Oct 12, 2018 10:22 amOn splitting the fan base, I'll point you to the 2001 Wizards' announcement about shutting down the Alternity line:In Conclusion
It has become increasingly important to Wizards of the Coast to focus our attention on increasing the number of people who know how to play our core roleplaying games and helping them stay active gamers longer. Having two slightly different sets of rules in Alternity and Dungeons & Dragons makes it difficult to focus the company's resources on developing and retaining players. That is the driving reason behind our decision to shift resources away from continuing to develop the Alternity game. In the future, we will continue to explore the worlds of science fiction roleplaying using rules that are derived from 3rd Edition Dungeons & Dragons.
This is not quite what I was expecting (as I am pretty sure it predates Mike Mearls working at WotC).
I'd say this was WotC saying that they were going to switch from the Alternity rules to what would become the d20 Modern (and d20 Future) rules.
If you look at what Paizo have done with Starfinder, they have made a game that (I think) is mostly compatible with Pathfinder, so that some stuff made for one game can be used with the other game.
5e seems to have learned from Paizo's better engagement with the fanbase. If WotC could create a 5e version of d20 Modern...and build in at least one of the classic Alternity or other TSR/WotC science fiction settings, I think it would do well.