Open Letter to Mike Mearls and the Wizards Team about Mystara

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Havard
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Re: Open Letter to Mike Mearls and the Wizards Team about Mystara

Post by Havard » Sat May 19, 2018 5:01 pm

Currently WotC isn't even doing much for FR, so I don't think we need to worry too much about a badly done setting book for Mystara.

I would actually like for WotC to do a book called the Worlds of D&D, where they include a 5 page introduction of each setting for new fans. I think this should include 5 page entries for subsettings too, like Red Steel, Kara-Tur, etc.

But what we really don't need are people from WotC misrepresenting Mystara. Even if we just get the occasional name dropping, or talking about it on podcasts etc, we really need the people at WotC to understand what the setting is about.

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Re: Open Letter to Mike Mearls and the Wizards Team about Mystara

Post by agathokles » Sat May 19, 2018 8:00 pm

I think WotC already did the best thing they could for Mystara: bringing the books back in print, albeit on demand.
I'm not particularly looking forward to having Mystara in DM's Guild, nor to have a Mystara book or adventure by WotC -- actually, I do share at least in part Zendrolion's concern that an official release would weaken the community.

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Re: Open Letter to Mike Mearls and the Wizards Team about Mystara

Post by night_druid » Sat May 19, 2018 8:38 pm

Honestly I don't think anything will change. If WotC responds at all, it'll be the corporate-speak that I posted above, it all blows over, and hardly registers as a blip on WotC's radar. I take the hobbit attitude towards WotC; its better to just let them ignore us, and the settings we enjoy. As Agathokles said, best thing they've done is just putting things in POD and PDF and leave it at that.If they get to putting Mystara, Dark Sun, or any other setting into DMGuild, fine. If not, meh.
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Re: Open Letter to Mike Mearls and the Wizards Team about Mystara

Post by NPCDave » Sun May 20, 2018 1:12 am

My .02 cents...

Someone at WotC, possibly Mearls, mentioned at one time that they would love to bring back all the campaign settings, but that was in the context of it happening on a case by case when and if a setting is commercially feasible. We saw what they did with Ravenloft, it got a big adventure book that covered only Barovia, and I think a board game and some miniatures, along with the entire setting IP released for anyone to develop on DMsGuild.

Dark Sun is coming next, and it will most likely follow the same pattern, a big book release, some supporting miniatures, a board game, and the IP released for future development on DMsGuild. And if they change that template it probably won't change that much, but we will have Dark Sun's template to set future expectations.

Before Mystara gets touched, we can expect Greyhawk and either Planescape or Spelljammer(possibly both) to get the release treatment. That is a minimum of 2-3 years of more development, so now we are talking about the year 2021 or 2022 at the earliest. How long will 5th Edition be around? If they ever decide to release a 6th Edition, that will reset everything, and first thing they will need to do is redo the Forgotten Realms one more time.

So Mystara at best is on the tail end of WotC's multi-year road map for product development, and that is perfectly consistent with how the loremaster was not familiar with the setting and could only throw out some vague impressions from hazy memory. If they were actually working on the setting to get it ready for release next year, he would have probably been more familiar with it.

So nothing is changing for Mystara anytime soon, and we will have a better idea of how WotC will treat Mystara based on how they do with any other settings they release in the meantime.

As far as an open letter, I think rather than offer our expertise we should just invite them to review the old BECMI adventures and the Gazeteer line.

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Re: Open Letter to Mike Mearls and the Wizards Team about Mystara

Post by RobJN » Sun May 20, 2018 3:14 am

X10 = Known World Risk
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Re: Open Letter to Mike Mearls and the Wizards Team about Mystara

Post by Thorf » Wed May 23, 2018 3:54 am

Update: I've shelved this idea for now.

Fan consensus seems to be not to prod the sleeping bear, and potentially risk losing what we have built over these past 25 years or so.

While I don't agree with this 100%, it's certainly not because I have confidence that Wizards would treat Mystara right. (I doubt any of us could say that with a straight face.) After all, they have consistently proven that they don't even know what Mystara is, and without someone like Bruce on board they would surely botch whatever they tried.

Moreover, the chance that they would even think about using Mystara seems almost as low as our confidence in them.

As you know, this idea came from my reaction to the latest incident from Wizards, and my thought was only to turn this into a positive. But perhaps we have already done that now. As I mentioned in the first post of the thread, John Tudek started a wonderful thread over at Mystara Reborn on Facebook in which we shared what makes Mystara special to us. Perhaps that's enough.

The bottom line is that as a community we are stronger than ever, I think, and I don't disagree that waking the sleeping bear that is Wizards of the Coast could prove more damaging than helpful to our causes. So I'll stop making waves and get back to my maps. ;)

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Re: Open Letter to Mike Mearls and the Wizards Team about Mystara

Post by Ambreville » Wed May 23, 2018 4:21 am

Thanks, Thorf. Your efforts to try to turn a negative into a positive is all to your credit. Cheers!
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Re: Open Letter to Mike Mearls and the Wizards Team about Mystara

Post by stebehil » Sun Jun 10, 2018 3:34 pm

Sorry for beating a dead horse, but I think this reinforces the point that Wizards should probably leave Mystara alone. I just read the newest book, Mordenkainens Tome of Foes. The first half of the book deals with fiends, elves, dwarves, gnomes and halflings (and gith), and provides a background to all these "people". This includes a creation story and racial offshoots for the demi-humans. The creation stories are basically those given back in the AD&D era already, and don´t mesh with mystaran history. The offshoots (drow, duergar and svirfneblin) are not part of the racial backgrounds for Mystara. The fiends, with their blood war and cosmology, also do not fit here. I had the idea of somehow reconciling this work with the mystaran versions of it, but I don´t think that it will work.

I take this book as the "official stance" of Wizards on these topics, even if they would need to change it for Dark Sun, for example. But with Mystara being seen as "yet another standard fantasy world" for the most part, I´d assume that they would rewrite Mystara to accomodate these standards, rather than going the extra mile and try to recreate Mystara more faithfully. So, this strengthens the point that Mystara should be left for the fans to expand upon IMO.

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Re: Open Letter to Mike Mearls and the Wizards Team about Mystara

Post by Dread Delgath » Sun Jun 10, 2018 9:31 pm

I am helplessly out of touch with the recent happenings, but after reading this thread, two things come to mind:

1) After seeing what WotC has done to the Forgotten Realms and TSR to 2e Mystara, I am not one bit surprised. The shoehorning of other settings to make it more appealing to modern gamers who like the new races & classes, it is no longer the Forgotten Realms or Mystara. Those lands, truly are forgotten and left in mystery, or at least re-written by the historical (hysterical?) revisionists.

2) Now Mystara fans know exactly how I felt about the post 1990's Greyhawk material and the Western Portion of Oeridia beyond the Sea of Dust. Although I am certain that I am the only Greyhawk fan in the world who hates what Greyhawk has become (along with a bald Mordenkainen), as legions of Greyhawk devotees flocked to the internet to participate in an industry wide Greyhawk MMORP (except for me - I didn't have internet until 2000). Still, my original vision of what Greyhawk is and anything that I ever had planned for it is now and forever corrupted by what every other Greyhawk fan in the world expects when they sit at my table.

I wish to Gygax and Arneson that they'd never touched my beloved campaign world with their clutching hands ever-ready to pull down another profit at the expense of someone else's attempt at independent imagination & joy. :evil:

Yeah, I still would like to see something in 5e for Greyhawk, but I'm not sure I want an entire setting. Perhaps just a lone module, or an updated gazetteer, reminiscent of the 1981's World of Greyhawk Folio. I could do something with that - I mean, I could still do something with the 1981 Folio.

But my Mystara collection is still missing several out of print gazetteers. It would be nice to have the old originals just for a 5e game, but I don't need any conversions for that. I just need the originals. :cool:
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Re: Open Letter to Mike Mearls and the Wizards Team about Mystara

Post by stebehil » Tue Jun 12, 2018 7:22 pm

Dread Delgath wrote:
Sun Jun 10, 2018 9:31 pm
But my Mystara collection is still missing several out of print gazetteers. It would be nice to have the old originals just for a 5e game, but I don't need any conversions for that. I just need the originals. :cool:
If you don´t insist on originals, you could always go for digital/PoD copies from drivethrurpg - but I guess you know that. I´m at the moment at the point where I pack my originals into comic book bags with cardboards backing, as I don´t want them to get any worse. For reading, I´m using digital copies. If I were to play a Mystara game, I´d probably PoD the ones I need.

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Re: Open Letter to Mike Mearls and the Wizards Team about Mystara

Post by Morfie » Wed Jun 13, 2018 7:59 am

I hope they do something with Mystara. Even if it's something we don't care for, it would bring new fans to the setting, and to here. It can always be raided to bring something to us.

Mystara fan's are somewhat split anyway (albeit mostly amicable). I have come across 4 different groups in my travels:
1. The Pre-GAZ era who only like the BECMI material and associated modules.
2. The GAZ/RC era, where the majority seem to belong, but that is also split again into:
2a. The pre-WotI era.
2b. The post-WotI era.
3. The AD&D 2e conversion.

Unfortunately most Worlds had split their fanbase with TSR's prediliction to have World Shaking Events, and Moving Timelines.

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Re: Open Letter to Mike Mearls and the Wizards Team about Mystara

Post by Havard » Sat Jun 16, 2018 1:38 am

Discussion about game designers now and then split into a separate topic here.

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Re: Open Letter to Mike Mearls and the Wizards Team about Mystara

Post by Dread Delgath » Sat Jun 23, 2018 10:40 pm

Morfie wrote:
Wed Jun 13, 2018 7:59 am
I hope they do something with Mystara. Even if it's something we don't care for, it would bring new fans to the setting, and to here. It can always be raided to bring something to us.

Mystara fan's are somewhat split anyway (albeit mostly amicable). I have come across 4 different groups in my travels:
1. The Pre-GAZ era who only like the BECMI material and associated modules.
2. The GAZ/RC era, where the majority seem to belong, but that is also split again into:
2a. The pre-WotI era.
2b. The post-WotI era.
3. The AD&D 2e conversion.

Unfortunately most Worlds had split their fanbase with TSR's prediliction to have World Shaking Events, and Moving Timelines.
I almost fit into the first/second category, but slightly different: Pre-GAZ & GAZ era with BX rules! :P
My D&D 5th edition Dakan Mar Campaign setting Conspectus and Campaign Rules here at The Piazza Forums, a Fool's Errand WIP.

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