Dragonlance Being Developed for 5e?
Updated: Jan 26, 2021
It was announced today that authors Tracy Hickman and Margaret Weis were writing a new series of Classic Dragonlance books for Wizards of the Coast.
Great news; but what makes them classic? And why, all of a sudden, does it need a differentiator?
Which made us wonder, why are they adding the "Classic" in front?
<rampant speculation alert>
At D&D Celebration in 2020, Ray Winninger teased that over the next two years, at least three classic D&D settings are in the release pipeline. During Inside the D&D Studio, the final panel of D&D Celebration, Winninger gave us this:
"We're gonna try to stretch the boundaries of D&D by putting more settings out there, more places where
you can set your own adventures...there are three of the old settings that we're working on right now, that you'll be seeing in the next year or two, including some the fans have been asking for for a very long time."
Winninger didn't give any more insight into which three settings were coming but Dark Sun, Spelljammer, Greyhawk, Planescape, and Dragonlance are all possibilities.
You'll see where this is going, clearly. I think it's fair to expect Dragonlance to be one of these three.
Here are some of the reasons:
When I attended the media conference for Icewind Dale: Rime of the Frostmaiden, I asked Chris Perkins why he chose to set the storyline in Icewind Dale. His reply? He was asked to.
And that makes sense: D&D Dark Alliance, the video game in development by Tuque Games, follows R.A. Salvatore's trilogy The Crystal Shard and features characters from it (yes, including Drizzt.) Synergy. It's a business buzz word, and boy Hasbro (Wizards' parent company IS quite the business.) In fact, at the same press briefing, there was talk about how Rime and DA, were integrated; basically, in Rime you may go under a mountain, and in DA, you may go over it.
Then we have the "Classic" addition to the title of the new Dragonlance novels. What do you have to differentiate them from? And let's talk about a relaunched Dragonlance series right now. Since Wizards is big on brand synergy, and these books have been in the planning stages for a few years now, it would certainly make business sense to align multiple product lines together, which makes a campaign setting all the more likely.
Are these reasons flimsy? Sure, maybe. But speculation is the best part about this job. And if my rampant speculation is right, we might just see a lot more of Dragonlance in the near future.
Dragonlance logo from Deviantart