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Magic: The Gathering‘s newest set explores the Forgotten Realms of Faerûn, and one can argue that it dives into the final lore of Dungeons & Dragons as properly. How else would you clarify the presence of playing cards such because the Eye and Hand of Vecna and the archmage Mordenkainen apart from the Adventures within the Forgotten Realms set can be a celebration of all issues D&D as properly?

In a press briefing for Fizban’s Treasury of Dragons on Monday, Wizards of the Coast senior sport designer James Wyatt talked about his current work on Magic‘s Forgotten Realms set and this new ebook. He’s labored on each Dungeons & Dragons and Magic: The Gathering throughout his 21 years at Wizards of the Coast (he wrote two of my favourite D&D books, the third Version Metropolis of the Spider Queen and Draconomicon tomes).

D&D continues to develop, using its greatest gross sales yr ever in 2020. And that momentum continues to hold over to of us watching precise play exhibits and streams resembling Critical Role’s Exandria Unlimited. Measurement agency StreamElements reviews that June was a powerful leap for D&D programming, with 3.8 million hours watching in 2021. In June 2020, in the course of the pandemic, the quantity was 1.4 million hours. The expansion between 2020 and 2021 is 167% year-over-year.

Wyatt introduced up a unbelievable level about granting characters resembling Lloth the standing of Planeswalker in Magic. In 1978’s Vault of the Drow module, the outdated TSR first launched Lloth, the Demon Queen of Spiders. And her webs weaved into a wide range of locations … and planes.

“As you’re exploring Lloth’s layer within the Abyss, this multilayered net, you get to the highest layer of net, and it’s stuffed with doorways resulting in different worlds with materials planes,” Wyatt stated. “So, she completely is no matter a Planeswalker is. She completely is a determine who’s focused on conquering a number of worlds and lengthening her degree of affect all throughout the fabric planes. She’s simply excellent in that position.

“And one of many issues I really like about that journey … that journey was the primary time that my eyes have been open to the chance that not simply the world that I’m taking part in D&D in, however all these different worlds, might exist.”

And why are these portals vital? On the time, D&D‘s revealed worlds have been mainly simply Blackmoor and Greyhawk. The Vault’s story takes place in Greyhawk. Whereas the concept that of us could be making their very own worlds existed, together with numerous planes of existence (together with a number of materials locations), the concept of Lloth visiting different planes and lording over the drow of many worlds was one thing novel for a lot of gamers.

And all of this ties into Fizban’s Treasury of Dragons as properly. (To study extra about this ebook and D&D’s different product bulletins, tune into D&D Dwell starting midday Pacific on Saturday on G4TV’s Twitch channel).

Dragons, too?

Above: The choice cowl for Fizban’s Treasury of Dragons would look nice on any shelf.

Picture Credit score: Wizards of the Coast

TSR (and later Wizards of the Coast) would play with this concept many instances over time. Paladine and Takhisis of Dragonlance fame? They’re facets of Bahamut, the god of metallic dragons, and Tiamat, the goddess of evil dragons.

One in all at the moment’s product bulletins is Fizban’s Treasury of Dragons. This new D&D complement dives into all issues draconic, and its authors are Wyatt (he’s kinda Wizards’ dragonlord at this level) and Amy Vorpahl. It debuts October 19. It brings again gem dragons, the wyrms who take after valuable stones resembling emerald and sapphire and have psionic powers along with their draconic skills (it provides gem dragonborn, too).

It additionally introduces the First World, the unique dwelling of dragons. Bahamut and Tiamat play a task in its creation … and its destruction. It feels becoming, for the reason that battle between the 2 dragon gods impacts quite a few world, particularly Krynn (the setting for the Dragonlance marketing campaign).

Fizban is one other facet of Paladine on Krynn. On this guise, Paladine is a doddering outdated wizard who befriends the Heroes of the Lance and helps them (he additionally has a keenness for casting fireballs). However his kindness and knowledge additionally function an ethical compass for the younger adventurers within the Dragonlance saga.

Fizban’s Treasury of Dragons additionally modifications how Nice Wyrms work in D&D. They’ve all the time been the oldest and strongest of dragons, usually greater than 1,200 years outdated. However now, their roots transcend the fabric aircraft.

“We have now a few stat blocks within the bestiary chapter which might be Nice Wyrms, dragons which have superior past the facility of even an historical dragon within the Monster Handbook. These use the mythic monster expertise that we debuted in Mythic Odysseys of Theros to be actually exceptionally difficult encounters on their very own — virtually like combating two monsters back-to-back, each of that are at problem rankings above 20,” Wyatt stated. “They’re great forces of magic in nature, that transfer the world round them and wreak havoc wherever they go. Or, you recognize, this can be a silver one, so it’s in all probability good, proper?”

However now, they’ll draw on the facility of their “echoes,” their draconic counterparts somewhere else within the D&D multiverse, giving them some planeswalker taste of their very own.

“There’s an thought of operating by means of this ebook that each dragon has echoes of itself on different worlds of the Materials aircraft,” Wyatt stated, noting that this isn’t a Dragonlance ebook. “This actually is a ebook about dragons in each D&D world, and never simply any D&D world, however each D&D world.

“Dragons have these echoes that hyperlink them by means of some mysterious means to dragon another worlds. And the concept behind the Nice Wyrm is that, at the least to some extent, a few of their enhanced energy comes from combining the facility of a number of echoes right into a single dragon. So dragons that we all know from legends, like Ashardalon, Chronepsis, or Aasterinian, who’ve been introduced as dragon gods prior to now typically, we’re describing them as these Nice Wyrms who’ve managed to increase their energy and affect past a single world and mix the facility of a number of echoes to turn out to be extremely highly effective creatures.”

Above: Fizban the Fabulous is keen on his buddy, a gold dragon disguised as a hen. And fireballs. He loves his fireballs.

Picture Credit score: Wizards of the Coast

How does this work? Wyatt explains: “A given dragon within the Forgotten Realms may need an echo on the World of Greyhawk, and develop that sense of dragonsight so as to have the ability to talk, in a waking dream kind of method, with their echo in one other world, after which ultimately, maybe, mix that energy right into a single being.”

And all of this additionally ties into how dragons have energy within the lairs, their environment, and the way even their treasure hordes develop magical energies.

What’s attention-grabbing right here, from my perspective, is that with Fizban’s and The Wild Past the Witchlight, we’re getting extra into touring the planes and exploring different worlds within the fifth Version of Dungeons & Dragons. Bahamut additionally seems in Adventures within the Forgotten Realms as a planeswalker, which inserts fairly properly with this concept of dragons reaching out into the planes.

I’ve no inside info right here, however by increasing the multiverse and speaking about how numerous beings draw energy and discover it, I can’t assist however suppose that one of many two outdated campaigns that D&D govt producer Ray Winninger teased goes to be related to both Planescape or Spelljammer.

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