Question on new Lankhmar 5E book and magic.

Fritz Leiber's Lankhmar setting, home to the legendary Fafhrd and Gray Mouser, is the first officially licensed setting for the DCC RPG.

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wmarshal
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Question on new Lankhmar 5E book and magic.

Post by wmarshal »

With the 5E book for Lankhmar announced are there any thoughts that can be shared as to how 5E’s powerful magic be integrated with the more muted magic seen when reading Lankhmar fiction?
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Re: Question on new Lankhmar 5E book and magic.

Post by CapnZapp »

I've seen many settings converted to D&D.

ALL of them end up more D&D than whatever they were before.

Every D&D conversion works well for the gamer who wants an experience that remains decidedly D&D, just lightly seasoned with whatever IP you're converting, be it Warcraft, Call of Cthulhu, Lord of the Rings, Conan the Barbarian or whatever.

But if you have serious concerns about the core elements of D&D, just don't use D&D - learn a different set of rules that is actually suited for the IP you want to experience.

It always boils down to a choice. Either prioritize familiarity with the D&D ruleset, or prioritize having an experience specific to the IP that D&D just cannot and will never give you. (Both choices are fine, btw)


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Re: Question on new Lankhmar 5E book and magic.

Post by finarvyn »

I think that the Lord of the Rings 5E rules (Adventures in Middle-earth) are an excellent example of how 5E can make a world come alive in ways not the same as the standard core rulebook. The way AiMe put a culture/race spin on classes, for example, gives a solid Middle-earth spin to the rules. The way magic is handled mutes the magic-user class somewhat, again to give a Middle-earth feel. I didn't think 5E could fit Tolkien until I saw the way that Cubicle-7 did this.

With that as a lens, I can see that a Lankhmar rules set using 5E could work well as long as it's designed by someone who understands Lankhmar. The DCC Lankhmar rules have the right feel, so I can imagine a successful 5E Lankhmar by the same authors.
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Re: Question on new Lankhmar 5E book and magic.

Post by CapnZapp »

finarvyn wrote: Tue May 17, 2022 2:38 pm I think that the Lord of the Rings 5E rules (Adventures in Middle-earth) are an excellent example of how 5E can make a world come alive in ways not the same as the standard core rulebook. The way AiMe put a culture/race spin on classes, for example, gives a solid Middle-earth spin to the rules. The way magic is handled mutes the magic-user class somewhat, again to give a Middle-earth feel. I didn't think 5E could fit Tolkien until I saw the way that Cubicle-7 did this.

With that as a lens, I can see that a Lankhmar rules set using 5E could work well as long as it's designed by someone who understands Lankhmar. The DCC Lankhmar rules have the right feel, so I can imagine a successful 5E Lankhmar by the same authors.
That's fair.

I hope you can see how another gamer could say that AiME remains squarely a D&D experience, that does not come close to the experience a dedicated game like, say, The One Ring, is able to provide.

My point is not to say "playing AiME is wrong and you're a bad gamer for doing it". There is nothing wrong with playing AiME, and you're not a bad gamer for doing it. I might personally have wished for your players to get a... more high-fidelity, less diluted, LOTR experience where hit points and levels just don't exist, but... your game, your choice!

My point is simply to put out a reminder to anyone concerned about, say, the subtlety of magic in Lankhmar, that you are very likely better off with a specialized product. In short, it's easy to forget how D&D-ian every D&D conversion ends up looking and feeling.

That doesn't mean playing with D&D-Lankhmar is bad. It just means you have chosen to give priority to very practical things like "let's keep the same rules everyone already knows" and similar priorities.

Why am I bringing this up?

Because once we agree on your set of priorities, I can make the argument to keep things as-is. Yes, there will likely be issues with how 5E’s powerful magic be integrated with the more muted magic seen when reading Lankhmar fiction. But since we now agree you have prioritized ease of play, rules familiarity and such, maybe that's acceptable?


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Re: Question on new Lankhmar 5E book and magic.

Post by finarvyn »

CapnZapp, I think we're on the same page overall with this, or at least more similar than different. In the case of my group (family, so hard to just walk away from) my players are much more interested in 5E than any other rules set. We may play something like DCC for a short while, but they always want to return to 5E. For me, having variant 5E rules sets which are similar enough to what they know but also fit a niche I want to expose them to ... well, that's a good thing.

The downside, of course, is that Goodman Games will only invest a certain amount of resources to the Lankhmar IP, so if they are producing more 5E Lankhmar that means probably less DCC Lankhmar. :(
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Re: Question on new Lankhmar 5E book and magic.

Post by GnomeBoy »

finarvyn wrote: Thu May 26, 2022 6:30 pm The downside, of course, is that Goodman Games will only invest a certain amount of resources to the Lankhmar IP, so if they are producing more 5E Lankhmar that means probably less DCC Lankhmar. :(
There are separate 5e and DCC creative teams, so I don't imagine it actually slows anything down -- it might even mean MORE Lankhmar content, using the license to the fullest possible amount!
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Re: Question on new Lankhmar 5E book and magic.

Post by finarvyn »

GnomeBoy wrote: Fri May 27, 2022 6:10 am
finarvyn wrote: Thu May 26, 2022 6:30 pm The downside, of course, is that Goodman Games will only invest a certain amount of resources to the Lankhmar IP, so if they are producing more 5E Lankhmar that means probably less DCC Lankhmar. :(
There are separate 5e and DCC creative teams, so I don't imagine it actually slows anything down -- it might even mean MORE Lankhmar content, using the license to the fullest possible amount!
That would be fantastic. I've said many times that the DCC RPG feels to me like it was designed with Leiber's books in mind (patrons, the way magic works, fighter actions, etc.) and to me the more Lankhmar content the better. I will buy full product lines for both. 8)
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DCC Minister of Propaganda; Deputized 6/8/11 (over 11 years of SPAM bustin'!)
DCC RPG playtester 2011, DCC Lankhmar trivia contest winner 2015; OD&D player since 1975

"The worthy GM never purposely kills players' PCs, He presents opportunities for the rash and unthinking players to do that all on their own."
-- Gary Gygax
"Don't ask me what you need to hit. Just roll the die and I will let you know!"
-- Dave Arneson
"Misinterpreting the rules is a shared memory for many of us"
-- Joseph Goodman
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