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The Guns of Karrnath?

My Eberron project, The Forge of War, has been officially announced, so I guess I can discuss it here, insofar as my NDA allows.
  • Yes, it's an Eberron book about the Last War.

  • Yes, I wrote it with mouseferatu and James Wyatt.

  • Yes, I wrote a lot of history and battle descriptions, as well as a little crunch.

  • James and I politely disagreed about some questions of historical motives (and as the in-house guy, I'm sure he gets the last word).

  • I patched up the gaps of Eberron's timeline, and I think people are in for a few surprises.

That about covers it; beyond that, I'm off the NDA, I think.

It's a project I enjoyed, but despite spending a fair amount of time sorting through the fine points and contradictions of the setting, Eberron hasn't quite won me over. Maybe it's just because I've been reading so much darker stuff lately (Poe, Stross, and Mieville), but Eberron's pretensions to noir aren't cutting it for me. Halflings on dinosaurs, magic trains, and the evil cardinals of the Silver Flame all add up to "slightly campy pulp" to me, not noir. That said, The Forge of War plays it straight: no jokes, no humor, downplay the goofy elements as much as possible. It's a military-focussed book, written to detail and incorporate the defining events of the setting. I'll be very curious to hear what people say about it.

Part of me wants to write an all-warforged Eberron one-shot done up in a Sgt. Rock or Nick Fury style, maybe for Open Design, maybe just to run for a local group. Everyone goes out in a blaze of glory!


Jul. 8th, 2007 03:21 am (UTC)
Part Two
You speak to the innate clash between a semi-industrial culture and a feudal society, and I agree. In my opinion, this IS a central theme of Eberron; essentially, the feudal system IS collapsing as the power of the dragonmarked houses grows. If I could change two things, one would be the scale of the maps; the other would be the scale of time. One of the goals behind Eberron is "If a culture had arcane science in the middle ages instead of the sciences we're used to - what sort of civilizations would arise?" Thus, I want to see the sort of advancement we see in OUR history - a snowballing effect where once things hit their stride, it can move with alarming speed. One of the things that could play to this is the question of when spells we take for granted were developed. When WAS continual flame developed? What about lightning bolt? Did any wizard of Galifar know the fly spell before the Last War? These are certainly questions I'd like to see addressed. The problem with this, frankly, is the lifespan of some of the humanoid races. When an elf can LIVE a thousand years, it's difficult to deal with what a thousand years realistically means for human civilization... because in two or three generations of elves, you should see vast cultural transformation among humanity.

So it's not perfect, no question about it. But it's still something I want to continue to explore. Essentially, looking to magic as industry, what ARE the milestones? It's possible that the major ones are more recent than we think - and that these are undermining of the traditional monarchies.

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