R.I.P.: Dragon and Dungeon magazines
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Post Posted: Thu Apr 19, 2007 10:41 pm 
 

Well, I for one am torn.  For one, like others, I haven't seen anything useful come out in a Dragon or Dungeon Magazine in many years.  That being said with them still being published it still allowed a small window of hope that they would one day return to the roots thay came from up to and including not being a complete and utter shill for WotC.  You know what I am talking about, the old Dragon Mags pimping all kinds of different RPGs from different companies including D&D.  All the cool old school artwork and the touch of someone who cared about the game as much as you did that was included in those old magazines that was lost whenever Wizbro took over.  Now it seems that will forever be lost in time and I think thats what is really tragic about this.

Thinking about it though, it all kind of makes sense.  I think that this may very well be the first shot fired in the new 4E saga.  Think about it.  If the rumors are true, Wizbro is supposed to be announced 4E, this year.  Also, interesting that this new product is scheduled to come out in August of this year, which amazingly enough also corresponds to the same month that GenCon goes down.  Can anyone else smell a huge announcement coming in August at GenCon.  Maybe its just the fact that new 4E and and an in print Magazine product are not going to very compatible.  When you consider that the rumors have also said that the new 4E game is supposed to rely even more heavliy on Miniatures,  things just start to add up a certain way.  I mean, I do not want to be the starter of any rumors and I am not certainly in the know per se, but it all seems to add up to one place.... 4E. :)


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Post Posted: Thu Apr 19, 2007 10:47 pm 
 

A quick clarification:

Xaxaxe wrote:Paizo is going to pull the plug on the two long-time D&D publications ... and WotC doesn't want them back:


Lisa Stevens has advised in various industry lists that WotC did not renew the license for Dragon and Dungeon with Paizo; Paizo would have been happy to continue publishing the magazines in perpetuity.  

Personally, I think this is WotC trying to pull the teeth from Paizo, who have been out-performing WotC for quite some time, in terms of the quality, usefulness, and artistry in the D&D content that they're publishing.


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Post Posted: Fri Apr 20, 2007 12:13 am 
 

grodog wrote:A quick clarification:



Lisa Stevens has advised in various industry lists that WotC did not renew the license for Dragon and Dungeon with Paizo; Paizo would have been happy to continue publishing the magazines in perpetuity.  

Personally, I think this is WotC trying to pull the teeth from Paizo, who have been out-performing WotC for quite some time, in terms of the quality, usefulness, and artistry in the D&D content that they're publishing.


Yeh, I'll continue to support Paizo, I hope they land on their feet. The WOTC move has such a Lorraine Williams-stench like quality to it.  We don't want the mag, but we are going to kill it anyway.  Maddening.  

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Post Posted: Fri Apr 20, 2007 12:55 am 
 

Although I didn't pick up too many issues of either magazine, I feel like I  lost two long-time friends in one fell-swoop.  It's a shame that WotC seems to have gutted anything D&D ever since they bought out TSR.  What are those guys smoking up there at WotC anyway?  DragonLance, now Dungeon and Dragon,  and how many other things . . . what's next?

  


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Post Posted: Fri Apr 20, 2007 1:08 am 
 

Badmike wrote: I may be going out on a limb, but the new publication has "complete failure" written all over it.  I would be surprised if it survives the first adventure path, but I'm sure even losing money they'll give ita couple of years.

I'm on the same limb, then. I give Adventure Path two years, tops ... at some point, even the worst of the 3e drones are going to stop paying $20 per month for what amounts to nothing more than a big dungeon.

grodog wrote:Lisa Stevens has advised in various industry lists that WotC did not renew the license for Dragon and Dungeon with Paizo; Paizo would have been happy to continue publishing the magazines in perpetuity.

I think you're right ... this is beginning to emerge already, at other gaming sites, as the "real" story. So apologies to any Paizo fans; it looks like I was too quick to lump then in with the real rapscallions.

+++++

I'm not going to make too big of a deal out of this — and I'm not asking for anybody to join me or anything like that — but my lifetime boycott of WotC begins right now.

For instance, I had some money set aside to buy all of the "Expedition To ... " products, but I think I'll just keep those bills in my pocketses now. Ditto for some other products that I've been mildly curious about, such as the Dreamblade minis game, or the D&D Miniatures line, which I've dabbled with off-and-on for years. No more, though: WotC will never see another penny from me.

I wonder what Scott Rouse, Senior Brand Manager, would think of that. Actually, strike that, I already know the answer — as long as his checks clear, it's soulless borgs like him that are quite happy to make these kinds of decisions.

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Post Posted: Fri Apr 20, 2007 1:38 am 
 

My boycott began about a month after I made the mistake of buying d20 Fantasy, thinking that there were going to be actual improvements instead of the fetid pile of dog shit that we got.  Trust me, it's money better spent on stuff from companies that actually give a damn about us.



  

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Post Posted: Fri Apr 20, 2007 10:58 am 
 

I for one am going to purchase the new stuff from Paizo.  Subscriptions are 30% off the cover, large well fleshed out adventures (96 pages) with glossy pages and artwork.  I am very disappointed at the canceling of the mags but I am not going to fixate on it whatsoever.

The large adventures by Goodman are good as well, just not as fleshed out as the adventure path stuff.


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Post Posted: Fri Apr 20, 2007 11:13 am 
 

Blackmoor wrote:I for one am going to purchase the new stuff from Paizo.  Subscriptions are 30% off the cover, large well fleshed out adventures (96 pages) with glossy pages and artwork.  I am very disappointed at the canceling of the mags but I am not going to fixate on it whatsoever.

The large adventures by Goodman are good as well, just not as fleshed out as the adventure path stuff.


Nothing personal Jeff, but the whole large well fleshed out adventures and "Adventure Path" thing makes me want to Image.  It just sounds bleh.


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Post Posted: Fri Apr 20, 2007 1:46 pm 
 

Well...it couldn't last forever.

Dragon and Dungeon were like old friends that I didn't talk to very often.

They will be missed.

The rise in cover prices and the extremely steep layout for a subscription had kept me away.

I've got a suspicion that if there is any money left in their graves then someone will certainly dig them up again.

Mark


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Post Posted: Fri Apr 20, 2007 1:50 pm 
 

bclarkie wrote:Thinking about it though, it all kind of makes sense.  I think that this may very well be the first shot fired in the new 4E saga.  Think about it.  If the rumors are true, Wizbro is supposed to be announced 4E, this year.

I think you hit the nail on the head.  If the cancellation of Dungeon/Dragon is any hint, 4E will not be printed at all.  It'll be a downloadable version of the rules, probably in PDF format.  It seems WotC is getting out of print publishing entirely.

Considering the fact that somebody is going to make a PDF of the new rules and illegally distribute them online anyway, they may as well try to get some cash out of the deal from legitimate customers, first.  Perhaps even a "subscription" model where you can get new rules updates every month.  It truly is becoming an online video game.  :wink:

I hope I didn't make the above sound like a good idea, because it's not.  Welcome, disenfranchised 3Eers!  (Now you know what we've been going on about.)

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Post Posted: Fri Apr 20, 2007 1:59 pm 
 

FormCritic wrote:Dragon and Dungeon were like old friends that I didn't talk to very often.

That's an apt description; well-said.

It's one day later, and I'm still pissed about this development. I guess I just don't like seeing my old friends put out to pasture to make room for some ridiculous Dungeon-O-The-Month-For-A-Mere-Twenty-Bucks scam that will be lucky to last a year.

On a larger scale, we all have two fewer direct links to old-school D&D now. Love or hate the current 3e content, Dragon and Dungeon at least had some historical significance.

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Post Posted: Sat Apr 21, 2007 3:57 pm 
 

Here is the response from WOTC (yesterday). Somewhat more sensitive,  and at least recognising the history of the hobby.  Still smells to me of  suspiciously fake sentimentality and crocodile tears :evil:   By the way - some of the angry messages on their boards were hilarious  :D

http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=dnd/dnd/20070420a


Reflections on the D&D Magazines
Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow

DRAGON® Magazine and DUNGEON® Magazine have been a part of the DUNGEONS & DRAGONS® experience for more than three decades, and the end of an era always stirs up all kinds of emotions.

I'm a fan. For me, the summer of 1977 was shaped by the trinity of Star Wars, The Sword of Shannara, and endless evenings and weekends wrapped up in the DUNGEONS & DRAGONS® game. That summer laid the groundwork for my professional career, a career that started nine years later when I was hired by West End Games as an editor and sold my first D&D adventure to DUNGEON Magazine.

Yesterday was an emotional day. It was emotional for you. It was emotional for me. It was sad. It was bittersweet. It stirred up all kinds of memories … the good times, the not so good times. The D&D times.

Sometimes good friends move on. Sometimes business partnerships end. It wasn't an easy decision. It wasn't a one-sided decision. It wasn't a decision that was made lightly, maliciously, capriciously, or on a whim. We worked out a transition period with Paizo and negotiated the end of this particular era.

This ending isn't an execution—it's an evolution. Now comes the next era. We have a plan.

Yesterday was sad, but it was exciting, too. It's exciting because I know something that you don't know as yet. I know what happens next. And I can't wait to share that with you, in all its glory. But I can't do that today. There are business reasons, of course, and also practical reasons (to be frank, we're still finalizing some of the details). And there's also the fact that DRAGON Magazine and DUNGEON Magazine still have issues coming out from Paizo, and they deserve to have your undivided attention until the torch is officially passed back to us after issues #359 and #150.

I'm proud of the legacy of the D&D game, and the part the magazines have played in that legacy. I'm proud of the part I played in that legacy over the years—first as a gamer and Dungeon Master, then as a DUNGEON Magazine contributor, a D&D freelancer, a D&D game designer, and eventually the Director of all creative endeavors related to D&D.

My team here at Wizards includes many talented and dedicated gamers, including a number of people who started out working on DRAGON Magazine and DUNGEON Magazine. They helped shape and sustain the magazines over the years, and they have tons of creative talent and passion for the game. And all of them are involved in what comes next.

What follows is how this announcement impacted them, and some of the memories it stirred up.

Thanks for listening, and keep on playing!

—Bill Slavicsek, R&D Director for D&D Games, Book Publishing, and Star Wars Miniatures and Roleplaying; Dungeon Master, D&D Game Designer, former Editor-in-Chief of DRAGON Magazine and DUNGEON Magazine; custodian of the legend.


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I've seen DRAGON Magazine evolve from a basement operation into a work of art, from little more than a fanzine to one of the most widely read hobby magazines in the world. If anybody around here ought to be able to embrace change, it's me.

DRAGON has changed a lot on the outside over the decades I've known her, not only in production values but also in approach, physical specs, artwork, accessories… you name it. What keeps the old girl alive, though, is her never-ending goal of reaching the greatest number of people with the best possible content. Using a new delivery system doesn't have anything to do with compromising that goal.

—Kim Mohan, Editor of DRAGON Magazine, 1980--1987; current Editing Manager, RPG R&D


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I've been in love with DUNGEON magazine from the very start. I received Issue #1 in my mailbox when I was a teenager and scored my first published credit in the magazine before I turned twenty. In school, professors would ask me what I wanted to do with my life, and my reply was quick and simple: "I want to edit DUNGEON magazine." Ten years later, I became its editor-in-chief.

Today, twenty years after my first published credit in DUNGEON magazine, I'm part of the Wizards team responsible for creating D&D books, miniatures, and accessories. I want DUNGEON and DRAGON to be part of our plans for the future of the game, and I look forward to having them back in the fold. While this decision marks the end of an era, here are five words that make me feel better about the fate of DRAGON and DUNGEON magazines:

Nothing this good ever dies.
—Christopher Perkins, Design Manager, RPG R&D; Former Editor-in-Chief, DUNGEON Magazine (1997--2000); Former Associate Editor, DRAGON Magazine (1997--2000); 20-year contributor to DUNGEON and DRAGON Magazines


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Compared to Chris Perkins or Kim Mohan, I'm nobody. I've never written an article for DRAGON Magazine or DUNGEON Magazine, let alone contributed years of work to these iconic publications. My introduction to D&D was through my friend's brother in 1980. Much of my year in sixth grade was spent combing through his books, especially enjoying the art in the Monster Manual and Fiend Folio. Later that year I was introduced to Gamma World. In one sugar-fueled, midnight BMX session followed by a lengthy grounding, my game group was dismantled. Not long after this, I moved on to middle school and gaming lost its hold on me.

Unlike many people at Wizards of the Coast, I am not a life-long gamer. I came to Wizards in 2000 by way of the snowboard industry and discovered gaming for the second time in my life. This time it stuck. It started with my three-year stint working on MAGIC: THE GATHERING and continues today working on DUNGEONS & DRAGONS. I love D&D! I love to play D&D and do so every week. Currently, I am playing Yakama Stone, a 7th-level half-elf ranger on assignment in the jungles of EBERRON. I also love to work on D&D and want to see it grow and grow. More women, more teens, more adults, more people around the world should play D&D, and I have made that my single most important goal. With that in mind, I never do anything that I feel would work counter to that goal.

DRAGON Magazine and DUNGEON Magazine are pop-culture icons. They've been the cornerstones of the hobby for 31 years. This decision is a big deal, and the decision to move these to an online format was not taken lightly or done in a vacuum. Many people at Wizards gave careful consideration with months of deliberation and debate on the subject. This is a big deal and it is our full intention to continue to deliver the great content that the fans have come to expect from these magazines in a new medium.

—Scott Rouse, Senior Brand Manager, DUNGEONS & DRAGONS


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I was a red-box kid, so I first encountered DRAGON Magazine in the early 80s on the shelves of a local bookstore. It seems hard to convey how big a deal it was to me when "Pages from the Mages 3" showed me that you could actually make new spells. I simply hadn't seen that done before, so it was monstrously, monstrously big. It helped me realize that the potential for the game was far bigger than the rules written between the covers of the Player's Handbook. Some of that sense of wonder, that sense of "Wow! You can really do that!" serves to energize design ideas for me even today. Even with the power that those memories of early issues hold, it is more recent memories that usually surface when I think of the magazines, simply because I had the incredible good fortune of working on the magazines for five-ish years, starting as an associate editor for both magazines and eventually leaving as DRAGON Magazine's editor-in-chief. The magazines mean a lot to me, for both personal and professional reasons, and they will always be a treasured part of my D&D game. I can't wait to see their next incarnation.

—Jesse Decker, Development Manager, RPG R&D; Editor-in-Chief of DRAGON Magazine #287-#311


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The first issue of DRAGON Magazine that I purchased was #28, back in August 1979. I sent my first (appalling) submission to the magazine when I was still in middle school. My first article appeared in DRAGON in 1996, and I got my copy of that issue on the day my son was born. DRAGON and DUNGEON gave me my start in the game industry, and I still eagerly await each issue that shows up on my desk. I'm looking forward to working alongside the next crop of game designers who get their start in the online magazines and make their way to full-time jobs in the game industry—just like I did.

—James Wyatt, D&D Lead Story Designer; author of 45 articles and adventures in DRAGON Magazine and DUNGEON Magazine


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I started my tenure on DRAGON Magazine and DUNGEON Magazine as an assistant editor of the first 3rd Edition issues, but my love for the magazines began nearly 15 years earlier when I first learned to play D&D from a friend. His messy room was always strewn with the magazines, and I would frequently peruse them. Even now, when I think of a past issue of DRAGON or DUNGEON, I often see it in my mind's eye lying half-folded and looking slightly trampled on the frayed carpet of that room where we made our first forays into the fantastic worlds of our imaginations.

As I think about the magazines' future, I can't help but be excited. True, paper issues won't litter the floors of future game designers, but their contents, after having been on the periphery for so long, will once again be brought into the fold and become an integral part of the future of the D&D game.

Having worked on the magazines at Paizo, I'm familiar with the passion, dedication, and sacrifice it took to put together every issue every month, and I'm proud of the great work of my friends there. Looking about me at Wizards of the Coast, I see that same love for the game in spades, and I know we'll put that passion into our new takes on these cornerstones of the D&D experience.

—Matthew Sernett, D&D Game Designer and Former Editor-in-Chief of DRAGON Magazine


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Whenever I eat teriyaki, I will always think of DUNGEON Magazine.

Back in the summer of 2002, I was a fresh-faced, enthusiastic magazine editor. One year into my tenure as Editor of DUNGEON, we launched the first DUNGEON Adventure Path. The memory that stands out the most is when the first tenuous ideas for an Adventure Path really started to come together.

Stay with me—I'm getting to the teriyaki.

In the past, DUNGEON had always relied on its creative readership for content. DUNGEON did not solicit adventures from anyone. The magazine had always been fed from the slush pile. But if you're going to do a series, especially a long one, I didn't think I could rely on a bunch of different authors to work together without giving them an outline and some major pieces of the puzzle. It would be like asking five different chefs to create a perfect meal together, but have each of them cook in separate kitchens. You get a much better result if all the cooks work together from an existing menu.

I knew then and know now that I don't always have the best ideas—far from it. I think the best ideas come from a group of creative and engaged people working together. So one afternoon, Chris Perkins and I went out for—you guessed it—teriyaki. I told him my idea for an Adventure Path and told him, "I think we should do something using the Fiend Folio, maybe pick one of the monsters out of there to feature. I was thinking about the demodands." And we were off. We talked for a good two hours that afternoon until we had a basic premise for the campaign, a core of villains that became the Cagewrights, a vile plot to merge the prison plane of Carceri with the Material Plane, and of course, the city of Cauldron.

I told you I'd get to the teriyaki.

I also talked Chris into writing the first installment, and we brainstormed the outline for "Life's Bazaar." In the weeks and months that followed, before and after the move to Paizo, I got in touch with the best of the best in D&D adventure design. I called local folks in to the office for an Adventure Path summit. Looking back now, when we were just sitting at the table, ignoring our teriyaki, we forgot for a time we were paid to be doing this. We were just two gamers, two DMs, sitting around and goobing out about D&D. Anyone who has played D&D has had these moments, where your imagination gets firing and ideas just seem to leap from your skull.

Part of me still can't believe the magazines, in their current format, won't be around anymore after the summer. But when I look to the future and see what we have planned, I can't wait. Believe me, sometimes change really is for the best. I'm more excited than ever about the future of these gaming institutions. They're not really going anywhere; they're just coming home.

—Chris Thomasson, Editorial Assistant, DRAGON Magazine and DUNGEON Magazine, 1998--2000; Assistant Editor, DRAGON Magazine and DUNGEON Magazine, 2000--2001; Editor, DUNGEON Magazine, April 2001--June 2003; Editor-in-Chief, DRAGON Magazine, July 2003--October 2003; Editor, RPG R&D, Wizards of the Coast, November 2003--March 2007; Designer, RPG R&D, Wizards of the Coast, April 2007--???


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Post Posted: Sat Apr 21, 2007 4:02 pm 
 

David pointed this link out oover on DF and I'll post my same comments here as I did over there about it:

Don't you absolutely love how they run out the clowns trying to prove their worth to the gaming community with their "Gaming Resumes".   All saying the exact same thing in slightly different words about how they are "gamers" and how they all truely loved Dragon & Dungeon and that they valued the magazine for all that it did in the past and persent, but killing them both off is going to be good for everyone, trust them. :roll:   It makes me want to vomit.


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Last edited by bclarkie on Sat Apr 21, 2007 4:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.
  


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Post Posted: Sat Apr 21, 2007 4:05 pm 
 

red_bus wrote:We have a plan.

Yes, you do. And it SUCKS.

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Post Posted: Sat Apr 21, 2007 4:55 pm 
 

red_bus wrote:By the way - some of the angry messages on their boards were hilarious  :D

Wow! Wizards is getting pounded all across the web, especially on their own message boards. They've had to actually threaten their own users with bans if they don't stop posting boycott notices!

It looks like very few people are buying into the corporate spin machine that was rolled out yesterday.

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Post Posted: Sat Apr 21, 2007 5:26 pm 
 

One of the things that was important for me - was that Dragon was a newstand magazine.  That meant that whenever I walked into a newsagent it was there - reminding me, and importantly, everyone else, that there was this great hobby called D&D, and roleplaying games more broadly.  As more goes online, our hobby risks moving more into the 'niche' category and away from the mainstream.


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Post Posted: Sat Apr 21, 2007 5:36 pm 
 

in re Dragon magazine:

#1: The Game Begins
circa #100: Strike One (Gygax forced out)
#132: Strike Two (Wormy ends)
#236: Strike Three (The Last TSR Issue)
(Game Ends)
I haven't paid much attention to it since.


Other milestones prior to the WotC era are summarized on my Dragonsfoot board.

  

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Post Posted: Sat Apr 21, 2007 7:52 pm 
 

I concur with the sentiments here and I was a Dragon subscriber from #65 on thru #290'ish, as well as a subscriber of Dungeon & Polyhedron. What a shame it was when Polyhedron was extinguished or rather consumed by the changes of Dragon & Dungeon.

As for BClarkie's ponderings, I agree that his ideas have merit, but my other thoughts, after reading the post from Bill "salavating over all the money I've made" Slavicsek, is that they "WIZBRO" (love that moniker BC :lol: ) might be taking Dragon & Dungeon back. If these mags were or are making money, maybe with a higher profit margin than WotC, then it makes business sense to tell Paizo, "Sorry boys, but we are exercising our option and taking these mags back. Go ahead and finish what you've got scheduled and then we take over."  From here, they use these publications or merge them into one and market their new products, even the online ones, using a profit center like magazines. Please re-read this excerpts (sp?) from Bill S.
Bill Slavicsek wrote:This ending isn't an execution—it's an evolution. Now comes the next era. We have a plan.

Yesterday was sad, but it was exciting, too. It's exciting because I know something that you don't know as yet. I know what happens next. And I can't wait to share that with you, in all its glory. But I can't do that today. There are business reasons, of course, and also practical reasons (to be frank, we're still finalizing some of the details). And there's also the fact that DRAGON Magazine and DUNGEON Magazine still have issues coming out from Paizo, and they deserve to have your undivided attention until the torch is officially passed back to us after issues #359 and #150.

I'm proud of <<yada, yada, yada>>, and eventually the Director of all creative endeavors related to D&D.

My team here at Wizards includes many talented and dedicated gamers, including a number of people who started out working on DRAGON Magazine and DUNGEON Magazine. They helped shape and sustain the magazines over the years, and they have tons of creative talent and passion for the game. And all of them are involved in what comes next.

What follows is how this announcement impacted them, and some of the memories it stirred up.

Thanks for listening, and keep on playing!

—Bill Slavicsek, R&D Director for <<yada, yada, yada>>, former Editor-in-Chief of DRAGON Magazine and DUNGEON Magazine;

"custodian of the legend" 8O  :roll:  (a little impressed with ourselves, aren't we 8) )


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Post Posted: Sat Apr 21, 2007 8:22 pm 
 

Good Bye Corporate Dogshit!!!!!!!!!

 I would just like to have my urination on Paizo and WOTC on file. I agree Dragon Magazine and more recently Dungeon Magazine died on me many many issues ago. Those hacks have successfully turned an iconic equilavent of a finely tuned gourmet snack into a low quality stale fast food hamburger.

 My local gaming store has several boxes of back issues of recent Dragon Magazines sitting out for clearance @ 1.00$ each, they dont even sale. Why the hell did WOTC have to buy out TSR...Sacrilage


I cite the the first steps of what I hope will be a colossal failure of these 2 companies and all future endeavors as:

 - A total betrayal / ignorance / appreciation of the classic/roots/history/ and origin of the game

 - Greed..Greed...Greed..Greed

 - Lack of imagination

 - 3rd edition idolization, blind glorification with lockstep obediance and salacious obsession with the average 12 year olds "pokemon" allocation of allowance funds

 - Same goes for the proliferation and shameless promotion and concentration on silly plastic miniatures and self promotion of their own inferior products

  - Piles and Piles and Piles of Dogshit releases that are overpriced and unoriginal...I really get tired of reading throught 2 pages of statistics/feats/abilities/levels/modifiers for every encounter ( can you say page filler) sheesh sometimes an encounter with goblins is just that. Not to mention the cartoony dumbed down artwork for the average 12 year old, so it doesnt scare the mommies.



 Hip Hip Hooray!!!!! Piss on You WOTC and Paizo... now you can get back to what you were meant to do with your collective talent and profit projection analysists: Design a new series of Pokemon cards... or maybe some more goofy plastic toys for kids.. Maybe Hasbro can do a corporate buyout. You souless, gutless Toads.

  

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Post Posted: Sat Apr 21, 2007 9:55 pm 
 

So, I take, Africa Corps, that you aren't going to buy Return to the Expedition to the Barrier Peaksomon?   :lol:


I would like it a lot more if they would just say:

"We weren't making enough cash."

Or

"We didn't like Paizo stealing our thunder."


I most certainly don't like what they are saying, which is:


"We are such a bunch of geniuses that we think we know better than you."


"But I have watched the dragons come, fire-eyed, across the world."

  
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