Fans new to the Dragonlance setting and to the newsgroup typically have a number of questions that go unanswered. This document is intended to bring everyone up to speed on the Dragonlance setting. (You will need to be prepared for some 'spoilers', though, depending on how much—or little—you've read already!)
Table of Contents
Section 1: Questions about the FAQ
1.1 - What is the Dragonlance FAQ?
This file dates back at least as far as 1996 and has been consistently maintained as a repository of Dragonlance lore by the members of the Dragonlance fan community.
A FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) file usually lists common questions that appear in online discussion of that topic, and the answers for which there are a general consensus. If people disagree strongly and/or there is reasonable doubt about an answer, both answers are usually permitted. Usually, a FAQ also lists the written and unwritten "rules" of a group and any specific traditions newcomers should follow or be aware of. Due to the vast number of new users, many FAQs also include some general information about netiquette related to USENET and newsgroups. Any questions about the FAQ itself should go to the maintainer.
The Dragonlance FAQ can be understood to be roughly divided into two major sections. The first part, comprising the majority of the document, answers questions about Dragonlance characters, books, products, and anything else relevant to Dragonlance. The last few sections pertain specifically to the newsgroup alt.fan.dragonlance and other information about Dragonlance on the Internet. You should read through the entire FAQ before posting to:
1.2 - Is the information in the FAQ correct?
The FAQ does not try to be 100% correct in all areas, and leaves room for discussion. In general, most of the information in the FAQ is correct, or at least "correct" in the newsgroup (the general consensus in the newsgroup may set aside TSR literature's answers in favour of other answers).
1.3 - How often is the FAQ updated?
Monthly. An updated version is posted to alt.fan.dragonlance on the 1st of every month. If you feel anything should be changed in the FAQ, altering, removing or adding a question, please email the maintainer.
1.4 - Is the FAQ available on the WWW?
This file is also mirrored on the Dragonlance Nexus at:
1.5 - What has changed since the last version?
v0.70: "Return of the Exile" Version
1.6 - Who is the FAQ maintainer?
Any questions, suggestions, additions, complaints etc, should be forwarded to the above maintainer. All flames will be reported to your ISP and forwarded to dev/null as well. Credit also goes to the previous maintainers, Cassandra Jacobs, Alex Louis, Morten Brattbakk, Styx, and Stig Erik Sandø.
Section 2: Back to the Basics
2.1 - What is Dragonlance?
Dragonlance is a fantasy setting on the world of Krynn with a cult-like following of fans. Dragonlance features the Knights of Solamnia, the Wizards of High Sorcery, and its individual pantheon of gods. Krynn is a planet that, like Earth, is mostly covered in oceans. The two major landmasses of Krynn are Taladas and Ansalon. Taladas lies in the northern hemisphere, and Ansalon in the southern, to the south and west of Taladas. Other landmasses do exist, but most of the action in the Dragonlance setting takes place on Ansalon. (See also questions 6.4 and 6.5.)
Novels, role-playing games, board games, comics, graphic novels, and magazines all feature the Dragonlance world. It is published by Wizards of the Coast and Margaret Weis Productions, and it has the most loyal novel following of all of the campaign settings published by Wizards (including Greyhawk, Forgotten Realms, Ravenloft, Eberron, etc.).
2.2 - How did Dragonlance start?
It all began like this. In the mid-eighties, TSR wanted to create a series of role-playing adventures for their Advanced Dungeons & Dragons game that focused on dragons. Tracy Hickman and Doug Niles each drew up proposals for this series, and Hickman's "Dragonlance" concept was selected. From that point forward, Hickman was the primary person responsible for the world, theme, and design of the original Dragonlance series. But many others served a role, as well.
A designer named Jeff Grubb contributed a pile of notes from his home campaign detailing its pantheon of gods. Hickman incorporated these nearly wholescale.
Fourteen role-playing books in the Dragonlance series were published from 1984 to 1986. (These adventures are known as DL1, DL2, DL3, and so on, with titles like Dragons of Despair, Dragons of Light, and Dragons of Dreams.) They were primarily written by Hickman and Niles.
At the same time, an editor at TSR named Margaret Weis, working in close cooperation with Hickman, began to pen a series of novelizations closely linked in with the adventures. This, the Dragonlance Chronicles trilogy (1984-85), was TSR's first foray into the novel publishing business and proved to be highly successful. The Dragonlance Legends trilogy (1986) by Weis and Hickman immediately followed. These six novels are known as the Holy Six among fans, and enjoy a position of ultimate prestige among all Dragonlance writings.
Since then, many other authors have written novels and gaming products for the Dragonlance series, and Hickman and Weis have sporadically returned to create more writings set in this world.
2.3 - In what order should I read the novels?
It is better NOT to read the novels in strictly chronological order as they occur in Krynn's internal timeline, but rather in the order in which they were originally published. This way you will present yourself with a natural progression of the discovery and evolution of ideas in this fictional world.
While the series numbers well over a hundred books, a certain few are considered the "core" Dragonlance books. If you read these, you will be able to participate in 90% of Dragonlance discussions and read almost any "non-core" book with ease:
Until you have at least read the abovenamed books, be aware that this FAQ contains SPOILERS. Read further at your own risk.
Once these novels are covered, you will find as many suggestions for books to read next as you will find fans. See questions 8.3 and 8.4 for some suggestions.
2.4 - What is the Dragonlance role-playing game and how do I play it?
As well as being a series of novels, Dragonlance is a game which combines strategy, luck, and most importantly, imagination. Each player plays a character on Krynn, except for the Dungeon Master, who represents all the exterior elements of the world. The DM prepares and referees the game.
While there have been a few Dragonlance computer games, the primary form is for paper & pencil. It requires some 3-9 people, paper and pencils, dice, and gamebooks. Different kinds of dice are needed, with 4, 6, 8, 10, 12, and 20 sides. Each player should probably get two of each. These can be purchased at your local hobby store or online (try "beginner's polyhedral dice" in your favorite search engine).
The gamebooks will depend on which edition you wish to try. These are:
2.5 - How do I choose an edition?
Which edition you pick is largely a matter of taste, but it's best for your wallet and your sanity not to switch around much once you've chosen one. Converting material between the editions, while difficult and time-consuming, is possible, especially to the experienced DM.
If there is a particular era in which you wish to game, it would be easiest to use the rules set for which that era was intended. First Edition is the game that the Classic Dragonlance (War of the Lance) campaign was written for. Second Edition saw the Chaos War as well as some alternate Dragonlance settings including Taladas and Sithicus. The Fifth Age, from the Dragon Purge to the War of Souls, was designed for SAGA. The Anvil of Time and the current, post-War of Souls era use Third Edition.
Provided you are willing to use eBay, out-of-print material can be easy and cheap to find, particularly the First Edition which was very popular and enjoyed very large print runs. The Third Edition books tend to be very expensive, but you can get them new and receive continued support (at least, until the next edition comes out).
See also question 8.5 for some highly recommended gaming materials that are generally usable regardless of edition.
2.6 - What do I need to get started with First Edition Dragonlance?
First, the DM will need the core rulebooks:
Players need only the Players Handbook.
If you wish to play the Classic Dragonlance (War of the Lance) campaign, the DM will want to collect the following modules:
Yes, that's a lot of booklets, but it's a long, epic campaign (that's kind of the point of Dragonlance, actually), and you don't need them all at once. They each come pretty cheap on eBay and often you can get a complete set in a single auction.
2.7 - What do I need to get started with Second Edition Dragonlance?
First, the DM will need the core rulebooks:
Players need only the Player's Handbook.
The sourcebook set and some adventures for the Taladas campaign are:
The sourcebook and adventure for the Sithicus campaign is:
The following sources are for gaming during the Chaos War:
2.8 - What do I need to get started with SAGA Dragonlance?
First, the DM (or Narrator) will need the core rule set:
There is no player-only book. Please note that the SAGA game does not require the use of dice, either.
The following sets are for adventures related to Dragons of a New Age and War of Souls:
2.9 - What do I need to get started with Third Edition Dragonlance?
First, the DM will need the core rulebooks:
Players need only the Player's Handbook.
The following book contains the Anvil of Time adventure:
The following is the Age of Mortals series of adventures:
2.10 - What about Dragonlance computer games?
There were several Dragonlance computer games by SSI, but these are long discontinued and probably require emulation to run on your modern system. While there were a handful of arcade style games, the computer games most often discussed are a trilogy of role-playing style games which use Second Edition rules in an engine that is the forerunner of Baldur's Gate:
2.11 - What other products are there?
There are lots of Dragonlance products. There are board games, "Choose-your-own-Adventure" books, comic books, calendars, figurines, bookmarks, computer games, etc. The list goes on and on.
The most complete known Dragonlance Product List can be found at:
2.12 - Where can I buy the products?
Dragonlance products are available at most bookstores, including online giants like Amazon.com.
2.13 - But I want a product that's out of print! Where can I get it?
You can also purchase PDF downloads of some out of print gaming materials at Paizo.com or RPGNow.com. A few are available for free at
Finally, it can't hurt to burn up a little shoe leather and hunt around in local used bookstores and hobby shops.
Section 3: Raistlin Questions
3.1 - Why does everyone talk about Raistlin?
Raistlin is very popular among Dragonlance fans because, as Weis and Hickman wrote in the Legends trilogy, there is a little bit of him in each of us. He is undeniably selfish, cruel, cold, and callous. Yet, he can be as tender and as gentle as a mother. He has a huge capacity for both hate and love.
He has appeared in several Dragonlance novels, as well as a Dragonlance boardgame (Magestones). His fans are as zealous as ever, even after all these years. Raistlin debates are one of the favorites on many different discussion forums.
3.2 - Who created Raistlin?
Margaret Weis, and arguably Terry Philips. During one of the gaming sessions in which the plot for the novels were mapped, Terry played Raistlin. He characterized Raistlin with his own acting, giving Raistlin a whispery voice and a cynical tone. Margaret Weis became enchanted with Raistlin (not Terry Philips!) and it is well known that he is her favorite character.
3.3 - Was Raistlin evil?
As Margaret Weis wrote in the Annotated Chronicles, the "key" is self-knowledge--Raistlin had to come to terms with his inner demons before he could gain power. He had to recognize the evil within himself. It is widely accepted that Raistlin was (and still is) evil. But there is nothing saying that an evil character cannot be admired for good traits he may have within himself as well.
3.4 - Did Raistlin have a daughter?
This question has evolved from the tale which Caramon told in one of the early Tales books. As it stands, we do not know for certain whether Raistlin really had a daughter. He denied it in Dragons of Summer Flame. Some people view this as enough evidence to disprove the tale, but some have pointed out that if the tale is true, he wouldn't have known that he had a daughter anyway - according to the tale, Raistlin had a spell of forgetfulness cast upon him after the ordeal. The short story can be found in the anthology Love and War, as well as The Second Generation. It is widely held that he didn't have a daughter, as the short story is listed as a legend. A legend is defined as an unverified story, and cannot be used as a standard of proof for an argument.
3.5 - Did Raistlin or Fistandantilus win?
Nobody knows for certain, and opinions about this vary, although it is implied in the novels (and a painting titled The Last Spell of Fistandantilus by Keith Parkinson) that Raistlin was the victor. It seems to be a moot point, since the single figure which emerged possessed the combined memories and ambitions of both.
3.6 - Did Raistlin love Crysania?
Judging by Raistlin's actions toward Crysania, it would be a far stretch to call it "love," although, as with any Raistlin topic, not everybody agrees.
3.7 - When did Raistlin really die?
Raistlin really died at the end of Test of the Twins. How he is able to walk mortal lands in Dragons of Summer Flame and Dragons of a Vanished Moon is never satisfactorily explained, but it's safe to say that it was the will of the gods and has to do with Raistlin's singular role in the history of Krynn as Master of Past and Present.
3.8 - I heard there is a song about Raistlin. Any info on this?
Yes. There are two that are known about. The first is titled "Raistlin and the Rose", and is by a Swedish band called Lake of Tears. It is on their "A Crimson Cosmos" album. The second song is called "The Soulforged" by Blind Guardian, on their 2002 release "A Night at the Opera".
3.9 - When will the third Raistlin Chronicles novel come out?
Margaret Weis has stated that she never intended for The Soulforge and Brothers in Arms to fall under a series title such as The Raistlin Chronicles. Such a series title raises the expectation of a third book, which Weis has repeatedly indicated will never be.
Instead, Weis (with Hickman) has embarked upon writing a new trilogy called the Lost Chronicles, which continues the tradition of the Raistlin Chronicles by filling in the gaps in the early history of Raistlin and the other Companions. The third and final book, Dragons of an Hourglass Mage, should round out Raistlin's story nicely.
3.10 - How should "Raistlin" be pronounced?
Harold Johnson came up with the name Raistlin intending it to signify "Wasting Man," as well as Caramon which means "Caring Man." The authors, including Weis, therefore, pronounce it so that Raist rhymes with Waste as intended, but fans may (and do) pronounce it in varying ways. It really isn't a topic worthy of debate.
Section 4: Regarding the Races of Krynn
4.1 - Can draconians reproduce?
Prior to the Chaos war, draconians were unable to reproduce - females draconians did not exist. However, it is rumored that female draconian eggs have been discovered, and that female draconians now exist. Draconians have recently set up their own city, recently, called Teyr. For more details, see the novels The Doom Brigade and Draconian Measures.
4.2 - What are the types of draconians?
Baaz: Baaz are created from brass dragon eggs, are by far the most common, and are used commonly as ground troops and foot soldiers in the dragonarmies. They have wings, but cannot fly, although they may glide for short distances.
Kapak: These draconians are created from copper dragon eggs. Kapaks served in the dragonarmies as skirmishers and assassins, mainly due to their poisonous saliva which they smear on their weapons.
Bozak: These draconians are created from bronze dragon eggs. Bozaks are skilled in magic and stay out of combat, using their inherent spellcasting ability.
Sivak: Sivaks are the largest and sturdiest draconians, and are created from silver dragon eggs. The sivaks were elite forcesrces of the dragonarmies. Most distressing is the sivak's ability to shapechange into any humanoid they kill. This ability made them excellent spies. Unlike the lesser draconians, sivaks have strong wings and are able to fly.
Aurak: Auraks are the most powerful and most uncommon of the draconians. They are created from gold dragon eggs. Auraks served as Takhisis' special agents and remained a secret from the Whitestone's forces for a long time. Auraks have no wings and are naturally unable to fly.
4.3 - Who are the dragonlords, and which of them are still around?
In the Dragon Purge early in the Fifth Age, most of Ansalon was carved into realms ruled over or protected by especially powerful dragons. A few of these dragons traveled to Krynn from another world. For more comprehensive information you'll want to refer to printed products, expecially the Fifth Age Box. Here is a quick list of them, with the book listed being the one in which they met their final fate.
4.4 - Is a dark elf a drow?
In other D&D campaign settings, there are dark-skinned, white-haired, underground elves called "drow." This is a race of evil elves, who are hurt by the sun. Drow are not native to Krynn, although there are a few old Dragonlance role-playing adventure games that have featured drow who came to Krynn through various means. Most fans have regarded these adventures as non-canon.
In Dragonlance, the word drow is generally avoided--your typical D&D drow are not a race on Krynn. If it is used, it refers strictly to a dark elf of the Krynnish variety as explained in question 4.5 below.
There is an obscure race of dark elves called the Mahkwahb, who are corrupt Dargonesti. They are a unique sort of underwater reverse drow (albino skin and dark hair). They are featured in the gaming supplement Otherlands and in the novel Alien Sea.
4.5 - Is a dark elf an evil elf?
No. In Ansalon, "dark elf" is a term used for elves who are outcasts from the elven societies of Qualinesti or Silvanesti. Many of them are evil, since being/practicing evil is a crime punished with exile (Dalamar being the most obvious example). Good elves may also be outcasts, since both elven societies (especially Silvanesti) are very conservative and exile elves for a number of reasons. Examples of good dark elves are Porthios and Alhana Starbreeze.
4.6 - How are Kender, Gnomes and Dwarves related?
This has been a controversial issue in the past, but current continuity trends tend to support the original canon. Namely:
The only alternative theory which still seems to have any support among fans is the idea that kender are derived from elves warped by the Graygem. This is supported by the fact that Balif is described as both a Silvanesti Elf General and the founder of the kender nation of Balifor. This is a major motif in the writings of Paul Thompson and Tonya Cook.
4.7 - What are Scions?
The scions are a race that sprang from the same origins as the gnomes, dwarves, and kender. Whereas those three races are unable to use magic due to the influence of the Graygem, the scions were influenced in an opposite way, making them extremely mighty in magic, so much so that they are immortal and possibly incorporeal. There are thirteen of them, and they pop up in tales from time to time as sort of semi-divine aid or foes.
4.8 - Which races don't exist on Krynn?
There are several races common to other worlds, worlds connected to the D&D rules system, which do not exist on Krynn (or at least are not native to Krynn.). While some of them have appeared in stories or game material, these appearances are generally considered mistakes, or that the creatures are visitors from another world. A list of creatures that do not exist on Krynn includes (but is not limited to) drow (of the dark-skinned breed), gem dragons, orcs, halflings, and lycanthropes.
Section 5: Questions about Gods and People
5.1 - How are Astinus and Gilean connected?
This has been a prevalent topic of debate. Everyone agrees that Gilean and Astinus are certainly connected, but nobody knows exactly how. Most people are content to simply equate the two, as is strongly suggested in the original material as well as Dragons of Summer Flame. The "revelation" in The Traveling Players of Gilean is not given much credence.
5.2 - Are Fizban and Paladine connected?
Most people are content with the official explanation of Fizban and Paladine being one and the same (or Fizban being Paladine's avatar).
5.3 - What is an avatar?
An avatar is a physical manifestation of a god. The word carries a lot of connotations from frequent use in the Forgotten Realms series, and therefore we tend to avoid it in Dragonlance usage, prefering "aspect."
5.4 - Are Zifnab and Fizban the same person?
The simplest (and legal) answer, in Hickman's own words, is always: "Zifnab is NOT Fizban. Zifnab is an entirely different person. Both Zifnab and Fizban, of course, bear no resemblance to Zanfib, who appears in our Starshield books. I hope I have cleared this up."
As to the actual nature of Zifnab within the world of the Death Gate Cycle, Hickman wrote: "Zifnab was actually a Sartan wizard who opposed the council's decision to sunder the world. Zifnab is not a god ... indeed, he is actually a chosen and blessed subject of the dragon- avatars of the Death Gate series."
So why does Zifnab seem, at times, to act just like Fizban? How can he remember Tanis and Raistlin, and why does he nearly call himself Fizban? Hickman: "I like to think that Zifnab is very well read." And so, as far as we know, that is all there is to it: the crazy old wizard was a fan of Dragonlance, as well as, apparently, Tolkien and James Bond. The rest is purely speculation.
5.5 - How are the gods' names pronounced?
However you want--again, it's not a matter of debate--but author Jeff Grubb, who came up with these gods for his original campaign, posted to alt.fan.dragonlance the following as how they were originally intended. (All Caps are stressed.)
5.6 - Is Lord Soth in Dragonlance or in Ravenloft?
Knight of the Black Rose was published years ago, a Ravenloft book that detailed the death knight's travel from Krynn to Ravenloft through the Mists. Soth got stuck in Ravenloft, and became a Darklord of a realm there called Sithicus. The book took place right after the events of the Legends trilogy. (See also question 7.2.)
Unfortunately, many Dragonlance fans cried foul--they felt betrayed that the Ravenloft campaign setting would steal one of their favorite characters. Adding to the confusion, Soth creators Weis and Hickman maintained that the Soth in Ravenloft was not the real Lord Loren Soth. Weis and Hickman then had Soth appear in a Dragonlance novel, Dragons of Summer Flame, and many Ravenloft fans objected to this.
Finally, James Lowder (author of Knight of the Black Rose), along with Voronica Whitney-Robinson, wrote Spectre of the Black Rose. Spectre details Soth's recent adventures in Ravenloft, and his eventual escape. The conclusion shocked many Ravenloft fans; Darklords aren't supposed to be able to escape Ravenloft. Yet, Soth did, and Spectre made it possible for Soth to have made his appearance in Dragons of Summer Flame without causing any issues of continuity.
So, according to TSR official material, Soth left Krynn around 356 AC, and then returned in 383 AC (date of Dragons of Summer Flame).
5.7 - Who helped Gilthanas and Silvara discover the Draconians in Sanction, in the Chronicles?
Most references lead us to believe it was the Shadowpeople, one of the 'lost races' of Krynn.
5.8 - What happened to Gilthanas and Silvara after the events in Chronicles?
A novel entitled The Odyssey of Gilthanas picks up the tale of Gilthanas's wanderings. They also feature as minor roles in Day of the Tempest and Eve of the Malestrom by Jean Rabe, and in the corresponding game products Heroes of Defiance and Heroes of Sorcery. Their ultimate fate is a matter left to gaming in the Age of Mortals series of adventures.
5.9 - Who were Steel Brightblade's parents? When was he conceived?
Sturm Brightblade and Kitiara Uth-Matar are father and mother to Steel Brightblade. His story can be found in the novella "Kitiara's Son," one of the five short stories in The Second Generation, an anthology about the children of the Heroes of the Lance. It is assumed that his conception would have occurred during the somewhat odd story told in Darkness and Light.
5.10 - How come Verminaard is alive in Stormblade when he dies in Dragons of Autumn Twilight?
Matthew L. Martin explains: In Chronicles, Verminaard dies at Pax Tharkas. However, in the original AD&D adventures that tell the story of the War of the Lance, Verminaard survives Pax Tharkas and makes it all the way to menace the heroes in Thorbardin, and perhaps even survives that (by virtue of the 'obscure death' clause). Stormblade was the first novel after Chronicles to take place 'within' that time frame, and Nancy Varian Berberick decided to go with Verminaard surviving the escape of the refugees a la Dragons of Flame as opposed to having him killed off as happened in Dragons of Autumn Twilight.
The novel Dragons of the Dwarven Depths comes up with a satisfactory in-world explanation of how Verminaard is able to appear after his death in Pax Tharkas.
Section 6: The World of Krynn
6.1 - Tell me about the Towers of High Sorcery.
The centers for the schooling of magical arts. There were originally five, but four have been destroyed throughout the Ages--the wizards destroyed two of the towers after the Kingpriest had incited mobs to attack them, fearing that the crowds of angry people would stumble upon powerful artifacts. The Tower of Istar was destroyed in the Cataclysm. And a mysterious figure destroyed the Tower of Palanthas shortly after the Second Cataclysm.
Each tower is/was surrounded by an enchanted garden or grove of trees to protect the tower from unwanted visitors. The Tower of Wayreth uses a transdimensional field that allows it to appear anywhere withing a 500 mile radius of Wayreth forest, the Tower at Palanthas is protected by a fear spell, Daltigoth's Tower casts a sleep spell, the Tower at Istar caused intruders to forget, and the Tower in the Ruins created intense feelings of passion.
Of the three towers destroyed in the Cataclysm, The Ruins is the only one left partially standing... barely. It is located in Goodlund, several miles outside of Kendermore, and is abandoned. (Some sources claim it is located not outside Kendermore, but on Karthay.) Rumor has it that the grove of trees standing outside of this tower still retains the power to invoke passion.
The Tower of Palanthas and the Tower of Istar have recently reappeared as the Tower of Nightlund and the Tower of the Blood Sea, respectively. Currently, the Black Robes control the Tower of the Blood Sea, the Red Robes control the Tower of Wayreth, and the White Robes are fighting the undead for control of the Tower of Nightlund.
6.2 - Can women become Knights of Solamnia?
According to Astinus (page 86 in Dragons of Spring Dawning), a noblewoman was a Knight of Solamnia during the Third Dragon War and she rose to the rank of a Knight of the Sword.
Several women are also described as Knights in the "Heroes of Steel" Fifth Age boxed-set (a primary example being Linsha Majere).
6.3 - What is Taladas?
A continent in the northern hemisphere of Krynn, detailed perfectly in the first Dragonlance boxed-set, Time of the Dragon. Taladas has a very different "feel" than Ansalon, but the out-of-print boxed set has gained a cult following, within the cult following of Dragonlance, because of its many outstanding qualities.
Several different role-playing adventure games were set in Taladas, but not many--the sales of the adventures weren't spectacular. Some fans believe this is because Taladas didn't receive any air-time in the novels until recently.
6.4 - What are Chorane, Watermere, Selasia, and Little Taladas?
These are landmasses that were featured in the "Otherlands" gaming accessory.
Chorane: Chorane is obscurely labeled on the "Tales of the Lance" map - at the very bottom of the map, it says "to the Chorane: the Land of Amesh." Chorane is a small, underground land that is beneath the Icewall Glacier.
Watermere: Watermere is a section of land beneath the sea, near Taladas. It is inhabited by Dargonesti and several other races, including evil ones.
Selasia: Selasia is briefly mentioned in "The Black Wing." It is a series of islands with outlandish creatures on it, such as the kender-like Bolandi.
Little Taladas: Little Taladas is simply a small island that is near Taladas.
6.5 - What is Ithin'carthia?
Ithin'carthia is the "Isle of the Brutes" first mentioned in Dragons of Summer Flame. It is dealt with extensively in the novel Return of the Exile. Rather than just an island, it actually seems to be a continent, the third true continent of Krynn (after Ansalon and Taladas.)
6.6 - What was the Chaos War?
In Dragons of Summer Flame, the Irda broke open the Graygem. Unbeknownst to them, the graygem was a prison to an angry Chaos god, who called himself the Father of All and Nothing. The other gods of Krynn recognized him as their creator, and Reorx admitted that he had accidentally trapped Chaos in the gem when he forged it.
Chaos was furious with his children, and he vowed to destroy their "pretty toy"--Krynn. He created demons and wights out of nothing, horrors that would torture the inhabitants of Krynn. He formed fire dragons out of lava, and he waged war on all of Krynn. Eventually, though, a way to defeat him was discovered, and Chaos failed, thus ending the Chaos War.
6.7 - What was the Second Cataclysm?
The Second Cataclysm is understood to be the event at the end of the Chaos War that ushered in the Fifth Age. At that point, the three moons disappeared from the sky and were replaced by another moon-- magic as it had been practiced was no more; the constellations were completely changed and clerical spells were no more; and soon after this giant wyrms appeared and initiated the ravaging Dragon Purge. An explanation for these changes was finally revealed in the War of Souls series.
6.8 - What is the Fifth Age? What is the Age of Mortals?
There are two answers to these questions. In-world, the terms are synonymous. The Age of Mortals IS the Fifth Age. The Fourth Age, the Age of Despair, began with the Cataclysm and ended in the Second Cataclysm at the end of the Chaos War. The Fifth Age, therefore, encompasses everything that has transpired since then.
In terms of branding and casual discussion, the two terms are sometimes used to differentiate two periods, where the Fifth Age refers to the early part including the Dragon Purge and the War of Souls (the time setting for the SAGA game system), and the Age of Mortals is the latter part, starting after the War of Souls and continuing through current products such as Dark Disciple (the time setting for the Third Edition Dragonlance line).
Since the affect of the War of Souls is so major, some fans even stubbornly refer to the current post-War of Souls era as a "Sixth Age," despite the fact that official products try to downplay such a division.
6.9 - What novels are currently advancing the timeline?
The following are the most recent trilogies to advance the timeline. There are also some stand-alone novels printed under the Age of Mortals and Champions series, and tales compendiums, but these are the major ones:
Section 7: The 'Other Worlds' of Dragonlance
7.1 - I saw books in a Dragonlance Product List that weren't published with the Dragonlance setting. What's up with that?
TSR has published a number of campaign settings, Dragonlance among them. Over the years, TSR started to think of the campaign settings as connected - a character from Dragonlance could somehow travel to another campaign setting. A whole multiverse was constructed, in which there were different levels of planes of existence, including heaven and hell. Basically, on one plane of existence was Dragonlance, and on another plane was a different campaign setting. Someone could travel to that other campaign setting through magic.
In different books, the connections between the different campaign settings were explored, and some characters even traveled back and forth between the settings. The books and products where Dragonlance characters have gone to other campaign settings, such as in Lord Soth, or where the connections to the Dragonlance plane is explored, such as in Planescape, are included in the product list.
The connection of Dragonlance to these other settings is highly controversial among Dragonlance fans. Most now agree that it is a matter of your point of view. If you are running a Dragonlance game (or writing a Dragonlance book), then the connections to the other settings are non-canon. If you are running a Ravenloft or Planescape or Spelljammer campaign, then there is nothing wrong with using Krynn and/or its deities/races/whatever as part of it however you please.
7.2 - What is Ravenloft and what is its relation to Dragonlance?
The Demiplane of Dread (the setting for the Ravenloft brand) is a sort of pocket in the planes--it is a plane of existence where the damned go. There is a realm there named Sithicus inhabited mainly by Silvanesti elves, but there are also vampiric kender there and a tribe of humans called the Wanderers. This realm is famous for having been ruled for a time by Lord Soth (see question 5.6).
There are a couple of other realms ruled over by characters supposedly from Krynn, but they are not characters otherwise mentioned in Dragonlance products, nor are their realms particularly Dragonlance in theme the way Sithicus is.
7.3 - What is Planescape and what is its relation to Dragonlance?
Planescape is a campaign setting that details all the different planes of existence that comprise D&D's multiverse. Krynn, the world of Dragonlance, has been mentioned in Planescape products. Krynn is basically viewed as a backwater world by the Planescape folk. Not many people on Krynn travel the planes, though it is through Planescape that the wandering Kender have infected other D&D worlds. Krynn's gods theoretically inhabit the Planes, though they seem to be pretty focused on Krynn (except for Paladine and Takhisis, who are also known as Bahamut and Tiamat in the multiverse). See also question 8.8.
7.4 - What is Spelljammer and what is its relation to Dragonlance?
Spelljammer is a sort of fantasy space-ship setting. According to Spelljammer, there are different individual universes in the giant multiverse. These individual universes are in crystal spheres, and the spheres are in a beautiful rainbow river called the Phlogiston.
Krynnspace is the name of the Dragonlance crystal sphere. To travel amongst the spheres, and to travel from planet to planet in the spheres, you need a spelljammer, or flying magical space ship. Usually, the ships are in the shape of nautical vessels, although variations among the different space-faring races do occur.
Despite the bizarre nature of Spelljammer, this is actually the most credible connection to Dragonlance, and most pervasive in its effect back upon Krynn. The first Spelljammer novel was set on Krynn, and among its revelations was the fact that Krynn's Tinker Gnomes were active travelers among the stars. Another starfaring race, the mind flayers of Greyhawk and Forgotten Realms, at some point arrived on Taladas and became the Yaggol. Finally, the War of Souls books seem to imply a cosmology reminiscent of that presented in Spelljammer.
7.5 - What is Forgotten Realms and what is its relation to Dragonlance?
According to Dragonlance Adventures (1987), characters who get too powerful are sent to other worlds by the gods. Evil archenemy NPCs like Ariakas and Raistlin were exempt from this rule, supposedly due to the favoritism of Takhisis. The gist of this rule was that very high-level PCs were considered inappropriate for Krynn, which is supposed to be about ordinary people doing extraordinary things.
When the first "Gray Box" Forgotten Realms Campaign Set came out later in 1987, it conveniently claimed that this new world was the place where the gods of Krynn send Krynnish mages when they get too powerful. This works out well for Forgotten Realms, which seems to be a setting about extraordinary people doing extraordinary things.
Section 8: Dragonlance Products
8.1 - Is there a complete list of Dragonlance products?
Wizards of the Coast used to maintain such a list, but they have long ago let it become outdated. The most complete known Product List is maintained by the the fans and can be found at:
The Whitestone Council also keeps a list which is more informative, if also more selective, at:
8.2 - Where is the story of what happened to the Companions at Icewall?
In Dragons of Winter Night, a poem by Michael Williams at the start of Book 2 briefly describes a journey by some of the Companions to Icewall. The story is elaborated upon in a tale called "Finding the Faith" by Mary Kirchoff, included in the anthology The Magic of Krynn, which tells the story from the Ice Folk's cleric Raggart's view. Much later, Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman also wrote their version of the tale in Dragons of the Highlord Skies (coming in 2007).
8.3 - What novels bridge the gap between Summer Flame and Fallen Sun?
There are several novels set in this time period, the Fifth Age proper. Jean Rabe's trilogy, Dragons of a New Age, is the most infamous of these, and has long been a topic of raging debates. Suffice it to say here that Fifth Age defenders and detractors alike have serious issues with that trilogy. We do tend to agree on enjoying the following:
The Fifth Age Comic Book is a good, quick introduction to the Fifth Age. An electronic copy of this book is freely available online at:
8.4 - Which other non-core novels are worth reading?
Given that there are well over 120 novels involving the Dragonlance world and characters, no two fans will agree on the good and bad of any one book. The books with the most passionate haters will tend to also have passionate adorers. Given that there is an overall lack of consensus, most fans will agree that the following are must-reads (c.f. question 2.3):
8.5 - Which other game products are worth reading?
Aside from the basics listed in sections 2.6 through 2.9, the following come highly recommended, to novel readers as well as gamers of any edition:
8.6 - When will there be another Kang's Regiment novel?
Don Perrin isn't writing for Dragonlance anymore, and Weis has no intention of continuing the series, so we won't see any more stories about them unless/until she allows another author to write them.
8.7 - Have some books been published with different cover art?
Yes. See the Product List for more complete information. Chronicles has seen at least ten different major editions in the U.S. alone, and Legends is not far behind. These also originally had different covers in the U.K. The only book with major differences between editions is The Second Generation. All older printings with Elmore covers, both hardcover and paperback, contain an appendix with history and gaming material on the Knights of Takhisis which is culled from current printings (Stawicki covers).
8.8 - Will there be a Dragonlance movie?
Yes. In 2006, it was announced that an animated version of Dragons of Autumn Twilight was being produced. Since this is a whole 'nother can of worms, a separate FAQ was long ago created to serve this topic which can be found at http://www.dragonlance-movie.com/moviefaq/.
8.9 - I heard about a Dragonlance book series called The Lost Gods. What is that and why can't I find it?
There is a Forgotten Realms novel, #15 in the Harpers series, called Finder's Bane, and a Dragonlance novel, #2 in the Lost Legends series called Fistandantilus Reborn. These two have nothing to do with each other. A novel called Tymora's Luck was later written for Planescape--a setting which tried to tie all TSR settings together--which was essentially a sequel to Finder's Bane but also incorporated the kender character from Fistandantilus Reborn and a few other tenuous Dragonlance links. It was therefore marketed as #3 in The Lost Gods trilogy, retroactively including the two earlier books in its series (and encouraging readers to read TSR books from other settings). According to author Jeff Grubb, Tymora's Luck was moved back to the Forgotten Realms logo when Planescape otherwise seemed to fare poorly as a novel line.
8.10 - What is Legends of the Lance? What is the Tobril?
Legends of the Lance was a free newsletter which lasted for five issues, sent out from 1998 through 1999. A few more issues were also "published" as a web page on the Wizards of the Coast website. At this time Wizards also began to offer the five print issues as free PDFs on their site. As time passed and the Wizards site was redesigned many times, this archive has disappeared. We have requested several times that they return this archive, with no luck. Therefore, since Wizards freely disseminated the five issues, we are offering a mirror of the first five issues here (warning--LARGE files):
Margaret Weis Productions has claimed that they will resume publishing this magazine electronically, but so far this effort has yet to surface. For a while, there was a fine fan production called The Tobril http://www.tobrilmagazine.com/ which filled this gap, but this, too, has now been discontinued.
8.11 - What new books are coming out?
(This section of the FAQ is not mirrored on the Nexus. See the up-to-date list at the website of Craig J. Ries at: http://dl.silvanthalas.com/. Alternately, see the Nexus's own new and unreleased product page.)
Section 9: Joining the Newsgroup
9.1 - What is alt.fan.dragonlance?
A newsgroup (discussion group on Usenet) that tries very hard to focus on Dragonlance discussion. It is referred to as AFDL for short.
9.2 - How can I join alt.fan.dragonlance?
There are two different types of news servers. One is a web based news server. The most popular of these is Google Groups (formerly Deja News), which both archives posts and allows public posting. The address is: http://groups.google.com/group/alt.fan.dragonlance
The other way is to access Usenet directly. Every good ISP (Internet Service Provider) provides such a server, but you will probably have to call them and wait on hold a good while before you can find out its address. The support pages for your ISP may have the address listed in user support section.
9.3 - What software do I need?
If you are using an Internet based news server, such as Google, you just need to use your web browser. However, if you are using an ISP news server, be it free or otherwise, Thunderbird or Microsoft Outlook are fine. Also, AOL provides this service.
If you are using Thunderbird:
The process with Microsoft Outlook Express is almost identical.
9.4 - What is a lurker, a newbie, a dino, and a troll?
A lurker is someone who reads alt.fan.dragonlance, but rarely posts (if at all). It's good netiquette to lurk if you are new to the group, so you can get a feel for the group and learn some basics. It's poor netiqutte to delurk with an inflammatory post (or flame).
A newbie is someone who is new to alt.fan.dragonlance, and posts fairly often. Newbies should read the FAQ before posting. Some do, some don't. There's no reason to flame a newbie if they haven't, but occasionally it happens. Don't sweat it.
A dino is an old regular of alt.fan.dragonlance, who has been on for quite some time. Most have what's considered "attitude", but realize that it is mostly experience from being on the newsgroup for so long. Dinos have been through good times and bad, and have seen virtually every question imaginable. Humour them in their old age.
Trolls are people who post on the newsgroup simply to piss people off. They say stupid, offensive and hurtful things to either the entire group, or to specific posters. This is an unmoderated group, and as such, there is no way to prevent these posts from going up. If you see a post that qualifies as a troll, DO NOT RESPOND!!! Trolls thrive on attention, and giving it to them only encourages them to continue their virulent behaviour. Ignore them, and they will go away.
If a troll continues to post to a newsgroup and the content of the posts bother you, set up a filter. A filter can be designated to block specific words in a subject line, an entire thread, or all posts by a specific author.
Most (if not all) trolls post from either anonymous accounts or through stolen accounts. Trying to email them or report the email address will probably fail. If you have the technical skills, you MAY be able to trace it back to the originating account though.
The same rules apply for junk email postings, or SPAM. Ignore them or filter them, and above all do no reply!
9.5 - Are newbies welcome?
Of course, there's always use for new perspectives. But I recommend that you read and digest this FAQ quite thoroughly, and then lurk for a week before you throw yourself into the fray. That way, you'll have a slight idea of what's going on. When you finally enter the newsgroup, try avoiding heavy use of caps-lock, bad quoting, yelling, bad language, cursing, lousy grammar, so-called roleplaying and the other all-too frequent newbie traits.
Remember: AFDL has been around for quite some time; we have discussed a lot. Some newbies have barged right in and claimed that they knew everything, that people should feel free to e-mail them if they have questions. This just displays arrogance, as well as ignorance. Other people have claimed that they knew what the real color of Raistlin's staff, because they were Raistlin. This, as one afdler put, displays delusions of grandeur.
Also remember that people are posting from all over the world and English isn't always a poster's first language. Don't criticize someone for poor spelling or sentence structure. It's considered bad taste.
Just get familiar with the group before you actually post. And don't get intimidated if an afdler is mean to you--some people get kicks out of saying stupid and unfriendly things. Don't reply to people like that.
9.6 - What is a newbie to do when he/she enters the newsgroup?
Some people appreciate that you introduce yourself. No extensive information is needed; just the basics. Let us know who you are and what we can expect from you. We'll also need your full name, home address, phone number, social security number, and all of your credit card accounts.
9.7 - Are there any rules to follow in the newsgroup?
Some unwritten rules apply, but they should be looked at more as guidelines for ensuring a great forum for Dragonlance discussion than as strict rules (this is the general consensus of the newsgroup):
9.8 - What is quoting and how do I do it?
Quoting is the inclusion of some of the article you are replying to, so others know what the heck you're talking about. Your answer, 99% of the time, should come _after_ the part you quote, so people can read what you are replying to and then see your answer. Always remember to quote only what is necessary to understand your answer. Never quote the signature (unless the signature is what you're commenting on). Never quote a whole article just to reply in monosyllables. Instead, snip most of the article.
9.9 - Why do so-called "fans" complain about Dragonlance?
In the eyes of a newbie, it may seem that we're a bunch of "cranky whiners" when it comes to Dragonlance. Many critique new and old products/novels/authors, often negatively. This should not chase new posters away. It is out of our love for the Dragonlance world that we disassemble, analyze, bitch, moan, complain, and piss on it. To quote the ex-FAQ-maintainer, Stig:
"We are a community of individuals, and we all share an interest in Dragonlance. We might not like all parts of Dragonlance, nor do we need to like all parts of Dragonlance."
...and to paraphrase Eric Keyser (a former regular on alt.fan.dragonlance), without criticism, things go stale.
Blindly accepting everything allows the mind to stagnate. We prefer to whine if we have to, but we always do it in an effort to further our understanding of Dragonlance, not demean it.
9.10 - What are spoilers?
Something extremely necessary. Please pay special attention to this.
A "spoiler" is a post that gives away something important about a novel/gaming accessory. Most discussion forums do not tolerate this. As someone has pointed out, it's akin to walking out of a movie theater and talking about the end of the film while passing by a line of people waiting to see the next showing of the same movie. If you were waiting in that line, you'd be pretty pissed off. In essence, you are "spoiling" the novel/gaming accessory for those people who haven't read it yet.
If you are going make a post that you feel may "spoil" something for the rest of the group, include "[(Title of book) SPOILER]" in the beginning of your header, along with either the title of the item or the subject you're spoiling (i.e. "[War of Souls SPOILER] The Battle at Qualinesti!"). That's called a spoiler warning. This not only shows courtesy and consideration for people who haven't read the item yet, but it allows for people who *have* read the item to discuss it with you (after all, one of the first things you want to do after finishing a book is talk about it, right?).
It's also considered good etiquette to leave several blank spaces in your post before you start typing. This space (called a "spoiler space") is useful for people who may have accidently missed the header of the message and start reading your post.
Also keep in mind that a large number of people who post to and read Dragonlance discussion forums are not from the United States. That means they get their items later than the people who live in the U.S. do. Please give everybody at least six months time, if not more (a year is recommended for monumental or important work like The Eve of the Maelstrom and the "War of Souls" books), to read the items before you stop adding a spoiler warning to your posts about them.
It is assumed that people reading most discussion forums have read the Chronicles and Legends trilogies, as well as the novel Dragons of Summer Flame, so spoiler warnings for those novels are not considered necessary. However, some newbies come to the forums without this basic knowledge, so please keep that in mind before jumping to a conclusion about a 'stupid' question.
Section 10: Controversial topics
10.1 - What's a controversial topic?
A controversial topic is a topic which has caused bad feelings and / or flame wars among the members of the newsgroup. There are many reasons why they've caused such reactions, but the main reason is because someone felt criticized.
10.2 - Why shouldn't I bring up one of these topics?
Many of these topics represent sore spots for people or a darker time for the newsgroup. The regulars avoid these topics as much as possible, since we do like to see discussions that are entertaining and harmonious. Contrary to popular belief, regulars don't enjoy flaming, but sometimes get so fed up with seeing the same topics over and over again, something in their dino-brain snaps and they fly off the wall. For the sake of keeping peace in the newsgroup, don't post about these topics. If you feel the need to find more information about them, either read about them here, search for them on the net (some of them do exist out there), or search through Usenet archives at http://groups.google.com/. If you still can't find the information you're looking for, try emailing a dino that appears to be friendly to you. It helps your case more if you've contributed to the group in some manner.
10.3 - Raistlin is a woman?
This is probably one of the most controversial and not-wanted topics around. It reared its head some time ago, and grew in controversy because newbies would see the topic line, and flip out thinking everyone on the group was insane for thinking such a thing. At the time, it was funny, as most people couldn't believe how infuriated newbies would get over the subject and how they would attempt to disprove the statement, without having read the original theory of the subject. Suffice to say, the entire theory was done as a joke, no one ever did believe that Raistlin was originally a woman. While many people want newbies to know about the theory, it is only to prevent them from asking, not to bring it up again as a discussion. This topic is dead and over, and no one wants to see it resurrected again.
10.4 - Tanis is gay?
Originally written as a partner to the "Raistlin is a woman" theory, this topic didn't garner the same amount of reactions, but it still caused many people to get upset. While the Raistlin theory was grounded in satire, this theory was intended to parody it.
10.5 - Gem dragons on Krynn?
Many people have asked that if Dragonlance is supposed to be so centered around dragons, why aren't there gem dragons in the world. In general, gem dragons don't fit into the original concept of Krynn, so they weren't included. Part of what makes Dragonlance so unique from other worlds is the fact that it is missing certain races. For the majority of these exclusions, there are logical and valid reasons. This is not to say that you can't have gem dragons in *your* concept of Krynn, but be aware that your concept will be vastly different from everyone else's and this topic has caused many tempers to flare up.
10.6 - A Dragonlance movie and who should be in it?
This was long considered the most taboo possible topic. Over the years, there have been countless threads about possible castings of the Heroes and whether the movie should be live action or animated. Eventually, it came to really annoy regulars whenever this tired subject resurfaced.
Now there actually is a Dragonlance movie in the works. It's animated and it's cast. So the moratorium on this subject has been lifted for now, as there actually is a solid basis for fresh and interesting discussion.
10.7 - Only Weis and Hickman novels count?
There have been several people who don't enjoy the other Dragonlance novels and feel the need to state on the forum that only the novels written by Weis and Hickman are valid to the Dragonlance world. While everyone's entitled to their opinion, this newsgroup has many of the other authors in question contributing, and many fans feel that their works are just as worthy as any novel put out by Weis and Hickman. We ask that people refrain from bashing all non-W&H books in general.
10.8 - Posting under the name "Raistlin"?
Contrary to popular belief, you're not being original if you post under this name. We've literally seen hundreds of Raistlins come traipsing through the newsgroup, asking their questions. They usually stay for about a day, then disappear forever, whether this is from embarrassment or being flamed off, we're not sure. It's a bad idea especially if you intend to post regularly, as people won't recognize you from the several other Raistlins that show up. Try to be unique and avoid taking the name of a character. Most people use either their real name, or a name they made up. If you feel the need to use a character's name, try to personalize it at least, so you stand out a bit more. Be aware that some people may ignore you regardless.
10.9 - I want more books on the Heroes of the Lance!
Another controversial subject, since there seems to be a line drawn between those that want more Heroes of the Lance stories, and others who feel they've been overused and should be put to the pasture for retirement. Many regulars of the newsgroup feel the latter about this issue. While we've enjoyed reading about the Heroes, most feel their stories have been told and there's no reason to keep bringing them back again and again. Some of the ealier novels (such as the Preludes and Meetings) bought into the cash cow of the Heroes, and because several of these books were controversial stories, they were not viewed in a favorable light. Please try to keep the Hero of the Lance worship to a minimum.
10.10 - All books after Summer Flame should be discounted? (aka 5th Age sucks!)
The 5th Age is an extremely emotional subject for people. There were some massive changes that took place during Summer Flame and even more that came out in Jean Rabe's Fifth Age novels. Some people don't accept these changes and will argue vehemently against them. Not everyone agrees that the 5th Age was bad, because it moved Krynn forward, when it appeared to be stagnating. This ties into the Heroes of the Lance idea... a new phase of the world with new characters. It's fine if you don't like the 5th Age, but please don't criticize it without some sort of backing. Too many times there have been posters saying the 5th Age sucks and they've never read any of the material. Please try to be informed of something before stating an opinion. It gives you that much more credit.
Section 11: Questions about the Newsgroup
11.1 - What are all these "in-jokes" I keep hearing?
Remember how it was said that a newsgroup is a community? Well members of the community that have been around for awhile have seen several topics and jokes come up, which sometimes have caused quite a commotion and as such, are remembered for quite some time. Occasionally, these jokes pop up from time to time and sometimes can be quite controversial. In-jokes are not meant to exclude newbies from the conversation but are instead a method for which old dinos can rattle up their brains which are beginning to atrophy due to old age. Tread carefully around any of these conversations.
11.2 - What other newsgroups allow Dragonlance discussions?
Alt.fan.dragons has been known to allow them if they're about dragons. Alt.fan.fantasy is for discussion of fantasy in general and might allow a discussion of Dragonlance in relation to other fantasy novels. The AD&D newsgroup, rec.games.frp.dnd, also has Dragonlance discussions occasionally.
11.3 - Can I post my fanfic to the newsgroup?
If it is related to Dragonlance, yes. Be aware of copyright laws and what your rights are when you post it.
11.4 - Can I post binaries to the newsgroup?
Absolutely not. If you want to share some pictures with us, you can post them to alt.binaries and then let us know what header you used so we can find it. It's as simple as that. Some of us are always appreciative of programs/pictures relating to Dragonlance, but it does not belong in alt.fan.dragonlance.
11.5 - Which authors/game designers/TSR employees post to the newsgroup?
Known ones have included Margaret Weis, Tracy Hickman, Don Perrin, Richard A. Knaak, Paul B. Thompson (as Mr. Apol), Steve Miller, Michael Williams, Nancy Varian Berberick, and Jeff Grubb.
Some former regulars of the newsgroup have gone on to become well-known Dragonlance authors in their own right. This includes most significantly Chris Pierson, Jamie Chambers, and Cam Banks.
In 2003, Margaret Weis and Jamie Chambers announced that they would shift their primary attention to their new corporate web boards at http://www.dragonlanceforums.com/ in order to better promote their products. They and other authors still do frequent the mailing list, however, and to a lesser degree, the newsgroup.
People who used to be on this newsgroup but who seem to have left are Lizz Baldwin, James Lowder (of Ravenloft fame), Voronica Whitney- Robinson (also of Ravenloft fame), Sue Weinlein Cook, and Roger E. Moore (as Grey1998). Larry Elmore has posted once.
11.6 - What are these abbreviations that I keep seeing?
Some abbreviations can be figured out by reading earlier in the post or thread they appear in, while others are used so often they have become second nature to the posters. Here is a short list of the most common abbreviations for Dragonlance and related products common to many discussion forums:
LOL = Laughing Out Loud
DL = Dragonlance
W&H = Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman
KoS = Knights of Solamnia
DL1 = Dragons of Despair
DLCS = Dragonlance Campaign Setting
11.7 - What is canon?
In case you haven't noticed by now, Dragonlance has many contradictions in it. For example, in the Legends Trilogy (1986) and other products around this time, the Dwarfgate Wars are said to have taken place at around 100 AC. Some other products later state the date to be 39 AC. Which is right?
Dragonlance fans have tried to make sense of these various continuity errors, and many fans have formed their own set of canon. The American Heritage Dictionary says that canon is "an ecclesiastical law or code of laws established by a church council." Some Dragonlance fans look at a contradiction, and they try to make a logical explanation for the contradiction. If that doesn't work, some fans say that part of the contradictory material is non-canon, or non-existent in Krynn.
Another example is the novel The Soulforge. Earlier, a book called Dark Heart was published that detailed some of Raistlin's childhood. Margaret Weis came along, and wrote The Soulforge, a novel that completely contradicted Dark Heart. Some fans, in an attempt to explain away the contradiction, have said that The Soulforge is "Raistlin propaganda" that was spread around by the Towers of High Sorcery. Others have said that Dark Heart is non-canon, and Soulforge is the "right" version of history.
Either way, canon is very controversial topic among Dragonlance fans. You have to decide for yourself what you consider canon, but remember that your tastes are exactly that... *yours*. Just because you think Dark Heart is more true than Soulforge because it was written first, don't criticize others who believe otherwise. Be open to the fact that others have their own interpretations of what's canon and what's not.
The publishers of Dragonlance have their own idea of canon as well. They have begun using the term "continuity" instead of "canon" in order to avoid confusion. Whereas fans interested in canon tend to enjoy researching older books in order to find the original answer, Official Continuty actually takes the opposite approach in following the most recent published answer.
In our example above, then, Official Continuity currently has the Dwarfgate Wars at 39 AC, but many fans consider the 100 AC date to be canon. Some fans even try to justify both dates! In short, be aware that legitimate differences in opinion exist. Feel free to calmly, rationally state your case, but be willing to accept other answers.
Section 12: Dragonlance on the Internet
12.1 - Did TSR go bankrupt?
In the mid 90s, TSR, the original publisher of Dragonlance material, did go bankrupt. There was a period of time where Dragonlance material wasn't published at all; TSR had gotten itself so deep in debt that it just couldn't continue.
Fortunately, however, "Magic: the Gathering" publisher Wizards of the Coast bought up all of TSR's debt and took the company under its wing. For a while, TSR was a brand under Wizards of the Coast, but now all D&D and Dragonlance products are simply printed under the Wizards logo. Wizards of the Coast is now itself a subsidiary of Hasbro, Inc.
12.2 - What is the official Dragonlance home page?
Wizards of the Coast, which owns Dragonlance and currently publishes the novel line, keeps a page at: http://ww2.wizards.com/Books/Wizards/Default.aspx Unfortunately, you have to sort through Forgotten Realms, Magic, and Eberron content to find any Dragonlance content.
Margaret Weis Productions, which is licensed to produce the Dragonlance Third Edition game line, keeps an official Dragonlance home page at: http://www.dragonlance.com/. This is a somewhat more helpful site.
Another site is the Dragonlance Nexus at http://www.dlnexus.com/. This was a fan project originally spearheaded by Tracy Hickman at a time when Wizards of the Coast held a contest to select an "Official Dragonlance World Site" (the Nexus won). Although the Nexus no longer claims any "official" status since Weis acquired the license, there is no question that the Nexus website far outstrips any single other site in terms of the amount of info that can be found there.
12.3 - Where are the official Wizards of the Coast "world sites"?
The list of official sites can be found at: http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=dnd/arch/owa
12.4 - I want to write a Dragonlance novel. How do I get it published?
Becoming a published author of any kind is a difficult task, to say the least. But it is possible--we have watched our fellow fans become Dragonlance authors over the years. Chris Pierson, Jamie Chambers, and Cam Banks are now major Dragonlance novel and gaming authors. Kevin Kage and John Grubber have been published in Dragonlance anthologies. All are former and/or current members of the alt.fan.dragonlance newsgroup, as well as the mailing list, and we have watched them become Dragonlance authors.
To become published, it is best to start out small--try submitting a short story to Dragon Magazine (a monthly publication by Wizards of the Coast). Get involved with Dragonlance discussions, and become an active member of the fan community. Get your material edited, and edited, and edited all over again, preferably by a fan who is familiar with Dragonlance (to make sure that you don't contradict too much material) and by someone who isn't familiar with Dragonlance (to receive an unbiased opinion).
After that, send in your material to Wizards of the Coast. Don't be surprised or disappointed if you are rejected - publishing company editors are finicky. You must learn to be persistent; edit your material, and then send it in again.
All submissions to Wizards of the Coast must follow the standards as outlined on the Wizards of the Coast web site at: http://ww2.wizards.com/books/Wizards/default.aspx?doc=WriterResources
If you decide to forego the Dragonlance setting and write your own book, then you can ignore the writers guidelines and shop your work around to different publishing companies (but you can't use the Dragonlance setting or the characters in it). For more information, you can contact the copyright office at the Library of Congress, Washington D.C., 20559 or call (202) 707-9100. Form TX is used to register published or unpublished literary works, excluding periodicals and serials. You can also call (202) 707-3000 for more information.
12.5 - Can I play Dragonlance online?
There are different venues for playing Dragonlance online, such as a "play-by-e-mail" (PBEM) or "play-by-post" game, or a MUD or MUSH. Plug the words into your favorite search engine and you should get some hits.
12.6 - Where can I find the Dragonlance mailing list?
The Dragonlance mailing list is hosted by a list server at Wizards and can be accessed at:
The mailing list is a very different environment from the newsgroup. The latter exists on Usenet, a relatively unmoderated wilderness on the Internet. On the other hand, the mailing list has a set of rules that will be enforced by the moderator. While you may find rules stifling, this also ensures that junk email doesn't exist and arguments are usually controlled. Choose whichever community best suits your purpose or personal choice. Some people subscribe to both!
12.7 - Where can I find the Dragonlance web boards?
There is a large forum cooperatively managed by Margaret Weis Productions and the Nexus at: http://www.dragonlanceforums.com/ There is also a smaller forum hosted by Wizards of the Coast at: http://boards1.wizards.com/forumdisplay.php?forumid=287.
This item has been published here with permission from the author(s) and may not be reproduced without permission. This is a fan submission and its contents are completely unofficial. Some characters, places, likenesses and other names may be copyright Wizards of the Coast.