Dragon and Dungeon will be written exclusively by WotC staff

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http://www.thegamerdome.com/, a blog, has information from the GAMA trade show. One item caught my eye:

Dragon and Dungeon: All content will be produced by R&D (really?), so everything will automatically be what they call “canonized rule content”…it’s all 100% official. That also means everything published will be RPGA legal. This way they can integrate it better with the rules database as well.

I'm hoping that means R&D will playtest and/or screen submissions heavily before "producing" the content. Otherwise it seems a bit silly to have that submissions page and related documents available to the public, although one could take a cynical stance on the matter.
I'm having trouble accepting this. I can't help but believe the blogger has the facts wrong. As I understand it, Dragon has always survived on the contributions of both staffers and freelance contributors. Why change now? Content is already 100% official (at least that's what the covers stated for the last several years). I'm not sure how "RPGA legal" the content is however.

According to the D&D main page, freelance contributions seem to be a part of the equation, because they explicity ask: "Want to write for Dragon or Dungeon magazines? We’re always on the lookout for new writers. Check out our writer’s guidelines and send us your idea.

Before you submit your complete article, use the submission process described here to send us a pitch. We’ll look over your proposal, and if we’re interested, we’ll let you know within 60 days.
"

If this is true however, much of the talent pool for the magazine is evaporated, as into thin air.

Its nice (for me) to finally get confirmation on the price of the D&DI. From the blog: "They confirmed the price point for DDI subscriptions: $14.95 monthly, $12.95 a month if you buy 3 months at a time, or $9.95 a month if you subscribe for a full year. They’re also going to be implementing one-shot usage fees for convention games and occasional in-store events."

Apparently, individual issues can be bought; I hope this to be the one-shot usage fee that's mentioned. $14.95 is a bit high for a single issue; $9.95 is more than enough (less would be nice ;)).
/\ Art
Between this and the "only three books per campaign setting EVER" thing, the blogger in question strikes me as quite misinformed.

When I see confirmation of these "facts" from something/someone more official I'll worry.
WolfStar76 Community Advocate (SVCL) for D&D Organized Play, Avalon Hill, and the DCI/WPN LFR Community Manager DDi Guide

Created by MyFitnessPal - Free Calorie Counter

As I have mentioned in another place, staff only writing means Edward Greenwood would not be published. This strikes me as unlikely.
Plans are always subject to change.
I doubt this is true. If it is then that's excellent news. It virtually assures the continued success of Kobold Quarterly and Pathfinder.
I doubt this is true. If it is then that's excellent news. It virtually assures the continued success of Kobold Quarterly and Pathfinder.

I, too, disbelieve this.

If by some amazing chance it were true, I'm afraid I would very quickly lose interest in the e-zines. Too small a talent pool in WOTC R&D.

By far.
"Reading, after a certain age, diverts the mind too much from its creative pursuits. Any man who reads too much and uses his own brain too little falls into lazy habits of thinking." "The important thing is not to stop questioning." A. Einstein
Since Keith Baker has said he's working on new Eberron content for the e-zines, it's safe to say it's not going to be totally in shop. He's a freelancer, not an employee.
First thing for people working on providing new features should remember: People hate change for the sake of change. They usually don't mind genuine improvements, but change just because it's change and therefore cool tends to get hackles raised. Second thing for people working on providing new 'improved' features should remember: It shouldn't be hard for users to figure out how to turn them off if they don't like them. Just because the programmer thinks he's had a great idea doesn't mean everyone else is going to agree with them.
Cynical.. NO talents in house? really?
Cynical.. NO talents in house? really?

Who said there are no talents in house?
I do not believe any said there was no talent in house, though opinions have been to something like in house talent would provide less of value to the D&D gaming community, due to a smaller talent pool being used.
Plans are always subject to change.
Wasn't there an article on WotC"s page a while back asking for contributions to DDI content? I seem to recall such a thing.
Do you mean this link? The D&D welcome page links to it at the bottom, above the legal info and Site Map, and below Sage Advice.

It currently says, "... we are no longer accepting submissions... that make use of 3.5 mechanics. After 4th Edition releases this June, we will again be reviewing submissions..."
Heyas,

Obviously, no magazine like Dragon or Dungeon could survive without the support of the RPG community. I am gonna check in with the editorial team and try and get a statement of their submission philosophy and post it here.

Thanks!
-Mike
Heyas,

Obviously, no magazine like Dragon or Dungeon could survive without the support of the RPG community. I am gonna check in with the editorial team and try and get a statement of their submission philosophy and post it here.

Thanks!
-Mike

Thanks, Mike . I was a bit shaken by this "news" so this is comforting to hear.

I'm still assuming the blogger had the facts wrong but it will be nice to have confirmation of the submission guidelines, in either case.
/\ Art
That also means everything published will be RPGA legal.

Interesting, because everything that WotC released as a rule supplement is not RPGA legal. So either they're exaggerating or we'll see a 180° change in RPGA policy
Thanks, Mike . I was a bit shaken by this "news" so this is comforting to hear.

I'm still assuming the blogger had the facts wrong but it will be nice to have confirmation of the submission guidelines, in either case.

Here's a quote from ther world famous Chris Youngs himself:

"Regarding our submission policy, the blogger is incorrect. As our first 4th Edition issue will show, we’re still going to be accepting submissions from the community. We’ll have updated submission guidelines up around the time of the launch."

Obviously the entire team is extremly busy making preparations for the 4E launch, but please let me know if you folks have anymore questions and I'll try and corner someone else in the WotC kitchen with a spork and make them spill the beans. =)

-Mike
Interesting, because everything that WotC released as a rule supplement is not RPGA legal. So either they're exaggerating or we'll see a 180° change in RPGA policy

It *has* been said elsewhere (I believe it was at DDXP) that the content of Dungeon and Dragon magazines will go into the Rules Database - thereby making it official.
WolfStar76 Community Advocate (SVCL) for D&D Organized Play, Avalon Hill, and the DCI/WPN LFR Community Manager DDi Guide

Created by MyFitnessPal - Free Calorie Counter

It *has* been said elsewhere (I believe it was at DDXP) that the content of Dungeon and Dragon magazines will go into the Rules Database - thereby making it official.

Isn't everything going in the Rules Database though (including rules from the Eberron books)?
It *has* been said elsewhere (I believe it was at DDXP) that the content of Dungeon and Dragon magazines will go into the Rules Database - thereby making it official.

Which doesn't really matter because much of the official stuff is not RPGA legal.

So I wonder if this hints at a change in RPGA policy and that in the new campaign everything official will be RPGA legal.

At the moment there is a long list of official content from official WotC products which is not RPGA legal (even many core rule stuff from the PHB is still banned in RPGA)
What could be true is that R&D maybe reviewing/developing/balancing any mechanic based ideas.
Which doesn't really matter because much of the official stuff is not RPGA legal.

So I wonder if this hints at a change in RPGA policy and that in the new campaign everything official will be RPGA legal.

At the moment there is a long list of official content from official WotC products which is not RPGA legal (even many core rule stuff from the PHB is still banned in RPGA)

Isn't everything going in the Rules Database though (including rules from the Eberron books)?

Agreed. I wasn't trying to say what will/won't be RPGA-legal, but instead point to what will/won't be "official" and therefore options for the RPGA to consider.
WolfStar76 Community Advocate (SVCL) for D&D Organized Play, Avalon Hill, and the DCI/WPN LFR Community Manager DDi Guide

Created by MyFitnessPal - Free Calorie Counter

. . . and then this morning I found this in my mailbox as part of the LFR mailing list:

All content from Dragon and Dungeon is being generated
through R&D, just like a regular published product.

I think some people don't understand that the relationship between the
magazines and R&D is different than it was before. Under Paizo, Dragon
and Dungeon magazines went through an approval process at Wizards, but
they were in charge of the management and production of the articles.
Now, they are part of R&D; they're essentially finding another way to
deliver more options to you. There's no difference between a Dragon
article with a bunch of new powers and a book you purchase off the shelf
of your game store with new powers in it.

It is our intention to allow Dragon and Dungeon content into the RPGA. I
am going to have monthly reviews of content with the editor-in-chief to
ensure that a given month's content will be OK for RPGA use. I suspect
the vast majority of the content to be usable (maybe not 100%, but
probably 90%+). With regards to adventures (Dungeon content), all will
be sanctionable through the RPGA, although we will be selective with
what adventures will be adapted for a _specific_ campaign.

WolfStar76 Community Advocate (SVCL) for D&D Organized Play, Avalon Hill, and the DCI/WPN LFR Community Manager DDi Guide

Created by MyFitnessPal - Free Calorie Counter

Agreed. I wasn't trying to say what will/won't be RPGA-legal, but instead point to what will/won't be "official" and therefore options for the RPGA to consider.

Actually that's also nothing really new. Paizo's mags were 100% official too (even says this on the cover) and stuff from them has become RPGA legal (the regional feats for Oerth regions for example)
Heyas,

Obviously, no magazine like Dragon or Dungeon could survive without the support of the RPG community. I am gonna check in with the editorial team and try and get a statement of their submission philosophy and post it here.

Thanks!
-Mike

Mike,

Politely saying so, it would have been nice for them to at least sent out form letters/emails for all those prior 3.5 submissions that tons of folks, myself included, sent in when they initially asked for queries months back. It doesn't exactly inspire freelancers to spend the time to come up with ideas to pitch when absolutely no reply is forthcoming (nor any reply to multiple questions over the next three months in the face of that).

I had the opportunity to contribute a nice number of articles in the last year that Dragon and Dungeon were actual magazines, and I'd been looking forward to doing the same with the online version (articles about certain IP can't be done for any 3rd party folks, ie Planescape stuff for instance). I'd even been asked to submit a full version of one 3.5 article that was a leftover from the Paizo slush pile... and then no reply at all after that point.

Communication really needs to improve or else WotC seriously risks a massively shallow writing pool for anything in the online magazines, because a lot of folks will just assume it's a lost cause that's only being done in-house or by the select few already cleared to work on 4e material. It may not mean a gigantic amount to me now, since my day job takes up most of my time (and I've done some freelancing for Paizo to fill what time I'd devote otherwise), but you guys need to do something different or you're not going to get the same interest from non-staff writers, and you'll potentially cripple the introduction of new folks into the writing pool by removing a nice avenue to getting your name out there and getting cool stuff published.

Mind you, if you ever need something on Planescape or its associated topical areas, I'd be keen to know and contribute.
Shemeska the Marauder, Freelancer 5 / Yugoloth 10