Time of the Dragon (1989)

Time of the Dragon (1989) is a jam-packed box set that introduces Taladas, the other continent of Krynn that remains totally untouched by the events of the Dragonlance novels. I see this as an attempt to build a traditional D&D campaign setting (one with custom characters and no rigid meta-story) for Dragonlance that doesn’t have to worry about mucking up the continuity of the novels and such. The obvious downside of that is that you are playing in a region removed from the novels that probably inspired you to run a Dragonlance campaign in the first place.

All that said, this is some premium Zeb Cook work right here. Taladas is WEIRD. There are plenty of recognizable Dragonlance races, but all of them have radically different cultures. A minotaur empire controls most of the continent, for Pete’s sake. Cook makes it all work, though, carefully charting an interconnected web of history and culture that keeps the whole thing plausible, no small feat for a box that contains details on gnomish flamethrowers. The result actually feels more cohesive than Ansalon, the main Dragonlance continent.

Stephen Fabian is on art duty in the book interiors and he’s awesome as always. Ned Dameron (I think; TSR didn’t bother to credit him) does art for many of the card stock character cards. I particularly like his gothy Thenol warriors.

Aside of one sourcebook on minotaurs, maybe two adventures and the SSI computer game Dark Queen of Krynn, that’s basically it for Taladas. Kind of an evolutionary dead end, but a majestic one.

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