Are the Cluebooks canon?

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ZZGO
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Are the Cluebooks canon?

Post by ZZGO » January 28th, 2017, 12:24 am

Just an idle thought, but I'd be intetested in an official answer to this question from Brian Fargo or inXile:

Are ye olde Cluebooks that were published for BT 1+2 canon, i. e. are the characters and situations and other information therein part of the BT universe and history?
What about the novels?

(I've never held a BT Cluebook or novel in my hands, but back in the day a gaming magazine published a serialized translation of the BT1 cluebook and these days they're available online.)

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Re: Are the Cluebooks canon?

Post by Ether » February 17th, 2017, 4:38 am

My guess would be no.

I suppose part of the question is who owns the rights to the characters in the books?
If they did go the remake route on the Bards Tale series, could they have had Isli wandering Skara Brad for adventurers, or Meric acting like a tough guy in a bar in Tangramayne, or would their use have to be negotiated with by the books publishers and/or authors?

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Drool
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Re: Are the Cluebooks canon?

Post by Drool » February 17th, 2017, 8:44 pm

I pulled up the BT1 cluebook, and the copyright says that Electronic Arts owned it. So, either they retain the rights or inXile got them when they bought the rights to the games.

FWIW, the book also lists the game as being copyright of Interplay, so I would expect EA to still retain the rights.
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Re: Are the Cluebooks canon?

Post by Ether » February 17th, 2017, 11:48 pm

Interesting. I guess they could make some of those characters part of the story, even if it would probably be nothing more than an Easter egg.
Thanks!

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Re: Are the Cluebooks canon?

Post by ZZGO » February 18th, 2017, 1:01 am

Regarding the cluebooks, they are both set prior to the player's playthrough of the respective game. So for the BT1 cluebook this means that Lord Garrick of Hamelon, Isli, Corfid et al have been dead since even before the first game began.

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Nexus
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Re: Are the Cluebooks canon?

Post by Nexus » February 25th, 2017, 7:44 am

Yeah the BT1 cluebook,(spoilers?) they all die in the end right before confronting mangar, I think the thief runs off with the shapes so they cant get to him

So its from the perspective of before you playthrough the game. That said I think the cluebooks for BT2 and I think 3, the outcome is quite the opposite iirc

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Re: Are the Cluebooks canon?

Post by Drool » February 26th, 2017, 8:53 pm

I actually thought the ending to the BT1 cluebook was a neat way to justify your party running through it just like in the book. Perhaps a little cliche now, but back in the day, I thought it was pretty elegant.
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Re: Are the Cluebooks canon?

Post by thebruce » February 27th, 2017, 7:02 am

Many treasure hunter style films and stories follow the same mechanic. First explorer goes missing, one or more adventurers follow their trail to pick up where they left off, to eventually find the first explorer dead-ended (literally) likely missing some key piece of info, then forging on to be first to explore the unknown and/or finish the quest and/or save the day. :)
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Alation
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Re: Are the Cluebooks canon?

Post by Alation » March 1st, 2017, 1:20 am

I have never read the clue books for BT 1 and 2 but I think it would be easy to make the BT 3 clue book canon. Also with BT 4 being set something like 150 years later, they should have no issues with any of the charactors still being alive and messing with the story.

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Re: Are the Cluebooks canon?

Post by ZiN » March 1st, 2017, 5:20 am

Alation wrote:With BT 4 being set something like 150 years later, they should have no issues with any of the charactors still being alive and messing with the story.
I disagree and would like some charactors from BT3 messing with the story: Elves, and especially elven demi-gods (like Cyanis) could be easily alive, as well as dwarves and half-dwarf half-machine beings (Urmech). Archmages and Chronomancers, frozen in stasis (Gelidia), or other more sinister beings (Shade of Sceadu), etc. At least in the Bard's Tale World...

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Re: Are the Cluebooks canon?

Post by rakenan » March 2nd, 2017, 12:36 pm

Alation wrote:I have never read the clue books for BT 1 and 2 but I think it would be easy to make the BT 3 clue book canon. Also with BT 4 being set something like 150 years later, they should have no issues with any of the charactors still being alive and messing with the story.
BT1 cluebook can't really be canon. I mean, it *CAN* be but it would involve some pretty tortured logic. They took the silver shapes from where they found them and gave them to their Rogue, who ran away with them. It is kind of unreasonable to imagine that they would then end up exactly where they were the first time around.

BT2 cluebook is a vision of a possible future, which the narrator then alters using his knowledge of the vision. So while it may or may not be canon, I think it's pretty irrelevant - the vision may or may not have happened, the events shown in the vision certainly did not. I guess in BT4 we may encounter the narrator as a sage or soothsayer or some such, offering us bits of wisdom about how the future may turn out as clues for our progress through the game.

I never read the BT3 cluebook, so no idea.
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Re: Are the Cluebooks canon?

Post by Drool » March 2nd, 2017, 10:53 pm

rakenan wrote:It is kind of unreasonable to imagine that they would then end up exactly where they were the first time around.
Time reversal spell, remember?
I never read the BT3 cluebook, so no idea.
BT3 is pretty standard. It's an IC walkthrough, so probably can't really be canon.
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Re: Are the Cluebooks canon?

Post by rakenan » March 3rd, 2017, 6:35 pm

Drool wrote:
rakenan wrote:It is kind of unreasonable to imagine that they would then end up exactly where they were the first time around.
Time reversal spell, remember?
DOH! Completely forgot that part.

I guess the question is whether the BT1 cluebook/journal exists or not, since it's the only aspect of the events it recounts that might still exist after that spell. No way to know, I guess. We certainly never see them in any of the games or novels.
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Re: Are the Cluebooks canon?

Post by ZZGO » March 19th, 2017, 1:45 am

rakenan wrote:BT1 cluebook can't really be canon. I mean, it *CAN* be but it would involve some pretty tortured logic. They took the silver shapes from where they found them and gave them to their Rogue, who ran away with them. It is kind of unreasonable to imagine that they would then end up exactly where they were the first time around.
That's part of why I asked. I'm sketching out a storyline for an expansion mod for Bard's Tale I that takes the cluebook's story into account, while still keeping all elements of the origial game. The silver shapes are one particularly obvious plot hook to make the players jump through some extra hoops before they can face Mangar. The shapes obviously won't be in their original locations anymore (well the riddle for the third one would stay in place), but perhaps some important information can be gleaned from those places where they were originally found.

If and when the Remastered Bard's Tale Edition by Olde Sküül comes out I hope to get help from some more tech-savvy modders to implement my storyline. My out there pipe dream is to get InXile or Olde Sküül to release it as an official add-on. (Same for BT2 and BT3.)

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Re: Are the Cluebooks canon?

Post by phimseto » April 12th, 2017, 7:57 pm

I just need to chime in and say that you have the best username, OP.

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