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I know that the Spellplague was the Forgotten Realms transition from D&D 3.5e to D&D 4e, and the Sundering was the transition from D&D 4e to D&D 5e, so -

What major events in the Forgotten Realms marked transitions from one edition of D&D to another?

Specific events I imagine might have been transitions (but can't find any evidence of) include Karsus's Folly and the Time of Troubles.

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For 4e 5e changes:… – Othya Aug 11 '14 at 12:32
Thanks, but I'm asking which events were transitions, and which editions they are transitions for. The details of events are easy enough to find. – Miniman Aug 11 '14 at 13:24
up vote 3 down vote accepted

You've found them all.

The Forgotten Realms was first published for AD&D 1st edition. When 2nd edition came out, the change in spells and available classes was explained through the Godswar aka The Time of Troubles.

The introduction of D&D 3e was exceptional in that there was no overarching, global event introduced to explain the rules changes. Karsus's Folly was introduced with 3e as a historical detail that further developed the history of Netheril and explained some changes local to the Anauroch and some new game elements, but it wasn't the same kind of global upheaval—it was more of a retcon slipped in as undisruptively as possible.

The Spellplague (and hundreds of years) explained the shift from D&D 3.x to 4e, and the Sundering did the same for the transition to 5e.

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Thanks! Disappointed that Karsus's Folly wasn't that significant, it's one of my favourite Forgotten Realms bits. – Miniman Aug 11 '14 at 15:07
@Miniman It was fairly significant actually, and was used to explain some changes, but it was a different sort than the huge, world-smashing events of other transitions. I edited the answer a bit to address it directly. :) – SevenSidedDie Aug 11 '14 at 16:17
Thanks again! I'm not really expecting to see a better answer than this, so I'll accept early :) – Miniman Aug 11 '14 at 22:44

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