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Old 03-18-2015, 01:10 PM   #1
DrNefario
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Tie-in fiction - what are the greats?

Tie-in fiction tends to get a pretty bad reputation. I suspect most of us went through a phase of it, even if we later turned to original work.

What are the most notable works of tie-in fiction? Which ones ought to save its reputation? Which ones are historically significant?

Here's a few examples that I think probably count:

The Dragonlance Chronicles trilogy by Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman (Dungeons & Dragons - Dragonlance) - I'm not sure these stand up too well any more, but I think they were a significant influence on the field at the time. A good few of the current crop of fantasy writers will mention them as an early influence. I think Dragonlance worked better as a set of novels than it did as a D&D setting, and I also feel that the subsequent Dragonlance Legends trilogy about the twins was probably more interesting.

The Icewind Dale trilogy by RA Salvatore (Dungeons & Dragons - Forgotten Realms) - I haven't read these myself, but I've heard of them, and their leading character, who became very popular.

The Thrawn Trilogy by Timothy Zahn (Star Wars) - Again, I haven't read these, and again their influence seems quite large, making the NPR Top 100 SF&F books.

Any other suggestions? Star Trek? Doctor Who? Warhammer? Warcraft? Pathfinder? Something non-SF/F that I can't think of right now?
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Old 03-18-2015, 01:41 PM   #2
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never mind--I misinterpreted the question
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Old 03-18-2015, 03:22 PM   #3
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Is it (if onre use tv lingo) a spin-off like ncis:la is a spin-off, of ncis? Or Anne McCaffrey's dinosaur planet and planet pirate series? Or like Tomb Raider: ten thousand immortals, which follows on from the game.

Tie-in could mean so much. You can have all the Star Trek novels that tie-in with the TV series. The above mentioned Tomb Raider book that tie-in with the computer game. Or McCaffrey's book that tie-in with each other.
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Old 03-18-2015, 03:34 PM   #4
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Since I'm not a gamer, the only way I would encounter these would be as the novels. I can't compare the Dragonlance novels to the D&D games because I've never done D&D.

I have enjoyed some Star Trek, Star Wars (Lost Tribe of the Sith) and Dr. Who novels -- as well as quite a bit of fan fiction set in those worlds. I don't actively seek out these books, but have enjoyed reading them when they show up.

So, I guess fan fiction might be one way in which many people wind up with tie-in fiction. At one time, I was reading a lot of SimeGen fan fiction (based on the Sime-Gen novels by Jean Lorrah and Jacqueline Lichtenberg).
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Old 03-18-2015, 04:06 PM   #5
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Star Trek is quite good It's even better than Star Wars.
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Old 03-18-2015, 04:36 PM   #6
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I can't remember specific titles right now (my paperbacks are in a box somewhere), but I remember enjoying some of the Battletech tie-in stuff quite a bit way back when.
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Old 03-18-2015, 06:10 PM   #7
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Star Trek is quite good It's even better than Star Wars.
Any particular books or serieses? I'm pretty sure the only ST book I've ever read was the novelisation of Wrath of Khan, which I didn't actually see the movie of until much later.
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Old 03-18-2015, 06:18 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by PandathePanda View Post
Is it (if onre use tv lingo) a spin-off like ncis:la is a spin-off, of ncis? Or Anne McCaffrey's dinosaur planet and planet pirate series? Or like Tomb Raider: ten thousand immortals, which follows on from the game.

Tie-in could mean so much. You can have all the Star Trek novels that tie-in with the TV series. The above mentioned Tomb Raider book that tie-in with the computer game. Or McCaffrey's book that tie-in with each other.
I thought tie-in was the generally-understood term for officially licensed fiction with a setting from some other medium, such as film, TV or gaming?

I don't think I'd count sequels by other hands, or shared worlds that are originally prose, like Thieves' World.
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Old 03-18-2015, 07:46 PM   #9
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The Buffy the Vampire Slayer graphic novels seem to be highly regarded and they're canonical, but I can't vouch for them personally. Do graphic novels qualify?
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Old 03-18-2015, 08:06 PM   #10
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If comics count, then there are the alien vs predator comics. I didn't read them, but they even spawned their own movies.

Most of the tie-ins are made for a very specific audience. But you must make good money with them, since so many of them exist.
Some of the warhammer 40k novels are quite good, if one likes military sf. I think Dan Abnett is the most well-known of their authors.
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Old 03-19-2015, 12:40 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by DrNefario View Post
I thought tie-in was the generally-understood term for officially licensed fiction with a setting from some other medium, such as film, TV or gaming?
Wouldn't that be a cross-over?
Or do you mean within a single franchise, but across media? I.e. a movie character appearing in a comic?
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Old 03-19-2015, 03:32 AM   #12
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A crossover woul be Judgment on Gotham - Judge Dredd vs Batman. A tie-in would be a Judge Dredd novel or a Batman novel.
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Old 03-24-2015, 06:34 AM   #13
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Does this qualify? It's pretty good.

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Old 03-24-2015, 11:13 AM   #14
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Brandon Sanderson has two shorts:
Infinity Blade: Awakening (125 pages)
Infinity Blade: Redemption (150 pages)

I haven't read them because I haven't played the games, but I have enjoyed a number of Brandon's other works.
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Old 03-24-2015, 11:22 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AnemicOak View Post
I can't remember specific titles right now (my paperbacks are in a box somewhere), but I remember enjoying some of the Battletech tie-in stuff quite a bit way back when.
Here is a chart that you can take a look at and start from the beginning there. It's all good.

http://www.thetrekcollective.com/p/t...ing-order.html
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