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Questions for Richard Baker

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Topic:


Topic author: Alaundo
Subject: Questions for Richard Baker
Posted on: 12 Feb 2004 19:12:25
Message:

Well met

This being a collective scroll of any questions the Scribes and visitors of Candlekeep wish to put to a renowned author of the Realms, namely - Richard Baker, whos works include: Condemnation, The City of Ravens and the upcoming The Last Mythal series.

Present your questions herein and check back to see what news may also come forth from the quill of this author.

Replies:


Reply author: SiriusBlack
Replied on: 16 Feb 2004 14:58:12
Message:

Mr. Baker:

In another thread, there was some discussion about an anthology for the upcoming, Year of Risen Elfkin. Is your Last Mythal series taking place in that year? Additionally, do you know yet if there are any talks about an anthology for this year?

Thanks in advance for taking the time to answer any of those questions.

SB


Reply author: arilyn742
Replied on: 23 Mar 2004 20:16:31
Message:

Mind if I make a stab at this one, as RB doesn't seem to be answering?

I don't know squat about this "Last Mythal" series, and I haven't even read any of Mr. Baker's work, and I'm not really up on FR continuity, but I think the answer would be something like unlikely.

The Year of Risen Elfkin is 3 years after the Year of Wild Magic, and, unless WotC's policy on this has changed, they're moving it forward at a rate of 2 FR years = 5 real world years.

Although these novels might be some kind of exception, for all I know...


Reply author: SiriusBlack
Replied on: 24 Mar 2004 05:52:38
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by arilyn742
The Year of Risen Elfkin is 3 years after the Year of Wild Magic, and, unless WotC's policy on this has changed, they're moving it forward at a rate of 2 FR years = 5 real world years.



We are in the Year of Rogue Dragons, so that's two years. Additionally, I believe I recall some discussion on the WOTC board where it was mentioned that the ratio you referenced wasn't exactly in place or at least being adhered to anymore.

Yet, I think you are right about the series not starting out in that year, although when it concludes, two years from now, who knows?

Ed Greenwood has been raving about Richard Baker's upcoming novel in his thread and gave some cryptic hints that are leading me to believe that Mr. Baker's series won't so much be set in the Year of Risen Elfkin, but the end of the series might set up that year. Nothing solid, Mr. Greenwood's being very mysterious. Go figure.


Reply author: hammer of Moradin
Replied on: 01 Jun 2004 22:51:31
Message:

Some information from one of the book distributors has a brief synopsis. It mentions that the first book centers around an isolated group of elves returning to the mainland. Not much to go on yet. Any hints for us Mr. Baker?


Reply author: SiriusBlack
Replied on: 02 Jun 2004 00:04:35
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by hammer of Moradin

Some information from one of the book distributors has a brief synopsis. It mentions that the first book centers around an isolated group of elves returning to the mainland. Not much to go on yet. Any hints for us Mr. Baker?



He's given some hints in this thread.


Reply author: green knight
Replied on: 18 Jun 2004 22:34:01
Message:

Greetings Mr. Baker I a really enjoyed your adventure Rana Mor from the May/June 2001 dungeon magazine. I am thinking of expanding it and including it in the Realms (probablly in the southern Mhair jungle below Chult). Just wondering if you had any thoughts on things to change or add to it to make it fit the Realms beter. I am going to make the Rangka empire have fallen a longer time ago and make their pantheon a protopantheon that was absorbed or destroyed by the expanding Faerunian pantheon. If anyone else ran the adventure or has any ideas I will start another thread so as not to bog this one down.

Many thanks in advance
Green Knight


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 28 Jul 2004 17:28:52
Message:

Hi, sorry for the long, long delay in answering...

The Mhair jungles work fairly well, I think. You could portray the river journey as a venture from the Lapal Sea (the big lake between the Black Jungles and Mhair Jungles) up one of those tributaries heading into the jungle. As far as the ancient kingdom/realm that built Rana Mor, I think it would be pretty reasonable to posit an ancient Lapal kingdom around that area. (The Lapal tribes were the folks who settled Lapaliiya and that surrounding piece of countryside back in the vicinity of 0 DR.)

You'll need to pick some new deities for the evil clerics in the adventure to worship; off the top of my head, some aspect of Shar might work.

Hope that helps!



quote:
Originally posted by green knight

Greetings Mr. Baker I a really enjoyed your adventure Rana Mor from the May/June 2001 dungeon magazine. I am thinking of expanding it and including it in the Realms (probablly in the southern Mhair jungle below Chult). Just wondering if you had any thoughts on things to change or add to it to make it fit the Realms beter. I am going to make the Rangka empire have fallen a longer time ago and make their pantheon a protopantheon that was absorbed or destroyed by the expanding Faerunian pantheon. If anyone else ran the adventure or has any ideas I will start another thread so as not to bog this one down.

Many thanks in advance
Green Knight


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 28 Jul 2004 17:30:56
Message:

"Forsaken House" begins at the start of 1374 DR, the Year of Lightning Storms.


quote:
Originally posted by arilyn742

Mind if I make a stab at this one, as RB doesn't seem to be answering?

I don't know squat about this "Last Mythal" series, and I haven't even read any of Mr. Baker's work, and I'm not really up on FR continuity, but I think the answer would be something like unlikely.

The Year of Risen Elfkin is 3 years after the Year of Wild Magic, and, unless WotC's policy on this has changed, they're moving it forward at a rate of 2 FR years = 5 real world years.

Although these novels might be some kind of exception, for all I know...


Reply author: Sarelle
Replied on: 28 Jul 2004 20:01:07
Message:

Hello Mr. Baker,

quote:
Try Auppenser for a human god of psionics (alignment neutral, domains Balance, Mentalism, Protection, Strength). He's a dead deity, but he was big back in the days of Jhaamdath, which was a realm heavily influenced by psionics. You guys will get to meet him in an upcoming Realms product.


Can't elaborate on this, can you? Tell us what the mysterious Realms product is? Hints? Could you at least say if this is based on any preexisting Realmslore, and if so which bit?

Thanks.


Reply author: green knight
Replied on: 30 Jul 2004 09:11:32
Message:

Thank you for responding to my questions about Rana Mor. The Serpent Kingdom source book actually really helped me as well since so much of that area is covered in that book. Modifing the adventure is a long term project for me so time is not an issue for me. I'm looking forward to getting The Forsaken House next week.

Green Knight

quote:
Hi, sorry for the long, long delay in answering...


Reply author: SiriusBlack
Replied on: 05 Aug 2004 19:22:45
Message:

Mr. Baker:

Last week, I finished reading The Last Mythal. As I expressed in another thread, I think it is an excellent novel and am very impressed with the level of detail in this novel.

Additionally, with any work that invokes such a response, I also have some questions about some details within the novel.

Spoiler warning

some details about

this novel

are about to

appear

1). The half-elf battle mage Jorildyn who is studying magic on Evermeet... You call him one of Araevin's colleagues at one point in the novel. Am I to correct that he's a candidate to learn high magic like Araevin?

Regardless, I was surprised, delightfully, that a half-elf would be on Evermeet at all and later assume a leadership position within Evermeet forces. Is this a possible shift in some elven attitudes towards half-elves? Or does it speak more of Jorildyn's character or heritage? Will we learn more about his background in future novels within this trilogy?

2). On page 68, you describe Queen Amlaruil as having dark hair. I know past sources like Elves of Evermeet have her with red-gold hair. Any reason for this change? Or are you like myself and prefer your elves with dark hair?

3). Any chance that like the WOTSQ series, we could possibly see some of this trilogy's characters featured in Dragon magazine articles? I know I'd be very interested in seeing such articles and believe others would be as well.

4). Your novel is very wide in scope and has a great level of detail and excitement despite shifting between numerous settings. However, one setting that is not featured or even mentioned, is the new elven kingdom that Prince Lamruil is forging somewhere on Faerun. Will we possibly see this character or nation featured or mentioned in later novels within this series? Or is that not something you plan to address?

Thank you for any time spent in answering these questions. In the thread I linked, I called your work, the most ambitious Realms novel I've ever read. I certainly believe that as it is the only Realms novel that reminds me of George R.R. Martin's work in some ways with the epic feel and detail.

Excellent job...especially for a former Navy officer (I'm sure that will give a hint as to what branch of service I was within).

Take care.

SiriusBlack


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 06 Aug 2004 17:30:32
Message:

Thanks, I'm glad you liked it! Comparison to George Martin is high praise indeed.

Some replies to your questions...

***SPOILER WARNING***




1. Jorildyn isn't a High Magic candidate, I don't think. He's a "few levels back" of Araevin, I figured. The fact that a half-elf is studying magic on Evermeet reflects Jorildyn's unusual competence. There's something unusual about him, but I don't know if I know what it is yet.

2. I found conflicting info on Amlaruil's hair color. I figured she was a moon elf, though, so the "her hair is black" school was more likely right than the "her hair is gold" school.

3. I'd like to write up some of the characters at some point, just don't know when I will have the time. I figure that Seiveril is something along the lines of a 21st-level cleric of Corellon, and Araevin is something like a 15th-level wizard, with a level or two of warmage, fighter, or spellsword thrown in (that's why he wears the mithral shirt without any trouble).

4. This is a tough one, to be honest.As an author, I sort of feel that Lamruil isn't really my character, and it's not for me to tell the story of what he does after "Evermeet." If I do feature him at all in the remaining books of the Last Mythal, it will most likely be a cameo, so that I'll leave it for Elaine to decide what follows for him. It's not a great answer for you readers, but there it is.


quote:
Originally posted by SiriusBlack

Mr. Baker:

Last week, I finished reading The Last Mythal. As I expressed in another thread, I think it is an excellent novel and am very impressed with the level of detail in this novel.

Additionally, with any work that invokes such a response, I also have some questions about some details within the novel.

Spoiler warning

some details about

this novel

are about to

appear

1). The half-elf battle mage Jorildyn who is studying magic on Evermeet... You call him one of Araevin's colleagues at one point in the novel. Am I to correct that he's a candidate to learn high magic like Araevin?

Regardless, I was surprised, delightfully, that a half-elf would be on Evermeet at all and later assume a leadership position within Evermeet forces. Is this a possible shift in some elven attitudes towards half-elves? Or does it speak more of Jorildyn's character or heritage? Will we learn more about his background in future novels within this trilogy?

2). On page 68, you describe Queen Amlaruil as having dark hair. I know past sources like Elves of Evermeet have her with red-gold hair. Any reason for this change? Or are you like myself and prefer your elves with dark hair?

3). Any chance that like the WOTSQ series, we could possibly see some of this trilogy's characters featured in Dragon magazine articles? I know I'd be very interested in seeing such articles and believe others would be as well.

4). Your novel is very wide in scope and has a great level of detail and excitement despite shifting between numerous settings. However, one setting that is not featured or even mentioned, is the new elven kingdom that Prince Lamruil is forging somewhere on Faerun. Will we possibly see this character or nation featured or mentioned in later novels within this series? Or is that not something you plan to address?

Thank you for any time spent in answering these questions. In the thread I linked, I called your work, the most ambitious Realms novel I've ever read. I certainly believe that as it is the only Realms novel that reminds me of George R.R. Martin's work in some ways with the epic feel and detail.

Excellent job...especially for a former Navy officer (I'm sure that will give a hint as to what branch of service I was within).

Take care.

SiriusBlack


Reply author: SiriusBlack
Replied on: 06 Aug 2004 18:10:23
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by RichardBaker
There's something unusual about him, but I don't know if I know what it is yet.



Now that is always interesting to hear from an author. I'll be curious to see what comes of this character and I hope you enjoy the creative process that might end up telling you more about him.

quote:

I'll leave it for Elaine to decide what follows for him. It's not a great answer for you readers, but there it is.



More than fair enough of an answer for me. Thank you for taking the time to answer my questions. Best of luck with the rest of the trilogy.


Reply author: Tamsar
Replied on: 08 Aug 2004 16:37:09
Message:

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Ok finished reading this last night, all i can say is Ed's comment on the back is not hyperbole, brilliant read, already one of my favourite realms books, and i've read them all. Well done Richard!!


Seiveril resurrects Fflar in this book, I've lost my copy of The Fall of Myth Drannor accessory, but didn't Fflar kill Aulmpiter I can't remember? I've got a feeling they both slew each otehr in that fight, very Ecthelion of the Lake vs Gothmog old school Silmarillion style.

Always liked Fflar, even though very little was known about him, Keryvian "Foebane" is one the greatest weapon ever forged, he wades through demons like no bodies business :) Got to admire that heh.

Much like Sirius and the rest of the people who have read this book, i'd love to see profiles of them in a Dragon article (My thoughts on this is that all characters from realmsian Trilogies should be profiled).


Reply author: Bruce Donohue
Replied on: 08 Aug 2004 17:32:28
Message:

Hello Richard,

I would first like to say congratulations on Foresaken House and Ed's comment was very much deserved. I re-read a couple of your books in FR and noticed a few things. With this book, it seems that you challenged yourself much much more. Secondly having free reign to write a story line of your own to which you are the sole creator of the trilogy, this book was much better. You didn't have to play with others toys so to speak, therefore I think that you did a much better job with this book than with Condemnation.

One thing I also noticed was your descriptions of the setting, the mood, the atmosphere, and the details were much more at the forefront. You captured the feeling and ran with it much much better than your previous books. You kept to elements of tension in far greater scope and skill and it showed. The pace didn't seem rushed at all or stifled. The point of view of the various characters was very crisp and well done, and they had a much more believeable depth and feel to them. In the process these characters become much less two dimentional and they are brought life to the page and the story.

As a writer we always hope that our stories evolve and that our skill sets improve with every chance we have to practice and hone our craft, therefore I must congratulate you Richard, job well done for you have hit the vibrant stride that you have been looking for whether it was consciously or unconsciously done. Keep up the good work, much success, and I think that you have now successfully bridged your game writing with novel writing. Sure there will always be little elements of Lore that we FR fans will notice, such as Alaruil's red-golden hair p.14 Elves of Evermeet), and the fact that in Elves of Evermeet Sourcebook 2nd edition, that the Council of Lords doesn't exist but is the Council of Matrons that Amlaruil keeps and does policy with. (Since Zaor's death, Evermeet has grown into a decidely matriarchial society. Amlaruil rules with the advice of her Council of Matrons, a circle of elder females of all subraces. She has many male advisers as well but they have no formal status with her court. p. 15 of Elves of Evermeet)

Congrats again Richard and looking forward to see what will happen in the next instalment and to see what elements of inspiration that you may have taken from the sourcebook done by Steven Schend in Cormanthyr: Empire of Elves and the boxed set of the Fall of Myth Dranno, both of which I think are valuable sources for the next book.

Bruce Donohue :)


Reply author: Prince Forge of Avalon
Replied on: 10 Aug 2004 06:18:13
Message:

Dear Mr Baker,

I havent been to these boards in a while but i had to take the time to thank you for Forgotten House!

LOVED IT!!!!!

The worst part is having to wait for all those months for Vol 2 in the series! Really is was just great, i finised it in a day and a half (that alone says something for me).

Well thank you again, and I'm waiting!!!

PFoA


Reply author: norticus
Replied on: 12 Aug 2004 09:19:16
Message:

hi mr baker

im translating the war of the spider queen series in turkish
ive just finished reading condemnation and have a spesific question about it

in the hardcover version, bottom of page 315, middle of chapter 19
the party is in demonweb and being followed by something
Pharaun offers to cast a spell to bar their passage
but quenthel rejects and says "save your magic. Jeggred, Ryld, carry Valas and Danifae"

wasnt at that time jeggred in minauthkeep, near the empty bodies of the companions?


Reply author: Lord Rad
Replied on: 12 Aug 2004 10:24:37
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by norticus

hi mr baker

im translating the war of the spider queen series in turkish
ive just finished reading condemnation and have a spesific question about it

in the hardcover version, bottom of page 315, middle of chapter 19
the party is in demonweb and being followed by something
Pharaun offers to cast a spell to bar their passage
but quenthel rejects and says "save your magic. Jeggred, Ryld, carry Valas and Danifae"

wasnt at that time jeggred in minauthkeep, near the empty bodies of the companions?



Youre right on this point, I noticed it too.
I dont mean any disrespect by this, Richard, but what is the path for editing and proof-reading with novels at WotC lately? I was going to ask this in another thread due to me noticing quite a few spelling and grammer errors in Lady of Poison which i'm reading at the moment. In some cases it is quite appauling that it got through the proofread.


Reply author: The Wanderer
Replied on: 12 Aug 2004 13:52:23
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Lord Rad
...due to me noticing quite a few spelling and grammer errors in Lady of Poison which i'm reading at the moment.



The same seems to have happened in Forsaken House. There are only a few, but they are noticeable.

I actually believed that the word cwm was a mispelling as well, but it appeared so many times that I had to look it up and indeed found it. What is the origin of this word and how does one pronounce it?

And I just wanted to add that I really liked the novel City of Ravens. Jack has to be one of the funniest characters I've read about in a long time (I especially enjoyed his posing as The Dread Delgath ). Definetly one of my favorite novels. How did you come up with him?


Reply author: Phobos
Replied on: 12 Aug 2004 21:29:32
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Anubis
I actually believed that the word cwm was a mispelling as well, but it appeared so many times that I had to look it up and indeed found it. What is the origin of this word and how does one pronounce it?



it's welsh and i think it is pronounces koom like fool.... and it rocks in scrabble!


Reply author: Nysgath
Replied on: 13 Aug 2004 11:27:10
Message:

Mr. Baker, first of all, I want to let you know how much I am loving Forsaken House. This is one of the greatest Realms novels I have read yet. Anyways, I was wondering if it was your idea to put the pronounciation key at the back of the book? I really like that idea, and I wish more of the FR books had that.

Also, when do you plan on getting your own website??

Thanks!


Reply author: The Wanderer
Replied on: 13 Aug 2004 12:55:20
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Phobos

quote:
Originally posted by Anubis
I actually believed that the word cwm was a mispelling as well, but it appeared so many times that I had to look it up and indeed found it. What is the origin of this word and how does one pronounce it?



it's welsh and i think it is pronounces koom like fool.... and it rocks in scrabble!



Many thanks, Phobos. I'll be sure to use that one during my next game. I can just see the other player's faces.


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 13 Aug 2004 18:31:39
Message:

It was my mistake. Jeggred is indeed in Minauthkeep, and is not there to help the party levitate around.

That said... I like to explain it by saying that "Quenthel just *wanted* Jeggred there. She's in the habit of ordering him around, and just forgot for a moment that he wasn't there." I mean, haven't you ever called a friend by the wrong name?



quote:
Originally posted by norticus

hi mr baker

im translating the war of the spider queen series in turkish
ive just finished reading condemnation and have a spesific question about it

in the hardcover version, bottom of page 315, middle of chapter 19
the party is in demonweb and being followed by something
Pharaun offers to cast a spell to bar their passage
but quenthel rejects and says "save your magic. Jeggred, Ryld, carry Valas and Danifae"

wasnt at that time jeggred in minauthkeep, near the empty bodies of the companions?


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 13 Aug 2004 18:40:53
Message:

It's spelled cwm or cwmb, and pronounced KOOM. It's a high, relatively level area. You might also think of it as a pass, vale, or cirque. I've hiked around Mount Rainier a fair amount since moving out to Washington a few years back, so I was thinking of places like Spray Park or Seattle Park or Burroughs Mountain when I was envisioning the battle at Evereska's western gate.

Jack Ravenwild is one of my favorites, too. I can't claim complete credit for the Dread Delgath, though. My friend Scott Magner roleplayed a character named the Dread Delgath in a MonteCon (a local gathering of WotC game folks at Monte Cook's house) a few years back. I had converted the A1 adventure to 3rd Edition to run a short game there, and turned Delgath into a 6th-level sorcerer (he was formerly a 6th-level wizard in the pregenerated characters at the end of A1). Scott roleplayed Delgath exactly as I wrote him in City of Ravens, complete with the 3rd-person bit and the booming bombastic voice. It was a blast.

No website yet, maybe after I finish the trilogy. I've got to educate myself a bit.





quote:
Originally posted by Anubis

quote:
Originally posted by Lord Rad
...due to me noticing quite a few spelling and grammer errors in Lady of Poison which i'm reading at the moment.



The same seems to have happened in Forsaken House. There are only a few, but they are noticeable.

I actually believed that the word cwm was a mispelling as well, but it appeared so many times that I had to look it up and indeed found it. What is the origin of this word and how does one pronounce it?

And I just wanted to add that I really liked the novel City of Ravens. Jack has to be one of the funniest characters I've read about in a long time (I especially enjoyed his posing as The Dread Delgath ). Definetly one of my favorite novels. How did you come up with him?


Reply author: Bergan
Replied on: 13 Aug 2004 18:54:56
Message:

And... Sorry, I did ask this a fair while back on the Wizards boards.... But things may have changed since then...

Is there any plans yet for us seeing Jack again?


Reply author: stevem
Replied on: 14 Aug 2004 00:32:35
Message:

Richard Baker,

Congratulations on "The Forskaen House". Its an excellent book.

Two questions. First, don't High Mage candidates have to be 20th level? If Araevin is 15 + 1 or 2 fighter-like levels, he wouldn't qualify for the High Mage prestige class.

Second, will we see Jack Ravenwild again? I have to second some of the other posters, he rocked.

Steve Moss


Reply author: Purple Dragon Knight
Replied on: 14 Aug 2004 03:48:17
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by stevem

Two questions. First, don't High Mage candidates have to be 20th level? If Araevin is 15 + 1 or 2 fighter-like levels, he wouldn't qualify for the High Mage prestige class. <snip>
I'm not Rich, but IMO, even though Araevin is too young or inexperienced to receive High Mage training, it is nonetheless in the best interest of the High Mage organization to protect and care for the ones they have identified as potential candidates for this most impressive career.

We see the same happen to young athletes in today's world, especially in disciplines that require careful selection based on criteria such as body shape (like young gymnasts)


Reply author: Nysgath
Replied on: 14 Aug 2004 21:34:33
Message:

Hey Richard, I was just wondering who it was on the cover of Forsaken House.


Reply author: norticus
Replied on: 15 Aug 2004 19:30:28
Message:

thanx mr baker

so i'll leave it like that in the translation


Reply author: JSooner
Replied on: 16 Aug 2004 02:06:14
Message:

Mr. Baker,

Great job with "Forsaken House"! Excellent piece of work, one of the better FR novels to date. I am anxiously awaiting the next book. Had a question though -

***Spoiler****







in the book Sarya has a son Xhalph, but in the Lords of Darkness FR accessory, it states she has a nephew Xhalth. Any particular reason for the change?


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 23 Aug 2004 21:42:14
Message:

Sorry, no good reason; I got it wrong. I'm pretty far down that track, though, so I'm going to have to stick with it. It doesn't really make any difference in the story whether Xhalph is Sarya's son or nephew, so try not to dwell on it, I guess. (Of course, I can think of a sick daemonfey explanation for how Xhalp could be Sarya's son *and* her nephew, but I think I'd rather not go there...)




quote:
Originally posted by JSooner

Mr. Baker,

Great job with "Forsaken House"! Excellent piece of work, one of the better FR novels to date. I am anxiously awaiting the next book. Had a question though -

***Spoiler****







in the book Sarya has a son Xhalph, but in the Lords of Darkness FR accessory, it states she has a nephew Xhalth. Any particular reason for the change?


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 23 Aug 2004 21:48:02
Message:

Thanks, glad you liked it!

Yes, High Mage candidates need to be epic level (21st level). I see Araevin as a couple of levels short of where he needs to be, but getting close enough for the High Mages to take notice and begin evaluating him as a candidate.

Sorry, no immediate plans for Jack Ravenwild; I've got a full year of writing left on the Last Mythal before I can even let myself think about what comes next.


quote:
Originally posted by stevem

Richard Baker,

Congratulations on "The Forskaen House". Its an excellent book.

Two questions. First, don't High Mage candidates have to be 20th level? If Araevin is 15 + 1 or 2 fighter-like levels, he wouldn't qualify for the High Mage prestige class.

Second, will we see Jack Ravenwild again? I have to second some of the other posters, he rocked.

Steve Moss


Reply author: BrokenRulz
Replied on: 27 Aug 2004 16:53:29
Message:

Ladies and Gentleman, the moment has arrived! BrokenRulz is back with another book report! Today's letter pertains to Forsaken House by Richard Baker.

To begin...Richard Baker...a crime has been committed. A most terrible crime indeed. You haven't written enough books for Wizards!

My fellow Candlekeep surfers, I have just had one of the most exciting adventures of my reading career. From start to finish, this book had me hanging on every word, turning every page, thirsty for more!

Now, I am a harsh grader. Not by any sort of ego or need to be, I just am. And I give this book a 9 out of 10. Why not a 10 you ask? Simple: it wasn't long enough. I wanted more Richard Baker! I wanted to continue the travels of Araevin and crew! I wanted to know what the Fey'ri were going to do next and how!

It's been awhile since I've read an FR book that captured me so completely, I cite Salvatore's lastest as being the most successful, but RB, you came out of left field and smacked me upside the head with a wake up call that was both unexpected and needed. Where have you been man? Has being Creative Director taken so much of your time that you've just been teasing us up until now? What's up with dat!?

All in all folks, read this book. Ed Greenwood wasn't lying when he said it was one of the best written to date and I agree. Then, after you read it, pre order the next one. Heck, I'm embarrassed to say that other than your War of the SQ book, I haven't read any of your other FR books, but I can state truthfully that this will change soon.

So here's to Richard Baker! One of the new crown jewels of the FR novel line. I shall dedicate my next Prismatic Spray to you! If you didn't get that last sentence, you haven't read the book! So get out and do so!

Peace Out.


Reply author: VEDSICA
Replied on: 28 Aug 2004 05:20:52
Message:

He does like that spell just a little BR.I agree.One of the best novels written in quite some time.I was the same way as you.I was hanging on every word,every page.I would sometimes read certain pages twice so I didn't miss anything.Funny thing is that towards the end of the novel.I slowed down reading because I didn't want it to end.
SPOILERS







The thing that I liked about the end was that Aeravin,and not Sarya ended up with the Nightstar.More often than not it's the villians that end up with the item of power,and the heroes go off in search of it,and that's what drives the remaining of a trilogy.Not so in this case IMO.Not to say that Aeravin will lose it in the next novel.It was a great twist that I enjoyed.

Also to maybe answer a question up above.Isn't it true that a selukiira can make a novice mage into a high mage???So really Aeravin's levels shouldn't count against him.He has the knowledge of a high mage that makes it so if I am correct.At least that's what I read in the novel on a few occasions.

Also I think it's great that the some of the elves are considering a return to Faerun.With the daemonfey heading to Myth Drannor.This trilogy can only get better.Great job Rich.I enjoyed Forsaken House very much.


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 01 Sep 2004 17:56:52
Message:

Glad you liked the book! I'm very close to finishing the 1st draft of Farthest Reach, so it's good to know that book will be anticipated.

RE: prismatic spray... I actually went back late in the 2nd draft in Forsaken House and removed a couple of more spots where Araevin used the spell, replacing it with a different spell, just because I realized he'd been using it a bunch.


quote:
Originally posted by VEDSICA

He does like that spell just a little BR.I agree.One of the best novels written in quite some time.I was the same way as you.I was hanging on every word,every page.I would sometimes read certain pages twice so I didn't miss anything.Funny thing is that towards the end of the novel.I slowed down reading because I didn't want it to end.
SPOILERS







The thing that I liked about the end was that Aeravin,and not Sarya ended up with the Nightstar.More often than not it's the villians that end up with the item of power,and the heroes go off in search of it,and that's what drives the remaining of a trilogy.Not so in this case IMO.Not to say that Aeravin will lose it in the next novel.It was a great twist that I enjoyed.

Also to maybe answer a question up above.Isn't it true that a selukiira can make a novice mage into a high mage???So really Aeravin's levels shouldn't count against him.He has the knowledge of a high mage that makes it so if I am correct.At least that's what I read in the novel on a few occasions.

Also I think it's great that the some of the elves are considering a return to Faerun.With the daemonfey heading to Myth Drannor.This trilogy can only get better.Great job Rich.I enjoyed Forsaken House very much.


Reply author: SiriusBlack
Replied on: 11 Sep 2004 15:52:48
Message:

For those interested there is an author's profile up for Richard Baker at the WOTC site.


Reply author: Bruce Donohue
Replied on: 11 Sep 2004 17:26:01
Message:

Richard I was wanting to ask you a certian question


Spoiler....







Now that the Fey'ri are going to Myth Drannor, if they thought that the palebloods were bad, what will their opinion be in regards the drow House Jaerle being there and the former Elven Court, after all Ancoar (sorry about the spelling) was there birthplace? Though the Fey'ri want revenge on the elves, I still get the impression that despite their mixed heritage, they consider themselves to be Elves. Then you will have to also take into consideration the decaying mythal wild effects, the various demons that are there or did the Shades clear them all out with the Phaerimm.


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 13 Sep 2004 18:39:22
Message:

Forsaken House spoiler...







I've been thinking about that. I certainly can't see the Jaelre and Auzkovyn drow getting along with the daemonfey at all. Nor would the drow get along with any elves in Cormanthor who were fighting against the daemonfey. Under that scenario, the smart thing for the drow to do would be to stay out of sight, or at least watch things for a while until they figured out which side to back.



quote:
Originally posted by Bruce Donohue

Richard I was wanting to ask you a certian question


Spoiler....







Now that the Fey'ri are going to Myth Drannor, if they thought that the palebloods were bad, what will their opinion be in regards the drow House Jaerle being there and the former Elven Court, after all Ancoar (sorry about the spelling) was there birthplace? Though the Fey'ri want revenge on the elves, I still get the impression that despite their mixed heritage, they consider themselves to be Elves. Then you will have to also take into consideration the decaying mythal wild effects, the various demons that are there or did the Shades clear them all out with the Phaerimm.


Reply author: Absolution
Replied on: 13 Sep 2004 19:56:44
Message:

Hey, I'm new to these boards. I used to play AD&D when it was still the 2nd edition. But for the past 6-7 years I've only been reading the forgotten realms novels. I've almost read them all. And I've got to say that Forsaken House is truly one of the best I've read among the whole bunch. So kuddos to Mr. Baker. I also have a question ...

SPOILERS
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
So at the end of Forsaken House we know that Lady Dlardrageth is headed to Myth Drannor. At the end of the book, Malkizid says the following :

"But ... there are other mythals you might turn to your purposes.

(to which Sarya answers : Myth Drannor)
(Malkizid then continues)

I have no ability to manipulate the mythal of cormanthor, for I am not an elf. However, with your elf's blood and my knowledge of mythalcraft, we could accomplish far more in Myth Drannor than you could in Myth Glaurach."

But we also know that mythals can't be altered without the agreement of those who created it in the first place.

I don't have my books with me but I think that in one of the Elminster novels or 2nd edition rule books (El in Myth Drannor I think), we learned that he participated in the creation of the Myth Drannor mythal. Am I correct about this ?

If this is true then I'm wondering if there's an explanation as to why Sarya could manipulate the Myth Drannor's mythal without Elminster approval ?


Reply author: Walen
Replied on: 14 Sep 2004 03:52:10
Message:

Mr. Baker:

Excellent book, I very much enjoyed it and look forward to the rest of the series.

Two questions: 1) is Aervain still lower than epic level at the end of the first book?

and the related, spoiler protected question . . .
SPOILER











2) Have you worked out 3.5 stats for the Nightstar or selu'kiira (and will you tell us the stats if you have them)? In the Sea of Fallen Stars accessory and related fiction it suggests that acquisition of a selu'kiira can transform a lesser wizard into a High Mage. I am assuming this is what happened to Aervain.

Thanks.


Reply author: SiriusBlack
Replied on: 14 Sep 2004 04:07:03
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Walen
1) is Aervain still lower than epic level at the end of the first book?



Mr. Baker answered this earlier on this page. His reply is as follows:

quote:

Yes, High Mage candidates need to be epic level (21st level). I see Araevin as a couple of levels short of where he needs to be, but getting close enough for the High Mages to take notice and begin evaluating him as a candidate.



I hope this helps.

SB


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 14 Sep 2004 22:53:00
Message:

* * * * FORSAKEN HOUSE SPOILER * * * *








Yes, you're right; in general, mythals can't be tampered with as long as their builders are still around, not without those builders knowing about it. Trust me when I say that "Farthest Reach" doesn't ignore the question. Malkizid knows a great deal about ancient mythal traditions (technology, if you will) that were far more advanced than mythalcraft traditions in the last thousand years or so. And Araevin now has some insight into the ancient arts of mythalcraft too.




quote:
Originally posted by Absolution

Hey, I'm new to these boards. I used to play AD&D when it was still the 2nd edition. But for the past 6-7 years I've only been reading the forgotten realms novels. I've almost read them all. And I've got to say that Forsaken House is truly one of the best I've read among the whole bunch. So kuddos to Mr. Baker. I also have a question ...

SPOILERS
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
So at the end of Forsaken House we know that Lady Dlardrageth is headed to Myth Drannor. At the end of the book, Malkizid says the following :

"But ... there are other mythals you might turn to your purposes.

(to which Sarya answers : Myth Drannor)
(Malkizid then continues)

I have no ability to manipulate the mythal of cormanthor, for I am not an elf. However, with your elf's blood and my knowledge of mythalcraft, we could accomplish far more in Myth Drannor than you could in Myth Glaurach."

But we also know that mythals can't be altered without the agreement of those who created it in the first place.

I don't have my books with me but I think that in one of the Elminster novels or 2nd edition rule books (El in Myth Drannor I think), we learned that he participated in the creation of the Myth Drannor mythal. Am I correct about this ?

If this is true then I'm wondering if there's an explanation as to why Sarya could manipulate the Myth Drannor's mythal without Elminster approval ?


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 14 Sep 2004 23:00:26
Message:

Thanks, I'm glad you liked it!

Gosh, another spoiler alert seems necessary...

* * * SPOILER * * *







1) Yes, the spell of mythal-shaping that Araevin casts at the end of the book is an epic magic spell. If I had to guess, I'd presume that Araevin's adventures in Book 1 boosted him from 14th-15th on up to 17th or 18th, and then the Nightstar kicked his spellcasting a couple of levels past that, as selukiira are said to be able to do. Of course, he hasn't had much of an opportunity to learn a great number of new spells; he picked up a few 8th-9th level spells from the telkiira and the Nightstar, but the real prize in the Nightstar are the epic spells. Epic spells (High Magic) are incredibly expensive to research and learn, so I think it's a pretty nifty benefit of a selukiira if it can teach you some epic spells without the incredible expense in gold and XP. Or so it would go in game terms, anyway.






quote:
Originally posted by Walen

Mr. Baker:

Excellent book, I very much enjoyed it and look forward to the rest of the series.

Two questions: 1) is Aervain still lower than epic level at the end of the first book?

and the related, spoiler protected question . . .
SPOILER











2) Have you worked out 3.5 stats for the Nightstar or selu'kiira (and will you tell us the stats if you have them)? In the Sea of Fallen Stars accessory and related fiction it suggests that acquisition of a selu'kiira can transform a lesser wizard into a High Mage. I am assuming this is what happened to Aervain.

Thanks.


Reply author: Walen
Replied on: 15 Sep 2004 17:13:12
Message:

Thank you very much for the reply Mr. Baker.

I hope that future realms products will contain information on epic items like selu'kiira (hopefully Ancient Empires?).

Can't wait for the rest of the series.


Reply author: Bruce Donohue
Replied on: 16 Sep 2004 18:03:31
Message:

Hello Richard,


Spoiler....





Richard in regards to the second book and the Fey'ri going to Myth Drannor, I wanted to ask you a few things...

Will the Elves currently in Cormanthor, being those in Tangled Trees, Semberholme, Deepingdale (Bristar, Highmoon, Moonrise Hill and Eilistraee Drow and followers that Lord Ultah of Highmoon has allowed to live and work within Deepingdale, and lastly the Elves and the Druids Elves the Queen sent to the Elven court to re-settle and to rehabilitate the forest in and around the Elven Court) get involved or notified?

Though these elves aren't in great numbers, I am sure that somehow having the Auzkovyn Drow, House Jaelre, and now the Fey'ri stiring the pot, that things will become interesting. Not to mention when the Fey'ri find out how many Elves are indeed still living in Cormanthor, that their numbers are so small, that they will be an even bigger target to destroy than Evereska or the High Forest Elves were. Especially when one considers that allies will not be as readily available to aid them to defend themselves as Evereska and High Forest Elves were.


Reply author: Purple Dragon Knight
Replied on: 21 Sep 2004 23:28:02
Message:

Hi Rich -- not a question just a comment:

I believe Forsaken House is everything the cover claims it to be: I'm at p.250 now and I must honestly say that it highly ranks amidst the most enjoyable FR novel I've read. Here's why I think it is so incredibly, joyfully and deliciously good, IMHO:

S

P

O

I

L

E

R

S



1. We definitely get the feeling that you know what you are talking about throughout the novel. I get the impression that you made an honest effort - and succeeded! - to stay true to the setting, and that makes me, a fan of the FR setting, a gamer, someone who spends a large chunk of his life with his nose in the FR books, happy. Examples of these:
a. The elves are not cannon-fodder, nor they are militaristically organized like Lawful nations such as Cormyr. "Civilians" are as important as the "Soldiers" as seen by the composition of the Council. The Council makes a good job to illustrate their individualistic nature (Chaotic Good), and how Seiveril manages to gather troops without angering the Queen.
b. Finally! a novel that do not make the good guys look like bumbling fools! I think it's a first since the coming out of 3E, but I haven't read all the novels so that's just IMO. The Light side of the Force actually wins battles! I really liked how the elves push back the demons... I remember thinking "Finally, someone realized that the elves have arcane archers, bladesingers, clerics, wizards, etc. and actually depicted a battle where they used these abilities." I think a lot of authors these days gloss over a lot of things in an attempt to have their writing-style appear more "epic" or in touch with the "big picture." Personally, I think that forgetting about the little guys fighting on the ground is a mistake and make a novel look sloppy, especially to a FR fan. Kudos for not doing that Rich!
c. A behir!! need I say more!!
d. A genasi!! need I say more!! (actually yes, I do, as I believe that this is the first genasi appearing in a novel...)
e. FINALLY: believable villains!! not omniscient smart-arses who always think 6 years ahead of the present, but villains that can *GASP!* make mistakes too! (as proven by the Fey'ri's defeat in Evereska)

In conclusion, I'd say that it would perhaps be easy for an established author to take "more artistic license than he/she should" when writing a FR novel, but you managed, wonderfully, to keep the "wild ideas" to a minimum while drawing heavily from the lore and loose ends already in place within the setting, all while staying true to the game itself. You probably made the FR designers' job easier in the process, thanks to the absence of Realms-shaking Events. You kept battle loss to a realistic degree, not treating elves like incapable fools but rather like the deadly adversaries that they are (I can deal with 500 dead elves, not thousands upon thousands, as I know that they are already scarce within Faerūn). You made villains believable: yes, they have access to an ancient source of power that makes them a threat, but no, they are not so perfect as not to make any mistakes when using this power.

KUDOS! GENERAL 5 CANNON SALUTE! THANK YOU!

PDK


Reply author: Kuje
Replied on: 21 Sep 2004 23:43:34
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Purple Dragon Knight

d. A genasi!! need I say more!! (actually yes, I do, as I believe that this is the first genasi appearing in a novel...)


Elaine used a water genesi in her last Windwalker novel. :) And I dimly recall another showing up in another novel that was written for 3/3.5e.


Reply author: Tamsar
Replied on: 22 Sep 2004 19:38:26
Message:

Wasn't there an Eart Genesai Mage in lady of Poison? Whose name escapes me atm.


Reply author: Purple Dragon Knight
Replied on: 22 Sep 2004 21:03:04
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Tamsar

Wasn't there an Eart Genesai Mage in lady of Poison? Whose name escapes me atm.

Like I said guys, I haven't read all the novels yet. Windwalker is on the list and already waiting on my pile of unread novels. Anyhow, I found the idea of an air genasi refreshing (no pun intended).

Now, what about my other comments, you overanalyzing geeks!!


Reply author: SiriusBlack
Replied on: 23 Sep 2004 17:08:52
Message:

Mr. Baker:

Two questions regarding The Last Mythal series:

1. You advanced the timeline at a nice rate in the first book. Will this continue in the upcoming novels for the series?

2. Am I correct that by series end, the "Year of Risen Elfkin" will be fully understandable to FR readers?

Thank you again for an entertaining read and for any time spent answering these questions.

SB


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 23 Sep 2004 17:43:05
Message:

Thanks, PDK. Guess I can't say much more than that!

I just finished the first draft of Book 2, The Farthest Reach. Here's hoping that it keeps up with your expectations.

As an aside: I was up hiking on Mount Rainier a couple of weeks ago, and I found the spot that just made me say, "Jeeze, that's the Western Cwmb!" It's an area called Misty Park. It's at 5,000 feet or so, cupped by Mother Mountain on one side and, well, Mount Rainier on the other--a big, green, sparsely forested valley surrounded by towering peaks. So if anyone's wondering what the heck I was thinking when I called something a "cwm" (or "cwmb" or "coomb"), well, that was exactly it.



[quote]Originally posted by Purple Dragon Knight

[[snipped for author's modesty]]


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 23 Sep 2004 17:48:15
Message:

Two replies.

1. Yes, the whole trilogy winds up spanning about 10 months of world time. The third book should be finishing by the beginning of Uktar in 1374 DR.

2. You betcha. We've got several candidates, really. Certainly the released fey'ri under Sarya's command could be construed as "risen elfkin." Or, for that matter, Fflar Starbrow Melruth is a risen elfkin in every sense of the word. I wonder who Alaundo was talking about when he thought up that year name?


quote:
Originally posted by SiriusBlack

Mr. Baker:

Two questions regarding The Last Mythal series:

1. You advanced the timeline at a nice rate in the first book. Will this continue in the upcoming novels for the series?

2. Am I correct that by series end, the "Year of Risen Elfkin" will be fully understandable to FR readers?

Thank you again for an entertaining read and for any time spent answering these questions.

SB


Reply author: Wooly Rupert
Replied on: 23 Sep 2004 18:36:48
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by RichardBaker


2. You betcha. We've got several candidates, really. Certainly the released fey'ri under Sarya's command could be construed as "risen elfkin." Or, for that matter, Fflar Starbrow Melruth is a risen elfkin in every sense of the word. I wonder who Alaundo was talking about when he thought up that year name?


I had considered the fey'ri, but not Fflar... BTW, that one really surprised me! It's not oft that an event in a book totally surprises me.


Reply author: Purple Dragon Knight
Replied on: 23 Sep 2004 21:22:09
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by RichardBaker

Thanks, PDK. Guess I can't say much more than that!

I just finished the first draft of Book 2, The Farthest Reach. Here's hoping that it keeps up with your expectations.

As an aside: I was up hiking on Mount Rainier a couple of weeks ago, and I found the spot that just made me say, "Jeeze, that's the Western Cwmb!" It's an area called Misty Park. It's at 5,000 feet or so, cupped by Mother Mountain on one side and, well, Mount Rainier on the other--a big, green, sparsely forested valley surrounded by towering peaks. So if anyone's wondering what the heck I was thinking when I called something a "cwm" (or "cwmb" or "coomb"), well, that was exactly it.
Please don't tell me that your car was parked at "Foot Zero" and that you actually hiked up 5,000 feet... this would break all rules known to mankind! a fit gamer!!

Hmm... funny you mentioned hiking, for I just started doing so yesterday, around a local hill named "Mount Douglas" (Victoria, BC) My last few years in the Navy got me sitting behind a desk, and then I went on to finish my Masters full-time... (more sitting) So now I'm stuck with quite a few extra reserves that I quite frankly do not need.

Your post just inspired me to move my butt again... and try harder than stopping halfway up the climb. Today, I shall try for the top! (puts on determined gamer hat: The University Ballcap of Disguise!)


Reply author: SiriusBlack
Replied on: 23 Sep 2004 21:30:02
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by RichardBaker
2. You betcha. We've got several candidates, really. Certainly the released fey'ri under Sarya's command could be construed as "risen elfkin." Or, for that matter, Fflar Starbrow Melruth is a risen elfkin in every sense of the word. I wonder who Alaundo was talking about when he thought up that year name?



Tease!

Who, besides yourself, is involved in the decision making process when it comes to deciding what Alaundo was referring to for that year?

Thanks for the replies.

SB


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 27 Sep 2004 17:53:18
Message:

Once upon a time I was in shape, but no longer.

We took two cars, parked one at the Carbonado camp and drove the other to Mowich Lake (elev. 5000 ft.) We hiked about 5 miles up into Spray Park, all the way to the top (elev. 6400 ft.) Along the way we could look down into Misty Park and across it to Mother Mountain. Then we hoofed it about 7.5 miles down to Carbonado, dropping from 6600 ft. to 1300 ft. on that leg. The total was 12.5 miles, gaining about 2000 ft. going in (there's a lot of up and down in that first leg) and losing 4500 ft. going out. It took us 9 hours. And I hurt for a whole week afterwards.


quote:
Originally posted by Purple Dragon Knight

quote:
Originally posted by RichardBaker

Thanks, PDK. Guess I can't say much more than that!

I just finished the first draft of Book 2, The Farthest Reach. Here's hoping that it keeps up with your expectations.

As an aside: I was up hiking on Mount Rainier a couple of weeks ago, and I found the spot that just made me say, "Jeeze, that's the Western Cwmb!" It's an area called Misty Park. It's at 5,000 feet or so, cupped by Mother Mountain on one side and, well, Mount Rainier on the other--a big, green, sparsely forested valley surrounded by towering peaks. So if anyone's wondering what the heck I was thinking when I called something a "cwm" (or "cwmb" or "coomb"), well, that was exactly it.
Please don't tell me that your car was parked at "Foot Zero" and that you actually hiked up 5,000 feet... this would break all rules known to mankind! a fit gamer!!

Hmm... funny you mentioned hiking, for I just started doing so yesterday, around a local hill named "Mount Douglas" (Victoria, BC) My last few years in the Navy got me sitting behind a desk, and then I went on to finish my Masters full-time... (more sitting) So now I'm stuck with quite a few extra reserves that I quite frankly do not need.

Your post just inspired me to move my butt again... and try harder than stopping halfway up the climb. Today, I shall try for the top! (puts on determined gamer hat: The University Ballcap of Disguise!)


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 27 Sep 2004 17:55:53
Message:

The Book Department, mostly in the form of Phil Athans, who's the lead editor for FR these days.



quote:
Originally posted by SiriusBlack

quote:
Originally posted by RichardBaker
2. You betcha. We've got several candidates, really. Certainly the released fey'ri under Sarya's command could be construed as "risen elfkin." Or, for that matter, Fflar Starbrow Melruth is a risen elfkin in every sense of the word. I wonder who Alaundo was talking about when he thought up that year name?



Tease!

Who, besides yourself, is involved in the decision making process when it comes to deciding what Alaundo was referring to for that year?

Thanks for the replies.

SB


Reply author: Lauzoril
Replied on: 28 Sep 2004 18:46:08
Message:

Greetings, Richard.

I just completed the Forsaken House today and liked it very much, one of the most entertaining FR novels I've read recently. It had lots of interesting situations, characters and especially, magic. I'm eagerly waiting for the next book.

Possible spoiler.




One question. What happened to the horses Araevin disguised behind an illusion near the Grimlight's Lair? Are they still there?


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 30 Sep 2004 17:57:42
Message:

Sorry to say it, but I'm pretty sure they were eventually eaten by trolls. And the saddles, too. Trolls aren't discriminating.



quote:
Originally posted by Lauzoril

Greetings, Richard.

I just completed the Forsaken House today and liked it very much, one of the most entertaining FR novels I've read recently. It had lots of interesting situations, characters and especially, magic. I'm eagerly waiting for the next book.

Possible spoiler.




One question. What happened to the horses Araevin disguised behind an illusion near the Grimlight's Lair? Are they still there?




Reply author: Lord Rad
Replied on: 01 Oct 2004 09:56:47
Message:

Ya know, I was talkin about the fate of the horses only the other day to a friend of mine. I liked to think that they wandered off into the forest and eventually escaped

Alas, in truth, I think the trolls would have only been picking at the remains after they were likely slain alongside Brant

Whilst I'm here, I'll take this opportunity again to say what an excellent novel this is A fantastic FR novel, and a beautiful novel of elven flavor


Reply author: Steven Schend
Replied on: 01 Oct 2004 16:02:15
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Lord Rad

Ya know, I was talkin about the fate of the horses only the other day to a friend of mine. I liked to think that they wandered off into the forest and eventually escaped

Alas, in truth, I think the trolls would have only been picking at the remains after they were likely slain alongside Brant

Whilst I'm here, I'll take this opportunity again to say what an excellent novel this is A fantastic FR novel, and a beautiful novel of elven flavor



Maybe it's just my having read many a comic book in the past, but I embrace the "no body seen on screen, no death" rule. I'm still holding out hope that Brant is still alive.

I agree with the folks above--great novel.

Steven


Reply author: Lord Rad
Replied on: 01 Oct 2004 17:43:37
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Steven Schend

Maybe it's just my having read many a comic book in the past, but I embrace the "no body seen on screen, no death" rule. I'm still holding out hope that Brant is still alive.

I agree with the folks above--great novel.

Steven




I'll go with that
That scene will stick in my mind forever more. So tragic and so beautifully done. I had to put the book down after I read that part, compose myself, then contact a friend who was reading the novel at the same time to discuss, before I could continue

Quite right though, Brant may return ::nudges Rich Baker::


Reply author: Krafus
Replied on: 08 Oct 2004 16:17:39
Message:

Hello, Mr. Baker.

I recently had the pleasure of reading Condemnation and Forsaken House back-to-back, and I must say I'm very impressed. In Condemnation, you managed to remain true to the characters' personalities of earlier books. And Forsaken House... That has to be the best FR novel I read in several years (and I've mostly been keeping up with the FR novel line)! It was obvious you'd done a lot of research about previous FR sourcebooks and novels before writing it. I smiled and nodded several times when I saw characters and names familiar from other FR sources. FH has sparked anew my interest in FR and Dungeons & Dragons in general, and elves in particular. For that, I thank you.

Speaking of elves, the number-cruncher in me has come up with a few interrogations... What level are Seiveril Miritar, Fflar Melruth and Saelethil Dlardrageth? I'll understand if you can't give me a precise level, but I'd really like to know at least in what range of levels they are (or were, in Saelethil's case).


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 11 Oct 2004 19:48:09
Message:

I'm glad you liked them! And yes, I did a pretty good heap of research on Forsaken House; lots of poking around in "Cormanthyr, Empire of the Elves," "Fall of Myth Drannor," "Evermeet," and others. There's a flub or two I wish I hadn't made, but I tried hard to get it mostly right.

Here's my thinking on the characters you mention:

Seiveril: 21st-level cleric. He throws an epic resurrection spell to bring back Fflar. Maybe it was a miracle spell, though, in which case Seiveril could be 17th or 18th and get away with it.

Fflar: Maybe a 15th to 20th level fighter? Not sure exactly. When you're not dealing with a spellcaster, you don't have to be as exact in setting mental limits on the characters.

Saelethil: 25th-level wizard. He was an evil High Mage, after all.


quote:
Originally posted by Krafus

Hello, Mr. Baker.

I recently had the pleasure of reading Condemnation and Forsaken House back-to-back, and I must say I'm very impressed. In Condemnation, you managed to remain true to the characters' personalities of earlier books. And Forsaken House... That has to be the best FR novel I read in several years (and I've mostly been keeping up with the FR novel line)! It was obvious you'd done a lot of research about previous FR sourcebooks and novels before writing it. I smiled and nodded several times when I saw characters and names familiar from other FR sources. FH has sparked anew my interest in FR and Dungeons & Dragons in general, and elves in particular. For that, I thank you.

Speaking of elves, the number-cruncher in me has come up with a few interrogations... What level are Seiveril Miritar, Fflar Melruth and Saelethil Dlardrageth? I'll understand if you can't give me a precise level, but I'd really like to know at least in what range of levels they are (or were, in Saelethil's case).


Reply author: Krafus
Replied on: 12 Oct 2004 14:18:36
Message:

quote:
There's a flub or two I wish I hadn't made, but I tried hard to get it mostly right.


And you succeeded, Mr. Baker. I didn't notice any flubs.

quote:
Fflar: Maybe a 15th to 20th level fighter? Not sure exactly. When you're not dealing with a spellcaster, you don't have to be as exact in setting mental limits on the characters.

Saelethil: 25th-level wizard. He was an evil High Mage, after all.


Saelethil 25th level? Wow. No wonder he was contemptuous of Araevin. Is that 25 straight levels of wizard, or did he have a few levels of Archmage or some other arcane prestige class? As for Fflar, given the ease he had in fighting, I had him pegged in the 16th-20th level range (I was certain he had 4 attacks per round).


Reply author: valmontte
Replied on: 24 Nov 2004 03:05:51
Message:

I've just bought The Last Mythal today and, conincidently, I also bought the Underdark accessory in the same trip to the book store. Now I began reading the first few chapters of The Last Mythal before I needed a break and bpicked up the Underdark. In my first pass through the Underdark I noticed that there was a character in the art also refered to (and identically resembling the cover art for The Last Mythal) as Araevin.

Now I assume this is an intentional move by WotC. However, I am very intruiged by this fact. In the first chapter Araevin mentions the Company of the White Star; Are Belmora and Sanidine (Araevin's companions seen on the cover and interior of the Underdark) members of this adventuring group?

All in all... what more can we be told of Araevin's past (that we might not gleen from the trilogy? Also... what would Araevin's game stats be at the start of this novel? I'm a stat nut myself...

Thanks.
~Val


Reply author: Crust
Replied on: 25 Nov 2004 15:55:50
Message:

Hi, Mr. Baker.

Just wanted to drop a quick message and let you know that I thought Forsaken House was absolutely awesome. Thanks for this new series.


Reply author: valmontte
Replied on: 25 Nov 2004 16:57:59
Message:

Alright, so I finished reading all of Forsaken House last night. And along with all the other praise, an excellent, excellent novel in all regards and respects.

I am especially drawn to this novel because one of the first adventures I ran my players through as a DM was the 2nd edition adventure surrounding the destruction of Hellgate Keep by the Harpers, and indeed I am contemplating converting Forsaken House to an adventure for my players (though most of those characters died in Hellgate Keep they can continue on the story as Araevin and crew.)

I found that Belmora was indeed in the Company of the White Star (see my earlier post), however Sanidine from the Underdark accessory was not mentioned in Forsaken House.

Here is my rationalization for it:
Araevin spent many years traveling Faerūn in his studies and I'm sure his Company of the White Star was composed of many different members through different periods of his travels.

I've also noticecd the likeness of Araevin on numerous other Realms products as I've taken the time to leaf through my other sourcebooks after discovering the similarities between the Forsaken House art and the Underdark art.

That being said...
Mr Baker, perhaps after you finish up your Last Mythal series, you'd be willing to put on paper some of Araevin's earlier adventures in the form of short stories or game articles to appear in Dragon or Dungeon Magazine. That'd be awesome. Also, while I skipped reading most of the points on this board while I read the novel to avoid spoilers, I took the time to read it all this morning, and did find general level approximations for Araevin and some of the rest. However, I'd still love to see complete stats for Araevin and his crew as well as some of the villians and supporting cast from Forsaken House in a Dragon article some time soon (hopefully around the time you release your second enstallment of Last Mythal).

So I think I'm rambling now and I'll sign off. Happy Thanksgiving all.
~Val


Reply author: Valondil the Ranger
Replied on: 27 Nov 2004 21:51:19
Message:

Mr. Baker,

I'm very interested in reading Forsaken House, since I've heard nothing but good things about it. I haven't come across one bad review. Now that alone is enough to catch my eye

Anyway, the only problem I see is that I'm not familiar at all with the history of Toril's elves. Do you recommend me reading previous books in order to understand your Last Mythal Trilogy, or can I just jump right in?

Thanks a lot for your time.


Reply author: Ty
Replied on: 29 Nov 2004 13:18:23
Message:

Mr. Baker,

No questions for you today. Forsaken House was a wonderful novel that I thoroughly enjoyed reading. I've forgotten how wonderful the Forgotten Realms are in the hands of a skilled writer. In short, Thank You! I look forward to your continuation of the series.


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 29 Nov 2004 20:48:21
Message:

I've been second-guessing myself on this one in the last couple of months. Here's how it happened:

About three years ago, we created a set of "iconic" FR characters for use in playtesting and as generic FR adventurers on covers and in illustrations--just like core D&D uses Jozan, Regdar, Tordek, and the rest. Araevin was one of these characters (a sun elf wizard, obviously), and so we occasionally used him for illos, just as we randomly cycled through various sets of these characters for different FR products. Obviously, a set of generic adventurers have higher usefulness in some products than in others--so these guys appeared in City of the Spider Queen and Underdark, but not in Shining South or Unapproachable East.

(Belmora, Sanidine, and others are also on this list of iconic FR adventurers. The whole FR team at the time tackled this list, so the characters were created by different FR designers and editors. Araevin happened to be one I made up, though, so he's mine as much as he's anybody's. Other FR iconics included Teherrun, a tiefling rogue; Evendur, an aasimar paladin; Valak Vrinn, a drow bard; and Mara, a female human barbarian.)

When I started working on Forsaken House, I knew that I wanted an elf protagonist, since the whole series was supposed to be about elves. And more specifically I wanted a sun elf protagonist, because I sort of wanted to "rehabilitate" sun elves a bit. They've come off as more lawful evil than chaotic good in a lot of the material we've done about elves. Once I settled on a sun elf wizard, I naturally began to think of him as "Araevin" and used the name as a placeholder in the early story outlines. But the placeholder grew on me, and I eventually said to myself, "I like the name, I like the look, why change it?"

Anyway, I certainly knew that we'd used Araevin in a fair amount of art in several RPG sourcebooks, but I decided to stick with Araevin-the-iconic as the vision for Araevin-the-protagonist. In retrospect, it might have been a little "cleaner" to just make up a whole new name for the guy in Forsaken House, but there it is.

Araevin clearly has a history of adventuring in Faerun, but I think it's also clear that Araevin (the Forsaken House protagonist) couldn't have stomped around in Maerimydra in the events of the City of the Spider Queen adventure, where Araevin (the iconic adventurer) happens to appear. The timing's off, since we know that close to twenty years have gone by since Araevin last adventured with his old comrades. That's one of the reasons I'm second-guessing myself on the use of the same character name.


quote:
Originally posted by valmontte

I've just bought The Last Mythal today and, conincidently, I also bought the Underdark accessory in the same trip to the book store. Now I began reading the first few chapters of The Last Mythal before I needed a break and bpicked up the Underdark. In my first pass through the Underdark I noticed that there was a character in the art also refered to (and identically resembling the cover art for The Last Mythal) as Araevin.

Now I assume this is an intentional move by WotC. However, I am very intruiged by this fact. In the first chapter Araevin mentions the Company of the White Star; Are Belmora and Sanidine (Araevin's companions seen on the cover and interior of the Underdark) members of this adventuring group?

All in all... what more can we be told of Araevin's past (that we might not gleen from the trilogy? Also... what would Araevin's game stats be at the start of this novel? I'm a stat nut myself...

Thanks.
~Val


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 29 Nov 2004 20:53:16
Message:

I think you could handle it easily enough. Several folks in my immediate family read it, and none of them are gamers or FR fans. They didn't seem to have any real trouble. (But then Mom will always say she liked it, won't she?)

One of the criticisms I've heard about the book is that I tell you too many times about how Evermeet got invaded just a couple of years ago. I tried to be pretty clear about who was who and what happened when as far as history and backstory go.



quote:
Originally posted by Valondil the Ranger

Mr. Baker,

I'm very interested in reading Forsaken House, since I've heard nothing but good things about it. I haven't come across one bad review. Now that alone is enough to catch my eye

Anyway, the only problem I see is that I'm not familiar at all with the history of Toril's elves. Do you recommend me reading previous books in order to understand your Last Mythal Trilogy, or can I just jump right in?

Thanks a lot for your time.


Reply author: Hoondatha
Replied on: 04 Dec 2004 02:08:16
Message:

Hi there. I've been gone a while and have been trying to read my way back into the present (both here and with novels), though I haven't been able to read much in this thread because I'm only a few pages into Forsaken House and dont' want it spoiled. So, my first comment is a thanks to everyone for using spoiler markers and allowing me to (mostly) safely skip around.

My main question, though, deals with the whole War of the Spider Queen, and, as I'm currently about a quarter of the way through Condemnation (I know, I know, but I don't like buying hardcovers, and so I have to wait for them to come out in paperback), I thought I'd address the question to Mr. Baker.

Forgive me if this has been asked by others elsewhere, but I'm really curious how the series came about, what RA Salvatore's role in it is (just editor? originated the idea?), was there a great meeting-of-the-authors or outline of where things would be going? I'm really curious about everything behind the pages, and anything you could shed light on would be wonderful.

Many thanks.


Reply author: Seismo
Replied on: 06 Dec 2004 08:13:23
Message:

I see that Dungeons & Dragons For Dummies is coming out next year.

Heh, I wonder what's in this one.

I should read it. Might learn how to play.


Reply author: valmontte
Replied on: 06 Dec 2004 18:50:46
Message:

Well, personally, I like seeing Araevin-the-protaganist and Araevin-the-iconic side by side. Heck, the more art you have of a character, the better... I can understand you second-guessing your decision due to his appearance in City of the Spider Queen because that plays with the time line... so my suggestion is put him in sourcebooks, but keep him out of adventures. After all, Araevin-the-protaginist did have a wide adventuring campaign of his own... so if he appears in sourcebooks from different areas of Faerūn, thats just fine... but putting him in adventures may "mess with" his time line even more...


Reply author: Lord Rad
Replied on: 11 Dec 2004 19:21:16
Message:

I see the new cover art and details page is up at WotC for Farthest Reach.

Rich, what can you tell us about the picture on the cover? I assume you're very happy with this artwork I'm very much looking forward to this novel, the first book in the trilogy was amazing.


Reply author: Purple Dragon Knight
Replied on: 11 Dec 2004 21:59:07
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by RichardBaker

When I started working on Forsaken House, I knew that I wanted an elf protagonist, since the whole series was supposed to be about elves. And more specifically I wanted a sun elf protagonist, because I sort of wanted to "rehabilitate" sun elves a bit. They've come off as more lawful evil than chaotic good in a lot of the material we've done about elves.
Oh!!

Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!

You're the King, Rich: I've hoped for a long time that an FR author would tackle this erroneous image the literature sun elves have been displaying. A million thanks!

PDK,
an avid sun elf fan, who firmly believes that elitism does not imply racism or slavery... Ayn Rand rules!!


Reply author: Hoondatha
Replied on: 12 Dec 2004 04:40:02
Message:

This is DEFINATELY not the place to get into an argument over Ann Rand and her rather extreme philosophy, so I'm not going to touch it.

That said, I wanted to voice agreement with the first half of that post. I'm really glad that the sun elves are getting some "hero" treatment, in addition to their "non-drow elven villian" treatment. I think both are needed, and we haven't been seeing much of the first view.


Reply author: Purple Dragon Knight
Replied on: 12 Dec 2004 09:31:44
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Hoondatha

This is DEFINATELY not the place to get into an argument over Ann Rand and her rather extreme philosophy, so I'm not going to touch it.
I was talking about Ayn Rand, not Ann Rand... I have not read the work of Ann Rand, but Google showed me the following list: http://www.anybook4less.com/author/Ann+Rand.html

Maybe we were talking about two different persons? The "Ayn" Rand I was referring to does not strike me as someone "extreme"... (philosophical, yes... extreme, doubtful... unless you care to elaborate?)


Reply author: wwwwwww
Replied on: 12 Dec 2004 19:09:54
Message:

Mr. Baker,

Do you have a personal website?


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 13 Dec 2004 18:13:04
Message:

Sorry, but I don't. Maybe that's the next project I'll tackle once I finish up the Last Mythal trilogy.


quote:
Originally posted by wwwwwww

Mr. Baker,

Do you have a personal website?


Reply author: Mystery_Man
Replied on: 13 Dec 2004 23:44:22
Message:

Hi Rich!

This question may have been asked before so I apologize in advance. My curiosity was piqued from another thread and now I have to know. Years ago Mystra banned 10th level spells (back in 2E) and now that we're into 3E and Epic spells does this ban still apply? There are spells of Epic level in the PGtF so I would assume that this ban is now lifted? What's going on?


Reply author: Hoondatha
Replied on: 14 Dec 2004 17:34:32
Message:

Ayn Rand and Ann Rand are the same person (well, at least as I was referring to them. I'm sure there are other Ann Rands out there). She changed her name from Ann to Ayn (or at least that's what I remember from English class). And I would call any philosophy that advocates doing whatever you have to do to others just to advance yourself both extreme and rather ugly.

But that's all I want to say on this subject. I'd much rather talk about books I like.

PS: Just finished Forsaken House, and it's a really good read. Just one question: what happened to Sarya's psionicist son?


Reply author: Krafus
Replied on: 14 Dec 2004 20:34:18
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by HoondathaPS: Just finished Forsaken House, and it's a really good read. Just one question: what happened to Sarya's psionicist son?



I think I can answer that one... In Lords of Darkness, p. 126, we learn that Ryvvik (the son in question) tried to usurp Sarya's position and got killed for it.


Reply author: Purple Dragon Knight
Replied on: 15 Dec 2004 08:28:18
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Hoondatha

And I would call any philosophy that advocates doing whatever you have to do to others just to advance yourself both extreme and rather ugly.
Hmm... you seem more solid than me on this subject. I don't know her that much except for having read "Atlas Shrugged," which I found somewhat refreshing and encouraging as a nerd with high hopes of one day, contributing to the betterment of this world. It's a good example of planning and developing a strategy for a business idea one may have: it basically shows that one should take action when they have the smarts to succeed... too many friends and relatives I know shortchange themselves on a regular basis and end up trading their dreams for small desires.


Reply author: Xysma
Replied on: 21 Dec 2004 14:36:13
Message:

What a book! You've really created some memorable (and hopefully long-lasting) characters. I especially enjoyed Maresa, what prompted you to use a genasi? As cool as they are, they get little treatment in the novels. Also, I had really hoped that Grayth had access to the Renewal domain of Lathander, I really hated to see him go.


Reply author: SirUrza
Replied on: 21 Dec 2004 19:02:51
Message:

So I started Forsaken City yesterday (against my better judgement because I had to many things going on.) I don't really want to reread the first 5 chapters over, but I feel almost like I missed something.

The back of Forsaken House states Araevin is from Evereska, but everything I've read (the first 70something pages) leads me to think he's from Evermeet. Did I overlook something or is the back of the book a misprint?


Reply author: SiriusBlack
Replied on: 22 Dec 2004 05:02:49
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by SirUrza
The back of Forsaken House states Araevin is from Evereska, but everything I've read (the first 70something pages) leads me to think he's from Evermeet. Did I overlook something or is the back of the book a misprint?



I think that's a misprint. He's clearly as you have found out in the novel from Evermeet. His fiance also needs to put a bell around his neck to keep track of him.


Reply author: SirUrza
Replied on: 22 Dec 2004 05:22:45
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by SiriusBlack

I think that's a misprint. He's clearly as you have found out in the novel from Evermeet. His fiance also needs to put a bell around his neck to keep track of him.


Yes, that I found out too.

Well I'm glad I didn't misread anything and that the back cover was botched. Just 1 inaccuracy that everyone involved in final production completely overlooked. Makes me wonder if the person incharge of the cover et al actually read the novel. :)


Reply author: Krafus
Replied on: 22 Dec 2004 14:26:46
Message:

Forsaken House's cover nearly makes me grind my teeth whenever I see it... Have you seen the size of Araevin's (I assume it's Araevin) arms and fingers? His arms are way too muscled, and his fingers have the thickness of a dwarf's. Not only is he an elf, but he's a mage, who don't tend toward physical exercise overmuch. And there's no hint in the book that he's got a bodybuilder fetish.

Oh, and Mr. Baker, have you thought about publishing certain characters' stats in Dragon Magazine? I know I'd like to see the full stats of Araevin, Ilsevele, Seiveril, Sarya and Fflar.


Reply author: SiriusBlack
Replied on: 22 Dec 2004 16:11:56
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Krafus
Oh, and Mr. Baker, have you thought about publishing certain characters' stats in Dragon Magazine? I know I'd like to see the full stats of Araevin, Ilsevele, Seiveril, Sarya and Fflar.



I'd love to second that request and move this motion towards a vote. What's that? There is no voting when it comes to art


Reply author: SirUrza
Replied on: 22 Dec 2004 18:32:48
Message:

quote:
I'd love to second that request and move this motion towards a vote. What's that? There is no voting when it comes to art



Yeap yeap, stats in Dragon would be awesome.


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 22 Dec 2004 20:10:15
Message:

In general, I have nothing to do with the cover they give me. Sometimes I get great ones (Condemnation springs to mind), sometimes I get, well, not-quite-so-great ones. I'm actually pretty happy with the Last Mythal covers, but mostly because I like the white jacket color and title arrangement. It makes 'em pop off the shelf, you can pick out Forsaken House in the middle of a big pile of other WotC books.

I'd like to do that article with the character stats sometime, it's just a matter of when. Maybe I'll find some time for it in a few months. Right now I'm busy with finishing up Farthest Reach and D&D for Dummies, then I have a story to write for Realms of the Elves, then I need to get crackin' on Final Gate so that I'm not stuck writing the book in the middle of the summer... because I've found that I just *hate* spending summer weekends sitting at my desk and writing.



quote:
Originally posted by Krafus

Forsaken House's cover nearly makes me grind my teeth whenever I see it... Have you seen the size of Araevin's (I assume it's Araevin) arms and fingers? His arms are way too muscled, and his fingers have the thickness of a dwarf's. Not only is he an elf, but he's a mage, who don't tend toward physical exercise overmuch. And there's no hint in the book that he's got a bodybuilder fetish.

Oh, and Mr. Baker, have you thought about publishing certain characters' stats in Dragon Magazine? I know I'd like to see the full stats of Araevin, Ilsevele, Seiveril, Sarya and Fflar.


Reply author: Purple Dragon Knight
Replied on: 22 Dec 2004 23:08:51
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by RichardBaker

In general, I have nothing to do with the cover they give me. Sometimes I get great ones (Condemnation springs to mind), sometimes I get, well, not-quite-so-great ones. I'm actually pretty happy with the Last Mythal covers, but mostly because I like the white jacket color and title arrangement. It makes 'em pop off the shelf, you can pick out Forsaken House in the middle of a big pile of other WotC books.

I'd like to do that article with the character stats sometime, it's just a matter of when. Maybe I'll find some time for it in a few months. Right now I'm busy with finishing up Farthest Reach and D&D for Dummies, then I have a story to write for Realms of the Elves, then I need to get crackin' on Final Gate so that I'm not stuck writing the book in the middle of the summer... because I've found that I just *hate* spending summer weekends sitting at my desk and writing.



quote:
Originally posted by Krafus

Forsaken House's cover nearly makes me grind my teeth whenever I see it... Have you seen the size of Araevin's (I assume it's Araevin) arms and fingers? His arms are way too muscled, and his fingers have the thickness of a dwarf's. Not only is he an elf, but he's a mage, who don't tend toward physical exercise overmuch. And there's no hint in the book that he's got a bodybuilder fetish.

Oh, and Mr. Baker, have you thought about publishing certain characters' stats in Dragon Magazine? I know I'd like to see the full stats of Araevin, Ilsevele, Seiveril, Sarya and Fflar.



I for one loved the Forsaken House cover... the tensed muscles *could* have something to do with the fact that he was MIND-CONTROLLED and actively DOMINATED by the big bad Fey'ri lady!

Anyhow, yes: please keep the white covers as I have a low Spot modifier... I love to see them "jump at me"... As for the actual quality of the cover art, I personally liked it very much, as it is reminiscent of the PGtoF and MoF covers (I love those half-blurred oil paintings... same with the FR DM screen... it adds an antique feel to the Realms that "jives" with me, brothas!)

Knock on wood!!! as long as you don't put anime-style characters as part of the FR art, I'm fine (death to certain "planetouched" pictures in Races of Faerun!!)


Reply author: SirUrza
Replied on: 23 Dec 2004 23:08:22
Message:

Finished Forsaken House last night. Wow, talk about a cool story. I can't wait to see where things go from here. 2 thumbs up.


Reply author: Lameth
Replied on: 26 Dec 2004 10:15:11
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by RichardBaker

then I have a story to write for Realms of the Elves,


Can you tell us something about the story?


Reply author: Elfinblade
Replied on: 04 Jan 2005 13:40:40
Message:

Greetings Mr.Baker.

I just finished reading Forsaken House, and WOW! what a book! Great job man! cant wait for nr.2! This one is goin on my top 5 list


Reply author: Mystery_Man
Replied on: 04 Jan 2005 15:02:04
Message:

Hi Mr. Baker!

How does the ban on 10th level from 2E spells affect Epic level spells in 3E?


Reply author: Maecenus of Westgate
Replied on: 04 Jan 2005 18:59:12
Message:

Almost done with Forsaken House and I must say that this is absolutely one of the best FR books I have read! Congratulations on such a fine story! I hope they decide to release this series in hardback some day so that I can proudly display it on my mantle next to my War of the Spider Queen books.


Reply author: Wooly Rupert
Replied on: 04 Jan 2005 23:04:59
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Elf_Friend

Hi Mr. Baker!

How does the ban on 10th level from 2E spells affect Epic level spells in 3E?



Somehow, it doesn't affect epic spells... Proctiv's Move Mountain was originally a 10th level spell, and now it's an epic spell.


Reply author: George Krashos
Replied on: 04 Jan 2005 23:38:01
Message:

"Lost Empires of Faerun" will reveal all no doubt, given Rich's Table of Contents. Not long to go now ...

-- George Krashos


Reply author: Elven One
Replied on: 23 Jan 2005 18:05:17
Message:

I originally posted this on the Wizards forums, but thats not the place for novel discussions.

I just finished reading Forsaken House, very well written. One of the best FR books I've read, can't wait for for the second book to come out. I was looking through some old material and noticed an interesting fact. The wonderous figurine Guenhwyvar currently owned by Drizzt Do'Urden, was crafted in Myth Drannor and given to Josidiah Starym. Both Fflar and Josidiah were famous and important during the last days of Myth Drannor (I'm not sure what they're relationship was, friends?). Since Fflar has been resurrected and Drizzt left Mithral Hall with Innovindel, is Drizzt, in any way, involved in the plot of the elven return to Faerun? What was the the relationship between Fflar and Josidiah? The reasoning behind my question was that if they Drizzt and Fflar ever met, I'm quite sure that Fflar and Guenhwyvar would recognize each other. Then again different authors behind these characters, you and Mr. Salvatore. I was looking over some other FR info and the Tree of Souls came up.

Question to Mr. Baker: Is Drizzt or Guenhwyvar, in any way, involved in the plot of the elven return to Faerun? What was the the relationship between Fflar and Josidiah? Is the Tree of Souls involved in the Last Mythal trilogy? Thanks!


Reply author: DDH_101
Replied on: 23 Jan 2005 20:52:27
Message:

Josidiah was a member of the Council of Twelve, was he not? So Fflar as the captain of Myth Drannor's army, should have at least have a working relationship with him.


Reply author: George Krashos
Replied on: 23 Jan 2005 22:59:49
Message:

Problem is, Josidiah "lost" Guen prior to returning to Myth Drannor after his long absence. Thus Fflar would never have met/seen Guen to recognise her - although he may have heard of her.

-- George Krashos


Reply author: Wooly Rupert
Replied on: 23 Jan 2005 23:59:18
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by George Krashos

Problem is, Josidiah "lost" Guen prior to returning to Myth Drannor after his long absence. Thus Fflar would never have met/seen Guen to recognise her - although he may have heard of her.

-- George Krashos




Indeed. But were there any details ever given of this loss? We know he lost her in the Underdark, but do we know how, or how she made it into drow hands?


Reply author: DDH_101
Replied on: 24 Jan 2005 01:15:04
Message:

Wooly, it was rumoured that Josidiah traded Guen for the Soldier's Blade, the weapon that he promised to return to Myth Drannor years ago with his companions when they left for the Twisted Tower.


Reply author: Wooly Rupert
Replied on: 24 Jan 2005 01:52:01
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by DDH_101

Wooly, it was rumoured that Josidiah traded Guen for the Soldier's Blade, the weapon that he promised to return to Myth Drannor years ago with his companions when they left for the Twisted Tower.



Interesante... What is the source of this information?


Reply author: Elven One
Replied on: 24 Jan 2005 02:54:15
Message:

The information concerning Josidiah Starym can be found in Cormanthyr Empire of the Elves and the Fall of Myth Drannor. The timelines and character descriptions have bits and pieces, you just have to look, takes a while. I couldn't find the rumors of Guen trade but I have heard of them as well.


Reply author: Wooly Rupert
Replied on: 24 Jan 2005 03:22:56
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Elven One

The information concerning Josidiah Starym can be found in Cormanthyr Empire of the Elves and the Fall of Myth Drannor. The timelines and character descriptions have bits and pieces, you just have to look, takes a while. I couldn't find the rumors of Guen trade but I have heard of them as well.



I'm familiar with the other material, just not the rumor.


Reply author: SiriusBlack
Replied on: 24 Jan 2005 04:15:49
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by Elven One

The information concerning Josidiah Starym can be found in Cormanthyr Empire of the Elves and the Fall of Myth Drannor. The timelines and character descriptions have bits and pieces, you just have to look, takes a while. I couldn't find the rumors of Guen trade but I have heard of them as well.



I'm familiar with the other material, just not the rumor.



The only relevant blurb I'm aware of comes in the Fall of Myth Drannor tome. In detailing Starym's return with one of the legendary blades, it notes he doesn't have the figurine any longer. Sorry, I can't recall more or the exact page number. I don't have access to the PDF at this moment.


Reply author: Wooly Rupert
Replied on: 24 Jan 2005 06:13:34
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by SiriusBlack

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by Elven One

The information concerning Josidiah Starym can be found in Cormanthyr Empire of the Elves and the Fall of Myth Drannor. The timelines and character descriptions have bits and pieces, you just have to look, takes a while. I couldn't find the rumors of Guen trade but I have heard of them as well.



I'm familiar with the other material, just not the rumor.



The only relevant blurb I'm aware of comes in the Fall of Myth Drannor tome. In detailing Starym's return with one of the legendary blades, it notes he doesn't have the figurine any longer. Sorry, I can't recall more or the exact page number. I don't have access to the PDF at this moment.



I recall that much, and I further seem to recall that he wouldn't talk about what happened to Guen. I'm just curious about this rumor DDH mentioned...


Reply author: Steven Schend
Replied on: 24 Jan 2005 18:13:56
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by SiriusBlack

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by Elven One

The information concerning Josidiah Starym can be found in Cormanthyr Empire of the Elves and the Fall of Myth Drannor. The timelines and character descriptions have bits and pieces, you just have to look, takes a while. I couldn't find the rumors of Guen trade but I have heard of them as well.



I'm familiar with the other material, just not the rumor.



The only relevant blurb I'm aware of comes in the Fall of Myth Drannor tome. In detailing Starym's return with one of the legendary blades, it notes he doesn't have the figurine any longer. Sorry, I can't recall more or the exact page number. I don't have access to the PDF at this moment.



I recall that much, and I further seem to recall that he wouldn't talk about what happened to Guen. I'm just curious about this rumor DDH mentioned...



I'm fairly certain I'm to blame for that rumor, as it's hinted at if not clearly stated in FOMD. I figured Josidiah wouldn't part with Gwen without an excrutiatingly good reason, and returning one of the fabled blades of power to Cormanthyr (stolen long before his day, if memory serves) would be one of the few. It's one of the hidden things in C:EoE and FoMD that I didn't want to underscore, leaving it as a reward for careful readers.

Of course, one of the other things/potential story developments I left in FoMD was a trick from comic books: If there's no body....

Steven


Reply author: DDH_101
Replied on: 24 Jan 2005 22:42:03
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by DDH_101

Wooly, it was rumoured that Josidiah traded Guen for the Soldier's Blade, the weapon that he promised to return to Myth Drannor years ago with his companions when they left for the Twisted Tower.



Interesante... What is the source of this information?



Wooly, I found it in Forgotten Realms: The Library website in its timeline.

674/Year of the Nomad

Josidiah does not take up his rightful place as Lord-Speaker of House Starym, but he does (by right of the elf-blade he restores to Myth Drannor) take over the leadership of the Akh'Faer and thus rise to a seat on the Council of Twelve. Josidiah refuses to discuss it, but many notice that he no longer walks with his magnificent cat Guenhwyvar, and some whisper he had to trade the cat's figurine of power for the blade. Of his 12 original comrades, only one survived: Onas Ulondarr, an elf bladesinger of House Ulondarr. Returning to the city married to Maira Shieldark, a human wizardess of Arabel, they bring with them four adult half-elf children (three women, one man; all rangers): Alupiira, Vaeala, Shaeia, and Rahsil.


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 24 Jan 2005 23:26:31
Message:

I hadn't really thought much about Fflar and Josidiah. It seems likely they knew each other at least casually, but beyond that, I just don't know (it hasn't been really relevant in the Last Mythal, so I haven't nailed it down). In any event, Drizzt and Guen aren't directly involved in the Return, at least not in any causative manner.

I think there's an excellent chance Fflar would recognize Guen, due to Josidiah's fame around Myth Drannor long before the Weeping War--whether or not that would work in reverse, I don't know, since Fflar didn't really come into prominence until the last few weeks of the city's defense, and Guen had been "lost" by Josidiah by that point of time.

As far as the Tree of Souls, that's Elaine Cunningham's story to tell, so I've been sort of staying away from it.


quote:
Originally posted by Elven One

I originally posted this on the Wizards forums, but thats not the place for novel discussions.

I just finished reading Forsaken House, very well written. One of the best FR books I've read, can't wait for for the second book to come out. I was looking through some old material and noticed an interesting fact. The wonderous figurine Guenhwyvar currently owned by Drizzt Do'Urden, was crafted in Myth Drannor and given to Josidiah Starym. Both Fflar and Josidiah were famous and important during the last days of Myth Drannor (I'm not sure what they're relationship was, friends?). Since Fflar has been resurrected and Drizzt left Mithral Hall with Innovindel, is Drizzt, in any way, involved in the plot of the elven return to Faerun? What was the the relationship between Fflar and Josidiah? The reasoning behind my question was that if they Drizzt and Fflar ever met, I'm quite sure that Fflar and Guenhwyvar would recognize each other. Then again different authors behind these characters, you and Mr. Salvatore. I was looking over some other FR info and the Tree of Souls came up.

Question to Mr. Baker: Is Drizzt or Guenhwyvar, in any way, involved in the plot of the elven return to Faerun? What was the the relationship between Fflar and Josidiah? Is the Tree of Souls involved in the Last Mythal trilogy? Thanks!


Reply author: Wooly Rupert
Replied on: 24 Jan 2005 23:40:03
Message:

Page 18, Fall of Myth Drannor. Got it. Thank you, DDH, for aiming me in the right direction, and thanks to esteemed Sage Schend for offering explanation for the rumor.

Still... The idea of Josidiah trading away Guen, even for a legendary blade, just doesn't quite work for me. I've always assumed that she was somehow captured or stolen away from him, and he found the blade at another time.

I can see why some would think he traded her away, but it seems out of character for Josie.


Reply author: Elven One
Replied on: 25 Jan 2005 00:48:22
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

Page 18, Fall of Myth Drannor. Got it. Thank you, DDH, for aiming me in the right direction, and thanks to esteemed Sage Schend for offering explanation for the rumor.

Still... The idea of Josidiah trading away Guen, even for a legendary blade, just doesn't quite work for me. I've always assumed that she was somehow captured or stolen away from him, and he found the blade at another time.

I can see why some would think he traded her away, but it seems out of character for Josie.



I on the other hand find it quite believeable, just sad. Think about it, Josidiah promised to return with the Soldier's Blade to prove that not all of house Starym is worthless, he needed to redeem himself, his house, and prove to the Coronal that he is indeed worthy of his niece's hand. I figure that its most likely a trade since he has the blade and the drow end up with the figurine, for he wouldn't part with it lightly and certainly would look for it if it was taken or lost. It is indeed a difficult choice but his duty to his people, his house, and his promise to return with the blade must come first. Over centuries Guen's figurine finds its way to Menzo, etc etc, until Drizzt becomes the current owner. Thats how I imagine it happened.


Reply author: Wooly Rupert
Replied on: 25 Jan 2005 01:35:39
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Elven One

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

Still... The idea of Josidiah trading away Guen, even for a legendary blade, just doesn't quite work for me. I've always assumed that she was somehow captured or stolen away from him, and he found the blade at another time.

I can see why some would think he traded her away, but it seems out of character for Josie.



I on the other hand find it quite believeable, just sad. Think about it, Josidiah promised to return with the Soldier's Blade to prove that not all of house Starym is worthless, he needed to redeem himself, his house, and prove to the Coronal that he is indeed worthy of his niece's hand. I figure that its most likely a trade since he has the blade and the drow end up with the figurine, for he wouldn't part with it lightly and certainly would look for it if it was taken or lost. It is indeed a difficult choice but his duty to his people, his house, and his promise to return with the blade must come first. Over centuries Guen's figurine finds its way to Menzo, etc etc, until Drizzt becomes the current owner. Thats how I imagine it happened.



But is it really redemption if he has to trade away a friend and ally for a sword? Ditto for striking a bargain with a drow... Josidiah was an honorable sort, so I don't see him willingly letting a noble ally fall into the hands of the drow. I think it more likely that he was captured and his possessions stripped from him, which included the onyx figurine. Some time after that, he managed to escape and also to find the blade, but by then, the figurine was long gone. Or perhaps he found the blade first, and after his escape, managed to reclaim it, but Guen had in the interim been carried away. That's how I've always seen it happening.

An even worse turn of events, which would better explain his silence: He found the blade, but was soon after captured by drow, who stripped him of his possessions. He escaped, and reclaimed everything but Guenhywyvar, who by that time had fallen into the clutches of a seriously powerful drow wizard. Josidiah tried to rescue her, but his foe forced Guen to fight Josie. Unwilling to kill Guen, and unable to counter the more powerful magic of the wizard, Josidiah was forced to retreat.


Reply author: SiriusBlack
Replied on: 25 Jan 2005 02:46:41
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Elven One
I on the other hand find it quite believeable, just sad. Think about it, Josidiah promised to return with the Soldier's Blade to prove that not all of house Starym is worthless, he needed to redeem himself, his house, and prove to the Coronal that he is indeed worthy of his niece's hand.



To me, the sad part comes upon his return, not over a loss of his figurine.


Reply author: Wooly Rupert
Replied on: 25 Jan 2005 03:46:59
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by SiriusBlack

To me, the sad part comes upon his return, not over a loss of his figurine.





Yeah, there is that...


Reply author: Elven One
Replied on: 25 Jan 2005 04:25:28
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by SiriusBlack

quote:
Originally posted by Elven One
I on the other hand find it quite believeable, just sad. Think about it, Josidiah promised to return with the Soldier's Blade to prove that not all of house Starym is worthless, he needed to redeem himself, his house, and prove to the Coronal that he is indeed worthy of his niece's hand.



To me, the sad part comes upon his return, not over a loss of his figurine.





In saying that I meant it as reguarding the loss of a friend, but the part with the Coronal's niece, thats classic tragedy.


Reply author: DDH_101
Replied on: 04 Feb 2005 00:43:49
Message:

Mr. Baker, the mysterious Malkizid that is mentioned in the Forsaken House, is he the same one as the solar who was branded and thrown into the Nine Hells?

The reason I ask is because I'm looking at the Lost Empires exerpt at WotC right now and they mentioned this in the Crown Wars timeline:

-30000 The War of the Seldarine begins. Araushnee is cast down into the Demonweb Pits, where she becomes the demon-goddess Lolth. The solar Malkizid is branded and thrown down into the Nine Hells.

-10900 Malkizid, the fallen solar, becomes the secret patron of the Vyshaan lords. The Third Crown War begins. Aryvandaar, now known as the Vyshaantar Empire, invades Shantel Othreier.

-9200 The Fifth Crown War begins when the Vyshaantar Empire rebels against the proclamations of the Elven Court, which direct the elves of Aryvandaar to repudiate their Vyshaan rulers. Malkizid abandons House Vyshaan and retreats to the infernal planes.

Is this why Malkizid is allied with the daemonfey against the elves of Faerun?


Reply author: George Krashos
Replied on: 04 Feb 2005 05:18:10
Message:

Looks like the cat's out of the bag re Malkizid ...

-- George Krashos


Reply author: Sequestered
Replied on: 19 Feb 2005 02:27:18
Message:

Hello Mr. Baker! I love LEoF, it's amazing. I asked Ed Bonny on his thread this question, and George Krashos responded that you dealt with this part of the Netheril chapter. The Spell Mantle feat on p. 112 says that one can activate a hung spell as a spell-like ability; does that mean that it is not a single use magic item like the Contingent Spell feat in UE? That seems to make more sense, going back to the Mantle spell in Secrets of the Magister, but I would like to know what you think. Your time and help is greatly appreciated!
sequestered


Reply author: Ty
Replied on: 22 Feb 2005 13:53:47
Message:

Mr. Baker,

I can only say that I have been very impressed on both the Last Mythal novel and the LeoF. Superb work on both projects.

As for a question, I remember some time ago on the WotC boards you mentioned the Land of Alabaster Towers. Now, I've found the little reference in LoeF but now I'm even more curious.

Was this particular realm taken from Ed's original notes regarding the rise of Netheril? Is there more history to this place than is mentioned in LoeF? My primary reason for asking is that it appears from the text as though this land of wizards predated the rise of Netheril by some length of time and wasn't 'annexed' until the Netherese had discovered the World Serpent Skins. If that's the case, it certainly sets the stage for the possibility that there were more advanced human realms capable of unique and powerful magic in the North prior to the rise of Netheril. Thoughts? Tidbits not covered by NDA's?


Reply author: ericlboyd
Replied on: 22 Feb 2005 15:32:26
Message:

Ty,

Since I included the details about the Land of Alabaster Towers, I'll take the liberty of replying. I built this reference off a one-line toss away by Ed in Dragon #227, page 37, the article about the Athalantan Campaign. I always thought it was a shame it wasn't used in the Netheril boxed set, so I tried to weave it into Netheril's history in a way that is consistent with FR10 - Anaurouch, pages 53-54, in the write-up of Rasilith.

So, other than those to refs, this is new Realmslore.

--Eric


Reply author: shoonvii
Replied on: 05 Mar 2005 00:57:22
Message:

Mr. Baker,

*Spoiler*

Just finished Condemnation and loved it! Sorry if this has been answered elsewhere, but have we ever been clued in as to which Matron of House Faen Tlabbar was killed in Condemnation?

Are Matron Ghenni and Matron Ghenni'tiroth one and the same? Ghenni'tiroth died some 14-15 years ago in Realms time in Siege of Darkness.

I'm just curious if it was an honest mistake, and if so how would you rationalize what exactly happened as per Realms canon (might it be that it was the eldest daughter, Ghilanna, that was killed?); or if there was an off-camera explanation as to how Ghenni'tiroth rose from the dead - only to be killed again 14-15 years later.

Cheers!


Reply author: Ethriel
Replied on: 05 Mar 2005 03:39:33
Message:

That's actually something I've been wondering myself...I've figured Ghenni was Ghilana's sister or somesuch and desposed her or that Ghilana died of some other circumstances...
Also, any inspirations for the character of Nimor? I thought his whole war with Menzoberranzan was well done, especially with how it went with Horgar and Kaanyr...Zammzt too (Shame he apparantly wound back up in Ched Nasad though)
Also, Mr. Baker: Any tantalizing ints to drop us on Farthest Reach? Any chance of other old Evermeet characters making appearances (Such as Kymil Nimesin, perhaps?) And on that note, I'd love to see more of Fflar's battle with Aulmpiter in writing
I know I can't expect a straight up, specific answer, but tantalizing hints are always fun! Please keep writing because I am certainly looking forward to reading


Reply author: Rick Day
Replied on: 15 Mar 2005 16:32:10
Message:

Just wanted to say thanks for forsaken house it was a great read and felt true to the realms.


Reply author: khorne
Replied on: 19 Mar 2005 15:02:12
Message:

I just wanted to thank you for this absolutely magnificent novel, Mr Baker. Oh, and it`s good that a sun elf is the main character. I have read so much about evil and racistical sun elves that I nowadays rank them(the entire subrace)lower than zombies.
Ps. PLEASE humble house Veldann and their ilk!


Reply author: Smyther
Replied on: 23 Mar 2005 00:55:10
Message:

Finished Forsaken House a few days back - the best book I've read in a LONG time (maybe since City of Ravens).
Speaking of which, I know that the elves trilogy is supposed to be epic in scope (at least it seems that way), so might there be a possibility of a Jack Ravenwild cameo?...


Reply author: Sorenna_Melruth
Replied on: 04 Apr 2005 01:32:36
Message:

I'm wondering if Fflar is going to encounter any of his line, since his wife was pregnant with her first child when they came to Semberholme, and later on in the novel he was asked to think of his wife and babe...so there's a good possiability there are other Melruth's running around out there.


Reply author: malchor7
Replied on: 04 Apr 2005 18:45:43
Message:

And now for something completely different(!)

Mr. Baker, I asked Ed about Scyllua Darkhope, and he suggested she might have been one of your creations. Is this true and, if so, how do you pronounce her name? Ed *guessed* something like SILL-ah or SILL-oo-ah, but he would defer (DEFER, ladies and gents) to Scyllua's creator.

Enjoy your work. Keep it up! (As though you needed my encouragement )

m


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 04 Apr 2005 21:31:48
Message:

Short answer: I think I crossed up my drow matrons. It probably should have been Ghilanna. Sorry for the confusion.


quote:
Originally posted by shoonvii

Mr. Baker,

*Spoiler*

Just finished Condemnation and loved it! Sorry if this has been answered elsewhere, but have we ever been clued in as to which Matron of House Faen Tlabbar was killed in Condemnation?

Are Matron Ghenni and Matron Ghenni'tiroth one and the same? Ghenni'tiroth died some 14-15 years ago in Realms time in Siege of Darkness.

I'm just curious if it was an honest mistake, and if so how would you rationalize what exactly happened as per Realms canon (might it be that it was the eldest daughter, Ghilanna, that was killed?); or if there was an off-camera explanation as to how Ghenni'tiroth rose from the dead - only to be killed again 14-15 years later.

Cheers!


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 04 Apr 2005 21:33:08
Message:

Sorry, no plans for a Jack Ravenwild cameo. Epic struggles of elves against ancient evils seems like something he'd stay far, far away from.


quote:
Originally posted by Smyther

Finished Forsaken House a few days back - the best book I've read in a LONG time (maybe since City of Ravens).
Speaking of which, I know that the elves trilogy is supposed to be epic in scope (at least it seems that way), so might there be a possibility of a Jack Ravenwild cameo?...


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 04 Apr 2005 21:37:07
Message:

It's been a few years, but IIRC, I only contributed the most basic aspects of the character ("It'd be nice to have an important blackguard somewhere, since 3rd Ed. brings back antipaladins. Maybe she's an evil Joan of Arc.") Duane Maxwell and Sean Reynolds (I think) did most of the work on fleshing out her history and stats. I definitely remember that Duane was really stoked about the character and did some early work on her.

The good news is, you'll see a fair amount of Scyllua in The Farthest Reach. More than that I won't say right now.


quote:
Originally posted by malchor7

And now for something completely different(!)

Mr. Baker, I asked Ed about Scyllua Darkhope, and he suggested she might have been one of your creations. Is this true and, if so, how do you pronounce her name? Ed *guessed* something like SILL-ah or SILL-oo-ah, but he would defer (DEFER, ladies and gents) to Scyllua's creator.

Enjoy your work. Keep it up! (As though you needed my encouragement )

m


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 04 Apr 2005 21:38:43
Message:

Jeeze, and I forgot to answer the question. I pronounce it "sill-LOO-ah," but "skill-LOO-ah" or "SILL-oo-ah" seem OK too.


quote:
Originally posted by malchor7

And now for something completely different(!)

Mr. Baker, I asked Ed about Scyllua Darkhope, and he suggested she might have been one of your creations. Is this true and, if so, how do you pronounce her name? Ed *guessed* something like SILL-ah or SILL-oo-ah, but he would defer (DEFER, ladies and gents) to Scyllua's creator.

Enjoy your work. Keep it up! (As though you needed my encouragement )

m


Reply author: Smyther
Replied on: 04 Apr 2005 22:55:20
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by RichardBaker

Sorry, no plans for a Jack Ravenwild cameo. Epic struggles of elves against ancient evils seems like something he'd stay far, far away from.

Mmm. Didn't think so. Darn.


Reply author: Paec_djinn
Replied on: 04 Apr 2005 23:24:03
Message:

quote:
The good news is, you'll see a fair amount of Scyllua in The Farthest Reach. More than that I won't say right now.

It would be great to see the Zhents playing a role in Farthest Reach. I don't know whether she'll be on Sarya's side on not but I can see reasons why Sarya needs her. On the other hand, I also see reasons why Scyllua would be happy to fight Sarya's army.

It'll be interesting to see which side the Zhents play. (That is assuming Scyllua is plays as much as a role as I assume and she includes her army in it)


Reply author: malchor7
Replied on: 05 Apr 2005 18:16:28
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by RichardBaker

The good news is, you'll see a fair amount of Scyllua in The Farthest Reach. More than that I won't say right now.


I am SO looking forward to that one, now. YES!

m


Reply author: Prince Forge of Avalon
Replied on: 08 May 2005 05:08:32
Message:

Dear Mr Baker,

It's been months since I've been on the boards, but 1 thing I wanted to say was a BIG Thanks for The Last Mythal Series, I finshed that book in a day, and I'm really looking forward to The Farthest Reach.

It is by far one of the BEST FR Novels I've ever read!


Reply author: Snotlord
Replied on: 22 May 2005 12:44:34
Message:

Hello Rich,

I saw a discussion on the wotc boards about an rules-lite FRA-style book, and just wanted to give you my thoughts, for what it is worth.

The cities section in Forgotten Realms Adventures is IMO the single most useful 50 pages of realmslore ever published (apart from the setting books). It covers a huge area and it covers all the important stuff for using the cities as bases for adventures (colorful inns, mages for hire, local churches, a few npcs, current events). FRA can be used for a vast number of campaigns, and even if a Volo's Guide probably would be better for a specific area, I cannot imagine any FR DM who would be without an updated book on the cities of the Heartlands or the Sword Coast (or two books!).

I would like to see 20-30 cities, updated to the current timeline, a campaign journal on recent events (like in the PGtF, both from novels and otherwise) and a chapter on fully stated iconic heroes and villains from the realms.

Four pages would be sufficient to get anyone started, if you stick to the format in FRA. A single page for a really good map for each city would be wonderful. You have probably noticed that some fans are concerned about the lack of maps (gosh, I sound like a Hollywood mom), and this is a product that cannot skimp on maps. The maps in the FRA are not all that pretty, but they give a very good idea of the layout of the cities. The Silverymoon map in Silver Marches is a very good updated look on the old FRA maps, while the city maps in UE is more lacking. I hope you agree with me. A good city map is IMO essential for a city based campaign.

Hope this have given you some ideas. I really liked Forsaken House and City of Ravens. I hope you continue writing FR stuff.


Reply author: The Sage
Replied on: 22 May 2005 14:24:31
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Snotlord

...I cannot imagine any FR DM who would be without an updated book on the cities of the Heartlands or the Sword Coast (or two books!).
I'll second that. I'd prefer both, but if we had to be particular, I'd say concentrate on the Heartlands rather than the Sword Coast... we've got a Waterdeep sourcebook coming afterall and it'll probably briefly mention the current status of some of the surrounding regions of the city itself.


Reply author: Snotlord
Replied on: 22 May 2005 14:30:40
Message:

A Cities of Sea of Fallen Stars book would also be great. It would be a slight change of focus compared to the Heartlands, and include areas with little coverage like the Old Empires, the Vilhon Reach and so on...


Reply author: Prince Forge of Avalon
Replied on: 22 May 2005 21:15:10
Message:

I'd have to second the whole Sea of Fallen Stars idea also, after reading Maiden of Pain, I was really intrested in getting more info on Chessanta and it's cities.

But to be realitic I'm happy to get any regional sourcebook that they will make, can't wait for Waterdeep.


Reply author: Alaundo
Replied on: 09 Jun 2005 22:29:01
Message:

Well met

A message from Heitan34...

quote:
Richard,

I truly enjoyed "The Last Mythal" and wish you all the best in your future endeavors. I have a question regarding your opinions on the game stats of Fflar Starbrow Melruth.

You "guessed" at his stats as between 15th and 20th level....wouldn't they be a tad higher considering that he singlehandedly defeated 12 nycaloths before takig on a 21+ CR Nycaloth Commander in Aulmpiter?

As far as his classes/prestige classes, have you considered the Champion of Corellon PrC detailed in the recent D&D hardbound "Races of the Wild"? Take a look at the PrC as it really seems to fit in with Fflar's character.

I'd really like to hear more of your opinions reagrding what's shaping up to be one of the cooler characters presented in recent FR novels.


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 15 Jun 2005 23:38:25
Message:

For purposes of The Last Mythal, I decided to regard "Fall of Myth Drannor" as not always 100% accurate as far as what "really" happened in the last days of the city. Maybe Fflar got a couple of nycaloths himself, maybe he helped with a couple others, but the bards remember it as an even dozen.

RE: Champion of Corellon, well, I wrote the class! It seems like a fine fit for Fflar. I didn't mean to exclude any fighter-friendly multiclassing/prestige classes when I gave my quick quess on his class and level.

Anyway, glad you're enjoying the book!



quote:
Originally posted by Alaundo

Well met

A message from Heitan34...

quote:
Richard,

I truly enjoyed "The Last Mythal" and wish you all the best in your future endeavors. I have a question regarding your opinions on the game stats of Fflar Starbrow Melruth.

You "guessed" at his stats as between 15th and 20th level....wouldn't they be a tad higher considering that he singlehandedly defeated 12 nycaloths before takig on a 21+ CR Nycaloth Commander in Aulmpiter?

As far as his classes/prestige classes, have you considered the Champion of Corellon PrC detailed in the recent D&D hardbound "Races of the Wild"? Take a look at the PrC as it really seems to fit in with Fflar's character.

I'd really like to hear more of your opinions reagrding what's shaping up to be one of the cooler characters presented in recent FR novels.



Reply author: Paec_djinn
Replied on: 16 Jun 2005 09:55:27
Message:

Hey Richard, I just wanted to say that after reading Condemnation, my love for your work prompted me to pick up Forsaken House and City of Ravens and damn were they good! You are like one of the best FR writers IMO.

Anyway, I really liked the Game of Masks in City of Ravens. Any history on this and where it's held usually (as in whether it's held outside the Raven's Bluff area)?

Besides, I'm looking forward to reading Farthest Reach. Which reminds me, what Realms novels/short stories are you working on and how fares the final book of your Last Mythal series? Final Gate I believe.


Reply author: SiriusBlack
Replied on: 16 Jun 2005 12:15:31
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by RichardBaker

For purposes of The Last Mythal, I decided to regard "Fall of Myth Drannor" as not always 100% accurate as far as what "really" happened in the last days of the city. Maybe Fflar got a couple of nycaloths himself, maybe he helped with a couple others, but the bards remember it as an even dozen.



Funny how so many bard tales come out to round numbers like a dozen, ten, etc.

For my part, I have no problem with your decision to regard FoMD as less than entirely accurate. In my Realms, I tend to view the tales/legends of elven history as not entirely accurate as well. That decision has helped alleviate any DM tension when it comes to having to know the precise date or figure for some event and resulted in some fun moments in my own campaigns.

quote:

RE: Champion of Corellon, well, I wrote the class! It seems like a fine fit for Fflar.



No wonder I and others on here enjoyed the class.


Reply author: monch9
Replied on: 17 Jun 2005 13:01:12
Message:

Interestingly enough, out there in the WOTC boards, we have conversions to 3.5 on some of the Last Mythal characters which utilizes the latest sourcebooks. Links below for two of them.

Monch


Fflar
http://boards1.wizards.com/showpost.php?p=4281078&postcount=545

Methrammar
http://boards1.wizards.com/showpost.php?p=4786782&postcount=668

quote:
Originally posted by Alaundo

Well met

A message from Heitan34...

quote:
Richard,

I truly enjoyed "The Last Mythal" and wish you all the best in your future endeavors. I have a question regarding your opinions on the game stats of Fflar Starbrow Melruth.

You "guessed" at his stats as between 15th and 20th level....wouldn't they be a tad higher considering that he singlehandedly defeated 12 nycaloths before takig on a 21+ CR Nycaloth Commander in Aulmpiter?

As far as his classes/prestige classes, have you considered the Champion of Corellon PrC detailed in the recent D&D hardbound "Races of the Wild"? Take a look at the PrC as it really seems to fit in with Fflar's character.

I'd really like to hear more of your opinions reagrding what's shaping up to be one of the cooler characters presented in recent FR novels.



Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 22 Jun 2005 21:29:40
Message:

Glad you liked 'em!

The Game of Masks was described in the 2nd Edition "City of Raven's Bluff" sourcebook. The specific game (matching up the kings, colors, kingdoms) I thought up for the book. Every few tendays the folks who arrange the masquerade think up another "party game" to entertain everybody, or so I understood. I would expect that at least some other Realms cities might have a similar tradition.

As far as what else I'm doing these days, well, I've got a short story that will appear in Realms of the Elves, and I'm currently hard at work on Final Gate. Just getting started, really, I'm only a couple of chapters in so far.


quote:
Originally posted by Paec_djinn

Hey Richard, I just wanted to say that after reading Condemnation, my love for your work prompted me to pick up Forsaken House and City of Ravens and damn were they good! You are like one of the best FR writers IMO.

Anyway, I really liked the Game of Masks in City of Ravens. Any history on this and where it's held usually (as in whether it's held outside the Raven's Bluff area)?

Besides, I'm looking forward to reading Farthest Reach. Which reminds me, what Realms novels/short stories are you working on and how fares the final book of your Last Mythal series? Final Gate I believe.


Reply author: Crennen FaerieBane
Replied on: 22 Jun 2005 22:57:02
Message:

Hello Mr. Baker:

First things first - you do some rocking work when it comes to Faerun. My fiance's favorite book of all time is Forsaken House and she can't stop talking about when the Farthest Reach comes out. I not loved FH but Condemnation as well!! Great Job!

I do have one question though - Is it Xhalth or Xhalph and is her son or her nephew? There are two different sources (Lords of Darkness) and your book (Forsaken House). Could you clear this up for me?? Thanks! I appreciate it!!


Reply author: SiriusBlack
Replied on: 23 Jun 2005 02:08:55
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by RichardBaker
As far as what else I'm doing these days, well, I've got a short story that will appear in Realms of the Elves



Can you provide any details on what your story will feature?

Thank you in advance.

SB


Reply author: SiriusBlack
Replied on: 23 Jun 2005 02:10:25
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by CrennenFaerieBane
My fiance's favorite book of all time is Forsaken House and she can't stop talking about when the Farthest Reach comes out.



The novel is already out. Check out this thread.


Reply author: Paec_djinn
Replied on: 23 Jun 2005 08:36:42
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by RichardBaker

Glad you liked 'em!

The Game of Masks was described in the 2nd Edition "City of Raven's Bluff" sourcebook. The specific game (matching up the kings, colors, kingdoms) I thought up for the book. Every few tendays the folks who arrange the masquerade think up another "party game" to entertain everybody, or so I understood. I would expect that at least some other Realms cities might have a similar tradition.

As far as what else I'm doing these days, well, I've got a short story that will appear in Realms of the Elves, and I'm currently hard at work on Final Gate. Just getting started, really, I'm only a couple of chapters in so far.


I'm glad you chose that specific game. I love it's real life variant and it was especially great to try to solve the puzzle yourself as you read the book. Good luck with Final Gate. Can't wait to get my hands on Farthest Reach but unfortunately, where I live, the books only appear on bookstores about 4-6 months after release.


Reply author: Crennen FaerieBane
Replied on: 23 Jun 2005 16:28:09
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by SiriusBlack

quote:
Originally posted by CrennenFaerieBane
My fiance's favorite book of all time is Forsaken House and she can't stop talking about when the Farthest Reach comes out.



The novel is already out. Check out this thread.



Well, thank you much! I will have to head not only to the thread, but to the bookstore today! Thanks!

C-Fb


Reply author: Asgetrion
Replied on: 24 Jun 2005 00:40:47
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by SiriusBlack

quote:
Originally posted by CrennenFaerieBane
My fiance's favorite book of all time is Forsaken House and she can't stop talking about when the Farthest Reach comes out.



The novel is already out. Check out this thread.



Ah, hopefully I will see it in my local bookstore within the next half a year or so


Reply author: Asgetrion
Replied on: 24 Jun 2005 00:55:31
Message:

Well met, Richard!

I enjoyed 'the Forsaken House', and thus I echo the thoughts of my fellow scribes with their praises to your talent! What really amazed me was that the names of all the characters sounded very "Realmish". This is an aspect of the Realms that many authors/designers seem to be lost with, or seem to think it is not worth sweating over. My thanks for the excellent novel, and also for paying attention to details


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 24 Jun 2005 22:26:54
Message:

It's a goof on my part, but I'm not going to straighten it out in the novel series--there's just no elegant way to do it. So, my bad. If it's important in your game, pick the answer you like the best and run with it. The exact relationship isn't all that important.


quote:
Originally posted by CrennenFaerieBane

Hello Mr. Baker:

First things first - you do some rocking work when it comes to Faerun. My fiance's favorite book of all time is Forsaken House and she can't stop talking about when the Farthest Reach comes out. I not loved FH but Condemnation as well!! Great Job!

I do have one question though - Is it Xhalth or Xhalph and is her son or her nephew? There are two different sources (Lords of Darkness) and your book (Forsaken House). Could you clear this up for me?? Thanks! I appreciate it!!


Reply author: Prince Forge of Avalon
Replied on: 27 Jun 2005 02:05:47
Message:

Dear Mr Baker,

Let me take this oppurtunity to tell you THE LAST MYTHAL series is now my personal FAVORITE in all FR books, this series is an elven fanboys dream!! I finshed the Farthest Reach this very morning at 5am (considering that I read it all night cause I just couldn't put the darn thing down!). What more can I say- I loved it! I even found myself guessing certain things like what happend to Araevin that came to pass later in the book.
A few questions please***************SPOILER WARNING**************










****************************SPOILER WARNING*************************
1) what exactely did the telmiirkara neshyrr do to Araevin- did it give him the celestial template or something more?( this is the part i guessed right when you first mentioned the ceremony in the book, and by the way I'D DEFINATELY WANT TO SEE ARAEVIN STATED IN DRAGON MAGAZINE!!!!!!!!)

2) Was that Morwel in the book, how sweet!?


FINAL COMMENTS OR WISHLIST!

Hope to see you anwser the drow presence in Cormanthor, and sice your final novel will take place in the year of risen elfkin, can we hope to see the star elves dilemma resolved and a TITANIC battle to retake and rebuild the ELVEN realm of Cormanthor and Myth Drannor ONCE AND FOR ALL!!! DANG IT"S ABOUT TIME!

p.s. THANKS A WHOLE BUNCH FOR THIS SERIES AND THE MOST RECENT BOOK!!


Prince Forge of Avalon


Reply author: SiriusBlack
Replied on: 03 Jul 2005 14:31:01
Message:

The WOTC novel site has posted a author profile for Richard Baker and a sample chapter for The Farthest Reach.


Reply author: Crennen FaerieBane
Replied on: 08 Jul 2005 23:36:23
Message:

Dear Mr. Baker:

Once again, you rock. I have finished The Farthest Reach and wish I could jump ahead and see the wonderful conclusion in Final Gate. I want to also tell you Sarya is the coolest bad guy (ok, kickin' half-elf, half-demon chick) I have ever read about. I just want you to know, you have given a great background to a character (NPC) that I fell in love with in Lords of Darkness, thank you very much!!!

Oh yeah, I echo the previous 2 posts: Stats for the characters would be great, but hey, I know you're a busy man... oh yeah, Ilsevele rules as well!

C-Fb


Reply author: Laeknir
Replied on: 09 Jul 2005 03:16:59
Message:

Dear Mr. Baker:

Quick note of thanks for writing the Last Mythal Trilogy. I've read the first two books, and they are AMAZING! Definitely 10 out of 10! Keep writing, anything, and I'll keep buying!

Also, a semi-random question, possibly with a spoiler:

You've briefly mentioned Araevin's link to the elves of House Floshin, specifically Elorfindar Floshin of Daggerford. Will Elorfindar have any role (even a minor one) in book three, even in a flashback? And since Araevin appears to have some Floshin ancestry, will we learn more about how the Floshins seem to have fractured between evil (some becoming fey'ri) and good (others, like Elorfindar and his children)?


Reply author: VEDSICA
Replied on: 15 Jul 2005 20:21:43
Message:

Richard,Great work on Forsaken House and Farthest Reach.This trilogy is by far the best thing put out by anyone in a long time.Not to say that anything is bad.This is the best of the best IMO.

I am confused as to what Aeravin became at the end of Farthest Reach,and I was wondering if you can help me out on that point?Will we see Gaerradh and Methrammar again?


Reply author: jameslt0
Replied on: 22 Jul 2005 14:34:12
Message:

I only have two questions and a request.

Question: Is the Elven Retreat truely over? Is there going to be a Return to Faerun from Evermeet?

Request: A romance between Gaerradh and Methrammar Aerasume.


Reply author: The Sage
Replied on: 22 Jul 2005 15:46:00
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by jameslt0

Question: Is the Elven Retreat truely over.
The Retreat has been officially over for two game years now. The FRCS even states this on pg. 14. This was before the events detailed in Rich's novels.


Reply author: Ethriel
Replied on: 22 Jul 2005 16:25:33
Message:

Query: anything you can tell us about Final Gate? A summary? The current state of the Mythal War?

Request: More on Fflar, his duel with the Nycaloth prince and Xhalph, round 2!


Reply author: The Sage
Replied on: 23 Jul 2005 02:20:59
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Ethriel

Query: anything you can tell us about Final Gate? A summary? The current state of the Mythal War?

Request: More on Fflar, his duel with the Nycaloth prince and Xhalph, round 2!

Here's some interesting details on Final Gate, direct from Rich's interview at WotC (http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=books/fr/rbakerinterview2005) -

quote:
"The Last Mythal of Aryvandaar isn't Myth Drannor, as some folks have suggested on the message boards," he says. "It's a place called the Nexus in 2nd Edition lore." (The Nexus and the Gatekeeper's Crystal made their appearance in Forgotten Realms roleplaying game sourcebooks back in Volo's Guide to All Things Magical and Hellgate Keep.)

"The Nexus is a meeting-place of portals, a place where thousands of gates come together," Baker explains. "Step into the Nexus, and you can go anywhere you want. The doors in the Nexus are the means by which Malkizid is able to provide Sarya Dlardrageth with so many fiendish creatures for her armies. What Araevin discovers at the end of Farthest Reach is that this work of ancient Aryvandaar wasn't simply a benign construct for facilitating portal-building but instead a 'secret weapon of the Vyshaan lords,' a device intended to win the Crown Wars of 10,000 years ago. It has the potential to wreak untold destruction all across the Realms . . . and the mysterious Malkizid intends to do just that."


Reply author: Asgetrion
Replied on: 08 Aug 2005 18:58:46
Message:

Well met, mr. Baker!

I enjoyed the 'Farthest reach' very much! I do not wish to spoil anything here, so I will not refer to any names, but the corruption and blight occuring on a certain plane reminds me a lot about Moander (a sliver of his/its essence seems to remain imprisoned in Tsornyl's ruins). I wanted to ask you if this similarity between certain chapters in 'Farthest reach' and the blight and corruption of the Great Dread God are simply coincidental?


Reply author: jameslt0
Replied on: 10 Aug 2005 21:01:58
Message:

Who are the eladrin, the queen of the Court of Stars, and a high lady of the fey lords? Which source book can I find this information in?

James


Reply author: TomCosta
Replied on: 10 Aug 2005 21:28:46
Message:

The eladrin are a variety of fey-looking CG outsiders like guardinals or demons. They are found in various sourcebooks from 2E and 3E. The Court of Stars is found in the Book of Exalted Deeds.


Reply author: jameslt0
Replied on: 11 Aug 2005 19:04:08
Message:

Thanx..I was hoping for Forgotten Realms sourebook, since I have them all.

James


Reply author: The Twin Scimitars
Replied on: 21 Aug 2005 21:15:39
Message:

I just finished Condemnation for the second time I just want to say you did an excellent job Mr.Baker.


Reply author: DDH_101
Replied on: 28 Aug 2005 06:06:25
Message:

Mr. Baker, I just finished reading Farthest Reach (and it's an amazing novel btw) and I have a question.

In the novel (I forgot the exact pages), you mentioned that the Sage of Shadowdale and the Knights of Myth Drannor are away on some far plane on a matter of importance concerning the Shrinshee.

Now, is this just a ploy to avoid having one of the most powerful wizards in the Realms be involved in the conflict or are you perhaps revealing the plot for the series about the Knights of Myth Drannor that Ed Greenwood is going to write?

I remember in Troy Denning's Return of the Archwizard series, Elminster goes to Hell to seal the rift that opened after his fight with the Princes of Shade, which then sets the premise for Elminster in Hell.


Reply author: Kuje
Replied on: 28 Aug 2005 07:04:19
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by DDH_101

Mr. Baker, I just finished reading Farthest Reach (and it's an amazing novel btw) and I have a question.

In the novel (I forgot the exact pages), you mentioned that the Sage of Shadowdale and the Knights of Myth Drannor are away on some far plane on a matter of importance concerning the Shrinshee.

Now, is this just a ploy to avoid having one of the most powerful wizards in the Realms be involved in the conflict or are you perhaps revealing the plot for the series about the Knights of Myth Drannor that Ed Greenwood is going to write?

I remember in Troy Denning's Return of the Archwizard series, Elminster goes to Hell to seal the rift that opened after his fight with the Princes of Shade, which then sets the premise for Elminster in Hell.



THO and Ed have answered this in the past. It'll be explained in the upcoming elven anthology with a tale Ed is writing. :)


Reply author: El Magnifico Uno
Replied on: 08 Sep 2005 06:27:50
Message:

Just finished Forsaken House and Farthest Reach... That is some darn good writing there Mr Baker!!... Normally I have a fairly low opinion of the writing quality of FR books, but you sir, are damn good!!.. Great use of vocabulary! Characters with depth! Elves that seem, well, like elves! and not just humans with pointy ears!... Definitely hands down "the best Realms book to date" to paraphrase Mr. Greenwood...

Questions -
1) Were you required by your illustrious editors to use "X" number of battle scenes?... They seemed a bit tedious after awhile...
2) What was up with the "recycling cleric"? Every few chapters they get a new cleric... Reminds me of old PnP games where a player would change characters every session, but each one was just a new rendition of the last...


Reply author: Wooly Rupert
Replied on: 22 Sep 2005 00:47:41
Message:

Moved here at JK's request:

quote:
Originally posted by Jamallo Kreen

Well met!

Where may I find more details of the disappearance in 1244 (Year of the Defiant Keep) of Elphras and his folk from his keep near the Great Barrow?


Reply author: George Krashos
Replied on: 22 Sep 2005 01:57:58
Message:

Well, I'm not Rich but in 'my' Realms, Elphras was a prince of Impiltur: specifically the fifth son (and a twin) of King Imphras II by his second wife. As to what happened to him, well that's something for you to have fun with I think.

-- George Krashos


Reply author: Beirnadri Magranth
Replied on: 02 Oct 2005 00:47:02
Message:

MR BAKER!


anything i say might be a spoiler but youd be spoiled anyway to read such a great book


I just read your book bc im sick but what an amazing book. it has soo much flavor! I loved the fflar character and his experience with why he came back! and I love the tragic scene with brant at the wizard tower in the forest of wyrms!
1- the character of brant i found so heroic and tragic
2- I love the part about finding the trap in the stone by sensing the grooves etc. that was really well described and i could almost feel the grooves.
3- I love how you had Aerivan fire through the window and race down to the next one. that was really a thrilling moment and very true to the experience of being in a d&d campaign.
4- i thought it was interesting how similarly you write for drow and elves. the dissension in the court of evermeet very much reminded me of the council of matrons in menzobearanzan. alot of the tension has imilar elements as your book condemnation
5- the part about the wood elves didnt seem to be very much related to the rest of what was happening... and i was wondering, are you going to make them more prominent in the other novels? right now it seems like they are two stories told at once
6- i only recently found out who malkizid was! hehe im very eager to read on


Reply author: Beirnadri Magranth
Replied on: 02 Oct 2005 01:02:36
Message:


matron ghenni was probably resurrected. it should come as no surprise that a powerful noble matron would be revived.... there are those spells for a reason



quote:
Originally posted by shoonvii

Mr. Baker,

*Spoiler*

Just finished Condemnation and loved it! Sorry if this has been answered elsewhere, but have we ever been clued in as to which Matron of House Faen Tlabbar was killed in Condemnation?

Are Matron Ghenni and Matron Ghenni'tiroth one and the same? Ghenni'tiroth died some 14-15 years ago in Realms time in Siege of Darkness.

I'm just curious if it was an honest mistake, and if so how would you rationalize what exactly happened as per Realms canon (might it be that it was the eldest daughter, Ghilanna, that was killed?); or if there was an off-camera explanation as to how Ghenni'tiroth rose from the dead - only to be killed again 14-15 years later.

Cheers!


Reply author: Crennen FaerieBane
Replied on: 02 Oct 2005 02:18:55
Message:

Yeah, the only thing to consider is that Lolth isn't too keen to let her souls go back to the Realms...

C-Fb


Reply author: Paec_djinn
Replied on: 02 Oct 2005 05:36:57
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Beirnadri Magranth


anything i say might be a spoiler but youd be spoiled anyway to read such a great book


Just a request that you mark the spoilers more clearly. I for example, haven't read Farthest Reach yet but I frequent this thread just in case Mr. Baker answers a question to other novels I've read. But it would please me if you still mark spoilers. Thanks.


Reply author: Wooly Rupert
Replied on: 02 Oct 2005 06:26:06
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by CrennenFaerieBane

Yeah, the only thing to consider is that Lolth isn't too keen to let her souls go back to the Realms...

C-Fb



Not only that, but the death of a Matron means someone else gets promoted. What drow would willingly bring back someone of higher rank than them? Or a potential rival?

Yeah, I can see it happening, but it would have to be something seriously extreme -- such as, your entire House is about to be annihilated, and only this one dead drow can successfully win the upcoming battle.


Reply author: Baalster
Replied on: 02 Oct 2005 09:16:27
Message:

Richard,

*looks up on a vast collection of books, makes room on the prominent shelf and put up two tomes, just recently read, titled "Forsaken House" and "Farthest Reach"*

It's not often I'm lost for words reading a book, but having read "Forsaken House" all I could do while waiting for the next book to be available here in Norway, was to read it again. This time with my notebook handy. Seldom have I gotten so much out of a Realms novel. Your detailed writing style is a blessing for us devourers of Realmslore. Touching on topics that obviously seem to interest alot of scribes is also a bonus. It is a shame that we will wait for the conclusion ... but it will give us time to read the two first books again. :)

My thanks for researching and writing the book. Kudos for the details, for the character gallery, the history and the great storyline.

A question regarding mythals. My corner of the Realms is Whitehorn, just south of the White Peaks. Home of Myth Ondath, the mythal that was destroyed by the Ice Queen using the Gatekeeper Crystal (Volo's guide to all things magical). The question is : what would remain of the mythal after it is destroyed ? Would it be possible to revitalize it using high-magic ? Preciously little is known about Myth Ondath except a brief mention in the elven timeline in Cormanthyr - Empire of the Elves. Another "black hole" is Rystall Wood, which I understand is an outside group that chose to distant themselves. Any information would be highly appreciated.

Baalster
DM of Whitehorn
A server in ALFA (A Land Far Away persistent world)
http://www.alandfaraway.org


Reply author: Brom Greenstar
Replied on: 03 Oct 2005 12:21:53
Message:

just wanted to say happy birthday! (late)


Reply author: Crennen FaerieBane
Replied on: 03 Oct 2005 23:20:32
Message:

Happy Birthday!! I just saw the post on the WotC board!

C-Fb


Reply author: khorne
Replied on: 04 Oct 2005 13:03:22
Message:

Happy birthday.


Reply author: Paec_djinn
Replied on: 04 Oct 2005 13:32:59
Message:

Hmm.. pardon my ignorance (and the fact that I don't visit the Wizard's boards) but when is Mr Baker's birthday and how old is he again?

And to him: Happy Birthday!


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 25 Oct 2005 20:47:29
Message:

Sorry that I haven't been frequenting the boards lately. I've been super-busy with a "crash" project at work, plus I've been scrambling to finish up the first draft of "Final Gate" at home. Oh, and Wizards of the Coast is moving offices at the end of this week--just across the street to another Renton office building, but still, one more thing to stay on top of.

I'm glad you liked the first two-thirds of Last Mythal; hope the last one doesn't disappoint!

Regarding Myth Ondath, there are two possibilities:

a) the Gatekeeper Crystal's "implode magic" function was used, in which case the place would have been largely flattened, sort of like Hellgate Keep. Doubtless many buried cellars, strongholds, vaults, and other subterranean or outlying features still survive.

b) the Crystal' "remove barriers/give me access" function was used, in which case the city might have survived reasonably intact, only to be pillaged and burned by a horde within days of the mythal's failure. More surface features would have survived.

As for what was in the city itself, heck, anything I say would be pure speculation. Beyond what little is said in the Cormanthyr timeline, I sort of favor the idea of a "wizard's city," a hidden city like some of the high, remote monastery/cities of Tibet. Mystical, remote, secretive, but not evil. However, I don't have Empire of the Elves close at hand, and I can't get at it because it's already packed up, so I have no idea if that would fit the little bit that was said in that book.



quote:
Originally posted by Baalster

Richard,

*looks up on a vast collection of books, makes room on the prominent shelf and put up two tomes, just recently read, titled "Forsaken House" and "Farthest Reach"*

It's not often I'm lost for words reading a book, but having read "Forsaken House" all I could do while waiting for the next book to be available here in Norway, was to read it again. This time with my notebook handy. Seldom have I gotten so much out of a Realms novel. Your detailed writing style is a blessing for us devourers of Realmslore. Touching on topics that obviously seem to interest alot of scribes is also a bonus. It is a shame that we will wait for the conclusion ... but it will give us time to read the two first books again. :)

My thanks for researching and writing the book. Kudos for the details, for the character gallery, the history and the great storyline.

A question regarding mythals. My corner of the Realms is Whitehorn, just south of the White Peaks. Home of Myth Ondath, the mythal that was destroyed by the Ice Queen using the Gatekeeper Crystal (Volo's guide to all things magical). The question is : what would remain of the mythal after it is destroyed ? Would it be possible to revitalize it using high-magic ? Preciously little is known about Myth Ondath except a brief mention in the elven timeline in Cormanthyr - Empire of the Elves. Another "black hole" is Rystall Wood, which I understand is an outside group that chose to distant themselves. Any information would be highly appreciated.

Baalster
DM of Whitehorn
A server in ALFA (A Land Far Away persistent world)
http://www.alandfaraway.org


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 25 Oct 2005 20:55:20
Message:

I'm a military buff, so I wanted to show the progress of the campaigns--and also show a little of what warfare in the D&D world probably looks like.

RE: Grayth, Filsaelene, Donnor, I simply wanted to keep the readers on their toes by not creating an "unchangeable" lineup of characters around Araevin. I thought it would be a little more, well, realistic if the supporting cast evolved over time. But now that I look back on it, I sure see how it came off a little different from what I intended. Guess I'll know better next time.



quote:
Originally posted by El Magnifico Uno

Just finished Forsaken House and Farthest Reach... That is some darn good writing there Mr Baker!!... Normally I have a fairly low opinion of the writing quality of FR books, but you sir, are damn good!!.. Great use of vocabulary! Characters with depth! Elves that seem, well, like elves! and not just humans with pointy ears!... Definitely hands down "the best Realms book to date" to paraphrase Mr. Greenwood...

Questions -
1) Were you required by your illustrious editors to use "X" number of battle scenes?... They seemed a bit tedious after awhile...
2) What was up with the "recycling cleric"? Every few chapters they get a new cleric... Reminds me of old PnP games where a player would change characters every session, but each one was just a new rendition of the last...


Reply author: Dargoth
Replied on: 13 Jan 2006 04:44:14
Message:

Rich

Any chance you could post the Power of Faerun contents page (either here or over at WOTC) Mat Smith didnt give us much in january and beyond.......


Reply author: Octa
Replied on: 18 Jan 2006 04:21:09
Message:

Rich- How has the monster population of Myth Drannor changed since 1356 when Elminster revealed its secrets?

Controlled mainly by the Phaenrim from 1356 to 1372?

A net flow of treasure in, and with its hoards richer than ever since most adventurers who enter perish before they can run off with some elven loot?

What is the status of the church of Lathander in the Ruins. Am I remembering it right that they are killed off by the shades right, so their temple survives until 1372, or did the Fey-ri do them in?

The knights of the Shadow Sword are there and keeping a low profile to avoid being overrun by the Phaenrim I would assume.

So am I guessing right that the Shades putting the Phaenrim to the sword, would really open up the Ruins and that it is that event that has made Myth Drannor viable for the drow and Fey-ri?

Any musings you have on the subject would be greatly appreciated.


Reply author: Aulnil
Replied on: 18 Jan 2006 15:37:00
Message:

Rich, absolutely loving The Last Mythal series. The Farthest Reach is quite an endeavor. Thanks. I had just a few questions. Spoilers, sorry














The creatures invading Sildeyuir; are they described in more game-use detail anywhere as yet? And, by the writings in Cloak and Dagger, Mulmaster is essentially under Zhentarim control and Manshoon has returned to the organization in some regard. Is there any particular reason the forces of Mulmaster and Manshoon aren't involved in The Farthest Reach, or did you just feel it added to many elements to an already very thick tapestry? Appreciate any thoughts you might have.

Aulnil




Reply author: Kajehase
Replied on: 18 Jan 2006 16:26:12
Message:

Aulnil, the Nilshai are detailed on page 67-68 in Unapproachable East.


Reply author: Wooly Rupert
Replied on: 18 Jan 2006 17:26:17
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Octa

What is the status of the church of Lathander in the Ruins. Am I remembering it right that they are killed off by the shades right, so their temple survives until 1372, or did the Fey-ri do them in?


I, personally, was a bit confused by the mention of a temple to Lathander within the ruins of Myth Drannor. The novel seems to say that the temple was indeed inside the city, but I know of no such temple. The Dawnspire, the nearby temple of Lathander, was described as laying a distance outside the city, at least in the Ruins of Myth Drannor boxed set. The Sage Advice column in Dragon 208 offered the following suggestion for the locale:

quote:
Karen and I suggest placing the temple in the Westfields area, just south of the Burial Glen (see the Campaign Guide to Myth Drannor, page 15.)


Reply author: Kuje
Replied on: 18 Jan 2006 18:16:54
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by Octa

What is the status of the church of Lathander in the Ruins. Am I remembering it right that they are killed off by the shades right, so their temple survives until 1372, or did the Fey-ri do them in?


I, personally, was a bit confused by the mention of a temple to Lathander within the ruins of Myth Drannor. The novel seems to say that the temple was indeed inside the city, but I know of no such temple. The Dawnspire, the nearby temple of Lathander, was described as laying a distance outside the city, at least in the Ruins of Myth Drannor boxed set. The Sage Advice column in Dragon 208 offered the following suggestion for the locale:

quote:
Karen and I suggest placing the temple in the Westfields area, just south of the Burial Glen (see the Campaign Guide to Myth Drannor, page 15.)




And when we discussed it with Ed, in 2004?, he confirmed that it was indeed outside of the city. His reply is in my files. :)


Reply author: Octa
Replied on: 18 Jan 2006 19:58:42
Message:

I thought that right outside the city made sense, but the Ruins Boxed set never said where it was which was pretty vexing to me. Of course it can't be too far away though because it is certainly within the Mythal which I think only stretches out like 100 feet/yards or so from the edges of the city.

Kuje, are there many answers from Ed on Myth Drannor in your FAQs? Well I guess with modern technology it won't take long to search them.

Wooley- Which book was the part about the temple being destroyed in? Was it the Return of the Archwizards or the Farthest Reach.

The Shades clearing out the Phaenrim was the one thing that no set of adventurers would ever be able to do, and opens up the opportunity for anyone to take the place over. I'm guessing that as soon as the Shades leave there is a huge influx of adventurers the size of the influx right after the retreat from Cormanthyr.


Reply author: Kuje
Replied on: 18 Jan 2006 20:10:42
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Octa

Kuje, are there many answers from Ed on Myth Drannor in your FAQs? Well I guess with modern technology it won't take long to search them.


At least a hundred. :) Use the table of contents for each year as a starting point. :)

And the temple being destroyed is mentioned in book 2 of the Last Mythal trilogy.


Reply author: Wooly Rupert
Replied on: 18 Jan 2006 23:08:50
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Kuje



And when we discussed it with Ed, in 2004?, he confirmed that it was indeed outside of the city. His reply is in my files. :)



Have you a specific reference for that? I just searched, and couldn't find it...


Reply author: Octa
Replied on: 19 Jan 2006 23:09:38
Message:

Hey how far out does the Mythal stretch, just past burial glade right.

How about putting the Temple on that Island in the middle of the pond/lake on the southern side of the city??


Reply author: Kuje
Replied on: 19 Jan 2006 23:21:39
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by Kuje



And when we discussed it with Ed, in 2004?, he confirmed that it was indeed outside of the city. His reply is in my files. :)



Have you a specific reference for that? I just searched, and couldn't find it...



It was a passing reference from Ed on March 25th, 2004. Sec, I'll find what I said, since Ed agreed with me. :)

"Wooly and I went over this a few weeks back. :) This is what we figured out.

Also according to Candlekeep's Errata entry it says this:

11. Ruins of Myth Drannor

courtesy Sascha Kriewel < sascha.kriewel@home.ins.de >

The temple of Lathander wasn't marked on the maps, nor does the book give a clear location. Semi-official suggestion from 'The Sage': place the temple in the Westfields area, just south of the Burial Glen.

The Sage said in Dragon #208 in the Sage Advice column:

Where within Myth Drannor is The Dawnspire (the temple of Lathander)? I've looked through the book twice and I can't find a clue. I know the site is supposed to cover about five acres, but there's no scale on the map. Is that an oversight?

TSR's Karen Boomgarden and I also spent a great deal of time poring over the book and the Myth Drannor maps trying to find the answer to this one. (The floor in Karen's cubical is just about large enough to accommodate all the maps at once. An onlooker would have had a grand time watching the two of us trying to study the maps without soiling or tearing them with our shoes.) Karen and I suggest placing the temple in the Westfields area, just south of the Burial Glen (see the Campaign Guide to Myth Drannor, page 15.)

There isn't supposed to be a scale printed on the maps. Myth Drannor's Mythal, see the Campaign Guide to Myth Drannor pages 22-31) and the corrupting influences of all the gates and wild magic make all distances within the ruins distorted and variable."

Ed said on March 25, 2004, "Damian, Kuje has got it right re. Dawnspire."


Reply author: Wooly Rupert
Replied on: 20 Jan 2006 03:53:10
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Kuje

Ed said on March 25, 2004, "Damian, Kuje has got it right re. Dawnspire."



Ah... I found Ed's reply, but the lack of a question with it made it difficult to know what it was referring to.


Reply author: Kuje
Replied on: 20 Jan 2006 04:56:35
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by Kuje

Ed said on March 25, 2004, "Damian, Kuje has got it right re. Dawnspire."



Ah... I found Ed's reply, but the lack of a question with it made it difficult to know what it was referring to.



This is why I use my table of contents. :)


Reply author: Beirnadri Magranth
Replied on: 01 Feb 2006 19:11:07
Message:

SPOILERS for farthest reach/last mythal series
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near the end of the Farthest Reach Aeravin defeats Saelethil's spirit which lingered in the High Mage's selukirra (sp?). He then gains access to the epic magic stored within. He learns alot of the selukiira's lore by reading golden scrolls. Could these scrolls he read be scrolls of the golden skins of the world serpent?

I figured since the GSotWS were created by the Ba'etith a bajillion years ago in the Hall of Mists and the next tale of their surfacing was when they were discovered by finder in the cellars of the Citadel of the Mists, that the elves of the high forest had found the skins...
I think Saelethil read the scrolls while he was active with house dlardrageth (seeing as they were alter found within their secret armories). Saelethil, i suppose, then stored the valuable knowledge in his selukiira which was gleaned by Aeravin after he defeated the Dalrdrageth high mage.

please
tell me if im completely off or if this is reasonable speculation.
THNX


Reply author: Hoondatha
Replied on: 07 Feb 2006 01:08:35
Message:

I rather doubt it. I think it was just imagery created by Saelethil. Remember, the kiira was essentially a part of him, so everything is a metaphor, and the world's iconography was entirely his to create. And he was a gold elf, so it would make sense for him to color the "scrolls" that held (to him) the height of gold elven magic at color.


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 16 Feb 2006 17:32:22
Message:

I viewed it as a metaphor -- not the Nether Scrolls, not the scales of the World Serpent. Sort of like the desktop icon you choose to represent files on your PC.


quote:
Originally posted by Hoondatha

I rather doubt it. I think it was just imagery created by Saelethil. Remember, the kiira was essentially a part of him, so everything is a metaphor, and the world's iconography was entirely his to create. And he was a gold elf, so it would make sense for him to color the "scrolls" that held (to him) the height of gold elven magic at color.


Reply author: Beirnadri Magranth
Replied on: 16 Feb 2006 18:21:53
Message:

ok.. :/ i really liked that character btw!
goodjob with Saelethil
he was perfectly condescending and evil


Reply author: dannyfu
Replied on: 26 Feb 2006 16:34:30
Message:

hi Richard, i'm a huge fan of the last mythal series and have been discussing it and defending it regularly since i recently joined the candlekeep forums. it seems to me that "final gate" has a lot of issues to tackle and unless its 500+ pages i imagine some things will be left open, so i was wondering if you would be taking on a new series after this involving characters from the last mythal books? i think you have handled the elves in the realms wonderfully and i would really love to see you continue to write about the Returning or whatever you and the realms have in store for my favorite race. thanks Rich, i cannot wait to read "final gate"!


Reply author: dannyfu
Replied on: 02 Mar 2006 16:11:17
Message:

since i am the last post i thought i would add: for the love of the elven pantheon, please......do not kill off fflar!!


Reply author: Aulnil
Replied on: 14 Mar 2006 20:26:02
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Aulnil

Rich, absolutely loving The Last Mythal series. The Farthest Reach is quite an endeavor. Thanks. I had just a few questions. Spoilers, sorry














The creatures invading Sildeyuir; are they described in more game-use detail anywhere as yet? And, by the writings in Cloak and Dagger, Mulmaster is essentially under Zhentarim control and Manshoon has returned to the organization in some regard. Is there any particular reason the forces of Mulmaster and Manshoon aren't involved in The Farthest Reach, or did you just feel it added to many elements to an already very thick tapestry? Appreciate any thoughts you might have.

Aulnil






Reply author: Kuje
Replied on: 14 Mar 2006 20:45:10
Message:

Aulnil,

Unapproachable East has the info you need about the creatures invading Sildeyuir. That was the only sourcebook that has info on that land and the star elves, etc.


Reply author: Aulnil
Replied on: 18 Mar 2006 23:38:57
Message:

Thanks got the info on the creatures a few months back, but reposted for the remaining info just out of curiosity and forgot to edit the original post. Thx to all responding.


Reply author: Waldham
Replied on: 13 Apr 2006 16:38:48
Message:

Hello , Mister Richard Baker

I have a question about the illithid tamer PrC in Underdark with illithid-kin racial requirement.

If a character has the feats : illithid heritage and illithid grapple(described in Complete Psionic), can the character become a illithid tamer ?

Thanks for your future answer.


Reply author: Skeptic
Replied on: 19 May 2006 00:11:58
Message:

Hi, do you remember why Zokir (beholder city where the famous elder orb Vaxall comes from) was not mentioned in 3E Underdark ?

It was described in great details in Drizz't Guide to Underdark and I was surprised to find not even a small blurb / site on map.


Reply author: Brian R. James
Replied on: 16 Jul 2006 04:17:41
Message:

Thank you Rich. The Last Mythal Trilogy was a fun read. I was treated to a fantastic lore packed adventure spanning the breadth of Faerūn, the Underdark, and beyond. I haven't enjoyed a realms trilogy this much in years. I eagerly look forward to hearing about your next projects.


Reply author: Wooly Rupert
Replied on: 18 Jul 2006 04:36:59
Message:

A quick question, Rich, about the ship of Evermeet that Amlaruil used to visit Seveiril. It has been suggested that it is a spelljammer, though I'm more inclined to think it's a special kind of flying ship that is tied to moonlight. Can you offer more clarification on what, exactly, it is?


Reply author: Purple Dragon Knight
Replied on: 19 Jul 2006 04:30:23
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

A quick question, Rich, about the ship of Evermeet that Amlaruil used to visit Seveiril. It has been suggested that it is a spelljammer, though I'm more inclined to think it's a special kind of flying ship that is tied to moonlight. Can you offer more clarification on what, exactly, it is?

Oh, Wooly... you know he's giving us a 'silent sneak peak'... don't go and force his NDA hand 'just like that'... be more hamsterish in your inquisitions I say!


Reply author: Naeryndam
Replied on: 27 Jul 2006 02:28:12
Message:

Mr. Baker,

What became of Malkizid at the end of The Last Myth Drannor series? Also how did Malkizid know ELVEN mythal spells?

Those questions aside, I absolutely loved The Last Mythal trilogy and thought that it was a great relief from the standard "retreating, weakening, and vanishing elves of Faerun" view. Is it possible that Araevin will be featured in another novel?

Thank you for your time in answering these questions.


Reply author: The Simbul
Replied on: 28 Jul 2006 08:06:28
Message:

So I finished the final part of The Last Mythal trilogy about seven minutes ago--
Amazing.

I especially liked the Epilogue. Please make an effort to drop a mention here and there of important events, timeline, and noteworthy characters in FR gaming products...I'm sure you will, but I just wanted to add the emphasis, because nothing irks me more than when important novel events get missed in timeline/regional information entries, etc.


Reply author: dannyfu
Replied on: 31 Jul 2006 05:55:08
Message:

Just wanted to drop a quick message and thank you for the Final Gate. I could not have been happier with the outcome of this novel. I realize that this was a huge task and I think that you pulled it all together quite well. I look foward to seeing what future holds for our "new couple" and for a RPG source book to accompany the events of this novel.
The only thing I'm going to have to disagree with you on is that I think my NY Mets are going to take it this year . Seriously though, from a newer FR fan who has read a good amount of realms classics, the Last Mythal trilogy is my favorite. thanks.


Reply author: Rinonalyrna Fathomlin
Replied on: 02 Aug 2006 03:10:52
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by dannyfu

The only thing I'm going to have to disagree with you on is that I think my NY Mets are going to take it this year .



Or the Yankees.


Reply author: Dargoth
Replied on: 02 Aug 2006 09:12:30
Message:

Hey Rich what are the new classes in Tome of Battle like? (particularly interested in the Crusader class)


Reply author: Naeryndam
Replied on: 02 Aug 2006 17:08:19
Message:

who cares about the mets, forza italia!

ahem...back on topic, what is this tome of battle supposed to be like?


Reply author: Aes Tryl
Replied on: 08 Aug 2006 13:31:56
Message:

Ummm Mr.Baker, i was wondering where else is the Pale Sybil mentioned? and if she isn't, could u give a brief introduction of this weirdly cool, magic sucking character


Reply author: Corran Horn
Replied on: 13 Aug 2006 21:56:29
Message:

Hello Mr. Baker!
I have some questions to you about LM series.
I havent read The Last Mythal series yet but unfortunately i heard some spoilers about it. I heard that in LM trilogy Grand Mage of Evermeet is Breithel Olithir. I feel little confused because in novel Evermeet and in sourcebook Evermeet Grand Mage of Evermeet was Laeroth Runemaster. So I'm asking what happened to Laeroth and why you have decided to make Breithel Olithir Grand Mage?
My second question is how powerfull is Breithel Olithir? How many levels he has?
My last question is about characters from LM trilogy. Will they be described somewhere?
In some new sourcebook or in WotC web site or elsewhere?

Sorry for my englisch.


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 15 Aug 2006 20:45:44
Message:

Sorry for the late answer; I've been on vacation for the last 3+ weeks.

I imagined the ship as an enchanted seagoing vessel, not a spelljammer. I didn't really have any particular magical properties in mind, other than the idea that the ship could travel great distances in a short time by sailing on moonlit water. I don't think it was really a "teleport ship" effect as much as it would be a sort of "shadow walk" effect based on sailing in moonlight... someone aboard the ship would perceive dimly the lands/seas they were passing over/through, and it wouldn't be instantaneous.

Hope that helps!


quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

A quick question, Rich, about the ship of Evermeet that Amlaruil used to visit Seveiril. It has been suggested that it is a spelljammer, though I'm more inclined to think it's a special kind of flying ship that is tied to moonlight. Can you offer more clarification on what, exactly, it is?


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 15 Aug 2006 20:51:55
Message:

I created the Pale Sybil for the story; she isn't mentioned anywhere else. However, a couple of the key components behind the Sybil appear in the FR sourcebook "Underdark," which I worked on extensively. For example, the abyss known as Lorosfyr is a place I created for that book. Bruce Cordell invented the Deep Imaskari, and I riffed on that by positing that a Deep Imaskari "sister city" might have been the cause of the mysterious ruins and terrible stairs found in the abyss.

When working on that part of Final Gate, I decided to put on my "A. Merritt" hat. Merritt wrote a number of stories about people going into fantastic hidden lands and worlds and confronting horrendous, inhuman evil; for example, "The Moon Pool," "The Metal Monster," "Dwellers in the Mirage," or "The People of the Pit." I like to pay homage to the Golden Age masters when I can. Lorosfyr and the Pale Sybil didn't fall far from the tree.


quote:
Originally posted by Aes Tryl

Ummm Mr.Baker, i was wondering where else is the Pale Sybil mentioned? and if she isn't, could u give a brief introduction of this weirdly cool, magic sucking character


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 15 Aug 2006 20:55:43
Message:

Remember, some years pass between the end of the novel "Evermeet" and the beginning of "The Last Mythal." It's not a lot of time, but it's enough for the previous Grand Mage to head off for Arvandor and a new guy to step in. I don't know how tough Olithir is off the top of my head; for my purposes it was sufficient for him to be a relatively new and untried Grand Mage, so I suppose he's got to be in the mid-20's or they wouldn't have given him the job.

I don't have any plans to write up character stats for the Last Mythal folks anytime soon; I have other things on my plate for now.


quote:
Originally posted by Corran Horn

Hello Mr. Baker!
I have some questions to you about LM series.
I havent read The Last Mythal series yet but unfortunately i heard some spoilers about it. I heard that in LM trilogy Grand Mage of Evermeet is Breithel Olithir. I feel little confused because in novel Evermeet and in sourcebook Evermeet Grand Mage of Evermeet was Laeroth Runemaster. So I'm asking what happened to Laeroth and why you have decided to make Breithel Olithir Grand Mage?
My second question is how powerfull is Breithel Olithir? How many levels he has?
My last question is about characters from LM trilogy. Will they be described somewhere?
In some new sourcebook or in WotC web site or elsewhere?

Sorry for my englisch.



Reply author: Wooly Rupert
Replied on: 15 Aug 2006 23:02:16
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by RichardBaker

Sorry for the late answer; I've been on vacation for the last 3+ weeks.

I imagined the ship as an enchanted seagoing vessel, not a spelljammer. I didn't really have any particular magical properties in mind, other than the idea that the ship could travel great distances in a short time by sailing on moonlit water. I don't think it was really a "teleport ship" effect as much as it would be a sort of "shadow walk" effect based on sailing in moonlight... someone aboard the ship would perceive dimly the lands/seas they were passing over/through, and it wouldn't be instantaneous.

Hope that helps!


quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

A quick question, Rich, about the ship of Evermeet that Amlaruil used to visit Seveiril. It has been suggested that it is a spelljammer, though I'm more inclined to think it's a special kind of flying ship that is tied to moonlight. Can you offer more clarification on what, exactly, it is?





Hey, thanks for the answer! That's pretty much what I figured it was, but I wanted to know for sure.


Reply author: Aes Tryl
Replied on: 16 Aug 2006 04:12:08
Message:

Thanks for the answer Mr Baker, the concept sounds real cool. So will we be seeing her officially statted out?


Reply author: Corran Horn
Replied on: 16 Aug 2006 20:29:59
Message:

Thanks for answers Mr. Baker but i have one more question. We can see in Lost Empires of Faerun that the leader of Cearlicarn is Lady Morgwais. Who is she? I mean is she druid or sorcerer or someone else? And how powerfull is she? How many levels she has?


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 16 Aug 2006 20:42:26
Message:

If I'm thinking of the right character, she first appeared in Troy Denning's "Return of the Archwizards" series. She was Galaeron's mother, and an important wood elf leader. I picked her up to be the leader of the High Forest wood elves in "Forsaken House." I assumed she was reasonably competent, but she's no Grand Mage. (It was never really important in my story to know exactly what she could or couldn't do, so I didn't make any assumptions about her game stats.) Maybe she's about a 10th-level wizard with a level or two of druid thrown in?


quote:
Originally posted by Corran Horn

Thanks for answers Mr. Baker but i have one more question. We can see in Lost Empires of Faerun that the leader of Cearlicarn is Lady Morgwais. Who is she? I mean is she druid or sorcerer or someone else? And how powerfull is she? How many levels she has?


Reply author: Sanishiver
Replied on: 17 Aug 2006 07:59:15
Message:

Hello Rich,

Can you give us scribes here at Candlekeep some suggestions or guidelines for how to write and structure customer feedback about the Realms, for the purpose of sending it in to Wizards of the Coast?

I understand as a rule all feedback is important, but am also certain (based on my own professional experience) that why and how feedback is written can make a great deal of difference as to whether it’s fully read and understood.

Could you please advise if hand-written letters are better/worse than sending email, and also if it’s appropriate to request a reply of some sort? If it’s not too much to ask, can you also advise if feedback is ranked at all? That is, if some customer correspondence is obviously rules related as opposed to setting/lore related, does that automatically rank higher in priority to read or perhaps cause the feedback to be sorted into different ‘piles’ for review by different departments later?

Thanks as always!

J. Grenemyer


Reply author: Corran Horn
Replied on: 17 Aug 2006 13:42:03
Message:

Thanks for answer Mr. Baker.


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 17 Aug 2006 21:44:04
Message:

Hmmm... well, to start, I'd suggest typed rather than handwritten correspondence. (Of course, word processor and printer are just as good as a typewriter, 'cause who the heck has a typewriter anymore?)

If you're asking a rules question, we'd prefer it if you tried our Customer Service folks first. You can call or email them (see the title page of any FR sourcebook) and you'll get an answer fast. I will field CS-type questions when people send them my way, but the CS folks keep records of the questions they're asked and the answers provided. That gives us a company-wide history of which questions are asked about which products, whereas if you just post a question on the message boards or email a random game designer at WotC that information isn't preserved.

If you would like to offer a suggestion or make a complaint, you have three good choices. You can post it in a public forum we keep an eye on (the appropriate wizards.com message board), you can email someone at WotC, or you can send snail mail. If you want to be sure that we see it, I recommend sending your suggestion straight to *someone* rather than just posting on a board -- it's hard to sort out the signal-from-noise in a message board, after all. If you contact us via snail mail, just add "Attn: Rich Baker" in the address line, and the letter will be delivered to me. Good people to talk to here at Wotc include me; Chris Perkins, the design manager; Bill Slavicsek, director of RPG R&D; or Liz Schuh, who heads up our RPG business team.

Email sent straight to one of the above folks is OK, too -- but I'd ask that you save it for serious correspondence. We like to hear from you, but I know in my own case that I wouldn't want to feel like I ought to reply to a dozen customer emails a day.

Finally, regardless of the format you choose, I'd ask that you try to be concise, polite, and direct. Short, well-organized messages are much easier to digest than long, indirect, rambling ones. Stay on message, and seriously, try to be civil even when you're angry about something. Nothing puts my hackles up faster like folks telling me I'm a talentless hack or that I'm an evil money-grubbing soulless corporate drone. (For that matter, I'm not particularly pleased by people who go out of their way to explain how So-and-So did my job better years ago and really cared about the work, as compared to the way I approach the job.) If you're complaining about something you don't like, state the problem clearly without making it into a personal attack. Don't get shrill, don't use hyperbole, and don't shout. We carefully consider reasonable, well-thought-out criticism expressed simply and politely; we ignore people acting like jerks. There it is.

Hope that helps!



quote:
Originally posted by Sanishiver

Hello Rich,

Can you give us scribes here at Candlekeep some suggestions or guidelines for how to write and structure customer feedback about the Realms, for the purpose of sending it in to Wizards of the Coast?

I understand as a rule all feedback is important, but am also certain (based on my own professional experience) that why and how feedback is written can make a great deal of difference as to whether it’s fully read and understood.

Could you please advise if hand-written letters are better/worse than sending email, and also if it’s appropriate to request a reply of some sort? If it’s not too much to ask, can you also advise if feedback is ranked at all? That is, if some customer correspondence is obviously rules related as opposed to setting/lore related, does that automatically rank higher in priority to read or perhaps cause the feedback to be sorted into different ‘piles’ for review by different departments later?

Thanks as always!

J. Grenemyer


Reply author: Kentinal
Replied on: 17 Aug 2006 22:51:55
Message:

Mr. Baker it is nice to see you more active at candlekeep.

The "boards that should not be mentioned" is not useable for anyone that blocks images. I do have an account there, but have to go though the rather painful (for me) process of dealing with images to make or reply to a post. Prehaps you could talk to web design team about making those boards more friendly for users that wish to comment?


Reply author: Sanishiver
Replied on: 18 Aug 2006 00:32:08
Message:

Rich,

Thanks for taking the time to provide a detailed response!

J. Grenemyer


Reply author: Lameth
Replied on: 18 Aug 2006 12:44:16
Message:

Hi,
can you tell us where Filsaelene disappears to?
http://www.candlekeep.com/forum/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=7572

Whoosh and she was gone.


Reply author: Mkhaiwati
Replied on: 18 Aug 2006 17:25:50
Message:

Thanks for the reply's to questions, and more importantly, looking ta the thread that KnightErrantJR started on the other boards. It does mean a lot. (I would've said something there but even with a cable modem, it takes so long to navigate those boards sometimes.)

I possess some of Merritt's work, but can't really get into them. I have tried a couple of times.

Since this is supposed to be a question scroll, can you give us any idea what maps might be found within the Cormyr supplement, specifically maps of towns. (i.e should I continue mapping some villages in Cormyr on my own or just wait?)

Also, do you have any other writing projects planned? I did enjoy the Last Mythal trilogy.

Mkhaiwati


Reply author: Conlon
Replied on: 21 Aug 2006 01:45:04
Message:

Greetings Mr. Baker.

I had asked this question elsewhere just moments ago, then realized I should have come directly to you. In the fantastic tome, Lost Empires of Faerun, in the Realms of the High Forest section, it is written that the dwarven kingdom of Delzoun once encompassed the Rauvin Mountains. I am running a campaign in that area presently and am wondering if there is another source which provides more detail to that specific area.

By the way, LEoF has been my go-to book for this campaign. My long-term plan is to involve the fey'ri in the High Forest, as well as the Eldreth Veluuthra, then eventually have my players become involved in the events of "The Last Mythal" trilogy - which I also greatly enjoyed.

Thanks for all of your efforts in "fleshing out" the Realms.


Reply author: The Sage
Replied on: 21 Aug 2006 02:52:30
Message:

Conlon, I've provided you with a number of sources you can use to learn more about the Rauvin Mountains.

See your original scroll:- http://candlekeep.com/forum/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=7583


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 22 Aug 2006 00:04:24
Message:

She sticks with the Crusade, serving with the various healers that accompany the elven army. As it turned out I never really got back into the "hospital" again (there is one scene in Forsaken House where I did), so she never happened to cross paths with the protagonists again.

I intended for some characters to move into and out of the story, sometimes a little abruptly. Filsaelene first appeared in Forsaken House to illustrate the point that the fey'ri had sinister intentions in mind for any sun elf prisoners who fell into their hands. Having put her in the story to be rescued, I decided to have her road wind alongside Araevin's for a time before letting her go her own way. I suppose I was striving for a sense of verisimilitude; in a big, chaotic, hectic time of battles and adventures you might find different people around you at different times, and not always because someone had gotten killed and replaced.


quote:
Originally posted by Lameth

Hi,
can you tell us where Filsaelene disappears to?
http://www.candlekeep.com/forum/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=7572

Whoosh and she was gone.


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 22 Aug 2006 00:09:28
Message:

Merritt is an acquired taste, no doubt. I have a soft spot for 1940s and 1950s SF; I can't tell you how many times I've read Doc Smith's Lensman books. To each his own.

The action in the Cormyr adventure mostly takes place in Wheloon and the Vast Swamp.

I will soon be starting a new FR trilogy, but I really can't say much about it yet. I have only the sketchiest plans so far.


quote:
Originally posted by Mkhaiwati

Thanks for the reply's to questions, and more importantly, looking ta the thread that KnightErrantJR started on the other boards. It does mean a lot. (I would've said something there but even with a cable modem, it takes so long to navigate those boards sometimes.)

I possess some of Merritt's work, but can't really get into them. I have tried a couple of times.

Since this is supposed to be a question scroll, can you give us any idea what maps might be found within the Cormyr supplement, specifically maps of towns. (i.e should I continue mapping some villages in Cormyr on my own or just wait?)

Also, do you have any other writing projects planned? I did enjoy the Last Mythal trilogy.

Mkhaiwati


Reply author: Alaundo
Replied on: 22 Aug 2006 10:22:46
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by RichardBaker

I will soon be starting a new FR trilogy, but I really can't say much about it yet. I have only the sketchiest plans so far.




Well met

Now that's the kind of news I love to see first thing in a morn I'm very excited about even the slight mention of this and look forward to ye spilling some beans about this in the future, Richard


Reply author: Mkhaiwati
Replied on: 22 Aug 2006 15:53:15
Message:

Thanks! I can continue mapping as I am not touching those areas.

quote:
I will soon be starting a new FR trilogy, but I really can't say much about it yet. I have only the sketchiest plans so far.


I am also looking forward to it, Alaundo.

Mkhaiwati


Reply author: Wandering_mage
Replied on: 23 Sep 2006 14:38:25
Message:

Hello Mr Baker,
I am currently reading the first book in your Last Mythal series and might I say that Araevin is so similar to what I want my elven mage to be that I am now sad because I am 10th level and I can't change my feats to be more like him. Hahaha, anyways, you have written quite a gem. No wonder Ed says this is one of his favorite books. I really like how you portray Araevin as a capable yet also not perfect. As he finds himself rather useless during the golem fight I have also found my mage in the same situation. You obviously really thought out Araevin. Then again I am a huge fan of mages....and elves....and this series now. Araevin's party is very neat in its composition. You have written such a great story and I can't say that enough.


Reply author: Wandering_mage
Replied on: 23 Sep 2006 16:52:55
Message:

I am soooo silly, I just realized you wrote City of Ravens book, and Condemnation. Sadly I never took the time to look at the authors name long enough to realize the same author wrote both books. So now that I look like a complete idiot I shall say this, Both the above mentioned books rocked! Jack Ravenwild was entertaining and absolutley well thought out. He had charm and an almost James Bond/Aladdin/Ladies Man character feel to him. When I say Ladies Man I am referring to the Tim Meadows movie/character. WotSQ on the other hand is probably my favorite FR series. Although the Last Mythal series might steal that title. You really bring a different look with your books adding on to the greats works (Greenwood, Salvatore, Schend). It is refreshing and quite an adventure. I really need to be more observant with my realmslore and book knowledge. Sorry about the late congrats on those two books.


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 27 Sep 2006 21:50:32
Message:

Thanks for the kind words, Mage! I'm glad you've enjoyed my books. I plan to start another Realms series soon, but you won't see the first of those for a while yet.


quote:
Originally posted by Wandering_mage

I am soooo silly, I just realized you wrote City of Ravens book, and Condemnation. Sadly I never took the time to look at the authors name long enough to realize the same author wrote both books. So now that I look like a complete idiot I shall say this, Both the above mentioned books rocked! Jack Ravenwild was entertaining and absolutley well thought out. He had charm and an almost James Bond/Aladdin/Ladies Man character feel to him. When I say Ladies Man I am referring to the Tim Meadows movie/character. WotSQ on the other hand is probably my favorite FR series. Although the Last Mythal series might steal that title. You really bring a different look with your books adding on to the greats works (Greenwood, Salvatore, Schend). It is refreshing and quite an adventure. I really need to be more observant with my realmslore and book knowledge. Sorry about the late congrats on those two books.


Reply author: Thangorn
Replied on: 28 Sep 2006 12:52:53
Message:

I recently read the first two last mythal novels after a long break from reading forgotten realms novels.. I must say these are some brilliant pieces of work right here Richard. I love books that can engage me and these certainly did that well. You are right up there as one of the best Forgotten Realms Authors in my view.

Your portrayals of the scenes with both Maalthiir and Fzoul were particularly good I thought.

I actually had a quick question about Maalthiir's personal guard of those freaky warriors with the black eyes. When Sarya Dlardrageth meets Maalthiir for the first time she mentions the taint of planar magic on these beings. I wonder whether you can elaborate on what manner of creature these might be.

forgive my ignorance if this is mentioned in the third last mythal novel as I havent found it in Brisbane, Australia yet and havent gotten around to ordering it.

Thanks



Reply author: WalkerNinja
Replied on: 29 Sep 2006 16:46:55
Message:

Mr. Baker

First let me say that I've really enjoyed your work on the realms these last few years. On to the questions...

1) Can we expect a Campaign Journal Update (as appeared in PGtF) so that we can see some of the ramifications of your latest trilogy?

2) Does Zhentil Keep now rule Hillsfar as a kind of protectorate, or did we just witness a city state evolve into a nation?

3) Does Hillsfar retain its persecution of demi-humans now that it is under Zhentarim control (it always seemed like that was Maalthir's idea anyways)?

Thanks!
-Walker


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 04 Oct 2006 01:46:01
Message:

Thanks! Glad you liked the books.

I don't know if I ever really decided exactly what Maalthiir's creepy swordsmen were, other than some sort of extraplanar undead or constructs. Clearly they were much less bothered by being hacked to bits than they should have been, and they seemed to have a sort of collective mind or consciousness so that they acted in perfect unison without speaking. Beyond that, heck, I sorta just made them up. There's an old Planescape monster called a "keeper" that might just barely describe Maalthiir's guard, but I think I was really after something else, something new.



quote:
Originally posted by Thangorn

I recently read the first two last mythal novels after a long break from reading forgotten realms novels.. I must say these are some brilliant pieces of work right here Richard. I love books that can engage me and these certainly did that well. You are right up there as one of the best Forgotten Realms Authors in my view.

Your portrayals of the scenes with both Maalthiir and Fzoul were particularly good I thought.

I actually had a quick question about Maalthiir's personal guard of those freaky warriors with the black eyes. When Sarya Dlardrageth meets Maalthiir for the first time she mentions the taint of planar magic on these beings. I wonder whether you can elaborate on what manner of creature these might be.

forgive my ignorance if this is mentioned in the third last mythal novel as I havent found it in Brisbane, Australia yet and havent gotten around to ordering it.

Thanks





Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 04 Oct 2006 01:56:56
Message:

My pleasure!

As for your questions...

1) Campaign Journal. Nothing planned for the moment. I don't know what game product on the current schedule we would put it in.

2) Hillsfar is pretty much a tributary state to Zhentil Keep at the end of the series. It's wealthy and strong enough that the Zhents can't completely subsume it, but for years to come you can assume that Hillsfar won't do much without Fzoul's say-so. I would expect a lot of scheming, plotting, conniving, and backstabbing for quite some time. I see Hillsfar being governed by an ineffectual council of its wealthy merchant lords. Some collaborate with the Zhents, others resist Zhentish influence. There's a Zhent military legate who oversees "law and order" in the city, but I expect he's crooked, and I can see the high priest of the new temple of Bane scheming to make himself tyrant of the city. But overall the Zhents are trying to swallow a prize that might be a bit too big to digest.

3) Zhentil Keep has every reason to be highly suspicious of elven meddling in Hillsfar, and there are probably more than a few Red Plume holdouts still occupying influential positions in the city. On the other hand, I imagine that some of the "better" merchant lords--people who weren't all that happy under Maalthiir and likely disapproved of his humanocentric ways--might turn to Coronal Miritar and her people for help in wriggling out of Zhentish control. So, no arenas for now, but elves ought to expect to be harassed and spied upon every moment they're in the city.



quote:
Originally posted by WalkerNinja

Mr. Baker

First let me say that I've really enjoyed your work on the realms these last few years. On to the questions...

1) Can we expect a Campaign Journal Update (as appeared in PGtF) so that we can see some of the ramifications of your latest trilogy?

2) Does Zhentil Keep now rule Hillsfar as a kind of protectorate, or did we just witness a city state evolve into a nation?

3) Does Hillsfar retain its persecution of demi-humans now that it is under Zhentarim control (it always seemed like that was Maalthir's idea anyways)?

Thanks!
-Walker


Reply author: WalkerNinja
Replied on: 04 Oct 2006 02:34:38
Message:

Thanks Rich!


Reply author: Wandering_mage
Replied on: 05 Oct 2006 21:47:53
Message:

Quick question Rich, what spell is cast when Araevin uses his wand of Disruption? Oh, and I just finished forsaken House and I am now on the next book, Farthest Reach. Damn this story rocks!


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 06 Oct 2006 21:52:02
Message:

It's "resonating bolt" in the 3.5 Spell Compendium. It used to be "lance of disruption" in Player's Option: Spells and Magic, which I wrote a few years back.

Enjoy the rest of the story!


quote:
Originally posted by Wandering_mage

Quick question Rich, what spell is cast when Araevin uses his wand of Disruption? Oh, and I just finished forsaken House and I am now on the next book, Farthest Reach. Damn this story rocks!


Reply author: Asgetrion
Replied on: 08 Oct 2006 00:08:40
Message:

Well met, Rich!

Now that the Faiths of Eberron is out, is there any chance for a Faiths of Faerūn?

I mean a book consisting of religious "fluff" and details - rituals, blessings/curses, terminology/vocabulary for each faith (i.e. fallen paladins or priests are known as 'Dark Watchers' within Helm's faith), daily chores, temple/shrine descriptions, heresies ('Heretic of the Faith'-feat is a marvelous DM tool :) and all that. No prestige classes, monsters or NPC statistics. Sort of usinf the lore presented in Faiths and Avatars and Faiths and Pantheons but taking it a bit further :)

Many scribes have asked very detailed religious questions from Ed here at Candlekeep ("How would a worshipper of Bane act in an inn?" or "How would a Cyricist react in the situation I have described" etc.)
I honestly think it would probably sell quite well, if Eric and Ed did it :)


Reply author: Kuje
Replied on: 08 Oct 2006 04:12:29
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Asgetrion

Well met, Rich!

Now that the Faiths of Eberron is out, is there any chance for a Faiths of Faerūn?

I mean a book consisting of religious "fluff" and details - rituals, blessings/curses, terminology/vocabulary for each faith (i.e. fallen paladins or priests are known as 'Dark Watchers' within Helm's faith), daily chores, temple/shrine descriptions, heresies ('Heretic of the Faith'-feat is a marvelous DM tool :) and all that. No prestige classes, monsters or NPC statistics. Sort of usinf the lore presented in Faiths and Avatars and Faiths and Pantheons but taking it a bit further :)

Many scribes have asked very detailed religious questions from Ed here at Candlekeep ("How would a worshipper of Bane act in an inn?" or "How would a Cyricist react in the situation I have described" etc.)
I honestly think it would probably sell quite well, if Eric and Ed did it :)




I asked at Gencon.... I guess they thought it was a good idea and so they'd think about it.....


Reply author: The Sage
Replied on: 08 Oct 2006 05:06:56
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Asgetrion

Well met, Rich!

Now that the Faiths of Eberron is out, is there any chance for a Faiths of Faerūn?
The fact that some EB-specific religious rituals and clerical practices were referenced and detailed within FoE, tends to make me think WotC may have started looking at this aspect of its various campaign settings with the intention of doing the same for FR as well, I hope.


Reply author: Wandering_mage
Replied on: 08 Oct 2006 12:08:04
Message:

It's only fair that they cover Faerun. Is there a more detailed campaign setting to match it? I say nay! Now with that said a question for Rich, and I promise I will stop after this question. Concerning Araevin's study of High Magic I am slightly expecting a controlling action to occur on the behalf of Tower Reilloch. The danger of a "self taught" (selukiira helping out a lot) High Mage kinda makes Araevin a wild card. I'm really relating to everything Araevin is about (self-sacrifice for his people, bearing the burden of protecting the Nightstar from the Fey'ri) and I wondered if there is a hit team or something that might take a shot at Araevin should he prove too out of bounds for the Tel'Quessir? Even though Araevin would quickly show any hit team the error of their ways. -Insert evil grin here- Is there any lore that would detail this or is this possibility kinda detailed like the hunting down of any mage that even mentions 'Killing Storm' or 'Nether Scrolls'?


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 12 Oct 2006 21:15:32
Message:

I don't see Evermeet's High Mages putting out a contract on Araevin unless he does something that is insanely reckless or dangerous. For example, if Araevin got it into his head to start mass-producing new High Mages of the Aryvandaaran tradition by sharing the Nightstar's lore with anybody who came along, the Evermeet High Mages might be forced to do something. But Araevin certainly knows that it's darned dangerous knowledge, so I just don't see him doing something like that.


quote:
Originally posted by Wandering_mage

It's only fair that they cover Faerun. Is there a more detailed campaign setting to match it? I say nay! Now with that said a question for Rich, and I promise I will stop after this question. Concerning Araevin's study of High Magic I am slightly expecting a controlling action to occur on the behalf of Tower Reilloch. The danger of a "self taught" (selukiira helping out a lot) High Mage kinda makes Araevin a wild card. I'm really relating to everything Araevin is about (self-sacrifice for his people, bearing the burden of protecting the Nightstar from the Fey'ri) and I wondered if there is a hit team or something that might take a shot at Araevin should he prove too out of bounds for the Tel'Quessir? Even though Araevin would quickly show any hit team the error of their ways. -Insert evil grin here- Is there any lore that would detail this or is this possibility kinda detailed like the hunting down of any mage that even mentions 'Killing Storm' or 'Nether Scrolls'?


Reply author: Beirnadri Magranth
Replied on: 12 Oct 2006 21:34:09
Message:

Didn't he also abandon his goal of being tutored there. I mean it seemed pretty clear how uncomfortable he made his former masters. They even feared him.


Reply author: WalkerNinja
Replied on: 13 Oct 2006 22:21:40
Message:

Besides, direct action (like sponsoring assassaination) isn't exactly elven style. Probably they would debate about it for a few years, systematically proposing, debating, and weighing every possible option including the four favorite solutions of the Elven People:

1) We'll ignore it. Its probably inferior (all evidence to the contrary) and will die before we hit middle age.

2)Let's imprison it with wards so that we won't have to deal with it, but a future generation (that is less informed about the threat than we) will have to deal with it instead.

3)HOLY CRAP! Kill it! Make it die! Destroy an entire nation or make a new desert if you have to! Just make it DIIIIE!

-and-

4)Ah hell, this place sucks. Lets just go somewhere else, like an island, or a phantom dimension of our own design. The suckiness of this place won't find us there, and we can always come back and visit in a few thousand years and pretend its our first time there (ahem ahem star elves ahem).


Reply author: Wandering_mage
Replied on: 16 Oct 2006 21:38:09
Message:

Just finished the second book and wow! Araevin is bringing so much to the book. His progress details the long and well prepared revenge of a pissed off Elven mage.

I am loving your use of some military terms during the big battle sequences and the manuevering before and after. It's like looking back at battles like Gettysburg and Waterloo. You really capture the details involved in the planning and execution without losing your audience. Bravo!

Now I have to get the final book and prepare myself for what I assume will be a fantastic standoff. Great job Rich!


Reply author: Purple Dragon Knight
Replied on: 17 Oct 2006 04:23:21
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Wandering_mage

Now I have to get the final book and prepare myself for what I assume will be a fantastic standoff. Great job Rich!

...which I am going to finish off in the next day or two. Enough boards now, I've got a book to read, and last time I stopped Araevin was tearing a hole in time and space, seriously messing things up!



Mod Edit: Removed offensive language.


Reply author: Wandering_mage
Replied on: 18 Oct 2006 02:51:20
Message:

Ok, I bought the last book. Wow, I am so excited! I haven't been this hyped about an elven wizard since reading the WotSQ series. You think Pharaun and Araevin would chill together and complain about how nobody gives them any respect or thanks them ever? In fact there is a book in itself! You could write it like the Screwtape letters or some correspondence like book format. That would be great! Then again you are probably hard at work on either an adventure write up, another sourcebook, or another elf oriented novel with tons of warfare and detailed magic. Well, good luck in any case.


Reply author: Purple Dragon Knight
Replied on: 18 Oct 2006 03:21:05
Message:

Wandering Mage: sometimes, you're a genius you know. No... most of the time. You rock!

Yes Rich: I would pay DEAR money (i.e. harcover money) to read, "Interview With Two Elf Wizards" (with Pharaun and Araevin each chilling on a comfy stuffed leather chair, drink in one hand and pipe in the other, looking straight a us, i.e. the interviewer NPC, which could be a half-elf bard or perhaps a dispassionate and abrasive Candlekeep monk, who cares not a whit about their fame or success...)


Reply author: Chosen of Moradin
Replied on: 18 Oct 2006 13:45:35
Message:

Or worst: the interviewer could be Volo...


Reply author: WalkerNinja
Replied on: 18 Oct 2006 19:07:15
Message:

I was skeptical about that idea at first, but Chosen has sold me. I would pay double hardcover money to see a pair of elf wizards interviewed by Volo.


Reply author: Wandering_mage
Replied on: 26 Oct 2006 21:05:19
Message:

Rich, I just finished the Final Gate series and you deserve a standing ovation Sir. All I can say is WOW.... I mean WOW. You made some epic heroes that have real flavor and have sacrificed all they could for the common good. I like your characterization of Selkirk. That was neat to see. I am amazed by the ending of the series and I have to say that you need to write three more books, that is if you don't mind.

Here is a silly question. In game terms did Araevin slap on the celestial template? Or is he truly something else now?

And another.
Are we going to see anymore of some of the coolest adventuring band in the Realms? And their leader?

And lastly.
What are the ranks of the Evereskan Vale Guard made up of? Are they Elven heavy infantry? Pikemen? Archer slash medium infatry with shock troop morale and experience from the recent war in Evereska (pre-final gate)? I got the feeling that they might be light the English Longbowman of the Hundred Years war. You know, they just do everything well and are vicious opponents.


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 27 Oct 2006 19:50:54
Message:

Thanks for the kind words! I'm just now starting to seriously tinker around with outlines for my next trilogy, but it won't really touch on any of the Last Mythal characters; I'm heading off for different parts of Faerun to tell a "smaller" story.

As for your questions...

RE: Araevin. Yes, the rite he performed at the end of "Farthest Reach" made him celestial. The darkest portions of the Aryvandaaran high magic tradition required the practitioner to replace the frailty of his mortal soul with the inflexible "outsider" soul. In game terms, many of those High Magic epic spells have mitigating factors to the effect of "take horrible soul damage if you're not an outsider."

RE: The Evereskans. I think you're right, they're archers and medium infantry. I think just about every elf in a elf army carries a bow. That said, the Vale Guard are probably the heaviest footsoldiers you'll see in an elf army. They're definitely swordsmen first and archers second. And they are also highly, highly experienced after the gruesome struggle against the phaerimm. I think that well-organized elven armies are probably the best "combined arms" forces in the world, using magic, archery, cavalry, and infantry quite skillfully to cut enemy armies to ribbons. Sort of like the early Byzantines that way, I guess.


quote:
Originally posted by Wandering_mage

Rich, I just finished the Final Gate series and you deserve a standing ovation Sir. All I can say is WOW.... I mean WOW. You made some epic heroes that have real flavor and have sacrificed all they could for the common good. I like your characterization of Selkirk. That was neat to see. I am amazed by the ending of the series and I have to say that you need to write three more books, that is if you don't mind.

Here is a silly question. In game terms did Araevin slap on the celestial template? Or is he truly something else now?

And another.
Are we going to see anymore of some of the coolest adventuring band in the Realms? And their leader?

And lastly.
What are the ranks of the Evereskan Vale Guard made up of? Are they Elven heavy infantry? Pikemen? Archer slash medium infatry with shock troop morale and experience from the recent war in Evereska (pre-final gate)? I got the feeling that they might be light the English Longbowman of the Hundred Years war. You know, they just do everything well and are vicious opponents.


Reply author: Kuje
Replied on: 27 Oct 2006 20:04:58
Message:

Hi Richard,

I'm not sure if you can help me but there's 5 NPC's in Lost Empires that were never named and so I was looking for the names of these 5 NPC's.

They are:

At least 21st level Wizard. High Mage, Male Moon Elf Lich, Resides in the ruins of Shantar Othreier, Lost Empires of Faerun

5th Ranger/2nd Sorcerer Male Half-Green Dragon/Half-Wood Elf, NE, Offers the opportunity to question Chloracridara if they can meet her price, Lost Empires of Faerun

13th Wizard, Moon Elf Baelnorn, LG, One of the guardians of Reluraun's Tomb, Lost Empires of Faerun
13th Wizard, Moon Elf Baelnorn, LG, One of the guardians of Reluraun's Tomb, Lost Empires of Faerun
13th Wizard, Moon Elf Baelnorn, LG, One of the guardians of Reluraun's Tomb, Lost Empires of Faerun


Reply author: Wandering_mage
Replied on: 28 Oct 2006 00:12:58
Message:

Thanks Rich. Your lore is priceless and KnighterrantJR has already spread the knowledge on among the scribes here. Those Evereskan Vale Guards rock. More must be written of them! If you get some time in the future and aren't doing anything I would love to hear about Elven tactics and warfare strategems. Or that might already be somewhere. I know Steve Schend has written a lot on the subject, but I feel there is so much to know that not even ten books could cover it all. Maybe if some one here at Candlekeep gets enough knowledge on Elven warfare then an article could be written up. Ah, now I'm rabbling.


Reply author: Purple Dragon Knight
Replied on: 29 Oct 2006 07:53:36
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by RichardBaker

Thanks for the kind words! I'm just now starting to seriously tinker around with outlines for my next trilogy, but it won't really touch on any of the Last Mythal characters; I'm heading off for different parts of Faerun to tell a "smaller" story.

I'm on the last few pages of the Final Gate, and should in fact see the end of it by tonight... so I can't wait to see the ending that Kuje and you have seen already!

As for your next book focusing of a 'smaller' story: bravo! I love character development, often much more than big RSEs!

Although I'll tip my hat to you here: as far as RSEs go, you handle them very well! I like when authors do not downplay one side or another as morons... in your book, we saw elves conquer; we saw the Zhents actually making headway -- Fzoul does the smart thing and wins himself a castle instead of [gasp!] losing yet another entire army in the woods of Shadowdale! ; the Sembians actually think longterm and in terms of their country as a whole rather than a mere cash grab by individual merchants, as reflected by their trust in Selkirk to handle things, etc.

Hopefully we see even more 'character-centric' vistas of the Realms in your next one. The only thing I'm really left wondering after the Last Mythal trilogy is who was that air genasi chick really? what about that Donner guy? and the two Sildeyuir/Yuirwood dudes? There was a lot of action and lots of events in the books, and it must have been hard to fit everything in such a low page count... I feel that there could have been another two-book's worth of pages distributed in those three books that dealt with character-development, as they all seemed so interesting! (wait: that means... humm.... 900+600 = 1500 pages divided by three = 500 pages per book... yeah, thereabouts! )

In your next book, [crossing fingers as I write this, hoping my Jedi mind powers are not too late and I can still 'convince' you to 'bend' your stories a 'certain' way... <ok, enough with the Shatnerianisms! ] I hope we see more about the character's religion (as applied in every day situations, including dogmas and ceremonies, sermons, etc.), local trade/economy, customs, habits, the importance or influence (or lack thereof) of the character's family upon his/her life, etc. (siblings!!! I hate how most characters in fantasy fiction sprouted from a cabbage patch and have no siblings!!! it's always 'dead when he was young' and such... if you give me a half-dragon, I want to see Joe Schuck Rashemi have a fight with that brass mature adult female! )

Ok, lots of tangential rants again, but you get the gist of it!


Reply author: Penknight
Replied on: 07 Nov 2006 07:42:20
Message:

I was curious if there are plans on putting stats to the characters from the Last Mythal series, and also if you could answer a big question my players (also avid readers of The Last Mythal series) have asked me... Is Sarya a wizard or a sorceress? Thank you for your time Mr. Baker, and my best to you.

Oh, one last thing... did I detect a reference to Reverend Ones in Book III of the Last Mythal? Seemed kinda right, but just want to make sure. Again, thanks.


Reply author: Brenigin
Replied on: 07 Nov 2006 10:37:52
Message:

Sarya gets one-line stats in a couple of sourcebooks - CE Female Half-fiend Sor17? Can't remember off the top of my head...


Reply author: MaskedOne
Replied on: 08 Nov 2006 00:16:00
Message:

Is Aeron Morieth likely to be revisited any time in the near future?

More amusing question, would he be a standard shadow adept under current rules or did he manage to retain limited access to the true Weave as he did in the book?


Reply author: Kuje
Replied on: 08 Nov 2006 02:00:23
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by MaskedOne

Is Aeron Morieth likely to be revisited any time in the near future?

More amusing question, would he be a standard shadow adept under current rules or did he manage to retain limited access to the true Weave as he did in the book?





He is in the FRCS with short stats.....


Reply author: WalkerNinja
Replied on: 10 Nov 2006 17:02:28
Message:

Hey Mr. Baker!

First, let me thank you for making yourself available here.

I've got a question about the re-conquered Myth Drannor of five years in the future (I hope that I don't run into a big fat NDA..)

We know that they have recovered the Rule Blade... but what of the Nether Scrolls in Windsong Tower (in the form of a tree). Have they been re-discovered yet?

-Walker-


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 10 Nov 2006 21:36:03
Message:

I'm hesitant to say yes. My book just didn't cover it, so I would just be speculating.

If the elves do rediscover the Nether Scrolls, I'm inclined to think that they would tread very, very carefully with them. So, either the elves haven't found the Windsong hoard yet, or they've found it and have chosen to not avail themselves of the Scrolls' powers. Same result to most outside observers.


quote:
Originally posted by WalkerNinja

Hey Mr. Baker!

First, let me thank you for making yourself available here.

I've got a question about the re-conquered Myth Drannor of five years in the future (I hope that I don't run into a big fat NDA..)

We know that they have recovered the Rule Blade... but what of the Nether Scrolls in Windsong Tower (in the form of a tree). Have they been re-discovered yet?

-Walker-


Reply author: Kuje
Replied on: 10 Nov 2006 21:45:20
Message:

Rich,

Any answer to my question that I asked on the 27th of Oct, or should I ask Ed instead?


Reply author: WalkerNinja
Replied on: 10 Nov 2006 22:15:45
Message:

Thanks for the swift reply!

I can certainly understand why you would be hesitant to answer, but since the Myth Drannor scrolls grant EXP (LEoF) it seems like it would be a great way to regenerate the reputation for great magic in that region.

Another question, if you don't mind, again about something that your book didn't specifically cover. Would the Coronal and Fflar be sponsoring adventurers to purge the city of the lingering evil over the course of the intermittent five years?

If so, assuming elven artifacts must be returned to the government, what payment might they recieve? Real Estate?

quote:
I'm hesitant to say yes. My book just didn't cover it, so I would just be speculating.

If the elves do rediscover the Nether Scrolls, I'm inclined to think that they would tread very, very carefully with them. So, either the elves haven't found the Windsong hoard yet, or they've found it and have chosen to not avail themselves of the Scrolls' powers. Same result to most outside observers.



Reply author: Thangorn
Replied on: 20 Nov 2006 21:45:39
Message:

Hi again Richard,

I finally got "Final Gate" sent by Amazon.. awesome book, I've barely put it down once again.

couple of quick things to ask you concerning some stuff in the book..
of the creatures you mention in the Lorosfyr part of the book are you referring to Maur (big pale giants) and Ineffable horrors (those ogre-sized batwinged things that chase Araevin and his companions which he eventually destroys with a fireball) in this section?

I loved the scenes in Lorosfyr, I really want to find an excuse to use it in my online and offline campaigns :)

Our team are attempting to build a module that encompasses as much of the Moonsea as possible for Neverwinter Nights 2 so I'm interested in any canon referring to Zhentil Keep and environs.

You mentioned a castle that appeared to be on the north side of the new Tesh Bridge (or the Force bridge not sure) in Zhentil Keep that the city got its name for.. I was wondering whether I got it wrong and you were referring to Lord Orgauth's old castle (now the Temple of Bane) at the east end of the old city, or whether there is still (in FR canon) a castle called Zhentil Keep standing on the North side of the River Tesh?

I realise thats probably a pretty anal question, but any info that helps in fleshing out that area according to FR canon I'm very interested in.:)

Your portrayals of Fzoul and Scyllua in "Final Gate" were awesome. I particularly liked the scene with Tharxul the beholder.. "You submit, You serve, You obey!".. just awesome..

anyway.. I prattled on quite enough. Thanks Richard.



Reply author: Penknight
Replied on: 21 Nov 2006 21:52:44
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Brenigin

Sarya gets one-line stats in a couple of sourcebooks - CE Female Half-fiend Sor17? Can't remember off the top of my head...

The Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting lists her as a CE female sun elf/fey'ri Wiz17 (page 167), and Lords of Darkness lists her as CE female sun elf half-fiend Sor17 (page 126). I understand that in the Last Mythal series it makes several references to her being a sorceress, but on page 259 of Forsaken House it says "She had perpared her spells for the day with that task in mind..."

I know that in 2nd Edition the term sorcerer or sorceress was used to describe wizards, and I am just curious if the same held true here as well. Thanks!!


Reply author: Penknight
Replied on: 09 Dec 2006 01:14:18
Message:

Oh, one last question... is there a chance that the Most Noble Order of the Radiant Heart will be making an appearance in the upcoming Complete Champion?


Reply author: MerrikCale
Replied on: 11 Dec 2006 12:49:27
Message:

I'm sure this has been asked but I'm curious. How was it that Araevin and his old adventuring company come to be the characters drawn throughout the sourcebook Underdark and apparently on the cover of Lost Empires of Faerun? Have you ever provided more info (like names, races, classes, etc) to this Company?


Reply author: Kuje
Replied on: 11 Dec 2006 15:58:56
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by MerrikCale

I'm sure this has been asked but I'm curious. How was it that Araevin and his old adventuring company come to be the characters drawn throughout the sourcebook Underdark and apparently on the cover of Lost Empires of Faerun? Have you ever provided more info (like names, races, classes, etc) to this Company?



Rich has answered this on the WOTC boards. If I recall right, he said that his characters aren't actually the characters on the sourcebooks. It's just a coincidence.


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 11 Dec 2006 20:20:18
Message:

Answered this all the way back on page 3 of the thread. But I copied the post here:

I've been second-guessing myself on this one in the last couple of months. Here's how it happened:

About three years ago, we created a set of "iconic" FR characters for use in playtesting and as generic FR adventurers on covers and in illustrations--just like core D&D uses Jozan, Regdar, Tordek, and the rest. Araevin was one of these characters (a sun elf wizard, obviously), and so we occasionally used him for illos, just as we randomly cycled through various sets of these characters for different FR products. Obviously, a set of generic adventurers have higher usefulness in some products than in others--so these guys appeared in City of the Spider Queen and Underdark, but not in Shining South or Unapproachable East.

(Belmora, Sanidine, and others are also on this list of iconic FR adventurers. The whole FR team at the time tackled this list, so the characters were created by different FR designers and editors. Araevin happened to be one I made up, though, so he's mine as much as he's anybody's. Other FR iconics included Teherrun, a tiefling rogue; Evendur, an aasimar paladin; Valak Vrinn, a drow bard; and Mara, a female human barbarian.)

When I started working on Forsaken House, I knew that I wanted an elf protagonist, since the whole series was supposed to be about elves. And more specifically I wanted a sun elf protagonist, because I sort of wanted to "rehabilitate" sun elves a bit. They've come off as more lawful evil than chaotic good in a lot of the material we've done about elves. Once I settled on a sun elf wizard, I naturally began to think of him as "Araevin" and used the name as a placeholder in the early story outlines. But the placeholder grew on me, and I eventually said to myself, "I like the name, I like the look, why change it?"

Anyway, I certainly knew that we'd used Araevin in a fair amount of art in several RPG sourcebooks, but I decided to stick with Araevin-the-iconic as the vision for Araevin-the-protagonist. In retrospect, it might have been a little "cleaner" to just make up a whole new name for the guy in Forsaken House, but there it is.

Araevin clearly has a history of adventuring in Faerun, but I think it's also clear that Araevin (the Forsaken House protagonist) couldn't have stomped around in Maerimydra in the events of the City of the Spider Queen adventure, where Araevin (the iconic adventurer) happens to appear. The timing's off, since we know that close to twenty years have gone by since Araevin last adventured with his old comrades. That's one of the reasons I'm second-guessing myself on the use of the same character name.



Hope that clears things up!



quote:
Originally posted by Kuje

quote:
Originally posted by MerrikCale

I'm sure this has been asked but I'm curious. How was it that Araevin and his old adventuring company come to be the characters drawn throughout the sourcebook Underdark and apparently on the cover of Lost Empires of Faerun? Have you ever provided more info (like names, races, classes, etc) to this Company?



Rich has answered this on the WOTC boards. If I recall right, he said that his characters aren't actually the characters on the sourcebooks. It's just a coincidence.


Reply author: MerrikCale
Replied on: 11 Dec 2006 20:40:11
Message:

Thanks. Sorry for asking the same question, thats what you get for quickly reviewing the previous pages. Was Belmora your creation as well. I notice she's in the Underdark Supp and listed as an old member of the Comapny.


Reply author: Mace Hammerhand
Replied on: 19 Dec 2006 22:29:52
Message:

Rich,

I already asked this question/suggestion on the Wizards forum but didn't get a reply, so far. Hence, I'm putting the question here as well:

The recent trend to make adventure-sourcebooks like MotM is to combine, if I understand your "mission-statement" correctly, to address more customers.

Wouldn't it make more sense to make books for either players or DMs?

Personally, I already got upset when one of my players bought Waterdeep: City of Splendors and read the entry for Elaith Craulnober. Personally I think, there is information that should not be in a player's hands, yet all the sourcebooks out there are with both player and DM in mind.

In my experience, although players can seperate their own knowledge from the character's knowledge, whatever they read in any sourcebook will influence their way of playing.

Why not make sourcebooks more like the old original D&D gazeteers with a player's guide and a DM guide, seperated into two booklets? Or make two smaller softcover books, one for the player and one, more extensive with vital game information, for the DM, which are then sold seperately. It would cause far less headache and heartache for us DMs, cuz we'd not have to restrict reading with books that we cannot enforce anyway...


Reply author: Archwizard
Replied on: 20 Dec 2006 04:19:52
Message:

Dear Mr. Baker,

Wizards of the Coast recently tried several book experiments with alternate rules systems such as Tome of Magic, Tome of Battle, Magic of Incarnum and even the Invocation casting method of the Warlock in Complete Arcane. While not all of these systems performed as well as others, WotC did hint that some of these alternative rules received strong positive responses from fans. At the same time, I recall reading something about certain concepts and settings the company found difficult to work with and an idea occurred to me. Has WotC ever considered doing a take of Oriental Adventures with game mechanics in the style of these alternate systems, either adapting existing optional mechanics or creating entirely new ones to suit the flavor of games influenced by an oriental setting?

Such a fusion could potentially make an Oriental Adventures book feasible. This provides the draw of a fresh approach on oriental adventures and the new rules of an alternate mechanics system in a logical package where both aspects support the other. Currently, Asian theme classes such as the wu jen, the shugenja and the samurai (3.0e) simply borrow and modify the mechanics of the existing classes (basically just like a wizard, a favored soul, and a fighter but with restrictions). Redefining the classes, the magic systems, and the other mechanics of an oriental setting would help define what makes an oriental adventure different and unique in its own way while giving fans plenty to use in their games (fans who like new and alternate rules, fans who want to try an OA game, fans who like Kara-Tur, etc.).

Perhaps with such a project, WotC might even consider throwing in a revival of Kara-Tur (which is secretly the real purpose of this post, ::shhh::). The same applies to Arabian Adventures/Al-Qadim/Zakhara of course. Someone at Wizards of the Coast likely thought of this already, possibly even rejected it long ago as impractical, though I figured I should just ask since I have nothing to lose by doing so. I hope that this offered something constructive for consideration, as feedback if nothing else. Perhaps if it is convenient, you can share a few thoughts on this, enlighten us if Wizards thought about something like this idea, how far the idea went, or even reiterate that Wizards still feels they should leave anything Kara-Tur and Zakhara related to Dragon magazine.

Thanks,
Henry


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 20 Dec 2006 23:05:22
Message:

She originated in the same process (creating a set of FR iconics), but I didn't actually design her. One of the other FR team members did (don't remember who right off the top of my head).


quote:
Originally posted by MerrikCale

Thanks. Sorry for asking the same question, thats what you get for quickly reviewing the previous pages. Was Belmora your creation as well. I notice she's in the Underdark Supp and listed as an old member of the Comapny.


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 20 Dec 2006 23:10:23
Message:

I don't think we will explore two booklets in one cover any time soon, just because most of our physical format decisions are pretty much made through 2008. But it's not a bad idea to build a stronger segregation of player and DM material in the same book. Even a book like Unapproachable East or Underdark has chapters clearly pointed at the player and other chapters clearly pointed at the DM.

So, no immediate course changes, but I'll keep that in mind as we begin work on the next iteration of Realms product. It's a ways out at this point.


quote:
Originally posted by Mace Hammerhand

Rich,

I already asked this question/suggestion on the Wizards forum but didn't get a reply, so far. Hence, I'm putting the question here as well:

The recent trend to make adventure-sourcebooks like MotM is to combine, if I understand your "mission-statement" correctly, to address more customers.

Wouldn't it make more sense to make books for either players or DMs?

Personally, I already got upset when one of my players bought Waterdeep: City of Splendors and read the entry for Elaith Craulnober. Personally I think, there is information that should not be in a player's hands, yet all the sourcebooks out there are with both player and DM in mind.

In my experience, although players can seperate their own knowledge from the character's knowledge, whatever they read in any sourcebook will influence their way of playing.

Why not make sourcebooks more like the old original D&D gazeteers with a player's guide and a DM guide, seperated into two booklets? Or make two smaller softcover books, one for the player and one, more extensive with vital game information, for the DM, which are then sold seperately. It would cause far less headache and heartache for us DMs, cuz we'd not have to restrict reading with books that we cannot enforce anyway...


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 20 Dec 2006 23:16:47
Message:

It's an interesting idea. But, I hate to say it -- we have no plans to tackle Oriental Adventures, Arabian Adventures, or Kara-Tur any time in 2007, which is as far out as I can discuss specific product plans. (At this point I would consider it highly unlikely for 2008, too, but I can't speak with as much confidence there simply because it's longer out.)

Our business and management teams are very skeptical of product lines or one-offs that would appeal to only a subset of the audience. They'd much rather spend our time and energy creating sourcebooks with the broadest appeal possible. Kara-Tur in the context of FR is a subset of a subset -- something our business guys really don't want to spend much effort on.


quote:
Originally posted by Archwizard

Dear Mr. Baker,

Wizards of the Coast recently tried several book experiments with alternate rules systems such as Tome of Magic, Tome of Battle, Magic of Incarnum and even the Invocation casting method of the Warlock in Complete Arcane. While not all of these systems performed as well as others, WotC did hint that some of these alternative rules received strong positive responses from fans. At the same time, I recall reading something about certain concepts and settings the company found difficult to work with and an idea occurred to me. Has WotC ever considered doing a take of Oriental Adventures with game mechanics in the style of these alternate systems, either adapting existing optional mechanics or creating entirely new ones to suit the flavor of games influenced by an oriental setting?

Such a fusion could potentially make an Oriental Adventures book feasible. This provides the draw of a fresh approach on oriental adventures and the new rules of an alternate mechanics system in a logical package where both aspects support the other. Currently, Asian theme classes such as the wu jen, the shugenja and the samurai (3.0e) simply borrow and modify the mechanics of the existing classes (basically just like a wizard, a favored soul, and a fighter but with restrictions). Redefining the classes, the magic systems, and the other mechanics of an oriental setting would help define what makes an oriental adventure different and unique in its own way while giving fans plenty to use in their games (fans who like new and alternate rules, fans who want to try an OA game, fans who like Kara-Tur, etc.).

Perhaps with such a project, WotC might even consider throwing in a revival of Kara-Tur (which is secretly the real purpose of this post, ::shhh::). The same applies to Arabian Adventures/Al-Qadim/Zakhara of course. Someone at Wizards of the Coast likely thought of this already, possibly even rejected it long ago as impractical, though I figured I should just ask since I have nothing to lose by doing so. I hope that this offered something constructive for consideration, as feedback if nothing else. Perhaps if it is convenient, you can share a few thoughts on this, enlighten us if Wizards thought about something like this idea, how far the idea went, or even reiterate that Wizards still feels they should leave anything Kara-Tur and Zakhara related to Dragon magazine.

Thanks,
Henry


Reply author: Rolindin
Replied on: 23 Dec 2006 09:46:29
Message:

First I would like to say hello to Mr. Baker.
A question that comes to my mind is from your Last Mythal Series.
This would be the question if it has not been covered before by others.
When the dead elf sprits were called to fight for the elf forces in Myth Drannor is there a elven name for this action. And is there going to be any kind of write up on this in the future WOTC book or Books, (or has the action been written up already in past books).


Reply author: Archwizard
Replied on: 24 Dec 2006 20:52:21
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by RichardBaker

It's an interesting idea. But, I hate to say it -- we have no plans to tackle Oriental Adventures, Arabian Adventures, or Kara-Tur any time in 2007, which is as far out as I can discuss specific product plans. (At this point I would consider it highly unlikely for 2008, too, but I can't speak with as much confidence there simply because it's longer out.)

Our business and management teams are very skeptical of product lines or one-offs that would appeal to only a subset of the audience. They'd much rather spend our time and energy creating sourcebooks with the broadest appeal possible. Kara-Tur in the context of FR is a subset of a subset -- something our business guys really don't want to spend much effort on.


Hi Rich,

I appreciate the response. In regards to the news of nothing on the immediate horizon on Kara-Tur and the like, no worries. Fortunately, due to the details of the process you and other authors/designers of the Realms provided us, I have a decent notion of the various factors that play into the publishing schedule. I hold no illusion of seeing another OA or a revived Kara-Tur in the next few years, perhaps not until the end of the decade or even the next edition. However, I do hope to see such a book sometime in the future.

Understandably, the company's attention isn't on such topics, nor should it be if the trends and current conceptualization continues. The company should promote the setting by offering books that provide the most use to the most people in their own interest and that of the fans (a faltering FR is no fun for anyone). At first, I thought to respond by saying my idea would produce a book that is the subset of many things (alternate rules enthusiasts, Kara-Tur fans, regular FR fans, people interested in OA), but then a subset of many things is still a subset.

So then the optimal choice should be to make OA/Kara-Tur as mainstream as possible. WotC could publish a new Oriental Adventures in the format and style of Tome of Magic or Magic of Incarnum, a book that deals solely with the new rules systems. WotC seems quite willing to put out such one-offs involving optional rules. Treat it as one of those books, which just happens to use an Oriental influences. As noted, Tome of Battle already leans heavily towards this concept.

Following this, WotC can then release a Kara-Tur book fully under the FR imprint. Treat Kara-Tur as another region of the Realms so it's no longer a subset. Thin the sub-setting distinction by integrating the two continents; detail and fill in bits based on the old books, perhaps even implement a few strategic retcons to Kara-Tur to make it more like Faerun in history and scope. Then you could treat Kara-Tur as a firm part of the Forgotten Realms rather than a one-off or a niche product line.

Though this probably still doesn't meet the ideal requirements for the marketing and business guys to give it much attention. I have noticed that non-Western ideas influence and constitute an increasing portion of the fantasy genre available through popular media (movies, TV, video games, comics, even the Magic CCG tried their hand at it with the Kamigawa set). OA/Kara-Tur arrived decades before this new wave of imported and eastern-inspired fantasy entertainment, a revival if given appropriate attention could be the perfect platform to expand D&D into this area (in a way that Rokugan couldn't sustain).

All right, enough of my amateur market pitching, Wizards probably has access to a number of highly trained and experienced business people who have facts and numbers showing otherwise. Thanks for your time, Mr. Baker, and once again for the swift reply. I do hope WotC keeps OA/Kara-Tur (and Al-Qadim/Zakhara) in mind.

H


Reply author: Rolindin
Replied on: 25 Dec 2006 05:55:56
Message:

Helloe agian Mr baker first and happy hollidays.
I have a question about Fflar Starbow, if you don't mind.
The process that brought him back to life, does it have a name: from one of the older books. Or it it a process that has not been published as of yet.
And could you give us a kind of over view of the process and how one might be able to inact it.


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 28 Dec 2006 20:06:52
Message:

Essentially, it's just a resurrection spell. Now, that spell has a pretty tough time limit (10 years per caster level). So I hypothesized the existence of an epic resurrection spell that wouldn't care about the time limit. It wouldn't be that bad of a Spellcraft DC in the epic spellcasting rules, but it does mean one of two things: either Seiveril is at least a 21st-level cleric, or Corellon Larethian gave him a hand in some way. To be honest, I think it was a little of both--Seiveril was at least 15th level just based on the spells I had him using, and I think the book supports the idea that the Seldarine also took a hand in things.


quote:
Originally posted by Rolindin

Helloe agian Mr baker first and happy hollidays.
I have a question about Fflar Starbow, if you don't mind.
The process that brought him back to life, does it have a name: from one of the older books. Or it it a process that has not been published as of yet.
And could you give us a kind of over view of the process and how one might be able to inact it.


Reply author: Mace Hammerhand
Replied on: 28 Dec 2006 20:24:39
Message:

Richard,

this point came up in a recent discussion (well actually I made that point):

why have the RSEs of recent times not been explored in supplement format? E.g. Shade, Myth Drannor/Cormanthor, etc. I thought it would be a good selling point to tie in supplements with the books.

In advance happy new one to you and your family


Reply author: Skeptic
Replied on: 28 Dec 2006 21:16:43
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by RichardBaker

Essentially, it's just a resurrection spell. Now, that spell has a pretty tough time limit (10 years per caster level). So I hypothesized the existence of an epic resurrection spell that wouldn't care about the time limit. It wouldn't be that bad of a Spellcraft DC in the epic spellcasting rules, but it does mean one of two things: either Seiveril is at least a 21st-level cleric, or Corellon Larethian gave him a hand in some way. To be honest, I think it was a little of both--Seiveril was at least 15th level just based on the spells I had him using, and I think the book supports the idea that the Seldarine also took a hand in things.


Seiveril didn't have the body so it was at least a True Resurrection, but even this 9th level spell has a "years limit". Conclusion : Seiveril needed divine intervention and/or an Epic spell.


Reply author: Rolindin
Replied on: 31 Dec 2006 14:55:16
Message:

I do wish to thank you for answering my questions Mr baker, and maybe we could see something in the future books on the 10 years per caster levels.


Reply author: Wandering_mage
Replied on: 02 Jan 2007 23:26:09
Message:

Hey Rich, great job on the Dummies Guide to DM'ing. It has truly increased the enjoyment of my gaming sessions. I would suggest every DM get this book for the great advice in this book.


Reply author: Penknight
Replied on: 03 Jan 2007 09:02:45
Message:

There is something else besides Sarya and the Radiant Heart that I would like to ask you about. I know that many people on other boards (as well as my own gaming group) have asked this many times: Are there any plans on a revision (again) of the bladesinger PrC, or are the versions from Races of Faerun and Complete Warrior the only versions that we will have to choose from? Thank you for your time yet again, Mr. Baker. I truly do appreciate it.


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 05 Jan 2007 21:13:11
Message:

We don't have any current plans to revise the bladesinger -- Races of Faerun and Complete Warrior are the only places it's going to appear, as far as I know.


quote:
Originally posted by Penknight

There is something else besides Sarya and the Radiant Heart that I would like to ask you about. I know that many people on other boards (as well as my own gaming group) have asked this many times: Are there any plans on a revision (again) of the bladesinger PrC, or are the versions from Races of Faerun and Complete Warrior the only versions that we will have to choose from? Thank you for your time yet again, Mr. Baker. I truly do appreciate it.


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 05 Jan 2007 21:15:14
Message:

Say, thanks! I liked working with the Wiley Publishing folks, and I've always enjoyed the Dummies "style"--it suits my "casual writing" voice pretty well.


quote:
Originally posted by Wandering_mage

Hey Rich, great job on the Dummies Guide to DM'ing. It has truly increased the enjoyment of my gaming sessions. I would suggest every DM get this book for the great advice in this book.


Reply author: Wandering_mage
Replied on: 06 Jan 2007 21:17:49
Message:

Rich, I can't say it enough but you have increased the ease of DM'ing for so much. You put into words many concepts and pieces of advice that have made my players wonder where the heck I got this knowledge. The Dummies Guide to Dungeon Mastering is a must for any DM and I suggested it to a friend just today in fact! Keep writing!


Reply author: Besshalar
Replied on: 10 Jan 2007 22:43:49
Message:

Greetings Mr. Baker First let me tell you that I thoroughly enjoyed The Last Mythal trilogy (although I did feel that the last book seemed a bit rushed ). Now on to business The Nightlords of Moil I would be very grateful for any and all lore you might be able to give me . I know about their (or was it just the pocketplane of Moil?) first (and last?) appearance in the return to the tomb of horrors but would love to get as much up on them as possible even though I fear that i will receive a NDA reply to my query.

Edit: The reason I'm asking you is because there was a feat referring to them in a book which only has your name on the cover and I don't have a way of contacting Gygax who I believe was originally responsible for these guys..


Reply author: Penknight
Replied on: 11 Jan 2007 01:17:25
Message:

Fey'ri gaming question... in 2nd Edition there was a fey'ri bladesinger that had scales that covered his body from the neck down that looked like an incredibly fine mesh chainmail armor that gave him a base AC of 0. Is there a web update or anything that you could recommend as a game designer that would help to show this in 3.5? The fey'ri that I am making reference to is (my personal favorite fey'ri) Lord-Consort Myrlaer Ealoeth from Cloak & Dagger (page 94). Another reason that I am asking is the tanarukk gain a natural armor of +4 along with several other benefits, yet their LA is just a +3, much like a fey'ri if you chose enervation or dimension door as one of your abilities.

Thank you again for your time, Mr. Baker. I realize that you must be a busy person, and I just wanted to assure you that I greatly appreciate your taking time to answer my questions.


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 12 Jan 2007 21:41:12
Message:

I'm pretty sure that Bruce Cordell invented the sinister city of Moil for "Return to the Tomb of Horrors." The feat I designed for "Complete Arcane" certainly draws inspiration from that excellent adventure. But, other than that feat, as far as I know everything we've ever said about Moil or its people is in the "Return to the Tomb of Horrors" adventure. I really don't have anything to add to what's there.


quote:
Originally posted by Besshalar

Greetings Mr. Baker First let me tell you that I thoroughly enjoyed The Last Mythal trilogy (although I did feel that the last book seemed a bit rushed ). Now on to business The Nightlords of Moil I would be very grateful for any and all lore you might be able to give me . I know about their (or was it just the pocketplane of Moil?) first (and last?) appearance in the return to the tomb of horrors but would love to get as much up on them as possible even though I fear that i will receive a NDA reply to my query.

Edit: The reason I'm asking you is because there was a feat referring to them in a book which only has your name on the cover and I don't have a way of contacting Gygax who I believe was originally responsible for these guys..


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 12 Jan 2007 21:52:02
Message:

Well, it seems reasonable to me that you could add "+2 natural armor" to that laundry list of optional fey'ri abilities... maybe even +3 or +4, but in that case, it would certainly get the asterisk as an ability you can only have one of. I sure wouldn't go with "+10 natural armor" as the 2E character suggests, that's waaaaay too good for the level adjustment.

The fey'ri at +3 is probably suffering a bit. We've learned that level adjustment is not very good "game tech" and often leads to characters that just can't be played as PCs (or that compare badly against other critters of similar LA). If you're talking about a NPC, well, it's not important. But if you want to play this guy as a PC, then I think I wouldn't give away more than a couple of points of natural armor. (And how do you balance it against DR 10, anyway? How much natural armor is worth -10 damage per hit?)



quote:
Originally posted by Penknight

Fey'ri gaming question... in 2nd Edition there was a fey'ri bladesinger that had scales that covered his body from the neck down that looked like an incredibly fine mesh chainmail armor that gave him a base AC of 0. Is there a web update or anything that you could recommend as a game designer that would help to show this in 3.5? The fey'ri that I am making reference to is (my personal favorite fey'ri) Lord-Consort Myrlaer Eaoleth from Cloak & Dagger (page 94). Another reason that I am asking is the tanarukk gain a natural armor of +4 along with several other benefits, yet their LA is just a +3, much like a fey'ri if you chose enervation or dimension door as one of your abilities.

Thank you again for your time, Mr. Baker. I realize that you must be a busy person, and I just wanted to assure you that I greatly appreciate your taking time to answer my questions.


Reply author: Asgetrion
Replied on: 12 Jan 2007 22:17:32
Message:

Rich, have you considered at WoTC doing a 'Ptolus'-style "citybook" for FR? I think it is a GREAT idea to publish a book with 600+ pages of very detailed official lore, handouts, maps, advice, campaign hooks etc. Many DMs would probably rather pay a steeper price to get all those pages within one covers, instead of paying for four books with 150 pages in each.

Waterdeep and Silverymoon spring to mind, but it could also be a city guide for, say, five or six cities (with 100 pages of lore for each).


Reply author: Penknight
Replied on: 13 Jan 2007 00:23:31
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by RichardBaker

Well, it seems reasonable to me that you could add "+2 natural armor" to that laundry list of optional fey'ri abilities... maybe even +3 or +4, but in that case, it would certainly get the asterisk as an ability you can only have one of. I sure wouldn't go with "+10 natural armor" as the 2E character suggests, that's waaaaay too good for the level adjustment.

The fey'ri at +3 is probably suffering a bit. We've learned that level adjustment is not very good "game tech" and often leads to characters that just can't be played as PCs (or that compare badly against other critters of similar LA). If you're talking about a NPC, well, it's not important. But if you want to play this guy as a PC, then I think I wouldn't give away more than a couple of points of natural armor. (And how do you balance it against DR 10, anyway? How much natural armor is worth -10 damage per hit?)
Thank you, sir. I'll keep all of that in mind. Best of luck on your future projects.


Reply author: Penknight
Replied on: 17 Jan 2007 09:50:24
Message:

I have just had the pleasure of reading your story The Bladesinger's Lesson in Realms of the Elves, and I have to say that it is one of the best short stories that I have read in quite some time. I am now rather eager to ask if you plan on statting or have statted out Daried Selsherryn. I am really interested to hear how his levels are broken up. If you are too busy at this juncture to do so, could you at least tell me (well, us) what his golden armor is in all its gaming glory, and about his thinblade? Thank you again, Mr. Baker. I have to say in truth that of everything I have read Realms-wise in 3e and 3.5, that this short story of yours has been the best.


Reply author: Purple Dragon Knight
Replied on: 18 Jan 2007 04:55:18
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by RichardBaker

The fey'ri at +3 is probably suffering a bit. We've learned that level adjustment is not very good "game tech" and often leads to characters that just can't be played as PCs (or that compare badly against other critters of similar LA). If you're talking about a NPC, well, it's not important. But if you want to play this guy as a PC, then I think I wouldn't give away more than a couple of points of natural armor. (And how do you balance it against DR 10, anyway? How much natural armor is worth -10 damage per hit?)

Hi Rich, thanks for your input here.

The more I compare LA +X races to regular races in terms of playability, the more I agree with you. I have 'subconsciously' moved away from LA races when I am lucky enough to find the time to be a player on someone else's campaign (I can't stand the class level loss, especially if I play a spellcaster).

I've been thinkering with a few housespun fixes for LA +X races:

1. if you keep the LA system as is, treat the Level Adjustment as Hit Dice for feats or PrCs that say, lets you improve caster level by a certain amount 'up to your HD' (i.e. practiced spellcaster feat would now become very useful to drow and feyri; Abjurant Champion PrC makes your caster level equal to your BAB... just treat each LA pluses as a 'virtual' BAB+1...)

2. instead of a LA, the player can opt for an XP penalty (i.e. LA+1 = 10% XP penaly; +2 = 20%; +3 = 30%). This gives a good fighting chance to a low level party, and when the LA+3 guy trails two or three levels behind, the XP calculation method takes care of 'bringing that guy back into the fold' by dishing more XP to him compared to the rest of the party (i.e. if you're using the correct way to calculate XP, which calculate the total XP for ALL critters encountered for EACH PC's level - if they vary - then divide by the number of PCs)

3. develop a feat called 'Buy Back LA' with Special: this feat can be taken more than once; each time you take it your Level Adjustment is reduced by 1.

Option 3 is most likely the most balanced of all options I've come up with, as a feat is probably equivalent to an ability granting you a LA +1.

Thoughts?


Reply author: KnightErrantJR
Replied on: 19 Jan 2007 06:31:03
Message:

Rich, I know that this question came up on WOTC's site, so I thought I would throw this out there, but according to Sage Advice in Dragon Magazine #352, Aasimaar, Tiefling, and Genasi do get proficiency in martial weapons according to their "outsider" type.

With that out of the way, I have a more subjective question to ask, about one of your characters. It has to do with how Araevin would react to another Realms character. How would Araevin react to Galaeron Nimhedu arriving in Myth Drannor offering to help rebuild the city and the mythal? I don't know that he would, but given that Galaeron helped repair Evereska's Mythal, I just wondered what would happen and how Araevin would react to him.

Thanks Rich.


Reply author: Purple Dragon Knight
Replied on: 19 Jan 2007 18:53:20
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by KnightErrantJR

Rich, I know that this question came up on WOTC's site, so I thought I would throw this out there, but according to Sage Advice in Dragon Magazine #352, Aasimaar, Tiefling, and Genasi do get proficiency in martial weapons according to their "outsider" type.
I knew it! [gloating]
Why? because the martial weapons proficiency is an outsider trait, not a feature... again, as per SRD:

Outsider Type: An outsider is at least partially composed of the essence (but not necessarily the material) of some plane other than the Material Plane. Some creatures start out as some other type and become outsiders when they attain a higher (or lower) state of spiritual existence.
Features: An outsider has the following features.
—8-sided Hit Dice.
—Base attack bonus equal to total Hit Dice (as fighter).
—Good Fortitude, Reflex, and Will saves.
—Skill points equal to (8 + Int modifier, minimum 1) per Hit Die, with quadruple skill points for the first Hit Die.
Traits: An outsider possesses the following traits (unless otherwise noted in a creature’s entry).
—Darkvision out to 60 feet.
—Unlike most other living creatures, an outsider does not have a dual nature—its soul and body form one unit. When an outsider is slain, no soul is set loose. Spells that restore souls to their bodies, such as raise dead, reincarnate, and resurrection, don’t work on an outsider. It takes a different magical effect, such as limited wish, wish, miracle, or true resurrection to restore it to life. An outsider with the native subtype can be raised, reincarnated, or resurrected just as other living creatures can be.
—Proficient with all simple and martial weapons and any weapons mentioned in its entry.
—Proficient with whatever type of armor (light, medium, or heavy) it is described as wearing, as well as all lighter types. Outsiders not indicated as wearing armor are not proficient with armor. Outsiders are proficient with shields if they are proficient with any form of armor.
—Outsiders breathe, but do not need to eat or sleep (although they can do so if they wish). Native outsiders breathe, eat, and sleep.


Reply author: koz
Replied on: 21 Jan 2007 06:38:21
Message:

Greetings Mr. Baker
I read City of Ravens several years ago and was blown away. I loved the character of Jack Ravenswild. The story and plot were outstanding. To this day this novel remains my favorite Forgotten Realms novel and one of my favorite novels in general. I recommend it to everyone who loves a good character driven story. Congratulations on your continued success.


Reply author: Penknight
Replied on: 21 Jan 2007 08:59:03
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Purple Dragon Knight

quote:
Originally posted by RichardBaker

The fey'ri at +3 is probably suffering a bit. We've learned that level adjustment is not very good "game tech" and often leads to characters that just can't be played as PCs (or that compare badly against other critters of similar LA). If you're talking about a NPC, well, it's not important. But if you want to play this guy as a PC, then I think I wouldn't give away more than a couple of points of natural armor. (And how do you balance it against DR 10, anyway? How much natural armor is worth -10 damage per hit?)

Hi Rich, thanks for your input here.

The more I compare LA +X races to regular races in terms of playability, the more I agree with you. I have 'subconsciously' moved away from LA races when I am lucky enough to find the time to be a player on someone else's campaign (I can't stand the class level loss, especially if I play a spellcaster).

I've been thinkering with a few housespun fixes for LA +X races:

1. if you keep the LA system as is, treat the Level Adjustment as Hit Dice for feats or PrCs that say, lets you improve caster level by a certain amount 'up to your HD' (i.e. practiced spellcaster feat would now become very useful to drow and feyri; Abjurant Champion PrC makes your caster level equal to your BAB... just treat each LA pluses as a 'virtual' BAB+1...)

2. instead of a LA, the player can opt for an XP penalty (i.e. LA+1 = 10% XP penaly; +2 = 20%; +3 = 30%). This gives a good fighting chance to a low level party, and when the LA+3 guy trails two or three levels behind, the XP calculation method takes care of 'bringing that guy back into the fold' by dishing more XP to him compared to the rest of the party (i.e. if you're using the correct way to calculate XP, which calculate the total XP for ALL critters encountered for EACH PC's level - if they vary - then divide by the number of PCs)

3. develop a feat called 'Buy Back LA' with Special: this feat can be taken more than once; each time you take it your Level Adjustment is reduced by 1.

Option 3 is most likely the most balanced of all options I've come up with, as a feat is probably equivalent to an ability granting you a LA +1.

Thoughts?

Hey, PDK. Have you tried the LA Buyoff from Unearthed Arcana? I have used it myself, and it worked out rather well. It sort of reminded me of 2nd Edition's slow advancement charts.

I like your house rules, by the way. Just sort of thought that you might want to give the UA rules a go if you hadn't already...


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 22 Jan 2007 21:37:15
Message:

Oh, I know what the type description in the Monster Manual says. But I don't think it's the *right* answer. Aasimar, etc., type-based martial weapon proficiency is an unintended consequence of the rule. I know that when we wrote those type descriptions we weren't looking to give aasimar clerics longswords. We were looking to give hezrous and planetars battle axes, if the DM wanted to kit up a unique baddy for his game.

So why did the Sage make that call, when it wasn't what we intended? In general, we don't admit minor stuff like this is wrong and designate it as errata. After all, your aasimar cleric could have easily spent a feat or picked the right domain or multiclassed to get his longsword proficiency, and all it does is add about 0.22 points of damage per round to his melee attacks. So, rather than go to the trouble of calling the type description wrong, the Sage chose not to suggest unnecessary errata.

Regarding Araevin and Galaeron... well, Araevin certainly understands what it means to be misunderstood and to pay a price for power. I think he wouldn't judge Galaeron too harshly.


quote:
Originally posted by KnightErrantJR

Rich, I know that this question came up on WOTC's site, so I thought I would throw this out there, but according to Sage Advice in Dragon Magazine #352, Aasimaar, Tiefling, and Genasi do get proficiency in martial weapons according to their "outsider" type.

With that out of the way, I have a more subjective question to ask, about one of your characters. It has to do with how Araevin would react to another Realms character. How would Araevin react to Galaeron Nimhedu arriving in Myth Drannor offering to help rebuild the city and the mythal? I don't know that he would, but given that Galaeron helped repair Evereska's Mythal, I just wondered what would happen and how Araevin would react to him.

Thanks Rich.


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 22 Jan 2007 21:39:38
Message:

Thank you! Of the books I've written, City of Ravens is probably my favorite too.


quote:
Originally posted by koz

Greetings Mr. Baker
I read City of Ravens several years ago and was blown away. I loved the character of Jack Ravenswild. The story and plot were outstanding. To this day this novel remains my favorite Forgotten Realms novel and one of my favorite novels in general. I recommend it to everyone who loves a good character driven story. Congratulations on your continued success.


Reply author: KnightErrantJR
Replied on: 22 Jan 2007 21:47:49
Message:

Thanks for the answers Rich, I appreciate it. For what its worth I agree with your interpretation of the "outsider weapon connundrum." Personally, I don't see, lets say, a commoner who just happens to manifest enough of his family's unknown progenetor's bloodline to be an aasimar, and on top of the "holy" abllities, he just happens to be able to pick up any martial weapon and know how to use them effectively.

On the topic of Galaeron and Araevin, I figured that Araevin would likely be more postitively disposed toward him, but I also know that some of the elves in Evereska didn't seem too thrilled with the idea of the Mythal being partially "tainted" with shadow weave magic. Again, thanks for the input.


Reply author: Purple Dragon Knight
Replied on: 22 Jan 2007 23:43:13
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by RichardBaker

Oh, I know what the type description in the Monster Manual says. But I don't think it's the *right* answer. Aasimar, etc., type-based martial weapon proficiency is an unintended consequence of the rule. I know that when we wrote those type descriptions we weren't looking to give aasimar clerics longswords. We were looking to give hezrous and planetars battle axes, if the DM wanted to kit up a unique baddy for his game.

So why did the Sage make that call, when it wasn't what we intended? In general, we don't admit minor stuff like this is wrong and designate it as errata. After all, your aasimar cleric could have easily spent a feat or picked the right domain or multiclassed to get his longsword proficiency, and all it does is add about 0.22 points of damage per round to his melee attacks. So, rather than go to the trouble of calling the type description wrong, the Sage chose not to suggest unnecessary errata.

But Rich, I actually LIKE my aasimar clerics with warhammers, and my tiefling rogues with nasty-looking greataxes!

Why, elves don't even pay a Level Adjustment and breed longsword-toting wizards!


Reply author: Mace Hammerhand
Replied on: 06 Feb 2007 19:39:02
Message:

Rich, in the upcoming Anauroch adventure, will we receive more information of Shade? Sourcematerial regarding this area have been almost(!) nonexistant.


Reply author: Archwizard
Replied on: 06 Feb 2007 22:14:35
Message:

Hello Mr. Baker,

I grew curious about the amount of communications between the design staffs of the different settings of D&D (Core, FR, and Eberron) in regards to book formats and cross setting content. For example, if the regional adventure format of Mysteries of the Moonsea performed well in sales, would the Eberron staff consider using that format? If a sub-system like Psionics does well in the core, is there pressure to include it in FR or Eberron books? Or is this mostly up to the setting designers themselves on whether they want to adopt certain formats or content?


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 08 Feb 2007 02:04:38
Message:

Well, we pretty much are a single pool of designers these days -- no one is specifically dedicated to FR, or Eberron, or Core D&D. We try to take lessons from all of our lines and spread 'em around. For example, the new FR adventures coming out this year make use of the adventure format of "Expedition to Castle Ravenloft."


quote:
Originally posted by Archwizard

Hello Mr. Baker,

I grew curious about the amount of communications between the design staffs of the different settings of D&D (Core, FR, and Eberron) in regards to book formats and cross setting content. For example, if the regional adventure format of Mysteries of the Moonsea performed well in sales, would the Eberron staff consider using that format? If a sub-system like Psionics does well in the core, is there pressure to include it in FR or Eberron books? Or is this mostly up to the setting designers themselves on whether they want to adopt certain formats or content?


Reply author: Archwizard
Replied on: 08 Feb 2007 06:41:54
Message:


Greetings Mr. Baker,

Thanks for taking the time out of your day to answer my question. After hearing about the Expedition format for the upcoming FR adventures, the combined designer resource pool was the situation I figured the company worked with, your answer gave solid confirmation to a guess. I feel this is good to know since it means each book we purchase is almost like a little more than one vote (generously speaking 1-1/2 for simplicity) for an aspect of the game we like, a very interesting consideration to keep in mind...

:: Ponders what minor but still present implications sales of Secrets of Sarlona might have on the format, approach, and content of the Realms product line. ::


quote:
Originally posted by RichardBaker

Well, we pretty much are a single pool of designers these days -- no one is specifically dedicated to FR, or Eberron, or Core D&D. We try to take lessons from all of our lines and spread 'em around. For example, the new FR adventures coming out this year make use of the adventure format of "Expedition to Castle Ravenloft."



Reply author: Kaladorm
Replied on: 08 Feb 2007 19:30:28
Message:

Rich, I'm currently working my way through the WotSQ books (loving them so much!) and I've just had to get out of the bath so I can ask you this question

Can you explain to me why, when in the tower of the beholder and Quenthel falls, the group (Valas in particular) actually decide to rescue her?

From a Drow's perspective I know there's no love lost, and with Quenthel being, quite frankly a pain in the arse, I just don't understand why they would not be glad that she was out of the picture and left to die.

It's not like she contributes anything in terms of spells or healing, she doesn't even seem to come up with any decent plans (though I understand why they have suffered her leadership thus far), that's the area of Pharaun and Valas. She is not a great fighter, certainly not as much as Ryld or Valas, nor is she a diplomat (in fact she seems to be a liability more often than not). She's not even really necessary to the mission, and the only one I can see having some loyalty to her would be Danifae, though I don't yet understand Danifaes intentions.

The only other reason I could see to keep her would be for fear of retribution when they returned to Menzoberranzen, but if she died in an accident such as that then they should all be absolved of blame.


Reply author: Asgetrion
Replied on: 08 Feb 2007 22:25:20
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by RichardBaker

Well, we pretty much are a single pool of designers these days -- no one is specifically dedicated to FR, or Eberron, or Core D&D. We try to take lessons from all of our lines and spread 'em around. For example, the new FR adventures coming out this year make use of the adventure format of "Expedition to Castle Ravenloft."



And I, for one, truly appreciate that we are going to get so many great FR adventures and tomes this year!

Anything you can reveal about the first (Cormyr) adventure? I know it takes place in the Vast Swamp, and hopefully there will be links to Minauros (which is the source of the 'evil nature' of the swamp) and the kingdom of Orva (apparently mentioned in 'Four from Cormyr').

There are also references to old elven ruins in the center of the swamp ("as vast as Myth Drannor") and I was hoping that they will also be featured in the module in some way...


Reply author: latharast
Replied on: 16 Feb 2007 18:21:20
Message:

Greetings Mr. Baker

My question (which is in fact a big request):
-can you tell me anything more about war-mythals, beside that, what you had written in TLM trilogy?

PS. Good luck with you're new trilogy :)


Reply author: Asgetrion
Replied on: 24 Feb 2007 12:25:27
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by RichardBaker

I created the Pale Sybil for the story; she isn't mentioned anywhere else. However, a couple of the key components behind the Sybil appear in the FR sourcebook "Underdark," which I worked on extensively. For example, the abyss known as Lorosfyr is a place I created for that book. Bruce Cordell invented the Deep Imaskari, and I riffed on that by positing that a Deep Imaskari "sister city" might have been the cause of the mysterious ruins and terrible stairs found in the abyss.

When working on that part of Final Gate, I decided to put on my "A. Merritt" hat. Merritt wrote a number of stories about people going into fantastic hidden lands and worlds and confronting horrendous, inhuman evil; for example, "The Moon Pool," "The Metal Monster," "Dwellers in the Mirage," or "The People of the Pit." I like to pay homage to the Golden Age masters when I can. Lorosfyr and the Pale Sybil didn't fall far from the tree.



What I really loved about the book was the atmosphere... and the fact that this book felt like it was written as an adventure (I think you could easily adapt it into a "super-sized" adventure :) and all the main characters felt like MY characters in a campaign.

The part in Lorosfyr was especially superbly written, and it felt like Araevin and co. were sticking their noses into a place that held something primordial/ancient, horribly patient and evil... I almost had goose-bumps many times as I poured through the pages. Lorosfyr really felt like a mythical, terrible place, and you did a GREAT job in portraying the place as such.
If I had played Araevin, I would have been scared out of my wits and instantly teleported out of there! :D


Reply author: Jamallo Kreen
Replied on: 02 Mar 2007 19:53:31
Message:

Well met, Goodsir! I recently made a ruling in my campaign that wizards who use the Shadow Weave cannot learn spells from the spellbooks of Weave users, and vice versa. The question particularly concerned someone who started as a Weave user and then turned to the Shadow Weave.

Ed having declared you the ultimate authority on Shadow Weavery, Mr. Baker, I ask your opinion: can Weave and Shadow Weave users learn spells from the other's spellbooks? I know it's my campaign and all that, but I have promised my players that I will always seek out the opinions of the authors and designers when I have a doubt about something. Your answer, therefore, will be taken strongly into consideration.

I thank you for all of your wonderful contributtions to the game, and to the Realms in particular.


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 02 Mar 2007 23:04:04
Message:

Hi, Jamallo, nice to meet you --

Well, I hate to say it, but I think I would go the other way. To my mind casting a spell consists of two steps: 1) gather the energy, and 2) say the words and perform the actions that make it happen. I believe that step 2 is largely independent of the exact method used to gather the energy for the spell. However, there's no reason you can't go the other way in your campaign. It reduces the value of "enemy" spellbooks the PCs capture, but other than that it shouldn't make much difference in the game.


quote:
Originally posted by Jamallo Kreen

Well met, Goodsir! I recently made a ruling in my campaign that wizards who use the Shadow Weave cannot learn spells from the spellbooks of Weave users, and vice versa. The question particularly concerned someone who started as a Weave user and then turned to the Shadow Weave.

Ed having declared you the ultimate authority on Shadow Weavery, Mr. Baker, I ask your opinion: can Weave and Shadow Weave users learn spells from the other's spellbooks? I know it's my campaign and all that, but I have promised my players that I will always seek out the opinions of the authors and designers when I have a doubt about something. Your answer, therefore, will be taken strongly into consideration.

I thank you for all of your wonderful contributtions to the game, and to the Realms in particular.




Reply author: Jamallo Kreen
Replied on: 07 Mar 2007 19:12:25
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by RichardBaker

Hi, Jamallo, nice to meet you --

Well, I hate to say it, but I think I would go the other way. To my mind casting a spell consists of two steps: 1) gather the energy, and 2) say the words and perform the actions that make it happen. I believe that step 2 is largely independent of the exact method used to gather the energy for the spell. However, there's no reason you can't go the other way in your campaign. It reduces the value of "enemy" spellbooks the PCs capture, but other than that it shouldn't make much difference in the game.


quote:
Originally posted by Jamallo Kreen

Well met, Goodsir! I recently made a ruling in my campaign that wizards who use the Shadow Weave cannot learn spells from the spellbooks of Weave users, and vice versa. The question particularly concerned someone who started as a Weave user and then turned to the Shadow Weave.

Ed having declared you the ultimate authority on Shadow Weavery, Mr. Baker, I ask your opinion: can Weave and Shadow Weave users learn spells from the other's spellbooks? I know it's my campaign and all that, but I have promised my players that I will always seek out the opinions of the authors and designers when I have a doubt about something. Your answer, therefore, will be taken strongly into consideration.

I thank you for all of your wonderful contributtions to the game, and to the Realms in particular.







Well, thank you! I may go part way and rule that 0 and 1st level spells would be learnable by the renegade, but that anything above the level she could cast when she "made the switch" would be blocked from her mind by Mystra. It is (I hope) a happy compromise. In my campaign there is, indeed, a serious question of who is accessing whose spellbooks, so I think this compromise may help to nip that in the bud -- after a certain point there would be no advantage to sneeking a peek at another party member's spellbook.

I shall proceed to my Yahoo group and spread the (revised) word.

Also, shall I take your comments to indicate that arcane spellcasters who do not prepare spells (bards, sorcerers, etc.) can learn to cast a spell from observing either its Weave or Shadow Weave counterpart? Their mojo is inherently different from wizardry, so I would be inclined to put fewer limitations on their ability to learn from either Weave or Shadow Weave users. Do you concur?





Reply author: Delzounblood
Replied on: 08 Mar 2007 10:14:41
Message:

Richard,

I just wanted to say I have just read The Shadow Stone, What an Excellent Book!

Now this is one of those books that lends itself to a sequel.

So is it part of a trilogy or series? and if so What are the other titles?

Again a really good book!

interesting use of wood for spell storage.

Delz


Reply author: Jamallo Kreen
Replied on: 08 Mar 2007 21:03:43
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Delzounblood

Richard,

I just wanted to say I have just read The Shadow Stone, What an Excellent Book!

Now this is one of those books that lends itself to a sequel.

So is it part of a trilogy or series? and if so What are the other titles?

Again a really good book!

interesting use of wood for spell storage.

Delz



Lest you think that I am only interested in you because Ed said you were the man on Shadow Weave matters, permit me to echo all of the above.

I'd like to learn a lot more about pre-modern Shadow Weave magic and Shadow Mages (ones who use Weave magic to manipulate shadows). Ebenfar and the Shadowking were rooted in Weave magic, weren't they?



Reply author: Dargoth
Replied on: 19 Mar 2007 03:31:09
Message:

Any chance you can tell us what levels characters need to be do go through Expedition to Undermountain?


Reply author: Jamallo Kreen
Replied on: 20 Mar 2007 20:57:26
Message:

Well met, Mr. Baker!

I have some questions about the article on the Far Side ... er ... Far Realm, which Bruce R. Cordell wrote about for Dragon 330 (April 2005). However, since I haven't yet figured out how to quickly post a message to him on his web site, I refer them to you, as lead author for Lords of Madness. Given the possibly broad application of the answers, you are certainly just as qualified to voice your learned opinion as are the other sages to whom we defer.

The first question, a two-parter, is this: First, "if there is a level of the Intelligence or Wisdom abilities so high as to render a living (or undead) being mentally immune to the mind-shattering effects of poking about in the Far Realm or having its inhabitants poke about in one's body and mind, what would you consider that level to be?"

There is a Realms angle to this. The big problem with the spell Karsus's Avatar was that Karsus himself didn't have the mental capacity to grok Mystryl's knowledge and he cracked under the pressure, necessitating her sacrifice. This suggests that a deity's knowledge and understanding are vastly superior to that of even top-notch Archwizards/Netherese Arcanists. However, repeated examples show that some humans can cope with deific amounts of knowledge (and not just Chosen or proxies). Presumably, anyone who had the mental chops to deal with god-level knowledge could survive the shock of realizing its immensities. (Pace, Vaarsuvius!) Bane can clearly handle it, and Cyric obviously can't. Both were once mortals, and Cyric went insane, whereas Bane merely developed a bad attitude. (Oh, to see Bane's childhood report card comments! -- "The boy doesn't play well with others. Instead of asking teachers proper questions, he shouts at them them to, 'Tremble and obey!' He runs while carrying scissors. He will doubtless come to a bad end")

Ahem. Please pardon the digression. I return to my sheep: question the first, part the second: "if most mortals cannot handle god-knowledge, but some can, may we safely infer that some deities can handle Far Realm experiences and some can't? Would that be a reflection of their Intelligence, Wisdom, Divine Rank, class levels, or portfolios and domains?"

The second question is, I trust, simpler: "are aberrations, and those who have monstrous feats which muddle their minds with an alien mind-set when they are probed by other beings, immune to the mind-shattering effects of the Far Realm?" Its corollary: "if some monstrous beings are immune to the insanity caused by the Far Realm, which are they?"

The second question has implications for all D&D campaigns which incorporate intrusions from the Far Realm, but for those following the Age of Worms adventure path, my questions are particularly relevant to the show-down with Kyuss. He is immune to mind-effecting magics (as are many deities), and he is an aberration himself. The thrust of my questions is this: "Is the Far Realm so unspeakably awful that it supersedes normal D&D rules, affecting those who are 'normally' immune to mind-affecting magic or effects, and are Cerebrotic spells so horrendously abnormal that they can effect those who would 'normally' be immune to all magic less than Epic? Might an Alienist with Cerebrotic spells, for example, prevail against mighty beings who would be otherwise immune to the magic of 'normal' space-time?"

If Cthulhu calls, are 'normal' gods unafraid to pick up the white courtesy telephone and take his call? Are his most powerful minions (or those of other eldritch, capital-"E" Evils) able to scorn the gods themselves because of the magic of madness which they wield?

I have noticed that Toril's EEEs (Elder Elemental Evils) and some deities from other pantheons are so abominable that it requires many deities (and sometimes whole pantheons) to subdue or imprison them, and trickery must often be used to trap them. Such entities include the Dragonking (Marco Volo's buddy), Kezef the Chaos Hound, the Fenris Wolf, Ksarul (from Tekumel/Empire of the Petal Throne), the historical Tiamat of Earth, and the historical Sekhmet of Earth (whose subdual turned out to be relatively simple, although only one god could figure it out: She had to be plied with blood-colored beer -- something those folk who were recently partying on Saint Paddy's Day might want to think about: if Sekhmet needed blood-colored beer to get Her stupefied, what abominable, soul-rending horror might need to be subdued with green beer?!).

I realize that much of this ultimately devolves upon individual DMs, but I'd like Faerun's premier Lord of Madness to weigh in on this. Having read Monte Cook's When the Sky Falls, I have already ruled that the plasma "element" can harm gods (it is presumably "thaumaturgic meteorites," loaded with raw plasma energy, which they chuck at each other during their God Wars), and I am using the 3E Unearthed Arcana sanity rules, so ruling that the Far Realm and its nightmarish entities and their magics can effect aberrations and even gods is not a stretch for my campaign, but I don't want to go completely off the deep end and veer too far from the standard rules, so I'm very interested in reading whether or not you think that the Far Realm is so far out that it and its denizens can alter the norms of a game, especially one set in a world as well thought-out as Toril.

Elsewhere I have asked people what they consider to be "Forbidden Lore" -- the stuff so bad that even gods of knowledge such as Oghma and Oerth's Delleb forbid access to it or possibly destroy it and all records of it. Given the heavy-duty magic which Oghma permitted Cyric to read in Prince of Lies (a spell personally written by Gargauth!), real "Forbidden Lore" must be so extreme that it blows even the minds of greater gods (or reveals their deepest weaknesses). We know that this lore is "out there," so do you, Mr. Baker, think that the Far Realm and that which is associated with it would/should fall under the "Forbidden Lore" heading because it is baleful to the gods themselves? Or are they made of sterner stuff? If the latter, which quality or qualities permit them to stand against the Far Realm?

Please forgive the great length of this post, but it's difficult to express oneself succinctly when writing about matters which can melt the brain of a 41st level Netherese Mentalist with a 22 Intelligence and a 19 Wisdom!



Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 22 Mar 2007 21:10:41
Message:

Sorry for the slow response, I've been super-busy lately. I'm glad you liked the book!

The Shadow Stone is a stand-alone book, although the Shadow Weave concept obviously was picked up for 3rd Edition. I suggested a sequel to our Book Department (basically "Aeron Goes to Thay") but nothing ever came of it.


quote:
Originally posted by Delzounblood

Richard,

I just wanted to say I have just read The Shadow Stone, What an Excellent Book!

Now this is one of those books that lends itself to a sequel.

So is it part of a trilogy or series? and if so What are the other titles?

Again a really good book!

interesting use of wood for spell storage.

Delz


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 22 Mar 2007 21:12:47
Message:

Again, my apologies for the slow response.

You should start with 1st level characters. I believe the adventure will take you up to about 9th level by the time you finish.


quote:
Originally posted by Dargoth

Any chance you can tell us what levels characters need to be do go through Expedition to Undermountain?


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 22 Mar 2007 21:22:21
Message:

Well, RAW (rules as written) simply say that you make a DC 20 Will save when you enter the Far Realm, and another save each hour you remain. So if your Will save bonus is +19, presumably you're pretty safe. You can still fail on a roll of 1. However, deities of divine rank 1 or higher no longer auto-fail on 1. So any deity with a Will save of +19 or better is effectively immune to Far Realms madness, but any mortal creature not native to the Far Realm is still at some small risk no matter how good their Will saves are.

It might be reasonable to "house rule" that aberrations count as natives of the Far Realm and therefore aren't subject to the plane's madness, but nothing in the rules supports that. It seems like a okay use of Rule Zero to me, though.

* Snipped quote *

quote:
Originally posted by Jamallo Kreen

Well met, Mr. Baker!


The first question, a two-parter, is this: First, "if there is a level of the Intelligence or Wisdom abilities so high as to render a living (or undead) being mentally immune to the mind-shattering effects of poking about in the Far Realm or having its inhabitants poke about in one's body and mind, what would you consider that level to be?"


The second question is, I trust, simpler: "are aberrations, and those who have monstrous feats which muddle their minds with an alien mind-set when they are probed by other beings, immune to the mind-shattering effects of the Far Realm?" Its corollary: "if some monstrous beings are immune to the insanity caused by the Far Realm, which are they?"

The second question has implications for all D&D campaigns which incorporate intrusions from the Far Realm, but for those following the Age of Worms adventure path, my questions are particularly relevant to the show-down with Kyuss. He is immune to mind-effecting magics (as are many deities), and he is an aberration himself. The thrust of my questions is this: "Is the Far Realm so unspeakably awful that it supersedes normal D&D rules, affecting those who are 'normally' immune to mind-affecting magic or effects, and are Cerebrotic spells so horrendously abnormal that they can effect those who would 'normally' be immune to all magic less than Epic? Might an Alienist with Cerebrotic spells, for example, prevail against mighty beings who would be otherwise immune to the magic of 'normal' space-time?"

If Cthulhu calls, are 'normal' gods unafraid to pick up the white courtesy telephone and take his call? Are his most powerful minions (or those of other eldritch, capital-"E" Evils) able to scorn the gods themselves because of the magic of madness which they wield?

I have noticed that Toril's EEEs (Elder Elemental Evils) and some deities from other pantheons are so abominable that it requires many deities (and sometimes whole pantheons) to subdue or imprison them, and trickery must often be used to trap them. Such entities include the Dragonking (Marco Volo's buddy), Kezef the Chaos Hound, the Fenris Wolf, Ksarul (from Tekumel/Empire of the Petal Throne), the historical Tiamat of Earth, and the historical Sekhmet of Earth (whose subdual turned out to be relatively simple, although only one god could figure it out: She had to be plied with blood-colored beer -- something those folk who were recently partying on Saint Paddy's Day might want to think about: if Sekhmet needed blood-colored beer to get Her stupefied, what abominable, soul-rending horror might need to be subdued with green beer?!).

I realize that much of this ultimately devolves upon individual DMs, but I'd like Faerun's premier Lord of Madness to weigh in on this. Having read Monte Cook's When the Sky Falls, I have already ruled that the plasma "element" can harm gods (it is presumably "thaumaturgic meteorites," loaded with raw plasma energy, which they chuck at each other during their God Wars), and I am using the 3E Unearthed Arcana sanity rules, so ruling that the Far Realm and its nightmarish entities and their magics can effect aberrations and even gods is not a stretch for my campaign, but I don't want to go completely off the deep end and veer too far from the standard rules, so I'm very interested in reading whether or not you think that the Far Realm is so far out that it and its denizens can alter the norms of a game, especially one set in a world as well thought-out as Toril.

Elsewhere I have asked people what they consider to be "Forbidden Lore" -- the stuff so bad that even gods of knowledge such as Oghma and Oerth's Delleb forbid access to it or possibly destroy it and all records of it. Given the heavy-duty magic which Oghma permitted Cyric to read in Prince of Lies (a spell personally written by Gargauth!), real "Forbidden Lore" must be so extreme that it blows even the minds of greater gods (or reveals their deepest weaknesses). We know that this lore is "out there," so do you, Mr. Baker, think that the Far Realm and that which is associated with it would/should fall under the "Forbidden Lore" heading because it is baleful to the gods themselves? Or are they made of sterner stuff? If the latter, which quality or qualities permit them to stand against the Far Realm?

Please forgive the great length of this post, but it's difficult to express oneself succinctly when writing about matters which can melt the brain of a 41st level Netherese Mentalist with a 22 Intelligence and a 19 Wisdom!





Reply author: Delzounblood
Replied on: 23 Mar 2007 10:30:04
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by RichardBaker

Sorry for the slow response, I've been super-busy lately. I'm glad you liked the book!

The Shadow Stone is a stand-alone book, although the Shadow Weave concept obviously was picked up for 3rd Edition. I suggested a sequel to our Book Department (basically "Aeron Goes to Thay") but nothing ever came of it.


quote:
Originally posted by Delzounblood

Richard,

I just wanted to say I have just read The Shadow Stone, What an Excellent Book!

Now this is one of those books that lends itself to a sequel.

So is it part of a trilogy or series? and if so What are the other titles?

Again a really good book!

interesting use of wood for spell storage.

Delz






Arrrgh!!!!

A stand alone!


*incohearant gibberings*


Please could you, would you try Wotc again!

Delz


Reply author: Jamallo Kreen
Replied on: 24 Mar 2007 18:31:15
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by RichardBaker

Well, RAW (rules as written) simply say that you make a DC 20 Will save when you enter the Far Realm, and another save each hour you remain. So if your Will save bonus is +19, presumably you're pretty safe. You can still fail on a roll of 1. However, deities of divine rank 1 or higher no longer auto-fail on 1. So any deity with a Will save of +19 or better is effectively immune to Far Realms madness, but any mortal creature not native to the Far Realm is still at some small risk no matter how good their Will saves are.

It might be reasonable to "house rule" that aberrations count as natives of the Far Realm and therefore aren't subject to the plane's madness, but nothing in the rules supports that. It seems like a okay use of Rule Zero to me, though.

* Snipped quote *

quote:
Originally posted by Jamallo Kreen

Well met, Mr. Baker!


(snip)

Please forgive the great length of this post, but it's difficult to express oneself succinctly when writing about matters which can melt the brain of a 41st level Netherese Mentalist with a 22 Intelligence and a 19 Wisdom!







That's why you write the rules and I just buy them. A few minutes of thoughtful study would have revealed those (obvious to everyone but me!) answers and saved you me the trouble of writing that post and you the trouble of reading it.

I am enlightened. Thank you. I will now go ask my dog about his Buddha nature....



Reply author: Jamallo Kreen
Replied on: 30 Mar 2007 18:40:59
Message:

My enlightenment now lapses.

I got Dungeons & Dragons for Dummies yesterday (hey! -- it was well-reviewed in Dragon!) and ran across the following sentence on pp 344-345 which left me totally confused: {Re:sleep} "In fact, many players with sorcerer characters use their 4th-level spell swap to chuck sleep and learn something else." I don't understand that at all. I can't find a reference anywhere to 4th-level sorcerers being able to abandon one spell and take up another. Admittedly my players and I run wizards and not sorcerers, but I don't think I'd miss something as (seemingly) obvious as a caster being able to unlearn a spell and learn a new one. Or would I?

Richard, sir, what, pray, didst thou mean? (If it's just a rule I've overlooked, a simple reference to the appropriate page will suffice.)




Reply author: TomCosta
Replied on: 30 Mar 2007 20:58:01
Message:

Reread the sorcerer's spellcasting section in the 3.5E PH. They can swap out their spells known as they get more powerful, so sleep, which is great for a low level character but almost useless for a higher level one, is an easy choice to drop.


Reply author: Purple Dragon Knight
Replied on: 31 Mar 2007 00:02:26
Message:

Jamallo: click on the link on my sig; from there, select "Classes 2" and look under "Spells" in the Sorcerer section. Bards also have a similar feature by the way.


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 04 Apr 2007 01:56:39
Message:

This is a rule that changed between 3rd Edition and 3.5. Sorcerers gained a limited "swap-out" feature that allowed them to retire spells obsoleted at later levels. When you're a 1st-level sorcerer, sleep looks like a critically important choice. At 10th level, you never cast it anymore, but something like charm person or shield is a spell you might still occasionally use.


quote:
Originally posted by Jamallo Kreen

My enlightenment now lapses.

I got Dungeons & Dragons for Dummies yesterday (hey! -- it was well-reviewed in Dragon!) and ran across the following sentence on pp 344-345 which left me totally confused: {Re:sleep} "In fact, many players with sorcerer characters use their 4th-level spell swap to chuck sleep and learn something else." I don't understand that at all. I can't find a reference anywhere to 4th-level sorcerers being able to abandon one spell and take up another. Admittedly my players and I run wizards and not sorcerers, but I don't think I'd miss something as (seemingly) obvious as a caster being able to unlearn a spell and learn a new one. Or would I?

Richard, sir, what, pray, didst thou mean? (If it's just a rule I've overlooked, a simple reference to the appropriate page will suffice.)






Reply author: Jamallo Kreen
Replied on: 06 Apr 2007 21:07:41
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by RichardBaker

This is a rule that changed between 3rd Edition and 3.5. Sorcerers gained a limited "swap-out" feature that allowed them to retire spells obsoleted at later levels. When you're a 1st-level sorcerer, sleep looks like a critically important choice. At 10th level, you never cast it anymore, but something like charm person or shield is a spell you might still occasionally use.



Thanks!


Reply author: Kaladorm
Replied on: 17 Apr 2007 23:55:35
Message:

Rich, sorry to press a point, but I'd just like to know if you have an answer at all for my previous question? Just asking as it's on the previous page and I thought you may have missed it
Thanks


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 24 Apr 2007 22:43:07
Message:

Darn it, should have caught that sooner. My bad, it's a good question.

First, Valas was pretty reliable in drow terms. I think it was a sense of mercenary professionalism--he wants to demonstrate that he's competent and reliable in order to maintain his "rep."

Second, I think the others recognized that there might be unpleasant consequences if they returned to Menzoberranzan and somehow their fearless Baenre leader just hadn't managed to survive the trip. If nothing else, the draegloth would pose an immediate problem if he thought the others had let Quenthel die.





quote:
Originally posted by Kaladorm

Rich, sorry to press a point, but I'd just like to know if you have an answer at all for my previous question? Just asking as it's on the previous page and I thought you may have missed it
Thanks


Reply author: Phoebus
Replied on: 28 Apr 2007 15:22:44
Message:

Hello Rich,

I was hoping you might be able to share some background information about some of the elven folk during the Crown Wars. Lost Empires of Faerun does an excellent job (in my humble opinion) of casting some light on that series of conflicts, but I (and others, I would imagine) was left with some questions about "how things were" back then.

When reading the Crown Wars chapter, the timeline, accompanying text, and additional items (such as the description of the Iron Pit) gave me what I felt was a clear enough view into Ilythiir so as to plausibly identify them with a society "worthy" of becoming the Drow so feared in the Realms today. I also understood the role the Vyshaan clan played in that grand game, and that of their infernal patron as well.

What about the Aryvandaaran sun elves as a whole, though? How do they reconcile with their rulers' attempts and actions? Were they debased and decadent enough to merit being called "evil" in their own way as many of the Ilythiiri were? Or were they dupes in a grand power play? I'm very curious to know what their society thought about the Crown Wars and their rulers as the conflicts broiled on--especially after the Elven Court's verdict was laid down.

I ask because, as you mentioned in an earlier post, there is a negative label often attached to the Sun/Gold Elves... and I'm curious to know if they merited it at that time. Think of all of the titanic debates you could settle if only you would answer the above 3-4 questions!!!

/R
Phoebus


Reply author: Kaladorm
Replied on: 29 Apr 2007 00:31:46
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by RichardBaker

Darn it, should have caught that sooner. My bad, it's a good question.

First, Valas was pretty reliable in drow terms. I think it was a sense of mercenary professionalism--he wants to demonstrate that he's competent and reliable in order to maintain his "rep."

Second, I think the others recognized that there might be unpleasant consequences if they returned to Menzoberranzan and somehow their fearless Baenre leader just hadn't managed to survive the trip. If nothing else, the draegloth would pose an immediate problem if he thought the others had let Quenthel die.

quote:
Originally posted by Kaladorm

Rich, sorry to press a point, but I'd just like to know if you have an answer at all for my previous question? Just asking as it's on the previous page and I thought you may have missed it
Thanks





Thanks for shedding some light on that , I figured that would be the reason but its nice to have it clarified. I'd also like to say thanks for writing it, it was a very enjoyable book, amongst all the others of the series as well.

Whilst we're on the topic, and I'm not sure it happened in Condemnation but sadly I can't remember which, do you happen to know how Nimor escaped when Gromph trapped him in the plane of shadow? I couldn't remember and neither could Reefy who's just read the series, and no one on candlekeep has offered a solution yet.

If you don't know the answer then I understand but I thought I'd try. Oh and I realise it's a long time ago but I read city of Ravens recently and I 'loved' all the intrigue of the balls. I've started reading Masquerades and deep down I was hoping it would offer something close to City of Ravens


Reply author: Zanan
Replied on: 29 Apr 2007 10:31:58
Message:

Hello Mr. Baker!

Some people over at the German boards mentioned with surprise that the cambion template included in Expedition to the Demonweb Pits shows uneven ability modifiers, e.g. +5 for STR. Given that this goes against the traditional usage of such bonuses, are we going to see more of this in the future?
I for one would not have any problems, as "monster" ability scores start off with 10 or 11 anyway, yet some concerns were raised with regards to min-maxing and future products (i.e., not necessarily cambion characters).

Speaking of which, do designers tend to double-check on such possibilities, i.e. min/maxing? While I accept that this style of play is an popular option for some, I hope that for the sake of flair and background, classes/races/etc. are not toned down because of this.

Thanks in advance, Zanan!


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 02 May 2007 02:03:29
Message:

Hmmm, +5 sounds like a mistake to me. We wouldn't have done that on purpose.

And yes, we are *always* conscious of power balance issues. We often cut overpowered race or class designs "down to size" without regard to story and background concerns. Balancing the game is more important to us than making a race or class "interesting." To be fair, we try hard to accomplish both goals with everything we do. But sometimes we miss something.


quote:
Originally posted by Zanan

Hello Mr. Baker!

Some people over at the German boards mentioned with surprise that the cambion template included in Expedition to the Demonweb Pits shows uneven ability modifiers, e.g. +5 for STR. Given that this goes against the traditional usage of such bonuses, are we going to see more of this in the future?
I for one would not have any problems, as "monster" ability scores start off with 10 or 11 anyway, yet some concerns were raised with regards to min-maxing and future products (i.e., not necessarily cambion characters).

Speaking of which, do designers tend to double-check on such possibilities, i.e. min/maxing? While I accept that this style of play is an popular option for some, I hope that for the sake of flair and background, classes/races/etc. are not toned down because of this.

Thanks in advance, Zanan!


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 02 May 2007 02:05:53
Message:

I'd have to go look through the later books of War of the Spider Queen to figure that out, since I don't know off the top of my head. I haven't looked at the back half of the series in a couple of years, really.

Glad you liked City of Ravens--it's one of my favorites!


quote:
Originally posted by Kaladorm
Whilst we're on the topic, and I'm not sure it happened in Condemnation but sadly I can't remember which, do you happen to know how Nimor escaped when Gromph trapped him in the plane of shadow? I couldn't remember and neither could Reefy who's just read the series, and no one on candlekeep has offered a solution yet.

If you don't know the answer then I understand but I thought I'd try. Oh and I realise it's a long time ago but I read city of Ravens recently and I 'loved' all the intrigue of the balls. I've started reading Masquerades and deep down I was hoping it would offer something close to City of Ravens


Reply author: Kaladorm
Replied on: 04 May 2007 14:46:19
Message:

Ah it was worth a shot. The fact no one seems to know leads me to believe that it was just missed out, but the books are still fresh enough in my mind that I don't fancy reading through them all again to work out the time between when he disappears and when he reappears.


Reply author: Kuje
Replied on: 11 May 2007 01:49:40
Message:

Hiya Rich,

If you could, could you help me answer a few questions?

In your adventure in Dungeon #101 you give a list of prisoners and five of them are from one caravan and three are from another.

Could you, if you remember, I know that this adventure came out 6 years ago, put who is in what caravan? Also, could you list their gender and race for each? The article just says they are male or female and human or dwarven, but I don't like guessing on which is which.

I need the info for my NPC file.

The prisoners are:

Dreth
Edsard
Hela
Ilsa
Morrin
Staarvid
Thurgan
Welsil

Genders are also needed for:

Andremel
Belindara (I'm guessing this one is female :))
Jhovar


Reply author: The Sage
Replied on: 12 May 2007 02:09:17
Message:

Kuje, here is Rich's reply from WotC -

quote:
Originally posted by Rich Baker

In all honesty, your guess is as good as mine. Put the NPCs anywhere you want 'em.


Reply author: Penknight
Replied on: 31 May 2007 02:18:30
Message:

Greetings and salutations once again, Mr. Baker. I was wondering something about the mythal surrounding Myth Drannor:


*Spoiler Alert*




After the reclamation of the City of Song, will the mythal be able to keep out the remaining fey'ri, or will there still be a way for them to slip in (as a wolf in sheeps clothing) and wreak havoc on the internal affairs of the elven People as they struggle to find their place once again on Faerūn, the land so cherished and loved by their ancestors?


Also, another quick question, but this time about Silverymoon... I know that the mythal there keeps outsiders from entering into the city, but what about fey'ri and tieflings? Since they are native outsiders, can they make their way in?

I would also like to say thank you for your time and all of your hard work on the new novels and sourcebooks. I and my players greatly appreciate what you and the other game designers have done to "flesh out" characters, classes and races. So again, a huge thanks from my four players and I.


Reply author: Penknight
Replied on: 22 Jun 2007 20:12:32
Message:

Hello again. I have a question about a monster from 2nd Edition that I have been wondering about as of late. Long ago in 2nd Edition there was a monster that appeared in Elves of Evermeet that really caught my fancy. They were the Reverend Ones, and I have been wondering if Reverend Ones made a reappearance in 3.5 if they would be just a monster/creature like the Baelnorn or if they would be a template that you added to an existing creature with elven blood? Also, are there any plans on placing them in any upcoming game products? Thank you, sir.


Reply author: TomCosta
Replied on: 22 Jun 2007 20:37:10
Message:

It's not official, but I did a work up of them in Bestiary of the Realms 2 http://www.ericlboyd.com/dnd/monsters.html and I think the Creature Catalogue has a different take.


Reply author: Penknight
Replied on: 23 Jun 2007 03:27:09
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by TomCosta

It's not official, but I did a work up of them in Bestiary of the Realms 2 http://www.ericlboyd.com/dnd/monsters.html and I think the Creature Catalogue has a different take.

Thank you, sir. I'll give it a good look.


Reply author: althen artren
Replied on: 25 Jun 2007 17:36:11
Message:

Hello Rich, I have some questions about Last Mythral.

Shadowdale, Daggerdale, Deepingdale soldiers were all involved in the siege of Myth Drannor. Archendale did not. Were any other dales soldiers present in the final siege?

I have the idea of Myth Drannor not taxing its citizens for a little bit and living off the treasures claimed by the returning elves as they clear out and reclaim the city Did the Shades clean stuff out in return of the Archwizards or is there still enough treasure around to enrich many kingdoms.

After the end of the novels, is there still a sizable infernal population running around in Cormanthor to justify random encounters?

Will the Word of Potency or the Ritual to Summon Revered Ones reach print anytime soon? Are there any discussions for a sourcebook or at least updates such as whether or not Sembia withdrew from the Southern Dales?

Also, can you give us a rough % of the gates that are now broken across the Realms with the destruction of the Fhoeldin Durr?


Reply author: Aulnil
Replied on: 26 Jun 2007 04:38:53
Message:

I know you've touched on topics concerning The Last Mythal trilogy multiple times, but considering the state of Mulmaster leading out of Cloak and Dagger, heading into 3rd/3.5 edition, can you touch on the choice not to include or gloss over Mulmaster's possible influence/part in the events covered in this trilogy.

Thank you much,

Aulnil


Reply author: Purple Dragon Knight
Replied on: 20 Jul 2007 00:49:51
Message:

Rich, Eric tells me you might have answers about the following:

Do you know who did the "In Faerun" entries for Monster Manual V? and do you know who wrote the vampire section? I have both Realms and vampire stat block questions for that book.

(the vamp question is easy: why does the vamps' slam atk and dmg bonuses the same as their magic weapons' bonus?)


Reply author: acro
Replied on: 14 Aug 2007 01:23:09
Message:

Well met Richard, I am currently working my way through the last mythal trilogy. It is very good so far, and the part I like the most is when Araevin takes the Nightstar and learns that he is related to the dlardrageths, by some obscure marriage.


Reply author: Delzounblood
Replied on: 15 Aug 2007 22:21:35
Message:

Rich,

Which books follow on from your damn good The Shadow Stone ?

I seem to have missed any info on this!

Delz


Reply author: Skeptic
Replied on: 20 Aug 2007 22:33:58
Message:


Hi M. Baker,

I just want to say that the clan Hulmaster and Aesperus were major characters in a 2e campaign I ran years ago, I'm eager to see what are your plan for them in your new trilogy.


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 22 Aug 2007 18:18:07
Message:

Sorry for the slow reply, I haven't been around here in a few weeks.

I'd imagine that at least a few of the surviving Riders of Mistledale were present during the final siege. Possibly some small number of folks from Harrowdale or Featherdale too, but I don't know if I would count any of those as soldiers.

I think there's still plenty of undiscovered vaults (and dangers) in Myth Drannor. The Shades didn't get it all. They hardly made a dent.

Yes.

No immediate plans on the Word of Potency or the ritual. I saw the Word as a low-grade epic spell whose principal purpose was to "wrap" a non-epic spell and make it much more likely to bust spell resistance and harder to save against. I have no other details that that, really.

I would guess that the Waymeet was responsible for maybe as many as 25 or 30 percent of the random gates around Faerun.


quote:
Originally posted by althen artren

Hello Rich, I have some questions about Last Mythral.

Shadowdale, Daggerdale, Deepingdale soldiers were all involved in the siege of Myth Drannor. Archendale did not. Were any other dales soldiers present in the final siege?

I have the idea of Myth Drannor not taxing its citizens for a little bit and living off the treasures claimed by the returning elves as they clear out and reclaim the city Did the Shades clean stuff out in return of the Archwizards or is there still enough treasure around to enrich many kingdoms.

After the end of the novels, is there still a sizable infernal population running around in Cormanthor to justify random encounters?

Will the Word of Potency or the Ritual to Summon Revered Ones reach print anytime soon? Are there any discussions for a sourcebook or at least updates such as whether or not Sembia withdrew from the Southern Dales?

Also, can you give us a rough % of the gates that are now broken across the Realms with the destruction of the Fhoeldin Durr?


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 22 Aug 2007 18:19:31
Message:

Sorry, I've never done a sequel to The Shadow Stone. The next book I wrote after that one was City of Ravens, though. You might check that one out next!


quote:
Originally posted by Delzounblood

Rich,

Which books follow on from your damn good The Shadow Stone ?

I seem to have missed any info on this!

Delz


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 22 Aug 2007 18:25:16
Message:

I've taken a few liberties with the backstory on Hulburg and Aesperus, since it really was *very* thin in existing FR lore. I think most people will like what I've done. For example, Aesperus now has a nickname: The King in Copper. The lich rivets his bones together with metal bands. He was the wizard-king of a small, short-lived realm known as Thentur which stretched from Thentia to Sulasspryn (forgive me if I got that city wrong, it's the one east of Hulburg and I don't have my references right here). Thentur lasted less than a century and collapsed around 1100 DR or so.

Anyway, you'll see more on this in Swordmage -- or possibly a Realmslore article or two in Dragon online.


quote:
Originally posted by Skeptic


Hi M. Baker,

I just want to say that the clan Hulmaster and Aesperus were major characters in a 2e campaign I ran years ago, I'm eager to see what are your plan for them in your new trilogy.




Reply author: KnightErrantJR
Replied on: 07 Sep 2007 03:23:50
Message:

Hey Rich,


This really isn't a question, per se, but I read about your wife on your blog over at WOTC's site, and I just wanted to say that my prayers are with you both, and that while I'm sad that she was diagnosed, I am glad that she was diagnosed early, and that she seemed to have the situation taken care of quickly.

Best regards to you and your wife.


Reply author: The Red Walker
Replied on: 07 Sep 2007 21:29:36
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by KnightErrantJR

Hey Rich,


This really isn't a question, per se, but I read about your wife on your blog over at WOTC's site, and I just wanted to say that my prayers are with you both, and that while I'm sad that she was diagnosed, I am glad that she was diagnosed early, and that she seemed to have the situation taken care of quickly.

Best regards to you and your wife.



Our thoughts and prayers are with you as well Richard.


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 10 Sep 2007 05:39:28
Message:

Thanks for your concern. Right now everything looks 100% A-OK. Odds of recurrence are less than 5%. We'll be watchful, but it looks like we don't have to be terribly worried right now. Call it a scary near-miss.




quote:
Originally posted by KnightErrantJR

Hey Rich,


This really isn't a question, per se, but I read about your wife on your blog over at WOTC's site, and I just wanted to say that my prayers are with you both, and that while I'm sad that she was diagnosed, I am glad that she was diagnosed early, and that she seemed to have the situation taken care of quickly.

Best regards to you and your wife.


Reply author: Ergdusch
Replied on: 13 Sep 2007 10:17:58
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by RichardBaker
quote:
Originally posted by Delzounblood

Rich,

Which books follow on from your damn good The Shadow Stone ?

I seem to have missed any info on this!

Delz




Sorry, I've never done a sequel to The Shadow Stone. The next book I wrote after that one was City of Ravens, though. You might check that one out next!




Hello Mr. Baker!

In the recent past we have seen series like 'the cities', 'the fighters' & 'the wizards', now in progress are 'the dungeons' & 'the citadels'. Do you happen to know if the series in which your book
'The Shadow Stone' was published in, the series 'The Adventurers' IIRC, will be continued in the future? Just wondering....

Best regards, Ergdusch


Reply author: Trailstalker
Replied on: 18 Sep 2007 11:20:54
Message:

Mr. Baker

I've liked all the stories I've read by you, especially "The Last Mythal" series, and your short story "The Bladesinger's Lesson".

Will we be seeing more of Daried Morvaeril in the future?


Reply author: Bruce Donohue
Replied on: 20 Sep 2007 03:41:01
Message:

Hello Richard,

I was wondering if you have or can give us any more information in regards to your mention at Gen Con about the 'Spellplague'. What is it exactly, why would it effect every corner of Toril, and does it diminish both Mystra, Azuth,and Shar? Could it not be better suited to be a regional thing instead in order to avoid mishaps like those had with the Shadow Weave?

Will there be a lengthy explanation as to he origin, the cause, the source, the effects, how to slow its progression, its symptoms, please say that the answer this time around to such a possible Realms Shattering Event will not be the whimsically answer: "Because it has always been there, it just was not noticeable before", like the wonderful explanation we were given in regards to the Shadow Weave?

This is my opinion but I hope via the boards, via the emails, via the letters that this time fan imput has been taken into account unlike the last time where the general populace of fans was rather insulted by the Shadow Weave explanation and how the issues where handled. I can understand the possible wanting to demonstrate and to cater to the potential new client/consumer, but what about the die hard fan/client/consumer that has been purchasing items for many years and is the main source of product sales/revenue. Will their targetability be taken into account, or do we simply consider them dust to be brushed under the rug as has been very much voiced on the official WOTC forums (to state one example the suggestion of polls)?


Reply author: The Red Walker
Replied on: 20 Sep 2007 12:39:07
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Bruce Donohue

Hello Richard,

I was wondering if you have or can give us any more information in regards to your mention at Gen Con about the 'Spellplague'. What is it exactly, why would it effect every corner of Toril, and does it diminish both Mystra, Azuth,and Shar? Could it not be better suited to be a regional thing instead in order to avoid mishaps like those had with the Shadow Weave?

Will there be a lengthy explanation as to he origin, the cause, the source, the effects, how to slow its progression, its symptoms, please say that the answer this time around to such a possible Realms Shattering Event will not be the whimsically answer: "Because it has always been there, it just was not noticeable before", like the wonderful explanation we were given in regards to the Shadow Weave?

This is my opinion but I hope via the boards, via the emails, via the letters that this time fan imput has been taken into account unlike the last time where the general populace of fans was rather insulted by the Shadow Weave explanation and how the issues where handled. I can understand the possible wanting to demonstrate and to cater to the potential new client/consumer, but what about the die hard fan/client/consumer that has been purchasing items for many years and is the main source of product sales/revenue. Will their targetability be taken into account, or do we simply consider them dust to be brushed under the rug as has been very much voiced on the official WOTC forums (to state one example the suggestion of polls)?



Well Met Bruce!!

Until Rich answers I would suggest you read this scroll where your questions are being discussed:

Time of Troubles 2.0

And here is a quick summary from Grand History of the Realms:

In 1385 DR, With help from Shar, Cyric murders Mystra in Dweomerheart, destroying the plane and Savras, as well as sending Azuth and Velsharoon into the Astral plane.

Magic bursts from the bonds of the Weave. Thousands of mages are driven insane or destroyed, and the very substance of the world becomes mutable beneath the veils of azure fire that dance across the sky.

Cyric is imprisoned on his home plane for 1000 years by Tyr, Lathander, and Sune for his crimes. This event is what is known as the Spellplague.

Apparently many planes are "shifted" or destroyed. The book states that only the greater gods can protect their respective planes from the destruction. This implies that some of the lesser [and intermediate] gods might not make it.

The last sentence of the book says that the Weave is destroyed and the "old world" ends and a new one begins. What that means is anybody's guess.

edit: link added


Reply author: The Red Walker
Replied on: 20 Sep 2007 12:47:26
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by The Red Walker

quote:
Originally posted by Bruce Donohue

Hello Richard,

I was wondering if you have or can give us any more information in regards to your mention at Gen Con about the 'Spellplague'. What is it exactly, why would it effect every corner of Toril, and does it diminish both Mystra, Azuth,and Shar? Could it not be better suited to be a regional thing instead in order to avoid mishaps like those had with the Shadow Weave?

Will there be a lengthy explanation as to he origin, the cause, the source, the effects, how to slow its progression, its symptoms, please say that the answer this time around to such a possible Realms Shattering Event will not be the whimsically answer: "Because it has always been there, it just was not noticeable before", like the wonderful explanation we were given in regards to the Shadow Weave?

This is my opinion but I hope via the boards, via the emails, via the letters that this time fan imput has been taken into account unlike the last time where the general populace of fans was rather insulted by the Shadow Weave explanation and how the issues where handled. I can understand the possible wanting to demonstrate and to cater to the potential new client/consumer, but what about the die hard fan/client/consumer that has been purchasing items for many years and is the main source of product sales/revenue. Will their targetability be taken into account, or do we simply consider them dust to be brushed under the rug as has been very much voiced on the official WOTC forums (to state one example the suggestion of polls)?



Well Met Bruce!!

Until Rich answers I would suggest you read this scroll where your questions are being discussed:

Time of Troubles 2.0

And here is a quick summary from Grand History of the Realms:

In 1385 DR, With help from Shar, Cyric murders Mystra in Dweomerheart, destroying the plane and Savras, as well as sending Azuth and Velsharoon into the Astral plane.

Magic bursts from the bonds of the Weave. Thousands of mages are driven insane or destroyed, and the very substance of the world becomes mutable beneath the veils of azure fire that dance across the sky.

Cyric is imprisoned on his home plane for 1000 years by Tyr, Lathander, and Sune for his crimes. This event is what is known as the Spellplague.

Apparently many planes are "shifted" or destroyed. The book states that only the greater gods can protect their respective planes from the destruction. This implies that some of the lesser [and intermediate] gods might not make it.

The last sentence of the book says that the Weave is destroyed and the "old world" ends and a new one begins. What that means is anybody's guess.




Reply author: Bruce Donohue
Replied on: 20 Sep 2007 14:34:34
Message:

I wonder, if this situation will be handled like others have been when WOTC asked their fan base on their official forum for the imput, but greatly limited the method and ways for the fan base to respond, plus tell us, sorry we don't care what suggestions you bring, we have a established one way and that is it.

Yes this news is very disturbing to people such as myself that have loved and supported the Realms for over decade (minimum). Where I have been a consumer in a plethora of ways, where my dollars' worth of support has had far more reaching implications than I am sorry to say it the little newbie that trods into the Realms for the first time. In my humble opinion WOTC forgot who the main staple of their audiance and dollar power reliability has been: us. The ones that they are giving the distinct impression in not so many words, that we are Dinos. I simply do not understand this logic and I would care for an explination.

If the line was not making money because of us "Dinos", then how could we see such influx of products being developped on the Realms? Why would it be considered the Flagstone of WOTC's gaming products.

If this is a gamble in a marketing strategy, I sincerely in my opinion think that the strategem employed was flawed. Not enough energy was truly considered in who is the real audiance and the true buying power that ensures the fisability and future of the line that is slated to changed. There is nothing wrong with change, but when it is done in a manner that is truly half-calked, that is where I digress.

Much in this move as well as to rippling after-shocks the major changes that will incur, also have a few flaws in the design mechanisms in place. The rules that have been so called cannonized as to the destruction of this and of that beyond the scope of just Mystra but other Gods, doesn't hold ground. The fact that Mystra is a link to Toril for many of these Gods, and many of them operated in other worlds as well. Their destruction shouldn't be possible if only to explain that maybe this particular aspect of the God that is linked to this world is destroyed or their aspect to this world, that being Toril, is temporarily lost. Take the example in your own cannon when you had the Mulhorandi Gods situation. Their access to Toril was blocked but the essence of the God was not destroyed.

Sidenote of interest, does that mean we are going to see a greater influx or adaptation that brings about more psionics into the Realms? After all it relies on no overpower, no deity, but is limited only to the inner strength and individual capacity of the person? I think Richard, you mentioned that psionics had no corrolation with the Weave when that long past debate was originally brought up.


Reply author: Bakra
Replied on: 24 Sep 2007 14:19:38
Message:

Hey Rich,

Is it possible you could tell us the word count range for the new FRCS book? Not counting the title page nor the table of contents of course.


Reply author: Trailstalker
Replied on: 07 Oct 2007 06:31:21
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Trailstalker

Mr. Baker

I've liked all the stories I've read by you, especially "The Last Mythal" series, and your short story "The Bladesinger's Lesson".

Will we be seeing more of Daried Morvaeril in the future?



Bump.


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 08 Oct 2007 20:57:16
Message:

Sorry, haven't stopped by in a while.

Yes, in fact Daried Selsherryn (he was related to Morvaeril, but his name was Selsherryn) appears in the prologue of "Swordmage." He doesn't really appear in the story after that point, but I'm toying with the idea of featuring him prominently in the third book of the trilogy. No promises, though.


quote:
Originally posted by Trailstalker

quote:
Originally posted by Trailstalker

Mr. Baker

I've liked all the stories I've read by you, especially "The Last Mythal" series, and your short story "The Bladesinger's Lesson".

Will we be seeing more of Daried Morvaeril in the future?



Bump.


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 08 Oct 2007 20:59:12
Message:

This is a rough guess, but I think it'll be around 180,000.


quote:
Originally posted by Bakra

Hey Rich,

Is it possible you could tell us the word count range for the new FRCS book? Not counting the title page nor the table of contents of course.


Reply author: Wooly Rupert
Replied on: 08 Oct 2007 21:50:10
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by RichardBaker

This is a rough guess, but I think it'll be around 180,000.


quote:
Originally posted by Bakra

Hey Rich,

Is it possible you could tell us the word count range for the new FRCS book? Not counting the title page nor the table of contents of course.





Is that more, less, or the same as the 3E FRCS?


Reply author: Kentinal
Replied on: 08 Oct 2007 22:06:22
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert



Is that more, less, or the same as the 3E FRCS?



The default appears to be 250 words per page. Doubled spaced for edit ease.

400 hundred pages will equal 100,000 words on average (in draft, fewer pages in final print). White space and images would tend to increase page count, compressed text and/or smaller font size reduce page count.

The default lenght of a word was and still likely is five characters.


Reply author: Aewrik
Replied on: 08 Oct 2007 22:54:26
Message:

I think that's more than 3e FRCS, since they've alot to explain/update in the 4e FRCS.
Unless, of course they're disregarding old lore and create completely new lore because the destruction of the Weave completely ruined the (old) realms as they were.

I have a question, though: will the "wizardly implements" (orb, staff, rod) be used in the new FR? Will the orders described in the link below have formed in the realms?
http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=dnd/drdd/20070917a


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 09 Oct 2007 20:38:00
Message:

It's less. The new book is 288 pages instead of 320, and we're going for an airier, more readable format -- probably closer to 750 words per page, as opposed to the 900+ of the 3e FRCS.


quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by RichardBaker

This is a rough guess, but I think it'll be around 180,000.


quote:
Originally posted by Bakra

Hey Rich,

Is it possible you could tell us the word count range for the new FRCS book? Not counting the title page nor the table of contents of course.





Is that more, less, or the same as the 3E FRCS?


Reply author: Razz
Replied on: 11 Oct 2007 19:24:02
Message:

So less pages and info but for the same price?

Sad. But we let them do that to us, after all, we're the "dupes" that keep falling prey to the addiction that is "D&D". And that's what WotC is relying on us for, those of us that say "NO NEVER!" are going to walk into a store and buy a 4E book anyway...because of that addiction.

And WotC grins evilly the entire time...*sigh*


Reply author: inexorable
Replied on: 11 Oct 2007 20:55:21
Message:

Mr. Baker,

First off, sorry about your Phillies, but I feel the same way about my Yankees. I was hoping for Yankees/Phillies World Series as my dad is a Phils fan.

Secondly I wanted to state that Cyric is perhaps my favorite character/entity/being in the Forgotten Realms. I mean, what was it, the third book of the avatar trilogy Cyric was slaughtering a group of halflings near some river... and right there I knew I was going to like this guy. So I'm loving the death of mystra at his hands, as I never really cared for her nor her chosen, and I look forward to reading more about the Black Sun. Speaking of which...

"1. It's an appropriate (if grim) finish to the story of Cyric's betrayal begun in the Time of Troubles series. Time to move on and tell new stories about Cyric."

You were quoted stating the above elsewhere on this forum and, as I've stated, having an interest in Cyric, is there any other information you can give? Are there going to be any novels?

Lastly I just want to say that I've read a lot of disparaging comments about your efforts and I think not only is it unfair but ignorant. I, and I'm sure plenty of others, really like what is going on with the coming 4E change over for the realms... one request though... actually two... anyway you can have mask and bane killed off too?

Thanks


Reply author: ElaineCunningham
Replied on: 17 Oct 2007 12:18:26
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Razz

So less pages and info but for the same price?

Sad. But we let them do that to us, after all, we're the "dupes" that keep falling prey to the addiction that is "D&D". And that's what WotC is relying on us for, those of us that say "NO NEVER!" are going to walk into a store and buy a 4E book anyway...because of that addiction.

And WotC grins evilly the entire time...*sigh*



I think a concern for a readable font size and a layout is a good thing. A thick tome stuffed with mouse-type information is of little value to me. I was disappointed to have to set aside Marcy Rockwell's Eberron book because the type was teeny--too small for me to read without eyestrain. Granted, most of the Realms readers are younger and have better vision, but there's a lot to be said for the esthetics of a book, as well as the information.


Reply author: Charles Phipps
Replied on: 17 Oct 2007 15:24:40
Message:

I'm very psyched about your new stuff Richard. Don't let the naysayers get you down, they're a minority I'm sure.

But my question is "How do you see Cyric"? What made you think he'd be the perfect character to pull off what he did?


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 18 Oct 2007 02:03:07
Message:

Thanks for the kind words! At this point it seems to be the same six or seven naysayers hitting me over and over again, so there's no point getting worked up about it.

As far as how I see Cyric... I guess I see him as a bit of a tool, to be honest. I think Shar provided the real brainpower behind the plot to do in Mystra, and found the perfect accomplice in Cyric. Now, maybe Cyric's clever enough to *let* Shar think he can be manipulated, and he's really playing a deeper game with a longer view--but somehow I don't really think so. I think Cyric is still in his "spoiled brat" phase of deity-hood, and hasn't really learned to think like a deity yet. So overall Shar gets what she wants (no Mystra) and Cyric's the guy who takes the fall (imprisoned in his home plane).

We've got a couple of novels on the way in another author's series that may shed some more light on this, and other divine imbroglios.


quote:
Originally posted by Charles Phipps

I'm very psyched about your new stuff Richard. Don't let the naysayers get you down, they're a minority I'm sure.

But my question is "How do you see Cyric"? What made you think he'd be the perfect character to pull off what he did?



Reply author: Jamallo Kreen
Replied on: 18 Oct 2007 02:13:18
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Razz

So less pages and info but for the same price?

Sad. But we let them do that to us, after all, we're the "dupes" that keep falling prey to the addiction that is "D&D". And that's what WotC is relying on us for, those of us that say "NO NEVER!" are going to walk into a store and buy a 4E book anyway...because of that addiction.

And WotC grins evilly the entire time...*sigh*



Not I, Razz. I shall say, "NO NEVER!" if I don't think it's worth the money. I'll wait two years and buy it dirt cheap on eBay or Amazon.

Sorry, Mr. B, but that is my attitude and it's not likely to change unless the book is so utterly magnificent that I would be embarassed not to own it. Consider that a challenge, if you will.


Reply author: Charles Phipps
Replied on: 18 Oct 2007 02:45:14
Message:

Darn, that's a bit disappointing actually. I had been hoping that we'd be seeing a more dangerous and intelligent Cyric for 4E. Oh well, I suppose it's become a part of Cyric's character that he's really just a ******* with no redeeming qualities.

Such a shame that his portfolio is wasted on him. I suppose I'll just be content he got one over on the Triad.

Couple of more questions that I hope you might give us a clue on. For obvious reasons, I'm restricting my questions to the stuff already revealed in Guide to the History of the Realms as I'm sure you're not allowed to reveal anything else.

A LOT of questions here if you don't mind discussing the Triad breakup.

1. Why Helm?

I was curious why you chose the God of Guardianship for the breakup of the Triad. Still, he was the only LN member of said organization. I was curious what made you choose him over Siamorphe or Torm.

Could you suggest who'll be picking up the slack with his portfolio?

2. Will we see an increased role for Siamorphe?

She seems to be moving into a more prominent place because of the events of the breakup there. It's just interesting because we've lost a major female god and there's ample room for a LG female Goddess.

3. Any reason you chose the romance angle?

It was very Tristan and Isolde and a nice way to illustrate that the gods are tools of their portfolios while also very "human.'

4. Why Breakup the Triad?

Hope you don't mind so many questions.


Reply author: Brenigin
Replied on: 18 Oct 2007 10:25:45
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by RichardBaker



As far as how I see Cyric... I guess I see him as a bit of a tool, to be honest.


Oh man that made me laugh...on first reading, I didn't realise you meant 'tool' as in 'implement'. I thought you meant more in the following sense, courtesy of urbandictionary.com:

quote:
Tool

A person, typically male, who says or does things that cause you to give them a 'what-are-you-even-doing- here' look. The 'what-are-you-even-doing- here' look is classified by a glare in the tool's direction and is usually accompanied by muttering of how big of a tool they are. The tool is usually someone who is unwelcome but no one has the b*lls to tell them to get lost. The tool is always making comments that are out-of-place, out-of-line or just plain stupid. The tool is always trying too hard to fit in, and because of this, never will. However, the tool is useful because you can use them for things; money, rides, etc.




Unless that's exactly what you meant...



Reply author: ShepherdGunn
Replied on: 18 Oct 2007 10:51:32
Message:

Mr. Baker,

Just wanted to say that my interest has been peaked in regards to the new FRCS materials. I hope that it continues the tradition and love that so many have put into it.

First off, I also see Cyric as still the "brat" among the gods. He's not the clever manipulator that Loki is supposed to me. I mean, honestly, the guy proofread his book and forced himself to believe his own press! Tool in any sense of the word is the least that can be used to describe this guy.

My main question is, I know that they are ~strongly~ encouraging starting characters in the new setting, but if Mystra's dead, and there's no more Weave, does that mean there's no more magic? Or did the Weave become more like an "Ocean" of magic, flooding everything and leaving no shadow? Also... if magic is so radically different how can there be ANY "wizards"? I can understand sorcerers, warlocks, and the like, with their innate magic, but "studied casters" would be impossible, wouldn't they?

Just my 'ponderances.


Reply author: Rinonalyrna Fathomlin
Replied on: 18 Oct 2007 18:22:36
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Charles Phipps
2. Will we see an increased role for Siamorphe?

She seems to be moving into a more prominent place because of the events of the breakup there. It's just interesting because we've lost a major female god and there's ample room for a LG female Goddess.




Siamorphe is LN.


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 18 Oct 2007 20:14:37
Message:

I meant "tool" in both senses of the word, I think... Cyric is some ways is the ultimate munchkin. I can almost see him shouting "pwned u!" when he takes down Mystra. Maybe I'm not giving him much credit, but I think it's kinda interesting that there's a major deity who has no respect for/sense of "the rules" for how deities should act. Cyric might grow into a Loki someday when he starts learning to delay self-gratification and take the long view. But for now, he's far more petty and dangerous than a greater deity really has a right to be.


quote:
Originally posted by Brenigin

quote:
Originally posted by RichardBaker



As far as how I see Cyric... I guess I see him as a bit of a tool, to be honest.


Oh man that made me laugh...on first reading, I didn't realise you meant 'tool' as in 'implement'. I thought you meant more in the following sense, courtesy of urbandictionary.com:

quote:
Tool

A person, typically male, who says or does things that cause you to give them a 'what-are-you-even-doing- here' look. The 'what-are-you-even-doing- here' look is classified by a glare in the tool's direction and is usually accompanied by muttering of how big of a tool they are. The tool is usually someone who is unwelcome but no one has the b*lls to tell them to get lost. The tool is always making comments that are out-of-place, out-of-line or just plain stupid. The tool is always trying too hard to fit in, and because of this, never will. However, the tool is useful because you can use them for things; money, rides, etc.




Unless that's exactly what you meant...





Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 18 Oct 2007 20:19:51
Message:

I'm afraid I can't answer those questions quite yet. We have a couple of things in the works that explain the Triad story more, but it's too early for me to let anything slip right now.

quote:
Originally posted by Charles Phipps

Couple of more questions that I hope you might give us a clue on. For obvious reasons, I'm restricting my questions to the stuff already revealed in Guide to the History of the Realms as I'm sure you're not allowed to reveal anything else.

A LOT of questions here if you don't mind discussing the Triad breakup.

1. Why Helm?

I was curious why you chose the God of Guardianship for the breakup of the Triad. Still, he was the only LN member of said organization. I was curious what made you choose him over Siamorphe or Torm.

Could you suggest who'll be picking up the slack with his portfolio?

2. Will we see an increased role for Siamorphe?

She seems to be moving into a more prominent place because of the events of the breakup there. It's just interesting because we've lost a major female god and there's ample room for a LG female Goddess.

3. Any reason you chose the romance angle?

It was very Tristan and Isolde and a nice way to illustrate that the gods are tools of their portfolios while also very "human.'

4. Why Breakup the Triad?

Hope you don't mind so many questions.



Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 18 Oct 2007 20:24:15
Message:

There's a subtlety to the Weave that I think folks are overlooking: The Weave isn't "magic." Raw magic exists in the cosmos, sorta like a crazy type of potential energy locked up in the world all around you. The Weave is actually an interface, an operating system, by which you can tap the dormant raw power of magic to do things. So what happens when the Weave is destroyed? People have to learn new ways of accessing that arcane potential in the world around them.

That's the way I look at it, anyway.


quote:
Originally posted by ShepherdGunn

Mr. Baker,

My main question is, I know that they are ~strongly~ encouraging starting characters in the new setting, but if Mystra's dead, and there's no more Weave, does that mean there's no more magic? Or did the Weave become more like an "Ocean" of magic, flooding everything and leaving no shadow? Also... if magic is so radically different how can there be ANY "wizards"? I can understand sorcerers, warlocks, and the like, with their innate magic, but "studied casters" would be impossible, wouldn't they?

Just my 'ponderances.


Reply author: Skeptic
Replied on: 18 Oct 2007 20:24:31
Message:


Hi,

How long we still have to wait before we know in which year will be set the new FRCG ?


Reply author: Skeptic
Replied on: 18 Oct 2007 20:26:06
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by RichardBaker

There's a subtlety to the Weave that I think folks are overlooking: The Weave isn't "magic." Raw magic exists in the cosmos, sorta like a crazy type of potential energy locked up in the world all around you. The Weave is actually an interface, an operating system, by which you can tap the dormant raw power of magic to do things. So what happens when the Weave is destroyed? People have to learn new ways of accessing that arcane potential in the world around them.

That's the way I look at it, anyway.



It seems to me that's also the way Ed have talked about it here.


Reply author: Charles Phipps
Replied on: 18 Oct 2007 20:38:45
Message:

Gotcha Richard.

Do you have any gods that are your favorite or whom you'd like to write more on/expand on?


Reply author: inexorable
Replied on: 19 Oct 2007 00:33:50
Message:

Thanks for the response about Cyric Mr. Baker and I look forward to reading more about him.

As an aside, I guess your opinion of Cyric has changed then as I recall you being quoted as saying he would be more ruthless, calculating, and subtle as the setting moved forward... adjectives I never would have associated with the term ultimate munchkin or tool (although TOOL is a great band).


Reply author: Jamallo Kreen
Replied on: 20 Oct 2007 19:44:06
Message:

Well met!

Instead of whining or complaining today, I have a question about the Netherese Arcanist class: if an arcane spellcaster already has Epic spells based upon seeds which are part of what will become his banned category (variation or mentalism, for example), does he lose the ability to cast those spells upon becoming a Netherese Arcanist and selecting those seeds as banned to him, or does he retain all of his current Epic spells but lose the ability to create new ones from his banned seeds?


Reply author: Charles Phipps
Replied on: 20 Oct 2007 22:06:29
Message:

Will we see what happened to Khel's Moonstars after the death of the Archmage in future realms products?

Or is that plot sorta dropped?


Reply author: krocha
Replied on: 21 Oct 2007 01:53:51
Message:

Hello Mr. Baker,

I was wondering of you could divulge Geran Hulmaster's race from your upcoming book Swordmage?


Reply author: ShepherdGunn
Replied on: 22 Oct 2007 10:17:40
Message:

Thanks for the response Mr. Baker. I see what you're saying with the Weave. It'll definitely be interesting to see how this all works out.

I can kinda see Cyric sitting there yelling as the other gods punish him yelling," No! You can't do this to me! I iz L33T!!!" and wearing a T-shirt that reads "I ganked Mystra, and all I got was sent to my room!"


Reply author: Foxhelm
Replied on: 22 Oct 2007 14:51:22
Message:

Mr. Baker--

I asked this question in the designers thread on the Wizards board, but it may have been overlooked, so I am reposting it here.
In relation to your comment of the way the gods are to become...

With the major deities with minor demi-powers linked to them, would those who have a strong link to the demi-powers might have special powers or feats related to those demi-powers?

I'm not sure this would be in the Forgotten Realms Campaign Guide, but it would be a good question to ask for the faith book for Fourth Edition. To expand the abilities and rolls of Cleric of the Realms. Just like I expect there to be a magic book to expand the roles of Wizards and update more spells.

One thought would be some like having the choice of choosing one or more domains from the leader deity and/or the demi-power, if domains were to remain.

Also would this be linked with the new order of the planes with Major deities creating the planes and lesser powers making their home in these planes?

Thanks and have a nice day...


Reply author: Foxhelm
Replied on: 22 Oct 2007 14:54:05
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Charles Phipps

Will we see what happened to Khel's Moonstars after the death of the Archmage in future realms products?

Or is that plot sorta dropped?




This topic might be better asked of Steven Schend as he has a large part to play with Khelben's Moonstars. I believe they currently under the new Blackstaff who can continue to look like the Arunsen at will and hold his knowledge. So they should still be in the game, and my have a part to play in Steven's next book... Blackstaff Tower.


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 23 Oct 2007 19:03:27
Message:

Sure. He's human.


quote:
Originally posted by krocha

Hello Mr. Baker,

I was wondering of you could divulge Geran Hulmaster's race from your upcoming book Swordmage?


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 23 Oct 2007 19:06:56
Message:

I think it's most likely we would do this by some mechanic like the Initiate feats. For example, if you were playing a dwarf cleric of Moradin, there might be a "Favored of Clangeddin" feat signifying a special affinity for Clangeddin. But I'll have to wait and see exactly how it works out, since the mechanics team is just getting started on the FR books for 2008. (Most of our work up to this point has been story work.)


quote:
Originally posted by Foxhelm

Mr. Baker--

I asked this question in the designers thread on the Wizards board, but it may have been overlooked, so I am reposting it here.
In relation to your comment of the way the gods are to become...

With the major deities with minor demi-powers linked to them, would those who have a strong link to the demi-powers might have special powers or feats related to those demi-powers?

I'm not sure this would be in the Forgotten Realms Campaign Guide, but it would be a good question to ask for the faith book for Fourth Edition. To expand the abilities and rolls of Cleric of the Realms. Just like I expect there to be a magic book to expand the roles of Wizards and update more spells.

One thought would be some like having the choice of choosing one or more domains from the leader deity and/or the demi-power, if domains were to remain.

Also would this be linked with the new order of the planes with Major deities creating the planes and lesser powers making their home in these planes?

Thanks and have a nice day...


Reply author: sleyvas
Replied on: 23 Oct 2007 21:50:45
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by RichardBaker

There's a subtlety to the Weave that I think folks are overlooking: The Weave isn't "magic." Raw magic exists in the cosmos, sorta like a crazy type of potential energy locked up in the world all around you. The Weave is actually an interface, an operating system, by which you can tap the dormant raw power of magic to do things. So what happens when the Weave is destroyed? People have to learn new ways of accessing that arcane potential in the world around them.

That's the way I look at it, anyway.


quote:
Originally posted by ShepherdGunn

<snip>.





This leads though into a little bit of a question that I've asked elsewhere. Hopefully you can provide some insight as to where you guys are taking it. There are weave based magic items and shadow weave based magic items according to the current rules. This to me says that all magic items would lose their dweomers at first glance (kind of like how a mythallar based magic item doesn't function outside the presence of a mythallar). Will this mean that all historical magic items have now lost their dweomers? Will you instead say that weave based items still function because they have a connection to this universal magical principle, whereas shadow weave items are gimped? What about spell functions for magic items, since pretty much all spells are going to be redone (so an item that cast Y spell, will it lose said functionality.... or do you plan on doing a rework)? What about effects protecting areas (teleport wards, traps, etc....)? What about a basic +1 sword... or a +1 sword with shock... or a +3 sword with shock and spell storing...
I know you can't go into great detail, but an idea of where things are going here would be of interest to me... as it really could have some drastic impact to the campaign world once things start being added up.

Phillip aka Sleyvas


Reply author: Dalor Darden
Replied on: 24 Oct 2007 00:37:09
Message:

I thought the weave was just the method that caster's used to tap the magic already in place? Of course, that has been proven false in such times as the Fall of Netheril...


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 24 Oct 2007 21:01:36
Message:

That's a good question. I think that use-activated magic items such as magic swords, cloaks, boots, etc., survive the transition and operate normally -- for the most part. Permanent access to magic was "installed" in these devices when they were created, so that even though the Weave was used in their making, it's no longer needed in their continuing operation. On the other hand, I could imagine that spell trigger items such as wands or staffs created pre-Spellplague might no longer work.

I'll forward this one along to the rest of the brain trust. We'll want to make sure we don't forget to address this.


quote:
Originally posted by sleyvas

This leads though into a little bit of a question that I've asked elsewhere. Hopefully you can provide some insight as to where you guys are taking it. There are weave based magic items and shadow weave based magic items according to the current rules. This to me says that all magic items would lose their dweomers at first glance (kind of like how a mythallar based magic item doesn't function outside the presence of a mythallar). Will this mean that all historical magic items have now lost their dweomers? Will you instead say that weave based items still function because they have a connection to this universal magical principle, whereas shadow weave items are gimped? What about spell functions for magic items, since pretty much all spells are going to be redone (so an item that cast Y spell, will it lose said functionality.... or do you plan on doing a rework)? What about effects protecting areas (teleport wards, traps, etc....)? What about a basic +1 sword... or a +1 sword with shock... or a +3 sword with shock and spell storing...
I know you can't go into great detail, but an idea of where things are going here would be of interest to me... as it really could have some drastic impact to the campaign world once things start being added up.

Phillip aka Sleyvas


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 24 Oct 2007 21:11:05
Message:

Short answer: No, not especially.

Longer answer: I certainly have deities that I think are neater than others, but there aren't many I'd like to write fiction about. It's hard to write about extremely powerful people (hey, I wrote Last Mythal, so I know). In terms of expanding on them in game terms, well, yeah, I'd like to see more info on cool rules bits for a deity--feats, spells, prestige classes, magic items that all support the story of the deity and carry real resonance for PC clerics of that deity.

I'd like to see Lathander get a little rehabilitated, since I think that he's regarded as not quite as positive an influence as he ought to be (he's sort of like the sun elves in that regard). And I dig Selune too, just 'cause I think she's a great part of the whole setting--sort of the quintessential Realms deity, in my mind.


quote:
Originally posted by Charles Phipps

Gotcha Richard.

Do you have any gods that are your favorite or whom you'd like to write more on/expand on?



Reply author: Purple Dragon Knight
Replied on: 25 Oct 2007 20:40:18
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by RichardBaker

I'd like to see Lathander get a little rehabilitated, since I think that he's regarded as not quite as positive an influence as he ought to be (he's sort of like the sun elves in that regard). And I dig Selune too, just 'cause I think she's a great part of the whole setting--sort of the quintessential Realms deity, in my mind.
Ah... the rehabilitation of Lathander. A hard one that is. That whole Dawn Cataclysm thing put a damper on his usually joyous mood. I hear he now avoids big shot magazine editors whenever he can!


Reply author: Hawkins
Replied on: 27 Oct 2007 00:48:00
Message:

Rich, I just got finished reading The Bladesinger's Lesson in Realms of the Elves, and thoroughly enjoyed it except for one thing: The Fey'ri were allied with devils. Why did you choose to have them allied with devils when the lore surrounding the Fey'ri clearly states that they are Planetouched from their alliance and relations with demons?


Reply author: alexye
Replied on: 30 Oct 2007 14:45:42
Message:

Dear Rich,

A simple question: Will Manshoon be in the 4e iteration of the Forgotten Realms?

Personally I feel that he is THE iconic manipulator villain bar none. I was rather disappointed that he was displaced by Fzoul in the C&D developments. I also felt that the 2e Inner Circle with its power sharing was particularly strong on "flavour". Unlike the Red Wizards you had distinct groupings - e.g. Zhent wizards, Banites and beholders and the intrigue of the Zhentarim was augmented by their obvious interdependances despite their mutual loathing.

I would like to see some of that returned to 4e, at the very least Manshoon restored to a starring role in the FR halls of villainy!

Thank you so much for reading!


Reply author: Wooly Rupert
Replied on: 30 Oct 2007 15:14:32
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by alexye

Dear Rich,

A simple question: Will Manshoon be in the 4e iteration of the Forgotten Realms?

Personally I feel that he is THE iconic manipulator villain bar none. I was rather disappointed that he was displaced by Fzoul in the C&D developments.


He wasn't really displaced -- he was moved to a different arena, and then the advent of 3E left that plot point behind.


Reply author: Charles Phipps
Replied on: 08 Nov 2007 00:26:33
Message:

Hey, Richard, will we ever see a "Forgotten Realms: Manual of the Planes"?


Reply author: Kheris
Replied on: 08 Nov 2007 15:49:22
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Charles Phipps

Hey, Richard, will we ever see a "Forgotten Realms: Manual of the Planes"?



I love this idea... Even a series of Dragon articles could help flesh these places out nicely

I'm also seeing one for Deities... A column called Lifestyles of the Divine and Worshiped. Narrated by Volo, of course

All kidding aside, thanks very much for the Last Mythal series, I found it simply wonderful!

Edited for a mis-click


Reply author: Charles Phipps
Replied on: 09 Nov 2007 01:43:41
Message:

Yeah, I did a review in the Novels section.

http://forum.candlekeep.com/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=10220


Reply author: Mandras
Replied on: 09 Nov 2007 08:13:33
Message:

Hello Richard,

Some questions about the Cyric if I may:

What does the imprisonment of Cyric into his homeplane really mean?

Is Cyric totally cut off from the realms?

Does Cyric have contact with his believers (do the Cyricists receive spells, omens and dreams from their god)?

Does Cyric see, hear or know what happens in the Realms?

Can Cyric "whisper" to Faerunians?

I believe some of that may be covered with NDA-s, but please give us at least some hints or Your personal opinions about that topic...

Best Regards,

Mandras


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 10 Nov 2007 22:29:27
Message:

Weird, I thought I replied to this one...

Sarya Dlardrageth struck her alliance with Malkizid, who is an *exiled* archdevil. He took a good number of lesser devils with him, so most of the devils you see in the story belong to that faction.


quote:
Originally posted by HawkinstheDM

Rich, I just got finished reading The Bladesinger's Lesson in Realms of the Elves, and thoroughly enjoyed it except for one thing: The Fey'ri were allied with devils. Why did you choose to have them allied with devils when the lore surrounding the Fey'ri clearly states that they are Planetouched from their alliance and relations with demons?


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 10 Nov 2007 22:30:49
Message:

Yes, Manshoon remains in 4e Realms, but I'm not at liberty to reveal the specifics yet.


quote:
Originally posted by alexye

Dear Rich,

A simple question: Will Manshoon be in the 4e iteration of the Forgotten Realms?

Personally I feel that he is THE iconic manipulator villain bar none. I was rather disappointed that he was displaced by Fzoul in the C&D developments. I also felt that the 2e Inner Circle with its power sharing was particularly strong on "flavour". Unlike the Red Wizards you had distinct groupings - e.g. Zhent wizards, Banites and beholders and the intrigue of the Zhentarim was augmented by their obvious interdependances despite their mutual loathing.

I would like to see some of that returned to 4e, at the very least Manshoon restored to a starring role in the FR halls of villainy!

Thank you so much for reading!


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 10 Nov 2007 22:32:08
Message:

Probably not, to be honest. But I think it's a great notion for a series of D&D Insider or Dragon articles at some point in the future.

quote:
Originally posted by Charles Phipps

Hey, Richard, will we ever see a "Forgotten Realms: Manual of the Planes"?


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 10 Nov 2007 22:37:08
Message:

I don't really know yet, to be honest. The Grand History blurb is about as much as I know for sure. I think Chris Sims is writing the deity material for the 4e Campaign Guide, and he'll be taking the first crack at those details.

Off the top of my head, I think it's a light house arrest, and Cyric can keep up on things pretty well through his intermediaries (proxies, dark angels, whatever). But I'm waiting to see what Chris comes up with.


quote:
Originally posted by Mandras

Hello Richard,

Some questions about the Cyric if I may:

What does the imprisonment of Cyric into his homeplane really mean?

Is Cyric totally cut off from the realms?

Does Cyric have contact with his believers (do the Cyricists receive spells, omens and dreams from their god)?

Does Cyric see, hear or know what happens in the Realms?

Can Cyric "whisper" to Faerunians?

I believe some of that may be covered with NDA-s, but please give us at least some hints or Your personal opinions about that topic...

Best Regards,

Mandras




Reply author: Mandras
Replied on: 11 Nov 2007 12:34:12
Message:

Thanks for Your reply Richard.

Does mr Sims visit these forums?

Best Regards,

Mandras.


Reply author: althen artren
Replied on: 11 Nov 2007 19:38:07
Message:

Hey Rich,

Can you expound on what you would write into a elven nobility house. I find myself needing to draw up a certain powerful elven nobility estate and I find I cannot figure out all the rooms, corridors, and extravagence to put in it. Any ideas on furniture, artwork, servants, etc, would be appreciated.


Reply author: imis999
Replied on: 11 Nov 2007 21:29:17
Message:

How come Chris Sims doesn't have a thread since he seems to have alot of influence over the future of FR? The worrisome thing is that he seems to feel the deep canon of FR is a bad thing.


Reply author: Wooly Rupert
Replied on: 11 Nov 2007 21:34:44
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by imis999

How come Chris Sims doesn't have a thread since he seems to have alot of influence over the future of FR? The worrisome thing is that he seems to feel the deep canon of FR is a bad thing.



If he was to visit us and consent to a Q&A thread, then he would have a dedicated thread. But I don't know that he has ever visited us.


Reply author: Charles Phipps
Replied on: 13 Nov 2007 02:21:04
Message:

Richard, what do you see the "mission statement" of 4E realms to be?

As in, what during your tenure, do you want to focus on more than anything?

A more organic realms? One that has more detailed society, or what?


Reply author: Daviot
Replied on: 16 Nov 2007 16:35:17
Message:

I have a question for you, Mr. Baker, based on Shadowdale: Scouring of the Land:

We know that Elminster has been whisked elsewhere as of Nightal 1374, and that he isn't present for the events in Shadowdale in Hammer of 1375.

Though my players have come up with colorful explanations of where El went ("Raspberry Heaven", Sune's Domain, a demi-plane with the ever-popular Calishite dancing girls), are you at liberty to disclose either where he went or, more importantly, when he returns to Faerūn, presumably some time in 1375? The latter is something I'd like to work in to one of my campaigns.

Thanks in advance, and thanks for giving the world The Last Mythal trilogy.


Reply author: Charles Phipps
Replied on: 16 Nov 2007 18:35:08
Message:

I hope it's something innocuous like a Cub's game.

:-)

"I CAN'T LEAVE YOU PEOPLE ALONE FOR FIVE MINUTES, CAN I!?"

He's like if America's Nuclear Arsenal wandered off on his own whenever he feels like it.


Reply author: Daviot
Replied on: 16 Nov 2007 20:37:54
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Charles Phipps
He's like if America's Nuclear Arsenal wandered off on his own whenever he feels like it.


Yes, but try finding a nuclear arsenal with more amused mirth, wry grins, and sardonic retorts. Ye'd...err...you'd be hard-pressed, indeed.


Reply author: Foxhelm
Replied on: 21 Nov 2007 16:53:40
Message:

Rich, I was wondering if you could leak more about Finder Wyvernspur and his Clergy in Fourth Edition at this time.

Also with the question of fey and Centaurs, I have a few suggestion I would like to share. I was wondering if you could break centaurs in half with Ixion centaurs being a darker version of the more Chiron based Centaurs of traditional D&D.

Something similar could be done with Satyr with Fauns being a less wild version of the creatures.

Just some thought which may or may not interest you. Thanks.

Foxhelm


Reply author: IngoDjan
Replied on: 26 Nov 2007 20:05:17
Message:

Hello Richard Baker!

You said the Cwm is a place like Mount Rainier. So, what“s the place you think looks like Vale of the Lost Voice?

Thanx!

Ingo Djan


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 26 Nov 2007 21:01:53
Message:

To the best of my knowledge, no, Chris doesn't stop by here. Keep in mind, there are a lot of websites out there to keep an eye on. All of us in WotC R&D keep an eye on the Wizards site, most of us also watch ENWorld, and a few of us watch one or two other sites. For example, I'd like to keep up on Monte Cook's site, Bob Salvatore's site, and a half-dozen others, but there's only so much time in the day I can devote to web-surfing.


quote:
Originally posted by Mandras

Thanks for Your reply Richard.

Does mr Sims visit these forums?

Best Regards,

Mandras.


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 26 Nov 2007 21:15:58
Message:

Well, 3rd Edition was my tenure. I was the creative director for FR for several years, and primary in-house FR designer/developer for a couple of years after that. (We downsized several years back, so I went from having a team to run to just being pretty much me.) For a couple of years now I've been only occasionally involved in FR game product. For example, I didn't have anything to do with Champions of Valor, Serpent Kingdoms, Power of Faerun, Moonsea, or Champions of Ruin. But I've been working on novels throughout that time (the Last Mythal, and now my new series Blades of the Moonsea), and I got to pitch in a bit on Cormyr and Shadowdale.

In other words, I'm not *the* guy on 4e Realms. I'm *one* of the guys. I spearheaded the original revision team, but since that time I've been working on core D&D and other projects. Bruce Cordell, Ed Stark, Chris Sims, Rob Heinsoo, Logan Bonner, and a couple more folks have had a little more to do with the actual creation of the upcoming 4th Edition Realms products (although I advise and kibbitz plenty). I think that's a good thing, because I think it's important for us to cultivate new FR authorities here in house, and the Realms flourishes when it's got talented new voices contributing.

That said, What's the mission statement? I'd say something like this:
Create a new edition of the setting that's fresh, current, in step with the state of D&D, and relevant to a whole new generation of readers and D&D players. Keep the best parts of what's gone before, and allow not-so-good parts to fade away. Make sure that old FR hands will find exciting new things to explore and new stories to tell, so that they can fall in love with the setting all over again.



quote:
Originally posted by Charles Phipps

Richard, what do you see the "mission statement" of 4E realms to be?

As in, what during your tenure, do you want to focus on more than anything?

A more organic realms? One that has more detailed society, or what?



Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 26 Nov 2007 21:24:37
Message:

I imagine Cormanthor looks and feels a little like the woods in the Virginia mountains. I went to school at Virginia Tech, in Blacksburg. About fifteen or twenty miles away there was a mountain called Dragon's Tooth with a trail to the top. You'd get on top, and you could see all sorts of farmlands in the rolling hills below. Maybe it's something like that, but less mountainous.


quote:
Originally posted by IngoDjan

Hello Richard Baker!

You said the Cwm is a place like Mount Rainier. So, what“s the place you think looks like Vale of the Lost Voice?

Thanx!

Ingo Djan


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 26 Nov 2007 21:26:49
Message:

Sorry, can't say anything about Finder yet.

I think our basic idea is that centaurs, like many fey, are unaligned. Unaligned means you're not signed up for good, evil, or whatever. But you might have "personality" ranging from violent and ill-tempered to helpful and compassionate. So different centaurs might run the gamut from things you fight to things that help you out.


quote:
Originally posted by Foxhelm

Rich, I was wondering if you could leak more about Finder Wyvernspur and his Clergy in Fourth Edition at this time.

Also with the question of fey and Centaurs, I have a few suggestion I would like to share. I was wondering if you could break centaurs in half with Ixion centaurs being a darker version of the more Chiron based Centaurs of traditional D&D.

Something similar could be done with Satyr with Fauns being a less wild version of the creatures.

Just some thought which may or may not interest you. Thanks.

Foxhelm


Reply author: IngoDjan
Replied on: 03 Dec 2007 01:47:09
Message:

Hi Baker!

Yet about Vale of the Lost Voices appearance!

Do you think is really possible charge in that old forest? What was the image you think when writing the battle in Vale of the Lost Voice?

Thanks again!


Reply author: The Hooded One
Replied on: 03 Dec 2007 02:14:01
Message:

"I imagine Cormanthor looks and feels a little like the woods in the Virginia mountains."
YES!!! Ed described it to me exactly the same way. Great minds think EXACTLY alike.

love,
THO


Reply author: Penknight
Replied on: 04 Dec 2007 01:02:10
Message:

Hello Mr. Baker. If someone wanted to play as a Justice Archon, what would the stat adjustments be, please? Thanks!!


Reply author: Jamallo Kreen
Replied on: 08 Dec 2007 01:30:29
Message:

Well met!

I have a few questions about Condemnation. (POSSIBLE SPOILERS!)

First, did you get your inspiration for Halisstra's thoughts about Ched Nasad on page 2 from Biblical laments for fallen cities?

Second, should we think of Hallistra as a Cleric/Bard only, or is her arcane casting ability from some Drowish prestige class?

Third, did the writers of the Spider Queen series get to read the actual books preceding theirs, or only synopses? The writing style in the first three books is very different, one from another, and it is plain that one is reading a new author within the first couple of pages of each book, so it seems as though there was no direct contact with other writers's books. I've also noticed that there are a few differences which make be stylistic, but which might also be due to not having the complete text of the preceding book ready to hand. Since I just started Condemnation this week, fresh after reading Book II, I can call to mind two differences regarding Danifae: you usually call her a "maid-in-waiting" instead of a "battle captive," and in your book there seems to be a belief that since she's unarmed, she should stay that way (at least until page 85, or so), whereas she had been swinging a morning star during the fall of Ched Nasad. I had the opportunity to read that and go immediately to your book, so I was reading the events almost in real time, and the difference was plain to me because of it. Perhaps you would be kind enough to share your thoughts on indivual styles in multiple-authored series ... ?



Reply author: Jamallo Kreen
Replied on: 13 Dec 2007 22:41:28
Message:

I add a fourth question, which someone else can probably answer: what was that amazing spell Pharaun cast to locate House Jalre? The description was terrific, but I didn't recognize it at all.



Reply author: IngoDjan
Replied on: 13 Dec 2007 23:02:09
Message:

Already order my book. Gift set!
They are coming soon. I“m anxious to start read!


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 17 Dec 2007 04:26:59
Message:

It's the spell vision, dressed up a bit for storytelling reasons. And thank you!


quote:
Originally posted by Jamallo Kreen

I add a fourth question, which someone else can probably answer: what was that amazing spell Pharaun cast to locate House Jalre? The description was terrific, but I didn't recognize it at all.





Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 17 Dec 2007 04:33:01
Message:

Laments: No, not specifically. But I wouldn't be surprised if something was hanging around in the back of my mind and slipped out when I wasn't looking.

Second, I'd think of Halisstra as a cleric/bard. Close enough.

Third... in general we got to read first drafts, but not final drafts. Sometimes books changed a lot between first and final drafts, so some relatively minor errors crept in because of that -- for example, the question of whether Danifae should be armed or not was likely that sort of version error.

Now, here's my heretical thought on different author styles: I actually think it's a strength of War of the Spider Queen. Everybody writes best in his or her own "voice," and we're not really trying to pretend that we're all the same writer. Drastic differences in tone would be bad (changing it to comic fantasy, for example) but if the voice varies, well, that's a way to figure out which authors you like better than others.


quote:
Originally posted by Jamallo Kreen

Well met!

I have a few questions about Condemnation. (POSSIBLE SPOILERS!)

First, did you get your inspiration for Halisstra's thoughts about Ched Nasad on page 2 from Biblical laments for fallen cities?

Second, should we think of Hallistra as a Cleric/Bard only, or is her arcane casting ability from some Drowish prestige class?

Third, did the writers of the Spider Queen series get to read the actual books preceding theirs, or only synopses? The writing style in the first three books is very different, one from another, and it is plain that one is reading a new author within the first couple of pages of each book, so it seems as though there was no direct contact with other writers's books. I've also noticed that there are a few differences which make be stylistic, but which might also be due to not having the complete text of the preceding book ready to hand. Since I just started Condemnation this week, fresh after reading Book II, I can call to mind two differences regarding Danifae: you usually call her a "maid-in-waiting" instead of a "battle captive," and in your book there seems to be a belief that since she's unarmed, she should stay that way (at least until page 85, or so), whereas she had been swinging a morning star during the fall of Ched Nasad. I had the opportunity to read that and go immediately to your book, so I was reading the events almost in real time, and the difference was plain to me because of it. Perhaps you would be kind enough to share your thoughts on indivual styles in multiple-authored series ... ?





Reply author: Jamallo Kreen
Replied on: 17 Dec 2007 18:36:12
Message:

Well, I'm enjoying it so far. During our last game session I read Lisa Smedman's description of Jeggred's daddy to my players since they were in the process of dealing with a very unhappy glabrezu who'd been shut up in an iron bottle for an inderminate length of time.

(Side note: the Company of the Red Spear is now hiring Assistant Quartermasters. The surviving successful candidate must have a minimum of curiosity. Apply at the Stone Tower, Golden Way, Thesk.)



Reply author: Ozzalum
Replied on: 17 Dec 2007 21:55:15
Message:

Mr. Baker,

You noted elsewhere on the forums that you used the opening book of the Last Mythal Series to discuss some real world issues that were taking place at the time. How common is this in DnD novels? Another example I remember is Lisa Smedman's interesting discussion of abortion in her House of Serpents books.

Science fiction and fantasy literature is typically an excellent avenue to discuss these sorts of things since the author is free to take things to extremes. (Is abortion ok? What if the offspring is really a demon?) However, I expect most people think of DnD novels as diversionary fun reading so I am wondering how much you try to work in some of the deeper commentary or discussion.


Reply author: Daviot
Replied on: 17 Dec 2007 23:37:19
Message:

And not to pester you too much, Mr. Baker, but do you have a non-NDA estimate as to when(/where/how) Elminster returns to Faerūn after the events of the Shadowdale campaign book?


Reply author: Wooly Rupert
Replied on: 18 Dec 2007 23:44:22
Message:

Rich, the below part was quoted elsewhere, and I thought I'd ask about it.

quote:
I doubt it. I think that Mystra's death likely brings an end to most of the special abilities conferred by her on the Chosen.


I'm failing to understand the logic, here.

I don't recall Baneliches being negatively affected by Bane's death... Mystra's Chosen contain part of her essence, true, but it's an independent part. If they survived the Time of Troubles, I don't see that the death of another Mystra is going to seriously impact them.


Reply author: The Red Walker
Replied on: 19 Dec 2007 00:25:27
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

Rich, the below part was quoted elsewhere, and I thought I'd ask about it.

quote:
I doubt it. I think that Mystra's death likely brings an end to most of the special abilities conferred by her on the Chosen.


I'm failing to understand the logic, here.

I don't recall Baneliches being negatively affected by Bane's death... Mystra's Chosen contain part of her essence, true, but it's an independent part. If they survived the Time of Troubles, I don't see that the death of another Mystra is going to seriously impact them.



Thats how I had it figured out as well Wooly. I guess I will have to just cross my fingers.


Reply author: imis999
Replied on: 19 Dec 2007 03:05:19
Message:

*as a joke*

Baneliches?? What's that?


Reply author: Charles Phipps
Replied on: 29 Jan 2008 21:23:35
Message:

Hey Richard;

1. As the lead guy, can you tell us (retroactively) whether King Gareth of Damara fell from Paladin status for the events in The Sellswords by R.A. Salvatore?

2. Will we find out what happened to major (but probably now defunct) Tyr/Helm organizations like the Knights of Samular or characters who depended on them like The Open lord of Waterdeep?

Or is this past information, more or less low priority due to the "fresh start" of the Time Skip?


Reply author: Lady Fellshot
Replied on: 30 Jan 2008 06:56:07
Message:

Mayhap this question has been asked and answered already, but when was Saelethil Dlardregeth alive? Forsaken House says something about him studying the magic of Aryvaandar firsthand. I don't need anything specific, just a circa date.

Thank you in advance ^.^


Reply author: Charles Phipps
Replied on: 31 Jan 2008 11:28:40
Message:

Hey, Richard, do you think there's a place for Interloper deities at all in the Realms or would you rather replace them all with Realms specific gods?

(Oghma with Deneir or Finder, The Mulhorandi and Unther out, etc)


Reply author: tauster
Replied on: 01 Feb 2008 10:07:19
Message:

Hi Rich,

I'm right now reading Ed Gentry's "Neversfall" novel (which is great, but for my taste lacks a bit of "realms-feeling", at least in the first 150 pages) and just finished Bruce R. Cordell's excellent "Darkvision" and "Stardeep". The same here: great novels, but they don't really feel "realmsian".

Of course it has to do with the fact that all three stories play in the margins or border areas of the realms, some of which are thitherto not really explored (I suspect that Veldorn is even explored in detail for the first time in "Neversfall"). What I really like is that with these border areas getting explored by writers different from the "old guard" like Ed Greenwood, Steven Schend or Elaine Cunningham (to name just a few), these areas are portrayed as having a different style, a different tone, or "feel" than the areas that usually get all the attention (waterdeep, silver marshes, heartlands).

What confuses me (yep, NOW I come to the point of my question! *grin*) is that I read a statement from you (but I don't remember where exactly) that the 4E realms will concentrate back on the "most realmsian" areas - and when I read the ads for future novels (the Citadel series, for example) as well as the three novels I mentioned above, many of them concentrate on areas that will probably NOT see much attention in terms of gamebooks and adventures.

Do I get something wrong here? I mean, I love that these novels explore the realm's margins and I love that these lands actually feel different from the Dales or Cormyr or the Moonsea, but why going two oppositional strategies with novels and gamebooks?


Reply author: Pierre-Luc
Replied on: 01 Feb 2008 19:34:59
Message:

Mr. Baker, I'd like to know if there's a Realms-equivalent of the Shadowfell ? Thank you in advance.


Reply author: Hawkins
Replied on: 01 Feb 2008 20:37:04
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Pierre-Luc

Mr. Baker, I'd like to know if there's a Realms-equivalent of the Shadowfell ? Thank you in advance.

In the WotC forums, Rich stated that the Realms will be adopting the Core cosmology, plus a few Realms-specific bits and pieces.


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 04 Feb 2008 19:58:04
Message:

Oooh, guess I haven't checked back here in a while... sorry for the long delay.

I think of the Chosen's special abilities in relation to the Weave as something that either a) Mystra specifically grants when needed; or b) Chosen use the Weave itself to accomplish. In either case, the death of Mystra and end of the Weave would keep the Chosen from employing silver fire or some of those spell-like abilities again. You might say they no longer have "administrator" privileges on the use of arcane magic in the world. They've got to learn how to wield arcane magic sans the Weave, just like anybody else (although some are brilliant archmages and probably figure out workarounds pretty fast).

Something like a banelich doesn't continuously draw on Bane's power (as far as I know); once made, it's the way it is.


quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

Rich, the below part was quoted elsewhere, and I thought I'd ask about it.

quote:
I doubt it. I think that Mystra's death likely brings an end to most of the special abilities conferred by her on the Chosen.


I'm failing to understand the logic, here.

I don't recall Baneliches being negatively affected by Bane's death... Mystra's Chosen contain part of her essence, true, but it's an independent part. If they survived the Time of Troubles, I don't see that the death of another Mystra is going to seriously impact them.


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 04 Feb 2008 20:02:53
Message:

I'm really not "the lead guy" these days, and haven't been for several years now... especially as concerns something going on in our novel line, especially in a Salvatore book. I presume that Bob knows what he's doing, so you'd have to ask him about that.

As far as the Knights go, I don't think their fate is specifically addressed in the new FR Campaign Guide. I don't remember seeing anything about it. So for the moment it's a bit like Schroedinger's Cat; until we "open the box" by actually publishing something about it, all possibilities are equally likely.


quote:
Originally posted by Charles Phipps

Hey Richard;

1. As the lead guy, can you tell us (retroactively) whether King Gareth of Damara fell from Paladin status for the events in The Sellswords by R.A. Salvatore?

2. Will we find out what happened to major (but probably now defunct) Tyr/Helm organizations like the Knights of Samular or characters who depended on them like The Open lord of Waterdeep?

Or is this past information, more or less low priority due to the "fresh start" of the Time Skip?


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 04 Feb 2008 20:05:07
Message:

Hi, Lady Fellshot --

I might have exaggerated with the "firsthand" remark. I sure thought of Saelethil as going back to the time of Siluvanede, probably not much older than Sarya herself.



quote:
Originally posted by Lady Fellshot

Mayhap this question has been asked and answered already, but when was Saelethil Dlardregeth alive? Forsaken House says something about him studying the magic of Aryvaandar firsthand. I don't need anything specific, just a circa date.

Thank you in advance ^.^


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 04 Feb 2008 20:10:36
Message:

I really don't have anything against interloper gods in general, although I can understand why the information we've released so far might make it look that way. Oghma doesn't bother me... nor does Tyr, really. Certainly Tiamat is an "interloper deity" too, but we wouldn't mess with the Queen of Evil Dragons. And, for that matter, Corellon, Lolth, Moradin, etc., are interlopers in that they're not original and unique to Realms, but instead imported from other D&D sources. Their interloper-ness isn't that important to the setting, and they fit in the Realms just fine.


quote:
Originally posted by Charles Phipps

Hey, Richard, do you think there's a place for Interloper deities at all in the Realms or would you rather replace them all with Realms specific gods?

(Oghma with Deneir or Finder, The Mulhorandi and Unther out, etc)



Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 04 Feb 2008 20:15:52
Message:

Yes. What we used to call the Plane of Shadow, we now call the Shadowfell. I expect that mages in the Realms would probably still refer to it by the old name, and most things that used to be there you'd still find there post-Spellplague, but for the sake of consistency with the core game we'll just call it the Shadowfell in the Realms too.

(As it so happens, the depiction of the plane of Shadow in my novel "The Shadow Stone" is a pretty good preview for how the Shadowfell looks and feels... a bit of convergent evolution, nothing that was really my specific doing.)



quote:
Originally posted by Pierre-Luc

Mr. Baker, I'd like to know if there's a Realms-equivalent of the Shadowfell ? Thank you in advance.


Reply author: Wooly Rupert
Replied on: 04 Feb 2008 20:43:12
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by RichardBaker

Oooh, guess I haven't checked back here in a while... sorry for the long delay.

I think of the Chosen's special abilities in relation to the Weave as something that either a) Mystra specifically grants when needed; or b) Chosen use the Weave itself to accomplish. In either case, the death of Mystra and end of the Weave would keep the Chosen from employing silver fire or some of those spell-like abilities again. You might say they no longer have "administrator" privileges on the use of arcane magic in the world. They've got to learn how to wield arcane magic sans the Weave, just like anybody else (although some are brilliant archmages and probably figure out workarounds pretty fast).

Something like a banelich doesn't continuously draw on Bane's power (as far as I know); once made, it's the way it is.


quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

Rich, the below part was quoted elsewhere, and I thought I'd ask about it.

quote:
I doubt it. I think that Mystra's death likely brings an end to most of the special abilities conferred by her on the Chosen.


I'm failing to understand the logic, here.

I don't recall Baneliches being negatively affected by Bane's death... Mystra's Chosen contain part of her essence, true, but it's an independent part. If they survived the Time of Troubles, I don't see that the death of another Mystra is going to seriously impact them.





Yeah, but here's the thing: The Chosen don't just have better access to the Weave -- they carry some of Mystra's divine essence. That's the source of their abilities. It should be noted that this divine essence even lets them do things like destroy dead magic areas.

We know that the Chosen have survived the death of the previous Mystra. And from baneliches, we know that the death of a deity does not affect entities carrying some of that deity's essence.

So basically, in canon, there is no reason to assume that the death of Mystra will have all that dramatic an impact on her Chosen. Since that appears to not be the case, here, I'm confused.


Reply author: crazedventurers
Replied on: 04 Feb 2008 21:26:41
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by RichardBaker
I think of the Chosen's special abilities in relation to the Weave as something that either a) Mystra specifically grants when needed; or b) Chosen use the Weave itself to accomplish.


This is not how I recall it Rich.

Mystra grants her Chosen abilites and power, once granted she cannot take them back. It is theirs, it is part of them. She can give them other powers if she wishes to later. They can also voluntarily give up some of that power back to her, they cannot be forced by anyone or any God to do so. So they don't have or need 'administrator privileges' they have the power already. Else why would fallen Chosen (like Sammaster) still be extremely powerful and need to God to actually harm him?

Re the weave: if Elminster is immune to poison what has the Weave got anything to do with that? He is simply immune, his immunity is not being drawn from the Weave.

Your explanations don't seem to fit with previous lore about this?

Just wondering

Damian


Reply author: chance87
Replied on: 09 Feb 2008 17:55:45
Message:

Yes, I seem to recall that Mystra was unable to revoke Sammaster's abilities for the most part...I was thinking that he could no longer access the 'silver fire'. Think it's in Code of the Harpers, but it's buried :(

quote:
Originally posted by crazedventurers

This is not how I recall it Rich.

Mystra grants her Chosen abilites and power, once granted she cannot take them back. It is theirs, it is part of them. She can give them other powers if she wishes to later. They can also voluntarily give up some of that power back to her, they cannot be forced by anyone or any God to do so. So they don't have or need 'administrator privileges' they have the power already. Else why would fallen Chosen (like Sammaster) still be extremely powerful and need to God to actually harm him?

Re the weave: if Elminster is immune to poison what has the Weave got anything to do with that? He is simply immune, his immunity is not being drawn from the Weave.

Your explanations don't seem to fit with previous lore about this?

Just wondering

Damian


Reply author: Wooly Rupert
Replied on: 09 Feb 2008 18:12:26
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by chance87

Yes, I seem to recall that Mystra was unable to revoke Sammaster's abilities for the most part...I was thinking that he could no longer access the 'silver fire'. Think it's in Code of the Harpers, but it's buried :(


She couldn't take back the power herself without destroying it. She had to rely on Azuth to actually do it. Ed once spoke on this, in reply to a question of mine:

quote:
Ed’s reply does indeed “imply that once a being becomes a Chosen, Mystra can't reclaim from that person her own essence.” You point out that “that's exactly what is described as having happened to Sammaster: thru Azuth, Mystra's essence was removed from Sammaster.”
EXACTLY. Sammaster’s silver fire was taken through the actions of Azuth, another deity.
Mystra can forcibly wrest her divine essence (the silver fire) directly from a mortal, but in doing so loses it forever, weakening herself (it does not ‘find its way back to her’ in the normal way, but is GONE). So she won’t do it.
That doesn’t stop Azuth, working with her, from doing it (she’d probably fight any other deity trying it on a mortal located on Toril, and win by using the Weave against them).


So it's not the Weave, it's divine essence that the Chosen have. And once they have it, it's theirs -- it would take a deity to remove it, and they'd need Mystra's blessing to do so.

BTW, Chance, you can download Cult of the Dragon for free; it's one of the many freebies on the Wizards downloads page.

(I don't get to post that link so much, any more... )


Reply author: Charles Phipps
Replied on: 15 Feb 2008 17:10:17
Message:

Hey, Richard.

Will you be explaining what happened to the Triadic Knights?

My poor players and their long-lived player characters are curious how this group will go due to their membership.

Also, will there be any talk about how to "move player characters" up 100 years or will the default assumption be that everyone is expected to have made new characters?


Reply author: Rinonalyrna Fathomlin
Replied on: 15 Feb 2008 23:32:25
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Charles Phipps


Also, will there be any talk about how to "move player characters" up 100 years or will the default assumption be that everyone is expected to have made new characters?




I'm not Rich, but Brian James said somewhere that the FRCG will contain ideas on how to move characters into the future for the 4E Realms campaign.


Reply author: GS
Replied on: 28 Feb 2008 18:18:33
Message:

Hello Richard,

I just saw that your upcoming book The Swordmage will be a hardcover version. Good for you! You are a great writer, and product designer, and you deserve being published in hardcover. Also, I'm withholding any negative judgment until I have the new FR campaign setting in my hands. That being said, the Prismatic Mountains mentioned in the new sneak peak on the Wizards web-page seems a bit over the top. I have no problems with you guys moving the the setting into high fantasy (or something), but I beg you to refrain to add something spectacular just for the sake of it (much like the monsters and prestige classes in 3E). Otherwise, keep up the good work and I am looking forward to the first book.

One question: Is the book still scheduled for a May release or has it been moved? If it has, do you know when it will be released instead?


Reply author: IngoDjan
Replied on: 29 Feb 2008 01:02:12
Message:

I“m already got my Last Mythal book and I“m reading right now!


Reply author: Brian R. James
Replied on: 29 Feb 2008 04:33:58
Message:

Reread Chapter 11 in the novel Shadowdale, GS. Nothing is ever added 'just for the sake of it'.

quote:
Originally posted by GS

That being said, the Prismatic Mountains mentioned in the new sneak peak on the Wizards web-page seems a bit over the top. I have no problems with you guys moving the the setting into high fantasy (or something), but I beg you to refrain to add something spectacular just for the sake of it


Reply author: Jamallo Kreen
Replied on: 29 Feb 2008 13:13:00
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by RichardBaker


Yeah, but here's the thing: The Chosen don't just have better access to the Weave -- they carry some of Mystra's divine essence. That's the source of their abilities. It should be noted that this divine essence even lets them do things like destroy dead magic areas.

We know that the Chosen have survived the death of the previous Mystra. And from baneliches, we know that the death of a deity does not affect entities carrying some of that deity's essence.

So basically, in canon, there is no reason to assume that the death of Mystra will have all that dramatic an impact on her Chosen. Since that appears to not be the case, here, I'm confused.



Hasbro owns all of the canon, and it is aimed at us! Stop trying to think in terms of anything Ed Greenwood created. This new thing, slouching out of Bethlehem, bears no resemblance to Ed Greenwood's "Forgotten Realms," and Realmsian logic breaks down when trying to deal with it.




Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 04 Mar 2008 22:00:35
Message:

Thanks, GS! Yes, Swordmage is still coming out in May.

Regarding the Prismatic Mountains, I think Brian's already addressed the question. It's a logical explanation for an otherwise very odd and hitherto unexplained event in Time of Troubles. However, we edited the article to un-mention the mountains until we decide we're sure we want them. So the Prismatic Mountains currently exist in the Schroedinger's Cat state of uncertainty, both there and not there until we look again...


quote:
Originally posted by GS

Hello Richard,

I just saw that your upcoming book The Swordmage will be a hardcover version. Good for you! You are a great writer, and product designer, and you deserve being published in hardcover. Also, I'm withholding any negative judgment until I have the new FR campaign setting in my hands. That being said, the Prismatic Mountains mentioned in the new sneak peak on the Wizards web-page seems a bit over the top. I have no problems with you guys moving the the setting into high fantasy (or something), but I beg you to refrain to add something spectacular just for the sake of it (much like the monsters and prestige classes in 3E). Otherwise, keep up the good work and I am looking forward to the first book.

One question: Is the book still scheduled for a May release or has it been moved? If it has, do you know when it will be released instead?


Reply author: ShadezofDis
Replied on: 04 Mar 2008 23:39:44
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert
So basically, in canon, there is no reason to assume that the death of Mystra will have all that dramatic an impact on her Chosen. Since that appears to not be the case, here, I'm confused.



Well, I can certainly see how Mystra's death would have great impact upon them. Perhaps not upon the divine essence (though I can certainly see how that could work) they carry, but upon them certainly.

Further, if the fate of the Chosen isn't set in stone yet it could just be that the divine essence acts as a sort of lightning rod for the Spellplague.

I'd also assume that some Chosen would have a bit of an easier time dealing with "Weaveless magic" since they're more familiar with raw magic (in spellfire form at least) than most other beings in FR.


Reply author: Wooly Rupert
Replied on: 05 Mar 2008 00:14:47
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by ShadezofDis

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert
So basically, in canon, there is no reason to assume that the death of Mystra will have all that dramatic an impact on her Chosen. Since that appears to not be the case, here, I'm confused.



Well, I can certainly see how Mystra's death would have great impact upon them. Perhaps not upon the divine essence (though I can certainly see how that could work) they carry, but upon them certainly.

Further, if the fate of the Chosen isn't set in stone yet it could just be that the divine essence acts as a sort of lightning rod for the Spellplague.

I'd also assume that some Chosen would have a bit of an easier time dealing with "Weaveless magic" since they're more familiar with raw magic (in spellfire form at least) than most other beings in FR.



Well, yeah, I can see the impact of having lost their goddess -- but only on an emotional level. As I pointed out earlier, the Chosen survived the death of their deity once, with no ill effects, and we have evidence that in the Realms, divine essence carried by a mortal remains, no matter what happens to the source of that essence.

What I'm saying is, essentially, that there is no readily apparent reason that the Chosen shouldn't be around post-Sellplague.

And as for the lightning rod idea -- the same logic would apply to areas of very strong magic, like certain mythal-protected or heavily warded cities. And yet, it's already been stated that the Sellplague flowed around those areas. So even what's already been stated would imply that the Chosen would be left relatively untouched.


Reply author: ShadezofDis
Replied on: 05 Mar 2008 03:55:06
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert
Well, yeah, I can see the impact of having lost their goddess -- but only on an emotional level. As I pointed out earlier, the Chosen survived the death of their deity once, with no ill effects, and we have evidence that in the Realms, divine essence carried by a mortal remains, no matter what happens to the source of that essence.


Well, it's not like we've done double-blind studies or anything. I understand, and mostly agree, with what you are saying but I don't think we have a precedent of significant weight. For all we know this type of deific assassination could burn through all traces of Silver Fire in the Great Tree. (I don't find that likely, but it could easily be some type of corruption that poisons those with Silver Fire. Well, not easily, but about as easy as killing a Greater Goddess in her home.)

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly RupertWhat I'm saying is, essentially, that there is no readily apparent reason that the Chosen shouldn't be around post-Sellplague.


Well, I came up with the above off the top of my head. I mean, I don't see why Elminster would still be around but none of the others (at least a couple survivors) but I don't know much about the events surrounding Mystra's death. Nor of the events that happen immediately after.

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly RupertAnd as for the lightning rod idea -- the same logic would apply to areas of very strong magic, like certain mythal-protected or heavily warded cities. And yet, it's already been stated that the Sellplague flowed around those areas. So even what's already been stated would imply that the Chosen would be left relatively untouched.


I think there's a difference between holding the Silver Fire and a Mythal. I'm 99% sure but I don't know if there's some lore that states "Mythals have something to do with Silver Fire" I mean, it strains credibility, but it doesn't break it. Just think of it as a Divine Beltans Burning Blood(I hope I got that right), it's just that some of the blood is outside her "body".


Reply author: Wooly Rupert
Replied on: 05 Mar 2008 05:22:13
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by ShadezofDis

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert
Well, yeah, I can see the impact of having lost their goddess -- but only on an emotional level. As I pointed out earlier, the Chosen survived the death of their deity once, with no ill effects, and we have evidence that in the Realms, divine essence carried by a mortal remains, no matter what happens to the source of that essence.


Well, it's not like we've done double-blind studies or anything. I understand, and mostly agree, with what you are saying but I don't think we have a precedent of significant weight. For all we know this type of deific assassination could burn through all traces of Silver Fire in the Great Tree. (I don't find that likely, but it could easily be some type of corruption that poisons those with Silver Fire. Well, not easily, but about as easy as killing a Greater Goddess in her home.)


I think the death of Bane, and the fact that the baneliches weren't effected, is a good precedent, even if the death of Mystra 1.0 during the ToT isn't.

quote:
Originally posted by ShadezofDis

I think there's a difference between holding the Silver Fire and a Mythal. I'm 99% sure but I don't know if there's some lore that states "Mythals have something to do with Silver Fire" I mean, it strains credibility, but it doesn't break it. Just think of it as a Divine Beltans Burning Blood(I hope I got that right), it's just that some of the blood is outside her "body".



Oh, I'll agree that there is a difference betwixt silver fire and mythals. But both are, in a sense, serious concentrations of magic -- which wards away the Sellplague.

Seriously, the warding away is what strains credibility for me. We have worlds merging, gods lost to the Astral, planes shifting around, and a whole mess of other changes due to the Sellplague. Most of this stuff is far beyond what any deity could do. And yet, strong concentrations of mortal magic ward away the Sellplague...


Reply author: ShadezofDis
Replied on: 05 Mar 2008 15:37:23
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert
I think the death of Bane, and the fact that the baneliches weren't effected, is a good precedent, even if the death of Mystra 1.0 during the ToT isn't.


Well, are you talking of Bane dying in the ToT? Because that's totally different from Mystra's assassination. Since Bane was killed by Torm while in psuedo-mortal form I can see more than enough differences to make the comparison shakey at best.

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert
Oh, I'll agree that there is a difference betwixt silver fire and mythals. But both are, in a sense, serious concentrations of magic -- which wards away the Sellplague.


Well, mythals, as far as I understand, use the weave (which sorta makes me wonder how they survived the collapse of the weave...)

But I'll not really consider that at the moment since my Mythal knowledge is a bit sparse.

Anyhow, here's another idea on why the Chosen would be particularly messed up by Mystra's death.

Mystra is the Weave, the Weave is Mystra.
Thus, Mystra's essence is the Weave.
When Mystra died the Weave almost totally collapsed, it didn't totally collapse because of the Chosen (since they are, partially, the weave). However, this wasn't very helpful because the instant the Weave fell upon the Chosen they were mostly crushed by the Weave. Perhaps Azuth stepped in to rescue some of them (take Mystra's essence from them in order to save their lives) but he couldn't save them all.

It's shoddy, but that's just the result of thinking about this for a couple of days and going off memory.

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly RupertSeriously, the warding away is what strains credibility for me. We have worlds merging, gods lost to the Astral, planes shifting around, and a whole mess of other changes due to the Sellplague. Most of this stuff is far beyond what any deity could do. And yet, strong concentrations of mortal magic ward away the Sellplague...



I understand, I mean, I'm ok with the Spellplague "dodging" strong concentrations of mortal magic but what I find pretty impossible to believe is that the concentrations would even be there. The Weave dropped and that would imply to me that enchantments sustained by the Weave would drop. Unless the "Chosen as pillars of the Weave" theory could be played with enough to be believable. But I'm not even sure I can monkey around with it enough to make sense.

Yes, I'm a monkey business expert.


Reply author: Kheris
Replied on: 06 Mar 2008 18:00:52
Message:

Well, unless I'm mistaken, Elminster is badly wounded (nearly killed) when Sharran agents break into his tower looking for an artifact during the Cormyr/Shadowdale/Anauroch adventure path. If memory serves, he was contingencied into a demiplane/pocket dimension/whathaveyou. This may be the sole reason he survives the Spellplague, as he may not be around for it (in fairness I've never fully read the books, so for all I know he's back by the end of the 3rd book, rendering this moot).

As far as Mythals are concerned, one explanation may be that the enchantments are so tightly and carefully crafted that the chaos of the Spellplague (the mutating effects mentioned in articles, and a certain novel, hint at this being akin to the Warhammer Fantasy "Winds of Chaos" with corrupting/mutating effects) simply can't disrupt them in any noticeable or meaningful way. We also lack any detail on the condition of the various Mythals, or Evermeet, for that matter. For all we know, the Mythal-warded areas may appear unharmed because the Mythals largely burned out by countering or dampening the effects of the Spellplague.


Reply author: Wooly Rupert
Replied on: 06 Mar 2008 18:45:12
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Kheris

Well, unless I'm mistaken, Elminster is badly wounded (nearly killed) when Sharran agents break into his tower looking for an artifact during the Cormyr/Shadowdale/Anauroch adventure path. If memory serves, he was contingencied into a demiplane/pocket dimension/whathaveyou. This may be the sole reason he survives the Spellplague, as he may not be around for it (in fairness I've never fully read the books, so for all I know he's back by the end of the 3rd book, rendering this moot).

As far as Mythals are concerned, one explanation may be that the enchantments are so tightly and carefully crafted that the chaos of the Spellplague (the mutating effects mentioned in articles, and a certain novel, hint at this being akin to the Warhammer Fantasy "Winds of Chaos" with corrupting/mutating effects) simply can't disrupt them in any noticeable or meaningful way. We also lack any detail on the condition of the various Mythals, or Evermeet, for that matter. For all we know, the Mythal-warded areas may appear unharmed because the Mythals largely burned out by countering or dampening the effects of the Spellplague.



It's flat-out stated that the Sellplague flowed around those areas. "Places guarded by powerful, persistent magical wards were largely unharmed; the Spellplague flowed around mythals and other such mighty enchantments." http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=dnd/drfe/20080111a

And either way, we still have a magical effect that does things the gods couldn't do, and yet it is affected by mortal magic.


Reply author: Kheris
Replied on: 06 Mar 2008 18:57:58
Message:

Hmm... Forgot about that line of text, I'm glad you pointed it out so I can alter the course of my brainstorming/theorizing.

New theory:

Must've been platypi. Only something with a pouch, duckbill, and venomous barbs could alter or abate the Spellplague.

PS: Mr. Baker, if you could drop a tiny hint we would appreciate it


Reply author: ShadezofDis
Replied on: 06 Mar 2008 20:05:24
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly RupertAnd either way, we still have a magical effect that does things the gods couldn't do, and yet it is affected by mortal magic.


Which, if it's (said mortal magic) dependent upon the weave, shouldn't actually be there, unless I'm missing something.


Reply author: krocha
Replied on: 20 Apr 2008 22:54:27
Message:

Hey Mr. Baker,

Any word on if the Fey'ri will make it into 4e and if so will they be PC playable (at least at some level, possibly like a Monster Manual PC playable race?)

Thanks...


Reply author: Dalor Darden
Replied on: 22 Apr 2008 05:54:44
Message:

Hey Rich,

Can you give us any additional information related to your "Tribes of Thar" article and the map included concerning:

Bone Tower

Rosestone Abbey

Wailing Tower

Thanks for your time!


Reply author: sfdragon
Replied on: 24 Apr 2008 04:30:29
Message:

did malkazid kick the bucker permanently when that place collapsed ?


Reply author: BARDOBARBAROS
Replied on: 07 May 2008 19:27:17
Message:

The release of Swordmage in Hardcover version is a very positive thing !!! I hope Wizards will continue publishing in Hardcover all the upcoming novels of R.baker!!


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 08 May 2008 20:15:39
Message:

Sorry for the long delay, haven't been by in a while!

I expect there are still a few fey'ri skulking about in the world, but I don't think we've gotten to a monster description for them yet (and I know we haven't done a PC-playable version). So, not yet, but we haven't deliberately excised them from the setting. We just haven't talked about them yet.



quote:
Originally posted by krocha

Hey Mr. Baker,

Any word on if the Fey'ri will make it into 4e and if so will they be PC playable (at least at some level, possibly like a Monster Manual PC playable race?)

Thanks...


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 08 May 2008 20:22:23
Message:

One of the things I did for my Blades of the Moonsea series is fill in a lot of pretty blank history for some of the northern shore cities--Thentia, Hulburg, and Sulasspryn. I also revisited some of the lore from the old 2e Moonsea product and decided to give it a little bit of a fresh take. For example, I came up with the idea that the lich Aesperus was not a defender of Hulburg entombed under the town, as previously reported, but was instead a would-be tyrant who forged his own little kingdom in the area back around 1050 DR or so. This kingdom was known as Thentur (capital Thentia). Aesperus held the area as an ever-nastier necromancer king until the clerics of Lathander organized a rebellion against his tyrannical rule and led the people of the kingdom in deposing him. Rosestone Abbey is an old Lathanderite temple dating back to those days, now home to a small order of Amaunatorian friars. The Wailing Tower was Aesperus's final fortress, a small castle in the foothills of the Galena Mountains northeast of Hulburg.

How's that? There's more to the story in my novel Swordmage!


quote:
Originally posted by Dalor Darden

Hey Rich,

Can you give us any additional information related to your "Tribes of Thar" article and the map included concerning:

Bone Tower

Rosestone Abbey

Wailing Tower

Thanks for your time!


Reply author: RichardBaker
Replied on: 08 May 2008 20:24:27
Message:

I don't think so, but I think he was very badly wounded and thrown into a dimensional vortex that he might not escape for centuries. In other words, I don't have any plans to write about him again, but if someone else wanted to, I wouldn't say no...

quote:
Originally posted by sfdragon

did malkazid kick the bucker permanently when that place collapsed ?


Reply author: Dalor Darden
Replied on: 09 May 2008 01:21:09
Message:

Excellent! Look forward to the book.

quote:
Originally posted by RichardBaker

One of the things I did for my Blades of the Moonsea series is fill in a lot of pretty blank history for some of the northern shore cities--Thentia, Hulburg, and Sulasspryn. I also revisited some of the lore from the old 2e Moonsea product and decided to give it a little bit of a fresh take. For example, I came up with the idea that the lich Aesperus was not a defender of Hulburg entombed under the town, as previously reported, but was instead a would-be tyrant who forged his own little kingdom in the area back around 1050 DR or so. This kingdom was known as Thentur (capital Thentia). Aesperus held the area as an ever-nastier necromancer king until the clerics of Lathander organized a rebellion against his tyrannical rule and led the people of the kingdom in deposing him. Rosestone Abbey is an old Lathanderite temple dating back to those days, now home to a small order of Amaunatorian friars. The Wailing Tower was Aesperus's final fortress, a small castle in the foothills of the Galena Mountains northeast of Hulburg.

How's that? There's more to the story in my novel Swordmage!


quote:
Originally posted by Dalor Darden

Hey Rich,

Can you give us any additional information related to your "Tribes of Thar" article and the map included concerning:

Bone Tower

Rosestone Abbey

Wailing Tower

Thanks for your time!




Reply author: Afetbinttuzani
Replied on: 10 May 2008 14:58:40
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert
It's flat-out stated that the Sellplague flowed around those areas.

I think you may have serendipitously happened upon what truly ails Realms these days.
Afet


Reply author: Karzak
Replied on: 10 May 2008 15:32:04
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Afetbinttuzani

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert
It's flat-out stated that the Sellplague flowed around those areas.

I think you may have serendipitously happened upon what truly ails Realms these days.
Afet



That? Wooly intentionally spells it that way, I'm pretty sure.


Reply author: Afetbinttuzani
Replied on: 10 May 2008 16:06:00
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Karzak

quote:
Originally posted by Afetbinttuzani

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert
It's flat-out stated that the Sellplague flowed around those areas.

I think you may have serendipitously happened upon what truly ails Realms these days.
Afet



That? Wooly intentionally spells it that way, I'm pretty sure.


Perhaps your right, and he does sell it that way on purpose. But if he does spell the word sell that way intentionally, his spelling the word sell is inconsistent, so that it does not appear to be an intentional selling of the word spell.
Afet


Reply author: Rinonalyrna Fathomlin
Replied on: 10 May 2008 21:53:43
Message:

He does spell it that way on purpose. It's become something of an in-joke here.


Reply author: GS
Replied on: 22 May 2008 23:41:02
Message:

Ricardo, you fiend!

Great book, I enjoyed it 'muchly'. The annoying thing about reading these books is the wait for the next one. I am very curious as to how and where you are taking the characters/plot next. Swordmage is in many ways a "stand alone" book, which is also interesting. Very "whole", even if it does leave much to be explored.

Great Read

- GS


Reply author: Fillow
Replied on: 10 Jun 2008 21:12:53
Message:

Hi Richard,

as a beginning, I'd like to thank you for Swordmage. I wont judge the novel by itself nor "suck up to anyone". I just want to tell you that this novel is the first FR novel I read in English (I'm French !) and I really love it.
Thanks a lot.
I was also afraid of the first post-Spellplague novel but I'm reassured !

But that's not the aim of my post (I'm just hoping you'll read it !)
So :
About the Changelands, I saw (in Swordmage) that it was parts of (returned?) Abeir which came out of the grounds of Toril to join the both "continents"... or something like that...
Did I understand in the good way ?

Thanks for reading Richard.


Reply author: dracon
Replied on: 16 Jul 2008 04:36:05
Message:

Just wanted to say that I picked up Swordmage yesterday, and after few chapters I can't put it down. It's really top notch. I love the characters and the setting. Very recently ran a campaign in Hulburg so I was delighted to see you flesh out the city. I'll certainly be looking forward to the rest of the 'Blades of the Moonsea' series.


Reply author: Trailstalker
Replied on: 19 Jul 2008 18:42:07
Message:

Rich

Just a quick line to let you know that I thought Swordmage was outstanding, and I'm really looking forward to more. It was also nice to see an old friend in the beginning, if only for a moment!

Keep up with the great work!


Reply author: althen artren
Replied on: 08 Aug 2008 17:14:29
Message:

Spells Stilled, Rich:

I am constructing an essay on Myth Drannor. I am making
a list of Powers exuded by the Tree of Souls in 1380DR, and would
an expert guess on the caster level of spell effects given off
by the Tree. I am guessing around 45.

Also, what is the construction material for the Starsoul Shrine?
Simple granite, marble, materials created through the one
High Magic Ritual, pertified wood?

Also, would Telshurr have the aryvandaar ritual that construct the blue crystal in their towers, or was that more of a Level 4-9 spell?


Reply author: Foxhelm
Replied on: 24 Sep 2008 01:27:02
Message:

This question was missed on the Wiz site, so I decided to post it.

Okay in the switch from 3 ed to 4 ed many gods were eliminated. Yet in 2 ed and 3 ed it was possible to resurrect dead gods, is this still possible for 4 ed?
Could I create a super-awesome-cool adventure were I bring back Helm or my favourite Finder (I can see why Finder might have not made it and how you didn't have the final draft when you answer my questions on him, but it stilled hurt to hear he's gone after you said he was an Exarch)?

(And would a donation to the Game Designers Retirement Fund help to make it cannon? Or would just a two story keg of beer be needed to do that?)


Reply author: Razz
Replied on: 22 Jan 2009 16:29:19
Message:

Ok, big question. Are the new elven deities in Dragon Magazine #251 official elven deities in the Realms? I assume their worship was strong during the time the elves ruled Faerun, but have increasingly been forgotten over time. Or is this one of those things (like the Double Diamond novels) that isn't seen as official FR canon?

Thanks.


Reply author: Wooly Rupert
Replied on: 22 Jan 2009 18:16:04
Message:

It may be a good idea to take questions to Rich over to his WotC thread. He's not visited this site in a few months, and it's been even longer since he posted here.


Reply author: The Sage
Replied on: 22 Jan 2009 23:44:52
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

It may be a good idea to take questions to Rich over to his WotC thread. He's not visited this site in a few months, and it's been even longer since he posted here.

Agreed. I actually forgot to state that in my reply to Razz earlier.

'Tis probably best, since Rich has said that he wouldn't be as focused on answering questions here anymore. Instead, preferring to focus just on answering questions about the Realms on the Wizards boards.


Reply author: Penknight
Replied on: 15 Feb 2009 00:24:50
Message:

I have a couple of questions about your short story in Realms of the Elves. The ice spell that Daried's friend casts at the enemy and the spell that allowed Daried to reflect an enemy's spell at another foe... what were they?


Reply author: Sebastrd
Replied on: 01 Mar 2009 19:50:01
Message:

I just have a quick question regarding Lorosfyr.

What do you imagine is the source of madness lurking at the bottom of that terrifying place?

I've been reading a lot of H. P. Lovecraft and Lords of Madness, and I ran across the reference in Underdark while reading up on aberration settlements.


Reply author: Wooly Rupert
Replied on: 11 Mar 2009 22:55:41
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Sebastrd


What do you imagine is the source of madness lurking at the bottom of that terrifying place?


It's a never-ending concert of every boyband and novelty act that's ever existed, with that accursed Titanic tune played every three songs -- as it was when the movie was in theaters.


Reply author: Afetbinttuzani
Replied on: 17 Mar 2009 19:31:05
Message:

Hi, Richard.

I have a question about something mentioned in the 4E FRPG. In the "Deities of Toril" section, under the description of Selūne, it says that her followers:
"Seek out creatures who bear the curse of lycan-thropy, curing those who hope to end their affliction and destroying those who have suc-cumbed to the beast within" (p. 152).

This implies that lycanthropy is a curable affliction, whereas the 4E Monster Manual indicates that it is "hereditary" and cannot be contracted by infection. Do priestesses of Selūne have some extraordinary means of removing lycanthropy?


Reply author: Ashe Ravenheart
Replied on: 17 Mar 2009 19:35:38
Message:

Afetbinttuzani, you might want to post your question here

quote:
Originally posted by The Sage

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

It may be a good idea to take questions to Rich over to his WotC thread. He's not visited this site in a few months, and it's been even longer since he posted here.

Agreed. I actually forgot to state that in my reply to Razz earlier.

'Tis probably best, since Rich has said that he wouldn't be as focused on answering questions here anymore. Instead, preferring to focus just on answering questions about the Realms on the Wizards boards.



Reply author: Afetbinttuzani
Replied on: 17 Mar 2009 19:45:42
Message:

Thanks, Ashe.


Reply author: IngoDjan
Replied on: 19 Mar 2009 21:00:57
Message:

Hello RB.

Well, I would like to thank you for your works. I've just read complete Last Mythal and I enjoy this much. Read this also help me in my game table, creating histories and giving my players more depth in elven character (There is 2 in my table).
This made me thoughtful of buy more novels. I'm planing to buy the books that tells Elminster history at amazon.com. The problem is that with the ship rate and the exchange Dolar/Real it's almost 5 times expenser for us in Brazil.
For last, I“m very sorry for my friends that can“t understand english. Here in Brazil, only Salvatore's Icewind Dale trilogy is translated, but many people like me could read more FR novels in english. And then, when rarely they do, they keep reading all Salvatore's or Greenwood novels, and just after more than 20 books they start reading other authors. For me was different, 'cause I love Avatar Trilogy and read this first.
My point is, I want made others autors of FR books, like you and Elaine, knowed here in Brazil. I want to start a association of FR books fans and I“m was wondering if you could send some message to brazilians, to persuade then to read your book. Maybe, with this, more people will buy your books, the market will grow up and maybe, the editors could translate some others books to the portuguese.

Thank“s a lot!


Reply author: The Sage
Replied on: 19 Mar 2009 23:06:20
Message:

Ingo, in the interests of Rich seeing your post, you might want to consider shifting it over to the Wizards boards. As you can see from my and Ashe's posts above, Mr Baker isn't as active here at Candlekeep as he used to be.


Reply author: IngoDjan
Replied on: 20 Mar 2009 00:09:18
Message:

Oh! Thanks!


Reply author: Fillow
Replied on: 09 Jun 2009 15:10:40
Message:

I just wondered if Rich had a homepage, a blog or a website.


Reply author: The Sage
Replied on: 09 Jun 2009 16:52:51
Message:

Well, he's got a Staff Blog over at WotC.


Reply author: Fillow
Replied on: 09 Jun 2009 17:42:34
Message:

So easy !
Thanks again Sage


Reply author: Purple Dragon Knight
Replied on: 22 Jun 2009 05:03:11
Message:

Is Mr. Baker still involved with the Realms or even at WotC? his last post was May 2008...

PS: which perhaps beg the question that questions should be asked on other author threads or even addressed internally... perhaps it's time for a "Question for the Sage" thread or somethin'...


Reply author: The Sage
Replied on: 22 Jun 2009 05:23:10
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Purple Dragon Knight

Is Mr. Baker still involved with the Realms or even at WotC? his last post was May 2008...
He still posts on the Wizards boards. But he hasn't been back to Candlekeep since August '08. And he made it clear just before that time that he was intent on just focusing on comments/questions made over at WotC. Thus, his current state of silence here at Candlekeep.


Reply author: Purple Dragon Knight
Replied on: 22 Jun 2009 20:02:11
Message:

Hmm... weird.


Reply author: Fillow
Replied on: 22 Jun 2009 21:29:06
Message:

Is there a specific reason for this ?


Reply author: althen artren
Replied on: 22 Jun 2009 21:49:01
Message:

Well, maybe he didn't like all the author bashing that happened here.
Most likely the higher are keeping a close leash on him.
Sometimes the anti-4ed discussion here get a little heated.


Reply author: sfdragon
Replied on: 22 Jun 2009 23:00:25
Message:

they get heated anywhere.




Reply author: The Sage
Replied on: 23 Jun 2009 01:28:29
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Fillow

Is there a specific reason for this ?

Mostly, it had to do with Rich being unable to keep up with questions made both here and at WotC. His work at Wizards was increasing at the time he made the decision to leave these halls, and he, rightly so, thought it best to dedicate himself just to one online venue for questions about the Realms and its development.


Reply author: Fillow
Replied on: 24 Jun 2009 05:13:47
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by The Sage

Mostly, it had to do with Rich being unable to keep up with questions made both here and at WotC. His work at Wizards was increasing at the time he made the decision to leave these halls, and he, rightly so, thought it best to dedicate himself just to one online venue for questions about the Realms and its development.



Allright.
So, we could go on asking him question here in CK and do as THO do about Ed's questions if one scribe of us does the "copy/paste" action from CK to Gleemax threads and reversely...

So, next question for Richard please !... Who has one ?


Reply author: The Sage
Replied on: 24 Jun 2009 05:51:30
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Fillow

quote:
Originally posted by The Sage

Mostly, it had to do with Rich being unable to keep up with questions made both here and at WotC. His work at Wizards was increasing at the time he made the decision to leave these halls, and he, rightly so, thought it best to dedicate himself just to one online venue for questions about the Realms and its development.



Allright.
So, we could go on asking him question here in CK and do as THO do about Ed's questions if one scribe of us does the "copy/paste" action from CK to Gleemax threads and reversely...
I suppose that's possible.

While it would really just be easier for scribes with questions for Rich to post them over at WotC, some members of Candlekeep don't have Wizards accounts. Thus, if they don't have Gleemax accounts, these scribes could post their queries here and ask any other scribes who, like myself, have Wizards accounts to relay their queries for them.


Reply author: ogonczyk
Replied on: 07 Mar 2010 00:28:41
Message:

I have a question to mister Baker. Does Sarya Dladrageth get involved in a sexual intercourse with the demon Malkizid in the Final Gate? thanks for the answer!


Reply author: The Sage
Replied on: 07 Mar 2010 00:40:38
Message:

ogonczyk, please note the following re: Rich Baker's participation here at Candlekeep:-

quote:
Originally posted by The Sage

quote:
Originally posted by Fillow

quote:
Originally posted by The Sage

Mostly, it had to do with Rich being unable to keep up with questions made both here and at WotC. His work at Wizards was increasing at the time he made the decision to leave these halls, and he, rightly so, thought it best to dedicate himself just to one online venue for questions about the Realms and its development.



Allright.
So, we could go on asking him question here in CK and do as THO do about Ed's questions if one scribe of us does the "copy/paste" action from CK to Gleemax threads and reversely...
I suppose that's possible.

While it would really just be easier for scribes with questions for Rich to post them over at WotC, some members of Candlekeep don't have Wizards accounts. Thus, if they don't have Gleemax accounts, these scribes could post their queries here and ask any other scribes who, like myself, have Wizards accounts to relay their queries for them.


Reply author: Dalor Darden
Replied on: 13 Aug 2010 07:01:46
Message:

Hiya!

I have a question concerning the Kur-Tharsu (Ogre Magi) of the lands of Thar.

In your article concerning Thar titled "The Tribes of Thar" you write that Kur-Tharsu means "Overlords of Thar"

Could you break down what the pieces of that mean? For instance, does Kur mean "Overlord" in Giantish, or King...or...?

I would greatly appreciate it!


Reply author: The Sage
Replied on: 13 Aug 2010 08:10:49
Message:

Dalor, please see my and Wooly's quoted post below.

quote:
Originally posted by The Sage

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

It may be a good idea to take questions to Rich over to his WotC thread. He's not visited this site in a few months, and it's been even longer since he posted here.

Agreed. I actually forgot to state that in my reply to Razz earlier.

'Tis probably best, since Rich has said that he wouldn't be as focused on answering questions here any more. Instead, preferring to focus just on answering questions about the Realms on the Wizards boards.


Reply author: Dalor Darden
Replied on: 13 Aug 2010 10:35:43
Message:

A pity that.

I had hoped to get an answer here...I'll email him and post his answer here if he replies.


Reply author: Brimstone
Replied on: 13 Aug 2010 13:30:57
Message:

Rich hasn't answered a question on the Wizard forums in about six months...


Reply author: Rhewtani
Replied on: 21 Jan 2011 17:44:01
Message:

So, someday he might see this ...

Rich:

What decisions, adjustments, and/or retcons did you make to Aesperus to handle your use of him in Swordmage versus his write up in the old Moonsea supplement?


Reply author: Brimstone
Replied on: 22 Jan 2011 00:44:09
Message:

If you have a WotC account you might want to PM him. He will reply to his PM's. At least he has replied to mine.

There is also the WotC Bookclub...


Reply author: The Sage
Replied on: 22 Jan 2011 01:01:16
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Brimstone

If you have a WotC account you might want to PM him. He will reply to his PM's. At least he has replied to mine.

There is also the WotC Bookclub...

Indeed. His account here shows very little activity over the last lot of years. Better luck at Wizards, I think.


Reply author: The Red Walker
Replied on: 16 Feb 2011 01:40:09
Message:

A new Jack Ravenwild novel in the works? It looks like it according to his wotc blog.....
This would sure be a good time for Rich to pop in here and get some love!


Reply author: Aryalómė
Replied on: 18 Feb 2011 03:08:22
Message:

The Last Mythal trilogy is my favorite book series!! For one, it is about te Eladrin/Elves of FR. The other bg reason os that ot also deals wth the Ruar-Tel-Quessir!! My favorite race!!! So, my question fr Richard Baker is hat does he know of any OFFICIAL Star Elf cities i Sildeyuir?


Reply author: The Sage
Replied on: 18 Feb 2011 03:23:15
Message:

Tradwitch, please see my and Wooly's quoted post below:-

quote:
Originally posted by The Sage

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

It may be a good idea to take questions to Rich over to his WotC thread. He's not visited this site in a few months, and it's been even longer since he posted here.

Agreed. I actually forgot to state that in my reply to Razz earlier.

'Tis probably best, since Rich has said that he wouldn't be as focused on answering questions here any more. Instead, preferring to focus just on answering questions about the Realms on the Wizards boards.


Reply author: skychrome
Replied on: 20 Feb 2011 14:10:52
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by The Red Walker

A new Jack Ravenwild novel in the works? It looks like it according to his wotc blog.....
This would sure be a good time for Rich to pop in here and get some love!



Red Walker, do you by chance have the link to that bit of information? I scrolled over his blog but didn't see that part and I am terribly interested in this!


Reply author: Elfinblade
Replied on: 20 Feb 2011 21:53:45
Message:

skychrome, this is taken from the novels section.

quote:
Originally posted by The Red Walker

Very cool, Rich's wotc blog ...check the jan 25th entry:

http://community.wizards.com/wotc_richbaker/blog/


This is very good news......if you put me into a corner, I would have to rank jack a top 5 FR novel character. If it happens......great move by wotc.(man have I wanted to be able to say something like that for a loooonnngnnggg time!)



Januar 25th entry, just a tiny mention of the possibility :)


Reply author: skychrome
Replied on: 20 Feb 2011 23:21:31
Message:

Thanks Elfinblade, found it! Absolutely aweseome, as he already wrote chapter 2, then this is more than a mere posibility!


Reply author: Dalor Darden
Replied on: 24 Feb 2011 02:04:49
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Dalor Darden

Hiya!

I have a question concerning the Kur-Tharsu (Ogre Magi) of the lands of Thar.

In your article concerning Thar titled "The Tribes of Thar" you write that Kur-Tharsu means "Overlords of Thar"

Could you break down what the pieces of that mean? For instance, does Kur mean "Overlord" in Giantish, or King...or...?

I would greatly appreciate it!



To which Rich answered:

quote:
Regrettably we don't have any kind of lexicon of Giantish, so treat this as a very informal answer... I would say "Kur" means lord or master, and "Tharsu" naturally describes "things or people Tharish." Maybe the better translation is "masters of the Thars," meaning the tribes/peoples of Thar, as opposed to "masters of Thar" meaning the land.

For that matter, possibly kur is a plural, and the singular would be kar or kir.

So, all in all: Pick an answer you like, and have fun with it!


So there ya have it!


Reply author: Zireael
Replied on: 05 Mar 2011 13:07:14
Message:

Where should I head if I want to ask Rich a question over at Wizards forums?


Reply author: The Sage
Replied on: 05 Mar 2011 14:12:18
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Zireael

Where should I head if I want to ask Rich a question over at Wizards forums?

Last I heard, Rich's personal thread over on the Wizards boards had been closed -- partly because his work schedule just wasn't allowing him enough time to answer questions with any real degree of frequency.

I suppose you could just post a general question on the board, with a header address to Rich. Maybe that'll get his attention?

To be honest, I really don't know. It's been a long while since I've been regularly active over there, so Rich's answering technique may have changed again.


Reply author: Dalor Darden
Replied on: 05 Mar 2011 21:27:40
Message:

I sent him a personal message and he got back to me in just a couple of days.

That was the only time I'd PMd him there...I used to annoy the hell out of him about Birthright though; so he may just be used to me. LOL


Reply author: Matt James
Replied on: 14 Dec 2011 22:26:20
Message:

Rich was laid off by WotC today. Cheers to his 20+ years and may he have many more.


Reply author: Bakra
Replied on: 14 Dec 2011 22:34:22
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Matt James

Rich was laid off by WotC today. Cheers to his 20+ years and may he have many more.



I really don't like the month of December.


Reply author: Hawkins
Replied on: 14 Dec 2011 22:34:26
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Matt James

Rich was laid off by WotC today. Cheers to his 20+ years and may he have many more.

Sad news!


Reply author: skychrome
Replied on: 15 Dec 2011 00:38:03
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Matt James

Rich was laid off by WotC today. Cheers to his 20+ years and may he have many more.



Whatever may be the reason for that, it is not that we are not already used to such news lately from WotC.
I hope this does not affect his upcoming Prince of Ravens novel!
And man...isn“t this nice one week before Christmas...


Reply author: The Sage
Replied on: 15 Dec 2011 01:13:38
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Matt James

Rich was laid off by WotC today. Cheers to his 20+ years and may he have many more.

Though I may not have always agreed with some of his developmental choices regarding the Realms, I often found myself admiring his designer-traits and his ability to carry forth with new and alternate setting ideas.

He will be missed.


Reply author: Ashe Ravenheart
Replied on: 15 Dec 2011 04:32:08
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by The Sage

quote:
Originally posted by Matt James

Rich was laid off by WotC today. Cheers to his 20+ years and may he have many more.

Though I may not have always agreed with some of his developmental choices regarding the Realms, I often found myself admiring his designer-traits and his ability to carry forth with new and alternate setting ideas.

He will be missed.


Agreed, Sage. Even if things developed differently than I wanted, he is still a great designer and writer. Best of luck!


Reply author: Zireael
Replied on: 15 Dec 2011 12:27:33
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by skychrome

quote:
Originally posted by Matt James

Rich was laid off by WotC today. Cheers to his 20+ years and may he have many more.



Whatever may be the reason for that, it is not that we are not already used to such news lately from WotC.
I hope this does not affect his upcoming Prince of Ravens novel!
And man...isn“t this nice one week before Christmas...



Rich's farewell message quoted on EN World says he'll continue working on Prince of Ravens....

A sad day, indeed.


Reply author: Ayrik
Replied on: 15 Dec 2011 14:46:49
Message:

Rich was instrumental in bringing us a ton of stuff. Some of my faves:
(2E) Planescape Monstrous Compendium, The Will and the Way
(3E) Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting, Magic of Faerūn, Unapproachable East, Lords of Darkness
(3.5E) Lost Empires of Faerūn, Tome of Battle, Underdark*

* Well, okay, I confess I didn't really like this last one, not at all in fact, but popularity demands inclusion. 8/9 is still an excellent grade.

You are always welcome to visit Candlekeep, Sir Baker, as often as you like. Your contributions have vastly exceeded the usual entrance fees, though I hope you don't mind if we reassign your nice vacant apartment to some other worthy (and opportunistic) scribe.

Perhaps you'll join the Paizo team, win-win I say. Regardless, best luck in whatever ye choose to do.


Reply author: Dennis
Replied on: 15 Dec 2011 15:02:30
Message:


But he still gets to write more FR novels after Prince of Ravens, right? At the very least, I hope he could pen a trilogy detailing the new adventures of Aeron Morieth.


Reply author: Wooly Rupert
Replied on: 15 Dec 2011 19:16:21
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Dennis


But he still gets to write more FR novels after Prince of Ravens, right? At the very least, I hope he could pen a trilogy detailing the new adventures of Aeron Morieth.



Being an employee for WotC/TSR has never been a requirement for novel writers. I don't think it likely that we'll see more of Aeron Morieth, though. He's not been one of the more popular characters, and absent some method of surviving the Sellplague and the timejump, he'll not be around in the 4E Realms. With FR, there has been a notable reluctance to have novels set in anything other than the here-and-now.


Reply author: althen artren
Replied on: 05 Jan 2012 19:17:15
Message:

So would Rich be willing to once again answer lore questions
from us as he no longer a employee of the MAN?


Reply author: Markustay
Replied on: 05 Jan 2012 23:13:58
Message:

Being an employee of TSR/WotC/Hasbro has never been a reason why someone would not participate here.

That was an odd thought.

On the other hand, it may have been suggested that 'in-house' guys don't hang around here, for legal reasons. For instance, if they came up with an idea that was very similar to one that was discussed here earlier, they could be accused of stealing the idea (although ideas can't be copyrighted - only actual written material, and it would only be a problem if 'lifted' verbatim).

For much the same reason that professional musicians can't really listen to, and offer opinions on, the un-published music of others.

But I think he just got tired of the Grognardize - it got pretty bad during the "Rich Baker must be stopped!" campaign. That was like blaming Einstein for the Atom Bomb.


Reply author: althen artren
Replied on: 05 Jan 2012 23:52:33
Message:

Yeah, I was under the impression that current employees
were encouraged not to be here. Just an impression I got.


Reply author: The Sage
Replied on: 06 Jan 2012 00:04:12
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by althen artren

Yeah, I was under the impression that current employees
were encouraged not to be here. Just an impression I got.

I'm curious as to how you came by that impression?


Reply author: Wooly Rupert
Replied on: 06 Jan 2012 04:21:44
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Markustay

Being an employee of TSR/WotC/Hasbro has never been a reason why someone would not participate here.

That was an odd thought.

On the other hand, it may have been suggested that 'in-house' guys don't hang around here, for legal reasons. For instance, if they came up with an idea that was very similar to one that was discussed here earlier, they could be accused of stealing the idea (although ideas can't be copyrighted - only actual written material, and it would only be a problem if 'lifted' verbatim).

For much the same reason that professional musicians can't really listen to, and offer opinions on, the un-published music of others.

But I think he just got tired of the Grognardize - it got pretty bad during the "Rich Baker must be stopped!" campaign. That was like blaming Einstein for the Atom Bomb.



Actually, I think it was mostly an issue of time -- he was doing the same thing on the WotC forums, as I understand it, and that was on top of his normal duties.

Somewhere on the WotC site, I once saw either a picture or a video interview of some WotC staffer who had a "Rich Baker must be stopped!" sign at his desk. I think if his co-workers were joking about it, it must not have been that big a deal to him.


Reply author: The Sage
Replied on: 06 Jan 2012 05:24:53
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

Actually, I think it was mostly an issue of time -- he was doing the same thing on the WotC forums, as I understand it, and that was on top of his normal duties.
Rich Baker confirmed, around the time that he stopped posting here, that his increased workload with Wizards was eating away at the free time he would usually spend either here or on other non-Wizards' sites. That, and the fact that it was making it harder for him to keep track of discussions he could reply to in-between lengthy bouts of absenteeism.

So to simplify things, he opted just to concentrate on what was asked on the Wizards' boards. And encouraged his fans here to post over there -- when relevant -- and freely return here with his replies to queries passed over by scribes of both sites.


Reply author: Brimstone
Replied on: 06 Jan 2012 05:55:04
Message:

Here is his new blog


Reply author: althen artren
Replied on: 06 Jan 2012 21:41:58
Message:

well, it seemed that he even stopped answering questions
at the WoTC forums as well. A shame, there were still
things in his brain I wanted to pick over.


Reply author: Brian R. James
Replied on: 10 May 2012 02:59:53
Message:

Fans of Rich Baker may be interested to know that he was signed on to write for the Pathfinder Online project - http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1675907842/pathfinder-online-technology-demo


Reply author: Dalor Darden
Replied on: 10 May 2012 03:25:23
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Brian R. James

Fans of Rich Baker may be interested to know that he was signed on to write for the Pathfinder Online project - http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1675907842/pathfinder-online-technology-demo



I'm happy...I am glad to see he landed in a good spot!


Reply author: Matt James
Replied on: 06 Sep 2012 21:49:32
Message:

I'm going to ask Rich if he will come back to CK now that he has long been removed from WotC. If he does, I ask that no one dog-pile him! :)


Reply author: The Sage
Replied on: 07 Sep 2012 01:10:07
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Matt James

I'm going to ask Rich if he will come back to CK now that he has long been removed from WotC. If he does, I ask that no one dog-pile him! :)

I sent word to Rich a few months back, though I've yet to receive a response.

Maybe you'll have better luck?


Reply author: Markustay
Replied on: 07 Sep 2012 02:31:36
Message:

I'd love to see Rich Baker post here again. His decorum during the worst of the anti-4e backlash was commendable. It made me ashamed of the way some of us (at the WotC forums) were behaving. I count him a gentleman and a scholar.

He supported a back-and-forth open dialogue with the fans long before it became fashionable.

quote:
Originally posted by Matt James

I'm going to ask Rich if he will come back to CK now that he has long been removed from WotC. If he does, I ask that no one dog-pile him! :)
He's not my type.

But I'm open-minded, so whatever floats your boat.


Reply author: Dark Wizard
Replied on: 07 Sep 2012 03:32:41
Message:

He has a (relatively) new Realms book out. That's something to talk about.


Reply author: CorellonsDevout
Replied on: 07 Sep 2012 04:33:39
Message:

What is it? I believe the last thing I read of his was Blades of the Moonsea trilogy. I loved the Last Mythal books, and BotM.


Reply author: Brimstone
Replied on: 07 Sep 2012 06:31:15
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by CorellonsDevout

What is it? I believe the last thing I read of his was Blades of the Moonsea trilogy. I loved the Last Mythal books, and BotM.


Prince of Ravens

It's an ebook.


Reply author: CorellonsDevout
Replied on: 07 Sep 2012 06:34:42
Message:

Oh, wow, haha, my bad. I read that one, but I totally spaced that it was by him ^^; the writing style seemed different too, but not in a bad way.


Reply author: Eli the Tanner
Replied on: 02 Jun 2013 17:54:07
Message:

Any word on Rich's return to Candlekeep yet? I know a few of you sent him messages.


Reply author: The Sage
Replied on: 03 Jun 2013 02:41:00
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Eli the Tanner

Any word on Rich's return to Candlekeep yet? I know a few of you sent him messages.

Nothing as of yet.


Reply author: Naeryndam
Replied on: 26 Aug 2014 23:05:35
Message:

I just received this response from Mr. Baker on his personal website, so I figured I'd share it with you all:

Hi Mr. Baker!

Is there any chance we'll get to see more of Araevin or Geran Hulmaster? They are probably my two favorite Forgotten Realms characters and I'd love to read more about them!


Reply
Richard Baker- August 25, 2014 at 5:30 PM

I have half an idea for a potential follow-up to Blades of the Moonsea. Geran ends the series in an interesting place, and I'd like to revisit the character sometime. But I have no immediate plans to knock out another Geran book (or Araevin book, for that matter) -- it's up to Wizards whether more books fit into their Realms plans. But thank you for the compliment! I'm pretty proud of both series.


Reply author: Cards77
Replied on: 31 Oct 2014 01:03:57
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by RichardBaker

It's spelled cwm or cwmb, and pronounced KOOM. It's a high, relatively level area. You might also think of it as a pass, vale, or cirque. I've hiked around Mount Rainier a fair amount since moving out to Washington a few years back, so I was thinking of places like Spray Park or Seattle Park or Burroughs Mountain when I was envisioning the battle at Evereska's western gate.




Is this serious? These areas were already defined in "Return of the Archwizards" and the events in Evereska were they not?

I mean you're one of my favorite authors, hands down, and I thought the book was excellent, but this has to be one of the worst word choices ever. I'm not sure why you would choose a word that essentially know one knows what it means, and assumes it's a horrible typo error.

It really breaks up the book, it's distracting and takes away from the great writing. It was sad to see.


Reply author: Jeremy Grenemyer
Replied on: 31 Oct 2014 02:11:20
Message:

I pointed this out on the Realms-L mailing list some years back. I was embarassed to learn it was a word and not a typo. I do not fault Rich for using it, but myself for not doing my homework before airing a complaint.


Reply author: Wooly Rupert
Replied on: 31 Oct 2014 03:29:56
Message:

I had to look that word up, too, when I first saw it in the book.

It's not the first time I've disagreed with a particular word choice, in a Realms novel... It's obviously a valid word, but it's not one I'd ever seen, anywhere else, before or after. It is my opinion that a less obscure word should have been used.


Reply author: Dalor Darden
Replied on: 31 Oct 2014 05:30:43
Message:

Having as many Welsh ancestors (Edwards and Price mostly) as Irish, the word was known to me. I don't think another word should have been used at all...expanding the knowledge of people is what authors are all about if you ask me.

Should we refer to tacos by a better word? How about we call them folded flatbread and meat?

English by its very nature and origins sprang from a multitude of languages...and Welsh was one of the very first to contribute to many "English" words. I think its fair to say that using the word Cwm was a good idea...anyone that looked it up is unlikely to forget what it means now eh?


Reply author: xaeyruudh
Replied on: 31 Oct 2014 05:38:10
Message:

I kinda wish Realms novels used more obscure words, and more sophisticated characters/plots. It was too easy to stop reading Realms novels entirely for a while when one took a direction I didn't like, for the simple reason that they felt dumbed down. (That's not a criticism of anyone in particular, particularly not anyone who's currently writing for Wizards.) It's not necessary or desirable for every book to read like Shakespeare, but I learned a lot of new words and ideas back in the day from reading Gary's rulebooks and adventures. I like books that encourage us to learn something new. It's not a terrible thing to need a dictionary occasionally when reading, or for kids (and adults) to acquire new vocabulary from reading a fantasy novel.


Reply author: Dalor Darden
Replied on: 31 Oct 2014 05:44:15
Message:

Here are a few other Welsh words that are used by English:

Dad (yep...if you wondered where that came from).

Coracle (nice little water rigs!)

Flannel (I wear it all the time!)

Penguin (means white head...one of the things toe heads are called where I'm from: "You little Penguin!" although I didn't understand until I was older and learned that the welsh is pen gwyn)

Dolmen (seen any nice stone tables lately?)

Paw (yes, every time you look at your kitty or puppy...thank the Welsh)

Bow (welsh I think is bwa)

Iron (many similar Gaelic words...Welsh being the closest and being "hearn" so I'm giving the Irish this one with "iarun")

That's all I can remember right now...


Reply author: Wooly Rupert
Replied on: 31 Oct 2014 11:53:50
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by xaeyruudh

I kinda wish Realms novels used more obscure words, and more sophisticated characters/plots. It was too easy to stop reading Realms novels entirely for a while when one took a direction I didn't like, for the simple reason that they felt dumbed down. (That's not a criticism of anyone in particular, particularly not anyone who's currently writing for Wizards.) It's not necessary or desirable for every book to read like Shakespeare, but I learned a lot of new words and ideas back in the day from reading Gary's rulebooks and adventures. I like books that encourage us to learn something new. It's not a terrible thing to need a dictionary occasionally when reading, or for kids (and adults) to acquire new vocabulary from reading a fantasy novel.



It's not that I have problems learning words from books; indeed, I think my vocabulary is much stronger for my reading.

But I would debate whether or not learning "cwm" has done anything for my vocabulary. As I said, I had never seen that word before reading those books, and this is the first time I've seen it since. It's not a word that lends itself to conversation; I can't picture using it unless I'm discussing terrain features with a geologist or person of Welsh descent.

To me, it come across like a word that was used just for the sake of using it. I'm not saying that's what the author did, but I'm sure we've all known people that deliberately use words unfamiliar to others, to showcase their intelligence. That's what it felt like, to me.

Plus, for most of us, the word looks like a typo. One of the basic rules of the English language is that words have vowels -- and cwm does not. Seeing an unknown word and apparent typo pulls a reader out of the story -- it makes someone put down their book and reach for a dictionary.

And that's why I object to the use of the word -- it stands out so prominently that it breaks the flow of the story, and takes me out of what I am reading. In my opinion, words should keep a reader immersed in the story -- using words that kick them out should be avoided.

I had a similar objection to Richard Lee Byers's use of the word "translate" in the Rogue Dragon books. Yes, it does mean "teleport" and was thus used correctly. And I was already familiar with that usage of it... But for years, in just about everything I've read (Harry Potter being the only real exception), translocation was described as teleportation. So seeing another word used -- even though it was correct -- threw me off, especially when that word has another, more common meaning that is entirely different. The word, again, drew attention to itself and thus broke the flow of the story.

So that's my thing: use whatever words are appropriate, but don't use words that draw the reader's attention away from the story. Keep the narrative flowing.


Reply author: Markustay
Replied on: 31 Oct 2014 13:26:01
Message:

This is funny, because I read something just yesterday by a designer I truly respect and admire, and was stymied that he used an odd word choice, when I could think of at least three simpler words that conveyed the same thing. What I think this may be is a case of 'over-writing' - not sure if I coined that just now, or if it is a known phenomena. I'm probably (very) guilty of it myself.

I almost think its something a writer does to show how clever he/she is - I have to wonder if they compare notes on how many words they make their readers look-up (and damn you, L. Ron Hubbard! Damn you to hell! )

quote:
Originally posted by Naeryndam

I just received this response from Mr. Baker on his personal website, so I figured I'd share it with you all:

Hi Mr. Baker!

Is there any chance we'll get to see more of Araevin or Geran Hulmaster? They are probably my two favorite Forgotten Realms characters and I'd love to read more about them!


Reply
Richard Baker- August 25, 2014 at 5:30 PM

I have half an idea for a potential follow-up to Blades of the Moonsea. Geran ends the series in an interesting place, and I'd like to revisit the character sometime. But I have no immediate plans to knock out another Geran book (or Araevin book, for that matter) -- it's up to Wizards whether more books fit into their Realms plans. But thank you for the compliment! I'm pretty proud of both series.

All I have to say about this is this: Rich Baker is the ONLY FR author to have written a 4th edition novel series that felt like it belong in The Realms... or, at least, MY (our?) Realms. You could take the Bladess of the Moonsea series and plunk it down in the 1e/2e/3e eras with almost no problems - the 4e changes were barely addressed and treated as an afterthought. Kudos for that.

The other authors - several I adore as FR designers - I think became too restricted by the changes. In some cases it was because the series itself had to address those changes (Ed's books), but in others, I almost felt like they were trying too hard... like we were having our noses rubbed in Spellplague (even when there was no reason to bring it up). Sadly, I feel the Sundering novels also went that way... "Hey, this is a great manuscript you handed me a few years back - can you put the word 'Sundering' in it somewhere, in at least three places, and we can pretend its about something else? Because then we're good to go!" Yup - that is EXACTLY how I picture those conversations going.

So, anyway, my point is that Rich wrote the only 4e novels I actually enjoyed. I didn't read them all, but mostly because I didn't want to, and that was because they tried too hard to be about a world I was not a fan of. I don't agree with a lot of his design decisions, but I think he is a terrific author, because he made me enjoy his stories, DESPITE when they were set.


Reply author: Cards77
Replied on: 14 Nov 2014 02:39:52
Message:

Like I said Rich is one of THE BEST authors hands down. I can't think of another author who portrays elves as well as he does. His books just ooze great elfi-ness and really make me FEEL how elves are different, and special. I think that's a major achievement, as 'properly" portraying elves is to me at least, a task of great difficulty.

As for the "cwm", I'm fairly stymied myself that an editor worth her/his salt let that one go.

I would like to mention however that in my most recent issue of National Geographic, I was surprised to see that "the Western Cwm" is apparently a real place on Everest. I wonder if the author may have "borrowed" some of the features of Everest for the novel.

Of course I still think the word is quite a silly and confounding choice which serves to kill my immersion, and continues to do so into the 2nd book.

Otherwise fantastic trilogy.


Reply author: xaeyruudh
Replied on: 14 Nov 2014 19:50:19
Message:

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

To me, it come across like a word that was used just for the sake of using it. I'm not saying that's what the author did, but I'm sure we've all known people that deliberately use words unfamiliar to others, to showcase their intelligence. That's what it felt like, to me.


Sorry, I didn't see this until now. Good points all, and I completely agree. Realms authors should (be allowed to) step up their game, but not in the cherrypicking words to make banal sound fresh way.

I think it would be fascinating and frustrating to see exactly how much freedom authors are given in writing novels for WotC, and what points they're restricted on. I have a feeling it would be depressing for aspiring authors. They probably need a pretty thick skin before even going into the process.


Reply author: Artemas Entreri
Replied on: 02 Apr 2015 03:25:20
Message:

So I just finished Avenger and am dying to know if there will be a follow up novel in the near future detailing Vaasa's plans 10 years down the road from where this book ends.


Reply author: Duneth Despana
Replied on: 24 Jul 2015 12:16:57
Message:

do the simple diamond-shaped brooches of those who stood guard over Nar Kerymhoarth, the Nameless Dungeon, have any magical properties? Thanks in advance.


Reply author: Cards77
Replied on: 14 Sep 2016 17:54:04
Message:

Who exactly is or what is The Pale Sybil? Will anything else ever be written about her? She seems like an incredibly interesting character that likely has a long and equally interesting history. Can you tell us anything more about her? Has anyone ever statted her out for 3/3.5? Thanks.


Reply author: Deepening Moon
Replied on: 18 Jun 2017 12:04:20
Message:

Hello Mr. Baker,
first I want to thank you for writing the Last Mythal Trilogy. One of the best Forgotten Realms Book / Trilogy that I’ve read... The story of the Trilogy inspired me to design an adventure for my group. So I would like to know more about the weapons and armor of the Fey’ri.
In your books you state, that the arms and armors are of fine quality and elven workmanship, and from the Vyshaan armories in the Nameless Dungeon. Also the daemonfey are described as “dressed in armor of scarlet and gold”. Can you tell me more about these types of ancient armor? Are there mostly chainshirts, chainmails, plate mails or some other kind similar maybe to the hoplite armor (the armor of the classic Greek warrior described in the 2nd Edition Book Combat & Tactics)? What do you think?
What Materials were used by the Vyshaan armorers: mithral, elven steel, bronze? In his book “The Summoning” Troy Denning gives the following description of an Aryvandaaran tomb: "Their bejeweled weapons and gold-trimmed armor were lying untouched beneath a thick layer of dust. By their amber skin and ornate bronze armor, Galaeron knew these to be Aryvandaaran nobles, high lords of the aggressive Vyshaan clan." Are the armors from the Nameless Dungeon quite the same material?
Do some of the armors have the qualities of Elven Chain? Or what other magical qualities do they have? Is there maybe a family crest on some of the armors or weapons and how does it look?
I would like to know more about this!
Thank you very much!


Reply author: Cards77
Replied on: 01 Nov 2018 20:18:13
Message:

Hi Rich, can you tell us what exactly was the fate of the Company of the Riven Orb?

We have been enjoying Prison of the Firebringer immensely!

Thank you so much for all your hard work. It's been a joy sharing your different works with my family both in and out of game.


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