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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
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Posted - 26 Nov 2010 :  05:35:31  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by dennis

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by dennis

quote:
Originally posted by sleyvas

However, transmuters, enchanters, illusionists, diviners, and abjurers would probably find this a great way to expand the influence of their school against the other more combat oriented Zulkirs of necromancy, conjuration, and evocation.



Possibly. But then again, why need some silly Wal-Marts when they could attain their goals by using spies or magically hidden agents, which would make more sense as such rather speaks of their 'character.'



That leaves you more energy for your nefarious plots -- which, if discovered, can be more readily covered up/explained if your presence is open and welcomed. Being openly admitted to a city gives you certain advantages you wouldn't have as a hidden interloper, as well -- like the ability to act more openly.



But once discovered, you wouldn't be welcomed at all. Truly a waste of time and resources.



That depends on the nature of the discovery. If the Thayans were well-established, they'd have a variety of ways of dealing with this discovery -- not the least of which would be using local authorities to deal with and/or discredit those who made the discovery.

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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
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Posted - 26 Nov 2010 :  05:46:59  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Arik

Your logic is true, Wooly. It just doesn't seem to agree with the earlier-established Red qualities of respecting nothing more than magical potency. The slithering serpent or trojan horse approach is undeniably effective, and adds that much more villainous twist to your dagger when you do finally act upon your treacherous plans ... it just doesn't seem as easily "in character" as Reds simply blasting down the gates with fire and sending legions of undead/demon weapons platforms into your cities instead. The strong take what the weak cannot defend, magical mastery is the ultimate measure of strength.

Why the sudden change in tactics? Was Thay feeling a little lonely? Did the game designers feel that Thay needed to be drawn out a little more? How would you encourage all of your divisive scheming Red factions into cooperating in such a grandoise plot?



Well, as I understand it, the Red Wal-Marts weren't universally supported by the Zulkirs. All it would take is a couple of them to say "hey, this openly conquering other nations routine hasn't worked out so well, has it? Maybe we could try something with a chance of success?"

It would only take a handful of the Zulkirs to set this up. And honestly, I'd be surprised if all of those Zulkirs even thought it was a good idea. Some may have, some may have gone along on the off-chance that it worked, some may have joined in just to have something else going they could use against enemies, some may have joined to get potential rivals out of their hair....

Thay has not been a monolithic entity, acting in unison. Thay is your typical hotbed of Machiavellan politics, with everyone jockeying for position against everyone else. All it takes is one person to have a not unreasonable idea, and they'll have a lot of support, for a lot of reasons.

And we have seen Thay trying tactics other than outright conquest, as well. Off the top of my head, I'm recalling how they gained power in Mulmaster, and I'm recalling a female Red Wizard trying to take advantage of Azoun IV's wandering eyes. So it's not unprecedented or out of character for them to try yet another means of gathering power.

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Edited by - Wooly Rupert on 26 Nov 2010 05:48:33
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Dennis
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Posted - 26 Nov 2010 :  05:57:01  Show Profile Send Dennis a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by The Sage

quote:
Originally posted by dennis

But once discovered, you wouldn't be welcomed at all. Truly a waste of time and resources.

You're running that risk either way -- whether you're nefariously hiding your secrets behind master spies and illusionists, or acting openly and attempting to lull gullible markets into a false sense of economic support. Discovery in either case results in problems for the foreign ambitions of these Red Wizards.




Exactly. That's partly the reason I said why need the silly shops when the spies would suffice and when the discovery for either means is equally possible.

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Dennis
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Posted - 26 Nov 2010 :  06:02:33  Show Profile Send Dennis a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by dennis

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by dennis

quote:
Originally posted by sleyvas

However, transmuters, enchanters, illusionists, diviners, and abjurers would probably find this a great way to expand the influence of their school against the other more combat oriented Zulkirs of necromancy, conjuration, and evocation.



Possibly. But then again, why need some silly Wal-Marts when they could attain their goals by using spies or magically hidden agents, which would make more sense as such rather speaks of their 'character.'



That leaves you more energy for your nefarious plots -- which, if discovered, can be more readily covered up/explained if your presence is open and welcomed. Being openly admitted to a city gives you certain advantages you wouldn't have as a hidden interloper, as well -- like the ability to act more openly.



But once discovered, you wouldn't be welcomed at all. Truly a waste of time and resources.



That depends on the nature of the discovery. If the Thayans were well-established, they'd have a variety of ways of dealing with this discovery -- not the least of which would be using local authorities to deal with and/or discredit those who made the discovery.



The spies and/or hidden agents (say, the trusted advisers of certain politicians or the politicians themselves) not yet discovered would be able to discredit any discovery. Hence the uselessness of the 'shops.'

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Ayrik
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Canada
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Posted - 26 Nov 2010 :  06:06:07  Show Profile Send Ayrik a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Wooly Rupert
All it takes is one person to have a not unreasonable [but successful] idea, and they'll have a lot of support, for a lot of reasons [inspired by greed and power].
I do agree.

Hmmm, I totally forgot about Mulmaster (or was it Hillsfar? doesn't matter). Devious Red bastards.

Red-Marts being conceived by a single faction, then emerging as a "winning" strategy seems plausible enough. Why keep doing things the hard way when you can get more for less with the new approach?

I just personally don't like it, lol, not in my Realms, at least not on such a global scope.

[/Ayrik]
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The Sage
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Posted - 26 Nov 2010 :  06:18:14  Show Profile  Send The Sage an AOL message  Click to see The Sage's MSN Messenger address  Send The Sage a Yahoo! Message Send The Sage a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

Well, as I understand it, the Red Wal-Marts weren't universally supported by the Zulkirs. All it would take is a couple of them to say "hey, this openly conquering other nations routine hasn't worked out so well, has it? Maybe we could try something with a chance of success?"

It would only take a handful of the Zulkirs to set this up. And honestly, I'd be surprised if all of those Zulkirs even thought it was a good idea. Some may have, some may have gone along on the off-chance that it worked, some may have joined in just to have something else going they could use against enemies, some may have joined to get potential rivals out of their hair....
I'm not so sure that's completely the case. Unclean makes it pretty clear that there are definitive divisions between the various "factions" among the Zulkirs. The Tam versus Thrul feud, for example, and the other Zulkirs either allying with one or the other simply because they fear Tam or don't want to antagonise Aznar. The politics of the Red-Marts then seemed to become a somewhat lesser concern, especially after the death of Rhym. The Zulkirate was quickly becoming a battlefield of personalities, rather than competing ideologies.

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Ayrik
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Posted - 26 Nov 2010 :  06:30:03  Show Profile Send Ayrik a Private Message  Reply with Quote
How much control do the Zulkirs really have over their Reds? Especially outside of Thay?

[/Ayrik]
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
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Posted - 26 Nov 2010 :  14:51:31  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by dennis

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by dennis

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by dennis

quote:
Originally posted by sleyvas

However, transmuters, enchanters, illusionists, diviners, and abjurers would probably find this a great way to expand the influence of their school against the other more combat oriented Zulkirs of necromancy, conjuration, and evocation.



Possibly. But then again, why need some silly Wal-Marts when they could attain their goals by using spies or magically hidden agents, which would make more sense as such rather speaks of their 'character.'



That leaves you more energy for your nefarious plots -- which, if discovered, can be more readily covered up/explained if your presence is open and welcomed. Being openly admitted to a city gives you certain advantages you wouldn't have as a hidden interloper, as well -- like the ability to act more openly.



But once discovered, you wouldn't be welcomed at all. Truly a waste of time and resources.



That depends on the nature of the discovery. If the Thayans were well-established, they'd have a variety of ways of dealing with this discovery -- not the least of which would be using local authorities to deal with and/or discredit those who made the discovery.



The spies and/or hidden agents (say, the trusted advisers of certain politicians or the politicians themselves) not yet discovered would be able to discredit any discovery. Hence the uselessness of the 'shops.'



So the secondary goals of gaining money, keeping rivals/apprentices busy or out of your hair, building good will, distributing items that may further help you or hinder foes, all of those things are utterly useless?

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sleyvas
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Posted - 26 Nov 2010 :  14:57:50  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Arik

Your examples are valid, sleyvas, though I'm hesitant to draw comparisons between Thay (and her neighbours) and the complex sociopolitical considerations of certain RL nations, at least while I'm online.
Slightly OT -
Playing under 2E-ish rules, my Reds have access to "minor" schools of magic (Divination like everybody else; plus Illusion, Invocation, Necromancy, and Elemental Fire), basically allowing them to cast many spells (up to 3rd level) that their specializations would otherwise prohibit. I haven't quite figured out how to translate this into 3E or later class mechanics. Any suggestions?



Understood on the comparing, and I'll just say one other thing on that subject just to show where my mind was. I see the two cultures as very similiar at their base... how to say it... drives??? (i.e. revolutionary, allowing for personal freedom for those with stake in the country <for some, i.e. Mulans in Thay, landowning males in early America>, and a willingness to band together in a coalition if needed for shared defense. However, they're vastly different in how they would employ their "engines", which to me is just really interesting. Its kind of like someone I recently heard comparing the mechanics behind the nazi movement and communism (two highly government oriented means of running a country, but a lot different in their methodology <neither of which do I like, but just to get my thoughts out there>).

On your off topic thing - 3E red wizards can learn spells from schools that they have as prohibited schools, up until such time as they become red wizards. Even after being red wizards, they can still cast these spells, even though they are a prohibited spell, because they learned them before becoming so intensely specialized. There's also some feats (very hard to get mind you) in some of the books that allow a wizard to open access to some schools of magic that are currrently prohibited to them (I did a build on an ex-red wizard in Damara from the twilight riders, he was a paladin / former red wizard according to lore from bloodstone lands, and in building him out I had him use such feats in order to be able to cast simulacrum so that he could create apprentices to work in his circle). Yes, I do know that technically the paladin / ex-red wizard should have lost his red wizard class abilities because he was no longer evil, but I felt it made him an interesting NPC without overpowering him (and there's much easier ways to get the ability to have circle casting than becoming a red wizard for a good character... i.e. Hathrans and the Halruaan class).

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas
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sleyvas
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USA
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Posted - 26 Nov 2010 :  15:09:51  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Arik

Your logic is true, Wooly. It just doesn't seem to agree with the earlier-established Red qualities of respecting nothing more than magical potency. The slithering serpent or trojan horse approach is undeniably effective, and adds that much more villainous twist to your dagger when you do finally act upon your treacherous plans ... it just doesn't seem as easily "in character" as Reds simply blasting down the gates with fire and sending legions of undead/demon weapons platforms into your cities instead. The strong take what the weak cannot defend, magical mastery is the ultimate measure of strength.

Why the sudden change in tactics? Was Thay feeling a little lonely? Did the game designers feel that Thay needed to be drawn out a little more? How would you encourage all of your divisive scheming Red factions into cooperating in such a grandoise plot?



I would say basically this... the blast their way in method would be common for the schools of evocation, conjuration, and necromancy... all of which were the more influential and powerful schools being mentioned in the 1st edition version of Thay. However, those same schools caused what? The Salamander War, which caused a lot of strife within Thay. After this debacle, the other Zulkirs saw some ground for movement and expansion of their school's power (and probably an upsurge of support from commoners), plus a means to refill their coffers so that they could rebuild a lot of what burned. Given that wood is not common in Thay and the salamanders probably burned a lot of houses, at least for a short term getting wood imports cheaply was probably a highly sought after thing. Thus, the enclaves come to power, probably initially for trade in simple goods like food, manpower for jobs that locals would not enjoy (via slaves), security against aggressors, and finally through minor magic items sales.

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas
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The Sage
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Posted - 26 Nov 2010 :  15:27:42  Show Profile  Send The Sage an AOL message  Click to see The Sage's MSN Messenger address  Send The Sage a Yahoo! Message Send The Sage a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Arik

How much control do the Zulkirs really have over their Reds? Especially outside of Thay?

Outside of Thay? I think it would really depend on just how much a vested interest a particular Zulkir has in any regions beyond their country's borders.

Alternatively, if a rival Zulkir looked to be devoting him/herself to some kind of agenda in, say, Sembia or Cormyr, for example... I'd assume the opposing Zulkir would either try to sabotage his/her rival's efforts, or extend his/her power at home and attempt to exploit his/her rival Zulkir's apparent inattentiveness to matters within Thay.

In any case, the resulting Zulkirate authority over the Red Wizards would probably wax and wane accordingly.

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Dennis
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Posted - 26 Nov 2010 :  16:31:14  Show Profile Send Dennis a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by dennis

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by dennis

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by dennis

quote:
Originally posted by sleyvas

However, transmuters, enchanters, illusionists, diviners, and abjurers would probably find this a great way to expand the influence of their school against the other more combat oriented Zulkirs of necromancy, conjuration, and evocation.



Possibly. But then again, why need some silly Wal-Marts when they could attain their goals by using spies or magically hidden agents, which would make more sense as such rather speaks of their 'character.'



That leaves you more energy for your nefarious plots -- which, if discovered, can be more readily covered up/explained if your presence is open and welcomed. Being openly admitted to a city gives you certain advantages you wouldn't have as a hidden interloper, as well -- like the ability to act more openly.



But once discovered, you wouldn't be welcomed at all. Truly a waste of time and resources.



That depends on the nature of the discovery. If the Thayans were well-established, they'd have a variety of ways of dealing with this discovery -- not the least of which would be using local authorities to deal with and/or discredit those who made the discovery.



The spies and/or hidden agents (say, the trusted advisers of certain politicians or the politicians themselves) not yet discovered would be able to discredit any discovery. Hence the uselessness of the 'shops.'



So the secondary goals of gaining money, keeping rivals/apprentices busy or out of your hair, building good will, distributing items that may further help you or hinder foes, all of those things are utterly useless?



YES. With an emphasis on utterly. Gaining money through the shops? No. They have mines, have thieves who are at the same time practitioners of the Art, engage in black markets, sell slaves...the list goes on... Keeping rivals busy through the shops? No. The Reds are pretty smart to devise several other ways to keep their rivals occupied. If you read the HL trilogy, you should know what I mean. Building good will through the shops? Now that's funny. Good and Thay can never be used in one phrase. If deception is all they want, as I mentioned, they can utilize their spies. Distributing items that may further help them or hinder their foes through the shops? What for? The spies and mind-reading-immune agents are more than enough.

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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
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Posted - 26 Nov 2010 :  17:02:52  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by dennis

The spies and mind-reading-immune agents are more than enough.



Obviously not, because the shops that you so despise are canon. As is Thay trying other methods of gaining power outside of Thay.

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Edited by - Wooly Rupert on 26 Nov 2010 17:04:14
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The Sage
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Posted - 26 Nov 2010 :  17:14:39  Show Profile  Send The Sage an AOL message  Click to see The Sage's MSN Messenger address  Send The Sage a Yahoo! Message Send The Sage a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by dennis

The spies and mind-reading-immune agents are more than enough.



Obviously not, because the shops that you so despise are canon. As is Thay trying other methods of gaining power outside of Thay.

And, again, 'thas further grounding in Unclean -- as Tam starts positioning his players for his "mad-power-grab," we receive a little insight into how important the whole concept of the Red-Marts has become in Thayvian politics.

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-- Candlekeep Forum Code of Conduct

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"So Saith Ed" -- the collected Candlekeep replies of Ed Greenwood

Zhoth'ilam Folio -- The Electronic Misadventures of a Rambling Sage
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Dennis
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Posted - 26 Nov 2010 :  17:34:30  Show Profile Send Dennis a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by dennis

The spies and mind-reading-immune agents are more than enough.



Obviously not, because the shops that you so despise are canon. As is Thay trying other methods of gaining power outside of Thay.



Just because 'tis canon doesn't mean I have to like it. The use of spies to further the Reds' goals looks not enough because WotC has already utilized the Wal-Marts, making it appear (ridiculously) useful when it's in fact bootless.

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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
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Posted - 26 Nov 2010 :  17:37:25  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by dennis

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by dennis

The spies and mind-reading-immune agents are more than enough.



Obviously not, because the shops that you so despise are canon. As is Thay trying other methods of gaining power outside of Thay.



Just because 'tis canon doesn't mean I have to like it. The use of spies to further the Reds' goals looks not enough because WotC has already utilized the Wal-Marts, making it appear (ridiculously) useful when it's in fact bootless.



Your opinion. It is obviously not a universal opinion. Perhaps we should simply agree to disagree?

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Dennis
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Posted - 26 Nov 2010 :  17:59:28  Show Profile Send Dennis a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Indeed. Heheh.

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sleyvas
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Posted - 26 Nov 2010 :  18:12:44  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by Arik

Your logic is true, Wooly. It just doesn't seem to agree with the earlier-established Red qualities of respecting nothing more than magical potency. The slithering serpent or trojan horse approach is undeniably effective, and adds that much more villainous twist to your dagger when you do finally act upon your treacherous plans ... it just doesn't seem as easily "in character" as Reds simply blasting down the gates with fire and sending legions of undead/demon weapons platforms into your cities instead. The strong take what the weak cannot defend, magical mastery is the ultimate measure of strength.

Why the sudden change in tactics? Was Thay feeling a little lonely? Did the game designers feel that Thay needed to be drawn out a little more? How would you encourage all of your divisive scheming Red factions into cooperating in such a grandoise plot?



Well, as I understand it, the Red Wal-Marts weren't universally supported by the Zulkirs. All it would take is a couple of them to say "hey, this openly conquering other nations routine hasn't worked out so well, has it? Maybe we could try something with a chance of success?"

It would only take a handful of the Zulkirs to set this up. And honestly, I'd be surprised if all of those Zulkirs even thought it was a good idea. Some may have, some may have gone along on the off-chance that it worked, some may have joined in just to have something else going they could use against enemies, some may have joined to get potential rivals out of their hair....

Thay has not been a monolithic entity, acting in unison. Thay is your typical hotbed of Machiavellan politics, with everyone jockeying for position against everyone else. All it takes is one person to have a not unreasonable idea, and they'll have a lot of support, for a lot of reasons.

And we have seen Thay trying tactics other than outright conquest, as well. Off the top of my head, I'm recalling how they gained power in Mulmaster, and I'm recalling a female Red Wizard trying to take advantage of Azoun IV's wandering eyes. So it's not unprecedented or out of character for them to try yet another means of gathering power.




Nail ==> Head ==> Smack

Exactly Wooly

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas
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Dennis
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Posted - 26 Nov 2010 :  18:19:23  Show Profile Send Dennis a Private Message  Reply with Quote
OT:

I went to Fullybooked earlier and noticed that Unclean had been reprinted with the new D&D logo.

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sleyvas
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Posted - 26 Nov 2010 :  18:27:21  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by dennis

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by dennis

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by dennis

quote:
Originally posted by sleyvas

However, transmuters, enchanters, illusionists, diviners, and abjurers would probably find this a great way to expand the influence of their school against the other more combat oriented Zulkirs of necromancy, conjuration, and evocation.



Possibly. But then again, why need some silly Wal-Marts when they could attain their goals by using spies or magically hidden agents, which would make more sense as such rather speaks of their 'character.'



That leaves you more energy for your nefarious plots -- which, if discovered, can be more readily covered up/explained if your presence is open and welcomed. Being openly admitted to a city gives you certain advantages you wouldn't have as a hidden interloper, as well -- like the ability to act more openly.



But once discovered, you wouldn't be welcomed at all. Truly a waste of time and resources.



That depends on the nature of the discovery. If the Thayans were well-established, they'd have a variety of ways of dealing with this discovery -- not the least of which would be using local authorities to deal with and/or discredit those who made the discovery.



The spies and/or hidden agents (say, the trusted advisers of certain politicians or the politicians themselves) not yet discovered would be able to discredit any discovery. Hence the uselessness of the 'shops.'




It goes like this (a basic version mind you)...

Governor: "Oh no, there's a nasty bunch of bandits that have been terrorizing the roads"
Enclave Leader: "You know, we've been good friends. I'd be willing to send some of my people and make that problem go away. We'd even do it free."
Governor: "Thank you, I would appreciate that. You know you red wizards have really gotten a bad reputation."

2 months later
Governor: "Hey, thanks for cleaning up those bandits. Did you guys ever recover any of what they stole?"
Enclave Leader: "No, nothing but the minor items we returned. Some of them fled and they may have gotten away with some of their ill-gotten gains. You haven't had further problems have you?"
Governor: "No problem. At least you returned some of it. Had we hired bounty hunters, I bet we wouldn't have gotten any of it. So, what did you do with them?"
Enclave Leader: "Oh, we believed that you wouldn't like having them around here to possibly continue doing harm if they got loose. So, we sent them back to Thay to serve out their sentence, where they can be held more secure. We figured that would be less of a drain on your resources anyway, since jailing them would be a hassle for you. You're fine with that, right?"
Governor: "Well, I guess that's ok, but in the future, please pass it by me if you don't mind. As long as they aren't killing people on the road between here and X, my citizens will be happy."

Of course, the above would only work in the more provincial back areas. In larger more established countries, the Thayans would have to be a bit more careful... but the general idea is the same. Governor X gets what he wants and the Thayans get what they want, and there's noone to say that the Thayans did anything majorly illegal if they were acting upon the decisions of the ruling class.

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas
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sleyvas
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Posted - 26 Nov 2010 :  18:40:58  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by dennis

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by dennis

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by dennis

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by dennis

quote:
Originally posted by sleyvas

However, transmuters, enchanters, illusionists, diviners, and abjurers would probably find this a great way to expand the influence of their school against the other more combat oriented Zulkirs of necromancy, conjuration, and evocation.



Possibly. But then again, why need some silly Wal-Marts when they could attain their goals by using spies or magically hidden agents, which would make more sense as such rather speaks of their 'character.'



That leaves you more energy for your nefarious plots -- which, if discovered, can be more readily covered up/explained if your presence is open and welcomed. Being openly admitted to a city gives you certain advantages you wouldn't have as a hidden interloper, as well -- like the ability to act more openly.



But once discovered, you wouldn't be welcomed at all. Truly a waste of time and resources.



That depends on the nature of the discovery. If the Thayans were well-established, they'd have a variety of ways of dealing with this discovery -- not the least of which would be using local authorities to deal with and/or discredit those who made the discovery.



The spies and/or hidden agents (say, the trusted advisers of certain politicians or the politicians themselves) not yet discovered would be able to discredit any discovery. Hence the uselessness of the 'shops.'



So the secondary goals of gaining money, keeping rivals/apprentices busy or out of your hair, building good will, distributing items that may further help you or hinder foes, all of those things are utterly useless?



YES. With an emphasis on utterly. Gaining money through the shops? No. They have mines, have thieves who are at the same time practitioners of the Art, engage in black markets, sell slaves...the list goes on... Keeping rivals busy through the shops? No. The Reds are pretty smart to devise several other ways to keep their rivals occupied. If you read the HL trilogy, you should know what I mean. Building good will through the shops? Now that's funny. Good and Thay can never be used in one phrase. If deception is all they want, as I mentioned, they can utilize their spies. Distributing items that may further help them or hinder their foes through the shops? What for? The spies and mind-reading-immune agents are more than enough.



And as you've noted, their spies are constantly killing folks who probably have some form of minor protective magic items. So, what do adventurers do when they end up with 6 +1 swords and 7 +1 rings of protection and 4 +1 amulets of natural armor? The same thing the reds are doing... they resell them. But adventurers only get half cost. The reds can resell them at full cost, plus turn around and buy some off adventurers and resell THOSE. In the end, you're just letting your apprentices churn around all the junk items, raking in the money, and using the profit to create that +4 ring of protection you really need. The thing the red wizards are simply doing is realizing
A) wow, we naturally have the resources required to run a magic shop because we've got a ton of apprentices
B) we need to train the apprentices anyway in magic item creation, so let's sell the "beginner" stuff they make
C) making apprentices create magic items also slows their progression, thus they're apprentices to work in my circle longer
D) man, I've got a bunch of low powered magic items I've gotten through killing people that's piling up. Why should I give it to some other wizard and lose half the money when my apprentices can make me double the money

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas
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Dennis
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9933 Posts

Posted - 26 Nov 2010 :  18:53:21  Show Profile Send Dennis a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Perhaps Undead and Unholy had also been reprinted with the D&D logo. But I didn't see them in Fullybooked, Powerbooks, nor in National BS.

Anyway, the results of the poll (so far) don't surprise me. But I was hoping the number of votes for Thay 2.0 would be closer to the winner.

Every beginning has an end.
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Ayrik
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Canada
6263 Posts

Posted - 27 Nov 2010 :  02:20:35  Show Profile Send Ayrik a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
sleyvas
So, what do adventurers do when they end up with 6 +1 swords and 7 +1 rings of protection and 4 +1 amulets of natural armor? The same thing the reds are doing... they resell them. But adventurers only get half cost.
My players hand that sort of candy out to their henchmen and followers. Or use it as bribes and offers to sweeten important deals with NPCs. Of course, without Red-Mart, the "magic shoppe" prices are merely guidelines in my Realms. Magic items, even those of little consequence, are still immensely valuable ... I never liked the Transmute Into Gold approach, it cheapens the magic.

[/Ayrik]
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Dennis
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9933 Posts

Posted - 01 Dec 2010 :  03:06:26  Show Profile Send Dennis a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Does Thay have a role in The Shield of Weeping Ghosts? I know it's set in Rashemen; and since it's Thay neighbor, I thought the Red Wizards might have played a part. I bought it last night, and will read it later. I saw threads of it in the BC. But I'm afraid to stumble upon very important spoilers so I avoid them atm...

Every beginning has an end.
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Elsenrail
Seeker

Poland
72 Posts

Posted - 01 Dec 2010 :  16:29:48  Show Profile Send Elsenrail a Private Message  Reply with Quote
As far as I remember, "Thi Shield..." is all about Rashemen - wychlaran, durthan, a bit of Nar barbarians.
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