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Dennis
Great Reader

9933 Posts

Posted - 06 Nov 2011 :  19:30:36  Show Profile Send Dennis a Private Message

One more query; a quick one:

Is it possible for a veteran captain and crew with a good enough ship to circumnavigate Toril without any magical aid? If so, how long would it take them to complete it?

Every beginning has an end.
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createvmind
Senior Scribe

490 Posts

Posted - 06 Nov 2011 :  23:11:58  Show Profile  Visit createvmind's Homepage Send createvmind a Private Message
Hello All,

Follow up on Bag of Holding question, what would be the lifespan of a standard bag of holding before it begins to fray magically, more than physically? What activity increases the "fraying" of BoH, travel through various planes, water or air pressure, the bag being bombarded by variety of effects or elements, all things that in appearance don't appear to damage the actual leather bag or case or coffer or such but wreaks havoc with the magical properties.

I assume if someone loses memory they will be unable to retrieve specific known item from BoH, or are there types of bags that can be told to spill all known and unknown content within it, is this a standard creation fail-safe though is my question.

I assume over the ages, many such Boh/items has been lost or punctured, in your homebrew/test setting have any intelligent beings gleaned where stuff likely finds itself when such ruptures occur, is there a place in the planes where a huge mound of items is just sitting waiting to be found or has been found and is farmed?

What effect do Stasis and Entrapment type spells have on such BoH items especially if indeed a living being inside at time spell takes effect?


Thank You again.

Edited by - createvmind on 06 Nov 2011 23:13:53
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rjfras
Learned Scribe

261 Posts

Posted - 07 Nov 2011 :  01:14:46  Show Profile  Visit rjfras's Homepage Send rjfras a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by createvmind

Hello All,

I assume if someone loses memory they will be unable to retrieve specific known item from BoH, or are there types of bags that can be told to spill all known and unknown content within it, is this a standard creation fail-safe though is my question.

Thank You again.


per the dmg: If a bag of holding is turned inside out, its contents spill out, unharmed, but the bag must be put right before it can be used again.
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braunusvald
Acolyte

USA
13 Posts

Posted - 07 Nov 2011 :  02:22:54  Show Profile  Visit braunusvald's Homepage Send braunusvald a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by Eldacar

Lastly, if they are indeed possible and do exist within the Realms, are there any particularly well-known (or even famous/infamous) hybrid dragons? And could Ed give any information about their lairs, hunting grounds, possible plots they might have underway, enemies, and so on and so forth? Or less-known ones, if they prefer to keep quiet and work from the shadows.



Garnet, in Myth Drannor, wasn't a cross-breed, but had been magically modified while in the egg and was essentially a hybrid.



If I remember correctly 2E spelljammer for Realms Space has a copper/red cross that hangs around the same area as Elminsters hide away... and thinks that Els' a honorable kind of guy

Could a Kercpa swing a Rod of lordly Might? All hail the mighty rodent!
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Dennis
Great Reader

9933 Posts

Posted - 07 Nov 2011 :  04:05:37  Show Profile Send Dennis a Private Message

Hi, Ed!

I feel this is NDA, but there's no harm in trying, right?

Can you reveal anything that would slake our curiosity about "The Master" that Ao serves? If that seems too broad a question, then I'd narrow it down to these things about the said entity:

-Who saw the need to "create" it?
-What are its explicit commands to Ao?
-Are their beings in Toril who have any idea about its existence?
-Do all or some deities in the various pantheons know of its existence?
-Is it as neutral as Ao appears to be?

[Waiting for a reply that would say anything other than the half-expected NDA.]

Every beginning has an end.
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
29641 Posts

Posted - 07 Nov 2011 :  04:17:14  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by braunusvald

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by Eldacar

Lastly, if they are indeed possible and do exist within the Realms, are there any particularly well-known (or even famous/infamous) hybrid dragons? And could Ed give any information about their lairs, hunting grounds, possible plots they might have underway, enemies, and so on and so forth? Or less-known ones, if they prefer to keep quiet and work from the shadows.



Garnet, in Myth Drannor, wasn't a cross-breed, but had been magically modified while in the egg and was essentially a hybrid.



If I remember correctly 2E spelljammer for Realms Space has a copper/red cross that hangs around the same area as Elminsters hide away... and thinks that Els' a honorable kind of guy



Firebrand Flametongue. He's described as a red dragon, but later it does say he has red and copper blood. I'd say he might be a generation or two from the original hybrid.

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Penknight
Senior Scribe

USA
536 Posts

Posted - 07 Nov 2011 :  05:41:10  Show Profile Send Penknight a Private Message
Hello again! I was wondering if Mr. Greenwood could say a bit more about Lothen. Primarily, where did those that were learning the bladesong go for instruction in the city? Was there an Academy of Magic and Arms there as there is in Evereska, or were private instructors procured by the noble families for those that wished to learn? And what about those that wished to learn the path of the arcane archer? I have a few characters from there that are fey'ri as some of you know, and I was honestly curious about how they'd have been trained. Did the Ealoeth family (back when Siluvanede was a living empire) have any instructors there that taught the art of war or the Art? Any that were bladesingers themselves? I have three characters that are members of that family, and would love to know more about the house itself in that time. I know that they were Myth Drannor prior to the fall, and was also curious if a branch of the family held titles, lands or anything else inside the City of Silver Spires. Were they a part of the city and its affairs? Did ever an Ealoeth sit upon the seat of power of Lothen or Siluvanede itself? Are there still members of House Ealoeth alive in the Realms in 1374, or are my characters the last of that house?

Also, I was curious about Telardon, another city of Siluvanede. What purpose did the city serve? Was it just a place where the Art was practiced and items of power were forged? Can you elaborate on any of the items that came from the City of Emerald Spires? In my campaign, I have it where my fey'ri's father (a gold elven half-fiend and pledged to House Dlardrageth) left his training at the academy in Lothen and journeyed to Telardon for a deeper connection to his wizardry, as well as to have a couple of items forged there. One being a mithril longsword that he carried through the final days of his training as a bladesinger in the form used by the Dlardrageths and those pledged to them, and through the Seven Citadels War until he had himself placed in a temporal stasis and his family's tower in the High Forest cloaked by an archmage that served his cause in the war. There were clues left behind for his son to find him once he was freed from Nar'Kerymhoarth. The other item he had crafted and enchanted there being a powerful elven longbow. Would Telardon have been the place to go for further instruction as well as having items crafted by master smiths and enchanted? Also, in case Lothen does not have an academy of magic and arms, where would my two characters from that era have gone for their instruction in the bladesong and as a spell archer?

Thank you for your time and for your insights into such an interesting time and people.

Telethian Phoenix
Pathfinder Reference Document

Edited by - Penknight on 07 Nov 2011 05:43:21
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The Sage
Procrastinator Most High
Moderator

Australia
31683 Posts

Posted - 07 Nov 2011 :  07:49:59  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
quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by braunusvald

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by Eldacar

Lastly, if they are indeed possible and do exist within the Realms, are there any particularly well-known (or even famous/infamous) hybrid dragons? And could Ed give any information about their lairs, hunting grounds, possible plots they might have underway, enemies, and so on and so forth? Or less-known ones, if they prefer to keep quiet and work from the shadows.



Garnet, in Myth Drannor, wasn't a cross-breed, but had been magically modified while in the egg and was essentially a hybrid.



If I remember correctly 2E spelljammer for Realms Space has a copper/red cross that hangs around the same area as Elminsters hide away... and thinks that Els' a honorable kind of guy



Firebrand Flametongue. He's described as a red dragon, but later it does say he has red and copper blood. I'd say he might be a generation or two from the original hybrid.

I always thought that the fact Flametongue's noted as "changing," [possibly in his overall behaviour] was partly the result of his "copper" hybrid heritage perhaps asserting itself over that of his "red"-borne draconic inclinations.

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crazedventurers
Master of Realmslore

United Kingdom
1073 Posts

Posted - 07 Nov 2011 :  09:11:25  Show Profile  Visit crazedventurers's Homepage Send crazedventurers a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Eldacar
(This one is more specific) What would a half-gold silver dragon (i.e. silver dragon dominant) or a half-silver gold dragon (i.e. gold dragon dominant) look like, respectively? How different from their parents would they be in terms of scale colour, general body structure (e.g. gold dragons have that long, fin-like wing setup and the beard-tendrils, while silver dragons have a crest and different head structure), and so on and so forth?


Well that would be an electrum dragon, designed by Ed and first featured in Dragon issue 74. For a 1E dragon it is powerful, with innate spell use as well as magical spells use as per normal dragons (based on age category), its breath weapon is an unstable mix of enfeeblement or confusion and sometimes both at the same time

A little piece from said issue

"The electrum dragon (Draco Magus electrum) is a rare, solitary creature who dwells far from civilization, usually in mountainous areas, and always lairs in a cavern or stone building. It is usually peaceful and philosophical in nature, but can be a formidable fighter if aroused. Electrum dragons enjoy trading, bargaining, and hilosophical debate. They hoard things of beauty (such as finely crafted items) rather than wealth per se"

Cheers

Damian
ps issue 74 is a good one as the next article after the electrum dragon features swords of the Realms that later appeared in FR4 The Magister (Adjatha, 'The Drinker'; Ilbratha, 'Mistress of Battle'; Namara, 'The Sword That Never Sleeps' et al)

A question or two if I may circa 1340-1380 DR or so

Is magical sword crafting prevalent in the late 14th century DR reckoning, (before the 'Thayvian Magical Shoppes' from 3E arrive).

If so, who in the Realms is well known as as a crafter and enchanter of magical swords and is willing to create bespoke magical swords in return for payment and/or quests?

Thanks Ed

So saith Ed. I've never said he was sane, have I?
Gods, all this writing and he's running a constant fantasy version of Coronation Street in his head, too. .
shudder,
love to all,
THO
Candlekeep Forum 7 May 2005

Edited by - crazedventurers on 07 Nov 2011 09:30:52
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The Hooded One
Lady Herald of Realmslore

5036 Posts

Posted - 07 Nov 2011 :  22:57:34  Show Profile  Visit The Hooded One's Homepage Send The Hooded One a Private Message
Hi again, all.
I bring a reply from Ed to Dennis, re. this: "Hi, Ed! I wonder, what exactly drove the Netherese to create flying enclaves? Was it just for the simple fact that they wanted to stand literally above all the other civilizations? Perhaps to slake their wanderlust, if they had one? Or did they think it the most convenient and fastest way of expanding their empire?"
Ed responds:

Hi, Dennis. sorry, but none of the above (though some of those motivations might have been true for certain individual archwizards). As I've said before, at the Keep and elsewhere, the various archwizards were far more individuals pursuing their own personal interests than they were a cohesive 'empire.' A FEW of them wanted to explore and travel, and a few wanted to conquer or expand their influence, but the Netherese in general did not consider themselves a 'civilization' in conflict or rivalry with other 'civilizations.' It's simply wrong to think of them as a group that cooperated often on much of anything, let alone cultural conquest. (For instance, there was never any such thing as a "Netherese army.")
In the past I've explained that floating cities developed initially as a way of creating environments under the complete control of their creating archwizard, but still being near to the "underlings" (also Netherese) who gathered foodstuffs or hunted for them or farmed them, and mined (etc.) for various other things the archwizards needed. It had to do with dominance of each other (and beasts that happened to be handy), not other peoples. When you post: "the simple fact that they wanted to stand literally above all the other civilizations," there's a problem: it's not a simple fact, or even a fact at all.
A few individual Netherese, notably Karsus and some of the inhabitants of Shade, wanted to be "above" all others - - but that's not true of the Netherese as a race, collectively. Any more than it would be correct to say, for example, "All Americans play football and baseball, and do all their cooking on barbecues." Certainly SOME Americans may do all three of these, but...
And what later humans, looking back, call "the Netherese empire" was anything but. It's our later way of mentally collecting together scores of completely independent city-states and flying cities.
Many flying cities were built by workers forced to build them by archwizards who wanted to "keep up with" rival archwizards, or who were fascinated by the idea of building an environment whose physical laws were spell-controlled and -determined, and wanted to benefit by having one of their own.


So saith Ed. Who created Netheril, its flying cities, the Realms around them, and so on...
love to all,
THO
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The Hooded One
Lady Herald of Realmslore

5036 Posts

Posted - 07 Nov 2011 :  23:03:34  Show Profile  Visit The Hooded One's Homepage Send The Hooded One a Private Message
And Dennis, I can make a start at answering your next question (about circumnavigation without magical aid) without reference to Ed, with this:
The answer has to be "yes," because we know it's been done, more than once, in the past (not often, but then the need and interest to do so would be rare, given that most folk in the Realms don't even think of themselves as dwelling on a round planet, and live lives that wouldn't be concerned with exploring the unknown and certainly not with "trying to do something no one has done before").
And we also know, by reference to Ed's past comments, that the "how long" answer is going to have "it depends on the weather and the time of year and therefore the currents" in it, regardless of whether or not you're asking about sea travel, undersea travel, or aerial travel.
But of course, off your query goes to Ed for a real reply...though I must caution that he's REALLY busy right now...
love,
THO
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The Hooded One
Lady Herald of Realmslore

5036 Posts

Posted - 07 Nov 2011 :  23:08:47  Show Profile  Visit The Hooded One's Homepage Send The Hooded One a Private Message
. . . but not so busy, it seems, that he can't send replies right away.
Here's a response to this query from Dennis: "Hi, Ed! I feel this is NDA, but there's no harm in trying, right?
Can you reveal anything that would slake our curiosity about "The Master" that Ao serves? If that seems too broad a question, then I'd narrow it down to these things about the said entity:
-Who saw the need to "create" it?
-What are its explicit commands to Ao?
-Are their beings in Toril who have any idea about its existence?
-Do all or some deities in the various pantheons know of its existence?
-Is it as neutral as Ao appears to be?
[Waiting for a reply that would say anything other than the half-expected NDA.]"
Ed replies:


No, I can't. Sorry.
Or to be more specific:
-Who saw the need to "create" it?
Someone at TSR (no, I don't kknow who).

-What are its explicit commands to Ao?
NDA.
-Are there beings in Toril who have any idea about its existence?
NDA.
-Do all or some deities in the various pantheons know of its existence?
NDA.
-Is it as neutral as Ao appears to be?
It seems to be, but that's just a personal impression.

So saith Ed. Who has watched many a scribe crash into NDA walls and bounce off again...
love,
THO
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The Hooded One
Lady Herald of Realmslore

5036 Posts

Posted - 07 Nov 2011 :  23:20:20  Show Profile  Visit The Hooded One's Homepage Send The Hooded One a Private Message
Hi again, all!
I find myself able to start a reply for Damian, too...especially after his bang-on correct assist with the electrum dragon (which evokes fond memories of good old adventuring days in me).
So, re. this: "Is magical sword crafting prevalent in the late 14th century DR reckoning, (before the 'Thayvian Magical Shoppes' from 3E arrive).
If so, who in the Realms is well known as as a crafter and enchanter of magical swords and is willing to create bespoke magical swords in return for payment and/or quests?"

I can say this much, from consulting Ed's notes:
Probably not "prevalent," but there are known, public makers of magical swords, including Brian the Swordmaster in Waterdeep (who even has a city street named after him), and several in Amn, Calimshan, and the Tashalar - - not to mention dwarven makers in Mirabar.
Details of all of these will have to wait for Ed, I'm afraid...
love,
THO

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createvmind
Senior Scribe

490 Posts

Posted - 08 Nov 2011 :  00:02:34  Show Profile  Visit createvmind's Homepage Send createvmind a Private Message
I too have en enchantment question of sorts, Ed in your test/brew Faerun would there be any somewhat social Eldritch giant who could be bargained with to enchant giant-sized weapon/armor?

Who would be some of the best weaponsmith/armorsmith of giant weapons and armor in faerun or nearby..ha, if a human-sized PC had no recourse to try and fulfill a bargain to have giant weapon enhanced magically what variation would he need to figure out to do so, are there any of any renown in Faerun?

Basically my PC's seek to gain favor from a (unknown to them he is an eldritch Giant) Jarl and seek to give him a magical weapon they hope will convince him to aid them against other giants. They first need to find a weapon and having ample coin want it to be made of admantine so I'm wondering if they have any chance of finding someone who creates weapons that size of the precious metal on FAERUN first of all.

Secondly they want to give it the giant-bane property and I'm of exactly what is required to do this and if that knowledge would be something that offends the Jarl in the first place as well as flaming enhancements, again if they did have the weapon would imbuing it be as challenging as I for some reason think it is and can they mess up and give it wrong enchantment ot make it cursed/flawed and not know?

Really appreciate any detailed info on anything, thanks.
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crazedventurers
Master of Realmslore

United Kingdom
1073 Posts

Posted - 08 Nov 2011 :  00:06:29  Show Profile  Visit crazedventurers's Homepage Send crazedventurers a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by The Hooded One

Hi again, all!
I find myself able to start a reply for Damian, too...especially after his bang-on correct assist with the electrum dragon (which evokes fond memories of good old adventuring days in me).
I can say this much, from consulting Ed's notes:
Probably not "prevalent," but there are known, public makers of magical swords, including Brian the Swordmaster in Waterdeep (who even has a city street named after him), and several in Amn, Calimshan, and the Tashalar - - not to mention dwarven makers in Mirabar.
Details of all of these will have to wait for Ed, I'm afraid...
love,
THO



My Thanks good lady for the quick response, I can wait patiently for Ed to peek up from the ever growing list of questions and eventually get to mine for a fuller answer (after he finishes all the paid for writing jobs he has to do)

Now then, an electrum dragon from the home campaign you say, hmmm can this lowly aspiring scribe get you to tell just a little bit more ?

Best wishes to all

Cheers

Damian

So saith Ed. I've never said he was sane, have I?
Gods, all this writing and he's running a constant fantasy version of Coronation Street in his head, too. .
shudder,
love to all,
THO
Candlekeep Forum 7 May 2005
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Azuth
Senior Scribe

USA
402 Posts

Posted - 08 Nov 2011 :  01:28:00  Show Profile  Visit Azuth's Homepage Send Azuth a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by The Hooded One

. . . but not so busy, it seems, that he can't send replies right away.
Here's a response to this query from Dennis: "Hi, Ed! I feel this is NDA, but there's no harm in trying, right?
Can you reveal anything that would slake our curiosity about "The Master" that Ao serves? If that seems too broad a question, then I'd narrow it down to these things about the said entity:
-Who saw the need to "create" it?
-What are its explicit commands to Ao?
-Are their beings in Toril who have any idea about its existence?
-Do all or some deities in the various pantheons know of its existence?
-Is it as neutral as Ao appears to be?
[Waiting for a reply that would say anything other than the half-expected NDA.]"
Ed replies:


No, I can't. Sorry.
Or to be more specific:
-Who saw the need to "create" it?
Someone at TSR (no, I don't kknow who).

-What are its explicit commands to Ao?
NDA.
-Are there beings in Toril who have any idea about its existence?
NDA.
-Do all or some deities in the various pantheons know of its existence?
NDA.
-Is it as neutral as Ao appears to be?
It seems to be, but that's just a personal impression.

So saith Ed. Who has watched many a scribe crash into NDA walls and bounce off again...
love,
THO





Good Lady THO: Is the origin of Ao's name NDA? I always thought it fun to presume it is based on "Alpha to Omega" even though I know it's not truly based on Greek letters. I'm just curious as to the origins of the name - be it an in Realms explanation or just "So and so through it was easy for Bane to say."
Cheers!

Azuth


Azuth, the First Magister
Lord of All Spells

The greatest expression of creativity is through Art.
Offense can never be given, only taken.
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Dennis
Great Reader

9933 Posts

Posted - 08 Nov 2011 :  03:07:12  Show Profile Send Dennis a Private Message

Thank you, Ed and THO! I very much appreciate your taking time to read and answer my queries despite your hectic schedule.

Every beginning has an end.
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The Sage
Procrastinator Most High
Moderator

Australia
31683 Posts

Posted - 08 Nov 2011 :  03:07:13  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
While Ed will likely have more, I'll just note that Ao was not something Ed created. TSR come up with the concept of Ao and he was brought into the setting during the Time of Troubles -- through the 1e to 2e change over. As it stands, Ed has no idea on where TSR came up with the concept of Ao.

Candlekeep Forums Moderator

Candlekeep - The Library of Forgotten Realms Lore
http://www.candlekeep.com
-- Candlekeep Forum Code of Conduct

Scribe for the Candlekeep Compendium -- Volume IX now available (Oct 2007)

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

Zhoth'ilam Folio -- The Electronic Misadventures of a Rambling Sage
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Markustay
Realms Explorer extraordinaire

USA
13102 Posts

Posted - 08 Nov 2011 :  04:06:07  Show Profile Send Markustay a Private Message
I would just like to remind folks of something I brought up in the past, and every-so-often feel compelled to repeat:

The language, colloquialisms ('folksy' way of talking), names (and in this case AO) are how an American author/designer interprets things from The Realms, are NOT a direct translation, but rather a way of putting it to us - the Earth-reader - in a way we can understand.

Add to that now that Ao is a being that is only known (for the most part) to beings that are entirely energy, unless they want to take a physical form. Very few purely physical (ie, 'mortal') beings are aware of his existence, and therefor are in no position to talk about Ao. What I am trying to say is that 'Ao' is probably more of a concept conveyed between powers mentally - 'Ao' itself is as close as our mortal minds can handle what Ao actually is. In Prince of Lies, Oghma teaches Mystra to 'see' what other powers are able to see (inside cynosure) - a trick he himself cannot perform (her own unique existence allows her to do things other powers cannot, which is probably also covered by many NDAs). What that teaches us is that each god's own, personal 'reality' is entirely subjective, based on it's portfolio. They each envision something different in Ao's presence - Ao is NOT a physical being, and his form is completely subject to the viewers concept of him.

As would be his name.

'Ao' is how the earth author interpreted the concept of the Overgod to us, the readers. The Author probably felt that he/they (TSR) didn't want people to think GOD himself starred in an RPG-setting novel, so he hinted at the end that even an Overpower has something to answer to (even if that something is the sentience of the universe itself, like Eternity in Marvel comics). Too much has been revealed already, and a little mystery was needed, because there will always be "things mortals are not meant to know". By ending the novel in that manner, we are left with further questions - isn't that the purpose of life? To strive for answers? I think it would be rather boring if we were privy to all of life's mysteries.

Anyhow, I am sorry I entered 'soapbox mode' again. I just think readers should not take things too literally - authors are like translators, and they do their best to convey concepts - the words themselves are secondary to that.

"I have never in my life learned anything from any man who agreed with me" --- Dudley Field Malone


Edited by - Markustay on 08 Nov 2011 04:08:47
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Portella
Learned Scribe

United Kingdom
239 Posts

Posted - 08 Nov 2011 :  15:32:00  Show Profile  Visit Portella's Homepage Send Portella a Private Message
That is a bit of an out worldly view on the subject, like "alien" names, in metaphorical sense, that are so complex in quantum negativity, quasi-multiversical way that it is impossible to write even speak it in common or even our most complex languages. Were you to even think about thinking you saw or heard his real name you would go mad or just seize to exist. So we have erected barriers much like the so called NDA's to protect the mortal mind, however fear not you may call him AO (short of Aouch).


I do have a question to Master Greenwood

But a bit of back ground first, in japan they did something called Replays. Replays are not novels, but transcripts of RPG sessions, meant to both hold the interest of readers and convey the events that took place.

I was wondering if you would, or have already, consider doing something similar to this for your game sessions?

Are you even allowed? Is the knights, your players characters, lost or given rights for them to be used in the novels for forgotten realms?

Purple you say?!

Twitter ramblings...
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crazedventurers
Master of Realmslore

United Kingdom
1073 Posts

Posted - 08 Nov 2011 :  18:21:13  Show Profile  Visit crazedventurers's Homepage Send crazedventurers a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Portella
but transcripts of RPG sessions, meant to both hold the interest of readers and convey the events that took place.
I was wondering if you would, or have already, consider doing something similar to this for your game sessions?



To quote from the OGBS
Thanks to (insert Ed's players from the home campaign for various things and then onto), "Andrew Dewar, who encouraged us all to record all of the fun on paper, to inflict on others later (Doust Sulwood and Rathan Thentraver)"

I think it is very well documented that Ed (and his players) write copious notes of gameplay as it happens and they store it all for future use.

I am sure that in one of the 'so saith ed' files there is an example of gameplay notes from the home campaign (something regarding various folks attending the Knights in Shadowdale looking for treaties, alliances and trade, whilst the players try to figure out what is happening to their trade interests in Sembia).

Cheers

Damian

edit: On January 22, 2008 THO said:
As for our playing habits: we all use clipboards and make notes. Brief, occasional notes, because we all value the roleplaying (acting) over mentally "stepping out of the game" to keep records. All of us recall things from memory (more realistic, yes? In the middle of a dungeon, our characters would have to rely on their memories and perhaps a hand-drawn map, and not a failing cabinet full of notes, after all), but Andrew Dewar and Ian Hunter were the best at actually putting names, times, and other specifics onto everyone else's "We've seen this guy before, I KNOW we have" recollections.
So saith me.
love,
THO

edit 2
When play in the Realms began, I used to write out salient points of all play sessions in longhand in an endless series of examination books (my father taught in a university, and "blank" examination books had to be rounded up and destroyed, except that like anyone who grew up fatherless in the lean Second World War years in rural Ontario, he held the view that one NEVER throws away unused paper [or string, or...]). All PC names I wrote in block caps for ease of finding them at a glance, and typical notes would run something like this:

"[Realmsdate]: FLORIN, ISLIF, and JHESSAIL went to the Old Skull to dine and meet incoming caravan for news. TORM to Lharessa's for some paying fun, observed known Zhent agent (tall man with scarred ear, pale yellow eyes) departing through back door; did not pursue. FLORIN thought one caravan merchant might be THE SIMBUL in disguise, but "he" smilingly evaded questions. F, I, J left the inn late, and when walking to the Twisted Tower across meadow were attacked by six (?) black-clad men who gated in, and had sleep-venomed daggers. Slew four, but bodies "winked" out. Two fled through gates, JHESSAIL reduced to 4 hp and "slept," brought to Old Skull for healing."

(et cetera): these notes mentioned all magic items gained, lost, and used up, all PC and important NPC deaths, quotable quotes by PCs and others, NPC capsule descriptions ("red eyes, limps, untidy") in the margins.

Now, when my recall is gone, I can re-read the notes and often be jogged into remembering whose house we were playing at, the weather, what we ate, strange things worn (or taken off!), and even jokes. And yes, I had to scribble darned fast.

So saith Ed. I've never said he was sane, have I?
Gods, all this writing and he's running a constant fantasy version of Coronation Street in his head, too. .
shudder,
love to all,
THO
Candlekeep Forum 7 May 2005

Edited by - crazedventurers on 08 Nov 2011 18:34:16
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crazedventurers
Master of Realmslore

United Kingdom
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Posted - 08 Nov 2011 :  18:37:49  Show Profile  Visit crazedventurers's Homepage Send crazedventurers a Private Message
AHA - I have found the relevant post regarding Ed's copious note making, as you can see, it is fairly easy to follow and not complicated at all!



Cheers

Damian
***************

August 10, 2005: Hi again, fellow scribes. Here's the second half of Ed's reply (the subplots examples),

Here's Ed:

For example, to select a time at random, let's pick a particular play session not long after the Knights are settled in Shadowdale, and the senior Knights have foisted the lordship onto Mourngrym. (Cormyr hasn't yet sent Shaerl Rowanmantle to Shadowdale.) A quick glance at my notes tells me the following subplots were unfolding at the beginning of that play session (which began with my players roleplaying a Knights' council-of-war, in which they sat down together to decide what they wanted to do):

Three envoys to the Tower of Ashaba:

1. Merchant coster from Hillsfar wants free land to establish waystables with warehousing (walled compound), pointing out employment and tax income Shadowdale will get; Maalthiir intends to use it for spying, of course, subverting local youths and oldsters with drugs (but doesn't know one of his envoys is a Zhent agent).

2. Envoy from the Church of Torm (sent from the temple in Tantras), asking for free dale land and perpetual immunity from taxes, in return for establishing a large temple on the granted land, and agreeing to provide therein shelter (with granaries), arms, and training in vigilance and war to all folk of Shadowdale, and establishing temple patrols to watch for attacking forces approaching Shadowdale. Will further offer to provide caravans with armed escorts from Shadowdale to next settlement on every route, if Mourngrym seems unwilling.

3. Envoy from the Crown of Cormyr to Mourngrym, asking permission to establish an official trade factor (agent) of Cormyr in the dale (office and residence), entirely at Cormyr's own expense (staffed in part by War Wizards; envoys also War Wizards). Legitimate offer, but trading office would also become local spying base for Cormyr; envoys making same offer to Mistledale at same time.

Lanseril seeking senior druid dwelling somewhere nigh Semberholme, for guidance, training, and to share information about spreading monsters.

Individual merchants coming to town to buy some of the empty cottages of folk killed in the last Zhent attack, and establish themselves away from the feuds and expense of Sembia; are really sponsored spies of ambitious Sembian merchants seeking to establish way-caches for drugs, stolen goods, and kidnapped rivals well outside Sembia yet within reach of Sembia.

One of these (Imbur Taerazalan) works for the Gemfingers merchant cabal of Ordulin, who intend to covertly conquer the Dales one by one, establishing their own "shadow territories" that can be "sold off" to Sembia (surrendered to become officially part of Sembia, in return for large cash payments).

Jhessail trying to decipher the coded pages of the Dark Tome without Elminster discovering she has it (assisted by Islif and the Harper mage Aundas [a War Wizard spy], who are trying to keep her alive; some of the runes are magical traps, others are gates to strongholds all across the Realms, now disused and dangerous monster- and undead-roamed "dungeons").

The cabal of local Shadowdale merchants running the mill (since the Knights uncovered and slew the Zhent agents who formerly ran it) have begun to die, one after another, under mysterious circumstances. The Knights are trying to protect them and discover who's doing the killings. The Zhents, of course, but: by means of magic from afar? Agents hidden in Shadowdale or [planted years ago] among the folk of Shadowdale, attacking the merchants by stealth, when they can catch one alone? Or is one of the cabal of merchants doing the killings? [yes!] If so, just to gain control of the mill himself, or become the senior and dominant member if Mounrgrym "appoints" replacement merchants? [no] Or is the killer an undercover Zhent agent? [yes]

The mysterious "noble lady of Tethyr" who's just arrived in town with large entourage and tried to rent the disused farm north of Fox Ridge for "a tenday of relaxation" (and came to Mourngrym's attention because of her steward's attempts to arrange this accommodation, and so got invited to evenfeast at the Tower so he could give her the once-over) isn't a noble lady of Tethyr at all, but rather a noblewoman of Waterdeep AND a former flame of Mourngrym's, sent here by her parents to learn if Mourngrym is the Amcathra who knows where the best friend of his youth [this lady's oldest brother] hid the family magic before he died (he died in Mourngrym's arms, while off on an "adventure"). She'll try to seduce Mourngrym, and if she likes it in Shadowdale, ride the situation for all she's worth, sending the information she gains back to her kin via her steward.

The visiting dancer Florin sought to seduce so as to get alone to (with Jhessail's help) mind-ream, thinking her a Zhent agent, who turned out instead to be a doppelganger or some other sort of tentacled shapechanger (ere she got away), has openly returned to the dale with her troupe. But is this the "real" dancer, having nothing to do with the shapechanger? [yes] Or the shapechanger back again, for a rematch? [no: the shapechanger has already returned to Shadowdale as short-coin farmworker, and is watching the Knights from afar, awaiting the right chance to slay and impersonate a Tower guard. Shapechanger is an agent for Tharltan, the wizard of Saerloon who wants to take over Shadowdale, and has orders to slay and impersonate Mourngrym, and then begin manipulating the Knights, singly, into situations where they can be killed]. This "real" dancer is a spy for a Witch of Rashemen, and will flee the Knights in a suspicious manner (fearing they'll discover her secret), perhaps leading them into the clutches of the Fang.

The Fang [band of six assassins who always work together] are lurking in Shadowdale, posing as painters and roofers (slate shingles; they do good work, are pricing themselves very cheaply, and so are winning work up and down the dale roads, fixing too-long-neglected cottages) as they await a good chance to fulfill their commission from Rauthur of the Cult of the Dragon to kill Florin Falconhand. [Remember: all magically protected against farscrying and thought-reading.] One of them will ask audience with Mourngrym, boldly trying to get a commission to work on the Tower of Ashaba - - really to see as much as he can of its layout, even if work offer rejected. Will try to befriend chambermaids, just to try to get an eventual 'in' at the Tower.

Jonczer of Scardale will make another appeal to Shadowdale to use the Knights to establish regular 'swift and silent' trade runs between the two dales. He wants to have a way to spirit his wealth out of the dale without trying to carry it himself, to have a reason for entry into the Tower of Ashaba, and (eventually) to frame the Knights for the murders he's going to try to accomplish, to weaken all outlander agents in Scardale except the Zhents.

Phaerlarra [fat old Tower maidservant, suggested by Jhaele when the Knights first arrived] will make another play for Doust, hinting that she's of noble birth (the Troehands are actually descended from two bastard royal heirs who married commoners, though a female Huntsilver did marry into the family much later) and her "family secrets" could enrich all of the Knights, if they learn everything. She knows she really has nothing to offer, but the royal connection (though not its precise nature) has always been a deep family secret, and she'd love to somehow get the Knights to track down the truth. Why can't they see her true worth?

Merith's investments in Sembia are turning sour - - and someone is trying to trace him through them! He'll get the second "bad news" note this week, from a Harper telling him it was found after Dathjathra was found murdered, and her murderer was interrupted (but managed to escape) while busily copying out all of her missives! Who's trying to track down elves investing in Sembian trade, and why?

Jhessail's tracing spell will find just one thing out of all that was stolen from Jhaele's office: stashed in a hollow tree at the east end of Fox Ridge is a single sheet of her parchment, rolled into a bone tube and with fresh writing on it (Jhaele's stolen ink, but very recent writing - - and the ink and quills are gone, along with everything else, carried far beyond the range of Jhessail's spell, well out of the dale), listing sixteen villagers ["the Mirrorman list"]. Why are these Dalefolk listed (what's the link between them)? Who wrote the list, and why was it stashed in the tree? Who was intended to find and presumably act on it, and why? Questions for the Knights to ponder...

So saith Ed.

Looking at this, I'd say he's chosen a "quiet time" (in terms of subplots): relatively quiet probably because we Knights weren't yet generating much in the way of subplots of our own, by pursuing our own interests and agendas. Once we started doing that, life became a whirlwind of "not enough time" and "let's DO it!" and "Now - - strike now, before they - -" and Ed sitting there grinning while we took over and truly became the heroes, imposing our wills on the Realms rather than reacting to what he threw at us.

Ed probably chose this quiet moment purely for reasons of brevity.

Erik, can you see why this would make fascinating episodic soap opera but an "impossible" FR novel? Arlenion, these are rather simple subplots, so they should be readily adaptable for any campaign. I noticed none of them is one of Ed's trademark "big, ongoing mysteries," so be sure to concoct one of those, too.

love to all,
THO

So saith Ed. I've never said he was sane, have I?
Gods, all this writing and he's running a constant fantasy version of Coronation Street in his head, too. .
shudder,
love to all,
THO
Candlekeep Forum 7 May 2005
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Azuth
Senior Scribe

USA
402 Posts

Posted - 08 Nov 2011 :  18:41:56  Show Profile  Visit Azuth's Homepage Send Azuth a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Markustay

I would just like to remind folks of something I brought up in the past, and every-so-often feel compelled to repeat:

The language, colloquialisms ('folksy' way of talking), names (and in this case AO) are how an American author/designer interprets things from The Realms, are NOT a direct translation, but rather a way of putting it to us - the Earth-reader - in a way we can understand.

<snip>

Anyhow, I am sorry I entered 'soapbox mode' again. I just think readers should not take things too literally - authors are like translators, and they do their best to convey concepts - the words themselves are secondary to that.




I don't disagree, Mark, I am just curious if Ed has any knowledge of how the name came about in the real world. My query has nothing to do with anything other than the creative process (or lack thereof?) involved in naming the most powerful being in Realmspace: nothing more. I'm equally curious about the deity names, but I'd hate to ask Ed about all of them.

Cheers,

Azuth


Azuth, the First Magister
Lord of All Spells

The greatest expression of creativity is through Art.
Offense can never be given, only taken.
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Hoondatha
Great Reader

USA
2376 Posts

Posted - 08 Nov 2011 :  19:50:44  Show Profile  Visit Hoondatha's Homepage Send Hoondatha a Private Message
Hello all. I have two (unrelated) queries that I've been sitting on for a while, and figured I'd toss into the mix.

First of all, can Ed tell us more about the First Battle of Shadowdale? It's always been overshadowed by the Second Battle which happened during the Time of Troubles (iirc) a year later, but I'm curious about this first major attempt by the Zhents to conquer the dale. Also, THO, has the home campaign reached that point yet, and if so, can you share a Knights-level view of the chaos?

My second question is about the elves of the Moonwood, which is another area that doesn't get a lot of love. We know that there are both elves and drow there, and they've shown up in other peoples' lives (ie: Alustriel, Drizzt), but nowhere is there much in the way of concrete info. In the 1340-1350's time frame, how many elves and drow are there in the Moonwood? Where do they live? How are the relations between the two (since most of the drow are Eilistraeen)? And how would the elves react to an orc horde coming their way?

Thanks as always for the endless, wonderful lore.

Doggedly converting 3e back to what D&D should be...
Sigh... And now 4e as well.
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crazedventurers
Master of Realmslore

United Kingdom
1073 Posts

Posted - 08 Nov 2011 :  21:00:38  Show Profile  Visit crazedventurers's Homepage Send crazedventurers a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Hoondatha
First of all, can Ed tell us more about the First Battle of Shadowdale? It's always been overshadowed by the Second Battle which happened during the Time of Troubles (iirc) a year later, but I'm curious about this first major attempt by the Zhents to conquer the dale. Also, THO, has the home campaign reached that point yet, and if so, can you share a Knights-level view of the chaos?



Ooooooh the one led by Lyran from Melvaunt, can I add a YES PLEASE to that request, even if we can only get to know what happened to Lyran and what he/she was like.

Excellent request for Lore Hoondatha

Cheers

Damian

So saith Ed. I've never said he was sane, have I?
Gods, all this writing and he's running a constant fantasy version of Coronation Street in his head, too. .
shudder,
love to all,
THO
Candlekeep Forum 7 May 2005
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