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Thauranil
Master of Realmslore

India
1591 Posts

Posted - 26 Feb 2012 :  07:23:07  Show Profile Send Thauranil a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by Thauranil

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by Thauranil

I have to go with the Drow. They are an original and extremely iconic creation of the realms. When you think of the realms one of the most prominent images in anyone's mind will be Drizzt or a Drow matron mother.




That would be like saying humans are iconic of the Realms because of Elminster.

Drow are not original to the Realms, and I think that calling them iconic for the setting does a disservice to the setting -- the Realms is so much more than just one or two characters and their race. It doesn't matter if it's Liriel, or Elminster, or Erevis, or Bahb the Fighter -- characters are only one aspect of a setting.

And for me, the images of drow that come most readily to mind are from a Dragon cover and an old Greyhawk supplement/module (I don't actually own it, so I don't know which it is). Images of the Realms that come most readily to mind for me are the covers of Azure Bonds, FR5 The Savage Frontier, FR9 The Bloodstone Lands, Forgotten Realms Adventures, Spellfire, and the cover of the Shadowdale book in the 2E FRCS. Not one of those books has a drow on the cover.



These images are your personal preference and certainly they are iconic and i didn't mean to imply that D&D was just about drow.
Only that the way they have been portrayed and developed is original.
Also when i think of D&D the image i get is of Drizzt and Guenhwyvar ambushing a bunch of orcs in the Orc king.
Elminster has to compete with Gandalf and Dumbledore for recognition nowadays but there arent any other drow rangers around. Even my mom knows I am reading a forgotten realms novel if Drizzt is on the cover.
This cannot be said of any of the other characters in your example.
( dont get me wrong though i love old Erevis myself)




I don't see it as being all that original, since no one else has really portrayed and delevoped them. You could say the same thing about moon elves, since they've not been portrayed and developed outside of Realms novels.

I mentioned exactly one character, and I did not say he was the most recognizable thing in D&D -- I was just using him as an example to this idea that one character is somehow iconic of everything in the entire setting.

What I'm doing is disagreeing with your statement that thinking of the Realms means thinking of drow. Some of us will think of Danilo and Arilyn. Some will think of Azoun IV. Some will think of Elminster, some will think of Alias, some will think of Erevis. Some will think about particular book covers or artwork, of which a very large portion does not include drow. Some will envision Syluné killing a dragon in Shadowdale and being killed in the process, some will envision the Simbul laying waste to Thayans, some will think of the Tears of Selűne trailing across the night sky. And some will think of their own characters, like when my Waterdhavian swashbuckler thief pre-empted his partner's elaborate plan for dealing with guard dogs by simply perching on the gate and opening it, or the draconian-inspired Sembian sorcerer I've been playing with.

My point is that for you, drow may be what is iconic about the Realms -- but you cannot assume that for everyone.

And the topic isn't about what's iconic for the Realms, it's about the most iconic monster or race in D&D.



I did not mean to imply that everyone should consider drow to be the most iconic. Each to his own. You think of dragons, I prefer drow , many others prefer beholders. I dont think there is any right or wrong answer as its a matter of personal preference.
But Drizzt is still the best
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Dennis
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9933 Posts

Posted - 26 Feb 2012 :  17:50:14  Show Profile Send Dennis a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by Dennis


Early 60s. So the effects...well, really sucked. It was funny, though. Managed to watch the last 3/4 of it. I forgot the title. I was very young when I watched it on TV.

The monster was not exactly a beholder, but looked so much like one. Everything's nearly the same except that its eyes shoot fire instead of disintegration magic.


If it goes back that far, it may have been the inspiration for the D&D beholder. Because let's face it, most of us are not going to dream up a floating ball with laser eyes on our own!


Hmm. Perhaps, given that D&D's penanggalan (sp?) was obviously inspired by (or borrowed from) manananggal, a rather famous fetus-eating monster in my country.

Every beginning has an end.
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Artemas Entreri
Great Reader

USA
3085 Posts

Posted - 26 Feb 2012 :  18:24:39  Show Profile Send Artemas Entreri a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Dennis

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by Dennis


Early 60s. So the effects...well, really sucked. It was funny, though. Managed to watch the last 3/4 of it. I forgot the title. I was very young when I watched it on TV.

The monster was not exactly a beholder, but looked so much like one. Everything's nearly the same except that its eyes shoot fire instead of disintegration magic.



If it goes back that far, it may have been the inspiration for the D&D beholder. Because let's face it, most of us are not going to dream up a floating ball with laser eyes on our own!


Hmm. Perhaps, given that D&D's penanggalan (sp?) was obviously inspired by (or borrowed from) manananggal, a rather famous fetus-eating monster in my country.



The Philippines sound like a very dangerous place...

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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
31300 Posts

Posted - 26 Feb 2012 :  18:33:11  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


Early 60s. So the effects...well, really sucked. It was funny, though. Managed to watch the last 3/4 of it. I forgot the title. I was very young when I watched it on TV.

The monster was not exactly a beholder, but looked so much like one. Everything's nearly the same except that its eyes shoot fire instead of disintegration magic.


If it goes back that far, it may have been the inspiration for the D&D beholder. Because let's face it, most of us are not going to dream up a floating ball with laser eyes on our own!


Hmm. Perhaps, given that D&D's penanggalan (sp?) was obviously inspired by (or borrowed from) manananggal, a rather famous fetus-eating monster in my country.



Well, a lot of D&D critters are drawn -- however loosely -- from existing mythology/legends.

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Dennis
Great Reader

9933 Posts

Posted - 26 Feb 2012 :  18:39:24  Show Profile Send Dennis a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by entreri3478

quote:
Originally posted by Dennis

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by Dennis


Early 60s. So the effects...well, really sucked. It was funny, though. Managed to watch the last 3/4 of it. I forgot the title. I was very young when I watched it on TV.

The monster was not exactly a beholder, but looked so much like one. Everything's nearly the same except that its eyes shoot fire instead of disintegration magic.



If it goes back that far, it may have been the inspiration for the D&D beholder. Because let's face it, most of us are not going to dream up a floating ball with laser eyes on our own!


Hmm. Perhaps, given that D&D's penanggalan (sp?) was obviously inspired by (or borrowed from) manananggal, a rather famous fetus-eating monster in my country.



The Philippines sound like a very dangerous place...


Depends on the city. But monsters should be the least of your worries. Assassins dressed like civilian, on the other hand, you must be wary of. Specially if you do not behave yourself.

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

Australia
31691 Posts

Posted - 27 Feb 2012 :  00:18:58  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

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by Dennis


Early 60s. So the effects...well, really sucked. It was funny, though. Managed to watch the last 3/4 of it. I forgot the title. I was very young when I watched it on TV.

The monster was not exactly a beholder, but looked so much like one. Everything's nearly the same except that its eyes shoot fire instead of disintegration magic.


If it goes back that far, it may have been the inspiration for the D&D beholder. Because let's face it, most of us are not going to dream up a floating ball with laser eyes on our own!


Hmm. Perhaps, given that D&D's penanggalan (sp?) was obviously inspired by (or borrowed from) manananggal, a rather famous fetus-eating monster in my country.



Well, a lot of D&D critters are drawn -- however loosely -- from existing mythology/legends.

Or merger concepts from fictional aspects of a culture's literary foundation.

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Dennis
Great Reader

9933 Posts

Posted - 27 Feb 2012 :  00:59:55  Show Profile Send Dennis a Private Message  Reply with Quote

Everyone borrows ideas from everybody else. What's new to some may be old to others.

Whoever wrote the script of that movie I mentioned must not have dreamed of it entirely by himself. He must have had some inspiration. Perhaps some stories by Lovecraft. Or our very own folklore.

Every beginning has an end.
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MrsDrasek
Seeker

26 Posts

Posted - 14 Jun 2012 :  16:28:43  Show Profile  Visit MrsDrasek's Homepage Send MrsDrasek a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Iconic? I would pick Mephistopheles (or any such devil equivalent)as this type has been around gaming as long as I can remember. He has always been a prominent feature in the realms here and there over the years.

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Ayrik
Great Reader

Canada
6623 Posts

Posted - 14 Jun 2012 :  17:38:44  Show Profile Send Ayrik a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I don't recall old Meph being much mentioned in Realmslore before the Twilight War books, although yeah, he (along with the other iconic arch-fiends) has technically been around since even before D&D's inception.

Tiamat, as a five-headed chromatic dragon, seems to be entirely invented by Gygax. Apparently based on a Tiamat from ancient Babylon mythology who was described only vaguely as some kind of chaos serpent.

[/Ayrik]
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Jeremy Grenemyer
Great Reader

USA
2717 Posts

Posted - 14 Jun 2012 :  17:48:01  Show Profile Send Jeremy Grenemyer a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I voted Other, for Illithids. Brain-sucking beasties for the win!

Look for me and my content at EN World (user name: sanishiver).
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Snow
Learned Scribe

USA
125 Posts

Posted - 14 Jun 2012 :  18:44:21  Show Profile Send Snow a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I would venture to say that if we defined iconic as "the D&D monster that we've encountered the most in combat over the years" .... it would be Orcs. We all have fought Orcs. They are immensely prolific in combat from CR 1 to 4 - and still encountered frequently-enough after that if using templates or class level boosts (we're talking 3.5 and PF here).

If we define iconic in the sense of marketing symbolism, dragons are the correct answer.

In my Mind's Eye though, it's Beholders. Hence, my vote. :-)
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MrsDrasek
Seeker

26 Posts

Posted - 15 Jun 2012 :  21:42:05  Show Profile  Visit MrsDrasek's Homepage Send MrsDrasek a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Ayrik

I don't recall old Meph being much mentioned in Realmslore before the Twilight War books, although yeah, he (along with the other iconic arch-fiends) has technically been around since even before D&D's inception.


I used Mephistopheles because he was my favorite out of the "Devil" types, (Because of the Twilight Wars) but meant devils in general. Not sure if your meaning of realms-lore is just talking about FR novels in general?
For me he was used in gaming back in the 1979-1980 time frame and I remember him being in the first edition monster manual, then the second Edition, Book of Vile Darkness, and Fiendish Codex II He was the one who stood out for me the most over the years as far as archfiends and the like. If were just talking found in authors work, then I can't be sure I haven't read everything yet.

Orcs was a good one, I forgot about them entirely.

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Dalor Darden
Great Reader

USA
3593 Posts

Posted - 15 Jun 2012 :  22:05:00  Show Profile Send Dalor Darden a Private Message  Reply with Quote
How in the hells could the Beholder be winning this????

It is called Dungeons and DRAGONS...

Dragon is of course my pick.

AD&D for me!
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MrsDrasek
Seeker

26 Posts

Posted - 15 Jun 2012 :  22:20:36  Show Profile  Visit MrsDrasek's Homepage Send MrsDrasek a Private Message  Reply with Quote
As stupid as this may make me sound, Dragon didn't enter my mind and your right Dalor the Dragon probably should be the most iconic.
When I first read the poll "the most iconic monster" I just didn't think of it. My mode of thinking was monster based (as I guess I do not think of all dragons as monsters or associate those as all evil lol)

So I chose devils, simply because for me, they have appeared the most throughout history as the monster figure that I can remember earliest in all types of forms.
Dragon... who'd a thunk it?

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Gray Richardson
Master of Realmslore

USA
1291 Posts

Posted - 16 Jun 2012 :  01:59:19  Show Profile  Visit Gray Richardson's Homepage Send Gray Richardson a Private Message  Reply with Quote
My first inclination was to vote "Dragon" (after all, it's in the name, right?) but after a moment's consideration I went with "Beholder."

The beholder is the most iconic creature of the D&D IP. The beholder has been with the game since the beginning. A beholder was pictured on the cover of the very first D&D supplement book "Greyhawk", a book I remember quite fondly. (http://savevsdragon.blogspot.com/2012/03/why-supplement-i-may-be-most-d-of-all-d.html)

Although my 2nd most favorite D&D critter(after the beholder) is the rust-monster, who was not even mentioned in the poll. Poor little guy. He just gets no respect!
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Tamsar
Learned Scribe

United Kingdom
137 Posts

Posted - 19 Jun 2012 :  23:48:39  Show Profile Send Tamsar a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Solars just for their sheer rarity, majesty, and power. I don't think I have ever seen solar in a forgotten realms Novel...



Al Dimeneira was a Solar in The Crystal Shard, at the very beginning he throws the shard across the planes to land in Icewind Dale.

One of the first monster I think of is a carrion crawler, up there with the trusty old Rust monster at least.

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Kiaransalyn
Senior Scribe

United Kingdom
762 Posts

Posted - 25 Jun 2012 :  22:06:22  Show Profile Send Kiaransalyn a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Has to be dragon really, since it is in the name.

Actually, that said 'Dungeons and Beholders' has a certain, slightly voyeuristic S&M charm.

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BEAST
Master of Realmslore

USA
1714 Posts

Posted - 26 Jun 2012 :  02:57:17  Show Profile  Visit BEAST's Homepage Send BEAST a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Markustay

There is an old piece of art that shows a party opening a chest, with a Dragon rearing up behind them, unseen.

THAT is iconic D&D.

A Dungeon, and a Dragon.

Aye.

Methinks a lot of people are misunderstanding what the word "iconic" means.

It does not mean "original", "distinctive", "unique", "most common or frequently encountered", "popular", or "my personal preference".

It means "related to the image of", or "representative of".

What is iconic of "D&D"™ is the image that comes to mind when you read or hear of that abbreviation.

When I read "Dungeons", I don't think skyscraper. I think of a dark, dank, basement to a castle or fortress. I think of skeletons, and bugs, and things that go bump in the night.

And when I read "Dragons", I don't think beholder or drow or rust monster. I think of giant, scaly, yuck-stuff-breathing reptiles. I think of dragons. Um . . . duh?!

(I find the thought process whereby someone reads or hears "D&D" or "Dungeons & Dragons" and immediately thinks of anything other than dragons quite odd. Clearly, people's personal histories and biases are kicking in, here, big time, in order to detour their minds down less-than-logical alternate paths. Rorsach ink blots come to mind. I am reminded of that joke, "If you hear hooves, don't think 'unicorns'." If it walks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, it probably ain't a kitty-cat. If CSIs roll up on a scene, and see a dead body in the middle of the street, with a couple of holes in its head, and spent bullet casings over by the curb, the logical working assumption would not be alien abduction and anal probes.)

Color me simple. Call me unimaginative and pedestrian.

But specifically, I think of a great red dragon, Larry Elmore-style:

<1>

<2>

<3>

<4>

<5>

<6>

Now, I fully realize that that last image could just as easily be a pic of Smaug enroute to flame another town. It doesn't necessarily scream "D&D". So a red dragon certainly is not distinctive, or original.

But it is absolutely the image, or icon, that comes to my mind when I encounter "D&D".




Perhaps I am approaching this from the wrong direction. I am thinking of the monster that comes to mind when I hear "D&D". But maybe I should be thinking of which monster, when seen or imagined, immediately makes me think of "D&D".

When I see any of those Elmore reds, I think "D&D".

When I see a drow, I first think "RAS"--not "D&D".

When I see a beholder or rust monster, I think "obscure monster from the worlds of D&D". Neither creature is representative, or iconic, of the worlds or the system to me.

It's fascinating to me how subjective and arbitrary this all is.

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Dalor Darden
Great Reader

USA
3593 Posts

Posted - 26 Jun 2012 :  03:52:07  Show Profile Send Dalor Darden a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by BEAST



<1>

<2>

<3>

<4>

<5>

<6>





Thanks for the trip down Elmore Lane Beast!

I think the lass that just killed the babies is about to have a very bad day!

AD&D for me!
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Artemas Entreri
Great Reader

USA
3085 Posts

Posted - 26 Jun 2012 :  14:05:18  Show Profile Send Artemas Entreri a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by BEAST

quote:
Originally posted by Markustay

There is an old piece of art that shows a party opening a chest, with a Dragon rearing up behind them, unseen.

THAT is iconic D&D.

A Dungeon, and a Dragon.

Aye.

Methinks a lot of people are misunderstanding what the word "iconic" means.

It does not mean "original", "distinctive", "unique", "most common or frequently encountered", "popular", or "my personal preference".

It means "related to the image of", or "representative of".

What is iconic of "D&D"™ is the image that comes to mind when you read or hear of that abbreviation.

When I read "Dungeons", I don't think skyscraper. I think of a dark, dank, basement to a castle or fortress. I think of skeletons, and bugs, and things that go bump in the night.

And when I read "Dragons", I don't think beholder or drow or rust monster. I think of giant, scaly, yuck-stuff-breathing reptiles. I think of dragons. Um . . . duh?!

(I find the thought process whereby someone reads or hears "D&D" or "Dungeons & Dragons" and immediately thinks of anything other than dragons quite odd. Clearly, people's personal histories and biases are kicking in, here, big time, in order to detour their minds down less-than-logical alternate paths. Rorsach ink blots come to mind. I am reminded of that joke, "If you hear hooves, don't think 'unicorns'." If it walks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, it probably ain't a kitty-cat. If CSIs roll up on a scene, and see a dead body in the middle of the street, with a couple of holes in its head, and spent bullet casings over by the curb, the logical working assumption would not be alien abduction and anal probes.)

Color me simple. Call me unimaginative and pedestrian.

But specifically, I think of a great red dragon, Larry Elmore-style:

<1>

<2>

<3>

<4>

<5>

<6>

Now, I fully realize that that last image could just as easily be a pic of Smaug enroute to flame another town. It doesn't necessarily scream "D&D". So a red dragon certainly is not distinctive, or original.

But it is absolutely the image, or icon, that comes to my mind when I encounter "D&D".




Perhaps I am approaching this from the wrong direction. I am thinking of the monster that comes to mind when I hear "D&D". But maybe I should be thinking of which monster, when seen or imagined, immediately makes me think of "D&D".

When I see any of those Elmore reds, I think "D&D".

When I see a drow, I first think "RAS"--not "D&D".

When I see a beholder or rust monster, I think "obscure monster from the worlds of D&D". Neither creature is representative, or iconic, of the worlds or the system to me.

It's fascinating to me how subjective and arbitrary this all is.



Dungeons and Dragons is the name of a game and what people perceive as an iconic monster for that game depends on how they play it and what they encounter. This shouldn't be surprising but MOST PC's don't run around all day slaying dragons.

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BEAST
Master of Realmslore

USA
1714 Posts

Posted - 26 Jun 2012 :  22:36:17  Show Profile  Visit BEAST's Homepage Send BEAST a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by entreri3478

Dungeons and Dragons is the name of a game and what people perceive as an iconic monster for that game depends on how they play it and what they encounter. This shouldn't be surprising[...].

You wrote "what people perceive" and "what they encounter". That right there goes to show that you, and others, are approaching this from an insular, personal, narrow perspective. You're taking your personal game sessions and casting them as representative or iconic for the entire game system as a whole. That's entirely subjective and arbitrary.

Now, sure, you can certainly take the D&D rules and adapt them for your local situation. Of course, you can--it's often recommended and encouraged!

But you should still recognize that that's what you're doing. You're not playing it literally from the rulebooks, but rather, the way you prefer to. So whatever phenomena you encounter in your games can hardly be said to be iconic or representative of "the" game, but rather, are only iconic or representative of "your" game sessions/style/etc.

I'm not hatin'. I'm not discriminatin'. And I'm not blamin'.

I'm just 'splainin' and elaboratin'.

I try not to think that way (projecting my narrow personal preferences as the mega-view of the entire system), or to approach it that way, or indulge or dignify that way of thinking, whenever I catch myself doing it. I question my hunches and first impressions, and ask myself whether they make sense.

It surprises me that so many here haven't done that, themselves. They've read "D&D" and thought "D&B". No matter what you say, if you stop and think about it, that is surprising.

I don't play the game. So I don't have past gaming session encounters to lead me to form that kind of a bias.

And I don't even know if I have a personal favorite monster. I like a whole lot of them.

And while I love RAS's books, and particularly his dwarf characters, I don't for a second think that his fiction is iconic or representative of all of D&D. His stories only represent those parts of D&D that he wishes to set to narrative, and in the particularly modified manner that he likes to use. So I don't think that the D&D monsters which I, personally, encounter most often (the ones featured in his stories), are iconic or representative of all D&D, either.

I'm trying to get at something deeper than any of that.

quote:
[...] MOST PC's don't run around all day slaying dragons.

Well, I would hope that most D&D PCs don't go around slaying anything "all day". There ought to be more to your games than just whacking stuff.

For example, if your DM is doing his/her job right, then you should be taking lots of rest breaks during your adventures for meals, drinks, and tending to wounds/ailments. So because you should be dealing with those sorts of things every day, does that somehow mean that bread, water, bandages, and bedrolls ought somehow to be seen as iconic of D&D?

Here, you seem to use the infrequency of battling reds as a rationale for not considering them as iconic of D&D. Well, have you considered that the 1E Monster Manual described red dragons and illithids as "rare", while describing beholders as "very rare"? Using your rationale, then wouldn't the infrequency of battling beholders bar them to an even greater degree from being rightfully deemed the iconic monster of D&D? So why did you choose beholders as the iconic monster of the game, then?

I notice that you mentioned illithids earlier in this scroll, before you chose beholders. Now, again, if the rarity of red dragons precludes them from being properly considered iconic of the game, then what have you to say about the fact that the 1E MM also described mindflayers as "rare": the exact same frequency as red dragons? Shouldn't that also bar illithids from being considered iconic, using your logic?

(I don't know how to determine the frequency or rarity of monsters in any of the other editions.)

Your choice doesn't seem to make sense, given your avowed logic. If rarity bars dragons, then it should likewise bar illithids, and it should certainly bar beholders most of all.

I say again: I don't think that the rarity or frequency of a monster should lead it to being deemed iconic of the game.
quote:
Originally posted by BEAST

Methinks a lot of people are misunderstanding what the word "iconic" means.

It does not mean "original", "distinctive", "unique", "most common or frequently encountered", "popular", or "my personal preference".

It doesn't mean common. So just because red dragons aren't common in D&D, doesn't mean that they shouldn't be considered iconic or representative.

Nor does it mean unique. So just because red dragons aren't unique as parts of D&D versus the rest of all fantasy settings/systems, doesn't mean that they shouldn't be considered iconic or representative, either.

Common or unique really have little to do with it.

That brings up another point. People in this scroll seem to use wildly differing standards or frames of reference for determining the iconic monster. Some people go with unique, while others go with common. Do you realize that those are completely contradictory and diametrically opposed definitions for the very same word ("iconic")? And you say that this shouldn't be surprising?!

I'll also point out that earlier in this scroll you seemed to dismiss dragons from consideration as iconic because you didn't think they were "special" or rare enough, but rather, are seen in almost all fantasy settings. But despite that alleged ubiquitousness, here, you dismiss them from being considered iconic because "MOST PC's" nevertheless don't encounter them frequently. You say they're not iconic because they're seen frequently in most gaming systems, but then you turn around and say that it shouldn't be surprising that a majority/pleurality of responders don't consider them iconic here because they don't see dragons frequently. Which is it? You don't seem to be able to make up your mind. Either way, you, yourself, seem to be using two different, contradictory standards for determining iconicity, within the very same scroll!

Are you at least surprised by that?

Vote <"Big Red"> for President! Er, uh, Senator. Ah, I mean . . . Iconic Monster.

"'You don't know my history,' he said dryly."
--Drizzt Do'Urden (The Pirate King, Part 1: Chapter 2)

<"Comprehensive Chronology of R.A. Salvatore Forgotten Realms Works">

Edited by - BEAST on 26 Jun 2012 22:41:30
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Artemas Entreri
Great Reader

USA
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Posted - 27 Jun 2012 :  01:13:53  Show Profile Send Artemas Entreri a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by BEAST

quote:
Originally posted by entreri3478

Dungeons and Dragons is the name of a game and what people perceive as an iconic monster for that game depends on how they play it and what they encounter. This shouldn't be surprising[...].

You wrote "what people perceive" and "what they encounter". That right there goes to show that you, and others, are approaching this from an insular, personal, narrow perspective. You're taking your personal game sessions and casting them as representative or iconic for the entire game system as a whole. That's entirely subjective and arbitrary.

Now, sure, you can certainly take the D&D rules and adapt them for your local situation. Of course, you can--it's often recommended and encouraged!

But you should still recognize that that's what you're doing. You're not playing it literally from the rulebooks, but rather, the way you prefer to. So whatever phenomena you encounter in your games can hardly be said to be iconic or representative of "the" game, but rather, are only iconic or representative of "your" game sessions/style/etc.





We are talking about a game where the entire experience occurs in each individual's imagination. How is a personal opinion poll about it going to be anything BUT subjective??

Some people have a way with words, and other people...oh, uh, not have way. -Steve Martin

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LordXenophon
Learned Scribe

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Posted - 28 Jun 2012 :  23:48:35  Show Profile  Send LordXenophon an AOL message Send LordXenophon a Private Message  Reply with Quote
If you want to know which monster is the most iconic of the game, ask a different question. When I mention Dungeons and Dragons, what's the first monster most people will think of? Whatever the answer, that will be the game's most iconic monster.

I can only think of two canditates. Either they think of Easley's Big Red Dragon (that specific dragon, not Red Dragons in general), or they think of Beholders. Almost nobody is going to say "pennangalan."

Disintegration is in the eye of the Beholder.
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BEAST
Master of Realmslore

USA
1714 Posts

Posted - 29 Jun 2012 :  05:17:42  Show Profile  Visit BEAST's Homepage Send BEAST a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by entreri3478

We are talking about a game where the entire experience occurs in each individual's imagination. How is a personal opinion poll about it going to be anything BUT subjective??

Well, for starters, the poll might be about which monster/race best represents the game, as a whole. That would call on us to discuss aspects of the game as a whole, and then to describe how a given monster expounded upon those aspects.

It would certainly be less subjective than having us talk up our personal favorite monsters, or somehow taking the collection of monsters that we have encountered in our selective, narrowly-defined personal sessions and proclaiming those to somehow be representative of the game as a whole.



The game was named partially after dragons because dragons are an archetypal monster from literature and pop culture. "To slay the dragon" is a classic feat of adventure heroes, kinda like "facing one's demons". Beholders and such are merely variations upon that timeless theme.

Drizzt wrote in one of his Diary entries how a dragon is the perfect embodiment of evil, and a classic adversary. If Drizzt wrote it, then it must be true!

"'You don't know my history,' he said dryly."
--Drizzt Do'Urden (The Pirate King, Part 1: Chapter 2)

<"Comprehensive Chronology of R.A. Salvatore Forgotten Realms Works">

Edited by - BEAST on 29 Jun 2012 05:40:20
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LordXenophon
Learned Scribe

USA
121 Posts

Posted - 30 Jun 2012 :  03:10:20  Show Profile  Send LordXenophon an AOL message Send LordXenophon a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by entreri3478

quote:
Originally posted by rhune

Beholder here as well. Did Easley do the cover of the 2nd Edition Monster's Manual?



Yes i am pretty sure he did the cover for the large hardback Monstrous Manual.



Confirmed (I keep a copy on my desk). The cover is painted by Jeff Easley and the biggest monster, right in the middle of the cover, is a Red Dragon. The Beholder is in front, though. Also in the painting are a Minotaur, a Lich and a Thri-Kreen.

Disintegration is in the eye of the Beholder.
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