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Icelander
Master of Realmslore

1229 Posts

Posted - 06 Jan 2017 :  08:54:43  Show Profile  Visit Icelander's Homepage Send Icelander a Private Message  Reply with Quote  Delete Topic
I recall Amn being particularly unwilling to allow ships from anywhere else to sail to Maztica and profit from Amnian discoveries. I'm not sure whether the same applies to the areas claimed on behalf of Baldur's Gate.

Canonically, Durpari* ships sail all the way to Maztica and carry home riches in the form of chocolate and other exotic goods, but I don't know where in Maztica these vessels touch.

If I wanted a shipowner based in Waterdeep who was involved in shipping goods to Maztica in 1368 DR, where would his ships anchor in the New World?

And could he have gotten a licence to trade in Baldur's Gate and/or from Durpari traders or would his actions be viewed as unfriendly by everyone else who sailed to Maztica?

Obviously, I understand that I can adjust to taste in my own campaign. I'm looking for the canonical situation in order to have a baseline for any changes I may decide to make.

*Which may or may not refer to ships from Estagund and Var the Golden as well as Durpar.

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dazzlerdal
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United Kingdom
3245 Posts

Posted - 06 Jan 2017 :  11:41:22  Show Profile Send dazzlerdal a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I dont think the sailing to is a problem. For enough coin people will do just about anything, including sail halfway round the world.

There is no way Amn can control where people leave from unless they pay pirates to attack every ship that doesnt leave from Amn. And its a big ocean so thats a lot of pirates.

The problem i see is where to dock when you reach maztica. New amn is the major option with only two rivals that are out of the main population areas.

So if you want to travel and trade with the new world in 1368 then your coin will end up enriching Amn (which is what they want).

I cant see any other restrictions in place until the 1380s with that plague. Money is money and Amnians like money.

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Icelander
Master of Realmslore

1229 Posts

Posted - 06 Jan 2017 :  11:54:29  Show Profile  Visit Icelander's Homepage Send Icelander a Private Message  Reply with Quote
By analogy from the real world, New Amn has no requirement to accept ships from other nations than Amn and may in fact attack such ships on sight for violating the exclusive right of Amn to control the New World.

Spain did it for a very long time in our world, after all.

Of course, this will breed piracy and tend to make outlaw sailors more respectable in the eyes of the average person than otherwise, but that is hardly negative from a roleplaying perspective.

I can't recall any canon information on the reception that foreign ships receive in New Amn, however.

Note that simply requiring all ships to dock in New Amn doesn't ensure that the profits exclusively enrich Amn. By allowing other nations to sail there, Amn is giving up a potential monopoly which would be much more profitable, at least in the short term.

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Edited by - Icelander on 06 Jan 2017 11:56:00
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dazzlerdal
Great Reader

United Kingdom
3245 Posts

Posted - 06 Jan 2017 :  11:57:01  Show Profile Send dazzlerdal a Private Message  Reply with Quote
The events in GHoTR give some insight as to what happens in extreme circumstances but i dont recall anything off the top of my head.

If i remember i will have a look at my maztica stuff over the weekend and see what i can find

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dazzlerdal
Great Reader

United Kingdom
3245 Posts

Posted - 07 Jan 2017 :  20:23:43  Show Profile Send dazzlerdal a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Got a few quotes. Make of them what you will. Unfortunately I never bothered to note sources.

quote:
The latest fees for the trading community involve the new world of Maztica, whose very mention sets danters awhirl in the eyes of Amnians within earshot. These taxes are only incurred by those who petition the Council for inclusion in the expensive but lucrative trade.
250 danters for a working berth on a westbound ship; 400 danters for a working berth on an eastbound ship from Maztica to Amn (or confiscation of an equal value in property, as determined by the ship’s captain). If an additional 50% is paid, the berth is compensatory and no work is required while on board ship.
2,000 roldons per ship heading west toward Maztica, plus 10% of the net worth of any trade goods on board.
4,000 roldons per ship returning from Maztica. Half the return fees must be paid up front with a loan contract left for the balance, payable to the Six.
5,000 roldons for an official Centaur Charter (one round-trip voyage to Maztica) from the Council, for a predetermined number of ships.
100,000 roldons for an official Pearl Charter (unlimited voyages to and from Maztica) from the Council, for an undetermined but large number of ships.
If a merchant or ship captain does not pay these fees, the expedition does not receive the Council’s official charters for safe passage to Maztica. If it tries to drop anchor at Helmsport, a ship that does not have a Council charter is impounded with all crew and cargo (but not passengers) by the Grand Assessor and the Governor-General. This makes for a lucrative market for forgers, but the Grand Assessor has never been fooled. The few captains caught with forged charters are now plantation workers in Qoral.



quote:
By the end of the Year of Maidens (1361 DR), word trickled into the ports of Tethyr and Calimshan that a new land had been discovered to the far west, beyond the Nelanther and even Evermeet. The Syl-Pasha Pesarkhal did not immediately leap to action based on this news. The promise of fortunes to be made in rich exotic goods saw a number of pashas leap into ill considered shipbuilding and westward bound fleets, but these ships never returned or arrived badly damaged back in Memnon to tell of fierce Amnian resistance to any other nation plying the waters westward to Maztica. The syl-pasha watched and learned. A few years later, sufficient bribes and some Calishite concessions in trade agreements between Calimshan and Amn that governed the spice trade saw some loose alliances form between the Council of Six in Amn and the syl-pasha's court in Calimport for the purpose of exploiting the riches of the Maztican lands.



quote:
By the end of the Year of Maidens (1361 DR), word trickled into the ports of Tethyr that a new land had been discovered to the far west, beyond the Nelanther and Evermeet. The promise of this land, rich in exotic goods, saw many of the power-mongers of Zazesspur and Myratma frantically build ships to sail to the west in a dash for the riches. Though many set sail early the next year, no ship that set sail from Tethyr ever made it to the shores of New Amn; they either sailed too far north and were sunk by the elven fleet of Evermeet, or they crossed into Amnian-controlled shipping waters and were attacked and sunk to prevent any competing traders or settlers from reaching the New World. This brought down a few of the rising powers of Tethyr, since the ventures took all their money for naught. In the last few months of the Year of the Gauntlet (1369 DR), however, some small successes were made by Tethyrian merchants in reaching Maztica and initiating trade with New Waterdeep and Helmsport.




Looks like Amn charges a pretty penny to those wishing to land in New Amn. Those without a charter are seized and their ship and goods confiscated. Any without a charter found sailing in the shipping lanes to and from Maztica are also attacked if they do not possess a charter.

New Waterdeep was only found in 1365. Can't remember about Fort Flame. So if you are sailing to Maztica your options are limited since New Amn is the most direct and most established and well known (and therefore safest) route to Maztica but only if you pay the council of Amn a small fortune).

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Bladewind
Master of Realmslore

Netherlands
1136 Posts

Posted - 08 Jan 2017 :  14:02:39  Show Profile Send Bladewind a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Aha. Nice to know where some of those impoverished nobles of Faerun in my campaigns lost their fortunes to: hastily build merchant fleets and their crew destroyed on the way to the New World by elves, pirates, New-Amnian fleet and oceanic storms.

My campaign sketches

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sleyvas
Great Reader

USA
5236 Posts

Posted - 09 Jan 2017 :  00:59:13  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
There was also New Waterdeep and they established a small colony called Trythosford. New Waterdeep eventually got razed, but Trythosford survived. It was never big though.

On the idea of Fort Flame, it was heavily harassed by the local native population. They are mercenaries first and foremost, not merchants, so I came up with an idea that would suit the situation. One of the things I've been working with is the idea that Fort Flame was contacted by Samas Kul, head of Thay's Guild of Foreign Trade, to setup a remote Thayan Enclave. I loved the idea that "Fort Flame" is joined by those "Fire Loving Red Wizards". Then there was the spellplague, and they went to Abeir... and now they're back....

In fact, I plan on releasing something for the DMs Guild, but this is part of the introduction that I wrote up. If anyone is interested in helping write any of this up, or just do some development of their own but using this as a base, I'm willing to share. I've tried to link my stuff with the lore put forth by those doing the Maztica Live! piece, but haven't directly contacted them. I've also got a big difference in view on what happened with the gods during the spellplague (I feel like there were some of the missing gods over in Abeir... just like some primordials came over to Toril... whereas the stuff they put forth doesn't give any real history for the last hundred years and just says "the gods were silent"...... which my viewpoint is that if that were the case after 5 generations worship wouldn't be fervent anymore).


In the years immediately leading up to start of the Thayan Civil War in 1375 DR, the Guild of Foreign Trade opened up several new red wizard enclaves in more far flung markets than would normally be expected. In particular, one enclave would bring about a major change in the mindset of the young red wizards who had grown up watching their influence extend for the past thirty years slowly Westward. For the most part, most larger enclaves were established in well settled and relatively safe areas of Faerun. The focus around these enclaves had been to gain political influence, better trade relations, and to act as a subtle information gathering network of the world at large. Of course, there were also black market deals, thievery, smuggling, work as fences, illicit slave trading of captured “unwanted” humanoids, and the occasional bit of assassination work. However, they were still working within the entrenched avenues of power of the local government, military, and other organizations who did not want to see the red wizards gain a firm foothold.

That changed one day when a priest of Savras in the enclave of Cimbar advised Samas that he should check on his far flung enclaves in the west for new opportunities. Not one to ignore the advice of the god of divinations, Samas Kul found himself visiting the enclave of Calimport, where talk of the growth of Lord Drakosa of Memnon's plantations in the Maztican colony of New Amn promised to increase the power of the Pasha of Calimport. A few days later found him discussing trade deals over Maztican coffee with the khazark of the enclave of Athkatla, but while lucrative, nothing seemed poised to be a new opportunity. A few days later, Samas was taking dinner with the Khazark of the Baldur's Gate Enclave and his fellow red wizards, a fabulous spectacle of roast axebeak and a rich, red sweetwine. The topic had turned to the activities of the local populace, in particular that of the infamous Flaming Fist mercenary company. Samas made a remark that it was apt that the red wizards should rub shoulders with a group with the “Flaming Fist”, and one of the lesser red wizards jokingly made another remark that “perhaps we should open an enclave way off in Fort Flame then”. Thinking back on the activities of the past few days, Samas decided he had just been presented the prophecied new opportunity.

The very next day, Samas Kul approached Duke Eltan, leader of the Flaming Fist, to discuss this very idea, for he saw in this a rare opportunity not often seen in Faerun. Rather than seeking gold or political power from others who held it in their grasp, through this enclave he could in fact grow Thayan influence in the form of new lands in which they could expand. Future historians would laud Samas Kul's foresight and intelligence, but in truth it had been the recommendation of a simple priest of Savras which had guided him down this path. Samas had no idea of the odd twists of fate that would soon fall upon him and his fellow countrymen, as internal civil war turned the countryside of Thay bloody.

The people's reaction to this civil war shook the foundations of control that held many red wizards in their stations. While the Zulkirs primarily retreated to the cities of the Wizard's Reach and the isle of Alaor, many established red wizards went seeking freedom and good fortune amongst the trade enclaves in “the Vast” and Moonsea regions in the near east. Others turned to the enclaves of the older empires of Chessenta and Unther, seeking work as mercenaries in the ongoing war against Mulhorandi encroachment while their own leaders decided the next moves that would need to be made against Tam and his undead minions.

For many younger red wizards however, they saw a beacon of hope in the fledgling “Balduran Bay” enclave, as the new trade enclave near Fort Flame in Anchorome became known. Later chroniclers would say that Kul himself had planned for and encouraged just such an increase, but in truth the new Zulkir of Transmutation was currently overwhelmed with his new responsibilities and did not notice the immense growth that his far flung colony had shown until several years had passed. Others would state that it was Lauzoril, Zulkir of Enchantment, or Mythrell'aa, Zulkir of Illusion, which was the driving force behind building the portal network that would ultimately link several established Faerunian trade enclaves with their new partners in the True World. There would be even other historians who would state that the actions of the Zulkirate were secondary to the simple drive to conquer and build of the daring red wizards who went on the establish the Esh Alakar, Lopango, Western Pridelands, New Eltabbar, Luneira, Pelveran, and other enclaves. There can be no doubt that all of these things were factors, but there it can also be said that no factor changed life for these red wizards more than the coming of the Spellplague. For during the raging blue fires, there was a freak accident that all are in agreement had something to do with their transfer to Abeir. How that freak accident occurred exactly is open to much speculation and will lead to multiple conjectures, sometimes even from the same person, though most think it had something to do with the active portal connection linking multiple enclaves.

For most of Maztica, Anchorome, and Katashaka, the spellplague was a strange message from the gods, but for the red wizards who still had contact with some of the transferred enclaves in Faerun, they knew they had somehow been transferred to a new world. This ability to communicate the many changes in the world quickly, as well as the later dangers that presented themselves from this new world, served to unite these enclaves. The fact that the decade long, bloody civil war which had so divided them was now left behind in an entirely different world, no longer serving any point, gave them a new focus on improving their lot in this new world. It became a time of discovery, hope, and conquest for these red wizards, and they took advantage of as much of it as they could. Their enclaves became new Tharchs, and new Tharchions were elected. Though they kept the idea of a magocracy, for after all it is important that the most intelligent lead, they also formed a new type of governance which would not instill so much power in individual wizards.

Now, suddenly these red wizards find themselves five generations later, and once again they are transferred to a new world. For most, except for the most powerful archmages, it is a world which they only knew of in old stories told to them by their grandfathers, who had learned those same stories from their own grandfathers. Still, they've learned from the past that they achieve more when they find common goals. They are far from perfect, and individuals still quest to build up their own power structure, but internal strife has been lessened considerably. This of course may be something that the rest of the world should learn to fear.

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas
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Markustay
Realms Explorer extraordinaire

USA
13386 Posts

Posted - 09 Jan 2017 :  02:41:22  Show Profile Send Markustay a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Have you ever read any of the Dune series?

In some of the later books, the timeline GREATLY advances (1500 years?), and they had gone through this period known as 'The Scattering', wherein which many people 'flee' the galactic (core) empire and spread outward in the universe... taking their factions with them. When they return, the factions have become greatly altered, and are now at odds with the 'orthodox' methodology of the established factions. We also have something similar go on in the Wheel of Time series, when the Seanchan return to the main continent after many centuries.

So basically, what I am thinking is - turn it on its head. Have the returning wizards be much more neutral (the full gamut of alignments, really), and maybe have them call themselves 'The Crimson magi', or some-such, and instead of 'bowing knee' to Szass Tam and Thay again, they've decided they've found a better way, and maybe Thay should listen to THEM. Thats what happened in those two series, and it makes for a very interesting juxtaposition - who should the characters be backing, if any? Is one group really any better than the other?

To really make it work, you have to make at least one MAJOR philosophical difference in their approaches - maybe have the 'returnies' be rabidly anti-necromancy/undead (maybe they were influenced by the Eminence of Araunt in some way). So when they first return they'd be at odds with the Red Wizards, and perhaps people see them as 'saviors' from Thayan depredations... but then they start to see another side of them thats not so nice, and its like Thay all over again, but different. Maybe they begin to raid tombs and burn mummies in the Old Empires, and start raiding elven ruins just to destroy Baelnorn...stuff like that. In other words, they're just another flavor of 'extreme'.

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


Edited by - Markustay on 09 Jan 2017 02:42:52
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TBeholder
Master of Realmslore

1377 Posts

Posted - 10 Jan 2017 :  03:04:32  Show Profile Send TBeholder a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Icelander

I recall Amn being particularly unwilling to allow ships from anywhere else to sail to Maztica and profit from Amnian discoveries. I'm not sure whether the same applies to the areas claimed on behalf of Baldur's Gate.

Canonically, Durpari* ships sail all the way to Maztica and carry home riches in the form of chocolate and other exotic goods, but I don't know where in Maztica these vessels touch.

If I wanted a shipowner based in Waterdeep who was involved in shipping goods to Maztica in 1368 DR, where would his ships anchor in the New World?

1368 DR, probably New Waterdeep, but doesn't matter anymore (see below).
The Amnian merchants (those who don't see the money in question) won't like it, but they won't like it no matter where the rivals go.

Now, if they want to try and cut out the middle man - start trading with natives directly? That's interesting, but requires a reconnaissance mission. Which would be a mini-campaign in itself, by amount of effort and luck it requires.
quote:
And could he have gotten a licence to trade in Baldur's Gate and/or from Durpari traders or would his actions be viewed as unfriendly by everyone else who sailed to Maztica?

Trade rivalry is trade rivalry. They won't sail this far if they didn't expect to make a killing. But there are agreements along the shore, so near the Sword coast legitimate merchants will not directly attack one another, no matter how their hands itch... unless they're really sure it will remain quiet. Now, tipping or hiring a bunch of pirates...

quote:
Originally posted by dazzlerdal

Got a few quotes. Make of them what you will. Unfortunately I never bothered to note sources.
quote:
The latest fees for the trading community involve the new world of Maztica


Lands of Intrigue (Book 2: Amn, p.15)

quote:
quote:
By the end of the Year of Maidens (1361 DR), word trickled into the ports of Tethyr and Calimshan that a new land had been discovered to the far west, beyond the Nelanther and even Evermeet. The Syl-Pasha Pesarkhal did not immediately leap to action based on this news.


Since it focuses on the Eastern side, probably not Maztica material, but neither Calimport nor Lands of Intrigue, so most likely Empires of the Shining Sea.

quote:
quote:
By the end of the Year of Maidens (1361 DR), word trickled into the ports of Tethyr that a new land had been discovered to the far west


Lands of Intrigue (Book 1: Tethyr, p.39)

quote:
Those without a charter are seized and their ship and goods confiscated. Any without a charter found sailing in the shipping lanes to and from Maztica are also attacked if they do not possess a charter.

Now that's a grey area.
quote:
New Waterdeep was only found in 1365. Can't remember about Fort Flame. So if you are sailing to Maztica your options are limited since New Amn is the most direct and most established and well known (and therefore safest) route to Maztica but only if you pay the council of Amn a small fortune).


Also, the more you turn to South, the farther you get from Evermeet.
(aside) Why won't anyone pull the Enlightened into Maztican trade? This could well end up with a noble marid "taking a look" at Evermeet's Ring Of Death and perhaps "helping" to make the island even more safe - completely inaccessible by sea... so many problems would be solved.
In 1368 DR the monopoly is over. Fort Flame isn't much of a trade port, however.
quote:
1364 DR - Year of the Wave: [...] In this same year, the first non-Amnian ships arrive from Faerûn
at Helmsport. The mercenaries lose over two-thirds of their complement to failed explorations and wild
Maztican elf attacks.
The Flaming Fist later establishes Fort Flame, a small embattled fort north of Kultaka and the coastal
islands just off the Bay of Balduran [...]
1365 DR - Year of the Sword: The Lord-Governor of New Amn refuses to allow 12 ships from Waterdeep
to trade at Helmsport because of the Council's restrictions on transoceanic trade. [...]
Within two months, a small colony called New Waterdeep forms farther west, off the Gulf of Kultaka; [...]
With the aid of some rangers and more wizards than the Amnians' usual wont, the Waterdhavian contingent
forges north and establishes a second colony called Trythosford [...] at the mouth of a river due west of
the offshore Zilhatec Island. Both new settlements are protected by log palisades and defensive ditches
1366 DR - Year of the Staff: After two long years, the Flaming Fist mercenary company receives
reinforcements at the embattled Fort Flame. [...] Newly arrived elves in the group hope to negotiate peace
with local wild elves.
[...]
1368 DR - Year of the Banner: This year signals the opening of major trade routes to and from Maztica.
After 18 months of frosty negotiations, the ports of Helmsport and New Waterdeep are opened to all parties,
Maztican and Faerûnian alike.
- Lands of Intrigue (Book 2: Amn, p.60)

Also:
quote:
Trade agreements made with the Lords' Alliance have Tethyr in tentative sea trade relations with Waterdeep, New Waterdeep of Maztica, and [...]
- Lands of Intrigue (Book 1: Tethyr, p.18)



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Icelander
Master of Realmslore

1229 Posts

Posted - 10 Jan 2017 :  07:00:03  Show Profile  Visit Icelander's Homepage Send Icelander a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Thanks, everyone, especially TBeholder's well-sourced post.

It looks like Nightal of 1367 DR is a very plausible time for a ship owner in Waterdeep to be waiting anxiously for his sweet sailing caravel dispatched to the New World to come back loaded with exotic goods and make him rich. Raevik Thorne's Starry Maid will be one of the first ships to take advantage of the new trade routes or it will never return, the victim of a too-risky early bet by the owner.

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dazzlerdal
Great Reader

United Kingdom
3245 Posts

Posted - 10 Jan 2017 :  08:22:49  Show Profile Send dazzlerdal a Private Message  Reply with Quote
There is an NPC in waterdeep who travels to maztica a lot and has mapped the area and i believe runs a shipping and mapping company.

I think he is a noble of the Zulth family but its off the top of my head so i could be very wrong

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sleyvas
Great Reader

USA
5236 Posts

Posted - 10 Jan 2017 :  14:04:50  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Markustay

Have you ever read any of the Dune series?

In some of the later books, the timeline GREATLY advances (1500 years?), and they had gone through this period known as 'The Scattering', wherein which many people 'flee' the galactic (core) empire and spread outward in the universe... taking their factions with them. When they return, the factions have become greatly altered, and are now at odds with the 'orthodox' methodology of the established factions. We also have something similar go on in the Wheel of Time series, when the Seanchan return to the main continent after many centuries.

So basically, what I am thinking is - turn it on its head. Have the returning wizards be much more neutral (the full gamut of alignments, really), and maybe have them call themselves 'The Crimson magi', or some-such, and instead of 'bowing knee' to Szass Tam and Thay again, they've decided they've found a better way, and maybe Thay should listen to THEM. Thats what happened in those two series, and it makes for a very interesting juxtaposition - who should the characters be backing, if any? Is one group really any better than the other?

To really make it work, you have to make at least one MAJOR philosophical difference in their approaches - maybe have the 'returnies' be rabidly anti-necromancy/undead (maybe they were influenced by the Eminence of Araunt in some way). So when they first return they'd be at odds with the Red Wizards, and perhaps people see them as 'saviors' from Thayan depredations... but then they start to see another side of them thats not so nice, and its like Thay all over again, but different. Maybe they begin to raid tombs and burn mummies in the Old Empires, and start raiding elven ruins just to destroy Baelnorn...stuff like that. In other words, they're just another flavor of 'extreme'.



Except for the anti-necromancy piece, you kind of hit on the head what I see happening. The returning "red wizards"... which you do have a good idea with changing their moniker... but part of me likes the idea that they WANT the old name and want the Thayans to change THEIR name. The major change I have is that even though they are a magocracy ruled by schools of magic, each school doesn't have one absolutely controlling leader. They setup something like an electoral college, where each Tharch has something akin to a Zulkir of each school of magic in their Tharch (and they'll probably use the old term I came up with of Aulkir). Each set of Aulkirs will elect a Zulkir from amongst their own whose vote will count as two of their own, and whose vote will be the deciding vote in the case of any tie vote. The Tharchion of any given Tharch will be elected by the existing Aulkirs of that Tharch with no influence from outside Zulkirs/Aulkirs, and the Tharchion of a Tharch is answerable ONLY to his local Aulkirs unless there is a vote by the council of Zulkirs which has a majority vote stating that the Tharchion perform some action.

I intend to basically write up this type of governance, but in actual play I don't see it seeing much use. However, it should show how this United Tharchions of Toril is much more separate, autonomous, and yet still cohesive. Its also putting a lot more local control in the hands of the Tharchions, and allows for competition between the merchants of the Tharchs. Flavor-wise, each Tharch will be thematically different as well (though the Lopango and two Katashakan enclaves will be similar due to how close they are and how much they interact).

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas
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sleyvas
Great Reader

USA
5236 Posts

Posted - 10 Jan 2017 :  14:10:21  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Markustay

Have you ever read any of the Dune series?

In some of the later books, the timeline GREATLY advances (1500 years?), and they had gone through this period known as 'The Scattering', wherein which many people 'flee' the galactic (core) empire and spread outward in the universe... taking their factions with them. When they return, the factions have become greatly altered, and are now at odds with the 'orthodox' methodology of the established factions. We also have something similar go on in the Wheel of Time series, when the Seanchan return to the main continent after many centuries.

So basically, what I am thinking is - turn it on its head. Have the returning wizards be much more neutral (the full gamut of alignments, really), and maybe have them call themselves 'The Crimson magi', or some-such, and instead of 'bowing knee' to Szass Tam and Thay again, they've decided they've found a better way, and maybe Thay should listen to THEM. Thats what happened in those two series, and it makes for a very interesting juxtaposition - who should the characters be backing, if any? Is one group really any better than the other?

To really make it work, you have to make at least one MAJOR philosophical difference in their approaches - maybe have the 'returnies' be rabidly anti-necromancy/undead (maybe they were influenced by the Eminence of Araunt in some way). So when they first return they'd be at odds with the Red Wizards, and perhaps people see them as 'saviors' from Thayan depredations... but then they start to see another side of them thats not so nice, and its like Thay all over again, but different. Maybe they begin to raid tombs and burn mummies in the Old Empires, and start raiding elven ruins just to destroy Baelnorn...stuff like that. In other words, they're just another flavor of 'extreme'.



Oh, and the thing they would be disgusted by with Old Thay is how they have ruined the land. They would look at this dead, blackened land that their forefathers (some of whom are still around mind you) say was once so verdant and abundant. They'd be disgusted by what Szass Tam and his fellow undead have done to the land. Some may even consider it their duty to overthrow Tam's regime and heal the land of their forefathers, and they might not even be above working with say the witches of Rashemen in doing so (both the Hathrans AND the Durthans). Above all things, the new red wizards believe in growing and improving upon the lands that they control (though using undead to farm is acceptable, controlling weather and stealing from other parts of the world is acceptable, using twisted magics to warp creatures to better serve them is acceptable, etc...).

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas

Edited by - sleyvas on 10 Jan 2017 14:14:35
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