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Markustay
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USA
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Posted - 29 Oct 2017 :  21:44:39  Show Profile Send Markustay a Private Message  Reply with Quote
@Sleyvas - we tried adding every little permutation of the VG into the lore, and although I tried my damndest to keep certain bits, I was opposed by other contributors, thinking I was making everything 'overly complicated' by trying to include everything (and, they were RIGHT). The game did what it did because it was a video game, and so certain things are not necessary when we 'translate' it all into D&D. We've been down this road, and it was a lot of work and pulling-teeth (and hair).

The Basal golems, once created, can be used 'as is', as golems, or 'melted down' (returned to energy - Arcane energy) on the spot as available spell slots for summonings, or other types of magic. It needs to be kept simple - other people had to hammer that into my head for awhile.

So basically, there are these artifacts, and there is a great risk using them, but the reward is that you can build an army of golems (kind of like what Tan Chin was doing all over the east, eh?) Now, you could either use those soldiers just the way they are, or 'sacrifice' four of them to create a 'mystical site' (I personally think the site should have to built normally in D&D, and then you 'sanctify' {consecrated} the site with the golems). The only reason for doing this, though, would to set things on 'auto pilot'. You should still be able to turn the creatures into anything you want, so long as the 'ring-bear'* is present. Since we'll never be creating the amount in D&D that they were creating in the video game, I'm not seeing how that's even an option anyone would want.

So if you don't use them as soldiers (as is) or to 'sanctify' an alter, you can just turn them into spell points/slots (which is why I say, once you do that, then you can just cast summoning spells anywhere you want). The fact that they can turn into 'people' is a little weird (obviously we need to lose the whole 'they become the color of your faction' thing, unless those are some type of uniform). It sounds to me like a type on non-living Deepspawn, almost. One limited to a specific range of creatures. Also, if you can turn them back into Basal golems, then they were never 'real' people to begin with. Unless you are somehow summoning the souls of dead warriors, wizards, druids, etc, and the golem takes on their likeness while 'possessed', and then you release the spirit bound inside, and it goes back to normal... that might work.

I still think it would probably be easiest to just lose the whole 'mystical site' thing. It makes everything too complex. It does have a lot of flavor, though. Also, you may want to check-out the radiant golem from SJ - it would probably make a good template to start from for a D&D version of a Basal Golem (that one is unique, and much bigger than a Basal Golem, and its sentient).

Anyhow, now to tack-on the novel baggage: They need to produce these Basal Golems at a limited rate, like maybe one per day. That means in a month you'd only have about 30 - not much of an army. Even given a year, 365 isn't that much a force either (probably enough to wreak some havoc in an area though, until a real army is sent to counter them). Also, in the old uE thread we worked-in that they would become sentient themselves, if left 'alive' too long (so basically, the makers figured out the same thing the people in Bladerunner did - the have to have an 'expiration date'). So thats two ways of limiting (making them viable for a D&D game).

However, getting back to the novels - the rate at which they can be produced can be boosted, if more power can be 'forced' into them. This is where those elder evils come in. The only problem is, I would have preferred to spread this out along a timeline, and BRJ bunched it altogether within a few years, which makes little sense to me. These guys landed on the shore (I thought we were going with a portal? So it was a Sea-Gate?), and within 27 years colonize a thousand miles of coastline and build (and I quote) "Five Great kingdoms". Either there was only a few dozen Mar and they had no concept of what a 'Great kingdom' was (doubtful, since they seem to be very much aware of the Zakharan empire just to the south). However, given the stuff in the video games, and how that is also all compressed (648-657 DR, so just ten years), it would seem these were at the very least 'little kingdoms', so there had to be at least a few thousand people involved in each one. On the other hand, 'tiny kingdoms' would indeed explain why something as slow-producing as the Bloodforges could actually make a major difference in a war down there. I'll have to mull this part over.

So perhaps the idea of 'sealing fiends' beneath/inside them came later, after the war, and thats the 'condition' the region is in in the novels. Tartyron may have been sealed some other way, and they hit upon the idea of attaching him to a Bloodforge and 'super-powering' it. That didn't work out so well, and we have that 'harvest of souls' thingie (or whatever it was called). Then the Grand Caliph shows up and does Grand Caliph stuff (they're cool like that) - he has his army of Dgen bind Tertyron and his lieutenants in/under the Bloodforges, and then sails home (after much murder and mayhem by his troops).

That could live us with one Obyrith/Elder Evil and a few archfiends bound in 2e/3e, which works just fine for the novels. And what WERE the Bloodforges before the silly Moonshaers found them? Prototypes for the Palace of the Purple Emperor, of course (the name was a bit of a joke - they amusingly referred to Pandorym as the 'purple Emperor' - their own emperor held no such title, EVER). Perhaps Datharathi/Nadir Crystal was a similar manifestation as Basal Golems? A non-sentient, 'raw material' version? Which of course gives me some ideas about other things...

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


Edited by - Markustay on 29 Oct 2017 22:04:57
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Markustay
Realms Explorer extraordinaire

USA
15675 Posts

Posted - 29 Oct 2017 :  21:46:09  Show Profile Send Markustay a Private Message  Reply with Quote
footnote for above -

*There were 'Pearls of Power' used to control the Bloodforges, but we also saw (in the game art) other items, so the assumption here is that folks mounted the Pearls in other things, most commonly jewelry, but there was at least one 'throne' involved (a little silly and ostentatious, if you ask me... and inefficient).


quote:
Originally posted by Lord Karsus

-First thing that popped in my head, from Game of Thrones: "What is dead may never die."

-Long live the Utter East though. I read through that archived link (I thought all that stuff got erased forever!), and man, the bunch of us really had some good stuff.
Yeah, I feel like it is a piece of our 'FR heritage'' now. Some of those old WotC thread-projects 'put us on the map', as it were.

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


Edited by - Markustay on 29 Oct 2017 21:51:50
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Lord Karsus
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USA
3182 Posts

Posted - 29 Oct 2017 :  22:44:14  Show Profile  Send Lord Karsus an AOL message Send Lord Karsus a Private Message  Reply with Quote
-Those god damn Bloodforges and Basal Golems...it's been like ten years, and we're still arguing about them, trying to figure them out. Some things never change!

-I feel like basically all my posts here now are nostalgia. I'm a 'Member Berry.

(A Tri-Partite Arcanist Who Has Forgotten More Than Most Will Ever Know)

Elves of Faerūn
Vol I- The Elves of Faerūn
Vol. III- Spells of the Elves
Vol. VI- Mechanical Compendium

Edited by - Lord Karsus on 29 Oct 2017 22:44:42
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sleyvas
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USA
7374 Posts

Posted - 30 Oct 2017 :  09:27:47  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Ok, so the Mar were an Asian looking people... not a darker-skinned people?

Oh, and when you guys were first mentioning this area, I was thinking these were separate parts of Ulgarth. Then I've come to realize why I never read any of this... this is a separate grouping of small countries below Ulgarth even.

Oh, and if Var was ruled by a dragon..... maybe we have a good reason for its rulership to fall after the transfer to Abeir, and Ulgarth to have taken over.

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas
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sleyvas
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USA
7374 Posts

Posted - 30 Oct 2017 :  09:53:11  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Markustay,

Yeah, I'd agree, the mystical site thing is hard to narrow in on, and the part where it creates troops, even more so. I'd definitely agree on the concept that the taking of 4 basal golems and making some kind of shrine should definitely involve someone making the idol for the shrine. In this concept, these basal golems are making idols similar to what's needed for "Priestess: Ancient World Divine Class" where you must pray/sacrifice at an idol to get your spell slots renewed. Basically, I'm picturing like 4 golems going up and touching a statue in a temple, and all of a sudden they fade away and it becomes viable.

The part where it makes "creatures".... I only see three options

A) it makes certain components that a person would need to be that class (i.e. divine focus, arcane focus, etc...)
B) the basal golem "bonds" with a regular being/creature to make a fantastic creature (basal golem bonds with a human and the human becomes a paladin.... it bonds with a lion and the lion becomes a griffin). Most classes, I wouldn't go for this much... it could work for awakening sorcerers.
C) the spirit of a being is summoned. Now this can be undead. This could also be something like a telthor. It could also be a dream being and perhaps it only lasts a certain amount of time.

You know, the one thing I kept thinking about when I saw the fury was Ukko and his air maidens. Ah, that's probably pushing things.

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas
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Markustay
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Posted - 30 Oct 2017 :  15:53:32  Show Profile Send Markustay a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I picture the Mar being like Pakistani, or maybe Tempat Larang was like Pakistan, and the Venesci Hamlet (Mar area in the uE) like Afghanistan.

They are all part of the theoretical 'Ang' ethnic group, which was almost entirely subsumbed by Shou-Lung (which itself is actually made of a several different groups - the people of each province (most of which being bigger than Heartlands nations) look slightly different than the others, because of different percentages of ancient ethnicities.

So yes, they should be darker skinned, but the Mar themselves are probably lighter than average Ang, because of racial mixing in the Utter East, and theoretically before coming to the uE. In the old uE thread we theorized that the Mar had crossed the mountains during the 'cataclysm' which destroyed Tempat Larang, lead by their gods. They reached Langdarma - a valley holy to the Vedic pantheon (like 'paradise') - and all their cares and wants would be provided for. However, a large number of them quickly became dissatisfied, feeling almost like 'pets', and continued their journey west, finally crossing the Yehimals and settling in the Utter East.

At the time, there were some tribes living in the region, originally from Zakhara, with some peaceful, and other raiders (think 'Scythians'), but there were enough of them to carve-out a region of their own, plus create a few small villages throughout the region (acting as fixed 'trading posts' for the nomadic tribesmen). Basically, 'they found their niche'.

Then the Ffolk (first wave) showed up, and in the beginning there was some peaceful settling (the vingette in the GHotR says as much), but then more and more came and finally their was friction between the groups; the Mar not in Vanesci province (a plateau near the mountains) were simply absorbed by the newly forming nations, and the nomads were pushed north and south, or up into the mountains. While this was taking place, a large contingent of Northmen showed up - most likely having been watching the Ffolk at sea, and deciding they wanted 'in' on this new land. They set up their own base-of-operations to the south (what would eventually become the city of Konigheim), and raided the coast indiscriminately. It was a northmen raider who discovered the first bloodforge (Rathgar). These were 'hidden' in mystical sites, which the tribesmen and Mar were happy just to leave alone* (superstition and all). When the Ffolk showed up, they also had some experience with 'mystical sites' (their Moonwells), and they did plan to investigate them eventually, but their own druids had warned them to leave them be 'lest great evil be unleashed upon the world'. The Northmen, of course, didn't give an osquip's arse about any of that - they just wanted phat lewtz.


*This is a fairly major deviation from how I was originally spinning the bloodforges - as 'Lifeforges' brought across the mounatins by the Mar themselves. I think I'd rather have them go further back in time, now that we have all this cosmological cr.. stuff... from 4e behind us 9and also, it ties into the whole 'lovecraftian vibe' better). I'm also pretty certain I no longer want to blame the Imaskari for the few 'bound' Elder evils in the area - since the last time we worked on this region we've had so much 'Imaskar' shoveled at us I'd rather push that back in time with the rest of it (I'm thinking Batrachi turning on 'their masters').

A decade of letting something 'stew' is a wonderful way to gain clarity. I can now honestly approach this all with a brand-new perspective (keeping what we did that was great, and ditching the rest).

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


Edited by - Markustay on 30 Oct 2017 20:54:30
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Markustay
Realms Explorer extraordinaire

USA
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Posted - 30 Oct 2017 :  16:43:21  Show Profile Send Markustay a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Barbarians:
We have the Sharran tribes who were mostly peaceful, until the Narfelli showed up in Shandaular (Council Hills), and the two mixed and became the Arkauins, and that occurred in -946 DR. These would have been pure Narfelli stock, because the Rus did not come into Rashemen until -105 DR.

HOWEVER, in -69 DR a group of Illuskans do show up in Shadaular, and eventually mix with the local Arkauins. Now, using BCM's timeline form the old thread, we have 'Norse like' Arkauins in Ulgarth in 83 DR, raiding into Durpar*. Then in 202 DR we have Mulhorand getting so annoyed by the disruption in 'southern trade' that they send their armies to nearly wipe-out the Ulgarth barbarians. Now, if we theorize that these forces met somewhere along the northern coasts of The Golden Waters, then theoretically there could have been 'women & children' left alone, back home in Ulgarth. These could have then grown up to be a somewhat more sedate version of their forefathers (this allows up to keep our 'Norse-like' trappings). Also, this means those same cultural aspects in Ulgarth might be almost completely unrelated to whats going on down in Konigheim.

So thus far we have two groups of 'Arkauins' - a more Sharran variety that went south and west from the council Hills, and the later ones (by almost a thousand years!) that had an admixture of Northmen blood, going south and east. Note that some tried to go north, and ran into the Old Empires, and that didn't work out so well for them (thats canon as well - in fact, all of this post has been canon so far).

Then we have the nomad tribes of the uE (we have no name for them), which aren't really canon, just conjecture (after all, it seems a bit weird there was this place that no-one lived-in for thousands of years).

And we have the Mar, which aren't 'barbarians', but might be construed as 'savages' compared to the 'more advanced' Ffolk and Northmen who showed up (not really though - the Mar just preferred to live a more simplistic, non-aggressive lifestyle).

I am also thinking that perhaps before "The Scattering of Fate" down in Zakhara, this coast was very similar to the 'Wild Coast' of Greyhawk - monstrous tribes all living and warring on each other here. That would explain why they are all up in the mountains now; when the Zakharan nomads first showed up en masse, they systematically expunged the monsters, one group at a time. Whereas the creatures may have been way more powerful as a whole, they were disorganized and more used to fighting each other than working together. Then, once the regions as fairly 'cleansed', the tribal groups of the nomads went their own ways. This probably all occurred right around the time Imaskar was collapsing.

The only problem with that last part is, why didn't the 'monsters' ever bother the Mystical sites? I suppose I could say the Imaskari had been guarding them up until that point, but then I have to answer the 'why?' question, and involve them heavily in something I'd rather not. Also, if I want the Muhjari (Durpari culture/ethnicity) to be related to Zakhara, then the nomads would have had to have been in the Utter East since before -8350 DR. I think I may have a newer spin for that {stay tuned}.


*Durpar didn't exist along the north coast of The Golden Waters back then - this can be 'extracted' from the canon by way of logic: their original capital was along the south coast (canon), and they had cities spread along there (also canon), but they were chased-out by 'monsters' (canon again). 'Veldorn' first formed around the Curna Mountains, and they had completely taken the southern coast of The Golden waters away from the Durpari (once again, CANON). Durpar was forced to move at first west, and then east again along the northern coast, as Veldorn spread (canonically, Veldorn {The Beastlands'} was located IN the Curna Mounatains, then along the southern coast, and then west {taking Old Vaelen}, and eventually wound-up where it is today, spreading north from Old Vaelen along the Giant's Belt. What that means to us is that when the 'yucky barbarians' in Ulgarth were attacking Durpar, Durpar itself wasn't where it is today - it was to the south! That means that entire stretch of land along the north there could have been claimed by Ulgarth at that time. That could mean Ulgarth may have had a border with Mulhorand.

EDIT:
In fact, we even have an older name for Ulgarth! What was that again BCM? Ulgor, or some-such? that may have just been the 'tribal lads' of the Eastern branch of Arkauins!

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


Edited by - Markustay on 30 Oct 2017 16:54:19
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sleyvas
Great Reader

USA
7374 Posts

Posted - 30 Oct 2017 :  18:46:23  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Markustay

I picture the Mar being like Pakistani, or maybe Tempat Larang was like Pakistan, and the Venesci Hamlet (Mar area in the uE) like Afghanistan.

They are all part of the theoretical 'Ang' ethnic group, which was almost entirely subsumbed by Shou-Lung (which itself is actually made of a several different groups - the people of each province (most of which being bigger than Heartlands nations) look slightly different than the others, because of different percentages of ancient ethnicities.

So yes, they should be darker skinned, but the Mar themselves are probably lighter than average Ang, because of racial mixing in the Utter East, and theoretically before coming to the uE. In the old uE thread we theorized that the Mar had crossed the mountains during the 'cataclysm' which destroyed Tempat Larang, lead by their gods. They reached Langdarma - a valley holy to the Vedic pantheon (like 'paradise') - and all their cares and wants would be provided for. However, a large number of them quickly became dissatisfied, feeling almost like 'pets', and continued their journey west, finally crossing the Yehimals and settling in the Utter East.

At the time, there were some tribes living in the region, originally from Zakhara, with some peaceful, and other raiders (think 'Saracens'), but there were enough of them to carve-out a region of their own, plus create a few small villages throughout the region (acting as fixed 'trading posts' for the nomadic tribesmen). Basically, 'they found their niche'.

Then the Ffolk (first wave) showed up, and in the beginning there was some peaceful settling (the vingette in the GHotR says as much), but then more and more came and finally their was friction between the groups; the Mar not in Vanesci province (a plateau near the mountains) were simply absorbed by the newly forming nations, and the nomads were pushed north and south, or up into the mountains. While this was taking place, a large contingent of Northmen showed up - most likely having been watching the Ffolk at sea, and deciding they wanted 'in' on this new land. They set up their own base-of-operations to the south (what would eventually become the city of Konigheim), and raided the coast indiscriminately. It was a northmen raider who discovered the first bloodforge (Rathgar). These were 'hidden' in mystical sites, which the tribesmen and Mar were happy just to leave alone* (superstition and all). When the Ffolk showed up, they also had some experience with 'mystical sites' (their Moonwells), and they did plan to investigate them eventually, but their own druids had warned them to leave them be 'lest great evil be unleashed upon the world'. The Northmen, of course, didn't give an osquip's arse about any of that - they just wanted phat lewtz.


*This is a fairly major deviation from how I was originally spinning the bloodforges - as 'Lifeforges' brought across the mounatins by the Mar themselves. I think I'd rather have them go further back in time, now that we have all this cosmological cr.. stuff... from 4e behind us 9and also, it ties into the whole 'lovecraftian vibe' better). I'm also pretty certain I no longer want to blame the Imaskari for the few 'bound' Elder evils in the area - since the last time we worked on this region we've had so much 'Imaskar' shoveled at us I'd rather push that back in time with the rest of it (I'm thinking Batrachi turning on 'their masters').

A decade of letting something 'stew' is a wonderful way to gain clarity. I can now honestly approach this all with a brand-new perspective (keeping what we did that was great, and ditching the rest).



Yeah, I like the idea of the Batrachi having something to do with the bloodforges. In fact, we don't know WHERE the ritual that freed the Primordials just prior to the Abeir/Toril split was done. For all we know, the bloodforges were a part of that.

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas
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sleyvas
Great Reader

USA
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Posted - 30 Oct 2017 :  18:53:29  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Why were the mystical sites left relatively unbothered? Well, maybe its because they were protected somehow. Illusions maybe. Spells to make one take another path. Spells that killed the individuals who wandered in. Maybe just the place was so under populated that those sections of the wilderness just weren't explored.

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas
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Markustay
Realms Explorer extraordinaire

USA
15675 Posts

Posted - 30 Oct 2017 :  19:51:03  Show Profile Send Markustay a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Except that everyone else seems to be able to bother them. My latest thoughts in this regard (I am still formulating something cohesive) is that at least one nomad chieftan 'toyed with' the mystical sites and a Bloodforge, despite superstitious awe, and thus created quite a few of those monsters (all the ones from the video game, most of which now live on the outskirts of the Utter East, in the wilderness areas and the mountains). Thus, it was the influx of nomads from the south that also caused the rise in monsters in the region. The original 'mystcial sites' (before they got completely plundered during the Blodforge Wars) were probably Batrachi temples/alters, dedicated to 'Dark Gods' (and those Dark gods may be the Elder evils trapped beneath them). I think even most 'monsters' would avoid a site radiating psuedo-natural (Far Realms) energies.

Both dragons and dgen seem to avoid the uE, and I think we can trace that back to Zakhara lore - it seems there are NO dragons in Zakhara and thats because the very large population of genies have stopped them cold in the past (there's a great story about that in the first Al-Qadim book, IIRC). So dragons and dgen seem to have this detente, and the Utter East has become something of a 'no-mans land' between the two powerful, magical races. Occasionally an individual may settle in the area, but eventually one 'side' or the other makes sure that dosn't last for long. Sphinxes are probably the dominant monster in the region, I would imagine, given their existence both to the north and south.

And lastly, the whole reason why I came to post again - I finally found the guy's name and the relevant quote - Surtava, who was an Ulgarian Prince, before he became the founder of the Padhran faith. Thus, the lands around the Golden waters - most especially the northeast and southeast, may have been know as 'Ulgar' or 'Ulgaria' "around 3000 years ago", so right around the time following the fall of Imaskar (actually, about an 800-year window, plenty of time for the survivor states to have arisen in the Raurin region).

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

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Markustay
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Posted - 31 Oct 2017 :  20:46:49  Show Profile Send Markustay a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Where is "Herne's Wood" and the locations in that wood from? The VG, or the novels?

I think I should make the Beowood (stupid name, in retrospect) "Herne's Wood", and locate that stuff there - get it out of the Sempadan. I'm not even sure why I created The Beowood - seems pointless. No other maps have it but mine (as far as I can tell ATM), and unfortunatelly we have another detailed map of that same exact region (Yakmen article in Dragon #241), that we somehow completely overlooked in the original Utter East thread/project. There are also the maps from Ruined Kingdoms - an Al-Qadim product that ALSO covers this same area (Sempadan jungle, without any of the 'Norse' weirdness). So goodbye 'Beowood'. We hardly knew ye.

Time for some fudgery.

EDIT:
So here I am, looking for any and all 'nearby' lore to apply, and I am looking through Corsairs of the Great Sea to see if there is anything I can use, and as I went to the back of the book to look at the maps (my usual 'haunt' in most sources), I came across some info at the very back of the book that I had never noticed before...

Long before the reign of the First Grand Caliph (which I believe means back before the AQ timeline even begins, about a thousand years ago), the Corsair Domains were called the "Isles of Fear", and were home to "a terrible cult which worshiped an elemental water god called Istishia". Now I just checked, and Zakhara does have knowledge of the elemental lords (after all, the place is rife with genies), but no-one really worships them, because they are considered, "cold, aloof, and uncaring" for mortals. They actually refer to them as 'The Cold Gods', and don't even pay them lip-service (very odd, considering the extremely elemental nature of the setting).

I think the Zakharans understood the nature of primordials much better than the northerners did, in hindsight.

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


Edited by - Markustay on 31 Oct 2017 21:48:12
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Lord Karsus
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Posted - 31 Oct 2017 :  22:40:59  Show Profile  Send Lord Karsus an AOL message Send Lord Karsus a Private Message  Reply with Quote
-"Gods", "primordials", whatever the D&D nomenclature of the day aside, I remember the elemental deities being described as alien and aloof in old sources as well.

(A Tri-Partite Arcanist Who Has Forgotten More Than Most Will Ever Know)

Elves of Faerūn
Vol I- The Elves of Faerūn
Vol. III- Spells of the Elves
Vol. VI- Mechanical Compendium
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BadCatMan
Learned Scribe

Australia
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Posted - 01 Nov 2017 :  01:14:02  Show Profile Send BadCatMan a Private Message  Reply with Quote
The wiki is your friend: Herne's Wood is from the game. Comparing maps puts it in the north/northwest edhe of the Sempadan Forest.

I'll hold that "Ulgarian" and "Ulgarthan" could simply be a different demonym for Ulgarth. The Realms has stacks of those: e.g., Cormyte, Cormyrean.

quote:
Originally posted by Markustay

There were 'Pearls of Power' used to control the Bloodforges, but we also saw (in the game art) other items, so the assumption here is that folks mounted the Pearls in other things, most commonly jewelry, but there was at least one 'throne' involved (a little silly and ostentatious, if you ask me... and inefficient).


Que? There was only one Pearl of Power in the game: found in a deep barrow tomb, it was an artifact that could bring life to "arcane inventions" like the Juggernaut (a steampunk mecha tank).


Okay, I can now work up another B&M campaign for the wiki. But you get to choose! Should I go to Konigheim, the Puzzle Palace, and the Hall of Wonders, and cover the Pearl of Power? Or should I go to the Realms of Lands, Tides, and Fire and cover Tartyron and the Circle of Order?

BadCatMan, B.Sc. (Hons), M.Sc.
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Markustay
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Posted - 01 Nov 2017 :  02:10:38  Show Profile Send Markustay a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I'm going to have to make Herne's Wood a separate place - the Sempadan is Jungle (it could have been connected in the past). It will be in the same area, though, so its not a big deal. It just conflicts a lot with the Yakmen material (its well inside the Yakmen kingdom, in the province of Sun's Eye - same province the coastal city of Lipo belongs to).

Do Tartyron and that stuff - I NEED to know!

EDIT: In the Herne's Wood entry, this reads weird -
quote:
At last, an itinerant bard told the commander that a great mage known as Tyranis Shagal, whose achievements were impressive. Seeking to win glory by defeating a worthy opponent, the Legendary Campaign commander issued a challenged to Shagal to fight a bloodforge battle.
The first sentence is 'off'. change the word 'that' to 'about' and it works.

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


Edited by - Markustay on 01 Nov 2017 02:16:37
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BadCatMan
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Posted - 01 Nov 2017 :  02:29:04  Show Profile Send BadCatMan a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Ugh, I forgot to include the bit about Shagal laying claim to Herne's Wood. Fixed it now, thanks. (I had that name stuck in my head since I wrote the article; my subconscious must have been trying to tell me something.)

Herne's Wood lies at the foot of the tallest and coldest mountains on the planet, and is separated by two rivers. It's very possible for it not to be "jungle". And the Sun's Eye province (thank another wiki editor, Artemaz, for the stirling work on the Yikarian Empire), doesn't extend past the World Pillar Mountains, so the Yakfolk haven't claimed the Sempadan Forest. Sun's Eye's border with Konigheim in the west is more problematic.

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Markustay
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Posted - 01 Nov 2017 :  04:20:57  Show Profile Send Markustay a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Well, I was moving it (or rather, moving the old Beowood) NW from the Sempadan, and NE of its own, old location. It would have been the part of the sempadan that went 'up and over' the mountains there, so the forest thins-out near the mountain tops, thus really a 'split' forest (Herne's Wood being the coniferous forest found in the higher altitudes). I am going to definitely do a DMsGuild thing with this (something small, nothing major), and I'll put a little something in about how the Sempadan was a much larger forest encompassing the whole of northern Zakhara at one time (on up into the Utter East a little bit). Thus, the maps from the game - which should date from the 600's DR, should still be accurate as of that time period.

I may even blame the separation of the forest on the Yakmen, who didn't like 'lesser folk' using it to get about within THEIR kingdom, unseen. Rather than a dragon (which have been overused in Faerūn), they probably got an efreet to do the job.

Shag... al? Now I am picturing a Mage that looks like Austin Powers.

EDIT:
And I've moved the border of Konigheim north, to avoid that other problem. We can just say that was a very rough map in the novels. I don't feel nearly as leery about tweaking stuff now as I did a decade ago, what with two major cataclysms, an entire planet, and primordials all appearing right under our feet. 'Canon' just ain't what it used to be.

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


Edited by - Markustay on 01 Nov 2017 04:24:57
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sleyvas
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Posted - 01 Nov 2017 :  11:51:21  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Markustay

Where is "Herne's Wood" and the locations in that wood from? The VG, or the novels?

I think I should make the Beowood (stupid name, in retrospect) "Herne's Wood", and locate that stuff there - get it out of the Sempadan. I'm not even sure why I created The Beowood - seems pointless. No other maps have it but mine (as far as I can tell ATM), and unfortunatelly we have another detailed map of that same exact region (Yakmen article in Dragon #241), that we somehow completely overlooked in the original Utter East thread/project. There are also the maps from Ruined Kingdoms - an Al-Qadim product that ALSO covers this same area (Sempadan jungle, without any of the 'Norse' weirdness). So goodbye 'Beowood'. We hardly knew ye.

Time for some fudgery.

EDIT:
So here I am, looking for any and all 'nearby' lore to apply, and I am looking through Corsairs of the Great Sea to see if there is anything I can use, and as I went to the back of the book to look at the maps (my usual 'haunt' in most sources), I came across some info at the very back of the book that I had never noticed before...

Long before the reign of the First Grand Caliph (which I believe means back before the AQ timeline even begins, about a thousand years ago), the Corsair Domains were called the "Isles of Fear", and were home to "a terrible cult which worshiped an elemental water god called Istishia". Now I just checked, and Zakhara does have knowledge of the elemental lords (after all, the place is rife with genies), but no-one really worships them, because they are considered, "cold, aloof, and uncaring" for mortals. They actually refer to them as 'The Cold Gods', and don't even pay them lip-service (very odd, considering the extremely elemental nature of the setting).

I think the Zakharans understood the nature of primordials much better than the northerners did, in hindsight.



And yet the Geomancers worshipped Grumbar specifically, and apparently we have a cult of Istishia down amongst those islands. I'd imagine the worship of the elemental lords being suppressed is being pushed by the genies, who would rather get this faith energy themselves.

BTW, I just checked Ruined Kingdoms. The map doesn't go up high enough to show any of this area. I also checked the Land of Fate box, and it doesn't either. The only thing I can figure is that most of the map you guys pulled for this came from Blood and magic OR maybe the novel "faces of deception" had something in the beginning like a lot of them do. The Dragon #241 map only shows the barest bottom of the area.

In fact, it does look like faces of deception had a map, and though its bare bones, it may be the most developed official one there is.

http://www.candlekeep.com/downloads/uttereast.jpg

and it looks like on yours you combined the map lore of Dragon 241 article and this from faces of deception, but neither mentions a beowood or shows it. Perhaps the novel itself did? Was the novel based in Konigheim (I ask this because it seems like the Mead Hall of the Northmen is listed on the map for the novel, so I assume that it and Konigheim were a bigger portion of the novel).

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas

Edited by - sleyvas on 01 Nov 2017 12:31:12
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sleyvas
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Posted - 01 Nov 2017 :  12:09:50  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by BadCatMan

Well, I'm glad someone's reading my wiki articles.

I suppose this interest means I should make Tartyron Unbound my next Utter East wiki project? From the campaign intro, "In the beginning of all things, the Realms were a frenzy of creation. And from this turmoil there arose primitive nations. When the lords of order ascended to govern east of the Great Sea, one among them was cast down for his chaotic schemes. It was in exile that he took the name Tartyron. Tartyron loathed his underground kingdom. He spent his rage upon those that stumbled into his prison. And he waited, for one day he would escape and unleash chaos upon the world." He's the Lord of Chaos, ejected from the Circle of Order, who are the Lord of Lands, the Lord of Flame, and the Lady of Tides. Carrying the elemental theme on would make Tartyron a lord of air or skies, ruler of a hypothesized Realm of Skies, perhaps. He's more of a death knight or blackguard sort of character, but his campaign outcome allows him a beneficial role: chaos balances order and brings change. However, he's the only real candidate in the game for the sealed evils in a can mentioned in Faces of Deception and Grand History.

Basal golems are so named because they're the basic or base unit for all other units and structures.

I'm hesitant to put the Imaskari in Ulgarth or the Utter East, because the Gate of Iron was meant to keep them out, somehow, to some extent.


Oh! What you all haven't seen (unless you read my wiki articles...) is the piece in the Blood & Magic readme file for the Demo version (but not the full version, which I'd used previously). It's very suggestive and describes the game in-universe, making things clearer:

"Making the most of pre-dawn light, your trusted followers prowl the edge of the battlefield in search of suitable terrain. They release their heavy burden in a level clearing, and quickly set about their most urgent task. Your Bloodforge is fixed into the earth before the first rays of golden light touch the spires of the enemy stronghold. To calm your nerves, you recite the principles of warfare as instructed by the Great Mage."
"The Bloodforge is the mother of battle. It is pregnant with magic which grants life to my army. We of the faith call this power mana, the food which nourishes our practice."
"Basal Golems are the children of battle. They are formed from the mana in my Bloodforge, and serve my great purpose without question or regret. When they are idle, their meditations gather mana to supply our cause."
"The mystical sites are the temples of battle. My followers erect them to honor the gods. In exchange for this homage, our Golems may transcend their meager forms when they visit these sacred shrines."
"I am the master of battle. Through the rights of conflict I shall achieve great ends. My position is not on the field of battle, but in that high place where all its glory can be surveyed. My commands are not issued by writ or by proxy, but with a marble oracle created by the Great Mage. Such are his teachings of its use..."

While the description could be metaphor, I rather like wondering if it's not. The Bloodforge is the mother of the battle, and she is a hungry mother, endlessly consuming the raw magic and life energy that is mana as her food, birthing golems and monsters as her children of battle, encouraging unending war to bring yet more mana and birth yet more children. We're told using the bloodforges weakened ancient prisons for antediluvian horrors, and keep looking for a connection and possibilities, but what if the bloodforges are one and the same the prisons and the antediluvian horrors?

It's said in game that the gods created Bloodforges. But only five gods are mentioned in the game – Chauntea, Mystra, Tempus, Lathander, Myrkul – and their symbols appear on the Well of Immortals at the end of the game. (And popping up in various places in the background, the gear of Gond, as well as a Festival of Talos in Konigheim, which keeps burning down) Gods of life, undeath, creation, magic, and war. What else would they produce but a magic-hungry mother of battle and death?




Ok.... let's play with the idea for a second that the blood forges are meant to imprison a primordial not feed it. The blood forges are pregnant with magic in the form of mana. Let's say that this mana is "divine power" and that basal golems actually don't make "arcane power". Maybe they take raw magic (not weave based) and convert it into "divine power". This divine power is meant to be gathered in order to fuel the imprisonment of primordial(s) (which we know that long ago, primordials were imprisoned by the gods... and that later the batrachi released them somehow).

So, maybe periodically these blood forges must create basal golems and "refuel" the blood forge by drawing on the raw magic... but they are slow at it? So, then they use what energy they can gather to create "mystical sites" which are temples, and they draw followers of the gods, and these "basal golems" merge their essence with a mortal follower to quickly increase their "level" as a minion for a god (whether that be a cleric, druid, paladin, ranger, eldritch knight, arcane trickster, wizard, sorcerer, monk, warlock, etc...), and then this follower does work in the god's name and thus increasing the faith energy sent to the mystical site (idol) which is tied back to the bloodforge. Unfortunately, it would seem that these followers of the various bloodforges are meant to attack followers of another bloodforge, thus essentially pitting one deity's followers against another maybe.... but the gods consider this understandable in the great scheme of things, essentially sacrificing mortal followers to contain a greater evil. Would this even remotely follow the lore of the game itself?

EDIT: I reread the blood forges entry... read the next thread. I think it maybe fits the lore more accurately.

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas

Edited by - sleyvas on 01 Nov 2017 12:32:44
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sleyvas
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Posted - 01 Nov 2017 :  12:13:33  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by BadCatMan

Huh. Somehow my response to sleyvas appeared before his post.



Oh, probably I was "editing" my original post or something.

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas
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sleyvas
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Posted - 01 Nov 2017 :  12:25:21  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by BadCatMan

That's because it isn't complete, there's still everything from Faces of Deception to include. (One day, one day.) The novel describes them as golden skinned (so, light brown) and black haired. This is also where the Ffolk and Northmen are confirmed.

There's no evidence that a bloodforge was used for human sacrifice (no evidence that it was not, either, though the goblin and harpies of the Kingdom of Nix tossed creatures into cauldrons to extra mana to power theirs). The truth is much weirder:
http://forgottenrealms.wikia.com/wiki/Bloodforge
The actual connection to the mysterious prisons of fiends and undead and "antediluvian horrors", and even what these prisons were or why, is still very unclear and speculative. It began in Faces of Deception and was reiterated in Grand History; it may be alluding to the Tartyron Unbound campaign in Blood & Magic.

quote:
Originally posted by Markustay

Well, see that? I didn't go to the link... I didn't have to.



I'm hurt.




HMMMMMMMM, so golden-skinned COULD also be aasimar.... and they are called the "Mar". So, maybe the aasimar are the eventual descendants of the children of gods put here to stop people from using the blood forges (which maybe were the creations of batrachi?).

Ok, so based on what I see on the wiki for bloodforges, each use actually weakened the prison of the being beneath it. So, it wouldn't fit from my previous thread that the gods created the bloodforges to increase the hold on the prison. However, what if in fact this was a deception to work mortals against the gods. The basal golems create a mystical site (an idol devoted to the concept of a deity), and then they "bond" with a mortal at said site to give them power "from a deity". This is the deception... this power isn't from a deity, but rather its more like "pact magic". So, this mortal goes out and uses his faith... which the basal golem merged with him draws upon and delivers back to the "idol" ..... and then the blood forge periodically dumps this power from the mystical site back to itself and uses it to weaken the structure holding the imprisoned primordial being? This work better?

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas
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BadCatMan
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Posted - 01 Nov 2017 :  12:45:06  Show Profile Send BadCatMan a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Actually, no, Faces of Deception doesn't have a map (or at least my copy doesn't). In fact, I've been unable to work out where that map came from. I couldn't find it in Realms of Mystery either. Most likely, given the prominent indication of Eldrinpar, I think it comes from one of the Double Diamond Triangle Saga, but they're very difficult to lay hands on. If anyone can confirm which one, they'd be a champion.

Markustay invented this "Beowood".

Here is my revision to Utter East's prehistory with the history from the Tartyron Unbound and Nuts and !Bolts campaigns of Blood & Magic:
http://forgottenrealms.wikia.com/wiki/Utter_East?curid=61614&diff=368095&oldid=367822
Please compare this to the beginning of the game's account, and tell me if my interpretation feels off:
“In the beginning of all things, the realms were a frenzy of creation. And from this turmoil there arose primitive nations. When the lords of order ascended to govern east of the Great Sea, one among them was cast down for his chaotic schemes. It was in exile that he took the name Tartyron.”
“Tartyron loathed his underground kingdom. He spent his rage upon those that stumbled into his prison. And he waited, for one day he would escape and unleash chaos upon the world.”

While my focus is only precisely rephrasing the lore of the game, how I place it against other events can put distinct spins on things. For example, it's easy to imply that, say, Tartyron is the bound "antediluvian horror" of the novels, whether fiend or undead, simply by putting the events side-by-side, not even merging them. So I tried to keep it neutral and open to interpretation, not to make my own, nor to speculate. And of course to keep it simple and maintain primacy of FR sourcebooks and novels over the licensed game.

Ultimately, however, the whole question of the Utter East's prehistory is most likely a product of Troy Denning, the DDTS authors, and Brian R James rewriting events of the game and Denning's Faces of Deception, and later even our own musings in the original thread, and either getting it a bit garbled (easy to mistake the two sets of ancient bound villains, especially if don't pay much attention to the rubbish game), deliberately erasing the silly bits (the game is very silly and nonsense like the Whamite Isles from The Great Khan Game has been erased from the Realms in later lore), deciding to do a better version (the game story isn't great), or writing alternate versions with the serial numbers filed off (if parts of the game couldn't be used for some reason). The merely licensed game isn't exactly canon, nor even trying to be. I feel like the authors keep trying to throw this cruft out, and we keep dragging it back in.

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dazzlerdal
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Posted - 01 Nov 2017 :  14:05:38  Show Profile Send dazzlerdal a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Everyone does seem to be focusing on specifics a bit too much for a second rate source.

The premise of an ancient evil imprisoned beneath the ground is a fine idea. Whether the blood forges and blood golems are a means to weaken or strengthen its prison doesnt matter.

Ignore what the golems do in the game, thats computer game mechanics and not applicable. Its a golem, an artificial being with rudimentary intelligence. Having the golems merge to form houses doesnt sound like a great idea to me but making them merge to form larger golems is better.

So decide where these blood forges are located, who controls them, and what they are ordering the golems to do.

That is all that is important to a GM and the players. Then you can include a sub story about whether the golems weaken the prison or not.


Its clear that the god stuff is incorrectly placed, put it down to bad research and unreliable narrator. Not that it matters. The utter east likely worshipped gods of the various types mentioned but have different names (if that means alias to you then so be it). The gods arent going to take part in any adventure in the region so they dont matter they are just there for background flavour.

Stick with what we know about the region then alter the computer game to fit in with that rather than the other way around.


Incidentally the imasmari summoned an ancient evil creature right in the middle of inupras and it wrecked the place. It is called a krakentua in GHoTR which makes it some old batrachi monster or creation. How it got there (there were batrachi runes on the imaskari portal so its likely batrachi lived in raurin as well as the utter east) isnt important, it may have been summoned from another plane or place or the imaskari may have released it from beneath raurin or maybe even recreated one using batrachi magic.

So there may be a few of these ancient evil monsters around the utter east.

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Edited by - dazzlerdal on 01 Nov 2017 14:09:33
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Markustay
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Posted - 01 Nov 2017 :  17:27:42  Show Profile Send Markustay a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by sleyvas

And yet the Geomancers worshipped Grumbar specifically, and apparently we have a cult of Istishia down amongst those islands. I'd imagine the worship of the elemental lords being suppressed is being pushed by the genies, who would rather get this faith energy themselves.
This might be the base way to spin things; lets say the 'barbarian' tribesmen that migrated up from Zakhara had ancient superstitions about such beings, because the Dgen wanted to suppress worship of the elemental lords (because the only way a 'lord' can get more powerful is by making the 'king' less so). At the same time, the elemental lords would still push for their worship, so such things would have to be done "in secret" - ie., 'cults'.

quote:
Originally posted by sleyvas

BTW, I just checked Ruined Kingdoms. The map doesn't go up high enough to show any of this area. I also checked the Land of Fate box, and it doesn't either. The only thing I can figure is that most of the map you guys pulled for this came from Blood and magic OR maybe the novel "faces of deception" had something in the beginning like a lot of them do. The Dragon #241 map only shows the barest bottom of the area.
The map from Dragon #241 is the connecting piece that borders both the other maps/settings. It more than just the maps - there is the lore as well. The Fallen Kingdoms of Nog and Kador existed in the Sempadan.

quote:
Originally posted by sleyvas

In fact, it does look like faces of deception had a map, and though its bare bones, it may be the most developed official one there is.

http://www.candlekeep.com/downloads/uttereast.jpg
Yes - thats the map I worked off of, but I added way to much flatland there (because I followed that map too closely) - the Utter East should be mostly mountainous, with the only flatlands near the coast. I am using my continental map as a base for a newer map (just blowing up the other one and adding sites) so we can get a much better idea of a 'true' layout for the place. The only way to really see the overlap from those various sources is to provide a bigger perspective (thus, this map will 'pan back' from the view of my original Ue map).

quote:
Originally posted by sleyvas

and it looks like on yours you combined the map lore of Dragon 241 article and this from faces of deception, but neither mentions a beowood or shows it. Perhaps the novel itself did? Was the novel based in Konigheim (I ask this because it seems like the Mead Hall of the Northmen is listed on the map for the novel, so I assume that it and Konigheim were a bigger portion of the novel).
At the time I did that map - and IIRC when we working on the K-T and Ue threads - no-one seemed to even know about the article in Dragon regarding the Yakmen.

Two things might have happened there to create the Beowood. First, I may have been actively creating a spot for Herne's Wood and was talked out of it (BCM seems to be insistent on putting it IN the Sempedan, and that never felt right to me, despite what the VG maps might show). So I left the forest and just renamed it, trying to give it a bit of the 'Norse' feel. Second, it may have been an accident. Back then I C&P'd MOST of what I did, and I may have have C&P'd a piece of the 3rd edition map for another piece of terrain, and a bit of forest was on it, and I just like the way it looked. When I first started mapping, I used to actually do that a lot (if I liked the way something looked, I would just ignore canon, or rather 'add to it'). Its probably a combination of these two things.

I think the name comes from the novels, and the stuff there in Herne's Wood comes from the game, so there seems to have been at least some synergy between the two (why else would different creatives place a Norse-like culture in that region?) Unfortunately, everyone seemed to have ignored Zakhara and the Yakmen.

The reason why it looks like I used the Yakmen map is because it fits perfectly onto the Zakhara map of the same exact area. I mean PERFECTLY, right down to the rivers and that lake in the mountains. The map that came with FoD I have to take as 'in setting' - one drawn by the people in the book, so it is more 'representative' of the region, rather than geographically accurate.

There is some disagreement as to to the region east of Ulgarth, but we worked all of that out a LONG time ago (the original Ulgarth map in SS was done before we had an 'East' {K-T} or a Zakhara, or even a world map, which we now have several of). There are some 'badlands' terrain there, which slowly elevates up into the mountains. Think Thar, or The Stonelands.

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


Edited by - Markustay on 01 Nov 2017 17:28:21
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Markustay
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Posted - 01 Nov 2017 :  17:34:53  Show Profile Send Markustay a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Oh, and somewhat related (since I've been tinkering with all these different concepts and regions/settings)-

Ghuls are genasi. Its the only way all the lore makes sense. You really can't have 'undead elementals' (although I've found at least one in another place). Plus, I found two other subspecies in Corsairs of the Great Sea*; I had always been under the impression there was just one kind of ghul. Now I am seeing them as a culture unto themselves, and since they are NEVER called full genies - just 'cousins', I think spinning them as undead genasi really does make the most sense, mechanically. Not that that has any bearing on the Ue directly, but it is something to bear in mind for all of us, because genasi are far more common post-3e than ever, which means we could have groups of ghuls in Faerūn as well.

EDIT:
I see PF made Ghuls undead Jann. Unfortunately, D&D just got it wrong, and PF continued to the problem. 'Jann' is supposed to be the generic term for genies - a term we have been missing and I've been substituting Steven schend's term 'Dgen' for. I wouldn't need to use 'Dgen' (which I think he meant as an early form of genasi), if D&D had just gotten the damn terminology right from the beginning.

Oh, to be able to go back in time and fix all the craptastic 'spins' those early guys put on mythological and folklore creatures. The European ones they did pretty good with, and in some cases their ingenuity was inspired (like the colored varieties of dragons), but outside of the European folklore they were really our of their element.

EDIT2:
I don't think anyone has done anything (official) with AQ since 2e, right? I think moving forward in 5e, we should repurpose the word 'Jann' to mean genie-kind (as it was intended), OR, have it be a Zakhara-specific term for Genasi. It could even be both - in Zakhara, they would more likely say the specific type of genie (Djinn, Efreet, etc) when speaking about a particular genie, rather than using the generic 'Jann'. However, since genasi are technically Jann (in their culture), but there are no type-specific terms for them, they WOULD use the more generic term 'Jann' while referring to them. Thus Jann becomes both the word for genasi, and their term for genies in general.

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


Edited by - Markustay on 01 Nov 2017 17:50:09
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sleyvas
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Posted - 01 Nov 2017 :  19:54:51  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
just a thought.... Ghul Lords don't use the weave. They draw upon the negative material plane (although it kind of sounds like the shadow weave which didn't exist yet, in canon lore it is still technically the negative material plane).

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas
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