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sleyvas
Great Reader

USA
9738 Posts

Posted - 12 Nov 2020 :  19:56:43  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by TheIriaeban

If worship is currency and the person's soul is the payoff, this Wall sounds like a waste. It would be better that the soul be sent back for another turn, sans memories, so they can try again to have faith. If "he who has the most souls wins", I don't see any of the gods liking this arrangement. Sure, some other god may get that soul but at least I (being a particular god) have a chance to get it, too.



Lol, that's essentially what I was just saying with the "spirits" getting sucked into the lands. Seems like a lot of us are kind of thinking the same thing without even really "coordinating it". I personally like the idea that they get absorbed into the world just like the outer planes eventually absorb souls. In some ways, someone might view the outer planes as stealing magical energy from the prime in the form of souls, and this is one way that some worlds might end up being more high magic.

Of course, the ultimate question kind of comes down to "if souls are energy, where does the source of this actual energy come from on the prime in the first place". That becomes an altogether different question, and its an interesting idea to peruse. For instance, is "soul" energy something that drains into the crystal sphere via the openings to the plane of radiance that is the stars? Does it somehow flow here from "the positive energy plane"? Maybe something else.

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas
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TheIriaeban
Senior Scribe

USA
500 Posts

Posted - 12 Nov 2020 :  20:16:22  Show Profile Send TheIriaeban a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by sleyvas

quote:
Originally posted by TheIriaeban

If worship is currency and the person's soul is the payoff, this Wall sounds like a waste. It would be better that the soul be sent back for another turn, sans memories, so they can try again to have faith. If "he who has the most souls wins", I don't see any of the gods liking this arrangement. Sure, some other god may get that soul but at least I (being a particular god) have a chance to get it, too.



Lol, that's essentially what I was just saying with the "spirits" getting sucked into the lands. Seems like a lot of us are kind of thinking the same thing without even really "coordinating it". I personally like the idea that they get absorbed into the world just like the outer planes eventually absorb souls. In some ways, someone might view the outer planes as stealing magical energy from the prime in the form of souls, and this is one way that some worlds might end up being more high magic.

Of course, the ultimate question kind of comes down to "if souls are energy, where does the source of this actual energy come from on the prime in the first place". That becomes an altogether different question, and its an interesting idea to peruse. For instance, is "soul" energy something that drains into the crystal sphere via the openings to the plane of radiance that is the stars? Does it somehow flow here from "the positive energy plane"? Maybe something else.



If the soul gets absorbed by the land, maybe that is where "place spirits" come from?

If souls are some kind of currency, I would think that a new soul is created by the reproduction of intelligent life. It is life that creates souls and it is the outer planes that "consumes" them.

Oh, I just had a brutal idea. What if these souls do go into this Wall but they can be drawn out as the animating force for magical constructs? What if the Warforged are the recycled souls of the unfaithful?

"Iriaebor is a fine city. So what if you can have violence between merchant groups break out at any moment. Not every city can offer dinner AND a show."

My FR writeups - http://www.mediafire.com/folder/um3liz6tqsf5n/Documents
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sleyvas
Great Reader

USA
9738 Posts

Posted - 12 Nov 2020 :  21:07:57  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by TheIriaeban

quote:
Originally posted by sleyvas

quote:
Originally posted by TheIriaeban

If worship is currency and the person's soul is the payoff, this Wall sounds like a waste. It would be better that the soul be sent back for another turn, sans memories, so they can try again to have faith. If "he who has the most souls wins", I don't see any of the gods liking this arrangement. Sure, some other god may get that soul but at least I (being a particular god) have a chance to get it, too.



Lol, that's essentially what I was just saying with the "spirits" getting sucked into the lands. Seems like a lot of us are kind of thinking the same thing without even really "coordinating it". I personally like the idea that they get absorbed into the world just like the outer planes eventually absorb souls. In some ways, someone might view the outer planes as stealing magical energy from the prime in the form of souls, and this is one way that some worlds might end up being more high magic.

Of course, the ultimate question kind of comes down to "if souls are energy, where does the source of this actual energy come from on the prime in the first place". That becomes an altogether different question, and its an interesting idea to peruse. For instance, is "soul" energy something that drains into the crystal sphere via the openings to the plane of radiance that is the stars? Does it somehow flow here from "the positive energy plane"? Maybe something else.



If the soul gets absorbed by the land, maybe that is where "place spirits" come from?

If souls are some kind of currency, I would think that a new soul is created by the reproduction of intelligent life. It is life that creates souls and it is the outer planes that "consumes" them.

Oh, I just had a brutal idea. What if these souls do go into this Wall but they can be drawn out as the animating force for magical constructs? What if the Warforged are the recycled souls of the unfaithful?




Oh ho ho.... I'm glad we started this discussion, that warforged idea is a neat one. I like where you're going. I hadn't gone THERE exactly, but if you look at my DM's guild product "the complete red book of spell strategy", it notes something about the "constructs" created by the vremyonni of Rashemen. More on that below

I also like the idea that maybe Lantan picked up on this concept while in Abeir, and a lot of their constructs are doing something similar.

Just for discussions sake, here's what I did with the vremyonni

Improved Telthor Construct Familiar
Starting at 2nd level, the wizards of the Vremyonni arcane tradition learn a new ritual. This ritual is called Bind Vremyonni Telthor Construct Familiar (see new rituals section). Your familiar, rather than being a fey animal, is a Telthor of a dead humanoid (usually human, and who died heroically protecting either ancient Raumathor or the country of Rashemen, and many of which may be dead Vremyonni) which takes possession of an item. As such, the items in which you can instill them can be something more in tune with what they may have used as living beings (such as martial weapons, shields, and eventually full suits of armor, etc....).


then the ritual... highlighting some in bold to show how I'm using hit dice to control the use of this spell even though its a ritual.

The rituals in this section are not specific to any one class' spell list. They are learned via feats or class abilities that open you to specific regional types of spellcasters and how they learn their magic. As a result, these spells cannot be learned by outsiders unless they somehow obtain the appropriate feats, class abilities, or through DM adjudication.

Bind Vremyonni Telthor Construct Familiar
1st-level enchantment (ritual)
Casting Time: 1 hour
Range: 10 feet
Components: V,S,M (10 gp worth of charcoal, incense, and herbs that must be consumed by fire in a brass brazier. Also, the caster must have something that belonged to the Telthor Spirit that he is attempting to bind. Also, there must be the item that the Telthor spirit will be bound to. Also, note the special note about hit dice. Only the charcoal, incense, and herbs are lost during this casting)
Duration: Instantaneous
This spell works similar to the spell find familiar, and the character cannot use this spell and find familiar at the same time. There are some important differences though. The main one is that casting this spell requires the spellcaster to give some of their essence to the land. This takes the form of the character expending one of its hit dice for the day. Next, the standard find familiar spell summons the spirts of a celestial, fey, or fiend that is of a selection of certain small beast types that the caster can choose. The find familiar spirit takes on corporeal form. Bind Vremyonni Telthor Construct Familiar spell does not create this corporeal form and thus this spell requires you to provide an item of special construction (essentially, the item should have been one that once held some kind of elemental, fey, or plant spirit). Also, Bind Vremyonni Telthor Construct Familiar summons a special otherworldly fey spirit known as a Telthor (see new monsters) to inhabit the item. Most Telthor spirits are simple animals, but the Vremyonni specifically call upon humanoid spirits with this spell (mostly humans from the Raumathar Empire or the country of Rashemen) that were turned into Telthor upon their death.

The spirit drawn can be coerced into inhabiting a non-magical simple or martial one-handed melee weapon if said melee weapon is composed of some materials that were formerly of elemental, fey, or living plant origin (it should be noted here that the Vremyonni over the last century have taken to secretly mining ironfell from the body of Telos in Vaasa for just this express purpose and have had interesting results in their experimentation). The cost of a simple weapon made of these materials is typically 10 times the cost of a normal weapon of similar make (so a war pick or trident is 50 gp, a battle axe, flail, or shortsword is 100 gp, a longsword, morningstar, or warhammer is 150 gp, and a rapier or scimitar is 250 gp). Silvering the weapon costs the normal 100 gp extra.

This weapon inhabited by the familiar is treated as an animated object similar to a Flying Sword (and exactly like a flying sword if your weapon is a longsword). See the monster manual entry for animated objects for statistics. The weapon also takes on the intelligence, wisdom, and charisma characteristics of the Telthor Spirit inhabiting it (choose a 16, 13, and 11 and allow the caster to determine to which it applies). Typically, higher intelligence Telthors are former Eldritch Knights or wizards, higher wisdom ones are clerical or druid Hathrans or male paladins or rangers, and higher charisma ones are former bards, sorcerers, paladins, rogues, or occasionally fey or spirit shaman pact warlocks. Take this into account if roleplaying this familiar. The type of weapon can also change its other statistics as follows from that of a Flying Sword.
Trident, damage is 1d6+1 piercing
Battle Axe, is treated exactly the same as a Flying Sword
Flail & Warhammer, simply change the damage type to bludgeoning
Morningstar & Warpick, simply change the damage type to piercing
Shortsword/Scimitar/Rapier – change to +4 to hit, but only 1d6+1 slashing
damage
All rules about familiar's apply, except that it can attack, and when the familiar is dismissed it leaves behind the weapon that it had animated. If the familiar drops to 0 hit points, the weapon is destroyed and cannot be reused by a newly summoned familiar (unless of course the weapon is mended with a mending cantrip or similar). Since the familiar's “body” is just a non-magical item, it can be repaired of damage through castings of the mending cantrip (repairing 1d4 hit points of damage per casting).

At Higher Levels. As you cast this spell at higher and higher levels, it requires the spellcaster to sacrifice more of his essence to the land in order to call a more powerful telthor spirit. Mechanically, this means the character must expend hit dice equal to the spell slot level used in order to cast this spell (so casting it as a 5th level spell requires the expenditure of 5 hit dice). Hit dice expended are regained after a long rest as usual.

When you cast this ritual using a spell slot of 2nd level the weapon can be a nonmagical simple or martial Heavy, two-handed melee weapon. In addition, the strength of the telthor increases from 12 to 14. This makes the changes the following from that of a
Flying Sword
Glaive & Halberd, +4 to hit, 1d10+2 slashing, plus having reach
Greataxe +4 to hit, 1d12+2 slashing
Greatsword +4 to hit, 2d6+2 slashing
Maul +4 to hit, 2d6+2 bludgeoning
Pike +4 to hit, 1d10+2 piercing, plus having reach

When you cast this ritual using a spell slot of 3rd level the “weapon” can actually be a combination of two devices working in concert. First would be a non-magical onehanded martial weapon like that made at first level. The second could either be a nonmagical light one-handed martial weapon (i.e. shortsword, scimitar, etc...) OR a nonmagical shield instead (giving a constant +2 shield bonus to the spellcaster's AC).

When you cast this ritual using a spell slot of 4th level you have learned enough to give the telthor much more control over that which it possesses. You can have the telthor possess a suit of non-magical plate armor instead, becoming effectively Animated Armor (see animated objects in the monster manual), which you may arm with whatever weapon or shield that you like (even magical ones), such that you can modify its statistics accordingly.

When you cast this ritual using a spell slot of 5th level, change the Animated Armor's Strength from 14 to 16 (giving an additional +1 to hit and damage) and its Constitution from 13 to 14 (raising its hit points to 39).

When you cast this ritual using a spell slot of 6th level, the suit of armor animated becomes the equivalent of a Helmed Horror. The armor must be non-magical still, but the weapon and/or shield used by the Helmed Horror may be whatever you supply it. You may also choose the spells that it is immune to.

When you cast this ritual using a spell slot of 7th level, the Helmed Horror gains the use of one of your damaging cantrips, and when it uses its action to cast this cantrip, it may make one weapon attack as a bonus action (similar to the war magic feature of the eldritch knight).

When you cast this ritual using a spell slot of 8th level, it gains all previous features from the 7th level version, plus it learns a second damaging cantrip and its strength increases to 20 and constitution increases to 18.

When you cast this ritual using a spell slot of 9th level, it gains all previous features from the 7th & 8th level version, plus it gains the ability to cast Magic Missile and Chromatic Orb up to 3 times per day (as if cast using a 4th level spell slot).

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas
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sleyvas
Great Reader

USA
9738 Posts

Posted - 12 Nov 2020 :  21:39:44  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Also, since we're discussing it (sacrificing life energy to the land and summoning spirits)... here's what I did for durthans for 5e

Call Telthor Spirit
4th-level enchantment (ritual)
Casting Time: 1 hour
Range: 10 feet
Components: V,S,M (10 gp worth of charcoal, incense, and herbs that must be consumed by fire in a brass brazier. Also, note the special note about hit dice.)
Duration: Instantaneous
This spell works similar to the spell find familiar, but this spell does not replace the spellcaster's familiar and the Telthor Spirit summoned is free to attack or defend itself. There are some important differences though. The main one is that casting this spell requires the spellcaster to give some of their essence to the land. This takes the form of the character expending four of its hit dice for the day. Secondly, the Telthor Spirit takes on the Telthor Template (thus, being ghostly in form rather than being a standard beast). The Telthor Spirit called can take on the form of a beast that is no larger than medium and that has a challenge rating of 1/4 or lower (from appendix D of the player's handbook, good examples include boar, mastiff, mule, panther, and wolf, or from the monster manual pony, giant wolf spider, giant weasel, giant rat, giant poisonous snake, giant frog, giant crab, giant badger, giant centipede, blood hawk). Add your proficiency bonus to the beast's AC, attack rolls, and damage rolls, as well as to any saving throws and skills it is proficient in. Its hit point maximum equals its normal hit point maximum or four times your Character Level. As a bonus action each round, you may telepathically order your familiar to perform any action it is capable of. The caster may only control the Spirits called by a single casting of Call Telthor Spirit at any one time.

At Higher Levels. As you cast this spell at higher and higher levels, it requires the spellcaster to sacrifice more of his essence to the land in order to call more telthor spirits. Mechanically, this means the character must expend hit dice equal to the spell slot level used in order to cast this spell (so casting it as a 6th level spell requires the expenditure of 6 hit dice). Hit dice expended are regained after a long rest as usual. When you cast this ritual using a spell slot of 6th lvl or higher, the number of Telthor Spirits that answer the call increases by one for every two slot levels above 4th.


Telthor Template
A beast, humanoid, giant, or monstrosity can become a telthor. Generally these beings are most often beasts, with human heroes following soon behind. Often these heroes return by appearing inside the empty suits of armor and picking up the weapons they wielded in life, and thus many families keep the armor and weapons of the fallen in their households in places of reverence so that they can easily return if the family should need. When a creature becomes a telthor, it retains its statistics except as noted below.
Condition Immunities. Exhaustion, frightened, paralyzed, petrified, prone, restrained
Damage Resistances: bludgeoning, piercing, and slashing from non-magical weapons
Incorporeal Movement. The telthor can move through other creatures and objects as if they were difficult terrain. It takes 5 (1d10) force damage if it ends its turn inside an object.
Bound to the Land. A telthor is tied to the place it guards and is weakened if it moves more than 1 mile from that place. Outside of this area, it takes 1 point of damage every minute. This damage ends immediately if it enters its home area again. Telthors can sense the boundaries of their territory and normally do not leave them except to warn others of danger. Rashemen legends tell of telthors that traveled miles to warn the hathrans of an invasion and then died from the pain of separation before they could be healed.
Native Animal Empathy. Telthors can communicate and empathize with animals of their kind. This gives them a +4 bonus on checks to influence the animal’s attitude and allows the communication of simple concepts and (if the animal is friendly) commands, such as “friend,” “enemy,” “flee,” and “attack.” A humanoid telthor chooses one kind of animal for its empathic bond and gains this ability for that kind of animal only.
Telthor Telepathy. Telthors can communicate with one another telepathically, regardless of language, at a range of 100 feet.

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas
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TheIriaeban
Senior Scribe

USA
500 Posts

Posted - 12 Nov 2020 :  22:00:18  Show Profile Send TheIriaeban a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Nice. There always seemed to be a disconnect for intelligent weapons and constructs. Did the caster put some of themselves in there or, as I have seen in some materials, that an "elemental spirit" is summoned and installed. There are already spells that "duplicate" a caster's mind like simulacrum and the spell improved magic mouth with various and assorted penalties but what about truly permanent items? If some elemental lord started having his subjects just disappear, he might get upset and want to track down what happened to them. But, if the animating spirit is a soul that no one really gives a darn about, you won't have to worry about some mad elemental lord showing up and asking you just what the heck do you think you are doing. Also, since Warforged were being created in numbers, you would think that some other-planar SOMEONE would have gotten curious.

"Iriaebor is a fine city. So what if you can have violence between merchant groups break out at any moment. Not every city can offer dinner AND a show."

My FR writeups - http://www.mediafire.com/folder/um3liz6tqsf5n/Documents

Edited by - TheIriaeban on 12 Nov 2020 22:03:39
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Ayrik
Great Reader

Canada
7303 Posts

Posted - 12 Nov 2020 :  23:20:50  Show Profile Send Ayrik a Private Message  Reply with Quote
"Intelligent" items/weapons can have personalities and desires which are uncooperative, cantankerous, difficult.

Some attempt to mentally dominate and control their users. Some attempt to loyally serve their users. Some lack will or volition entirely. Some are annoyingly stubborn and opinionated. Some are garrulously outspoken. Some only speak when direct commanded to respond.

Psionicists apparently imbue an intelligence into the items they empower. One molded from the image of their own "mental essence", although they can "shape" its personality and thoughts into something a little different, and it can "grow" into something even more different as things happen while time passes.

Wizards apparently get or don't get sentient properties in their enchanted items because of the way the dice roll. And the intelligence itself is entirely determined by the rolling of more dice. To me this suggests they basically have no real control over the results, the "soul/spirit" might be any random thing which was somehow attracted or captured by the enchantments.

Priests apparently get much the same treatment as wizards in this regard. Although I'm inclined to think the "soul/spirit" (whatever it is, wherever it came from) must be influenced, selected, or rejected by the deity whose divine power actually manifests as enchantments.

[/Ayrik]
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Azar
Learned Scribe

103 Posts

Posted - 13 Nov 2020 :  00:59:06  Show Profile Send Azar a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Ayrik

"Intelligent" items/weapons can have personalities and desires which are uncooperative, cantankerous, difficult.

Some attempt to mentally dominate and control their users. Some attempt to loyally serve their users. Some lack will or volition entirely. Some are annoyingly stubborn and opinionated. Some are garrulously outspoken. Some only speak when direct commanded to respond.


In most D&D games I've participated in and/or read about, it seems like there is a dichotomy with core (i.e., basic) intelligent weapons: either they're subservient or they're opinionated/domineering. There is no - at least from what I've gleaned - "the weapon views its wielder as a partner" equivalent result.

Stand with anybody that stands right. Stand with him while he is right and part with him when he goes wrong.
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Kentinal
Great Reader

4502 Posts

Posted - 13 Nov 2020 :  01:34:08  Show Profile Send Kentinal a Private Message  Reply with Quote
If the Item has the same purpose as the current owner there is indeed a partnership. However they also tend to be boring.

There are two things to consider. An Item with a purpose/mission can not change, where as flesh creatures can change their goals. Some of those subservient appearing ones are not going to even contest a wielder doing what their purpose is.


"Small beings can have small wisdom," the dragon said. "And small wise beings are better than small fools. Listen: Wisdom is caring for afterwards."
"Caring for afterwards ...? Ker repeated this without understanding.
"After action, afterwards," the dragon said. "Choose the afterwards first, then the action. Fools choose action first."
"Judgement" copyright 2003 by Elizabeth Moon
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
34137 Posts

Posted - 13 Nov 2020 :  02:55:00  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Azar

quote:
Originally posted by Ayrik

"Intelligent" items/weapons can have personalities and desires which are uncooperative, cantankerous, difficult.

Some attempt to mentally dominate and control their users. Some attempt to loyally serve their users. Some lack will or volition entirely. Some are annoyingly stubborn and opinionated. Some are garrulously outspoken. Some only speak when direct commanded to respond.


In most D&D games I've participated in and/or read about, it seems like there is a dichotomy with core (i.e., basic) intelligent weapons: either they're subservient or they're opinionated/domineering. There is no - at least from what I've gleaned - "the weapon views its wielder as a partner" equivalent result.



I did the partner thing for one of my Hooks, a while back: an animated, intelligent longsword that fought beside its partner.

The idea of an intelligent weapon that is entirely powerless without a wielder has never sat well with me. I can see why that would drive some intelligent weapons to dominate their wielders, but otherwise, it's not a gig I like.

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SaMoCon
Learned Scribe

USA
291 Posts

Posted - 14 Nov 2020 :  21:26:08  Show Profile Send SaMoCon a Private Message  Reply with Quote
For intelligent magic items, the grand daddy is the One Ring from "Lord of the Rings" as it was described as having a will of its own to make things happen. That colored everything that followed. Even taking the fact that the One Ring was an evil item that was part of an evil demigod, I agree with Wooly that intelligent items have an alien perspective to that assumed by players for characters. The drives for its emotions are abstracts & perversions of sapient creatures showing the lack of biological impetus and experiential refinement for endearments, rages, and melancholia. Here we have an artificial intelligence, its worldly knowledge is drastically limited and much of the means with which it can learn more lies outside of its control; moreover, we do not have clear knowledge about its lucidity or cognizance when it is outside the possession of a wielder.

A great analogy for this is a heroin addict that craves each hit and has to deal with the drug pushers for each limited batch that always comes with a price. What would a junkie do to secure that next hit? Debase itself for the currency? Try to abstain knowing that temptation & falling off the wagon is ever present? Seizing control of the source and using until it is all used up? This dynamic is not necessarily adversarial but the potential for hostile conflict grows if the drug dealer becomes pushy with frequent demands or grows negligent in satisfying the wants of the addict. The relationship between the two is inherently unequal so any abuses will be even more aggravating for the disenfranchised junkie.

Rather than being campy items like the owl construct from the first "Clash of the Titans" film, these items would be more like Frankenstein's monster from "Frankenstein" struggling with its identity, the titular Pinocchio who wants to be more than a puppet, and the fragmented sword Saika/Mother in "Durarara" that obsessively loves all humanity. The purposes which were instilled in each one of these examples (being the vessel of an esteemed mentor, becoming a child to be cared for, protecting its wielder as a trustworthy blade) became eclipsed and forgotten by the surging desires of these objects. These are tragic figures who despair because they dared to hope and because they are intelligent they leave the paths their creators envisioned when fabricating them. And what do intelligent people do when barriers are put in their way?

...

Are we off topic or what?

Yeah, shame about the wall. I liked it because it was a perfect alternative to the "heaven/hell" concept that a lot of players have and it short-circuits the rebelling-against-authority attitude that I encounter in most new players. There is something about this finality that makes PC death more than an inconvenience for them - I don't know, maybe it taps into their own unconscious notions of their mortality. That said, it doesn't affect me because I have stopped buying FR products since they have done nothing to enhance my game play.

Make the best use of the system that's there, then modify the mechanics that don't allow you to have the fun you are looking for.
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Zeromaru X
Master of Realmslore

Colombia
1791 Posts

Posted - 15 Nov 2020 :  00:52:39  Show Profile Send Zeromaru X a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by SaMoCon


Yeah, shame about the wall. I liked it because it was a perfect alternative to the "heaven/hell" concept that a lot of players have and it short-circuits the rebelling-against-authority attitude that I encounter in most new players. There is something about this finality that makes PC death more than an inconvenience for them - I don't know, maybe it taps into their own unconscious notions of their mortality. That said, it doesn't affect me because I have stopped buying FR products since they have done nothing to enhance my game play.



In my case, I have a very different opinion about the Wall. It doesn't only feels as if the designers wanted to force their religious ideologies to their clients, but also their design ideas. "If you didn't like the gods we designed for this game, then we are going to inconvenience you". And, as you point it, hearkens back to the "DM vs players" vibe I didn't like from AD&D.

It also present some inconveniences in-universe, making the all good gods seem as hypocrites who only care for themselves...

But well, the Wall was destroyed in my Realms since before 5e...

Long ago, in the distant past, they fell into decay. The philosopher’s path... The river of glory... Even the saints resting in the darkness rise up without response and block the way...
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George Krashos
Master of Realmslore

Australia
6004 Posts

Posted - 15 Nov 2020 :  00:55:15  Show Profile Send George Krashos a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I'm with Zeromaru. Just because some RW religions like the idea of salvation/sin and purgatory doesn't mean those concepts should feature in the Realms. Such uninspired writing and design.

-- George Krashos

"Because only we, contrary to the barbarians, never count the enemy in battle." -- Aeschylus
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Ayrik
Great Reader

Canada
7303 Posts

Posted - 15 Nov 2020 :  01:33:43  Show Profile Send Ayrik a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by George Krashos

I'm with Zeromaru. Just because some RW religions like the idea of salvation/sin and purgatory doesn't mean those concepts should feature in the Realms. Such uninspired writing and design.

Those ideas are also the backbone of Gygax's Outer Planes, along with Planescape and most of the other paradigms which followed.

"Upper Planes" filled with goodness, celestials, and nice stuff.
"Lower Planes" filled with evilness, fiends, and their eternally damned victims.

It makes little sense for the Realms to be structured around these ideas if the Realms is isolated from RW religious inspirations.

It makes more sense for the Realms to be structured around these ideas if they are fundamental building blocks of the cosmos. (Which appears to be why monster alignments, paladins, priests, and alignment-based magics exist.)

[/Ayrik]

Edited by - Ayrik on 15 Nov 2020 01:35:40
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
34137 Posts

Posted - 15 Nov 2020 :  03:08:51  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I once suggested that the Wall had another purpose... Keep in mind, this is just a thought I had, utterly unsupported by anything in Realmslore.

But... What if the Wall wasn't there as a punishment? What if the slow dissolution of souls provided energy/material that was directed elsewhere?

My original idea was inspired, IIRC, by a discussion of Tharizdun or something like him. What if his imprisonment required a constant source of energy? As the Faithless couldn't go to any deity's realm, why not use them for that source of power?

Or maybe you tweak the history of the Wall just a bit, and go with Krash's Lord of the End of Everything write-up -- maybe Jergal was behind the creation of the Wall (directly or indirectly) and he's siphoning that energy off in some other direction, entirely unnoticed...

Again, nothing in canon Realmslore even implies either of these things might be the case. It's just another case of me taking some existing thing and rotating it 90 degrees.

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Azar
Learned Scribe

103 Posts

Posted - 15 Nov 2020 :  04:30:46  Show Profile Send Azar a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Kentinal

If the Item has the same purpose as the current owner there is indeed a partnership. However they also tend to be boring.

There are two things to consider. An Item with a purpose/mission can not change, where as flesh creatures can change their goals. Some of those subservient appearing ones are not going to even contest a wielder doing what their purpose is.





Theoretically speaking, if an Intelligent item with a purpose is taken to a place where its purpose is inapplicable/nonexistent (e.g., a glaive that wants to "vanquish evil" is transported to Elysium), would it become dormant?

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by Azar

quote:
Originally posted by Ayrik

"Intelligent" items/weapons can have personalities and desires which are uncooperative, cantankerous, difficult.

Some attempt to mentally dominate and control their users. Some attempt to loyally serve their users. Some lack will or volition entirely. Some are annoyingly stubborn and opinionated. Some are garrulously outspoken. Some only speak when direct commanded to respond.


In most D&D games I've participated in and/or read about, it seems like there is a dichotomy with core (i.e., basic) intelligent weapons: either they're subservient or they're opinionated/domineering. There is no - at least from what I've gleaned - "the weapon views its wielder as a partner" equivalent result.



I did the partner thing for one of my Hooks, a while back: an animated, intelligent longsword that fought beside its partner.

The idea of an intelligent weapon that is entirely powerless without a wielder has never sat well with me. I can see why that would drive some intelligent weapons to dominate their wielders, but otherwise, it's not a gig I like.



You've given me some nuggets to munch on. For my upcoming game, I may have to create an Intelligent weapon that is looking for an equal instead of a servant or a master. I'm presently thinking that this will result in the classic "spirit trapped in the sword" scenario.

Stand with anybody that stands right. Stand with him while he is right and part with him when he goes wrong.
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Kentinal
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4502 Posts

Posted - 15 Nov 2020 :  04:37:58  Show Profile Send Kentinal a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Azar

quote:
Originally posted by Kentinal

If the Item has the same purpose as the current owner there is indeed a partnership. However they also tend to be boring.

There are two things to consider. An Item with a purpose/mission can not change, where as flesh creatures can change their goals. Some of those subservient appearing ones are not going to even contest a wielder doing what their purpose is.





Theoretically speaking, if an Intelligent item with a purpose is taken to a place where its purpose is inapplicable/nonexistent (e.g., a glaive that wants to "vanquish evil" is transported to Elysium), would it become dormant?





An interesting question. My best guess would be the item would try to either find some evil there or do its best to get to a place where there is evil. I do not see any reason the item would go dormant even if there is no evil it can find, it would still be searching for it.
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CorellonsDevout
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USA
2551 Posts

Posted - 15 Nov 2020 :  04:49:33  Show Profile Send CorellonsDevout a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by George Krashos

I'm with Zeromaru. Just because some RW religions like the idea of salvation/sin and purgatory doesn't mean those concepts should feature in the Realms. Such uninspired writing and design.

-- George Krashos



Well, I wouldn't really compare it to heaven/hell and purgatory. Sure, some of the planes are very "heaven" or "hell" like (and you do have the Nine Hells, of course), and, depending on the god you follow, the afterlife you go to is going to be more "heavenly" or "hellish". This makes senses for something like the Realms. I'm glad there is an afterlife in the Realms. And it is not as the though the average Faerunian is going to be super religious (not in the way we think of the term), being polytheistic and paying homage to.various deities.

That said, I've never been a fan of the Wall. I think the Faithless should go to the plane bested suited to them, or serve some sort of penance (not necessarily punishment, just working in the City of Judgement for a time or something).

@Zeromaru: players and DMs are equally guilty of projecting stuff like that (atheists hating FR gods, even though it's fantasy, and on the flip side, religious folks either wanting to worship a RW religious figure in the game, or being offended there are fictional deities). Now, WotC seems to be going in the opposite direction they had been--pushing the gods away, and giving "options" for people who want to play a cleric or paladin, but don't want a god. This makes little sense to me, and is just as bothersome. I agree that the Wall sucks, and if they get rid of it, great, but I want an actual explanation. I've never really understood the hate people have for the FR gods (other than the Wall), regardless of their real world beliefs (or non beliefs). Dragons, magic, and other mythical beings are okay, but gods aren't? Not accusing you personally of doing this, but this seems to be a weird dichotomy that comes up when people discuss the gods of the Realms. Religion works great in fantasy, imho. But, I totally understand the dislike for the Wall.

Sweet water and light laughter

Edited by - CorellonsDevout on 15 Nov 2020 05:14:43
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CorellonsDevout
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USA
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Posted - 15 Nov 2020 :  05:12:01  Show Profile Send CorellonsDevout a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Oh, I just thought of something, though I am not sure how much merit it has. The Wall was originally created by Myrkul, right? And Kelemvor tried to get rid of it, but wasn't allowed. I forgot why/who stopped him, but what if it was kept around (until recently, apparently) by Ao, as a way to keep balance? Gods benefit from having the souls of their followers in their realms as petitioners, and but since their power became more tied to worship, Ao didn't want then getting the "free souls" of those who had never had a patron deity. So instead of a faithless going where he was best suited, he got the Wall, and the Wall is as much a punishment to the gods themselves as it is to those who refuse to worship them?

Sweet water and light laughter
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Zeromaru X
Master of Realmslore

Colombia
1791 Posts

Posted - 15 Nov 2020 :  05:42:53  Show Profile Send Zeromaru X a Private Message  Reply with Quote
My only problem with FR gods are the Wall, and Mystra Sue and Cyric Stu. Specially Cyric Stu

But I really like mythologies, so I enjoy the FR gods. But I also like coherence, and really the Wall is really incoherent within Realmslore. You don't need to actually punish "unbelievers" in a pantheistic/polytheistic religion. That's a Christian concept. Just look to Asian religions to see how that works...

Long ago, in the distant past, they fell into decay. The philosopher’s path... The river of glory... Even the saints resting in the darkness rise up without response and block the way...

Edited by - Zeromaru X on 15 Nov 2020 05:44:03
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Zeromaru X
Master of Realmslore

Colombia
1791 Posts

Posted - 15 Nov 2020 :  05:45:50  Show Profile Send Zeromaru X a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by CorellonsDevout

Oh, I just thought of something, though I am not sure how much merit it has. The Wall was originally created by Myrkul, right? And Kelemvor tried to get rid of it, but wasn't allowed. I forgot why/who stopped him, but what if it was kept around (until recently, apparently) by Ao, as a way to keep balance? Gods benefit from having the souls of their followers in their realms as petitioners, and but since their power became more tied to worship, Ao didn't want then getting the "free souls" of those who had never had a patron deity. So instead of a faithless going where he was best suited, he got the Wall, and the Wall is as much a punishment to the gods themselves as it is to those who refuse to worship them?



This only works if we acknowledge Ao is an active force of Evil in the cosmos.

Long ago, in the distant past, they fell into decay. The philosopher’s path... The river of glory... Even the saints resting in the darkness rise up without response and block the way...
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
34137 Posts

Posted - 15 Nov 2020 :  06:05:57  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
If Myrkul created the Wall, what happened to Faithless when Jergal was in charge?

I find myself favoring my new idea that Jergal was pulling some shenanigans with souls, and that the whole "Myrkul did it!" was a bit of PR that Jergal had no issue with.

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Ayrik
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Canada
7303 Posts

Posted - 15 Nov 2020 :  07:01:52  Show Profile Send Ayrik a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Perhaps faithless/unaligned souls simply reincarnated back to the Realms. Another lifetime to discover or choose an eternal affinity.

[/Ayrik]
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Demzer
Senior Scribe

756 Posts

Posted - 15 Nov 2020 :  15:39:48  Show Profile Send Demzer a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

If Myrkul created the Wall, what happened to Faithless when Jergal was in charge?

I find myself favoring my new idea that Jergal was pulling some shenanigans with souls, and that the whole "Myrkul did it!" was a bit of PR that Jergal had no issue with.



Considering that most human "faithlessness" happened during Jergal's time (Imaskar and Netheril, with the active rejection of worship of the intermediate to upper echelons of both societies), I agree with this.

Jergal was probably just using (whatever that means) all unclaimed souls and that's why from splitting his power we got two greater and an intermediate power and he still managed to stay at demigod level and just ... kind of hang around in the background?

The Wall thus acted as a scary punishment for few mortals and a check on the power of the god of the dead.
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Zeromaru X
Master of Realmslore

Colombia
1791 Posts

Posted - 15 Nov 2020 :  19:33:14  Show Profile Send Zeromaru X a Private Message  Reply with Quote
But that still makes the Wall just a punishment of an evil god to faithless mortals rather than some thing necessary for the balance of the universe. And so, make the supposed gods of good a bunch of hypocrites.

Long ago, in the distant past, they fell into decay. The philosopher’s path... The river of glory... Even the saints resting in the darkness rise up without response and block the way...

Edited by - Zeromaru X on 15 Nov 2020 19:34:07
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Ayrik
Great Reader

Canada
7303 Posts

Posted - 15 Nov 2020 :  21:26:37  Show Profile Send Ayrik a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Some pretty strong accusations in this context.

The Wall might be a necessary unpleasantness to help guide wayward souls. Sometimes parents have to punish their wayward children, demotivate unacceptable behaviour, motivate acceptable behaviour, but that doesn't make the parents "evil" and it doesn't make them "hypocrites".

The Wall does seem to be an unnecessary cruelty. Since the cosmos already sorts souls out to whatever eternal fates they deserve. The gods impose the Wall - or they at least permit it to continue existing, continue growing in power - and they don't attempt to explain why this is necessary (beyond the obvious result of making them more powerful). This suggests to me that while they may not be "evil" and may not be "hypocrites", they are "cruel" or they are "incompetent". They are an extreme example of bad parents. They don't correct bad behaviours, they don't encourage or stimulate good behaviours, they just drop a nuke on every little ant which strays from the path.

[/Ayrik]
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