Candlekeep Forum
Candlekeep Forum
Home | Profile | Register | Active Topics | Active Polls | Members | Private Messages | Search | FAQ
Username:
Password:
Save Password
Forgot your Password?

 All Forums
 Realmslore
 Chamber of Sages
 Questions for Ed Greenwood (2005)
 New Topic  Topic Locked
 Printer Friendly
Previous Page | Next Page
Author Previous Topic Topic Next Topic
Page: of 84

A Gavel
Seeker

USA
53 Posts

Posted - 15 Mar 2005 :  15:42:38  Show Profile  Visit A Gavel's Homepage Send A Gavel a Private Message
One historical note here:

As a judge (and before that, practicing law), I’m something of a student of judicial and police enforcement history. Jerry’s correct about Peel, but I can see what Ed did here. He probably took similar classes or consulted similar sources as I did, all those years ago in college (for both of us), and the scholarly debate about how much Sir Robert PEEL’s public constabulary was organizationally modeled on the still-operating ‘secret service’ established by Sir Robert CECIL, Elizabeth the First’s “security lord,” and mentally confused one with the other.

Getting old, Ed, getting old, happens to all of us.

However, Jerry, Ed’s point very much stands. Elizabeth DID establish a security force.

And like The Hooded One, I’m afraid (with respect) I find some of your arguments to Ed to be rather simplistic “but I want things to be THIS way, not the way you’re telling me they are.” As I have to tell rather a lot of people who appear before me in court: Life and law are the way they are, not the way we want them to be.
Go to Top of Page

Foxhelm
Senior Scribe

Canada
592 Posts

Posted - 15 Mar 2005 :  16:05:20  Show Profile  Click to see Foxhelm's MSN Messenger address  Send Foxhelm a Yahoo! Message Send Foxhelm a Private Message
These last arguements reminds me of the interview with George Lucas on 60 minutes last Sunday.

Basically, Lucas was discussing his reaction to the critics. He said, (Paraphrasing). "It's like painting a house white. Then have a neighbour come up and saying that the house would look better as a green house. It might indeed look better as a green house, but I wanted to paint a white house. It's the way that I wanted to do it."

Ed wants a white house and Jerryd wants a green house. But the Cannon Realms is basically Ed's house. So it's white. Now Jerryd can have an near identical house that he can paint green (A homebrew version of the Realms).

Ed also has the help of extra maintaince people helping to keep his house in a constant state of new. Jerryd has to do up keep basically by himself or with the left over servaces of the workers in Ed's house.

That's the way things are.

Now a question I have so far:

Why doesn't any of the Sorcerer/Wizard characters that Ed has created have Familiars? Is there a great complex reason for this? Do they have secret or unique Familars?

Ed Greenwood! The Solution... and Cause of all the Realms Problems!
Go to Top of Page

Melfius
Senior Scribe

USA
516 Posts

Posted - 15 Mar 2005 :  18:05:49  Show Profile  Visit Melfius's Homepage  Send Melfius an AOL message Send Melfius a Private Message
Actually, I think that in this instance, it is a case of saying that Ed's children shouldn't have brown hair. In writing, things seldom come out as the author originally intended. You find that, during the writing process, people/places/things have a tendancy to take on a life of their own, and you find yourself making changes based on what you see creating itself on paper.

Writing is not so much a creative process as it is a revealing process. You don't so much create a story as you do reveal something that pretty much creates itself. Like being a parent, you can decide to have a child, but as to what the child becomes, well as any parent can tell you, what happens - happens. Yes, you can try and steer the child towards being a good, prductive member of society, but ultimately it's the child who gets the final say. Nobody wants to create a serial killer. But, of course, it seems natural for people to say "Blame the Parents"

And for the neighbors to argue with you about what you have brought forth into this world, that's just silly.

Melfius, Pixie-Priest of Puck - Head Chef, The Faerie Kitchen, Candlekeep Inn
"What's in his pockets, besides me?"
Read a tale of my earlier days! - Happiness Comes in Small Packages

Edited by - Melfius on 15 Mar 2005 18:08:05
Go to Top of Page

The Hooded One
Lady Herald of Realmslore

5043 Posts

Posted - 16 Mar 2005 :  01:09:24  Show Profile  Visit The Hooded One's Homepage Send The Hooded One a Private Message
Hello, all. To A Gavel, Jerryd, and all scribes, Ed says this:
Re. the Sir Roberts (Peel and Cecil), A Gavel has it right; that's exactly what I did. Thanks for the catch, Gavel! And to Jerryd and other scribes reading this thread, I'm sorry I led you astray. Yup, getting old, indeed. :{


Then, Ed replies to MrH about so harshly eliminating Shandril Shessair in HAND OF FIRE:



You’re welcome, MrH, and I love crafting them. Shandril Shessair’s demise was decided for me (“Wrap the Shandril trilogy with a final book in which you kill her off” is a very close paraphrase of what was said to me, way back when) and I agreed to do it because - - as with Azoun IV - - if anyone’s going to write books in which major characters of mine die, I want to be doing the writing. I believe the design decision was that Shandril was too powerful to write other ‘big event’ fiction set in the Realms without accounting for why she didn’t take part, or why important evil power groups that had been hell-bent on capturing or destroying her simply dropped their pursuit to go and do whatever else the author of the book at hand needed them to do (the old Marvel Comics problem of “Why don’t the Fantastic Four take care of this? Or the Avengers? Or the X-Men?” - - that forced so many writers to ‘explain what those supergroups are busy doing,’ so your lesser-power character, like Spiderman, has to save the day).
I agree that the ending felt rotten. It was indeed supposed to be a downer, though I wrote too long a book as usual, and it ended up more abrupt than it should have been.
Mystra DID bring Shandril back, “somehow.” Just not as the walking target that she’d been since the moment her spellfire manifested - - which was all the life she could ever expect. She wasn’t “the suicidal type,” she was overwhelmed with grief because she thought Narm had been killed, and his love (powerless, indecisive shmuck that he was - - deliberate on my part, because I didn’t want a “hero with beautiful female sidekick”) was all she had to cling to, in life. It wasn’t easy to write, and I didn’t want to write it, but even less did I want to read someone else’s version of “killing off Shandril.”
Nor is her tale COMPLETELY done . . .



Oooh. Now THAT’S a hint to clutch and keep safe, and pull out to fondle and warm you on cold nights! THO here, signing off for now!
Go to Top of Page

Melfius
Senior Scribe

USA
516 Posts

Posted - 16 Mar 2005 :  01:46:46  Show Profile  Visit Melfius's Homepage  Send Melfius an AOL message Send Melfius a Private Message
Shandril LIVES?!?

YAY!!!!!!!!!!!

Now Ed has gone and got me all happy now!

Melfius, Pixie-Priest of Puck - Head Chef, The Faerie Kitchen, Candlekeep Inn
"What's in his pockets, besides me?"
Read a tale of my earlier days! - Happiness Comes in Small Packages
Go to Top of Page

Crust
Learned Scribe

USA
273 Posts

Posted - 16 Mar 2005 :  03:21:07  Show Profile  Visit Crust's Homepage  Send Crust an AOL message Send Crust a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by The Hooded One


I dispute your judgement of Vangey as a “deluded villain.” HE thinks he’s “doing right,” and who’s to say he’s wrong? The fact that he’s not a one-dimensional hero seems to ruin him for you, but I see Ed’s depiction of him as a man wrestling with trying to impose his will on the world, and settling for the “end justifying the means,” as far more interesting than plain black and white (which you stated your preference for in an earlier post). In short, Vangey is a stronger character for it, and the campaign possibilities more fascinating.




Khelben is the same way in part. I can't help but think of Karla from the Lodoss series. She seems like a villain, but she's just trying to protect Lodoss, whatever the cost.

"That's right, hurl back views that force ye to think by name-calling - 'tis the grand old tradition, let it not down! Anything to keep from having to think, or - Mystra forfend - change thy own views!"

Narnra glowered at her father. "Just how am I to learn how to think? By being taught by you?"

"Some folk in the Realms would give their lives for the chance to learn at my feet," Elminster said mildly. "Several already have."

~from Elminster's Daughter, Ed Greenwood
Go to Top of Page

Rinonalyrna Fathomlin
Great Reader

USA
7106 Posts

Posted - 16 Mar 2005 :  03:52:03  Show Profile  Visit Rinonalyrna Fathomlin's Homepage Send Rinonalyrna Fathomlin a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by The Hooded One

I agree that the ending felt rotten. It was indeed supposed to be a downer, though I wrote too long a book as usual, and it ended up more abrupt than it should have been.





I just want to say that while Shandril's death was rather abrupt, I felt it was sensitively handled, and probably the best part of Hand of Fire. I felt the character motivations were realistic, and it seemed that Shandril was already headed "downhill" emotionally when she couldn't save that one Harper (I believe she left a burning handprint--the "hand of fire"--on his skin from her failed attempt to heal him?).

"Instead of asking why we sleep, it might make sense to ask why we wake. Perchance we live to dream. From that perspective, the sea of troubles we navigate in the workaday world might be the price we pay for admission to another night in the world of dreams."
--Richard Greene (letter to Time)
Go to Top of Page

Dargoth
Great Reader

Australia
4569 Posts

Posted - 16 Mar 2005 :  11:03:27  Show Profile  Visit Dargoth's Homepage Send Dargoth a Private Message
A question for Ed with regard to events in Cormyr/Beyond the High road and The return of the Arch Wizards series

Whats the relationship like between Cormyr and the elven nations (Ie Evereska, Evermeet and the remaining elven settlements in the Dalelands)in the post Azouns IV death and the destruction of Tilverton era? both of them being events where elves did substantial damage to Cormyr

Particular does Alusair hold a grudge against the elves over her fathers death?

Do the people of Cormyr in genera; have a negative view of Elves?




“I am the King of Rome, and above grammar”

Emperor Sigismund

"Its good to be the King!"

Mel Brooks
Go to Top of Page

Faraer
Great Reader

3302 Posts

Posted - 16 Mar 2005 :  20:38:46  Show Profile  Visit Faraer's Homepage Send Faraer a Private Message
Re Shandril: Ah, that version of the Realms in which only a few 'important' things go on at once, there are only a limited number of 'important' actors, everyone 'important' knows everything 'important' going on across Faerûn, everyone has only one concern at a time (no walking and chewing gum), things finish abruptly and have no continued effects... Did the books department actually think like that, or did they think that readers would, and hence be bemused by Shandril's apparent continued existence in the 'current' Realms?
Go to Top of Page

Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
30340 Posts

Posted - 16 Mar 2005 :  23:09:29  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Dargoth

Particular does Alusair hold a grudge against the elves over her fathers death?

Do the people of Cormyr in genera; have a negative view of Elves?




I wouldn't imagine so, for either case...

Alusair is a smart lady, and it's not like this was an elven plot -- it was the actions of one former elf. And how many people know that the Devil Dragon was formerly an elf?

Candlekeep Forums Moderator

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

Editor and scribe for The Candlekeep Compendium

I am the Giant Space Hamster of Ill Omen!
Go to Top of Page

The Hooded One
Lady Herald of Realmslore

5043 Posts

Posted - 17 Mar 2005 :  01:59:21  Show Profile  Visit The Hooded One's Homepage Send The Hooded One a Private Message
Hello, all. Ed makes reply to Haman:



MageFairs - - what fun! Your chief sources of published Realmslore on these events are indeed the sources you’re already familiar with: MAGIC OF FAERUN and my short story “Elminster At the MageFair,” originally published in REALMS OF VALOR and recently reprinted in BEST OF THE REALMS Volume 1. Yes, they make wonderful roleplaying settings.
Let’s delve into your questions:
First, there are “mage fairs” and there is THE annual MageFair. I’m not going to discuss the small local ones, because they vary tremendously, are indeed essentially like our real-world flea markets and gaming conventions (as your questions lead me to believe you already see them as), and you can tailor their sizes, rules, and essential nature to whatever you want them to be for your campaign needs. What’s in the MAGIC OF FAERUN covers them forwards, backwards, and sideways for those who need 3e rules.
Many realms and cities ban the small local magical fairs, but I’m not aware of anyone banning MageFairs. Such bans would be meaningless fiction anyway, because the wizards who hold them pay no attention to the decrees of kings. MageFairs (the big annual sort) are never held in cities or populated areas anyway, but only in remote wilderlands (often inhospitable rock badlands, deserts, or the like), as they can be dangerous to non-magical folk - - and said folk knowing the precise time and location of a great arcane gathering might well be dangerous to the wizards and sorcerers taking part.
In general, those who ban the small local fairs do so because their rule is insecure and they fear wizards entering “their” territory, or wreaking destruction there - - or they fear someone selling magic or hiring their spellcasting services out to a foe or rival, who will then challenge their rule. In rarer cases (Rashemen and Thay are examples, and in elder days, Athalantar would have been, too), mage fairs aren’t wanted because the rulers or inhabitants of a land want themselves to be the only users of magic in it; no groups or gatherings of magically-powerful outlanders are welcome.
THE MageFair moves from place to place, the locale for any given year clearly shown (with location; usually the dream is of “soaring over anything” from one’s sleep location to the spot) to the everchanging Council who run them by mind-visions sent by Azuth (who also ‘chooses’ every year’s Council, revealing the Council members to each other in dreams). No one except the Chosen, Azuth and Mystra and their servants, and the Council know the location of an annual MageFair until three mornings beforehand. All other arcane spellcasters are reminded in dreams of the impending event, and passwords (not always the same one for everyone) are ‘mind-whispered’ to them. To get in, one must travel to outside the wards of a MageFair (attempts to translocate past them will result in severe mind-pain, and failure of the magic), give the password to a sentinel-mage, and demonstrate magical ability to that sentinel by casting (any) spell (of the attendee’s choice).
Anyone who just tries to burst through the wards should be warned that unless a sentinel lets them through - - something that happens invisibly, silently, and without apparent spellcasting - - or they happen to be a Chosen or other powerful servant of Azuth or Mystra ‘attuned to the Weave’ [such individuals can ‘step around’ the wards, and bring companions who lack such powers along with them, unharmed] the wards will act as a Prismatic Wall spell, plus several additional ‘inner curtain’ effects if the prismatic effects are breached. Spells sent against the wards usually encounter spell reflection. (The wards have all these fearsome effects in one direction only: from outside to inside. They don’t even seem to exist, to creatures and spells moving from inside to outside.)
The Council, usually about a dozen strong and usually including at least two experienced members (who’ve been on previous Councils), are responsible for checking and securing the site, casting the wards (which Azuth channels through them, achieving magical defenses far stronger than they could cast unaided, and somewhat mysterious to everyone - - yes, including Council members - - in structure if not in workings; everyone knows what they do, but it’s almost impossible to breach or dispel them, because Azuth changes their nature every year), and arranging the schedule, any trials or demonstrations, who will be allowed as a vendor and precisely what they’ll be allowed to sell, and so on. Azuth always rewards Council members (usually with new spells placed in their spellbooks) afterwards, so very few of them worry about any costs in time or coin of these preparations.
MageFairs have conduct rules and traditions (events, such as spell-hurling duels, that are always held), but their chief value is in socialization: mastering arcane spells, like writing, is an essentially lonely occupation, and MageFairs provide a way for wizards and sorcerers to get to know each other. Many of them, despite legendary feuds and the arrogance and eccentricity exhibited by so many wizards and sorcerers, soon come to look upon MageFairs as high points of their year, where they get to see old friends (in some cases, make trades, do business, get drunk, or even make love with old friends). Hmmm, rather like GenCon, though there were no GenCons (or D&D, for that matter) when I created MageFairs. :}
Yes, most of the ‘big names’ make at least a brief appearance, even if heavily disguised or by ‘riding the eyes’ (by spell, from afar) of agents who attend for them. They simply don’t want to be ‘out of the loop’ as much as they will be if they miss MageFair after MageFair. Yes, there are lectures and demonstrations. No, there are no autograph booths, though a certain sort of wizard (usually the short, pompous types who never go adventuring, but who make a good living selling blank spellbooks, spell inks, and potions to others) exchanges what can only be described as business cards. Most of the time they’re gab-and-chatter-fests. Friends of the Council members work frantically making meals and dispensing drinkables for three days and nights, and then collapse from exhaustion, to be magically whisked back to their homes, and made much richer for their efforts.
Azuth and Mystra consider MageFairs vital in keeping magic-use healthy, strong, and ever-growing, and even the wizards who hate crowds and especially detest other wizards admit that MageFairs are the best way to hear the news, spread warnings (especially of lands that have passed laws affecting spell use, but also of wild magic, unleashed monsters, and other perils). They also gather many arcane spellcasters together for Azuth and Mystra (and their servants) to observe and judge and impart things swiftly to. Would-be troublemakers are warned that servants of those two deities, as well as the visible sentinel-mages, watch events closely. One MIGHT get away with deftly and swiftly murdering a fellow wizard, but attempts to release a spreading spell, poisonous gas or dust, germs, or other means of affecting many arcane spellcasters will be noticed and foiled - - and the perpetrators shapechanged into something helpless for a decade or so.
As for tales of colourful events at MageFairs: I have hundreds, but let me leave you with just one (now prevented by the altered wards, which govern the area within them as well as being an outer sphere of defense): a clever ‘virus illusion’ passed from person to person by touch or eye contact, that swapped illusory faces of everyone ‘in the virus,’ randomly and every third breath drawn by the caster. This led to many moments of shock and horror as wizards discovered themselves apparently in bed with someone other than their expected partner, and so on. It went on and on, most disconcertingly, and the caster then started to ‘mix in’ monster likenesses, which led to several spell-attacks - - and an angry Azuth personally appearing to set things right.
Oh, all right, TWO stories: an attempt to steal a wand with a snatch-from-afar spell that was twisted by a defensive spell akin to a mantle into an unintended-by-anyone effect that snatched random garments off wizards, OR teleported them straight up, from twenty to eighty feet aloft, to hover motionless and then teleport right back to their starting-points. This, too, went on and on, with progressively barer mages popping up into the sky here, there, and everywhere - - until Mystra ended it by altering the wards to deny all translocation spells but create a ‘fly field,’ wherein everyone could fly, and hurling several magic items into their midst, causing a wild rumble-and-chase game to occur.
Most of the other tales I could tell involve long explanations of why certain events triggered feuds, so . . . you’ll just have to wait for books and short stories as yet unwritten, I guess.
I hope this has been of help.



So saith Ed. I remember Torm asking Elminster if he could go to a MageFair dressed in a toad suit, just to save time.
love to all,
THO
Go to Top of Page

George Krashos
Master of Realmslore

Australia
4923 Posts

Posted - 17 Mar 2005 :  02:32:35  Show Profile Send George Krashos a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by The Hooded One
So saith Ed. I remember Torm asking Elminster if he could go to a MageFair dressed in a toad suit, just to save time.
love to all,
THO






THO, is "Torm" as cheeky and entertaining IRL, or does the roleplaying let him out of his shell somewhat?

-- George Krashos

"Because only we, contrary to the barbarians, never count the enemy in battle." -- Aeschylus
Go to Top of Page

Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
30340 Posts

Posted - 17 Mar 2005 :  03:51:09  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by George Krashos

quote:
Originally posted by The Hooded One
So saith Ed. I remember Torm asking Elminster if he could go to a MageFair dressed in a toad suit, just to save time.
love to all,
THO






THO, is "Torm" as cheeky and entertaining IRL, or does the roleplaying let him out of his shell somewhat?

-- George Krashos




If he is, then I should like to meet him!

Candlekeep Forums Moderator

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

Editor and scribe for The Candlekeep Compendium

I am the Giant Space Hamster of Ill Omen!
Go to Top of Page

Dargoth
Great Reader

Australia
4569 Posts

Posted - 17 Mar 2005 :  06:09:59  Show Profile  Visit Dargoth's Homepage Send Dargoth a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by George Krashos

quote:
Originally posted by The Hooded One
So saith Ed. I remember Torm asking Elminster if he could go to a MageFair dressed in a toad suit, just to save time.
love to all,
THO






THO, is "Torm" as cheeky and entertaining IRL, or does the roleplaying let him out of his shell somewhat?

-- George Krashos




Ive got the THO pegged for Illistyl Elventree

Speaking of Illistyl Elventree 1ed has her listed as being a Psionic wielder what is she in 3ed? (I know the real KOMD guys never converted to 3ed but what will the "Official" WOTC stats for her be?)

“I am the King of Rome, and above grammar”

Emperor Sigismund

"Its good to be the King!"

Mel Brooks
Go to Top of Page

Garen Thal
Master of Realmslore

USA
1081 Posts

Posted - 17 Mar 2005 :  06:45:37  Show Profile  Visit Garen Thal's Homepage Send Garen Thal a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Dargoth
Ive got the THO pegged for Illistyl Elventree

Speaking of Illistyl Elventree 1ed has her listed as being a Psionic wielder what is she in 3ed? (I know the real KOMD guys never converted to 3ed but what will the "Official" WOTC stats for her be?
I think it's been mentioned more than once before that part of the Hooded Lady's agreement to provide answers for us included the caveats that a) we would not get to know which of the Knights she plays, and b) we accept that 3E stats of any sort for the Knights will not be forthcoming. Ever.

Not that this information isn't interesting, of course. But, like some matters of Realmslore, this is one of those things we simply can't know.
Go to Top of Page

Dargoth
Great Reader

Australia
4569 Posts

Posted - 17 Mar 2005 :  06:56:22  Show Profile  Visit Dargoth's Homepage Send Dargoth a Private Message


A)Im not asking her which charcter she plays, I am like George stating my opinion Im not expecting THO to confirm or deny it

B) I suspect we will see 3ed stats for KoMD in some future Dalelands source book (probably under the Dalelands entry) at the very least Id expect to see the Single line stat block of Name, alignment, Class and level.



“I am the King of Rome, and above grammar”

Emperor Sigismund

"Its good to be the King!"

Mel Brooks
Go to Top of Page

Kuje
Great Reader

USA
7915 Posts

Posted - 17 Mar 2005 :  07:03:52  Show Profile  Send Kuje an AOL message  Click to see Kuje's MSN Messenger address  Send Kuje a Yahoo! Message Send Kuje a Private Message
Ed, or THO, or one of the other scribes.

How does dating, no not that kind! get you minds out of the gutter!, work in FR?

Jerryd wants to argue that a date has to be a precise term that includes a day/a month/a year. But the FRCS says that most major events like birthdays, weddings, deaths, etc, are only given years. So is a year enough to call it a date or does it have to have a day and a month with the year to actually be called a "date?"

For some of us, books are as important as almost anything else on earth. What a miracle it is that out of these small, flat, rigid squares of paper unfolds world after world, worlds that sing to you, comfort and quiet and excite you... Books are full of the things that you don't get in real life - wonderful, lyrical language, for instance, right off the bat. - Anne Lamott, Bird by Bird

My Goodreads page: http://www.goodreads.com/kuje

Scribe for the Candlekeep Compendium

Edited by - Kuje on 17 Mar 2005 07:04:53
Go to Top of Page

Jerryd
Seeker

USA
33 Posts

Posted - 17 Mar 2005 :  07:09:16  Show Profile  Visit Jerryd's Homepage Send Jerryd a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by THO
Hmmm. Jerry, as one of the Knights I can tell you that Cormyr IS “the good kingdom,” and most folk in the Dales (even those who mistrust its “creeping colonialism”) and in Sembia (even those who want to swallow it) admire it - - as a place to live, as a nation of tolerant, loyal, stick-together people, and as, ahem, an efficiently-run realm that gets things done (in terms of addressing the needs of its people).
I never denied that Cormyr was "the good kingdom" - I specifically said that I DID view it as such. What I was disputing was the premise that the War Wizards as Ed has elaborated on them here were organized and successful at playing their part in making it so. See my previous post in which I give my definition of "successful" and "organization." What I wanted was a War Wizards that was successful in their role of helping MAKE Cormyr that good kingdom, but what Ed's described here in my opinion isn't it.

quote:
Originally posted by THO
And I think here is where you and Ed part ways, both on depicting the War Wizards and characterizing Vangerdahast. The key to making campaigns fascinating and long-lasting is depth and the “grayness” that’s been discussed, NOT clear-cut simplicity. Undeniably Ed’s world-setting has been one of the most popular in gaming, and has outlasted many, many competitors in part because the buyers of TSR and WotC products (who had many alternatives to spend their sheckels on) chose to buy Realms products. I think some of them did it because of the complexity, and therefore the endless play possibilities, plus the feeling they get that it's somehow "real."
I certainly don't deny either the profitability or popularity of the Realms, but I think the reason for that is much more about the depth and detail of it than any sense of "grayness" or moral ambiguity you may see in it. Depth and detail don't necessarily go hand-in-hand with grayness or ambiguity.

quote:
Originally posted by THO
I dispute your judgement of Vangey as a “deluded villain.” HE thinks he’s “doing right,” and who’s to say he’s wrong?
Anyone who's got a firm grasp on what's right and wrong. Anyone who is a hypocrite, liar and a murderer (in Garen's words that Ed ENDORSED) can't possibly be considered to be "doing right."

quote:
Originally posted by THO
The fact that he’s not a one-dimensional hero seems to ruin him for you, but I see Ed’s depiction of him as a man wrestling with trying to impose his will on the world, and settling for the “end justifying the means,” as far more interesting than plain black and white (which you stated your preference for in an earlier post). In short, Vangey is a stronger character for it, and the campaign possibilities more fascinating.
I reject the notion that portraying anyone with a firm and uncompromising sense of right and wrong - of good and evil - renders them "one-dimensional." One can have a rich and in-depth personality and still hold to a set of moral absolutes - and I DON'T think that portraying a character as "shades of gray" or ambiguous makes them stronger (unless you mean "strong" in the thespianic context of "a challenge to the player to portray").

quote:
Originally posted by THO
As far as the logic of your arguments goes, you shoot yourself in the foot on this one: you cry dismay at Vangey being a villain who deceives the realm on one hand, and mention his retirement out of MORAL exhaustion. Well, neither the shining man of Good or the blackhearted villain would ever suffer from MORAL exhaustion; only characters who are neither one nor the other, but wrestling with themselves in between, are subject to such thinking and feeling (such as disillusionment).
This is false. A person who was possessed of a moral certainty and self-confidence who has that certainty and confidence ripped away due to a realization that the premises it depended upon were false (e.g. through a belated realization of reality that had been previously evaded and denied) suffers at least as much - and probably more - moral exhaustion then a person who had never possessed certainty and self-confidence to start with.

quote:
Originally posted by THO
I generally keep out of the debate between you and Ed on matters Cormyrean, and have already passed on these two posts to Ed to comment (again: he’s got a huge backlog of replies to tender, first, and I suspect you’ve both largely reached the “agree to disagree” point), but it amazes me that you can enjoy the Realms - - for some years, by the sounds of it - - and yet cling to a preference for clear-cut black and white good/evil, “organized just like this or is disorganized” viewpoint, because, ahem, that isn’t the Realms.
I had perceived much of it as such, and while I haven't read every novel or story in the realms the ones I have read can all fit the "hero wins and villain loses" model, thanks in large part to the Code that TSR/WotC had once followed. Ed himself acknowledged earlier in our discussion that not nearly as much detail about Vangey has gotten into publication as he would have liked, thus my original opinion of him was based on a dataset that was limited enough to easily lead to misdirection. That opinion started showing cracks thanks to his behavior in Beyond the High Road and Death of the Dragon, but Ed himself has really plied the sledge-hammer to finish off my prior image of him.

The games in which I participate ARE in more of a clear-cut, black-and-white style - wallowing in moral angst, ambiguity or relativism is something that has never appealed to me or been a source of uplift or entertainment. (And for what reason do we game if not for entertainment and uplift?)

quote:
Originally posted by THO
For the record, most of the Knights were born in Cormyr or grew up there, we DO think of it as “the bright shining place” (and do son largely because of what Vangey built it into), and I’m puzzled as to why you take such energetic runs at the creator of the Realms and HIS view of the place and characters he’s created, just because they don’t fit your preferences. I don’t pick up a basic geography book, flip to Arkansas, read the name of its state capitol, and snarl, “THAT’S not the place * I * want to be the capitol - - so it isn’t!”
There's a big difference. A geography book is a reference to real-world fact, and facts are impervious to wants, wishes or whims. The Realms, on the other hand, is a created work of fantasy that can be held to certain aesthetic expectations or standards - or *re*created and modified to meet the expectations and standards of the individual DM and group. If I were writing up the War Wizards solely for my own gaming use, I'd have no hesitation at all in modifying things as I saw fit to meet my own standards of verisimilitude, believability, and aesthetics. My purpose in writing the Military Forces of Cormyr, on the other hand, was a collation of data from various books and - more importantly - extrapolations and detail-filling-in on that data to make them more playable and that might be useful to a larger audience than myself. This means I have to keep as close to published lore as I can and still produce something I'm comfortable with putting my name on. Thus the difficulty I face when Ed's views on certain matters of verisimilitude, definitions or aesthetics differ from mine.

quote:
Originally posted by THO
I’m also puzzled as to why you believe the only way to organize the War Wizards is the way you see as most efficient.
I've given my reasons in-depth in past posts, and tried to make it as clear as I could. Perhaps I've failed to achieve that clarity, or perhaps we just think too differently to really bridge the gap, but in either case I doubt there's any point to rehashing it now, which is why I'm trying to wind this down now.

And now a couple of comments to A Gavel...

quote:
Originally posted by A Gavel
However, Jerry, Ed’s point very much stands. Elizabeth DID establish a security force.
That's not the point I was disputing, though. I never denied that, nor did I deny that Elzabeth's government was well-organized. Ed mentioned Elizabethan England (among other real-world instances) as comparable to the War Wizards in degree of organization and THIS was the point I was disputing. The War Wizards as Ed has described them here are NOT NEARLY as organized as his real-world examples, making his analogy one that was not at all apt.

quote:
Originally posted by A Gavel
And like The Hooded One, I’m afraid (with respect) I find some of your arguments to Ed to be rather simplistic “but I want things to be THIS way, not the way you’re telling me they are.” As I have to tell rather a lot of people who appear before me in court: Life and law are the way they are, not the way we want them to be.
As I mentioned in reply to the Hooded One above, there's a big difference between your real-life court and the Realms. Real-life is subject to objective reality that limits how much change an individual can affect, but the Realms is an artistic creation - a fantasy world - that CAN be altered to be the way we want in our individual games. I certainly can't alter how Ed presents the Realms or how WotC publishes it, but I can disagree with them and I can alter it however I desire in my game.
Go to Top of Page

Melfius
Senior Scribe

USA
516 Posts

Posted - 17 Mar 2005 :  14:15:59  Show Profile  Visit Melfius's Homepage  Send Melfius an AOL message Send Melfius a Private Message
How about both Ed and Jerryd agree to disagree and we go from there?

Melfius, Pixie-Priest of Puck - Head Chef, The Faerie Kitchen, Candlekeep Inn
"What's in his pockets, besides me?"
Read a tale of my earlier days! - Happiness Comes in Small Packages
Go to Top of Page

Blueblade
Senior Scribe

USA
804 Posts

Posted - 17 Mar 2005 :  15:03:12  Show Profile  Visit Blueblade's Homepage Send Blueblade a Private Message
Sounds good to me. Jerryd’s recent posts that hammer home his preference for black and white, and specially his insistence on apply his and only his definition of “organization” make it clear to me, at least, the pointlessness of arguing with him.
It’s like disputing with anyone who insists on defining all of the terms used in the argument before the talking begins.
If anyone has the right to do that here, it’s Ed, being as he created the War Wizards, Vangerdahast, Cormyr, and the Realms, NOT Jerryd.
I think Jerryd has the perfect right to make the War Wizards whatever he wants them to be, in his campaign. I don’t think he should be trying to argue with the Realms creator (why do that except to try to change ED’s view of them, so Ed will change it for us all?).
And I note (in Jerryd’s reply about Elizabethan England posted above) that Jerryd is again refusing to accept a point I think Ed has clearly scored, by redefining “organization.” If you can’t argue “fair,” don’t argue.
Go to Top of Page

A Gavel
Seeker

USA
53 Posts

Posted - 17 Mar 2005 :  15:25:19  Show Profile  Visit A Gavel's Homepage Send A Gavel a Private Message
To Blueblade: I agree heartily. Jerryd is certainly not “arguing fair” in his posts here. Specifically, he applies HIS judgements of what’s organized not only to the War Wizards, but to Ed’s arguments (in his posted reply to me).
And Jerryd, your point about the Realms being different from the real world (and therefore alterable by arguing strenuously) is very much a two-edged sword. I’m used to sitting in impartial judgement (or striving to do that) daily, and I’m not seeing consistent arguments in your posts. I’m seeing someone who feels passionately about his own view of the War Wizards (commendable!) shifting his arguments constantly to get his own way. If I was Ed, I’d have run out of patience with replying to you one exchange of posts ago. To refuse to accept the expertise of the creator of a fictitious organization seems pointless to me: if you postulate that Ed’s wrong about the War Wizards, then you are arguing about nothing at all, because you’re refusing to trust the only source any of us have for the very thing you’re arguing about.
It’s like arguing with Rowling about Harry Potter, or Tolkien about Middle Earth. Ultimately pointless. Suggesting to Ed, “Uh, I think you’ve missed something ehre or got something wrong, and here’s why,” is valuable to all Realms fans, but it seems to me, Jerryd, that you’ve gone far past that, long ago, and this is now about winning this argument at all costs.
Now, if you’re trying to manipulate Ed into providing MORE details of the War Wizards and Vangerdahast, that’s different, and I’m behind you all the way . . .
Go to Top of Page

Kuje
Great Reader

USA
7915 Posts

Posted - 17 Mar 2005 :  19:08:47  Show Profile  Send Kuje an AOL message  Click to see Kuje's MSN Messenger address  Send Kuje a Yahoo! Message Send Kuje a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Melfius

How about both Ed and Jerryd agree to disagree and we go from there?



Agrees with you as well. :)

For some of us, books are as important as almost anything else on earth. What a miracle it is that out of these small, flat, rigid squares of paper unfolds world after world, worlds that sing to you, comfort and quiet and excite you... Books are full of the things that you don't get in real life - wonderful, lyrical language, for instance, right off the bat. - Anne Lamott, Bird by Bird

My Goodreads page: http://www.goodreads.com/kuje

Scribe for the Candlekeep Compendium
Go to Top of Page

thom
Seeker

USA
69 Posts

Posted - 17 Mar 2005 :  22:04:59  Show Profile  Visit thom's Homepage Send thom a Private Message
quote:
Now, if you’re trying to manipulate Ed into providing MORE details of the War Wizards and Vangerdahast, that’s different, and I’m behind you all the way . .


Hmmm...so that's what he'd been doing for the last 15 pages! Now why didn't I think of doing that?

On a lighter note, THO, (or anyone here versed in cities lore) I've been following Ed's column about Melvos Hammerstars & I love it! But I'm trying to figure out how to map out 1 of his tallhouses for my PCs to stumble adventure thru, and I'm slightly confused.

A typical 4 story is narrow "usually one one-room-and-a-passage wide".
Does this mean a (say) 30 foot wide tallhouse has a 5 foot wide passage running down the left side of the floor and a 25 foot room takes of the remaining amount like so:?
__________
h|......r
a|..... o
l |..... o
l |..... m
_|________

And so is each floor ONE big room or is it divided into 2,3, or 4 rooms?

Just curious; I'm trying to make them as authentic as possible. Thanks for any help, and as always thanks for your answers!

thom


Go to Top of Page

Kentinal
Great Reader

4305 Posts

Posted - 17 Mar 2005 :  23:36:56  Show Profile Send Kentinal a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by thom



On a lighter note, THO, (or anyone here versed in cities lore) I've been following Ed's column about Melvos Hammerstars & I love it! But I'm trying to figure out how to map out 1 of his tallhouses for my PCs to stumble adventure thru, and I'm slightly confused.

A typical 4 story is narrow "usually one one-room-and-a-passage wide".
Does this mean a (say) 30 foot wide tallhouse has a 5 foot wide passage running down the left side of the floor and a 25 foot room takes of the remaining amount like so:?
__________
h|......r
a|..... o
l |..... o
l |..... m
_|________

And so is each floor ONE big room or is it divided into 2,3, or 4 rooms?



Hmm, city lore tends to lend toward row houses. Where a passage way and stairway (remember are stories). Off hand meeting the ASCII art appears to match description, though coridor might be on the right. As for the rooms themselves constuction tends to indicate a need for internal bearing walls (or at least beams) to support the overall structure and almomost certainly would be divided into rooms within the given space for family type usage. A business might use beams and posts buteven those would tend to have at least a back room.
Go to Top of Page

Jerryd
Seeker

USA
33 Posts

Posted - 18 Mar 2005 :  01:56:43  Show Profile  Visit Jerryd's Homepage Send Jerryd a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by A Gavel
Now, if you’re trying to manipulate Ed into providing MORE details of the War Wizards and Vangerdahast, that’s different, and I’m behind you all the way . . .
In part, that's exactly what I've been doing! Now, I'm not at all saying that I don't believe in the validity of my positions (I do believe in them, and I don't do devil's advocate aruments), but getting more Realmslore is half the reason why I went on so long and at in such depth. Ed says something, and I say "I don't see how that can be, because..." then Ed comes back with something that addresses my reason and sometimes that generates more Realmslore which resolves the problems I was having.

I'll give you an example. In Ed's most recent post, he revealed that the War Wizards are still a going concern because the Harpers are a constant and covert supporting element. It's long been obvious that the Harpers are meddlers par excellence, of course, but what wasn't clear until now was the DEGREE to which they meddled in War Wizards affairs - within the context of the War Wizards operations, were the Harpers just a non-essential sideshow good for individual stories but not indispensible to the big picture, or did the Harpers so involve themselves as to become essential to getting the job done? That newly-revealed large degree resolved the apparent contradiction I saw between Ed's earlier words about the War Wizards and their APPARENT success at helping to make Cormyr a great place, and the revelation didn't take place until late in the discussion. We'd have missed it if Ed and I hadn't gone on at length, so all the verbiage was worth it if you look at it that way!

As to your other points... The other half of my motivation is simply an attempt to understand WHY Ed and I disagree on some things - an attempt to dig down underneath and see what the root of the difference is. He says A, I say B, he says A because of C, I say B because of D, he says C because of E, I say D because of F, and so on until we eventually drill down to the root and fundmental cause of our difference - I say Z is this, he says Z is that. Maybe one or the other of us will find an error of logic somewhere, or we will find the basic premise, principle or conceptual definition we differ on that most typically results in agreement to disagree - but at least the root cause of the difference is revealed, rather than just stopping at the surface and hand-waving the difference away as "everyone's got an opinion". You may think that this kind of argument is not "arguing fair", but personally I think that's how arguments are SUPPOSED to be conducted - intermediate steps in the argument SHOULD be challenged in an attempt to get to the bottom of the issue! As it turned out, I discovered that he and I do have some definitional differences in concepts that at the higher levels caused us to sort of argue around each other. And I don't believe my arguments have been shifting - I've been saying the same things all along, just perhaps trying to say the same thing in a different way to clarify my meaning and intent.

My style of discussion may not be to everyone's taste and I may be judged as being stubborn, pedantic, confrontational, nit-picky or obsessive over minutiae and detail - or even "unfair" (although I'd disupte that last judgement) - but it's not a style I plan to change because it serves my needs. Now that I've explained my discussion style and the reasons for it, though, we don't need to get into an extended discussion about it since it's not Realms relevant.
Go to Top of Page
Page: of 84 Previous Topic Topic Next Topic  
Previous Page | Next Page
 New Topic  Topic Locked
 Printer Friendly
Jump To:
Candlekeep Forum © 1999-2017 Candlekeep.com Go To Top Of Page
Snitz Forums 2000