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Lord Karsus
Great Reader

USA
2880 Posts

Posted - 16 Nov 2006 :  03:48:46  Show Profile  Send Lord Karsus an AOL message Send Lord Karsus a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Steven Schend
Go right ahead. Sounds amusing and I don't mind the homage at all.

Steven



-Excellent. I'll do your name proud.

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

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

Finland
1564 Posts

Posted - 16 Nov 2006 :  21:40:51  Show Profile  Visit Asgetrion's Homepage Send Asgetrion a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Steven Schend

quote:
Originally posted by Mace Hammerhand

Steven, is there a chance you're going to revisit and re-work your Dungeon Crawl adventures to fit into 3.5?



I'd never say never, but it's unlikely they'll be updated...unless they work the Lost Level and Maddgoth's Castle and the Aquitiocrun into the new Undermountain product they're planning....

In any case, it'll not be me doing rules adjustments, as I'm not as up on 3.5 as most. Heck, I bug Eric and Tom whenever I have a rules query now.

SES



Steven, those modules were GREAT! The only major change that our DM did, was to replace Maddgoth with Maaril, who was a major foe of our PCs at that time.

"What am I doing today? Ask me tomorrow - I can be sure of giving you the right answer then."
-- Askarran of Selgaunt, Master Sage, speaking to a curious merchant, Year of the Helm
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Steven Schend
Forgotten Realms Designer & Author

USA
1631 Posts

Posted - 17 Nov 2006 :  13:45:59  Show Profile  Visit Steven Schend's Homepage  Send Steven Schend a Yahoo! Message Send Steven Schend a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Asgetrion

quote:
Originally posted by Steven Schend

quote:
Originally posted by Mace Hammerhand

Steven, is there a chance you're going to revisit and re-work your Dungeon Crawl adventures to fit into 3.5?



I'd never say never, but it's unlikely they'll be updated...unless they work the Lost Level and Maddgoth's Castle and the Aquitiocrun into the new Undermountain product they're planning....

In any case, it'll not be me doing rules adjustments, as I'm not as up on 3.5 as most. Heck, I bug Eric and Tom whenever I have a rules query now.

SES



Steven, those modules were GREAT! The only major change that our DM did, was to replace Maddgoth with Maaril, who was a major foe of our PCs at that time.



Interesting substitution; did he alter all those homunculi to be faerie dragons or something to be in keeping with Maaril's title?

Thanks for the kind words, and I'm glad you enjoyed the modules.

SES

For current projects and general natter, see www.steveneschend.com
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Dart Ambermoon
Learned Scribe

Germany
253 Posts

Posted - 18 Nov 2006 :  04:06:50  Show Profile  Visit Dart Ambermoon's Homepage Send Dart Ambermoon a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Just to add my voice in praising the modules. I thought them terrific, too...and, well, I only have to say "Steven Schend worked on this" to my players and they go bananas after I ran them through them. They hate and fear your work...in an "enjoying it" good kind of way of course.

Hmm...maybe I should confront them with a NPC called Schend...just for the kicks *laughs, as he sees his players running hard and fast in his mind“s eye*.

~ In Finder I trust, for danger I lust ~
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Lemernis
Senior Scribe

378 Posts

Posted - 20 Nov 2006 :  13:08:09  Show Profile  Visit Lemernis's Homepage Send Lemernis a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Steven, a question about racial tolerance in Amn:

In Lands of Intrigue, the chapter 'Civilized Races' of Book II: Amn suggests that for an Amnian to encounter any race other than a human or halfling is very rare. Dwarves, elves, half-elves, and half-orcs (outside of Purskul) are almost never seen. Dwarves and elves, when they are seen, are usually travelers or adventurers. Half-elves and half-orcs are virtually unknown. Most in Amn have never seen, and never will see, a gnome in their entire lifetime.

But this doesn't seem to square well with the fact that Amn receives an enormous volume of caravan and sea trade from abroad. Caravans from the southern Sword Coast and Western Heartlands, and Amn's seaports, almost have to be bringing Amnians into contact with a wide variety of other races on a daily basis.

Is the rarity of contact with dwarves, elves, half-elves, and half-orcs something of an oversight?

Or is the limited contact with other races mainly due to Amnian society being heavily bigoted? (Halflings being racially intolerant as well?)

It is noted that half-orcs will be regarded as second-class citizens anywhere in Amn outside of Purskul, no matter how rich they become. That race has monster blood, so that alone could account for the bigotry in their specific case... But with wealth trumping all else in the Amnian social hierarchy, it does say a lot that even an extremely wealthy half-orc would be shunned.

But does the same basic intolerance apply in Amn to all other races? Amnian culture is acutely status-conscious, shallow, gossipy, petty, full of prejudices, etc. There is no scholarship in Amn, no written history, and most knowledge of Amn's history and the outside world is passed down intergenerationally at the family hearth. Amnians have their deeply ingrained prejudices against mages, for example.

I could envision a strong racial intolerance easily occuring in Amn. If so, perhaps races other than humans and halfling are consequently keenly aware that they would be unwelcome, if they tried to settle in Amn. So they tend to limit contact, and keep interactions curt and 'business only'.

In any event, one would think that exposure to other races in a land with so much trade from abroad would be much higher...

Edited by - Lemernis on 20 Nov 2006 13:13:37
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Zanan
Senior Scribe

Germany
942 Posts

Posted - 21 Nov 2006 :  11:22:43  Show Profile  Visit Zanan's Homepage Send Zanan a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Vendui!

Over at the Forgotten Realms Chat board, a debate is brewing about the return of that city/realm in what was formerly Miyeritar and the possible influx of former/new followers of Eilistraee to the Realms. People are claiming that this return involves the sharn as well, "transformed" former followers of the Dark Maiden. Now, I hold my hands up and have to admit that I haven't yet read the novel so far, thus I have no clue about this return at all. What I do know is the info on the sharn which we have from the Menzoberranzan box and Monsters of Faerūn, neither makes a mention on them being transformed Eilistraeens. Obviously, any new novel or sourcebook can shed new light on this, as Blackstaff apparently did.
My question now would be about in-setting relevance and the number of inhabitants / worshippers / followers of the risen again place - with regard to Eilistraee. Or will we see a sourcebook that deals with this event anytime soon and sheds some more tangible facts on the issue? Obviously, if these sharn were hidden followers of the Dark Maiden, her status as a lesser deity would be easier to explain, given the low numbers of worshippers that she has - in the sourcebooks.

Aluve, Zanan!

Cave quid dicis, quando et cui!

Gęš a wyrd swa hio scel!

In memory of Alura Durshavin.

Visit my "Homepage" to find A Guide to the Drow NPCs of Faerūn, Drow and non-Drow PrC and much more.
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Steven Schend
Forgotten Realms Designer & Author

USA
1631 Posts

Posted - 21 Nov 2006 :  15:51:24  Show Profile  Visit Steven Schend's Homepage  Send Steven Schend a Yahoo! Message Send Steven Schend a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Lemernis

Steven, a question about racial tolerance in Amn:

In Lands of Intrigue, the chapter 'Civilized Races' of Book II: Amn suggests that for an Amnian to encounter any race other than a human or halfling is very rare. Dwarves, elves, half-elves, and half-orcs (outside of Purskul) are almost never seen. Dwarves and elves, when they are seen, are usually travelers or adventurers. Half-elves and half-orcs are virtually unknown. Most in Amn have never seen, and never will see, a gnome in their entire lifetime.

But this doesn't seem to square well with the fact that Amn receives an enormous volume of caravan and sea trade from abroad. Caravans from the southern Sword Coast and Western Heartlands, and Amn's seaports, almost have to be bringing Amnians into contact with a wide variety of other races on a daily basis.

Is the rarity of contact with dwarves, elves, half-elves, and half-orcs something of an oversight?

Or is the limited contact with other races mainly due to Amnian society being heavily bigoted? (Halflings being racially intolerant as well?)

It is noted that half-orcs will be regarded as second-class citizens anywhere in Amn outside of Purskul, no matter how rich they become. That race has monster blood, so that alone could account for the bigotry in their specific case... But with wealth trumping all else in the Amnian social hierarchy, it does say a lot that even an extremely wealthy half-orc would be shunned.

But does the same basic intolerance apply in Amn to all other races? Amnian culture is acutely status-conscious, shallow, gossipy, petty, full of prejudices, etc. There is no scholarship in Amn, no written history, and most knowledge of Amn's history and the outside world is passed down intergenerationally at the family hearth. Amnians have their deeply ingrained prejudices against mages, for example.

I could envision a strong racial intolerance easily occuring in Amn. If so, perhaps races other than humans and halfling are consequently keenly aware that they would be unwelcome, if they tried to settle in Amn. So they tend to limit contact, and keep interactions curt and 'business only'.

In any event, one would think that exposure to other races in a land with so much trade from abroad would be much higher...



Amn is heavily humanocentric and biased so, as you've stated. They tolerate the halflings only out of familiarity (and their longtime presence in both Tethyr, their former realm which is now part of Amn, and the fact that they have trade goods (wine, etc.) that Amnians want. They tolerate the half-orcs because they want the labor/slaves. In no way does this mean they'll actually consider them equals as living beings.

Dwarves and elves and gnomes aren't necessarily known (at least in this area since the fall of the surface dwarf realms around there) to be all that organized in large numbers for trading. And the gnomes aren't either.

It may seem a stretch to declare that most Amnians see anyone who isn't human as thoroughly alien, but even with all the trade, that's no guarantee that they'll see other races. Humans tend to dominate the sea trades and caravan costers that bring and remove trade to/from Amn. The occassional elf, dwarf, gnome, or other is just that--rare and considered dangerous.

One other reason behind Amn's distrust of demihumans is simple--those they do see via land or sea are rarely peaceful traders or adventurers. They're more often the pirates (over which I regrettably glossed over some in LOI and EoSS) or the wandering monsters of the plains.

Don't know if this helps clarify or further confuse. If you want to continue discussing this, great; let's just talk about specific situations, which always change the broad generalizations a tad.

Steven

For current projects and general natter, see www.steveneschend.com
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Steven Schend
Forgotten Realms Designer & Author

USA
1631 Posts

Posted - 21 Nov 2006 :  16:22:07  Show Profile  Visit Steven Schend's Homepage  Send Steven Schend a Yahoo! Message Send Steven Schend a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Zanan

Vendui!

Over at the Forgotten Realms Chat board, a debate is brewing about the return of that city/realm in what was formerly Miyeritar and the possible influx of former/new followers of Eilistraee to the Realms. People are claiming that this return involves the sharn as well, "transformed" former followers of the Dark Maiden. Now, I hold my hands up and have to admit that I haven't yet read the novel so far, thus I have no clue about this return at all. What I do know is the info on the sharn which we have from the Menzoberranzan box and Monsters of Faerūn, neither makes a mention on them being transformed Eilistraeens. Obviously, any new novel or sourcebook can shed new light on this, as Blackstaff apparently did.
My question now would be about in-setting relevance and the number of inhabitants / worshippers / followers of the risen again place - with regard to Eilistraee. Or will we see a sourcebook that deals with this event anytime soon and sheds some more tangible facts on the issue? Obviously, if these sharn were hidden followers of the Dark Maiden, her status as a lesser deity would be easier to explain, given the low numbers of worshippers that she has - in the sourcebooks.

Aluve, Zanan!



It's certainly possible for there to be Eilistraee worshipers among the risen of Rhymanthiin, though there'd be distinct differences:

A) They would be moon elf worshipers from Miyeritar at best or perhaps a rare drow worshiper of later eras who became a sharn willingly.

B) There would be no dark elf worshipers of Eilistraee from Miyeritar, as I'm not sure she was an actively worshiped power back before the Descent.

C) Even if (B) weren't true, none of the former dark elves of Miyeritar have relinquished their collective sharn forms, which would make their worshiping a dancer a tad tricky at best. To not be sharn would have them suddenly become subject to Corellon's Judgement and become drow (Yes, there's a difference, in this context, between dark elf and drow. Honest.).

D) The majority of those who rose were either citizens and mages of Miyeritar who might worship the other elven gods or the five gods of the Pentad (Dumathoin, Corellon, Sehanine, Oghma, Mystra). Those are the major cathedrals/biggest temples in Rhymanthiin. There's probably one major collective temple for each of the elven, dwarven, and centaur pantheons (assuming the latter, which Eric may correct me on or not).

E) While there were hundreds to thousands over the millennia who became sharn in singular or collective numbers, the sharn were never exclusively transformed worshipers of the Dark Maiden.

Again, there's nothing stopping people from having an influx of people worshiping Eilistraee out of the events of Blackstaff, but her worship would be entirely different.

Eric, help me on this, as I can't check the details of her worship, but in my head, Eilistraee was almost more like a goddess of joy and dance before the Descent. She had to Fall with Araushnee/Lolth and her brother Vhaeraun, which is when her worship became like it is today. Exactly how it all worked, I can't say without more research, so this is my gut-reaciton response this morning. The gods and their history isn't my forte, so feel free to correct me.

This is another discussion to continue, but we'll need to focus the questions a bit, starting with whether or not there was worship of Eilistraee before the Descent or if she was even a known factor at all (or just a daughter of the gods without any mortal worshipers).

Well, hope this nattering helped. Bounce more questions around as needed until you're satisfied. I apologize for the spoilers herein, but it sounds like people have already spoiled the novel a bit for you anyways.

Steven

For current projects and general natter, see www.steveneschend.com
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Kentinal
Great Reader

4273 Posts

Posted - 21 Nov 2006 :  16:35:14  Show Profile Send Kentinal a Private Message  Reply with Quote
2nd Edition

quote:
Major Centers of Worship: Before the elven Crown Wars, Eilisrraee's faith was strong in Miyeritar, and she had small numbers of faithful in Ilythiir and the other elven realms of the time. The Dark Disaster, unleashed during the Third Crown War, transformed Miyeritar into the blasted wasteland now known as the High Moor and dealt a devastating blow to the ranks of the Dark Maiden's followers. When the Ilythiiri were transformed into the drow and banished from the sunlit lands at the end of the Fourth Crown War some five hundred years later, Eilistraee's church effectively collapsed and was not reformed for millennia. A few ancient, sacred sites of power built before the Crown Wars survive in the Misty Forest, along the borders of the High Moor, and in the Shar, scattered across the onceverdant savannah.

"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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Lemernis
Senior Scribe

378 Posts

Posted - 21 Nov 2006 :  21:03:14  Show Profile  Visit Lemernis's Homepage Send Lemernis a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Steven Schend

Amn is heavily humanocentric and biased so, as you've stated. They tolerate the halflings only out of familiarity (and their longtime presence in both Tethyr, their former realm which is now part of Amn, and the fact that they have trade goods (wine, etc.) that Amnians want. They tolerate the half-orcs because they want the labor/slaves. In no way does this mean they'll actually consider them equals as living beings.

Dwarves and elves and gnomes aren't necessarily known (at least in this area since the fall of the surface dwarf realms around there) to be all that organized in large numbers for trading. And the gnomes aren't either.

It may seem a stretch to declare that most Amnians see anyone who isn't human as thoroughly alien, but even with all the trade, that's no guarantee that they'll see other races. Humans tend to dominate the sea trades and caravan costers that bring and remove trade to/from Amn. The occassional elf, dwarf, gnome, or other is just that--rare and considered dangerous.

One other reason behind Amn's distrust of demihumans is simple--those they do see via land or sea are rarely peaceful traders or adventurers. They're more often the pirates (over which I regrettably glossed over some in LOI and EoSS) or the wandering monsters of the plains.

Don't know if this helps clarify or further confuse. If you want to continue discussing this, great; let's just talk about specific situations, which always change the broad generalizations a tad.

Steven



Thanks! That's a sensible explanation.

First, except for a small community of shield dwarves in the Cloud Peaks and a few bands of wild elves hiding in the forests (both reclusive) there really aren't communities of those races in the land to attempt trade to begin with. There are no gnome or half-elf communities at all. And second, even if these races had any interest in trade, they'd likely have no wish to have Amnians looking down their noses at them.

But as to caravans from abroad... Is it then safe to say that the Amnian bias to trade exclusively with fellow humans is so strong that they will typically refuse to do business with any other race? (Halfings being the only exception, as noted.) Or at least for Amnians fail to given these races any reasonable sort of deal? And if so, then perhaps caravan companies from abroad that do business in Amn might even be somewhat averse to hiring non-humans? I.e., for fear that it may harm their business prospects?

Because if so, that could explain why there is such limited contact with dwarves, elves, half-elves, gnomes, and half-orcs (outside of Purskul).

I guess the same would apply to adventurers passing through who seek to hire out their services as caravan guards, in Amnwater let's say. There'd be a strong bigotry, i.e., the subtext to those races seeking employment would be "demi-humans need not apply."

What about seeking to join up with the military, though? The NWN2 persistent world project I'm involved with will be set in central Amn during early winter 1370, so there will be urgency on the part of the Amnian military.
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Asgetrion
Master of Realmslore

Finland
1564 Posts

Posted - 22 Nov 2006 :  00:43:14  Show Profile  Visit Asgetrion's Homepage Send Asgetrion a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Steven Schend

Interesting substitution; did he alter all those homunculi to be faerie dragons or something to be in keeping with Maaril's title?

Thanks for the kind words, and I'm glad you enjoyed the modules.

SES



Actually, I think that he did not change anything else in the module. I remember that there was a fairie dragon in the castle, and that the homonculi were a major threat to our PCs. All of this was very much in the same spirit with what we had witnessed in the Dragon Tower - magical experiments with Hordlings/Broken Ones (I am guessing here - there were a LOT of all sorts of weird unique beings there) and fear. Many good-aligned people and monsters that were constantly and ruthlessly tortured - Maaril had a strange magical "fear/pain collector" (located within the Dragon Tower's mouth, but affecting the whole tower)that produced Feyrs of these feelings. Come to think of it, he did not have anything else to do with dragons beside his tower and his nickname...

"What am I doing today? Ask me tomorrow - I can be sure of giving you the right answer then."
-- Askarran of Selgaunt, Master Sage, speaking to a curious merchant, Year of the Helm
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Rinonalyrna Fathomlin
Great Reader

USA
7106 Posts

Posted - 22 Nov 2006 :  01:28:37  Show Profile  Visit Rinonalyrna Fathomlin's Homepage Send Rinonalyrna Fathomlin a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Steven Schend


C) Even if (B) weren't true, none of the former dark elves of Miyeritar have relinquished their collective sharn forms, which would make their worshiping a dancer a tad tricky at best. To not be sharn would have them suddenly become subject to Corellon's Judgement and become drow (Yes, there's a difference, in this context, between dark elf and drow. Honest.).



Hmmm, honestly I see that (and always have seen that since I read Blackstaff) as kind of unfair. Why should those people be punished just because of what their former race was?

"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)

Edited by - Rinonalyrna Fathomlin on 22 Nov 2006 01:29:12
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Kentinal
Great Reader

4273 Posts

Posted - 22 Nov 2006 :  02:33:10  Show Profile Send Kentinal a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Dark Elves - from time to time various souce books have appeared to imply they exisited after The Descent, but other source clearly indicate all dark elves were turned into Drow.

Can your inventive mind come up with how both are true?

"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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Zanan
Senior Scribe

Germany
942 Posts

Posted - 22 Nov 2006 :  10:14:39  Show Profile  Visit Zanan's Homepage Send Zanan a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Thanks for the exhaustive reply!

As has already been posted, Miyeritar was indeed one if not the center of worship of the Dark Maiden (source: Demihuman Deities). That said, being a center of worship of one faith does not necessarily imply that other deities were any less representative there, only that their respective "centers of worship" did not lay in Miyeritar.

As for dark elves post Descent ... to my understanding, all dark elves of old were transformed into drow, but they were still addressed and speak of themselves as "dark elves".

Cave quid dicis, quando et cui!

Gęš a wyrd swa hio scel!

In memory of Alura Durshavin.

Visit my "Homepage" to find A Guide to the Drow NPCs of Faerūn, Drow and non-Drow PrC and much more.
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Steven Schend
Forgotten Realms Designer & Author

USA
1631 Posts

Posted - 24 Nov 2006 :  12:14:17  Show Profile  Visit Steven Schend's Homepage  Send Steven Schend a Yahoo! Message Send Steven Schend a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Lemernis
But as to caravans from abroad... Is it then safe to say that the Amnian bias to trade exclusively with fellow humans is so strong that they will typically refuse to do business with any other race? (Halfings being the only exception, as noted.) Or at least for Amnians fail to given these races any reasonable sort of deal? And if so, then perhaps caravan companies from abroad that do business in Amn might even be somewhat averse to hiring non-humans? I.e., for fear that it may harm their business prospects?

Because if so, that could explain why there is such limited contact with dwarves, elves, half-elves, gnomes, and half-orcs (outside of Purskul).

I guess the same would apply to adventurers passing through who seek to hire out their services as caravan guards, in Amnwater let's say. There'd be a strong bigotry, i.e., the subtext to those races seeking employment would be "demi-humans need not apply."

What about seeking to join up with the military, though? The NWN2 persistent world project I'm involved with will be set in central Amn during early winter 1370, so there will be urgency on the part of the Amnian military.



Think of things like people and personalities and how they interact. If you're traveling toward a land filled with rich bigots who prefer (almost to exception) the company only of their own race and also fear magic, you're hardly apt to want to set up trade in magical things with them if you're a demihuman. Being made to feel unwelcome at every tavern, inn, or marketplace is only the beginning; imagine made-up "road taxes" or "bridge taxes" to cross the merest streams, etc.

The only place outsiders (i.e. any non-Amnian humans or nonhumans) would be welcome at all are in the slightly more egalitarian military (and not to mention horrifically desperate for people). Bear in mind that any nonhumans in the ranks will suffer prejudice and problems with the rank and file (as well as their superiors who may want to send them on more than their share of suicidal missions) for being what they are....and that's not even touching on anyone with magic....

Thanks for making me think about this stuff after a long time away from Amn. Yes, the land has its good points, but it's stuff like this that makes it more real to many. It's like Sembia, but warmer and slightly more moral. Just slightly, though.

SES

For current projects and general natter, see www.steveneschend.com
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Steven Schend
Forgotten Realms Designer & Author

USA
1631 Posts

Posted - 24 Nov 2006 :  12:21:44  Show Profile  Visit Steven Schend's Homepage  Send Steven Schend a Yahoo! Message Send Steven Schend a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Kentinal

2nd Edition

quote:
Major Centers of Worship: Before the elven Crown Wars, Eilisrraee's faith was strong in Miyeritar, and she had small numbers of faithful in Ilythiir and the other elven realms of the time. The Dark Disaster, unleashed during the Third Crown War, transformed Miyeritar into the blasted wasteland now known as the High Moor and dealt a devastating blow to the ranks of the Dark Maiden's followers. When the Ilythiiri were transformed into the drow and banished from the sunlit lands at the end of the Fourth Crown War some five hundred years later, Eilistraee's church effectively collapsed and was not reformed for millennia. A few ancient, sacred sites of power built before the Crown Wars survive in the Misty Forest, along the borders of the High Moor, and in the Shar, scattered across the onceverdant savannah.




Okay, I stand corrected. Let's say for the sake of argument, then, that there is a Dark Maiden's Dancehall somewhere in Rhymanthiin; there are worshipers of Eilistraee (as she appeared as a dark elf, not as the drow version of the Dark Dancer); and there's at least 1d8 priests of the old style of worship who could teach any current worshipers of Eilistraee many things long since lost in her worship since the Descent (or because of it). I'm not Ed, so I can't immediately spin out new powers or prayers or rituals, but I'd say she probably has more moon-based powers of old, but whether or not she can still grant things in accord with her old form or not is up to Corellon and individual GMs.

I think most of my other statements on this still hold true, but feel free to discuss.

SES

For current projects and general natter, see www.steveneschend.com
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Steven Schend
Forgotten Realms Designer & Author

USA
1631 Posts

Posted - 24 Nov 2006 :  12:32:37  Show Profile  Visit Steven Schend's Homepage  Send Steven Schend a Yahoo! Message Send Steven Schend a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Zanan

Thanks for the exhaustive reply!

As has already been posted, Miyeritar was indeed one if not the center of worship of the Dark Maiden (source: Demihuman Deities). That said, being a center of worship of one faith does not necessarily imply that other deities were any less representative there, only that their respective "centers of worship" did not lay in Miyeritar.

As for dark elves post Descent ... to my understanding, all dark elves of old were transformed into drow, but they were still addressed and speak of themselves as "dark elves".



As always, bear in mind that these are just my musings--not anything to be construed as canonical in any way. Unless I draw a paycheck from Wizards or am Ed Greenwood, this is all just opinion and tavern talk. [Okay, obligatory disclaimer out of the way. <cracks knuckles and starts typing>]

I'm one of the old-school designers who's fought to make sure there was a distinction historically if not colloquially between drow and dark elves. As I was told back when I worked on Cormanthyr that I couldn't allow any dark elves to NOT be drow, I couldn't leave a loophole for those good dark elves of Miyeritar, alas.

Also remember one thing--Rhymanthiin is a NEW thing. It's NOT just the restored and altered city of Faertelmiir--it's far more than that. Be that as it may, it's also only one city of Miyeritar, and as such, it was the least religious of any of its cities. Thus, my concession of a Dark Maiden's temple there is a conceit to the fans rather than anything rooted in hidden plans or what little logic I bring to my plottings.

For those curious about Miyeritar, I saw it as 8-12 major city-states working semi-independently with a roving seat of power for a central government. There were also a wide band of around 25 towers similar to those among the 4th Circles (in the Blackstaff ritual), around which small villages or towns might also congregate. In all, Miyeritar only consisted of no more than 40 focused settlements and a lot of widespread independent towers or treeholds or burrows or whatnot for its population of elves, centaurs, and various others.

Once every 20 years or so (short for elves), the power would shift among the military, the mages, or the religious, and thus the center of power would shift to the city-state controlled or most influenced by said power group. Faertelmiir was the Library City of Miyeritar, so it was always one of the strongholds for magic more than anything else. Yes, it has temples NOW as Rhymanthiin, and that's the result of those involved in the ritual as well as the races and peoples who became sharn long after Miyeritar's fall and influenced the rebuilding to their wishes and dreams.

And for fans of Lost Empires of Faerun, Kraanfhaor's Door was simply part of one of those tower-settlements which was a major school for wizardry and sorcery. It was not a city-state.

Clear as mud now, right? I'm thinking more and more that I should write more of this up before it flies out of my head.....

SES

For current projects and general natter, see www.steveneschend.com

Edited by - Steven Schend on 24 Nov 2006 12:38:47
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Steven Schend
Forgotten Realms Designer & Author

USA
1631 Posts

Posted - 24 Nov 2006 :  12:44:56  Show Profile  Visit Steven Schend's Homepage  Send Steven Schend a Yahoo! Message Send Steven Schend a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Rinonalyrna Fathomlin

quote:
Originally posted by Steven Schend


C) Even if (B) weren't true, none of the former dark elves of Miyeritar have relinquished their collective sharn forms, which would make their worshiping a dancer a tad tricky at best. To not be sharn would have them suddenly become subject to Corellon's Judgement and become drow (Yes, there's a difference, in this context, between dark elf and drow. Honest.).



Hmmm, honestly I see that (and always have seen that since I read Blackstaff) as kind of unfair. Why should those people be punished just because of what their former race was?



Because gods don't always focus in on individuals unless they're high priests in their religions? Okay, that's one answer, but it's hardly satisfying.

Yes, Lyrna, it's horribly unfair, but the decision was partly due to demands by my bosses at the time (writing Cormanthyr and elvish history) that I erase the distinction between dark elves and drow and could not leave a loophole through which some could survive.

Now, in my mind, part of the unfairness stems from mortals not knowing all of what went into the decisions of the gods, so there may be more backstory behind Corellon's decision. We know he was torn about forcing the punishment on Eilistraee but he could not avoid it for some reason. Exactly what's involved is unknown by this man behind the curtain....and it may never be known, as I doubt there's much demand for yet another edition of the god-books (but I've been wrong before).

SES

For current projects and general natter, see www.steveneschend.com
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Zanan
Senior Scribe

Germany
942 Posts

Posted - 24 Nov 2006 :  15:29:41  Show Profile  Visit Zanan's Homepage Send Zanan a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Steven Schend

As always, bear in mind that these are just my musings--not anything to be construed as canonical in any way. Unless I draw a paycheck from Wizards or am Ed Greenwood, this is all just opinion and tavern talk. [Okay, obligatory disclaimer out of the way. <cracks knuckles and starts typing>]

I'm one of the old-school designers who's fought to make sure there was a distinction historically if not colloquially between drow and dark elves. As I was told back when I worked on Cormanthyr that I couldn't allow any dark elves to NOT be drow, I couldn't leave a loophole for those good dark elves of Miyeritar, alas.

Also remember one thing--Rhymanthiin is a NEW thing. It's NOT just the restored and altered city of Faertelmiir--it's far more than that. Be that as it may, it's also only one city of Miyeritar, and as such, it was the least religious of any of its cities. Thus, my concession of a Dark Maiden's temple there is a conceit to the fans rather than anything rooted in hidden plans or what little logic I bring to my plottings.

For those curious about Miyeritar, I saw it as 8-12 major city-states working semi-independently with a roving seat of power for a central government. There were also a wide band of around 25 towers similar to those among the 4th Circles (in the Blackstaff ritual), around which small villages or towns might also congregate. In all, Miyeritar only consisted of no more than 40 focused settlements and a lot of widespread independent towers or treeholds or burrows or whatnot for its population of elves, centaurs, and various others.

Once every 20 years or so (short for elves), the power would shift among the military, the mages, or the religious, and thus the center of power would shift to the city-state controlled or most influenced by said power group. Faertelmiir was the Library City of Miyeritar, so it was always one of the strongholds for magic more than anything else. Yes, it has temples NOW as Rhymanthiin, and that's the result of those involved in the ritual as well as the races and peoples who became sharn long after Miyeritar's fall and influenced the rebuilding to their wishes and dreams.

And for fans of Lost Empires of Faerun, Kraanfhaor's Door was simply part of one of those tower-settlements which was a major school for wizardry and sorcery. It was not a city-state.

Clear as mud now, right? I'm thinking more and more that I should write more of this up before it flies out of my head.....

SES



Thanks once more for these bits of info. Thing here is, people view anything in the novel as being canon and will - once a discussion happens by - scrutinize every word. Not me, of course
Anyway, it is good (scholarly speaking) to know that by "higher order" all dark elves were turned into drow back then.

Your view on the outlook of Miyeritar is very interesting. Thanks for that too!

Cave quid dicis, quando et cui!

Gęš a wyrd swa hio scel!

In memory of Alura Durshavin.

Visit my "Homepage" to find A Guide to the Drow NPCs of Faerūn, Drow and non-Drow PrC and much more.
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Rinonalyrna Fathomlin
Great Reader

USA
7106 Posts

Posted - 25 Nov 2006 :  00:23:17  Show Profile  Visit Rinonalyrna Fathomlin's Homepage Send Rinonalyrna Fathomlin a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Steven Schend

Because gods don't always focus in on individuals unless they're high priests in their religions? Okay, that's one answer, but it's hardly satisfying.

Yes, Lyrna, it's horribly unfair, but the decision was partly due to demands by my bosses at the time (writing Cormanthyr and elvish history) that I erase the distinction between dark elves and drow and could not leave a loophole through which some could survive.

Now, in my mind, part of the unfairness stems from mortals not knowing all of what went into the decisions of the gods, so there may be more backstory behind Corellon's decision. We know he was torn about forcing the punishment on Eilistraee but he could not avoid it for some reason. Exactly what's involved is unknown by this man behind the curtain....and it may never be known, as I doubt there's much demand for yet another edition of the god-books (but I've been wrong before).

SES



Hmm, that answer does satisfy me a little. I just don't think the whole thing was fair because I'm very much an individualist who believes that individual people have to be judged on a case-by-case basis, otherwise they'll be punished for something they didn't do.

And yes, I do rather like it that there are still some sharn in the Realms.

"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)
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Zimme
Learned Scribe

Denmark
209 Posts

Posted - 25 Nov 2006 :  00:58:58  Show Profile  Click to see Zimme's MSN Messenger address Send Zimme a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Hi again Steven!
I was the one who asked about Backstaff,... Now I have read it. NICE work! Lets just say i did not regret buying it, it is very good.
The reason for this post is that I belive you should have a pat on the shoulder for a job well done, you keep writing like that, and I will keep buying! thats for sure =)

Sometimes I feel like Beshaba is sitting on my back, devoting her entire attention to me!

Rannek.

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Lemernis
Senior Scribe

378 Posts

Posted - 03 Dec 2006 :  00:00:42  Show Profile  Visit Lemernis's Homepage Send Lemernis a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Steven, thanks again for all your answers!

One more question about Amnian bigotry. LoI notes that Amnwater has the following population distribution: 7,500 permanent residents (60% human, 25% halfling, 15% other). Is the 15% then almost entirely half-orcs who have hired out as caravan guards from Purskul?
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Steven Schend
Forgotten Realms Designer & Author

USA
1631 Posts

Posted - 04 Dec 2006 :  10:47:33  Show Profile  Visit Steven Schend's Homepage  Send Steven Schend a Yahoo! Message Send Steven Schend a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Lemernis

Steven, thanks again for all your answers!

One more question about Amnian bigotry. LoI notes that Amnwater has the following population distribution: 7,500 permanent residents (60% human, 25% halfling, 15% other). Is the 15% then almost entirely half-orcs who have hired out as caravan guards from Purskul?



No, not even half of that. I'd say many of those would still count as population of Purskul, since they're hirelings. I'll have to check my notes on Amnwater, as I'm drawing a blank as to its placement and don't have the map in front of me.

More later, but offhand, I'd say that 15% is unnoted with any majority, so it could be a mix of all or any other races to make up that 15% (dwarf, half-elf, elf, half-orc, gnome, each being between 1-5% of the total population). Yes, half-orc is probably the dominant group among that, but no more than 6% of the total population at best.

Steven
who's been impressed by all the work he's seen Lemernis do with Amn...

For current projects and general natter, see www.steveneschend.com
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Marc
Senior Scribe

618 Posts

Posted - 04 Dec 2006 :  11:42:01  Show Profile Send Marc a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Steven, what's the differece between Maornathil and Mhaorathil (Corruption bane)? I mean linguistically and are they related somewhat

Thank you

.
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Lemernis
Senior Scribe

378 Posts

Posted - 04 Dec 2006 :  13:47:22  Show Profile  Visit Lemernis's Homepage Send Lemernis a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Steven Schend

More later, but offhand, I'd say that 15% is unnoted with any majority, so it could be a mix of all or any other races to make up that 15% (dwarf, half-elf, elf, half-orc, gnome, each being between 1-5% of the total population). Yes, half-orc is probably the dominant group among that, but no more than 6% of the total population at best.



Okies, we're just trying to realize the setting as accurately as we can according to canon, we just want to make sure we get it right!

This would seem to make Amnwater just about the most racially diverse community in all of Amn. Kind of an anomoly, really. But at a permanent population of 7,500 that means that 5% = 375 peeps--which is actually quite a lot (equivalent to a large hamlet)! Even 1% is 75 people (a large thorp), which is still enough to have fairly regular (once a year?) sightings (if not interactions). And because Amnwater is situated on such a main trade artery (Eshpurta Road), all that doesn't square too well with the notion that most Amnians will never encounter a demi-human race in their entire lifetime.

Personally, I think Amn being a place where demi-humans are rarely sighted gives it a very unique flavor, I'd sort of like to maintain that if possible... In that vein, for the purposes of a NWN2 persistent world, do you think it makes sense to simply revise that total figure of 15% to something much lower, more like 2%?

Or if the 15% stands, what is the explanation for that unusually high diversity? (One would think it is likely the strong trade in mercenaries.) How do they all get along? Do they tend to live in segregated little neighborhoods, as the halflings do?

I know you said you'll have more for us on this subject, but those are some of the immediate questions that come to my mind.

Lol, I really hope it doesn't feel like I'm busting chops here. It's just that this is figures to be an extremely vital component of our gameworld. Amnwater is where the do-gooder PCs will be starting out, and I'm sure a lot of players will likely want to use NWN2's demi-humans and their various subraces.



Edited by - Lemernis on 04 Dec 2006 15:34:08
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