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Ayrik
Great Reader

Canada
6589 Posts

Posted - 12 Feb 2018 :  03:43:29  Show Profile Send Ayrik a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Perhaps the representation of horns=fiends=teleport is less literal, more symbolic.
Magic is often about metaphors, magical "properties" within are visible on the surface, "signatures" of things are linked to the things themselves.

There's no requirement for Halaster to summon/bind every possible kind of fiend, no matter how big the zoo might be. Maybe he preferred only one or a few kinds which had horns.

And he had a personal preferences, quirks, style. What archmage doesn't?

And he was insane. His reasons for doing things don't have to be understandable to anyone who isn't as insane (in all the same ways) as he was. Manipulating twisted fiendish magics involves a certain "logic" or "mindset" of its own.
And he was brilliant. The "horned ring" design might be clever or elegant in subtle ways which would require a lifetime (or many lifetimes) of study to properly understand.

[/Ayrik]
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Gelcur
Learned Scribe

262 Posts

Posted - 12 Feb 2018 :  06:17:10  Show Profile  Visit Gelcur's Homepage Send Gelcur a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by LordofBones

I don't have City of Splendors with me, but a quick glance at google tells me that the horned rings were only mentioned in Halaster's statblock, in his possessions entry. They were never given an expanded description.



Maybe I can be of help. Horned Ring does in fact have an entry in 3.5 Waterdeep on page 151 under Minor Artifacts.

It seems one of the changes differences between the original Ruins of Undermountain entry and 3.5 is that originally it functioned as a Teleport Ring within UM, it later was changed such that it does not itself teleport but allows one to teleport in UM while wearing it. Both version list only 8 known to exist.

I like the idea that the horns on the ring could have some significance, devil or otherwise. Halaster having cracked secrets most in the Realms haven't even dreamed of investigating seems like fun. Note in 3.5 by making these items minor artifacts it puts them beyond GP value. As such could make for even more interesting question of does/did Halaster have the knowledge of artifact craft?

The party come to a town befallen by hysteria

Rogue: So what's in the general store?
DM: What are you looking for?
Rogue: Whatevers in the store.
DM: Like what?
Rogue: Everything.
DM: There is a lot of stuff.
Rogue: Is there a cart outside?
DM: (rolls) Yes.
Rogue: We'll take it all, we may need it for the greater good.
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Markustay
Realms Explorer extraordinaire

USA
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Posted - 12 Feb 2018 :  07:27:08  Show Profile Send Markustay a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Okay, that's perfect. Thanks for the info.

So forget the earlier version for now. If the rings simply allowed teleportation, drop the fiends altogether and go with what I said about minotaurs; their lore indicates they have a special magic unto themselves where they can 'navigate any labyrinth'. Somehow, Halaster managed to distill the essence of this, and uses horn-powder (crushed minotaur horn) in the process of making the rings.

And be it minotaurs, fiends, unicorns, saytrs, terrasque, etc... doesn't really matter. You only need a small amount (it is a ring, after all), so why people were talking about him 'summoning a whole bunch' (or capturing a whole bunch in the case of monsters) is completely unnecessary. Nothing says that one horn (or a pair) wouldn't be enough for just eight rings. So of you guys were acting like he needed a factory, and had to raid all of hell to get what he needed (although its not like he hasn't been there... INSIDE Asmodeus' head).

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


Edited by - Markustay on 12 Feb 2018 07:28:10
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LordofBones
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656 Posts

Posted - 12 Feb 2018 :  08:54:28  Show Profile Send LordofBones a Private Message  Reply with Quote
He's a 30th level wizard. Summoning a bunch of extraplanar beings to massacre them for crafting ingredients is what they do on Tuesday mornings while having their pit fiend butlers prepare toast, eggs and bacon, with some tea and honey.
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sleyvas
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USA
6922 Posts

Posted - 12 Feb 2018 :  12:55:49  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by sleyvas

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

But with non-fiendish teleportation possible, why go thru all the effort of involving fiends in making teleporting rings?



Cheaper in time and resources to make the rings. I see Halaster/Hilather and the Imaskari as having maybe used a lot of "shortcuts" when it came to magic item creation by instilling an actual magic creature into things and powering them via the creature's own innate magic.



So it's cheaper in time and resources to summon a fiend, bind it to a ring, do something about the fact it's going to resist all this *and* that it has innate resistance to overcome, as opposed to just casting a single spell?



Yes. Its "cheaper" because it doesn't necessarily need to draw on the weave as much. Its "powered" by the creature.

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas
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sleyvas
Great Reader

USA
6922 Posts

Posted - 12 Feb 2018 :  12:57:24  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by dazzlerdal

Ahh the joys of the 3e economy.

Because adventurers have on average about 3000000gp disposable income by the time they are level 10 it takes all the fun and meaning out of the game.

This magic item costs 50000gp to make for example, no problem ill just chuck some money at it and hey presto. Never mind that 50000gp in medieval times should buy you a rather large castle or pay for a house full of diamonds.


Making a magic item should be hellishly expensive. The cost in gold should be representative of all the weird reagents needed to make it. No one should have 50000 gp lying around unless they have just sold an entire country to get it.

So Halaster would probably cry at the thoughy of paying for all the weird stuff he needs to make these items. He has his portals randomly abduct people from all over faerun who happen to possess an eye of newt that has passed through the digestive system of a fire salamander (the elemental kind), and as a focus the horn of a fiend capable of teleportation (when you kill a summoned fiend their body disappears and they reform on baator so its not easy) and any other hundred or so reagents that Halaster has decided upon.

As he enchants the items these reagents are consumed or moulded into the creation.


Its how magic should be. The rarer and more magical the creature the better value the reagents you get from them. Similar deal for plants - a blade of witch weed bathed in moonlight and doused in dragonfire.



This is how orcs make magic items. They dont have hundreds of gp lying around to make potions and enchant weapons. They use the blood of elven foetus', the petrified hands of dwarven miners. They essentially craft the item for free but first they have to gather all the reagents from their enemies.


When you dont have the reagents then you have to pay by hiring agents (adventurers to track it down) or commission a merchant to get his contacts to find them for you. Its expensive - really expensive.

But D&D just gets rid of all that fun and lets people find kings ransoms worth of gold and click their fingers to get what they want.



Exactly what I was getting at.

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas
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sleyvas
Great Reader

USA
6922 Posts

Posted - 12 Feb 2018 :  13:03:22  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by dazzlerdal

So Halaster would probably cry at the thoughy of paying for all the weird stuff he needs to make these items.



Huh? The man is damn near immortal, has cleared out entire communities -- one of which was a drow community! -- in his efforts to build a new playground for himself, has cast probably tens of thousands of spells to make his playground work the way he wants, has mastered translocational magics, has liberally sprinkled magic and money all over his playground, trained a bunch of apprentices who are major threats on their own (one of them became Magister!) and spends his days just happily popping about the place, watching the fun, and resetting stuff that adventurers had done.

This guy has no concern whatsoever for money. The spell components for just the warding magics permeating Undermountain would likely bankrupt some nations of the Realms multiple times over -- assuming he actually needed to buy them, and didn't have some workaround or alternate source.



He got this kind of power because he is resourceful, not because he's wasteful. Its the same story with many rich people here (note I say many and not all). They generally made it rich by finding a way to make better use of the resources available to them. In the case of Halaster, he's figured out a way to entrap fiends into magic items. He also knows of the energy transformation spell, and he's known to use it to use it to setup his wards down in undermountain. Basically, he's a man who has got the idea of "I can take this source to power that end, I just need a converter in the middle". So, whereas a lot of other people would stick in the standard power source that costs more and is a lot more stable... he takes a shortcut that saves him time and money, but is a ton more dangerous.

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas
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LordofBones
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656 Posts

Posted - 12 Feb 2018 :  13:46:25  Show Profile Send LordofBones a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I still don't get why people are complaining about the economy in a game where spellcasters break the economy with standard PHB spells. The Forgotten Realms works on the assumption that the town smith hasn't been put out of business by a wizard with fabricate. The entire game works on the assumption that the more powerful you are, the richer you end up. The cushion on Elminster's favorite chair is probably worth all of Shadowdale.

As an adventurer, you're generally expected to have a certain amount of magical items as the game scales higher and higher. It's fine if you're 5th level or something (or playing an E6 game) where your fighter getting King Storm's Greatsword of Headsplitting (a +1 keen longsword) is the reward for an ardous quest, but I doubt your players are going to find it very funny if you insist on arbitrary reagents or inflated gold requirements for a +5 flaming longsword or a headband of intellect +6 in a 20th level game.

In a world filled with magocracies, magic schools and magic marts, I'm left wondering why people think that magic should be something out of a Robert E. Howard novel. If anything, I'd expect something like Eberron.

Wooly is right. Halaster is 30th level. Wealth is trivial for him. His tattered black robes probably cost more than Waterdeep.
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
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USA
30983 Posts

Posted - 12 Feb 2018 :  15:32:07  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by sleyvas

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by sleyvas

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

But with non-fiendish teleportation possible, why go thru all the effort of involving fiends in making teleporting rings?



Cheaper in time and resources to make the rings. I see Halaster/Hilather and the Imaskari as having maybe used a lot of "shortcuts" when it came to magic item creation by instilling an actual magic creature into things and powering them via the creature's own innate magic.



So it's cheaper in time and resources to summon a fiend, bind it to a ring, do something about the fact it's going to resist all this *and* that it has innate resistance to overcome, as opposed to just casting a single spell?



Yes. Its "cheaper" because it doesn't necessarily need to draw on the weave as much. Its "powered" by the creature.



So it's less magic to summon something from another plane, and bind it to an object in a way that overcomes its inherent resistance while stripping away the rest of its powers and its intellect, as opposed to casting a single spell of less power?

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LordofBones
Senior Scribe

656 Posts

Posted - 12 Feb 2018 :  16:33:07  Show Profile Send LordofBones a Private Message  Reply with Quote
"I'm going to bind this balor to this rock and make him teleport me around" strikes me as a good way for things to go horribly wrong.

Teleport doesn't even have a material component, so the symbolism is meaningless. Archons can also greater teleport at will.

The funny thing is that teleportation is not even a native fiendish ability; they get it from the maeldur.

Edited by - LordofBones on 12 Feb 2018 16:41:20
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sleyvas
Great Reader

USA
6922 Posts

Posted - 12 Feb 2018 :  19:50:28  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by sleyvas

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by sleyvas

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

But with non-fiendish teleportation possible, why go thru all the effort of involving fiends in making teleporting rings?



Cheaper in time and resources to make the rings. I see Halaster/Hilather and the Imaskari as having maybe used a lot of "shortcuts" when it came to magic item creation by instilling an actual magic creature into things and powering them via the creature's own innate magic.



So it's cheaper in time and resources to summon a fiend, bind it to a ring, do something about the fact it's going to resist all this *and* that it has innate resistance to overcome, as opposed to just casting a single spell?



Yes. Its "cheaper" because it doesn't necessarily need to draw on the weave as much. Its "powered" by the creature.



So it's less magic to summon something from another plane, and bind it to an object in a way that overcomes its inherent resistance while stripping away the rest of its powers and its intellect, as opposed to casting a single spell of less power?



When you make a magic ring, there's a cost associated. Let's just say for the sake of this argument that that "cost" is 100 thousand gold. Said cost is NOT the cost of the ring, but rather some kind of special reagents (gems, blood, etc...). In this instance, those "reagents" could be a living fiend that's "spirit" is bound into a ring. In this concept, you don't have to come up with reagents that would actually cost you money (for instance, if you had to buy powdered gems). Instead you "cut corners" and bind a living fiend that can teleport, knowing that there is some way to free said being, and when freed they may become a nuisance to you.

So, making a horned ring isn't just casting a single spell.

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas
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TBeholder
Master of Realmslore

1583 Posts

Posted - 12 Feb 2018 :  20:07:08  Show Profile Send TBeholder a Private Message  Reply with Quote
There are all sort of rules for items with independent intellect and/or bound creatures. Those rules tend to be messy. As they should be.
Horned rings just teleport, and that's all. You'd think there would be something about detect evil/protection from evil, or side effects like "if destroyed (e.g. it was dropped in acid and failed saving throw), the ring releases a creature screaming profanities and trying to bite face off the nearest character [statblock]".

People never wonder How the world goes round -Helloween
And even I make no pretense Of having more than common sense -R.W.Wood
It's not good, Eric. It's a gazebo. -Ed Whitchurch
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Markustay
Realms Explorer extraordinaire

USA
15654 Posts

Posted - 12 Feb 2018 :  20:15:41  Show Profile Send Markustay a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I started-out playing T&T (which barely had rules), and went straight to Chivalry & Sorcery (because thats what happens when you are gaming at FGU headquarters!). So basically, I went from, "there are no rules!", to, "did you make your series of 'morning rolls' when you wok-up? Ah, good... you have a toothache today, do you?" And YEAH, they actually had tables like that. It was probably the most insanely detailed and over-simulated game I've ever seen (which is saying a LOT, if you've ever tried playing some of FGU's other offers, like Aftermath, or Space Opera. All of which I loved, BTW, and at least one has stood the test of time - Villains & Vigilantes.

ANYWAY... C&S's system was based on RW Medieval Europe. You know, the one where JUST FIVE GOLD PIECES financed an entire crusade! Gold was practically unheard of, and silver was considered for 'rich folks'. A peasant could go their entire lives without ever seeing a single silver piece. Coppers were cut-up to make smaller 'bits'. Imagine my shock when I eventually had to switch over to D&D. "Okay, you guys killed the dragon, and you find 17 dumptrucks filled with gold...". D&D economics are broken. BADLY broken. I've tried to apply RW/C&S economics to my D&D/FR games and it just doesn't work. I can tone it down quite a bit, but without completely rebuilding all the equipment tables you just can't do it. We have to just go with 'all adventurers are rich' and that's just how it goes. Adventurers purposely risk their lives fighting monsters - something normal humans wouldn't even consider. Its a 'high risk' job. Death isn't an 'if', its a WHEN. And if resurrection was harder, I doubt there would be as many adventurers in the world as we have (no NPC ones, anyway). Do you still lose a level when you res? They should go back to that, if not. It should cost something. In the anime I was watching (Log Horizon) they even explain that - you lose part of your memories. There is an entire raid-Guild that are just 'empty shells' - they've got no memory of anything anymore; all they know how to do is keep raiding (and dying).

So yeah, "with big risks comes big bucks" - that sort of thing. Adventurers should be as wealthy as any noble - some even far wealthier (if you live long enough - very few adventurers get to die of old age).

But in the REAL Medieval world, if you rode into a village with a Silver Piece, you wouldn't just be sleeping in some farmer's barn. You'd be sleeping in his bed, with his wife, and probably all his daughters, and he'd be merrily staring at his lovely silver piece out in the barn. Because that's reality. D&D is far from it.

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


Edited by - Markustay on 12 Feb 2018 20:20:24
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
30983 Posts

Posted - 12 Feb 2018 :  21:04:27  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by sleyvas


When you make a magic ring, there's a cost associated. Let's just say for the sake of this argument that that "cost" is 100 thousand gold. Said cost is NOT the cost of the ring, but rather some kind of special reagents (gems, blood, etc...). In this instance, those "reagents" could be a living fiend that's "spirit" is bound into a ring. In this concept, you don't have to come up with reagents that would actually cost you money (for instance, if you had to buy powdered gems). Instead you "cut corners" and bind a living fiend that can teleport, knowing that there is some way to free said being, and when freed they may become a nuisance to you.

So, making a horned ring isn't just casting a single spell.




What I'm questioning is your assertion that it's cheaper to cast a spell to summon a fiend, and then to cast another spell to bind it to a ring, stripped of all intelligence and abilities save for one... And in both cases you've got innate resistance to overcome and someone rather unwilling to be reduced to a single spell effect. And that all of that is cheaper than just the single teleport spell, by itself.

There is also the issue of why this would be appealing. Even if it was somehow cheaper -- which I can't see -- why would that matter to someone casting tens of thousands of spells to build a playground to watch others try to get rich in?

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Markustay
Realms Explorer extraordinaire

USA
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Posted - 12 Feb 2018 :  23:37:27  Show Profile Send Markustay a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Except the rings have nothing to do with a teleport spell. Well, almost nothing.

What they do is allow someone to cast a teleport spell without problems, thereby circumnavigating Halaster's Mythal-wards. In other words, it is allowing someone to find their way through something without a problem, when it normally would be a big problem getting through that thing. The teleport itself is secondary.

This is why I say connecting the rings to Minotaurs is much more logical, because of what they ARE doing, not the spell they facilitate.

EDIT:
Can we just forget about the fiends? LOL!
Seriously, I thought it would be an interesting bit of lore to connect their teleports to their horns (since they seem useless for anything else, in most cases). Almost like an 'GPS' antennae. But no-one seemed to like it so lets just let it go.

Besides... I want to save that for something... its too kewl to waste on WotC...

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


Edited by - Markustay on 12 Feb 2018 23:40:30
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LordofBones
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656 Posts

Posted - 13 Feb 2018 :  01:38:40  Show Profile Send LordofBones a Private Message  Reply with Quote
That's teleport + passwall, or teleport + greater dispel magic, or teleport + discern location, or teleport + antimagic field. Undermountain only has one maze level; I guess one ring could be keyed to that particular level. Minotaurs are immune to maze spells, but have nothing to do with teleport effects.
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The Masked Mage
Master of Realmslore

USA
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Posted - 13 Feb 2018 :  03:08:56  Show Profile  Send The Masked Mage an AOL message  Click to see The Masked Mage's MSN Messenger address Send The Masked Mage a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Ok - since this scroll is not so much about economy and really about the theoretical purpose of the horns, lets end that nowhere leading debate :P.


Also - since no one seems to actually know what horned rings do, here is their description, written by Ed so long ago:

Horned Ring
XP Value: 3,000
GP Value: 35,000
Fashioned by Halaster, these iron rings are normally found only in Undermountain. Pairs of tiny curved horns rise from
such a ring, the horns curling out and back toward the wearer's finger. Horned rings function as "teleport rings" within the dungeons of Undermountain (see below), though the wearers can arrive at different locations. The wearers can specifically
define their "arrival" areas. They also break all wizard locks, walls of force, holds, webs, and other magical barriers (except
prismatic sphere and prismatic wall) on contact; no harm comes to the wearer while disrupting magical barriers. They absorb
magic missiles and all electrical spells and natural effects to re-power themselves, without allowing these effects to harm the wearer.

There are only 8 of these rings known to exist, and nearly all are accounted for among Halaster's ex-apprentices. Jhesiyra
Kestellharp also had a horned ring in her possession, but its current whereabouts are unknown.



Halaster's Teleport Ring
XP Value: 1,000
GP Value: 4,000
These plain brass finger-rings were once common in the Realms, but are now very rare. They enabled any wearer to teleport without error from a current location to a predetermined spot on the same plane, either by speaking a command word or through activation by
force of will.
Teleport rings affect only the one creature wearing them. The few that are in Undermountain are placed there by Halaster: unlike the more powerful horned rings (see above) of his devising, all the teleport rings found in the halls are cursed. They transport the wearer's to a single location upon the wearers speaking of a command word: "Athlas" (which means "lost" in a Northern dialect of long
ago, familiar to the wizard). Their destination is Room #70, the Cavern of the Throne on Undermountain's Level Three

The characters arrive facing the throne itself from the bottom of the steps leading up to it. The teleport rings in Undermountain
are further tainted by Halaster's cruel sense of humor: the user arrives stripped of all clothing and belongings, including magical items such as the teleport ring itself. The ring's magic scatters such objects at random all over Undermountain, where some may never be found. As always, these secondary effects are used at the discretion of the DM; of course, Halaster is not known for discretion or fairness himself...



In short, not only are these items incredibly rare - and guarded by powerful evil wizards who are masters of levels of Undermountain - they are also arguably the most useful item anyone could have in Undermountain. They are the GET OUT OF JAIL FREE card of Undermountain. Anyone who ever has been a PC campaigning in Halaster's Halls knows that pretty much every day there is a moment when you wish you could have one.

Also, the rings are what teleports without error (greater teleport for you young kids :P). This bypasses all of Halaster's magics set to prevent free teleporting in Undermountain. PURE GOLD

As if this were not enough, the ring also defends the wearer from the 2 most common magical attacks one will face in undermountain: magic missiles and lightning bolts. MORE PURE GOLD

Then you throw in its also a ring of free action. What's more - the horned ring lets you walk right through all but the most powerful magical wards without issue. Wall of force? No problem. Door wizard locked by an archmage? No problem. HUGE STEAMING PILE OF GOLD NUGGETS :D

Perhaps the only item in Undermountain that's more useful is the Naga Crown - which was kind of co-opted by later editions with serpent kingdoms.
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Markustay
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USA
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Posted - 13 Feb 2018 :  05:23:32  Show Profile Send Markustay a Private Message  Reply with Quote
The thing is, they've since changed it so the rings themselves don't provide the teleport. All that does is give you 'free passage' through the labyrinth that is Undermountain (in other words, teleport spells you cast work fine - all the ring is is a 'key' to the mythal... a 'cheat code').

quote:
Originally posted by LordofBones

That's teleport + passwall, or teleport + greater dispel magic, or teleport + discern location, or teleport + antimagic field. Undermountain only has one maze level; I guess one ring could be keyed to that particular level. Minotaurs are immune to maze spells, but have nothing to do with teleport effects.
I am currently beating my head against a wall here.

I keep saying ITS NOT ABOUT THE TELEPORT ITSELF. Thats a separate bit of magic. Any asshat with the right feats and levels can make a stupid teleport ring.

This thread is about trying to provide flavor for a ring that enables a teleport spell to do something it normally can't - circumnavigate Halaster's 'lair'.

I know of a creature that has a natural ability that functions along those lines, that happens to have horns. Sorry I brought it up. Lets just say there is absolutely no reason why he named them that.


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


Edited by - Markustay on 13 Feb 2018 05:24:17
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LordofBones
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656 Posts

Posted - 13 Feb 2018 :  05:48:39  Show Profile Send LordofBones a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Markustay

The thing is, they've since changed it so the rings themselves don't provide the teleport. All that does is give you 'free passage' through the labyrinth that is Undermountain (in other words, teleport spells you cast work fine - all the ring is is a 'key' to the mythal... a 'cheat code').

quote:
Originally posted by LordofBones

That's teleport + passwall, or teleport + greater dispel magic, or teleport + discern location, or teleport + antimagic field. Undermountain only has one maze level; I guess one ring could be keyed to that particular level. Minotaurs are immune to maze spells, but have nothing to do with teleport effects.
I am currently beating my head against a wall here.

I keep saying ITS NOT ABOUT THE TELEPORT ITSELF. Thats a separate bit of magic. Any asshat with the right feats and levels can make a stupid teleport ring.

This thread is about trying to provide flavor for a ring that enables a teleport spell to do something it normally can't - circumnavigate Halaster's 'lair'.

I know of a creature that has a natural ability that functions along those lines, that happens to have horns. Sorry I brought it up. Lets just say there is absolutely no reason why he named them that.





As a DM, I'd rule that the creator needs to own the lair you're trying to circumnavigate, or that the rings are keyed to a master ring that Halaster holds, so he can divert the teleportation effect, or at least immediately knows who and what's trying to teleport in.

Not trying to disparage you or anything, but given that the rings are localized to just one place, I'd waive the creature component and assume that the rings were made with the caster's crystallized blood or had to be left for a year and a day in the one place in Undermountain where Halaster was most vulnerable, or something.
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Ayrik
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Canada
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Posted - 13 Feb 2018 :  09:55:02  Show Profile Send Ayrik a Private Message  Reply with Quote
There can be any number of the cursed/flawed Halaster's Teleport Rings. They could save your life, even though most D&D players actually fear losing all their items far more than they fear death.

But there's only eight of the potent Horned Rings. Clearly only intended to be used (and only crafted) by Halaster and his apprentices.

This "Horned" version must actually be very difficult to create, any magical item with so many magical properties would be, so the "cursed" versions might simply be all those artificing attempts which weren't successful.

The limited number (only eight) even suggests limited availability of some exotic component. Something fiendish, no doubt. Perhaps the actual essence of a powerful horned fiend being forever dispersed, merged into, and bound within the confines of Undermountain itself.

And while they technically aren't artifacts, their power and rarity does invite some of the consequences attached to artifacts. Namely, they are eagerly sought and much coveted by others, items of legendary power - more valuable than all the other treasures of Undermountain combined! - so sooner or later somebody will somehow find a way to locate and claim them. Somebody capable. Perhaps archmagi, dragons, fiends, or worse.

[/Ayrik]
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sleyvas
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Posted - 13 Feb 2018 :  14:26:42  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
They absorb magic missiles and all electrical spells and natural effects to re-power themselves, without allowing these effects to harm the wearer.

Just noting here, another instance where its noted that one of the big things Halaster does is use one power source to fund another. His energy transformation spells are all about funding other spell effects.

You know, thinking on this... I know the rules don't allow for it, and I know the point is moot in 5e... but if ANYONE on Toril fit the bill of "they've discovered the means to source magic from both the weave and the shadow weave"... I think Halaster would fit that bill. Even his madness could be seen as him not worshipping Shar and having to take on the effects of the shadow weave. In fact, one of the things he may do to protect himself is that when he's in Undermountain, maybe he's usually in a dead magic area to the weave.

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas
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Wooly Rupert
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Posted - 13 Feb 2018 :  15:43:26  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Ayrik



The limited number (only eight) even suggests limited availability of some exotic component.



I would disagree -- he gave these to his apprentices. The number of rings made was limited to those who needed them.

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Markustay
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Posted - 13 Feb 2018 :  18:43:06  Show Profile Send Markustay a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I agree. There was a very solid reason for that number.

quote:
Originally posted by sleyvas

They absorb magic missiles and all electrical spells and natural effects to re-power themselves, without allowing these effects to harm the wearer.

Just noting here, another instance where its noted that one of the big things Halaster does is use one power source to fund another. His energy transformation spells are all about funding other spell effects.

You know, thinking on this... I know the rules don't allow for it, and I know the point is moot in 5e... but if ANYONE on Toril fit the bill of "they've discovered the means to source magic from both the weave and the shadow weave"... I think Halaster would fit that bill. Even his madness could be seen as him not worshipping Shar and having to take on the effects of the shadow weave. In fact, one of the things he may do to protect himself is that when he's in Undermountain, maybe he's usually in a dead magic area to the weave.

Interesting line of reasoning.

Especially when we consider that Selūne & Shar were really just one goddess that went nuts (and then we have an echo of that, when Tyche split into Beshaba & Tymora - I have to wonder if the 'Dawn Cataclysm' had anything to do with the 'Dawn War').

The only thing I don't like about this concept is that it reeks of SW - Light Side/Dark Side, and how it makes you 'lose your mind' a bit when you try to juggle both (as Anakin did). Do you think Halaster killed younglings?

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


Edited by - Markustay on 13 Feb 2018 18:43:47
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sleyvas
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Posted - 14 Feb 2018 :  00:02:58  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Markustay

I agree. There was a very solid reason for that number.

quote:
Originally posted by sleyvas

They absorb magic missiles and all electrical spells and natural effects to re-power themselves, without allowing these effects to harm the wearer.

Just noting here, another instance where its noted that one of the big things Halaster does is use one power source to fund another. His energy transformation spells are all about funding other spell effects.

You know, thinking on this... I know the rules don't allow for it, and I know the point is moot in 5e... but if ANYONE on Toril fit the bill of "they've discovered the means to source magic from both the weave and the shadow weave"... I think Halaster would fit that bill. Even his madness could be seen as him not worshipping Shar and having to take on the effects of the shadow weave. In fact, one of the things he may do to protect himself is that when he's in Undermountain, maybe he's usually in a dead magic area to the weave.

Interesting line of reasoning.

Especially when we consider that Selūne & Shar were really just one goddess that went nuts (and then we have an echo of that, when Tyche split into Beshaba & Tymora - I have to wonder if the 'Dawn Cataclysm' had anything to do with the 'Dawn War').

The only thing I don't like about this concept is that it reeks of SW - Light Side/Dark Side, and how it makes you 'lose your mind' a bit when you try to juggle both (as Anakin did). Do you think Halaster killed younglings?



Hell The better question is, do you think he DIDN'T?

Yes, it does reek of such. That being said, doesn't Elminster in Hell have something about Halaster and Shar? I could very much be wrong. I went to the Wiki though and I at least see this. I fully admit my memory of that book is hazy at best. Apparently in it though Mystra tries to "cure Halaster of his insanity". Perhaps this is when she gives him the ability to access the weave again?

Along these lines, I half wonder if his death weren't some kind of attempt to change the source of many of his many effects in Undermountain to pulling from the weave instead of the shadow weave, and something went wrong. I wouldn't want to nail that into the coffin yet though.

From the Wiki on Halaster
In 1372 DR when Elminster was inadvertently sent to hell while defending the Dalelands from the Shadovar. Mystra made a bargain with Halaster, that she would try to cure his insanity if he rescued Elminster from hell. Halaster agreed, and entered Avernus. Though he was unsuccessful, and had to be rescued in turn by Alassra Silverhand, Mystra kept her word, and managed to partially cure him. (She then proceeded to blast Asmodeus with Halaster's insanity.)

<also this>

Shortly after dawn on Eleint 30, 1375 DR, an earthquake struck Waterdeep. Though the city suffered little damage, many people throughout the town saw visions of Halaster screaming, his eyes ablaze with rage, sorrow, and swimming stars. Arcanists who saw the visions also reported scenes of destruction in the vast maze of Undermountain: pillars cracking and crumbling, chasms and rifts opening, and explosions of sparks. Those brave enough to investigate quickly discovered that Halaster had inadvertently killed himself while attempting a powerful ritual; as he died, he hurled desperate visions and compulsions to people all across the continent.

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas
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Markustay
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Posted - 14 Feb 2018 :  01:07:13  Show Profile Send Markustay a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Mystra tries to 'help' Halster fight for Elminster, and he sadly looks at her and say, "I can't... I am Shar's creature now..."

At which point she reaches into his head, grabs 'the crazy' right out of him (the shadow-stuff thats corrupting him?), and hurls it INTO Asmodeus.

And Asmodeus has a momentary 'senior moment', and Mystra grabs El and runs. She literally 'infected' Asmodeus with Halaster's insanity, which was enough to give one of the most ancient and powerful beings in the multiverse... pause. That tells you how strong Halaster's mind must be just for him to keep it the little bit 'together' he has been all these years.

Two things we get out of that - whatever was corrupting/tainting Halaster's mind might not be there anymore (if and when he gets put back together), or it might be greatly diminished, and its also something Mystra recognizes and is familiar with (she used it as a damn weapon!), so yeah, more clues that somehow 'shadow' is some sort of infection in FR/D&D, or rather, a person's shadow can become infected with 'umbral energies' (even a god). To someone like Asmodeus, it was probably just a momentary 'bad taste in his mouth' (its not like more evil is going to do anything permanent to him)

The second thing we get is that Mystra 'got over' on Asmodeus, within his own Realm. Once he realized that, don't you think he would want to teach her a lesson? And now that he's had a 'taste' of her (one half of her, anyway), maybe that gave him just what he needed to set his own plans in motion to grab Azuth when the time was right, eh? Or maybe... Halaster had just enough 'Shar-iness' inside his head that Asmodeus got an inkling of the plan to kill Mystra (which was decades in the making), so he made sure he 'got his cut' when it all went down. Nobody cheats the Devil, not even Shar & Mystra.

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


Edited by - Markustay on 14 Feb 2018 01:19:32
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