Showing posts from December, 2019

Alternate Oerths - Mythic Greyhawk: More on Iuz

First, a little sidenote further on the nature of gods from Appendix A in  Temple of Elemental Evil.  Here we get a full list of deities and they are classified in three: "Greater", of which there are roughly a dozen, "lesser", of which there are many, and "demigods", of which there's a handful.  Looking at the number and nature of the greater gods, it tallies well with my assumption that lesser gods are the kind of embodied, fallible deities who busy themselves with human affairs I discussed in my previous article , whilst greater gods are genuinely transcendent; pantheon fountainheads. more akin to sentient cosmic principle than to the kind of "divinely endowed people" the lesser gods are. With that out of the way, on to Iuz... Representing Iuz the Old as something more out of a slavic mythic north, a la  Koschei the Deathless The description of Iuz in the Folio as "Old Iuz of fear-babe talk", who has ruled the lan

Alternate Oerths - Mythic Greyhawk: Deities & Demi-gods

I already wrote about the deities and pantheons of Mythic Greyhawk before , but after reading Dragon Magazine #67's article The Deities & Demigods of the World of Greyhawk  I'm inspired to doodle a bit more about this, taking the implications of that article as a springboard. The first thing that jumps at me from that article is the initial coverage of the nature of gods. We are told what kind of spell-like abilities gods of various statures have. Each of the four deities (Heironeous, Hextor, Iuz & St. Cuthbert) are statted out as conventional (albeit powerful) critters who, apart from being deities of certain things, can be encountered and killed like any other. We learn this from the note stating how Iuz has a soul object  secreted away in the abyss that leaves him free to roam outside his domain with no fear of permanent harm. No mention of 'avatars', or other divine trappings of later editions. From left to right: Heironeous; Hextor; Iuz & St. C

Alternate Oerths - Mythic Greyhawk: Central Flanaess

The central Flanaess. Home of the city of Greyhawk & the Nyr Dyv; the Wild Coast, Fyrondy and Veluna; Celene & the Pomarj; the Urnst states. Verbobonc & Dyvers; the bandit kingdoms and shield lands. Also desert. When I wrote a review of the Darlene maps , I scribbled this about the central regions: Appealingly, the 'safer' area to go through from old Aerdy East to Old Aerdy West is adventuring area numero uno - The Wild Coast. I love its placement on the map and its relations on the map. Anywhere is in feasible reach for an adventurer on the wild coast. The Nyr Dyv and Wooly Bay gives you plenty of means of getting around. For adventurers in the Wild Coast, the Flanaess is your oyster. The whole Nyr Dyv/Wooly Bay/Relmor Bay area is just really well constructed for bringing these lands into contact with each other and opening routes of travel. No wonder the City of Greyhawk is such a big fish - The Nyr Dyv is obviously a really central area. The rivers flowin

Alternate Oerths - Mythic Greyhawk: The North

My thoughts have returned to Mythic Greyhawk and fleshing it out a bit more.  I like the north, geographically speaking, in Greyhawk. It strikes me as a region with its own distinct life and character. A good mixture of barbarian 'nations', some not-lawful kingdoms (Bandit kingdoms), large swathes of unforgiving wilderness, definite chaos lands of variable flavors (Iuz, Horned Society, Stonefist) and some lawful lands on its borders (Shield Lands, Tenh, Ratik, Blackmoor). In other words, a savage borderland with plenty of potential for adventure in lands where Law exists mostly on the edges. The vibe I am getting from its barbarian cultures strike me as a bit dull though. I'm pretty sure what the reader is meant to take from the folio is that wolf & tiger nomads are turko-central-asian horse nomads, ice/frost/snow are vikings and and rovers are northern native americans. Wolf and tiger nomads strike me as especially dull, since that trope is already covered

More Thoughts on How to Run a Proper Dragonlance Campaign (and how it all went wrong)

One of the blog entries I find myself returning to is the one I wrote about  Dragonlance being a unique sandbox setting . I ran it as a kid and it's a campaign I'd love to run again as an adult. Here are my thoughts on where it all went wrong for Dragonlance and how to fix it to run a proper campaign that feels  like a dragonlance campaign. My main frustration with Dragonlance as a setting is how unrealised its gaming potential is.  There's the issue of the novels, obviously, and the iffiness of how to set them aside in a way that makes the world more open to player characters.  And how the original adventure that mirror the novels kind of ends up being the only story worth telling in the setting. It's not of course, but the setting has continuously struggled with its identity as a gaming  world in light of this. How to escape the novels and make the setting itself greater than the original adventure path? They've tried, but the attempts have been ha