Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Future Timeline 1/1

Date sent: Thu, 16 Oct 1997 16:16:00 -0400
Send reply to: The GREYtalk Discussion List
From: Jay Simpson
Subject: [GREYTALK] Future Timeline 1/1
To: GREYTALK@MITVMA.MIT.EDU

This is the first post of several I intend. This is a tiny exerpt from a timeline I am working on. I thought I would start sending stuff to this list for your approval. Many of my ideas came from you folks on the list. As well as other NET resources. I have no intentions of claiming any kind of glory or any such, and this timelime has been written solely for the use as background information in my own campaign set in669 CY. Any of you may use any of this asyou wish.

Jay Simpson

585 The general's attempt to infiltrate Rel Deven is thwarted. Meural and the remains of the Almor-Medegian army reach Rel Deven. Carwen establishes the Council of the Crandens as a permanent body. The Patriarch of Hextor is poisoned in Rel Astra. At the same time, members of the Scarlet Brotherhood appear in the city. Ahlissa declares full independence. The second youngest son of the Duke of Chathold dies somewhere in the Great Kingdom. Szeffrin gathers great numbers of orcs for his army and conquers the citadel of Goldbolt, forcing the Cranden border southwards. Drax builds ships. In the autumn of this year Carwen becomes very ill.

Euroz and Vile Rune Orcs begin fighting for control of the Bone March. They are both ousted though when the Zhorez tribe and Rotted Skull tribes ally and form a third faction. The Euroz somehow manage to ally and take control of these two new tribes. Vile Rune, rather than face extinction, join under the Euroz banner as well. The leader of the four tribes, a self proclaimed king, is a powerful orc named Gruznor Bloodspiller.

586 In an aggressive campaign, King Tavish V of Keoland sends armies under command of his favorite General Begnell into Geoff and Sterich. General Bagnell marches first on Geoff and Geoff is liberated rather easily in a surprise attack at the Battle of Gorna, which catches the evil forces there quite unaware. Bagnell is able to sneak his main attack force through the Stark Mounds while sending a token diversionary force through the Oyt Wood. The two forces meet at Gorna and claim it within a fortnight. Once nested in Gorna, Bagnell is able to direct several successful attacks against humanoid forces held up in the Hornwood. These raids are very successful and Bagnell becomes a celebrated hero in the home courts of Niole Dra, where he rapidly becomes know for his aggressive and relentless methods. Before the grip of winter can settle in, General Bagnell returns to Niole Dra late this summer to summon more troops. He leaves a young General by the name of Drogan Hazifax in command of the troops of Gorna. General Halifax is widely known through Keoland as the youngest commanding General in the Royal Army. Many nobles think that it is a mistake for Bagnell to leave such a young and inexperienced General in command of such an important outpost. Bagnell ignores all of the nobles jibes. Brewfest of this year finds General Bagnell commanding a new host of soldiers stationed in the Good Hills just south of Flen. Bagnell fords the Javan and begins a forced march on Istivin. At the same time General Hazifax begins another aggressive march, called a Cleansing, into the Hornwood and eventually south across the Stark Mounds. Both forces eventually meet at Istivin, beginning a swift siege on the city. The token force of Giants evacuate the city and allow the duel Keoland armies to occupy the city. Two weeks later, however, a stronger force of Humanoids and Giants along with obvious Drow aid reclaim the City of Istivin. This counter offensive was expected by General Bagnell, and he like the Giants before him vacate the city. This time, however, the surprise comes from Keoland's prized General's mind. While Bagnell and his men evacuate the city, Hazifax and his men secretly hide within the city in secret tunnels and cellars rapidly dug throughout the city during their short time of occupation. This was possible due to Hazifax owning two magical items instrumental in rapid tunneling and earthen construction. When the Evil forces moved in to occupy the city, Bagnell turned 180 degrees and renewed his siege. As the Giant/Humanoid/Drow forces settled in, prepared for a lengthy siege, Hazifax and his troops attacked from within. The Evil forces were unprepared for this surprise and were slaughtered after a week long city wide purge. Most of Istivin was burnt during this offensive, and while Hazifax took his men back north to Gorna, Bagnell elects to winter over in Istivin, to aid in the reconstruction process.

Ratik attempts an invasion into the Bone March to stop Gruznor before he can gain too much power. The Ratik forces are beaten back mercilessly, and suffer many heavy losses. Gruznor begins to form and alliance with the Ogre and Gnoll tribes in the Rakers, and the Hobgobin tribes in the Flinty Hills. When news of this impending alliance reaches the courts of Nyrond it is laughed at. While those remaining in the North Province choose to ignore the growing threat, thinking it will die out soon.

587 The Drow/Giant Alliance renews it s attacks on Istivin and poisons the Davish River with the dead. Bagnell settles in and waits for the forthcoming siege. Hazifax sees renewed fighting near the Hornwood as well and is unable to send any troops to aid Bagnell.

Orc King Gruznor of the Bone March, seizes Ratikhill and takes control of the Loftwood in a fierce winter campaign. Refugees of Ratikhill report that the humanoid forces seem more prepared for the weather and conditions than in the past. Gruznor demands aid from the Herzog of the North Province, Grenell. This aid does not come, but Herzog Grenell does promise not to interfere with Gruznor s conquest of Ratik. Gruznor begins slashing the Loftwood in a swift ship building campaign.

588 Turrosh Mak launches a final offensive. This time his forces are better equipped and better armed. The combined armies of the Ulek States were no match for the massive horde of humanoids that swept up out of the Pomarj. The Pomarj armies sweep through the Ulek States in a matter of months, leaving nothing but carnage in their wake. Turrosh and his ravenous horde claim Gryrax, Havenhill, and Jurnre before Growfest arrives, and by the end of that same festival Tringle has fallen. His armies then press north, claiming all the lands east of the Sheldomar north to the Lort River near Waybury. Pomarj armies can be seen dancing on the shore across the Sheldomar late into the night, celebrating their new found territory. The survivors of the blitz run to Keoland, [some text missing?], but Keoland is unable to send aid. Tavish V had made a fatal error. Believing the Pomarj to no longer be threat and the rumors of Turrosh Mak s death to be true, Tavish had routed most of his forces to his western front so that Hazifax and Bagnell could better be supported in their efforts their. The Humanoids and Giants hadn t quite given up on there possibility of having a strong outpost in the Flanaess and both of the Generals were entrenched in their respective cities fighting a long drawn out Giant War. The refugees of the Ulek States eventually scatter, most of them migrating to Veluna, Furyondy, and Highfolk.

Rabid waves of Bone March humanoids fall on Bellport in the early spring months of this year. Gruznor was able to take Bellport so easy due to the orcs in Grenell s standing army already stationed there siding with Gruznor. Bellport s mines are captured, and a serious blow is dealt to the North Province. Meanwhile Gruznor sends many "expendable" troops towards Kaport Bay, Eastfair, Edge Field and Atirr. The orcs under command of the Herzog rebel against their North Province leaders and ally with the Bone March troops. While these troops number in the thousands, they are not meant to return home. These forces are sent in clusters of a few hundred each, and scatter themselves across the remains of the North Province. For the most part these clusters are missed by paranoid patrols, and none of the clusters begin causing problems until they are well within enemy territory.

589 Orc King Gruzno slowly begins expanding his borders south of Bellport. The thousands of Humanoids stationed there advance and claim about a mile a day. Meanwhile, Gruznor s troops based out of Ratikhill are slowly advancing towards Marner. Gruznor also secures his holdings in Knurl as well as fortifying himself in the Flinty Hills. To accomplish this last task, Gruznor grants "Lordships" to some of his most loyal "generals" and they in turn migrate with their various clans to the Flinty Hills. Gruznor also offers higher pay to those of his soldiers that can produce the most offspring. This results in a population explosion in the Bone March of Orcs. No retribution comes from any forces in the North Province as their wicked leaders still fail to consider Gruznor a threat. Nyrond, however, begins to take notice. Gruznor loyalists clash with a token Nyrondese border patrol in the Flinty Hills during the late fall of this year. While the Nyrondese troops prove the victors, they return home with only half their original number. Nyrond opts not to force a conflict with this new force in the Bone March, since it seems evident that Gruznor will take the North Province.

590 In a surprise rush, thousands of Orcs under Iuz s banner catch the Vesve folk unaware. The Orcan hordes attack from every direction, even from tunnels beneath the ground. Iuz is finally able to capture much of the Vesve Forest. In a decisive battle west of Crockport, where Iuz forces over run key positions throughout the Vesve, thousands of good aligned folk die horrible deaths at the hands of Iuz s demonic spawned troops and feral orcs. Using the Vesve Iuz is able to break through Furyondian lines in one concerted effort and begin laying siege to Chendl. Many more humans are seen fighting on Iuz s side, and rumors of artifact level magic on the Old One s side run rampant throughout the Flanaess. As the Peace of Greyhawk is obviously now broken, armies all across the land begin preparing for march. Alliances are doubted and shifty eyes are everywhere.

Even as Iuz is laying siege to Chendl, there is an uprising in Rookroost. Many revolutionary battles are fought but the token forces are severely dealt with by Iuz troops. Redspan becomes an influential and key position as does Rookroost itself. The Fall of this year sees troops from both the Pale and the County of Urnst crossing the Artonsomay. It is curious to note that nothing is heard from Nyrond in the early days of this, the Second Great War.

By High Summer, Gruznor has expanded the Bone March s borders as far as Kaport Bay, taking that very weakened city in under a month. Gruznor fortifies a line from Knurl to Kaport Bay, building orcan burrows and villages approximately every 10 miles or so. In these burrows the Orcs nest in and continue their rapid period of production. Gruznor follows through with his promise, and uses the spoils taken from Bellport and Kaport Bay to pay his troops for
[Page missing]
blatantly disagrees and takes Stoink as a safe measure, fortifying the city in the process.

Nyrond, unsure of where the next attack is going to come from, sits and waits. Fortifying already well established strongholds and building the army bigger.

596 The first evidence of a Pomarj Navy is discovered when Turrosh Mak and his forces Launch a two pronged attack on Gradsul. One head of Mak s army comes across the Sheldomar while two other waves attack from the sea. General Torocoan who is stationed at Gradsul at the time of the attack, is seen fighting amongst his men in a valiant effort to save the doomed city. He is last seen going down under a wave of orcan and goblinoid attackers. General Dovenmar and the rest of the struggling Keoland River fleet attempt to flee to the sea, but are quickly decimated by the more ocean worthy Pomarj Navy. Where, when, or how Turrosh managed to develop these sailing vessels is unknown. As the battle rages, the fires of Gradsul keep the night time sky lit as it were day. The remnants of the Keoland Ocean Navy arrive and take serious losses attempting to save Dovenmar and his men. They fall back to the Sheldomar, and it is here that the entire Keoland Fleet is destroyed. The Pomarj Fleet, aided by shore bound catapults and superior numbers, manage to sink every ship. Dovenmar and his ships make a heroic stand hoping for aid to arrive in time, but the aid never comes. Gradsul falls and Monmurg not long thereafter, as Turrosh puses his forces against Brotherhood controlled lands. Rather than fight what they know to be a losing battle, the Brotherhood gives Turrosh Mak Monmurg as well as several Islands as long as he agrees to make no further western expansion. Turrosh makes the agreement, then turns around and purchases several thousand slaves from the Brotherhood to use in his front lines. Turrosh Mak splits his empire and establishes a second capital on Jetsom Island. From here, his newly found navy is able to patrol all along the Azure Coast, effectively land locking the Keolanders.

The County of Urnst and the Duchy of Urnst unify into a single Kingdom. This is facilitated by the marriage of Duke Karl s eldest son to Countess Belissica s daughter. Duke Karl takes the title of King so that his son may inherit a kingdom. Countess Belissica insists that the capital of this new kingdom be Radigast city, and that all further heirs of the Kingdom of Urnst come from the house of Gellor. This basically means that the inherited title of King or Queen of Urnst is to be passed along the female lines of the family. Duke Karl s son, Kressen, takes the last name of his bride to show he fully supports this condition. As part of this new direction in Urnst s history, and in an attempt to aid the economically faltering Nyrond, the Kingdom of Urnst purchases many of Nyrond s northern lands, including those around Midmeadow. This reduces Nyrond s taxable borders to a northern extent of Borneven, while placing a considerable amount of gold in the King s coffers. This also serves to alleviate any immediate fears of Iuz coming against Nyrond, so that Nyrond is better able to deal with it s more easterly threats, namely the Bone March.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Re: Forensic divination magic [was: Circle of Darkness, now NGC]

Subject: Re: [GREYTALK] Forensic divination magic [was: Circle of Darkness, now NGC]
Date: Fri, 19 Feb 1999 11:54:59 -0600
From: John C Wright
Reply-To: The GREYtalk Discussion List
To: GREYTALK@MITVMA.MIT.EDU

Scott wrote:
> The body is DEAD. Therefore, it is not a living thing. IF the body is Cymria's
> remains, then the spell would confirm that, yes, the dead body of Cymria is right
> there on the floor. IF the body is someone else and NOT Cymria, the spell would
> not locate the body lying on the floor -- thus proving that Cymria, if not still
> alive, had at least not met her end here as it appeared.

My question was never about the body being dead. The way the spell reads (and the point to remember is that it is a low-level divination and therefore not infallible), is that the caster must know for certain what the 'true' body of Cymria is like when they cast the spell.

Example: Martin the Priest of Nunsuch...casts locate object to discover the location of the shroud of balin. All of the information that Martin knows describes the shroud as being of x height and x weight and x dimensions etc. When he casts the spell, locate object will lead him to the object (even if in truth the object is actually pants of gunn or the shirt of tina). The spell cannot differentiate between what it is believed to be looking for and what it is intended to be looking for. If Martin goes one further and has a piece of the shroud there, and casts the spell, even though the shroud is really atablecloth, the spell will indicate its location and not give any reason for the caster to suspect that the object is anything other than what it is thought to be.

So in the example of the body I had stated, the fact that there is a body available and that the priest is trying to locate said body, will lead to the spell revealing that the body does indeed lay right before the caster. Even though the body is not the body of who the caster thinks it is.

Now while locate object would not reveal such information, the fourth level spell divination might very well, so long as the caster went about asking his questions in a logical and consistent manner, and did not automatically assume that the body before them was in fact the body of Cymria.

I hope that makes my view a bit more understandable, but I am glad to have feedback. The point about mid-level divinations is one I had not yet covered for the body, and am glad it was brought up so that I have my answers ready when my group gets to this point. Hmmm....then again they don't have divination as a major sphere to any of their priests...ah well best to cover all the bases beforehand.

John Wright

Fate of Istus

Subject: [GREYTALK] Fate of Istus
Date: Tue, 13 Apr 1999 17:39:57 EDT
From: Tamerlain@AOL.COM
To: GREYTALK@MITVMA.MIT.EDU

Patrice writes:

>>Greyhawk the Adventure begins page 3 seems to say it is set between 578 and 582.>>

Paul writes:

>>Sages and savants -
Although I don't have an answer to Creighton's answer, I do have another question. I once saw a glancing reference to FoI as "non-canon" or no longer canon. Is this true, and why?>>

Rainer writes:

>>But the Scarlet Brotherhood adventure inside (the final one, where all the monks leave Oerth) sets it in 576 CY.>>

Lisa writes:

>>Actually, what I said was that some parts of it weren't considered canon.
For instance, the existence of Kara Tur since that was moved to the Realms. So,
at best, you should take stuff within FoI with a grain of salt.>>

(See explanation of this below---Steve)

Paul and all (except Lisa, who already knows all of this!),

At the Greyhawk Summit 98, Team Greyhawk decided that the Fate of Istus was only partially canon (actually, we had talked about this off and on for a while prior to the Summit).

The rationale goes as follows: 1) The new Greyhawk would act as if monks and assassins did *not* disappear (and they didn't disappear in many home campaigns anyway), and Scarlet Brotherhood Monks are not Oriental Monks, therefore the sections in FoI about the Kara Tur monks et al do not apply, 2) Some dates given in the FoI cause potential problems with dates presented in other products...fixes for these have to be made, or the FoI dates should be ignored where these conflicts exist, 3) Some things, like the Istus' plague very well could have happened without disrupting the rest of the setting (the date for this isn't set, but anywhere from 576 to 582 with no trouble.), 4) Some dated historical events are fine and do not conflict with other events in Greyhawk canon (such as the brief siege of Junre by goblins and orcs in the Hateful Wars 9253 [25])

In case 1) nothing is considered canon, in case 2) only some things are considered canon, after work, in case 3) the event is canon, but no date is attached (Roger was functioning within this framework for assigning the dates for FoI in The Adventure Begins), and in case 4) all are canon.

Because of these reasons, Team Greyhawk has a very flexible attitude about FoI as one might imagine (Sean cursed it once within the last two months, even as I was trying to provide rationale for some of its dates. Erik and Roger were generally just laughing...and then they started trying to sort the mess out for the particular dates we were working on... ;)

I'd suggest the following if you want to include the 576 date for FoI:

576-582 CY---Events in the adventure Fates of Istus 9577 [3]

576 CY---Passing of the "Millennium" date predicted by Huro for the Scarlet
Brotherhood, Millennialist Party begins to decline (6091 SD)
Note: See c 490's 11374 [17], 9253 [110]
---Scarlet Brotherhood discovers Weeping Hexagram (6091 SD) 11374
[86]
---beginning of the plague of Istus (although this could go
anywhere between 576 and 582.) (based on 9253 [110], modified by 9577 [3])
Note: this date assignment is not *canon* just my suggestion.

581 CY--- Band of mercenaries penetrate defenses of the Hidden City of the Scarlet Brotherhood (Hesuel Ilshar), and steal an Weeping Hexagram (6096 SD) 11374 [5, 86] NOTE: This event could well easily be modified to be the party of adventurers from FoI (9253), primarily, while the Weeping Hexagram might still have been destroyed, don't automatically assume that the party was as per 11374 [5].

(Compiled dates from the GreyChrondex)

If an early date is assigned to the plague, and the character party is assumed to be the 581 CY bunch that steals the Weeping Hexagram, it is possible to stretch the events of the FoI out over several years, and have the plague act as one of the major pre-cursor event to the Wars.

For campaigns that have used FoI and already have it "set" in time, it would be easy enough to say that parties that successfully got to Hesuel Ilshar and left (alive) were the party that stole the Weeping Hexagram (and move that date if necessary).

This is "retro-fixing" but it does make FoI fit better. To keep the annoying "upgrade" tendencies of FoI out, just work out new rewards/punishments for characters at the end of each chapter that changes the class to 2nd ed. The adventures in FoI aren't bad, and the city descriptions are nice to have, but having the whole thing drive a change to 2nd ed was a poor "setting" decision (even if it might've been a wise marketing one). It is our "Avatar" book, and we should just be glad it was only one adventure.

Steve Wilson
Greyhawk "Sage," Team Greyhawk

Re: [GH98] WotC/TSR need to be fearless

Priority: Normal
Date sent: Mon, 20 Oct 1997 10:19:21 -0400
Send reply to: Keith Horsefield afn09454@afn.org
From: Keith Horsefield afn09454@afn.org
Subject: Re: [GREYTALK] [GH98] WotC/TSR need to be fearless
Originally to: David Rooke dwr@davroo.demon.co.uk
To: GREYTALK@MITVMA.MIT.EDU

Good Day All,

>> I disagree. If one thing can be said for Carl Sargent he was true to
>> his predecessors.
>
>That is the crux of the matter. You think Sargent was true to his
>predecessors and I think that he most certainly was not.

David, you prove my point for me:

>I had a long chat at a convention with Carl Sargent and discussed many
>things with him. One of the things he mentioned was how he felt
>hamstrung by the Rary the Traitor material and would have loved to have
>just ignored it. He actually felt that some material did need to be cut
>but he wasn’t authorized to do so.

This is just one case in point. Carl also was true to a fault
t[missing text] Cook the author of Greyhawk Wars.

>Of course, he made worthy attempts to make the timeline consistent
>bearing in mind that even this he failed in, as he admitted to me
>personally, since the world was EGG’s (not hit) and he was therefore
>guessing in many areas.

And there is the key phrase, it WAS Gygax’s world. Greyhawk is no
longer Gygax’s and from the looks of things it may never return to the
fold. Gary has my utmost respect and I thank him for bringing his
vision to all of us, but the ‘official’ Greyhawk is now owned by TSR.

>What damns Sargent’s work in my eyes, however, is that he turned the
>setting inside out from a setting for heroic, S&S style fantasy to an
>essentially dark fantasy setting. Consequently, his stated aim of
>remaining true to the essence of EGG’s creation was just the waving of
>flag of convenience.

Under the guidance given Carl (see your comment about TSR and [text missing]
deciding upon a consistent history and the Rary the Traitor
conversation, he kept to Gary’s vision as much as possible. Once
again I’ll state that if you read “War’s End” from the Atlas of the
Flanaess from FtA and the ‘Brief History’ from the 1980 WoG Gazetteer,
the end political result is remarkable similar.

I find the duality of FtA Greyhawk, a much darker fantasy in the east over the west, a welcomed change from the dribble we receive all too often from TSR.

>The Greyhawk Wars and FtA won’t happen IMC at all.

What about Dragon #65 (by Kuntz)? Nyrond, Almor and the Iron League declare war on the Great Kingdom in 578 CY. Personally, I like the idea that a state of war existed for 4 years between these nations, but it took the ‘Vatun’ incident to actually light the fuse.

>However, what happens IMC isn’t what’s being discussed here. It’s what
>happens with the Official Campaign that counts

Agreed.

>
>>If Roger’s version of GH does not take into account the
>>evolution that has happened through the Greyhawk Wars then there is
>>no valid reason for it except possible $$$$ and catering to minorities
>>within the community who were put out by subsequent TSR publications
>>on Greyhawk. Just republish the original setting and be done with it.
>>
>
>But am I saying scratch the GH Wars? Of course not.

I didn’t say YOU did, but I have my concerns about TSR.

>> One of the caveats of Greyhawk is an internally consistent
>>history. We just can’t change this because we don’t like the outcome.
>
>Part of TSR’s job is to decide on a consistent historical timeline. If it
>offends a few people then that’s too bad. You can’t please everyone. I’d
>rather have a few people offended and a consistent/believable history
>than an fractured and unbelievable history with another set of people
>aggrieved (somewhat more justifiably. IMO).

Bingo!! When TSR handed Carl the job of producing FtA, he was placed under some strict guidelines as to what he could do with it and what he couldn’t. Now, due to public opinion, it would appear that they regret that decision. Roger is probably also working under a set of guidelines but IMO the issues that were introduced by the Greyhawk Wars and then ‘codified’ within FtA must be dealt with, neither ignored nor glossed over with simple fixes.

I’ve been relatively silent on the use of the Crook of Rao to rid Oerth of ALL the fiends. I don’t agree with it. It introduces a whole host of problems. But as of yet I have not been able to come up with a palatable solution that achieves the same ends. This one issue, removing the fiends from Oerth, appears to be one of the foundation building blocks for the next edition of Greyhawk.

>>Sometimes people die and sometimes people don’t live up to your
>>expectations.
>
>Are you trying to say that, “yes there’s some crap in WG but you have
>good stuff and bad stuff in a product line but this “lumpiness” makes it
>more real. For real life has good and bad”? To that I say humbug!

No what I was trying to say is that Tensor is dead and Rary acted contrary to how most people envisioned him. These events are now in the past and written in Greyhawk’s history. It is time to move on.

>What I feel WotC/TSR are in danger of doing is trying to please everyone
>(or should I say offend no one) with GH98 leaving us with a wishy-washy
>creation that resolves none of the settings core problems.

Core problems in whose opinion (though it would seem Roger and TSR agree with those against FtA. Wonder why? Could it be up until this point only those who felt slighted by FtA voiced their opinion)? I agree catering to a vocal on-line minority that all we get is a Greyhawk not of any vision.

We already have a S&S Greyhawk in the 1983 boxed set. If this is all the new edition is going to do then drop the new edition and publish supplements for the original setting and FtA.

>WotC/TSR must decide on a firm stance with the setting and the way it’s
>going to be developed cutting some of the crass historical stuff, if that’s
>what it takes to get the job done.

To this statement I can only second Galwylin’s comments:
>the ‘it never happened’ sticker.

>
>For this to happen in Greyhawk would be completely unacceptable.
>What eventually goes into Greyhawk’s new game has to include
>everything that’s happened in it’s past.
>>RPGs are just a mirror of Real Lif(with a lot of escapism thrown in for
>>good measure) and for the most part should operate in like manner.
>>
>
>Again humbug! RPGs are a *game* meant to be enjoyed as a
>recreational pastime by those taking part. Nothing more and nothing
>less. Mirror of real life? Such profound nonsense makes me want to
>laugh…
>

Up until this point I found your posting palatable. How you choose to run relationships between your PCs and NPCs is your decision. How I choose to run them in my campaign is my decision. Whether or not you agree with that does not grant you the opportunity to make light of other views on how RPGs d be gamed.

Keith Horsefield
Member Team OS/2
“To a person with a hammer, everything looks like a nail”
---
E-mail: afn09454@afn.org
Home page: http://www.afn.org/~afn09454/

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Esperian Vale Adventures

Date: Mon, 20 Mar 2000 17:16:52 -0000
From: "Farina, Jason"
Subject: Esperian Vale Adventures. Enjoy, but pay attention to the disclai mer.... or else.....

Below, I present the first part of the latest campaign to plonk from the sewer I call an imagination.

Be warned, it might contain information your DM doesn't want you to know and could very well ruin your enjoyment of an adventure.
this weeks episode (well this part of this week's) effectively destroys all mystery etc in The Four Season's of Jivaldi, and gives away a bit about the AD&D fast play rules beginning scenario and the Free download of B3 from the WoTC website.

I would strongly advise that you ask your DM if he intends running any of these BEFORE you read any further. If you read this and your DM pokes your eyes out with a pointy object, don't come crying to me!

Now, disclaimer aside, read on, enjoy, add plenty of salt and please dispose of any combustables or flammatory devices at the entrance. Thank you.


The Esperian Vale Campaign.

Week 1.

Characters involved:

Name level class Notes:
Stuffy 1st necromancer (human) Not the brightest mage in the world, or the strongest, quickest, wisest, nicest or hardiest.
Quote: "Manacles, wooden block, sledgehammer. Wanna find out what misery really is?"

Loreal 1st elf, Fighter Vain and arrogant, considers Gunther his 'familiar'
Quote: " because I'm worth it"

Gunther 1st` Dwur, fighter Lazy, rather prone to violence, dwarven really....
Quote: "We're all going to die! Where's that bottle of wine I found?"

Panthene 1st ranger (human) a good ranger if a little accident prone, not great person skills....
Quote: "Oops, I guessed wrong"

A bit of campaign information would be nice I suppose:

Right, well, the group consists of, currently, 4 friends. We are all aged between 23 and 26 and have known each other right the way through college.
That's over 6 years I have been Dming for them (and most of that was ToEE, which they never managed to finish :-), hey wow! Word includes smileys!!!).
Anyway, we are pretty used to how each of us play and react so I decided to put together a series of adventures into a 'campaign'. The main reason for this is that we are all working and we never know whether we will make a game or not so I wanted to have a more 'freeform' game than a linear campaign like ToEE. So, I went looking on the internet and in old modules (mainly 1st ed collections etc) as well as in the Lankhmar supplements and gathered together a load of scenarios that I would like to DM. When I saw B3, I was delighted. A low level adventure that fitted perfect with the introduction I had already planned. Many bits of modules have been changed to cram them into the general storyline, but by and large they should be recognisable. Note: I might not always remember who wrote what scenario, so don't take offense if I don't credit someone when I should. It's not done deliberately.

House rules:
1. fighters (single class) roll D12 Hp, and before I get stoned for this, it's working quite well since it's introduction over two years ago.
2. Mages CAN use non-mage weapons if they pay more for them
3. Mages MUST specialise and meet the requirements for specialisation.
4. Mages can wear quilted or padded armour as per the sugestion in simon Gibbs in his Armour of the Forgotten Realms article. He also did a weapons one (more later) well worth reading IMHO.
5. Character points are used for Weapon and non-weapon proficiencies.
6. Priests do not choose their patron deity. Through their actions, a deity may or may not call them to service
7. There is NO longsword in the game. I hate that weapon. It removes the flavour of culture. And makes polearms look ridiculous :-).

Righty, that's most of the rules, there are others but they aren't really important.
Oh yeah, Stuffy the Necromancer decided to take farm implements as weapons.
I saw no reason why not as long as they were in character. He took a Scythe (for clearing long grass in graveyards....) and a sledgehammer (for breaking open sarcophagi etc.). I may not have been right allowing it, but I just thought it was a good reason for them and made for an unusual character.

The Setting:

The adventures are set in the Grand Duchy of Geoff, in a makey uppy vale called The Vale of Esperia situated in the NorthWest of the duchy. The vale map is taken from the adventure "four seasons of jivaldi" by blue troll.
I've placed the Palace of the Silver princess to the NW, just on the edge of the crystalmists - the vale being the same one described in the background of the module B3. I've also included the AD&D quick play scenario (the one with the ghoul) and am considering adapting the quick play one about the smoke dragon to fit in as well.

Now, the adventure begins:

PART 1.1: Stefan and the Trail to Dolmor.

The party begin at an interview with the local lord, a minor noble called Ulrich Wolsden. They are hired to get word to his younger of two sons , Stefan, to return. The Elder son, Karl, has been struck by a terrible fever after falling from his horse, and, fearing that he will die, Ulrich wants Stefan nearby to be ready to assume the place of heir. Stefan set out just after Harvest time to collect the taxes, a tour of the lands that he has undertaken for the past eight years accompanied by 12 of the lord's men at arms. As well as collecting the taxes, Stefan uses this opportunity to 'meet the people' and pursue his own hobby of Herbalism, art and history. He usually winters in the town of Dolmor where he is working on a herbal encyclopaedia with the local druid Foswel and the town clergyman, Lehar. He loans horses to the party and supplies them with three homing pigeons so they can send word of their progress.

The journey to Dolmor is pretty uneventful.

Just outside of Dolmor they Panthene discovers tracks in the mud, human tracks, one of them trailing blood. Alongside these are canine tracks which he thinks are those of wolves, rather large wolves. Unsure, he guesses that there are at least four but certainly no more than eight of the creatures.
Stuffy is nervous but Panthene assures him that wolves rarely attack humans, (hastily adds elves and dwarves into that statement), unless they're really hungry, or rabid. The tracks are very recent, within the last half hour or so. Cautiously they continue. The forests around them seems darker than they should, despite the approaching twilight. After a few minutes of slow progress, Loreal hears the sounds of men calling for help, and the snarling of wolves. Gunther isn't surprised, after all, elves have big ears.
The party quickly decide to investigate. Pressing through the undergrowth, they enter a small clearing and see two men trying to fend off five large mountain wolves. Only three of the wolves are fighting, the two other stand back bleeding from the mens' recent successes. The wolves have not been the only victims. One man is bleeding badly from a wound on his thigh and a third man lies dead or unconscious behind. Their retreat is block by a mass of thorns and briars, their escape blocked by the position of the wolves. At the Party's approach, the two injured wolves turn and snarl, but make no move to attack or flee. The three fighting are quickly wearing down the humans' defenses. Gunther swings from his saddle and draws his battle axe.
Unslinging his shield he charges into the fray, Loreal provides covering fire with his shortbow, so skillful is his firing that his first arrow seems to ruffle the dwur's beard! Panthene dismounts also and tries to arc around to the flank. Stuffy, thinking quickly, decided to use his spell of tiredness on one of the injured wolves (Ray of fatigue) , the smokey beam strikes it's target and the beast collapses panting to the ground, it's blood loss from injury and this unnatural fugue overpowering it. Loreal's first arrow takes the second injured wolf in the chest, killing it instantly (OK, so I'm probably wrong about the instant thing, but it sounded good when I was describing it and it was the party's very first taste of action after all. I wanted to introduce a bit of a feelgood factor).
Gunther steps in over the corpse and swings hard. Unfortuately, he decided to attack a rock that looked like a wolf rather than an actual wolf and wound up taking quite a large chunk out of his axe blade.. "damn human smithy work"... Panthene manages to place himself between one wolf and the injured woodsman, the wolf, instead of attacking decides to charge Stuffy's horse causing it to rear and throw the mage, amost knocking him unconscious and certainly making him a sitting target. Instead the wolves flee herding the mage's panicked horse into the woods before them. Embarrassed Gunther decides to give chase but then remembers that he hates forests and can't track a trail of breadcrumbs if his life depended on it, so he returns to convince Panthene to help out. Panthene is talking to the woodsmen who are thanking him for the rescue, then, when Loreal coughs (wolf fur in the throat) they thank him. Stuffy, meanwhile, has regained his feet and is busy pulping the exhausted wolf (there was a type of ritual chant, but children might read this so I won't repeat them here ;-) ).

The woodsmen tell their story on the way to Dolmor. They describe the attack on Willy's Hen house in the town and their subsequent search through the woods. Wolves are a severe concern for a village that has a large dependance on furs and meats for trade and provisions. But these wolves were unusual.
Three days they tracked them through the woods, North, South, East and West.
Never did they find any sign of a den or community (Peter, the uninjured hunter, is quite proud of his knowledge of wolves - he asked Foswel the druid a few questions before the left as well). Then on the third day, just when they were about to give up the chase, the wolves found them. Three of them stepped into a glade, as bold as brass and, snarling and snapping, forced the hunters to back away. That's when the other two attacked from behind. The ambush was uncanny, almost human planned - certainly better than anything those pesky goblins ever tried anyway. The hunters ran, but Eugene (the unconscious hunter) was bitten badly and had to be carried most of the way. Eventually they were forced off the trail to that clearing where the wolves cornered them and launched their assault. If it weren't for the party's intervention they would surely have been killed.

During this, Morris, the injured hunter - but still conscious - assures Loreal that his nose will heal. It is obvious that Gunther lacks the elve's accuracy when he uses his fists, or maybe it was the elve's lack of facial hair that caused the error in judgement?

Finally the town of Dolmor comes into view and the party make their way to the temple of Beory to get Eugene tended to. They use the back entrance under Peter's advice for fear of causing a panic in the town.

Source so far: Four Season's of Jivaldi by Blue Troll.

Continued tomorrow in part 1.2. (I'm a bit of a slow typist.....)

Re: EuroChat summmary?

Date: Wed, 24 Nov 99 04:11AM PST
From: "Paul Redmond" Add To Address
To: scvolstagg@netscape.net
Subject: Re: EuroChat summary?

Here ya go - even edited and spell checked to remove the fluff.

>I thought someone was going to summarize our work and post it to the list?

Maybe once we actually do some work - I haven't contacted Stephane about doing naything yet - been a bit busy.

Anyway here's the log:

sander> A town is a way too big undertaking - a village?
Volstagg> We can start small.
Stephane> Sander) A thorp ?
Woesinger> a village of some sort sounds good
Woesinger> if so then where
sander> now if I knew what a thorp was...
Volstagg> A village in the Wild Coast, plagued by kobolds?
Volstagg> A thorp is a community smaller than a village.
Quij> a new village of Hommlet would be cool.
Stephane> We could also finish the session with some home work to be completed in the following week (s ?) before posting it to Greytalk.
Volstagg> Homework?? I'm not in school anymore..
Stephane> Vol) :-P
Stephane> The simple fact that you have to produce something for the rest of the group next week could help procrastinators like...me
sander> Now whose afraid of homework?
Olvenhero> It's a good idea to use a local on the Wild coast consumed by the Pomarj. It allows for humanocentric approach to the original material and the transition to humanoid occupation is easier to conceive. In all, it becomes of use and adventurous to both a pre- and post-Wars setting.
Quij> What do you guys think the Wild Coast political scene looks like? I've always thought of it as small villages mostly, with independent lords and a lot of freeman farmers.
Stephane> Again, let's start very small, exchange idea around a project and do some writing. not everybody has to write every week. We could use volunteers...
Olvenhero> More like diffuse city-states always on the verge of greater things.
Volstagg> Really, Quij? I thought it was controlled by city states...
Quij> I've never thought that the city states controlled more than their hex.
Volstagg> Okay, our village should be somewhere in the south...
sander> The small villages would dominate - there are only so many city-states, and they have got to get the food from somewhere...
Volstagg> Since when do farmers control city-states just because of they make the food?
sander> There would be quite a lot of fishing villages there... As well as elsewhere on the coasts of Flannaess
Woesinger> how about a village far enough away from a city state that it is semi independent?
Volstagg> Okay. A remote village. Inland?
sander> 'dominate' and 'dominate' as in - there are going to be lots and lots of more villages than city states
Woesinger> or it just give lip service and occasional tithes to the local city-state ruler?
Quij> Volstagg: the farmers don't control anything, imo (not like the Yeomanry at all), but each lord would maintain his own sovereignty.
Volstagg> Well, naturally there will be more villages than cities. That would be true anywhere.
Volstagg> Does our remote inland village have its own lord?
Olvenhero> Nearer to the forests would be good for this kind of semi-autonomy. The larger cities wouldn't want to over extend themselves, but might offer aid in exchange for food. The humanoids of the forests would provide adventure problems in any timeframe and the olvenfolk might be usable in a Mak-oriented situation.
sander> Why do people always when talking about feudalism/middle-ages put
the peasants in the situation they were in France in the beginning of 17th century?
sander> Not every village has a direct lord. Villages don't have lords, regions (no matter how small) do...
sander> But whatever it has one and to whom it pays taxes to is a very distant matter imho...
Volstagg> Okay, Sander, so is this in a lorded region, or a lordless region?
Olvenhero> San> But villages do often have lords at some level above them. But yes, villages more often have "protectors", reeves, or elders of some sort to "lead".
Stephane> We would choose next week project at the end of the chat or have
some one say that he will bring a starter to the next chat. this starter could be posted before the chat, so everybody would know the basics.
Quij> In the current orcish "empire" the people would have new masters: the orcs. They'd either be serfs or, probably, slaves. I wonder how the orcs maintain control as a minority, alien race? Could be the people don't care? (one set of masters is as good as another?)
sander> Or rather, neither the people nor the orcs really care? Why should they?
Olvenhero> How about semi-control under the authority of gnolls or flinds, who are very organised?
Volstagg> A flind landlord? Hmm...
Volstagg> Stephane, this is looking promising, so maybe we can try your scheme for next week.
sander> Well, I guess they just give their share of foodstuffs to whatever "lord" goesby and demands one
sander> And whom they don't feel like they can just boot away.
Volstagg> Is this a village of 400 humans? 500?
Stephane> Volstagg) Much smaller than that !
Stephane> About 150
sander> Too many. Rather, why not decide the number of families and work from there?
sander> So 10 families?
sander> 15 families?
Volstagg> How many in a family?
Quij> Maybe Turrosh Mak is an enlightened despot? Could be the Flanaess will see a renaissance of orcish culture...
sander> 10 people or more, usually
Stephane> 15 families fine with me, with about 4-5 people per family
Volstagg> That's a small family, Stephane...
Olvenhero> Quij> Please....
sander> 4-5 is way too few for a medieval or even close families
Volstagg> Who's going to work the fields with that few kids?
Stephane> Volstagg> A family for me being an homestead. Agreed though that,
in a rural setting, families would be bigger
Volstagg> 22 families, approx. 200 people?
Woesinger> Right how about this - the village is close to the limit of the effective control of a WC city state - out of the way but has a fertile hinterland. it bribes the city with food to keep their officials off their backs.
Woesinger> When the orcs invaded its sufficiently off the beaten track (or close to the Olves) that the orcs cannot maintain sufficient control
Quij> My current character comes from the wild coast, in a town I invented at the crossroads of Badwall, Fax, & Elredd. His family has about well over 20 people in it. (about 8 or 10 brothers and sisters, and their children, the parents, grandparents, and a few farmhands)
Volstagg> And how about 25 miles of Badwall as placement?
Woesinger> As to family sizes -8-10 including grandmothers etcetc
songe> don't you think ten people "alive" per families is too much
sander> Towards the sea?
Quij> Olvenhero: Don't like my idea of Turrosh Mak? hehe.
Volstagg> It just doesn't seem very remote to me if its by the sea...
sander> Family: 2+2+1-2+4 at the very minimum
songe> I mean in medieval time there is many death
Volstagg> Much death, and much...you know...going on.
Olvenhero> Quij> I think the record stands that Mac earned his title of "Despot".
sander> 2 - grandparents + 2 - husband & wife + 1-2 unmarried brothers/sisters + about 4 surviving children
Quij> songe: that begs the question: how common are priests? who are also spellcasters?
sander> not everybody married/had a family, largely not to divide the available land up too much
Volstagg> But even married children would often live in their family's home.
sander> right.
Volstagg> Well, at least in a slavic culture...
Quij> Volstagg: I agree.
Woesinger> Yeah - and remember no birth control (or very basic) ;)
sander> As for priests, about one I guess, imc no non-spellcasting priests, no magic-user
songe> quij> I always thing shaman to be both priest and mage but I play in first ed you know
Volstagg> I think we can assume no leveled people in a village that small.
sander> well, in a fantasy setting, there is no reason for no birth control.
Creighto2> birth control would be "natural"; a very high child mortality
Stephane> I'd say a first level priest and maybe a first level fighter
Woesinger> so how about 15 families - giving between 125 and 175 people?
Volstagg> 30 miles northwest of Elredd?
Olvenhero> Vol> Actually, depending on how close to the forests, there might be a couple woodsfolk who qualify as rudimentary rangers.
Quij> pre-industrial societies valued large families.
Volstagg> Someone was adamant about it being by the sea...
sander> industrial ones did as well, ;largely until after WWII
sander> Really?
Volstagg> 150 pop. sounds too small to me to bother with, but if everyone else thinks that's okay...
Stephane> Volstagg> Remember, we want to start small
Woesinger> any advance on 150?
Woesinger> 150 going once
Volstagg> I think that's too small to rationalise a 1st level cleric being there.
Quij> many religions have a "go forth and multiply" clause, too (at least the Romans did).
Stephane> I like 20 families and 200 people
Volstagg> At most it has a shrine to one god.
Woesinger> 200!
Woesinger> I hear 200!
songe> ok for 200 souls
Creighto2> and a militia of 20 max
sander> Well, doesn't Safeton number 5500?
sander> Errr...
Stephane> Volstagg) in rural Qu├ębec, until 1960, every village would have a church.
sander> 200 people would never accept feeding a militia of 20
Quij> I think that's just the people living within the town walls.
songe> I suppose you plan to build up a village
Volstagg> 200 souls, 20 militiamen, with 1 1st lvl leader?
Woesinger> 200 sounds reasonable for a hamlet to me
Olvenhero> I suppose we don't want to use the village from DUNGEON....
Creighto2> the militia would have other jobs they would be part-timers
Stephane> MIlitia is taken from the villagers, on a round basis.
sander> leave the 20 militiamen out
Volstagg> The militia might be forced on them!
Volstagg> A militia of humanoids?
sander> 20 is way too many - 10%
Stephane> Olvenhero) DUNGEON ??
Woesinger> if this is a semi independent place then they might not have a militia per se
Quij> GH population figures are much too small, imo. they should be increased by x5 to be reasonable.
Creighto2> not really if they all have other jobs and just soldier when needed
Woesinger> they might get the able-bodied folk to defend from any threats, but an organised militia ...I don't know
sander> Well, 20 humanoid soldiers + some non-soldiers sounds ok
songe> sander > hard to feed 20 unproductive in a way but may be they could
be timber ( bucheron) or hunter
sander> songe - agreed. the village would never have 20 militia
Volstagg> By the way, Stephane, those churches didn't have 1st lvl clerics!
Volstagg> 15 militiamen, then?
sander> a 1st level cleric is very probable
sander> 10
Quij> I think the "militia" would be part-time, maybe training every Godsday or something, but farmers, shepherds, etc. otherwise.
Stephane> I'd say 10-20 able bodied people who could take up village defence, maybe more . It make for one male per family.
Volstagg> I totally disagree about the cleric.
sander> Why, Vollstag?
Olvenhero> Stef> The Setting Sun, issue #73
songe> quij > it s the way I see it too
Volstagg> Are we assuming this is not a humanoid occupied village?
Woesinger> able bodied men would be about a third of the population?
sander> No. 1/6
Quij> Woe: I think 1/5th at the most.
Stephane> Every head of a family, plus at least the older son, would be "volunteer" in time of needs
Stephane> That make for about 20-30 people.
sander> I'm not sure about that...
Woesinger> that sounds good - and they'd have bow and spear, maybe a few swords and axes?
songe> stephane> that sound correct to me
Stephane> Volstagg> That is what I'm assuming. It is not worth any garrison
sander> Bows maybe, axes maybe, one or two swords (these are expensive),
some spears (hunting) also
Quij> spear, self bow, maybe pole arms. I don't think swords would be too popular with working class.
Woesinger> and they'd deal with local threats and the like
Woesinger> pikes? flails etc?
Creighto2> I would have thought few swords mainly spears, wood axes and a couple of bows bearing in mind a longbow costs around 75gp
sander> popular? It sounds as if sword had any special advantages as a weapon over axes or maces
Taras> Pole Arms are a must. A bunch of them were essentially agricultural tools (ie: bill hook), so they will be there.
Volstagg> Not me, Steph. Someone should have thought of that sooner..
sander> flails.
Volstagg> Though so far it sounds like it could be anywhere.
Quij> I firmly believe that every town would have some sort of local lord, a baronet or knight. (even if his seat is in another town)
Woesinger> there wouldn’t be a garrison partly because its too small and partly because they bribe the officials with food etc not to put one here (?)
Stephane> Quij) Not this small hamlet
sander> It is a small village. A knight would have several
Woesinger> and this is the Wild coast after all not an organised state (?)
sander> It needs several to buy a new sword or have his mail repaired once in a while
Quij> if the village didn't have a master, some war lord would come around and make himself one (I think)
songe> may be this small hamlet have a landlord who don't care about it
sander> Why would the officials want a garrison there?
Stephane> Maybe this village was under the rule of a lord before the orcs came. Now, they are just trying to survive
Woesinger> sander: to maintain control?
Creighto2> I assume this village is not occupied and therefore in the north
Quij> I could see that. The kingsmen went away, and didn't come back. But the hereditary title would pass along to someone. (nobles just don't give up claim to land)
Stephane> Creighton) It is conquered but not occupied
songe> so what are the natural resource of this hamlet?
Woesinger> perhaps the claim is disputed?
sander> woesinger: to maintain control you only need to be able to a) boot away anybody trying to take over b) make it clear to the peasants you can burn the village down any time you like
Woesinger> and has been for a long time..
Creighto2> if it were conquered who would it have a human militia wouldn’t the all be disarmed?
sander> Foodstuffs
Stephane> Songe> Forest being the obvious
Volstagg> Halfway between Fax and Elredd along the coast?
Woesinger> such that the locals have got used to the idea of being free to an extent and want to stay that way
sander> just like almost any other village
Quij> no need for a garrison. fear of the gibbet will keep most peasants in line.
sander> Not on the coast, if we don't want to tackle fishing
Stephane> Creighton> officially, they are...
songe> so they hunt could gather wood and farm
songe> a typical hamlet in a way
Woesinger> sander: fair enough - then they just keep a low profile and don't give anyone the excuse to come and do that
Creighto2> being caught with a bow or spear would be a death sentence
Volstagg> The '83 book says the Wild Coast produces no outstanding resources...
sander> ?????
Woesinger> sander: burn their village down
Olvenhero> Vol> I always read that as exportable resources.
Volstagg> So they only make what they need here.
Stephane> Creighton> I don't know. Since orcs are the conquerors, they probably don’t pay too much attention to a small hamlet of peasant
Creighto2> it will still produce enough grain etc to sustain life
sander> Well, being caught with a weapon being worth punishment depends largely on the location and time
Olvenhero> Or, "unknown".
songe> they produce no resource for exportation for sure, a small hamlet could barely do that
Volstagg> Are you thinking of feudal Japan, Creighton?
Woesinger> also on weapons it depends on who's enforcing law and order, which I think we've discussed is pretty non-existent
Creighto2> No I’m thinking if you had conquered somewhere you would not take kindly to someone running around with a powerful weapon like a bow
sander> Do they produce grain or rice or....?
songe> do they have herd?
Woesinger> right - we need to make a distinction between pre and post war...
sander> Or you would not care as everybody always does bear a weapon and you would punish those who are careless
Woesinger> initially we're detailing pre war (?)..
Quij> I think a small village like this would be a farming village (with a little left over to sell in the cities on market days) and mostly self sufficient.
Volstagg> The village is nominally lead by the 1st level fighter, a family head who had some war experience.
Woesinger> then moving on through to post war (?)
songe> cows ? sheep?
Stephane> Songe) No herd anymore, eaten by the orcs
Quij> turnips and sheep. :-)
sander> Vollstag - or who has the most riches?
Volstagg> Yes, they could still have sheep.
Volstagg> What riches? The one with the most sheep?
sander> The one with most land, animals and maybe a gold coin or two hidden somewhere
Woesinger> and the respect of the rest of the hamlet?
Olvenhero> Why not goats instead of sheep? If you are near the coastline, there's cliffs to negotiate, according to the several sources on the Wild Coast.
sander> Or if we are talking the coast, the one with two fishing boats instead of one
Woesinger> why not goats and sheep?
Quij> I hate to say it... but potatoes are a good crop. esp. in an area were there are a lot of soldiers roaming around trampling crops.
Stephane> Sander) No one would have land, per se. I think everything would be communal
Olvenhero> Or sheep plus goats?
songe> if they have sheep they have wool in a small amount at least plus leather from hunt and wood from woods:)
Volstagg> We keep wavering back and forth on if its a port village or not...
Volstagg> We need to make a decision before we can go farther.
sander> Stephane - the communal thing lasted for short time, it was largely communal + personal
Woesinger> right inland or on the coast?
Quij> goat milk and cheese
sander> port = coast.
Volstagg> Inland.
Olvenhero> Isn't it easier if it's inland some?
sander> I'd go for inland as well - it is way easier
Stephane> Inland
Volstagg> I originally wanted it tucked away by the Suss somewhere.
Olvenhero> Vol> That seems better to me.
Woesinger> so is that a majority for inland?
Quij> does the WC have very many natural harbours, or is it a "cliffy" kind of coast (or are there lots of reefs, shoals, etc. in the water). What about pirates?
Olvenhero> More cliffs as you go south, it seems.
Volstagg> What does Spain have?
Woesinger> vol: not assigned
Olvenhero> Quij> Yeah, them too. there are shelter coves to be had.
Volstagg> Actually, I meant, does Spain have beaches or cliffs?
Woesinger> vol: doh! ;)
Quij> Barcelona, and Port. has Lisbon. Two excellent port towns.
Woesinger> Spain has everything from beaches to cliffs
Woesinger> its a big place
Taras> So's the Wild Coast.
Woesinger> however am I right in saying the consensus is inland?
Stephane> OK. We have a small inland village, with about 20 families and 20 people, a first level leader and a first level cleric. it is located south of Badwall, was conquered by orcs but is not occupied right now since orcs don't bother with such a small hamlet. About 20 persons are able-bodied but they won’t resist orc's being largely outnumbered. they have crops.
Olvenhero> How about the occasional gnoll/flind tribesmen checking on the village, collecting food, etc.?
Woesinger> yeah the villagers might buy off the orcs/gnolls with food
sander> Well, the orcs/whoever would come by not so regularly and demand foodstuffs
Olvenhero> What I'm saying is, there needs to be the constant threat of "discovery" for anything going on.
Quij> An orcish governor in his villa?
sander> she meant rather 20 and able-bodied as in 'bearing weapons'
sander> Doubtful.
Olvenhero> The flinds/gnolls would be capable of sussing out any kind of complex plan, making the situation that much more tense.
sander> Orcs aren't the kind to put a lone governor somewhere
Quij> I was being silly.
Olvenhero> Sander> Which is the idea for Gnolls/Flind ::smile::.
Stephane> Taras) Sorry, 20
Stephane> Olvenhero) I like that (the threat of discovery)
songe> ok 20 first level fighter
sander> 20 leveled people in a village of 200?
Creighto2> 0 level fighters...
Quij> At this population level, you could detail everyone (at least age, sex, and maybe name) and just count heads to find who many able bodied males there are...
Olvenhero> Stef> It also opens up the olven potential, if there is at least one half-olven in the settlement. do we want this?
sander> 1 first level fighter, 1 first level cleric, 20 zero level fighters, 1 zero level cleric?
Stephane> Songe) No, 20 able-bodied people with only one 1st level fighter
sander> No. No half-elves
Olvenhero> Lay-person cleric?
Olvenhero> I did this once, it was a good idea.
Woesinger> a sort of village healer type?
songe> stephane> they are foodstuff for orcs :)
Quij> what about a druid?
sander> Ermm... 1 st level cleric most probably. It should be more likely for a village to have a 1st level cleric than a 1st level fighter
Woesinger> knows some herb lore and bone setting - also devoted to some god
Quij> the "old faith"?
Olvenhero> Priest would be what: Obad-Hai, Beory, or Ehlonna?
sander> obad-hai, beory, merikka
Stephane> Half-elven druid living not far in the Suss ?
Woesinger> Obad-Hai or Beory or maybe Pelor?
Olvenhero> What the hell is Merrika?
Woesinger> the Pelor priest would have to keep his head down
Stephane> I like Merrika !
sander> agriculture related demi/lesser goddess
Quij> maybe the local priest/druid told the people not to resist the orcs and because of that were saved?
Creighto2> of oeridian decent
Olvenhero> Not Ehlonna, then. she patron of half-elves and rangers, despite the screw up in _FtA_. I have the revisions from Carl, if anyone needs it...
songe> so in a way if they product food and pay a tribute to some humanoids they are protected by those ugly things
Olvenhero> songe> only in as far as they provide what is demanded -- whether in season or not. This offers more tension, as the "orcs" wouldn't care about growing seasons.
sander> Not protected - left in peace and living and the village not razed.
Olvenhero> Quij> About what?
Stephane> Songe) Kind of
Woesinger> yeah - but the orcs/flinds are a bit volatile - and have burned down some other villages in drunken fits?
sander> Well, the orcs probably would.
Quij> Olven: about what you meant by "druid" but not druidic priests.
songe> what happen if another band of humanoids try to raid the hamlet?
Quij> songe: they'd be sol
Stephane> Songe) The village is raided...
songe> ok thanks
sander> A conflict involving two bands of humanoids and the villagers?
Olvenhero> Woe> yes, but they occupied those villages. This one is too small to do that, except by a small force or single creature, like a gnoll/flind. Humanoid patrols might visit with varying frequency through the seasons.
Stephane> Songe, Of course, you could always play on intertribal conflict but no one would "care" about the village
Quij> heck, an ogre and his bully boys could take over this town...
songe> are you sure someone would like to live here ?
Stephane> Quij> Too big an opposition. I prefer the flind guy who come every other month or so for a tribute.
sander> Imho a very good idea 8-)
Woesinger> the flind sounds good
Stephane> Songe> They don’t have a choice...
songe> I mean why they don't left the hamlet and try to join a city
Woesinger> because things are worse in the city and beside they’re farmers they value the land that they "own"
songe> so they are 'enclose' in their land
Stephane> Songe> The nearest human-controlled city is more than 250 miles north...
sander> Why would they? They have no skills needed in a village. The most valuable thing they have is that the y work that piece of land
Creighto2> they would need a blacksmith
songe> ok I have not realised that they are directly in humanoids territory
Woesinger> yeah - that's probably true (blacksmith)
sander> Maybe. If there is a larger village not too far off, then no. But probably yes.
Olvenhero> Besides, even today most people don't travel more than 50-100 miles beyond home. It was so in elder times, too.
Creighto2> people lived a died in a 10 mile radius
Woesinger> so what have we got so far?
sander> Travelling in orc-ruled wild coast is probably not so good idea...
Olvenhero> What about the itinerant trader? Not everywhere had a forger/blacksmith but got goods in trade.
Woesinger> hmm...yeah - who hasn't shown up the last while....
sander> A village of 200, 20 who bear weapons, 1 fighter, 1 cleric, 1 blacksmith
Woesinger> or has, and has contacts with some sort of resistance?
Stephane> inland village, 20 family, 200 people, 20 able-bodied guys, one 1st level fighter, 1 st level cleric of Merrika or Obad'hai, a flind "superintendent"...
Olvenhero> Sounds cool....
sander> who visits once in a while
Olvenhero> I'll work on a name for our little village.
Olvenhero> How old is the village?
sander> There would probably be a family a bit more specialised in pottery
Quij> Why a flind? Why not an orc or 1/2 orc?
sander> and another more specialised in tanning
Creighto2> what about Darkwater as it is located near a deep river?
sander> and another more specialised in weaving
Stephane> Quij) Originality !
Quij> Oh. Okay. :)
Olvenhero> Orc would be incapable -- on the whole -- of the job.
Stephane> Creighton) River ?
Woesinger> flinds are more cunning - therefore more dangerous to any plans the villagers might have
sander> Not meaning that these are the only ones doing these or that the others don't do these but just that these are more specialised & practice it more
Olvenhero> Creighton> Well, I was thinking of something more integrated with cultural history.
Creighto2> just throwing something in all villages would be on or near rivers/streams etc IMC
Quij> Olvenhero: incapable? Orcs are as intelligent as humans, elves, dwarves, etc.
sander> Creighton2 - why?
Volstagg> Are you working on plot hooks yet?
Olvenhero> Quij>Not intelligence, ability to perform the office without destruction.
sander> There definitely have been and are lots of villages and towns that aren't.
Stephane> Ok, Dungeoncraft rule, we need a secret in this village. How about some indications to the lost city of the Suel in the Suss ? or the ruins of Nol-Daer, from DUNGEON
Woesinger> we've got the flind superintendent and possibly an itinerant trader who is in contact with a resistance movement?
Volstagg> It's true, the village needs a stream, well, or spring somewhere in walking distance..
sander> Oh no, not another lost city.;..
Olvenhero> How about a legacy from the Suel push out of the Sheldomar?
Volstagg> There already is a lost city in the Suss.
Creighto2> sander. to get water, transport, trade etc water travel was quicker/safer
sander> How about a demi-human the village people hide and guard?
Quij> Orcs are lawful evil (on average) aren't they? Not OGRE SMASH or something. ;-)
Olvenhero> I'll reoffer my half-elf?
sander> I'd offer rather a gnome...
Stephane> Volstagg) Yes, I just want to, maybe , tie these two things
sander> But half-elf is a possibility
Woesinger> or an olve from Celene?
Olvenhero> Quij> I don't recall, but they usually act more in groups.
Woesinger> injured on a scouting mission?
Volstagg> Well, I'll just leave the rest up to you lot. I need to get back to heating up my soup, and then back to my OWN town of Shargallen...
Olvenhero> Woe> whoah! The village is a listening post for Celene's reconquest of there land?
Stephane> He, I like the demi-human thing
Woesinger> are the Celeni planning a reconquest?
Woesinger> he might have some connections to the Knights of Luna (?)
Woesinger> perhaps the itinerant trader is trying to arrange to get this Olve back to Celene or to a place of safety

Fountainspring Newsletter #2

Date sent: Sat, 11 Oct 1997 03:35:02 -0500
Send reply to: manzabar@avalon.net
From: Manzabar manzabar@AVALON.NET
Organization: http://www.avalon.net/~manzabar
Subject: [GREYTALK] [FS] Fountainspring Newsletter #2
To: GREYTALK@MITVMA.MIT.EDU

TO ALL FS PROJECT MEMBERS (and other interested parties)!!!!!
When sending in ideas for discussion please send copies to all other members (and possibly even to the Greytalk list). My current list of interested people follows:

leckert@erols.com Lonny
manzabar@avalon.net Me
nemesis@magpage.com Jason Zavoda
tony@dirac.demon.co.uk Tony Nixon
silvio.marghitola@ubs.com Silvio Marghitola
stanguay@GLOBETROTTER.QC.CA Stephane Tanguay
eflison@blue.weeg.uiowa.ed dek aka Eric Filson
hzhryc@fle.gmpt.gmeds.com Kevin Murphy
orion_the_hunter”@juno.com Greg
akamp@avalon.net Adam


Anybody who thinks they still need some of the current FS files, please:

a) Visit the site As soon as anything it set/decided, I generally have it posted by the end of that week.
b) Let me know. I can and will e-mail any files that people need upon their request.


The Secret Location of Fountainspring??????

This was the last suggested location, and the most detailed. Any objections to making it our pfficail location?

-From Patrice Forno
Sometime ago, peoples here were asking about where Fountainspring could be. In AoE p 167, Fountainspring is said to be 1 day on horseback to the north of Littleberg. That is, IMO, around 40 miles north of Littleberg, so I would place Fountainspring in hex P4-87 of the Darlene Map.


Current projects:

The history of FS – Kevin Murphy
The guilds of FS – Kevin Murphy
Preisthoods of FS – Tony Nixon & dek
Current events – Stephane Tanguay

Current Discussions:

Fountainspring: Artiesan well, hot spring. Was it real or was it magic?
- Is the spring from which FS draws it’s name really some type of well, hot spring heated by magma flows, or a hot spring heated by some form of magic?
Magic: Well done, medium well, or rare?
- How much magic is there in FS, and how does the populace react to it?
Preisthoods: Is less really more?
- How many priesthoods does FS have? And what do you need to have, to be called a priesthood?

Questions still plaguing us:

How was Fountainspring founded? Who discovered the artiesan well? How did they find it? Why did they name the town after it?
What famous visitors has the town had? Why were they there? Were they recognized by any of the town’s inhabitants? Are they related to any of the town’s inhabitants? Do any personages of note have secret (or not so secret) homes in Fountainspring? None of the locations with in Fountainspring have really been detailed to any extent, so feel free to design some of the buildings, taverns, blacksmith shops, etc..

Till next, happy plotting!
-Mark McKibben manzabar@avalon.net
http://www.avalon.net/~manzabar

“Well, you just have to know these things, when you’re a king, you know.”

Monday, March 9, 2009

Re: The Haughtiness of Elves

Date: Sun, 05 Dec 99 10:31AM PST
From: Scott Casper Add To Address Book Add To Junk Mail
To: GREYTALK@MITVMA.MIT.EDU
Subject: Re: [GREYTALK] The Haughtiness of Elves

Hi again!

Gary Welsh wrote:
>It is interesting to hear people's different takes on the elves. Here is my take on the haughtiness of
>elves, particularly in regards to the grey elves of Celene. First, put yourself in their shoes:

I'd rather not. I've been biting my tongue, trying to avoid the urge to rip on elves again. Can't...resist...

>You are an elf.

NOOOO!!!!

>You have lived in Celene your entire life, which is several centuries. You are a grey elf. By your
>race's standards, you are in your early middle years.
>You can expect to live another thousand years.

Not likely. Sure, their bodies can theoretically hold out for centuries, but the woosies are more likely to die from the pain if they stub their toe.

>Many of the dwellings in Celene have been carefully >crafted, built, and even grown for many milleniums.

Lawful dwarves have carefully constructed dwellings, millenia in the making. Chaotic elves have slap-dash houses, thrown together in as much time as they can concentrate on one thing, which isn't long. After a while they tire of that dwelling and move on to another.

>[snip]Now really you have nothing *against* these humans -- most of them are ignorant, not evil -- but
>you do not want them in your backyard.

Not that there's anything elves can do about it. At least it's a step up from getting pushed around by kobolds.

>[more snips]That is my take on the attitude of a typical Celenese elf. There is nothing the slightest
>bit evil in there, just a bit of snobbery and isolationism.

The fact that a race so obnoxious could be so snobbish makes me hate them with a passion. That's why I take such an extreme approach. Elves don't get to be snobs because they're nothing but worthless slave stock, to be killed and eaten when any race wants a light snack.

>Also, Celene isn't racist -- its populace is made up of grey elves, wood elves, gnomes, halflings, half-
>elves and humans. There are humans and half-elves in the Celenese military forces. People seem to forget that Celene is *not* an isolationist country of grey
>elves -- it *is* an isolationist country of several races, whose monarch is an elf.

That's an excellent point, and may make Celene easier for me to swallow. The gnomes, halflings, and humans probably are the true rulers of Celene, with the elves being their slaves. The queen is probably a figure-head only, appointed by the other races just to mock the elves.

>[more snips]Those who try get into Celene uninvited are targeted with Sleep, Charm and Forget spells, and then are harmlessly deposited in the forest outside
>the kingdom's borders. Those that persist disappear...

But only if they are low level. Mid-level PCs resist the Sleep spells, make their saves against the other spells, and target the elves by the sound of their spell-casting.

Scott "Volstagg" Casper

Yak-Men serve elf buffet-style...

Yaklar's Elves; Ghaldom

Subject: [GREYTALK] Yaklar's Elves; Ghaldom
Date: Wed, 2 Jun 1999 19:20:14 -0500
From: webmaster@GILDED-UNICORN.COM
Reply-To: The GREYtalk Discussion List

Ghaldom Fae {Elvish Tribes}

Role: The Great Weaver created the Ghaldom to guard the wild areas of the forest and glade. Just as the Droltain (Dwarves, Gnomes and 1/2lings) have thrived in their environment, so too have the Ghaldoman people flourished in the wild lands. This race has divided into six different sub cultures or tribes referred to as Fae.

The Tallor Fae are only a scattered remnant of the most magickal Fae of the Ghaldom. The only True Elves, with pointed ears, red hair and golden eyes, traits which dominate any racial mix. A true blood Tallor Fae stands about 6'5" to 7' tall as well. The Tallor Fae were believed to be lost after the City of Nimril was destroyed by some cataclysm. Now only the occasional half-breed will show some of the great power once wielded by this noble Fae.

Skills associated with the Tallor Fae are as follows:
General: Gem Crafting, Metal Working, Weapon Crafting.
Combat: Long Blades (Swords), Long Spears.
Majikal: Prime Element: Spirit Base Element: Fire

The Talath Fae are the most common members of the Fae who control the Blood Wood. Often referred to as Halflings, Gnomes, Brownies, Dryads, Nymphs or simply the Folk. Typically, not standing over 4' tall with dark hair and eyes of deep green or brown the Tallath Fae are the most social of all the Ghaldoman sub cultures.

Skills associated with the Talath Fae are as follows:
General: Cooking, Dancing, Seduction, Camouflage, Wood Lore, Mining
Combat: Blades, Pole Arms, Bows, Small Projectiles (Stones, Darts, etc )
Majikal: Prime Element: Spirit Base Element: Earth

The Maenal Fae are winged Ghaldom who inhabit the Feather Spur Mountains near
the Blood Wood. Usually the Maenal stand between 4' and 6' tall. White hair is
common as are feathers. Feathered wings vary, usually they extend at least equal
to the height of the individual who uses them.

Skills associated with the Maenal Fae are as follows:
General: Aerial Maneuvering, Acrobatics, Musical Instrument, Scouting, Hunting.
Combat: Aerial Combat, Blades, Bows, Pole Arms, Unarmed Combat.
Majikal: Prime Element: Spirit Base Element: Air

The Gaer Fae are aquatic residents of the Tumorn Inlet. This Aquatic variation of the Ghaldom often appears as Nerids or Merfolk. Sporting hair colors as varied as their home waters typically the skin coloration is similar shades.

Skills associated with the Gaer Fae are as follows:
General: Swimming, Aquatic Maneuvering, Boating, Boat Wright, Signaling
Combat: Aquatic Combat, Pole Arms, Blades.
Majikal: Prime Element: Spirit Base Element: Water

The Tar Fae are the elders of the Ghaldom. Living in Maelaar, capitol of the
Blood Wood, all of the various Fae have representatives among the Tar Fae. The Tar Fae act as Lore Masters for their respective tribe. Typically each member of the Tar Fae have a specific field of expertise in which they excel. If ever anyone requires lore the most valuable source besides the Mirlatus are the Tar Fae.

Being a subset of all the existing tribes of Ghaldom the skills possessed by
the Tar Fae are for the most part typical to their individual tribe with the
exception of their specific field in which they have spent their life studying.

Skills associated with the Tar Fae are as follows:
General: Any Lore at +1 level, Other as per tribal suggestion.
Combat: Typically none. On occasion Small Blades, Bows or as per Tribal list.
Majikal: As per tribe.

The Khemir Fae or The Fallen or Lost Ones is made up of any member of the
Ghaldom that renounce the Ghaldoman Traditions. The most recent of the various
tribes to appear, these free souls range from criminals to adventurers out to
see the world for the first time. Many of the other Ghaldom blame the influence
of the Human races o their young for this groups recent departure from the Traditions.

This tribe is actually another subset of the entire Ghaldom race. Just as the
Tar Fae represent the best of the Ghaldoman Traditions, the Khemir Fae represent the less desirable traits in Ghaldoman Society. These individuals will still be the typical Ghaldom of the appropriate tribe but will have some trait which kept them from fitting into the fabric of Ghaldom life.

Unbridled curiosity, use of Necrose {the 'Dark Side'}, refusal to follow the
Traditions or even some true criminal behavior have caused the expulsion of the
individual from their tribe.

Skills associated with the Khemir Fae are as follows:
General: As per Tribe, Disguise, Burglary, Lock Picking, Stealth, Guile
Combat: As per Tribe, Assassination Skills, Ambush
Majikal: Prime Element: Any Base Element: As per tribe.

I have more but have to find it first. All this should be easily translated for
AD&D use. Feel free to modify, comment or, yes, even rant. I was about 19 when i
began to develop this race and the system in which to run them.

As for the R.Jordan stuff. Well it's probably in the same place with the Ghaldom
history and stuff. I'll let everyone know when i find it.

Hey, Mr. Casper, I'm working on that Yakman DMD for you >};^)

Later all,
Yaklar, High Priest and Wanna be World Maker...
--
Questions? Comments? Complaints? Conspiracy Theories?

Breakdown of Early Greytalk Authors

[Archivist's note: The following is a breakdown of who posted and how many times in the early days of the Greytalk listserv, up to Dec. 9, 1995. This information was culled from the old Greytalk Archives for an aborted series of articles/interviews about the history of the listserv for the Canonfire website - S.C.]

Gary Holian – 10
Greg Bernath – 1
Kirt Wackford – 6
Joe Katzman – 5
“Bromo” - 9
“Whir” - 2
N. Farris – 2
“Leseney” - 3
Eric Boyd – 6
“Berman” - 2
Robert Hibbert – 1
R. Dawson – 3
Peter Froehlich – 1
“Delmar Watkins” - 1
Marios “Chrysop” - 4
Peter Gourlay – 1
Ken Lipka – 4
Blazs Misangyi – 1
“Astolfo” - 1
Stephen Nedojadlo – 3
R. Larson – 1
Erik Mona – 3
Paul Haust – 2
Jay – 1
Rob Douglas - 1