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T O P I C    R E V I E W
AuldDragon Posted - 12 Feb 2014 : 10:35:26
I've been a huge fan of the Faiths & Avatars format created by Julia Martin and Eric Boyd, and I always wanted a fourth book to be published, companion to Faiths & Avatars, Powers & Pantheons, and Demihuman Deities. Since there's no chance now of seeing an official one, I decided to create my own, updating the deities from DMGR4 Monster Mythology, as well as some others. I write these from the point of view of 2nd Edition, incorporating primarily only that canon, and focusing on the whole 2e multiverse, so where possible, I mention canon from all 2nd Edition settings. I post the main entries on my blog, and then will update this thread.

If you’ve been enjoying these entries, please consider supporting the project on Patreon or Ko-Fi:
https://www.patreon.com/MonsterMythology
https://ko-fi.com/aulddragon

Bugbear (and Other) Pantheon:
Grankhul the Hunter: http://bit.ly/1TTie59
Hruggek the Decapitator: http://bit.ly/1XX3cus
Meriadar the Patient One: http://bit.ly/1RTjyNC
Skiggaret the Deranged One: http://bit.ly/1X3bgdU
Stalker, the Hateful Shadow: http://bit.ly/1O7VbB3

Goblin Pantheon:
Bargrivyek the Peacekeeper: http://bit.ly/1U3efkG
Khugorbaeyag the Overseer: http://bit.ly/24ne4Cb
Maglubiyet the Mighty One: http://bit.ly/1TNW2UB
Nomog-Geaya the General: http://bit.ly/1ss21aV

Kobold and Urd Pantheon:
Dakarnok the Raider: http://bit.ly/1UBjZAN
Gaknulak the Trapmaker: http://bit.ly/1TTjqVU
Kuraulyek the Horned Thief: http://bit.ly/1PaE0de
Kurtulmak the Cunning: http://bit.ly/1PsgPAp

Orcish Pantheon:
Bahgtru the Leg-Breaker: http://bit.ly/1UmIK0I
Gruumsh One-Eye: http://bit.ly/1VCla5n
Ilneval the Horde Leader: http://bit.ly/24nfwV7
Luthic the Cave Mother: http://bit.ly/1UBjd6N
Shargaas the Night Lord: http://bit.ly/1sTJO5O
Yurtrus White-Hands: http://bit.ly/25FbI7s

The Ordning:
Annam the All-Father: http://bit.ly/1U0cJOR
Diancastra, the Wanton Wanderer: http://bit.ly/1PaEzUo
Grolantor the Steading Lord: http://bit.ly/1U3fGQ5
Grond Peaksmasher: http://bit.ly/24nggt6
Hiatea the Huntress: http://bit.ly/1XpIe9p
Iallanis the Tender One: http://bit.ly/1X3cvd4
Karontor the Deformed One: http://bit.ly/1O7VU5v
Memnor the Deceiver: http://bit.ly/1UBjLcS
Skoreaus Stonebones, the Living Rock: http://bit.ly/1UBjLcS
Stronmaus the Storm Lord: http://bit.ly/289ALyn
Surtr the Black: http://bit.ly/289ABqP
Thrym, the King of Ice: http://bit.ly/25Corob

Gnoll Pantheon:
Gorellik the Loner: http://bit.ly/1UBjXZy
Refnara the Moon-Biter: http://bit.ly/1PspJ11
Yeenoghu the Demon Prince of Gnolls: http://bit.ly/1UBk87a

Ogre Pantheon:
Mirklak the Orcslayer: http://bit.ly/1VCpPnK
Vaprak the Destroyer: http://bit.ly/1TTm1zk
Ysshara the Lorekeeper: http://bit.ly/1t7fJk7

Interlopers on the Giant Pantheon:
Baphomet, Demon Lord of Minotaurs: http://bit.ly/1U3lSrf
Kostchtchie, the Demon Prince of Wrath: http://bit.ly/1XpQeHa

Draconic Pantheon (Io's Children):
Aasterinian, the Messenger of Io: http://bit.ly/1XpQuWH
Arcanic the Learned: http://bit.ly/1WzDlK9
Astilabor the Hoardmistress: http://bit.ly/1PaJGDQ
Bahamut the Platinum Dragon: http://bit.ly/2gcEmW6
Chronepsis the Death Dragon: http://bit.ly/1O7Yx7l
Elemtia the Tempest: http://bit.ly/1U3m1uJ
Faluzure the Night Dragon: http://bit.ly/1ZcdvtA
Garyx the Firelord: http://bit.ly/1X3g6In
Hlal the Jester: http://bit.ly/2aI5MoG
Io the Ninefold Dragon: http://bit.ly/2iuNgmv
Kalzareinad, The Keeper of Dark Wonders: http://bit.ly/1VCqHc5
Kereska Wonderbringer: http://bit.ly/2fbhbMv
Lendys the Balancer: http://bit.ly/1U3nzos
Rais, The Cogitative One: http://bit.ly/20Y18Sg
Sardior the Ruby Dragon: http://bit.ly/2bMvFiS
Tamara the Merciful: http://bit.ly/2dMW2KH
Task the Wrester: http://bit.ly/29aUTaK
Tiamat the Chromatic Dragon: http://bit.ly/22DC4Bx
Zorquan the High One: http://bit.ly/1UjK9W9

Aerial Deities:
Jazirian the Eternal Serpent: http://bit.ly/1UmSlo6
Koriel the Vigilant: http://bit.ly/2kszfGg
Stillsong the Singing Sphere: http://bit.ly/2pAAh5J

Aquatic Deities:
Anguileusis the Abiding One: http://bit.ly/2lcZsdz
Blibdoolpoolp the Sea Mother: http://bit.ly/2tK3Pzc
Demogorgon, the Prince of Demons: http://bit.ly/2V7sVn3
Eadro the Deliverer: http://bit.ly/Eadro
Ilxendren the Demonray: http://bit.ly/2svK8MH
Panzuriel the Enslaver: http://bit.ly/2CJf7IQ
Persana, Guardian of the Deep: http://bit.ly/2OXzuFW
Sekolah the Great Shark: http://bit.ly/2iyzGR3
Surminare the Selkie Queen: http://bit.ly/2nsA7cU
Trishina the Waverider: http://bit.ly/1t7h0rg
Water Lion the Sharkslayer: http://bit.ly/2x7BNwt

Avian Deities:
Krocaa the Crimsonfeather: http://bit.ly/2BL3ddK
Quorlinn the Filcher: http://bit.ly/2iTi41K
Remnis, the Great Lord of the Eagles: http://bit.ly/2J4orfd
Syranita, Mistress of the Aarakocra: http://bit.ly/2qFphWC

Reptilian and Amphibian Deities:
Laogzed the Devourer: http://bit.ly/2vo4pox
Merrshaulk the Serpent Lord: http://bit.ly/Merrshaulk
Parrafaire the Naga Prince: http://bit.ly/2epLsHv
Ramenos the Great Frog: http://bit.ly/1sTUIsi
Semuanya the Survivor: http://bit.ly/2SzBYfM
Sess'innek the Emperor Lizard: http://bit.ly/2EuSHcW
Shekinester the Three-Faced Queen: http://bit.ly/Shekinester

Centaur Pantheon:
Brilros the Battle Stallion: http://bit.ly/2XmYvhK
Chitza-Atlan, the Guardian of the Gateway to the Underworld: http://bit.ly/2NCr5HT
Fanthros Storm-Hooves: http://bit.ly/2KKZH9m
Kheiron the Educator: http://bit.ly/35T1VNf
Linroth Fleet-Hoof: http://bit.ly/2PvXvUv
Naharra the Mother-Mare: http://bit.ly/32kSzIc
Skerrit the Hoofed Lord: http://bit.ly/1t7gQQH

Lycanthrope Pantheon:
Balador the Master of Mead: http://bit.ly/2MMJ7qp
Daragor the Wolflord: http://bit.ly/2GIbUL7
Eshebala the Vixen Queen: http://bit.ly/2LoZOLw
Ferrix the Prowler: http://bit.ly/2N5fGSg
Squerrik the Ratlord: http://bit.ly/24nmVDV

Seelie Court:
Caoimhin the Kindly: http://bit.ly/2obZk0g
Damh the Horned Beast: http://bit.ly/2xy2LQx
Eachthighern the Unicorn Lord: https://bit.ly/33ja8M2
Emmantiensien the Treant-King: https://bit.ly/2wKVVKH
Fionnghuala the Mistress of Swans: http://bit.ly/20Y1bNS
Nathair Sgiathach the Prankster: http://bit.ly/2ZOPwYY
Oberon the Faerie King: https://bit.ly/3wiU1L7
Squelaiche the Court Jester: https://bit.ly/3gkuybw
Tapann the Undying: https://bit.ly/3zmugeL
Titania the Faerie Queen: https://bit.ly/3jzLU8W
Verenestra the Oak Princess: http://bit.ly/2L8jTGz

Unseelie Court
The Queen of Air and Darkness: https://bit.ly/3onJXPp

Beholder Pantheon:
Great Mother, the Hive Spawner: http://bit.ly/2UgrWn2
Gzemnid the Gas Giant: http://bit.ly/2MjGnS1

Deities “missing” from Demihuman Deities:
Alathrien Druanna, the Rune Mistress: https://bit.ly/34BKFNK
Araleth Letheranil the Prince of Stars: https://bit.ly/3lxhFxY
Cador the Shadow Knife: https://bit.ly/3qhraUh
Darahl Firecloak the Even-Tempered: https://bit.ly/3R6tXOA
Diinkarazan, the Mad God: https://bit.ly/3pivLWG
Diirinka the Betrayer: http://bit.ly/387V7Mo
Kavor the Lord of Gravity: http://bit.ly/3IAVHGR
Keptolo the Eager Consort: https://bit.ly/3KDxMXE
Kirith Sotheril the Magess: https://bit.ly/3HxwKcP
Mythrien Sarath, the Watcher over Mythals: https://bit.ly/3NterII
Naralis Analor, the Watcher of Souls: http://bit.ly/3r5IAmR
Nebelun the Meddler: http://bit.ly/1TO1req
Rellavar Danuvien, the Frost Sprite King: https://bit.ly/3yxZo92
Tarsellis Meunniduin the Lord of the Mountains: https://bit.ly/3gWWkR0
Tethrin Veraldé the Shining One: http://bit.ly/2MjGnS1
Zinzerena the Hunted: https://bit.ly/49yWDYu

Myconid Pantheon:
Psilofyr the Spore Lord: https://bit.ly/2Dnsl0L

Illithid Pantheon:
Ilsensine, the Great Brain: https://bit.ly/3UprrVi
Maanzecorian

Undead Deities:
Kanchelsis the Lord of Vampires: https://bit.ly/3fs3n37
Mellifleur the Lich-Lord: https://bit.ly/34oq2I0
Orcus, the Demon Prince of Undeath: https://bit.ly/42n1tU5

Elemental Deities
Ben-hadar, the Prince of Good Water: https://bit.ly/48WXHVR
Chan, the Princess of Good Air: https://bit.ly/44NypqR
Cryonax the Prince of Evil Ice: https://bit.ly/3uKZdr9
The Elder Elemental God
Ogremoch, the Prince of Evil Earth: http://bit.ly/3vyfL6G
Olhydra the Princess of Evil Water: https://bit.ly/3cSv2ZN
Yan-C-Bin, the Prince of Evil Air: https://bit.ly/3WmIjfC
Zaaman Rul, the Prince of Good Fire: https://bit.ly/3sevPMD

Miscellaneous Dark Deities:
Cegilune the Hag Goddess: https://bit.ly/457mi7y
The Dark God at the End of All Things: https://bit.ly/48EtOZB
Juiblex the Faceless Lord: https://bit.ly/3LALnP9
Piscaethces the Blood Queen: https://bit.ly/3Z0XY5U
Shami-Amourae, the Demon Princess of Eros: https://bit.ly/3DuJl14

Neogi Pantheon
Kil’lix the Ambitious: http://bit.ly/3td5z0Q
Kr’tx the Flaming Master: https://bit.ly/3jVvjsZ
P'kk the Dominator: https://bit.ly/3EO5R3t
Thrig’ki the Rapacious: https://bit.ly/2QCBolt
T’zen’kil the Lasher: https://bit.ly/3fAXYEn

Insectoid and Arthropod Deities
Klikral, the Master of the Mound: https://bit.ly/443SxVF
30   L A T E S T    R E P L I E S    (Newest First)
AuldDragon Posted - 11 Jun 2024 : 16:09:07
quote:
Originally posted by sleyvas

Snipping to this one section, as I'd like to add that you convinced me on this. I won't say that I don't want ceremorphosis. I will say that I like the idea that making it that they can more quickly create a lesser form of mind flayer via ceremorphosis of certain humanoid races. Making it that this "lesser" form is the kind most commonly found, and then adding that they can "advance" to the "more powerful form" by consuming brains or somesuch works for me. They might commonly make the "lesser" form via ceremorphosis to keep their ranks full. Maybe those that grow naturally have more of a likelihood to become ulitharids.



That could definitely work. Back in 2e there weren't very many variations from ceremorphosis (and I think they all showed up in the Illithiad), so I haven't had to think to much about those variants. :)

Jeff
sleyvas Posted - 10 Jun 2024 : 21:14:57
quote:
Originally posted by AuldDragon

quote:
Originally posted by sleyvas

Along similar veins, do you think Ilsensine's priesthood pushes for experimentation in creating ceremorphs of other races, or do they consider this kind of experimentation nothing more than we would of someone trying to create a new technology and not "divinely guided" in any way?



Definitely the latter, but more as a tendency than an absolute. Since the Creeds that develop in any given community can vary, as can alliances between the Creeds, there would definitely be some priests that would engage in those activities, and in some communities they might develop an ex post facto "divine" reasoning to support it if they're allied to the Creed that does such things.

I personally really dislike ceremorphosis, to be honest, and that's exactly one of those personal views that I don't want to inject into these writeups. That said, you'll note that I made no mention of it either way, so this material can be used with ceremorphosis or not. :D

The main reason I dislike it is that it creates an inescapable "original sin" that any illithid who chooses the path of not being evil needs to contend with; it means advocating for good is *also* advocating for the extinction of their entire race. The easiest way IMO to reconcile the two would be to treat ceremorphosis as a "shortcut" to adulthood for an illithid, where normal tadpole growth would take far longer. That does mean that it would need to alter the origin of Neothelids; my solution here is to assume that Neothelids are neotenous illithid tadpoles, retaining juvenile aspects into adulthood the same way that axolotls do, but as an accident rather than an evolutionary change affecting the whole species.

I like illithids being, as a society, a thoroughly evil and malicious bunch (who can also work with others as is the case in Spelljammer), but still with the *possibility* of redemption that some members of the race might actually work towards (and of course then get exiled if not killed). It creates a more interesting civilization than one inextricably evil.

Jeff



Snipping to this one section, as I'd like to add that you convinced me on this. I won't say that I don't want ceremorphosis. I will say that I like the idea that making it that they can more quickly create a lesser form of mind flayer via ceremorphosis of certain humanoid races. Making it that this "lesser" form is the kind most commonly found, and then adding that they can "advance" to the "more powerful form" by consuming brains or somesuch works for me. They might commonly make the "lesser" form via ceremorphosis to keep their ranks full. Maybe those that grow naturally have more of a likelihood to become ulitharids.
AuldDragon Posted - 07 Jun 2024 : 01:28:23
Thank you! :D

Jeff
NyluenathaStareyes Posted - 07 Jun 2024 : 01:14:30
Ok hi just joining into this to say WOW, amazing work Auld Dragon. I just spent far too much time catching up on all of this thread and well..yeah. Amazing!
AuldDragon Posted - 02 May 2024 : 19:00:54
quote:
Originally posted by sleyvas

Nice research. I didn't know the stuff about Clusterspace holding an avatar of Ilsensine captive and trying to drain his powers.


Hmm, maybe I need to rewrite that section, because they're actually trying to reinvigorate the avatar (this is connected to one of the two epic-style adventures in the boxed set). In the original material, it was Lugribossk, but the Illithiad changed Lugribossk into one of Ilsensine's proxies. Unfortunately, that makes very little sense in the context of the Astromundi Cluster; when the Illithiad mentioned Astromundi I was really excited, but then really let down that it basically was like "this is all wrong" and didn't do anything to integrate and merge the material. IMO, having Lugribossk as an alias of Ilsensine works best for having the material actually work without eliminating it altogether.

quote:
Originally posted by sleyvas

I know that you try to be true to the source material without too much addition of your own thoughts, which is appreciated. But, it would be nice to hear your own thoughts on a few things. I wonder how much you think Ilsensine is involved with the spelljamming of the race? As a for instance, back in 2e the illithid ships were purely constructs (i.e. wood and other materials made into a ship). Newer editions beyond second edition seems to be hinting that nautiloids are less of a construct and more of a grown being.


I see Ilsensine as being very hands(tentacles)-off, letting illithids mostly work towards their total domination of creation in their own way and in their own time. Like, he sees it as an inevitability, so why sweat the small stuff kind of attitude.

As for the Nautiloids, I think there's some new material that portrays the living ones as very ancient versions, essentially a lost technology. That said, I don't like the living ones. At all. Even though they look similar, it completely changes their usage; you can't ram another ship with them, which is the use of the original's tentacle-like forward element, which is also a really nice analogy to the way illithids eat without it being literally the same. Plus, having living nautiloids would allow illithids to freely leave the Astromundi Cluster, something only elves can do as a singular faction. Finally, I feel like it adds too much of a modern scifi element to something I like to keep very fantastical and Age of Sail in feeling.

quote:
Originally posted by sleyvas

Also, within spelljammer there were the different helm types, and both series helms and pool helms were noted as being created by illithids (with pool helms being less of a "device" and more of a "living magic creation" resembling an elder brain and its pool. Do you think Ilsensine and/or his priesthood might have been behind DEVELOPING these new "living technologies"?


So Pool Helms are definitely a development of the illithids, but the Series Helms are very likely not. They still need to get them from the Arcane, and Series Helms are race specific; any race that has innate powers can get tailored series helms from the Arcane, which are not useable by other races. For example, illithids can't use hurwaeti series helms and vice versa. There's a specific Creed in the Illithiad that deals with developing new devices, and they would be the ones who created the Pool Helms most likely (probably on Falx). In some communities, the Venerator Creed and that one could be merged, and in such places, they would be involved, but generally not. Illithid society seems to be very segmented from the way the Illithiad is written.

Now, that's not to say they would never be involved; illithid society is also VERY political, with the different Creeds working together or against each other for a whole host of very specific local reasons, so they could very well be involved in one community, and deeply opposed to such creations in another community.

quote:
Originally posted by sleyvas

Along similar veins, do you think Ilsensine's priesthood pushes for experimentation in creating ceremorphs of other races, or do they consider this kind of experimentation nothing more than we would of someone trying to create a new technology and not "divinely guided" in any way?



Definitely the latter, but more as a tendency than an absolute. Since the Creeds that develop in any given community can vary, as can alliances between the Creeds, there would definitely be some priests that would engage in those activities, and in some communities they might develop an ex post facto "divine" reasoning to support it if they're allied to the Creed that does such things.

I personally really dislike ceremorphosis, to be honest, and that's exactly one of those personal views that I don't want to inject into these writeups. That said, you'll note that I made no mention of it either way, so this material can be used with ceremorphosis or not. :D

The main reason I dislike it is that it creates an inescapable "original sin" that any illithid who chooses the path of not being evil needs to contend with; it means advocating for good is *also* advocating for the extinction of their entire race. The easiest way IMO to reconcile the two would be to treat ceremorphosis as a "shortcut" to adulthood for an illithid, where normal tadpole growth would take far longer. That does mean that it would need to alter the origin of Neothelids; my solution here is to assume that Neothelids are neotenous illithid tadpoles, retaining juvenile aspects into adulthood the same way that axolotls do, but as an accident rather than an evolutionary change affecting the whole species.

I like illithids being, as a society, a thoroughly evil and malicious bunch (who can also work with others as is the case in Spelljammer), but still with the *possibility* of redemption that some members of the race might actually work towards (and of course then get exiled if not killed). It creates a more interesting civilization than one inextricably evil.

Jeff
sleyvas Posted - 02 May 2024 : 14:53:56
quote:
Originally posted by AuldDragon

Ilsensine, the Great Brain: https://bit.ly/3UprrVi

The terrible and powerful patron of the illithids is Ilsensine, the Great Brain. A deity of pure mental energy, it exhorts its followers to take their rightful place of domination over all other races of the multiverse. There’s been a lot written about illithids over the years, so this one took a lot of research and I’m pretty sure I still missed a lot of potentially relevant material, but it was still a lot of fun to write!

Jeff



Nice research. I didn't know the stuff about Clusterspace holding an avatar of Ilsensine captive and trying to drain his powers.

I know that you try to be true to the source material without too much addition of your own thoughts, which is appreciated. But, it would be nice to hear your own thoughts on a few things. I wonder how much you think Ilsensine is involved with the spelljamming of the race? As a for instance, back in 2e the illithid ships were purely constructs (i.e. wood and other materials made into a ship). Newer editions beyond second edition seems to be hinting that nautiloids are less of a construct and more of a grown being. Also, within spelljammer there were the different helm types, and both series helms and pool helms were noted as being created by illithids (with pool helms being less of a "device" and more of a "living magic creation" resembling an elder brain and its pool. Do you think Ilsensine and/or his priesthood might have been behind DEVELOPING these new "living technologies"? Along similar veins, do you think Ilsensine's priesthood pushes for experimentation in creating ceremorphs of other races, or do they consider this kind of experimentation nothing more than we would of someone trying to create a new technology and not "divinely guided" in any way?
AuldDragon Posted - 01 May 2024 : 23:25:20
Ilsensine, the Great Brain: https://bit.ly/3UprrVi

The terrible and powerful patron of the illithids is Ilsensine, the Great Brain. A deity of pure mental energy, it exhorts its followers to take their rightful place of domination over all other races of the multiverse. There’s been a lot written about illithids over the years, so this one took a lot of research and I’m pretty sure I still missed a lot of potentially relevant material, but it was still a lot of fun to write!

Jeff
AuldDragon Posted - 02 Mar 2024 : 16:18:18
quote:
Originally posted by Brimstone

I like this last one.



Thanks! She was a lot of fun to write. :D
Brimstone Posted - 02 Mar 2024 : 07:10:32
I like this last one.
AuldDragon Posted - 01 Mar 2024 : 20:48:47
Zinzerena the Hunted: https://bit.ly/49yWDYu

A recent addition to the drow pantheon, Zinzerena is an outsider even among that chaotic and fractured group of powers. Once a figure in heroic legends, she managed to ascend through trickery, and has been avoiding other members of the pantheon and causing chaos among drow cities ever since. I emphasized her more neutral aspects, which I think would be coming to the fore with her recent loss of power to Lolth.

Jeff
AuldDragon Posted - 01 Feb 2024 : 23:53:14
Ben-hadar, the Prince of Good Water: https://bit.ly/48WXHVR

The third of the good archomentals is Ben-hadar, an arrogant and provincial ruler who many believe pushes the boundaries of what is considered good. While he does care for the well-being of his followers, he has little interest in what happens beyond the borders of the Plane of Water.

Jeff
sleyvas Posted - 03 Jan 2024 : 15:01:37
I never have read through Night Below, but I've always heard good things. I have skimmed it though when there were references. It seems I need to look. I know a year or five back we were discussing here this idea of the black diamonds and Markustay's idea of the "regalia of winter", but there was also a lot of discussion of Tharizdun and the 4e idea of the formation of the Abyss by a "Shard of Pure Evil" used to corrupt the elemental chaos. There was also a "primordial" who was imprisoned and known as Timesus the Black Star also included in 4e lore as being made of black crystal that was imprisoned and broken into pieces, but killed during the dawn war. We also have this idea presented in a lot of the 5e adventures of "black/dark crystals" that are hinted to have some ability to enable time travel and a lot of other things... so I agree having these things as some form of "tool" that "the Dark God" / Tharizdun has been somehow

Along these same lines, we've noted a lot of similarities between Kiaransalee, the Raven Queen, the QoA&D, Auril, and Ereshkigal ... and perhaps rather than relating them as "the same being", because there are similarities but differences... it might perhaps be better to give them all some links back to these kind of corrupting artifacts. We might even find out that the "Tenebrous" that "brought Orcus back" was in fact something where Orcus used one of these black diamonds in some form of "contingency" should he be killed so that he could then resurrect his own godly nature. Basically, a lot of death / winter / darkness gods may have been touched by these "black diamonds" ... at which time the Dark God took advantage of this to use them to try and advance his goals... possibly acting to speak to them in a way similar to how Fistandantilus spoke to Raistlin or how binders get influenced subtly. Some of them embrace this... some break away eventually.

All of that to somewhat say that it could be interesting to link this crystal in a lot of other ways besides the divine as well. We could for instance find out that "the death moon orb" that had a corrupting influence that turned people steadily more evil.... was perhaps made of this "black diamond" material. Since Larloch supposedly made the "death moon orb", we might find out that he himself had some kind of involvement at some point with these materials as well and was possibly corrupted at some point.

SIDENOTE: sorry to hijack the thread just a little... its just this topic made some ideas come to mind and I wanted to jot down my thoughts.

If "The Dark God" / Tharizdun were linked to the black diamond references and they did corrupt a lot of other beings... it occurs to me that both the Raven Queen and Kiaransalee are noted as having worked against orcus in the past (and Kiaransalee specifically used magic to erase Orcus' references, which removed him, and later same was done to her). Both also would seem to fit the bill of having been influenced by such things. So, perhaps these instances were not the gods being destroyed, but rather imprisoned... using power of Tharizdun... and giving Tharizdun some temporary respite from his own prison. This might change the nature of these "black diamonds" and provide a good explanation/mechanic to explain how some storylines have happened, in that these times when the gods are forgotten they are being imprisoned near or in the place where Tharizdun is held temporarily. Perhaps some free themselves as Orcus did. Perhaps others can only be held until some planar conjunction happens and then they get released....... which could also be used as an explanation in FR for the disappearance of a lot of gods suddenly and their return ala spellplague/second sundering
AuldDragon Posted - 02 Jan 2024 : 21:54:06
quote:
Originally posted by sleyvas

Ancient temples that served as active centers of worship for centuries or that have a number of undead guardians are often imbued with much dark magic. Dark mists and biting cold fill the sanctified area, reducing all forms of light, and many magical traps and curses fill the halls and chambers. In particular, the often have caches of rare black diamonds that are cursed to transform those who would rob these treasures into undead servants of the Dark God.

I love this in that it almost seems like you are making a tie to the Queen of Air and Darkness and how she became an unseen being or area of shadowy blackness on a throne. One thing Markustay came up with that I loved and felt like it would be great to use was the idea that the QoA&D had this "regalia of winter" as some form of "cursed artifacts" that were being used to corrupt divine entities, such that some of them turned exceptionally dark and others "went dark but are now repenting".


That temple description was drawn from Night Below, which was fairly explicit in naming the Dark God as Tharizdun from Greyhawk. The potential connection with the Queen of Air and Darkness was specified by Sargent as well, and he included a large number of cursed black diamonds in the Night Below adventure, so I think the Dark God being responsible (intentionally or unintentionally) is pretty clear.


quote:
Originally posted by sleyvas

If we extended that a little differently and linked these things back to this god, and stated that he does THIS because he CAN'T act as a god and is corrupting the divine in order to use them somewhat like puppets or servants in hopes of eventually freeing himself. The instances where he temporarily manifests an avatar might be seen as extended if he's able to act through a god in the same way that the gods filled the bodies of mortals during the ToT.... or something like what happens with a 3rd edition binder who binds a vestige where an entity shares a body and can influence the being residing in it.



I would mostly handle the Dark God as having very little agency and no solid plans because his prison is so very tight. But what he can do is create "seeds" that he hopes have negative effects that further his goals. For example, the Black Diamond of the Queen of Air and Darkness was essentially just a generically corrupting artifact of great power, and it just happened to find its way into her hands by circumstance, sort of like how the One Ring just happened to find its way into Smeagol's, Bilbo's, and Frodo's hands rather than intentionally trying to get into their hands specifically. To spice things up, I created the idea that the Dark God's prison may periodically (over periods of hundreds of years, with planetary conjunctions or when ill-omened comets appear, etc.) weaken just enough for him to reach out a finger and touch the Prime briefly, and in this time his goal tends to be to just lay more seeds like the Black Diamond, but of various power levels, with the goal of increasing the rate of destruction of the multiverse. I think players would be operating against the plans of the followers of the Dark God rather than the Dark God's own plans. :)

Jeff
sleyvas Posted - 02 Jan 2024 : 20:30:31
quote:
Originally posted by AuldDragon

The Dark God at the End of All Things: https://bit.ly/48EtOZB

The cold of winter brings the enigmatic and imprisoned god of eternal darkness and decay, known simply as the Dark God. Said to have been imprisoned long ago in order to preserve all of creation, mythology also presents it as a being that will preside over the destruction of all things when he is eventually released.

Jeff



Ancient temples that served as active centers of worship for centuries or that have a number of undead guardians are often imbued with much dark magic. Dark mists and biting cold fill the sanctified area, reducing all forms of light, and many magical traps and curses fill the halls and chambers. In particular, the often have caches of rare black diamonds that are cursed to transform those who would rob these treasures into undead servants of the Dark God.

I love this in that it almost seems like you are making a tie to the Queen of Air and Darkness and how she became an unseen being or area of shadowy blackness on a throne. One thing Markustay came up with that I loved and felt like it would be great to use was the idea that the QoA&D had this "regalia of winter" as some form of "cursed artifacts" that were being used to corrupt divine entities, such that some of them turned exceptionally dark and others "went dark but are now repenting".

If we extended that a little differently and linked these things back to this god, and stated that he does THIS because he CAN'T act as a god and is corrupting the divine in order to use them somewhat like puppets or servants in hopes of eventually freeing himself. The instances where he temporarily manifests an avatar might be seen as extended if he's able to act through a god in the same way that the gods filled the bodies of mortals during the ToT.... or something like what happens with a 3rd edition binder who binds a vestige where an entity shares a body and can influence the being residing in it.
Brimstone Posted - 01 Jan 2024 : 06:49:21
Perfect for a new year!
AuldDragon Posted - 01 Jan 2024 : 06:28:13
The Dark God at the End of All Things: https://bit.ly/48EtOZB

The cold of winter brings the enigmatic and imprisoned god of eternal darkness and decay, known simply as the Dark God. Said to have been imprisoned long ago in order to preserve all of creation, mythology also presents it as a being that will preside over the destruction of all things when he is eventually released.

Jeff
AuldDragon Posted - 01 Dec 2023 : 06:42:33
Darahl Firecloak the Even-Tempered: https://bit.ly/3R6tXOA

One of the more interesting elven powers, and one who has estranged himself from his kin, is Darahl Firecloak. Once known as Tilvenar, a debacle with an evil artifact caused a great loss of status and led to him reinventing himself and looking outside the normal elven groups to rebuild his faith. Incorporated into this entry is a tidbit from Eric Boyd’s “Havens of Miyeritar,” available on DM’s Guild. Enjoy!

Jeff
AuldDragon Posted - 01 Nov 2023 : 05:54:02
Zaaman Rul, the Prince of Good Fire: https://bit.ly/3sevPMD

The weakest of the archomentals is Zaaman Rul, the prince of good fire creatures and rumored offspring of Imix. Representing the positive and beneficial aspects of fire, he perhaps naively attacked his father’s forces, but suffered a complete rout, forcing him into hiding until he can rebuild. Nothing like an underdog on the side of good to generate some excellent plot hooks!
AuldDragon Posted - 08 Oct 2023 : 20:17:02
quote:
Originally posted by nblanton

That was the first mention, but it was added into the core game mechanics after that in the latter part of 2E. Monstrous Compendium Annual Vol. IV included several monsters that were described as from the Far Realm.

Granted, in previously editions Lovecraftian horrors were typically depicted as from some random layer of the Abyss.



Those monsters are all from The Gates of Firestorm Peak. The MC Annuals collected monsters from adventures, magazines, and other products.

Jeff
nblanton Posted - 08 Oct 2023 : 04:30:14
quote:
It was not a thing at all. It appeared as a throwaway plot element in 1 (one) module: The Gates of Firestorm Peak (since the eponymous gates had to lead somewhere "no way no how").


That was the first mention, but it was added into the core game mechanics after that in the latter part of 2E. Monstrous Compendium Annual Vol. IV included several monsters that were described as from the Far Realm.

Granted, in previously editions Lovecraftian horrors were typically depicted as from some random layer of the Abyss.
TBeholder Posted - 07 Oct 2023 : 22:52:38
quote:
Originally posted by Azar

Honestly, I thought that ability was playing into the fantasy convention of Elves being less affected by (or even "impervious to", in specific instances) greed.

I thought that was playing into the fantasy convention of Dwarves and Elves not getting along.
AuldDragon Posted - 07 Oct 2023 : 16:25:17
quote:
Originally posted by Azar

Honestly, I thought that ability was playing into the fantasy convention of Elves being less affected by (or even "impervious to", in specific instances) greed.



I suppose it could be that, but considering half-elves aren't affected either, it strikes me as unlikely. But I don't know for sure. :)

Jeff
Azar Posted - 07 Oct 2023 : 11:23:19
quote:
Originally posted by AuldDragon

quote:
Originally posted by Azar

Why are Half-Elves and Elves unaffected by Abbathor's ability to arouse treasure lust in the mortal races?



It's not that elves and half-elves are specifically excluded from the power; it only affects the small races (all of whom are seen as somewhat related to dwarves), and humans. So basically it is "dwarf-related races and humans." I think the idea is that he has no power over those who are not related to dwarves other than humans.

Jeff



"All of the short guys. Oh...and humans, too."

Funny .

Honestly, I thought that ability was playing into the fantasy convention of Elves being less affected by (or even "impervious to", in specific instances) greed.
sleyvas Posted - 02 Oct 2023 : 14:55:25
quote:
Originally posted by George Krashos

I had a play with some Cegilune stuff for an upcoming DMs Guild release. Hags are cool.:)

-- George Krashos



Yes, their culture is very under developed. They're kind of painted with the traditional halloween witch / wicked witch of the east paintbrush most of the time. I very much like the idea that they've had a lot of influence over goblinoid, troll, and ogre cultures (I view that in their minds, these races are "attractive" as opposed to sickly, weak humans, elves, etc....).
George Krashos Posted - 02 Oct 2023 : 06:35:25
I had a play with some Cegilune stuff for an upcoming DMs Guild release. Hags are cool.:)

-- George Krashos
AuldDragon Posted - 01 Oct 2023 : 07:13:40
Cegilune the Hag Goddess: https://bit.ly/457mi7y

Just in time for the spooky season of October is Cegilune, goddess of hags. She rules the night hags of the Gray Waste and conducts trade in larva with diverse dark powers, while also haunting the Prime Material Plane in search of magic and souls to turn into more larva. With her, I chose to incorporate some of the European legends about witches just as I incorporated some similar Eastern information into her potential sister, Ysshara.

Jeff
AuldDragon Posted - 25 Sep 2023 : 18:45:08
quote:
Originally posted by Azar

Why are Half-Elves and Elves unaffected by Abbathor's ability to arouse treasure lust in the mortal races?



It's not that elves and half-elves are specifically excluded from the power; it only affects the small races (all of whom are seen as somewhat related to dwarves), and humans. So basically it is "dwarf-related races and humans." I think the idea is that he has no power over those who are not related to dwarves other than humans.

Jeff
Azar Posted - 25 Sep 2023 : 12:37:33
Why are Half-Elves and Elves unaffected by Abbathor's ability to arouse treasure lust in the mortal races?
Baltas Posted - 22 Sep 2023 : 13:18:15
quote:
Originally posted by TBeholder
[It does not "show how big" it is any more than a stencilling a crude picture with "perspective" on a wall shows how big a building is. And at the quality level of most kitchen sinks, they would probably cause fits of claustrophobia.

Kitchen sinks are created out of laziness, and in turn breed silly mess.
This silly mess degrades the expected levels of content quality.



I mean, this is why I wrote YMMV (Your Millege May Vary).

The issues you also brought up, are not primiraily or exculisivelly connected the fantasy kitchen sink idea.

Revising Ultravision and Infravision to Low Light Vision and Darkvision, might be even seen as an attempt to reduce kitchen sink elements, by remove sci-fi (really reall-life physicics and biology inspired) elements from the game.

There are examples of very good use of fantasy kitchen sink story telling. Neil Gaiman's Sandman and it's spin-off Lucifer, are examples, as are to a degree Hellboy, Astro City or even Warhammer 40,000 when it's well written. In D&D, Planescape and Spelljammer are also examples of fantasy kitchen sink settings intentionally set-up as such. And also utilizing the previous fantasy kitchen sink elements in D&D, if expanding on it.

To return to Shami-Amourae, if were to take out the kitchen sink element, we would have to make the devil Lilith somehow the queen of succubi, prehaps even remove the the split of fiends into various species/factions. Ie meaning no more demons, devils, yuggoloths, and "lesser" groups, just all being now demons/fiends. Again, all are just various interpretations of demonology and demon-kind. Which I think would if anything, strip D&D of it's unique elements.

quote:
Originally posted by LordofBones

I've always used Lynkhab over Malcanthet, Shami or any other succubus, really, as Queen of the Succubi. I enjoyed the irony of the demon queen of desire being unable to obtain her own desires, over Ultra-succubus-just-add-hair-dye #1 and #2.



Well Lynkhab is interesting, but I think she could fully co-exist alongside a Malcanthet/Shami-Amourae type Succubi Queen.

But as I discussed with AuldDragon, Lynkhab curiusly was never named the Queen of Succubi or candidate for position in 2E (ie "Faces of Evil: The Fiends"), only an Abyssal Lord who gained form of divinity or something equivalent, by becoming an embodiment of desire.
Shami-Amourae was still the Queen of Succubi in 2E (something AuldDragon informed me of), as seen in the Road to Danger compilation and 2e update of multiple Dungeon magazine adventures, including "The Stolen Power".
It's not a simple update, as it includes new lore on Shami, including her aliance with Graz'zt, aliases (Shazra and Jezebel), and expanding on Shami's mortal past, which AuldDragon included in his write-up of her.

Lynkhab being a peer in terms of age to Shami-Amourae, is something also only stated in 3E.

Still, Lynkhab being rival to Shami-Amourae to the position of the Queen of Succubi, (though possibly now an ex-rival, due to Lynkhab's state and current mentality) would be something interesting.

Also, about Shami and aliases, I discovered Shami-Amourae has another alias - in Dungeon #136, this alias being Shamarae the Lover, as one of the 3000 Obahs (guardian spirits) of the Mur.

Other Obahs that are aliases of other planar beings, are Balim the Pretender, an alias for Baalzebul; and Wynnarth the Dervish, an alias for Gwynharwyf.
TBeholder Posted - 21 Sep 2023 : 21:32:30
quote:
Originally posted by Baltas


quote:
Originally posted by TBeholder
Kitchen sinks are the root of many evils.


Personally, I think it's both a flaw and merit, for example for the fact that it show how big/expansive the "mega-setting" of D&D is. But YMMV.

It does not "show how big" it is any more than a stencilling a crude picture with "perspective" on a wall shows how big a building is. And at the quality level of most kitchen sinks, they would probably cause fits of claustrophobia.

Kitchen sinks are created out of laziness, and in turn breed silly mess.
This silly mess degrades the expected levels of content quality.
Lowering quality standards rot everything. The editors will rubber-stamp anything, while lack of requirements for compliance with continuity and other "difficluck" lore encourages the lazy hacks to churn out half-assed content at best and plainly not even bother to make sense at worst (in this case with the complication of Pointy Haired Bosses actively degrading quality, sure, but low starting level surely made the pit deeper).
On the design side, it manifests as piles of "eh, uh, or something", like in d20: stuff that is not well defined, like "darkvision" and worse. It's inevitably bad on a large scale exactly because it has no defined borders (see Sanderson's First Law). It's great to excuse away hackery on C-grade-student level, but does not allow consistent content).
The same effect was even worse (thus more obvious) in Warhammer 40k, where it led to infamous "grimderp" (which is little more than a pretentious version of painting with feces), and as the audience was desensitized to that, occasionally it reached the level of absurdity, such infamous incident of Matt Ward's "Khornate Knights" in 5th Edition.
Since lazy copypasting is already there, if tar and feathers a decisive cure is not applied in time, such things are apt to congeal into a ball of obnoxious hurr look at this reference and roll along the rock bottom.
[ /rant]
Which is why you see people asking "uh, which Earth god|people|... with serial numbers filed off X is?" even here on Candlekeep. Eventually people stop expecting any better than this.

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