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brooksthegreat
Acolyte

5 Posts

Posted - 23 Feb 2009 :  02:22:28  Show Profile  Visit brooksthegreat's Homepage Send brooksthegreat a Private Message  Reply with Quote  Delete Topic
I'm looking for any and all lore that can be found on the Old Order monks..as while the tidbits I've found sound interesting, I can't for the life of me find any real information on them

Thanks!

"They must find it difficult...
Those who have taken authority as the truth, rather than truth as the authority"
-Gerald Massey

scererar
Master of Realmslore

USA
1618 Posts

Posted - 23 Feb 2009 :  03:27:26  Show Profile Send scererar a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by brooksthegreat

I'm looking for any and all lore that can be found on the Old Order monks..as while the tidbits I've found sound interesting, I can't for the life of me find any real information on them

Thanks!




Went through all of my 2E PDF's and did not find anything. first reference found was 3E FRCS, page 25
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The Sage
Procrastinator Most High

Australia
31701 Posts

Posted - 23 Feb 2009 :  04:42:06  Show Profile Send The Sage a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Unless I've overlooked a new reference, there is almost nothing in print about the Old Order, other than the FRCS and the F&P WE.

Though, Eric Boyd did add this to a previous discussions about the Old Order:-

"The reason I recommended it for the Twilight Monastery is threefold:

1) The Old Order is pretty much a blank slate.
2) If anything, the Old Order is pretty much stereotypical "monk".
3) The FRCS mentions shadowdancers belonging to the order, which seems a little odd and therefore might give us a hint as to the order's focus. I thought the mention of shadowdancers seems like it might align with Xan Yae (Greyhawk God) and his emphasis on twilight.

In other words, I didn't have much to work with, so I took what little I had and made a call.

--Eric"

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Rinonalyrna Fathomlin
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7106 Posts

Posted - 24 Feb 2009 :  00:44:09  Show Profile  Visit Rinonalyrna Fathomlin's Homepage Send Rinonalyrna Fathomlin a Private Message  Reply with Quote
What's there (or should I say, not there) about the Old Order gives me the impression that it was meant to be indistinct--a "generic monk order."

"Instead of asking why we sleep, it might make sense to ask why we wake. Perchance we live to dream. From that perspective, the sea of troubles we navigate in the workaday world might be the price we pay for admission to another night in the world of dreams."
--Richard Greene (letter to Time)
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Charraj
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USA
3 Posts

Posted - 01 Jan 2018 :  09:36:53  Show Profile Send Charraj a Private Message  Reply with Quote
"Monks of the Old Order do not worship any deity, but are devoted to the philosophy espoused by a deity who is either now dead or has never existed on the Material Plane of Toril."
-Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting, page 25

Would this mean that all monks of the Old Order are doomed to the Wall of the Faithless after they die?
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The Masked Mage
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Posted - 01 Jan 2018 :  10:43:37  Show Profile Send The Masked Mage a Private Message  Reply with Quote
No, faithless are those who don't believe in any gods. Ed has said these are extremely rare in the past, as damn near everyone pays lip-service to a god. They would be up for grabs to those gods who's portfolio overlaps with whatever they are devoted to.

I'd say Rinon is right - they are meant to be generic monks - like the old classes where you could be a generic "Cleric" without having a specific god.
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sleyvas
Skilled Spell Strategist

USA
11742 Posts

Posted - 01 Jan 2018 :  13:16:24  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Since the 3e FRCS was written up prior to the psionics stuff, it could be interesting to have had the monks of the old order devoted to the "dead deity" Auppenser. Of course, this would require a rewrite of their rules... for instance, it says that they can freely switch between rogue, sorcerer, and shadowdancer (which shadowdancer being a prestige class, not sure why it was specified), so I'd say change that to rogue, wilder, and soulknife and open up the ruleset for the fists of Zuoken (though change the name and any flavor) and the elocater.

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas
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Charraj
Acolyte

USA
3 Posts

Posted - 01 Jan 2018 :  14:58:43  Show Profile Send Charraj a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by The Masked Mage

No, faithless are those who don't believe in any gods. Ed has said these are extremely rare in the past, as damn near everyone pays lip-service to a god.


Thank you for the reply. Could you point me at where Ed said that? Is it in a "So Saith Ed" entry?
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
36784 Posts

Posted - 01 Jan 2018 :  15:26:25  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Charraj

quote:
Originally posted by The Masked Mage

No, faithless are those who don't believe in any gods. Ed has said these are extremely rare in the past, as damn near everyone pays lip-service to a god.


Thank you for the reply. Could you point me at where Ed said that? Is it in a "So Saith Ed" entry?



Here's a quote from around March 30th, 2008 (going by the date on the text file where I saved it):

quote:
Almost all intelligent, civilized creatures across the Realms actively venerate a variety of deities. Only priests, paladins, would-be priests, and a few lay worshippers cleave to only one deity; the great majority of folk in the Realms, during their day, pray to and make offerings to a dozen or more deities.
For example, if your painter was starting a new project, he might pray to Lathander as the sun came up, then pray to Tymora for good fortune during the working day before tackling any important task (like blending pigments to match a hue exactly). If he had to devise anything (like a hoist to lift a bucket of paint into a high corner, or scaffolding to keep himself or another painter up in that corner, too), he might stop and pray to Gond. When the working day was done and he was about to purchase food on the way home for the next day’s meals (or his own evening meal if he lived alone and wasn’t going home to someone else who had an evening meal ready for him), he’d pray to Chauntea that “good” vegetables, cheeses, and breads be available to him. And so on.
It’s important NOT to think of the Realms in terms of real-world monotheism. Everyone in the Realms “believes in” ALL the gods.

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Charraj
Acolyte

USA
3 Posts

Posted - 01 Jan 2018 :  16:46:48  Show Profile Send Charraj a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Thank you for the reply. I'm thinking there is a distinction between 1) mere belief, 2) paying homage to and venerating the gods, and 3) outright worship. In support of this distinction, Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting, page 290, says, "...most intelligent people worship more than one god, or at least pay homage to different gods when the circumstances are appropriate."

So even if monks of the Old Order do not worship any deity, they would at least believe in them and acknowledge their existence (mere belief). However, I do not think this is enough to avoid the Wall because, as your reply indicated, "Everyone in the Realms 'believes in' ALL the gods." So the Faithless still "believe in" the gods. It seems to me that mere belief is just a step away from lip service (FRCS, page 259).

But perhaps respecting the gods and paying homage to them is enough to make you not-Faithless. Even if a monk of the Old Order does not pray to any deity, if he still lives his life in accordance with the values of a certain deity, it seems to me he might "feel a special attachment to one particular deity." (FRCS, page 290). Ie: a monk of the Old Order can have a patron deity without worshipping that deity. "A character's choice of a patron deity does not create any special obligation for that character... A character's choice of a patron reflects the character's ambitions and self-image (most people want to be as much like their patron deity as possible for a mortal), and reflects the character's values." (FRCS, page 290).

Even without a patron deity, a monk of the Old Order could still avoid the Wall of the Faithless after death. "Even if a player has not chosen a patron deity for his character before the character meets her death, the player can choose one at the time of the character's death... Even if the character has never actively shown interest in any particular god, the way the character has been played usually will suggest a god." (FRCS, page 290).

So I guess a better question is: If a monk of the Old Order goes with a deity after death, do you think he could do so without violating the Old Order ethos of not worshipping a deity?

Edited by - Charraj on 01 Jan 2018 16:54:26
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The Masked Mage
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USA
2420 Posts

Posted - 01 Jan 2018 :  23:05:22  Show Profile Send The Masked Mage a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Ed has actually confirmed that they are not Faithless though - maybe from that same reply, maybe elsewhere. Sorry, unlike Wolly I never made a file like that and have NO intent on re-reading the 10000 or so pages of Ed's scrolls to find this :P.

Thanks for the assist Wolly.
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
36784 Posts

Posted - 01 Jan 2018 :  23:24:13  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Also from Ed's pen:

quote:
The Wall of the Faithless and the False are for those who repudiate some or all of the gods, or seek to defy “the system” (usually because they have become insane) by denying that the gods and faith have any usefulness or validity at all - - or who assert that EVERYTHING mortals know about the gods is utterly wrong because the gods deceive mortals habitually, all the time, about all matters. It is more of a threat to living mortals than a popular, heavily-populated destination, and in the past the ranks of the tortured entities there have been raided by deities and mighty-in-magic individuals (such as certain archwizards, dragons, and others) for “raw materials” (sentiences) to empower new creature creations. Which is a topic I shouldn’t elaborate more on, just now.

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Edited by - Wooly Rupert on 01 Jan 2018 23:25:01
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The Masked Mage
Great Reader

USA
2420 Posts

Posted - 02 Jan 2018 :  00:27:24  Show Profile Send The Masked Mage a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Yeah - that's it - Wolly, you're like a fuzzy, blue, space-faring, index. :)
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
36784 Posts

Posted - 02 Jan 2018 :  01:05:45  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by The Masked Mage

Yeah - that's it - Wolly, you're like a fuzzy, blue, space-faring, index. :)



Heh. I just have a lot of text files with various bits of lore that I've saved.

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TBeholder
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2401 Posts

Posted - 02 Jan 2018 :  05:10:19  Show Profile Send TBeholder a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by sleyvas

Since the 3e FRCS was written up prior to the psionics stuff

Haha... what?
quote:
Originally posted by Charraj

So even if monks of the Old Order do not worship any deity, they would at least believe in them and acknowledge their existence (mere belief).

There's also cult of Adama in Durpar, which is sort of pantheism.

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

USA
2420 Posts

Posted - 02 Jan 2018 :  05:30:40  Show Profile Send The Masked Mage a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Not to be confused with the Cult of Admiral Adama beset on all sides by the mistakes of their past.
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The Masked Mage
Great Reader

USA
2420 Posts

Posted - 02 Jan 2018 :  09:36:49  Show Profile Send The Masked Mage a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Shandaular: There may have been two or more Shandaulars, wonderful cities of trade and magic. One was said to be in the Shar in the days of Netheril, the other in Narfell, 500 years later. Each is described as being a trading community of wondrous power and fantastic wizardry that attracted the best talents of the region and rewarded them with ancient and strange coins. In each case, the city's destruction was also recorded, but not the agent of that destruction.

Campaign setting notes about Shandaular.
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sleyvas
Skilled Spell Strategist

USA
11742 Posts

Posted - 02 Jan 2018 :  13:59:59  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by TBeholder

quote:
Originally posted by sleyvas

Since the 3e FRCS was written up prior to the psionics stuff

Haha... what?




The 3e FRCS was written up prior to the 3.0 or 3.5 psionics rules, so the "rules" for the old order monks couldn't really be tied to any psionics mechanics. So, if I were to have an "old order" of monks still worshipping a "possibly dead deity".... I'd make Ki energy something like psionics and have them worshipping an ideal of Auppenser. That's all I was saying.

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas
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BadCatMan
Senior Scribe

Australia
401 Posts

Posted - 03 Jan 2018 :  05:29:46  Show Profile Send BadCatMan a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I got interested and wrote up what is known about them that I could find:
http://forgottenrealms.wikia.com/wiki/Old_Order

It really is a generic, blank-slate monastic order for the Monk class in early 3rd edition, there for PCs to fill in with whatever they want. Their multiclassing options show it: Rogue and Shadowdancer are there to make a ninja at the outset of 3rd edition, and Sorcerer is a stand-in for a monk with ki powers and hurling ki blasts.

As for their deity, I rather like Murdane: a little-known deceased deity of pragmatism and reason very much suits their approach, being more interested in philosophical debates than worship. And she's potentially from the Jhaamdathan pantheon.

I also like the idea of it as a misunderstood western branch Padhran religion, another faith where the deity's message is more than important than the deity and which fits the Old Order's bill.

BadCatMan, B.Sc. (Hons), M.Sc.
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Head DM of the Realms of Adventure play-by-post community
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Balmar Foghaven
Learned Scribe

Canada
124 Posts

Posted - 03 Jan 2018 :  06:16:00  Show Profile Send Balmar Foghaven a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

Also from Ed's pen:

quote:
The Wall of the Faithless and the False are for those who repudiate some or all of the gods, or seek to defy “the system” (usually because they have become insane) by denying that the gods and faith have any usefulness or validity at all - - or who assert that EVERYTHING mortals know about the gods is utterly wrong because the gods deceive mortals habitually, all the time, about all matters. It is more of a threat to living mortals than a popular, heavily-populated destination, and in the past the ranks of the tortured entities there have been raided by deities and mighty-in-magic individuals (such as certain archwizards, dragons, and others) for “raw materials” (sentiences) to empower new creature creations. Which is a topic I shouldn’t elaborate more on, just now.




Thanks for the clarification. I too was confused about the topic of the wall. It couldn't be that the poor farmers of the land were sentenced as faithless simply because their thankfulness to Chauntea fell short of utter devotion.

"Despair not, for in the end all things shall work out for the best - in at least one timeline."
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Balmar Foghaven
Learned Scribe

Canada
124 Posts

Posted - 03 Jan 2018 :  06:22:29  Show Profile Send Balmar Foghaven a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by BadCatMan

As for their deity, I rather like Murdane: a little-known deceased deity of pragmatism and reason very much suits their approach, being more interested in philosophical debates than worship. And she's potentially from the Jhaamdathan pantheon.



Yes, I agree that both Murdane and Auppenser could be good candidates for the Old Order to have based their paradigms upon. Murdane sounds very much like a deity who would have had monastic orders follow her, and Auppenser's bio flat-out states he was worshiped by monks.

"Despair not, for in the end all things shall work out for the best - in at least one timeline."
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Markustay
Realms Explorer extraordinaire

USA
15724 Posts

Posted - 03 Jan 2018 :  10:19:20  Show Profile Send Markustay a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I've been watching D.Gray Man lately (an anime), and they have something called 'The Black Order', that would be a decent fit. They're exorcists, so like demon/witch hunters. Each exorcists develops their own, unique ability, harnessing the power of 'innocence' (some sort of divine energy) and shaping it into a weapon based upon their personality (or past). But everyone refers to them as 'monks', and they have very cool (Steampunkish) uniforms. They remind me a little of the State Alchemists uniforms in FMA.

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

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sleyvas
Skilled Spell Strategist

USA
11742 Posts

Posted - 03 Jan 2018 :  13:28:54  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by BadCatMan

I got interested and wrote up what is known about them that I could find:
http://forgottenrealms.wikia.com/wiki/Old_Order

It really is a generic, blank-slate monastic order for the Monk class in early 3rd edition, there for PCs to fill in with whatever they want. Their multiclassing options show it: Rogue and Shadowdancer are there to make a ninja at the outset of 3rd edition, and Sorcerer is a stand-in for a monk with ki powers and hurling ki blasts.

As for their deity, I rather like Murdane: a little-known deceased deity of pragmatism and reason very much suits their approach, being more interested in philosophical debates than worship. And she's potentially from the Jhaamdathan pantheon.

I also like the idea of it as a misunderstood western branch Padhran religion, another faith where the deity's message is more than important than the deity and which fits the Old Order's bill.



I like the idea of Murdane more than my own of Auppenser. Good choice BadCatMan. I'd probably change sorcerer though for wilder, though that just a thematic thing.

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas
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Razz
Senior Scribe

USA
749 Posts

Posted - 12 Feb 2023 :  22:12:45  Show Profile Send Razz a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Resurrecting this since it's on topic and best not to create a new thread anyway.

So I think what's confusing about this is how extremely vague this order is. The one thing that could really help, and it states it multiple times, is that the order carries on the "teachings" and "philosophies" of this supposed dead deity.

The issue is, it never describes exactly WHAT those teachings are.

Like what do they spend their lives trying to attain? If you walk to an Old Order monk and ask what it vows/edicts/wisdom they're trying to follow, what would they say?

If this order was meant to be a "blank slate" for a DM in the Realms, I wish they were more blunt about it.
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
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Posted - 13 Feb 2023 :  01:10:29  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I wonder if they serve a fallen power of shadow or twilight -- or even dusk -- that's since been subsumed by another power, and they hope to bring back their fallen deity.

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Ayrik
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7981 Posts

Posted - 13 Feb 2023 :  03:25:05  Show Profile Send Ayrik a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I always thought the Old Order was a reference to AD&D 1E monks. The original monk class, more shaolin and more versatile than any of the subsequent iterations.

The 1E-to-2E class conversion rules/guidelines in FRA actually stated: "Monks should be converted into specialty priests, changing their skills to fit the new requirements of their faith ... although DMs and players can instead retain the monk class as originally written and assume these monks still serve an old order."

[/Ayrik]

Edited by - Ayrik on 13 Feb 2023 03:28:49
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
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USA
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Posted - 13 Feb 2023 :  04:49:46  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Ayrik

I always thought the Old Order was a reference to AD&D 1E monks. The original monk class, more shaolin and more versatile than any of the subsequent iterations.

The 1E-to-2E class conversion rules/guidelines in FRA actually stated: "Monks should be converted into specialty priests, changing their skills to fit the new requirements of their faith ... although DMs and players can instead retain the monk class as originally written and assume these monks still serve an old order."



That makes sense... I'm just looking at it from a lore standpoint and wondering what we can do with such limited info to make it into something useful.

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Ayrik
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7981 Posts

Posted - 13 Feb 2023 :  15:40:27  Show Profile Send Ayrik a Private Message  Reply with Quote
There are lost and forgotten classes like the original elven highmages, the original elven bladesingers, Netherese arcanists, etc.

They are said to have knowledge and abilities unlike anything normal characters can attain. They've created powerful artifacts and magical items, they've changed history, etc.

So from a lore perspective it seems fine (to me) for Old Orders of monks who follow the Old Ways, who possess secret talents, who practice forgotten skills, etc.

Monks as a rule are somewhat reclusive. They like to isolate themselves from the distractions of the world.

I recall some monks with 1E titles - Grand Master of Flowers, etc - in various post-1E novels.

[/Ayrik]
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Outlaw Pope
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43 Posts

Posted - 13 Feb 2023 :  16:19:57  Show Profile Send Outlaw Pope a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I actually always thought that was a sort of injoke based on that too. Been looking into a lot of mechanical history in DnD and found the monk/bard/psion removal or recasting really interesting between editions.
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
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Posted - 13 Feb 2023 :  19:05:20  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Outlaw Pope

I actually always thought that was a sort of injoke based on that too. Been looking into a lot of mechanical history in DnD and found the monk/bard/psion removal or recasting really interesting between editions.



I feel like the monk has never really been a good fit.

And though I love psionics, with the exception of Dark Sun, they've never really been integrated into D&D that well.

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Ayrik
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Posted - 14 Feb 2023 :  19:17:15  Show Profile Send Ayrik a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Psionics have been included, removed, added again, removed again, adjusted to be magic, adjusted to be not-magic, etc over and over again. The presence of psionics is foundational in some settings, the absence of psionis is foundational to others. The Realms just gets whatever "defaults" the latest products are selling.

Even more often than monk classes have been included, removed, etc over and over again.

It seems fitting that monks should have psionics in this context. They are intertwined.

[/Ayrik]
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