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The Hooded One
Lady Herald of Realmslore

5055 Posts

Posted - 12 Jan 2015 :  22:50:11  Show Profile  Visit The Hooded One's Homepage Send The Hooded One a Private Message
Hi again, all.
Markustay, according to Ed of the Greenwood, you have the right of it re. magic items: the Weave changed, and therefore so did many enchanted things, depending on HOW they were enchanted and what happened to magic in their immediate vicinity during the first wave of the Spellplague and then the ripples/aftershocks/echoes that followed, over the next century.
And Ed also snatched time to answer your question re. the South:

Beyond Ulgarth, heading south, there was a low, worn-down (Appalachians-style) mountain range (so: wooded, plenty of habitable high valleys, "gaps," and passes), then a jutting-eastwards arm of the sea with city-states and small kingdoms all around its coasts (a "mini-Mediterranean," if you will), fed by a long, winding, major river that emptied into its easternmost end.
To the south of that was a range of hills, followed by a gigantic swamp (jungle-ish river delta, with quicksand, back "oxbow" lakes, etc., largely trackless and insect-swarm-infested and little settled by humans).
Sailing south from that large-kingdom-sized swampland, a wayfarer traversing the coast would come to another range of hills, the land rising and getting hotter and drier, and beyond that settled lands (my regional name for which was: Cimbarra) very like the published Zakhara.
And beyond that, another mountain range and then a region of sea choked with many, many islands, large and small, so navigating the waters between them would seem almost like threading through a maze. These islands would eventually give way to a long, curving, horizontal east-west continent, and beyond that open sea studded by only a few islands (mainly the tops of extinct volcanoes), the waters getting colder and iceberg-studded, and then finally a polar ice cap.
And there you have it: a potted tour of the coast. (Large continents stretching away to the east of all of this north of that maze of islands.)


So saith Ed. Revealing uncharted Toril for the first time.
love,
THO

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MaskedOne
Acolyte

42 Posts

Posted - 13 Jan 2015 :  06:10:17  Show Profile Send MaskedOne a Private Message
Been a while since I dropped in here, so...

Pre-Spellplague:

1)Did Zalathorm have agents working on his behalf (in secret or in the open) outside Halruuan borders or was Halruua as isolationist as it liked to appear?

2) If anyone had ever been unwise enough to give Halruua cause to step outside its borders looking for trouble, just how hard would it be to stop them?

3) How good is Halruuan counter-intelligence?


Post-Spellplague:

1) This may or may not have come up in 4E materials (haven't read most 4E stuff, really not planning to go purchasing the ones I've skipped) but just how much of Halruua's people, lore and magic survived the Spellplague?

No, I'm not at all interested in isolated nations of wizards....
Really...

Edited by - MaskedOne on 13 Jan 2015 06:30:50
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The Sage
Procrastinator Most High
Moderator

Australia
31701 Posts

Posted - 13 Jan 2015 :  07:31:58  Show Profile Send The Sage a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by MaskedOne

Been a while since I dropped in here, so...

Pre-Spellplague:

1)Did Zalathorm have agents working on his behalf (in secret or in the open) outside Halruuan borders or was Halruua as isolationist as it liked to appear?
I have to check to be certain, but I think Elaine Cunningham may have touched on this subject [briefly] in a previous reply. I'm thinking back in 2012, but I really need to scour my archives to be sure.

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Eilserus
Master of Realmslore

USA
1442 Posts

Posted - 13 Jan 2015 :  16:57:38  Show Profile Send Eilserus a Private Message
Hi Ed and THO!

When it comes to dwarven mines, is there a standard tunnel width/height they usually dig or that veins of ore tend to follow? Such as a 5 foot wide and 6 foot high tunnel, 10x10 etc? They must enlarge certain tunnels to allow rail cart travel in heavily worked areas? Is there a certain format for this they follow such as a 20 foot tunnel, ingoing cart on left, outgoing cart on right, walking path center etc?

Aside from swinging a pickaxe, what sort of gadgets (if any) or must have essentials do they use to speed up or assist in their mining efforts? Would a pickaxe fashioned from umber hulk claws actually work or need to be enchanted so not to shatter? In regards to shoring up a mine tunnel, do they carve these out of the rock as they mine? Or put them in place from stone quarried elsewhere? Would dwarves even want to use wood for shoring a tunnel?

Regarding the geology of the Storm Horns, what type of rock is common? Are there rare types of rock? I get the impression that the outer parts must have lots of granite or other hard stone since mining appears really difficult? How about limestone or dolomite layers?

With humanoids such as orcs known to live in the Storm Horns and given the violent storms and lightning strikes that occur almost daily, how do they travel throughout the mountains? Do foot paths allow travel throughout to various valleys etc? And with lightning being so common, do humanoids shy away from overmuch metal armor or weapons? Would the dwarves of old have created giant pillars of iron, sheathed in stone except for the top to act as lightning rods on travel paths or would that be too high tech?

Any lore on Tempest Valley and/or The Warm Waterfall?

Sorry for the wall of text. I feel guilty even posting this block of many questions.

Thanks you two! :)

Edited by - Eilserus on 13 Jan 2015 16:57:53
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Eli the Tanner
Learned Scribe

United Kingdom
149 Posts

Posted - 14 Jan 2015 :  00:20:42  Show Profile  Visit Eli the Tanner's Homepage Send Eli the Tanner a Private Message
Greetings Ed and THO,
I have a vampiric query for you. Are there any famed or 'noble' bloodlines among vampires? If so, how far back do any of these dynasties go and what measures do they take to preserve them? I'm curious about any vampiric genealogy amid the realms in general, are there any noted faerunian scholars who might share my interest?

Hopefully a vampiric visitor finds you both well, and grant your quills the immortality they deserve.

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Markustay
Realms Explorer extraordinaire

USA
15724 Posts

Posted - 14 Jan 2015 :  12:42:16  Show Profile Send Markustay a Private Message
Thanks you for that excellent response.

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

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The Hooded One
Lady Herald of Realmslore

5055 Posts

Posted - 14 Jan 2015 :  21:32:06  Show Profile  Visit The Hooded One's Homepage Send The Hooded One a Private Message
I'll convey your thanks to Ed, Markustay.
And Eilserus, I can begin to provide a paltry first response to one of your questions: "Aside from swinging a pickaxe, what sort of gadgets (if any) or must have essentials do they use to speed up or assist in their mining efforts? Would a pickaxe fashioned from umber hulk claws actually work or need to be enchanted so not to shatter? In regards to shoring up a mine tunnel, do they carve these out of the rock as they mine? Or put them in place from stone quarried elsewhere? Would dwarves even want to use wood for shoring a tunnel?"

From Ed's notes, I can tell you:

Umber hulk claws or anything other body part from a dead creature would need to be properly preserved (pickling or magic or most likely both) to retain resiliency, or it'll dry out and shatter with continued high-stress use (and tunneling through rock IS, yes, high-stress use).
As for shoring up: one of the great skills of dwarves is "knowing" rock, so they can tell when rock is hard enough not to need any shoring/framing, and when it does (experts train younglings in the taste, feel, smell, and look of rock). Some gadgets include: thin, high-sided "trough" rubble-carts (picture a short dugout canoe fitted with many rope-handles) for passing mined rock back out of the way to a side-cavern, plentiful water in skins (brought to the workface in those same carrycarts) used to keep down dust and to cool the chisels, and many, many shaped and hard-forged chisels, used as a woodcutter employs splitting wedges on logs, hammered into rock with mallets in patterns that exploit natural cleavage-planes in the rock, so pickaxes have their blows magnified into breaking off large pieces of rock, fracturing large amounts in a short time period so the chunks can be broken up with hammer blows from all sides, the rubble scooped into carrycarts with deep-sided scoops (like some real-world fireplace ash-shovels in shape, but much sturdier).
And finally, dwarves will use wood if they have to, and if the stone is dry enough. Otherwise, it's temporary work at best, soon replaced by "arch-collars" of stone carved out of the right "really durable" sorts of rock in one place, and stored and transported to where needed. Often these collars won't "fit" along tunnels if left in one piece, and are constructed as two half-arches with a keystone/capstone (think of the old Pennsylvania railway logo) that gets hammered into place where it is needed. The capstones aren't simple blocks, they're long rectangular slabs, that when set up will run from one arch to the next, to form a "ceiling" inside the tunnel.

And there you have what I can derive from Ed's notes; the rest will have to come from him.
love,
THO
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Eilserus
Master of Realmslore

USA
1442 Posts

Posted - 14 Jan 2015 :  22:44:02  Show Profile Send Eilserus a Private Message
Much thanks Lady THO. As always, you two are the best! :)
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The Hooded One
Lady Herald of Realmslore

5055 Posts

Posted - 15 Jan 2015 :  18:00:35  Show Profile  Visit The Hooded One's Homepage Send The Hooded One a Private Message
A pleasure, dear. May we always be able to answer Realmslore queries for everyone.

And, as it happens, I can begin to answer MaskedOne, in a tiny, paltry way, drawing on Ed's home campaign player experience:

Halruaa does have spies outside its borders, and a tiny handful of "active agents" (who might engage in more than passive watching and reporting back, when they deem it necessary). The elders of Halruaa frown upon "young firebrands" doing things that might draw attention back to Halruaa, so they tend to act accordingly. Any active agents tend to be veterans and to be very low-key, not "blast dragons out of the sky bwoohahahah!" sorts.
I don't think many folks could stop Halruaa, if they really got going - - which is one of the reasons Thay (both before and during Szass Tam) and the Zhents and, yes, the Shadovar didn't race around the Realms blasting kings off thrones and murdering all powerful mages. The Halruaans, like Larloch, act as something of "inhibitors merely because we know they're there and how they tend to react, so . . ." to such behavior.
Note that I said "really got going." The thing is, the Halruaans really don't want to get embroiled in matters beyond their mountainous borders. It will take much to get them to do more than call in favours and use others to eliminate threats or annoyances for them, or - - in a pinch, when "it absolutely must be done right, and in a hurry" - - send a strike force of their own.
Ed and I talked about this, once, and he said that although Halruaa was largely "gone" from Faerūn in the Sundering, with many of its archwizards snuffed out or gone crazy or very busy trying to magically repair what they could, a last-ditch Halruaan strike force would wipe the floor with, say, Telamont and the Princes of Shade - - because they had been developing their magic far more cooperatively for centuries, and in far broader ways, than Telamont had seen the need to or had the time for (Telamont, for much of that time, was securing his own rule and ruthlessly eliminating or taming potential rivals within Thultanthar, and then dealing with his own fractious offspring).
Halruaa was literally the sleeping elephant in the room full of fragile china. You don NOT want to wake it up!
love,
THO
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Eilserus
Master of Realmslore

USA
1442 Posts

Posted - 15 Jan 2015 :  18:25:52  Show Profile Send Eilserus a Private Message
Interesting. Largely "gone", emphasis on the quotations makes me think that means gone elsewhere for now? Hmmmm. :)
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Irennan
Great Reader

Italy
3676 Posts

Posted - 15 Jan 2015 :  18:38:01  Show Profile Send Irennan a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Eilserus

Interesting. Largely "gone", emphasis on the quotations makes me think that means gone elsewhere for now? Hmmmm. :)



Yeah, I too am interested in this. Also, THO, when you said ''gone in the Sundering'', was it a typo for Spellplague?
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Rymac
Learned Scribe

USA
312 Posts

Posted - 15 Jan 2015 :  18:50:58  Show Profile  Visit Rymac's Homepage Send Rymac a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by The Hooded One

Halruaa does have spies outside its borders, and a tiny handful of "active agents" (who might engage in more than passive watching and reporting back, when they deem it necessary).



Would it be a safe assumption that these Halruaan spies would be hidden "deep-cover" agents inside other organizations/governments, rather than just an observer who operates nearby, gathering intelligence though eavesdropping magic?
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
36260 Posts

Posted - 15 Jan 2015 :  19:16:53  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message
And are these Halruaan spies/agents chosen for any particular skillset, or is it more like the Harpers, with "yeah, this guy fits our needs and gets what we want"?

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The Hooded One
Lady Herald of Realmslore

5055 Posts

Posted - 15 Jan 2015 :  20:16:32  Show Profile  Visit The Hooded One's Homepage Send The Hooded One a Private Message
Eilserus and Irennan, I did mean "Sundering." As in, there were times as Abeir and Toril passed through each other that Halruaa was "gone"/incommunicado vis-a-vis the rest of Faerūn, though when I wrote of the deaths and mental damage to Halruaan archwizards, I did indeed mean the ravages of the Spellplague.
And here's where I extrapolate, after a brief e-conflab with Ed to make sure I'm communicating his views properly...
Rymac, most of the watchers would be "deep cover" in governments or important groups (like city guilds and large, farflung costers), but a few would live as just plain folks, in strategic locations. And aside from subtle magical mental protections, many of these latter watchers wouldn't have or use much magic at all.
Wooly, the planted spies are chosen for their alertness, shrewd judgment, and strong loyalty to Halruaa. The active agents tend to be the restless "wanna DO things and travel and see the Realms and hurl my magic!" sorts in Halruaan houses, who are tried out as agents to see how disciplined they can be and how much they can benefit Halruaa. Some flame out, and some develop into good agents. Most of these active agents are by definition strong in their wizardry.
(Interestingly, a "secret agent of Halruaa" adventuring alone in the Realms was a concept Ed pitched as a novel line - - not written by him, but a series of novels all written by different first-time authors - - but that the TSR editors didn't bite on. I think it could have been great, if writers had managed to capture a fantasy feel of James Bond without copying James Bond.)
love,
THO
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
36260 Posts

Posted - 15 Jan 2015 :  20:50:55  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message
That response about Halruaa being gone really makes me ponder... I've always had issues with Halruaa's fate during the Spellplague, and your description makes me think Halruaa wasn't destroyed, it was just elsewhere. And that would neatly solve the issues of did it or did it not blow up that have so bothered me.

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Candlekeep - The Library of Forgotten Realms Lore
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Irennan
Great Reader

Italy
3676 Posts

Posted - 15 Jan 2015 :  21:42:15  Show Profile Send Irennan a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by The Hooded One

Eilserus and Irennan, I did mean "Sundering." As in, there were times as Abeir and Toril passed through each other that Halruaa was "gone"/incommunicado vis-a-vis the rest of Faerūn,



Wait, does Halruaa sort of ''blink'' between Toril and Abeir?
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Malcolm
Learned Scribe

242 Posts

Posted - 15 Jan 2015 :  22:03:56  Show Profile  Visit Malcolm's Homepage Send Malcolm a Private Message
Well, as Ed explained it to me at a recent convention, Halruaan magical shields went up, making teleportation and scrying impossible and clouding most divination magic into chaotic uselessness . . . and when the Spellplague hit, many Halruaans died went magic briefly "went wild" and structures collapsed, in-flight effects failed and gravity took over, active magics turned chaotic, and so on. At the same time, many wizards went insane or got brain-burned or were killed when caught in their own spells going chaotic . . . and a lot of the surviving Halruaans assumed the realm was under attack and cast or activated all of their appropriate "rainy day" defenses - - so MORE shields went up, many of them twisted or going wild as time passed . . . so Halruaa was effectively cut off from the rest of Faerūn. And caught in mid-dimensional segueing between Abeir and Toril (and not the entire country as a neat whole unit, but bits and pieces of it in a very localized fashion). Which in turn meant more wild magic and the leakage of other magics from elsewhere through it, and MORE defensive spellcasting, and . . . an increasing "no go zone" from the POV of those nearby in Toril.So it doesn't so much "blink" as it disappears into/behind impenetrable mists of tangled magic (old comics readers, think of all of those weird panels drawn in elder Doctor Strange issues), for a time.
To emerge with many structures devastated (think of many World War II cities after heavy bombing), the populace scattered, weary, and wary . . . and even more determined to be isolationalist.
Have I got it right, THO? Ed?

Edited by - Malcolm on 15 Jan 2015 22:05:08
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The Hooded One
Lady Herald of Realmslore

5055 Posts

Posted - 15 Jan 2015 :  22:06:35  Show Profile  Visit The Hooded One's Homepage Send The Hooded One a Private Message
Beautifully put, dear. Or more succinctly: Utter chaos and you couldn't see in or out. Not that it was safe to go looking, when all the raging magic was at its height.
love,
THO
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Irennan
Great Reader

Italy
3676 Posts

Posted - 15 Jan 2015 :  22:15:02  Show Profile Send Irennan a Private Message
Oh, so that means that Halruaa actually survived the Spellplague. Well, that's much needed good news. Has all the crazy magic stuff altered Halruaan society, leading people to rely on something else next to magic (especially in the time where the remaining wizards would try to learn to use the new Weave-less magic)? And may we get some hint (probably NDA) on how Halruaa looks now (after -I guess- its people rebuilt what was destroyed), and what has changed with the return of the Weave?

Thanks for your time.

Edited by - Irennan on 15 Jan 2015 22:17:40
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Eltheron
Senior Scribe

740 Posts

Posted - 15 Jan 2015 :  22:21:28  Show Profile Send Eltheron a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Malcolm

Well, as Ed explained it to me at a recent convention, Halruaan magical shields went up, making teleportation and scrying impossible and clouding most divination magic into chaotic uselessness . . . and when the Spellplague hit, many Halruaans died went magic briefly "went wild" and structures collapsed, in-flight effects failed and gravity took over, active magics turned chaotic, and so on. At the same time, many wizards went insane or got brain-burned or were killed when caught in their own spells going chaotic . . . and a lot of the surviving Halruaans assumed the realm was under attack and cast or activated all of their appropriate "rainy day" defenses - - so MORE shields went up, many of them twisted or going wild as time passed . . . so Halruaa was effectively cut off from the rest of Faerūn. And caught in mid-dimensional segueing between Abeir and Toril (and not the entire country as a neat whole unit, but bits and pieces of it in a very localized fashion). Which in turn meant more wild magic and the leakage of other magics from elsewhere through it, and MORE defensive spellcasting, and . . . an increasing "no go zone" from the POV of those nearby in Toril.So it doesn't so much "blink" as it disappears into/behind impenetrable mists of tangled magic (old comics readers, think of all of those weird panels drawn in elder Doctor Strange issues), for a time.
To emerge with many structures devastated (think of many World War II cities after heavy bombing), the populace scattered, weary, and wary . . . and even more determined to be isolationalist.
Have I got it right, THO? Ed?


Now this, THIS here, is the kind of thing I'd like to see in a 5E campaign guide. It's a brilliant fix for something that honestly never should have happened. It's making a strawberry-lemonade slush out of a gigantic sad lemon.

If Ed's secret writing is repairing the Realms in this fashion, and all of those repairs are as organic and full of adventure/story hooks as this, then I would definitely buy that campaign guide.

It's still a whole lot of mess to clean up, though. So if that's what you're working on Ed, I think many of us would be willing to wait for something truly polished in 2017 or even 2018.


"The very best possible post-fourteenth-century Realms lets down those who love the specific, detailed social, political and magical situation, with its thousands of characters, developed over forty years, and want to learn more about it; and those who'd be open to a new one with equal depth, which there just isn't time to re-produce; and those repelled, some past the point of no return, by the bad-taste-and-plausibility gap of things done to the world when its guardianship was less careful."
--Faraer
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The Hooded One
Lady Herald of Realmslore

5055 Posts

Posted - 15 Jan 2015 :  22:21:28  Show Profile  Visit The Hooded One's Homepage Send The Hooded One a Private Message
I'll check with Ed, but I'm fairly sure that I'm recalling that when one of his other longtime players asked about Halruaa in my presence, Ed said it was currently NDA. Apparently there are several areas of the Realms WotC just isn't going to talk about for now (meaning there are plans, or decisions to be made, or possible future projects/outside licenses not nailed down yet). In other words, all of the usual legitimate business reasons for NDAs.
About which we can't complain; it's like bitching about rain. It will, after all, always be with us.
love,
THO
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MaskedOne
Acolyte

42 Posts

Posted - 15 Jan 2015 :  22:21:44  Show Profile Send MaskedOne a Private Message
When you say that a last ditch strike force could wipe the floor with the Princes of Shade, are we talking Halruua pre-1385 or Halruua right now? If they can muster that type of firepower now then I may be at a loss for words.

Also I would love to see stories featuring Halruuan secret agents in the wider realms.

Edited by - MaskedOne on 15 Jan 2015 22:23:49
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Irennan
Great Reader

Italy
3676 Posts

Posted - 15 Jan 2015 :  23:11:54  Show Profile Send Irennan a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by The Hooded One

About which we can't complain; it's like bitching about rain. It will, after all, always be with us.
love,
THO



But I like the rain...
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The Hooded One
Lady Herald of Realmslore

5055 Posts

Posted - 16 Jan 2015 :  00:30:51  Show Profile  Visit The Hooded One's Homepage Send The Hooded One a Private Message
MaskedOne, I was speaking of Halruaa pre-1385 (and so, of course, really the period between 1372 DR, when Thultanthar reappeared in the Realms, and when the Spellplague hit). After the onset of the Spellplague, Halruaa was much diminished, but we don't know enough details to judge who would defeat whom.
love,
THO
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MaskedOne
Acolyte

42 Posts

Posted - 16 Jan 2015 :  00:44:39  Show Profile Send MaskedOne a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by The Hooded One

MaskedOne, I was speaking of Halruaa pre-1385 (and so, of course, really the period between 1372 DR, when Thultanthar reappeared in the Realms, and when the Spellplague hit). After the onset of the Spellplague, Halruaa was much diminished, but we don't know enough details to judge who would defeat whom.
love,
THO



That works, I'd be surprised (entertained but surprised) if after the Spellplague and the Sundering smashing into them, Halruua could still muster that type of firepower. Does Halruua have formal diplomatic relations with any of the larger elven nations or are they sufficiently distant from each other that they don't really talk to each other?

Also before I forget (and I will, repeatedly), thanks for the information!

Edited by - MaskedOne on 16 Jan 2015 00:45:48
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The Hooded One
Lady Herald of Realmslore

5055 Posts

Posted - 16 Jan 2015 :  02:37:08  Show Profile  Visit The Hooded One's Homepage Send The Hooded One a Private Message
MaskedOne, I suspect you're right, and Halruaa would end up on the losing end of a battle with the Princes. (Assuming Telamont could ever get them to work together and not magically backstab each other at every opportunity.)
Though as I said, we literally don't know enough.
Post-HERALD, of course, it's a different kettle of fish. Ed has hinted that some Princes survived, not just the three characters we saw at the end of THE HERALD, but I strongly suspect their arrogant world-view has been rocked, and they may be far more wary and low profile for a while.
As for formal diplomatic relations between Halruaa and elven realms: there's NOTHING in my notes, or that I can recall Ed saying. Since Elaine's trilogy set in Halruaa, he's said very little about the land (I suspect wanting to leave her maximum freedom if she wanted to write anything more set there). So, off your question goes...but I suspect it's going to slam right into that NDA. Sigh. But, we'll see...

Irennan, I'm not writing, designing, or editing in the Realms, but if I had any say in the matter at all, it would be that the widespread magical chaos in Halruaa will have changed attitudes there, too.

love to all,
THO
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hashimashadoo
Master of Realmslore

United Kingdom
1131 Posts

Posted - 16 Jan 2015 :  08:23:48  Show Profile  Visit hashimashadoo's Homepage Send hashimashadoo a Private Message
Okay, here's one about recent continuity that I and a few others have been scratching our heads over.

Since third edition, the goddess Tiamat has not been living in Avernus like she has in all the other campaign settings. Powers and Pantheons said that she would officially join the Faerūnian Pantheon in the middle of 1371 DR. Her divine realm since joining has been listed alternately as Heliopolis (in Faiths and Pantheons), Dragon Eyrie (in the Player's Guide to Faerūn) and Banehold, serving Bane (in the Forgotten Realms Campaign Guide), despite Faiths and Pantheons saying that Bane was one of her enemies.

Tiamat made a cameo in Erin Evans' Fire in the Blood and is described as "Guardian to the Gate of the Second Layer. Latest Vassal of Asmodeus." and it's said that she has her own kingdom in Avernus.

I recently came across this post made by Ms Evans.
quote:
Originally posted by ErinMEvans

Tiamat came up in story summit discussions, which was where Ed Greenwood mentioned that they'd kicked around the idea back in the day that whatever Tiamat consumed was completely destroyed. Which just kind of lit up my whole brain--what a fantastic reason to share territory with this dragon goddess!

I'll admit, at the time, I think we were all under the impression that she was placed in Avernus by 4E. I know I was. She's in Avernus in pretty much every other campaign setting, after all, and a lot of the 4E changes did have a streamlining effect. But she was in Banehold for some reason. So this is sort of a smoothing scene to account for that transition. Because Tiamat doesn't deserve to skulk around in Banehold like some kind of beaten pet! She's a Queen! She deserves her own little realm in the Nine Hells!



So why does she need rescuing from Avernus in the Tyranny of Dragons storyline? I briefly chatted to Wolfgang Baur about this but all he said was that "It was the premise provided by Wizards, and Kobold Press really isn’t in a position to dictate canon to the Wizards team."

When life turns it's back on you...sneak attack for extra damage.

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https://forgottenrealms.fandom.com/

Edited by - hashimashadoo on 16 Jan 2015 08:24:34
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Markustay
Realms Explorer extraordinaire

USA
15724 Posts

Posted - 16 Jan 2015 :  14:48:40  Show Profile Send Markustay a Private Message
The way I reason-out Halruaa in 4e is that it was a lot like Japan when the Tsunami hit. The government actually ordered people to NOT post how devastated they were (videos, etc). Some stuff eventually leaked out, but they didn't want anyone else to really know how truly cataclysmic it was. They even denied international aid offered to them (they didn't want anyone to see how bad it was!)

Now, we can postulate lots of reasons for that (pride, fear, etc), and we could see much the same happening to Halruaa, applying what Malcolm said (and THO acknowledged) about the place. People 'lost contact' with Halruaa, and given what they know happened to other 'magically heavy' regions, they suspected the worst. Halruaa went along with that. They WERE devastated and incredibly reduced in power... and they wouldn't have wanted anyone 'jumping all over that'. Ed has stated in the past the Halruaa does use agents outside of Halruaa to keep tabs on other countries - they may have even used those to help spread the misinformation about Halruaa ("the whole thing just blew up!!!")

So the 4e lore regarding Halruaa is correct, in that it is the information that the folks of the Heartlands believes to be true. Because of the on-going 'magical chaos' everywhere, only a madwits would dare to try and see what was left there (and the few that may have tried this would have simply disappeared, thus adding to the rumors). As far as anyone in Faerūn was concerned, Halruaa was 'just gone'. The survivors would not dare reveal themselves until they felt they had sufficient power to protect themselves (from whatever - they were always a paranoid bunch).

They could even link this to a return/lore of Lantan and Nimbral. Surviving Halruaans may have gone to Nimbral, and both of those groups could be working with the Lantanese to help obscure whats left of them (also still 'in hiding' until they rebuild). Lots of great ways they can spin things in 5e - here's hoping Ed truly does have a hand in steering things. Why, we could even see some of Ed's 'albino drow' show up (that nasty spellplague got all over everything!)

Hmmmm... now I need a question...

Ed, how do you feel about the idea of some of the core (GH) elements winding up in The Forgotten Realms now? Is having these 'classic adventures' re-set in FR a good thing, in your opinion?


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


Edited by - Markustay on 16 Jan 2015 14:51:48
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The Hooded One
Lady Herald of Realmslore

5055 Posts

Posted - 16 Jan 2015 :  15:49:13  Show Profile  Visit The Hooded One's Homepage Send The Hooded One a Private Message
VERY nicely put, Markustay. (Are you sure you're not a professional game designer? )
I shot this off to Ed, who loves it.
He also sent back this:

As a guy who envisaged the Realms from the first as being one of many "worlds" gate-linked to Earth (in the parlance of early D&D, every fictional setting a DM loved and wanted to adventure in was an "alternate Prime Material Plane," and they all co-existed side-by-side, linked by gates, plus a few individuals and monsters had the innate ability (a la the royal family of Amber, in Roger Zelazny's Amber series) to travel the planes by "adding" and "subtracting" elements to move towards a place they wanted to reach, AND - - gee, this is getting long-winded; bear with me - - a guy who as a freelancer worked on many TSR products concerned with how the worlds were linked (e.g. I did the first out-of-house Spelljammer product, Lost Ships, and worked behind the scenes on Ravenloft's connections to other "TSR worlds"), I've always thought of ALL of the D&D settings asco-existing in the same multiverse.
The Wizards Three series was proposed to me by the Dragon editors as a way of keeping up interest in Greyhawk and Dragonlance by piggybacking them on the setting then getting the big support (the Realms), but I loved the idea and ran with it - - because I want the opportunity to play in all of them with the same characters in the same campaign. So I want Greyhawk and the Realms to co-exist, and I'm fine with the idea that deities exist, sometimes in different guises and with different powers and portfolios, in multiple worlds. And if all the worlds are linked, who's to say that something (especially something involving powerful magic [an artifact?], or a deity or magically-powerful being like a dragon) doesn't have "echoes" across the worlds? (Meaning that events, foes, and versions of the same things co-exist, as we see in Moorcock's Eternal Champion series.) And on a purely personal level, I had the Realms before there was a D&D game, but when D&D got going, Greyhawk was THE world of D&D, and Greyhawk meant D&D to me. All of which means I loved "going to Greyhawk."
So for all of these reasons - - and one that should trump them all, for all of us: in a time when resources for official published D&D are limited, anything that brings the full flavour and richness of the game to newcomers should be supported and applauded - - I welcome core Greyhawk elements into the Realms, and being in the Realms. I designed the Realms to encompass all things - - not just contain and carry them, but host them and enhance them and make them more accessible and interconnected, so this is the Realms doing what the Realms does.
All of which boils down to: I feel good about it. ;}

So saith Ed. If he takes this long to answer a one-liner, imagine the foreplay...ahem.
love,
THO
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The Hooded One
Lady Herald of Realmslore

5055 Posts

Posted - 16 Jan 2015 :  15:54:51  Show Profile  Visit The Hooded One's Homepage Send The Hooded One a Private Message
hashimashadoo, off your query goes to Ed. Whom I suspect will roll his eyes and mutter, "Because someone wasn't thinking when they wrote or edited this or that product, THAT'S why" to himself, but . . .
We ARE in the business of trying to weave a consistent grand lore tapestry here, so Ed will come up with something, if he can.
It may not be right away, though, because as Erin hath revealed, the Sundering authors (and in Ed's case, also as a consultant) were involved in Tyranny of Dragons, so Ed's NDAs might well prevent him from saying much at all until the Organized Play part of Tyranny is over (and I believe it's "fading out" through this coming summer).
However, we'll see. Ed can be a wily old lorespinner...
love,
THO
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