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Italian Archmage Karsus
Acolyte

14 Posts

Posted - 10 Aug 2022 :  01:07:41  Show Profile Send Italian Archmage Karsus a Private Message  Reply with Quote  Delete Topic
I was looking through some stuff today, and noticed that shades were presented in the Monstrous Manual Annual 1998, where they were brought up as "GREYHAWK" monsters, though their entry made only Realms references. As no source was provided, I'd to guess, and found most of the text matched Powers & Pantheons' last page.

However, the Ecology of the Shade article was from '87, and it referenced Monster Manual II; that one is from '83; I found the Shades there, in all their 1st edition whatever passes for glory. Monster Manual II was also the first MM for the Gorgimera (Lost Caverns of Tsojconth [SIC]) and the Aurumvorax (Expedition to the Barrier Peaks); I suspect MMII was made of cutting room floor stuff from Monster Manual I, as well as stuff that got reprinted from other products since.

If anyone is that vintage, would you happen to know of any Greyhawk products prior to '83 that have shades on them? I suspect Greyhawk was listed as their source in the annual because the first source must've been a Greyhawk module, but I'm not familiar with any Greyhawk anything. Woulda posted this on FR stuff, but it's a Greyhawk question, I think Greyhawk used to be Core. Seems like a better fit here, I'm open to the topic being moved at any rate.

P.S: Anyone know who did the art for Lost Caverns of Tsojcanth? Those old modules are lousy about their art credits...

Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
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Posted - 10 Aug 2022 :  02:41:50  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Keep in mind that those monster entry shades and the inhabitants of the city of Shade are almost nothing alike.

WotC had a really, really bad tendency to reuse names and titles for stuff that may or may not be like the prior version; we had multiple books called Drow of the Underark and Draconomicon, for example, a couple Shining South books, and others.

On the monster side, shades are an excellent example of "let's make a thing that's almost entirely different but has the same name as something else!" Another great example is dragonborn; in 3E, a dragonborn was a human or near-human who opted to be reborn and hatch out of an egg with a more draconic appearance -- and then 4E gave us an entire civilization of naturally reproducing ones (that hated dragons, despite being called "dragonborn," and were for some reason ready recruits for the Cult of the Dragon).

Greyhawk was the de facto default setting for a long time, before we got Dragonlance and the Realms and other stuff. It wasn't quite "everything is Greyhawk" as much as "if it's not explicitly Greyhawk, it's prolly still Greyhawk."

Greyhawk was the default for 3E, though I don't recall it getting any support other than being in the core books. I've no proof, but I've long suspected this was part of the price for getting Gary Gygax involved with WotC.

Whilst I know a little about Greyhawk and have a little of the older material, I can't offer much info about the setting itself -- most of my exposure to it was the early novels written by Gygax or the ones by Rose Estes, and they didn't grab me enough to make me want to know more about the setting.

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Ayrik
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Canada
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Posted - 10 Aug 2022 :  02:56:17  Show Profile Send Ayrik a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Shades were published in Monster Manual 2 (1E) circa 1982.

They might have been published even earlier, in one of the older sources which were compiled into MM2 (Monsters & Treasure, Blackmoor, Eldritch Wizardry, Dragon, etc) - this seems likely (to me) since they're one of the more sophisticated monster entries like drow, gith, etc.

They were part of D&D long before the Forgotten Realms were published and long before the Shadovar (or any of the 3E/3.5E/4E shade-manic fashions) were conceived.

[/Ayrik]

Edited by - Ayrik on 10 Aug 2022 02:59:00
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The Masked Mage
Great Reader

USA
2395 Posts

Posted - 10 Aug 2022 :  13:38:20  Show Profile Send The Masked Mage a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Like Wooly noted, the old shades and the Shadovar are not necessarily the same thing. However, it seems to be the case that while most FR shades are shadovar, Cale being one prominent exception, not all shadovar were shades. I think this tracks with the original shade idea, that they were beings that trade their soul for shadowstuff to gain power. I think even one of the princes was not a shade.

It did seem to me that somehow the shades from shade lacked many of the weaknesses of shades, as they were constantly out doing their thing and being super human during full daylight - which is a very-unshade thing to do.

My favorite treatment of shades was out of Dragon Magazine, somewhere along the way. That gave different stats and abilities for each class of shade. This way a shade wizard and a shade warrior were different.

As Ayrik said, they were originally in the MMII. The only earlier reference to shades I know of is a confusing one from the D&D Companion Set, which I think was originally done in 74 and republished like 6 times. There, the shade is basically what is called a shadow elsewhere, and is one of 3 kinds of phantoms: the phantom, the shade, and the vision.

They were not in the Old White Box though - which despite having Monsters & Treasure - didn't have much in the way of monsters. They also were not part of the similarly named Monster and Treasure Assortments book. If they were originally in one of the early adventures I fail to recall - there were less than a handful officially printed before 82. More than likely they came out of one of Gary Gygax's home adventures.
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The Masked Mage
Great Reader

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2395 Posts

Posted - 10 Aug 2022 :  13:58:10  Show Profile Send The Masked Mage a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Italian Archmage Karsus
P.S: Anyone know who did the art for Lost Caverns of Tsojcanth? Those old modules are lousy about their art credits...



When originally published there was pretty much NO ART for this. It was all hand typed by Gygax and published by MDG. The version with the art came later. The maps were hand drawn in the original. If you can manage to get your hands on an original you are very lucky.

As for the art, from the later TSR publication, it looks like Larry Elmore to me.
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TheIriaeban
Master of Realmslore

USA
1162 Posts

Posted - 10 Aug 2022 :  19:06:24  Show Profile Send TheIriaeban a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Just a FYI, on page 192 of the 2e Wizard's Spell Compendium Vol. 1 is the 9th level spell Create Shade. It talks about infusing someone with the shadowstuff of the Plane of Shadown. The type of shade created (shadovar or historical, Greyhawk shade) is not specified.

"Iriaebor is a fine city. So what if you can have violence between merchant groups break out at any moment. Not every city can offer dinner AND a show."

My FR writeups - http://www.mediafire.com/folder/um3liz6tqsf5n/Documents
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
36244 Posts

Posted - 11 Aug 2022 :  00:03:59  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by TheIriaeban

Just a FYI, on page 192 of the 2e Wizard's Spell Compendium Vol. 1 is the 9th level spell Create Shade. It talks about infusing someone with the shadowstuff of the Plane of Shadown. The type of shade created (shadovar or historical, Greyhawk shade) is not specified.



It would have been the historical ones since the others didn't come along until 3E.

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Italian Archmage Karsus
Acolyte

14 Posts

Posted - 12 Aug 2022 :  00:20:50  Show Profile Send Italian Archmage Karsus a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Alright, then, the OG Shade can be understood as coming from Monster Manual II (Aug '83).

Thanks for identifying the art as Elmore's!
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Diffan
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USA
4332 Posts

Posted - 12 Aug 2022 :  12:04:52  Show Profile Send Diffan a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

Another great example is dragonborn; in 3E, a dragonborn was a human or near-human who opted to be reborn and hatch out of an egg with a more draconic appearance -- and then 4E gave us an entire civilization of naturally reproducing ones (that hated dragons, despite being called "dragonborn," and were for some reason ready recruits for the Cult of the Dragon).



For starters, Dragonborn from Abeir (specifically Tymanther) don't like dragons because they were enslaved by them on Abeir before the emergence of Toril while Dragonborn from the Rite of Bahamut probably want to serve the Platinum Dragon. So both exist currently on Toril. Not to mention creatures called Dragon-Kin and Half-Dragons too are around.

The Cult of the Dragon targets Dragonborn down on their luck and destitute to recruit them for their purposes. Probably manipulating them and twisting them into servitude.

4E Realms = Great Taste, Less Filling.

"If WotC were to put out a box of free money, people would still complain how it was folded."
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
36244 Posts

Posted - 12 Aug 2022 :  15:38:15  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Diffan

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

Another great example is dragonborn; in 3E, a dragonborn was a human or near-human who opted to be reborn and hatch out of an egg with a more draconic appearance -- and then 4E gave us an entire civilization of naturally reproducing ones (that hated dragons, despite being called "dragonborn," and were for some reason ready recruits for the Cult of the Dragon).



For starters, Dragonborn from Abeir (specifically Tymanther) don't like dragons because they were enslaved by them on Abeir before the emergence of Toril while Dragonborn from the Rite of Bahamut probably want to serve the Platinum Dragon. So both exist currently on Toril. Not to mention creatures called Dragon-Kin and Half-Dragons too are around.


I get why the 4E dragonborn hate dragons -- I just always thought it was odd that a race that hates another type of creature is named for them.

And do the 3E dragonborn still exist? I mean, I don't recall anything saying they were wiped out -- but at the same time, I don't recall them being mentioned, at all, after 3E.

quote:
Originally posted by Diffan

The Cult of the Dragon targets Dragonborn down on their luck and destitute to recruit them for their purposes. Probably manipulating them and twisting them into servitude.



It just seems odd. "Hey, dude that hates dragons, want to join the Cult of the Dragon?"

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Italian Archmage Karsus
Acolyte

14 Posts

Posted - 12 Aug 2022 :  16:11:41  Show Profile Send Italian Archmage Karsus a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert
I get why the 4E dragonborn hate dragons -- I just always thought it was odd that a race that hates another type of creature is named for them.

And do the 3E dragonborn still exist? I mean, I don't recall anything saying they were wiped out -- but at the same time, I don't recall them being mentioned, at all, after 3E.


I figure spellplague might have made it hard to get the ritual working, myself, and the arrival of the 4e dragonborn might also have made it tough to distinguish one from the other. You'd have to ask them "Who's Elminster", and if they answer correctly they're 3E, if they go on a tangent about Abeir and the Primordials they're 4E.

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert
It just seems odd. "Hey, dude that hates dragons, want to join the Cult of the Dragon?"


I thought they were enslaved by the dragons. Might give them some measure of familiarity to put a dragon in power, they might also think that if we can just get those dragons in power on OUR terms everything will be better.
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Ayrik
Great Reader

Canada
7682 Posts

Posted - 12 Aug 2022 :  22:35:13  Show Profile Send Ayrik a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert
quote:
Originally posted by Diffan
The Cult of the Dragon targets Dragonborn down on their luck and destitute to recruit them for their purposes. Probably manipulating them and twisting them into servitude.
It just seems odd. "Hey, dude that hates dragons, want to join the Cult of the Dragon?"

Simple chit-chat recruitment might work, sometimes. I'm sure an unsavoury underground organization like the Cult would know all the tricks of the trade.

But I suspect most of their (reluctant) dragonborn recruits would be magically bound, compelled, enslaved. If the Cult has potions which can turn a powerful adult wyrm into an (unwilling) living or unliving puppet then they likely have similar options with dragonborn.

Dragonborn might be hit-or-miss agents. But dragonbornliches or undragonborn (or whatever they might be called) could be potent and useful agents for the Cult.

[/Ayrik]
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Italian Archmage Karsus
Acolyte

14 Posts

Posted - 23 Aug 2022 :  23:34:03  Show Profile Send Italian Archmage Karsus a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Hey, I think I found something about where shades were going to be from...
https://forum.rpg.net/index.php?threads/lets-read-ad-d-2e-monstrous-compendium-annual-vol-iv.695830/page-28

This guy too asks why shades are greyhawk, he gets something of an answer- they were apparently cutting room stuff for a book about the Shadow Plane.
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