One of the founders of our hobby and one of the most unsung contributors to Dungeons & Dragons, Len Lakofka has passed away at the age of 76.
Along with the many adventures, classes, spells, and rules he created, Len was also father of the Suel in Greyhawk, designer of their gods, and namesake of the Lendore Isles.
The value of his work goes without saying, but his presence will be sorely missed. The adventures of Leomund go on.
First, Let me be clear... I love the OJ and have nothing but respect for the staff and contributors
That said, I felt their should be a thread to discuss the new journal, your concerns, errors and misprints. Let's do what all GH fans do best, pick things apart and discuss them to the smallest detail.
OJ 16 (Ahlissa Article)
Prince (Graf) Reydrich (LE male human W10)
Ivid the Undying
19th-level mage AL NE (LE).
I assume his level is a misprint but the alignment change, could be significant as the article protrays Reydrich as less paranoid then presented in ItU (Province reorganized into 6 large grafs instead of 100 small independent fiefs and the scaled down standing army).
Bear in mind that I submitted the Ahlissa Gazeteer to the Oerth Journal over a year ago when Marc-Tizoc was still editor-in-chief. There are a few things I would have done differently now (I didn't have a better term than "counties" at that time; now I use "landgrafdoms"). I was also a bit surprised to see the version of my article I had long ago submitted lacked endnotes (as well as the maps I had originally submitted, but oh well). There's plenty of "stuff" buried in that article that endnotes would have helped explain (plus, after seeing Wackford's article, mine looks so un-scholarly). :(
So, the short of it is, I will gladly explain my reasoning behind anything that needs explaining.
One, Reydrich's officially recognized level depends on him being who he appears to be. I chose to pursue more openly something that Sargent only seemed to be hinting at, that Reydrich had been replaced by a simulacrum by the Scarlet Brotherhood. This is also the chief in-game explanation for the reductions in the political and military structure of South Province/Ahlissa.
Two, the Alignment difference was a conscious choice to ignore Sargent, who I have long felt assigned Alignments more with variation in mind than to match his own characterizations. Reydrich didn't luck into his position or bully his way there -- he took over by playing the game better than the Chelors ever had. That's Lawful in my book. Betraying his liege was evil, but not Chaotic. He did it by the book, going over his boss' head to Ivid.
1) If the SB had replaced him with a simulacrum would "it" be the same level 19 ? (no experts on clones, personally anti-clone)
2) Always felt Herzog was an Oerid origin but you claim it as flan, what supports this interpretation?
3) I agree with the alignment call, I always felt Reydrich was more LE, guess it depends how ruthless you want to make him. ( I always thought Sargent take was too aggressive and brutal especially the view of oeridians as heartless warmongers)
PS. Any chance of seeing those maps in future articles either in OJ or Canonfire?
1) Not that I feel a strong need to adhere to game mechanics anymore, but the simulacrum theory works in 1st ed. AD&D because a) a simulacrum is more programmable than a clone and b) even a spell- enhanced simulacrum only has up to 50% of the abilities of the original -- and a Reynard reduced in power by half is less dangerous a tool than a 19th-20th level wizard.
Granted, a "programmed" doppleganger would have worked too, until someone asked Reynard to cast a spell (as dopplegangers had no character class levels back in the "old days").
2) There was once a long and hot debate on a Greytalk chat about the origin of the Great Kingdom's titles. While both sides have strong interpretations, there is no way to point to canon and say a term like "herzog" was Flan-derived or not. I chose to say it was, as it goes with the theme of Flan-absorption I was going for in the article.
3) Thanks for agreeing (though this should not preclude Oerdians from being heartless warmongers too!).
P.S. I hope to contribute more South Province/Ahlissa material to Oerth Journal, should it continue. Whatever they don't want I'll be making available somewhere.
I thought the article about Pelor was a darng choice for inclusion. Instead of choosing an obscure deity to stake out as one's own, this author chose to write about a common, and commonly wrote about, deity. Yet the article seems to be the author's distinctly own take on Pelor instead of compiling and reconciling the many fan-based writings on the ol' sun god. Or is it? Perhaps it is just that my own take on Pelor is so distinctly different. Are this author's assertions more commonly held than I think?
For instance, I was taken aback by the assertion that a rivalry existed between Pelor and Pholtus (not just their clerics, but the deities themselves, it would seem). How many DMs here play Pelor and Pholtus that way?
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