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    Canonfire :: View topic - Reshuffling Devils and Demons in 4e - Oh My!
    Canonfire Forum Index -> Greyhawk- D&D 4th Edition
    Reshuffling Devils and Demons in 4e - Oh My!
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    Grandmaster Greytalker

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    Thu Aug 30, 2007 10:27 am  
    Reshuffling Devils and Demons in 4e - Oh My!

    As GH has lots of lower planar folks running around, I figure the following is germane to CF. This is Rich Baker of Wotc speaking about the new lower planar order in 4e. Seems Wotc is reshuffling the deck a bit -

    - Devils are angels who rebelled. They rose up against the deity they served and murdered him. The crime of deicide is unimaginably perverse for angels, and hence devils were cursed and imprisoned in the Nine Hells.
    - The Nine Hells are what became of the murdered deity's divine realm after his death. The Hells are the devils' prison, and it is difficult for them to get out without mortal aid.
    - We've re-sorted demons and devils a bit, since we want these two categories of monsters to make a little more sense. Devils tend to be more humanoid in form, usually fight with weapons, and often wear armor. Most have horns, wings, and tails. One consequence of this: the erinyes and the succubus were holding down pretty similar territory, so we've decided that they're the same monster, called the succubus, and it's a devil.
    - Ice devils don't look like other devils. We've decided that they are actually a demonic/yugoloth race... one that was entrapped by Mephistopheles long ago in an infernal contract. So ice devils hate other devils, retain their insect-like appearance, and have a special loyalty to Mephistopheles. It's one of the reasons why Asmodeus has never chosen to move against Mephistopheles. Asmodeus would of course win if he did, but that would let the ice devils out of their contract.

    Credit Text - ENWorld.
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    GVD
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    Thu Aug 30, 2007 3:36 pm  

    It might not end up being used in my version of Greyhawk, but I really like this depiction of devils & demons.

    I really like that demons are monsters and devils are humanoid... makes a lot of sense to me. And that Ice Devil thing is just cool. :)

    Cheers!
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    Merric Blackman
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    Thu Aug 30, 2007 3:41 pm  

    I too agree, this is an improvement on a subject that needed work. In my opinion, this background fits into my idea of Greyhawk far better than the ongoing lingering version that we currently have. I have always seen Greyhawk as more of a real world tie in anyway, with knighthood orders, and other historical ideas incorporated into Greyhawk rather than starting from the ground up with new ideas. I welcome this change. If things continue this direction (especially if WOTC provides some Greyhawk support, I may end up changing my mind about things). Always have to leave a window of opportunity.
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    Eileen of Greyhawk, Prophet of Istus, Messenger of the Gods
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    Thu Aug 30, 2007 4:57 pm  

    Groan, here we go again with the tinkering of lower planes creatures. Except now instead of renaming them its a reordering. The new Biblical backstory is fine I guess, but that succubi reversal will put the kibosh on at least one Demonomicon of Iggwilv article (Malcanthet).
    GreySage

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    Thu Aug 30, 2007 6:05 pm  

    mortellan wrote:
    Groan, here we go again with the tinkering of lower planes creatures. Except now instead of renaming them its a reordering. The new Biblical backstory is fine I guess, but that succubi reversal will put the kibosh on at least one Demonomicon of Iggwilv article (Malcanthet).


    Jesus, I didn't even think of that. Way to write an awesome demon lord out of the canon, Rich Baker, you absolute idiot.

    The Biblical backstory fails, in my opinion, because, first, it tries to turn the servants of a single god into a major planar race, and individual gods are just not that important in a cosmology with multiple pantheons, unless we're talking Tharizdun. Secondly, it fails because in core D&D alignments must come first, as the cosmic principles which define the planes. The devils, as an alignment-based planar race, the personifications of lawful evil and the Nine Hells, precede the gods by necessity. The alignments are the planes; the gods only squat on them.

    It also fails because it's so simple-minded; I like my mythology more complex than that, but I guess I shouldn't expect complexity from someone so unimaginative that they can't think of a way to differentiate between succubi and erinyes.
    Master Greytalker

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    Thu Aug 30, 2007 8:07 pm  

    Its pretty obvious that they are not keen on the personification of alignment concept if that blurb is an accurate guide to their thinking. Admittedly, I don't especially use alignments or the concept of personifications either. But you need to toss them aside with a reason. There doesn't seem to be any real reason other than "umm, we think its insufficient to differentiate demons and devils".

    And /all/ devils are the servants of a single god? As Rasgon says, Umm, just who was this god and why does he rate such high powered and numerous servants? Nothing in D&D to date would be the basis for such at thing.

    Is it going to be harder to summon devils than to summon demons or other races that aren't "imprisoned"? I'm not even going to touch the problem of being unable to differentiate between erinyes and succubi. How weak is that?


    Last edited by Vormaerin on Thu Aug 30, 2007 9:36 pm; edited 1 time in total
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    Thu Aug 30, 2007 8:53 pm  

    The more I think about it, not only will 3E and 4E be incompatable so will their cosmologies. The side effect of taking Greyhawk (the original cosmology) out of the Core (like we always wanted) is that they will rewrite the cosmology to be something even MORE generic. Should have seen this coming when they said in the 4E announcement that they want to start using more familiar deities like norse and greek ones, and that Asmodeus would be promoted. Yup, totally different than what we've been used to for decades.
    Adept Greytalker

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    Thu Aug 30, 2007 9:06 pm  

    Although there are elements of 4e that I am/was leaning toward anyway, the more I hear about it the less interested I am. Sure, I started to place devils as fallen angels - at least some of them. Sure, my group uses a magic recharge system. Sure, I was thinking at some time of stripping classes down and using a Talent tree type of idea, someday. But 4e is just sounding more and more like a whole different game. Not D&D.
    Not Greyhawk.

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    Long live Greyhawk!
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    Black Hand of Oblivion

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    Fri Aug 31, 2007 1:07 am  

    rasgon wrote:
    mortellan wrote:
    The new Biblical backstory is fine I guess, but that succubi reversal will put the kibosh on at least one Demonomicon of Iggwilv article (Malcanthet).


    Jesus, I didn't even think of that. Way to write an awesome demon lord out of the canon, Rich Baker, you absolute idiot.


    Yes! What a vindictive idiot! Wink Rich isn't writing for GH, or with GH in mind, or with any previous Dragon articles in mind most likely, so take that as sarcasm. Still, one can't help to notice the similarity between succubi and erinyes, but I've always differentiated them in how they do what they do, even though it is similar. It would help if there was info on how demons and daemons will fit into the scope of things too, just to aid in illustrating the grand scheme of things to come. We'll have to wait and see, and even then who the heck says we have to use any of it.

    Or you can just say that Malcanthet is a rogue devil who has much more in common with demons and the way they act than with devils and so flourishes among them. Fixed. Simmer down now rasgon, and before you fly off the handle again, look at your *W.W.G.D.* bracelet and ask yourself "What would Gygax do?". Laughing
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    Fri Aug 31, 2007 2:02 am  

    I never had a problem telling Succubi and Erinyes apart:

    Succubi love you to death.

    Erinyes hack you to death with an axe.

    Simple, no?

    Anyway, while you may not like the new stuff, there's nothing stopping you using the old system with your Greyhawk campaigns. When I use the Diabolic legions in my GH games, I'll be using the "Corrupted by the evil they were fighting and their own pride" origin that we got in Fiendish Codex II.

    And as for you Malcanthet fans out there, I'm sure that will a little imagination, you can find a way to keep her in the thick of all things Demonic.
    GreySage

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    Fri Aug 31, 2007 5:13 am  

    Cebrion wrote:
    [Yes! What a vindictive idiot!


    I don't see him as vindictive, but he's clearly a simpleton. I'm sorry, but it's hard for me to imagine anything so lacking in both wit and imagination.

    As for the difference between erinyes and succubi, as handled (brilliantly, I think) by someone with both wit and imagination, I recommend The Ecology of the Succubus and Erinyes. It expanded my mind, and I've never looked at either the same way since.

    Malcanthet as a rogue devil? I apologize again, but no - claiming Chaos can't be sexy is really an affront to the alignment system as a whole. It's bad for the game.
    Journeyman Greytalker

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    Fri Aug 31, 2007 6:15 am  

    Well, we could always homebrew a new monster to replace the chaotic Sucubus. Maybe the Lilin could be used as a base?
    Journeyman Greytalker

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    Fri Aug 31, 2007 7:49 am  
    Does it matter?

    Honestly, does it matter what "core" D&D does with the outer planes? Eberron was entirely different from the core, and it manages fine. So will Greyhawk.

    Rasgon did ping something... if you want to find a reason for Devils to be "cast out", then use Tharizdun. Betrayal during the most important battle of the cosmos (the imprisonment of Tharizdun) sounds like a perfectly good reason to cast them out, and even to force them to be Lawful.

    I look at the sundering between GH and 4E as a Very Good Thing. It's liberating as hell, and lets us play what we want without arguing how to crowbar the latest WotC sourcebook into our dusty shelf of ancient tomes.

    Telas
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    Fri Aug 31, 2007 8:38 pm  

    Actually, thinking about this further, I'd begun wondering if they were going to ditch the Great Wheel and that whole cosmology completely. They've moved away from it in the FR, Eberron has a completely different cosmology from the start.. and now this about devils.

    Might we expect something more Ebberon like in the 4e cosmology? I certainly wouldn't be surprised.
    Master Greytalker

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    Fri Aug 31, 2007 10:17 pm  

    Vormaerin:

    I don't have Eberron material so can you give me a rundown on how they have the entire cosmology set up?
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    Fri Aug 31, 2007 10:57 pm  

    The word choice was part of the joke too rasgon. I will smiley you to death if you choose to persist... Laughing

    That ecology articles is good. My offered explanation is of course pointed at those who want to use the any new 4e materail on this subject. I do agree that making succubi and erinyes the same creature(rather than better explaining both) is a solution lacking in imagination, creativity, and smacks of simple laziness.
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    Sat Sep 01, 2007 12:47 am  

    I'm not an expert on Ebberon by any means. But, essentially, they don't have any sort of real pattern to the planes. The world of Ebberon is in varying degrees of contact with other dimensions/realities/planes/whatever. There is 13 of them, IIRC. Thirteen is a special number in Eberron lore it seems. They are not all specifically aligned, though some are. Rather, they are the home domains of various creatures or magical powers. They all orbit eberron and their closeness to it and to each other changes.
    Black Hand of Oblivion

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    Sat Sep 01, 2007 6:17 pm  

    That is a good idea. Make a cosmological pattern fit your world, not make your world fit the established cosmological pattern.
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    Sat Sep 01, 2007 8:11 pm  

    Cebrion

    Didn't you know by now that it isn't WOTC who are backwards it is us. After all, they create, we buy, they change so it is inconsistent with what they created, so we buy more. By the time 6th edition comes around Gygax will be glad because they will go back to negative A.C., weapon proficiencies, etc. By 7th edition they will try something new and call it THACO, stating WE NEED TO GET BACK TO THE BASICS OF D&D, OH HECK LETS EVEN HAVE AN ADVANCED VERSION.

    By the time they get to 8th edition, are 3.5 books will be up to date again.

    Sarcasm.......
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    Eileen of Greyhawk, Prophet of Istus, Messenger of the Gods
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    Sun Sep 02, 2007 12:33 pm  
    Bah....

    I have never felt so close to Boccob then now.

    My attitude towards the new editions is uncaring. I still think the changes from 2nd edition were too much!

    A new edition does not thrill me, I never got on board with 3 or 3.5. I just keep plugging away with old school 1st and a smattering of 2nd ed rules. On the occasion I have to look at 3rd ed stuff, I just use it for the fluff and avoid the crunch. Makes it easier to ignore what I don't want to use.

    At any rate, my take on the diabolic and demonic is to keep it in a fantasy setting and less biblical. Inconsistancies are easier to explain away in pure fantasy then basing things on classic myths, literature, or biblical references. That being said, I prefer more Dante and Milton in my Hells then the more "P.C." 2nd ed Planescape setting.

    But to each his own.

    O-D
    Black Hand of Oblivion

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    Sun Sep 02, 2007 11:13 pm  

    I'm pretty much of the same mind set in so much as I will not be converting to 4e. When I told my players that 4e had been announced they immediately said that they had no interest in switching to another version of the game. I figured that would be their response.

    The only interest I have in 4e is seeing new ways of doing things, a new perspective. Perhaps 4e will give me some ideas, perhaps not. Either way, 4e is not such a big deal as far as I am concerned. I do hope it turns out good, as that will be a good thing for the game as whole.
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    Tue Sep 04, 2007 3:55 pm  
    Re: Bah....

    Osmund-Davizid wrote:

    A new edition does not thrill me, I never got on board with 3 or 3.5. I just keep plugging away with old school 1st and a smattering of 2nd ed rules. On the occasion I have to look at 3rd ed stuff, I just use it for the fluff and avoid the crunch. Makes it easier to ignore what I don't want to use.
    O-D
    I agree with those sentiments whole heartedly, O-D. At first I really liked some of the 3E material about demons and devils, but it really went sideways with 3.5. My biggest beef is how they handle demon princes and arch devils, I wish they'd make up their minds.

    I'm still on the fence about 4E but I'm glad to see they're trying to do more to differentiate the two.After reading The Prince of Demons (Dungeon 150) and seeing "General Ghorvash", "Captain Urbala", and my personal favorite "War-Secretary General Gromsfed" (what does this guy do, the paperwork?) I thought it was in the 9 Hells. And to top it all off, six different new stats for Demogorgon? None of which, I'll add, that match up with the so-called "authoritive" FC1 version. Its inconsistencies like this that just make me shake my head.

    -Trevor Watson
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    Thu Sep 06, 2007 2:41 am  

    Well, I think the 'ranks' in Demogorgon's armies were just demons taking whatever title they liked best, which is one of the benefits of being really powerful: You can have whatever title you like. Laughing

    As for Demo's stats, I think that arch-fiends are always as powerful as needed by the campaign.
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    Fri Sep 07, 2007 10:33 am  
    Re: Bah....

    Luz wrote:
    "War-Secretary General Gromsfed" (what does this guy do, the paperwork?) -Trevor Watson


    Read closer. I think the author was making a pun on a real-life political personage Wink
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    Mon Sep 24, 2007 5:50 am  

    Look who's on the cover of the Monster Manual 4.0:



    Yup. And according to ENWorld he gets stats in there as well. A return to the old days when Archfiends were included in Monster Manuals?

    Also, apparently Asmodeus is getting godhood, which I'm not too wild about. I prefer him as the ultimate embodiment of Law and Evil in the lower planes, and not as just another LE godling.

    F.Y.I., there is also a LE god of corruption and tyrany called Asmodeus in Pathfinder. Just so you know.
    Master Greytalker

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    Mon Sep 24, 2007 6:30 pm  

    I didn't mind the cover art of the three books, but I would have gone with something more recognizable and less unique, oh, such as a dragons, giants, trolls, orcs, pegusus, centuar, etc. Hmmm...reminds me of 1st edition. That's what I would have done, redid the cover artwork from 1st edition. I actually prefer the picture concept better.

    I also didn't care for the logo signs across mid cover as they do. I would have put the bands on the top and bottom and left the picture intact.
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    Tue Sep 25, 2007 1:37 am  

    True, Orcus may not be as instantly reconsiable as an orc, unicorn or some other common knowledge creature, but he is very impressive looking. If only the bands wern't there.

    Oh, and there is another article on the Demon/Devil situation:

    Quote:
    In the real world, "demon" is synonymous with "devil." "Abyss" and "hell" have a similar relationship. D&D designers have struggled with these facts since 1977 when the Advanced Dungeons & Dragons game depicted demons and devils, the Abyss and the Nine Hells. The original basis for the division was alignment. Aligned planes existed to provide a meaningful afterlife for similarly aligned characters, and a need to fill those planes with natives resulted in demons being distinct from devils. As the game evolved, the original division remained, but too many similarities persisted. The advent of 4th Edition lets us accentuate the differences between the two primary species of fiends.

    Throughout demons' and devils' existence in the D&D game, resemblances between them have been stronger and more numerous than differences. Both species are extraplanar forces of evil that seek souls to supplement their numbers. Each breed has wretched and implike creatures at the bottom of the hierarchy and godlike archfiends at the top. Each member of both species has a wide array of similar (and often superfluous) supernatural powers. Most demons and devils are superior to members of typical PC races in every way, including incredible intelligence. Their purposes in the material world have always been similar.

    In the original AD&D Monster Manual, Gary Gygax admitted that devils ďsomewhat resemble the demons both in their characteristics and abilities.Ē AD&D 2nd Edition kept the planar structure of the original game. Demons and devils became tanaríri and baatezu, respectively, but little made them distinct other than their categorical names. Only a conflict called the Blood War kept them from overrunning the material world. However, this evil-on-evil fight didnít expand the possibilities for typical D&D play. On the contrary, the Blood War brought the motivations and hierarchy of demons and devils closer together. The 3rd Edition of D&Dretained so many of 2nd Editionís concepts that it did little to clarify the situation until the release of Fiendish Codex I. Fourth Edition changes all that.

    In 4th Edition, the Nine Hells are an astral dominion among other deific abodes in the Astral Sea (more on that in an upcoming Design & Development column). The resident deity is Asmodeus, who as an angel in primeval times, led an army of his fellows against his celestial master and murdered that god. Although Asmodeus gained divine might from his foul deed, he and his followers also suffered their victimís dying curse. Under the power of that malediction, all the rebellious angels twisted in form and became devils. Worse still, the murdered godís words transformed Asmodeus's dominion into a nightmarish place and bound the newborn devils to it. To this day, devils plot to escape their prison, weaving lies and corruption to ensure their eventual freedom and to seize even greater power.

    Asmodeus rules Hell with despotic pride, and all devils conform to his strict hierarchy or face destruction. Within the chain of command, lesser devils use whatever power they have to mimic their ultimate leader. Devils work to gain influence in the cosmos, especially among mortals in the world. They eagerly respond to any summons and readily form cleverly worded pacts. They plan and build to meet their needs, making and using all sorts of devices, tools, and weapons. A devil might be supernaturally potent, and it might possess incredible magic items, but its greatest assets are its shrewdly calculating mind and eternal patience. Devils want to impose a sort of order -- specifically theirs -- on the cosmos.

    Not so with demons.

    In the Abyss, which gapes like a festering wound in the landscape of the Elemental Tempest, demons teem, eternally divided among themselves simply by their insatiable lust for ruin. Legend says that the Chained God, Tharizdun, found a seed of evil in the young cosmos, and during the godsí war with the primordials, he threw that seed into the Elemental Tempest. There, the evil seed despoiled all that came into contact with it (some say it tainted Tharizdun himself) and created the Abyss as it burned a hole in the very structure of the plane. Elemental beings that came too close to the Abyss became trapped and warped. Any desire they have turns to the longing to obliterate the gods, creation, and even one another. They became demons.

    Most demons are savage and fearless engines of annihilation. Although sometimes driven by unspeakable yearning or by horrifying demon lords to gather in groups, demons have no real organization and no singular aim. Demons donít negotiate, and they build nothing lasting. Most use tooth and claw rather than artificial weapons. They care little or nothing for souls. Even the mightiest demon lords manipulate other demons by using threats, direct violence, or the promise of more destruction through affiliation. Although the lords of the Abyss that veteran D&D players know and love to hate still exist, no monolithic hierarchy supports any demonís influence. Although a demon might want to destroy another creature and take that creatureís power, success only results in the winning demon using and squandering what it has seized. Demons have no regard for the responsibilities of authority, and they care little for keeping what they acquire. Theyíre forces of unmaking, and a universe under them would reflect the horror that is the Abyss, if that universe survived at all.

    What does a clearer distinction between the two major species of fiends mean for your game? If you need a devious fiend that cares about souls and works on long-term schemes, use a devil. However, wholesale slaughter, pointless suffering, and terrifying devastation call for a demon. A villain or even a player character might bargain with devils, but those who conjure demons do so only to wreak havoc on their enemies. In short, the unambiguous division of the fiends is another way 4th Edition makes the game easier to design for and to play.


    Hmm. While I do think they have a point in making the two races noticably different, I'm still leary about Asmody getting godhood, and the god murder part. But I'm sure that it can be fixed/ignored in order to make it GH friendly.
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    Tue Sep 25, 2007 2:19 am  

    I figure if what we are reading is accurate and holds though into publication, Greyhawkers are going to become masters of adjusting 4th edition material. Practice makes perfect.
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    Tue Sep 25, 2007 2:52 am  

    Although I do approach what 4.0 is doing to the lower planes with some trepidation, I think there are some good things in there.

    I think the whole "Devils have a hard time getting to the material plane" thing I may keep while changing the reason why. The Pact Primeval should be a good bet, and it'll allow me to put more focus on Faustian Pacts, soul harvesting and the general corruption and long range plotting that devil's excel at.

    I've always kinda prefered Hell over the Abyss to be honest. Wink
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    Tue Sep 25, 2007 7:54 am  

    As more details of 4E come out, it strikes how similar it is to many of my own ideas, yet taken in a direction I never would have gone. Many of the concepts behind devils and demons expressed in 4E are the same as I have for my homebrew campaign, yet there are glaring differences. The structure and heierarchy described in the new article, the "In 4th Edition, the Nine Hells are an astral dominion among other deific abodes in the Astral Sea" line, and so on are the same ideas I have. Tharizdun fouind a "seed of evil"? What?? Asmodeus commited deicide? The Elemental Tempest?? Yeah... So, I'm still kind of torn on this whole 4E thing. I know I'll take a look at it when it comes out, and I know my group isn't going to switch, but I'll only know if I like it or not when it comes out. I like some of the changes they're doing; I don't approve of others. We'll see... Confused
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    Tue Sep 25, 2007 10:17 am  

    IMO, this is unadulterated crappe. They are invalidating the existing cosmology, which is fine so long as they are replacing it with something cooler. I don't see this in the least. Demons in particular are going from nift and coolness to pointless damagedoers and bags of hit points. Count me absolutely loathing this.
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    Fri May 02, 2008 9:50 am  
    Eryines are angels too!

    In Greek mythology Erinyes were angels of vengeance used by the gods to act out punishment on mortals. Translation through the centuries vilified them because some Erinyes were portrayed, like the Furies who tortured corrupted souls in Hades, as evil by association of their deeds. How about elevating Erinyes back to celestial status, because the gods took pity on their own creations who were only doing their bidding. Most lost their way to mortals as devils were seen as a greater evil in need to repent their sins.

    Or, they were used as infiltrators by the gods to save stolen souls by the devils. I would keep the odd Erinye as lawful evil for those still corrupted in hating the weak willed! The celestial Erinye becomes lawful neutral as the gods still want to use them as tools for punishing worshippers who do bad deeds in their gods name?

    I have kept demons as Far Realm like monsters of destruction while devils are an angel counterpart; they are sophisticated human-like creatures with no emotions but hate because they have no soul to feel anything. Devils are redeemable by angels (or by mortal clerics & paladins),while demons are non-negotiating creatures meant to be destroyed by everyone, including by devils! For those demons too humanoid, they are devils who have become chaotic evil, for whatever reasons, capable of controlling chaotic hordes of mindless creatures! To tell which devils who have become chaotic they are referred to as Tanari'ri by the Baatezu devils. And referred by all others as demons, because non-outsiders can't tell the difference!

    So I never got the demons using weapons, so it make more sense to me for devils to wield weapons since they are closely related to humans (or whatever humanoid is considered the archetype for that deity).
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    Fri May 02, 2008 10:26 am  
    Hell over the Abyss!

    Quote:
    I've always kinda preferred Hell over the Abyss to be honest. Wink


    Me too! I understand on how the D&D creators wanted to have a plane of existence for all alignments, such as LE & CE, but it has just made a mish-mash out of everything. I pose an idea of melding the two planes together. By referring to 3.0E Deities & Demigods, it is even written as a precursor to the the two tied together!

    Nessus, Hell's last and deepest layer, has a rift called the Serpents Coil - sometimes called The Abyss. The layer was punctured by Asmodeous plummet from the heavens. From the centre of this rift IS the dead deity Asmodeous killed and used its remaining divinity to form the Nine Hells! But as he was cursed along with all other's whom joined him in deicide, the dead god reached forth and pierced the fabric of reality, to the Far Realm; as to hinder Asmodeous by seeping out creatures to challenge him for his home - demons?

    Or the black ooze as blood from Asmodeous's wounds, is blending with the chaos seepage from the Far Realm corrupting his devils into Tanar'ri! These new devils have challenged Asmodeous for existence and thus the Blood War (see my earlier post).

    DavidBedlam wrote:
    Although I do approach what 4.0 is doing to the lower planes with some trepidation, I think there are some good things in there.


    I have always taken the good from the bad when anything new is published from D&D. But I will be staying off the 4E band wagon for sure.


    Last edited by Gravenhurst on Thu May 08, 2008 9:06 pm; edited 1 time in total
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    Fri May 02, 2008 11:22 am  
    Erinyes passing off the baton to the Succubus!

    mortellan wrote:
    Groan, here we go again with the tinkering of lower planes creatures. Except now instead of renaming them itís a reordering. The new Biblical backstory is fine I guess, but that succubi reversal will put the kibosh on at least one Demonomicon of Iggwilv article (Malcanthet).


    Not really, unless you plan to play with 4E rules? In my last couple posts I have suggested alternatives for keeping things the way they are or offering my own explanations for trying to make the changes work. I suggested the Erinyes gain back their ancient heritage by becoming a celestial again, changing to lawful neutral. Erinyes irrevocably lost to the taint of evil would stay as Succubus but their alignment changes to lawful evil thus becoming a devil! And the Lilitu are corrupted devils filling in the gap for the Succubi by becoming demons? And that is why Erinyes hate Succubi, and Succubi hate Lilitu! Or stick with the FC1 on Lilitu being formed from a dead Succubus, which I do not agree on because when they die, they are dead, short of a deityís intervention or one HELL of a special ritual, and why would a demon care to exert that kind of energy in the first place?

    Lilitu make sense as being chaotic because of their natural form wavering away from being humanoid with tentacles and hoofed feet. The Succubus does make sense as being similar to a humanoid form and gets my vote as a devil. And Erinyes should never have been cast as a devil in the first place, because they are an exact image of an angel with an angry visage. With Lilitu taking up the reins for demons Malcanthet can stay as Queen of the DEAD Succubi, just add tentacles and hoofed feet!

    There I just created the covey of hags! No wait a minute...Hey, I have a new idea. How about the monster Hags ecology stems from these three....


    Last edited by Gravenhurst on Thu May 08, 2008 9:07 pm; edited 1 time in total
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    Thu May 08, 2008 8:52 pm  
    Re: Eryines are angels too!

    Gravenhurst wrote:
    In Greek mythology Erinyes were angels of vengeance used by the gods to act out punishment on mortals. Translation through the centuries vilified them because some Erinyes were portrayed, like the Furies who tortured corrupted souls in Hades, as evil by association of their deeds. How about elevating Erinyes back to celestial status, because the gods took pity on their own creations who were only doing their bidding. Most lost their way to mortals as devils were seen as a greater evil in need to repent their sins.

    Or, they were used as infiltrators by the gods to save stolen souls by the devils. I would keep the odd Erinye as lawful evil for those still corrupted in hating the weak willed! The celestial Erinye becomes lawful neutral as the gods still want to use them as tools for punishing worshippers who do bad deeds in their gods name?


    Just read up on Angel Excerpts by Wizards, and I am groaning on writing another full page on this topic. But it seems more are up in arms over the changes of demons than angels so I may not have to. It seems my Erinyes of vengeance theme is the same as in 4thE: An angel for all deities who carry out their messages and mete out punishment. So, celestials are slightly on the right track, though I do not want my PC's to battle any angels unless it is from an opposing deity but isn't that what devils are for? So, WotC messes with demons and knowing it would peeve a lot of fans they go to the other side of the fan group and mess with angels! Sheesh! Gotta think about this one now!
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    Thu May 08, 2008 9:02 pm  
    Super long post, lawful minded can read, chaotic minded skip

    The point with demons is this; a line has needed to be drawn with demons and devils for along time ever since Gary Gygax (EGG) was asked about the differences between the two. I personally have placed Grazz't and Lolth as devils because to me their form should represent chaos as they are the embodiment of their alignment. In response to someone earlier saying evil comes first before chaos; well that is new school thinking. Before the separation of alignment in 3.5E (alignments in the creature title were game mechanics for spell & weapon damage reduction) a monster was printed as is, so to me, devils are lawful evil and demons are chaotic evil, equally.

    So! The beautiful Lolth wearing skimpy sheer gauzy gowns should be unkempt in my understanding of chaos! You aren't supposed to get them or understand their demeanour because most don't care what you think because it is their nature to be irrational, sporadic, and unclean because it separates them from being human. Lolthís spider avatar is the best representation of her because it shows what she truly is as a creature (and it doesnít mean she is just a mindless spider) and not as an olve (elf). Do we all forget how Lolth came to be a demon goddess? Her humanity was stripped by Corellon Larethian as punishment for her corruption of some of his olven (elven) children and her olven form is what she once may have looked like before fully enfolding chaos. She uses her form to appease the drow who worship her as they are still olveís not spiders or demons. Can chaos be sexy? Yes but in a depraved way I think. Much like a cracked out junkie with no heed to their life because they are addicted to their fix. Lolth exudes sex and to me it isnít in chaosí profile. Sure you can have all walks of life walk on opposite sides of the fence but for game mechanics it should be cut and dry. It is why demons must polymorph or use illusions to mask their true forms. Leave the line crossing to DMís.

    Not everyone can figure out the complexities of the examples I have pointed out, such as Grazzít or Lolth, or the differences between what is the ideal chaotic or lawful demon image. But if we are being literal on what EGG actually wrote in his novellas or what is printed in the entire monster manuals before 4thE about demons, then it is insanity that drives WotC to make these changes, but I understand why. As I have said there has been no defining line drawn between demons and devils. WotC is now doing that - As crazy as dementals (demon+elemental) seem. But following printed dogma doesnít mean it makes sense, does it? I look at Grazzít as being some kind of elastically-challenged Gumby! That is pretty chaotic in nature, eh! Chaos sophisticating doesnít seem disorderly, does it, or unkempt? In fact, it is a contradiction to the meaning of chaos, but is that the argument for chaos? Do Grazzít and Lolth represent chaos because they are not of the norm? To me it canít so how can they be demons? Devil is more like it. Oh sure there has been printed material on demons being civilized but it doesnít help with defining chaos when they dress better than you or the demon is the hottest looking tail you have seen in the multi-verse. Chaos isnít so bad then right? Wrong. It makes no sense. In a fantasy world of make believe it is easier to get the point across when the stereotype is upheld as the splitting image for what it represents! And, as everyone has pointed out, demons arenít savage bestial fighting machines. Exactly, and that is why WotC has stepped up to the challenge to fix that image. And who can deny that dementals best represent chaos? I wouldnít have used demon as their namesake because it would have been better to have scrapped them totally and just stick with demental as a new race for chaos, like they did for Forgotten Realms with the Dragon Born (donít get me started on how illogical that move has been).

    Another reason on why I support the eradication of traditional demons is from something I learned while questioning posts on a Wizard Community thread: I questioned the plane of Acheronís lawfulness when cubes crashed into one another and degraded into layers of shards of metal and questioned how Grummsh, who is chaotic evil, be battling it out on a lawful plane? It was explained to me that the crashing of the cubes are symbolic of the battles of clashing soldiers. It made sense. Not to continue that past thread here but the colliding cubes are written to be symbolic rather than a literal rule for law, in my interpretation, so I still think that the cubes crashing into one another is not a definition of order for a plane of law but for chaos and so I question its make up. If the cubes floated around in a pattern like meteors in our solar system colliding once in a blue moon then to me that is lawful as they have a path to follow in line with the order of the solar system. Randomness doesnít follow order, in theory, that is.

    Now about Grummsh who is already a greater god: If he can only morph one cube into chaos then why battle to conquer it if the plane of Acheron will remain lawful anyways? Doesnít make sense but thatís chaos for ya! In similar contrast, same thing with demons, you have complexities to describe demons as chaotic but they act another way, and the only defining characteristic is their alignment and the place where they live. How can we figure it all out? WotC has obviously thought the same and it has been an issue brought up in many publishing articles, like DavidBedlamís in his above post. It has finally come to fruition. Letís clean up the complexities and contradictions for a clean slate shall we!?

    If we begin with the modern creation myth on devils as cast down angels from heaven then where exactly have demons spawned from if they arenít devils or angels? There is no beginning background on them (I am sure a Planescaper will correct me on this) as suggested in DavidBedlamís article above, so why do you all have a hard time grasping the fact that demons and devils are pretty much the same creature with different alignments or that they become a devil? It makes total sense in justifying WotC total dismantling of demons from what we know them as but it doesnít mean that we are going to like it because it doesn't fit into our theme of what a demon was before this change. But I find it hard how anyone here can not replace any text presented with the word demon, and omit it or switch it with devil instead! Simple! How will this really impact anything?

    Here are some of my choices in changes that will have to be done: I suggest The Blood War is a war among types of devils (oh Planescapers go easy on me please), such as the tanaríri and the baatezu. The tanaríri are a sub-type of devil and are battling it out for supremacy and - coming from the demon mentality - for the shear joy of battle! So when you come across the word demon it is a tanaríri and everything stays the same but it is referred to as a devil now; When Rao used the Crook he banishes only devils Ė baatezu and tanaríri (Greyhawkerís go easy on me too); Frazíurbíluu, Demogorgon, Orcus, Juiblex, Zuggtmoy, these are embodiments of chaos, so maybe these are the devils corrupted into further depravity by betraying the other race of devils from some eons past something, thus the Blood War; and Grazzít & Lolth in my books become devils Ė baatezu (Canonfire posters go easy on me).

    The frustration I see developing here on this topic is what I posted above. We're all afraid of the drastic change WotC has done with a monster best left alone for the supporters of the demon race in 3.5E. For those wanting to continue with 3.5E or demons for that matter, go and buy up all the old editions you can find or go to Paizo Publishing and be happy in knowing you have a lifetime of unchanged demon stats to play with. Because no matter what we debate here, THE DEMON WE KNOW IT AS, IS GONE! Gone to the maelstrom of the Abyss to be created into a new RAW chaotic elemental form!

    Wassail!!!


    Last edited by Gravenhurst on Fri May 09, 2008 11:00 am; edited 2 times in total
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    Fri May 09, 2008 1:45 am  

    I'd just like to point out that law and chaos is about how one acts, not about how one looks. Lolth most certainly acts chaotic, regardless of whether or not you think a dark elf form is suitable for a chaotic creature.

    Besides, why do you not apply that logic to the Seldarine? Corellon Larethian is every bit as chaotic as Lolth. Why does he not need to be monstrous in form?

    Its not difficult to make demons and devils distinctive in their RP. Even the succubi and erinyes can be made quite different when they are both doing the same thing (seducing and corrupting mortals). Whether you want to or not is another story.

    Anyway, I don't see the new storylines as better or worse than the old. Though the retelling of Satan's fall in D&D is rather tired and unimaginative, if you ask me.

    Btw, what do we gain from having regular evil celestials and cursed evil celestials called devils? The "problem" now is not distinguishing demons from devils (which wasn't a problem, except in a how are they different in a fight sense), but rather in distinguishing evil angels and devils. How are angels of Hextor or Bane (both LE) meaningfully different than devils in behavior? Yeah, I can work that out, but its not any different than working how how demons are different than devils prior to 4e.
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    Fri May 09, 2008 6:37 pm  
    Super long rebuttal for demons, no devils, no demons....

    Quote:
    I'd just like to point out that law and chaos is about how one acts, not about how one looks. Lolth most certainly acts chaotic, regardless of whether or not you think a dark elf form is suitable for a chaotic creature.


    I havenít said that drow couldnít be chaotic evil. How Lolth is presented as a demon is what I been piping about and how one image over the other is a better representer for a chaotic evil monster. As for example, the drider looks like a chaotic evil creature. So having a drow beside a spider, which one looks more menacing? The spider does of course. Put the two together and the creature embodies something frightening and believably chaotic evil, as who in there right mind would allow such a horror to happen to them? And who would do such as an act against someoneís body? As for Lolth's drow form, it isn't convincing as a demon with a chaotic evil alignment. To me it doesn't make sense. If anything, Lolth has represented a devil in nature because of her olven avatar.

    Quote:
    Besides, why do you not apply that logic to the Seldarine? Corellon Larethian is every bit as chaotic as Lolth. Why does he not need to be monstrous in form?


    For game play a standard must be set to distinguish a commonality in monster reference. I am not suggesting that alignment alone should constitute a monstrous form. I suggest that it helps in identifying what is chaotic with demons and lawful with devils, as they are the model example. To begin with, monsters generally are: big, bad, and ugly, and they smell, and they hate, eat, and kill humans. Demons and devils are monsters and fit this bill of traits. Corellon Larethian is a human like being and thus garners a human aspect not a monster aspect and to distinguish a humanís disposition to evil they still look human with an alignment which explains their evil intent. The Olven deity wouldnít best represent chaotic evil because he isnít a monster, even if he was chaotic evil, just as Hextor or Nerull arenít monsters even though their goals are monstrous; We must keep our gods human like to appeal to our senses as real people and to the games mechanics of humans worshipping their own image not a blob of fungus!

    Besides, I am talking about demons having not enough of a difference in becoming their own race in 4thE to justify with doing away with them. Or, I have made suggestions on how best to represent them as a chaotic evil monster to separate them from the devil, which is more humanoid and related to the classic mythical and biblical devil. I reiterate this below.

    Lolth is a special human like being because of four facts: first, she is olve (humanoid); second, she is drow (cursed humanoid); third, a demoness (from where she became corrupted and the source of her power); fourth, a goddess (which, makes everything null and void because she can technically be whatever she wants to be). To me, it supports my idea of Lolth is a spider demon (or as a devil her drow form), but uses her divinity to create her past drow olven form; this is why she walks around as a seductress - a queen luring her suitors into her webs of chaos - but this form best represents a devil in nature. She may act like a humanoid, but she is really a monstrous fiendish spider. This is a better interpretation for her as a demon, but not as a devil (I would like to see a discussion on why or how Lolth became a goddess after being cast out of the olven pantheon? I have never equated her power to a goddess because of this fact. Corellon Larethian would have stripped her of her divinity, lest she uses it for more evil and heíd of blocked any attempt by her in her gaining divinity back. And only through allying with Grazzít (?) from their past fling (?) was Lolth able to become a Demon Prince. And that is where I would keep her as, or rather, a Demon Prince. This also shows a deity losing divinity and gaining it back through worship, I suppose. Because who would have sponsored her to the ranks of divinity?).

    Quote:
    Its not difficult to make demons and devils distinctive in their RP. Even the succubi and erinyes can be made quite different when they are both doing the same thing (seducing and corrupting mortals). Whether you want to or not is another story.


    [RP = role-playing?]

    I agree it isnít difficult, thus my post on suggestions for keeping your beloved demon in 4thE. Isnít this why everyone is having a hard time of letting go of demons in the first place because no one wants to have to make any changes to make them work in 4thE? Or upset period by them becoming a devil! And the demons change screws up everything written for Greyhawk? I mean, there are plenty of reasons to drop the original demon. One reason is devils are reliant on souls to pro-create their race why would demons do the same if they arenít related to the devil? I see how WotC has decided to redefine all of this with keeping it simple.

    Quote:
    Anyway, I don't see the new storylines as better or worse than the old. Though the retelling of Satan's fall in D&D is rather tired and unimaginative, if you ask me.


    I, myself, am not bored with D&Dís biblical connotation of the devils ecology as it hasnít been told in D&D Ė EVER! Only the names of angels, devils, and demons have been connoted to mythical and biblical beginnings and that is where the buck stops. Only Fiendish Codex 2 has any semblance to real religion with hints at a deity (the, God) was defeated by Asmodeous (the, Satan) and it took the whole pantheon of deities (world religions) to cast him and his brethrens down into Hell. And it has been over 15 years since D&D has used the names of angels, devils and demons as freely and unashamedly, as of now. Refreshing for me as it isnít anything but exciting to hear all these names printed aloud on this subject.

    Quote:
    Btw, what do we gain from having regular evil celestials and cursed evil celestials called devils? The "problem" now is not distinguishing demons from devils (which wasn't a problem, except in a how are they different in a fight sense), but rather in distinguishing evil angels and devils. How are angels of Hextor or Bane (both LE) meaningfully different than devils in behavior? Yeah, I can work that out, but its not any different than working how how demons are different than devils prior to 4e.


    I am more concerned dreading the next thread about angelís being available to all gods of all alignments! Will there be evil angels, I hope not. They probably will be lawful neutral more than likely. In fact, when I heard the news about the succubus and Erinyes shuffle I suggested for the Outer Planes to reinstate them as an angel of vengeance; they mete out punishment for the gods. I suggested this way back on Wizard Community I think. Funny how my mind works like WotC, eh! It ainít over yet. I thought Iíd be done with 4thE discussion after this thread, but this topic will be as important to me as this thread is. So I will be around for one more round!
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    Sat May 10, 2008 2:16 am  

    To be honest, your views on monster appearance and what makes something a demon or a devil are so different from mine that I'm having a hard time grasping what you are saying. So I think I'm just going to drop the discussion. Suffice it to say, I don't think something needs to look monstrous if it is a monster. I don't think Lolth the drow and Grazzt are less demonic because they look presentable. I don't think that chaotic evil is less able to be seductive/corruptive than lawful evil.

    As for angels, they've put out the article on that. Angels are of any alignment. Both Heironeous and Hextor have angels of valor fighting for them, differing only in their choice of loyalties. So there are evil angels as well as devils. And demons.

    Also, I'd like to point out that Lolth didn't start out as an elf in Greyhawk. That story applies to the Forgotten Realms. She was always a demonlord in Greyhawk lore... she is also counted as a lesser deity because all demonlords in 1e were. Yeenoghu, Orcus, Demogorgon, Zuggtmoy, etc. The story of Araushnee is something like 10 or 15 years more recent than Lolth herself. That's not really a big deal, but it does make arguing that Lolth is an exception because of her origin a bit tricky.
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    Sat May 10, 2008 9:29 am  
    Don't go anywhere yet!

    Remember me telling you I can get long winded in my discussions! Iíll work on editing my last two posts if Iím losing peeps!

    Keeping it simple, I have given a few reasons on how demons can be misconstrued as a devil (we already know that they are similar), which I posed why WotC has conglomerated the two fiends together. And a few of my arguments for their reasoning is that the human side is more befitting as a devil (which WotC has said), while a monstrous approach for demons (in my opinion) may have saved them from being barred from 4thE along with an origin (e.g. Lolth is better understood as chaotic evil in her spider form as a demon, while her humanoid form is best for lawful evil in her drow form as a devil, and as a goddess it doesnít matter because a deity can be whatever they want to be as long as the DM is consistent with the imagery of what best represents her, or any deity for that matter).

    Now what I would like to know is: are the demons changed into a devil having their alignment changed to lawful evil, or are some staying chaotic evil but still labelled as a devil, like I have thought up?

    You are right about the 1stE point. If Lolth has always been a Demoness in Greyhawk then it supports my view that a monstrous appearance best suits her as a demon then, and her drow form is what she uses to lure the olve to appeal to her. See, why havenít you said this before? Sheesh! What sources, by the way, support the Greyhawk story of Lolth first being a demon and not a drow? In TSR Deities & Demigods, 1980, it doesnít go into any detail except how the drow worshipped her as a demon. So the elves called drow were already a darkened sub-type? I havenít read this book in years! So in Greyhawkís version of Lolth, is she still that incarnation? Or has the Corellon Larethian casting her out from the Seldarine version been adopted as an explanation to her origin? Tricky is right! Intriguing!
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    Sat May 10, 2008 2:06 pm  

    The 4e alignment system doesn't particularly support designations such as Lawful Evil and Chaotic Evil. Alignment is, in fact, largely irrelevant from what has been revealed. Both 4e demons and devils are simply 'evil', I believe. Devils in 4e are rebellious angels and exist in an intense heirarchy devoted to the now godly leader of their rebellion. Demons, on the other hand, are corrupt manifestations of the elemental chaos. So I think it is pretty clear that those demons now made into devils are now creatures of Lawful Evil if that term still had meaning.

    Ice devils are, I believe, demons forced to serve the devils in 4e. This is quite distinct from a creature like the succubus that was a demon in 1-3e, but is now a devil. The succubus has no association with chaos at all.

    Regarding Lolth in Greyhawk the source material is both the original Dieties and Demigods and her entries in modules such as Vault of the Drow and Queen of the Demonweb Pits. Nothing about the Araushnee tale contradicts anything given in Greyhawk about Lolth per se, because most of that early history is simply undefined. But its quite clear that Lolth was envisioned as a demoness who gained a large number of drow followers. She is not a leader of any sort of drow pantheon, however. THe drow in those entries are explicitly said to worship a variety of demonlords, with Lolth having the most support. Unlike the FR Lolth, she also has human and male (and human male!) priests, for instance. Lareth the Beautiful being the best known example (From the Temple of Elemental Evil series).

    I'm not sure if the idea of the drow being elves born of Corellon's blood tainted by Lolth's as per the D&DG book is actually "fact" in any particular campaign world. Its hard to say because Corellon Larethian and the Seldarine were created after the World of Greyhawk and retconned in via Dragon Magazine. (Ehlonna of the Forest was the chief elf god until those Dragon articles were written; IIRC, the first mention of any Seldarine god in a GH supplement didn't come until 2e with From the Ashes and the Players' Guide).

    There is no official story of how the elves and drow split for Greyhawk. But the Araushnee tale has never been associated with Greyhawk in any official publication I am aware of.
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    Mon May 12, 2008 9:47 am  
    I Lolth a demon first or a god first?

    Vormaerin wrote:
    The 4e alignment system doesn't particularly support designations such as Lawful Evil and Chaotic Evil. Alignment is, in fact, largely irrelevant from what has been revealed. Both 4e demons and devils are simply 'evil', I believe.


    Interesting! I hadn't read that yet! Someone had mentioned on En World I think, about 4thE is turning out much like Fantasy Warhammer, which uses only 5 alignments: lawful, chaotic, neutral, good, evil.

    Quote:
    Devils in 4e are rebellious angels and exist in an intense hierarchy devoted to the new godly leader of their rebellion.... [omitted] So I think it is pretty clear that those demons now made into devils are now creatures of Lawful Evil if that term still had meaning.


    I am not following 4thE for anything canon, let alone DM it. I may play it for someone dying for players to play test it, but I will not be DM'ing it. I will see if I find something interesting to use for something undefined, like Grazz't say, about why is he black like a drow but not a drow, much like Lolth, for an example. And if he is a demon and not a drow then what is his "monstrous appearance"! Possibly then, will I buy a download on the material I want. Considering Paizo Publishing as the primary developer of 3.5E now, I doubt I will support WotC anymore. Unless they keep putting out material like in their free Dragon & Dungeon ezine's, as they have from Elder & Exemplar's of Evil material about Tharizdun. Top rated in my tastes.

    Quote:
    Ice devils are, I believe, demons forced to serve the devils in 4e. This is quite distinct from a creature like the succubus that was a demon in 1-3e, but is now a devil.


    I have never classed ice devils as a devil either, because of my "monstrous appearance" game approaches. They seemed more alien in nature than humanoid, thus yugoloth fits the bill, as they are doing - I think - in 4thE. I have also envisioned them as another race like the Gith and Illithidís from the solar system not the planar cosmology who belong to no god or supreme being. The Yugoloth's to me are like the little green men theory, from space. In the module A Paladin In Hell the setting takes place in Stygia and the ice devils are the main resident. I still didn't picture them there, as the standard devil can resist the element damage, so maybe tint them blue or give them white highlights to showcase their relation to the layer, for visual effect, is how I imagined them. The standard devil would still be all fiery from brimstone as the layer is supposed to be a place of Hell to torment souls and not just to appease the reader of the material with an exotic location to use.

    If ice devils are devils then I would place them into the control of Baalzebul (Spelling from 3.0E MotP. I always thought it was spelled Beelzebub?) and create more off spring of insectoid devils.

    Quote:
    Nothing about the Araushnee tale contradicts anything given in Greyhawk about Lolth per se, because most of that early history is simply undefined. But itís quite clear that Lolth was envisioned as a demoness who gained a large number of drow followers. She is not a leader of any sort of drow pantheon, however. The drow in those entries are explicitly said to worship a variety of demon lords, with Lolth having the most support. Unlike the FR Lolth, she also has human and male (and human male!) priests, for instance. Lareth the Beautiful being the best known example (From the Temple of Elemental Evil series).


    If this is true, then all the posters who have been using Lolth as an example could use my suggestion on "monstrous appearance" to better support their argument on keeping her as a demon. She is a demon because of her spider form and her drow form is only an illusion for the worshipperís sake, thus she isn't similar to a devilís human appearance! I would even support this point! This is an example of how WotC should have approached demons only they were set in creating a new race that they believe is best represented as chaotic evil. WotC should have left original demons out and created a new name for the chaotic evil monsters like dementals. Also, in case someone wanted to reuse the original demon to make better sense of them, it would be easier to reintroduce them as demons. Now they can't do that as long as the dementals still exist!

    So what is the Greyhawk story on the drow becoming drow? What was Gary Gygax thinking when he created them? I like the story of Corellon Larethian cursing one family of elves into drow as punishment for worshipping demons. And if the other drow deities are demon lords who or what are they? Could Grazz't be one? In 1stE there weren't other drow demon lords/deities, only Lolth. I for one have never believed in a pantheon of drow and that is when I started to lose interest in FR because it started to get a little away from the continuity of fantasy mechanics and were giving in to creating alignment or creature fillers for gamers, but they are choices for everyone to choose from. If anything, I may have used the other drow deities as demons, maybe Yochols masking themselves as drow, or the drow are elevated proxies by Lolthís divine power?

    Quote:
    I'm not sure if the idea of the drow being elves born of Corellon's blood tainted by Lolth's as per the D&DG book is actually "fact" in any particular campaign world. Its hard to say because Corellon Larethian and the Seldarine were created after the World of Greyhawk and ret conned in via Dragon Magazine. (Ehlonna of the Forest was the chief elf god until those Dragon articles were written; IIRC, the first mention of any Seldarine god in a GH supplement didn't come until 2e with From the Ashes and the Players' Guide). There is no official story of how the elves and drow split for Greyhawk. But the Araushnee tale has never been associated with Greyhawk in any official publication I am aware of.


    Sticking with primary source books first before campaign setting source material, Lolth was printed in Deities & Demigods before the World of Greyhawk campaign as a Non-Human D&D goddess not specifically as a Greyhawk demoness until the Queen of the Demonweb Pits isnít she? In all Greyhawk source books I still do not see Lolth written anywhere unless it is in a module source, but then again I do not have all Greyhawk material (pretty darn close though). I canít recall her even in the Gord novellas. So how has she been represented in Greyhawk alone as the demon goddess instead of an elven goddess? It is the reason why I followed the Forgotten Realms origin of Lolth because it helped flesh her out better than just her manipulations in the Demonweb series. What is the Canonfire census on Lolthís status?

    The Ehlonna reference is amazing. I have always thought of Ehlonna as a new deity as I havenít used Greyhawk as my main game world I have missed this point until buying up vintage Greyhawk! I had finally got my hands on the World of Greyhawk box setting and Corellon Larethian isnít in it! It is weird. I have to rethink my own campaign world beginnings now! Wow! I havenít been able to read up on everything that is why Canonfire has been a godsend for updating me on Greyhawk canon.
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    Mon May 12, 2008 7:26 pm  
    Re: I Lolth a demon first or a god first?

    Gravenhurst wrote:

    So what is the Greyhawk story on the drow becoming drow? What was Gary Gygax thinking when he created them?


    Vault of the Drow, Gary Gygax, 1978, "Ages past, when the elvenfolk were but new to the face of the earth, their number was torn by discord, and those of better disposition drove from them those of the elves who were selfish and cruel. However, constant warfare between the two divisions of elvenkind continuied, with the goodly ones ever victorious, until those of dark nature were forced to withdraw from the lands under the skies and seek safety in the realm of the underworld."
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    Tue May 13, 2008 5:19 pm  

    Lolth was introduced in the D-series, which came out before Dieties and Demigods, for one thing (not sure if she's in Gods, Demigods, and Heroes). In fact, she was printed as a demoness in the Fiend Folio first. That book came out the year before Deities and Demigods. And she was explicitly a demon lord in both the D series and her Fiend Folio entry.

    Further, the Non human deities section of the original Deities and Demigods explicitly lists Demogorgon, Juiblex, Orcus, Yeenoghu, Bahamut, Tiamat, Asmodeus, Baalzebul, Dispater, Geryon, the Elemental Princes of Evil, and the two Slaad Lords as beings that should be treated as lesser gods. So there is nothing particularly special about Lolth in that regards, except she got an entry on top of it.

    And that entry starts with "The dark elves worship demon lords from the Abyss. The best known example is the worship of the Demon Queen Lolth."

    Under the Corellon Larethian entry is simply states: "The god is also mighty in battle and is said to have personally banished such demons as Lolth from the sunlit upper world."

    Lolth doesn't get mentioned in the GH gods lists any more than the other great demon lords and archdevils do. She obviously plays a central role in the GDQ series and is also a minor player in the T series.

    And yes, Graz'zt is generally considered one of the other demon gods that the Drow worship.
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    Tue May 13, 2008 5:37 pm  

    The other thing you might be overlooking is that the adventure modules were in effect the sourcebooks for Greyhawk during the 1st edition era. The Folio and the later boxed set campaign setting and the Greyhawk Adventures Hardback were the only things published for Greyhawk.

    The rest of the development was in the modules and in Dragon Magazine. It wasn't until 2e that they put out things like The Marklands, Iuz the Evil, etc. So discounting the non sourcebooks in Greyhawk's case is rather problematic from a lore perspective.

    I believe that the 4e version of Ice Devils are demons bound to Baalzebul. Regarding alternative spellings, Beelzebub is a later term and mostly mocking. "Baal" is a Canaanite word meaning Lord or God. There were a lot of "Baals". Baal Zebub means either "Lord of the High Places" or Lord of Zebub (assuming there was a place called that that we don't know about. He was the city god of Ekron, a Philistine community and is mentioned in the Kings or one of the other "history" books of the Bible.

    Beelzebul and Beelzebub show up as demons in various Christian sources and are quite likely transliteration errors more than anything else.
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    Wed May 14, 2008 9:05 am  

    Yes I see the entry in Fiend Folio. How could I have forgotten her bulbous art photo! Confused

    I agree that the 1E were considered the main source on the World of Greyhawk, I just wondered if the newer boxed sets and newer editions sodlidified printed canon, say, from the 1E modules! I have begun to repurchase vintage modules so I haven't read them for update on lore. I had many vintage before but I had cut most of them up for the art work to be used for NPC and PC profiles! Shocked

    sO, i AM GLAD THAT lOLTH WAS ORIGINALLY A DEMON FIRST. iT FITS BETTER INTO MY WON CAMPAIGN STORYLINES.

    Now the Corellon Larethian (Any relation to Lareth the Beautiful, by the way? I have wondered about this!) story mentions Lolth was cast out as a demon, and not as a elven godess? Can you point me to what book describes this please! I may have it but need to read more closely! Thanks Exclamation
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    Wed May 14, 2008 6:57 pm  

    The quote I gave you is from the original printing of Deities and Demigods in 1980. The one with the Melnibonean and Cthulhu Mythos still in it. I never bothered with later editions, so I don't know if the story changed there.

    Lareth the Beautiful is not related to Corellon Larethian at all. He was a human priest of Lolth who was attempting to infiltrate the Temple of Elemental Evil so as to disrupt/suborn the plans of Lolth's rival Zuggtmoy.

    The newer Greyhawk sourcebooks do draw somewhat on the modules, but largely cover different ground. The general concept of the Greyhawk modules is that the adventure areas are pretty much in the back of beyond or, at least, in some godforsaken spot of land. There are a few exceptions.... mainly Greyhawk Castle and, perhaps, the Village of Hommlet. While the later supplements largely covered the mainstays of civilization (Furyondy, Nyrond) and their foes (Great Kingdom, Iuz). There's only a little overlap.

    Where there is overlap, such as the Slavers! sourcebook compared to the A series or Liberation of Geoff compared to the G series, there tends to be mass revisionism and conflicting information.
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    Thu May 15, 2008 12:44 am  

    If it looks like a god and barks like a god, it is a god.

    I prefer Lolth as a deity who fled to the Abyss as it gives us plausible explanations for both theories. I think all demon lords and arch devils should be about on par with demi-gods in any event. If they are worshipped and have clerics then they are for all intents an purposes, a god, regardless of what their 'biological origins' might be.

    It isn't clear what comes first - the demon or the god - but with Epic Destinies it could be either.

    I'm currently stitching together the conflicting information from various sources for my home-made gazeteer. Most information isn't overtly contradictory and can easily be put down to poor map-making on the part of the Carogrpahers' Guild and drunken sessions at the Sgacious Society.
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    Thu May 15, 2008 7:03 am  

    Vormaerin wrote:
    Lolth was introduced in the D-series, which came out before Dieties and Demigods, for one thing (not sure if she's in Gods, Demigods, and Heroes).


    She's not.

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    Thu May 15, 2008 8:40 am  
    Shuffling from main thread, oh my!

    I tend to have my posts stray from the main thread. And here we are shuffling away from 4thE demons into devils.

    Should I be starting a new thread for this topic as it seems there is much that can build from it?

    I too have been trying to compile a gazetteer of sorts for my own campaign and this topic has been an eye-sore for me for quite some time. Not only about Lolth but Grazz't too, and other's, like Incabulous being a fiend from Hades being released into the Suel lands from the Invoked Devastation (not that it is canon but interesting theory on the origin of the power used in that cataclysm) and becoming a god on Flanaess or was it a god before hand, or a demon on Hades?

    Again, it looks as I should start a new thread on this subject as it is indirectly straying from the "4thE shuffling demons and devils" thread to an actual good discussion on the Demon Princes or Devil Lords being demons first before becoming a deity or only a demon, or only a god. I can agree on the Princes and Lords being at a quasi level to showcase the power that they can wield, but I believe that divinity should be kept only for the originators of divinity, but again this is straying from the thread. Greyhawk is using the default Nature of Religions and Nature of Divinity from 3.0E Deities & Demigods so demon lords and devil princes can not start as a god, but becoming one is another story. Demons use cults to create evil beings to create food for them, while devils create cults to create souls for them (that is what the whole devil make up is from the biblical story). And demons...well...the debate is still going on.

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    Thu May 15, 2008 4:16 pm  
    Re: Shuffling from main thread, oh my!

    Gravenhurst wrote:
    Greyhawk is using the default Nature of Religions and Nature of Divinity from 3.0E Deities & Demigods so demon lords and devil princes can not start as a god, but becoming one is another story.


    I'd just like to point out that this is completely false on an objective level. Greyhawk was designed to function within the 1st edition rules, not the 3e rules. While any rules can be used with Greyhawk (they don't even have to be D&D), you can't make a valid argument that rules written 20 years after the campaign setting was produced are "the way things are."

    The campaign material... at least the material produced for the first 10 years of the campaign's existance... includes the assumption that all demon lords and archdevils are functionally equivalent to lesser gods (and lesser gods before the advent of "intermediate gods" for that matter).

    The Demonlords like Zuggtmoy, Demogorgon, Yeenoghu, Orcus, Lolth, etc are fully capable of granting clerical spells and powers to their followers the same as any god. There are many adventures published in which this is a core assumption. Temple of Elemental Evil and Vault of the Drow for the big ones, plus many many smaller ones (such as Dungeon magazine ones).

    You can certainly have a background story about how gods are of a different nature than Demonlords... that's easy. In fact, it should almost be assumed. But the step from that to 3e's Divine Might rankings that put the gods head and shoulders above the demon lords in power and ability is substantial and contrary to Greyhawk's assumptions.

    Heironeous is not kicking Demogorgon's butt at will, because Heironeous is simply not more powerful than Demogorgon in the way a bunch of extra divine might would indicate. The Forgotten Realms is a very good example of a campaign world designed in line with the 2e/3e model of gods (though the first FR boxed set did come out a bit before 2e). The demonlords are basically irrelevant... its all about the evil gods and their followers because they totally outclass the demonlords. In Greyhawk, it was almost always about the demonlords as megavillians rather than the evil gods. That's been diluted recently with the "everything is really Tharizdun" fetish but that's clearly revisionist.

    (And no, I am not denying anyone the right to do whatever the frick they want in their campaign, just pointing out a limit of argument by authority in this case).
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    Fri May 16, 2008 4:24 am  

    In fairness, many lesser gods had slightly more hp than many demon lords in 1e plus a number of divine magical abilities. If the god had 17+ levels of fighter they would have had better attack rolls, if they had spell-casting classes they would have had access to a whole load of spells etc. So the gods had a slight edge over the demon lords. Greater gods had even more powers and up to double the hp of the most powerful demons and devils (Lolth originally only had 66hp but had the maximum AC it was possible to have while in spider form or spell-casting powers in drow form).

    So yes, demon lords were slightly underpowered to keep them scheming instead of smiting but they were not gods and thus could interfere on the Prime Material when the 'real' gods could not.

    I agree that I don't really want them to be gods per se, I've always been happy with the distinction even if they are treated as gods in everything but name. Lolth will always be a demon queen to me Wink
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    Fri May 16, 2008 11:39 am  
    Re: Shuffling from main thread, oh my!

    Quote:
    I'd just like to point out that this is completely false on an objective level. Greyhawk was designed to function within the 1st edition rules, not the 3e rules. While any rules can be used with Greyhawk (they don't even have to be D&D), you can't make a valid argument that rules written 20 years after the campaign setting was produced are "the way things are."


    Do you and most Greyhawk/Canonfire fans use Demon Princes and Devil Lords as lesser deities? And all material, including published products in 2ndE defer to them as deities and not just an epic demon or devil llike in 3E? What is the sensus on this? have fans kept demons as lesser gods or changed them to follow the 3E rules?

    Quote:
    The campaign material... at least the material produced for the first 10 years of the campaign's existance... includes the assumption that all demon lords and archdevils are functionally equivalent to lesser gods (and lesser gods before the advent of "intermediate gods" for that matter).


    Sorry, I bow down to 1stE canon, it is hard to keep within the context of Greyhawks humble beginings when so much more has been developed apart from Greyhawk - I am more familiar with non-Greyhawk, I will admit - with continuity. And of course my personal view keeps blending with facts and personal tastes on how or why I like certain things about WoG, such as I keep mentioning about Lolth only being a demoness and not a goddess because I have used 3E as my choice of her origin history. And I haven't seperated the two views at times, like I did know about Demon Princes and Devil Lords were lesser gods in 1stE but I keep refering to 3E.

    This thread has opened up more to my own personal delimma about the demons origin (Lolth is just a facet of that debate) than with the 4thE approach of melding demons into devils but keeping demons as a devil sub-type idea. I still agree on doing away with demons compared to devils as the cast out race from heaven idea, but now I see the value in the demon's heritage with in Greyhawk's lore. But, as I have suggested way's of changing demons to a more monstrous approach to represent chaotic evil, I will continue to remake demon's image befitting to my own idea of what best represents chaos. And it seems that Greyhawk has always been that way with demons, even with Lolth!

    In sticking with origins in 1stE I think I will be keeping the demon Princes as quasi rank (not lesser) but with no divinity to enable worshippers with spells from worshipping. As I believe in keeping dieties closer to the biblical or mythical story line. And I have contemplated in doing away with evil deities for typical races as I have believed they don't fit the profile to best representing evil at its best; only devils and demons exemplify true evil at their core in my world. Deities are best left to support an evil idea than the embodiment of evil, so Demon Princes and Devil Lords should already be of a quasi rank, if mortals are able to achieve the same rank!
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    Fri May 16, 2008 2:19 pm  
    Re: Shuffling from main thread, oh my!

    Gravenhurst wrote:
    Quote:
    Do you and most Greyhawk/Canonfire fans use Demon Princes and Devil Lords as lesser deities? And all material, including published products in 2ndE defer to them as deities and not just an epic demon or devil llike in 3E? What is the sensus on this? have fans kept demons as lesser gods or changed them to follow the 3E rules?


    For what it is worth, I have demonic cults in various places of Greyhawk. I think it fits in better with the 1st edition feel which is what I strive for though I use 3.5 rules. I don't have very many cults but do give them to some of the more powerful individuals who were more well known and feared around the gaming table when I first started playing, such as Demogorgon and Asmodeus. There are a few others in which I would have human cults but perhaps only another 3-4 demons and devils. Sprinkled throughout Greyhawk material from 1st through 3.5 are Greyhawk references to demonic cults anyway.

    The demons/devils who have worshippers receive the abilties within their monster descriptions, nothing more. I don't give them any kind of divine abilities such as those found in Deities and Demigods. I will access Dragon magazine articles that are more recent and offer good insights on the creature. The worshippers themselves do not have any spells unless I decide that they are granted through an actual evil deity. They do not come from the demon or devil. These spells which would be very rare would come from an arrangement between the deity and the demonic force in question (much like the Return to the Elemental Evil module presentation). The clerics believe they get the spells from the demon/devil as do the cult members. The only ones in the true know, are the demonic force and the deity involved. Essentially, the demonic force gets the exposure their looking for and the deity gets something from the demonic force. I haven't worried about what they get until it comes up in a plot for the game. I'll cross that bridge when I get there.
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    Fri May 16, 2008 7:59 pm  

    I use demonic and diabloc cults as well, and they have alwys been able to be granted spells from their patrons since I began making use o them in 1e. I have basically ignored any text that stated arch-devils or demonlords couldn't grant spells to their followers, or that those spells really came from other evil deities(which I think is 100% lame).
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    Fri May 16, 2008 9:06 pm  

    Cebrion said:
    Quote:
    I have basically ignored any text that stated arch-devils or demonlords couldn't grant spells to their followers, or that those spells really came from other evil deities(which I think is 100% lame).


    Ouch Cebrion, guess I'm lame. Oh well.Happy Your solution is good, simple and direct. Exactly how the spells were derived really wasn't an issue for me at this time, having the cult exist was. When the times comes (if it ever does) that a defined reasoning needs to be provided I shall choose to put more thought into it.
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    Fri May 16, 2008 10:22 pm  

    Eileen, I think he meant the fudge that 3e used saying that Erythnul was granting Yeenoghu's gnoll clerics their spells in exchange for unspecified favors was 100% lame. Not simply using the thralls of concept instead of clerics or them not having clerics at all. That's fine, its just different than the original conception.

    Pauln6,

    I can't say that the actual stats of the demonlords or the gods ever actually mattered in my campaign. I wouldn't be surprised if plenty of gods were statted out tougher than the demonlords in the MM. I was just saying that the two groups were in the same general league. Like elves and humans are in the same general league as a whole.

    Gravenhurst,

    The material does not refer to them as deities. But it does have clerics of the demon lords and so on, which is the only important distinction between demon lords and gods in mechanical terms unless you are big into epic play. In the Queen of the Demonweb Pits, it mentions that Lolth also has a variety of divine powers that the DM could have her use but doing so would pretty much make the adventure a suicide mission. Zuggtmoy doesn't have her full range of powers when she's released from the Temple of Elemental Evil and isn't statted with all the god powers.


    If you want to approach things with a more typical polytheistic pantheon and their enemies system with the gods on one side and the demons (and/or devils) on the other side, I can give you some suggestions on that score. There are perfectly valid uses for evil deities who oppose the hordes of the abyss.
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    Fri May 16, 2008 10:32 pm  

    Vomorian wrote:
    Quote:
    Eileen, I think he meant the fudge that 3e used saying that Erythnul was granting Yeenoghu's gnoll clerics their spells in exchange for unspecified favors was 100% lame. Not simply using the thralls of concept instead of clerics or them not having clerics at all. That's fine, its just different than the original conception.


    It's ok, if I had been upset I wouldn't have left a smilie. Cebrion's pretty straight forward and blunt (which is ok) sometimes it makes interpretation difficult for me. No big deal. I only cried for 3 hours, went through 4 boxes of tissues, called up 6 friends, broke off my engagement, and drove the car in the ditch, so really, it wasn't all that bad of day for me. Happy
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    Wed Jul 23, 2008 3:39 pm  

    Let's not be blind to what I think is really going on here and that is that WotC knows no bounds when it comes to trying to bastardize and change D&D into a concept that THEY own. They screw with story telling aspects of D&D in 4E by taking out any real spells that do something other then crush your foe under you heel. That is narrow minded as the most potent tools for taking care of your enemy is subversion and deciet, a concept foriegn to the developers now making the D&D product. This is all an attempt to make obsolete all previous content so you have to go out and get new source books, as the old ones no longer carry any grain of authority. And more over they are trying to distance themselves and more importantly us from the old and bring us into the "next gen" of gaming. I, myself, am not going without a fight.


    I have spent a good deal of time flushing out the relationships of the outer planes and how they interact with Oerth and honestly made some very solid concecpts and plausible story lines. The original idea of Demons and Devils, according to my extensive research, is very well done if you just use what is available to gel things together. The Primordials Lords created the Tanar'ri, better known as Demons, so they had tools to do their work in the universe as they continued to do their work, but they were flawed, as they did not follow plans and they were prone to discension and in fighting as chaotic evil beings. The Primordials again being preoccupied with their work created angels. The angels were frighteningly affective at killing the demons and in order to become more efficient even still they took on some of the demons characteristics to better combat them. The Primordials did not like the fact that some of the angels willingly took on demonic power and the ones that did were tainted with evil. Asmodeus the most powerful of the angels becoming more and more like demons, claimed that he and his minions did what was expected of them according to the letter of the law. The Primordials gave them Baator begrudgling as it was promised that the angels would gain a land of their own for their service. So the Primordials cast Asmodeus and his minions into Baator, both as their pact demanded and as punishment for tainting their blood line with evil, making him and his minions fallen angels known as Baatezu. Not too much confusion in here and the bulk of this is from Wikipedia and my studies from various other previous readings. It seems to me to be an adequately developed background for said beings and I see no need to modify it from this cosmology. It is, as I said before, WotC trying to nudge out old school principles in order to make their game version more visiable and viable. They are threatened by old tenants as they can not operate on the depth as did many of the earlier developers and mass produce product to pawn off on "next gen gamers". I am not completely sure that "next gen" gamers are interested in story telling. Maybe we are old dinosaurs and the consumer these days just want a glorified Risk/WoW hybrid. They are using "talent" trees, Locks, etc etc. I am an avid D&D gamer and I am almost as loyal to the namesake D&D as I am to Greyhawk but I am quickly discovering that the two are no longer synonomous. I really did want to give 4E a chance but I may be forced to go back to earlier versions where the story is more important then the fight.
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