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    Canonfire :: View topic - Murlynd (and all the spelling manifestations)
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    Murlynd (and all the spelling manifestations)
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    Apprentice Greytalker

    Joined: Sep 08, 2005
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    Fri Dec 16, 2005 12:02 pm  
    Murlynd (and all the spelling manifestations)

    I was wondering what time frame Murlynd came from, what period of the Old West. With the six guns, I’m assuming 1870s-1890s, but he could be a pre-War Texas Ranger. Also, does anyone know where he came from before that- why did he go out west?

    Plausible scenarios:
    - he was a Confederate soldier, who lost everything to the Union Army…
    - he was a Union soldier, who lost everything to Confederate guerillas/bushwhackers (MO/KS/KY, or parts of PA/MD)…
    - he was born Out West…
    - no reason, he just moved out West…

    …and somehow got to Oerth.
    Grandmaster Greytalker

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    Fri Dec 16, 2005 12:31 pm  

    I am not an expert on Murlynd, but I seem to recall he is not from earth, but is an Oeridian from Oerth. On top of that, I personally favor not rejecting from his character the material found in the module dungeonland or beyond the magic mirror, which ever one it was in which he was first introduced without any reference to cowboys. I think in there he was an gentleman doctor, although not physicaly present. Until I see it otherwise, and even then, my opinion is that he was a wizard who got into dimension travel pick up various object and personality traits untimately settling in as a paladin cowboy.
    GreySage

    Joined: Aug 03, 2001
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    Fri Dec 16, 2005 1:01 pm  

    Murlynd was Don Kaye's magic-user PC. Originally he had no paladin levels (dual-class paladin/magic-users were against the rules), though I suspect the "wild west" aspect was part of the original campaign. Later on, when he was reinterpreted by Gary Gygax as a quasi-deity, he gained the ability (as all gods and near-gods had) to ignore dual-classing restrictions.

    I'm of the opinion that he originated in Oerth and later on ended up (probably through some portal in a dungeon) in the world described by the Boot Hill RPG that TSR used to publish. He returned to Oerth later on as an experienced planar traveler with strange powers and abilities.

    Officially, he was a paladin of Heironeous. For this reason, I favor him originating as a paladin on Oerth (despite the origin of the PC he is based on) and learning the alien (technological) magic of the world he ended up on to get back. This explains why his approach to magic is so different from standard D&D wizards. If he became a paladin on Earth he would probably have had to have been a Christian or Jew, rather than a Heironean.
    Grandmaster Greytalker

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    Fri Dec 16, 2005 1:50 pm  

    ragson: "I suspect the "wild west" aspect was part of the original campaign."

    Just off the top of my head, there was a reference to guns and other technology in the old module, but I do not remember anything about cowboys. That made think that the cowboy part was a later addition. I could very well be completely wrong.

    ragson: "If he became a paladin on Earth he would probably have had to have been a Christian or Jew, rather than a Heironean."

    I was thinking he became a cowboy on earth, something like the lone ranger, which he transferred into being a paladin after leaving earth. But now that I am thinking about it, in the old module there are some descriptions of his earthly titles, Dr. plus others. At least one of them made me think he might have been a member of a knightly or secret order. I have meant to look into that, but never go around to it.
    GreySage

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    Fri Dec 16, 2005 3:48 pm  

    Wolfsire wrote:
    Just off the top of my head, there was a reference to guns and other technology in the old module, but I do not remember anything about cowboys. That made think that the cowboy part was a later addition. I could very well be completely wrong.


    There are some Indian arrowheads, and some Western-themed novels, but there's no great emphasis on the Old West, no.

    Quote:
    I was thinking he became a cowboy on earth, something like the lone ranger, which he transferred into being a paladin after leaving earth.


    Why would he change his "lone ranger" levels to paladin levels when he doesn't bother to change his "technowizard" levels to standard wizard levels? He seems to relish being different too much to bother to change.

    Quote:
    But now that I am thinking about it, in the old module there are some descriptions of his earthly titles, Dr. plus others. .


    "DR. D.R. MURLYND, F.K.O., M.L.G.T.S.A”

    This was answered in O.J. #12.

    Q: In module EX1 Dungeonland you have the “shingle” for
    Murlynd’s home as “DR. MURLYND, F.K.O., M.L.G.T.S.A.”
    What do those degrees or titles translate to? (My guess is
    Former Knight Oerth, Member Lake Geneva Tactical Studies Association)


    A: Fellow of the Khans of the Orient (our local SAC for a time), and
    you are on target with the rest.
    Grandmaster Greytalker

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    Fri Dec 16, 2005 4:14 pm  

    That is great what you found OJ 12. Was not there some reference to him also being color bind?
    Apprentice Greytalker

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    Sat Dec 17, 2005 2:32 am  

    Wolfsire wrote:
    That is great what you found OJ 12. Was not there some reference to him also being color bind?


    I think that that is mentioned during the discussion of his odd approach to magic in his stats from the 1983 boxed set. It goes something like this (with apologies for inaccuracy; I do not have my books with me):

    "Because he is insensitive to color differences, Murlynd's color-based spells are highly unusual, and often involve conjured engines and devices that summon the necessary hues."
    Novice

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    Sat Dec 17, 2005 3:28 am  
    Murlynd and Pistols

    I know Murlynd is an old PC, but I always assumed his presentation in The Land Beyond Magic Mirror was additionally based on the wizard Merlin. Merlin lived life backwards--he knew the future, but not the past. Thus, the futuristic things from our world such as pistols, western novels, and gaming miniatures.
    Master Greytalker

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    Tue Dec 20, 2005 11:48 pm  

    Rasgon writes:
    There are some Indian arrowheads, and some Western-themed novels, but there's no great emphasis on the Old West, no.


    Not in Beyond the Magic Mirror, no. But his description in WOGG p. 35 says
    "His broad, muscular frame is typically clad in garments of another time and world, that of the "Old West"." His guns are called 45's, six-shooters, and hog legs.

    Given that he can be found in the company of Heironeous, I assume he was a paladin of that god.

    Given that one of his libraries contains Victorian pornography, I assumed for my campaign that he was a paladin who fell from grace due to temptations of the flesh. Thanks to his high intelligence, he started over as a magic-user.

    Since Hiero is mostly concerned with martial virtue, M's transgressions were eventually atoned for and his paladin powers were reinstated.
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    Master Greytalker

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    Wed Dec 21, 2005 12:12 am  

    As far as when M visited the Old West, that is hard to say. The earliest technology is his revolvers - invented 1836. The house is "late Victorian", but it does not have gas lamps - it has electric lights. He has postage stamps through 1953, and a VCR! However, he has a phonograph, rather than a CD player or MP3. (The module was published in 1983). So it seems that he visited Earth as early as the 1840's, but that he has continued to visit snce then. If you assume a one to one time passing for earth and oerth, you could set 1983 to 573 and work backwards, working in some reference to Zagig to get an early CY date and seeing if that put you anywhere in the 1800s.
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    Grandmaster Greytalker

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    Wed Dec 21, 2005 8:56 am  

    Kirt wrote:
    If you assume a one to one time passing for earth and oerth, you could set 1983 to 573 and work backwards, working in some reference to Zagig to get an early CY date and seeing if that put you anywhere in the 1800s.


    This is quite inventive and cool, IMO. I'm going to say you could attempt to apply the same principle to the St. Cuthbert adventure in Dragon 100. And St. Cuthbert! And to the Odd Alley Gord story, which also references Earth dates. As far as I can see/recall there is no "time dilation" effect and the one to one ratio should hold absent pure chronomacy or some dimensional/temporal "rift" in specific cases. Never tried the proof. Very interesting.
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    GVD
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    Fri Dec 23, 2005 4:23 pm  

    It's well-worth comparing all three published versions of Murlynd to decide how to fold/spindle/mutilate this NPC for your home campaign:


    • Dragon 71 (March 1983) lists him as a Lawful (good) Paladin/Magic User/Illusionist, 12th level in each
    • EX2 Land Beyond the Magic Mirror (1983) lists him as an 18th MU; given his shoes of Fharlanghn, it's likely that this version of Murlynd is N or NG
    • WOG box set (1983) lists him as a LG 12th Paladin/MU/Illusionist


    I list these in likely order of publication: EX2 was definitely published prior to the 1983 box set, and Dragon 71 was likely written first, given how early in the year it was printed. Given that, it's odd that Gygax chose to present Murlynd as an 18 MU in EX2, but he was originally an MU in the Lake Geneva campaign, so that's truer to the PC's roots.

    Other details differ between the three versions, too, including Murlynd's MR percentage, state of deity-dom, etc.
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    Sun Apr 15, 2007 5:09 am  

    I placed Murlynd as originally from Earth's Old West, having found a portal to Oerth's Castle Greyhawk, and later having become a magic-user to better survive in a fantasy realm. His paladin levels come from his years as a sheriff on Earth, but he couldn't tap into any "magic" abilities until his arriving on Oerth. He might have had the resistance to injury, immunity to fear, and the Divine Grace (to show his skill as a heroic gunfighter), but paladin spells and such didn't kick in til Oerth. My campaign, I have Murlynd as a former doctor, tinkerer, and sheriff from Oerth, who is now a wizard15/paladin5, divine rank 0, who can work steampunk tech, and whose spell effects mimic the tech level of his birth. I found him to have been known originally as "Dr. D.R. Murlynd", so that is how I use him in my variant GH campaign. His big mission is to findout how all this new technomagic has got onto Oerth, and make sure it isn't used for purposes opposite of his boss, Heironeous', wishes.
    Apprentice Greytalker

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    Mon Apr 16, 2007 5:10 am  

    Wow! Blast from the past! I thought this thread was dead. Yes, I had him do a similar thing between Earth/Oerth, but I had him as a ex-Confederate soldier in the 1870s Old west, that had an epiphany and got sucked up into the GH setting (another story, there) after helping homesteaders (a Clint Eastwood/Josie Wales and John Wayne/Undefeated combo). However, I did not give him such mission specifics as trav13369 has. My characters are from modern-day Earth who, like Murlynd, get sucked into GH, but without the magical powers. They have to interact with him, so there is a common background- provided, of course, they survive their initial culture shock (talk about the fun of starting out at Level 1!).

    Anyway, thanks to all for their comments.

    Douginator
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