Hawk's Death

Hawk's Death. House Rules 0.0
Hawks Death Campaign. PBeM House Rules (feb 2002)

Living Document. A work in progress.

This set of house rules is intended to be a living document. This campaign is at least as much the players’ as it is the DM’s. Any suggestions for changes or improvements to the house rules are highly encouraged, and will be given full consideration. Any updates or changes to these house rules that are incorporated, will be communicated in monthly updates to this post. Therefore players are recommended to check back here at least once monthly to review the house rules.

Posting Protocol

Full DM postings will typically occur twice a week. Any deviation from this schedule will be communicated to the players as soon as it is known. Players should post at least once after each full DM posting. Role-playing is encouraged, so feel free to post as frequently as you wish in order to develop your character. If a player does not post within three days of a DM post, (without having given prior notice) the actions of that player for the turn in question will be determined by the DM (based on character history, common sense, and the actions of the rest of the group). Shorter DM posts will occur more frequently these will be updates, usually be to answer character questions, provide NPC dialogue, or react to character movements,
and are intended to quicken the pace of the game.

If for any reason, a player will be unable to respond to turns for awhile (e.g. business trip, holidays, busy week, etc.), a short note to that effect, along with an estimated return date would be greatly appreciated. Obviously, emergency situations are exempted. The DM will control the character during any such periods. If a player fails to post for a period of 10 days without providing advance notice, then that character is subject to removal from the game.

If a player decides that they wish to permanently leave the game, I would appreciate a short note informing me of this (this note should be sent to me only, and not posted to the entire group). Once notified, I will either seek a replacement player for that character, have the DM take over the character as an NPC, or write the character out of the campaign – whichever is deemed most appropriate by the DM.

Once an action or words are posted, they cannot be retracted or taken back. It is done. If a player posts contradictory information regarding his actions, the DM will have sole determination over what actually occurs.

Postings to the entire group should only include information that the entire group can see, hear, or be aware of. (Note that this does not include character thoughts that others would not be aware of!) If you wish to perform some action that only part of the group will be aware of you should only post that particular information to the applicable players. The DM will
provide information after each post as to where to post any replies.

Similarly if the party splits, or if one or more players pursue their own goals, then those postings should be kept private to the DM and any players who are also present, rather than publicly posted to the message board. If you wish to conduct some action in secret, unbeknownst to any members of the group, you should only post that particular information to the DM.

Actions should be described in terms of how the other characters would see them. For example, instead of posting, “Ezekiel will cast a sleep spell upon the goblin horde.”, a mage character should post something to the effect of: “Ezekiel dug into the belt pouch hanging from his side, threw a pinch of fine particles into the air and proceeded to intone cryptic words while moving his hands about in odd gestures.” The player would then post
privately to the DM, “I cast my sleep spell at the goblin horde.”

Any out-of-character questions or comments that are included within your postings must be distinguished as such by placing “OOC” in front of such comments.

Any postings that are not sent to the entire group should contain the word “PRIVATE” in the subject heading. It is then up to the recipients whether the information contained within should be shared with other characters.

The DM must be copied on all correspondence, both public and private.

Profanity is acceptable in postings, provided it is not overused, and providing that is within character dialogue and appropriate to that character.

In the event of inter-party friction or conflict, please remember that you are playing a role. All conflict and bad feeling should at all times be kept within character. Never flame or attack any other player directly and out of character.

All posts should be written in the past tense.

Time & Weather

Time and weather will be observed in the campaign. The campaign begins after the New Year’s Needfest celebrations, 585CY. The date and the observed weather will be noted in the DM’s posting at the beginning of each game day if the characters are able to be aware of such things.

Weekly Expenses

At the end of each game week, the DM will deduct a sum of money from your character’s funds. This deduction will be communicated to you privately and will be calculated to cover the costs of rent, lodging, food, drink, clothing or any other mundane costs accumalated by daily living in the big city. Any other costs or purchases made will be covered within the normal
course of gaming (eg. healing costs, armour repair, unusual purchases). If the character cannot cover the costs, the repurcussions will be roleplayed (eg. eviction, going hungry etc.). If a character has any form of income, this will also be calculated into the weekly expenses and may even result in monetary gain if the income offsets the outgoings.

Character Death

In the unfortunate event that a character of a player in good standing dies, and is unable to be resurrected, restored, reincarnated, etc., the following will occur. The DM will allow the player to submit a new character for inclusion in the campaign. The following restrictions will apply:

1. The character must be of a different character class, race and alignment than the one who just died.

2. The DM will provide information regarding starting wealth, equipment and magical items, as well as the appropriate time for the character to join the campaign.

3. Acceptance of the proposed new character into the campaign is at the DM’s discretion.

Experience Points

Awarding of experience points will be given at appropriate points within the game, and will be kept in private postings between DM and player. Experience points will be awarded as per the DMG (3ed) but particularly for the following actions (in no special order):

1.) Problem-solving, cleverness, inventiveness, etc.

2.) Good role-playing, playing within character motivations & alignment, etc.

3.) Posting frequency and quality of posts.

Level Advancement

Level advancement will take place at the experience point levels specified by the 3ed D&D Core Rules. However, occasionally (and at the DM’s discretion) for the characters to obtain certain skills or feats they may need to seek out training.

Also discussion amongst characters of these game mechanics (Hey, Jhaax what level are you now?) is strongly discouraged.

Sorcery and Spellcraft

Sorcerers do not exist within my campaign as presented within 3ed rules. The few sorcerers that do exist are extremely rare individuals. Special dispensation from the DM will be required to play a sorcerer.

Mages however are as per the Core Rules. However if designing a mage character for inclusion as a new player, please use only those spells presented within the Players Handbook (3ed) or the Wizards supplement Tome and Blood. If other sources become available these house rules will be updated, but as it stands special dispensation from the DM needs to be
granted before any other spells may be used.

This campaign will utilize material spell components for spell-casters. Spell-casters will be responsible for making sure they have an adequate quantity of spell components on hand. It will not be assumed that a spell-caster will simply have them�she must acquire them. Spell components are not required when casting spells from scrolls.

Die Rolls

All die rolls will be conducted exclusively by the DM, and will be largely invisible to the players – they will only see the results. My intention is that this campaign will read like a multi-authored piece of fiction, rather than as a mechanical game.


Fumbles and critical hits will be used in this campaign differently from the Core Rules to reflect the potential danger of lethal combat. As all game mechanics and dice rolling will be effectively ‘invisible’ to the players the specifics of these rules are presented here.

Combat can be quite time-consuming in a PBEM campaign. Since I do not want combat to take away from the other elements of the campaign, I would like to be able to conduct combat sequences in as few postings as possible. In order to accomplish this, players will need to provide as much information as they can once a combat sequence begins. Please consider providing information such as:

1.) Contingency plans once hit points fall below a certain level.

2.) A prioritized list of opponents.

3.) Note one or two special tactics you are on the watch for.

4.) Note what you intend to do if your opponent flees; and if other members of your party flee.

5.) Note what actions you will take, and when, during the combat sequence (what weapons, what spells, special defenses, special attacks, contingencies, etc.).

This is not intended as an exhaustive list. It simply illustrates some examples. The bottom line is that I plan to conduct combat sequences to their full completion based on the initial information given me by the players. The more information players provide, the more likely the combat will go as they intended it.

I will only interrupt a combat sequence with additional postings if it is an extremely pivotal event in the combat, if unexpected/unanticipated circumstances dictate that it is necessary, or if the combat extends beyond 5 rounds.

Character Creation

New players are always welcome. The DM will also consider players with multi characters (although two would be the limit). When designing a character for submission please bear the following in mind.

1) Feel free to choose race, class, level and alignment, but please use only those options presented within the Players Handbook, DMG, or Tome and Blood or in these house rules(and these includes skills, feats, and equipment magical or otherwise). If other sources become available these house rules will be updated but as it stands special dispensation from the DM needs to be granted before any other options may be used.

2) Initially, please concentrate on your characters background and personality. The higher the level you intend to start out at, the more detailed your history needs to be. If you intend to play a 12th level druid, it needs to be clear how your druid got to 12th level. Of course personality and motivations should always be detailed. Well-rounded and balanced, or
original and interesting characters stand a much better chance of being included than stereotypes or cliches.

3) Again if designing a higher level character you may feel free to suggest any magical items than have acquired, although these will need to come from the above noted sources and be approved by the DM.

4) If you are not familiar with 3ed rules but still wish to play, this is not a problem. Simply design your characters background and personality, and provide as much information as you can and the DM can design the game stats from your specifications.

5) The DM reserves the right to approve or deny and character submissions and also to change any details of a character that he chooses.

Other Rules

All rules not covered within these House Rules are at the discretion of the DM, but will generally correspond with those presented in the 3ed D&D Core Rules, Core Rule Supplements.

At times I may be using published adventures from either Greyhawk, other D&D, or other roleplaying sources. These adventures will be altered to a greater or lesser degree. If any player should happen to recognize any of these sources they will be expected to keep their player and character knowledge separate at all times.

Of course I will also be using the various Greyhawk source books that detail the Free City and its environs and again players are expected not to abuse any knowledge that they may have.


Class Skill: Bard, Fighter, Rogue, Paladin
Cross-Class: Barbarian, Cleric, Druid, Monk, Ranger, Sorcerer, Wizard
Untrained: No

Use this skill to survive the intrigues of the great metropolis, spot pickpockets working the crowd, recognize corruption amongst officials, assess quickly political and social climate, or to find a particular neighbourhood or guild.

CHECK: You are comfortable in the biggest of cities, you can keep yourself and others safe and negotiate the corruption, bureaucracy and intrigues of city life.

10: Spotting pickpockets working the crowd/Recognize corruption.
15: Finding a particular neighbourhood or guild in an unfamiliar town
20: Reading between the lines, analyzing gossip, emotions etc. to assess political/social climate.

RETRY: To analyze a climate, retry’s may be made every week. The result of that check applies until the next check is made. All other situations allow for retries as the situation presents them.

SPECIAL: If you have 5 or more ranks of Gather Information, you can get a +2 synergy bonus in all applicable situations.


Vanguard (by Gary Gygax)

The vanguard serves as infiltrator and spell support on thieving missions. They are typically part of any scouting mission, using their thieving abilities to get them close enough to the locale and/or mark to use their spell and detection abilities to reveal guardians and other dangers. During missions, they coordinate group movement and increase the effectiveness of
their roguish compatriots through the use of their spells. Thieves’ guilds greatly value the services of vanguards, and actively recruit vanguards for membership in the guild, often offering many perks as enticement. Vanguards also prove valuable as spies for many military units.

Clerics who value wealth and other material gains above honest philosophical principles make the best vanguards. Multiclass bards, fighters, monks, and rogues also pursue this path. Multiclass wizards rarely become vanguards, but those that do provide strong spell support.


REQUIREMENTS: To qualify to become a vanguard, a character must fulfill all the following criteria:
SKILLS: Hide: 6 ranks, Move Silently: 6 ranks, Speak Language: Thieves Cant, Urban Lore: 4 ranks

FEATS: Combat Casting

SPELLCASTING: Ability to cast 1st-level divine spells

CLASS SKILLS: The vanguard’s class skills (and the key ability for each skill) are Alchemy (Int), Balance (Dex), Climb (Str), Concentration (Con), Disable Device (Int), Disguise (Cha), Hide (Dex), Intuit Direction (Wis), Jump (Str), Listen (Wis), Move Silently (Dex), Open Lock (Dex), Read Lips
(Int), Search (Int), Scry (Int), Spot (Wis), Tumble (Dex), Urban Lore (Wis), and Use Rope (Dex)


Weapon and Armour Proficiency: Vanguards are proficient with the crossbow (hand or light), dagger (any types), dart, light mace, sap, sling, and shortsword. Medium-size vanguards are also proficient with certain weapons that are too big for Small vanguards to use but that still conceal easily: club, heavy crossbow, heavy mace, morningstar, quarterstaff, and rapier. Vanguards are proficient with light armour but not with shields.

LEVEL 1st 2nd 3rd 4th
1st 0 – - -
2nd 1 – - -
3rd 1 0 – -
4th 1 1 – -
5th 1 1 0 -
6th 1 1 1 -
7th 2 1 1 0
8th 2 1 1 1
9th 2 2 1 1
10th 2 2 2 1
1st +0 +0 +0 +2 Detect Secret Doors (3/day)
2nd +1 +0 +0 +3 Detect Scrying (1/day)
3rd +2 +1 +1 +3
4th +3 +1 +1 +4 Invisibility (1/day)
5th +3 +1 +1 +4 Silent Spell
6th +4 +2 +2 +5 See Invisibility
7th +5 +2 +2 +5 Invisibility (2/day)
8th +6 +2 +2 +6 Nondetection
9th +6 +3 +3 +6
10th +7 +3 +3 +7 Improved Invisibility (1/day)

DETECT SECRET DOORS: At 1st level, a vanguard gains the spell-like ability of detect secret doors three times per day. The ability functions as the spell, with the vanguard’s level determing duration.

SPELLS: Beginning at 1st level, vanguard gains the ability to cast a small number of divine spells. To cast a spell, the vanguard must have a Wisdom score of at least 10 + the spell’s level, so a vanguard with a Wisdom of 10 or less cannot cast these spells. Vanguard bonus spells are based on Wisdom, and saving throws against these spells have a DC of 10 + spell level + the vanguard’s Wisdom modifier (if any). When the vanguard gets 0 spells of a given level, such as 1st-level spells at 1st level, the vanguard gets only bonus spells. A vanguard without a bonus spell for that level cannot yet cast a spell of that level. The vanguard’s spell list appears below. A vanguard has access to any spell on the list and can freely choose which to prepare, just like a cleric.

DETECT SCRYING: At 2nd level, a vanguard gains the spell-like ability of detect scrying once per day. The ability functions as the spell.

INVISIBILITY: At 4th level, a vanguard gains the spell-like ability of invisibilty once per day. The ability functions as the spell, with the vanguard’s level determining duration. This ability may be used twice per day at 7th level.

SILENT SPELL: At 5th level, a vanguard gains the silent spell metamagic feat as a nobus fea.

SEE INVISIBILITY: At 6th level, a vanguard gains the spell-like ability of see invisibility. The ability functions as the spell of the same name except that it is a permanent ability that requires concentration to activate. It takes a full action for the vanguard to use this ability for one round.

NONDETECTION: A vanguard gains the permanent supernatural ability of nondetection. This ability functions as the spell of the same name except that the duration is permanent.

IMPROVED INVISIBILITY: At 10th level, a vanguard gains the spell-like ability of improved invisibility once per day. The ability functions the same as the spell, with the vanguard’s level determining duration.

Vanguard Spell List: Vanguards choose their spells from the following lists.
1st Level: Comprehend Languages, Deathwatch, Detect Chaos/Evil/Good/Law, Obscuring Mist, Protection from Chaos/Evil/Good/Law, Sanctuary.
2nd Level: Darkness, Delay Poison, Find Traps, Remove Paralysis, Silence, Undetectable Alignment.
3rd Level: Dispel Magic, Glyph of Warding, Invisibility Purge, Locate Object, Meld Into Stone, Water Breathing.
4th Level: Air Walk, Freedom of Movement, Neutralize Poison, Sending, Status, Tongues.

Turn 0.1 Campaign Background

Hawks Death.

The year is 585CY and an unsteady peace has descended upon the Flanaess. For three bloody years, the whole of the Flanaess flew banners of war. Nations fell as new empires were born. Demons and devils from the dread planes were bound into service by the foul demigod Iuz and the crazed Ivid V, and hundreds of thousands of mortals died. Finally, the battle-weary combatants gathered in the Free City of Greyhawk to declare peace. Last year the month of Harvester saw the signing of the Pact of Greyhawk, fixing borders and mandating an end to hostilities.

And so peace broke out over the Flanaess. But it was a shaky and unsteady peace. The balance is out of alignment. Evil stands astride the Flanaess poised to deliver the fatal stroke. The gods are watching closely for the actions of a few may make the difference for good or for ill.

Iuz, thought to have been slain in the final weeks of the war has returned to his lands. He is greatly weakened, many believe that he is no longer a god, but whatever the truth he is once again supported by his mother, Iggwilv.

The powerful necromancer returned to Oerth in 583CY, bursting from beneath the streets of Greyhawk City. Long forgotten dwarven dungeons connecting with the infamous ruins of Castle Greyhawk were exposed directly beneath the homes of the Free City. Iggwilv did not return alone, and she did not return quietly. She led a tide of demon spawn into the streets, and the battle to defeat her left much of the River Quarter in ruins. The famous Great Library of Greyhawk was reduced to rubble.

The defenders of the city fought valiantly: warriors, priests, the guilds, wizards from the University and the Circle of Eight all banded together in their time of need and Iggwilv while not killed was driven off.

And then at the very end of the war, just four months ago, tragedy struck again. On the Day of the Great Signing, Rary, a senior member of the Circle of Eight betrayed his companions, shattering the circle by death and treachery. Again the people suffered as much of the Old City was devastated by fire.

Now it is a new year, 585CY, the so-called ‘Year of Peace’ and with the festive events of Needfest behind them the people are looking to rebuild their future. But the fate of the city hangs on a knife-edge. The flood of refugees into the region brings the threat of racial tension, poverty and crime. The champion of the people Michael Torgrim has disappeared, and many fear him to be dead.

The dwarven catacombs beneath the city spew forth creatures of evil nightly and a subterranean war is already being waged. The health of Lord-Mayor Gasgal is in question and it is widely known that the cambion Iuz, seeks a terrible revenge on the city.

The forces of good are scattered, isolated and desperately clinging to their once great stations. Now, must the good folk from every corner of the Flanaess join in the fight against evil. The balance must be restored. Evil must be checked long enough for the forces of good to recover.

Group Description
A 3.5 D&D Email Campaign set in, around and under the Free City of Greyhawk.

This Group is intended as an open forum for all players and friends of Hawk’s Death.

The board may be used for general game announcements, but the idea of establishing this forum is not to necessarily further gameplay within our campaign but to ‘enhance our feeling of community’.

Game related or completely OOC, the intent is that this can be a chat and banter forum for one and all.

(That’s me, by the way, your lovably handsome Dungeon Master and storyteller.)

Group Website

Group Information
Members :27
Category :Dungeons and Dragons
Founded :Jan 20, 2002

The Children of Joyhdee [2]

Haile and Fair Greetings Ian,

“Philidor is easy, since that piece has been crafted into a Corel document, long ago. I have never seen this, any idea where I can get my hands on it?”

At the moment, nowhere. After the beginning of the year, I’ll have the facilities to create PDF document. At that point, I’ll begin converting and dressing documents for release. Vision@Work will probably have a website around then, too.

“Gwydesion of the Cranes is a slightly different story. I have my own ideas about who and where to go with him, but as I’m currently into other projects, these will remain shelved until time allows.”

“Just out of curiosity, would you care to share any of those with me.”

Sure, but as I said, my attention is elsewhere for the moment. Once I put Verbobonc to bed, there’s going to be time for a lot of side projects, including the Knights of the Hart, expanded Cuthberran material (from my long-go posts), a Holdings & Halls product, revised and expanded Doomgrinder material, Pale Falcon articles, sagely lore and so on.

“I know who Gwydesiesin is within my own campaign – he is the one ‘Child’ I have fixed in place, and he is vastly different from the way in which he was presented within Ivid the Undying; that is only his public face, he is way WAY older, and much more powerful, but his days are numbered. His sacrifice has already been partially documented (see my story on canonfire: ‘Iuz the Evil’), and is vital to the restoration of the balance within the Flanaess.”

How much older do you think he can be? Ivid the Undying doesn’t offer his age, save to note his appearance is as one who has perhaps seen more than sixty winters. I assure you he’s lived well beyond that. As for any involvement of his in the affairs of mortals, you’ll note from the words in Chapter One of Ivid, as in the description of Gwydesiesin, that the Children of Johydee manage to impact the world through indirect means. It’s one of the fundamental reasons they have not become marked as power figures in a setting where such folk are singled out. You may, perchance, have too superficial a perception of the Children.

“One question though… ‘the Walker is attempting to remove a large portion of corrupt and profane Medegia…’ do you mean actually and physically, rip it from the Oerth and take it elsewhere? What will it be like once it arrives in the elemental? What of the people? And what would be left behind? Alright, that was a couple of questions ;) Also I am very excited to begin speculating on his previous identity within his mortal life.”

As with the Children of Johydee and other figures, it really matter not who The Walker was in ordinary life. He may not have even been of the Flanaess or Oerth. The point of all these figures is to establish a layer of occurrence grander in scheme than mortal life, even of powerful mortals. To make important miniscule aspects of who and when diminishes their value and impact.

If Death turns out to be some near-sighted schlep with a black robe, the impact of his appearance is lessened. If the Gods have statistics and one can travel to the nether realms and battle them to death, there becomes less value in the Gods. So, all these things are unimportant against what happens now or next.

From Ivid the Undying: “Rather, just keep in mind that there are places, and people, which fit into a grand magical pattern which Istus alone sees in its fullness. Some of them remain entirely enigmatic. That’s deliberate; Philidor, The Walker and The Spectre should, at this time, remain wholly mysterious. Their timespan of perception covers decades and centuries and they are not over-hasty.”

From the Tome of Magic:

“Estate Transference (Alteration)
Range: 0
Components: V, S, M
Duration: Permanent
Casting Time: 10 turns
Area of Effect: 1,000 square feet/level
Saving Throw: None

This powerful spell allows a caster to transfer a large area of land in the Prime Material plane to any of the elemental planes. All buildings, people and wildlife within the area of effect are also transported. The land forms a pocket of the Prime Material plane within the elemental plane.

The pocket is a sphere with a diameter equal to the diameter of the land. The surface of the pocket allows creatures to enter or exit the pocket, but prevents the elements from entering the pocket.

Inside the pocket, the land is surrounded by air of a temperature matching that of the Prime Material plane at the moment the land was moved. In addition, a source of water is created within the pocket.

Before the spell is cast, the area to be moved must be surrounded by solid markers of material from the destination plane. Thus, if a wizard wants to move his castle to the Elemental Plane of Fire, he must first surround the area with solid blocks of matter from the Elemental Plane of Fire, such as hardened magma or magically-crystallized fire. The blocks must be spaced no more than five feet apart and may be placed above ground or under the surface (at a depth of no more than three feet).

The wizard must be within the area to be moved when he casts the spell. When the land moves, a hemispherical crater is left behind in the Prime Material plane. Inside its pocket on the desired place, the land continues its existence as if nothing changed, with the exception of occasional visits from planar creatures.

Any land that is moved in this manner can never again be moved with spell. The material component (in addition to the markers) is the appropriate magical device to control elements of the desired plane (bowl of commanding water elementals, brazier of commanding fire elementals, censer of controlling air elementals or stone of controlling earth elementals). The item must be permanently placed at the heart of the area of effect and cannot be used for any other purpose. If the device is disturbed in any way, the spell immediately fails, allowing the energies of the elemental plane to flood into the protected area."

“As to which Power(s) support Johydee’s Children, this was never formalized… ….to say he was thinking of The Dweller on the Horizons.”

Don’t confuse The Walker with one of Johydee’s Children. Beings such as he and Philidor are not of that ranking. Do you know what a Proxy is?

From Ivid the Undying: “The Walker is often said to be a being verging on Demipower status, perhaps a human who is undergoing divine ascension and in he last stages of a sublime enlightenment. Some say he is an aspect of Fharlanghn, but this is surely only a partial truth at best.”

“I had never considered this. In my own work, a new generation of Johydee’s Children are arising, one to represent each alignment. She is the supporter of her “chosen.” She chooses them not for their strength or power, but for the belief and ability to lead others. Each of the children has the potential within them to alter the destiny of the Flanaess, lead others correcting the imbalance that is threatening to destroy the world."

Well, that’s not exactly in keeping with her spirit, is it? Refer to the description of Johydee’s Mask in the Book of Artifacts, p.49. Johydee is held to have been a High Priestess of a Goddess of Truth and Justice. Thus, neither balance nor non-goodly alignments would be in order for her.

“My biggest point that I need to resolve is this: before I had fully formulated my plans (as I have now ;) ) I had hinted at something much larger, perhaps even larger than the Gods behind Johydee (have you read Stephen King’s It? the turtle was my inspiration). And now I need to figure out just what that was. Because my main theme, is the restoration of the Balance, Beory could play a big part. Perhaps as Johydee’s ‘mother’, or the deity sponsoring her own ascension, perhaps Fharlaghn is the ‘father’, I don’t know, I’m thinking aloud here.”

Actually, Ian, no, you don’t. In fact, it’s probably better that you don’t define it. Because, what if it’s not a single thing? What if the encounters your players have are but diaphanous tendrils of multiple cosmic machinations? It is the human need to define and align that causes us to take everything we have and force-fit it into a single form. What if it’s two (or three, or more) somethings, rather than the one? You arrive at what’s known as misconception. History is full of it, as it should be. Folk of incredible clarity and insight hold less fascination, otherwise.

Indeed, it’s only necessary to convey that there are matters beyond the scope and comprehension of mortal life extant and that occasionally a particular being may play a crucial role. Leave the rest to their imagination and I promise what they will conceive will dwarf anything you could offer.

I have not read Stephen King.

“I loved the Castles Forlorn adventure. I don’t know if you have since managed to get your hands on this, but the boxed set in effect presented three castles, each were obviously Castle Forlorn at various stages of its evolution, and each was populated by the inhabitants at the time. During the course of the adventure the players would jump from one to the next with no real control of their own. They had the ability through their actions to effect things, though, and the major inhabitants of the castle, many of whom are ghosts in the current time can be encountered during their lives. In the past, players might learn the history of the ghosts and try to aid them or deal with them better as foes. A real challenge to DM, this one, but well worth the effort.”

No, I’ve never found this adventure to read it.

“I am shocked, I actually had not realized this. I had assumed that through the strength of her children then she must have been, and of course she is such in earlier and later works. Hhmmm…”

I would challenge you to present an earlier work that mentions her as a Power. Even in the pages of Dragon No. 71, she was mentioned only as a quasi-diety, on the level of such folks as Keoghtom; a grouping which is well worthy of expunge. It’s from here that she first appears as such ranking in the 1998 “Greyhawk Player’s Guide”.

For the greatest part, this was an effort to pull together assorted mentions from magazine articles and products of a huge database for continuity. Unfortunately, no effort was made to correct inherent errors or expunge material that deserved it. The going concept of the time was that it would somehow offend people to get rid of anything. Thus, at points you’d have seen these convoluted arguments and explanations isolating dictionary definitions for key words, rather than just tidying up the storyline, correcting inaccurate dates, explaining away the droit as someone’s mistellings.

“That is why I value your insights, Noel. OK, so you attempted to prevent Johydee from being listed as a Power, so what is she? I have no obligation to follow what is published, in fact my players certainly have no idea yet of Johydee’s identity. I didn’t know when I began this arc in our adventures where it was headed. I was inspired by the vague ‘Children of Johydee’ thread on the forum and began to develop these ideas years ago, before I even knew who Johydee was or where I was going with it. This is the ultimate work in progress. I am excited about anything you can offer on this one.”

Honestly, Johydee is probably no-one of any consequence beyond her deeds. It’s probably far more likely that one of the so-called Children of Johydee was actually behind the crafting of the mask which bears her name. You’ll note from the “Book of Artifacts” that she didn’t create it.

More likely, these folk came to the attention of Oerthers due to Johydee’s actions. Due to their otherwise unknown status, those who followed were simply lumped into association coined by her name in the way these things are. The Children, then, are not related to her in any sense, temporal or spiritual.

One of my irritants is found in the way folk take things in their most superficial sense, above all other. Through actual research and reading of the source material, matters become more clear by far. Or, perhaps it is better to say, it becomes more clear what things are not (like Tzunk being incorrectly named, even by Sargent, as the Wizard-Priest of the Isles of Woe when he was actually the discoverer of the fateful tome). Instead, the errors of one author are further abused in later works, perpetuating the error, rather than correcting or abating it.

I suppose this is how I’ve become so involved in setting matters aright. Too bad it’s so poorly received.

Soft Winter and Sweet Flowers,
The Watcher

The Children of Joyhdee

Haile and Fair Greetings Ian,

“I don’t expect you to remember me but we were talking about six years ago about the Children of Joyhdee through GreyTalk, I had forgotten myself but I came across our old posts in the archives (I was Thoric@msn.com in those days).”

Actually, you are who I thought you were when I received the post. I keep copies of all my mail against a future when I may need to recall what transpired. I used a Juno address way back then, but in the meanwhile I’ve become a tad more profligate, improving my system and connection, dramatically. Normally, I give out my Netscape address for replies, but this is my main address… at least until the group server is fully functional.

“You had mentioned that you had some insights into where Carl Sargant was headed with his Children of Joydhee threads, namely Gwydesion of the Cranes and Philidor. I wondered if you still cared to share those with me.”

Philidor is easy, since the piece has been crafted into a Corel document, long ago. Of course, in the modern – post 591 CY – environment, he’s more or less moot and removed from the Flanaess. I’ll likely revise that data and reformat it into a PDF document come the New Year, assuming Vision@Work gets a website.

Gwydesion of the Cranes is a slightly different story. I have my own ideas about who and where to go with him, but as I’m currently into other projects, these will remain shelved until time allows.

From an old GreyTalk post:
The Walker: The Walker is a kind of demi-proxy, under the influence of a Quest spell, which he is completely in agreement with, that will reward him in the afterlife. In life, and to a certain degree now, he was one of Joyhdee’s Children, a mage with fantastic power who was devoted to the betterment of the Oeridians.

Through serious tinkering and the use of the largely unknown field of meta-magic, the Walker is attempting to remove a large portion of corrupt and profane Medegia, centered on Mentrey, from the Flanaess. As most of you know from my earlier post, and from the online text of Ivid the Undying:

“Detect magic shows a faint line of abjuration and alteration magics left behind in the trails of The Walker, and a particularly skilled decoder of cyphers might see The Walker is building up a spider’s web pattern centered on Mentrey… Certainly one startling physical change which has been observed only very recently is that tall, stark, utterly smooth stone monoliths 12’ or so in height have sprung up at the nexus points in the web pattern, and these radiate the same pattern as the trail… these silent stones stand as physical evidence of The Walker’s passage… Again, their purpose – if they have one – is unknown.”

Until now. When all this patterning is complete, The Walker will have completed the casting of a HUGE “Estate Transference”. This casting explains why The Walker cannot be turned from his passage (and why he’s able to deflect/defeat any attempts to do so), he’s working to save his Oeridian home from further defilement by both the ascendant Power of Hextor (who created the foul animuses) and the infestation of fiends.

Somewhere well protected in Mentrey is a non-standard stone of controlling earth elementals, perhaps a cellar stone or buried statue, which will open a gateway and remove this evil. The Walker will of course be present when this happens, the last leg of his journey bringing him down the very streets of Mentrey. The last act of this quasi-mortal, once (this large chunk of) Medegia has been transported to the Elemental Plane of Earth, will be to destroy the stone, and with it any chance of return to Oerth. From here The Walker will be recalled to serve his new master on the Outer Planes.

As to which Power(s) support Joyhdee’s children, this was never formalized. Carl was toying with a number of potential ideas and planned to “reveal” something as the campaign advanced. Sadly, we will not likely have the chance to find out what Carl had in mind. As to the ultimate fate of The Walker, I have dug through my old notes and found that Carl was somewhat partial to Fharlanghn. I don’t think it’s much of a stretch – The Walker, Elemental Plane of Earth, saving the Oeridians – to say he was thinking of The Dweller on the Horizons.

Curiously, we never got around to discussing the dog, unless it was the mage’s (in true life) familiar. The Walker is devoted to its well-being, and Carl did mention there was an uncanny rapport between them. I can only fathom that some portion of the divine essence which empowers/sustains The Walker for so long must also feed through their magical link to sustain the dog as well.

The Spectre: Gosh folks, there’s a whole lot less to go on here. I never got my last reply from Carl, so I only have a number of side notes on the topic. First off, the Spectre is one of the elves that has undergone The Testing. This happened long ago in Flanaess history. Even at that time, however, the elves controlled some part of Lendore Isle as a most secret site for seeking the Retreat. For reasons we never delved fully, the (as considered by Carl) Oeridian Power Cyndor (Time, Infinity, Continuity) was on good terms with the Elven Power Labelas Enoreth, because of some unusual facet of this island chain, probably a contention concerning the Suel Power Lendore (Time, Tedium).

The Spectre is/was/will be an elven worshipper of Labelas from the “City of the Summer Stars” whose Retreat to those islands was interrupted by the discovery of a huge, unnatural mansion. Unfortunately, I can’t say what significance the Spectre was supposed to have on the campaign at large – if, indeed, Carl had even dreamed up all the connections himself as of then.

What I can tell you is moving Lendore’s faithful off the islands that bare his namesake and converting them to a stronghold of powerful elves was a deliberate intention on Carl’s part. The Spectre was to have had some, alas unknown, part in that.

For all intents and purposes, The Spectre is trapped between the Prime Material and some other plane, possibly Arvanaith, possibly something related to the Chronomancy supplement, which Carl also wanted to use something from. He did say the effects on play were adventures similar to the time-shifting castle found in the Ravenloft supplement Castles Forlorn. I do not personally own this product, so I can only speculate as to the particulars here.

If anyone is familiar with this product, I would be interested in any insights you might have. Please email me privately at vision.at.work@juno.com. I hope that wasn’t too disappointing; many times Carl’s notes weren’t all that clear, or he’d make references to things he hadn’t told me about yet. I often got the impression he could use a good assistant/apprentice to keep him organized.

“Joyhdee seems like a very obscure and little known deity to have sponsored such powerful (and they ARE powerful) characters. I am very curious, especially in these ‘children’ and also in any thoughts or information you may have on Joyhdee herself, regarding her mortal life and/or ascension and who may have sponsored HER.”

::cough, cough:: You’ll note that nowhere in Sargent’s work is Joyhdee mentioned as a Power. It seems the folks behind GH98+ can’t get away from creating the unnecessary and obvious. And, yes, I had attempted to work with them to avoid such measures. Take a look at the Special Thanks line in the Living Greyhawk Gazetteer for evidence. So, Ian, you must decide if you will follow what has been published or something alternate if I am to offer you anything more,

Soft Winter and Sweet Flowers,


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