Signup
Welcome to... Canonfire! World of GreyhawK
One of the founders of our hobby and one of the most unsung contributors to Dungeons & Dragons, Len Lakofka has passed away at the age of 76.
Along with the many adventures, classes, spells, and rules he created,
Len was also father of the Suel in Greyhawk, designer of their gods, and namesake of the Lendore Isles.
The value of his work goes without saying, but his presence will be sorely missed. The adventures of Leomund go on.
Len Lakofka 1944-2020
[DISCUSS]
Features
Touring the Flanaess
Cities of
Oerth
Deadly Denizens
Greyhawk Wiki
#greytalk
JOIN THE CHAT
ON DISCORD
    Canonfire :: View topic - My Epic Greyhawk Guide
    Canonfire Forum Index -> Greyhawk- EpicHawk
    My Epic Greyhawk Guide
    Author Message
    rob_douglas@mac.com
    Guest





    Tue Jan 11, 2005 1:20 pm  
    My Epic Greyhawk Guide

    I have just posted the working draft of my own Guide to Epic Greyhawk.

    Please feel free to send me any comments to rob_douglas at mac.com.

    http://homepage.mac.com/rob_douglas/DND/Greyhawk/Epic%20Greyhawk.html

    ROB
    Grandmaster Greytalker

    Joined: Aug 05, 2004
    Posts: 1446


    Send private message
    Sat Feb 26, 2005 7:33 pm  

    If I am reading this right, the Rain of Colorless Fire, the Invoked Devastation and Slerotin's Tunnel are offered as examples of "epic" spells.

    I disagree. Epic spells are cast by epic characters. Epic characters are attainable by PCs. I don't see any PC ever being able to cast anything close to any of these spells.

    There is, IMO, a level beyond "epic" spellcasting.
    _________________
    GVD
    Master Greytalker

    Joined: Jul 13, 2002
    Posts: 1076
    From: Orlane, Gran March

    Send private message
    Sun Feb 27, 2005 5:23 am  
    Epic Casting

    I dont think I agree, GVD. Or at least I think there should be the option. I think that characters should be able to cast something like these spells if they cast as a group. I would make it, though, so that they have to cast as a really large group. And finding the necessary knowledge would be at the end of a fairly epic quest.

    "Relics & Rituals," by Sword and Sorcerey has a series of Rituals which require multiple casters casting for extended periods (hours, days, weeks). These can cast trully awesome spells. There must be a similar system other D20 works.

    It has several weaknesses... one, IMC they can be used but they are easily disrupted...one caster "out of tune," so to speak can mess up the whole batch. Also, the more powerful the spell the more difficult it is to mask or hide from scrying. Finally, a larger group of lower level casters could disrupt or counter such an event.

    This tends to stick with Oerth History, I think. Wasn't it a group of casters as Tovag Bargu that launched the rain of colorless fire?
    Master Greytalker

    Joined: Jul 13, 2002
    Posts: 1076
    From: Orlane, Gran March

    Send private message
    Sun Feb 27, 2005 5:24 am  
    Like

    Rob.. I like your guide, and hope that you continue to flesh it out beyond the outline stage.

    Thanks.
    Apprentice Greytalker

    Joined: Feb 18, 2002
    Posts: 58
    From: Baltimore, MD, USA

    Send private message
    Mon Feb 28, 2005 9:04 pm  
    Re: Epic Casting

    GVDammerung wrote:
    If I am reading this right, the Rain of Colorless Fire, the Invoked Devastation and Slerotin's Tunnel are offered as examples of "epic" spells.

    I disagree. Epic spells are cast by epic characters. Epic characters are attainable by PCs. I don't see any PC ever being able to cast anything close to any of these spells.

    There is, IMO, a level beyond "epic" spellcasting.


    There is - it is Divine. But Slerotin was not divine. AS powerful as he
    was, there is nothing in the rules that says no one can surpass him,
    or the other mages of power. You can rule such in your campaign by fiat, but it makes no sense if you intend to play Epic to make such an
    arbitrary ruling.

    I get the feeling you may not be familiar with the rules for
    Epic levels, and Epic Spellcasting:

    http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=d20/article/srd35
    http://www.wizards.com/d20/files/v35/EpicSpells.rtf

    (Check out "Rain of Fire" - a spell with a 2-mile radius
    of effect that sounds very familiar on a smaller scale).

    It can be very, very powerful and very costly to cast. It can even
    take long casting times and rituals involving many other casters
    giving up 9th level spells, and Artifacts as foci. The Base DC to
    do the RoCF or ID would be HUGE, given the area of effect. You
    will need to apply a lot of mitigating factors, including the above
    and possibly caster death to be able to cast it as a caster less
    than 100th level. I haven't done the math yet, but that is
    why I put it on the list. In canon, it was clearly mortals who
    cast those spells and therefore there should be rules about
    how to cast them again.

    Of course you can always just hand-wave such features, and
    that will work fine for most campaigns. It all depends on the
    level of rules-based detail you want to give. I intend to potentially
    have a group trying to recast something like RoCF which the
    PCs have to stop - first by stopping a member of the ritual,
    and eventually having to go after the main caster. This is
    just one example of why you would want to detail the rules for
    casting such a spell.

    Anyway, the mere existence of these spells in Greyhawk
    lore is my justification for there being an Epic Greyhawk
    campaign. Other issues that would have to be dealt with
    include answering the question - Is magic in decline? If so
    then that could be a reason for such spells not existing anymore,
    and it could be an epic quest to reverse that problem too.

    ROB
    Apprentice Greytalker

    Joined: Feb 18, 2002
    Posts: 58
    From: Baltimore, MD, USA

    Send private message
    Mon Feb 28, 2005 9:09 pm  
    Re: Like

    Anced_Math wrote:
    Rob.. I like your guide, and hope that you continue to flesh it out beyond the outline stage.

    Thanks.


    Thank you. I will try. I originally hoped to have it be a full-
    reference resource for Epic Level stuff, but as I am designing
    my Epic campaign, I realize that that is less useful an idea.
    What I think Epic DMs need are ideas, and some examples,
    not fully fleshed NPCs and Magic, and adventures. And I don't
    have time to design things I am not using myself. So I will
    post whatever I use, and links to things I find as well, and
    keep gathering ideas that others may want to flesh out for
    themselves. IF anyone has some Epic content they want to
    share, like NPCs, monsters, Spellls, or Adventure ideas/plots/
    detailed write-ups, I would love to link to them.

    Thanks,
    ROB
    Apprentice Greytalker

    Joined: Jul 22, 2005
    Posts: 113
    From: Orland Hills, Illinois

    Send private message
    Sat Jul 23, 2005 11:41 pm  

    Some Epic Ideas

    1.Look at Greyhawk "artifacts" Some of them can be created as "simple" epic items (The Sword of Kas 3.0e is what came to mind) to see the "Power Level" involved.

    2.Iuz Cool- I have not looked at his stats in 3e Deities and Demigods prior to writing this, but what is keeping him in check? He's a god for God's sake (that was bad)Laughing . The Prime Material is his home plane. What is keeping him from whipping an up an Avatar, a few proxies, then go out and take names?

    There are no Planar Metropoli on eastern maps. ELH states minimum population is is 100,000+. None have that much population, City of Greyhawk and Rel Astra are the closeste
    Apprentice Greytalker

    Joined: Feb 18, 2002
    Posts: 58
    From: Baltimore, MD, USA

    Send private message
    Sun Jul 24, 2005 12:31 pm  

    HI Nathan

    Some excellent ideas/issues:

    NathanBrazil wrote:
    1.Look at Greyhawk "artifacts" Some of them can be created as "simple" epic items (The Sword of Kas 3.0e is what came to mind) to see the "Power Level" involved.

    I agree. I was hoping to at least catalog them all. There are many items listed as Artifacts in the various writings, some of which could be epic items, or would be artifacts with epic items as a basis. The sword of Kas is a great example. It was always a +6 weapon in older editions, the only one of its kind. Its powers definitely have to fit the availability of Epic items in Greyhawk - more on that below...

    Quote:
    2.Iuz Cool- I have not looked at his stats in 3e Deities and Demigods prior to writing this, but what is keeping him in check? He's a god for God's sake (that was bad)Laughing . The Prime Material is his home plane. What is keeping him from whipping an up an Avatar, a few proxies, then go out and take names?

    The stats were in a Dragon article, not De&Dg. He is Divine Rank 3, which is middle of Demigodhood, and has about 50 hit dice. He is not powerful enough to have an avatar. As for Proxies - to do that he has to give up a Divine Rank to someone else. At most he could make 2 more, but each would then be as powerful a god as he. They would have fewer hit dice, but together, they could take him on - and that is not something he would risk. I think making a Proxy out of Althea, for instance, would be a good way for him to lose control. As it is, there are still enough casters out there that if he did just start stalking about, they could hit him hard all at once and probably take him out. Even though this is his plane, his area of Divine Control is very small, because he is a Demigod. If he could increase his power to Lesser God, then he could increase his sphere of influence by a few miles...

    Quote:
    There are no Planar Metropoli on eastern maps. ELH states minimum population is is 100,000+. None have that much population, City of Greyhawk and Rel Astra are the closeste

    This is a great point, that I was alluding to before. I was going to look into Greyhawk and Epic economics.... The largest city in Greyhawk has, what, 75,000 people. So you are right, no planar metropoli. In the ELH, it suggests changing the max GP value of magic items if you are running an Epic campaign. But for Greyhawk, which I would consider low/rare epic (no 100th level character, for instance), I think the limits in the DMG are perfect. As a result, the most powerful item you can expect to find in a shop is 100,000gp. This is a very important limit, because it means that there are truly no epic items for sale in Greyhawk. It really lends itself to an old-style campaign.

    Making Epic items is very expensive in terms of time, and cost, and feats needed to get there. As a result, finding them by adventuring is the most likely way - and that means research and good old-fashioned dungeon crawls to get into the lost stores of magic from the ancient Suel, the Sulm, the Ur-Flan, and older, reptilian races, from time long forgotten... :)

    The costs of Epic items are such that they are very rare before 30th level. This works out well for a Greyhawk campaign. What I am seeing is that the hero-gods appear to be about 40th level, and demi-gods 50th, with the other gods 60-70th. So most campaigns could easily still find interesting non-deific stiuff to do up through about level 35. The hard part is the ideas, which this board is really great at promoting, and I hope people post their ideas/adventures here. My party just hit 20th, so I am designing ahead a couple of levels, so I should have more postable stuff soon....

    Of course there is always a true planar metropolis. The fact that there are not any in Greyhawk shows why such places as the City of Brass, and the city of the Githyanki, the Lost City of the Gods, or even Dis, are interesting adventuring locales for Oerthian planar travelers. We as DMs should think about what keeps such powerful characters interested in a "low-epic" world? Is it the big fish in a small pond mentality? Of course we also know that there is something special, magical about Oerth. Oerthblood and Dweornite are just 2 examples... Discussions on the Epic implications of those 2 items could lead to several long threads....

    ROB
    Apprentice Greytalker

    Joined: Jul 22, 2005
    Posts: 113
    From: Orland Hills, Illinois

    Send private message
    Tue Jul 26, 2005 9:43 am  

    Have you given thought about Greyspace/Spelljammer?

    The planet Kule (aka the moon Celene) has 15,000 illithids. The largest community, "Sharp Beak" 10,000, the remaining from a little over 1000 down to a little less than 100 has. The mind flayers themselves are not epic but almost all the communities have elder brains. It becomes apocryphal when you take Lords of Madness into account, but it is likely some of those elder brains are very powerful (advanced HD and powers). The 20,000 drow probably keep them in check.

    Edill is an air body 100,000 miles in diameter with a population of
    "many thousandsof dragons. In fact the draconic population of Edill alone is greater than the combined population of the rest of Greyspace plus the whole of Krynnspace plus all of Realmspace!"
    95% metallics / 5% chromatics, The dragons are 1.5 times the size and hp of normal dragons and they are more sociable and cooperative (even red dragons).

    On the planet Gnible is the slowly growing threat of Samanda. In 2nd ed she is Ftr12/Wiz19 lich. I guess 3E would be:
    Samanda (female human Lich Ftr4/Wiz19) which still puts her into epic ranges.

    There is also Planescape, but I do not have many of the products.
    Adept Greytalker

    Joined: Sep 21, 2003
    Posts: 538
    From: Germany

    Send private message
    Wed Jul 27, 2005 6:00 am  

    There's also an obscure reference in the Warriors of Heaven supplement. Something about a possibly mad Solar who guards a portal somewhere in the Crystalmist mountains.
    Apprentice Greytalker

    Joined: Feb 18, 2002
    Posts: 58
    From: Baltimore, MD, USA

    Send private message
    Wed Jul 27, 2005 6:46 pm  

    Thanael wrote:
    There's also an obscure reference in the Warriors of Heaven supplement. Something about a possibly mad Solar who guards a portal somewhere in the Crystalmist mountains.

    Planetar - I placed her near the Frost Giant Jarl, and used her as a side-trek adventure. In an ancient dwarven fortress buit in the mountain, deep inside, they found the mad Planetar fighting against the various demons being let loose from the portal to the layer of Kostchichie. Being mad, she imagined that all the PCs were shapechanged demons and fought her best to stop them. Killed the cleric on an AoO when she tried to Heal her. Anyway, you could make her an advanced Planetar, or use the portal to expand this to Epic.

    Also in Warriors of Heaven, there is a reference to a Citadel of Good located in the Sea of Dust, away from "normal" civilization - protecting against an invasion...

    ROB
    Apprentice Greytalker

    Joined: Jan 23, 2007
    Posts: 5


    Send private message
    Tue Jan 23, 2007 1:30 pm  

    NathanBrazil wrote:
    Some Epic Ideas

    1.Look at Greyhawk "artifacts" Some of them can be created as "simple" epic items (The Sword of Kas 3.0e is what came to mind) to see the "Power Level" involved.

    2.Iuz Cool- I have not looked at his stats in 3e Deities and Demigods prior to writing this, but what is keeping him in check? He's a god for God's sake (that was bad)Laughing . The Prime Material is his home plane. What is keeping him from whipping an up an Avatar, a few proxies, then go out and take names?

    There are no Planar Metropoli on eastern maps. ELH states minimum population is is 100,000+. None have that much population, City of Greyhawk and Rel Astra are the closeste

    Greyhawk has resources greater than a small kingdom. The number of high powered individuals that reside there is well out of proportion with the total number of people that live there. I would say that more is available there than in the average 100,000 population city. The current mage of exchange at the guild can probably get their hands on most any non-epic magic item and many epic items, for the right price.
    Adept Greytalker

    Joined: Sep 21, 2003
    Posts: 538
    From: Germany

    Send private message
    Tue Feb 20, 2007 8:13 am  

    Rob are you aware of Dicefreaks?

    Check out www.dicefreaks.com/~phpBB2 for the free Gates of Hell pdf download and a whole messageboard full of excellent epic and divine material. There is lots of outer planar goodness and even some explicit Greyhawk stuff on their boards (for example Kas the Destroyer, St. Kargoth the Death Knight, Demon Lords, Hero-Deity builds from rasgon and others, GH God fluff and crunch). Esp. check out the revised Greyhawk gods here.

    Make sure to read Dicefreaks' Philosophy #1: Stats for the Unstattable


    Last edited by Thanael on Tue Feb 20, 2007 8:40 am; edited 1 time in total
    Apprentice Greytalker

    Joined: Feb 18, 2002
    Posts: 58
    From: Baltimore, MD, USA

    Send private message
    Tue Feb 20, 2007 8:34 am  

    HI

    Thanks - I am aware of Dicefreaks, and there are things I like, and things I don't. My biggest issue is with the power level of such entities as the Archdukes in Gates of Hell. Asmodeus is basically more powerful in Hell than any god. This doesn't jibe well with Greyhawk canon, where Asmodeus, and all such beings are no more than Lesser Gods, and sometimes less powerful than that. The weakest of Demon Lords is/was weaker than a demigod.

    Their work with deities is inspired and I believe that WotC should just take their guidelines and present them as the rules. I have some disagreements with particulars - like Pholtus has some wasted levels by taking a PrC that gives him a spell like ability 5 times a day that he already has as a god of the Sun domain at will. But they tried and made much better use of Epic level material. One problem they haven't solved is dealing with Ascension - how a character changes from not a god to qasi-deity, to demigod. That is a theme that is present in Greyhawk so I want to explore that. For example, when and how much do you add to your ability scores - making a god from the divine array is one thing, but taking a given set of attributes, with all their inherent bonuses, and then adding demigodhood to that is more difficult.

    I like using them as a guideline, and am modeling my Greyhawk on that - that there should be a level cap, and a power escalation. I think that demigods and archfiends should be in the CR30ish range, up to 40 for Asmodeus. At about 40th level, PCs should ascend to divinity and gain power as a god more than class levels, until they come close to lesser god status. I would probably not go beyond that in campaign - but who knows.....

    ROB
    Adept Greytalker

    Joined: Sep 21, 2003
    Posts: 538
    From: Germany

    Send private message
    Tue Feb 20, 2007 8:57 am  

    Well there is the so-called Special K Problem if you don't have your Archdevils at those power levels. How come Kurtulmak does not rule Hell? As a lesser god he could wipe the floor with a CR 40 Asmodeus. It has been discused oftentimes on the WotC and DF boards. And I agree with DF on this: There needs to be Cosmic Balance.

    "Perhaps more importantly, we took pains to achieve balance not only between gods and cosmic entities, but between deities themselves. For us, part of the issue is explaining how certain creatures compare to others. The age old discussion about Kurtulmak taking down the entirety of the Nine Hells and sticking his barbed tail up Asmodeus' butt and manipulating him like a marionette reflects our concern. Statistics needs to reflect the flavor. If Asmodeus is the true, undisputed King of Hell and not some pawn of the gods (as his flavor clearly indicated in Book of Vile Darkness, his stats should reflect as much. If Corelleon defeated but did not kill Gruumsh, not only should the divine ranks reflect that (or be adjusted to checks... like we did at Dicefreaks), the SDAs should not be such that Corelleon should have annihilated him. It's a matter of comparison and balance. Flavor and stats can work hand in hand if people know what the heck they're doing and take the time to at least try and do it right."
    from Stats for the Unstattable

    Also their take on Asmo is similar to Guide to Hell, where the theory is put forth that the Asmodeus you see is but the avatar of a greater being that nearly no one know about. I personally think that CR 30ish PCs should not be able to kill Lloth or any other Demon Lord. Even the Herogods tread lightly on a Demon Lords home turf. (Come to think of it Demigods and Lesser deities too..)

    Otherwise your progression from Epic Heroes to Hero-Gods to Demigods is exactly on the power level that DF suggests.
    Apprentice Greytalker

    Joined: Feb 18, 2002
    Posts: 58
    From: Baltimore, MD, USA

    Send private message
    Wed Feb 21, 2007 9:42 pm  

    I am familiar with the DF argument, I just don't buy it for Greyhawk. The argument relies on the contention that there are multiple different pantheons and worlds with their own gods, but only 1 Asmodeus and therefore he must be more powerful. But for my purposes that opens up the whole multiverse too far - I don't want to deal with Forgotten Realms, and balancing Eberron, and Mystara as well. So I reach back to 1E rules, and try to fit things into Greyhawk canon.

    From there, we know that Asmodeus is powerful, but something less than a god. Kurtulmak can't expel him not because he is an overdeity, but because he is the chief bureaucrat in a bureaucratic society. His power is given by the gods, all the gods. This is why there are so many plots involving demon lords and archdevils striving for divinity. Iuz fears his father, but at the same time, has already surpassed him in some ways.

    I have not worked out all the details, as I said, but Asmodeus doesn't rule Hell in the sense that he tells the gods what to do - he rules it in the sense that he handles day to day operations of soul taking, and let's the gods worry about their portfoilios.

    Sources showing the weakness of these beings include Dance of Demons, and the original 1E Monster Manual, and even 1E Deities and Demigods. They have some divine traits, and can mold their personal planes, but they all fall in line behind Tharizdun if it comes to that.

    ROB
    Apprentice Greytalker

    Joined: Apr 14, 2007
    Posts: 10


    Send private message
    Wed Apr 25, 2007 2:55 am  

    tried the link

    dead as a doornail.
    Apprentice Greytalker

    Joined: Feb 18, 2002
    Posts: 58
    From: Baltimore, MD, USA

    Send private message
    Wed Apr 25, 2007 10:54 am  
    Correct link

    HI

    Sorry, I rearranged my page:

    at mac.com.

    http://homepage.mac.com/rob_douglas/DND/Greyhawk/Epic%20Greyhawk.html

    is the correct link. And I can't edit the original post because I forgot to log in before posting it.... :)

    ROB
    Mad Archmage of the Oerth Journal

    Joined: Dec 09, 2002
    Posts: 342
    From: Ohio

    Send private message
    Wed Apr 25, 2007 1:06 pm  

    Hey Rob, you might want to check out the World of Greyhawk Magic Item Compendium I compiled. It's available here, http://www.greyhawkonline.com//duicarthan/conversions/WOG-MIC.pdf

    As for the above link, I've got it covered for ya.
    _________________
    Cheerz,
    -Rick "Duicarthan" Miller
    Editor-in-Chief, Oerth Journal
    http://www.oerthjournal.com http://www.greyhawkonline.com/duicarthan
    Display posts from previous:   
       Canonfire Forum Index -> Greyhawk- EpicHawk All times are GMT - 8 Hours
    Page 1 of 1

    Jump to:  

    You cannot post new topics in this forum
    You cannot reply to topics in this forum
    You cannot edit your posts in this forum
    You cannot delete your posts in this forum
    You cannot vote in polls in this forum


    Forums ©


    Canonfire! is a production of the Thursday Group in assocation with GREYtalk and Canonfire! Enterprises

    Contact the Webmaster.  Long Live Spidasa!


    Greyhawk Gothic Font by Darlene Pekul is used under the Creative Commons License.

    PHP-Nuke Copyright © 2005 by Francisco Burzi. This is free software, and you may redistribute it under the GPL. PHP-Nuke comes with absolutely no warranty, for details, see the license.
    Page Generation: 0.21 Seconds