Joined: Aug 03, 2001 Posts: 2818 Location: Michigan
Posted: Thu Aug 24, 2017 12:16 pm Post subject:
I think of him as human. Expedition to the Ruins of Greyhawk includes a statue of him (page 156) beneath Castle Greyhawk, described as "a Suel man with his arms folded across his chest." Admittedly, it's just a statue; it's possible whoever sculpted it had no idea what Slerotin actually looked like.
What makes you focus on the dwarven races as alternatives? Could he be a gnome, an elf, a tiefling, a minotaur? Maybe he's a beholder and he created his Passage using his disintegration ray.
I'm interested in the idea that the derro served in roles in Suel society other than that of slave-miners. In his article "Legacies of the Suel Imperium" in Dragon #241, Roger E. Moore has Diirinka (the derro god) begin life as a slave, learning the magical arts in secret. But what if slave-sorcerers were common in the households of powerful Suel nobles of the era, compelled through powerful enchantments to use their skills only in the service of their masters?
But I also like the idea that Slerotin was a human wizard who became Saint Carmichael of the Conflgration after breaking his staff and rencouncing sorcery.
Was that Rip Van Wormer's idea?
Yes, that was me.
Another interesting figure is Kahoatep from UK6 All That Glitters, a great mage who created the Wind Walkers' Passage through the Hellfurnaces between the Suel lands and the Amedio Jungle. It's possible that Kahoatep is just another name for Slerotin.
Joined: Feb 16, 2003 Posts: 3596 Location: So. Cal
Posted: Fri Aug 25, 2017 10:59 pm Post subject:
Interesting detail. Kahoatep could instead be another Mage of Power (perhaps one even predating Slerotin), and this tunnel making could just be "a Suel thing." It could be be that this magic had been employed for centuries by Mages of Power to make a very few passages through the surrounding mountain ranges to other lands, and to tunnel out vast subterranean complexes and passages beneath the Suel Imperium. And so there is the later Slerotin tunnel going from the Suel lands to the Yeomanry, and an earlier Kahoatep tunnel going from the Suel lands to the Amedio. It could be like Disneyland under the ground there. Probably weren't any tunnels going north though, except maybe a single small one for spies to get into and out of the old Baklunish lands.
As Slerotin is one the the legendary Suel Mages of Power, I see him as being a Suel human. It would be very odd for many Suel tribes to follow anyone who wasn't a Suel of notable power/influence through an immensely long tunnel into a new land. And I see the ancient Suel as being a bit xenophobic too (not to the extent of the Scarlet Brotherhood, but not too far from it either), so probably not very accepting of a non-Suel as a leader. _________________ - Moderator/Admin/Member -
Joined: Aug 03, 2001 Posts: 2818 Location: Michigan
Posted: Sat Aug 26, 2017 4:09 pm Post subject:
I actually placed Kahoatep almost 2,000 years before Slerotin. He could be a lot of different things, but this is what I wrote in my own timeline (adapted from the Oerth Journal #1/11):
3247 SD Zelfed is succeeded by Terazel ad-Zol, who orders the creation of a system of tunnels through the Hellfurnaces leading to the Amedio Jungle. With the aid of the dark mage Kahoatep, this is accomplished. Kahoatep is a mysterious figure, not necessarily of Suloise origin, but under his aegis the House of Zolax slides further into darkness, allying with fiends and worse and installing bureaucrats and advisers of Kahoatep's choice throughout the empire. (-2269 CY)
Some of this is almost word for word from UK6 (page 28) but UK6 implies the land was cursed as a direct result of this descent into evil (the Rain of Colorless Fire isn't mentioned because UK6 isn't exactly a Greyhawk source even if the Living Greyhawk Gazetteer sort of canonized it by putting the Hek in the Sea of Dust), while I placed it a few thousand years earlier to when I thought the empire's slide into decadence began.
I don't think we know Slerotin's alignment, but he doesn't seem to be an evil figure. Expedition to the Ruins of Greyhawk has him arguing against unleashing the Invoked Devastation. He also threatens to destroy the world with a second Invoked Devastation when his apprentices—who unleashed the first one—try to return to the former Suel lands, though, so who knows.
I'm a simple man so I tend to imagine Slerotin and the other Mages of Power as pure-blooded Suel, although I wouldn't preclude them from being influenced by outside sources; The Shackled City Adventure Path puts a colony of spellweavers on the other side of the Crystalmists/Hellfurnaces who destroyed themselves using extraplanar magic… and not long after the Suel use the Invoked Devastation against the Baklunish. (On a somewhat related note I wonder what was the Baklunish equivalent name to "Mage of Power?")
I am intrigued at the thought that he didn't "die" but was swept away such as through a broken staff of power or the like—would explain his "spirit" reappearing in the Sea of Dust. I mean I can also see Slerotin's passage as an epic spell with one heck of a backlash, but I may have to save that alternate idea if I ever get a chance to referee a game again.
Maybe he's a beholder and he created his Passage using his disintegration ray.
…but now I'm imagining a half-dragon beholder …some sort of multi-eyed Dragon Ball shooting a Kamehameha-sized disintegrate.
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