Username Password
   or Create an Account
HomeForumsFAQArticlesReviewsDownloadsLinksTop 20Feedback
 Features
 
Greyhawk Wiki
Is Down :(


 
Canonfire :: View topic - Planar portals in Flanaess?
Planar portals in Flanaess?

 
Post new topic   Reply to topic    Canonfire Forum Index -> World of Greyhawk Discussion
View previous topic :: View next topic  

Planar portals in the Flanaess
They are common (several in every nation)
11%
 11%  [ 3 ]
They are uncommon (a few in every nation)
23%
 23%  [ 6 ]
They are rare
46%
 46%  [ 12 ]
They are very rare (only a few in the Flanaess)
11%
 11%  [ 3 ]
Some areas have plenty, some don't
7%
 7%  [ 2 ]
Total Votes : 26

Author Message
Sutemi
Journeyman Greytalker


Joined: Jan 21, 2010
Posts: 195

PostPosted: Thu Oct 16, 2014 12:44 am    Post subject: Planar portals in Flanaess? Reply with quote

Sigil is the City of Door with a magnitude on planar portals.
What about Flanaess? Since people seem to be more interested in answering polls than having an actual discussion, I have added one here...
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
SirXaris
GreySage


Joined: Jul 26, 2010
Posts: 2316
Location: LG Dyvers

PostPosted: Thu Oct 16, 2014 10:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I voted that they are uncommon as a middle ground.

In my campaign, there may be a few dozen portals to other planes across the Flanaess that are held by knowledgeable folks (sages, adventurers, etc.) as being commonly known of (their whereabouts and general destination, at least). However, there are also likely hundreds, or even thousands, of small portals hidden away across the nations and wilderness areas of the Flanaess that may be known to only a very few individuals or to no one at all.

Some of the commonly known ones that I can think of off the top of my head are those used by Iuz to bring demons to Oerth, one to Dungeonland in the Ruins of Castle Greyhawk and a few others down there besides, the various Fading Lands, the portal to the Demonweb Pits in the Fane of Lolth within the Vault of the Drow, the ship that is its own plane from A Paladin in Hell, the portal Tenser used to open a path to the Isle of the Ape (arguably temporary only), and a couple of portals to the Abyss on the Isle of Dread from The Savage Tide AP.

I am sure that there are at least a dozen more listed in official Greyhawk modules that I have missed, so they aren't too rare.

SirXaris
_________________
SirXaris' Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/SirXaris?ref=hl
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
rasgon
GreySage


Joined: Aug 03, 2001
Posts: 2769
Location: Michigan

PostPosted: Thu Oct 16, 2014 2:00 pm    Post subject: Re: Planar portals in Flanaess? Reply with quote

I'm not sure I'm up for listing every official portal on Oerth, but here are a few.

S4, Lost Caverns of Tsojcanth
- The Dark Labyrinth
- Armored Automatons
- Canyon of Centaurs
- Hall of Pentacles

Castle Greyhawk (various sources)
- Isle of the Ape
- Dungeonland
- Fraz-urb'luu's plane
- mirrorgate to Uerth (The Orb of Opposition)
- portal to Ravenloft
- portal to the Barrier Peaks
- demiplanes of the Ring of Five
- Jack Vance's Planet of Adventure (DMG p. 112)
- Greek mythology world (DMG p. 112)
- Barsoom
- cursed scroll to Starship Warden (Dragon #17)
- countless other possiblities, including the portals to Eternal Autumn, Demiplane of Flowers, Mumbai, Nessus, Limbo, Plane of Silly and Unused Monsters, and so on from WG7.

City of Greyhawk
- Odd Alley
- Heward's house
- World Serpent Inn (through the Wild Goose Tavern)
- Locked box in the Temple of Zagyg leads to the Maze of Zagyg on the Ethereal Plane (Treasures of Greyhawk)

Rel Mord
- Portal to Weird Way in Castle Fizziak (Night Arrant). "Instead of coming safely into the room that Lord Fizziak's mage had prepared for such travelers, Gord, Chert, Maheal, and the rest were suddenly dropped unceremoniously into the Great Hall."

The Bright Desert (Rary the Traitor)
- "Shembai Oasis: A Sulmish wizard once performed trans-planar experiments on this site, and the oasis' bad reputation is the result of a semi-active gate to the Abyss that still exists. Each night at sunset the gate produces 1-2 true, 1-4 greater, 2-8 lesser, or 2-12 least tanar'ri, who ravage the oasis and its vicinity, then vanish at dawn. The tanar'ri endeavor to drag any mortals they find back to the Abyss with them."

Dorakaa (Iuz the Evil)
- "In the north wing of [Iuz's] palace, the Blackspear Chamber is Iuz's Gate to the Abyss. Fiends are summoned through it and upon their return to the Abyss, the powerful nexus strengthens them so that effects such as barkskins, stoneskins, and enhanced magic resistance benefit the fiends for ld100 days after their return to the lower planes."

Fleichshriver (Iuz the Evil)
- "Finally, Fleichshriver has a gate to the Abyss which can only be utilized if an Archmage or High priestess is present."

Onyxgate (Ivid the Undying)
- "Since the site radiates the presence of conjuration/summoning magic strongly, it is clear that some form of gate to the Abyss must lie beneath the surface... Worse still, there are persistent rumors that a dark magical artifact is responsible for the gate, Xaene's inscrutable hand is at work in having placed it here."

The Malachite Throne (Ivid the Undying)
- "Once per week, if the correct command word is uttered, the throne can be used to open a gate to the uppermost of the Nine Hells. But it provides no protection against any being entering through that gate, and there is a 5% chance per use of bringing insanity to the person opening the gate."

The Causeway of Fiends (Ivid the Undying)
- "During the fullness of Celene, fiends of many kinds stalk the causeway. Tanar'ri and baatezu rend at each other, tearing each other apart. They gleefully attack anything foolish enough to approach within a half-mile or so of the causeway. The fiends appear to be bound to that distance, however, and cannot travel farther inland. Usually, but a handful of fiends will appear at full moon. Very rarely—perhaps once every 80 years or so—countless numbers of lemures, manes, dretches, and least fiends of all kinds will appear as great legions driven on by a few greater fiends."

Sea of Dust
- "Ancient Suloise documents in Greyhawk mention a magical portal named The Null somewhere in the Sea of Dust-a place that is a universal gate to all known planes. It is said to be guarded by golems, summoned extraplanar creatures, stone sphinxes that test the wisdom of those who would dare travel using its magic, and more." (From the Ashes)
- Lendor's Matrix? Is this the same as The Null? (The Scarlet Brotherhood)
- A rumored Empyreal Citadel connecting Oerth to the Upper Planes. (Warriors of Heaven, 11)

Welkwood
- The Faerie Court of Rings

Glorioles
- The Crypts of Iron Souls

Stark Mounds
- Mines of Dumathoin

Corusks
- portal to alternate Material Plane, possibly the world of the Kalevala.

Lortmils
- Moonarch of Sehanine

Gull Cliffs
- Blood Obelisk of Aerdy

Adri Forest (Ivid the Undying)
- portal to the City of the Summer Stars in the Coldwood

Mace and Talisman of Krevell (Ivid the Undying)
- Creates a gate to Nerull's plane once a week, and to the Negative Material Plane once a month.

Mounds of Dawn
- "In the depths of the Citadel are passages leading through the Yatils, entries to the underdark, portals to the Elemental Planes, and even (one-way) teleportation links to other mountain ranges."

Sulhaut Mountains
- "Many beings from the plane of elemental Earth prowl the valley, including dao of exceptional intelligence. It is highly likely that a gate to the plane of elemental Earth is somewhere in the area. "
- Vortices to the Quasielemental Plane of Lightning during storm season

Tenser's Tower
- Tenser's defenses include "planar gates woven into descending nets"

Carahast's Caves of Sleep
- "Dotting the caves are what scholars have termed microgates to the Negative Material Plane"

Abbor-Alz
- Lyzandred's tomb is a demiplane.
- portal to the location of a segment of the Rod of Seven Parts in the Eternal Storm of the Wind Dukes.

Hestmark Highlands
- Belching Vortex of Leuk-O

Nellix Town
- City of Dar-Kesh Anam

Irongate
- portal to Mitrik created by the Artificer's Union with Elayne Mystica and Bigby
- The World Serpent Inn, accessible through Helkam's Pit

Mitrik
- portal to Irongate

Burning Cliffs (Greyhawk Adventures)
- portal to the Elemental Plane of Fire near the City of Brass in the Burning Cliffs

Icegate (Iuz the Evil)
- "Icegate is an elliptical, interdicted cyst lying below a complex, mazed dungeon level said to be beholder- infested. It is whispered to have a gate capable of bringing forth gelugon baatezu from the Nine Hells, and to have been sacked by Oeridian servants of Pholtus and Heironeous some three hundred years ago."

The Flaming Mirror of Tenh (Greyhawk Adventures)
- portal to the Elemental Plane of Fire

Tapestry of Ekbir (Greyhawk Adventures)
- "The tapestry was intended to be a gate from Ekbir to the lower planes for disposal of its worst criminals. It is rumored, however, that the tapestry actually opens into a previously undiscovered plane and not one of the lower planes, although the landscape is bleak enough."

Wakeportal (Dungeon #147)
This fist-sized mass of crystal, if embedded in the prow of a ship, permits the vessel to travel to the Abyssinian Ocean (in the Abyss) once a day. If already in the Abyss, it can be used to move the ship back to its plane of departure.

Tovag Baragu
There are five rings of Tovag Baragu. Each ring corresponds to a moon or planet, which would also include Liga (the sun) if the Spelljammer cosmology is used, and the portals in it are only active (except in the case of outside influence, like Vecna's spells or those of his cultists, the Cup and Talisman of Al'Akbar, or the portal index from Die Vecna Die!) when that moon or planet is in the sky.

The innermost ring has 18 portals and corresponds to Celene.
The next ring has 8 portals and corresponds to Luna.
The next ring has 6 portals and corresponds to the sun.
The next ring has 23 portals and corresponds to Edill.
The outermost ring has 20 portals and corresponds to Gnibile.

If a heliocentric cosmology is used, another planet would influence the rings instead of the sun.

The portals of the inner ring are the only portals used in both Vecna Lives! and Die Vecna Die!. In Vecna Lives!, Vecna has opened them into five different times and places: ancient Flan-era Keoland, the Baklunish capital city just before the Invoked Devastation, his empire just before its fall, modern Dorakaa, and Citadel Cavitius on the Quasielemental Plane of Ash. In Die Vecna Die!, Vecna's disruption of the cosmology at the end of the adventure has resulted in the creation of numerous half-worlds, demiplanes that resemble alternate versions of Oerth, and the portals lead to those.
- "One of the most frequent is a glimpse of a great lakeside city, usually at night. Another is of a verdant plain crowded with the peculiar mammalian life which may be found on occasion near the Sulhauts. More rarely one may see or hear regions which must surely be those of the Outer Planes."

Csipros Erd
- Likely a natural vortex to the Choking Gale between the Paraelemental Plane of Ooze and the Quasielemental Plane of Steam.

Castle Maure
- Lost City of the Elders (via the Tome of the Black Heart)
- "Warlock’s Walk differs from any of the other dungeon levels in that it links to several demiplanes through four distinct portals." (Oerth Journal #23): Demiplane of Contingent Probabilities, Hollowwalk, Demiplane of Ambivalent Fury, Demiplane of Gloomwalk, The Solemn Vale.

The Star Cairns
- "During a critical point in their research, the first two wizards tested their findings simultaneously, creating an overlapping effect that interacted with the coincidental crash of the meteor in the Abbor-Alz; the cairn and all of its inhabitants were pulled into a juncture between the Astral, Ethereal and Prime Material planes... The cairn itself wanders between three phases - Ethereal, Border Ethereal and Astral - swinging like a pendulum between them every half-hour to an hour."

Amedio Jungle
- The Starry Mirror is a magic item created by the spell weavers of Vaprak's Voice. It resembles a pentagon-shaped mirror that distorts that which it reflects in an unsettling way, dotted with shimmering patches of star-like lights. It connects to the Plane of Mirrors and, originally, to a constellation of four other mirrors, although only one of the portals within still works today. The Starry Mirror can be passed through by anyone; it feels like a vertical surface of cold liquid. The spell weavers used the device to travel between five different locations in their ancient empire (Dungeon #104, 72-76).

Dim Forest
- Rift to the Plane of Shadow (Dragon #418)

Underdark
- Portal to the Abyss in the Fane of Lolth
- Portal to the Plane of Fire in the compound of the Female Fighters Society in Erelhei-Cinlu (Dead Gods)
- Nearby svirfneblin know of a vortex to the Elemental Plane of Earth (Dead Gods)
- a portal to the plane of Water, where Blibdoolpoolp dwells, in a shrine of the kuo-toa many miles distant

The Infinite Staircase
- A doorway to the Infinite Staircase in in the otherwise unattested tiny village of Certhis on Oerth in the wine cellar of the settlement's only inn, The Good Rest (Tales From the Infinite Staircase)

Sigil
- a portal to Sigil in a cave several hours from the Traveler's Rest, an inn maintained by worshipers of Fharlanghn. This appears in Expedition to the Demonweb Pits, though the exact location of the inn is up to the DM.
- An oblong shoal of rocks in the Nyr Dyv acts as a portal to the Seafarer's Arch in Sigil's Ditch, if the gate key is known (Polyhedron #137).

Fluffy Goes to Heck (Dungeon #4)
- portal to Heck. Sort of connected to Greyhawk via WG7.

Threshold of Evil (Dungeon #10)
- various portals. Sort of connected to Greyhawk via WG7 (the death slaad Zgotar appears in both). Includes portals to Limbo, Pandemonium, Dragonrealm, the Astral Plane, the Plane of Fire, Plane of Earth, Negative Material Plane, an unknown forested material plane, and a material plane ruled by a gynosphinx pharoah.

R3 Egg of the Phoenix
- The Terminal of Planes leads to the Positive Material, Negative Material, Prime Material, Ethereal, and the four cardinal elemental planes

C3 Lost Island of Castanamir
- The sinks in the kitchen drain into another plane. Probably the Ethereal, since that was Castanamir's specialty. The rooms on the island are connected by magical portals.

I7, Baltron's Beacon
- Teleportation chamber leads to the Isle of Banburn, a volcanic mountain, and elsewhere.

I11, Needle
- A magic obelisk is a portal to the moon

Tomb of Horrors
- The green demon mouth leads to a demiplane called The City That Waits if the key, a pinch of dust from Acererak's remains, is brought along.

Baton of Retribution (Trithereon's artifact)
- Barren desert of purple rock and green skies
- Swamp of milk-colored water with red plants
- Featureless plain of gray and black whose ground glows as if it were translucent fire and whose heavens are black and opaque.

Gate Island (Dragon #100)
- Battersea Park. London, England

The Vast Gate (The Gates of Firestorm Peak)
- Leads to the Far Realm. Connected to Oerth via reference to its duergar colony in Return to White Plume Mountain.

In general, vortices to the various inner planes will be found in areas of intense elemental concentration: volcanoes, storms, tornadoes, deserts,the hearts of mountains, the bottom of the sea, and so on. The Sea of Dust probably has vortices to the planes of Ash and Dust.

Astral conduits: (Manual of the Planes (1st edition), page 74: "Conduits are also called wormholes or gates. They usually have one mooring in the Prime Material and the other in a specific location in an outer plane... The Prime Material end is often a temple complex or other location dedicated to a particular power, while the other terminus is in a part of the realm ruled by that Power... the gates are often guarded, and the terminus location may not be friendly to the traveler."


Last edited by rasgon on Thu Jul 16, 2015 5:31 pm; edited 18 times in total
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message AIM Address
DMPrata
Master Greytalker


Joined: May 12, 2005
Posts: 792
Location: Woonsocket, RI, USA

PostPosted: Fri Oct 17, 2014 4:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Didn't Roger Moore write something on this topic way back in the halcyon days of AOL?
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
rasgon
GreySage


Joined: Aug 03, 2001
Posts: 2769
Location: Michigan

PostPosted: Fri Oct 17, 2014 4:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes. You can download it here.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message AIM Address
rasgon
GreySage


Joined: Aug 03, 2001
Posts: 2769
Location: Michigan

PostPosted: Mon Nov 24, 2014 8:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've expanded the list above considerably since I originally posted it, by the way.

An interesting question to me is where exactly some of these portals lead. Like the Blackspear Chamber in Iuz's palace leads to the Abyss, obviously, but where? On what layer? If the PCs go through the portal, what will they find? The Plain of Infinite Portals is a decent politically neutral place to target without showing too much favoritism to either Graz'zt or Pazuzu and as the layer closest to the Astral Plane it's probably the easiest place to open a gate to. Does Iuz have his own fortress there, guarded by one of his own minions? There's also Durao, much deeper in the Abyss, known for being used as an embarkation point to the Blood War; that's a politically neutral layer too, I think.

Fleichshriver seems most likely to lead to the eighth layer of the Abyss, Skin-Shedder, realm of Volisupula the Flensed Marquesse. I'm basing this mainly on the name, honestly; there's a nice synchronicity between Skin-Shedder and Fleichshriver, though they don't mean exactly the same thing, at least not in a literal sense. Skin-Shedder is supposed to be a realm in which all who venture in (except for tieflings) are slowly corrupted into chaos and evil just from being there. A shriver is a confessor, and I suppose the layer could be a perverse form of shriving that taints instead of purifies. Fleisch is German for flesh. We don't know much about Volisupula, the Abyssal lord of finery and ostentatious ceremony, but he/she has presumably had their flesh and blubber stripped away. The adventure in Planes of Chaos that features Volisupula is about a githzerai trying to invade Volisupula's Abyssal fortress and use it as a new home for his people (he's just kind of assuming he'll find others of his species willing to go along with this, as unlikely as it might seem). The portal in Fleichshriver might lead to an elaborate and decadent palace which may or may not be suffering from a githzerai invasion.

Onyxgate is harder to guess at. I'm not sure what Xaene would want from the Abyss, but given his curse Demogorgon's realm might be an appropriate destination. If nothing else, Demogorgon has a library full of lost secrets that Xaene might want access to, though I'm sure the gate doesn't lead there directly.

Roger E. Moore's article on gates speculates that most of the Tsojcanth portals lead to various places on the moon Celene, while the Canyon of Centaurs is a parallel world based on Greek myth where Iggwilv might have recovered from her duel with Graz'zt under the guise of the enchantress Circe.

The Malachite Throne explicitly leads to Hell's first layer. The most likely location for the Overking or his representatives to visit is probably a fortress ruled by the pit fiend Zuchanx, who serves Baalzephon. This might be part of Bel's Bronze Citadel or it might be elsewhere in Avernus. Baalzephon has a household in the Bronze Citadel, according to Fiendish Codex II.

The Causeway of Fiends seems to be inspired by the Giant's Causeway in Ireland, but, you know, with fiends instead of giants. Can player characters from Oerth use it to travel to the planes or does it only work for fiends? It's not clear. Presumably one side of the causeway leads to the Abyss and the other to the Hells, though they might lead to other intermediate lower planes instead, and the destinations might change depending on the cycles of the planets. The Ur-Flannae must have constructed it long ago in order to bring their fiendish minions into the world (or did they just take advantage of a structure made by some even older race?), but they lost control of it and now it's used by the demons and devils in their endless wars. It's tempting to compare it to the Bridge of Gehenna, said to be the only way to cross the River Styx on that plane, and imagine that the structure somehow exists simultaneously as a bridge on Gehenna and a causeway on Oerth. I'm not sure where the number "every 80 years or so" comes from. None of the planets in Greyspace takes 80 years to orbit Oerth; the longest one is the Spectre, which takes 37 and a half years. The Habitat, which isn't a planet (it might be the Warden from Metamorphosis Alpha) takes about 66 years to orbit Oerth. It must be some combination of celestial bodies going into some rare conjunction, perhaps in a specific constellation. More research required. There might be Ur-Flan ruins on whatever planes the Causeway of Fiends link to.

I'm convinced the City of Summer Stars is currently in Ravenloft.

Icegate clearly leads somewhere in Cania, Mephistopheles's realm. Perhaps it leads to Nebulat, an ice devil citadel, or near the portal that connects Cania to Nessus.

We don't even know what plane the Tapestry of Ekbir leads to, but wherever it is there are apparently some Baklunish criminals there. Tarterus is a possibility.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message AIM Address
smillan_31
Grandmaster Greytalker


Joined: Nov 07, 2004
Posts: 1817
Location: Mt. Smolderac

PostPosted: Thu Dec 04, 2014 8:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wow! Catching up on post reading, and this is some great stuff, Rasgon. Thanks! Smile
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
rasgon
GreySage


Joined: Aug 03, 2001
Posts: 2769
Location: Michigan

PostPosted: Fri Dec 05, 2014 7:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

rasgon wrote:
None of the planets in Greyspace takes 80 years to orbit Oerth; the longest one is the Spectre, which takes 37 and a half years. The Habitat, which isn't a planet (it might be the Warden from Metamorphosis Alpha) takes about 66 years to orbit Oerth. It must be some combination of celestial bodies going into some rare conjunction, perhaps in a specific constellation. More research required.


Okay, the Grinder (Greyspace's asteroid belt) orbits Oerth once every two years, so if the Spectre, Celene, and one of the Grinder's asteroids (the Reaper, maybe) are all in syzygy on Richfest 4, 516 CY, then the Reaper and the Spectre are in opposition on Needfest 4, 554 CY and they're all in syzygy again on Richfest 4, 591 CY. This syzygy occurs once every 75 years, which is close enough to the "perhaps once every 80 years or so" given in Ivid the Undying. So four times a year, when Celene is full, the gates to the Lower Planes open a crack in the Causeway of Fiends, just enough for a handful to get through before they close. Once every 75 years, when the Spectre is in conjunction with the Reaper (this doesn't have to be in Richfest, it can be any time Celene is full) the gates to the Lower Planes open wide and entire fiendish armies can use the passage to launch an assault on their counterparts.

Alternatively, the planet Ginsel takes 15 years to complete a circuit of Oerth, so it orbits Oerth five times every time the Spectre orbits twice. They'd come into syzygy with Celene once every 75 years, just like the Spectre and Reaper, so those two planets would work just as well as the planet and asteroid would (maybe better, since it's a planet and not a mere asteroid).

Obviously they should come into conjunction on whatever year is convenient for your campaign, not necessarily 591 CY.

Even if the Ur-Flan didn't build fortresses on the lower planes, it's sensible for the fiends themselves to build fortifications around the other sides of the gates. Even when armies aren't using them, they probably don't want smaller numbers of fiends getting through either, so there'll probably always be at least a light garrison unless some significant distraction calls them away. PCs who want to use the Causeway of Fiends to invade the Lower Planes will likely have to get past the fiendish guards on the other side, then. Richfest 4 seems like an appropriate date because all the lycanthropes are loose and it's supposed to be a time for events of great portent.

It's tempting to devise an astrology of the planes to use as a general guide for what sorts of portals, astral conduits, and inner planar vortices might be open at which parts of the year. Maybe inner planar connections are tied to the phases of Luna and outer planar connections are tied to the phases of Celene.

Oh, also I added the Lost City of Dar-Kesh Anam and the Belching Vortex of Leuk-O, both from Living Greyhawk Journal #1, to the above list.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message AIM Address
DMPrata
Master Greytalker


Joined: May 12, 2005
Posts: 792
Location: Woonsocket, RI, USA

PostPosted: Sat Dec 06, 2014 8:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

rasgon wrote:
Okay, the Grinder (Greyspace's asteroid belt) orbits Oerth once every two years, so if the Spectre, Celene, and one of the Grinder's asteroids (the Reaper, maybe) are all in syzygy on Richfest 4, 516 CY, then the Reaper and the Spectre are in opposition on Needfest 4, 554 CY and they're all in syzygy again on Richfest 4, 591 CY. This syzygy occurs once every 75 years, which is close enough to the "perhaps once every 80 years or so" given in Ivid the Undying. So four times a year, when Celene is full, the gates to the Lower Planes open a crack in the Causeway of Fiends, just enough for a handful to get through before they close. Once every 75 years, when the Spectre is in conjunction with the Reaper (this doesn't have to be in Richfest, it can be any time Celene is full) the gates to the Lower Planes open wide and entire fiendish armies can use the passage to launch an assault on their counterparts.

Alternatively, the planet Ginsel takes 15 years to complete a circuit of Oerth, so it orbits Oerth five times every time the Spectre orbits twice. They'd come into syzygy with Celene once every 75 years, just like the Spectre and Reaper, so those two planets would work just as well as the planet and asteroid would (maybe better, since it's a planet and not a mere asteroid).

Obviously they should come into conjunction on whatever year is convenient for your campaign, not necessarily 591 CY.

Even if the Ur-Flan didn't build fortresses on the lower planes, it's sensible for the fiends themselves to build fortifications around the other sides of the gates. Even when armies aren't using them, they probably don't want smaller numbers of fiends getting through either, so there'll probably always be at least a light garrison unless some significant distraction calls them away. PCs who want to use the Causeway of Fiends to invade the Lower Planes will likely have to get past the fiendish guards on the other side, then. Richfest 4 seems like an appropriate date because all the lycanthropes are loose and it's supposed to be a time for events of great portent.

It's tempting to devise an astrology of the planes to use as a general guide for what sorts of portals, astral conduits, and inner planar vortices might be open at which parts of the year. Maybe inner planar connections are tied to the phases of Luna and outer planar connections are tied to the phases of Celene.

Oh, also I added the Lost City of Dar-Kesh Anam and the Belching Vortex of Leuk-O, both from Living Greyhawk Journal #1, to the above list.

How about timing this syzygy to coincide with 11 Goodmonth 585, when Iggwilv tries to gate in an army of fiends from Luna?
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
rasgon
GreySage


Joined: Aug 03, 2001
Posts: 2769
Location: Michigan

PostPosted: Sat Dec 06, 2014 2:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I was thinking about planetary/planar conjunctions in general and wondering about the Return of the Eight plot, but I think that has to be a separate celestial event from the one associated with the appearance of lower planar armies on the Causeway of Fiends. The Causeway is supposed to open when Celene is full, but Celene is new on Goodmonth 11. If there's a celestial conjunction on Goodmonth 11, 585, there's no reason it has to reoccur around 80 years or so as long as it's relatively rare.

The Vecna: Hand of the Revenant comic includes the double new moons on Goodmonth 11 as a major plot element. Vecna chooses this night to attack Fleeth because the power of the priests of Pholtus will be at its lowest ebb. The comic claims this happens only once every twelve years, which is wrong unless there's something else going on at the same time that makes this Dark Night special. There's nothing in canon Greyspace with a twelve year cycle, though. One possibility is that one of the "dark stars," which are something like spheres of annihilation, miles across, that exist in Greyspace beyond the orbit of the Spectre, comes into conjunction with Celene and Luna every twelve years.

As far as the Causeway of Fiends goes, an alternative to my above theories is to use the Dragon's Tear comet from The Gates of Firestorm Peak, which is associated with the opening of the Vast Gate. That object appears in the sky every 27 years, so three cycles would be 81 years, even closer to the "perhaps once every 80 years or so" than 75 years is. The only question is what makes every third appearance more significant than the other two. Maybe the comet has a spiral path that each time brings it in front of a different constellation, 120 degrees apart in the sky, and the Causeway only opens fully when the Dragon's Tear appears in the Constellation of the Boar (or the Constellation of the Demon or whatever) every 81 years. Or maybe its appearance only coincides with the fullness of Celene every 81 years. Maybe it's simply closer to Oerth every 81 years. Its irregular path could be a result of Elder Elf tampering millennia ago, or maybe its usual orbit is derailed by the cycle of one of the Dark Stars.

Some other notes on celestial conjunctions below. Note that this is just when celestial bodies reappear in a specific spot, not every time their paths cross each other.

Every three cycles of Edill corresponds to ten years.
Conatha orbits every ten years.
Conatha and Edill come into conjunction every ten years.
Every three cycles of Gnibile corresponds to sixteen years.
Conatha and Gnibile come into conjunction every 160 years.
Ginsel orbits every 15 years.
Borka orbits every 20 years.
Conatha and Borka come into conjunction every 20 years.
Edill and Borka come into conjunction every 20 years.
The Spectre orbits every 37 and a half years. It orbits twice in 75 years.
The Spectre comes into conjunction with Conatha and Edill once every 150 years.
Ginsel orbits five times every time the Spectre orbits twice. Ginsel and the Spectre come into conjunction every 75 years.
The Dragon's Tear Comet appears every 27 years. It would only sync up with Edill and Conatha every 270 years. It would sync up with Ginsel every 135 years.
The Sisters orbit Oerth in 33 and a third years, or three times per century. They come into conjunction with other planets (Edill, Conatha, Borka) once a century.
Greela orbits every 30 years.
In that time, Edill orbits nine times and Conatha orbits three times.
Ginsel orbits twice every time Greela orbits once, and they come into conjunction every 30 years.
Borka orbits three times in the time it takes for Greela to orbit twice. They come into conjunction every 60 years. In that time, Ginsel orbits three times.
Greela orbits five times every time the Spectre orbits twice. They come into conjunction every 150 years.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message AIM Address
mindseye
Apprentice Greytalker


Joined: Oct 09, 2014
Posts: 26

PostPosted: Mon Dec 08, 2014 9:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

So does all this celestial information on Greyspace come from Spelljammer books or some other source?
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
rasgon
GreySage


Joined: Aug 03, 2001
Posts: 2769
Location: Michigan

PostPosted: Mon Dec 08, 2014 5:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It comes from the Spelljammer accessory Greyspace, yes, except for the Dragon's Tear comet, which is from The Gates of Firestorm Peak (which isn't exactly a Greyhawk module, but I find debates about canon boring; use it or don't).

To be clear, Greyspace tells us how long it takes for each planet to orbit Oerth, and I'm extrapolating based on the assumption that they were all at one point in conjunction. I'm also assuming that references to months are intended to mean "one twelfth of a year" rather than "four weeks" since otherwise the existence of the festival weeks would screw things up. Since basically Spelljammer has a standard format that doesn't take into account Oerth's unique calendar.

As mentioned, the mention of a 12 year cycle involving Dark Night is from the comic Vecna: Hand of the Revenant and the plot where Iggwilv and Tuerny try to summon a demonic horde on Goodmonth 11 is Return of the Eight.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message AIM Address
grodog
CF Admin
CF Admin


Joined: Jun 29, 2001
Posts: 1187
Location: Wichita, KS, USA

PostPosted: Thu Jan 15, 2015 9:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

A fabulous, and very timely thread, Rip. Thank you for sharing all of your research, as always!

I'll add a few more gates to your listing for Castle Greyhawk over the weekend =)
_________________
Allan Grohe (grodog@gmail.com)
http://www.greyhawkonline.com/grodog/greyhawk.html
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website AIM Address
grodog
CF Admin
CF Admin


Joined: Jun 29, 2001
Posts: 1187
Location: Wichita, KS, USA

PostPosted: Mon Apr 10, 2017 6:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

grodog wrote:
A fabulous, and very timely thread, Rip. Thank you for sharing all of your research, as always!

I'll add a few more gates to your listing for Castle Greyhawk over the weekend =)


Or, a couple of years later.... Embarassed

rasgon wrote:
I'm not sure I'm up for listing every official portal on Oerth, but here are a few.

S4, Lost Caverns of Tsojcanth
- The Dark Labyrinth
- Armored Automatons
- Canyon of Centaurs
- Hall of Pentacles


The Canyon of Centaurs was a nod to RJK's Greek "Horsing Around" Level from the Expanded Castle Greyhawk, and I'm pretty sure that the Hall of Pentacles was the encounter excerpted from the Expanded Castle level (the Hall of Pools) where Erac died.

That does make me wonder whether the other two were also from Castle Greyhawk set piece encounters, perhaps, but I've not heard anything one way or the other to that effect.

rasgon wrote:
Castle Greyhawk (various sources)
- Isle of the Ape
- Dungeonland
- Fraz-urb'luu's plane
- mirrorgate to Uerth (The Orb of Opposition)
- portal to Ravenloft
- portal to the Barrier Peaks
- demiplanes of the Ring of Five
- Jack Vance's Planet of Adventure (DMG p. 112)
- Greek mythology world (DMG p. 112)
- Barsoom
- cursed scroll to Starship Warden (Dragon #17)
- countless other possiblities, including the portals to Eternal Autumn, Demiplane of Flowers, Mumbai, Nessus, Limbo, Plane of Silly and Unused Monsters, and so on from WG7.


Ignoring WG7 and WGR4 and EttRoG, otherworldly destinations for gates in the Original and Expanded Castles Greyhawk included:

- Bottle City (on level 2 of the Expanded Castle)
- Melnibone
- Oz
- Asgard
- Demonworld (from RJK's Kalibruhn campaign)
- Barsoom (also placed inside the caves outside of the Storerooms level in Castle Zagyg)
- Tschai, Planet of Adventure
- A Midsummer Night's Nightmare (UK-based faeries/folklore level)
- an underwater level

Isle of the Ape was "Monkeying Around," the Greek level was "Horsing Around," and the "Fooling Around" or "Clowning Around" level was apparently never developed much per http://piedpiperpublishing.yuku.com/topic/2035#.WOuUKWe1uCg Other mentions at http://www.enworld.org/forum/showthread.php?22566-Q-amp-A-with-Gary-Gygax&p=2214819&viewfull=1#post2214819 and http://www.enworld.org/forum/showthread.php?22566-Q-amp-A-with-Gary-Gygax&p=2762099&viewfull=1#post2762099 and http://www.enworld.org/forum/showthread.php?22566-Q-amp-A-with-Gary-Gygax&p=2579970&viewfull=1#post2579970

I'm not sure that there was a permanent gate to Fraz-Urb-luu's plane in the castle, since when he was freed he whisked away Erac's Cousin and Aylerarch (or however it's spelled) there himself.

There was a portal to Arneson's City of the Gods site, via an 8th level from Castle ERK; this may or may not have been incorporated into the Expanded Greyhawk Castle, but may have been a part of the Temple of the Latter Day Old Ones, instead; more info in the entry for the latter in the El Raja Kay Archive.

Allan.
_________________
Allan Grohe (grodog@gmail.com)
http://www.greyhawkonline.com/grodog/greyhawk.html


Last edited by grodog on Mon Apr 10, 2017 6:57 am; edited 1 time in total
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website AIM Address
grodog
CF Admin
CF Admin


Joined: Jun 29, 2001
Posts: 1187
Location: Wichita, KS, USA

PostPosted: Mon Apr 10, 2017 6:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

rasgon wrote:
I've expanded the list above considerably since I originally posted it, by the way.


I assume that the list @ http://www.canonfire.com/cf/modules.php?name=Forums&file=viewtopic&p=70603&sid=24eb4050d52fb1ecc6cf335e6da42199#70603 is the current one, then?

Allan.
_________________
Allan Grohe (grodog@gmail.com)
http://www.greyhawkonline.com/grodog/greyhawk.html
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website AIM Address
rasgon
GreySage


Joined: Aug 03, 2001
Posts: 2769
Location: Michigan

PostPosted: Mon Apr 10, 2017 7:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

grodog wrote:
rasgon wrote:
I've expanded the list above considerably since I originally posted it, by the way.


I assume that the list @ http://www.canonfire.com/cf/modules.php?name=Forums&file=viewtopic&p=70603&sid=24eb4050d52fb1ecc6cf335e6da42199#70603 is the current one, then?

Allan.


Looks like the one above has a Rary the Traitor reference that the one you linked to doesn't, as well as Wakeportal. But I added another post to the other thread that isn't replicated here.

grodog wrote:
I'm not sure that there was a permanent gate to Fraz-Urb-luu's plane in the castle, since when he was freed he whisked away Erac's Cousin and Aylerarch (or however it's spelled) there himself.


The permanent portal to Fraz'Urb'luu's realm is from Return to the Ruins of Greyhawk. It makes sense that the original Castle Greyhawk wouldn't have one.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message AIM Address
rasgon
GreySage


Joined: Aug 03, 2001
Posts: 2769
Location: Michigan

PostPosted: Mon Apr 10, 2017 1:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

rasgon wrote:
The innermost ring has 18 portals and corresponds to Celene.
The next ring has 8 portals and corresponds to Luna.
The next ring has 6 portals and corresponds to the sun.
The next ring has 23 portals and corresponds to Edill.
The outermost ring has 20 portals and corresponds to Gnibile.

If a heliocentric cosmology is used, another planet would influence the rings instead of the sun.


In case I wasn't clear, this is speculative. Greyhawk Adventures says "Each circle is linked to a particular moon or planet and operates only when it is visible in the sky" but doesn't state which circle is linked to which moon or planet. The above seems reasonable, though.


Last edited by rasgon on Mon Apr 10, 2017 1:31 pm; edited 1 time in total
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message AIM Address
Saracenus
Adept Greytalker


Joined: Nov 28, 2006
Posts: 307
Location: Barony of Trellwood, The Great Kingdom

PostPosted: Mon Apr 10, 2017 1:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Removed content by author. Reference was already in the original post.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
Display posts from previous:   
Post new topic   Reply to topic    Canonfire Forum Index -> World of Greyhawk Discussion 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


Canonfire phpBB2 theme by Jakob Persson (http://www.eddingschronicles.com).
Powered by phpBB © 2001 phpBB Group
All times are GMT - 8 Hours
Stone textures by Patty Herford
Ported for PHP-Nuke by nukemods.com
Forums ©


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

Contact the Webmaster.  Long Live Spidasa!

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: 0.28 Seconds