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.
Its position seems to be that all giants originate in the fuzzy west of Oerik, but nothing solid (exacting) about firbolg current locations. Any material out there about large encampments/strongholds of firbolgs? Haven't found anything online.
I have a player who is interested in playing a firbolg in a Greyhawk campaign, and i may actually allow it. Thus, the query.
I tend to think of the Firbolg as Viking-like in their culture, so in my campaign, they have enclaves in all of the evergreen forests across the Flanaess. There is a large number of them living in the Vesve, as well, and the Adri Forest is the farthest forest south to have them living in large numbers. If they are found in the other deciduous forests on Oerth, it is only in small groups.
"In medieval Irish myth, the Fir Bolg (also spelt Firbolg and Fir Bholg) are the fourth group of people to settle in Ireland. They are descended from the Muintir Nemid, an earlier group who abandoned Ireland and went to different parts of Europe. Those who went to Greece become the Fir Bolg and eventually return to the now-uninhabited Ireland. After ruling it for some time, they are overthrown by the invading Tuatha Dé Danann . . . It is suggested by John Rhys and R. A. Stewart Macalister that the Fir Bolg are the Fomorians (Fomoire) under another guise."
The Firbolg is just one of many races as "real world" mythology that Gygax formatted for the game. For D&D specifically, it depends on the rules Edition you're using, as they were changed over time.
"Among their own kind, they live in colonies, which are usually found in forests or caverns and watched by guard towers . . . Firbolgs resemble humans . . . When reintroduced for the fifth edition, firbolgs were changed to more closely resemble elves . . ."
Given their origin, I think of them as sort of Celtic in culture. I imagined they had a kingdom in what is now Geoff before the coming of the Flan. Living Greyhawk has it that giants ruled the region (including the Crystalmists, Barrier Peaks, and Stark Mounds and surrounding valleys) until the Flan, under the druid-king Llywellyn, drove them back to the mountains a hundred years before the Flan Tracking calendar began.
Of course, it wasn't exclusively firbolg ruling the region, but I imagine that the firbolg kingdom was an important force in the forests there. Probably many of them dwell in the Oytwood and the Stark Mounds today.
The Monstrous Manual said, "Firbolgs live off the land and with it. Their homes are built from trees cleared from around the house. The clan does keep a field for harvest. but only enough to supplement their diet. They trade tasks involving great strength for food, usually with other peaceful folk in the forests or hills. The rest of their food is obtained by gathering and hunting an area up to 20 miles from their homestead."
The Complete Book of Humanoids said, "These great giant-kin live in remote forests and hills. They distrust most other civilized races and tend to avoid them whenever possible. They get along with druids and faerie creatures, including elves. They do not attack or kill without reason, but they love to engage in pranks which relieve strangers of their valuables."
Monster Mythology has it that Hiatea, the giantish goddess of nature, was raised by firbolgs before she knew her true parentage, and they revere her to this day. Glenn Dammerung's idea that the firbolgs worship Karontor isn't supported in canon (Karontor is the patron of the fomorians and verbeeg, not the firbolgs).
Thanks much to all for the feedback. As i thought, nothing really extensive/official out there on the Firbolgs, so i'm on my own with their material. Has both good and bad aspects, but looking forward to playing with it.
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