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An Alternative View of the Greyhawk Wars
Posted on Sat, October 26, 2002 by Trickster
CruelSummerLord writes "Varying historical accounts arise of the Greyhawk Wars, many deriving from the official version. How else did the history of this dangerous time turn out...?

Author: CruelSummerLord


An Alternative View of the Greyhawk Wars
By CruelSummerLord (umaroyeti@hotmail.com)
(Used with permission. Do not repost or redistribute without the express permission of the author.)

Respected Sir Pluffet;

I have noted the atrocious quality of a certain article in the canonfire section of the Great Library of Greyhawk-that which details an alternate view of the Greyhawk Wars. Its prose is horrible, and its content is poorly defined and grossly inaccurate. Hence, I should like to send the proper version to you, possibly before I send it to Respected Iquander in Greyhawk. As a fellow scholar of Rel Mord, perhaps you can give some input on this article:

The Flanaess, as you no doubt know, was an armed camp in the years leading up to 582 CY. Stonefist rumbled against the Tenha and the Pale, our own Nyrond fought with both Urnst and Aerdy in word with constant saber-rattling, giants loomed in the Crystalmists, Iuz, the Shield Lands, the Bandits, and the Horned Society bickered in the north. Hence came the first blows of the Greyhawk Wars...

Iuz had taken time to rebuild his "empire", but he need not have bothered in the first place. His treachery, with the demonic attack he was preparing for the Hierarchs failed miserably in the advent of the Temple of Elemental Evil's fall, and so it was the Horned Society who, after conquering the Shield Lands, turned on him and attacked Iuz. Trememendous anarchy erupted across the demigod's lands as rebellious humanoids, stirred up by tribal shamans, turned on their brethren and the human overlords of Iuz. Some Bandit Kingdoms turned into this as well, as the Pale, Tenh and the Hold of Stonefist erupted into war.

The Tenha fought valiantly against both its enemy states, as well as certain Bandit holds, even as the Horned Society was crushing its enemies with the blood-soaked, anarchistic fields of Iuz collapsing. Furyondy fought valiantly against Horned troops, as Belvor IV flung everything he could to stop the vicious facists of the Society. Ket, as part of one of Iuz's original plans, attacked and conquered Bissel in 584 CY, but with the general ruin of Iuz's plans, as well as his attempt to charm Sevvord Redbeard, Ket was soon left with a conquered territory and no demigod to guide them, as Iuz fled to the Abyss and most of his agents began carving out chaotic territories in places like the Grandwood, the Gull Cliffs, the Kron Hills, and the Vesve Forest. In regions where most of the army units were fighting elsewhere, the Cells committed widespread rape and looting, although of course they have yet to establish their full strength.

Our own Nyrond was forced to fight for its life as Almor was smashed and ruined by the massive forces of Ivid V, who had maneuvered his kinsmen into position to attack us. Almor fell, and Sunndi nearly did. The battle raged for years, as Archbold III continued to put more and more resources into the army and the treasury.

The Scarlet Brotherhood's attacks, surprisingly, were a miserable failure, caused mainly by schisms between the law and neutral-aligned brothers and their evil counterparts. The Black Brotherhood, dedicated to Tharizdun, also undermined the Scarlet Sign's efforts, as the Sea Princes, Idee, and Onnwal easily repelled the overtures of the Scarlet Ones. However, the Scarlet Sign did succeed in whipping the slaves of the Sea Princes into a frenzy, and that realm was plunged into chaos.

You know, no doubt, of Turrosh Mak, the powerful dictator who conquered the Wild Coast as in official accounts. He certainly did this, and no more need be said of it, save that a Cell of Iuz now exists in the Suss Forest, threatening his efforts in the western end of his empire. At this time, of course, Celene closed its doors and declared neutrality in all affairs.

Geoff, Sterich and the Yeomanry were attacked by hordes of giants and humanoids, who were vast in numbers but poorly led and organized. The leaders of the alliance, Nosnra the Hill Chief, Grugnur the Frost Jarl, and King Snurre Iron Belly were all dead, and so the alliance was chaotic and repelled without its leaders, although the westerners suffered badly, especially since Keoland did not come to their aid until several weeks after the fighting began.

The Lordship of the Isles, with aid from the neutral Scarlet Ones, seceded from the Iron League, as Latmac Ranold was deposed and replaced by Frolmar Ingerskatti, who was more eager to trade with the Scarlet Ones, help them against the Black Brotherhood, and make known the power of the Suel heritage.

The fighting between the Golden League and Aerdy was terrible, bloody, and cost the lives of nearly a hundred thousand brave warriors in total. Idee was soon crushed by South Province and Chelor, Onnwal nearly so, and Irongate was put under siege once again. Almor was divided between Nyrond and the Great Kingdom, with only a small fraction of their territory remaining under Kevont's control. Ivid continued to press more and more to crush his enemies, ignorant of the anti-Naelax forces who sought to topple him from the Malachite Throne. This began a civil war at home, which, of course, culminated in the empire shattering into several pieces. Medegia was ruined, and the North and South Provinces were left to mull over their futures. The high elves of the Spindrifts chased away the inhabitants of Lo Reltarma, in order for the islands to serve as the holy ground for the high elves, in particular the church of Sehanine Moonbow.

No doubt the Circle of Eight did much to keep things from getting worse than this, but the treason of Rary of the Circle of Eight was legendary. With Tenser and Otiluke killed, he fled with Lord Robilar to establish his burgeoning kingdom in the Bright Desert.

In 585 CY, of course, the whole world was weary of war. The Pact of Greyhwk was signed, but the Flanaess was changed forever. The Horned Empire now covered old Iuz, the Shield Lands, some Bandit Kingdoms, and part of Furyondy. Tenh had lost Redspan and the Phostwood to the Pale. Stonehold was ravaged by the Suel barbarians and humanoid forces, as Redbeard withdrew from Tenh after widespread looting to savage the enemies of his homeland. Geoff and Sterich, blooded badly and furious at Keoland's lack of aid, talked longly and loudly of seceding from the Throne of the Lion, even as their noble houses were in serious disarray, Querchard having disappeared in the fighting and many nobles slain.

Ket now controlled most of Bissel, and South Province eventually reorganized itself as the United Kingdom of Ahlissa, annexing the shattered Idee and making an attempt for the damaged Onnwal. The Lordship of the Isles threw its lot in with the politically neutral Scarlet Sign, as the Black Brotherhood was an invisible force that threatened the whole of the southland with entropy. Turrosh Mak had conquered the Wild Coast, and still clashed with the Principality of Ulek and the Cell of Iuz in the Suss. Smouldering combats took place as the Cells of Iuz were established. Sunndi was delcared a kingdom of full stature equal to Nyrond and Furyondy. Nyrond, of course, nearly collapsed, bankrupted from the fighting. Prince Sewardnt tried to seize the throne, as you no doubt remember, only to be thwarted by Crown Prince Lynwerd, who took the throne in 588 CY. Ivid no longer seems to have control over North or South Province, and Lord Drax has been talking of the Solnor Compact. Bone March is now back in the hands of men, although both North Kingdom and Ratik eye each other warily across a tense border.

The Sea Princes are still in anarchy. The Horned Empire threatens some Bandit Kingdoms, the Pale, Furyondy, and Tenh. Greyhawk has to deal with a Cell of Iuz in the Abbor-Alz, and the Orcish Empire on its southern border. North Province reorgainzed itslef as the "Great Kingdom of Northern Aerdy". Some say Ivid V still survives in Rauxes, but this is uncertain as some are still thought to be fighting for the Malachite Throne and the lands around the Grandwood. Keoland must deal with angry vassal states demanding full autonomy. Nyrond is still in terrible economic straits. Idee, the Sea Princes, the Shield Lands, Bissel, Bone March, and Almor have all been changed forever, if not outright destroyed.

I ask you, what lies ahead for the Flanaess?

Yours faithfully,
The Brother of the Cruel Summer.

Editor's Note: Jared's article is a complete update and rewrite of an earlier article he wrote (View it here). Thus, you can see that his friendly jab at past articles in the Canonfire! database is at his own expense - richadmin "
 
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Re: An Alternative View of the Greyhawk Wars (Score: 1)
by Jachyras (Jachyras@comcast.net) on Mon, October 28, 2002
(User Info | Send a Message) http://mywpages.comcast.net/jachyras/index.htm
You put a lot of work into this article but I don't think anything you wrote could have come true, at least IMC. I needed to tweak the published material for my campaign but not as much as you proposed here. Only a few minor things were changed but I found the published material to be logical and consistent with the campaign I run. I'd use this material for an "alternate" Oerth if I used them, but I don't.



Re: An Alternative View of the Greyhawk Wars (Score: 1)
by SirXaris on Sun, March 27, 2011
(User Info | Send a Message) http://https://www.facebook.com/SirXaris?ref=hl
My favorite part of this article, CSL, is that you have the Horned Society coming out on top of Iuz.  I have always felt that having a Demi-god right there in the Flaness was a bit over the top.  As long as he just ruled a small nation, it was tolerable and managable.  From the Ashes, saw him gain so much power that it seemed inevitable that he would eventually gain so much as to be completely unassailable by his enemies and all of Oerik being thus doomed to his dominion.  So, I prefer Iuz to be a creature with difficulty finding resources and the inability to make efficient use of them (Chaotic Evil), thus his power remains limited.

However, I disapprove of the Dark Brotherhood.  It's funny, but I initially went that route myself - Clerics of the Scarlet Brotherhood pretend to worship the Suel pantheon, but secretly worship Dread Tharizdun.  Unfortunately, that only caused a problem similar to that of an ascendant Iuz - what sane individual would willingly work to bring about entropy?  Tharizdun, being an unconscious god of entropy, chaos, and madness, has an even more difficult time efficiently organizing any of his incredibly few resources.  There may be a handful of truly insane individuals across the Flaness that wish to awaken a god that will destroy everything, them included, but no more than a handful.  They would necessarily have been driven mad if they weren't already, by contact with the god's consciousness.

Anyway, I like how you adapted From the Ashes canon to your twists as much as possible.  My biggest problem with From the Ashes (besides Iuz ascendant) was the destruction of several of the signature nations of the Flaness (Rovers of the Barrens, Tenh, Geoff, Sterich, Hold of the Sea Princes, etc.).  My solution has been to simply begin each campaign about 570 CY and end it before the Wars begin.  Your solution does well to address those issues and I compliment you on it. :)

SirXaris




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