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Quoth the Raven #22 - discussion 
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Evil Genius
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Post Re: Quoth the Raven #22 - discussion
The Lesser Evil wrote:
Another possible bug: First Mate Laszlo Durakes is listed as a darkling. Darklings are normally trapped in one domain, right?
there have been contradictory descriptions in different products. Some sources say they are trapped in one domain. Some say they can't enter the Mists, so they are stuck in a single Mist-bound region like the Core or a cluster. But regardless, wherever the Relentless goes becomes part of the Sea of Sorrows temporarily. It's up to you if you want to confine him to the ship or let him take shore leave like the others, depending on how you interpret the Darkling rules. (besides, he's a ghost, so who knows if the Darkling curse still holds?)

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Mon Nov 02, 2015 7:20 am
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Evil Genius
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Post Re: Quoth the Raven #22 - discussion
Ustalav is quite well developed and I think it is the first domain we have from Pathfinder, although I could be wrong there. In any case a historian as dark lord is interesting and the return of S was done quite well.


Mon Nov 02, 2015 11:12 am
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Evil Genius
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Post Re: Quoth the Raven #22 - discussion
Yeah I agree, you don't get many darklords that can function as legitimate quest givers. James Weyland right where the adventurers are to learn every secret they find. And the historian angle is a nice touch too, that's a niche that hasn't been hit. Definitely a lot of potential tools to use if you can come up with some sinister agenda for him to fulfill.

The main thing I didn't like about him was that he didn't seem evil enough to warrant being a darklord as written. He abandoned his friends once, and then POW suddenly he's a darklord. Darklords usually have more actively evil origins than that. After becoming a darklord, the primary evil he commits is being a really bad boss. He doesn't have any sinister evil agendas because his futile quest is entirely personal (rediscovering his homeland because he is homesick.)

Of course, it's not that hard to fill in what's needed for a sinister agenda. He could have several cover up operations going for past vile deeds his cronies have done. And he could always be seeking Absalom for another, more sinister reason in addition to his personal reasons for seeking it.

And hey, this guy might also give a DM the chance to use the darker, more questionable stuff from the Seeker of Secrets books that has been downplayed/quietly retconned out since its release.


Mon Nov 02, 2015 10:07 pm
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Evil Genius
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Post Re: Quoth the Raven #22 - discussion
The Lesser Evil wrote:
.

The main thing I didn't like about him was that he didn't seem evil enough to warrant being a darklord as written. He abandoned his friends once, and then POW suddenly he's a darklord. Darklords usually have more actively evil origins than that. After becoming a darklord, the primary evil he commits is being a really bad boss. He doesn't have any sinister evil agendas because his futile quest is entirely personal (rediscovering his homeland because he is homesick.)

Of course, it's not that hard to fill in what's needed for a sinister agenda. He could have several cover up operations going for past vile deeds his cronies have done. And he could always be seeking Absalom for another, more sinister reason in addition to his personal reasons for seeking it.

And hey, this guy might also give a DM the chance to use the darker, more questionable stuff from the Seeker of Secrets books that has been downplayed/quietly retconned out since its release.


I agree with this, he needs a more evil background. Sure he abandoned his friends to their deaths but that was the one time. That is not enough IMO. Not every murderer winds up in RL.


Mon Nov 02, 2015 11:01 pm
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Post Re: Quoth the Raven #22 - discussion
The Lesser Evil wrote:
The main thing I didn't like about him was that he didn't seem evil enough to warrant being a darklord as written. He abandoned his friends once, and then POW suddenly he's a darklord. Darklords usually have more actively evil origins than that.

Not all the darklords are megalomaniac evil beings that have committed atrocities. Often it's the quality of the betrayal that warranted the damnation.
Dominic d'Honaire and Hazlik for example.

Weylan abandoned his friends. But that's putting it lightly. He was an adventurer who abandoned the rest of his party, leaving them to die. Die and very possibly come back as spirits. Which is a big betrayal of their trust. And he did so knowingly, for knowledge and personal glory.
However, he was also a Pathfinder. And the tenants of the organization are Explore, Report, and Cooperate. By not cooperating and seeking personal fame, he was turning his back on the Society. Another large betrayal.

A subtler damnation was purposeful, as trying to match the horror of the Whispering Tyrant would be foolish. You can't out-evil or out-murder him. Doing so would almost be comedic.
Ustalav is also a busy land with a lot of diverse horrors and adventures. I wanted a less active lord to allow all the adventures in that land to be possible.
And a scholar darklord and a darklord who was a former adventurer appealed to me. Plus, it was an opportunity to work in the Pathfinder Society and make it a part of the land.

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Tue Nov 03, 2015 7:15 pm
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Post Re: Quoth the Raven #22 - discussion
Jester of the FoS wrote:
Weylan abandoned his friends. But that's putting it lightly. He was an adventurer who abandoned the rest of his party, leaving them to die. Die and very possibly come back as spirits. Which is a big betrayal of their trust. And he did so knowingly, for knowledge and personal glory.
However, he was also a Pathfinder. And the tenants of the organization are Explore, Report, and Cooperate. By not cooperating and seeking personal fame, he was turning his back on the Society. Another large betrayal.

A subtler damnation was purposeful, as trying to match the horror of the Whispering Tyrant would be foolish. You can't out-evil or out-murder him. Doing so would almost be comedic.
Ustalav is also a busy land with a lot of diverse horrors and adventures. I wanted a less active lord to allow all the adventures in that land to be possible.
And a scholar darklord and a darklord who was a former adventurer appealed to me. Plus, it was an opportunity to work in the Pathfinder Society and make it a part of the land.


Most darklords have a pretty sordid history of horrible acts before the seminal act that forms the domain. Hazlik was a Red Wizard long before his betrayal, and D'Honaire was playing mind games with people before gaslighting his nanny- these events were culminations or toppers of their evils. Those were events they actively caused, rather than something they allowed to happen by not doing anything. I do appreciate your design decisions for choosing a more subtle darklord who betrays a code of conduct and his friends over a massively evil being who has killed thousands. It wasn't the philosophy of the design I was not not caring for, merely a few details about the execution.


Tue Nov 03, 2015 8:26 pm
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Post Re: Quoth the Raven #22 - discussion
With regards this issue, it is the first which includes a contribution from me, in the form of two maps in the article "Domains that came before" by Matt White, and I just want to say how pleased I am that I was asked to make them, and that they were included. :D


Tue Nov 03, 2015 11:59 pm
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Post Re: Quoth the Raven #22 - discussion
The Lesser Evil wrote:
Jester of the FoS wrote:
Weylan abandoned his friends. But that's putting it lightly. He was an adventurer who abandoned the rest of his party, leaving them to die. Die and very possibly come back as spirits. Which is a big betrayal of their trust. And he did so knowingly, for knowledge and personal glory.
However, he was also a Pathfinder. And the tenants of the organization are Explore, Report, and Cooperate. By not cooperating and seeking personal fame, he was turning his back on the Society. Another large betrayal.

A subtler damnation was purposeful, as trying to match the horror of the Whispering Tyrant would be foolish. You can't out-evil or out-murder him. Doing so would almost be comedic.
Ustalav is also a busy land with a lot of diverse horrors and adventures. I wanted a less active lord to allow all the adventures in that land to be possible.
And a scholar darklord and a darklord who was a former adventurer appealed to me. Plus, it was an opportunity to work in the Pathfinder Society and make it a part of the land.


Most darklords have a pretty sordid history of horrible acts before the seminal act that forms the domain. Hazlik was a Red Wizard long before his betrayal, and D'Honaire was playing mind games with people before gaslighting his nanny- these events were culminations or toppers of their evils. Those were events they actively caused, rather than something they allowed to happen by not doing anything. I do appreciate your design decisions for choosing a more subtle darklord who betrays a code of conduct and his friends over a massively evil being who has killed thousands. It wasn't the philosophy of the design I was not not caring for, merely a few details about the execution.


Maybe he had a history of lesser betrayals that culminated in this. Maybe he had a history of taking too much credit, of taking historical evidence and not telling the rest of the party not for wealth but for exclusive information he could use for historical research with which he would gain sole credit.


Wed Nov 04, 2015 8:41 am
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Post Re: Quoth the Raven #22 - discussion
thekristhomas wrote:
With regards this issue, it is the first which includes a contribution from me, in the form of two maps in the article "Domains that came before" by Matt White, and I just want to say how pleased I am that I was asked to make them, and that they were included. :D

And on that note, I just want to say how awesome all the maps and artwork are in this issue. They really make the articles pop and look professional, and if I'm not mistaken, there's far more art in this issue than any prior one.

I was especially stoked to see new artwork from Talon Dunning. However Matt White pulled that off, Kudos!

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Wed Nov 04, 2015 9:55 am
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Post Re: Quoth the Raven #22 - discussion
Gonzoron of the FoS wrote:
thekristhomas wrote:
With regards this issue, it is the first which includes a contribution from me, in the form of two maps in the article "Domains that came before" by Matt White, and I just want to say how pleased I am that I was asked to make them, and that they were included. :D

And on that note, I just want to say how awesome all the maps and artwork are in this issue. They really make the articles pop and look professional, and if I'm not mistaken, there's far more art in this issue than any prior one.

I was especially stoked to see new artwork from Talon Dunning. However Matt White pulled that off, Kudos!


Just don't ask me to make them! LOL! I am about as artistically skilled as the average four year old and get straight Ds in school for art. I only passed because they knew I was trying.


Wed Nov 04, 2015 10:12 am
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Post Re: Quoth the Raven #22 - discussion
This issue is fantastic! All the work that's being done on this site is brilliant, I'm glad that the darkness continues. Did i miss something or did the article on Falkovnia include a major population explosion??

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Post Re: Quoth the Raven #22 - discussion
I would say it brought it to the other side of the spectrum personally. I welcome that change for campaigns centered in Falkovnia although Personally, I'll keep my Falkovnia at 200-300K or so. But yes, I consider the exploration of a "As big as France" Falkovnia an interesting viewpoint.

And OK, I'll say it: I never liked the hawk brand. I'm glad someone else thought that too and decided to keep it only for Talons.

What I mainly don't like is the like-able Drakov. I prefer the version of "brain-damaged 2D bully that thinks he can play king, impales people for fun and nobody takes seriously"

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Wed Nov 04, 2015 6:41 pm
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Evil Genius
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Post Re: Quoth the Raven #22 - discussion
I confess I made an entirely unmanly squeal of joy when I saw Talon's work in the QtR

GreenWood wrote:
This issue is fantastic! All the work that's being done on this site is brilliant, I'm glad that the darkness continues. Did i miss something or did the article on Falkovnia include a major population explosion??

alhoon wrote:
I would say it brought it to a more realistic level personally.
I can't say I agree with all the changes there but I certainly agree with this.


I've been re-setting the populations of all the domains I work on to something a bit closer to reality. Falkovnia is 15 million, Darkon 30 million, Dementlieu 10, Lamordia, Barovia, and Hazlan are all about 3-ish.

For comparison, the German Zollverein (the customs union that roughly approximates what would later become Germany) in 1855 was about 40 million people. So the Core is still on the scrawny side, but it's in the general area, at least.

alhoon wrote:
And OK, I'll say it: I never liked the hawk brand. I'm glad someone else thought that too and decided to keep it only for Talons.


It felt a bit... overwrought.

alhoon wrote:
What I mainly don't like is the like-able Drakov. I prefer the version of "brain-damaged 2D bully that thinks he can play king, impales people for fun and nobody takes seriously"


I also found that a bit overwrought. Well, to each his own.

...I'm pretty sure I'm batting 1 for 4 right now with Darklord revisions.

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Wed Nov 04, 2015 6:55 pm
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Post Re: Quoth the Raven #22 - discussion
alhoon wrote:
I would say it brought it to the other side of the spectrum personally. I welcome that change for campaigns centered in Falkovnia although Personally, I'll keep my Falkovnia at 200-300K or so. But yes, I consider the exploration of a "As big as France" Falkovnia an interesting viewpoint.

And OK, I'll say it: I never liked the hawk brand. I'm glad someone else thought that too and decided to keep it only for Talons.

What I mainly don't like is the like-able Drakov. I prefer the version of "brain-damaged 2D bully that thinks he can play king, impales people for fun and nobody takes seriously"


I like the "big as France" Falkovnia. I always expand the realms. I find tiny realms limiting.


Wed Nov 04, 2015 7:09 pm
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Post Re: Quoth the Raven #22 - discussion
NeoTiamat wrote:
I confess I made an entirely unmanly squeal of joy when I saw Talon's work in the QtR

GreenWood wrote:
This issue is fantastic! All the work that's being done on this site is brilliant, I'm glad that the darkness continues. Did i miss something or did the article on Falkovnia include a major population explosion??

alhoon wrote:
I would say it brought it to a more realistic level personally.
I can't say I agree with all the changes there but I certainly agree with this.
I've been re-setting the populations of all the domains I work on to something a bit closer to reality. Falkovnia is 15 million, Darkon 30 million, Dementlieu 10, Lamordia, Barovia, and Hazlan are all about 3-ish.

For comparison, the German Zollverein (the customs union that roughly approximates what would later become Germany) in 1855 was about 40 million people. So the Core is still on the scrawny side, but it's in the general area, at least.

alhoon wrote:
And OK, I'll say it: I never liked the hawk brand. I'm glad someone else thought that too and decided to keep it only for Talons.




It felt a bit... overwrought.

alhoon wrote:
What I mainly don't like is the like-able Drakov. I prefer the version of "brain-damaged 2D bully that thinks he can play king, impales people for fun and nobody takes seriously"


I also found that a bit overwrought. Well, to each his own.

...I'm pretty sure I'm batting 1 for 4 right now with Darklord revisions.


I like the vast majority of changes, including the increase in size. I always increase mine, that way you can have big cities and room for things. This doesn't include pocket domains, of course.

I wish I thought of that with the hawk brand as I would have used it. Unfortunately I already established that in Revolutionary Falkovnia you are rebranded so their is a spear through the center of the hawk.

With Drakov you can't win them all. The thing is he fills the swaggering, bullying evil aristocrat niche better than any other dark lord. He is also , like the dukkar, people can love to hate. I pretty much like the rest though. I do like the idea of an effective propaganda campaign, there most be some reason they didn't all revolt long ago. Is there any ideas you have on how I could use your QTR22 version as part of the basis of Revolutionary Falkovnia which is sort of like Revolutionary France on crack. Some things should be turned on its head while others are "The old wine is poured into a new bottle and given a new name". Like I said outside of your changes to Drakov I like what you did to it.


Wed Nov 04, 2015 7:47 pm
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