Cyberlore Majesty Forum Forum Index Cyberlore Majesty Forum
Original Majesty Forum on Cyberlore.com


Monster Improvements

 
Post new topic   Reply to topic    Cyberlore Majesty Forum Forum Index -> Majesty Wish List
View previous topic :: View next topic  
Falotar



Joined: 22 Jan 2001
Posts: 2579
Location: Yaro'on the Fair

 PostPosted: Wed Oct 06, 2004 6:20 pm    Post subject: Monster Improvements Reply with quote Back to top

I warn you, this has been discussed before. My Ideas for MajII and Tiger's More Monster Ideas are just a couple of examples. If anyone is interested, they can dig them up. But I thought it would be better to start afresh.
So, this is supposed to deal with improving available monster races, and possibly adding new ones. Currently, Majesty has two monster races, Ratmen and Goblins, plus the undead. Other monsters with potential to become full-fledged races are: serpents (Harpies, Medusae, G. Gorgons, Dragons -- some might argue that they already constitute a race), nature spirits (Dryads, Daemonwood, Rock Golems), and lupinians (Vargs and Werewolves.)
One way to improve monster race is to add more units/buildings. Another is to give them a "kingdom" setup with gold generation and workers to build and repair structures. Another way is to have monster heroes.

Goblins already have a lot of these things. It wouldn't be too difficult to give them a slave-type that they use to maintain their encampments. Mabe a human-goblin cross descended from prisoners captured in long ago raids? Overlords and Priests could be converted into heroes; Priests could have a prestige class of High Priest if they gain enough Intelligence/other experience. A new building for the Goblins could be some sort of tarpits where the Priests breed Trolls from magic and fungal slime. It would answer the age-old riddle: Where do Trolls come from?
One last things: Goblins have been sadly neglected in that they have no NPCs. Undead have the W. King, L. Queen, and two Wights, and Ratmen have Rhoden, but the Goblins? Of course, if they have heroes equipped with Alfryd's neural net, that might render a special NPC redundant ... but maybe not. A Goblin Emperor appearing in one or two Quests (or a campaign, if MajII incorporates that) would be fun.

Ratmen need a little more tinkering. For one thing, they only have one "wild" lair, the Rat Nest; the other two are dependent on humans. They at least need a central command base, perhaps a sort of hill fortified with bits of scrap they've stolen from human settlements. Then they need a henchman unit; maybe the miniature Ratmen we see manning the Ratapaults? Speaking of which, the Ratapaults need to be redone. For an attack named "Balefire", it's way too puny. Being inaccurate is all very well, but it should have a bigger range of effect and cause more damage on a successful impact. For heroes, they have the R. Champion and the Shaman. A Ratman Prince, successor or precursor to Rhoden, would be interesting as an NPC.

Now the undead. Of course, the undead aren't really a race. However, considering that intelligent undead realize the need for cooperation against their enemies (the living), they might as well be treated as such. first off: a question. Are the Black Phantoms really undead? I believe the game leaves the question open. But, even if they're not undead, might they still side with the undead? Maybe.
As for buildings, well, Ancient Graveyards definitely are not enough, though they are a start. How about Catacomb Entrances, which lead into a subterranean world lost to mortals? But then, that wouldn't necessarily be undead-specific. Certainly they need some sort of special keep or castle to serve as a command post. Haunted houses, hm. They can use the Zombie as a maintanence worker.
As for heroes, Vampires for starters. They should have a prestige class ... Blood Knight, perhaps. Or Blood Angel. Also, another undead hero class would be in order, and I was thinking of Ghouls. Now, I know that recently ghouls have been stigmatized as mindless, but is that necessary? Especially as Majesty is marked by out-of-the-box thinking. An intelligent Ghoul would be very interesting, a flesh-eating undead that hides in shadow magic and ambushes unsuspecting mortals with razor-sharp talons. Heroes devoured by the Ghoul would not be available for Resurrection. The same might go for those drained of blood by Vampires. In addition, they might rise as again as servants to their slayers. Perhaps not heroes, but definitely henchmen.

Serpents have plenty of units, but only one building. Also, there's the issue of unity. The Harpies and Merdusae are in rebellion against the G. Gorgons, who are trying to coerce them back, and the Dragons doubtless believe themselves far superior to these spawn of Scrylia. Which makes me want to ask: what was Scrylia? A Dragon? Or a half-Dragon crossbred with something else?

Nature spirits are fun, but they need race-specific buildings to be a race. Maybe "buildings" isn't the right term. A ring of trees, for example, might be their average barracks structure. An enchanted tree might house Dryads. An altar of some sort might conjure Daemonwood and Rock Golems. An interesting idea for a base would be a Portal to Fae, a rare structure with amazing powers. For example, when destroyed by a hero, it might suck him into the dryads' home plane.
Service would be tricky. Maybe the Dryads themselves would simply "grow" their structures, or maybe they would charm Human Peasants to do the work for them. Or maybe miniature golems?
Lastly, they need a Hero class. I don't like the idea of R. Golem or Daemonwood as heroes; they start off too powerful and it's hard to imagine them weaker. I was thinking of a Dryad Summoner, who would charm both your townsfolk and natural creatures, as well as summon Daemonwood and Rock Golems at higher levels.

Fianlly lupinians. I foresee a great deal of objection to my including them as a race at all. My primary answer is: I like wolves. More rationally, I can't help but notice that the Manual says Vargs are "cunning and evil relatives of the common wolf". That seems to imply that they are a cut above your pure animal, since nobody in their right minds calls an animal "evil". So, perhaps they are the result of some twisted infusion of human souls into wolf bodies -- something of that nature. That means that they have the capability to develop a civilization of sorts, and that spells trouble for Ardania and fun for the player.
Buildings, of course, would be Varg dens and maybe gutted peasant houses. Construction, of course, would be hard. Vargs have no hands and thus cannot build, and werewolves are psychotic and so also cannot build.
On to the hero. I suggest something along the lines of a psychic. A Varg spellcaster that can manipulate the minds of others. This would, incidentally, solve the problem of building upkeep, since the psychic could pacify certain werewolves into being builders.

So, what do you say? Is there anything I did right?[/url][/code]
_________________
"Death awaits you!" - Maester Seymour, from Squaresoft's Final Fantasy X[i]
 
View user's profile Send private message
Cooker



Joined: 20 Mar 2000
Posts: 1710

 PostPosted: Wed Oct 06, 2004 7:12 pm    Post subject: Interesting Reply with quote Back to top

I think the key is to have monster lair behave more like guilds and monster more like heroes.

Basically, less monsters, but more powerful / interesting.
 
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail ICQ Number
XxaxX



Joined: 06 Jul 2004
Posts: 402
Location: Halifax, Canada

 PostPosted: Wed Oct 06, 2004 7:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

i like the idea that only some monsters could grow from experience, because some (like the zombie and rock golems) are too stupid to learn anything
 
View user's profile Send private message
Falotar



Joined: 22 Jan 2001
Posts: 2579
Location: Yaro'on the Fair

 PostPosted: Wed Oct 06, 2004 8:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

Is that []all[/i] you have to say? Heehee, hoho, hahahahahaha ...
Why less monsters? Just because certain monsters become more powerful doesn't mean we have to have less.
Haivng lairs behave like Guilds could mean two things. One, the monster "ruler" pays money to hire monsters. Two, there's a cap to the number of monsters spawned. Now, for hero monsters that's a good idea. Having a potentially infinite number of levelling Vampires is pretty unnerving. But, for your more ordinary run of the mill creatures, they should just be spawned the way they are now.
To XxaxX: I don't know about Rock Golems being stupid. They're ancient elemental spirits, after all. But levelling up? Having an Alfrydian neural net and personality types? No thank you.

About the Vampire/Ghoul ability of destroying a henchman and making them into their slaves.
Vampire: Lifeblood ~ A melee attack whereby the Vampire transfers all of a henchman's hitpoints to himself. The henchman collapses, his body lies there for a few seconds, then it becomes a Mind Slave, a weak undead whose will is completely undead the command of the Vampire. They have minor combat skills and a toned-down version of Leech Life. Mind Slaves cannot be charmed away from their masters. However, if a Vampire is charmed by a Priestess, then the Mind Slaves go with him.
Ghoul: Devour ~ The Ghoul throws his cloak around the henchman (did I mention that I conceive of these ghouls as dapper, possibly oriental, gentlemen), and consumes all of his hitpoints. The henchman emerges denuded of flesh, and becomes a Bone Puppet. Essentially this is a Skeleton with high magic resistance (it shares its master's will). Cannot be charmed directly, but if the Ghoul is charmed the Puppets will be charmed too.
Which brings me to the idea of charming undead heroes by Priestesses. Given that you should not be able to wrest control of an opponent's hero unimpeded, I think that an attempt by a Priestess should result in a mind war. If the Priestess wins, then the undead follow her. If the undead win, then the Priestess becomes their minion.
_________________
"Death awaits you!" - Maester Seymour, from Squaresoft's Final Fantasy X[i]
 
View user's profile Send private message
Spiderman



Joined: 28 Mar 2000
Posts: 3053
Location: Baltimore, MD USA

 PostPosted: Thu Oct 07, 2004 4:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

I like the ideas - it kinda blends in with an earlier wish to have monster races playable in Majesty 2 (before there was news of Majesty 2) and it could be more easily implemented if monster lairs followed roughly the same template as Guilds.

I also like the idea of monsters leveling up and "learning" from their encounters, just like heroes.
_________________
Thwip!
 
View user's profile Send private message
XxaxX



Joined: 06 Jul 2004
Posts: 402
Location: Halifax, Canada

 PostPosted: Thu Oct 07, 2004 10:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

makes sense to me
 
View user's profile Send private message
Falotar



Joined: 22 Jan 2001
Posts: 2579
Location: Yaro'on the Fair

 PostPosted: Fri Oct 08, 2004 10:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

A little bit more about Ghouls.
- Sinister gourmets who prefer to take their meals at the expense of the living.
- Found mainly in the Eastern Provinces, where they inhabit ornate tombs.
- Are, as Alfryd would say, a combat tank: high HTH, Parry, Strength, and Vitality (Anti-Vitality?).
- Have high intelligence and magic resistance.
- Have few spells of their own, one being Paralytic Gaze; but they make good use of a Library (or its equivalent).
- Use their well-tended claws in combat; damage probably around 16, or something to that effect.
- Here a few sample voicelines, to give you a feel for what I have in mind (all spoken in an aristocratic tone):
Sight Enemy: "Mindless cattle ... "
Going After a Reward: "Dinner is served."
Wandering: "Dwarves take some preparation, but Elves ... "
Dying: "Just ... one more fillet ... *sigh* "
And Vampires should start out with Life Leech/Drain Life (what's the difference?) and about 6 hitpoints. The way I reckon it, the current Vampire would be about level seven ofr a "heroic" Vampire.
_________________
"Death awaits you!" - Maester Seymour, from Squaresoft's Final Fantasy X[i]
 
View user's profile Send private message
Falotar



Joined: 22 Jan 2001
Posts: 2579
Location: Yaro'on the Fair

 PostPosted: Sat Dec 25, 2004 1:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

Given Greymane's recent interest in monstrous/evil "heroes", I thought I'd bring this back to the top for his (I trust it's "his") benefit. and my vanity, of course.
Since I'm taking the trouble, I also might as well flesh out some more ideas.
~ Undead-specific structures (the one marked with an asterisk is already included in the game) ~
- Ancient Graveyard*: Ancient burying ground plagued by uneasy dead. Spawns Skeletons, Zombies, and Shadowbeasts. Can support one Vampire. Spawns Vampire when destroyed.
- Eastern Tomb: Ornate structures found throughout the Eastern Provinces. Can support two Ghouls.
- Necropolis: Terraced hill covered with archaic tombs and monuments. Spawns Zombies and Skeletons; can support four Vampires.
- Defiled Shrine: Shrine of forgotten god, now corrupted by necromantic magiks. Casts various necromantic spells, such as Wither, within a limited radius. Can support one Vampire or Ghoul.
_________________
"Death awaits you!" - Maester Seymour, from Squaresoft's Final Fantasy X[i]
 
View user's profile Send private message
Alfryd



Joined: 03 Dec 2002
Posts: 914

 PostPosted: Sat Dec 25, 2004 11:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

Quote:
...and my vanity, of course.

It's a win-win situation!
Black Phantoms definitely look like some brand of incorporeal undead, similar to wraiths, spectres, shades etc. I'm actually not so certain about the Witch King. He's certainly past his sell-by-date, so to speak, but he seems to be more sinister-nature aligned. The description doesn't say he's actually dead, but that he's had a magically prolongued life... Eh, it's flexible I guess.
I like the idea of vampires gaining levels.
Quote:
Also, another undead hero class would be in order, and I was thinking of Ghouls.

It always struck me that ghouls were essentially one rung down on the undead evolutionary ladder from vampires. I mean, the basic problem with being undead is that you gain potential immortality at the price of being dead, i.e, bits of you fall, flake or get chipped off until you're reduced to dust, and that's unfun. Of course, you can always go incorporeal, but that usually requires considerable sorcerous knowedge and/or exceptional stubborness of character, and then you spend the rest of eternity not getting any. No wonder Liches are so p!ssed. Moroever, incorporeal undead are often noted for draining the life-force from their corporeal victims, perhaps amounting to a kind of soul-consumption analogous to what vampires and ghouls practice- which is to draw sustenance from the living tissue of others, keeping their own innards in repair. Vampires have adopted a kind of stealth-based approach that involves making a withdrawal with a minimum of fuss, or residual evidence. If you need to hang around a potential food source, it's a good idea to stay inconspicuous. Ghouls, by contrast, feed less frequently, but go the whole hog, and have rather stronger stomachs. Both have made physical modifications to their morphology to accomodate feeding styles.
It's odd to note that traditional Wights, though eminently corporeal undead, use a life-draining touch rather than fluid/flesh consumption. As a consequence, although they exhibit symptoms of tissue decay common to lower undead, they remain far more intelligent. Low-level vampires are easily outmatched by any freshly-raised wight, but wights tend to be heavily hampered by bodily disintegration as time goes by. Vampire, Ghoul and Wight all propogate their species by infecting the corpses of victims with their own condition. In the case of ghouls, of course, not enough may remain of their victim to constitute a new body...
Quote:
My primary answer is: I like wolves.

Oh, right, well, that's ok then. I'd still be tempted to bundle lupinians in with the sinister-nature side of things, though... you're right, they don't quite seem to be correctly aligned with dryads/daemonwood/spiders, etc. Their closest spiritual alliance is actually with Fervus, so that might a conceivable jumping-off point for some kind of plot involvement. A background campaign that chronicles the emergence of the cult of Fervus from the wilds, shortly before triggering the crusades of Makkat the Mad. There's also a slight connection with Lunord via the Moon/lycanthropy iconology (which ties in with with the healing powers of the chalice and Agrela via their water/tides/moon connection.) Ooh, tantalising...
Quote:
Having an Alfrydian neural net and personality types?

Stop, please, I haven't invented anything original in that department.
Quote:
Anti-Vitality?

Vitality is only useful for poison, disease and critical strike resistance (well, logically it should) with a mild hp bonus. Undead are completely immune to disease, poison and critical strike and wouldn't gain much by way of bonus hp, being incapable of fundamental growth. I give them vitality zero.
I'd still tend to imagine ghouls as being vaguely repulsive, not due to rotting tissue (though they could well have bad breath,) but simply thanks to morphological changes needed to consume raw flesh quickly- distended claws and fangs beneath, taut, pale skin, and jet-black eyes. Yes, I can imagine using a hooded cloak to hide/disguise themselves on their travels from town to town where fresh victims might be found. I don't think ghouls would often tend to have lairs, since they'd need to move on constantly to find food once they exhaust a given region and/or the locals get suspicious. They might know some of the darker arts, but these would mainly be hangovers from their former lives, since they'd rarely stop in one place long enough for study. Ghouls that don't lead a peripatetic existence (trapped in their tombs or hobbled by fear of sunlight or the lack of any known settlements nearby,) would slowly fall apart over time from lack of meat. Although their reaction isn't as severe as vampires', ghouls suffer from severe sunburn. They'd travel by night or on cloudy days.
Quote:
Life Leech/Drain Life

One is shorter range and longer cooldown. I'd also make life-leech a passive combat-based ability that drains 100% of damage inflicted in melee and adds to personal health. Still, that's an open question.
_________________
The living are a species of the dead, and a very rare species.
 
View user's profile Send private message
Falotar



Joined: 22 Jan 2001
Posts: 2579
Location: Yaro'on the Fair

 PostPosted: Sun Dec 26, 2004 12:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

Alfryd wrote:
Black Phantoms definitely look like some brand of incorporeal undead, similar to wraiths, spectres, shades etc. I'm actually not so certain about the Witch King. He's certainly past his sell-by-date, so to speak, but he seems to be more sinister-nature aligned. The description doesn't say he's actually dead, but that he's had a magically prolongued life... Eh, it's flexible I guess.


True, Black Phantoms look like undead, but their description doesn't mention it. It says that "their origins are unknown". I don't know what else they would be, but even if they were undead they're hardly your run-of-the-mill ghost. Which, of course, you never said. I'm going in circles ... Confused
And you're right about the Witch King. The fact that he's not recorded as ever actually dying only occured to me after I posted, and I saw no reason to go back and edit it out.

Quote:
It always struck me that ghouls were essentially one rung down on the undead evolutionary ladder from vampires ... Vampires have adopted a kind of stealth-based approach that involves making a withdrawal with a minimum of fuss, or residual evidence. If you need to hang around a potential food source, it's a good idea to stay inconspicuous. Ghouls, by contrast, feed less frequently, but go the whole hog, and have rather stronger stomachs. Both have made physical modifications to their morphology to accomodate feeding styles.


I wouldn't put Ghouls down (on the evolutionary scale) as lower than vampires, and I don't see that conclusion coming from this statement. I imagine as equal, but different, with Vampires emphasizing magic and mind control while Ghouls employ a more physical approach.

Quote:
It's odd to note that traditional Wights, though eminently corporeal undead, use a life-draining touch rather than fluid/flesh consumption. As a consequence, although they exhibit symptoms of tissue decay common to lower undead, they remain far more intelligent. Low-level vampires are easily outmatched by any freshly-raised wight, but wights tend to be heavily hampered by bodily disintegration as time goes by.


I wouldn't call this description a "traditional" Wight. Not etymologic tradition, anyway. "Wight" comes from an Old English word meaning "creature, thing". Using it specifically for undead limits what could be a very good word for any number of incorporeal/spiritual creatures.
Quote:
Oh, right, well, that's ok then. I'd still be tempted to bundle lupinians in with the sinister-nature side of things, though... you're right, they don't quite seem to be correctly aligned with dryads/daemonwood/spiders, etc. Their closest spiritual alliance is actually with Fervus, so that might a conceivable jumping-off point for some kind of plot involvement. A background campaign that chronicles the emergence of the cult of Fervus from the wilds, shortly before triggering the crusades of Makkat the Mad. There's also a slight connection with Lunord via the Moon/lycanthropy iconology (which ties in with with the healing powers of the chalice and Agrela via their water/tides/moon connection.) Ooh, tantalising...


Indeed. One wonders whether vargs were around before Fervus. If they preceded him historically, how did they come to be associated with him? And what association do they have with him now? I mean, Varg-head sculptures and the occasional spawning are all very well, but it doesn't give an in-depth connection.

Quote:
Stop, please, I haven't invented anything original in that department.


I won't argue, but you were the one who introduced me to the idea.

Quote:
Vitality is only useful for poison, disease and critical strike resistance (well, logically it should) with a mild hp bonus. Undead are completely immune to disease, poison and critical strike and wouldn't gain much by way of bonus hp, being incapable of fundamental growth. I give them vitality zero.


I agree that "vitality" doesn't really apply to undead, but i disagree that all of its corollary effects have no place in an undead constitution. Critical strike, for example, consists in hitting a decisive blow to an enemies weak spot. For corporeal undead, at least, this should work. (Imagine a skeleton being smashed in the spine by a club.) Also, while undead certainly don't grow, their heroes should still increase in hitpoints. In game terms, hp stand for more than just muscle size or fat. It stands for the over-all condition of your body. High-class corporeal undead have a fairly decent body, provided they can absorb enough life force to keep it together, and incorporeal undead ... well, they have to have something. I mean, they can't lose p and be defeated if they have none to begin with. Hitpoints for them might reflect will ... hmmmm.

Quote:
I'd still tend to imagine ghouls as being vaguely repulsive, not due to rotting tissue (though they could well have bad breath,) but simply thanks to morphological changes needed to consume raw flesh quickly- distended claws and fangs beneath, taut, pale skin, and jet-black eyes. Yes, I can imagine using a hooded cloak to hide/disguise themselves on their travels from town to town where fresh victims might be found. I don't think ghouls would often tend to have lairs, since they'd need to move on constantly to find food once they exhaust a given region and/or the locals get suspicious.


The same logic applies to Vampires. As far as being itinerant goes, while true that Ghouls (and Vampires) would have to leave a region once all resources are exhausted or their presence compromised, Majesty games rarely last a month in game days. Thus, for the short term, they would have lairs. And, actually, it's highly possible that a powerful Ghoul, feeling confidant in his strength, would care little whether he is known or not. When a kingdom's coffers are empty and its revenue infrastructure disrupted, a Ghoul could live quite happily off of the struggling community.
Oh yes -- part of my reason for describing Ghouls as I did was simply to shatter the preconceptions of Ghouls as shambling automatons. Having a dashing undead whose fangs and claws merely make him exotic would be quite a feather in Majesty's creative cap. (And who said anything about raw meat?)
_________________
"Death awaits you!" - Maester Seymour, from Squaresoft's Final Fantasy X[i]
 
View user's profile Send private message
Alfryd



Joined: 03 Dec 2002
Posts: 914

 PostPosted: Sun Dec 26, 2004 4:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

Quote:
I wouldn't put Ghouls down (on the evolutionary scale) as lower than vampires, and I don't see that conclusion coming from this statement. I imagine as equal, but different, with Vampires emphasizing magic and mind control while Ghouls employ a more physical approach.

Well, strictly speaking humans and earthworms are equally evolved, as both are specialised for a particular lifestyle and survive equally well under those conditions. Nevertheless, we tend to rank species in terms of progression toward a particular extreme of specialisation. On that scale, vampires are the most highly evolved at maintaining their personal existence indefinitely through parasitising the lifeforce of others, by being discrete, secretive, and cosmetically similar to their prey. Other forms of undead manage just fine by being more virulent (wights) or more prolific (ghouls,) in a manner analagous to infectious diseases.
Quote:
The same logic applies to Vampires.

Ah, not so. Vampires can inhabit the same area more or less indefinitely- particularly large urban areas- since they don't actually have to kill their prey in order to feed, and leave little or no evidence of their predation. Other forms of undead, by contrast, are either too visibly inhuman and/or feed too conspicuously to escape notice. Of course, a town has to be rundown and lawless to afford them ample shelter and anonymity, but it's possible. The wilderness vampre is the exception to the rule.
Quote:
I wouldn't call this description a "traditional" Wight.

Oh, of course. I mean the narrow modern fantasy tradition, which has essentially aped Tolkien ahead of the archaic origins of such terms. Lych simply means corpse and Revenant ghost, but these, too, have been transmuted.
Quote:
Also, while undead certainly don't grow, their heroes should still increase in hitpoints.

Yes, but I imagine this being down to a combination of strength, level, and base hp, rather than exclusively vitality-based. Critical strike might apply, but then, vitality would also have a limited impact on Crit resist.
Quote:
Having a dashing undead whose fangs and claws merely make him exotic would be quite a feather in Majesty's creative cap.
Possibly, though I also found endearing the extent to which Majesty almost satirically characterises the array of fantasy stereotypes- the wizard/warrior/ranger in particular. It was easy enough to stretch the laidback, aloof and detached elven stereotype to something that was almost the direct opposite of their original image, as debauched and indolent revelers. If it works, it works.
_________________
The living are a species of the dead, and a very rare species.
 
View user's profile Send private message
Falotar



Joined: 22 Jan 2001
Posts: 2579
Location: Yaro'on the Fair

 PostPosted: Sun Dec 26, 2004 1:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

Alfryd wrote:
Well, strictly speaking humans and earthworms are equally evolved, as both are specialised for a particular lifestyle and survive equally well under those conditions. Nevertheless, we tend to rank species in terms of progression toward a particular extreme of specialisation. On that scale, vampires are the most highly evolved at maintaining their personal existence indefinitely through parasitising the lifeforce of others, by being discrete, secretive, and cosmetically similar to their prey. Other forms of undead manage just fine by being more virulent (wights) or more prolific (ghouls,) in a manner analagous to infectious diseases.


Not from where I stand. Wights aside, I don't see Ghouls as being any more "prolific" than Vampires -- indeed, in Majesty's setting, I imagine them to be less pervasive. And Vampires have fangs too, and Majesty Vampires at least have class (or so I assume from their method of attack). This isn't D&D, after all, and the stereotypes developed frm that and other fantasy games/books apply to Majesty only if we (and, abmittedly, the Cyberloreans) allow.

Quote:
Ah, not so. Vampires can inhabit the same area more or less indefinitely- particularly large urban areas- since they don't actually have to kill their prey in order to feed, and leave little or no evidence of their predation. Other forms of undead, by contrast, are either too visibly inhuman and/or feed too conspicuously to escape notice. Of course, a town has to be rundown and lawless to afford them ample shelter and anonymity, but it's possible. The wilderness vampre is the exception to the rule.


I wouldn't call the marks of a Vampire's fangs and a bloodless corpse/anemic body "little or no evidence". On the contrary, a skeleton stripped clean of all flesh would be far harder to pinpoint, since any number of ravenous creatures (Giant Rats, for example) could do it, apart from Ghouls.

Quote:
Oh, of course. I mean the narrow modern fantasy tradition, which has essentially aped Tolkien ahead of the archaic origins of such terms. Lych simply means corpse and Revenant ghost, but these, too, have been transmuted.


Ironically, Tolkien's Barrow-wights are not necessarily undead. The closest hint of such a conclusion is actually not found in the actual novel, but in one of the posthumously published precursors, which the B-Ws are said to be related to Ringwraiths (which are undead).

Quote:
Possibly, though I also found endearing the extent to which Majesty almost satirically characterises the array of fantasy stereotypes- the wizard/warrior/ranger in particular. It was easy enough to stretch the laidback, aloof and detached elven stereotype to something that was almost the direct opposite of their original image, as debauched and indolent revelers. If it works, it works.


True, but part of the caricaturization derived from the fact that the stereotypes weren't always followed to the letter. Paladins, for example, are not usually conceived of as female, much less strictly female. (Or they weren't until Majesty came along. Now I have trouble imagining anything different, at least for Majesty.) Another atypical feature, though not exactly a caricature or satire, is the Ardanian pantheon. The seven main gods are all good, or at least neutral, while the only truly evil deity is relegated to being the patron of Ardania's weakest race. "If it works, it works." ;)

Okay, I think that's about enough discussion on the basis for making Ghouls elegant rather than bestial. Unless you have something else to add?
_________________
"Death awaits you!" - Maester Seymour, from Squaresoft's Final Fantasy X[i]
 
View user's profile Send private message
Will the Spellcaster



Joined: 29 Apr 2002
Posts: 499
Location: Somewhere that I teleported too...

 PostPosted: Sun Dec 26, 2004 9:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

Well, I've alway's thought as Vargs, Werewolves, and the Witch King to be with what I call the Forest Clan, which has Dryads, Rock Golems, Daemonwoods, and Giant Spiders. The Giant Spiders could also be with the Goblins since their description says they were created by Goblins. I've also thought of the Serpent Queen as looking something like an extrememly large cross between a G. Gorgon and a Medusa. I think there could be a Quest where she's ressrected by a group of Lesser Gorgans (if there's Greater Gorgons, there has to be Lesser ones too, right) that were fooling around. The objective would be to drive the Serpent Queen from the immidiate area by destroying her physical manifestation. That way her spirit would remain intact, and so she could return later.
_________________
WizKid
 
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
Falotar



Joined: 22 Jan 2001
Posts: 2579
Location: Yaro'on the Fair

 PostPosted: Sun Dec 26, 2004 11:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

willbell1 wrote:
Well, I've alway's thought as Vargs, Werewolves, and the Witch King to be with what I call the Forest Clan, which has Dryads, Rock Golems, Daemonwoods, and Giant Spiders. The Giant Spiders could also be with the Goblins since their description says they were created by Goblins.


I don't quite think so. Vargs and Werewolves stand apart from the others since they're both unnatural in origin, and have both animal and human sides to them. The Witch King is way unnatural, although apparently he likes to manipulate nature. Dryads, Rock Golems and Daemonwood are all nature spirits; Dryads being from another dimension which Majesty is pleased to call Fey. Lastly, Giant Spiders are an unnatural mutation, and so are not directly related to any of the others. (Though the W.K. makes use of them, and the Dryads might conceivably).
As for the Goblins controlling the Giants Spiders, they'd have to have something special. The original breeders were devoured by their creations, and the Giant Spiders have proved untameable ever since, except for Cultists and the Witch King.

Quote:
I've also thought of the Serpent Queen as looking something like an extrememly large cross between a G. Gorgon and a Medusa. I think there could be a Quest where she's ressrected by a group of Lesser Gorgans (if there's Greater Gorgons, there has to be Lesser ones too, right) that were fooling around. The objective would be to drive the Serpent Queen from the immidiate area by destroying her physical manifestation. That way her spirit would remain intact, and so she could return later.


Actually, I think the "lesser" Gorgons are the Medusae.
_________________
"Death awaits you!" - Maester Seymour, from Squaresoft's Final Fantasy X[i]
 
View user's profile Send private message
Display posts from previous:   
Post new topic   Reply to topic    Cyberlore Majesty Forum Forum Index -> Majesty Wish List All times are GMT - 5 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