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Month Index: October, 1995

From:     Leroy Van Camp III <van891@??????.edu>
Date:     Thu, 12 Oct 1995 16:31:28 -0700 (PDT)
Subject:  Re: Mystara and the SJ/PS paradigm

Note:  Becasue of it's cross over information, this is being sent to
three different lists.  Sorry to those who will have to suffer through it
multiple times.

    Here is my view, as used in my campaigns, of how Mystara fits into the
Spelljammer and Planescape paradigm.
    I should point out that I am not trying to be one hundred percent true
to the information presented in Champions of Mystara (i.e. it's rules on
space, and such).  Instead, I am trying to fully integrate Mystara, while
still maintaining what I believe to be it's charm.
   I just want to stress that this is how _I_ run things, and is not a
judment on the stuff that others have posted.

Air Wizards, Space Ships, French Wizards, and You
    One of the problems integrating Mystara fully into the Spelljammer and
Planescape paradigm (SPP, from now on) is the large amount of
cross-dimensional traffic.  Three important examples of this are...

1) A technological space ship punched it's way through from another
dimension and crashed landed on Mystara, leading to significant changes in
the world.

2) After the war with the Fire Wizards, the Alphatian Air Wizards left
their destroyed homeworld and traveled through into another dimension,
ending up on Mystara.

3) The D'Ambrevilles and McGregors fled from persucation on an alternate
Earth, into another dimension.

    Obviously, this doesn't fit in well with the SPP.  As far as
Planescape seems to be concerned, there is only one Prime.  So, my
solution is this...
    I have introduced a new concept in planes, called a dimension.  A
dimension is, basically, a macro-plane, of which a planar system is
"conatained" in.  So, PS's multiverse makes up its own dimension.  And,
just like its individual planes are part of a bigger whole, so is the
multiverse.  And, the way these dimensions are set up can vary quite a
    What this does is to allow Mystara to be integrated into the SPP with
little change.  The above mentioned examples remain unaltered, yet they
can interact with SJ and PS elements.
    In my campaign, I say that the barrier between dimensions is
particularly weak in Mystaraspace, which is why there is so much cross
dimensional traffic.

The Mystara/D&D Planar Paradigm
    Although they bear certain similarities, there are some major
differences between PS and D&D planar paradigms.  The main being that D&D
has no organized Outer Planes.
    For me, the answer was simple.  Scrap the D&D version, and use PS.
It's not really that big of a step, IMHO.

Immortals vs. Gods
    One of the major differences between Mystara and AD&D settings are the
Immortals.  Athough similar in power levels, Immortals are not gods.  With
a few exceptions, they are individuals who rose to Immortality because of
their deeds and determination.
    So, why is it that people can become Immortals in Mystaraspace, but
not other crystal spheres?  My answer is... The Old Ones.
    As discussed in the Wrath of the Immortals boxed set, The Old Ones
(TOO) are an enigmatic group of people/gods/things that watch over
Mystara, and the Immortals.  TOO are more powerful than even Greater Gods,
and created the first Immortals.  Although it is other Immortals who lead
mortals to Immortality as patrons, it is TOO that grant them this power.
This is not known to anyone, even most Immortals.
    Why do they do this?  Well, they are basically looking for canidates
to join them.  As described in WotI, some Immortals have been know to be
drawn into the Vortex, thought to be the home of TOO.  Many Immortals
believe they are made into Old Ones, and in my campaign, they are right.
Why they do this is unknown.
    Why do TOO only do this in Mystarapsace?  Well, remember the weakend
dimensional barrier?  TOO are from another dimension.  They cannot enter
other spheres because the barriers there are full strength.
    There are several Immortals who have the names of other Gods, and this
causes some problems.  For example, there is an Immortal Thor, who gained
his status in the normal, Immortal fasion: he earned it.  Although he is
the Immortal Odin's right hand man, he is not his son, or even related.
But, there is also the god Thor, who is the son of the god Odin.  This can
cause some problems.  To be honest, I haven't come up with a solid
explanation, but here is my working theory...
    When The Old Ones decided to create the first Immortals, they felt it
would be easier to start with something that was already powerful.  So,
through various means, they tricked several gods to send one of their
avatars to Mystaraspace.  Once there, they took these over, and imbued
them with Immortality.  But they didn't completely wipe their identities
away, so they retained their names and personalities.
    Now, whenever an avatar wanders into Mystaraspace, they nab it, erase
most of it's memory, subdue their power, then put them on Mystara, to see
what they do.  Some of them, like Thor, eventually rise to Immortality.
    Integrating Immortals into the SPP, they become full members of the
divine community.  That is, they have their own realms in the Outer
Planes, where their petitioners go to upon death.  They have proxies, like
other gods.  Although their origins are different, I consider them to be
gods, for all intents and purposes.
    The relationship between gods and Immortals varies.  Many gods feel
that the Immortals are upstarts, and sneer at the idea of mortals reaching
their status.  Some, though, are fascinated by them, and are on good
terms.  Some just don't care.

    Well, that's all I can think of at the moment.  Any questions?
    Please note that I just sat down and churned this out, in the space
of twenty five minutes, so be kind.

               Leroy Van Camp III      van891@??????.edu
               "Cthulhu, eh?  I'll try and backstab him"

Previous Message: Mystara Space (Long)
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Month Index: October, 1995

SubjectFromDate (UTC)
Mystara and the SJ/PS paradigm    Leroy Van Camp III    12 Oct 1995 23:31:28
Re: Mystara and the SJ/PS paradigm    Ken Lipka    13 Oct 1995 12:50:05
Re: Mystara and the SJ/PS paradigm    Leroy Van Camp III    13 Oct 1995 15:13:13

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