Friday, September 2, 2016

5 Favorite Greyhawk Resources

It's a slow blog week for me people, so let's talk about the publications that I use the most in my own campaigns. Ideally I'm an all inclusive Greyhawk fan. Every bit of lore is useful to me, or interesting to me, but realistically certain products will just be more important to me in the long run. So here's a quick list and why in no particular order:

1. Iuz the Evil: This is the absolute best source on the lands and evil schemes of the demigod of Pain and Evil. There is more mysterious locations, deadly destinations, powerful villains and background lore than any book you'll find on the north. You don't even need stats for Iuz himself in this book (he is detailed in the boxed set after all) because there is so many layers of baddies to get through in this sourcebook. The information is also editionless so it's relevant today as it's ever been.

2. The Scarlet Brotherhood: This book while thin in page count, is likewise the ultimate source on the Tilvanot Peninsula, the Amedio Jungle and Hepmonaland all in one place. You might not get much in the way of stat information beyond levels and alignment but if you are wanting to know the history and machinations of the secretive Scarlet Brotherhood monks this is a must have product.

3. The City of Greyhawk boxed set: Based part on Gygax's Gord novels and helped with a good dose of published Greyhawk lore, this boxed set, though weak in some regards will give you countless years of gaming material. The maps of the city and sewers alone are indispensable (though Denis Tetreault at Melkot.com improved on them) and there is scores of NPCs and organizations ready to populate an urban campaign more vibrant than anywhere else in the setting. Alot of the information presented in this boxed set also gets timeline bumped in later products like From the Ashes and Greyhawk: The Adventure Begins. It truly is a living city.

4. World of Greyhawk boxed set: The original red-gold boxed set built upon the earlier Greyhawk Folio and has been the benchmark for RPG worldbuilding ever since. The Living Greyhawk Gazetteer might have more fluff and stats, but it lacks the wonder and curiosity of this two book set. Where else can you go from an entry on unique trees to another on runes and glyphs? The maps of course are iconic as we all know. To this day most of my campaign building is still centered on the hex map format started with this map.

5. Greyhawk Adventures hardcover: It's no accident my top 5 favorite are all from the 1e/2e era. It was a golden age of setting development and TSR was never afraid to put out new sourcebooks in different formats such as this hardcover. It isn't the best product they ever put out, being weak in some areas, but from a DM's standpoint, the canon lore on mysterious places, monsters, NPCs and magic items are a must have for any true Greyhawk campaign. It's the type of book that every time I pick it up I read something new that I hadn't noticed years before.

That's all folks! I could go on to my top 10 and they'd mostly be modules I bet, so let's save that for a separate post someday!

1 comment:

Mystic Scholar said...

Great stuff, not to mention necessary, everyone of them.