Big Mac wrote:But sure, an old city might be almost totally gone (especially if the demons attacked it). It could just be a few small fragments that remain (like the Roman stuff that gets dug up under London). I figure that if equiceph bones are left then anything that lasts as long as bones might turn up. That might not be scientifically accurate, but the "rule of cool" dictates that you don't want all the equicephs to be running around without heads and hands and not wearing any pants, because their pants rotted away.
There might be enough of an excuse to have a few equiceph liches (who are not working for Ahmut's Legion) or some sort of deathless equicephs (archliches, perhaps) who can interact with the PCs and work with them to free the equiceph undead from domination by Ahmut's clerics.
Huh. I hadn't thought of that - actually RPing the ancient culture, and having NPCs from the old culture. I should think that if one were wanting to do that, liches, or some sort of non-evil deathless being, would certainly be a way to have them in the present and able to convey the sense of culture, or something.
One of my favourite Spelljammer characters, is an archilich, called Sharanger Szeltune, that Ed Greenwood created for SJR1 Lost Ships
. (Archliches are a special type of "good lich" invented for that product.) Anyhoo Sharanger Szeltune is a woman that lived hundreds of years ago and who came from Blackmoor in a spelljamming ship. Ed Greenwood doesn't make it clear if she is from Dave Arneson's Blackmoor or Gary Gygax's Blackmoor, but if she was from ancient Greyhawk's Blackmoor, she would know a ton of old stuff.
I kind of had her in mind, when I thought about having some sort of equiceph lich/archlich/deathless/whatever.
Big Mac wrote:The brigdadine article says that italian people wore that sort of armour. So if they also have ties with the Roman empire, you get the tribes connection and an armour conection from one real-world race. Perhaps that means that Italian culture would be a good baseline to build equiceph culture from.
That's kind of the reason that I referred to Central Asian
brigadine. On the page I linked, there's a photograph near the bottom that looks much, much more like what the equiceph is wearing in the illustrations. Most especially like the Miniatures Handbook illustration. specifically, there's an illustration of an equiceph (or a very, very similar creature) in The Horde
Volume 1, page 48, that shows it dressed in a type of brigadine.
[Edit to include illustration]
There's various schools of thought here ... some say that dwarevs, elves, and other such beings would typically dress in garb of their own culture, or similar to it, and another than says they'd likely incorporate to whatever culture they were near or a part of. The illustration happens to show an equiceph in brigadine - but, there's a whole lot of armor appearing in various styles that would fit into "brigadine", so I wouldn't say that it should be pinned down to Italian=Rome=Ancianet Rome=Tharque=Equiceph.
I suppose that, logically, if the equicephs were around for thousands of years, they would go through the sort of "arms race" people have in various parts of the real-world, and slowly move from primative armour and weapons to more advanced armour and weapons.
The brigadine armour is possibly a reflection of the "clock stopping" at the point where their race was destroyed. Assuming they were not instantly wiped out, I can imagine a situation where the equiceph armoursmiths were given as much metal as possible and told to equip the entire race for the ultimate battle...that they sadly ended up loosing.
So, Ahmut would be able to dig up a ton of equicephs, perhaps in mass graves, wearing brigadine armour. But if you sent in an archologist to dig up older sites in the equiceph tribal lands, you might well dig up a farmer surrounded by non-warlike grave goods.
Big Mac wrote:OK. So if we are looking at banishment, in a similar way to the British deportation of criminals to Australia, then that does tell us one thing, that is there, but not directly stated: The equicephs had some sort of seafaring culture that was strong enough to allow them to travel across the seas. I say this because if they did not have seafaring culture, how would they be able to banish criminals over the sea?[...]
There's a *lot* of good ideas in here ... I really like this. I was kind of taken with some of the ideas, especially the different ways of effectiing the banishment with or without criminals and a crew. Although, it's difficult, for me, to imagine a seafaring race being one with hooves. It seems it would be like an uneasy thing for them to be on a rolling, wet surface. ... although, if they were bound and determined to do so, there's no reason that they wouldn't invent something to get around their hooves onboard. ... but, that seems terribly unlikely the more I think about it. ... although, I *do* like the idea of equicephs using boats that have seated positions, like smaller rowboats, and canoes and such.
Given what Ripvanwormer said about the equiceph lands being land-locked, I suppose it is less likely that they would be a seafaring race*. And you are right about the horse-footed seafarer thing being a potential issue.
* = Maybe D&D has sea-horses somewhere.
The one thing that bugs me is the thing about banishing criminals across the sea. It does demonstrate the fact that these equicephs know enough about the world to know there is land across the sea.
I suppose a giant portal (perhaps even one that got purverted to turn it into a gateway the demons came out of) would be another way to cross the sea. But, if that is what they meant when they said "across the sea", why wouldn't they talk about "crossing the world via the portal" instead.
Icarus wrote: Big Mac wrote:* = A side benefit of a seafaring equiceph culture, is that I can give the long dead race a number of spelljamming helms and have some of them create an equiceph colony on one or more of the celestial bodies of Greyspace.
It wasn't 'til I read this part that I realized that no matter what I thought about this aspect, and it finally hit me ... as far as they are from any coastline, in an entirely land-locked area ... it's far
more likely that the equicephs must've had some other method of travel other than boats, magical or otherwise. They could've easily used magic to effect the banishment. They could've used a method of teleporting others (a Gate, a Teleportation circle, a Banishment spell, or somesuch). Which, in a way, tells us just as much about the equidephs. ... they really hadn't any method of travel "across the sea" from where they are. They could travel by river theoretically, but, the nearest ocean or sea is at least a couple of Empires away, geographically - therefore, they must've had some kind of magical means, of doing so. And if they are able to effect that kind of spellcasting, there were obviously high-level enough casters to use the magic. It's difficult for me to pin down precisely what kind of magic they'd use - despite the fact that "peaceful" implies more like druids, shamans, or certain priests, there's nothing that would seem to indicate that wizardry, sorcery, psionics, or anything else should be precluded.
I suppose the other option, is to give the equicephs some sort of flying boat. That way they can cross the sea in the air.
I wasn't really thinking of turning the entire race into a spelljamming race (just hoping to be able to have some living equicephs in other parts of Greyspace that have a Chainmail tie-in) but if there were some equicephs with some sort of flying ship, air ship, baloon, or whatever, they could sail west on the trade winds and drop off their banished people.
If you cast a feather fall spell onto an equiceph criminal, you could literally throw them overboard (without killing them).