Synn?

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Synn?

Postby micky » Sun Mar 19, 2017 5:32 pm

A forum search didn't come up with anything so let's ask away!

So just what is Synn/Dolores anyway in game terms.....as my campaign is heading to a face to face showdown with her.. and the 1020 Almanac will need to specify exactly what her powers are....other than being the sex you up hotter than hell ultimate Synn ex Machina in the background plot device she has become.

We have a couple versions of her out there... which is the correct one. Which one should be the correct one.

1)Champions of Mystara she is a Greater Night Dragon which details her abilities.. most notably since she is a Princess of Glantri.

no mention is made of being able to shapeshift from Dragon to human form... and her spell abilities.. roughly as a 10th level magic user.

2) Glantri: Kingdom of Magic :lol: In essence she is merely a bigger badder black dragon with ability to change to human form at will (got you there Champions..) and a M20/M36 one at that and a different breath weapon along with some anti magic stuff. No wishes per century

3) PWA1 and II (od&d) which makes Dolores a M36 and Synn.. merely a chaotic dragon though specific events make mention of her being a Night Dragon. A reference to ice cold scales..and her breath weapon way back in PWA1.... little else regarding their unique abilities or their weaknesses

4) PWA III (ad&d) same as the other PWA other than making her a M20,


igorning Glantri:Kingdom of Magic :lol: as we love to do. You have 2 different versions of them here, one from the Princess Ark and another from the PWA. A wish might give one the ability to transform back and forth to human form or it might give one M36 abilities.. but not both. So what is the best way to present her... go with the PWA and ignore the PRincess Arc.. or is there a way to tie together both presentations of her.


oh and one more thing.... Night Dragons. Are they still dragons for all intents and purposes other than their special powers...

do the abilities of the Secret Craft of Dracology apply to Night Dragons?

do mortal Dragons still recognize Night Dragons as they do other dragons, even when they are in mortal form.
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Re: Synn?

Postby Sturm » Mon Mar 20, 2017 10:46 am

I don't think canon has answers, so I suppose you are looking for opinions?
I think Bruce Heard introduced Night Dragons as undead. Let me check, yes in Dragon 154 and 171 is said they guard an ancient secret in Oceania and other dragons view them as abominations. It is also said they made a pact with some Entropic power.
I think there are different possibilities for their (and Synn's nature):
a) The Entropic power is Thanatos and they guard some ancient Outer Beings secret, which Thanatos plans to use somehow.
b) The Entropic power is Hel
c) The Entropic power is Idris, or Synn is a mortal manifestation of Idris herself (I dropped hints about this hypothesis in my Who's Who in the Wyrmsteeth part 2 article in Threshold issue #9)

While I think hypothesis B could stand on his own, with the main purpose of Hel/Synn being giving more power to humanoids (this would fit with the raising of Kol as Prince) the different hypothesis are not necessarily mutually exclusive.

For example, Synn could be indeed the mortal identity of Idris, the mysterious sponsor of Idris could have been Hel, and they could have an Outer Being artifact hidden in Oceania, that they plan to use to further their main goal (more Entropy, more dragons, more humanoids, less humans).
1020 AC could well be the start of their plan, with humanoid attacks all over as in the humans vs orcs things described in canon...
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Re: Synn?

Postby Cthulhudrew » Mon Mar 20, 2017 6:52 pm

micky wrote:We have a couple versions of her out there... which is the correct one. Which one should be the correct one.

1)Champions of Mystara she is a Greater Night Dragon which details her abilities.. most notably since she is a Princess of Glantri.

no mention is made of being able to shapeshift from Dragon to human form... and her spell abilities.. roughly as a 10th level magic user.


In the original writeup of the Night Dragons (Dragon #163), an example of the spellcasting abilities of a greater night dragon is given via Synn's spell list. She does indeed have polymorph self in her usual spell list, which suggests that shapeshifting is not a natural ability of theirs.

As Sturm notes, night dragons are undead versions of dragons. As such, they are presumably outside of the regular hierarchy of dragons and fully ensconced within the hierarchy of Entropy.

do the abilities of the Secret Craft of Dracology apply to Night Dragons?


Good question. Offhand, I'd say probably not- as the craft seems to center on the study and adoption of "standard" dragon abilities and features, and night dragons are presumably not within the scope of that. On the other hand, if a dracologist were to become aware of their existence and devote time and resources to emulating their abilities? Why not? I could actually see night dragon dracologists arising from a fusion of dracology and necromancy.

do mortal Dragons still recognize Night Dragons as they do other dragons, even when they are in mortal form.


Presumably while they're in dragon form, yes. I'd imagine most adult dragons would have knowledge of and be aware of the existence of night dragons, which is probably seen as a perversion of regular living dragons. Physically, they would be aware that they look different than other dragons, even if they aren't aware of what they are.

Whether they would recognize them in "mortal" form (by which I assume you mean non-draconic shapes), I don't think they'd necessarily recognize them with any more ability than they might recognize another dragon in non-draconic form.
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Re: Synn?

Postby Hausman » Mon Mar 20, 2017 7:56 pm

Well observing Andrew,Good point!

=)
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Re: Synn?

Postby Hausman » Mon Mar 20, 2017 8:06 pm

Just in review DM #163: (some sentences in Bold are particulary important about Night Dragon powers:)

The Night Dragon

Night Dragons are particularly chaotic dragons that have become the undead servants of Immortals in the Sphere of Entropy. Night Dragons are sometimes sent to the prime material plane to accomplish a mission for their masters. For example, after the destruction of Oceania,Synn (a greater dragon) was allowed to remain and guard an ancient secret in her lair. She looks like the shadow of a dragon,totally black, except for her eyes that glow slightly. Very faint shimmering of dark blue or purple reveal some of Synn.s physical features, such as scales and muscles.
Night dragons are solid on the prime material plane.

Night dragons are masters of guile and treachery. They feed off the sorrow they inflict upon their victims. They torment and curse a foe rather than destroy it. Physical combat is not viewed as a means of achieving their goals; lies are far more acceptable.

The breath of a night dragon causes a billowing cloud of absolute darkness. Any living being in the area of effect must Save vs. Breath Weapon or fall unconscious. The darkness dissipates in 1d6 turns. The breath cannot be used in windy areas.Night dragons have the ability to enter the plane of entropy through any area of absolute darkness. In most cases, the dragon uses its breath to cause darkness,then disappear into the other plane. Likewise, it may reappear only from a dark spot.

A greater dragon may wrap its wings around an unconscious foe, which causes the victim.s soul to be trapped in the plane of entropy. The body is either destroyed or, more likely, possessed by the dragon. It retains its intellect and memories, and becomes a fanatic follower of the dragon.Minor foes often are transformed into
bats, which are then used as spies. A night dragon maintains a telepathic link with its followers that allows it to see and hear through them (except in the Hollow World).

Greater dragons like Synn are granted one wish per century they spend on the prime material plane, in addition to their spells. Night dragons use wizard spells.A lesser dragon inflicts 3d10 hp damage with a bite, and 1d6 + 1 hp damage with its claws. A greater dragon inflicts 4d8 +8 hp damage with its bite, and 1d12 +2 hp with
its claws. A successful blow from any night dragon is similar to the touch of a ghoul, producing a Save vs. Paralysis.
Night dragons are particularly vulnerable to light and spells affecting undead. A light spell causes 1d10 hp damage to the monster. A raise dead will destroy a lesser dragon, or inflict 3d10 hp damage on a greater dragon. Direct sunlight from the Outer World sun will destroy any of these dragons. Both dragons require at least + 1
magical weapons to be hit.A cleric can turn a lesser dragon as a vampire, and a greater dragon as a nightshade
(see the D&D Companion Set, Player’s Companion, page 11). These dragons cannot be turned within 10 miles of their lairs or on the plane of entropy.

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Re: Synn?

Postby Hausman » Mon Mar 20, 2017 8:57 pm

In particular, from what I understand in the conversations with Clenarius (Thibault Sarlat) who was responsible for developing the plotline of the Heldannic Knights on Polakatsikes -Davania (post Geoff) the version of Mystaran Almanac is linked to the relationship of Synn with Thanatos - due to the plot Of Vanya's imprisonment:

"it all comes from the real vanya who after being trapped by thanatos is slowly (re)gaining shape and power.
she needs followers badly.
Davania is an hectic place where chaos is coming fast hence her all direction efforts to "convert
"
(Thibault)

Where it (original idea) from?

"He spent a millennia trying to find a way to circumvent this detail, but all his efforts met failure. That's why he had prepared an island filled with dragons who were working for him. He had attracted a group of wyrms with promises of great power and turned them into Shadow Dragons. The dragons did got power and a safe haven, their ask, to protect their islands from any intruders. They have kept the place safe ever since."


http://www.pandius.com/facade.html

Now with Wolfgang's new conquest policy and the new leader of the Order (Anna von Hendricks) Thanatos has gradually lost its power among the Heldannics (with the exception of a few extremists and intolerant of pure Hattian blood).

Of course this is the version considered in the MA, according to the proposals presented by Bruce in KW, DM and Gaz and according to the original G: KoM and PWA, Sturm's suggestions are well accepted depending on the style, campaign or scenario that the DM choose.
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Re: Synn?

Postby Hausman » Mon Mar 20, 2017 9:04 pm

The suggestion of Andrew is very good.

I think a great arc of adventure (particularly about Jaggar - the Master od Dracology) would be mastering the arts of draconology versus Night Dragons. However (accordly PWAIII) the only available track for studies would be Synn's scale which Malachie du Marais presented to Jaggar (I particularly like Andrew's idea of ​​Necromancy aid in this case).

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Re: Synn?

Postby Cthulhudrew » Mon Mar 20, 2017 10:18 pm

In regards to how the night dragons and regular dragons correspond, I wonder if we shouldn't (or at least couldn't) include a third, middle category to the night dragon hierarchy much as the standard dragons are generally split into three. I did a quick workup of a build; I haven't had a chance to calculate the XP, though it looks offhand as if the Greater Night Dragon might be slightly askew from the traditional xp calculation chart (although now that I look at it, the extra xp very likely come from their wish ability, which would carry a pretty hefty price tag). Their spellcasting is rather nonstandard compared to other dragons, as well, so I'm a bit torn as to whether to leave them with only 3 levels of spellcasting, or give them a single 4th level spell as well:

Night Dragon, Median*



Median Night Dragon Damage, Turning, and Spells
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Re: Synn?

Postby Hausman » Mon Mar 20, 2017 11:35 pm

Good indeed.

Night Dragon Median Could occupy some position / function among the Night Dragons in Oceania Island.
Just thinking about its habitats and ecology.
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Re: Synn?

Postby Mariutti82 » Wed Mar 22, 2017 6:03 pm

I want just to drop my 2 cents on the topic ... even if it's just in my campaign.

I'm playing the 5th edition and put Synn behind The Rise of Tiamat campaign ...
Long story short, she persuaded the dragon ruling Wyrmsteeth to embrace the plan of bringing Tiamat on Mystara and
to help the "Cult of the dragons" in doing it.
Moreover she turned some of the wizards of Glantri (renegade draconologists) to perform the actual ritual...

In my campaign I made some assuptions:
The renegate wizards replace the Red Wizards presented in the adventure;
The cult of the dragon is actually a new branch of the cult of Idris, banished from Denagoth;
Tiamat is actually an avatar of Idris.

About Synn, since I'm using 5th edition rules, I've considered her to be an Ancient Shadow Dragon (starting from the
Ancient Red Dragon and using the shadow dragon template). I used the red dragon as starting point 'cause that's the
way she appears in Shadow ove Mystara videogame ... she can shapeshift at will and as Dolores I think I made her
a 18th level wizard (on top of 20 levels).

A last side note: wasn't the artifact in Oceania a Thanatos one? or wasn't it watched there in service of Thanatos?
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Re: Synn?

Postby Sturm » Thu Mar 23, 2017 10:23 am

Mariutti82 wrote:A last side note: wasn't the artifact in Oceania a Thanatos one? or wasn't it watched there in service of Thanatos?

Now that you say this, I think I may have read the same too somewhere in canon, but I cannot find a reference now.
Fanon works mention it here http://pandius.com/actvocan.html (Codex Immortalis of Marco Dalmonte) and here: http://pandius.com/dragstuf.html (a campaign of Gordon McCormick).

Rise of Tiamat could indeed work well with Idris..
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Re: Synn?

Postby Mariutti82 » Thu Mar 23, 2017 10:41 am

Mariutti82 wrote:A last side note: wasn't the artifact in Oceania a Thanatos one? or wasn't it watched there in service of Thanatos?


I found this page on the Vault http://www.pandius.com/nearimm2.html that speaks about candidates to Immortality.
On Brannart McGregor entry, it states:
"Prince Brannart McGregor: (M33, patron: Thanatos, Entropy) Brannart has finally uncovered enough information to petition for an Immortal sponsor. He is presently crafting his gift before travelling to the sight of petition- the temple of Thanatos on the Isle of Oceania."

About the canon source, I think it was one of "the voyage of Princess Ark" articles featured on Dragon Magazine...
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Re: Synn?

Postby Monkey » Thu Mar 23, 2017 10:58 pm

Here is the video game depiction of Synn, just to muddy things:
http://villains.wikia.com/wiki/Synn

Wikipedia on shadow dragons, the AD&D cousin to night dragons:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shadow_dragon

The Forgotten Realms Wiki on Shadow Dragons:
http://forgottenrealms.wikia.com/wiki/Shadow_dragon

Someone here is equating night dragons (Synn in particular) with umbral dragons. I like what the umbral dragons bring to the monster description:
http://dailybestiary.tumblr.com/post/71269651119/umbral-dragon

Here is everything I could find in relation to Synn, Delores Hillsbury, and night dragons, in The Vaults:
http://pandius.com/fenswick.html
http://pandius.com/blckhill.html
http://pandius.com/hillsbry.html
http://pandius.com/teatreac.html

http://pandius.com/undead_d.html
http://pandius.com/lsrndrag.html
http://pandius.com/grtndrag.html
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Re: Synn?

Postby micky » Fri Mar 24, 2017 1:01 am

Sturm wrote:I don't think canon has answers, so I suppose you are looking for opinions?


hah.

Opinions on D&D fandom are like women D&D players... One merely isn't just looking for them...

one begs for them. :lol:

Lots to read up on here. Keep the opinions coming.. I'm more a sponge here to see how you all think Synn should be presented ... as more than a simple hot and sexy, sex you up kind of plot device.. but an active living breathing undead blood and ichor D&D combatant..
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Re: Synn?

Postby Traianus » Fri Mar 24, 2017 6:12 pm

When one of our 3.5e campaigns ran afoul of Synn, we treated her as an Ancient(?) black dragon that acquired the Greater Night Dragon template and several class levels in sorcerer to further her magic ability (in our DM's opinion, needed for someone of her stature in Glantri). She also had a magic necklace that allowed her to shapechange at will (and not be detected as a shapechanger).
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