Dragonlance Cosmology (that makes sense)

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Dragonlance Cosmology (that makes sense)

Post by redking » Fri Nov 24, 2017 9:15 am

The latest version of the Dragonlance cosmology in 3.5e gives us a separate Dragonlance cosmology is that is seemingly difficult to reconcile with Planescape. I have seen some very convoluted work-arounds to make the Dragonlance cosmology work within the Great Wheel or other multiversal cosmologies, but I am going to offer up a solution that keeps the Dragonlance cosmology separate yet part of the greater whole.

The Dragonlance cosmology has three outer planes: the Dome of Creation, the Hidden Vale, and the Abyss. The good, neutral, and evil deities have realms in these planes respectively. Planescape lore harps on the ignorance of the people of Krynn when they describe Takhisis as having a realm in “the Abyss” when the people of the Planescape setting know well that the realm of Takhisis is in the Nine Hells (Baator). Indeed, if you were in Baator then there would be no physical obstruction to getting in (getting out is another issue altogether).

There is no real contradiction here – the Dragonlance cosmology is at once part of the greater cosmology, and separate all the same. This is the plan of the High God. Furthermore, any universal laws, pacts, or other such planar arcana (such as the ‘Pact Primeval’ between Asmodeus and ‘the gods’) is suspended as it relates to Krynn. Anyone (or deity, arch devil, or demonlord) that has an objection can take that objection up with the High God. None have dared thus far.

The Dragonlance cosmology works thus. When a spell or ability is used to take a creature to the planes is used on Krynn, the creature is taken to a realm within the Dragonlance cosmology. Even if the creature attempts to go to a known place in the planes (for example, Dis in Baator), the creature will arrive in a place within the Dragonlance cosmology, generally the closest place (in this case, the realm of Takhisis within “the Abyss”). The same goes for attempts to go to the ethereal or astral planes – the High God of Krynn has ‘reserved’ areas of these planes and encapsulated them within ‘the gray’. Entering the astral plane or ethereal plane brings one to a portion of those planes associated with Krynn, and it is not possible to reach the astral or ethereal planes proper if the starting point is Krynn.

When a creature from Krynn travels the planes from Krynn, they are traveling within the self-contained Dragonlance cosmology. They have no way of traveling from the realm of Takhisis located within the Nine Hells to the city of Dis. There is no point of exit to do that.

Such a character could however cross planes within “the Abyss” by simply traveling. All of “the Abyss” is connected despite being on different planes (from the perspective of a resident of Sigil). For example, a creature from Krynn traveling “the Abyss” could go from the realm of Takhisis in the Nine Hells, to the realm of Morgion in the Grey Waste. From the perspective of the traveler they haven’t changed planes, its just all “the Abyss”.
The same goes for the realms within the Dome of Creation and the Hidden Vale.

The only way person from Krynn (or even someone from outside Krynn currently in Krynn) can get to a plane within the standard cosmology is to travel the planes from outside of Krynn. If someone in Krynn can get to another Prime Material world outside the purview of the High God, then they may travel to the planes of the Great Wheel outside of the Dragonlance cosmology. Traveling to another Prime Material world is the only way to leave the Dragonlance cosmology. During the Age of Mortals the High God’s plan was suspended, so direct travel to the planes of the Great Wheel was possible at this time (although exceedingly rare as magic was compromised). When the gods returned to Krynn at the end of the War of Souls, the High God’s plan was reestablished.

Summoning or binding follows the same principle. Summoning or binding spells only summon or bind those creatures that are accessible from within the Dragonlance cosmology. Attempting to summon or bind creatures outside of the Dragonlance cosmology, even with true names, fails.

The reality of the Dragonlance cosmology explains the cluelessness of the Krynn natives that somehow end up in places like Sigil. Even they do not know how it works, and neither do the people of Sigil.

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