Raven Queen

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Raven Queen

Postby Marco Fossati » Tue Feb 14, 2017 8:26 am

since it's mentioned as Warlock Patron in the last 5e UA, I'd like to know more about the Raven Queen.

Is there anyone who can help me?
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Re: Raven Queen

Postby Tim Baker » Tue Feb 14, 2017 9:55 am

The Raven Queen is one of the deities in 4th Edition's Dawn War pantheon. She was once mortal, and managed to kill the previous god of death. She subsequently erased her true name from history. She reigns over the Shadowfell. There's a fair amount of information about her and her followers in the Shadowfell boxed set and a couple of Dragon issues.

If Zeromaru sees this thread, I'm sure he'll do a much better job than I did providing information.
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Re: Raven Queen

Postby Zeromaru X » Tue Feb 14, 2017 6:03 pm

As we are talking about the Raven Queen and her potential inclusion in the FR canon... here is a small recap of her "core" story I've made for someone who asked about her in D&D Beyond forums. I guess we can twist them for our purposes, but I'm of the opinion that one must know the canon before doing changes, for those changes to be useful for everyone (not just for me... or the person doing the changes).

I drew from many sources, but if you need them, I will can gladly provide them. From memory only: Dungeon 171 (Deities & Demigods: The Raven Queen), Dragon 411 (Winning Races: Kenku), and Dragon 427 (Channel Divinity: Nerull), and Divine Power (4e sourcebook).

______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
The Raven Queen was once an especially powerful mortal (there is no mention of her original race in canon), who was either a powerful sorcerer-queen (who was also one of the first humans who learned magic directly from Corellon) or a mighty warrior, who died during the Dawn War (the ancient battle between gods and primordials during the creation of the cosmos). The cause of her dead is conflictive in canon. She either died fighting in the war, or was a victim of one of the plagues unleashed by Nerull during this period of time. Regardless, fearing Nerull's actions and his ambitions to become "the King of all Gods", Corellon and Pelor, with aid of Sehanine and Moradin, strengthened her soul with more qualities than she had possessed in life: magical might, intellectual brilliance, shrewd discernment, unshakable courage, cold allure, and colder pride. This was done for Nerull to have a plaything to waste his time instead of trying to kill all mortals or follow his ambitions of being the King of the Gods.

So, Nerull took the bait: the soul enthralled him to the point he could not think in other stuff. So, he gave it a form and made her his queen. He called her "Nera" (this is not her true name, just the name Nerull gave to her after giving her a new form—her true name is forgotten and perhaps forever lost). Although "Nera" wanted nothing with Nerull, she was ambitious (perhaps a side effect of the strengthening of her soul?) and wanted to get Nerull powers for her, so she accepted his advances. Some say that Vorkhesis, the first of the sorrowsworn, is the fruit of this union (that maybe was born as a consequence of Nerull's... non-consensual advances on her).

During the final stages of the Dawn War, "Nera" finally was able to understand Nerull's ways to obtain power from the souls of the dead, and fed those souls, gaining immense powers. So, she fought against Nerull when the god was at his weakest (after a gruesome battle between Nerull and a primordial known as Athuam the Falling Sky) and killed him, absorbing his divinity. The other gods (who allowed this to happen, as they wanted to get rid of Nerull), fearing the appearance of a second Nerull, immediately moved and forbid her to take the portfolio of the dead, seeing the way she used the souls of the dead to kill Nerull. Thus, she was able only to become the goddess of death but not of the dead. She said that this was unjust, because she was unlike Nerull, and that soured her relationship with the other gods ever since.

Not long after, she made great efforts to circumvent this prohibition, like leaving Pluton to live in the Shadowfell, or expunging her true name from the cosmos, calling herself the Raven Queen from then on. She also sealed Nerull's holiest temple in a domain of dread, so Nerull cannot return to the world of the Nentir Vale (as Nerull still exists in some form—ie. its incarnation in the world of Oerth).

The Raven Queen, however, was able to get more power than the portfolio of death, thus becoming a major power in the Nentir Vale world. She aided Corellon in his battle against Lolth, and was able to stole Lolth's portfolio of fate, thus becoming known also in the Feywild as the power of destiny. And, in the War of Winter (a conflict that confronted god against god a few "years" —in god's reckoning— after the Dawn War) she asked over the porfolio of winter, that was the purvey of Khala, the original goddess of winter, as her payment for helping the gods to kill Khala. This was done because the Raven Queen was the only deity who knew how to kill gods in a way that they cannot easily return to life.

A few races believe they owe their existence to the Raven Queen. Kenkus believe themselves her first creations. According to their myths, her first action after her ascent to godhood was to to ascent normal ravens, transforming them in kenkus (this myth plays an important role in the novel "The Last Garrison"). They also believe they lost their ability to fly because they lost her favor when they turned to revere the demon lord Pazuzu, dividing kenku society into those who revere the demon lord and those who revere the Raven Queen.

The shadar-kai descent from her first human worshipers. According to this myth, when the Raven Queen was still a new denizen of the Shadowfell, a tribe of humans known as Shadar Kai approached to her and proposed a deal: they promised to serve as her mortal agents, and in exchange, they asked for incredibly long life and freedom from frailty. The Raven Queen accepted, and the tribe went to live in the Shadowfell, where they evolved in the race they are today. Their tribal name became the race's name when they interacted with people from the mortal world again.

The sorrowsworn are all ascended shadar-kai, that gained this status after doing great deeds in her service.

The revenants, as well, owe their existence to the Raven Queen, as she used them as her agents in the mortal world.

The vryloka (living vampires) also believe that was one of her aspects, the Red Witch, the one who gave them the blessing of being vampires without the taint of undead.
Last edited by Zeromaru X on Tue Aug 15, 2017 4:31 pm, edited 9 times in total.
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Re: Raven Queen

Postby Tim Baker » Wed Feb 15, 2017 6:34 am

I knew Zeromaru would have the answers for us. :D
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Re: Raven Queen

Postby Big Mac » Wed Feb 15, 2017 11:36 am

Dragonhelm suggested that the Raven Queen was the same deity as Wee Jas on Facebook. I've never heard of that before. Does anyone know what he is referring to?
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Re: Raven Queen

Postby ripvanwormer » Wed Feb 15, 2017 12:31 pm

Big Mac wrote:Dragonhelm suggested that the Raven Queen was the same deity as Wee Jas on Facebook. I've never heard of that before. Does anyone know what he is referring to?


They're both neutral goddesses of death, though their similarities stop there. Of course, there's nothing wrong with ruling they're the same in your campaign, or using fluff from one as inspiration to flesh out the other.

There was an earlier thread where Dragonhelm pointed out that the 5th edition DMG notes the similarities between the two, and Mortellan made a comic that featured Wee Jas admitting she was the Raven Queen.

Here's Mortellan's comic: http://www.greyhawkonline.com/wogcomic/ ... ip226a.htm
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Re: Raven Queen

Postby Zeromaru X » Wed Feb 15, 2017 5:55 pm

In fact, the 5e DMG says she is a sort of combination of Hel (the nordic goddess) and Wee Jas.
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Re: Raven Queen

Postby willpell » Thu Feb 16, 2017 1:01 am

I always figured her for being a straight-up Expy of the Morrigan, name changed solely for the sake of being copyrightable....
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Re: Raven Queen

Postby bricingwolf » Sat Jul 01, 2017 5:21 pm

The Raven Queen is my absolute favorite core DnD deity.

In my games, she is variously:

Eberron: an ancient and godlike archfey of Thelanis. She and her identical* sisters, The Red Witch and The Silver Knight, were born to the same humanoid race that eventually became the Vryloka and Shadar-kai. They saved their people from annihilation, changing their nature, but the cost was high. The Three lost their true names, and the island nation of Vas Shadar was shrouded in mist and disappeared. The Vaes Shadar became, in even thirds, the Shadar-kai and two types of Vryloka. To this day, the Three watch over and guide their people, and help keep them from being consumed by the nature of their realm.

Forgotten Realms: her and her sisters are beings of the Shadowfel, who have recently become gods of fairly minor power, but combined are quite powerful. They are helping the Shadar-kai and Netherese rebel against Shar and her priesthood.

Homebrew world of Albaron: as Eberron, but the Feywild and shadowfell are more places in the physical world.

*the three are identical except for their eyes and hair, and obv how they dress, etc.

Anyway, just some other ideas for using the Queen.
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Re: Raven Queen

Postby Tim Baker » Sun Jul 02, 2017 7:33 am

bricingwolf wrote:The Raven Queen is my absolute favorite core DnD deity.

Those are good ideas for ways to import her into other settings.
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Re: Raven Queen

Postby bricingwolf » Sun Jul 02, 2017 3:47 pm

Tim Baker wrote:
bricingwolf wrote:The Raven Queen is my absolute favorite core DnD deity.

Those are good ideas for ways to import her into other settings.

Thanks!
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Re: Raven Queen

Postby Big Mac » Sat Jul 08, 2017 1:29 am

ripvanwormer wrote:
Big Mac wrote:Dragonhelm suggested that the Raven Queen was the same deity as Wee Jas on Facebook. I've never heard of that before. Does anyone know what he is referring to?


They're both neutral goddesses of death, though their similarities stop there. Of course, there's nothing wrong with ruling they're the same in your campaign, or using fluff from one as inspiration to flesh out the other.

There was an earlier thread where Dragonhelm pointed out that the 5th edition DMG notes the similarities between the two, and Mortellan made a comic that featured Wee Jas admitting she was the Raven Queen.

Here's Mortellan's comic: http://www.greyhawkonline.com/wogcomic/ ... ip226a.htm


Thanks Rip. I always like Mortellan's comics.
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Re: Raven Queen

Postby Big Mac » Sat Jul 08, 2017 1:35 am

Tim Baker wrote:
bricingwolf wrote:The Raven Queen is my absolute favorite core DnD deity.

Those are good ideas for ways to import her into other settings.


Welcome to The Piazza Bricingwolf.

Tim was right about those being good ideas. I don't suppose that the Raven Queen would fit into Dark Sun. That just leaves older campaign settings to use her with. Do you think she could be made to work with Ghostwalk?

BTW: You might want to pop over to the Introduce yourself here topic, say "hi" and tell people a bit about yourself and the things you like.
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Re: Raven Queen

Postby Dragonhelm » Mon Aug 14, 2017 2:53 am

Wee Jas was also the inspiration for Pharasma from Pathfinder, according to James Jacobs from Paizo.

As far as I'm concerned, it's the same deity with different aspects, depending on what setting one is in.
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Re: Raven Queen

Postby Zeromaru X » Tue Aug 15, 2017 12:10 pm

Updated the answer about the Raven Queen
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