My powers a very hazy shadow #DnD #RPG #Malazan

You ever see someone do something so well that you are just in awe? For example, I like to play some sports, basketball, football. But when I watch top professionals play the same sports it is like we are not even playing the same game.

Well I am trying to introduce more visuals in the boys campaign. Get better at describing what they see, especially in combat. It is slow work, takes a lot of practice. And I am also trying to build a truly unique and interesting campaign world for them. Something out of the ordinary. And I like to think I have come up with a few good twists.

But then I dived back into the Malazan series. And I am reminded how great and amazing a really well described and built campaign world can be. I like the Forgotten Realms books, they are good reading. And I liked the Dragonlance books. And of course the Wheel of Time and Lord of the Rings are absolute classics. But check out this piece:

“Once they reached the main shaft, it was four hundred paces to Twistings’ Nearlight. Unlike Deep Mine, with its thick, rich and straight vein of Otataral running far under the hills, Twistings followed a folded vein, rising and diving, buckling and turning through the limestone.
Unlike the iron mines on the mainland, Otataral never ran down into true bedrock. Found only in limestone, the veins ran shallow and long, like rivers of rust between compacted beds filled with fossil plants and shellfish.”
Excerpt From: Erikson, Steven. “A Malazan Book of the Fallen Collection 1.” Transworld. iBooks.
This material may be protected by copyright.
Reading that I can almost touch the rock they are talking about. And see the vein of unique rock that they are mining. And then when you get into what that Otataral really is, here is a breakdown from the Malazan Wiki:
Otataral was a magic-deadening reddish ore[1], generally sold in the form of dust, which superficially resembled rusted iron. It not only prevented the use of magic, it also prevented mages from accessing or opening their Warrens and could drive them insane (this may have been due to otataral itself or the forcible removal of access to their warren); an attempt to do so, or use magic on an individual holding otataral caused the effect to fail in a gust of chilly air. The effects of otataral could be circumscribed somewhat through encasing the metal in a dense material (such as a granite box) or a weapon’s sheath. Elder racial Warrens such as Kurald Galain and Tellann were immune to its effects.
Now that substance plays a minor role in the books. It is the foundation for one Empire’s powers, but is mainly mentioned in passing. And yet the writer put that much thought and work into coming up with something that is only peripheral to the overall story.
These books are great. And the story is terribly intricate. But more than anything what really drives me to read them is the attention to detail and depth of world building in it. Unlike the more traditional fantasy books there is not only a history of the world, but it impacts almost everything that the characters do. It is a world where almost every place where the action occurs is steeped in thousands of years of history, a history that often rises up to take a role in the story.
In my dreams I would find a group and a GM who had read all these books and would be willing to run a game in this world. It would be amazing on a level like playing football in the NFL.
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