Dragonlance Dragonlance Adventure & Prelude Details Revealed

Over on DND Beyond Amy Dallen and Eugenio Vargas discuss the beginning of Shadow of ther Dragon Queen and provide some advice on running it.

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This epic war story begins with an invitation to a friend's funeral and three optional prelude encounters that guide you into the world of Krynn. Amy Dallen is joined by Eugenio Vargas to share some details about how these opening preludes work and some advice on using them in your own D&D games.


There is also information on the three short 'prelude' adventures which introduce players to the world of Krynn:
  • Eye in the Sky -- ideal for sorcerers, warlocks, wizards, or others seeking to become members of the Mages of High Sorcery.
  • Broken Silence -- ideal for clerics, druids, paladins, and other characters with god-given powers.
  • Scales of War -- ideal for any character and reveals the mysterious draconians.
The article discusses Session Zero for the campaign and outlines what to expect in a Dragonlance game -- war, death, refugees, and so on.

 
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Levistus's_Leviathan

5e Freelancer
This is not the only treatment, and probably not the standard one. I don't think any of the mainstream theorists of punishment - Von Hirsch, Hampton, Duff, etc - take the view that physical detention of a person takes away their free will. Nor does US criminal law, which does not treat being imprisoned as sufficient evidence of a lack of voluntariness in conduct.

The existentialists, whose account of free will is quite different from the contemporary mainstream punishment theorists, also don't hold that physical detention removes free will.

Off the top of my head I can't think of a philosopher who has defended the view you set out in your post.
You are clearly much more versed in philosophy than I am, so I won't even try to refute what you're saying. But, clearly, imprisoning or killing someone at least restricts/removes some of their free will.
 
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Eubani

Hero
You are clearly much more versed in philosophy than I am, so I won't even try to refute what you're saying. But, clearly, imprisoning or killing someone obviously at least restricts/removes some of their free will.
Free will does not negate the consequences for actions taken by said will and it only complicates matters further when said action impact on another's free will. Any consequence can be said to go against the free will of the acting being, but things would get ugly quickly without consequence. Such a damn sticky topic isn't it.
 


pemerton

Legend
@AbdulAlhazred

The following seems meaningful: He was a tall fellow, suave but evil to the core!

Now imagine Cugel in the Dying Earth saying "I'm yet to meet a tall fellow who was not of good heart."

It seems pretty natural to think that the meaningful statement He was a tall fellow, suave but evil to the core! contradicts Cugel's contention that All tall fellows are of good heart. But this all seems to depend on but being able to take statements of value as one of its arguments, and on the logical relation of contradiction obtaining between statements of value.

There has been a lot of ink spilled on these topics. (The relevant Google search terms are Frege Geach problem and metaethics expressivism). I think some of the technical moves are more successful than others. But it's not trivial to sort out, for the anti-objectivist. (I'm not denying that the objectivist also has some problems, like finding a persuasive account of the metaphysical grounding of value claims - that's the core of Hume's argument against them.)
 

pemerton

Legend
You are clearly much more versed in philosophy than I am, so I won't even try to refute what you're saying. But, clearly, imprisoning or killing someone at least restricts/removes some of their free will.
I don't think that's clear at all. It takes away their freedom to act, but not their freedom to choose.

I mean, not being 8' tall means that there are things I can't do that I might hope to do. But it's not a burden on my free will. (Contrast, say, brainwashing or hypnotism, at least as they are typically portrayed - I don't know much about them as real phenomena.)

EDIT to add: free will is about choosing (at least in conventional treatments of the topic). Whereas freedom is generally a broader notion, that might include the range of options. Detention clearly affects freedom - it reduces options - but it doesn't obviously put a burden on the capacity to exercise choice. (It might in ways that are not obvious - eg the psychological damage it inflicts might be comparable to brainwashing or similar. But a clearer case is Geneva Convention-compliant treatment of prisoners of war: they are not to be brainwashed, have their spirits broken etc - and so clearly retain their free will and their human dignity more generally - although their freedom is much reduced.)
 

Levistus's_Leviathan

5e Freelancer
I don't think that's clear at all. It takes away their freedom to act, but not their freedom to choose.

I mean, not being 8' tall means that there are things I can't do that I might hope to do. But it's not a burden on my free will. (Contrast, say, brainwashing or hypnotism, at least as they are typically portrayed - I don't know much about them as real phenomena.)
I'd argue that humans don't have "perfect" free will. Your physical limitations do restrict your free will. Being free to act is an inherent part of free will. So some people inherently have less free will than others because they have more limitations and we're able to restrict the free will of others through imprisoning, maiming, or killing them.
 

Off the top of my head I can't think of a philosopher who has defended the view you set out in your post.
This is an "appeal to authority" argument, and is, therefore, spurious. There is no reason to suppose that someone who writes "philosopher" in their job description has any more insight than anyone else.
 

Contrast, say, brainwashing or hypnotism, at least as they are typically portrayed - I don't know much about them as real phenomena.
These alter the target's perception of reality. You have talked about physical limitations on free will, but these impose mental ones. One can only interreact with what you perceive to be real. If, maybe a consequence of hypnosis, someone's reality is altered so that they believe they have no legs, it has exactly the same effect on their free will as if they actually had no legs.

Consider the idea of a constructed reality (as in the Matrix). Someone inside the constructed reality can act exercise their free will, as constrained by what they perceive to be real. However, someone outside the constructed reality could change what they perceive and thus control their actions. So their free will is actually an illusion. Now, if you consider that there is no way to prove we are not inside a constructed reality, the implication is that free will is an illusion, dictated by what we believe to be real.
 




pemerton

Legend
This is an "appeal to authority" argument, and is, therefore, spurious. There is no reason to suppose that someone who writes "philosopher" in their job description has any more insight than anyone else.
Appeals to expertise aren't spurious. They're how human knowledge is developed, promulgated and built upon.

All philosophy is amateur. Without evidence one person's opinion is as valid as anyone else's.
Plato is far from the last word, but I don't think it's the case that anyone's opinion about the logical relationship between authority and value is as good as the one set out in the Euthyphro. There's a reason that argument is still an object of study and discussion.
 

Remathilis

Legend
For me, this is the only thing that makes it interesting as a setting.

Similarly, in Dark Sun you need to be a gladiator, or a templar, or a Veiled Alliance member, or similar.

These settings are all about their tropes and core motifs. That's all they bring to the table!
You're not winning points with me by mentioning Dark Sun, but I'll bite.

Dragonlance isn't just about archetypes, it's about organizations. The Mages of High Sorcery aren't a type of magic like a preserver or defiler, it's a complex world-spanning organization that requires you to join them or not practice magic. All the arcane magic archetypes you can think of end up funneled into guild mage or renegade. To pull a different example; in Star Wars you have the main two types of Force users (Jedi or Sith) both you also have Force Adepts, Night Witches, etc. If every Force user had to be a Jedi or sith, it would be pretty boring.

Which is why Dragonlance feels small. You're either a robe wearer or a criminal. The only religion that matters is the true Gods. I guess warriors get a little more options (barbarian, knight, soldier, etc) and has there ever been anything involving criminal organizations in Krynn? Any major guilds or syndicates? It seems like 99% of all crime are done by kender for non-evil reasons. I do profess ignorance here, but I've never heard about any rogue related in Dragonlance but handlers, the non-thief way of having thief skills.

You can be a gladiator in Dark Sun, but you can have dozens of other origins for your warrior and it's not like the Gladiator Union will force you to join or stop fighting.
 

You're not winning points with me by mentioning Dark Sun, but I'll bite.

Dragonlance isn't just about archetypes, it's about organizations. The Mages of High Sorcery aren't a type of magic like a preserver or defiler, it's a complex world-spanning organization that requires you to join them or not practice magic. All the arcane magic archetypes you can think of end up funneled into guild mage or renegade. To pull a different example; in Star Wars you have the main two types of Force users (Jedi or Sith) both you also have Force Adepts, Night Witches, etc. If every Force user had to be a Jedi or sith, it would be pretty boring.

Which is why Dragonlance feels small. You're either a robe wearer or a criminal. The only religion that matters is the true Gods. I guess warriors get a little more options (barbarian, knight, soldier, etc) and has there ever been anything involving criminal organizations in Krynn? Any major guilds or syndicates? It seems like 99% of all crime are done by kender for non-evil reasons. I do profess ignorance here, but I've never heard about any rogue related in Dragonlance but handlers, the non-thief way of having thief skills.

You can be a gladiator in Dark Sun, but you can have dozens of other origins for your warrior and it's not like the Gladiator Union will force you to join or stop fighting.
The 2e Dragonlance campaign setting provided a fair amount of info on the world that did a lot to make it seem more open to different types of campaigns. When @Micah Sweet talks about the amount of info in the old settings, that's a classic example imo. As an example, there was information for a warrior class Mariners that could give inspiration to a pirate themed campaign. There was also a rogue class called a Con Artist/Prestidigitator so there's your non-kender criminals. Perhaps we'll see some of that stuff in a DM's Guild release. Dragonlance Nexus has a minotaur release scheduled so hopefully that has a nautical bit to it since minotaur are often sailors on Ansalon.

I agree completely that the main novels and game releases tend to focus on the Knights of Solamnia and Mages of High Sorcery so much that it tends to make the setting feel pretty restrictive. A good DM could make the struggle against them a pretty interesting campaign. A pirate themed campaign where the group is frequently put at odds with the Knights. A renegade warlock that seeks to remain under the Conclave's radar to further their patron's goals.
 


Faolyn

(she/her)
This seems a non-sequitur to me.

According to Gygax's PHB (p 33) and DMG (p 23), the following things are valued by Good:

[T]he tenets of good are human rights, or in the case of AD&D, creature rights. Each creature is entitled to life, relative freedom, and the prospect of happiness. Cruelty and suffering are undesirable.​
[C]reatures of [chaotic good] alignment view freedom and the randomness of action as ultimate truths, they likewise place value on life and the welfare of each individual. Respect for individualism is also great.​
To the chaotic good individual, freedom and independence are as important to life and happiness.​
Creatures of [neutral good] alignment see the cosmos as a place where law and chaos are merely tools to use in bringing life, happiness, and prosperity to all deserving creatures.​
[C]haracters of lawful good alignment follow these precepts [of law and order] to improve the common weal. Certain freedoms must, of course, be sacrificed in order to bring order; but truth is of highest value, and life and beauty of great importance. The benefits of this society are to be brought to all.​
Creatures of lawful good alignment . . . are convinced that . . . good is best defined as whatever brings the most benefit to the greater number of decent, thinking creatures and the least woe to the rest.​

We can see that there is a range of viewpoints here, about the permissibility of social/interpersonal trade-offs in welfare (LG accepts these, CG doesn't), and also about how to rank the values. But there is unanimity that life, wellbeing and happiness are important. Truth is also important, especially to the LG. There is a notion of "decent" or "deserving" creatures having entitlements that others don't - this is where the scope exists in Good alignment for inflicting punishment, and/or for using violence in self-defence and defence of others.

Notice that knowledge is not mentioned here at all, but freedom is. Even the LG don't reject freedom as a value; they just rank it differently from the CG.
My logic is: knowledge can be used for both good and evil. So can free will. Same with fire, crafts, trade, nature, and wisdom, which Dragonlance also considers to be Neutral.

It's not that having free will is bad or not good; it's neutral. And having free will as your portfolio does not make you a Good god. Especially if you're also smashing mountains into people for daring to use that free will.

Especially since @Teemu had originally said that the gods of good were focused on maintaining free will, not actually fighting evil... but maintaining free will is specifically the job of the chief God of Neutrality.

Also...

this is where the scope exists in Good alignment for inflicting punishment, and/or for using violence in self-defence and defence of others.
Sure... but what does it say about "cruel and unusual punishment," or killing innocents along with the guilty?

Because unless you're really trying to claim that saying "yo, gods, I want to stop evil so give me power" deserves death (and don't forget: the gods only smooshed him after he asked for power, not in the 80 years the kingpriest spend committing evil acts in the Good gods' names), or that every single person who died in the Cataclysm and the apocalypse that occurred because of it deserved the death penalty... the gods' punishment far outweighed the crime.

Really, the best you can claim is that the gods have no fine motor skills and very bad aim. In which case it changes from deliberate genocide to accidental genocide.

But what it really says is that the Good gods didn't care about mass murder in their name and only got upset when the kingpriest wanted a promotion. Sure, they yanked spells, but they didn't actually do anything to stop the murder in their name.
 


Levistus's_Leviathan

5e Freelancer
has there ever been anything involving criminal organizations in Krynn? Any major guilds or syndicates? It seems like 99% of all crime are done by kender for non-evil reasons. I do profess ignorance here, but I've never heard about any rogue related in Dragonlance but handlers, the non-thief way of having thief skills.
Dragonlance also feels empty compared to other settings. Like, cities mostly don't exist. Just villages and relatively small settlements. The landscape just feels like if you took the Forgotten Realms but removed the interesting locations (cities) and just replaced them with more empty wilderness and small homlets. There is Haven, but it's pretty lacking in theme compared to some of the major cities of other settings (the Sword Coast's city-states, Sharn of any of the major cities of Eberron, Dark Sun's cities, etc) and it has a pretty low population of just 200,000. It's probably because the gods killed everyone, but it's still weird, IMO.
 

Micah Sweet

Legend
Dragonlance also feels empty compared to other settings. Like, cities mostly don't exist. Just villages and relatively small settlements. The landscape just feels like if you took the Forgotten Realms but removed the interesting locations (cities) and just replaced them with more empty wilderness and small homlets. There is Haven, but it's pretty lacking in theme compared to some of the major cities of other settings (the Sword Coast's city-states, Sharn of any of the major cities of Eberron, Dark Sun's cities, etc) and it has a pretty low population of just 200,000. It's probably because the gods killed everyone, but it's still weird, IMO.
I think all settings have more interesting things in them than just cities.
 


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