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ZEITGEIST Jiesse, City of Brass, Salamanders (Zeitgeist Spoilers)


I'm trying to figure this one out and I don't see it thoroughly explained in adventure 10 that is coherent with the rest of the narrative. Adventure 10 informs us that Jiesse was once part of the elemental plane of fire, but the Ancients found a way to essentially cut it off from the plane of fire and make a separate plane out of it. However in doing so, there was still a family/tribe/force of Salamander's left on the portion of the plane of fire that became Jiesse.

The Ancient conscious says the ancients took care to find planes that did not have life forces, and from what I've gathered, the Obscurati also did extensive research about the planes to ensure they were also not linking to a plane that could easily bring an invading force. Obviously, the Ob missed the Gidim thoughtseeds on Ratios - because it was barren and the thoughtforms are incorporeal and theoretically invisible, but the Salamanders of Jiesse had a palace. By the time of the Ob's ritual, their numbers seem enough that the Sultan believes he's able to conquer Risur. How was this missed by both the Ancients and especially the Ob? Am I missing something?

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Let me see.

The Sultan is wrong. The book states that a century ago, there was a sizeable salamander presence on Jiese. However the enslaved efreeti Liesi stirred up trouble, and they fought a massive civil war. The surviving sultan is inbred, dumb, and rules over only a few thousand salamanders. The book briefly describes a room with a map showing how the Sultan thinks that the world/Lanjyr is extremely tiny. He thinks all he has to do is conquer a few thousand humans and he will rule the world. He is wrong.

Why did the Ancients take Jiese when it had creatures on it? Best guess, they made a mistake. They tried to carve off an uninhabited section of the Plane of Fire, but they got a wedge with a few salamanders on it.

Why did the Ob fail to notice the salamanders? Well, they must have seen them. The Player's Guide is fairly explicit in saying that there are salamanders on Jiese. I would have to assume that the Ob investigated and found them to be a fairly negligible threat, particularly since they previously had no real way of invading Lanjyr. I'd assume 'use worlds without life forces' was more for the new worlds they would be plucking out of the multiverse.

Side note, if you google 'City of Brass' you'll eventually find a map for an awesome and enormous palace on the Plane of Fire, which makes a great fit for the sultan's palace. I can probably find you a copy if it would be useful.

Andrew Moreton

I largely agree with evrything Arkwright said with the emphasis that the Sultan is dumb and has no idea how big a place the planet is or how dangerous the inhabitants are . He is lucky that when he killed the wolf cub circumstances managed to blame someone else of the Ash-Wolf would have exterminated him on day 1. He has nothing like the resources to take Risur let alone the rest of the world.

How they got there , I would assume the ancients check was quick and potentially flawed they were fighting a war against deadly opponents and needed this fast and as suggested they needed a plane of fire and the best they could do was one with a few Salamanders. I also think the explanation of them slicing a bit off the plane of fire may be a hold over from an early draft it does not seem to fit the rest of the cosmology with the other planets all being complete planes. I think the standard planar osmology of the 4 elemental planes , positive, negative and Ethereal does not fit this multiverse and instead there are many planes swimming around in the sky which could become a plane of fire or other plane. I do still stick with the Higher planes but have them cut off so I suppose that makes the plane of space the gateway to the Astral and the outer planes.

There are some really awesome city of Brass source materials out there , most of them way to epic to stick in Jierre as anything other than a map. One of them could be an interesting alternate plane of fire in book 12

One problem with the Jiese lore of book #10 is that it makes no sense for there to be a "main" elemental plane of fire in the first place. The cosmology revolves around suns/stars and planets in a wide universe. The concept of a "main" elemental plane of fire simply does not fit with the Zeitgeist cosmology, and I strongly believe this to have been an honest, innocent mistake.

For that matter, the Ancient history appendix repeats this mistake when referring to a "main" elemental plane of earth.

I would recommend tweaking the Jiese lore for this to match. Efreet lord over a star-empire that they pompously call the "Dominion of Flame," or something similar; they do not come from a "main" plane of fire.


My major objection to the presentation of Jiesse in book 10 (and the "Sultan is dumb/inbred" stuff in this thread) is that the hallmark of Jiesse upon the setting is that it allows for high-tech (or to be slightly more accurate "allows precision technology to function.")

I would rather Jiesse populated by Canal Martians, or Modrons, or look like an abandoned Myst-clone, than .... some angry salamanders?

I actually tried my hand at writing up a standalone ZG adventure where the players go to Jiesse with Rock Rackus ... sort of in the vein of John Carter. But I just couldn't make it work. I desperately wanted Jiesse to have a certain "feel" or theme to it, and nothing about the Sultan or salamanders or whathaveyou was able to dovetail with "the font of technology" or "mysterious ancient wisdom" vibe I wanted to impose upon it. :(

The way my own GM, arkwright, handled this was to say that the salamanders indeed had access to all manner of advanced technology, but they were literally too stupid to actually use said technology to its fullest extent. I think there is some merit to this interpretation, because it allows the PCs to make a significant breakthrough in uncovering the lost technology of Jiese by prying it from the hands of the salamanders using high-tech tools as billy clubs.


Mmm. I believe it says that Jiese was once part of the Efreeti empire, and the salamanders (pre-inbreeding and civil war) were miners. Thus I reasoned that the Efreeti were high-tech, and left a lot of tech behind- specifically, constructs/robots. I turned Jiese into fiery literally-Nier Automata world, with hundred-foot-tall excavation robots and hordes of smaller mining robots.

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