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Review: Mordenkainen’s Tome of Foes Relased!

I originally spoke about what would and might be included in Review: Mordenkainen’s Tome of Foes – Pre-Release. But now that it’s here let me talk about what time Tome means:

Spelljammer and Planescape settings are both mentioned, Spelljammer with mentions of ships, including limited specks of the ships (size, expectations, etc.). Planescape is featured right in Ch. 1: The Blood War.

Ch. 4: Gith and Their Endless War goes with both Spelljammer and Planescape. I’ve also read and seen more about Sigil, the Citt of Doors. Something I haven’t heard much about or for in more than 10 years.

Mordenkainen’s Tome of Foes diffidently feels like problems of  Faerûn are but the start of what DM’s and Players will be able to get into.

Many (most) of the monsters featured are not from or on the Material Plane which is the  adventure setting for everything except Planescape.

Now I wait with batted breath as to what the next hardcover Adventure will be – I hope its Planescape – I don’t have the stomach for the wanki space travel and chrystal spheres of Spelljammer.

FYI: Wizards of the Coast’s code name for Mordenkainen’s was “Marathon”. The next books code name is “Broadway” and more information will be released in June 2018.

Planescape

Planescape would be great for 5e, and Adventure League. The Factions would correspond with the Factions of Planescape – Just need to slim down from the 15 factions, I’d suggest:

  • Fraternity of Order: These “Guvners” believe that knowledge is power; they learn and exploit both the natural laws of the universe and the laws of society. They recall the Sophists of Classical Athens.
  • Harmonium: Hardheads” believe that peace and stability can only be established under one rule — theirs. The planar faction known as the Harmonium is actually just a small part of a much larger political entity which rules over the entirety of the Prime Material world of Ortho. They have become less of a police force and more of a diplomatic body. The Harmonium now believes that the best way to spread order is to peacefully unite the Upper Planes under the banner of law rather than forced conversion to their ideals. They are related to present day authoritarianism, particularly religious evangelicalism and fundamentalism. They take offense to the term “Hardhead”.
  • Mind’s Eye: They emerged from the survivors of the Believers of the Source and the Sign of One. The belief is that everyone is the center of their own reality, that reality can be reshaped by the power of imagination and that each life is a test, every person has the potential to become a god.
  • Society of Sensation: Sensates believe that accumulating experiential knowledge through the senses is the only way to achieve enlightenment. Their headquarters is the Civic Festhall, which features an endless series of entertainments and a library of magically stored experiences. They are remniscent of ancient Epicurianism (if not hedonism more generally), as well as the more modern empiricism.
  • Sons of Mercy: who are concerned with redeeming and rehabilitating criminals, and one of the two factions that long ago joined to make the Mercykillers and divided in the wake of the Faction War.
  • Transcendent Order: The Cipher believe that by tapping into the ‘cadence’ of the planes and acting through pure instinct they can achieve a higher state of being. Their headquarters is the Great Gymnasium, where members can train to improve their bodies and minds. Their philosophy could be considered similar to Taoism and Zen Buddhism.

 

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2 Responses

  1. Chris Kelly says:

    I see from the cover photo of the article you have your Mordenkainen’s Tome of Foes (MToF). Can’t wait to get mine! It should be in the mail from Amazon.ca soon no doubt. What was the biggest surprise for you in MToF?

    • Brent Rogers says:

      I’m a little surprised the book starts by talking about the Blood War in the lower planes, and then goes on the mention many other items (monsters and lore) about Planescape but then doesn’t talk specifically about certain things like any of the factions, or Sigil, the city of doors.

      It really does read as a primer for the release of a full Planescape setting, and I wouldn’t be surprised if the next adventure hardcover wasn’t set in Sigil, or in the Outlands combating something that might tip the scales in the Blood War. Or perhaps the Gith fighting for resources. recreating the Dark Sun adventure where the adventure is directly combating and blocking the advance of Gith from raiding or gaining control of some artifact, but perhaps set in Forgotten Realms this time.

      I’m really hoping for a new world book. I’ve been done with the Realms for some time.

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