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Manirian Scratchpad III: The Dragonewts of Ryzel


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And it's time for more of my babblings about Maniria.  This time, I'm turning my attention to the mysterious, the weird... the Dragonewts of Ryzel.

 

What we know about them is... pretty limited:

  • They have been there since they marched with Palangio the Iron Vrok into Maniria (History of the heortling people)
    • It appears they remained after Palangio left
  • There are approximately 8,000 Dragonewts in Ryzel (I forgot to add this before)
  • They have their own Inhuman King (many sources)
  • They hunt humans in Ryzel, but nowhere else (Guide)
  • They have absorbed a few Slontan ruins into their territory since the flood, such as Gualal and Hermat (Guide)
  • They trade insects used to make a brilliant red dye to the Trader Princes of Jubal in exchange for something that humans find eccentric or even humiliating (Guide)
  • They use Newtlings as slaves (Guide)
  • There is a famous tailed priest named New Wyrmish who is rather disgraced among the Dragonewts, but is very open to humans
  • There MIGHT be communication to Dragon Pass newts

 

....And that's it.  Literally, that's it. That's... not a lot.  If  a game was set in Jubal or Kaxtorplose (or anywhere in Nimistor, or in Handra), there would need to be a lot added.

 

I was planning on writing some interpretation and filling gaps, but I'll do that tomorrow.  Night.

Edited by Nevermet
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The Guide seems to assert that all Dragonnewts were killed off by the start of Time, except the ones in Kralorela and Dragon Pass; all the others are offshoots of that.

There are 8000 Dragonnewts in Maniria (by contrast, 200,000 in Kralorela and 20,000 in Dragon PAss)

If they came with Palangio, they were originally connected to the Third Council and the creation of Nysalor.  They would have been part of the Dragon Pass community originally, thus the connection to the ones there now.

Since they hunt all over Maniria, they probably have Dragon Paths to favored hunting grounds.

 

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An interesting thing about Ryzel is that it doesn't seem to have been in contact with the EWF.  So the God Learners had a native dragonewt population which they could test their magics on before using them on the battlefield elsehwere.

There's also an odd quirk in the history of the Genertela:CotHW boxed set.  The God Learners learned of the secret of speaking to the Dragonewts as a result on a spirit raid on the cult of Drolgard.  They tend teach this knowledge to others in Nochet, of which one of the first students is Vistikos Lefteye who then speaks to the Dragonewts of Dragon Pass.  So it looks as if the God Learners learned of the secrets of Auld Wyrmish from Ryzel.  However more recent works (the Guide and the Middle Sea Empire do not support this chronology.

Digression: If there were no Dragonewts outside Kralorela and Dragon Pass at the Dawn, where did the Teleosan Dragonewts come from?  Mercenaries by the God Learners or the New Dragons Ring?

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3 minutes ago, metcalph said:

 

Digression: If there were no Dragonewts outside Kralorela and Dragon Pass at the Dawn, where did the Teleosan Dragonewts come from?  Mercenaries by the God Learners or the New Dragons Ring?

Given the God Learners killed the god of the island... maybe they imported the Dragonnewts in order to do that.

 

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Here's some odds and ends of thoughts from WF#14, which is the original source for all things Dragonewt.

"The Ancestral Dragons are known to have laid eggs of their own, just as the Cosmic Dragon had laid the Cosmic Egg. The favored nesting place for them was the place of their mystic mating dance, Dragon Pass, although some came from other parts of the world." - maybe Ryzel is one of them, and the Inhuman King sent the dragonewts there with Palangio, but really for the ultimate goal of finding one of these ancient nesting sites.

"The origins of the dragonewt race lies in the childhood of the True Dragons. This was before the coming of plants, animals, or humans; and some say even before the coming of mountains, rivers, and sky. They lived and grew in innocence for different lengths of time, and during that time they were immature. Sometimes these immature dragons clutched in innocent bliss and left behind them eggs which were, like the parents, immature. In that era when there was no limit to the creativity of the world, the eggs hatched and brought forth the race of dragonewts.
Because there were several matings, there were several 'tribes' of dragonewts. Several of these tribes were joined by common parentage through the dragon known as the Wonderous Mother of Many."

"When the gods of Disorder and Chaos began infringing upon the world the dragons and their kin did nothing. They were populous and powerful but did not move when their friends and surroundings were destroyed, nor did they seem to be affected when vast portions of their own, lesser kin were wiped out by the invasions of Chaos. In fact, it seemed as if the entire dragonewt race was willing to let itself be passively slain." - the two places of resistance were Kralorela (resisted in Strength) and Dragon Pass (resisted in Weakness). Likely if Ryzel was originally a nesting ground, it was destroyed or broken.

Also note the route of the Dragonewt march (if you haven't seen, a dragonewt expedition with particular dragonewt characters is described in the text):

"Once through Dorastor they will cross the Kartolin Pass and descend into Ralios. There are many dragonewts there, all barbarians, but the Master expects to negotiate or fight his way through them. The triceratops is intended to be a gift for one strong tribe which he knows of and was friendly with the last time he contacted them (about 180 years ago). Master Lord.Prince has mentioned that they will be visiting the fabled Marshes of Ralios to retrieve something, but he will mention no more than that. After visiting the marshes the party will
enter the Nidan Mountains at High Llama Pass and thereby enter Fronela. They will travel overland through Jonating territory and other lands as needs be. The final goal is the ancient and legendary city of Sag, at the far edge of the world....There, in that city of legend and danger and sin lies the final goal of the party. Only Master Lord-Prince knows what that is."

Whether the "marshes of Ralios" are actually in Ralios, or actually are Ryzel, is unclear as that part of the world was not well-described in those days (e.g. Ken Rolston had a campaign in the "New Fens of Ralios" which are actually the marshes around Handra).

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IIRC the Ryzel colony of dragonewts was founded by or under Palangio the Iron Vrok during the Bright Empire, possibly as a part of the peace deal Nysalor made with the Pass newts.

If we regard the dragonewts of Dragon Pass as newt orthodoxy, the Ryzel newts seem to be the second most orthodox group in all of Glorantha. The Kralori newts with the use of the Dragon Emperor as their inhuman king are weirder. (But then, they would say that they are the truly orthodox newts, and the Pass ones are corrupted by their survival in weakness.)

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Holy crap, responses!

 

Let's see.  First, based on what I've read, it seems like the Ryzel newts came with Palangio.  I don't fully understand everything that implies, but it is very different than if they were in Ryzel at the Dawn.  It also creates the question of why did the Dragonewts stay in Ryzel rather than retreat with Palangio, and why did Arkat's forces let them?  I'm assuming the answer to the second question is that it takes a near impossible amount of effort to prevent immortal humanoid dragons from setting somewhere.  It also sets up a strange consequences of the Gbaji Wars for Maniria: where the Aldryami were almost the only elder race present, now two more settle down.

 

9 hours ago, metcalph said:

An interesting thing about Ryzel is that it doesn't seem to have been in contact with the EWF.  So the God Learners had a native dragonewt population which they could test their magics on before using them on the battlefield elsehwere.

This was very much on my mind: How would the Godlearners have dealt with Newts living nextdoor to Slontos?  I'd imagine there was a tension between GL curiosity, and caution over ticking off the alien Dragonewts.  Beyond that... no idea.

 

 

 

 

Also, as an aside, could someone point me toward where to read about Dragonewt involvement in the Bright Empire?  What I've found is very fragmented.  

 

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5 hours ago, jajagappa said:

Here's some odds and ends of thoughts from WF#14, which is the original source for all things Dragonewt.

"The Ancestral Dragons are known to have laid eggs of their own, just as the Cosmic Dragon had laid the Cosmic Egg. The favored nesting place for them was the place of their mystic mating dance, Dragon Pass, although some came from other parts of the world." - maybe Ryzel is one of them, and the Inhuman King sent the dragonewts there with Palangio, but really for the ultimate goal of finding one of these ancient nesting sites.

"The origins of the dragonewt race lies in the childhood of the True Dragons. This was before the coming of plants, animals, or humans; and some say even before the coming of mountains, rivers, and sky. They lived and grew in innocence for different lengths of time, and during that time they were immature. Sometimes these immature dragons clutched in innocent bliss and left behind them eggs which were, like the parents, immature. In that era when there was no limit to the creativity of the world, the eggs hatched and brought forth the race of dragonewts.
Because there were several matings, there were several 'tribes' of dragonewts. Several of these tribes were joined by common parentage through the dragon known as the Wonderous Mother of Many."

"When the gods of Disorder and Chaos began infringing upon the world the dragons and their kin did nothing. They were populous and powerful but did not move when their friends and surroundings were destroyed, nor did they seem to be affected when vast portions of their own, lesser kin were wiped out by the invasions of Chaos. In fact, it seemed as if the entire dragonewt race was willing to let itself be passively slain." - the two places of resistance were Kralorela (resisted in Strength) and Dragon Pass (resisted in Weakness). Likely if Ryzel was originally a nesting ground, it was destroyed or broken.

Also note the route of the Dragonewt march (if you haven't seen, a dragonewt expedition with particular dragonewt characters is described in the text):

"Once through Dorastor they will cross the Kartolin Pass and descend into Ralios. There are many dragonewts there, all barbarians, but the Master expects to negotiate or fight his way through them. The triceratops is intended to be a gift for one strong tribe which he knows of and was friendly with the last time he contacted them (about 180 years ago). Master Lord.Prince has mentioned that they will be visiting the fabled Marshes of Ralios to retrieve something, but he will mention no more than that. After visiting the marshes the party will
enter the Nidan Mountains at High Llama Pass and thereby enter Fronela. They will travel overland through Jonating territory and other lands as needs be. The final goal is the ancient and legendary city of Sag, at the far edge of the world....There, in that city of legend and danger and sin lies the final goal of the party. Only Master Lord-Prince knows what that is."

Whether the "marshes of Ralios" are actually in Ralios, or actually are Ryzel, is unclear as that part of the world was not well-described in those days (e.g. Ken Rolston had a campaign in the "New Fens of Ralios" which are actually the marshes around Handra).

the Mother of Many material is in the Guide, but the rest is completely new to me.  Is that in WF also?

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2 hours ago, Joerg said:

If we regard the dragonewts of Dragon Pass as newt orthodoxy, the Ryzel newts seem to be the second most orthodox group in all of Glorantha. The Kralori newts with the use of the Dragon Emperor as their inhuman king are weirder. (But then, they would say that they are the truly orthodox newts, and the Pass ones are corrupted by their survival in weakness.)

One of teh things I'm curious about is when did Ryzel get its Inhuman King.  That seems like a big deal

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40 minutes ago, Nevermet said:

the Mother of Many material is in the Guide, but the rest is completely new to me.  Is that in WF also?

That was all from WF #14 (which is available in pdf now from Chaosium).  

Except for the Ken Rolston "New Fens of Ralios" note - that derives from an old Different Worlds article (issue #15) which is buried somewhere in my archived collection.

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46 minutes ago, Nevermet said:

Let's see.  First, based on what I've read, it seems like the Ryzel newts came with Palangio.  I don't fully understand everything that implies, but it is very different than if they were in Ryzel at the Dawn.  It also creates the question of why did the Dragonewts stay in Ryzel rather than retreat with Palangio, and why did Arkat's forces let them?

Theory: Ryzel was a God Time Dragonewt settlement that they made a deal with Nysalor to resettle. Perhaps to uncover and "revive" the eggs there or something to that effect. Bottom point: it was a return, not a colonization.

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26 minutes ago, Sir_Godspeed said:

Bottom point: it was a return, not a colonization.

I agree with that thought.

1 hour ago, Nevermet said:

it seems like the Ryzel newts came with Palangio.  I don't fully understand everything that implies, but it is very different than if they were in Ryzel at the Dawn.  It also creates the question of why did the Dragonewts stay in Ryzel rather than retreat with Palangio, and why did Arkat's forces let them?

Palangio was Nysalor's warlord/hero (he came from Rinliddi originally - among the remnants of the ancient bird riders) and led the advance of the Bright Empire through the Holy Country and on into Maniria/Slontos.  He was the primary foe of Arkat initially.

Palangio probably brought the dragonewts as mercenaries (although they could have served as slaves/conscripts to bear the goods of the army).  The dragonewts, I'm sure, had their own agenda despite whatever Palangio thought - a return, a rebirth of a new Inhuman King (aka Dragon in humanoid form), etc.

Why did Arkat's forces let them stay?  Perhaps a Dragon whispered in Arkat's ear promising secrets of Dragon Pass???

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35 minutes ago, Sir_Godspeed said:

Theory: Ryzel was a God Time Dragonewt settlement that they made a deal with Nysalor to resettle. Perhaps to uncover and "revive" the eggs there or something to that effect. Bottom point: it was a return, not a colonization.

I love this.  There is so much one can do with this.

 

"Those aren't hills.  They're spines."

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55 minutes ago, Nevermet said:

Do the Dragon Pass newts use slave labour, or is that unique to Ryzel?

I think their scouts count as that.  Maybe an occasional newtling, and of course some dinosaurs serve as beasts of burden.

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2 hours ago, Sir_Godspeed said:

Isn't there something about Newtling Bachelors going to serve the Dragonewts as servants rather than slaves? I did raise my eyebrow at the mention of slavery in Ryzel.

The Guide doesn't say much at all, but it says slavery:

"Relations with Other Races: Newtlings are sometimes used as slaves by dragonewts, which they do not seem to mind. They are generally shy and fearful, especially of the humans who often chop off their tails as food." (P. 108)

It also notes, however, that Bachelors in general are struck with curiosity & wanderlust.

 

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11 hours ago, jajagappa said:

Palangio probably brought the dragonewts as mercenaries (although they could have served as slaves/conscripts to bear the goods of the army).  The dragonewts, I'm sure, had their own agenda despite whatever Palangio thought - a return, a rebirth of a new Inhuman King (aka Dragon in humanoid form), etc.

Why did Arkat's forces let them stay?  Perhaps a Dragon whispered in Arkat's ear promising secrets of Dragon Pass???

Don't forget that Nysalor cursed the Dragonewts at the same time he cursed the Trolls, but a True Dragon awoke and ate the curse. Since then, Nysalor had Dragonewt mercenaries.

So, the Dragonewts of Ryzel might be the result of the failed curse, or the results of the curse once the True dragon ate it, or something else.

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13 hours ago, Nevermet said:

Do the Dragon Pass newts use slave labour, or is that unique to Ryzel?

Newtling bachelors risking a term as slaves/indentured servants (and in quite a few cases, food) for a reward in dragon magic they can use as adults to defend the breeding ponds are what I assume to happen in Dragon's Eye, too. Maybe not in the Elder Wilds or Ormsland, and certainly not on Teleos or in Kralorela. (The 'newts there use Kralori humans instead? By force of Empire?)

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6 hours ago, Joerg said:

Newtling bachelors risking a term as slaves/indentured servants (and in quite a few cases, food) for a reward in dragon magic they can use as adults to defend the breeding ponds are what I assume to happen in Dragon's Eye, too. Maybe not in the Elder Wilds or Ormsland, and certainly not on Teleos or in Kralorela. (The 'newts there use Kralori humans instead? By force of Empire?)

Love this because it totally makes sense.

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9 hours ago, soltakss said:

Don't forget that Nysalor cursed the Dragonewts at the same time he cursed the Trolls, but a True Dragon awoke and ate the curse. Since then, Nysalor had Dragonewt mercenaries.

So, the Dragonewts of Ryzel might be the result of the failed curse, or the results of the curse once the True dragon ate it, or something else.

I did not know this at all! Sigh

Which book is this in?

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1 hour ago, Nevermet said:

I did not know this at all! Sigh

Which book is this in?

Cults of Terror p.17 "Against the trolls and dragonewts the cult was harsher. The god Nysalor’s armies carried war to the gates of the Castle of Lead, but instead of storming that impregnable fortress, the god cursed his foes, and the light of his curse shriveled their children. The descendants of Kyger Litor everywhere afterwards suffered the Trollkin Curse. The dragonewts were conquered and became mercenaries for the rulers in Dorastor."

Trollpak p.18 "Gbaji then sent a great curse against the trolls and the dragonewts. A true dragon woke for a moment at the curse, and he devoured the energies, so his race was not troubled..."

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19 hours ago, Nevermet said:

I did not know this at all! Sigh

Which book is this in?

Guide to Glorantha p128:

Quote

Against the Heortlings, trolls, and dragonewts the cult was harsher.
...
The dragonewts were conquered and became mercenaries for the rulers in Dorastor.

 

Guide to Glorantha p131:

Quote

365 Theyalans: High Council of Genertela broken by dissent over the project to make Osentalka, the Perfect One. Trolls, dragonewts, and Orlanthi from Dragon Pass rebel and cast away their membership.

Guide to Glorantha p191:

Quote

When the Second Council unveiled a plan to construct a god, the trolls objected heavily and withdrew, followed shortly thereafter by the dragonewts. One of the first acts of the new golden god Nysalor was to curse the trolls and dragonewts. The dragonewts sloughed off his curse and sent it into the maws of a hungry dragon. But the trolls were overcome, and tragically began birthing trollkin instead of healthy offspring.

It is buried in several areas, but that is the gist.

My take was that the Dragonewt Curse was eaten by a True Dragon, but it allowed them to be enslaved by Nysalor.

 

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