Large Luigi, the omniscient (?) beholder v2.0

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Since people can no longer post to the original thread, the old thread may or may not ever get moved here, people are obviously interested in continuing the discussion, waiting for something to happen may result in loss of interest, and mine was the last post in the original thread (and I believe I can still edit it)... I'll start off a new thread, repost my last post here, and edit my last post in the old thread pointing readers to this thread.

For newcomers wanting to read the beginning of this thread, go to the original Large Luigi, the omniscient (?) beholder thread.

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Hmmm... I'm thinking that a page on Large Luigi, the Spire, and the functioning of orbi (see my post in the appropriate thread over at the Piazza for my views on the orbi) would make a great addition to my website. I'll have to get on that. For now though, the way I run this for my campaign (your mileage may vary, of course)...

The Spire was created by the original beholder gods, who may not even be around anymore (or at least are currently not actively influencing the beholder race in any apparent way). Their power lasts, however. The only current gods we know of, the Great Mother (who claims to be the creator deity, as many deities often do, although she clearly cannot be) and her immortal spawn Gzemnid, are definitely not responsible for the Spire and the revealed true purpose of the beholder race. In fact, she may even be responsible for the current destructive path that the race is on (or at the very least, is a product of that path), and likely doesn't even know about the beholder race's ancient true purpose.

The Spire can only collect and store information witnessed by, or known to, beholders. It does not contain all knowledge of everything everywhere. If a beholder wasn't there, Large Luigi doesn't know it. Likewise, it does not store any future knowledge. When Large Luigi climbed the Spire, he acquired the knowledge download of what was known only up to that moment in time. I handle the question of "what does Large Luigi know?" by asking myself "is there ANY chance that a beholder(kin) may have observed this at some point in history?". I usually give him the benefit of the doubt.

So how was Large Luigi affected? We know about the physical changes (regarding his eyes). To suddenly realize the true (lost) purpose of beholders really opened up his eyes (sorry about that, couldn't resist), and changed his philosophy. Now his purpose is to collect information. Not to sell information. He'll meter out a little information to chosen individuals whom he thinks will take that information and put it to a use that will enable them to collect information that they will report back to him. Essentially what he doles out will repay him in even more information (plus interest!) that he otherwise would not get. Sure, he may (or may not!) charge for the information, only because that makes the PCs value it so much more. Financial reward is not his game.

This is how you control the effect of Luigi on your campaign. He is NOT a font of all that is, was, or will be! In fact, for those in search of info, he's rather stingy with it... unless you've become his friend by action and by words. Even then, being True Neutral, there is no way he'll knowingly let out information that he thinks will ultimately compromise the Balance. He is an Observer (with a capital "O"!) and will not knowingly let out any information that will upset or affect the status quo. He also knows something else... if he were to make too much noise by influencing events, directly or indirectly, the Great Mother would take notice and do something about it. After all, he is not only living proof that she is NOT the beholder creator deity, but his knowledge could undermine all her power. How long would Bral stand if it were surrounded by hundreds of beholder hive ships? And how long would Luigi last when its citizens found out that all they wanted was a single tavern owner?

If a little knowledge is a dangerous thing, the knowledge of the multiverse is... well... potentially cataclysmic on a multiversal level.

Nobody knows it better then Large Luigi. He's not about to muck things up for a few paltry coins.

Denis, aka "the Big Picture" Maldin
Maldin's Greyhawk http://melkot.com
Loads of edition-independent Greyhawk goodness... maps, magic, mysteries, mechanics, and more! Including Spelljammer ship models.
Thanks for making this thread, but really it is going to be totally nuts if we have two threads for every improperly locked topic. These topics should not be locked. I'm going to see if I can find a thread where we can ask for the moderators to pull over the old thread and merge it with this one.

EDIT: I've been contacted by our VCL (Webster) and hopefully he will be getting this thread remerged with the original thread soon. Someone (probably Webster) has already unlocked the unmoved SJ threads and Webster is moving SJ threads over in batches of 5.

The Spire can only collect and store information witnessed by, or known to, beholders. It does not contain all knowledge of everything everywhere. If a beholder wasn't there, Large Luigi doesn't know it. Likewise, it does not store any future knowledge. When Large Luigi climbed the Spire, he acquired the knowledge download of what was known only up to that moment in time. I handle the question of "what does Large Luigi know?" by asking myself "is there ANY chance that a beholder(kin) may have observed this at some point in history?". I usually give him the benefit of the doubt.

I like this. It is logical. It fits in with the SJ concept that gods can not see into crystal spheres where their worshipers do not have an established church. Each beholder clan now becomes the beholder version of a clerical stronghold that lets the beholder gods gain access to that specific crystal sphere. And The Spire becomes a divine-level object that can take that knowledge and grant it to a beholder who is worthy enough.

I think you could even have "dark spheres" where there are not enough beholders for the information to get out. Krynnspace (which is dominated by its local gods and doesn't have beholder gods) would be a good sphere to make into a "dark sphere". You could easily rule that the DL gods block the process that puts beholder knowledge into The Spire and that Large Luigi only knows indirect information about Krynnspace. This "indirect information" would come from beholders who traveled into Krynnspace and then traveled on to another sphere where their memories of that "dark sphere" could get transmitted onward.

This also makes The Spire an artifact level object rather than a god level object. What The Spire does is focus in knowledge that comes in from somewhere else (and I would say the beholder god of knowledge). I would be inclined to create a new non-evil beholder god who had a portfolio that matched the ethos of The Spire and make them the observer of everything that all beholders see. (Now that beholder god of knowledge might be unknown, so I might even have them slumbering in the Astral Plane.)

One interesting side effect of your "snap shot" concept, is that an enlightened beholder (like Luigi) could return to The Spire to gain an "updated download" of knowledge. I'm not sure how many enlightened beholders would want to do that, but they would know if the traps on The Spire move over time, so the dangers of a return trip would be more predictable.

So how was Large Luigi affected? We know about the physical changes (regarding his eyes). To suddenly realize the true (lost) purpose of beholders really opened up his eyes (sorry about that, couldn't resist), and changed his philosophy. Now his purpose is to collect information. Not to sell information. He'll meter out a little information to chosen individuals whom he thinks will take that information and put it to a use that will enable them to collect information that they will report back to him. Essentially what he doles out will repay him in even more information (plus interest!) that he otherwise would not get. Sure, he may (or may not!) charge for the information, only because that makes the PCs value it so much more. Financial reward is not his game.

This is good. Luigi would also realise that his old life (including his place in his beholder clan) would conflict with his new purpose in life. I know that is "wisdom" rather than pure knowledge, but bear with me for a moment.

Lets wind back time and have another beholder find the knowledge of the universe. Lets say they go back to their clan and say: "I have the knowledge of the universe and our way of life is wrong". What is going to happen? In ninty nine times out of one hundred cases they are going to be blasted to bits by their clan members. There might be a few beholder clans who go with that "knowledge" and aspire to all ascend The Spire, but a one percent survival rate is probably on the generous side.

So when Luigi (or any other beholder) ascends The Spire and gains his knowledge, he is also going to see exactly what happened to every other beholder who gained knowledge from The Spire.

This is how you control the effect of Luigi on your campaign. He is NOT a font of all that is, was, or will be! In fact, for those in search of info, he's rather stingy with it... unless you've become his friend by action and by words. Even then, being True Neutral, there is no way he'll knowingly let out information that he thinks will ultimately compromise the Balance. He is an Observer (with a capital "O"!) and will not knowingly let out any information that will upset or affect the status quo. He also knows something else... if he were to make too much noise by influencing events, directly or indirectly, the Great Mother would take notice and do something about it. After all, he is not only living proof that she is NOT the beholder creator deity, but his knowledge could undermine all her power. How long would Bral stand if it were surrounded by hundreds of beholder hive ships? And how long would Luigi last when its citizens found out that all they wanted was a single tavern owner?

If a little knowledge is a dangerous thing, the knowledge of the multiverse is... well... potentially cataclysmic on a multiversal level.

Nobody knows it better then Large Luigi. He's not about to muck things up for a few paltry coins.

This I also like very much.

One interesting fact that Luigi will have is the knowledge of the location of every other beholder who has been up The Spire and still lives. And any beholders who get up the spire after Luigi will know exactly where he is.

I previously mentioned beholders killing the "enlightened-by-The-Spire" beholders, but it is also possible that one enlightened beholder might try to kill other enlightened beholders. If Luigi did things that were bad for the beholder race another enlightened beholder would know about it.

Since the 2008 forum changes I have spent more time on The Piazza than on Wizards of the Coast's forums. The Piazza's Campaign Settings area has since grown to cover more than 30 different campaign settings and its rules area (called The Crunchy Bits) has grown to cover 10 different RPG systems, including clone systems like Pathfinder and C&C and a free to download retro-clone built at The Piazza called Dark Dungeons.

Beyond the Moons: The official Spelljammer website Spelljammer Forum: The Piazza's forum dedicated to Spelljammer Spelljammer Wiki: The encyclopedia of Spelljammer

I finally got around to reading the Realmspace section on the Beholder world, Large Luigi and the Beholder-Seed Company. At which I noticed that I missed the spore growing beholders in my Lost Knowledge of the Spheres of Many Eyes. I need to update that at some point.

Anyway, the information is really disappointing to read. I wish they left a few lose ends. I disagree with your comment that the Great Mother is not the creator of the beholder. She could very well of created the beholders even if there are other gods.The Great Mother may have even been driven insane watching her warring children. Perhaps each beholder god had a beholder clan and the evil Great Mother taught her beholders to wipe out anyone different. As the other beholders were destroyed, the other beholder gods placed their knowledge in the spire in hopes that the mad followers of the Great Mother might return to them.

Identical Games

D&D Published World foums at The Piazza (Dark Sun, Mystara, Spelljammer, Planescape, and more); Core Coliseum; D&D Material including my Master/Expert DM Competition entries

I finally got around to reading the Realmspace section on the Beholder world, Large Luigi and the Beholder-Seed Company. At which I noticed that I missed the spore growing beholders in my Lost Knowledge of the Spheres of Many Eyes. I need to update that at some point.

I'll look forward to seeing that get finished. I think there is a similar thing for elves on BtM. Maybe you can get it uploaded, when you finish it. It would be nice for us to build up one page for every "major race". (Please don't forget to make sure there is a citation section, so people know where to look the original stuff up.)

Anyway, the information is really disappointing to read. I wish they left a few lose ends.

That is ironic, as I usually have the opposite disapointment and find it frustrating that AD&D stuff leaves too many loose ends that need to be expanded before you can use it.

I'm sure we could "invent" a few loose ends (especially if we invented a small pantheon of beholder gods that all had desires on The Spire).

The Spire was created by the original beholder gods, who may not even be around anymore (or at least are currently not actively influencing the beholder race in any apparent way). Their power lasts, however. The only current gods we know of, the Great Mother (who claims to be the creator deity, as many deities often do, although she clearly cannot be) and her immortal spawn Gzemnid, are definitely not responsible for the Spire and the revealed true purpose of the beholder race. In fact, she may even be responsible for the current destructive path that the race is on (or at the very least, is a product of that path), and likely doesn't even know about the beholder race's ancient true purpose.

I disagree with your comment that the Great Mother is not the creator of the beholder.

(It helps people follow the conversation, if you can quote something you are disagreeing with. I think the post you are disagreeing with was probably locked at the time. I've "added it back" above)

I'm not sure that I'm 100 percent either way with the Great Mother, as I can't find the original text right now,

However page 48 of SJR2 Realmspace is pretty clear at making it "other gods" that cursed the beholder race (when they found out its true purpose was to understand the universe). I read that as "non-beholder gods cursed the beholders". So I'd vote against Maldin here.

She could very well of created the beholders even if there are other gods. The Great Mother may have even been driven insane watching her warring children. Perhaps each beholder god had a beholder clan and the evil Great Mother taught her beholders to wipe out anyone different.

Hmm. I wouldn't give each beholder god a different clan. In my reading we are going to have one (or even more) clans per crystal sphere. So we would pretty much have an infinate number of implied mutated clans and need an infinate number of gods (even if we kill a lot of them off).

Page 48 of SJR2 Realmspace gives us this info:

...The purpose of their creation was to traverse the spheres, to gain information regarding everything. At the end of their searches, the hive mothers of the individual beholder species were to come together and share everything they found.
The gods designed the beholder in their own likeness to search the world over and report back to them on the status of the worlds they did not control. This mission, long ago distorted, is as forgotten as their original home sphere.
The eye of the deep was to search the lands beneath the seas to uncover their secrets as well. Unfortunately these beholders are just one more racist beholder species.
A few more knowledgeable persons in the Realms believe that the gods in the different spheres placed a curse on the beholders once they found out their purpose. These deities, fearing the beholder's gods, placed the beholders into a hateful race for supremacy against their own kind...

The beholders were created in the image of the gods - that is clearly stated and unless it is disputed elsewhere, I think we should go with it. Now, this isn't totally clear, but it does name two beholder subtypes ("hive mother" and "eye of the deep"), so I would personally prefer to go with subtypes (which are finite) rather than clans (which I infer as unlimited) as the form of the beholder gods.

The Great Mother and "hive mother" both contain the word "mother", so I would infer that she was the model that the hive mothers were based on. Now if every hiver mother is different, then they would all look slightly different to The Great Mother. Maybe that curse makes the hive mothers reject The Great Mother (and cuts her off from her power source/worshipers) - who knows.

If we have 30 or 40 beholder subtypes, I would prefer to use them all as beholderkin created from the forms of 30 or 40 lesser beholder gods. So the "eye of the deep" would need a beholder god of the deep. Some beholderkin might be similar enough that we could declare one type to be a mutant form of the other type (to cut down the number of gods).

Some beholderkin still hang around together (mostly the SJ types), so I would argue that those beholder gods are still on good terms. (Although another way to do it would be to have The Great Mother eat 6 or 7 other beholder gods and "take over" control of their worshipers.)

Other beholderkin (like the eye of the deep) seem to be loners, so we could make their gods isolated from the rest of the pantheon.

Some beholderkin seem to be unique to specific campaign settings, so like Eilistraee (of the FR Drow Pantheon) they could be the inspiration for minor beholder gods who are not known in most crystal spheres. (Did these beholderkin die out elsewhere, or were they originally mutants that changed so much that they turned one of their own kind into a new beholder demigod.)

As the other beholders were destroyed, the other beholder gods placed their knowledge in the spire in hopes that the mad followers of the Great Mother might return to them.

You know, from the original write up, if the beholders were supposed to gather the knowledge of the universe and then the hive mothers were supposed to share that knowledge with each other, it seems that The Spire is an attempt to "reboot" the beholders and get them back onto their original plan.

Hive mothers appear to be the beholder-leaders, so maybe The Spire was supposed to be aimed at them.

In any case, we know that The Spire is not in the original beholder sphere, so any of the minor beholder gods could have created it. It could even be a giant temple created by a mortal beholder cleric in times long gone.

Since the 2008 forum changes I have spent more time on The Piazza than on Wizards of the Coast's forums. The Piazza's Campaign Settings area has since grown to cover more than 30 different campaign settings and its rules area (called The Crunchy Bits) has grown to cover 10 different RPG systems, including clone systems like Pathfinder and C&C and a free to download retro-clone built at The Piazza called Dark Dungeons.

Beyond the Moons: The official Spelljammer website Spelljammer Forum: The Piazza's forum dedicated to Spelljammer Spelljammer Wiki: The encyclopedia of Spelljammer

I'll look forward to seeing that get finished. I think there is a similar thing for elves on BtM. Maybe you can get it uploaded, when you finish it. It would be nice for us to build up one page for every "major race". (Please don't forget to make sure there is a citation section, so people know where to look the original stuff up.)

The Lost Knowledge of the Spheres of Many Eyes includes notes on where I found everything. It was designed as my "eratta" to I, Tyrant that shows all the inconsistencies with earlier material. Plus it contains some additional material that I had thought up.

I'm sure we could "invent" a few loose ends (especially if we invented a small pantheon of beholder gods that all had desires on The Spire).

That's what my Lost Knowledge document does. I created two legends the truth of which is up to the DM. I suggest that there might be multiple Great Mothers and people don't realize that they are different beings.

Hmm. I wouldn't give each beholder god a different clan. In my reading we are going to have one (or even more) clans per crystal sphere. So we would pretty much have an infinate number of implied mutated clans and need an infinate number of gods (even if we kill a lot of them off).

What I was thinking is that each beholder god created a clan that is their perfect form. They would all be standard beholders just different color, joints in eyestalks, or whatever. Then the chaotic Great Mother comes around and introduces hundreds of variations. All believing they are the perfect form. They other beholders might try to reason with the Great Mother children but war breaks out. (Or maybe they succeeded and forced the Great Mother's children from the crystal sphere. The spire is left to reach out to the lost beholders. Hmm... but if that is true why would Luigi go back to the sane beholder sphere.)

Beholder-kin are mostly specialized soldiers. Only some can reproduce. The beholders don't necessarily want them but they are sometimes needed.

The Great Mother and "hive mother" both contain the word "mother", so I would infer that she was the model that the hive mothers were based on. Now if every hiver mother is different, then they would all look slightly different to The Great Mother. Maybe that curse makes the hive mothers reject The Great Mother (and cuts her off from her power source/worshipers) - who knows.

I Tyrant mentions that they are called Great Mother and Hive Mother because they were encountered by a matriarchal elven society. Kawahak kru, the beholder name for hive mother, translates to "spawner-boss." The Great Mother is very different from beholders. It is chaotic not lawful. It babbles incomprehensibly. Beholders that actually see the Great Mother are shocked and sometimes lose faith.

Identical Games

D&D Published World foums at The Piazza (Dark Sun, Mystara, Spelljammer, Planescape, and more); Core Coliseum; D&D Material including my Master/Expert DM Competition entries

The Lost Knowledge of the Spheres of Many Eyes includes notes on where I found everything. It was designed as my "eratta" to I, Tyrant that shows all the inconsistencies with earlier material. Plus it contains some additional material that I had thought up.

Your notes may be very useful when I get around to creating the wiki article for beholders. That (by policy) is going to be limited to canon facts and known errors.

That's what my Lost Knowledge document does. I created two legends the truth of which is up to the DM. I suggest that there might be multiple Great Mothers and people don't realize that they are different beings.

Beyond the Moons definately needs stuff like this for every major SJ race (and probably for every minor race). We need to get back to getting new content on the site.

I also think that the 3rd edition conversion needs a GM's netbook that describes each of the major races (even if it doesn't give D&D stats). If you have a comprehensive list of beholders from various campaign settings, that would allow a GM to decide how spacefaring beholders and groundling beholders are similar and different.

What I was thinking is that each beholder god created a clan that is their perfect form. They would all be standard beholders just different color, joints in eyestalks, or whatever. Then the chaotic Great Mother comes around and introduces hundreds of variations. All believing they are the perfect form. They other beholders might try to reason with the Great Mother children but war breaks out. (Or maybe they succeeded and forced the Great Mother's children from the crystal sphere. The spire is left to reach out to the lost beholders. Hmm... but if that is true why would Luigi go back to the sane beholder sphere.)

I thought that canon already estabilished that other gods turned the beholders against themselved.

But that aside, if I read you correctly, you are saying that we could start time with say 12 beholder gods and 12 beholder clans. And that every other clan was a mutated clan that decended from one of the original clans.

I suppose that part of the xenophobia is not wanting to admit that you are a mutant and a similar beholder is actually an unmutated beholder. I can see how that might cause paranoid creatures to all claim to be the original race. But if there were 12 clans, I would expect beholders to only be xenophobic to mutants who share their own bloodline. I would expect some co-operation between a mutant decended from clan A and a mutant decended from clan B.

I'm not saying your idea is a bad one - I actually like it. But I think you need to adress this point and find a way to make even the original clans xenophobic to each other.

Beholder-kin are mostly specialized soldiers. Only some can reproduce. The beholders don't necessarily want them but they are sometimes needed.

Beholder-kin are a bit of a "red herring", because they sometimes seem to be mutants, themselves. Certainly the Eye of the Deep, seems to be on an equal level with the "common" beholder.

The Hive Mother seems to be the same creature as a "common" beholder, but just transformed in some way. Bees have worker bees, soldier bees and queens, so I think that we need a mechanic that gives a clan a variety of beholder-kin (on demand).

Now if clans can mutate, then it is possible that certain clans could evolve to create unique beholder-kin that are unknown elsewhere. So that sort of hand waving could cover up (from a SJ point of view) beholder-kin that are only found in one non-SJ campaign setting.

And another option would be to make lone beholder-like monsters get formed when common beholders (or other types of beholders) catch some sort of beholder disease.

The Astereater, for example, could easily be a Hive Mother that bloats up beyond normal size and grows uncontrollably.

I Tyrant mentions that they are called Great Mother and Hive Mother because they were encountered by a matriarchal elven society. Kawahak kru, the beholder name for hive mother, translates to "spawner-boss." The Great Mother is very different from beholders. It is chaotic not lawful. It babbles incomprehensibly. Beholders that actually see the Great Mother are shocked and sometimes lose faith.

Hmm. Kawahak kru sounds like a reboot to me, but I'll take it onboard.

Beholders are sexless, so a spawner-boss that can create common beholders (and maybe orbus and beholder-kin) would be a logical reason for beholders to obey Hive Mothers.

Of course we would need a process to create new Hive Mothers. Maybe common beholders could eventually bloat up and grow until their bodies expand along their eyestalks and their eyes become immobile eyes on the surface of a Hive Mother.

Maybe there needs to be a beholder "Royal Jelly" that turns common beholders into Hive Mothers, or some other process that sets them off. Maybe when a Hive Mother dies, her "children" all grow up and each one becomes a new Hive Mother with a new clan.

I don't know exactly what we need, but we need something.

People can get around the concept of elves (which are basically immortal humans with pointed ears) and they can get around the concept of elf subraces. Elves have two sexes and are basically the same size as humans. We understand humans (as we are humans) so all of that stuff is already understood by us.

But the beholders are not very well documented and I don't think most people can tell the difference between a beholder subrace, a beholder clan and a beholder-kin. I think we need some sort of beholder biology class.

Since the 2008 forum changes I have spent more time on The Piazza than on Wizards of the Coast's forums. The Piazza's Campaign Settings area has since grown to cover more than 30 different campaign settings and its rules area (called The Crunchy Bits) has grown to cover 10 different RPG systems, including clone systems like Pathfinder and C&C and a free to download retro-clone built at The Piazza called Dark Dungeons.

Beyond the Moons: The official Spelljammer website Spelljammer Forum: The Piazza's forum dedicated to Spelljammer Spelljammer Wiki: The encyclopedia of Spelljammer

I thought that canon already estabilished that other gods turned the beholders against themselved.

Assuming you accept that cannon, it doesn't say how they accomplished it. Perhaps the Great Mother was LN and they caused her to go mad change to CE.

I would expect some co-operation between a mutant decended from clan A and a mutant decended from clan B.

After several years apart a beholder from clan A meets up with another member. The second member has grown up on a cold world. The beholders adapted by growing a layer of fur to keep warm. The two beholders are horrified upon seeing each other. Both thinks the other is a horrible perversion of the true image.

Beholder-kin are a bit of a "red herring", because they sometimes seem to be mutants, themselves. Certainly the Eye of the Deep, seems to be on an equal level with the "common" beholder.

The I, Tyrant book separates them into three groups. True beholders includes the Standard Beholder, the Beholder Mage, the Hive Mother, and Beholder Priestess. Beholder-kin are beholders that can reproduce and are close enough to beholders that they would like to wipe them out but the Hive Mothers won't let them. That groups includes Eye of the Deep, Spectator, Death Kiss, Gauth, and Observer. The last group are the abominations. They are specialized soldier breeds that cannot reproduce.

Personally I disliked counting the Beholder Mage as a True Beholder. Wildspace describes them a solitary and usually outcasts from the beholders but the I, Tyrant changed that description. I don't see why the beholders would accept a beholder that puts out his central eye to learn magic. They should be looked at with horror. How could they desecrate the true form like that.

The Hive Mothers are described as creating the abominations. I've generally thought that the Hive Mothers have the ability to manipulate their offspring before birth. They tailor their powers when needed. Sometimes mutants are born from regular beholders but they are usually just killed.

The Astereater, for example, could easily be a Hive Mother that bloats up beyond normal size and grows uncontrollably.

The astereater seems like a failed beholder-kin. The hive mother was trying to create a beholder that could survive indefinitely in space. Camouflaged in asteroids. Unfortunately the creature was dumb and failed to have the innate magic of other beholders. Since it was deployed in space, it was far enough removed that it didn't consider itself part of the beholder hive.

Of course we would need a process to create new Hive Mothers. Maybe common beholders could eventually bloat up and grow until their bodies expand along their eyestalks and their eyes become immobile eyes on the surface of a Hive Mother.

The I, Tyrant book says that scholars are unsure of what determines the breeds hatched from the Great Mothers eggs but some suggest diet determine it. A similar sort of thing could occur with Hive Mothers. They eat lots of seafood to create Eyes of the Deep.

But the beholders are not very well documented and I don't think most people can tell the difference between a beholder subrace, a beholder clan and a beholder-kin. I think we need some sort of beholder biology class.

Actually I think they are pretty well documented. It just all conflicts with one another. Which is why I generally consider beholders to be an unstable race. They mutate constantly due to the magical energies contained within them. The stories of different forms of reproduction are all true. Some are egg layers, some are live births, and some are grown from spores.

Identical Games

D&D Published World foums at The Piazza (Dark Sun, Mystara, Spelljammer, Planescape, and more); Core Coliseum; D&D Material including my Master/Expert DM Competition entries

Large Luigi has broken through the "4TH WALL". Ao does not know that he is a fictional construct used to inspire a story line and strip magic users from shooting 17 magic missiles or roasting red dragons with 35HD Fireballs!

Quick flashback: The Marvel Comic "Deadpool kills the Marvel Universe" was horribly written but early on established Deadpool wounding a Watcher, and asking him to whom he was addressing his conversation, to which the Watcher pointed at THE PERSON READING THE COMIC BOOK! Long story short(ened), even though Deadpool couldn't beat hardly any of the others in the series, it was his job to do (The title of the series) and went from page to page killing the Hulk, Spiderman, Thor, A Watcher, and probably Galactis, Death, Beyonder, the three headed Class 5000 Triumverate or whatever his name was (while killing Thanos wearing the infinity gauntlet, a yellow and green lantern power ring while hitting him with a cosmic cube!)

Large Luigi is NOT the beginnings of a new religion of beholders. The mission is LOST FOREVER! Why do I say this? Because Luigi is not jaunting off to learn anything OR having neat little beholder-language scrolls slipped to other beholders with instructions or even hints about the spire. He is a PERMANENT DM tool for sending characters on quests with incentive (money?/info?) to come back and get their next mission.

The gods' curse ended the search for knowledge for the beholder race.

A truly knowledge-based species of information gatherers CANNOT be Lawful Neutral. Luigi would be traveling the spheres as a TRUE NEUTRAL ball of duty if the spire did any of the things assumed by your suppositions above.

SOMETIMES you can use the description provided by the writers LITERALLY. This Tyrant Orb is the equivalent of "Dungeon Master" from the Dungeons and Dragons cartoon. He has pierced the 4th wall to become a new-flavored oracle, and nothing more.
------------------
Now--if you want to go off the grid and make suppositions, here's one for you! WHAT IF...
...The gods' PUNISHED the beholders by GIVING THEM WHAT THEY WANTED?!!! That's right, every god from every pantheon simultaneously cast a GOD WISH that all the universe's knowledge filled every little bugger's head to capacity!!!!

The Great Mother absorbed this horror from her people and went ape**** insane!

This spar was prepared long ago to contain the gentle trickling of information that would come in, and that poor gigantic beastie god vomited up the hell running through her head (filling the spire with ALL KNOWLEDGE, piercing the 4th wall et. al.)! Her children reflected their goddess in a warped way, where her mind went full-on chaotic, theirs went full-on Lawful. Insanity leads to evil, and THAT she gave to her children perfectly!

Mutating beholder? The creator of the beholder species went CHAOTIC EVIL INSANE! Her children will mutate indefinitely (unless!!!) her son's plague can strip the species back down to a level of "sameness" that allows them to revert to their ORIGINAL ALIGNMENT; TRUE NEUTRAL!!!

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Okay, so bottom line, Atreyu just heard Bastian read out the entire contents of the "Neverending Story" and discovered he's just a character playing a bit part (Anyone read Greyhawk Dungeons, the level with the hack writing the adventure as the characters walk into the room?) and knows how the story ends.

That story arc just flew out of my head and had to get it out before my brain numbed up. At least consider mine since it allows the Cannon to work AND fits in well to explain 1) mutations, 2) cannon, 3) the race war, 4) opposing alignments, 5) the beholder plague.

But please, if nothing else, remember that when Large Luigi talks, its the dungeon master reading the introduction to a module to the players, not a cast-member playing his role (the cast members think they exist, Luigi KNOWS he doesn't!)
Sorry, brain running very fast tonight. Seeing as the post previous to mine was like 2008 I'm sure no one will ever actually read what I'm putting here, but I have ONE MORE simile to try on you...
...Rod Serling.

At the start of every Twilight Zone episode, Rod Serling speaks to the viewing audience concerning "tonight's episode." This is a good example because he doesn't say, "Peter Smith, played by Vic Morrow, will be in a horror story involving a toy robot that our special effects guys really gussied up!" Rod Serling tells us about a monster that doesn't look like a monster. A little boy who does bad things without conscious. Although Rod Serling is not a cast member of the episode in question, he "PLAYS ALONG" with the characters in the episode that think they are real people, real characters. Burgess Meredith didn't drop his glasses, Henry Bemis did. And so ended the episode, "Time At Last".

OR, maybe think of Large Luigi as the OPPOSITE of "The Truman Show." Instead of one person living obliviously in a fantasy world surrounded by actors, Luigi is the only actor living in a fantasy world surrounded by an oblivious everyone else! Except he realizes that he ISN'T LIVING, that in fact he's as much a construct as those around him.

Please don't make me go into first person, 3rd person, piercing the 4th wall, or, horror of horrors, what happens next (if THAT happens please don't tell me!!!).

I promise the meds are wearing me out, so I'll end my pedantic extrapolations now. Just remember, when Gandolf is narrating the story of the Hobbit, he cannot stop in the midst of his dissertation to throttle Boromir for what happened during that part of the story. Both because Boromir is dead, the incident occurred at a different time, and no actual person named Gandolf existed to help a hobbit's nephew save Middle Earth.
Sorry, brain running very fast tonight. Seeing as the post previous to mine was like 2008 I'm sure no one will ever actually read what I'm putting here, but I have ONE MORE simile to try on you...



Well I've read your posts now, but it is almost a year later, so I'm not sure if you will read this.

These forums are fairly inactive now. Just over five years back some ex-forum staff at WotC chased all the Spelljammer fans away and then went to another forum, called The Piazza. Those forum staff got removed, and the Spelljammer forum got put back, but most of the Spelljammer fans have stayed over at the Spelljammer forum at The Piazza.

Since the 2008 forum changes I have spent more time on The Piazza than on Wizards of the Coast's forums. The Piazza's Campaign Settings area has since grown to cover more than 30 different campaign settings and its rules area (called The Crunchy Bits) has grown to cover 10 different RPG systems, including clone systems like Pathfinder and C&C and a free to download retro-clone built at The Piazza called Dark Dungeons.

Beyond the Moons: The official Spelljammer website Spelljammer Forum: The Piazza's forum dedicated to Spelljammer Spelljammer Wiki: The encyclopedia of Spelljammer