Castle Zagyg
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Post Posted: Wed Jun 28, 2006 10:01 pm 
 

Mark, this may take a little while :D

MShipley88 wrote:Can anyone explain to me the relationship between:

Castle Zagyg
Greyhawk Castle
Ruins of Greyhawk
Mauve Castle


OK, here we go:

The original Castle Greyhawk has never been published, unless the single dungeon level that appears in Hall of Many Panes is, in fact, from Greyhawk Castle; I'm beginning to think that it may not be, since it's relatively simple in design; then again, if it is, it would be among the first created, so it might be simpler....  TSR did publish the WG7 and WGR1 modules, neither of which is based on the original Castle Greyhawk, although the authors of WGR1 did in fact draw on some of the original campaign participants' memories in creating that version.  There's a thread over on the WotC boards @ http://boards1.wizards.com/showthread.php?t=572355 that sheds a little more insight into WGR1's authenticity.

Back to the original castle:  it had at least two incarnations, perhaps three:  

  1. the original Castle EGG designed (about 13-ish levels deep IIRC)
  2. an expanded version of the Castle, after Gary realized that the original design would need to be revised in order to accomodate the number of adventurers descending into the ruin
  3. a further expanded version of the Castle, in which Gary and Rob merged their dungeon levels to form the final, largest version of Greyhawk Castle (note:  this may in fact be the same version as #2)

Maure (not Mauve) Castle is another beast entirely.  It's inspired by the old school origins of the Greyhawk and El Raja Key castles, but Rob has been creating those levels fresh for dungeon:  in other words, they're new "old school" levels, and don't date back to the origins of the game.  The El Raja Key levels, on the other hand (which David/faro/harami won in the last auction), are the third-oldest dungeon in the game's history, and several of the levels from that castle were merged into the expanded Castle Greyhawk when Gary and Rob rebuilt the castle when Rob became co-DM.  The El Raja Key castle levels relate back to the WG5 Mordenkainen's Fantastic Adventure levels, but I'm still not sure exactly how:  I think that the WG5 levels are sub-levels near the Maure Castle levels, but weren't originally connected to that dungeon (which was an placeholder for El Raja Key), other than by proximity.  I haven't tried to clarify that with Rob in recent memory, though.  Rob's still publishing Maure Castle levels (newest to appear in Dungeon 139, in another month or two).  

MShipley88 wrote:Is there more than one version of Greyhawk Castle?


Yes, based on the fact that the original, as well as the various published versions, have all existed.  In addition to the above versions, EGG and RJK were going to publish a version of Castle Greyhawk via New Inifinities (per the Realms of Adventure newsletter).  That brings us up to date to CZ:

MShipley88 wrote:Is Zagyg a rewrite of Greyhawk?


Yes, and no.  Gary and Rob are having all-new maps drawn, and the various CZ books will detail the castle based on the original notes of the levels.  They will not replicate the original materials, but are instead inspired by them, and updating them for a more contemporary audience (for example, most gaming groups don't have 10-15 players participating in most adventuring sessions, as the various original dungeons did).  

MShipley88 wrote:Are these related products?


Yes, but they're no closer than cousins (the original Castle and CZ), whereas WGR1 is more like a step-cousin, and the WG7 is an exiled black sheep ;)  Maure Castle is probably as close in spirit to the original flavor of the dungeon levels as we're going to see, until Castle Zagyg hits the market.

MShipley88 wrote:I have read a lot on Grodog's website.  There seems to be no extant manuscript of Greyhawk Castle.  Right?


Per my most recent chat with Rob, the only complete manuscript of Castle Greyhawk that exists is the one that is in Gary's binder.


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Post Posted: Thu Jun 29, 2006 7:25 pm 
 

PHOTOCOPY THAT BINDER!

Alas...another original manuscript soon about to disappear into a private collection.

Wouldn't the original manuscript keep its value if some copies were made?


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Post Posted: Thu Jun 29, 2006 7:53 pm 
 

From grodog's Greyhawk website:

El Raja Key, 1972

Unpublished. This castle was intentionally designed to provide Gary with a source of adventuring enjoyment but quickly expanded in scope when EGG chose me to help co-DM the original Greyhawk campaign. Some of its levels were incorporated into the second (large and current) version of Greyhawk Castle, and many of its tricks, traps, monsters and magic appear in sundry published releases (Greyhawk: Supplement 1 to D&D; DMG; UA; WG5; et al). Ostensibly the castle was located at a geographical area equating to the current Maure Castle location on the WoG map; WG5 (see below) was a nearby area related to Maure Castle/El Raja Key in some way which was only slightly hinted at (though the idea of entering Maure Castle equated with entering El Raja Key, which was less a name then than a signature denoting my castle, since my real initials occur within it).


So, there is a connection between Castle Greyhawk and Maure Castle:  El Raja to Greyhawk to Maure...or something like that.   I wonder how much of the Dungeon magazine Maure is lifted directly from El Raja...?    *RJK...are you reading this?*

Mark   8)


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Post Posted: Thu Jun 29, 2006 10:50 pm 
 

MShipley88 wrote:So, there is a connection between Castle Greyhawk and Maure Castle:  El Raja to Greyhawk to Maure...or something like that.   I wonder how much of the Dungeon magazine Maure is lifted directly from El Raja...?    *RJK...are you reading this?*


I asked Rob that recently, over on his boards, and he said that he was creating the levels for Dungeon fresh:  while I think that they maycontain some elements from his old adventures, from what I understand they're not the same as the El Raja Key levels.


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Post Posted: Fri Jun 30, 2006 4:52 am 
 

I purchased Castle Zagyg Vol. 1 & 2 with the Hall of Many Panes from the Troll Lords during their sale but it looks like you need to hit e-bay for those dungeon mags.  The Troll Lords were really cool about taking my order after my own confusion with the sale duration.

Grodog,
Dark Chateau is also related in this a little bit as well is it not?  The DC is obviously not part of the dungeon but the surrounding area?

  


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Post Posted: Fri Jun 30, 2006 8:06 am 
 

Yes, but like MC, DC was created freshly:  it doesn't date from the old days either.  Which doesn't really matter, since it's a great adventure! :D


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Post Posted: Fri Jun 30, 2006 11:33 am 
 

Cimmerian wrote:I purchased Castle Zagyg Vol. 1 & 2 with the Hall of Many Panes from the Troll Lords during their sale but it looks like you need to hit e-bay for those dungeon mags.  The Troll Lords were really cool about taking my order after my own confusion with the sale duration.

Grodog,
Dark Chateau is also related in this a little bit as well is it not?  The DC is obviously not part of the dungeon but the surrounding area?
\

Vol. 1 and 2?  Didn't they just tell me that volume 2 is not out yet?


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Post Posted: Fri Jun 30, 2006 11:42 am 
 

DC is not Vol 2..yeah confusing, but the real Vol II is The Abandoned Fortress http://www.trolllord.com/newsite/zagyg/8051.html

http://www.trolllord.com/newsite/zagyg/index.html
They have DC as an adventure, but I'd assume thats what the other Volumes are also.

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Post Posted: Fri Jun 30, 2006 12:49 pm 
 

MShipley88 wrote:PHOTOCOPY THAT BINDER!

Alas...another original manuscript soon about to disappear into a private collection.

Wouldn't the original manuscript keep its value if some copies were made?

Photocopy it anyway, and store the copie(s) in a vault somewhere far from the originals, in case something should happen.  That's just smart, and if Gary's the author of the material even legal. ;)

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Post Posted: Fri Jun 30, 2006 1:05 pm 
 

They told me that Volume 2 is not available yet....a bit dismayed to see that the total project is umpteen million hardback books long.

They'll never sustain it that long, and the price is too high.

Mark   8)


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Post Posted: Fri Jun 30, 2006 1:12 pm 
 

Good luck trying to get it (CG) photocopied!! Gary doesn't let it wander to far from his side. I remember taking a peek at the binder (sitting at his right side) a couple of years ago while he was DMing - purely for getting a look at the original, not for cheating purposes  :) . It has many levels and the maps are quite large with many twists and turns - even if one was trying to sneak peeks to try and cheat - wouldn't do any good!!

Grodog - I don't think the map he used for the Dungeon Crawl pane was from the CG. The only reason I think this is that when we were going thru the Hall of Many Panes (playtest), Gary never mentioned or said that it was. I just remember it being a bear to map - mostly because of his famous teleporters (damn things). Definitely in the vein of his wonderful maps that go every which way!  8O


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Post Posted: Fri Jun 30, 2006 1:12 pm 
 

$40 for Yggsburgh and $20 for each of the other six books?  

Lemme' see.....40+20...um...carry the two....+20 more....multiply by...no...make that...the square root of.......

Equals...a lot of money!

And the time involved...this is how fantasy projects become lost might-have-beens.

I paid $10 for Yggsburgh....did not notice any time limit and they did not point one out....

Even at $10 each (not mentioning postage) that is...like...$70 for the project.  And there is no guarantee that there'll be a deal on the other six volumes.  

The World's Largest Dungeon (which is a novelty piece and a nice mine of great ideas as well an interesting read...but would anybody use it?) is the only project I know of that is comparable.

Mark   8)


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Post Posted: Fri Jun 30, 2006 1:17 pm 
 

Deogolf wrote:Good luck trying to get it (CG) photocopied!! Gary doesn't let it wander to far from his side. I remember taking a peek at the binder (sitting at his right side) a couple of years ago while he was DMing - purely for getting a look at the original, not for cheating purposes  :) . It has many levels and the maps are quite large with many twists and turns - even if one was trying to sneak peeks to try and cheat - wouldn't do any good!!

Grodog - I don't think the map he used for the Dungeon Crawl pane was from the CG. The only reason I think this is that when we were going thru the Hall of Many Panes (playtest), Gary never mentioned or said that it was. I just remember it being a bear to map - mostly because of his famous teleporters (damn things). Definitely in the vein of his wonderful maps that go every which way!  8O


Did he catch you peeking, and was there a unique punishment for that...like having your hands slapped by a beholder's eyestalk, or bludgeoning by a catoblepus tail?

Even a lovingly and carefully preserved amateur project like Castle Greyhawk would be considerably stressed after 30 years of gaming.  The old maps cannot be in great condition unless they have done nothing other than reside in a file drawer in a dry room.

Gary must be aware of the historic nature of this project.  Surely he has made other copies....right?

Mark   8)


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Post Posted: Fri Jun 30, 2006 3:22 pm 
 

MShipley88 wrote:
Deogolf wrote:Good luck trying to get it (CG) photocopied!! Gary doesn't let it wander to far from his side. I remember taking a peek at the binder (sitting at his right side) a couple of years ago while he was DMing - purely for getting a look at the original, not for cheating purposes  :) . It has many levels and the maps are quite large with many twists and turns - even if one was trying to sneak peeks to try and cheat - wouldn't do any good!!

Grodog - I don't think the map he used for the Dungeon Crawl pane was from the CG. The only reason I think this is that when we were going thru the Hall of Many Panes (playtest), Gary never mentioned or said that it was. I just remember it being a bear to map - mostly because of his famous teleporters (damn things). Definitely in the vein of his wonderful maps that go every which way!  8O


Did he catch you peeking, and was there a unique punishment for that...like having your hands slapped by a beholder's eyestalk, or bludgeoning by a catoblepus tail?

Even a lovingly and carefully preserved amateur project like Castle Greyhawk would be considerably stressed after 30 years of gaming.  The old maps cannot be in great condition unless they have done nothing other than reside in a file drawer in a dry room.

Gary must be aware of the historic nature of this project.  Surely he has made other copies....right?

Mark   8)


No, he didn't.   :D  In fact, he did give us a look at the first level after we were pretty much done investigating it.  It was just neat to see one of the oldest "living" D&D dungeon crawls in existence. He had everything placed in plastic sheets - maps, room write-ups, and whatever else he had in there. The room write ups were written so small that he had to use a magnifying glass to read some of it. I have no idea whether he has made copies or not. My guess is probably not, but ya never know!

I did do some journal write-ups/entries that are on the Dragonsfoot site. Not exactly sure where they are located now though!  :?

We were able to investigate a good portion of the first three levels and one of the side levels that was responsible for Erac's demise! Our party was able to locate Erac's remains and find the way out. Unfortunately, soon after, Gary had his health problems and we never got back to it! :(

Maybe we can talk him into it again now that he's feeling better.


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Post Posted: Fri Jun 30, 2006 5:15 pm 
 

Gygax is feeling better?  Last I heard his health was very bad...real bad.   Has his prognosis improved?


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Post Posted: Sat Jul 01, 2006 12:04 am 
 

MShipley88 wrote:Gygax is feeling better?  Last I heard his health was very bad...real bad.   Has his prognosis improved?


Well, relatively speaking. He's not great, but he's better than he was awhile back. He seemed upbeat and in good spirits at the convention in Lake Geneva.  I think he's taken to his "semi-retirement" quite well. Hasn't stopped him from gaming (board games, rpgs, etc.).


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Post Posted: Sat Jul 01, 2006 2:37 pm 
 

How much of the Castle Zagyg project is Gary Gygax's work?


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Post Posted: Mon Jul 03, 2006 12:18 pm 
 

Deogolf wrote:We were able to investigate a good portion of the first three levels and one of the side levels that was responsible for Erac's demise! Our party was able to locate Erac's remains and find the way out. Unfortunately, soon after, Gary had his health problems and we never got back to it! :


Was that Erac or Erac's Cousin?


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