Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Leomund And Named Magic User Spells

Unlike Larodrm the Leaper, Leomund is well-known for his magic user spells.  Two of Leomund's more useful non-combat spells appear in the 1st edition ADnD Players Handbook published in 1978:  Leomund's Tiny Hut and Leomund's Secret Chest.

The above illustration, by David Trampier, accompanies that later spell.

It's intriguing to consider the number of spells appearing in the Players Handbook, named after one of the magic user characters participating in the earliest Dungeons and Dragons campaigns.  Tenser, Nystul, Leomund, Rary, Bigby, Mordenkainen, Otiluke, Drawmij, Serten, Sustarre and Otto all have spells appearing in the Players Handbook. 

What is more telling is that there is not a single Illusionist spell named after its creator.  It could be argued that unlike Magic Users, the Illusionist class was not an organic ougrowth of actual game-play, thus explaining the lack of character named spells.

At any rate, Larodrm has a long way to go to have any of his spells recognized in a treatise on famous spell-casters and their invented spells.


Telecanter said...

Oh man, if it weren't clear by my blog name this feature of D&D really sold me. It made it feel "real" like the spells you were learning came from actual mages.

(it probably appeals so much to me because I wouldn't have thought to do it; if I had designed D&D's spells I'm sure they would have been more universal, generic, and . . . bland)

The end game for me was always to reach a level that I could make my own named spell but I never quite reached it.

Aaron E. Steele said...

I was late to the game when it came to reading Vance. Reading his stuff gave me a greater appreciation for DnD's named spells.

Black Vulmea said...

Telecanter: "The end game for me was always to reach a level that I could make my own named spell . . ."

Same here.

Trey said...

I really liked the named spells, too, and the since of history it provides. I think any good setting book maybe out to give little sidebar biographies of mages who have spells named after then (and rename the spells to fit the world).

Aaron E. Steele said...

Great stuff, Trey. I love anything that contributes to implied setting.