Blue and Green Age play ideas

So, I was looking around at some of the background story material, and I started wondering about what it would be like to play in the Blue or Green Ages. For example, there are references to advanced psionic transportation in the green age, which seemed to be more advanced than the psionics used by the Mind Lords of Saragar. Also, one comment I encountered (I forget from where) implied that the King’s Star was actually a Rhistuli life-shaped satellite or space station of some sort. Assuming this is the case, would it be correct to assume that the Rhistuli had achieved interplanetary travel?

So, would anyone have any ideas for how to apply this? Mechanically, I could see some sort of combination of a obsidian engine and a guardian orb producing a primitive flying machine. And it’s conceivable to use the rules in the life-shaping handbook to do the same thing. My question is, what would the world look like with such applications? And how would I run a campaign like this without loosing the general feeling of the Dark Sun game?


First off, if you’re looking to do Dark Sun w/ spaceships, i’d take a look at this: Even if you don’t care for every part of it (i know i don’t), it ought to get the ideas flowing.

I’d say that anything you can imagine doing with magic, you can do with psionics or Life-Shaping.

For Green & Blue age ideas, you should look at Windriders of the Jagged Cliffs and the DS3 Life-Shaping Handbook for ideas on Rhulisti culture, and the DS3 Rules, Chapter 11 - Other Ages of Play for both Green & Blue age ideas.

Aside from that, i’ve got some ideas on the subject.

Blue Age: The DS3 Rules says that Bards would make the best Life Shapers, and that Life Shapers were the elite upper class of Rhulisti society. Think about that for a second……bards are mostly assassins in the current age of Athas. I’d imagine this would make upper society very contentious, with the Life Shapers possibly fighting amongst themselves much like Templars do in the current age. Not necessarily murdering each other, but certainly using intrigue as a means to advance one’s social position.
The Rhulisti were the only intelligent race in the early to mid Blue age, but that might get boring to play. Why not create sub-races based on the different halfling types from other campaign settings (Forgotten Realms, for instance), just so that not every character is mechanically the same.

On the same token, the DS3 Rules state that the Blue Age Kreen were not an “intelligent” species. But most things described in Dark Sun are from a “in-character view”. What if you treated Blue Age Kreen like orcs from other settings, barely intelligent, but capable of being a PC race nonetheless (winged, 4-armed, 4-8x halfling sized)? Or maybe just use Trin stats and give them wings…

Green Age: I’d say the Green Age should be much like other fantasy DnD settings, mostly. But, keep in mind, the leaders at the time thought it was reasonable to create undead guardians within their own cities to maintain adherence to law and social customs (Meorty) and to permanently enslave the minds of criminals to do psionically assisted manual labor. I submit that perhaps this slavery mindset has always existed on Athas, and that it has only grown more brutal as the world grew more hostile. So, perhaps outright slavery wasn’t a common thing in the Green Age, but perhaps there was a general trend of “dehumanization” (or demi-human, or humanoid) in all Dark Sun time periods. I’d say a person could cling to this trope and maintain some semblance of “True Dark Sun” even in the green age, with elves fighting orcs in forests.

Hope some of that helps.


That’s a fantastic point about Green-age slavery.

The Green-age difference from “standard” D&D fare is that, generally, Psionics is the great, prevalent source of mystic power though much of the age.


I was also wondering about the Lawkeepers of Saragar. They have priestly duties, yes? Would they be able to access a source similar to a Templar? I recognize the power of a templar comes from the elemental vortexes, which the Mind Lords do not have access to. However, a Lawkeeper could develop a particularly strong connection to an ideal a mind-lord represents. Might their psionic powers resemble those used by an Ardent (complete psionic)? Or do they definitively have no extra powers?

I’d go with the purely psionic approach; Ardent is a good precident for that sort of thing, I think.

But then, My Athas has always[1] been cut off from the outer planes by the Grey, and thus the Green Age is free of deities. However, one does not need actual divine powers to earn the title of priest …

[1] For values of always that may trace back to the halfling civilization of the Blue Age. I’ll not vouch for anything before then. :slightly_smiling:

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If so, this might also apply to the Kreen with their Chat-Tho. I could see a Kreen Ardent drawing upon the ancestral memory to produce Mantles.

However, I seem to have gotten sidetracked. I came up with a potential aircraft combining an obsidian engine and a guardian orb. My interpretation of an obsidian engine is that, while it does not provide propulsion, it makes the vessel it is attached to sufficiently buoyant so that it can float on the silt sea, and larger obsidian engines are required for larger crafts. Suppose one were to attach an obsidian engine that is one size larger than normal to such a craft. Theoretically, it could become buoyant in air under such circumstances. If some method of propulsion were added, such as a guardian orb capable of using telekinesis, such a craft could become airborne and mobile. A guardian orb could also provide the psionic focus required to run the engine, and would never tire like a normal psion would when operating it for long periods, due to it’s construct nature.

While this might be a little advanced for a decaying civilization like that of Saragar to upkeep, I imagine that during the Green age this might have been a common means of transportation for the psionic elite. It also fits with The_DMs_Revenge’s idea of how slavery would function in the Green Age. Anyone have thoughts on this? Would it fit the feel of that era?

Well, in the 3e Shining South supplement for the Forgotten Realms, they have stats for flying airships,which are stat-ed out as magic items in classic 3e style. They only require the spells Fly and Suspension to create. The Suspension spell, btw, is just a longer/higher level version of Levitate. So, yeah, psionic “floating” via an obsidian orb and propulsion w/ a guardian orb using telekinesis sounds pretty reasonable.

But… even in the Forgotten Realms, there are very few skyships and FR is definitely a high magic setting, so I’d imagine that psionic fling ships would be only for the elite of the Green Age. That’s just my opinion though.

I can definitely see ships like that fitting into the Blue Age. Rhulisti spaceships and submarines anyone?


That’s what I was thinking as well. It’s heavily implied that the Green Age was a very high “magic” time period, but the psionic services and goods were available only to the elite, which is why Arcane magic became so popular, despite the versatility and applicability of psionics. Which brings up another idea. What would Rajaat appear like in the Green Age? He’s a pretty major character, and I imagine as the Time of Magic go closer, he would rise in prominence, if not in respect. What would the reactions of the established psionic elite be to preserving magic? I wonder if they might even confuse it with a type of primitive psionics.

Also, If anyone has stats of Rajaat, from any edition, that would be great. If not, just going by Legends of Athas and what I know of the character, I’m thinking he would be (in addition to being a Pyreen) a Wizard of at least 21st level (I would think he would have to be in order to create a Champion of Rajaat). I also have a suspicion that he made himself into a Champion of Himself, one because why not, and two because his plan appeared to be: “get humanity to kill everyone off but halflings, then kill off humanity myself”. Thus, his Champion specialty would be killing humans specifically, which would explain how he was able to kill his Champions so quickly later on. Being a champion of himself would also give him the ability to draw life from animals instead of plants via an obsidian orb, so he could act convincingly as a preserver and perhaps even restore plant life to Athas by eliminating much of it’s animal life which he would consider aberrant anyway. But that’s just my take on it. i think it would be interesting to run a campaign during the Preserver Jihad or the Cleansing Wars, so any other ideas?

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Oh, and The_DMs_Revenge? I love the idea of Life-shaped spaceships and submersibles, but I don’t understand the mechanics of Lifeshaping well enough to think of how one would go about designing one. If you could provide an explanation for how one would go about designing a life-shaped vehicle, that would be amazing. I have looked through the life-shaping handbook, but I can’t seem to figure out how one would go beyond creating personal gear.

Also, in order to make such a ship, it would at the very least require the following: some method of keeping aloft, some means of propulsion, some means of insulating the ship from the vacuum of space or the pressures of the deep, and some method of circulating the air continually through the ship to avoid COv2 buildup for a specific amount of time.

I was just thinking about hand-waving them into a game as a DM, not constructing them as a PC. I imagine them a lot like Vong ships from the NJO era of Star Wars (please don’t hate me for knowing what those are), living ships built of coral.

In the Lifeshaping Handbook, there’s a lifeshaped creature/item that fulfills each of those functions. A Lifeshaper could easily combine them all, given enough time and “technology”.

A Gon-evauth, for instance is a Lifeshaped hot air balloon / blimp analogue. Such a creature could be covered in scales, have a layer of Lifeshaped coral inside that, and then changed to dwell underwater. Taking in or expelling ballast water is how submarines right now change their buoyancy, which is how a Gon-evauth functions with air. If you were simply inside it instead of under it in a basket, BAM!, you’ve got yourself a Lifeshaped submersible.

If the Messenger comet really was a Rhulisti stasis pod / recolonization ship, dos it matter how ti works? I think the important part will be describing how it works, not really (game mechanics) explaining why it works. I mean, it’s a living creature.

That said, I’d be willing to go back and forth with you on some ideas, if that what you want to do…


I know what the Vong are. I’m pretty sure that they are based on the Rhulisti. Could a life shaper shape a new feature into a creature after it’s been made?
Thanks for the tips. I think I understand what the handbook was saying much better now.
I was thinking, at least flight wise, having a creature that can both float and possesses wings. This would make it more energy efficient, so it could get into the upper atmosphere without getting exhausted by taking short breaks. It would have Very Tough Hyde, Fortified Skeleton, a Survivor Array, and a Self-Healing Unit to prevent it from exploding in low pressure. I would also think it would have the Ultimate Sensory Package. Copying the Ballast idea from the Gon-evauth would provide a replenishable source of air, though they would have to go back periodically to get more. The only missing piece appears to be a propulsion system for interplanetary flight. If I were to make any guess, such a system would be mechanically identical to the water propeller system but cost a third of the creature’s body cost rather than an eighth. However, I can’t seem to think of a propellant that could be effectively incorporated into a living being, which goes back to your point about describing how a life-shaped ship works. How would it work?
I’d love to go back and fourth with ideas.

Well, you could put an “Ion Drive” on it. Does the LSH have an ink jet (or something like it)? Expelling gas (or fire, does anything in there breathe fire?) would both require dipping back into an atmosphere for more fuel, and be very energy efficient.

All this biotech talk has got me thinking about trying to convert Expedition to the Barrier Peaks to be the crash site of the Messenger (or something similar) and convert Temple of the Frog to be where the survivors setup at after.

EDIT: it occurs to me that Ballast would work for an “Ion Drive” propulsion as well.


I don’t think it does, but the rules seem to work in a manner similar to item creation, so it is conceivable that something similar could be developed. An Ion drive or something that expels plasma sounds like a believable form of biological thrust.

I did not think of using the ballast to achieve that affect. perhaps the creature has a special gland were air is heated to plasma and then expelled for propulsion.

If you were to start a reworking of Expedition of the Barrier Peaks for the Messenger, I would be happy to look it over and give my thoughts on it. Who knows, maybe you could even have it published on the main site.

Also, does anyone know if there are official stat write-ups for Rajaat from any edition?

Thought on the Mind Lords. They can’t grant spells (as they aren’t actually gods nor are they Champions of Rajaat or archomentals), but they can stimulate psionic ability.

I would make this a general capability of mind lords. If three mind lords enter a metaconcert and expend 1000 XP, their collective psionic focuses, and 1200 power points, they can convert one level of any given NPC class into a level of Divine Mind. Afterwords, the divine mind (now initiated as a lawkeeper) can continue to advance in the class as normal, but his psionic mantles available are limited to the ones associated with the Mind Lords. Each mind lord has it’s own associated mantle that it is associated with, and the new Divine Mind is limited to the three that belong to the mind lord who gave him power. The power cannot be taken away, however. Nor does it go away if one of the mind lords die. All they do is act as an artificial jumpstart.the mantles granted by the mind lords of Saragar are Death, Life, and Natural World.

This is related to an earlier post about the mind lords, so it is relevant.

Rajaat (The Template):
―Fey (psionic, rhulisti): Rajaat is a fey creature with the psionic and rhulisti subtype.
―Str +4, Con +4, Int +4, Wis +4, +4 Cha (canceled by his own natural ugliness)
―Tower-Shaped: During the day, his strength increases by +10 and his constitution by +4. He gains a +6 bonus to AC during this time, and also gains DR 10/magic (in addition to his other damage reductions). He gains a slam attack that does damage for his size. Also, his wizard level increases by 8 during the day, as if he had gain those levels normally.
―Medium size: Rajaat has no special bonus or penalties due to his size.
―Rajaat’s base land speed is 40 feet.
―Darkvision out to 120 feet. Rajaat can also see four times as well as a human in shadowy illumination.
―Racial Hit Dice: Rajaat begins with 16 levels of fey, which provide 16d6 Hit Dice, a base attack bonus of +8, and base saving throw bonuses of Fort +5, Ref +10, and Will +10. He always has maximum hit points per die.
―Genocidal Focus: Spells and powers that deal damage do +4d6 bonus damage against humans. Any weapon Rajaat wields in combat is considered a dread weapon against humans. The weapon loses this dread ability if Rajaat ceases to use it. Against humans, the weapon’s effective enhancement bonus is +4 better than its normal enhancement bonus and it deals +4d6 points of bonus damage.
―Rajaat chooses one spell of each level 1st through 9th. These chosen spells become Rajaat’s signature spells. Rajaat can channel stored spell energy into signature spells that he did not prepare ahead of time. Rajaat can “lose” any prepared spell in order to cast one of these signature spells that is of the same spell level as the prepared spell or lower (just like a cleric can lose prepared spells in order to cast cure spells of the same level or lower.)
―Magic Master: Rajaat can choose to draw from any energy source by any means he desires. This means he can preserve or defile at will, and can draw power from the grey or the black (and later the Cerulean Storm)
―Sun Casting: During the daylight hours, Rajaat can choose whether to utilize energy from the sun when casting spells. If using sun energy, the terrain is considered abundant. Sun energy has no impact on the environment. If Rajaat spends a move action during his casting (or increases his casting time by a move action for those spells that last longer than a round), he may use the Still Spell, Silent Spell, Empower Spell, or Widen spell feats without an increased to the level of the spell slot. If he extends his casting to a full round (or increases the casting time by a round for spells that take longer than a round), he may use the Maximize Spell or Extend Spell feats without an increase to the level of the spell slot. Spells cast using sun casting end at sunset, no matter how long their durations are.
―Shadow Taint: One of Rajaat’s hands is enveloped in shadow. The hand functions as normal, but is cold to the touch and appears jet black. Rajaat gains a +1 bonus to Hide checks. Living creatures with an Int score of 3 or higher who see the shadow taint must make a Will save DC 11, or become shaken for 1d4 rounds. Black-touched creatures and creatures from the Black are immune to this effect.
―Chill Touch: Rajaat can use chill touch as the spell once per day per class level.
―Undead Presense: Rajaat can conceal his scent of the living. Mindless undead view Rajaat as a fellow undead; while intelligent undead cannot smell Rajaat’s living flesh, they can probably see that Rajaat is very much alive.
―Racial Skills: Rajaat’s fey levels give it skill points equal to 20 x (6 + Int modifier). Its class skills are Concentration, Diplomacy, Disguise, Hide, Knowledge (ancient history), Knowledge (history), Knowledge (nature), Knowledge (psionic), Listen, Move Silently, Psicraft, Search, Sense Motive, Spellcraft, Spot, and Survival. These skills always count as class skills. Rajaat has a +4 racial bonus on Hide, Listen, Move Silently, and Spot checks and a +2 racial bonus on Knowledge (nature) and Survival checks.
―Racial Feats: Rajaat’s fey levels give it 6 feats. Rajaat receives Alertness, Natural Spell, and Eschew Materials as bonus feats.
―+4 natural armor bonus.
―Special Qualities (see above): DR 10/cold iron, DR 10/epic, Energy Storing (as Champion of Rajaat), change shape, child of the Rebirth, immortal, land allegiance, lore, polyglot, unearthly grace, wild empathy, wild shape, the Way. immune to disease, poison, stunning, sleep, paralysis, death effects, disintegration, energy drain, ability drain, ability damage, polymorphing, petrification, or any other attack that alters its form. Immunities can voluntarily be lowered as a move action. Regeneration 10 (Cold and sonic effects deal normal damage to Rajaat. If Rajaat loses a limb or body part, the lost portion regrows in 3d6 minutes. Rajaat can reattach the severed member instantly by holding it to the stump) Spell Resistance 32, Power Resistance 32
―Automatic Languages: Rhulisti. Bonus Languages: Auran, Common, Dwarven, Halfling, Ignan, Elven, Pterran, Sylvan, Terran.
―Favored Class: Any.
―Level Adjustment: +32

Gains Orb of Energy Storing, as Champion of Rajaat (Legends of Athas).

Rajaat also has access to the Dark Lens during the Green Age.

Rajaat has no worshipers or templars. However, if he did have a temperate, he would grant the Knowledge, Magic, Decay, and Destruction domains.

This is Rajaat by the end of the cleansing wars. By this point, he is a level 16 Bard (Nature Bending) a level 17 Wizard, a level 16 psion, a level 10 life-shaper, a level 10 nature master, Level 10 Cerebremancer, a level 10 Arch Defiler, and a level 10 Archmage

Must know feats: Craft wonderous item, craft construct, path dexter, path sinister, brew potionfruit, mastercraft, Rhulisti heritage, blessing of Rajaat

Must know skills: 12 ranks knowledge (nature), Psicraft, Spellcraft

He knows at least the following wizard spells: horrid wilting, hypnotism, open the grey gate, animate dead, deeper darkness, greater dispel magic, wish, control weather, daylight, liveoak, hand of the sorcerer-king, alarm, break enchantment, locate object, nondetection, tongues, true seeing, bestow curse, black tentacles, cause fear, death mark, eyebite, halt undead, levitate, blight


epic spell seeds: mythal

epic power seeds: mythal

this is just to help me make Rajaat. I’ll do a stat write-up later.

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Could you use solar sails for propulsion of a life-shaped space vessel?

For 5e, for the Blue Age:

Artificers as Lifeshapers, with organic tech, and Druids at the top of society. Custom archetypes for the Life Shapers for both classes, biotechnology, that kind of thing. Given that the Pristine Tower and the Dark Lense are artifacts from the Blue Age, I think that makes the most sense. There are only Halfling and Thri-Kreen during this era, and Halflings are completely different - more like traditional elves than any other archetype or trope I can think of.

For halflings, I would also see Fighters, Monks, Rangers, Rogues, and Mystics (Sorcerers) as typical choices. Clerics, especially of Water, make sense, but are probably fewer in number, with Druids being the primary spiritual guides. Barbarians would probably be rare - the image I have of Halfling society is civilized and organized.

For Thri-Kreen, Barbarian, Cleric, Druid, Fighter, Monk, Ranger, Rogue, Mystic (Sorcerer) would all make sense. I imagine Artificer/Life Shaper to be mostly a halfling trade. Thri-Kreen of this age can fly, and most land is only island.

For classes that aren’t present, traditional Bards and Paladins probably wouldn’t exist, per Dark Sun, and Wizardry hasn’t been discovered yet. Warlocks don’t make much sense, but you could adapt the Gray Wizard and Black Wizard as Warlock “patrons”, strange eldritch forces to draw energy from, and assign appropriate archetypes. They’d probably be rather rare in either case.

For story elements, there’s not much written about the Blue Age that I can recall. You can basically make up whatever you want for either the Halflings or the Thri-Kreen. It’s largely a blank slate. The only major event is the end of the Blue Age, when the halflings caused a version of global Red Tide, used the Pristine Tower and Dark Lense to destroy it, turning the Blue Sun to the Yellow Sun. A struggle between the halflings and Athas seems a natural place to start, but politics and the like are also possible, or skirmishes between the halflings and Thri-Kreen. There could also be aquatic races who died out when the Sun turned Yellow, forgotten to history, unknown even by Rajaat and the Sorcerer Kings.

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5e Green Age

I don’t remember many defined story elements here, but it can be presented as a more traditional fantasy world, with some changes.

Artificers/Life Shapers are largely lost. A few remnant enclaves may remain, but they are lost to the Tablelands by the time of the Green Age, so I feel safe in assuming that they’re dwindling. Barbarians, Clerics, Druids, Fighters, Monks, Rangers, Rogues, and Mystics (Sorcerers) all exist. Wizardry is invented at some point, and Preserving magic is taught by Rajaat, with Defiling magic kept secret. At some point, Rajaat teaches a few students for his genocidal plans, but you can set your game at any point in this time line.

You can also experiment with some of the other classes. A sort of psionic Paladin could exist during this age as a product of the religions of their people, the collective faith-channeled psionics powering Paladins, energy drawn upon from their oaths and devotion. Doomed to be exterminated during the Cleansing Wars and their aftermath, this version of Paladin keeps the feel of Dark Sun, while fitting into this gentler age.

Races can be different than other worlds. Athasian Trolls aren’t like typical fantasy trolls - they don’t regenerate or eat ravenously, but they are big and stocky. Gods don’t exist, so feel free to ignore elements that are usually set in stone. Athasian life is mutated compared to other worlds, even in this Age.

The story potential of the Green Age is easier to tap. The diversity of life, fragmented nations, and traditional terrain means that you can run a game of high adventure, something more like traditional D&D with an Athasian flavor to it. The lead up to the Cleansing Wars provides a natural starting point for stories, with hunts for the new and terrifying Defilers, rumors of war-mongering unlike anything ever seen among the humans, and various possible hopes, plans and strategies.

You can run games during the Cleansing Wars, but that’s a tragedy with no release or catharsis - it’s Revenge of the Sith with no New Hope. It’s Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance. Most D&D games don’t include that kind of horror - any PC trolls or orcs or goblins are doomed to extinction, their families and friends all corpses waiting to die. But if your table wants the kinds of stories that can be told with that setting, go for it. It’s just not traditional D&D fare.

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