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Knightly Orders of Ansalon. Thread starter John Cooper Start date Jan 15, John Cooper First Post. I never read any of the main novels in the series, either; the only ones I've ever read were Kendermore and the two about Kang and his band of draconian engineers. I didn't have any of the current 3E Dragonlance books, either; when Sean Everette contacted me with a list of books they were looking to have reviewed, I chose Knightly Orders of Ansalon among two others, neither of which was from the Dragonlance campaign out of curiosity more than anything else.

So, I feel I'm pretty well-versed in "the basics" of the Dragonlance campaign world much of my knowledge having been gleaned from the pages of Dragon magazine over the years , but I'm nowhere near the level of fanatic, and I couldn't tell you much of the recent stuff that's been going on with the most recent novels, other than that there was a Chaos uprising recently on Krynn, the homeworld of the game.

After having read Knightly Orders of Ansalon , I feel like my knowledge has expanded considerably about recent events on Krynn. Despite being a book focused primarily on orders of knights three main ones, specifically, although there's some generic information in chapter one , quite a bit of "background information" is provided about what's been going on in the novels. I can say that the authors of Knightly Orders of Ansalon seem to have devoted quite a bit of effort to "document" what's been happening in the novels, so those that worry that the focus is on the novels as opposed to the campaign world may have some cause for concern.

The same is often true over in the Forgotten Realms , where many sourcebooks seem more concerned with documenting what's been happening in the novels than what you might want to use for your own home campaign set in the Realms.

However, that concern aside, there's plenty of material in Knightly Orders of Ansalon to allow you to run your knightly orders however you see fit, regardless of what the novels say. The cover is a nicely-dome painting by Jason Engle of a mounted blue dragon, with another knight in the foreground raising a lance.

He might be riding a dragon as well, or not - it's hard to tell as he's cut off at waist height. The proportions both human and dragon are very well done, with some intricate details, especially on the breastplates of the armor. I also like the way the dragon's blue scales fade to purple along the wings. The back cover is just a close-up of part of the front cover, but that doesn't matter much as most of it is obscured by a text box in crumbling scroll form with the back-cover blurb. The interior artwork consists of 50 full-color illustrations by 8 different artists.

Many of these paintings are very well done, but many of them are rather small, and none of them are captioned. Not that captioning is required or anything, but I'm afraid I've kind of gotten used to it as it's a Wizard of the Coast standard, and it helps to point out how the painting in question ties in with the material on the page, something that could have helped a few of the illustrations in this book. In any case, my favorites in Knightly Orders of Ansalon include the armored knight on the horse with barding on page 78 this one was signed; it's by Chris Tackett ; the painting of Storm's Keep on page 88; the creepy, blood-drenched woman on page 92; the Blood Oath archer on page ; the mounted rangers on page ; and Jennifer Meyer's fog-shrouded duo one fallen, one still standing on page Chapter Three - Dark Knights: This chapter is set up in the exact same way as chapter two, but focuses on the Dark Knights; the prestige classes are Adjudicator of the Code, Blood Oath archer, and Vision partisan Chapter Four - Legion of Steel: Likewise, this last chapter follows the same exact format as the previous two but focuses on the Legion of Steel; the prestige classes are Legion warrior, Legion mystic, Legion sorcerer, and Legion scout Reading through Knightly Orders of Ansalon started off great but got to be somewhat of a chore; the initial material in the first chapter was interesting, and the Knights of Solamnia chapter was interesting, but the last two chapters sort of dragged since it seemed in many ways to be rereading the second chapter again from a slightly different perspective.

This is no critique of the four authors of the book, for they're not creating this material from scratch so much as doing their best to get it to match the novels in the Dragonlance line of books of which there are now dozens if not scores. The Knights of Solamnia are lawful good paragons of all that is good in the world; they're split into three different organizations, each focused on a specific aspect of "knightlihood" - the Knights of the Crown, Knights of the Sword, and Knights of the Rose.

The Dark Knights, somewhat predictably, are lawful evil, and split up into three distinct orders - the Knights of the Lily, Knights of the Skull, and Knights of the Thorn. It's almost as if Tracy Hickman and Margaret Weis, the original creators and authors of the whole Dragonlance world, decided to pretty much just pattern the Dark Knights on the Knights of Solamnia, only erase the word "good" and pencil in "evil" as needed.

It doesn't seem as if a whole lot of extra effort was put into the Dark Knights to make them that much different from the Knights of Solamnia besides the obvious alignment alteration. The Legion of Steel is a bit more on the creative side, although they can be boiled down to "neutral Knights" - although that's an oversimplification, for at least these guys don't have three "Knights of" orders, and they seem to stand on their own a bit more than the Dark Knights do.

I feel sorry for the four authors of this book, basically being stuck trying to make such material interesting, when so much of it is a rehash.

However, I can place the blame on the current authors as opposed to Hickman and Weis for the greatest oversight in the book: Chapter Three, the Dark Knight chapter, does not have the prestige classes for the Knights of the Lily, Knights of the Skull, and Knights of the Thorn!

Sure, it's got three different prestige classes, and somewhat interesting ones at that, but for a book specifically about the knights on Ansalon Ansalon is the main continent on the planet Krynn, where the majority of the action takes place , such an oversight is well-nigh unforgivable, especially considering that so many of the NPC stats in that chapter actually consist of characters with levels in those prestige classes! Even if the three main Dark Knight prestige classes appeared elsewhere, in a different book which seems somewhat unlikely , you'd think they'd reprint the material here so all of the knight material would be in the knight book , or at the very least tell the reader where he might go to find such information.

The stats in Knightly Orders of Ansalon were also a bit of a disappointment for me. Again, this being my first 3E Dragonlance book, I'm not aware of many of the classes and prestige classes that many of the NPCs in this book have taken levels in, and as such my "unofficial errata" is not going to be as "tight" as I'd like, since there were big chunks of material in many of the stats that I was unable to verify, not having the appropriate material on hand to check it.

Still, with that warning mentioned ahead of time, here's what I did notice during my read through the book: p. It looks as if he spent 25 of 27 skill points. It looks like she spent 39 of 42 skill points. Of course, this is easily fixed by spending one of his 10 outstanding skill points accordingly. Looks like she spent 44 of 54 skill points. Of course, this is easily fixed by spending one of her 10 outstanding skill points accordingly. The lady is called "him" in her Aura of Courage description.

Her Inspire Greatness description says she can affect 2 allies, but as a Knight of the Rose 6, she can only affect 1. He has 11 feats, but should only have 9 5 as a 12th-level character, 1 human bonus feat, 3 fighter bonus feats. Looks like he spent 40 of 45 skill points. He shouldn't have immunity to fear, as that's gained from the wizard 10 substitution level, not he wizard 5 one. Looks like he spent 65 of 66 skill points, but he spent 14 each in Knowledge arcana and Spellcraft, and 15 in Knowledge nobility and royalty , but as a 10th-level character the most he can put into any one skill is 13 points.

Alphabetically, "Gather Information" should come before "Intimidate. It also looks like he spent 42 of 55 skill points. I can't check much of his stats, given that Knight of the Lily information was left out of the book. The Smite Good paragraph is labeled "Smite Evil. Flat-footed AC should be 17, not Speed should be 20 ft. Spent 11 of 18 skill points. Touch AC should be 9, not Flat-footed AC should be 13, not Should have 9 feats, not just 8 5 as a 12th-level character, plus 4 bonus ranger feats.

Also, is she "afflicted," "civilized," "nomad," or what? All of the other humanoid NPCs in this book have some kind of adjective before their racial name. Spent 48 of 54 skill points. This also means you'll have to reassign a different spell than true seeing to be her 6th silent spell, as she can't cast true seeing yet.

Also, I'm not quite sure why she doesn't have an adjective "nomad," "civilized," etc. Feats aren't alphabetized correctly. Overall, not too bad for a page book, ladies! Finally, there were a few things in Knightly Orders of Ansalon that were simply cringeworthy, like my favorite example a pair of white dragons named "Ice" and "Freeze.

Again, I can't fault the four authors of the book for such painful naming conventions; they were stuck with what previous authors have already committed to ink.

Perhaps "carved in stone" would be a more appropriate phrase to use here, if only to denote the permanency with which such decisions last throughout the years. Taken as a whole, Knightly Orders of Ansalon seems to do a pretty good job of codifying the material about the three knightly orders in the Dragonlance novels, although the authors' personal creativity may have been severely hampered by the work of previous novelists.

The three "flavors" of knightly orders presented in these pages might not be the best three examples of knightly orders for a generic campaign although the Knights of Solamnia are pretty much a good "generic" knightly order, easily ported to different campaigns , but they do capture the Dragonlance -specific orders fairly well. The lack of material on the Knights of the Lily, Knights of the Skull, and Knights of the Thorn in the Dark Knights chapter is a glaring oversight along those lines, however.

If you're looking for a book for use with knights in a Dragonlance campaign, this is definitely the book for you. I rate Knightly Orders of Ansalon as a mid-to-high "3 Average. You must log in or register to reply here. Most Liked Threads. Forum list Post thread….


Knightly Orders of Ansalon

Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required. To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number. Would you like to tell us about a lower price? If you are a seller for this product, would you like to suggest updates through seller support? Since the Age of Dreams, warriors have raised arms for good and evil across the face of Krynn.


Knightly Orders of Ansalon

An order rose against them, Dark Knights who work to control the people of Ansalon with an iron fist. The Legion of Steel was…. The Knights of Solamnia go into battle for honor and justice, standing against the evils of the world in the service of their patron gods. The Legion of Steel was founded to battle oppression from all sides, fighting for freedom. In kingdoms and keeps across the land, warriors take up arms in the service of a lord, a god, or a cause. These are the knights of Ansalon. Knightly Orders of Ansalon is a resource for games set in the world of Dragonlance.


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