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The symbol at the Howling Gates

howling gates symbol  

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During a certain recent thread in the game, the question of what an Elder Sign (or Elder Seal, or Elder Sigil) looks like arose repeatedly. Lucius Tarquinus insisted that the seal at the Howling Gates is [u]not[/u] the Elder Sign; it must be admitted, however, that he is both a) prejudiced by his experience in other worlds and b) more than a little insane.

This is the symbol at the Howling Gates:


The symbol pictured is almost certainly a work of near-complete fiction, much like the Simon "translation" of the [i]Necronomicon[/i] sold in stores. The Simon Necronomicon contains many haphazardly collected translations of Sumerian/Babylonian rituals along with Cthulhu Mythos names and pure nonsense. If one had to give this symbol a name, the tag "symbol of the Necronomicon" is probably the most honest and accurate.

[b]Important:[/b] The Simon Necronomicon may be an influence in the writing of this game. Simply because it is a hoax in real life does not mean that the symbol on its cover, or passages quoted from this work of fiction, are not pertinent to the world of MagicDuel. [spoiler]As nearly as I can tell, the reverse is true, and the Simon Necronomicon and passages from it play actual roles in the reality of MagicDuel's special world. References to certain Mesopotamian gods such as Enki seem to confirm my (Sebastian, the player's) suspicions about the origin of the material shown to Lucius Tarquinus.[/spoiler]

[url="http://www.miskatonic.net/pickman/mythos/sign.htm"]This page[/url] is useful to those wanting a quick bit of history on Elder Signs and what they look like.

This Elder Sign was invented by August Derleth, and is prominently featured in the Chaosium [i]Call of Cthulhu[/i] roleplaying game:

This Elder Sign was drawn by H.P. Lovecraft in one of his letters:

[url="http://warlockasylum.wordpress.com/open-letter-to-dan-harms-part-9-the-hoax-that-was-never-created/"]This guy[/url] claims that the Simon [i]Necronomicon[/i] is not a hoax. Like all cultists, he seems to be completely insane. His linguistic arguments are easily exploded by the [url="http://www.geocities.com/soho/9879/necname.htm"]link provided[/url] on the [url="http://magicduel.invisionzone.com//index.php?showtopic=1025"]Yog-Sothoth thread[/url].

To be absolutely clear, I make [b]no representation whatsoever[/b] about the utility of this information to my fellow players. I provide it simply because I know at least one other player was very curious about the Elder Sign and what it might look like. Lucius Tarquinus' prejudices have some probability of being totally off-base; he would never admit it, but he has no idea what the Elder Sign/Elder Seal/Eldritch Weasel looks like in the world of MagicDuel.

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Note to Tarquinus or Moderator... there is something about the final image that is a spoiler.. for something to come. Tarquinus... no more must be said on that matter. It is a storyline that will be unfolding in the near future. The image is hilarious, but sadly does not belong here at this time.

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Whew.. it seems that Lady chance has given me another piece of information... ~_~
Well, I'll look forward to what happens in the future.. I know a bit about Ctulthu myth myself, and I was hoping that MD, with its very unique and uncommon background, does not incorporate legends from our own world, but rather a completely distinct one. Well, I guess I'll just see what happens next..

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[quote name='Udgard' post='16898' date='Sep 18 2008, 12:08 AM']I know a bit about Ctulthu myth myself, and I was hoping that MD, with its very unique and uncommon background, does not incorporate legends from our own world, but rather a completely distinct one.[/quote]
As you probably know, two gods from Cthulhu mythology have been explicitly mentioned in MD. Granted, everyone has his/her own view of these entities, but Yog-Sothoth is a pretty potent symbol.

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Yes, I had hoped that it was a coincidence, but I guess that might be some of the basis of MD after all.. Hmm, when it starts to come to legends people can easily find more info on, I'm sure that this part of storyline will revolve VERY fast..

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • Root Admin

game bases are not in any myth you can possible refer to. the use of certain elemtns from other myth legends or real situations is because those elements build the world outside the game as we know it. Fiction, if you can say this, is also part of our reality. I consider important the feelings and the results of a certain fictioal element , not only its truth.

Real legends and fact about magic things are long lost, moth of the things we know today are told by people at the edge of sanity, cultists, sick writers that bend truth so that they present their own version. The true legacy that carries on is both in real legends and myth but also in the EFFECTS of some fictional works...i am talking about the effects on the human imagination and understanding of this magical world we live in.

Magicduel itself is part of this in a way. The creatures used in the game are fictional, however some represent very good well defined states of our spirit. Features in this game and the final EFFECT it has on players, makes this whole magicduel legend a tool to teach people about a special part of their existance.

When i used that sign i was thinking about this. I might have done a mistake doing it, i am not sure yet if so. Your reactions to this matter a lot. I am a maniac in having original work, i spent a lot of time in doing research and carefully study all implications of the land names used in the game, the principles, and many other things, and to have a spot of "copied material" like that seal, is unacceptable unless i hoped to achieve a certain effect with it, one of the effects desired was to have peope researching some things in that direction.

i turned this into a poll, please vote and spread the link to those that care about this. I dont think its important enough for all players so i wont post it on main news log.


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A strict basis in myth was not meant to be implied; how I react to the symbol and how the character reacts to the symbol are not necessarily the same.

That said, I think we must acknowledge the impact that all myth has had on human consciousness. The concepts of Marind's ghost, the shades and the angiens, the feud between Gabriel Wind and Daniel Raven, and especially the story of the founding of Marind's Bell are not new ideas, but rather familiar stories told through a different prism.

I have argued in gaming articles that a properly constructed myth [b]must[/b] employ resonant archetypes and familiar stories. In my view, the legends of the MD world succeed in this kind of mythmaking quite admirably.

Is the symbol at the Gates inappropriate? I think not; despite the frenzied jabbering of some about Enki and other Sumerian gods based on passages taken from the Simon [i]Necronomicon[/i], I doubt most serious players would credit a direct linkage between MD and earthly myth. The use of the name Yog-Sothoth is arguably a much bigger problem, for this is a relatively well-defined character with major implications for the cosmology of MD. Though I cannot recall where I saw them, I find the references to the gods of MD much more appealing.

On the other hand, Lucius Tarquinus was a predefined character in another game setting before I signed on to MD, and it so happens that his enemy was Yog-Sothoth. I have had a [b]great[/b] deal of fun with this idea, having Tarquinus harangue the Gates from time to time. This behavior confuses and upsets other players, and I feeel that reaction adds to the setting's sense of depth.

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  • 9 months later...

It's interesting to me that I no longer see this sign on the gate...
Anyone know why?
I have been asking around, but I can't seem to get a straight answer from anyone...

Edit: Got my answer, thank-you King Manu!

Edited by Kyphis the Bard
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Well, King Manu, you mentioned it is not related to something already existing. But take a look at the pentagramm circle of the PC game Hellgate London, they look similar and their circle does have a background - maybe people refered yours to their?

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  • 1 month later...
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