I have had an incredibly busy week, so much so that I missed blogging on Monday completely! What I should have been doing is working on the D&D 5th Edition conversion to a D100 system. I am doing this conversion very much with a Rolemaster hat on and it is interesting to see what D&D has that Rolemaster doesn’t and what it does very differently. One of those are the Demons and Devils.
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You can tell I am working on the Monster Manual right now can’t you. Demons are a classic fantasy monster and we have our own rolemaster demons with our type 1 to 5 pales and so on. When you compare that to the D&D world you get an entire ecology of abominations to play with from relatively weak monsters to named demon princes. I had forgotten just how many of these there actually were in the core D&D books.
I think that D&D had its origins in a fairly real world concept. You can almost see the fighter class being cast as a crusading knight. As soon as you take a step in that Christian direction then demons and devils are nature enemies to be defeated.
Rolemaster has a strong Tolkien heritage
Rolemaster on the other hand has a strong Tolkien heritage and in that setting there are certainly no devils but the Balrog certainly seems demonic even if they are of the maiar. Once you step away from middle earth then that demonic niche needs filling. I think the developers gave us elven demons and human demons to fill the gap. Seeing as Middle Earth had no devils then Rolemaster has no devils.
I think it is interesting that in 30+ years I have never felt the need to reintroduce devils back into the monsterous ecology of my game world which is in fact their natural environment of Faerun.