If I Ruled the Multiverse

 Posted by on December 10, 2012  Filed as: Editorial  Add comments
Dec 102012

Part of the D&DNext Blog Carnival organized by Richard Green.

I’ve never been one to take anything and run it exactly as written. I liked the Great Wheel cosmology. I like some of the changes that came with 4th edition. What I really want though, is a toolset.

My ideal 5e multi-verse would contain example planes, with some means of travel between them, and maybe some Academic theory on the way the universe works. Our own understanding of the real universe is a lot of theory waiting to be disproved. They kept making new discoveries on the future epic Star Trek. Why would a fantasy setting have it all worked out?

Take the Great Wheel as an example. Maybe this is how dwarven scholars explain the multi-verse. The wheel is a key component in mining and engineering. They’d like that. Elves on the other hand would take a more 4e like approach, with planes mirroring and overlapping on one another.

Even with this ‘use what you need’ approach, there are a few things I’d want it to have.

Transitive Planes

By this I mean a plane whose main purpose is to connect planes. It gives you a way to physically travel from one plane to another. This allows for space like adventures or even high fantasy pirate-like action. The Astral Plane serves this purpose well. I also like the Phlogiston, ala Spelljammer. The Phlogiston is the stuff that separates whole worlds. If you were to travel from the Forgotten Realms to Dark Sun in a vessel, you’d go through the Phlogiston.

The problem with the Phlogiston then is, where is the Far Realm? Is it just one world within the Phlogiston? Is it like Marvel’s negative zone with both multi-verses slowly incurring on the other.

Demi Planes

I had a DM run us through a couple sessions in the Elemental Plane of Wheat. Yes, it was silly, and yes, he probably could have set it somewhere else but it was fun. It was nice to have a small plane that a million parties weren’t already invested in, that we could burn down with out it being the end of all things. Whatever happens I want to be able to have small, obscure planes.  Bonus if our epic wizards could make their own.

Planar Travel

I want cool ways to get from one plane to another, without it being as simple as a teleportation spell. Shadow roads, fey circles, sailing the River Styx and flying through the Astral Sea. When it comes to the Planes, the journey is have the fun.


I still want Sigil. You can’t have it, it’s mine. It shall always be!

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Brian Liberge

Brian Liberge is a father of one, living in Boston, MA. Introduced to AD&D at an early age, he’s continued to update with the editions, and new games. He loves home-brewed ideas, is honest to a fault, and thinks that ideas and mechanics should absolutely be shared between systems. With a B.S. Degree in Theatre Arts, a job in Information Technology, and a love of strategy gaming, he tries to bring the best of each into his new creations for StufferShack. Check out his latest book the Midgard Bestiary for 4e, available now. Profile Page / Article Portfolio

  One Response to “If I Ruled the Multiverse”

  1. Oh. I didn’t realize you could put the logo into the post. Interesting.

    I pretty much agree with you on everything but especially the toolbox requirement and the uncertainty of maps.

    I once ran a superhero game where in the PCs found a secret base that had a trapped dimensional navigation AI bot in it. She wasn’t super powerful combat wise but she had super powerful teleportation powers. The shtick I used for her that she teleported by ‘finding’ portals that were already there. So step into the cupboard and you come out in Atlantis, drop into the fountain there and you are in a back alley in the city of brass and if you make a quick scamper two blocks down there is a portal that will take you back to where your friends are.

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