Friday, September 11, 2020

One of my favorite OD&D villains - The Egg of Coot For Your Old School Campaign


Today on the blog a quick update & expansion from a blog entry that appeared in 2016. Now on with the show. 

The Egg of Coot is describe as;"Some scholars believe that it is one of the remaining servitors of the Outer Beings. In the Age of Blackmoor, these servitors are referred to as Elder Demons, and once dominated the entire continent. The Egg appears as a huge globe of mossy grey flesh and eyeballs and mouths randomly scattered across the slimy surface. The Egg is buried deep under ground and almost never moves. There are however tunnels leading to it which are used by its Keepers to contact and preserve the Egg. Its Spawn is of similar appearance. The Spawn of Coot has a relationship to the Egg as between Trees of Life and their Mother Trees. "

There are evils of the worlds of D&D and then there's the iconic, egotistical, weird, & downright nasty Egg of Coot. This thing has been around since the dawn of the original  Blackmoor campaign & its minions have cost me more then one PC over the years. My buddy Larry created adventures based on the mock up covers of Havard featured in this article.

Forget Strahd von Zarovich or any of the other iconic TSR era vile villains; The Egg of Coot is bio mechanical villain &  relic from Blackmoor's ancient era. The thing has been around since Dave Arneson's Blackmoor campaign from the early days of OD&D. My own interactions with the evil of the Egg came about when my friend Larry came across Harvard Blackmoor's 2009 Egg of Croot blog entry.
 Larry grabbed some of the concepts that Havard put out & we began to face down some of the ill breeded horrors that came from the weirdness of the egg.This was  after the appearance of one of the Empire's scout ships as a part of a dungeon that our party of adventurers were exploring.

What really got Larry stirring was when I brought over my copy of Astonishing Sorcerers and Swordsmen of Hyperborea (which is now counting down three or less hours for the second edition). The egg's minions began to appear popping up across the planes in Larry's, Steven's campaigns, and Peter's campaign all of them looking for pockets of caches of lost Beagle & Warden interstellar technology. The Egg was a completely evil entity that mocked the players at every turn with off color graffiti & all kinds of evil humor. The Egg is a hate of old times that has come down from the very beginning of D&D continues its evil to this day. The thing that it is insidious is the fact that in each & every Blackmoor city, settlement, and village is an agent of the Egg of Coot exists

Havard actually has a breakdown of the Blackmoor technology; he's done a really good job of dealing with some of the OD&D Beagle technology on his own website.
The sci fi technology ties back into the Temple of the Frog & it's so iconic for me.
"The Egg is the definition of Evil. It is highly intelligent and communicates with its fanatical followers through Telepathy. " You don't want to encounter its evil if it can be dangerous & very devious in its machinations."

The Egg's evil is completely behind the Temple of the Frog & has ties now to some of the events of today's Dark Albion game (a blog entry for another time). The game I played today has a deep connection to Return to the Temple of the Frog for third edition AD&D.   
The science fantasy aspect of the Egg of Croot is one of the iconic back bones of the Blackmoor setting. These seem to follow in the wake of the appearance of the Egg of Coot. There are several science fantasy devices that I came across today.

There is a really nice OD&D resource that Havard designed that's available through the Vaults of Pandius website. This has all of the background that a dungeon master needs to introduce the Egg of Coot into their own games. There are also several articles that have more technological artifacts from Bloormoor. These include 
The Technological Battlefield by James Ruhland from the Mystara Mailing List posted 25 December 1999.Additional tech weapons by Alex Benson, from the Mystara Mailing List posted 6 December 1999.
  & Sample tech weapons by Rob, from the Mystara Mailing List posted 3 December 1999.  As well as the Alien Devices from Blackmoor by Dave L. Arneson and David J. Ritchie, from DA3 City of the Gods.
Finally there's the light sabre rules that S.Lentz made; Light Sabre by S. Lentz, from the Mystara Mailing List posted 7 September 1999.

Note because the Egg of Coot is a higher dimensional being it has access to a wide variety of campaign settings including OSR & old school ones such as Greyhawk, Godbound/Cha'alt Earth, & even Cha'alt itself. Is the  Egg more powerful then the gods or Mystara's immortals?! No but it is a very definitive Lovecraftian menace across a wide variety of spectrum. 


The Egg has been imprisoned for eons & is using whatever means it can to expand its reach across the planes. This is one of the reasons that the other night when speaking with players for Castles & Crusades there was speculation about the fact that they were worried that the egg might show up again?! 

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