The wizards of Krynn are granted magic through the power of the three moons. To prevent the awesome powers of wizardry from being wielded by the irresponsible, they require young mages to take a Test proving both their skill and level of responsibility—as well as their level of devotion to magic itself. The Orders of High Sorcery rule over arcane magic and those who practice it from within mighty bastions of power, the Towers of High Sorcery.
This sourcebook contains details of the Towers of High Sorcery. The Towers of Wayreth and Nightlund are explained in great detail, while the "lost" Towers of past ages are presented for the first time anywhere! New prestige classes, spells, magical items, and artifacts are presented—many having been seen only in Dragonlance fiction up until this point. The Test of High Sorcery, an important part of the career of any Dragonlance wizard, is explained in detail, with detailed steps on how to design a Test either as a solo-adventure for the wizard character or a dangerous quest for the entire party!
- The Towers of High Sorcery are some of the most popular and asked-about locations in the best-selling Dragonlance novel line.
- The cover features a Larry Elmore painting of Raistlin—by far the most popular character in the history of the saga.
- Contains new Dragonlance-specific d20 System prestige classes, feats, spells, magical items, and artifacts!
Towers of High Sorcery (2004), by Margaret Weis, Chris Pierson, and Jamie Chambers, is a wizards sourcebook for Dragonlance 3e. It was published in August 2004.
About the Cover. Dragonlance's two most famous wizards, Raistlin and Dalamar, share the cover. The Portal to the Abyss, one of the artifacts described in this book, appears in the background.
Continuing Sovereign's Dragonlance Saga. Sovereign's fifth supplement for the Dragonlance 3e line was something new. They'd previously publishing setting books, a bestiary, and the start of an epic campaign. Towers of High Sorcery was their first class splatbook, focusing on the wizards of the setting. Concentrating on wizards was a good choice for a first splatbook because Raistlin had always been one of the biggest stars of the Dragonlance Saga, which had also increased interest in the setting's magic users.
Expanding D&D. Many of the rules expansions in Towers of High Sorcery are spread out across three topics: prestige classes, magic items, and spells.
Prestige classes offered a great way to specialize characters and to define settings during the 3e era; it had already been used well in Dragonlance Campaign Setting (2003) and Age of Mortals (2003). Towers of High Sorcery reprints the Wizard of High Sorcery prestige class from Dragonlance Campaign Setting with a minor revision to accommodate non-specialist wizards. It also introduces many more specialties tied to the world of Krynn: Dark Dwarf Savant, Dreamshaper, Griffon Wizard, Renegade Hunter, Sea Mage, Spell Broker, Sylvan Mage, and Winternorn.
The spells cover a wide swath of Dragonlance history. Some of them update the "Spells of High Sorcery" from way back in Dragonlance Adventures (1987) while others explain magical events from the books.
The magic items have similar ancestries. A few originated in Dragonlance Adventures, but many more first appeared in stories, including big name artifacts like the Portal to the Abyss from Dragonlance Legends (1986) and the Dragon Orbs from Dragonlance Chronicles (1984-1985).
However, the biggest mechanical expansion in Towers of High Sorcery is its rule system for The Test. This is the method by which a magic-user can become a wizard of high sorcery, something that's always been central to the story of Dragonlance's Raistlin. Margaret Weis first wrote about it in "The Test of the Twins", a short story in Dragon #83 (March 1984). It got even more attention in a solo gamebook by Terry Phillips called The Soulforge (1985), then in Margaret Weis' novel The Soulforge (1998), which drew inspiration from Phillips' book. GMs got their first good look at creating a Test in The Last Tower: The Legacy of Raistlin (1997). Now, Dragonlance 3e got a Test-ing system too, with plenty of advice on creating the encounters, plus a risk/reward system that allows wizards to choose their own danger level.
About The Dragon Orbs. The Dragon Orbs that appear in this book were originally the Orbs of Dragonkind, which debuted in Supplement III: Eldritch Wizardry (1976). They were pretty generic artifacts except for the fact that their power derived from imprisoned dragons; the dragons within the more powerful orbs possessed malign intelligences that could take over their users. The AD&D Dungeon Masters Guide (1979) kept these ideas, but made the orbs more draconic by adding the ability to charm dragons.
When the Dragonlance adventures reintroduced the orbs in DL6: "Dragons of Ice" (1985), it made them more dangerous than ever. They now summoned dragons and were constantly a threat to charm the characters who used them! DL10: "Dragons of Dreams" (1986) may have been the most famous Dragonlance adventure, and it was all about what happened when a ruler came under a dragon orb's control.
The 3e variant of the dragon orb combines much of their old functionality, but maintains them as entirely malevolent items.
Expanding Krynn. Towers of High Sorcery details all five of its eponymous towers.
The surviving towers of Wayreth and Palanthas were of course well-known to fans, dating back to the original Dragonlance adventures and classic novel series like Dragonlance Legends (1986) and The Defenders of Magic (1994-1995). They got particular attention in SAGA days. The Last Tower: The Legacy of Raistlin (1997) outlined the history of all the towers, but focused on Wayreth. Palanthas (1998) touched upon the ruins of that tower, which had by then been moved to Nightlund.
The lost towers of Daltigoth, Istar, and Losarcum were much less known, with the major source of information on them being Chris Pierson's Kingpriest Trilogy (2001-2003). Lucky for Sovereign, Pierson was available to write for Towers of High Sorcery and detailed all three towers. His material on Daltigoth and Losarcum was almost entirely new — the supplement's biggest expansion to Krynnish lore.
At around the same time, Margaret Weis was writing about the returned Tower of Istar in Amber & Ashes (2004), while the raising of the tower of Daltigoth was appearing in the historical Ergoth trilogy (2003-2004).
Towers of High Sorcery also details a few other magical citadels, though readers felt one was notably absent: the Lost Citadel from the Defenders of Magic trilogy.
NPCs of Note. Raistlin gts statted up here as a 16-year-old first level wizard. It's his least powerful stat block ever, and a fun contrast to the god-like Raistlin who appears in Legends of the Twins (2006).
Dalamar the Dark, who originated in Test of the Twins (1986), and Magius, who first appeared in The Legend of Huma (1988) are a few qizards who get some spotlight.
About the Creators. Towers of High Sorcery was written by a trio of Dragonlance stars: Chronicles writer Margaret Weis, novel writer Chris Pierson, and line developer Jamie Chambers.
About the Product Historian
The history of this product was researched and written by Shannon Appelcline, the editor-in-chief of RPGnet and the author of Designers & Dragons - a history of the roleplaying industry told one company at a time. Please feel free to mail corrections, comments, and additions to firstname.lastname@example.org.