What is the Cat Lord? Well, to me it’s something my friend Mark told me about when he was reading Gord of Greyhawk back in high school, a magical character with awesome power. Having owned three cats in my lifetime, I’d say he has to be an interesting fellow, a rather profound god of feline things. This of course isn’t to be confused with Bast, the Egyptian goddess of cats, but something more D&D based.
I’d picked up D&D 1st Edition’s Monster Manual II at some point, and certainly the Cat Lord appeared in there, two great pictures of him done by Larry Elmore and Harry Quinn helping to flesh out this mysterious demi-god.
He seems an interesting enough fellow, all cats digging him, and if you ever play a campaign based on the planes, particularly Planescape, I’d suggest throwing him in. I mean, why not, he’s the perfect neutral foil to either a good or evil party who could lead the characters on a wild quest of whimsy. It doesn’t even have to be based in his home plane of The Beastlands, just throw him in anywhere, having him show up in a tavern with a girl on each arm, or maybe on a fence playing with a mouse.
You know, Ed Greenwood had his Elminster to push his campaigns forward in the Forgotten Realms, my friend Mark always used an elder statesman wizard named Greydragon, but I think the Cat Lord makes even more sense. I mean, break the mold! Throw in a weretiger, or better yet, a werepantheress or something as a party NPC or priest, someone who has a connection to the lord of all things feline. Got a wizard PC with a cat familiar? Hope he’s treating it right because the Cat Lord just showed up!
I mean Gygax’s Gord was the great-great grandson of the Cat Lord, so maybe the ‘big tom’ gets around, ya know? I’m sure you’ve had a character related to a king or sultan or something, so why not the Cat Lord, and I bet [like Gord] they’d make a hell of a rogue!
If you want to get really funky, why not jack them with some Tiefling blood, make them even more cat-like. Maybe the Cat Lord had too much to drink with a Succubus one night in Sigil and BANG, a new character with an epic back-story is born. And remember, the Tony DiTerlizzi rendition of the Cat Lord is female, so this could also make an interesting wrinkle.
Whatever the case, we’re talking a good time had by all, so crack out that old Monster Manual II [you know the Jeff Easley hill giant cover] or even the 3rd Edition Epic Level Handbook [pg. 305] and stir the creative pot!
For some further insight, pick up a copy of Saga of the Old City by Gary himself and have a gander. I mean, how many of you have Gygax on your list of authors you’ve read? Time to add him in there!
Note: Todd Lockwood said the TSR staff describes the Cat Lord as a very feline looking character, more so than was perceived in the initial phases of creation, his newest look combining the black essence of a panther with the facial look of a lynx. Whatever the aspect, he/she still makes for a pretty great NPC.
Oh, and as promised, all of you faithful get to see the next installment of the Noodles/Taylor comic which has yet to find a title, although we are working on that daily! Our current ‘process’ includes the creation of characters for the pieces, something that helps define what we are trying to do. To this point we’ve only repeated the wizard character, although in this one he doesn’t have a mustache. Give a vote, mustache or no? And yes, I hope you enjoy! If you missed the previous comic, you can find it here.