Wizards of the Coast’s Mike Mearls has been lifting the lid on upcoming source book Mordenkainen’s Tome of Foes, and it sounds like it’s stuffed to the gills with the famous wizard’s personality.
“It’s not just a book of monsters and lore,” Mike Mearls says in the latest issue of Dragon+. “We really get inside the head of Mordenkainen, as this wizard from the world of Greyhawk is intently interested in the cosmic-level conflict that rages within the world of D&D.
According to Mearls, Mordenkainen adheres to a concept called “the balance”, which might sound a bit Star Wars to fans of that series, but means he believes that the forces of good and evil in the universe must be kept in strict harmony. If one gets too strong, it upsets that balance and could undermine the cosmic order, turning even a force for good into something much more selfish.
“A lot of what Mordenkainen does is look into the past and try to understand how the cosmos works, and to understand the different folk—both good and evil—and view them all as potential threats. Evil is the more immediate threat but eventually if good grows too powerful then that’s also bad for the cosmos.
“Mordenkainen believes that if lawful good became the dominant force to the point where it could defeat all the others, it would be beneficial in the short term but it’s just a matter of time before it turns into tyranny. Eventually the chaotic good people would be the ones being sent to prison. The evil alignments are called evil for a reason, because they’re selfish and destructive, but Mordenkainen’s beliefs are that any alignment which grows too powerful will eventually be so self-absorbed and so self-interested that every other faction and group will suffer.”
To find out more about Mordenkainen’s Tome of Foes, visit the official D&D website.