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My first exposure to Thay was in the figure of Edwin, an arrogant character in the Baldur's Gate video game series. He was very far from his homeland, but he brought a distinctive accent and attitude with him. Edwin's portrait was serious, his lines were sarcastic and amusing, and he was the best damned arcane caster in the game. He made such a first impression that I quickly thought of Thay when the time came to run my first evil campaign. When I turned to the published materials, though, I couldn't find enough to satisfy my curiosity. For such a large and populous country, Thay seemed like a place meant to be visited, and I wanted the PCs to live there. So I fell back on an old motto: if you want something done right (read as: your way), do it yourself.
I want to encourage others to give Thay a chance as the setting for a whole campaign, and not just a one-shot raid into bad-guy territory. I also want to share the things that I've done to give Thay definition, in the hopes that someone else will be able to benefit from it. I started with the official supplements, which are very entertaining and useful, and worked outward from there. I didn't try to stay in line with the supplements or the novels, so please keep in mind that I depart from the canon. If you're looking for more details on the regions and peoples of Thay, or for an idea of how one DM set up an evil game, I hope you will find what you are looking for here.
Advice on Running an Evil Campaign: Things I learned throughout my first evil campaign.
My Setup: The thought process that took me through the early stages of my campaign.
Thay Character Creation: A guide to common character races, classes, and cultural details.
Thayan Character Names: A thematic list of first names and surnames for home-grown characters.
Thayan Name Generator: A random name generator comprised of thematic sounds.
Thay By Region: Details about religion, industries, population, and other aspects of the tharchs.
The City of Eltabbar: An organized breakdown of Thay's capital city.
The City of Tyraturos : A breakdown of Thay's crossroads metropolis.
A Thayan Timeline: A breakdown of historical events that have greatly affected Thay and House Valgon.
Religion in Thay: A look at religion in Thay and a calendar of commonly celebrated holidays.
The Goddess Samora: A new evil deity created for use in our game but suitable to Faerun at large.
Thayan Noble Houses: A quick and dirty list of the 91 major noble houses I created for our Thayan campaign.
House Valgon in Eltabbar: The family tree of the player characters based in Eltabbar.
House Valgon in Tyraturos: The family tree of the player characters based in Tyraturos.
Kismet's Guide to Thay: A blog dedicated to exploring the everyday details of Thay.