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Footnote: 13th Age

September 26, 2012 Leave a comment

Given I mentioned the use of a 13th age mechanic in terms of the icon relationships, I thought I’d explain basically what I’m doing and what exactly the game I got it from is.

Basically it’s an RPG by some of the designers behind 3rd and 4th edition. It has a focus on role playing above combat and it’s got a lot of mechanics I like that can be ported into those editions without much alteration. If any catch your eye I have a beta version of the sourcebook (not everything’s there and its unreleased, so not something to be shared around) copied to the shared folder for more information. If you want to use any of these mechanics, let me know.

A quick rundown of some of the mechanics it uses are:

Icons/relationships

Adventurers don’t live in a vacuum – they have relationships to the powerful forces of the setting that they can call on over the course of their adventures. This I thought was simple to port and hopefully makes the world feel a lot more alive – a Galaxy’s a big place, might as well have recurring characters. besides, I love reputation systems, so I’ve done so verbatim. Weeeelll, I say verbatim, but I took a few creative liberties with who they are and what they do. They roughly correspond with the outlined archetypes, but none as obviously as you might think. So don’t worry about spoilers is what I’m saying.

Backgrounds instead of skills.

You put points into different elements of your background then when you need to make a skill check you roll 1d20+relevant ability modifier+relevant background. It’s a really flexible system that rewards cunning role playing. This kind of replaces the entire skill system, so if anything it’s something to keep in mind when thinking about your skills, not something that necessarily needs porting.

One Unique Thing

Each character has one non-mechanical unique thing about them that defines them, and differentiates them from the rest of the population. The only reason this isn’t a thing I’ve ported is you can totally already do this yourself. It’s non-mechanical, so feel free to go nuts with it if you want.

Escalation Die

As combat progresses, a d6 increments, adding onto attack rolls as the party learns their foe’s tactics and how best to defeat them. This seems easily open to being added, but with a party this size, you’ll probably have no trouble with combat, at least until I figure out what you guys are capable of.

Incremental Advances

As you complete encounters you can earn a potential feature of your next level up as a kind of try-before-you buy system. Be it a minor ability, attribute bonus, skill increase etc. You don’t have to keep it, but it means as you go on, your learning and experience is represented, and you get to test out how new abilities work with your build. This is usually a reward for excellent role playing, but 13th age only has 10 levels, compared to 4th edition’s 30, so there’s really not any reason it needs to be included – you have planet of opportunities to respec anyway.

Gridless Combat

13th Age is a very flexible system and wants to keep the action open to interpretation. This can’t be ported to 4th edition for obvious reasons.

~~~

The system isn’t finished and they’re still working out the kinks, hence why this is a 4th edition game, not a 13th age game, but I’ve said before, this campaign will have a role playing focus, so these can be seen as optional systems to help  you do so.

None of this has to go anywhere and I was totally not payed by the creators to include this stuff (I wish – I got this from their kickstarter) but these are some options on the table so to speak.

Categories: Behind the Scenes

Mechanics: Icon Relationships

September 25, 2012 8 comments

The 13 Major Players, or Icons as I probably should call them because it’s way catchier, they’re a pretty important part of the setting, and that’s what 13th Age where I stole the system from which inspired me in a completely non-plagiaristic way called them. You’ll be working for or against them most of the time, unless it’s something personal, and even then they have a tendency to meddle.

But how does that work mechanically? Well it’s pretty simple.

You each start out with 3 relationship points that represent your character’s “footprint” in the galaxy so far. You can spend these points on each of the 12 known icons to gain either positive (+), negative (-) or conflicted (~) relationships with them. The form this takes is up to you – it might be a familiarity with their practices, they might be your sworn enemy, or you might have a troubled past with them and their followers. Whatever the case, you’ve got some experience with them.

An example might be a space pirate who occasionally raided The World Builder’s ships (-1), and frequently found herself in business with the Huntsman’s agents while doing so (+2).

Your relationship value determine the number of d6es you can roll to invoke it. You’re hoping for 5s (complicated success) or 6s (outright success).

With this established, you can start to use those relationships to your advantage. Our Pirate might be in a spot of trouble with some Whetstone-Tuatha mercenaries, and willing to make a deal with the Huntsman’s lackeys to throw her pursuers off her trail. So she’d roll 2d6 based on her relationship with the Huntsman. If a 5 turns up, the pirate might encounter one of his agents she previously antagonized, still sore about losing a contract. He’d give chase, only to run headlong into the people already pursuing her, allowing her to slip away in the confusion if she’s quick enough. If a 6 turns up however, things go a lot more smoothly – one of her fences agrees to let her hide out for a few days, for  a reasonable price. If both show up, well, maybe that price wasn’t so reasonable after all.

Of course,  if neither come up and the time is right – say she rolled snake eyes – it might be because something else happened entirely. There’s a chance one of the other icons did something unexpected, and she’d best hope it wasn’t the World Builder.

In other news:

Ranneko has completed a character sheet for Lachlan – a human thief seeking his true love and a fortune to go with her.

He’s travelled from his remote colony to Ferossa to attend the Touchdown Festival – the 50th anniversary of Ferrosa’s founding, and a momentous occasion for Whetstone-Tuatha. This event is significant enough that The World Builder himself – Lord Ceylon Tuatha will be in attendance. As a wise and powerful druid, people from all corners of the galaxy will be gathering to hopefully partake in his unique insight. The colony will be unusually crowded, but the chance to seek the council of Lord Tuatha and perhaps help himself to the guest’s valuables are too much to resist.*

*Unless he decides to change any of the above motivations or details.

That’s the scene as it’s set at the start of the campaign. You’ll all be aware of it, and it should help explain what you’re all doing at the time.

In order to better figure out relationships and motivations, I’ll be hosting a meeting in what I hope to be the session time slot within the Roll20 app, which should also help everyone get familiar with it before we play. I’m thinking 9am Sunday my time (GMT+12), which translates to:

  • 9am Sunday (GMT+12) – Me
  • 4pm Saturday (GMT-5) – Specktre
  • 7am Sunday (GMT+10) – Ranneko
  • 4pm Saturday (GMT-5) – Aldowyn
  • 11pm Saturday (GMT+2) – Jarenth
  • 4pm Saturday (GMT-5) – JPH
  • 3pm Saturday (GMT-6) – Krellen
  • 4pm Saturday (GMT-5) – Desgardes

Let me know if I’ve gotten any time zones wrong, failed to take into account Daylight Savings etc , but that’s probably the most reasonable set of times I can come up with. It’s still pushing it a bit, but we’ve got people right across the board here.

So let me know corrections, suggestions or questions in the comments.

Edit x2: Looks like time slot #2 won, it’s not perfect so we’ll probably have the meeting at least using those times.

Categories: Mechanics, News

Setting: Starships

September 23, 2012 4 comments

When space is involved, there will always be starships – that is a fact of space fantasy. In Arcanauts, starships are a lot like people – simple boats won’t cut it in this kind of environment.

Hardware

Starships come in all shapes and sizes from tiny Pixie Mayflies to massive Draconic Leviathans and anywhere in between. They universally include life support systems, power cores and communications facilities. Often they also include medical facilities, resting and dining areas, projectile weaponry and storage space. More rarely, ships can hold docking bays for other ships, dungeons (both in the historical and traditional sense), hidden compartments,  or almost anything else a being decides to put into space.

At the centre of a starship is its power core – a central battery that determines its capabilities and acts as its heart, brain and soul all rolled into one. These cores come in a few different flavors with their own strengths and weaknesses, and by and large determine the ship’s capabilities. These cores power a variety of simple rituals programmed into them by their creators, and allowing them basic functionality. All decently sized power cores are capable of FTL travel and synthesizing enough food and breathable air for the crew for example, but specialized cores maybe able to render the ship invisible or teleport it short distances. Due to their importance, these cores are often kept in the most heavily armored areas of the ship, and make extremely valuable targets for space pirates.

Anyways, here are the different types of engine you’re most likely to encounter:

Arcane Battery

An Arcane Battery is a large, crystalline structure that stores massive amounts of magical energy. It tends to be favoured for its versatility – an Arcane Battery can run most ships without a lot of trouble, and is the most common kind of Power Core you’ll encounter. Arcane Batteries draw power from cosmic leylines – massive intangible veins of pure magic that arc their way through the stars. The Leylines are often referred to as the “Grand Roads” and are by and large the best way to navigate when one wants to avoid Wyrmweb. This means that your ship will have to rest every so often in proximity to a Leyline in order to refuel, but beware – you aren’t the only ones travelling on the Grand Roads.

Thaumaturgical Capacitor

A Thaumaturgical Capacitor is a dense metal sculpture folded in on itself and inscribed with the prayers of those who use it. It acts as a powerful divine focus, allowing religious travellers to plot a course either at the mercy of the Gods, or through amplified divination spells. Thatumaturgical Capacitors are famed for their powerful shielding effects, though the often lack compatibility with most conventional weapons systems. They draw power from the prayers of their inhabitants, often doubling as an on-board shrine to whoever the crew’s chosen deity is. But beware  falling out of favour with the god who powers your ship can make for an “interesting” Odyssey.

Psionic Nexus

A Psionic Nexus is an artificial consciousness bound to the ship, controlling it as though it were its own body. It communicates intelligently to the crew, acting on its interpretation of their orders, provided they stay on good terms with it. Psionic Nexi tend to result in highly agile ships, but require experience and to be treated as another member of the crew if its pilot wants to get the most out of it. It absorbs power from the conscious minds of those around it while they rest, often manifesting this process as a collective dream that crew members take part in. In cases where this proves insufficient – say, after periods of intense travel or activity, these cores will often require more conventional refueling processes. Psionic Nexi tend to specialize in different areas depending on their personality, but most respond well to enhanced mobility software and enjoy the sensation of flight.

Primal Heart

A Primal Heart is a living, breathing organism that draws on the living power of nature to operate a ship. It absorbs power from the primal cosmic forces of the universe, siphoning energy from the stars around it. Primal Hearts lack any true sentience, but instead possess an empathic bond to the crew, feeling the raw emotions of everyone aboard. At the same time, the crew feel its emotions, remaining calm as long as it does, and becoming agitated if it feels uncomfortable. Nonetheless travelers often report that ships with primal hearts make for exceedingly relaxing voyages.  Primal Hearts tend to be highly compatible with conventional weaponry and their affinity for cosmic forces make them particularly good sensor platforms.

Other Cores and Regional Variants

While theoretically there are other ways to convert magical power into physical effects, and scientific efforts have made major strides in the harnessing of Dark Energy, such custom devices are either extremely rare or unreliable to the point they cannot or are not sold on an open market. Most power cores are variations on those themes, though different regions produce different ship designs and core specifications. Dwarven cores for example tend to be exceedingly reliable, while draconborn cores often sacrifice stability for power. Shardmind Nexi tend to be logical and emotionally consistant, whereas Eladrin Primal Hearts are often as capricious as their makers.

Mechanically this means Starships use the same six abilities as you do, modified by the kind of engine and the design of the ship. STR determines engine power, CON determines hull strength, DEX determines agility, INT determines hardware and software versatility, WIS determines sensor and remote communication capabilities, while CHA affects how the ship looks and in some cases acts.

Software

As stated earlier, power cores are responsible for powering pre-programmed spells and rituals that perform tasks ranging from the simple operation of the ship to shields, sensors and weaponry. The functions an individual core is capable of are determined by built in subroutines (or as people call them, skills) as well as unique hardware capabilities (feats) and of course, the magical effects it has learned (spells/rituals). The cores are mostly self sustaining, but tend to require semi-regular maintenance to ensure their capabilities remain in peak condition.  Starships can generally do anything an adventurer is capable of, provided the right software packages and custom hardware, though obviously through different mechanisms.

For example – recording software (History) can be used to memorize star charts, area data and take recordings. Telepathic warfare suites (Bluff)  can then be used to feed false data to enemy sensors, or they can simply be avoided via cloaking systems (Stealth).  Often the only limits are that of the artificers and mages designing them, as they tend to have significant amounts of magical power to work with, and in some cases, sentient operating systems to make sure their projects are working properly.

In the Game

Ship to ship combat will be a thing, and characters will gain experience from engaging in it. Ships generally don’t get experience, unless they’re Psionic Nexi or Primal Hearts, and upgrades, including level ups usually have to be purchased from shipyards. Instead of armour, they have different hull plating, and they almost exclusively use spells or adapted ranged weapons in combat. Default loadouts will resemble actual classes so feel free to discuss amongst yourselves the kind of ship you’d like to use. No guarantees, but I am curious.

Categories: Setting

Progress: What Has to be Done

September 11, 2012 8 comments

So here’s what needs to happen before this thing can run.

  1. I need the character sheets – I have 4/6. This is the most important part.
  2. I would appreciate theme music, because your alternative is singing.
  3. We need to organize a group chat (using Roll20) and figure out the character’s relationship to each other, and to the major players. The major players are the New Vegas style reputation system. There is at least one major player you can’t know of at this point because [SPOILERS], but the others are fair game.
  4. We need to know when we can meet for this.
  5. Virtual tabletops use static images called pogs to represent characters, you’ll need some of those and I can probably draw them, but I don’t know what will need drawing.

When that’s done I’m ready when you guys are. Until then I’ll keep posting some lore as it comes to me. Maybe something about the logistics of colonization?

Any questions?  Anywhere you’re interested in going? This is the final preparation phase because I want to get this done as soon as possible.

Might be a good idea to try posting times in GMT because as a non-American I get really confused when people say “Pacific time”, but I live on an island in the Pacific and that’s totally not the time here.

New Zealand is GMT+12 for reference. I’m hoping I’m the most difficult one to account for (I usually am) because I can handle that.

Also

Note that the party currently consists of:

  • Julie Greenleaf – A Halfling Rogue (JPH) [No Character Sheet]
  • Cassie Cloudclimber – A Human Artificer (Krellen)
  • Zasahl Melandro – A Dragonborn Cleric (Jarenth) [background incomplete on the character sheet]
  • Crias Syld – A Gensai Warden (Desgardes)
  • Aladraian – An Eladrin Psion (Aldowyn)
  • Knostril – A Dwarven Fighter (TheSpecktre) [No character sheet or background.]
Categories: News

Setting: The Emerald Council

September 11, 2012 4 comments

In the previous post I mentioned the Emerald council – the ruling body of Wyrmweb Station.

The Emerald council was originally formed from the 13 dragon lords and headed by the now deceased Yarluth, who called herself the Celestial Fire. At her right hand sat Shahrukh, the Nebula Queen – her lover and and matriarch of the green dragons. They weren’t called that at the time – having taken their titles after the conquest of Wyrmweb, so in Yarluth’s case she was never called that while alive.

Anyway, the dragons fought the shardminds and the Emerald council opened its ranks as a peace offering, forming essentially a dual-government, lording over the galactic travel hub. As of right now, the council holds 30 seats including representatives from the major worlds and exceptional individuals who the dragons see value in. Dragons are prideful and greedy, but intelligent enough to know it is easier to gain the trust of an ally than attempt to conquer them and their planet so soon after a war, so while the majority of seats on the council are draconic, the other representatives are treated with fairness. At least, as much fairness as dragons are willing to give, which would be a lot less had the council not included powerful archmages and warlords who can and do “negotiate” right back.

The result is that the council is effectively the seat of galactic power, holding absolute dominion over legitimate trade routes, and including representatives from most of the civilized galaxy. Their jurisdiction, while focused on Wyrmweb is essentially limited only to their influence – with no concrete borders to speak of, all that determines their power in the remote sections of the galaxy is how many enforcers are stationed there. And enforcing for a group of not only the most powerful, but the richest beings in the galaxy is an appealing prospect when over half the council doesn’t care how you do your job.

That said, it is not without its enemies – The Wild Man being the chief among them. His insurgents are a constant thorn in the council’s side, but so far they have yet to gain any real ground. Additionally, those claiming to work for the Huntsman often attempt to undermine the Council’s plans. The fact that those two options aren’t particularly pleasant for more virtuous would-be revolutionaries means that the seat of their power is essentially unshakable. Of course, should a more charismatic leader arise, that could well change. The real threat for them is, often council members will actively employ any forces at their disposal to undermine any initiatives they didn’t approve. Keeping plausible deniability means that mercenaries and adventurers are often used – the untrustworthy types whose word under torture can’t be verified. Of course, while the “good” council members deny such accusations, the rumors in ports and taverns say otherwise.

Categories: Setting

Setting: The Icons

September 10, 2012 9 comments

EDIT: I’ve updated the biographies of some of the icons with the way I currently view them. They were pretty simple when I first wrote them, but have been further refined as I explored their role in the galaxy, and what each one represents. It’s mostly minor stuff, but hopefully they should be a bit more interesting than before.

~~~

I’ve finished working on an assignment for a bit so here’s an extra-large update on who’s who in Arcanauts to make up for it.

High fantasy is almost inherently about distinct kingdoms of unique races who rarely intermingle except when adventuring. In Arcanauts, they don’t really have a choice. There are still kings and emperors, but if I had to give you a list of the most powerful forces in the galaxy, it would also involve organizations and guilds. So who is running the place? Well by and large existing empires on the various homeworlds still exist, but they lack the strength and scale of a true galactic organisation, often forming alliances to attain a more solid foothold. This is not without exception, however.

Even so, the ones that hold the real power are the Icons. The 13 most powerful mortals in the galaxy.

[Each occupies a transition between the icon roles in 13th Age – though which they started out as, and how they’ve changed is for you to discover.]

The Psiontist

Grayson Faraday is the name of an eccentric Eladrin inventor and arch-psion. In his three centuries alive he has contributed more than any other individual towards the technological progress of the galactic races, so it’s no surprise he’s gained some popularity. The Faraday Corps are an intergalactic association of psionics (and a few exceptional others) dedicated to the technological advancement of technology and the acceleration of civilization. They use their vast mental powers to solve scientific and engineering problems , and while all follow Grayson’s teachings, very few have ever interacted with him for any real length of time. The Corps has expended to include cosmic artificers and merchants who use a vast financial empire to manufacture complex techno-arcane devices. They generally get along well with most people, but being blacklisted by the corps is about the fastest way to find yourself cut off from the rest of the universe with no hope of reconciliation. Grayson recently went missing, his seat on the Emerald council empty an even his apprentices unable to contact him.

The Fey Queen

The planet known as Feywilde is a dangerous place due to the inscrutable and capricious intelligence pervading its life forms and warping their flesh even as it jealously ensnares their souls. Oona is what the entity calls itself – a truly ancient genius loci whose primal tendrils have shaped an entire planet’s ecosystem for millennia or possibly longer. While unable to leave the planet, Oona’s words are hyponotic to fey creatures, and her dryads represent her on the Emerald Council.  Oona is not without a softer side however and rewards her servants well, engendering a following even outside the creatures she claims dominion over.

The World Builder

Lord Ceylon Tuatha is the current co-owner of planetary colonization supergiant, Whetstone-Tuatha. The heir to the company’s founder, Sylvan Tuatha, Ceylon is an unimaginably wealthy philanthropist, using his fortune for the benefit of colonists everywhere. On the outskirts of civilization, he is the only power with any real sway, as enforced by his druidic order which has grown exponentially since its relatively humble beginnings. Ceylon however remains a controversial figure, and can often be seen leveraging his favour for political power, though his supporters deny it with fanatical devotion. He, like many of the other names you’ll see here sits on the Emerald council – the seat of draconic power, which is open to a few exceptional individuals the dragons consider to be assets to their cause.

The Matriarch Wyrm

Shahrukh, the Nebula Queen is the draconic matriarch at the head of the Emerald Council, and was Yarluth’s second in command and rumoured lover while she lived. Powerful and ambitious beyond her nature as a green dragon, Shahrukh is often seen as the true power behind not only Wyrmweb, but the cult of Yarluth. While her enforcers patrol the twisted streets of Wyrmweb, her devotees revere her husband as the incarnation of Tiamat – god of conquest, though many whisper that he may have been something else entirely. Her position offers her more power than perhaps any dragon ever had, though her decisions are never in opposition to her council. Rarely seen outside of religious ceremony, little is know about her except that she is responsible for the way Wyrmweb exists today, for better or for worse.

The Planet King

The enlightenment and the ensuing space race resulted in the home planet of civilization being abandoned in droves, more and more as races discovered their ancient homeworlds. The dwarves, however were content to remain, claiming that the rock and stone that their ancestral halls lay within was home enough. To that end, they renamed Nasca “The Motherrock”, and declared that if they had a true home, it was long since lost to them. Furious debate from humans who considered the planet theirs was quelled when Thornstar Earthroot forged a strategic alliance with the dragons, earning them representation on the Council. Since then, galactic civilization has always considered The Motherrock to be property of the dwarf lords, who are currently represented by his son, Briganan, whose ruthless leadership and peerless ambition decimated the drow armies.

The Huntsman

Everything about the Huntsman is shrouded in mystery and contradiction. Some say he was there from the beginning – a spymaster, or an assassin or even a noble responsible for leading the charge from the Underdark, attempting to wrest control of Nasca from the Dwarves, before being beaten back by Briganan. Despite their moderate success in being able to claim the vast majority of the now-abandoned surface, their leadership felt that it was insufficient – that their true victory had escaped them into space. Shortly after, the vast majority took to the stars, cutting a bloody swathe through all who tried to stop them, before vanishing into deep space. Though their physical presence was erased, there was one who stayed behind. The Huntsman’s title lived on as a boogeyman – some claiming he embodied the seething, xenophobic rage of the drow and could not bear to see the surface-dwellers in peace. Others, suggest he was disillusioned or even exiled from the drow Matriarchy,  unwilling to lie hidden amongst the infinite shadows, always watching, waiting to strike out at galactic civilization the way he fought on the Motherrock. Whatever the case, whether he be killer or thief or exile, his influence is undeniable. Thieves, con men and covert operatives have been recorded as claiming to do his will, while priceless treasures have vanished and best laid plans have been unravelled, each pointing back to a mysterious drow, the true lord of the galactic underworld.

The Astrosage

Myddea Luminastra is the current head of the galactic order of Astronomy – the academic body whose research is what enables space flight to be feasible. While she was once slated to be the high priestess of Correllon, her inability to wield divine magic saw her expelled from her order. A chance encounter with the Psiontist saw her realise a staggering wellspring of arcane power, suggesting maybe the god of magic favoured her after all. Now an arch-mage in her own right, the deva considers herself and her students to be the shepards of the age of cosmic enlightenment, studying the stars and unraveling the mysteries of the universe. Additionally noted for her interest in politics, Myddea was among the first non-dragons to sit on the Emerald council, where she acts as a voice of reason, and scientific advisor. Though she lacks any real political influence over the people of Wyrmweb, or even interest in it, the results of her order, and her spells are said to hold the fabric of the galaxy together.

The Blood Emperor

The man known only as the Blood Emperor is a masked tyrant whose ambition and cruelty are said to match the dragons themselves.  While most planets keep tyrants in check through valiant adventurers, there were no such people around when he rose to power. The Emperor is the ruler of an entire solar system now, and is feared among the free people of the galaxy. However, he sits on the Emerald Council, and is favored by the dragons for reasons undisclosed. All that is known of him is the reason behind his title – at some point, the empire he was once a part of was destroyed. Not through military conquest, but plague and famine – entire worlds tore themselves apart until the emperor was the only one left, and the prime suspect – standing amid the seas of corpses strewn between dead worlds. He is said to have called upon an unfathomable evil, corrupting the very sun that once gave the system life, that it might now give undeath. Soon, his domain had been rebuilt anew, stitched together from the blood and bones of his fallen brethren, now resurrected as his eternal thralls.

The Shard Scion

Quartorzi Attice is the chief artificer of the shardminds – a mute , yet eminently respected woman, Quartorzi is responsible for the treaty allowing the dragons domain over Wyrmweb. It is evident she had some further involvement in its creation, but she has never been seen in public, let alone interviewed. She holds the only shardmind seat on the Emerald Council, her peers having refused to sit with her as it was founded. All that is known is that the shardminds of the station revere her, and her leadership is directly responsible for the uneasy peace kept on the station. Her agenda and reason for building Wyrmweb were never revealed, but she has a knack for knowing things she shouldn’t, and seeing things she couldn’t possibly have seen.

The Enlightened One

The Enlightened One is the high cleric of Ioun – the god of knowledge – and is rumored to be the only one who truly understands what is happening to the gods. He holds a consulting position on the Council, though he has never set foot on Wyrmweb, and spends his days in the massive Warforged archive he designed – a mind-bogglingly complex library rumoured to be capable of storing the imprinted consciousness of a suitable vessel – in this case, the entire warforged race. His life’s work has been dedicated to the preservation and collection of the knowledge of the dead, however contemporary scholars insist he cannot possibly have achieved his goal. Regardless his unique relationship with the warforged and deep understanding of the universe cannot be denied, and he holds a position of unspoken authority over all the churches as a liason to the gods. This general position and his reclusive nature have resulted in severe controversy amongst the followers of Ioun, who feel sidelined in favour of his personal projects.

The Monarchs

Humankind has always been certain of its place as essentially the dominant species in civilization, but the advent of space travel has found that status threatened. Regardless, the kingdoms of men endure, with under King Darvill and his wife, Queen Amelia. The two monarchs live on a terraformed moon orbiting the Motherrock, neither in exile, nor fully home, at the seat of human power in the galaxy. Though they lack a seat on the Emerald council, the other races tend to look to humans for guidance, as the once most numerous and prosperous species adapts to a galaxy in which neither of those things are really true. Through this setback, human ingenuity and the adaption of technology has allowed them to keep pace with the more fortunate races, and their stalwart determination to regain their lost power has spurred humanity on with an energy few other races can match.

The Wild Man

The Wild man is an anarchist – deemed an unpredictable madman, a warlord and a demon worshipper by his enemies, and a revolutionary by his followers. Despite his name, the wild man tends to be clever and well spoken, with only his mismatched eyes giving a hint to his true nature – he tactically dismantles order wherever he finds it, eroding the power structures of civilization in the name of equality and anarchy. His methods often involve driving authorities to madness, and taking extraordinary personal risks to achieve his goals. He opposes the Emerald council vehemently, a stance that has earned him a surprising amount of favor among those who distrust the dragons and their “thralls”.

The Revolutionary

There’s another player in this game. Someone with more influence than anyone knows. Someone born of the machinations of the Emerald council, and seeks their undoing, but holds no allegiance to any of the other icons. Someone who is the subject of rumours and tall tales alike – if there are any who know more than that person’s goal, they’re not talking about it.

Categories: Setting