Wednesday, March 14, 2018

CAS MAREL - Mareldryn Castle, Home of Queen Freydis Ulsfdrottnir

Overview

A magnificent royal castle perched on a rock on the coast of south Saerad. A town sprang up nearby, called Ton Marel, or Mareldryn Town. Has extensive port facilities and is one of the three major harbours for the Saeradic Fleet.

The community in the fortress is divided between military and elite, with few civilians. The military comprises of 120 x Type 6 Super Heavy Cavalry (The Knights of Cal Marad) serving as the Queen’s travelling guard, overseen by Major Vil Aradah; and 400 x Type 6 Heavy Infantry under Major Gulyn Mavannin. These are the largest body of inhabitants by far. Then there’s Freydis’ personal levy, The Twin Star troop, 20 x Medium cavalry, 80 heavy infantry and 10 elven longbowmen, Captains Dirrin and Dorrin (The castle’s creepy twins!)

The elite group consists of ‘The Knights of the Silver Wolf’ ; a new order of higher levels determined to guide and guard the realm. As the land heals and people once fragmented into small isolated pockets of resistance meet together once more after hundreds of years apart, characters of importance will be no doubt meeting each other for the first time. Trade is slowly arriving from Everien (the elves of the west, Ulfannor) and the dwarves of Gulnaven (Goldfist). Only time and circulation can heal the society.

There is a growing assemblage of professionals at the castle, as projects are both planned and already underway. The castle is looking for staff, castellans, chatelaines, masons, carpenters, engineers, the whole lot. Project one is the building of wooden and later stone jetties to create a castle port linking Heimstead to the outside world. Project two is the building of ships for trade and supply of food. But two ships work the sea for the castle’s food at the moment. Freydis is marking out farms-steads all along the road leading to the city, disused land to be turned to grain and dairy for the castle upkeep. The foundations for a number of granaries are being lain at this very moment.

There’s no community outside the castle walls. There are old village ruins in a dell some mile and half away but that community died out centuries ago. Only one cottage exists outside the castle walls, some half mile away from the gates, that belonging to Hamarin Taroc, an elite ranger who is trying to settle down after a life of hardship in the wilds. He was known as “Giant slayer” in his better years.

About 10 miles north is the old city of Heimstead, set in a shallow vale of fertile grassland.

Heimstead is about 25,000 population and exists on dairy farming and arable, with the whole economy being insular and self-supporting. However, this closed economy needed frequent injections of raw cash in the form of silver coinage from the mines of Castle Dracolidius. The castle Dracolidius was owned by the city council which corrupted and fled when the invasion of the giants came about. Freydis and her group slew the giants in the high halls and rescued the city, but a day before the castle Dracolidius fell to them and the slaves freed. It is about 10 miles from Heimstead to Dracolidius.

Control of the land is divided. The heartlands of Oakhaven (The haarg) sit at the heart of the old nation and its fall into darkness divided the outer lands from each other. All creeds became intent purely on survival. The nation was once under the Kings of Saerad, situated at Brynjaheim hall, on a scarp above Heimstead. The old halls have become twisted with age and magic battles, but they remain operational and a house for the cities accumulated treasures. The city is governed by a new council overseen by Bamryn Hend, an old lady mayor. In the era of the undead, the land divided along regional and racial lines, with the Oakhaven peoples taken completely out the picture. Locked behind a stone wall and passes choked with undead, they have only seen the occasional new face of an adventurer once or twice a month, usually these have been chased and killed by the evil forces that were patrolling the roads.

Cas Marel's First Appearence


Taken from Book III of the Three Tattered Tomes, "Ulfsdrottnir".

Wet stones gleamed around the great rock. White mist created a vignette around the group, they stood about the high boulder in wonder of the carved etchings there sprawled. The stone spur beneath them jutted out into the cool sea, the topside covered in dancing ferns and wiry bramble; the lower reaches lost in a carpet of sand and Marram. Freydis and her friends had gathered to investigate the stone. There on the very top, in a crease where moss nestled, Freydis crouched and scraped. There below the loosened green, a forgotten bore existed. Syl ascended the huge boulder and with a quick word and pointing of her hennaed hand, the dirt blocking the hole erupted skywards and dispersed into nothing. Syl peered into the hole. “Time for the staff,” she advised, standing back as the staff bearer clambered up.

A short girl in a ragged green robe, barefoot and unkempt of hair, passed Freydis the staff. It was made from a perfect column of opalescent white marble, carved at both ends with intricate knotwork. The girl stared at Freydis with her deep brown eyes, puzzling the meaning of this silvered warrior with ringlets that danced like faeries in the breeze. The mist was hastening.

Freydis looked down to the rippled sea and noted the border twixt the seen and where whiteness ruled, and that the mist was not encroaching from the cold ocean but spiraling in a wide circle some hundred yards thither. They were gathered roughly at the axis.“The land senses us,” said Mirel, feeling the world and all within through her sandy feet. “Here it goes. No sense in standing around here,” announced Freydis, sliding the rod into place. There was a gentle vibration in the air and the rock. Then came a breeze bringing a bank of tumbling mist towards them, collapsing from the border of the eye, where now a huge wall of white stone stood and beyond that, a broad tower rising high beyond and a whole enormous castle seated on the rock cliffs overlooking the sea. Atop it was witch-hat roof, where gulls immediately perched and where bare masts awaited a life of flags. Windows filled with pretty glass appeared, then great gated doors rendered on the lower wall afore them, a stern bronze, green with age.

“It’s beautiful. And big. What is it called?” Freydis asked Mirel. No answer came from the astonished mouths, and minutes passed as all stood like stone, as if some mirage had afflicted them.

Much later, Mirel shrugged and her eyes refocused – she began to walk over to it with no words to explain what she could see. She gestured all to follow.“Mareldryn is what the ancients called it. It’s from a past lost to all but us Witches. Way before the destruction wrought by the Thrones when Feylan was one with Saerad,” explained Syl.
Freydis and Syl stood there on the great slick stone and viewed the enchanted rendering of the castle. It became more solid and detailed as they watched. After a few minutes, as Mirel was nearing the great gates of Mareldryn, they both climbed down and got to their mounts. They followed to the gates, across a natural stone bridge that linked the promontory with the headland, the companions with them, all dumb with wonderment. And there they stood, dwarfed by the ancient ingress. As they clanged their arrival with a stern mace, Freydis could not but imagine that whatever lived here in those ancient days as sizable. Bigger than they by at least half. The companions watched the gates open with a thud of completion. There inside was a passage through a gatehouse into a courtyard, where formations of polished knights stood inert, their two commanders proudly in-front of them, watchful and awaiting orders from within blazing helms.

Pencarreg Llyr, Auspice of Folarah, examined the ancient War Crown of Saerad, turning it around to catch the sunlight in its five great gems. The bronze ring seemed somehow malleable, as if it would work itself to seat correctly upon any ennobled brow. There on the front, a square emerald fused with fey-light cast an aura of irrepressible elan vital, each side of it, a great ocean pearl, perfect and reflective. Then, lastly, on the left and right of the crown, a deep red ruby, richer than the cloud-cast glow of any rising sun. The grassy mound of Far Flung was a mile from the farm, an ancient place with a history that went back beyond even the memory of Syl. The stone Freydis sat upon was an eroded survey marker that had been draped over with her torn cloak. Her shield had been placed at the side of the stone. Crowds surrounded the mound.
Llyr set the crown down on Freydis’ head, and it shaped to her form; she momentarily shuddered as the crown infused power into her mind. “By the skies, forests and seas, by the mountains and lakes, and by the peoples of Saerad, I declare you Queen Freydis.”
“I don’t feel different,” she whispered.
Llyr strode around the throne and looked out over the amassed warriors. The silence was broad and deep, the respect that hovered there reached out and embraced all. And so Freydis, daughter of a woodsman, a shieldmaiden of the Lost Forest, became elevated by her own great deed and majesty. And encased in the armour of the Ulfalf, it began, afore the eyes of all assembled, to attain iridescence that betrayed the goodness of the soul it embraced.

Updated Floorplans
























Castle Dracolidius


Castle Dracolidius
By Odysseus G. Osborne

Posted for K.

Suggested chamber titles/uses

Ground Level

1 - Fixed bridge
2 - Muddy moat
3 - Covered offloading area. Gate has small door and eyeballing hatch.
4 - Latrine (Empies via pipe to moat!)
5 - Recreational area, covered by roof - stone benches
6 - Horse tether area, straw all over, covered by roof.
7 - Well, worn stone steps to it, bucket on winder.
8 - Porch to the keep, carved arch and doors of bronze.
9 - Courtyard. Lords carriage parked here perhaps.
10 - Weapons store, halberds, spears etc.
11 - Outdoor shrine area, for guards use.
12 - Hall with dome. Ornamental and plush.
13 - Alcove with statue.
14 - Grand ornamental staircase to first level.
15 - Stone staircase, functional, to basement.
16 - Lords records and study. Advisers annex.
17 - Dumb waiter to kitchen/Great Hall (basement level)
18 - Secret chamber - Sage has access however.
Green Room - A reception parlour whose livery is green.
Red Room - Functions as the Lords war room. Tabletop battles!
Great Hall - Feasting hall with huge fireplace and extends into library above.
Throne Hall - For formal announcements and receptions of delegates.

Basement Level

34 - Functional stone hall, vaulted. Crate and barrels perhaps.
35 - Secure storage room for wine and ale.
36 - Chilled store (magically enhanced) for meat and butter etc.
37 - Semi-precious Treasury Vault.
Treasury - Secret, behind large wooden panel. Higher treasures in here.
Servants Billet - wooden bunks, rough woolen blankets. Lanterns and clothes hanging around.
Granary - Castles grain and cheese store. It's cool and dry here and illusionary cats prowl here.
Kitchen - Three large ovens on the north wall for roasting/baking etc. Cooks work area.
Dungeon - Ten cells in a functional place. It's dark and claustrophobic but not filthy.
Metal Store - The smithy is supplied by a vast amount of iron bars, sheets and other metals.
Well - This wellshaft links to the drawing point above in the courtyard. This area is full of sealed  
          urns with water preserved and cool here for emergency use.
Forge - A typical smithy. This smithy does blacksmiths work, weaponsmithy and armourer. The
          furnace has a chimnet that goes up to the roof.

First level

19 - Sergeant of the Guard's personal chamber.
20 - Watch room. Guards watch the approach from here. Give them crossbows.
21 - Watch room. Guards watch here but there's a table and chairs with cards, dice etc.
22 - Sergeants Watch and window seat. The open window allows the sergeant to hail visitors.
23 - Guest Room - small but plush.
24 - Guest Room - small but plush.
25 - Castellan's Chamber.
26 - Champion's Chamber.
27 - Library. The rectangular area is a drop into the Great Hall below.
28 - Balcony overlooking courtyard.
29 - Hallway with two elite guards.
30 - Lord's Chamber
31 - Lady's Chamber
32 - Extra-dimensional emergency chamber (Not on floorplans!)
33 - Secret scrolls and valuable books chamber (sage has access).
Chapel - Family private chapel with large statue and marble walls, lots of stained glass.
Sage's Room - The librarian, wizard and record keeper works and lives here. Lots of papers.
Library - lots of mundane old books, on all sorts of subjects. A bit dusty. Very nice place.
Officers Hall - An area where the Officers and other higher levels meet casually and relax.
Guard Billet - here the castle troops live and eat, polish their armour and sleep. Crowded place.

Roof level

a to l - These are griffon stables where one griffon is lodged. They are all used by higher levels.
Harness Store - All the saddles and bridles are kept here. Also lances for use on rides.
Dove cote - The sage uses pigeons to send messages all over the region. Poop. Lots of it.
Drum Tower - The lords vicar gets on the huge drums up here and lets everyone know what will happen to their sleep if they don't come to worship at the outdoor shrine. Can be heard for miles. Make the cleric a chunky bearded bruiser who uses his twin maces as drumsticks. :-)
Paddock - Here the griffons are saddled, cared for in turn, where they land and take off.

General Advice
I think this place is nice enough to go anywhere, it does look clean and sweet. An established area would be great, though I do feel that it is better placed on an island where irregular traffic arrives by a thin, water-washed causeway. The people who have levels here would get a griffon ride to the nearest town.

Suggested (Fun) characters for this castle:

Lord Dracolidius - Warrior Type, Elite. Jealous psychotic killer. Beady eyes. He is always suspicious of everyone but would never harm guests, unless of course, they look suspicious.
Lady Dranyana -  Warrior/Wizard Type. Sexy lady with long hair and great body. Any males of high comliness may find themselves the object of her attention, and hence, her jealous husband too. Ouch.
Sage Bumble - Wizard type. An old guy, comes active at night and sneaks about the castle. Hangs around peoples doors listening but his constant farting always gives him away.
Pastor Dokken - War cleric type, big maces. Big beard. Cuddly psychopath type. Can be found drumming the huge signalling drums in the tower on holy days. Popular guy.
Sergeant Ripper - Hard man, lots of shouting and marching about. Bastardsword with cont light. Claims it's a vorpal, but it is not. It's ordinary, but no one can convince him otherwise.
Stable Girl Helly - Low level theif type who lifts peoples coins while helping them mount/dismount. The lord Dracolidius knows about this and doesn't punish her as he's her father. LOL.
Castellan Roggan - A low level cleric employed to do all the paperwork. Boring guy. But rich. Drones and hangs around the party droning.
Master Crunch - An elite, noble paladin champion bound to the house Dracolidius by a lineage clash. He does all the dueling and quests that keep the crazy Baron and his family out of trouble. He hates his position but does it as his great grandfather sealed a covenant that cannot be broken. Crunch trains all the guards and acts as chamberlain here. A nice guy but sad in heart.
Stinkerbell - A fat cat that prowls the castle yowling and causing false guard alerts by playing with the alarm bell pull.



Monday, October 30, 2017

Welsh Hook - Something like this


The Welsh Hook looked something like this. It was a feared weapon, used for hooking cavalry from their horses and then as a tin opener. The fixing point would have been a tube that sat on the end of the shaft, which wood it was I don't know (ash?) and it's length I'd suspect from 5ft to 7ft. They were pruning hooks, so length might have been longer.

Friday, September 29, 2017

Kalarun Castle - Glofeyne


© Copyright O.G.Osborne 2016



Monday, September 18, 2017

Ton Marel - Capital of Saerad


Drawn in AutoCAD and screen-dumped (ok res for this display) I'm in process of vectoring up all the cities that exist in my campaign world. Don't you just wish you were a PC in my game?

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Aegistratan Banner, Shield and Fabric

The Aegistratans are amazon warriors in the northern hemisphere of Glofeyne. Allied with the Ignissian fire sorceress of the Islands, they form half of the mighty Bronzefyre Alliance.


Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Combat At The Hell Cell

The Averaath's combat team investigate the mountain side's strange iron door, leading to a ghastly lab stocked with hideous monsters of brutal power. This happened some time ago via PBEM and involved a friend of mine, Dave as player of Darric. Above is the shield of The Averaath flying galleon.

Enjoy!

Something primordial, something so deeply rooted into the psyche of living things. You wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for millions of ancestors, each other struggled with aches, pains, wounds, diseases...monsters. As this ‘thing’ comes upwards with it’s huge club spinning like a blender, you wonder, stopped in frozen time as the whole world slows down and wonders with you. You threw the hallowed hammer downwards like a thunderbolt, into the shadowed folds of tangled flesh. Somewhere amidst the supernatural roaring there’s a squelch, the hammer reappears in your fist covered in cold gore. Then...like the demi-gods Phobos and Deimos, the thing leaps out the darkness like some invader from hell.

ROUND ONE
Seg One
But Deeria is unfazed by the size, bulk and disgusting form, she’s disciplined to withstand such gut wrenching fear – she steps perfectly and in true time, places a potent zornhau – but...the thing pushes into her with it’s outstretched foot, it has limited range, but catches her in the midriff, breaking the timing and sending her stumbling off with her bastardsword barely in her grasp.

Seg Two
Deeria gets out of the way of any stomping attack, resets and probes again.

Seg Three
Cautiously, Darric advances, aware that the thing has unexpected surges of movement.

Seg Four
The things waves the giant spiked club at Darric, it seems to focus on him for some reason, and as it raises to load it’s attack, Darric pounces in and slams the things wrists [19 dam] in the nach timing. It’s attack is expent and it raises it’s arms for another.

Seg Five
As the thing roars and gesticulates fearsomely, Deeria stages a flyby attack, drawing the bastardsword across it’s forearms, causing substantial goop-squirting for [27 dam].

Seg Six
The creature stretches forth and swipes, Deeria leaps twice over the double zwershau, Darric slides through the defences and commits a left oberhau, knocking the hallowed hammer’s spike into the things chunky chin, exploding it in a shower of decayed flesh and bone. It falls forth in a massive wet thud, it’s rough-cut gem eyes popping free of the sick sockets and rolling on the floor.

Deeria passes a glance at you as if to draw your attention to the dark doorway, where more shadows are moving...more roaring...and another comes out on it’s tail. It came out quicker than expected, but Darric takes opportunity to throw the hallowed hammer. It barely hits yet sends off a chunk of skull [19 dam] and bounces off the steel gate, flying back in a natural rebound arc to your hand as you close in.

END OF ROUND

ROUND TWO

Seg One
Darric and Deeria manouvre for better angles of attack as the thing vascillates to threaten each of you with it’s bulk. The huge bloated, stinking body of the first thing is giving off clouds of fart gas. This is disgusting and both of you make your saves. Volby and Ysidran are about, they have spells held in wait, but what they are you don’t know. It advances, flailing a huge glaive.

Seg Two
The thing seems to be trying huge sweeping zwershau, both Deeria and Darric leap these broad slow moves, getting the timing right for counters.

Seg Three
Darric moves in the nach, slamming the hammer into the things chubby fat knee with a crunch [21 dam]. It twists to focus on Darric and raises the huge glaive, whose shaft is like a loom and whose blade is like a guillotine. Deeria is quick – she flies past dragging the bastardsword deeply through the things bloated gut, a move she almost regrets immediately as gallons of rotting innards sposh out. Everone makes a save and passes, barely.

Seg Four
The thing stumbles around slipping and falling into it’s own entrails with a roar of unnatural energy. It thuds over face down smashing its own face in. Dead.

END OF ROUND

Another fucker…” declares Deeria heading to the steel doors, her blade primed in Vom Tag.
Another one?” Volby cringes. The spellcasters are staying well out the way.

As soon as Darric sees another thing in the archway, he throws the hammer on a collision course. But it moves quickly at Deeria, and the hammer flies down the corridor. It reappears in your hand just seconds later. This third thing has a giant rough-cast axe.

ROUND THREE
Seg One
Deeria manouvers, she’s in Vom tag and she seems to be drawing it away from the conjested area where the footing is very bad.

Seg Two
Then Deeria pounces, after going backwards for a second or two she’s going forth, cutting heavily from the guard in a diagonal hewing for [25 dam] to the things thigh.

Seg Three
She abzugs out of the danger zone, Darric takes advantage of the things focus on Deeria.

Seg Four
Darric launches at the things back, but finds himself unable to strike because of a large slurry of rotting innards tangling around his feet.

Seg Five
Under cover of the shield, Darric dances his feet free of the tentacle like constraints of the monsters guts.

Seg Six
But the thing turns on Darric before he is away, it powers the huge double bit axe down hitting Darric mightily on the shield sending huge shockwaves into his left arm for [21 dam], it slowly retrieves its axe to prime again.

Seg Seven
Moving like lightening, Deeria races and runs up onto a dead thing, and leaps of it, slicing her bastardsword diagonally down across the third things neck, releasing a shower of high pressure green-grey sticky snot. Thing Three tries to repeat it’s successful hewing on Darric but he’s away and the axe falls short, cutting into dead thing one.

Seg Eight
A pillar of roaring flame descends into the thing – it is momentarily lost in the ornage tounges of destruction, the flames clear, the thing appears out of the light and looks...unharmed by it. Though it seems to be oddly out of phase.

Seg Nine
Deeria climbs over the stinking cadaver of thing two, her foot vanishes inside it’s torso with a squelch and she howls with disgust as she falls onto the torso, using her rolling momentum to free her leg. She rolls over and off the thing with a disgusted look all over her.

Seg Ten
Darric and Deeria converge on the strangely constrained third thing, which is acting like time has slowed down for it after the fire bath, they rain a flurry of attacks. The third thing takes a heavy blow and [22hps] but it’s uncertain who dealt the killing blow.

The thing collapses and releases a massive noxious fart.

END OF ROUND – END OF COMBAT

Heavy breathing is the activity of the moment, both Darric and Deeria are struggling for breath after three minutes of extreme exertion, both are soaked with sweat, rotten gore and the dust that has kicked up has stuck to their faces. More unnatural roaring comes from below. Whatever is down there doesn’t seem to have registered your presence.
You might be out of their detection range” comments Volby, moving to inspect the dead things. “I have never seen anything so disgusting in my whole life.”
I’m thinking that, if we had to deal with these things at the same time, we might have suffered somewhat...” suggests Deeria.
Oh look,” declares Ysidran pointing above the archway. “It says The Hell Cell and no wonder.”



Sunday, August 20, 2017

Freaky Shields

Decided to experiment with strange bucket fills for these. I like them but I can't put them into my campaign. Too flash.


Friday, August 11, 2017

Elusenol, Creation Myth

The First Woman, Dogun.

Creation myth for Elusennol, The First World.

Heavily based on Sumerian Mythos and OT Genesis


  So there came the Lady of The Storm across the sun-burned clouds of morning. She moved in a sphere of fizzled spark, a rolling ball of lightning across the charcoal grey sweep; she rolled on wheels of gentle thunder till she hovered on the breeze, undulating over the great ancient arboreal world. Under the cobalt sky that was brightening to azure, she settled there in the part of the forest whose trunks were strongest, where fruit hung in opulence on branches thicker than any other place. There she met the fire dreki, whose metal scarlet eyes gazed from the depths of the shadow. He came from his perch, where he’d been feeding from great fruits. And he approached the Lady of the Storm with pleasant words of greeting.
  “From the clay, make a beast...” she commanded.
And with his noble hands, he formed a beast and he held it to her.
  “Breathe a small breath into it...” he asked. And she did.
The clay beast became alive and it gamboled around and then scampered off into the forest.  And so happened the creation of the beasts. Many clay beings were infused with the breath and they were set off into the great forests. They ate the fruits of the trees of which there were very very many.

  When the beasts of the land were far spread and many, there once more rolled across the skies the Lady of The Storm. The noise of her chariot disturbed the beasts and they ran reckless across the lands, terrified by her. For she was strong and her majesty struck fear into them, for with their breath they knew her and her might, but their flesh and clay were weak. The fire dreki heard the rolling wheels and he showed himself. Soon, The Lady of the Storm rolled close and said to the dreki:
  “Why do these beasts run from me?”
  “This is because they are creatures of the earth,” replied the dreki.
  “Make a beast that will not run from me.”
The dreki agreed and crafted one that stood on its back legs with it’s head half in the sky.
  “This creature will not be of claw and tusk. She will not be like me, but like you. She will have no weapon but will be full of your spark in her head, and have my fire in her heart.”
The Lady of the Storm agreed.

  So the dreki made a smooth woman, from the wood of a great olive tree that the Lady of the Storm had herself sat within as she rested. Smooth and pretty, she was without claw or tusk. He placed a hot coal from his heart within her heart. The dreki made her similar in form to the Lady of the Storm. And then he held up the wooden creation.
  “Breath into this a bigger breath. Make her well, for she will be ours, together.”
And the Lady of the Storm breathed her breath, a big blast, and infused her spark within the head of the creature. And so the woman was set free but she clung to the tree from whence she was made.
  “I am weak. I have no tusk or claw. And no hide with which to cover me. I am certain to die!”
  “You will not die!” said the dreki.
  “Who told you that you were naked?” asked The Lady of the Storm.
  “I saw that I was without armament and armour. I told myself so, from my own mind.”
The dreki and the Lady of the Storm pondered the woman’s response.
  “She has become like us. She perceives what is not easily apparent. Therein is a soul, for the fire scale feeds from
the breath, and in turn the fire regenerates the spark. I will call you Dogun, for you are beautiful like the rose fingered birth of day.”
 “I cannot help her,” said the dreki, “for she is now more like you. And yours. I am of the rock and fire. You are of sky and rain and storm. That which is rock and fire within her is under the power of that which is air and spark.”

  But there were many women who had been made, and they clung to the trees. The lady named them Huldra for they were now shy and hid away. The Lady of the Storm picked up the brightest woman and took her to her favourite place, a mountain top hall where the land met the sky on an island surrounded by warm seas.
  “I will teach you how to live. Weaving, cooking, farming and all crafts of all sorts I teach to you.”
And so the Lady of the Storm taught the woman all the things she needed to live without tusk or claw.

  Then she set the woman down into the fruit filled woodlands of the world again and told her to be free and happy. And The Lady of the Storm pulled two seeds from an olive tree and placed it within the woman, and this grew in her wood belly to be a child, which became the first man. Dogun then taught her son those things that the Lady of the Storm had shown her. And many of the women of the trees learned from Dogun. And her son became the father of womankind, for his many sons and daughters by the women of the trees became the first tribe of men, and Skoglendi was their home that Dogun made for them on the first world. And those that hid still remained Huldra, and they lived within the trees that birthed them.

Monday, August 7, 2017

The Fall of Triorch - Game Notes


The three towns of Triorch are fallen. Undead hordes under the Bone Cloister carried rocks from the mainland and built a causeway, stone by stone, some 4 miles long to connect the island. Eventually, after a year of incessant rock dropping, helped by silt buildups and some necromancer wizardry, the gap closed and the island connected. Some 30,000 undead marched across. A small field battle ensued at the south end of the causeway and the Triorchans were overwhelmed, both Vinn and Danara fleeing southwards to Siric as the undead split and moved to sack the graveyards as a primary target. Boosted by the 5,000 slain from the battlefield, their ever growing numbers quickly stormed Vinn and Danara. The civilian exodus from Siric was almost complete but the remaining armies stayed to fight and keep the walls safe as the refugees left for Saerad.

Combined Saeradic, Siriolan and Exaradac potentiaries have met in war council and mages have assisted the evacuations -- although it seems there's a battle plan that is now initiated. The combined fleets have encircled Triorch Island, and the great elementalist Tyrac with helpers Wandarah, Firetop and many others, have used combinations of spells to cause a whole half mile of causeway to vanish, trapping the undead on the island ready for extreme vermin control by TMK Bomber ships, the regions flying gunships and the guardian dragons of the region. Tyrac's cohorts of stone golems are at the causeway, preventing exit.

The plan is of course based on the inability of the Glofeyne undead to cross salt water. The Bone Cloister has created some very nasty zombies and skeletons for their land wars...each claw strike from the minions demands a save versus a rusting attack on ferrous armour, eroding any armies defences against them. The downside is that these undead cannot swim or walk on the bottom of oceans or lakes, they get flushed away by the tide after the controlling enchantment evaporates.
Using this variant knowledge, the Undead have been trapped on the island and are shortly due for extreme action from the southern nations.

This activity formed a part of the game session 'War Council' on Sunday 6th August 2017 with Shannon's character Freydis as the main protagonist.

Friday, August 4, 2017

Making a simple effective scroll


This took about 5 mins. Scanned a piece of parchment coloured letter sized paper and then took a white eraser in Corel Paint to texture the edges. Or use a white brush. Quick choice for text. Done. Remember to save the foundation jpeg before the text goes on and then you can reuse it!

Campaign Notes - Camp Freydis Monument


The old stone slab pathway swerves up the steep sides of the knoll. At the top is another strange pillar this time capped with a five foot diameter stone sphere etched with ogham runes. This is another investigation for Queen Freydis. If her FNR is to stay there, she has to make sure it is safe. With Syl the witch and a number of friends, she begins her investigation.

Thursday, August 3, 2017

Bronzefyre Alliance - NW Elusenol


This has been a while coming but at last the Sorceress of Ignissia and the Aegissian Women Warriors can be seen on the map. This is in the NW of Elusenol, far NW of Glofeyne.

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Campaign notes: 7/22/2017 - The Pale Tree


Players:  Shannon
DM:  Glaucos
Recorded by: Shannon

Adventuring group: Freydis, Galandraxis, Syl, Janaera Tayne, Firetop, The Queen's Shield (120 heavy cavalry), Durhelwyr and his troops.

Context: The group has just defeated a large contingent of undead at the cliff face by outsmarting them with a Turris Magna command center produced by Durhelwyr.  The group has also decided to bring the wizardess Firetop with them on their journey.  She has no desire to re-join her previous companions, who are busy picking the pockets of the dead.

The adventurers resume their journey and eventually see a red stone castle, Snow Spire, on the side of a steep mountain.  Durhelwyr indicates that he intends to visit it, but that it will be a very grueling ascent and that it’s best to rest the group overnight by camping in a conifer grove and attempting the climb the next morning. Freydis concurs.

A scouting party informs the group that a dwarf has been found alone in the woods. He’s brought back to camp and introduces himself as Gyranax. He’s a cross-dressing vegetarian purveyor of fine goods at rather high prices who traveled to the castle with the intention of responding to an advertisement for delivery of certain goods.  When he arrived, no one would respond at the gate and he eventually left, but not before noticing that there were pikes atop the castle with human heads on them. His cart became bogged down and his mule died.  After going over his story and the goods he has for sale, he’s allowed to stay at the camp overnight. Freydis eventually gives him a war horse and a ring of shooting stars and cantrips in exchange for a clerical scroll of significant power.  

That night, after everyone goes to sleep, Freydis assumes wolf form and travels up the mountain to get a look at the castle.  While there she gets a good feel for the layout of the place and determines that someone is still living there.  She sees no one, but lanterns are burning, there is  strange sulphuric scent in the air, and she hears someone scream in agony as if being tortured.  She quickly makes her way back down the mountain and encounters Sil and the dwarf, who were following her tracks.  She tells them what she found, and they gather the adventuring group together with Durhelwyr and she draws them a schematic for the castle grounds.  Garden areas with trees close to the castle walls provide good possibilities for getting into the place. Questions abound - has the grandmaster in charge of the psionic school at the castle gone mad? Is he among the dead? Has he been taken prisoner?  The group will make their way to the castle at first light and find out.

The next morning the group ascends the mountainside and arrives at the castle, and Durhelwyr decides to create a distraction by knocking at the castle gate while the rest of the group moves around the castle and enters over the wall and through the garden.  He gains admittance to the castle and while he’s having a conversation with the current inhabitants, Freydis and her group listen from behind a closed door as he negotiates with the mysterious Zvarah, the former Countess of Molcra, and her elite bodyguard of 12 Red Guards.   She bluntly offers to sell Durhelwyr the castle and the master with it, claiming that she married the master (Farn) and he violated the terms of their agreement by refusing to teach her psionics.  She’s been keeping him in the dungeon since their falling out, killed his students in supposed ‘self defense’ and wants to sell the castle out from under him in order to raise money to return to Malcra and rebuild.  After a great deal of back and forth about the terms of the selling agreement and questions from Freydis about Zvarah’s motives, Durhelwyr suddenly offers the Red Guard half a million gold pieces to abandon the castle, turn over Farn to the adventuring party and dedicate themselves to the fight against the undead by declaring their allegiance to Freydis.  Surprisingly, Zvarah demurs and agrees.  

Durhelwyr will eventually receive a copy of the agreed-to contract and Freydis will receive a red leather bound ‘good will’ gift from Zvarah - a book of skill at arms that, once learned, will raise Freydis a level as a fighter.  

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Game Report: Castle Snowmayne - 22nd July 2017

The descent from the stone circle is steep and long. The downwards slope makes it easier but soon, the rugged hills, most nothing more than shale heaps from the upper reaches, wave up and down as the trail pushes north west along the edge of the forest. Chuckling rivulets leap over the stones, cold and clear, yet to be tainted by the world.

The trail becomes tough on the wagon horses and they are swapped out every hour. The trail branches occasionally, but Durhelwyr’s scouts take the left, scouring the upper reaches for sign of a castle.
“Snowmayne” a guard reports, pointing to a bare mountain which even the trees seem to avoid. Durhelwyr nods. “It looks true to choice. A place far away where contemplation is easy. There’s nothing up there for anyone. Well, anyone sane.” The guards laugh and the convoy moves on.

Hours later, despite seeing the crowning castle, it’s pale red geometry harsh against the snow white sky and the clouds that hulk above it, the ascent will begin.
“I’d suggest we spare the horses and the guards the turmoil of ascent. It would be better to make a camp here in a sheltered crevasse, take advantage of the trees and the water flows.  With that, Vorgentah asks for his winter saddlebags brought to him and they are fixed over the rear haunches of the bronze death charger.  He is brought a few extra weapons, one of which, held within a carved black ebony scabbard, he hands nonchalantly to Pal Tayne, and she cautiously grasps it, staring at the opulent crossguard and pommel.  “Take care of this, until one finds another suitable” he mentions gently.  Tayne’s eyes are wide and she manages a rare smile. She pulls the gifted great green cloak about her, things might be looking up for her at last.

Freydis, glittering in ancient silver armour with eyes that match the sky and hair that reflects the pale winter sun, she assembles her friends:  Pal Janera Tayne, noble paladin, encased in a shell of impervious armour, her eyes honest and gentle. Syl, Saeradic Witch. Draped in shadowed cloak, hair like a blazing copper fire, eyes green like a cat.  Galandraxia, a bard of legend, elegant, tall and majestic. Fearsome with her bone bow and dark arrows. Lady Firetop, draped in crimson and fire orange, her angular features are like the tangs of fire itself. And Vorgentah, carapaced in ancient metal on a steed of fame, dark bearded and silent, he has just become aware that he is surrounded by beautiful, talented women and a cloud of sweet smelling perfume.  After an initial look of dread as the women passed a saucy joke about with smirks and cackles, he relaxed somewhat, realising that as the only man, he’d always be the object of banter. Just as a woman would be traveling with a team of men.  It was now time for him to be the forgiving one, as women had done for eons. Though, as the squad gathered, it was not lost on the guards that here assembled, was perhaps the most outrageously good looking adventurers that had ever worked together.

Party takes the ascent...

The trail is barely traveled here, but for a few old horse tracks, not much has gone on atop this mountain for weeks. An odd sign perhaps for a castle. As the mountain is climbed, nothing but the odd crow flaps about, telling all in lonely echoes that the mountain belongs to no-one. The last rise is met – as the group round the edge they stare at the dark spires and red walls of the castle. Small signs of habitation are still around. Tiny lanterns burn on the walls and within the great dark glass windows, there near the doors, deep in shadow, are two large lanterns burning brightly, but still, swallowed by the shade. And there, upon the main spire, spears bobbled with severed heads. Something isn’t right.

Note: Snowmayne was renamed by it's new owner. It is now "Demonia".