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The Blood of a King [DnD Next]

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The Blood of a King [DnD Next]

Post by Wallace on Fri Jun 19, 2015 8:24 pm

How does one measure a king? By the longevity of his peace
or the extent of his conquests? The number of lords who fear
his wrath or the number subjects who celebrate his name? His
wisdom in law or his cunning in outsmarting his enemies? The
skill of his sword arm or the straight aim in his eye? The his-
tory of his ancestors or the legacy of his children?
I have been the magus to many who thought themselves fit to
rule. Each one failed in their endeavours through folly in one
way or another just as many times as they succeeded by sheer
luck. I measure a king like I would any other being and few have
impressed me, especially the short-lived humans. My servitude
was never a matter of politics but knowledge and in my own
endeavours I succeeded long before I failed.
My name has changed over the centuries. Ergon the Young I
was when in the first decades of my life, restless and reckless,
I searched for my way in this world. Henall the Eager I was when
a mentor reluctantly accepted responsibility of my tutelage and I
aimed my life at the pursuit of knowledge. Tyon the Wise I was
when a king accepted my sage words as truth. Monoron the Trai-
tor I was when I decided my life was worth more than my king's.
I suppose I will never know what they will call me tomorrow. So
much I have learned over the years that I could save any man
from dying but it is my own death I cannot avoid now. I did see
the black and green uniforms on the castle walls, I did see the boy
flee into the room, I did not see the hand that pulled the bowstring
or the arrow that pierced my neck.
Time froze before my eyes. It was my own instincts that paused
this moment in the chance to save my life. If I could find the an-
swer to my death here I would surely be able to save myself but
I cannot utter the words I need to live. I have searched the inner
library of my mind and found no tome or scroll that would defy my
demise. I have stared out of these eyes as though it were days at
the still scene. A boy not ready to be a king, his ward not ready to
save him, and my apprentice not ready for the world.
I cannot control the portal any longer. As they tumble through, their
destination I do not know. Far away from here it will be safe and in
my dying breath perhaps I will make a last stand as my king was
wont to do. Then, tomorrow, I will be measured and they will call me
Azrahar the Destroyer.





The history:
The reign of Yerrick III of Marland was a time of peace and prosperity following the long reign of his father, Bubert III, and grandfather, Yerrick II. In his name, many a cathedral was erected to the gods and their favour was regarded to shine on the fortuitous king. Stories are told of the boar that killed him. No ordinary boar but a devil of a beast with tusks that could bring a horse down. It is said Yerrick's final arrow hit the boar in the eye and that it died in the woods after running off but not before butting the king to the ground and mauling him where he lay.
The king had only one child and she had been wed to the sixth son of Andulad, King of Zorzia across the Long Sea. She was to set sail with her husband and rule but never arrived. This left Marland in a state of disarray with nobles vying for political power and arguing about birthrights and lineages. Those who claimed the closest lineages were also most accused of the falsehood of their genealogy chart.
Years went by in which Marr brothers were pitched in battle, politics and other cruelties. It was Terram, king of niehgbouring Luria who stepped in with the offer to settle the debate. Luria's Century of War was at an end and King Terram was looking to settle the peace in neighbouring nations. All nobles agreed to the fair and just judgment of Terram.
Council was held for fifty days at Redguard Castle in Marland's capital of Farburh during which Terram held discussion and oversaw the comparison of genealogy charts. On the fiftieth day, Terram had narrowed the two closest candidates down. The first was Mordrew of the house of Rhidan, seventh Baron of Ulchester, third Baron of Linburh, legitimized as the grandchild of Bubert III's half-brother. The other claimant was Lobard the Brick of the house de Bryc, ninth Baron of Bryc, legitimized as the grandchild of Yerrick II's daughter.
At the Grand Cathedral to Omnitus, King Terram ruled in favor Mordrew. Immediately Lobard the Brick accused Mordrew of swearing fealty to the foreign king having denied a similar pledge to Terram the night before. Lurian soldiers immediately seized Lobard and held him down on his knees. A full cathedral was witness to Mordrew drawing his sword and driving it straight through Lobard's chest. In the ensuing chaos, Lurian soldiers, present as a "peace-keeping force" according to King Terram, were said to have engaged Lobard the Brick's followers and either killed or seized any who would resist.
Mordrew was crowned the next day by Terram and took a pledge of fealty. The new king's first order was to outlaw the house de Bryc and a decade later all the followers of Lobard's son, Robard, which had not died in the ensuing struggle had retreated to Bryckly, the castle at Bryc, where the siege was finally broken and in a final stand, the wizard Azrahar engulfed the castle's high tower in a great ball of fire.
Robard's son, seen fleeing into the tower, was thought to have been lost.




Alright, falling in love with the new DnD books and wanting to start something up. So here it is.
I am looking for three characters and they have certain limitations. I understand this won't be everyone's cup of tea but I am looking to create a history and it requires a certain set of characters. Some will have more artistic licence than others. Have a look below and see what you might like to play.

Character Creation Notes: 3rd level characters; ability scores for everyone: 16, 14, 13, 13, 12, 11, or 31 point-buy; no background (replaced by choice of character, see below), you can mix and match characteristics from different backgrounds, no feats, no multi-classing without my explicit permission.

Although I'm replacing the backgrounds by the choice of your character, you can still pick characteristics from the background. Feel free to mix and match to suit your character and the background you're looking for.

N.b. Survival/outdoor skills and social skills will be very important so make sure you have them between your characters!

- The heir
You were just a boy, maybe 6 years old, when your mother and father took you to the Grand Cathedral at Farburh. All you can remember is watching grandfather Lobard. You had no idea what was going on or what was being discussed but it seemed awful important with all the people around. You could barely sit still in your seat, you just wanted to go outside and play or whatever it was you did in those days. And then something happened, you remember your mother gasping and you watched as soldiers took your grandfather. You were looking at him from the back, he was on his knees, and then a bloodred sword's edge came out and you could see the smiling face of the man they called Mordrew looking down on your grandfather. Panic was next and your mother whisked you away outside, screaming at your father to follow but you didn't see him until much later. At Bryckly, your life changed and you were taught from a young age about politics and warfare. And even if you didn't want to learn, you saw the bloodshed.
Race: Human-only
Class: Barbarian, Bard, Cleric, Fighter, Paladin, Ranger, or Rogue
Skill Proficiencies: Insight, Persuasion
Tool Proficiencies: Dragonchess
Languages: Choose any two standard languages and one language of any type
Equipment: A set of fine clothes, a signet ring, a scroll of pedigree, a purse containing 50 gp, one starting class item is made masterwork (+1 dmg for weapon or +1 AC for armor), and one trinket from your grandfather (pick from the list or describe your own)
Feature: Eleventh Brick Your childhood upbringing revolved around politics and warfare more than anything else but your parents were not above having Azrahar instill some history lessons. You recall lore of many events in history and know all the nobility on the continent. Sometimes you recall lore relevant to a certain situation allowing you to double your proficiency bonus on one skill for the rest of an encounter
DM's notes: you can create lore and gain this feature's bonus. I am trying to incentivize lore-creating for the sake of the lore rather than for the sake of a bonus. This choice of character is meant to be central and thus comes easiest to dispatch lore. Also, the DM may take over your character to drop some lore-bombs from time to time. Not a lot of freedom in character creation but a lot more freedom moving forward and plenty of opportunity to take the spotlight. I would suggest taking characteristics from the Noble background.

- The Ward
Loyal to a fault but even you could not stop them from killing Lobard. Was it shame that drove you to pledge your life to protect Robard's? Or something else? And how did you feel when Robard instead assigned you to protect his son? "I trust you with my life but my son's is more important to me." That's what he said. You had excelled in Lobard's service but now you had to watch this child. You taught them how to defend themselves, not to sit with their back to a door and to keep their weapon within arm's reach at all times.
Race: Dwarf (Hill, Mountain), Elf (Wood), Halfling (Lightfoot, Stout), Human, Gnome (Rock), Half-Elf, Half-Orc
Class: Barbarian, Cleric, Druid, Fighter, Monk, Paladin, Ranger, Rogue
Skill Proficiencies: Perception, plus any one of your choice
Tool Proficiencies: Any one
Languages: Any one
Equipment: A set of common clothes, one set of any tools, guard's whistle, red-white Bryc insignia, and a belt pouch containing 10 gp
Feature: Brick Wall You were always able to keep "your honor" from doing something stupid. Once per encounter, whenever the Heir makes a dice roll and you are able to assist them, you may reroll using your own modifiers and take the best result.
DM's notes: A lot more freedom with this one. Feel free to write a much longer background and I can easily be swayed to make some adjustments here or there if you can provide me with a solid reasoning. If you're going to pick Dwarf, there is a lot of lore involved for this campaign particular to them, do not write your background until you've consulted with me lest you have to throw a lot of it away.

- The Apprentice
Azrahar was your mentor. Although the elf didn't take much interest in your studies. Actually, you were more of an errand boy most of the time but as long as he didn't need you, you were pretty much free to do as you want. When the assault on Bryckly Castle began, you were there when your mentor opened a portal for the Heir and the Ward to escape. Before an arrow lodged in his neck he was able to tell you to go with them.
Race: Dwarf (Hill), Elf (High, Wood), Halfling (Lightfoot), Human, Gnome (Forest, Rock), Half-Elf, Tiefling
Class: Bard, Druid, Sorcerer, Warlock, Wizard
Skill Proficiencies: Arcana, plus any two of your choice
Tool Proficiencies: Any one
Languages: One exotic, plus one of any type
Equipment: A set of common clothes, one set of any tools, a scroll case stuffed full of notes from your studies, one magic item (choose from: Amulet of Proof against Detection and Location, Goggles of Night, Periapt of Health, or 2x Potion of Healing) and a belt pouch containing 5 gp
Feature: Researcher When you attempt to learn or recall a piece of lore, if you do not know that information, you often know where and from whom you can obtain it. Usually this information comes from a library, scriptorium, university, or a sage or other learned person or creature. Your DM might rule that knowledge you seek is secreted away in an almost inaccessible place, or that it simply cannot be found. Unearthing the deepest secrets of the multiverse can require an adventure or even a whole campaign.
DM's notes: A lot more freedom with this one. Feel free to write a much longer background and I can easily be swayed to make some adjustments here or there if you can provide me with a solid reasoning. If you're going to pick Dwarf, there is a lot of lore involved for this campaign particular to them, do not write your background until you've consulted with me lest you have to throw a lot of it away.

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Re: The Blood of a King [DnD Next]

Post by Dagnon on Sat Jun 20, 2015 7:51 am

I would like to play as the ward please.

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Re: The Blood of a King [DnD Next]

Post by Wallace on Sat Jun 20, 2015 8:33 am

Ok, so I'm not happy with the Apprentice's feature. If you can think of something better that you would like to see, I'm all ears! Or eyes, I suppose, since it's hard to read what people type with my ears....

Bonus (sub)races:
Eladrin: subrace for Elf from DMG, page 286, available to the Apprentice.
Aasimar: race from DMG, page 286, available to the Ward and the Apprentice.

Half-Dwarf: homebrew race, available to the Ward and the Apprentice.
Half-Dwarves stand slightly taller than hill dwarves and appear much less stocky. They tend to adhere to their dwarf or their human nature rather than a dual existence, regarding themselves as being of that race. Half-dwarves tend to show a tenacity unrivaled by others in display of dwarven bravery and human cunning. Skin tones tend to be greyish and beards are either on full display or shorn depending on the type of half-dwarf you're talking to. Half-dwarf lifespans are generally about a century longer than that of a human.

When picking half-dwarf as your race, please consult with me about some of the Dwarven lore that is your ancestry.

Dwarf Traits
Ability Score Increase: Two different ability scores of your choosing increase by 1
Age: Half-dwarves age at a similar rate to humans but can live up to two centuries long.
Alignment: Half-Dwarves tend towards one extreme or another and very few are truly neutral.
Size: Standing a little more or less than 5 feet tall, half-dwarves come in various shapes and weigh around 150 pounds. Your size is Medium.
Speed: Your base walking speed is 30 feet.
Dwarven Resilience: You have advantage on saving throws against poison, and you have resistance against poison damage.
Languages: You can speak, read and write Common and Dwarvish.
Subrace: Harfs and Hurfs make up the dual nature of the half-dwarves. Choose one of these subraces.

Harf
The half of this race that tend to see themselves more as dwarves than human always look for a strong connection to their ancestors and easily trust other dwarves as soon as they are welcomed by them. They generally find it necessary to overcompensate their dwarven traits and many are binge drinkers and easily insulted. These half-dwarves form communities where they don't feel the need to prove themselves to each other as much or or always seeking approval from dwarves of the clan to which they feel they belong.
Ability Score Increase: Your Constitution score or your Strength score increases by 1.
Dwarven Combat Training: You have proficiency with the battleaxe, handaxe, throwing hammer, and warhammer.
Tool Proficiency: You gain proficiency with the artisan's tools of your choice: smith's tools, brewer's supplies, or mason's tools.

Hurf
The other half which see themselves more as humans than dwarves are open-minded and feel the need to socialise as much as they can. Less emphasis is placed on ancestry and instead the pursuit of friendships. Despite this, they don't easily form bonds of trust and intimacy, always regarding others with some suspicion. Half-dwarves of this type are often loners.
Ability Score Increase: Your Charisma score increases by 1.
Skills: You gain proficiency in one skill of your choice.
Tool Proficiency: You gain proficiency in one type of tools of your choice.
Languages: You add one extra common language.



Nations of the Continent:
Nations and Families

Marland
Marland is made up of 17 baronies on the east coast of the continent where it occupies a strong location for trade with rivers reaching far inland up to the mountains in the north and up to the desert wasteland in the west.
Recent upheaval led to a clash between barons who favored de Bryc succession over a Rhidan dynasty as Mordrew of the House of Rhidan was thought to be in league with King Terram of Luria. Those barons that were overthrown by the Mordrew army were replaced with his own supporters, solidifying King Mordrew's place on the throne.
Marland has a temperate climate, heterogenous forests surround the capital of Farburh towards the south. Farburh has become the center of trade for the region in all except steel products and it lies on the river Leigh which reaches as far inland as Desert's Edge. Trade guilds have come to dominate the day-to-day life of ordinary citizens in Farburh much to the chagrin of the local priesthoods that held sway for so long and find it increasingly difficult to line their own pockets.
Bryc-upon-Sis, or Bryc, founded by and home to the House de Bryc until now. Located centrally on the river Sis, Bryc has always been at the center of Marian politics with the support of House de Bryc leading to rise and fall of many kings but never has their been a Brick king.
Temara, located on the Desert's Edge, a bastion against the nomadic hordes of the desert, has been the home to the most dutiful of half-dwarf clans, the Ironhammers. Dating back to Yerrick I when the half-dwarf descendant of one of Marland's oldest kings aided in the defeat of the Blue Horde, the Ironhammers were granted the barony of Temara as their own. Their support has always been quiet but never out of reach of the capital. When the Ironhammers' support comes into question, they are quick to point out that without the Ironhammers, there would be no king to support.

Luria
Occupying the south coast of the continent neighbouring on Marland to the east, the Desert's Edge in the north and the Short Sea in the south. 22 baronies make up what is the mainland of Luria and across the Short Sea, Luria occupies a handful of baronies on the coast taken from the Allugensian Empire in the Century of War. King Terram of the House of Carragone being the first in a long line of bloodthirsty kings to settle a peace treaty. Uneasy as it is, Terram's reign seemed to have started on a more peaceful note with his interests being directed at internal politics until the opportunity presented itself in Marland to place a straw king on the throne.

The Desert's Edge
Few venture beyond the Desert's Edge. The sand creeps up the walls of Temara which is the furthest point out that most dare to go. Dried forests make up the edge between the forests and hills of the coastal lands and on the other side are rolling dunes as far as the eyes can see. Many an adventurer has travelled through the nomad lands and the tale goes of an oasis with a city of gold founded by an exiled king who was forced to walk into the desert. Those who return speak of creatures that burrow in the sand, spring up to grab their companions and drag them under the surface. Others saw the nomad riders and were able to run and speak of those who ride scaly beasts and cover themselves in the bandages of their fallen enemies.

Emgard
The mountain ranges to the north were once knows as Emgard by all dwarves. Long did their kings reign as vassals to the kings of Marland. Subjects then, perhaps, but those who still remember those days speak not of animosity but friendship; a friendship which was neglected and when a new king had to be elected from among the dwarven clans, none was chosen and clan fought against clan. Dispersed across treacherous mountain ranges and deep dungeons, the clans have not had much interaction with Marland or each other apart from the border clans selling their metal- and stonework to passing traders. Those passes that once connected the dwarves have been buried by avalanches and life in the mountains has become tough, forcing each to fight for their own survival.
Dwarvish names for nations are different than what anyone else uses and can differ depending on which dwarf you talk to. 'Gard" is Dwarvish for 'land' and it is preceeded by the first syllable of its ruler family name. As such, dwarves refer to Marland now as Rhigard, although if a dwarf were to support a de Bryc dynasty they might refer to it as Bryckard. Emgard is a catchall phrase that non-dwarves use to refer to the mountain clans because it reached back to the days that the Embermaul clan ruled and was widely known as Emgard by the dwarves.
Emgard is now nothing more than a smothering of clans, each referring to their own patch by their own clan name. On the southern edges, foreign traders will visit Oathgard, Rugard, or Gagard but not venture higher into the mountains. Any dwarf in Marland is reluctant to call it anything besides Rhigard and Luria is known in the common Dwarvish tongue as Cargard. Only the desert has no name as nobody knows who rules there although some joking call it Sandgard as it is the sand which takes away all who dwell within.


Last edited by Wallace on Sat Jun 20, 2015 6:51 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Re: The Blood of a King [DnD Next]

Post by kabetts on Sat Jun 20, 2015 11:23 am

I'd be interested to play if you're willing to allow me.  I have no preference between playing the apprentice or the heir.  I think either would be fun, so if we get a third I'll be happy to make what ever they don't.

I'm thinking I'd make a Human Paladin for the heir or a Rock Gnome Diviner for the apprentice.

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Re: The Blood of a King [DnD Next]

Post by Wallace on Sat Jun 20, 2015 12:00 pm

Sounds good, Kory, welcome aboard. I think we'll have a third soon enough. I will move the lore and stuff in the above posts to the new forum once I find a bit of time.


Looks like we're bringing the band back together on this one Wink

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