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General Discussion and Questions / Re: Roads and Dragons
« Last post by tanis on September 15, 2018, 04:23:37 PM »
It's been a few months for me, too (been busy with life, going back to school, etc.), but I agree. I appreciate that you always ask this question, but my default answer will usually be in line with Laurent and Delbareth: we're petty tyrants of our own tables, so feel free to include as much canon information as you want, and we'll be free to take or leave anything you provide as it suits our needs.
Pieces of Eight Campaign / Re: Session 29 Summary
« Last post by tanis on September 15, 2018, 06:22:16 AM »
All right! Four talismans against four more, here we come. :D
General Discussion and Questions / Re: Alliance mage Lords
« Last post by Delbareth on September 14, 2018, 05:46:57 AM »
OK so the next question is : when this new technic appeared ?
In the History section, it is only said that Ozryk was a very talented sorcerer and that is formed the Alliance with 12 of his friends. And "Despite its growing size, true power eluded the group until Thull X, the Emperor’s son, joined." It seems to imply point #3 only.

Well, I guess we can suppose that such very talented mage started to discover a new way to do magic, and were searching funds to do their researches. And when they had, their strengh grew considerably. We can also guess they protected their secrets by creating Huridian, in order non-Alliance mages (I suppose there were a lot of second class mages who didn't belong to the Alliance) cannot have the same power.

It would be quite consistent. I like it !

In my next game, I want to make the character go to the Assembly Hall few days before the Sundering. At this time, I'm sure a lot of trouble with Drellikar were noticed y Alliance, Traxx and League. Alliance were "working on it", trying to brain-storm of the potential consequences and correctives actions to do. On the other hand, Traxx sent a suicid commando team to sabotage the spell. And I was wondering what Traxx mages can do to make the commando sneak in the Assembly. I though of very potent anti-magic spells, just to give the squad time to reach the core.
Of course it will fail (anyway, even if it succeed, it's too late and the Traxx mission success would have been kept secret by the Alliance the following days), and the Sundering will happen. Back in their home city before the sundering, PC will then have survive the chaos and protect their Mage-lord master.

What will be tricky for me as a GM is to avoid the player realize they live during the Sundering events. They all know the general history of the world (event if they lack details), and I have to prevent me pronouncing some words like "Thull", "Alliance mage-lord", "Focusing", etc...
General Discussion and Questions / Re: Alliance mage Lords
« Last post by David Roomes on September 13, 2018, 09:58:34 PM »
I always viewed the Alliance mage lords as having developed a complete branch of arcane science that is different than, and more powerful than, the magic of modern wizards. (Essentially, #1 on your list). This is what allowed them to accomplish such incredible feats on such a large scale. Some of the major feats they accomplished included:

Engineering entire new species of plants and animals and humanoids
The creation of a network of advanced teleport gates that spanned the Thullian Empire
The creation of vastly powerful magic items which are now artifacts today
And of course the Focusing spell itself.

Using D&D terms, I've always imagined that the Alliance mage lords were capable of 10th, 11th, and even 12th level spells. The Focusing would be an example (and probably the only example) of a 12th level spell... something that required the combined efforts of hundreds of wizards, had a casting time measured in years and literally tore apart a star and indirectly reshaped the world.

All of their incredible magic was lost when the Alliance mage lords were hunted down and killed after the Sundering. They were able to be hunted down and killed because, in the years after the Sundering, magic become unpredictable and difficult to control. Much of their wealth, magic and knowledge was destroyed by angry mobs and vengeful kings in retribution for the Sundering. Their magic today only exists as the occasional artifact that shows up in a treasure horde (most artifacts, in the traditional D&D sense, are enchanted items that were created by the mage lords).

Also, they have a written magic system called Huridian, which is so complex that it confounds all attempts to translate it. Though rare, there are books and scrolls written in Huridian that survive to this day. Most such books and scrolls are jealously guarded in the libraries of wizard guilds. Adventurers occasionally unearth an ancient tome written in Huridian. Any wizard who successfully translates Huridian could potentially unlock the power of the mage lords. Although that would likely take years or decades. Huridian has successfully defied all attempts to decode it for centuries. Many have tried. All of failed.

Well, almost all...  in actuality, there are two wizards who have successfully decoded Huridian. Though neither of those wizards has made that information public knowledge. And both of them live far from civilization.

Karnus was one of the few Alliance mage lords to escape. Years after the Sundering, he learned to regain control of his magic, relocated to another continent (Qeshir) and used his magic to help build a new nation (Anquar) which was dedicated to peace. He also created the Eight Talismans of Anquar (definitely artifacts) which helped build the nation.

So, that's how I run Khoras in my games. Feel free to adjust things for your games.

Hope that helps.

Rereading your comment, I would say that #3 and #4 are also true. The Alliance was heavily funded by the Empire and cooperation between mages was a major part of their strength. Both of those things helped them achieve  great things. But #1 is what really set them apart.

General Discussion and Questions / Re: Roads and Dragons
« Last post by David Roomes on September 13, 2018, 09:27:18 PM »
Thanks for the input. I will definitely create a "master map" that includes everything. It's probably going to be a few weeks before I can return to the map, but I'll get there. In the meantime, I hope everyone enjoys the new map.
General Discussion and Questions / Alliance mage Lords
« Last post by Delbareth on September 13, 2018, 07:57:25 AM »
Hi !

I'm currently preparing a session for a WE of RPG. The scene will take place just before (and after) the Sundering.

I have a question about the Alliand Mage Lords. They were incredibly powerful, but why ? I see several possibilities, but I would like to have your thoughts about that :
  • they discovered a new way to do magic, much more powerful than standard magic performed in the other countries
  • the lack of Drellis simply made mage of that time much more powerful
  • the Alliance was funded heavily and it directly led to skilled mages
  • the Alliance true idea was the cooperation between its members : by cooperating instead of competing, mages were able to learn and progress in skill much much quicker than traditionnal mages
  • other ?
Of course the issue is to explain how they were so powerful, but also how it completely disappeared after the Sundering.

(in fact some Mage Lords were still alive after, like Karnus for instance, and were able to do quite good spells. So option n°2 is discarded)
General Discussion and Questions / Re: Roads and Dragons
« Last post by Delbareth on September 13, 2018, 07:49:12 AM »
Hi David !

It's a long time I've not been here, even if I play on Khoras on a weekly basis.
First, congratulation for your map. It's a great work !

For your question, I have the same opinion than Laurent (a French bias ?). I would like to have as much information as possible as canon. Everybody is free to change anything if they want.
General Discussion and Questions / Re: Roads and Dragons
« Last post by Laurent MEKKA on September 05, 2018, 09:29:51 AM »
Great !
General Discussion and Questions / Re: Ogres in Arkalia
« Last post by David Roomes on September 04, 2018, 08:47:25 PM »
Here's how I run it in my campaigns:

First of all, that 1% is a rounding error. I didn't want to get into tenths of a percent, but it's less than 1%. For simplicity, I just rounded everything to the nearest percent.

On the race pages, all descriptions pertain to how that race lives in their home land, when they are the majority race. So, for orcs and ogres, it would be in places like Duthelm, the Coalition or remote wilderness groups. But anytime you're talking about ogres or orcs who live in civilized cities, they would adapt somewhat to the norms of that city.

I tend to run the ogres and orcs as a bit more civilized. Huge numbers of them live in the wilds in their own villages. Lots of them live in Duthelm and Coalition and other "evil kingdoms". But they are civilized and cultured warriors. A bit like Klingons. The percentage of orcs or ogres in a major city like Strathon would be very low and most of them are just visiting. I think the number of ogres or orcs living their permanently would be more like 0.1%. Pretty rare.

I imagine that orcs and ogres do occasionally visit civilized cities in small groups or as part of a mercenary band or with a caravan, etc. Anytime a group of orcs/ogres shows up, I don't think they would be arrested on sight. If a merc company arrives in town with a bunch of orcish soldiers, the merc company is expected to keep the orcs in line. If a trio of ogres walked into town on their own, the city guard would keep a close eye on them, but that's it.

Still, some orc tribes do live in the mountains and raid human villages and provide a good enemy race to fight.

You asked about Arkalia specifically. The few ogres and orcs who live their permanently are either employed in various militias, serving as farmhands in farming villages or working as laborers in remote forestry villages. They are pretty few and far between so they would be scattered about. Maybe a hundred might be in the capital city. Mostly soldier types.

A good historical example might be Native Americans during the 19th century. As white settlers moved across the country, they had various dealings with the natives. Sometimes commerce, sometimes battle, sometimes cooperation, sometimes distrust. Depends on the tribe and circumstances of the area. But even while some tribes were attacking in some areas, you still had individual natives and groups of natives that integrated themselves into the advancing western society.

General Discussion and Questions / Re: Roads and Dragons
« Last post by David Roomes on September 04, 2018, 08:09:51 PM »
Thanks for the input.

Ok, I think I'm going to create a version of the map that has everything marked on it... roads, dragon lairs, some of the more important villages, shipwrecks, etc. Game masters would be free to use or alter, as with everything on the map. But I'll probably leave the current versions of the map on line as well. Give everybody access to the "marked" version and the "clean" version.
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