The Harrowing of the Foul

This text has begun to appear around the area of Nocturne. Some have heard it from spirits while doing seances. Some have dreamt of strange entities whispering the words to them. Others have seen ghostly text appear on documents they are writing late at night, only to have it fade away with the dawn. Some have even waken from a restless sleep, finding the text written on parchment in their own hand.

The Harrowing of the Foul

When summer’s warmth is left behind

And winter’s threat is not so kind

The darkest time in all the year

Falls after harvest fields are clear

When the Harrowing times arrive

 

The time the Foul does cloak the Earth

Each year, these nights, its dark rebirth

And those that serve will drink and feast

What meal, not fit for man nor beast?

Best shunned by those alive

 

And though the living face this dread

The greater threat is to the dead

The Foul does claw each resting place

To stave off torment that they face

Each grave this night a threat

 

The Foul brings with it bitter spite

Undead grow stronger Thirteenth Night

Beware the dead, those touched by Foul

The ghasts and haunt these nights do prowl

The dead must pay their debt

 

With undead strong and ghouls about

Too strong, the Foul, to be locked out

No sanctuary this night remains

To bring folk rest nor ease their pains

No safe place will protect

 

In ancient times the House of Weald

Brought magicks strong in woods and field

To circles full of leering faces

That grew outside in darkest places

No soul would they neglect

 

In these dark times when blood is spilled

The Foul’s dark hate is never filled

It gnaws at flesh and eats at life

And claims all souls who fall from strife

Those downed have fragile fates

 

If battle comes when darkness falls

Let healers heed the battle calls

Each wounded friend in dire need

For allies fall and always bleed

Too slow, the Reaper waits

 

At Harrowing Time the earth is churned

The undead claw to freedoms earned

Though corpses lurch and bones do rise

Worse still the ghosts with seeking eyes

That do not find remains

 

These spectral dead are stronger still

With anger comes the urge to kill

When Malediction feeds despair

These ghosts possess each soul they tear

Each spirit it profanes

 

With living spirit ripped away

The haunting ghost comes forth to stay

Where once stood ally stout and true

The hungry ghost will seek its due

Until the Harrowing wanes

 

 

Out of Game

The Harrowing Nights last from Friday until dawn on Sunday.

  • During the Harrowing Nights, the typical sanctuaries are ruined. Players cannot take long rests in their hearths, or in the tavern, or even in their holy places as normal. In most of the lands, people lock themselves away. Around Nocturne, however, mysterious circles of Jack O’ Lanterns are said appear. Players may take long rests at these circles, exposed to those that might attack them. Those resting at a circle take all the power of one of the Jack O’ Lanterns while they rest. That is to say, if someone is already using a Jack o’ Lantern to rest you cannot use it until they are done. The circles start out small, with few Jack o’ Lanterns. Players can bolster the power of these circles, however. If you bring you own Jack O’ Lantern and place it at one of the circles, and keep it lit at night, the circles grow in power. More players can rest at one time. In addition, it is rumored that circles bolstered with more Jack o’ Lanterns can contribute more power to those that might use them to aid travelers, and perhaps other boons can be drawn from circles that grow in number if the Jack o’ Lanterns are carved with care or skill.

 

  • During the Harrowing, Malediction weakens all living and Gifted things. Players who fall from damage always fall unstable, even if they fall from uncalled damage. Whenever someone falls from damage or takes damage when they have no Vitality they are unstable from the damage. Characters can be Stabilized normally, but further damage will make them become unstable.

 

  • During the Harrowing, undead are more powerful and can be more resistant to some effects, particularly Death effect.

 

  • Vampyr Undying gain an additional Void during the Harrowing. Unfortunately, feeding is almost impossible during the Harrowing without exposing oneself to Malediction. In game, Vampyr Undying can feel the Foul in the air around them during this time and avoid feeding during the Harrowing of the Foul.

 

  • During the Harrowing, any of the Gifted that are inflicted by the Foul with a Haunting – “Inflict Haunting Trait” – are drawn into the Gloaming, and a corrupt spirit takes their place in the waking world to destroy any Gifted beings it finds.
    As a corrupt spirit, you lose all abilities, armor and traits of your player character. Boons are suppressed. You become a spectral mockery of your Gifted character. You have only three Vitality, have the Undead, Malediction, and Haunting traits, and will strike uncalled with whatever weapons you carry.

    Corrupted spirits do not speak or respond in a intelligible manner; their speech is limited to dark whispering of their terrible dreams, or soft cries of anguish. It should be obvious to any player who tries to communicate with you that something, by your whispers, is very wrong.

    This effect lasts until you are defeated or cured – “Cure Haunting Trait.” If defeated you fall down and 10 seconds later your player character returns with whatever Vitality and Armor you had when you were inflicted. If you fell down unstable then you are stable when you reappear; this is an exception to always falling unstable rule of the Harrowing.

    As bad as that is, there are corrupted areas of the Foul that can be much worse. If you are permanently inflicted by the Foul – “Permanent Inflict Haunting Trait” – the effect will not end when you fall. Instead the effect will last until you receive a “Cure Haunting trait” effect. If you are taken down then after ten seconds you will rise as a spirit and slink off into some dark place, only to slowly reform and come forth again to slay the living. You will try to reform just out of sight from the living; if you are forced by the area to reform within sight of those who are not corrupted your dark whispers or soft cries of anguish should be used to warn others that soon you will active once more.

    If the attack is delivered as a Gesture or By My Voice attack then you will turn to a non-combat spirit first, walk out to the horrible thing inflicting you, and then become combat active – when you are no longer in the middle of the ranks of your one time friends who would otherwise beat you into submission before you took two steps.

    Undying, Demonbound, and Grotesque player characters are particularly susceptible to these effects, but this corruption of the Foul can strike anyone.

    Other Details:
    ~
    Sometimes your spirit will glow with corruption during this time. You will put on a necklace with a soft light to indicate you are a corrupted spirit. This glow does not always occur.

    ~ It would be helpful to us if players who don’t normally carry weapons might hold an extra one at night. If you find your self inflicted without a weapon we will often have extras nearby.

    ~ Players who are non-combat or have some other medical reason to have a special combat status should contact plot if they should be immune to this effect.

    ~ In heavily corrupted areas, players who are drawn into the Gloaming and become corrupted spirits rely on living allies in the area to retain their lifeforce. If all of their Gifted allies are killed then they too might be killed.

    ~ We intend this to be fun and we expect players to be fair and fun to other players in all types of game situations. That said, players who would rather take a death or have some other detrimental effect rather than participate in this manner can drop me a line before the event.

    To summarize:“Inflict Haunting trait” means you become a corrupted spirit once.

    When you are dropped, you will be a spirit for 10 seconds and then you will become your character again in whatever state you left. If you were unstable you are instead stable.

    “Permanent Inflict Haunting trait” means you become a corrupted spirit until you receive a “Cure Haunting trait” effect, and each time you are destroyed you will, after ten seconds, reform and “recycle” in some dark place and attack again.

    If you go to reform, try to be in some dark place away from the players. If you must form near active players, take 10 seconds and use whispering and soft cries of anguish to warn them you are reforming.

    If the attack is delivered as a Gesture or a My My Voice then you will turn to a non-combat spirit first, walk out to the horrible thing inflicting you, and then turn into a combat active corrupted spirit.

    As a corrupted spirit:

    ~ All armor, abilities, skills, and boons are suppressed. Your actual body is trapped deep in the Gloaming.

    ~ You have 3 Vitality points.

    ~ You have the traits Haunting, Undead, and Malediction.

    ~ You have the ability to fight with whatever weapons you can find.

    ~ There will sometimes be extra weapons in the area you might be directed to if you have none.

Sneak Preview – The Five Scars

This is a sneak preview of the Five Scars. We thought players would be interested in seeing cultures and kingdoms as we work on them. As with all Sneak Previews, details may change over time.

The Five Scars

 Introduction

Far to the South, beyond even the southernmost oasis of the Desert tribes beyond Ket exist a seemingly endless expanse of harsh and barren steppes known as the Five Scars.  The land is named for five great chasms that cross the wastes as if a great claw had slashed into the world itself, leaving deep and angry scars befitting the people who thrive here.  Life there is a constant battle to survive against summer heat rivalling the hottest of deserts and winter winds as deadly as the coldest glacial mountains.  Game is scarce but there is no shortage of dangerous beasts willing to make a meal of the unwary.   This harsh land is home to the Sunscar orcs who arrived here long ago after the Sojourn brought them to this land.  The Orcs of the Five Scars are every bit the warriors, worthy of calling such a harsh land their home.

Orcs in the Five Scars follow the concept of Ahzrahn, living all aspects of life as if they were a perpetual march of war, ever advancing.   They constantly wander the badlands, considering their survival in spite of all the dangers of the land proof of their strength. Adversity provides a necessary challenge to keep themselves worthy.   The clans seldom shelter in a single place for more than a season, allowing the slaves captured from the north enough time to grow meager crops.  Once the clan moves forth, those who are unworthy are left behind and that which is left behind is forgotten.  The Five Scars Orcs are harsh, tenacious, and unforgiving, but not unnecessarily cruel.

The clans of the Five Scars would happily live raiding north against the Desert Tribes, viewing them as a worthy and challenging, if wily, foe, but the Five Scars Orcs have discovered a gift that makes them a menace to any people of any land.  Surrounding their namesake chasms, the Elemental Shamans of the Orcs have learned to find naturally occurring and in some cases even open gates from the badlands to numerous and distant lands. They cannot control or even know where the Gates might open on their other side, but the Orcs eagerly raid forth in search of strong foes and worthy challenges.

With their militant outlook and brutal upbringing, the Orcs could easily overrun and claim for themselves a lusher and more forgiving home, but that would be to accept defeat from the challenges of their lands.  They believe leaving the constant struggle to survive in the Five Scars would make them soft and weak, so instead choose to remain in the badlands, forever battling to conquer the unconquerable barrens they call home. While the Scars will always be their home, they frequently venture forth in search of advancing their Ahzrahn before returning.

Costuming

Orcs from the Five Scars dress for war and danger as often as they can, favoring armor of leather and metal that appears primitive at first glance, but in fact displays an experienced use of limited materials. While the Five Scars is a hot and unforgiving place, the winters can reach alarmingly cold temperatures, and there is no telling when a gate will offer a chance to raid into a cold or humid location, so adaptability is favored as well.

Roleplaying

~ All life is a pursuit of greater strength, in combat and in life. Against danger and adversity, it is the strong who survive, and those who survive the most challenging and brutal conditions prove themselves the strongest still.

~ Respect the tenacity and strengths of other warriors. There is no glory in competing with or besting children, so the greater your peers and adversaries, the greater your advance in Ahzrahn.

~ Treasure is to be taken, not found. If you did not face peril worthy of your Ahzrahn, you have not earned a true reward.

~ If one cannot defend what is theirs, it is not theirs, but rather they use it at the mercy of the strong.  If one cannot fight for their freedom, they are not free, but rather they go about life waiting for one stronger to put shackles upon them. An Orc must always be strong, so that none can take what is theirs or put them in chains.

~ To take pity and go easy on a foe is the ultimate insult. While killing them is not essential to defeating them, a worthy foe is worthy of an all out attempt to defeat them.

Religion

Elemental Shamans are common among the Orcs, as they are known to be able to listen to the Earth, Air, and Fire to find the Searing Ways, gates primed to open into the Northern Lands where fresh battle and plunder await. Animal Shamans are also not unheard of, but these are less common.

With their raids, and through captive slaves, some Orcs have found themselves called to the Woven Faith, though they remain largely uninvolved in the churches of the North, and would not pay so grave an insult to those who share their faith as to show mercy.  A few are also known to have adopted the philosophy of the Magi, though Northern Magi would accuse them of an imbalance toward destruction.

Magic

The most noteworthy magic of the Five Scars is the Searing Ways, which in fact the Orcs have no real control over. Rumors may swirl of Elemental Shamans who quest for a means to do so, but for now these mystical gates bring Orcs into battles they cannot predict. Some Elemental Shamans of the Five Scars can sense the gates forming, however.

Arcane Magic is by and large nonexistent among the Orcs of the Five Scars. The danger of an Arcane mage may be respected, but besting them with an axe is still considered the ideal approach to dealing with such a threat.

Society

The Five Scars Orcs organize themselves into Clans, and each clan is led by the strongest and deadliest of their number. Formal challenge over leadership is not necessarily uncommon, though there are social mores discouraging this when the act of doing so would weaken the clan.

As a balance to the warrior chief, the elders of each clan also speak with a great deal of influence, as they are the ones who have proven for the longest that they are strong enough to survive. These elders are not exempt from war or hardship, and take pride challenging death to take them.

The Orcs have certain standards that they expect their kin to meet. The most obvious are of strength and self-reliance; all Orcs are expected to be fit to march, hunt, and fight. All Orcs are expected to embrace and pursue battle, in particular the deadliest and most challenging of battle, and cowardice is a disgusting thing to a Five Scars Orc. While mercy is considered insulting, cruelty is seen as a sign of deep sickness, and so there is no room for the spiteful or torturous. Deceit and betrayal are viewed as unforgiveable sins, as they bring weakness to entire clans. Finally, forbidden magics such as Malediction are punished by death. If an Orc fails to meet these standards, they are left behind, and according to Ahzrahn all that is behind is to be Forgotten.

Because all Orcs of the Five Scars are expected to function as part of a raiding party, they have no room in their lives for things such as weaving or mining. This they force upon slaves captured in their raids through the Searing Ways. A slave is considered a slave so long as they can be made a slave, and there are cases of those who held their heads high and pushed at the bounds of their enslavement and survived long enough that their captors came to respect them, upon which their captors declare them free. The bar is set high for this, however, and a greedier clan will always find ways to deny the resolve of their captives.

There are a multitude of clans within the steppes, but there are several major clans which all are aware of. No clan has a set home, though they may have favorite hunting grounds or a guarded mine along the ravines.

Clan Kohaizar roams the steppes closest to where the Deserts of the North begin, and raid against the Children of the Sand almost as often as they do through gates, viewing their constant skirmishes as a dance long practiced, and raiding parties affiliated with this clan are known to respect to traditions of those desert tribes regarding their sacred oases, so that their feuds can remain a pure thing of strength and cunning, instead of true blood feuds of hatred and desperation.

Clan Emberskull hunts through the Searing ways almost exclusively, and traditionally takes relatively little from their raids, not wanting to risk softening themselves with “Northern Luxury.” Not only do they proudly live by their understanding of Azarahan, they see themselves as spreading the ideals to the North by destroying the things they believe coddle the “civilized” northerners. Structures such as farms, houses, and libraries are set to the torch, while leaving many survivors behind with the opportunity to become strong without those obstacles to Azarahan.

Clan Haktazsmitt rotates more regularly through static territories, as they include among their number many Runesmiths, which they support with forges and mines as best they can. Because of this Clan Haktazsmitt faces much raiding from other Five Scars clans to take their slaves, true runes, and true elements, and so this clan is much better trained at defensive warfare than any other clan.

In addition to these major clans there are several other notorious groups.

Clan Deepscar stalks the shadows, training themselves in stealth, tracking, and brutally efficient killing. Many other clans would call this cowardly, but a Deepscar Orc is ultimately known to be fearless and deadly, and these hunters venture through the gates longer than most, seeking out hard to reach targets to kill.

The Forgotten, though none would call them a true clan, is comprised of those who were deemed unfit by their clans and “forgotten” as they were left to fend for themselves. Many die when faced with this challenge, but should they find their way to the Forgotten Clan an Orc might strive for redemption and a second chance… or sink further into hubris as they travel among others as wicked and depraved as themselves.

Regions

To the North the terrain is the mostly flat, making it easier to travel on but harder to find shelter. These lands have easy access to the Desert Tribes of the North, but also face the occasional raid from those same Tribes venturing South.

As one goes further South the earth becomes more uneven and hard, with cracks and cliffs creating a shallow maze across barren lands until at last one reaches the Five Scars themselves. Each canyon is deep enough that most of the day it gets only minimal light, and temperatures can drop to be very cold. The Searing Ways are most concentrated around here, though they have been seen in many places in the Five Scars region beyond the canyons themselves.

Further south the ground continues on as rugged steppes with occasional desert sand, as far as any have ever traveled. The Searing Ways stop appearing well before the land stops being inhospitable, and none have ever found anything worth continuing south for.

People

Chief Iron Eye: Chief of Clan Kohaizar, and a follower of the Woven Faith, this Orc prides himself on battling with honor, prizing the most even of fights. He is said to seek out single combat almost compulsively, in the hopes of one day finding his better in a duel.

Chief Aslofk Unstoppable: Chief of Clan Emberskull, in her youth Aslofk voluntarily became a pit fighter in Vellingrim to test herself against their best, and found the concept of conceited nobles owning skilled warriors too sickening to continue, and instead slaughtered numerous onlookers before helping several gladiators escape, bringing some with her to claim the Chieftainship of her clan.

Visgoph the Unclean: Bedecked in rags instead of armor, and wielding spells instead of blades, this Orc claims to seek strength greater than any constrained by the way Ahzrahn can obtain, using dark spells and artifacts other clans would reject out of hand. The worst of the Forgotten flock to him for a chance at that power, while the rest hope they might kill him to redeem themselves in the eyes of their former kin.

Returning characters, reincarnations, and descendents

Madrigal is an ongoing campaign and a world with a long history. Madrigal 3 starts a new chapter in the ongoing story, we also want players with beloved characters to have an option to continue the story of those characters, though in a new and perhaps strange world far in the future.

In Madrigal 3 players of previous characters can continue their story in one of three ways.

  • You can play your previous character who awakes many centuries later to a new world.
  • You can play a descendent of your previous character, who carries the bloodline through generations into the current time of the campaign.
  • You can play a reincarnation of your previous character, a character reborn with vague memories of your previous character when game starts.

Although we are excited for players to have an opportunity to continue their characters, we also want to focus on the new campaign world and tell stories and drive plot using those elements rather than retell the stories of previous campaigns. To accomplish this the process for continuing your character is described below.

Playing an existing character

Before you decide to play your existing character, you will probably need to know three things.

First, in the time between campaigns there have been changes in the cycles of magic, the methods of fighting and warfare, and even the powers that people venerate that will profoundly affect your character. You will be recreating your character at 50 character points, and when game starts the world will feel strange and new to you. You simply won’t be as capable as some of the fully realized characters of the previous age. You can make your character with your starting points as you see fit; you have been dreaming for ages and those dreams could affect change in your skills.

You start at a base of 50 character points, but can earn extra points from a character history, a Paragon skill, and prop creations and donations like any character.

What About my Race?

One thing that can happen to a character in the dreaming is that you can enter the world as a new race as the magic of the Gate attempts to fit you in. If you’d rather play you old race then you simply select that race with the following exceptions.

  • Eluviar, Leindrel, and Malekyrg Elves are Faded Elves except their racial mark hasn’t fade yet.
  • Wayward races would have to work with plot to properly depict their old race.
  • Eurvein can keep their old full make up or use the new make up requirements.

Second, special items and effects have faded in the intervening centuries. Yes, you have weapons, armor, costuming pieces, and items you need to use your new skills. You can also be carrying normal types of adventuring gear you might have carried in the past such as lanterns, writing instruments, and blank journals or papers. Other items, including written notes and journal entries, have mysteriously faded – the writing destroyed leaving the papers or pages blank. Special skills that are not in the current rulebook are also gone.

Third, you’ve come forward many, many years and you did not simply hop forward in time. Your spirit entered the Crimson Gate sometime at the end of Madrigal 2 and it is possible that you have had dreams and visions while you slept. When you wake so many years later your memory of the past will not automatically be as crisp as you would expect. Although you can, when someone helps you to concentrate on the past, recount events of the previous age as you might remember them out of game, those memories will be vague as they first occur around you. You will be playing the game as if you were waking up renewed and refreshed, and your old memories will slowly awaken within you.

Wait, Why Don’t I Have My Memories?

While we won’t comment at this time on the in game reasons why this has happened, we have very specific out of game reasons why the detailed memories of continuing PCs have scattered.

As we envisioned players coming together, the one thing we wanted to avoid was players feeling forced into long sessions where they have to pour forth all the knowledge they learned in the past age. While this type of behavior makes perfect tactical sense, we felt it would just be un-fun for both the people forced to go through their histories as if they were catalogs, and for the players who felt compelled to catalog that information. We wanted to completely avoid that.

So What Do I Remember?

When you awaken in game you will remember all the personal information that makes you, well, you. Whatever bare necessity character history information you need to make sure you can play your character is there for you to use. Some of the proper names might be fuzzy, but we want you to be able to play your basic personality.

You will know any people from the past if you encounter them. If another PC comes through with you then you will know them, know their name, and remember how you felt about them. Likewise, in the unlikely event that you actually meet an NPC from the past in game your memories of them will start to come back to you. Our goal certainly isn’t to prevent you from interacting with characters you already know in a meaningful fashion; we want you to do that.

Details of the world that you learned in game, however, will be lost; at least at first. If you hear the name of someone or something in the past it will sound familiar to you. You might even feel drawn to it; like some fleeting memory when you just wake up from a dream. If you pursue it, or spend time with another character concentrating on that memory you can talk through it and it will slowly come back you. Each memory is like a treasure that you have to search out and find at your own pace. If someone tries to force you to remember too much you just won’t be able to.

How Do I Remember?

Every memory starts as a vague familiarity when something happens in game to trigger it. It will seem like a long series of severe déjà vu when you encounter something in game that triggers an old memory. You won’t immediate know why it sounds familiar, but the familiarity would certainly appeal to you. We leave it to (and trust) players to let memories come forth at their own pace, but we ask you to consider two things when you make this decision. First, what is fun for you? Second, what is fun for the other PCs? If pursuing a familiar name or concept sounds like it will be fun for you and another player, then we encourage you to explore it.

Once you have a seed of familiarity you can find a place with another willing player and talk through the memory with them. They have to lead you with a series of questions, and your memory will slowly be revealed through role play.

This process does not have to be permanent. You can, if you wish, reveal a memory in a role playing session and later have trouble again with the details when others are around. You can determine that it is still a little fuzzy if it will be more fun for you or other players.

Plot can also, through role play, awaken memories within you, either temporarily or permanently.

No Angst Needed

Another concern that players have raised is that it could be jarring and somewhat emotional for a character to wake up and find out everything they knew is gone. While some of this might be fun for some players, the time you spent dreaming near the start of the new campaign left you vaguely aware that time had passed. In those dreams you could have wandered the Deep Dreaming enough to have time to reflect and adjust to what had happened and how you might use your new skills. This allows a you, when you come into game, to determine that you have already had some time in the Dreaming to grieve so you can start in a frame of mind more suited for the adventures ahead.

How Did I Get Here?

At the end of the last arc of Madrigal, the Crimson Gate called to many of the heroes of Shadowfane. The call was compelling; more to some than others. Even for characters who left the Gate, and even after the Gate faded from this world, characters would hear the Madrigals and seem the familiar crimson glow in archways or old doorways calling to them.

Some characters entered that Gate soon after the last event, before it faded from the world. Some heard the call later, but certainly before the Night of Dreams. Sometime in the days, weeks, or months after the campaign ended your characters entered the Gate. All you remember from that experience is swirling lights of various reddish hues and the Madrigals playing softly as you, like the Gate, faded from the world.

Playing a reincarnation of your character

With this option, you are playing a new character that is the reincarnated spirit of your previous character. The spirit has somehow found its way back to the world and is reborn. You have lived another life, unaware of your previous existence. At the start of the game you begin to have strong feelings of déjà vu, and events trigger memories from the past.

Like existing characters, these newly awakened memories will not automatically be as crisp as you would expect. Although you can, when someone helps you to concentrate on the past, recount events of the previous age as you might remember them out of game, those memories will be vague as they first occur around you. You will be playing the game as if you were waking up renewed and refreshed, and your old memories will slowly awaken within you. Proper nouns and pronouns will be particularly hard to remember.

What Memories Will I Have?

In time many of your previous memories will return as emotions and strong short visions. Historical information and proper names won’t usually come forth unless that name was particularly relevant to you. Instead you will be looking for events and scenes in the current game that remind you of your previous experiences. At first these triggers will create seeds of familiarity; you will feel new feelings about the name, character, event or scene but you won’t know why.

As with existing characters, you won’t immediate know why something seems familiar, but the familiarity would certainly appeal to you. We leave it to (and trust) players to let memories come forth at their own pace, but we ask you to consider two things when you make this decision. First, what is fun for you? Second, what is fun for the other PCs? If pursuing a familiar name or concept sounds like it will be fun for you and another player, then we encourage you to explore it.

Once you have a seed of familiarity you can find a place with another willing player and talk through the memory with them. They have to lead you with a series of questions, and your memory will slowly be revealed through role play.

This process does not have to be permanent. You can, if you wish, reveal a memory in a role playing session and later have trouble again with the details when others are around. You can determine that it is still a little fuzzy if it will be more fun for you or other players.

Plot can also, through role play, awaken memories within you, either temporarily or permanently.

Playing a descendant of your character

This option allows you to play a descendent of your previous character. Countless generations have passed since the previous campaign (okay I know some of you *are* counting, bear with me) and although you bear your previous character’s Paragon skill and maybe their name you can only bring forth one, two, or three vague tales that have been passed down about them.

~ Tales should forego and forget proper names of other characters. Other characters will appear by their titles or appearances in a cool way that doesn’t have any proper name attached.

~ Tales should be about the heroics and/or tragedies of your ancestor, not about historical events or facts. It is likely that the actual events will be sorely exaggerated and maybe misunderstood, but the essence of your previous character can shine through.

~ Tales should help shape your character in a profound way. Otherwise, why be a descendant?

Momentoes

Players continuing their character can have one non-magical momento that comes with them from the last campaign. This could be a sword, or a piece of armor, or a symbol, or a family heirloom from the past. Players continuing their characters can be simply carrying them. Players creating a descendant can have an item passed down through the generations or find an item unearthed in some ancient hiding place. Players playing a reincarnation can somehow find the item, and perhaps that item is what begins their journey towards remembering the past.

There are some rules about your Momento, however.

First, it has no powers. It is unlikely it will ever have powers. We aren’t trying to start existing characters with magical items unavailable to new characters; we want everyone on equal footing. Maybe someday, if we feel the newer players are well established in the campaign and things are running smoothly, some plot member might have someone or something recognize a Momento but players should not have that expectation.

Second, the memories of your Momento are scattered, much like your memory of specific game events. For existing characters and reincarnations, the item has a seed of familiarity but that’s all, at least at first. For descendants the significance of the item is lost or misunderstood; if there are tales about the item then the proper names and nouns are lost and the tale has been modified over time into legend and hearsay.

Third, attempts to use Momentos to restart or resurrect plots or plot elements from the past will fail. We are interested in looking forward, not back. A holy symbol, as an example, will not be successfully used to create a following or cult of an old god. A symbol of an old order, will not be successfully used to pursue old hidden skills that players found in previous campaigns.

As the Game Begins

Some voice calls to you, rousing you from your slumber. The light and music around you feels like the crimson light of the Gate that took you from the world. You feel compelled to follow it, and as you do you sense others also approaching it…

 

So, you are playing a new character?

Madrigal is an ongoing campaign and a world with a long history. Madrigal 3 starts a new chapter in the ongoing story, and we are using this opportunity to move the game forward both in time and in story. Because of this, it is a great time to start a new character and join our game with either a fresh start or with fresh eyes.

New characters have the opportunity to explore the races and cultures of Aerune that have risen up in the time between campaigns. With this comes the opportunity to create a new character history for your character. We wanted to take some time to explain how the campaign is designed, what you can expect from a character history, and why your character might be drawn into the story.

A Sequestered Past

Madrigal is designed so players learn about the world in game. We understand that players are eager for lots of details to help fill out their character histories. The world, however, is a large and dangerous place, where travel and the passing of knowledge is difficult and not all that common. Although we expect the players to overcome these restrictions as characters playing the game, the average and even above average person in the world of Aerune does not have the opportunity to see or learn about much of it.

We ask that players, when they create histories, do so assuming that their characters have had a sequestered past. They can be larger than life characters, and can have some larger than life experiences, but for whatever reason the knowledge about the actual world is limited. Perhaps your family has kept you busy with mundane duties so you couldn’t travel as much as you would have. Perhaps your opportunities to really learn the history and cultures of the world were lost because you were trying to keep yourself fed. Perhaps you’ve been on the run and you have maintained a low profile such that you haven’t been able to gather lots of world experience. For whatever reason, your knowledge of the world is pretty much limited to the information about the cultures that have been released.

Cool Stuff Happens In Game

Madrigal is also designed so the cool stuff happens during the game rather than between game events. This means that we minimize or eliminate off board activity, restricting it to day to day activities you might need to survive. You spend your time gathering or purchasing food, maintaining armor and equipment, and otherwise preparing yourself for gatherings where many people meet.

We ask the same of your character history. While we definitely want you to have key moments to define who you are, we want to limit the truly heroic action to the game. We definitely want players to be able to create tidbits and scenes in the past that give them good material to role play with other players and characters. We also want players to be able to justify that they are well trained; a 50 point character is above the average soldier, bandit, or similar combatant in effective skill. Do keeping in mind that you are starting at 50 character points, and that some creatures like greater undead, Drowned Elf nobles, Vellingrim nobles, and the like are probably still too powerful for you to defeat, at least until you confront them in game.

Finally, while we have included a number of named characters in the rule book for characters to use in their character history, in the end you should not have a history that makes you so comfortable with a named character that you would have a special bond with them. We prefer those bonds to be formed during game.

Reincarnations and Descendants

Some new characters are reincarnations or descendants of previous characters from earlier incarnations of the Madrigal campaign. If you are making a character with these options you will need to read both this document and its sister: So, you are continuing a character?

The Story So Far…

In the days and weeks leading up to the first event, tensions between the Commonwealth of Blacktallow and Vellingrim have risen. Bandit attacks on both kingdoms have increased. Although the official reports claimed that Hobgoblins had staged the attacks, both kingdoms had accused the other of staging the attacks or even working with the Hobgoblin tribes and encouraged or financing the attacks. Skirmishes have broken out on the border of the two kingdoms, occupying the attention of both.

The hobgoblins have not only struck south. They have been seen roaming the walkways through Dremasque, raiding caravans of silk and even hunting the lizardfolk found there. The raiding has also disrupted supply lines to Morgrave and Kyrzenwold, causing both to have to turn their defenses to their supply lines. Morgrave, with its weakened lines, has seen an increase in undead attacks. With the Kyrzenwold Rangers distracted with watching the supply lines there have been kidnappings reported in that area. The hobgoblin attacks have thrown the lizardfolk into war, and Dremasque and Sollos are occupied with lizardfolk raiding parties. As tales of the raiding and fighting spread, more and more kingdoms and peoples have taken notice of the conflicts and stories.

While fighting erupted along the border to the south, and with the other nearby kingdoms moving to shore up positions weakened by hobgoblin or lizardfolk raids, the Guild Arcana was forced to investigate the situation itself. The Hobgoblin numbers have rapidly increased, and the raids have become more and more organized and bold. Caravans and merchant houses have been sacked, and travelers of all sorts have been accosted. Hobgoblins in record numbers have poured out of the mountains, threatening all nearby lands. With so many kingdoms embroiled in their own troubles, the Hobgoblin attacks have gone unanswered and the doorstep of the Guild Arcana has become all but impassable to merchants without heavily armed escorts.

The Guild Arcana hired scouts and adventurers to determine the origin and reason for the attacks. Reports back to the Guild Arcana traced the Hobgoblin attacks through the Forbidden Hills and south towards the mountains. In the broken lands south of the Forbidden Hills, the scouts reported ruins with strange lights. Some reported hearing music drifting from those wild and wooded areas. The lone scout to return attributes his survival, and the success of the mission, to a baleful and forlorn spirit that healed him after his scouting party had been defeated by Hobgoblin forces, yet refused to speak or interact in any other way.

These reports caused a flurry of activity among the Guild Arcana, and experts and scholars were brought in to determine what these ruins, lights, and music could be. Some countries and kingdoms sent what representatives they could, including Kyrzenwold, Sollos, Dremasque, and the Commonwealth of Blacktallow. The speculation produced several theories, though it wasn’t until members of the Illuminarium arrived that anyone produced any substantiated information. The Illuminarium, an obscure organization of mystics and sages whose goal is to unearth information lost in the three Cataclysms, claimed to have some insight into the ruins.

The order put a name to the structures; the ruins of the lost city of Nocturne. Those in attendance were shocked; that legendary place was swallowed by the earth during the first Cataclysm and eradicated, or so it was thought, from Aerune. The Illuminarium claimed that the ruins that had risen from the earth were ancient structures from Nocturne, and the order hoped that some of the magic of Nocturne had emerged with the ruins. The Illuminarium claimed its origins harkened back to the ancient city, and described Nocturne as it once was; a sprawling wonder filled with magic and music that, if tales were true, used song to bend spell and used magic to enchant songs.

Although the Illuminarium has called upon the kingdoms to provide forces to explore the ruins and fight back against the hobgoblins, most of the Kingdoms are embroiled in their own struggles and can scarcely afford to commit forces to fight for an unclaimed piece of wild and untamed land; ruins or not. It doesn’t help that the Illuminarium are an obscure and poor order with few allies in the courts. Although the Guild Arcana has made use of its impressive wealth to enlist mercenaries from as far away as the Free City of Ket, the Guild is too interested in protecting its own borders and keeping the merchant roads open to send forces through the Forbidden Hills and into the wild to explore ruins.

The Call of Adventure

The Illuminarium might have faded once again into obscurity, and the ruins of Nocturne with them, but the Tapestry, apparently, had other designs. Although rare in the current days, there are exceptional individuals that have been taught or somehow encouraged to follow the Aspects of Virtue and the Aspects of Strife. They uphold the ancient teachings from before the Night of Screams, and maintain the example of one of the Virtues or Strifes. These individuals, called Paragons, are the last folk to embrace those teachings

Paragons all over the lands have received dreams; visions leading them to the ruins of Nocturne. Some hear music, some hear laughter, others hear voices long thought silenced calling them forth. Some Paragons tell tales that they have heard the Sun speak to them, and others speak of the voice of the Moon. Whatever these impossible whispers and visions might mean, the phenomenon has sparked the imagination and interest of many folks.

With this new information, kingdoms near and far, although unable to commit major forces, have called on heroes and agents to go forth and enter the ruins. Paragons have begun to travel toward the Forbidden Hills to see what calls them from beyond. With the dreams of the Paragons substantiating the claims of the Illuminarium, other adventurers have also come forth. Nocturne did not only have tales of music and magic; the tales also told of great wealth and magical treasure that would no doubt have been buried with the city. If the ruins have begun to emerge, one cannot help but wonder if the treasures of that place have also surfaced…

 

 

 

 

 

Logistics

In order to participate in Madrigal there are some mundane steps and pieces of information a player needs to know to play.

Madrigal Resources

Madrigal maintains the following resources to disperse information to the players:

Our website:

https://madrigallarp.wordpress.com

 

Our mailing list:

We have a mailing list for players. It is a yahoo group with the address:

Madrigal@yahoogroups.com

You can search yahoo groups to find the group. Request membership with a short note of who you are and that you want to play. When the group was open we had way too much email spam so now it is a closed group.

https://groups.yahoo.com

 

Our Facebook group:

From Facebook you can search for the Madrigal LARP group and join up!

 

Our Pinterest page:

We sometime share images with players to help players visualize costumes or races from our world. You can find it here:

https://www.pinterest.com/madrigallarp

Madrigal Events

The first thing you will want to do is determine the dates for the events. We have the dates and locations for upcoming events on our web site. The link for the events page is here:

https://madrigallarp.wordpress.com/events/

Costs

Participating as a player in Madrigal costs $80.

Participating as an NPC in Madrigal is free!

Our events that are located at Camp Woodstock also have a cafeteria. The cafeteria provides meals Saturday morning at 10:00 am, Saturday evening at 6:00 pm, and Sunday morning at 10:00 am. Players are not required to use the cafeteria.

For players, each morning meal costs $6 and the evening meal costs $8 for a total of $20.

For NPCs, each morning meal cost $6 for a total of $12. Madrigal pays for your evening meal so that meal is free.

Registering to Play

Registering for Madrigal is fairly simple. We do our registration through a web service called LARP Portal. Our web site has information about using LARP Portal. You can find it here:

https://madrigallarp.wordpress.com/registration/

You can also go to LARP Portal directly with this link:

https://www.larportal.com/

For NPCs, you also register with LARP Portal.

Payments

We accept payment before the event through Paypal. You can either pay through LARP Portal, or you can use our payment page.

Payments

Arriving at Game

Arrival at the game generally begins at 7 pm. You can arrive as early as Friday at 2:00 pm on site, and players that travel a long way to play sometimes do arrive earlier, but before 7 pm the staff is doing set up, unloading props and bins, and might not have listings of where all the players are staying yet. If you don’t know which cabin you have been assigned to before arriving on site and arrive earlier that 7 pm we’d appreciate be aware that our player housing list might not be readily available.

Check In

Check in for players generally starts around 8 pm. Sometimes we will start earlier to try to mitigate the lines, but the people who help out with check in are sometimes delayed. Check in takes place in the tavern. At check in we will be looking to accomplish the following.

  • Check to see that your registration and payment are complete. If not, we would accept payment at that time. We do not have the capability to accept credit cards at the door.
  • Check your weapons for safety. This is often a spot check, though we do want to look at the weapons of new players.
  • Accept your character’s maintenance payment. See below for more information.
  • Allow you to use Runeforging or Alchemy to make tagged items. We will check you card for the appropriate skills and accept true element or alchemical component tags to create tagged Runes and Alchemy substances.

“What if my weapons fail safety check?”

If we have a problem with your weapons we will do our best to help you play the game; either by lending you weapons if we have extras, or helping you have a temporary character card so you can participate.

Check in for NPCs is done as you arrive in monster camp.

Maintenance

Maintenance represents your character’s efforts to keep themselves clothed and fed. At the beginning of each event you pay 5 coppers for Maintenance. If you cannot pay you gain the Starving trait and lose, for the weekend, a point off your maximum Void attribute. This reduces both the number of Void points you would be able to spend and reduce the number of times you can refresh your Earth, Fire, and Water attributes.

Starvation accumulates from event to event. Each additional event you go without paying maintenance you lose an additional point of Void. If you begin an event with no points of Void left you have that event to find sustenance or your character will die from starvation.

If you are starving, you can rectify that situation during game by receiving a “Cure Starvation” effect from some game character or source. In this case you will immediate gain lost Void points and your maximum Void will return to normal.

There are game skills that pay maintenance for you each event automatically. Some let you survive off the land, and some let you receive food from a patron. These skills allow you to ignore maintenance costs, although there might be plots that tax these sources and prevent them from reducing some or all of your maintenance costs.

Well Fed

Characters can pay extra for maintenance to gain extra nourishment and maintain a higher and healthier lifestyle. A character who pays for extra maintenance increases their maximum Void for the weekend. This allows you to not only refresh your Earth, Fire, and Water an additional time but you may also use an additional point of Void to pay for skills.

You must pay a total of 2 silvers (20 coppers) to be Well Fed for the weekend. If you have a skill that allows you to ignore maintenance, then this cost is reduced to 15 coppers as a result.

Out of Game Opening

On Friday night all PCs meet in the tavern for Out of Game opening. This meeting gives the staff a chance to make announcements for the weekend and tell the players about any special effects or rules that might be going on during the event. This meeting is mandatory for players. We also gather new players at this meeting for an introductory new player module.

“What if I miss Out of Game Opening?”

If real life events cause you to be late or otherwise prevent you from making this meeting, we ask that you catch the details the best you can from a player who was there. If you are a new player and miss this meeting you might miss the new player module. That might leave a new player somewhat in the dark about where certain places are so you will have to find a friendly player to help you out and answer questions. If you are truly lost about what you are doing feel free to come by Monster Camp and we will help you out!

For NPCs, on Friday night all NPCs meet in monster camp for Out of Game opening. This meeting gives the staff a chance to make announcements for the weekend and tell the NPCs about any special effects that might be going on, so this meeting is mandatory for NPCs. If you miss this meeting, we ask that you catch the details the best you can from a staff person or an NPC who was there.

“What if I only NPC a partial event?”

Some players can only participate for a limited time during an event. These players can still participate and have fun while they are there. If you miss the Out of Game Opening, however, we ask that you make sure a staff person knows you have arrived so they can explain any special announcements we might have made Friday night.

Start of Game

The game starts on Friday night after Out of Game Opening, usually at 10:45 pm. Sometimes, if the staff has heavy set up, we might be delayed and game will start closer to 11:00 pm.

End of Game

The game usually ends early Sunday afternoon when there is an appropriate break in the action. This is usually between 1:00 pm and 2:00 pm, though sometimes we run slightly over.

Game Times

Players are in game from Friday night until Sunday afternoon when game ends. There are no breaks where players go out of game for all that time. We ask players to stay in game as much as possible during game hours.

Madrigal has official meal times on Saturday at 10:00 am and 6:00 pm, and on Sunday at 10:00 am. These meal times last an hour, and the game action is usually limited to role play. This allows players to visit the cafeteria, or to prepare food or grill safely without, for the most part, creatures attacking them. Meal times are completely in game, and this time is often a good time to role play.

If we are at Camp Woodstock and using the cafeteria meal service then we do warn players that although the players at the cafeteria are completely in game, the area and the camp’s food staff do not maintain atmosphere as well as we’d like and for that we apologize and ask for your understanding.

Because breakfast starts at 10:00 am and ends at 11:00 am, Madrigal tends to start at 11:00 am and run late. There are occasional earlier encounters and modules, but the game has tended, in the past, to have encounters at night that can go late. Some players find that taking a nap during the day helps them participate in the later encounters.

The Hearth

Although Madrigal runs continuously from Friday night through Sunday, there are spells that can protect your Hearth, which is essentially the cabin or tent where you sleep, from 2:00 am until 10:00 so you can sleep safely. Characters who are still out and about after 2:00 am will sometimes still find encounters or characters late into the night, and sometimes Madrigal encounters run later into the evening.

Farmers

The Madrigal game area often has farmers roaming around wearing wide straw hats. Farmer hats are reserved for staff members and NPCs that are moving from place to place to prepare encounters.  Farmers are purposely uninteresting characters and other than perhaps an in game greeting in passing we ask that you ignore them so they can get to where they need to be to keep the game flowing.

Although we ask players to stay in game for the entire weekend, we recognize that sometimes situations pop up that either the staff should know about, or that can be mitigated by the staff so that the event will run more smoothly for a player. If you have some pressing question that really needs to be answered and you recognize that the farmer nearby is also a staff person then that is a good time to, off to the side, deliver an inquiry or some out of game information that the staff might need to know.

Plagued

Madrigal is a heroic game populated by heroic characters, and players often go to extreme lengths in the game to accomplish a wide variety of heroic deeds. Sometimes, however, the realities of the real world intrude on the event and players cannot or should not participate in the game for out of game reasons. A player might not feel well, or might have pulled or twisted something, or might have succumbed to extreme hot or cold temperatures, or they might have to actually get sleep so they can drive a long distance home at the end of the event.

In Madrigal, characters can contract a special Plague at any time. This plague is a sickness that disables the character. It cannot be cured through any in game means. It is entirely up to you, the player, to determine when your character is suffering from this plague. In game this is a magical curse from some demented demon. Out of game this denotes that you cannot, for out of game reasons, participate in the game at that moment.

If you are sick, or cannot or should not participate in the game you should get some rest and tell people who are trying to interact with you in game that you are Plagued. This phrase indicates that although your character may be eager or even obligated to participate in some game event, they are physically and mentally incapable of doing so. This allows you to get the out of game rest or recovery time you need.

If you try to get someone to help with some task, and they tell you that they are Plagued, then this means that there is some out of game reason they cannot participate at the current time in the game, and that in game you know they are debilitated and unable to adventure, fight, or even interact until the Plague has passed. We request that if you encounter a character who is Plagued that you respect that and don’t try to talk them or guilt them into participating in the game so they can recover.

Character Point Awards

Character points are the currency you use to buy game skills and attributes. As you participate in the game and find ways to help to make Madrigal a better game you will accumulate character points that you can use to improve your character. Over time your character can spend character points to gain more skills and to improve attributes.

Each character starts with 50 character points. You can gain additional character points in the following ways:

  • You earn a one-time bonus of 5 character points for submitting a character history. You can earn this bonus even if you submit a history after your first event. Players are always welcome to submit updates to their history, though you can only earn the bonus once.
  • You earn 1 character point for each event you attend as a player or an NPC.
  • You earn .5 character points for helping us out with a set up and/or clean up task.
  • You earn .5 character points for submitting a summary letter.

If you NPC a sister game that has a character point exchange with Madrigal then you can also earn character points by attending that game as an NPC.

  •  You earn 1 character point for when you attend an event at a sister game as an NPC.
  • You earn .5 character points for helping out with a set up and/or clean up task when you NPC.
  • You earn .5 character points for submitting a summary letter after you NPC.

You cannot apply other types of character point rewards you earn at other games to Madrigal; you can only gain characters points at other games for playing as an NPC, helping them with set up or clean up, and submitting a summary letter about your NPC experience to that game.

Madrigal often has the need for players to create or donate props and supplies. The staff maintains a list of props and costuming that we need. This is a great way to earn extra character points. We also make requests for packet donations each event.

Character Point Cap

Madrigal has a character point cap. This is the maximum number of character points a single character can have. The cap allows you to add 15 character points per year to your character from any source, and an additional 5 character points that must be earned through set up and/or clean up at Madrigal events, summary letters for Madrigal events, and Madrigal specific prop and costuming donations.

  • History and Paragon awards do not count against this cap, making it possible for a character to reach 80 character points in the first year.
  • The cap goes up by 20 each year, with the end of each year being December 31.
  • The cap is campaign wide; once it goes up it is increased for all players, old and new.

Players that start the game after the first year are not limited in the amount of character points they can earn each year, so long as their total points to not exceed our total character point cap. Players must still earn at least 5 of those points for each year of the campaign from Madrigal specific tasks involving set up and/or clean up, summary letters, and donations.

Set Up and Clean Up

Madrigal always has lots of set up and clean up to do. We ask for the players to help with this; not only is it a great relief to the staff to have help but it will also get you an extra .5 character points for the event!

The Madrigal staff will also look for players who are willing to take on a permanent set up and clean up task. This usually involves being responsible to set up and clean up some in game area You might be responsible for setting up and cleaning up the Temple of the Woven Faith, or the Gate of Death, or some other recurring area. The advantage to this is that you are really helping us out and we will love you for it, but you have a consistent task every event that you know about and can plan around.

“What if I have an assigned task and I will be late or can’t make the event?”

We ask that you either inform staff ahead of time so we can plan appropriately. If you can also find another PC willing to take you task for the event that would be wonderful.

Summary Letters

At the end of each event you are encouraged to submit a summary letter. The preferred method to submit your summary letter is through LARP Portal. We want to hear about your experiences at the game. While LARP Portal is set up with some suggested questions for you to answer, it is ultimately up to you to decide the contents of your summary letter.

Each event you can earn .5 character points for submitting a summary letter within two weeks of the event. We have the time requirement to encourage players to submit a letter while the event is fresh in their mind and so staff has a chance to read them before we discuss the previous event at our meetings. If real life makes it difficult or impossible to get in your summary letter in that time frame you may drop us a line and request an extension.

NPC Shifts

Because Madrigal has no player cap, it is possible for us to run into the situation where we have far more people interested in participating as players rather than NPCs. While we make every effort to provide entertainment in ways that use NPCs efficiently, there are times when we might appreciate extra NPCs to make a particular encounter memorable or somehow more awesome. We would rather avoid forcing players to NPC some number of events, and we also don’t want a player cap as to avoid stress around registering.

To help with this we use voluntary NPC Shifts. An NPC Shift is a time when a player or group of players swaps sides (so to speak) and for a time participate as NPCs so a fight or encounter can properly entertain more PCs. We try to minimize how often we use NPC Shifts because we know it can break immersion, but we feel this technique is the lesser of several evils when we have a situation where the player to NPC ratio is too low to provide adequate entertainment or too low to realize some encounter or battle.

We have two ways that we get volunteers for an NPC Shift. Both are completely voluntary.

First, if we know some encounter is coming up during event planning that will be heavy on NPCs we will contact players or send out a requests to players and schedule an NPC Shift for players willing to do so. The players know what time to report to monster camp, and any change to the time would be communicated to them by staff, probably approaching them as a “farmer” to tell them about the change in schedule.

Scarlet Scouts

Second, there is a special group of characters called the Scarlet Scouts that serve the entirely out of game purpose of gathering PCs and taking them off so they can NPC for us. While this group of mercenary scouts are, in game, hired to gather intel or bring back information for people about specific areas, the group will never bring players to actual adventure. The sole purpose of this group is that players who agree to go on the scouting missions for the Scouts will leave game and take an NPC Shift. This allows staff to come into game and find players who are willing to help us out for a time.

The Scarlet Scouts often wear a red sash, scarf, or tabard. Staff won’t send Scarlet Scouts out to participate in actual plot; it is a mechanism for finding players will to do an NPC shift without breaking game.

 

Sneak Preview – Alchemy

 

This is the sneak preview of the rules for Alchemy. This preview has two sections; the updated section that describes the Alchemy skills, and the chapter that lists both the rules for runes and the runes themselves.

Alchemy

Alchemical substances are magical preparations that can be invoked in the field of battle to create magical effects. In the field you draw the substances from your alchemy kit to use them. Elixirs are fed to the recipient as you call the effect, venoms are applied to a weapon as you call the effect, and packet attacks are thrown after touching the packet to your kit.  This role play makes alchemical substances harder to use that traditional touch cast spells.

Props

To use alchemy, you must maintain two props.

The first is an Alchemy Lab. This in game area is decorated with tools of the trade; examples include vials of materials, a pestle, mixing bowls, instruments, and other props to add atmosphere. The set up must also have an alchemical recipe book which lists the text for all the alchemical substances you know. Once you set up your Alchemy Lab for the event it cannot be moved.

The second prop is an Alchemy Kit. This is a prop you carry that holds all of your substances. It could be an alchemy flask you carry at your hip, or an alchemist’s belt with vials and pouches for holding substances. We encourage players to be creative if they have ideas of their own. Whatever prop you use for your alchemy kit, it should be obvious to other players that it can contain liquids.

Using Alchemy

Simply put, you create substances at your lab and put them into your alchemy kit.

Your Alchemy Kit can hold a maximum of four Fauna, Flora, Mineral, or Spiritus substances, and four Mercurial substances at any one time. Some Fauna, Flora, or Mineral substances are marked as Mercurial in your recipe book. These don’t count against your Fauna, Flora or Mineral limits, but instead provide their own collective pool of substances you can use. When determining the limit of substances in your kit, substances with more than one use still count as one substance when determining how many you can hold in your kit.

To use an elixir, the recipient must role play drinking the substance while you call out the verbal. You can feed it to someone, even if they are paralyzed or unconscious. To use a venom, you must role play applying the venom to the recipient’s weapon while you call out the verbal. To use acid attacks, you must touch the packet to a flask or vial before making the attack.

Creating Substances

There are four types of alchemical substances; Fauna, Flora, Mineral and Spiritus. Creating Fauna substances requires the Fauna Alchemy skill, Flora substances requires the Flora Alchemy skill, and Mineral substances requires the Mineral Alchemy skill. Spiritus substances require the True Alchemy skill.

Substances are generally created by pouring your own magic – in the form of attributes – into the substances and adding them to your kit. Those with the Alchemical Components skill can also use Fauna, Flora, Mineral, and Spiritus components to create substances instead of using their own attributes. These components can be found during the game.

You create one or more substances by spending one minute of focus at your Alchemy Lab. During this time, role play measuring, mixing, and the like. After spending a minute of time at your lab you can add create multiple substances, and fill your alchemy kit if you wish. Once you leave the lab, however, you must once again start the creation process from the beginning.

Normally substances must be added to your own alchemy kit. Only the Alchemist can use the effects of the substances they create. Substances that create Grant effects, however, have magic that can be passed onto others. With the Alchemy skills, you can either use this Grant effect directly on a willing recipient after creation while you are at your lab, or you can add the substance to your alchemy kit and use the Grant effect later when it is needed in battle. Substances can be used on any character if they willingly consume elixirs or allow you to apply venoms to their weapons.

Alchemical substances can be enhanced in two ways.

A Fauna, Flora, or Mineral substance can be created with any component of the proper type. If a substance requires a Flora component, for example, you can use any Flora component to create it. You must have the Alchemize Components skill to consume components during your creation process. Each component also has a descriptive name. By using the exact named component, you can make a more powerful substance. Using the exact named component acts like a catalyst to enhance the magic of the alchemy.

Spiritus substances are created using both Spiritus components and attributes. Both must be used to create these powerful substances.

By using a Spiritus component, you can make tagged substances – which are called bottled alchemy – at the start of game. Bottled substances are powerful in two ways. First, the tagged substance can be given to other characters who can use it even if they do not know alchemy. Second, a bottled substance will last until it is used. The bottled substance will not fade at the end of the event or when you rest to refresh attirbutes. You can hold onto it for multiple events if you want to do that.

Durations

Fauna, Flora, and Mineral substances in your alchemy kit that do not create Grant effects last until you refresh the attribute used to create them. Fauna substances, for example, fade when you use a long rest to refresh your Fire attribute. This is true even if you used Alchemical Components to create them. Substances that create Grant effects follow the normal Grant rules; these effects last until they are used and any unused Grant effects fade at the end of the event. Substances that allow you to use an effect some number of times will fade when you have exhausted all those uses, and any remaining uses will fade when you take a long rest to refresh the Attribute used to create the rune.

Spiritus substances are more powerful. They do not fade when you take a long rest to refresh attributes. They last until the end of the event, unless you use them before then.

Bottled substances will remain as a separate tagged vial and last from event to event until you use them. Bottled substances that create Grant effects follow the normal rules for those effects. Bottled substances that can be used some number of times will last until all remaining uses are exhausted.

 

Alchemical Substances

All characters with Alchemy skills have substances in their Alchemy Recipe Book. Those with Fauna Alchemy have all Fauna substances, those with Flora Alchemy have all Flora substances, those with Mineral Alchemy have all Mineral substance, and those with True Alchemy have all Spiritus substances. If this book is lost you may spend time at your lab recreating it from memory.

 

Fauna Substances

Requirement: Fauna Alchemy

These potions, venoms and salves are stored in your alchemy belt or an alchemy flask. Each substance requires you to use your Fire attribute, or Fauna components in an equal amount if you have the Alchemize Components skill.

 

Acid Flasks

Mercurial: Counts against the Mecurial limit of your kit.

Cost: 1 Fire or Fauna Component

You gain 2 packets attacks.

 “2 Damage by Acid”

 

If you use Ripper Toad Saliva as your component:

You gain 4 packets attacks.

 

You must role play drawing acid vials from your kit, touching the packet to your alchemy kit before you make each throw.

 

Elixir of Splinting

Cost: 1 Fire or 1 Fauna Component

 “Cure Maim by Alchemy”

 

If you use a Bear Tooth as your component:

You gain an additional use.

 

Elixir of Striding

Cost: 1 Fire or 1 Fauna Component

 “Cure Root by Alchemy”

 

If you use a Raven Feather as your component:

You gain an additional use.

 

Venom of Snake Bite

Cost: 1 Fire or 1 Fauna Component

Role play applying this to a blade while you say the verbal.

“Grant Melee Attack by Venom, 3 Damage by Poison”

 

If you use a Shed Snake Skin as your component:

“Grant Melee Attack by Venom, 5 Damage by Poison”

 

Venom of Scorpion Sting

Cost: 1 Fire or 1 Fauna Component

Role play applying this to a blade while you say the verbal.

“Grant Melee Attack by Venom, Agony by Poison”

 

If you use Scorpion Venom as your component:

“Grant Melee Attack by Venom, Agony and 2 Damage by Poison”

 

Flora Substances

Requirement: Flora Alchemy

These elixirs, venoms and salves are stored in your alchemy belt or an alchemy flask. Each substance requires you to use your Water attribute, or Flora components in an equal amount if you have the Alchemize Components skill.

 

Elixir of Good Health

Cost: 1 Water or 1 Flora Component

“Grant Disease Defense by Alchemy, Resist”

 

If you use Periwinkle as your component:

You gain an additional use.

 

Elixir of Healing

Mercurial: Counts against the Mecurial limit of your kit.

Your kit may hold up to 4 Mercurial substances.

Cost: 1 Water or Flora Component

You gain 2 uses.

“Heal 2 by Alchemy”

 

If you use a Goldenseal as your component:

You gain 4 uses.

 

Elixir of Purity

Cost: 1 Water or Flora Component

“Cure Metabolic by Alchemy”

 

If you use Holly as your component:

You gain an additional use.

 

Elixir of Anti-Venom

Cost: 1 Water or Flora Component

“Grant Poison Defense by Alchemy: Shield”

 

If you use a Red Fen Mushroom as your component:

“Grant Poison Defense by Alchemy: Resist”

 

Intoxicant

Cost: 1 Water or 1 Flora Component

You make a whole bottle of some kind of intoxicant. The intoxicant affects everyone who imbibes liquid from the bottle, up to 10 drinks. You must prepare an intoxicant scroll that has the following text and attach it to the bottle.

Intoxicants are special in that you do not add them to your alchemy kit. Instead you create a bottle of spirits or a snuff box of dusts that last until the end of the event. You may work with a character with an appropriate Craftsman skill to create bottles or dusts that last indefinitely if you need a store of intoxicants.

If you imbibe this substance: You become intoxicated. You feel good and as you take more doses you are less and less likely to retain good judgement. If you imbibe a number of doses equal to your Earth, you are likely to become a little wild or overly emotional.

If you exceed your Earth, you are likely to pass out for a time. Real danger will awaken and sober you quickly.

For role play purposes, intoxicants taste or feel different depending on which component was used to create them. Some folks form strong preferences towards a particular type.

 

Mineral Substances

Requirement: Mineral Alchemy

These potions, venoms and salves are stored in your alchemy belt or an alchemy flask. Each substance requires you to use your Earth attribute, or Mineral components in an equal amount if you have the Alchemize Components skill.

 

Elixir of Clarity

Cost: 1 Earth or Mineral Component

“Cure Mental by Alchemy”

 

If you use Moon Silver as your component:

You gain an additional use.

 

Elixir of Stone Skin

Cost: 1 Earth or Mineral Component

“Grant Physical Defense by Alchemy: Shield”

 

If you use Magnetic Iron as your component:

“Grant Physical Defense by Alchemy, Resist by Alchemy”

 

Venom of Blue Lightning

Cost: 2 Earth or Mineral Components

Role play applying this to a blade while you say the verbal.

“Grant Melee Attack by Venom, Short Paralyze by Poison”

 

If you use Mercury as your component:

“Grant Melee Attack by Venom, Paralyze by Poison”

 

Venom of Red Fury

Cost: 2 Earth or Mineral Components

“Grant Melee Attack by Venom: Short Frenzy by Poison”

 

If you use Hot Volcanic Ash as your component:

“Grant Melee Attack by Venom: Frenzy by Poison”

 

Spiritus Substances

Requirement: True Alchemy

These potions, venoms and salves are stored in your alchemy belt or an alchemy flask. Each substance requires you to use both the listed components and the listed attributes. These substances do not fade when you take a long rest to refresh attributes; they will last until the end of the event if you do not use them.

 

Elixir of Life

Cost: Once per event, 1 Void and 2 Spiritus Components

This elixir can be fed to a dead body before it has turned to spirit.

“Cure Death and Drain by Alchemy”

 

If you use at least one Unicorn Tear as your component:

“Cure Death by Alchemy”

 

This substance is so exhausting to create that you can only create one per event. The creation process takes both the Spiritus components and a point of Void.

This substance lasts until the end of the event; it does not fade when you take a long rest.

 

Elixir of the Hearth

Cost: 1 Spiritus Component

You no longer need to spend a point of Earth to use the Wayfare spell, The Safety of Home.

 

This substance lasts until the end of the event; it does not fade when you take a long rest.

 

 

(Updated Alchemy Skills)

Alchemy

Cost: 5

Alchemy is the art of creating magical elixirs, flasks, and even venoms from mundane and magical components. All alchemists maintain an Alchemy Lab to create substances, and you also carry an Alchemy Kit to carry those substances on your person when you leave the lab to adventure. You spend attributes to create the substances within your Alchemy Lab, and place them into your Alchemy Kit as described in the Alchemy chapter. Characters with the Alchemize Components skill can also use alchemical components to make substances.

Although Alchemy has some benefits over normal magic, one disadvantage is that you cannot choose what to cast on the fly. You prepare an array of substances at your lab and those are what you have available as you adventure.

Alchemy is explained in detail in the Alchemy chapter.

You can use Acid as a battle trait, and use it as the trait for attacks from skills that have text allowing you to use battle traits with them.

Alchemize Components

Cost: 2

If you have the Fauna, Flora, or Mineral Alchemy skill you can consume alchemy components instead of attribute points when you create substances using those skills. Each alchemy component is treated as one attribute point; Fauna components can be used for Fire when using Fauna Alchemy, Flora components can be used for Water when using Flora Alchemy, and mineral components can be used for Earth when using Mineral Alchemy. Each event you are limited in how many alchemy components you can consume to make substances; you can use a number of alchemy components in place of attribute points equal to your Air attribute.

Fauna Alchemy

Cost: 5

You can spend points of Fire in your lab to create alchemical substances with the Fauna identifier. Your recipe book now has formulas for all Fauna recipes in this rule book. Spend one minute at your alchemy lab, choose one or more common alchemical substances with the Fauna identifier, and store them in your alchemy kit. Only you can use these substances, and their magic fades when you take a long rest.

Flora Alchemy

Cost: 5

You can spend points of Water in your lab to create alchemical substances with the Flora identifier. Your recipe book now has formulas for all Flora recipes in this rule book. Spend one minute at your alchemy lab, choose one or more common alchemical substances with the Flora identifier, and store them in your alchemy kit. Only you can use these substances, and their magic fades when you take a long rest.

Mineral Alchemy

Cost: 5

You can spend points of Earth in your lab to create alchemical substances with the Mineral identifier. Your recipe book now has formulas for all Mineral recipes in this rule book. Spend one minute at your alchemy lab, choose one or more common alchemical substances with the Mineral identifier, and store them in your alchemy kit. Only you can use these substances, and their magic fades when you take a long rest.

True Alchemy

Cost: 5

Requirement: Fauna, Flora, or Mineral Alchemy

You can create alchemical substances with the Spiritus identifier. Your recipe book now has formulas for all Spiritus recipes in this rule book. Spend one minute at your alchemy lab, choose one or more common alchemical substances with the Spiritus identifier, and store them in your alchemy kit. Only you can use these substances, and their magic fades at the end of the event.

You can also use True Alchemy recipes to create permanent alchemical substances that you can trade and that do not expire at the end of the event. This process usually takes days; you create your substances and consume components at check in at the start an event. It is possible, though uncommon, to encounter a Spirit of Alchemy during an event that will allow players to use True Alchemy in minutes instead of days, allowing players to make these substances during the course of an event. These substances have game tags associated with them and unlike other types of alchemical substances they can be traded to other players and used without any Alchemy skill.

Resist Toxicity

Cost: 3

You are used to dealing with all manner of toxic substances and materials. Once per short rest you may call out “Resist” to negate one Acid or Poison attack.

 

 

 

Sneak Preview – Runes

This is the sneak preview of the rules for Runes. This preview has two sections; the updated section that describes the Runeforging skills, and the chapter that lists both the rules for runes and the runes themselves.

Runeforging

 

Runeforging

Cost: 5

You may have an additional Earth, Fire, or Water rune etched on your person. Characters are normally limited to a maximum of one of each.

You create magical runes from both common elements and exotic True Elements. In order to use Runeforging you must have a forge where you create and carve your runes. This forge is decorated with a book of Runes and other trappings to make the area look good and add atmosphere. Once you set up this forge for the event it cannot be moved.

Your book of runes should contain the descriptions of all the runes you might use for reference. This is particularly important if a Spirit of the Forge visits your forge and empowers you to consume True Elemental Void to give runes to other characters as they will need to consult the book to read what the effect of your runes are if they do not create a Grant effect.

Runes are divided into three types. Earth runes are carved onto armor. Fire runes are carved onto weapons. Water runes are carved so as to leave a crystalline or metallic symbol on your flesh without scarring the flesh or drawing blood. You spend attributes to etch these runes on your equipment or your flesh. Characters skilled at Runeforging can use True Elements instead of attributes to carve runes, and can create True Runes that can be stored and used by other characters.

The full rules for Runes and the list of Runes you can create is presented in the Runes chapter later in this rule book.

Forge True Elements

Cost: 2

Requirement: Earth, Fire or Water Runeforging

If you have the Earth, Fire or Water Runeforging skill you can consume True Elements instead of attribute points when you create runes using those skills. Each True Element is treated as one attribute point; True Earth can be used for Earth when using Earth Runeforging, True Fire can be used for Fire when using Fire Runeforging, and True Water can be used for Water when using Water Runeforging. Each event you are limited in how many True Elements you can consume to make Runes; you can use a number of True Elements in place of attribute points equal to your Air attribute. Even though you used True Elements to forge these runes, they last until you use a long rest to refresh the corresponding attribute.

Earth Runeforging

Cost: 5

You can spend points of Earth at your forge to create Earth Runes. Your Book of Runes now has formulas for all Earth Runes in this rule book. Spend one minute at your forge, choose one or more Earth Runes, and forge them onto a piece of armor. Only you can use these Runes (although Runes that themselves create a beneficial effect can be used on others) and their magic fades when you take a long rest to refresh your Earth.

Fire Runeforging

Cost: 5

You can spend points of Fire at your forge to create Fire Runes. Your Book of Runes now has formulas for all Fire Runes in this rule book. Spend one minute at your forge, choose one or more Fire Runes, and forge them onto a weapon. Only you can use these Runes (although Runes that themselves create a beneficial effect can be used on others) and their magic fades when you take a long rest to refresh your Fire.

Water Runeforging

Cost: 5

You can spend points of Water at your forge to create Water Runes. Your Book of Runes now has formulas for all Water Runes in this rule book. Spend one minute at your forge, choose one or more Water Runes, and forge them onto your body and spirit. These runes create a crystalline or metallic symbol on your skin without drawing blood. Only you can use these Runes (although Runes that themselves create a beneficial effect can be used on others) and their magic fades when you take a long rest to refresh your Water.

True Runeforging

Cost: 2

Requirement: Earth, Fire or Water Runeforging

You can consume True Elemental Void to create True Runes (the game term for tagged runes) that you can trade and forge onto others. While dormant, True Runes do not expire at the end of an event. This process usually takes days; you create your runes and consume True Elements at check in at the start an event. It is possible, though uncommon, to encounter a Spirit of the Forge during an event that will allow players to use True Runeforging in minutes instead of days, allowing players to make these runes during the course of an event. These Runes have game tags associated with them and unlike other types of Runes they can be traded to other players and used without any Runeforging skill.

Weapon Knowledge

Cost: 3

You have a better understanding of the weight and structure of the weapons you use. Once per short rest you may call out “Resist” to negate one Destroy or Disarm attack. This skill has no attribute cost.

 

Chapter Four – Runes

Runes are magical symbols etched onto the surface of weapons, armor, or flesh that can be invoked in the field of battle to create magical effects. Runes etched onto the flesh create a crystalline symbol on the skin which is sustained by magic; Runesmiths have learned techniques to place these runes without drawing blood or scarring the flesh. Runes are created using the Runeforging skills, and can be forged by either pouring your own magic – in the form of attributes – into the runes. Those with the Forge True Elements skill can also use components called True Elements to create runes instead of using their own attributes. These True Elements are treasures that can be found during the game.

Runes are created by either spending Earth, Fire or Water attribute points, or spending the same number of the corresponding True Elements. You create one or more runes by spending one minute of focus at your forge, role playing the forging. After spending a minute of time forging you can create a whole batch of runes. Once you leave the forge, however, you must once again start the forging from the beginning.

Normally runes can only be etched on your own weapons, armor, or flesh. Only the Runesmiths can use the effects of the runes they forge. Runes that create Grant effects, however, have magic that can be passed onto others. With Runeforging, you can either use this Grant effect directly on a willing recipient after your forging while you are at your forge, or you can etch the rune onto yourself and use the Grant effect later when it is needed in battle. Runes only affect the Runesmiths, but Grant effects from Runes can be used on others.

Runes can be enhanced in two ways.

By using True Elemental Air, you can make a more powerful rune. You must have the Forge True Elements skill to consume True Elemental Air during your forging. True Elemental Air acts like a catalyst to heat the forge and enhance the magic of the rune. Although you can spend Earth, Fire, or Water attributes or True Elements to create a Rune and enhance it with True Elemental Air, you cannot use your Air attribute for this forging; enhancing a rune requires you to consume actual True Elemental Air.

By using True Elemental Void, you can make tagged runes which are called True Runes in game. True Runes are powerful in two ways. First, the tagged rune remains dormant until you forge the rune on yourself or another character and hand the tag to them. This means that the tagged Rune will last until it is used. The dormant rune will not fade at the end of the event. You can hold onto it for multiple events if you want to do that. Once you forge the rune onto a character then the resulting rune will last until the end of the event. Second, you can forge Runes directly onto other characters and hand them the tagged Rune even if they are not Grant effects. This allows someone who does not know Runeforging to have some of the more interesting runes that are not Grant effects.

All of the runes in this book are available to characters with the corresponding Runeforging skill. It is rumored that other runes exist; tales have passed from Runesmith to Runesmith about runes that can be forged onto portals, and runes created from Chaos itself.

You cannot forge a rune unless you have the game description of the rune in your Book of Runes.

Durations

Runes that do not create Grant effects last until you refresh the attribute used to create them. Water runes, for example, fade when you use a long rest to refresh your Water attribute. This is true even if you used True Elements to carve them. Runes that create Grant effects follow the normal Grant rules; these effects last until they are used any unused Grant effects fade at the end of the event. Runes that allow you to use an effect some number of times will fade when you have exhausted all those uses, and any remaining uses will fade when you take a long rest to refresh the Attribute used to create the rune.

True Runes (the game name for tagged Runes) are different. While dormant, True Runes last until used. They will remain dormant and last from event to event until you use them. Once a True Rune is etched and you invoke its power the duration changes. Runes that create Grant effects follow the normal rules for those effects. Runes that create an ongoing effect will fade at the end of the event. Runes that can be used some number of times to create an effect will last until those effects are used, but rune will fade at the end of the event even if uses remain.

Earth Runes

Requirement: Earth Runeforging

These runes are etched onto your armor. Each rune requires you to use your Earth attribute, or True Elemental Earth in an equal amount if you have the Forge True Elements skill.

 

Rune of Armor

Cost: 1 Earth

You may only have one Earth Rune.

“With this rune, Grant Protection by Fire.”

If enhanced by 1 True Elemental Air:

You gain an additional armor point, up to the maximum allowed by your armor prop. This is not a Grant effect, and will not increase your armor beyond the maximum for your prop.

 

Rune of Deflection

Cost: 2 Earth

You may only have one Earth Rune.

“Grant Melee Defense: Guard by Rune.”

If enhanced by 2 True Elemental Air:

“Grant Melee Defense: Parry by Rune.”

 

Rune of Elemental Warding

Cost: 1 Earth

You may only have one Earth Rune.

“Grant Elemental Defense: Shield by Rune.”

If enhanced by 1 True Elemental Air:

“Grant Elemental Defense: Resist by Rune.”

 

Rune of Forging

Cost: 2 Earth

You may only have one Earth Rune.

You may use this rune 4 times before it fades. Touch a recipient with physical armor and call out “With this rune, Repair 1 Armor by Fire.”

If enhanced by 2 True Elemental Air:

You may use this rune 8 times before it fades. Touch a recipient with physical armor and call out “With this rune, Repair 1 Armor by Fire.”

 

Rune of Repair

Cost: 1 Earth

You may only have one Earth Rune.

Call out “With this Rune, Repair 2 Armor” to refresh your armor points.

If enhanced by 1 True Elemental Air:

Call out “With this Rune, Repair All Armor” to refresh your armor points.

 

Fire Runes

Requirement: Fire Runeforging

These runes are etched onto your weapons. Each rune requires you to use your Fire attribute, or True Elemental Fire in an equal amount if you have the Forge True Elements skill.

 

Rune of Adamantine

Cost: 1 Fire

You may only have one Fire Rune.

Call out “With this Rune, Resist” to negate the next Destroy effect used on your weapon.

If enhanced by 1 True Elemental Air:

Call out “With this Rune, Resist” to negate the next two Destroy effects used on your weapon.

 

Rune of Iron Grip

Cost: 1 Fire

You may only have one Fire Rune.

Call out “With this Rune, Resist” to negate the next Disarm effect used on your weapon.

If enhanced by 1 True Elemental Air:

Call out “With this Rune, Resist” to negate the next two Disarm effects used on your weapon.

 

Rune of Sharpness

Cost: 1 Fire

You may only have one Fire Rune.

“Grant Melee Attack: 3 Damage by Force”

If enhanced by 1 True Elemental Air:

“Grant Melee Attack: 5 Damage by Force”

 

Rune of the Spellcaster

Cost: 1 Fire

You may only have one Fire Rune.

You may use this rune 3 times before it fades. You may cast a packet or touch delivered spell while holding this weapon in your off hand. Blocking with this weapon interrupts your spell.

If enhanced by 1 True Elemental Air:

You may cast packet or touch delivered spells while holding this weapon in your off hand. Blocking with this weapon interrupts your spell.

 

Rune of Sharpness

Cost: 1 Fire

You may only have one Fire Rune.

“Grant Melee Attack: 3 Damage by Force”

If enhanced by 1 True Elemental Air:

“Grant Melee Attack: 5 Damage by Force”

 

Rune of Shock

Cost: 1 Fire

You may only have one Fire Rune.

“Grant Melee Attack: Agony by Lightning”

If enhanced by 1 True Elemental Air:

“Grant Melee Attack: Double Agony by Lightning”

 

Water Runes

Requirement: Water Runeforging

These runes are etched as crystalline or metallic symbols onto your skin. Each rune requires you to use your Water attribute, or True Elemental Water in an equal amount if you have the Forge True Elements skill.

 

Rune of Healing

Cost: 1 Water

You may only have one Water Rune.

“Grant Touch Attack: Heal 2 by Rune.”

If enhanced by 1 True Elemental Air:

“Grant Touch Attack: Heal 4 by Rune.”

 

Rune of Regeneration

Cost: 1 Water

You may only have one Water Rune.

You may use this rune once. After a short rest, call out “With this rune, Heal All” to heal yourself.

If enhanced by 1 True Elemental Air:

You may use this rune 3 times. After a short rest, call out “With this rune, Heal All” to heal yourself.

 

Rune of Regrowth

Cost: 3 Water

You may only have one Water Rune.

You may use this rune 4 times before it fades. You may add 1 to one Heal effect of 2 or more that you use on other characters.

If enhanced by 3 True Elemental Air:

You may add 1 to any Heal effect of 2 or more that you use on other characters.

 

Rune of Luck

Cost: 2 Water

You may only have one Water Rune.

One time during the event you may call out “With this rune, Stabilize” when you are unstable and your death count is running out.

If enhanced by 2 True Elemental Air:

One time during the event you may change your state from Unstable to Stable. You need not call out an effect. You need not wait until you are about to die to use this ability.

 

Rune of the Weaponmaster

Cost: 1 Water

You may only have one Water Rune.

If you are unskilled with a particular melee weapon or shield, you may bind this rune to that item. You may use it in combat as if you had the skill to use it.

If enhanced by 1 True Elemental Air:

You may use any melee weapon or shield in combat. You may also fight with a pair of one-handed, long sword sized weapons at the same time.

Sneak Preview – The Pale

This is a sneak preview of the Pale mythos and presents background information for players who follow the Pale.

The Wild Ways of the Pale

“The Wild Ways,” the verdant spring zephyrs whisper, “will never be forgotten.”

“For the Wild Ways,” the golden sunrise of summer rejoices, “are the ways of the world.”

“Like all things, however,” the russety autumn leaves warn, “the Wild Ways ebb and flow.”

“And so to understand the Wild Ways,” the howling winter winds caution, “the people must accept the things that have withered, and the things yet to grow.”

“And so,” the seasons call together, “will the Pale live forever.”

A Pray of the Pale

Before the Fading

When the war ended, and the Night of Screams had passed, the structure of the Pale – the druids and archdruids – weakened. The councils and circles of the times before and during the War disintegrated, and the once reassuring hierarchy was no more. However, with the creation of the Two Trees, the whispers of the Green, Gold, and Gray were felt. In some ways, following the War, people found themselves more in tune with the ways of the Pale than they ever had been before. The teachers of the Wild Ways, the druidic heroes, had taken their knowledge, and passed it to those seeking the comfort of the Pale. War had demonstrated that the Pale was resilient, and, in times of great strife, the Gifted could turn to whispers of nature. Bolstered by the sylph sisters and Lord Liendra, the druids, particularly those who had once ventured in Shadowfane, taught to the world the Wild Ways: the world, once more, came to understand the Cycle of life and death, the potency of the seasons, and the hidden songs echoing throughout the natural world. This new Pale, centered on the Cycle and the Wild Ways, served as the new shape of worship. As the centuries passed, the structures of the time before the War transformed. It was, however, fundamentally altered by the Fading of the Fae.

After the Fading

When the Fae Faded from the world, the followers of the Wild Ways were bereft. The sylph Sisters and Liendra were believed gone, as were the other Fae Lords and Ladies who had led them. Those remaining could no longer hear the songs of Faerie. Rather than falling to despair, as some of the Elves did, however, the remaining followers of the Pale decided to return to the roots of the old teachings: The Wild Ways. They returned, seemingly abandoned by the Fae, to the natural world.

They were not alone, however, in this task. The heroes of the Old Times, those of old Shadowfane and their allies, had made protections. Even as these heroes passed from the world, their teachings lasted. While the specific nature of these protections is unknown in contemporary Pale worship, it is certain that the sanctified spaces – the Groves – are, at least in part, connected to the actions of the past.

The Old Ways, the times before the Fading, are gone, but the Pale has remained.

Over centuries, the people, buoyed by the old knowledge, once more realized that the natural world is full of free spirits. With the wonder and curiosity of children, the people learned how to make use of the earth once more. They realized that spirits dwell all around, in everything that is not bound by the hands of the Gifted. They swirl in the trees, the earth, the rivers, and the wind. They people came to once more understand that the veil that separates this world from the spirit world is called the Pale. Those of the Pale learned to listen and watch around them, tracking the spirits of the Pale. They learned to call out to the spirits directly, inviting them into the worlds of the Gifted. They watched the world around them until they instinctively knew where the Pale was thinnest.

As the Wild Ways of the Pale, after the Fading, continued to take shape, the new Druids came to, once more, understand the Pale. The heart of the Pale, it has long been said, is represented by the Tree of Green, the Tree of Grey, and the Gold spirits that guard them. The Tree of Green is the embodiment of the Spring and Summer months, of cool, replenishing rains and warm summer days. The Tree of Grey, it has long been said, holds the Fall and Winter months, a natural balance to its brother and the unyielding harshness of the natural world.

As the Wild Ways continued, the Druids came to understand that, within the spirits of Green, Grey, and Gold, so too were the seasons important. New leaders of the Pale, deeply infused with the spirits of the Wild Ways, emerged. These individuals, though seemingly more powerful than the mortals that seek them out, called – and continue to call – themselves the Teachers. They align themselves with the four seasons, and, more importantly, the times of transition between these seasons. Their teachings, passed down for thousands of years, have become the way of the Pale: The Wild Ways of the Cycle. In contemporary practice, while every Druid and follower of the Pale align themselves with a specific season, more importantly, they keep in mind the constant cycle and transition of life.

The most sacred spaces of the Pale are the Groves. There is, it is said, a singular First Grove for the Two Trees. In this First Grove, the Pale is at its thinnest: this Grove exists somewhere known only, if it exists, to the Teachers and the spirits. Supplementary to this Grove are the eight Groves of the Seasons. The Teachers lead the eight main Groves, which serve as the focal points of contemporary Pale worship. While many Pale followers will never be able to visit all, or even one, of these Groves, the Teachers often make their own pilgrimages to visit followers: to meet a Teacher, who have become increasingly rare, is to fulfill what is, for many Pale followers, a lifelong goal. Since the Teachers, much like the spirits of the Pale themselves, wander the world, frequently Pale followers visit the Groves when it is not attended by a Teacher. To visit one of these Groves in the height of its season is to attempt to connect to a heightened part of the Pale. In addition to the Eight Groves, there are also the Seasons’ Groves, which are local, smaller groves run by Druids who are not Teachers. These smaller Groves are places that, at one time, have been visited by one of the Teachers, or a pilgrim has apprenticed at one of the Eight Groves for the duration of at least ten years.

The Groves and Teachers are the following places and individuals. It is said that each of the Teachers has a title, as a teacher, but also a true name locked deep within the Pale. These Teachers help the different communities of Pale followers to organize their lives. They also help perpetuate and practice the living mythology of the Pale.

The Grove of Late Winter: The Hunter of Consequences

A brutal and relentless Teacher, the Hunter of Consequences seeks out injustices that have remained unmetered throughout the year– he teaches Pale followers the justice of the wild; he also leads hunts to thin herds, and kill off the weak and sick animals to make way for the new spring births. The Hunter also leads the Hunt of Consequences: a yearlong hunt wherein the Druids of Winter decide on those who have violated the sanctity of the Pale, and must be brought to justice.

The Hunter of Consequences aligns himself with the Grove of Late Winter, located in Winterwold. Only pine trees, laden with ice and snow, grow in this Grove. It is a place both beautiful and austere, and only the grimmest Druids of Winter linger in it overly long. The near silent whiteness of the snow-covered Grove is marred only by the red blood of the Winter’s first kills. The Hunter of Consequences presents as an ice-scarred elf, and is particularly respected by the Snowcrown elves.

The Grove of Early Spring: The Lady of Names

A secretive and compassionate Teacher, the Lady of Names gives a name to the new year, death names to those who have died, and life names to the new births. Because the Lady of Names knows the names of the new year’s animals and plants, she calls them forward to be pursued by the people. Additionally, based on the whispers of nature, and the secrets of the people, she names a few chosen Gifted that will remain protected against the Hunts of Consequence. While she can be influenced, the Lady of Names keeps her reason for acknowledging these Chosen to herself.

The Grove of Early Spring, where the New Year of Early Spring is celebrated, is located in the Silken Call. The Lady’s cottage, of dark, intricately carved wood is elegant, and surrounded by plum trees in perpetual full blossom. The Lady of Names presents as a Spidersilk elf, and is a patron to Pale followers in the Silken Call.

The Grove of Late Spring: The Storm Seeker

The Storm Seeker helps to plan the growing and harvesting season, and has taught the people how to brace against Storms that would do them injury. The Storm Seeker has also taught the people how to navigate the natural world in even the fiercest of storms. Capricious and audacious, the Storm Seeker offers a challenge to the bravest among the Gifted: if they are able to survive the monsoons, tempests, and hurricanes of the late Spring, the Storm Seeker offers them boons to protect them against the Hunts of Consequence and the Starving Hunts.

The Storm Seeker’s Grove is located on an island between the coasts of the Seven Charter isles and Belaingarde. This dangerous Grove of Cypress trees is perpetually surrounded by tempests. The Storm Seeker prefers to avoid gendering themselves, and presents as an Air Eurvein.

The Grove of Early Summer: The Tree Weaver

A removed and neutral Teacher, the Tree Weaver watches the trials of the winter and spring, and, in the early summer, weaves the stories and dreams of the people into the branches of trees. The Tree Weaver has taught the people the power of storytelling, and how such storytelling can help them survive from generation to generation. The stories that the Tree Weaver leaves influence the Hunt of Consequences, and the Naming of the Worthy in the New Year.

The Grove of Early Summer, protected by dreams against nightmares, is located in Kyrzenwold. It resembles the Grove of the Lady of Names, though thousands of candles are placed in the boughs of the Grove’s green oaks. Through the branches of these trees are woven the stories of the year. The Tree Weaver is also a Spidersilk Elf, however, upon her skin, manifestations of patchwork quilts, resembling those of the Tatterfolk, appear in the webbing over her face.

The Grove of Late Summer: The Spearman

A patient though distant teacher, the Spearman comes after the heaviest of the summer rains, and, in the clear rains of late summer, leads the people in the largest fishing expedition of the year. The Spearman and the Husk Maiden both caution people against the “arrogance of Bounty,” and have taught them how to preserve meats should blight or illness strike crops and animals. The lessons of the Spearman, if followed, protect against the hungry times.

The Grove of Late Summer is located along one of the rivers between Vellingrim and Belaingarde. His Grove, surrounded by willows that bow heavily into the water, resembles a simple fishing camp. The Spearman presents as a human, frequently in fisherman’s garb.

The Grove of Early Fall: The Husk Maiden

At the beginning of the Autumn, the Husk Maiden brings bounty to the people: she has taught them how to harvest and prepare the grains that sustain settlements. As the Autumn wanes on, however, the Husk Maiden reminds the people of the coming lean times, and the arrogance of the previous age’s Bounty: she acknowledges the weak and sick who, if the Starving Hunts are not successful, will fall to the Hunts of Consequence. The self-sacrificing Teacher, she lives in starvation throughout the entire year, so as to provide food for some deemed worthy by the Lady of Names.

The Husk Maiden has no stationary Grove, and, as a Teacher much loved by the Tatterfolk, is always moving from place to place, teaching those searching for food how to better search. The Husk Maiden presents as a Harvester Grotesque resembling a cornhusk doll- it is said that one can tell if she has visited a place, since she will leave behind many cornhusk dolls.

The Grove of Late Fall: The Starving Huntress

A wild and unpredictable Teacher, the Starving Huntress is always hungry, and always hunting. She comes to her full power in the late autumn, and leads the people in the last great hunt before the hunger of Winter. Part ritual and part necessity, the Starving Hunts are a time of incredible activity and violence. During the late fall, the hunting groups are at their most active.

The Grove of Late Fall is located in the depths of Khoros, and is surrounded by the blood red maples of Autumn. The Starving Huntress presents as a Korred of Autumn, and is known for the blood with which she decorates her face.

The Grove of Early Winter: The Fire Keeper

A warm and loving Teacher, the Fire Keeper steadies the people against the hungry and lean times: she has taught them how to ready their houses against the cold, and how to prepare warm clothes. She invites people to revel in the joy of community, and the warmth and grace that Winter brings. She retells the stories the Tree Weaver has chosen, and reminds the people of the lessons of the Husk Maiden, the Storm Seeker, and the Spearman.

The Fire Keeper’s Grove is located in the mountain peaks between Winterwold and Morgrave. It is called the First Hearth, and is surrounded by leafless birch trees. In the middle of the Grove is the Fire Keeper’s cottage: a welcoming place whose windows always gleam with lit candles. The Fire Keeper is a shoathri: her animal form is not known, but it is assumed that it is an animal able to endure the cold of winter.

A warm and loving Teacher, the Fire Keeper steadies the people against the hungry and lean times: she has taught them how to ready their houses against the cold, and how to prepare warm clothes. She invites people to revel in the joy of community, and the warmth and grace that Winter brings. She retells the stories the Tree Weaver has chosen, and reminds the people of the lessons of the Husk Maiden, the Storm Seeker, and the Spearman.

The Fire Keeper’s Grove is located in the mountain peaks between Winterwold and Morgrave. It is called the First Hearth, and is surrounded by leafless birch trees. In the middle of the Grove is the Fire Keeper’s cottage: a welcoming place whose windows always gleam with lit candles. The Fire Keeper is a shoathri: her animal form is not known, but it is assumed that it is an animal able to endure the cold of winter.

Sneak Preview – The Woven Faith

Here is the preview for the Woven Faith, and the Thread-Bearers that bless the priests of the mythos. As will all sneak previews, the information here is subject to change.

The Woven Faith

Introduction

Long ago, divine power was woven into the Tapestry by Ciarda, Fainche, and Sciath; the three sisters of Fate. This Divine inspiration is all that is left of the Divine sacrifice made at the end of the last age. It is woven into the Tapestry as light, and as song, and as fire that brings warmth to the virtuous and yet burns those who are corrupt. You are devoted to the Woven Faith, and your faith is dedicated to preserving and strengthening these threads of Divine inspiration.

Each strand or thread of Divine inspiration is guarded by divine beings, saints and angels who have risen since those elder days. These divine beings are called the Thread-Bearers, for they are the guardians and caretakers of the Divine inspiration and its threads. Although Priests of the Woven Faith are devoted to the Divine inspiration and call upon it for their magic and faith, the Thread-Bearers seek out and choose Priests to act as their champions and aspirants, though their choices are sometimes inscrutable to the faithful who are chosen.

To those devoted to the Woven Faith, and the Thread-Bearers, the Divine Inspiration can manifest and be experienced in three ways. The Divine Light inspires thought, clarity, and leadership and this Light is represented by the Crown. The Divine Song inspires resolve, passion, and redemption and this Song is represented by the Harp. The Divine Fire inspires courage, justice, and purity and this Fire is represented by the Sword.

To understand the Woven Faith, one must view the divine sphere as an infinite battlefield between Light and Darkness. On the Night of Sacrifice, when the divine purpose was gathered so it would not fade from the world, the faithful were called upon to guard those threads. It is not only the faithful that can feel that divine energy. The Lord of the Underworld – the fallen god Beleghast – covets these divine threads. If he can gather to himself enough of that divine energy, his followers claim, he can rise from the Labyrinth, ascend to the Heavens, and become a god to rival the Three Sisters.

Beleghast, his host of demons, and the cults that worship them are constantly plotting to increase their presence and power in the world, but the ultimate purpose of Beleghast is to corrupt the divine threads. When a thread becomes corrupted, its divine purpose is twisted and no longer strengthens the Tapestry, but instead descends into the Labyrinth where Beleghast ultimately gathers it to strengthen himself. Each corrupted thread becomes entwined with a powerful demon who must guard that thread and prevent those of the Woven Faith from finding the thread, defeating the demon, and restoring the purified thread to a Thread-Bearer.

This constant battle to purify or corrupt the threads of the Divine inspiration has created an endless war between the Heavens and the Underworld.

Light and Shadow

The act of weaving the Divine inspiration into the Tapestry was like a great symphony, and the Divine energies took a life of its own. Countless threads touched all corners of the Tapestry, and the Three Sisters strengthened both the Tapestry and the Divine inspiration. The weave was allowed to spread throughout the Tapestry; Beleghast and his demons had not yet begun to pull at the threads.

When the Divine war began, and some of the threads became unwoven, the Sisters bequeathed threads to the most devote and faithful to guard them. These individuals made the ultimate sacrifice, accepting guardianship of the Divine thread knowing full well that they would forever be drawn in the war with the Underworld. The Thread-Bearers gave up their lives and Gifts to become saints and angels; Divine beings that have become entwined with the Divine inspiration. The Divine thread strengthens each Thread-Bearer differently, taking that being’s foundation of faith and using that concept to add to the Divine inspiration as a whole.

Not all Thread-Bearers receive that responsibility from the Sisters themselves. In the Divine War, some who hold unswerving yet unorthodox faith – or grim purpose – have given their lives to purify the Threads, and in death they have carried one of the Threads to the hereafter. These Thread-Bearers are not chosen by the Sisters or by Divine inspiration; rather they have inherited the responsibility either willingly or unwillingly rather than give up the thread to the agents of the Underworld.

Those Thread-Bearers that have been chosen by either the Three Sisters or the Divine inspiration itself are called the Thread-Bearers of Light. The others, Thread-Bearers who have inherited threads and have never earned the blessing of the Three Sisters or the other Thread-Bearers, are called the Thread-Bearers of Shadow. Although these Thread-Bearers have confidence in their own faith and have strength of purpose, their guardianship has been thrust upon them as a result of the Divine War.

While these are the Thread-Bearers that are known to bless Priests with divine power, there are rumors that other Thread-Bearers exist.

 

The Thread-Bearers of Light

 

The Agrarian

The sun beats down on those who work the land, dam and shift streams to water their crops, and bend the primordial will of the land to produce food to sustain not only themselves and their families but the vast cities as well.

Skin tanned, clothes worn, heels of their boots ground down, these noble men and women do one of the greatest services to mankind that there is. However, the do not dress in finery, no one knows their names, no one gives them much thought, and they prefer it that way. There is honor in what they do, but no one needs to tell them that.

The Agrarian was one of these men. What did he farm? Where did he live? When? These questions have been asked for centuries but answers have never been discovered. Though people wish to know, the Agrarian, it seems, remains as humble as he did in life.

Those who have the Agrarian as their patron are often, but not always, farmers themselves. For some, it is recognizing what he stands for and what he inspires. Not everyone needs fancy clothes, fame, and fortune. Those who seek a humbler existence often attract the attention of the Agrarian.

A small satchel or pouch of seeds is the symbol of the Agrarian’s faithful. It reminds them that all things have a humble beginning.

“Life is humility.”

The Crown – Bountiful Harvest

Each event you may host a feast. During this feast you may give your favor to up to five participants. The people who receive your blessing will be nourished by your magic and need not pay for maintenance the next event.

You create a personalized favor of some kind that you present to the recipients to carry your magic. The favor can be a scroll, plaque, or some other token to represent your bountiful blessing. The favor must have the words Bountiful Harvest upon it, and your name as well.

The recipients will turn in your tokens at check in to pay for maintenance. You are welcome to pick up turned in tokens from check in so you can re-use them; but you should also have some extras in case some are lost.

The Harp – Well Fed, Good Health

Spend a point of Air, touch the recipient, and call out either “Cure Disease by Faith” or “Cure Poison by Faith.”

The Sword –  Reap What You Sow

Your work provides you with exceptional health. Once per event you may call out “Resist” to negate one Death effect.

 

The Dreamcatcher

The world of dreams can be wistful and wonderful but dangers lurk there as well; even those disguised in pleasant wrappers. The bliss of dreams can lure those who yearn for something better from the real world only to be caught in the suffocating grasp of nightmares. The Dreamcatcher guards against all the dangers of the dream realm and teaches those how to embrace the joy and skirt the dangers. For some who wish to master the Dreaming, the lessons are even more complex and fraught…

Some who have the Dreamcatcher as a patron wish to act as guides and mentors to dreams and the Dreaming. Others wish to explore the limitless realm of dreams in a lifelong attempt to unravel the mysteries of the Dreaming in a quest of enlightenment and empowerment. Others wish to learn about any and all things that can be found in the land of dreams for their own pleasures and purposes.

The Nightmare Realm will always exist while the Gifted Races have fearful dreams, but without a malevolence to drive it that place has long swirled and ebbed far from the Dreaming. However, recently, small vortexes of nightmares have appeared in the Dreaming. Many followers of the Dreamcatcher have made it their mission to investigate the cause and to cure this blight.

The moon or stars are used as symbols of the Dreamcatcher. They can be in the form of jewelry, embroidered on clothing or a swatch of fabric, or even take other forms.

“Life is hope.”

The Crown – Dream Speaker

You may use the Chimera spell, Send Dreams, two additional times per event.

The Harp – Awaken, My Friend

Spend a point of Air, touch the recipient, and call out either “Cure Sleep by Faith” or “Cure Fear by Faith.”

The Sword –  Dream Walker

While you are in the Dreaming, spend a point of Air, touch the recipient, and call out one of the following: “Refresh Earth by Dream,” “Refresh Fire by Dream,” or “Refresh Water by Dream.”

 

The Erudite

Life is a thinking person’s game; a series of philosophical and intellectual conundrums to be solved. Only in seeking the answers to the greatest mysteries of the world can one find their true path. Faith without understanding is blind.

You seek out the mysteries of the world, and value discussion with both allies and enemies. Even the most deceitful of demons reveal truths if one is keen enough to listen to the meaning behind their words. The Erudite seeks truths in light and darkness, revealing knowledge that was hidden from the world and the faith.

The symbol of the Erudite is rolled scroll that records knowledge that holds a particular importance to you. The scroll is tied with gold ribbon or rope.

“Life is Knowledge.”

The Crown – The Voice of Reason

Three times per event, you may use one of the following abilities.

Choose one of the following traits; Dead, Demon, Nightmare, Undead. Loudly call out “By My Voice, Expose [Trait] by Divine.”

Or…

Choose one of the following traits; Dead, Demon, Nightmare, Spirit, Undead. Point at a creature and call out “By My Gesture, Speak with [Trait].”

Sometimes the most powerful creatures will recognize the divine providence of this ability, and this ability might convince creatures to speak with you when they might not have otherwise done so.

The Harp – A Keen Intellect

Spend a point of Air, touch the recipient, and call out either “Cure Confusion by Faith” or “Cure Will by Faith.”

The Sword –  Reasoned Preparation

After taking each long rest, choose Earth, Fire, or Water. If you refreshed that attribute as part of your long rest, the attribute is increased by 1 until the next time you refresh it. You can only have one attribute increased by this skill at any one time; if you use this skill again all previous effects end immediately.

 

The Ironclad

Legends are wide and varied, and debates are passionate and vigorous, about the origins of the armored Ironclad. Did he bear his armor with him on charges to break the enemy lines, soaking punishment so others could collapse the defense of enemies of the Faith? Was he an armored healer who ran out after the fallen, being gravely punished in the process, to save them? Was he an armored juggernaut who stood like a monolith as his armor was shattered and his flesh rendered while protecting a stronghold of the faith?

The truth is, no one knows.

Those who have The Ironclad as a patron usually want to serve by protecting others using all they have including their very bodies. For those who follow this Thread­bearer, there is nothing they won’t do in service to others or to a cause. Or, at least, that is their goal.

The symbol of the Ironclad is a gauntlet.

“Life is sacrifice”

The Crown – Eye of the Storm

Once per short rest, if you are wielding a weapon, spend 1 point of Air to use the Disengage effect.

The Harp – Stay True to the Fight

Spend a point of Air, and call out “Resist” to negate an attack with Fear or Confusion as a trait.

The Sword –  My Faith is my Armor

Once per long rest, call out “Refresh All Armor by Faith” to restore all of your armor points. This ability has no attribute cost.

 

Ma Daya

Family, whether blood or chosen, exemplifies everything meaningful about life. Everyone has a role to play and Ma Daya was the matron of her chosen family. It is amazing how much trouble a group of young adventurers can get into. She was there with calming words, bandages, wise council, and a caring embrace. Ma Daya was one of the pillars of her family and one that made them able to succeed and saved them when failure seemed imminent.

Those who have Ma Daya as a patron usually want to act as one of the pillars of their family. For some, it is their flesh and blood families with all their shared history, goals, and influence. For others, it is their chosen families and their wide array of hopes and goals.

When some people picture Ma Daya, they see a kindly woman, dressed humbly but perfectly for the weather, carrying a large haversack filled with almost anything one could need.

Ma Daya’s symbol is a ring. For one bonded with her, the ring might be something simple and new or it might be a family heirloom of intricate design.

“Life is family.”

The Crown – The Safe Hearth

You no longer need to spend a point of Earth to use the Wayfare spell, The Safety of Home.

The Harp – A Rested Body, a Rested Mind

Spend a point of Air, touch the recipient, and call out either “Cure Disease by Faith” or “Cure Despair by Faith.”

The Sword –  If I Die Before I Wake

Once per event, spend a point of Void, touch a dead recipient before they turn to spirit, and call out “Cure Death by Divine” to bring them back to life.

 

The Maiden of Victory

It isn’t the destruction caused by battle, but rather the excellence in battle of her allies and enemies that burns in the blood of the Maiden of Victory. The dance of combat, the singing of steel and the cries of war inspire her. No one has truly lived until their life has nearly ended but for the heroic effort of the man or woman beside them. It is the night after that event one truly knows what it’s like to be alive. Raising a mug of cold libations to her lips, surrounded by her friends and allies, covered in the grime of combat, is her existence.

There is little pride to be had in defeating those weaker than you. You seek challenge. You seek to respect your allies and enemies. You can never truly defeat your enemy unless you know them; to know is to respect. A difficult paradox to parse, but one explored by the Maiden and those who serve her.

A victory alone is not nearly as great as a victory shared.  Those who fight side by side share an eternal bond forged in battle. The bonds forged in battle last a lifetime. Those bonds are stronger and more sacred than any written contract or any loyalty bought with a purse of coin.

The symbol of the Maiden of Victory is an eagle.

“Life is victory.”

The Crown – Her Voice Above the Din

Once per short rest, you may deliver a beneficial effect from a skill or a spell using the name of an ally. When you use this skill add “By Your Name,” and the name of the recipient to the beginning of the verbal of the effect so your call benefits your ally.

The Harp – Battlefield Inspiration

Spend a point of Air, touch the recipient, and call out either “Cure Confusion by Faith” or “Cure Despair by Faith.”

The Sword –  Excellence in Defense

Once per long rest, spend two points of Earth and call out “Parry” to negate one melee or missile attack.

 

The Proprietor

A bowl of warm stew, a table around which to gather and talk, a refreshing drink, and safety with which to enjoy all of them was the dream of the Proprietor. There are many tavern tales that speculate on the Proprietor’s life before being called to protect the Tapestry. Was he a prince who gave up his shot at the crown for a humble life? The son of a rich guild master? The serving boy at a wealthy tavern in some big city? A man who took the tavern his father passed down to him and made it into something legendary?

No matter his origin, the Proprietor worked his whole life to have places where people could safely gather throughout the known world. Some were rustic hunting lodges or taverns in villages, while others were the most elegant and ornate lounges and inns in the biggest cities.

Those who have the Proprietor as a patron usually want to provide safe places to gather for everyone. They respect hospitality and what it means to extend it to friends and enemies alike. Some eventually come to understand the deeper importance of hospitality…

A tipped mug is the symbol of the Proprietor.

“Life is hospitality.”

The Crown – Come have a Drink with Me

Ten times per event, when someone sips one of your drinks (or a drink you have bought for them) within a tavern or hearth, touch them and call out “Grant Protection by Faith.”

The Harp – A Rested Body, a Rested Mind

Spend a point of Air, touch the recipient, and call out either “Cure Disease by Faith” or “Cure Despair by Faith.”

The Sword –  Here, Drink This

Once per long rest, offer a drink to the victim of a Stricken effect. If they sip your drink, touch them and call out “Cure Stricken by Faith” to fix them up.

 

The Virtuoso

Beauty is made manifest by the Gifted with their creative arts; painting, poetry, singing, musical instruments and much, much more. Art and artists are deeply important to the health of the soul. Whether it is hard work or natural talent that makes one an artist, they all do much good for the world.

However, they are not the only ones. Those who are patrons of the arts are just as important; innkeepers who hire minstrels, nobles who commission sculptures and paintings, and those who attend performances.

A noblewoman of immense talent and a seemingly bottomless purse when it came to funding the arts, she was respected in all corners of the world of performing arts. She seemed as at home in a studio, surrounded by easels, paints, aprons, and pallets as she was in a beautiful gown standing in the center stage of a theatre as she was sitting in the balcony enjoying a vibrant performance she’d helped to see come before an audience.

When people try to conjure a picture of the Virtuoso in their minds, what they see varies greatly. Some see her with paint staining her fingers and apron as she paints some great masterpiece. Others see her elegantly dressed and appointed for an evening at a theatre either performing or enjoying the show. In rarer cases, some see her as a bard, singing for a few gathered in a park in a town or village bringing music and art where there is little to be found.

The Virtuoso’s symbol is a paint brush or an instrument.

“Life is art.”

The Crown – From the Balcony

Once per event, after someone else’s performance that you found inspiring, call out one of the following effects. “By My Voice, Refresh 2 Earth by Inspiration,” “By My Voice, Refresh 2 Fire by Inspiration,” or “By My Voice, Refresh 2 Water by Inspiration.”

The Harp – Inspired by Art

Spend a point of Air, touch the recipient, and call out either “Cure Despair by Faith” or “Cure Awe by Faith.”

The Sword –  From the Stage

If you have the Centering skill from either the Skald or Troubadour header, you gain two additional Centering points.

 

Thread-Bearers of Shadow

 

The Freebooter

There is joy and adventure to be found in lots of places and things. An overgrown trail, the vast oceans, rushing streams, and even magical portals can take one to new places, to meet new people, and to do new things. The Freebooter sought adventure, carrying back treasures that she found as she did.

Although the journey brings joy, there is also joy and satisfaction from the accomplishments you earned before you returned home. To see one’s friends and family, to share the tales of adventure, and to have safe haven before stepping upon the road are all fine, but to return with some great treasure or accomplishment is all the better.

While a light step carried her across the land, in her mind always were the treasures, secrets, and missions she accepted. She was known to say, “A hearty laugh and a cocky smile, no matter how desperate the situation, is almost enough to guarantee victory by themselves!”

Those who have the Freebooter as a patron seek to be free beyond all else. They wish to go where they want to whenever they want to. Their purposes are varied and patrons sometimes find themselves at odds as to why to travel. Adventure? Treasure? Secret Missions? Proselytizing? To serve others?

Many who follow the Freebooter dress in bright colors and stylish clothing.

A map is the symbol of the followers of the Freebooter.

“Life is the journey!”

The Crown – Cheer Up, Mate!

Three times per event, touch an ally other than yourself and call out one of the following to bolster them; “Refresh Earth by Inspiration,” “Refresh Fire by Inspiration,” or “Refresh Water by Inspiration.”

Alternately, if you are a Skald or a Troubadour and you may decide, when you take this skill, that you must precede the use of this skill with a short performance that is some sort of sea shanty. If you choose to do this, you may use this skill six times per event.

The Harp – A Salty Sailor

Spend a point of Air, and call out “Resist” to negate an attack with Water or Wind as a trait.

The Sword –  Hurricane Twist

Once per long rest, spend a point of Water, call out “Disarm by Wind” and make a melee or packet attack to twist the weapon from an opponent’s hand.

 

Lady of Sapphires

The Lady is rumored to have ascended from the mortal world in the immediate aftermath of the Night of Sacrifice. Like a bright jewel, she is a warrior with both beautiful brilliance and exceptional hardness. She moves between skirmishing, face-to-face fights and the revelry that follows with ease.

Many of the most interesting things in the world never see the light of day. Forgotten libraries, dark corners where the gentry gather, dungeons, and battlefields all hold treasures that are worth pursuing. For her, there are times for a forceful approach, and other times that call for a gentle hand and a soft word, all-the-while decked out in finery. Whichever is the better tact- that is the one she would pursue. The Lady of Sapphires is a master of knowing which situation calls for which approach.

There are many paintings, poems, stories, and songs that offer a glimpse of what the Lady of Sapphires might look like. She always has dark hair, skin, and eyes. She wears substantial jewelry and many pieces of it. She is almost always armed with a longblade. She favors dresses of velvet in dark colors. Many of those who have her as a patron favor rich fabrics and jewelry with dark gems.

The symbol of the Lady of Sapphires is a faceted gem. Some priests, if they remain chosen of the Lady of Sapphires, will add more and more gems as they successful serve the Woven Faith under her blessing.

“Life is rich.”

The Crown – Multi-Faceted

You may change the trait of your attacks with a Physical trait to Force. You may change the trait of your attacks with a Elemental trait to Light. You may spend a point of Air and call out “Resist by Force” to negate a Slam effect with an Elemental or Physical trait.

The Harp – Hard as Diamonds

Spend a point of Air, and call out “Resist” to negate an attack with Force or Light as a trait.

The Sword – The Jeweled Blade

Once per long rest, spend a point of Void, call out “Double 5 Damage by Force” and make a melee, missile or packet attack.

 

The Merciful Killer

During the dark times before the Night of Sacrifice, the people of the lands were suffering from starvation. A lone, wandering healer was tormented as he moved from village to village to see those who had died and would never come back from the Gate of Death. He tried every spell, prayer, and elixir he knew of to no avail. Nothing was a substitute for food. He couldn’t heal the suffering for the first time in his life, and it weighed on him.

It started with a single person in a small village; he felt for an old man that reminded him of his father. At the next village, he killed everyone he met that he liked. Soon he moved from village to village to kill everyone. By doing so, he saved them from permanent death but he was tormented by his acts no matter how merciful they were.

Later in life, his views evolved to try to limit or eliminate all forms of suffering. When someone can be healed, everything must be done to heal them. When they cannot, one must gift them with another mercy. That mercy is not without cost to the person administering it.

Those who have him as their patron realize the world is a place of hard choices. In the worst of times, when there are only two awful choices, one must choose. Inaction is almost never the right choice and is never the right one in times of suffering.

Priests of the Merciful Killer carry a small vial of liquid that eases pain and puts someone into a deep slumber along with a dagger to cut loose the mortal coil of the suffering once they are sleeping. The vial and the dagger serve as the token for the priests who have him as their patron.

“Life is mercy.”

The Crown – The Quick Kill

You use this skill after you begin a Death Strike on a helpless or unconscious foe. Start your Death Strike, calling out slowly “Death Strike One.” If you finish the beginning of the Death Strike without being interrupted, you may call out “Death by Mercy” to finish them off. Unlike a normal Death Strike, this follow up verbal creates a Death effect and it is treated as a melee attack.

The foe must be unconscious or unmoving due to a game effect; you cannot attempt to use this on a character who is capable of defending themselves but doesn’t happen to be moving in an attempt to trick them into taking the Death effect.

The Harp – Mercy for the Just

Spend a point of Air, touch the recipient, and call out either “Cure Despair by Faith” or “Cure Aging by Faith.”

The Sword – The Greatest Mercy

Once per long rest, spend a point of Void, call out “Death by Will,” and make a melee, missile, or packet attack to grant a merciful death.

 

The Night Cloak

Enmity is the greatest blessing ever bestowed upon the Gifted. To look upon evil and injustice and to have it sicken you is how you know you are touched by the Divine. You must remove the source of that. People should not suffer if they do not deserve it. The Night Cloak needed no higher authority than her own to strike out against those who needed to be stopped.

The edges of battle, the vulnerable flanks, the soldiers focusing on the line are the Night Cloak’s chosen fields of combat. She sticks to the shadows at lets her allies draw all the attention during the battle and after it. Those who have her as their patron see themselves as people of great resolve with a desire to act against those who are most powerful and protected to do what must be done. In most cases, any law is less important than their own views on a given matter.

Because of this, many who follow the Night Cloak are feared for acting too rashly and being too self-important. They are often distrusted by other priests as well as lay people.

Hoods, masks, cloaks, and wicked short blades are the trappings of someone who has the Night Cloak for their patron. A fabric square of a dark color, like a handkerchief or a bandanna, is the token of her followers. It need simply be folded over and tied over one’s mouth to become a mask.

“Life is cunning.”

The Crown – Shadows, My Ally

If you use the Shadowmancer skill, A Cloak of Shadows, and remain in spirit form for at least 3 seconds, you also take the effects Heal All by Shadow and Repair All Armor by Shadow.

The Harp – Know Your Weapons

Spend a point of Air, touch the recipient, and call out either “Cure Poison by Faith” or “Cure Shadow by Faith.”

The Sword – Viper Strike

Three times per event, call out “3 Damage and Agony by Poison” and make a melee, missile or packet attack. These attacks have no attribute cost.

 

The Suicide King

Succeed or fail, when you take big risk, there is always a story good story to tell even if you’re not around to tell it! Life would be boring without the luck of the draw, the roll of the dice. Life, true life, is chance. Nothing is set in stone and a person’s fate can change in an instant.

Though a renowned gambler and master of cards and other games of chance, risk and potential reward is not limited to gambling halls, back alleys, and games. Risk should be sought in all arenas of life. Aspire to greatness, no matter what the end, and you will be great; stand or fall.

Those who have The Suicide King as a patron have an adventurous spirit. They embrace chaos and chance. They often see both good luck and bad as a blessing, even if bad luck is harder to feel good about. There are many, many types of people who follow him but they all share in common an aspiration to greatness.

Gamblers are very superstitious and even those who do not revere the Suicide King are wary of him. They often say prayers to him before cards games and games of chance. Some evoke his name before big reveals. In big tournaments this is often an official part of the proceedings.

The bold favor red and there are few bolder than those who embrace the ways of the Suicide King. Most followers are conversant in many of the most popular forms of poker and other gambling card games. If someone calls “Ante Up!” it’s like a siren’s call.

Most often the King of Hearts is used as a token of the faith but other playing cards can be used as can any other object associated with gambling; dice, poker chips, etc.

“Life is fortune.”

The Crown – This Has Always Been Lucky for Me

Once per event, when carrying one of your many lucky tokens, if you are unstable and your count is about to run out you may become stable instead of dying.

In addition, when using the Legacy spell, To Walk Death’s Realm, you may use a signature gambling token or playing card with your name on it instead of going through the process of creating a full writ. The token must be recognized as unique and your name must be legible. You give this token to the recipient instead of the writ. You and Death have an understanding about these things.

Others who use Legacy magic might find your lucky token disrespectful or distasteful. They are just jealous. You probably shouldn’t expect the Reapers to return your tokens. You don’t want to press your luck.

The Harp – Staying in the Game

Spend a point of Air, touch the recipient, and call out either “Cure Fear by Faith” or “Cure Confusion by Faith.”

The Sword – Double Down

Once per long rest, you may use this power when one of your attacks is negated by a called defense. Spend two points of Air to make that attack again.

 

The Wrath

To err is human, to forgive is virtuous, but to forget is foolhardy. Those who have done wrong must pay for their crimes. It is best for those they have wronged to visit vengeance upon a wrongdoer, but this is not always possible. The Wrath and his followers deliver vengeance for those who cannot.

Rules and laws must be enforced. Traditions must be respected. Those who do not obey the laws and disrespect tradition must pay the price for their heresy.

Those who have The Wrath as their patrons want to see those who are evil pay the price for their acts. They want to enforce the laws of the Divine and of man. They seek to bring violence to right wrongs.

Followers of The Wrath are integral to the redemption offered by The Salvation; they are what will come for the person who seeks redemption should they fail to earn it or if they fall again after redemption is granted. They also seek out and destroy the enemies of the faith; especially those who still use their powers after being excommunicated.

A lightning bolt serves as the token of those of wrath. It is often a pendant but can be a broach or something embroidered as well.

“Life is vengeance.”

The Crown – You Will Not Impede Me

Take 4 points of damage and call “Purge” to end one Root or Slow effect with an Elemental, Mental, Metabolic, or Physical trait. If you can’t take the full four points of damage, you can’t use this ability. Armor will protect against this damage.

The Harp – You Will Not Deter Me

Spend a point of Air, and call out “Resist” to negate an attack with Earth or Will as a trait.

The Sword – I Will Not Be Denied My Kill

Once per long rest, spend a point of Void, call out “Short Stricken by Divine,” and make a melee, missile or packet attack to prevent enemies from undoing your work.

 

Madrigal Armor Props

Some armor skills require that you wear an appropriate prop when you use them. This section describes what we expect from an armor prop for each armor type, and explains how many armor points a player can gain from those skills.

Our goal with armor props is to add to the look and atmosphere of the game. We do not require armor that adds a lot of weight, nor must armor provide real life protection. We would rather have armor props made from lighter materials that look good and add to the atmosphere of the game, rather than armor with weight that is hidden under a tabard or surcoat where others cannot tell you are wearing any armor. Plate mail pieces that look like rigid metal but are created from lighter materials painted to look like armor are perfectly acceptable.

There are three armor skills in the game that require an armor prop; Heavy Armor, Medium Armor, and Light Armor. Each skill requires you to be wearing an appropriate armor prop to use the skill. Armor props are evaluated and are given marks for coverage and material. You get marks for your armor prop when it is evaluated, as described below. The basic requirements for the prop for each skill follows.

Heavy Armor

Heavy Armor provides a base 4 armor points, and can be increased to no more than 5 points with additional skills. The requirements for your heavy armor prop are as follows:

Heavy Armor Prop

  • Requires 16 marks
  • Requires chest coverage
  • Requires plate pauldrons or a plate full helm

Medium Armor

Medium Armor provides a base 3 armor points, and can be increased to no more than 5 points with additional skills. The requirements for your medium armor prop are as follows:

Medium Armor Prop

  • Requires 12 marks
  • Requires chest coverage

Light Armor

Light Armor provides a base 2 armor points, and can be increased to no more than 4 points with additional skills. The requirements for your light armor prop are as follows:

Light Armor Prop

  • Requires 8 marks
  • Requires chest coverage

 

Evaluating Armor: Marks

Armor coverage is divided into a number of areas; Chest and back, full helm or half helm, pauldrons or shoulders, forearms, hips, upper legs, and lower legs. To determine how many marks an armor prop is worth, count the armor type on each area using the chart below and add them all up.

If the armor is plate armor, scale mail, or metal brigandine:

Chest: 6 Marks

Full Helm: 3 Marks

Half Helm: 2 Marks

Shoulders: 3 Marks

Forearms: 3 Marks

Hips: 3 Marks

Upper Legs: 3 Marks

Lower Legs: 3 Marks

 

If the armor is chain mail or hardened leather:

Chest: 4 Marks

Full Helm: 2 Marks

Half Helm: 1 Mark

Shoulders: 2 Marks

Forearms: 2 Marks

Hips: 2 Marks

Upper Legs: 2 Marks

Lower Legs: 2 Marks

 

If the armor is light leather, hide, or fur:

Chest: 2 Marks

Full Helm: 2 Marks

Half Helm: 1 Mark

Shoulders: 1 Mark

Forearms: 1 Mark

Hips: 1 Mark

Upper Legs: 1 Mark

Lower Legs: 1 Mark

 

Articulations of metal or leather on any part of your armor are worth 1 extra mark. Multiple areas of articulation do not contribute more than 1 mark.

In addition, certain culture skills can change the requirements of armor or the evaluation of the armor prop.

Armor Specialist

Cost: 2

Any suit of armor you are wearing is worth, as an armor prop, two extra marks.

 

Magical Leather

Cost: 2

Requirement: You have learned one of the secret techniques to strengthen your own leather armor. Choose One:

  • You have spent time in Blacktallow and strengthen leather with Balefire.
  • You have spent time in Kyrzenwold and know to to construct an armored long coat.
  • You have spent time in Five Scars and know how to more effectively in leather armor.
  • You have somehow obtained armor made from the hide of a rare or magical beast.

You gain the following benefits when evaluating leather armor pieces:

  • Your light leather pieces give marks as if they were hardened leather.
  • Your hardened leather pieces give marks as if they were plate armor.

 

Armor of Khoros

Cost: 2

Requirement: You have spent time in Khoros in your character history.

  • Chest protection is no longer required.
  • If wearing warshend, double the marks it gives for upper legs and lower legs.
  • A cloth warshend, if decorated, counts as light leather before it is doubled.
  • An armored warshend can be used to satisfy the Heavy Armor requirement of pauldrons or a full helm.

 

Armor of Morgrave

Cost: Free

Requirement: You must have spent time in Morgrave in your character history.

  • A gorget can be used to satisfy the Heavy Armor requirement of pauldrons or a full helm.

 

Orcish Armor

Cost: 2

Requirement: You must have spent time with Orc tribes in your character history.

  • Your chain mail pieces, when layered with leather, are evaluated as scale mail.

 

Asymmetrical

Cost: 2

Requirement: You have been taught to fight by a Gladiator in your character history.

Choose up to two armor pieces on your limbs. You gain marks for coverage even if you only have armor on one side of your body. You may use this skill to satisfy the pauldron requirement for Heavy Armor with only one pauldron.

 

Other Armor Skills

If you obtain another type of armor skill you are protected by some mystical force or you use speed and cunning to absorb hits that would damage other fighters. Other armor skills need no prop. These skills provide a base of 2 armor points, and can be increased to no more and 4 points with additional skills. You cannot use skills that require the Heavy Armor skill.