Monday, December 29, 2014

The Necromancer's Legacy - part 46

Charon, Horacio and Thriatos soon learn that the gremlin council has agreed to a trading agreement. But Gorn inform them that two of the council members want to speak to them in private, to which the mages agree.

Znoot first takes them through the winding corridors to see the master merchant Harishbal, who wishes to learn more about the people with whom he is to trade. Realizing there might be a thing or two they do not want to share about their past the mages set out to tell three quite different stories. Further, when asked about the wares and preparations already undertaken it becomes quite clear that this is parts of the plan which has not yet been addressed. Needless to say, Harishbal is not very impressed and Znoot hurriedly takes them to the second council member, lady Besbemati.

Lady Besbemati represents one of the churches housed within the city and she is more concerned about the mages' relationship with Gorn. She expresses a fear that their interference shall tip the balance of the city in particular and the world in general if their aim is to give more power to Gorn and his god. Again the three fail to present a united front as Charon and Thriatos promise their goal is trade and trade alone, while Horacio doesn't want to hide his religious convictions and that he hopes for a spread of his religion with the aid of the trade agreement. Besbemati's reaction is not clear and long discussions among the wizards ensure as they throw accusations and debate their future diplomatic position long into the night.

As a small notion is added to the trade agreement, forcing the mages to deliver 10 cartloads of goods within two months, they leave the city on the following day. A bad and sour mood keep them quiet for a few hours before they compulsively start to plan ahead. They decide that their best option is to journey north to the city of Kemdun to try and establish some trade partners there.

The climate and terrain makes the journey arduous yet uneventful and due to some odd chance they find themselves in the same native village which Charon and Thriatos passed through on their journey south several months earlier. While not hostile the natives treat the party with strong suspiciousness and while they are allowed to camp outside the village they discover the following morning that all the natives have gone into hiding. Confiscating a couple of canoes they continue their journey and thanks to some more friendly tribes further down the river they manage to reach Kemdun after a full day's travel. The beds of a decent inn seems like heaven on Earth.

The first morning in the city they head towards the merchant district to try to find a guild or merchant house with which to do business. At the White Barrel Goods & Trading they find mister Bocco. The mystery deal offered by the wizards seems strange but yet appealing to the merchant, who agrees to invest 1,500 gold of the mages do the same and that this would grant him 50% of the profits. As the main item for sale are the gremlin crossbows Bocco promises to set up a meeting with the city's most influential characters on the arms market.

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

The Necromancer's Legacy - part 45

With their new base established, the three undead decide to send Kael to bring some of their undead minions into the city to aid them with digging a secret tunnel out of the city as this will greatly influence their ability to operate secretly within the city. Zantana and Azela thus stay behind to learn more about the city of Sunn, its inhabitants and their business.

Kael takes the short route by passing through the tribal lands south of the Pantor river, but soon finds himself followed by two riders. Managing to lay an ambush, she scare off the horses and kill the two tribals in a short fight. Claiming their clothes and weapons he continue his journey towards the mountain pass. After three days and nights journey he reaches the pass and has a quick conversation with the captain he left to guard it. The captain informs no one has detected their position but do mention that a Black Robe, one of the Zhengdi mages, has passed through from their homeland into human lands about two weeks ago. Kael gather siz of his undead minions and begin the journey back to Sunn without further delay.

Azela and Zantana have acquired a good understanding of the city during Kael's absence, but as he returns they still have trouble getting their minions unnoticed into the city. Waiting until nightfall they walk them across the riverbed and quickly move through the largely empty warehouse district. Despite a few close calls they are confident no one spotted them as they enter their base.

Back together, the three move on to the next phase by establishing themselves as traders in the city. Their business plan is to by cloth and clothing for Zhengdi in return for gold, while their cover story is that the goods are shipped to Sarinia in the west. Zantana tries to set up a deal with her contact Merga back in Aztoth and they try to establish some contacts in the city while waiting for a reply.

A knock on the door to their secret base take them all by surprise and when a tall stranger, seemingly lacking in social manners and survival instinct, walk straight into their establishment before anyone can react to stop him. However, he turns out to be the Black Robe mentioned by Kael's captain, presenting himself as Gamaral and claiming to be "a messenger from a common friend" and that "their business proposal has been accepted". He also offers to spare the group from sending caravans back to Zhengdi as he is able to teleport a certain amount of wares directly to their destination. While loaded with questions in abundance, the group decide to accept the offer for a start and set out to acquire some goods from the city and also a new warehouse to be their public front and office.

For three weeks they work together with Gamaral and manage to establish a successful business, although a less satisfying communication. Gamaral proves to be a very excentric and secretive individual and it is only the flow of gold that keeps him in the good graces of the group. At least he isn't asking any more questions than he is answering - apart from an odd request or two for a seemingly random selection of objects. As Azela, Kael and Zantana begin to establish their routines Kael discover some men keeping watch over their new establishment. While acting unaware he informs Azela who manage to trace one of the spies to a tavern going by the name of 'The Blooded Squire'. Discussing how to handle this turn of events, Zantana recollects her living days as a spy and suggest they dress themselves for a visit to the tavern to learn what is going on...

Monday, December 15, 2014

The Necromancer's Legacy - part 44

Charon and Thriatos return to the mountain cave, not much wiser about the demon but fairly confident that Osayla was still standing when they left. Horacio debriefs them about what he has learned from the gremlin, Znoot, and they decide to act on his advice to travel to the gremlin city and attempt to secure an alliance. They intend to travel light, meaning they leave most of their belongings for Jamal and Mergus to carry.

The journey takes them three days and is uneventful beneath the scorching sun. They travel west and eventually make camp in the shadows of the mountains. According to gremlin customs no outsider is allowed to know the path to the city, so Znoot ventures on ahead on his own to prepare for their arrival. Within a few hours they are approached by gremlin guards and blindfolded before being taken further up the mountain side. They soon find themselves underground and the sound of flowing water is clear. The gremlins inform them that they will be taken onboard a raft after which their blindfolds will be removed. Thus their first vision is of an underground tunnel, carved by the river they're traversing, dimly lit by the torches of the guards. A stone platform extrudes from the cave wall, partially lit by stronger lights coming from a carved corridor leading into the mountain itself. A small group of gremlins in strange but elaborate clothing await their arrival.

They are greeted by an elderly gremlin with a thin beard who introduces himself as the Keeper of the Halls in fairly understandable hara. The rest of the group seems to be guards or scribes and as they are taken through the winding (and rather low ceiling-wise) tunnels and open caves the Keeper tells them of the name and history of each place. They pass through a large market square which gives a taste as to the numbers living in the city, with hundreds of gnomes bustling about their daily business. The mages attract quite a lot of attention, but most are too busy to observe them for very long and as they leave the market most onlookers stay behind.

Eventually they find themselves in the Council Hall - meeting place of the gremlin elders. The hall resembles a theater and they are seated on one of the rows as the council spokesman begin to present them to the elders. As this is done in the gremlin language Znoot translates for them, remarking that the spokesman is not very friendly to their cause and needs to be convinced of the benefits of an alliance. As the initial introduction is completed the mages ask about who actually do suppot their cause and Znoot says it is time for them to meet his father: high priest Gorn. Gorn is shown to be an elderly, yet vigorous gremlin with a large, red beard. He informs them of the politics of the city - that most have forgotten about the God and need to be reminded. He suggests they leave the Council Hall and go to the shrine of their deity.

After a brief opportunity for prayer Gorn informs them that they are expected to hold a speech in the following day before the elders of the city. Spending some time discussing and preparing their arguments they decide Horacio should be the one to deliver it. As a thorough man, Horacio ask Znoot to assemble some devotees on which he can practice the speech. Encouraged by this the young gremlin, to the surprise of the mages, manage to fill the shrine with over a hundred attenders. After the initial chock and surprise Horacio decides to rise to the challenge and delivers an excellent performance. The crowd disperse and soon rumors about the strangers and their persuasive arguments begin circulating in the city.

The rest of the day the mages spend wandering the city with Znoot as their guide. They are shown the massive forges and the city bathouse provides a welcome chance to remove weeks of dirt and sweat (disregard for the other guests are not really considered an issue...). While day and night really doesn't exist in the underground city the mages go to bed early, not wanting to miss out on the opportunity of a good nights sleep in proper, if rather short, beds.

In the morning they are woken by Znoot who offers them the chance to join the city's morning ceremony, which they accept. The ceremony have all the residents of the city, in their thousands, walk through the city to a giant cave with an opening providing a panoramic view of the mountains. Through the cave the gremlins then observe the rising of the sun before returning to their Daily chores. Charon, Horacio and Thriatos finds this fascinating and intriguing, but eventually return their focus to the speech which is to be held within a few hours.

As the hour approaches the mages enter into a full Council Hall - hundreds of gremins staring as they enter the center of the hall. With Charon and Thriatos doing what they can to lend weight to Horacio's arguments they deliver their speech to the expecting audience. A few questions are raised by those who do not share their political agenda, but they are swiftly answered before they are asked to leave as the elders discuss the proposal behind closed doors.

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Don't miss the Centuria Generator!

A small update for the Centuria Generator has just been released (you'll find it linked from the dropdown menu in the upper right hand corner, hidden under Resources, or by following the link).

So basically the Random Name Generator and Random Business Generator has become more prominent features by prompting a select option from the start page (don't miss out on the Age option!). While character generation hasn't changed both the random generators have been updated. The Random Business Generator has recieved a major addon in the form of businesses for the Age of Information - look at the site banner to know for which age you are currently generating!

There should be enough combinations for a couple of thousand businesses in there, and add the fact that abbreviations are randomly created you're unlikely to get the same result very often. Of course, the abbreviations can produce some amusing results but at least the most common curses and filtered words have been excluded...

Moving on to the Random Name Generator the only addon is a "nickname" option which is available only for the Age of Information. Checking this option adds a nickname to each character name generated - the combinations are slightly limited at the moment but will surely grow with time.

And that was all that was new this time, please enjoy!

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

The Necromancer's Legacy - part 43

Azela, Kael and Zantana start to lay out their plans for the future, but they are disturbed by some commotion from downstairs. Zantana head to investigate and discovers a group of city guards asking for two persons matching the desciptions of Azela and Kael. She confronts the guards in the stairs leading to the rooms and they ask her to step aside as they have come to search the Place for two suspected murderers. Playing out her role as a noblewoman, Zantana admits that the descriptions matches her two servants but that they certainly aren't involved in any such matters. While the guards clearly do not want to make enemies among the nobility they nevertheless insist that Zantana and her servants accompany them to the court house to clear the matter.

As the time is late much of the city is quiet. The guards take them to a side entrance to the court house and introduce them to the constablos - the local judge. Zantana is quick to complain about the late hour and the lack of subtlety in the proceedings, accusations which the judge seems unprepared for and makes a rather poor excuse by blaming it on the guards. They learn that Fusus - the merchant who tried to swindle them of their goods - has been found dead in his home, and witnesses has placed two persons matching Azela and Kaels descriptions at the scene. The judge wants them to remain in the city until it can be arranged for a diviner to discern their innocense, but having a mage examine their minds is perhaps the last thing any of the three want at the moment. Zantana thus convinces the judge that they have urgent business in Miramasa and, as not to delay them further, she offers to visit the court there as soon as they arrive. The judge eventually agrees and after some paperwork is cleared the three leave, but they do not head for the inn but rather decide to immediately try to find who is behind the slander.

Kael ventures alone back to the house of Fusus to try to look for clues there, while Zantana and Azela head back to the court house to see if the judge has any files on the source of the accusations. The two manage to silently enter the building and finds the judge sleeping in his chambers next to his office. Going through his papers, Zantana finds the descriptions rather formal - details likely dictated and memorized rather than seen in person. However, there is no reference as to who made them and given the only person likely to know is sleeping in the next room they decide to act fast. They sneak into the bed chambers and place a dagger at the throat of the sleeping man. Removing heir veil, the judge finds himself looking into an undead face and with his life as stake he readily reveals that the case is a personal favor to one Barbuca, a powerful crime lord within the city. After stating that he better leave the business be the two women head silently into the night.

Meanwhile, Kael is making his way to Fusus' house, but realize he is being followed. An attempt to ambush his stalker fails and he ends up chasing the person through the streets. With his undead fortitue and tactical cunning Kael eventually catch the man who quickly realize fighting is futile. A small bribe from Kael ease his worries and he helpfully explains he's been hired by a man called Barbuca and agrees to show Kael to his residence. Satisfied Kael release the man and after a quick but fruitless search of Fusus' home he returns towards the inn.

Zantana suggests the docks would be a good place to look for more information about Barbuca, but she is badly dressed for such an excusion and thus Azela go there alone. However, a lone woman in the middle of the night can attract the wrong attention and three large men, presumably sailors, take an interest in her. She tries to put them to good use by offering them money for taking her to Barbuca, to which they agree. Not very surprisingly, they prove to be less than trustworthy and attempt to overpower her as they walk through a silent alley. Her undead condition make her insusceptible to damage so despite suffering a knife in her tigh she easily outruns her opponents and decides returning to the inn is her best option.

Meeting up, the undead discuss their findings and conclude that to be able to work unhindered in the city they need to change their disguises. They intend to leave the city in the morning to switch clothes somewhere along the road and then return again and purchase a secluded warehouse to use as a base of operations. At sunrise they set their plan in motion and after successfully acquiring a suitable location next to the city walls they set out to learn more about the city, its defences, wizard house and, not least, Barbuca and the underworld.

Monday, October 27, 2014

The Necromancer's Legacy - part 42

Charon, Horacio and Thriatos spend their time creating a plan for how to archieve what the dragon has asked them. While they do this the trolls return to the site and help carry their equipment to the caves to the south. The king of the trolls inform them that they had been summoned by their master and that representatives of the other trollkin loyal to the dragon are also on their way. The trolls must however soon leave again, as the area cannot provide for them all for very long.

For the coming three days the troll king teach the three mages to speak their language, oogrim, and as the trolls prepare to leave representatives from local goblin clans and also a gremlin - a goblin folk with a technological aptitue - arrive. With the aid of the troll king Charon, Horacio and Thriatos begin to discuss the situation with the goblins, learning how many they are, what Resources they have - all to lay a foundation for their upcoming campaign. It is however very clear that the goblins, while sharing the same master, is not very friendly towards each other. Keeping them from fighting themselves is going to be a major issue.

The gremlin, known by the name of Znoot, gives a more positive account. His city can supply good quality weapons and armor from their forges and is nearly inpenetrable from the outside. Only problem is the city is not very loyal to the dragon. Thus his fellow citizens need to be convinced of the great prospects and gains which can be made by joining the three mages' effort.

Having learned what they believe they can, the three mages decide it is time for action (and for Thriatos to repay certain debts to the Abyss). Charon and Thriatos therefore journey towards Osayla to purchase supplies and some wares with which they hope to impress the gremlins. Oh, and also to release a demon as part of Thriatos' bargin. Horacio meanwhile choose to stay behind to learn more about the gremlins and their city from Znoot for use in their future negotiations.

In their inconspicuous clothing Charon and Thriatos reach Osayla without much trouble. They gather the supplies and wares they need and then leave for the outskirts of the city where Thriatos summons the djinn who helped them at the tomb. Now all he must do is to uphold his summoning for the required time and the deal is complete. The demon shapeshifts to human form and wanders into the city while the mages prepare for a long night.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Insanely insane!

Increasing the difficulty for handling insanity - means more insanity!

Basically it is now a bit harder to surpress a disorder once one have been obtained. Little point in gaining them unless they contribute to the fun, eh? Check out Mental Disorders on page 93 in the Core Rule Book for the different effects and the difficulty of surpressing them.

Can it get any crazier?

Monday, October 13, 2014

The Necromancer's Legacy - part 41

In the city of Aztoth, Zantana has learned her new contact is a mage called Merga and she tries to learn more about him. Similarly, Azela learns a large force of King's Blades is assembling for a journey north. Neither learns much from their inquiries but are instead met with news from Kael that Geb has been taken away by the emperor's guard to research the orb in a secure location and that they should continue the mission in the human lands on their own. Mingone shows up briefly to make sure they are on their way as he too must leave and wants to make sure there are no delays to the lich-king's plans.

Assembling a small group of lesser undead they start to make their way back to the city of Sunn. After a restless journey they reach the human lands and decide it is time to start acting human to avoid any unwanted attention. Zantana, having recieved a magical ring from Merga to mask her disfigured face is reluctant to use it - preferring the old fasioned way of using a veil. Settling in at an inn in the town of Javibara, Zantana is posing as a servant of Kael which eventually places her in a bath together with some of the servants working at the establishment. This goes well until her veil is accidentally removed and the other servants flee in terror from her ghastly appearance. Learning of this, the innkeeper tries to ask Kael about their servant in the most diplomatic way possible, but Zantana appears and convinces him that the servants have exaggerated the story. She and Azela then head out into the town to pick up on recent news and rumors.

With the aid of a magical telescope Azela notice a shapeless creature - almost invisible to the naked eye - following her. She is however unable to approach the creature as it seems to dissappear. She discusses the event with Kael who, unfortunately, have little knowledge about strange creatures or magic and is unable to offer any advice.

Zantana finds herself in the company of subashi Daccarim, commander of a fort located outside the city, after having charmed her way into a tavern housing some of the more wealthy members of the town. Daccarim appears to be mainly occupied by himself and his happy to tell about his influence in the city, especially how the war has made him the most powerful man in the town right now. They go on to more intimate talking, but when it comes to the actual seduction the fact that Zantana's body is, well, dead cause some serious complications. The commander is too embarrased by the situation to ask any questions but Zantana herself is also disturbed by the event and in her frustration manage to seduce the innkeeper of the inn where they are staying who, possibly due to quite a large amount of alcohol, have few objections.

The party continue their journey on the following day and it takes them four days to reach Sunn. Arriving in the afternoon, they decide that a library would be a good place to start looking looking for the remaining orbs and Azela and Zantana set out to find one while Kael heads out to check up on the wares they left a few weeks ago. The citizens of Sunn are not very accomodating to questions and when Kael discovers that their merchandise have been stolen they change their plan. Zantana heads out to find an inn where they can meet up later while Kael and Azela head of to find the merchant responsible after Kael learned his adress from placing a clerk against the wall (literally).

Making their way to the middle class quarters as nightfall is approaching, Kael smashes the door of the house as soon as they arrive and Azela hurry in and capture the merchant before he has any chance to act. As the goods are already sold all the merchant can do is to offer them money as a compensation. Kael insists on a hefty price tag and the merchant reluctantly agrees as he has little choice. Not having the full amount at home, they take what he has and he promise to deliver the rest first thing in the morning. The undead agree to this as they intend to keep an eye on him anyway.

The three meet up back at the inn where Zantana as arranged rooms for the night - and also made the transformation from servant to lady. Kael and Azela thus finds themselves acting as servants for their companion, with little option to discuss the matter without rising suspicions.

Monday, October 6, 2014

The Necromancer's Legacy - part 40

Charon, Horacio and Thriatos prepares to delve deeper into the cave by casting the defensive spells at their disposal. The huge tracks are easy to follow and as they venture further into the cave they notice not all of it is natural as they wander into a massive, man-made corridor. The corridor takes them to a stone bridge taking them above an impressive underground cathedral. Gigantic columns rise from the darkness but their eyes are not drawn to the architecture but rather a dim light visible at the far side of the bridge. They hurry to cross, but a strange creature suddenly appear to block their path.
The creature is a sphinx - an ancient guardian creature - who asks them to present the keystones. It informs them they must complete a test in order to gain entrance and that they should prepare themselves for doing so. When they are ready they are to each take a keystone amulet and wear it, which will commence the test. With little hesitation the mages do as they are asked.

The scenery change and the three of them find themselves on an open plain. They expect to be experiencing some sort of illusion but they cannot detect any magic. A path leads forward so they follow it.

After a kilometer or so they see two characters awaiting them on a hilltop. As they come closer they see it is consuls Seneca and Quadrata. Doubting they are the real persons and more likely simple reflections they never the less show appropriate courtesy. The consuls ask them why they have come and what they aim to achieve. The mages answer, truthfully, that they have come to find a powerful artifact and to take it out of reach from consul Savvas. The two consuls fade away and the three mages can only assume this means they passed this part of the test. The path continues.

A second hill appears, this time with a lone character appearing to be the djinn Thriatos had summoned earlier. It challenges them to a battle but is quite easily defeated. Charon and Thriatos notice that despite several fire spells being cast the grass is not burned and looking back the landscape behind them seems to have changed. Seeing little choice they continue along the path.

Finally, they reach a large stony circle in which a third character awaits. They cannot make out a face before it is transformed into the great red dragon from the mountains. As it opens its gigantic jaws towards them they at first do not know what to expect, but soon realize its mouth is a gateway. As they cannot know where it leads - back to the underground cathedral or into the belly of a dragon - they hesitate but all three eventually walk through. They find themselves back at the bridge with the sphinx gone.

They walk to the light source ahead which appears to be a head-sized glowing orb. After careful examination they determine it is merely a container and needs to be destroyed. As they do so a smaller, obsidian-colored orb is revealed inside. Examining it as well Charon and Horacio deduce that the stone is harmful to living things and therefore commands Jamal to pick it up. Charon then recieves it into his satchel and they start heading back out. Unfortunately, the creature which made the giant tracks are waiting for them and is shown to be a hydra. They dodge its attacks and run for the exit - all making it except for Goran who falls over and is devoured by the beast as he attempts to defend himself.

Not really stopping until they reach the camp, the mages find a second unpleasant surprise. The remains of their servant Victor are found alongside clawed tracks and some evidence of feeding from the burned corpse pile. The tents have been ruined and their camels are missing but otherwise their belongings appear to be still there. Without any means of transportation they reflect if it might be possible that Goran and his fellow adventurers kept some camels close to their camp. Deciding it is their best chance they return to fetch some jewelry from the tomb, which they bring out through the goblin tunnels, and then set out on their way.

As night time comes quickly they have to search for the beasts in the dark, but Mergus manage to locate and round up two of the adventurers' camels. Getting some well needed rest, the group set out in the morning on foot, using the camels to carry their gear. They reach Osayla in the following day.

Enjoying the comforts of civilization as if they've been gone for years, the journey is however far from over and they stock up on supplies (and new camels) and head northeast, towards the town of Baava, with the aim of reaching the troll caves further north in the mountains. During their travel they hear rumors of a legion being lost in some battle in Pantoria and wizards from Menokh looking for a group of rouge mages - probably the three. Finding the mountains a good place to keep out of reach for a while they stock up on further necessary supplies such as real beds and lots of pillows. The small caravan then aims north for the mountain pass.

Reaching the troll cave within a few days travel they find it deserted and empty. With the trolls nowhere to be found they decide to journey to the Storm Eye and try to summon the dragon on their own. Finding the altar of the trolls they place upon it the dark orb along with one of the lightning staves found in the tomb. After several unsuccessful attempts at prayer (which is how the trolls did it so it must work, right?) they finally manage to summon the dragon. Without speaking it sends their offerings away with some sort of telekinesis spell. Its mere presense feels empowering and the three mages then hear its thoughts within their heads: build me a stronghold and assemble an army for the conquest of the Empire.

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

The Importance of Purpose

A rather philosophical headline, this article will bridge the deep waters separating the gaming hobby from reality - but in truth they are already connected more than what could be assumed at first glance. An observation perhaps even more true for roleplaying games in particular.

Apart from starting a thread in the debatable area concerning roleplaying games, the players and the many observations which can be made of these elements, the purpose of this piece of text is also to promote the reasons behind this activity in the first place. But before I launch myself into a meta-discussion concerning the purpose of discussing the importance of purpose - let's take a look at the practical issue.

The Issue

Both real life and the life of the imaginary characters created in a roleplaying scenario are filled with decision-making. What then fuels the decisions we make? In real life this might not always be clear, as the choice of bread at the supermarket might seem quite different from the choice of which career to pursue or how to engage in a relationship. In roleplaying the idea is generally to remove the day-to-day decisions and focus on the life-changing perilous choices connected with death-defying bravery or dilemmas concerning who to save and who to let die. It is decision-making brought to its extreme - but perhaps slightly defused by sitting around a table with lots of dice, pens and paper.

What then separates a good roleplayer from one not so good? I'm going to put myself in the line of fire by presenting a revolutionary opinion (or maybe not) that it is the ability to "stay in character" which defines a good roleplayer. To stay in character is the concept of acting and making decisions from the character's point of view, ignoring real life surroundings and information - even if such is of a beneficial nature to the character. But how is this achieved? The answer is: through understanding of purpose.

The Solution

Finally you say - the bugger got to the point of this damn article. Yes indeed, but there are a few more revelations waiting to be done so unless your life present an obvious better choice for how to spend your time you might concider reading the rest as well.

Purpose guides us, consiously or unconsiously, through our decision making - the purpose meaning what we ultimately aim to achieve. In the grocery store a great care for the environment and welfare of our planet will entice us to choose organic products. But if our minds at the same time is focused on the prospect of breaking even at the end of the month, money might turn out to be the determining factor in what we actually buy. A family to provide for might cause us to decline higher education, while the ambition for social climbing might cause us to seek it.

In roleplaying, thus, it becomes critical to grasp what purpose or purposes drives the character one is currently playing. One must form an image of the character, perhaps by asking a few questions, in order to grasp this. A very powerful and fast method for achiving this is through the use of personas - or archetypes as they are called in the Centuria rules. The idea is that characters can be divided into major roles based on their main purpose(s). More depth can then be added by delving into the minor or short term purposes which a character seeks.

Final revelations

As more revelations where promised I aim to deliver. Personas is an excellent way to find a way to portray a character and understand its driving forces in the situations he or she encounters. But it need not stop there. Back in the real world, personas is a concept used by, for instance, marketing firms to be able to understand their customers. It can also be used to better understand yourself and the people around you. And, reconnecting roleplaying with real life, it allows you to practice doing just that. Even through most roleplaying games assume you play someone else and not yourself it is an opportunity to ask questions - and perhaps find answers.

The Necromancer's Legacy - part 39

Kael, Azela and Geb is suddently ordered to return to the capital immediately. Hastily they arrange for their merchandise to be stored in a warehouse until they return. They then travel day and night on their way back to Zhend.

Meanwhile, a group of undead is marching south through the desert of Ten Makao. Among them is Zantana, until recently a quite successful courtesan and spy now finding death to be far more complicated than she had imagined. The group is led by Mingone who, as they at last reach the Zhend capital, singles out Zantana and brings her with him to his palace. Kael, Azela and Geb have already arrived and Mingone explains that the four will now be working together and that Zantana has further knowledge about the happenings in the human lands. He leaves them to be acquainted as he must attend to other business.
Zantana tries to strike up a conversation, but between the century-old Azela and Kael and Geb - who was a social misfit from the day he was born - she finds few emotions with which to connect. Awkward silence follows and as they try to pass the time Mingone returns to inform them the Emperor himself wants to see them immediately.

Emperor Zazao Tanung recieves them in his private chambers rather than the royal palace. He asks Geb at what he knows about a black orb - recovered from the underground complex he was examining before his turning to the undead. Geb denies any knowledge and through the Emperor doubts the truthfulness in his statement the four of them are nevertheless tasked with examining the orb to reveal its secrets. The four undead thanks the Emperor for his trust in the matter and return to Mingone's palace.
Once back, Mingone gives them some further information by revealing the orb is but one of Three and that their task will now include the mission of locating the other two - surely held somewhere within the Empire. The orbs are the most important pieces in a collection of artifacts known as the Necromancer's Legacy - and the Emperor wishes to have them assembled.

Determined to find out more about the orb before they return to human lands Geb orders one of their undead minions to grasp the orb bare-handed. The undead immediately starts acting strangely, apparently gaining a mind of its own. They are forced to reclaim the orb by force and Geb decides that it is best that he himself conducts the test. Grasping the orb he can hear distant voices - voices which gain in strength the more relaxed and less focused Geb is. However, when he focuses he finds himself in a dark place where the shapes and faces of dead people suddenly emerge like mist.

Consulting the books in their library they find little information to help them with the orb and Geb and Zantana join forces and heads for the city administratum to look for more clues there. Kael and Azela stays behind to plan their mission and consult maps of the Empire as to find possible locations of the other orbs. Azela finds herself unable to resist the curiosity awoken by the orb but failing to learn anything new she is discovered by Kael who accuses her of a lack of discipline.

Geb and Zantana has a run-in with the undead bureaucracy, but manage to get allowance for searching the archives of known artifacts. Zantana, frustrated that her former charms seems to count for nothing in this undead existence, steals a key from an administrator and proceeds to sneak into the office of the head administrator. She finds little of interest but Geb has more luck and manage to find  several books which he believes can aid them in their quest. While Geb discovers the administrators are not allowing him to leave with the books Zantana engages in conversation with another visitor who is more than willing to lend her aid - for a price. Zantana agrees and they part after the man tells her he will keep in contact.

As Zantana returns Kael and Azela have decided they must return to the human lands if they do not want to abandon their current disguise and assets and arrange for a new one. But planning the journey back is hard on Zantana who finds the experience of being undead to have a taxing impact on her sanity. Her displays of emotions brings back memories to Kael and Azela who start to warm up a bit by remembering a time when they themselves where alive and not in service of the undead emperor. In the middle of it all, Geb returns frustrated and empty handed and the four realize they must seriously consider how they intend to continue with their mission.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

The Necromancer's Legacy - part 38

Searching the wilderness for the missing key stone does not appeal to Charon, Horacio or Thriatos - so they send Mergus instead and go to sleep. The night is cut short as their servant returns after a few hours, informing them he has found the camp they are looking for. As it is located on high ground with good view of the surrounding lands they decide to go there immediately to use the cover of darkness to their advantage.

While experts in the fields of raising the dead and inflicting pain and injury on their enemies, moving silently - especially when they cannot see where they put their feet - is not the forte of the three mages. Still, it is night and hopefully a few small stones sent down a slope will not attract much attention as long as they keep swearing and cursing to a minimum. They all follow the road for the first path, but then they reach a steep slope filled with lose rocks and stones which they must climb. Finding this a bit too challenging they send Mergus back to camp to get some rope. He return after half an hour and they all manage to reach the top of the slope with no incidents. A small path winds itself along the narrow space between a cliff wall and the steep drop to the road below them. They start to follow it.

Mergus manages to find a tripwire and disarm it before it can cause any harm - but without warning harm is upon them as arrows starts to fly, fortunately deflected by their magical defenses. As the attackers are positioned above the path, Mergus climbs it to engage them. This places Charon in front when a steel-clad warrior appears and charges him with a two-handed sword. Luckily, Jamal is there to interfere and Charon can focus on his spellcasting without having to fear a sword blow to the head. A magical flame erupts from the top of the cliff and Charon, Horacio and Thriatos throw themselves against the ground and manage to evade it. Victor and Jamal are however set on fire by the flames - but this is more an inconvenience than a lethal threat for the time being. Thriatos responds with a fire spell of his own but are then attacked from behind and injured by a stealthy assassin with a dagger. Horacio comes to his aid with a wind spell which sends the assailant screaming of the cliff. The process is repeated against the attackers above and soon only the armored warrior remains as his only fighting companion is incapacitated by Horacio using a holding spell.

The warrior surrender so determining they only need one prisoner the mages execute the man held by Horacio's spell. Apparently not intimidated by this, the large man introduces himself as Goran and, as his employer died during the fight, see no reason to obstruct them further. He instead leads them back to the camp belonging to him and his former companions. There he produces the key stone they had stolen from Thriatos and returns it. Unfortunately, he does not know much about mission for which he was previously hired but offer to serve the mages instead as his contract is now void. They agree to this after a short debate - but seing Goran is in no good position to haggle they cut the price rather drastically. They then loot the camp for any valuables before returning back to their own beds. Goran sleeps outside with the three undead guarding the mages and keeping an eye on the new recruit.

The following day starts a bit later than usual, but with the clear goal of finding the third key stone. They leave Victor to guard the camp and go seeking the aid of the goblins who tell them of a cave which might have what they seek. They are proven right as the key stone is found on a pedestal within the cave. Expecting nothing to be easy they start searching the room for traps and Charon finds a hidden trapdoor in the roof. As it appears harmless and no other traps have been found they take the key stone and are relieved when this has no apparent effect. They cannot however leave the trapdoor alone so decide to investigate it by sending forth Jamal. The room above is filled with mummies, but Thriatos and Horacio employs their pyromancy skill to return them to ash. Unfortunately, most other things in the room are set ablaze as well so not much remains for them to loot. But they do find a door and decide to see where it goes.

Following a path from the door they discover a new tomb. The sarcophagus housed within is surrounded by large stone statues which they all find suspiscious. Their caution is wise as the statues comes alive as they enter the room. They retreat rather than face battle and are eventually forced to abandon the idea of exploring the path as the disgruntled guardians pound at the walls and thus cause the roof to start collapsing.

Back in the cave where they found the third key stone the mages ask themselves what the stones are actually for. They realize they probably open a seal of some sort, but they know of no place where such a seal could exist. Thriatos summons his imp to speak with the goblins again and they learn that the goblins keep a temple in their underground complex where they worship some kind of creature with sacrifices and prayers. They are given permission to enter the temple, but appart from wall decorations suggesting it is some kind of large lizard creature they find no further clues. However, exploring a nearby cave they stumble upon an old carved staircase leading downwards. As they reach the base they find themselves in a very large cave - the ground covered with clawed tracks and the marks of a massive body dragged along the ground...

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

The Necromancer's Legacy - part 37

As Azela, Kael and Geb arrive at the western side of the mountain they find the remains of the camp used by Geb and his former associates. Tracks point to two groups having visited the site, but with Azela and Kael quite out of touch with life as mortals they decide to brush up on their social skills rather than pursuing unknown people. The three undead leave their entourage in the caves behind them and heads towards the closest town - Javibara.

Marsching for two days and night they reach Javibara and manage to gain entrance into the city. As Azela doesn't speak the language they decide to rent a room for a week to learn and study local customs. As the situation in the province appears tense and outlanders are seen with great mistrust it seems like a good decision. As Azela starts to learn to speak cira they discover the town is fairly calm and quiet, despite many of its soldiers having travelled east to join with the army rebelling against the Empire.

To avoid attracting too much attention the group decide to pose as merchants seeking to find wares. As Javibara mostly imports from the rest of the province they find weapons to be the only viable alternative as the city produce more than enough to cover its own needs and war makes setting up such business seem more believable. While Geb is left to set up a contact network Kael and Azela head back to Zhend to fetch their treasury. Two weeks later they seal a favorable deal with the local commander of the garrison, Daccarim, and equipping themselves with mounts, wagons and an escort of mercenaries they head north towards the city of Lao-Din. The journey is uneventful but Kael learns from the soldiers that the pantorian army has been victorious and the threat from the Empire is neutralized - at least for the time being.

Lao-Din proves to be a city rich in contrasts, apparently suffering more from internal conflicts than the ongoing rebellion. To avoid getting dragged into the city's politics they rent a room only for the night and plan to leave on the following morning. They learn the trouble in the city is due to an ongoing feud between the city's lord, pasha Jaccarin, and the grandmaster of the local wizard house, Kanadir. The mages have apparently been confined to their own estate and shut out from the rest of the city.

Before they leave they sell their mounts as they'll be going by river boat and prefer a light load. They reach the next major city, Sunn, in three days and make arrangements to stay for another two. Introducing themselves as merchants from Sarinia they receive little attention from the quite preoccupied citizens. As this suits them just fine they settle in and even work a bit on their social skills - with mixed results as the undead soon find themselves in the gutter after a meal and drink due to their lack of working bodily functions.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

The Necromancer's Legacy - part 36

After the devastation of the mages' camp Charon and Horacio decides to the corpses littering the ground to good use. They decide to create a greater undead using the assassin's soul which Charon has kept bound to a dagger for some time. This will however require their full attention, so after rescuing a few of their belongings from the loot collected by the goblins they go to sleep, leaving their existing undead servants to guard the camp.

The following day Charon and Horacio start working on their Creation and while initially quite interested Thriatos soon becomes bored and retreat to study the texts he gathered at archmage Karachen's place back in Pantoria. The hours pass and soon a new undead has risen and joined the group. He recalls his name as Mergus, but this undead existence is taxing on his mind and he requires some time to cope with the situation, which Charon and Horacio gives him. His sole orders are to guard the camp with Victor and Jamal once night falls.

As a new dawn comes they decide to return to the mission at hand. During the discussion as to exactly how they indend to do this, Thriatos imp lets slip that it, through some powerful friends, could be of service. The mages conclude it is a good idea and the imp start instructing Thriatos in how to cast the summoning spell required. Charon and Horacio use the undead to clear away the corpses, which have started to smell, and prepare themselves for the show. They must however wait another day as it is getting dark and Thriatos does not want to perform the ritual at night. The imp is banished back to the Abyss to be able to convey Thriatos' wishes before the summoning.

As they do not know quite what to expect the mages gather closely within a pentagram ward set up by Thriatos. The spell summons a djinn and Thriatos attempts to start a friendly conversation, but the creature is difficult to read. It offers to scry for the two key stones the mages believe that they need - one stolen and one yet to be found - and to deliver the results as a message on a rocky wall close to their camp. In return the demon demands 36 hours in the Mortal Realm and for it to be summoned close to a city, to which the mages agree. Awkwardly the mages then realize they have no means by which to banish a demon of this Power and the demon must thus wait for Thriatos' summoning to end before it can return to the Abyss. It uses magic to travel quickly from the site as the desert hold little of value to it. The mages then tries to pass time as they wait for the demon's response through studies and sharing a few spells.

As dusk begins to arrive a message, written in what appears to be blood, becomes visible on the mountain side. It puzzles them as one key stone is supposed to be in a nearby cave, which they had anticipated, but the other is in a camp not far from theirs. Who are in that camp and why have they claimed one of the key stones?

Monday, September 1, 2014

Big update!

A big update of the Core Rule Book has just been uploaded, adding descriptions for those items in the gear chapter lacking such (weapons, armors, shields and drugs). Check it out at the downloads page!

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Random names & businesses

The character generator (you'll find it at the resources tab on this page) has been enhanced with a random name generator ( and a random business generator (, making life as a Game Master a bit more easy.

If you have any comments or ideas regarding these new functions share them on the Centuria Facebook page!

Monday, August 25, 2014

The Necromancer's Legacy - part 35

Geb finds himself in the ruin city of Aztoth at the heart of the lands of Zhengdi, an ancient kingdom to the east long since lost. As a scholar he is familiar with the land as he has spent much time studying it. Thought to have been destroyed almost 500 years ago it spawned a horde of undead which nearly destroyed the Empire too before they were defeated. It would appear they still have numbers left in the desert, as the state of Zhengdi still exists as an undead state with undead inhabitants. For Geb it is to be no different and after a ritual murder he is bought back and given a new body - the old considered below recruitment standards. He is now an undead creature, but thankts to the unsurpassed skill of the Zhengdi necromancers - themselves undead - his mind is preserved intact and his body is almost life-like, save for a certain paleness.

After the rather extreme employment procedure, Geb is introduced to two experienced servants of the lich-king of Zhengdi, commander Kael of Zhengdi's army and Azela, a member of the King's Blades - the lich-king's personal servants and spies. Together they are bought before the king and the country's undead nobility and given the task to raise the kingdom to new heights and through their actions grant it honor and further its knowledge.
After these formal proceedings they are taken to the residence of Mingone, who is the first captain of the King's Blades. Mingone explains that the tomb in which he and Geb had their last encounter is of great interest to the kingdom as it provides a secret pathway into the Empire. As Geb has explored large paths of it they are to return with him to complete the task, Mingone's servants having already cleared the tomb of most of its undead guardians.

The journey takes them through desert and jungle, Geb experiencing for the first time his undead abilities to completely ignore the weather and any form of fatigue with the group wandering day and night without rest or sleep. His constant insights remind Azela and Kael of their own time among the living, which had faded during years of service to the lich-king.

Arriving at the tomb, Mingone informs them that he expects them to find and return all objects of value to their king. He mentions a powerful guardian which his troops have not managed to deal with - but the guardian will not bother them as long as they do not approach its crypt. For Geb it is a strange thing to experience the same place again in his altered condition, but his scholarly ways soon take precedence over such thoughts. They explore the tomb methodically, finding a few scrolls but little else as Mingone's minions have already done some work. They return to the crystal cave Geb found during his last visit and the suspiscious statue is indeed found to be a trap in the form of a giant gargoyle which transforms from its petrified state and attacks them. The undead trio are however a potent fighting force and destroy it without suffering much damage. Exploring the crystal cave they discover that the water in the cave have healing properties - and are thus harmful to them as undead. They use one of Mingone's minions to get a sample of the water and the crystals and send it to Mingone.

In the last section of the tomb they discover an ancient library which they prepare to have moved back to Aztoth. With Geb's aid they proceed by locating the secret door through which he came and which will lead them to the second tomb. They have a few zombies bash the door to dust, allowing them to enter. They soon find the guardians from which Geb spent his last visit escaping - but they appear oblivious to other undead and they can walk about freely. In the pool of the major crypt they discover a hidden treasure of impressive dimensions and, given that Geb had previously explored the rest of the tomb, they determine that they have found what there is to be found.

Back in Aztoth Mingone is pleased with their progress and informs them he has a new mission for them. On the orders of the lich-king they are to develop a plan on how to best invade the Empire using the passage-way which they have now explored. He provides them with a base of operations within his own palace and awards them 5'000 gold to cover their expenses. Kael sends part of a company of lesser undead to guard the passage, disguised as an escort for the servants returning the library for Geb. The deception is necessary as they do not want the plotting nobility of the country to interfere with their plans.

As time is not considered an issue their next move is to thoroughly study the contents of the library as it is being brought back and to polish some of the skills deemed necessary for the task at hand. Eventually they travel to the tomb with the aim of crossing into the Empire and infiltrate one of the cities beyond.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

The Necromancer's Legacy - part 34

Very carefully Charon, Horacio and Thriatos back away from the sleeping giant bats and head for a tunnel. Thriatos sets off a simple trap and they realize they have reached parts of the caves inhabitet by the goblins. As the trap seems to have alerted them the mages send their imp forward to negotiate and to their surprise it manages to arrange a meeting with the goblin king.

Wandering deeper into the caves, with an increasing number of goblins following them, the mages have second thoughts about whether or not this was a good idea. But they reach the Hall of the King (a slightly larger cave) unmolested and instruct the imp to suggest an alliance with the aim of driving off the humans outside the mountain. After giving it some thought the king agrees, provided that all spoils of war goes to the goblins. The mages find this acceptable but now face the problem of formulating a plan of attack. Eventually they decide that Charon and Horacio will lead a group of goblins each and attack the camp from two directions. Thriatos will return to create havoc from its center.

To not make Esteria and her followers suspicious they return to camp to sleep during the day under the pretence of preparing for a second day of exploration. Victor wakes his masters during the night and Charon and Horacio attempt to sneak out. Charon is helped to climb down by Thriatos using the Staff of Telekinesis while Horacio manage to talk his way past a guard without him suspecting anything is afoot. However, Horacio is not prepared for the two guards keeping an eye on the goblins and they do not buy his hasty excuse for being there. Luckily, the goblins show up and slit the throats of the guards before they are able to resist or give a warning.

Charon encounters a similar situation where a guard is watching the gates of the tomb. He dominates him in time for a second guard to show up, asking what is going on. Using his minion to slay this threat, the battle causes the camp guards to ask what is going on. Again Charon uses his minion to ensure them everything is fine and then the two open the gates for the goblins waiting inside.

The goblins start to position themselves for the attack, but the soldiers of the camp suspect something is going on and have awoken the mages. With a few summoned fire elementals they unleash death on the surprised goblins, but Charon at least manage to have them running towards the enemies rather than flee the battle.

As the action starts Thriatos finds Esteria outside of his tent together with two guards. She asks them to capture him but he backs away and send Victor and Jamal to deal with them - which they do quickly after one of the guards run Victor through only to discover this had little effect. Esteria flee the scene while Thriatos sets about banishing the summoned elementals and throwing pyromantic spells at the guards battling Charon and his goblins.

From further up the mountain side Horacio sees what's going on and commands his force to attack. The soldiers spot the horde as it approaches and tries to set up a defensive line together with the camp miners, but the goblins push through and Horacio wins a stand-off with a defending mage.

Charon's forces take serious casualties and he himself is wounded by two arrows. With an evocation spell he causes one of the guards armor to explode, temporarily opening a gap in the defending line and allowing the goblins to get through while Thriatos, Jamal and Victor start attacking the defenders from behind. Soon the camp followers are running for their lives or loosing them and the smart ones run for the camels while the others die. Thriatos spots Esteria who is fleeing on a camel but fails to stop her before she gets out of range.

As the battle is over the goblins start to pile their loot. Charon aims to give a good impression by healing the wounded goblins that he can find. Thriatos and Horacio are forced to realize their missing amulet is nowhere to be found.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

The Necromancer's Legacy - part 33

Depraved of their leader, Awhero, Geb and Kaeso nevertheless decide to attempt to complete the mission they were sent on. However, first they bury Ignatia and have a small ceremony, then move their camp into the caves and out of sight.

While Kaeso tries to learn more about their quest from Ignatia's private note book, Geb and Awhero continue to explore the tomb. After finding empty crypts and a storage room left behind by a previous expedition they do come upon a closed door which they cannot open despite several attempts. Resting on the matter all three return in the following morning and successfully open the door to reveal a burial chamber, which contains a sarcophagus but apparently little else. A weak magical resonance still encourage them to investigate. Searching the tomb Kaeso determines the magic is hidden beneath the wrappings of the mummy resting within the sarcophagus. No one is however keen on disturbing the body, so they leave it alone - at least for the time being.

Beyond the chamber they find additional tombs and a corridor blocked by a collapsed ceiling. After clearing a small path they are able to squeeze through, discovering two untouched chambers filled with grave goods such as pottery, scrolls and statues. Geb is fascinated by the scrolls while Kaeso finds a magical armor and a set of magical daggers. Claiming the artifacts and a few of the scrolls they leave the room behind as the corridor is still too unstable to remain safe.

The remainer of the day they spend at the old fortress, which Geb is convinced holds a secret pathway deeper into the mountain. He is proven right when Awhero eventually finds it and it appears to reveal an even older tomb, hidden behind the other structures. They enter a large underground hall, partially filled with water and very damp. A large pool restrict their movement to the intended path, but they still see a raised platform with several sarcophagi at the other end of the hall. Although spotting something in the water as they pass by they decline to investigate as they fear it could be dangerous. However, danger is soon upon them as approaching the sarcophagi awakens the guardians of the tomb. Kaeso is forced to combat a powerful undead wielding a deadly warhammer while Awhero tries to keep more undead from entering the hall behind them. Geb, well aware of his short-comings in a battle, searches feverishly for a way out. He finds a corridor and as Awhero is unable to hold back the advancing zombies they make a run for it. Kaeso luckily manage to disarm his opponent and take its hammer before joining the others in their escape.

As they run deeper into the underground complex they end up on a corridor which stops at a strange door. Opening the door they realize it is a hidden path into yet another section of the tomb and one which can only be opened from the side from which they came. Beyond lies a new corridor and they quickly realize the danger is far from over as the corridor is filled with decomposing corpses. But they reason the danger from behind is more direct, so they close the door behind them in an attempt to fool their pursuers. There is now no way of returning.

With little choice they begin exploring the place which they have reached. The dead are soon determined to be undead fallen in battle - raising the new question of who has battled them in the first place. To the south they discover a large crystal cave hosting an altar and a large, sinister looking statue remining them of some kind of demon. Deciding it definetely feel like a trap they stay clear and instead explore some smaller caves, where they encounter a madman calling himself "You". Who he is and how he came to live in the cave remains unanswered, as too many questions drive the man into a fit and he runs away only to fall into a pit and die. The caves house some grave goods apparently tucked away but no exits - forcing them to return to the tomb and the mangled corpses.

As they explore north they come upon a man dressed all in black. He acts friendly and appears to recognize Geb. As they converse with him it is revealed he is too an undead - a servant of the ancient empire of Zhend. He offers them a choice: to serve his emperor or be killed. As it turns out, serving the emperor requires turning them into undead, so they really see they have little choice. Escorted away by a guard of undead they find themselves outside in an unfamiliar mountain region. Marching east, a sudden landslide provide Awhero and Kaeso with a chance of escape - but they are forced to leave Geb behind while doing so.

Monday, August 4, 2014

The Necromancer's Legacy - part 32

Charon, Horacio and Thriatos watches through the dust and see a shape rise from the sarcophagus of the old tomb. A creature clad in shining armor and a distinctly magical shield walks towards them with it's sword ready. Charon is quick to react - and immediately makes a run for it. Shocked by this unexpected reaction Horacio and Thriatos are momentarily confused, but realize that without their fellow mage they are unlikely to prevail and hurry after him.

As the mages run back through the grave they hear the sound of more tombs opening. Reaching the entrance they find the doors magically sealed while the other team of excavators are hammering to get out, but with no success. The room is dark but for the few lanterns bought by the group. Horacio takes command and order the two mercenaries accompanying the group to cover one corridor each. Together with the team's mage he summons earth elementals while the others prepare themselves as well as able. The sound of dragged feet is mixed with the clank of steel...

From the corridor to the right they see swords and armor reflecting the lantern light. Four tall figures clad in full body armor and wrapped in mantles marches shoulder by shoulder, each grasping a large two-handed sword. From the other corridor comes a multitude of badly rotting mummies and zombies. Charon and Horacio focus their magic on the armor clad warriors, sending lightning strikes against them. Thriatos is helping against the mummies with flames of fire, proving to be devastating against their old wrappings. The battle has commenced.

One of the mercenaries quickly fall to the four undead warriors, but Horacio takes his place and summons a second earth elemental to hold the line. Thriatos continues to offer fiery death to the mummies, who are never the less pushing closer and closer to the line of workers - but for the moment they hold their ground. At this point they see a figure coming from each of the two corridors. Both are clad in steel and carry silver swords and shields. The defending humans are hard pressed and several fall dead until Charon manage to dominate one of the undead to battle its comrades. The battle swings slowly in their favor, but as one of the silver warriors is bought down the other is soon surrounded - but still requires a hard battle to kill. The last of the mummies are killed off by the dominated undead.

As the corridors return to silence the survivors can relax for the moment, but the gates are still refusing to open. The mage from Esteria's expedition mentions they've found a door, but not any exit. Reluctantly Charon, Horacio and Thriatos are forced to share their knowledge about the goblins and they all agree to travel there, hoping to find a second exit. Luckily, the goblins appear to be elsewhere and the group hastily head through the tunnels, managing to find a hidden path leading out of the mountain before they are discovered. The expedition quickly head back towards their camp.

They are met by a somewhat impressed Esteria who withdraws to study one of the shields found by the party. For the rest of the evening the mages recouperate: reading books and reattaching Jamal's hand to the rest of his body. Thriatos summons an imp and request it to learn the goblin language for future use.

The following morning is not so calm - Thriatos is missing one of the key stones found, and one of the camp's guards appears to have been murdered. The goblins are quickly ruled out as cause of death appears to be a blade to the neck - and no one recalls seeing a 5 foot goblin. As the social atmosphere in the camp is definetely dropping towards freezing point, the three mages head back into the tomb leaving only Victor to guard their belongings. They chose to "aid" the excavation team present, which has just opened up the doors found by the other group the previous day. The room beyond appears to be another tomb, empty but for several gigantic statues adorning the walls. They are all shocked badly by the statues shooting lightning bolts from magic staves when they attempt to enter . Charon notice the floor tiles seems to be of two different colors and deduce that one is safe while the other will invoke the guardians. Using the telekinesis staff claimed from Karachen they disarm the statues by using the safe tiles in order to get close enough. In a sudden outburst of generosity, and to keep them occupied, Charon offers three of the staves to the expedition waiting outside.

With at least two chambers connecting to the room they explore the leftmost first, finding a scarp adorned with a well-worn rope ladder they are reluctant to use. With the aid of the telekinesis staff they still manage to traverse it and once below they find a massive natural cave with daylight illuminating it through a rather large hole in the ceiling. Thriatos summons his imp and as they walk through the cave they find the remains of quite a large number of dead animals. As they continue to explore the cave Horacio makes an unpleasant observation: five human-sized bat-like creatures are hanging from the ceiling, apparently sleeping - for the time being.

Monday, July 28, 2014

The Necromancer's Legacy - part 31

In the mountain grave in Pantoria, Kaeso removes the dead troll from Ignatia, who in turn use her magic to heal the party before they continue. Awhero scouts ahead and find another troll which appears to be asleep. Kaeso charges in and the troll is dead before it can cause much damage.

Meanwhile Geb is exploring a different tunnel within the cave, reasoning that his skill in battle will not add anything positive to an encounter anyway. To his surprise he finds a decidedly less than solid cave wall - he is able to walk straight through it. Behind it he finds a small cave with an apparent exit leading into the jungle. After examination he finds it too is hidden from view, but only from the outside. He goes looking for the others to share the news and finds them as they rest after the battle.

They all decide to return to their camp as night is approaching. Geb wants time to think about their discoveries so offers to take the first Watch. As the others go to sleep he works on his maps and decides not to include the secret entrance they've just found. Instead he marks its existence using some hieroglyphs which should be hard to decipher. A sudden wind which blows through camp gets him on his toes and he runs to wake up Kaeso. Too tired to respond at first, Kaeso finally awakes as Geb hits him with his leather bag. The explaination "there was a mysterious wind" is, according to Kaeso not an acceptable reason for being woke up in the middle of the night and goes back to sleep. Geb return to his post and waits for his watch to end and then goes to wake up the still grumpy Kaeso, who is next. Kaeso's watch is uneventful and he wakes Awhero who has the last watch until dawn. As the sun rises they all get up, but realizes that Ignatia is unusually late. Checking in on her, they find her sweating and tense and are unable to revive her. While Geb and Kaeso ponder the problem, Awhero head out into the jungle to find some herbs for treating her fever. Geb goes through Ignatia's backpack, finding a couple of elixirs which might prove helpful.

As the day progresses they have no luck in reviving her, despite the salve prepared by Awhero and two elixirs used. They decide the increasingly hot jungle is not a good Place for her and move into the caves.

While Kaeso stays behind to watch over Ignatia, Geb and Awhero split up to explore the cave. Geb finds what appear to be a second structure deeper within the tunnels and begins to explore it. Awhero, after reaching the end of the natural Caves, go looking for Geb and finds him inside a man-made hall. The entire structure appears to be very old and not very well preserved. Awhero discovers a room filled with old weapons and armor, but all in such a bad condition it is impossible to determine their origin.

Meanwhile Ignatia has started talking in her sleep and as Kaeso fall into a short slumber he sees strange visions and hear illusive talking. Waking up he realizes everything is not as it should be. Deciding it might be the location which is the source of the trouble he moves deeper into the cave. He too comes upon the man-made structure and finds a room where he places the mage. The sound of crashing metal force him to leave her there as he goes to investigate.

Geb has reached the conclusion that the building is an old fortress of some kind, and as he tries to make his way past the old armors Awhero found Kaeso shows up and tells them about Ignatia's worsened state. They hurry back to the room where Kaeso put her, but Geb is distracted enroute and locates a well built in the deepest part of the complex.

Kaeso and Awhero return to find Ignatia awake, but not acting as her usual self. She asks them to call her "Lord" and to continue with the business they came here for, but is unable or unwilling to offer further instructions when they mention they don't really know what they are looking for. Awhero steps outside and locate Geb to discuss the matter with him. Geb believes the mage to be possessed by a demon, but doesn't know what can be done beside killing it (and Ignatia) unless a templar trained in the art of excorsism can be found. As he cannot see how he could offer much help in either case he leaves it to Awhero and Kaeso to decide how they want to handle the situation.

Trying to get some information from Ignatia as to what is going on, the two at last convince her to return to the camp. As they arrive they both feel confident that Ignatia is no longer in control over herself and that they are dealing with something different. The creature offers to release control to "it's other part" in return for being kept secret and for them to later deliver it to a city where there are mages. Kaeso and Awhero again feel they need Geb's advice and hurry to get him. Geb really doesn't know what to say and, due to frustration, Kaeso decides to force some answers from Ignatia, who defends herself with magic. Awhero is torn by his loyalty and decides to try to put Kaeso to sleep using a poisoned dart, but the battlemage is well protected by his armor. As they continue to battle Ignatia shapechange into a second Kaeso, while expressing a growing irritation over the use of violence. The real Kaeso's powerful strikes is soon weakening the magic shield, forcing Ignatia to act. A critical failure with a teleportation spell and the creature again take the shape of Ignatia before disappearing with a look of utter surprise on its face.

Tracing the magic to the nearby cave they hurry towards the hidden entrance, only to find the revolting sight of their leader having teleported to several places at the same time. She is as dead as one can be and they still don't know what really happened.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

The Necromancer's Legacy - part 30

As the doors begin to open in the age old tomb, Charon, Thriatos and Horacio feverishly try to invent a cunning plan to avoid detection. In the end, they put out the torch and stand still, hoping not to be discovered. The real Esteria, accompanied by a group of mages and armed guards, enter and after a short stand-off between them she offers a peaceful solution and an opportunity for conversation while sharing a meal.

Accepting her invitation, the three quickly realize Esteria's expedition is very large and thus pose a serious hinderance to their mission. However, Esteria offer them to join her expedition in exploring the tomb, granting them 30% of the profits. As this allows them to explore the tomb on their own they agree. They also learn that treasure contained in the tomb cannot be brought out through the entrance due to a curse - for this reason Esteria has brought diggers to open the wall once they find a suitable place for doing so.

Putting up their tent in the camp of the expedition the three mages start making their own plans in the relative secrecy behind a thin veil of cloth. Their primary plan to use Jamal and Victor as spies within Esteria's exploration teams crumbles the moment Charon presents it to her. This leaves them Little choice but to race the expedition for the artifact they seek and so, after breakfast, they head off to explore a second corridor within the tomb.

The corridor contains many small burial Chambers, but they are sterile and of little interest or value as they contain nothing but old sarcophagi. Detecting a faint trace of necromancy they conclude the sarcophagi likely house guardians of the tomb. Two other traces of magic attract their interest, but after finding a room filled with wall etchings they loose the track.

Delving ever deeper, they eventually discover what appears to be a natural cave and an underground river. As they examine the rapid current a group of goblins attack them from the darkness. As they are fought off more arrive but Charon - using a wall of death spell - turns the scene into carnage. As the goblins flee back in terror the three mages discuss whether to pursuit or return to the tomb and eventually decides for the latter.

Attempting to pick up the lost trail they start looking for hidden doors and stumbles upon a second key stone hidden behind a secret mechanical door in a cave beneath the floor. As they grad the stone the door begin to close and Horacio again manages to rip his robe as it gets stuck when he barely makes it out of the cave.

With the key stone in hand they debate whether or not to return to camp. They decide to find the second trace of magic as, hopefully, more magic items found would make it easier for them to keep the key stone from being discovered. A second hidden door is found along with several traps which are set of by Jamal. Using their servant to clear the path the group make it into a chamber with a lone sarcophagus, which Jamal is instructed to open. But as he approaches it the stone lid is thrown off and a dense cloud of dust fills the air...

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

The Necromancer's Legacy - part 29

Geb, finding himself in a cell, is trying to relax and . He tries to start a conversation with a fellow prisoner, but the latter soon tire of his endless banter.

Kaeso, on the other hand, does not bother about relaxing - or conversing for that matter. He rushes headlong forward to the rescue, while Awhero and Ignatia decide it is best to pack their equipment before joining, as leaving the town in a hurry is quickly becoming a likely event in the near future.

With a combination of surprise and shock, Kaeso quickly kills of the militiamen guarding the entrance to the town's castle. His progress is however checked by a group of archers, but with Awhero arriving they manage to push through, capturing the militia commander in the process. They blackmail the guards into delivering Geb, who negotiates to have his cellmate released with him. With Ignatia covering their retreat they have to marsch through a crowd which has assembled outside before reaching the edge of town. The released prisoner introduces himself as Nohen and comments that they are apparently not better liked outside of town as they spot a group of Tumapec tribesmen approaching from the north. He still agree to aid the party for a generous pay offered by Ignatia.

Managing to shake of their pursuers they reach the river Pantor and travel east to the town of Moonin where Ignatia has private business to attend to. After being away she return to tell them a second stop is required before they can reach their destination further south. This stop is later revealed to be a small and rather desolate castle where they meet a group of mages lead by a certain Kanadir. While wearing the robes of a grandmaster he certainly looks out luck but still welcome the party to the residence. Geb is sent to the library to discover what he can of their final destination while Kaeso makes good use of the large laboratory found within the castle walls. Before being summoned to a well-prepared dinner Geb finds an interesting book appearing to be a research report on the very site they are looking for.

After dinner they all go to bed and thus it is soon the following morning. They prepare to leave, but not before Ignatia has persuaded Kanadir to provide them with several useful items along with a copy of the report found by Geb. Nohen continues to lead the way until they reach the town of Javibara where they separate. Thus they continue on their own from the town until they reach the mountains to the southeast and they manage to do so with no further incidents.

After finding the entrance to the tomb they seek Ignatia decides they should put up camp, but then begin researching the site immediately before it gets dark outside. The heavy bronze doors leading into the tomb appears locked, but the reason for their meeting with Kanadir becomes obvious as Ignatia produces a key.

As the report found by Geb suggests the first part of the tomb has already been investigated they start looking for the natural caves which is also mentioned. As they start exploring the tomb they quickly discover a magical presence - as well as traces of creatures living within the tomb: cave trolls. The bad news have barely been brought when they are charged by a rabid troll. With his magical axe Kaeso manage to kill the beast quite quickly, but not before Ignatia get knocked over by the troll and, together with Geb, find herself soaked in troll's blood.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

The Necromancer's Legacy - part 28

Charon, Thriatos and Horacio manage to reach Osayla without further incidents (not counting dropping their wagon into the river, but at least it was salvaged) and begin asking around for a guide. Experiencing no luck among the city's caravan drivers, Horacio gets a tip to visit a local tavern known as The Defeated Giant. There they quickly find a man named Farn who offers to take the job. They conclude their deal and after renting a room the three mages head out into the city. After locating an alchemist shop they are shadowed on their way to a tanner, which they ask to produce some specialized belts for their elixirs. Their mysterious follower does not hang around to wait and feeling fairly secure they end the day enjoying a bottle of red wine at a fine restaurant.

The following morning they begin their quest for the orb which consul Callissios tasked them with. Farn leads the way into the mountains, initially following the caravan route to Ossaria, but soon switching to a different path going south. The graveyard city, known as The King's Tomb by the locals, is somewhere ahead. After spending the night in the wild they continue - only to find they are not the first on the site. Two templars are camping outside a massive gate in the very mountain itself and the mages decide they'd best tackle the situation themselves, so pays Farn for his services and send him back to Osayla.

Prepared for trouble they speak to the men who appear to be waiting for someone other than the mages. Thriatos manage to convince them that they are part of the party soon to be arriving and gains entrance to the graveyard on the condition that the doors are shut after they've entered. They agree and soon find themselves in a grand hall as the light quickly disappears with the closing doors. Illuminated by torchlight Charon performs a ritual to protect them against undead. When he finally completes it they begin exploring the tunnels.

Following a faint magic resonance they discover a large pillar-clad hall ending with a massive stone door. Searching through the room they discover an amulet on a pediestal and begin to look ferverously for traps. Finally Charon attempts to lift the amulet with his staff of telekinesis, which appears to open a distant door as a wind suddently blow through the room. As things could be worse the mages relax and examine the amulet, which appears to be some sort of key - surely to be useful later in their quest.

Devoting their attention to the massive stone door they cannot quite shake the feeling of being followed. Then they spot the giant lizard creature clutching to the ceiling and decide to unleash their arsenal of spells. The creature is not easily brought down and tears part of Horacio's robe into shreads before being killed, but luckily no one is seriously injured.

After resting for a short moment they return their attention to the door and after managing to get it open they discover a burial chamber. Careful not to touch the equipment or the sarcofagus contained within, a chest filled with gold and gems prove to be to much temptation and they agree to take it back to the entrance.

Just having completed the task they are meet with the sound of metal scraping against stone. The doors are opening and someone is about to enter...