Sunday 25 February 2018

Sodkan Imperial Remnants

Prior to the Great Darmonican War, the Holy Sodkan Empire was considered one of the 'great powers' of Darmonica and held sway over extensive territories. During the course of the war, the Empire suffered huge reversal of fortune and splintered into the Iron Collective and the Union of Sodkan Republics. There are many who mourn the lost of the Empire, there are also others who seek its restoration.

The Imperial Remnants in Alyeska

As territory controlled by a wartime enemy of the Empire, Alyeska may seem an odd choice for Sodkan Imperialists to establish themselves. Alyeska is a frontier land and the Commonwealth's hold isn't absolute (as Broken Spires will attest), meaning that there are places that the Imperialists can claim as their own. Whilst it means that they have greater freedom to act, it also means that they are also vulnerable to attack. For now, Commonwealth control over Alyeska seems to be a deterrence against the Iron Collective and the Imperialists view it as a necessary evil.

The Imperialists' goal is the overthrow of the Iron Collective and the restoration of the Holy Sodkan Empire. However, there are many different ideas as to how that can be achieved. Presently the main focus is on hiring privateers to attack Iron Collective shipping, the purpose for this is twofold; the Imperialists get a cut of the plunder to help fund themselves and at the same time they learn a little more about the tactics of the Iron Collective. For this they rely on agents outside of Alyeska, though with the skyships of the Iron Fleet having been spotted in Alyeskan skies they've hired privateers closer to home.

Second option being explored is the idea of stirring up insurrections within the borders of the Iron Collective. The idea of the Sodkan people rising up against the Order of the Great Machine is as appealing as it is ironic, the Order effectively did the same thing in its rise to power. The biggest hurdle is providing support to the insurrections as it will have to come through the Union of Sodkan Republics. However, the Republics have been less than willing to back this idea and so the Imperialists have started trying to get their people into positions of influence.

The third and final option is also the most drastic: Forming a new Sodkan Empire in Alyeska. Doing this would put the Imperialists at odds with the Commonwealth, since not surprisingly the Commonwealth will react angrily. It would require a heavy commitment from the Imperialists as they would need to raise their own military and fight a costly war to achieve their goal. There isn't much support for this idea, but that support may grow if other options final to materialize in what the Imperialists want.

Sunday 18 February 2018

Rogue's Gallery: Fayra Lockwood

Whilst there are hundreds, if not thousands, of souls living in Alyeska only a few wield any degree of influence on the world around them. Some are in positions of power, others rely on might and bloodshed. There are some who are most subtle, yet their actions still send ripples across Alyeska and even beyond. One of these people is the Commonwealth's top agent in Alyeska and the Queen's personal troubleshooter; Fayra Lockwood.

Fayra Lockwood

Daughter of Lord Henry Lockwood, a noted Commonwealth adventurer and decorated soldier.

Fayra was born during the tenth year of the Great Darmonican War, her father was already widely renown and high decorated at this point. Lord Henry had been badly injured on a mission and was recovering at the time, though it would be some months before he was allowed back on active service. Sensing an opportunity, some Tylander agents attempted to put him out of action for good and ended up killing Fayra's mother in the process. Grief stricken and furious, Lord Henry slewed all but one of the enemy agents who very willingly handed himself over to the authorities and turned Crown's evidence. Not fully recovered from his injuries, Lord Henry led the efforts to neutralizing the Tylander spy ring in the Home Isles.

Once his anger had subsided, Lord Henry turned his focus to his infant daughter and vowed to teach her everything he knew. Soon as her father deemed her old enough, Fayra started learning the skills that her father deemed important enough for her survival. By the time she enrolled at the Royal Military Academy she was already highly skilled and was fast-tracked towards espionage. When she was finally cleared for operations she proved herself just as capable an agent as her father, if not more so. During her time at the Royal Military Academy she met the future Queen Lothwyn Cathmore and the two became fast friends. When Lothwyn succeeded her own father to become reigning monarch of the Commonwealth she invited Fayra to be her personal troubleshooter, which Fayra accepted.

Fayra arrived in Alyeska a couple of years ago and has been active protecting the interests of the Crown and, by extension, the Commonwealth. Her main efforts have been directed towards investigating the disappearance of the Lieutenant-Governor of the province of New Gwentia, which have led her to keep a close eye on Sir Broone Langworth (the Lieutenant-Governor of Eastern Alyeska). She works closely with the Governor-General Sir Douglas Fredrick-Davenport to head off threats that could threaten to destabilize Commonwealth rule in Alyeska. She could prove to be a major ally for the characters, though she can just as easily be a major enemy if the characters seek to destroy the Commonwealth's hold over Alyeska.

Attributes: Agility d8, Smarts d8, Spirit d6, Strength d6, Vigor d6
Skills: Climbing d6, Driving d6, Fighting d10, Investigation d8+2, Lockpicking d8, Notice d8+2, Persuasion d6, Shooting d10, Stealth d8, Streetwise d8+2, Taunt d8
Charisma: +2; Pace: 6; Parry: 8; Toughness: 6 (1)
Hindrances: Loyal, Overconfident, Vow (Minor/Commonwealth)
Edges: Alertness, Ambidextrous, Attractive, Assassin, Block, Improved Block, Combat Reflexes, Dead Shot, Dodge, Improved Dodge, Elan, Extraction, Investigator, Level Headed, Improved Level Headed, Luck, Great Luck, Marksman, Mighty Blow, No Mercy, Quick, Quick Draw, Steady Hands, Thief, Two-Fisted
Gear: 2x Revolver (12/24/48, 2d6, RoF 1, Shots 6, Revolver), Dagger (Str+d4), Rapier (Str+d4), Leather Armor

Sunday 11 February 2018

Rogue's Gallery: Genchi Clubmen

A second Rogue's Gallery in a row?

What madness is this?

Its part of some ideas I've to further flesh out and develop the world of Darmonica to make it seem more like a living, breathing world. The recent Airman's Gazetteer series was part of this and so will be a few Rogue's Gallery posts. This week's post expands a bit on Genci culture and provides potential allies or enemies for the characters to encounter.

Ghetto Vigilantes

The Genchi are treated as second-class citizens throughout Darmonica. They are forced to live in slums and ghettos with the vast majority living below the poverty line. They are often accused of thievery and the law virtually never ever comes down on their side. Human gangs will frequently target Genchi ghettos or slums with a sizeable Genchi population, knowing that for the most part they can get away with doing so.

In response the Genchi have formed gangs of vigilantes to protect their homes, something that has sparked increasingly violent responses from Human gangs as well as the police. These Genchi vigilantes are often called 'Clubmen' due to the fact that most of them are armed with clubs, the main weapon that is readily and easily available to them. Other blunt weapons and even knives aren't uncommon, though its rare to see a fireman and even then its typically a pistol.

Most Genchi clubmen are young males, normally led by a handful of older and wiser males. Females aren't unheard of, but they tend to be the most vicious fighters. They style themselves as a street gang and will even name themselves. The Gaff Street Cutters of Lindun are a particularly infamous gang having been featured in Commonwealth newsheets and even debated about in parliament due to their street battles with the police.

Attributes: Agility d8, Smarts d6, Spirit d6, Strength d6, Vigor d6
Skills: Driving d4, Fighting d6, Notice d8, Repair d8, Shooting d6, Stealth d6
Charisma: -2; Pace: 6; Parry: 5; Toughness: 5
Hindrances: Outsider, Vengeful (Minor)
Edges: McGyver, Mechanic
Gear: Clubs, knives, occasionally pistols

Sunday 4 February 2018

Rogue's Gallery: The Black Talons

Herein we return to highlighting denizens and persons of note that inhabit the frigid land of Alyeska.

Whilst a great many good natured souls call Alyeska home, there are a few who bear dark stains. Bandits and sky pirates immediately spring to mind, the newsheets certainly help keep them front and center in people's minds. There is another group, a group infamous for its bloody reign of terror in the Alyeskan wilderness.

They are a band of Windryders who call themselves the Black Talons.

The Black Talons

Though there have been recorded instances of clashes between Humans and Windryders, typically they have been caused by the Windryders being provoked by Humans trespassing on or desecrating land scarce to the Windryders. Other times it has been the Windryders acting out of self-defence as Humans have raided a Windryder stead. Though recently there have been attacks against outlaying settlements by a ruthless band of Windryders.

The Black Talons.

They are a band of Windryders seemingly want on the destruction of Human settlements and can be easily identified by a burn mark on their left cheek. This burn mark looks like the rough shape of a bird's talons and a Windryder receives this mark when they join the band. Each member of the Black Talons has either suffered a perceived wrong committed by Humans or view Humans as invaders defiling Alyeska. They are considered outcasts by the various Windryder tribes, though that doesn't stop new members from joining.

Their leader Khargi is well known for his hatred of Humans, his tribe was wiped out by a gang of sky pirates who wanted the tribe's stead and dragonhawk eggs. It was he who formed the Black Talons after finding others who'd suffered at the hands of Humans and soon started raiding remote settlements and logging camps. They only use traditional Windryder weapons like bows and spears, so they limit their attacks to raids on lightly defended settlements with the intention of destroying or killing what they can. Some younger members have advocated for the use of rifles, but Khargi has rejected by brutally maiming the most vocal supporter for using these weapons.

Human characters, or groups with Humans in them, will most certainly encounter the Black Talons as enemies. Genchi characters' experiences will depend on how in favour of technology the Black Talons are in your game. Windryder characters will be mistrusted, but the Black Talons won't be openly hostile to them.

Attributes: Agility d8, Smarts d6, Spirit d6, Strength d6, Vigor d6
Skills: Fighting d6, Notice d8, Riding d8, Shooting d6, Stealth d6, Survival d6
Charisma: -2/-4; Pace: 6; Parry: 5; Toughness: 6 (1)
Hindrances: Outsider, Bloodthirsty, Vengeful (Minor)
Edges: Beast Bond, Heart of the North
Gear: Bow (12/24/48, 2d6, RoF 1, Min Str d6), Spear (Str+d6, Parry +1, Reach 1, 2 hands), knife (Str+d4), leather armor

Khargi's Agility, Smarts, Fighting, Riding and Shooting all increase one die. In addition he gains the Command and Block edges.