Monday, 18 February 2019

Commonwealth Revisited Part Two

Quick follow-on post this week to a post from last month, which detailed some changes that I wished to make to the Commonwealth. Wanted to go with a more Celtic feel for the nation, something that I hope the changes help capture. So, without further ado, I present a revised version of the Commonwealth.


Language

For the time being I'll be using Irish as the language of the Commonwealth, though I may look at doing a faux Celtic language at a later date.

The Clans

The Clans form the cornerstone of Commonwealth society and, in some cases, even influences it.
Each clan is led by a Clan Chief and is made up of a core family after which the clan is named, plus a number of affiliated families who are linked to the core family but have different surnames. Additionally, each clan maintains its own militia forces mainly protect the clan's interests as well as to help defend the Commonwealth should the need arise. 

To resolve internal disputes and help keep the clan's legal affairs in order, each clan will appoint an official known as a Justiciar. In addition to handling internal clan disputes, the Clan Justiciar also the official that deals with marriages, death certificates, etc. A Lord High Justiciar is appointed by the Crown and is charged with ensuring with keeping the peace between the various clans. 

The third important position within a Clan is the Clan Ravener, effectively the Clan's representative for dealing with those from outside of the Clan. The Raveners also form the upper house of the Commonwealth's parliament.

Governance

The governance of the Commonwealth is in three parts.

There is the Sovereign or the Crown, the ruling monarch of the Commonwealth. Depending on gender, the monarch as the title of Rí (King) if male and Banríona (Queen) if female. The monarch is the head of state, but take little direct part in governing the country and remains neutral in political affairs. The monarch's main role is to appoint the head of government and give Royal Assent to bills and thus make them into valid laws.

Then there is the Provost Court, made up of the monarch's representatives at the provincial (Lord Provosts) and county (Provosts) level. The Provost Court functions as both a formal body of advisors for the monarch and as the high court of appeal for the Commonwealth. In addition to the Lord Provosts and Provosts, the Provost Court also counts the Lord High Justiciar and head of government amongst its members.

Finally there is the Commonwealth Parliament, or Oireachtas, which is the legislature of the Commonwealth. There is upper house called Badhgan's Chamber, or the Chamber of Ravens, and is comprised of the Raveners from the various Clans. The lower house is called the Assembly, or Dáil, and is made up of elected officials called Assembly Delegates. The Taoiseach (or Leader), and head of government, comes from the Assembly and must hold the confidence of the chamber in order to remain in office.

Law Enforcement

The Garda (or the Guards) form a national police force for the Commonwealth, though it does provide local policing in some areas. The Garda tends to focus its efforts on high profile crime and internal threats to the Commonwealth. Local policing tends to be in the hands of smaller police forces generally called town or city watches, though provincial level forces also exist. The watchmen of these forces provide day-to-day policing, though cases may overlap with the Garda.

Monday, 11 February 2019

Frozen Skies Episode 16: Revenge of the Burning Knives

Last time our intrepid crew pulled off an airship heist and framed a rival gang for the crime in the process. For one character it really was the chance to shine...and almost die in the process. It was also the opportunity for a new character to join the crew, filling a spot that had recently and tragedy been made vacant.

This week the crew were in for an unexpected and potentially nasty surprise...


Revenge of the Burning Knives

Having successfully pulling of the airship heist, collateral death and damage notwithstanding, the crew returned to Gravenburgh in triumph. After docking their airship, the crew found themselves being greeted by a smartly dressed gentlemen who handed them a note about meeting Andrei. Heading to the location, they found it to be outside the airport terminal and in the form of Andrei's limo where they'd previously met the Tylander keeper of secrets. Sebastian set himself up on top of a nearby billboard with his sniper rifle as Alex and Herbert got in the limo. Jacob, after giving the limo a little bit of a head start, followed after the limo on foot.

As expected, the limo driver took a roundabout route to his destination. Jacob tried keeping up with the vehicle, but ultimately fell far behind long before the car reached its eventual destination. Alex and Herbert found themselves outside a club, though were directed through it to the other side of the building. Following further instructions, the duo climbed to the top floor of a nearby tenant block where Alex finally met Andrei. Money for a job well done was handed over, snippets of another job made and it was casually mentioned that the Burning Knives gang were looking to ambush the crew at their airship.

Luckily Alex had a radio on him to warn the others back on the airship about the attack as he and Herbert raced back as quickly as they could. Jacob got the ratings onboard the Stormrider organised into some form of defence as Sebastian kept a sharp look out for anyone trying to sneak up on the airship, though it was Jacon had had the sharper eyes. Spying some shadowy figures moving into cover behind some nearby crates, Jacob brought his pistols up and hot lead filled the air as the figures opened up with a volley of rifle fire. Despite standing right out in the open, Jacob fared far better than the figures who'd fired upon him be felling them in a blaze of gunfire.

Meanwhile, Alex and Herbert arrived on the scene and found themselves behind the gang. The good doctor, armed with a trusty SMG, proceeded to mow down half the gang in surge of energy. Unnoticed, Alex managed to stalk up to one of the gang members and introduce the man to the business end of Alex's gun cane. Then the heavy machine guns of the airship were brought into play and decimated the gang, forcing most of the survivors to flee. The gang leader, Pete Wisdom, gave his position by shouting at the fleeing remnants of his gang. Sebastian, homing in like a bat on its prey, wasted no time and fell Pete Wisdom with a single shot to the head.

Alex and Jacob hurried over and found Pete to be still alive, only just, though it wouldn't be for long as Alex had reloaded his gun cane and took the chance of taking out an enemy. As the crew took stock of the aftermath of the very one-sided battle, police sirens wailed in the distance. Presenting his bounty hunter warrant and credentials, Jacob managed to convince the constables that the battle was fought in self-defence. Rather fortunate as the gang had only recently had bounties placed on them for sky piracy,  uncanny timing one might say. The crew also got Ardent Gowan's goods back, the paperwork now 'fully resolved'.

Finally the crew found out that Andrei's latest job was a train heist whilst Jacob found some juicy bounties to go after.

Thoughts

It proved to be another fun session, the highlight had to be the Burning Knives rolling 18 on an unskilled Stealth roll without the aid of a Wild Die. Though, as mentioned above, both Herbert and Jacob were able to spot them.

Sebastian also got a chance to shine, dropping an enemy Wild Card with a single shot.

Interesting to see where the players go from here since they have the train job from Andrei or the bounties Jacob managed to find.

Monday, 4 February 2019

Update Feb 2019

Well, its been a while since an update was posted.

Now we've settled into a new year its probably an idea to make a post about whats planned for Utherwald in 2019. The big news is probably going to be Frozen Skies and SWADE related, but some other stuff will be covered.

Frozen Skies

Its already been mentioned that Frozen Skies will be updated to the Adventure Edition of Savage Worlds.

Have been working on an update document, which covers the changes needed for Frozen Skies to conform with SWADE. The last real job left to do is update the Bestiary and NPCs found in the book as well as going over the air combat rules to see whether any improvements can be made.

A Jumpstart for SWADE is ready to go, just waiting for it to go out to the SWADE Kickstarter backers before it gets put on general release. It features some new content and an adventure that I hope captures the feel of Frozen Skies.

Then it'll be a case of updating the book and releasing a SWADE version, though the Savage Worlds Deluxe version will remain on sale. It is my intention to have separate listings for the different versions.

After all that, the next release planned for Frozen Skies is called Skies of Crimson. This book will focus on the sky pirates of the setting; showcasing a few gangs, feature a more detailed look at Broken Spires and more air combat related content.

Other Projects

Some of you may recall a series of posts about various Setting Ideas, basically ideas for settings other than Frozen Skies. The various ideas are as follows;

Cold War Skirmishes - Covering lesser well-known conflicts of the Cold War period.

Darkwatch - Heroes fight to restore order in a city recently liberated from dark forces.

Forsaken Space - Scavenging for relics in the alien ruins of a dead galaxy.

Gwentshire Chronicles - Confronting the supernatural horrors of an English county throughout the ages.

Keep The Home Fires Burning - Supernatural horror amidst a plague ravaged post-WW1 London.

It is hoped that each of these will see the light of day as Jumpstarts, then followed by full books for each setting.

Also looking to update a previously made fan adventure to SWADE and release it through the Savage Worlds Adventurer's Guild, stay tuned for further updates on this.

Misc

One of the other things I'm hoping to do this year is update the blog/site and reorganise stuff.