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[Coldforged] Shadows of War

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Ancient Gamer:
I am going to GM  a game for those who might be interested. The game will begin sometime between june and september.

I am going to actually give the players stats and skills. It is going to be a simple system, designed to give you an overall powerlevel for reference when playing your character.

The system
**Simple system for reference**
1: Skill: Untrained. Statistic: severe weakness/vulnerability
2: Skill: Weak. Stat: weak
3: Skill: Average. Stat: normal
4: Skill: Good. Stat: strong
5: Skill: Excellent. Stat: very strong
6: Skill: Master. Stat: Amazing
7+: Skill: Divine. Stat: Divine (NA to players)
Every skill and stat begin at 1 and can be added to by the player.

Stats: (start with 7 points)
(All stats automatically get 1 point, and you can add a total of 7 points to the three stats. A sample distribution is Physique 3, Appearance and divine favour: 3 and Agility: 4)
Physique 1-6
Strength, stamina and toughness

Appearance and divine favour 1-6
Used when roleplaying (your actions determine your persuasion, bartering and such skills, but appearance matters. Divine favour matters when it comes to randomness and luck).

Agility 1-6
Used for evasion, running speed and initiative
Skills:  (start with 7 points)
(All start at 1. Sample distribution#1: Melee 5, Ranged 2, Subterfuge 3, all else 1-
Sample distribution#2: Melee 2, Language: Imperial speech 4, Lore: Imperial lore 4)
Melee 1-6 (general weapon skill. You choose which weapons... (yes, the system is this simple)
Ranged 1-6 (whether slung, shot or thrown)
Subterfuge 1-6 (Stealth related skills, includes hiding and sleight of hand)
Instant spellcasting: 1-6 (quick convenience spells. Please come up with interesting description and gameplay)
Ritual spellcasting: 1-6 (powerful but demanding spells. These spells are excellent roleplaying material in themselves)
Other: (Might be any craft or skill that is appropriate (ie. herbalism is ok,  biochemistry is not) Languages and lore are available and will be detailed to those who wish to allot skillpoints to such.

Ok. This is a trivial system I had in mind. The purpose is to create a character as you guys normally do, but in addition you send me the stats and skills per pm. The obvious intention is to have something to base the roleplaying on. If you have 1 in melee, you won't swing your sword Conan-style. If you have 1 in physique, you will definitely be knocked out by a woman's punch, unless you manage to avoid the punch, and so on.

One thing: having a number as reference is a poor excuse for writing stuff like: "I attack with my 4 skill shortsword lunge"... Roleplay as you normally do, the numbers are for reference an d will be used by me and me alone (other than giving you an idea of your general skill level).

The initial cast
The initial cast
Craeth Calwydden, age 36 Ardamian Mercenary Captain (Ardamians are fair skinned humans from the eastern province of Silmaroth)
Hans Sternflucht, Squad Sergeant and immediate superior of the PCs. Age 28 Silmarian Mercenary Sergeant.
Marcus El-Keddath, wealthy noble, expedition sponsor and member of the royal court, Age 45 Silmarian Noble.
"Turedon", muscular attendant of Marcus's. Age 23, tattooed mountain tribal.
Irath Conkellon, age 44 master chef from the conquered lands.
Some 3 beautiful and fur clad "servants". Pleasure girls owned by Marcus.
Some 43 surviving mercenaries, not counting the PCs (which are also recently hired mercs)
Brave PC mercenaries. The last survivors of Hans Sternflucht's squad.

The initial story
War. War has come to the northern Kingdom of Silmaroth and the mercenaries are flocking to the banners of the King. In the south the imperials are moving, their legions are pouring across the borders, supported by their famous cavalry archers, and backed up by the lethal spell fire of the Imperial Viziers, the dogs of chaos. Helpless villages are razed to the ground, and the air is torn by the screams of the innocents. The Kingdom is in dire peril. For all its might and all its armies, the kingdom has been caught unprepared. Before the King had managed to muster his army, the towns of Eckholt and Malenna had already fallen, quickly becoming fortified strongholds, filled to the brim of enemy soldiers.

In the middle of all this are the Chosen of Captain Craeth, a mercenary band whose luck has seen better days. Yet, one month ago, it seemed that their luck might finally turn to the better. In the port town of Arbad, the famous noble, Marcus El-Kaddath, was hiring. The mission was an expedition of national importance, a journey into the mountain range known as the Cyllereans, to visit the ancient remains of Ũr-Keldon, the fallen city of Kings, where the royal line once dwelt. So the captain agreed, the pockets of the men were filled with precious silver, 10% paid in advance, and after nights of partying the noble and his entourage arrived. Soon the journey had begun.

Yet only some hours ago, after two weeks of travel, over two thirds of the mercenaries perished. In one fell stroke, mountain tribals had ambushed the mercenaries killing them by the dozens. The incident occurred just as the company was ascending a hillside amidst large boulders and steep cliffs. The winding trail they followed had taken them to a place where the wind swept through a narrow pass, a grove of trees blocking the line of sight. Just as most of the mercenaries had entered the pass, the savages had struck, and the mercenaries could only die, with no room to manoeuvre, the surprise disrupted their unity, rendered them unable to organize proper defences. They died screaming. Yet the captain had survived; he had stayed behind to supervise the passage of his men.

And so the story begins, a couple of hours later, as fatigued soldiers cautiously probe their way through the Kettlemire woods, where the Broken Hills connect with Mount Keadle, and the ascent up into the mountains begin in earnest. Occasionally screams tear through the forest, as some mercenaries come in contact with advance elements of the savages in pursuit. There is fear in the cold, mountain air, and the chants of the tribals only grow louder.

The Protagonists
Brave heroes are needed, to play the role as hapless mercenaries, on the run, between a rock and a hard place.

Ancient Gamer:
Death, unconsciousness and dying
Death is possible in this game, although the threshold of death should be acceptably high for all players involved.
Death is based on:
Divine favour (luck)
Physique (damage capacity)
Armour and shields (includes protective magic)(blocking damage)
Agility (evading damage)
Melee skill (parrying)

Please notice that prolonged absences from the game WILL decrease your divine favour. When it reaches suitably low levels, death becomes an imminent danger in every situation.

...and of course: PLAYER STUPIDITY has a certain influence

Michael Jotne Slayer:
I'm in. There seems to be no hurry in having a character ready in the next few days :D . So I will take my time making one.
I'll PM him to you in a few weeks. Hope this game starts in june though,
I can hardly wait until September.

Ancient Gamer:
I mentioned september to cut myself some slack. It is a worst case, the world as we know it has ended, scenario.

Alright, I'm willing to try nearly anything. Let's go!


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