Ryder: Ryders are the knights of the Dragon Wing world. Their formidable dragon mount is imprinted to them. They defend the world from the falling Zhan, hunt and destroy corrupted thing, and enforce the common law. Ryders are a rough and tumble group knowing that they could meet death at any time. These “wild things” play as hard as they work. Ryders are the heroes of reality, history, and the sagas of Kerren.
[Note Ryder is used to express role of dragon rider, rather than rider which could be anyone on a dragon.]
L-COM +L-ATH +BND -.4x
L-COM +L-ATH +ANI -.4x
Wing Leader: Dragon prides tend to fly in groups of seven. This became the basis of the Wing. A wing leader is in charge of seven Ryders. He is their commander, their trainer, and their representative to the council and the people. He gets them supplies, coordinates their patrols, makes sure everything is done. It is a job of a hundred demands, few can deal with all of these responsibilities, even with these edges. Wing leaders are the true heroes of Kerren.
L-COM +L-ATH +BND +INF “Ward” -.2x
Edge: A Wingleader’s Lieutenant is called an Edge, as the Edge flies in position furthest from the Leader. An Edge should be a Ryder’s Ryder, tougher, stronger, and faster than the rest. They achieve and hold this position through their reputation and performance of Ryder activities. While traditionally, they are the Wing’s trainers, they have all the responsibilities of a wing leader, yet none of the power. Their reputation is all they have, and in many cases, all they need to get things done in the Ward and to keep the Ryders in line. Many Ryders never aspire to be a Wing Leader, but Edges.
COM +ATH +BND +STA “Edge or Ryder” -0x
A Ryder can shift to any of these Archetypes if they are promoted. An Edge or Wing Leader, can demote to Ryder if they desire.
Wing Warden: Wing wardens are in charge of the care and feeding of dragons. Ideally, one wing warden would cover one wing, but the world is not always ideal. In some Wards, one warden covers three wings, supported by Scales. Dragons are touchy creatures, it takes a great deal of skill, patience, and empathy, to deal with them. Most wing wardens are female, like most Ryders are male. A wing is very protective of their wing warden, so any one that hurts her in any way has to answer to the entire wing. A senior wing warden is selected to report to the Warden and Council about the Dragons.
The Sagas seem to make wing leaders manly men, and wing wardens beautiful women, who were always a couple... much like we Americans think of the Homecoming queen/ head cheerleader and the Captain of the Varsity Football team.
ANI “Dragon” +F-ANI “Healing” +SOC +PER +PRF “musical instrument”
Scales: These are the wing warden’s assistants and apprentices. In large Wards, one will work with each wing. There are always a few extra scales hanging around the Ward to cover the need for extra work. While they can care for dragons, their main assignment is to watch over the Dragon Eggs. [In some huge Wards in time past, there was a Scale Warden who watched over the hatchery.] Scales are often in charge of making sure the light moss in the Warren is moist. Many a young girl has become a scale to meet a Ryder to fall in love with, much the way many girls in America become cheerleaders to meet athletic guys.
ANI “Dragon” +SOC + PRF “musical instrument” -.4x
A scale can shift to Wing Warden, if they are promoted.
Councilor: Councilors are those that assist the Warden in the running of the Warren and related Clusters. They are part of the council which advises the Warden and can veto his decisions. Some take on the responsibility of actually administrating some aspect of the Warren or Cluster. Councilors can also determine who can and can not be part of yearly imprinting ceremony. Most councilors are High Blood, but a few are retired Wing Leaders.
There is no single stereotype of councilor. Some examples from the Sagas are: graying scholars full of learning, mustachioed schemers looking to further their own (and their family’s) power, Grizzled Ryder veterans, inbred idiots, stingy traders who want to account for every piece of equipment, young romantic and impractical idealists, or prideful Primes. All councilor LifeFoci should have INF and STA
INF “Ward” +STA “Councilor” +KNW -.3x
INF “Ward” +STA “Councilor” +CMU -.4x
INF “Ward” +F-INF “Ryders” +L-COM+L-ATH+BND -.1x
INF “Ward” +STA “Councilor” +GUL +PER -.2x
L-ATH +L-COM +ANI +INF “Ward” -.2x
INF “Ward” +STA “Eligible Bachelor” + PRF +SOC -.2x
Crafter: Those that make things. These are the workers of wood, leather, clay, metal, or other material. They take raw materials and make the things the people of the Ward or Cluster need and use. They live in the Clusters protected by the Ryders. While not a glamorous position, no Ward or Cluster could survive long without them.
BUS +CFT or TEC +L-INF “Credit” -.5x/.4x
Healer: Healer serves their community by healing damage done to the body and the mind. They practice art of healing on the body of the sick and injured, using herbal and chemical medicines, alignment of the body [acupressure, acupuncture, chiropractic], and some advanced surgical techniques. In addition they help the mind as well as the body, helping people cope with grief, fear, or doubt. They have a role akin to the Native American Medicine Man, taking the role of councilor, priest, and therapist for their communities. They often help those who are not emotionally imbalance [traditionally hot tempered and wild Ryders]. They are a practical group. “What ever works” is a quote often applied to a Healer. This makes them contrary to the very traditional folk of Kerren.
SCI +DED+ KNW +CMU -.1x
Herder: Those who watch over a flock of Gips just outside the Cluster [or village for Outlanders]. These herders (and their herds) are important because they allows a Ward to feed Dragons without having to give them time off to hunt.
ANI +PER +L-COM +L-ATH -.2x
Prime: A Highblood that is in charge of a Free Ward, an independent Cluster or set of small Cluster outside the boundaries of the Ward. They act as the Warden for these areas and can choose to sit on the Ward Council, if they wanted to leave their holdings. The position of Prime is passed to the next deserving candidate, usually the oldest son.
STA ”Prime” +INF “FreeWard” +CMU +L-ATH +L-COM -0x
Quiet Edge: The warden’s assistant or chief advisor. This is an “unofficial position”. The Warden’s Edge is normally doing things behind the scene and seldom is publicly acknowledged. [Some of these things are sometimes ... questionable.] The reasoning for this is that the Edge can not be bribed, threatened, or manipulated.
COM +ATH +BND +either STA or INF “Ward” -0x
RyderMate: These are the lovers and mates of Ryders [and WingWardens, and others who live and work in the Ward/ Warren] who serve no other function for the Ward [though some of the mates used to be Scales and some occasionally serve that purpose.] They are the social glue of the Ward and the source of most social conflicts, as they tend to live the life of drama [Many of the sagas detail the “soap opera” of the RyderMates.] While most are females, a few are males.
There is no single stereotype of Ryder mates. Some examples from the Sagas are: Wise and helpful women, Vain scornful harpies, Mothers of a clutch of children, Greedy social climbers, Efficient matrons, Romantic fools, and Dedicated Scales.
CFT “Household” +STA “Ward” + either ANI, SCI, KNW, SCI
Sage (Saga Masters): These are individuals who have spent a great deal of time studying The Sagas and everything else they can get their hands on. They are repositories of knowledge for the people. Normally a sage has retired from some other position [usually Crafter, Traders, or Healers], so they will either change to this archetype over time or have those abilities in their backgrounds.
The stereotypical Sage is white haired, wrinkled old man, though women and younger men who are injured and unable to continue in their positions sometimes take on the role.
CFT “Household” +STA “Ward” + either ANI, SCI, KNW, SCI
Trader: These are the merchants of Kerren. They sell Crafter and Outlander goods in the local Wards and Clusters, and move them about by either Overland [with Outlanders] or by Dragon [hence their relationship with Wards], and sell them in other Wards and Clusters. In a society without money, it is their ledgers that control the flow of credit.
BUS +INF ”Credit” +CON -.4x
Warden: The Warden is the leader of a given Ward: The Warren and all the surrounding Clusters [and their outlander villages if any] and nearby Wilds. They must protect any FreeWards adjacent to the Wards. The Warden is responsible for everything and everyone within the Ward. The Warden and the Ward Council determine how to distribute all the Ward’s resources [food, goods, fuel, protection]. The Ryders enforce the Warden’s decisions, acting as arbitrators, tax collectors, and police men. The Warden is appointed by the Ward Council
STA +INF “Ward” or “Credit” +CMU +L-ATH +L-COM -0x
OUTLAND AND WILDS
Outlander: Outlanders live in small villages rather than in a proper Cluster. [This mean that they are exposed to the potential dangers of the Zhan. Good citizens shudder and gasp at the thought.]. Many Clusters have a few Outlander villages around them, that are considered part of the Cluster’s rule, like a Ward will have a number of Clusters under its rule. Most Outlanders are farmers who can not find enough land near the Cluster. The others are crafters, usually carpenters.
CFT +ATH -.5x
Wilder: Those who make a living by hunting and tracking in, and traveling through the forest [and other wild areas] of Kerren. They deal in deep forest goods that only those skilled in the wood [and willing to go well beyond the areas near a Cluster] can obtain. It is a lonely profession, as their travels take them away from Clusters and people frequently avoid someone so strange as to want to go away from the safety of a Cluster. Wilders will act as scouts for any traders who will bring goods between wards. Wilders frequently work with a warren and its Ryders to locate and destroy Zhan that make it to ground in the wilds.
ATH+ COM +SUR -.2x
OutWalkers: Outwalker is a Wilder who possesses a bond to an animal other than a dragon. They receive training in bonding from the Warren, but can not live there long as the Dragon’s might snack upon their beasts. They work as ground based scouts and hunters for the Warren.
BND+ ATH +COM +SUR -.0x
Slayer: A driven tortured soul that travel the land slaying Zhan. After losing everything [usually a family or loved one to a Zhan], a Slayer takes The Vow. Slayers move from the Wilds to the Outlands to the Clusters and back hunting and destroying their prey. All in an attempt to fill the emptiness in their soul.
COM +ATH +SUR +PER -.0x
Some sidebars for this area....
At the bottom of this column
Best Stock Character Seeds
Want some great characters for your campaign? Pick an actor or fictional character and imagine what they would be like in a given role/ Archetype. Imagine a Young William Shatner (ala ST original series) as your Wing Leader or Warden, Charlton Heston as a Councilor or Prime, Lara Croft as your Edge or Wing Warden, Jack Ryan (Harrison Ford in Airforce One) as your Highborn opponent. Lawrence of Arabia as the leader of a rogue Cluster or Wilder group, etc. Using known people and characters as the basis for character’s in your campaign makes it easier for players to relate to them. It also allow you to have pictures for your NPCs (and sometimes your PC).
ALSO: NO DRAGONS AS PRIMARY CHARACTERS. It would be the equivalent of playing a very smart horse or a an intelligent and trained dog, or a very stupid human being. Unless you were a wild dragon, you would be subordonate (or under the command of) to another player or NPC Ryder. You would also be left out of most of the game interactions. In short, while it sounds fun, it won’t be fun for very long.
Dragon Troupe: We recommend using other players to run the supporting cast of the game, this includes dragons. This allows the dragons to have a little personality without taking up GM effort. Now as an NPC, it can be a kind of fun.