Tale of the Crystal Princess. An Arcana Evolved Game. OOC
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  1. #1

    Tale of the Crystal Princess. An Arcana Evolved Game. OOC

    IC Thread

    "Once upon a time, when wishes still worked, there was a fabulous kingdom ruled by a wise King and Queen. One day, they were blessed by the Light with a beautiful baby daughter, whom they doted upon. As she grew older, her beauty grew with her. All loved her, but her popularity did not make her unkind or arrogant, as it sometimes can. On the contrary, she was kind-hearted and generous, a friend to those less fortunate and a champion of the poor. She could sing and dance far better than anyone in the kingdom, she was brave but never foolhardy, forthright but never cruel. She studied as hard as she played, and the King and Queen were very proud of her.

    "But on her eighteenth birthday the Royal Palace was visited by an evil sorceress. Nobody knows what went on, except the King and Queen, but when the sorceress left she had turned the beautiful princess into a statue made of the finest, most delicate glass. Some people in the kingdom said that the sorceress was jealous of the princess's beauty, others that there was a prophecy that the princess would be the one to kill the evil sorceress. Others muttered that King and Queen had upset the sorceress; the King was known to be short-tempered, and the Queen could be haughty and proud on occasion. But all agreed that no amount of rudeness warranted having your only child turned into a glass statue.

    "The decree went out. Whoever could find a way to restore the princess to life would win her hand in marriage, half the kingdom, a fortune in gold, as much cake as they could eat, or whatever else their hearts desired. Many heroes and heroines stepped forwards to find a way to break the curse, but none succeeded. Time passed, the years turned, the King and Queen got older and still their daughter was not restored. In their grieving, they neglected the kingdom, and darkness crept into the forests and the mountain valleys, the land was beset by fearsome monsters, and broken apart by wars. A terrible shadow darkened the heart of the kingdom just as it darkened the hearts of the King and Queen.

    "Fifty years have now gone by since the princess was cursed. Few now take up the challenge of breaking the sorceress spell, as everyone believes it is a fools errand, a hopeless task. Without hope, the Light fails. In our time we could see it go out forever, unless new heroes step forth."

    The Setting Overview.
    The Kingdom of Peladar can roughly be described by a long rectangular shape, bordered by mountains to the north, west and south, and sea to the east. It is split down the middle by a huge north-south running cliff into Upper Peladar (west) and Lower Peladar (east). Upper Peladar is largely forested, including the deep dark Hexenwald. The Black River runs west to east, tumbling over the cliff into Lower Peladar, where it splits into many smaller channels and eventually reforms as the White River, flowing out to sea by the city of Mournharbour. Sited at the Black River Falls is Candlespire Keep, home to the King and Queen and capital city of Peladar.

    Since the enchantment of their daughter, royal rule is failing. Peladar, particularly Lower Peladar, is collapsing into Duchies and Baronies engaged in petty squabbles and war. Recently, a powerful warlord calling himself Lord Ironheart has arisen, based at Castle Lament in Mournharbour, and he is subjugating the smaller baronies under his rule.

    To the south is the Caliphate of Suliman, actually just as much a loose conglomeration of squabbling satrapies as Peladar. Although the two nations are at peace, friction arises due to minor points of religious doctrine and cross-border bandit raids.

    To the north are the fearsome Isenfjoll mountains, home to fierce Kozakh tribesmen and cold-loving monsters.

    A complex archipelago lies off the eastern sea shore, beyond that the wide ocean leading to the lost home of the giants.

    Travelling land, river, sea and sky are the viajetes, wandering people with a great love of life but little trusted by settled folk.

    Peledar reveres The Light, a beacon of hope and goodness in a harsh world, a symbol of all that is good and pure. The Sulimen also hold the Light to be sacred, although they follow a slightly different dogma written down by their Prophet (May His Name Be Blessed). The viajetes also worship the Light, but they also pay homage to their old Aegyptian gods, notably Osiris. The Kozakhs are said to worship demons, although they have a rough and ready religion remniscent of the Norse gods.

    Character Creation

    - Use Arcana Evolved for races (but see below) and classes.
    - Starting level 5th.
    - 28 point buy (+1 for 4th level)
    - Starting money 4000gp (unless you take the Wealth trait)
    - I'm using racial levels, but not evolved levels.
    - feel free to invent details of character homeland etc.

    PC Races
    Humans as usual, may be Peladan, Suliman, Viajetes or Kozakh.
    Faen all types are quite common in Peladar, hailing from upper Peladar but being driven from their ancestral homes in the Hexenwald by trolls and worse.
    Giants rare, unlike the Diamond Throne setting the giants are not in charge but are still respected advisors. They built Mournharbour and Candlespire Keep.
    Litorians Come from the south, from lands west of the Caliphate although many mingle with the Sulimen and have learned their culture. Fairly common. Litorians may take the racial ability modifiers given in the book, or may choose to have no racial ability modifiers (for a wiser but less dextrous variant).
    Sibeccai came with the giants, with the same relationship as per AE. The sibeccai are far more numerous than their creators and are found in most cities.
    Verrik very rare, come from beyond Caliphate, usually traders or explorers.
    Mojh very rare.
    Dracha also very rare. There are few dragons left, and none known to live in Peladar. Some say that they are dying out.

    Elves SRD elves are known in this setting as half-elves and are part of the Faen race. They gain all elven abilities except for the weapon familiarity, and may become a spryte same as the other faen types.
    Half-Orcs SRD half-orcs are known as half-trolls. They do not have the orc blood feature (no orcs), but gain the Fast Healing talent as a bonus feat.
    Dwarves SRD dwarves were once known to live in the north-western mountains, in their fastnesses of Eisenberg and Zwergberg, but have not been seen for centuries and are thought to be extinct.

    Races not used: half-elf, gnome, Halfling.

    Talking Animals
    I am allowing ONE character to be a talking animal (only one to prevent a menagerie feel). They can choose from
    cat, dog, donkey, horse (light riding), marmot (uses same stats as badger minus rage), monkey, porpoise, raven, snake (tiny or small, either type) and wolf. Ability scores are created as any other character, with the physical ability scores modified according to race. Mental ability scores have no modifier. They have all exceptional abilities, movement modes and skill bonuses of the animal type, but do not gain bonus feats (by gaining intelligence they have lost some of their instinct). Animals with a single hit die may take class levels instead of the racial hit die. Animals with 2-3 HD may also add class levels, but their racial HD count as 1 class level for the purposes of ECL.

    Talking animals have limited ability to manipulate objects. They fall into one of three categories:
    1) Clever paws. Rodents and monkeys are able to manipulate objects normally and do not suffer any penalties to skills involving manual dexterity.
    2) Clumsy paws. Animal that have claws or paws of some kind can use them to manipulate, but suffer a -4 penalty to the checks. This goes for attacks with manufactured weapons as well as skills such as Disable Device.
    3) No paws. Animals with hooves, flippers or coils must use their mouth, or coils, for manipulation. They suffer a -6 penalty to above checks.
    All animals with legs, even monkeys, must spend a move-equivalent action to remain bipedal if they want to. However:

    Feat: Dextrous Animal reduce manipulation penalty by 4.
    Feat: Bipedal Animal may remain bipedal as a Swift action.

    I will also allow ONE character to start as an Outlander. This is a person who has somehow been transported from our world into this fantasy world. Use d20 Modern to create the character. They start with the clothes that they wear plus one or two objects that can be held in the hand technological items will still work.

    Because the setting takes some inspiration from the Brothers Grimm tales, which often feature soldiers or hunters with a special gun of some kind, I will allow firearms. Use these rules, but the cost of everything is 1/5th that presented in the PDF. Only firearms are available from the items given in the PDF, and are useable with the Weapon Proficiency: Firearms feat. Unfettered and Warmains may take this feat instead of their usual Exotic Weapon Proficiency, but otherwise it is not a starting feat for any class. Firearms and ammunition may have any magical property granted to missile weapons.

    Opening Scene
    You begin in the village of Waybeloved, near the mysterious Forest of Lights haunted by the whispering wraiths. Waybeloved is a peaceful crossroads in the Duchy of Rosen in Lower Peladar, a river crossing for traffic heading for the nearby town of Gildenspire to board an airship, or for river traffic moving up and down one of the branches of the White River.

    It is a summer evening and a wedding is in progress, perhaps even the wedding of one or two player characters. You may be guests, or you may be passing through on other business (but even strangers are invited to partake of the celebrations).
    Last edited by Dr Simon; Wednesday, 2nd June, 2010 at 10:42 AM.

  2. #2
    Been waiting on your return. Very interested as I haven't had the chance to play AE as much as I would like, and people always rave about your games

    I have a loose concept in mind: Professor Gruffle, a kindly old tutor from the University of Magic (or equivalent) in the capital city. Either a 'wise' Litorian or a Sibeccai, and would prefer to play a Magister, but if someone else is desperate to play one, then I would try Runethane or potentially even Greenbond if you think that is reasonable.

    He's in the village as an invited guest of one of the happy couple. If either of them are PCs and have any magic using ability, then they probably took one of his classes at University; if neither are PCs getting married or not magically gifted then he is merely travelling by, and taking advantage of the local hospitality.

  3. #3
    Grandfather of Assassins (Lvl 19)

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    I Defended The Walls!

    Block Shayuri

    Welcome back!

    I have a zen yen for a spryte wood witch...greenbond is also possible.

  4. #4
    Either of those sound good. A week walking in the Black Forest has set me up nicely for a Grimm-inspired game!

  5. #5
    You avoided the 'All Encompassing Grey Cloud of Doom' TM then? Find any gingerbread houses, or old warty hags while you were there?

  6. #6
    Surface travel only, so no ash cloud problems!

    No gingerbread houses and hags, but you really felt like you were about to come across one any second.

  7. #7
    Just re-reading your chargen guidelines. Struggling to lay my hands on the table for point buy costs - is it just the 'standard' 3.5 table, stats start @ 8?

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by grufflehead View Post
    Just re-reading your chargen guidelines. Struggling to lay my hands on the table for point buy costs - is it just the 'standard' 3.5 table, stats start @ 8?
    Yes, that's the one.

  9. #9
    A poor mechanical choice (given the INT penalty) but I think I'll go with Sibeccai - Professor Gruffle sounds more 'doggy' than 'catty'...

    I've been flicking through Transcendence this afternoon. If I get to play a Magister can I use some of my starting funds to have some power nodes in my staff?

    I'm also thinking about the Runic Beast feat. If no-one 'volunteers' to play a talking animal but you think having one in the party might be fun, then this might be a good way of doing it.

  10. #10
    Y'know, of all the AE/AU supplements (barring the newer Rite Publishing stuff), I think Transcendance is the only one I don't have. If you can let me know details, I can say a more firm yay or nay. Probably yes.

    (On a related note, I'd probably be okay with anything from Mystic Secrets. I also have the Spell Treasury but would prefer spell lists from the core rulebook only, except for exotics, for the moment).

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