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Tuesday, December 25, 2012

An interesting look at mixing Arduin Demons with more OSG products

An interesting look at how someone mixed Arduin Demons into their own games along with a lot of other OSG products.  It's hosted at the In The Cities blog.

I'm looking for more examples on this idea so if you know of them or have done them yourself, be sure to share.


Sunday, December 23, 2012

Inns, Arduin, and "The Pearl"



An extensive listing of the inns and road houses of Arduin were provided to us in the famous treatise Welcome to Skull Tower. Also covered, was their place in the fabric of society. While the Inns have come and gone as the years have drifted by us, the original listing has changed some (and not a few owners to say the least) the overview is still a fairly accurate one.

Inns are the center point of Arduinian life. Whether you live in a small outlying farming community near Foxton or in the largest mansion of Talismonde, Inns are where its at!!! Inns provide every form of entertainment a citizen or traveler to Arduin could want. Whether it’s a small roadside tavern with an occasional bard stopping by and a simple dart board and nightly game of swords and dragons or a large Inn in the center of Melkalund featuring nightly shows, gambling tables and dancing. It always comes down to the Inn. Need a drink—drop by the pub. Desire to gamble? Stake your fortune at spin of the dice in the backroom. Need a bit of “loving” companionship ? Drop by the next street to the left and see Bruno at the door; he can take care of that for you, for just a few SP of course.

But you know all of this!  You have ventured in and out of pubs and taverns all your life. Have you ever considered what life is like from the other side of the railing? Dealing with your nightly regulars as they cry on your counter, drowning their sorrows not only in ale, but in your bar keep’s endless supply of wit wisdom and yes, my friend, sometimes love. Have you contemplated what life is like for Efwryn the Curvaceous, the tavern wench, constantly sashaying her hips for tips while avoiding over-reaching lushes with lovin’ on their minds? How about Mousewhisker? Who is Mousewhisker you ask? Why he is the little guy who always wipes the table before you sit down and brings you your bangers and mash without a word..

On Fast Fall Hill, ‘round the Circle Way with its sodden, wilted trees and dilapidated buildings lies the ramshackle inn, Pearly Gates. It’s in the older part of Khurahaen, where the taint of the vulgar waters of the Misty Sea have worn haggard aging timber and the stone is pitted and crumbling from the pass of time. Winding up the lopsided hill, the leaning buildings sag against one another and are little broken by change: giving more meaning to the sudden appearance of the haggard but still off-white pearl like curving arch that leads to the Inn of the same name.

“Once a dive, always a dive”, they say and it ranked among the seediest of the city. It was quite a trove for the beggars and thieves that infest the roads as more than one corpse or almost corpse found out quickly how the hill got its name (usually face first down the sheer side. Splat!) Its looking up a little these days. It was during the Spice Ale Riots some six years, that the Royal troops took time out from smacking rioters to round up some of the City’s less reputable citizens and make them involuntary guests of the throne.

The interior is comfortable and aged, like a worn boot or veteran courtesan. It is thick with rafters and heavy ceiling beams, not to mention dozens of niches and nooks. Its to the “Pearl” that everyone comes here to do their dealings, you know the kind I am talking about, the ones that you really don’t want your neighbors aware of. Whether you need a little trysting, a secret meeting with a guy you shouldn’t know, or perhaps you just want to pick up a little something for missus at bargain basement prices (considering it just came out of the Twuahn the Goldsmith’s basement, it really is a bargain tonight). Or perhaps you really do just wish to tip a flagon of Rumble Tummy Ale (yeah right).

Of course, no one comes in through the front door; that’s for the young in life and tourists (also referred to as fresh meat) who don’t know any better. Anyone with the least sense of the place comes in the other ways, the most common through Prat’s Bean Emporium at the “mouth” of Circle Way or Jongle’s Rent a Wreck near the Slash. A couple of the more daring nobles have taken to running the rooftops and wandering in via Shank’s Wares on the Shingle or across the span from Vrenduor’s Hot Spot. (Better take care going that way, since the women get real peckish if you don’t give them their piece, no not a silver piece; for the other type you pay ALOT more—and don’t think about shorting them! They tossed the young and stuck up lord Zig Malr-Tyvo headfirst off the side when he jilted them.)

Malakai Peerse runs the bar and doesn’t bat an eye when his patrons wander in from seemingly everywhere; he’s used to the comings and goings after all these years. Newcomers are always a treat and he gets a smirk or two when the new ones “have a Vroat” ( isn’t that what the kids say now?) watching folks appearing and disappearing from everywhere, (“By the moons, you mean to tell me a roof’s out there!?”), all over the place, all the time and doors opening and closing almost out of thin air it seems. Mixed drinks are his specialty. Need a Spiga Slammer or perhaps, on a really bad day of three dancing dwarves and two spitting elves, you find the need for something truly potent, like a Windego Wangdango. The man is half artist and half Wizard when it comes to mixing mash, that much I will say. He talks about as fast as he mixes and is notorious for lecturing about the various potables, and the Inn. With the right amount of coin and a taste for trying his drinks, he’ll explain it all to you (yeah, but don’t drink the blue flaming one until he blows it out!).

It’s less a mystery or magik than just that the Inn is riddled with doors of all shapes and variety, leading off into one room or another. Its not the finding of a door hidden in the wall or floor that’s challenging, its the realization that there is a door within that door and another within that one, like some vast intricate puzzle that really boggles the mind. Where they go is another question, and while Malakai has maps, or so its said, he openly admits he doesn’t really know either. Then again, he doesn’t want to know, his concern is coin and where it comes from is “no business of mine”. That the whole block has doors that lead to / from his inn is a surety as well as to the sewers and deeper into the under cities. Ah my friend, don’t ask him about the undercity. If you need something, tell him with a coin in your palm, but don’t ask about his trade secrets or your life isn’t worth the silver ten ‘pence you slid him across the wooden bar.

If you need something Malakai is there for you. Need a loan? No problem, he knows where you live. Girl problems? “Fine, lets talk to Kyra Burning Eyes over at the Blue Light, she specializes in such things as make women fiery with desire”, he’ll say with a wink and palming of your sovereigns. Understand this though, before you take a gander inside that like most things in Arduin, both Malakai and the “Pearl” are as complex as a minotaur’s maze. Always claiming its about the “da coin”, Malakai helps all who ask, sometimes even helping for ‘nah cost’. Other times he’s recalcitrant when he could make a baron’s ransom, refusing to grant aid at all, though it would cost him nothing.

Many people think that Malakai works the Inn by himself. A minute of clear thought will dispel this illusion. Malakai actually has five full-time bar wenches along with a full cleaning crew and his own security staff. When asked why he allows the bar to look so dilapidated, he has been known to reply, “neighbor, remember a pearl that shines bright is coveted by all, one of dull luster fewer look at, despite the fact with, but a wipe of a rag, one would realize its true worth”. Many think he is just a small time owner of a shabby Inn. Follow him home one morning (DON”T GET CAUGHT!!!!), as he winds his way from the odorous mists of the harbor up to his mansion on Three Jewel Hill. Apparently he does “alright” by the “Pearl”.

The “Pearl” isn’t to be taken lightly. Its a nexus between the upper world of “the straights” and the dancers of the undercities. For those in the know or those who need to find it, the “Pearl” can lead to salvation or damnation. Many wish to walk its roads from the light to the dark side of the city and back. There are toughs and other strong types that rent their services out just to lead and guard the adventurous through the paths of the inn. Where those travels may lead is rarely made public. It is always an incredibly unpredictable trip, which is why people come, but be warned, you would not be the first to enter and be lost. That however, is a tale for another time.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Ynyzer’s Sign


Also called Janguir’s bite (in Falohyr, Khorsar and Bossalia) and vulgarly “big-lip, fat-eye” disease in the Undercities. It only arises mostly in those who use spoken magik (of any kind) but sometimes afflicts victims who see or gaze upon magic. Typical affliction starts with a swollen lip or lips and sometimes an or eyes (especially if they have gazed upon powerful magic [OP 15 or higher] when infected). The disease spreads through the body rapidly, peaking within 8 to 54 hours and declining thereafter over a 40 to 88 hours period. However, any exposure to magik worsens the condition and lengthens the affliction by 8 to 40 hours. The affliction is caused by small miniscule parasites (invisible to the eye) that infect creatures (living, undead, or dead) and subside off the arcane particles emitted by spoken magic [Runeweave or Runesong does not emit any particles and does not support these creatures]. Its mortality rate is a flat 5% during the first 8-hour period but rises by 5% for each additional 8 hours that passes. Exposure to sun light (natural only) reduces the mortality rate in half for that period. This disease is particularly prominent in the Undercities and the Great Wurm Road.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

FREE STUFF!

FREE STUFF!

All, until December 30, 2012 Eastern Standard time Emperors Choice will give you free with the purchase of any three items a copy of the Country map of Arduin, the country map of Chorynth (folded) and a copy of the Swords and Dragons card set.

Basically buy ANY three items get those three items listed above for free.  The free items will probably not show up in your shopping cart but Emperors Choice will still add them to you order.

Some items are limited in stock so if you do order and any items are placed on back order for manufacturing purposes you will still get the free items, your order just might take a little longer to get out to you.

Thank you all for your continued support!

Much of the base art for the Continent map is done, it still needs to be finished as far as painting and lettering.  It is at least 3 months out for the painting (best estimate) and then the lettering who knows who long...

-EC

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

New items on drivethrurpg

Just a short note today to let people know empcho has released another piece of the world book of khaas in digital format on http://www.drivethrurpg.com

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Hey Diddle Diddle

some weekend nonsense.

Hey diddle diddle,
The Deodanth in the middle,
The Centaur jumped over the Throon
The little Kobbitt laughed to see such sport,
And the Zirin ran away with the Droon.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Short Story about the Undercities

The relevant part of a conversation held in Old Batterly's Pit and Stone eatery in Concourse Square in Falondé. The primary speaker was Batcholi; he was addressing three of his nephews who where curious about his work in the undercity. We enter the conversation after they had just dined and had leaned back to enjoy a smoke and some wine.
********
"Fine wine, very fine wine indeed" Batcholi said with a contented sigh. His nephews murmured their agreement though it was obvious to him that Salek wasn't a wine lover. He was taking small sips and doing a very good job of sloshing it as he animatedly interacted with his sightly young brother Roctin. Batcholi took a draft of his cigar and puffed out a mass of smoke, sadly noting a current of air took it away before it could form into the shape he had wanted.
“Uncle”, Kaomok said.
Batcholi pulled his gaze down from the smoke.
Kaomok had a serious look on his darkly cast face. Of course, he always had a serious look. Probably because he was the oldest of the three rascals that Batcholi was sharing the table with this fine evening.
“Uncle, tell us about what you do these days.”
Batcholi regarded him for a moment and laughed quietly. “That, my young nephew is a big question. I do many things these days. Not the least of which is watch over you.”
Kaomok was still young enough to redden, especially when Roctin jabbed him with an elbow while he tried, rather unsuccessfully to cover up a laugh.
“Uncle, what he means to ask is what you do in the undercity”, Salek said.
Batcholi winked at him and set down his cigar. He took a drink of his wine, taking his time as he eyed the three.
“I, of course, run a healthy business. One of imports and exports, like the rest of our family, as you rakes know quite well.”
The three of them looked at one another and it was Kaomok that piped up. “We know that, uncle. What we were curious about was the undercity.”
Batcholi eyed them and then laughed. “Its fine. I have found that most people have a poor sense of what the undercity is like. What do you want to know?”
They leaned eagerly forward, sharing a glance among each other.
“What it like down there?”, Kaomok asked, right as Salek said at nearly the same time, “Is it dark all the time and smell like a sewer?”
Batcholi grunted. “Let's see. Well, its like being in the city except its below it. Also, like the city above it has its areas that are both very good and very bad.”
That was obviously not what they wanted, which didn't surprise him.
Roctin sniffed. “Not quite what I hoped, uncle. I mean, we have heard all kinds of things about the undercity”, he said looking at the other two for support. “I mean, we've heard that they have black masses that eat people, temples to the dark gods; people that sell slaves, black marketeers with auctions of illegal goods, and impromptu parties.”
“Someone has been listening to all kinds of tales.” Batcholi remarked. “Well, let's put some truth to those tales. Its looks like its time to attend to your education. I told you that the undercity is like the city above and just like the city it has its characters.
“The family business lies in a part of the undercity under the control of the March Warden of the Deep Spike. Like his title suggests, that part of the undercity is called Deep Spike, much like our own sector of Falondé is called Djaksim after the exotic Djaksim Tower. It, however, is not as spectacular as the Djaksim tower, though it has a certain mystique of its own.
“The area, in fact takes after the name, since it was once a part of the sewers you mentioned earlier though its been long bereft of scent. It's full of vaults and once was the primary pumping station. The rework of the sewers and capture tanks to handle overflow from the river led to a dry area with numerous vaults connected by a ton of corridors. A very perfect place to do business, since it makes for a good area to put established stores.”
“Uncle”, Salek interrupted, “that doesn't sound very different than the city.”
“Indeed. In fact, if it were not for the gloom that fills the place and the somewhat stifling atmosphere, it could indeed be like the city. People come and go, dropping in from the city and going up from the undercity. Business occurs as does other things you would see in the city. Its just a bit wilder and a trifle more dangerous down below. At least in the Deep Spike.”
“Why isn't it dark?” Kaomok asked.
“Well”, Batcholi said taking a drag on his cigar before responding. “The Deep Spike area retained the large metal grates that once allowed water in. Now, they let in the light that filters down that is captured by the mirrored repeaters that spreads it around.”
“Is the rest of the undercity that way too?” Kaomok asked.
Batcholi shook his head. “No, its generally darker if not outright pitch black.”
“Tell us about the black marketeers!” Salek requested.
Batcholi coughed into his hand before starting. “Well, let's just say that the undercity is where people go to buy things they can't get in the light of day. Things they shouldn't or things that are illegal.”
“Have you ever been to one?” Roctin asked.
He coughed again into his hand. “Well, let's just say that from time to time some of our family business flows that way. Not all of it; its mainly aboveboard but a few things the family acquires can't be sold out of our stores.”
“Who cares” Salek said. “What about the craziness that we here about down there? Man eating bacteria, Wards of the Chained One, Limb Thieves, undead – its seems like everything ugly you can imagine exists done there!”
“I see something has your imagination fired up. Well, I won't lie to you and say such things don't exist down there. The March Wardens' areas, especially those of Deep Spike, Rainbow Falls and Long Spin are relatively safe areas. The undercity lords in those areas maintain a presence, one strong enough to deter the majority of really dangerous things that live down below. The other places are much less safe to utter dangerous.”
“Like the Red Coated Baron's area!” Roctin interjected.
“Like the Red Coated Baron's area” Batcholi agreed. “His lands, if you will, are adjacent to the Deep Spike and so are not horribly unsafe. At least, in those areas distant from the Azren Maze and near the March Warden's borders. Closer to the maze and its anything goes.”
“Anything goes – what does that mean?” Kaomok asked?
Botcholi drew on his cigar once last time and rubbed it out on a metal plate sat on the table just for that purpose. “Let's say that those man-eating bacteria you spoke about could easily make an appearance. Their nest is supposedly somewhere in the maze so they are predominate there and in the areas that touch on the maze. Outside of the areas defined by the March Wardens, the walkways and passages are very unsafe, unlike our streets and roads above. No one patrols or maintains those walkways in general, especially those beyond the reach of the wardens. Only the hubs that house people are considered safe and in those, safety is secured by the quickness of your sword.”
“People live down there?” Salek asked fascinated.
“Of course they do” Roctin said, elbowing Salek. “They don't all go up to the city, do they uncle?”
Botcholi nodded and signaled for more wine. “Indeed. Some people never go above. They are born, live and die in the undercity.”
“Really?” Kaomok asked.
Uncle nodded in answer. “Yes. Its a motley group, even more so than the mix you would find on our streets. We keep certain levels of decency in force above. Down below, outside of certain areas, those rules are gone. Most, however, are decent sorts trying to make their way through life. Others are outlaws, lawbreakers, wanted by the law or their orders for wrong doing. Joining them are creatures that otherwise could not walk easily in the light of day.”
“What do these people do?” Kaomok asked.
Botcholi quaffed a drink from his newly filled wine glass before answering. “I'll assume that you mean those of the darker nature than the otherwise mundane. Still the mundane are important. Let us say that most live like we do above, excepting that their lives are much more dangerous. Where we have the certainty of law and a basic sense of order that flows from it, they do not. Instead, they huddle in groups, like you would in the wild for protection or seek out hiding holes and places of refuge. Of course, they are not alone. The undercity, for all its danger and lack of law, sees a large influx of visitors. Those seeking out those illegal markets are underground auctions. Those looking for a service they could not get above or fear to partake above in order to avoid prying eyes. Or, just making their way to a party, a theater, a meeting, or some other assemblage. Some even come for the adventure or to find something lost in the dark.
“Now those with a darker desire prey on those that live there or who come there. In fact, a favorite pastime with lightsiders is to dunk them. Never heard of it, have you? No, don't bother answering, I know you haven't. Its when they prey on them, give them a good beating or kill them. Then they toss the body into the pools of water that seem to be everywhere or into the working sewer system. Its a horrible business but doesn't seem to deter adventure seekers and those that should know better from coming down.”
He paused and the nephews looked queasily at each other. Botcholi shook his head and waggled a finger at them. “Now, don't look weird, its not all that bad or we wouldn't do business down there. At least in some areas. Most of the undercity is well deserved for its reputation and is filled with dark, beastly people and equally decadent places. People live down there and act out their lives just like we do. They live in some place relatively safe and traverse the winding pipes, tunnels and vaults that connect the majority of the place together.”
Roctin poked at the table and asked, eyes downcast, “I've heard that it has levels, kind of like the city has the upper terrace and the lower grounds.”
Botcholi swirled his wine, studying it. “True. Though not so cleanly as the jewel of our city. It has deeps like an ocean, where the deeper you go the more dangerous and dark it becomes. What we know mostly as the undercity is but the upper skin of the below ground.”
They loosed uneasily at each other and Botcholi put his wine glass down with a thunk. “Let's call this to a close, young sirs. But I'll end it with a warning. You may have friends who will invite you below. I encourage you to take the loss of face and decline. Too often, those virgins who go below do not return the same. I encourage you to seek safer pastimes, like bearding a dragon in its lair or pissing on the king's statue in Crownmark Square in broad daylight.”
He got to his feet and the nephews did the same. “Now, shall we see what delights the Jewel of Khaas holds for us this evening?”
They nodded and he gestured for them to go first, following right behind.


Sargo'oth's Nail

Some history and a bit of magic from the annals of Arduin.

A purplish Trapezohedron looted from an abandoned ship found floating in the Orchalcum Ocean without a crew. While the ship showed signs of battle and was gutted by flame in the hold, it was still seaworthy. The Chorynthian merchanteer that came across it sank the ship afterward, following an aborted attempt to tow it back to a port and an encounter with pirates. Supposedly the gem took the name Sargo'oth from the bastardization of words written on parchment that was that was wrapped around the gem was found. The Chorynthian captain dubbed it Sargo'oth's Nail when he used it as an impromptu dagger during the later struggle with pirates. Reputedly, it could pierce any material from fine Bossalian Steel to paper with ease and suck the magic out of anything it touched.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Veteran's Day!

Happy Veteran's Day everyone.

Take a second and thank a veteran.  Its their service that keeps us safe. 

For those who don't agree with the military, its their service and dedication that allow you to be as vocal as you want in your disagreement.  Or, to be spit at, like I was today.

--Monty

Saturday, November 3, 2012

An except from Lightning's Scion, an upcoming Arduin novel

The following is an except from the upcoming Arduin novel, where Tai Kyrie, the main character is speaking about the Citadel of Thunder that lies on the Misty Sea behind the Thousand Thunder Falls.

Enjoy.

"They had rested the night or at least part of it. Tai Kyrie had used a portion of the night examining the area. He was well acquainted with the area, having spent almost a year's worth of time spread out over five years hanging out here. Once on his own and the others on behalf of the crown or college for one reason or another. Tai Kyrie had played a hand in sealing the citadel behind the falls the last time it had been closed. It had been a mammoth task and one that had tested his skills greatly. Finding the knot of power they had created from the ley lines and ways of power etched around the falls and into the citadel still intact had made him breath a sigh of relief.
It was always a risk to leave such an area untouched and unguarded, which is why the crown had sent them in the first place. Places of great power like this were lodestones for creatures and people hellbent on turning that energy to their own use, something history had demonstrated quite well. The citadel had come into being during the Nexus Wars as a location of guerrilla resistance against invaders. The area was naturally powerful, a convergence of ley lines that formed a node of great energy. It also had a very large indigenous population of grey goblins, who were rather less than keen on allowing people on their lands. Considering that they lived in harmony with air sharks and were thick with ancestral spirits that were very active due to the power node around the falls, they were very effective to fending off claimants to their land.
Keeping that in mind makes one wonder how the elves fighting against the invaders to their country managed to build the citadel in the first place. Not that it was truly a citadel – it was more a fortified portion of the tunnels behind the falls than anything else.
As a place to fight from and camp to train and live, it served well. Many invaders never realized its location and even those who did most often failed in trying to take it. It was hard to besiege due to its location and harder to do without involving the grey goblin populace and their legion of ghosts and airsharks. Not that it had not fallen. No, indeed, it had fallen from within and without several times during the thousands of years that spanned the Nexus Wars. In fact, for hundreds of years towards the end of the Nexus Wars, it had been a temple to Aaos instead of a military camp. This had been when its infamous pumps had been created: those marvels of magic and technology that moved water and energy, shoring up massive reservoirs of power that could be used. Used for rituals and spells, which the priests of Aaos did to great effect, summoning horrible beings of shadow and entropy. Only the greatest courage and sacrifice led to their fall and when the priesthood was exterminated the citadel was sealed off. It was called the first sealing and was but one of many to come.
Its power made it too attractive to ignore, a fact called to the attention of the new Arduin government that arose from the ashes of the old at the end of the Nexus Wars. It wasn't the only place of its nature, given the volatility of the land and what it had suffered. It just got attention more often due to its proximity to the Misty Sea, the crown road, and the cities. When Tai Kyrie had come to it to help form its latest seal, his was the twelfth time it had been locked away. The previous seals had either been broken or faded over time, allowing for intrusion and the eventual waking of the pumps. They were just too tempting not to use. Even the crown had thought so, posting a contingent of men, military and collegiate to investigate and use them. It was then that its corrupting influence was discovered and documented as well as it was known. Aaos, Vorcus before him, Shagrath and more had turned the power in the area and it could not be used without suffering corruption and taint that eventually led to madness and death. Everyone seemed to think they had a way to get around the corruption and each failed in turn, descending into madness and death. Usually not before becoming or releasing something dark and dangerous into the world.
The collegiate continent with the crown troops had documented it well, including their own mad descent. It had led to the edicts banning all traffic to or around the falls and the caves behind on pain of death. The edict had lasted for cycles though it had been tough to implement. The sealing previous to his had used a cornerstone of runes and faerie magic. It had proved quiet sturdy and in time the edicts had been lifted by the King Elric. It had finally been broken, as all things are in time. By the time Tai Kyrie had come, the crown had rousted out several nests of would-be conquers of the area. The grey goblins, abiding by the old agreements had come to assist. It had made for a tense arrangement when he had arrived. Things had thawed over time, as fighting against a common foe always did. Their common foe being the unchecked power of the area. The proposal of the latest seal had been to their advantage and the grey goblins had unconditionally supported it. The representative of the king had been unhappy, of course. He had not wanted to empower the grey goblins any more than they were. The proposal of the seal, however, was partially dependent on their ancestral spirits becoming a portion of the sealing process. They had agreed, since doing so made their grip on the area even stronger."
 

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Items on DriveThruRPG

I thought I would share the cover we developed for the character sheet that was distributed through DrivethruRPG. You can see this one and others via this link:  http://www.rpg.drivethrustuff.com/index.php?keywords=Arduin+Eternal&x=0&y=0&author=&artist=&pfrom=&pto=

Anyway, enjoy!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Don't swell up like a panta

An Arduinian idiom, using often to indicate someone has an exaggerated sense of self importance or is conceited. 

Panta are a kind of lizard seen in the Mickleback Mountains of west Arduin.  Their primary defense is to swell, similar to a porcupine. This rotates their iron like quills outward and makes them nearly double in size, presenting a formidable defense towards predators.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

New Releases

EC STORE: New items added

The following new items were added to the Emperors Choice store:

1. Map of Chorynth - folded, 17x22 inches
2. Map of Chorynth - rolled and shipped in its own tube like the Arduin map
3. Bloodbeast miniature
4. Air Shark 2 - a larger version of the original air shark, this one does not have a rider
5. Air Shark 2 - a larger version of the original air shark, this one has an archer on its back
6. Air Shark 2 - a larger version of the original air shark, this one has the rider with sword

The Air Shark 2 is just a larger version of the original Airshark and has a more pointed snout, some saddlery additions and is a little bit stockier.

7. Air Shark - Hammerhead - no rider
8. Air Shark - Hammerhead with archer rider
9. Air Shark - Hammerhead with rider that has sword and shield
10. Giant Vampire bat with rider that has sword and shield
11. Giant Vampire bat with Melkalund city rider that is shooting a bow at its target
12. Giant Vampire bat with Melkalund city rider that has armor from head to waist, sword and shield
13. Giant Vampire bat with rider that has axe and shield
14. Mushrooms, large Mushrooms (2 pieces) for encounters from foliage to actual attack musrooms - whatever you might need them for!
15. Gworm miniature
16. painted photo of the new Throon Tolparg



















Engineering and the Techno

I've spent quite some time working on the Techno recently.  I've liked what I found but can see some areas of improvement.  Especially in the manufacturing and design section.  My plan is to outline some updates in a series of articles. 

Nothing will change dramatically but you should see more tools and easier organization to the production of items.

Not to mention a mess of new designs!

Monty

Monday, September 3, 2012

Halberd of Kailton

Another of the tidbits of Arduinian history.  The Halberd of Kailton, which is not, as one would think an artifact or weapon of power.  Yet, sort of was, at the same time.  It was a signature spell of one Guillame of Kailton.  His tale says that, unable to become a warrior like the others of his generation, he delved instead into magic.  Like them, though, he used the traditional blade of the town, a hiltless arc of steel.  His typical spell send dozens of them spiraling into the air above his enemies, to draw down at his whim.  So prevalent was his attack it became a part of his reputation and enemies far and wide would crane their necks to the sky above to make sure none of the Kailton Halberds were spinning in the air, waiting to drop on them when they least suspected.

As a firmly grounded piece of legend, its used frequently to represent the danger or the threat of danger.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Poioson Tal Banquet

Ah, I love talking about the history of Arduin and its lands.  This juicy tidbit is an Arduinian reference of some antiquity, hearkening back to the time when the white cities of the second continent shone in the rays of sun and the breaker frothed white from the waves of the green sea.  The Poioson Tal (puh-sun tal) Banquet.  A very famous dinner, one given by a Duke of the Shimmering Wall to his guests.  The meal was articulated in vast detail by the poem (of the same name) that outlined the dining done that night.  The feast was in nine courses and in each course, a hazard, a danger was given with the plates.  As the feast progressed, the number of diners decreased as they succumbed to the hazards present at the meal.  In the end, only the wily remained to confront the last course - one that proved their death.

Its used often as a parable of the dangers of life, the ones we confront as we live it.  In the end, we all have a final course that ends in death.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Long Goodbye

One of the more interesting places in the Talismonde undercity.

A long, twining chute (of varying size) that descends through the North West side of the city and into a fathomless spinning whirlpool called, “The Growl”. Zethimul Enforcers of the Black Temple love to toss intruders into this chute. Once in the chute, the only chance of getting out of its grip is at a long stretch called “The File”. Here a series of broken and jagged casements snap like the jaws of great beasts, however many of them open into placid side passages that lead back upwards the black heaven of the upper undercity.

Friday, August 31, 2012

Star Dragon’s Lair

One of the more interesting constellations in the Arduinian sky.
Star Dragon’s Lair, is a tangle of stars, very thickly clustered, with wavy, spiral look when viewed on clear evenings. It has over a dozen, very bright stars scattered in its mass, arranged away from each other at the ends of twisting trails of massed faintly gleaming stars. They are typically referred to as the Dragon Eyes, and hold an area of prime importance with the religion of the Star Dragons, though what exacts that might be is steeped in mystery. The identical constellation, adjunct with a few radiating nearby stars, also is of great import to the followers of Vanaan, who revere its wavy, twisting constellations as a semblance of the eternal flame.

Thursday, August 30, 2012

A bit of information about Talismondé's Sewer System

Talismondé has a main drain called the Gorgon’s Throat that is 12 ft by 18 ft and is made from hewn stone. It starts well past the southern gate of the city and into the fields (under the main road) and extends north until it dumps into the Misty Sea. The conduct’s main purpose is to control city drainage, storm runoff and sewage. Drainage systems are located in the streets (masonry: rectangular x-sections). At the ends of the drain are woven metal “bar screens’. Liquids enter into brick lined cesspools and then descending through a series of soak-pits to the Gorgon’s Throat. Most drops are “free fall” masonry shafts into soak-pits or cesspools. Flush tanks are strategically set at points so to capture and then use the addition of sewage, rain water or other fluids to build velocity for the whole system. Others are closed top cement channels to move storm water, sewage and other wastes. Wet detention ponds collect rain water and overflow from levees and catch basins near the Misty Sea and are used to gravity power the (sump) pumps that run many fountains not to mention the vertical screw pumps that run the main system below ground. The tide changes of the Misty Sea are used to flush the main sewer lines.

During the resettlement after the Nexus Wars, the governor raised the level of the entire area by 20 to 30 feet so provide for the gravity fed pumps. Since much of what is Talismondé was built on old ruins, this was easily done but done by collapsing and building upon the older structures. This created a maze of vertical and horizontal pipes that amply take care of city’s requirements. It also caused some problems unforeseen when it was initiated. Shortly after its creation, several areas dropped in height causing multiple blockages in the system. Re-routing and designing the system fixed most of these problems as did the engineering of better placed sump pumps, access points and outlets to release gas, solid blockages and excess fluid.

Oval or egg shaped sewers predominate below with underground weirs and dams that hold, collect and filter waste water. Some areas (usually with underground waterfalls) have Weeping Tiles/Pipes above that help build the velocity of the system. Manholes are placed at periodic intervals to allow for ventilation and access. Most descent into manholes is made by a ladder or rope; however, some have steps built into the manhole structure, sometimes via protruding bricks or stones, or wrought iron/cast-iron steps.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Hand of Ogual Ritual

HAND OF OGUAL– OP 2
Preq: APT 22, MA 18, Trd Arcanalogy
Mana: 3 C: 100 F: 15
Range: 30 M: see below Area: see below
TD: 25 Note1 Duration: see below

This useful spell takes a caster- specified portion of the contents of a container, which must in hand, on the body of, or at the feet of (within 1 ft) the caster, and paints, daubs, or coats it over the surface of a single target within 30 ft. How the material covers, how thickly, etc is up to the caster, as well as any designs or the overall artistry if they have skill in that area. So you could smear a few pounds of gunpowder on a rock, spread oil of immolation on a foe, or daub acid on a tapestry, or whatever. The spell daubs/paints at your speed and skill, so how long it takes to finish depends on you as does the area covered (which depends on the material you are using).

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Mist Burn, the night of flame and infamy

They say the nights are lively in Arduin but some nights are more so than most.  In this case, lively in the sense of death, carnage and flames, which for some, is the norm for their stay in Arduin.  

Mist Burn, as it would come to be called, was a stretch of three nights of infamy that started when someone mis-delivered a crate of Fire-In-A-Bottle.  Now, everyone knows the stuff is volatile, even the alchemists that make it.  Most typically treat it with caution.  The cautious strap it in and pack it in crates to prevent explosions.   The more foolish throw it in the back on a couple of furs.  That do little to prevent the bottle from being dropped off a wagon after a flyby by Vord sent the horses jumping everywhere.

The looks of surprise and then fear on the faces of travelers was only matched by the greater fear on the faces of those who watched the flames eat away the wagon and then the large trees of the wood that the wagon crashed into.

The resultant explosion burned the north of Treehaven for three days, creating a toxic smoke that burned away the mist that floated over the city.   It took summoning a mist elemental out of the forest to quench the flames.

Chorynth map

Map of Chorynth:

As of 28 August 2012, the map of Chorynth is completed and in our hands from the printer.  It was a test of sort to see about combining the efforts of two artists, us at the company and a new printer.  We are rather pleased with the results and hope you are as well.

Release time is expected before but expected no later than the end of the first week in September.  The delay - well we have to get the item into the store, let stores know about it etc.  When we add this item to the inventory we also hope to add a bunch of the new miniatures that have been waiting for months to get added to the site as well.

We hope you all enjoy the map, dont forget that there is a FREE download of the basics of Chorynth available at drivetherpg, link is below.


Chorynth while part of the master map of the Continental area of Khaas in the Arduin setting is very modular, it is an island off of the southeastern coast of the main continent.  Is is ready to be plugged into ANY game system and useable with any campaign or expedition as you see fit.

Thank you and enjoy!

-EC





Mind Stinger

A treasure from the trove to enjoy.
Mind Stinger – looks like a braided coil of plastic filled with icy blue liquid. Rolls into a 9 inch ball when not in use. The flattened end of the coil fits over one finger while the rest wraps the wrist and forearm. To use the Mind Stinger, you point to a target within 30 ft and power it with 3 PSI. The item pulses a psychic attack at the target, seeking to overwhelm its nervous system and paralyze. The attack is at d100+55 and if succeeds, paralyzes any living creature of 50 BODY or less for d4 melee rounds.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Notes on Knockdowns

Some basic thoughts on Knockdowns.  I recently waded through some confusion in a game with some players and wanted to ensure the same clarifications were spread widely.

First, Knockdowns require a roll against the target's DEF and then a comparison of BODY to see if you knocked them down.  I've generalized it to a roll against their DEF, since you can perform Knockdowns with Athletics, Style, Weapon and half a dozen other skills.  The BODY comparison, however, is an often missed step.  You have to have more BODY than your opponent or you can't knock them down.  Obviously skill, secrets, having four legs, and other things can modify this value (not to mention add realism).   Still, you have to have a greater value.  Equal means it doesn't work.  Smaller means it definitely doesn't work.  If you do succeed, they get knocked prone in the space they are standing, lose -5 CF, and take your BODY damage.

Second, if you fail you don't take any damage normally unless they have some ability, skill, secret, etc. that provides for this ability.  Nor do foes automatically get a show back at you.  Wrong game.

Third, the CF penalty is immediate and repeatable.  If you knock someone down more than once in a melee round, they keep on taking the CF penalty.  So, yes, its an very good tactic to knock someone down and keep knocking them down to keep them from ever going.  Especially if you stagger it among two or three people versus one foe.

Fourth, you can't knock someone down that's prone or already knocked down.  They have to be up, active and moving under their own power.  Manhandling someone until that point is just that.  Manhandling.

Fifth, if you employ a weapon or tool to make the knockdown,  the weapon must be able to handle the total BODY of your foe.  Otherwise it breaks or gets damaged in the knockdown attempt and you fail.

Six, even if you have a favored position of Prone, you still take the Knockdown damage and penalties.  You just don't suffer the problems associated with being prone.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Setting a Weapon against a Charge

A question came up about setting a weapon against a charge.  Its in the AE book but not as consolidated or clear as desired.  If you go to the last page in the Battle and Melee section you'll see an entry for set against a charge.  It states,

"A weapon must be capable o being set against a Charge action, such as a halberd, spear or similar weapon.  If you set a weapon against a Charge action, you get to make an attack against the Charging opponent when they first enter your ER with a +10 CRIT chance."

So, by default, a polearm or weapon capable of being set against a Charge is NOT readied.  It requires an action, a quickened action at that, to ready a weapon against a Charge action.  You can expend that quickened action AT ANY TIME, so you could indeed wait to ready it right as your opponent charges.  That's a very valid action to take.  If you have a quickened action.  If you have already used it then you are out of luck.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Notes on Charging in AE

After watching a game recently and see people playing Arduin Eternal fall back on altogether the wrong rules from another game when they were using the Charge maneuver outlined in the Battle and Melee section, I felt some points needed addressing.

First, the only requirement of distance to travel is your SIZE in feet to build up enough momentum.  No where does it say you have to travel in a straight line, without deviation or change, in order to charge.  So, if you drop back 5 ft to get some distance and then drive straight at someone (Charge), its a perfectly acceptable use of Charge (just cross the appropriate distance).  Same applies for going around something or someone, zigzagging, and so on.  As long as you travel the distance, it doesn't matter much how you did it; excepting that if you don't employ a straight line you do have to cover twice the distance to build up enough steam.

Second, the benefit to Charge is your add one-half your MASS to damage.  It doesn't mean you inflict double damage or double dice or anything like it. You do incorporate MASS from other things into this calculation, such as the benefit provided by armor (see the Enc value on armor).  Weight you are carrying doesn't count unless its rigged or adjusted to work with your body (e.g, armor).  A sack over your shoulder doesn't fit under this ruling though a GM might rule a good backpack would and provide an Enc value.

Third, the penalty to Charge is the -30 penalty to all MANEUVER skills.  That's everything from Acrobatics to Style and includes Parrying (a use of Guard), for example as well as Weapon and Style attacks.  So, brash and reckless charges inflict greater damage but also suffer a penalty to hit.

Fourth, a Bestial Charge is a Charge action.  Just because the Savage profession adds some additional bonuses to it doesn't make it not a Charge action.  Same for the Gladiator version or for the Aerial or Jumping versions unless they specify otherwise. 

Fifth, a Charge action is more than building up power and hitting someone.  You can also use it to Dash or double full move on your CF Action Count.  You can also Overrun someone as well.  With an Overrun your focus is not on hitting them for damage but walking over them on the way to something else, though you can surely make it your focus if desired.  To blow over someone, make an Athletics roll versus their DEF, compare your BODY to theirs: if you are higher, you succeed and trample them, inflicting your BODY damage and Charge damage as well as knocking them down while you continue merrily on.  You could also Press and pretty much do the same thing as outlined in Overrun, just to push them in a direction you desire.




Friday, August 24, 2012

A bit of Arduin from the World Book


Dark Wood [Arduin Map Location: C7] - Few can note the transition from the Bone Wood to the Dark Wood. Ask those who live there, however, and they can tell definitively where that boundary lies. A sense of danger lingers in the background, becoming a living, hungering menace that permeates every shadow of the wood. The change is tangible and hangs like a heavy mist that sinks into the bones, weakening the body with fear. Locals know the boundaries well. Just as they learn to understand the uneasiness of the land and the things that dream restlessly in the nurturing darkness of the forest. To not learn means to end up devoured by what lurks there; hidden out of sight and on the edge of mind. Only from the air would a stranger know the transition from wood to wood, as the odd clinging vines that weave through the tall trees of the forest are easily visible and populate both. Violet and deep red in hue, these parasites have much to do with the strangling of light to the lower reaches.

The Dark Wood is only 18 miles by 13 miles but throngs with tall and mighty trees, dark foliage and heavy mud that cling heavy and sodden to the foot. The canopy is multi layered and dense, choking light at every opportunity but the forest is still thick with shadow bough, fey fingers, horse birch, hawthorn and holly. Scattered among the bracken filled glades of the forest are thousands of ancient oaks. In the sun-choked recesses, wildlife flourishes on an exceptional bounty of rotten wood, hollowed trunks and decay of the forest. Ground hugging fog lurks constantly in the wood and animals, beasts and creatures of all types abound along side rich communities of fungi, beetles, bugs, insects and arachnids of all types.

Within the boundaries of the forest, civilization still survives, even with the darkly spiritual menace of this brooding wood. Two villages survive, one on the edge of the Darkwater (whose wet expanse is forever shadowed by the steep heights of Boring Mountain) and the other not far from Tall Fang Mountain.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Dourlokhe's Vault


Dourlokhe was banished from the College of Magik in Vaalguard for the dangerous arcane experiments he performed. His last and most known experiment ended with several city blocks being consumed by an watery nexus. Fleeing from justice for his actions, Dourlokhe fled to the mountains, using his magik to tunnel a great complex in the mountain rock.  

Justice had not forgotten Dourlokhe though it was many years before it caught up to him. Nearly a dozen years after his flight from Vaalguard a company of soldiers entered into Dourlokhe's Vault to bring him to justice. Within they found chaos and death. Horrible mutations and abominations lay inside, twisted things once human but not joined with crystal, steel and the flesh of beasts.

The soldiers fought their way free, losing half their number in the process. The tales told by the returning soldiers brought a steady stream of adventurers and the curious, who in turn fed the tales even more with the strange creatures and valuables they brought back from the vault.

This despoiled wonder can be found high in the slopes of the Pyonder Mountains in Viruelandia. Its entrance is blocked from normal sight unless you are right on top of the graven stones that mark the way in. Locals say the slopes glow with prismatic hues in the chill air of winter and lines of purple and green mark the way to get within the vault. 

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Solar Waterswept


A Wood Elf martial artist of some reputation. He dwells in the Elfholgen lands south and west of the Copper Arm Mountains in Aradnast. The Waterswept family is one of the Elven Noble families that separated away from Atenveldt and joined Aradnast. Solar grew up fighting in the mountains against soldiers and is considered one of their bogeymen, able to get entire armies to quit the field if he is present. The Atenveldt call him the Death Oiliphant. He is also known as Throon Brother.  Solar is youthful and vibrant with energy but with a weathered hard air to him and deep eyes that seem to absorb light. He is built strongly for an elf with over developed arms and shoulders that would make a Throon proud.  While known to use weapons occasionally, Solar is accounted to use Syllindion as his primary art. He also is reputed to be almost as proficient in Mul-LLu and Thrugga-Aspa. Solar spent three years in the mountains fighting side by side with Kutos and is thought to have learned some of his Nine Laughing Gods Fist style as well.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Valley of Corrupted Magik


This vale in Viruelandia lies high in the Silver Boar Mountains near the source of the Skuix River. Few travel to this odd place, as magik twists and contorts, taking on visible patterns in the air, dancing and gyrating to the same music that compels great chunks of earth to equally hang and move effortlessly in the air. Even water is not immune to this effect and streams splash and move without support, winding and twining around unseen obstacles in the sky. Nexus activity is also present here, fast decaying gates are the norm, and at times, the whole vale lights up in fast moving nexus storms. 

Monday, August 20, 2012

Sofineln Moonwalker


Pretty famous as a Saint of the White Moon Goddess. Sofineln is said to have single-handedly cleansed the Ghost Barrens area of the Brass Mountains, trod across the slavering heads of uncountable demons to rescue Lady Boleyn, burning them with the moonlight emitted from the soles of his feet; dueled the Sanduruine Enigma with wits, power and endurance, securing its will to his own to turn the tides of the Battle of the Sardonyx Trees. These and hundreds more tales are attributed to his famous saint of the White Lady.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Arduin Eternal Easy Character Sheet

A while back, one of my stalwart crew put together  a very handy google documents worksheet to ease the burden of character generation.  Its link can be found here:  https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/ccc?key=0AjZuIKAPUnhWdHhIaXBKTzIwQ0tQX0dNcXk2RVVZeGc#gid=5.

It lists directions and samples on how to enter data and very much makes the process easier.  Enjoy!

Misty Isles and the World Eater


During the Misty Mountain Wars, a poor priestess of Hekate bargained for more than she could ever manage and loosed something terrible beyond imagining, foul beyond sight to view, and more horrible than darkness could conceal. Its appetite devoured three fleets and thousands of Amazons before it was driven forth into the dark waters of the Cerulean Sea. The horrible view of its loathsome dark eyes earned it the appellation of the Black Eyed Death.  Unslain, despite all their attempts, it roams the world still, devouring anything it crosses with an appetite unquenched until death or the last bite which consumes all there is in this world. 

Friday, August 17, 2012


MAPS:

Specifically this post is in reference to the following:

1. World book of Khaas map scales, what they might be, why they are not what you might think they should be.

2. The forth coming Continent map and the scale, this is essentially the same map as the one in the World book of Khaas.

3. A scale note for the map of Chorynth - due back from the printer presumably next week (week of August 20-24 or so we hope!).   


ORIGINAL MAP the main continent is drawn from:
1 inch = 64 miles
It was a Hargrave original approximately 44x33 inches; It comes form the Arduin III campaign map and was originally saved/salvaged by Paul Mosher! thanks Paul!

The original map that the map was basically copied from is 44 inches x 33 inches (roughly) with 1 inch being equal to 64 miles (sorry I don’t Kilometers at the moment).

This would equate out to 2816 miles x 2112 miles – roughly.

The scales were purposely left off the maps in the world book for a few reasons the primary one being the scales would be so different on each map that it might not make sense and would have the delayed the book much longer as we would have had to get all of that in there.  Believe me it was discussed and crushed me not to put it in there.

The new continent map which is currently being painted by William Watt (he also painted the map of Chorynth) and is probably many many months out for production, is slated to have a scale on it as are most of the newer poster maps that we will be working on.  The main continent map will have the major 70 plus Heraldry symbols in color on the map as well as other art.  It should come out quite nice!

The Map of Chorynth has a scale on it of roughly one inch to 16 miles.  It is on a 17x22 poster map and is expected to be released in about two weeks assuming the printer does it correctly.

The Arduin map (currently in production) which is extremely detailed (more than any other map I know of) is roughly 22x34 inches.  The scale on the Arduin poster map is 1 inch to 10 miles, so Arduin in this version is about 200 miles x 300 miles (very roughly) (note other versions from different and older Arduin campaigns may actually be significantly different).  This Arduin poster map is actually printed on a “parchment” “vegetable like” paper that gives an older world feel, quite nice actually.  It was an experiment that actually worked.  Again another work saved / salvaged by Paul Mosher.  Thank Paul again!  This map is a near duplicate of the original Hargrave did with some minor tweaks and some relabeled areas due to readability purposes.  The original was on coped papers of a map done in marker and colored pencils plus photo references.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Country of Chorynth digital download

Emperors Choice is proud to announce that the Country of Chorynth is free for download in a digital format from drivethruRPG.  You can find the link here:  http://rpg.drivethrustuff.com/product/104840/Country-of-Chorynth.  The download consists of the material found in the World Book of Khaas, Legendary Lands of Arduin plus an additional 10 pages of material, including two pages of Arduin Eternal information.

We will be presenting the rest of the countries in the World Book, with their expansions over the rest of the year and into the next.

Impromptu Parry with a missile weapon

In some situations you may need to parry and all you have in hand is a missile weapon.  You obviously don't get the bonus of the weapon or your weapon skills to parry but you can still do it.  So, in those cases if you choose to use a quickened action to parry, you use your Guard skill but suffer a -25 penalty to the roll.

More Arduin sayings

"Never poke a thorg; you're likely to get mauled", is one of those pieces of wisdom parents are wont to throw out.  Thorg are tiger-like creatures, excepting they are half again as long and possessed of eight limbs versus four.  They also have a nasty disposition.

"A black blade in the queen's court" is a swords and dragons reference to a very powerful but pretty rare hand.  Good to have; very advantageous but hard to setup.  Its used the same way in speech.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Building NPC Backgrounds Part I

The tables are primarily designed for non-player characters but, if you want to use them to develop your player character, feel free. The following sections provide a number of tables to roll on though you are not required to use them all. You can follow them or pick an entry – if your GM doesn't mind, of course. Please note that ordinarily only one roll is made on each though the directions may dictate otherwise; follow them where indicated.

Physical Appearance
Everything starts here.  Use the below tables to find out what you look like on the outside. 

Eye or like organs
  1. Pale/Med/ Gray
  2. Pale Green
  3. Violet/Grayblue
  4. Hazel
  5. Light/Med/Dark Brown
  6. Earthy Brown
  7. Blue-green aqua or two-tone hazel (roll again for another color)
  8. Jade Green
  9. Emerald
  10. Icy/Dark/Volcanic Blue
  11. Gold edges, roll again
  12. Pitch black
Hair, Fur, etc.
  1. Short
  2. Shaved
  3. Long
  4. Thick/dense
  5. Very long/very short
  6. Braided/Tails
  7. Curly/Knotted
  8. Patchy
  9. Wispy/straight
  10. Wavy/spiral
Hair Color
  1. Natural Colors (choose)
  2. Dyed (obvious)
  3. False natural
Skin Hues
  1. Porcelain /Ivory
  2. Pinked (Ruddy)
  3. Light Tan
  4. Dark Tan
  5. Bronze
  6. Multicolored
  7. Brown
  8. Ebony
Body Image Likes
As important as knowing what you look like is figuring out how you like to alter or modify it.  This table can be skipped if its not appropriate.  
  1. Jewelry and accouterments
  2. Body modifications
  3. Body painting
  4. Garments/Clothing
  5. Implants
  6. Piercings
  7. Tattoos
  8. Rings (around neck, wrist, etc.)
Quirks
This table can also be skipped as well if not desired.  However, it can provide some quirky things to make an NPC (or PC if desired) very memorable.  
  1. Poker face | Pronounced canines
  2. Mismatched eyes (two different colors) | Facial tics
  3. Wicked arched eyebrows
  4. No chin / Cold to the touch
  5. Never looks a person in the eye | Fearful of the opposite sex
  6. Crooked, obviously previously broken appendance/facial feature (like your nose)
  7. Addiction (choose)
  8. Pronounced accent | Lisp or stutter
  9. Albino | rat-like features
  10. Missing limb or sense / Hirsute
  11. Gigantic ambition
  12. Very long neck | Horrible acne
  13. Very long, delicate fingers | lizard lips (very thin lips)
  14. No sense of humor
  15. Theatrical, dramatic, larger than life
  16. Jittery, restless, no attention span
  17. Sharp chin
  18. Extremely expressive face
  19. Brawler
  20. Vocal imitation | fake accent
  21. Worrier
  22. Gaunt | Scrofulous
  23. Annoying laugh
  24. Prankster
  25. Shifty eyes | Hair lip
  26. Gossiper
  27. Major allergy
  28. Vain 
  29. Stiff old wound, impairs mobility / argumentative
  30. Loud mouthed drunk
  31. Strange smell
  32. Gluttonous, always hungry
  33. Death wish / megalomaniac
  34. Color blind
  35. Gullable
  36. Slob
Motivation
What drives you to do what you do? What dreams do you foster and what thoughts dominate your life?  This table can be used or skipped depending on need.
  1. Achievement
  2. Acquisition
  3. Keeper of the peace
  4. Rabble Rousing
  5. Approval
  6. Hedonism
  7. Adventurer
  8. Education
  9. Honor
  10. Power
  11. Play
  12. Understanding
  13. Service
  14. Creation

This ends part I.  The next section will go into further detail to help flesh out your NPCs.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Working on our first digital offering

I've spent the weekend working on our first digital offering through DrivethruRPG.  It has been a learning experience navigating their setup procedures.    I was not quite as ready as I wanted and had to get some things worked out first, like getting us in the list of publishers.  Nevertheless, I hope to report this first free offering will be available shortly.

More to come!

Monty

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Arduin Eternal Glossary

By request I've put up a glossary to  grow a list of terms for use with the AE System.  If you have ideas or additions to it, feel free to post here or on that page so I can get added.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Mounts and other Rideable Beasts

Mounts in Arduin Eternal cover a wide spectrum, ranging from horses to gliding airsharks. This range of possible mounts makes it sometimes difficult to game master well, but some typical scenarios exist across all mount types that can be generalized into some simple rules. As an example, the act of climbing aboard a steed and riding may seem simple on the outside but can have some surprising complexities when you through in beings like firemanes and airsharks. Still, outside of these exceptions we can find a common stream of basics and general rules to guide us. After all, country riding and long jaunts under the blue sky are not the fodder of adventures! No, its the spark of trouble, igniting the tinder of adventure that burns in our hearts.

Nothing replaces the basics so we shouldn't ignore them. Arduin Eternal covers a lot of things but in discussing the details of mounts it missed a lot. You can find tidbits in the Ride skill and a bit more in the Adventuring and Battle and Melee sections but not a terrible lot. So, let's start with some basics on what can count as a mount in the first place.

  • It may seem commonsense but you can't ride something that isn't big enough or strong enough to carry you. Not that smaller super strong beings couldn't carry you but a certain amount of size relative to your own is required – 25% more BODY to be exact – to allow it to act as a mount.
  • Mounts that have four or more legs and mounts that are built to carry riders add a +20 bonus to this value to determine their capacity to carry a rider. If a four-legged creature stands on two legs and has a rider, they lose this bonus until they return to four-legged movement.
  • It requires a TD 50 Ride skill check to function as a single unit in melee. Without the check, you are just a passenger, potentially an aggressive and/or active one, but still a passenger on a moving creature. You have a –30 penalty to Maneuver skills and ATK rolls. However, if you succeed, you and your mount function as a single being, ignoring this penalty and combining your BODY into a single unit for the purposes of BODY damage and your SIZE scores to determine ER. Otherwise, the benefits of unifying BODY and SIZE are negated by your lack of skill.
  • If you are a rider (instead of a passenger) you synchronize your CF with your mount and the mount handles movement, without an action on your part until you are forced to make an additional Ride check. This also means your mount is using its normal action to move and potentially its quickened action as well if you are spurring it on, asking it to dodge, etc. Synchronized CF also means its movement occurs on your CF. Mounted movement uses the mount's movement score, adjusted for carrying load and terrain.
  • Passengers are a different story. The mount moves on its own CF and takes action as it deems fit. You have no control until you retake it with a new TD 50 Ride skill check.
  • Unless unhorsed, you dismount or fall off, you continue to move with the mount. Doesn't matter whether you are a passenger or a rider.
  • If you fall from your mount, use the rules under Acrobatics on pg 238 to determine how to control it and slips and trips in the Battle and Melee section on page 454.
COMMON RIDE SKILL ACTIONS

Charge – This works as outlined on pg. 447 of the Battle and Melee section in Arduin Eternal book. Use your combined BODY and one third the encumbrance as a bonus.

Dash – This works as outlined on pg. 448 of the Battle and Melee section in Arduin Eternal book.

Leap/Jump – As outlined on page 238 under Acrobatics except your mount uses Athletics to perform the jump if if on land or in the water and Acrobatics like normal if in the air.

Overrun/TrampleAdd a +20 bonus to BODY comparisons. They also add the BODY from the load (rider, goods, etc.) the horse is carrying.

Press – Handled the same as Overrun/Trample