Hidden 5 mos ago 4 mos ago Post by Cyclone
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In the dawn of days, there was a great war of godly scale that shook the whole of Outremer. On one side there fought the forces of the untamed wilds, of chaos and evil: wyrms and krakens, giants and demons, warlocks and beasts of the moon, unspeakable and forgotten things. All of these monsters, great and small, bowed at the feet of Chernobog, the Black God. He inhaled courage and breathed out despair, devoured hope and begat only strife and misery, for his wont was nothing less than the complete destruction of mankind and ruination of the world.

To oppose him there were men. Brave and strong men, with bronze in their hands and the White God ever at their head and in their hearts. Aye, in those days the Exalted walked amongst men, and so it was that good triumphed over evil -- but barely, and with great cost. The Chernobog’s evil was rooted too deep in the world for him to be truly killed, so his body was hacked into at least a dozen pieces that were strewn across Outremer in the darkest of hidest places. Even still, the Black God’s memory and his corruption persist.

The name Chernobog is now all but forgotten by all save the most insidious of heretics and witches, being so profane that its very utterance is forbidden, just as the Exalted’s own name is too sacred for any but the most devout of priests to know. But legends still remind men of what their ancient enemy was, of all his crimes: as the Chernobog was at last smote down, he vowed eternal vengeance and threw a profane curse upon the land. His last rancid breath brought rot into the air and cursed the land with blights and diseases forevermore, and the rivers of his black blood rolled across the land and poisoned the Earth just as his hundred claws sank into her and grievously her, the hatred and thrumming of his heart he cast into the seas that it might ever stir storms. And he finally promised that one day, his own spawn, his greatest and most monstrous servants, and those mortals that lusted for his power would rise; that they would come as maggots to rot, and so complete his foul legacy.

And you are one of those that intend to fulfill this Black Prophecy.




RP Purpose and Mechanics


This RP flouts the usual tradition of stories where we see from the point of view of the good guys. Here we have an RP where instead of the questing knight, the humble peasant turned hero, or the wizened wizard, you are some fell warlord, monstrous beast, or other dark power. Your characters might only aspire to have a small realm and bastion of their own or they might seek nothing less than the utter annihilation of mankind; they might be willing to tolerate or even ally with the other various scions and rogue beings, or they might want to cast down all their bastard siblings and reign uncontested as the second Chernobog. That’s all up to you.

As the introduction alludes to, there are two general roles that you might fulfill: that of a scion of the old Chernobog, or that of some sort of rogue being. You may have one character of each type if you’d like; however, if you do that then as a general rule your rogue being should not align with or serve your scion. The point of having one of each would be to allow you to interact with more people and more characters, and having both your rogue being and scion together all the time defeats the purpose of that.

Scions would be the most innately powerful of the two categories, their nature as the Chernobog’s spawn making them something like demigods. They would more like than not be remembered in some form in the legends of old, for they would have all served in the Chernobog’s armies and doubtless committed great crimes of their own, and for their part, they would have been slain or banished to some other plane or imprisoned by the Exalted One and his followers. Having only just now been resurrected or summoned or broken free as the case may be, a scion will be returning to a somewhat unfamiliar world where steel has replaced bronze and the men are much more numerous than they once were, even as the savage beings and monsters have diminished. Still, a scion should be able to use their dark powers to raise a new army easily enough. Perhaps the pitiful remnants of the Chernobog’s old horde could be rallied, or some of the weak-willed humans subjugated by sword or by poisoned word and manipulation. And failing that, there are ways to use foul magic to twist and corrupt life to make new breeds of monstrous creatures, ways to raise the dead, ways to conjure demons and monsters from other realms. A true heir of Chernobog would find a way.



The second category is more broad and flexible. Rogue beings could take many forms and vary quite greatly in power level -- anything from an ancient vampire to a dragon can fall under the realm of possibility. And while a rogue being could be some ancient monster that’s been around since the dawn of time and served under the Chernobog, it could also just be some humble orcish chieftain or some evil-hearted human sorcerer. While rogue beings can be powerful, their magical might is not so great as that of the scions. It would be harder for them to bring down the realms of men by themselves, to raise an army, or to carve out an empire of their own. For those reasons a rogue being might do well to align with a scion for protection and mutual benefit, but some might choose to stay rogue -- the path is yours to choose.

This would be a mostly sandbox-style RP where we give all participants a lot of leeway to worldbuild and fill in the empty spaces on the map, either by canonizing smaller settlements and such or expanding upon the nature of larger ones. We GMs do not need to control the human opposition along every inch of the way; you can have your character sack a village or slay some band of knights without involving us in the post, but if your intention is to topple a kingdom or conquer some major city then please do consult us. We reserve the right to throw a metaphorical monkey wrench into your operations, to keep things from getting complacent. You can't expect to rampage across the world with nothing ever going wrong, now can you?

Outremer, our setting and details thereof


Though sailors speak of queer and exotic lands beyond the seas, the scope of this RP is limited to the land of Outremer. It is a quite isolated (both geographically and politically) island of a size comparable to that of Great Britain. In present times Outremer is politically fractured into many realms of petty-kings and dukes, but was once unified under a single kingdom for many centuries following the Chernobog’s defeat. In those times of unity, the last of the great monsters and wyrms were hunted down and either vanquished or driven into the deepest lairs and hiding places, and his more organized and numerous followers like the ogres and goblins were diminished and driven into hiding if not extinction. There was a ‘common tongue’ universally spoken across Outremer and it is the root of all modern languages, though the centuries have of course bastardized certain regional dialects to the point that they have grown very distinct, and are oft only barely intelligible by speakers of other heavily changed dialects.

Despite its small size, the island’s climate is quite varied. Though much of the coastline remains temperate, the placement of mountain ranges has created an arid region in the south and a cold highland in the north.

The land has been mostly tamed, with true wilderness being the exception rather than the norm throughout much of the island and most of the arable land being farmed. Only a few true wilds remain in some of the most rugged, inhospitable, and remote locations; in such places there might still be great beasts and maybe even some goblins or other wretched descendants of the forces that once served in the Chernobog’s vast hosts.

Geography







The Fell Peoples

While the hosts of Chernobog teemed with many beings strange and terrible, their backbone were the monstrous, inhuman races that became known as the Fell Peoples. Orcs, ogres and trolls once swept the land in thronging hordes, revelling in the slaughter and destruction they sowed. No one knows for certain where they came from, and myths and rumours abound about their origins. Some believe that they were once men twisted and transformed by the dark one through torment and mutilation, others that they were raised from the soil with enchantments, others yet that they were bred in the depths of the earth from still fouler things. Whatever the truth might be, it is certain that only Chernobog and his scions held the knowledge of bringing them forth in great numbers, for since the disappearance of their masters they have dwindled to a shadow of their former might.

A rowdy and fractious kind, the Fell Peoples were only ever united under the banner of the Black God. When he was vanquished, their many warbands and tribes fell into disorder and took to fighting each other as much as the forces of men. This left them easy prey for the victorious armies of the Holy Kingdom, and their remnants were scattered and hunted down to the ends of Outremer. Now few of them remain, skulking in the most remote and untamed corners of the land and only occasionally making a nuisance of themselves. Though some rare places, such as Arugoth and Bad Teeth, house more sizable holdouts, they by and large remain incapable of organizing anything more than sporadic raiding parties, and are only kept safe by the imperviousness of their lairs.







Magic

True magic is an elusive power in this world, difficult to wield and always coming at a cost: be that in the form of time, rare reagents, sacrificial blood, some mix of the three, or more. Magic is like fire, useful yet dangerous, only an order of magnitude harder to control or predict than mere flames. In general the usage of magic is too laborious to be of much use in combat, as extensive preparations must go into any ritual that hopes to channel potent magic.

Much of the humans’ lore and understanding of the arcane has faded over the years. Still, there are doubtless some old traditions that have still existed; the clergy, especially those of Paterdomus, would be most likely to know such secrets. More sinister woods witches and heretical warlocks might also exist, though for every true one that deserved his fate there’s probably a dozen falsely accused that end up on the gibbet or burnt at the stake.

If ever the fell folk wielded such powers, they have forgotten how. Ancient scions and rogue beings certainly might remember the ways, though.

From the old myths come tales of magic being used for a great variety of things, from speaking to spirits to reanimating the dead, from twisting the flesh of mundane creatures to summoning things from nightmarish realms beyond mortal understanding.



Technology Level and Culture


There was once a single, unified realm of man that ruled almost all of Outremer, founded in the dawn of days and ruled by a line of kings descended from one great general that had been crowned by the Exalted One himself. But change comes -- men grew more numerous, bronze gave way to steel, and nothing lasts forever. Although this so-called Holy Kingdom lasted for a hundred lifetimes, the line of kings was eventually broken and the realm fell into civil war and splintered apart into many divided states. That happened centuries ago, so there has been ample time for new national identities to grow between the various states, and for grudges and alliances to have formed and shifted even as language and religion and nearly all aspects of the various societies slowly drifted apart.

Outremer now stands technologically and culturally similar to Europe as it was in the Late Date Ages and Early Medieval time periods; perhaps on par with Earth as it was around the ninth or tenth century.

Though men learned the secrets of working iron and steel a long time ago, and now even the savage orcs have had enough time to master such crafts, good steel remains expensive and skilled smiths are a precious commodity. Most common warriors would be levied peasants with poor arms and equipment. Men-at-arms that make a profession of killing might own mail and helmet and perhaps even a sword, but most common warriors would fight with furs, leather, or padded cloth for armor and for weapons bring spear, axe, or hammer. For the most part only knights and lords can afford to go into battle fully clad in breastplate, greaves, and the like.

Serfdom and/or chattel slavery are nearly universal institutions across the land, though different cultures may of course have very different rules and expectations for such practices.





Credits and References


Big thanks to my Co-GM @Oraculum for helping me to write out this OOC and for always being there to bounce ideas.

Here was the interest check for this RP.

This comes as a continuation of sorts of some old RPs based upon a computer game called Dungeon Keepers. Over 10 years ago the first of them started on the now-defunct Spore Forums, and afterward @Lugubrious@BBeast and myself brought them to the Oldguild and then here. I would like to give my thanks to them for their help way back then, and to them as well as everyone who joined for the fun memories of those RPs. This is the most recent of those old RPs, and this was a spinoff that I made later.

The cool picture was artwork commissioned by a friend of mine who is working on making a new computer game with a theme very similar to this RP. So thanks to him for letting me use his picture, and if you’re interested in his thing then you can check out his Discord server here.




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Hidden 5 mos ago 5 mos ago Post by ZAVAZggg
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Slidin on in.

EDIT: Here's my sheet. Let me know if I should change anything, and as for the theme I'm going for, it's very much Lovecraftian. More the creeping madness and horror part, especially near the beginning of his arc.
Hidden 5 mos ago Post by Forett
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I will be sliding in sometime this Sunday!
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Hidden 5 mos ago 5 mos ago Post by Vec
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-rejected
Hidden 5 mos ago Post by Humble1
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Humble1 Archives Rat

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Hidden 5 mos ago Post by Cyclone
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In case anybody here is turning up without having seen my message on the interest check, here is a link to the Discord.

@Humble1 Would you happen to already be on the Discord under a different username? I'd be interested in hearing about some of your potential plans for Shiran.
Hidden 5 mos ago Post by Flagg
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Flagg Strange. This outcome I did not foresee.

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Work in progress


Hidden 5 mos ago Post by Sierra
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Sierra The Dark Lord

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Felt like I should mention I've been lurking ln this since the int check was posted. I already have a character adaptation in mind. It won't take me too long to write it up.
Hidden 5 mos ago Post by Pagemaster
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@Cyclone, discord link is busted. I might be keen to drop a character. I like the idea of being an evil critter.
Hidden 5 mos ago 5 mos ago Post by Antarctic Termite
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Hidden 5 mos ago Post by Vec
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@Cyclone@Antarctic Termite

Speak of the devil and he doth appear. Nice seeing ya here :)
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Hidden 5 mos ago 5 mos ago Post by Antarctic Termite
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Alright, for real this time. Here's a character concept I'm messing around with.

Nice to be here again!



Still settling on art for this char, this one by Alex Chow makes her look a little too evil.
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Hidden 5 mos ago Post by Cyclone
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Felt like I should mention I've been lurking ln this since the int check was posted. I already have a character adaptation in mind. It won't take me too long to write it up.


Ah, nice to finally meet you then. I'll look forward to seeing what you come up with. Might you have already joined the Discord under a different username? If not, it'd be nice if you did since most of the talking is going on over there.

@Cyclone, discord link is busted. I might be keen to drop a character. I like the idea of being an evil critter.


Yeah I've been setting the links to expire after a day just because I don't like to leave the door permanently open on a publicly visible page; makes spambots etc. possible. I saw your PM and sent you a new link there already, but I'll post another one here for anybody else out there.
Hidden 5 mos ago 5 mos ago Post by Sophrus
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Hidden 5 mos ago Post by Sierra
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@Cyclone Big negative on that. My discord handle is @Sierra#0637 so its pretty easy to correlate if I'm in a place or not. One of the perks of a relatively standardized internet handle.
Hidden 5 mos ago 4 mos ago Post by Forett
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Updated version, keeping the old one posted.

New one;


Hidden 5 mos ago 5 mos ago Post by Antarctic Termite
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Aight here's a narrative version.

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Hidden 5 mos ago Post by CollectorOfMyst
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Welp. I see someone else has already gone for a Wyrmlord archetype. Though I suppose my idea was more a 'rogue being' human/warlock who had an army of wyvern riders. Would that be okay, or are my hopes to be dashed against the rocks?
Hidden 5 mos ago Post by Vec
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There's been a lot of overlap in many characters thus far so nothing is off the table imo...
Hidden 5 mos ago Post by Forett
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@CollectorOfMyst

Most of the stuff I will be winging around are big ole' monsters. The good news if you do decide to make a rogue being along that line is, at least from what I gather, our characters would align well. It could be that your character is more aware of the world/current time, and my character gives you creatures to add to your army in exchange for information and service. Mutual gains and all that jazz.

If none of that is your jam, you can always just use your original idea! My character is more or less an undead abomination in the shape of a dragon.
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