Olarune 19th, 994 YK (Free-form Eberron)

 
Olarune 19th, 994 YK (Free-form Eberron)

FlavorWhat if Siberys were to wake and look down upon the corpse of his sister? Where would his gaze wander? What would he perceive?

Would he spare a second glance for Xen'drik, where the civilization that lasted for tens of thousands of years has been gone for tens of thousands more? Could even his eyes pierce the veils of secrecy that have sprung up around Sarlona? Would his gaze linger on Argonnessen, where those who believe himself his offspring have retreated to contemplate the world from afar?

And could he comprehend the swarming riot of life that has sprung up in an eyeblink on Khorvaire? Would he wonder at the marks that mortals bear and think the doing of his siblings? Would he notice the war that has torn the continent apart for only a few months short of a century? Could he know that in east, south, and west whatever dominion the humans claimed has all but vanished?

Or would his eyes be caught by the gleam of light off marble, the alluring glow of happiness and prosperity even in the midst of war? Could even the Dragon Above tear his gaze away from Metrol?

Whether or not he can, soon he will be forced to turn his gaze away. For tomorrow, the city will burn--and as the smoke streams away so too will its inhabitants, forced to make for themselves new lives.
ExplanationEberron is an outstanding campaign setting; it's a pity that people use it only to run campaigns in.

Let me unpack that statement. The most interesting parts of Eberron, in my opinion, are its history and its politics. Both of these things, however, tend to get jettisoned or at least de-emphasized in the typical campaign. This is made hard to avoid by the very nature of D&D; when you're filling out a character sheet which focuses mainly on fighting, it's reasonable to expect that you're going to do mainly fighting.

I want to invert this expectation, and let people attempt intrigue and inquiry rather than expeditions to Xen'drik. There's a place in Eberron for swashbuckling and treasure-hunting; indeed, campaigns based on these can easily thrive. There's also a place for film noir and murder mysteries, and gritty campaigns also work well in Eberron.

What I'm saying, then, is that I don't really want to run a campaign, which is inevitably forced to subjugate digressions to the needs of the overplot, however epic. I want to explore those digressions and details.

I want interesting characters; I also want interesting players. I want characters who have goals; I want players who have the motivation to create new goals once the first set have been met. I want characters who aren't centered around combat (perhaps characters who have never fought; I want players who are interested in things beyond killing and looting. I want characters who inhabit the world around them; I want players who want to explore and create every last detail of that world. And I want it in Eberron.
PremiseThe campaign will start on the evening of Zor, Olarune 19th, 994 YK. All of the PCs will be in Metrol, though they won't necessarily know each other. When the Day of Mourning begins, all of the PCs will be temporarily thrown together to work to escape--and that will be my first and last act of railroading for the whole game. I don't much care if the PCs stick together after that--it's probable that at least a couple will, but I fully expect everyone to pursue their own agenda.
MechanicsAs I said above, I want to de-emphasize pointless combat in favor of roleplaying. Because of this, you have four choices:

1)Diceless. We roleplay everything out, and together we decide what succeeds and what fails based entirely on what best suits the narrative.

2)GURPS 4th Edition. If you want some way of quantifying your character's abilities, GURPS is a great way to do this that doesn't focus primarily on combat. I have some familiarity with GURPS, though I'm not entirely comfortable with it yet--but I'd like to learn. So if you go this route, I'd recommend that you know the system well enough to correct me when I screw up.

3)D&D 3.5. This is, after all, what Eberron was designed for, and I wouldn't be much of a DM if I couldn't handle it. If you're comfortable with this, go ahead and use it, but be aware that battle will be secondary.

4)Something else. If your application is compelling enough, I'm willing to try to learn whatever rules-light system you want, within reason.

A special note about D&D 4: a central premise of 4th Edition is that PCs are fundamentally special, and aren't equal to NPCs. Thus for instance whereas 3.5 statted out monsters and NPCs the same way it did PCs, 4th edition abandons this. That's all well and good for most campaigns, and I have nothing against 4th edition--but a central premise of this game is that your character is special because they work at it through their words and actions, not because they started out that way. So 4th edition is out for this game.
Character CreationNo matter which mechanical system you choose, what I care most about is your character concept. This can be best summed up by re-reading my statements in the "Explanation" section of this advertisement. I want your character to feel like part of Eberron, and I want them to have personality. If that's met, everything else is secondary.

GURPS: Go with whatever power limit you want, but keep in mind that the PCs I want are inhabitants of their world, not godlike beings who function outside of it. So I'd hope you'll voluntarily restrict yourself--part of the fun for me is building up your character from zero to hero (or villain, or criminal mastermind, or whatever), so if you must have a power level go with 100 points. If you're looking for mechanics for things like races and dragonmarks, hunt around in this thread and see if you can find anything that's helpful. Otherwise, we'll make it up as we go along.

D&D: Again, go with whatever level you want (no gestalt, though). Game balance will be provided by the fact that we're roleplaying, not rollplaying. Thus I don't care if one of you is 1st level and one is 10th. In the spirit of what I said above, though, characters just starting out will be looked upon most favorably by me. So I'd recommend 1st or 2nd level, and anything past 4th level will have to be really intriguing. Similarly, you're free to assign attributes as you see fit--but please nothing much above 18 before racial adjustments, and those who intentionally limit themselves will be looked upon favorably. Add a number of cross-class skills equal to your wisdom modifier to your class skill list. Oh, and one last thing--double your number of skill points. Skills are good.
Acceptable Source MaterialAll of the Eberron books, obviously, both for flavor and crunch. I have everything else D&D 3.5, and I own or can borrow all of the GURPS 4th books. For any other wacky system, please provide me a link to the rules somewhere on the internet.
ResourcesI welcome people new to Eberron, as long as they're willing to put some effor into learning the setting. The articles here are a decent starting points, as is the Wikipedia article. In addition, the Grand History of Eberron, a freely available fan-made document, contains everything you'll ever need to know about Eberron, though it's best as a reference rather than an introduction.
PacingAs we'll be in solo threads most of the time, as fast as you want to go. I'd like to achieve one post per day at least, but that's not entirely necessary.
Application ProcessI'm not going to provide a recommended format for the application. Give me whatever it takes. Thinking about what I might want is a sign that you have some minimum level of commitment to this game.

But there are two things that I want from you in addition to whatever else you want to provide. First, I want a reason why your character is in Metrol the day before the Mourning. Second, for my own selfish purposes I want a possible explanation for the Mourning. This can be what your character believes (or will believe in a few days), or it can be something you yourself have dreamed up. Who knows, maybe one of your explanations is actually true!

Applications will be due on Friday, 1/30, at 8 PM EST. You don't have to have everything perfectly worked out by then, but I'll only take into account what's been posted or PMed when I decide who to accept.

Speaking of accepting people, I'd love to accept everyone who proves that they're interested by submitting a good application. But the demands of RL mean that I can't spend all of my waking hours running this game (just most of them ). So I'll probably accept 4-6 players at first, certainly no more than 8.


I realize this advertisement is incoherent, but most of what you need should be in there. For guidance, consult the Explanation section first, see the planning thread here, and realize that the answer to most mechanical questions will be "whatever works best for your character concept."

Enjoy!

Applications

lasseram: <censored>, D&D 3.5
Jomonkey527: Armstead, D&D 3.5
Chryson: Gypsy, D&D 3.5
Crossroad: Baelonn d'Cannith, diceless
pink peril: Sabriel D'Cannith, diceless
Galedeep: Estrick Tiberiun Gennet, GURPS
ShadowBright: Teela, D&D 3.5
koipond: <censored>, ?
Sarcastro: <censored>, ?

Well I'm writting up my app now, it'll be 3.5, the character is a Changling Bard, willing to do almost anything for a buck, but dreams of being a famous preformer, (more later trust me this is just the intro.

My app

Character Name: Armstead
Race: Human
Exorcist of the Silver Flame
Level: 1Cleric/1Rogue (assassin)
Chaotic Good

Character Appearance: See my avatar.Green eyes, brown hair, 6 feet tall and about 200lbs.

Character History:
Armstead finds himself starting out on his pilgrimage like others of the Church of the Silver Flame, but equally important he begins his own personal mission. While his goals will always be to cleanse and eliminate the evils of the world, he also wants learn more about those same evils to better learn how to defeat them, and he also finds himself heading toward Metrol and towards the man he hopes holds the keys to his parents mysterious deaths. With war just beginning to break out he now finds himself having to resort to some deception to sneak his way into Metrol, and is determined to find Xyzal Renwood whatever it takes. Jaela Daran, the spiritual leader of the Church of the Silver Flame has always seemed to take an unusual interest in such a young clerics doings, especially when she is so young herself. This is part of what drives Armstead to succeed in both his missions because he feels the reason she is so hard on him may be intricately involved in the death of his parents who were murdered by what he believes may be due to church hierarchy scheming.

Armstead though is very good in heart and compassionate, a trait he must have acquired from watching his parents as a youth in Flamekeep often tending to injured victims of the war. He also has a darker side that is often hidden to most. He holds firmly to the Tenet of Purity of the Silver Flame, and thus his main goal is to: Burn the corruption and taint of evil from all Eberron. Other Gods may have begun the Creation, but it is the Silver Flame, by searing wickedness and darkness from their imperfect world that must complete it. So there is no gray area, things are pretty much black and white, especially when it comes to good v.s. evil. He believes that while Jaela is but a young girl, he feels she has been divinely touched. As such his secondary goal is to prove to Jaela that he is worthy and has serious aspirations of moving up in that same church hierarchy to cleanse any possible evil hiding within the church and hopefully at the same time avenging his parents.

Armstead believes that diplomacy is first, but the sword is a close second when dealing with humans, elves, etc. He will resort to using the sword to further the aims of the Church of the Silver Flame (think Silas from DaVinci code/Altair from Assassins Creed). Armstead is very confident in his intelligence as well as his worldly mission and that of the Flames', which can make him seem cocky and even arrogant at times, which is truly not the case and in fact quite the opposite.

Armstead believes the Day of Mourning is a sign that the Silver Flame needs to be more steadfast and be quicker to act when it comes to removing evil from the face of Eberron. He also when made aware of the moves of agents of the Lords of Dust, the greatest enemy of the Silver Flame, and also the Order of the Emerald Claw will stop at nothing to take them out. This is where the rogue/assassin class could be pretty fun. It also allows me to slip away from the main group for some side action and allows me to post frequently as I work from home and will post often.


Story Intro:
“Help me! Help me!” cries a woman in a back alley. As Armstead approaches he realizes the woman is desperately hanging onto her purse with one hand, and even more desperately holding onto her infant with the other. “Hand over the coins now and maybe I will spare you and the child,” barks the ruffian in tattered clothes. Awkward and visibly nervous Armstead sees this is no trained rogue, but rather an evil man who needs to be given the chance to stop his actions, one way or another. Realizing this can go badly if he hesitates Armstead sees a ladder and begins climbing to an open window 10 feet up. “Let her go!” He yells out of the window safely out of view. Whether due to arrogance or the distortion of his voice in the alley the ruffian never bothering to turn around says, “This is none of your concern, leave us or I will deal with you next cur.” It need not have mattered if he turned around or not. He never realized that death was coming from above. Having already unsheathed his sword and climbed out onto the window sill, Armstead gauged the trajectory and bracing his sword pointing downward he jumps building speed as he falls driving the sword through the top of the would be rogues skull, brain stem and then into his cervical spine. A few death spasms, a quick wipe off of his blade on the rogue’s shirt and his first kill ever is over. The woman and her child have already disappeared out of the alley into the crowd before his blade is even finished being cleaned. Panicking Armstead climbs the ladder all the way to the rooftop. After sitting for what seemed to him to be hours, but in reality was mere minutes, he stops shaking and begins coming to grips with the fact that he did what was right and necessary in his fight to remove evil from Eberron, and in his own more personal mission to discover the truth of his parents deaths. He gave the man a chance to stop what he was doing and he chose his own fate. Bolstered in that fact he gets the nerve to peer over the edge and to his chagrin sees that the guards that barred his earlier entrance still very much in place. “I must avenge my parents. I have to gain access to the city somehow.” Shaking his head while looking up into the heavens his mind wanders back to when he first opened the chest and began this journey.

Three months ago after turning 22 Armstead’s scars of losing his parents at 18 have finally healed or at least scabbed over enough to allow him to open the chest that was given to him upon the mysterious death of his parents. Quickly pushing the various texts, scrolls, and tomes, he sees something that catches his eye. A silver polished tube, capped on one end with an ornate golden cap with the seal of the Silver Flame etched into it. Carefully unscrewing the end cap he pulls out the rolled up parchment. Reading it he quickly recognizes the handwriting is that of his father’s, though it’s not nearly as beautiful as usual. It’s almost as if it was written under duress. The scroll reads:
If you are reading this my son, we did not get a chance to speak before we parted ways and that means we met an unfortunate end and you may also be in danger from within. Get to Metrol under the guise of your pilgrimage. While there you must find Xyzal Renwood a former priest of the Church of the Silver Flame and friend of ours .Go with all haste and we will meet again when the evil has been cleansed from the world.

Snapping back to the present Armstead quickly finds his resolve and regains his composure, as a plan begins formulating in his minds eye. Once again Armstead looks to the heavens and whispers, “I will find Xyzal and you shall be avenged!” Once again using the ladder Armstead climbs down and looks at the dead body, the result of one of the more unsavory skills he has in his arsenal to fight evil. “Yes, you will do quite nicely,” he says as the plan continues to play out in his mind. Trying to carry the dead body up the ladder is not going to work. Armstead tries opening the many doors in the alley to maybe use a staircase inside to carry the body up. While certainly not a weakling, other methods are going to have to work here he quickly realizes. Reaching into his belt he pulls out a long slender
One of Armsteads's friends growing up much to the chagrin of his parents was a young rogue named Cha 'Ryssa. They often spent hours together with Armstead trying to change his friends mischevious but in now way evil ways, and Cha "Ryssa getting a kick out of watching her "priestly friend" attempt often in vain simple lock picking. Upon preparing for his pilgrimmage and mission to Metrol, Armstead realized that he could begin to develop the skills Cha"Ryssa had taught him to use in his battle against evil as an Exorcist of the Silver Flame. This realization brings sadness to Armstead as he has not seen Cha'Ryssa in many years and would love to see her again. The strange thing is Armstead's feelings are something that seems much different than the feelings he had for her when they were younger. Even stranger considering her Drow heritage. Once Armsteads theological studies began taking up more of his time, there was thus less time to continue thier once close friendship.
pick and goes to work on one of the three doors. Giving up on the first door after three tries Armstead finds luck on the second door as he hears the soft “click” of the door handles locking mechanism pop open. Slowly opening the door he looks and listens for anyone who may be inside. Hearing nothing he goes back into the alley and grabs the body. Hoisting the dead ruffian over his shoulder he heads inside and up the flight of stairs. “Now, to find a way onto the roof.” Looking up Armstead sees a drawstring for an attic. Pulling down on the drawstring he sees some light coming from the attic where he had expected it to be pitch dark. Again grabbing the body that is now beginning to feel like two bodies due to his fatigue, he finally finds himself in the attic and looking down a window that is facing the alley. Climbing out onto the window sill and onto the roof he is thankful that the window opens onto the roof, since there is no way he could have pulled the body up. Dragging the body across the roof to the side of the building where the wall and guards are, he takes one last peek around to make sure his plan has the best chance of succeeding. If anyone sees him this mission will be over. Grabbing the body he rolls it off the side of the building. After hearing the thud of the body hitting the ground, Armstead is rewarded even further when he hears the guards, and the crowd at the gates screaming and running around in confusion. Quickly using the distraction Armstead runs from the far side of the roof and leaps to the top of the wall. As soon as his feet hit the wall he pushes immediately off the wall diving onto the flat rooftop of another building similar in height to the one he leapt from, except this time he has landing in Metrol. Continuing moving in this fashion leaping from house to house, and building to building, he makes his way deeper and deeper into Metrol though not with any destination in mind, just wanting to get as far away from the gate, the guards and the body he left behind. “This should be safe enough,” he says dropping onto his stomach and grabbing the gutter of the house he is on. Taking a quick look around before he drops he sees a barrel, which he can use to hide behind once he drops to shield himself from the street. No sooner does he drop down than a door opens. “By the Flame how could I be so careless?” To make matters worse looking toward the street he sees three guards passing by heading probably toward the gate and keeping an eye out for murderer that is on the loose. Looking back to the door that is now fully opened Armstead sees someone he certainly did not expect. Bringing his pointer finger to his mouth he quietly whispers, “Shhhh.” The woman from the alley says nothing just looks into the green eyes of the man who saved her and her infant son, nods and quietly closes the door. Pulling the cowl back on his cloak, he slowly and much more carefully makes his way toward the street. Taking a glance around, Armstead pulls the cowl back over his head partly hiding his face in shadow and says, “Now where to begin...Where to find Xyzal Renwood?”






Armsteads skills in keeping with the teachings of the Silver Flame would have the following class skills.
Concentration (Int)
Craft(Int)
Intimidate(Cha) rogue might find this useful
Knowledge of arcana (Int)
Profession(Wis)
Spellcraft (Int)


As a new player one of the things I will need help some of the rogue/assassins skills, and the clerical spells and skills. If my app. is chosen I plan on doing a lot of reading on Ebberon. I know we are going diceless in some cases and think that would work best for me, but want it to work better for the DM too. How the class skills, and skills would play into it would remain to be seen. Again being the new the dice rolling has me intimidated as do the many rules. If chosen as stated I would be delving deeply into Eberron, novels, and more studying of the links you provided, and under the DM's suggestion would get myself a player’s handbook if needed. What I lack in mechanics (not having done PnP in many, many years) I will make up for imagination and dedicating posting, and more than anything I am willing to learn as this will be my first game played ever on MW.

Hmmm...I'll probably join up. I've got nothing concrete yet, but probably a kalashtar wilder or Daelkyr half-blood warlock, with immense connection to his quori spirit or symbiont.

Hmmm...I'll probably join up. I've got nothing concrete yet, but probably a kalashtar wilder or Daelkyr half-blood warlock, with immense connection to his quori spirit or symbiont. Probably mid-level. (more coming)

Name: Gypsy
Race: Changling
Class: Bard (2)

Gypsy was found abandoned in a forest by a traveling performing troupe called The Saru-gaku. Her father had spent his life pretending to be a human, and was afraid to be found out. When he realized his daughter had been born a Changling he abandoned her not wanting to risk himself getting caught. The troupe that found her raised her as their own, and taught her the arts of singing dancing and acting, which she took to and loved. Though her entire life despite her love of her adoptive family she knew she wasn't going to be fine just staying with them, and when she was 18 she left to find her own way and become the world's greatest actress (at least in her own mind). She has no problem being any form or any persona, and rarely keeps ties with anyone. Some people know her different personas, but the only people who know her true Changling form is the acting troupe, who don't speak to outsiders.

Gypsy came to Metrol on a delivery job, meaning she was hired to steal some amulet from a tomb for a bit of gold. She had been hired by means of a letter, sent to find a human male named James, (She got the leader instead while she was dating James, though she was a human female named lydia. As soon as she found the letter she stole James' face and took off again.) and decided to spend some time in the city. This was her first time in Metrol and she wanted to see the sites, and maybe see how much money she could make preforming.

The mourning could be a Wizard's attempt create a new spell that was ment to help Metrol in some great way, but it backfires and instead wipes it out. (Just a guess really :P)

Going to use the GURPS system, reading up on GURPS magic right now, will get an application up.


Private feedback for lasseram:

@Jomonkey: interesting premise. I can definitely see the rogue and cleric parts of him, but I'm having trouble fitting your assignment of wizard training into his background so far. Is it just for mechanical reasons (in which case, get rid of it), or is there some aspect of his personality that hasn't come out yet in your description?

I'd urge you to check out p. 377-81 of the Grand History of Eberron, for more info on the Silver Flame and its constituent factions.

Does Armstead know Jaela personally? If so, how--it would be rare for a fairly low-ranking member of the Church to interact much with her--that could be interesting.

Finally, check out the changes to skills I made in the opening post.

@Chyrson: The character is interesting, but she doesn't really seem to be an inhabitant of Eberron yet. It would be great if you could insert that into her background.

@Crossroad: sounds fun. Looking forward to the app.

ok, thanks for the imput I'll work on it later, I have to read up more on Eberron since I know very little about the actual setting but I'll be back to edit... tomorrow

Totally interested. Diceless for me, though.

I already have a basic concept for a character, but I know very little of Eberron. I don't mind learning (not now, though, it's like almost 5 in the morning over here), so I guess that isn't a problem ?

And what would be your take on a character with powerful abilities, but whose abilities are not exactly geared for combat, and neither the character is ? And the character would be pretty inexperienced as well, so she probably wouldn't be able to use her abilities to their full extent.




 

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