AP: Rats in the Embassy / 2017.01.14

  •  We established our charter, our fighting styles and how we met. (Basically… in a tavern.) We also found out that Tolles, Solace and Tetra don’t talk a lot about their pasts. And that the three big adventuring companies are far, far, out of town.
  •  We are offered a job (summoned) by the Ambassador of Wylmar and immediately make our way to their Embassy. After being made to wait (and some of us identifying someone standing behind a fake wall, presumably spying on us), we meet with the Ambassador and her chief of security (___). Again, some of us are more perceptive than others and detect that the sword on display in her office is an illusion and that the ambassador is wearing a bit of illusory make-up. Just before being let in, some of us also overhear something about ‘a spy’ and a questioning of our capabilities.
  • We are informed that there is some sort of rat problem in the kitchen. We are experts at rat problems. She offers 100gp per rat – carcasses must be presented. We are shown downstairs and quickly start searching the kitchen. We’re slightly tempted to investigate some mail on the counter, but it’s clear they’re for the cook and we don’t disturb them.
  • It turns out the rats have burrowed under the stove.. and… that they’re invisible. The ensuing fight is more challenging than we expected and takes us into the neighbouring pantry. Laz gets pretty roughed up but Verdad is fortunately there with clerical healing and tumbling hexahedrons (I think that was the shape). Tetra’s raven gets in a few good licks as does her celestial hound – who also takes a pummeling. A fireball and some stabbings later, and we have four dead – now visible – rats.
  • Tolles also discovers some scrape marks. As though large cages – the right size to hold a couple of dire rats had been dragged into the corner.  The invisibility is a very sophisticated spell. This was a very unusual situation. Nevertheless, Verdad is excited to take the bodies back for food for his fellow Pun-pun worshipers – but he can only carry one.
  • We return to report to the ambassador and, after informing her about the invisibility, receive an extra 600gp. She expects she knows who is messing with the embassy. People who want to cause trouble and distract them from their important work.
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Wings of Salvation

Here are a few final notes about your adventuring company’s most recent activities, and the day-to-day running of an adventuring company.

Money, Rent, Insurance, and Taxes

You are expected to pay rent and insurance.

Rent depends on where you decide you want to have your “home base” in the city — something to discuss during the first session.  This should probably be a house or section of an apartment building that is dedicated to your group, if you want to be efficient.  Otherwise, if you live separate from the party, you’ll have to pay a separate rent tab.  Either way, the Diplomat’s Circle is probably out of your price range.  Prices range from free (if you’re living in the Ghost Yards, which is not advisable), to cheap (2 GP/month for a tiny place in the Warforged District, utilities and pest control not included) to decent (75 GP/month for a five-ish person house near the Wizard’s District) to the expensive (a mansion in the Temple District might be 700 GP/month or more) to the exorbitant (in the Diplomat’s Circle, don’t even ask).

As a fairly new adventuring company, your insurance is with Dervit’s Shield, and costs 2000 GP per month.  (This may seem like a lot, but there are only eight months in a year, and adventurers can cause a lot of damage if they run amok.)

The shared coffer can be used for paying rent, buying shared equipment (whose owner is then the adventuring company, not the individual) or hiring sub-contractors, such as a Verdad or a secretary.  By default, disbursement requires the signatures of at least two members of the adventuring party for amounts above 500 GP, unless you choose to have something else in your charter for that.

For smaller things (such as foodstuffs), you can treat those as covered by the adventuring company budget and not worry about it unless you’re subsisting entirely on caviar.  You are also free to assume that you have various “non-adventuring possessions” stored at your home which aren’t directly useful for combat purposes — extra clothing, sentimental items, your kid brother’s latest “art” piece, and so on.  Anything expensive (fancy art, high-quality jewelry, etc) should be deducted from your starting money, as it could potentially be sold later due to its value.

You will also need to pay taxes.  Sales taxes in Moil are 10% of the sales price in most cases, with some exceptions for luxury goods (which are somewhat more highly taxed) and illegal goods (for which you will need to pay both the sales tax and a bribe).  This doesn’t apply to your starting supplies, but it will apply to all your future purchases.  You’re also expected to pay a 10% income tax on any treasure recovered or fees paid to your company.

Your adventuring company starts with 8,000 GP in the shared account.

Mechanically, this means that I’ll be giving you more wealth than is standard for your level, but you’ll have more expenses to compensate.  So, you could spend it all on new equipment, but you might eventually get in trouble with your landlord.  Or, worse, a Rogental auditor.

Wings of Salvation Ledger

Charter

You should have one!  What is your core purpose, as an adventuring company?  (And, in light of that, how did you all meet, anyway?)  I expect we’ll work on putting this together during the first session.

Wings of Salvation Charter

Moil

History

For most of Moil’s history, it has not been the capital of Rogent — or anywhere else.  The honor originally went to Over-Moil, and Moil was its smaller mirror on the Floor of the World Within.  Both cities were founded within two centuries of the creation of the World Within, and both claim to have been founded first.  (Scholars consider Over-Moil more likely to be older, due to its location on the Ceiling and some of its more ancient remaining structures.)

Nonetheless, Moil has a rich history as a center of commerce on the Floor and a favorite launching-point for exploration of the less civilized quarters of the World Within.  In particular, most of the early expeditions to explore what is now Life’s Edge were launched from Moil, as the distance across the ocean is smaller on the Floor.  Moil also has the advantage of being closer to Mynythe’s mineral riches.

The first airships were invented and constucted in Moil, a few years before the Forged War.  This quickly drew a portion of the Floor-Ceilling traffic from the Syeltau-Unteltau column in Wylmar into Rogent, to Moil and Over-Moil.  These early airships helped trigger the Forged War, by amplifying the trade dispute between Mynythe and Rogent.  They were also critical in the early war effort.  However, Mynythe’s artificers quickly duplicated and improved the technology.  This ultimately led to the burning of Moil near the end of the war.  Nearly the entire city burned; only the buildings made from stone and a few structures near the ocean survived relatively intact.

After the war ended, Moil’s near-destruction and reconstruction made it the perfect practical and symbolic place to locate the diplomatic heart of the new League of Five Nations.  Rogent moved its capital to Moil at this time, though many of its government functions (particularly the national level judiciary) remain in Over-Moil.

Due to its location, Moil is a major center of trade on the Floor.  It’s also a common stopping point for airships that are “skimming” — starting on the Ceiling, visiting the Floor, and then returning to the Ceiling, while following a nearly straight-line path.  Many of these voyages are going to, or coming from, Life’s Edge or the unexplored territories.

Culture and Politics

The population of Moil is also somewhat lower than that of Over-Moil — with about 1 million people to Over-Moil’s 1.5 million.

moil_trim

Diplomats’ Circle

The Diplomats’ Circle is a center of activity in Moil, despite being located at the edges.  (This is to allow access to open greenery at the edges of the city, for diplomats who are less comfortable inside the metropolis.)

The ambassadors for the League are nominally independent of Rogent’s internal political parties, although incidents are not unheard-of.  The most locally involved ambassador is Tordurk of clan Ungart, of Mynythe.  He is an intense fan of the relatively new sport known simply as “Tackle,” which is frequently played in the city collosseum.  Kamintel, the Arboran ambassador, occasionally makes a point of supporting the construction of green spaces or designating natural, un-improved areas for public enjoyment.

Many companies also have small offices here and in the nearby Government Quarter, to better petition the local and national government.  Many wealthy and powerful people live in and near the Circle.

Government Quarter

The Government Quarter contains Rogent’s Hall of Ministers, the Mayoral Palace of Moil, Moil’s High Court, the Bureau of Economic Development, and many other government buildings.  It’s also considered a fancy place to live.

Temple District

As the name implies, this is the heart of religion in Moil.  While there are many small temples scattered around the city, there is a major temple here for each of the deities (except for Lolth, who is intensely unpopular in both the League and Life’s Edge).  Even the evil-aligned deities have a presence here, although those temples are understated relative to the others.  (The Temple to Urna-Dolna still faces regular complaints about the corpses hung out front.)  The largest temple to Pun-Pun in the World Within is also here, reflecting the city’s significant kobold population.

The Naytheist Association has made a point of having a large and practical building in the area, in contrast to the fancier temples elsewhere in the district.

The Temple District also includes the Moil School of Healing and Medicine, which is nondenominational and teaches mundane medicine in addition to the magical variety.

There are significant catacombs underneath this area, from before the great fire.

Draconic Quarter

As in many other cities, the Draconic Quarter is the city’s main center of learning.  The University of Moil is most well-known for its legal, business, and economic schools, but the science, magic, and artifice departments are also quite good.  It sometimes faces criticism for emphasizing practical tasks over theoretical underpinnings.

The Wylmarn Archives have a branch library here as well, and open to the public, although it is difficult to obtain permission to borrow books for anyone who is not a Wylmarn citizen.  Like all such libraries, it also has a “private” archive, which is nearly impossible to access.

Most of the those living in and near this quarter are students, scholars, engineers, artists, and other academically-inclined people.

Wizard’s District

The neighboring wizard’s district is of a similar but distinct nature relative to the Draconic Quarter.  It is more focused on applications, with various small business and independently operating artificers, engineers, alchemists, wizards, and others.  There is a heavy focus on magical and scientific research and innovation.

Rent in cheap, in part because the occasional accident tends to result in things getting set on fire or monsters being released by accident or various other minor disasters, everyone once in a while.

Barta’s Assistant has a large store in this district.

Airshipyards

What it sounds like — this is where airships are built and launched.  For convenience, it’s the part of the city at the highest altitude.  It’s also at the edge, with enough open space that new airships can be tested without fear of crashing into Moil proper.  It also includes the related air docks.

High Market

The High Market is an area that is actually at fairly low altitude, near the seashipyards and sea docks.  Only part of it burned during the Forged War; much of the eastern part remains intact from before.  This is the market that carries a large portion of trade goods going in and out of the city, through both the air docks and sea docks.  For convenience, the tax collectors and companies with large shipping interests also have offices here.

Almost all legally obtainable goods from throughout the World Within are available in the High Market.  Some gray market goods may appear as well, but will likely require some official to be bribed to obtain them without difficulty.

Seashipyards

These are also pretty much was they sound like, with a large seaport included.  There is some rivalry with between the airfolk and the seafolk, as they have some competition in the transport business.  Due to the proximity to the water, many seakin (and the handful of merfolk living in Moil) reside in this area.

Both the seashipyards and the airshipyards have some ongoing tensions with the warforged immigrants, who are viewed in many cases as untiring automata who are stealing the jobs of local, hard-working citizens.

Ghost Yards

Neighboring the seashipyards, the Ghost Yards are a heavily haunted area that was not rebuilt after the fire during the Forged War.  The area was one that many people fled to while the city burned, only to be burned over in turn.  There are numerous unhappy ghosts from that era.  Others have gathered in the years since, drawn to the atmosphere of despair.  The area is largely walled off from the rest of the city, for everyone’s safety.

Nobody charges rent, but nobody really wants to live here, either.  A few necromancers and undead manage it, though.

Sanitation

What it sounds like.  While not available in all parts of town, there is a water treatment plant here (one of the first in the World Within) and a considerable amount of plumbing infrastructure, as well as the city dump.

Rent is cheap, but people who live here tend to have a poor sense of smell.

Low Market

The Low Market exists as a counterpoint to the High Market.  While it generally doesn’t have the same high-level luxury goods as are available in the High Market, it does have some exotic goods not available in the High Market, as well as a significant black market in all sorts of things.  The city police will usually look the other way, so long as you pay all the taxes on your purchases.

Additionally, the Low Market takes its name from the fact that only part of it is on ground level.  Most of the shops, and most of the inhabitants, actually stay in the underground levels of old Moil, from centuries before the city burned.  As such, the area is popular with kobolds, orcs, vampires, and others who don’t tolerate sunlight well.

Collosseum

A popular venue for all sorts of events, from Tackle matches to some of the most dramatic bardic concerts ever hosted (at least according to their advertising).

Kobold District

There are two kobold tribes which have a major presence in the district, as well as something of a friendly rivalry with each other.  As kobold tribes tend to be insular, visitors into the areas they control are frequently viewed with suspicion.  The tribe of Kiejurrotel tends towards worship of Pun-Pun over other dieties, and has significant involvement in the local economy as a distributor of raw and processed minerals.  In contrast, Eshesturth is more focused on production and distribution of enchanted goods, and have two small public chapels to Ur-Tel and Barta.

In addition to the two tribes that reside here, there are numerous other inhabitants: many kobolds from tribes based in other places, dragonborn who are more comfortable with draconic races than the rest, and others who are looking for a decent place to live without too much rent or too many questions asked.  The tiny number of Drow who live in the city live here.

Much like the Low Market, there is at least as much activity below ground as there is above it.

Factory District

This is, essentially, what it says on the tin.  Many company factories are located here.  Most people would rather not, due to the smoke many of the factories produced.  That tends to be less of a problem for…

Warforged District

As one might expect, a significant portion of the people living in the Warforged District.  It’s quite ramshackle, and the outskirts fade into a shantytown.  The warforged who live here lack many bodily needs that would make this terribly uncomfortable for them, but the poor factory workers of other races in the area have no such luck.

This was the only place that the Order of the Open Mind could find a landlord willing to rent to them, as such, their small meeting house for Moil is located here.  Due to the fairly neutral position of the warforged and other inhabitants, many undead and necromancers choose to live here.

Isle of Reparations

This is Rogent’s prison for serious offenders with long-term crimes.  They are generally required to remain on the island until either someone pays their fines, or they have served their full sentence.  Since Rogent has a policy against idleness, prisoners are forced to work on crafts that are then sold to support the government.

Outside the City

To the west, the territory is largely agricultural, and dotted with a few small towns between farms.  The Living Earth agricultural company has a major presence.  Hillier (and, later, more mountainous) areas to the north have some significant mining activity.  Closer to Moil, the northern area is a nature preserve.  The nearby southern area is dotted with smaller cities and their own industries.

Recent Events

The date at the start of game is 12 Halli 2000, in early spring.

The most important recent event occurred last month, on 27 Tenn.  On that date, the Ring did something it had never done before: it flickered.  For a moment at noon, a stripe of darkness wrapped itself around the Ring.  While scholars were still struggling to determine the cause of the event, or if there were any historical precedent, a second event occurred on 32 Tenn, worse than the first.  The entire Ring went dark for about thirty seconds, before returning to noon brightness as though nothing had happened.

People started throwing about words like “eclipse,” an ancient term for darkness at midday, and there was panic.  The edge of this has been blunted by the dispatch of nearly every experienced adventuring party in the Five Nations and Life’s Edge in search of explanations and solutions, as well as the fact that the event has not repeated itself since.

Rogent will be holding its next general election at the end of the year, so the preparations for that, including selection of candidates, are beginning now.

Living in Moil

Law in Moil is generally flexible, with permissions on a sliding scale based on how much money you have.

Members of an adventuring company are permitted to wear armor and carry weapons, though they are not permitted to unsheathe said weapons or cast damaging spells in public areas within the confines of the city without a compelling reason.

Most other people are not permitted to carry weapons or cast said spells in public without a permit.

Voting occurs in elections every two years.  (Not all positions are open for elections every year.)  To vote, any citizen of Rogent may contribute money to the election fund of the candidate or candidates whom they support.  Most of the time, various companies make the largest contributions, but strong public campaigns have occasionally made a difference in the outcome.  Foreign contributions are prohibited.

A person is a citizen of Rogent if they are born to at least one parent who is a citizen of Rogent.  An immigrant may become a citizen by filling out a few forms and paying a fee equal to 50,000 GP – (10,000 GP) * (number of years spent living in Rogent), minimum 1000 GP.

There are no organized political parties as such.  However, there are many groups and organizations that have political interests and may work with each other to enact particular policies or elect certain officials.  Many have only local interests.  These include the various religious organizations and the Naytheists; the various companies and corporations; and the various unions, with the Moil dockworker’s union being particularly influential locally.  Most law firms, in contrast, refrain from direct politicking.

Currency in Rogent (and Moil) is the standard gold piece.  Denominations are in units of 10, 5, 1, 0.5 GP, as well as the smaller silver and copper pieces.  Rogent and Wylmar share the same currency.  Banks allow many transactions to be carried out with checks, and there are numerous credit instruments.  (In contrast, Mynythe uses the dragonmark as a separate currency.  1 dragonmark is equal to about twenty gold pieces.  Arbora and Volay do not have independent currencies, and generally operate on either foreign currency or a barter system.)

For most crimes, it’s possible to pay a fine rather than suffer the other consequences.  However, for some crimes, such as premeditated murder, the fine is almost impossibly large (and, for murder, includes the costs of any resurrections to be performed).  Persons who are sent to prison for serious crimes for long periods may spend time on the Isle of Reparations.  The only capital crime in Rogent is First Degree Tax Evasion.

While ressurrection is not uncommon, some people may create legal Do Not Resurrect orders, to prevent an otherwise friendly cleric from wasting time and material.

Moil-Based Adventuring Companies

Due to its central location and easy access to many forms of transportation, Moil is a popular location for adventuring companies to be based.  Some of the more notable ones include:

Directed Solutions

A famous, successful adventuring company, which has been operating out of Moil for the last twenty years.  The group’s unofficial leader is an elven wizard named Pelwethiel.  It’s rumored that they helped prevent another war between Mynythe and Rogent a few years ago, and helped defend Life’s Edge from a particularly nasty infestation of the monstrous variety.

They are currently out of town, having been sent on a mission by the Ambassadors of the League to investigate the recent flickering of the Ring.  Further details are not publicly known.

Mystic Investigation

Somewhat less famous than Directed Solutions, they have been operating out of Moil for the last ten years, and worked in Life’s Edge for a few years prior to that time.  The group, while acting to benefit society in general as their charter requires, also has grandiose plans to recover the four legendary weapons.  They have been unsuccessful so far in that goal, though they have previously retrieved a few artifacts or other important stolen items for various governments and private organizations.

They have been gone for over four months — ostensibly on an expedition to the south pole in search of the Dagger of Midnight, deep in the Drow-held Underdark.  Given that they have been gone for over half a year with no word, people are beginning to suspect that they’re not coming back.

Swordfist

Swordfist has been operating for six or seven years as an adventuring company.  (There was a bit of a hiccup after their first year, so different members of the group count it differently.)  They’re more of a heavy-hitting group than an investigative one.

They’re a bit notorious for being a bit more violent than is perhaps called for, and have paid a few fines to make problems go away.

They have also been sent out of town to investigate the flickering of the Ring, similar to Directed Solutions.

<Your Adventuring Company Here>

You’re small and not well known, but you’ve made it past the critical first six months without anybody dying, and there are a lot fewer dire rats and other pests in Moil than when you started.

On Experience, Conflict, and Death

A few general notes about my campaign philosophy:

Experience will be awarded based on accomplishments more than methods.  Kill the dragon to get the important magic item?  Okay.  Knock it out or poison it instead?  Okay.  Sneak past?  Okay.  (No extra XP for sneaking past going both ways, though.)  Distract the dragon while having part of the party sneak past?  Okay.  Bargain with the dragon for the item?  Okay.

Experience will also come from non-combat actions — diplomatic overtures, investigations, assorted stealth tasks, and so on.

But aside from experience, expect consequence to follow logically from your methods in all cases…

I also expect to give a reward for excellent role-playing.

Since I think it’s a nuisance to have players advance at different rates, everyone will gane XP at the same rate.  (In other words, if you get XP for doing something cool, so do your party members.)

As far as conflict goes, many enemies or antagonists you encounter are likely to quit fighting when they realize they’re going to lose.  The ambassador may withdraw if he realizes your arguments are swaying the crowd, and may attempt to regain face by finding a compromise.  The angry wizard may teleport away if he gets hurt too badly.  And so on.  In some cases, a confrontation like this may also end not when the opponent flees (or dies), but when they surrender, or otherwise give up.  Finally, it’s important to remember that D&D 3.5 does have non-lethal damage rules, which can be dealt by both weaponry and assorted specialized spells.  There may be times when it’s useful to knock somebody out without having to worry if they’re going to bleed out.  (Besides which, unnecessary deaths may be a threat to your adventuring company’s official status.)

Speaking of death: I fully expect character death to happen in this campaign.  There will be some very dangerous encounters that could get very hairy.  That being said, this is also a setting where death, while not cheap, is at least not too expensive.  There are many friendly clerics who have a sufficient “in” with their deities to perform a resurrection spell to bring back a lost party member.  Depending on the cleric and the temple, though, they may ask for compensation for their spent resources, or a favor at some later date.  I expect that, in most cases, if your character dies, it will be an opportunity to choose between sticking with the current character, or building a new one if you are so inclined.

If the party is going up against something that’s way too hard, I’ll try to drop some hints that maybe you should consider a different approach.  (Hint: Do not attempt to evangelize the Great Wyrm Mexorek about the Oneness of Pun-Pun.  He’s probably heard it all before.)

Since your main activities lately have been pest control, especially for dire rats, as a group, the party should decide what your typical tactics have been.  Do you just go in, and hack and slash?  Set up baited traps?  Poisoned baited traps?  Knock out the rats, and release them into the wilds where they belong?  Kill them and sell the corpses to the butchers in the kobold quarter?  Or give the live animals to the alchemist down the street who wants them for gods-know-what purpose?

I’ll be putting up a summary of things in Moil and the ground-level operations of an officially chartered Adventuring Party next, including a map of the city, as my next thing, so you have a better sense of what things look like.

Country Fact Sheets

Rogent

flag_Rogent.png

Capital: Moil
Population
: 300 million (10% halfling, 5% gnomish, rest highly diverse)
Official Language(s): Common (although Halfling and Gnomish are frequently used by major companies)
Government: Democratic Oligarchy
Head of State: Prime Minister Jillian Hilltopple
Climate: Mostly temperate, but there are regions of desert and mountains
Religion(s): Dervit and Halliman are both popular
Adjective form: Rogental

The party’s adventure will start in Rogent, in the capitol city of Moil, a major center of commerce.

Arbora

flag_Arbora.png

Capital: None officially; the largest city is the elven city of Ennever
Population: 
40 million (uncertain, 10% killoren, 10% elven, 5% half-elven, 5% raptoran)
Official Languages: None designated as such, although Sylvan and Elven are the most commonly spoken
Government: Druidic Circles (in wilds) and Local Gerontocracy (in elven cities)
Head of State: High Circle of Hierophants (when needed)
Climate: Mostly temperate, heavily forested in some areas and open plains in others
Religion(s): Meylin is revered in particular.
Adjective form: Arboran

Mynythe Union

flag_Mynythe.png

Capital: Hozidheim
Population:
40 million (80% dwarf, 5% warforged)
Official Languages: Draconic and Dwarven
Government: Racially Limited Representative Democracy
Head of State: Joint between Clanleader Gorkon of clan Tomrel and High Wyrm Hannahet
Climate: Moutainous, with temperate and arctic regions
Religion(s): Meylin is revered in particular.
Adjective form: Mynythe

The population of dragons in Mynythe is small relative to the humanoids, but larger than in any other country.

Free State of Volay

flag_Volay.png

Capital: None officially; the closest thing is the larget commune, Paisa-in-the-Sea
Population: 
80 million (30% raptoran, 30% sea kin, 10% merfolk, 10% human)
Official Languages: None, although Common, Mermish, and Raptoran are all frequently used
Government: Anarchy
Head of State: None; Darbulo of the Merfolk, who leads one of the more successful communes, sometimes does this when it’s necessary
Climate: Tropical
Religion(s): Halliman is particularly revered
Adjective form: Volair

Wylmar

flag_Wylmar.png

Capital: Syeltau
Population: 
160 million (30% illumian, 30% human, 5% half-elven, 5% dragonborn, 5% kobold)
Official Languages: Illumian and Common (though Illumian is preferred)
Government: Dictatorship
Head of State: Tyrant Rellzu Rustveil
Climate: Sub-tropical to tropical, with some regions of desert
Religion(s): Barta is particularly revered
Adjective form: Wylmarn

The university in Wylmar’s capitol (Syeltau University) is famed around the world for its learning and wizardry.

Life’s Edge

flag_LifesEdge.png

Capital: Fortune’s Landing
Population:
20 million (10% each of human, elven, half-elven, halfling, gnome, raptoran, and dwarf; includes undead)
Official Languages: Common, although accommodation is made for many languages
Government: Representative Democracy
Head of State: Prime Minister Shautha
Climate: Temperate
Religion(s): Diverse, with a little extra emphasis on Altenn
Adjective form: Edger (formal); Lifer (derogatory)

Life’s Edge also has the largest half-orc population of any of the organized nations.

Other

There is also a commonly used pirate flag, whose symbology is thought to derive from Urna-Dolna’s holy symbol.

flag_pirate.png

On Alignment

A few notes on alignments:

First, I’m likely to allow, at most, one evil PC.  Maaaaybe two, if two people manage to convince me they’ve got solid characters.  And Chaotic Ridiculous is not an allowed alignment.

In general, the PCs should have sufficiently similar interests that they’re able to work together.  (Bickering, of course,   I expect that the first gaming session will include a lot of final character touches and deciding what your recent history together as the Adventuring Company has been like.

In the world itself, alignment is a known concept.  It’s also known that alignment is more about religion, moral philosophy, and motivations, rather than actions.

As a consequences, while clerics and paladins and the like may Detect Evil and the other alignment axes, it’s considered impolite.  Actually revealing someone else’s alignment is considered downright rude in most places.

Governments are generally well aware that Lawful Good people are capable of causing quite a lot of damage on the road of good intentions, while Chaotic Evil people may be are capable of contributing in positive ways to society (even if they may need extra incentives).  Alignment-tests are not considered proof of guilt or innocence in trials; this is enshrined in law in all Five Nations and Life’s Edge.  (It’s widely believed that being unable to accept differences of philosophy was a contributing factor in the Great Wars and the Apocalypse.)  Alignment tests are usually only considered acceptable as tests for entry to religious orders or certain private organizations.  Paladins who go around Smiting Evil without the victim being a clear threat will get in trouble with the local constabulary.

In terms of alignment, most people are True Neutral or Neutral Good.  Lawful and Chaotic are equally popular.  Truly Evil alignments are (a bit) less common than Neutral or Good (at least, among playable races).  It’s also not uncommon for people to own amulets, rings, or other magic items capable of concealing one’s alignment (especially if Evil-aligned, but even the non-Evil may find this convenient given how relatively common the Detect spells are).

Postive/holy and negative/unholy energy, while typically associated with the Good and Evil alignments respectively, are not strictly tied to them.  However, alignment-affiliated magic items and artifacts (such as, say, a +1 Holy Mace of Smiting) still have the expected negative effects on people whose alignment is opposed to theirs.

Most class restrictions are removed, but not all.  If you’d like to play a class as a non-standard alignment, let me know.  Some (such as for warlock and necromancer) are removed entirely, but the circles of druids are still unlikely to permit someone with too Lawful an alignment to join them, and monks are unlikely to be chaotic.  Paladins always have one of the corner alignments, with flavor changes to match.  If you’re unsure, check with me, and I’ll see if we can work something out.

Finally, only dragons, Outsiders (who might only be constructs of summoning spells anyway, depending on who you ask), and some unintelligent magical creatures have rock-solid alignments.  Otherwise, just because somebody’s a vampire or a lich doesn’t mean they’re evil.

*** Addendum: Having reviewed the Detected <Alignment> spells, it’s important to remember that it takes 3 rounds of staring to get an actual read on whether or not someone is evil.  I’ll also add an addendum house rule to this: For people who are not clerics of an evil (or <alignment>) deity, it takes an extra round to determine their alignment.  Further, intelligent undead do not generally appear as evil.  Finally, I will also allow the Detect Undead spell to be a learnable thing.

Introduction

Hello!

The game scenario is that you’re all adventurers based in the city of Moil in the nation of Rogent.  (Once the characters are gathered, you’ll have to decide on where you hang out, what your group is named, and so forth.)  Most of the experienced adventuring parties are out of town, either dealing with some issues in the south with the Underdark and the evil dragons, or trying to determine why the Ring that lights the World Within has started to flicker occasionally.

You, on the other hand, are mostly hanging out in Moil, dealing with all the serious extermination problems in the city.  It’s been a bit repetitive lately, with mostly lots of dire rats and so forth.  But somebody must have noticed that you do quality work, because you’ve got a letter on fancy paper that looks like a big new job…

***

If you’d like to consider characters, you should consider a 3rd level character of some sort, with the limitations listed on the House Rules page.  (There are also some notes on the Races page, along with all the other history stuff on the other pages.)

Level adjustments are okay up to +2, if you really want to do that.  I’m also planning to add a house-rule quarter-vampire +1 level adjust template, if that’s something that you’d like to play.  (But you’re not all allowed to be part-vampire.  That would just be silly.)

We will also have Michael playing an NPC character (a kobold cleric of Pun-Pun), who will act as party backup or extra healing.  Or maybe be off on some eccentric personal quest at an inconvenient time.  Since this will be a minor character, this shouldn’t disuade you from playing a cleric if you like.

There’s also plenty of time to think about all this, since I suspect that we won’t be starting the game until January 2017 or so.  I’m also still filling in maps and rules for adventuring companies, so stay tuned for all of that.