Campaign of the Month: January 2008
A Deadly Affair
Houses and Affiliations
Characters in this game can belong to any of a number of significant organizations within the realm, from noble houses to powerful guilds to mystic societies. Players will have the opportunity to design their own affiliations if they desire, or to select from the handful of pre-made affiliations included in this document.
Affiliation Design (still subject to updates)
Each affiliation will have some combination of the following properties (or others subject to approval). The total point value for these properties must be six or less:
- Proficiency with a martial weapon or familiarity with an exotic weapon = 2 points
- One general or metamagic feat = 4 points
- One skill always in-class = 2 points
- +1 to one save or +2 to one skill = 3 points
- +1 to one skill or +1 conditional bonus to one save = 2 point
- -1 to one save or -2 to one skill = -1 point
- Each point of Wealth = 1 point (maximum 4)
Sample Affiliations – stat blocks not valid on all affiliations due to point cost changes
House Murra – this powerful noble family can trace its bloodline all the way back to an aristocrat in the days of Leistos. Their zeal for maintaining the purity of their noble line has led to a few generations of inbreeding when no ‘suitable’ marriage could be found. As a result, they are often frail and given to having ‘thin’ blood. Much of their enduring power comes from their reputed skill with magic, and a history of producing skilled sorcerers within their family. As a family reputed for sorcery, they rarely wear heavy armors even in combat, so they train with the slender elven blades more apt to flourishes and un-armored duels. Seat of power: Blackwash
Colors/Standard: Black and Green/A Green Flame on Black.
Stats: -1 to Fortitude Saves, Knowledge (Arcana) always in class, Rapier Proficiency, Wealth 4
House Gristuk – a truly ancient Troll house, this is the ruling house of one of the greatest Troll nations, whose roots run back to the days of Antiri’s council of kings. It was Gristuk, after whom the house is named, that hunted down and killed most of the adventurers responsible for the death of Antiri. For this, the council awarded him lands, which over the centuries have been expanded into a nation ruled by his descendants. In keeping with their culture, great warriors are often promoted into the family, and may even become the head of it under the right circumstances. Children of this house are expected to grow into great warriors, and are often subjected to terrible treatment to prove their toughness. To this family, the honor of the warrior is almost as important as his martial skill.
Race: Troll, Orc, or Half-Orc
Colors/Standard: Grey and Yellow/Four Wolves on Yellow.
Stats: +1 Fortitude Saves ( +2 versus shock), -2 Bluff, Wealth 4
House Tollek – an ancient and powerful house that once held the throne of Archos, they trace their lineage to one of the clan chiefs of Arkuz. More than three centuries ago, the Tollek king passed his crown to a distant cousin, ending the line of royal Tolleks. Since then, their influence and power have slowly declined, and though they try to hide it, much of their old wealth is spent and gone. They’ve turned to other, sometimes nefarious means to maintain their influence, and even managed to expand their power in foreign trade through some advantageous marriages. Seat of power: Laketon
Race: Human, Half-Orc, or Half-Elf
Colors/Standard: Gold and Blue/A Golden Sun on Blue
Stats: Bluff always in class, +2 Gather Information, Wealth 2
House Mallefoot – a minor house of the southern hills recently catapulted to national prominence and influence, their new wealth comes from a number of rich gold mines recently revealed on their lands. They kept the mines secret for almost a century, successfully mining them and stockpiling the gold until they could use it to expand their influence. A minor family granted lands less than two centuries ago, they’ve bought up enough territory to be granted higher titles by the king. They’ve risen so high so fast, in fact, that they’ve earned the enmity of most other major families, particularly the older ones. This family has enough gold to buy whatever influence money can manage, but that often isn’t enough. Their lack of familiarity with the major players often hampers them in court interactions, especially as they are represented further from their ancestral home. Seat of power: Slate Hold
Colors/Standard: Black and Green/An Oak Tree on a Hill on Black
Stats: -2 Knowledge (Nobility/Heraldry), +2 Bluff, Wealth 4
House Deepwell – a large house whose ancestral seat controls the largest trading port in Archos, the Deepwells actually control very little land, and most of their wealth comes from a number of shrewd trade arrangements. The Deepwells expertise as sailors is undisputed and for the last several generations the Lord Admiral of the King’s Navy has been a Deepwell. The family’s line dates back to the Dark Age, and some scholars believe they may descend from one of the first Clan Chiefs to venture south of the Divide after the fall of Leistos. In the last few centuries, several prominent members of this house have engaged in ritual magic to adapt themselves to the Sea. Most of the family spends a great deal of time out to Sea, and so is unaccustomed to the politics of court. Seat of power: Deepwell
Race: Human, Water Genasi
Colors/Standard: Black, White and Blue/A Black Ship with White Sails on Blue Waves
Stats: +2 Profession (Sailor or Shipwright), +2 Knowledge (Geography) -2 Sense Motive, Wealth 3.
The Dreamseekers – a secretive organization of monks, arcanists, and clerics, Dreamseekers are often found among the advisors of powerful nobles and any others that can afford the knowledge they have to offer. They claim to be the heirs to the secrets of the Dreaming passed down from the gnomish cabal that wrought the destruction of Leistos. Most of them lead ascetic lives devoted to study and meditation, using the wealth their advice can attract to fund further research or training.
Race: Any except Elves or Pit’Hai
Stats: +1 to all saves while in the Dreaming, Wealth 1, +2 Concentration.
The University of the Archmage – one of the only institutes of higher education, this edifice instructs the gifted in the use of arcane magic – for a significant fee. The staff of the university are invariably former graduates or extraordinarily gifted wizards or sorcerers. Many of them use the university as their own research facilities, pursuing their own interests, and occasionally sharing their results with their peers. This tendency to enjoy a solitary lifestyle can make it difficult for them to understand people at times. Most major cities throughout Archos have a Tower of the Archmage, and one has been established in Pintare as well.
Colors/Standard: White and Purple/A White Tower on Purple
Stats: -2 Sense Motive, +2 Knowledge (Arcana), Wealth 2, -5% Magic Item cost.
The Order of the Falcon – a chivalrous order of knights in Archos whose ranks are mostly drawn from the youngest sons of noble houses, though a few daughters have joined their ranks as well. The highest members of the order are the personal guard of the king, and other members serve a wide variety of functions throughout the kingdom. They are renowned for their superior horsemanship and easily recognized by their blue and white armor and capes. Members of the Order are expected to conduct themselves as though always in the service of the king, and have been known to use that connection to their own advantage.
Colors/Standard: Blue and White/A Blue Falcon on White
Stats: +2 Ride, +2 Knowledge (Nobility/Heraldry), Wealth 2.
The Church of the Trinity – one of the largest religions in the world, the Church of the Trinity is particularly popular on the coast and with sailors. The priests (not necessarily Clerics) of the Church of the Trinity usually work together in threes, each assuming one of the aspects of the god. The worship of the Trinity began some time after the fall of Leistos, during the dark age, but has spread quickly across much of the globe. They take in huge amounts of donations, and own vast tracts of land given as offerings by various nobles throughout the generations, though individual priests have very limited access to this tremendous wealth.
Colors/Standard: None/A Trident with three silk banners
Stats: +2 Knowledge (Religion), Martial Weapon Proficiency (Trident), Wealth 2.