Story Our story begins in the vast realm of Hanavar, a continent filled with all manner of terrain: forests and jungles and deserts and plains, mountains and caverns and tundra and swamps. And far to the west of Hanavar, off the jungled coasts of Sin'Das Rei, is an Island known as Morolith where the kingdom of Sun Elves reside. They are an intriguing race mixed with logical thinkers, heavenly devouts and delicate warriors, and their hallowed Isle basks in the power of the sun, harnessing it's beautiful rays and worshipping its might. It is a mysterious land with its secrets kept close by the Sun Elves and though their people seem friendly, they are never to be trusted. Their honour is among them and their own, and no one else. Yet somewhere inside you, you know there is so much opportunity to be had on this wonderous island. And that opportunity begs agonisingly close as you cross the Marooned Sea towards The Isle of the Sun, cutting through dangerous waters on the Kamela, a large transport frigate delivering goods and passengers. The boat is travelling to Lightwater, a trading port open to all races and in three days it will dock, and you are sure in your mind that you will be ready. Perhaps this is your chance to become rich as a merchant, or maybe you are here to study the magic, pray to the gods or fight for them. Perhaps you are a servant, chef or squire or quite possible a stowaway too. Soon your real journey will begin and your destiny revealed. (Your story starts on the Kamela at dusk, the sun nowhere in sight as harsh storms cloud the horizon and send waves to rattle your senses. Perhaps you are below deck enjoying the company of the disgruntled crew, taking solitude in your own quarters or even hiding away in a dark corner of the cargo hull. Or maybe you are on deck, watching the heavy storm approach). Area The realm of Hanavar is large, stretching from the northern peaks of Highguard, all the way south the Marshes of Moar. The continent is shaped like a star, each point at the North, South, East and West. To the East is a kingdom time forgot, filled with ancient ruins and secrets not yet unearthed. It is known as only as Iria. To the West is the kingdom of Sin’Das Rei, where the mysterious Drow dwell. But in the center lies ‘The Three Rings’. ‘The Three Rings’ are the collective name for the kingdoms in the middle, known as Darn, Boradith and Terog. They are ruled by three brothers, so that family bonds keep the peace. Though this has not kept true. The focus of our story is the island of Morolith, where the Sun Elves dwell. Through their logic and superstition they have harnessed the powers of the Sun to power their Empire, building an isle so bright, even through day and night. Morolith is known by many names, "The Island of Gold", "Fire Island", "Brightpeak", but it most commonly known as "The Isle of the Sun". Races Drow: Drow are dark elves and have kept themselves hidden away in the jungle cities of Sin’Das Rei. Most stay with their own, but some have sought a different life, one that holds more freedom. However the rest of the world are wary of the Drow, for they are mysterious and fearsome creatures. Most follow the law to letter, and do not stray from the rules set by their leaders, whether Drow or not. Though there have been some exceptions. The Drow have a complicated and aggressive relationship with the Sun Elves. Sun Elves: The Sun Elves are a powerful race, full of great thinkers and lightning quick fighters. They are incredibly sharp in all their pursuits, whether it is knowledge, hunting or something and they are quick to point that out. Vanity and pride are their weaknesses, and they can easily become jealous and petulant if it seems someone is doing better. The prime example of this it the Sun Elves' attitudes towards Boradith, the Human city of crystal. Though logical, the Sun Elves are also very superstitious and believe fully in the power of Sól (the Sun). Again, the Sun Elves have history with the Drow and generally are enemies. Humans: Ah the humans. A formidable group of strength and cunning. Few races have risen to power so quickly in a millennia - yet these folks are smart and organised. The Sun Elves, Drow and Dwarves would be more fearful of their actions, if the Humans weren’t bickering between themselves. Unfortunately, the long held ‘family ruling’ law in The Three Rings is causing problems for the people, as each of the three brothers claims to be the true power of the kingdoms. Both the Sun Elves and Drow are wary of humanity and their thriving abilities. They are an ambitious race and the elves, Sun and Drow alike do not like this. Dwarves: The Dwarves are the explorers of the world. They travel the realm, camping in tents outside towns and cities, selling strange artifacts and showing off their crafting skills. Dwarves tend to be nomadic and have a tendency for violence, which they try to conceal in their inner circles. No one is quite sure where they came from though. Tales tell of them burrowing out from under the ground, but most believe it to be a commoner’s myth. Like the Drow, some have decided to settle and find stability. Due to their short stature they can sometimes be seen as lesser beings, which when mentioned usually enrages them no end. The Elves, Sun and Drow a like are generally quite reserved about any comments, but still think lower of them. However the humans, with their smart mouths, usually have something to say or a joke to insult with. The Dwarves tend to be a little cold and distant towards the humans. Combat Combat uses DICE. You have been warned. Each player will be allowed an action, which will be determined by their character. So wizards will not be limited to one ‘ice’ spell, for example. Instead the player will write the action how they want it to happen, ending their post just before the outcome. If they are ‘successful’ (which I will get to in a moment) then I will write the outcome of their attack. Here are some examples: A wizard casts a fire spell at the enemy, and it is successful so the enemy catches fire (and most likely dies). However there may be consequences to setting the man on fire, maybe he runs into a curtain in panic and starts a larger fire, which now endangers the group. Another example would be that a warrior swings his heavy longsword sideways towards an enemy. He fails, the enemy ducks and his sword lodges deep into a tree, giving the enemy time to strike. So how is an action determined? By a dice. I will roll a dice, and will then write the conclusion of the roll. The first dice in the game will be six sided, and if a 3 or lower is rolled you will fail your action. I will be completely honest with the dice, so if the games against you, it’s just your luck. However items can improve that luck. Specials Items (special armour, swords, trinkets etc.) will give you action points, which will be added to the roll for a higher score. (I will tell you when you have found a special item, you will not start with one). As the game progresses, larger sided dice (10 sided etc.) will be used, which will indicate harder enemies and more sway in the dice rolls. Now for Health. There will be no HP etc. Just three different states of health. ‘Healthy’, ‘Injured’, and ‘Fallen’. Fallen does not mean dead, but you can no longer participate with actions until after the battle is finished, or someone heals you in combat. After any combat, you are allowed recover so that you can enjoy the story, or stay injured if that's what you want for your character. One last point. Actions are not just for combat. In special circumstances where, for example, a door needs to be picked by a thief, they will need to roll the dice. Not on every occasion, but certainly on the important ones. (P.S - Or a large warrior could roll to smash the door down, but you’d bring a lot more attention to yourself!) Classes There are three four classes – Warrior, Wizard, Thief and Ranger. But two of the same class can be different. For instance you could be a huge strong and muscular warrior, able to almost throw men; or you could be a small and agile warrior, cutting down men swift and silently. Wizards can be mages, healers, whatever! It’s up to your description what type they are! But just be fair about it – clearly a small and agile warrior isn’t going to be the strongest. You will also be asked for your main strength and main weakness in your character sheets. While your character will have a range of fantastic abilities, I want their to be an trumping strength and weakness, which I can use to your advantage/disadvantage. So for example if your strength is marksmanship and you are trying to fire an arrow at a bad guy in a fight, I will add a bonus to your roll. Vice versa for weaknesses. It will also impact any out of combat interaction, for example if your weakness is stealth and you write that you pickpocketed a guard, then I will catch you out and the guard will notice. This is not in to affect your gameplay, just to add a bit more dimension to your characters. Be fair with your strengths and weaknesses, they will likely link (I.e monstrous strength should equal low stealth skill, unless you can cleverly argue your point!). Rules 1. I am Cobra Commander... I mean GM. What I say goes, not matter what. No matter what, Mister? That's right Jimmy, no matter what. 2. Be a friendly bear. In game your characters can be as mean to each other as you want (but be prepared for a backlash!). However outside of the game please be nice to one another. If you want to try something with another players character, then PM them first and get their approval. Or better yet, collab with them. Always assume goodwill. 3. Hey Mister, my Mage conjured a Mini-Gun, that's okay right? No Jimmy, that's a dick move and I will slap you upside the head for doing it. No Godmodding. i.e no making your character so uber powerful that he could complete everything by blinking. Understand? Yes Mister! Shut up, Jimmy. 4. One main character only. While I understand some of you will want to create more than one main character, I find the game has much more control when each player only has one. That's not to say you can't create NPCs, which can be used to help develop your characters story and give them some background or relationship with someone. NPCs won't need character sheets. 5. Swearing is allowed. I understand if this offends you, but in my mind swear words are exactly that, just words. I think most people on here are adults and will be okay with this, and those that swear in their work will know what's a good and appropriate level. That doesn't mean you have to swear by the way, there's no pressure here. So I can say damn and darn it, Mister? Jimmy, fuck off. 6. Being as we are all adults (I'm assuming), this means that you will all be willing to compromise. For a good development of character and story, you need to compromise with your fellow players and negotiate who gets the upper hand in a fight, in dialogue or anything else that links character, to name a few examples. Your character can't always be right, and sometimes they can be just downright idiotic in a certain situation, depending on their personality. 7. Collaborate! My favourite rule. Those that know me and my games will understand that collaborating on posts is the key to a good story, and almost always gets super high praise from the other players. Again this links with rule 6, so don't be downheartened if the person you are collaborating with doesn't like that idea. Accept it and move on; perhaps suggest a new idea or a different spin on the previous one. Collaborate! Can I collaborate with you, Mister? No Jimmy, just no. 8. There is no minimum requirement on post lengths. While I prefer a collaborative post, I am more than happy for players to post a quick one liner to keep their stories moving. 9. No controlling other players. Pretty obvious considering rule 2 and 7. If you want to do something with someone else's character then get the approval first. 10. This is not a PG-13. Again, we are adults (still assuming here) and if you want to talk about adult themes then go ahead. At the same time, I don't want to upset the forum in any way, so if you think a post would be over the line then please come to me for approval (and I'll likely escalate to Pheonix ). Am I real, Mister? I'm not entirely sure Jimmy. I did about three lines of cocaine earlier and now my nose is bleeding, so... 11. Read each post - the whole post - carefully. You want people to read and understand your posts, so show the same respect and read theirs. 12. Please respect the tone of the game. Please write realistically and in character. Template - All Profiles must be PM'd to me for approval! Name: Gender: Race: Age: Appearance: Background: Reason for Boarding the Kamela: Class(Warrior, Wizard, Ranger, Thief): Class Type: Main Strength: Main Weakness: Family History (optional): Any Other Information: Phew, that's all folks! -------------------------------------------- Prologue With the glare from Lightwater still visible the hooded stranger thrust his reins faster, forcing his swift brown steed to gallop deeper into Nymeria's Garden, a forest of white oak and golden leaves, and even on this moonless night darkness could not hide him from the light. The air was still and every hoove, clang and breath could be heard through the woodland and the stranger leaned close to his horse's mane, his head shifting left, right and over his shoulder. Preparation for this meet had been meticulous and he was absolutely certain he'd not been followed, doubling back multiple times on his travels. This particular client demanded full confidentially, beyond what had been expected of the stranger before. He made a point never to ride alone for a job, especially into Nymeria's Garden, however after receiving an emerald the size of his fist he found it difficult not to, at the very least, hear this client out. The stranger couldn't help be feel excited. There was such a thrill when tittering close to the edge, knowing that you are seconds away from either death or glory. Maybe he hadn't been careful enough and was followed, maybe there was an ambush waiting up ahead or maybe his client was just a ruse to get him out into the open. A crooked smile crept across his lips as he pondered, always knowing that he lived for these moments, for the ecstasy of the fight, the job, the score. The horse turned off the road just before a small bridge and followed the river down stream. This was a split from the main river that cut East through Nymeria's Garden and meandered slowly towards the Path of the Five. The forest became thicker and the golden leaves merged together, losing their shine and fading silver in the night. The trunks closed in around the stranger, his vision a blur of white and silver, and his body shot forward like a bow string, the horse pulling up abruptly, it's hooves digging furiously into the ground and stopping just short a hollow below. The landscape dipped sharply into the hollow, where one single tree stood in the middle its size massive and its branches covered in blood red leaves. Due to the dip the tree hid everything underneath and the stranger could barely see inside. He cautiously got down off his steed and held the reins tight. The horse was startled. She dragged her hooves and stomped the ground, her heart thumping loudly through her glossy brown coat. She would not calm and no amount of stroking would ease her, even after tenderly rubbing her muzzle and locking eyes. Yet the stranger could not delay and forcibly tied her as best he could to the nearest tree, then turned towards the blood leaf hollow and headed down. It was dark underneath. There were no fireflies here, no break of light from the night sky and no dwindling glare from Lightwater or The Visage. It felt so very cold. The stranger slid down the dried dirt slowly hoping not to alert any unwanted attention, but in that moment he watched as a shape sulked from behind the tree trunk. It moved low and softly, it's shape barely visible in the darkness and it approached, as if stalking prey. The stranger's heart bounced around his chest seeing a wild jaguar, it's coat as black as night, teeth so sharp and eyes of demon red. He went for the dagger on his belt but strangely the creature turned away, heading back towards the tree. It casually crossed behind the trunk, before returning on the other side as a much larger figure. "A little jumpy, aren't we?" The shadowy figure asked. The stranger sprung his hand away from the dagger not wanting to cause offence and stood up and dusted himself off, "I prefer to be jumpy than dead." He grinned. "We don't get cats like that this side of The Marooned Sea. Or Druids for that matter." The Druid stepped out from behind the trunk revealing himself as a Drow the size of a great bear, with dull black skin that matched his long hair, thick brown leather armour adorned with feathers and a handmade necklace crafted with what could only be described as trophies from his previous kills. And of course there were his deep red eyes, hauntingly glowing in the darkness and staring narrowly at the stranger. "So... you found it?" The Druid asked. "I have." The stranger replied. "You have? Do you have it?" "No." "No? Why not!?" The Druid bellowed, thundering his foot down and sending tremors across the ground. "What are you waiting for?" "Two things really." The stranger said rubbing his chin. "One is planning. They've got that thing locked up tighter than a noble priestess's chastity belt and its gonna take more than a few charms to get at it. Now I'm not going to say it can't be done, I just need a little time." "You've had time-" "-to locate it. And that's what I have done." "The taking was implied." The Druid snarled, pacing back and forth. The stranger could have sworn he saw the jaguar's face again. "Implied by you, not me. My instructions were clear. Locate the stone." The stranger said. "Well let me be clear then," the Druid stepped to the stranger in one stride and towered over him, "take the stone and return it to me." "Ahh, now you see that's where thing Two comes in - Payment." The stranger took the fist sized emerald from his robe and tossed it lightly in the air, "these things don't grow on trees you know, and being so good at my job means I'm costly." A sly smile glimmered under his hood. "Hmmpf... get me what I want and you'll believe these things really do grow on trees." The Druid said with a dark chuckle, throwing two more heavy rubies at the stranger's feet. "Now finish this." "As you wish." The stranger responded, but the Druid had already turned and shifted back into a jaguar, his hulking body slipping into a lithe creature of the night. He prowled along the edge of the grove before bouncing up through the blood tree and disappearing completely. The stranger waited a while to ensure there was no other shady business to occur, no underhanded double dealings or other competition for the job. Once a reasonable amount of time had passed and he felt satisfied this score was legitimate, he bent down to the ground and picked up his rubies and smiled.