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Old 07-07-2018, 10:00 PM
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MoonZar MoonZar is offline
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The Empress' Trials


The Empress' Trials

MoonZar Campaign Setting

A level 7 adventure

Application deadline: No more new application accepted, thank you!!!


Game NameThe Empress' Trials
Game SystemPathfinder
ThemeWill the empire and you survive the trials?
FlavourSandbox, warfare, epic fantasy adventures, some political intrigues
Plot Summary
A wind of changeThe world enters the dawn of an age of explorations and innovations. With the emergence of modern galleons, wars are fought on the sea and trade is booming through water, not roads. The first printing press is allowing a faster propagation of more widely distributed ideas. Wise men claim that the world is flat and explorers are trying to prove the point. The first guns and canons are appearing in the military and will change forever how battles are going to be fought in the near future. Wars and death are even more common, with those new tools of destructions available, and occasional plagues. Gods still own the heart of most mortals, but new ways of living are quickly progressing in the population. Kings own most of the riches and lands of the world without challenge but are competing intensively among themselves, the enemies of today could be your friend tomorrow, alliance shifting regularly. The political tensions are volatile and nobody is spared. In this changing world, magic is still very powerful, but more regulated by laws in civilized countries. Many of the calamities of the past were caused by magic and people are fed up of mad wizards.

This is in this context that our story begins, at the end of the Empire golden age...

The fall of an EmpressEmpress of legend Helena Cornaya controls a large empire for three decades. Her sword skills unmatched, her ruthlessness feared, the empire laws are just, but judgment is merciless. She continued the legacy of her ancestors and conquered realms and territories with a mix of wars and diplomacy. Nobles and kings from all over the world pay her respect on a regular basis with gifts, songs, and poems in her honor. The great kingdoms of the empire are not in total harmony, they are kept in check by the Empress iron fist. Most nobles are discreetly playing the great game of cloak and daggers, in competition for lands, riches, and favors from the Empress. The nobles rivalry even occasionally end up in short wars to the great amusement of the Empress until she decides to restore order by lifting a finger and make a few heads rolling.

One day the unthinkable happens when the great empress died in her bedroom, after her fifty years old birthday. Her enemies were numerous, and the number of suspects with a motive are countless, but none are known to have what it take to challenge such an epic warrior still in prime shape. After an investigation led by highly qualified people, there's no clue of what happened that night. The official word to the people was that the Empress couldn't be resurrected by Eryka high priestesses, wishing to enjoy her well deserved peace in heaven. The future of the empire fell on the imperial magistrate that was empowered to act on the will of the Empress. Helena never married and didn't have any child that is officially known to the court, spending most of her life on foreign battlefields. It always has been a source of great concern of who will take over her legacy and prevent the empire to fall into civil war. However, the empress always used this uncertainty to keep her nobles motivated to please her, some said she didn't want a child for that sole reason.

Unlikely persons were designated heirs by the empress. For their safety, the beneficiaries name were kept secret by the magistrate as long as possible, but eventually the list became public. Many nobles and vassals of the empress didn't agree with the chosen list. Some were hoping to get a share of the vast imperial treasure for their years of service, get more lands and titles or even get a shot at the imperial throne. With a target on their back, many heirs were assassinated before they could even make it to the imperial capital for the reading of the will. The survivors were assigned a quest by the empress last wishes, gather the Empire regalia. The soul cleaver, an ancient bastard sword. The eternal crown, crafted by the goddess of truth herself and symbol of the true ruler of the city. The last one is the sceptre of the elemental forces, gift from the ancient elder elemental gods.


What kind of heroes are you?
right-aligned image
For some reason, you encountered the Current PCsheirs on their quest. You never had a relationship with them before and somehow you were accepted by them as protectors or as worthy companions with special talents. You could be from a famous noble family or from humble origin, it's entirely up to you. Helping the heirs of the empress could bring a lot of opportunities or maybe you decided to help them simply for honour and country. In any case, each member of the group is important and will have an important part to play in the story. Nobody is what he appears to be in the great game of cloak and dagger.

1.Name:
2.Age:
3.Class:
4.Race:
5.Physical description: You may post an image, but provide a physical description in words regardless.
6.Personality: Self-explanatory, give an idea of how your character behaves in public and how he's like.
7.Why did you decide to help the heirs?: The heirs are in trouble, many people are trying to kill them and they have little support. As per the Empress' quest, they have to do this on their own and are only allowed to recruit help from strangers they meet during their quest such as you. Please explain why you decided to support and help them to fulfill the Empire trials.
8. Where are you from?: Look at the realms and cities to choose from below.
9.NPC relationship (minimum 2): Create two NPCs that have a relationship to your character. They could be friends, parents, girlfriend, rival, mentor, the drunkard across the street... Ideally, something I could eventually use.
 


10.Background: Talk about your character past, goals, fear, and weakness.

RP Sample: No need, focus more on the other things I'm asking please. Your background story should be enough to show off your writing skills.
Who are the PCs?Rana, Vigilante (Vaerdis)
Dante, Monk (Wodine)
Pacho, Infiltrator (Gotha)
Tatsuo, Oracle (dbaque)

Technical DetailsHere are the character creation rules.

Game System: Pathfinder PFSRD PAIZO ONLY! No third party sources or custom stuff will be allowed.
Posting Frequency: 1/week minimum
Level: 7 (41 000 xp)
Wealth: 20 000 gp - No item can worth more than half your wealth. Item Creation feat doesn't allow to buy item at half price.
XP:Normal
Class: Core, Base, Hybrid and Unchained. No more than two classes in your character career
Archetype: One per class maximum
Races: Core. There are many realms in the empire, and some noble families are not humans.
Alignment: No evil.
Point Buy: 25 points.
HP: Full at level 1. Each hit die thereafter gives average roll. (e.g. d4 hit die gives 2 HP, d6 gives 3, d8 gives 4, d10 gives 5, and d12 gives 6.)
Traits: You may select maximum two. No flaws.
Alternate Racial Traits: None allowed
Firearms: Emerging (Advanced firearms doesn't exist). Firearms can only fire three-time maximum per round because of technical limitation.
Religions: Zar Religions
House rules: We are going to use the background skills.


More guidelinesHere's a few thoughts from the DM.
  • This is a sandbox environment, I expect a lot of initiative from the party. Sometime the path will be clear, but on other occasions, you have to decide what you want to do as a party.
  • Don't publish character sheet in your application before you are accepted!!! I won't look at it.
  • Pathfinder gives us a lot of options, which is cool but it's an unperfect system in so many ways. I reserve myself the right to interpret or change anything in the system to my judgment. It's okay to have a discussion about it, but when I make a decision, let's move on. You have to trust me that I'm not out there to kill your character without mercy.
  • If it becomes obvious during the campaign that your build is ridiculously too strong in comparison to the other players, I will ask you to change it. By the way, the obsession to create the most violent build, only lead to more violent monsters.


Kingdoms and citiesPlease find latest information about kingdoms and cities here: https://www.rpgcrossing.com/showthread.php?t=183579

Empress Helena Cornaya - RIP
 

Applications
 

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Last edited by MoonZar; 09-10-2019 at 03:11 PM.
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  #2  
Old 07-07-2018, 10:00 PM
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MoonZar MoonZar is offline
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Please find latest information about kingdoms and cities here: https://www.rpgcrossing.com/showthread.php?t=183579

Last edited by MoonZar; 09-03-2019 at 07:34 AM.
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Old 07-07-2018, 11:16 PM
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That didn't take long, looks awesome Moonzar
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Old 07-07-2018, 11:47 PM
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Wow, Well done Moon. So polished. So rich. You always do great work Moon. A pleasure.
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"All that is gold does not glitter/not all those who wander are lost; The old that is strong does not wither/deep roots are not reached by the Frost.
From the ashes a fire shall be woken/a light in the shadows shall spring; Renewed shall be blade that was broken/the crownless again shall be King."

Last edited by WhiteStag; 07-07-2018 at 11:52 PM.
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Old 07-08-2018, 12:41 AM
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What a fantastic premise! Posting interest

App
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Olesia Elizaveta Knox

Marchioness of Ebonvale


Age: 25
Class: Paladin (Oath of Vengeance)
Race: Human
Alignment: LG
Diety: Eryka

Appearance: Olesia has very little interest vested in her outward appearance, as much of her time is spent praying and contemplating at Eryka’s temple vigil. Despite having soft feminine features and a splash of light freckles across her nose, the newly-initiated paladin keeps her silky blond hair short and closely cropped--a necessary measure, not only for practicality's sake, but also to appear more formidable in the face of her adversaries. Standing at 5’6, built strong and leanly hewn from tempered years forged in training, Olesia has the grace-kissed movement of a swan both in and outside battle. Though her voice is soft-spoken and generally calm, Olesia’s mannerisms range from stoic to sharp, reflecting a life of strict discipline. With a cold hawkish glare of amber hue, rarely does anything amiss escape her attention.

Though of nobility and a debuted Lady of Petrenia’s Court, Olesia shuns fine bejeweled gowns over stern military attire. Regardless of the occasion, she is not without her broad mantle, polished pauldons, and elaborate chest plate draped in a cape of crisp white. A gleaming longsword and shield bearing the Knox crest, twin phoenixes in perpetual death and rebirth, are her preferred weapons of choice. Often at odds with Xadanyel’s followers despite their political might, Olesia fearlessly represents both the honor of her prestigious house and the goddess of courage.

Personality: Every day Olesia must prove her devotion, whether it be to her illustrious father or to her goddess. For most, the weight of carrying the family mantle may feel overwhelming, but Olesia marches forward in silent obedience. Yet, inwardly, she is far from satisfied having a backseat view of her own life. To Essie, as a few select friends may call her, Duty trumps everything else. Should she even falter, the hard won legacy of her family that was built upon bloody battlefields and mountains of corpses will have all been for naught. Above all, she is one of a minority at Court who hold to the lawful truth of Eryka. They must shine where darkness pervades, lest the rest of Athenya be swallowed in the fanaticism of Xadanyel’s wars.

When the paladin is not praying or polishing her sword, Olesia is likely racing on horseback across the sprawling coasts and moors surrounding the Capital. Often she grapples with her own willful desire for more, secretly longing for the sea and a new life beyond the cold vestiges of Patrenia. She maintains very few close relationships apart from her childhood friend, Selma Reithgard. Though it is often hard for her to lift a smile, Olesia has boundless faith that her life’s purpose will someday come swinging around the corner.

Heritage: Olesia is the sole child and heiress of the indomitable Percival Knox, Duke of Ebonvale and famed Merchant of War. Her mother, Lady Sofia of Valor, tragically took her own life shortly after Olesia was born. The loss so rattled her father that he delved headfirst into his faith, vowing never to take another bride. Since then, he has raised his daughter with the same heavy-handed zeal.

Ebonvale is located to the south of Patrenia along the winding river that cuts through Kalvalas. Composed of vast, fertile farmland that produce more than half the country’s food stuffs, these lands were awarded to House Knox gradually over several generations of infighting amongst the fabled River Lords.

House Knox is proud of its deep roots within Athenya’s military tradition. They have always faithfully served when there was great need, extolling the virtues of Eryka to the godless and heretical when given the opportunity. In recent decades, Percival himself supplied Petrenia’s navy from his own stores and led his own fleet during the conquest of Elenya. His direct involvement sealed House Knox’s place at Petrenia’s Court, no longer seen as the mere son of warmongering tyrants. Having finally united the River-Lands, His landholdings had grown so large that he was granted the title Duke of Ebonvale. Yet, a young man at the time and bitten by wanderlust, Percival embraced the merchant’s life as a cunning means to exponentially increase their wealth. Dabbling mainly in the weapons trade, Percival succeeded far beyond anyone's expectations due to his keen business sense—though in truth it had everything to do with buying out the competition. House Knox is now widely renowned as an exporter of arms, ships, and machines of War. Thanks to all his daring endeavors, Olesia is now one of the most eligible women alive.

The Trials: It was pure madness when word first broke. Olesia was just as baffled as everyone at Court as to why the Empress named her among the heirs. Surely it has something to do with Percival’s ambitions, probably outright buying her spot on the list! The fact that this could all be one of his schemes infuriates her, as she can’t find even a sliver of evidence that ties her with Empress Helena.



Background:

 


 







Traits: Benefit(s): Whenever you strike the last creature that damaged you in the past 24 hours, you gain a +1 trait bonus on damage rolls against that creature.Vengeful , Benefit(s): You may cast light once per day as a spell-like ability (caster level 1st), and you begin play with a masterwork longsword. In addition, whenever light is cast upon this sword, the radius of light and its duration is doubled.Chosen One

NPCs:

 


 


 


 


 


PC Relationships:

 


 


 


 


 


 


WIP




Last edited by JReid; 07-29-2018 at 04:20 PM.
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Old 07-08-2018, 04:01 AM
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Some interest with both a concern and a question.

Concern: on the maps given I could not find the cities of Valkara, Birone and Gardalia to use as locational reference.

Question: The application information alluded to the possibility of some character being of imperial descent (from the empress) are there specific rules or constraints on choosing to be a royal or imperial background? For example, only known, vetted persons having such a background or significant worth in application writing.
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Old 07-08-2018, 04:13 AM
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An impressive pitch! Posting interest.

I might make a warrior Monk from the Matuzala Sultanate. You mentioned that PCs could choose your established NPCs as parents. If my character's mother was Kamilah Motallebzadeh, who would her father/other mother be?

Last edited by Kaiya; 07-08-2018 at 04:14 AM.
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Old 07-08-2018, 05:50 AM
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MoonZar MoonZar is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kaiya View Post
An impressive pitch! Posting interest.

I might make a warrior Monk from the Matuzala Sultanate. You mentioned that PCs could choose your established NPCs as parents. If my character's mother was Kamilah Motallebzadeh, who would her father/other mother be?
Welcome Kaiya!

You can decide who is your characterís father and create him.

Cheers,
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HoF 2019 is open, please consider Empire's Trials. An epic story of intrigues and war!

I'm moving abroad in twi weeks. Packing the whole family and drama!
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Old 07-08-2018, 05:54 AM
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MoonZar MoonZar is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JReid View Post
What a fantastic premise! Posting interest
Welcome JReid!
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HoF 2019 is open, please consider Empire's Trials. An epic story of intrigues and war!

I'm moving abroad in twi weeks. Packing the whole family and drama!
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Old 07-08-2018, 05:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OneDarkness View Post
That didn't take long, looks awesome Moonzar
My other campaign is about to finish after four years. So now its the time.
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HoF 2019 is open, please consider Empire's Trials. An epic story of intrigues and war!

I'm moving abroad in twi weeks. Packing the whole family and drama!
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Old 07-08-2018, 06:02 AM
Kaiya Kaiya is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MoonZar View Post
Welcome Kaiya!

You can decide who is your characterís father and create him.
Will do. Can the other parent be a mother instead? And if so, does magic exist to let a PC be their biological child?
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Old 07-08-2018, 06:20 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kaiya View Post
Will do. Can the other parent be a mother instead? And if so, does magic exist to let a PC be their biological child?
Presumably. If nothing else, there's Alter Self.
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Old 07-08-2018, 06:21 AM
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Interest... >.>
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Old 07-08-2018, 06:30 AM
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I've moved on to a new character concept, found HERE.





The following is definitely unfinished, and may not be the character I go with. I just had the idea and had some fun fleshing it out. I love the nuances of the world you've created here Moonzar.

 

Last edited by TheMystic; 07-12-2018 at 02:04 PM.
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Old 07-08-2018, 07:52 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kaiya View Post
Will do. Can the other parent be a mother instead? And if so, does magic exist to let a PC be their biological child?
Hi Kaiya -

Cloning magic is rare but does exist, however, a clone won’t have been selected as Empress’ heirs.

A character could have been raised by a couple of women but must have a biological father. He can be unknown. The NPCs in the kingdom's list have a partner of the opposite sex, you can create a Countess or Baroness from any of those countries. Doesn’t matter the rank of the parents since everybody has an equal chance on the will, if it's ever read.

Cheers,
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HoF 2019 is open, please consider Empire's Trials. An epic story of intrigues and war!

I'm moving abroad in twi weeks. Packing the whole family and drama!

Last edited by MoonZar; 07-08-2018 at 08:32 AM.
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