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Thread: Osoerde

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    Senior Member ausrick's Avatar
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    Osoerde

    The PC's in my campaign are trapesing through Roesone and Ghoere right now, started out in Aerenwe, and are soon to be headed to Osoerde. Usually when they stay in a town they try to gather a lot of local lore, what happens here, what lives there, rumors and such. I have read that document on the nobility of Osoerde, but I'm really looking for some good Players Secrets kind of ideas. Can any of you share with me from your campaigns some interesting flavor, tidbits, or adventure hooks for Osoerde? Also how you fleshed out the Raenech/Moergan conflict. That seems like it could be such a wonderful gem that I'm afraid to mine it from scratch as my hands might blemish it. (Kind of like blank page block to a writer or white canvas phobia to a painter.) Any ideas would be fun and downright appreciated.
    Regards,
    Ausrick

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    I am currently running a game set in Aerenwe / Osoerde the following is a brief synopsis of the campaign background.

    In my campaign William is hiding out in Aerenwe, with the blessing of the Swordwraith herself, using it as a launching point for trips into Osoerde. The Swordwraith has not publicly supported William with more then vocal condemnation of Jaison Raenack’s actions, and keeps it very quiet that she supports William directly with supplies. From her point of view, she makes a friend of William, she potentially keeps Osoerde off balance, and she has no doubt that given the chance Jaison would be more then willing to invade Aerenwe. At the end of the day it’s a win-win situation for her on all counts.

    Osoerde and more specifically Jaison Raenack uses the power of a blooded wizard (Umbrus by name) to hold sway over the sources of Osoerde. It is a tentative relationship at best, and it’s a good thing for Jaison that Umbrus has no real interest in the headaches of running a country because Umbrus is also a necromancer of some power (9th level Azrai blooded wizard).

    Not everyone is a ardent supporter of Jaison, in fact were it not for his ‘Dark Knights’ William would have long ago taken back control of Osoerde from Jaison. These Dark Knights command the military of Osoerde with a firm hand, no one ever sees the faces of these ‘Knights’, but their power is ever present. They do not fatigue, they have no need for rest, and they follow Jaison’s commands with a fanatic disregard for their own safety. The Knights only number around 200 in total; however each unit is commanded by one of these tireless deadly men.

    As you can no doubt guess, these Knights are the creation of Umbrus using a combination of realm magic and an ancient artifact of necromantic power called the cauldron of souls. The cauldron of souls takes a healthy person, who is put inside the cauldron and turns them into undead servants of the wizard reciting a ritual spanning many hours. The entire time the poor soul in the cauldron is tortured with unimaginable pain. Once the ritual is complete a new creature steps out of the cauldron ready to serve, with all the memories of the victim.

    Thankfully Umbrus does not have a firm understanding of the full capabilities of the cauldron and is much like a child struggling with its powers. Umbrus has all the ability and none of the drive to be one of the most powerful wizards in Cerilia, he’s found his little chunk of the world and is perfectly happy to keep it that way. He has no inclination for world conquest, that is Jaison’s thing, and if Umbrus has any say in the matter nothing will ever come of that upstarts ambitions. Umbrus retains few illusions regarding his power and is fully aware that there are bigger fish out there; he has no interest in becoming one of those bigger fish’s snacks. Just maybe if he keeps his head down he can enjoy some of the perks of wealth, without the associated risks.

    The last ‘player’ if you want to call him that, in the Osoerde power struggle is one of William’s childhood companions, Jona. Jona was a young man of exceptional potential, but devoutly loyal to William and blooded to boot. It was predicted that he would become one of the greatest swordsman Osoerde had ever seen. Publicly little is known of what happened to Jona after Jaison assumed power, however privately he became one of the first successful experiments with the Cauldron of Souls, but what Umbrus didn’t count on, was the effect that Jona’s blooded heritage would have on the process. All Umbrus saw was the potential of a blooded scion under his direct control, he got what he wanted, but as the saying goes, be careful what you wish for, you just may get it. Jona became known as the Red Knight and is the only person to step forth from the cauldron with any semblance of his former self intact. Maybe it had something to do with his supernatural willpower, but in those few hours in the cauldron Jona reached his potential and surpassed it (he is a 17th level Fighter, next to the gorgon one of the strongest fighters in my game). He became known and feared very quickly for his speed and skill with almost any weapon, everything Umbrus hoped for and more.

    The twist is, Jona has free will of a sort and is no friend of Jaison or Umbrus. Jaison still has to follow Umbrus’s direct commands; however he can choose how to fulfill the letter of those commands, and is not bound by the spirit or intention of those commands in anyway. Even a direct command he has the ability to delay fulfilling temporarily, however he is always forced to fulfill them in the end. Much to Umbrus’s dismay, he has the perfect tool, and knows that it is only held in check by a hair. This is his biggest success in life, and his biggest failure.

    With the situation as it is, it allows a huge amount of opportunity for politics and intrigue. My PC’s have encountered The Red Knight once already and were confused, the stories around him are generally gruesome and deadly, however they were spared and sent on their way with little more then a cryptic warning that “The circumstances of our next encounter may not bode so well for you, and that makes me sad.” In that situation Umbrus’s commands had only been to investigate the cause of the problems Osoerde was having and do something about it. Jona did something about it, just not what Umbrus was expecting.

    From an outsiders view point, Jaison has the power and the obvious inclination to expand his power base into Roesone, Ghoere, or Aerenwe. But inexplicably he stays inside his own borders. The most intense antagonism is currently with Aerenwe, and were it not for the Berendor River between the two countries clashes would be far more common then they currently are.

    Obviously the Swordwraith wants to know what Jaison is up to, all of her advisors tell her to expect war with Osoerde within the year, however they have been saying this now for several years with no escalation of hostility, and the constant state of alertness (enlarged standing armies) is starting to hurt her coffers, combine this with the people of Aerenwe’s dislike of warfare in general she wants answers and she wants them yesterday.

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    Senior Member ausrick's Avatar
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    Thanks Jsharon, That helps give me a few ideas.

    Hey, does anybody know exactly what Jaisen's relationship is with the IHH? I wouldn't imagine the IHH would condone his actions, or would they? Also, if they didn't back Jaison, it seems to me the IHH is a rather big player and they could make his life Miserable if they wanted to. Also how fierce is the battle between the IHH and the CSH?

    Speaking of IHH, it was my understanding that they were a LG temple but in the Players Secrets of Roesone it says their high prefect keeps urging that nation and Osoerde to go to war with Aerenwe because Aerenwe is predominately ETN (Which I thought was also a good aligned temple.) Now I know that Ideologies don't always box up neatly into black and white lines, but there just seems to be more going on here that would spur such animosity. Anybody have anything juicy to say about that?
    Regards,
    Ausrick

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    from what i can gather it is perfectly ok to go to war with anyone providing your following the dictates of your god. In the old 2E Endier Players secrets book it says that the Knights of Haelyn the W.I.T has cannot raise a weapon against another member of the faith. Historically they've found ways around this stricture when a superior prelate declares a rival temple to be heretical.

    Taking this in mind, alignment doesn't really mean you cannot war against those that are deemed "good" but you have to do so with the backing of your god.

    Manty

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    Hmmm...Osoerde...lots of potential wrapped up in that one little country.

    Its been a while since I've run my Birthright campaign so I am a little rusty on some of the details I developed, but here are some the things I can remember.

    In my game, the PCs are not regents, though they interact with people at that level on a regular basis. They were originally based out of Coeranys and fairly early on the took an interest in the tyranical reign of the usurper Duke of Osoerde. One of the PCs was an exiled son of the previous duke's other lieutenant and another was a follower of Cuireican (sp?) but not a member of the Church of Storms Height in Osoerde.

    The exact details of how Jaisin Raenech came to power I never revealed to the players, but they did know that he did it with the aid and support of his cousin Wincae Raenech, the head of the Church of Storms Height. Jaisin Raenech had purged his minor nobility several times, replacing most of them with loyal if not overly competant younger sons and opportunists.

    It made for a kind of bizzare situation where a very lawful evil tyrant is governing a realm with the active assistance of the church of a chaotic god. I cast this as an additonal reason that the Church of Storm's Height was highly divided in their loyalties. The dominant faction supported Raenech and tended to be more interested in maintaining temporal power and emphasized the conflict for conflict's sake aspects of their faith. The less powerful faction supported Moergen as the rightful duke and the less militant, more "bringer of change" side of their faith. The IHH was still present because it was popular with the upper class and had largely taken a hands off stance. Officially they never sanctioned Raenech, but they never came out against him since they didn't want to be thrown out of the country or precipitate open war with Osoerde.

    As far as what actually happened in my game, the PCs encountered the loyalist resistance in eastern Osoerde several times on andventures and quickly decided they favored Moergen's faction. Eventually, they were called upon by one of the resistance leaders to help him rescue a group of resistance fighters who had been captured. Neither the PCs nor the ducal troops that captured the resistance fighters realized that one of them was William Moergen. The PCs tracked the troops back to the noble manor of the Duke's chief lieutenant and snuck into the manor thanks to it having previously belonged to the exiled PC's family. Once inside, they rescued William Moergen and discovered that Jaisin and Wincae Raenech had arrived to interrogate the prisoners personally.

    Taking their chances, the PCs were able to capture the Raenech cousins, kill the duke's senior lieutenant and barely escape into the backlands of Osoerde. Once free of their pursuers, they forced Wincae Raenech to perform the ritual divesting Jaisin of his regency over Osoerde's provinces and returning 'ownership' of them to William Moergen. The country broke into open civil war as William Moergen and various others scrambled to take power in the vacuum left by Jaisin's divestiture. William Moergen had control of the province ratings themselves but controlled almost none of the law holdings. Several of Raenech's stronger minions made grabs for their areas or simply tried to carry away everything of value they could get their hands on. In the confusion Jaisin Raenech escaped (and was soon killed by one of previous underlings).

    When the campaign was paused due to a player leaving the country was in pretty bad shape. William Moergen had pretty decent control of eastern two provinces and was starting to build an army and trying to gain the aid of Elinie, Coeranys and the IHH. Jaesen Raenech's sister had some control over the western end of the country. The Church of Storm's Height (still under Wincae who had managed to get away form the PCs as well) had seized the capitol and was 'holding it for the rightful Duke'. Goere had moved troops into a major town on the Osoerde-Goere border 'to preserve the peace' and protect its merchant interests and was shifting troops into the area in anticipation of extending their protection all the way to the coast. The dwarven guild from Baruk-Ahzik basically went turtle but was lending quiet support to Moergen.
    Last edited by BrennanHawkwood; 11-10-2005 at 08:41 PM.

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    Senior Member ausrick's Avatar
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    Thanks Manty,

    It just makes me wonder what is it about the ETN that would get under High Prefect Hubaere Armiendin's skin so much as to urge two nations into war. I would think he would be more concerned with the OIT. I mean all sorts of roleplaying options abound, just wondered if anybody had some ideas.

    And still about Jaison Raenech, PSoRoesone says that the High prefect "enjoys good relations with all monarchs whose subjects follow his faith and rarely feels the need to flex the temple's muscle in internal affairs." So maybe to venture a guess since William Moergan was associated with the CSH the IHH may have turned a blind eye to Jaison's ambitions and actually been the temple to invest him if he supported the IHH's bid in Osoerde? plausable?
    Regards,
    Ausrick

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    Senior Member ausrick's Avatar
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    Thanks Bennan, that is a good plot.


    Another thing came to mind, If you are familiar with the two versions of Wincae (one is LE with a 30-something Bloodline, the other print is a CG with an 18 bloodline) If I chose the latter of the Raenechs (assuming no Multi personality disorder ) It could be possible that he felt obligated by family ties to help Jaison, but in doing so probably regretted it later and maybe even incurred a loss in regency because of it. (18 seems a little low for a major bloodline and a CG character helping a LE character to usurp the throne from a rightful CG heir and oppress the populous sounds like grounds for loss of regency). Now he might try to help Moergan who he knows he has wronged, but his parishoners are divided, those who fall on the side of his previous actions, and those who follow his new stance. a great captain could rise up from them and even split his church. Sound interesting or possible/plausible?
    Regards,
    Ausrick

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    Senior Member Thomas_Percy's Avatar
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    1. Raenech is a potential (maybe secret) vassal od Ghoere.
    2. Will Moergen is a similiar character as Randal Morn from FR Daggerdale. So you can use AD&D adventure trilogy
    http://www.rpgnow.com/product_info.php?products_id=875&
    http://www.rpgnow.com/product_info.php?products_id=874&
    http://www.rpgnow.com/product_info.php?products_id=877&

    & Doom of Daggerdale:
    http://www.rpgnow.com/product_info.php?products_id=865&

    I DMed it in 3e, maybe i have some conversion (but 3e), if you are interested.

    3. "Blood of Four Kings" Brt AD&D adventure is good for William Moergen, too.
    Last edited by Thomas_Percy; 11-10-2005 at 10:17 PM.

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    Birthright Developer irdeggman's Avatar
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    Several people seem to have read that the prefect of the Church of Storm’s Height is Jaison Raenech’s cousin.



    Note the spelling of the names:



    Ruins of Empire:



    Wincae Raehech



    Jaison Raenech



    That is only place where Wincae is mentioned.



    The Book of Priestcraft states that as many members of the CSH follow the rightful ruler as do the throne’s usurper.



    IMO they are not related and the spelling is intentionally different.



    In my campaign there was the following PCs:



    Regent of Roesone (very interesting background on his story but not enough time to go into it at the moment). (L.G.)



    Regent of the IHH. (N. G.)



    Guilder in Roesone and surrounding areas (C.G.) {Part of a triad that took over Endier following the “mysterious” death of Kalien.



    Paladin of Cuiraécen (had a few temple holdings in Osoerde).



    Every PC had some “secret” in their past. The Paladin’s was that his prefect (Wincae) sent him to Roesone to provide assistance to the new regent. In the letter that was delivered to the regent the real reason was made clear. The paladin had actually been rather forceful in his preaching against Jaison and so Wincae sent him to Roesone for his own protection.



    IMO it makes more sense for the CSH to be “good” aligned church since there needs to be some sort of “voice” supporting Moergen in Osoerde and with the insertion of the One True Church of Vosgaard they are more in a position to oppose them.



    Anyway part of the storyline was that Diirk Watershold was an ally of Moergen and actually owed him a life debt. This explained the strong presence of the dwarven guilds in the lands.



    One plot line had the paladin when it was time to receive his mount (this was a 2nd ed game) face a dilemma. Both his sister and Moergen were in dire danger. He had to choose which one to help since he couldn’t accomplish both tasks. What the player didn’t know was if he chose his sister (a more selfish goal) he would get a normal mount and Moergen would most likely have died (hadn’t rolled the randomness factor but it wouldn’t have been pleasant). He instead chose to help the rightful ruler (a duty thing) and by making that choice he received a ‘special” mount – a griffin whose ability to fly enabled him to save both his sister and Moergen.



    Anyway the final conflict in the capital involved the PCs invading Osoerde and marching into the capital just in time to see the face-off between Jaison and Moergen. Jaison was just about to apply the killing blow when he was suddenly felled by a crossbow bolt. Diirk’s payment to Moergen.







    Duane Eggert

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    Quote Originally Posted by irdeggman
    Several people seem to have read that the prefect of the Church of Storm’s Height is Jaison Raenech’s cousin.
    <snip>
    Yep...I am aware that it was originally spelled differently. IIRC the first time it came up I grabbed the name on the fly during play and simply misread it as being the same name. Afterwards I decided to go with it since I could work it in pretty well.

    Your game sounds like it was a pretty interesting spin on the situation as well.
    Last edited by BrennanHawkwood; 11-11-2005 at 03:09 AM. Reason: Forgot half my message...<rolls eyes>

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