The 14th Age

Discuss Pelgrane Press's 13th Age rules here. Discussion of the Dragon Empire campaign setting can also be held here.

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kinokopress
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The 14th Age

Post by kinokopress » Mon Nov 12, 2018 4:45 pm

Let's talk about this. When an Age ends in the Dragon Empire, icons fade, new ones rise, new conflicts emerge, even entire races appear or disappear.

Given the current state of the 13th Age as described in the books, how would you say the upcoming 14th Age will look like?
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Re: The 14th Age

Post by johnsonny » Mon Nov 12, 2018 8:41 pm

I think that's a tough question to answer, as what happens at each table is going to make a different 13th Age. One table might have the Lich King rise and take over, but at another, it might be the Diabolist. Or perhaps the Orc Lord and the Archmage striking an agreement. Or....

The real question is, at _your_ table, what powers are vying for control of the 14th Age?

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Re: The 14th Age

Post by Tim Baker » Mon Nov 12, 2018 10:18 pm

If my players aren't successful in the current campaign, the 14th Age will feature the Archmage given in to the madness of the Outer Realm, a tentacled monstrosity, struggling to balance his newfound power while clinging to his own sense of self. He'll be joined with the High Druid, the Priestess, and the Crusader to stop demons from destroying all life. Meanwhile, the devils have arrived in The World, Levistus serving as their icon. The Great Gold Wyrm has been defeated, and the Emperor (or at least an emperor) lives, but has fallen from power and is no longer an icon. Unless the characters can prevent this from happening, of course.
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Re: The 14th Age

Post by Yaskodray » Wed Nov 14, 2018 9:22 am

The Prince of Shadows manipulated some of the 13th Age’s icons into destroying each other, but has (supposedly) paid for that scheme with their own life.

The previous Archmage has fallen and no other wizard has risen to take his place. Horizon is in ruins - and seasons across the empire are now returning to ‘normal’, but (at least initially) accompanied by wild weather; storms and floods are punishing the empire’s farmlands for centuries of artificial calm.

There’s much speculation that this will be an age of sorcery - or worse, of chaos magic - rather than wizardry. If so, surely the great mage of the Age will come from one of those paths? Perhaps it’s a good thing that they haven’t risen yet, whoever they are.

For the first time in ten Ages there’s a new Elf Queen. Nobody knows what to expect from her. She’s new, untried, and inheriting a fragmented people. Many say that she’s only the queen of the High Elves - the Wood Elves are drawn to the new High Druid; the Drow are vanishing into the darkness now that the poisons of the underworld seem to be dispersing.

The Green is loose, freed by the old Elf Queen’s death. Some rumours say it was the Green that actually killed her, swallowing her whole.

(Other, darker, tales say that the Elf Queen isn’t actually dead. Not quite. The Green repaid her for that long imprisonment by channeling centuries of pain and anger into a great magical working, a single blast of dragon breath. The Queen’s now trapped on the edge of life and consciousness, her body poisoned and broken beyond repair. It’s best not to speculate too much about the state of her mind. Or what’s left of her mind. But many of those who tell such stories also claim she’s telepathically active, screaming disjointed fragments into the minds of unfortunate souls who catch her attention).

The Three are now Four and their great general has returned to them. People have forgotten that the Green was a military thinker, their finest strategIst. The 14th Age will serve as a reminder to the Four’s enemies.

(If the Green agrees with her fellows, that is. Some speculate that she hasn’t forgiven them for leaving her trapped for so long, or that her long imprisonment has harmed her sanity)

The only consolation is that - for the moment - the Blue still honours her pact with the Emperor. Drakkenhall stands with the empire, at least in some battles.

Perhaps because of that, kobolds and lizardfolk are increasingly accepted as Imperial citizens - and are increasingly acting like any other citizens, distancing themselves from the Blue and settling across the empire. Individuals are increasingly diverse, abandoning their old tribal lifestyles and following whatever careers and paths they feel drawn to.

The Lich King has fallen. Perhaps destroyed, but probably just licking his wounds after the wars that ended the last age. He may take a long time to recover. They also say that the Hooded Woman has been sighted, back after so many centuries, so perhaps death will wear a very different mask this Age.

(The historians say she was always fairer than the Lich King, measured and just - though never kind - back in the days before he rose, when she still walked the land. But that was a long time ago. Stories shift, people change and, of course, the 14th Age’s Hooded Woman might be someone else entirely)

One thing’s known for certain - the Lich King lost his undead steed in the battles at the end of the 13th Age. The broken bones of the reanimated White have been missing ever since. And absolutely everyone knows that the Four want them back. They’ve been very open about that, offering a grand reward to whoever can return their brother’s remains.

Some say that the great dragons think they can raise him, even after all this time. Or somehow use his bones to anoint a successor. And then they will be Five again. Whole again. And the Empire will tremble.

As for other dragons, the voice of the Great Gold Wyrm is still there, but seems increasingly faint. This may be his last Age, and his followers grow isolated; many of them no longer seem to trust the Emperor.

Perhaps they have good reason. These are uncertain times. The Orc Lord, unscathed by the end of the 13th Age, is building his own brutal kingdom in the far north - where a seventh great city is rising to replace Horizon. He sees himself as both rival and equal to the Emperor, they say.

Unsettled by all this, the new Emperor has frequently reacted to minor distractions with a show of force. The imperial legions have put down several small rebellions with more violence than was needed. And reportedly some of those ‘rebellions’ were actually closer to food riots.

The Dwarf King, older and (perhaps) wiser, is reacting a little differently. His people are becoming wary and more insular - visitors are increasingly unwelcome in Forge and Anvil - but he is not lashing out. Nor is he actively returning to the deep Underworld, unlike the dark elves. But he seems to think that a stormis coming.

They say there’s a new Diabolist. A halfling, an affable fellow. Nothing out of the ordinary. Friendly, polite. You could pass him in the street and not think twice. He’d probably wish you good day or comment on the weather. And you wouldn’t know what he really was until he raised horrors from hell to skin you alive.

He did that to Burrow, you see. Laid waste to the whole town.

The nearby settlements of Old Town and Twisp are scared, fragile places now. Even Concord’s wary, rattled and far less friendly than it used to be.

(Hellmarsh, on the other hand, seems to be abandoned and slowly returning to normal. The hellholes are sealed, the marsh is slowly draining and - these days - the most obvious threats it holds are mundane, such as the huge bands of vicious bandits who use it as their base)

And there’s a new High Druid. They seem wise and benevolent. And their druidic magic is reconnecting with the seas in a way that hasn’t been seen for many ages.

The Midland Sea grows angrier, recalling the original ‘Stormmaker’ of ancient ages. The Iron Sea grows calmer; settlements on the eastern coast of the empire are expanding, no longer relying on the sea wall - some are even building fishing fleets.

A few bold explorers have started to reclaim some of the ruined islands lost to the Iron Sea in past ages. Reports say they’ve found treasures, mysteries and unexpected horrors.

More foolish explorers have set out to cross the Iron Sea. So far, none have returned. But there are reports of more cautious sailors sighting huge dark ships on the eastern horizon, so perhaps the Dragon Empire will be reacquainted with its neighbours soon enough anyway...

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Re: The 14th Age

Post by Tim Baker » Wed Nov 14, 2018 6:24 pm

Yaskodray, that's quite detailed. Did this happen in your campaign? Are these more like Dungeon World Fronts that are advancing in your 13th Age, and if the PCs don't intervene, this is how the 14th Age will be ushered in?
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Re: The 14th Age

Post by Yaskodray » Wed Nov 14, 2018 11:22 pm

Some of it’s the way my campaign is heading (if our heroes don’t intervene), with some elements from the Book of Ages etc. thrown in.

I like the idea of putting the Green back into play, especially as I’ve not seen anything that really explains her specialty - if the Black is the sneaky one, the Red is pure destruction and the Blue is sorcery, what does the Green bring to the party? A fighter/commander style seemed like an interesting idea...

I’m running with a 12th Age history where Horizon was ruined and there was no Archmage, so taking him off the board again kinda appeals. Likewise with the Lich King - I don’t have any more ideas for him once the 13th arc wraps up, so sending him offstage (well, probably) seems interesting.

The new Diabolist is because I wanted a halfling icon, mostly. Which then led into the fate of Burrow and the lack of his (overt) presence in Hellmarsh. I think this one enjoys causing fear, and causing trouble for halflings in general.

And with an increasingly integrated Drakkenhall, a more permanent settlement for the Orc Lord can take its place in the north. I think the setting needs a city where adventurers (and humans) need to tread a little carefully. And I was never too sure what to do with the Orc Lord in the 13th - he’s not going to get his big showdown with the Lich King or Elf Queen as other plots are in play. And I think he was half expecting to die gloriously - or at least lose much of his power - in defeating them.

But here he is, unexpectedly alive and no longer defined by ancient enemies. So he’s doing less destroying and more building. It doesn’t make him nice, of course. But he’s reevaluating things and making longer term plans.

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Re: The 14th Age

Post by Tim Baker » Thu Nov 15, 2018 6:06 am

Sounds like a fun campaign. :)
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Re: The 14th Age

Post by Angel Tarragon » Thu Nov 15, 2018 6:57 am

Yaskodray wrote:
Wed Nov 14, 2018 11:22 pm
Some of it’s the way my campaign is heading (if our heroes don’t intervene), with some elements from the Book of Ages etc. thrown in.

I like the idea of putting the Green back into play, especially as I’ve not seen anything that really explains her specialty - if the Black is the sneaky one, the Red is pure destruction and the Blue is sorcery, what does the Green bring to the party? A fighter/commander style seemed like an interesting idea...

I’m running with a 12th Age history where Horizon was ruined and there was no Archmage, so taking him off the board again kinda appeals. Likewise with the Lich King - I don’t have any more ideas for him once the 13th arc wraps up, so sending him offstage (well, probably) seems interesting.

The new Diabolist is because I wanted a halfling icon, mostly. Which then led into the fate of Burrow and the lack of his (overt) presence in Hellmarsh. I think this one enjoys causing fear, and causing trouble for halflings in general.

And with an increasingly integrated Drakkenhall, a more permanent settlement for the Orc Lord can take its place in the north. I think the setting needs a city where adventurers (and humans) need to tread a little carefully. And I was never too sure what to do with the Orc Lord in the 13th - he’s not going to get his big showdown with the Lich King or Elf Queen as other plots are in play. And I think he was half expecting to die gloriously - or at least lose much of his power - in defeating them.

But here he is, unexpectedly alive and no longer defined by ancient enemies. So he’s doing less destroying and more building. It doesn’t make him nice, of course. But he’s reevaluating things and making longer term plans.
Intriguing! :cool:

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