Interesting Karameikos NPC's (and the Iron Ring, Skarda..)

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Sturm
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Interesting Karameikos NPC's (and the Iron Ring, Skarda..)

Post by Sturm » Tue May 09, 2017 12:00 pm

Hi all, as I am DMing a PbP here on the Piazza (see recruiting viewtopic.php?f=3&t=17479 and OOC thread viewtopic.php?f=65&t=14327&start=300#p194096) I am partially using it to delve into parts of Karameikan history I did not know very well and develop NPC's I did not use in my previous campaign, also thanks to the extensive work done on Karameikos by fans (and in particular by one of my players, Agathokles).
Now the purpose of this thread is to share some informations about some NPCs I am using and to see if others have used them too and how.

SPOILERS ON B6 THE VEILED SOCIETY BELOW and possibly X12 SKARDA'S MIRROR

First we started by playing B6 The Veiled Society, a module which was written before Gaz01 and that contains some interesting NPCs not appeared later in canon. In the module there is an intrigue which involves The Vorloi and Torenescu families and the Veiled Society of the Radu. IMO the module was butchered in post production to make spaces for the cardboard buildings, so it is sometimes hard to follow, and presents a Specularum a bit different from the one in the Gaz. Not only the shape of the city itself is different, but Thyatians and Traladarans are not even mentioned and the module could well end with the total destruction of the Radu.
It was clearly an early version of the city, or a different idea of it.
I used it as inspiration and modify it heavily, staging the module in 990 AC, when the Thieves Guild does not exist yet and the Veiled Society is just beginning, while the Iron Ring (which does not exist in the module) is taking control of the streets, intimidating and attacking Traladarans with the excuse of Thyatian supremacism.
In the module appears Fortunato Vorloi, whose parentage with the rest of the family is not specified, and his daughter Lucia, whose murder by the Veiled Society is a main point of the module. In my PbP however the Iron Ring tried to kidnap Lucia, but she was saved and so I made his father Fortunato, supposed brother of Philip as per Agathokles and AllanP's Specularum material, a central character in the fight against the Iron Ring.
My idea is that the Vorloi and the Torenescu (Alexander at least) appear quite moderate in the Gaz, so they could well become allies against the Iron Ring, the Veiled Society and other extremists, both Thyatians and Traladarans.
Other characters which appear in the module and not in the Gaz are Simion and Stephanos Torenescu. The first is a diplomat and here http://pandius.com/fctrnscu.html Ville Lähde supposed him to be a cousin of Christoph. In the module the Veiled Society tried to kill him, but this did not happen in the PbP as the Society maintained a much lower profile and tried to accredit itself as a organization defending Traladarans against the Iron Ring and extremists.
Stephanos instead is Lucia Vorloi's spurned suitor and I just used it as a spoiled brat and the cousin of Alexander. He appears indeed as such in the Torenescu family tree in Karameikos Kingdom of Adventure, suggesting he should be still alive in 1012 AC.
As later the PCs left Specularum I have not decided yet the fate of Fortunato, Lucia and Simion, but maybe the fight against the Iron Ring could have been much more dramatic than explained in the Gaz.
Not only the three above persons disappeared in later canon, but what about Retameron Antonic's mother and Arteris Penhaligon's mother? They are not mentioned at all Afaik, so they could well have fallen victim of the Iron Ring.
In the PbP the PCs have discovered that in 982 AC Skarda, the evil boss of module X12, kidnapped Elena Kelvin, Milena Antonic and Claudia Penhaligon (names invented by me I think, unless I found them in some fanon work!).
Skarda is a slaver so not connect him to the Iron Ring seemed really a waste :)
Anna Braun Vorloi (wife of Philip, name created by Agathokles, I think) and Melinda Azuros (wife of Christoph Torenescu and mother of Alexander, mentioned in KkoA), die sometime before 1000 AC, could they have too fallen victim of the Iron Ring?
Also I noticed a string of suspicious events in 996 AC: In the same year, in canon sources, the parents of Aleena Halaran die in Thyatis, Desmond Kelvin I is killed in a duel, Arturus Penhaligon dies of apparently natural causes and Fain Flinn is disgraced, Queen Olivia Karameikos is attacked by orcs. Coincidences? Maybe not :)

I will eventually update this thread when I decide what will happen, for now the PbP is still in 992 AC. Do you have used some of the people mentioned above in your campaigns/adventures? and how?
Last edited by Sturm on Fri Feb 02, 2018 10:45 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Robin
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Re: Some interesting Karameikos NPC's (and the Iron Ring)

Post by Robin » Tue May 09, 2017 2:48 pm

I did play the Veiled society also, but I used the Gaz map instead...the B6 map I used to reflect the Thyatian city . hereby i mirrored the map so it is located on the other side of the river.
As to interesting NPC's I used several from the Gazetteer, but introduced also several from the Johauna Menhir trilogy, and the book Dark Knight of Karameikos.
as of npc's of my own design which had to meddle against the iron ring I used the npc's used also in the creation of the Glasshouse of Slyth.(as partially decribed here http://6inchnails.deviantart.com/art/Gl ... -663739422
as Slyth Slaggash needed several obscure, and sometimes illegal plants (due commerce laws, restrictions, or because the plant is dangerous), the party had to collect these from various sources, near and far, legal and illegal (sometimes relaying even upon theft of fruits, seeds, roots, twigs (as ents), or even whole plants) had to compete with the iron ring sometimes, as crossing the same paths.

i now remember, i had deeply analyzed dark knight to delve all locations and persona from it, due this pc/npc group.
Alies Meerman had drawn the pc's then several times, as she was one of the players then.
i'll try to locate this if you want too.
My Deviantart page; http://6inchnails.deviantart.com/ For Mystara hexmaps and Fantasy art (to see all fantasy art; enter and declare you are an adult...frigging exposure rules)
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Re: Some interesting Karameikos NPC's (and the Iron Ring)

Post by Sturm » Tue May 09, 2017 3:05 pm

Indeed any material you may have would be interesting. Note also that Agathokles and Allan P have already compiled a lot of canon and fanon info on Specularum here: http://pandius.com/fc_spclm.html, material which indeed I used extensively in the PbP..

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Re: Some interesting Karameikos NPC's (and the Iron Ring)

Post by Robin » Tue May 09, 2017 3:22 pm

i see what i can do...thus far you have the link to the glasshouse, where the timescheme of its construction can be found in the links below each drawing.
My Deviantart page; http://6inchnails.deviantart.com/ For Mystara hexmaps and Fantasy art (to see all fantasy art; enter and declare you are an adult...frigging exposure rules)
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Re: Some interesting Karameikos NPC's (and the Iron Ring)

Post by Sturm » Fri Feb 02, 2018 10:44 am

Updating this thread as the storyline in the Karameikos Play by Post has progressed, allowing me to explore some modules I never played before in an unusual way and use some of the fantastic fan material developed by people over the years for Karameikos.
After Specularum and B6 the party moved to Highforge (which I had a chance to develop more, see my article in Threshold issue #16) and we played parts of B9 and B5, then B11 and partially X12. What will come next will depend mostly on the choices of the players.
This campaign, now going on since more than 2 years, have given me the chances to do things quite differently from what I did back in 1991 when I started leading low levels PCs in Karameikos:
- There is now an amount of canon and fan material which did not exist at the time, allowing me to create a much more detailed setting
- I avoided this time to treat the PCs as superheroes always on duty to resolve all situations, letting them instead be "normal people" who are called from time to time to face some situations, but lead in the meantime their lives.
- I de-constructed the classic modules, eliminating all the unrealistic parts, such as monsters waiting in their rooms to be slaughtered. For the same reason, the PCs are normally not sent alone to deal with nation-threatening menaces, but are more logically supported by lords and armies. The players behaved likely in a rational way and did not try to save the world by themselves :)

The focus of the plot now is the possible connection between the Iron Ring and Skarda. This is indeed quite a mystery about the development of Karameikos, IMHO. It is strange that Aaron Allston did not use this material in Gaz 1. Also the Mirror, which is probably an artefact, was never mentioned again in other canon products.
What do you think about this? Could Skarda be the true leader of the Iron Ring? This is not explicit nor apparent as his men do not wear iron rings, and obviously there was never any connection in canon. The Iron Ring is a slavers organization, while Skarda seems to take slaves only for himself.
What could be the origin of the Mirror? Share opinions and info, I could use them as inspiration for the PbP :)

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Re: Interesting Karameikos NPC's (and the Iron Ring, Skarda.

Post by oleck » Mon Feb 05, 2018 3:46 pm

I recomend some of my work:

On the Iron Ring i recomend you
http://pandius.com/MD01_The_Iron_Ring_Society_Files.pdf

On blight swamp information
http://pandius.com/blight_swamp_compilation.pdf

Map on Luln with information
http://pandius.com/Luln_Map.pdf

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Re: Interesting Karameikos NPC's (and the Iron Ring, Skarda.

Post by Sturm » Tue Feb 06, 2018 10:37 am

Yes indeed your Iron Ring Files will be extremely useful Oleck :)

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Re: Interesting Karameikos NPC's (and the Iron Ring, Skarda.

Post by Hugin » Fri Feb 09, 2018 1:28 am

Indeed, I might find your work useful when my campaign resumes, Oleck. Thanks for the links.

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