fredag 23 mars 2018

Keep On The Borderlands - Background for the players

Here's a short background about the setting that I went through for the players before I let them loose in the Borderlands:

Rumors have reached the capital about trouble brewing around the kingdoms northern outpost, a hilltop keep aptly named "Northern Gate". Caravans on the trade route to the east of the keep have been raided, rangers hunting in the forest have spotted increased orc activity apart from the usual bands of gnoll and one or two farms have had their crops stolen and livestock abducted and found slaughtered. The source of the troubles has been pinpointed to an old stripmine that was used to mine the stone needed to build the keep decades ago.

The keep commander "Berand" at first insisted that everything was under control but after one group of city guards sent out to investigate disappeared and another group came back badly maimed without even reaching the site there were few people that enlisted willingly for the next trip. This forced the commander to suspend caravans going east from the keep, increase riding guard frequency along the trade route aswell as sending a formal request for aid to the kingdoms central administration. Meanwhile hunters returned with even more worrysome news: wierd chanting has been heard in the woods during the night, there has also been haunting displays of light on the night sky above the area of the strip mine indicating foul magic which mobilized the keeps clerics to send a similar message to the church central command.

Kingdom and Church officials responded warily, not willing to throw resources and manpower on an minor problem in a remote area of the kingdom. What they did though was to forward the request to the Adventurers Guild that whoever were willing to investigate the site and help the commander out was promised to keep anything valuable they might find and that they were also exempt from any and all of the commanders usual taxes for trading within the keep. They also enlisted a caravan to transport the first able men who signed up free of charge and sent with them a letter that would grant them one weeks free accomodation provided by the commander upon arrival signed with the kings sigil.

The PC's, lured by a number of different motivations, namely to investigate the evil chanting (cleric), to track an orc band who once raided his home village (knight), to help rural people in need (scout) or just to match his superior sword skill against real foes instead of dueling partners (swashbuckler) but mostly by the promise of loot aplenty they all passed the inital requirements set by the Adventure's Guild and got their spot on the caravan.

During the two week long trip from the heart of the kingdom to the borderlands the four PC's quickly realized they could make use of each others skills in the wilderness and decided to band together.

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