Well you certainly said what you meant then. I don’t blame you for wanting to throw a new spin on half orcs, they can get a bit stale, im glad you clarified though. Any new updates? How did your first game as a player go?
No worries on the late post, im in school myself right now and totally understand.As far as the game-interesting stuff. What were the remaining half of the council’s response to the upstart merchant councilors? Did the old councilors oppose the new when they dissolved the guard? If so how did the new councilors gain the majority they needed? Does the watch hold no political power or have no friends amongst the old councilors? If so, can’t you bring these matters to them? Your game sounded like fun, critting on your first hit is a great way to start a barbarian. How will the Storm Wolves react I wonder. Can they be bought? Lots of questions with likely no answers.
Lots of questions, yeah, and very few answers at this point. Akkarin was actually kind of vague regarding the whole "City Guard to Purple Cloaks" transition; he said that the guard was basically stripped down, and replaced with people loyal to the Council. For a major plot point, it was actually kind of glossed over. That's okay by me, I mean, I guess I understand where he's going with it: the guard's been replaced by the sellsword companies loyal to the merchant lords, basically. It gives the city a completely different feel. Kind of oppressive, to be honest. And there's this very obvious "us versus them" mentality now.
The 'Watch does have contacts in the Raining City, and we do have a certain amount of political power. The 'Watch are heroes, after all; we took down Vhauglohrl, and broke the back of Zessith's invasion only a few months ago. That victory is still fresh in the minds of the people, and they aren't likely to forget it anytime soon.
This new Council, though ... isn't well liked. Rumours are flying around that the merchant lords and the Thieves' Guild were implicit in the attack on the city. Some people are claiming that they out-right facilitated it, by feeding Zessith the kind of tactical information that only high-ranking members of the city would have access to. About half of the original Council was wiped out in the attack, but who's to say that the ones who remain weren't in on the plot all along? You know what I'm saying? Maybe the ones who died were the only innocent ones, and now the Council is entirely made up of terrible people.
I don't know if you're familiar with Warcraft, but there's a situation in World of Warcraft that seems similiar to this: during the events of the original series, the city of Stormwind was completely ruined by the Horde; burned to the ground, essentially. In the years following the Wars, the master craftsmen and builders of the area got together and worked hard to restore the city to its former glory. When it was all over, though, the nobility of Stormwind refused to pay for the services of these craftsmen -- at least, not in full. For years, they lobbied the city for the money that was owed them, but the truth was that Stormwind's coffers were empty. The war had devasted everyone, including the rich. At any rate, the craftsmen and builders eventually formed a kind of thieves' guild of their own, called "The Defias Brotherhood", dedicated to striking back at the nobility of Stormwind, and stealing from them all the money that they're rightfully owed.
Sort of reminds me of that scenario, I was thinking. It's become something that's just completely corrupt. It was always there before, beneath the surface, but now it's boiled over. It's on top now, and everyone can see it.I think the people of Strasa will side with the 'Watch on this issue, I really do. But now is not the time to strike back against the Council. I personally think we need to temporarily flee the city, gain information about what exactly happened, who was behind it, etc, rally our strength and our allies, and push back when we're properly prepared. If we strike back against the Council immediately, I think it'll end up looking like a coup -- the 'Watch may be well-respected, but Mogr's a heathen barbarian, and the Storm Wolves are a mercenary company created from the remnants of the old guard. I just think it paints a bad picture.I think a better opportunity will come along quickly, frankly. The city doesn't trust this new Council at all. I think they'll side with the 'Watch. When we leave town, and the Council's talking about how we're wanted for war crimes and murder, I think people are going to know it's false. The longer they suffer the Council's lies and oppression, the more they'll cry out for the 'Watch to save them. And when the time is right, we'll show up again, stronger than ever, and put an end to this whole farce.
Anyway, that's basically everything that happened. We're losing a lot of our momentum, as a group, and that's what bothers me, to be honest. This is what always happens to me, lol. The reason I always have to be the DM is because nobody else wants to do it. I like DMing, though. I honestly do. It's just that ... I'm 27 now, and I haven't been able to be a player since i was like 16. I want to play more than just about anything, but it always falls on my shoulders to run the group.
Thanks to everyone that posted in this. I'm going to be running Strasa for my game also, although not with 4e, I’m going to use a grittier, low magic, system. I feel like part of the fun of the setting is the oppressive nature of the wet and cold, the Strassan's struggle for survival in this uncomfortable place. 4e characters are too powerful to experience that element of the setting, drop a quick fastidiousness charm and you'll stay dry for week.
I’ve been compiling the information in the thread into an ‘official’ version for my game, adding my own stuff as I go. Here is a low magic explanation as to why people might stay in a place like this and a bit about how their behavior has changed to accommodate the rains, some of which comes from previous posts.
Industry Strasa sits in a pass, which is the only navigable area in a wide mountain range. The surrounding countryside is all swamp and bog, making regular wagons and draft teams useless. Goods are carried as far as the outskirts and then given over to Strasan teams who use man power and pulleys to haul the cargo up a long series of wooden ‘ribs’ to the lake, where it can be ferried across. Without them to maintain the path and ferries this area is effectively impassable. The city also houses a large military force in service of a major kingdom in the flat lands below. These cities, ‘The Flats’ in the local vernacular, vie to offer the most lucrative military contract. Control of Strasa and the people and trade that travel through it is a major political and practical advantage. Mannerisms and Dress Among the city’s wealthy residents, sheepskin is the most popular material, it’s light and highly waterproof. They craft it into long, leather overcoats to keep their bodies dry, tall leather boots to keep their feet from soaking in the many puddles in the city, and wide hats with floppy brims to deflect the rain from their heads and their eyes. But sheepskin must be imported and it ruins easily. All the poor and middle class people wear loose wool pants, and nothing else, while outside. Each building and home has a small atrium with towels and fireplaces for guests to hang their stuff. Visitors dry off and then are given new clothes to wear while indoors. It’s necessary to make frequent stops indoors to warm yourself during the day, so many homes leave their outer doors unlocked so that passersbys can use the fire. There are also lounges where you pay a chit for a warm drink and seat by a roaring fire pit.
His new girlfriend, who I may have mentioned wants to play with us, has decided to make a Razorclaw Shifter Archery Ranger. Virgil's player says he might work on her a bit, and see if she'll want to switch to an Elf, but Razorclaw Shifter's solid, in my opinion. It'll certainly help us in the range department, which is something we sorely need.Anyway, pretty exciting. More news when I have some.