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Brændt 3.000-årig bosættelse, der er frosset i tid, kan være blevet brændt af Raiding Party


Arkæologer spekulerer i, at en raiding party brændte en bronzealder bosættelse på stylter, der var velbevaret i flodens silt, den faldt ned i for omkring 3.000 år siden. En række tip på stedet, som ligger lige øst for Petersborough, England, herunder palisader lavet af nyt træ, indikerer, at folk havde boet der bare kort tid, før det brændte.

Stedet ligger ved et stenbrud cirka 120 km nord for London kaldet Must Farm. En arkæolog opdagede det i 1999, da han så træpæle eller palisader stikke ud af mudderet og siltet, hvilket også bevarede dem og mange andre artefakter. Brænding og forkulning af træet var også med til at bevare noget af materialet.

Konserveret træ på Must Farm af Dr Colleen Morgan

Et websted om stedet og udgravninger der hedder: ”På et tidspunkt efter palisaden blev skabt, rev en brand igennem bebyggelsen, hvilket fik platformen til at falde ned i floden nedenfor, hvor flammerne straks blev slukket. Da materialet lå på flodbredden, var det dækket med lag af ikke-porøst silt, som hjalp med at bevare alt fra træredskaber til tøj. Det er denne grad af bevarelse, der gør stedet fascinerende og giver os hundredvis af indsigt i livet i bronzealderen. ”

De gamle mennesker byggede rundhusene over vandet og omringede dem med en muligvis defensiv palisade. Tegning af Vicki Herring for Cambridge Archaeological Unit

Selvom hele stedet er fantastisk, med sine ni bjælkebåde fundet i nærheden, ni rundhuse og mange vigtige artefakter, var to af de vigtigste fund tekstiler og forglasede fødevarer. Perler, sandsynligvis fra Balkan og Mellemøsten, viste også, at der var langdistancehandel i Storbritannien, hvor bronzealderen begyndte for omkring 4.000 til 4.500 år siden.

Formålet med tekstilerne er ikke blevet opdaget, fordi der ikke er spor, som manchetter kan sige, om det blev brugt til tøj eller andre formål. Et af teammedlemmerne, Susanna Harris fra Glasgow University, sagde imidlertid, at de har fundet fint linned med trådtællinger på 30 procent, lige så fint som enhver klud kendt fra datidens Europa. "Jeg tællede dem flere gange og tænkte," Det kan ikke være rigtigt, "sagde Harris til ScienceMag.org. Holdet har også fundet hanke af garn og kugler af tråd.

Dette foto ligner måske ikke meget, men det er et fantastisk bevaret eksemplar af et 3.000 år gammelt tekstilstykke fra Must Farm-stedet. En ekspert siger, at nogle af tekstilerne på stedet er lige så fine som noget i Europa på det tidspunkt. Foto af Cambridge Archaeological Unit

Arkæologer, der arbejder på Must Farm, afslørede nogle af deres fund for medierne i denne uge. Nu agter de at trække sig tilbage til laboratoriet for nærmere at undersøge og analysere de mange artefakter, de har opdaget på dette sted.

Det er den bedste bronzealder -bosættelse, der nogensinde er fundet i Det Forenede Kongerige, ”sagde Mark Knight, projektleder for Cambridge Archaeological Unit, et privat firma, der står for udgravningerne. "Vi skal muligvis vente hundrede år, før vi finder en tilsvarende."

Arkæologerne siger, at rundhusene var omkring 8 meter i diameter. De blev bygget over vandet som et forsvar og for at lette handelen på floden, hvilket førte til Vesterhavet og andre gårde i området.

Hvert hus havde træbearbejdningsværktøjer, herunder mejsler, økser og hulninger. De havde også segl til at høste korn, spyd til jagt og måske kamp og sæt keramik, der indeholdt små kopper, fine skåle og opbevaringsglas.

I den nordøstlige sektor af hvert hus var slagterlam. Dumpet i floden var dele af rådyr og vilde grise. Arkæologerne spekulerer på, at indbyggerne kan have haft et tabu mod at slagte vildt indendørs.

En skål med et flis. Foto af Cambridge Archaeological Unit

Flere madbeholdere indeholder forkullet, hvede, byg og rester af mad, der allerede var kogt. En skål gryderet havde en ske i sin brændte skorpe. Eksperter håber at få bronzealderopskrifter fra det forhistoriske smørbord.

Træringe fra træ, der blev brugt til at konstruere rundhuse og palisade, var fra omkring 1290 til 1250 f.Kr. og var alle grønne og uforstyrrede af insekter. Det, plus træflis fundet der, fortæller arkæologer, at det var en ny bosættelse, da den brændte.

Arkæolog Karl Harrison fra Cranfield University har analyseret brandskader og svedmærker for at afgøre, om branden startede i et hus eller udenfor. Hvis det startede inde, kan det have været fra en kogbrand. Hvis branden startede udenfor, kan det have været et tilfælde af brandstiftelse. "Det var hurtigt, røgfyldt og utroligt ødelæggende," sagde han til ScienceMag.org. "Du ville have et par minutter til at skrabe rundt."

Folk vendte aldrig tilbage til stedet, hvilket sikrede, at det var velbevaret for moderne arkæologer at opdage og analysere.


Unikke viking runer opdaget i Danmark

En gammel kam og plade graveret med mystiske tidlige runeindskrifter af vikinger for mere end 1.200 år siden er blevet fundet af forskere.

Kammen blev fundet under udgravninger af en vikingetidens markedsplads i Danmarks ældste by Ribe.

Kammen havde en indskrift af runeordet for 'kam', mens pladen, lavet af knogle eller gevir, kan have været indskrevet med et vikingnavn: Tobi.

Opdagelserne er betydningsfulde, fordi få runetekster fra denne periode eksisterer, da runer ændrede sig drastisk, og et nyt alfabet begyndte at blive brugt.

Arkæologerne, der gjorde opdagelsen, er ivrige efter at finde ud af, om runerne på kam og plade var det nye alfabet, som begyndte at blive brugt i begyndelsen af ​​vikingetiden i 800 e.Kr. (1.200 år siden).

Opdagelsen af ​​de 2 nye artefakter fordobler antallet af runer fra Ribe.

»Det er de runer, vi har manglet,« sagde Søren Sindbæk, arkæolog og udgravningsleder fra Aarhus Universitet, Danmark til ScienceNordic.

'Vi har ventet i generationer med at kunne grave i det her.'

Arkæologer har ikke beviser for at vide, hvordan skriftligt og talt sprog var i løbet af denne tid, og hvad vikinger brugte runerne til.

Ifølge Sindbæk er artefakterne fra en periode, hvor runer ændrede sig meget, og opdagelsen udvider specialisternes 'forståelse af de forskellige anvendelser, de havde.

Det kunne have været brugt som et værktøj til at mærke ejendom til forhandlere eller til at sende meddelelser over en lang afstand eller endda til at tilkalde guder.

Sindbæk opdagede først pladen, da han udgravede et lille hus, men han kunne først ikke finde ud af, hvad markeringerne var.

Det var svært at tyde markeringen i begyndelsen, fordi begge ender manglede.

Desuden manglede teksten visse funktioner, der markerer begyndelsen og slutningen på et ord.

Inden den nye rune kom i brug, brugte vikingerne et mere kompliceret alfabet kaldet futhark på 24 tegn - en kombination af de første 6 bogstaver i dets alfabet.

Ifølge forskerne var alfabetet opbygget, så hver rune havde sit eget navn og angav lyden. Men efterhånden som sproget udviklede sig, ændrede disse navne og lyde sig også, og det blev for svært at huske lyden af ​​hver rune og der var for meget usikkerhed i budskabet.

Til sidst besluttede vikingerne sig for ikke at bruge det gamle system mere, og et nyt alfabet kom i brug, som afsløret af vikingens runesten.


Et forstørret billede af runerne ætset på den ene del af kammen. Begge sider indeholder ordet 'kam.' På den ene side er det verbet (at kamme) og den anden emnet, kam. Det var muligvis indskrevet af to forskellige mennesker


Denne knogleplade blev brændt og var nedbrudt efter mere end 1.000 år i jorden. Den måler kun 3,8 x 1,8 centimeter


Skeletter af kvinde og barn fundet under Tower of London

St. Peter's ad Vincula Chapel har været et åndeligt tilflugtssted i Tower of London siden 1500-tallet, graven for nogle af de mest fremtrædende fanger på tårnet, herunder Henry VIII's skæbnesvangre anden og femte koner Anne Boleyn og Catherine Howard .

Men i store dele af sin 950-årige historie var tårnet også et blomstrende palads og forsamlingshus.

Inden for middelalderborgens mure var kapeller, pubber, regeringskontorer og boliger for de hundredvis af londonere, der holdt stedet kørende.

Og som det første nye skeletfund i næsten 50 år minder os om, var det ikke alle, der blev begravet der, der blev betjent af rektorens øks.

To intakte skeletter-det ene af en kvinde, der døde cirka 40 år gammel og et af en 7-årig pige-blev for nylig gravet op fra tilsluttede gravsteder under tårnets kapel St. Peter ad Vincula.

Parret er de første skeletter, der blev opdaget på tårnet siden 1970'erne og de første komplette skeletter fra tårnet, der nogensinde fik analyseret deres knogler af en osteoarkæolog, oplyser kuratorer ved tårnet i en pressemeddelelse.

Dette indgående kig på den afdøde duo afslørede, at både voksen og barn levede arbejderklassens ubehagelige liv.

Ifølge Alfred Hawkins, en kurator ved Historic Royal Palaces (den nonprofitorganisation, der plejer tårnet), tyder fundet på, at Tower of London ikke kun var et sted, hvor forrædere og adelige blev begravet, men også var et gravsted for mange almindelige mennesker, der boede og arbejdede der. Opdagelsen fremhæver den dynamiske karakter af et websted, der oftest er forbundet med de grufulde dødsfald blandt Englands rige og magtfulde.

"Da den første komplette skal undersøges inde fra denne kongelige fæstning, har de tilbudt os en chance for at få et glimt af det menneskelige element i tårnet, som er så let at gå glip af," sagde Hawkins i en erklæring.

"Denne fæstning har været besat i næsten 1.000 år, men vi skal huske, at det ikke kun var et palads, en fæstning og et fængsel, men at det også har været et hjem for dem, der arbejdede inden for dets mure."

Hawkins og hans kolleger opdagede skeletterne, mens de gennemførte en arkæologisk undersøgelse for at gøre St. Peter ad Vincula-kapellet mere tilgængeligt for kørestole.

Lige uden for kapelets hovedindgang opdagede forskerne resterne af det, der syntes at være et endnu ældre kapel, herunder et middelaldergulv. Skåret i gulvet var to begravelser, arrangeret side om side.

De to skeletter blev fundet liggende på ryggen med fødderne mod øst, typisk for kristen begravelse, sagde kuratorerne.

Den voksne kvinde så ud til at have været begravet i en kiste (der blev fundet nogle kistspik i nærheden), mens pigen tilsyneladende ganske enkelt var pakket ind i et gravklæde, inden hun blev begravet.

Disse skikke var typiske for senmiddelalderen og de tidlige Tudor -perioder, hvilket tyder på, at skeletterne blev begravet mellem 1450 og 1550, engang mellem Rosekrigen og Edward VI (Henry VIII's søns) regeringstid.

En analyse af knoglerne viste, at begge viste tegn på sygdom ved døden, og at den ældre kvinde sandsynligvis havde kroniske smerter i ryggen.

Der var ingen tegn på voldelig død (dvs. ingen øksemærker i livmoderhalsområdet). Alle sporene pegede på to borgere - hverken kongelige eller fanger - der boede, arbejdede og til sidst døde ved tårnet, før de blev respektfuldt begravet der.

Skeletterne er nu blevet genindført i kapellet under en særlig ceremoni af Tower of London -kapellanen, sagde kuratorerne. Må de hvile (igen) i fred.


Israelske teenagere opdager Trove med 1.100 år gamle guldmønter

I sommerferien opdagede to israelske teenagere en cache med hundredvis af guldmønter dateret fra 1.100 år siden. Skatten, begravet i en lerkrukke, blev fundet på et arkæologisk sted i det centrale Israel, Yavne den 18. august 2020 ifølge Israel Antiquities Authority (IAA). Unge fandt en 1.100-årig guldskare under en udgravning i Israel.

Robert Kool, en møntspecialist fra IAA, sagde, at mønterne dateres tilbage til slutningen af ​​det 9. århundrede, da regionen blev kontrolleret af islamisk abbasidisk kalifat, et dynasti, der styrede territoriet fra det moderne Algeriet til Afghanistan. Mønterne 425 var lavet af rent 24 karat guld og vejede 845 gram.

»En person kan købe et luksushus med et sådant beløb i et af de bedste kvarterer i Fustat, den enorme velhavende hovedstad i Egypten i disse dage,« sagde Kool. Teenagerne, der deltog i præ-militær national service, troede først, at de havde fundet nogle meget tynde blade begravet i en krukke.

"Det var forbløffende. Jeg gravede i jorden, og da jeg udgravede jorden, så jeg, hvad der lignede meget tynde blade, ”sagde Oz Cohen, en af ​​de unge, der fandt mønterne, i en erklæring. ”Da jeg kiggede igen, så jeg, at det var guldmønter. Det var virkelig spændende at finde sådan en særlig og gammel skat. ”

At finde en så stor cache af guldmønter er yderst sjældent, sagde direktørerne for udgravningsstedet, da guld ofte blev smeltet ned og genbrugt af senere civilisationer.

”Mønterne, der er lavet af rent guld, der ikke oxiderer i luften, blev fundet i fremragende stand, som om de blev begravet dagen før. Deres fund kan indikere, at international handel fandt sted mellem områdets beboere og fjerntliggende områder, ”sagde Liat Nadav-Ziv og Elie Haddad fra IAA.

”Den person, der begravede denne skat for 1.100 år siden, må have forventet at hente den og endda sikret fartøjet med et søm, så den ikke ville bevæge sig. Vi kan kun gætte, hvad der forhindrede ham i at vende tilbage for at samle denne skat, ”tilføjede de.

Samlingen af ​​guldmønter indeholder fulde gulddinarer, men også mindre stiklinger af guldmønter - brugt som småpenge, sagde Kool.

Et af stiklinger er et usædvanligt sjældent stykke, tilføjede han og viste et fragment af den byzantinske kejser Theophilos, som ville være blevet præget i naboimperiets hovedstad Konstantinopel.

Kool sagde, at fragmentet af en kristen kejser fundet i en islamisk møntskare taler om forbindelserne mellem imperierne, både i krig og fred.

I 2016 fandt en vandrer en 2.000 år gammel guldmønt med ansigtet på en romersk kejser i det østlige Galilæa. Mønten er så sjælden, at det kun vides at eksistere et andet sådant eksempel, sagde eksperter dengang.

Og i 2015 fandt dykkere en skare på næsten 2.000 guldmønter i den gamle middelhavshavn i Cæsarea, som var faldet på bunden af ​​havet i omkring 1.000 år.


Brændt 3.000-årig bosættelse, der er frosset i tiden, kan være blevet brændt af Raiding Party-History

Kort: Danny's Sock Tournament version

Serena - Alfer - Dafyth - [email protected]
Arachna - Dark Elves - JWorth - jay på immaterielt dotnet

Husregler, spillet blind, opkaldshelt forbudt.

Jeg ser ingen ondskabsstrøm strømme hen over gletscheren - endnu - så det ser ud til, at jeg har lidt åndedrætsrum til at forstærke Norden. Mine dværge undersøger SØD igen og leder efter svagheder.

Starter plan "B" - jeg håber bestemt, at den er bedre end plan "A". . .

"Ingen ondskabs horde."- de sidste ord fra en slyngespejder, der uklogt slog lejr ude i sneen. Med en stor tumult kører vores nordlige hær under min personlige kommando rundt om urenheden i lyset af elverens forsvarere. Da det ligger langs vores marchlinje, beordrer jeg indfangning af en magtknude med en befalende udsigt over fjendens forsvar (hmm. Ligner Serena har rekrutteret infanteri). Kampen er mest tilfredsstillende, og jeg tildeler medaljer til en bladedancer, bueskytte og tungt kavaleri, som alle optrådte med en tapperhed, jeg håber, at deres kammerater efterligner i de frosne kampe, som jeg er sikker på, at kommer.

I syd er situationen mindre gunstig, men vores forsvar er klar. Lad dværgene og deres sårede enhjørningsallierede gøre deres værste!

[Denne meddelelse er redigeret af JWorth (redigeret 05-01-2003 @ 00:54 AM).]

Tempoet bliver hurtigere, og endelig kan lysets kræfter hævde en konkret succes! Sydfronten er blevet smadret og efterladt helt sårbar over for den anden Dwarven -ekspeditionsstyrke. Jeg har lært meget af min modstanders taktik, og Dværgene er blevet suppleret med en egen kavalerikraft. Byen Bayou er faldet, og minen der leverer indkomst er også blevet gjort krav på. Dværgene led flere tab i et overraskende forsvar af undergrunden, men vandt igennem trods, og nissebyen er dermed også blevet befriet.

Min nordlige grænse er stadig alvorligt udsat, men modige frivillige har sneget sig ind bag den invaderende styrke og har gjort vigtige gevinster. Jeg stoler på, at det er de gennembrud, som jeg så desperat har søgt, men Arachna ser ud til altid at være kun et halvt skridt foran mig. Jeg frygter, at hendes modstød vil blive alvorlig, men jeg stoler på retfærdighedens og godhedens magt for at opretholde mine tapre krigere.

Det er en katastrofe, der ikke er udløst. Jeg havde aldrig drømt om, at du kunne storme Bayou og have tilstrækkelige overlevende til også at tage hulens vagt ud. Jeg ville have været meget bedre til at hobe alle ind i byen og blot afskrive undergrunden. Lev og lær. Medmindre jeg kan producere en afgørende sejr nordpå, og hurtigt er jeg død.

FC'erne er meget interessante. Hastighed gør en overraskende forskel, og især mellem lvl 1 infanteri er der ikke nogen fordel for forsvaret (faktisk tror jeg, at angrebsstyrken får en lille fordel i en ren nærkamp mellem tropper med samme hastighed, med fordelen reduceres jo hurtigere de engagerede tropper). Plus, faseregler - dine enhjørninger angreb hver to gange i deres indledende runde, frem for det eneste angreb, de ville modtage i FC. Hvis Lilly har evnen til at helbrede de halvdøde enhjørninger, er jeg virkelig, virkelig i problemer.

Jeg kunne knap nok tage dine partisaner ud, men jeg kan ikke lide udseendet af den overordnede position. Ikke en smule. Vi får se, hvilken kaos jeg kan forårsage nordpå.

Antallet af ofre i den sidste dag favoriserer dig, 11 til 20. Jeg bliver nødt til at forbedre det i løbet af den næste dag eller to.

[Denne meddelelse er redigeret af JWorth (redigeret 05-02-2003 @ 02:23).]

Alt er stille, men jeg frygter, at det er roen før stormen. Nordfronten er ekstremt spændt med to hære af god størrelse, der forbereder sig på angreb og forsvar. Syd synes at være i min solide kontrol, og jeg agter at gøre god brug af det.

Mit sydlige sammenbrud er totalt, da jeg kæmper for at samle en styrke, der kan stå i kamp mod Serenas mærkelige berserkere.

I nord mere manøvrering, men et opgør føles nær.

Arachna er i timeout. Jeg har sandsynligvis gjort hende en tjeneste ved at sende hende tilbage til hendes hovedstad, da aktion i Syden tager fart. Men hendes indflydelse i nord var uden for tolerance, og fjernelsen af ​​hendes enheds forbedringer (og visheden om at beholde min) gør det i det mindste til en jævn handel. Som en bonus er der sket et ry i ry, der forhåbentlig påvirker eventuelle fremtidige helte tilbud. Igen er stien nord åben for alle vovede frivillige, som jeg kan mønstre.

Bortset fra nogle mindre skadedyrsbekæmpelser ruller den anden Dwarven -ekspeditionsstyrke sammen, hjulpet af mine nymfer. Mine beuaties har taget ekstra ressourcer til at dække hærens behov.

Godt, omdømmebalancen er genoprettet, da jeg vender Serenas "fordel" tilbage. Nogle gode nyheder til en forandring - sejr i nord - jeg har udslettet Serenas hær i Danny's Sock, selv lidt alvorlige tab, men jernkernen i min hær (edderkoppedronning, bladedancer, noget kavaleri) har overlevet, og nu det er Serenas tur til at bekymre sig om forfølgelse.

Jeg kan stadig ikke lide den overordnede position - jeg frygter, at jeg kan miste en anden landsby i syd, før situationen stabiliseres, men dagens sejr har genoprettet håb for mine tropper.

[Denne meddelelse er redigeret af JWorth (redigeret 05-04-2003 @ 20:06).]

Igen giver min undertal fjende mig fordelen ved første angrebsforsvar - og en bymur og ubestridt brug af magi til at starte op. Og igen slagter min undertal fjende min hær til den sidste enhed. Hvis jeg bare havde et dusin flere enheder i forsvar, eller måske 2 eller 3 fe -drager! TEHN vi ville måske have et mere jævnt resultat!

Ak, fe -drager og ekstra stakke forstærkninger er blot fyldet med Bards fortællinger. Nymferne, som jeg havde regnet så stærkt med for at svinge fjenden til min side i en runde eller to, svigtede mig elendigt. Fire forsøg på en ydmyg aksemand, og kun en succes. Jeg er klar over, at Orc er en frastødende race, men det er ingen undskyldning for fiasko.

Med et pusterum gør min helt god brug af det og genvinder den nordlige mine. Måske kan hun holde landsbyen Halfling i sikkerhed, hvis hun bliver i området.

Heldigvis fortsætter den sydlige campiagn med succes. Dværgene fortsætter med at gøre gevinster på territorium, og mine andre nimfer løser skadedyrsbekæmpelsesproblemet.

Nå, festlighederne over erobringen af ​​Danny's Sock er korte-det er tilbage på arbejde for min hårdt pressede hær. I nord stopper vi for kort at konsolidere os, før vi udnytter vores lokale fordel (forudsat at vi overhovedet har en.).

I syd - faktisk kaldes det mere passende centrum nu, men jeg fortsætter med at betegne det som sydfronten for at undgå at sænke mine troppers ånd - jeg kan ikke helt nå Serenas hær, og derfor marcherer jeg mine tropper i en blokering, af slagsen. Mine syv kompagnier (hver et regiment, en gang, men vores rækker er stærkt udtømte, ligesom Serenas) står over for ni kompagnier af dværge, nisser og enhjørninger. Vi har fordelen af ​​kvalitet, og jeg er overbevist om resultatet af enhver kamp, ​​men vi er kun i stand til at forhindre elvenfodens passage til Pokt Island. Jeg kan ikke helt blokere Serenas enhjørninger, hvilket efterlader et spørgsmål - kan 3 enhjørninger på deres sidste ben (10 hk blandt dem) raze en by? Jeg ville ønske, jeg kendte svaret - den eneste sikkerhed er, at alle elvekræfter, der kommer ind på halvøen, aldrig vil forlade igen.

genstart - spillet frøs ved svingbelastning (ingen kampe i denne sving, så det burde ikke være en stor ting, jeg stoler på).

[Denne meddelelse er redigeret af JWorth (redigeret 05-06-2003 @ 00:44).]

Arachna fortsætter med at modarbejde mine planer ved at stille en legitim hær til standsning af min sydlige fremrykning. Selvom nissebyen er et vikende mål, anser jeg mine enhjørninger for større værdi og trækker mig tilbage for at give dem tid til at hele. Jeg beder om, at denne beslutning ikke vender tilbage til mig.
Norden er et mysterium, som jeg endnu ikke har løst i løbet af denne brutale kampagne. Jeg forsøger desperat at opklare sin gåde eller få den til at virke med fremskridt andre steder.

Vores jagt på Lilly i nord er frustreret over hendes nyvundne evne (eller havde hun denne evne hele tiden, og mine spioner var simpelthen udugelige?) Til at gemme sig i bjergene. Feigt, men effektivt.

Selvom den overordnede situation generelt kræver hastværk, synes forsigtige finter og stød passende i dag. Vi får se, hvor Serena begår sig om morgenen.

Mine enhjørninger i Syd er langsomme til at helbrede, men der er ankommet forstærkninger for at styrke tropperne der. Ikke længere en dværgeekspeditionsstyrke, det er nu en koalition af mennesker, nisser, dværge og en reformeret (slags) Orc, forstærket af hestekavaleri. Jeg er spændt på at se, hvilke forstærkninger Anachra bringer til den front.

En mindre sejr i nord giver mig håb om, at Darkelves strækkes tyndt. Den hadede spiderqueen forlod for at generobre den nordlige mine og efterlod den menneskelige by bevogtet af den næsten lige så hadede blademaster. I et vovet raid opgav Lilly sit bjergtilflugtssted og slog byen med hjælp fra en Gladerunner og en enhjørning. Hendes nyerhvervede følge blev slået ihjel næsten med det samme, men forstærket af min magi overlevede hun, erobrede byen og dræbte dens forsvarere. Selvom hun ikke er stærk nok til selv at holde byen, er prisen virkelig fin med blademasterens død, genoprettelsen af ​​min artefakt og opnåelsen af ​​et nyt erfaringsniveau.

Håbet udspringer evigt for lysets kræfter!

[Denne meddelelse er redigeret af Dafyth (redigeret 05-07-2003 @ 23:38).]

Min bladedancer vil blive stærkt savnet - jeg har for få tropper, der forsøger at dække for meget territorium. Jeg ville bytte mit krympende imperium til et ekstra kompagni af kavaleriet, der nu ligger frosset på gletscheren, men der er ikke noget at gøre. Jeg må nøjes med det, jeg har.

Fortvivlet over, at en helt nogensinde vil slutte sig til min sag, beslutter jeg mig for at inspirere mine tropper personligt, og jeg tager alene ud for at genvinde en vindmølle (slagte en af ​​de forhadte beserkere undervejs) og starte et raid, der tager den uforsvarlige elverlandsby Durbin . Mine tropper melder om en druid i horisonten, og jeg er sikker på, at mindst en glade -løber er inden for slående afstand, så jeg forventer, at Serenas modangreb vil være voldsomt - alt kan komme til at lykkes med, hvem der først kan vikle hvem. Min raid skulle i det mindste forstyrre elverstrømmen af ​​forstærkninger, og hvem ved? En sejr ville give nyt håb til mine udmattede kræfter.

[Denne meddelelse er redigeret af JWorth (redigeret 05-08-2003 @ 12:25).]

Heh, Serena og jeg låner fra hinandens kampbøger. Hun iscenesætter et vovet raid ved at projicere sin aura ind på mit domæne og sende et tilkaldt væsen og andre avancerede enheder ind i en forsvarsløs by. Hun har erobret byen og opdaget min hemmelige druid, forstyrret forsyningsledninger mod nord og stoppet mine fremskridt i syd. Men det har en pris: efter det yderligere tab af en nymfe, vinder jeg byen tilbage og rekrutterer vildsvin og vederstyggelighed til min sag. Berzerkerne hævder naturligvis øjeblikkelig hævn over det unødvendige tab af deres eget, og Arachana tilbringer igen en nat i tomrummet. Enhjørningerne hviler endnu en dag, da de sydlige koalitonstyrker samles og afventer tilbagevenden af ​​deres vandkrigere og nye rekrutter.

Som jeg frygtede, var nord kun en midlertidig sejr. Tre gange foragter spiderqueen vender tilbage fra minen med endnu flere forstærkninger: Lilly trækker sig tilbage til en nærliggende bjergskråning, og sværdmanden beordres til at trække sig tilbage. Jeg indrømmer tabet af Glacier Sock, men kun på en betingelse - spiderqueen skal garnisonere det selv. Lilly er nu beskyttet mod de fleste ydmyge enheder - hendes nye blokeringsevne kombineret med hendes første strejke -artefakt og min magi vil gøre hende modstandsdygtig over for de mest simple nærkamp- og missilangreb. Hun er virkelig ved at blive en sand helt.

Suk. Set i bakspejlet var min forsigtighed ved at nærme mig Durbin helt malplaceret - selvom selv en enkelt nymfe, der var stationeret der, ville have udgjort en dødelig trussel mod min fremadstormende vederstyggelighed, var det en risiko, jeg skulle have løbt, for at sikre, at mit raid kunne blive straks afgørende. Som det er, er alt, hvad jeg har opnået, at forsinke Serena lidt, mens hun styrker hendes kræfter. Flere erfaringer (måske får jeg en chance for at bruge alle disse lektioner i et andet liv? Jeg frygter, at min tid i denne inkarnation bliver kort).

Så det er tilbage til det samme spil - frenetisk at samle kræfter for at møde Serenas sydlige angreb, mens jeg i nord pligtskyldigt indtager Danny's Sock og hunker ned, alle tanker om forhånd og udnyttelse nu fjerne minder. Jeg har ledt efter en eller anden måde at vende tidevandet lige siden den sydlige katastrofe for næsten en uge siden, men intet har indtil videre fungeret, og druidernes udseende på slagmarken betyder, at Serena nu kan forstærkes så hurtigt som jeg kan. Grumt nyhed.

Lilly klatrer ned fra sin bjergpinde og stiller formel udfordring til spiderqueen og hendes følge for at sally frem og kæmpe.

Den sydlige koalitionsstyrke har omgrupperet sig og vil begynde sin sidste køretur til Darkelf -lander i morgen.

Efter en mærkelig administrationsfejl løfter byen Durbin endelig sit rette banner. Et vildsvin blev også set løbe ned ad byens gade. De sidste par dage har været hårde for disse fattige landsbyboere, så jeg har erklæret en ferie for Durbins fine folk - fri for bygning og produktion. De må hellere nyde det, mens de kan. . .

Alferne har endelig bemærket, at Durbins borgmester var en mørk nisse, og de har startet ham ud af kontoret. Jeg formoder, at det var for meget at håbe på, at situationen ville vare.

I Norden. det er mange druider. Tid til at forberede en overraskelse til Lilly.

Mens jeg er i syd, kommer jeg frem og tilbyder kamp til Serenas brogede horde.

Næsten glemt, en helt har besluttet at slutte sig til min sag. Nu synes hun, at jeg ligner en god karrieremulighed? Lad os håbe, at hun har mere styrke end forstand. Jeg sørger for, at hun underskriver en ansvarsfraskrivelse og accepterer derefter gerne hendes tjenester.

[Denne meddelelse er redigeret af JWorth (redigeret 05-11-2003 @ 23:08).]

Endnu en dag med død og ødelæggelse.

Anachra har sikret sin helt og bekymrer sig tilsyneladende ikke længere om ry. Uanset om det var trods eller desperation (eller begge dele) hendes tropper har fremmedgjort mennesker med ødelæggelsen af ​​Glacier. Spejdere rapporterer ingen overlevende eller tegn på de krigsforbrydere, der er ansvarlige for en sådan forsømmelig ødelæggelse. Spiderqueen tør ikke rejse alene, medmindre hun er på vej posthastet til hovedstaden. Men en ledsager ville bremse hende, så der er en god chance for at fange hende, hvis hun har været i området eller hendes tropper, hvis hun har forladt dem for hurtighed og sikkerheden i syden.

Den tredje dværgekspeditionsstyrke er begyndt at lede efter frivillige. Den ene overlevende fra den anden DEF fortæller om forunderlige kampe og heroiske gerninger - enhjørninger, fasede, sværd og økser flyver med dobbelt hastighed, Wizards sendt til tomrummet. Jeg forstærker hans ord med guld og løfter om ære og æresmedaljer. Jeg får ham til at vise sit modemærke ud af mig for hans personligt afsendelse af Arachna i tomrummet. Jeg føler mig hård og bitter, og frygter, at selv hvis jeg ville vinde den dag, det er lykkedes Arachna på en eller anden måde at overleve i mig. Jeg beder om, at udødeligheden af ​​min race tillader mig at overleve disse onde minder og mine smertefulde valg.

[Denne meddelelse er redigeret af Dafyth (redigeret 05-13-2003 @ 01:24).]

Guder, endnu et blodbad. Jeg troede faktisk, at min styrke var tilstrækkelig stærk til, at Serena ikke ville angribe. Endnu en lektion lært. I det mindste tog mine styrker mere end deres antal med sig til graven, og syd er endnu et standby.

I nord er jeg for svag til at holde for øjeblikket, men raiding er godt inden for min kapacitet, og min edderkoppedronning fanger landsbyen frostshire. Jeg formoder, at jeg ikke kan holde det længe, ​​men mit imperium har brug for hvert guldstykke, jeg kan finde.

Tomrummet er ved at blive et kendt sted. Min hovedstad er i hvert fald centralt placeret - hver ny død ser ud til at flytte mig tættere på den retning, hvor jeg alligevel planlagde at rejse.

Som jeg frygtede, undgik spiderqueen som sikkerheden i hendes rige og i stedet har indledt en svidd jordrampe. Jeg har brugt mine hurtigste kræfter til at svinge hende, men ikke før hun har tilføjet landskabet endnu en ruin. Tabet af Halfling -købmændene er et hårdt slag for min økonomi, og jeg kan kun håbe, at mine nuværende styrker i nord er nok til de kampe, der venter. I morgen skulle spiderqueen være væk for evigt, men hun vil have efterladt et grafskrift, der vil vare i evigheder.

Syd samler sig, og jeg lægger pres på midten. Forhåbentlig vil noget vige meget snart.

I should have put those halflings to the torch weeks ago, during my first occupation. As it is, they will not get the chance to celebrate my departure a second time, as my spider queen slaughters them to the last man, woman, and child. She herself faces a desperate fight in the morning, but I hope that she will inflict some damage before she falls -- her archer consorts were surprisingly effective at softening up Lilly's forces as they approached.

In the south, I retake a windmill and launch a scouting expedition to investigate Serena's defenses. The opening of the lake has rendered Pokt Island indefensible, I am afraid, and I abandon it to the elves. It will be interesting to see what they decide to do with it.

[This message has been edited by JWorth (edited 05-14-2003 @ 04:25 AM).]

Lilly drives a stake through the spiderqueen's black heart, ending that monster's reign of terror. There could be no victory whilst that one lived. Watching the corpse being engulfed by flames reminds me of all the terrible victories she had over my forces. Now, for the first time in the campaign, she has lost a battle. It so happens to be the last she'll ever lose as well this is a great omen and gives my army enormous hope. For all intents and purposes I own the North again and it is time to regroup and advance across the glacier. Already my forces fan out looking for stragglers and scouts while the Northern mine has again changed hands, hopefully for the last time.

Pokt island is spared the fate of the Human and Halfling settlements. It shall be turned into a vibrant Elven community of peace and prosperity.

Volunteers rush quickly to the rally point of the 3rd DEF. They are anxious to resume the march of the former expeditions, but the way is blocked with cavalry and Arachna's latest champion. A few more days and they will have sufficient might to begin new operations.

So, my strength in the north is finally spent. My one consolation is that Serena won't be recruiting any local reinforcements, as the settlements that once dotted the glacier are all in flames. Now, to see if I can gather sufficient strength to hold her marauding druids.

Meanwhile, in the south, the so-called 3rd DEF proves to be more bluster than might -- without the support of the elven menagerie, beserkers prove easier targets, though they do take my hero with them (her stay was so brief that I never even learned her name ). Still, the rest of my forces survive unscathed, and the Bayou is mine once again -- time to settle some old scores.

Oops, I should have sent the Druids down South to support my troops. By abandoning the impaler Arachna's high speed units cut through my poor defenders like a hot knife through butter. My only solace is that her last (and presumably final) hero was eliminated -- that removes Arachna's portable aura and seals both of our reputations.

I sense that this is the endgame. How ironic it would be if both human settlements go to ruin, and the battle comes down to Elf and Dwarf vs. Elf and Orc, North versus South, Good vs. Evil. The war has been so balanced throughout it will probably end the way that it began.

There's nothing more to be done to prepare. We await the approach of Serena's armies at High Pass. Either tomorrow or the day after will see a great battle.

Lilly and her glacier Druids arrive just a bit short to engage in battle today -- and my summon spell for another Unicorn depleted my mana. The portents say that a new morning is better for the inevitable conflict.

DEF 3.1 is on the move. Even though the front vanguard has been unceremoniously decimated, the fresh recruits march forth. Four Berserkers, a Druid and a Unicorn are 3 days out from the Bayou.

TS, I switched back to my work computer for the next few days.

My spider queen bought just enough time for me to work one, last, desperate casting. It's probably not enough to matter in the coming battle, but I greet Serena's approaching army with an infestation of poisonous vines. Looks like a few may perish outright, and all will be weakened in tomorrow's fight.

I sacrifice the last of my prisoners to the gods and go to bed. Now, truly, there is nothing for me to do but wait.

[This message has been edited by JWorth (edited 05-15-2003 @ 04:09 PM).]

Arachna continues to create unpleasant surprises. A Druid has been killed and all have been injuried in the unexpected poison plant attack. There is no way that my troops can stay in the area, and no way that they can attack in their weakened state. They must wait a day to heal, and to throw off the effects of that vile poison. I must also find a good way to put that day to good use. I believe I may have found the answer.

DEF 3.1 is now 2 days out from Bayou. The vice closes from both sides. The garrison is made up of disgruntled humans and other scrubs. With all of the morale problems the batle should be clean.

Hmm, I forgot to mention that my stock of casting points wasn't quite spent, last turn. Serena's army has moved in for a direct assault -- conveniently leaving them exposed in the open plain. Lets see how they like a second dose of those poisonous plants.

Yes, that's much better . I still don't like my chances if they choose to assault, next turn -- though I've been waiting for a chance to see my fancy new tower guard in action -- but it's not inconceivable that I could survive. So, I make preparations elsewhere for a long campaign (as if this struggle hasn't gone on long enough) -- time to put the Bayou to the torch. I can't take the risk that Serena's announcements are mere bluff, and her druid is deadly real. Farewell, humans.

Now, if I had razed Durbin a few days ago, I might even like my chances. if only I can survive for another day.

Restart for no reason that I can tell. Sorry blech -- that's twice now I'm defragging tonight and keeping my fingers crossed.

[This message has been edited by JWorth (edited 05-15-2003 @ 10:52 PM).]

Well, I guess the big secret is out -- Arachna has casting specialist 4. That's a poison plants spell every turn.

Far from being over, the war seems to be just beginning -- just on a new level.

Time to regroup and rebuild.

TS, restart as I switched back to my home PC (no battles this turn, for obvious reasons).

Stepping out of character for a minute. lol. I can't believe that we're still slugging away. this map is amazing.

Ahem. Today was a good day . The sickly remnants of Serena's army huddle by the lakeside, trying to flee my poisonous wrath. Sadly, I can't hit them with another casting -- despite appearances, I only have casting I, and the pre-prepared spell strategem requires time to recharge. So I order my last pair of cavalry to pursue the elven survivors -- Lilly, 2 druids, a unicorn and a boar (captured by Serena a long time ago), all on their last legs -- while I cast stoning spells from a distance. My cavalry fall, but only Lilly is left standing when the fight is done, and I then enter the fray personally (with better results than the last three times ) and slay her myself.

For the first time in longer than I can remember, there are no immediate threats to my kingdom, and I take stock of the overall situation. Serena and I both hold three towns (why, oh why, didn't I grab the chance to raze Durban!), and, while the elves have the advantage in mines and nodes, that will soon be rectified. Most significantly, now that there are no intermediate towns from which to stage attacks, our bases are a long way apart from each other. My real problem is Serena's total command of the lake, which will keep me in a defensive posture until I can somehow wrest it away.

I retire to ponder the problem. Perhaps I should simply dispatch an envoy to Serena and offer to share rulership of this land?

and, of course, another restart . I have no idea why really annoying to get one on a turn with fighting. Undskyld.

[This message has been edited by JWorth (edited 05-16-2003 @ 05:46 AM).]

So much for regroup and rebuild -- there's nothing to regroup anymore. Rebuilding is the key, and I need to do it wisely as I have a long struggle ahead.

My people continue to amaze me. On the brink of destruction, Avernus comes to offer aid. I gladly accept, and begin planning anew.

A few of Lilly's remaining followers sneak out of the forest and recover her body. They find the perfect funeral pyre with which to return her to the gods. They slink back into the foliage, awaiting further acts of revenge. With them they take her ashes, should the means to resurrect her ever be obtained.

TS, restart for no known reason.

[This message has been edited by Dafyth (edited 05-16-2003 @ 12:28 PM).]

Av. Ouch ouch ouch. Curse me for an over-confident fool -- I didn't even consider that the two missing druids might be out there in the bush somewhere, and I paid the price. I really hope that the famed ai tracking avengers can succeed where my archer failed, or this is going to be an ongoing problem.

Time to rebuild. Suk. Now I'm scrambling again, and the dark elves are no more. I'll have to appoint a new, orcish royal council -- I'm not looking forward to that orcs are notoriously ill-behaved in committees. Still, at least I'm alive and (barely) in the fight, which is better than I looked forward to only a few days ago.

And the frontiers seem deserted -- two nodes and a mine fell to my scouts today. Small comfort.

oh, almost forgot, another restart, for no apparent reason. At least there was no fighting this turn. I'm going to try reinstalling.

[This message has been edited by JWorth (edited 05-16-2003 @ 05:50 PM).]

Mostly a day of planning and building, and enjoying the thought that Arachna's next trip to the void will be her last until she secures a Wizard Tower.

Plan B, though an improvement over plan A, still resulted in the entire destruction of my invading forces. I need a strong force with some lasting power and some serious backup magic. Time for plan C.

I also continue my frantic efforts to rebuild. Now that Serena has seen the last trick (well, maybe almost the last. ) in my arsenal, I know that I won't catch the elves by surprise so easily again, and I only barely survived their last onslaught.

Hmm. the avengers are acting like they can't get the scent. Is it possible that Serena disbanded her last, almost-dead, druid in the area? I can't imagine why she would do such a thing, but avengers are famous for being able to track any foe, no matter how well hidden. I suppose I'll find out the truth soon enough.

Things are quiet -- perhaps a little too quiet. Scouts are quietly sent out to re-explore the glacier, and DEF 3.1 examines the ruins of the Bayou.

I was afraid that the angry citizens from Arachna's erstwhile capital would be recruitable by her, and I am please to see that this is not the case. If my Druid can frustrate their search long enough, perhaps they will turn on Arachna to vent their rage for failing to protect their home?

Plan C has begun, and it is off to a good start.

TS with a restart message (but only on my side this time)

I can only guess as to this "plan C", but I'm sure I won't like it. Could use a little luck right about now.

Scouts took another mine. Nothing else of interest, besides frantic preparations for the next elven onslaught.

It is time to fight magic with magic. Arachna s poison plant attack made very clear that brute strength and simple cantrips will not win the day. I must use my magic as well.

I call upon the heroes of old to aid me in my time of need. Ham has responded, and in lieu of gold he spends a little time dallying with a nymph. I save my coin for Elme and Lilly, who will not succumb to such simple pleasures. Should enemy heroes appear, my nymphs will be used again.

There are some very brave (or insane) boars running about, and my Druids have taken notice. The boar in the South has mysteriously disappeared, but I hope that it now resides in the bellies of the Human avengers. The one in the North will be dealt with shortly.

A day of aggressive patrolling, establishing perimeters, and more frenzied rebuilding. Also, of wishing that there was a "burn forest" command in this game .


Bastion - The Drowned Lands. A new Domain of Dread featuring an Inquisition, witchcraft, social decay, and zombies. Gothic horror and folk horror themes.

Hey folks, DM Tool Chest here again. Went with something a bit different this time with a Domain of Dread constructed in the exact same format as the ones provided in Van Richten's Guide to Ravenloft. You can find some of our previous posts here:

The Domain of Drowned Despair

Darklord: Octavia Lafont

Genres: Gothic Horror and Folk Horror

Hallmarks: Inquisition, witchcraft, social decay, zombies

Mist Talismans: Sackcloth doll stuck with pins, rusty thumbscrew, broken planchette

Perpetual twilight blankets the rotting corpse of what was once the proud nation of Bastion. Fields that were once ripe with wheat and grain have become encroaching swamps filled with monstrous creatures waiting for any foolish enough to step from the safety of the village walls. Twisted vines hang from rotting branches, ready to lash out at the unwary. At first glance, the town buildings and citizens appear decadent and luxurious, exquisitely built and elegant. A second quickly reveals the rot and decay, the flaking paint, and stained clothing. Those who live here know that appearances are deceiving, and the masks one wears are just as important as what they hide.

The occasional scream that echoes across the swamps may equally be the sound of a predator’s successful hunt or the bait they are using to draw in bigger prey. Twisted creations of feathers, twigs, and bone hang from moss-covered tree branches, the only warning of a hunting ground of one of the many horrors that stalk the wetlands. Undead zombies lurch from the waters, risen by witch covens that seek to tear down the last vestiges of civilization in this rotting land. Nightmare horrors ambush the unwary who risk the travel ways, disappearing back into the waters of the swamps with their prizes.

Basion is the home of the Iron Inquisition, led by the Darklord and High Inquisitor Octavia Lafont, who seeks to eradicate magic—both arcane and divine—along with those who practice it. The citizenry spends their days with forced smiles, never knowing when they will be arrested and brought in for confession. No amount of protestations are enough once the accusation is made, and all trials end with a death sentence—to be burned alive at the stake. Neighbors are forced into strained politeness at all times for fear of pointed fingers, giving the illusion of a gentrified and polite society. Even the slightest hint of magic is enough to bring the Inquisition’s wrath, burning everything—and everyone—in its path.

Bastion is also home to the twisted monstrosities born out of Octavia Lafont’s greatest fears. Witch covens and horrifying creatures fill the swamps, regularly attacking travelers and dragging their victims back to join their undead ranks. The Inquisition struggles to hold back the tide of monsters while the citizens spend their nights celebrating by the firelight of pyres burning those accused of witchcraft.

Those familiar with Bastion know the following facts:

Magic is illegal, and anyone caught using it will be reported to the Inquisition for trial.

There are no cities and few settlements in Bastion they eventually sink into the ever-growing swamps, leaving creature-filled ruins spread across the land. The largest settlement is the town of Saint-Delphine, where the Iron Inquisition makes its headquarters.

The Inquisition is the highest authority in the land, and the few remaining nobles tread lightly around them out of fear of being put to the torch. Each settlement is appointed a Lord Inquisitor who acts as judge and jury, and their word is the law.

The Inquisition is constantly recruiting those brave enough to enter the swamps in search of nests of witches to destroy or ruins to clear of monsters.

Citizens live in constant fear of the monsters in the swamps and the towns. Most avoid getting involved with any situations that would draw unwanted attention their way.

Politeness and maintaining appearances are essential in Bastion. The finest gowns and coats are worn at all times, even if they are the only garments owned. This veneer of a polite and sophisticated society masks the undercurrent of constant terror.

Superstition is rife among the citizenry, and many secretly carry charms and totems in hopes that they ward off the attention from the Inquisitors or the darkness from the swamps, even though they know it is often used as evidence against them if discovered.

Bastionese Characters (Sidebar)

Characters from Bastion might be disillusioned former Inquisitors, orphaned children of the accused, or hiding their newfound magical abilities from the law. Much of the primarily human populace possess dark hair and pale skin from lack of sunlight, typically hiding behind an abundance of facepaint and rouge. Their attire tends to be fanciful, no matter the occasion. Names often take influence from French and Creole inspiration. When players create characters from Bastion, ask them the following questions.

What was your life like in Bastion? Were you the child of a noble, peasant, or orphan? Did you grow up in the swamps or behind the walls of the villages? Did someone in your life vanish into the swamps or was taken by the Inquisition?

What superstitions do you cling to? Is there something you do or say to ward off the evil eye or unwanted attention? Do you carry a token or lucky charm with you? Do you see signs and warnings in the world around you?

How do you feel about magic? Are you uncomfortable around magic? Do you embrace or reject friendship with magic users? How do you feel about using magic items?

Bastion is a twilight realm of decay and despair. The fetid swamps have swallowed most of the countryside, and formerly thriving towns are now ruins dotting the land. Survivors huddle in the settlements, afraid to leave the safety of the firelight for fear of what lurks in the misty shadows.

Overgrown with razor vines and thick vegetation, this hilly swamp lies just to the north of the village of Bonchon. Unlike most of the wetlands in Bastion—which buzz and hum with the sounds of the creatures crawling through them— these glades are silent. The site of a significant battle of centuries past, the bones of ancient warriors come alive with the dark energy that permeates the waters. The bones of a dragon felled long ago are working their way slowly through the earth, jutting from the hillside as a visible warning to the nearby town that their doom is coming.

There have been sightings of a giant creature with twisted horns breathing fire that roams the glades, burning alive any unlucky soul who stumbles across its path. An undead creature born from the dark energies, the locals named it the Umbrabeast, and they fear the day it leaves the glades.

Marseu is a rundown village in the northwestern corner of Bastion. The homes here were hastily built by the survivors of the fall of Leyonne after the Dark Powers brought them here through the mists. Many of the buildings were constructed from the stones of the ruins just to the west. It is the most common settlement for mist travelers to find when stepping out of the mists due to its proximity to the border—most wind up in the swamps and the gullets of the monsters living there.

The poor locals vainly try to keep up the appearances of polite society instead of a backwater swamp village. The Iron Inquisition has a smaller presence here than the other settlements, but it has no less of a hold on the citizens. The Lord Inquisitor Jacob Hellsmoth is a cynical military leader who does what he can to defend the town from the regular attacks of witch covens and undead.

Prig’s Bog is named for the mad hermit that makes his home in this small corner of the swamps. Once known as Prince Rigly Bastion, youngest son and only surviving member of the royal family, Prig is now a shell of the man he once was. He lost his mind long ago after being driven mad by the horrors he experienced in the swamps. Prig now rules over a small clan that makes their homes in ramshackle huts in the bog. They all share in Prig’s madness and his newfound taste for human flesh. These backcountry cannibals roam the swamps with rusted blades in hand, hunting for fresh meat.

The stone-walled town of Saint-Delphine is the largest settlement in Bastion and the seat of Octavia Lefont’s power. The town looks over the grim waters of the Blackmire Swamp and Jade Cove. A large field just outside the northern walls is filled with the bones and bodies of both undead and Inquisitor from their regular clashes. The Baronesse Georgette Forest is the noble owner of the land and town but is no more than a puppet for the Inquisition. Saint-Delphine was once a wealthy town built on a solid merchant trade, and the architecture, public gardens, and grand theaters reflect its former sophistication. It’s now covered in a decrepit veneer and a rotten shadow of what it once was. The Baronesse spends her time and money on elaborate public galas and performances at her estate, the Chateau Bittencourt, to keep the citizens distracted from the horrors around them. These festivities also help drown out the screams of the souls condemned to burn at the stake.

Many occultists and mediums secretly conduct business in the town through underground black markets, providing totems and charms to the locals. Seances are very popular, and speakeasy-style salons are hidden throughout the town. Many of these salons are also fronts for an underground railroad network. The agents smuggle people and goods out of the town and to a supposed haven in the swamps.

Mama Marie-Antoinette Benoit is the popular owner of The Silver Rose Tavern and Inn, a favorite local hangout. She is also an occult leader who secretly runs seances and rituals for the locals in a hidden basement under her tavern. Mama Marie-Antoinette has been fighting against the Iron Inquisition as best she can, smuggling refugees out of the town and to a haven she has made on Blackmire Isle.

Octavia Lefont grew up poor in the small Bastionese village of Leyonne with her parents, who traded in herbs and potions. As a young child, she was blissfully ignorant of her lowly station in life and happily helped her mother pick the forest plants her father would then turn into minor alchemical potions and healing poultices. That happiness was shattered the day the Iron Inquisition came to Bastion, spreading its fear and hatred of magic. All manner of problems the locals were experiencing, whether bad weather or sudden illnesses, were laid at the feet of those who practiced the dark arts of magic. At first, they were ignored. When the plague came to Bastion, the Inquisition's numbers and influence grew, and soon neighbors turned against each other, brothers against sisters, and wives against husbands. The population was decimated, and the Inquisition stepped in as saviors.

It was not long before Octavia found herself an orphan, her parents arrested, charged, and found guilty of witchcraft. Taken in as a ward of the High Inquisitor and raised as his daughter. Under his tutelage, the love she once had for her parents was turned to disgust and hate, believing them to have been twisted monsters who practiced dark magic on her. As Octavia grew older and the Inquisition more powerful, she soon became a true fanatic, devoted to its cause and working her way through the ranks. After the death of her adopted father, she was raised to High Inquisitor as his heir.

Under Octavia’s leadership, the fires of the Inquisition were lit anew in Bastion. The skies were filled with burning ashes and the screams of those she condemned to the stake. She was standing in the charred husk of the village she was raised in, watching her men light the pyres under a dozen screaming peasants when the Dark Powers caused the mists to come to Bastion and reshape the land. Wherever the ashes fell, the plant life began to rot and decay quickly, and the earth started to soften underfoot.

Octavia believes the land to be under a magical assault that turned Bastion’s lush fields into rotting swamps and flooded forests. The Inquisitors now root through the populace, seeking to punish those who brought them into this hellscape. Determined to stamp out opposition to her authority, Octavia chooses to ignore the fact that the faces of the horrors of the forest resemble those she condemned to the fires. She has no care for truth or evidence, seeking only the purity of the fire as her answer to every problem, burning her way through the population one by one.

Octavia’s Powers and Dominion

Octavia Lefont is a capable military commander with statistics similar to a gladiator. She carries a brace of four pistols at all times with which she is proficient. While a talented warrior, her true power lies in her command of a rabidly loyal and fanatic army of Inquisitors that obey her every command. The High Inquisitor is rarely alone and fiercely protected by her loyalist guards. In the rare instance that her defenses are breached, the Dark Powers have given her the ability to innately summon an aura around herself once per day that acts as an anti-magic field spell lasting 1 hour without the need for concentration. She believes this ability to prove that she is the rightful leader of the Inquisition and her cause is worthy.

The Iron Inquisition. While it is not an overwhelmingly large force, the Iron Inquisition nevertheless has a stranglehold on the power in Bastion. The nobles have their guard forces, but there hasn’t been a standing military force left in Bastion after the plague decimated the populace. While the citizens fear them, they also know the Inquisition is the only thing protecting them from the horrors of the swamps. The Inquisitor soldiers use the guard stat block, and Lord Inquisitors are knights. Every Inquisitor wears an Inquisitor’s Mask (see Appendix) to protect them from magic users.

Anti-Magic Laws. The use of magic or magic items is illegal and punishable by death in Bastion. Anyone caught using or accused of using magic will be arrested and brought before the local Lord Inquisitor for summary trial and sentencing to the stake. The executions are made public for all to bear witness and are now a celebrated spectacle by the people, even if only for the simple fact that it is not themselves about to be set ablaze.

Closing the Borders. Octavia does not have the power to open or close her domain’s borders, so they remain open at all times. Few dare the attempt, and even fewer manage to make it through the monsters that wander the mists. The occasional traveler makes their way to Bastion, finding themselves suddenly waist-deep in a rotting swamp or walking down the lit cobblestone streets of Saint-Delphine.

Octavia Lefont’s fanaticism knows no bounds, and she spends each day firmly believing herself to be close to finally eradicating magic once and for all in Bastion. The Dark Powers torment her by bringing her victims back in the form of monsters that haunt the swamps, building up until they attack a settlement en masse and swallowing it into the swamps. Octavia knows that the people fear her and hide behind niceties and revels in her power to force them to behave, even if it's through fear. Octavia’s extreme paranoia and regular nightmares have made her a gaunt figure, almost skeletal, but the fire of her fanaticism sustains and strengthens her body. She feels reinforced with every pyre she orders lit, ignoring that unshakable feeling that it also seals her doom.

Octavia is ruled by her fanaticism and paranoia, only leaving the Inquisition headquarters in Saint-Delphine to observe the executions in the Field of Atonement from the town’s walls. She values competency and people of action, abhorring the tedious paperwork and bureaucracy she’s forced to deal with as the High Inquisitor. With the ever-present threat of the encroaching swamps, she is constantly looking for those willing to enter and complete her goals. Octavia believes that her situation results from a powerful magic user somewhere in the region and offers great rewards for those who can bring them to her.

Personality Trait. “I do only what I must for the greater good of all. Only I can guide this nation on the path of righteousness.”

Ideal. “Once the realm is cleansed of magic, I will lead the people into a new era of peace and prosperity.”

Bond. “It is my sacred duty to protect my people from the plague that is magic. I must purge it from the land for them to truly be free.”

Flaw. “If innocents are sometimes killed, they are the sacrifice that must be made.”

Bastion is a setting where gothic horror and folk horror collide. The town of Saint-Delphine and its Inquisition provide characters opportunities to delve into the darker side of Bastion’s political and social troubles. They may find themselves engaging in the local activities—masquerades, galas, and theatrical performances—being held as the citizens attempt to ignore the horrors of the swamps around them. These inevitably are entwined with secret cultists, lycanthropes, and witches hiding within the populace. There is an opportunity to find a way to smuggle out those peacefully trying to exist or even join the inquisition and hunt down those preying in the shadows. Magic may be illegal, but it is still found in abundance through back channels and a strong following in the occult.

The swamps provide a breeding ground for many different types of atrocities that stalk in the perpetual twilight that blankets the domain. The undead roam freely without fear of the sunlight that never makes its way to this realm. Swamp hags raising undead from the swamp waters, zombie wolves stalking through the forests, backcountry cannibals hunting the travel ways, and a fire-breathing moose provide a litany of dangers. An abundance of ruins, sunken caves, and hidden treasures can be found throughout the swamps and bayous. Some citizens are even willing to risk the dangers of the swamps instead of living under the Inquisitions rule.

When building adventures in Bastion, consider the motivations of the characters and how they either align or conflict with the Inquisitions’ goals. Characters may find themselves working with the Inquisitors against the monsters in the swamps and while at the same time secreting magic users to a safe haven.

Consider the plots in the Bastion Adventures table when planning adventures in this domain.

1 The characters are enlisted as guards on a supply caravan headed through Devil’s Run, where zombies of all types are known to emerge from the swamps.

2 Locals in Lejeune have been disappearing, and the Inquisition hires the characters to investigate. They discover a seamstress named Marie-Louise has been promising a haven only to lead her victims to her cannibal family’s cabin in the bayou.

3 Baroness Georgette Forest is hosting a gala, and the characters are invited to attend. The acrobat troupe hired to perform are replaced by doppelgangers sent by witches to assassinate the Lord Inquisitor, who is also in attendance.

4 Mama Marie-Antoinette Benoit is a beloved local healer who is secretly the occultist leader of an underground railroad in Saint-Delphine. The Inquisition is starting to get suspicious, and she needs help escorting a group of refugees to her hidden camp on Blackmire Isle.

5 The Inquisition is set to execute a dozen people convicted of witchcraft. The young daughter of one of them pleads with the characters to rescue her father. The child turns out to be the homunculus pet of the only actual witch in the group.

6 A zombie army is ready to wipe through the village of Marseau. The local Inquisition forces are too few to handle such a large-scale attack and need the characters’ assistance in preparing defenses.

7 The waters of Blackmire Swamp bubble and erupt as an undead black dragon emerges from the fetid waters and begins to attack Saint-Delphine.

8 A decadent masquerade full of acrobats and musical entertainment is being held outdoors on Saint-Delphine’s main thoroughfare. A gang of vampire thieves is preying on the attendees, and one is forced to kill when it is accidentally unmasked.

9 The Inquisitors in Grael have determined the location of a hideout of magic users in the nearby swamps. They hire the characters to escort their messenger through Devil’s Run to request reinforcements from Saint-Delphine.

10 The party learns of a possible cache of magic weapons hidden somewhere in a half-sunken fort in the former town of Darois. The ruins are said to be haunted by a banshee and other spirits of the former residents.

The central theme running through Bastion is the ever-present sense of pressure from all sides. The domain is both literally drowning as it sinks into the swamps and figuratively in the despair of its people. The Darklord Octavia Lefont is the anchor weighing the domain down, pulling it into the sea of her fanaticism and drowning it in her oppression. This pressure is presented as obstacles the characters can address in multiple ways, but like in all horror situations, the more one struggles, the worse it becomes. There is always a negative counter that the domain throws back at them for every success the characters may have. For example, for every refugee that the characters protect, twice as many are burned by the Iron Inquisition.

Bottomless swamps and impenetrable undergrowth grow thick across Bastion, and characters who attempt to explore the domain will be forced to stick to the travel ways or risk the dangers within. Maps of the realm can be purchased at any settlement, but most only show the travel ways as few locals dare to step into the swamps.

The domain’s swamps and forests are difficult terrain, reducing a party’s travel pace by half. This means that characters can move through most of the domain at a normal pace of 1.5 miles per hour and 12 miles per day. Characters can move at a fast or slow pace, with effects as outlined in the PHB.

Horses are rare in the swamps and are twice as expensive as normal to purchase at 100 gp each. Peasants more commonly use donkeys for their carts. A ride on a horse-drawn carriage between towns can be bought for 20 gp. They travel at fast paces and still run the risks of those creatures that hunt the travel ways.

Built on fanaticism steeped in a burning hatred of magic, the Inquisition seeks to destroy magic in all its forms. Led by the Darklord Octavia Lefont, these soldiers patrol the streets and keep an ever-alert watch for any sign of witchcraft. Each Inquisitor hides their face behind an Inquisitor’s Mask (see Appendix) that helps protect their identities as well as from magic users. They justify the use of the magical masks as necessary to fight fire with fire. Only Octavia keeps her face bare to the world without fear as the High Inquisitor. The Inquisitors operate a quasi-secret police force, raiding suspected magic users' homes and workplaces and arresting them.

Witchcraft and occultism play a heavy role in the Bastion social setting. This translates to spell components used by locals, including hand-crafted items such as totems, hex bags, and charms made from feathers, bones, and other natural materials. A cauldron and herb rack is a typical setup for alchemical creations. Occult symbols are hidden in jewelry and everyday wear to hide them from the Inquisitors and still satisfy the highly superstitious nature of the populace. Bastion has no gods, and occult mediums fill the role of spiritual leaders. Through rituals and seances, they speak with the dead for guidance, perform last rites for those who have passed, and create the charms and tokens the locals rely on for protection.

There is a distinct separation between the spiritual occultists and the devil-pacted witches (see provided stat blocks in Appendix. The occultists are mediums between the spiritual world and the material plane, with abilities and powers similar to a cleric. They conduct seances in the hidden smokey salons and speak with the dead. The witches of Bastion have gained their powers through dark pacts with archdevils and granted magic in the same way as a warlock. Both are persecuted, hunted down, and burned at the stake if caught by the Iron Inquisition, who does not care about their differences.

The occultists can craft many supernatural charms, and examples can be found in the Occultists Charms section (see Appendix). These can be given by locals as rewards but must be kept hidden.

The witch covens that live in Bastion’s swamps are waging war with the Iron Inquisition. They use their powers to amass armies of undead beasts to strike at the settlements and attack travelers on the road to add to their ranks. Often led by night hags who build the coven for those witches that escape the stake, these groups are no less militant than the Inquisitors. Their creations often come in nightmare versions of undead dire animals stitched together in horrific ways. At least once a month, these covens assault one of the outlying villages or Saint-Delphine.

This appendix describes some of the new creatures, NPCs, and magic items found in Bastion.

Raised on the traditions and rituals of the occult practices, these mediums are a conduit between the material plane and the spirit realm. Tapping into these energies gives Occultists a view of the world beyond that of an average person. They can see signs and portents in weather patterns, through tarot readings, and communing with the dead through seances.

As spiritual leaders for their community, they provide comfort and aid as healers. They also assist in warding off evil through the creation of charms and amulets.

Mediums. Occultists regularly conduct seances to commune with the deceased for guidance. They have a natural ability to calm the spirits of the dead to gain helpful information.

Charm Crafters. Tapping into the spiritual plane while crafting charms allows Occultists to imbue them with supernatural power.

This section describes several new supernatural charms that the occultists in Bastion can bestow using their Charm Crafting ability.

Charm of the Strong Heart. A thin silver link necklace with an engraved locket that is warm to the touch. Inside is a charm made of a raven’s still living heart bound in gold wire. While wearing this charm, you gain advantage on your next Constitution saving throw, after which the heart shrivels to dust.

Charm of the Reaper. A small quartz vial holds a mercurial red liquid inside that evaporates the instant air touches it, impotently releasing its power prematurely. While in possession of this charm, you automatically succeed on your next death saving throw, after which the vial crumbles to dust.

Charm of the Swamp Walker. This charm is made of a shriveled three-clawed chicken foot, wrapped in twine with feathers and beads. This charm has 3 charges. As an action, you can expend 1 of the charm’s charges to gain the following benefits for 24 hours:

• You and your allies within 15 feet of you ignore difficult terrain caused by swamps.

• You are immune to the frightened condition.

As each charge is expended, one of the chicken claws shrivels off the foot. When all charges are spent, the charm crumbles to dust.

Charm of the Evil Eye. A stylized eye made from gold and silver wire with a small blue stone as the iris. While wearing this charm, you can give yourself resistance to psychic damage as an action. This benefit lasts for 24 hours, after which the charm crumbles to dust.

Charm of the Zombie. A shrunken head with its eyes and mouth stitched closed with thick black thread. While in possession of this charm, you can take an action to cast raise dead (zombie only), no components required, after which the head shrivels to dust.

Witches gain their powers through making deals with devils and other dark patrons. In exchange for their services (and often their souls), these practitioners of the dark arts gain access to magical abilities and spells. They often form close groups called covens, working together to perform even more powerful spells and incantations.

Coven. A coven of witches shares their strength, combining their powers and tapping into spells ordinarily unavailable to them.

Hexes. The hex of a witch is a powerful curse, draining those afflicted of their strength until it can be removed.

NEW MAGIC ITEMInquisitor's Mask

Adventuring gear (mask), uncommon (requires attunement)

This stylized iron mask fits across the wearer’s eyes, obscuring their face but providing unobstructed sight. While wearing this mask, you gain darkvision out to 30 feet if you do not have it already. This mask has 3 charges and regains all expended charges at dawn. As a reaction, you can choose to expend a charge to cast absorb elements, no components required.


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