Houses of The Dark Elves (COMPLETED)

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Re: Houses of The Dark Elves (Sheoloth game line)

Postby The Wolf » Fri Apr 25, 2014 7:58 am

I'll be back working on this one next week.
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Re: Houses of The Dark Elves (Sheoloth game line)

Postby The Wolf » Wed Apr 30, 2014 9:10 am

House Kolnahos

House Features:
• All dark elves of House Kolnahos begin play with a trained slave, this NPC will never be disloyal to their house (unless the story warrants it of course) and will die to protect their master. +20% House Bonus to Intimidation skill, +15% Lore (Animal Training) skill House Bonus and +25% Craft skill House Bonus.
House Skills: The house offers training in the following skills: Intimidation, Influence, Evaluate, Lore (Animal Training), Craft (any skill), Resilience, and Commerce
Favoured Occupation: Slave Trader (Sheoloth)
Predominant Religions: Polshoath
Heroic Abilities: Poison Immunity, Disease Immunity, Tireless
House Magic: Animate (Steel), Animate (Stone), Diminish (STR), Dominate (Goblinoids), Dominate (dark elves), Holdfast, Wrack, Palsy

House Ranks
Novice
The novice is a barely trusted member of the house, they have a lot to prove before they become an initiate and rise in the ranks. They need to have successfully owned and tortured a slave before they even get a chance.
Initiate
The initiate needs to have Intimidation at 35%, and at least four other house skills at 40%. A fellow house member must sponsor them to the next rank.
Flesh Peddler
A flesh peddler needs the Intimidation skill at 45%, and four other house skills at 50%. A fellow house member must sponsor them to the next rank. They must also have owned and sold 5-8 slaves in the past.
Slaver
Slavers of the house are well trained in the arts of intimidation, therefore they require the Intimidation skill at 60%, four other house skills at 55%. They must have owned 4-50 slaves to even be considered to join the Master Slaver. Selling a great number of them in past will help their chances.
Master Slaver
The Master Slaver is a master of coercion through force, thus they require the Intimidation skill at 90% and four other house skills at 85%.

House Merezzym

House Features:
• Due to the intense cold of their home, all dark elves of this house have developed incredible tolerances to non-magical cold. They take no damage from any source of non-magic cold. They gain a +20% House Bonus to the skills: Survival, Swim and Track.
House Skills: The house offers training in the following skills: Brawn, First Aid, Influence, Perception, Stealth, Swim, Survival, Track
Favoured Occupation: Explorer
Predominant Religions: Nazrakoth
Heroic Abilities: Born to the Saddle, Tireless, Loremaster
House Magic: Damage Resistance, Enhance (STR), Enhance (DEX), Enhance (CON), Telepathy

House Ranks
Novice
The novice is a wet-behind-the-ears member of the house, trusted with only a few menial tasks and usually sent out on short patrols, minor skirmishes. A higher member of the house can sponsor a novice to rise to initiate, usually if they see potential. It has been known for family ties to have a greater effect on the aspirant’s chances.
Minor Noble
Minor nobles of the house need five house skills at 40% and a noble sponsor to qualify for this rank, they also require a High Noble to ascend to the rank of noble.
Noble
Nobles require five house skills at 50% and two sponsors of the Grand Nobility to become a High Noble.
High Noble
High Nobles require 80% in Courtesy and five house skills at 70%. They cannot become Grand Nobles unless a lengthy quest is first undertaken, or a great beast of the frozen north is slain and the hide brought to the Grand Nobles.
Grand Noble
These are the top rulers of the house, they require Courtesy at 90% and five other house skills at 85%.
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Re: Houses of The Dark Elves (Sheoloth game line)

Postby The Wolf » Thu May 01, 2014 10:07 am

House Pelshothe

House Features:
• The house has a moratorium on the use of metal weapons and armour, a dark elf this house is forbidden to use such things or faces expulsion (or worse) for their transgressions. Members of this house gain a +25% House Bonus to the skills: Evaluate, Insight, and Commerce.
• Members of this house gain a +3 Bonus to their CHA stat.
House Skills: The house offers training in the following skills: Style, Craft (Any), Evaluate, Perception, Any Weapon Skill, Commerce, Courtesy, and Streetwise.
Favoured Occupation: Craftsman
Predominant Religions: Olyet’Naru
Heroic Abilities: Loremaster, Duellist, Severing Slash
House Magic: Animate (Ceramic), Animate (Stone), Fly, Form/Set (Clay), Form/Set (Ceramic), Form/Set (Stone), Teleport, Wrack

House Ranks
Novice
Novices need to be able to craft a simple item to be eligible for the rank of novice. They must be promoted by a Master only.
Apprentice
Apprentices are good with trade and craft, therefore require 35% in Craft (Any), and 40% in Commerce. They require three other house skills at 35%. Promotion comes from the Masters of the house. They must have crafted four simple items and sold at least one.
Journeyman
A journeyman needs Craft (Any) at 50%, and 55% in Commerce. They require three other house skills at 40%. They must have crafted five simple items, one complex item (like a hand crossbow) and sold at least half of what they’ve crafted. Promotion comes from the Masters of the house.
Master
Masters are the master traders and crafters of the house, so their skills are exemplary. They require 75% in Craft (Any), and Commerce, as well as three other house skills at 70%. They must have a steady flow of simple and complex items and must have sold items of any kind regularly, including trading with other races and establishing at least one trade contact per year. Promotion can only come from the Grand Masters of the house.
Grand Master
These are the movers and shakers of the house, they require Craft (Any) at 95% and Commerce at 90%. They must have three house skills at 85% and have crafted items of incredible worth, selling regularly and establishing trade contacts as well as trade routes with other traders/people of the depths.
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Re: Houses of The Dark Elves (Sheoloth game line)

Postby The Wolf » Thu May 01, 2014 12:20 pm

Update: As of now - all the 10 dark elf houses are done and in the book, using the faction rules. Now onto the other factions and writing a bit about how a GM can use them to harass players ;)
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Re: Houses of The Dark Elves (Sheoloth game line)

Postby The Wolf » Thu May 01, 2014 12:28 pm

Prime_Evil wrote:I think that for those factions offered as potential adversaries, three things are necessary:
  • Both the long-term goals and immediate short-term objectives of the faction need to be clear to ensure that the GM understands them. Personally, I'd be tempted to list them in bullet point format to keep them brief.
  • The methods used by the faction to pursue their objectives need to be outlined. Don't go into too much detail, but give the GM something to work with. You can sometimes create interesting factions by having a mismatch between the faction's goals and their methods - maybe the organization uses dirty methods to achieve desirable goals or operates within the rules while pursuing a nasty objective. For example, imagine a group of cultists who maintain a respectable public image while attempting to awaken an evil Lovecraftian entity from aeons of slumber...
  • Finally, the resources that the faction can throw at rivals and enemies need to be described. Remember that some factions will have a mixture of public and covert resources.
It looks like for a lot of the factions, like the Seekers for example, that work's already been done and baked into the flavour text. I'll be going through them to edit and revise as needed, but so far, so good. This will certainly cut down the amount of work needed to get the book text finished and speed the process up considerably.
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Re: Houses of The Dark Elves (Sheoloth game line)

Postby The Wolf » Mon May 12, 2014 6:11 am

Just an update, I'm now onto the minor factions in this book and then I'll be looking at the Game of Bones to round it out.

I've decided that I'd rather present the gods and magic of the dark elves as a seperate tome so I can add a few extra twists to dark elf magic at the same time.
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Re: Houses of The Dark Elves (Sheoloth game line)

Postby The Wolf » Tue May 13, 2014 10:08 am

Dark Fey
More nomadic even than House Devoren, the loose association of dark elves known collectively as the Dark Fey wander the Underdeep unconstrained by any sense of civilisation, turning from away from dark elven society to embrace the ancient roots of their race.

Background
The Dark Fey are the true free spirits of the dark elves, dark elves who have abandoned the culture of their people and sought instead a return to the fae roots of their people. Unburdened and unbounded by culture, society and civilisation, they have embraced chaos and disorder.

There are those who argue the Dark Fey have always been present, part and parcel of the dark elves and a throwback to their fey heritage. Others argue the Dark Fey are a more recent development. Many believe they not what they seem to be at all, but instead are an aspect of the Darkling Sky (see page XX), determined to lure dark elves away from proper worship of the dark elven pantheon.

One reason there is so much confusion about the Dark Fey is because of the very nature of its people. They are predisposed to tricks, lies and deceit, with just enough truth thrown in to make it impossible to know when one of them is speaking honestly. They are not fond of speaking to other dark elves, let alone educating them, and every dark elf who has attempted to learn the truth about the Dark Fey has come away with a radically different story. Even the name is something imposed on them from without, as the Dark Fey are not the sort to allow themselves to be categorised together in a single group.

In fact, the Dark Fey were ‘founded’ in the years following the Sundering. Years of endless privation, misery and fear drove some of the dark elves utterly mad. While many of these insane dark elves were used as sacrifices to the gods, others wandered off into the Underdeep. Very few of these dark elves survived any significant length of time in the trackless Underdeep, but some endured through the perils. There was one, a male dark elf with no name he ever gave, who would wander into dark elven cities from time to time, speaking of the majesty of the Underdeep and the secrets it had taught him, now that he had thrown off his old life and embraced his fey roots.

His words struck a chord in the hearts of a very few dark elves who gave up their lives in dark elven society and struck out into the wilds of the Underdeep. Like those before them, few survived, but there were enough who endured the dangers to form a loose association.

The Dark Fey, as they soon came to be known, were quickly branded heretics by the cults of the dark elves and ceased coming anywhere near the dark elven cities. Still, from time to time, a dark elf would choose to abandon his life and station in dark elven society and strike out into the Underdeep to join them. Only those who truly sought to become the Dark Fey have ever managed to locate the others; the many cult-sponsored attempts to destroy them have always met with utter failure.

Culture
Every member of the Dark Fey is at least a little bit mad. Whether he was made so by magic, by too much drug use or even by witnessing and partaking in rituals that broke his sanity seems to make no real difference. Upon leaving behind his old life and seeking out the Dark Fey, the dark elf also usually leaves behind his old name, taking up a new appellation upon joining the Dark Fey.

The Dark Fey are devoted to the Underdeep. They consider it their natural domain, and see themselves as students and shepherds of its trackless depths. They believe the life they lead, of utter freedom and complete self-determination, is the natural lifestyle for the dark elves, and feel sorrow for those dark elves still trapped in their stinking cities by the oppressive grasp of greedy beings masquerading as gods.

The goal of a Dark Fey is to become attuned to his fey roots, to that element of faerie which still resides deep in the soul of every dark elf. They have embraced the trickster aspect of the fey, but not in the benign spirit of many faeries of the surface. They entrap and destroy wanderers in the Underdeep, deceiving travellers with false paths and cunning traps, leading them to their doom. This, they believe, is the essence of the Underdeep, and they honour it by destroying those who do not understand. Malicious and mischievous, they believe all races other than themselves are trespassers in the Underdeep.

The Dark Fey contain the only significant number of nature worshipping priests in the lands of the dark elves. Many members of the Dark Fey are multi-classed, having abandoned their old profession to take up the path of the druid upon joining the Dark Fey. There are some sorcerers in its ranks, as well as explorers and thieves.

The Dark Fey have no central organisation, no leaders and no servants. They wander the Underdeep in small numbers, meeting once every year to drink, celebrate and copulate. Each year the meeting is in a different place, yet each year the dark elves of the Dark Fey know exactly where to go.

The other races of the Underdeep consider the Dark Fey to be more like a natural hazard than an enemy, just as likely to ignore an unprotected trading caravan as they are to attack it. Though chaotic slightly mad, the Dark Fey are not stupid, and will not engage in a fight they cannot win, unless there is no other choice.

Place in Society
The Dark Fey have no position in dark elven society, as they have divorced themselves from it entirely, eschewing all of its trapping and conventions, even their own names, to live as they believe the dark elves should.

When rumours of the Dark Fey first reached the ears of other dark elves, they were ignored as inconsequential. As time passed, however, and the rumours continued, the clergy of most dark elven cults denounced the Dark Fey as heretics, and the faithful among the dark elves began to hunt them. It proved all but impossible to find, let alone capture, the Dark Fey, and innumerable hunting parties returned empty-handed. Fearing they would look like fools if they continued the search, the clergy of the various dark elven gods ceased to hunt the Dark Fey, publicly dismissing them as meaningless. Though they are still considered heretics, the dark elves cults no longer concern themselves with trying to destroy the Dark Fey.

For their part, the Dark Fey studiously avoid the cities of the dark elves, knowing that to enter one would mean capture and, most likely, sacrifice to one of the false gods worshipped by their benighted kin.

Religion
Most of the Dark Fey have no true religion in the traditional sense of the dark elves. Rather, they believe the entire world is occupied by various spirits, and that the Underdeep itself is one enormous spirit. They attempt to communicate with this spirit, to carry out its wishes and understand its mind. They believe that the nature priests of the Dark Fey receive their spells directly from this being.

The Dark Fey believe the true nature of the dark elves lies in the race’s fey roots, and that only by embracing the vestiges of faerie that remain within them can they become what they were meant to become.

There are some Dark Fey, presumably the less insane of their number, that continue to worship the dark elven god Kez’Skul, the Trickster. At the Games Master’s option, it may be that Kez’Skul is responsible for the creation of the Dark Fey themselves, that he has deceived the ultimate deceivers into worshipping him unwittingly.
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Re: Houses of The Dark Elves (Sheoloth game line)

Postby The Wolf » Tue May 13, 2014 1:09 pm

Part of the Game of Bones, prepare to use the new Intrigue skill from Sheoloth, a lot!

Intelligence Gathering
There are times when it is best to simply sit tight and figure out what everyone else is doing, and how what they are doing impacts you. This action enables you to try and figure out what actions are directed at your Noble House and what immediately threatens your forces.

Influence Requirement: 1,000
Power Requirement: None
Cost: 500 SP, 1,000 Influence
Time: One week
Skill/Difficulty: Intrigue (Routine)
Success Result: If this test succeeds, you discover one action that will occur in the next month and is targeted at your Noble House or your areas of control. For every 10% by which your result is lower than your skill test Difficulty, you learn of another plot. If this action is used more than once in the same time period, different actions will be discovered by each use if there are additional actions to be discovered. For example, if you have a skill of 80% and you roll 50% you’ll discover 3 actions against you if there are that many of course.
Failure Result: You discover one false action targeted against you.
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Re: Houses of The Dark Elves (Sheoloth game line)

Postby The Wolf » Tue May 13, 2014 2:03 pm

Barring an introduction and some last minute text sweeping, the book's now done.
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Re: Houses of The Dark Elves (COMPLETED)

Postby Bifford » Tue May 13, 2014 9:33 pm

woohoo :)

Well done!

What's next on the list then?
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Re: Houses of The Dark Elves (COMPLETED)

Postby auyl » Wed May 14, 2014 2:16 am

Looking forward to it. :wink:
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Re: Houses of The Dark Elves (COMPLETED)

Postby The Wolf » Wed May 14, 2014 6:17 am

Gods and Magic of the Dark Elves ;)
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Re: Houses of The Dark Elves (COMPLETED)

Postby Prime_Evil » Wed May 14, 2014 11:15 am

I think a lot of people will be interested in that particular project - Houses of the Dark Elves is tightly tied to the Sheoloth setting, but new cults and new magic can be used in MANY settings...
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Re: Houses of The Dark Elves (COMPLETED)

Postby The Wolf » Wed May 14, 2014 12:27 pm

What I've done with Houses of the Dark Elves is to reference Sheoloth, but you don't actually need to play in the city to use Houses. You can use Houses in any kind of dark elf setting, or use them as enemies in any setting that has dark elves as a component.

Sheoloth has its own set of houses and tends to have the Dark Mother as the primo deity, here you've got a slew of dark elf gods and goddesses as well as a bunch of houses you can pop anywhere.
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Re: Houses of The Dark Elves (COMPLETED)

Postby Prime_Evil » Wed May 14, 2014 12:33 pm

That sounds good to me :)
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Re: Houses of The Dark Elves (COMPLETED)

Postby The Wolf » Wed May 14, 2014 1:05 pm

Yeah, it's why there's very little Sheoloth info in Houses since I really wanted it to be used as a stepping stone for GMs etc. The Dark Mother is just one of a myriad of dark elven gods, including some pretty neat ones I want to bring into play - perhaps a few of my own from the cutting room floor as well.

With magic, I really want to introduce some new magic types into play that would suit the dark elves.
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Re: Houses of The Dark Elves (COMPLETED)

Postby Bifford » Thu May 15, 2014 11:55 am

What's the usual turn-over for finished writing to PDF sales? I'll keep a look out so I can buy it and also report it to RPGGeek news team! :D
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Re: Houses of The Dark Elves (COMPLETED)

Postby msprange » Thu May 15, 2014 12:53 pm

With Darren's work we can normally move very quickly and get everything wrapped up in less than a week. We have some big projects on the move at the moment, though, so we are looking for gaps to slide it in. Fingers crossed we make it for this month but, at worse, it would be early June.
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Re: Houses of The Dark Elves (COMPLETED)

Postby Bifford » Thu May 15, 2014 1:27 pm

Cool, thanks for that Matthew :)

If you want a free set of eyes for proofreading feel free to send me the documents :D
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Re: Houses of The Dark Elves (COMPLETED)

Postby The Wolf » Thu May 15, 2014 5:31 pm

Thanks Matthew, I'll be looking at concepting Gods and Magic of the Dark Elves pretty soon as well, from then on I just really need to cherry pick what makes interesting magic and definitely convert the bone crafting from the drow book into Legend.

It will go nicely with the shadow craft from Sheoloth for definite.

I would love to work on another city book (for something) of course.
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