Monday, April 2, 2012

Jeff's Twenty Campaign Questions for Nightwick

1.  What is the deal with my cleric's religion?
Clerics in the World of Nightwick universally worship the God of Law, as it is the only true god in the setting and therefore the only entity that can provide clerical powers.  The Church of Law has at least two branches (Universal and Zenopolitan Orthodox) which resemble an overly fascist version of the Latin Church and an overly permissive and somewhat sinister version of the Eastern Orthodox Church.

The other religions that exist are primarily focused around the worship of the Old Gods, extremely powerful entities who must be placated in order to prevent a number of natural disasters.  The Church estimates that the vast majority of unwashed humanity living in the World of Nightwick are at the very least secretly pagan.  Those special few who know the proper rituals to placate the Old Gods are typically Druids.

Diabolists and demoniacs also practice their foul religion in the Dark Country (and, though no one would like to admit it, beyond).  Their "priests" are typically magic users though anticlerics are not completely unheard of.  Their trappings are typical Satanist paraphernalia.

2. Where can I buy standard equipment?
Rupert van Toad, the local Frogling merchant of the van Toad house runs a small shop just outside the village walls that provides a variety of common, and sometimes uncommon, goods.  However, he is subject to the whims of his corporate masters.  A more reliable source of goods is the market in Lychgate, but the road is long and perilous.

3. Where can we go to get platemail (sic) custom fitted for this monster I just befriended?
While that situation is unlikely, the local village blacksmith -- a young man named Duncan -- is said to be a sort of idiot-savant where smithing is concerned.  

4. Who is the mightiest wizard in the land? 
The locals insist that it is Halfdan the Black who resides in the crumbled tower just south west of the village; however, their knowledge of the whole land is suspect.

5. Who is the greatest warrior in the land? 
The general consensus is Arnawald the Black Eagle is probably the most powerful and cunning warrior.  It is said he has designs to take unite the Seven Cities into one kingdom.

6. Who is the richest person in the land?
Notker the Unshaven, the Bishop of Lychgate, is a likely candidate; however, the patriarch of the van Toad family is pretty damn close.

7. Where can we go to get some magical healing?
The vicar of Nightwick Village probably has you covered.  Even the two Silent Brothers who assist him seem to be able to work petty healing miracles.

8. Where can we go to get cures for the following conditions: poison, disease, curse, level drain, lycanthropy, polymorph, alignment change, death, undeath?
For the more advanced stuff you'd have to talk to Notker the Unshaven, but by all accounts he is an asshole.   Level drain can be cured by killing the creature who inflicted it within 24 hours of the attack.  Otherwise it is permanent.  

The conditions beyond the bishop's powers might be curable by the various court wizards found in the Seven Cities, but who trusts those guys?

9. Is there a magic guild my MU belongs to or that I can join in order to get more spells?
Nope.  Magic users are too cowardly and suspicious to trust one another; however, individual magic users of high level have been known to take on apprentices.  They usually ask for hideous favors though.

10. Where can I find an alchemist, sage, or expert NPC?
Amalric the Incontinent is the known to be wise in the ways of past things.  He resides in Lychgate.  Other sages abound and usually make their homes in either the Seven Cities or near pagan shrines, depending on their religious affiliation.

Halfdan the Black is said to be able to brew a potion or two.

11. Where can I hire mercenaries?
Nightwick village has been more or less taken over by Badder's Boys, a nefarious mercenary company that spends most of its time fulfilling the bishop's wishes for petty revenge.  Many of the young lads who serve in the company have a rather liquid sense of loyalty, and the sight of a few coins will convince them to find new masters.  How happy or unhappy this would make Lord Eckhard, the governor of the village, has yet to be seen.

Other mercenaries might be hired at any of the Seven Cities, and there is a constant trickle of fighting men from the West.

12. Is there any place on the map where swords are illegal, magic is outlawed, or any other notable hassles from Johnny Law?
The bishop of Lychgate is a dick who has an incalculable number of pet peeves he has labeled as capital offenses.  Practicing magic or openly being pagan is highly illegal in most of the Seven Cities and will get you tied to a stake and lit on fire.  Practicing clerical magic or open worship of the God of Law will get you hanged in most pagan settlements.  Tread lightly.

13.  Where is the nearest tavern?
Right in the center of the village.  It's the Medusa's Head and is owned and operated by Bruno the Bloated Barkeep.  It is a frequent haunt of Badder's Boys.  The woodsmen who made up the bulk of the village's male population before the arrival of the mercenary company typically drink in their lodge, but strangers are not allowed in.

14. What monsters are terrorizing the countryside sufficiently that if I kill them I will become famous?
The most obvious answer is the White Lady, whom some believe is actual one of the Old Gods.  Her foul, half-bestial servants have been raiding caravans along the Long Road and it's starting to become a serious problem.  There is also a dragon rumored to live in the Bald Mountains, a whole village of werewolves, and who knows how many devils lurk about.

15. Are there any wars brewing I could go fight?
The Dark Country is pretty much in a constant state of crusade.  I'm sure any of the Seven Cities would be glad to enlist you to fight the vile pagans and vice versa.  Arnawald's ambitions for uniting the cities will also undoubtedly cause their fair share of bloodshed.  The men of the West are not squeamish about spilling each others' blood.

16. Are there any gladiatorial arenas complete with hard-won glory and fabulous cash prizes?
Not as such, no; however, whenever a noble from the West is visiting on crusade the Seven Cities like to wine him and dine him with great tourneys and melees.  These usually come with the associated glory and prizes with a much lower probability of death.

17. Are there any secret societies with sinister agendas I could join/fight?

18.  What is there to eat around here?
The pagans prefer dishes such as robber's steak (a kebab of beef or goat meat with bacon and red peppers), while the Westerners prefer to put everything in a pot and boil it until it's grey and tasteless.

19. Any legendary lost treasures I could be looking for?
The Sword Brothers supposedly brought vast amounts of treasure with them from the Desert Lands.  It's rumored to be somewhere deep within the abbey.  Several villages also have rumors of old Imperial treasures in the ruined hill forts and stone rings that dot the landscape.

20. Where is the nearest dragon or monster with Type H treasure?
In a long-abandoned Dwarf Hold in the Bald Mountains.  The Mountain King would pay handsomely for its head.

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