Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Actual Play - 8th Game - 20 Jan 13

Star City/Arden/Kapu (2227 EA766C2-5) Date:  542-050

Our cast this week included four new player characters:  A Gnomish Aredeni scientist named Dionysius, a pilot from Abequa named D'Arcy, an Uruki barbarian refugee named Maddoc, and an Uruki prisoner of war named Gwayne.  Returning were Tiernan, Lykaios, Lairgnen, Zaccheus and Cinnia (via Skype).

Five months ago, the party returned from their successful trading mission.  After extensive debriefings with both their own clan leaders and with the Ardeni Information Service, they hung around Star City, ignoring the war, and generally being idle.  High King Ossian finally summoned them and offered them a new mission:  travel to either Libmon or Tralnor, or both, and negotiate treaties to bring them into the Ardeni Kingdoms.  He also introduced them to D'Arcy, recently arrived from Abequa; Dionysius, a lab scientist who survived an explosive accident only because he teleported out of the lab at the last second; and Maddoc, a refugee from the Great Central Plain.

They were given 5000 cr to purchase any personal gear they needed, and then decided to look for colonists for Libmon.  They put out word and waited two weeks with no luck.  The zek of Clan Gower suggested checking with the Uruki prisoners, as many were changing their allegiance.

They drove from Star City to the POW camp in the Grey Hills, where they spoke to several prisoners, including Gwayne.  The prisoners would not believe that space flight was possible, since the Reformed Church on the Great Central Plain said such beliefs were blasphemy.  Zaccheus drove back to Star City with D'Arcy, and the two of them flew the launch and an air raft back to the POW camp.  From there, they took the four Uruki prisoners (five, counting Gwayne) back to Star City and then to their ship, which they named "The Arianwyn."  Berthing the Uruki in staterooms, they took off, and jumped to Abequa.  During the weeklong trip, they spoke to the prisoners and tried to determine their course of action for Libmon and Tralnor.  At Abequa, the walked off the ship to speak to the portmaster, but the prisoners again denied they'd travelled in space!  On the trip back to Arden they found the prisoners didn't know how to work the view ports in their staterooms, so they hadn't seen anything outside the ship from the time they embarked on Arden to when the disembarked on Abequa!  They remedied the situation, and soon convinced the Uruki that space travel was real.  As they reached Arden, the Uruki asked to be let off the ship at the Uruki tent city on the Great Central Plain.  

Once there, the Uruki dispersed into the crowd, to speak to their own clans, while the party flew back to Star City to wait for a message from the Uruki about colonizing Libmon.  The zek of Clan Gower met them to find out what they'd accomplished, and after hearing they'd flown the ships to the Great Central Plain, exploded with anger!  "High King Ossian forbade using air or space craft in the war effort, and he's very likely to be angry that you flew there.  Get refueled, and leave immediately for Tralnor... if you're successful, and take a little bit of time, maybe he'll be cool down before you return."  The party did just that.

After a week in hyperspace, they arrived at Tralnor.  At the spaceport, they asked to speak to the members of the Council of Seven, but were rebuffed.  They sold another load of farm equipment, earning still more credit on their account.  After a week on Tralnor, they were escorted out of the spaceport, to a large government building, where they were put up on fancy apartments and provided a sumptuous meal and fine liquors.  As usual, the party kept Lairgnen tied up and gagged on the ship to prevent him from doing any harm.  Maddoc, Tiernan and Dionysius took turns guarding him, while the rest stayed in the apartments.  After four days living there, they were finally visited by Dragomir, one of the Council of Seven.  D'Arcy, Cinnia and Zaccheus became the primary negotiators.  They spoke at length, with Dragomir finally departing, but promising he believed an alliance would be a good thing.  Two days later, they were visited by Rurik, another Councilman.  He listened to their idea, and asked many of the same questions Dragomir had asked.

Seeing half the party sloppy drunk, Rurik said, "Your people do not handle alcohol very well..."

D'Arcy replied, "You're right.  The Ardeni aren't so good at it.  We Abequans, on the other hand, are much better at it!"

Rurik immediately left the room, and returned with a large bottle of vodka and two small water glasses.  Filling each, he handed one to D'Arcy, raised his own, and said, "To your Abequan High King!"  Downing his vodka, he slammed his glass onto the table.  D'Arcy matched him, so he poured a second.  "To the Ardeni High King!"  D'Arcy made the next toast, "To the Tralnorian Council of Seven!" and slammed her glass down hard enough to shatter it.  Rurik immediately left, returning with a new glass... four more quick toasts, with the last by Rurik, "To a successful alliance!"  Rurik departed soon after, in high spirits (pun intended), promising his support.  Cinnia helped D'Arcy back to the ship and made sure she survived a painful night recovering from minor alcohol poisoning.

Two more days passed, and they were visited by a third Councilman, Kasimir, who told them they had really won Rurik over... but he'd be tougher.  Again they were grilled with the same questions and finally, Kasimir, too, offered his support for an alliance.

Back on the ship, they agreed to free Lairgnen.  Unfortunately, as soon as most of the party had left for the government quarters, he convinced Dionysius to come with him while he drove the last of the harvesters from the ship's cargo hold out of the starport and into town.  He crashed once in the starport, but made it out into the city, where he tried to run over people in the street.  Local police arrived, armed with shotguns, and Dionysius was shot and knocked out.  Lairgnen surrendered, and both were taken to the police station.

Kasimir returned to discuss the problem, and the party, in an effort to prove the Ardeni policy of non-interference in local affair, told Kasimir they wanted the Council to handle the crime as they saw fit.  He left, and the party was left alone for the next twelve days.  They were visited next by Miriana, a Councilwoman who came directly from court to say the prisoners had been sentenced to 15 years hard labor in the mines.  She recommended they head home to Arden for now, and come back in several months after the incident was behind them all.  They agreed, and thanked her and the entire Council.

Back on the ship, Zaccheus prepared to depart.  Unbeknownst to the party, Dionysius successfully teleported himself from his prison cell, to his stateroom, where he hid.  Immediately after jumping into hyperspace, Zaccheus noticed the ships engines sounded different than ever before.  Dionysius made his appearance, and the party discussed whether spacing him in hyperspace would be safe for them or the ship...

Meanwhile, back on Tralnor, Lairgnen alerted the guards that Dionysius had escaped with the help of the rest of the party.  The guards ignored his statement, so he tried again.  They clubbed him, knocking him out, and dragged him off to serve his sentence in the mines.

On the ship, the week in hyperspace went by quickly.  As the party prepared to leave hyperspace at Arden, nothing happened... the ship didn't drop out of hyperspace.  Zaccheus realized then the ship had misjumped... and we ended play with the party on board a ship stuck in hyperspace!

(Game Calendar:  542-050 to 542-120)

Monday, January 21, 2013

Ardeni Information Service: 542-001 Happy New Year!

Star City/Arden/Kapu (2227 EA766C2-5) Date:  542-001

To celebrate the new year, we offer this quick recap of the top stories of the past eight weeks:

Star City/Arden/Kapu (2227 EA766C2-5) Date:  541-354

Ardeni forces swept into the Borderlands last week, capturing almost a hundred Uruki.  Many of the prisoners have expressed interest in swearing allegiance to the Ardeni Kingdoms.  It appears Uruki resolve to wage this war may be weakening.

Star City/Arden/Kapu (2227 EA766C2-5) Date:  541-347

Tralnor (2128 B87655C-4) is an agricultural world ruled by a body that calls itself the Council of Seven.  Our survey team spent much of their time on Tralnor attempting to set up trade agreements, and were very successful in selling farm equipment better than Tralnor can produce on its own.

Star City/Arden/Kapu (2227 EA766C2-5) Date:  541-340

Ardeni forces armed with the new auto rifles designed at Leventis Labs in Star City scored a series of decisive victories over Uruki forces, driving them back to the Borderlands from their recent foray to the Valley of Arden.  Theodora of clan Vlahos, leader of the Ardeni forces, said, "The rifles made all the difference.  Leventis Labs gave us this victory!"  She was unavailable for further comment.

Star City/Arden/Kapu (2227 EA766C2-5) Date:  541-333

Recent work at the labs in Star City has been approved for production, and sent on to the factories of Alpha City.  Expect to see new consumer goods in the very near future, including televideo, a form of communication that includes video as well as audio, and is expected to replace the telephone as fast as communications lines can be extended from the major cities.

Star City/Arden/Kapu (2227 EA766C2-5) Date:  541-326

Uruki forces have pushed forward into the Grey Hills almost to the Valley of Arden.  Non-combatants are reminded to avoid all contact, and to ensure no Plan Alpha technologies are left behind for capture by the Uruki.

Star City/Arden/Kapu (2227 EA766C2-5) Date:  541-319

Mitsuko (1927 D3356B9-C) is a technologically advanced world which voluntarily gave up it's space industry more than a thousand years ago.  It is ruled by a hereditary dictator, The Leader, whose ancestors struck the bargain which prevented a planet buster from being dropped on it by giving up access to space.  Our survey team was never allowed out of the spaceport, and met only with The Leader, along with several guards.  In spite of his apparent paranoia about the team, they conducted a successful trade mission:  in return for a cargo of Ardeni spices, the team brought back high-tech weaponry and agreed to transport a group of violent criminals off-planet.  The criminals turned out to be political prisoners and since their arrival on Arden have assisted with Plan Alpha, providing valuable insight at several labs attempting to reproduce ancient technologies.

Star City/Arden/Kapu (2227 EA766C2-5) Date:  541-312

Cevdoo (2026 D230xxx-3) is a small world with a very thin atmosphere and no free standing water.  The inhabitants, while human, are highly adapted to their harsh environment, with extremely large rib cages by our standards, capable of gathering and processing enough air to keep them alive without the compressors we would need to live there.  Our survey team found most of the world to be covered by what could be considered a single city.  The locals were eager to trade their metals for food and alcohol and seemed eager for more contact.  Little is known of their culture, except that they practice slavery.

Star City/Arden/Kapu (2227 EA766C2-5) Date:  541-305

In the continuing war effort, High King Ossian has forbidden the use of air or spacecraft against the Uruki forces, saying, "We will fight honorably, as they do."

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Ardeni Information Service: 541-298

Star City/Arden/Kapu (2227 EA766C2-5) Date:  541-298

Gruvek (2126 E978xxx-D) is a balkanized high tech world that has apparently lost all space-faring capability in the course of an ongoing war.  A survey team sent to Gruvek reported large dead-zones based on night-side evidence from the orbital survey.  Closer flights showed a wide range of architectural styles spread across the planet, ranging from rough-hewn wooden forts to stone castles to skyscrapers.  Attempts to land at a starport were met with anti-aircraft laser fire, forcing the survey team to flee.  Further survey work will be conducted only after diplomatic relations have been established.  Gruvek is the first world designated as a red travel zone by High King Ossian.

In other news, the AIS offers it's sincerest apologies to High King Baloq of the Kingdom of Abequa.  In last week's article he was mistakenly referred to as King Baloq.  Per treaty, the ruler of a planet is referred to as "High King" without regard to the number of kingdoms found on the planet.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Ardeni Information Service: 541-291

Kingdom of Abequa/Abequa/Kapu (2226 D577332-6) Date:  541-291

The newly founded Kingdom of Abequa (full name:  The Democratic Kingdom of Free Abequa) is ruled by King Baloq and his queen, our own Lady Delphi of Stamatelos.  The majority of the population lives on an island 20 kilometers off the coast of the one continent on Abequa.  

Abequa was a high tech world with a class A starport, but one of the last bombs dropped on the planet during the Secession War destroyed the starport and rendered it and the surrounding city radioactive.  The survivors fled the continent, managing to retain both their democratic tradition, and a basic level of technology.   Over the centuries, they've slowly rebuilt their technological base,  which they supplemented by scavenging the continent for high tech leftovers.  

The past century has seen a marked decline in the Abequan population, in large part due to a very low birth rate.  Scavenging trips on the continent, with it's residual radiation, are the most probable cause of the low birth rate.  King Baloq has recommended that his people follow his lead, and marry people from Arden in order to revitalize their population.