Ulthuan

Ulthuan, Home of the Asur
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 06, 2005 10:32 am 
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The Immortal Phoenix
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Aruthan closed the bag as he moved out of the merchants place into the busy streets once again.
"I wonder where that git Calarion will be," Aruthan pondered before heading back to the dueling ring. Hopefully he would still be there and he could go back to tracking Tythasiar.

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PostPosted: Sat Dec 31, 2005 12:12 am 
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High Prince of Saphery
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Calarion is still standing by the ring as the next fight begins, and Aruthan works his way through the crowd without too much trouble at all.
"What is it?" the High Prince says. "What have you discovered?"

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"Ask every person if they've heard the story,
And tell them, loud and clear, if they have not:
That once there was a fleeting wisp of glory
Called Camelot.

Don't let it be forgot
That once there was a spot
For one brief shining moment
That was known as Camelot."


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 31, 2005 12:18 am 
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The Immortal Phoenix
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"Tonight," Aruthan said amtterly of factly. "That is when what ever he has planned will occur. I would have your spies and soldiers prepared."
He started looking around, "has Elshar not turned up yet?" His tone giving away only a hint of curiosity.

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"Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former." - Albert Einstein


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 31, 2005 12:22 am 
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High Prince of Saphery
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"No, he hasn't... I've got my people looking for him, but I have no idea where he is. He is the latest in a string of people to vanish... I think they might be on to us. Aruthan, I want you to follow them. Find out where this plan shall be happening, and then use this talisman once you have discovered - you can use it to talk to me mentally if you slip it on your hand. I shall ready my men. Call us when the time is right and we shall come with all haste."

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"Ask every person if they've heard the story,
And tell them, loud and clear, if they have not:
That once there was a fleeting wisp of glory
Called Camelot.

Don't let it be forgot
That once there was a spot
For one brief shining moment
That was known as Camelot."


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 31, 2005 12:26 am 
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The Immortal Phoenix
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Aruthan raised an eye brow curiously before accepting the talisman. "As you wish Prince."
With that, he slipped it into a pocket before disappearing back into the crowd and after his prey.

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"Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former." - Albert Einstein


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 31, 2005 12:34 am 
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High Prince of Saphery
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Later that day, another invitation comes to Avel'Firrodeth, inviting him again to dine with the High Prince of Yvresse.

_________________
"Ask every person if they've heard the story,
And tell them, loud and clear, if they have not:
That once there was a fleeting wisp of glory
Called Camelot.

Don't let it be forgot
That once there was a spot
For one brief shining moment
That was known as Camelot."


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 01, 2006 5:05 pm 
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The Clubslinger
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After such a long time in the wastes of Nagarythe and Albion, these fine meals, with fine company are a great change, one that Avel is getting quite accustomed to, and enjoying.


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PostPosted: Thu May 25, 2006 3:39 pm 
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"And so the story ended for today, young ones" the elderly elf said and closed the book. The elf children who was sitting around him immidiately started protesting, their tiny voices crying for more tales of bravery, battle, betrayal and victories.
The elderly elf smiled to himself and said with a soft, yet stern voice: "No, no children. Enough for tonight. It is bedtime now and there are many nights for more stories of the Band of Storms to tell"
But it wasnt enough for the elflings and one cried out "But what happened to them? What happened to darkminded Aruthan, the bladelord Galathalas, the warden Avel and Prince Calarion and Lady Esperanza and..." The elderly elf raised his hand and the child stopped, fearful he might have said something wrong, but the elder was not angry. He let out a sigh. "Alright, if I tell you what happened to them, will you all be nice and quiet and then go to bed without hassle? he said with a serious voice. Every elf child immidiately nodded their heads in unison agreement.

He leaned back in his chair, looked up to the roof like he was remembering a nice past and spoke:

"Galathalas Itharim, the Bladelord spent a few more weeks in the White Tower with the mage Istarion. Together they managed to find out important clues and knowledge about the cult and they came in time to the tournament in Yvresse where they saved the day. After that, Galathalas travelled with the Band far and wide, fighting the minions of the Dark Gods in human lands and protecting Ulthuan from much danger.
He then returned to his duty as a Bladelord in the Swordmasters of Hoeth where he spent his remaining days as a Commander and fought in many battles improving his swordplay to near perfection. His real name is only known among a few Asur, as to our people and our enemies, he is known as Biel-Tan, the Swordwind or Tempest of Blades."
The mention of the last name made the children gasp in surprise and delight, for they had heard many stories of the hero Biel-Tan and that he was in fact Galathalas Itharim and they knew it made them feel proud.

The elderly elf couldn't help but smile at this and then continued:
"Then there was Talos or Elshar of Chrace. Even though his lust for Druchii blood had disappated he continued to fight them whenever he could. After having prevented a massacre at the Armis Kormailn tournament, he travelled with the Band to the human lands. After having pushed the armies of Chaos back to the northern wastes he returned to Ulthuan to rebuild his family's manor. This he did, although with the past and his knowledge of war, he made his manor into a fortress, guarding the way to the inner Chrace. Last anyone heard he married a fierce Chracian lady and their children still guard the Lion's Paw Pass, where more than one Dark Elf army have been forced to turn with heavy losses." The children sat silent, in awe of knowing that Talos or Elshar was in fact Mor? Ra the Black Lion, the Defender of Chrace.

"Istarion, the nature mage. He would have never imagined what destiny the gods had for him. After he left the White Tower and helped the other members of the Band at the tournament, he continued travelling with them far and wide. His abilities with the arcane increased and he became a most powerful mage. After their adventures in the human lands, Istarion travelled on his own around the world looking for more knowledge and he grew wiser and even more skilled with the arts. Even though he could weave any type of spell with ease, it was those of nature he was most attuned to. He eventually became a Loremaster, befitting his knowledge and he served the White Tower to the best of his abilities. Last time I heard, he retired from his duty and returned to his homeland forests of Chrace. Some say he still walks those lands, guarding the creatures and elves alike from the forces of evil."
A child blurted out "Is he THE Istarion?" clearly baffled. The elder elf smiled and continued his story

"Prince Calarion Sapherior you know who is and what he did to save Ulthuan. Lady Esperanza recovered after a year of solitude and rest and she ruled her hometown well and was beloved by her townspeople. It is rumored she married a skilled swordsman of great fame" he said, and a smile appeared in his face. Then he got himself together and said "But its late now children. To bed you go as promised". The elven children immidiately protested and one cried out "But what abour Aruthan? And Avel?"
The elder elf cringed when he heard those names and the children could see the unease on his face. Then with a resigned sigh:
"Aruthan fought valiantly with the band in Yvresse, but their paths departed after that. His path...was a darker one." he said while gently touching a wound behind his ear, which he had never told the children how he had gotten.
"Avel fought with great skill at the tournament and through his skills and bravery he prevented the cult of achieving what they desired there. He continued to fight alongside the band in distant lands and he became just as famous and skilled as Biel-Tan, which is why there is a statue of him outside the Armis Kormailn."
The last sentence stunned the elven children. "Avel was Yvressemacil? a child spoke in awe after a few seconds.

"Yes...He was the Sword of Yvresse. But I have told you their fates children. And I will tell you more about their deeds tomorrow. Now to bed". The children bowed and ran to their beds. They had much to talk about now and they had enough stories to play out together tomorrow in the misty forests behind the manor.

The elder elf smiled to himself seeing the children run off and he put the book on Armis Kormailn away, and he couldn't help but chukle as no one of the kids had wondered how anyone could have written a story so detailed on the mysterious Band of Storms. He then leaned back in his chair again, looked up on a flawless sword with the sign of Yvresse on it and looked out of the window as the mists were coming in from the east, and he rememberd back to the days so long ago, when he was a young Asur warrior of the Armis Kormailn academy, retreating from the disastrous battle of Tor Anlec...

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Last edited by Krusader on Thu May 25, 2006 11:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Thu May 25, 2006 3:46 pm 
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The White Lion
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Nice conclusion, Krus. It's too bad that SoU went out with such a whimper but such is the way of things. At least there is an ending now. :D

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PostPosted: Thu May 25, 2006 10:11 pm 
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Sweet ending Krus. =D>

You even vaguely mentioned my darker path. :twisted:

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PostPosted: Sat May 27, 2006 4:09 am 
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Very nicely written, a great ending to it all. :D

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PostPosted: Sat May 27, 2006 7:03 am 
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Very well written Krus, though you forgot all about my Tiranocian Bard who joined you later and inspired you all to continue. :wink:

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 24, 2009 10:49 am 
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It might be a very long time later, but since I'm kicking around on the role-playing forum again, I figured I'd give as much of a behind-the-scenes about what I had planned as I can remember. I've always regretted that Storm just got too big for its own good and died under its own bulk. The chapter that it ended on was also the weakest of the entire saga, since it was primarily a 'setting pieces in motion for the climax' calm before the storm, rather than keeping the pace constantly going.

As I think I'd stated somewhere before, the intention behind Storm Over Ulthuan was to iron out exactly what was going on in the 6th edition background information, which had a lot of rather disjointed lore. I found as much out as I could, and then I wove it into a solid narrative. I also attempted to reconcile elements from the infamous round robin series 'Deeply Disturbed' with the main storyline. Deeply Disturbed, of course, diverged drastically from the official canon, but I found that it was possible to take characters or plot lines from it and encorporate them into the wider storyline.

The game was always intended to be set in 'story arcs' of three adventures. Each 'story arc' would cover a particular section of Ulthuan's history, as well as advance my own main metaplot, the "Veiled Alliance" Conspiracy, which was meant to be a retelling of the 'Traitor Princes' plotline from the later Deeply Disturbed games.

The first meta-plot was largely without focus. When it started, I didn't have too much of a concrete plan beyond introducing the major themes of elaborating upon the official storyline and introducing the Veiled Alliance. The first story was the fall of Anlec and the return of Alith Anar. This was intended to answer two questions - what is Calaidan Coraith (from the Tears of Isha campaign pack) doing while the Dark Elves overrun his kingdom? And how is Alith Anar, a historical figure implied to be a ghost, active again thousands of years after the Sundering? I expect that the forthcoming Alith Anar novel will invalidate this part of the game, but that's life. I quite liked my answer, that Alith Anar possessed the bodies of the Aesanar to wage a ceaseless war until Anlec is destroyed and the Witch King died, although the puzzle of his tomb was a little too over-the-top difficult. This adventure also allowed me to start using some of the website's 'unofficial canon' in the form of Enthardon, the avatar of TimmyMWD, and Tanelwen Coraith, from Deeply Disturbed. The second adventure introduced the Veiled Alliance plot, but more importantly was intended to showcase the battle between Tyrion and Kouran, which featured in the 6th Edition High Elf army book. It also featured a few more fan characters - Elthair Minathar and Aethlin Jasper. For the third adventure, I modified a Dungeons and Dragons adventure and added in more clues about the Veiled Alliance. Perhaps as a result of its unimportant nature, this adventure didn't go so well.

At this point, the second story arc started, and I had figured out the three-adventure arc structure that would last for the rest of the story. The second arc was meant to resolve exactly what was going on in Albion, which was never entirely laid clear. Aethis Flamebearer was from the main Games Workshop website's official characters - though after included him, the website removed his information and I had to improvise. Having found a copy of the official GW write-up since then, I know that my description of events was not all that accurate! His second-in-command, Rytheiras Valhachril, was based upon a second hand model of Imrik which I own, which came without the right arm. Therefore, I always intended him to be an incredibly skilled and arrogant character who would become much more humble when he loses his arm. I quite liked his character, much more than the ridiculous Tiranoci halberdier who reappeared at this point. Durak Dural appeared in the Dark Shadows campaign book, and the three Albion adventures were based upon the six Albion scenarios found within that book. I also tried to make sure that the adventure would end in the same way that the official results ended up - Dark Elves win, High Elves second (but Forces of Light victorious - so obviously the High Elves defeated Be'lakor but were themselves defeated by the Dark Elves), Empire third (thus the humiliating truce with the Empire). This story arc was probably my favourite. The scifi robot servants of Be'lakor were inspired by all the 40K tech of the campaign rewards. Anarion's torture at the hands of the Dark Master was one of the sickest things I've written, but served to make his self-sacrifice to destroy Be'lakor's physical form in the epic final battle all the more satisfying I think.

The next chapter of Storm covered the campaign of Malus Darkblade which ultimately attacked the Evercourt. I had always intended that there would be a scenario covering Talos' past, and it was very fortuitous that there was a nice dualistic character development, as Talos, now renamed Elshar, began purifying himself of his incredible anger and hatred as the previously self-controlled Aruthan began to succumb to more and more darkness. When the party crossed through the Chaos-infested heights of the Annulii Mountains, Aruthan secretly struck a pact with Chaos and set in motion his own damnation - as well as forced me to rewrite the plot. I had intended the campaign to end with the defeat of the Veiled Alliance, but I soon realised that it would have to go further than that, and that a Chaos-Daemon Aruthan would have to be the ultimate enemy. The adventure with Esperanza in Chrace was obviously tying the background of another forum member into the story, and the final battle at the Evercourt was an article in a White Dwarf magazine. Aethis Flamebearer's Dragon Princes were revealed to be the ones who showed up, led by Prince Tyrion. Aethis Flamebearer himself retired to become a Swordmaster - this was based upon a White Dwarf battle report, which fielded this character as the Swordmaster - Armour of the Gods - Guardian Phoenix combo.

The next chapter was originally going to be the final one, and was the war against the Veiled Alliance. Unfortunately, the game ended before this war could ever take place. The Veiled Alliance was the result of the disturbance of the Waystones by Grom the Paunch, which released a very minor elven god of anarchy and nihilism - it had been driven insane by the Chaos Gods during the collapse of the Polar Gates. This god (he had a name, but I've forgotten it) had corrupted Yvresse's High Prince, and was intending to use him to destabilise Ulthuan via civil war. Yes, that's right - the villain of the game was the divine personification of the Intrigue at Court rule, and the players were going to beat it up! My own personal attack upon that most hated of rules. There's not much point discussing what did happen in the final chapters, but lots of point in discussing what was going to happen. Avel'Firrodeth was being seduced to the 'dark side' by the High Prince of Yvresse, and would have betrayed the party. Calarion and the other heroes were being lured into a trap and were to be left for dead, while the armies of Yvresse invaded Saphery. Istarion and his draconic mentor were going to rescue the heroes. The final adventure of the Veiled Alliance storyline was going to involve a series of pitched battles between the Sapherian and Yvressan armies, and the gradual realisation by Avel'Firrodeth of what a mistake he'd made. Ideally, Avel would have recanted his decision, and with his help the heroes would have defeated the High Prince and the Veiled God, destroying Intrigue at Court once and for all. Istarion's new magical power would have let the heroes combat the Veiled God on an even footing. However, Aruthan's pact with Chaos meant that he was going to betray the others to steal the essence of the dying godling. It was highly likely that one of the heroes would have been murdered by Aruthan, given what a superlative archer Aruthan was at this point, and that Aruthan would have had to flee. He would have returned in the ultimate climax. The heroes would have received rewards and titles.

The next story arc was to have been inspired by another battle report from White Dwarf, which featured the Dark Elves invading Tiranoc from Nagarythe. A new character, a Tiranoci battle-minstrel, was going to call for aid from Saphery, and the heroes would have marched off to battle once again. I didn't have a lot of plans for this, except that I wanted to use the much neglected Prince Imrik as the major High Elven general, and I think I had a Dark Elven character I wanted to use too.

After that, the party would have headed to the Old World to take part in the Storm of Chaos campaign. After all, the name of the whole game, "Storm over Ulthuan", was derived from this campaign! Not a lot to say here either - the players would have reunited with a few older characters like Enthardon and Swordmaster Aethis Flamebearer, as well as introducing Teclis at last, and the heroes would have fought in some of the battles against Archaon. The whole thing would have culminated in the Siege of Middenheim. I tended to make it quite hard for the main characters to die off except at dramatically appropriate moments - this would have been one of the moments where that plot immunity to fatalities would have been turned off.

The final arc was barely sketched out. It would only have been two adventures, not three, and would have involved the return of Aruthan, now a powerful Daemon Prince. Aruthan was going to 'recruit' and corrupt Shadow Warriors into powerful daemonic infiltrators to serve as his army. Tanelwen Coraith, who had been introduced way back in the first adventure as a romantic interest of Aruthan's, was going to play a major role, probably becoming a player character if there were any more deaths. Since this was to be the end of the whole thing, plot immunity to character death would have been rescinded. It was possible that Aruthan would be destroyed, or that he'd be redeemed - I really hadn't got around to planning it out, but I know that one way or another, he was going to have to die.

Any characters who survived to this point were going to get the most heroic write-off I could give them, since at this point they would be legendary heroes

That's everything that I had planned for Storm! Despite its unfortunate death, it was the biggest and most ambitious RPG ever run on Ulthuan, with a fantastic set of players! I hope everyone enjoyed playing in it and reading it as much as I enjoyed planning and running it. Despite its flaws, it was a grand old monster!

_________________
"Ask every person if they've heard the story,
And tell them, loud and clear, if they have not:
That once there was a fleeting wisp of glory
Called Camelot.

Don't let it be forgot
That once there was a spot
For one brief shining moment
That was known as Camelot."


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