Characters of Cimmeria: Jovy

One of the purposes of this writing is to connect the stories of the mythical heroes in my campaign world. Cecilia’s story connects to Jovy’s because they both had adventures in the Caspian Sea. Thus, I’m also going to repeat verbatim a few of the paragraphs from Cecilia’s story in Jovy’s. No apologies!

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Jovy followed the guidance of Hermes to become the first captain to sail the Caspian Sea. Hermes gifted Jovy with the first double masted frigate capable of tacking against the wind. Jovy along with his friend and companion, Cecilia, rid the Caspian of monsters making it safe for other voyagers. Jovy declared himself King of the Caspian, exacting tribute from coastal settlements and pillaging those that did not comply with his demands. He named and colonized Those Blasted Islands in the sea and fought to protect the colonies during the Dragon War. He imprisoned the gold dragons. When Jovy retired he beached the Mira Miro at the mouth of the Aractrash River to found the city of Lordodo. Jovy joined the other heroes of the Dragon War in their slumber beneath the earth, awaiting the destruction of the Orbs of Dragonkind and the return of the dragons.

Jovy was born to a group of farmers living in the area around what is now Jipangu. Jovy was a rebellious child, often shirking his duties to swim in the river, whittle toys out of wood, or steal eggs from the hen house. His father arranged an early marriage for Jovy, hoping that the responsibility of a wife and family would straighten Jovy out. Unfortunately, it had the opposite effect. Jovy skipped town the night before the wedding.

He journeyed west to the Caspian and then south following the shore. Along the way Jovy earned money by working odd jobs or more often by stealing. By the time he reached the sea he had himself a nice pair of clothes along with a good set of armor and matching sabers. Jovy found that his natural charm and his wanderer’s mystique attracted many of the young women in the villages he passed through who were bored of their provincial lives just like he once was. In addition to leaving a trail of theft and robberies, Jovy also left a trail of broken hearts and pregnant teenagers.

Throughout his journey, Jovy made offerings to the patron god of thieves and vagabonds, Hermes. Joy saw his life as a dark place with only toil ahead, but for the grace of Hermes who led him towards a full and joyous life. Jovy often spoke to Hermes and as he went south towards the Aractrash River, Hermes spoke back to him. The god of travel told Jovy, “When you reach the Aractrash River chop down the five largest trees. Use the wood of these trees to build a large bowl, as big as a room. Then get the bowl into the river. Do this and I will turn the your life’s fate from woolen thread to cloth of gold.”

Jovy followed Hermes’ command. When he reached the River he located the five largest trees and cut them down with an axe he’d pilfered from a farmer’s woodpile. He bought a saw with stolen gold to make planks out of logs. He boiled water in a large soup pot and painstakingly bent the logs, inch by inch. Jovy nailed them together to make the largest bowl he had ever seen, rounded with a rough bottom. Undoubtedly any soup the gods wished to drink from it would leak out the sides, but Jovy had done it! Hermes’ bowl was completed.

Jovy strained and pushed to get the bowl into the river. He pushed, he pulled, he tied a rope around it and put his back into it. Nothing worked. Then a woman showed up wearing fish scales for armor with a golden sword slung at her hip. She introduced herself as Cecilia the daughter of Zeus and asked his name. Jovy said, “Me name is Jovy. Apollo told me to build this here bowl and put it in tha’ river. He promised a reward. Perhaps iffen you help me we can share it.” Cecilia shrugged and shoved the bowl into the water with a single push.

The bowl splashed into the jungle water and began to grow. It lengthened and tapered at the ends, forming a streamlined structure. Huge poles grew out of the bottom rising up into the sky. Wooden slats protruded from the internal sides and then joined together to make two decks. Ropes and sails appeared from nowhere to fill out the rigging of the ship. An anchor and chain grew out of a whorl on the wooden side. Lastly, the steering wheel slowly rose from the upper deck at the rear of the ship. Floating on the river before Jovy and Cecilia was the first sailing ship complete with two masts, a forward boom for a jib and almost a dozen sails. A crew of sailors stood at attention on deck, summoned by the same magic that created the ship.

“Are you to take that into sea against the monsters? asked Cecilia.

“Aye lassy, and I’ve a mind for you to come along too iffen you be willing,” said Jovy.

“An adventure on the open water? I’d like that.”

Jovy named the vessel the Mira Miro and he took his place at the steering wheel as Captain. Cecilia joined him, wearing her fish scale armor with her golden sword always at the ready. After sacrificing a bull to Poseidon, Jovy’s command set the sailors to work taking the Mira Miro downriver. Fresh water turned to salt as they reached the Caspian Sea. Almost immediately something rocked the ship. A great tentacle rose out of the depths and attempted to drag the ship down into the water. Cecilia called out her father’s name and jumped into the water with sword in hand. Her fish scale armor allowed Cecilia to swim through the water with ease and breath it as well. She sliced off the monster’s tentacle with her golden sword, then followed the beast into the deep as it retreated. She slew it and reemerged with a giant octopus eye to document her achievement. Jovy congratulated Zeus’s daughter before setting sail once more.

The heroic duo traveled across the width and breadth of the Caspian, slaying monsters as they went. Cecilia slew monsters through brute force, but Jovy had more finesse. He tricked monsters into giving him their treasure without a fight. He snuck into their caves and grottos at night to slay them in their sleep. He convinced them he was a god and that they were better off swimming ashore than facing his wrath. Jovy hoped his accomplishments would impress Cecilia and win her heart, but she never looked at him with the doe eyes he had come to recognize in his conquests.

Once while sailing Jovy asked her, “Why ain’t a lass such as yerself married?”

Cecilia said, “I vowed to Zeus that I would give my virginity to no man who could not take it for himself.”

“Aye. I’ve seen ye fight. Twould ‘ave to be a mighty man indeed who can claim yer maidenhood.” And I am not that man, thought Jovy to himself. He gave up any hopes of winning Cecilia. They had passed the time on deck by arm wrestling many times. He had never beaten her.

When the pair had defeated most of the monsters in the Caspian they parted ways. Cecilia returned to her village to make it the first fishing town on the Caspian. Jovy stayed upon the water in the Mira Miro. He traveled across every inch of what he called Those Blasted Islands in the sea. He named each one according to who he thought best suited to live there after exploring them. Jovy went to the Caspian’s rapidly increasing coastal population to gather colonists for Those Blasted Islands. The islands were soon inhabited with Jovy proclaiming himself King of the Caspian.

Jovy took tribute from more than just the colonies on Those Blasted Islands. He also claimed all the towns and villages within 10 miles of the sea as his own (excepting those close to Cecilia). Those who would not submit were pillaged.

Jovy took some time off from sailing and became good friends with the Hill Dwarves of Jord. Some say he was even buried in Jord. Others say he was buried on Jovy Isle where his pleasure mansion once stood.

When the Dragon War started, Jovy joined up along with Cecilia. He imprisoned the gold dragons. When the time came for the heroes of the Dragon War to sleep, Jovy beached his ship at the same location he first made the large bowl for Hermes. The Mira Miro remains there to this day, now serving as the city hall for Lordodo.

To be continued

-GoCorral

Lordodo

Lordodo

Lordodo has a population of over 80,000 people and is a mush pot for Aractrashans and Xorians; their starkly different cultures have combined to make a port fit for rowdiness and gambling. Almost all the people here can speak and write several different languages. The port was originally founded by Jovy the first sailor. He received a message from Hermes to build a giant bowl out of wood on the Aractrash River. He did so and was rewarded. The bowl grew until it became a boat with sails, rigging, and fine sailing men, the first carack vessel. Jovy was named captain of the boat and discovered Those Blasted Islands in the Caspian Sea. He invented classic pirate speak.

Jovy sailed to many small settlements around the Caspian Sea and is in a great way responsible for modern sea trade. Near the end of his career Jovy purposely ran his boat aground at the Aractrash River mouth. The magical sailors all disappeared back to Hermes; however, the boat, Mira Miro, stayed. It is now the city hall of Lordodo and the wood has not rotted after all these years.

Lordodo is a province of Aractrash and pays homage to the Aractrashan king. The port has a navy peacekeeping force with Admiral Lucas at its head. He is the legislative and executive head of the city and has the responsibility of stopping crime in the city and judging any criminal cases lower judges find too complicated. Most of the navy sailors under Lucas’s command patrol the streets as well as the seas. The navy has a total of five thousand sailors manning dozens of ships of different sizes.

Lordodo does not have much it produces on its own, but it is the waypoint between the Aractrashan Jungle and the rest of the world. The city does not have any income taxes. The city attains revenue by charging a fee for protecting any caravans, boats, or individuals that travel in and out of its walls. If the city does not receive payment, then it will simply not protect somebody. Word gets out soon to thieves that a particular person hasn’t paid the guards and that person will soon wish they had forked over the entry fee to the city. This practice provides enough funding to pay all the navy troops and to keep the public buildings in good order. Lordodo also serves as a shipbuilding center for the Caspian, exporting well-constructed trade ships to merchants originating from other port cities.

Lordodo has three major guilds that almost everybody worth mentioning is a part of, the Druidic Healing guild, the Navigator’s guild, and the Bounty Hunter’s guild. The Druidic Healing guild is a hospital set up by druids inside the city. It is made out of living wood and has an herbal garden with almost every spell component and potion worthy ingredient imaginable. If someone has a rare disease this would be the place to get it cured. After the destruction of the druid enclave in Semanarie, the Druidic Healing guild of Lordodo is the largest gathering of druids in Cimmeria. The Navigator’s guild is an organization for sailors to get drunk, gamble, and fight without the city watch interfering. The Bounty Hunter’s guild is where you should go if you want somebody killed, but you don’t want the law knowing about it. It is also the only know place outside of Phoenix where anybody can reliably redeem monster parts for cash. The guild maintained an outpost in Phoenix prior to the Xorian invasion where they accepted contracts and paid for monster parts, but they did not accept new members there. The Thieves guild exists as a fourth shadowy presence that provides the pressure to enforce the city’s fee based tax system. The Thieves guild works closely with the guards of the city, but good luck getting them to admit it.

Gambling is prevalent in the city. Rare is an event that goes by that isn’t bet on at all. You can even see sailors betting on how loud their next burps will be in the tavern and winning a small fortune in the process. The largest and most popular casino in Lordodo is called the Hunter’s Best. It has all the usual games plus once a year they will hold a contest to see who can bring back the most of something like Orc’s ears or the biggest Minotaur horns. The entry fee is 50 GP and the prize is the bounty for the amount or size of the things brought in plus 50% of the entry fees. Occasionally the Hunter’s Best holds a tournament at the end of the year with a threshold of bounties to enter.

-GoCorral

Gurutama Timeline Revising Part 27

Previous: Gurutama Timeline Revising Part 26

With the Hykman League now under the power of Navillus they’ve gotta start doing some evil stuff, like taking over other cities with bloody massacres for example! Rotandean is reintegrated into the League and Elves become second class citizens. The Hobgoblins are locked out as well. Amidst all this turmoil in the Eastern Maw, the Rana initiate a artistic revival. While playing Dawn of Worlds we imagined this to be kind of like the Renaissance. That should give us an excuse for pretty much any sort of art style existing in Gurutama if the DM wants to describe something in a particular way. It also gives the DM the excuse to have crazy Renaissance tech like pedal-powered hang gliders.

This post also features the return of the Avians. Prior to this point we’d imagined the Avians as something similar to a slave race. They’ve been a subject population to the Merfolk for centuries and the Merfolk had been exporting sentient beings from Rontu-Aru. Slavery is bad and all, but this is the way the world worked in the past and still somewhat today. I wanted the Avians to have a little bit of power in the last stages of Gurutama, so I initiated the uprising with my Dawn of Worlds points.

Najar also cleanses the Grez ice, proving that such a thing is possible. Maybe that’s a campaign plot there! And we’re closing in on the final Gurutama Time Revising post. Next one should be the last!

743 NA: With battle hardened soldiers at Hykma and the Hearth, the new Hykman League exploded outward. Troops from the Hearth were sent northward to conquer Farpoint and integrate it into the empire.

And with word of the Elven betrayal ruminating in Hykma, the city struck south at Rotandean. Despite being unaffiliated with the True Arrows, the Elven soldiers of Rotandean were mercilessly slaughtered by the followers of Navillus.

Finally, rather than brave the Freedom Road and the fighting between the Hobgoblins and the Elves, the Hykman Empire sealed the Homestone Bridge. The Bastion was fortified to defend the bridge and more soldiers quartered there in preparation for future conflicts.

744 NA: The strife of the wars tested the mettle of the Rana. They overcame and learned from the challenge; their ways of peace and kindness grew. Strife, chaos, and unchecked emotion ravaged the lands of the Hykman League, and yet the Rana were able to channel the horrors. An artistic renaissance permeated from Pulchrito and Domicilius: painting, poetry, literature, sculpture, and theater. For the first time, creativity and expression began to overcome the blunt wealth and splendor that previously dominated the minds and hearts of the Hykman people.

745 NA: With the world at war, mercenaries were in high demand. On Balkus, Captain Lucrais DeBaal of the Zephyr formed a fleet of sails for hire. He was quickly contracted by the Bastion to defend their channel. A fleet was formed to defend the Canal from Elven small boats and to prevent passage across the Canal by any means other than the Homestone Bridge.

746 NA: Farpoint falls to the Hykman siege and becomes a subject province the the League.

748 NA: Shrieking noises could be heard day and night in the southern jungles. Old fears awoke in the hearts of the Merfolk. The Avian menace had returned at the same time that passage through the Great Canal was disrupted. Izquitl sent forth her feathered warriors. The city of Tortuga was taken and renamed. The place became Hobru-Peche to the Avians, or New Roost in the Human tongue.

The Merfolk, not wanting to start a war with Hykma, begin fervent negotiations to move an army through the Great Canal. The Hykmans delay and block negotiations.

749 NA: A Merfolk fleet is sent to Rontu-Aru via the Groshan Sea. The fleet sustains heavy losses to Avian aerial raids on the way and is unable to retake Tortuga.

750 NA: The Avians, now firmly in control of Hubru-Peche, started flying across the ocean to harass the Elves of the southern forest as well as any ships that sailed in The Neck or the Groshan Sea.

The volcano at the heart of the Red Peaks continued to pulsate and radiate heat. The ice, both in the mountains and in the city of Najar, melted. The heat remained. The sun always seemed to shine bright and strong on the city and the place was always warm. The days could be sweltering, but the nights were simply heavenly. Cool breezes gently flowed throughout the city and from his throne, the Mercenary King Jizero smiled. The ruins themselves seemed to melt away and be reshaped. Soon enough, one could hardly see signs of the terrible plight so many years ago. Najar, the Holy City, the City of Endless Summer, was reborn.

-GoCorral

Next: Gurutama Timeline Revising Part 28

Goblins vs. Gnomes

With Bouncy, Flouncy, Fun, Fun, Fun, Fun, Fun!
With Bouncy, Flouncy, Fun, Fun, Fun, Fun, Fun!

The new Hearthstone expansion, Goblins Vs. Gnomes, comes out on Monday and I’m super excited!

If you’ve been keeping up with Hearthstone news then I’m sure you heard that the new expansion has two themes, mechs and randomness.

Blizzard has been releasing preview cards over the last few weeks such as these beauties:

Blingtron 3000Mechwarper

 

Blizzard is also giving everyone a free test run of the cards in Hearthstone’s Arena format. Everyone gets a free Arena run! The GVG cards are mixed in with the older cards, just like they did with Naxxramas.

I did my free run today and drafted a rush style mech warlock deck. The Mechwarper up there was a key part of the deck.

In one match I went up against a Priest. I coined out Mechwarper on my first turn along with another 1 mana cost mech that was reduced to 0 mana. The next turn I dropped a Harvest Golem for only 2 mana. Then I dropped this bad boy on turn 3:

Piloted Shredder

And after Turn 4 my opponent surrendered. Mechs are crazy!

The GVG set is also introducing a few new cards for the pirate, demon, and beast tribes such as:

Ship's CannonMal'Ganis

The new warlock legendary looks insane. I’m not sure it will be enough to make demon decks viable, but there were a few other demon cards that might make it work. You can check the cards out for yourself at Hearthstone Gamepedia

Before you get all excited to play on Monday I should remind/warn you. Blizzard has a tendency to announce that an expansion will come out on a specific date and then release it at 11:59PM Pacific time on that day and still claim they released it on time. This is technically true but it still leaves a sour taste in my mouth.

Anyways! Lots of new cards to try out! Fun to be had! Even a new game board to mess with which includes an aimable lazer gun that you can shoot your opponent with, a rocket, bombs, and a transmogrifier! Sweet!

-Mister Ed

Gurutama Timeline Revising Part 20

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And the new world begins taking shape. Hykma becomes a commercial center, the Najar Empire officially disintegrates, and the Dwarven Curse on the Bwarlor wears out. The Bwalor are finally able to start a civilization that could rival other nations in power. This is symbolized by the expansion of the previously small city of Balkus into a large port stop in The Maw.

We also see the Hykman League forming which will become similar to the Delian League of ancient Greek history. Cities will join, but then be forcibly prevented from leaving.

652 NA: The Twins, Alixria and Alrdia, the wiliest of the old Najaran Quintet, saw their chance for prosperity alongside Cynelle. In the days of old Najar they had been shining jewels reduced to a dull glean by long centuries of toil, war, and occupation. Now, they too renounced Navillus and declared themselves free of the old ways.

664 NA: The flame of Najar had been extinguished but many of her people yearned for the days of comfort beneath an imperial banner. An exodus from the great valley and the cities of Old Najar began, traveling east, then south down the Lower Maw towards the majestic city of Hykma, untouched by war and turmoil. With her help, refugees settled in the fork north of the Tonsil and build a new city, The Hearth, to house the culture and history of old Najar. Battered by centuries of turmoil, they too embraced peace and extended an olive branch to the mixed city of Farpoint where, removed from the turmoil of the great valley, Najaran and Dwarven kind had melded into a peaceful order.

666 NA: The Rana, almost overwhelmed by the influx of battered and tired refugees into their region, rose to the occasion. First, they constructed a place to house their great sages and the great spawning pools from whence all Rana come. On their great lake they built Pulchrito, an amphibious city of immense beauty, peace, and serenity. With their own affairs in order and under the guidance of the Monks of the Gossamer Waves, the Rana built another city, Domicilius, to the northeast, where the river splits. It was a good place, a bastion for all folk fleeing the horrors of the north and the monsters of the southern jungles.

679 NA: The city of Hykma, a refuge for the princes of old Najar and those that could sail to her shore, swollen by an influx of wealth, history, knowledge, and culture, expanded in extravagant majesty. Long friends with the Rana and happy to welcome their neighbors, both Elven and Najaran, she became a radiant gem on the coast of the Lower Maw, and in time, the capital of a new alliance between her, The Hearth, Pulchrito, and Domicilius. The new alliance was bestowed with the name, The Hykman League. Invitations were extended to Rotandean and Farpoint as well.

691 NA: The Dwarven Curse upon the Bwarlor finally ended. Only a few Bwarlor still gave birth to Dwarven children. The Bwarlor rejoiced. With trade revived on the Maw and an end to much of the turmoil of the previous wars, the Bwarlor looked to their own isle. New wealth began to congeal and soon a new city grew up from the towns. Balkus was born, a mighty port and a safe haven for those crossing the treacherous Maw.

-Mister Ed

Next: Gurutama Timeline Revising Part 21

Gurutama Timeline Revising Part 8

Previous: Gurutama Timeline Revising Part 7

This post shows the beginnings of some benefits Navillus brings. Worshiping a demon prince has some negative effects (human sacrifice), but there are positives in Gurutama as well. Navillus truly does care about the development of children within his domain, so he ordered an educational system built.

One of the ways we’re going to reflect this using the game rules is that nearly every Najaran Human will be literate. They learned the basics in the public school system. Something unknown in the similar real world epoch of the Medieval Age.

134 NA: The Dwarves sent a missionary group to the Elves.

138 NA: The Elves responded positively after an Elven embassy to the Metal Tiers was shown the words of the Holy Books of Dwarven Legend. However, the Elves were not warriors. They would do their best to create the weapons, armor, and ships for protecting the world, but they would not fight directly. The Dwarves equipped another army in the Metal Tiers.

142 NA: The Dwarves sent a missionary group to the Grez as well.

147 NA: The Grez agreed to the alliance terms, but preferred to work separately from the other members.

151 NA: The Elves built a port city, Shianosoth, to begin exporting their new products. The infancy of the Elven race necessitates the building of a great deal of infrastructure before a war with Najar can begin.

172 NA: The Najar settled into prosperity. A strict hierarchy brought order and peace to their fertile lands. The ports of Alixria and Alrdia began trade with the Merfolk and sent ships even as far as Hearthland to trade with the settlers in the Green River Valley. Plantations began to spring up in the Great Valley below the Red Peaks. It was a good time to be a Najaran citizen and in the interest of expansion, the empire begins to open its borders to other species (NOT the Bwarlor). The radiant holiness of Navillus continued to shine on his people, driving them onward in the pursuit of knowledge and power. A public education system was created for all Najaran children.

177 NA: Conflicts began to escalate amongst the Bwarlor and the fish-folk and soon the Humans were forced to rethink their strategies… But they were fast learners and they took to their oceanic home with great glee! Bwarlor pirates covered the sea as they used to cover the Najar Valley before the coming of the Immolation.

194 NA: Rumors of a creeping cold began to infiltrate the Najaran Empire. Many dismissed the rumors as merely stories to frighten children and others took comfort knowing that the flames of Navillus would melt any approaching cold… Nevertheless the Brotherhood of Living Immolation, which had thoroughly infiltrated the highest ranks of the Empire, was less optimistic. They heard Navillus whispering to them in the darkness below the fiery heart of the Red Peaks and knew of the dread-ice gathering in the frozen North.

-Mister Ed

Next: Gurutama Timeline Revising Part 9