torstai 5. maaliskuuta 2020

Who's Who in Mortenhoff


Before I plunge into a series of battlereports from the new Shadestorm Campaign and some follow-up articles to the Long One, I'd like to dedicate a post to the setting of the very first Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay game I ever Gamemastered: Mortenhoff Campaign.

As seen in the lengthy feed of this blog's posts, every now and then I pop out a new version of the novel-style story I'm writing about the group's adventures. The Mortenhoff Chronicles, as the project is handily called, tells the story of my first group of Player Characters as they live their rather exciting lives in the Old World.

But who' who in this campaign setting I write an entire novel about? This post is here to answer that.

The location of Mortenhoff, a rather well-doing village east of Middenheim.

The campaign kicked off almost one-and-a-half years ago (real time), on Erntezeit 7th in the year 2522 of Sigmar's Glorious Empire (in-game time), in Mortenhoff, a village I myself added to the Warhammer lore and placed on the map. The location of the village placed most of the adventures in the eastern fringes of the state of Middenland, with daring forays into the Middle Mountains and later even into the neighbouring state of Hochland.

During the adventures and in-betweens, the players have encountered a plethora of Non-Player Characters living their lives in the world as usual, until their inevitable (and often uninvited) encounters with the Player Characters. Some of these NPCs were just passing curiosities, whilst others have remained with the group up until the present moment either physically or in the players' dearest/darkest memories.

This post will introduce you to some of those NPCs, as well as the Player Characters themselves! I, the GM, and many of my players have produced tons of fan-art for the campaign, be it funny moments from the sessions or art to show how something or someone looks like. As such, I have compiled some choice pieces of the campaign art to give you an idea what we think some of these in-game characters look like.

Here's a drawing of the entire group of PCs by one of my talented players. From left to right, the characters are:
- Mellion, a High Elf Apprentice Mage
- Kalós Malákas, a Pit Fighter
- Dracoh Rigulah, a Cadet
- Toga, a Protagonist
- Nywon Nuntius, a Scribe

These four humans and an elf have been through all kinds of predicaments on their adventures, and they all still breathe! Each of them has a distinct personality the player behind them keeps alive and develops over the sessions. As of now, many of their assignments and missions have come from the mayor of Mortenhoff, Wilhelm Wiedermann, under whom the players serve as a part of the Mortenhoff Militia.

The rest of the group was hired for this job by cadet Rigulah, a witty rapier-wielding young man with more flourish than actual skill. He's become a sort of a leading character in the group, often setting the pace and direction for the bunch and usually handling the official side of social interactions; he's been the only one with enough manners/caring/etiquette to get them through many sticky situations that an axe could (or shoul) not have solved. Suffice to say, his verbal rapier is often more damaging than his actual one.

The first hireling Dracoh got into the Militia was the youngest of the group, scribe Nywon. She's a talkative scholar with more knowledge of the world around her than her diminuitive outlook might suggest, and her sharpened letter-opener and hefty tome have surprised more than one opponent with their damaging potential. She's a sharp-tongued and inquisitive adventurer whose gaudiest outputs have taken a pair of armed guards to restrain. Despite the trouble her remarks sometimes whip up, she's a peerless investigator when she's in the mood.

The next person hired for the job was Toga, a slightly foreign-looking redhead of very few words, but whose skill with her strangely shaped single-bladed sword is recognized by everyone in the group. She might not be the most social character in the gang, but she's easily mightier in combat than three quarters of her companions. What she lacks in physical strength she makes up for in steel-cold skill, as evidenced by her impressive feat of slicing a man's head in half in a single swing. Adding to her respectable presence in combat is the fact that she's very reserved and not at all easily fooled; a trait that might have something to do with her performance in social circles.

Then comes Mellion, the solitary non-human character in the gang. He's the only one with any sort of magical talent, and his spells have proven crucial in several situations; his uncanny skill with the Magical Dart is especially feared as it has slain more enemies than half the others put together! Mellion's emotional remoteness and general elfiness has brought up some complications and additional layers to many of the group's social encounters, but his ingenuity with his Petty Spells repertoire have well earned him the respect of his human acquaintances.

Last, but definitely not least, is the pit fighter Kalós. He equals Toga's efficiency in combat, if more through sheer strength than pure skill, but his disinterest in the many intricacies of social interaction make him the one others often hurry to shut up before he can blurt out his usually all-too-honest opinions and observations. Kalós has an eye for the flow of combat, but this talent does not translate over to the social side of things. Still, he is a beloved member of the group whose constant positivity and reliability when things go awry has earned him the respect of others.

Then on to some NPCs! Depicted here is Captain Alfred Schniller, an experienced soldier watching over the garrison of Mortenfort, a small fortified outpost at the foot of the Middle Mountains that protects the village of Mortenhoff and the smaller farming hamlets around it. Under Schniller serve some thirty State Troopers and eight officers, all of whom man the outpost and patrol the region in rotating shifts. Two of the garrison soldiers accompany Captain Schniller above: Herman "Tommy" Kautz on the left (one of the few literate rank-and-file in the garrison) and crossbowman Rubert Stuhr.

Then we have Witch Hunter Konrad Schultz, a Sigmarite operative in Middenland. Leads given to him by a colleague led him to track down a redhead woman with suspected cultist connections, which turned out to be one of the player group. My PCs got a bit jumpy at Konrad's arrival and initially tried to kill him, but changed their mind at the last minute; it turned out Schultz was only after some more information to further his investigations. He now occupies himself by cleansing the population of Mortenhoff. Despite burning many of the villagers at the stake, the witch hunter provides a handy source for jobs and, if needed, a powerful ally in a fight.

Then we get to Norbert, a mysterious child-minded man of prodigious size and the kindest of hearts; he tagged along the Mortenhoff Militia for a while, following the PCs around and wondering at the marvels of the world. He also asked a lot of childish questions. No-one knows who he is exactly or where he came from, but his genuine happiness and honesty melted the hearts of the players.

Norbert likes having friends and my players were only too happy to oblige, although the gentle giant does have a couple of favourites among the group of five. He picked up an Insanity Point (and a cool heirloom hammer!) on one of the adventures, under an overwhelming onslaught of zombies, and the players have been sheltering him in Mortenfort ever since; Norbert got recently moved to a place even safer than the outpost, though only one of the PCs knows the exact location.

Then we get to Snorri the Trollslayer, a dwarf of the Slayer Cult the PCs met on their perilous journey into the Middle Mountains. After getting scared shitless by a Stone Troll (but miraculously escaping unharmed thanks to Mellion the Mage) the PCs retreated to a nearby encampment of dwarven roadwardens, only to run into Snorri the very next day; the Slayer had single-handedly beheaded the troll that very morning, and resolved to follow the group of human-elf militia as they seemed like a bunch that would run into trouble and die soon.

Needless to say, Snorri is on a journey of repentance for a shame he refuses to share, something that got him disinherited and thrown out of his clan. What he seeks is a glorious death in battle whilst fighting the horrors of the world, in order to make amends for his past and restore the stained honour of his ex-clan. Being the bullheaded fighter he is, Snorri has proven himself invaluable in many a combat encounter, wading to the core of the action alongside Kalós and Toga. Indeed, the dwarf has found a friend in the ever-positive pit fighter, although both parties acknowledge that it is only a matter of time before the Slayer finds a foe powerful enough to grant his dearest wish.

Many memes and jokes have sprung up from the campaign, such as this statement from Toga
There we have it for now, some PCs and NPCs from the campaign we're running a second year of already. As the story of my players evolve further there will be more art on events and personnel, but this will serve as a first taste of what I have stored away in my fan-art folder. Much of the artwork still hidden away hasn't even made an appearance in the game itself yet!

In the future I might even share some of the comics, memes and animations we've made, but that remains to be seen.

Until next time!

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