Reporters this issue: Eric Boyd (firstname.lastname@example.org) Andy Merritt (email@example.com) firstname.lastname@example.org Mike Phillips (email@example.com) Martin Hicks (firstname.lastname@example.org) email@example.com. Johanna Tunon (firstname.lastname@example.org) Chris Herr (email@example.com) Sandy E. Murphy (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Cormyr, Eveningstar Region: SWORDS OF LIGHT REWARDED
An adventuring band based in Eveningstar known as the Swords of Light has returned in triumph to a hero's welcome. The band had successfully crippled a slaving operation preying on the Tyrluk region and recovered a fortune in gold coins stolen from a dwarven caravan en route to the Haunted Halls. Upon their return, one member of the band - the half-elven bounty hunter Jaxx - prominently displayed the head of a renegade War Wizard and agent of the Iron Throne named Hamadan Byrlack.
The Swords of Light were also awarded silver medals by Baron Thomdor, Warden of the Eastern Marches, for the recovery of his niece's corpse. The young woman, subsequently resurrected, had been kidnapped and ransomed by the rogue Ruathgrym, believed to be hiding out in the Stonelands. The medals proclaim the band to be "(Serious) Heroes of the Realm".
The band is believed to be preparing for another sortie into the Stonelands, and rumors speak of their plans to investigate some wider threat to the safety of northern Cormyr.
Cormyr, Haunted Halls: CARAVAN ARRIVED INTACT
The long awaited dwarven caravan from Easting has arrived intact at the Haunted Halls. Locals in the Eveningstar claim the dwarves are planning to establish a temple fortress dedicated to Gorm Gulthyn known as Gormhold in the upper levels of the Halls. The dwarves have been greeted warmly by the humans in the region, as the Cormyrians hope the dwarves will suppress the numerous monsters and beasts that perpetually arise from the depths.
Eric Boyd: email@example.com
Andy Merritt: firstname.lastname@example.org
Toril, Marsember: RUMORS OF A THIEVES GUILD
Most people do not know if there is a Thieves' Guild in Marsember. The Harpers and War Wizards believe that they have kept the city free of a large, organized Thieves' Priakos. But how then does one explain the rumors that there was a failed attempt on the Guildmaster's life? Well, at least it is rumored to be a failed attempt. Since most people don't know if there is a guildmaster, or who he is, it's difficult to find out if he has been seen or not. One thing is for certain, there have been many sightings of Harpers and other mysterious organizations questioning and attacking across the city. It would make sense that the Harpers would go into over drive for a chance to hunt and destroy the guild, if it exists. This could turn Marsember into a volatile war zone...
Toril, Wood of Sharp Teeth: LEGEND OF NOT SO DESERTED CITY
Could it be that the fabled elven city of Askavar is not gone? And that it has perhaps been thriving for the past 800 years sheltered from society by the Wood of Sharp Teeth!
Askavar was thought to have been abandoned over 800 years ago when the elves living there moved back to Evermeet, and there have always been legends that there was a lost ruined city in the depths of the Wood of Sharp Teeth. Regis Simbal, a half-elvin ranger who was traveling from Sembia to Baldur's Gate, happened to notice that he was following behind two travelers from Cormyr, Marsember he thinks, who traveled into the woods. Out of curiosity he followed them the see what they were up to. While they did have trouble going through the wild Wood of Sharp Teeth, they seemed to travel through some kind reasonable safe channel from the foul denizens of the forest. The forest is savage enough that it discourages woodcutters and hunters from Baldur's Gate. He says that as he followed, he could see spires far ahead of him. He then turned and fled for he felt he could see many eyes on him.
While we at FNN can not take one man's word as the truth, it is a curiosity which certainly deserves a closer look. Think of how the society could have advanced if the elves never left the area, but simply wanted to be isolated from the rest of society and created the stories of their exodus so people would leave them alone.
Already a team has been sent from Baldur's Gate, but they have not yet returned...
Chris Herr, email@example.com
Johanna Tunon, firstname.lastname@example.org
Martin Hicks: email@example.com
Chris Herr: firstname.lastname@example.org
Desert south of Tyr: TEMPLARS FOUND SLAIN!
Ten templars, wearing the insignia of Tyr and King Kalak, as well as nearly a score of gladiators and mercenaries were found slain by wandering traders. The deaths were quickly reported to Tyrian officials, and the reaction provoked by the news was a terrible one indeed.
It is said that should any of the band suspected of perpetrating this foul crime should ever show their faces in Tyr again, it will spell their end.
Mike Phillips: email@example.com
Johanna Tunon: firstname.lastname@example.org
Kartakass, Road from Skald to Teufeldorf: STRANGE MONSTER SEEN
A merchant travelling from Skald to Teufeldorf reported that he saw a group of (demi)humans accompanied by a strange monster. The group headed for Skald coming from the valley where Dr. Dominiani lives. The monster was about 7 feet tall and winged, with pointed ears and leathern skin. Fortunately the merchant could hide in the brushwood so that he wasn't noticed by the monster.
The Republic of Darokin, Darokin City: CHANCELLOR AUTHORIZES FORCE IN ARMSTEAD
Following the report of a special investigator, the Chancellor of Darokin, Corwyn Mauntea, authorized and ordered one batallion of troops to be taken from Selenica and temporarily stationed in Armstead. The office of the Chancellor released a statement indicating that it is a response to the rise of humanoid agression in the area.
Darokin, Athenos Canal: BARGE GUARDS SOUGHT!
The merchant Bancohr, a major shipper of fine porcelain, is advertising for a few good barge guards to protect a barge heading through the canal and up the Streel River to Darokin City and Akorros. Pay is reported to be 10 daros per person, plus reasonable travel expenses. Especially good work can lead to permanent employment.
Glantri, Glantri City: INVESTIGATOR TURNS UP NOTHING IN GLANTRI!
Despite being allowed to sift through the records of Glantri's School of Magic, the Darokinian investigator was unable to specifically locate Conor or Angus MacGregor, wizards laying waste to parts of Darokin and rumored to be from Glantri. However, there were a couple of possibilities, and the investigator is heading off to follow up on these scant leads.
Glantri, Viscompty de Malinbois: HEAD OF GUARD EXPOSED AS WEREWOLF!
The head of the Viscomptess' guard and town guard was exposed as a werewolf when accidental contact with the silver ore resulted in a massive burn on his skin. In his rage, he shifted form and slew most of those nearby before the were-hunters on the scene killed him. He was beheaded, his head displayed on the silver tip of a pike. His family is currently being tested for lycanthropy, as are most of his close acquaintances. Tensions in the area continue to mount.
Glantri, Barony de Morlay: UNCLE OF THE BARON TO WED!
Jean-Pierre de Loup-Garou, uncle to the Baron de Morlay and a one- time were-hunter known for his exquisite silver rapier, has announced that he has found the woman he will marry, ending the bachelorhood of the man once called the "most eligable male in northern Glantri." The lucky woman is named Lisl Ferrinsdottir, and, though a stranger to these parts, speculation has her hailing from either the lands of the Heldannic knights or somewhere in Vestland or Soderfjord.
Preparations, while joyous, are muted due to the tension in the neighboring Viscompty de Malinbois. It is hoped that there will be no disturbances in the coming months.
Alfheim, Alfheim City: CHIEF OF POLICE FOUND MURDERED!
The chief of Alfheim's police force was discovered this morning, a serpentine dagger buried in his heart. The dagger is described as a silver weapon, two blades entwined like snakes, with a carved pommel in the shape of a serpent's head. No assassin was apprehended, but the chief's successor has publicly noted a probable link with the recent investigation into Shadow Elven activities in Alfheim.
The Grand Duchy of Karameikos, Threshold: FIGHTING REPORTED ON SKODOR ISLE!
The night watch reports that a squad was dispatched to Skodor Isle to investigate a mysterious disturbance. Though witnesses were hard to find, as Skodor Isle is insular and said to be a base for illegal activities, a survey of the damaged property yielded a few clues. One wall of the house was destroyed, as if blown outwards, with some minor charring. Several bodies, all Traladaran males, were found and are currently being examined by a physician for other clues. Officials seem divided on the significance of the incident, some proclaiming it a division in the ranks of smugglers, others calling it an outbreak of Thyatian-Traladaran hostility.
Atruaghin Clans, Children of the Elk: WAR PARTY FORMS!
The selected warriors from the Children of the Horse, chosen to wage war on the Children of the Tiger, have spent recent weeks training in these forests and joining with a similarly-sized group of the Children of the Elk. The Horse and the Elk have already formed the largest war-band seen since the legendary time of Atruaghin, and it is said that the Children of the Bear and the Children of the Turtle are also sending warriors to join the band.
Indications from the swamps of the Children of the Tiger are that they have received no warning of upcoming events, though as the warband grows, this is expected to change.
Empire of Thyatis, Thyatis City: AMBASSADOR FROM VYALIA ARRIVES
An elf, accompanied by 10 guards and assistants, arrived at the court today. The elf announced himself as the ambassador from the Kingdom of Vyalia, and he graciously and eloquently thanked the Emperor for his support of the new nation.
Quarters for the elf and his entourage were immediately provided.
Sind, Road from Akesoli to Mahasabad: EXPECTED FOOD CARAVAN DISAPPEARS!
Officials in Mahasabad are nervous, as the expected food-laden caravan from Darokin did not arrive. Although there is some suspicion that bandits or rebels siezed it, a search turned up no evidence of the caravan, and the trackers employed, though the traces were a little stale, were unable to follow the tracks beyond a point just inside the Sind border. As one commented, "It is like they just disappeared". The investigators are perplexed, and officials have sent word to Darokin that the caravan never arrived.
Hollow World, The Milenian Empire: ZARGOSIAN WIZARD THREATENS TOWN!
A black-robed man, claiming to be a follower of the mysterious dark wizard Zargos, threatened the town of Tromeas, caused an impenetrable cloud of blackness, and then disappeared into the blackness. The local temple of Petra is on alert, and all of its Holy Defenders are now patrolling the town, just in case the threat will be fulfilled. Soldiers have been dispatched to the area by the Senate to quell any disturbances and scout for possible attacks.
Mike Phillips: email@example.com
Mike Phillips: firstname.lastname@example.org
Ægypt, Tombs north of AEgypt-Keshu Border: MAGICKAL WARD RETURNED TO DESECRATED TOMB
The heroes who saved Fort Nefer-Khufu also returned a powerful magickal neckpiece to a tomb that was desecrated a little while earlier. In so doing, they returned a rather irate mummy to its final rest, although they were ordered by the mummy to fetch the rest of its funerary accoutrements. They speculate all are held by the same raiders who stole the neckpiece.
They are hot on the trail of the raiders now.
Albion, London: MAJOR THEATRE BURNED DOWN DURING PERFORMANCE!
One of the city's most popular theatres, called the Orb, burned down recently during the opening performance of a new play. The play was the work of one Sir Andru, Lord Weber, and it involved some special effects with a chandalier. Unfortunately, during the performance, the lines holding the chandalier frayed and broke, and the candles caused a fire in the theatre. The cast, crew, and audience all escaped unharmed, though an era in London plays has just ended. The play will be opening again in another theatre after the set is reconstructed, and it is said that they will be using magickal lighting for the next run.
Mike Phillips: email@example.com
Transylvania, Odorhe: WITCHES SPOTTED
Local peasants and woodsmen claim that they have seen witches riding through the night sky at several times during the last few months. These claims have been dispensed as mere superstition and the work of idle minds. Local officials have ordered longer work hours for all laborers as a result. For more information, seek just about any hovel-dweller out in Odorhe and its immediate vicinity to the west, near the woods (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Vlachia, Woods North of Craiova: GIANT STAGS HUNTED
Sir Gilbert, a notable land holder of Craiova, has put a reward out for the head of a giant stag seen in the woods 25 miles north of the city. The stag, a 20-pointer, stands over 8' high at the shoulder. According to Sir Gilbert, hunting has been unsuccessful more than several times, and the last time he went out with some of his men, two of his mercenaries were laid to rest. Moribund S. Minesweeper, a friend of the lord, offered to retrieve the stag's head for him, but was also unsuccessful. According to Moribund and his associates, the stag seems to be protected by the very forest itself. He has returned north to Transylvania, but messages may be left for either Moribund or Sir Gilbert at the lord's estate 10 miles north of Craiova (email@example.com).
On a similar note, the apparent cause behind the disappearances of several children from outlying villages of Craiova has been discovered. Lurking within a ruined tower in the center of the forest was found to be a small undead dragon. The beast is still there, as no one yet has had the courage to deal with it.
Send any comments/questions regarding this stuff to, you guessed it:firstname.lastname@example.org.
Here is something for FNN:
I am sure most of the readership of FNN is aware of the level limit/game balance discussions on rec.games.frp.dnd. Here is what I've been doing in my latest campaign with demi-humans:
Elves: -1 str, +1 dex
Dwarves: +1 con
Half-Elves, Humans, Orcs: No adjustments
Halflings: -2 str, +1 dex
I've done away with most of the special abilities of demi-humans,
replacing them with fairly detailed cultures. This seems to work in
my campaign (for me anyways) because instead of picking a race solely
on the merit of special abilities, players are choosing to play
characters of a certain race for the roleplaying possibilities.
Of course in doing away with demi-human special abilities, I've done away with their level limits as well. Also, to compensate dwarves and halflings for their 6" movement rate, the latter are still resistant to poison while the latter are resistant to both poison and magic. Most of the demi-humans continue to have their increased life- spans as well. Not everything can be fair :).
Another effect this has had is a shake-up in what races are allowed to be what. I've been fairly free to develop what races can be from their cultural contexts rather than having to worry about "balancing". Thus you have multi-classed humans (though they might start out a bit older), and dwarven evokers (that con bonus and all), etc.
I am interested in any comments, flames, etc. that the readership might have to this. Thank you.
Sandy E. Murphy: IO01092@MAINE.maine.edu
This is a starting character that will be played this Saturday.
Kitiara of Argos (Kitti) 1st Level Fighter
St. 18/67 In 08 Wi 09 De 12 Co 13 Ap 14 Hits 10
She has other equipment but with her battle gear she can carry an
additional 122 lbs. before her movement is lessened.
[This character has not been played yet. I am looking forward to
seeing how she works out in play.]
Sandy E. Murphy: email@example.com