Wednesday, 11 March 2015

Campaign lore: legions of the Empire

So in this post and those that follow I am going to talk about developing the setting of my D&D campaign! This post is about the Empire's government.

Five are the legions of the Empire, and five there have always been ... although not always the same five.

The Immortal Buffalo General
The Crimson Buffalo Legion serves the whims of the Immortal Buffalo General. It is a potent military machine, most famous for having conquered southern Nornrik in the last war. Now, the Bufalo's fanatical devotees prepare for the coming of summer and the "big push" that will take them to the very foot of the Eight Cold Kings.

Junior officer of the
Dawn Scorpion Battalion
The Azure Scorpion Legionis of equal antiquity to the Crimson Buffalo, although lately it has no glorious victories to equal the Buffalo's. The Masked Scorpion General feels the waning of her influence at court as the Buffalo's power grows. Will some hapless neighbouring kingdom be the next casualty of the General's ambition?

The White Dragon Legion is the youngest of the Imperial legions. Led by the Invincible Dragon General, this force of sailors and marines patrols the Empire's coasts. The White Dragon jealously guards its role as the Empire's naval force. This role was previously held by the Iron Hawk Legion; when Grand Admiral Alzeth and his flagship disappeared on an expedition to the east.
Rumours of an actual dragon are unconfirmed.
The Night-Black Cenacle is not technically a legion in the military sense; instead, it is a cabal of the Empire's most powerful magic-users. The leaders of the Cenacle are warlocks who derive their powers from the Abyss. In addition to lending its magical skill to the Empire's campaigns, the Cenacle spends much of its time rooting out and destroying groups of unlicensed  magic-users.

I don't know where this image
is from; if it's you, let me know.
Plus, you're a baller.
The Bronze Jackal Legion was originally a band of mercenaries from the
Syndicate, and the Merciless Jackal General's power base remains primarily in that region. The Jackals were promoted to full legion status to fill the gap left after the destruction of Zothul and his Old Bone Legion by the combined forces of the Crimson Bufalo and the Night-Black Cenacle.

The Imperial generals are more like kings than military commanders, each of them with vast power and influence even in areas outside the war zones. They are among the most influential voices at court, competing with the Empresses Regent and the functionaries of the Permanent Establishment to direct the fate of the Empire. The Generals must balance the requirements of command with those of politics, often choosing to allow their subordinates to speak at court in their place while they command their legions in person. For instance, the Immortal Buffalo General usually speaks through his most trusted aide, Crimson Buffalo One, or through the Brides, his elite cadre of personal agents.

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