It has been our belief for a long time that knighthood in Achaea as an institution has suffered a great deal over the years. Between the changes from guilds to houses, the transition from old houses to new, the introduction of multiclass and many other factors, it has mostly survived in its current form due to the dedication of certain players and the clan-based organisations they run. So when you read this next part, please don't panic:
With Unnamable and the Paladin rework, we have also removed Chivalry as a skill from all knights and replaced it with a different skill for each of the (former) knight classes (same functionality, divergent theme). We believe that chivalry as a class-based skill is actually fairly problematic to these knighthood organisations, since they have no real way to enforce their standards on members of said classes. Each of these new skills has their own loyal (Runewardens retain falcons).
Runewarden's new skill is DISCIPLINE, and Infernal's is MALIGNITY.
With the move away from knights as a class towards a more general warrior archetype, its now the longterm goal for each faction to have their own incarnation of a warrior style class since we like these for org identity. Historically knighthood hasn't really fit some organisations as a concept, but since this is changing now this is something you can expect!
The new paladin skill is EXCISION, and the new skill for Unnamables is ANATHEMA. These are the Targossas and Ashtan factional knights respectively.
These changes are only the first few stages of a very large project. We are working closely with some of Achaea's more notable knights to ensure that the age of chivalry is well supported going forward, and the plan has always been to take input on what comes next.
The long-awaited Paladin rework is here! Devotion is now a Priest-only skill, and the Paladins, in turn, learn to use Excision, a skill devoted to using flame and steel to purge that which taints Creation! Read about the launch event below.
As Chaos reigned, it was heard.
A murmur of voices, their tone at once enraptured and determined in an evocation of meaning beyond the ability to fathom. With unadulterated purpose the otherworldly harmony soared in an exalted crescendo, crystalline tones blending seamlessly into a single clarion note. And then, with a sudden, abrupt finality, the ringing note fell still.
Imbued with unified imperative, a single assured voice resounded, "Part."
A planar rift of empyrean fire opened the skies above Targossas, the Veil Extant shuddering under the imposition of the spoken command. From within its depths the Verapim Neruel descended, settling within Silverbright Square. Targossians and Cyrenians flocked to the angel, hope alight in their eyes as she turned her sightless regard to the Isle of Blackstone. A single, ringing intonation resonated from her mouth, driving white-hot needles into the minds of all those present.
"Celestia?" The Priestess Imaan uttered, face frozen in fear. Neruel turned at the spoken words, and with a dismissive gesture the Verapim incinerated her. Within moments they descended, the Renegades of Celestia. Led first by the Archangel Brathos, the golden armies drenched Targossas in crimson and scarlet. But the Dawnspear would not fall without a fight, and so they charged back with sword and blazing mace.
Ten. Ten radiant Archangels. Their Celestial essence scattered to the winds of the Eastern Reaches. These are the losses the Renegades endured, as the Dawnspear defended their homeland.
The Exarchs Adalphon and Jophiel came next. Trading stoic nods, they marched through the Dawnspear, scything arcs of empyreal brilliance scattering any who attempted to stand against their heavenly might. It was not long before they had cut their path and reached their destination: the Targossian Descent.
And then he came.
The empyreal radiance of raw Celestis flashed through the heavens as a six-winged figure descended in a coruscating blaze of angelic-blue light, shattering the very foundations of Targossas as he made his fated arrival upon the Prime Material. For the first time in the mortal era, the Prime Exarch Zafikel walked upon Sapience, and the air itself shuddered about him.
He crusaded towards his brethren, eradicating the mortals of Cyrene and Targossas that stood in his way. With a final, disdainful glance across the grounds of Blackstone Isle he entered the Descent. The Prime Exarch sheathed his heaven-forged blade and gazed upon a glittering lake, Jophiel and Adalphon standing guard at either side as he began his work. Emerald radiance bled from the Descent as the Prime Exarch fell to his knees for the first time in centuries, pain wracking his flawless features as light pooled in his palms. And then Sapience shook at the fulminous release of raw Celestial power.
Zafikel rose as the skies over Sapience dimmed, his expression one of victorious exultation as he held heaven-wrought consciousness in his grasp, the twin remnants of Mizal and Ziel made physical beneath the empyreal will of the Prime Exarch.
And then, in an instant, they left. The rift above Targossas flickered as it sealed itself shut, and silence overtook the Dawnspear.
As the last echoes of the planar gate over Targossas faded away, the citizens of the Dawnspear gathered amidst blood and grit to assess their losses. Beaten and battered, the stalwart soldiers of the Bloodsworn held vigil before the underground lake nestled deep within the Targossian Descent, and lifted their voices in prayer to their Lord and Lady. Yet as the prayer began a feeling took hold within those girded by the Devotion which flows directly from Them, a sense of phantom fingers scrabbling, tearing, grasping at the very fabric of their being. Those guardian angels lingering at the side of their companions sagged as though dealt a mighty blow, before winking out entirely. In a sudden jerk of something displaced all at once away and elsewhere, Devotional energy was irrevocably sundered from all those without that celestial bulwark.
Huffing and puffing with the exertion, the stout form of Father Garron arrived to a crowd caught in the throes of lamentation, uncertainty and worry lining every face. Having felt the displacing sensation even in the village of Jaru, the priest and the Targossians rapidly concluded that all of those possessed of Devotion must have suffered the impact, with only the intervention of guardian angels sparing the Priesthood at large. Confused at first, the citizenry informed Father Garron of the two presences that had resided within the depths of the lake, a pair of Exarchs left on the very cusp between life and death for centuries, fed Devotional energies by those of the Old Blood in an attempt to repair the damage that had been done. The old priest reached out one hand to rest upon the fonts situated at the lakeside, once receptacles and links for those energies to be joined to the existence of the wounded angels. A link, he surmised, which had been left open and ripe for the taking.
As the clamour of voices rose on all sides, lambent flame kindled to life of its own accord within the thurible held by Father Garron, casting the scene into merciless clarity. Surprised, the Jaruvian priest lifted his thurible higher, and with an unmistakable tug the flame demanded they follow, setting an unerring course towards the hallowed halls of Adroushan.
Yet this journey was not to be an easy one, for the wandering steps of Halos Vorondil are ever prone to lead a winding and uncertain course. After some prolonged stumbling through the sandy dunes of the Mhojave the group arrived at the caverns dedicated to the Justice That Is. The guiding flames within Father Garron's thurible winked out, their purpose served as the faithful gathered before the searing wisp of Righteous Fire.
Atalkez Al'Jafri was the first to step forward, a paladin severed from that which had enabled him to stand shrouded in Their grace, to do battle with those who would defile the very bounds of Creation itself. With a solemn nod did he lift the jug of sacred oil over his head and douse himself, before plunging his hand into the unforgiving depths of the Flame.
Thus it was that Atalkez Al'Jafri was renewed from within roaring conflagration and drifting ash, stepping forth from the Righteous Fire with renewed purpose. Never again would Paladins merely stand, for it was the imperative now instilled within their very souls to be the blade of excision.
Father Garron's wrinkled features broke into a broad grin, his robin-egg blue eyes shining as he murmured, "They are ever our Guides, and may we never fail to follow."
Summary: The Renegades of Celestia took advantage of the chaos that plagued Sapience to initiate a raid upon the city of Targossas, intent on taking the remains of the Exarchs Mizal and Ziel that resided in the Descent. They were successful, and departed with haste, leaving the purpose of their assault shrouded in mystery.
In the wake of their raid, the Renegades of Celestia utilised a lingering connection between the Exarchs Mizal and Ziel and the devotion of the Targossians. Using this, they attempted to tear the Bloodsworn's gift away, only successfully doing so to Paladins. Guided by Father Garron, the devotionless Paladins wandered to Adroushan, where they immolated in the fires, emerging with a new gift, the art of Excision.
We're proud to announce the release of our newest class, Unnamable! Wielding the powers of Chaos, an Unnamable warrior wields Weaponmastery and Dominion (their version of Chivalry), along with a brand new skill: Anathema. These horrifying fighters warp and mutate themselves in a pure display of madness and ruin to bring victory at any cost for Ashtan, the seat of Chaos. Read more about their launch event below!
For too long the ties that bind had lain broken.
Thus agreed Imyrr Rousseau, Archon Ascendant of Ashtan and the Ruinous Intercessor of Interplanar Dominion. His station made him the supreme mortal authority on Chaos in Sapience, but it was not his office which formed his opinion on the matter. It was his long career as an Occultist that led him to understand one basic truth: the Living Book of Eschaton was the source of his kind's power.
He was not the only one, of course. Amunet Viatrix, Katalyst Rozzan, Jinsun Ze'Dekiah, and Morro Viatrix all undertook similar paths, and all felt just as strongly about what was, to the uninitiated, merely an odd tome. Where others saw a curiosity they saw a long-afflicted friend, one that needed urgent care.
So it was that all of Ashtan gathered on one unsuspecting Aeguary for a group hunt. They were to slay the Greater Dragon Yudhishthira, though their true reasons for doing so remained a mystery for most citizens. Perhaps three recently-returned traitors saw their redemption, or perhaps it was a building of building of camaraderie that is, as always, so valuable to cities and organisations in general. But when Bainz Moliuvia landed the final blow, the Occultists quickly claimed the true prize as the Greater Dragon fell on Ashtan's first attempt: the Gem of Creation.
While the Gem's deeper nature remains unknown to much of Sapience, to a practitioner of the Occult it is something far more: energy, power to fuel their Chaos-wrought arcanum. They gathered all of Ashtan's hunting party deep within the Seat of Chaos, directing the Gem's karma into the Living Book of Eschaton. Though the true workings of their ritual remain captured beneath shrouded obfuscation to the uninitiated, the effects would be felt all over Sapience and, indeed, Achaea itself.
Immediately, and most noticeably, the ritualists disappeared entirely from our world or, more accurately, time. Something had gone very wrong (or very right), and the five, along with Ezekial himself, were swallowed into a sudden temporal rift created by the Eschaton. More puzzling was the fact that the Living Book swallowed itself, as well, leaving Ashtan not only without a city leader, but also without one of its most prized relics.
There was little time to be confused, however, for the temporal anomaly was felt throughout the realm by those knowldgeable in such things. Only Pandora's reminder that mortal matters must be solved by mortal hands saved the Seat of Chaos from being smote by Tlalaiad, the Genesis, who found meddling with time all the more insulting now that Aeon, its guardian embodiment, was gone. Instead, the Tsol'teth deity declared: make ready Their Weapons.
Memories of the Black Wave struck the dwellers of Tezlari-tarin, the world above, and a smirking Ashtani commented that they had repelled the Tsol'teth before. But this time was different, as Penwize Baker recognised. This time it was Bain'maal.
Though it may have bent the rule of "mortal problems" no less than the Genesis' decree, Ashtan's patron passed to Akri that which would buy the Seat of Chaos, and their lost Occultists, the time they so desperately needed. Once again the Spawn of the Unnamable Horror would be loosed upon an unknowing Sapience.
Knowingly or not - for who can tell with such a thing - the Spawn undulated and oozed its way toward Achaea's Underrealm, nesting within the heart of the abandoned Pash Valley fortress as the alien being found itself naught less than a locus around which battle raged with a surfeit of abandon. Targossian, Ashtani, and Hashani alike hurled their foes into the Finality's halls as the Spawn continued its advance, daring to assault Raia'dalam itself. There it was met by Bain'maal in single combat, and there did it fall beneath the reaping scythe of the Dark Earth in ways little different to dragon, dala'myrr, and all the unknown horrors lurking beneath Achaea's earth before it.
Yet in the past, the Occultists remained unaware of what transpired in the present. Whatever they did, whenever they landed, the world at large can only guess. The rift was sealed, and they all returned safely… all seven of them. Only formalities remained to finalise the Second Great Work, and the Eschaton was, after over two centuries, finally healed. Satisfied by stabilised time, the Genesis decreed the withdrawal of the Tsol'teth force.
It was one lone curiosity that remained: returning with them came a perfectly mundane book, yet one that - bizarrely - spoke of events and knowledge that did not, or should not, exist. In a perfectly Occultic fashion the knowledge was fed to the Eschaton, and the Living Book stirred. Now it was ready to teach once more, to reveal a thing entirely new as it unveiled experiments that would create mortal horrors like which the world had perhaps never before seen.
Summary: After a botched (successful) ritual involving Yudhisthira's Gem of Creation and the Living Book of Eschaton, Ashtan created a temporal rift that swallowed up their ritualists and the Eschaton itself. Decreeing that an anomaly of Time was Forbidden, Tlalaiad sent the Dark Earth, Bain'maal of the Main Line Five, to deal with the problem. In response Ashtan unleashed the Spawn of the Unnamable Horror, its death in the subsequent battle buying their lost ritualists the time needed to return to the present, repair the Eschaton, and unlock the knowledge of a new class: the Unnamable.
All of Sapience was abuzz after Lord Adryn's announcement of the third Adryn Keep Tournament, a festival and contest that had now become a familiar tradition to every city upon the continent. It began a few days before the starting ceremony, as exquisitely-garbed attendants departed for their assigned cities, stationing themselves at the now century-old urns in preparation for the contest's start.
And then it began, a prodigious fanfare of trumpets announced the beginning of the first event, a hunting contest requiring each city to slake their urn with the corpses galore! Hashan prevailed, winning the gruelling hunting competition by the barest of margins of the determined hunters of Eleusis. Cyrene followed next, successfully filling their urn just days before the event's end. Targossas, Ashtan, and Mhaldor were unable to slake the ravenous thirst of their urns, though their progress allowed them to secure fourth, fifth and sixth place respectively.
The Land Race came next, the fleet of foot in Hashan being led by their greatest riddlers as they solved cryptic clue after cryptic clue, taking them into first place as they travelled from the boughs of the World Tree to the roots of the Underworld. Targossas claimed second place, with an admirable performance. Mhaldor secured third place, followed by Eleusis in fourth, Ashtan in fifth, and Cyrene in sixth.
The seas came next, a Ship Race across the oceans themselves. Ashtan charted a most efficient course, and with a proficient performance they took first place. Eleusis secured second, with a time just moments slower than Ashtan. Hashan and Cyrene nearly tied, but in the end the Court of Shadows claimed third and the Heart of the Vashnars was left with fourth place. Targossas placed fifth, and Mhaldor was left with sixth place.
Thus began the final event of the Adryn Keep Tournament, the Gauntlet. A fabled challenge wreathed in mystery, testing all manner of attentiveness, understanding, and wit. Hashan was the first to enter the Gauntlet, and with a very impressive time they secured themselves first place. Mhaldor was the next fastest, taking second place and leaving Eleusis with third. The bottom half of the scoreboard was marked with Cyrene in fourth, Targossas in fifth, and Ashtan in sixth.
The games had finished, and Lord Adryn hosted a grand closing ceremony within his fairgrounds. The crowd gathered with food and drink as Lord Adryn welcomed the Khulian singer Moke-Mele to the stage, who performed a bardic piece written by Stefana Vorondil-Lanthe. In the wake of the song, Stheno Aristata was gifted a tapestry of her own design, a reward for winning Lady Adryn's contest on loyalty.
And then it was time to announce the winner of the tournament. Each city had marched through all the challenges laid before them, but only one could be crowned triumphant. The overall victor was the city of Hashan. For their achievement, the Court of Shadows was showered with wealth and presented a boon from Lord Adryn, an addition to their arena at his own expense.
In the end, the Lord and Lady Adryn wound down their festival with great pleasure, content with the turnout and performances of all.
Summary: Lord Adryn hosted the third Adryn Keep Tournament, consisting of a Hunting Contest, a Land Race, a Ship Race, and a trial in the Gauntlet. Hashan was victorious, securing first place overall. Eleusis followed in second place. Targossas earned third place. Ashtan, Cyrene, and Mhaldor all tied for fourth place.
For her victory in the tapestry contest, Stheno won a preserved version of her tapestry and five Mayan Crowns. For their victory in the overall Games, Hashan won five thousand credits and the opportunity to design their very own arena game!
For the duration of October polymegahedral dice can be bought singly, or in groups of 5, 10, 25, or 50, each group with an increased discount. These purchases also award House and City credits, and for Iron Elite members, every 10 you purchase grants you an extra die!
You can roll up to five dice at one time.
DICE ROLL [number of dice to roll (defaults to 1 if unspecified)]
For each two dice rolled in combination in this way you will receive 1 racetrack ticket (so 1 ticket if you roll 2 or 3 in combination, 2 tickets if you roll 4). There is a bonus for rolling all 5 together, so you will receive 3 racetrack tickets if you roll 5 dice together. Each dice rolled (alone or with other dice) also awards you with 1 raffle ticket*.
Dice currently have six sides. The prizes for each side are as follows (and yes, these dice are weighted).
1: Credits (between 30 and 50).
2: Interlocked caches (Elemental, Races, and Planes).
On cache open the Elemental, Races, and Planes sets have a 25% chance to give a second piece.
3: Legend Deck card sleeves
4: 1 or 2 Mayan crowns
5: 50 to 80 customisation credits
6: One of: a silver giftbox, a golden giftbox, a bronze giftbox, or 100 credits.
Every 500 dice rolled (gamewide), the lucky roller will also receive 500 credits on top of their standard prizes.
There is a very small chance for a particularly lucky dice to land on its corner. This dice will pay out a platinum giftbox instead of its standard prize!
All of these credits for the above prizes are unbound.
HELP POLYMEGAHEDRAL DICE has all of this information!
In addition, congratulations to Rathlor who has won the September raffle and 6 months of Iron Elite membership!
Everyone else's tickets have been converted to 2 bound credits per ticket!
For the duration of September (see UPCOMING) we will be accepting submissions both artisanal and bardic on the theme of DUTY!
Please be sure to take a read of HELP ARTISANAL or HELP BARDICS or head to https://www.achaea.com/the-artisanal-and-bardic-fellowship/ for all the rules and instructions.
For those of you who know the rules, submissions must be sent by email to email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org as appropriate.
PLEASE DON'T FORGET TO INCLUDE YOUR CHARACTER NAME!
We look forward to seeing all of your creative submissions!