Magic Mondays

With the release of The Runed Age little more than two weeks away, it behoves us to prepare you for your journey into the stone jungle of Middelburg.

With that in mind, this week we give you the Star Flare array.

Notation: Create a disk of Light and Push that light disk at a speed of 4 m/s. Contain that pushing to a cylinder with a length 1000 times the array’s diameter and as wide as the array.

Description: Much like the Hospitaller’s Respite from last week, the Star Flare is an array of last resort. As the name implies, this array creates a flare that points to your position, so if you have to use it, you must be in some serious danger.

The key to this array is to create a disk of light and then lift that disk of light into the air, just like a modern day flare. Except in this case, the flare will hang there in the air for as long as there is energy to power the array.

In Middelburg, these Star Flare arrays are inscribed upon bronze disks 10cm in diameter which means the flare is launched 100m in the air. The bronze disks also mean that this array can’t be destroyed through the effects of other arrays (as bronze can’t be targeted by arrays) meaning there is a good chance your Star Flare will be safe until you need it.

Other than being a new, bright star in the night sky, the Star Flare ascends slowly enough (at 4 metres per second means it will take 25 seconds to reach its max height) that anyone watching will be able to trace where it comes from. So while the help you are hoping will come will see where you are, so will your enemies and any watchful constable. It goes without saying that you should be careful when using this.

Character Friday

With only two and a half weeks to go till release, here is your character of the week!


All the character’s skills and backstory were created just by using the Runed Age’s Character Generation.

This week we have Giada Romero, a scholar from the romantic nation of Neatol.

What do you give someone who has everything? That was the eternal question for Giada’s parents. Giada and her younger brother, Nicolo, grew up in a vast mansions, with servants at their beck and call, waiting upon the young bourgeois children hand and foot. Giada’s parents came from old money and their little mercantile empire kept them fat and happy, but it wasn’t enough for Giada. Giada was always an angry little girl, who would grow up to be an angry woman, and nothing her parents could do could make her happy. Not even the priests of the Progenitorist faith had any idea about what to do with this troubled young girl.

It all came to a head when Giada was nine years old and had a terrible argument with her parents. She screamed that she wished they were dead, but no one took any notice as children often say things they later regret. When her parents were later found in bed with their throats slit, people began to take the matter more seriously.

A second cousin of Giada’s father became her and her brother’s ward, but Alberto didn’t want anything to do with the girl he, and the rest of the world, believed had killed his cousin. So he shipped her off to a merchant in the employ of Giada’s late father and so she became his assistant, learning the ways of the world from inside a shop where she could do little harm.

Giada continued to act out, becoming friends with a less than reputable craftman’s apprentice and the two young girls would trawl the docks and wharfs looking for men with money to spend and a liking for young meat. Her carousing and rebelling would continue until one of her “clients” stole the necklace she herself had taken from her mother’s still warm corpse. It was the symbol of her freedom and she felt strangely empty and lost without it.

For once in her life, she craved order and stability and so used they money she had earned throughout her teenage years and the stipend she received from her father’s cousin, Alberto, and bought herself an education.

She at first became a runologist, but she had little patience and passion for it. Preferring instead to broaden her social circle and increase her influence. She did make a name for herself and on her thirtieth birthday she was given the opportunity of a lifetime, to became a research assistant for a wealthy politician in Neatol. As a political scholar, she walked in the circles her parents had and it would be a lie to say she did not enjoy it immensely, using her power, privilege and knowledge to further her career while sabotaging and humiliating those around her.

Her attitude did not go unnoticed and her employer sent her on a fool’s errand around the world searching for a fake ancient manuscript. On her quest, she docked in Middelburg only to receive news she was no longer employed and no longer wanted. Now she sells her skills in politics and academia to any would pay her.

She has had a lonely life, although it was of her own choosing. When one is as wrathful as she and sees all the world as ignorant fools, one makes little friends. The only loved ones to remain in contact are her brother Niccolo and father’s cousin Alberto. She cares little however, for loneliness, as she only has eyes for money and the powers and privileges it brings.

Magic Mondays

This week on Magic Mondays, we show you an array that may well save your characters’ lives more than any other array.

This week we give you the Hospitaller’s Respite

Notation: Stop, in an area size of the array with a depth 1/100th the diameter of the array, Blood.

Description: The Runed Age is a very lethal system. There is very little chance your characters will escape any combat without some sort of injury, even if its just a scratch. It is precisely for that reason that this array exists. On its own, it’s a fairly useless array as the area of its effect is so limited. However, put this on a bandage and then it becomes one of the most useful arrays in existence.

The purpose of this array is to stop bleeding. Since blood can power the arrays, you will never have to worry about an energy source for this array as you will always be applying the bandages with this array on areas where there is blood. As soon as blood touches the array (and is absorbed to power it) the array will stop time for the blood immediately behind that initial blood. When the power is used up, the blood can flow again only to be immediately stopped again. Combined with the pressure that a wrapped bandage can apply to a wound, this array can completely stop the bleeding, or at least slow it down long enough for your character to get some proper medical treatment.

The reason why the Stop effect is limited to such a small area is because you don’t want to stop all the blood this array can reach, and if you’re speaking of an open wound that could mean a lot of your body’s blood supply. You only want to effect the blood that can be leaking out, you don’t want to cause more damage than has already been done.

Character Friday

As the release date for the Runed Age Corebook draws nearer, here’s another character for you to use!

All the character’s skills and backstories were created just by using the Runed Age’s Character Generation.

Our character this week is Jakob van Dyk, an explorer from Alfresia’s neighbour and rival Wesfresia.

Jakob did not have the most peculiar childhood, but it wasn’t altogether normal either, because his family lived near a small monastery of the Starchild. This seemed altogether normal for the young Jakob because he was born into the cult. He enjoyed the cult’s teachings on individuality and objectivism and was never sad about being friendless. The only thing that bothered the young cultist was his older brother, who never took a liking to the poor lad.

This normality of the cult all changed when the young Jakob ventured into the nearby town and saw first-hand the revulsion and loathing the people had for the Starchild Cult and its ways. This had a profound effect on Jakob and he was always fearful of strangers since that day.

As Jakob got older, his family stayed near the cult and so the only source of knowledge of the outside world came from the cult’s tutors. While the teachings were clearly biased, Jakob took to it like a duck to water, absorbing the knowledge like a sponge. His best friend was also a bookworm like he, but they had scarce become friends when the bookworm left for a journey to another Starchild monastery and Jakob never saw him again. His first love similarly disappeared one night and all Jakob had left of her was a handwritten note saying she had to leave because the secrets she carried would be the end of him. Needless to say, Jakob’s teenage years were not the happiest.

Worst was yet to come however, an act that would force him out into world and away from the only home he ever knew. One night at the local town a group of men cornered him and gave him an ultimatum: either do what they want or they will let some information slip. What this information was, Jakob had never told anyone, but he said he had no choice. He would also never talk about the vile things he did for the criminals, only that it took weeks to wash all the blood off.

With no home to return to, Jakob decided to see as much of the world as he could, and make some money on the way. So he decided to become a grave robber, a tomb raider, a thief of relics and artifacts. For 12 years this did him well and he saw many things unknown to the rest of humanity. Some times he would spend months away from civilisation and at other times he would meet isolated tribes who had never seen a white man before. He had his fill of the wild world when an incorrectly drawn map had him out in swamps and marshlands for the better part of year. He decided, for the sake of what little sanity he had left to return to civilisation, and what better city to return to after years in the wilderness than Middelburg.

It’s no surprise that Jakob never settled down with his years wandering about the world but he has left a couple of bastards in different countries that he hopes won’t inconvenience him. Another matter that will never inconvenience him is the death of his brother that he heard about through the Middelburgian Starchild cult. He feels conflicted about this. While there was never any love lost between him and his brother, it is still his brother.

While he may be away from his childhood home, the Starchild Cult of Middelburg have accepted him with open arms, eager to hear his tales of the wider world.

In his free time, Jakob enjoys exploring the stone jungle that is Middelburg and hunting for any source of knowledge about the Starchild. That is not all he does, however. He has always empathised far more with the poor than the rich and could never really control his temper. This means there are plenty of opportunities for fights to break out when he is out in the city and he rarely comes back to the cult without a scrape and a bruise.

Magic Mondays

This week for Magic Mondays we bring you an array that shows something you can often forget: that there is more uses for arrays than just in combat.

This week’s array is the Hide and Seek array.

Notation: Create Light ten times the size of the runic array if a Human is present and Contain the creation of that light top the size of the runic array; then apply this affect to any Human in range of the array.

Description: Other than showing the uses of array out of combat, it also shows how the effects of an array can be applied to other loci inside a larger array. The key to the workings of this array is to understand that the loci (and their runes) inside the smaller array do not affect the loci outside that array. It isn’t the Create and Contain runes which are affecting the Human rune in the centrum of the larger array. Instead it is the effect of that smaller array (creating a large amount of light in small area) which affects the Human rune in the centrum of the larger array. This is a key difference to understand as it will allow you to increase the scope and variety of what you can do with the arrays.

So what happens when you apply the effect of creating a large amount of light in small area onto a human? Well that human will then emit light wherever it comes into the range of the array. This means that this array works light a remote control spotlight. Instead of shining light at a human, this array makes that human shine the light itself. You might think that is an unnecessary step, but it does have its uses. Imagine it’s night time, pitch black and you know that there are people close by, but if you were to shine a spotlight around, they would just go into hiding. So what do you do? You wave this array around and if there is human skin in front of it, that skin will start glowing. Now not only have you caught your opponent off guard, but you know exactly where he is. And if you are lucky, he will have shone a light on his companions nearby.

It is precisely for this purpose that the Hide and Seek array is often used by constable and criminal alike. When you are fighting at night, staying hidden from enemy sight will save your life. This array takes that away.

Character Friday

Release date is fast approaching and to get you ready for your time in Middelburg, for the next 10 weeks we will be giving your a sample character that you can use in your games.

All these characters’ skills and backstories were created just by using the Runed Age’s Character Generation.

First up on our list is Reyes Mata, a scoundrel from across the sea.

Reyes grew up in the nation of Glaasia in the Shield Maidens, but he wasn’t there for long as he and his family was constantly on the road, fleeing from enemies. This was not as easy as it might sound as they were a family of seven. Mr. and Mrs. Mata had five children, four boys and a girl and Reyes and his brother Vasco were twins.

His family was all he knew growing up, and the one friend he managed to make before yet again moving on left the greatest impression on his childhood. Needless to say, his childhood was a scary time for him.

When his family finally settled down in Middelburg, it didn’t go much better for them. The immigrants were in a poor part of time and money was tight. Reyes couldn’t go to school and was left learning about the worlds on the dangerous streets of the city.

He wasn’t completely unschooled, however, as his best friend turned out to be an apprentice monk at the single Neoist temple at the docks. Things were looking up for Reyes and he even met a girl he fancied, but it turned out her best friend fancied him too and a love triangle never ends well.

With his love life in ruins and his family near destitute, Reyes tried to discover a new rune, knowing that it could make his family kings over night. His younger sister, the baby of the family, tried to help him and together they tried dozens of designs. The last one, however, exploded in their faces. Reyes still carries the scars of it to this day. His sister, however, does not. She died instantly.

When his family discovered Reyes lying amid a pool of blood, guts and bits of bone, they disowned him and forced him to leave. For a long time, Reyes sat with a stolen pistol against his head, contemplating eternity, but he didn’t have the courage.

For the next nine years Reyes did they only thing he knew how in order to get by: he burgled houses, stores, warehouses, anything that contained something of value. For nine years he was very good at it, but you only need to make one mistake, and his mistake was stealing from the wrong people. They took everything of value that he had.

He did more than stealing, however, he also found love with a pretty Neoist girl from the Western lands and together they have three children. Through his ups and downs they have stayed with him, unlike his parents and brothers.

Reyes has grown into a man that enjoys exploring the streets, and purses, of Middelburg in his spare time. Unfortunately he has also grown into a man to whom money is everything and he is as stubborn as a mule when it comes to acquiring it. At the very least, it must be said his piety is a virtue.

But will that help him now that he has lost everything and has a family to provide for? Only time will tell.

Princes of Middelburg

Today we finish off the Princes of Middelburg series, and for a bit of symmetry the last Prince, just like the first, will be more than one person.

This week’s Prince is the Matriarch and Patriarch of the Progenitorist Faith!

As with the Prodigalist High Priest, Alfresia never had its own Matriarch and Patriarch until its independence a century ago. Before this, the Progenitorist faithful were led by the by the two Exarches under the command of the Matriarch and Patriarch of Fresland. The exarches were among the happiest of Alfresian citizens when independence came as it meant an instant promotion for them. Unlike the Prodigalists, the Progenitorist faith carried on much the same as ever for it is an old religion and it takes quite a bit to upset the order of things.

As the first organised religion in Alfresia (and most of eastern Jytoh), Progenitorism has a history that stretches back to before the Great War with the Inhumans. Other than prestige, this means that the religion has had the time to get comfortable. Most of its greatest philosophical and theological questions have been debated and answered, its most famous saints have been canonised and the greatest religious upheavals are in the past. It is a quiet and slow religion these days when compared to Prodigalism or even the strange and foreign Completism. Its philosophies and practices have seeped into the very soil of Alfresia, and today it merely cares for the nation rather than actively converting the “heathens”.

The main reason for the slow, often languid, nature of Progenitorism is the relationship between the Matriarch and the Patriarch. In the eyes of the faith and the gods they are equals in everything, just as the Heavenly Progenitors are. They have equal authority, demand equal respect, do equal amounts of work, but most importantly: only together do they form the leader of the faith for their nation. No decision can be made except through the approval of both the Matriarch and Patriarch. Should either not approve, then no decision is made. Sometimes it can take decades (or centuries in particularly egregious cases) for a simple decision to be made if the Matriarch and Patriarch are not on good terms with one another.

This dual leadership of the faith can sometimes be confusing for non-believer as it seems unintuitive at first. It becomes even more confusing once the structure of the faith is revealed. It seems obvious that the Patriarch would be responsible for all priests, monks and abbots, and the Matriarch responsible for their feminine counterparts, but this extends even to faithful flock. All male Progenitorists, clergy or not, are under the command of the Patriarch while all female Progenitorists follow the Matriarch. No male Progenitorist has to listen, agree, or follow any order by any priestess, nun or abbess, and a female Progenitorist can ignore the Patriarch himself should she so choose. However, it takes a brave (or stupid depending on where one stands) person to actually do this.

It is because of this dual leadership of the faith that the Matriarch and Patriarch represent only one of the Princes of Middelburg, as it is only by acting together that they can make decision representative of the entire faith. It is also because of this that the Matriarch and Patriarch are the least active member of the Princes and they are only truly called in when a matter arises of the greatest importance.

Magic Mondays

This week for Magic Mondays we bring you something completely different: an array that doesn’t work.

This week’s array’s name isn’t short, sweet, or even a pun. It is called “The Runegiver and His Companions”

Notation: In the centrum: Bür. For the loci, clockwise from the top: The two Brothers Riada, the Golden Pugilist, the Half-Man, and Woudas the Burnt Angel.

Description: While this array doesn’t have any effects, it is one of the most iconic and popular arrays in the world of The Runed Age. That is because it tells the story of how humanity received the runes and arrays. Every religion, whether organised or formalised, heathen or pagan, has the figure of Bür and his Companions embedded somewhere in its traditions and scriptures. Every religion and culture differs on exactly who and what these six mythic figures were, but there are some broad notions which remain the same, especially in Middelburg where the game is set.

In Middelburg, the Prodigalist and Progenitorist faiths largely agree on the story of Bür, if not the details: he came ashore on the eastern coast of the continent of Jytoh (or Alfresia if you ask any Alfresian) and immediately displayed his vast magical prowess to the locals. More than anything however, he came with a message; a message that was of the utmost importance during the hundred year long Great War with the Inhumans. This message was that humanity was special, humanity was unique, and with faith and a strong will humanity could triumph against the five evil Inhuman species. And with that, he travelled across the known human territories and taught the humans how the runes and arrays work. By the time he was done, the tide of the war had turned and humanity was on the brink of triumph. Then he climbed in a boat on the western shore of Jytoh and sailed off, never to be seen again.

But he wasn’t alone. The first figure Bür met was the Burnt Angel Woudas, cast out of the heavens for his transgressions and forced to guide Bür across the human lands as his punishment so all would see the evil in his heart displayed on his broken and burnt form.

But a wizard and a burnt angel was too much for many people and they fled from Bür as they would have from the Inhumans. This was when he found the Brothers Riada. Both were called Riada, but one was large of frame and the other wiry and thus Small Riada and Big Riada will forever be their monikers. They were as human as you and I and they presented the human and humane face of Bür so others would come and learn from him. For their service Bür gave Small Riada a horn as big as the wiry man, a horn that could topple mountains and be heard across the world. To Big Riada he gave the greatest of all mounts, a giant boar made of pure blue corundum.

Throughout their travels they met the Half-Man. Half human, half Ogre they say. He was an expert woodsman and tracker and could guide the party through any wilderness. It is said he could speak with animal due to his Inhuman heritage and the very earth came to protect Bür across his travels.

Lastly they met the Golden Pugilist. Skin the colour of pure gold, this warrior came to see the wise wizard and challenge him to a fight, for no one had ever beaten the Pugilist. Beaten within a second, he pledged his service to Bür and Bür tattooed him with arrays the likes of which the world had never seen again. The Pugilist could walk on rain drops, lift elephants with a finger and no blade could pierce his side. He became Bür’s bodyguard and was said to have slain the Akkedyr king himself.

So this array doesn’t have any effects, but it tells the most important story in the Runed Age: the story of why it is called the Runed Age.

Tsu

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Magic Mondays

This week’s array will be something completely different and, in fact, it will have nothing to do with the Runed Age whatsoever.

This week we bring you the tried and tested Fireball Spell.

Notation: Create and Contain a Ball of Fire and Push it at a speed of 32 m/s from the Right Hand.

Description: This array is not an array after all! It is a spell that can be casted! If you are a tad confused about how this is a spell and not an array, check out our latest video on YouTube that explains it all. What better way to show how to turn the arrays into a spell by using one of the oldest and most traditional of RPG spells: The Fireball. It is the locus outside the array that turns this into an array because it stipulates that the magical effects comes from the right hand. Without that part, this will just have been a normal array that shoots out a fireball, but now you can shoot it from your hand and aim it wherever you want it to go. You can change the rune in that locus to have the fireball come from any other part of your body if you want; you can kick a fireball at someone or even spit a fireball at someone.

Of course, magic in RPGs are almost always chanted or incanted or sung. It is what separates wizards from us mere mortals. This spell can easily be sung or chanted in just such a way, all you need to do is read it. If you were to say it in English, the spell would go something like: “Start, (Fire modified by Ball), affected by Create and Contain and (Push, modified by Quicken, modified by Quicken, modified by Quicken, modified by Quicken, modified by Quicken), Stop, From Right Hand.” It’s long and wordy, but that’s because it’s in English. All you need to do is make up some nonsense words for the runes and their connections and you will have your proper, traditional RPG spell.

In our made up language, this spell would sound like: “Behg Ob Vür Ant Bol Cob Dün Mok Non Hohd Non Ob Drieke Ant Fennigh Ant Fennigh Ant Fennigh Ant Fennigh Ant Fennigh Cob Ent Fin Regand.”

Princes of Middelburg

Last Wednesday we looked at the Prince who ruled the nation of Alfresia. Now that we have finished off with the four secular Princes, we’ll look at who controls the hearts and minds of Alfresia.

This week’s Prince is the High Priest of the Prodigalist Faith!

Clearly not the full title, no, not for someone of this stature. While he may be colloquially called the High Priest, his full title is “The Sovereign, Eternal and Most Revered Ordinary and Rector of the True Faithful in the Free State of Alfresia“. That is exactly why he is simply called the High Priest.

Alfresia never had a High Priest until it gained its independence a century ago. Under Prodigalist Canon Law, each sovereign nation can only have one High Priest to guide it in terms of spiritual matters. Thus when Alfresia was still only an archduchy of the Kingdom of Fresland, it was the Fresian High Priest who ruled the Alfresians Prodigals. Fresland, however, was a very large kingdom and so the Archduchy of Alfresia had its own Archbishop to govern it as the High Priest’s proxy.

Now that Alfresia is free it seems that the island is too small for both an Archbishop and a High Priest. For all intents and purposes, the Archbishop was the High Priest before the War of Independence; he ruled from the great Eternal Temple in Middelburg and already took care in the governance of each priest, bishop, monk and abbot on the island. What was there left to do for a High Priest? Some speculated that the Archbishop would be the one to become one of the Six Princes of Middelburg, but the new High Priest was a wily man, a politician at heart.

Leaving all the administrative work to the Archbishop, the High Priest was free to travel across Alfresia, letting every peasant and bourgeois merchant know exactly who he is and what he can do. The Archbishop continued on being the true head of the Prodigalist Faith in Alfresia and the High Priest became a figure head, but a figure head the faith can’t do without.

The High Priest has become the greatest lobbyist of the Prodigalist Faith, making it his life’s work to keep the interest of his flock in the forefront of every important politician and merchant on the island. The Archbishop may trade in souls and spirits, but the High Priest trades in favours and information, likely selling his soul in the process, but advancing the Prodigalist agenda one favour at a time.

Magic Mondays – Video!

This week for Magic Mondays we bring you a little something extra. We finished our video series on the Runed Age’s magic system last time, but this time we wanted to give you something that you can use in your own homebrewed games. The Runed Age’s magic system is a written system, it isn’t made for speaking or casting spells. However, using it to cast spells is exactly what this video is about. So now you can use it in nearly every fantasy RPG you can think of. Just like in the Runed Age, you create whatever spell you want and then your wizard or sorcerer or witch or mage can cast that spell just like a tradition RPG.

Have fun!