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Ryons, The High King
Author: Karl Rodriguez
A Three Year Campaign in Norgales and Cameliard
In the chaos after the fall of Uther Pendragon, several warlords
attempt to consolidate power over large stretches of territory. Lot
gathers the Pictish Tribes in the extreme North, while Uriens does
this a bit further south among the Cymric tribes.
Ryons has done the same in northern Cambria to create Norgales. Over
the last several years he has wooed the tribes of the Rhufoniog,
Tegeingl, Dyffryn Clywd, Edeirnion, Rhos, Amans, Pase, and the small
tribes of the Peaks in the south-western Pennines. Finally, he has put
enough pressure on young Dux Randle for him to pay tribute from
Chesire. To the northwest, the kingdom of Gomeret is struggling, as
supporters of the de Gales clan attempt to hold the tribes in line
despite the repeated absence of their king. The only tribal area that
resists Ryons is Penllyn. While not forced to recognize Ryons as
overlord, it is has been rendered a non-factor in his next phase due
to repeated raids by its Ryons-allied neighbors.
King Ryons broods from Dinas Bran, overlooking the Dee River. He
formulates his next plan with the help of his mother's Raven witch
coven. He must strike into Cameliard in order to begin his bid to
become High King of the Cymric tribes. He needs the small kingdom as a
jumping point into the fertile south. So, like Vortigern, he strikes
However, King Ryons knows that Cameliard has many allies to the south.
He would like to divert the attention away from him to these southern
counties on the east of the Severn River by possibly creating bad
blood between his southeastern neighbor Orofoise and one or more of
The Raven witches have used their glamour to control the wills of a
number of men. One of these men is sent to the court of the one of
these Logrian lords.
The referee will find _Savage Mountains_ very helpful for running this
adventure, but hopefully there is enough information here to run
without the book.
This adventure takes place in phase 1, c.501. However, it does work as
late as 505 (to end in 507 before the Battle of Winchester in 508). It
is best suited for characters who have notable knight skills from
serving time fighting Saxons in the south or east or in the
Clarence-Glouster War. Ideally, the characters are from or at court in
Glouster, Clarence or Wurensis. Lambor is also a possibility, however
until the de Ganis clan is given these lands, this area would probably
be pretty lawless, filled with petty robber barons.
THE SPY AT COURT
The adventure begins when a Ryons spy introduces himself to the court
as Anelius, messenger from Orofoise. He is wholly loyal to Ryons and
the Raven witches of Dinas Bran. He asks the lord for help (even
providing a sealed message if asked) against the raids on the old
Roman city. The raiders are from hill tribes to the north and west of
Oroquelenes. He claims not to know which ones and suggests an alliance
of several tribes.
Players may roll [Intrigue (opposed to Anelius's score of 15).
Success = Something is amiss. Critical = The messenger stares off at
nothing now and again and is overly zealous in asking the lord for
help]. In any case, the Lord of the PCs does not notice this and sends
the PCs if they are household knights or vassal knights presently in
court. Visitors have a choice.
THE BATTLE IN OROFOISE
If a PC has a Battle skill of 15 or greater, that PC is the leader of
a token force of strength to scare the raiders away. If not, the lord
sends a banneret knight (3 KV) with the skills of a notable knight as
the leader. The force consists of 10 ordinary knights (20KV), 20
armored footsoldiers (20KV), all outfitted as phase 1 troops. The PCs
round out the force.
If all goes as planned, the spy leads the PCs through and past the
village of Quatford along the Severn River (K-16 on the Savage
Mountains Map) to camp at a burned-out hill fort across the river (the
future site of Brignorth Castle). The next day, the guide leads the
PCs and their force into a canyon. Here, the PCs can roll Battle skill
before they enter the canyon, if they ask [Battle. Success = this
would be a good place for an ambush. Critical = as above, plus horses
would have a very hard time going up the slope (-10 penlty to
If the force proceeds, have the following occur:
You see Anelius raise his blade and yell "Ambush!" He rears his horse
and yells, "For Orofoise!". Then, to your suprise, he strikes Sir
_____ (Anelius will have +10 to his skill for inspiration Loyalty
(Ryons) and a +5 for suprise. He may well fell the PC or the
banneret). Then, it begins to rain rocks and javelins...
The Ambush occurs as follows using the skirmish rules:
PCs group: 10 knights (20 KV), 20 armored footsoldiers (20 KV), PCs
and/or Banneret Knight (3 KV).
Enemy Group: 70 Hillmen Warriors (35 KV), Anelius (1 KV).
The Battle Skill for the enemy is 12.
Modifiers: PCs outnumbered -5/+5
Unfavorable terrain -5/+5
Superior Troops +5/-5
Round 1: Hillmen throw rocks (doing sling damage) and hurl javelins
from high positions with modifiers from commander roll and +5 for high
* Roll 3X for each mounted knight (1-3 knight, 4-6 horse)
* Roll 2x for any one on the ground
* Take losses from NPCs for a failed or successful Battle roll
Round 2: Wild, screaming Hillmen pour from all sides. Three attack
knights, two attack ground troops. Use melee rules to play out combat.
Skirmish continues until PCs are dead, captured, or have finished
If all PCs survive their individual combats, then their small force
carries the day and the rest of the Hillmen rout into the hills.
Pursuit is possible but at a -10 for Riding through treacherous
terrain [Horsemanship. Failure = Horse roll CON or break leg. Fumble =
Automatic Horse Loss]. If successful pursuit for two rounds or more,
then another Ambush by multiple opponents occurs. Knight must make
[Awareness] to see the attack (if failed, enemy gets a +5 as well).
Undoubtedly, the players will be quite upset. Maybe some Hatred
passions and definitely some Suspicious traits will be in order. This
is the GMs call.
If the PCs win, they may want to lick their wounds and return directly
with all haste to their home county. If they ask, most of the Hillmen
retreat to the Northwest, but following them is nearly impossible (-15
to [Hunting]). Instead steer them back towards the hillfort and run
the following encounter:
As the player group is recovering and getting ready to move on, they
are hailed by a patrol of 5 knights with 15 mounted hillmen as
auxillaries (Use Cymric warrior stats and equip them as on page 24 of
Savage Mountains: sword, 2 spears, leather armor, shield, metal
helmet, riding Celtic ponies). They are led by a notable knight, Sir
Tathan of Oroquelenes who regularly patrol the hillfort area. They are
truly from Orofoise and know nothing of the Ambush.
If questioned they will say: Yes, there are raids all the time. No,
they did not send a messenger for help. They do not remember seeing
anyone resembling Anelius at court.
A fight may ensue for less diplomatic characters, creating a feud. The
patrol will defend itself and attempt to retreat from this treachery
to tell their lord back in Oroquelenes.
If the PCs survive, they may spend the rest of the year convincing
their lord to attack Orofoise, or advise him that something strange is
amiss. Orofoise is not the culprit of the dastardly ambush, and we
must wait to see what happens.
ANELIUS THE SPY
Use Sergeant Stats [Pendragon, pg. 330].
WILD CYMRIC WARRIORS
These guys are tougher than Picts to reflect King Ryons' and his witch
mother's heavy recruitment and training of elite warriors. Leader or
chieftan stats are in parentheses. There will be only one leader at
SIZ 13 (15) MOVE: 3 [+1 or +2 if no armor]
DEX 14 Damage: 5d6
STR 14 Hit points: 27 (30)
CON 14 (15) Armor: 7, 4, or 3 + shield if one-handed weapon*
APP 7 Knockdown: 14
Major Wound: 15
Unconcious: 7 (8)
Attacks: Great Spear 14, Rock or Javelin 18, Mace or sword 14
Chieftan has +5 to melee skill. Against knights, one of the three
foes uses Great Spear. Randomly determine the others arms. These
warriors will employ Double Feint tactic against armoured opponents.
Passions: Hate (Logrians) 14
Traits: Valorous 16
*Armor 3=tattooes, 4=leather, 7=leather + tattooes. Distribution 60%,
30%, 10% respectively.
End Year One
If Year One was played, it is likely that during the Winter Phase the
players may well be brooding and using any courtly influence they have
to provoke their lord into mounting a punitive strike against
Orofoise. The referee is encouraged to play this interaction as a solo
or to start the new campaign year.
At this point, the GM can take the campaign in one of two directions.
He can let the player characters take action against Orofoise or
decide as the players' lord that such an expedition is unwarranted or
Players can take their own initiative, however, and mount raids
against Orofoise. The political ramifications will occur in the years
to come as the rulers of Orofoise will petition their powerful
neighbor Powys, where the young King Belinans has been successfully
uniting the tribes of the central Cambrian mountains. The players will
have started a bloody feud between their county and Sugales.
ASSAULT ON OROFOISE
This year, the GM can let the players attack Oroquelenes and
Shrewsbury. According to Savage Mountains (pg. 20), Orofoise has a
standing army of 75 knights and 150 soldiers (225 KV). You could
divide this force between Oroquelenes (7/10/5 Defensive Value; old
Roman Walls in general disrepair and no towers with a Reinforced Motte
and Bailey inside the city) and Shrewsbury (8 or 12/9/10; a fortress
of stone surrounded by a pallisade on a hill with water on three
sides, the fourth side has a double ditch). However, if a siege lasts
as long as a fortnight, these forces will be supplemented by
neighboring tribes in northeastern Powys with a force of 4 knights and
a teuleu of 12 sergeants and 125 warriors (83 KV) from the Gordower
commote and 8 knights and a teuleu of 16 sergeants and 200 warriors
(148 KV) from the large Clun cantrev.
Meanwhile, King Belinans, who is courting Elidia about this time (see
Tournament of Dreams adventure book c.1983), will not mobilize his
1000 KV army (Savage Mountains, "The Cambrian War") until next year.
This is another adventure altogether and beyond the scope of the
KING RYONS INVADES CAMELIARD
King Ryons of Norgales will be quite pleased with the above scenario and
will negotiate non-aggression pacts with Orofoise and Powys and aligned
tribes this year. Players with characters from Cameliard will feel the
brunt of his next strike. (Of note, the castles of Dudley, Terrabel, or
Caverswall do not exist yet. They are built as a result of this war to
guard better against Ryons' aggression in years to come.)
Supplemented with equites from Chesire and his own elite knights, he
sends his brother Nero, along with his uncle Idurans into Cameliard.
The army splits with Nero, taking the bulk towards Stafford, the
stronghold of Leodegrance. The other force, with only a few knights
and a lot of Hillmen seek plunder to the southeast in and around the
Arden Forest. Among other things, Idurans raises the towns of Matchley
and Dudley (which has no castle at this time) in Cameliard (L-16 on
Savage Mountains map).
King Leodegrance gets wind of an invasion. He calls for the bulk of
his force to muster quickly and draws from the garrisons of his
southern castles Penkridge and Carohaise, leaving a skeleton force
behind. Player characters from Cameliard easily be in this battle and
visitors to the king's court are asked (and perhaps bribed or hired
for [Selfish] and [Worldly] checks - hiring is per the standard rates
in _Boy King_, phase one, pg. 16) to help. He maneuvers his army in
time to meet Nero outside the town of Market Drayton. A battle ensues:
Battle of Market Drayton
King Leodegrance = 18
Nero = 15
Battle Size: Small
Cameliard: 50 knights, 150 footsoldiers (175 KV) + players.
Norgales: 75 knights, 100 horse hillwarriors, 250 hill warriors (375 KV).
Modifiers: Nero Outnumbers +5/-5
Length of Battle: 6 rounds. The army with less KV at that point will
sound a retreat.
Round 1: Glamour on first lance charge gives players a -5 to lance
skill for first round only [Pious. Success = Negates penalty. Critical
= +5 bonus.]
Round 2-6: Normal.
Glory = 15/rd
Battle Modules (from _Beyond the Wall_ appendix)
C +4 No losses
S +2 10% losses, 2% killed, 8% wounded
PS +0 25% losses, 5% killed, 16% wounded, 4% captured
F -2 50% losses, 10% killed, 25% wounded, 15% captured
Fum -4 75% losses, 50% killed, 25% captured
03-12 Hillmen Foot (see Year One for stats)
13-15 Hillmen Horse (use chieftan stats for Year One, Wild Hillman)
16-17 Knights (1-4 Ordinary, 5-6 Notable)
18 Command Unit (Nero = Notable Knight with the physical stats of
a small giant, guarded by four Notable and four Famous knights.)
No plunder is taken, even if it is Nero who retreats. Leodegrance
sends messengers to his southern allies for help and marches back to
defend Stafford. He also calls for more reserve force from Tarnworth
Castle on his eastern border.
Nero regroups, sends messengers to Ryons and Idurans. He continues
towards Stafford, pillaging all the way. Meanwhile, Ryons orders
Idurans to begin phase two of the invasion. Idurans marches towards
Penkridge Castle and lays siege. Players may actually be at the castle
or arrive there while it is beseiged.
Siege at Penkridge
Castellan, Sir Bulius (Old Knight) = 15
Idurans = 18 replaced by Llewbran, King of Rhos Tribe after four days
(Battle = 14)
Penkridge: 1/10/5 (a meager ditch with a Reinforced Motte and
Bailey) and 6 knights with 20 soldiers (32 KV) and players if inside.
Norgales: 11 Elite Norgales Knights, 27 Equites, 30 mounted Hillmen,
192 Hillmen (215 KV, but only 126 KV committed to assault, namely the
Hillmen and their mounted leaders, use the Wild Hillmen and Wild
Hillmen Leader Stats from Year One)
Force Assaulting Outnumbers 4 to 1 (+8/-8)
Siege Equipment on Initial Assault (+1)
Castle Defenses (-1, -10, or -5, As assaulting siege +10/-10 for
defenders on walls, +5/-5 for those in the Bailey)
Glory: as per skirmish
After four days, Idurans gets word that an army from the southern
allies approaches. He takes a goodly amount of the assault force and
travels directly south to intercept near the Avon River tributary of
the Arden. Here, he lays ambush for the marching force. This is where
the players can enter if they are not from Cameliard and were part of
that force that was ambushed last year.
At most, the characters' lord will send the players with 25 knights
and a like number of mounted sergeantry (75 KV). The message from
Leodegrance emphasized haste, so the lord owing Leodegrance a favor
sends cavalry only. If the players voice suspicion about another
attempted ambush, they can roll their [Orate] versus the Lord's
[Prudent] (13 or higher) to persuade him to send up to 10 more
sergeants (10 KV). A player is the leader if he is of banneret status
and has a battle of 16 or better. If this is not the case, a banneret
of notable knight standing is added to the group. There is not enough
time to call on family knights unless the GM rules that they are
present in court.
More than likely, this will be the course of action for the players
this year as they may not have a lot of influence in their local
court. Once again, the hill tribes of Cambria lure them in, although
this ambush is due more to gathered intelligence rather than trickery.
Messages, however, travel fast when on the wing.
Before the Ambush, paranoid players can make very difficult Awareness
rolls [Awareness at -10. Success = You see the column being trailed by
a raven or two].
Ambush in Arden
Idurans = 18
Player's Group = 16 or better
Battle Size: Small
Idurans: 11 Norgales Knights, 20 Equites, 25 Mounted Hillmen, 90
Hillmen (143 KV).
Players: 25 knights, 25-35 sergeants (75 to 85 KV).
Players outnumbered 2-1: +5/-5
Ambush: +5/-5 (see below)
Have Idurans and the Relief Force leader roll opposed Battle Rolls,
with Idurans at a +5 since he is setting the ambush. If he wins, he
gets the ambush modifier above as this simulates the ensuing confusion
of the strike.
Round 1: Javelins fly from the trees at a +5 (allow player to roll
Awareness to cancel this modifier). The Cambrians aim at horses, but
there is a 1/6 chance that the javelin flies at a player character.
Throw three javelins per player.
Round 2: Hillmen on foot charge from the sides.
Round 3: As the column commits to the ground troops, mounted
opposition attacks from positions in front and back. The knights
encountered in this round use lances.
The battle becomes unit skirmishes or individual skirmishes, moving in
and out of the trees. Players will be outnumbered two or three to one
most of the time, until numbers dwindle to disallow this ratio.
Idurans and his troops give no quarter and ask for none. Players can
be captured, however. In particular if a player is captured by an
Equites, there is a good chance he will not be killed.
Glory: As skirmish
C +4 No losses
S +0 10% losses, 2% killed, 8% wounded
F -2 50% losses, 25% killed, 25% wounded
Fum -4 75% losses, 50% killed, 25% wounded
03-12 Hillmen, Foot (use Year One Wild Hillman stats)
13-15 Hillmen, mounted (use Year One Wild Hillman chieftan stats)
16-17 Equites (Ordinary (1-3), Mercenary (4-5), or Notable (6))
18 Norgales Knights and Idurans (Famous 1-4, or Extraordinary 5-6,
Idurans is (in)Famous)
03- Total defeat. Friendly knights all dead/unconscious.
04-05 Must Retreat, orderly withdrawl to the North.
06-15 Battle continues.
16-17 Foes retreat. No pursuit.
18+ Total Victory. Hillmen and Knights routed. Pursuit only invites
further ambush by 3-6 more enemy.
The outcome of the Ambush above determines what comes next for this
campaign season for most characters. If they win decisively, the next
step is to march to Stafford. They are unopposed until they reach
Penkridge, where they meet the siege force left by Idurans. They can
attempt to relieve the siege or march on to Stafford. An alternate
course involves marching through to Tarnworth and Carohaise and seeing
the skeleton forces there and hearing of the siege at Penkridge and
the impending siege of Stafford itself.
If the characters only forced a retreat or were forced to retreat,
Idurans uses the guerilla tactics of the Cambrians to harass the
column until it capitulates or returns home. He will then return his
attention to Penkridge, hoping for a victory there and hence to
Stafford to rejoin with Nero.
If the players are defeated, they may be captured and led by chain
gang under guard to Chesire, watching Idurans destroy Penkridge in the
process. They are held for ransom for the year in the City of Legions.
If they showed very good battle prowess, they are taken to Dinas Bran
to be housed instead. GMs should allow a reasonable chance for escape
on the march, reminding characters that they should flee and live to
fight another day instead of battling their way out. In many cases,
they may be too wounded and malnourished to fight for the rest of the
Finally, when the players arrive at Stafford, they find it besieged
also. Nero has taken minimal losses or has been reinforced while he
was waiting in siege. A successful unopposed Battle roll by the
players' group leader puts Nero in a bad position. Seeing a relief
force, Leodegrance takes heart and pours through the gates. Battle is
Battle of Stafford
King Leodegrance = 18
Nero = 17
Player's group = 16+
Battle Size: Small
Nero: 65 knights, 75 Mounted Hillmen, 200 Hillmen (305 KV)
Leodegrance: 50 knights, 140 footmen (175 KV)
Player's force: (varies)
Nero fighting on two fronts -5/+5 (to both player and Cameliard) and
he has to half his battle skill for the first round
Round One: The players arrive just in the nick of time and charge
Nero's flank as he hastily prepares to meet both forces as once (see
Round Two-Six: Normal
Round Seven: Nero retreats seeing to much opposition and him caught
between them. However, the Cambrians retreat in an orderly manner with
cavalry holding the rear (mounted foes only).
King Leodegrance gains an indecisive victory.
Plunder: 1 charger, 1 hill pony, 1 Librum of goods
ACB and Foe Table are the same for the Battle of Market Drayton.
If the players do not take a decisive role in the above battle by
attacking Nero's rear (ie, they were defeated by Idurans and captured)
or they are all in Stafford itself as Cameliardian defenders use the
following table to determine the outcome of the battle.
03 Total defeat. Rout into Stafford or flee to Carohaise (50/50 of
04-05 Orderly retreat into Stafford.
06-15 Continue Battle
16-17 Foes retreat, no plunder
18+ Foes routed back to Norgales, plunder as above.
Be sure to add the force of Idurans if appropriate.
AFTERMATH AND ENDNOTES
The campaign season ends with Nero heading back for the border of
Norgales, much of Cameliard torched and pillaged, but free still and
with an army intact. Player groups are asked to stay in court for the
winter or return in the spring, since to the wonder of King
Leodegrance, Ryons has not yet taken the field. There is more to come
from the fiend, undoubtedly. This is the best case. It is also
possible that Leodegrance had to retreat back into Stafford and is
stuck into a prolonged siege and it is possible that the players are
During the course of the fighting this season, it is appropriate to
ask for [Recognize] rolls for some of the devices the hillmen carry.
About one in six is the same as those devices of the hillmen that
ambushed the players last year.
If the players remain in Cameliard, they are treated with utmost
respect and gratitude. There are chances here for meeting key players
in later phases, so encourage interaction with the king and his
family. Knights from Cameliard who showed great battle prowess are
also given recognition. Perhaps mercenary knights or bachelors become
Some other possibilities exist for the characters. If they have
discovered the culprit behind the ambush, it may be time to talk and
maybe apologize to Orofoise or encourage them to avenge an insult to
their good name. Other allies may need to be found to stop what could
be a major drive by Ryons in the next year. Again, oppurtunity for
winter solos and roleplaying abounds as the players call in favors
from family and others.
Meanwhile, King Ryons plots his next move. His foray this year was a
small expedition to test the water and hopefully weaken his foe. Next
year he brings his full force to bear on a struggling Cameliard. Then
the south will be his.
End Year Two.
MORE WINTER DECISIONS
What has happened before depends a lot on how well the player
characters tackled Idurans and Nero in the previous year. The ideal
for King Ryons is for Penkridge to have been destroyed, any southern
allies smashed or occupied with his neighbors, and Stafford to be
under siege. The ideal for the characters is for Cameliard to be
injured but have its army intact and still based at Stafford.
During the Winter Phase, it is imperative that players call on all
their resources available to combat Ryons, whether it be family
knights or an army from their baronies. If the characters are within
Stafford while it is besieged, perhaps a daring rush through the
picket lines to allow the non-combatants to flee upriver and escape to
gather reinforcements is in order. They should only fight Hillmen
(one per character) led by a mercenary knight.
The players may have been driven off by Idurans. If this is the case,
let them return to their respective lords, appear in court and report.
Even if they are in the ideal situation, King Leodegrance will insist
that any knight of vassal rank or higher appeal to his lord for aid.
Players may also take the initiative in searching for reinforcements
back at their own home or in neighboring baronies and dukedoms.
Of the neighbors, only Lambor is wholly unable to send reinforcements
as it is involved in internal conflict. Wurensis is relatively stable
and has an army of 70 knights and 120 soldiers. Clarence has 100
knights and 300 soldiers available, and Gloucester also has 100
knights and 300 soldiers, although Duke Morvid regularly hires
mercenaries (about 200 foot) to raid Clarence. Other places not
connected to the characters will not send troops.
Obviously, some money may be needed to entice the Duke or Baron to
act. A personal gift such as a charger (or the equivalent in librum)
may grant an interview, but then it is up to role-play. The GM should
adjudicate how well the player states his/her case and if undecided
then roll an [Orate]. This goes for players going to their home county
Wurensis, the next victim in line for Ryons will send all of its
troops if the GM was moved by the oration (or on a Critical Succes if
an [Orate] roll was used) or half on a normal success (this is up to
200KV). He will send a token force of 30 knights if the character
fails to persuade. If the [Orate] roll is used, give players a +10 if
they are from Wurensis.
Clarence will be tougher to persuade, sending at most 50 knights and
100 soldiers (which is up to 150 KV). Characters from Clarence will
get a +5 on [Orate]. The Lord of Clarence will also ask foreign player
characters for help in the following year against the evil Duke Morvid
Duke Morvid of Gloucester is actually more generous. While he will at
most send 50 knights and 100 soldiers like Clarence, he will turn over
the command of up to all of his mercenaries if the players foot the
bill at the rate of 5 librum/25 soldiers (13 KV). These are Irish
Raiders looking for plunder but will still have a loyalty of 10 to
their employer (+1d6 if of Irish origin). Likewise, a player from
Gloucester gets a +5 to [Orate] and foreign players will be asked on
oath to help against Clarence next year.
Players cannot get both Clarence and Gloucester to help. Both dukes
will ask whether or not the other will be or has been recruited. If
deceived [Deceitful check] and both send armies to the field, they
will fight each other and end up quitting the field. Players will
become persona non grata in both locations and vassals will be
stripped of their lands or worse for such a deception.
Finally, players can attempt to get Orofoise to avenge its honor from
year one. They command 75 knights and 150 soldiers. They will send all
their troops if the GM likes the player's speech and players did not
do any significant damage in an attack on Oroquelenes. If they did
attack, they better bring lots of gifts. If the player truly succeeds
(critical on an [Orate]) he impresses a local, tribal king who joins
the cause (either Clun (148KV) or Godower (83 KV), but not both; see
In all cases (except Orofoise who sends the wily Sir Tathal
[Battle=17]), an Extraordinary Knight leads the force with players as
unit commanders if they have a Battle of 16 or more. Characters with
18 or better at this skill may well lead the force if they are natives
of the dukedom or earldom.
Meanwhile... King Ryons Moves
Meanwhile, King Ryons has not been sitting idle. During the Fall and
Winter, he and some of his elite guard, important chieftans, and
several women, including his mother, went on an expedition into the
mountain reaches of Cambria. When he returns, the tale filters through
the ranks that he has recovered the Crown of Ordovices from its
magical site, the Court of the Crown. Whether, this is true or not,
the tribes believe it and many of the reluctant tribesmen rush to fill
the ranks of the King of Norgales. For gameplay, many of the warriors
can now call in a Passion of Loyalty [King of Norgales] in a pinch.
The value will be at 2d6+6 for warriors and at least 16 for elite
A Last Chance for Captured Players
In the worst cast scenario where the players are captured, they will
hear word of this while in the City of Legions and begin to feel the
fervor in the air especially among the native warriors. If they are at
Dinas Bran, the Raven witch Cabal attempts to seduce warriors to the
cause. If successful, the players will have a high Love for the Raven
witches and a Loyalty to Ryons. The referee should play this out as he
or she deems appropriate. If the characters resist, give them one last
chance to escape. If they botch this, their heads become the newest
adornements on the walls at Dinas Bran.
The Fate of Stafford
If Stafford is beseiged, and the characters bring reinforcements,
replay the Battle of Stafford with losses taken from both parties that
occured in the last battle if appropriate. Of course, the players may
have a large force. Nero has not been reinforced. In fact, he has been
re-called to Dinas Bran. He will fight a few rounds and retreat if he
still has a larger force (in KV) than the opposition. If he is
outmatched, he retreats in orderly fashion with knights in the
rearguard. There is only one round against mounted foes in this case.
In the best case, Leodegrance has mustered his forces and his allies
at Stafford. He decides to take the initiative and lead his main force
towards the City of Legions. He gathers his full strength (100
knights, 300 soldiers) leaving only the wounded and old behind. If
Nero is forced to retreat, Leodegrance makes the next move and decides
to lead the army in the same direction. He will only do this if he has
significant reinforcements. This means at least half of Wurensis, and
half of Clarence or Gloucester. Orofoise is a bonus. If not, he learns
of the huge army of Ryons amassing and retreats to Carohaise,
conceding Stafford. This would be the end of the scenario and
Cameliard is subjected to raid after raid until 510, when Arthur comes
to his aid.
RYONS MAKES HIS FINAL MOVE
Ryons regathers his army at the foot of the Castle of the Raven.
However, Leodegrance almost ruins his plans by acting too quickly.
Only the tribal warriors of Norgales reinforced by his knights,
Cheshire (who only sends knights and warriors, footsoldiers remain at
the City of Legions), and Pase gather to see Ryons raise the Crown of
Ordovices. Fortunately, he has aerial messengers and sends these to
Amans and the tribes of the Peaks. He orders them to harass northern
Cameliard with due haste.
Although not at full strength, Ryons's army of conquest is still
large. The forces meet on the grounds outside of the burned out motte
and bailey castle of Malpas. At first only leading elements of the
forces meet (players acting as scouts could skirmish with some mounted
Hillmen). Ryons stalls so his army can cross the creeks that feed into
the River Dee. Leodegrance falls back to some higher ground and makes
a stand. Ryons with his numerical superiority and his army's battle
fever, charges anyway.
Battle of Malpas
King Leodegrance (Battle = 18)
King Ryons (Battle = 19)
Battle Size: Medium
King Leodegrance: 165 knights, 438 footsoldiers. This could be more if
players are really good at convincing lords or have money for
mercenaries. This does not include players and their family knights
either (589 KV minimum).
King Ryons: 135 knights, 300 mounted hillmen, 1300 warriors (1220 KV).
King Leodegrance outnumbered -5/+5
King Leodegrance on higher ground +5/-5
Round 1: Hillmen charge up the hill throwing javelins against charging
knights. Roll twice against the characters horse. If the player is
still mounted he has a +5 on top of any other bonuses against his
Round 2-4: Normal.
Round 5: A dark fog encompasses King Leodegrance's Unit. -5 to Unit
In the Fog: Players can attempt to enter the fog cloud if they are not
engaged. Once there, they will see strangely clad knights enaging and
driving King Leodegrance's command unit back. The characters are now
involved in a skirmish between 10 farie knights and the 5 remaining
Cameliard knights with their king. Conduct this as one round of heavy
fighting. At one point, let the characters have the opportunity to
take a blow for Leodegrance. If he or she does, let the farie battle
end suddenly. Even the unseelie cannot fight such sacrificing foes.
Round 6: The fog cloud disappears with either Leo badly wounded and
alone, with dead knights all around him, or letting out a battle cry
for victory. He fumbles or criticals his battle roll: -5 or +5 to Unit
Round 7: If Leodegrance criticals his battle roll above, King Ryons
loses his crown. If not, Leo or the next in command calls a retreat to
Round 8: Rout of hill men. Enemy knights attack with a vengeance this
round. One more round of purusit possible.
Decisive Victory or Indecisive Defeat are possible.
Plunder: if a rout, 1-2 chargers, 1-2 hill ponies, 1 librum of goods.
C +4 No losses
S +2 10% losses, 2% killed, 8% wounded
PS +0 25% losses, 5% killed, 16% wounded, 4% captured
F -2 50% losses, 10% killed, 25% wounded, 15% captured
Fum -4 75% losses, 50% killed, 25% captured
01-10 Hillmen, Foot (use Year One Wild Hillman stats)
11-13 Hillmen, mounted (use Year One Wild Hillman chieftan stats)
14-17 Equites (Ordinary (1-3), Mercenary (4-5), or Notable (6))
18-19 Norgales Knights (possibly Nero or Idurans if they still live)
20 Ryons and command group (Famous 1-4, or Extraordinary 5-6, Ryons
is Extraordinary with the physical stats of a Small Giant, or one
could use Sir Turquine's stats)
See above for battle outcome.
Now the players will return home, hopefully with victory. However,
upon their return, they hear of raiding in northern Cameliard. They
could mount up again to drive the raiders away. If they are healthy
vassals of Cameliard they will be forced to do so. They may well lead
a force of 20 knights and 30 footsoldiers (plus any other characters).
Raiding forces can be hunted for and can be from Amans (5 knights, 25
warriors) or the Peaks (5 knights, 20 soldiers, and 25 warriors) or
both as the GM wishes. Treat these encounters as skirmishes.
If Leodegrance is victorious, players may well be the heroes of the
Battle. They may be offered lands if landless and asked for loyalty in
return. All will definitely be allowed to recuperate and will always
be welcome. Ryons will head home in disgust. He slays a few of the
kings who fled early. Also, he can continue to harass Cameliard from
the fringes. It takes him until 510 to re-amass an army and regain the
Crown. Then, he attacks deep into Cameliard.
If Ryons is victorious, he consolidates his position, occupies
Stafford and raids the interior of Cameliard. This continues until 510
where Ryons makes to finish Leodegrance once and for all. Of course,
Arthur raised in Penylln comes to his aid.
This Appendix outlines the events of "Ryons, the High King", to help
the gamemaster keep a handle on the events.
* Ryons creates conflict between Orofoise and its neighbors.
Battle: Ambush in Orofoise
* Players may lead attacks on Orofoise.
Optional Battles: Assaults on Oroquelenes and Shrewsbury
* King Ryons invades Cameliard. An army led by Nero marches South
towards Stafford, and is met by King Leodegrance at Market Drayton.
Battle: Battle of Market Drayton
Afterwards, Leodegrance retreats to Stafford, and Nero continues his
* Meanwhile, Idurans leads an army plundering the towns of Cameliard.
After destroying several small towns, he sieges Penkridge.
Battle: Siege at Penkridge
After four days of siege, Idurans leads part of the army south to
attack a relief force. This is likely the player's introduction for
Battle: Ambush in Arden
* If the relief force survived the ambush, it may move to relieve the
siege at Penkridge:
Optional Battle: Siege at Penkridge (cont.)
They can also continue on to Stafford, where they find that Nero has
already laid siege:
Battle: Battle of Stafford
* Cameliard seeks allies from its neighbors: Lambor, Wurensis,
clarence, Gloucester and Orofoise.
* Ryons recovers the Crown of Ordovice.
* If Stafford is still sieged, reinforcements may try to free it:
Optional Battle: Battle of Stafford
* King Leodegrance begins moving his army North, forcing Ryons to act
prematurely. The two armies meet outside the burned out castle of
Battle: Battle of Malpas
* Afterwards, raiding continues in North Cameliard, due to Amans and
* The campaign ends with either Ryons retreating, or Ryons occupying
Stafford, depending on the results of the Battle of Malpas
The End for now...