Demonwars #1 – Abellican Monks

Today i’ll divert from my Tiny Gork productions and talk alittle about the playtest package i received due to backing a new RPG system on kickstarter based upon R.A.Salvatore’s World of Corona.

I have loved the World of Corona ever since i read the very first book set in this World.

I’d like to explain what it is about Corona that so enraptured me and then im going to go over the note worthy content of the playtest pdf spread out over a few blog posts, everything is easier in smaller bites after all. Until I have playtested i wont be looking too much on the mechanical crunch of Things.

This will be a regular Friday posting for the next few weeks 🙂

The Fascinating World of CORONA!

Stranger Elves
First thing that Struck me was how different the elves were compared to your usual DnD like fantasy Worlds, normally elves are described as somewhat thinner than humans sometimes shorter or taller depending on the World. But Elves in Corona was described as very lithe fragile beings, to me they felt like an overgrown pixie perhaps and they hid away and normally shunned mortals. They did however take upon themselves the duty of training rangers and through them they try to impart their wisdom upon the mortal humans.

Society and politics
Secondly, i throughly enjoyed how the political scene was written and how the various power structures in the society worked to further their interrests. The Abellican church in particular was a joy to read about, how some monks were not above personal pride and the chase for political power and how it all affected the World around them.

Gemstone Magic
Thirdly, the magic in Corona was exclusive to wielders of gemstones and the Abellican church were the only faction that could obtain new gemstones on a remote Island. The way magic was used by attuning oneself to gemstones and tapping them for power was to me a Whole new way of looking at magic in a fantasy setting and i loved it!

All of these Things combined led to a powerfully immersive setting that pulled me under and when monks began to use martial arts mixed with magical use of gemstones it just kept getting better and better!

So these were some of the Things that I most anticipated to read some rules about in the playtest package.

The playtest package contents

Elves
The elves seems so far to be omitted, in the playtest package atleast. So i will have to wait and see if they show up in the final product.

Monks
So far Monks are the only class available in the rules.

Monks and martial arts have always been popular in fantasy roleplay settings, in my experience at least and it goes for myself personally as well. So naturally i was excited to see what they had done with these Abellican Monks!
There are 8 major Abbeys and each has their own order within the church:
St.-Mere-Abelle
St. Honce
St. Precious
St. Belfour
St. Avelyn
St. Rontlemore
St. Bondabruce
St. Gwendolyn-by-the-Sea
Each order grants +1 to a stat and a free rank in 2 skills.

Demonwars uses something called Techniques, being a long time DnD 3ed player i relate to these abit like FEATS in the d20 system. These techniques are contained in 4 different Disciplines taught in the Abellican church:
The Discipline of St. Bruce – Offensive
The Discipline of St. Belfour – Defensive
The Discipline of St. Gwendolyn – control and enhances
The Discipline of St. Saint Avelyn – magic mastery of the gemstones

Techniques are layered in five Tiers and to advance in Tier technique your character needs to have two techniques from the previous Tier level. Example: wanting to aquire a Tier 2 technique you need to have aquired 2xTier1 techniques.

I’ll throw in a few sample techniques:
Discipline of St. Bruce
Tier 1 – Flurry of Blows: New Action: Flurry of Blows. Costs 1 point of Balance. Make up to two melee attacks,
with a -10 penalty to hit for each. The attacks may target different opponents.

Discipline of St. Belfour
Tier 2 – Stability of the Mountain: +5 Defense Rating. You can’t be forced to move by any character unless you
allow it.

Discipline of St. Gwendolyn
Tier 3 – Motion: +1 Balance. -2 Initiative Bonus. (Lower initiative is better.)

Discipline of St. Avelyn
Tier 4 – Gemstone Veterancy: +1 Focus. +5 Magic Attack Rating.
Tier 5 – Greater Spellshaping: After casting a spell, you may retain one additional charge in a Gemstone of your
choice. Prerequisite: Spellshaping.

Besides Techniques monks are also taught various skills, these resemble your typical skill list from most RPGs:
history
diplomacy
medicine
swimming
and so on…

The Class statistics
The Monk class itself has a few stats:

Base Speed: 25 feet
Base Hit Points: 8 + Endurance bonus
Balance: 2 + Will bonus.
Focus: 2 + Will bonus
Base Defense Rating: 50 + Agility bonus
Attack Rating: +0
Skill Points: 3
Technique Points: 2 + Intellect bonus

The system itself is primarily d100 system with % chance of succes on checks, for the combat there has been introduced something called Balance which can be used to various effects like dodging attacks or using techniques. It is meant to give fights more tactical flexibility where you weigh the pro’s and con’s of using your balance pool on a particular technique or Dodge.

All in all i find the monks interresting, there seems to be more emphasis on techniques instead of particular class stats. I am not dissappointed by the Abellican Monks they seem on paper to live up to the vision and feel i got from Mr. Salvatores books and am left itching to try out this class in this particular World setting.

Next time I will go over the gemstone magic of Demonwars:Reformation.

till then Gork ya laters!

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