Empire of Etienne

Out of Etienne: The Exiling
alternatively: I'm a Badass Outlaw and You Can Too!

On Sunday, I volunteered to take notes and post them for all to read. This is my attempt to make good on that promise. As we get more stuff up here, I’ll back-edit posts to provide helpful (and educational!) links to wiki pages and character sheets.

4-22 I added some more detailed information about Etienne’s history, government, and calendar. I also apparently misspelled/misheard the name of the starting town. That has been remedied. It’s Holmestrand with an ‘L’.

4-23 Yeah, I know I edited just yesterday, but I want to make sure this information is right in case you’re scheming something for tomorrow…

Wait, what are we doing again?
If you were somehow unaware, we’re playing Pathfinder. You can find character sheets online (or ask me about my lovely handy dandy super automatic idiot proof spreadsheet of wonder) along with books. If you’re in the email list, you should have gotten a torrent of the full published series in pdf. It’s an absolutely huge chunk of files (the main book is 500+ pages…), but it’s really great to have. Yes, Virginia, they are text-searchable.

House Rules I’ll add these as they become apparent and important.

  1. We are watching carrying weights and following encumbrance rules. So, uhh, you might want to leave that printing press at home.

  2. Money has weight. Every ten coins is a pound. If your wallet is starting to weigh you down, you can trade the coinage in for notes, which are negligible in weight.

  3. Try your best to keep numbers to yourself, meaning, don’t be the guy rolling and then adding out loud. Just say your total. This makes things a bit more interesting.

  4. Going along with this in-the-interest-of-fun-and-interest theme, don’t just play smart, play in character. If your character is impulsive, play him impulsively, not just safely!

Campaign Notes
Sunday’s session was mostly about getting on our feet. Our adventuresome adventuring adventurers, all from different corners of kingdom Etienne, find themselves exiled to a small port town called Homestrand Holmestrand situated on the banks of a trade-important waterway. The terms of the punishment are simple: move north and tame the dangers of the North Marches for the good of society, or don’t and be killed by the magical brand emblazoned on your breast. (Hehe, I said “breast”…)

We were given a choice to work in town to earn some dough. We voted to work for three months and leave in month 6 (until we get month names in Etienne nailed down, we will just use numbers) Brynmor. Having a 10 month calendar, month 6 Brynmor is late summer. We also made a plan that our first venture into the wilds will be brief and will be intended as a scouting expedition. This said, our party has the intention to return before winter hits.

History, Geography, Topography, Sociology, Archeology, Smartology
We were also given some basic history and background. I’ll just bullet this to make it a bit easier to peruse.

Etienne in General

  • Etienne is an empire established when a duder named Etienne was unhappy with the government many, many years ago. He led a sort of revolution and overthrew the ruling class. This event marked year zero for the new calendar (the present year is 2275). He kicked the bucket as a more regulated system was being drafted, and his right-hand-man Ewan Carbrey took over. In response to a (some say all-too-convenient) public outcry for a monarch, he took a seat on the throne. He quickly pushed through a version of the constitution that he and Etienne had crafted, and this document established the constitutional monarchy in place now. While the king is technically a single executive, he does take advice from a parliament and a hand-picked cabinet of officials.

  • The government is generally lawful and benevolent and is headed by a constitutionally-limited king.

  • Society is generally just, and racism is not a huge problem.

  • The ten months of Etienne’s calendar in order are: 1) Helena, 2) Jarrod, 3) Mabon, 4) Paderau, 5) Elkanah, 6) Brynmor, 7) Magdalene, 8) Owain, 9) Etienne, 10) Carbrey. In the words of our dice-rolling deity, “[The names] refer to the names of heroes instrumental in the founding of the kingdom (these are their last names, save for Etienne). Each month has one holiday representing the day on which said hero gained their fame or performed their action of greatness.” Each month is 36 days, and weeks are nine days long (making Mondays suck all that much more…). If you’re lazy, that means four weeks to a month. The year is 360 days exactly. No quarter days in this here empire! (What with these people’s seeming obsession for mathematical ease and precision, they probably use the metric system too. From now on, you’ll need to convert all weights to kilos and calculate encumbrance like that. Kidding.)

The North Marches, Exile, and You

  • Undesireables You and your band of cohorts are sent to a lawless region called the North Marches, a.k.a. Australia. While this sentence is technically an exile, for many it amounts to a death sentence, or at the very least, a low-maintenance oubliette. Note that this sentence is sort of a “legal grey area”. Mr. King-Man didn’t want to kill us, but he had to get rid of us. So he just kind of washed his hands of us.

  • The North Marches are north of the river and can be seen from the walls of Holmestrand. Surveying the wilds lends little information other than they appear heavily wooded (“This is no place for a pony, Bill”).

  • As aforementioned, the only real rule to your exile is that you can’t go south on pain of death.

Holmestrand

  • Holmestrand generally operates under the golden rule (“He who has the gold makes the rules.”) and is currently ruled by a human trade lord. This guy is a smarmy prick, but does his job pretty decently. He technically answers to the king, just as any wild west sheriff would have technically answered to a state governor. However, what with the nature of the area, this man gets little attention or supervision from the capitol.

  • Holmestrand is a shipping hub and little more. It’s peak business season is mid-summer.

I think that’s about it for wrapping up Sunday. Make sure to get your character sheet ready to roll for next time.

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