"There's been a lot of fire -- a lot of fire -- and some odd (but fun) people, a lady I don't trust ('my god told me I'm so important,' blah blah blah), guys in robes who all look alike to me, friends who employ questionable tactics, and an unnerving lack of restraint. Also ghost pirates, delicious fortune cookies, some very catchy music, and a hippogriff! Oh, and a mad crown and something very, very bad that we may or may not be able to stop. I gotta tell you, I'm not really sure what's going on here." -- Red
About[edit | edit source]
Ancients Alive (Full title Tales of Quelmar: Ancients Alive) was a 20+ Player Campaign that began as a "campaign with a lower-case c" that started in Summer 2019. Starting at level 3, the storyline took players up to level 8 over 15 months. In early 2020, the Campaign closed its doors to new players, and ultimately finished in early June 2020.
Format[edit | edit source]
Each session of Ancients Alive is intended to stand alone as its own adventure, with no immediate cliffhangers or other elements that require constant attendance by players. In this way, the player base can be in constant rotation.
Starting from the 25th session, Ancients Alive began long-form storytelling (as a traditional campaign) to finish the story that the many players had began, the story revolved around Quelmar's Arctic Autumn.
Plot[edit | edit source]
The sessions involve many small quests and missions, but ultimately revolved around a realm-wide hunt for four magical artifacts:
Themes[edit | edit source]
With several factions searching to obtain or destroy the magical artifacts, the campaign somewhat had an "Alliance of the Week" feel. The characters fought both against and alongside earth, water, and fire clerics. The Grumbaran NPC that sliced a character in half one session would be training characters two sessions later. This team lacking traditional heroes instead often found themselves pitted against typical heroes, such as the Escapals, Golkont the Hawk Mage, and a paladin.
The players of the campaign went on a realm wide scavenger hunt to find the four Tools of the Primordial Ancients, they used a table they posted on the wall to track its progress:
|Item||Where is it?||Who wants it?||How can it be desroyed?||What Can it Do|
|Place it on Bruneld Redmane's head||Command fire, cause ruptures, explosions, summon fire monsters, powerful and highly offensive-driven weapon.|
|Staff||Howling Crag||Fiends||Use the Crown on it?||Defensive Driven|
List of Campaign Casualties[edit | edit source]
-The Baby Roper
-Eddie the Kobold
-Numerous other Kossuthians
-Norixius Clan Members
Ancients Alive, by Rosin the Bard[edit | edit source]
[This is the full story of the campaign, with several facts wrong, over the course of their adventure, the team had purposefully been accrediting Ynnis for things he didn't do in an attempt to make him famous, and as such, the story the realm knows is very skewed from the actual events to make him out as the hero.]
The Elements. Fire, Earth, Air, and Water. As different as they are the same. These four powers were always fated to fight, and only a master of magic and a champion of friendship could pluck the strings of fate and bring the elements together again. This is the story of that plucking hero….Ynnis [Innis] Valenford. The elf who saved the realm.
Many believe the story started in the arctic, but in my travels and research around the realm, I have learned the true story, and it starts in the Bard's Paradise: Galik.
Last year's blackout is commonly said to have been caused by the Flaming Crown of Kossuth. But what few know is that Ynnis had secret connections in the city at the time…his best friend Chet was a powerful noble in the city, and Ynnis learned through his friend that the Crown was in the city.
Knowing that only he alone could organize a team powerful enough to destroy the crown, Ynnis began the longest and most complicated plan a poet could ever put together. A plan that involved finding the perfect members of his team. But first he needed to kill off the entire clan of Banites (Bay-knights) who were after the crown.
After extinguishing most of the Banites, his next step was to recruit someone who could wield and control the power of the flames, none other than Rowan Buckman, the Ambleside Arsonist. Rowan and his wife Midnight were said to have burned down their entire village in a raging fire worthy of Asmodeus himself. Ynnis knew playing with fire was difficult, so he conquered the raging devils by taking them down with the help of his bugbear assistant Grindseed.
With Rowan and Midnight conquered, Ynnis and his best friend Chet now had someone who could wield the crown. It was then that fate threw them a curve ball in the form of Coseismus, the stone-faced acolyte, and his own wife Frory, a cold-hearted woman on a quest for redemption.
The Hotheaded Woman and the Frost Queen immediately took to arms against each other, and only the large heart of Ynnis Valenford could bridge fire and flame. But not without consequences. As part of the ultimate elemental battle, the entire port town of Warukami [Wah-roo-kah-me] was frozen solid. Ynnis had many friends, but no ship, and he and his companions were trapped in the city unless they could do something about it.
The stories aren't straight on what happened next, but it is said that thanks to Ynnis' pet cat Jedit [J'deet], the Orb of the Gales was conjured out of thin air….he learned in Warukami that his cat had secretly a guardian genie, and seeing that his master was in a rut, Jedit wished the Orb into the team's possession when they needed it most.
Now able to fly through the air effortlessly, Ynnis and his friends made it to the Eastern Coast of Amusa, where the Grumbaran temple lay. It was in the temple that Ynnis not only found the Staff of Grumbar, but a teleporter that would whisk him and his friends half way around the realm, where they suddenly appeared near the city of Dardin.
Many people know of the tragic events in Dardin and the death of Golkont the Hawk Mage…but did you know that Ynnis sacrificed traded his own life for Golkont's in his most heroic act of friendship thus far? It's true…but in death, Golkont knew that the realm had no use for adventuring celebrities, and it needed someone powerful enough to destroy the four Artifacts of the Ancients.
With the full ability to control the earth, Ynnis wielded the Staff of Grumbar and created an unstoppable creature of death, who could camouflage and shapeshift…Ynnis would name his new construct "Melvin".
Together, Ynnis, Chet, Melvin, Jedit, Rowen, Midnight, Coseismus, Frory, and Grindseed joined forced with a local bartender by the name of Edna to create the most legendary feast in history…their final feast before the Artic Autumn set in. Ynnis watched helplessly as the frosts devoured his friends, and the fellowship he worked so hard was broken. All of his friends were forced to run away to warmer climates…except for his best buddy Chet.
As Chet and Ynnis clutched each other in the cold, Chet promised he would make things right again…he set about creating the most complicated ambush the realm ever knew. Chet was not only a rich noble, but a brilliant strategist. With the perfect plan in place, Ynnis set out across the realm, flying to the four corners to build an army of every friend he had every made.
Being the master of friendship, this army was hundreds large, and full of Storm Giants.
The final ambush was perfect, with Ynnis' giant rock construct Melvin landing devastating blow after devastating blow, reducing the villain who created the ice age into dust.
In the end, all four artifacts were reunited, and using Rowan, Grindseed, Frory, and a kobold named Maverick, the four friends held hands, channeling the full force of the artifacts through their bodies, they destroyed the Elemental Ancients, and in the process lost their lives.
Ynnis has never been the same since. And he regrets not being able to give his own life. That is why he does not do book signings in public, nor show his face at events like this one. His sorrow outweighs his pride for saving the realm. Let us now take a moment of silence to thank the great Elven hero Ynnis Valenford and his many companions for freeing us from that Arctic Autumn.
Trivia[edit | edit source]
- The End Credits included a song called "Rather it Be September" which was a mash up of a song by Earth, Wind, and Fire and a song by Clean Bandit. Each band being representative of the two major player factions AFEW and Stealth Squad.
- Additionally, the lyrics to the Clean Bandit song ("Rather Be") include references to the campaign such as "It's a shot in the dark" and "We're different and the same, gave you a different name" (in reference to Yro/Bruneld/Midnight) and "With every step we take, Kyoto to the Bay" (Kyoto being a major city like Galik, and Jewelspar being on Dragon Turtle Bay)