Though known as Ryan’s Ruin by sages, Rhamsandron by wizards, and Normoot by Altanians, the city came to be known as the City State of the Invincible Overlord and its former name under the Dragon Empire was forgotten.”
Population: 80,000 (20,000 able bodied)
Technological Level: 8
Racial Composition: Mixed (human 72%, dwarf 16%, halfling 5%, elf 3%, others 4%)
Average Citizen: Since this city is the center of the northern Wilderlands, even the lowest person is better than the average city dweller (usually at least a Com3 or higher, except children) with shopkeepers usually being even more skilled (Exp5 or higher, often much higher). There are few pure commoners within the city walls. It is not unusual to see even common NPCs with class levels appropriate for the city, such as rogue or fighter. Many denizens have seen extensive military service or are retired adventurers and visitors should beware — this is no village of common oafs.
Ruler: His Most Terrible Majesty, the Invincible Overlord, Heigeylik the Overlord
Other Important Figures: Grand Vizier Balarnega (LE male human Ftr16)
Resources: The greatest market and trade center of the Northern Wilderlands other than Viridistan
Allies: The dwarves of Thunderhold, the Skandiks at Croy, Modron, Byrny, the sea monster Maelstron
Enemies: Virdistan and the Green Emperor, the Skandiks at Ossary, the Pirates of Hagrost, Orcs of the Purple Claw from Dearthwood, Warwik
Located on a bluff on the western edge of Dearthwood on the Estuary of Roglaroon, the City State of the Invincible Overlord (or just the “City State” as it has come to be known) was founded in 3075 BCCC (“Balozkinar’s Corrected Commoner’s Calendar”) on the ruins of what is believed to be the ancient capital of the long lost Dragon Empire of the Orichalans.
Though known as Ryan’s Ruin by sages, Rhamsandron by wizards, and Normoot by Altanians, the city came to be known as the City State of the Invincible Overlord and its former name under the Dragon Empire was forgotten. The title “Invincible Overlord” has been held by every ruler of the City State since its creation. Because the city was initially founded by a dwarven hero, the city became home to a large expatriate population of dwarves and is allied to the dwarven city of Thunderhold to the north. Many years ago, Lucius the Great — a Tharbrian warlord — took advantage of a civil war and he and his allied clans swept eastwards and conquered the City State. Since Lucius’s reign several hundred years ago, the City State has come to dominate the region.
Though the City State is situated at the intersection of the ancient Rorystone Road, most trade is done by ship, as the Estuary of Roglaroon allows large drafted ships to sail inland as far as the City State. As a result, the Estuary is thick with pirates who prey on this trade.
Though few know his true name, the current Invincible Overlord is Heigeylik the Overlord, a cruel ruler whose elite group of assassins and secret police known as the Black Lotus roam the city and the surrounding lands enforcing his will and eliminating rivals.
The City State is plagued by the Orcs of the Purple Claw from nearby Dearthwood and from the fell beasts of the Troll Fens and Mermist Marshes to the northwest and southwest. The Overlord has had several strongholds built or occupied by those loyal to him to keep these creatures in check. He has even posted rewards for their slaughter.
Despite its labyrinthine laws and evil reputation, the City State of the Invincible Overlord is a popular destination for adventurers of all types and is regularly visited by most merchants and traders. Most visitors depend upon the fact that virtually anything can be bought or sold in the City State, so long as the proper taxes are paid. Sale or purchase of information about the Overlord’s armies, armaments, ships, or defenses is considered high treason, but the complex laws and regulations of the City State do not prevent the sale of any other item, creature, or person.
Imposing simply by its size and reputation, the City State is open to creatures of all races, religions and backgrounds willing to follow its laws. Although the population is predominantly human (or human-related, such as the barbarian altanians and fierce amazons), goblins, orcs, trolls, ogres and demonic houris can be seen on the city streets along with less frequent encounters with a wide variety of other creatures. A stroll down any street of the City State brings the sights, sounds, and smells of a thriving city, but visitors should remember that laws here are designed to protect the interests of the Overlord, commerce and the creation of new wealth, not individuals. Violence breaks out often, with the jaded citizens simply turning and walking away from the scene of a crime.
The beautiful palaces, imposing towers, fabulous temples, and more ordinary buildings of the City State are stacked on foundations and dungeons thousands of years old. Built upon the ruins of ancient cities, rumors of wealth hidden in deep catacombs and bardic tales of hidden palaces beneath the earth circulate through the lands. While few travelers act on such tales, a majority of visitors to the City State go out of their way to visit some of the most magnificent locations, as well as those somewhat darker, more frightening locales spoken of in songs and tales.
An elaborate judicial system maintains order in the City State. Constables, guardsmen, deputies, sheriffs, marines, knights, and a secret police — the famed Black Lotus — enforce a chaotic but uniform peace on the various quarrelsome inhabitants. The judicial system allows for different courts for clergy, merchants, nobles, and other factions, creating differences in the punishments for certain crimes. If PCs run afoul of the law, they will most certainly require the assistance of a litigation trickster for their defense.
About the Overlord
The outward appearance of the Overlord is that of fit Barbarian, with the keen eyes and panther-like gate common to those raised to the long-hunting breed. He is not especially tall, standing only 6 feet, at a muscular 182 pounds. He prefers Light Armor, Leathers, Bracers, Tall-Boots, and Gloves, as is common to horse-troops. He often tops his raiment with a long-feathered Helm when outdoors, as is the fashion among Viridian Cavalry Officers and Horselords the Elphand Lands. This Personal Helm is Silver with Electrum accents of Conquest; a gift from his Second-Favorite Wife, an Amazon named Joi.
His preference for Gloves likely springs from a wish to conceal his only Physical Defect, as he was born with two Left Hands. The deformity is apparent from just below the elbow of his right arm where the muscles are inversed. It causes him no lack of strength or movement, for he is quite Ambidextrous, but can make shaking hands and greetings awkward. The rumor amongst his adversaries is that “his Right Arm bears the Hand of Margonne,” the Devious God of Evil Plans. Psychologically, this boon plays well for Heigeylik, especially when dealing with those of Viridistan.
Heigeylik the Overlord (NE 11th LVL FTR, HTK 57, AC 13*, SL 20, STR 16*, SPD 14*, INT 17, WIS 13,CON 16*, DEX 18*, CHA 14, wields a +2 Vorpal Blade, wears a Coriptis Dagger*)
Blessed by Coripitis, Goddess of Berserkers and Battle Lust, this Dancing Dagger has the Ability to Berserk Once @ Hour (Doubling Speed to 4 Hits @ r). It does 1d10+6 Pips @ Hit. His primary Weapon, the Vorpal Blade of Terrible Swiftness carries a +2 to Hit, Doing 2d10+11 Pips @ Hit, Shatters All Armer it Contacts, and Carries a Chance (PROB 20%) of total Atomic Absorption when cleaving Living Flesh. Atomic Absorption throws Beings Irretrievably into the Fey Realm (an Ethereal Twilight devoid of both Oxygen and Gravity). Only Divine Intervention can alter the action of the Vorpal Blade.
Although only 1 in 3 sons and 1 in 6 daughters sired by one of Dragon-Blood will inherit the Draigengrym (Blood of the Dragon-Kings) to pass to future generations; Heigeylik is one such being of this legendary bloodline. In times of fight or flight, or if seriously injured, his Blood will Rise and change several aspects of his physical being. If his HTK falls below 26 pips (HTK 50%); his Body will Fortify (+2 to AC and CON), he will require less Oxygen (can Hold Breath up to 1 Hour), will have Increased Vigor (+1 to STR, SPD, and DEX).
The only outward change brought on by the Draigengrym is that his pupils will become oval and tapered. This is called the Sarffaug (or Serpent’s Eye) and anyone held within this Gaze may become Mesmerized (PROB 70%, DUR 1d12 turns). He will also Gain a Regenerative Bonus in Healing of 1d3 pips @ turn. Once HTK is healed above 50%, the Draigengrym dwindles as if to sleep, and all physical aspects then return to the normal state of being. There is no evidence to suggest that Heigeylik can conjure any of these powers by will.
His Personal Items, often worn at Formal Gatherings or while presiding as Overlord, are his Crown of Telepathy, Ring of Regeneration, Sceptre of Waymaking, and a Necklace of Magic Missiles. At any meeting of import, or while seated on his throne, there is little Chance (PROB 20%) that 1 of these Personal Items will Not be on his person, and much smaller Likelihood (PROB 5%) of he Disregarding 2 of them. When not on his person, they are in a Locked Case in his Personal Quarters. He will not accept Items as Gifts, but will ask they be handed to Delbert or Gandogi who will in turn tender them to Veelu for inspection.
The Crown of Telepathy is of Silver, accented with 16 Emeralds (raw value of 6,300 GP), was created by the Wizard Kolkomec of Tula. It can effectively permit the Transmission of thoughts To the mind of another Being (up to a dis of 50 yards, irregardless of Barriers or Line of Sight).
His Ring of Regeneration (Grants 1d3 pips of Healing @ turn to the Wearer) appears as a plain Gold Band (worth 4 GP in raw material). His Sceptre of Waymaking is a short baton of ornate Ebony-wood bearing small colorful Shells from the beaches of the Silver Skein Isles. Twice Daily it can Throw a Wave of Directional Force (dis 100 yards, STR 33) capable of pushing aside all but the stoutest of Huge Beings (i.e. Giants, Dragons, Mammoths, Cave Trolls, etc.) and can Glow Magical Light, aiding travel in Darkness. It was a gift from the Governor of Altanis; created by the Merfolk, it is Twice as Powerful Underwater.
His Necklace of Magic Missiles appears as a broad Gold Torque accented with Lapis Lazuli (worth 260 GP in raw form), a spoil of having burned out Old Nolennil, the Elf Prince of Wildwood. Each Day it Grants the Wearer to throw up to 4 Directional Magic Missiles (rng 300 yards, doing 1d10+20 pips of Explosive Damage, radius 8 feet, with 90% Accuracy if Sighted).”
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