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Author Topic: Recruiting Norse Mercenaries  (Read 292 times)

SHARK

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Recruiting Norse Mercenaries
« on: November 18, 2020, 07:31:59 pm »
Greetings!

Well, one of my groups is in a position to begin recruiting some mercenaries for upcoming expeditions. I checked in the Monster Manual Appendix, and quickly wrote this up to begin with.

What other kinds of mercenary troops might the party be able to recruit? How do these here look to start with?

As the group made various speeches during a recent feast, and circulated amongst the longhouses and seaside campfires seeking support, I played this track to them.



Danevar Veteran
Armour Class: 16 Chainmail Hauberk only; 18 with Heavy Shield
Hit Points: 58 (9d8+18)
Speed: 30 ft.
Str 16 (+3) Dex 13 (+1) Con 14 (+2) Int 10 (+0) Wis 11 (+0) Cha 10 (+0)
Skills: Athletics +5 Perception +2
Senses: Passive Perception 12
Languages: any one language; Common Danevar
Multiattack: The veteran makes two longsword attacks. If the veteran has a shortsword or a handaxe drawn, the veteran can also make a shortsword or handaxe attack.

Nambar Longsword: Melee Weapon Attack; +5 to Hit, reach 5 ft. One target. Hit: 7 (1d8+3) slashing damage. If the veteran wields the longsword with two hands, the veteran inflicts 8 (1d10+3) slashing damage per attack. The Nambar style of longsword is a straight, double-edged weapon three to four feet long, with a tapered point. Nambar style longswords have long handles, allowing the sword to be wielded with two hands in combat.

Seax Shortsword, "Broken Back": Melee Weapon Attack; +5 to Hit, reach 5 ft. One target. Hit: 6 (1d6+3) piercing damage. The “Broken Back” Seax Shortsword is a singled-edged weapon that features a long-angled tip towards the last one third length of the blade, which angles downwards from the weapon’s spine, ending in a sharp point. The Seax Shortsword is customarily worn in a horizontal scabbard across the waist or chest, with the blade-side upwards in the scabbard.

Bearded Handaxe: Melee or Ranged Weapon Attack: +5 to hit, reach 5 ft or range 20/60 ft. One target. Hit 6 (1d6+3) piercing damage. +1 Bonus to Initiative. The Bearded Handaxe is a finely-crafted weapon with a single-edged blade which has an extended blade-edge that sweeps downwards. The obverse side of the axe-head is smooth. The Bearded Handaxe is designed for war, and can be used in hand-to-hand fighting or thrown. The Bearded Handaxe is well-balanced, with a graceful handle, and crafted to be a highly agile and swift striking weapon.

Spear: Melee or Ranged Weapon Attack: +5 to hit, reach 5 ft or range 20/60 ft. one target. Hit 6 (1d6+3) piercing damage, or 7 (1d8+3) piercing damage if used with two hands to make a melee attack. Veterans that are equipped with a spear may choose to use their spear in hand-to-hand combat, making two melee attacks with their spear.

Shortbow: Ranged Weapon Attack; +3 to Hit, range 80/320 ft. One target. Hit: 3 (1d6) piercing damage. Veterans carry a leather shoulder-quiver which holds 20 arrows.

Danevar Warriors

Danevar veterans are seasoned, professional warriors that customarily fight for pay and booty, but also for causes that they believe in. The Danevar veterans presented here are successful and experienced warriors, well-armoured and well-equipped. The Danevar veterans have Nambar Helms, which are conical, iron helms with nasal guards—with some having cheek-guards or eye-masks; Chainmail Hauberk armour, and Nambar Shields. Nambar Shields are large, heavy round shields fashioned of wood, covered with rawhide, and feature an iron rim around the edges, a central iron embossment, and are typically brightly painted. The Danevar veterans are heavily armed, especially for close hand-to-hand combat, but also with effective ranged weapons. In addition to being well armed with numerous, high-quality weapons, the Danevar veterans are also equipped with leather explorer’s backpacks, four weeks of rations, fishing nets, 12 extra torches and 12 extra pint flasks of oil. Each Danevar veteran also has an extra 1-gallon waterskin full of amber ale. The Danevar warriors have a heavy cloak, thick tunic, long-sleeved woolen shirt, trousers, rawhide gloves, and a pair of stout leather boots. Each Danevar warrior has 1 jewelry item or finely-crafted trinket, valued at 1d6x10gp, (Average value of 30gp)—and a leather shoulder pouch containing 6d6sp. (Average 20sp).

The Danevar men generally have long hair, to their shoulders or longer, and full, neatly trimmed beards. Roughly 50% of the Danevar warriors decorate their bodies with colourful tattoos which possess some kind of tribal, spiritual, or personal symbolism. Approximately 25% of the Danevar warriors have some kind of dramatic or crazy-looking hair style, often featuring partially shaved heads, weirdly braided hair, strange, bright colors, or some other unusual feature. All are tall, strong and athletic, with a stern and fierce demeanor.

I appreciate your thoughts!

Semper Fidelis,

SHARK
"It is the Marine Corps that will strip away the façade so easily confused with self. It is the Corps that will offer the pain needed to buy the truth. And at last, each will own the privilege of looking inside himself  to discover what truly resides there. Comfort is an illusion. A false security bred from familiar things and familiar ways. It narrows the mind. Weakens the body. And robs the soul of spirit and determination. Comfort is neither welcome nor tolerated here."

"Courage is not the absence of fear, but is doing what you have to, in spite of the fear."
"Let Death and Fire Be Their Portion!"
"Delenda Est Parthia!"

anglebrill

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Re: Recruiting Norse Mercenaries
« Reply #1 on: November 22, 2020, 09:12:00 am »
I used a half-elf Drow Warlock and messed with the attributes. I took Eldritch Blast and Chill Touch for spells and then just equipped the first 2-hander I found. He doesn't have proficiency for the sword, but it fits the character and I still have killed a number of enemies with it.







192.168.100.1 192.168.1.1 jpg to pdf

Ghostmaker

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Re: Recruiting Norse Mercenaries
« Reply #2 on: November 23, 2020, 10:59:20 am »
I used a half-elf Drow Warlock and messed with the attributes. I took Eldritch Blast and Chill Touch for spells and then just equipped the first 2-hander I found. He doesn't have proficiency for the sword, but it fits the character and I still have killed a number of enemies with it.

I think you're a bot. Let's see if Pundit agrees.

Greentongue

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Re: Recruiting Norse Mercenaries
« Reply #3 on: November 23, 2020, 02:26:37 pm »
When recruiting Norse Mercenaries are you looking for the ones that are in it for the loot or the sheer adventure?

If I recall, the primary goal of "Going Viking" was to trade? Looting easy targets was when trading wasn't an option?

Eirikrautha

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Re: Recruiting Norse Mercenaries
« Reply #4 on: November 23, 2020, 03:35:49 pm »
When recruiting Norse Mercenaries are you looking for the ones that are in it for the loot or the sheer adventure?

If I recall, the primary goal of "Going Viking" was to trade? Looting easy targets was when trading wasn't an option?
Negative.  The Old Norse word "vikingr" means "raider" (technically "one who frequents inlets or bays".  It has been years since I studied Old Icelandic, but that's the general idiomatic meaning) .  The idea that vikings were peaceful traders who occasionally raided when they had no other options is a Disneyfied fiction put forth by the same sort of morons who would also frown upon the vikings' toxic masculinity.  Sure, if you were tough enough that the vikings felt like it would be more dangerous than profitable to attack, they might trade instead.  But they weren't sailing out looking for trade.  They were looking to take your stuff, and maybe trade it to someone more powerful.

SHARK

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Re: Recruiting Norse Mercenaries
« Reply #5 on: November 23, 2020, 06:49:42 pm »
When recruiting Norse Mercenaries are you looking for the ones that are in it for the loot or the sheer adventure?

If I recall, the primary goal of "Going Viking" was to trade? Looting easy targets was when trading wasn't an option?
Negative.  The Old Norse word "vikingr" means "raider" (technically "one who frequents inlets or bays".  It has been years since I studied Old Icelandic, but that's the general idiomatic meaning) .  The idea that vikings were peaceful traders who occasionally raided when they had no other options is a Disneyfied fiction put forth by the same sort of morons who would also frown upon the vikings' toxic masculinity.  Sure, if you were tough enough that the vikings felt like it would be more dangerous than profitable to attack, they might trade instead.  But they weren't sailing out looking for trade.  They were looking to take your stuff, and maybe trade it to someone more powerful.

Greetings!

Yeah, the scholars that claim that the Vikings were really just "peaceful traders" and not ruthless marauders has become popular in many circles in recent years. I consider it more SJW-like revisionist BS in the same vein of those phony scholars that have maintained that the barbarian invasions of Rome were not violent, savage invasions--no, no, they were really more "peaceful migrations".

It's more historical revisionist BS. I especially despise the flaccid scholarship that seeks to make such over-arching arguments, and which seek to disregard or minimize centuries of excellent scholarship that has highlighted real truth.

"Nuanced" statements though don't sell textbooks or gain committee memberships within the halls of academia. Yes, some barbarian tribes sought to migrate into the Roman Empire peacefully, and some even allied with the Romans. Nonetheless, most of the barbarian hordes invaded. They came to rape, conquer, and plunder. Just like with the Vikings. We know that the Vikings traded extensively, and were keenly interested in developing and cultivating trade centers, market towns, and trade routes. That fact doesn't change the fact that most Vikings that set sail throughout Europe--from Ireland and Britain in the west, to the Baltic, Finland, and Russia in the east--in addition to their own internal wars and raiding within Denmark, Norway and Sweden--promoted such expeditions for the purposes of raiding, plunder, slavery, and ultimately conquest.

Semper Fidelis,

SHARK
"It is the Marine Corps that will strip away the façade so easily confused with self. It is the Corps that will offer the pain needed to buy the truth. And at last, each will own the privilege of looking inside himself  to discover what truly resides there. Comfort is an illusion. A false security bred from familiar things and familiar ways. It narrows the mind. Weakens the body. And robs the soul of spirit and determination. Comfort is neither welcome nor tolerated here."

"Courage is not the absence of fear, but is doing what you have to, in spite of the fear."
"Let Death and Fire Be Their Portion!"
"Delenda Est Parthia!"

Spinachcat

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Re: Recruiting Norse Mercenaries
« Reply #6 on: November 23, 2020, 07:23:59 pm »
I studied under Dr. Jesse Byock at UCLA, and back in the day he was considered one of the pre-eminent Norse scholars. His take on the "traders vs. raiders" was the Norse were cunning and flexible. They weren't orcs. They were intensely curious and that drove their travels, their raids and their trade. Yes, they glorified dying in battle, but Odin was a trickster god (like Loki) and Norse fables glorified cunning heroes as much as brave ones. So yes, the Vikings who came to town to trade were also judging the town's value and defenses for next summer's raids.

THIS is Vikings & Valkyries, an OSR-ish Norse RPG that's FREE
http://mazesandminotaurs.free.fr/VIK.pdf

Here's a review
http://www.trollishdelver.com/2011/12/vikings-valkyries-reviews.html

SHARK

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Re: Recruiting Norse Mercenaries
« Reply #7 on: November 23, 2020, 07:29:57 pm »
I studied under Dr. Jesse Byock at UCLA, and back in the day he was considered one of the pre-eminent Norse scholars. His take on the "traders vs. raiders" was the Norse were cunning and flexible. They weren't orcs. They were intensely curious and that drove their travels, their raids and their trade. Yes, they glorified dying in battle, but Odin was a trickster god (like Loki) and Norse fables glorified cunning heroes as much as brave ones. So yes, the Vikings who came to town to trade were also judging the town's value and defenses for next summer's raids.

THIS is Vikings & Valkyries, an OSR-ish Norse RPG that's FREE
http://mazesandminotaurs.free.fr/VIK.pdf

Here's a review
http://www.trollishdelver.com/2011/12/vikings-valkyries-reviews.html

Greetings!

*Laughing* Ahh, you know that's right, my friend! ;D

Semper Fidelis,

SHARK
"It is the Marine Corps that will strip away the façade so easily confused with self. It is the Corps that will offer the pain needed to buy the truth. And at last, each will own the privilege of looking inside himself  to discover what truly resides there. Comfort is an illusion. A false security bred from familiar things and familiar ways. It narrows the mind. Weakens the body. And robs the soul of spirit and determination. Comfort is neither welcome nor tolerated here."

"Courage is not the absence of fear, but is doing what you have to, in spite of the fear."
"Let Death and Fire Be Their Portion!"
"Delenda Est Parthia!"