Saturday, June 30, 2012

Reblog: The Warforged of Blackmoor

Once mindless troops turned out by the thousands from Blackmoor University’s creation forges, the machines of war took on a new role in the aftermath of the disasters wrought in the wake of the activation of Andahar’s Engine and the Great Rain of Fire.

Originally posted 4 and 5 February, 2011

 Having stolen the secrets of producing artificial life from the Egg of Coot, the generals of the Grand Army of Imperial Blackmoor were most eager to see their automaton soldiers in the field.
The first decade of work nearly ruined the project. Components needed to craft a creation forge were nearly impossible to find, and if found, more often than not were suicidal to actually retrieve. Though the annals indicate thousands of names, they do not record the sacrifices those individuals made for the project. It can be assumed that a great many were the pioneers of warforged research.
Two research labs were lost, and a third severely damaged when their research subjects slipped the bindings placed by the battle-mages. Rather than shut down the research, Imperial Military Command kept the work going.
Another ten years would pass before the first of their “warforged” would walk from the creation forges under its own power. Smarter, more durable than a golem, the Aaji’Sutah were constructs capable of learning, thinking for themselves, and adapting to the chaos of the battlefield without the need for a warmage or battlemancer to constantly issue new orders.
It wasn’t until the third Battle of the Root River in 1745 UC that their susceptibility to demonic interference and possession came to light....

Cold, calculating, brutally efficient: everything the Blackmoor Imperial Army could want in its perfect soldier.
The two companies of warforged massacred the Third Imperial division to a man, and cut a path for the Afridhi to the blood-soaked shores of Lake Hope before the battlemages could erect enough Anti-Magic  barriers to sever the demons’ control of the construct-soldiers.

After the disaster of Third Root, the Imperial Military Command took the Aaji’Sutah out of commission. Their memory crystals were removed, to be stored in one of the many spellguarded vaults deep below Castle Blackmoor.
For another twenty years, the warforged functioned as nothing more than glorified golems, relegated mainly to mining and farming. They would not see battle again until after an unnamed mage accidentally magic jarred himself into the shell of his warforged butler.
The warforged shells were first offered to soldiers too wounded to serve on the field, and many of them eagerly took up the fight once more.
Many soldiers were loathe to return to their “old” bodies when they learned they would have to return the warforged shells at the end of their service. Desertion became more and more common, the soldiers fleeing into the swamps, or sheltering in the many hidden valleys of Booh and the Stormkillers.
While it was a concern of the Blackmoor Imperial Army, the war still raged, and they could not spend time or manpower hunting down the AWOL shells. It was cheaper to simply produce more warforged shells, and to geas the soldiers before issuing them their new bodies.

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