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Thursday, January 15, 2009

Indomitable Banner

There have been many battles throughout history where the victors should not have won: the field of Perion, the last defense of the 9th Cohort, the fall of Jaburas, and many more. Each of these victories had a common element, the Indomitable Banner flew above the victor's army.

The flag's origins are lost in history. It has been used, lost, forgotten, and discovered many times. It is a silk panel approximately six feet wide and four feet high. A gold-fringed cord binds the flag to a twelve foot black-dyed oak pole. The flag's design is a crimson field marked by three broad gold stripes at top, center, and bottom, the central stripe being one and a half times the width of the top and bottom bands. Five mystic symbols are inscribed in the central stripe, running from the pole side to the center of the flag, each slightly smaller than the previous. The symbols are: Duty, Courage, Fortitude, Honor, Blood. Attempts to identify the magical properties of the item will reveal Epic enhancement and Superb protection magic.

To make use of the Banner's magical effect it must be raised as the primary standard over an army and carried in the vanguard or raised over the primary entrance of a fortification. Once in place it has the following passive effects:
  • All friendly troops within 50 yards of the Banner receive Fair protection from physical harm.
  • Friendly troops that can see the Banner receive a Fair bonus to physical attack skills.
  • The commander of the friendly forces gains the ability to make himself heard by any friendly combatant within sight of the Banner.

The following powers of the Banner can also be invoked by speaking the appropriate word of command. All friendly troops within sight of the Banner are affected. Each power may be invoked once per week. Invoking a power removes the effect of any previous invocation.
  • Duty - Discipline and care become the watchword. All orders and tasks are carried out with diligence and care. Sentries and patrols are alert, gear is well tended, and camp discipline is perfect. A camp prepared while Duty is in effect provides a Fair defensive bonus and a Good bonus versus natural disease or pestilence. This power lasts for one day.
  • Courage - Face fear and conquer. An army under the influence of Courage suffers no desertion and all friendly troops receive a Good bonus to morale. This power lasts for one day.
  • Fortitude - Hardship can be overcome by will. Fortitude allows affected troops to march for a full day and night without food or water. At the end of the march troops are as fresh as if they had received a good meal and a full night's sleep. This benefit affects both men and beasts. Fortitude lasts one day.
  • Honor - Troops fighting under the effect of Honor respect the rules of war, give quarter when it is asked, accept surrender, and avoid harming civilians. They will not turn aside from their duty to loot or pillage. Honor lasts for one day.
  • Blood - Troops fighting under the effect of Blood give no quarter, fighting with unquenchable ferocity and will. They gain a Good bonus to physical attack skills. Troops under this effect will continue to fight so long as there are targets present, slaying foes, civilians, and the defenseless. Blood lasts for one day.
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