Friday, June 28, 2013

On Witchcraft

Spells, curses, charms, chants, or hexes – all of these are part and parcel of witchcraft as it is known on Morden. Witchcraft is the manipulation of magic to achieve specific goals – and it is the most powerful tool of the Witches that have conquered Morden. However, it is not the Witches alone who can wield witchcraft and channel it into charms or spells. Many banes and some humans can learn to harness the supernatural forces of witchcraft. This magic can accomplish tasks both small and large, from cleansing the dirt out of a hovel to collapsing a mountain pass. There is an astonishing variety of uses for witchcraft, and the use of this magic in itself is neither particularly good nor evil. Those who perform witchcraft as agents of the Witches are known as warlocks, while those who seek to use witchcraft instead for the common good or to aid in the resistance against the Witches’ dark influence are often called “white witches.”

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Mongrels - The Chimera's Witchmark

The Chimera's obsession with transmutation and interconnectedness led to the creation of the Mongrel Witchbreed. Their curse, however, is not entirely manifested by the dark magics that the Witchmark imparted. Rather, it is the Witch's unholy curiosity that represents the heart and soul of the curse. Because of this, the perception of a Mongrel and the reality are two very different things. Few outside of its victims recognize the true essence of this Witchbreed's curse.

Monday, June 24, 2013

The Betrayal

After decades of war with the Witch armies, the Alliance began to realize that there remained little hope for victory. The Outlands, which had first fallen to the invaders, were completely razed. The inhabitants had been transformed into tools of the witches—the Accursed. Large portions of the surviving nations of Morden had already fallen to the banes and the Witchmarked. It seemed it would only be a matter of time before all would crumble.

Friday, June 21, 2013

The Outlands

The tale of the Outlands is a tragic one. Once, the Outlands were the most wild, the most vibrant, the most untamed and open lands in all of Morden. Settled over 700 years before the Witches and their armies crossed the Darkwall, the Outlands were originally a home for pioneers, adventurers, and farsighted merchants. The Outlands were verdant, rich in flora and fauna, and they were only limited in their development by the growing wealth and influence of the more southern realms such as Hyphrates and Manreia.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

In a Hut on Bird Legs - Baba Yaga

She comes in a clamor – clap of thunder, flash of lightning, howling wind – and all peace is at an end. Stepping forth from another world on spindly bird's legs, a house appears in the tumult at the edge of a great forest. Animals flee, flowers wilt, grass blackens, trees lean away as if to escape, even the land itself groans and shudders. The house settles, tucking its legs beneath it. It's a shabby, run-down, moss covered hovel of stone and sod with blank, leering windows and a rotten door half ajar. Dirt clotted bones of long-dead men and animals rise from the ground to form a ghastly fence about the house, with a gate thrown wide in welcome. Baba Yaga has come to her people once again.

Monday, June 17, 2013


Citizens of Manreia believe that their nation is the cultural, technological, and religious center of Morden. They have the greatest poets, artists, and composers. Aureliano de Acosta's academy and workshop produce endless marvels. The Conclave of Enochian Bishops meets at St. Stephen's Basilica in Manreia's capital city of Palmyria. The citizens also argue that the land's mild year-round climate is a sign of God's favor upon them. Their fields are fertile, their mines are rich, and the sea provides a generous bounty. Manreia's citizens believe that they are the most fortunate and the most accomplished in the world.

Friday, June 14, 2013

The Dhampir

Of the known Accursed witchbreeds, the Dhampir are amongst the most normal in appearance. At first glance, a Dhampir may appear completely human, and only a glimpse of her fangs or the crimson glint in her eyes may reveal her true nature.

The origin of the Dhampir lies with blood—it is the essence of their power and their curse.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

On Witchmarks

A prisoner's stripes, the Mark of Cain, the Scarlet Letter, the "B" burned into a blasphemer's forehead – every sinner is marked by their sin. Some are carried within, hidden from view but seared on the soul, while others are very visible indeed. In word, deed, and appearance, those who are so marked are altered, twisted in some way that makes it clear to all who see them that they have transgressed and, in theory, have atoned for their sins. In the land of Morden, perhaps the most visible mark is the Witchmark. In today's installment, I'll be talking about Witchmarks, their meaning, and how they affect the Accursed and the world around them.

Monday, June 10, 2013

The Order of the Penitent

After the majority of the witches' forces retreated beyond the mountains, they abandoned many of their tools. The armies that they used to conquer Morden were not needed to secure it. Their banes were adequate to keep the people and nations firmly under their control. The witches released the humans that they had inducted into their service, so that these soldiers could once more care for the land, providing their taxes and homage to their conquerors.

Friday, June 7, 2013

Accursed: A Savage Worlds RPG Setting by Ross Watson, John Dunn, and Jason Marker

This tale begins with  a world of dark fantasy and perilous adventure, where the forces of evil have triumphed.

In such a world, those who remain uncorrupted by wickedness must rely upon monsters to fight against the darkness. Witches have ruled the land since the last battles of conquest, but their Grand Coven has been sundered, leaving behind remnants of a once-mighty army. The remnants of the horde include captured citizens of the conquered nations that fought as the Witches’ shock troops.

These are the Accursed—the Witchmarks burned into their flesh and souls transformed these men and women into monstrous forms. Now, unable to return to their former lives, the Accursed   wander the land, giving aid to those in need in an attempt to atone for past sins. Some have joined the Order of the Penitent, an organization devoted to ridding the world of the Witches and their evil influence. Others offer their skills as warriors, alchemists, and spies to the highest bidder. Yet others have succumbed to corruption, greed, or insanity.

Light has failed, darkness is ascendant—only those bearing the forms of monsters can stand against the tide of the Witches’ evil. The Accursed are this world’s only hope—they must learn to embrace their curse or to fight against it, and find some way to free themselves forever of their Witchmark.

This is the world of Accursed.