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ADNES1: The Rood, The Roll and the Dragon

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Oct 16, 2021
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ADNES1: The Rood, The Roll and the Dragon

Welcome, one and all, to ADNES1: The Rood, The Roll and the Dragon. Inspired by a combination of Thorvald of Lym's Roll II Rule seen in Forum Games, and The Rood and the Dragon by Plotinus.

ADNES1 smushes these together and drops them into the NESing Sphere.

The Setting

The year is AD 480. Nearly seventy years have passed since the Roman legions were withdrawn from Britannia. The island, rich and unprotected, has been invaded by wave upon wave of barbarians from northern Europe - Angles, Saxons, Jutes, Danes. They have conquered or assimilated the Romano-British peoples of the south and east of Britannia. A new era dawns.

As the warlord of one of the new Kingdoms, you must struggle for supremacy with your fellow invaders. Each lord is desperate to carve out an empire in the new lands. There will be battles and wars ahead the like of which this island has never seen before - but there will be glory and honour. For a warrior wins renown in battle, and through conquest comes prosperity and the establishment of a lasting culture. Each warlord dreams of being pronounced Bretwalda - the overking of all of Britannia. But few will achieve it.

The land of Britannia is rich, flowing with many rivers, covered in game-rich forests. But land is scarce, and there is competition. To the north is the land of the Picts, a powerful, warlike people, able to mobilise great forces from their highland retreats. To the west are the remaining Romano-British kingdoms - old, secure, but their age is waning, and a new age is coming.

And greater powers stir beyond the seas. In the far west is the land of Ireland, an ancient culture, never conquered by the Romans. There still flickers the flame of antiquity and the learning of the ancients. Ireland could yet extend its cultural sway over the whole of Britannia. From Ireland, and from the European continent to the south, rumours reach you of a new religion - the Christian faith. At some point you will have to contend with missionaries who will seek to convert you and your kingdom. Christianity offers cultural and educational prizes beyond imagination. Will you raise the sign of the Rood - the Cross - throughout your lands, or would you do better to keep to the faith of your forefathers, and honour the pagan gods through battle and glory?

And to the east, rumours grow of another power - a mighty people who sail over the ocean in dragon-prowed ships, wielding great axes, seeking plunder and spoils. Build your kingdom quickly and root it in strength - for the Vikings will surely put it to the greatest test.

Your people have invested you with power and honour. Will you repay them in kind? Will you rise to the challenge? Will you win glory on the battlefield and blessings from On High? Will you seize the title of Bretwalda - or will you die in the attempt?

Spoiler The Map :

The base rules are so simple, even Byzieboos can understand:

1. Post an action.
2. Your result will be determined by the roll of a die.
3. Any attacking action immediately grants a (modified) free defence roll.​

Initial success is determined on a score of 1–20, with the final result adjusted by Various Acquired Modifiers (VAM). Score breakdown is as follows:

1 : Unbelievably total failure. Action WILL backfire.
2-4 : Failure, with penalty
5-7 : Marginal failure with possible penalty
8-10 : Failure, no penalty
11-13 : Straightforward success
14-16 : Success, with possible bonus
17-19 : Success, with circumstantial bonus
20 : MAXIMUM POWER. Guaranteed success, with added bonus.​

Under binary conditions, 1-10 fails, 11-20 succeeds.

Note that attempting an action requiring an intermediate action (i.e. Attacking a nation with no army) automatically fails. Also note that the same action cannot be taken twice in a row. Take heed that The Rule of Funtm is in effect, and your actions may not go as expected.

"So what's different from Thorvald's game?"

Good question! Whereas previous R2D spin-offs play very freeflow, ADNES1 remains at its heart a NES. You are working within the loosely held constaints of a historically realistic setting. Your nation has STATS. There won't be tanks or nukes in ADNES. Stories matter, managing your nation effectively matters. Diplomacy and planning matters. Above I mentioned about VAM. These will be very key in this game. Success or Failure will be compounding, with subsequent rolls being modified by what has come before it.

"I'm here from the Old Days. What's different from how we played then?"

Nothing really, except now we have fewer players! :cool:

"Oh come on, it can't be that simple!

No, really!

"Are there really no other rules?"

Alright, you got me. Here are some further considerations:
  • All orders must be publicly posted in this thread. Format it however you want; just make sure I know what you're trying to do.
  • All players begin with one action per turn. You can, however, expand your actionability through VAM.
  • Talking is a free action. Diplomacy isn't. Inter-player negotiations can occur anywhere and any time, but actually enacting the treaty requires you to roll for it to take effect on your side. You can only enact one change of diplomacy a turn unless VAM change this.
"Ok, Just tell me about "VAM"

This is how the development and evolution of your nation will be tracked. If you take one turn for example.. "building a barracks" This (if successful) will give a permanent benefit for example..

"+2 to all rolls when training units"

Example Nation Stats:

Meadh : Aiken_Drumn
Leadership: Fráech mac Finchada
Strength: 20/20
Capital: Dublin
Religion: Christian
Colour: Red
Description: East coast Irish nation
Diplomacy: Alliance with France
VAM: +5 to Longbow attacks

Nation Name : Player Name
Leadership: IC Name
Strength: Current "Hit Points"/ Maximum "Hit Points"
Capital: Nations seat of power
Religion: There are few religions in this game, don't expect much diplomatic luck from rival faiths!
Colour: Representation on the map
Description: Brief description of the nation
Diplomacy: Any Diplomatic status in play
VAM: Any modifiers to dice rolls acquired.

"Cosmetic" actions (Naming units, detailing formation composition, changing the national flag Etc.) can be done without a roll, and might even improve it!

By liking this post, you have implicitly agreed to the terms of service, including that clause stating they my be changed arbitrarily at any time.

How do I join?

Welcome aboard! Either pick your country from the stat list or pick a grey province on the map and create a new one.

...Actually, let me clarify something to make sure there's no confusion.

Adding Detail to your national bio counts as your first action.

CFCers are all helpless egotists at heart, so describe your country in as much or as little detail as you wish. Your first update will determine how much your dream matches reality in terms of control over your territory, standing military et cetera, etc. Remember we are within a historical setting, but you have freedom to play within that structure. The more effort you put in here the better, but it is entirely up to you. You can change your leader/capital/colour etc at this point.

Lastly: Have Fun!

Anyone not having fun may be evicted without notice.
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Nation Stats:

Laighn : @erez87
Strength: 20/25
Leadership: Illan mac Dúnlainge
Capital: Kilkenny
Religion: Christian
Colour: Blue
Description: South east Irish nation
Diplomacy: Mumha +1
VAM: Feared by the local populace, Popular Heir

Dumnonia: @Danwar
Strength: 20/20
Leadership: Ambrosius Aurelianus
Capital: Aquae Sulis
Religion: Christian
Colour: Sand
Description: South West Roman Embers
Diplomacy: None
VAM: Favor of commoners, [+2 to Infrastructure rolls for the next 3 turns]

Uladh: Kyzarc Fotjage
Strength: 27/30
Leadership: Eochaid mac Muiredaig Muinderg
Capital: Ráth Celtchair
Religion: Pagan with flickers of Christianity
Colour: Green
Diplomacy: Meadh +1

Meadh: @Terrance888
Strength: 25/25
Leadership: Failge Berraide
Capital: Uisneach
Religion: Strong Pagan
Colour: Red
Diplomacy: Uladh +1
VAM: The Oathsworn (+2 to military rolls), Fortress of Uisneach (-2 to rolls attacking Uisneach)

Dunluce : @Birdjaguar
Strength: 20/20
Leadership: Fionn mac Cumhaill (Finn MacCool)
Capital: Ballykeel
Religion: Pagan
Colour: Dark Blue
Description: North East coast Irish nation
Diplomacy: +1 When acting with Dal Ariad, +1 When acting with Tyr Connail
VAM: Sive is heavily pregnant, Barracks and training facilities built

Mumha: @Angst
Strength: 20/20
Leadership: Dauí Iarlaithe mac Maithni
Capital: Corcaigh
Religion: Weakly Pagan
Colour: Purple
Diplomacy: Laighn +1
VAM: +1 rolls relating to Ships & trade, -1 to rolls when interacting with a nation with Strong Religion

Tyr Connail: Lord of Elves
Strength: 24/26
Leadership: llan mac Fráech
Capital: Sligo
Religion: Christian
Colour: Burgundy
Description: North west Irish nation.
Diplomacy: None
VAM: Great Barracks of Sligo(+5 to all Military Rolls) Large Army, +1 When acting with Dunluce

Dal Ariadi: Eltain
Strength: 20/20
Leadership: Dúnlainge mac Finchada
Capital: Doire
Religion: Christian
Colour: Yellow
Description: Northern Irish nation
VAM: Shipyard of Doire (+2 to all Ship related rolls) Fully Stocked Stores, -1 to enemy attacks against fortified border
Diplomacy: +1 When acting with Dunluce

Connachta : @Gelion
Strength: 20/20
Leadership: Dauí Tenga Uma mac Briúin
Capital: Sligo
Religion: Christian
Colour: Orange
Diplomacy: Ravenna +1
VAM: Greek monk hermitage in residence

Kernow : christos200
Leadership: Marcus Martinus
Strength: 20/20
Capital: Tregear
Religion: Christianity
Colour: Greyish Blue
Diplomacy: None
VAM: None
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The Lay of Meadh

Turn 1 - A Promise of Renewal

Uisneach, the sacred center of Ireland and Irish Paganism. On May Day, the druids assembled to perform festivals and to breathe life to ancient laws by reading them to those that gathered and to the buried Tuatha De Danaan, the ancient powers of the land.

To help defend this sacred site, the King of Meadh, or the Middle, is acclaimed to he who can preserve stability and piece of the land. Although many clans struggled to acclaim this title, for many decades an unnamed king held it in his grasp. Although vigorous in his youth, time has taken his sons and his sanity, and left him with his throne. While his grandchildren multiplied and squabbled, this king tightened his grip as his eyesight failed, until the king only held sway into the lands nearest to the sacred mount, and his kingdom dissolved. Meanwhile, many saw this as omens brought by the Christian God, and the Rood rose in many of the lands of Ireland.

However, one of the grandsons or great grandsons, Failge Berraide, foresaw a future where the blessings of the gods once more flowed freely. Originally raised among a small farm, he learned of his heritage and birthright by a traveling vates and left with his mother's blessing. Traveling the land, besting rivals and gaining supporters, he positioned himself to claim the throne once his ancient sire passed. A learned man, he knew he must be acclaimed in the ancient ways, to truly become the King of Meadh and lead it to new glory.

And so, he immediately put to work to reestablish stability and to reinvite the remaining Druids of Ireland to acclaim his ancient rights.

Turn 2 - Oaths of Blood and Brotherhood

With the blessing of the Druids, Failge Berraide set forth on his next project - uniting the disparate blood of the Ancient King, many of whom like him foreswore that unwelcome clan. And so he toured the countryside, visiting the greatest holdings and tuathas, or kingdoms, swaying their chiefs. When he returned he summoned forth from each a promising warrior, to represent them and the bond between Tuatha and the Kingdom Of Meadh. And from these warriors, he requested oaths of loyalty and protection. In exchange he swears to guarantee them their birthrights, be it inheritance or mastery of new tuathas to be conquered. From these warriors he would mold together the spearpoint of his new army, his new personal body guard, his Oathsworn.

Action - Gather the most promising warriors of the land and have them swear oaths of loyalty, thereby becoming the Oathsworn, King Failge Berraide's new personal bodyguard and elite warriors.

Turn 3 - A Promise of Prosperity

Action: For too long the Realm has Rotted. Undergo a program of reconstruction and restoration, so that every man in Meadh can say that King Failge Berraide improved their lot, and every God in the Eire can say that King Failge Berraide has restored the prosperity of Meadh.

Turn 4 - Champion of the Druids

Action: Invite the local Druids to Uisneach and ask to relocate their groves to Uisneach permanently. By reading the laws in the halls of Uisneach, we will centralize both our religion and our administration.

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So are we starting over with a new turn 1?
I think @Terrance888 is just reposting his orders for clarity.
Fág an Bealach, we march west.
Birdjaguar said:
Dunluce 1
Birdjaguar said:
Leadership: Fionn mac Cumhaill (Finn MacCool)
Capital: Ballykeel
Religion: Pagan
Colour: Dark Bule
Description: North East coast Irish nation

Finn MacCool and his wife Sive (Sadhbh) retired to their hall in Balleykeel and left the cheering crowds in the yard. They had just returned from Dunluce where Finn had left a strong guard to oversee and hold tight to the Clochán na bhFomhóraigh, the stepping stones of the gods. The power of the pagan gods had not waned in Dunluce as it had elsewhere and the old ways were strong in magic that filled his people with power of their land and the fortitude in battle inspired by the ancient Formorians. The harvests that year had been rich and the granaries of Dunluce were full. The spring birthings among the herds had been bountiful and in the fair summer they had grown fat. He was at peace with his neighbors but wary for they were all around. The power of the god flowed through him and his wife; it filled the woods and streams and lakes and fed his people who loved him. His ships sailed to Pictish lands across the water. The folks to the west in Dal Ariadl were less prosperous and eager to partake of Finn's generosity and willingness to trade.

In the quiet of their chambers Finn and Sive talked of the gods blessing and how they might spread those blessing far and wide and that one day his namesake would once again stride the great causeway to further their efforts.

Dunluce: The rash warrior spirit of conquest of the Uladh has been noted and watch fires set upon the hilltops; shields have been mended and swords sharpened.

Dunluce to Ulaidh: Cu Chulainn and Emer are dead and gone as is Conchobar mac Nessa. Their kingly hill now naught but cow pasture and barley fields. You seek to revive an ancient treasure long pillaged and scattered among all the people of our fair green land. You would seek claims long dead and rotten upon the earth. Tread carefully lest those around you see your quest for glory for what it is: a grab for power. The good folks of Navan may not take lightly to your puppet grandeur.

Dunluce: 2

Rulers: Finn MacCool and wife Sive
Councilors: Taig, son of Ciann and Conall Gulban
Warchiefs: Niall Noigiallach and Cormac Cas
Merchant friend: Tir Eoghain
Recorder: Fergus
Capital: Balleykeel

Recent Official records of Finn McCool as written by his court recorder Fergus

The Harbormaster reported that increased traffic into Dunluce harbors has overwhelmed facilities and improvements are needed to docks, warehouses, bridges, in-town roads, quay cranes and small boats to ferry goods to and from ships. Finn authorized such work to be undertaken as soon as weather permits. Additional tax collectors were assigned to busiest the ports and border crossings.

Niall and Cormac reported the lords of Ulaidh were moving troops west as if going to war. Confidants (spies) provided troop counts and other vital information about those efforts. Niall also noted that he put all our local kinsmen on alert. Discontent in Navan over the feared invasion will be watched.

Our emissaries in Dal Ariadi told of success with the tribal lords who were receptive to increased cooperation in dispute resolution. Pictish envoys are expected to arrive in coming weeks to participate in the ceremonies along The Giant’s Causeway and Balleykeel.

Sive “let slip” that perhaps the roundness of her belly was not because of the abundance of the harvests.
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Mumha: Angst

Strength: 20/20
Leadership: Dauí Iarlaithe mac Maithni
Capital: Corcaigh
Religion: Weakly Pagan
Colour: Purple
Diplomacy: None
VAM: +1 rolls relating to Ships & trade, -1 to rolls when interacting with a nation with Strong Religion

Description: The Degaidh settled Mumha shortly before this time in history, establishing villages and engaging in trade with the local Dergthini and Lugaidh. Mumha is a patchwork of these three tribes, owing much of their prosperity to an origin of travels, often exchanging goods between southwestern Eire and the people of Cymru across the bay to the east. This trade makes the kingdom proficient in shipbuilding and they make capable sailors along the eastern and western coasts of Eire. The mixed heritage also makes it a haven for people tired of the trifles between Christians and Pagans, as while being a largely Pagan nation, Mumha's naval connections often force them into true connections with people of vast differences. The naval connections naturally have also connected them to the Romans of old. Whether they are in a transitionary period towards Christianity or being a Pagan nation of tolerance, they are a multifaceted people. While mac Maithni rule the land, the court is largely divided in council across tribes, and emnities are usually cast away by intermarrying the different clans, meaning that most of Mumha's royalty is familially interconnected, and largely plutocratic above anything else. However, the diversity also means people of more scrupulous and xenophobic nature are rarely culled; while rich and with little trouble in their multiplicity, they may not present the same armies as a nation unified in tribe and faith.


Nothing is better than coins in the pocket. Maybe bread for the hungry, but coins buy bread.

During council assembly, Muichertach mac Degaidh proposes expansion of clan trade along the coasts. After some debate, getting closer trade to centralized Laighn and the distant land of Cymru should provide the best opportunity for profit. Iarlaithe mac Maithni arranges the establishment through a formal vote in the council and approved by the king. Merchants in the near future establishing markets there are given an upfront investment by the government and a short term tax relief, in return they are expected to pay back debt in the near future.


- Establish trading post(s) in the province to the east.
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