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[Pendragon] The Selonia Campaign

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Concept

The Selonia campaign uses the Pendragon system. The most important change is the date

of the campaign, which will be in 1197 AD. Thanks to the many anachronisms in the origi-

nal Pendragon setting and the focus on the island Selonia this actually requires very few

changes to the Pendragon system. The main difference is in the names, Arthur and his fol-

lowers are replaced by the historical personalities of the 12th century.

The first part of the campaign is structured, with a clear timeline and many fixed events in

the background. After the campaign's second phase the campaign will become more of a

sandbox campaign, the player characters now have a common history and also should ha-

ve „learned the ropes“ and developed some ideas about their future plans and goals.

Prologue

The campaign starts in England, in the County of Derby. Earl William of Derby is married

to an Occitanian noble, Marie de Plancy, the half sister of the adventurer Robert de Plancy.

Robert asked Countess Marie for her support for his attempt to conquer Selonia from the

Moors, Countess Marie asked Earl William, and Earl William grudgingly agreed to support

Robert's expedition. He decided to send a little money and less troops, led by his nephew

Sir Athelstane of Clivesden. Since Sir Athelstane needs a few more knights to accompany

him and the Earl is unwilling to send his household knights on such an adventure, he will

hastily knight a couple of squires, outfit them and ask them to serve Sir Athelstane for the

duration of the expedition and a year and a day.

Sir Athelstane and the new knights, the player characters, will lead a small unit of the Earl's

men-at-arms from Derby to Perpinya in southern France, where Robert de Plancy assemb-

les his expedition to Selonia, which will set sails in 1200 AD.

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Location

Selonia is a fictional volcanic island off the North African coast, it replaces our real world's

Canary Islands. The island was originally settled by Berbers from North Africa and was la-

ter discovered and ruled by the Phoenicians, the Romans, the Vandals and the Moors. How-

ever, all of these foreign overlords only established military outposts and taxed the natives,

they did not otherwise influence the native culture much.

Selonia has a population of approximately 9,000 Selonese and 1,500 Moors and small Je-

wish community with about 100 members. There are currently three major settlements on

Selonia, the walled Moorish capital Medina Selonia and the two small market towns Adiba

and Taguit. Most of the Selonese live in small hamlets and villages along the coast of the

island.

Phase One – War

Robert de Plancy's force will land on Selonia while the island's ruler, Sheikh Aban, is on a

campaign in Mauretania and the island is defended only by his young wife, Sheikhya Jinan,

and the small Moorish garrison of Medina Selonia. A battle on the coast will be followed by

the siege of Medina Selonia, where Sheikhya Jinan will soon be forced to surrender to the

infidels.

Robert de Plancy and his followers will use the next year to explore the island, prevent a re-

bellion of the natives and establish an administration, with Robert as the Prince of Selonia,

his friend Sir Isarn de Feraux as his steward in Adiba and Sir Athelstane of Clivesden as his

steward in Taguit.

At the end of the year the player characters will have fulfilled their promise to serve Sir Athel-

stane and are now free to either become his household knights, to look for another liege, or

to try to make their fortune in any other way that suits them.

Anyway, the war is not yet over, because in the spring of the following year Sheikh Aban at-

tempts to reconquer his realm. Again the infidels will win, they will kill Sheikh Aban and de-

feat his army, but this victory will come at a price, because Robert de Plancy will also be kil-

led in the battle.

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Phase Two – Courtly Intrigue

With the death of Robert de Plancy the new rulers of Selonia lost their acknowledged leader.

Robert, the legitimized bastard son of a French count, was married by his father to the heir-

ess of the County of Plancy in the Rosello region of France, and Robert has a young widow

named Agnes and a newborn son named Reynaud there. It was his wife's inheritance which

made the conquest of Selonia possible, and most of the income of the County of Plancy is

used to support the new overlords of Selonia.

While Reynaud de Plancy is the legal heir of Robert, and Agnes de Plancy the most likely re-

gent for her son, not all of Robert's followers are willing to hand their power over to them. Sir

Athelstane sees himself as the best possible ruler of Selonia, Sir Isarn's loyalty to the young

heir is also in doubt, and the remaining Moorish nobles and the Selonese have their own dif-

ferent ideas about the future of the island.

The situation comes to a point when Agnes de Plancy leaves the stewardship of the County of

Plancy to her brother Raymond and arrives on Selonia with her son Reynaud. The outcome

of the power struggle will be determined by the player characters, they will have to choose a

side - or become their own side – and their choice and their actions will decide who will rule

Selonia.

Phase Three – Nation Building

Unless Phase Two ends in a desaster, Selonia will have to be governed, and the player charac-

ters will almost certainly be among the young nation's landed leaders.

Conquering a realm is much easier than ruling it. Some kind of administration has to be crea-

ted, the island's economy has to be rebuilt, diplomatic relations and trade routes have to be es-

tablished, and so on and on.

What exactly the player characters will be up to is decided by the players in this sandbox pha-

se, although I will of course continue to provide the important events of a background history.

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The main difference between my previous pseudo-historical settings and this one

is that the Selonia setting is much more "personality driven", while the most impor-

tant factors in previous campaigns were the environment and the "grand strategy"

of the background, this campaign's development will be determined mostly by the

personalities and motivations of the various player and nonplayer characters.

This is also the reason why I decided to use the Pendragon system with its focus

on the characters' traits and passions instead of BRP or Cthulhu Dark Ages.

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