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Heroes Community > Heroes 7+ Altar of Wishes > Thread: Minn's fanfactions thread
Thread: Minn's fanfactions thread This thread is 2 pages long: 1 2 · NEXT»

Known Hero
Green eyed monster
posted March 07, 2011 02:08 AM
Edited by Minnakht at 14:38, 10 May 2011.

Minn's fanfactions thread

However, due to the fact that I don't know the mechanics at all, and that it's meant to be a H6 faction, all I can give now is the creature lineup with skills. With formatting stolen from the faction overview thread!

hope you give criticism


“We will survive by any means”

Those of the humans who didn't believe in the Holy Empire and Elrath set off to a journey, exiled from the Empire's territory for that very reason. Holing themselves up in outlying regions of the world, they tried to just thrive undisturbed through the wars and set up an empire of their own. The few mages that came with them tried to establish a new object of worship, and succeeded at opening a portal, possibly to another world... but the only summoned beings were more humans, seeking refuge from their own threat. The two groups got along well, creating an incredibly populous nation, and as a side effect, humans started to believe in themselves, eschewing the worship of gods entirely, explaining all divine acts as the doing of actual magic. The sheer size of the population caused the new nation to become nigh-dystopian, though.

However, other civilizations and wars eventually found the newly dubbed Crowd, as a ruler with an actual sense of humour decided on the name after seeing the crowd of humans outside of his quarters. Crowdians decided that participating in wars could be actually lucrative for them, as means of expanding their territory to house the overpopulated nation, and allied with the Holy Empire, willing to stomp anyone in their way to take over the territories - Demons, undead, whatever.

In a nutshell: A more cynical human nation, relying completely on their immense manpower. Their strength lies completely in numbers.
Inspiration: Discworld, Discworld, modern times in general.

Associated colours: brown, green. Orange and grey with a green tinge are used officially, though.
Symbols: the human silhouette, the boar.
Worship: Themselves, the humans, looking back at their own achievements.
Core philosophy: Survival by any means. The immense amounts of procreation are one of the results.
Country / kingdom: The Crowd
Capital city: Ningeberg, a city set deep in a mountain range where the first Crowdians settled down

The original reason of the schism was the fact that some people didn't want to worship Elrath, fearful of the angels and dissatisfied with the idea of a lawful theocracy. Later, in Ningeberg, the seeking experiment produced huge amounts of humans, which felt as otherworldly as the angels and became an object of worship. That tradition was continued in the further years, even after the two groups have merged and bred with each other.

The recent events
Eventually, living in Ningeberg and close to it became nearly impossible to sustain with the population's numbers spiralling out of control. The new nation has spread to a further region, and started bordering with the Holy Empire once again, which was too busy to object. When the demons appeared, the Crowd had no other option than to fight back, having to survive the invasion.

Social organization:
The Crowd usually has multiple leaders, with each one governing over a city. There is no single leader of all of them, actually. The cities know they are not parts of the Holy Empire or another faction, and that gives them unity. However, the leader of Ningeberg is usually highly revered amongst the others, and influences the other cities that way. They know that without Ningeberg, they wouldn't exist, and feel respect to whoever manages to rule over the first city, compelled to follow his or her requests by a twisted yet functional sense of honor.
Inside the cities, most people are farmers, trying to feed the population. Each city has a district of artisans, where other necessary products are made. A large number of people is left jobless and without a piece of gold on them, usually just lying around on the streets, taking every odd job available and trying to eke out a living. Nobility is unheard of. People can find work as scribes or historians, though, if a need arises.

Architecture: Due to scarcity of resources, Crowd cities, known as Crowdels (because one of the rulers of Ningeberg decided portmanteaus and citadels are both liked) are built out of whatever's available. The massive workforce mines down in the soil until a stone layer is found, then the stone is used for all purposes. Large communal buildings are more common than personal ones, which are usually poorer and made of wood if not hay. The buildings are conservative and poor in their looks, being mostly functional - there is no wealth to let them be ornamental.

Magic: Due to the lack of belief, the original art of magic used in Ashan was not usable for Crowdians for a long time. The portal to another world had humans bring their own magic with them, unknown to Ashan. It, however, was mostly lost, with not much knowledge of it remaining - Animastones and some remnants of wind-elemental magic are the most known examples. Nowadays, aside from those two, mages of the Crowd seek to improve their relations with the Ashan gods. They are not outcasts of the Crowd due to this, though - average Crowdians are tolerant and too busy to care what does his neighbor worship.

Crowd Warfare: “Everything we've got. Everyone we've got.”

The troops of the Crowd are mostly human. The nearly lost magic of the other world is also used in warfare - it is nearly lost for the very reason that it was useless for any other purpose. Being unused to fighting, Crowdian units do not have much in terms of clear tactics, aside from enjoying a numerical advantage.
* Strengths: Generally resilient and very numerous troops. Luck. Displacing is a common theme.
* Weaknesses: Lack of tactics and synergy, possibly? Ranged attacks are hard to find in the early troops, too. Lack of magic resistance in general.
* Racial ability: Cunning – All special abilities of creatures work more often and have more impact. Additionally, everything on the battlefield is extensively salvaged on victory, with ethics allowing any move except for cannibalism. Most of the time.

Crowd Units



Recruited directly from the streets, Hordes are those humans who failed to obtain a profession in a city and are just taking up space on the streets. They are willing to serve in the army, receiving meals, a purpose, and a chance at glory, or at least so heroes promise them. Armed with whatever can be found, most often a quarterstaff or a simple bow, and completely unarmored as well as untrained, they tend to fall quickly, but their sheer numbers make up for that, as well as the feeling of "more for me" in those who survive.

The Legion is an upgraded Horde.

Flood (Basic & Upgrade): Not knowing much in terms of tactics, Hordes tend to demonstrate their numbers by splitting up into many smaller groups. That doesn't take them much time, but it ironically gives them lots of tactical possibilities - no other troop can surround the enemy all by itself, tangling them up and tiring them out.
Rock (Basic & Upgrade): The Hordes have a lot of experience from public demonstrations. Having worked with smaller or larger stone blocks a time or two, they know how to chuck one just fine, often with incredible aim and strength for someone looking half-starved. When pelting enemies who can't respond with their own fire, they often break out into laughter, and the rain of heavy, earthen missiles is actually pretty potent. However, the actual range of such an attack is quite low.
Hopeless (Upgrade): "No, no, no. I'm not going back." Those are the words of one of the Legions. Remembering their previous life on the streets, the Legions do not want to go back there ever again. Feeling gratitude towards the hero that tore them out of there and gave them tens of gold pieces, those soldiers will fight fervently and to the death, never faltering.
Cling (Upgrade): Up close and personal is one thing a Legion understands completely. When told to, they will mix in with the enemies, using their knives in close quarters combat together with grappling and wrestling the enemies. With enough numbers, which aren't hard to come by, Legions can immobilize any enemy unit or at least severely restrict its movement and formation, and shooting into the resultant mess of bodies causes both sides of the conflict to be hit - even if the enemy is doing the shooting.

Looks like:
Horde: A man, wearing only a short tunic made of pale green cloth, with a thick beard and wielding a quarterstaff.
Legion: The quarterstaff is now a makeshift spear due to an attached knife. The tunic is brown, and similar brown leggings and actual shoes join the uniform. The hair is less unkempt.


The building blocks of the society, Artisans are the miners, smiths, crafters, builders and generally people assuring the cities thrive. Those are harder to recruit than the Hordes, actually liking their own jobs, but can be convinced to do so. On the battlefield, they are valuable allies - in their jobs, they use chisels no smaller than the daggers, hammers no smaller than maces, absolutely incomparable and fearsome mattocks, and the heavy menial labour makes them no weaker than soldiers that have been training for all their life.

The Artisan's upgrade is the Handyman.

Entrench (Basic & Upgrade): The Artisans have hewn the lower parts of any Crowdel out of the rock it was built on, and used the excavated rock to build the rest of it. That job is often performed by them on a battlefield, albeit on a smaller scale. The hastily dug trenches and low walls provide a good place to hold ground for any ally, while being a nuisance for the enemies doomed to walk through them.
Experience (Upgrade): Handymen are truly fearsome people. In their lives, they have tried many jobs, ranging from hunting, though butchery and tanning, to medicine. That gives them a knowledge on where to hit to deal the most damage, how to keep the wounded from dying, although without bringing the dead back to life, but most importantly, the immense stench of rotting organs and tanning ingredients, which saps the enemies' will to life if they can smell it. Handymen know how to produce equipment out of scraps and how to retrofit the enemy's, what helps the army's equipment, making them defend and attack better. Their cooking and brewing abilities help at keeping an army's morale up, too. Not to mention their mechanical inclination, repairing war machines both during combat and after it's over.

Looks like:
Artisan: A large, muscular man, wearing a brown apron and green leggings, as well as a sleeveless, tan shirt, also sporting a short yet full beard. Wields a large mattock as a weapon, with a shovel on his back and several knives and a chisel at his belt.
Handyman: The shirt now has sleeves and is orange. The apron is still brown, but darker, and the leggings are grey. Instead of a shovel, the Handyman wears a huge backpack with tools dangling off it. A simple metal helmet is added, as well as a breastplate under the apron, greaves, cuisses, spaulders and vambraces worn over the leggings and shirt respectively.


The first known usage of Animastones are the Capsizes. Originally similar to golems, the prototype was a humanoid made of metal, which was then made alive by placing an Animastone chunk inside it. It did hold up for a long time when attacked, but was too costly to produce. Further experiments found out that flattening the body into a thin sheet helps save resources. Additional research caused the Capsizes to ultimately take the form which is known now, full of sharp edges, with arms coming to long, sharp points.

The Decayed Cap is the upgraded Capsize.

Elemental (Basic & Upgrade): The Capsizes are made purely of metal, for it is the only material an Animastone affects. Not having any blood vessels nor muscles, they are immune to poison and anything that would ail an organic body, yet they have purely living minds. Those minds, however, differ so much from human ones, it isn't possible for them to be disrupted by human magic.
Lightning Rod (Basic): Being made purely of metal, Capsizes attract lightning, and are purely capable of diverting it from hitting allies, but also enemies. The area of effect is based on the amount of Capsizes.
Two-Armed Attack (Basic & Upgrade): Being made purely for combat, those living metal creatures have two sharp-edged, pointy arms each. One arm is preferred, just like it's the case with humans, but both are equally capable at hitting enemies - either both attacks focused on a single enemy, or, sometimes when possible, one to one group and the second to another.
Flying Blades (Upgrade): Usually, when a Capsize is torn into pieces, it dies like a living being would. However, Capsizes that are left to time decay, with the metal sheets breaking from the constant bending back and forth... yet remain alive, with each part capable of movement. A Decayed Cap is essentially several, usually seven (torso, two arms, four legs) pieces of a Capsize, with even more sharp edges and corners than before. The fact they're not so solid any longer lets them fly right through enemy squads and obstacles. The former is an especially fearsome manoeuvre, as the pieces spin and slash at the soldiers in the squad they're passing through.
Flying Arms (Upgrade): The Decayed Cap's arms are detached from the torso and can fly freely. That ability lets them send their arms to attack an enemy at a distance, over obstacles and not allowing retaliation - what is the enemy meant to slash at, after all?
Split Target (Upgrade): Enemy soldiers often are confused when attacking Decayed Caps - mostly because they already seem like they should be dead. It's hard to tell which part is severed from the body and which isn't, what coupled with the simple ability to play dead causes the enemies to cease attacking when they see loads of severed bits lying motionlessly on the battlefield - but, most often, most of the bits will rear up and retaliate, being indistinguishable from the actually dead ones.

Looks like:
Capsize: A flat, circular torso, about four feet in diameter, with a perpendicular rim welded to the circumference, which is about a foot wide. Two flat, also foot-wide arms extend from the sides of the torso, being about five feet long and coming to a point at the ends. Four legs, again only a foot wide, extend from the bottom of the torso, two of them bent forwards and two bent backwards. Those are three feet long. On the back of the torso, two pipes arranged in a cross are located, strengthening the structure against bending. In the front of the torso, at the uppermost part of it, there's a metal lump attached to both the rim and the torso. The Animastone is inside. Capsizes are generally made of iron, and painted bright green on the back.
Decayed Cap: The arms are torn off from the rim. So are the legs. The legs are stabbed upright into the ground, the other three parts are hovering above them.



The Crowd's farmers have adopted the humble boar as a farm animal back in the times, even before Ningeberg was established. Through the years, boars were bred to become much larger, to help provide food for the Crowd. They were also used for pulling plows and as pack animals. Due to their natural ferocity, not dulled by the years of servitude, only experienced farmers could use them. That practice was kept until the modern times and still is. However, due to the need of an army, said boars, or hogs, were introduced into the ranks. When convinced with enough gold, a farmer, supplied with armour and a long pole-mace, agrees to ride one of those beasts into the battle, becoming a formidable foe - nothing compared to a Sun Rider, but much more common.

The Hogger upgrade is the Hogpulled.

Stunning Charge (Basic): Much like any mounted troop, a Hogger uses the momentum gained by riding his steed to his advantage. When reaching the enemy, the hog performs a headbutt tackle against the enemy. The shock generally causes the enemy to scramble and lose time regrouping, while being gored with the hogs' tusks and bashed by the farmer sitting on top.
Wild Charge (Upgrade): The Hogpulled's namesake is what makes them so fearsome - the rider stops being the rider and becomes just a rear attachment, prodding the hormone-ridden, alpha hog with a sharp instrument to just force it to obey. The charge of Hogpulled is truly unstoppable - when charging in a straight line, they will knock the non-target enemies aside, trample over those they can't move away, and when reaching the target, actually hit it so hard it's sent flying back, then chase the target down as far as strength allows or until the enemy stops squashed against an obstacle. The flying part, especially the landing, causes the same stunning effect as the Hoggers have, so nothing of value is lost.
No Control (Upgrade): In the rider-hog pair that forms a Hogpulled, it's the hog who actually decides on what to do - the rider only gives it hints, which the hog mercifully decides to follow. The hog's mind is so strong and simple, it's impossible to control nor maim. The rider is affected, though... but when such a thing happens, the hog just takes over fully and starts attacking by itself, targetting only the enemies, not losing any combat potential.
Large Creature (Basic & Upgrade): Self-explanatory

Looks like:
Hogger: A giant, dire boar, with a rider sitting on top. The boar is huge, with thick tusks, and dark brown due to the hairiness. The rider wears a breastplate and legplates, painted brown, over a green shirt and leggings, as well as a helmet. He also wields a spiked ball on a shaft which is about two meters long at least.
Hogpulled: An even larger, wilder boar, with scars and dried blood left in its hair. Lying flat on top of it and held with ropes, there is a rider, wearing orange clothes under black armour.

Wind Mage

Perhaps the closest thing the Crowd has for a regular army, Wind Mages are elite troops serving their cities. They, unlike the other soldiers, are properly armoured (a honor even a lowly Sentinel receives in any Haven) and use their Wind Magic and doubleswords, forged by the most skilled artisans out of the best steel, in combat.

The Miasma Mage is the upgraded Wind Mage.

Whirdwind (Basic & Upgrade): The Wind Mages' primary method of attack is rapid strikes with their doubleswords. The strikes soon turn into a spinning motion before the attack is over, invoking the Wind enchantment within and summoning a gale-force wind that pushes the whole enemy squads back from the Wind Mages before they can retaliate. Usually, the landing is harmless for the enemy, but if they're sent flying into an obstacle, then heavy concussion follows.
Flying Slashes (Basic & Upgrade): Using a spell prepared before each battle much like an archer prepares his arrows, Wind Mages can enchant their blades for about a minute to produce a blade of razor wind with each cut. Those waves of cutting air hack into everything caught in the whirlwind, adding injury to injury. Unfortunately, that technique can't be used infinitely.
Flight (Basic & Upgrade): By catching updrafts with their spacious robes, updrafts being caused by their own spells, Wind Mages are capable of flight, an ability that has gained them a lot of popularity amongst simple people. It is also useful for crossing the battlefield.
Choking Wind (Upgrade): The Miasma Mages are those of the Wind Mages that moved on with their studies past the reaches of Wind Magic. Using what is possibly dark arts from another world, they imbue their usual whirlwinds with a mixture of vile gases - leaving the enemy poisoned, out of breath and out of fighting spirit.

Looks like:
Wind Mage: Wrapped from head to toe in thick robes, with the face covered. The robes are colourful, with pale green and other shades of green being the most dominant colour, yellow being another common one, along with white. A doublesword is wielded - you know those, two blades mounted on the ends of a short quarterstaff.
Miasma Mage: The clothes take on a purplish tint and become even thicker. There is a bad atmosphere about them, with some sort of vile mist encompassing a Miasma Mage.


Those imposing golems are hewn out of magnetite, hematite, or any ore of metal, with the two being the most common on the Crowd's territories. Large chunks of an Animastone are then installed within, animated the iron or another metal trapped within the ore. Living Ore is a sluggish creature of rock and metal, trained to hurl other similarly-sized rocks at the enemy.

The Living Metal is the upgraded (refined) Living Ore.

Elemental (Basic & Upgrade): Once again, Living Ore is just a being composed of stone and most usually iron. While having a mind of its own, it doesn't have any other human features, and said mind is not very similar to one a living being of this world would have. Magic created to affect humans and animals of this world can't maim Living Ores.
No Melee Penalty Shooter (Basic & Upgrade): The Living Ore is trained to hurl giant rocks at the enemy, true. However, their imposing fists make just as good of an impression in enemies as the rocks do, being rocks themselves.
Knockback (Basic & Upgrade): The Living Ore packs such fearsome power behind its fists and close-range missiles alike that they tend to send unfortunate enemy squads flying or running away from them. This ability makes tangling the Living Ore up in combat so much harder, as whoever tries is promptly sent away.
Area Attack (Upgrade): With the refinement from the Living Ore to pure Living Metal comes not only a change of form, but also additional training. Making use of the newfound body's capabilities, the Living Metal learns how to crack the thrown rocks just before hurling them so they shatter into stone shrapnel upon landing or split into a shower midair, hitting so much more enemies.
Lightning Rod (Upgrade): Now made of pure metal, Living Metal can attract lightning just like its lesser Capsize brethren. Their sheer size reduces the numbers needed to attract lightning from a wider area, giving more protection to their allies.
Large Creature (Basic & Upgrade): Self-Explanatory

Looks like:
Living Ore: Take a humanoid earth elemental, like the H3 one. Make it wider and remove facial features. Give it the rock of a H3 cyclops. Make it nearly black, with some parts being dark red. Done.
Living Metal: Retexture the Living Ore to be smooth and dark grey. Make the model smoother. Done.



The mere Hordes are never forgotten. Recently, the cities' hospitals have started to accept volunteers from the streets, much like the Hordes are. What goes on inside the hospitals is not fully known. Eventually, there was a single end result, known as an Experiment - a malformed, five-armed, three-legged abomination. The hospital's director promptly sent the Experiment to Ningeberg, where its true potential was shown in sparring. Given three swords and two shields, the Experiment defeated a horde of Hordes. Since then, they started to be as mass-produced as possible, but only rare, freak cases of people become Experiments. Yet, the supply of people volunteering never dwindled - either because of the overpopulation, or the fact an Experiment is paid insane sums when serving in the army, not to mention that having five arms is quite handy.

The Overenchanted is the upgraded Experiment.

Healing Factor (Basic): The creation of an Experiment includes extensive surgery and transplanting. During that time, most subjects die - those who don't are those with extremely resilient bodies, with them having enough of a survival instinct to not throw the grafted-on limbs and muscles away. The pharmaceutical additions during that time push the natural healing abilities up to even higher levels. An Experiment left alive can come back to full health within minutes, being an avatar of unsurpassed vitality.
Unlimited Retaliation (Basic & Upgrade): It can be said about many things that they have eyes in the backs of their heads, with that being a saying denoting superior perception and alertness of the subject. Experiments actually DO have said extra eyes. And ears. And incredible amounts of stamina. That lets the Experiments respond to any attack the enemy throws at it without fail.
No Enemy Retaliation (Basic & Upgrade): The attack of an Experiment is mesmerizing. The swift movement of three blades, the multitude of eyes staring at you, not only from the face, seeing its wounds patch up as you look at it... it's so ferocious in its beauty and so quick the enemy is afraid of trying to attack back.
Many Blessings (Upgrade): The Experiments-in-advancing serve as training grounds for the new mages of the Crowd. Their repeated castings of various enhancing spells leaves a permanent effect in the bodies of Experiments, turning them into Overenchanted. As such, they start each battle being affected by the spells, and the spells constantly renew themselves as time goes on. The extreme magic overload causes the enemy's spells to be partially deflected, seeing as not much more magic can fit in such a body, and they tend to have shorter-lasting effects if they actually manage to affect the Overenchanted at all.
True Regeneration (Upgrade): The natural healing factor of an Experiment is further improved with magic. The magic stolen from the Holy Empire... the magic of resurrection. Overenchanted seem to operate on the very concept of lifeforce, constantly producing immense amounts of it - it gushes from their bodies, repairing even the broken bodies of fallen Overenchanted, and, if close, also other fallen allies.

Looks like:
Experiment: A three-legged, five-armed humanoid. It has about eleven eyes, five of which are on the head. It is dressed in leggings only. It is covered in scars and stitches. It has reddish skin and breathes out white mist. It wields two shields in its left arms and three long, wide blades in its right arms. It is about eight feet tall and has no hair. It has rivets stuck in its body in a few spots.
Overenchanted: As above, but has more cloth on it. The skin is purplish, and there's a soft blue glow emanating from it. It still exhales white mist.

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Tavern Dweller
posted March 07, 2011 02:30 AM

This is very extensive. Nice breakdown.
I do agree that humans should have a sort of darkside to them like the alternate upgrade in homm 5 for haven. I like it. Only problem is that it sounds very similar to inferno who also focus on strength in numbers over everything. It would still be nice to see a faction that is focused on abilities, luck, and morale over everything, but right now homm 6 needs a magic faction.

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Undefeatable Hero
Altar Dweller
posted March 07, 2011 02:30 AM

am not capable of truly reading throuhg it, as mentioned in the cg. however, it seems a nice, rather humorous approach
ICTC announced

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Adventuring Hero
posted March 07, 2011 01:44 PM

hmmm, imho, Experiment sounds weak.  What can a human do with extra limbs? Maybe it should be Gigantic Man or Dragon Golem

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Legendary Hero
my common sense is tingling!
posted March 07, 2011 03:55 PM

hmmm, imho, Experiment sounds weak.  What can a human do with extra limbs?

Love, Laugh, Learn, Live.

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Known Hero
Green eyed monster
posted March 07, 2011 04:50 PM

It's not only extra limbs. Extra limbs, spare organs, additional sensory organs, a healing factor, immense stamina, and improved strength.

Improved strength means improved speed, too. Rushing on their three legs, they can cross most of the battlefield in a single move. They have enough strength to crumple up a steel breastplate with their bare hands, and can tie knots on swords in a similar fashion. They could arm-wrestle with a Cyclops and end up with the arm in place. They could only barely lose to a Seraph at arm-wrestling. Not sure how would a Pit Fiend do, but I guess it could actually lose. That an Experiment isn't some huge thing only helps its mobility. Besides, pressure increases as surface area decreases. A smaller punch with equal force hurts more than a larger one, that's why we stab.
And then when we upgrade them... then, if it was H5, they'd cast Haste, Righteous Might, Endurance, Deflect Missile and Divine Strength on themselves every second turn. In H6, they'll have to use equivalents, but still.


Large creatures: 2 (hogs and living ore)
Shooters: 1+1 (living ore, hordes have a semi-ranged attack. Decayed caps and wind mages have a semi-ranged attack, but it doesn't count)
Flying: 1/2 (decayed caps are semi-flying, they can fly THROUGH units but not obstacles... so can hogpulled, but via trampling.)
Casters: none


Wind Mages now are capable of flight by summoning updrafts and catching them in their spacious robes. Whirling their doubleswords above their heads is just for a comedic purpose and doesn't act as a propeller.


A magic faction, you say? Well, I forgot to introduce the hero...


Wanderers are the new mages of the Crowd, those blessed with enough charisma to become known. Unlike the other mages, staying in the cities, Wanderers live up to their names by setting off on journeys all around the world, learning the magic of other nations by the means of espionage. Being so focused on magic, they never learn how to use more complicated weapons than a dagger and a club. Instead, they practice with those and achieve mastery. An experienced Wanderer can throw three daggers with pinpoint accuracy faster than you can blink! And then he can follow up with a spell, possibly even learned while visiting your hometown. You've seen those guys waiting to be recruited in taverns... guess what were they doing at the time.
Wanderers tend to not specialize in any school of magic. However, those serving in the Crowd's military adjust their studies to focus on general bolstering magic, widely known as blessings. As such, they partake in creation of the Overenchanted, being one or a few of the severalty mages needed to create one.

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Undefeatable Hero
Altar Dweller
posted March 07, 2011 04:51 PM

I added your faction to the user's faction list, hope that's ok for you.
ICTC announced

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Known Hero
Green eyed monster
posted March 07, 2011 04:57 PM

I know you did, I've seen that thread... and it's perfectly fine. It deserves to be there, right?

Oh, and... Cunning works like "Soldier's Luck" and "Spoils of War" combined, both being Luck perks in H5 or so. I think.

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Known Hero
Green eyed monster
posted March 16, 2011 12:44 AM
Edited by Minnakht at 00:53, 16 Mar 2011.


“Everything needs to be tested, no matter the cost.”

Various mages and wizards of the Seven Cities have established various towns devoted to inventing new objects and technologies. That was the place where golems were created after years of arduous experiments regarding the structure and the enchantment. The cities found many uses, and many creative uses of magic were found inside.

Eventually, however, the experiments spiralled lower and lower on the scale of ethics, the creation of orcs being one of them. The first necromancers also joined the research team, and their views helped with changing the experiment themes to the more controversial. After years, the studies became so immoral, they provoked a reaction from the Holy Empire, and the Seven Cities themselves also were long fed up with the labs' low reputation and actually aided the purge. The cities, devoid of any civilized inhabitants, became quickly overrun by whatever was created inside.

Only just recently, a sect of both maniacal wizards and less maniacal necromancers, as well as a few potential demon followers, has taken over the ruined cities and restored them to working order, seeking to make their own little nation where they'd have absolute freedom to perform research - or at least that's the wizards' motivation, while necromancers are seeking to gain a better foothold in the world's politics and the demon followers would rather use the absolute freedom for other personal reasons.

In a nutshell: An equivalent of mad or misunderstood scientists, reclaiming the land of what practically was their ancestors, now overrun by mostly kobolds.

Inspiration: For the faction itself, the general idea of mad scientists. For the creatures, it's a mishmash of various sources.

Associated colous: Purple and grey, as well as green once the necromancers joined.
Symbols: A third of a cog, a skull, and a book, all put together to form a single object.
Worship: The obsessive wizards have foregone faith to focus on 'science', but are dubious followers of Elrath. The necromancers are followers of Asha, and the rest is too afraid to openly worship Urgash.
Core Philosophy: "Knowledge is Power". They just wish to understand the world, for personal gains or satisfaction, and are willing to use what they know to protect themselves, or preemptively wipe out whoever could oppose them in the future.
Country / Kingdom: Still the Seven Cities, at least territorially. Or wherever wizards live.
Capital City" Their own? They could choose one of the cities if they wanted to, probably...

Known dragons, nothing special to see here

Recent Events
The repopulation of the cities, luckily not fallen into disrepair, is a recent event. The cities were found overrun by kobold tribes, which were promptly enslaved by humans. The next few months were spent on repairs and finding other threats in the lower city levels, then finding out what exactly has happened and what were the results. The experiments left a lot of prototypes, which were promptly weaponized and their production was started anew.

Social Organization: The sect isn't particularly large. There is a single leader, which hasn't even died yet, then his sub-leaders, each controlling a sect division claiming a single city and maintaining it. They are then divided into various low-number teams, meant to either research, experiment, or oversee the kobolds.
The kobolds themselves used to form tribes before being conquered and enslaved. They aren't particularly rebellious, feeling that a higher, strong force is capable of protecting them from whatever they couldn't protect themselves from. Aside from that, their overlords aren't particularly oppressive.

Architecture: The architecture is nearly exactly the same as that of the Seven Cities, but less decorated, with the labolatories being built just for research - in case a massive explosion would occur and/or taint the whole city with deadly magic for a long time, no one would miss it too much. Years of sandstorms and lack of maintenance caused the buildings to be mostly ruined, if standing, but the sect's members don't mind working in such ramshackle places, only doing repairs to assure it all won't fall apart.

Magic: Due to the pursuit of knowledge, the sect's mages don't specialize, trying to achieve arcane omniscence one day. However, due to how experiments work, they specialize in property-changing magic, no matter the school, and in healing or animating magic, of all things - if it's worth seeing what a spell can do to a kobold, then it's worth repairing said kobold for further trials or seeing how will a kobold zombie behave under effect of the same spell.

Emblematic Labolatory Hero: The Mastermind(Magic)

Those of the sect who are adept tacticians or just feel charismatic enough to command whatever the troops can be classified as are dubbed Masterminds. Their job consists of thinking - how to defeat the enemy while minimizing losses, how to gain the most for the sect - and casting magic. In battle, they sit at a chessboard-like table, on which they have a clear overview of the situation, only getting up to make their own impact in the form of a spell or two, and use controllers that sit around the table and act as squad leaders - that is in case a squad is somehow unable to follow orders directly from the Mastermind. The technique is derived from the Necromancers, which also bind all the undead to their will.

Lab Strategy: "Try out stuff"

The units available for the Masterminds to use are varied and unfitting. Most of them can do something special. See how can you use them for maximum efficiency.

* Strengths: Lots and lots of abilities, most units are inorganic and/or mindless.
* Weaknesses: Generally low unit amounts.
* Racial ability: Overload - When affected by any kind of magic, the units feel like it's familiar territory and work or feel better.

The army is mostly composed of various experiments, most of them controlled by controller wizards, which in turn are controlled by a Mastermind, also updating the situation on a chessboard. The experiments themselves, for the most part, aren't capable of individual thinking, being somehow mindless if arguably alive. They however are quite dangerous - even if the original intent of their creators wasn't to make them like that, they either turned out to be that unintentionally, or were weaponized.

Labolatory Units



Those knee-high arachnids were found in various underground areas of the cities, changed into those abominable forms by magic spillages and the like resultant from the Holy Empire's purge just breaking stuff without knowing what can such acts cause. Necromancers quickly started their research on those, having an unhealthy fixation with spiders, and to their pleasure, found out that the spiders actively assemble corpses into their bodies when growing up, using various substances found in rot and mold to concoct their own venom as well.
Then they started binding those to their will, doing a job no worse than with undead, and sent them to battlefields. A necromancer controller is used to control the spiders.

The Night Spider is the upgraded Crypt Spider.

Venomous Bite (Basic & Upgrade): Whatever poison is produced in the body of one of those spiders, it’s a potent one, causing severe systemic necrosis to the afflicted. It’s easy to cure, but if left unattended, it’s universally lethal to anything organic, causing their bodies to decay with the bodyowners being very well alive in the process.
Mindless (Basic & Upgrade): The brain of a spider is little and, in this case, also twisted beyond understanding of many people. The controller is the only person capable of manipulating those - enemy heroes have no chance of influencing a spider’s mind in any way.
Depressant Bite (Upgrade): It’s generally unknown how did it happen - possibly through a further experiment by the necromancers. Either way, the Night Spider’s venom not only causes severe systemic necrosis, it also causes the afflicted to lose hope and saps their fighting spirit. Its curability hasn’t decreased, though.
Invisible (Upgrade): The real reason of the name Night Spiders is that night is the only time you’ll ever see one. Flesh of those peculiar beings, for no explainable reason, behaves like shadow, fading out of sight more the more light falls on it. Even on a cloudy day, the amount of sunlight is easily enough to reduce the Night Spider to a barely visible, shadowy silhouette that merges with all the other shadow you see, fooling enemy scouts and in-battle armies alike - until met face to barely visible mandibles.

Looks like:
Crypt Spider: A spider, with the torso about at knee-height. It’s dark brown and has large mandibles.
Night Spider: A spider of about the same size, but its texture is a nearly transparent, shadowy one. It has glowing red eyes.


Some kobolds have the dubious honour of getting to actually fight instead of doing simple, dangerous menial work in the cities or just being sacrifices for various causes. In battle, they use shortbows and leather armour made of kobold leather.

The Kobold Operative is the Kobold Soldier upgrade.

Shooter (Basic & Upgrade): Shortbows.
Hopeless (Basic & Upgrade): Kobolds very well know what awaits them if they return to a city. They will never falter in a battle, always showing fighting spirit, happy they can do actual fighting instead of boring work, and are content to die such honourable deaths, better than being crushed by a giant cog.
Explosive (Upgrade): Kobold Operatives are masters of sabotage, in their own opinion. That doesn’t stop them from being adept bombers, dropping simple semi-magical explosives on the battlefield to great effect. Their stock is quite limited, though.

Looks like:
Kobolds are small lizardous humanoids, with tails, about four feet tall. Their scales are yellowish, letting them blend in when in a desert environment.
Kobold Soldiers wear tunics and leggings, made of kobold leather, which is darker yellow. They wield shortbows.
Kobold Operatives dye their armour to a dark colour, a nearly black one, and wear black headbands. They have several simple-packet bombs at their belts, and use many leather belts to keep their armour a tight fit.


One of the more innocent experiments was production of books capable of flight and reading themselves aloud, to help people find out about the book’s contents without having to carry it or read it, leaving both their hands and eyes free. As such, they had to be fitted with a simple amount of semi-sentience, just enough to follow orders. The amounts of magic used in creating those turned out to be quite high, making them quite impractical... but the deadliest side effect was that the books were completely capable of activating spells written in them, most often by reading, and could use them to their intended purpose. After a wizard ordered his book to blast his rival with a destructive spell, and it obeyed, the whole project was shut down, too dangerous for release.
Years later, the sect found the lost technology and, unsurprisingly, weaponized it.

The Destructome is the upgraded Grimoire.

Levitate (Basic & Upgrade): The Grimoires aren’t just capable of flight - they never land until their destruction causes them to disenchant. As such, they’re immune to anything just lying on the ground. They have to maintain a quite low altitude, only being capable of rising for a short time, due to how their enchantments work.
Caster (Basic & Upgrade): How exactly do the books themselves cast spells isn’t really known, seeing as they can’t perform gestures. Either way, they can cast everything that’s written in them - in case of Grimoires, it’s mostly debilitating spells and one or two rudimentary damaging ones. Destructomes have more spells and more capacity, enabling them to dish out much larger explosions.
Discharge (Upgrade): The amount of magic power stored in each Destructome is scary to just merely think about. When joined with the fragility of parchment, it forms a simple-recipe disaster - as a book becomes disenchanted due to its structural destruction, the magic stored inside is released right at whoever caused the damage.

Looks like:
Grimoire: A simple book with about thirty thick pages, spells written inside somehow. It has a thick cover, made of wood and painted purple.
Destructome: The book gets about ten additional pages, and the cover gains orange twisty lines on top of it. Normally they’d be gold decorations, but they’re orange this time.



An experiment performed by the necromancers just recently was a quite daring one - its purpose was to check if it’s possible to bind a spirit to a body, just like in the creation of a normal zombie, but the body in question still being a living one. After kidnapping a peasant and restraining him, the ritual began, and a soul of a dead wizard was successfully attached to him. The results were... peculiar, to say the least. The spirit couldn’t get a proper seat in the body, occupied by another one, but could get a foothold in it, and as such remained bound.

The Polyedimmu is an upgraded Edimmu.

Undead Mind(Basic & Upgrade): The body of an Edimmu is a living, human one. However, its mind is completely subdued and restrained, the spirit’s will controlling the body as it wishes, possessing it, in other words. The spiritual control is immune to all sorts of mind spells, like all undead - the body is meanwhile completely vulnerable to all purposes, as evidenced by the fact one turned into a rotting mess when pitted against a bunch of Crypt Spiders.
Energy Link(Basic & Upgrade): However, a different thing has been noticed - the spirit, due to the fact it doesn’t fit in the body wholly, manifests itself as a barely visible ghostly figure emerging from the host’s back, standing ankle deep in the flesh. Better yet, mere contact with the exposed spirit drained lifeforce from the spiders and any other living being, feeding it back to the body and healing it that way. The ghostly arms are also much stronger than flesh and even some metals, somehow. Because of this, Edimmu are not given weapons, their undead halves serving as a powerful one as they are.
Caster (Basic & Upgrade): The usual spirits used in production of Edimmu are those of dead wizards, not just any fresh harvest. The bodies don’t contain much place for mana, being already so full of spirits, but the spiritual mind usually retains knowledge from its life, and after just a rudimentary bit of retraining, they are capable of casting a single powerful spell, maybe two, before their mana reserves run dry. The ability is said to be potentially tide-turning.
Multi Attack(Upgrade): Polyedimmu were created in the process of a simple extension to the Edimmu Project - namely, checking if it’s possible to use more common kobold spirits, and if it’s possible to attach even more spirits to a single body. The results were varied - apparently, using just kobold spirits wasn’t enough, the wizard being a required component, and cramming two wizards into a single body was impossible and highly unstable, leading to a funny, if gory, accident. Eventually, the experiment settled when a wizard plus two kobold spirits configuration was created, stable, creatable from even a basic Edimmu by binding two kobold spirits to it, and deadlier in battle, as all three spirits function as separate fighting appendages, every single one capable of draining lifeforce... hitting up to three targets around the Polyedimmu, regardless of direction. Phew.

Looks like:
Edimmu: A human with his skin dyed pitch black, wearing a similarly black robe, and completely bald. Out of his back extends a ghostly figure, which is semi-opaque, nearly white, definitely humanoid, attached to the higher regions of the spine, and has glowing red eyes. Both of the figures are a bit taller than five feet.
Polyedimmu: Now with two smaller, four feet tall figures sporting green glowing eyes, emerging out of the human’s scapulas, or close to them.


What was meant to be an innocent, life-helping invention turned out to be prime material for a horrifying weapon yet again. The wizards back in the times of glory for Labolatories developed a battle-wide aura meant to collect the blood of fallen, for use in medicine and resurrection rituals and the like. After necromancers discovered the large amounts of blood stockpiled in the lower levels of the cities, they quickly concluded it’s grave matter no worse than any else and went ahead to animate it with large amounts of dark magic. The battle aura enchantment was meanwhile modified to affect a much smaller area, making it much stronger in the process - on direct contact with the now semi-sentient mass of blood, a living arm ruptured as blood was torn out of its veins to join the blob.
Massive kobold sacrifices for mass production ensued.

The Blood Vortex is the upgraded Bloodstain.

Remote Control (Basic & Upgrade): The Bloodstains are controlled by a necromancer controller in battle, not having much of a sentience otherwise. That makes them immune to mind spells.
Blood (Basic & Upgrade): Due to what a Bloodstain is made of and its structure, it is immune to many other spells that would ail living beings, too. There are, however, two notable exceptions - blood is perfectly capable of decay and being tainted by poison, as evidenced by a short test involving Crypt Spiders. The other exception... vampires.
Unsolid (Basic & Upgrade): Much like the ocean waves that can’t be stopped with anything short of a cliff face, the Bloodstains are perfectly capable of flowing directly amongst the enemy ranks, in between legs or lack thereof, creating a creepy, knee-deep sea of blood that additionally tears the blood from the leg vessels of anyone standing in it. Better yet, it’s impossible to shoot the Bloodstains without accidentally hitting whoever is standing in them! That, however, is also their greatest flaw - they are completely incapable of blocking the enemy’s movement. As much as they can slow down the enemy’s passage through themselves and make it harmful, as well as tangle up shooters in combat, they can’t outright bodyblock anyone.
Soak (Basic): Whenever anyone standing in a Bloodstain is wounded, then blood, if applicable, falls into it and restores it.
Levitate (Upgrade): Much like the Grimoires, the Blood Vortices are constantly airborne and don’t exert much of downwards pressure at all, and so gain the same benefits.
Blood Pull (Upgrade): The enchantment causing the Blood Vortices to constantly gather blood from its surroundings has been improved considerably in creation of those. They can gather all blood being spilled even in their surrounding space, and pull some directly out of bodies standing in said vicinity - even small amounts from dead bodies. The effect is still stronger within the vortex itself.

Large Creature

Looks like:
Bloodstain: A very dark red, knee-high blob. It’s rather flat, as it’s got enough diameter to be a large creature.
Blood Vortex: A much brighter red being, sporting the cliched shape of a funnel cloud. It’s about three-four meters tall, swirling, and as wide as the Bloodstain was.


Meant to be a breakthrough in transportation, Rolleys are orbs about four meters in diameter, split into two hemispheres, each capable of rotating independently at high speeds. A secure hatch leads to an internal cockpit, which starting with the second prototype, doesn’t rotate with the whole vehicle, reducing the risk of vomiting to nearly zero.
When the wizards noticed there is no way of seeing the movement’s direction from inside, as well as the low carrying capacity, the project was ditched.
After the sect’s members ran over several dozen kobolds with one of the prototypes, they were quickly reinforced and introduced to the army, where golems steered by a wizard controller started acting as drivers. The wizard has a clear view of the whole battlefield, thus eliminating the critical original flaw of the design.

The Crusher Tank is the upgraded Rolley.

Mechanical (Basic & Upgrade): Even if it’s a machine controlling a machine and being controlled by an outside wizard, it’s still fitting.
Charging (Basic & Upgrade): The Rolley rams into enemies to cause damage to them. Even if knowledge of physics isn’t really apparent in the times, the sect’s wizards know that higher speed means more destructive power and as such the controller actively tries to ram the squad of Rolleys into the enemy with the most velocity he can muster out of them.
Trample (Basic): Small units are no obstacle for a Rolley - the weaker ones just are ran over, the stronger ones are shoved aside in the passing. Only a large creature or an obstacle is a hindrance.
Unstoppable Charge (Upgrade): Nothing short of an indestructible terrain obstacle can stop a Crusher Tank. Small units, large units, strong units, allied units - no matter, the Crusher Tank just goes in a straight line, squashing everything in its way into the ground. Not even castle walls and other buildings are safe - the Crusher Tank’s force of impact is much higher than that of a rock launched by a siege machine, let alone multiple of them. They also freely run over moats.

Large Creature

Looks like:
Rolley: Just a dark grey orb, four meters in diameter. It has a vertical cut in it along its whole circumference, which is light grey, and points straight in the direction the orb is ‘facing’.
Crusher Tank: If you laid a Rolley on the side, then the cut would become its equator. If you got the idea, then imagining the rest of a Crusher Tank’s looks is easy - just add a row of spikes along every tenth circle of latitude, and on the poles - a total of sixteen rows of spikes. It still stands with the cut being vertical.



Possibly the most atrocious experiment of all, and hands down the most dangerous one, led to the creation of this abomination. Several groups of demons, left over after the creation of Orcs, were forced to open gates on what was essentially a cube net, then assembled right as the gates appeared. Spells were cast right after - binding, containment, healing, even summoning elementals into the tight space inside.
Eventually, when the cube was unsealed, out came a terrifying mass of flesh, bone and other organs, its parts constantly shifting in and out of this plane, with most of said parts warping in and out of the limbo between Sheogh and Ashan, with the Sheogh side of the portal being long closed.
The wizards overseeing the experiment were quickly eaten and assimilated.
Years later, the first specimen was discovered by the sect, and managed to be forced into submission of a Controller... barely.

The Writhing Mass of Primal Chaos is the upgraded Gory Mess.

Consume (Basic & Upgrade): Due to the amounts of healing magic poured in those, as well as the fact parts constantly keep replacing one another, the Gory Mess is capable of freely attaching and detaching any bodily remains found on the battlefield to itself - unless the remains were a Gory Mess beforehand. The same thing, albeit to a lesser extent, also applies when simply attacking the enemy. A Gory Mess will always snatch a small, weak creature alive with its many tentacles and devour it before it has a chance to scream - the trick also works with better trained or stronger creatures, but much more rarely, and they have to be small.
Tentacles (Basic & Upgrade): The Gory Mess is capable of shaping its own flesh to a certain extent. Even with its abilities still undeveloped, it can form long tendrils out of something like twenty consecutive heads or a few arms, then use those to reel in whole enemy armies. The mere feeling of those oozing appendages grabbing you is also extremely demoralizing, mostly because of their tendency to explore bodily orifices of the victims. Even battle-hardened veterans retch at the sight of a tentacle forcing itself down a fellow soldier’s throat or similar before ripping his organs out...
Iceberg (Basic & Upgrade): In times of great fear, great enough even for this constantly pained, twisted, conjoined being to recognize, a Gory Mess can panic and temporarily disable its warping. Much like an iceberg by then, the enemy has access only to the thirty percent or so that is in this realm at the time - in times of great desperation, that saves the Mess from being instantly killed by some overwhelming enemy force, as after everything left in Ashan is dead, the warping restarts, sending in more of the Mess from the limbo it’s stuck in.
Remote Control (Basic & Upgrade): The mind of a Gory Mess is a conjoined, warped conglomerate, just like its body, created analogically from the minds of all the demons used in production of one. No human or a similar being could ever withstand casting a mind spell on one, and even the sect’s controllers just use a Maniac as a medium for controlling a Mess.
Corruption (Upgrade): Not only are the scrambled body parts of a Writhing Mass of Primal Chaos constantly shifting in and out of this plane, but also, as a result of further magical ‘enhancements’, they’re changing their shape and structure due to the powerful dark magic constantly twisting them. That effect is even more fearsome when the enemies realize it applies to them, too, spreading like the Masses radiate it... before being mutilated and masticated, a test kobold squad sent against the prototype noticed it’s tough to hold onto your bow when your hands turn into hooves and your feet grow thorns all over. The effects wary much more than that, though - paralysis is a common occurrence, for one. Most mutations caused to enemies have some positive effect and a great price that comes with it.

Large Creature

Looks like:
Gory Mess: Just a chaotic mixture of flesh, bone, horns, chains, hooves, feathers, and pure elemental representations, constantly warping. Use your blender. There are a few portals (like the gating position markers in H5) open stuck to its body, with the mess disappearing in them. Blood, ooze and water keeps dripping from the abomination.
Writhing Mass of Primal Chaos: The flesh has taken on a bruise-purple colour for some reason. There is a dark purple glow from the creature, as well as some kind of black mist.

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Undefeatable Hero
Altar Dweller
posted March 17, 2011 10:30 AM

The labratory idea is quite used here in HC^^ however, some very nice units are here...especially bloodstain and grimoiore in here, i find interesting!
ICTC announced

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Known Hero
Green eyed monster
posted May 15, 2011 11:46 PM
Edited by Minnakht at 12:25, 16 May 2011.


"Descended from heavens, we are willing to participate."

The first Roosts appeared on the highest mountaintops, where the first Jephrifs descended to Ashan. They were left undiscovered for a long time, during which Jephrifs amassed their armies. Their origins aren’t really known. What they have said about themselves only says they lived far above the ground ever since they remember, had no previous contact with other races, and that they have an innate ability to communicate with any being.
Their cities are spread all over Ashan now, and they pledge no allegiance, fighting against no one and everyone.

Inspiration: One creature is taken from somewhere, one more is taken from Eastern sources, and two are surprisingly Pokemon. Jephrifs are as original as something created nowadays can be, though. Their attitude is a tongue-in-cheek reference.
Symbols: A simple deltoid shape with six visible facets, resembling the overall shape of a Jephrif.
Worship: Sylath, the Dragon God of Air. They also exhibit medium awareness, and sometimes make remarks about how they’re just participating in a game of military strategy, in which cases, they also refer to another god.
Country / kingdom: All of Ashan’s high skies is their unnamed country. The Roosts, their surface cities, are too spread out to be joined in a single country, too.
Capital city: The capital city, Heliodor, is located in the mountains east of the Holy Empire.
Social organization: Jephrifs have a single leader, residing in Heliodor, and one leader in each city, which responds before him. They constantly communicate using their innate gift of communication. Aside from that, Jephrifs have no castes, no professions, nothing – their society consists solely of warriors, builders and beast tamers, with those of them who are off-duty spending all of their time on idle banter amongst themselves. No one is more important than another, save for the leader, and no one disobeys any orders.

The recent events
Having descended from the skies, Jephrifs seek only to deliver challenge and entertainment to themselves and other races by means of warfare.

Roost warfare: "Precision elimination incineration"
The Roost troops are mostly quick and many of them can fly. Thus, they try to shut down the enemy force by eliminating the key units, which usually are flimsy and protected by the fact they keep sitting in the back row. After that is done, they can keep running away from the slower enemies, often slower than they usually would be, and kill them off while they’re helpless.

*Strengths: Powerful offensive and speed advantage, many units can debuff, obstacles don’t matter much
*Weaknesses: No shooters in the usual sense of the word, rather fragile if ever hit
*Racial ability: Unburden – with every square moved, Roost units have a chance to dispel negative effects on themselves. Similarly, enemy units can lose their own buffs by moving around with them.



The origin of Sparks isn’t clear. After many mass debates, Jephrifs settled on the explanation they come from necromantic failures – when a Ghost would be created but the necromancer lacks in skill, bits of the soul are broken off and float up, already bound to this world with dark energy but without enough sentience to e noticed or serve the animator. Up in the skies, they wander and gather up energy. Then, Jephrifs meet them and using their ability to communicate, convince them to serve in military, what Sparks do without a question, their ghostly instincts knowing only servitude.
Either way, they’re little angry balls of plasma.

Flying (Basic & Upgrade): Much like Ghosts they might be derived from, Sparks are nearly massless and can move freely in all directions. This lets them avoid any obstacle.
Speed of Lightning(Basic & Upgrade): Sparks are thought by other races to be spirits of pure lightning, and they attack with blinding speed. An appropriate old saying best explains their power: "Parrying the attack of a Spark is like trying to pin your shadow to the wall." Try it! It's not an easy matter. The fact they’re barely material doesn’t help, either.
Fighting a Zap(Basic & Upgrade): Being small bits of Ghosts (or not), Sparks are equally as hard to hit as them, if not harder – being smaller and brighter. And when hit in melee combat, they have a prime occasion to hurt the enemy – it’s the contact with them that causes shock and pain, after all. Their composition is a mix of undead and elemental, what gives them a large mix of immunities.
Big Shock (Upgrade): Much like Sparks, Ball Lightnings attack by channelling themselves through the bodies of enemies. However, their power is high enough that the process, if it leaves the enemy alive at all, generally tends to leave him in not the best state of a shivering wreck, muscles locked in a spasm. And the brightness! Ball Lightnings glow nearly as much as a miniature sun. Attacked enemies have a hard time getting themselves to do a thing.
Unstable (Upgrade): The abundance of energy a Ball Lightning consists of is somewhat hard for the spirit shard to control. When one of such would be dispelled, the energy tends to be released everywhere and lightning arcs to all nearby targets, not differing between friend or foe.


For such a long time, Jephrifs were mentioned, but what are they? Well... they are crystalline beings. Their shapes are those of large jewels, deltoid in cross-section, with two long tentacles extending from their upper points and five somewhat shorter ones extending from their lower points. They are composed of ice, feed on water, dust and magic, and have growing diamond cores in their centres, composed of pure carbon found in dust. They spend their lives drifting in the skies, only stopping to converse with each other, forming a community of philosophers. Or at least that was the case until not long ago.
Stranglers are the basic military profession of a Jephrif. As the name suggests, they fight in melee combat, using their numerous tentacles usually to asphyxiate their enemies.

Ice (Basic & Upgrade): Surprisingly enough, the ability to communicate is sometimes more of a curse than a blessing – enemy mages have no problems with casting mind spells on them. Aside from that, they have all the properties of a water elemental due to their composition – no blood, no organs, and absolutely immune to any other effects of ice or Water magic.
Hovering (Basic & Upgrade): Changing altitude is a rather tough challenge for those creatures. They never touch the ground during the battle unless they’re attacking or being attacked, ignoring any hazards on it, and while they can bypass obstacles, it takes them more movement points than usual. High walls are impassable barriers.
Choking (Basic & Upgrade): The tentacles of a Jephrif can deal structural damage to anything, even if not in the most effective of manners. When the target is organic, though, they become suddenly much more dangerous, as the tentacles are perfect for denying the enemies air or piercing vital organs when all else fails. If engaged in a prolonged fight, Stranglers can adjust their grip on the situation enough to kill off enemies with extreme ease, working calmly and with surgical precision – something impossible during a first strike.
Air Anchor(Upgrade): Unlike Stranglers, Strangers focus more on lashing and piercing moves with their tentacles, having found out that constricting is a low-damage method. They however, still use constricting for one purpose – with their two upper tentacles, they can effectively entangle enemies in combat, not letting them move until they let go, while retaining five tentacles for attacking.
Weird (Upgrade): Magic is the lifeforce of Jephrifs, building up as their bodies get stronger. Thus, even such physical fighters as Stranglers develop some magical ability, and that’s what gave their advanced unit their name. Stranger Jephrifs use magic to project in their crystalline bodies unthinkable horrors, precisely researched by years of conversation, which induce fear in their enemies. However, those can’t run away, bound by tentacles, and are forced to watch, their minds being carved with deep scars. Effects range from depression, through insanity, to death by stroke.


Vile Floaters are peculiar, balloon-like, organic creatures, storing a noxious gas inside their bodies. They can release the high-pressure gas through various pores of their bodies, letting them propel themselves around and spread poison everywhere. Their existence is a testament to their magical powers, as such bizarre beings couldn’t exist otherwise. That’s also how they attack – their gas is magically replenished, and they can manipulate it into various forms, even solid ones.

Hovering (Basic & Upgrade): Changing altitude is a rather tough challenge for those creatures. They never touch the ground during the battle unless they’re attacking or being attacked, ignoring any hazards on it, and while they can bypass obstacles, it takes them more movement points than usual. High walls are impassable barriers.
Noxious (Basic & Upgrade): Vile Floaters attack by forming their gas into a blade, then cutting an enemy with it. The blade dissolves afterwards, forming a burst of gas, which is composed of powerful toxins which work when inhaled. Even larger bursts of gas are released when the enemies cut Floaters apart or destroy them otherwise. Gas clouds don’t choose their targets – anyone close enough is affected, friend or foe.
Deadly Dust (Upgrade): Smoke Devils, as their name doesn’t suggest, are much larger, and their gas isn’t pure gas any longer – instead, it’s a mixture containing small bits of soot and sand. The differences include more power, mostly – when a Smoke Devil is ruptured, its smoke is flung in all directions, and its higher volume forms a larger cloud. Additionally, the soot turns into shot, embedding itself deep in the enemies. The smoke isn’t just a toxin – it also irritates eyes and promotes coughing. It also makes better gas blades. Luckily, it isn’t flammable.



The less common military profession of a Jephrif is the Blazer, a magic user. Surprisingly enough, despite their worship of Sylath, Blazers use light-themed magic, possibly due to their prismatic bodies.

Ice (Basic & Upgrade): Surprisingly enough, the ability to communicate is sometimes more of a curse than a blessing – enemy mages have no problems with casting mind spells on them. Aside from that, they have all the properties of a water elemental due to their composition – no blood, no organs, and absolutely immune to any other effects of ice or Water magic.
Hovering (Basic & Upgrade): Changing altitude is a rather tough challenge for those creatures. They never touch the ground during the battle unless they’re attacking or being attacked, ignoring any hazards on it, and while they can bypass obstacles, it takes them more movement points than usual. High walls are impassable barriers.
Caster (Basic & Upgrade): As it has been mentioned, Jephrif Blazers can use various spells related to light – dazing the enemies with bursts of colours or just focusing large rays of light to deal damage. Nightwizards use a different skillset, and it’s a vast one – they can drain lifeforce and mana from other beings to replenish their own mana, use powerful spells of fire, ice and lightning, and a single most powerful spell of no element.


Tales told in the cities of Nagas, Sanctuaries, sometimes speak of the tendency of objects to come to life as their age hits one hundred years. Those tales are only the truth, as some artists found out themselves – the tapestries they’ve woven one day just disappeared, along with old bedsheets of humans and all other sentient races. Even shirts shared that fate – once thrown away, they eventually joined the ranks of countless fabric-based items floating around in the skies, which gained immense cosmic powers by a century of meditation.
Jephrifs? Jephrifs. They’ve found them and accepted them as members of their society. With a century of wisdom on their beings, Textiles were proper partners for discussion, and with a century of storing up magical power, they are capable soldiers.

Hovering (Basic): Changing altitude is a rather tough challenge for those creatures. They never touch the ground during the battle unless they’re attacking or being attacked, ignoring any hazards on it, and while they can bypass obstacles, it takes them more movement points than usual. High walls are impassable barriers.
Unclassifiable (Basic & Upgrade): Are Textiles alive? Mechanical, maybe, seeing as they’re made of dead matter but move... no. They’re made of animal or plant-derived materials, too. Undead, ghost bound to an item? No... probably. Elemental? Cloth elemental? Does such a thing even exist? Oh, sod this. No one knows what to put down Textiles as, and the question blocks the mind of anyone trying to cast a mind spell on them. They don’t breathe, bleed, or have organs either, making them immune to related effects like poison.
Power of Cloth (Basic & Upgrade): Much like the martial artists of Sanctuaries, Textiles gain understanding of their bodies through meditation. After a hundred years, they have such absolute control of them that they can fly horizontally really quickly and stiffen themselves into an unbreakable object for a short time. That’s how they attack – their torn edges form serrated blades when stiff, and are run into the enemy. Karakasae perform in a similar way, although they prefer shaping themselves like lances, and hit like the Sun Riders themselves – why, their ferrules are even sharpened. Additionally, the ability to stiffen is useful defensively – unless caught off-guard, a Textile can just harden and survive any amount of punishment – it’s about as futile as trying to break a boulder with a punch... while being a Goblin.
Flying (Upgrade): As they are upgraded, Textiles are fashioned into the shape of a parasol. That change of form lets them catch updrafts much better, especially since their cosmic powers of hundred years of meditation are capable of causing them, and they have extra experience. Karakasae are thus capable of controlled flight.
Surprise (Upgrade): The Karakasae might be flat out the most powerful and fearsome beings ever seen on Ashan. This comes from their ability to bend minds and even reality itself. When they want to, they are fully capable of surprising their target, even being in plain sight all the time. The surprised enemies can’t defend properly or retaliate against a strike.


Those great avian creatures are unlike any other bird found by sentient races so far. They have long necks, long, slender beaks, are brown and white in coloration, and are gigantic overall. Many cows have disappeared off the face of Ashan due to their assaults, but usually, they just devour smaller birds whole. They also have the surprising ability to hover in midair by beating their wings really fast, what is one feat no other bird of that size can accomplish, and it is attributed to magic, much like all other mysterious phenomena. Following simple animal instincts, they can be tamed by any race that has some food to share with it, but due to their tendencies to stay airborne, only Jephrifs can do it practically.

Both Huntingbirds and Zizlings are large creatures.
Flying(Basic): Huntingbirds are capable of flight, but amazingly enough, after they turn into Zizlings, the ability is strangely hampered. Zizlings need a long runway and some starting height to achieve flight, being way too large to just fly up from where they stand. As such, in combat, they’re limited to walking, but how.
Long Attack (Basic): In combat, the technique Huntingbirds use is stabbing with their beak, which has just the shape to make such an attack efficient and damaging. The joined length of their necks and beaks, as well as their swift movements, let them hit enemies from a distance – and the enemy can’t retaliate at what isn’t there.
Wing Bash(Upgrade): Zizlings are not even similar to Huntingbirds in looks, having much shorter necks, beaks, and being too bulky to take off from a standstill. They do, however, have great wings, spanning wider than a house. Those wings, fitted with powerful muscles that let them bring a Zizling up with a simple flap against the air, are used in combat to flap against enemies. The force is tremendous, and enemies are generally flung away stunned and with crushed bones when hit.
Hot (Upgrade): One good way to tell you’re close to a Zizling is listening. They constantly give off a sound not unlike of that of oil on a frying pan. The reason of such is their body temperature, and the sound is made indeed by heated tallow – skin of many living beings releases sebum from many glands, Zizlings being no exception. In their case, however, the sebum is quickly vaporized, as their skin and flesh is constantly heated – the amounts of energy they spent as Huntingbirds to flap their wings are devoted mostly to heating their bodies. Worst of all, their temperature is so high that their blood actually explosively boils when allowed out of the veins, where it flows under high pressure. Zizling blood is a potent poison for humans, demons and nagas alike, and the fact it spouts like steam from a punctured pipe until a clot is formed doesn’t help. Enemy soldiers attacking usually breathe in blood vapors shortly after sticking their weapons into Zizlings.



Those magnificent green creatures are much like Jephrifs in many aspects. They live in the skies, they feed on water and magic. However, they do something strange with their water... where they pass, air smells like a lightning has just hit the place, and the Fusion Serpents have much more energy than one could possibly imagine. They are intelligent, but amazingly, not very mature, and serve Jephrifs in exchange for entertainment.

Both Fusion Serpents and Eternal Flyers are large creatures.
Unsettleable Flyer (Basic & Upgrade): Fusion Serpents are the epitome of a flying creature – their insanely long lives are spent on flying and flying alone. They cannot be stopped from flying in any way, nor can their movement be ever slowed down or restricted.
No Earth (Basic & Upgrade): When the Dragon Gods conversed was the first time Sylanna has ever heard of the Fusion Serpents. They have never landed on the surface of Ashan, and as such, she is unable to detect them in any way, as they’re out of her kingdom, her jurisdiction. All Earth magic or damage is associated with Sylanna and is similarly unable to affect Fusion Serpents in any way. Not even their corpses ever land – when a Fusion Serpent dies, its extreme internal energy is released, instantly vaporizing the corpse and returning it to the skies.
Flare Breath (Basic & Upgrade): The energy of the Fusion Serpent is so great, it is used for the offensive purpose instead of biting. Those great creatures breathe out a stream of what is apparently blindingly white energy. Mages didn’t have much time to research it, but they could tell the breath’s composition surpasses elements, being similar to the energy of the Sun, yet different from it.
Acrobatics (Upgrade): The only thing the Fusion Serpents can improve about themselves is technique, and that is what they perfect to advance to the ranks of Eternal Flyers. With insane speed and often using their unclear breath weapon, they are capable of executing a wide range of manoeuvres on the battlefield, all of them as beautiful as they are deadly for the targeted.




Following the Jephrif philosophy of combat being an enjoyable game of wits, Strategists manage their armies with a cold glare and an iron hand, focusing themselves on victory. Their ruthlessness is somewhat known, and caused by the desire of self-improvement. Strategists see their units as resources, trying to keep them in an operational status – the next rounds or battles will be played with the same pieces.

Type: Might
Reputation: Neutral
Neutral Ability: Distracting Strike
Hero attacks lower the enemy’s initiative for a turn and waste away their retaliation.



Managers are the masters of strategy – under their command; it can be safely assumed that everything that happens is fully planned down to the tiniest step. Their units trust them with their lives, knowing that they wouldn’t make a mistake even if their lives depended on it. Most skirmishes fought by Managers end without a single casualty on the allied side, and for them, it’s a reward in itself – Managers hate unnecessary bloodshed.

Type: Might
Reputation: Tears
Advanced Ability: Pylon
The hero sets a pylon on the battlefield. Enemies passing by it are attacked by the hero, and their movement is stopped. Allies passing by gain a might power bonus for a few turns. The pylon has just one structural point, not that I have an idea what do they do yet.
Ultimate Ability:  Exploit
Friendly units deal extra damage to enemies that can’t retaliate. Passive.



Some Strategists prefer the highly offensive approach to fighting, epitomizing their ideals of slaughtering the enemy force before it has a chance of scream. They become Dragoons – masters of attacking from the skies.

Type: Might
Reputation: Blood
Advanced Ability: Palidor’s Call
Target friendly stack gains the ability to execute a Diving Assault for a few turns.
Ultimate Ability: Flash Jump
Target friendly stack gains the ability to use Leap, gains +14 to Movement, an even larger bonus to Initiative, and gains No Enemy Retaliation and Flying – just for one turn, though.



Especially powerful or adventurous Blazers try their hand at leading armies, becoming Blitzers. With the position comes a new school of magic, a traditional one – Blitzers don’t forget their studies of Light, but have to take up the studies of Air, and dabble in the primordial arts as well. Not many of them succeed and go back to being Blazers, but those who do are revered as heroes and allowed to serve the leader’s purposes.

Type: Magic
Reputation: Neutral
Neutral Ability: Rush
Target friendly creature’s next turn is hastened considerably.



The domain of air as empty space is the one Spacebenders pursue the most. Their studies of magic let them influence the very dimensions and distance. Of course, they remain powerful mages in their general spheres as well – they’ve learned to value the importance of filling the space with objects during the countless years of drifting from one group of Jephrifs to another, and use their abilities to never be alone again.

Type: Magic
Reputation: Tears
Advanced Ability: Far Away Now
Three target enemy stacks always get a distance penalty when shooting (if they can) and spend double the movement points to move around. Lasts about two turns.
Ultimate Ability: Fantasy Heaven
Target friendly stack is completely immune to everything until the end of its next turn, but is fully operational in combat. This ability can only be used twice per battle, plus two times when a friendly stack dies, but only up to a grand total of six times.


Awe Inspirer

Munchkins of the Blitzers, Awe Inspirers seek only to possess ultimate cosmic powers. They reluctantly serve the leader to be able to travel to find possible treasures that could grant them even higher amounts of power. In battle, they enthusiastically show off, riddling the battlefield with huge explosions and trying their best to obliterate the enemy, while recommending their units to stay back and enjoy, lest they be caught up.

Type: Magic
Reputation: Blood
Advanced Ability: Bigger Thunder
Target enemy stack is dealt EXTREME Air damage and is stunned. Nearby enemy stacks might be blinded, stunned as well, or develop fear.
Ultimate Ability: Disastalamitaclysmastrophe
A huge ass-meteor falls onto a chosen 4x4 zone of the battlefield. Everything under it is crushed for massive physical damage, then all non-Roost or non-friendly two squares from the landing site (a total of an 8x8 zone by now) take some Air damage and are pushed outside of it, THEN all enemies take a large morale penalty from watching such a happening unfold before their very eyes, knowing it was caused at the Awe Inspirer’s whim.

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Famous Hero
Lord of Image Spam
posted May 16, 2011 02:31 AM

Why is the upgrade for the core Jef-thing named Stranger?

Also, can the upgraded bird fly?

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Known Hero
Green eyed monster
posted May 16, 2011 05:32 AM

Why is the upgrade for the core Jef-thing named Stranger?

Also, can the upgraded bird fly?

It's all there!

Weird (Upgrade): Magic is the lifeforce of Jephrifs, building up as their bodies get stronger. Thus, even such physical fighters as Stranglers develop some magical ability, and that’s what gave their advanced unit their name. Stranger Jephrifs use magic to project in their crystalline bodies unthinkable horrors, precisely researched by years of conversation, which induce fear in their enemies.

Flying(Basic): Huntingbirds are capable of flight, but amazingly enough, after they turn into Zizlings, the ability is strangely hampered. Zizlings need a long runway and some starting height to achieve flight, being way too large to just fly up from where they stand. As such, in combat, they’re limited to walking, but how.

Or, in other words:
-because they exhibit a higher measure of strangeness compared to their basic unit
-no. Not that it's that much of a loss, they gain a lot of power as the trade-off, and are the odd unit out - much like wyverns in H5 had no Blood Rage

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Undefeatable Hero
Altar Dweller
posted May 18, 2011 12:19 AM

This is great in it's creativeness!

Sometimes...it's a bit very creative maybe. ...I mean - textiles. They ARE very intriguing somehow, but I still cannot imagine textile being a fearsome battle creature.^^

floaters and Zizlings are probably my favourtite creatures in this - very nice!
I also liek the "hovering" ability! may I add it (and maybe others by you) to the ability list?
ICTC announced

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Known Hero
Green eyed monster
posted July 13, 2011 09:40 PM
Edited by Minnakht at 21:48, 17 Jul 2011.


”The useless, the hated – we all deserve places to stay.”

Cows. Chickens. Swine. Sheep. They all are useful to humans. Mighty griffons serve in their armies, horses and oxen are used for transportation. Lions, too, are universally revered. This is the bright side of the beasts of this world. But there is another.
In its foolishness, every race seeks to preserve only what it can exploit. The rest doesn’t matter to them, and would be better off dead. Some of those possible, though, are someone to judge on their own. Not every beast is dumb or brutish – griffins themselves are a prime example. So, in a mockery of the human and other cities, some of the beasts chose to establish their own settlements, welcoming all the oppressed species. Those are the Preserves. Their philosophy is meant to be a counter to the hate, too, so they take in the exiles of elves, humans, orcs, anyone – as long as they accept being part of their societies.
Most of the denizens of Preserves used to be part of Sylvan cities, where they only suffered from being occasionally hunted and not having any rights, not even having a military use, unlike the noble unicorns, sprites and treants.

In a nutshell: Animals for Ethical Treatment of Animals, Abominations, and other Beings of Nature.

Inspiration: Too many to count

Associated Colours: Deep green and orange
Symbols: The head of an owl
Worship: They are worshippers of Sylanna, just like Elves – their cultures are fairly close as well.
Core Philosophy: ”All species have rights to live, and the so-called sentient races keep breaching that right, seeking to slaughter us all off so only their slaves remain. That is unforgivable."
Country / Kingdom: Some parts of Irollan – in fact, the deepest parts of it, where not even Elves settle.
Capital City: The original names of cities aren’t really pronounceable for the races that can speak. When translated to the common language, the name of the Preserve capital is “Realhaven”, mocking the human-filled “Havens”.

Worship: Again, the culture of Preserves is mostly similar to that of the Sylvan towns. Sylanna is the dragon worshipped, in the same aspect.

Social Organization: Every creature does what it can do best. The professions include mostly builders and farmers. Beasts of Preserves respect the cows’ and other domesticated animals’ choice to be lazy beings fit only to be eaten, and raise them for meat. The wisest individuals become rulers, administrators and advisors, and surprisingly enough, elves take those spots somewhat often.

Architecture: There isn’t much architecture in the Preserves. Instead of buildings, there are zones – places are marked simply by low fences instead of full walls, and have no roofs. Only a few select buildings do, but the common residential areas are simply areas. The canopy of trees shields places from rainfall or the sun, and fur or such provides necessary insulation. The use of underground areas is also common. The most prominent buildings of the Preserves are the city walls, usually composed of trunks of great trees and scented to mark the territory.

Magic: Many species of Preserve creatures can use magic – there isn’t much of a step from sentience to having magical powers. They focus on blessings and healing, magic useful in everyday life as well – for them, magic used solely to destroy or hinder is abominable and good only for combat, what is outright forbidden for commoners and frowned upon but used by heroes.

Preserve Warfare: "Unstoppable force of nature"

Preserve units are the best of the mishmash of beasts that have gathered to live in them. Those are naturally superior to humans and often have an innate magical ability. There’s not much cohesion in the ranks – every unit does what it can do best, and all of them keep growing into more powerful killing machines.

* Strengths: Powerful units with plentiful magic, not lacking in speed
* Weaknesses: Limited distance attack options
* Racial Ability: Omnisympathy – Once per day, a call can be emitted that’ll try to bring out creatures from the nearby terrain. They’ll fight on the caller’s side during the battle and the remainder will usually flee afterwards, but it is subject to the usual diplomacy/joining mechanics. Preserve creatures will always be called in very small amounts, most of the creatures will however belong to the faction usually occupying the terrain or be neutral.


Bovistriges are a caste of priests in society of Preserves. The head of an owl is widely known as a symbol of wisdom, and every Bovistrix bears one, as well as an owl’s wings – on top of the body of a normal dairy cow, bulky and grotesque in its mundane looks. Those beasts share their origins with the much more impressive but less intelligent griffins. While they’re less adept flyers, they’re healers and spellcasters, abilities which a griffin lacks – and a drop kick turns hooves into blunt weapons not much worse than claws or talons.

Both are large creatures.
Cleric (Basic & Upgrade): Being priests of Preserves, Bovistriges have access to the usual magical repertoire of a priest. They can heal their allies with magic and strengthen them. The honour rules of magic use forbid Bovistriges from using magic to smite their enemies, though – damaging uses of magic do not comply with Preserve ideals.
Flyer (Basic & Upgrade): The wings of an owl every Bovistrix possesses grant them flying ability, leading to amusing responses from peasants of the Holy Empire whenever one is seen.  
Bull Rush (Upgrade): Tauristriges possess the bravery and size of a bison or a similar being. With that comes the tendency to perform the foolhardy manoeuvre of any self-respecting bull – just a simple charge forth. Tauristriges charge from the skies, delivering a full-body blow with great speed and crushing force.

Lesser cousins of treants, those beings are humanoid forms of bushes, weeds and vines, all together. Those are considered weeds even by Preserve societies and disliked for their tendencies to reproduce uncontrollably, but the strict tolerance policy keeps them from being hurt. They have few uses within communities, so their ever-growing numbers are constantly sent to the military, where they act as expendable units. Bunchthorns use spears in combat, with their weapons being former parts of their own bodies – a long vine with a flat end, wholly turned into hard wood, and then broken off the rest of oneself. The spears are living beings, technically offspring of their creators.  

Weed (Basic & Upgrade): Fighting Bunchthorns is a tough, ungrateful job, and “weeding out” gains a literal meaning in the process. The mind of a Bunchthorn is decentralized, and has human intelligence when intact. After losing a limb or two, the Bunchthorn keeps standing and starts being a dumb fighting machine, not feeling pain or fear, and the lost limbs also keep on living, having just enough intellect to instinctually latch onto enemies with thorny vines they are while deploying roots into the ground. Enemies end up being entangled by dozens of separated body parts, covered in cuts and scrapes, unable to move away.
Taproot (Basic & Upgrade): Bunchthorns have roots on their feet, using them to drain moisture from soil while constantly absorbing light to grow, or, more often in battle, regrow. When told to defend, Bunchthorns quickly generate a longer root to drain more moisture and flourish, regenerating at a much faster rate. The enemies most often can’t really kill a Bunchthorn, considering one dead when it’s chopped into flailing pieces. When defending, Bunchthorns put their dead together like jigsaw puzzles, and they often manage to grow back together, at which point they are handed their spears back and told to rejoin the ranks. Luckily, a Bunchthorn stops growing once it reaches a certain size, rejecting additional transplants (no pun intended) – otherwise, they would become much more powerful monsters.
Damp (Upgrade): The preferred habitat of a Grimeling is a swamp or a similar area – foggy, with many pools of water. Their bodies are imbued with water, making them seem slimy and waterlogged. Both fire and water damage is much less effective against them, however. They also slip out of restraints, being slimy and capable of just tearing body parts off to reattach them later.
Poison (Upgrade): When being advanced to the position of a Grimeling, a Bunchthorn has to grow a new spear. An incredibly poisonous vine is transplanted onto the Bunchthorn, which he then forms into his weapon and breaks off. Properly made spears can be told by their parents to leak poison from their blades in battle, especially when stabbed into an enemy. The poison is a paralyzing one, eventually causing death by suffocation to smaller enemies.

Mystical, graceful beings, Vulpims are foxlike beings, usually cyan or a different vivid colour, which shows their magical nature. They have two tails, too, but the most noticed part is a single large gemstone located over a Vulpim’s eyes, which is embedded into the skull. The gemstone is usually a sapphire, much larger than most of those found by mining, and the source of a Vulpim’s power. Because of this, they’re relentlessly hunted by just about any other race, their bodies valuable to mages, their gems valuable to just about everyone. Preserves are the only places where Vulpims can find refuge, and they often volunteer to serve in the army in pursuit of vengeance on the hunters.

Magic Weapon (Basic & Upgrade): Vulpims create blades of pure magic to fight, which they use with great finesse, even if not so much strength. Those weapons are no match for the usual, mundane ones, made of metal, and often cleave right through armour. Sadly, magical defences can stop them, unlike the mundane kind.
Gem Change (Upgrade): At any time, a Carbune can just swap the colour of its gemstone, changing its entire identity. The gemstone colour defines its element, which the Carbune starts being very resistant to, and also the element of the magical blade. All known elements are accessible to a Carbune. They also have seven tails, five more than a Vulpim. The entire process is instant and performable even while running to attack.
Reach (Upgrade): Another technique Carbunes learn is strengthening the bond with the magic blade, letting it operate at higher distances. Normally, the Vulpim has to keep his blade close, or it dissolves due to insufficient focus – a Carbune can stand quite far away from his blade, yet still operate it flawlessly. This lets them attack over terrain obstacles and from enough distance to not be counter-attacked by the enemy.


Tralthas were first created in a relatively small city of wizards, who were attempting to improve their usual elephant steeds. Tralthas were the result – elephants with a shorter gestation time, superior intelligence, and an extra pair of arms above their front legs. Needless to say, the experiment was a failure – Tralthas were not accepted amongst the ranks of other elephants, being perceived as abominations, and escaped servitude shortly after, their strength being enough to break out of the wizards’ security. Eventually, they found a Preserve, where they quickly started being regarded as heroes, offering a pair of arms and immense strength each – both qualities being sought after in the beast society.  Not many Tralthas choose the military career, having a lot of work either way, but when they do, they are once again highly renowned, their strength letting them hurl boulders into enemy ranks with ease.

Both are large creatures.
Shooter (Basic & Upgrade): Tralthas use their big, mitten-handed arms to hurl boulders at enemies. The boulders are thrown with great force and very large, causing considerable damage and chaos to enemies.
Thick Hide (Upgrade): Hudlars have incredibly durable skin, thick enough to embed a sword in without the Hudlar even noticing – if you even manage to stab the sword in in the first place. Entire armies of weak enemies have problems with defeating those monsters, as their weak attacks barely have any effect.
Tusks (Upgrade): Hudlars also have another thing Tralthas lack. The magical experiment leading to their creation has left them tuskless, something the wizards accepted as a side effect, as it made Tralthas less dangerous. Hudlars regain tusks during enhancement, becoming properly dangerous even in close combat. Their arms are not good for punching, usually, being highly padded and not having much reach – that’s why Hudlars rely on their tusks when turning enemies into gory mess up close, when hurling boulders to squash them flat is not an option.

Those huge tortoises are also a hunted species that seeks refuge in Preserves. Their tough shells with many long, rugged spikes are commonly used as tower shields by just about any being that can lift one, most often major demons and dwarven thanes, and shell pieces are used in decoration as well. Castelids have a symbiotic relationship with bees, which set up hives in said spiked shells, thus gaining a mobile base while the tortoise gains additional protection. The species as a whole is somewhat rare, but members of it often serve in Preserve military, not having much of an use otherwise. Castelids are not as slow as their looks would suggest.

Both are large creatures.
Wasp Swarm (Basic & Upgrade): The bees living on the tortoise are not controlled by it, or anyone else for that matter – only together they’re a Castelid, but only the tortoise takes orders. The bees just fly out and into their hive, randomly picking enemy targets to attack. Their swarms not only damage the enemy with stings, but also make them unable to act as buzzing and black clouds cut off access to orders. The bees inspired a spell of the same name.
Salve Honey (Basic): Other bees living in hives as Castelid members use their produce to aid allies in combat. The honey produced by them isn’t made solely of pollen – herbs are added to it as well, not to mention blood of combatants. The result is a highly chaotic, thick liquid with healing powers, restoring energy and mending living creatures. Honey is shipped by an auxiliary swarm, targeting allied units. Sadly, it can’t revive dead allies.
Revive (Upgrade): ...that is, until Castelids, including bees, are improved with magic of Preserve enchanters, becoming Chealvears. Enchanted salve honey can restore life to freshly dead allies, and has a chance of working on bodies of allies recovered after a battle.
Spikes (Upgrade): The shell of a Chealvear has additional spikes along the rim – long, durable, and sharpened, more similar to horizontally-set sword blades than anything. In battle, a Chealvear can simply rotate in place, which it can do fairly quickly, to slice up anything standing close. The manoeuvre is easy enough for the Chealvear to repeat whenever it’s attacked, regardless of the amount of attackers.

Technically undead, Limeserpents are beings composed of thousands of natural zombies. Tiny spirits of small, shelled beings from ages gone by meld together as a result of increased magical field of the world, their bodies turned to sedimentary stone also meld together to form a single being. As their name suggests, the chosen form of the collective mind is a large snake, composed of chalk or limestone the mind’s bodies have turned into over ages. Having meditated underground for such unbearably long time, Limeserpents possess great power.

Small creatures. Only a part is visible over ground – the head and about two metres of the body, sticking upright from the ground.
Phasing (Basic & Upgrade): For earth, Limeserpents are ghosts – parts animated by a lingering sentiment, undead and white. Thus, despite being pretty solid and rocky, they can fly through soil and stone effortlessly. The ability is mostly used to move around the battlefield, flying under obstacles and units alike. Earth can’t harm them either, flying through them much like a sword flies through a more common ghost.
Technically Undead (Basic & Upgrade): Necromancers asked for their opinion on the matter claim that limestone could technically be seen as animal remains, and thus grave matter, while noting the ghostly properties of a Limeserpent. The other parts are present as well – a mind not affected by spells or morale, a body immune to fatigue, and vulnerability to being smitten by holy priests. Preserve creatures, however, do not feel that Limeserpents are undead, and have no qualms about fighting alongside them.
Surprise Attack (Basic & Upgrade): Limeserpents phase through earth without a single hiss or other sound. No one can see, hear or feel them coming, there is not even a single tremor. When executed properly, their attacks shock enemies, not letting them fight back and making them inept at defending themselves. Improper execution involves attacking enemies which can see Limeserpents stationed close to them, which lets said enemies prepare for the attack.
Forged In Fire (Upgrade): Marblisks gain their form and abilities by being exposed to great heat and pressure of depths underground, metamorphosing their limestone into, well, marble. Having survived such heat, they are highly resistant to fire, and their insides remain searing hot, including the fangs – seeing as Marblisks attack by biting, said heat adds extra hazard to their attacks.
Petrifying Gaze (Upgrade): Deep underground, the body of a Marblisk hardens to form solid stone. The dormant magic built up by ages of being inert rock, present in every Limeserpent, takes that property and lets a Marblisk use it as a weapon. Unfortunate beings who gaze into their eyes, usually made of gemstones found deep underground and encompassed into a Marblisk, also harden into solid stone, turning into pretty statues.


A mystery hailing from the deepest parts of Irollan, Time-Lost Abominations are feared and driven away by elves whenever they’re met. The Preserve societies were the first to make contact with them. Time-Lost Abominations are elves themselves, hailing from before recorded history. A magical cataclysm tore their grand city out of Ashan entirely, sealing them away in another world. As a consequence, every member of their own society is taught druidic knowledge – to preserve it. On the nights of new moon, groups of those ancient elves disappear from the lost city, never to return, so their efforts are aimed at making sure the randomly picked are never the ones in possession of unique knowledge. As it turns out, the disappearances actually transfer ancient elves back to Ashan, trapping them in forms of Time-Lost Abominations in the process – wild beasts similar to everything and nothing, chimeras composed of parts of most ferocious beasts from those prehistoric times. Not having any other purpose in this world, the few Time-Lost Abominations that come to Ashan serve in Preserve armies.

Is a large creature, but becomes small when upgraded.
Aqualung (Basic): The exact origins of the ability are unknown, but are said to hail from the fact the Time-Lost Abomination is a chimera. Either way, they can breathe out immense amounts of water, dealing heavy damage to whoever stands in their way.
Flight(Basic): Time-Lost Abominations do possess perfectly usable, leathery wings, and can use them to move around the battlefield quickly.
Mending (Basic): The warped, highly magical form of a Time-Lost Abomination is enchanted, or rather cursed, to come back should the form be changed. Luckily, the curse causes wounded Time-Lost Abominations to turn into unharmed ones over time, as that is a change of form in its eyes. Even dead ones are eventually affected if there are other Abominations nearby, supplying the corpse with cursed magic.
Shift Back(Upgrade): The curse is broken when Preserve enchanters work enough on a Time-Lost Abomination, and it’s allowed to turn back into its original, elven form. However, the Druids retain their ability to change form, and can go back to the strong, beastly one should a need arise, although they do so with disdain. The change locks their druidic abilities, which require an elven body to be performed, but can be reversed by them at will.
Druid (Upgrade): And those abilities are a great boon to any army. The druidic magic can bolster entire armies, all at once, and every spell comes with a slight additional healing spell. Ancient Druids can ward off enemy curses should it be needed, boost the speed of their allies or their combat ability with spells. The spells’ effects stay for quite a while, so eventually, the army can be affected by all of them, becoming an incredible force.
Shooter (Upgrade): Lastly, Ancient Druids possess the one ability even modern druids possess – conjuration of a simple bolt of energy to be shot at enemies. The ability was frowned upon by Preserve councils, but eventually, due to not costing any real mana, was stated to not be magical enough to be a breach of Preserve magic use policy. This, or it was just too useful to pass up, or no one wanted to discuss against the user of such an ability.

Supplementing material (badly drawn clay figurine gallery)

Winged cow
Spear-wielding man made of ropes
Armed tuskless elephant
Two-tailed fox with a gem on its forehead and some kinda blade
Snake head thing
Turtle with bee nest on it

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Known Hero
Green eyed monster
posted July 13, 2011 11:01 PM
Edited by Minnakht at 23:11, 13 Jul 2011.

Crypt Spider/ Night Spider:
I don’t really like spiders in laboratoriums, I think other insects (beetles filled with alchemy that shoot like bombard beetles for example) fit more into labaratoriums, I think spiders fit more with outdoor or scary forest/cave factions, or even better with the undead, the abilities are rather simple, you should use ageing poison or slow poison, something with webs aswel.

I see. Well, this setting is an abandoned, wrecked labolatory, with quite a lot of it being a scary cave/ruin with necromancers, that's why I deemed it fitting.
Beetles could be a fitting experiment, but with an abandoned lab, we're looking more at creatures that either evolved themselves under the spilled magic or managed to survive since the experiment. Spiders fit as both, while beetles are bulky and can't really hide, thus leading to their extinction at hands of hungry kobolds.

Kobold Soldier/Kobold Operative:
I like Kobolds, but the ones you use I don’t really like, I HATE the D&D based kobolds, they aren’t lizards!!! In my eyes Kobolds are Gollum (LOTR) kinda creatures with bright shiny yellow eyes that are very into earth-based powers, I do like their explosive ability tho, that does suit them as they bring bad luck to miners.

Oh. Well, in my eyes, Kobolds are expendable comic relief - they even wear armour made of their own skin and have an inflated view of their own intelligence. Kobold is just a name I took, as it is a stock name for small annoying humanoids, but Goblin is already taken.
If I rename them Munchkins, will it work better?
The Operative is also not related to miners, but rather a jab at secret agents and the like - Operatives are meant to look like those characters from Metal Gear.

Grimoire / Destructome:
Lol I admire your creativity, but this is more like an enemy of a Zelda game than a monster in HOMM games, really.    Maybe a mage-like creature with a book flying around him, 8ter by telekinesis or by animation.

But a mage-like creature would be human-like, too, so I just cut the figure and made it just the book. I don't know where to go with this anymore...

Edimmu / Polydimmu:
Lol, this Edimmu is like an enemy in the latest Castlevania game, in that game it is like a sea serpent made from blocks that explode. I’m not a big fan of this version, I really dislike human-like creatures.

I don't know a thing about Castlevania, sadly. Now that I look, it has Mud Men, too, which I used in another faction. Clever it... Well, I based my Edimmu on[URL=http://tinyurl.com/5ww2ngr] this game's Edimmu.[/URL] Mine is not a zombie, but still has a ghost sticking out of it and is a mage. And, frankly, it's one of the two humanoids there are in this faction - surely that can't be too much?

Bloodstain / Blood Vortex:
This is an original creature, I called them Carnage for my own Necropolis town, anyway that is the problem, I think blood-based creatures are more for the undead in homm games,  its abilities are rather strange, I would find other abilities for a blood based creature

Well, this town has... Night Spiders, possibly undead, and... Edimmu, half-undead, and...
The abilities are pretty logical for me: It is blood, it heals when it gets blood, it draws in blood when it finds any, even from inside a body, and it's a liquid blob, so it can flow through openings.

Rolley / Crusher Tank:
No, don’t like such mechanical units, never did, never will, stopped reading after finding out it was mechanical and tank-like

It isn't tank-like. The closest thing I can find to it is [URL=http://finalfantasy.wikia.com/wiki/Atomos#Final_Fantasy_XIII]Fal'cie Atomos.[/URL] Would it help if I made it purely an enchanted boulder?

Gory Mess / Writhing Mass of Primal Chaos:
First of all the names are not good on this unit, at least the second one is way too long for me personally, I prefer creatures with a limit of 2 maybe 3 words in it
The story of the creature got me confused, but this may be due to the fact that I must read through much info at one time
The creature is much too chaotic for me personally, but when I read more into it I probably change my mind.

Sadly, it's true - this creature is about as chaotic as one can get, being formed of dozens of demons and magic, constantly warping and so on. Here, my inspiration was the roguelike ADOM. In it, those are not as powerful, but still. This is what they look like in that game. It's really easier when it's a purple j and the player has to do all the imagining...

As for the names, I had no better idea, I'm sorry. Could you suggest one?

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Tavern Dweller
posted July 14, 2011 06:33 AM

Your Crowdel town is really neat. Only thing I found strange is that in a town with such severe overcrowding that human life becomes less important, you would think there'd be no place for golems. Golems are traditionally (well in my opinion at least) used for tedious labor that isn't suited for humans, or for dangerous jobs in order to preserve human life. It feels like the Horde would resent whoever was building golems, making their potential manual labor worthless.

The problem with a human based town is that there's 7 spots you have to fill but only so many ways a human can ascend. You have better training and equipment, as in the haven. You already have "hoard of hobos" and then skilled laborers. Experimenting would be a way to ascend, but with them worshipping humans, you would think wanting to make a human so inhuman would be blasphemy. Cybernetics wouldn't be much better, but maybe there would be a way for the scientists, given such a large breeding pool, to enhance human genetics or traits. The 7th unit could look human, but be superhuman in strength. Then the towns magical specialists could find ways to infuse the super soldier with life energy from the anima stones. It's regeneration would give it an edge, since even a super human would be weak compared to other 7th units, and giving it the ability to ressurect other fallen humans would give the Horde extra incentive to fight, since they don't really have anything to lose.

It's your town though, of course. I was disapointed that your Preserve town did not have a frog with a flower on it's back. It's upgrade could be called Venosaur.

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Known Hero
Green eyed monster
posted July 14, 2011 01:37 PM
Edited by Minnakht at 13:38, 14 Jul 2011.

Golems are traditionally (well in my opinion at least) used for tedious labor that isn't suited for humans, or for dangerous jobs in order to preserve human life. It feels like the Horde would resent whoever was building golems, making their potential manual labor worthless.

Those jobs you describe... warfare sounds like one! Preserving human life and all that. Those golems are used solely in the army, especially since animastones are somewhat uncommon.
Besides, Ankh-Morpork has golems too, and no one seems to be complaining.

Experimenting would be a way to ascend, but with them worshipping humans, you would think wanting to make a human so inhuman would be blasphemy.

Oh no, it's not blasphemy! That's glorious! Look how powerful we can make a single human, ascending him to be our Champion.
We're really grateful for those Igor chaps... they may be ugly, but they're beastly surgeons.

The 7th unit could look human, but be superhuman in strength.

That's what we did! But looking human was restricting. Those extra eyes for three hundred sixty degrees vision and extra arms for extra weapons were kind of needed to make full use of superhuman strength. The third leg was then needed to let the experiment maintain balance.

Then the towns magical specialists could find ways to infuse the super soldier with life energy from the anima stones.

We tried, but those things only respond to metal, preferably iron. We know there's iron in blood, but just not enough of it, and our tries to make blood more irony failed. It didn't flow through veins so well anymore, you see. So we just cast spells on it over and over until they stuck permanently and entered the experiment's nature. At least it worked.

It's your town though, of course. I was disapointed that your Preserve town did not have a frog with a flower on it's back. It's upgrade could be called Venosaur.

Castelids are close enough, being turtles with beehives on their backs - flat quadruped, heavy object on back, enough of a similarity.
Besides, Roost has Koffing and Rayquaza already, I like my ratio of 0.4 Pokemon per faction overall.

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Tavern Dweller
posted July 14, 2011 01:56 PM

"Oh no, it's not blasphemy! That's glorious!"

Haha. Here's hoping there's not a pile of corpses in your basement. Even as fatal as it is, Warfare is one of the ways that your Horde can add some meaning or value to their lives. Working next to the more powerful golems would diminish their contribution. I suppose you can never have too big of an army though.

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Known Hero
Green eyed monster
posted July 14, 2011 03:22 PM
Edited by Minnakht at 16:17, 17 Jul 2011.

Try watching this first to get into the mood.


Now, back to roleplaying one of the surgeons...

Haha. Here's hoping there's not a pile of corpses in your basement.

Yeah, corpses are not so useful, so we don't keep them around. The survival rate of experiments is quite low, so we don't have to keep corpses around - we just produce them as we go! Usually, we have like twenty ongoing operations at any time, what gives us a pretty good chance to make one experiment. If someone doesn't withstand our surgeries, then we recycle him on a parallel operation. It got much better once we learned about blood groups. Anyway...

They usually turn out bald. Probably all the chemistry does that. Oh well.

Even as fatal as it is, Warfare is one of the ways that your Horde can add some meaning or value to their lives. Working next to the more powerful golems would diminish their contribution.

Ah, no. The Capsizes are not so strong. Still... we realize humans can't do everything, and the metal beings do fill those niches. We outnumber them anyway.
I suppose you can never have too big of an army though.

And that's proper mentality!

'Turtle with bee nest on it' figurine:

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