Erik Schmidt
Erik Schmidt

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Parasite, at the heart of Franka, is a mysterious, dangerous place.

This is the second in a series of posts that provide ideas – bare-bones outlines – for Degenesis campaigns. They’re meant to serve as inspiration so you can use one of them as-is, grab bits from each and add them to your own ideas, or riff off them and come up with something completely new. Before we get started, don’t forget that Chapter 11 in Katharsys is filled with useful campaign-planning info. Also that Group Alignments are found in Artifacts, and I’ve settled on a group size of four mostly because for me as a GM the sweet spot is three to four players.

Here we go.

Defense

Villages keep falling one by one to the Pheromancers, the inhabitants turned to Drones. The lifeblood of Franka is being poisoned, and Resistance leaders are more concerned with politics than defeating the threat. For all their capabilities, the Spitalians spend more time in laboratories than on the attack. Anabaptist leaders worry about the Jehammedans and the Jehammedans worry about the Anabaptists.

But there are some who have the guts to fight for what is right, to come together and defend humanity. After seeing the effects of the Pheromancer’s depredations, a small group of like-minded souls has found common cause. They have each found their way to a small town on the edge of the swamp that is worth defending. If nobody else will do the job, they will.

These zealous souls are bound by the Alignment of Dogma.

  • Resistance – Too many bungling leaders. Too much blood spilled in vain. No, it’s better to train the people to fight for themselves. Let them become a beacon for all to see. (Stats in Clans of the Rhône)
  • Spitalian – The Spitalian order could be spreading word about how to fight the Primer, instead of alienating the people it supposedly wants to save. Science must serve all, not just the Spital.
  • Anabaptist – It was a true Emanation, not a dream – the swamp receding, the earth being purged of the Demiurge’s vile corruption, the people, all the people, kneeling in grateful prayer. To tell the Furor would be folly. Better to find others who share that vision.
  • Jehammedan – How is it that the Iconide brings the word of God, yet he is silent in the face of the extermination of humanity? The cult’s leaders are foolish. Only through saving others can we save ourselves.

Disruption

The Neolybian Raider Maleek controls one of the few swaths of fertile land in the west of Franka. His Scourgers patrol, his hired workers toil at the fields, and his château overlooks it all from atop a hill full of fruit trees and artistically-pruned bushes.

Maleek didn’t get all this without making enemies. He told the Scrappers who had been toiling for months that they’d be able to finish their dig before he moved in, but that was a lie. He told the local clan they’d get a share of his profits. Lie. And by insisting on ceasing all digs in favor of planting crops, he disrupted the scrap trade for the entire region.

Now fate will have its turn with Maleek. His enemies will re-open the most valuable Scrapper tunnels under cover of the night and find the Bygone treasures within. They will poison his crops and pick off his Scourgers one by one.

These daring adventurers are motivated by the Alignment of Revenge.

  • Scrapper – When your family is Scrappers and you’ve been working at the Big Score for years, and suddenly it’s taken from you, and your father drinks himself to death and your mother has lost her will to live, you have no choice but to strike back.
  • Clanner – Work in the fields for this usurper? Lick at his boots? Your clan is a shell of its former self. And worst of all, some of them prefer safety to freedom. Bah, to hell with them, and to hell with Maleek!
  • Apocalyptic – Sure, the Burn trade is lucrative. But you’ve seen too many taken by Burn. It’s not for you. Getting Bygone loot to the right people for the right price – now there’s your calling. It’s time to get the flow going again, and take that Raider down in the process.
  • Chronicler – Regional inhabitants were unaware of the value of the technology being excavated from Survey 1099 sectors 221.932 - 224.830. The Cluster was obtaining the most useful of the excavated items until the Raider Maleek intervened. The technology must be retrieved, and an example must be registered.

Escape

Nobody comes out this far in the swamp unless they are either excavating or depositing. This is to be a deposit. Four bodies will be dropped into the black water. Nobody steals from the Solar Wind Flock and gets away with it. And these four thieving rats each stole from the same Burn stash at different times.

The Solar Wind Flock sees all, and the rats have been rounded up and brought out here in a flatboat. To die.

But in a twist of fate they are given a slim chance to escape. Bonds come loose, or a fight breaks out between the executioners. The captives take their shot at survival! And when it’s all over, they realize they all share knowledge of the Solar Wind Flock’s operations.

Eventually the feared flock will discover they’re alive and will come after them. Their only way out of this will be to stick together and use their combined knowledge to stay one step ahead of their deadly pursuers.

These unfortunate misfits are thrown together by the Alignment of Chance.

  • Apocalyptic – Your own flock must think you dead. Best to play it safe and keep it that way. Eventually you can join another flock or perhaps even leave the Apocalyptics altogether. The world could be your oyster.
  • Clanner – Truth be told, you weren’t stealing Burn so you could sell it. You were just doing it to tweak the Solar Wind Flock, to get bragging rights at home. You’ve never been more than a day’s ride from your village, and now you may never see it again.
  • Scrapper – Yes! Hah hah! Wait ’til Ol’ Lupe hears this one! Stole from the Solar Wind Flock then escaped to tell the tale. That is, is if you’re around long enough to tell it to him.
  • Paler – Secret mission to the surface went terribly wrong. The Aurora will not let you back in, you are sure of it. You must make your way with these strange creatures. Maybe one of them will be strong enough to follow.

Bonus! Check Out Gunsmile’s Overview of Franka

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