As an extension to my predisposition to proxy, my love for both fantasy fiction and the MERCS ruleset has brought me to create what I call CLANS - a fantasy skirmish game using the MERCS rules and factions.
It's not a clever acronym like MERCS (Military and Economic Reconnaissance and Counter Security) but I thought it captured the concept.
It's traditional fantasy fiction, but that's how I like my fantasy. Here's a little background into the fiction - I plan on basing my following fantasy battle reports around the concepts here.
When the Trinity birthed the world and it's races, they looked down on their creations and were happy.
The Conceiver looked down on the lands eagerly, his ideas coming alive, and evolving into the vision of his mind's eye. Life blossomed, and the lands were beautiful.
The Shaper, tired from his constructions, wiped the sweat from his brow and lay down to rest. He smiled as he looked upon the life forms he had moulded and the landscapes he had carved.
The Blesser was weariest of all, having shared his lifeforce with all the creatures and life of the land, that they too may have life. He closed his eyes, and drifted into the Sleep.
Excitedly, the Conceiver watched the the creatures of world they had created. He looked down on the divided realms of the world, and the lands that each of the young races were granted.
The dwarves, stubborn and proud, were granted the depths, to carve out the mountains for their homes.
The elves, arrogant and beautiful, were given the lush forests, teeming with bountiful life to mirror their beauty.
The goblins, cunning and nimble, had the crags of the arid lands in which to quarrell and bicker.
The orcs, barbaric and fierce, were given the vast deserts, endless harsh dunes to fight and war amongst themselves.
While his kin rested, the Conceiver grew bored with the peaceful division that existed between the races.
Finding the Shaper's discarded and failed creations, he cast them down onto the world to join the other prosperous races. Then, taking the Shaper's hammer in his undisciplined hand, he began to reshape the lands...
* * *
Varen closed his ledger and blew out the candle. Another day of scribing left his eyes dry and a terrible pain in his back. He had to constantly remind himself that his efforts would echo through the halls of his Clan for the ages.
It had been half a century since the Shifting had collapsed the greater part of the underground city of Valhallen. Only a fraction of the dwarf population had survived to rebuild, and as a scholar, it fell on Varen to rewrite the past three centuries of their Clan's history.
The Shifting also brought new threats to Valhallen. Many different strange and sentient creatures had emerged, so different to anything any dwarf had ever seen. It had brought conflict to the dwarves, which were already so few after the Shifting. The dwarves were quick to fortify their home, however with their supplies ever dwindling, they constantly had to the venture out in search of food and provisions.
The Shifting also exposed and created countless entrances into Valhallen, obscure passages and tunnels which the dwarves cannot possibly patrol or hope to completely fortify.
Varen stared into the pools of reflection, and wondered at future of his kind.
* * *
The scent was strong in the air, and was as unmistakable as it was pungent. Farria looked at her comrades knowingly.
They blended into their surroundings, nocking their bows. The orcs trudged through the elven ancestral homelands of Florellan, desecrating the soil with each step. They pushed and shoved, with no sense of discipline or order.
The Shaping had brought famine and war to the forests. Though the elves were superior warriors, and had evolved their combat technique to suit their homeland, the orcs came on in an unyeilding tide of hate and brute force. They had washed through forest, stampeding over the lush foliage and sacred wildlife which the elves so revered.
It was only with appauling casualties, superior strategy and steadfast valor that the elves were able to push the orcs back into the deserts. The elven population had been decimated, however after the incursion, only a handful of orcs had survived and the remaining elves were enough to hold them off. The elf population has since remained stagnant, unable to birth new young as the war with the orcs destroyed much of the forests, of which the elves rely on to bless their offspring with Lifeseed.
Recently though, the orcs had started to replenish their numbers and were constantly raiding the forests of the elves once again.
Farria, as one with her hunting party, drew sight on the orcs, and loosed an arrow.
* * *
Gnokka had had enough. While his Clan argued and warred within itself, the dwarf hold was ripe for the taking.
He was well used to the constant conflict around him, first within his bloodkin and now within the Clan as a whole. He had risen to power through his devious nature, and cunning prowess which gave him sight beyond the immediate, which was the weakness of most of the goblin kind.
"SILENCE FOOLS!" His high-pitched voice carried over the rabble, and to his satisfaction he was obeyed.
"Since the Shifting, our number have grown too vast for our homeland of Craggor to sustain us. We are protected from the other races, in that our lands are barren and it is only our mighty stomachs that can eat the poison mushrooms and fungii of Craggor. They have no want of our lands, but now that our numbers are large enough, it is time we take what WE want!"
Murmurs of disagreement sounded throughout the masses. His kind were not the bravest of folk.
"The den of the dwarves extends deep into the mountains, and would make a fitting home for our noble race."
This time, heads nodded and a silent reverie fell over the horde.
"Too long have we squabbled for scraps amongst ourselves. The time of the goblin... IS NOW!"
A high-pitched roar of agreement sounded, and with that, Gnokka picked up his sword, and marched.
* * *
Rekwar scanned the treeline. He didn't see any movement, but that didn't mean an elf wasn't taking his mark.
He stayed low, out of bowshot. After years of watching his kind throw their lives away to sate their inborn bloodlust, he had learned to master himself. During combat was a different story though, but he had to get into combat first.
There were too few orcs now to muster an army to march on the forest - too few to even satify their bloodlust warring amongst themselves, but their numbers were growing steadily. The elves had learned to defend their lands well, taking to the trees and using their keen archery and guerilla warfare to kill off orc raiding parties. The animals of the land seemed to respond to this, knowing that being outside of the forest would mean becoming a meal for the orc Clan. They hid with the elves in the forest, where the elves treated them with a strange reverence.
Rekwar hated this. He hated hiding like a rabbit, fearful of creatures as weak as elves. But these were hard times, he knew, and only the strongest orcs would survive. Rekwar would be one of them.
He signalled his party to advance, and immediately they broke cover and made a break for the trees.
Rekwar stumbled but pushed on.
They were nearly past the clearing and to the edge of the trees. Rekwar's leg felt cold and tingled. A glance down and Rekwar found the cause of his stumble. The shaft of an arrow had buried itself in his thigh. Rekwar felt rage consume him, as he spotted the elf archer in the distance, taking aim on him again.
"Finally, elf flesh!"
Well, hope you enjoyed the fluff I came up with - I really enjoyed writing it!