The Alarian Imperium Legionnaire:

   For today it’s a section on the Legions of the Alarian Imperum in the Atheria campaign. Since the group is currently travelling with two of them, it seemed like a good bit of information to put up. As always for our campaigns, the packages are set up for Eclipse: The Codex Personal Classless d20. There’s a shareware version available HERE.

   The Legions of the Imperium have been turning youngsters into soldiers for more than six thousand years: they’re pretty good at it by now. They are highly disciplined (and enforce that discipline quite brutally), enjoy lengthy traditions, and wash out a sizable percentage of their applicants. While – as usual for NPCs – many of the Legionnaires never get much past level one, they get an excellent Package Deal and a basic fighter-framework that serves them well in their careers.

   Alarian Legionary Package Deal: The legions basic training places massive emphasis on drilling and functioning as a team, the use of shields, and in enduring long marches with heavy loads. Oddly enough, armor is not stressed. Since the Legions are normally issued Shimmermail in any case, there is little need for such training. The package deal provides:

  • The Legionary Feat (6 CP)
  • Shield Use Proficiency (3 CP)
  • +1 to Fortitude Saves (3 CP)

   Recruits may have differing talents to start with, but the legions make bloody well sure that all of their standard troopers and NCO’s-to-be wind up with the basic military skills they’ll need to serve in the legions. While they offer limited amounts of special training to take advantage of any special talents or bloodline potentials that their recruits may have, basic troopers tend to look a lot alike. Specialists, such as mages, get equally special training and treatment – for which they are both respected and resented.

The standard first-level Legionary build provides:

  • a d12 Hit Die (8 CP)
  • Proficiency with all Simple and Martial Weapons (9 CP)
  • Proficiency with Light Armor (3 CP)
  • +2 BAB (Corrupted: only with Legion Weapons, 8 CP)
  • DR 2/- (3 CP)
  • Defender (Specialized: only while using a Shield, 3 CP)
  • Skill Focus +2/Legionary Sword Training (3)
  • 7 Skill Points (7 CP): +3 Knowledge Speciality/The Legions (1), Legionary Sword Training (4), Survival (1), and a choice of (1) – although skills useful to the Legions, such as weapon-crafting or relevant knowledges are encouraged.
  • Customization (6 CP). While many Legionaries prove capable of learning minor magical talents, of expanding on their birthright, or otherwise learning tricks useful to the legions, a fair number effectively hold those points “in reserve” for their later civilian careers.

and

  • Duties (obliged to serve the Imperium, subject to either legion discipline or a painful execution for desertion), +2 CP/Level

   For a net L1 cost of 48 CP.

   Legionaries normally enjoy a “Common” lifestyle, although the intentional channeling of Order magic to them upgrades the number of Charms and Talismans they can normally use by one level – usually to three charms and one talisman. They will normally use Shimmermail (as an order-enhanced Talisman, +6 AC), Eager Rune Weapons (as an order-enhanced Charm), and two Order-Enhanced Charms of choice, most commonly a Bear Amulet (+2 Str), Zakari Stormbow, RubyDraught Flask, Dao Sigil, or Helm of War.

Alarian Legionary Sword Training (Str):

   This straightforward martial “art” is, unlike most martial arts, at it’s best in mass combat, where there are plenty of allies to set you up for flanking (“sneak”) attacks and – thanks to Combat Reflexes – to make anyone fool enough to charge one of your formations think that they’ve dived into a mincing machine.

  • Requires: Weapon Proficiency with Swords
  • Basic Abilities: Attack 3, Power 3, Defenses 3, Toughness 3
  • Master Techniques: Combat Reflexes, Mighty Blow, Sneak Attack II
  • Occult Techniques: None. (The price of minimal requirements)
  • Usual Known Abilities: With a usual skill rating of at least seven, most Legionaries are entitled to four of the forms abilities, most commonly Attack I, Toughness I, Combat Reflexes, and Sneak Attack I.

 

The Legions of the Alarian Imperium:

   The organization of the Imperial Legions has undergone numerous minor “reforms” and changes. After all, improvements are sometimes made – and even the magic of the Order domain is no match for the urge of a new emperor or general to make his or her mark by changing SOMETHING. It’s also commonly subject to local “tweaking”, especially in the matter of cavalry versus infantry – but the basic standards haven’t changed much in a very, very, long time. The formal organization of the Legions does not, however, consider auxiliaries such as slave-children, camp followers, local informants and agents, and special advisors; such matters are left up to the judgement of individual commanders. Still, at their base, the Imperial Legions are normally organized in tiers of five:

  • A Basic Patrol or Star of five men consists of 4 Common Legionaries, Troopers, or “Miles” and one NCO Patrol Commander or Sagent. Preferably every man will be skilled with a variety of weapons and tactics both afoot and mounted, and each star will include at least one man with basic medical and magical skills, one with some skill as a scout and knowledge of the local area, one competent in cooking and the maintenance and repair of weapons, and one capable of acting as an understudy for the Sagent. In practice, this often doesn’t work out.
  • A Standard Troop of 25 men consists of four Basic Patrols and one Command Patrol consisting of a NCO Troop Commander or Pential, two Messengers / Scouts, and two Specialists – normally minor magicians or scholar-priests capable of at least some healing, communication, and ritual magic. With any luck, they’ll have at least a little bit of offensive or defensive ability as well. The total thus consists of 16 Troopers, 4 Sagents, 2 Messengers/Scouts, 2 Magicians, and 1 Pential.
  • A Standard Company or Maniple of 125 men consists of four Standard Troops and one Specialist Troop containing two Combat Engineer Patrols (4 engineers and a Sagent each), a Drover Patrol of mule-drivers, carters, and logistics specialists (but no Sagent: if caught on the lines, Drovers should attach themselves to any handy Patrol), a Patrol of (hopefully slightly more powerful) mages / scholar-priests commanded by a Senior Magician or Okkula, and a Command Patrol containing the Maniple Commander (also known as a Second Pential or Exponus), his assistant (often a mage-clerk), a standard-bearer, and two signalers/musicians. The total thus consists of 64 Troopers, 18 Sagents, 8 Messengers/Scouts, 12 Magicians, 8 Engineers, 5 Drovers, and 4 Pentials. 2 Signalers/Musicians, 1 Senior Magician/Okkula, 1 Exponus, 1 Clerk, and 1 Standard-Bearer.
  • A Standard Regiment or Cohort of 625 men consists of four Standard Companies and a Support Company made up of three Standard Troops, a Logistics Troop (in charge of basic supplies and equipment repairs), and a Command Troop consisting of five specialist patrols – a Medical Patrol consisting of a Chief Physician and his assistants, a Regimental Magical Patrol consisting of four Okkuli (or sometimes Beastari*) and one Master Mage, a Command Patrol consisting of one Regimental Commander or Legate, two Aides-de-Camp, and a Regimental Standard Bearer or Signifer (and, traditionally, the regimental Treasurer/Paymaster), and two Messenger/Bodyguard Patrols, each consisting of a Sagent and four Troopers.  The total thus consists of 308 Troopers, 86 Sagents, 38 Messengers/Scouts, 54 Magicians, 32 Engineers, 25 Logistics Specialists, 20 Drovers, 19 Pentials. 8 Signalers/Musicians, 8 Senior Magician/Okkuli, 4 Exponi, 4 Clerks, 4 Company Standard-Bearers, 4 Assistant Physicians, 1 Chief Physician, 1 Master Mage, 2 Aides-de-Camp, 1 Signifer/Treasurer/Paymaster, and 1 Legate.

   *A Beastari is a specialist in handling and working magic involving the (easily-trained) animals of the Imperium: he or she is responsible for sending out – and seeing through – scout-birds and animals, for controlling and directing horses and draft animals under emergency conditions, and for operations involving special creatures, such as big cats. Beastari positions are one of the few positions in the Legions which is easily open to individuals with Blood birthrights.

  • A Standard Legion of 3125 men consists of five Standard Regiments. Unlike the smaller units, which have integrated command staffs, Legion Commanders are usually political appointees – even if they are professional military men – and travel with their own general staffs, mages, servants, and support staff, all of whom stand outside the official chains of command (but may be listened to anyway).

   The Imperial Legions are somewhat officer-heavy. This is partially because individuals from the major families tend to enter as officers almost automatically, partially because being a legionary tends to be more of a career than a job, and partially because – over many centuries – it’s often proved useful to always have a clear chan of command and someone available to take over if an officer goes down.

   Slave-volunteers, or soldiers reduced to slavery for major infractions, are sometimes found in the Legions, but the percentage is relatively low: while service in the Legion is a good route to manumission, it’s also an unusually dangerous one. Free soldiers are much more common, and usually either move on to other jobs after a relatively brief term of service or retire after a full military career with lands or a pension after their service.

   In most cases, the Legions basic tactics are relatively straightforward. While they take full advantage of their greater organization and training to outmaneuver their enemies on the battlefield, and of the Imperium’s superior protective charms to counter enemy magic. They normally simply define their objectives, march on them, and take them, whether by assault or by siege. On the move, they accept a slower pace in favor of erecting fortified camps at each stop – rendered more formidable as defenses by their habit of incorporating defensive runes and ward-enhancing effects into the design and layout. While this calls for extreme standardization, the Legions are more than capable of handling it.

   The Legions are routinely successful against the Barbarian Lands, despite the occasional dragon-totem warlord who drives them back for a time or and the occasional isolated force wiped out by an unexpectedly-large barbarian army. Similarly, The edges of the Mri Desert and the virtually uninhabited reaches of the Trackless Forest are easy enough to hold – if anyone wants to bother. Unfortunately, the Dimensional Magic domain is considerably more difficult. Not only are there plenty of mighty heroes, with their unpredictable and chaotic abilities, infesting the area but there is an annoying tendency for escape routes and reinforcements to appear from nowhere and a nasty tendency for gates, dimensional distortions, and considerable chunks of territory to appear and disappear at whim. Only recently two entire legions simply vanished while in pursuit of Siridovix (a local heroine) and her band of warriors: they and their targets apparently passed through a dimensional rift and have not been heard of since.

   Attacks into Chelm are almost as problematic: limited-objective raids, especially with local support (which is almost always available from rival tribes), are relatively easy and almost always successful – although casualties are often relatively high. Actually attempting to hold any significant portion of Chelm seems to be an invitation to constant harassment by spells, undead spirits, horrific animals, and noxious toxins. In general, the Legions settle for trying to keep the problems of Chelm safely in Chelm.

   Regardless, the imperial table of organization calls for 25 Frontier Legions and a similar number of peacekeeping and auxiliary Legions Vigeles operating within the Imperium.

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One Response

  1. […] Alarian Legionaire Build and some Sample Legionaires (these characters use the half-price attribute rule). […]

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