We started our Burning Wheel campaign using the Kingmaker Adventure Path more than 2 years ago.The game started with Zora and Hajek traveling south to the bandit fort. Then we saw it all again through Ivo’s eyes as he traveled south and saw the effect Zora and Hajek had been having. Then we saw it all again when Cyril came into the game and we get to experience the Riverlands through fresh eyes, with knights on the map. We’ve been re-contextualizing the journey from Restov to Olegton, southward to Spider Hill and finally to Fort Hajek for two years and it has been fresh and new and exciting every time.
Zora was a idealistic knight, ill-suited to bringing people together peacefully after a life of war and battle. Hajek was a jaded soldier who wanted to see the best in people and gave up his life serving a Swordlord who he believed would be a truly noble leader. Ivo came to the Riverlands having seen the worst of the rulers of Rostland.
He had little faith in the system Zora was trying to salvage and so he helped her build something new.
In the History of the Charterlands it is Swordlord Zora’s ability to find solutions that obviated bloodshed and her deftness at picking up the sword and leading her soldiers when necessary that shaped these provinces as much as Ivo’s love of the common folk and willingness to take harrowing chances on epic level sorcery and summoning.
In the last game, Ivo realized that his apprentices would learn Sorcery within the next month and smiled; he used his powers to help his friend have a child, also an heir that would bring stability to the region for another generation at least.
In the last game, Zora won a Duel of Wits with an angry Swordlord whose bitterness threatened to tear apart what she had built and through her curt, effective words – ended the argument the way she ended her battles.
Meanwhile, back in the real world…
I knew Rachel and I knew Drew before the game started but we weren’t as close as we are now. In the two years during which our game took place I got married and shifted over to a different library. My consistency has been negligible in all areas of my life – physical culture practice, jujitsu and writing. The main consistency in my life has been this game.
Traditions of the Swordlords has had a huge effect on the way I think about world building and basing games on established material.It deepened my understanding and love of Burning Wheel.
More important than any of that, 2 good friends became dear friends. Rachel would start some games by saying, “I missed your faces!” Aw.
Meanwhile, back in the Riverlands
We’re hitting the fast forward button and coming back to the Riverlands as elves. They will see their favorite characters and their work through new eyes, re-contextualizing everything all over again with fresh eyes, coming back to this place we’ve made decades later…