24.10 Life in Avalon on 1st Leaflost 1091.
THE AVALON TIMES
9th of September 2003
A newspaper for regular, irregular, past and future Avalonians.
On the Web:
"Probably the most complex, atmospheric RPG on the Net."
PC Format (Gold Star Award)
TABLE OF CONTENTS
The newspaper contains seven sections covering different aspects of
the land's recent developments and two further sections on accessing
Avalon and contacting us.
I Welcome to the third edition of The Avalon Times
II Avalon's Redesigned Web Site and Java Client
III Avalon's Current Political and Social Events
IV The Historical Figures of Olympus Return
V Future Additions
VI Accessing Avalon
VII Business Opportunities with Avalon
Acknowledgements to all those who have contributed opinion and information
for this newspaper. If you have any comments about this or questions about
Avalon e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
** STOP PRESS ***
There will be a gem quest on September 19th 2003. The gem being quested is
the Divine Diamond - the eternal mana gemstone; a key quest in the lead-up
to the ordination planned for this coming November/December. This quest will
be using a specially adapted version of the Avalon java client, currently
available for testing and acclimatisation on the website
(www.avalon-rpg.com). Instructions for downloading are available on the
Each of the fifty skill in Avalon is to gain two new abilities specifically
targetted at evolving an original, multi-purpose addition to the skill's
traditional repertoire. One ability will be arranged between the Master and
Grand-Master levels, the second as a crowning ability - a sign of mastery -
of the skill, for those who've pushed their learning to its very limits.
Suggestions, if you have any, must be made quickly - before the end of
September - and should be directed online to one of the deities or e-mailed
to email@example.com. Please, as a guideline, do not suggest alternate
versions of existing abilities; original ideas only!
SECTION I Welcome
Remember to keep your e-mail address up to date on Avalon by registering
with up-to-date details. To update your details enter Avalon and type
REGISTER. Use INFO to check what information is currently registered under
your name. You will find a copy of this newsletter on our web site
(http://www.avalon-rpg.com) and as time goes by, past editions will all be
kept there as an ongoing record.
If you don't want to receive this document via e-mail then all you need to
do is let us know, including REMOVE in the subject heading and you won't
see this again.
Well, good reading and we hope you enjoy.
SECTION II Avalon's Web Site
The old Avalon web site was extremely popular and very difficult to improve
upon. However, it has been totally redesigned at http://www.avalon-rpg.com
We are delighted with both its aesthetic and functional improvements and by
all accounts our visitors both old and new agree. As well as the information
carried over from the old site, brought up-to-date with current events in
the land, the new site offers a vast array of Avalon-related content with
improved functionality, speed and navigation. You can view the entire Avalon
manual, current affairs, modern and ancient histories as well as new
features designed to make the land more accessible. The Avalon roll call,
for example, makes Avalon's cast of characters; both the illustrious and the
unknown, and their noteworthy actions available for viewing.
The simple to use and vastly popular Java client has also received the brush
of change. Though the look and feel remains, especially the interactive
features, the inner-workings have been totally re-programmed. The most
advantageous aspect of which has been the decreased loading time and faster
reception of information from the game itself. As always, comments,
compliments and criticisms are always welcome at our support address:
SECTION III Current Affairs
Below is a summarised timeline of the most important political and social
events, followed by a detailed description of what took place:
I: 5th of Springflower 1081 - Mercinean surprise attack on Thakria.
II: 6th of Paglost 1082 - Thakria invades Mercinae.
III: 24th of Hindyear 1082 - Thakria forces Parrius to capitulate.
IV: 10th of Ilmarael 1087 - Divine coup of Thakria.
V: 25th day of Paglost 1091 - The Order of Chaos enters Parrius.
Avalon's history has always been diverse and richly alive with breath-taking
events; sometimes these can be intricately subtle, political movements for
example, and others explosive on a game-wide basis, such as the raising of
the Long Night, or surprise raids from an allied city. For years the
political climate between the old city in the north-western shadow, Thakria
and the eastern sea-port, Parrius had been one of guarded neutrality. Though
on the stage of public debate, Parrius was often derided for portions of its
citizens aiding Thakrians in combat, the city as a whole resolutely
maintained their stance of freedom for the individual to choose. Events
unfolded that soon changed this mutual understanding between Thakria and
I - 5th of Springflower 1081: An End to Peace
Mercinae had been at peace for too long; thus thought a certain number of
citizens newly risen to positions of influence. The results of economic
growth were obvious; the city shops bulged with produce, the youth was
growing in numbers and voice. Alongside this economy resurgence, Mercinae
had worked up its military and quietly regained strength under protection
from treaty and skillful diplomacy. Whispers of revenge against their old
enemies began to take shape, restitution for past defeats and the Mercinaens
slowly found their footing to stand again in battle against their foes.
On the 5th of Springflower 1081 the gates of Mercinae opened and a division
of its armies moved out on the offensive for the first time in decades. The
Mercinean generals Edgtho, India and Fistandantilus executed a well
organised quick-march through the Greenwood, battering easily through the
Thakrian defences that had been ill-arranged to meet the invaders. Having
dealt with the defenders, the Mercinaens set up raids against Thakrian
barracks and commodity stores. It became very obvious that this was a
tactical raiding party designed to strike quickly and take away Thakrian
resources. Thakria may have made an arrogant mistake in leaving their
southern gates virtually unguarded but their citizens were quick to react
once the danger became widely communicated. The small raiding party split
up, some heading towards commodity sheds, others for the city barracks. As
each broke through their respective doors with a wild cheer, the Thakrian
war machine responded: the legions attacking the barracks had stumbled upon
what was more than forty thousand troops. The Mercinean generals had vastly
underestimated the enemy numbers and speed of mobilisation. This
miscalculation had disasterous consequences. The Mercinean legions were
swallowed up with only minor losses sustained by Thakrians. Those attacking
the commodity sheds were then assailed before managing to collect a
substantial booty. Outnumbered and forced on the defensive the Mercineans
burst out of the commodity sheds and onto the streets of Thakria, soon to
make a hasty retreat with only the slimmest of pickings.
The Mercineans, all told, lost in excess of fifteen thousand men but, once
the retreating forces had been taken within their city walls once more, the
city leadership declared their raid a success. India, especially, sounded
the general consensus: a symbolic 'punch in the nose' had been carried out
and Mercinaen pride had been well-serviced, despite the brevity of their
II - On the 6th of Paglost 1082: Thakria Strikes Back
Mercinae's raid had been partly successful, though, more importantly,
it had revealed a more serious error: Mercinae did not have an army large
enough to face the Thakrians, man for man, on the field of battle. It was
only a matter of time before the Thakrians mobilised their full resources
and began the slow march south towards the Mercinaen walls. Though fully
alerted to the counterattack, Mercinaen numbers and recent losses meant they
were on the defensive from the outset. Thakria's timing was perfect, its
leadership potent, and the most significant Mercinaen generals were either
absent or outnumbered. India and a few lower-ranked Mercinaens led a brave
but, ultimately, ineffectual defence. Its fortifications were destroyed and
its gates burst asunder. The city of light was soon to feel the squeeze; its
guildhouses were torn to pieces, its commodities looted, its barracks put to
Most surprisingly of all, during this period of warfare, was the reaction of
independent Parrius. Marshalled, for the most part by Thakrian-sympathetic
Cordon, the Parrian armies began a march towards the western gates of
Mercinae. Shouts of warning and open dispute within his own government did
nothing to dissuade the Parrian military and though Zheredan and Tetsuo
heatedly tried to veto the attack, they could not prevent a clash of arms.
The result was disasterous for Parrius. By the time Thakria had finished
their looting of Mercinae their turned their attentions east and, though
depleted in number, were able to assail and rout Cordon's slow marching
legions. Thakrian fighters kept the Parrian generals at bay while the troops
did their work. Zenichiro, once Parrian and newly returned to lead Thakria,
was key to the shift in military prowess. Parrius was invaded with a full,
healthy Thakrian army.
III - On the 24th of Hindyear 1082 Thakria began an assault on Parrius.
Tetsuo, Cordon and Zheredan laid down their lives day after Avalon day in an
attempt to issue their troops the correct tactical commands. Unable to avoid
the ghastly Ships of Death, Cordon left the lands in despair. Zheredan and
Tetsuo continued to sail towards to Pool of Life and barely had time to
muster the Parrian armies from the barracks. Despite the Parrian army's
superiority in number, the Thakrians were successful. Ultimately, the
fighters who supported the Thakrian generals had achieved an historic feat;
two city conquests in the space of one year. Zenichiro, Hermione, Lancelot
and Yairi; these four masterminded the Thakrian achievements. They committed
the most time and tactical knowledge to win two campaigns back to back. The
list of people fighting alongside them and marching at ungodly hours is too
long to mention here.
The Parrian government sued for peace at the last moment, saving their city
from total destruction and salvaging what little pride remainded for the
rebuilding effort. The Thakrians, in the peace settlement, were relatively
magnanimous and both Tetsuo and Zheredan were praised for their bravery. A
cease-fire was hailed and the two governments discussed peace, eventually
agreeing on terms and returning control of the city back to the Parrian
government. Soon after, the finger of blame was justifiably levelled at
Cordon's controversial actions. The anger for the most part lay in his
defiance of the requests for proper consideration made by his peers. He is
no longer a citizen of Parrius.
IV - 10th of Ilmarael 1087: Nostradamus, god of Darkness takes over Thakria.
A few days before the date mentioned above, warning signals went out across
the lands of Avalon about trouble in Thakria. The city had enjoyed
affluence, military might unsurpassed and a strong complement of citizens.
Yet some of Olympus closest to the city were letting it be known that all
was not right in the City of Miracles. The city had become an economic,
laissez-fair meritocracy, a 'live and let live' metropolis. On the 10th of
Ilmarael dark clouds rumbled out of the northwestern mountains and engulfed
the city of Thakria. It was Nostradamus, god of Darkness. He decended to the
Centre of Thakria Square in his divine physical form and began to assert, in
unparallelled fashion, his divine might about the citystate.
The mortals were stunned and virtually helpless as Mephisto, god of the
night, joined Nostradamus' assertion of power to collapse the Thakrian
infrastructure. The entire Barony and government were stripped of their
positions and ejected from their homes. Nostradamus imposed a return to the
founding ideology of the city; power hungry, despotic and aggressive. He
denied entry to pacifists, whatever their economic benefit to the city. He
stated that Thakria must stand alone, on its founding ideals, for good or
ill - whatever the military and economic cost.
Nostradamus proceeded to install his own idea of a true government. A truly
evil government it was indeed. Yet, the events that unfolded were perhaps
the most controversial in all Avalon's history. Damocles, the god of Chaos
came to the ejected citizen's aid, offering them citizenship of his patron
village: Coriona. The main figures of the two Thakrian military campaigns
were now no longer homeless. In a shock move, the citizens of Coriona (who
were still members of many Thakrian guilds) marched troops out of the
Loremaster's guild house and began to destroy their own city from within.
Their timing was perfect. The new government were abroad and by the time
they reacted, only a stand off could be acheived. For the first time,
Thakrian troops stood on guard outside the Loremaster's guild house. Civil
war had begun. The disenfranchised Thakrians treatened to destroy all they
had come to build in their beloved city. They ran the risk of enraging
Nostradamus further and crippling Thakria. They refused to stand down.
Their gambit worked. Throughout the coup, Nostradamus had maintained that
the moral and physical fibre of Thakria were truest to his heart. This state
of affairs was not wanted be either side of the political fence. The
citizens of Coriona and Nostradamus came to an agreement and the Barony and
government were allowed to return home. Whether Thakria's approach to their
ideals has changed or not can only be answered by the citizens themselves.
One aspect of this page in Avalon's history is certain: Nostradamus, god of
Darkness and the citizens of Thakria have become close once more and his
close patronage has remained.
V - 16th day of Paglost 1089: The Order of Chaos enters Parrius.
The system of government in Parrius has always been truly unique. The
distinction between leader and citizen was slight and merely implied
responsibility, instead of power. The Custodial over Baronial leadership
sprung from the cities founding ideals of freedom. Yet the wind of change
arrived on the 16th of Paglost 1089. Damocles' protege, Bandit Plaman,
Emissary of Chaos left his long term home Thakria and joined Parrius. At
first, many citizens of Parrius were suspicious of his intentions. Soon
after Ender, the Ranger and also a higher member of Damocles' Order also
left Thakria to join Parrius. Since then Damocles' entire Order, including
Orinoko, former bastion of Springdale, has also gained Parrian citizenship.
The Parrian city bulletin board was rife for many weeks with suspicion,
accusation and deep concern. Since many of Parrius' leadership had left for
Thakria, including Zenichiro and Keldor, the city had been weakened. The
military conflict with Thakria left a gaping wound in the city economy and
self-belief. The timing of the order of Chaos' entry was perfect and the
make-up of Parrius has been undeniably changed.
The old custodial system has been scrapped and the modern baronial
leadership that the other three cities utilise has been implemented. Despite
protestations of a take-over, accusations of underhanded tactics and a
deeply ingrained fear of what is to come from these events, a poll was taken
and the citizens of Parrius have, at last, supported these changes. Where
the city of freedom will go from here, time will tell...
- Below we have a brief summary of the current state of the four
major cities of the continent:
- Mercinae is the weakest military city after she was conquered by the
Thakrians. She is, only now, regaining her footing. Its economy is finally
growing in strength, though sorely missing the profits of its once large
military sphere of influence. Its citizenry remains diverse, though the
fighting arm is still less than its counterparts. Edgtho of the Knights,
follower of the god of light, has gained the Princedom and promises a new
era of greater dynamism for the cityfolk. Guilds like the Mages, now full of
promising youth, are the city's great hope and confidence is slowly building
once again. Can Mercinae ever marry the power-house economy determined
pacifists can bring with the demands of a fighting leadership? Mercinae's
barony is as follows: Parnassus, Hannan, Edgtho, India and Foxedup.
- Thakria has enjoyed one of its longest periods of affluent dominance over
all three of the other cities in recent years: the invasion of Mercinae and
Parrius has made the two potential threats irrelevant militarily. This is
especially true since the fourth great city, Springdale, had been beaten
into submission by Parrian invasion and thus posed no threat to Thakrian
pre-eminence. Thakria, recovered from the civil war and reconciled with the
god of darkness, stands atop the tree; yet the winds of changes are blowing
from the south and the east. The barony of Thakria are as follows:
Zenichiro, Hermione, Aerian, Kodiak and Gaar.
- Parrius thrived under good leadership until some of its key, or older
citizens such as Orielle, Keldor and Zenichiro defected to Thakria. The
younger citizens, in charge of the largest army in the land, found it
difficult to cope. Economically, they had learned the ropes very quickly and
continued to bring in good harvests. Militarily, Parrius was divided until
the conflict with Thakria ultimately left it powerless and tattered.
Citizens such as Cordon are homeless. Zheredan, who remains one of the most
experienced field marshals in the land, is aloof from city life. The Parrian
citizenry remain enthusiastic, motivated and hungry to learn despite all
their setbacks. Those who are experienced are willing to teach, and those
who wish to learn do so with energy. Parrius will recover fully if they
continue on their current track and the influx of Damocles' proud,
independent followers may turn the tide sooner than would otherwise have
been. The Barons of Parrius are as follows: Plaman, Blotto, Raina and
- Springdale had been looking to grow quietly since the Parrian invasion and
had succeeded in effecting a steady recovery. The expiration of peace
treaties has recently allowed its troops to issue from the city gates to
secure a sphere of influence; small skirmishes with Thakrian outposts have
not led to major conflict. Pacifists made up a large proportion of the
citizenry for quite some time and they were suffering for it in much the
same way as Mercinae; strong economy, weak war-machine. However, the
Springdalians are increasingly marrying the economic and vibrant city life
that motivated pacifism can bring with a select group of determined
fighters. In the past year there has been divided debate between pacifists,
often backed by the fighting Paladins who follow Apollo, the god of light,
and those fighters who follow Mephisto, god of the night. The city of
dreams continues to fight to uphold its notion of diversity and individual
independence. Will this diversity lead to division and, thus, to
vulnerability? Springdale has proven remarkably spirited and resilient in
the past. The Barony of Springdale is as follows: Gandalph, Rhapsody,
Rastafar, Finbar, Armicia.
- Below is a list of the currently active public guilds, together with the
head of the guild and its patron deity.
Guild Name ^ Guildhead ^ Patron Deity
---------- --------- ------------
Knights Guild ^ Edgtho ^ Apollo, the god of light
Mages Guild ^ India ^ Castigere, the god of justice
Sorcerers Guild ^ Solan ^ Orthwein, the god of fate
Animists Guild ^ Dhonuill ^ Rhadamanthys, god of compassion
Rangers Guild ^ Pahn ^ Damocles, the god of chaos
Astrologers Guild ^ Zheredan ^ Mephisto, god of the night
Seers Guild ^ Cthulhu ^ Nostradamus, god of darkness
Alchemists Guild ^ Chronos ^ Proteus, god of the sea
Artisans Guild ^ Alexandra ^ No Patron
Bards Guild ^ Calidon ^ Wraith
Loremasters Guild ^ Yairi ^ Xanthe, the goddess of vengeance
Cavaliers Guild ^ Gaar ^ Xanthe, the goddess of vengeance
Enchanters Guild ^ Ailiana ^ Genesis, the god of time
Warlocks Guild ^ Aerian ^ Xanthe, the goddess of vengeance
Wizards Guild ^ Gandalph ^ Mephisto, god of the night
Paladins Guild ^ Finbar ^ Apollo, the god of light
Warriors Guild ^ Blotto ^ Xanthe, the goddess of vengeance
Mystics Guild ^ Tristian ^ Proteus, god of the sea
Bandits Guild ^ Dreeman ^ Damocles, the god of chaos
Prophets Guild ^ Galadriel ^ Mephisto, god of the night
Craftmasters Guild ^ Talisker ^ Wraith
- Three mortals hold the lofty title of Prince; Rhapsody the Craftmistress
is Princess of Springdale, Edgtho, the Guildmaster of the Knights is Prince
of Mercinae and Zenichiro, the Loremaster, heads Thakria. With Thakria in
its current state he is thus the most influential.
Section IV The Historical Figures of Olympus Return
The Gods have been a deciding and guiding in the ways of Avalon since its
Genesis, the god of time, brought the land to life. This is often expressed
through the patronage of individuals and guilds, or manifested through
mysterious and sometimes explosive reactions to the actions of mortals. The
more rich the pantheon is at any given time in history, the greater the
diversity of Avalon itself. All the Gods in the Halls of Olympus are
different and their relationships with mortals can be wide and varied, or
few and far between. These relationships often become the stuff of legends.
Lately many of the Olympians, most notably Nostradamus, have taken up a more
pro-active, belligerent stance towards mortalkind. This has rekindled the
fire of many an Olympian and the land quakes to their renewed vigour.
- Mephisto, god of the night returned: 10th Springflower 1069
Mephisto: Ordained from Helkarakse.
Date of Ordination: May 21st, 1993.
Patron: The Diabolus.
Defeated: Urquoth (Astrologer).
Mephisto was the second to win an ordination contest and ascend to the Halls
of Olympus. His first years of immortality have become but distant memories
to the old and virtually unknown to the young. He was the patron of Thakria
and lead three of his disciples also to the halls of Olympus. His dream
speaks more widely of these achievements and the transcendence of his realm
beyond the distinction of good and evil. Will his return herald a new age
for his charges or, as is suspected from his influence thus far, could it
herald something closer to chaos and insurgence elsewhere? His higher Order
are citizens of Parrius and Springdale, two cities previously excluded from
his divine influence.
- Nostradamus, god of darkness returned: 16th Skyelong 1073
Nostradamus Ordained from Blodwyn
Date of Ordination: March 21st, 1994.
Patron: Mephisto, god of the night.
Defeated Zollrender (Thief)
Nostradamus was the third mortal to win an ordination contest, rising to his
current immortal form. In Avalon's long history, his mortal avatar remains
one of the five greatest fighters to have walked the land. His Order, since
his return, has been a small, personally selected group of some of the more
prominent Thakrian citizens. Nostradamus is renowned for his intricate
machinations and keeps his own council. It is rumoured and, by many, feared
that Nostradamus lies in wait, keeping a vigilant eye on the darker corners
of the lands for those mortals worthy of his patronage. That he is building
his next cataclysm. More often than not, his eye roves northwest, to
establish and build his powerbase, and thence east, southeast, south,
anywhere not already under his dominion.
- Rhadamanthys, god of compassion returned: 7th Agamnion 1075
Rhadamanthys Ordained from Cinaed
Date of appointment: 2001
Patron: Aldaron, the god of life.
Defeated: Appointed by Genesis, the god of time.
Rhadamanthys was born from the mortal Cinaed. The appointment heralded a new
age for the more peaceful folk in Avalon. Cinaed was known as a mortal who
never once committed a violent act and Rhadamanthys' recent return to the
lands has been celebrated widely. The Animists guild have snapped up the
opportunity to sue for patronage. Rhadamanthys' Order now spans all cities
in Avalon, and the guidance offered has added a vibrancy to this side of the
land. Will the god of compassion's resurgence herald a more peaceful era, or
will it fuel the fires of those mortals avowed to thwart the pacifists and
persecute the peace-loving? The next pages of the land's ever evolving
history will prove interesting indeed.
SECTION V Future Additions and Requests
Avalon is always evolving, cities and guilds expanding one way or being
beaten back in others, skills growing with more abilities, greater scope,
the list goes on. Below we've highlighted a few specific additions coming
into Avalon over the next few months. Hopefully you'll find them
interesting and enticing. Remember we always welcome comment, criticism
and new ideas.
- Warfare is an area that intrigues a great number of players and is due
for further expansion now that the long period of military conflict
appears to have subsided. Terrain effects, manoeuvering during battle,
tactical positioning and more will be brought into play. All cities and
guilds have nominated a representative and there will be public forum
discussions to pool ideas for evolutions in the warfare system. Any
independent ideas should be submitted to firstname.lastname@example.org for
consideration and comment.
- The addition of Seafaring is approaching but Avalon would like to invite
all those with a penchant for literary and creative writing to consider
contributing islands. Islands can be independent quest centres or, if
ambitious, entirely distinct sub-continents. Contact any of the deities on
Avalon for further information and guidelines.
- There are hundreds of quests in Avalon, ranging from the commonplace
to the global and epic. Many of these remain undiscovered by most, some
are even forgotten to all of mortalkind. On the back of a long period of
militarism, though, there will now come to bear a wide range of new
quests. Quests mostly of the larger, more involving scale. Quests for all
walks of life, testing a whole range of abilities. Submissions for quest
ideas and writing are always welcome. Send anything you would like to see
in Avalon to email@example.com. We read everything we receive. If you
are keen to write your quest idea in full, consult us first for advice on
standard of prose and layout.
SECTION VI Accessing Avalon
Avalon is accessed most commonly via our web site using your web browser
and JAVA. Once players become more accustomed to the game they tend to
switch to an independent client which will offer more features for the
experienced player (typically zMUD or Avplay Windows are used). We can
offer advice on which client to use, especially for non-Windows platforms.
E-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions you might have.
If you continue to experience unacceptable lag you should get in contact
with us (email@example.com) and perhaps we can help. If you know how to
run a traceroute to investigate the state of your route to us, send us the
results, it'll help us suggest a solution.
Points of Presence (hubs):
Washington DC (Main) avalon-rpg.com 23
San Jose, CA (WestUSA) www.avalon-rpg.com 33
London (European) london.avalon-rpg.com 33
SECTION VII Business Opportunities
Avalon offers a number of business opportunities, mostly centred around
publicity and the World Wide Web.
- We are always interested in reciprocal advertising. Our web site is
popular and well-linked to the net (via search engines, advertising
banners, relevant sites).
- We are prepared to reward well positioned advertising, carrying one
of Avalon's web banners or any effective marketing. We have a number of
very stylish banners which would look good on any pages. Any player who
places an Avalon banner on their homepage, for instance, can apply for a
free credit reward.
- Reviews or coverage in the press is both appreciated and rewarded
depending on the extent of the effort involved and coverage obtained.
- We are keen to discuss with any prominent, well-positioned, well-used
web sites the possibility of distributing access to Avalon via Java with
potential for both payment and ongoing royalty. These should be major
sites with thousands of regular hits.
- Contributions to Avalon in the form of fully-fleshed out ideas,
additions, creative work such as quests and events, are always appreciated
and may be rewarded.
Thanks for reading!
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