Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Wednesday Werk: Ordrang

In this week's Wednesday Werk, we'll look at the Ordrang.

In our discussion of the Ordrang, we're going to do something a little different.  As with most Werk entries, most of the important information regarding the creature(s)-of-the-week can be found in the original Hereticwerks entry (and I just linked to it three times, so you have no excuse to not read it).  As such, there isn't a lot to add.

However, Baron Lee van Hook, noted scholar and Discipulus of the University of the Study of the Arcane Arts and Sciences in Duchy Jepson, has taken to studying the occasional Ordrang sighting on the Sorrowfell Plains.  This initially seems strange because Baron Hook's field is botany, and he is currently arguing for the existence of what he calls "microphytes," exceedingly tiny plants that live in symbiosis with all living things, although some varieties may cause diseases such as blinding sickness and filth fever.  However, he considers the Ordrang to be what he calls a "macrosciaphyte," a very large microphyte with a connection to the Shadowfell.

We're not going to bore you with his notes and lectures on the subject, but Baron Hook's macrosciaphyte has a few notable characteristics.  Baron Hook classes the Ordrang as a "phagÅ“ktoplasmotic macrosciaphyte" (that's an "ectoplasmic-eating, large shadow plant" for laymen like you and I).  He has further noted that it possesses something he calls a "phagÅ“ktoplasmic pilus," a protrusion it can extrude from its spherical form that will attach to sources of ectroplasm and drink it dry.  The Ordrang lacks senses as we would understand them, instead bearing a rudimentary sense of ectoplasm.  If threatened, they can typically jaunt through the Shadowfell to regroup in what Baron Hook calls a "phasing tumble" or "shadow tumble" based upon the run-and-tumble behavior of his alleged microphytes.

The Ordrang is typically rather rare, and usually does not attack living creatures — it only focuses on incorporeal undead, finding them the most ready source of ectoplasm.  They have been known to attack astral projectionists on accident.  They will occasionally attack living things under the domination of a magic-user or if they are starving and no other energy sources are available — Baron Hook indicates that they are able to  they are able to phagÅ“ktoplasmotize the ambient ectoplasmic energy in all living things.

(DMs might consider this order of operations: they will attack things with the insubstantial resistance and the undead keyword first, things with only the insubstantial resistance second, things with only the undead keyword third, and all other things thereafter.  They will not attack living creatures if they are "sated," although some magic-users use them as eldritch guardians.)

The following specimen is indicative of a typical creature.  They are typically found in some places of the Shadowfell, and any place where necrotic energy is present — basically anywhere incorporeal undead may form.  Some, as noted, may also be found in the company of sorcerers, although necromancers almost never use them, as dominated Ordrangs still have a tendency to eat their summoned ghosts.

3 comments:

  1. Wow! You really ran with that one--excellent stuff! Very enjoyable to read this expansion upon the themes we've laid down. Herr Baron's theories would go over well in Wermspittle...though not without some challenges from those who say that the Ordrang are composed of some sort of higher-order plasm, mathematical incongruities, or other obscure and esoteric structures that have so far eluded any sort of proof. A few scholars have asserted that the Ordrang may only be a projected portion of a much larger, stranger creature extending across multiple planar strata...but so far no one has secured any real proof of any of the increasingly wild speculations and unfounded claims in circulation regarding these creatures. All the money is going into Horla hunting and expeditions to capture obscure abhuman sub-types that might have industrial applications. No sponsor has seen any real profit-motive for subsidizing research into the Ordrang, at least not yet...

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    1. That sounds the sort of story hook a mad magus with too much money should throw at a party of greedy adventurers.

      The only downside when enlisting adventurer-types for research is that they tend to not be terribly careful when handling evidence.

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  2. Depends on the adventurers. some are so good at the collecting of evidence that their one-time patrons will feel compelled to hire some 'Cleaners,' or other professionals to eliminate the adventurers as they know too much or are in a position to possibly blackmail or interfere in the mad magues' plans...it's all about the group dynamics, and when you come up through the ranks of the Corruption Trade as a Forager, well you do learn a few things, or you don't survive very long.

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