Quests are subplots that are related to but separate from the main dispute of the arc. Factions pursue them in parallel with the arc’s main objective. They are meant to give meaning to week-by-week Balance of Power standings, and to allow factions a chance to make progress on some story goals even if they don’t win the overall arc.
Week 16 was the final week of Quest draws for the arc.
Rules and Mechanics
Quest draws rely primarily on Balance of Power:
- Balance of Power roll. Roll dice based on the faction’s BoP standing. The format is X minus Y, e.g., d6 minus d8. The better the faction’s BoP, the more favorable the X/Y balance.
- Tarot draw. Draw a tarot card. This determines the type of challenge the faction faces, and the difficulty of the challenge. (The challenge type may be Might, Vision, Influence, or BoP itself.)
- Stat base. Add the faction’s appropriate stat.
- Modifiers. Add in any modifiers from, e.g., the previous week’s lore events.
If the BoP roll plus the stat, plus any other modifiers, meets or exceeds the difficulty of the challenge, the faction progresses. Else, it suffers a setback. Either way, there’s some story development.
Balance of Power
Week 16 was the week of September 5. The Friday was September 9.
At the time, the Balance of Power standings were:
- Bandle City: 37 (rolling d12 – d6)
- Bilgewater: -1 (rolling d6 – d6)
- Icathia: -12 (rolling d6 – d8)
- The Freljord: -24 (rolling d6 – d10)
|Bandle City||4 (+1)||7||7|
|the Freljord||9||6 (+1)||3|
From Week 13’s FMs:
- The Freljord gets +3 to its next Influence check.
Rerolls from prior weeks:
- Bandle City
- Vision (Week 8)
- The Freljord
From recent FMs:
- FMs (Sep 3-4) with wombo combo rosters
- Sweep for the Voidles. Bandle City and Icathia each get +3.
- Week 14 FMs (Aug 27-28)
- Ally matches
- +3 Bandle City
- +3 Bilgewater
- Totals for Quest Week 16:
- Bandle City: +6
- Icathia: +3
- Bilgewater: +3
- The Freljord: 0 (aww)
Faction by Faction Updates
This is how each faction fared in the tarot card draws.
Bandle City continued its Influence Quest, currently at:
Step II: “Yordle Traders”
Guided by advice from the Mothership-stored spirits of famous yordle merchants, Bandle City’s traders have overcome the prejudices (some of which, to be fair, were more like postjudices) of humans and established more cordial relations with the major commercial capitals.
It drew, appropriately enough, The Moon:
A Major Arcana means a Difficulty of 7. The random type selected was BoP.
In September of 26 CLE, Mayor Dennison Jadefellow announced his intention to found a Bandle City Merchant’s Guild, with trade routes operating across Valoran. However, this would require a series of significant petitions to the League, particularly since the caravans would be armed.
Bandle City, sitting pretty at 37 BoP, obliterated the difficult challenge.
A wave of Bandle City victories on the Fields enabled the remarkably swift passage of the petitions necessary to implement Jadefellow’s ambitious plan. The Guild was founded, and its first caravans dispatched.
As the first Guild caravans left Bandle City, to much cheering, the lunar base Commercial Activity Tracking System was powered up. Its telescopes and communications relays fed information into a piece of Mothership technology that displayed a changing map.
And that was when something remarkable happened. The CATS facility, and the lunar base itself, seemed to come alive, almost like the Mothership or Lanpoa. Indeed, both the Mothership and Lanpoa simultaneously projected holograms of the lunar base, accompanied by a rapid barrage of computer-chatter and perplexing imagery that even the Mothership Elders could not decipher.
The lunar base did not display any further such activity after this initial burst, but the yordles who operate the CATS command center said that ever since that day, they felt something unusual. And as it happened, many a yordle trader encountering hazards under the full moon came out of their ordeal not so worse for wear as would have been expected…
Bandle City completes its Influence Quest!
Step III: “Bandle Merchant Guild”
The Mayor has announced the formation of the Bandle Merchant Guild, in partnership with mercantile representatives from every major city-state in Valoran. Clever yordle merchants and diplomats have paved the way for a yordle commercial revolution.
It also gains +d3 to the Epilogue roll, from the Moon card.
Icathia continued its Vision Quest, which focuses on using widespread pyrikhosian technology to exert greater influence over Valoran.
It’s still at:
Step I: “NoxiToxis”
Zasho Brands made a name for itself with ThaumaKola, but has since added further items to its highly profitable line of consumer extradimensionally enhanced products, such as SpectriYum and Porphex. Years after these Void-tainted comestibles first went on sale in Zaun, no serious side effects have been reported. However, Zasho continues to urge customers to enjoy responsibly.
This time, it drew the Eight of Pentacles, indicating a Vision challenge at Difficulty 8. (Pretty daunting.)
Its initial roll was a clear failure, but it proc’d the reroll bonus from Nefara (see: Week 8). It lucked out, and on the reroll, the “negative” die came up 1, the best possible outcome. It thus narrowly succeeded.
The Hextech Revolution flooded Valoran with technology driven by pyrikhos, purple sand found in Shurima after Void contamination spread into the desert and mingled with residual Shuriman magic. Pyrikhos revolutionized techmaturgy, by providing a plentiful and nearly universal power source for hextech artifacts. Previously, such devices had to be custom made, and had to be “powered” by suitable sources: indeed, much of the skill of crafting such devices was determining what source of magic would mesh with the unpredictable ways in which the arcane structure of the device had developed. As Valoranians learned to work pyrikhos, hextech became much more versatile and affordable, with Zaun leading the charge.
The Battle of Shurima and the resealing of the Void rift beneath Zaun’s pyrikhos mines dampened the overall potency of pyrikhos. Zaun’s scientists moved on to analyzing “pure” Shuriman elemental magic, and corporate powers wary of a coup took the opportunity to scale back the HexKorps. Yet many consumer goods remained on the same formula, including the NoxiToxis, consumables made using Void ooze from contaminated Noxian land. NoxiToxis like ThaumaKola energy drink and SpectriYum candy actually pre-dated the discovery of pyrikhos, though that discovery did bring a slew of “improved” recipes, and the ongoing use of pyrikhos (with its inevitably byproducts) provided a new source of Void ooze after Noxus cleansed its territory.
Icathia had built up its connections with merchants, manufacturers, and trade officials, and for some time had been quietly promoting the development of Void-powered products: NoxiToxis, hexcast video players, and even the illicit drug Pharmakon II, which aligned users’ physiology with Void energy dynamics and, in mages, granted dangerous psionic powers. After all, it would not win control over Valoran just by backroom meetings and the corruption of individual officials by spooky visits from hooded purple-eyed figures who said sinister things about their “associates”. But if it could turn every pyrikhos-driven device into a psychic hook into the user, and entice the common people of Valoran to spill their thoughts and dreams out into the Void—that might be a remarkable advantage indeed.
The solution came from a band of Zaunite scientists who, struck by astonishing visions of the Void’s infinite beauty, had come to the court of the Lich Queen Nefara in Shurima. At her command, they set about deconstructing the psychic space that existed between pyrikhos and those who invoked its power, whether by activating a potent hextech device or simply downing a bottle of ThaumaKola before an exam. It took the talents of Nefara herself, in the end, but her masterful grasp of lost Shuriman magic allowed her to bridge the gap between some of the oldest spellcraft in Runeterran history and the technology of the Hextech Revolution.
Shortly thereafter, a high-ranking PsiKorps investigator, Thelma Haushap, was paid a visit by an Icathian Summoner, who offered to increase the abilities of her most gifted agents and allow them to tap into the thoughts and desires of anyone using a pyrikhos-powered device anywhere in Zaun…
The Quest advances to:
Step II: “Eyes In Your Radio”
The Zaunite Science Consortium has issued a definitive report, published with the unanimous agreement of scientists from a diverse array of corporations: anxiety about new technology and pre-existing psychic conditions, rather than some nefarious extradimensional influence, best explain rare and isolated reports from users of hextech devices that they feel they are being watched, or have undergone personality changes after use of the devices, or no longer belong in this dimension. These devices will therefore continue to be sold in every nation in Valoran.
Bilgewater continued its Influence Quest to gather aid from other nations against the Black Mist. It is currently at:
Step II: “Atlantis Sends Aid”
The Atlanteans were on the brink of extinction when Bilgewater and the Lunari intervened. Summoners have worked to bridge the gap between Atlantis and the rest of Bilgewater, and Atlantis has pledged to join in the defense against the Mist.
It drew the Knight of Staves:
indicating the involvement of its most recently highlighted Champion (Tahm Kench) in a BoP-based check representing negotiations with the League and match victories.
Nyroth was badly shaken when civil war briefly returned. The devastation that followed, and perhaps just as importantly the heightened anger among the various subfactions, seriously hindered the already difficult reconstruction efforts. Bilgewater proposed an emergency levy on the nations of Valoran to supply a relief effort. But the League’s general assembly, wary of a domestic Valoranian backlash against such taxes for the sake of foreigners, would not allow such petitions to progress beyond preliminary stages.
Bilgewater rolled quite nicely, and added recent FM wins to a favorable die roll. Together with its BoP hero, it easily succeeded despite a mediocre BoP:
From the day of his admission to the League, Tahm Kench had been most profitably engaged in the process of fattening up his book of favors. After seeing Nami lose another motion to supply Nyroth with aid, he invited her to a scrumptious feast, where in between his indulgent chomps and slurps he outlined a plan. In the end, though by no means reassured by his “charming” banter, she agreed.
The next session of the League’s general assembly opened with Archsummoner Talik Lathner, overseer of the League’s coordinated efforts to hold back the Black Mist, elevating Nami’s motion for Nyrothian aid above the usual procedural track by marking it as a matter of League defense. After all, Nyroth might itself be a target this Harrowing, and as Bilgewater intended to coordinate defenses, Bilgewater’s own security arrangements were at stake. A handful of Summoners who’d had dealings with Tahm Kench gave polished (if somewhat halting) speeches in support of the defense efforts, with token remarks about the plight of Valoran’s new friends in Nyroth, and the matter advanced over the Freljord’s objections after a series of matches gave procedural advantage to Bilgewater’s representatives.
A general levy was announced, and relief funds were swiftly applied to shoring up (as it were) Nyroth’s coastal defenses, and arming its troops for potential service at home or abroad.
This takes Bilgewater to:
Step III: “The Red Flag of Nyroth”
Bilgewater’s diplomatic and commercial assistance has restored a measure of power and dignity to the broken land of Nyroth. When the Mists roll in this year, they are met by a sight not seen in millennia: the red battle-flags of Nyroth, borne by an armada come from across the sea to return the favor in Bilgewater’s hour of need.
Influence Quest complete!
The Freljord returns to its Influence Quest to stop being seen as uncouth barbarians and be recognizes as a civilized member of the League, currently at:
Step II: “Frostgems”
Ashe’s attempts to capitalize on the Freljord’s natural frostgem deposits had faltered, with the pale blue stones being treated as novelties at best, and more often as cutrate substitutes for real gemstones in jewelry. This rapidly changed when her Summoners used revelations from the Guardian’s Sea nexus to develop means of employing the frostgems as arcane foci.
It drew the Nine of Cups, indicating a Difficulty 9 (!) Influence check. Despite a buff from Week 13’s FMs, it failed with a total of 5.
During the administration of Bilgewater’s levy for the Nyrothian reconstruction and defense fund, Ashe discovered that several Freljordian officials had been pocketing revenues that should have gone to prior League levies. She first called in favors to obscure this, and then insisted that the officials quietly resign. Her political maneuver backfired when they went public with the exchanges. The Freljord was left looking corrupt and disorganized, and several negotiations broke down as the Freljord’s partners decided they did not want to risk getting entangled in such clumsy operations.
If you want the granular details on these draws, see this GDoc.