Darkness: A Stellaris/Lord of the Rings Crossover AAR

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Darkness: A Stellaris/Lord of the Rings Crossover AAR

Post by Smyg » 16:53:56 Thursday, 14 December, 2017

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Re: Darkness: A Stellaris/Lord of the Rings Crossover AAR

Post by Smyg » 18:52:04 Thursday, 14 December, 2017

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Ash nazg durbatulûk, ash nazg gimbatul,
Ash nazg thrakatulûk agh burzum-ishi krimpatul.

One ring to rule them all, one ring to find them,
One ring to bring them all and in the darkness bind them.



Prologue

The Darkness calls to me. It did once before, but then it had another name: Melkor, He Who Arises In Might. Or Morgoth, the Dark Enemy, if you wish. I served him loyally, my beautiful Lord of All, the Giver of Freedom. Or... I think I did. It was a long time ago, my memory is hazy, and the details are conflicting.

But the Necromancer has called me back, and I have kneeled before a new Lord. My shape now restored, that is all I need to know, that I must serve. He is weak yet, a shattered ember of the flame he once was, but an ember glowing brightly in the darkest, deepest halls of our world. In the chambers of Lugbúrz, Barad-dûr itself. Our hold of Angband is no more, and our new walls are yet crumbling, but this fortress shall last.

The hosts have amassed, and his reign shall begin anew. The Barad-dûr Black Pact marches.

The Black PactShow
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We hail from the land of Mordor, bound in place by the fires of Orodruin, Amon Amarth, yes, Doom itself. Little grows in the volcanic plains of our world, although brambles, lichens, fungi, herbs and queer flowers can be found in the cracked valleys, alongside strange, twisted beasts that hunt in prowling packs at night. The Sea of Núrnen is salty but fertile, fed by our star's endless waste providing nutrients, and what food is grown is derived from there. My Lord is a being of vision, and our mines and forges shall be the key to our success, although they have hardly helped the appearance of this landscape...

Mordor and OrodruinShow
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My people (if you can call them that - I do bear their form, I must admit) bears many names. We are the Yrch, the Rakhâs, the Gorgûns, the Goblins, the Orcs... In the Black Speech, my tongue, we are simply Uruks. So much time have passed, that I do not remember our origins, but Morgoth never could create true life, despite all of his power. The Uruks were... something else, once. As I was. And it shows, in their longevity --- unless their warlike, treacherous, thickheaded, bloodthirsty nature beats them to the punch. If nothing else, once whipped enough, they are hard workers and strong fighters, a force to be feared.

The UruksShow
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The Trolls, big brutes cannot even survive the light of our red star, have been refined by the influence of our Lord over the centuries, and brought under his command. A new breed has been born, the Olog-Hai, solitary battle-trolls of little intelligence and great power. These beasts are not a replacement for the war-beings that I remember for ages most ancient, fellow servants of Morgoth, but will prove useful still. There are no better slaves to be had.

The Olog-HaiShow
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And who am I?

I am Boldog. One of many host-lords, one of many Mouths of the Dark Lord, but --- for now --- the one that harkens his call to war, and rallies the other commanders, reigning in their tribal authority, breaking their wills, flaming the fires of industry. Uruk society is one of warchiefs and feuding gangs, and an Overlord is needed, to keep the lesser leaders in check.

My Lord cannot command his forces himself, not in this state, and the Nazgûl are little more than faint whispers in this era of decline, for now... In truth, I am their better, and I hunger to relive my past. Even if I barely remember it. The hordes of Uruks and Olog-Hai are better servants in this endeavour than any once-mortal ghast or barrow-wight, and I do not say that simply because I share their crude shape. There is something... special ... about them. No doubt some of their chiefs will challenge me, and I shall delight in their attempts.

The Overlord and the Pact's GovernmentShow
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Let a new Age begin. As Overlord of the Barad-dûr Black Pact, I shall spread the Darkness of Mordor among the stars, and every race shall bow before the Dark Lord.

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Whisper me your commands, oh LordShow
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Three Rings for the Elven-kings under the sky,
Seven for the Dwarf-lords in their halls of stone,
Nine for Mortal Men doomed to die,
One for the Dark Lord on his dark throne
In the Land of Mordor where the Shadows lie.
One Ring to rule them all, One Ring to find them,
One Ring to bring them all and in the darkness bind them
In the Land of Mordor where the Shadows lie.
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Re: Darkness: A Stellaris/Lord of the Rings Crossover AAR

Post by Smyg » 19:58:10 Thursday, 14 December, 2017

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Chapter I: The Bright Lord Rises
SpoilerShow
OOC: All of this is based very vaguely on the Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor and Shadow of War plots, as it fit perfectly for a rival cult within Mordor itself against the Dark Lord. Hopefully, it will not occupy too much of my time. Since my approach to the Orcs is much based on those games, I'll do this, but the rest will be more mainstream things.

My forces begin to rally, and Uruk scouts are sent out, ready to survey the other bodies orbiting our red star, Doom. We will strip-mine these lands for precious ores, to fuel our machines, and then we will reach out among the systems.

--- or so I thought. My Dark Lord grants many powers, but the power to see the future is not among those I hold.

Before my scouts can cover much ground, rumours of heresy against the Dark Lord resurface, having laid dormant for a long time. Tales of the "Final Crucible", of the "Silver-Handed Smith" and his forge-hammer, of a prophet-warrior called simply the "Grave-Walker"... Disgusting.

No matter. The hosts will cut them down at Pirgak's Freehold. I dispatch Rhass, one of my foremost servants. Once little more than a carrion-feeding snaga, his unexpected ways of killing have led him to great respect among the warchiefs.

The Rebels and Their HunterShow
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The Battle of Pirgak's Freehold proves fierce, and one significant host is lost at the hands of these forge-cultists. The Uruks do not yield, however, and Rhass' cunning brings them to a bloody victory. An enemy host is disabled by a carefully aimed bolt-shot, and Rhass sends in a boarding party of Olog-Hai trolls to smahsh down upon the treacherous warriors.

The results are horrific, in many ways. The Olog-Hai's heavy fists subdue the fighters, and the few survivors are found to all be Uruks marked by a strange, blueish light emanating from their very eyes, causing a sting in ours. Something has... branded them?

Fighting briefly erupts across Mordor, with a few of my fellow lieutenants of the Dark Lord proving to be traitors as well, marked in a similar fashion. They desert alongside minor bands, fleeing into the wastes and voids. For Uruks to turn away from their Master is a sight to see. Those warriors branded by this Grave-Walker are everywhere, and they all speak of their god: The Bright Lord.


The BattleShow
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For now, we have hunted down the last Uruk traitors within sight of the Great Eye, and all is well at the foot of Barad-dûr. But my Lord cannot see everywhere, and it nags me. This... Bright Lord... may yet be hiding out there, if the stories are true, and he is able to turn our soldiers against us, through means unknown.

No matter. This "Final Crucible" can not stop the spread of darkness. Surely.

A Eruchîn, ú-dano i faelas a hyn an uben tanatha le faelasShow
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Re: Darkness: A Stellaris/Lord of the Rings Crossover AAR

Post by Coin » 20:26:07 Saturday, 16 December, 2017

Excellent read, and an off-the-wall concept... it wasn't what I expected to see after the humanoids pack was released!

Did you add in the dwarves/elves as races that might spawn?
KR: Unie van Suid-Afrika
MG BoP: Medīnat Yisrā'el
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Re: Darkness: A Stellaris/Lord of the Rings Crossover AAR

Post by Huojin » 06:19:41 Sunday, 17 December, 2017

All must kneel before the Great Eye. He who was Lord of the Earth shall become Lord of All, and pour into the great spiral ring of the galaxy his malice and power, until all is One with him. Then shall Eru quake, and know that all he had wrought belongs rightfully to us.

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Re: Darkness: A Stellaris/Lord of the Rings Crossover AAR

Post by Smyg » 22:33:56 Tuesday, 19 December, 2017

Coin wrote:
20:26:07 Saturday, 16 December, 2017
Excellent read, and an off-the-wall concept... it wasn't what I expected to see after the humanoids pack was released!

Did you add in the dwarves/elves as races that might spawn?
I did not! :3 Hoping for variants to be there organically, so to speak, and for me to adapt based on them.

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Re: Darkness: A Stellaris/Lord of the Rings Crossover AAR

Post by Smyg » 22:34:15 Tuesday, 19 December, 2017

Huojin wrote:
06:19:41 Sunday, 17 December, 2017
All must kneel before the Great Eye. He who was Lord of the Earth shall become Lord of All, and pour into the great spiral ring of the galaxy his malice and power, until all is One with him. Then shall Eru quake, and know that all he had wrought belongs rightfully to us.
Hail, Mouth, hail!

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Re: Darkness: A Stellaris/Lord of the Rings Crossover AAR

Post by Smyg » 15:48:45 Wednesday, 20 December, 2017

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Chapter II: Emissaries of the Deceiver


The Final Crucible cult disappear once more into the night, cowards as they are. Licking their wounds rather than meeting the Dark Lord, eh? I spit upon their Bright Lord.

It is time to explore the lands outside out Mordor itself, focusing at last - with this distraction gone - on sending out the scouts and emissaries of the Deceiver, to hail his teachings among the stars, to loot the forgotten artefacts of ages past, and to let the Darkness seep out. Three such Uruks are sent out, commanding their own little discovery-hosts named after great warchiefs of the past --- Velt aboard Hempest the Fearless, Cognat aboard Lessaja the Ruinous, and Listhim aboard Bathun the Champion.

The Tendrils SpreadShow
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The systems immediately outside of the great Orodruin's light prove to be, as befits the vicinty of Mordor, little more than ancient, scrap-filled, scarred battlefields. Here, battles once stood, and forces of old feasted upon blood and gold. No less than three Tomb Worlds are found right next to us: Asterion 1a and Asterion IV to our east, and Kharasta Ia to our south. Was it here that I fell, aeons ago..?

Something strange lies in the depths of Asterion IV, and I can tell we have much to learn. A minor Uruk outpost is established in the skies above, to foray for artefacts and scout the deadly rocklands.

The Tomb WorldsShow
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I can feel the taint of Darkness nearby, vibrating. Soon our scout Cognat reports that the crew of Lessaja the Ruinous has found a ruined hold above Asterion III. Once isolated, on orders of its forgotten lords, the little garrison seems to have slaughtered itself. ... Odd.

In the second battlefield system, near the third Tomb World, Cognat later finds a monolith, carved by long-dead artists, describing strange songs. I recoil upon reading the slab's contents, and send the imagery off to the thralls for analysis instead. My eyes, long dead, cannot bear such disgusting beauty.

That Death itself surrounds Mordor becomes ever more clear with one final discover, on Vermillion V just west of the Black Pact's homelands. Pale and twisted armours, the carcasses of some sort of... mechanical wraiths... united by a singular purposes, emerge in the clouds of the gas giant. Their crusade echoes that of our own, and I taste the stench of my beautiful Lord Morgoth, even though I don't remember our connection. Best not to dwell on the past. We are not the first, but we will be the last.

News of all these finds reach the foothills of Barad-dûr quickly, and many returning scouts are offered free grog by host-captains seeking an upper hand against their rivals, to spill what little they have learned. Knowledge is power, even among the goblin-folk.

Discoveries of Lost AgesShow
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As the reach of the Dark Lord grows greater and greater, sucking up yet more systems, troubles continue. No sight yet of the Bright Lord, but conflicting reports of raids by the "Phantom Armada" spread fear among superstitious Uruks. Are they ghostly wraiths or mere bands of traitors turned to banditry against the Deceiver himself?

I personally execute a snaga, a filthy Orc-thrall, once his word about where we could find the Phantoms is proven wrong. There's nothing in the void, yet, and the Overlord has no time for weak lies.

The Phantom ArmadaShow
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Never mind.

The discoveries of lost battlefields continue, now in lands far to our west. Once again it is Cognat and Lessaja the Ruinous that finds the oddities. Ajandis III proves to be another Tomb World, marked by war, but the true find comes from the nearby Pomic Krac. Intelligent life, if you can call it that, at long last.

Among its frozen crags, the fallen remnants of a once-proud race --- or at least the splinters of part of one --- are found. Perhaps not all of these beings have descended so low, but we shall delight in their final destruction still. Death approaches, and I grow greedy for it.

Scurrying among the filth of their own nests, gnawed bones merging with gigantic, broken eggshells, Cognat and her discovery-host finds... The Great Eagles! Or what is left of this particular branch. Whatever ancient battle that twisted Ajandis III no doubt sent these creatures crashing down as well. They have lost their wings, their lungs have weakened, their feathers have fallen off, and the skies are no longer theirs. The Yeon Eyrie, sickening in its very appearance, stands before us.

Oh, how I pity you, you beings forged by Morgoth's own half-brother, Manwë, Ruler of the Sky. These spirits in the shape of hawks and eagles, them I remember, a flash from the misty past. You, who watched with vigilance when the Orc-hosts approached the Hidden City, and slew the winged dragons of my Lord, now reek of the same base matter from which the Uruks were born. As they were twisted, so have you been. Not so different now, are we?

The Once-Great EaglesShow
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I grant the dutiful scout a little boon, a title. They are now Cognat the Clever, the Dark Lord's most studious pupil, and unusually nimble in the mind for a mere Uruk. Service is rewarded by our Master, and my word is bond. The hosts soon pick up on the new name for our foremost emissary.

Let it begin.

Cognat the CleverShow
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