Circle Orboros


  • Lortus
  • Mohsar
  • Dahlekov

The Circle Orboros is the most ancient unbroken human organization extant in western Immoren consisting of druids and their allies dedicated to limiting the spread of civilizations and protecting the wilderness of Caen. While the druids rely on the Devourer Wurm for power and are often confused as priests of the Devourer Wurm, the druids of the Circle wishes to keep the Wurm occupied in battle with Menoth. Recent events such the spread of dragon blight ,renegade blackclads conspiring to aid the return of the Wurm as well as the inexorable spread of civilization threatens the goals of the Circle and many blackclads insist violence on any scale against civilization is justified to avoid the impending doom.[1][2]

History Edit

The Circle Orboros was founded after the fall of the Molgur tribes and the rise of the Menite priest-kings to keep the balance between the rising civilization and wilderness of Immoren. The circle used various methods ranging from creating disasters to more overt methods such as murder and assassination to keep the Human nations fractured. Thousand Cities Era was advantageous for the circle as humans were divided to many city-states and fiefdoms that were in constant conflict against each other and the circle stopped any of these from becoming a threat with the exception of Caspia and the Khardic Empire. The Khardic Empire which was uniting under warlords was a major threat to the goals of the circle but attempts at its destruction only delayed the rise of the Empires. The northern civilization was protected by the entity known as Zevanna Agha who could draw the powers of the land similar to Circle but also on the vast strength of the people of her lands. All attempts by the Circle to understand her powers or to stop her failed.[3]

The next major defeat was the arrival of the Dragonfather to the Sharde Islands and one of the most powerful druids in the Circle betraying the order to serve the dragon.The Sharde Islands was populated by the remnants of the Molgur and had a major Circle presence before the betrayal which saw the destruction of the order in the Islands, its members enslaved as undead and their knowledge stolen and perverted. The arrival of the Orgoth further devastated the Circle as the invaders attacked and captured sacred sites of the order and carried out various dark rituals. The Circle responded calling upon the powers of the earth to swallow the places tainted by Orgoth magic. Many of these places had been reclaimed from the Black Kingdom of Morrdh and had taken generations to purify. The Circle unleashed a powerful plague called the Rip Lung that devastated both Immorese and Orgoth populations. The Circle believes the plague wiped out the Orgoth civilization after making its way to their homeland through supply routes. [3]

While the Orgoth were defeated the damage done by them took centuries heal. Further the rise of the Iron Kingdoms has only accelerated the expansion of cities and the rise in populations as the once divided kingdoms united to create major powers. The relative peace of four centuries allowed great advances in industry and trade, allowing the kingdoms to support their ever-soaring populations.While new wars have broken the peace, it is too late to change the situation.[3]

While a sudden rise of those born with the power to commune with Orboros has increased the Circle believe this to be a reaction the creation of the Protectorate of Menoth by the followers of the Creator of Man. The thread is further magnified by the presence of Menoth’s Harbinger, the living prophet of the god. The rise of a cult of worshipers of Cyriss the Clockwork Goddess known as known as the Convergence of Cyriss has threatened the Circle's control of key ley lines as forces of the Convergence attempt to build their vast foundries at the sites to power their clockwork creations.[4]

In the north the dragon Everblight annihilated the homelands of the Nyss and corrupted the majority of their race bringing them into the service of his Legion. Despite the Circle's attempts to stop it the Legion at the Castle of the Keys, Everblight managed to defeat and devour the athnac of the dragon Pyromalfic. The Circle also became enemies with the Trollkin after Omnipotent Ergonus attempted to assassinate Madrak Ironhide after he refused to aid the Circle due to the struggles of the Trollkin in the Thronwood. The attempt also saw the death of Ergonus. However the loss was mitigated by the Tharn allying with the Circle after Morvahna the Autumnblade reversed the curse limiting the fertility of the Tharn. [3]

In order to defeat Everblight Potent Krueger allied with the dragon Blighterghast and created weave a net of blight along the currents of the ley lines with the dragon alliance. But the failure of the attempt resulted in several of the most vital flows of energy being corrupted by blight. Meanwhile the Wurmwood, an ancient and powerful embodiment of the Devourer Wurm, hungered for the blood of immeasurable sacrifice and conspired to release the Devourer Wurm into Caen. In the savagery of the Wurm’s momentary freedom, the fury of Orboros caused the earth to quake and diverted the flow of great rivers of energy.[4]

Ideology Edit

The blackclads of the Circle believe both the Wurm and Dhunia are manifestations of a single primal and all-pervasive entity they call Orboros. The Wurm is the destructive consciousness of the primal Orboros while Caen and therefore Dhunia represents the tangible physicality of Orboros. The Wurm gains power from the the natural energy flowing through the veins and arteries of Orboros, the lifeblood of Caen. The druids can sense and tap into these conduits, which they call ley lines, and work tirelessly to ensure this supernatural system remains strong. The spread of civilization and the activities of beings like Dragons injures Orboros and the Wurm will its weakened condition resulting in the which could result in the Wurm returning to Caen and unleashing unparalleled destruction, a fate the Circle attempts to avoid. [1]

Organization Edit

Dominions of the Circle Edit

Circle Map MK3

The domains and the territories of the Circle

Despite its relatively small numbers the scope of the Circle Orboros is far-reaching. While all of the wilderness of Caen can be said to be within the blackclads’ purview their domain does not extend much beyond western Immoren. The powers of the blackclads allow them to cross vast distances in the blink of an eye, and the Circle’s ability to gather intelligence and dispatch its agents to where they are most needed gives it a responsiveness and flexibility that is hard to match. In every corner of the wilds with the exception of regions such as the main island of Cryx where it is impossible for them to maintain a presence, sacred sites protected by the blackclads and their allies are present. While the order is largely focused on western Immoren, some members push the frontiers of their domains to explore new territories. Tentative efforts have been made to connect to ley lines beyond the Bloodstone Marches and to far-off lands like the southern continent of Zu, though these regions have yet to be fully integrated into the ley line network. Recent stresses on the ley lines have prompted the Circle’s leaders to escalate efforts to expand into these new regions.[2]

The Circle Orboros has divided western Immoren into three large regions: the Northern Dominion, the Eastern Dominion, and the Southern Dominion. The Northern Dominion includes all of Khador, with its vast mountains and forests, as well as the northern Ordic hills, the Rhulic Mountains, and the Howling Wastes. The Eastern Dominion is an expansive if mostly uninhabited region outside of the Protectorate of Menoth, including the Bloodstone Desert, the Bloodstone Marches, the Black River and its environs, the Rotterhorn, and the Iosan Peaks. The Southern Dominion covers the majority of Cygnar and beyond, including the Gnarls, the Olgunholt in Ord, the Broken Coast and its islands, and the Wyrmwall Mountains. Each of these dominions falls under the oversight of one of the order’s omnipotents and is divided into smaller territories overseen by lower-ranking druids. The allocation of territories forms the basis for the convoluted hierarchy of the Circle Orboros. However the the Circle does not have actual power or authority over the entire dominion. The druids focus on the untamed wilderness regions but also include in their purview areas encompassed by powerful nations and the domains of many hostile competing groups, some more overtly powerful than the Circle Orboros. The blackclads have direct control over small pockets of these territories, usually centered on well-protected sacred sites, secluded villages, and other wilderness places. Most of their holdings relate to the ley line networks they have established. The blackclads rely on connection with uncivilized inhabitants of their territories with each blackclad having hundreds of allies and minions serving them as warriors and pawns.[2]

Hierarchy of the Circle Edit

Circle Hierarchy

The complex power structure of the Circle

Despite its large number of allies and pawns the only true members of the Circle are the blackclads. In ascending order, blackclad ranks are wilder, warder, overseer, potent, and omnipotent. These ranks have a direct bearing on an individual’s responsibilities, and the gulf between successive ranks is vast. All power in the Circle Orboros flows downward from the three ruling omnipotents, who divide all the order’s territories among themselves and safeguard its deepest secrets. Lower-ranking druids are given tasks, responsibilities, and territories as a means of managing the order’s far-flung assets. While in theory the omnipotents have absolute power over their territories, in reality, matters are more complex. [2]

Each rank designates the degree of trust, autonomy and authority a blackclad has been afforded. Wilders have very few responsibilities other than to learn and obey. Lacking autonomy they are only accountable for the very narrow tasks given them by their mentors. Druids who survive wilder training and prove themselves are promoted to warder by the druid’s mentor based on performance, initiative, and growing skill. A warder’s primary function is to do whatever his immediate superiors ask while exercising initiative and sound judgment in the execution of those duties. A warder’s tasks range from short-term missions like rooting out a pernicious enemy or gathering intelligence to longer term duties such as aiding in the training of warbeasts, constructing wolds, or watching over a specific region. Initially a wilder or a newly promoted warder answers only to a single mentor, but most druids are required to balance multiple priorities, including orders from more than one superior. Sometimes a mentor will loan a subordinate to another blackclad as a part of complex exchanges of favors common within the order. Which benefit the junior druid as promotion to higher ranks requires having more than one advocate within the hierarchy. Higher-ranking leaders often approach blackclads who are not their immediate subordinates to make demands. While a blackclad on a mission is not obliged to agree to outside requests, such opportunities to forge new alliances might not return. These favors are one of the primary ways a junior druid can begin to accumulate political power in the hierarchy and the ambitious will try to find a way to fulfill all tasks given them if possible. Senior druids have long memories and will remeber those who have failed or refused them in a time of need. Each blackclad must learn, often through difficult experience, how to prioritize tasks given them by separate and equally demanding masters. Ambitious druids quickly realize the only way to advance is to demonstrate initiative.[2]

Once a senior is convinced of a junior blackclad, a lasting bond is created by offering a portion of his territories in a form of feudalism. A blackclad is expected to manage territories entrusted by his superiors. Accumulation of territories is necessary to become an overseer which requires the supporting testimony of two or more overseers who have worked closely with the candidate, as well as the authorization of two or more potents. However not all overseers supervise territories, druids earn acclaim through other means, such as by leading strike forces into battle or constructing wolds. Overseers are a vital link in the Circle’s chain of command, undertaking difficult missions requiring considerable coordination and personal power. They also manage the sacred sites within their territories and ensure their energies contribute to the ley line network as well as eliminate any enemies that threaten the ley lines or the standing stones controlling their flows. The territories of an overseer are generally larger than what a lone blackclad can patrol, even with the aid of teleportation. This duty may fall to subordinate blackclads or to locals who can act as the druid’s eyes and ears as well as expendable warriors. Overseers are also expected to contribute to the identification, recovery, raising, and mentoring of new wilders. An overseer with growing territories may seek out talented warders to watch over portions of those domains, reinforcing the chain of fealty and command. The accomplishments of junior druids reflect on those they serve, so it is advantageous to have subordinates who distinguish themselves. Ambitious overseers will broaden connections to other senior druids in the hope of continuing to cement their value to the organization. [2]

An overseer can be promoted to the position of Potent with the agreement of at least two ruling Omnipotents. Potents have intense rivalries and often resent the rise of others to that rank as they must share territories, subordinates, and authority with other potents. Lower-ranking druids find it difficult to refuse the orders of potents, even if the requesting potent is at odds with the druid’s mentor or other superiors. Animosities and even open conflict between potents is common. Most conflicts rarely result in open conflict as they use more subtle means, such as by poaching subordinates or persuading the leaders of tribal warriors in a rival’s territories to serve them instead. Bitter rivalries between blackclads can last for decades. The omnipotents intervene if such conflicts threaten their larger goals but a degree of competition and even violence is encouraged since it fosters adaptability and culls the weak.[2]

Forces of the Circle Edit

Major Warlocks Edit

  • Baldur
  • Grayle
  • Kaya
  • Kromac
  • Kreuger
  • Mohsar
  • Morvahna
  • Tanith
  • Bradigus Thorle
  • Una
  • Wurmwood, Tree of Fate & Cassius the Oathkeeper

Warbeasts Edit

Light Warbeasts Edit

Heavy Warbeasts Edit

Gargantuans Edit

Warriors of the Circle Edit

  • Blackclad Stoneshaper
  • Blackclad Wayfarer
  • Bloodweaver Night Witch
  • Druid Wilder
  • Gallows Grove
  • Reeve Hunter
  • Tharn Ravager Shaman
  • Tharn Ravager White Mane
  • Tharn Wolf Rider Champion
  • War Wolf
  • Lord of the Feast
  • Wolf Lord Morraig

References Edit

  1. 1.0 1.1 Iron Kingdoms Unleashed RPG Core Rulebook
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 Forces of Hordes: Circle Orboros Command MK3
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 Hordes Primal MK2
  4. 4.0 4.1 Hordes Primal MK3