View Full Version : The Spy Legion [Affiliation, Updated]

2006-08-29, 11:20 PM
I just got PHBII, and this is my first attempt at an affiliation. Comments?

EDIT: Changed Titles, Benefits, and Duties and some of flavor text

Legion XVII:
Symbol: The symbol of Legion XVII is the Atathian phoenix, rising from flames, with the numerals XVII and a picture of an owl underneath. Typically, the phoenix, numerals, owl, and flames are gold while the background is red.
Background, Goals, Dreams: The Legion XVII, or the Owl Legion, was founded early in Atathia’s history as the need was recognized for individuals of various studies, backgrounds, and talents to complete difficult and secret missions. The Legion now has untold numbers of adventurers, spies, and mercenaries completing missions labeled as ‘delicate’ by the Atathian military. Granted huge resources, the Owl Legion attempts to further the cause of Atathia through whatever means it deems necessary.
Members: Most members of the Legion XVII are Atathian by birth, although a large minority are from outside the nation. Many members possess some skill in stealth; this is not required however, as the Legion has plenty of things to do for non-stealthy types. Those who fail missions repeatedly and prove to be a liability are often asked to leave, or, in particuliar cases, sent on a suicide mission.

Type: Spy Ring
Scale: 15 (continental/empire)

Affiliation Score Criteria:
Character Level +1/2 PC’s Level
Completes Mission +2
Fails Mission -2
Adventures with a Member +1
Humiliates an Enemy of Atathia +2
Razes Stronghold of Enemy of Atathia +8
Failure to Report for Duty in Times of War -20

Titles, Benefits, Duties:
Despite being far outside the norm of Legions, the Owl Legion kept the ranks and symbology of the normal Atathian legions.
0-3 No affiliation
4-8 Legionary: The Legion recognizes you as a member. In addition, should Atathia go to war, the member is expected to report for duty; this is true for all ranks.
8-15 Decorated Legionary: The Owl Legion recognizes your achievements, and in addition to the ceremonial medals, rewards you with the ability to requisition one first-level potion or scroll per month. Technically, Decorated Legionary is not a rank, but rather a term for a Legionary who has earned several medals.
15-20 Primus: The Owl Legion promotes you to Primus and the ceremonial helmet that goes with this rank. The helmet is shaped like a Legionnaire’s helmet, but has a strip of red horse hair running from front to back. When wearing this helmet or another in a similar style (i.e. must be shaped like a Legionary's helmet and have the red horse hair), you gain a +2 to Intimidate checks. Once promoted, this bonus applies to your new helmet.
21-29 Centurion: The Owl Legion promotes you to Centurion, presenting you with the ceremonial helmet and the ability to receive information from Atathian intelligence reports, allowing Gather Information checks across the continent of Hugaethin without leaving your current position. The helmet is much like the Primus's helmet, except that the band of hair is horizontal.
30+ Marshal: The Owl Legion rewards you with the ceremonial helmet and cape and the ability to borrow one item of up to 30,000 gp value for 2d4 days from the Legion’s stores. While gone, the capital of the Legion decreases by 1. The helmet has a horizontal band of golden horse-hair, and the cape is red.

Executive Powers: Raid, Shadow War, Terrorize

Fax Celestis
2006-08-30, 12:42 AM
It looks pretty solid, but the benefits for membership seem kinda...lacking. At rank 11, I get a potion of cure light wounds once a month. Whoopie. In order to get there, I've got to be at least sixth level (for a +3), and have completed four missions (for +8). That's a lot. Perhaps more grades would fix that.

2006-08-30, 09:02 AM
Just some thoughts concerning the fluff:

Why is the symbol a 'Phoenix', but the alternate name, the 'Owl' Legion? What's the reason for the pseudo-Roman terminology?

Are there other Legions? The ranking system also seems kind of odd to me, as 'Praetorian' is not really a rank. Is this to do with another ordering system (The French Foreign Legion or something?). There's a lot of potential for ranks here, Optio, Tribune, Legate, Comes, Dux, etc...

Interestingly, 'Legionnaire' is not conventionally appropriate in such a system, 'Legionary' is apparently acceptable.

2006-08-30, 09:43 AM
Firstly, thanks for the input.

Stat Wise: Broke up Praetorian into Decorated Legionary and Primus. Decorated Legionary still keeps potion thing, but Primus now gets a bonus to Intimidate checks when wearing the helmet of appropriate rank. Are the benefits still too low?

Fluff Wise: The pseudo-Romanology is intentional; the Atathians are psuedo-Romans. Fixed it to make it more Roman like, so it doesn't confuse during the inevitable comparison.

The 'Owl' is there in adition to the Phoenix because the Phoenix is Atathia's symbol, and the Owl is the Legion's. I was under the impression that Legions (or cohorts or something) had a representative animal. In addition, added an Owl under the numbers; the Owl's there in addition to the phoenix now.

I realized Praetorian wasn't a rank, but had nothing else to call it at the time. Note that the structure of the Atathian army isn't necessarily the structure of the Roman army, so I played around with it a bit. Also, realized what I replaced it with, Primus, wasn't a rank, but it lacked the historical connotations.

Fax Celestis
2006-08-30, 01:40 PM
That's a little better, yes.

2006-08-31, 03:09 PM
Yes, a reasonable improvement. Perhaps it would be useful if you were to link or present here information regarding the usual ordering of the Atathian Army.

Indeed, there is evidence that various Roman Legions had animal emblems associated with them, but not only animal emblems. All of the Legions raised by Caesar apparently had the Bull as their emblem. A lot depends on the period under discussion, but probably from 104 BC and certainly during the Imperial period, Legions would generally carry an Eagle (Aquila) as their primary standard, which I suppose would be equivalent to the Atathian Eagle.
The Legion's emblem was seperate from this standard and carried seperately. They were carried by detachments, but I'm not clear on their role in the ordering of the complete Legion, perhaps they were Cohort standards? I'll look into it when I have the time.
A Legion might also carry an image of the Emperor. Each Century apparently also had a standard, but I don't know if the emblem of the Legion appeared on this.


I know at least some of the information at this article is dubious, but it seems generally accurate. RomanArmy Talk is the best place on the web to find out about this sort of thing.