Author: Viktor Juhász, Lead Writer and Content Designer (or World Designer, if you like)
The fantastic world of King Arthur – The Role-playing Wargame is an amalgamation of medieval legend, Arthurian lore, real-historical places and fantastic battlegrounds. It boasts knights, wizards and monsters… plenty of monsters, naturally – but we also needed a whole legion of powerful, alien and fearsome antagonists to face King Arthur. So we turned to Celtic legend and called forth the ancient race of the Sidhe from their realm of twilight and thorns.
In Irish mythology, the Sidhe are the people of the fairy mounds, who live underground and possess great power. In King Arthur – The Role-playing Wargame they are a bit different (again, we are still remixing the mythology), but not by much. In this world, the mystical race of the Sidhe is as old as Britannia itself. They lived here when the land was young and filled with wonders. They walked among the first mortal tribes but were revered, feared, or despised by the mortal children of the new age. As humankind grew stronger, the Sidhe withdrew to the realm of Tir na nÓg, the land beyond mortal understanding. They still existed in legend as the Fair Folk, faeries, spirits, or even gods.
But the creatures of the Sidhe are not the tiny, winged pixies from the movies. Neither are they beautiful elven princesses that knights dream of rescuing, nor leprechauns with bags of gold. The mightiest warriors of the Sidhe are powerful soldiers, kings, wizards, and enchantresses, and their names still haunt the old fables: Cuchullain, Brán, or the Fianna warriors. The Sidhe had their own gods, which the mortals of Britannia now call the gods of the Old Faith – Dana, Lugh, Nuada and many others.
In Tir na nÓg, time flows at a different pace, and for a very long time it was simply beyond mortal reach. The gates leading to Tir na nÓg were once rare, and hidden where the barriers between the two worlds were thin, in ancient stone circles or the darkest glades, and only opened on certain occasions.
However, when King Arthur pulled the magic sword from the stone, the fate and the face of Britannia was changed forever, and these gates began to open wide, slowly but inevitably. The Sidhe warriors, and their lords and ladies returned, and they could now come and go between the worlds as they please.
They are cruel and terrifying, and do not resemble anything that Arthur’s subjects had ever heard of. They kidnap children, lure knights into the night, and place cruel spells on helpless damsels. They love riddles and charms. They step from the deep woods and weave webs of mist around villages. They wear crystal armor because they cannot bear the touch of cold iron. They have two courts, the Seelie and the Unseelie, which are constantly bickering, but which unite against any external threats.
They are the Sidhe and they have plans for Britannia!
This series of posts presents the world-building behind King Arthur – The Role-playing Wargame and King Arthur II and the intervening supplements. This is the fourth installment. You can read the first part here, the second part here, and the third part here.
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