Monday, September 16, 2013

The Order of the Knights of Sarmatia, a company for In Her Majesty's Name

By now most of you have probably seen trailers of what could be my obsession for the next year: The Order:1886. It combines elements of two of my favorite genres: Victorian Science Fiction and Arthurian Legend. Since seeing it I was inspired to put together a Company drawn from a Knightly order. What follows is a description of the order stats for playing it in In Her Majesty's Name.

The Order of the Knights of Sarmatia, or more simply The Sarmation Order, is a semi clandestine order of knighthood in England that dates back to the Roman Occupation. It is a Palatine Order of Knighthood in that it has Royal authority when it comes to elevating its members to Knightly status. The Knight Commander of the Order holds a seat on the Queen’s Privy Council and takes commissions from the Queen or Prince Arthur, Duke of Connaught who is himself a member of the order.

The Order has long been charged with defending the realm from all threats to the Empire beyond the capabilities of more mundane authorities. Their membership is pulled primarily from the military with no regard for rank or station beyond what each candidate’s prowess earns him within the order.

Aside from its military prowess the Order has a long history of being a technological innovator as well. Its knights have their pick of the latest in battlefield technology and its artificers wield such strange technological power that they are often labeled as warlocks or wizards by the less enlightened.

Sarmatian Order units are called Lances. A single lance can number from as few as four to as many as a dozen, depending upon the current strength of the Lance. The Lance is a permanent assignment. Transfers from one to another are unheard of. Members are promoted up from the ranks. The only time a knight would take leave of a position in a Lance would be upon promotion to the rank of Knight Captain where he would be given command of his own Lance. His squire would be the only member of the old Lance that would accompany him to his new office. If the squire warranted knighthood he would become the Knight Marshall of the Lance and its second in command.

Artificers are the exception to this rule.  Artificers go where they please. Most of them have retired from the martial life after serving as a Knight Captain or Knight Marshall. The Artificers spend most of their time at the Order’s castle in Colchester working on new technological developments. If an Artificer has chosen to accompany a Lance it is usually because he is doing field research or is on the hunt for some purported technological marvel created by an enemy of the realm.

The Lance is commanded by a Knight Captain who typically favors close combat weapons that allow him to keep primarily focused on commanding the Lance. He may on occasion as missions dictate take up an arc rifle if he feels the need for more firepower. The Knight Captain also wears an SRC Breastplate for protection.

Second in command will be the Knight Marshall. In a fight he usually carries the weightiest of weapons. Typically this will be the Maxim-Congreve Combination Weapon, nicknamed The Siege Perilous. If close combat is the order of the day a Two Handed sword may be more in order.

The Artificer, when in the Lance’s company, offers support with his vast knowledge of technology. The Artificer’s greatcoat hides a treasure trove of technological devices and gadgets that some would consider them magic. In battle they have been known to wield the great sword with the same skill as a Knight Marshall.

Knights and Dames are at the top of the list of fighters the Order employs. Rarely will there be more than two knights in a Lance. Knights are skilled with most weapons but their favorite tends to be the Caladbolg combination rifle. They wear Brigandine armor and usually carry a sword and/or pistol as well.

There can never be more Squires than Knights in a Lance. Each knight takes but one squire into his service at a time. Squires are armed much as knights.

Warders are the Lay members of the Order and are usually the only members accepted without some history of Military service. Warders are often recruited from police agencies or be recommended from the civilian population by a member of the order. Warders are usually armed with a nightstick and a shotgun and wear a lined coat for protection.

Weapons specific to the Order
Borchardt C-95 Pistol SV +1, Range 12”, PM -1 Cost: 4, 1 hand

Martini-Congreve Caladbolg Combination Rifle Cost 11, 2 hands
Rifle: SV +2, Range 18”, PM -1
Underslung Shotgun: SV +2, Range 12”, PM +0/-1

Maclean-Congreve Siege Perilous Combination Weapon Cost 46, 4 hands
Machine Gun: SV +4, Range 24”, PM-2
Underslung GL: SV +2, Range 12”, PM -1
                3 grenades of any type

Additions and modifications available:
  • A Knight Captain may replace his pistol with an Arc Pistol (+4 points).
  • A Knight Captain may purchase an Arc Rifle (+9 points)
  • A Knight Captain, Knight Marshall or Knight/Dame may replace his pistol with a C-95 Pistol (+1 point).
  • A Knight Marshall may purchase the Strongman Talent (+5 points) and/or the Tough Talent (+5 points)
  • A Knight Marshall may replace his Sabre with a Large Sword (+1 point) or a pistol (+3 points)
  • A Knight Marshall may replace his Pistol with a Siege Perilous Combination Weapon if he has taken the Strongman talent (+25 points). The Knight Marshall may not equip both Greatsword and Siege Perilous.
  • The Artificer may replace his sword with a Large Sword (+2 points).
  • The Artificer may replace his Lined Coat with a Faraday Coat (+4 points)
  • Knights and Dames may replace their Carbine with a Caladbolg Combination Rifle (+6 points)
  • Knights and Dames may replace their Pistol with a Sabre (+1 point) or a C-95 Pistol (+1 point)
  • Squires may replace their Pistol with a Sabre (+1 point)
  • Any figure other than a Warder may purchase the Marksman Talent (+5 points)
  • Warders may purchase a nightstick (+3 points)

There you have it. Thanks for watching and I hope to have some painted figures to show you soon.

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