KS Update #26 Factions and the Arcanotech Cabal Sneak Peek
20 days ago
– Tue, Jun 07, 2022 at 08:19:37 PM
Every day we’re turning in and editing more and more content, both fantastic images and evocative words. The setting and mechanics are really coming together in a way that will highlight post-apocalyptic play in 5e. One of the ways we’re detailing the Weird Wastelands setting is by having several factions that your characters can interact with. Factions are something we’ve talked about on the WebDM channel and our Patreon (see the end of this post for resources).
One of the factions in Weird Wastelands is the Arcanotech Cabal. The world may have been turned to a wasteland, but the Arcanotech Cabal strives to use the magic that destroyed society to create a new and better life for...well...at least for themselves!! Today we’re shining a spotlight on this weird and nuanced faction:
Alignment: Chaotic Neutral
Organization: Decentralized mageocracy of semi-autonomous technomancer collectives
Motto: “Our mastery of arcanotech will surpass the glories of the past.”
The Arcanotech Cabal is a group of loosely allied technomancers, artifice-wizards, and alchemists dispersed into small collectives that prize their autonomy even as they pursue the shared goal of rebuilding civilization. Distant memories of the apocalyptic magical wars of the past cause the Cabal’s members to keep their identities secret and communicate with each other sparingly through proxies. If they ever fully unified, they would outnumber every other wasteland faction, but the Cabal’s internal divisions pose a serious hurdle to unification and their efforts to rebuild.
Members of the Cabal devote themselves to uncovering the arcane mysteries of the pre-apocalypse and using those resources to build a new civilization. They are secretive and guard their knowledge closely, even from other members. When travelling the wastelands, they pose as pilgrims or salvagers, so as not to draw unwanted attention to their activities.
The Arcanotech Cabal occasionally seek alliance with the Fellowship, especially when their goals are aligned. They also work with the Enduring Aristocracy, mainly because the undead nobles give the Cabal access to arcanotech resources. The Cabal is enemies with the Blood Harpy Legion because the Legion sees their use of arcanotech as too dangerous, and the Infernal Recruiters because the Cabal opposes their looting of wasteland treasures and enslavement of souls.
They can access nearly any non-legendary magic item given enough time and materials. Magic items created by the Cabal are arcanotech devices .
Technomancers and Arcanotech magi carry multiple arcanotech devices and at a minimum will have bracers of defense and a wand or staff to defend themselves with when encountered. Some non-spellcasting members of the Cabal wield magic weapons or drink the various potions provided to them by Cabal alchemists.
Cabal members tend to be living humanoid spellcasters, but there are some undead members who keep their unliving nature hidden. A fair number of members are not spellcasters and serve as the main field agents and informants of the Cabal’s spellcasters. The Cabal maintains large numbers of constructs which they primarily use to guard their hidden fortress-workshops.
Here are some notable members of the Arcanotech Cabal.
• Gorasto (NE): A cunning half-orc arcanotech magus, Gorasto is the most influential leader in the Cabal and made the recovery of lost arcanotech wonders of the Last City of MAN popular with many other members. He maintains a network of loyal spies and informants unaffiliated with the Cabal and is accompanied by a retinue of demon-bound constructs and ambitious apprentices. Gorasto’s influence is the driving force behind the Cabal’s tendency towards division and secrecy as his many former students seek his approval at the expense of their peers.
• Lagren Tung (CN): Lagren is an unorthodox technomancer of unknown ancestry who leads a retinue of similarly independent-minded cabalists. They are at the center of a rapidly growing movement within the Cabal to oppose Gorasto’s secretive methods and use of bound demons. Lagren claims descent from the Cabal’s legendary founder, Barbarsus, Master of the Polyptych Schema and has many agents scouring the wasteland for their ancestor’s lost spellbook.
• Techanicus Supportus (LG): Techanicus is a priest and technomancer who leads a group of devoted followers on a holy mission of peace in the trenches of the Colossus of Rust. He claims to have received instructions from an ineffable clockwork god to bring peace to the warring constructs and incorporate the territory into the Republic of Autons & Man. Techanicus also claims that this mysterious god gave him the orb of peace, an arcanotech device capable of influencing constructs.
Arcanotech Cabal Creatures
The Arcanotech Cabal Creatures table presents a few creatures likely to work for or with the faction.
Arcanotech Cabal Creatures
1/8 Guard (MM)
1/2 Lookout (scout, MM)
1/2 Hired goon (thug, MM)
1 Field agent (spy, MM)
1 Scrap golem soldier (animated armor, MM)
2 Geas-sworn bodyguard (veteran, MM)
3 Remote viewer (will-o-wisp, MM) *
6 Technomancer (mage, MM)
7 Shield guardian (MM)
12 Arcanotech magus (archmage, MM)
13 Voltaic titan (storm giant, MM) *
16 Iron golem (MM)
*Creature type changed to construct
Arcanotech Cabal Spells
The majority of Arcanotech Cabal spellcasters practice technomancy, as described in the technomancy arcane tradition in chapter 1. Technomancers are the most common caster type in the Arcanotech Cabal. They use custom-crafted arcanotech devices to cast their spells and are almost always encountered alongside small constructs of their own creation.
A technomancer who has mastered technomancy is known as an arcanotech magus, a title for which the true meaning has long since been lost but remains an honor. Most arcanotech magi are reclusive, but some use their knowledge and influence to gather a large following of apprentices.
At the GM’s discretion, NPC technomancers and arcanotech magi may use the class features of the Technomancy arcane tradition.
Arcanotech magi and technomancers have their own sets of prepared spells which you can use instead of the default spells. Spells marked with * can be found in the spells section of chapter 1.
1st – grease, magic missile, repair object*, shield
2nd – arcanotech communion*, levitate, shatter
3rd – assemble scrap golem*, dispel magic, blink
4th – phasic beam*, resilient sphere
5th – wall of force
Arcanotech Magus Spells
At will – magic missile, mirror image
1st – color spray, fog cloud, grease, repair object*, shield
2nd – invisibility, quick fix*, scorching ray
3rd – assemble scrap golem*, dispel magic, fly
4th – fabricate, machine spirit*, phasic beam*
5th – animate objects, creation, wall of force
6th – chain lightning
7th – project image
8th – control weather
9th – prismatic wall
Arcanotech Cabal Random Encounters
Use the Arcanotech Cabal Encounters table to generate random encounters with the Arcanotech Cabal. Roll 2d6 once, and read the entries straight across to generate the creatures encountered and activity they’re engaged in, or roll for each column for more variety.
Arcanotech Cabal Encounters
WebDM Faction Resources
Jim Talks about the Arcanotech Cabal in the WebDM episode on Creating and Running Factions: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9-f1qxCuv4A
Download the Web DM's Annotated Index for Running Factions in 5e D&D for free on Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/posts/58823471
The next Kickstarter update will be July 6th or earlier.
Schedule Correction. We’re still moving toward a community PDF delivery in August; and the final PDF delivery is scheduled for October with physical deliveries starting in March of ’23.
We appreciate your patience and continued support!
- Web DM and 2CGaming