Usually, my factions are made up of groups. But a faction can also be encapsulated in an individual, someone who may have incidental followers and hangers-on but remains the central threat. Many video game villains serve this role: yes, they may command troops, but even if they acted on their own they'd still cause serious problems.
Telos is a young elf who found success as a warrior. Born with an unusually fierce temperament, he left the small elven enclave in which he was raised early (by elf standards). While most elves serenely appreciate beauty, Telos desires strong emotional experiences, a hunger he feeds in battle as a sword-for-hire.
Between wars, he traveled the world as a sword-for-hire, though he picked at least as many fights as the ones forced on him as a sellsword. Telos wanted to improve as a fighter, and kept challenging strong warriors to intense duels (though typically to the blood).
That lasted until about 50 years ago. Telos's behavior changed; he grew interested in politics and pledged his service to the queen of a respected country. He rose through the ranks rapidly; he's been a general for over 30 years. During that time, he's built relationships with a wide variety of influential individuals in the kingdom.
As a friendly faction, Telos had a simple change of heart 50 years ago. He'd grown so strong he couldn't find a worthy opponent, and decided to improve the strength of something greater than himself: a nation. Realizing the importance of gossip and intelligence, he pushed himself to be better at cultivating relationships, so that he now learns of dangers to the kingdom early through his large network of both legitimate friends and spies.
As a foe faction, 50 years ago Telos found humanoid challengers boring. He decided to set his sights much higher: he would defeat a nation.
Telos picked a strong target, a wealthy and effectively managed kingdom, and worked his way up the ranks. He's been biding his time for 50 years, building a remarkably efficient network of spies and informants. But he will use these to rip the country apart.
- (Friend) When the PCs return to a town after completing a particularly difficult challenge, an older man approaches them. He used to serve under Telos, and still operates as part of his information network. He offers to introduce the PCs to Telos and recommend them to him, saying he's sure to offer them well-paid work.
- (Foe) After the PCs defeat a particularly nasty gang of thieves, they discover a cache of letters between the recently defeated villain and a person known only as "Carbuncle," addressed to an inn at a nearby city. "Carbuncle" is the pseudonym for a shadowy woman who works for Telos as a go-between, surreptitiously funding various criminal organizations that will all be called on in the near future to throw the city into chaos.
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- September 2018
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- Why I love DUNGEONS AND DRAGONS
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- This is pure slice-of-life: QUIET COUNTRY CAFÉ / YOKOHAMA KAIDASHI KIKOU
- News: More STRIKE WITCHES! COWBOY BEBOP and DRAGONBALL in Theaters!
- Why I love the manga of Nausicaa of the Valley of Wind
- The obscure, thoughtful SF OVA SPACE FANTASIA 2001 NIGHTS - Anime Review
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- How to Redeem the SyFy Channel - The Great Debate
- Dubs are made for stupid people - Dramatic Reading
- Why I love Mystery Science Theater 3000
- The pervy fantasy of MAZE (OVA) - Anime Review
- News: GOLDEN KAMUY S2! New Tite Kubo Manga!
- The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao - Book Review
- Otaku no Cooking: Rice burgers
- How do we encourage fans to financially support the anime industry? - The Great Debate
- What fanservice should learn from Tenchi Muyo!
- The perverse yet fascinating WICKED CITY - Anime Review
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- Live stream announcement
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- The Complimentary: Yotsuba&!
- The Anime Western GUN FRONTIER - Anime Review
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- Spring 2018 Anime Preview Guide
- News: New Studio DEEN Anime, MIRAI OF THE FUTURE Premiere, and more!
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- Isao Takahata's Passing and Legacy - The Backstory
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- Harem Anime - The Great Debate
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- Usagi Ringo - Otaku no Cooking
- The epic art house film ROYAL SPACE FORCE: THE WINGS OF HONNEAMISE - Anime Review
- News: Tons of new anime, including BOOGIEPOP, TIGER & BUNNY, CARDFIGHT VANGUARD, and more!
- What does anime do poorly? - The Great Debate
- Macross Anniversary BLOWN - Dramatic Reading
- The surprisingly quiet THE DISAPPEARANCE OF NAGATO YUKI-CHAN - Manga Review
- News: Lots of New Anime Announced, including MAMORU OSHII and IKUHARA! Plus KISHIMOTO's next work!
- Why screwball comedies so popular in anime? - Great Debate
- Evangelion's Last 2 Episodes Will NEVER Be Released - Dramatic Reading
- The experimental weirdness of THE CHOCOLATE PANIC PICTURE SHOW - Anime Review
- News: New Anime Announced! Mari Okada's First Film Released! 2 Big Anime Films on Netflix!
- Why is there so much fantasy anime now? - The Great Debate
- Mononoke Hime DISSED - Salty Waters (Dramatic Reading)
- The post-apocalyptic slice-of-life comedy GIRLS' LAST TOUR - Anime Review
- News: New Anime Coming and Licensed, details on SWORD ART ONLINE live-action, and more!
- Internationalization of Anime - The Great Debate
- How can fans grow anime fandom? - Great Debate
- Bandai in America - Salty Waters (Dramatic Reading)
- 2018 Winter Anime Preview Guide
- News: New Anime Announced! MONSTER MUSUME almost sold out in UK! FMA live-action on NETFLIX!
- News: FREE in US theaters! New BAR HUNTER franchise! CELLS AT WORK gets an anime!
- How can the anime industry get more Western fans? - The Great Debate
- Anime Stagnation - Salty Waters (Dramatic Reading)
- The ecchi action comedy CUTIE HONEY (1973) - Anime Review
- News: New MIYAZAKI! TANYA THE EVIL movie! SILENT VOICE in US theaters Feb 2! GODZILLA!
- The Great Debate: Why is the manga "always better"?
- Salty Waters: Thumbs Down on Akira and Ghost in the Shell
- The absurd slice-of-life comedy A SISTER'S ALL YOU NEED - Anime Review
- News: Anime Strike Shuts Down! New TIGER AND BUNNY and LOVE LIVE SUNSHINE! VIOLET EVERGARDEN dates!
- Questions and Answers for 2017
- The avant garde symbolism of Mamoru Oshii's ANGEL'S EGG - Anime Review
- News: CRUNCHYROLL simulcasts! SENTAI licenses TAKUNOMI! New NON NON BIYORI!
- Salty Waters (Dramatic Reading): Monster Pocket Mind Control
- A novel about the anime industry: ANIME SUPREMACY! - Novel Review
- News: HOSODA's films streaming! Live-action ONE PIECE! New CUTIE HONEY!
- Salty Tears: Mortal Sin
- Moebius's psychedelic space epic WORLD OF EDENA - Comic Review
- The sweet online romance RECOVERY OF AN MMO JUNKIE - Anime Review
- News: Simulcasts! MAMORU HOSODA's next film! VIOLET EVERGARDEN Jan. 10!
- Dramatic Reading of Old Anime Posts: 10 Years After
- Anime Soup Premiere! Weird clips from this week's anime
- Re:Monster vs. Reincarnated as Slime vs. How to Build a Dungeon volumes 1 - Manga Review
- News! MIYAZAKI's next film, new CARDCAPTORS on CR, BATMAN NINJA, and more!
- News: Live-Action FMA, KENSHIN Creator Possessed Child Pr0n?, POKÉMON movie makes $2.4M, and more
- The D&D comedy RUNE SOLDIER LOUIE - Anime Review
- Dramatic Reading of Old Anime Threads: Blind Faith in Disney
- Dramatic Reading of Old Anime Threads: Missing Millions
- The beautiful arthouse film THE TALE OF PRINCESS KAGUYA - Anime Review
- News: Anime at the Oscars, CR adds Star Blazers and gets hacked, and more
- News: Cameron's ALITA! DEADPOOL is PIKACHU!
- How to Run Stranger Things in The Whispering Road
- The adult competence of BLADE RUNNER: BLACK OUT 2022 - Anime Review
- News! More on HAYAO MIYAZAKI's next film! Possible SATOSHI KON adaptation! More FREE!
- The comedic horror of GEGEGE NO KITARO - Manga Review
- Why I Stopped Watching RE:CREATORS - Anime Review, eps 1-9
- A Dramatic Reading of an Old Anime Thread: More Violence
- Anime news! Industry sales high, Haruhi Suzumiya back at CR, and more
- Boogiepop Phantom vs. Serial Experiments Lain: How Similar Are They?
- Dramatic Reading of Old Anime Threads: I Resent Akira
- The historical comedy NINJA GIRL AND SAMURAI MASTER - Anime Review
- News: New Kawamori Anime! 30 New Anime From Netflix! More!
- A Dramatic Reading of Old Anime Threads: Armageddon
- Fall 2017 Anime Preview Guide! 21 Anime!
- News! New ASHITA NO JOE and MAJOR! LITTLE BUSTERS visual novel in America!
- Why I Stopped Watching Re:Creators (review of eps 1-9)
- News! INDEX! MAZINGER! MY-HIME!
- December 2017