The Knight is more than just a warrior, the Knight is honour, courage, loyalty and duty in mortal form. Knights are martial specialists, understanding the essence of fighting perfectly, but they also know that a sword is better in sheathed than used for dishonourable purposes. Knights are loyal to their lords and masters and also to their comrades; there are those who have once been part of an order and who no longer have a master and also knights who have learned the fighting style of a particular order but have never been officially inducted into it. Some knights work as mercenaries and sell their services to the highest bidder, but even these women and men have a deep moral code and a commitment to their companions.
Like all heroes, knights stand out from ordinary people because of their skill with weapons, their determination and courage. In many militias, ordinary soldiers are only lightly trained and armed and the knight is a special and highly skilled warrior in comparison. In this section you will find several Knightly Orders to choose from, and each one will be accompanied by Knightly deeds which are the specialist weapon based abilities that are unique to the order. Once you have selected an order it cannot be changed, but as a base class a Knight can choose a caster type to add to the class at 3rd level.
Creating A Knight
When you are creating your knight character, you might want to consider how they came to be an adventurer. There are several ways a member of a knightly order might come be adventuring Aestis with others. Have they been sent on a secret mission by their order and fallen in with companions along the way or have they chosen to leave their order behind for a life on the road. If so, was it that easy? There might be unfinished business with the character’s masters and mentors. If the character is a Jaraki, Half Firg, Half Fey or a Chorale, how did they find themselves fighting with honour for the knightly orders of the human world?
One thing above all else that distinguishes a knight from a common footsoldier, brigand or sellsword is the Knightly Order that they belong to. Across Aestis there are countless orders, some well known, others obscure. Each has its own distinctive fighting style and preferred weapons of choice; some Knights are active members of the order, wearing its livery and acting under its orders. Others are former members who retain the weapon skills they have learned but who adventure on their own. Others still are men and women who have been taught how to fight in the style of a particular order but who never actively joined it. The Arclands Player’s Companion features four of the best known orders whose martial prowess inspire others with awe and fear. They are the Axe Guards of Hothis, the Ember Legion, the Honourable Company of Trailkeepers and the Hammerborn. Once a knight has joined their order, they cannot transition into another one or learn their deadly skills. Each knight gains the first deed of their order at Level Two which is their Order Training.
Knights are highly trained and skilled warriors who belong to a specific order. Their duties can vary depending on the order they belong to. Some knights may be tasked with protecting a specific region or city, while others may be sent on missions to defend the interests of the order. They are also often called upon to participate in battles and wars, using their training and expertise to fight for their cause.
The mindset of a knight is often one of duty and honor. They are typically highly disciplined and committed to serving their order and its ideals. Many knights are motivated by a sense of purpose, and are willing to make great sacrifices for the greater good. They believe in a code of conduct, and strive to embody virtues such as courage, loyalty, and integrity.
In an adventuring party, a knight can be an invaluable member. Their training and expertise in combat make them powerful fighters, able to hold the line against enemy forces. They are also typically well-trained in tactics and strategy, making them valuable leaders in battle. Their leadership and discipline can also help to keep the party organized and focused during their adventures.
Knights learn their expertise with a weapon by going through rigorous training and practice with the order they belong to. The training usually begins at a young age, and is focused on mastering specific weapons and techniques. The training will also encompass other aspects of knighthood such as horseback riding, combat tactics, endurance, and strength training. Knights will also typically spend a great deal of time studying and practicing martial techniques, both alone and in groups.
In Arclands, a knight's order is a crucial aspect that sets them apart from other warriors. Membership in an order is a lifetime commitment and the skills learned in an order will be specific and unique to the order. They must adhere to their order's Code of Conduct, which may vary from order to order, but all are strict and demanding. With their skills, discipline, and dedication, knights are some of the most powerful and respected warriors in Arclands, inspiring awe and fear in those who would stand against them.
Humility and Honour
Knights from orders such as the Hipostic Knights, who place a great emphasis on humility, may view their role as one of service to their community, rather than as a path to fame and glory. They may avoid the adulation of others, seeing it as a distraction from their duty to protect and serve their people. Instead, they focus on performing their duties with integrity and humility, putting the needs of others above their own desires for recognition or fame.
Other knights may view their role as one of service to their lord or country. They may see themselves as protectors of the realm, and view their role as a sacred trust that requires humility and sacrifice. They may be called upon to fight in wars and defend the weak, and while they will be honored for their deeds, they may not seek glory or recognition and instead focus on their duty.
Some knights also believe that humility is essential to become a better warrior, as overconfidence can make them overestimate their abilities, leaving them unprepared for the realities of battle. They may view humility as a necessary check on their own ego, and make it part of their daily discipline, humbling themselves through practices such as self-reflection and meditation, helping them keep their focus on the task at hand and stay grounded on the importance of their role.
In conclusion, the idea of humility can manifest in different ways depending on the order, but it's an important aspect for many knights, as it allows them to stay grounded and focused on their duty as protectors and servants.
The Call to Adventure
There can be a variety of reasons that lead a knight to leave their order and embark on a life of adventuring with a party of companions. Some knights may feel that they have fulfilled their duty to their order and are seeking new challenges and experiences. Others may find that their order is no longer able to provide them with the sense of purpose and fulfillment that they once had, and they may feel the need to find a new calling.
Another common reason that knights may choose to adventure is that they have become disenchanted with the politics and infighting within their order, and they may see adventuring as a way to escape the intrigue and backstabbing that can often occur within an order. They may also be seeking to prove themselves as a worthy knight outside of the order's boundaries and gaining more prestige, wealth and recognition.
Another reason that a knight may choose to adventure is that their order has been disbanded, or the local lord or ruler has given them a task that takes them out of the region, this way they can have a more noble purpose in their journey.
When a knight joins a party of companions, they may find themselves working with individuals who have vastly different backgrounds and skillsets. These companions may include warriors, mages, rogue and other adventurers, who may not share the same code of conduct or training as the knight. The knight may find themselves struggling to reconcile their sense of duty and honor with the more pragmatic approach of their companions, but they may also learn new ways to think and act, and they can help to keep the party focused and organized while they all work towards a common goal.
The knight's experience and combat skills can also make them a valuable addition to any adventuring party, as they can use their training to protect the party and lead them in battle. They may also use their experience to help teach and mentor the other members of the party, passing on the skills and training that they have learned to help them become better warriors and adventurers.