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House Dimir

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House Dimir is Ravnica’s dark secret: behind a facade of respectable messengers and reporters lurks an association of spies and assassins whose existence is barely suspected by the populace at large. Secrecy is both House Dimir’s best weapon and its best defense, and much of the guild’s work is hidden even from other members. Dimir agents leave no trace of their covert activities, warping the memories of witnesses to their crimes and even wiping their own minds to remove any evidence of their completed assignments.

The first guildmaster of House Dimir was a vampire named Szadek, whose organization agreed to serve as Ravnica’s couriers, information brokers, and librarians. But Szadek also used his guild’s expertise at gathering information to build a vast spy network, and before long, the secret operations of the guild vastly outweighed its overt ones. Eventually the guild disappeared into the shadows, and most Ravnicans came to doubt its existence. An immortal entity, Szadek ruled the guild for ten thousand years until he was arrested and killed in the turmoil of the Decamillennial Celebration.

Dimir Characters

Alignment: Usually neutral, sometimes evil

Suggested Races: Half-elf, human

Suggested Classes: Monk, rogue, wizard

If the following sentences describe you, you might enjoy playing a character who belongs to House Dimir:

  • You love subterfuge, intrigue, and deception.
  • You like to play rogues, spies, and assassins.
  • The idea of stealing thoughts instead of treasure has a special appeal to you.
  • You want to deceive your fellow players without necessarily betraying them.

Structure

House Dimir has a clandestine aspect hidden from all but its most important members. The guildmaster, Lazav, and his direct contacts guide and manipulate the covert operations of the guild. Members of House Dimir ultimately receive their orders from this source without having any idea of who issued the order or why. Messages to agents are funneled through thought strands (see “Spell: Encode Thoughts”) and telepathic couriers.

By design, you don’t have much interaction with other members of your guild. You might never meet your primary guild contact face to face, instead receiving assignments and sending reports by way of secret message drops and codes.

Public Agenda

House Dimir is all about secrets and misinformation, even where its own members are concerned. Any given Dimir agent knows of no more than a handful of alleyway contacts and dossier drop spots. One agent knows another only by a code name, or receives communications only at a particular meeting spot at a specific place and time. Every self-proclaimed expert with an opinion on the matter has a theory about the guild’s intentions, and all those guesses about Dimir’s motivations and pursuits contradict each other, frustrating any attempt to get to the truth of things. The public face of Dimir remains inscrutable, which some interpret as the best evidence that the guild’s true plans mean something dire for the Ravnican populace.

 

To House Dimir, knowledge is power. The guild hungers to learn everything it doesn’t already know, especially the weaknesses of its adversaries, and to exploit those weaknesses for its own gain. Conversely, the house holds its own secrets tightly, because it doesn’t want its enemies to turn the tables. The Dimir lurk in the shadows, methodically gathering the knowledge they need to remake Ravnica to their advantage.

 

House Dimir’s progress toward its goals depends on a web woven from meticulously gathered intelligence. Unpredictable behavior by other guilds can destabilize that web. When the Boros take sudden, forceful action inspired by an unexpected burst of zeal, the Dimir can be caught off guard. The Selesnya behave predictably on the whole, but the members of the conclave are so numerous that it can be hard for the Dimir to keep track of their activities. Of all the other guilds, the Izzet and the Gruul concern the Dimir the most; their erratic methods of decision-making, combined with their unflinching approach to danger, can quickly undermine any Dimir strategy designed to contain them.

Assets

You began your career in House Dimir as part of the legion of shopkeepers, librarians, couriers, and traders who maintain the deception that the guild has become civil and tame. Without any exposure to the guild’s more covert activities, you helped to discredit those who believe that the Dimir are plotting to control the city, painting them as delusional conspiracy theorists. But at some point your gifts were recognized and you were invited into the deeper mysteries of the guild. Your training focused on stealth, espionage, and infiltration. As a Dimir spy, you might bring a variety of talents to your work.

 

In your guild role, you engage in surveillance, theft, sabotage, infiltration, and other kinds of espionage. You work in a pocket or sleeper cell, unaware of the identities of most other agents or the guild’s leadership. You might be a rogue of the Thief, Assassin, or Arcane Trickster archetype, a monk of the Way of Shadow, or even a cleric of the Trickery Domain.

 

If you are a spellcaster (perhaps a wizard specialized in the School of Divination, Enchantment, or Illusion), you have the skills needed to join the ranks of the most feared spellcasters on Ravnica: House Dimir’s mind mages. Your basic work and role is the same as any other spy’s, but you can learn to pull thoughts and memories from a person’s mind, use a target’s own thoughts against them, attack your foes’ psyches directly to create delusions, or scour enemy minds clean.

History

Guild Background

Dimir Operative

You're a spy. Secrets and misinformation are your stock in trade. You skulk in the shadows, infiltrate other guilds, and steal the most precious secrets, whether they're written in locked journals or hidden away in someone's mind. Even you might not be aware of all the reasons behind the missions you carry out. Sometimes a mission's sole purpose is to conceal the motivation behind another strike performed in a different part of the city, or simply to spread fear.

As part of your covert work for House Dimir, you maintain a false identity as a member of another guild. You can choose your secondary guild membership or roll to determine it randomly. This secondary guild membership determines a portion of your starting equipment and is also where most of your contacts come from. You infiltrate your secondary guild to learn its's secrets, keep tabs on its activities, or perhaps undermine it from within.

Skill Proficiencies Deception, Stealth
Tool Proficiencies Disguise Kit
Languages One of your choice
Equipment A Dimir insignia, three small knives, a set of dark-colored common clothes, and the starting equipment of the background described for your secondary guild.

Features

False Idenitity

You have more than one identity. The one you wear most of the time makes you appear to be a member of a guild other than House Dimir. You have documentation, established acquaintances, and disguises that allow you to assume that persona and fit into the secondary guild.

Whenever you choose, you can drop this identity and blend into the guildless masses of the city. Consider why/how you’re embedded in the secondary guild. Create a story with your DM, inspired by rolling on the Reason for Infiltration table, or choosing a reason that suits you.

Dimir Guild Spells

Prerequisite:Spellcasting or Pact Magic class feature

For you the spells on the Dimir Guild Spells table are added to the spell list of your spellcasting class.(If you are multiclass, this list is added to each spellcasting class' list.) Table can be viewed in the Spells by Guild Tables

Your magic is meant to be subtle and undetectable, but it might pull shadows or clouds of mist around you as you cast your spells. Using the Encode Thoughts cantrip, you can turn a creature’s thoughts (including your own) into a thought strand that others can potentially read, share, or steal. These thought strands are treated as valuable currency among the Dimir.

Suggested Characteristics

Skilled at infiltration, disguise, and deception, members of House Dimir appear inscrutable. Your true personality and ideals might never manifest, or they might mark you as a quirky member of your secondary guild.

Traits

Dice 1d8 Personality Trait
1I'm good at hiding my true thoughts and feelings
2When I'm in doubt about revealing something, I assume its a secret, and I don't share it.
3I like to sound mysterious, because wisdom hidden grows deeper with time.
4I have no patience with people who get in my way
5I love hearing about other people's nightmares
6Combat is meant to be quick, clean, and one-sided
7I like to stick to the shadows
8I never show my anger, I just plot my revenge.

Ideal

Dice 1d6 Ideal
1Guild My true guild is all that really matters (Any)
2Control.I like pulling the strings (Lawful)
3Secrets. I collect secrets and never reveal them (Any)
4Knowledge. I want to know as much as I can about this city and how it works (Any)
5Independence I value the freedom to pursue my own goals without interference (Chaotic)
6Nihilism I don't believe in anything, and anyone who does is a fool (Neutral)

Bond

Dice 1d6 Bond
1I discovered a secret I can't let anyone else uncover--including my guild superiors.
2I formed a close friendship or romance with someone in the guild I'm infiltrating.
3The Dimir agent who recruited me was unmasked and killed. My revenge on the killers will be thorough and painful.
4I sepnd as much time as I can in the Ismeri Library because I'm certain an information hub operates behind its facade. I want its secrets!
5I'm utterly loyal to my superior in the guild, more than to the guild or its guildmaster.
6Someone has discovered my true identity.

Flaw

Dice 1d6 Flaw
1I like secrets so much that I'm reluctant to share details of a plan even with those who need to know.
2I would let my friends die rather than reveal my true identity.
3I have trouble trusting anyone but Myself
4I have a particular vice that puts all my secrets at risk if I'm not careful.
5I'm pretty sure I've done something horrible that I can't remember because of the guild's mind magic.
6I put too much trust in the people that give me orders.

Contacts

As an agent of House Dimir working undercover, you have limited contacts within your guild. Your relationships within your secondary guild, in the guise of your false identity, are usually more extensive. Roll once on the Dimir Contacts Table, giving you an ally who serves as your contact in Dimir. Then roll twice on the table for your secondary guild. The first roll gives you an ally there, and the second gives you a rival.

How do I fit in?

As a Dimir adventurer, you are a member of the guild’s network of spies, thieves, assassins, and mind mages that lurks behind the facade of the public guild. On the surface, House Dimir presents the appearance of a network of couriers, investigators, media reporters, and archivists, dealing in information and spreading news. But you and your peers trade in secrets. You use secret symbols, runes, and signals to surreptitiously communicate with other Dimir agents, often in plain sight.

Like any good spy, you have multiple identities: your true face as an agent of House Dimir; a guildless identity; and a role as a member of another guild. Within that secondary guild, you might already be on a mission for House Dimir, assigned to spy on the guild, collect information about a person, or recruit another spy from the ranks of the guild. Or that guild could be a launching point for your real mission. Perhaps, for example, you were ordered to infiltrate the Azorius in hopes of gaining access to a notorious inmate in an Azorius prison.

Type
Information Network
Leader
Lazav
Location
Duskmantle
Controlled Territories
Notable Members

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Comments

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18 Jul, 2019 02:17

I sure hope I get to see the other guilds soon!