Something I'd like to share - Errants

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Something I'd like to share - Errants

Postby Gurkhal » Fri Jul 13, 2012 3:57 am

A little invention of mine that I've decided to add to the Andal culture of Westeros, and which I'd like to share in an humble way to if possible help fellow GMs, is the idea of having knights go out on errants as inspirted by certain stories and examples from these.

The basic idea is that a group of knights, normally rather young, get together and decides to go on an errant. They then, if they get approval from their Houses, set out with some retiners, arms and stuff to do chilverious deeds, win fame, make contacts and in general see the world a little. The party then travells between castles where they ask for lodging and look for oppertunities for glory like hunting down bandits, punishing false knights, participating in tourneys, hunts etc. And this they do for a set ammount of time before returning home with hopefully useful experience gained and contacts won.

The in-game stuff I'm using this for is to allow me to make the characters go out for some adventuring if things gets tied down or I need them to be somewhere far from home. For example I'm thinking about giving my players a chance to fight in the Reyne-Tarbeck Rebellion and make contact with Tywin Lannister, despite being from the southern Reach. And for this end a Florent knight will draw together a group and set out northward for glory and fame.
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Re: Something I'd like to share - Errants

Postby Paedrig » Sat Jul 14, 2012 1:11 am

For me it sounds good. Excactly thus idea of "traveling knights" which fit perfectly in a culture like Westeros and the ideals of knighthood.
Of course there is allways the danger that for some people such a groop is simply a band of hedge knights :wink: . Not a real problem but perhaps a little bit embarrassing for people of wealthier (and more noble) heritage.
Such a time of traveling and "adventure" could you also bring face to face with the (rather grimm) reality of Westeros (hard punishment for unsattisfied or hungry smallfolk, tyrannic lords etc.)

Of course it is sadly that the numbers of dragons you can kill and princess to rescue is much more limited than in the old tales... :lol:

And if you want to give them some additional experience in warfare etc. perhaps they could also participate in some small scale warfare against the clansmen of the mountains of the moon.
Certainly the Arryns can profit from some additional fighters.
Just as an idea...
Last edited by Paedrig on Sat Jul 14, 2012 2:07 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Something I'd like to share - Errants

Postby Kajani » Sat Jul 14, 2012 1:37 am

On the other hand I think this setting only fit in some areas. The North has no idealised picture of knighthood (they have actually no "real knights at all), the Ironmen either, and in Dorne I am not sure. It made sense for the Reach, Riverlands and parts of the other regions (Stormlands, Vale, Westlands, area of King's Landing). They may also meet during their travels other groups of "professional adventurers" – not only hedge knights and sellswords, but also groups of knights which travel from tourney to tourney to made a living by the price for beating another knight in joust.
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Re: Something I'd like to share - Errants

Postby Carriker » Sat Jul 14, 2012 1:48 am

That role in knightly society is usually filled by hedge knights, who are errants. Of course, they're errants without the romanticization, although I'm sure plenty of them paint themselves in that light. "Looking for good deeds to do and wrongs to right" can and does translate to "looking to make a name for myself so I'm accepted into as prestigious of a household as possible."
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Re: Something I'd like to share - Errants

Postby Paedrig » Sat Jul 14, 2012 2:19 am

But the existence of hedge knight does not mean that there is no place for errants of higher birth (and wealth). Even in reality some sort of equivalent for both types existed i think...
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Re: Something I'd like to share - Errants

Postby DaimosofRedstone » Sat Jul 14, 2012 2:57 am

Kajani wrote:On the other hand I think this setting only fit in some areas. The North has no idealised picture of knighthood (they have actually no "real knights at all), the Ironmen either, and in Dorne I am not sure. It made sense for the Reach, Riverlands and parts of the other regions (Stormlands, Vale, Westlands, area of King's Landing). They may also meet during their travels other groups of "professional adventurers" – not only hedge knights and sellswords, but also groups of knights which travel from tourney to tourney to made a living by the price for beating another knight in joust.

I think this would even predate chivalry. Tribal cultures who are prosperous enough had something like it with small (war)bands going out to experience adventures, you know, meet foreign people and kill them.
So i can see this for the North and the Iron Islands and Dorne just as easily.
Northerns can do this without even leaving the North given how large the North is. You could probaby just visit all your relatives and see ALOT of the North. Given how nobles branch out, you could probably see the whole Kingdom just by doing that.
Dorne's and Iron islands adventures would probably be maritime and even more far-reaching (who says Euron One-Eye did not do something like that?).
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Re: Something I'd like to share - Errants

Postby Kajani » Sun Jul 15, 2012 12:39 am

I would call neither the North nore Dorne or even the Ironmen tribal culture. The Ironmen-bands are a different kind, I think - greater in numbers (a shipcrew would be more than 30 people, I guess, and would have a much more structured hierarchy). In Dorne the traditional ground of proofing yourself in war - skirmishing in the borderlands to the Reach and Stormlands - seem deserted in the last years. I have not heard at least for now that fighting between Dornish lords is so common. And in the North... against which foes you will fight? Wildlings which sneak into the north? Or go to the wall fpr a short-term time (if that would be possible - a little bit like the "slave-journeys" in which knights from all over Europe join the Deutschritter in fighting in the Balticum for short campaigns...

But I insist that in reality there were sole or small groups of knights which travel from tourney to toruney to earn a living by defeating other knights in joust.
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Re: Something I'd like to share - Errants

Postby Carriker » Sun Jul 15, 2012 10:27 pm

Paedrig wrote:But the existence of hedge knight does not mean that there is no place for errants of higher birth (and wealth). Even in reality some sort of equivalent for both types existed i think...

On an individual basis, certainly. But really, "Le mort d'Artur" aside, errant knights were out to prove their mettle, so they'd be noticed by a noble and taken into his service. They were there to make a name, so they could cash in on that name, ultimately.
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Re: Something I'd like to share - Errants

Postby Paedrig » Mon Jul 16, 2012 12:08 am

Hey, that is exactly what i have in mind. :D
Of course such a time of 'adventuring' is ment to be only...transitory (perhaps with some few exceptions of knights who did in fact found such an uncertain living appealing).
Hedge Knights i. m. o. are the poor bastards who never get a long term 'job'. But they still might be on the search for it...

Allthough of course in a fantasy world there might be even more place for such knighs than in the real one...
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Re: Something I'd like to share - Errants

Postby Gurkhal » Sat Jul 21, 2012 12:33 pm

Fun to see such interests and may thoughtful comments made. :)
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