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The page covers what little is known by Imperial citizens about the elite Grendel troops - most of this information is not widely known across the Empire - but soldiers and commanders who have fought the Grendel before could be familiar with it.

Players who are interested in getting more involved in monstering at Empire can create their own elite Grendel monster group from one of the four known forces listed below. The list is deliberately limited - the Grendel have weaknesses in their fighting strengths as well as strengths - so it is not possible for players to create a new moridun or similar.

The Moridun

The original Moridun was an ancient fortification that once dominated the skyline of Dubhtraig until it was destroyed in a Grendel civil war hundreds of years ago. The fortress was home to an elite mercenary fellowship - the Brine Devils, an organization that combined military tradition with a growing degree of political power. The Brine Devils hired out elite soldiers to Salt Lords on both sides of the war. After their power base was broken, rather than risk allowing another single powerful moridun to arise, the Salt Lords sponsored the construction of several distinct moriduns. New fortifications were raised, or in some cases converted, to allow them to serve as homes and training camps for the warriors of the moridun. The Salt Lords nurture a fierce rivalry between the moriduns - encouraging each of them to develop their own specialized warrior culture.

Each moridun has its own symbols and imagery and each jealously guards its own traditions and fighting style. As mercenary brotherhoods, their wealth is dependent on their reputation for discipline and loyalty. Soldiers are graded based on their experience and years served, earning wages and privileges accordingly, with the best weapons and armour claimed by the most successful. Raw recruits may have little more than a basic tabard with the moridun symbol on it - but their best troops are always armed and armoured with the most effective equipment the moridun can provide.


The Kraken's Jaws

The Jaws are one of the most feared of the Grendel moriduns, as they capture monstrous creatures, rearing them from young and training them for use on the battlefield. Often such training consists of little more than herding the monster towards the enemy line and releasing it, but it is clear that even this act requires considerable skill and judgement on the part of their handlers. In practice such creatures are exceptionally expensive and few Salt Lords can afford many, but the Jaws have developed remarkable expertise in protecting key personnel and keeping them alive on the battlefield. As a result, when they are not driving one or more of their powerful monsters into battle, they are best deployed protecting key personnel, usually Grendel commanders, ritual teams or similar key objectives.

The symbol of the Kraken's Jaws is the stylized Kraken or squid. Their main use on the battlefield is to protect command groups, magicians, healers - but in some battles they will be paid to bring powerful monsters to the field to try and break the enemy lines.


Note: It is not possible to create a new Kraken's Jaw EMU at this time.

The Stone Born

Stone Born troops are the most heavily armoured soldiers in the Grendel arsenal, favouring steel mail or plate where they can get it. Most Stone Born units can form and hold a defensive shield wall, with the front line trained to keep a tight defensive formation while the back ranks attack with spears or crossbows. More than any other moridun, the Stone Born prize themselves on their discipline and tight unit cohesion - they constantly train and drill to stay one arms length from the shoulders of their comrades. Any member of the unit who breaks formation in practice will be roughly dragged back into line on the day and will face heavy punishment and the censure of their fellow soldiers later.

The symbol of the Stone Born is a stylized crab. Their primary role is to take and hold territory, while other grendel units maneuver around them. The motto of the Stone Born is "We are the wall that turns back the sea".


The Storm Born

All the moriduns include some magicians and herbalists among their number, mostly so that they can heal their own on the battlefield. The Storm Born are unique however, a mercenary brotherhood of ritual magicians - their claim to fame is their mastery of Spring magic. In battle their front line will usually include a handful of capable battle mages accompanied by warriors trained to hold the line and protect the mages. Behind this line is the real power of the Storm Born however - a capable ritual group of Spring magicians who have taken the field ready to wield their magic.

The Storm Born are notorious, not just for their command of powerful destructive magics, but for the relish with which they approach their job. Their magicians delight in unleashing the power of the Spring realm - seemingly with little concern for the cost or the benefits. This leads to them being regarded with some suspicion by other Grendel - the destructive power of Spring magic is undeniable, but the Storm Born are often regarded as wasteful a crime bordering on insanity in the eyes of many.

The symbol of the Storm Born is a stylized shark. In battle Grendel generals will usually deploy them either to achieve specific military objectives - such as destroying a fort - or instead to use their magic in a sequence of punishing attacks designed to break the enemy lines.

The motto of the Storm Born is "Nothing is an absolute reality, all is permitted".

Note: It is not possible to create a new Storm Born EMU at this time.


The Wave Riders

According to legend the Wave Riders are named for their founder who it is claimed was so fleet of foot that she could outrun the waves. Wave Riders disdain the heavy armour favoured by the experienced soldiers of the other moriduns, with most preferring to use mithril or similar. Bucklers are common, larger shields less so, but ultimately the emphasis is on speed. Wave Raiders train so that they can move swiftly even when armed and armoured - so that they can quickly exploit any opening in their opponent's line.

The symbol of the Wave Riders is a stylized dolphin. In battle Grendel generals will try to use them as a rapid response force, able to shift position quickly to dominate the battlefield.

Further Reading