The Scipii

Ave, traveler, and welcome to the southern reaches of the Roman Republic. We are the Scipii, a branch of the gens Cornelia who is the most powerful family of the ancient Republic, with more of our scions rising to rule as consul than any other family. We have taken blue as our faction color, for the color of the sea we must traverse to reach the heartland of our chosen foe- the Carthaginians. Blue is also the color of loyalty, and we Cornelii Scipones are the most loyal of all factions, and demand the same of our soldiers.

Our Lands

Capua, a large town in Campania, is the Scipii stronghold. It has a militia barracks for the recruitment of hastati, and a governor's villa, but little else beside a wooden palisade. There is not even a proper port, though there are many roads throughout. The famous Via Appia begins in Rome and leads to Capua- a wonderful acknowledgement of our family's power in Rome. Capua is also the site of many Republican storehouses, and of gladiatorial schools, though neither of these affect the game in any way nor are even mentioned.

Messana on Sicilia has the same buildings as Capua, but a much more interesting starting position. She shares the island of Sicily with two other factions- the powerful Greek city of Syracuse, and the small Carthaginian outpost of Lilybaeum. The King of Carthage starts the campaign near Lilybaeum, while the Syracusans are the only other city beside Sparta which can produce or retrain Spartan Hoplites. Deciding which of these factions to make war upon is often the most crucial decision a faction lord must make.

Our Armies

Like all Roman factions, our army will be based initially upon the Camillan legion. We will recruit hastati and principes, with support from velites and equites. Later, when Gaius Marius reforms the armies, we will produce legionary cohorts, praetorians, and urban cohorts like the other Romans.

Our gladiators differ from the other Houses in their armor and fighting style. Our chosen sort is the Mirmillo Gladiator, a heavily armored spearmen. They wear tough and heavy armor, with a fish-shaped helmet that fits wonderfully with our naval character. Like all gladiators, they are sturdy enough to need two killing blows to put one down.

Our Gods

The Scipii honor Vulcan, Saturn, and Neptune, which suit our naval character better than any other choices.

Vulcan is the god of smiths, and cities with temples dedicated to him turn out finer equipment than other cities. We are not sure of the reason behind this. Is it the divine grace of mighty Vulcan that shines upon the smiths and armorers? Or is it the tips and advice in metallurgy given to the smiths by the priests? Regardless, the effect is the same- our weapons and equipment are superior to other similar equipment.

Saturn was the father of Jupiter. He was the King of the Titans, though his son Jupiter overthrew him to become King of the Gods. Like his son, Saturn brings order and stability to cities with his shrines, in the form of a law bonus.

Pantheons originally established in his honor also draw to them groups of incredible warriors. These arcani, though not numerous, are superbly-trained swordsmen who can literally hide anywhere. Verily, their name means 'hidden ones'. Long grass, short grass, desert sands, deep forests- it does not matter. They cover their faces with war masks, and often wield two swords in battle. They have excellent morale, training, and endurance. The only other places in the world where these men gather is in the Awesome Temples and pantheons the Julii build to honor Jupiter, and the awesome temples and pantheons the Brutii build to honor Mars..

Neptune is the third god we worship. He is the god of the sea, and patron of our house. Most men pray to Neptune that their ships may pass safely over his realm, and offer sacrifices that they might not be taken in a storm or lost at sea. We Scipii honor him for his greatness, not out of fear. This makes a difference. For as our worship expands and we prove our devotion by raising higher and mightier temples to the Sea God, he rewards us with ships unlike any other.

The first, which priests of an Awesome Temple of Neptune can command built, it the Corvus Quinquereme. Most Roman factions can build a five-banked galley- the quinquereme. Ours as well. But the Corvus adds a spiked bridge to the ship, which drops down upon the enemy ship. Our marines and soldiers can then cross this bridge to board the enemy vessel- allowing us to use our formidable land power at sea.

If we improve the Awesome Temple to a Pantheon, Neptune grants the Decere, the most awesome warship ever launched. Ten banks of oars per side she has, and enough power to flatten most other warships easily. In a world where size is all, the Decere reigns supreme upon the seas.

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