Welcome to the
Palantir Quest Campaign Site!
This is a write up of our Middle-Earth
roleplaying campaign. It is heavily based upon the ICE
MERP supplement 'Palantir Quest', but with significant
changes to the published adventure, mostly to get rid
of things I didn't like. I've tried to add a more epic,
world-spanning plot 'over-arch' to what is a pretty
linear adventure, although I really like the core plot
premise: That the Palantir stones of Arnor, two of the
most powerful magical items left in Middle-Earth in
the Fourth Age, have re-surfaced and our heroes have
been chosen to recover them. At times I stuck closely
to the published adventure, but I also re-wrote whole
sections and have extended it a lot. In many places
I've relied upon other ICE MERP modules for things like
maps of locations and NPC stats.
I shall post each chapter one at a
time. There are 36 chapters in all, so it will take
some time. They are divided into three books (of course!).
The chapters roughly divide into the game sessions we
played. I have also included an overview of the Chronicle
(below), mostly adapted from ICE's Palantir Quest itself,
to give readers the same background knowledge that I
had as referee. Also each player character has his own
character sheet, illustration and background. The character
sheet is as the PC finished, not as they started. I'll
try to include sheets for the major NPC's as well.
The group consisted of the referee
(me) and 5 or 6 players and has been playing since January
2001, meeting about once a month, generally in Nottingham
or Stoke-on-Trent (in the UK). We started the campaign
using the Middle-Earth RPG rules but immediately changed
over to Decipher's LotR RPG when it was released in
I hope you enjoy our Chronicle and
please come back to read the next chapters as I post
It is fourth age (F.A) 12. The War
of the Ring is over, Sauron is defeated and Aragorn
rules Gondor as King Elessar. Gondor is growing in power
again, the cities and towns are being rebuilt, and trade
with distant lands is increasing. With the new King
comes justice and relative peace. But, whilst the great
threat of the Dark Lord is gone, many servants of evil
survived his destruction. With their black hearts thirsting
for vengeance, they remain a danger to all the free
The King rules in Minas Tirith aided
and advised by Gondor's Council of Seers, of whom the
High Seer is a man named Tarquillan. Old, very wise,
but also blind, Tarquillan is the guardian of Gondor's
only remaining Palantir stone. Safe at the top of the
tower of Ecthelion, the Orthanc stone (recovered by
Gandalf from Saruman) is the only Palantir stone which
remains of the original seven. The other six have been
lost in wars or through the plotting of the enemy -
that is until now!
Whilst using the Palantir stone to
observe the rebuilding work at Tharbad (Tarquillan can
see in his minds-eye using the stone), the High Seer
detected a powerful presence far to the north. Pushing
the stone to its range limits he scanned for the source.
He saw a brief, hazy image, then the strain took its
toll and he collapsed unconscious.
When he was revived Tarquillan became
sure he had felt the power of another Palantir stone.
Aided by his talented apprentice, Elegar, Tarquillan
set about researching ancient lore in the royal library.
There he discovered the tale of how the two Palantir
stones of Arnor (the Anuminas stone and the larger,
more powerful, Amon Sul stone) has been lost in the
Icebay of Forochel along with the last king of Arthedain
(see the Unfinished Tales for full details of this history).
Tarquillan and Elegar also discovered
reference to a spell for locating items of great power,
contained within a book called the Diary of Mistan.
Research revealed that the diary was stored in one of
the royal libraries of Arnor. If it could be found and
the spell cast, then the Palantir might be located and
Sure that the two stones had somehow
resurfaced, Tarquillan reported his findings to the
King and a plan to recover them was made.
The re-emergence of the Palantir stones
not only interests the King of Gondor and his Seers.
There are others, learned in ancient lore, who also
have the power to use the stones. One such man is Taladhan
the Black (as he is called today), who was once Alatar
the Blue, one of the five Istari Wizards. He travelled
into the far east of Middle Earth, but there he was
corrupted and became a powerful servant of Sauron.
Taladhan survived Sauron's destruction,
and now seeks to make himself a new power in Middle
Earth in the fourth age. There are few still residing
on the western shores who can resist the great power
of the maia-spirit Taladhan.
Since the War of the Ring Taladhan
has not been idle. In the last twelve years he has established
a sanctuary at Sarn Goriwing in the Mountains of Mirkwood,
an ancient tower once used by 'the Necromancer'. From
his own 'dark tower' Taladhan has taken control of the
local Orc tribe, the Uruk-Thang, and they provide his
labour force, along with a few half-orc refugees from
the destruction of Isengard. Taladhan also has other
The first is Elegar, a young, ambitious
man with a talent for the magical arts. Just after the
War of the Ring ended Elegar was corrupted by Taladhan's
promises of power and arcane knowledge. The young Elegar
was sent with a secret mission to infiltrate the Council
of Seers in Minas Tirith. Charming and clever, Elegar
has done well for Taladhan. Elegar is currently chief-apprentice
and aid to the High Seer Tarquillan, but all the time
is secretly reporting back to his true master.
Taladhan's second ally is Captain Vacros.
A noble-borne Easterling, fully of hatred for Gondor
and Rohan and seeking revenge for his defeat in the
War of the Ring. Once Vacros served Mordor, now he serves
Taladhan. He is cunning, cruel and totally loyal to
Taladhan. The black wizard has promised to make him
the 'Huz of Amov', or the Great Headman of the united
Easterling tribes. From this position Vacros will build
his strength to eventually invade and destroy Gondor
When news of the resurfacing of the
Palantir stones reached Taladhan via Elegar, Taladhan
summoned Vacros and sent him forth. His orders were
to recruit and equip an expedition to the Icebay of
Forochel, to find the Palantir and bring them both to
Taladhan at Sarn Goriwing
Taladhan's third ally is Angrus, a
huge, red-bearded Northman. Thoroughly evil at heart,
Angrus is a boar of a man, fearless in a fight, but
quick-witted as well. Angrus leads a band of outlaws
and bandits currently hiding in the Wold.
Whilst Vacros is away seeking the Palantir,
Taladhan will manufacture two false seeing-stones. These
stones, made in the likeness of the Palantir, will have
some small magical power, but only enough to fool the
casual observer. He will then send both of them to Angrus.
Angrus will use the new stones to create a false trail,
hoping to fool King Elessar's pursuit and allowing Vacros
to return to Sarn Goriwing unhindered with the real
With the true Palantir stones at his
command Taladhan then plans to make his next move. The
capture and subjugation of the Orcs of Mount Gundabad.
With Vacros as the leader of the Easterlings and the
Goblin High-King under his power, Taladhan will have
forged an alliance powerful enough to threaten Gondor's