- 1 Faction Insignias
- 2 Faction Generic Ranks
- 3 Faction Summaries
- 4 Major Factions
- 5 Faction Guide
- 5.1 Harpers
- 5.2 Order of the Gauntlet
- 5.3 Emerald Enclave
- 5.4 Lords’ Alliance
- 5.5 Zhentarim
Faction Item Harpers Pin Order of the Gauntlet Pendant Emerald Enclave Leaf clasp Lords’ Alliance Signet ring (symbol palm side) Zhentarim Gold coin (stamped symbol)
Faction Generic Ranks
Rank 1 - Initiate Rank 2 - Agent Rank 3 - Stalwart Rank 4 - Mentor Rank 5 - Leader
- Shadows and spies
- Oppose abuse of power
Order of the Gauntlet
- Religious Zel
- Often Lawful Good
- Wilderness survivalists
- Preserve the natural order
- Political Power
- Aggressive fighters (for glory)
- Shadow network
- Amass wealth
The following five factions have a profound effect on the political workings of Faerun.
The Lords' Alliance
The Lords' Alliance is a political and economic coalition of cities spread throughout the North and the Sword Coast. The alliance owes its success to effective cooperation and diplomacy between its members, who work to align their separate settlements toward a mutual purpose. This cooperation is easier during times of crisis, making the Lords' Alliance a powerful force when threats require a united front.
Members of this clandestine network of spellcasters and spies pride themselves on being incorruptible defenders of the greater good and champions of the oppressed. The organization is benevolent, knowledgeable, and secretive.
The Order of the Gauntlet
The Order of the Gauntlet is a dedicated, tightly knit group of holy-minded crusaders driven by a finely honed sense of duty and honor. They seek to uphold justice as best they can, and to continually test their mettle against the forces of evil.
The Emerald Enclave
The reach of the Emerald Enclave stretches far and wide across Faerun. Living deep in the wilderness demands great fortitude and the mastery of certain fighting and survival skills. The enclave is charged with defending sacred groves, protecting endangered beasts that cannot fend for themselves, and preserving the natural balance.
Members of the shadowy Black Network consider themselves part of an extended family, and rely on the larger organization for resources and security. Zhentarim bonds of oath and honor hold the network together and galvanize its members in united purpose. When a merchant caravan needs an escort, a noble needs bodyguards, or a city needs trained soldiers, the Zhentarim provides the best-trained fighting forces money can buy.
The Harpers is a scattered network of spellcasters and spies who advocate equality and covertly oppose the abuse of power. The organization is benevolent, knowledgeable, and secretive. Bards and wizards of good alignments are commonly drawn to the Harpers.
- Gather information throughout Faerûn.
- Promote fairness and equality by covert means.
- Thwart tyrants and leaders, governments, and organizations that grow too powerful.
- Aid the weak, poor and oppressed.
- One can never have too much information or arcane knowledge.
- Too much power leads to corruption. The abuse of magic must be closely monitored.
- No one should be powerless.
Harper agents are trained to act alone and rely on their own resources. When they get into scrapes, they don’t count on their fellow Harpers to rescue them. Nevertheless, Harpers are dedicated to helping one another in times of need, and friendships between Harpers are nigh unbreakable. Masterful spies and infiltrators, they use various guises and secret identities to form relationships, cultivate their information networks, and manipulate others into doing what needs to be done. Although most Harpers prefer to operate in the shadows, there are exceptions.
- Watcher (rank 1)
- Harpshadow (rank 2)
- Brightcandle (rank 3)
- Wise Owl (rank 4)
- High Harper (rank 5)
Order of the Gauntlet
The Order of the Gauntlet is composed of faithful and vigilant seekers of justice who protect others from the depredations of evildoers. The organization is honorable, vigilant, and zealous. Clerics, monks, and paladins of good (and often lawful good) alignments are commonly drawn to the Order of the Gauntlet.
- Be armed and vigilant against evil.
- Identify evil threats such as secretive power groups and inherently evil creatures.
- Enforce justice.
- Enact retribution against evil actions—do not strike preemptively.
- Faith is the greatest weapon against evil—faith in one’s god, one’s friends, and one’s self.
- Battling evil is an extraordinary task that requires extraordinary strength and bravery.
- Punishing an evil act is just. Punishing an evil thought is not.
The Order of the Gauntlet is a dedicated, tightly knit group of like-minded individuals driven by religious zeal or a finely-honed sense of justice and honor. Friendship and camaraderie are important to members of the order, and they share a trust and a bond normally reserved for siblings. Like highly motivated soldiers, members of the Order of the Gauntlet seek to become the best at what they do and look forward to testing their mettle. There are few, if any, “lone wolves” in this organization.
- Chevall (rank 1)
- Marcheon (rank 2)
- Whitehawk (rank 3)
- Vindicator (rank 4)
- Righteous Hand (rank 5)
The Emerald Enclave is a widespread group of wilderness survivalists who preserve the natural order while rooting out unnatural threats. The organization is decentralized, hardy, and reclusive. Barbarians, druids, and rangers of good or neutral alignments are commonly drawn to the Emerald Enclave.
- Restore and preserve the natural order.
- Destroy all that is unnatural.
- Keep the elemental forces of the world in check.
- Keep civilization and the wilderness from destroying each other.
- The natural order must be respected and preserved.
- Forces that upset the natural order must be destroyed.
- Civilization and the wilderness must learn to coexist peacefully.
Members of the Emerald Enclave are spread far and wide, and usually operate in isolation. They learn to depend on themselves more than others. Survival in a harsh world also demands great fortitude and mastery of certain fighting and survival skills. Members of the Enclave who dedicate themselves to helping others survive the perils of the wilderness are more social than others who are charged with defending sacred glades and preserving the natural balance.
- Springwarden (rank 1)
- Summerstrider (rank 2)
- Autumnreaver (rank 3)
- Winterstalker (rank 4)
- Master of the Wild (rank 5)
The Lords’ Alliance is a loose coalition of established political powers concerned with mutual security and prosperity. The organization is aggressive, militant, and political. Fighters and sorcerers of lawful or neutral alignments are commonly drawn to the Lords’ Alliance.
- Ensure the safety and prosperity of cities and other settlements of Faerûn.
- Maintain a strong coalition against the forces of disorder.
- Proactively eliminate threats to the established powers.
- Bring honor and glory to one’s leaders and one’s homeland.
- If civilization is to survive, all must unite against the dark forces that threaten it.
- Fight for your realm. Only you can bring honor, glory, and prosperity to your lord and homeland.
- Don’t wait for the enemy to come to you. The best defense is a strong offense.
To seek out and destroy threats to their homelands, agents of the Lords’ Alliance must be highly trained at what they do. Few can match their skills in the field. They fight for the glory and the security of their people and for the lords who rule over them, and they do so with pride. However, the Lords’ Alliance can only survive if its members “play nice” with one another, which requires a certain measure of diplomacy. Rogue agents within the Lords’ Alliance are rare, but defections have been known to occur.
- Cloak (rank 1)
- Redknife (rank 2)
- Stingblade (rank 3)
- Warduke (rank 4)
- Lioncrown (rank 5)
The Zhentarim is an unscrupulous shadow network that seeks to expand its influence and power throughout Faerûn. The organization is ambitious, opportunistic, and meritocratic. Rogues and warlocks of neutral and/or evil alignments are commonly drawn to the Zhentarim.
- Amass wealth.
- Look for opportunities to seize power.
- Gain influence over important people and organizations.
- Dominate Faerûn.
- The Zhentarim is your family. You watch out for it, and it watches out for you.
- You are the master of your own destiny. Never be less than what you deserve to be.
- Everything—and everyone—has a price.
A member of the Zhentarim thinks of himself or herself as a member of a large family, and relies on the Black Network for resources and security. However, members are granted enough autonomy to pursue their own interests and gain some measure of personal power or influence. The Black Network is a meritocracy. It promises “the best of the best,” although in truth, the Zhentarim is more interested in spreading its own propaganda and influence than investing in the improvement of its individual members.
- Fang (rank 1)
- Wolf (rank 2)
- Viper (rank 3)
- Ardragon (rank 4)
- Dread Lord (rank 5)