During the drive home today, I was brainstorming about ideas of future epic level things that could happen in a long term Astralis campaign.
What could be a huge event in an Astralis: Empire of Stars game? What could completely change the court of the Star-Pharaoh?
We Have Met the Enemy, and They Are Us
Astralis finds worlds in the Prime Material plane. Such worlds might be nearly anything. Including, a mirror of themselves. What if Astralis encountered another astral ship empire? What if that empire took notice, and waged a war of economic attrition and conquest over the colonies of Astralis?
A powerful empire, deriving from a world with a similar history, would be a potent enemy of the Star-Pharaoh’s far flung nation. The opportunities for battles on a thousand worlds would be near endless.
A Secret Grave
Astralis stumbles across the hidden world where Vecna’s Eye and Hand currently rest. Perhaps the lich has already consumed the soul of a new host, and is in control. Perhaps a wizard of Astralis becomes his new host. The arch-lich sees the throne of the Star-Pharaoh as an easy opportunity to become an Emperor again.
Meanwhile, somewhere in the material worlds, Kas senses that Vecna is on the move again. His demonic and undead spies bring him word of astral ships bearing the sign of the eye.
War With Gith
There are others who already sail ships through the astral plane. The githyanki and their lich queen launch raids into other worlds from their city resting upon the bones of a dead god. It is but a matter of time before the vessels of the Star-Pharaoh clash with those of the githyanki queen. And where the githyanki roam, the githzerai are sure to interfere.
A Plague of Tarrasques
There might be but one tarrasque. But many worlds have legends of one. Some take this to mean that there are more than one. What if the gods merely raise the singular beast whenever it falls? What if when it disappears to go into its long sleep, it is really being sent to another world instead? What if the Star-Pharaoh’s empire yet again angered the gods, and they set the tarrasque upon all of the worlds of the empire, one after another?
Could your adventurers defeat the tarrasque? If they proved that they could, might they be sent by astral vessel to every world where the beast appeared?
One Gate Too Many
The world of the Star-Pharaoh keeps building gates to other realms, extending teleporter pads to other places, sending astral ships to other places.
Someday, they push things too far. The pigeons come home to roost. Enemies burst through the myriad of planar gates, transforming regions of the homeworld into new landscapes. Teleporter pads flood the imperial lands with powerful strike teams who take up residence. Fleets of astral ships descend upon the failing center, intent upon seizing the treasures gathered from a thousand worlds.
The sages of Astralis do their best to shut it down. They crash the gates that they can close. The disrupt the teleporters they can stop. They destroy the astral vessels in their docks. War rages across the homeworld.
The flames consume the great libraries. The battles unleash terrible weapons upon the world. The warring factions retreat when they can, but many are stranded. They divide the world between them. For the first time in thousands of years, the homeworld is a shattered realm with a thousand petty kings and queens. The civilization of the Star-Pharaohs descends into darkness.
Centuries go by. The worst disasters have stabilized. The world has come to grips with its new reality. Occasionally another planar gate or teleporter bursts through, or an astral vessel makes landfall, but there are ancient defenses in place that blunt such events. The inhabitants of a fallen world pick the bones of their ancestral lands, and live amongst its ruins.