The Syndicate started as a community with a common interest in MMO gaming. We use gaming to build and grow friendships. As the MMO market stagnated between 2011ish and 2021, other sources of collaboration and common interest emerged. One that dozens of members enjoyed was Dungeons and Dragons. Syndicate membrs ChuWii and Monk banded together and created the structure to hold online D&D games that were completely integrated and that culminated in a season finale massive event at SyndCon. The general design was that there were many different D&D parties, each with a Dungeon Master, adventuring in the fictional world, all within the same overarching plot. Each group may have different week to week experiences but all of those adventures would end up meeting for the final act of the season.
When the season ended, groups might shuffle a bit, new folks would get added, some adventurers may take a break, and the next chapter of a very large, long term plot would unfold. Groups would again adventure separately (online, using Discord, D&D Beyond resources etc..) all marching towards the next season's final act. At this point, Season 3 is starting up with nearly 100 players and this history entry is sharing the recap of the first two seasons:
Season 1 – The Coming Dark
In Season 1 of Syndicate Tabletop Gaming (then simply “D&D with Monk & ChuWii”) 3 parties totaling 17 players set out across the reaches of Anorak, a homebrew setting. Each group had a mission or task to perform as given by the Guild’s leadership. Slowly throughout the season each group began to discover pieces of a plot to resurrect the Guild’s ancient enemy, The Demon King. Unable to prevent his rise, the Syndicate scrambled into a fighting retreat at the Battle of Vicar and the Demon King sacked the capital of the Twelve Kingdoms.
Rallying the Twelve Kingdoms, allied races, and magical beasts from across the continent, the Syndicate gathered at Vox Terra on Anorak’s northern coastline to plot a daring last-ditch effort to stop the Demon King from absorbing the essence of Bahamut and ascending to Godhood. The Twelve Kingdom Alliance, with the Syndicate on the Vanguard, launched via air armada and descended on the Temple of Bahamut, facing him in hand-to-hand combat. While victorious, the Demon King’s death released much of the energy he’d absorbed in a cataclysmic wave of magic, igniting the Sparks within the Syndicate’s warriors, and tossing them to the corners of the Multiverse.
Season 2 – The Journey Home
Season 2 sees our heroes struggling to survive in unfamiliar lands. Some lost in a frozen waste, others in a world where the cityscape stretches as far as the eye could see, and still others in a world where the very magic of the plane threatens their lives. From here 7 groups totaling 41 players began their journey to find their way home. Along the way their adventures had them cross paths with members of the Gatewatch, a force of interplanar peacekeepers. They explained that the explosion of magic ignited the Spark of a Planeswalker within them, allowing them to freely traverse the planes. Each group then focused on finding an adequate enough source of magic to strengthen their Sparks for the jump home to Anorak.
Meanwhile the Cabal of Bolas, a cult in thrall to the Elder Dragon Nicol Bolas, managed to unleash the Eldrazi Titan Emrakul who made a B line for Anorak. The Syndicate rushed home to defend their world and stood shoulder to shoulder with the Gatewatch, defeating Emrakul and her brood of spawn. The victory was bitter sweet as the guild surveyed the damage from the Demon King's explosion, the fields of magic on Anorak has been upended and remain out of balance. Something will need to be done to fix it before it worsens.