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AriesOmega
2009-07-30, 10:50 AM
I have been fiddling with my campaign setting a bit lately and have decided to come up with a document that has descriptions of the regions found in the campaign world. The area they play in isn't the ENTIRE planet, more like a country.

Anyhow each region I went with the approach of "these" races are commonly found and "these" races are rare and "this" race is the freakshow race but found here. For example:

Blackshire is a providence in the Principality that is characterized by hilly forested country that turns into alpine mountains. The duke is totalitarian in his rule and a bit more racist then other dukes in regards to human supremacy. You find humans and halflings in the area. The halflings are more like the sterotypical shire hobbits rather then the swift, athletic gypsies of 3E and 4E. You also find dwarves from a city-state in the region that has good relations with the duke of Blackshire due to effort of the church and ongoing trade agreements. The dwarves are considered "rare". Lastly there are Goliaths...yes...as in Races of Stone character race type Goliaths. They were given some land and encouraged to use it by the duke in order to keep an eye on them better and to "humaize" and civlize them more. The Goliath is the "freak show" race.

I am trying to do this for a region I really don't have a really clear vision for. It is a large flat grassland or plains that has been used for farming...kinda like Nebraska or Iowa. Little thorps dot it all over and the capital of the Principality is there near the rocky coast. Also the Holy See of the church is there making it a spirtual capital as well. I figured of course humans should be found here. Nomadic halflings feel right too. I am at a loss for "rare" or "freakshow" races.

So ideas? More information needed? Creative input is appreciated

AstralFire
2009-07-30, 10:54 AM
Why exactly do you need a 'freakshow race' in every subsetting?

AriesOmega
2009-07-30, 11:02 AM
Why exactly do you need a 'freakshow race' in every subsetting?

Good question. :smallconfused:

I guess to make each region kinda mirror so there is no "super regions". I have Goliaths in Blackshire as previously mentioned. In the tall mountain regions I have raptorans. In swamps I have Lizardfolk. The costal, pirate region I have darfallen and so on. The area did not have a native human population until the the establishment of the Principality by settlers from another country.

AstralFire
2009-07-30, 11:08 AM
Good question. :smallconfused:

I guess to make each region kinda mirror so there is no "super regions". I have Goliaths in Blackshire as previously mentioned. In the tall mountain regions I have raptorans. In swamps I have Lizardfolk. The costal, pirate region I have darfallen and so on. The area did not have a native human population until the the establishment of the Principality by settlers from another country.

I'm not really understanding what you mean by 'super region'. I have some ideas, but could you elaborate a bit more?

Zuki
2009-07-30, 11:47 AM
The use of the term 'freakshow race' feels uncomfortably racist to me. I'm going to assume you using that as a general term-in-mind for designing things, and that the 'freakshow treatment', if you will, isn't going to be something that's mirrored throughout the setting as well.

As for a more exotic/non-standard race of intelligent beings in a plains/prairie area that's mostly agricultural, running up into a rocky coastline...hm.

Are you looking just for races a PC could play, or any intelligent being that would reasonably develop society and organization.

Running with the nomadic/plains idea, Centaurs or Gnolls seem reasonable. (Though judging by how long it seems like this area has been populated and civilized, they'd probably have to be somewhat more toned down, 'civilized' gnolls rather than demonic slaughtering bandits. If they acted like that, they'd get wiped out to a woman.) Blink Dogs (a favorite of mine!) also sound like an appropriate benevolent intelligent race, but they aren't really societally-minded.

Another idea is having the exotic race be planetouched folk, tying in some local history with planar incursions, religion, etc.

If there's a coast and a capital, sea-kin communities make sense. Or Kuo-Toa fishmen coming up for trade.

Kenku are a fun 'exotic' race. They're primarily associated with urban areas, like the capital, but crows are an adaptable sort that really tend to get into all sorts of places. The small farming villages and thorps would make sense, too. I think I see more crows out in the suburbs than I do in the city, and I think the mix of cleared and settled land and wilder prairies makes sense for that.

Xephs and the insectlike Dromite come to mind, if you're using psionics in the setting. Seriously, no one ever uses Dromite for anything. Give 'em a chance. Or, for a more typical insect-people, Thri-Keen or Formorians.

AriesOmega
2009-07-30, 11:55 AM
I'm not really understanding what you mean by 'super region'. I have some ideas, but could you elaborate a bit more?

Sure. What I mean by "super region" is one that is better then others. Each region gives you some kind of minor benefit such as a bonus to certain skills, allowing to re-roll a skill or some other minor thing. The region also dictates free starting equipment, bonnus and starting language choices as well as what races are found there. Example...dwarves are not found in swamps.

I at first was going with the methods used in Forgotten Realms for regions but had issues balancing them among races and with each other. FR 4E regions worked well in simplifying things and my method is a hybrid of the two.

Anyhow...sorry for the rambling. I decided that there would be a few races listed as "common", one maybe two as "uncommon" and one that is "rare". The rarer ones would be something removed from being human looking. This setting has racism and bigotry as per inspired from the Fading Suns RPG in that non-humans are looked upon as "aliens" and the more non-human a race is the further removed humanity feels from them. So thusly in the example above with Blackshire:

Common: Humans, Halflings
Uncommon: Dwarves
Rare: Goliaths

Another region I can use as an example is the forest region of "Bremen". It is the frontier and the gateway to the unexplored west. It is much more relaxed in racial predjudice and bigotry.

Common: Humans, Half Elves (Wild Elf Ancestry)
Uncommon: Wild Elves, Elfborn (Half Elves raised among elves rather then humans), Forest Gnomes
Rare: Volodni...or at least a race inspired by them which is found in Unapproachable East. The "cliffnotes" version about them is they are to trees and humans as tieflings are to demons.

AstralFire
2009-07-30, 12:02 PM
I would mix it up some, if I were you - but hmm, to stick to your request, rocky terrain feels like just the sort of place for kobolds or goblins to be hiding in from the humans who seek to cleanse their holy capital.

AriesOmega
2009-07-30, 12:52 PM
Well...then again. This place isn't fully laid out and all. My vision is this is the "country". This is where most people come from that are farmers. When the humans came 100's of years ago it was open plains, rolling grasslands and savannah like the the Great Plains of the USA. The settlers built their fort that became a city and continued outwards with the farms. This region is the breadbasket of the Principality. I was thinking as I said nomadic halflings. Human farmers and something else. I do have shifters in my setting...different region and they are usually bear or wolf type since that are has forests. I was thinking stalking cat type shiftes out here would be interesting or some kind of equine related race.

Zuki
2009-07-30, 09:52 PM
I highly approve of shifters, and support your use of them. I'd also considered them as a suggestion. Canine or Feline shifters make sense.

Another one I had was fae creatures--sprites, satyrs, etc. Sure, they're all associated with forests, traditionally, but what about the moors of Scotland? A long history of interacting with the fair folk could interestingly colour a region.

AriesOmega
2009-07-31, 12:12 PM
Another one I had was fae creatures--sprites, satyrs, etc. Sure, they're all associated with forests, traditionally, but what about the moors of Scotland? A long history of interacting with the fair folk could interestingly colour a region.

I am actually intrigued by this idea. I have so far for other regions:

"Forested Valley of Mystery": Volodni (pine tree folk)
"High plateau and rolling country hills": Goliaths
"Once pristine land now blasted and destroyed...but coming back to life": Shifters...mostly wolf and bear type
"Costal haven for pirates": Darfallen
"Swampy place dotted with ruins": Lizard Folk
"The high mountain range": Raptorans

I think for the "breadbasket of the empire" perhaps some kind of fey would work. I originally had written in that there was a race of humans native to the area and the Principality came in and in a nut shell...early American History witht he Native Americans. I later retconned it that it wasn't barbarian, tribal humans...it was shifters. Seeing the artwork in PHB II for 4E inspired me to read more about 3E shifters and see if that would work. So if not fey...perhaps since it is open plains a catlike shifter or coyote type shifter would work.