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  1. - Top - End - #211
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    Default Re: Lands of the Barbarian Kings

    Nilbogs? Dloboks? Or are those too obvious?

    Maybe something like tree-dog, execpt not so insulting for a sapent race (although I'll bet others call them that when they want to be mean!).

    Arbogrrrs? Sorry, I'll try to think of something better.

    Heh, maybe generate some random names from an old Traveller Vargr name-generator if I can find it - nice growly sounds.

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    Default Re: Lands of the Barbarian Kings

    Do you have a physical description for the tree dwellers? I'm thinking either Raccoon or Squirrel folk, though maybe something related to Tanukis might fly without being too obvious...
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    Damn you Cieyrin! Cieyrin!!!!!read as Khaaaaan!

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  3. - Top - End - #213
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    Default Re: Lands of the Barbarian Kings

    Warhammer Fantasy has a race related to goblins called "gnoblars", maybe you can use that?

    Also, Cieyrin, there was a picture of this race somewhere in this thread, maybe a page or two back. Looked more like goat people than anything else to me, really, with the horns and cloven hoofs.

    Actually, there's a goat people race in the 3.5 Monster Manual III, called Ibixians. There's another potential name for you to swipe if you want, Yora.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Swooper View Post
    Warhammer Fantasy has a race related to goblins called "gnoblars", maybe you can use that?

    Also, Cieyrin, there was a picture of this race somewhere in this thread, maybe a page or two back. Looked more like goat people than anything else to me, really, with the horns and cloven hoofs.

    Actually, there's a goat people race in the 3.5 Monster Manual III, called Ibixians. There's another potential name for you to swipe if you want, Yora.
    I see it now. That's a mask, though, and I don't think hooves and climbing trees necessarily mix well.

    I'm just gonna throw a couple names out there: Guiren, Cattre, Lennser, Phaedra. Have a faeish sound to them, methinks.
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  5. - Top - End - #215
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    Quote Originally Posted by Swooper View Post
    Also, Cieyrin, there was a picture of this race somewhere in this thread, maybe a page or two back. Looked more like goat people than anything else to me, really, with the horns and cloven hoofs.
    Whatever that picture is, it's certainly not the forest goblins.
    (Goes searching for the supposedpicture and the one I actually have in mind)

    I see, this one:
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    But my main idea how they are looking is this filler sketch from a webcomic:
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    Last edited by Yora; 2012-02-02 at 06:33 AM.
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    Goblins

    Goblins are a race of small, underground living humanoids. While standing about as high as gnomes, they are much more gaunt in appearance and have very pale greenish skin and thin black hair. Goblins have small, flat noses and very large eyes, with which they can see in perfect darkness. While almost as intelligent as the humanoid races on the surface world, goblin society is much more primitive and lacks most technology.

    Combat
    Goblins are an underground race and very rarely leave the large cave systems they inhabit. While not harmful to them, they hate sunlight and are found in the open only at night when traveling on the surface. Being entirely at home in caves and being of small size, goblins are excellent climbers and often use that to their advantage when hunting or fighting off attackers. They are well accustomed to crawl through cracks only a foot wide and climb almost vertical shafts. Goblin ambushes can be set anywhere, swarming from hidden cracks in the walls and even the ceiling to get their target at total surprise. Whenever possible, they will chose the place for fights and even make their camps in places that have lots of small passages too small for most dangerous enemies. If a fight turns out badly, they will retreat and use hidden passages to prepare for counter attacks or simply wait for the enemy to move on before coming back out.

    With few natural resources found underground, that are useful to the goblins, their equipment is to a great deal made of leather, bone, and chitin, but they have also learned to produce armor plates and short blades from hammered iron, which is a great deal inferior to anything gnomes are working with. Scouts and hunters are usually armed with daggers and short bows, while spears, clubs, and metal armor are restricted to warriors who guard the camps and villages, where tight confines are less of a problem.

    Ecology
    Goblins live in groups that can range from a few dozens to hundreds of individuals. The only limiting factor is the availability of food and other resources, which in the caves that goblins inhabit are usually scarce and hard to come by. Like all larger underground creatures, goblins live mostly on vermin and small fish that feed on the fungi, lichens, and algae. These subterranean plants require the heat from underground volcanic fissures instead of sunlight to grow, and often grow in such abundance that they form an oasis in the surrounding barren tunnels of the underground world. Goblin villages are usually found in such places and heavily fortified, while smaller communities are often temporary hunting camps, consisting only of about a dozen or so hunters.

    With the exception of the Keyashei elves, goblins are the only humanoid race that is at home underground, so they usually don't face a lot of competition. The greatest threat are predatory beasts, but occasionally bands of grimlocks or driders make raids on goblin villages, which makes them constantly on guard against any intruders coming near their settlements.

    History
    Most of the surface races have only very limited contact with goblins. The only exception are gnomes, whose mines frequently encroach on goblin territory, which often leads to violent clashes than can end victorious for either side. Gnomes tell many stories of great wars against goblins in the past, but seeing the extend of goblin realms in the present day puts some serious doubts to the accuracy of such tales.

    The only known goblin kingdom was destroyed by the Kayashei when they claimed its vast caverns for themselves and made it the location of their largest city. Many of the goblin slaves that serve in the city are descendants from captured survivors of that battle.

    Society
    Goblins live in settlements consisting of several families, which are a lot more like packs to other humanoid races. Each such family of up to two dozen goblins shares a common home with the strongest male being the leader. The head of the family usually has several wives, while the other male family members have none. Goblin children become adults at about 10 years of age, at which point they have to leave the family and find a new one that takes them in. Since male hunters bring the family the most wealth, families are eager to take in as many as they can, which on the other hand holds the risk of adding more rivals for the leadership of the group. While goblin society is dominated by males, the females of a family are usually all related to each other, while the males at the very most include some groups of two or three brothers. Which usually makes the oldest females quite influential inside the family and no family head can hold on to his position without their support. While it is in the females interest to have a strong leader for the family, it is rarely a problem to get rid of one who is more trouble than he is worth it.

    Goblin villages are led by a chieftain, who usually is the head of the largest and wealthiest family. This family also usually includes most of the clans shamans, which are mostly female. In many respects, that makes the chieftains primary wife the most powerful person in the village, for as anyone can challenge and replace the current chieftain, she always retains her position as the highest ranking shaman.

    Among adventurers and explorers, goblins are known as the only race that lives close to the surface and also makes frequent journeys down into the depth of the Underworld. Goblins are pretty much the only ones who know how to reach the Underworld and how to survive there. Any attempt to reach it usually starts with a search for a goblin village to recruit guides that can show the way and also provide a relatively save return to the surface.

    http://barbaripedia.eu/index.php?title=Goblins
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  7. - Top - End - #217
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    Nice post on the goblins.

    Hey, another idea on naming the forest goblins - just call them forest goblins! Yeah, they probably have their own name for themselves so you still want to come up with something for that, but to most of the humans and elves and other races they're just "goblins" even though they are totally unrelated to the true goblins that you have just described.

    Kinda like Europeans coming to the Americas and calling the people that lived here "Indians" because they originally thought they'd found the East Indies, and even when they knew better the name just stuck because they didn't really care.

    Or more precisely, like the "Orcs" in one of my worlds, where there are actually two completely unrelated species that most non-Orcs just refer to collectively as Orcs, even though they are obviously not the same (in brief, Cave Orcs are green w tusks etc, live underground, typical D&D orcs; whereas Plains Orcs and Forest Orcs are surface dwellers descended from Neanderthals). To the humans and others it just doesn't matter, they call them all Orcs.

    Anyway, just a thought as you've now posted about real goblins, but are still referring to the other unnamed unrelated people as forest goblins.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Yora View Post
    New map, with the islands still missing.

    I'll probably start a new one instead of continuing with this one, but the basic layout is pretty much set.

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    What did you end up drawing it with? Freehand drawing scanned and worked over in PaintShop or similar? Or work directly in computer app?

    I'd like to figure out one of the fractal mapping programs, to be able to zoom in to detail local area maps while still fitting into the overall planned shape, but my few experiments have not turned out at all like what I had in mind. One app had any idea that I liked, sketching out your basic landforms and then letting the app erode them for a few million years to get realistic hills and rivers and coastal shapes, but I never could get it to work for me.

  9. - Top - End - #219
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    I did that entirely in photoshop with mouse. It's just a stack of single colored layers and using freeform selection to cut out the shapes.
    There are some simple tricks for added effects, but I wait with those until I have all the shapes finalized.

    I would also like to work with vector graphics, für the zoom function, but my photoshop doesn't have that capability.
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    I got a big load of ideas for organizations, which I'd like to share before I start to go deeper them.

    Criminal Organizations
    The Blue Sails: One of the oldest and largest criminal organization of the Barbarian Lands. The Blue Sails are an extensive network of smugglers who are opperating from the elven islands of the Inner Sea. The transport and trade in almost anything nonliving, but make occasional exceptions for rare magical animals or anyone who needs secret passage and is willing to pay abhorently high prices for that. The Blue Sails don't have anything to do with assassinations, kidnapping, or burglaries, and use blackmail mostly to keep their own business running. In rare cases they hire themselves out to board ships out on the open sea to retrieve valuable artifacts or prisoners, but outright piracy is not among their activities.
    In the elven islands, the Blue Sails are not as much a band or criminals, but an established institution. It's no problem at all finding the local leader of the group by simply asking dockworkers or shopkeepers and as long as they pay their docking fees (plus some) the guards don't bother them. On the mainland they are more descrete and avoid being noticed by the local authorities. In the islands, the Sails have contacts throughout the nobility and merchant houses and only the most dangerous or daring pirated ever attack their ships.
    The Hidden: The Hidden are a network of Vandren thieves and other rogues that are believed to have existed even before their migration to the Barbarian Lands. Werever Vandren are living in significant numbers, the Hidden have some of their men as well. In the early decades, they had used their connections to arrange certain secret agreements and performed other services for the chieftains who were trying to find a new foothold in the Southern Clanlands. When Vandren fall on hard times, the Hidden are often near to offer their assistance, and many of those debts are still being paid off to this very day.
    The Hidden are easily the largest and most powerful human criminal organization. They compete with the Blue Sails for the trade with goods that are forbidden in Vandren ports and are making a fortune with selling their services to powerful people who really only need them because they started to accept such offers many years ago. To lots of people, the Hidden are parasites who only cause much more trouble than what few good they are doing. The Hidden usually stay away from such people, as they lack the manpower to defend themselves against chieftains who bring all their warriors to crack down on them. Instead they are perfectly content to wait for opportunities in which only they can help and then make sure that the person in charge would never risk to move openly against them. The numbers of the Hidden probably range into the thousands, but most are just ordinary people who keep their eyes and ears open and arrange for certain people metting each other and certain packages reach their destination.
    The Nightcloaks: Any time someone is speaking of the Thieves Guild, it is usually the Nightcloaks who are meant. The Nightcloaks are a powerful group of thieves who opperate throughout all of the elven clanland. They also deal in smuggling, extortion, counterfeiting, and the occasional assassinations and there is almost nothing they wouldn't do as long as they can keep a relatively low profile in public.
    Smugglers Cove: Smugglers Cove is a small rock in the Inner Sea that really consists only of barren cliffs and a single harbor. It lies close to several of the major trade routes and only a short detour for most ships, but almost all merchants try to stay clear of the island unless absolutely neccessary. Smugglers cove is relatively small, but one of the few ports that is not controled by any of the major clans and completely neutral. It's proximity to many trade routes makes it a very attractiv destination for pirates and anyone who wants to disappear for a few months. While the town does not have any real government, it's almost entirely controlled by a dark elven rogues and her gang. She owns the entire docks and warehouses and all of the inns, taverns, and shops pay her a hefty amount of money for the previlege of being allowed to stay. While the current owner has been on the island for almost 70 years, the town itself is much older and had been used by pirates long before the Vandren came to the Barbarian Lands. While only a small fish when compared to the other criminal organizations and not doing any business on the mainland or the elven islands, the elf and her gang are one of the major criminal groups since almost anyone who needs a safe harbor to repair and resupply away from the major port needs to come to her. And non of the pirates and smugglers of Smugglers Cove have any interest in seeing major fighting destroying the town.
    The Talons: The Talons are a small group of assassins, drug, and poison smuglers, who have shown up in the northeastern parts of the Southern Clanlands only during the recent decade. They consist mostly of elves and tiefliengs, and rumors say they are led by a true demon. Their longterm goals are unclear, but they have started to cause a lot of trouble to the Blue Sails and Nightcloaks.

    Magical Organizations
    The Black Tower: The Black Tower is a society of elven, human, and gnome sorcerer which is based in a tall keep of the same name near the road that connects the Northern and the Southern Clanlands. Black Tower agents travel throughout the clanlands, keeping their eyes and ears open for signs of threats that may be of significant danger for the civilized lands and try to keep the regional chieftains aware of major threats that go beyond the regular inter-clan sruggles.
    The Dark Ones:The Dark Ones are an unusual organization in that they consist almost entirely of a single dark elven clan of Endarei. Like the Keiyashei tribe, the Dark Ones prefer to live underground in a large cave city but are unique in that all their shamans are also shadow mages. The shamans are in the service of Ancients, but nobody knows why the entire clan has entered the pact and what the purpose of all is.
    The Demon Hunters: The Demon Hunters are an order of warriors and sorcerers trained to find and destroy warlocks. Most members are humans and they are commanded by one of the six guardians who rule over the Crystal Caves. Their opposition to anyone dabbling in demonic magic naturally has them at odds with the Magic Seekers, who have their main area of influence just a few hundred miles to the North.
    The Magic Seekers: The Magic Seekers are a society of elven sorcerers and nobles that is dedicated both to the pursuit of magical discoveries as well as the elevation of wood elves to greater power through magic. Though more an informal network of like minded individuals than an actual alliance or confederation, the society includes many very powerful and influential people among its upper ranks as is increasingly becomming the dominant power in the eastern parts of the Southern Clanlands. The organization also have many members and sympathizers in the elven islands, but their influence over politics is much less extensive there.
    Many of the Magic Seekers believe that conventional magic is just a small part of what magic really has to offer and perform extensive research in void magic, which puts them in opposition with the Demon Hunters and doesn't make them any friends with many elven shaman groups.
    The Shadow Society: The Shadow Society is a group of sorcerer mystics who have devoted themselves to discover the hidden nature of the Shadow World. Their studies and research often have them on the hunt for rare tomes and items and they descretly contact scholars and chieftains all over the northern Barbarian Lands. Their searches often lead them to the possession of many ancient and lost secrets, which they use to bargain for whatever it is they wish to acquire. While not a nefarious organization, members of the Shadow Society often sweeten the deals they offer by also promissing their silence in regard to certain things their business partners would rather be kept secret.
    Void Keep The Void Keep is a castle of magnificent size that is located on an island just off the coast at the very north of the Inner Sea where it opens into the Frozen Sea. The remote location far from any major port makes the Keep relatively obscure, but it is infamous for being almost entirely inhabited by tieflings. The keeps population numbers about 1,000 and the relative uniformity of their demonic features makes it likely that they migrated from the Void in a single group and are not made up of tieflings from all over the Barbarian Lands who have simply gathered in a single place.
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    I think the early communists had some really good ideas and I always like the idealist good communist that sometimes showed up in cold war movies. I wanted to incorporate something like that into the setting, but didn't have any good idea how to do that in a pre-urban society. Now I played Dragon Age 2, and the Qunari gave me a lot of nice ideas that might work out well.

    Unity
    Unity is a philosophy as much as it is an organization, and the two aspects are tightly connected with each other. It is also a religion in many respects, but it does not worship any gods or spirits.
    The core believe of Unitiy is that single thing is part of a larger collective. A tree is not just a single tree, but a part of a forest, a bird is part of a flock, and a mountain is a part of an island. Nothing exists just by itself, but it is the relation to other things and the role it plays in the larger collective, that defines everything that exist. A fish is nothing without the ocean. The plants that feed it and the larger animals that eat it all define what a fish is. And most imporantly, a man, even with his house, and his fields, is nothing without the other people of the village. Only by having people who work on his fields, and people who buy his crops and sell him leather, furs, and tools, can he be the person he is.

    Few people dispute the logic of this, but the core principle of Unity is, that this dependency persists through all thinkable level. The forest, mountains, and rivers form continents, and the continents and oceans form a planet. Eventually, everything depends on everything else. If just one tiny thing would cease to exist, everything else would be different. The unity of everything that exists is called the Monad, which is the only thing that Unity has similar to a god. Because everything is an equal part of the Monad, everything is equally important, and everything has the same value, which includes people, spirits, and gods. All people have to be treated according to their capabilities, which means that it makes no difference what age or gender a people have, to what race or clan they belong, and if they are nobles or slaves.

    This puts Unity in strong contrast to the values and customs of many of the people of the Barbarian Lands. While age, gender, and social status have different meanings in different tribes, a persons clan is of very high importance. The needs of the clan stand above the needs of anyone else and while other people may be a guests or an allies, they don't have any of the rights and previleges that members of the clan have. It is a duty to help and protect others of the clan, even if one does not like them, and that is more so true for everyone who has been granted hospitality. But there is no ethical prerogative to extend any such help to strangers and outsiders. They are not your business and don't concern you. Offering help to strangers is both admirable, and regarded as a sign of weakness. The duties to the clan include not risking your life or wasting resources of the clan.

    In the teachings of Unity, these separations do not exist. Every person is a member of the world, and has the potential to contribute equally, regardless of ones birth. So the second principle of Unity is, that everyone is a brother or a sister. No one is closer or more distantly related to everyone else, everyone shares the same social status, and there is no seniority between people. If one person deserves to be treated in a way, then every other person in the same situation deserves to be treated in the same way. However, the followers of Unity have many enemies, so these benefits can only be extended to those who are willing to accept being part of the Monad. Those who refuse this universal truth and try to resist it are a burden to Unity and can not be granted the benefits they have a right to, as they would only waste them. However, followers of Unity are still a lot more likely to offer help to strangers, in the hope that they can be helped along the path to realizing the truth of the Monad. But when followers have to chose between other followers and outsiders, followers always get preferential treatment. However, Unity teaches that there must be made no difference between a highly respected elder of Unitiy, and a follower who has just converted. Still, people rarely dare to join Unity out of a whim or to get out of a tight spot, as they treat apostates as traitors who abused their hospitality and protection and stole resources that belong to other followers. Also, everyone who wants to become a follower has to renounce any former rank, status, or clan, and few clans would be willing to take such a person back, leaving them outcasts with nowhere to go to.
    It is very uncommon for followers of Unity to be found in the communities of other groups. People who forsake their clans and join Unity usually move to other Unity villages or join Unity enclaves in larger towns. Followers of Unity are encouraged to answer any questions about their believes and customs that other people have, but usually are not actively trying to win new members to their cause, so to not overly antagonize their neighbors. However, in regions of very strong Unity presence, it is commonly attempted to get any pockets of remaining outsider to join, even if it takes very strong coercion.

    While everyone in Unity is of the same status, not everyone is of the same skill, and duties and authority are given to people who are best suited to perform them. Unity does not have any specific ranks for its members, but rather asignments. It is the office or position that gives a person authority and command over other, and they are all lost when another person is asigned to it. Stability and continuity is recognized as important for everyone to understand ones own role in the Monad, so posts are usually only reasigned when the current holder becomes unable to perform his duties optimally, and not every time another person shows superior capabilities. Only when people truly understand their position in the community and their relationship to the other people can they perform their duties at their best, and according to Unity, even a change to a small part changes all the other parts as well.

    While Unity allows for personal possessions, everything of value to the community is shared possession by all followers of Unity. Personal possessions include clothes, simple tools, toys, and simple jewely, as long as it is made of nothing more valuable than bronze or iron. Armor and weapons belong to the community and are distributed by the administrators of the guard, but usually every soldier is given a set of equipment that is assigned specifically to him and he alone is responsible for it. However, any equipment taken from fallen enemies has to be brought to the guard administrator on return to the village to be given to the person who could make the most use out of it. Usually preferential treatment is given to the person who brought the item in, to encourage people to not trying to hide any valuable finds. Items of purely luxury use are collected and sold.

    The religious practices of Unity focus primarily on helping all people understand their capabilities and their relation to the world around them, which both define their identity in the Monad. By understand ones own position and identity, one can also gain understanding of the other things and people that depend on oneself, which further increases the efficiency of the Monad. It is said when a person attains full understanding of his own nature and identity, he will also gain complete insight into the Monad as a whole, effectivly ceasing to be an individual. A person who has reached full Unity no longer fears death, because the Monad is eternal, and even through body and spirit die, it is only the natural change of the constantly shifting Monad, with nothing having been truly lost.
    The priests of Unity are known as the Mystics, who can be both divine and arcane spellcasters, but only divine spellcastes are trained. All arcane mystics are converts who were mages before they joined Unity. Magic is a part of the Monad that lies beyond the world of physical experiences and is therefore regarded as a fundamental part for deeper understanding of the Monad. While most followers of Unity gain understanding of the Monad through meditation and contemplating, those who show the spirit of the true seeker are initiated to the path of the mystic. The mystics are not only the teachers of the followers, but also highly respected for the magical powers they gain from their study of magic. To cast spells is to perform close to the full potential of the Monad and regarded by followers as a display of the divine. However, at the same time, followers are considerably less weary of magic than other people. While they recognize the danger of magic in the hands of an enemy, they also understand that it is the work of a mortal and that every person could potentially master such a skill. There is however some resentment for spellcasters who do not follow Unity, that goes beyond the usual weariness of outsiders. Magic is a manifestation of the Monad and using it to harm Unity has an air of heresy to it.

    Since stability and certainty are of high importance in Unity, followers have relatively strict customs when it comes to personal freedom. While all people are expected to find the place in life that is right for them, one can not simply be constantly changing ones mind on a whim. If something is started, it has to be done with the conviction of seeing it through to the end and not merely attempted half-heartedly. If one is unhappy with ones assignment, it is expected that one can explain the reasons for it and also being able to say what kind of asignment would work. If someone is repeatedly causing dissent, he is asigned to low-competence duties of no vital importance until a better solution can be proposed to the administrators.
    While Unity does not have marriages, it is required that all romantic relationships are commited and have to be declared before the community. Casual sexual relationships are forbidden, which includes any relationships with outsiders. Not only do they often cause disruptions of communal life, followes of Unity are also expected to clearly make up their mind before doing anything and personal relationships require the greatest degree of certainty. Unplanned pregnancies only cause disruptions of daily routines, not only for the parents but also for the people depending on their work, and couples are strongly requested to make sure it doesn't happen when inconvenient. Pregnancies do not have to be permited, by expecting parents are required to inform their superiors as soon as they know, so they have time to plan ahead.
    While children live with their parents, all Unity communities have some members asigned to caring for the children while their parents are working. When they are old enough, they start to be trained in some basic and minor asignments that are common in the community, like sweeping floors or feeding chickens. As they become older they are asigned more complex tasks that help them learn about all the duties that are performed in the community. Eventually, they are asked to name preferences for available assignments and will serve for a trial period until they find a duty that both fits them and for which are deemed suitable by the older workers. As not all people are equally suited for every assignment, it is regarded as very important to find one in which the child will be able to perform to its full potential, which should not be wasted in an assignment that only makes the child discontent.

    While not as large a power as some other kingdoms and alliances, Unity is massive in size when compared to other clans. In the northern Barbarian Lands, about 1 in 12 people are followers of Unity, with considerably higher numbers in the lands of the Kaas, where it is one of the major powers. Unity has the greatest support among the Kaas, who dominate the highest levels of assignments. But the farther south one travels, the more the numbers of kaas are replaced by elves and humans. But since Unity usually maintains one a small number of strongholds in a large region, most villages have a highly mixed population. While the distances involved require a great amount of authonomy from remote communities, Unity takes great care to maintain constant contact between groups and villages and enclaves can count on assistance from several neighboring settlements.



    I think this looks already quite solid, but if you have any idea about what to add or change... well, you know the drill.
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    Lizardfolk now have their own page. Like all pages, I intend to expand and refine it as the setting takes a more defined shape in the future.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Swooper View Post
    Aha, I see... well, I guess that means I'm interested in seeing more information about the most powerful clans and their chieftains. I think they should be fleshed out a bit, seeing they are what the setting takes its name from.
    Over the ladt few days, I've done some work on what kinds of kingdoms I want to have in the setting, and even three days later I still like what I have drafted up, so I think it's good enough to actually flesh it out.

    So far, I have decided on 25 kings:
    e (elf), g (gnome), h (human), k (kaas), l (lizardfolk), f (female), m (male)

    Wood Elves
    Queen of the Southern Clanlands (ef Drd11)
    Queen of the Island Elves (ef Drd11)
    Sorcerer Queen (ef Sor10)
    Archdruid of the Southern Clanlands (em Drd10)
    King of the Northern Clanlands (em Rng6/Sor2)
    Queen of the Snow Elves (ef Sor8)
    Council Leader of the Northern Metropolis (ef Rng2/Sor5)
    King of the Northern Coast (em Ftr3/Rng4)

    Dark Elves
    Queen of the Jungles (ef Drd12)
    High Matriarch of the Mountain City (ef Ftr2/Pst8)

    Humans
    Witch of the Northlands (hf Sor12)
    Dragon King (Old male red dragon)
    King of the River Valey (hm Bbn6/Ftr4)
    King of the Frozen Lands (hm Bbn7/Rng2)
    With Queen of the Northmen (hf Bbn1/Sor7)
    Lord Steward of the Crystal Caves (hm Ftr4/Pst4)

    Gnomes
    King of the Gnome City (gm Ftr6/Rog3)
    Queen of the Forest Gnomes (gf Drd5/Rog3)
    Gnome #3 (gm Ftr8)
    Gnome #4 (gm Ftr2/Rog5)

    Kaas
    Lowland Clans King (km Bbn4/Ftr7)
    Mountain Clans King (km Ftr10)
    Primarch of Unity (kf Drd6/Rng2)

    Lizardfolk
    Sun King (lm Ftr10)
    Canibal King (lm Bbn7/Rog4)

    The levels range from 7th to 12th, which is not suprisingly as kingship usually does not go simply to the eldest son, but to the most capable of the close relatives of the former king. And if the successor is not strong enough, one of the kingdoms other chieftains might want to take over the position. In some cases, the ruler is simply an individual powerful enough to force a handful of clans into service, but those kingdoms rarely survive much longer than the founder. There is still room for a couple more, if I come up with a good idea, or someone brings one to me. I think these kingdoms include about one third of all the people belonging to the PC races.

    From here on it's writing down what I already have decided about the kingdoms, describing the places where the courts are located, mentioning the chieftains in service of the kings, secondary settlements of the kingdoms, and then I already have pretty much an entire setting. A few religions, organizations, and ruins thrown in, and it's done.
    And then it's all about editing. Cleaning up badly written texts, inserting names and references for things I've created later in the barbaripedia pages, and organazing all the links to other pages. Which I think can easily get me through the rest of the year.
    Having ideas is actually easy, but it's these stupid names for people, kingdoms, settlements, mountains, and rivers, that I assume will eat up easily half of the creatve process. So I better also start with a basic dictionary for the main language groups, grom which I can take pieces to put together into names that you can connect to a tribe just by the sound of them.
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    King of the River Valley is 16th level, btw, as a Barbarian 6/Fighter 10.

    Also, yay, Dragon King made the cut, though listed with the human kings. I suppose that it's divided by race of primary subjects.

    Also, I thought that Druids were out for Oracles? There's a lot of Druids listed...

    Also, we need a straight up Rogue King. Think Jaraxle and the Bregan D'aerthe, one who maintains power by keeping information on his rivals and playing off of them to maintain his small but independent clan a force to be reckoned with. It's not all about sheer power, it's about how you apply it, right?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cieyrin View Post
    King of the River Valley is 16th level, btw, as a Barbarian 6/Fighter 10.
    That was a typo. On my notes, he was right under one of the Ftr 10 characters.

    I am now writing things not specifying a rules system. 3.5e SRD seems to be the most generic way to go.

    A rogue king maybe, but he'd be that only in name, and not in practice.
    Though I am not quite sure what kind of organization would fit for such an NPC. Maybe I come up with something.
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    Hmm, looks like the server lag ate what I tried to post on 2/6. I'll try to remember what all I had to say...

    I like the criminal organizations, but they somehow seem almost too organized for how I pictured this setting from your original post in this thread. The criminal organizations sound to me like they are based in a more civilized, city/town-oriented setting. Maybe you have a different view of them.

    I feel kinda the same about Unity. Very interesting post, interesting society - but seems to me it would fit in a more civilized setting than how I had envisioned this one from your original post.

    Yay for the King/Chieftain list!

    And now I need to go read the Lizardfolk stuff on your wiki. Is there a lot on the wiki that has not been posted here?

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    What is up there an has not been posted here is almost entire placeholder text that will be kicked out completely when I get around to write real texts for them.

    The organizational part is indeed an issue to keep aware of with this setting, but I think it's mostly the brief presentation right now. I think it can blend in quite well with the way I have in mind. I was specifcally looking for organizations that make sense in the kind of society they will exist in.
    But yes, the criminal organization will be strongly concentrated on the few urban centers, as they really wouldn't work in the smaller villages.
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    Excellent! Love the king/chieftain list. Quick question: What class is "Pst"?

    Feel your pain about the trouble of coming up with names. I've often used made up fantasy names in the past, but my players always seem to have difficulty remembering them. So next time around I'm going to try to keep most placenames in our language (Icelandic) which seems to be what the other DMs in my group do, but with at least humans named laike thyss (inspired by Song of Ice and Fire). Also, I'm working bottom->top, so to begin with I really only need to decide the names of things relevant to the first adventure, the rest comes as the need arises. Still going to be a headache coming up with all that...
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    Quote Originally Posted by Swooper View Post
    Excellent! Love the king/chieftain list. Quick question: What class is "Pst"?
    I'm guessing Priest, as the two that have it seem in charge of religious sites.
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    So far, I've discovered a couple of nice combinations for cultures and languages, that work suprisingly well.

    Wood Elves = Scandinavian
    Dark Elves = Japanese
    Gnomes = Gaelic
    Northern Humans = Finish/Estonian/Hungarian
    Demons = Ancient Egyptian
    And I think the Vandren might work quite well with South Slavic names.

    Once you know what it's supposed to sound like, its easier to make names.

    Edit: The compiled list of example names, as I have it now:
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    Lizardfolk: f: Bisra, Dakra, Dara, Draga, Enra, Iskra, Kire, Majai, Matei, Mihal, Mukai, Nada, Raija, Ruka, Ruza, Soia, Vorja, Yaga; m: Adon, Aran, Atar, Ator, Bogan, Bragor, Dajen, Dragan, Enyo, Goran, Hakar, Hazan, Karoj, Kero, Komur, Magjar, Rato, Razan, Ruzar, Sarka, Tagaj, Toron, Utam, Verko.
    Wood Elf: f: Adven, Aina, Anya, Asta, Birte, Bodil, Eha, Elin, Elren, Hanna, Kaya, Maren, Maya, Nea, Valdis; m: Anerin, Arvid, Asger, Bevin, Dag, Dagfin, Fannar, Frey, Gunne, Haldor, Halvad, Keld, Keran, Kivan, Kyell, Nevin, Raga, Raiken, Sarel, Sevrin, Sindri, Stian, Teven, Tyge, Tyko, Yalma, Yan, Yeven, Yngwe.
    Dark Elf f: Aiko, Airi, Akane, Akio, Aya, Ayaka, Ayane, Chika, Hanako, Kazue, Kyo, Mayu, Mika, Miku, Ran, Shiori, Umeko, Yua; m: Ayumu, Daiki, Haru, Jiro, Juro, Kaoru, Katsu, Kazuo, Kenta, Kohaku, Kuro, Masaru, Naoki, Noboru, Riku, Shin, Shun, Taiki, Takuma, Yasu.
    Gnome: f: Aderyn, Afanen, Alis, Brid, Brona, Dagna, Dorean, Eadan, Filda, Fiona, Hailyn, Helmi, Ida, Kadi, Kaili, Katriona, Kerwen, Kora, Maewe, Mair, Mari, Moirin, Mona, Moyra, Murna, Naomi, Roshin; m: Aban, Ahren, Aidan, Anrai, Aran, Bran, Dulin, Garin, Goban, Gorim, Kahal, Kean, Kevan, Kolan, Konn, Neirin, Nial, Oran, Rogar.
    Northern Human: f: Agi , Aino, Alma, Amu, Anu, Anya, Dora, Ella, Enni, Hanna, Inka, Kadri, Kati, Mara, Mari, Nora, Pinya, Rina, Ruha, Sara, Satu, Seiya, Taika, Taru, Terye, Trinu, Yana, Yanne; m: Ahti, Akos, Alvar, Ari, Artu, Arvo, Atto, Bandi, Bran, Elek, Iva, Kai, Kimi, Mika, Miksa, Oren, Pavo, Simo, Veli, Vilyo, Yani, Yaska, Yuha, Yuhan, Yuka.
    Vandren: f: Aga, Agata, Alma, Aneta, Anka, Anna, Anya, Bara, Borna, Branka, Dana, Dariya, Darya, Dora, Draga, Elena, Ena, Ida, Ines, Katka, Katka, Maya, Mila, Nika, Nina, Sara, Sona, Stana, Tonka, Yaga, Yela, Yelka, Zoya; m: Alen, Davor, Edi, Eney, Fedir, Goran, Ivika, Matei, Matik, Mato, Miran, Pavo, Taras, Yaksa, Yaku, Yanes, Yanko.
    Island Human: f: Batari , Cinta, Eka, Kanya, Kasi, Kaya, Kiri, Mawar, Mayli, Mona, Utari; m: Adi, Aku, Anaru, Batar, Dian, Hata, Kimo, Ruha, Sunan, Surya, Yuda.

    There's a shortage of wood elf female name, and an unfortunate total absense of Kaas names. If you have any idea that don't sound like Klingons or orcs, let me know.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yora View Post
    So far, I've discovered a couple of nice combinations for cultures and languages, that work suprisingly well.

    Wood Elves = Scandinavian
    Dark Elves = Japanese
    Gnomes = Gaelic
    Northern Humans = Finish/Estonian/Hungarian
    Demons = Ancient Egyptian
    And I think the Vandren might work quite well with South Slavic names.

    Once you know what it's supposed to sound like, its easier to make names.
    Do you have a resource you like for common names in these different languages? I've found some lists just googling, but more resources = good.

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    Default Re: Lands of the Barbarian Kings

    Here is a full list of all Icelandic female names. Maybe some of them can work for your wood elves! If you want male names too, switch the checkbox at the top from "stúlkur" to "drengir". Many of these names are originally foreign though, of course, but I trust you to pick the ones that fit!
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    Cool, found a couple of new ones.
    Quote Originally Posted by Swooper View Post
    Feel your pain about the trouble of coming up with names. I've often used made up fantasy names in the past, but my players always seem to have difficulty remembering them. So next time around I'm going to try to keep most placenames in our language (Icelandic) which seems to be what the other DMs in my group do, but with at least humans named laike thyss (inspired by Song of Ice and Fire).
    What do the other of you think about "descriptive" place names?

    On the plus side, they are easy to make. On the downside, you need to translate them when you don't play in english. And quite often translated names don't sound as cool as the original. And I am targeting an international audience here, so that's something to consider.

    I tend to a mixture of both. Actual names for places that have been parts of the local culture for a long time, and descriptive names for everything where the original name is not known or that are so remote that they had not been named until very recently, when adventurers started to visit them. That would mean actual names for the great forests, mountain ranges, rivers, and most old cities, and descriptive names for ruins, mountains, small lakes, caves, and so on, as well as Vandren settlements, since they were all made up on the spot when the people settled there.
    And now that I think of it, I should also make words for "mountain", "hill", "fortress", and "pass" in wood elven, giant, and naga languages. That's always very cool when settings do that.
    Last edited by Yora; 2012-02-10 at 10:09 AM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yora View Post
    Cool, found a couple of new ones.
    Glad you could use it! Out of curiosity, which ones?
    Quote Originally Posted by Yora View Post
    What do the other of you think about "descriptive" place names?

    On the plus side, they are easy to make. On the downside, you need to translate them when you don't play in english. And quite often translated names don't sound as cool as the original. And I am targeting an international audience here, so that's something to consider.
    I hear you. Icelandic, for instance, doesn't have the wide range of words for castles, fortresses, strongholds and so on that English has, for the simple reason that there aren't any forts here so there was no need for synonyms... So I ran into a wall when I tried to translate the name of a city I originally planned calling "Bastion"...

    It works both ways, though! Sometimes a name sounds great in your own language but either becomes awkward or simply doesn't translate to English, and occasionally something sounds better when you translate it.
    Quote Originally Posted by Yora View Post
    I tend to a mixture of both. Actual names for places that have been parts of the local culture for a long time, and descriptive names for everything where the original name is not known or that are so remote that they had not been named until very recently, when adventurers started to visit them. That would mean actual names for the great forests, mountain ranges, rivers, and most old cities, and descriptive names for ruins, mountains, small lakes, caves, and so on, as well as Vandren settlements, since they were all made up on the spot when the people settled there.
    I think you might be on to something here. Makes sense.
    Quote Originally Posted by Yora View Post
    And now that I think of it, I should also make words for "mountain", "hill", "fortress", and "pass" in wood elven, giant, and naga languages. That's always very cool when settings do that.
    I suggest multiple words in each language for those things so you can vary it a bit, I think it'll feel more realistic. Not every mountain is called "Mount X", some are called "X-peak" or "X-ridge", and some will have a name without any part of it meaning "mountain". As long as there are enough mountains named by elves so each of the words meaning "mountain" is common enough. You can even decide what nuance each term has, maybe the elves have different names for pointy mountains, flat-topped mountains and volcanoes.
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    Rich Burlew had some interesting suggestions on place-naming to reflect the history of a place, in one of his New World articles, I think.

    I'll see if I can find it and edit to add a link.

    Edit: Here it is: The New World Part 7: Names and Cultures.
    Last edited by SpaceBadger; 2012-02-10 at 12:55 PM. Reason: added link

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    Quote Originally Posted by Swooper View Post
    I suggest multiple words in each language for those things so you can vary it a bit, I think it'll feel more realistic.
    Good point. I'm slightly afraid I might be overdoing all this, but then I guess most people will never see the amount of effort that went in it but only the result. And usually, such results just feel a lot better, even if you don't know why.
    Quote Originally Posted by Swooper View Post
    Glad you could use it! Out of curiosity, which ones?
    Let's cross check the old list with the new list. I felt free to change some spellings, since english speakers just don't know how to pronounce a proper J or W, and I might have gotten some ideas for completely new names which are now completely mixed up with those I took directly from the page.

    Bryndis, Eydis, Finndis, Mirya, Nyala, Salin, Sendis, Svea.

    And I noticed that Dragon Age, from which I took quite some ideas for the BL elves, already did use a couple of icelandic names for elven NPCs. That's probably what made me think scandinavian names feel right for elves.
    Quote Originally Posted by SpaceBadger View Post
    Rich Burlew had some interesting suggestions on place-naming to reflect the history of a place, in one of his New World articles, I think.

    I'll see if I can find it and edit to add a link.

    Edit: Here it is: The New World Part 7: Names and Cultures.
    I've read that some years ago, but there are a few things that actually made me have good ideas right now. I think next thing will be making a list of things that need to be named and then sorting out which of the ancient languages got to name them.
    "Well, forget it, no apostrophes."
    That's sooo anoying. I completely failed at French, but seeing the de'Arnise family in Baldur's Gate II always makes me want to scream.

    Regarding the places that need to be named:
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    Northeastern Sea (descriptive)
    Northeastern Coast (descriptive)
    Arctic Ocean (descriptive)
    Eastern Part of the Mountains in the North (descriptive)
    Western Part of the Mountains in the North (descriptive)
    > Fortress of the Mountain Kaas
    Central Pass of the Northern Mountains (descriptive)
    Tundra beyond the Mountain Pass (descriptive)
    > Main Town of the Surri (giant)
    > Fortress of the Ice Witches (giant)
    Highlands south of the Northern Mountains (descriptive)
    Hills West of the Highlands (descriptive)
    > Town of the Snow Elves (elven)
    Tundra of the Kaas
    > Gathering Place of the Tribes
    Arctic Bay of the Kaas (descriptive)
    Mountains beyond the Bay of the Kaas (descriptive)

    Great Northern Forest (elven)
    > City of the North (elven)
    > Town of Coastal Elves (elven)
    > Town of the Forest Elves (elven)
    Mountains in the Northern Forest (descriptive)
    Border Hills (descriptive)
    > Mountain Pass Keep
    Mountains South of the Border Hills (descriptive)
    > City of the Underground Elves
    Mountains on the Coast (descriptive)
    > Town of the Forest Gnomes
    Smaller Northern Forest (elven)
    > Town of the Elven Druids (elven)
    > Tree City of the Wood Elves (elven)
    > The Black Tower (descriptive)
    Great River (giant)
    Great River Valey (giant)
    > Crossroads Keep (descriptive)
    Great Plains in the West (descriptive)
    Inner Sea (descriptive)
    Inner Sea Coast (descriptive)
    > Crystal Caves City
    > Town of the Sorcerers
    Northern Islands
    > City of the Sea Elves
    > Smugglers Haven (descriptive)
    Southern Islands
    Outer Islands

    Southern Jungle Coast
    > Dark Elves Port (elven)
    Southern Jungle (naga)
    > City of the Sun Priests (naga)
    > Fortress of the Canibal King (naga)
    Mountains in the Naga Lands (descriptive)
    Mountains West of the Jungle (descriptive)
    Forest beyond the Mountains (descriptive)

    Which is a quite impressive list. And I have lots of ideas for each of them, I just need names to start writing.
    I kind of like Border Hills and Inner Sea, I think I leave them as that.
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    Default Re: Lands of the Barbarian Kings

    Not much more to say than "Damn, I have naming things!" I've been sitting on this for over three hours and still have only a fourth of all the things named.
    Damn you!

    But for your entertainment, those small bits I already have:
    Storm Peaks: The mountains in the very North and East of the Barbarian Lands, that shield the southern lands from the Arctic beyond them. As the name implies, a very windy area.
    Storm Coast: The lands directly south of the Storm Peaks, that border the northern ocean.
    Frozen Sea: The arctic ocean.
    Korm Ran'hen: The wide valley between the Storm Peaks and the other great northern mountain range. It connects the Barbarian Lands to the arctic tundra beyond the mountains.
    Black Mountains: The third of the northern mountain ranges, located far in the west on the other side of the large bay of the Frozen Sea, that is the main body of water in the lands of the Kaas. Pretty much nothing is known about them, as the kaas rarely travel that far west and only see them in the far distance at good weather.
    Korm Enkad: The valley that connects the lands of the Kaas to the great forests of the Barbarian Lands. It lies between the bay of the Frozen Sea in the northwest, the middle northern mountain range in the northeast, and the Border Hills in the South.
    Border Hills: The long chain of low mountains that is the western border of the Barbarian Lands.
    Troll Hills: The southernmost parts of the Border Hills.
    Cloud Peaks: The mountains that lie east of the Troll Hills, south of the great forest, and north of the River Valley.
    Dragonspire Mountains: A chain of Mountains that reaches from the Inner sea far into the great forests of the Barbarian Lands.
    Kam Baran: The narrow gap between the Troll Hills and the Wyvernpeak Mountains, which connects the Barbarian Lands to the Great Plains in the west.
    Great Plains: The huge area of grassland that lies west of the Barbarian Lands, beyond the Border Hills and Kam Baran.
    Wyvernpeak Mountains: The mountain range that continues the Border Hills and Troll Hills south of Kam Baran, and form a barrier between the Great Plains and the southern jungles of the Barbarian Lands.
    Serpent Mountains: The mountains at the very eastern end of the southern jungles.
    Emerald Sea: The sea north of the southern jungles and south of the islands, that connects the Inner Sea to the eastern ocean.
    Burning Islands: The easternmost and most remote of the islands, that are home to many volcanoes and lie in the direction of the sunrise when seen from most points in the Barbarian Lands.

    Ken Hemir: An old giant fortress, now occupied by Surri sorcerers.
    Kumo Yarvi: Largest settlement in the Surri lands.
    Gen Manakan: The largest fortress city of the gnomes in the Border Hills.
    Gen Danan: Another gnome fortress city.
    Kesh Razaikan: Capital City of the lizardfolk.
    Kyasharin: Largest dark elven port city.
    Last edited by Yora; 2012-02-11 at 01:50 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Galloglaich View Post
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    Default Re: Lands of the Barbarian Kings

    Good realistic names!

  29. - Top - End - #239
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    Yora's Avatar

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    Default Re: Lands of the Barbarian Kings

    Slowly, but it's comming.

    Does anyone of you happen to be a geologist?
    It so happens that I looked over my geography and it happens that many of the features line up quite nicely. However, I am wondering if there are some things that just couldn't be where they are, and others that are absent where they should be.
    Here's a map with only the coastlines and mountains:

    Spoiler
    Show


    At the red arrows, the land is pushed together, forming mountains. The mountains in the north are very big, those in the south not so much.
    There there also happen to be two gaps in the two East-West mountain ranges, which can be connected and then be explained by the whole continent slowly ripping apart in the middle, just as is the case in East-Africa.
    Now in the very middle of the whole thing, there is a small singular mountain range at a place where there should actually be a very wide valley. And I don't want it to be a volcano, because I want lots of caves in that area and lava would make things difficult. However, what could be an explaination is, that along the seam where the continent splits, the ground on one side is steadily sinking, while on the other side the ground remains stable and appears to rise far above the surrounding area. This should crerate mountains that are very steep on one side but rather flat on the other.
    South of the mountains with the double red arrows, I want a relatively flat area with low vegetation. This can be best explained by making it a highland that was carved flat by glaciers that came over the mountains and then crept south, which tends to form such landforms. After the ice receded, the two red arrows kept pushing together, restoring the very high and steep mountains, while leaving the land south of edge of the plates relatively flat.
    What I do have a hard time with is the hills that run North-South. They are also mountains, but not very high or wide. The same range also continues in the south at the other side of a gap, which continue a lot more south after the end of the map and are by far the biggest of the mountain ranges. Maybe everything to the West of the hills and the mountains is another plate that travels in the direction east. But would that be possible if the land east of the hills travels west? Or could that area even be stationary while on one side one plate is pushing and another is pulling away? It's a relatively small area on a global scale. Can you have a rift forming paralel to a mountain range that is forming under 1000 miles away?

    Too bad Geology doesn't play a major part in fantasy games. Based on this I could say that in the very North the, second and third mountain range have the same material composition and the same fosil deposits, while the first range in the very west is something completely different.
    Last edited by Yora; 2012-02-11 at 05:22 PM.
    Spriggan's Den - Thoughts on Sword & Sorcery, RPGs, and some of my personal creations.

    Quote Originally Posted by Galloglaich View Post
    DnD is basically a comic book superhero game set in an alternate reality more related to a Renaissance Faire than any actual history or mythology from the real world.

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    Default Re: Lands of the Barbarian Kings

    Quote Originally Posted by Yora View Post
    Does anyone of you happen to be a geologist?
    It so happens that I looked over my geography and it happens that many of the features line up quite nicely. However, I am wondering if there are some things that just couldn't be where they are, and others that are absent where they should be.
    Somewhere in my "useful game links" I have a site where a geologist/gamer went into huge detail with plate tectonics and drift and subduction and everything about making realistic continents and mountain chains for gaming purposes. I will see if I can find it and post it. It was way too detailed for me - I'm keeping that kind of stuff in mind, but going more with the "where I want stuff to go" moderated by "does this =look= realistic compared to the real world?"

    ************

    OK, I couldn't find it in my saved links, but I googled and I think this is it (at Cartographer's Guild). If not the same one, then it is the same kind of thing, very detailed plate tectonics etc by a guy who seems to know what he is talking about.

    ************

    Following some of the other links pulled up in that google search, I found this Wikipedia article on fictional worldbuilding that had some useful general guidelines in the Map Making section.
    Last edited by SpaceBadger; 2012-02-11 at 06:23 PM. Reason: adding link

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