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Thread: Cakeworld

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    Colossus in the Playground
     
    Serpentine's Avatar

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    Default Cakeworld

    This is where I'm gonna take all the stuff about my campaign world from my head and actually put it down somewhere solid.

    Every now and then there'll be a bit I'm not sure about - I'll write those bits in purple. I'd welcome any thoughts on those parts - and any part, really, but criticism of other parts is more likely to be ignored
    If anyone fancies contributing a bit anywhere, you're welcome to throw something up, although obviously I get last word on what's "canon" for this place.

    On the off-chance anyone happens to read this thread just for interest: don't expect regular updates. It'll be a lot of work, which I'm likely to be only sporadically up to doing.

    Final (ha) note: to start with, this world was built in cooperation with one Goff. I can't remember which bits nor how much of his contribution remains, but consider it acknowledged.

    And now, my campaign world:

    CAKEWORLD

    SCIENCE
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    Geology
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    Cakeworld is so named because of the delicious appearance of the planet itself. Few, if any, inhabitants of the planet would know what it would look like if you sliced it open like a tasty tasty baked treat, so this is not the in-game name for the planet - in fact, at this point there isn't one. For the purpose of campaign-world-naming, though, it'll do.
    But yeah. The planet looks like a cake.


    I could go for a biscuit right now...

    The planet as a whole is in the shape of a disc which is convex on both sides - or rather, two convex discs pressed together back-to-back. It has a cool upper crust which contains the Underdark, a hot mantle, and a liquid-hot core - similar to our own planet. However, the planet's oceans cycle through the planet itself: the waters flow to the planet's edge, over the side into the cleft that divides the two planetary plates, and through to the centre as the Hypogean Ocean.
    As the water travels through the centre of the planet close to the mantle, it heats up to an amazing degree until it surges up the Pelagic Bore to the surface. This water is extremely hot, but cools down relatively quickly. The water directly over the Bore is far too hot for anything but the most extreme thermophiles to live in. The area immediately surrounding it is similar to those around volcanic vents in our world, and quickly around that it turns to more normal tropical climates and ecosystems. As the water heads for the edge, it gets cooler and cooler, producing first temperate and then, right at the edge, frigid climates - much of the water going over the edge is in the form of ice.
    The area around the Bore is extremely volatile, volcanic eruptions being extremely common. These volcanoes are the primary source for new landmasses, as continents are gradually - over thousands or tens of thousands of years - pushed by the constant flow of water to the edge of the planet. There they fall into the cleft and are ground up and melted down into the core - or follow the water along as rocks and sand - to be eventually recycled by the aforementioned volcanic activity.
    These volcanic areas could theoretically hide some extremely powerful magic items - they would have to be extremely powerful to survive the massive geological forces they would have been subjected to. On the other hand, they're more likely to turn up in the middle of a mountain than on a mountainside.


    "This ancient map was found recently in a Cliffton archive. It is clearly several thousand years and much of it was apparently based almost purely on speculation, as we can see that several continents have shifted substantially since then - one no longer even exists - and much of it is innaccurate." - in other words, I did this map ages and ages ago and have since changed my mind about things. On the other hand, it demonstrates the way the continents slide off the side, and gives an idea of the overall layout of the place. Also I quite like the effect of it.

    Cakeworld orbits around a sun similar to our own, and is itself orbited by a pair of moons much the same as ours. One moon is a little closer to Cakeworld than ours is to Earth, and the other is somewhat further away. They orbit the planet on quite different courses, but occasionally they line up in such a way as to have an impact on Cakeworld, including but not limited to more extreme tides and messing with lunar-linked creatures such as lycanthropes.


    Physics
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    For the most part, the Cakeworld universe functions the same as ours: matter is made up of different types of atoms, gravity pulls things together, light is both a particle and a wave, planets orbit around suns, mutation drives natural selection which is the basis of evolution, and so on. There is, however, one major difference: magic.
    Magic is a fundamental part of the very fabric of reality. It is like photons, like electrons and energy and the strings of string theory and maybe darkmatter. It is a basic fact of existence, and integral to its structure.
    The impact of magic on the universe is at least at a glance quite simple: it makes things possible there which wouldn't be possible here. So, for instance, although Cakeworld is effected by gravity, it couldn't exist in our world - gravity would shape it into a ball. But in the Cakeworld universe... it doesn't. Because magic makes it possible.
    It is because of magic that certain mutations which would cause an embryo to not even make it to term can even result in a new species which is completely viable. Acquired traits - such as those from a Wizard's experimentation - can be inherited. Animals can fly which should never be able to - at least not without incredible physical distortions. Some plants can move. Species - such as humanoids - which should out-compete one another into extinction are instead able to coexist for far longer than would otherwise be expected. Species which should not be able to cross-breed... can, resulting in an extremely complex tree of life. Particular body-plans, such as wings and anthropoid forms, occur much more often in a variety of genii. Geological forms which could not exist in our world, are almost common in Cakeworld. Because of magic.
    In other words, all the normal functions and factors of reality are present in the Cakeworld universe. Magic simply distorts and blurs the edges of possibility somewhat.


    Biology
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    COSMOLOGY
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    Planes
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    Theology
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    (side-note: this theological system is vaguely inspired by Hinduism. If you know anything about the way Hindu gods work, you may have a head start in getting what I'm on about)


    Far above the ordinary planes of existence are the Primordial Divinities. These transcendent beings are equal parts the creators of, created by, and a part of the universe itself. They are immortal, omnipotent and utterly incomprehensible. Few, if any, know they exist, and even fewer would pray to them - it is highly unlikely that they would answer anyway. Instead, they create lesser versions of themselves in the form of gods - in a similar manner to that in which the gods in turn manifest avatars or spawn mortals.
    There are nine of these Primordial Divinities, each one attached to/a part of an aligned plane (it should be noted, however, that they are far beyond the concepts of Good, Evil, Law and Chaos):

    - Father (LG): creation, protection, strength, masculinity, solar
    - Mother (NG): creation, protection, birth, fertility, femininity, lunar
    - Time (LN): death, endings, beginnings, renewal, the afterlife, cycles
    - Trickster (CN): anarchy, change, underhandedness, deception
    - Nature (TN): earth, fecundity, animals, plants, health, agriculture
    - Knowledge (LE): information, intellect, magic, secrets, science
    - Love (CE): romance, sex, friendship, jealousy, obsession, beauty
    - Creativity (CG): technology, art, music, literature, invention, progress
    - Violence (NE): war, murder, destruction, bloodlust, insanity

    The gods themselves might be worshipped by whole nations, encompassing dozens of grand concepts and wielding massive power over a multitude of peoples... or they might be specific to one place, one time, one tribe and a few specific things. Or anything in-between. One Primordial Divinity might manifest itself in hundreds of gods, each representing a different aspect of itself, sometimes even in direct opposition to one another. In turn, a single god might be shared by more than one Divinity, representing some aspect or combination of aspects of each of them.
    So, for example, the gods Loki and Kokopelli are both manifestations of the Trickster Divinity. Conversely, Garl Glittergold is an aspect of both Trickster and Father - perhaps a little more on the Trickster side.

    Although they are "merely" aspects of a greater consciousness, the gods are all individuals with their own personalities, goals and sense of self. Whether they themselves are aware of the existence of the Primordial Divinities, whether they know themselves to be aspects of them or revere them as mortals do gods, is debatable.

    Partial History of the Gods
    Eons ago, in the times after the multiverse first came into being, the oldest gods roamed freely in their true forms across all the planes. They inevitably came into contact with one another and, as they are wont to, quickly came into conflict as well. Arguments came to blows, blows became battles and battles escalated into war. Whole continents crumbled beneath their violence, and they were at risk of tearing the Material Plane apart.
    It is not known who first noticed the danger, who pointed it out to the others, initiated the peace talks and actually got the agreements to stick. What is known is the results: no god walks the planes in their true form. Battles, if they must be fought, are to be fought elsewhere, on some other reality that can handle the violence, or else indirectly through influence and other methods. They may visit the Material Plane, but only for peaceful purposes and in severely reduced (if still powerful) form - usually an avatar.

    When a god decides to visit the Material Plane, it is a time of both great trepidation and great celebration on the part of their worshippers: on the one hand, they may have an opportunity to meet and talk with their god personally. On the other, a trip to the Plane generally means a lack of metaphysical contact between deity and worshippers - in other words, divine spellcasters tend to lose the use of their spells for the duration of the visit, unless the god makes some arrangement beforehand.
    Most of these gods have some personal item - usually a weapon or a piece of armour - that is left on the Material Plane. Between visits, it is often kept as a sacred relic by the god's worshippers, revered and treasured. One of the first things a god usually does in their trip to the Material Plane is to seek out and reclaim their item, and carry it for their journey. Often they return it to whence they took it before leaving, but just as often they don't.


    The Gods of Cakeworld
    Pretty much any god in any source book is likely to be worshipped somewhere on or around Cakeworld. There may be tweaks (no way was Hades Evil...), but chances are, if a player wants to worship a god, they can.
    I have also, however, statted up a few gods specifically for this world. They are as follows:

    Inti (based on the Incan God of the Sun)
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    Inti

    Giver of Life, The Smiling Sun
    Greater Deity
    Primordial Divinity: Father
    Symbol: A benign sun face surrounded by long rays.
    Home Plane: Elysium
    Alignment: Lawful Good
    Portfolio: Sun, light, strength, healing, life, protection, rulership.
    Worshippers: Bards, rangers, druids, healers, rulers, nobles, guards, Good warriors.
    Cleric alignments: LG, NG, LN.
    Domains: Good, Healing, Life, Nobility, Protection, Strength, Sun
    Favoured weapon: Shields.
    Inti is the Handia (South American - Inca) equivalent/counterpart to Pelor, with more emphasis on protection and authority. He is a strong, noble warrior in shining gold armour and his great shield. He is the defender of the weak and a bastion of justice. He is commonly worshipped by farmers who rely on the sun for their livelihoods, and by just kings and the defenders of good.
    Dogma
    Inti is a stoic but kind god. He teaches that it is the duty of the strong to protect the weak. Just as the burning sun nurtures the delicate seedling until it grows into a strong and sturdy tree, so too should his mighty followers bolster the weak to make them strong enough to stand on their own.
    Clergy and Temples
    Gold is the colour and material most favoured by the clerics of Inti. Their temples are often heavily decorated with the metal, and are usually wide open to the sunshine. The clerics are usually patient and protective, but have backbones of steel and hearts of diamond. They believe in strength and toughness, and in sharing those with the people without until they have enough of their own. They will defend those in need, but consider just as important teaching them to defend themselves.
    Personal Attributes
    Cleric/Fighter(or Warblade)/Paladin(or Crusader)
    Wields the Vanguard of Inti.

    Golden Vanguard of Inti
    Golden Vanguard of Inti is a heavy shield made of polished ebony with a shining, benignly smiling sun – the symbol of the god Inti – made of gold on the front, with sharp spikes pointing out from the rays.



    Nonlegacy Game Statistics: +1 Spiked heavy wooden shield; Cost 1,025gp; Weight 12lb.
    Omen: Golden Vanguard of Inti always feels very warm to the touch, as though left in the sun. It is a tower shield, but can be wielded as though it is a heavy shield.

    History
    When the god Inti visits the material plane, he seeks out the Vanguard as his own personal shield.

    Legacy Rituals
    Two rituals are required to unlock all the abilities of Golden Vanguard of Inti.
    Inti Raymi: Organise a festival in Inti’s honour. For three days you must fast, refrain from sexual intercourse, and have no fire lit in your presence. Then you must arrange feasting for the next nine days, all animals slaughtered for meat first consecrated to Inti and sacrificed in his honour. Cost: 1,500gp. Feat Granted: Least Legacy (Golden Vanguard of Inti).
    Light a Dark Place: You must assist an oppressed or endangered community by both freeing it from its threat and teach the people or establish something that will assist them in protecting themselves in the future. Cost: 11,500gp. Feat Granted: Lesser Legacy (Golden Vanguard of Inti).

    Personal Cost
    The wielder must spend at least one hour in direct natural sunlight every day. Once a week, he must meditate in direct natural sunlight for one hour plus one for every 5 levels. These hours do not have to be consecutive (e.g. you do not have to start over if it gets cloudy half-way through).

    Wielder Requirements
    Golden Vanguard of Inti can be wielded by clerics, paladins, druids, favoured souls and other devout military classes.

    Golden Vanguard of Inti Wielder Requirements
    Ability to cast 1st-level divine spells
    Any nonevil, nonchaotic alignment
    Base attack bonus +2

    {table]Wielder Level|Abilities
    5th|+1 bashing spiked heavy wooden shield (1d8 damage and as +1 weapon when bashing)
    6th|Shining Might +2
    7th|+2 bashing +1 spiked heavy wooden shield
    8th|Luminous Brawn
    9th|Shining Might +4
    10th|+2 bashing spiked heavy wooden shield
    11th|Golden Grandeur
    12th|Inti’s Brilliance
    13th|+2 bashing brutal surge spiked heavy wooden shield
    14th|Shining Might +6
    15th|
    16th|+3 bashing brutal surge spiked heavy wooden shield[/table]
    Legacy Item Abilities
    All the following are legacy item abilities of Golden Vanguard of Inti.
    Shining Might (Su): At 6th level, you are infused with some of Inti’s power, gaining a +2 enhancement bonus to Strength. This enhancement increases to +4 at level 9 and to +6 at level 14.
    Luminous Brawn (Su): At 8th level and higher, you gain a +4 bonus on the opposed Strength check made during a bull rush attempt, and you push your opponent back an additional 5 feet if the attempt is successful.
    Golden Grandeur (Sp): From 11th level, you are under the effect of enlarge person. This is constant, and can be suppressed.
    Inti’s Brilliance (Sp): Starting at 13th level, the golden sun can emit a beam of light equivalent to a daylight spell at will. Caster level 10th.


    Kokopelli (based on a native American God
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    Kokopelli

    The Trickster, Coyote, Huehuecoyotl, The Joker
    Greater Deity
    Primordial Divinity: Trickster
    Symbol: A humpbacked flute-player, a face of many expressions, a smiling coyote head. Symbols vary greatly among different worshippers, depending on the aspects upon which they focus.
    Home Plane: Various, especially Chaotically-aligned ones. Unusually active on the Material Plane.
    Alignment: Chaotic Neutral
    Portfolio: Trickery; Entertainment, music, art, jokes, humour, comedy, performance in general - both good and bad: Only mediocrity is boring; Fertility - especially when undesired: Special protector of its unwanted products, and of orphans, is often involved in designing special fates for them; Luck - good and bad, double-edged, and disguised; Theft and mischief; Thinking around corners, problem-solving, creativity - convoluted and complicated solutions are far more interesting than straight-line logic; Intelligence, wit, cleverness; Coincidence, irony; Justice - preferably fitting, personal and twisted; Ambiguity and confusion - half-breeds, hermaphrodites, individuals of confused or atypical gender, the insane, shape-shifters, polymorphed creatures, and the lost (literally and metaphorically), among others, are under his personal protection... and are his personal playthings; Opposition to mediocrity - if there's anything he can't stand, it's the ordinary; Drugs - especially hallucinagens, often an important part of his worship; Phobias, fetishes and irrationality; Time - especially "early" and "late", and the tricks time can play; Contradiction; Extreme emotions; Tears - of laughter and sadness; Inconvenience; Weather (local only, preferably dramatic, inconvenient and/or inappropriate); Noise, and the absence of it; Crowded, anarchic groups of people - battles, riots, cities; The Butterfly Effect, obscure causality; Double-edged swords; Deception - through both lies and misdirection, and creative application of the truth.
    Worshippers: Anyone, midwives, rogues, bards.
    Cleric alignments: CE, CN, CG, N
    Domains: Chaos, Liberation, Luck, Madness, Transformation, Trickery
    Favoured Weapon: Wit. Failing that, improvised weapons.
    Kokopelli is possibly closer to his Primordial Divinity than any other god. Worship, description and general nature of the trickster god varies between groups of worshippers.
    Dogma
    Kokopelli is a mercurial and complex deity, and the beliefs and practices associated with him vary dramatically from place to place, or even between people of the same tribe. Generally, he teaches – sometimes cruelly – that life is unpredictable and capricious, and that it is better to be flexible and take things as they come than to try to plan for everything. He is of the opinion that it is far better to fail spectacularly than to be merely adequate, and encourages his worshippers to be exceptional in everything they do.
    Clergy and Temples
    The worship of Kokopelli is surprisingly well-regarded in many communities. His festivals are huge events, and many tribes consider him their personal patron or even an ancestor.
    Few of Kokopelli’s clergy have that as their primary occupation – many double as midwives or entertainers, and a large number of his Clerics are also Rogues or Bards. He also has few fixed temples – most of his worship is temporally focussed, rather than geographically, especially at celebrations or important events such as a birth. Sometimes a small temporary shrine will pop up, usually nearby some peculiar feature or event, where people will leave small offerings. There are also a few travelling temples, caravans devoted to Kokopelli, that tend to follow local festivals – whether Kokopelli’s or to crash some other god’s. More often individuals will perform their own small rituals when, where and how it seems right to them.
    Personal Attributes
    Rogue/Bard/Cleric
    Usually has a musical instrument at hand.


    Asteleben, God of the Darker Side of Evolution
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    Asteleben

    Thresher, Scourge of Infants, The Ordeal, The Improver of Lines, The Perfector of Species.
    Greater Deity
    Primordial Divinity: Nature, Death, Violence (in that order)
    Symbol: Two sickles attached end-to end.
    Home Plane: Laboratory-Reserve in The Grey Waste
    Alignment: Neutral Evil
    Portfolio: Evolution, natural selection, eugenics, social Darwinism, bigotry, racial anthropology, nature, ecology, predator-prey relationships, life, death, reproduction, survival of the fittest.
    Worshippers: Rangers, druids, barbarians, eugenicists, believers in a “master race”, biological scientists and experimenters.
    Cleric alignments: NE, LE, CE, TN.
    Domains: Animal, Competition, Death, Destruction, Endurance, Life, Plant, Strength, War
    Favoured weapon: Sickle.
    Asteleben embodies the darker side of nature. He resembles an aging gardener or farmer wearing practical, well-worn clothes, the sort of man who would pluck weeds and throw them on the compost without a second thought, or who could pick out weak lambs from the flock to be slaughtered. He looks like an ordinary man who is both willing and capable of performing the grittier duties of keeping a healthy flock, except that his “flock” includes all living things.
    Dogma
    Asteleben teaches that through the death (or failure to reproduce) of individuals the species as a whole is improved. The removal of the weak and undesirable elements strengthens the whole. It is both inevitable and necessary that the fit survive, and the unfit perish. It is the way nature works, and the way it constantly improves itself. As nature does in her forests, so Asteleben’s worshippers must do in their communities.
    Clergy and Temples
    The few temples of Asteleben that exist have a hierarchy based on merit, determined by, more or less, the ability to take and hold authority. The temples themselves often feature altars for the sacrifice of any imperfect animals or people, and sometimes facilities for experiments in breeding.
    Most organised worship is incorporated into a whole society, the religious leaders often literally having the power of life and death over individuals. Such communities usually practice some sort of child testing and condoned infanticide, and imperfect individuals are rarely tolerated – if they are allowed to live or to enter the community, they are never allowed to breed.
    Rulers desiring to rule a pure, superior people, more ruthless breeders of animals and plants, and druids with an interest in the evolutionary forces of nature are among Asteleben’s more prominent worshippers. His clergy tend to prefer dark earthy colours, such as dark green, brown or red.
    Personal Attributes
    Druid/Ranger
    Wields two sickles.



    Afterlife
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    When a creature dies, their spirit leaves their body and moves onto the Ethereal Plane. It travels along this Plane, drawn to the nearest Gate.
    The journey through the Ethereal Plane can be quite dangerous for a newly detached soul. In some places there may be spectral creatures who hunt them, or traps set by unscrupulous necromancers. Sometimes, for a variety of reasons, many unknown, a soul gets lost on its journey: perhaps a piece of unfinished business or an overwhelming desire for revenge drowns out the pull of its gate, or strange magics distort it, or sometimes perhaps a soul just isn't ready for the journey.
    Many different religions have their own beliefs and traditions for preventing these delayed journeys. Several quite old death cults, for example, place flags or rags along the path to Gates. These look like faded, frayed scraps of cloth on the Material Plane, but on the Ethereal Plane glow an intense and brilliant scarlet. These, it is hoped, will help guide wayward spirits to their afterlife. For some, their god of death himself will guide their path.


    Gates are naturally occurring conduits between the planes. Physically, they can have any form: the opening of a cave, a gap between two trees, a canyon. When they occur in civilised areas, builders tend to unconsciously incorporate them into their designs. So they often also have the form of a gate through a fence, or under a bridge, or the great doors of some temple, or at the centre of a crossroads.
    All gates lead to all the planes, but that is where their similarity to one another tends to stop. Some are open to all the planes all the time, while others cycle through the planes over days or months or even centuries. Most allow spirits to travel through to any plane at any time, while others require spirits to wait until the appropriate plane has its turn, resulting of a back-up of spirits loitering in the area. Some are accessible with no effort, or at certain times, or under certain conditions, or with a particular ritual, or by doing some small thing such as whistling the right tune or wearing the correct colour.
    Often Gates are quite far apart. On the other hand, some places, for reasons unknown, have a dense concentration of Gates.
    Until a creature passes through a Gate, it is relatively straightforward to resurrect them: all resurrection spells function as normal. However, once they have passed through a Gate, they may only return through one. This requires the use of the usual spells, and - as partially described above - some other factor. Most often, resurrecting a creature that has passed through a Gate requires the casting of a resurrection spell with substantial - sometimes expensive, sometimes dangerous - additional rituals, at the right time. This process can be quite risky, as there is no guarantee that the desired spirit will be the only thing to come through when the Gate is opened.
    Gates are usually only permeable to spirits, gods and similar beings, although under some conditions or using certain magics it is possible for other creatures to pass through. The gate spell, for instance, must be cast on a Gate.

    Sample Gate
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    The Faraway Tree is an enormous tree growing in the middle of an ancient, sylvan forest. The tree is so tall that its topmost branches reach into the clouds and it is wide enough to contain small houses carved into its trunk. At the top of the tree is a ladder, climbing which takes one through the clouds and through a Gate. This Gate randomly cycles through all (or many of) the planes, especially the micro- and quasiplanes. It stays open at each plane for anywhere from hours to days, and if a visitor doesn't go back through the gate before the plane moves on they are stuck there until it returns or they find some other means to travel between the planes.


    Sample Gate Resurrection
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    When Ellywick, Sorcerer/Cleric of Garl Glittergold/Mystic Theurge was slain by a yuan-ti hunter, she passed through a nearby Gate to the realm of her patron deity before her companions were able to access resurrection magic. Fortunately, they were able to find a Cleric at the next city at which they arrived who knew of the nearest Gate, and - for a price - was willing to take them there and perform the necessary rituals to bring her back.
    They had to wait several weeks before they were able to do this, however, as the gate could only be opened on the night of a full moon.
    This particular Gate was in the form of a stone archway deep in a humongous and glorious gemstone canyon, where every layer of stone was a different semiprecious gem.
    The eye-aching glamour of Rainbow Canyon of the Gate reflected the Gate itself, for it had a particularly strong connection to the quasielemental Plane of Radiance, and is usually partially open to that plane from both sides. Thus, sometime before, a radiant chaos dragon had made its way through the Gate and found itself a home nearby in the Rainbow Canyon. Before the Cleric could perform his rituals to open the Gate to the plane on which Ellywick's soul resided, her companions had to defeat the attacking dragon.
    Once that was done, the ritual took several hours, and was effectively a more complicated, resource-heavy version of True Resurrection.

    What happens to a soul once it has passed through its Gate to the afterlife depends on a variety of factors, including the religion to which they adhere, the god/s they personally worship, the manner in which they lived their lives and how it adhered to their doctrine, their beliefs, and so on. In absence of the above, the default is for a spirit to reside in the plane that matches their alignment. They may, instead, be reincarnated, or transformed into a denizen of that plane.
    A True Neutral creature, or one who worships nature, will tend to be returned to the Material Plane when they pass through their Gate, but on a different level of reality. They are often reincarnated, or reincorporated into the material of the world. Sometimes they become new fey, or the spirit of, say, a stream or a mountain.


    Alignment
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    GEOGRAPHY
    Last edited by Serpentine; 2012-11-07 at 09:58 AM.

  2. - Top - End - #2
    Halfling in the Playground
     
    Flumph

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    Default Re: Cakeworld

    I like this. A lot. I have a few questions though: What force(s) brings the water and other material coming off the rimfall back into the interplacial cleft? Is there and opposite-type gravity on the surface pointing 'down' that would allow people to walk around upside-down relative to the upper surface?

    Your terminology and world-shape remind me a lot of the Discworld, which is pretty awesome, whether intentional or not. Are all 'planets' in this campaign setting similar in there appearance? Are there perhaps some with water sliding out of their interplacial clefts to run into their pelagic bores and then repeatedly cycled in such a way?

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    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Ninjadeadbeard's Avatar

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    Default Re: Cakeworld

    I second the Discworld sentiment. This world looks...tasty. But, is it a lie? I will have to keep my eyes on this. Is the moon a crumble? Or a pie? This is making me hungry.

    Also, awesome map is awesome! How did you make it? Photoshop? By hand?
    Quote Originally Posted by Zap Dynamic View Post
    Ninjadeadbeard just ninja'd my post. How apt.
    I also make Maps! Request by PM!

  4. - Top - End - #4
    Colossus in the Playground
     
    Serpentine's Avatar

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    Default Re: Cakeworld

    Quote Originally Posted by Gallus View Post
    I like this. A lot. I have a few questions though: What force(s) brings the water and other material coming off the rimfall back into the interplacial cleft? Is there and opposite-type gravity on the surface pointing 'down' that would allow people to walk around upside-down relative to the upper surface?
    Gravity + magic Also I figure it's sheer pressure that drives the water out of the middle again.
    I forgot to do the physics side of it, actually. Should that go in Cosmology, do you think, or should I have a separate "Science" category? I'll cover evolution and the like in it, while I'm at it.
    Quote Originally Posted by Gallus View Post
    Your terminology and world-shape remind me a lot of the Discworld, which is pretty awesome, whether intentional or not.
    It's definitely inspired by it. In fact, the "warm at the centre, cold at the edge" stuff was in large part worked out to avoid being too close a copy of Discworld.
    Quote Originally Posted by Gallus View Post
    Are all 'planets' in this campaign setting similar in there appearance? Are there perhaps some with water sliding out of their interplacial clefts to run into their pelagic bores and then repeatedly cycled in such a way?
    There could be any sort of planet in this universe. Hell, Discworld itself might be floating out there somewhere...
    Quote Originally Posted by Ninjadeadbeard View Post
    Also, awesome map is awesome! How did you make it? Photoshop? By hand?
    Thanks! They were both drawn by hand, then fiddled with in Photoshop. Not sure whether you saw it, but I had to adjust the planet diagram to make it look more geological (originally the layers sort of curved inwards instead of following the Bore out, which made no sense).

  5. - Top - End - #5
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    Default Re: Cakeworld

    I like the ideas and am also enough of a fan of Discworld to appreciate the similarity.

    The world would probably not have one single name to the natives anyway. (Just about) every ethnic group and nation would have its own name for the world.

    If continental drift is such that a couple thousand years change the map totally, are there even historic cities at hand? How much of society is nomadic and to what degree?
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    Default Re: Cakeworld

    It's not totally changed. That sorta three-pronged continent is hanging off the edge a little bit at one corner, and the one next to it is closer than I drew there. But mostly I just changed things after I drew the map...

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    Doesn't look much like a cake to me... On the other hand, I'm not sure what it does look like. Maybe a French macaron?
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    As for ecology: could it be that not every part of the cake is stable? As in, at some places the surface has little or no crust to seperate it from the hot inner layers, leaving a utterly inhospitable chunk of land of lifeless land?

    Perhapes creatures have developted to adapt to the structure: Great serpents lay ther very durable eggs at the Rim only to have them be scattered vie the Bores, creating seasons where foot-long meaty tubes can be scooped up by the hundreds. This could be a time in which primitive cultures can partake in a salmon-like collecting season, which might be interesting. Over time, these small "Bore Worms" make there way down to the ends of the cake, in which they breed like there forfathers did while packing on the pounds. Hence, the young and tasty Bore Worms become the mighty Rim Wyrms, able to hunt both whale, men, and younger Rim Wyrms.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Qwertystop View Post
    Doesn't look much like a cake to me... On the other hand, I'm not sure what it does look like. Maybe a French macaron?
    On rethinking, I am now sure.

    All in favor of renaming this to Macaronworld?

    (Kidding)
    Quote Originally Posted by jamieth View Post
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    Quote Originally Posted by Qwertystop View Post
    Doesn't look much like a cake to me... On the other hand, I'm not sure what it does look like. Maybe a French macaron?
    Whatever it is, it makes me hungry.
    Quote Originally Posted by Pokonic View Post
    As for ecology: could it be that not every part of the cake is stable? As in, at some places the surface has little or no crust to seperate it from the hot inner layers, leaving a utterly inhospitable chunk of land of lifeless land?
    There are thin spots and similar that allow for volcanoes and the like away from the very centre. I have also got one continent in particular that definitely falls under the category of "inhospitable chunk of lifeless land", but for another reason.
    Quote Originally Posted by Pokonic View Post
    Perhapes creatures have developted to adapt to the structure: Great serpents lay ther very durable eggs at the Rim only to have them be scattered vie the Bores, creating seasons where foot-long meaty tubes can be scooped up by the hundreds. This could be a time in which primitive cultures can partake in a salmon-like collecting season, which might be interesting. Over time, these small "Bore Worms" make there way down to the ends of the cake, in which they breed like there forfathers did while packing on the pounds. Hence, the young and tasty Bore Worms become the mighty Rim Wyrms, able to hunt both whale, men, and younger Rim Wyrms.
    I haven't thought about things like that, but I quite like that idea for something like that which uses the planet's cycles for their lifecycles. Whatever it is, it would have to be able to withstand very hot temperatures when young and very cold temperatures when mature, and their eggs would have to withstand first very cold and then very hot temperatures.
    Anyone fancy statting me up a Cakeworld Seaserpent?
    Last edited by Serpentine; 2012-04-23 at 05:26 PM.

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    Whoa, triple-digit views already Makes me feel like I probably ought to actually write stuff...

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    I certainly like the idea, will be watching earnestly.

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    Default Re: Cakeworld

    Interesting... I'll have to follow this.

    Just a few observations etc...

    I'm assuming the rate of continental drift slows as the continents near the edge due to the greater area for them as opposed to the centre where everything is crammed together?
    Do the continents kind of cling to the edge before sliding over?

    I'm also curious as to what you meant by a few thousand years... Long enough for great empires to be established in regions of Mediterranean climate and for them to build great cities to stand the test of time, only for it to fall as the climate gets too cold for them to adjust, leading to their cities to be abandoned in a frozen wasteland for thousands of years waiting for intrepid adventurers to attempt to steal the fabled treasures lying in the crypts beneath the great temple?
    Or short enough that no sane person builds anything well enough to stand for two thousand years because they'll be packing up and moving closer to the centre long before it falls down?
    In short... How many thousands of years are we talking about?

    Also, is there anything on the other side? Has anyone bothered to go and look? Obviously a journey of epic proportions that would make Journey to the Centre of the Earth look like a picnic in the park in comparison.)
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    Quote Originally Posted by Elemental View Post
    I'm assuming the rate of continental drift slows as the continents near the edge due to the greater area for them as opposed to the centre where everything is crammed together?
    Yeah, I think so. Also larger landmasses move more slowly than smaller ones, which would mean more islands in the centre and more continents at the edge.
    Quote Originally Posted by Elemental View Post
    Do the continents kind of cling to the edge before sliding over?
    I think it depends on the size of them. Some will sort of stick out over the edge for a while before the sticking-out part breaks off and falls over the edge. Others - particularly smaller ones - will sort of tilt over as one piece.
    Quote Originally Posted by Elemental View Post
    I'm also curious as to what you meant by a few thousand years... Long enough for great empires to be established in regions of Mediterranean climate and for them to build great cities to stand the test of time, only for it to fall as the climate gets too cold for them to adjust, leading to their cities to be abandoned in a frozen wasteland for thousands of years waiting for intrepid adventurers to attempt to steal the fabled treasures lying in the crypts beneath the great temple?
    Or short enough that no sane person builds anything well enough to stand for two thousand years because they'll be packing up and moving closer to the centre long before it falls down?
    In short... How many thousands of years are we talking about?
    I'm really uncertain about time-scale. I'm terrible at it at the best of times. I'm thinking more the former, though. How does a rough average of 10,000 years between first coming up in a volcano, forming into a landmass and slipping over the edge sound?
    Quote Originally Posted by Elemental View Post
    Also, is there anything on the other side? Has anyone bothered to go and look? Obviously a journey of epic proportions that would make Journey to the Centre of the Earth look like a picnic in the park in comparison.)
    Yep, there's something on the other side. I've only worked on this one side, so almost everything will be about it, but it's pretty much the same thing on the other side - except opposite! :D ...it'll make sense later.

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    Well, this is a cool idea for a world, I will have to keep an eye on this.
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    Default Re: Cakeworld

    I'm afraid all these interested people are gonna be disappointed when most of it doesn't really have anything to do with the planet's geology <.<

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    Geology will inevitably affect civilization. if larger landmasses move slower and are often joined by smaller ones, coastal cities facing inward can be unreliable. Assuming the very edge is almost as uninhabitable as the fresh hot islands, of the ~10 000 years that any single piece of land exists it will only be habitable for about 5000-8000 (a very rough estimate) years.

    Farmers have little cause to worry - one generation will not see all that much change. Villages might slowly move inward, at least trying to avoid going so far outward as to no longer have viable crops.

    Big cities are more threatened - land still contorts every so often - presumably, two continents colliding creates earthquakes on both. Even on a comparatively stable world - our Earth, there are cities like Venice which are sinking fast.

    A culture is unlikely to be too focused on specific geography - what is prime real estate now might be just a bit too cold a millenia from now. A unified language and religion would be more endemic to a faction.
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    Default Re: Cakeworld

    Oh, a list of some animals, if you dont mind:

    Rock Munchers: Small flying reptiles. Primaraly blackish in color, with adults gaining a greenish tinge on there horns and tail. No arms, but with moderate-sized wings and a short, rather stubby tail. Rather than conventinal food, they prefer to eat the mineral-rich rock formed after volcanic activty, causing the varing pit-like areas where the crust is thinner to be the prime breeding grounds of the species. Notably, they are not actualy fireproof, but they have the supernatural ability to detect the varying shifts in the crust, and often flee to safter grounds, which are usualy on another continent. Great swarms of the creatures can be consumed by large flying creatures as if they where bugs being caught by a bat.

    Grashers (AKA Polar Bear Whales.):

    These great kings of the sea are well known amongst those who dwell near the Rim. Bulky and unweildy on land, there body is massive, with there legs supporting not only a thick body but a large flippered tail behind them. Yet, the fact that they are masters of water is unchalanged. Using its large tail in conjunction with its webbed feet, they often chase pods of animals with frighting speed. The color combontation of white-on-black is known by sailors as the traditinal colors of mourning, due to the idea that missing swimmers near the places they exist are more often than not eaten by them at there leisure.
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    Default Re: Cakeworld

    Heheh. Interesting.

    I've updated the "science" bit somewhat.

    I want to get onto Cosmology, but that will involve diagrams and I'm lazy...

    edit: I'll do theology. It requires some careful wording, but no diagrams.

    edit mk. 2: Dammit! Last night I thought of the perfect name for these over-deities, and now I can't remember it! I think it started with A...
    Last edited by Serpentine; 2012-04-24 at 06:31 PM.

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    Okay, Theology is in. Some thoughts are welcome, there.

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    Default Re: Cakeworld

    I really, really, really like the idea behind Asteleben. His worshipers could make for some mighty interesting villains, or heroes even.
    Icedaemon mentioned that culture would be determined more by non-material things, like religion and language instead of a particular homeland; I think as an outgrowth of that there should at least be one Mystery Cult style secret religion (replete with secret hand signs, symbols, rituals and over-arching missions that affect international politics and may decide who ends up controlling any number of kingdoms and empires), that spans all of Cakeworld across racial and state lines.

    As for the primordials, perhaps steal and slightly change one of the terms of Hinduism while mixing in a reference to the Grecian Titans? (Vistedenes comes to mind)
    I think Death and Violence could be folded together to become Destruction, based on that being Shiva's domain in Hinduism. Likewise, Time seems more like a subset of Nature, especially when it comes to seasonal patterns, and the ever-moving flow of water towards the Rim- which might be deemed so important as to be defied itself, perhaps as a kind of impersonal fate-chance-fortune-luck deity? "May the Flow be with you", "The Flow directs all actions" that kind of stuff, similar to the Force.

    To add more Grecian-type flavor, could the Creativity primordial come down in
    different Muse forms, one for each specific artistic of technological form? And what of any children that may have resulted of God-mortal romances that happened during the battle, of in more recent times? Could their be blood-lines who dedicate themselves to keeping the blood of their God pure, perhaps with inbreeding as a result (A la the Egyptian dynasties and the Hapsburgs)?

    In you description of the Mother primordial you mention the moon, but haven't included any physical description of what kind, and how many moons
    Cakeworld has, or what effect their gravity would have on the tides.

    Also, though this may be too soon, as the continual outward 'tide' has such a great effect on this world, I would think Darfellans would definitely show up. Perhaps they would be traders/mercenaries/travel guides who domesticate whale-like creatures that could hold land-dwelling passengers inside their mouths?

    That's all I've got right now, but over-all this still seems like a freaking awesome idea. Great stuff so far, keep up the good work!

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    Default Re: Cakeworld

    Quote Originally Posted by Gallus View Post
    I really, really, really like the idea behind Asteleben. His worshipers could make for some mighty interesting villains, or heroes even.
    Yeah, I'm pretty happy with him
    Quote Originally Posted by Gallus View Post
    Icedaemon mentioned that culture would be determined more by non-material things, like religion and language instead of a particular homeland;
    I do intend it to be quite a lot slower than that - more like early humans gradually moving southward as the world goes into an ice age or slowly shifting outwards as a desert grows, rather than a conscious picking up and moving; adaptation and slow shift rather than nomadity. The very longest lived creatures will remember when such-and-such a civilisation was a tropical one, but, say, humans should be more "hey grandpa, tell us again the old legend of when it didn't snow every year!" Considering the greater age range of creatures in a fantasy world, should I up the timescale?
    Quote Originally Posted by Gallus View Post
    I think as an outgrowth of that there should at least be one Mystery Cult style secret religion (replete with secret hand signs, symbols, rituals and over-arching missions that affect international politics and may decide who ends up controlling any number of kingdoms and empires), that spans all of Cakeworld across racial and state lines.
    Sure, something like that probably exists. Maybe it's that thing with the dragons...
    Quote Originally Posted by Gallus View Post
    As for the primordials, perhaps steal and slightly change one of the terms of Hinduism while mixing in a reference to the Grecian Titans? (Vistedenes comes to mind)
    Maybe. I'll have a look at them sometime. Primordial Divinities is okay for now, though, I think.
    Quote Originally Posted by Gallus View Post
    I think Death and Violence could be folded together to become Destruction, based on that being Shiva's domain in Hinduism. Likewise, Time seems more like a subset of Nature, especially when it comes to seasonal patterns, and the ever-moving flow of water towards the Rim- which might be deemed so important as to be defied itself, perhaps as a kind of impersonal fate-chance-fortune-luck deity? "May the Flow be with you", "The Flow directs all actions" that kind of stuff, similar to the Force.
    No, Death and Violence are definitely separate - look at Hades and Ares; most big pantheons have a Death and a War separate.
    To give an idea of what I'm going for, we'll look at the Greek gods: You have Zeus - the Father, Hera - the Mother, Hades - Death, Ares - War, Aphrodite - Love (which is why I'm seriously considering putting Love in, because most big pantheons have it), Hermes - Trickster. There is also Gaia - Earth and Cronos - time. Hephaestus would be the industry and invention side of Creativity, while Apollo would be more the art and music side - but I could possibly fold them into Knowledge, although I might have to change the name somewhat. On that note, I think Athena and Asclepius would be Knowledge.
    So, I think I need Love. I could get that by either folding Time into Death and/or Nature, or putting Creativity into Knowledge. I'm leaning towards the former, although I dislike not having a Cronos as a Primordial, and even then I'd like input on a better name than Creativity.
    Quote Originally Posted by Gallus View Post
    To add more Grecian-type flavor, could the Creativity primordial come down in
    different Muse forms, one for each specific artistic of technological form?
    That'd be an aspect, but it'd also be part of specific religions.
    Quote Originally Posted by Gallus View Post
    And what of any children that may have resulted of God-mortal romances that happened during the battle, of in more recent times? Could their be blood-lines who dedicate themselves to keeping the blood of their God pure, perhaps with inbreeding as a result (A la the Egyptian dynasties and the Hapsburgs)?
    Sure, that's quite possible.
    Quote Originally Posted by Gallus View Post
    In you description of the Mother primordial you mention the moon, but haven't included any physical description of what kind, and how many moons Cakeworld has, or what effect their gravity would have on the tides.
    I've pretty much defaulted to "one", and "the same as here, more or less". Too hard to work out the impact on lycanthropes and change lunar symbolism and stuff
    Quote Originally Posted by Gallus View Post
    Also, though this may be too soon, as the continual outward 'tide' has such a great effect on this world, I would think Darfellans would definitely show up. Perhaps they would be traders/mercenaries/travel guides who domesticate whale-like creatures that could hold land-dwelling passengers inside their mouths?
    *googles* Oh yeah, those guys! I like Darfellans. I'm sure they're around somewhere - at the very least, there is a continent that's all giants, so I'm sure they'd be there.
    edit: Oh, got them mixed up with someone else. I imagine these guys being either around the centre, with all the islands, or right close to the edge...
    Quote Originally Posted by Gallus View Post
    That's all I've got right now, but over-all this still seems like a freaking awesome idea. Great stuff so far, keep up the good work!
    Thanks a lot!
    Last edited by Serpentine; 2012-04-25 at 08:18 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Serpentine View Post
    edit: Oh, got them mixed up with someone else. I imagine these guys being either around the centre, with all the islands, or right close to the edge...
    Thanks a lot!
    Oh, a question: can we assume that Tremoria is basicly a desert-ish place? Just looking over some ideas and found that many could fit in such a area.

    And on Gods: You could fold Creativity into Inteligence and Nature, perhapes a bit with Trickster (weird magics, shapeshifting, all those could fit under it''s domain), but that would mean that it would need to avoid looking to much like Mother and Fathers stuff.
    Well, one time at Bard camp...
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    You have taught me something!

    I didn't know Kokopelli was anything other than a character in the comics in the margins of Muse magazine until this.
    Quote Originally Posted by jamieth View Post
    ...though Talla does her best to sound objective and impartial, it doesn't cover stuff like "ask a 9-year-old to tank for the party."

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    Default Re: Cakeworld

    I am intrigued by how you picked Tremoria as the deserty place... Too bad you're wrong (it's actually DINOSAURS! :O) I'm also curious about which continent you think is Tremoria. I'll hear your thoughts on it, though.

    One possibility might be to detach Time from the aligned planes, and make it an "Everywhere" being. Then I can have my cake and eat it too - Father, Mother, Death, Knowledge, Love, Creativity, Trickster, Nature, Violence and Time over all.

    edit: Oh yeah, Kokopelli's great. In fact, I made a dungeon 'specially for him which was just meant to be a side quest, and now a little bit of the god himself is literally coming along with the party in the form of an intelligent staff and at least two characters seem to have basically converted to him.
    Last edited by Serpentine; 2012-04-25 at 03:47 PM.

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    Well, in my fevered mind, I quickly put little labels on them based on there names. Hence, Gensia was a fertile-yet-wild land, Handia contained the least "monsters", with the varying lands and peoples not needing some great dragon or another to tell them what to do (as in, focusing on the "hand" part of the name to construct a mildly humanoid-centric place), Inventia being rather advanced as a whole, yet suffering from the actions there mages infliced on the now-potent wildlife (Do not feed the Rhino-Snakes) , and Tremoria being a dry, rocky land, perhapes focusing on reptiles and such. Hence, Rock Munchers feeding on the mineral-rich substances that are churned out by volcanic activity.

    As for the position, I would say its that little sliver of land around the eastern rim. Leaves a thought that perhapes the ancesters of the Dinos might have flown over the Rim, which means its not so much as a lost world as a new one that was found by the gigantic airborn reptiles first.
    Last edited by Pokonic; 2012-04-25 at 04:00 PM.
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    Interesting... You're almost entirely wrong But I find the manner in which you're incorrect very interesting.
    You're pretty close on Gensia. It's the three-pronged continent, and it's pretty much your typical pseudo-medieval Europe fantasy land - although with some Vikings, Middle East, northern Africa and Ancient Mediterranean thrown it.
    Handia is the double continent to Gensia's left. It's thematically based on the Americas (thus Inti and Kokopelli), and basically functions as my dumping ground for all the dumb and ridiculous humanoids. On that continent, humans are well in the minority, and Yakfolk live alongside Rakshasas and ratpeople.
    Inventia actually comes from some bad Latining, and more or less means "magic wasteland". Magic is sucked up from it, making it pretty deadly. I'll explain that more later. It's the continent sticking over the edge at the very top of the map (although I think it isn't actually that big).
    Tremoria is a double-pun on the Latin for "terror" and on "tremor" - as in what the ground does when dinosaurs go running past. It's sort of like Jurassic Park, and it's the land shaped like an X. It's basically an extremely powerful Druid's wildlife park.
    That sliver of land... It no longer exists in the recent updates of my world. If it ever did, I'd say it fell off a while ago.

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    Default Re: Cakeworld

    ......So that means I can still make Snake-Rhinos and magical dinosuars, right?
    Well, one time at Bard camp...
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    Sure, why not.

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    I would not enlarge the time scale too much. At the 10 000 years of pace, farmers could move hubwards every few generation, but farmhouses, even proper log ones, deteriorate anyway. Cities do have some problems in that geography, at least in coastal areas, is presumably changing swiftly enough that a century would alter the coastline completely, but that ought not be a setting-breaking problem, merely a challenge. Why not let the long-lived folk be more nomadic in mindset? Dragons might migrate with their hoards, making themselves large obvious targets to adventurers and rival dragons alike.

    Do you intend to have nine primordials, as you have now, or eight, as seemed your original statement and as is still written? Why include alignment nonsense at all if the greater deities are beyond that?

    I strongly advise a small selection of gods to having all gods from any book, ever. That would lead to a mess - cities would have temple districts that stretch on seemingly forever even if the gods, instead of having individual temples have small shrines and chapels within a greater unified complex instead. Too few options is constraining, yes. Too many, however, dilutes the whole setting. The same goes for creatures - there are so many various monsters in D&D that including a moon solely to have lycanthropes, unless lycanthrophy is a major theme, is needless. You do not need to make a 'main' campaign setting like Forgotten Realms where anything goes, or do you believe otherwise?

    It would further be interesting if the simple gods' similarities to the primordials, not any arbitrary divine ranks, determine how mighty they are - Kokopelli would clearly remain a greater god, a more 'complete' fragment of primordial chaos than most others.

    As for Asteleben, while I like the idea, how likely is it that a pre-renaissance civilisation would even have a concept for evolution, let alone on a world where any absurd crossbreed is possible?

    Before focusing on a sun-god and moon-goddess, I advise considering how the damn sun and moon(s) even work on such a world. Does the sun rise and set, effectively making this world an oddly-shaped planet? Is it a glowing magical orb somewhere out there which periodically lights up and dims to the point of complete darkness? You seem to be mixing nice and interesting ideas with old and rather stale ones.

    Violence, if kept with CE ought to see madness, paranoia, hate and cruelty encompassed within it.
    Last edited by Icedaemon; 2012-04-26 at 04:57 AM.
    Brewing a new setting (3.5 ed D&D). The setting is complete and ready to play.
    Indeed, here is the recruitment thread for the first run.
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