Page 1 of 6 123456 LastLast
Results 1 to 30 of 179
  1. - Top - End - #1
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Yora's Avatar

    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Germany

    Default Ancient Lands - Sword & Sorcery Campaign Setting

    Yes, it's me once again.
    As I've mentioned a few times ago, my method of working on my setting is a constant two steps forward, one step back. Trying some things out until it turns out that the setting doesn't work as I want, then peddling back and trying again with those things that did come out really well. And something things get so warped up and twisted that I can't untangle it anymore and I go back to a new clean blank map and a big box of all the elements I want to keep from my last attempts. And I think it's time for that again, this is actually more like the 5th or even 6th take on the world, but I have a feeling that this might turn out to be the final one. Or at least the one after this will be.




    Design Concept
    Mostly I play D&D 3rd Edition or Pathfinder because I know how these games work and all the others don't really seem to offer any major benefits to them. Depending on how 5th Edition is turning out, I might consider it as the game this setting will be based on when it's finished. Otherwise Pathfinder is a strong candidate, but I also plan to make the world more generic or original and not exactly a D&D world, and it should be easily adaptable to pretty much any game system.

    Sword & Sorcery
    Or call it heroic fantasy, if you must, but there is more than just the scope of things that is strongly influenced by that literary genre. The Ancient Lands is not a world about conflicts between cosmic powers or the politics between great kingdoms, but a setting for rather ordinary people who happen to get involved in some extraordinary things. There's no Dark Lord, no big invasions, or political conspiracies, just people dealing with the dangers of a wild and often hostile world and the threats posed by other people like them.
    The common role of the protagonists is to defend their villages and clans against the many dangers of the world that surround them and to discover magical artifacts and knowledge that bring greater power and prestige to their people and themselves. Warriors, hunters, shamans, lorekeepers, and healers are among the many on which the chiefs may call in times of need and danger.

    Bronze Age
    Or actually a kind of pseudo-Bronze Age. Unlike most generic fantasy settings, the Ancient Lands is neither a medieval nor a renaissance world, but set in a much earlier stage of civilization. The Stone Age lies well in the past and the use of steel is not something terribly uncommon, but mostly life for the people consists of independent and self-reliant villages that are often bound in loose alliances that shift as individual positions and situations are changing. Most weapons, armor, and farming equipment are made in the villages that use them and each community has to provide it's own food. There are some powerful warlords who have the loyalty of numerous villages surrounding their own home, but other than that there are no real kingdoms or empire that hold political power over large areas of land.

    Status and Allegiance
    In the Ancient Lands, the things you can or can't do depend just as much on your personal station as on the local laws. All have their duties to maintain the stability and safety of clan and village, and the good of the group often has to come before what one would rather chose to do instead. While a slave has none of the freedoms and previleges of a warrior, it does not mean that he will never have them. Status is not something defined by birth, but defined by ability and respect. A true warrior is not someone born to and raised by warriors, but someone who has the heart and the skill of a warrior, and those who desire to rise up in rank have to prove that they serve it.
    The rank and status of a person make a great difference for what things they can get away with and how they will be treated. A high ranking member of a chiefs family can not only demand but will be given hospitality in the homes of their peers. But at the same time, there are places where only slaves and peasants can go, and assistance that only they will recieve. Even more so than a characters race or clan, his rank and status have a major impact on where his adventures will take him and how he will fare in distant places and foreign lands.

    Points of Light
    This paradigm holds very well for the Ancient Lands. Most of the world is uninhabited and unexplored, and never has been before. While all villages, towns, and castles are connected with many of their neighbors for trade and to lend some assistance in times of trouble, there are few roads and it often takes days or weeks to get from one place to another, during which one is completely cut off from any form of civilization and entirely reliant on oneself and ones companions.

    Spirits and the Wilderness
    The Ancient Lands are an animistic world, in which everything holds some life force and as such as least a tiny trace of a spirit. Where the life force is strong and concentrated, rocks, trees, lakes, and the land itself become sentient and powerful beings that can be both kind and hostile to mortal creatures. Being in good standing with the spirits is something that is of great important to all humanoid people at any time. A helpful spirit of the land may grant a village rich harvest and a steady suply of water while keeping away plagues and dangerous beasts, while the wrath of a spirit can spell certain doom for everyone who draws their ire. As such, a major role in society falls to the shamans, wise men and women who can hear the will of the spirits and commune with them on behalve of their villages and clans. Without a shaman, no village can hope to endure and survive, but a wise and powerful one who is able to keep the spirits beneign is one of their greatest defenses against the dangers of the outside world and any evil that may come from within.

    An Ancient Past
    While the civilizations of mortal humanoids are still young, the world itself is an ancient one with a long history. When mortals still lived in caves or like beasts in the forests that cover the land, fey people build grand castles and palaces their like has never been seen again since. But eventually most of these citadels fell empty, their masters returning to a life with their kin in the Spiritwold. It was not long until the first brave elves and lizardfolk discovered and explored the abandoned ruins, now that there wasn't anyone left to guard them. From artifacts left behind in the halls and from encountering the mortal slaves the fey had discarded as well, knowledge of metal and farming reached the humanoid races and became the basis for their new civilizations.
    Even thousands of years later, many of these magical ruins lie still hidden deep in the forests and mountains, still undiscovered and unexplored. The value of objects and knowledge found within them can often be imeasurable and they often bring a lot of power to those who gain their possession.
    Last edited by Yora; 2013-02-15 at 06:07 AM.
    Spriggan's Den - Thoughts on RPGs and some of my personal creations.

    When you start dividing quotes into blocks to reply to each paragraph seperately, that's usually a strong sign that you're no longer contributing to the thread, but just arguing over who is right.

  2. - Top - End - #2

  3. - Top - End - #3
    Dwarf in the Playground
    Join Date
    Oct 2012

    Default Re: Ancient Lands - Take 3

    Love the first post - I might use the design concepts presentation thing for my own world.

    I especially like the Bronze Age and Points of Light and Status. Looks like you and me work with similar stuff.... only mine is Dark Ages instead of Bronze Age.

  4. - Top - End - #4
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Yora's Avatar

    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Germany

    Default Re: Ancient Lands - Take 3

    Work is coming along nicely and I feel quite positive about the reboot. I think I now have a baseline that is much more true to my original idea of having a setting that takes place at the beginning of the lost golden age of most generic fantasy worlds. The last version was turning more and more into a world of desert empires. While I still lake anything that would look like a map, the world pretty much falls into four tightly connected mini-settings. They run basically from north to south with an ocean in the east and unexplored wild lands to the west.

    One of the most central premisses of the setting is a huge expanse of wilderness that surrounds the small islands of settled lands. The main centers of civilization in the Ancient Lands are not cities but strongholds. Strongholds come in many forms but most of them are large fortresses or heavily fortified towns that also double as the home castles of the clan chiefs. Some strongholds can be exceptionally large towns that have gained great riches with trade, while others consist of nothing more than a single keep. However most of the people of a clan live in farming villages within a days travel from the main stronghold. Larger clans often have more than a single stronghold, which are then usually the garrisions of the chiefs most trusted senior warriors and their soldiers.

    The Northlands
    The Northlands are heavily inspired by Scandinavia and Canada, drawing lots of ideas from the northern lands of Middle Earth like Forochel, Angmar, and the Blue Mountains, and from Skyrim.
    At the center of the Northlands lies a large but not very high range of mountains that in many places is relatively flat and forms large moors and highlands. North and East of the mountains lies the sea while in the south are the Great Forests and in the west cold open plains, which are seperated from the Great Forests by a chain of hills starting in the southwest of the mountains and running into a southwest direction.
    The Northland are home to four different people of which none is clearly dominant. Near the northern coasts lives a tribe of tall humans with brown hair and fair skin that does not seem to be related to any of the other human people in the Ancient Lands and might have mixed with elves a very long time ago. They are mostly hunters and fishers, as there is not much farmland in their coastal farmlands. Throughout the mountains are many gnome strongholds, which lie mostly underground and are much bigger than they look from the outside. The gnomes mine and produce most of the iron and steel found anywhere in the Ancient Lands. On the southern slopes, there are also some wood elves who don't have much contact with the elves of the Great Forests. The Plains in the west and the hills on the border of the Great Forests are the homelands of the kaas, 7 feet tall humanoids with coarse light brown fur and dark brown manes, and faces that resemble lions, wolves and humans. Despite their appearance they are not evil peoples and explorers and mercenaries can be found throughout the Great Forests and as far south as the Plains.

    The Great Forest
    This is basically the core and centerpiece of the world, building on the High Forest from the Forgotten Realms, which is the original starting point for the entire Ancient Lands. It's a massive temperate forest that is also inspired by Mirkwood and the Anduin Valley from Middle Earth, the Eldeen Reaches from Eberron, and the planet Kashyyyk from Star Wars.
    The most numerous people of the Great Forests are wood elves. Gnomes can be found in many of the hills and clans of kaas can be found in the northwest and many human clans have settled the southwestern parts near the Plains in recent centuries.
    The Great Forests are home to many ruins of the shie, a race of fey people from the spiritworld who had created numerous citadels in the world of mortals thousands of years ago only to abandon all of them at a later point. Many of the elven strongholds and a few human villages are build on or inside the remains of such ancient ruins.

    The Plains
    The name is mostly a placeholder, but large warm grasslands are the centerpiece of this region. There are also a number of large warm and dry forests with a Southern European climate, which are obviously much smaller than two really big forests, but still considerably big. Inspirations come from Tethyr, the Chondalwood, and Shaar in the Forgotten Realms, and the Barrens and Azshara regions from Warcraft. Maybe a little bit from the Talentia Plains from Eberron, but I actually don't know almost anything about those.
    The Plains are where the northern and southern lands come together and they are home to dark elves and wild elves. The dark elves are pretty much based on the Dunmer of Morrowind from the Elder Scrolls games, with non of that spider stuff and fetish outfits. Instead they are a lot more like... well, Steppe Elves. The wild elves are the southern clans of the wood elves and more wild and primal. And I think somehow humans will have to fit in, as I intend to keep them as new arrivals from the West, and the plains would make an obvious primary route for their migration to the coast and into the Great Forests, and they would leave some cultural marks of their presence.
    Another new race is currently running under the name "Nezumi", though they are not actually ratfolk. Instead they are a race of 4 feet tall humanoids with sand colored shaggy fur, who have some similarity to ferrets and faces similar to desert dogs. They have more of a stone age culture with no widespread use of metal in weapons and armor, and they live in large villages in the thick forests at the edges of the plains. While they are from a primitive culture they are clever and fast and often seen as rather fearless or even reckless.

    The Southern Jungles
    The south consists of huge sub-tropic and tropical jungles similar to the Amazon and the Congo, and also the jungles of Indonesia and Thailand. Inspirations come from the jungles of Chult in the Forgotten Realms and Xen'drik from Eberron.
    Taking the idea from Eberron, the jungles are home to surface dark elves that are a bit more savage than most other elves but still belong to the three major races. They are found in the western parts that border the Plains.
    In the western parts are the lizardfolk dominant, with some remote corners still being under the control of naga lords who never abandoned their citadels in the thousands of years since most fey strongholds were abandoned. The lizardfolk draw not a lot of inspiration from the D&D creatures but are instead based mostly on the Jungle Trolls from Warcraft and the Turians from Mass Effect. The lizardfolk had their own civilizations long before the elves and anyone else, as they overthrew their naga masters in some of their citadels and took over, preserving a great deal of their knowledge on architecture, metalworking, agriculture, and even magic. While elven slaves were left behind by their fey masters centuries earlier, they had only access to whatever those slaves remembered from their own tasks and lacking many of the tools and resouces needed for their professions, so it took them much longer to catch up with the lizard peoples. Still, lizardfolk are generally not great thinkers and most of them outside the great strongholds live with pretty much the same comforts and using the same equipment as most dark elves and wild elves, and live in small villages of hunters in the jungles and on the coastal islands.
    Spriggan's Den - Thoughts on RPGs and some of my personal creations.

    When you start dividing quotes into blocks to reply to each paragraph seperately, that's usually a strong sign that you're no longer contributing to the thread, but just arguing over who is right.

  5. - Top - End - #5
    Pixie in the Playground
     
    RedWizardGuy

    Join Date
    Aug 2012

    Default Re: Ancient Lands - Take 3

    I always love your interesting setting ideas. You never go with anything generic. Love the idea of the "Ancient Past". Sort of what I was going for in my campaign.

  6. - Top - End - #6
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    ReaderAt2046's Avatar

    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Ancient Lands - Take 3

    I highly like this idea. Main question is how will magic work in this setting. I would suggest using one or both of two ideas:

    1. Very animistic/druidic magic. Not so much calling lightning or moving mountains as asking the lightning nicely to strike there rather than here. Also much more emphasis on buffs and empathy.

    2. Extremely volatile and haphazard arcane magic. The rare few who have access to arcane spells generally are either sorcerors who have no clue how to direct the magic flowing through them or wizards who have discovered arcane scrolls in some of the fey ruins and thus have a haphazard assembly of spells they don't fully understand. Expect a lot of spells misfiring or going off spontaneously.

  7. - Top - End - #7
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Flumph

    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Santa Barbara, CA
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Ancient Lands - Take 3

    Okay I've read the last two of these things and have a question for you Yora.
    What exactly are you doing here? These things seem to start with a Campaign Setting but grow and gross until you need totally new mechanics and gameplay.
    I think you may want to pick a game mechanic set and then set some limmits on how far you are willing to stretch things. Adding a class/station mechanic seems easy enough. Eberron added action points, Ravenloft had its Dark Powers checks. But really how much farther do you want to go? Playable and done is bette than unfinished, hyper complex, and near perfect.
    Good Luck

  8. - Top - End - #8
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Yora's Avatar

    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Germany

    Default Re: Ancient Lands - Take 3

    I'm working on the world first and worry about adapting specific game systems to it later. Though I don't think there's actually that much that would need adapting. Character races, equipment lists, and some new monsters should be covering almost everything. The only really setting unique things that come to my mind are mechanics for demonic corruption and a kind of blood magic, which I havn't really developed yet.

    Magic and Spellcasters

    In the world of the Ancient Lands, there is only a single supernatural force at work. Life force, magic, spirits, demons, souls; it's all the same basic energy that is found inside and between everything. This energy is what gives living creatures their strength and make them grow and heal injuries and disease. It is also what creates the souls of mortal creatures and in places where the energies of the landscape are strong, they manifest in sentient spirits of imense power.
    The arts of magic are the mastery of the ability to not just call on the life energy within oneself, but to extend ones mental control to the energies around one and even inside other objects and beings. When casting a spell, a spellcaster is sending a ripple through the energies surrounding him to manipulate the energies within creatures and objects to their desire, just as normal people control the energies within their arms and legs. Magic spells can make plants grow or move, split or shove away rocks, create lightning and set things on fire, and even take control of other creatures thoughts. To be able to manipulate the life force and magical energies at a distance, a spellcaster needs to build up a reserve of energy separate from their own life force, which they accomplish by many years of training and meditation. Once this reserve is spend, they can no longer cast any spells until the energies are restored. People who have mastered magic, and creatures that are naturally magical, require almost no effort to regain their spend magical energy. Their energy reserve has become a natural part of their own being and during rest energies from the surrounding environment automatically move in to fill the void and restore the natural balance of energies, like water after a bucket has been filled from a lake. Compared to the amounts of energy in the natural world, even the most powerful spellcasters can store only such a small amount that there is no noticable drain of life force in the creatures and plants arround them.

    Blood Magic
    In the earliest days of the humanid peoples the magical abilities of spirits and other magical creatures was not yet entirely understood and the earliest spellcasters did not yet have the ability to create reserves of magical energies to power their spells. But they realized that magical energy and life force is essentially the same and in no other part of a mortal creature is its life force as strong and concentrated as in the blood. Not only could these early spellcasters use the energy in their own blood to cast their spells, they could also use the life force of other living creatures.
    When the more common forms of magic, or spirit magic, were discovered, this blood magic was soon abandoned. The storing of magical energies from the environment is not only much more effective, but also much less painful and gruesome. However, unlike many shamans and wizards would like to believe, the traditions of blood mages never entirely disappeared and continued to exist in some small remote places for all the thousands of years. Pure, traditional blood mages are almost unheard of in the present age. The advantages of using the magical energies of the surrounding natural world are just too great for any spellcasters to ignore. But there are still some advantages that blood magic has over spirit magic, which allowed the ancient traditions to survive. By drawing the life force from their own blood, blood mages can significally extend their reserves of magical energy and even make their spells stronger and more powerful than they would usually be able to. And by using the life force of other living creatures, blood mages can have access to vast amounts of magical energy for prolonged rituals and large scale magical effects, that would take ordinary spellcasters days or weeks and the use of rare and highly expensive substances to store for later use. Because of the violent and gruesome nature of blood magic, most people regard it as savage and horrific, but contrary to common believes, blood magic itself does not have a corrupting effect on those who use it or are affected by it.

    Demonic Energy and Corruption
    Outside the natural world that consists of the material world and the Spiritworld exists a realm of infinite time and space that is simply called the Void. Just as there are spirits in the natural energies of the spiritworld there are also beings born from concentrations of the energies of the Void, called demons. When spellcasters learns a way to create a connection to the Void, it allows them to draw some of its energies to their own world and use it as an additional source of magical power in addition to their own. With these energies they can create spells that can not be cast with magical energies of the natural world and it also greatly increases the number of spells they can cast before their reserves are exhausted.
    However, the natural world and the Void are realms of completely different laws that are conflicting with each other and bringing energies from the Void into the natural world causes it to become warped and twisted, an effect known as corruption. The demonic energies are toxic to any living things that are affected by it. Spellcasters who have mastered their use can learn to resist its effects and may show only very little signs of the massive exposure they recieve from many years of casting demonic spells. However the land around their homes and lairs becomes significantly affected, making these places hostile to all living things, turning them weak and sick and eventually killing them.
    But corruption is not simply a drain of life force, but a warping and twisting of it, and corrupted life force is still able to support life, at least in a manner of speaking. When creatures becomes entirely corrupted but do not simply fall dead, they turn into the undead. Zombies and skeletons are corpses that have become powered by corrupted energy after their death, while those who have never really died become ghouls or wights. In rare cases, a person dies but the corrupted energies that have been part of him continues to exist as a faint afterimage of a creature known as a shadow. When the corruption has been so complete that the soul itself has become corrupted, it continues to exist even after the body has died as a wraith.
    Spriggan's Den - Thoughts on RPGs and some of my personal creations.

    When you start dividing quotes into blocks to reply to each paragraph seperately, that's usually a strong sign that you're no longer contributing to the thread, but just arguing over who is right.

  9. - Top - End - #9
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    ReaderAt2046's Avatar

    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Ancient Lands - Take 3

    Quote Originally Posted by Yora View Post
    I'm working on the world first and worry about adapting specific game systems to it later. Though I don't think there's actually that much that would need adapting. Character races, equipment lists, and some new monsters should be covering almost everything. The only really setting unique things that come to my mind are mechanics for demonic corruption and a kind of blood magic, which I havn't really developed yet.

    Magic and Spellcasters

    In the world of the Ancient Lands, there is only a single supernatural force at work. Life force, magic, spirits, demons, souls; it's all the same basic energy that is found inside and between everything. This energy is what gives living creatures their strength and make them grow and heal injuries and disease. It is also what creates the souls of mortal creatures and in places where the energies of the landscape are strong, they manifest in sentient spirits of imense power.
    The arts of magic are the mastery of the ability to not just call on the life energy within oneself, but to extend ones mental control to the energies around one and even inside other objects and beings. When casting a spell, a spellcaster is sending a ripple through the energies surrounding him to manipulate the energies within creatures and objects to their desire, just as normal people control the energies within their arms and legs. Magic spells can make plants grow or move, split or shove away rocks, create lightning and set things on fire, and even take control of other creatures thoughts. To be able to manipulate the life force and magical energies at a distance, a spellcaster needs to build up a reserve of energy separate from their own life force, which they accomplish by many years of training and meditation. Once this reserve is spend, they can no longer cast any spells until the energies are restored. People who have mastered magic, and creatures that are naturally magical, require almost no effort to regain their spend magical energy. Their energy reserve has become a natural part of their own being and during rest energies from the surrounding environment automatically move in to fill the void and restore the natural balance of energies, like water after a bucket has been filled from a lake. Compared to the amounts of energy in the natural world, even the most powerful spellcasters can store only such a small amount that there is no noticable drain of life force in the creatures and plants arround them.
    I REALLY like this theory. Is there any way I can upvote it or otherwise officially approve it?

  10. - Top - End - #10
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Flumph

    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Santa Barbara, CA
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Ancient Lands - Take 3

    Quote Originally Posted by Yora View Post
    I'm working on the world first and worry about adapting specific game systems to it later. Though I don't think there's actually that much that would need adapting. Character races, equipment lists, and some new monsters should be covering almost everything. The only really setting unique things that come to my mind are mechanics for demonic corruption and a kind of blood magic, which I havn't really developed yet.
    Um really I'd warn you on this. I thought the same thing at the beginning of the other two threads but you have a way of making things grow. If something is not quite right you seem to have put it in a "homebrew that" box that eventually threatens the project with its size, complexity, etc. Its not that you have to work the mechanics out now but by having a framework in mind you don't want to create something that later becomes very difficult to deliver on when the time for mechanics rolls around. If you want to have multiple game systems adapted to this world (Like Iron Kingdoms for example) that's fine but I still think you be getting an outline now.

  11. - Top - End - #11
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Yora's Avatar

    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Germany

    Default Re: Ancient Lands - Sword & Sorcery Campaign Setting, Take 3

    Weapons and Armor


    Textile Armor
    The most basic and common type of armor in the Ancient Lands is textile armor, which is made from several tightly packed and glued together layers of cloth that become stronger and tougher than leather. Simple armor of this type consists of a breastplate and armored skirt, but it can also include shoulder guards and protection for the arms and legs. Better made and more expensive suits of textile armor are often covered in an outer layer of leather that keeps water from getting inside the fabric.
    Textile armor is used almost everywhere in the Ancient Lands except for the steaming jungles of the south where the hot and humid climate takes its toll on the glues and greatly increases the chance of rot and molds.
    Spoiler
    Show
    d20/3.5e/PF stats: 100 sp; Light; AC +2; max. Dex +6; armor penalty -0; spell failure 10%; 15 lb.
    D&D 5th Ed. stats: 100 sp; Light; AC 12; max. Dex +4; 15 lb.


    Hide Armor
    While most leather is not durable enough to withstand spears and arrows, some rare beasts have hide that is strong enough to make efficient armor. Found mostly in southern lands, hide armor is often made from crocodile skin, wyvern hide, or the carapaces of giant beetles.
    Spoiler
    Show
    d20/3.5e/PF stats: 150 sp; Medium; AC +3; max. Dex +4; armor penalty -3; spell failure 20%; 25 lb.
    D&D 5th Ed. stats: 150 sp; Medium; AC 13; max. Dex +2; 20 lb.


    Scale Armor
    Scale armor is the most common form of metal armor and also the most simple to make. Scale armor is made by sewing numerous small metal plates on a backing of leather in an overlapping pattern and because each of these scales is very small and not subject to a lot of stress, they can be made from relatively low quality iron that can be found almost anywhere. Scale armor made from bronze is also not uncommon and works just the same, but is generally more expensive. Most suits of scale armor cover at least the chest but may also protect the shoulders or include a scale skirt that protects the upper legs.
    Spoiler
    Show
    d20/3.5e/PF stats: 500 sp; Medium; AC +4; max. Dex +3; armor penalty -4; spell failure 25%; 30 lb.
    D&D 5th Ed. stats: 500 sp; Medium; AC 14; max. Dex +2; 30 lb.


    Chainmail
    Chainmail is made from thousands of small metal links that are connected together to form a flexible yet very strong fabric that is practically impossible to cut through. Below the chainmal comes a layer of padding that not only makes the armor less uncomfortable to wear, but more importantly reduces the impact of clubs, spear thrusts, and axe blows, that can still break bones even without piercing the chainmail itself. While narrow tipped arrows can quite easily pierce chainmail by breaking just one or two links, the padding works remarkably well in keeping the arrows from penetrating deeply and causing serious injuries. Lighter chainmal armors cover only the torso and have short sleves that end just below the shoulders, while heavier and more expensive ones also have half- or full-length sleves and a slit skirt that protects the legs.
    Since the metal links are relatively delicate they need to be made of quality steel that is made by gnomes and some elves and kaas clans in the north.
    Spoiler
    Show
    Chain shirt
    d20/3.5e/PF stats: 1,000 sp; Light; AC +4; max. Dex +4; armor penalty -2; spell failure 20%; 25 lb.
    D&D 5th Ed. stats: 1,000 sp; Light; AC 13; max. Dex +4; 20 lb.

    Chainmail armor
    d20/3.5e/PF stats: 1,500 sp; Medium; AC +5; max. Dex +2; armor penalty -5; spell failure 30%; 40 lb.
    D&D 5th Ed. stats: 1,500 sp; Heavy; AC 16, max. Dex +0; speed -5 ft.; Stealth disadvantage; 40 lb.


    Lamellar
    Lamellar armor is very similar to scale armor but more advanced and sophisticated. In lamellar armor, each metal scale is not just sewn to the leather backing, but instead tightly laced together with all the other scales next to it. This makes the whole armor a lot stiffer and stronger and allows to effectivly make rather large sheets of metal from smaller individual plates.
    A simple suit of lamelar armor consists of only a breastplate while the rest of the body is protected by either textile or hide armor. A full suit of lamellar armor also includes shoulder guards, protection for the upper arms, and slit skirts to cover the upper legs. Lamellar armor is almost always made by gnomes, but they often make them to be sold to elves and kaas, while some of the most advanced lizardfolk clans also have developed their own techniques.
    Spoiler
    Show
    Lamellar breastplate
    d20/3.5e/PF stats: 2,000 sp; Medium; AC +5; max. Dex +3; armor penalty -4; spell failure 25%; 30 lb.
    D&D 5th Ed. stats: 2,000 sp; Medium; AC 15; max. Dex +2; 30 lb.

    Lamellar armor
    d20/3.5e/PF stats: 3,000 sp; Heavy; AC +6; max. Dex +1; armor penalty -6; spell failure 35%; 40 lb.
    D&D 5th Ed. stats: 3,000 sp; Heavy; AC 17, max. Dex +0; speed -5 ft.; Stealth disadvantage; 40 lb.


    Shields
    Shields are easy to make and also very cheap, while at the same time providing a significant amount of protection, which makes them by far the most common and widely used type of armor. Most shields are made from wood and covered in hide or leather to increase their durability and keep them from splintering.
    Almost every warrior who does not fight with a bow or a glaive carries a shield into battle, and even those often prefer to have a light shield at hand if they have to fall back to their axes and swords.
    Spoiler
    Show
    Light Shield
    d20/3.5e/PF stats: 30 sp; AC +2; armor penalty -1; spell failure 5%; 5 lb.
    D&D 5th Ed. stats: 30 sp; AC +2; 5 lb.

    Heavy Shield
    d20/3.5e/PF stats: 70 sp; AC +3; armor penalty -2; spell failure 15%; 10 lb.
    D&D 5th Ed. stats: 70 sp; AC +3, 10 lb.



    Daggers
    Daggers and knives are by far the most common type of weapon and almost every person has at least one. In addition to being a weapon that can be easily carried around all day, they are also tools with countless possible uses and in most places are considered part of everyday dress rather than weapons of war.
    Spoiler
    Show
    Dagger: 1d4 piercing, 20 sp
    Kukri: 1d4 slashing, 80 sp


    Spears
    The weapon used by most warriors of all the races is the spear. It's very easy to make and requires only a small amount of metal to make a powerful weapon that can kill almost any beast and pierce most types of armor with a strong thrust. Less common are glaives, which have a longer blade designed for slashing rather than thrusting, and halberds that are similar to long hafted two-handed axes with a spike for thrusting at the end.
    Spoiler
    Show
    Shortspear: 1d6 piercing, one handed, 10 sp
    Spear: 1d8 piercing, two-handed, 20 sp
    Glaive: 1d10 slashing, two-handed, 80 sp
    Halberd: 1d10 slashing, two-handed, 100 sp
    Javelin: 1d6 piercing, ranged, 5 sp


    Bows
    In addition to javelins, the most important ranged weapon is the bow. Bows come in all shapes and sizes but most hunters, scouts, and mounted archers stick to more averaged sized ones while the more powerful longbows are almost always found in the hands of elite archers of high rank.
    Spoiler
    Show
    Short Bow: 1d6 piercing, ranged, 100 sp
    Longbow: 1d8 piercing, ranged, 150 sp


    Clubs
    Clubs are carried as secondary weapons by many warriors of lower rank who can not afford axes or even swords as secondary weapons to their spears. While essentially just heavy pieces of wood, they still have no problem with breaking bones and killing fully grown warriors. Maces are more expensive variants that have added heads of heavy iron bands near the end that makes them even more devastating. Large two-handed version of the mace called greatclubs are somewhat slow and quite heavy, but often found in the hands of strong and powerful warriors who use them to fell even the best amored foes.
    Spoiler
    Show
    Club: 1d6 bludgeoning; 1 sp
    Mace: 1d8 bludgeoning, 50 sp
    Greatclub: 1d10 bludgeoning, two-handed, 80 sp
    Staff: 1d6 bludgeoning, two-handed, 2 sp


    Axes
    Handaxes are often carried by warriors as backup weapons and are not much different from the common woodworking tool and they are often used for either purpose interchangeably. Battleaxes have much longer cutting edges but are significantly thinner than logging axes, which makes them more effective in cutting through armor and penetrating deep into their foes bodies. Some kaas wariors use larger two-handed versions of the battleaxe that are probably the most powerful weapon used anywhere in the Ancient Lands, but they require great strength and leave the weilder wide open to attacks. They are rarely used in individual combat but mostly in larger battles in the hands of shock troops that have other warriors to watch their backs.
    Spoiler
    Show
    Handaxe: 1d4 slashing, 40 sp
    Battleaxe: 1d8 slashing, 80 sp
    Greataxe: 1d12 slashing, two-handed, 120 sp


    Swords
    Swords are relatively rare and become even more so the larger they get. Because of the limitations of bronze and the types of steel used in the Ancient Lands, the length of swords is relatively limited, but there is not much difference between individual swords made of either material. By far the most common types of swords are short swords, which are shorter than a mans arm in total length. They are similar to very large daggers and often used as backup weapons as their range is significantly shorter than that of spears carried by most warriors. More expensive and as such more rare swords are longswords and scimitars. They are of similar size but can be either straight and with two edges, or curved and with a single edge. Either of the two types is mostly used by elves. In the south, many lizardfolk warriors of high rank also carry falcatas, very heavy iron swords that resemble single edged cleavers with the thickest point of the blade near the tip, which allows for very powerful chops like an axe. As they make very effective weapons to penetrate armor, they have also found their way into the hands of dark elves and humans that live close to the lizardfolk jungles.
    Spoiler
    Show
    Short Sword: 1d6 slashing, 100 sp
    Scimitar: 1d6 slashing, 150 sp
    Longsword: 1d8 slashing, 200 sp
    Falcata: 1d8 slashing, 200 sp


    Ranged Weapons
    Other weapons that are found in many places of the Ancient Lands are the boomerang, dart, and sling. Boomerangs are used mostly by dark elves who use them to stun enemies and prey from significant distances with a heavy blow. While they rarely kill anything but the smallest animals, they are very useful to weaken or slow a target before engaging into combat. Elves in the north use darts for similar purposes. Smaller ones consists of metal tipped wooden needles to deliver poisons, while larger ones take the form of heavy iron spikes thrown at the enemy as a distraction before attacking them with another weapon or getting a chance to escape. Slings may not look like much but are actually rather difficult to master and can cause tremendous damaged in the hands of a skilled slinger. Stones hurld by slings can punch through lighter armor and even penetrate deeply into the bodies of unarmored foes.
    Spoiler
    Show
    Boomerang: 1d4 bludgeoning, ranged 5 sp
    Dart: 1d3 piercing, ranged, 5 cp
    Sling: 1d6 bludgeoning, ranged, 5 sp


    Quote Originally Posted by sktarq View Post
    Its not that you have to work the mechanics out now but by having a framework in mind you don't want to create something that later becomes very difficult to deliver on when the time for mechanics rolls around.
    I still don't see the problem. There's nothing particularly strange or unusual about the components that make the world and how it works.
    Last edited by Yora; 2012-10-17 at 07:21 AM.
    Spriggan's Den - Thoughts on RPGs and some of my personal creations.

    When you start dividing quotes into blocks to reply to each paragraph seperately, that's usually a strong sign that you're no longer contributing to the thread, but just arguing over who is right.

  12. - Top - End - #12
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Yora's Avatar

    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Germany

    Default Re: Ancient Lands - Sword & Sorcery Campaign Setting, Take 3

    Deities, Demigods, and Religion

    The Ancient Lands are an animistic world. Everything is filled with life energy and therefore has a spirit. The spirit of a stone or an apple is so minor that it doesn't have any sentience or individuality but the spirits of mountains and ancient trees can become, and often are, very powerful beings. Often these spirits can take the shape of nymphs or plant beasts to interact with the physical world and the most powerful of them are called demigods. Most religious practice and worship is focused on these spirits of the land and demigods who provide the people who live in their domains with plentiful harvest and protect them from wild beasts and disasters. In the Ancient Lands it is impossible to maintain any settlement without the protection or at least the consent of the local spirits. Services to the spirits and demigods is a very practical thing that consists of showing gratitude and consulting the spirits will before important decisions that affect the village. While the spirits are highly revered, the relationship to them is usually not very different to that of a mortal lord. There are hundreds of demigods in the Ancient Lands and the number of other powerful spirits of the land is beyond counting.
    However, there are even spirits more powerful than the demigods, which are the greater deities or true gods. They are spirits of such magnitude that their power and influence is not limited to any specific area but affects the entire world equally. While it is possible to visit the homes of the demigods and even come face to face with their physical manifestations in the spiritworld, the true gods are far above such limitations. Gods do not reside anywhere and are so high above the nature of mortal beings that they do not have any shape or it would be possible for mortals to communicate with them. Worship of the true gods is very different from services to the demigods and spirits, as they neither reply to the pleas of individual people nor grant any gifts or favors. Temples to the gods are much more rare than shrines to the spirits and they have more resemblance to spiritual and philosophical schools or monasteries. Worship of the gods is more similar to pursuing wisdom and meditation and mostly lacks the prayers and offerings found in the shrines of the spirits. While most people visit the shrines regularly to show gratitude to the local spirits, temples are not found in most settlements and perform public services only on certain sacred days of the year. But the gods are well known to most people and it is the common believe that by concentrating ones mind and emotion on the gods allows a person to take part in their divine nature. Reciting short prayers or invoking the deities names before a challenging task or during times of danger is believed to give a boost to ones own abilities and shift the odds in ones favor. By calling on the deity of the seas, sailors hope to avoid storms, reefs, and sea monsters, or one might call on the deity of healing to aid the recovery of someone in ones care, as focusing on the nature of the seas or the nature of healing focuses ones own soul to excel in these areas.

    Major Gods
    The major gods are the most fundamental forces of nature and the world and known and revered by almost all people all over the world even beyond the borders of the Ancient Lands. The vast majority of temples are dedicated to them.

    • Deity of the Earth: The deity of the earth is widely regarded as ancient and one of the first beings that existed in the world. She is the deity if growth, mountains, and caves as well as the deity of the home and the family, which makes her one of the most important deity in almost all regions of the Ancient Lands. Many druids are both shamans for the local spirits as well as priests of the Earth Deity in a single role.
    • Deity of the Sea: The deity of the sea is also the deity of water in general, but people living next to rivers and lakes often focus much more on their individual spirits rather than the deity itself. In coastal and island villages, the deity of the sea often is the most important deity and it is very common that the local shrine to the spirits is also a temple to the deity of the sea, who is worshiped in similar ways as the spirits of the land. The deity of the sea is of major importance to everyone whose life depends on the oceans like sailors and fishermen, who call on him to prevent disasters and see them safely reach their destinations without taking them to his depths.
    • Deity of the Moon: The deity of the moon is the goddess of wisdom, dreams, emotions, and time, and also often regarded as a deity of the night. Temples of the moon are the most monastic ones with priests rarely taking major roles in public affairs, but most are open to laymen for meditation ceremonies after sunset. Priests of the moon also often guidance and tend for the needs of those in great trouble and despair. Most temples of the moon are found in the lands of wood elves, but there are also some among the dark elves and the moon is a major deities with the seminomadic humans of the far north.
    • Deity of the Sun: The deity of fire is usually represented in the image of the sun, but its domain encompasses fire in all its forms. Fire is usually associated with vitality and determination and priests of the sun usually take great care about physical health and promote training of the body beyond the activities of ones everyday work. Temples of the Sun are relatively rare in the Ancient Lands, but it is the main deity of the lizardfolk in the southern jungles, who attribute their freedom from the slavery by the naga to the strength and determination the Sun had provided for them. A few smaller temples are found in some dark elven towns, but worship of the sun is relatively rare in the northern lands.
    • Spirits of the Sky: The deity of the sky is not a single being but rather the combined essence of all the spirits of the air, wind, and storms. As they are constantly in motion and struggling among each other, there are almost no individual spirits to make out and instead they always speak in hundreds or even thousands of voices at the same time, that combine into a single voice that is different from each individual one. The spirits of the sky are the gods of weather, change, and fate. They do not determine what any given persons fate will be, but rather personify the randomness of things. They are both the gods of luck and misfortune and prayers to the sky usually consist of both warding off bad luck and providing fortune to a person. They are also the gods of travel and of storms, as well as rain, so they are very often called upon, but have very few temples or priests dedicated to them. What small groups of priests of the skies exist are usually treated as somewhat odd people who are regarded more similar to witches living at the edge of the village instead of shamans who usually take a very central role in the community.
    • Deity of Darkness: While the deity of darkness is not evil, she rarely has any place in public life and usually is not mentioned in reputable company. She is the deity of the night, secrecy and fear, but also a deity of sleep and even protection. While all the creatures of the night fall into her domain, she is also the protector of sleeping people and a provider of rest and peace. In addition to being called upon by those who need to hide or evade notice, there are also many prayers and charms that ask for peace and safety during the night and to ward of any nightmares or evil spirits that prey on the sleeping. These prayers are often handed down within the family and far away from any other listeners, but the number of people who know them is much greater than most would expect as the deity of darkness is surrounded by a large number of social and ritual taboos that make it highly impolite and dangerous to talk about her in public.


    Minor Gods
    The minor gods are mostly identical in nature to the major gods, but they represents aspects of the world that are not as universal and they are not known and worshiped in all places. While there are probably dozens of minor gods, only a relatively small number has worshipers in the Ancient Lands.

    • The Deity of Forests: While the deity of the earth is the goddess of growth and plants in general, the deity of forests is focused more specifically on the great woodlands of the Ancient Lands and their creatures. He is worshiped mostly by those who make their living in the forests like hunters and loggers, who hope to avoid falling victim to the many dangers of the forests and increasing their chances to find the best places for hunting and cutting lumber. Temples of the forest god are rare and usually take the form of small communities of hermits living deep in the forest far removed from all civilization.
    • The Deity of the Hunt: The deity of the hunt is also the deity of tracking and travel. She is worshiped not only by hunters, but also by many scouts and traveling merchants, and many consider her to be a goddess of horseriding as well. While being a minor goddess, she is quite popular and altars dedicated to her can be found on roadsides at the edges of many villages where travelers prey for a safe journey and give thanks when they reached their destination. Temples to the deity of the hunt are very rare and are only found in a few towns that have a long history of hunting rare animals for trade. She is most commonly worshiped by wood elves but also has strong support among many dark elven clans, and she also is one of the deities traditionally worshiped by the human clans that have migrated into the Ancient Lands in the last centuries.
    • The Deity of Peace and Healing: While she does have few major temples, small communes of her priests that consists of only two to five people are quite common in many villages and small altars dedicated to her are found in the homes of most healers. Though some of her priests are actual druids dedicated to the healing arts, most are simple herbalists or alchemists who lack any real magic ability.
    • The Deity of Snakes: The snake god is a relatively obscure deity but has significant followers among the naga and the lizardfolk that still live under their rule. The snake god is a deity of snakes, poison, and deception, but also of courage and pride. He is sometimes worshiped by dark elves as well as a few clans of wood elves that live in the south.
    • The Deity of Beasts: The Deity of Beasts is the god of wild animals, monsters, destruction, and carnage. Very few people see any good reasons to call upon his power, but he is popular with several clans of savage warriors, mostly lizardfolk and kaas. Among the other races, he is mostly regarded as evil.
    • The Deity of Twilight: The deity of twilight is an enigmatic goddess that even her followers find hard to pin down. She is a goddess of dusk and dawn, as well as mist, illusions, deceptions, and uncertainty. There are only a few cults devoted to her and their goals are a mystery to everyone, but her name is frequently invoked by many people who find themselves in situations of doubt or high risk, hoping to gain her power to see through the mists of uncertainty and make the right decisions and judgments. She is actually one of the Ancients, the oldest of deities that are usually associated with the underworld and its horrors. But being what she is, she can not be really put in either category and as such is often included with the other deities of the spiritworld.


    The Ancients
    The Ancients are beings of the underworld, a part of the Spiritworld that seems to have been isolated from the passing of time and still resembles a world as it has been many eons ago. The most powerful of the Ancients go back to the earliest days of the world and the beginning of time, being neither fully spirit nor fully demonic. As the world above changed, so did it's spirit and the spiritworld. But deep within the earth things change much slower if they actually ever change at all, and the Underworld is still home to horrors completely alien to the world of the present and so are it's gods.
    While many people naturally associate the deities of Darkness and Twilight with the Ancients, only very few are really aware that the same thing is true of the deity of the earth. Some sages believe that the deity of the earth and the deity of darkness were the first spirits that were born when the world formed from the chaos of the eternal Void and they only changed gradually over time to conform to the world of the present, but never were replaced by new spirits and deities as the world changed from its primordial state.
    While considered horrible monsters by most people, even the Ancients do have some worshipers. These cultists are usually regarded as dangerous madmen, and many of them are; but quite often there is much more to them than that and they consider their work just as sacred and important as that of the other temples. To most people the Ancients and their gods are the subject of whispered rumors. While the existence of the Ancients deep in the Underworld is well known, very few people have any desire to learn anything more about them and it takes the aid of sages who are well learned in very unusual matters to get any accurate information on what things are actually lurking in the deeps of the Underworld.

    • The Defiler: Aside from the Deity of Twilight, which has some acceptance among most humanoid people, the best known of the Ancients is the Defiler. The defiler is usually described as the most repulsive and frightening being that ever existed and it is the manifestation of the alieness of the Underworld itself. What stories does exist of this abomination often describe it as a writhing mass of black and purple that haunts the caves and tunnels of the Underworld in countless places at once and it lacks any defined size or mass. Cultists of the defiler are usually regarded as the most deranged and abhorrent ones as few can ever get even a glimpse of what their motivations might be.
    • The Mother of Beasts: While the deities of Earth, Forests, and Healing as well as the deity of beasts are usually considered to be the gods of animals, plants, and other creatures, the Mother of Beasts represents the greatest inevitability of life, that life itself is inevitable. There is no space as barren and inhospitable that life would not eventually find it's way there. There may be no life inside a rock, but eventually the rock will split and crumble and it is only a matter of time before lichen and fungi are making their approach. Life can be destroyed and it can be held back, but it can never be stopped and will find its way even in the most hostile places. Cults of the mother of beasts are the ones that are the most likely to not be hunted to extinction and in some cases are allowed to persist on the edges of larger villages. In the Underworld, the mother of beasts is often worshiped by driders.
    • The Keeper of Secrets: The keeper of secrets is said to be at home at the deepest bottoms of the sea where the world is still in its primordial state, as it is in the deepest reaches of the earth. The keeper has existed for a very long time and might have even been around in the earliest days of creations. He has stayed hidden in the deeps through all the eons. noticing the passing of time and the events that shaped the world. It is believed that the keeper knows the answer to any question that can be answered and since the earliest days of civilizations there have been persistent rumors of almost forgotten rituals that can bring forth a manifestation of the keeper that can answer any question imaginable. However, the knowledge will always come with a price that is so terrible that no story tells of it. While there are a few mad cults in coastal villages that attempt to recover the instructions for these ancient rites, most of the keepers followers are aboleths.
    • The Lady of Madness: The Lady of Madness is the manifestation of insanity and fear. She is said to wander the Underworld in a shape resembling a humanoid form and completely destroying the minds of anyone who sees but a glimpse of the ghostly white light emanating from it, or a small part of her shadow. In many ways, she is even more unfathomable than the Defiler and her only people with any interest in her are the Derro, who are far to mad and violent to ever provide any useful information of what she is and what her purposes are.
    Last edited by Yora; 2012-10-24 at 12:26 PM.
    Spriggan's Den - Thoughts on RPGs and some of my personal creations.

    When you start dividing quotes into blocks to reply to each paragraph seperately, that's usually a strong sign that you're no longer contributing to the thread, but just arguing over who is right.

  13. - Top - End - #13
    Dwarf in the Playground
    Join Date
    Oct 2012

    Default Re: Ancient Lands - Sword & Sorcery Campaign Setting, Take 3

    Love the post on armor and weapons. The deities are nice.

  14. - Top - End - #14
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Yora's Avatar

    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Germany

    Default Re: Ancient Lands - Sword & Sorcery Campaign Setting, Take 3

    Background Traits (D&D 5th Ed.)

    Social rank is an important defining feature of characters in the Ancient Lands. I tried a couple of things with the Backgrounds in the current D&D Playtest rules (10/29/12) and selecting four skills for each social ranks turned out to be too restricting and creating a background for every possible upbringing and profession would get far too cluttered.
    Instead, I think I will go with only a Background Trait and a couple of suggested skills that would be appropriate for a character of that background, but not neccessary. A person of the Highborn class would be likely to have the Persuasion and Knowledge (Heraldry) skills, but if this specific character also has the Knowledge (Warfare) and Ride skills, or rather Profession (Scribe) and knowledge (History) is left entirely to the player. Background Skills are a a suggestion anyway and players who want to get through this stepp quick are already presented with a selection of five or six skills, from which they can chose four and leave it at that.

    Since social rank is somewhat fluid, characters can change their Background Trait at a later point, but even if Skills were selected from the suggested Background Skills, these don't change.

    Highborn
    Highborn is the highest social class in the Ancient Lands. It includes the chiefs of the clans, their sub-chiefs, and their immediate families. They are the people with power and who grew up in previleged families. Rising up to the highborn class is usually achieved only by marriage into a highborn family, or when a member of a clansmen family is raised into the inner circle of the chieftains most trusted warriors.
    Highborn Station (based on the Knights Station Background Trait): As a member of the highborn class, you can expect to recieve accomodations and food for yourself and your companions by the leader of any community you are passing through. This previlege is denied only to enemies of the clan, but even those might be granted hospitality if they are on their way to negotiations with the local chief or king. Most clan leaders make sure that all of their subjects also treat visiting highborn with the respect appropriate to their station. As members of the ruling families, the actions of a highborn have a very high effect on the clans reputation so abusing this previlege might lead to repercussions by your chief, which could include paying for gifts send to the other clan as signs of gratitude for their hospitality.
    Suggested Skills: Intimidate, Knowledge (Heraldry, History, Warfare), Profession (cook, herbalist, scribe, tailor, woodcarver), Persuade, Ride, Sense Motive.

    Clansman
    The Clansmen are the old and powerful families of a clan that often make up between one third and one half of the clans members. The clansmen families make up the vast majority of a clans warriors and landowners and the leaders of each family has a say in the politics of the village or stronghold. To rise into the clansmen class, individuals have to either marry into a clansmen family or be adopted into it by the leaders of the family. Sometimes warriors who have proven their worth and have performed a great service to the clan are adopted by the chief and either become part of his family or a given a small home in the clans lands.
    Clan Loyalty (based on the Salt of the Earth Background Trait): Loyalty towards the members of ones own clan is not based on personal relationships or if one even likes one another, but a matter of survival and safety against hostile clans and raiding bandits. In times of danger, a clansman can always count on the help an protection of his fellow brothers and sisters of the clan. Showing outsiders that the clan does not always stand together as one only makes it a target for enemies who would think they can assault warriors or raid farms without repercussions. When threatened by outsiders, clansmen always stick together, even when at other times they might be trying to kill each other. Allowing outsiders to attack fellow clansmen or even assisting them in it is considered a crime against the clan and could even lead to exile or death if found to be commited for personal gains.
    The duties and benefits of this trait also apply to Highborn characters and most Shamans.
    Suggested Skills: Handle Animal, Intimidate, Knowledge (Nature, Warfare), Profession (brewer, cook, farmer, herbalist, hunter, miller, sailor, woodcarver), Ride, Survival.

    Shaman
    Shamans are a special group within the society of every clan. They are the priests who maintain the peace between the people of the clan and the spirits of the land they inhabit and as such they have a great amount of power and respect regardless of the wealth and power of their families. When speaking on behalf of the spirits, even kings can not refuse the advice of their shamans.
    People who have a talent for communicating with the spirits and being aware of the spiritworld often become apprentice shamans at a young age. While they usually tend to life somewhat removed from the rest of the clan and mostly keep to each other, some gifted people who are not druids or clerics themselves live with them as their assistants and servants and might also be treated as members of the shaman class.
    Spirit Advisers (based on the Researcher Background Trait): Shamans know how to cummune with the spirits to gain access to their knowledge and wisdom. The words of spirits are often cryptic, but they can tell shamans what to do or where to look for clues that will help them get the answers they need.
    Suggested Skills: Heal, Knowledge (Arcana, Forbidden Lore, History, Nature, Religion), Persuasion, Sense Motive, Survival.

    Hermit
    Hermits are people who have forsaken their former lives as members of their clan and instead have isolated themselves from society to follow a higher calling. While people without a clan are usually regarded as suspicious and unworthy of trust, hermits face none of these resentiments and are instead highly respected throughout all society. Many hermits are wizards or druids who are not shamans of a clan, but some are simple scholars or monks who seek out solitude to persue their spiritual development.
    Free Passage (based on the Licensed Fool Background Trait): Hermits live outside the normal rules of society and are respected and wellcome among all social classes. Even if they spend the last night sleeping in a cave or cared for the sick and poor they will not be seen as unfit to be invited into the homes of even the most wealthiest and respected families. Hermits can go everywhere and talk to anyone without any damage to their reputation, and those with sufficient charisma can even get away with refusing the invitations and wishes of chiefs and kings. Hermits are sacred men and women wherever they go and whatever they do, as long as people regard them as sincere in their removal from daily life. A hermit who is seen acting without dignity or being rude and offensive, might very soon lose the respect of people from all classes.
    Suggested Skills: Heal, Knowledge (Arcana, Forbidden Lore, History, Nature, Religion, Sciences), Persuasion, Sense Motive, Survival.

    Freeman
    The Freemen are people who don't belong to the old families of a clan but are still granted permission to live and work on the land of a clan and recieve some form of protection. While freemen are not granted the previlege of protection against outsiders that is given to members of the clan, simply living on the land of a powerful clan provides a great amount of safety and many clansmen families do not approve at all of any troublemakers near their homes, even if they don't target members of the clan. Freemen are basically guests of the chief or one of his sub-chiefs and as such have no say in the politics of the clan, but they are also treated as being trustworthy if a chieftain allows them to live among the people of his clan.
    Since they have no own land, freemen usually work as servants or farmhands, or sometimes as craftsmen or even advisers to the chiefs, which can make them quite wealthy and respected and is a good position to be elevated to clansmen one day. Some trade towns exist outside the lands and control of any clan, and these are usually ruled and governed by wealthy and powerful freemen.
    Background Trait: Still open.
    Suggested Skills: Gather Rumors, Knowledge (Folklore), Persuade, Profession (any), Sense Motive.

    Commoner
    At the bottom of society are the commoners. In theory they belong to the clansmen and freeman classes, but most are poor, uneducated, and work as servants and farmhands for the wealthier families. Even though they have the right to take part in descisions that affect the village, those who have their own small farms and workshops usually have no influence in the councils at all.
    Common Ground (based on the Salt of the Earth Background Trait): Life for commoners is pretty much the same everywhere and in all clans, and most commoners are not nearly as commited to their clans and chiefs as the clansmen would wish to believe. Instead, most commoners regard each other as equals regardless of their clans and masters. While commoners are lacking the power and influence of clansmen, they have good chances to find shelter or even a hiding place among commoners of any clan, even hostile ones. Most commoners will be reluctant to extend such favors to any of the commoners companions who are clansmen or even highborn, as it puts them at a much higher risk than sheltering mere commoners nobody really cares about anyway, but some might be persuaded to do so.
    Suggested Skills: Drive, Gather Rumors, Handle Animal, Knowledge (Folklore, Nature), Persuade, Profession

    Outcast
    At the very bottom of society, even below the commoners, are the outcasts. Outcasts are people who have no clan and are forced to survive on their own or in small desperate groups at the edges of civilization. People who are without any clan are considered inherently unworthy of any trust as they have either done something terrible to be exiled from their clan, or at the very least their parents did, and no child of such parents could be trusted either. As a result, many outcasts eventually resolve to becoming thieves or bandits, or even more dispiseable things, which only reinforces the bad reputation given to all members of their class. Outcasts have to hide their status at all time when traveling to civilized areas and usually can't stay long before they are expected to petition the local sub-chief to be granted permission to live on his land, which would only expose their irreputable background.
    Underworld Contacts: As outcasts are always hiding and have to avoid being detected, they are familiar with all the secret signs and customs of the underworld that exist in almost every larger settlement even if most locals are not aware of it. Outcasts can make contact with local smugglers, thieves, and other criminals in any given town or city without putting them on allert and getting potential doors closed in front of them. Outcasts who have gained the trust of any traveling companions of higher status usually have to make the initial contact alone as members of the underworld are always weary of being exposed.
    Suggested Skills: Bluff, Gather Rumors, Intimidate, Sense Motive, Sneak, Spot, Survival.
    Spriggan's Den - Thoughts on RPGs and some of my personal creations.

    When you start dividing quotes into blocks to reply to each paragraph seperately, that's usually a strong sign that you're no longer contributing to the thread, but just arguing over who is right.

  15. - Top - End - #15
    Dwarf in the Playground
    Join Date
    Oct 2012

    Default Re: Ancient Lands - Sword & Sorcery Campaign Setting, Take 3

    Love the post. Have you considered giving each social class a feat a bit like Highborn Drow?

  16. - Top - End - #16
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Yora's Avatar

    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Germany

    Default Re: Ancient Lands - Sword & Sorcery Campaign Setting, Take 3

    No, I think that wouldn't fit with the way magic is supposed to work. Humanoids are completely nonmagical creatures, except for the casting of spells.
    Spriggan's Den - Thoughts on RPGs and some of my personal creations.

    When you start dividing quotes into blocks to reply to each paragraph seperately, that's usually a strong sign that you're no longer contributing to the thread, but just arguing over who is right.

  17. - Top - End - #17
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    ReaderAt2046's Avatar

    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Ancient Lands - Sword & Sorcery Campaign Setting, Take 3

    I'd suggest making the Freemen class feat sometihing along these lines:

    Greater Detachment: Neither limited by deprivation like the commoners and outcasts, nor by duties like the clansfolk, the Freemen are uniqely suited to officially move between clans as merchants and diplomats. Noone finds it odd for a party of Freemen to move between clans regularly, and they tend to know the roads, the geography and the politics better than any other class.
    Prince Fraternal of Pudding, Snuzzlepal, Feezy Squeez Lover, MP, Member of The Most Noble And Ancient Order Of St. George, King of Gae Parabolae.

    Lego Ergo Sum

    "Everyone's cute if you just look at them the right way"~Rebekah Patton Durham, Princess of Pudding.

    "If they have stats, we can kill them... I'd like to point out that we also have stats..." ~ PhoenixGuard09.

    Warhammer 40K: Where the faction that is a cross between the Inquisition and Space Nazis are the good guys.

  18. - Top - End - #18
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Yora's Avatar

    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Germany

    Default Re: Ancient Lands - Sword & Sorcery Campaign Setting, Take 3

    And interesting idea. Doesn't fit at all with what I had in mind for that class, but it might even be something better.
    But it would remove the element that people without a chief to vouch for them and take responsibility for their actions aren't worth anything. Finding a chief to take them in would be rather important and negate the element of wandering the world.
    Spriggan's Den - Thoughts on RPGs and some of my personal creations.

    When you start dividing quotes into blocks to reply to each paragraph seperately, that's usually a strong sign that you're no longer contributing to the thread, but just arguing over who is right.

  19. - Top - End - #19
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Yora's Avatar

    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Germany

    Default Re: Ancient Lands - Sword & Sorcery Campaign Setting, Take 3

    So now that the style is sufficiently defined, it's time to get to the substance.
    Though I like using D&D rules systems for several reasons, I don't want this to be a D&D world that has everything from the PHB and takes most other stuff from splatbooks. In recent years, both Dragon Age and Mass Effect have been great examples for settings that are original and have both cultures and creatures that are different from the generic kitchen sink stuff.
    I did have a couple of ideas, but those really didn't work out to become something great, like lizardfolk being the most numerous race with the largest empires.
    So while I am working on this, you are invited to throw in suggestions yourself.

    What I have so far:
    - Wild/Wood elves as the "primary race". They have a couple of major strongholds the size of small cities, but mostly it's small villages that do some farming for fruits and vegetables, but live mostly on hunting and keeping sheeps and goats.
    - Wild Dark Elves, as in the Eberron setting. They are basically drow that live like wild elves, but are mostly nocturnal and spend most of the day in cave homes and come out only after the sun disappears behind the trees of the jungle during the afternoon and village squares and markets begin to really fill around sunset. They are also influences by Dunmer from The Elder Scrolls, which I like quite a lot.
    - Gnomes as the only short guy race, as they can be both like dwarven miners and smiths and halfling thieves at the same time. Calling them gnomes also helps to reinforce the notion that these guys are not the generic rude alchoholic scottish viking miners. Whatever you do with dwarves, they always turn out that way and I don't like that culture. And with having gnomes, halflings become redundant.
    - Humans have to be in the setting becuase otherwise everyone will think this is an elven fanboy setting and nobody would play it. The difference is, that humans are one of the minor races who are not particularly numerous and lack big cities and great armies. They are what the Greek and Romans would have called barbarians, simply for the fact that they are not part of their culture and not as advanced as they are. There are enough of them to run entire campaigns limited only to the small human lands and they can also be played to start with something familiar and the set out into the wider world, where both characters and players learn more about the rest of the world.
    - I still want to keep lizardfolk, but I think I keep them down to be savages and either live in small camps in the southern jungles, or as the legions of servants and soldiers for naga, who are and ancient and highly advanced race from the spiritworld.

    If it needs to, this would be enough races for a setting, but I think it's also an opportunity to ad some really new and original things to it.
    Spriggan's Den - Thoughts on RPGs and some of my personal creations.

    When you start dividing quotes into blocks to reply to each paragraph seperately, that's usually a strong sign that you're no longer contributing to the thread, but just arguing over who is right.

  20. - Top - End - #20
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    ReaderAt2046's Avatar

    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Ancient Lands - Sword & Sorcery Campaign Setting, Take 3

    You mentioned that a big setting point is that everything has its own soul, including trees and rocks. Maybe you could make a couple of these playable races, like dryads and naiads?

    Also, you could have races of beast-men (merging human/elf with various animals)
    Prince Fraternal of Pudding, Snuzzlepal, Feezy Squeez Lover, MP, Member of The Most Noble And Ancient Order Of St. George, King of Gae Parabolae.

    Lego Ergo Sum

    "Everyone's cute if you just look at them the right way"~Rebekah Patton Durham, Princess of Pudding.

    "If they have stats, we can kill them... I'd like to point out that we also have stats..." ~ PhoenixGuard09.

    Warhammer 40K: Where the faction that is a cross between the Inquisition and Space Nazis are the good guys.

  21. - Top - End - #21
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Yora's Avatar

    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Germany

    Default Re: Ancient Lands - Sword & Sorcery Campaign Setting, Take 3

    I plan to have the four elemental genasi as kind of aasimar races, but I think I'll keep them rare in numbers so they don't effectivly constitute a distinct culture in the world.
    Other fey will be quite alien and supernatural and very inhuman. That's something where the blurring has to be kept very low to work. Nymphs may almost look like elves, but that's where the similarities end. Most other spirits will be closer to elementals and animal ghosts.

    Beastmen have been quite high on my list for a long time.

    One version, which I will almost certainly include, is based on a mix of Tauren/Cathar with the visual style of the Fearai from Primal. [1], [2], [3] Even though I want them to take the place of civilized orcs, I don't want them to be like either orcs or hobgoblins but something else. Something similar to a predatory version of the Warcraft Tauren perhaps. Earlier attempts didn't really result in anything but their general appearance, but this time I might try to come up with a unique culture and lifestyle for them very early on before thinking about where they are living and how they interact with their neighbors. That always just resulted in another type of civilized orcs.

    Another thing would be something like Ratfolk/Shifters/Mithra. Shorter than humans, taller than gnomes, and also quick and clever, but not siginificantly advanced culturally. I think they could work similar to the non-cannibalistic halflings from Dark Sun.

    I also want the primitive fish people that everyone has kept coppying for the last 100 years, be they Deep Ones, Kuo-toa, Murlocs, or whatever else you want. It's always the very same thing, and I like them. However, I think they would almost entirely monsters and pretty much never appear as one of the civilized races. Some remote coastal villages might trade with them, but that's it. They don't visit the markets or have any visitors to their settlements.

    For the Underworld, I have planned goblins, grimlocks, and derro, but that's more like an alternative nightmare dimension inhabited by the descendants of mad cultists from the normal world, so I wouldn't count them among the civilized races either.

    I think this might actually be more than enough races for a setting with a good variety of races and cultures, but they are all things I've been dragging along through my setting notes for years, and I still hope to come up with something fresh that could give the setting a unique character. Like planescape has the Gith and Dark Sun has the Thri-kreen.
    Spriggan's Den - Thoughts on RPGs and some of my personal creations.

    When you start dividing quotes into blocks to reply to each paragraph seperately, that's usually a strong sign that you're no longer contributing to the thread, but just arguing over who is right.

  22. - Top - End - #22
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Yora's Avatar

    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Germany

    Default Re: Ancient Lands - Sword & Sorcery Campaign Setting, Take 3

    Tribes of the Ancient Lands
    I've been thinking a lot on how to approach the many peoples of the ancient lands, going with sub-races, city-states, clan alliances, small empires, and so on. And I think what works the best for me is to go by culture. Each culture is represented as a tribe, which consists of a couple of hundred thousand people to a few million. These people share the same language, customs, rites, clothing, technology, and so on.

    Northland Elves: These elves live in the northern parts of the Ancient Lands, in the sub-arctic forests and hills. They are relatively small in number compared to the other elven tribes and have few major settlements. They tend towards taller sized for elves and have dark hair and fairer skin than most other people of the ancient lands, only tanning slightly in the short summers of their homelands. The elves of the northlands usually work with stone and their homes and keeps can withstand almost all storms without any real damage. They dress mosty in wool and furs in winter, with finer cloths mostly being reserved for shirts and underskirts, as most of them are traded from peoples to the south. Many of the clans know how to work steel and warriors of the northland clans often wear chainmail and carry straight one-handed swords in addition to their spears and bows. In addition to their druids, who often live in small groups outside of the villages, northland elves also have many witches who serve as healers and protectors against magical beasts and evil spirits.
    Northern Wood Elves: The Northern Wood Elf tribe is one of the larger tribes of the ancient lands. Most clans live in small villages of wooden huts, which are sometimes located up in the treetops, but not as often as with the southern wood elves. Members of the northern wood elf tribe have light brown skin and brown hair that is often in darker shades. Warriors usually dress in armor made from layers of textiles and plant fibres, covered by backings of leather, or more rarely scale armor and lamellar made from bronze. In addition to spears and bows, they often carry short swords and they are also the only elven tribe that uses hatchets and battleaxes in large numbers. Most villages have their own druid but witches are less common and are often hermits who do not belong to any specific village of their clan.
    Southern Wood Elves: The southern wood elves resemble the northern wood elves in many ways, but are often distinguishable by their lighter hair colors that include dark blond and red similar to autumn leaves, which are very rare anywhere else in the ancient lands. Many towns and villages of the southern wood elves lie close to the sea and most ships that travel along the coasts of the ancient lands are manned by southern wood elves. While most of their weapons and armor is made from bronze, high ranking warriors often carry steel scimitars as symbols of their station and know how to use them.
    Wild Elves: Closely related to the wood elves, the wild elves are more reclusive and live by a more primal lifestyle. Wild elves tend to have deeply tanned skin and usually dark brown hair. Armor is rare and usually made of plant fibres and leather, with bronze mostly used in spear and arrow tips and in daggers. Armor is often limited to a simple breastplate, but hunters and warriors often wear elaborate warpaint as well, with identifies their station. However, wild elves of other professions also often have their own painted markings. While wild elves don't trade as much with other peoples as most other tribes do, their reaction to outsiders depends entirely on the specific village and can differ greatly even within a clan.
    Grey Elves: The grey elves are neighbors of the wild elves and have a very similar culture, but are easily told apart by their dark elven appearance with charcoal black skin and pale blond to light grey hair. Unlike other dark elves, their hair can also be a naturally dark grey, which is mostly found in clans that have close relationships with wild elf clans. Grey elves are generally more welcoming of outsider than either Wild elves or Dark elves and much of the trade from dark elven lands passes through their merchants.
    Dark Elves: The dark elves are one of the larger tribes like the northern and southern wood elven tribes. Their skin is charcoal black and they have hair in many shades of pale blond and light grey. While dark elves use only very few iron and steel, they produce very sophisticated goods from bronze like short scimitars, kukris, scale armor, and lamellar. Among dark elves, druids are the nobility and have their homes on hills and around groves located above the rest of the town. While not welcoming of outsiders, their main enemies are the lizardfolk that live just beyond the borders of their territory.
    Dusk Elves: The Dusk Elves are a small and diverse people of dark elves that live scattered throughout the northern lands, often isolating themselves from the wood elven clans that populate those areas. They have only a few major settlements that are well hidden and usually underground, mostly living in camps and having a reputation of vagabonds who are not much better than clanless outcasts.
    Vandren: The Vandren are the major human group in the Ancient Lands. Originally from lands in the west, they arrived in the region only a few centuries ago as guards for caravans crossing the uninhabited plains west of the ancient lands. The Vandren have medium tanned skin and deep black hair, which makes them unmistakable for any of the few native human clans. The Vandren brought with them cattle, which are much larger than the goats, sheeps, and reindeer traditionally kept by the peoples of the ancient lands, and which are a great symbol of pride for their culture. They lack any main homeland in the ancient lands, but their settlements are often clustered along trade roads and rivers that run along the territories occupied by the other tribes.
    Surri: The Surri are a small human tribe that has lived in the ancient lands for as long as anyone knows and who have been neighbors with the Northland elves ever since. The surri live mostly from raising reindeer and fishing in the many lakes and rivers of the northern lands, with some coastal villages also making their living by whaling. Like the elves of the region, the skin of Surri is relatively fair and they have bright brown hair of a much lighter shade than found in almost any of the other tribes.
    Amakari: Like the Surri in the north, the Amakari are a small human tribe that has lived in the ancient lands long before the first Vandren arrived. The amakari have dark skin and black hair and beards, and are at home on the islands off the coast of the lands inhabited by the dark elves and lizardfolk. They have no armor and barely any metal, but they are great sailors who often trade with merchant ships passing through their home islands.
    Hill Gnomes: Though not very large in numbers compared to other tribes, hill gnomes are the larger of the gnome people. They often make their home in mountainous terrain and the foothills of larger mountain ranges and are somewhat scattered around the northern lands. In addition to digging their homes in the ground, they are also highly skilled miners who produce many of the valuable metals in the ancient lands from ores mined deep within the rock of the mountains. Because of this, they are also the best smiths to work in steel and the guards of their towns and strongholds are often well equiped with steel scale armor and lamellar, and halberds and battleaxes.
    Forest Gnomes: Forest Gnomes are mostly found in less rocky terrain and deeper within the great forests of the northlands. Their villages tend to be more accessible from the surface than hill gnome settlements but often just as hidden and secluded with few outsiders knowing where to find them. Forest gnomes rarely have to rely on hunting and instead tend to make it even through longer winters entirely with food they grew in their fields and the sheep they are raising. Unlike hill gnomes, forest gnomes rarely chose to bunker up and sit out and threats and instead rely much more on secrecy and evasion to deter any bandits or hostile neighbors.
    Hill Kaas: The largest tribe of the kaas lives in the hills and plains west of the great forests of the ancient lands. They make their homes in large well protected camps and live mostly by hunting and herding and the farming of a few sturdy crops that can survive in the often harsh weather of the region.
    Mountain Kaas: North of the hills and plains live the mountain kaas whose culture is centered around sturdy fortresses and strongholds up in the mountains. They are bigger and stronger than even the other kaas tribes and only their druids have a status that rivals that of their warriors. Larger clans often keep a few enslaved trolls for heavy labor, but usually only in small numbers to keep them from trying to fight back against their masters.
    Forest Kaas: The forest kaas are a relatively small and dispersed tribe, consisting mostly of solitary clans that live on the edges of the wood elf lands. Their villages are led by their druids and hunters are not an uncommon sight in towns that are open to outsiders for trade.
    Naga Tribe: The most powerful of the lizardfolk clans are those still under the rule of the naga. While there is a clear hirarchy with the naga at the top and lizardfolk at the bottom as slaves, the lizardfolk outnumber the naga to such a degree that they often hold positions of power such as town leaders and military officers. Though the naga dictate the course of action and make all the important descisions, most of the day to day administration is done by high ranking lizardfolk officials. The naga themselves are far from a unified power and often at conflict and even war with each other, but to outsiders there is very little difference between the clans.
    Jungle Tribe: The lizardfolk of the jungle tribe overthrew their naga masters long ago and since then have returned to governing their clans themselves. There are thousands of clans all over the jungles and they are highly diverse, but they all share the heritage of the knowledge and magic their naga masters once possessed and still exist in small fragments among them.
    Island Tribe: Off the coast of the southern jungles lie many islands that are home to some human clans and large numbers of lizardfolk. These lizardfolk were never ruled by the naga to any significant degree and they still preserve most of their ancient culture. Items made of bronze are rare among the island tribes and they still mostly rely on stone and obsidian for their weapons and make their armor out of plant fibres and whale bones.
    Savage Tribe: Similar to the island tribe, the savage tribe is a loose collection of wild lizardfolk clans that have always existed beyond the territory controlled by the naga during the height of their rule. The savages are the most primitive of the lizardfolk tribes and also the most agressive. Savage clans are hostile to almost everyone, be it naga tribe clans, jungle tribe clans, or dark elven clans. They are also bigger and stronger and often eat their killed enemies.
    Last edited by Yora; 2012-11-13 at 06:07 AM.
    Spriggan's Den - Thoughts on RPGs and some of my personal creations.

    When you start dividing quotes into blocks to reply to each paragraph seperately, that's usually a strong sign that you're no longer contributing to the thread, but just arguing over who is right.

  23. - Top - End - #23
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    Zap Dynamic's Avatar

    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    On Another Adventure
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Ancient Lands - Sword & Sorcery Campaign Setting, Take 3

    Really glad to see this again! Ker-bookmarked!
    Avatar by the wonderful and talented Ceika!
    Running: The Blackwood | IC | OOC
    Playing: Cachimba | Dowrenland | IC

    Past Faves: Raaneka

    My DeviantArt.

  24. - Top - End - #24
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Yora's Avatar

    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Germany

    Default Re: Ancient Lands - Sword & Sorcery Campaign Setting, Take 3

    Okay, now I have the list of tribes wrapped up. Should be about 19 so far, which seems a good number. Now they need a lot more of fleshing out, making them into distinct cultures with social orders, customs, and religion. After this is done I can continue to coming up with a more specific geography for them to inhabit. This is a rather upside down approach, but since the setting is all about the cultures and the environments they inhabit, I think this works better than starting with a map and then comming up with ideas what people might live in those places.

    As this is a relatively early stage, I am open to suggestions of any kind. Anything that you think might be an interesting aspect or element for a tribe of the ancient lands is welcome. Even if I don't go with a suggestion for a specific tribe, I still might use the idea for another one. So feel free to blurt out anything that comes to mind.
    Spriggan's Den - Thoughts on RPGs and some of my personal creations.

    When you start dividing quotes into blocks to reply to each paragraph seperately, that's usually a strong sign that you're no longer contributing to the thread, but just arguing over who is right.

  25. - Top - End - #25
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    ReaderAt2046's Avatar

    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Ancient Lands - Sword & Sorcery Campaign Setting, Take 3

    Some random thoughts:

    The Vanderen would probably be looked down on by nearly everyone else, sort of the way Freemen are looked down on by Clansman. They would also probably compensate by a sort of tribe-wide ambition.

    The Northern Elves and the Northern Wood Elves would probably have a bit of ideological squabble between the ice of the northern elves and the growth of the wood elves.
    Prince Fraternal of Pudding, Snuzzlepal, Feezy Squeez Lover, MP, Member of The Most Noble And Ancient Order Of St. George, King of Gae Parabolae.

    Lego Ergo Sum

    "Everyone's cute if you just look at them the right way"~Rebekah Patton Durham, Princess of Pudding.

    "If they have stats, we can kill them... I'd like to point out that we also have stats..." ~ PhoenixGuard09.

    Warhammer 40K: Where the faction that is a cross between the Inquisition and Space Nazis are the good guys.

  26. - Top - End - #26
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Yora's Avatar

    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Germany

    Default Re: Ancient Lands - Sword & Sorcery Campaign Setting, Take 3

    That's something to consider. Thanks for the input.

    Here's a couple of images that could help showcase the kind of style I am going for with the cultures.



    Also, I made this basic graph to show who is sharing borders with whom. Gets a bit cluttered in the North, with both Vandren, Dusk Elves, and Forest Kaas being no cohesive groups and often overlapping with the other tribes, but I think it gets you a basic image of what people might come into somewhat regular contact with each other.
    Spoiler
    Show
    Spriggan's Den - Thoughts on RPGs and some of my personal creations.

    When you start dividing quotes into blocks to reply to each paragraph seperately, that's usually a strong sign that you're no longer contributing to the thread, but just arguing over who is right.

  27. - Top - End - #27
    Dwarf in the Playground
    Join Date
    Oct 2012

    Default Re: Ancient Lands - Sword & Sorcery Campaign Setting, Take 3

    Quote Originally Posted by Yora View Post
    No, I think that wouldn't fit with the way magic is supposed to work. Humanoids are completely nonmagical creatures, except for the casting of spells.
    Well, maybe I used a wrong example. In an early draft of my world, when it was still based on 3.x, every social class had a feat, which granted them bonuses to certain skill checks. Small bonuses, like +2.

  28. - Top - End - #28
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Yora's Avatar

    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Germany

    Default Re: Ancient Lands - Sword & Sorcery Campaign Setting, Take 3

    That's what I use the background traits for. They just provide a non-nummerical bonus to interactions than a specific modifier to certain rolls.
    Spriggan's Den - Thoughts on RPGs and some of my personal creations.

    When you start dividing quotes into blocks to reply to each paragraph seperately, that's usually a strong sign that you're no longer contributing to the thread, but just arguing over who is right.

  29. - Top - End - #29
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Yora's Avatar

    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Germany

    Default Re: Ancient Lands - Sword & Sorcery Campaign Setting, Take 3

    To make the world unique and not just another generic fantasy setting, I want to include some "asian visuals" to make things a bit different. Like the Night Elves in Warcraft combine Japanese and Scandinavian architecture.

    Here's some stuff I already have:
    Bamboo
    Straw Hats
    Turtles
    Rakshasa (though still the D&D type)
    Oni
    Naga
    Hengeyoukai (natural lycanthropes from the spiritworld)
    Lamellar armor
    Naginata (as glaives)

    More ideas are welcome.
    Spriggan's Den - Thoughts on RPGs and some of my personal creations.

    When you start dividing quotes into blocks to reply to each paragraph seperately, that's usually a strong sign that you're no longer contributing to the thread, but just arguing over who is right.

  30. - Top - End - #30
    Dwarf in the Playground
    Join Date
    Oct 2012

    Default Re: Ancient Lands - Sword & Sorcery Campaign Setting, Take 3

    Nice idea. Will you use Asian names, too? They might go nicely with your idea of hierarchical society...

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •