This is the setting that I run at home. I've been in the process of writing everything up, mostly for my benefit so I can be consistent in Gming. If some player asks me who the mayor of roadtown is I don't want to give an answer I'll regret.
Here are the gods. I need to do a proper write up of them eventually, which I will put here.
This is Auguros.
These are the major bodies of water.
This is how the world is divided by region.
And this is how the world is divided by country.
Right now I'm working on descriptions of the different countries. This is very much a work in progress! Input of others helps to keep me motivated, especially with critiques. Sometimes I just have ideas that don't make sense.
Soon I will record the stats of every player race, as well as write a history of the world. Until then...
The center of civilization, commerce, and magic on Auguros (or so the heartlanders would tell you) is the Heartlands. The lands west of the Gold sea and east of the Noble Mountains are the Heartlands.
Most heartlanders are human, but they are a mixed bag of genetics. Halfbreeds are more common in the Heartlands than anywhere else on Auguros.
In the old days before the fall of the giant empire everything north of Urkaz was giant controlled. They were overthrown by the invasion of the Artorians (humans from the southern desert) which led to the start of the current age and calendar. For centuries wars and border disputes wracked the region until the creation of the Treaty of Six Nations in 904 AG.
The original six nations were Arvandor, Ryker, Thugiston, Velkyn, Urkaz, and Redder (which is technically a city state). Dragobor joined the alliance later and is now considered a Heartlands nation even though it is geographically in the North. The country of Greatshore in the West is made up of immigrants from the Heartlands and is considered to be somewhat of a 'coalition effort' of the Six Nations.
The Treaty is designed to unite all of the heartlands as allies. There are still border disputes and minor skirmishes from time to time, but all out war is all but impossible due to the way most of the Heartlands is governed now. The Treaty also ensures that the threat of war from outside the Heartlands is unlikely, because any military threat will be met with force from all seven nations.
NG Human Monarchy Population: 63% Human, 22% Halfling, 9% Elven/Half-Elven, 2% Ogre, 4% other Crest: A Sword arrayed over a field with a sunset in the background State Religion: Radus, Wolene, Aoxido
Arvandor is a mostly rural nation tucked between the Spine, Dagger, and Noble mountains. Arvandorians are taller than other heartlanders and more likely to be fair haired. They are renowned for their bravery in battle. They take inspiration from the medieval scottish and english.
Arvandor is considered to be the most martial of the heartlands nations, and this is true. Raiders from Thargard plague their western shore every summer. An uneasy truce exists between Arvandor and Dragobor. In the past Arvandor has warred with the mages of Ryker, but now they are strong allies.
Life In Arvandor
Arvandor is primarily rural, with few large towns. Most of it's citizens are farmers or soldiers. Arvandor is home to the largest concentration of halflings south of Avaron. Most halflings stick to the cities and towns, but they are not unknown anywhere.
Arvandor borders the elven forest of wildwood. Not only does this mean that they see more elves than most, but they also have to be prepared to face the monsters of the cursed wood. Arvandor is the first line of defense for any attack from the north by beasts or men, and this paints it's citizen's outlook. The are ready for anything. Almost anyone can be expected to fight in a militia.
Spine Mountains: Tall, jagged peaks separate Arvandor from the northlands. The easiest way across is Dragon Pass, which is guarded by Bodor's Fort. The guards at Bodor's Fort are always on the alert for a potential attack, be it from Dragobor, orc raiders, or monsters from the high mountains.
Dagger Mountains: The Dagger mountains are much more hospitable than the Spine. The foothills are home to numerous villages. Recently elves have been migrating out of the Wildwood into the foothills of the Daggers.
Lake Horn: Castle Arvandor is located on the shores of Lake Horn. It connects via the Red River to Haven Bay, and is a major trading route for the Arvandorans. The lake is said to be home to a powerful water spirit, but this is unproven.
The Dead Zone: Between Arvandor and Ryker there is a stretch of land where nothing gorws. It is a narrow strip of land about 2 miles across. It is the scar from the wars between Arvandor and Ryker, unhealed in the hundred years since it's accidental creation. On either side there are fortifications, not due to a fear of attack from their neighbor nation, but sometimes the ancient soldiers don't stay dead...
Castle Arvandor Town
GP limit 24,000
The capital of Arvandor is a fortified city on the shores of Lake Horn. Castle Arvandor sits above the town on a rocky hill. The gates of the castle are guarded by two statues of ancient Arvandoran heroes: Cale the Reckoner and Emila of Kent.
From here the king of Arvandor rules. The current king is Harald the Swift. He is a wise old man that still has strength in his arms to lift a sword. He leads his people with honor and a kind hand.
GP Limit 2200
Ogretooth was not built by the Arvandorans, and in fact used to be a giant's fortress. It was conquered by Cale the Reckoner in 304 AG. From then on the town has been growing around it. Ogretooth is located near the Dead Zone.
GP Limit 20,000
Templar Port is the largest coastal city of Arvandor. While not a vital trading hub, it is a primary ship building location for the Heartlands. The lands around Templar Port are attacked by Tharsh barbarians every summer.
Arvandor was once part of the elven dominion in the Age of Myth. With the coming of the titans and the rise of the Giant Empire the elves retreated entirely into wildwood. Humans from the south arrived and began to settle under the rule of the giants.
After the fall of the Giant Empire in 0 AG, Arvandor found itself in anarchy. It was 200 years before a man united the tribes and formed the country of Arvandor. This was Cale the Reckoner. In Cale's time, Arvandor was about half the size it is now. It wasn't until Emila of Kent in 534 AG that the western reach and Ogretooth were incorporated.
The people of Arvandor have never had much in the way of supernatural powers, so they have always turned to their god's of good and protection for help. Arvandor warred with the wizard state of Ryker for hundreds of years off and on before the Treaty of Six Nations. The powers of the wizards and clerics clashing on the borders is what led to the creation of the Dead Zone.
[spoiler]N Human Magocracy Population: 80% Human, 10% ogre, 3% halfling, 7% Other Crest: A circle divided into five equal portions State Religion: Bodos, Vilanox
Southeast of Arvandor lies the rocky land of Ryker. Uneven ground and rock formations dot the land between the Noble Mountains and the Gold Sea. Hidden in and around these rocks are the towers, keeps, and universities of Ryker. Clumped around the mage towers are the towns of the less magically gifted.
Rykerish humans are thin with dark hair. They are descended from the mountain folk of the noble mountains, but mixed with the taller northern people of Arvandor. Ryker was once ogre held land and there are still a great many of the giants aroudn today. They are integrated into Ryker society as heavy laborers and elite soldiers.
Life In Ryker
Ryker does not have the fields and lush farmland that it's neighbors boast. The land is rocky and the people more urban minded. Magic provides what the land wont, and so nobody is truly hungry in Ryker.
Almost everyone in Ryker is part of one of the five great houses: Blackrock, Montaz, Duras, Pefren, and Ryk. The great houses are all led by powerful mage lords. Each controls a sizable portion of the land of Ryker (except house Blackrock) and has holdings and mines across the continent. Competition between houses is fierce and sometimes leads to bloodshed, though rarely on a large scale. Anyone can join a great house, though there is a lengthy screening process to avoid treachery.
Ogre Forest and Lake Bonecrush: The northern border of Ryker, south of the Spine Mountains, is covered in thick evergreen forest. In ancient keeps and underground fortresses live the ogres. The ogre capital is called, creatively, Smashface. It is the only part of the forest where the law of Ryker is regularly enforced. The ogres are primarily members of House Duras.
Far Lake: Of the many lakes in Ryker, Far Lake is the largest. On a ridge on it's western shore lies the Montaz School of Illusion, one of the largest wizard colleges in Ryker. The nearby town of Wark is house Montaz's center of power.
Blackrock Academy: It is unknown whether House Blackrock is named for this place, or if it is the other way around. Blackrock Academy is a fortress built on a rock several miles offshore. It is a fortress, training ground, and prison.
The Rocks of Bodos: The major cities of Ryker have enormous rocky formations on their outskirts. Each bears the following phrase etched onto them: Sworn am I
to guard this land
from foes abroad
or traitor's hand
When battle looms
by blade or charm
arise I shall
and bring them harm
These are the rocks of Bodos, five earth elemental monoliths that are on the material plane as payment by the god Bodos for services rendered. It is known only by the current hegemon of Ryker what the mages exchanged to the dealmaker for such an enormous boon.
GP limit 10,000
The shores of Ryker are tall cliffs that stretch from Redder in the south almost to Dragobor in the north. Ryker the city is perched on the side of these cliffs, some would say precariously. It is the center of power in the mage country, as well as being the center of house Ryk and the seat of the hegemon. Ryker is a very minor port as it is incredibly difficult to move goods up and down the cliffs even with the extensive tunnel systems; most captains steer south to Redder. Ryker is also home to the Ryker Battlemage's College.
GP Limit 2,500
Located on the southern edge of the Dead Zone between Ryker and Arvandor, Durastown is heavily fortified for a reason. It is the center of House Duras, the most military minded of the great houses.
House Ryk: The original (and current) ruling house of Ryker is house Ryk. Ryk's goals are said to be the most 'pure': acquisition and protection of magical knowledge and power. House Ryk is known for it's use of abjuration, evocation, and transmutation magics. They train a great deal of battlemages.
House Ryk's leadership is a collective of powerful mages known as The Circle. They are chosen for ruthlessness, power, intelligence, and a dedication to House Ryk by the grandmaster of the house, who is also currently the hegemon of Ryker. The current grandmaster is Silas Farothorn, an ancient wizard who is said to be as powerful as he is shrewd.
House Blackrock: House Blackrock has a sinister reputation, and that's exactly how they like it. They train assassins and raise the dead to do their bidding, and those are only the most common practices of the house's mages. Unconcerned with the politics of others, House Blackrock sells their services to anyone who can pay them.
Blackrock offers their services as prison guards to everyone, thus they have dangerous prisoners from all over the world in the vaults of the dreaded Blackrock Academy. The leader of House Blackrock is called the father, an elected position. The current father is actually a woman by the name of Kallista. She is said to be a retired assassin.
House Montaz: House Montaz is not taken seriously as a general rule. They are devoted to the spreading of knowledge both magical and mundane. As such they hold the teachings of the deity Vilanox closer than most. Their school, Montazzo's School of Mystique, is the primary concern of house Montaz.
House Montaz is known for the use of illusion magic. They are also the most likely of any house to combine their arcane might with that of the church of Vilanox. If any of the great houses could be considered benevolent and good, it is Montaz. This house is led by a council of mages where no one mage has more say than another.
House Duras: The most militaristic of any of the houses, House Duras has simple goals: Protect the people of Ryker and gather as much might as possible. House Duras makes use of more mundane soldiers than any other house and is regarded as the least magical, but this is untrue. The mages of Duras are just as skilled as those of other houses.
Ogres make up a large portion of Duras' manpower. The leader of House Duras is in fact a powerful ogre mage named Bulrox. House Duras makes use of a great deal of summoning magic, calling demons and elementals from the Underworld and putting them to good use.
House Pefren: Pefren is an odd house. Mages join house Pefren to get away from politics and focus purely on their magical studies. The holds of Pefren are scattered across the southwestern side of Ryker, many hidden in the Black Forest and the foothills of the Noble Mountains.
House Pefren leads the way in the art of item creation. The magical forges and workshops of Pefren are only matched by those in the realms of the gods themselves. House Pefren's leaders prefer not to get in the way of each other or their subjects.
Ryker was once just another part of the Giant Empire. Human barbarians scratched a living out in the rocks while ogres and stone giants ruled with an iron fist. A giant citadel stood at the location that is now the city of Ryker. This citadel was a magical library that held a great deal of arcane secrets gifted to the giants by the titans. Many artorian mages stayed behind after the invasion of the heartlands and the fall of the giant empire. These mages eventually interbred with the natives of the region and became the Rykerish of today.
The rise of the five great houses did not come all at once. At first Ryker was a monarchy led by the Ryk dynasty. This eventually grew into House Ryk as the mages began to become more prominent. Over time more mages would set out and establish new holdings, which later grew into the other Houses.
For hundreds of years the suspicious northerners of Arvandor warred with Ryker. The wars ended soon after the coming of the Rocks of Bodos, the Arvandorans now too afraid to attack. Ryker was hesitant to enter in the Treaty of Six Nations as it limited their powers of intimidation with the other heartlands countries. They eventually joined willingly because they feared a joint attack by the other heartlanders.
LN Human Monarchy Population: 82% Human, 11% Dwarf, 7% Other Crest: A blue star on a white background, surrounded by seven smaller stars State Religion: Chelodo, Drod, Roru
A fertile valley in the Noble mountains contains the country of Velkyn, land of Sorcerors. It's people more closely remember the mountain folk than anyone else, being short, thin, and dark haired (Central Asian).
Over 1000 years ago Velkyn was a battleground during the Artorian invasion. Residual magic has never quite dissipated. In addition to making Velkyn a very magical land with many magical creatures, it has increased the number of sorcerors born every year tenfold.
LN Human Oligarchy
Metropolis, Population 49,000 Population: 60% Human, 13% Dwarf, 9% Halfling, 8% Orc, 10% Other Crest: Three horizontal red bars divided by white bars overlaid with a black dolphin State Religion: Vyus Gold Limit: 40,000
Ryker doesn't have any proper ports due to it's rocky shores. Redder is a city located between the rocky shores of Ryker and the gnoll infested forests of the Orcweald. These factors are major contributors in the wealth of Redder as it is the only major port on the west coast of the Gold Sea south of Dragobor in the frozen north.
Redder has managed to stay independant from nearby Thugiston and Ryker due primarily to judicious use of mercenaries and hired adventurers. Ryker would love to get Redder into their spell component pouches but are fearful enough of the powerful retired adventurers that rule the tiny country.
Located in the flatland south of Ryker, Thugiston is a land of inventors. Steam power, as well as the locomotive, were invented here. Thugistonians were the foundation layers for the railways that are beginning to connect the Heartlands together. They make heavy use of golems and similar constructs.
The ancestral homeland of the dwarves. From Urkaz Hold in the mountains the dwarves watch over their lightly forested land. Rangers patrol the mountains and forests, watching for monsters. There are humans here, as they are everywhere. Most of them live in the border town of Aiger. Aiger is under constant military readiness because of the gnolls of the Wildlands.
The northernmost coast of the Gold Sea and all the lands to the east of Dragonhammer Delve is Dragobor. Dragoborans are hardy people that manage to eke out a living on the tundra. They are known for their cavalry and their alliance with the minotaurs of the mountains. Dragobor and Arvandor have a history of meeting each other on the battlefield - the land between their nations is hotly contested.
The homeland of the dwarves. It is a rough land of rocky hills and and mountains. Urkaz Hold itself is the capital, a dwarven city built on the peak of the mountain. It is a major stop on the rail line.
A peninsula to the north, Thargard is cut off from the rest of the continent by water and mountains. The Tharsk are expert sailors and warriors who are greatly feared in the west and the heartlands. The Tharsk have a rich history and were never conquered by the giant empire, though they did war with them for ages. The Tharsk have a slightly lower technology and magic level in general than the Heartland's nations.
The cursed black forest of WIldwood lies to the north of Arvandor. It is a place of tall black trees and twisting underbrush. In this ancient wood the elves make their homes. Ever alert of danger from evil druids, plant monsters, and the dreaded Yggwanach, the elves are a cautious people. They have two large cities: Jacinth and Illuminoriden.
After the dwarven civil war the royalist faction walked north for years, looking for a new home. They found a massive canyon/sinkhole that scarred the snowfields of Avaron. Over centuries the Dragonhammer dwarves carved out a city. They tamed the wyverns of the nearby mountains and now ride them to battle.
The West is a wild frontier of sucking swamps and fetid jungles. Kelevar is on the northern edge of the Somber Jungle, on the shores of Black Bay. Within walled towns and villages on stilts live the hobgoblins. They were humans, once, but their devotion to the god Nihic twisted and cursed them when Nihic fell from grace. Kon Kelevar is the hobgoblin capital, a massive port and the largest city in the West.
You received training in an Arvandoran militia, and are always ready for battle. Requirements: Arvandoran born Benefit: You have a +2 competence bonus to initiative and perception checks. In addition, you are proficient in the use of the longsword.
Arcane Spellcasters: Arcane spellcasters of Auguros have their lifespan quadrupled. For example, a human wizard would reach middle age at 140 and could live to be as old as 480!
Clerics: Clerics cannot be devoted to a cause and still gain magical power. All divine magic comes from deities.
Gnomes come from the far north where they live in cities under the glaciers. Stuff stuff stuff blah blah will write soon.
+2 Constitution, +2 Charisma, –2 Strength: Gnomes physically weak, but hardy and naturally outgoing.
Small: Gnomes are Small creatures and gain a +1 size bonus to their AC, a +1 size bonus on attack rolls, a –1 penalty to their Combat Maneuver Bonus (CMB) and Combat Maneuver Defense (CMD), and a +4 size bonus on Stealth checks.
Slow Speed: Gnomes have a base speed of 20 feet.
Low-Light Vision: Gnomes can see twice as far as humans in conditions of dim light (see low-light vision.)
Defensive Training: Gnomes get a +4 dodge bonus to AC against monsters of the giant subtype.
Gnome Magic: Gnomes with a Charisma of 11 or higher also gain the following spell-like abilities: 1/day—dancing lights, ghost sound, prestidigitation, and obscuring mist. The caster level for these effects is equal to the gnome's level. The DC for these spells is equal to 10 + the spell's level + the gnome's Charisma modifier.
Hatred: Gnomes receive a +1 bonus on attack rolls against humanoid creatures of the giant type due to special training against these hated foes.
Cold Resistance: Gnomes get a +2 racial saving throw bonus against cold spells or effects. Gnomes have cold resistance 3.
Keen Senses: Gnomes receive a +2 racial bonus on Perception skill checks.
Obsessive: Gnomes receive a +2 racial bonus on a Craft or Profession skill of their choice.
Weapon Familiarity: Gnomes treat any weapon with the word “gnome” in its name as a martial weapon.
Languages: Gnomes begin play speaking Common and Gnome. Gnomes with high Intelligence scores can choose from the following: Draconic, Dwarven, Elven, Giant, Goblin, and Orc.
Locathah are a race of aquatic humanoids that are beginning to realize that the world above the waves is much better than their own. They are accustomed to a grim and hopeless life, and this more than anything else shapes their suspicious and dour outlook. Still, the locathah are slowly beginning to adapt to life on the surface. Physical Description Locathah are similar in height to a human, but their build is more like a human who has not eaten in weeks. They are extraordinarily thin, but possessed of a wiry strength. They have sharp spines and fins on their cheeks, elbows, and shins, as well as having webbed feet and hands. Their heads are like those of a lionfish. Locathah are usually dark colors such as brown, orange, or green, with lighter underbellies. They are covered in fine scales. Society
Locathah who live on the surface usually live in small towns on the edges of large water sources. They hide their settlements away from those of other races. This tendency to prefer isolation means that they often live in the wilds, far from civilization. Relations
Locathah are slow to trust. They like elves if they like anyone. They get along fairly well with the urkaz dwarves, who will at least always keep their word. They distrust and avoid everyone else for the most part. They trade with humans but hold their emotions and purses to themselves. Alignment and Religion
The locathah are accustomed to suffering the depredations of vicious beasts of the sea, servants of Dagon. Many still venerate him out of fear. Increasingly often these days, the locathah of the land are realizing that their evil god cannot harm them so far from the sea. Such locathah turn to worship the kinder gods of the land. Wolene and Imudru are popular, but Aoxido is their favorite. Most locathah are neutral. Locathah have no predilection to law or chaos. Adventurers
Many locathah turn to the adventuring life. Most seek to better their own position or that of their people. Locathah are intensely intrigued by a world that is not always wet and dark and seek to explore it. Male Names
Shorek, Nalskir, Dralaj, Manajuir, Kirac, Dirolp, Blipd Female Names
Jural, Nuurizha, Jeara, Korui, Mouna, Drasli, Poolda
Locathah Racial Traits
+2 dex, +2 wis, -2 con: Locathah are agile and spiritual, but tend towards fragility.
Medium, Slight Build: Locathah are medium sized creatures, but their thin bones and wiry muscles make them count as small when it would benefit them. They gain the small size bonus but no small size penalties.
Swimming: Locathah have a swim speed of 50 feet. A Locathah has a +8*racial bonus*on any*Swim*check to perform some special action or avoid a hazard. A Locathah can always choose to take 10 on a*Swim*check, even if distracted or endangered. A Locathah can use the*run*action while swimming, provided he swims in a straight line.
Low Light Vision: Locathah can see twice as well as humans in conditions of low light.
Aquatic (amphibious): Locathah are quite capable of breathing water or air.
Locathah Immunities: Locathah are immune to magic sleep effects and get a +2 racial saving throw bonus against necromancy spells and effects.
Slippery: Locathah have a +2 racial bonus to escape artist and stealth checks.
Distrustful: Locathah have a +2 racial bonus to sense motive checks.
Languages: Locathah start with common and deep speech. Bonus Languages: Aquan, Draconic, High Speech, Dark Speech.
Orcs are wild people of the sea. They are hugely muscled and possessed of a savage charm. From island fortresses their ships strike out across the Gold Sea, carrying the orcs to glory and riches. With the blessing of their god, Gudrun, the orcs fear no storms. On the Gold Sea, the orcs are the kings. Physical Description
Orcs stand about seven feet tall, with green skin and tusks jutting from their lower jaw. Most are lean and long limbed, with immense muscles. Their noses are flat and their ears are pointed. Orcs have black hair that turn white as they age. Orcs born with sorcerous talents sometimes have two small horns growing out of their foreheads. Orcs have brown or blue eyes. Horned orcs have white or black eyes. Society
There are many orc clans. Most live in villages or fortresses on the coasts of the Westar Islands. The leader of an orc clan is the Admiral, the most powerful of all the captains. Orcs are sailors, they have immense metal-clad ships covered in spikes. On their ship, the captain is the law. Relations
Orcs have a bad reputation with the humans of the Heartlands due to their nature as vicious raiders. This is strangely mirrored in the East, where the orcs are regarded as something like heroic and mysterious rogues; the East is where the orcs find easy buyers for hijacked goods. In the wildlands the orcs are looked at as an occasionally useful nuisance compared to the threat emanating from the gnoll-held city of Kesh. Alignment and Religion
Orcs tend strongly toward chaotic alignments. Orcs don’t have a tendency toward good or evil. Most orcs venerate Gudrun, the creator of the orcish race. Those that don’t tend to gravitate towards Setoc, Imudru, or Aoxido. Orcs that do not worship Gudrun do not lose their resistance to electricity. Adventurers
Orcs constantly seek glory and riches, so adventuring comes naturally to them. In fact, it could be said that orc adventurers are more common than orcs that are not adventurers!
Orc Racial Traits
+2 str, +2 cha, -2 int: Orcs have powerful bodies and personalities, but they are not terribly bright
Medium, Powerful Build: Orcs are medium sized, but count as large for any situation it would benefit them.
Blessed of Gudrun: Orcs have electricity resistance 3.
Orc Skills: Orcs gain a +2 racial bonus to Profession: Sailor and Intimidate checks.
Orc Weapons: Orcs are proficient with cutlasses, scimitars, and falchions.
Orc Immunities: Orcs are inherently peaceless creatures. They are immune to magic sleep affects and poison.
Languages: Orcs begin knowing Common and Orcish. Bonus Languages: Any.