Author Topic: Native PC Information Thread  (Read 83488 times)

Bluebomber4evr

  • Head DM, Developer and Ravenloft Trivia Guru/Community Council
  • Administrator
  • Dark Power
  • *
  • Posts: 20640
    • http://www.nwnravenloft.com
Pharazia
« Reply #25 on: February 18, 2008, 11:12:06 PM »
Pharazia

Cultural Level: Early Medieval

Climate: Tropical

Terrain: Deserts

Major Settlements: Phiraz (8,800)

Population: 10,200

Races: 99% Human, 1% Other

Languages: Pharazian

Religions: None. Pharazians revere Diamabel, the beauteous ruler of Pharazia, as a divine being, though he has no temples or clerics

Government: Moralistic Despotism

Ruler: Diamabel the Righteous

Currency: penance (gp), reproach (sp), blessing (cp)

Resources: wheat, barley, rice, millet, flax, melons, citrus, peas, beans, eggplant, figs, dates, coffee, camels, sheep, goats, cattle, cloth

Diplomacy: Diamabel and his subjects have a dim view of outsiders, and have little to no contact to anyone beyond the city of Phiraz. The nomads of Pharazia's vast tracts of desert engage in trade with the people of Har'Akir, however.

The Land: Pharazia is a domain of endless, searing desert as pitiless as the judgment of a god. The rolling dunes shift eternally in the burning winds, and rocky outcroppings emerge and vanish from the sand. Overhead, vultures circle the blazing eye of the sun, patiently waiting for thirst and exhaustion to overcome travelers. Sparkling oases break the harsh tedium of the wastes, though far too rarely for desert wanderers. The oases feed the domain's brackish, muddy rivers, where slews of crocodiles sun themselves on the banks. Swaying palm trees along the oases and rivers provide precious shade, but travelers must compete with the desert creatures that claim the cool shadows for themselves.

Near the center of the domain is the city of Phiraz, a dusky desert jewel on the shores of a shimmering oasis. The city's square buildings are constructed of stone brick covered in whitewashed plaster. Blessed breezes waft through the open portals of doorways and windows.

The most opulent structures are built of polished stone and decorated with intricate geometric mosaics. Slender spires and gleaming domes soar above the city, as if yearning to touch the heavens. Narrow streets wind between homes and shops, opening into plazas thronging with eager vendors.

The Folk: Pharazians are generally considered handsome and trim, with angular features and skin tones ranging from light olive-tan to a dusky bronze. Eye color is almost universally dark brown, though occasionally a child is born with jet-black eyes. Children with this eye color are considered a bad omen and are often killed at birth out of superstitious fear. Hair color is universally black, with men cutting theirs short while women grow theirs exceptionally long. Well-groomed facial hair is common among men. Typical Pharazian clothing consists of long, loose robes over trousers or skirts, plus traditional head cloths worn out of both modesty and practicality, as protection from the blistering sun and wind-blown sand. Women conceal their hair under shawls and their faces beneath veils in public. Typical footwear consists of sandals or slippers. Pharazians do not wear makeup or jewelry in public, as it is considered vulgar.

Diamabel's strict moral doctrines have made the Pharazian people tense, reserved, and mindful of their own words and deeds. Moral purity is paramount to them, though more out of tradition and fear than out of spiritual conviction. The peoples' speech often carries a palpable anxiety, as if they are fearful of uttering the wrong words. And these fears are not unfounded. Diamabel's confessors are vigilant for those who would stray from the fold. Pharazians will eagerly betray an offender to the confessors, if only to gain a brief respite for themselves from the confessors' watchfulness.

Deep in the sandy wastes, however, the desert nomads refuse to submit to Diamabel's laws. These hardy wanderers are always on the move, pitching their vividly colored tents in a different spot each night. The nomads are considered heretics by the people of Phiraz, for the nomads insist Diamabel is no divine being, but instead a corrupted mortal creature. Led by Sheikh Allahn el Rashaan, the nomads wear distinctive black robes and ride sleek horses and camels in their crusade against Diamabel.

The Law: Diamabel rules Pharazia with an unforgiving hand, demanding that his subjects submit to his demands with nothing less than perfect obedience. Diamabel is a pale, angelic creature with feathery wings and a blazing countenance. Pharazians believe he is a celestial sent among them to teach right word, thought, and deed. There is no god at the center of these commandments, only purity for its own sake. There are certain activities that must not be undertaken, foods that must not be eaten, words that must not be uttered, and thoughts that must not be pondered. Two hours of prayer are required each day for the penitent to reflect on their crimes and resolve to be obedient. The people are required to report infractions of the law of prayer.

Diamabel's laws are enforced strictly, without ambiguity or leniency. Subjects are either obedient or wayward, and the latter are punished harshly for their sins. Confessors, wearing pure white robes and wielding wicked scourges, patrol the streets of Phiraz escorted by armed warrior-zealots. The confessors are ever vigilant for errant souls, who are expected to repent and submit to brutal lashings. Naturally, the most brutal of Phiraz's citizens find their calling as confessors. The confessors have absolute discretion in meting out punishment, as their mandate comes from Diamabel himself. The worst transgressors are slain in the night by the Black Herald, a terrifying spectre rumored to be the embodiment of Diamabel's vengeance.

The nomads of Pharazia's desert are loyal to Sheikh Rashaan, who leads by virtue of his charisma, wealth, and battle prowess. Although they are sworn enemies of Diamabel, they have their own strict code of laws, and punishments no less severe than Diamabel's for breaking them; violent criminals and traitors are horrifically maimed and left in the desert to die. The nomads do not disdain the aid of outsiders, but they are a shifty, treacherous bunch. While their main goal is ridding the land of Diamabel and surviving the desert, they will not hesitate to kill those who disagree with them and their methods. They claim to know a sure method to bring about Diamabel's destruction, but will not share it with outsiders.

Classes: Barbarians, fighters, wizards. There are a small group of monks who try to embody Diamabel's edicts through asceticism within Phiraz. Sheikh Rashaan's nomads have a few rangers within their ranks. Sorcerers are rare here. Other classes are unheard of.

Recommended Skills: Antagonize, Influence

Recommended Feats: Endurance, Expertise, Two-Weapon Fighting, Voice of Wrath, Weapon Focus (scimitar)

Names:

-Pharazian Male Names: Abbas, Abdul, Abou-ali, Afsharafshin, Akbar, Ali-Naghi, Amir, Arash, Arshia, Assadollah, Azad, Aziz, Babak, Bahram, Behrouz, Bijan, Cyrus, Danush, Davood, Ebrahim, Eshqi, Esma'il, Ezatollah, Faraz, Fardad, Fariborz, Farrokh, Farzin, Fazlullah, Forouq, Ghaffar, Habib, Hamid, Hassan, Hesam, Hooman, Hormoz, Ja'far, Jahangir, Jalal, Kamal, Kamran, Karim, Kaveh, Kayvon, Key-khosrow, Khashayar, Kourosh, Mahmoud, Massoud, Mehdi, Mehran, Mehrzad, Mohammad, Mohsen, Morteza, Nader, Naseem, Nasr-ed-Din, Navid, Nosratdoleh, Parviz, Payam, Pejman, Rahim, Rashid, Reza, Sa'adi, Sa'id, Shahrokh, Vahid, Yashar, Yousef

-Pharazian Female Names: Akhtar, Ashraf, Azita, Bahareh, Banafsheh, Behbaha, Darya, Dina, Elaheh, Ezzati, Fakhri, Farahnaz, Farideh, Farnaz, Farzaneh, Fatimah, Forouzandeh, Ghamzeh, Ghazaleh, Gita, Golnessa, Gordia, Guita, Habibeh, Haideh, Hediyeh, Hengameh, Houri, Iman, Iran-dokht, Ishraqi, Jamileh, Khadijeh, Khatereh, Khojassteh, Khorshid, Kimiya, Laleh, Laqa, Leyla, Lili, Mahdokht, Mahin, Mahrokh, Mahshid, Malakeh, Marjan, Maryam, Mina, Mitra, Mona, Mozhgan, Naghmeh, Nahal, Naniyyih, Nasim, Neda, Niloufar, Noor, Olya, Omid, Pareesa, Pegah, Qudsiyyih, Rana, Reema, Reyhaneh, Riri, Roksana, Roshanak, Ruhiyyih, Salomeh, Samila, Samira, Sanaz, Seeta, Sepideh, Shahin, Shahrzad, Sheyda, Sima, Soraya, Talayeh, Vida, Zara, Zia-Ashraf

-Pharazian Surnames: Abedzadeh, Amir, Amirsadeghi, Awji, Bakhtavar, Bazargan, Dhabihiyan, Ebtehaj, Eftekhari, Fatemi, Gaffari, Haqiqat, Imami, Izadi, Jafari, Kazimi, Khadim, Khatami, Mahallati, Mahmudi, Mihdizadih, Mu'ini, Najafi, Nassiri, Qazai, Rahimi, Sadiqi, Salimpour, Shahriar, Vafa'i, Zahedi

Sources: Islands of Terror, Ravenloft 3rd Edition Campaign Setting
« Last Edit: June 13, 2021, 03:23:10 PM by EO »

Bluebomber4evr: The Justice, not you, since 2002

Bluebomber4evr

  • Head DM, Developer and Ravenloft Trivia Guru/Community Council
  • Administrator
  • Dark Power
  • *
  • Posts: 20640
    • http://www.nwnravenloft.com
Sanguinia
« Reply #26 on: February 19, 2008, 02:51:25 AM »
The Frozen Reaches Cluster

Sanguinia

Cultural Level: Early Medieval

Climate: Boreal

Terrain: Forest, Hills, Mountains

Major Settlements: Fagaras (800), Kosova (1,000), Tirgo (1,300)

Population: 6,300

Races: 99% Humans, 1% Other

Languages: Sanguine

Religions: none

Government: Hereditary Monarchy

Ruler: Prince Ladislav Mircea

Currency: frostmark (gp), chillpiece (sp), nip (cp)

Resources: wheat, rye, turnips, onions, reindeer, goats, trout, perch, timber, furs, gold, copper, iron, salt, gems

Diplomacy: No formal contact with any other nation. Sanguinia has had virtually no contact with the outside world for generations. Hunters have only recently discovered a pass into Vorostokov to the southeast, but the large, vicious wolves that prowl the wilderness have thus far stymied any contact.

The Land: Sanguinia is a domain of jagged, frozen mountains. The dizzying icebound peak of Mount Radu is the land's highest point. The slopes are treacherous, though primeval evergreen forests cling to them tirelessly. Rugged outcroppings and sheer ledges abound, making travel a lethal challenge for all but the most hardened mountaineers. Bitter winds scream across the heights, threatening to fling travelers from the mountain's face. Avalanches choke the mountain passes for months at a time.

Frozen streams tumble down the mountainsides, their waters a mere trickle beneath the thick crust. Silent waterfalls hang from the rocky precipices, caught forever as glittering curtains of ice. East of Mount Radu, the glassy surface of Lake Argus is pockmarked with the holes of ice fishermen. Sanguinia is dotted with menhirs carved with primitive images of mythic heroes and frightening behemoths. The mountain tribes that erected such monuments have vanished, and not even the Sanguinians know of their fate.

Villages in Sanguinia are gray bulwarks huddled against the weather's limitless fury. The buildings are squat, round edifices, the windowless walls constructed several feet thick with gray cobbles and boulders. The roofs are made of two layers of wooden planks and insulated with dry, packed evergreen needles. Much grander design is exhibited in Castle Guirgiu, the abode of Prince Mircea. Spired turrets pierce the mountain air, and the steep roofs of dark green slate are free of snow and ice. Although it is guarded only by a low wall and frozen moat, most Sanguinians quake at the thought of even approaching Mircea's dread domicile.

The Folk: Sanguinians are a rugged people, strengthened by a lifetime of clinging to the frigid mountains. They are generally broad, with wide hips and shoulders and deep chests. They are fair-skinned, although their cheeks are usually ruddy from the freezing air temperatures. Eye color is typically pale blue or gray, and hair color ranges from sandy brown to nearly black. Hair length for both sexes is typically long and wild. Men's beards and moustaches are carefully braided. Typical clothing is thick and durable, being made from multiple layers of hide stitched together with sawdust for insulation. Both sexes wear trousers, shirts and long coats, and often wear round fur hats. Clothing is usually darkly-colored. Boots are studded with iron spikes to provide traction on ice. Snowshoes are used for large expanses of snow.

Since the Sanguinians have managed to survive in such a hostile environment, they have a respect for endurance and practicality. They are honest and straightforward almost to a fault and have no patience for deception or timidity in others. Death comes easily in this land, so life is considered precious. Sanguinians cherish their children, are very expressive of their emotions, and live life as fully and as robustly as possible. They enjoy music, dance, and romance. A healthy birth is cause for the grandparents to sponsor a week of nightly feasting and dancing. Simple children's rhymes about nature and silly characters are popular even amongst the adults, who sing them passionately through the night. The only things Sanguinians fear are wolves, avalanches, and the bloodthirsty, misshapen vampires known to haunt the lonely mountain passes.

The Law: Prince Ladislav Mircea, a cruel young tyrant, rules Sanguinia with almost casual malice. Few have ever seen the reclusive monarch, though it is rumored that he is incredibly handsome. Although monstrously harsh to those who displease him, Mircea seems to govern solely for his own jaded amusement. He is easily distracted and involves himself with his realm only for as long as it entertains him. He sometimes skulks in Castle Guirgiu for months at a time, much to the relief of his subjects. Mircea levies severe taxes but demands little else from his people. His personal enforcers, clad in ashen coats and wielding battleaxes, usually only emerge from Castle Guirgiu to collect the taxes from each town. Settlements are otherwise left to govern themselves. Typically the most powerful landowners in each village serve on a council with limited seats. These councils are responsible for making broad decisions that affect the whole community, adjudicating disputes, and organizing local militias.

Classes: Barbarians, bards, fighters, rangers, and sorcerers.

Recommended Skills: Lore, Perform

Recommended Feats: Back to the Wall, Endurance, Power Attack, Weapon Focus (battleaxe)

Names:

-Sanguinian Male Names: Andrij, Bogdan, Danylo, Fedir, Gennadi, Hryhorii, Ilia, Ivan, Kostya, Lev, Marko, Mykhailo, Oleksander, Pavlo, Petro, Rhostislav, Roman, Sergei, Stanislav, Stepan, Vadim, Volodymir, Youri

-Sanguinian Female Names: Bohdanna, Iryna, Ivanna, Kilina, Lilia, Lioubov, Malanka, Maria, Marunia, Olena, Palahna, Svitlana, Valentyna, Vita, Zhanna

-Sanguinian Surnames: Andrukhovych, Artiukhov, Balakhonova, Baranovsky, Bazyr, Bezushko, Bialkevich, Bilyk, Bodrova, Borovoi, Bulkovsky, Cheryshova, Danylovych, Dergatchev, Dmitrenko, Dobrydnev, Dziuba, Frankivsk, Govorova, Herasymenkov, Ivankiv, Janchyskyj, Kalyna, Khorobehinski, Klochkova, Kolisnky, Kolpakov, Kosmenka, Kravchenko, Kryzhanovsky, Lavrinenko, Lishchinska, Malinevski, Nedelenko, Osovich, Pavlovych, Poliakov, Pomrenkel, Romanych, Savchuk, Stefaniuk, Teslenko, Varshavsky, Vasylenko, Volovyk, Zadinsky, Zadoinov

Sources: Realm of Terror, Ravenloft 3rd Edition Campaign Setting
« Last Edit: June 13, 2021, 08:02:03 PM by EO »

Bluebomber4evr: The Justice, not you, since 2002

Bluebomber4evr

  • Head DM, Developer and Ravenloft Trivia Guru/Community Council
  • Administrator
  • Dark Power
  • *
  • Posts: 20640
    • http://www.nwnravenloft.com
Vorostokov
« Reply #27 on: February 20, 2008, 03:40:12 AM »
Vorostokov

Cultural Level: Dark Age

Climate: Boreal

Terrain: Forests, plains, hills, mountains

Major Settlements: Kargo (100), Kirinova (100), Nodvik (100), Novayalenk (100), Oneka (100), Torgov (100), Voronina (100), Vorostokov (200)

Population: 1,100

Races: 99% Humans, 1% Other

Languages: Vos

Religions: none

Government: Formerly independent settlements shifting to despotism

Ruler: Boyar Gregor Zolnik

Currency: none, trade conducted through barter

Resources: wheat, beets, potatoes, carrots, onions, reindeer, goats, trout, perch, pike, sturgeon, spirits, furs, timber, resin, iron

Diplomacy: Although the occasional wanderer has stumbled upon "the valley of eternal winter" from time to time, Vorostokov has by and large remained cut off from the outside world for years. Rangers have recently discovered a pass in the northwest leading into Sanguinia, though grotesque creatures have been sighted descending from the mountains at night, frightening off all but the most bold.

The Land: Vorostokov is a vast, frozen valley crushed by endless cold and terrorized by brutish warriors. Ringed by jagged, treacherous peaks, the domain's trackless steppes and forests are buried under perpetual snow. Weary reindeer herds and humans alike subsist on lichens, bark, and the bitter evergreen nuts that sprout every three months. The dark conifer forests are venerable and perilous, haunted by huge wolves and restless snow spirits. Brutal winds constantly whistle across the plains, and lethal blizzards are a weekly occurrence throughout the domain. The icebound Trau River meanders southwest across Vorostokov, draining into the black waters of the aptly named Bottomless Lake.

Vorostokov's tiny settlements are scattered, each a self-sufficient speck of civilization amid the frozen wastes. The domain's log buildings are long and low, single-room structures that reek of pitch and pine resin. The gabled roofs are thatched with winter hay and topped with tilting stone chimneys, their feeble smoke wisps vanishing in the wind. Animals, including reindeer and goats, are stabled inside residences so that their body heat warms the household. Modest but wickedly sharp palisade fences surround each home to keep out wolves and more unnatural interlopers.

The Folk: The Vos are hearty and stout, with fair skin, brown eyes, and dark hair. Women traditionally tie their waist-long hair into a single braid, while men wear their hair in a variety of styles, from wild, shorn temples, or a topknot. Men typically have facial hair. Vos clothing usually consists of hide shirts and trousers for men and long, layered dresses for women. Both genders wear furs when outdoors. Headwear consists of fur hats for men and shawls and kerchiefs for women. The furs are never dyed. Jewelry is rare, though many women have earrings made of antlers or bone. Snowshoes are almost always used when travelling in the wilderness.

The Vos are generally warm and good humored, but with each passing year of continual winter, their spirits have begun to grow dim. They are resolute in their determination to survive, and they disregard what they cannot change. They prize hospitality and socializing and are inherently suspicious of those who cannot enjoy a strong drink and a hearty laugh. Vos delight in eating, drinking, song, jokes, board games, and tests of might. Sweathouses, lodges where residents can relax amid thick steam, are a cornerstone of culture in Vos villages. Here, men and women alike gather to gossip and enjoy the therapeutic vapors. If the Vos have a weakness, it is their stubbornness and the slowness with which they are stirred to action. Dark streaks of cynicism mar the demeanors of many Vos, and this hopeless fatalism is often drowned in potent liquor.

The Law: Gregor Zolnik, the self-proclaimed boyar of Vorostokov, threatens to draw the entire domain into his grasp. In the past, a powerful warrior or wealth landowner governed each village in Vorostokov, ruling as he saw fit. The boyar organized the region in times of war and collected tribute on behalf of the king's distant court. Since the eternal winter settled over Vorostokov, the region has been in limbo, the settlements unable to establish contact with the monarchy. Zolnik, a master hunter and sadistic bully from the village of Vorostokov, has stepped forward and proclaimed himself the new boyar of the valley. To consolidate his power, Zolnik has gathered a boyarsky, a local band of warriors and thugs. He is now engaged in a brutal reign of terror intended to bring Vorostokov's settlements under his control.

As might be expected, Zolnik has met with stubborn resistance in some villages. His response is always swift and monstrous--the wholesale slaughter of the settlement's hunters and trappers. Starvation has caused more than one village to capitulate to Zolnik's demands, as the hunter offers the game of his huntsmen in exchange for loyalty. Slowly but surely, the boyar's reach is extending from village to village in the frozen valley.

Classes: barbarians, bards, fighters, rangers, and sorcerers

Recommended Skills: Heal, Lore, Perform

Recommended Feats: Back to the Wall, Endurance, Lunatic, Power Attack, Toughness, Weapon Focus (Greatsword)

Names:

-Vos Male Names: Anatoli, Barak, Baran, Basil, Boris, Dimas, Dmitri, Drago, Fyodr, Garan, Gregor, Karel, Kasimir, Igor, Ilya, Ivan, Josef, Leonid, Markov, Mikhail, Mischa, Nikoli, Orel, Pavel, Pavlov, Pyotr, Rodel, Sergei, Stefan, Victor, Vladimir, Yuri

-Vos Female Names: Chessa, Danica, Fiala, Galina, Jana, Kalina, Kara, Kira, Krista, Lena, Lenora, Lida, Mara, Marya, Marisha, Nadia, Natasha, Neva, Olga, Pavla, Petra, Pola, Raisa, Sonya, Tamara, Tanya

-Vos Surnames: Abelev, Alexandrei, Aznabaev, Bakhvalova, Barabanschikova, Basilevsky, Belikov, Beregovoi, Borzakovsky, Cherchesov, Chernyovskaya, Czartoryska, Demidenko, Dmytryk, Dorogoi, Dzhamgerchinov, Filischkin, Gavrilov, Gergiev, Golubkhov, Gretchaninov, Hvorostovsky, Ilyukhin, Kalinnikov, Kapustin, Kasparkova, Kozyrev, Lebedyenko, Lyapunov, Malenkov, Martinov, Mikhaylichenko, Nelyubova, Nikiforovic, Nizienko, Novakovsky, Oleneva, Ostrovsky, Pobedonostev, Potemkin, Protopopov, Raskolnikov, Rostropovich, Ryzhkov, Serafinowicz, Sidelnikov, Sokolov, Stoljarov, Svetlanov, Tchaikovskaya, Toporov, Zbruyev, Zhukov

Source: Birthright Campaign Setting, Ravenloft 3rd Edition Campaign Setting
« Last Edit: June 13, 2021, 08:01:09 PM by EO »

Bluebomber4evr: The Justice, not you, since 2002

Bluebomber4evr

  • Head DM, Developer and Ravenloft Trivia Guru/Community Council
  • Administrator
  • Dark Power
  • *
  • Posts: 20640
    • http://www.nwnravenloft.com
Nidala
« Reply #28 on: March 05, 2012, 02:50:25 AM »
Shadowlands Cluster

Nidala

Cultural Level: Medieval

Climate: Temperate

Terrain: Forests, Hills, Mountains, and Plains

Major Settlements: Touraine (20,200)

Population: 30,000

Languages: Nidalan

Religion: Belenus

Government: Theocratic Monarchy

Ruler: Elena Faith-hold, Knight Protector of Nidala

Currency: blaze (gp), flare (sp), flame (cp)

Resources: wheat, barley, oats, rye, potatoes, hogs, cattle, sheep, dairy, perch, salmon, crayfish, timber, silver, copper, iron, lead, limestone, salt, furniture.

Diplomacy: The Knight Protector discourages contact between her realm and other domains, reasoning that the corrupting influence of outsiders would only taint her subjects. Since Nidala is self-sufficient and somewhat remote, this has not been a problem in the past. Travelers who do find their way to Nidala are expected to adhere to Elena's decrees, an unlikely prospect since most outsiders are not even aware the laws exist. Thus, residents of other domains often find themselves on the way to Faith Hold's torture pits within days or even hours of their arrival in Nidala.

The Land: Nidala is a domain of breathtaking, rugged wilderness scoured clean of wickedness by the ruthless vigilance of the domain's Knight Protector. The Theospine Mountains run through the center of the realm, their snowcapped heights soaring up to touch cold, gray sky. Sparkling streams and rivers flow down either side of the range, teeming with freshwater fish and shellfish. To the east, the jagged crags descend to rolling foothills, where flocks of sheep graze serenely under the watchful gaze of shepherds. Lake Amenta huddles close to the southern reaches of the Theospines, its frigid waters supposedly concealing the gateway to a mystical kingdom. Farther to the east, sweeping grasslands and fertile farms stretch out beyond the foothills, eventually changing into a densely forested flood-plain. The Knight Protector's warriors patrol the eastern woods for predators, and lumberjacks work year-round without fear.

West of the Theospines, Nidala's landscape is much more savage and sinister. The peaks slope down toward rocky badlands, which are riddled with black, twisting caverns. Here the air is still and swollen with a palpable tension. As the barren hills descend into gloomy forests, the sense of dread heightens. The gnarled trees creak and sway regardless of the winds, making even seasoned woodsmen edgy. Snapping twigs and low growls betray the movements of stalking beasts, natural and otherwise.

Near the edge of the eastern foothills stands the bustling city of Touraine, smoke rising from its thousand little chimneys. Its buildings are charming and tidy, each built two stories tall with stone and timber and finished with creamy plaster. The gabled roofs are shingled in vermilion tiles, and windows are guarded with beautifully carved wooden shutters. Above the city, perched atop Mount Malcredo, glowers forbidding Faith Hold, castle of the Knight Protector. A churning thunderstorm rages perpetually above the keep, arcs of purple lightning periodically stretching out to strike the uppermost towers.

Overall, the climate in Nidala is cool and temperate, though winters can be extremely harsh.

The Folk: The Nidalans are lean folk blessed with strong limbs and commanding statures. They have smooth, fair skin that is frequently freckled or lightly tanned from working outdoors. A Nidalan's eyes are always an icy blue in color. Their straight hair is usually flaxen to dirty blond, but Nidalans with raven tresses are not unheard of. Men keep their hair trimmed short and grow their mustaches and beards out neatly to match. Women allow the hair to grow long, though rarely past the middle of the back. Clothing is rugged and functional, designed to allow the Nidalans to work easily and shrug off the chill air. Men wear loose shirts, vests, breeches, and high boots, while women don long dresses and aprons over blouses and pin their hair beneath stiff bonnets. Neutral colors such as black, white, and beige dominate Nidalan garb, though bright red accents are common. Jewelry is outlawed in Nidala, as the Knight Protector has decreed it vain and vulgar.

The Nidalans are grim folk exhausted and frustrated by the Knight Protector's endless moralistic decrees. Although they once enjoyed song, dance, and tragic plays, all such activities have been outlawed, leaving the Nidalans to pursue their livelihoods with a perceptible air of gloom. This is not to say that the Nidalans are utterly despondent at all times; rather, a vague, unshakable sense of loss clings to them, as if they feel profound regret. Family gatherings featuring elaborate feasts are central to Nidalan life, even if the atmosphere has been terse in recent years. Handicrafts are practiced throughout Nidala for recreation as well as profession, and many folk enjoy wood-carving in their spare time.

The Law: Elena Faith-hold, Knight Protector of Nidala, rules her realm through respect, order, and, above all, fear. She is a legendary holy warrior in the service of the sun god Belenus and takes her responsibilities to the faith extremely seriously. Unfortunately, the Nidalans have suffered mightily under her unwavering conviction and tenacity, and they pervert her name as "Elena Strangle-hold" in whispers.

Elena issues weekly Decrees of Faith, commandments and prohibitions that have slowly accumulated into a mountain of a moral code. To enforce her decrees, Elena relies on her knights and clerics, as well as an elaborate network of informants spread through the realm. Mayors officially govern Touraine and smaller settlements, gathering four times a year to discuss matters that affect the entire domain. Most Nidalans recognize these men for what they are: the eyes and ears of Elena.

Those who violate Elena's decrees are punished savagely. Public floggings and maimings are standard sentences, but those with the gall to speak against Elena or Belenus' church are dragged in chains to the infamous torture chambers of Faith Hold. Given this cruelty, Nidala would probably be on the edge of revolt if it were not for a legendary dragon named Banemaw. It is Elena's presence alone that keeps this eldritch wyrm at bay, though he has been known to slaughter rural villages beyond the Knight Protector's reach.

Classes: Clerics (of Belenus), fighters, rangers.

Recommended Skills: Antagonize, Influence, Lore

Recommended Crafts: armorsmithing, blacksmithing, carpentry, weaponsmithing

Recommended Professions: farmer, herdsman, lumberjack, miner

Recommended Feats: Power Attack, Skill Focus (Lore), Weapon Focus (longsword)

Names:

-Nidalan Male Names: Aberth, Adwen, Alcuin, Berngal, Bran, Cael, Cathbadh, Cobthach, Cu, Deaghadh, Donn-Ruadh, Dubhdaleithe, Eoban, Etgall, Findabair, Foilleán, Gillacomghain, Gorm-Shuileach, Gwythno, Iduthin, Istoreth, Keir, Kylan, Lachlan, Leith, Liobhan, Mac Da Tho, Maelchwn, Merddyn, Morgund, Muirchú, Natanleod, Nuadha, Oren, Rian, Robhartach, Rowan, Samthainn, Sgoith-Gleigeil, Suanach, Tuaigh, Tyrnon, Vran

-Nidalan Female Names: Ailne, Boudica, Briga, Daalny, Duineachta, Ethil, Finndealbh, Gwyna, Innogen, Keelta, Liath, Miluchradh, Modwenna, Moriath, Onuava, Rhyanidd, Sinna, Tiabhal, Tuag, Uchtdealb, Unna, Veldicca, Wenna

Sources: Islands of Terror, Ravenloft 3rd Edition Campaign Setting
« Last Edit: June 13, 2021, 08:07:16 PM by EO »

Bluebomber4evr: The Justice, not you, since 2002

EO

  • Assistant Head DM/Developer
  • Head DMs
  • Dark Power
  • ******
  • Posts: 19195
  • The one and only, the one everyone wants to be!
Souragne
« Reply #29 on: November 03, 2020, 01:45:21 PM »
Souragne

Cultural Level: Chivalric

Climate: Warm

Terrain: Forests and Swamps

Major Settlements: Marais d'Tarascon (300), Port d'Elhour (1,200).

Population: 3,100

Races: 99% Human, 1% Other

Languages: Souragnien

Religions: The Loa.

Government: Independent aristocratic settlements

Ruler: None.

Currency: gravestone (gp), fingerbone (sp), toothchip (cp)

Resources: rice, yams, sugarcane, cotton, catfish, crappie, shrimp, crayfish, spirits, salt

Diplomacy: Sailors who find their way to the Murky Sea regard Souragne as a hostile and unpleasant domain. Although the sugar and cotton grown here are highly valued in distant domains, merchants are wary of the sweltering climate, Maison d'Sablet's unseen horrors, and the peculiar ways of the Souragniens. The native nobility, for their part, strive to encourage trade with other domains. They hope to expand their influence into other realms and watch Port d'Elhour emerge as a vital harbor in the Land of Mists.

The Land: Souragne is a domain that swarms and slithers with life, a lush river delta choked with dark bayous. Called Maison d'Sablet by the Souragniens, the wooded swamp that covers most of the domain stretches out like a languid snake. The muggy air is thick with gray fog and buzzing insects. Pale green moss hangs heavy on the cypress trees, where raccoons and opossums clamber. The few folk who dwell in the bayou pole their wooden rafts through the fetid waters, keeping a wary eye out for alligators and more unnatural threats. At night, the swamps come alive with the trilling of frogs, crickets, and cicadas. The delta fans northward toward the Souragne's warm, shallow coastline along the Murky Sea. Near the center of the domain is Lake Noir, its waters slick with algae and choked with cattails.

Most settlements are in the east, where ground is slightly higher and flooding less severe. The domain's villages are cramped and sweltering, the gray stone edifices of their buildings looming over narrow, muddy streets. Balconies and gates of wrought iron adorn the two-story homes and shops, alongside stone carvings of snakes and dancing skeletons. The plantations of the nobility feature magnificent estates with lustrous white pillars and gloomy willow groves. The high water table prevents traditional burial in Souragne, so the dead are entombed in morbidly beautiful mausoleums. Unrelenting, oppressive heat and humidity mark the domain's weather. The autumn rainy season brings temperatures that are only slightly cooler than the norm.

The Folk: Souragniens are generally short in stature and slight of build, but their appearance otherwise exhibits remarkable variation. Their skin can range from milky pale to a deep coffee brown. Eye colors vary widely, from pale blue to hazel to nearly black. Hair is either straight or tightly curled and anywhere from auburn to raven black in color. Men keep their hair very short or shoulder length, with nobles preferring the latter, and shun facial hair. Women let their hair grow quite long, and while commoners don't mind wild and tangled tresses, noblewomen style their hair elaborately, pinning it up in delicate fashion. Among commoners, clothing is threadbare and humble; men wear a loose shirt and trousers, women a blouse and long skirt. Such garb is usually naturally colored rather than dyed. Nobles, on the other hand, go about in exquisite garments of vibrant hue. Men wear blousy shirts under jerkins, sashes, and breeches with high boots. Women wear revealing, ruffled dresses in pastel colors. Jewelry is common among the aristocracy, who love to show off their wealth through such baroque adornments.

The class divide in Souragne is deep and bloody. Property owners, no matter how humble their assets, are the elite, and all others must toil to serve them. Commoners are little better than slaves; they're exploited by the aristocracy until they collapse, then discarded. Among the nobles it is acceptable to savagely abuse commoners, even without reason. In villages, poor farmers rub shoulders with gamblers and streetwalkers, attempting to drown their miseries in vice. All Souragniens, regardless of class, tend to be earthy, passionate folk. They have little respect for academic knowledge, instead valuing cunning and strength of character.

Souragniens are also superstitious people, their beliefs revolving around natural spirits called loa, The loa are the embodiment of natural forces; chief among them is the Maiden of the Swamp, who represents Masion d'Sablet itself, and the Lord of the Dead. While numerous loa are revered, Souragniens truly fear the Lord of the Dead, who has the power to take the deceased as his own, raising them as zombies. Wild festivals throughout the year honor the loa and appease the Lord of the Dead in particular. Many customs in Souragne are believed to tap the power of the loa to attract success and romance or to strike one's rivals with misfortune.

The Law: Villages in Souragne are essentially autonomous, the nobles electing a lord mayor from among their ranks every two years. Precious little governance actually occurs, however; lord mayors merely act as voices for the aristocracy, who create and enforce laws in the domain to suit their needs. There are no standing militias in Souragnien villages, but young noblemen are expected to serve a term as village constables.

Although he may be only a mythical being, the Lord of the Dead is so deeply feared in Souragne that the folk follow customs intended to please him. The dead are not interred for four days following death, out of deference to the Lord of the Dead, who may choose to claim the corpse as his servant. Similarly, all arcane magic save Necromancy displeases him, and as such its practice is strictly forbidden among the Souragniens.

Classes: Druids, rangers, rogues, sorcerers and voodan are the most common, but any class can find its way in Souragne. Voodan are the primary religious casters but clerics also worship the Loa pantheon.

Recommended Skills: Discipline, Lore, Perform

Recommended Feats: Exotic Weapon Proficiency,  Spell Focus (Necromancy), Voice of Wrath, Weapon Focus (rapier, sickle).

Names:

-Souragnian Male Names: Alphonse, André, Antoine, Anton, Bernard, Bertrand, Bruno, Claude, Colin, Donatien, Étienne, Florian, François, Frederic, Gaston, Georges, Gerard, Gilles, Guy, Henri, Hervé, Hubert, Jacques, Jean, Jean Pierre, Jean-Claude, Jean-Francois, Jean-Paul, Jerald, Jordi, Laurent, Louis, Luc, Lucien, Marcus, Mathieu, Michel, Nazaris, Olivier, Pascal, Phillippe, Pierre, Pierot, Raoul, Remy, Renard, René, Serge, Thibault, Thierry, Tomas, Valère, Vardain

-Souragnian Female Names: Adélaïde, Adéle, Adrienne, Aimée, Amélie, Antoinette, Avril, Bernadette, Blaise, Brigitte, Camille, Celeste, Chantal, Charlotte, Clarisse, Claudette, Corinne, Danielle, Désirée, Dominique, Éloise, Emmanuelle, Evelyne, Fiora, Francoise, Genevieve, Giselle, Henrietta, Henriette, Hillaire, Isabelle, Jacqueline, Jeanne, Joan, Joséphine, Josette, Karine, Katha, Lillin, Louise, Manon, Marguerite, Marie, Marie-Laure, Mirielle, Monique, Nadine, Nathalie, Nichole, Regine, Renée, Rolande, Sabine, Solange, Sophie, Sylvie, Tatienne, Teresa, Therese, Valerie, Vivienne, Yvonne, Zoé

-Souragnian Surnames: Alard, Anciaux, Arguelles, Barbier, Bascolm, Baudelaire, Beauregard, Bordeaux, Bordell, Bouchet, Brosseau, Camus, Carbonneau, Chaboteaux, Chevalier, Clemenceau, Clouseau, Coulette, d'Aubec, d'Espivant, d'Cann, Daumier, De La Brosse, De La Chaize, De Lavergne, De Leon, De Masse, De Thibault, Delaroux, Deneuve, Deschamps, Destine, Du Plat, Dupin, Durand, Favreau, Flaubert, Foucault, Garnier, Gatteux, Gauthier, Gillette, Goulet, Gremin, Grignon, Jean-Aubry, Jeune, Labourdette, Lacroix, Lambert, Laporte, Larroquette, Laurier, Lavigne, Le Jeune, Le Marquand, Le Nôtre, L'Heureux, Levi, Marceau, Martineau, Moreau, Pepin, Pichot, Poiret, Quilleboeuf, Renault, Roche, Simoneau, Soulette, Thibedeaux, Tourette, Verret, Voltaire

Sources: Ravenloft 3rd Edition Campaign Setting, Domains of Dread, Night of the Living Dead, Ravenloft Monstrous Compendium III
« Last Edit: June 13, 2021, 08:26:53 PM by EO »

Dread

  • Community Council
  • Dark Power
  • ******
  • Posts: 8914
I'Cath
« Reply #30 on: May 31, 2021, 06:46:56 AM »
I'Cath

Cultural Level: Medieval

Climate: Temperate

Terrain: Urban Sprawl

Major Settlements: The City of I'Cath (10,000)

Population: 10,000

Races: 99% Human, 1% Other

Languages: High Shou

Religions: The Celestial Bureaucracy (rare)

Government: Autocratic Despotism

Ruler: Queen Tsien Chiang

Currencies: no currency; trade conducted through barter in the waking world; no need for it in the dreaming world

Resources: None. Those who find themselves in the waking city and remain risk starvation, unless they raid the homes of those still sleeping.

Diplomacy: None. The vast majority in I'Cath, including its ruler, are asleep and have little interest in interaction with the waking world. Additionally, it is an Island of Terror, cut off from the Core.

The Folk and the City: Those who live in I'Cath are descended from the Shou peoples of Kara-Tur. They typically have bronze, sandy complexions, black hair, and broad flat facial features. Their language, High Shou, utilizes the Draconic alphabet and yet is its own language separate from the tongue of wyrms. It is said that I'Cath in times past was a radiant center for learning and art, though now those who live in the city -- those who dream, that is -- know only toil and hardship. and they can be afforded no distractions from that. While a part of this collective dream, the people of I'Cath do not eat, drink, or sleep. All time is spent working.

When the inhabitants of I'Cath fall asleep, they enter an alternate version of the city they call home—a city dreamed into being by the Queen, through the power of the Nightingale Bell. In time, these poor souls can’t remember which version is the real I'Cath and which one is the dream. In the physical world, I'Cath's surreal, knotted streets echo with their emptiness. Within spare, meandering row houses, the majority of the populace slump against walls or sprawl against each other where they fell. These people lie trapped within a collective dream world created by the city’s ruler, Tsien Chiang. Within this shared dream they labor ceaselessly, ever striving to create the impossible, perfect city of a perfectionist mastermind.

The streets and row-homes of I'Cath change nightly, making navigation next to impossible. The city has a single exit, the Four Trees Gate, but few know how to reach it. What few who do manage to escape I'Cath and the dream that envelops its people frequently elect to pass through the gate when they find it and take their chances with the Mists that surround the massive, sprawling, labyrinthine city. Often do they forget to take care of themselves, neglecting to eat or drink; after all, whilst they dreamt, they did not need to. They find themselves troubled by perfectly mundane nightmares of their captivity in Tsien Chiang's dream-world, believing that they have been reclaimed by that which they had escaped. Some even tend towards solipsism, believing that it is impossible for them to know for certain that they are awake.

The Law: Autocratic Despotism.

Within the dream-city of I'Cath, the Queen Tsien Chiang rules a golden vision of the city—a place of ultimate beauty and efficiency where all things move according to her design. For her, it is near perfection. For her people, it is a nightmare of inescapable drudgery from which death is the only escape. The dream-city's identical, even streets sprawl across a broad hill, atop which rises a glorious palace Tsien Chiang shares with her four perfect daughters. Day or night, the streets are filled with people ever toiling to perfect the buildings, reshape the gardens, and undo the work of the previous days and weeks in favor of new designs. Within the dream, there is no respite, nor need for sleeping, eating, or for attending to any other concerns. They know only their work and the glory of Tsien Chiang.

In the waking world, the truth of I'Cath is starkly apparent. Rows of decrepit, moldy homes merge to line endless, coiling avenues. The streets wind and double back, but eventually climb the rise at the city’s center, where the infamous Palace of Bones and the gold-scaled Ping'On Tower loom. By day, the streets are largely empty, except for those few desperate residents of I'Cath who have yet to succumb to the domain’s dream. They rush through their days, scavenging what they can in hopes of enduring the coming night. At night, Tsien Chiang's chiang-shi and other servants prowl the streets.

Classes: Rogues number high among those who have escaped from I'Cath, owing to their survival skills and ability to scavenge. In spite of the endless toil demanded by its ruler, the spark of creativity has not been wholly stamped out in I'Cath; for this reason, you still see Bards on occasion. Though rare, there are a few clerics serving the Celestial Bureaucracy. Sorcerers and wizards are not uncommon either, particularly evokers with an interest in the elements.

Recommended Skills: Hide, Move Silently, Search

Recommended Feats: Back to the Wall, Courage, Dead Man Walking, Endurance, Stealthy

Names:

-I'Cath Male Names: An, Chen, Chi, Fai, Jiang, Jun, Lian, Long, Meng, On, Shan, Shui, Wen

-I'Cath Female Names: Bai, Chao, Jia, Lei, Mei, Qiao, Shui, Tai

-I'Cath Surnames: Chien, Huang, Kao, Kung, Lao, Ling, Mei, Pin, Shin, Sum, Tan, Wan

Questions/Considerations for Characters from I'Cath:

How did you escape I’Cath? How long were you awake?

How did you evade or distract the chiang-shi and the spirits that serve the Queen? Did you find or lose something during your wandering? Do you bear a mark or scar from the experience?

Whom did you leave behind in I’Cath? Why didn’t they go with you? Did you try to forget about them? Is it your hope to one day return to I’Cath for them?

Sources: Van Richten's Guide to Ravenloft, 5th Ed., Races of Faerûn, p. 108., 2003, 3rd Ed.
« Last Edit: June 13, 2021, 08:30:56 PM by EO »

EO

  • Assistant Head DM/Developer
  • Head DMs
  • Dark Power
  • ******
  • Posts: 19195
  • The one and only, the one everyone wants to be!
Rokushima Taiyoo
« Reply #31 on: June 05, 2021, 10:41:52 PM »
Rokushima Taiyoo

Cultural Level: Dark Age

Climate: Temperate

Terrain: Forests, Hills and Mountains

Major Settlements: Beikoku (1,800), Chuugoka (3,100), Eikoku (2,300), Roshiya (2,500).

Population: 19,300

Races: 99% Human, 1% Other

Languages: Rokuma

Religions: The Kami.

Government: Feudal hereditary aristocracy

Ruler: Four shujin.

Currency: chrysanthemum (gp), water lily (sp), cherry blossom (cp)

Resources: rice, beans, tea, mulberries, citrus, herring, mackerel, tuna, sardines, salmon, crabs, squid, seaweed, beer, silver, copper, iron, lead, silk

Diplomacy: Rokushima Taiyoo has long been an isolated domain embroiled in its own exhausting conflicts and unaware of the wider world beyond its shores. Recent contact with Dementlieuse and Darkonian sailors has not encouraged the Rokuans, who have found these outsiders brutish and disrespectful. Nonetheless, the presence of such travelers may prove to be a wild card in the struggle between the shujin. The brothers have taken notice of these foreign strangers and are even now scheming of ways to take advantage of their boorish naivete and tantalizing weapons.

The Land: Rokushima Táiyoo, also known as the Six Islands of the Sun, is a lush archipelago that rises impossibly from the surrounding Poison Sea. The domain's sobriquet might seem to be a misnomer, as there are only four isles. The Rokuma, however, assert that the two vanished islands sank into the ocean when their shujin, or local lords, were killed. The remaining isles surround the glassy surface of the Great Mirror Lake, which is fed by clear mountain springs. The waters of the lake rush between the islands, cascading down jagged slopes of coral and into the venomous depths of the Poison Sea. The roiling Nightmare Mists shroud the lake's western outlet to the sea, and ships voyaging into the dread vapors never emerge. The snowcapped peak of Mount Frost soars high above the surrounding islands, its slopes purportedly riddled with corrupted shrines and caches of plundered treasure. The island landscape is rugged and picturesque, blanketed by damp evergreen forests, arching wood bridges, and misty waterfalls.

Structures in Rokushima Táiyoo are elegant and possess a distinct aesthetic style. Wood is used almost exclusively in construction, fitted together without nails. Decorative gables, eaves, and screens are commonplace. The walls and sliding doors are often made of thin paper on a wooden frame, allowing for easy repairs following the domain's vicious storms and earthquakes. The shujin, however, dwell in enormous stone castles with multiple tiers climbing up to touch the sun. Serene shrines both magnificent and humble dot the islands; located on sites of natural beauty and power, they are identifiable by the sacred torii gates. The weather in the domain is fierce and merciless. Summers are oppressive and muggy, autumns beset by rampaging typhoons. Winters are brutally cold, burying the domain under endless snow. Springtime is short but comparatively pleasant, a time when the islands are covered in pale flower blossoms.

The Folk: The Rokuma are slight in stature but blessed with trim builds and physical grace. Their skin tone varies from creamy white to ruddy brown, usually with a sallow tinge. Eye color tends to be dark, ranging from hazel to midnight black. Rokuma hair is straight, sleek, and jet-black. Men and women both grow their hair long, arranging it in elaborate fashion with wooden pins, though commoner men sometimes prefer a shorter style. Men are clean shaven, regarding facial hair as barbarous. Women and men alike wear widesleeved robes belted at the waist with a sash over a long shirt or shift. Men also don loose trousers or wrapped leggings. Soft slippers or wooden sandals are the customary footwear. Male commoners are fond of wide straw hats to keep off the sun and snow. Black and soft pastels are favored colors in clothing.

The Rokuma are reserved and enigmatic folk, ascribing great value to social decorum and aesthetics. They prize beauty and harmony, whether in the natural world or in their relationships. They are reverent toward the kami, the spirits that are believed to dwell in all things, and worship at breathtaking natural shrines. The elderly are given great respect, and proper etiquette is imperative even among the poorest commoners.

The Rokuma have a deep respect for the warrior's skill with sword and bow. They see beauty in all of life's pursuits and feel secure in their place in the natural order. The constant warring between the island shujin, however, has created an atmosphere of terror in the domain's villages. The bloody conflict has cast a fearful shadow over the Rokuma, who endure harassment and brutality from the prideful samurai of their masters.

The Law: Each of Rokushima Taiyoo's four islands is ruled by a shujin, a feudal warlord with numerous lesser noble warriors under his vassalage. The domain's shujin are all brothers, endlessly bickering over the birthright each feels was denied him by a deceased father. Although each shujin is ostensibly responsible for overseeing his island realm, the brothers are completely obsessed with breaking one another's power. Their slow, smoldering war wreaks havoc on the lives of their subjects. Their samurai clash openly in the streets, heedless of the commoners who are caught in the conflict. Ninja clans slink through the shadows, carrying out sabotage and assassinations. Periodically, the struggle explodes into outright warfare as the forces of each brother slaughter one another in gruesome battles. In most villages, there is no longer any civic order at all.

In short, the greed and pride of the shujin is literally tearing the Six Islands of the Sun apart. The Rokuans try to carry on with their lives, hoping that adherence to tradition will carry them through the dark times. Many folk, however, have turned to shrewd brigands called yakuza to protect them from their own nobility.

Classes: Druids, fighters, monks, rogues, wizards are the most common classes.

Recommended Skills: Influence, Lore, Perform.

Recommended Feats: Expertise (plus derivatives), Improved Unarmed Strike (plus derivatives), Two-Weapon Fighting (plus derivatives), Weapon Focus (longsword).

Names:

-Rokuma Male Names: Akahito, Akira, Arimoto, Atasuke, Benjiro, Bussho, Chojiro, Chomei, Daisetsu, Daisuke, Ebizo, Eichi, Eiji, Eisuke, Fujimaro, Fukusaburu, Fumihiko, Genichi, Genjo, Gennosuke, Goemon, Goro, Hachemon, Hajime, Hayato, Heihachiro, Hideki, Hideo, Hideyoshi, Hikaru, Hiroshi, Ichiro, Iwao, Jin, Jun, Kadonomaro, Katsuhiko, Kazuma, Kei, Ken, Kenji, Kenshin, Makoto, Masaharu, Matsuo, Minoru, Miyazaki, Nobuo, Noriaki, Oda, Ryo, Ryu, Sanjiro, Sojuro, Sotaro, Takahashi, Takeshi, Taro, Tetsuo, Tetsuya, Tokugawa, Toru, Yajirobei, Yamato, Yoshi, Yoshihiro, Yoshimitsu, Yuji, Yukio, Yusuke

-Rokuma Female Names: Ai, Ami, Ayame, Eiko, Emiko, Eri, Fujiko, Hana, Haruko, Hatsuyo, Hikaru, Hisako, Hitomi, Inoue, Izumi, Juri, Kaede, Kaori, Kaoru, Katsumi, Keiko, Mae, Maki, Megumi, Midori, Misako, Misato, Momoko, Naoko, Natsumi, Noriko, Reiko, Riku, Risa, Rumiko, Ryoko, Sakura, Shiori, Suzuko, Tomoe, Yoko, Yuki, Yumi, Yuriko

-Rokuma Surnames: Akamatsu, Akiyama, Arakawa, Ashikaga, Chikanatsu, Daishi, Endo, Fuchida, Fujimoto, Fukayama, Funaki, Genji, Hama, Harada, Hideki, Hiro, Honda, Ichiro, Ikeda, Imagawa, Inoguchi, Ishibashi, Ishikawa, Ito, Kasahara, Kato, Katsuhika, Kawakami, Kobayashi, Kodama, Koga, Kojima, Kurosawa, Kuwabara, Matsuda, Matsumoto, Matsuya, Mitsui, Miyagi, Miyamoto, Muraoka, Nagasawa, Nakatoni, Narato, Nishimoto, Nobunaga, Nomura, Okada, Okamura, Otomo, Oyama, Saito, Sakai, Sakamoto, Sano, Sasaki, Sato, Shimamura, Suzuki, Takagawa, Takahashi, Takara, Takeda, Tanaka, Tsuda, Uchida, Ueda, Watanabe, Yamada, Yamaguchi, Yamamoto, Yoshida

Sources: Ravenloft 3rd Edition Campaign Setting
« Last Edit: June 13, 2021, 08:34:11 PM by EO »

EO

  • Assistant Head DM/Developer
  • Head DMs
  • Dark Power
  • ******
  • Posts: 19195
  • The one and only, the one everyone wants to be!
G'Henna
« Reply #32 on: June 05, 2021, 10:57:54 PM »
G'Henna

Cultural Level: Classical

Climate: Temperate

Terrain: Hills, Plains, and Mountains

Major Settlements: Zhukar (10,100).

Population: 19,500

Races: 98% Human, 2% Other

Languages: Balok,* Falkovnian

Religions: Zhakata*.

Government: Theocracy

Ruler: Yagno Petrovna.

Currency: stoneclaw (gp), irontusk (sp), bonefang (cp)

Resources: wheat, corn, oats, turnips, potatoes, sheep, goats, cattle, wine, beer, iron, copper, lead, iron goods

Diplomacy: G'Henna has struggled to maintain contact with the realms of the Core in the hope that commerce will bring desperately needed food to the domain. Most merchants prefer to leave the domain to its fanatical clerics, however; the land produces few resources that cannot be obtained in more hospitable lands. Petrovna cares nothing for his realm's standing among outsiders. His only concerns are to ensure that Zhakata is properly venerated and to maintain order within G'Henna; the Inquisition hastily removes any foreigners who interfere with either task.

The Land: G'Henna is a bleak, windbeaten wasteland, a domain where hunger and hardship are ways of life. Legend states that the rampages of the beast-god Zhakata the Devourer wreaked havoc on the once fertile land.

Constant, brutal gales blow across G'Henna's chill plains, bending the stunted grasses and brown shrubs. The rocky, dry soil is poor for both farming and grazing; herds of emaciated cattle and goats roam the wastes forlornly. Craggy uplands rise up like broken teeth throughout the domain, casting gray shadows across the land. The domain is covered with desolate stretches of cold desert, salt flats, and fields of fine, windblown ash. Savage windstorms scream out of the wastes, burning the skin and driving even stalwart herdsmen to safety. The silty, brackish waters of the Eel's Flow and Drogach Rivers meander through the badlands, providing little nourishment to the surrounding farmsteads.

Zhukar is G'Henna's solitary city, and its fearful populace is ruled by starvation and miserable submission. The grim buildings are constructed of massive stone blocks roughly hewn and pale dun in color. Everywhere are carvings of monstrous stone faces bristling with horns and tusks. Colossal pillars and intricate mosaics of polished bone adorn the grander buildings. Beyond the city, many G'Hennans dwell in round tents of ragged hide, which can be easily packed up and moved when folk must search for better grazing grounds. Although chill, G'Henna's climate is temperate overall. Its winters, however, are unforgiving. Wind temperatures drop cold enough to crack stone, and the muddy rivers freeze completely through.

The Folk: G'Hennans are lean and gaunt, their features sunken. Their skin is fair, though often with a faint sallow, ruddy, or dusky tone. Raw windburns commonly afflict those who dwell on the plains. G'Hennans' eyes are always exceptionally dark and often black as midnight. Their straight hair is a drab gray-brown or flat black in color. Men keep their hair short and slicked back and wear long, closely trimmed sideburns. Mustaches are not uncommon, but all married men wear a beard, which is waxed stiffly into a long braid. Women grow their hair to a moderate length, pinning it up under thin shawls. G'Hennan clothing is humble and often drab. Men wear blousy white shirts, vests with stiff collars, wide trousers, and short boots. Older men also wrap themselves in long, woolen robes and don small cloth caps. Women wear long dresses with wide hems and high collars, usually over baggy pantaloons.

Those who must survive on the bitter wastelands don long, thick coats and round fur hats. Clothing is always neutral in color: black, white, beige or brown. Jewelry is rarely seen except among Zhakata's clerics, who wear grisly ornaments crafted of human bone and teeth.

G'Hennans live in fear of Zhakata the Destroyer, a ruthless beast-god that exists only to annihilate whatever they toil to produce. All aspects of life in G'Henna are shaped around endless supplication of Zhakata. This constant devotion wears visibly on the G'Hennans. Grim and humorless, they have neither the time nor the inclination to savor pleasures such as dance or song. The horrors of starvation and the bottomless cruelty of Zhakata's clerics have long ago broken the spirits of most folk. Despite this, they have many sacred traditions, which are adhered to with solemn strictness. Mealtimes are hallowed events, and families gather dutifully, squatting on woven carpets at a low table, to partake of the meager fare. One of the most sacred heirlooms a family can possess is the guesting cup, a chalice made from the skull of an ancestor who was martyred by starvation.

The Law: Yagno Petrovna, Prophet of Zhakata, rules G'Henna from Zhukar, his divine word regarded as the supreme law of the land. Petrovna is a passionate zealot blessed with feverish visions of the Destroyer.

Three times a week, he preaches of Zhakata's boundless fury before the city's assembled throngs, working himself into a roaring fit of religious fervor. Petrovna sits atop the mammoth religious hierarchy of Zhakata's church, guiding it as the living voice of the Destroyer. There is no authority in G'Henna save that of the church. Clad in their distinctive vestments of scarlet and orange, clerics and holy warriors perform all military and civic duties. Petrovna also has a secret order of cleric enforcers known as the Inquisition. Unlike most of the church hierarchy, they operate from the shadows, vigilant for heresy and dissidence.

Zhakata is a feral, destructive god who eagerly tears down whatever the G'Hennans build and devours whatever they produce. To placate him, the G'Hennans are expected to donate all the food they produce directly to the church, which receives the offerings in a sunrise ceremony known as Zhakata's Taking. Whatever food remains by sunset is returned to the people as Zhakata's Dole. Fasting is a sacred sacrifice in G'Henna, and the Inquisition harshly punishes black market dealings in foodstuffs. The worship of any gods but Zhakata is forbidden, as is the practice of arcane magic. Once a week, Petrovna performs a horrifying miracle, transforming a criminal into a deformed abomination as a sacrifice to Zhakata. The only persistent hostilities the church encounters are from the barbaric bandits who dwell deep in the hinterlands. Hatefully atheistic, these raiders conduct a clandestine war of attrition against the church and Petrovna. Little is known of their cunning and shadowy leader, who is simply called the Jackal.

Classes: Barbarians, clerics, fighters, rogues are the most common classes. Clerics must worship Zhakata.

Recommended Skills: Antagonize, Influence, Lore.

Recommended Feats: Endurance, Improved Critical, Skill Focus (Lore), Toughness, Weapon Focus (whip).

Sources: Ravenloft 3rd Edition Campaign Setting, Circle of Darkness, Domains of Dread
« Last Edit: June 13, 2021, 08:35:55 PM by EO »

EO

  • Assistant Head DM/Developer
  • Head DMs
  • Dark Power
  • ******
  • Posts: 19195
  • The one and only, the one everyone wants to be!
Odiare
« Reply #33 on: June 05, 2021, 11:13:39 PM »
Odiare

Cultural Level: Medieval, though there are remnants of a Renaissance culture

Climate: Temperate

Terrain: Settled Area (Village)

Major Settlements: Odiare (fewer than 100).

Population: Fewer than 100.

Races: 100% Human

Languages: Odiarian (Gothic Earth Italian)

Religions: None.

Government: Informal commonwealth

Ruler: Rudolfo and Giselle Velutto.

Currency: none. Scattered silver currency can be found in Odiare, but the citizens have no use for hard coin and see little value in such baubles.

Resources: wheat, corn, potatoes, chestnuts, almonds, olives

Diplomacy: Odiare is a secluded and lonely village where many months often pass before outsiders wander into its quiet streets. The Odiarans are friendly to travelers, but their demeanor is tinged with apprehension. Indeed, Odiarans urge such outsiders to leave the village as soon as possible; they fear that Maligno will slay any newcomers he perceives as a threat to the children.

The Land: Odiare consists of a solitary, foggy village where the memories of childhood horrors are still fresh in the minds of the populace. The town's narrow streets are paved in smooth cobblestones and are blessedly free of waste, mud, and other detritus. The humble homes and shops are tidy two-story structures built of soft stone brick, plastered, and painted white or cream. The shallow, gabled roofs are shingled with dusky red-orange tiles. Many of the village's structures are in a sorry state, however. Roofs are marred by gaping holes, plaster crumbles away in chunks, and shattered glass hangs limply in window frames. The Odiarans labor tirelessly to maintain the buildings as best they can. The Secolo Theater - once gutted by fire - has recently been rebuilt for use as a village meeting house. Nearby, a bronze statue of a nameless woman tops a fountain in the village square, the mournful figure clutching a broken doll to her chest. Hidden between the buildings are a handful of stunted gardens, the only source of food for the Odiarans. Overhead, the sun traces a low, lazy path through the hazy sky for a mere six hours each day. The long nights, meanwhile, are starless and chill; an eerie stillness settles over the village, marked only rarely by the distant echoes of laughing children. The climate is moderate in the village, with mild summers and cool, wet winters.

The Folk: As a group, the Odiarans are young. Save for a demented, elderly toymaker, no villagers are over the age of thirty, and a few of the young adult couples have infants or toddlers of their own. They are trim and lean folk, if a bit undernourished. Their skin ranges from fair to medium olive-tan, often with a ruddy or sallow tinge. Eye color varies widely, from pale green to deep brown.  Their straight or finely curled hair ranges from dark blond to raven black, though darker hues are more common. Males keep their hair short and styled back, with young men always going about clean shaven. Females grow their hair to just below the shoulder. Odiaran clothing is humble and often threadbare from years of wear. The boys and men wear loose shirts, breeches, and high socks. Women and girls wear long, blousy dresses, tying their hair back with wide ribbons. Bright colors are rare in Odiaran garb, with most clothing appearing in neutral tones or washed-out hues of red, orange, and yellow.

The Odiarans are genial and considerate folk prizing simple values such as cooperation, sharing, and compassion. Although they are diligent and hard working, they also have an enduring affection for performance, including music, dance, and theater. Honesty comes easy to them, but a sheltered life in their strange village has made them more than a little naive. Their only fear is Maligno, Odiare's persistent bogeyman. According to legend, Maligno is a wooden puppet that skulks in the village's shadows, gleefully watching the Odiarans from hidden crannies. Maligno loves children first and foremost, but unfortunately his affection is twisted and malicious. The Odiarans believe it was Maligno who massacred the adults of the village nearly twenty years ago, aided by an army of malevolent toys. Although the little marionette has not been sighted for some time, many older Odiarans are terrified that he will return for them soon. Maligno's creator, an old toymaker named Guiseppe, still dwells in Odiare, laboring at his workbench in the depths of bleary madness.

The Law: The Odiarans conduct themselves in a remarkably peaceful and orderly manner. The oldest villagers have authority by virtue of their wisdom and experience; other Odiarans obey their requests unhesitatingly. Most Odiarans respect in particular the words of Rudolfo and Giselle Velutto, the village's eldest inhabitants at twenty-three and twenty-seven respectively. Early morning town meetings serve as a focal point for organizing the various tasks for the day. Chores are doled out according to each individual's skills and strengths. Gardens must be tended, buildings must be repaired and maintained, and numerous tools and everyday items must be crafted by hand. Older citizens teach the young the fundamental skills and trades that are vital to the village's continued survival. Although any Odiaran is free to leave the village and settle elsewhere, those who choose the Mists over Odiare are considered reckless and irresponsible.

Classes: Bards, fighters and rogues. Due to the nature of the land, characters native to Odiare lack formal schooling and as such classes such as cleric and wizard are out of their reach; rangers, barbarians and druids cannot hail from such a civilized setting. Characters must be under the age of twenty five.

Recommended Skills: Heal, Influence, Perform, Search.

Recommended Feats: Courage, Dodge, Iron Will, Weapon Focus (dagger).

Names: Italian names and surnames can be used for Odiare.

Sources: Ravenloft 3rd Edition Campaign Setting, Domains of Dread, The Created
« Last Edit: June 13, 2021, 08:37:17 PM by EO »

EO

  • Assistant Head DM/Developer
  • Head DMs
  • Dark Power
  • ******
  • Posts: 19195
  • The one and only, the one everyone wants to be!
Sri Raji
« Reply #34 on: June 05, 2021, 11:29:46 PM »
The Verdurous Lands

Sri Raji

Cultural Level: Classical

Climate: Warm

Terrain: Forests, Hills, and Mountains

Major Settlements: Muladi (8,200), Pakat (3,500), Tvashti (2,100).

Population: 27,300

Languages: Rajian

Religion: Rajian Pantheon

Government: Theocratic and aristocratic monarchy

Ruler: Maharaja Arijani

Currency: soma-drop (gp), lotus-flower (sp), rice-seed (cp)

Resources: rice, tea, cotton, jute, coconuts, tobacco, peanuts, spices, rubber, cattle, goats, timber, iron, gems, cloth.

Diplomacy: Sri Raji trades sporadically with numerous distant domains, though exchanges have always been marked by awkward cultural differences. Contact with other lands continues to increase, however. Just as Rajian explorers have pushed into the neighboring Wildlands and more far-flung realms, travelers from the Core arrive seeking Sri Raji's exotic goods. It remains to be seen when the Maharaja will turn his awful attention to these outsiders.

The Land: Sri Raji is a land of tropical forests and crumbling ruins where the people live according to traditions as old as time and cower in fear from their dread Maharaja. Enormous hardwoods tower around travelers in the forests, the limbs heavy with vines, mosses, and orchids. Green dampness permeates everything, as heavy rains batter the forests each night. The thickets echo with the cacophony of animal life, from the buzzing of parasitic insects to the shrieks of monkeys to the growls of prowling tigers. Ancient temples and shrines peek through the verdant shroud in places, hinting at forgotten secrets. To the northwest, the Yahasha Mountains climb toward white wisps of mist, as lush as the surrounding lowlands. Broad, muddy rivers meander down from the mountains, their banks swarming with listless crocodiles. Eminent among these waterways is the sacred Damuhm River, which flows from legendary Bahru, the Accursed City. Beyond Mount Yamatali, the highest peak in the Yahashas, the land plunges away into the forsaken, fog-bound waters of Saragoss.

Sri Raji's cities are walled bastions of civilization surrounded by vast rice fields. Within the city gates, throngs of filthy beggars swarm everywhere, clamoring for a single coin. The muddy streets are strewn with diseased corpses and the dung of buffalo and elephants. The contrast with the city's spectacular architecture is striking. The blocky buildings are constructed of stone brick and finished with plaster, which is often painted with colorful trim. Slender columns, delicate latticework, and colorful awnings adorn even the humblest homes and shops. The grandest structures are breathtaking in their beauty, with walls of polished stone, imposing towers, and friezes depicting famous myths.

The Folk: Rajians are lithe people short in stature but blessed with trim builds. Their skin tone is dark, ranging from a medium olive-tan to deep chocolate brown. Eye color is almost always dark brown, though rare individuals with pale gray or green eyes are sometimes seen. Rajian hair is straight and always black, though its sheen can be flat or glossy. Men cut their hair short, regarding long hair as barbaric. Women, however, grow their hair throughout their lives, pulling it back and braiding it into a single lock.

It is acceptable for men to wear neat mustaches or beards or to be clean shaven, as suits their taste. Clothing is made of light cotton dyed with vibrant colors of every hue. Men wear loose shirts and wrapped leggings, often covered with a long coat, and don cloth caps or turbans. Women traditionally wear a sari, a single swatch of cloth wrapped around the body and worn over the shoulder, and cover their heads with a shawl when going about in public. Sandals or soft slippers are the customary footwear. Jewelry is common, particularly among women, who also paint their eyes and lips with luscious pigments and stain their hands with henna.

Rajians respect tradition and religious conviction above all else, perhaps blindly so. Since the ancient customs have proven their worth, the  Rajians see little reason to give them up. Nonetheless, they are practical people, and have equal admiration for battle prowess, artistic talent, and scientific ingenuity. The illustrious University of Tvashti encourages the latter trait; within its libraries and temples, the wisest scholars study all facets of technology and the natural world.

Most traditions in Sri Raji are rooted in a complex, cyclical view of the cosmos. The Rajian gods are countless and interrelated, with one deity often regarded as a manifestation of another. The gods require continuous prayer and sacrifice, which the Rajians gladly give. Ritual hymns, chants, and dances are also vital, while sects with more philosophical bents have given rise to a strong monastic tradition. A central tenet of Rajian culture is reincarnation, a constant cycle of rebirth that comprises all living creatures. This concept is entwined with the domain's rigid caste system, such that fulfilling one's dharma, or proper role, in this life ensures that one is born into a higher caste in the next.

The Law: The terrible Maharaja Arijani rules from his palace Mahakala in the Accursed City of Bahru. Arijani is actually the high priest of Kali, the Black Mother, though none dares object to his self-proclaimed title of Maharaja. In truth, though Arijani's shadow falls darkly over Sri Raji, he is a reclusive ruler. Each day a single Rajian is chosen as a sacrifice to Kali; that person then journeys to Bahru on an albino elephant, never to be seen again. Apart from this horrific practice, the Maharaja demands little from his subjects, though his cleric spies are everywhere. Nobles and clerics of the Rajian gods control most aspects of society.

Although the clerics are of higher station, the nobles perform the actual tasks of governance. They levy taxes, control trade, and organize city militias, though most nobles also have their own private armies.

The caste system is a critical pillar of Rajian culture, serving as a strong organizing principle and a bulwark against unrest. Although there are numerous castes, they are divisible into four primary groups: brahmin (priests), kshatriya (nobles and soldiers), vaishya (merchants and craftsmen), and shudra (farmers). Rajians are born into a caste and remain in it throughout their lives. Those of lower castes are expected to obey and respect their betters, but there is no expectation for highborn individuals to treat the lower castes fairly or even humanely.

Classes: Bards, clerics, fighters, monks, rogues, wizards are the most common classes.

Recommended Skills: Animal Empathy, Influence, Lore, Perform, Sleight of Hand

Recommended Feats: Expertise, Improved Expertise, Improved Unarmed Strike, Thug, Voice of Wrath, Weapon Focus (shortbow, scimitar)

Names: Indian-themed names can be used for Sri Raji characters.

Source: Ravenloft 3rd Edition Campaign Setting, Web of Illusion, Legends and Lore, Realm of Terror Boxed Set
« Last Edit: June 13, 2021, 08:41:13 PM by EO »

EO

  • Assistant Head DM/Developer
  • Head DMs
  • Dark Power
  • ******
  • Posts: 19195
  • The one and only, the one everyone wants to be!
Paridon
« Reply #35 on: June 05, 2021, 11:57:22 PM »
Zherisia

Paridon

Cultural Level: Renaissance

Climate: Temperate

Terrain: Settled Area

Major Settlements: Paridon (11,600)

Population: 11,600

Races: Humans 99%, Other 1%.

Languages: Zherisian

Religion: Divinity of Mankind

Government: Aristocratic republic

Ruler: City Council

Currency: pound (gp), shilling (sp), pence (cp)

Resources: beer, spirits, furniture, cloth, ceramics, leather and iron goods, jewelry, usury, culture, scientific knowledge.

Diplomacy: Since Paridon has no arable land beyond the city proper, starvation is a serious concern. Although contact with other domains has fortunately increased in recent years, allowing Paridon to purchase foodstuffs, the city is still woefully underfed.

Most merchants who arrive in Paridon bring raw materials, which in turn are used in handicrafts that are sold in distant domains. Gradually, other realms have also discovered that Paridon is one of the most modern cities in Ravenloft, perhaps second only to Port-à-Lucine in Dementlieu. Accordingly, interest in Paridon's culture and scientific knowledge has grown.

The Land: The domain of Paridon consists of a single bleak city steeped in fog and bloodshed. Its narrow streets of smooth cobblestones wind between tight clusters of buildings. Dense fog, white as a shroud, perpetually blankets the city, severely limiting visibility. Dark figures and clattering horse carriages can emerge from the haze with startling swiftness. Horses are rarely ridden, but such black carriages are frequently used to get around; many folk also conduct their business and errands on foot. The city has distinct neighborhoods with wealthy and poor residential districts, commercial avenues, a wharf along the Nodnal River, and seedy back alleys filled with streetwalkers and gamblers.

Most buildings are constructed to two or three stories, with gabled roofs and narrow doors and windows. Dressed stone blocks or plastered brick is used in most homes and shops, with heavy timbers for support. Roofs are shingled with thin wood or slate. Most structures are gray, unfriendly, and sparsely adorned with severe stone faces or ornaments of black iron. The estates of the wealthy are set back from the streets and surrounded by tall, forbidding gates and lovingly tended gardens. Tidy city parks once dotted Paridon, but most of these have been converted into meager plots of crops. Stunted food plants are also grown on rooftops. As dusk approaches, young boys wander the streets, lighting the iron streetlights that line the boulevards. In recent years, however, Paridoners rarely venture out at night, fearful of violent madmen and stranger things. The domain's most infamous predator is Bloody Jack, a nearly mythic killer who goes on gruesome rampages every thirteen years and whose latest rampage comes due this year.

Temperatures in Paridon are normally cool and mild, a weak drizzle sometimes falling like salty tears. The fog persists through the muggy summer months and during the bitter winters, when silent snow blankets the city.

The Folk: Paridoners have wide hips and athletic builds, though aristocrats tend to be portly and commoners lean. Their skin is fair and ruddy, sometimes freckled lightly on the cheeks or nose. Eye color is normally gray with a bluish or greenish cast, but nearly any hue can occur. Their hair is straight or slightly wavy, and color varies widely, from blond to auburn to medium brown. Men cut their hair short, often slicking it back in a roguish style that the women find attractive. Neatly trimmed mustaches, beards, and muttonchops are popular. Women grow their tresses extremely long but pin them up in elaborate buns. Clothing among Paridoners is somber and coarse, though expertly tailored. Men wear collared shirts, trousers, high boots, waistcoats, and heavy cloaks. Noblemen don tall black hats and tuck scarves under their necks. Women wear long dresses, coats, and high boots. It is indecent for a woman to be outdoors without a hat; common women wear simple bonnets, but the hats of noblewomen are elaborate. Jewelry is worn but is never flashy and is usually limited to solitary rings, pins, cameos, or necklaces.

Paridoners are sober people, the foggy streets of their city reflecting their demeanor. At one time they enjoyed food, drink, song, and dance with lusty enthusiasm, but their manner in recent times is noticeably dry and detached. Although violent criminals terrorize them, Paridoners remain perpetually stalwart. They are not easily discouraged and are possessed of remarkable tenacity and ingenuity. The class divide is deep and ironclad. The wealthy never associate with commoners, who are expected to mind their place and treat the nobles with respect and deference.

Although they worship no gods, many Paridoners, especially aristocrats, subscribe to a "theological philosophy" known as the Divinity of Mankind. Lodges of male Paridoners meet weekly to discuss philosophy, the arts, and natural science. The crux of their beliefs is perfection of the mind, body, and spirit, an aspiration that has spawned a peculiar monastic tradition. Some folk whisper that the Divinity conceals more sinister activities and that lodge members participate in secretive occult rites steeped in the language of alchemy.

The Law: The governance of Paridon is firmly in the hands of the aristocracy, who chafe at the notion of sharing power with the unwashed masses. Male nobles elect a City Council of nine from among their ranks every five years. The council is responsible for administrating most aspects of life in Paridon, including collecting taxes, adjudicating disputes, overseeing the city watch, and organizing programs for urban farming and public health. The council watches out for the interests of the nobles first and foremost, considering the welfare of the commoners only when it reinforces their image. Vice and violent crimes are commonplace in the streets, yet the council is preoccupied with punishing debtors and seizing assets. Its only recent action that has met with widespread approval has been to strengthen the city watch and increase evening patrols.

Despite the sharp class divide, Paridon's society is remarkably progressive in some respects. Professional advocates argue in civil and criminal trials, where legal precedent trumps legal principle. Merchants can protect themselves from financial ruin by paying a regular fee to usurers. The daily Paridon Newsbill is not controlled by the aristocracy and is sometimes critical of the council's actions.

Classes: Fighters, rogues, monks, clerics, beguilers are the most common classes. Paridon has consisted exclusively of settled lands for many decades, so more nature oriented classes (like rangers) are unknown there. Also, wizards are highly unusual. The most common characters in Paridon are rogues and fighters. Native clerics and monks all follow the philosophy known as the Divinity of Mankind.

Recommended Skills: Hide, Influence, Listen, Lore, Move Silently, Sleight of Hand

Recommended Feats: Blind-Fight, Exotic Weapon Proficiency, Improved Unarmed Strike, Skill Focus (Influence), Weapon Finesse, Weapon Focus (flintlock, rapier)

Names: British-themed names can be used for Paridon characters.

Source: Ravenloft 3rd Edition Campaign Setting, Hour of the Knife, Domains of Dread
« Last Edit: September 05, 2021, 10:44:39 PM by EO »

EO

  • Assistant Head DM/Developer
  • Head DMs
  • Dark Power
  • ******
  • Posts: 19195
  • The one and only, the one everyone wants to be!
Kalidnay
« Reply #36 on: June 06, 2021, 04:04:44 PM »
Kalidnay

Cultural Level: Classical, though the people of Kalidnay do not forge metal weapons, but instead use stone, bone, and obsidian. This is not due to a lack of knowledge, but due to a lack of metal. In Kalidnay, iron is rarer than water.

Climate: Tropical

Terrain: Deserts

Major Settlements: Kalidnay (2,300) and Artan-Ak (200).

Population: 2,500.

Races: 98% Human, 2% Other

Languages: Common

Religions: Kalid-Ma, the Sorcerer-King.

Government: Theocracy

Ruler: Kalid-Ma.

Currency: Ceramic pieces that are broken into several smaller pieces to denominate smaller amounts of currency (a full ceramic piece is the equivalent of 1 gp). These ceramic coins are simply called "ceramic pieces."

Resources: wheat, corn, obsidian, ceramic. No natural animals live in Kalidnay. Metal and water are extremely rare.

Diplomacy: None. The local population tries to capture lone travelers or weak bands and sell them to the arena masters. Strangers in the arena always provide new excitement, as well as reducing the chances of a citizen of the city being conscripted. Anyone entering Kalidnay should be well armed and well prepared.

The Land: The weather in Kalidnay is a study in extremes. During the day, an immense red sun blasts upon the land, driving temperatures up to one hundred fifteen degrees Fahrenheit and higher. Three greenish moons rise in the night sky, while temperatures quickly plunge to just shy of freezing. Survival in the domain of Kalidnay is a challenge for any character. Water cannot be found except in the two settlements of Kalidnay and Artan-Ak. A constant wind blows across the sands, whipping it into the eyes of travelers and stinging their skin.

Kalidnay is an island surrounded by a basin of loose sand. The natives refer to this as the Silt Sea, and travel here is very difficult. Special equipment (skimmer crafts or specially made shoes that resemble snowshoes) is needed to cross the Silt Sea. The Mists only appear in Kalidnay at night, rising up from the silt that surrounds the domain.

The city of Kalidnay is a sprawling place that once held fifteen thousand people, although now it is quite underpopulated. Roughly twenty-three hundred souls make their home here. In the center of Kalidnay stands a ziggurat, an elaborate structure over one hundred feet high, surrounded by a palace complex. These are the only buildings in the city that are in good repair, housing the land's ruler and sorcerer-king, Kalid-Ma. Despite the best efforts of the citizens, the fields around the city of Kalidnay consistently produce poor crops.

Only two hundred people dwell in Artan-Ak, though their community is surrounded by the best farmland in the domain. Over two-thirds of the food grown here is sent to Kalidnay to feed the city. The inhabitants of Artan-Ak are not willing participants in this process; armed caravans are dispatched regularly to escort the harvest to the city. Many in Artan-Ak go hungry every year to feed the citizens of Kalidnay.

The Folk: The folk of Kalidnay are typical representatives of any Athasian city, they are light-skinned, with hair colors ranging from reddish-blond to black. They favor loose-fitting clothes, with skirts and vests among the most common clothing for both men and women. The people frequently wear masks or veils in order to protect their eyes and faces from the scouring sandstorms that whip across the domain.

Psionics are common among the people of Kalidnay. In fact, not having psionic ability is considered an aberration in this domain. On the other hand, wizards are reviled, often hunted down and killed if discovered. This is because magic in Kalidnay saps life from the land itself.

Water here is more precious than gold. Spitting is considered a grave insult, and crying is an expression of ultimate sorrow. The people of the domain do not acknowledge any gods, save Kalid-Ma the sorcerer-king, who grants spellcasting abilities to his servants, the templars. Other clerics rarely exist, and only those serving elemental powers.

The folk are unlikely to receive strangers from non-Athasian lands gracefully. Elves, dwarves, and other demihumans are seen as quite strange and different. Xenophobia (fear of other races) runs high in Kalidnay.

Inhabitants of Artan-Ak hate the city dwellers. In this smaller village, they believe Kalid-Ma has been usurped by head templar Thakok-An. Although they have no love for the sorcerer-king, they blame their current problems on the templar. Renegades and rebels are welcomed here with open arms, but the "underground" is riddled with templar spies.

Arena combat is a popular diversion among the people of Kalidnay. Several times a week, accused criminals battle each other, often to the death, to the delight of the citizens. There are all manner of captured monsters and beasts to provide amusement for the audience. The life of an arena gladiator is unpleasant at best.

The Law: Kalid-Ma is the undisputed master of Kalidnay, and the inhabitants honor him as a god. He has, however, been in seclusion for over twenty years. His loyal head templar, the half-elf Thakok-An, is the only being allowed to see him, and she carries out his decrees with unswerving devotion. One such decree is the banning of all use of magic, except the one used by templars of Kalid-Ma, since every caster may be a defiler. Since any wizard is a potential defiler, they all go to the arena. They are stripped of their spell books, of course.

Classes: Kalidnay originates in the Dark Sun setting, so all classes found there can be used in Kalidnay. However, arcane casters are particularly rare since they are actively hunted down. Clerics must be templars of Kalid-Ma.

Names: For most humans, a single name suffices. Templars often take an honorific based on their rank in the religious hierarchy. Nobles also have a family name, which is generally referred to after the word "of," as in "Agis of Asticles." Members of a merchant house take the house's name as their own last name. Freemen occasionally refer to their occupations to avoid confusion, as in "Barek the Weaver."

You can consult the Dark Sun entry for more details on Athasian characters.

Sources: Domains of Dread, Forbidden Lore, Dark Sun Campaign Setting (AD&D)
« Last Edit: June 13, 2021, 08:46:56 PM by EO »

EO

  • Assistant Head DM/Developer
  • Head DMs
  • Dark Power
  • ******
  • Posts: 19195
  • The one and only, the one everyone wants to be!
Nosos
« Reply #37 on: June 06, 2021, 05:28:39 PM »
Nosos

Cultural Level: Renaissance

Climate: Warm

Terrain: Settled Area (Small City)

Major Settlements: Nosos (6,000).

Population: 6,000.

Races: 98% Human, 2% Other

Languages: Nosian

Religions: None

Government: Virtual anarchy

Ruler: Malus Sceleris.

Currency: factory (gp), smokestack (sp), gear (cp)

Resources: coal, gold, factory products.

Diplomacy: There are no trees or other natural plants in Nosos, aside from those found on the manor estates. The only way anyone can make a living from the land is to mine it. The only way to obtain grain and meat is through trade with other lands.

The market is located on the edge of town, away from the worst of the conditions. The merchants are either those who are native to Nosos or who can be lured by the money the lord of the domain promises to each who enters. Since the stench and appearance of the city keeps most merchants away, those who do come leave with full purses, although their clothes must afterwards be burnt.

The metropolis holds the mines which provide its income. The main pits produce coal and gold, two items easily traded. The smithies and coal-powered mills nearby belch enormous clouds of gritty soot skyward and mix with the other ingredients lofted by the wind.

The Land: This is one of the foulest domains in Ravenloft. When the Mists arise in this domain, no one even notices; the smoke from the refineries and burning coal mines obscure them. Rotting compost, raw sewage, and huge mounds of trash choke the streets of the city of Nosos, which makes up almost the entire domain. Everything is coated with a yellow-gray grime, and hundreds of chimneys pump thick black smoke into the air around the clock. The countryside around the town consists of more mounds of decaying garbage, including the bodies of many deceased citizens. A few walled estates contain the only green, garbage-free areas, but even there, the stench is impossible to escape.

The weather itself is the worst possible kind for the land which it encompasses. Nosos is a hot, humid land where the winds whistle constantly throughout the day. The clouds skid insanely across the bLotchy sky, spurred on by the howling wind. The sun dares not show its face for too long, seeming to fear the blight that Nosos would surely cast upon it. Even as it is, the sun appears only through a hazy cataract of pollution.

The Folk: The six thousand inhabitants of Nosos are generally pale-skinned, blue-eyed, and light-haired. They are a scrabbling, miserable folk who care nothing for the lives of others, seeking gain only for themselves. They even occasionally pull cruel pranks simply for their own amusement.

One of the ways to climb socially in Nosos is to attend the masquerade balls held by the wealthy residents. Though only other rich folk are invited, the poor people often try to sneak into the parties. Usually, they are easily detected by their stench, but some actually bathe in order to pass undetected. The rich are extremely paranoid that the poor people are carrying an incurable, infectious plague.

The Law: The law in Nosos is dictated by the whims of the wealthy. The general state of the land is near anarchy. The poor folk keep to themselves, and the wealthy use them as the need arises. The bodyguards of the wealthy enforce the desires of their employers. The only real law that applies in Nosos is the Golden Rule: He who has the gold makes the rules. In this land, most of the gold is owned by Lord Malus Sceleris.

Disease seems to be a way of life in Nosos. The effects of the various diseases combine to create a fatal version, which even the best of the modern healers cannot cure. Since the people of Nosos disdain healing magic, claiming that it is only superstition, clerics are not welcome.

Classes: All player character races and classes allowed in Ravenloft are allowed here. Upper class characters from Nosos are extremely frightened of disease and get scared when in close proximity with a sick individual. Lower-class characters tend to be less charismatic, since the smell of rotting garbage still clings to them due to their poor personal hygiene. Because of their constant exposure to the unwholesome environment of Nosos, these lower-class characters are particularly resistant to diseases of all types (can take Resist Disease to reflect this).

Clerics are rare and not welcome since the people of Nosos disdain healing magic, claiming that it is only superstition. The stubborn folk prefer the more modern methods of herbs, poultices, and leeches. Clerics are thus reviled by the common folk as witch doctors and no one of importance pays them any heed.

Grimetrekkers can also be found prowling Nosos' infested sewers.

Recommended Skills: Antagonize, Appraise, Disguise, Heal, Influence, Sleight of Hand.

Recommended Feats: Exotic Weapon Proficiency, Filth Eater, Resist Poison, Resist Disease, Skill Focus (Heal), Weapon Focus (firearms).

Sources: Domains of Dread, Islands of Terror
« Last Edit: June 13, 2021, 08:49:18 PM by EO »

EO

  • Assistant Head DM/Developer
  • Head DMs
  • Dark Power
  • ******
  • Posts: 19195
  • The one and only, the one everyone wants to be!
Staunton Bluffs
« Reply #38 on: June 07, 2021, 05:45:20 PM »
Staunton Bluffs

Cultural Level: Renaissance

Climate: Temperate

Terrain: Plains, forests, cliffs, swamps, hills

Major Settlements: Willisford (200).

Population: 1,000.

Races: 99% Human, 1% Other

Languages: Avergnite

Religions: None

Government: Direct democracy

Ruler: Sir Torrence Bleysmith (absentee).

Currency: no currency, trade conducted through barter

Resources: grain, cattle, sheep, peat.

Diplomacy: They are a very insular community, not often dealing with outsiders. The peasants of Staunton Bluffs are unable to rely on trade from the other lands.

The Land: Staunton Bluffs is a small, isolated domain, about 4 miles on a side. A line of sandstone cliffs, running north to south, divides the land in half. The western region is relatively flat and good for farming, with a few wooded patches. The bluffs rise above it. At their highest point, near the center of the land, a castle is perched on a cliff. It is Castle Stonecrest. Most natives of this domain live in modest white cottages, which are scattered across the farmland. Staunton Bluffs also has one tiny settlement named Willisford. The village is located beside the Willis river in the west.

The weather in Staunton Bluffs is generally cold and wet. Mornings begin with a misty rain or fog, but the skies often clear by noon. As the sun fades, the mists return. They spill off the bluffs and settle over the farmlands, bringing with them the weird sounds of night.

The Folk: The folk of Staunton Bluffs are generally fair-skinned people with dark hair and eyes. Although they work long hours in the fields or with animals, they are usually clean. They believe in frequent bathing and cleansing of their clothes. Their clothing is not drab, but neither is it colorful or exciting. It matches the prevalent personality of Staunton Bluffs.

In comparison to other domains, life is good here, albeit boring. As long as the folk stay away from the cliffs and Castle Stonecrest, they can go peacefully about their business. They are not rich or even comfortable, but with hard work each day, they survive.

Since Staunton Bluffs is all that most of these people have seen of the world, they have difficulty imagining the world as much larger. Their views are narrow-minded and provincial, with very little room for anything new. They are a very insular community, not often dealing with outsiders.

The Law: The citizens do not have any sort of ruling body. Their population is small enough that direct democracy works better than it would anywhere else. They hold their meetings once monthly, choosing a new person to chair the meeting each time. It makes no difference whether the chair is male or female, for there is no discrimination in Staunton Bluffs. Every member of the community is an integral, valuable part without whom the others would find it more difficult to survive.

There is an informal militia in Staunton Bluffs, based solely on who is closest to the scene of trouble at the time. The people of Staunton Bluffs are competent fighters and will fight to protect the peace in their domain. Criminals from the domain are nonexistent. The only lawbreakers in Staunton Bluffs are those who come from outside. The citizens deal with them harshly, often cutting off the hand of the criminal. There are no jails in Willisford, as the citizens are fairly sure that the criminals will reform after they lose one hand.

Destroying or damaging the trees is a punishable offense. The people do not look kindly on those who ruin the few natural areas still intact in this tiny domain. Certainly, the citizens could venture into the wild eastern half of the land for wood, but they would sooner sacrifice their lives.

The lord of the land, Sir Torrence Bleysmith, has established only a few laws, but the citizens observe these scrupulously. The first law dictates that the living remain well away from Castle Stonecrest. They do so almost fanatically, physically restraining those who plan to do otherwise.

The second law applies only to the dwellers of the eastern domain. They are forbidden to travel to the lowlands at night, no matter how greatly they despise the living. The supernatural beings are forbidden to wander west of the bluffs, or they may face the wrath of the lord.

Classes: Fighter is the most common class here. There are no native arcane casters since the use of magic is frowned upon. The people desire that life remain simple and explainable. They are a pragmatic populace and do not enjoy having the natural order of things disrupted by such inexplicable phenomena that magic often entails. They are not so fanatical that they burn mages and priests, but the company of such is not welcome, nor long tolerated.

Names: English-inspired names and surnames can be used for Staunton Bluffs.

Sources: Realm of Terror, Islands of Terror
« Last Edit: November 13, 2021, 04:34:49 PM by EO »

EO

  • Assistant Head DM/Developer
  • Head DMs
  • Dark Power
  • ******
  • Posts: 19195
  • The one and only, the one everyone wants to be!
Farelle
« Reply #39 on: June 07, 2021, 08:53:44 PM »
Farelle

Cultural Level: Early Medieval

Climate: Temperate

Terrain: Plains, Forests

Major Settlements: Kaynis (1,000) and Mortillis (1,000).

Population: 2,000.

Races: 98% Human, 2% Other

Languages: Farellian

Religions: None

Government: Democracy

Ruler: Village Councils.

Currency: no currency, trade conducted through barter

Resources: grain, cereals, cattle, dairy, sheep.

Diplomacy: Farellians conduct steady trade with other lands. Navigating the Mists to Farelle is relatively easy, which brings many merchants from Ghastria to Pharazia. The twin villages of Kaynis and Mortilis welcome travelers readily, and many merchants choose to end their days here.

The Land: Farelle is wild and thickly wooded, although civilization and agriculture claims more and more terrain every day. It has two towns on each side of the Mourfa river, which runs through the center of the domain, Kaynis in the west and Mortilis in the east. Both of them lie in an area devoted to agriculture. The land is rich, although extreme - summers are hot and winters are frigid - and full of animal life. Packs of dogs and jackals are quite common, and seem unusually vicious; many careless humans are killed every year. This is both a blessing and a curse from the animals' point of view. Animal attacks serve to reduce the ever-increasing numbers of humans, but each attack is followed by an increase in the number of hunts and traps laid.

The Folk: In a land where strife and xenophobia are disturbingly common, the genuine warmth of the Farellians is justly appreciated. They are a simple people; however, they are passionate and run to extremes. Many take offense at simple mistakes, and will pursue their enemies to the grave. Their sensitivity to insult only fades towards a wandering tinker named Jack Karn. Although he is surly and aggressive, and seems always to be ill, the Farellians are extraordinarily fond of him, and often seek him out.

Farellians are prolific. Women commonly bear 13 children or more before they become too old or weary to continue. There is no fear of overpopulation. Stillbirths are common, and carnivores help keep the natives' numbers in check.

Most are peasant farmers, although many make their living by hunting, but that profession can be as deadly for them as it is for their prey. Strangely, a disproportionate number of sages and scientists live in the villages. Because of the ready contact with advanced domains like Mordent, Paridon and Nosos, Farellians technology advances at an astounding rate.

The Law: The citizens are governed by two local village councils, appointed by popular vote, that make decisions for the villages. The villages are rather independant of each other, though coexist peacefully.

Classes: Fighters, rangers, rogues, druids, and wizards are the most common.

Recommended Skills: Animal Empathy, Appraise, Hide, Listen, Lore, Move Silently, Search, Spot

Recommended Feats: Alertness, Blooded, Bullheaded, Skill Focus (Animal Empathy), Stealthy.

Names: English-inspired names and surnames can be used for Farelle.

Sources: Realm of Terror, Book of Sacrifices
« Last Edit: November 13, 2021, 04:37:20 PM by EO »

MAB77

  • Developers
  • Dark Power
  • *
  • Posts: 3620
Tovag
« Reply #40 on: June 07, 2021, 10:49:11 PM »
Tovag

Cultural Level: Medieval

Climate: Temperate

Terrain: Forests, mountains and plains.

Major Settlements: City of Tor Gorak.

Population: 15,000

Races: 99% Human, 1% Other.

Languages: Ancient Flan. Note that the culture of Tovag is one from Oerth's distant past, but characters drawn from the Greyhawk setting would not recognize this. The language and customs of these folk are those of Ancient Flan, but such knowledge was lost in the history of their homeworld. Nowhere on Oerth does anyone speak or understand the language spoken in Tovag.

Religions: The folk of Tor Gorak are not dedicated to any one god or religion in particular. They primarily worship thousands of powers and spirits dedicated to protection and watchfulness. A few clerics maintain a large cathedral, the Temple of Penates, but most of the time faithful and fearful supplicants come here to worship the gods on their own. Most likely, worshipers do not even know the names of the gods prayed to by those around them. Divine casters can gain their powers from any of the Greyhawk deities, though only the Cult of Vecna has a significant, but hidden, presence within the domain.

Government: Undead Military dictatorship.

Ruler: Kas the Bloody-Handed.

Currencies: Gold, silver and copper pieces stamped with the sigil of Kas.

Resources: Wheat, oats, barley, hops, rye, potatoes, cattle, fishes, hogs, dairy, beer, dye, timber, salt, weapons.

Diplomacy: None. Tovag is an isolated domain without any neighbours nor allies.

The Land: Tovag lies pinned between the churning Mists and the jagged Burning Peaks. Much of the land is covered with light forests of scrub pines and other plants hardy enough to survive in the sulfur-rich soil. The land hosts wildlife typical to temperate forests with wolves, mountain lions, and the occasional viper being the most dangerous of this land's animals. The lord of Tovag, Kas the Bloody-Handed, dwells in a great fortress in the northern portion of the domain. In the south lies the densely packed city of Tor Gorak and the expanses of farms that supply grain and other crops to the inhabitants. A number of well-constructed flagstone highways run across the countryside. The most noteworthy of these is the Karsican Way, which runs between Tor Gorak and the Fortress of Kas. Three lesser roads run to the west, vanishing through passes in the Burning Peaks and the Mists beyond. Despite the fine quality of these roads, they are rarely used.

The streets of Tor Gorak are usually empty, due to the patrols that march through every neighborhood, apprehending and detaining anyone they see fit. Thus, the poor, downtrodden, and oppressed citizens hurry to their various destinations without lingering. A curfew denies anyone the right to travel inside the city after dark except for soldiers and Daggers (the local militia). While in this city, travelers encounter mostly women (many of them pregnant), small children, and old people. Almost all are human. Kas forces all able-bodied men and some women to serve in the army to battle against Vecna and the forces of Cavitius. To keep the army fed and supplied, certain soldiers are allowed to leave the army after a time to work as farmers, merchants, and craftsmen.

The Folk: The poor souls who live in Tor Gorak accept their lot in grim silence. They recognize that theirs is a harsh master and speak of their lord Kas only in whispers and guarded tones. They know too well that the creature who rules beyond the Burning Peaks, or so they think, is far more terrible than their own lord. The inhabitants of Tovag tend to have very large families, mostly because the lord pays a decent bounty for each child born. Those who live in this domain also age at an accelerated rate. Most reach maturity after about nine years, allowing them to be conscripted into Kas' army sooner than would be possible elsewhere. Newcomers to the city do not usually realize this until they are told. The residents do not think of their rapid aging as strange. Rather, they would find it strange that others age at such a slow rate. Any visitors who remain in this domain for more than a month begin to age faster as well.

The Law: Kas maintains a constant war-time mentality, forcing his people to live the most meagre of existences in order to save important supplies for his endless war against Vecna. He cares nothing for these people, seeing them only as instruments in the effort to destroy his former master.

Life in Tovag is dominated by routine searches of people and residences, a complete lack of personal liberties, and the crushing heel of a tyrannical police state. The state police, known as the Daggers, search continuously for traitors, spies, and criminals. The Daggers have the power to sentence and execute criminals on the spot. Little matters like evidence and guilt are seldom important in the meting out of justice. Citizens of Tor Gorak possess few rights and even fewer luxuries. Their food is rationed, and hoarding is illegal. While the state allows citizens to bear arms, they consider stockpiling weapons a serious offense. In general, if residents commonly carry the weapon on their person, they can keep it (since this makes raising a citizens' militia that much easier). Laws in Tor Gorak also forbid the possession of books, knowledge of any sort of written language, or any other sort of formalized education. Residents of Tovag learn the arts of war and those trades that support the war-nothing else.

Classes: Fighters, barbarians, and rogues form the bulk of adventuring classes encountered. Small contingents of warmages are also trained to fight against Cavitius. All other classes can be encountered but would be rare exceptions. Especially those following scholarly or artistic pursuits as such practice is outlawed.

Recommended Skills: Any martial oriented skills.

Recommended Feats: Any combat oriented feats.

Names:

-Tovagian Male Names: Banquo, Bratorn, Dast, Haroln, Hragris, Qoolarn, Skreyn, Tejen, Virianis, Vocar

-Tovagian Female Names: Jacairn, Larossa, Marit, Valuriss

Sources: Domains of Dread, p. 110., Vecna Reborn, p. 5-7., Van Richten's Guide to Ravenloft, 5th Ed.
« Last Edit: June 13, 2021, 09:23:26 PM by EO »
Best Regards!
MAB

Dev. Relationist for the Dark Powers.
1 Castle Road, Castle Ravenloft, Village of Barovia.

EO

  • Assistant Head DM/Developer
  • Head DMs
  • Dark Power
  • ******
  • Posts: 19195
  • The one and only, the one everyone wants to be!
The Nightmare Lands
« Reply #41 on: June 09, 2021, 06:24:45 PM »
The Nightmare Lands

Cultural Level: Stone Age, but the City of Nod is a renaissance culture. Also, the Clinic for the Mentally Distressed was originally located in Nova Vaasa, a medieval domain with chivalric influences.

Climate: Temperate

Terrain: Forests and plains.

Major Settlements: City of Nod (0).

Population: Unknown.

Races: 99% Humans (Abber Nomad), 1% Other

Languages: Abber

Religions: None

Government: None

Ruler: The Nightmare Court.

Currency: no currency

Resources: silk, wood, woven crafts, rare metals, gemstones.

Diplomacy: None. In the past the Abber Nomads sometimes ventured outside to conduct trade with neighboring Nova Vaasa and Hazlan but since the Grand Conjunction, they have been isolated.

The Land: In this domain, the lines between reality and dreams are blurred. The terrain alters so quickly that it almost seems alive. The sky changes color, the sun changes size, and the air changes temperature. Each metamorphosis is smooth and seamless, usually occurring at the corner of the viewer's field of vision. Much of this domain is covered by forest, though it is truly trackless. No trail can form in this unstable country.

At the heart of this ever-shifting forest lies the City of Nod. This ruined metropolis is devoid of life, save for the staff and patients of the Clinic for the Mentally Distressed, drawn here through the mighty powers of the land's rulers, the Nightmare Court. Dr. Illhousen, the clinic's chief physician, attempted to challenge the Nightmare Court and lost. The court then claimed him and all of his patients.

The forest itself is surrounded by a blasted wasteland, the exact features of which are ever-changing. The one constant landmark here is the Ring of Dreams, a collection of thousands of glistening spheres that range in diameter from three to three hundred feet. Each one of these contains a dreamscape, a pocket dimension where nightmares unfold. A person can look into these spheres and see what appears to be worlds in miniature. The curious should beware, however, as those who gaze too long into these dreamscapes may be drawn into them, never to be retrieved. Within one of these dreamspheres lies the domain of Davion.

The Nightmare Lands are as unstable as a dream. This Floating domain moves throughout the Misty Border, sometimes even appearing in the Nocturnal Sea. While in this eastern sea, the island is surrounded by shoals that rip the bottom from any ship save those piloted by expert seamen. Obviously, this domain also links to the Plane of Dreams.

The Folk: Until recently, only the Abber Nomads lived in this domain. Never owning any more than they can carry, the Abber Nomads are occasionally mistaken for druids due to their simplistic lifestyles. They do not use metal weapons or build structures of any kind. These hunters arm themselves primarily with spears and bows. Their culture is based on self-sacrifice and communal unity.

These nomads have developed the mental fortitude needed to deal with the constant changes of the land in which they dwell, something which scholars brave enough to study them attribute to their simple way of life. The Abbers themselves say that they survive because they understand reality as it truly is: Anything that cannot be perceived, does not exist.

Most Abbers have no faith in the permanency of anything, including other beings, but a small percentage reject this philosophy. This minority strives to understand what governs the Nightmare Lands. Other Abbers view this as insanity and cast these individuals out. However, all Abbers believe that insanity can grant insight, so the outcasts become, in effect, tribal shamans. These Abber shamans can cast up to 3rd-level spells and have a variety of other mysterious powers.

Recently the staff and inmates of the Clinic for the Mentally Distressed were drawn into the land by the evil deeds of Dr. Harold Tasker, who had fallen under the sway of an evil being known as the Nightmare Man. The clinic's chief physician, Dr. Gregorian Illhousen, attempted to defeat the Nightmare Court, but he was betrayed by Tasker. Although Tasker has been confined to one of the cells, Illhousen and the eighteen other staff members - not to mention the sixty-two patients - have not yet been able to escape. Worse, they are slowly being driven insane by the nightmares of this domain. Thus, the clinic is gradually becoming a very dangerous place.

The Law: The Nightmare Court rules this place. Their exact numbers are unknown, but the more prominent ones include the Nightmare Man (a skeletal, robed figure whose body consists of thousands of crawling spiders), the Ghost Dancer (a tragic, undead ballerina whose white gown sports ominous, bloody handprints), Morpheus (an imp with a wicked sense of humor), Hypnos (sleep personified), Mullonga (a malicious, aboriginal witch), and the Rainbow Serpent (an intelligent, evil snake).

Each member of the court seems to favor a certain type of nightmare, endeavoring to pollute the nightly sleep of mortals with these dreams. The Nightmare Lands have no laws, save the chaotic logic of a dreamscape.

Classes: Fighters and rangers are the most common classes found here. There are no Abber wizards, and Abber clerics are almost equally rare. The few Abbers who decide to take up priestly magic and try to learn about their strange world must leave the safety of their tribes and become Abber shamans (see above).

Races: Natives player characters from the Nightmare Lands must be Abber nomads.

Names: Abber nomads have short first names and no last names (eg. Skya for a female character). Abber shamans take on nicknames that reflect their journey.

For more information on Abber nomads, click here.

Sources: Domains of Dread, The Nightmare Lands, Realms of Terror, Tales of Ravenloft
« Last Edit: June 13, 2021, 09:23:13 PM by EO »