View Full Version : Tears of Blood Campaign Setting

Lord of Shadows
2012-05-02, 02:24 AM
A little introduction first...

Set on the World of Ursoule, the Tears of Blood Campaign Setting was a project here on the Forums that ended in 2009 after several years without achieving a proper compilation of the material. There are likely those around who still remember those magic-filled days. In late 2010 I created a thread in the World-Building forum dedicated to bringing that material together into a usable form. Since then I have had to change where the files were stored, started a local playtest, and created a simple website devoted to this material. To avoid any "necromantic entanglements," the old thread will be left as is, although the file download links have been updated. For reference, the old thread is here (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?t=181394&page=2).

The Tears of Blood Campaign Setting

The new Tears of Blood website can be found here (http://tears-of-blood.weebly.com/) with all the current files for download.

Please check it out and post any feedback here, or on the website. Updates to the material are continuing. The material has been (mostly) optimized for Pathfinder rules, but should be able to be played in most any D20 RPG rule system. (The descriptions and background could probably be used in any rules system)

Tears of Blood is a high-fantasy, gritty, and dangerous place. It is a world in which magic is common, but suspicious, and not outrightly accepted by all. Magic proved useless against a devastating and unnatural Plague, leaving damaged or shattered civilizations in its wake and twisted wrecks of some of its survivors.

The core D20 races have near equivalents in this world, but with altered characteristics and history. Humans have new cultures and religions, Dwarves here are Mercenaries, and in place of Half-elves we have the Feldarin, once the Imperial Overlords of the continent, now reduced to a fraction of their former power. Elves were created from the Feldarin by a bargain some of them made with a malevolent being with devastating consequences. Halflings are the Lords of the Seas, Gnomes ride great mechanical vessels and populate the realms both far beneath and high above the surface, and "Orrks" are deeply religious jungle dwellers with a penchant for sacrificial offerings. New in this setting are the reflective Giantkin, the twisted Plaguetouched and the still less natural Fleshwrought.

Behind the scenes, other factions come into play. An ancient Dracolich plots underground, and has in her long history helped shape the essential nature of at least one of the world's core races. The nature of the gods and other fundamental forces behind the world is disputed between cultures, but is almost invariably defined according to five concepts - War, Life/Death, Magic, Travel, and Nature. And in addition to these forces, the existence of another god-like entity is undeniable - the Plague Fiend, the being who by its deal with the Elves gained power to cause suffering to all races. He is rumored to have brought the Plague to the world, but, truly, nobody knows the source of the Plague the people call "The Weeping".

Thanks to Alarra for the original version of the above description.

2012-05-02, 02:51 AM
Cool. Reading through it now. :smallbiggrin:

Lord of Shadows
2012-05-02, 04:15 PM
The Supplement The Cosmology of Ursoule (http://tears-of-blood.weebly.com/uploads/1/2/0/0/12003837/the_cosmology_of_ursoule.pdf) has been updated to include some basic information on the zodiac constellations, which are called "Signs".

All of the current material can be downloaded from here (http://tears-of-blood.weebly.com/).

2012-05-02, 06:07 PM
Osijek and Sisak?? Are you from any of those citys or is it some kind of a tribute

Lord of Shadows
2012-05-02, 07:35 PM
Osijek and Sisak?? Are you from any of those citys or is it some kind of a tribute

Nope, not from either of those. Those names (along with pretty much all of the location names) were part of the original material on the old threads. Several "real world" inspirations were mentioned, and those names were attributed to a Croat origin if I remember correctly.

I don't know if there was any intention at a tribute with those names, but I have to admit, they sure fit in with the setting perfectly. Our playtest campaign here is taking place around nearby Chevengrad, which I believe also had a real world source.

Thank you and I hope you enjoy the material.

2012-05-03, 06:33 AM
well I'm from Osijek so it sounds a bit wierd, if you know what I mean

2012-05-03, 10:05 AM
This is rich and complex. I'm deeply impressed with the project as a whole, with the quality of the work you produced, and the communal thought that went into its creation.

Orrks are perhaps my favourite, and I love your take on gnomes. Taking somewhat unloved races and giving them a much needed boost of class - nice.

I also love the lurking horrors. What would a campaign world be without them? The first thing I look for in a campaign setting is its hooks, and these are great. If I don't get the chance to ever play Tears of Blood myself, I expect one of these days when I GM, the players may find subplots and enigmas leading to draconic necromancy shadowing the earth.

The cosmology and theology is fairly mature, which I appreciate. I appreciate every movement from strict D&D polytheism towards a stronger multiplicity of faiths - in my campaigns, racial religions are just as likely to be focused on mandalas or campfire tales than on a pantheon of racial deities. What you've done feels natural & legitimate, and I like it.

Overall, this setting looks like a majestic place to adventure. Thanks, guys. This is good.

Lord of Shadows
2012-05-03, 03:19 PM
well I'm from Osijek so it sounds a bit wierd, if you know what I mean

Yes, I can understand feeling that way. There isn't much detail in the "Tears of Blood" version of Osijek that is developed.

A brief summary might go like this:

Osijek has become more important as a port city, despite being so far from the coast. There is also a great battlefield nearby that is rumored to be haunted. And it seems that Conjuration [Summoning] spells don't work right in that area.

Sounds like a great place to start an adventure!

2012-05-03, 03:34 PM
do you know how to pronounce Osijek?

Lord of Shadows
2012-05-03, 04:27 PM
Other than trying to sound it out, no, I really have no idea. The "Osijek" area in the campaign material is loosely based on eastern Europe, with gothic overtones. In fact, I think the original source used was a real world map.

Lord of Shadows
2012-06-01, 06:33 PM
Looking for some ideas. The Tears of Blood campaign setting has only five "gods," or "pantheons," and each culture/society has its own interpretation of "The Five." The five "gods" are generally described as the following "domains":

Life/Death, Travel, Nature, War, and Magic

I am trying to work up relationships between those five and the normal five senses:

Touch, Sight, Sound, Scent, and Taste

It needs to sound reasonable, and here is the current list:

Touch of Life / Touch of Death
Sights of Travel
Sounds of Nature
Scent of War
Taste of Magic

Any suggestions, including a whole different set of relationships, are welcome.

Thanks in advance.

2012-06-01, 09:45 PM
I would think "Scent of War" (smells of blood, sweat, etc.) and "Taste of Magic" (like a "taste of power")

Lord of Shadows
2012-06-02, 02:52 PM
I would think "Scent of War" (smells of blood, sweat, etc.) and "Taste of Magic" (like a "taste of power")

That sounds good, thanks!

Edit done.

Lord of Shadows
2012-06-04, 03:08 PM
Music used in a recent Tears of Blood playtest session.

This mix is called "Scenes from a Kvrin Picnic":

Evergreen Terrace - Mad World
Rob Zombie - Living Dead Girl
Saint Vitus - Dark World
Black Sabbath - War Pigs
Disturbed - Down With the Sickness
Godsmack - Voodoo
Drowning Pool - Bodies
Cryptic Wintermoon - A Coming Storm
The Bronx Casket Co. - Sweet Home Transylvania
Slipknot - Psychosocial

And for a Blast from the Past:

Rolling Stones - 2000 Light Years From Home


Lord of Shadows
2012-06-08, 04:30 AM
The Tears of Blood Campaign Setting received a fairly significant update today. Among the more important changes are:

Everyday Things on pg. 99 received a complete rewrite. The pages-long list of goods and services was removed and replaced with a shorter section describing the effects of The Weeping on the economy, and suggestions for how to handle buying and selling.

Special Materials on pg 105 also received a complete rewrite. The section was edited to avoid possible problems with non-OGL material, and to give a "Tears of Blood" feel to it. Readers are now referred to the Pathfinder Core Rules for materials that appear there. Sources were kept, but are now called "inspirations."

New material was added to the Halfling Pantheon, which begins on pg 281. This includes a fair amount of description, but also several new Domains and new spells.

New material was added to the Caltan section of the Human Pantheon, which begins on pg 293.

And strangely enough, the page count for the whole document remained the same, 388 pages. It must be a sign from The Five Gods that this update was divinely decreed. :smallsmile:

Work continues on new material for The Beneath and the Gnomes, which will likely be in the form of a Campaign Supplement.


Link: http://tears-of-blood.weebly.com/

Lord of Shadows
2012-06-08, 02:56 PM
Did a quick Spelling & Grammar edit today to try to clean things up a bit.

Also found and fixed a few other errors.


Tears of Blood (http://tears-of-blood.weebly.com/)

Lord of Shadows
2012-06-13, 02:14 PM
Several small updates have been made to the Campaign Setting. Mostly for continuity and to add some flavor text.


Lord of Shadows
2012-06-28, 06:25 PM
Minor Updates:

Both the Tears of Blood Campaign Setting and the Organizations in the World of Ursoule have both received minor edits.

The description of the Feldarin race at the bottom of page 12 of the Campaign Setting was altered slightly, and in the section on The Modern Empire and the Feldarin Orthodox Church beginning on page 193 now has the title listed for who would be in charge of each Feldarin zone. Sorry, titles only, no names.

The Organizations supplement had gotten out of sequence on its pages. The Table of Contents should now be correct.

Get the newst files always at the Tears of Blood Home Page (http://tears-of-blood.weebly.com/index.html).

If you heven't downloaded a copy of the campaign material recently, give it a look! All feedback is appreciated.

2012-06-30, 01:35 AM
You've put an extraordinary amount of work into this. It's a very professional job. Kudos!

Lord of Shadows
2012-06-30, 01:37 PM
You've put an extraordinary amount of work into this. It's a very professional job. Kudos!
Thank you. Credit must also be given to the group of people who first came up with this setting. They are the ones who did all the real work.

Lord of Shadows
2012-07-20, 05:30 PM
Minor tweaks and fiddling continue with the Tears of Blood campaign material, much of which is the result of ongoing playtesting. If you haven't checked out the materials lately, grab the latest versions of each at the home page: Tears of Blood Campaign Setting (http://tears-of-blood.weebly.com/)

Lord of Shadows
2012-08-21, 06:46 PM
Tweaks and fixes continue on the Tears of Blood campaign setting as we do playtesting. Due to the demise of a Dwarf in the party we now have a Kvrin Fleshwrought. Can't wait to see how that goes. (Already had to do some tweaking to the Fleshwrought bloodline)

Link: Tears of Blood Home Page (http://tears-of-blood.weebly.com/)

Lord of Shadows
2012-10-31, 04:40 PM
Tweaks and fixes continue on the Tears of Blood Campaign Setting as we do playtesting. One player started to take a Fighter in the direction of Paladin, but just couldn't get adjusted to the Law vs. Chaos thing rather than Good vs. Evil. He went for Barbarian instead.

The Fleshwrought Cleric is proving to be a viable combination, which was speculated in the original material. And since Animate Dead does not have the [Evil] descriptor in Tears of Blood, he has been making frequent use of 'shock troops.'

Link: Tears of Blood Home Page (http://tears-of-blood.weebly.com/)