View Full Version : Jimp's Campaign Setting

2007-11-18, 03:44 PM
About 2 years ago I had an idea for a campaign setting and typed up my progress on a site but then kinda forgot about it. Earlier today I found the files with all the setting ideas so I've decided to give it another chance.
The setting itself is pretty broad. Rather than specifics on each kingdom/city etc. I've gone for a general thing that is highly flexable. Cosmology is pretty essential, as you'll read. Because of the way it works out it's easy to introduce new races, classes, magic types or make the game high magic, medium magic or low/no magic. Deities and such are mostly core and with one or two custom extras.
For now I'll just copy-paste the posts I made before which detailed my progress in making the setting. There are probably some typos and spelling mistakes in there, I'll fix them at some stage.
I suppose I'm just doing this to get some feedback/input/comments on how it sounds. If you want to use the setting yourself ask me first please. Enjoy, I guess.

The Setting


Outset Ideas
The Planes: Structure and Magical Influence

I wanted the planes in my campaing setting to have a good deal of influence on the Material Plane though I did not want overly high magic levels too. Now I think that I have found a way to do this.

Initially I was going to model my cosmology's planar interactions on the Orrery structure (Manual of The Planes, pages 217 and 218). In this structure the planes rotate and depending on the season (and thusly stage of rotation) the Material Plane is more closely related to a certain Inner Plane and Outer Plane. Once more, on each seasons' solostice the planes becomes linked with Material Plane for 3 days, giving it an midly dominant alignment trait and a enhanced magic trait. For example, during spring the Material Plane is closer to the Plane of Air and a Chaotic Good Outer Plane named Choice (name taken from the book icon_razz.gif). For 3 days of the spring solostice the Material Plane is linked with the Plane of Air and Choice, giving it the midly Chaotic Good alignment trait and Enhanced Magic on all Air spells for the 3 days. More natural portals also open between Choice and the Material Plane during this period so visits each way would be more frequent.

However, with the sort of world I'm aiming for this structure didn't feel 'right'. So I done some reading and thinking and decided on a different structure.

The Myriad Cosmology
Now I am going to use the Myriad structure (Manual of The Planes, pages 213 to 215).
The Manual of The Planes has a good analogy for this planar structure: "Each plane can be thought of as a soap bubble in a cloud of similar bubbles. Any given bubble simultaneously touches at least one other bubble, but usually touched about five. . . a given plane can touch (be coexistant with) five other planes".
In this structure every plane is finite, though some planes may just be inexplicably huge and seem infinite they all have boundries. the planes also slowly swirl and move around, perhaps making new links, perhaps breaking away from other planes, perhaps becoming a lone individual plane for a few years until it drifts back into another clump.
This leads to some interesting possibilities for planar travel. As the Manual of The Planes states, each plane has it's own Ethereal plane and since the planes would normally be linked to other planes, their Ethereal planes would therefore also be linked. Natural links between planes would be more common, to a degree which the DM sees fit of course. Transplanar travel would then be commonly acomplished by using natural links and the spells Ethereal Jaunt and Etherealness. This structure features NO Astral Plane so Astral Projection cannot be used to travel between planes. The book also recomends that Plane Shift would either not work or be very limited in it's ability to travel between planes instantaneously.
How does all this relate to magic levels though? The Manual of The Planes also makes a recommendation for this variant that certain planes are sources of magical power and what accessable spells depend on your home plane's distance from these Source Planes. For example, the Source Plane Jhar 3rd is located in a clump of 5 closely linked planes (Jhar 1st-5th). Jhar 3rd is a source of Transumtation magic. The 4 other planes directly linked to it have full access to Transmutation spells, right up to epic levels. They also have Enhanced Magic traits in relation to Transmuation spells (Extended and Enlarged for example). The next few clumps out from these linked planes also have full access to epic level Transmutation spells (say, up to 7 links out). However, further out along the cosmos other planes lack the same access to the pure magical energies ivolved in Transmutation spells. Beyond the 7 links with epic spells, the maximum spell level accessable begins to drop. The next 3 links might only be able to cast up to 9th level spells, the next 3 up to 7th and the next 5 up to 3rd. Eventually there may even be a series of planes where no Source Plane is close enough to grant access to Transmutation spells. The only way to travel away from these planes is to find natural portals to other planes and to travel towards another plane that is close enough to a Transmutation Source Plane to grant access to spells. There would be multiple Source Planes for each school of magic, each one in another section of the cosmos.
This leads to some more interesting scenarios. What if there was a plane or series of planes with NO magic because they are all too far from any Source Plane? These planes might go centuries withough magic until the plane drifts close enough to allow access to magical energy. What about planes directly linked to Source Planes? These planes would deffinatly by important places for those who study or practice magic. Perhaps important enough to wage war over? Like if one powerful cabel of arch-mages wanted control over a portal with direct access to an Evocation Source Plane but a rival group of Draconic spellcasters ruled the land around the portal. What about the rarity of a single immense plane having direct links to multiple Source Planes? Magical beasts, magical power and practice and war over control of magical sources would all be common place on that plane.
As for the 'main' plane where my PCs would begin? One with access to all schools of magic (which would generally be the norm on the planes) though maybe only close enough to source planes to have access to 7th level spells. Planar travel would certainly exist though usually only by known natural portals (which organisations would try to control because of the power and possible income to be had from controling one) or by quick travel using Ethereal Jaunt or Ethereal Curtains (an item described in the Manual of The Planes).
Another interesting aspect this planar structure is the possibilities of exploration and the origin on races. Planar exploration would deffinatly be important because people would be interested in discovering more routes to Source Planes and other planes to explore or live on. Perhaps this is how some races arrived at certain planes; some magic users wanted to explore so they brought some settelers with them as they traveled from their home plane to nearby planes and the race spread from there.
The point of exploring for planar links also leads to another very interesting idea. What if some large sections of the cosmos drifted away from the rest and formed a sort of 'cosmological continant'? While there may be thousands and thousands of linked planes, what if a section of say 10 planes drifted away together from the rest? People on these planes would not be able to reach the rest of the planes again until the clumb drifted back and linked with them. Perhaps these planes could drift away forever and loose all access to magic and become alot more like the world we know today, using advanced technology instead because there was no magic to be used. What if these planes one day returned to the main 'flow' of planes? VERY interesting possibilites there blink.gif However, it's best not to dwell on that unless I plan on using it at some stage icon_razz.gif
I probably should have mentioned earlier that because of the many planes involved in a Myriad structure, the vast majority of them would be regular Material Planes with no special alignment traits or elemental traits, though some planes may have special traits depending on their relation to Source Planes, Elemental Planes, Energy Planes or the make up of the plane itself.

As for spell casting classes within this system, I'm going to stay with the non-magical Paladin, Ranger and Bard (AKA, the Expert) but leave Clerics, Wizards etc as they are regularly because of the influence of the position of the planes on accessable magic levels.

So this concludes my first update concerning the planes and their influence on magic levels. At a later stage I'll look at more aspects of this, such as Planar Emmigration and the Origins of The Races.

Planar Structure and Formation
Origins: Planar Formation

Every Material Plane is differently shaped but similar traits apply to every Material Plane:
Normal Time
Finite, Bordered
Alterable Morphic
Mildly Neutral Aligned
Normal Magic, dicatated by distance from a Source Plane
A Material Plane's dominant energy depends on wether or not it is directly linked to an Elemental Plane. If it is, it gains that plane's energy type as a Minor Dominant trait. If not, it has the No Dominant Energy Trait. A Material Plane's Gravity trait varies with the make up of the plane, but the vast majority hold the Normal Gravity trait.
Unless otherwise stated, a plane's light comes from the energies that are stored in it's natural boundries. These energies glow a certain colour, most regularly a blue, white or turqoise colour but any colour is possible. Often the energies rotate around the plane, which causes day and night effects in different parts of the plane. In Material Planes formed with Positive Energy, there is much more energy in the borders so the 'days' are alot longer than 'nights', if there is night at all. Some planes' borders may be too far away from the main physical parts of the plane to really make any difference or the plane's borders may glow black. In these cases light usually comes from another physical source within the plane, if at all.

Planar Classification
This is how a plane's size is measured. All plane's are measured against the largest known planes in existance, the 6 original Elemental Planes: Fire, Earth, Water, Air, Plane of Positive Energy and Plane of Negative Energy. The vast majority of other planes are, however, smaller than these. The size classification goes as follows:
Collosal = 1
Gargantuan = 7/8
Huge = 6/8
Large = 5/8
Medium = 4/8
Small = 3/8
Tiny = 2/8
Diminutive = 1/8 or less
In terms of it's use in a PC world, the first Deity of knowledge was the first inhabitant of the planes to treck accross planes to develop this system and share it.

When two different Elemental Planes come in contact with one another, a new plane is formed. What general geographical traits this plane has depends on what Elemental Planes meet during it's formation. Fire and Earth often create ruggad enviroments with numerous mountains, gorges and volcanos. Fire and Water often create worlds with harsh extremes in each area. Fire and Air often create wide open worlds extremes in some areas and calm elsewhere. Earth and Water often create worlds with huge seas and a few ruggad landmasses. Earth and Air often create large worlds with vast open airs and floating continants. Air and Water often create enviroments filled with 'Aired Water' which is breatable by animals who usually could not breate water (see the Stormwrack book from WotC for details on this water). These are all generalisations, however, and exceptions do exist. If three different Elemental Planes come together, the plane they create is 'Earthlike' but with an extreme from the missing Elemental Plane absent. For example, Earth, Fire and Air may create a plane filled with floating landmasses of ruggad terrain and valcanos, but no streams of water. If four different Elemental Planes come together then an 'Earthlike' Material Plane is created, with aspects of the 4 raw elements in balance. These general formulas give an idea of what kinds of planes can be formed.

Negative Energy + Positive Energy = This creates a Dead Plane of Planar Classification Small size.

Fire, Earth, Air or Water + Positive Energy = This creates a new Elemental Plane of whatever element came in contact with the Positive Energy Plane. The size of the new Elemental Plane starts as Diminutive and grows the longer the 'parent' Elemental Plane stays in contact with it. It cannot grow larger than it's 'parent' plane. The Positive and Negative Energy Planes are unique and cannot be created.

2 to 4 of either Fire, Earth, Air or Water + Positive Energy = This creates a new Material Plane of at least Small size. The Material Plane continues to grow in size as long as at least 2 different Elemental Planes stay in contact. These planes are much 'livelier' than most Material Planes, because of the infusion of Positive Energy. Plants may grow quicker and larger, the weather may be more extreme or physical features may be naturally larger or vaster.

Fire, Earth, Air or Water + Negative Energy = This creates a Plane of Shadow, which immediatly pushes the two planes apart and bonds to the nearest Material Plane in the stream.

Any 2 to 3 of Fire, Earth, Air or Water = This creates a new Material Plane with geographical traits common to whatever Elemental Planes create it. It begins at Planar Classification Diminutive size and continues to grow as long as at least 2 different Elemental Planes stay in contact with it. If 2 more Elemental Planes ever come into contact with the plane it will grow once again, possibly with new features different from the originals. For example, if a plane was formed from the Fire and Earth planes and it later grew when it contact with the Air and Water planes, the new geography may be radically different or it may just become more hospitible, like the following formation type.

Fire + Earth + Air + Water = This creates an 'Earthlike' Material Plane of at least Planar Classification Small size. The longer the 4 different Elements stay in contact, the larger the plane grows.

Unless the natural wildlife of the plane makes it otherwise, breathing is possible on all Material Planes and Dead Planes.

There is NO Astral Plane

Every plane has an Ethereal Plane and the Ethereal Planes overlap just like their home planes, though the borders are far easier to cross. Deep Ethereal does not exist. Ethereal Planes are only linked to other Ethereal Planes if their home planes are linked.

Planes of Shadow drift just like the normal planes, but drift coexistantly. What I mean by this is that they act like a normal Plane of Shadow would, coexisting with the Material Plane in a similar fashion to the Ethereal Plane, but they too drift around the cosmos like the normal planes. They can drift with the planar flow or against. They are co existant with whatever parts of whatever planes they are in contact with. As such, it is possible for half of a Plane of Shadow to be coexistant with one side of one plane and with the other side of an adjacent plane. All Planes of Shadow are linked through the Deep Shadow system, which connects all the Planes of Shadow in the cosmos. Traveling through Deep Shadow is dangerous but enough with exploring one can find links to any other Plane of Shadow anywhere else in the cosmos. Planes of Shadow must always be coexistant with at least a part of one plane. A Plane of Shadow cannot exist without being coexistant with another plane. This is because a Plane of Shadow's Morphic landscape shapes itself to a version of the area it's coexistant with. As such, it cannot exist on it's own because it cannot shape it's own landscape. Only the Deep Shadow exists without being coexistant because it has the ability to form it's own, dull landscape.

Odds and Ends

As the planes drift, they come into contact with eachother. Plane that are in contact are both coexistant and cotermonious. They exist in the same space of the cosmos, but they remain seperate planes. Natural links can form accross the borders. Borders are any area where the two planes are cotermonious. These are usually at the edges of the planes, but can just as easily form at any coexistant overlapping area. The Ethereal Planes of Material Planes can be used to travel form one plane to a connecting one at any area where there is a coexistant overlap.
Natural links are the only links that pure magical energy can be channeled through from a Source Plane.
Planes of Shadow are all linked through Deep Shadow. Planes of Shadow bond over the closest plane to their point of creation and move through the stream from there. Planes of Shadow can be smaller than their 'parent plane' but not bigger.
When a plane is naturally linked to one of the element filled Elemental Planes (fire, water, air, earth) they gain the Minor Energy Dominnant trait. When naturally linked to an energy filled Elemental Plane (Positive, Negative), life either blooms more than normal of withers faster than normal, depending on which energy plane it is linked too and what creatures it affects.

Demiplanes are insignificantly small personnal spaces linked to the plane they are created on. They are only linked cotermoniously and thusly can't be entered by using Ethereal spells. Demiplanes are created by the epic magic spell Genesis (Planar Handbook I think). As such, if the plane a Demiplane connects to ever drifts out of the reach of epic spells, the Demiplane stops existing. Any people or objects on the plane are violiently shifted back to the connected plane. Apart from these exceptions, Demiplanes act as normal.

Deities and Magic
Deities can use any spell they know up to 9th level and worshippers can cast divine spells up to 9th level if they on the same plane. This is because of the natural Divine Energy in the Deities' blood. Apart from this though, worshippers need to be in the required proximity to a Source Plane in order to cast any spell, divine or arcane. Deities need to be close to a Source Plane to be able to cast epic spells.

Magical Beasts and Source Planes
Magical Beasts cannot live on Magicless planes. Magical Beasts can have a number of HD = (maximum spell level castable on the plane)x2. When on a plane with access to epic spells a Magica Beast has no HD limit. A Magical Beast with more HD than normally allowed on a plane is treated as if it had negative levels, effectivly decreasing it's power to the maximuim available on that plane. One this beast returns to a plane that can accomodate it's total HD it is returned o full strength.

Deities and Altering Planes
Deities must alter a plane physically, just like anybody else. There are no Divinely Morphic planes.

What Borders Feel Like
Every plane has a physical borders. These borders are solid, so falling against one is treated just like falling and hitting the ground. The borders are warm to the touch. Touching a border gives you a buzzing, tickling sensation from the energies constantly flowing in the borders. While touching a border for long periods of time cannot kill a person, it can cause burns, rashes or queasyness.

See the Magic section for more on Source Planes.


Source Planes
Source Planes

What are they?
Source Planes are planes consisted entirely of pure magical energy.

What do they do?
Source Planes fuel all magic throughout the planes. They supply the magical energy needed for spells of different levels to be cast. They also have an effect on the strength of innately magical beasts.

What does a Source Plane look like?
A Source Plane is an open space filled with pure magical energy that is constantly in violent motion, flowing and reacting .

How is a Source Plane created?
A Source Plane is created when all 6 different Elemental Planes (Air, Earth, Fire, Water, Positive Energy, Negative Energy) come into contact with one another at a single point. This exact linking point between the six elements channels even amounts of elemental energy into this single point. This mixture of the exact amounts of pure elemental energy is what creates pure magical energy. The longer the Elemental Planes stay in perfect equal contact over this one point, the larger the Source Plane will grow. The initial reaction between the pure elements results in a violent burst and the creation of a new plane. This new plane expands instantly into the Planar Classification size Small. The second the exact equality between the flowing pure elemental energy is broken, the Source Plane stops growing. Once the Source Plane stops growing the surrounding Elemental Planes drift away from the newly created Source Plane.

How far can a Source Plane's magic reach?
How many planes out Source Plane's magic can reach and the maximum available energy depends on the size of the plane
Small: Epic = 3. 9th = 4. 7th = 7. 4th = 11. 1st = 15. Cantrip = 17
Medium: Epic = 4. 9th = 5. 7th = 8. 4th = 12. 1st = 16. Cantrip = 18
Large: Epic = 5. 9th = 6. 7th = 9. 4th = 13. 1st = 17. Cantrip = 19
Huge: Epic = 6. 9th = 7. 7th = 10. 4th = 14. 1st = 18. Cantrip = 20
Any plane further away than the Cantrip limit is considered to be Magicless. The rules for using magic items on Magicless planes were detailed in a previous post.
Any plane that has a direct, natural link to a Source Plane gains the Enhanced Magic: Enlarged and Extended traits.

Can someone travel to a Source Plane?
Yes, through any natural links between a Source Plane and any surrounding, linked planes. Source Planes have no Ethereal Plane, however, so traveling by using Ethereal spells is impossible.

Can someone survive on a Source Plane?
Yes, though only temporarily. Upon viewing a Source Plane initially a traveller must make a Fort save (DC 15) or be temporarily blinded for 2d4 rounds by the brightness of the energy. Every round a traveller spends on the plane they are buffeted by pure magical energy and hurt for 2d10 damage. This bypasses Damage Reduction, because of it's sheer supernatural force and make up, Spell Resistance, because it is pure energy, and Energy/Elemental Resistances, because it is a seperate kind of energy created by the perfect mixture of all other kinds of energy.

What Planar Traits does a Source Plane have?
Objective Directional Gravity
Normal Time
Finite, Self Contained
Highly Morphic
No Dominant Energy
Mildly Neutral Aligned
Wild Magic
Enhanced Magic: Enlarged, Extended, Quickened, Maximised, Empowered, Stilled, Silent

Source Planes 2
Dealing with some questions that arose after the first Source Plane installment

Can source planes be destroyed?
No. A Source Plane can, however, die out. Similar to a star, a Source Plane has inexplicabbly huge amounts of disposable energy within it but it can all run out. From the second a Source Plane is created it begins to send it's energy out to nearby planes. Though it may take millions or even billions of years the energy can run out. As energy runs out, the plane's Planar Classification shrinks. Once a Source Plane looses enough energy to reduce it's size and classification to Tiny it is considered to be a Dead Plane. This can take millenia but a small number of recorded cases have occured throughout documented planar history.

What is a Dead Plane?
A Dead Plane is the remnants of a Source Plane that has used up it's magical energy over the course of millions of years.
A Dead Plane resembles an Elemental Plane of Air. It is a vast, open, empty space with a constantly dim glow from it's self contained edges. A traveller can survive indefinatly on a Dead Plane, unlike on a Source Plane, as long as they have access to nourishment. The danger from the pure energy is gone.
A Dead Plane has the following Planar Traits:
Objective Directional Gravity
Normal Time
Finite, Self Contained
No Dominant Energy
Mildly Neutral Aligned

Can anyone or anything force elemental planes together in such a way as to create a source plane?
No, the movement of the planes is an essential aspect of the very inner workings of the universe itself that not even deities can control in any way. Planar movements are natural and cannot be forced.

Can anyone or anything hold elemental planes together to grow a source plane?
No, the Elemental Planes' movement cannot be controlled, just like any other plane.

Is there any way to grow a sourceplane after it has been created?
If the 6 different Elemental Planes come in contact at 6 equidistant points withtin a cubic area of part of a Source Plane then pure magical energy will once again be created. This can increase the size of an existing Source Plane and revive a Dead Plane. The same process occurs as with the creation of a new Source Plane. If the Elemental Planes stay in the correct positions after the intial burst of energy then the plane will continue to grow until the equality is broken.

Can you shrink one?
Yes, the shrinking of a Source Plane occurs naturally over the course of millions of years as it's energy is sent out to magic users, items and beasts in nearby planes.

Magic Items and Magicless Planes

Available Magic
So now that I have decided on how I will regulate magic levels and how the planes are structred, how will this affect specific spells and magic items?
In the previous post I already discussed how Source Planes control the availability of magic levels. The exact mechanics of Source Planes will be dealt with later on.
What about magic items? How will they work on planes that don't have access to the nessecary spell levels that the item uses? I'm going to deal with them as follows:
Wands: Wands will work the same as they do on planes with access to the needed magic levels. The Wand has an internal store of the magical energy needed to use a spell, so it does not need to drain energy from elsewhere. Wands can use their stored spells a number of times equal to their remaining charge as per normal. Wands with a constant effect, like the Immovable Rod, are treated like Constant Wonderous Items as described below.
Activated Wonderous Items: These items will gain a number of charges = (Creator's Effective Caster Level)x2 . Every time the item is activated it uses up one charge. Every function the item has uses one charge. If the item already depends on charges for use, like some staffs, then it uses the normal amount of charges. If an item uses up all it's charges then it is still considered a magical item, though none of it's functions are accessable. When it's owner returns to a plane which can access the Source magic needed then the item recharges naturally at a rate of 1 charge every 12 hours. When the item is recharged up to it'x maximum [(Creator's Effective Caster Level)x2] then it's access to the Source Plane is fully restored and it no longer uses up charges to be activated.
Constant Wonderous Items: These items will gain a number of charges = (Creator's Effective Caster Levek)x5. 1 charge is automatically used every 30 minutes. If an item uses up all it's charges then it is still considered a magical item, though none of it's functions are accessable. When it's owner returns to a plane which can access the Source magic needed then the item recharges naturally at a rate of 1 charge every 12 hours. When the item is recharged up to it'x maximum [(Creator's Effective Caster Level)x5] then it's access to the Source Plane is fully restored and it no longer uses up charges in it's use. A Constant Wonderous Item which stores other objects, like a Bag of Holding, has a 50% chance of instantly ejecting all it's held items out into a random adjacent 5ft square and a 50% of the items becoming collectivly trapped in the item until it is fully recharged. If the items become trapped they have a 10% chance every hour of being destroyed as the item's limited imbued magic fails to support the magical space. If this does happen the item is still reusable once fully recharged, but the items that were destroyed cannot be recovered.
Magical Staves: These are treated like Wands. If the Staff has extra abilities beyond extra spells (like the AC bonus on a Staff of Archmagi) then treat it like a Constant or Activated Wonderous Item, depending on the kind of ability the staff has.
Potions and Magical Poisons: Treated like Wands.
Magic Weapons and Armors: Treated like Constant Wonderous Items. If a magical weapon, shield or suit of armor runs out of charges it retains it's Masterwork bonuses. A weapon or armor with Spell-Like Abilities is treated the same as a Constant Wonderous Item but using the Ability also uses up one charge.
Magical Constructs: Treated like Constant Wonderous Items. If they run out of charges they remain stationary and 'shut-down' wherever they used their final charge.
What about a spellcaster's Familiar? As long as a spellcaster and their Familiar are on a plane with some access to a Source Plane, even if it's just 1st level spells of only one school, their Familiar retain's it's extra abilities. Any Spell-Like Abilities granted by Familiar Spell or similar feats still require access to the correct spell school and level. If a spellcaster and his Familiar are on a plane with no access to magic they retain their special bond but loose any other Familiar benefits. These benefits are regained once the spellcatser and Familiar return to a plane with access to magic.
Since there is no Astral Plane, spells that utilise it, such as Teleport, Dimension Door, Summon MOnster and Astral Projection, no longer function. I will however find a way to make Summon Monster spells work.
Spells that use the Plane of Shadow only function on planes that have links to a Plane of Shadow.

And that's all for now. Future updates as things unfold


Demons and Devils and Dragons and Halflings
Origins: Demons & Devils, Evil Dragons & Halflings

Demons and Devils
Just like many other major races, these races were crated by deities. How they came to be as they are, however, is a story much different from other races.
There was once a group of deities filled with malice, loathing and envy for all other deities. They wanted power, but knew they could not take it from the other deities by themselves. They birthed a race, combining their greatest physical attribiutes together in their creation. They raised the first spawns of this new race and taught them their beliefs and ideal, filling them with hatred, evil and a lust for power from the second the race was created.
This, however, was the cause of those dieities' downfall. Their race used their teachings against them. They planned, horded and grew powerful. Lead by the strongest, the entire race rebelled against it's creators and slayed them without mercy. The leaders drank the blood and devoured the corpses of the dead dieties, absorbing all their divine power in doing so. These leaders became deities themselves, and called themselves the Archfiends.
The Archfiends and their followers saw this as only the beginning of their quest for power and dominance. The lesser fiends admired the Archfiends for their power, ambition and how they shared their vision of fiendish rule over all.
The Archfiends lead their followers in their quest for dominance. however, The Archfiends' own lust for power lead them to begin plotting against eachother. Quarreling over ideas and practices, the fiends split. One half followed a sect of Archfriends calling itself 'Demons' while the other half followed the Archfirends calling themselves 'Devils'
In time, the differences betweem the fiends grew until Demons and Devils became their true racial names instead of just gang names. While they both began as the same race, the centuries of breeding has filtered the races out into two very seperate physical sets of beings.
Both Demons and Devils continue their quest for power and dominance over all other beings, eachother included.

Dragons and Halflings
Strange to consider such difference races under the same heading, no? Well, no, it is not. The Halfling race is but a mere husk of it's former glory. Reduced to the status of either dragon slaves or kind-hearted refugees trying to flee their draconic overlords, Halflings are a race both thriving and endangered.

The deitiy who created the Halflings was both powerful and benevolent. She is Yondalla. She created the Halfling race and raised it. She stressed the importance of harmony and hapiness in their lives, the important of bravery in face of enemies and the importance of joyous traditions. The race prospered under her guidance and spread out to some nearby planes.
The Halflings were often well accepted wherever they settled. They were a fun race who valued their own customs and traditions while remaining respectful of other's own traditions at the same time. While sometimes mischevious, they were generally seen as a postivie addition to any community.
Their migration was cut short, however, as the Dragons divded.

The first deities were the Draconic deities. They were powerful, nobel and intelligent beings. Like many that followed, however, the Draconic deities found their interests conflicting.
The Draconic deities created the first race to ever grace the planar stream, the Dragons. Created in the image of the deities with different scale colours for each breed, the Dragons were the first sentinant beings to begin living accross the planes. Thier deities explored with them, learning as they went.
The deities began to argue, however. Bahamut started to value kindness between Dragons and the upholding of their nobel ways. Tiamat started to value the sheer power of the Dragons and how they could use it to rule all things to come. Dahzrill valued neither extreme of good or evil. Dahzrill valued life experiences. His attempts to keep peace between Bahamut and Tiamat resulted in a battle between the three deities. The battle raged but stopped when something amazing happened. Dahzrill was slain by the combined attacks of Bahamut and Tiamat and his body lay lifeless between them. The two deities looked upon the comrade who had fallen trying to settle their differences. Dahzrill's body burst apart in a glorious flash of energy and, to the surprise of all the Draconic race, the whisps of energy from this blast converged in a single place and Dahzrill's body reformed without a scratch on it. All were amazed, especially Dahzrill. He told them of what he had breifly seen as he died. He saw the images of the few Dragons who had died in their explorations. One who died in the water, one who died after a cliff fall, one who died in a volcano and the others too. He told them of how they followed the deities still, even after death and how some wanted to stay in their service while others became one with the plane. He told Bahamut and Tiamat that if they promised to stop fighting eachother then he would look after all the Dragons who die. Both deities agreed to stop their fighting but neither would ever consider the other an ally again. Dahzrill made a comprimise. Those who agreed with Bahamut would travel in one diretion with him and travel to the next plane in that direction. Those who agreed with Tiamat would do the same in the opposite direction. The plane between would become a place where dragons could die naturally and peacefully and live out their afterlife if they wished. It was never to be a place of conflict again. Both agreed and went their seperate ways, the Draconic race splitting in half. Tiamat's 'chromatic' followers went one way while Bahamut's 'metallic' followers went the other. Dahzrill remained on the plane between and began his work caring for the dying and deceased.

The direction that Tiamat travelled in, however, eventually lead him to the plane where Yondalla had created the Halflings. The first thing on the 'chromatic' Dragons' minds was domination, and so it was done.
Using their sheer archaic strength they overpowered the Halfling race and took complete control of the plane. Yondalla tried her best to defend the race from the onslaught but fell as she protected some Halflings fleeing through a natural portal to a neighbouring plane. She was revived like Dahzrill was, but part of her divine essence had been absorbed by Tiamat and she was weakened severely. Thankfully the Human deity Kord came to her aid. He had been exploring with some humans in the neighbouring plane when they came accross the fleeing Haflings. Kord slew many evil Dragons as Yondalla weakly fled to the next plane. He soon followed her and temporarily blocked the portal from the other side with a mountain of boulders.
The Evil Dragons took complete control of Yondalla's old home plane, enslaving the Halflings that were left. They bred the Halflings and carried them as servants and, sometimes, food. They eventually broke the blockage to the neighbouring plane and began to conquer again, taking a total of 7 planes before being stopped by a mighty blockade of celestial creatures. They ceased their advancing; though ocasionaly evil Dragons escape the blockade and flee into hiding accross the planes to breed. They had enslaved the vast majority of the Hafling race and kept them as such. Revolutions were attempted, but each one was quelled quickly.
Yondalla and her few hundred remaining Haflings fled to Kord's home plane. Yondalla still stays there, the majoirty of her divine power drained by Tiamat. She is too weak to try to reclaim her race's planes. Kord gave Yondalla her own realm on his plane. She stays there, tended by some of her petitioners. The Halfling race has it's largest settlement around where Yondalla stays, though even after the centuries it is still a relativly small place. Members of the race have travlled to various places accross the planes looking for safety and refuge from the evil Dragons.

Halflings Today
The Halfling race is quite populus, though about 80% of it is enslavd on planes controlled by evil Dragons. The other 20% is scattered accross the planes in various places. The free members of the race are slowly begining to reassert themselves as an important race, though the enslavement of the vast majority of their kind cannot be ignored.
Someday the Halflings hope to free their bretheren, when Yondalla is stong once again. Though this may nto be for milenia.
Many free Halflings join Yondalla after they die. The enslaved Halflings, however, only know of tales of their deity. When enslaved Haflings die they often enjoy the afterlife before searching for their deity's current residence and joining the planar stream. Enslaved Halflings worship Yondalla lightly but rarely since the evil Dragons would kill them if they found out. Tales of Yondalla among enslaved Halflings are told by oral tradition and as such are rare treats for the opressed race.

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And there we have it, 4 plot-important races.

Continued on the next post.

2007-11-18, 03:45 PM
The Setting, continued

Dieties and Afterlife

Dieties and Races
Origins: Deities and Races

The Deities
Deities are created. Deities are the result of the combining of all kinds of energy and a final, unique, energy called Divine Energy. Divine Energy is the perfect, equal combination of all other kinds of energy, namely Elemental (fire, water, earth, air) and Pure energies (Positive, Negative, Source Magic). This perfect mixture of all the energies and Divine Energy created the first sentinant humanoid creatures in existance, the first deities. When all 6 Elemental Planes and a Source Plane link perfectly equally over a single point and when the energies from all of them flow in together, Divine Energy is created and a Deitiy is born from it.
Deities are made up of all the energies in perfect balance and brought to life by Divine Energy. They are infused with Divine Energy and it flows through their bodies. This Divine Energy is where Clerics get their spells. The natural production of Divine Energy is what seperates Deities from other beings.
Deities are immortal, but not invincible. They can be killed by their wounds or by poisons, just like anybody else can. They cannot die of age however. When a Deity dies the Divine Energy bursts out 5d6 rounds after it's death and the Deity's body vanishes. After it bursts out, it then reforms and recreates the Deity's body. This essentially revives the Deity completely. If someone drinks at least half of a Deity's blood then they can become Demigods with limited Divine Energy. If someone drinks all of a Deity's blood then they absorb all of the Deity's Divine Energy and become a Deity. This is the only way for mortals to becomes Deities.
Deities are immune to elemental and pure magical damage because they are born out of a mixture of all the elements, energies, magical energy and Divine Energy.
Deities are born whenever all 6 Elemental planes and a Source Plane come into perfectly equal contact over one point. When this happens, Divine Energy is created and it unites the different forces into a Deity. The longer the planes stay in perfectly equal contact, the more Deities are born. This is an incredibly rare event, only happening 3 times in the known history of the main stream of the cosmos.
Divine Rank is how powerful a Deity is. It relates to how much Divine Energy is naturally part of the Deity. Most Deities have a Divine Rank of 4. Demigods have a Rank of 1. More powerful Deities would have a Divne Rank of 6-10

The Races
Every sentinent race is created in the image of a Deity. A race can then go on and develop it's own customs and ideals, but most races usually stay around their Deity's home plane until it helps them settle on other planes.
Creating a race in the image of a Deity drops the Deity's Divine Rank by 5 because it uses a large amount of Divine Energy. More than one Deity can contribute to the creation of a race. Each Deity must contribute the same amount of Divine Energy and thusly, each Deity looses the same amount of Divine Rank. For example, if 5 Deities contributed then each would loose 1 Divine Rank. When a new race is created, 4 members of this race are created for each Divine Rank used in their creation. If a Deity created a new race and used 8 ranks in doing so, 32 members would be created.
For example, lets take the Elven race.
The Elven gods were created the first time Divine Energy was created, along with many other Deities. The Elven gods travelled through the Plane of Water and found a Large Material Plane that was full of forests and had vast, clear oceans. They decided to settle on this plane. After exploring the plane, they thought it would be great to introduce new life to the planes. The leader created a new race in his image, the Elves. He lost 5 Divine Ranks in doing so. The first 20 Elves were born. The Elven deities raised them and showed them the world. The race bred and grew over the years. Eventually, one of the Elven deities helped the Elves by showing them how to use natural border links to travel accross the plane. He helped them settle in one some nearby planes. Since then the race has grown and expanded accross the cosmos.

This is pretty much all that I can think of that needs to be said about the mechanics of Deity creation and Race creation

Dieties and Afterlife
Deities and The Afterlife: Revisions and Updates
Any details changed in this entry overwrites what was said in the previous afterlife entry.

When someone dies, do they automatically enter the afterlife?
Yes. Their soul begins at the very spot they died. If someone is to become a Petitioner they instantly travel to their deity's home plane.

Is there a downside to the afterlife?
Yes and no.
While you are free to do as you please, if you lead a particularly evil life or have particularly powerful enemies then your soul may attract unwanted attention. The deity of death often punishes those who showed little respect for life by making them servants to either him or by giving them to other beings who may be interested in soul food, such as demons.
It is important to note at this point that the deity of death is not an evil deity. Death is a natural an inevitable thing for all beings of the cosmos bar a certain few breeds. The deity of death respects life and death and sees the afterlife as the reward, or punishment, for how life was lead. He is a true neutral deity. He does not promote death or beleive in activly killing others for his own needs. He merely deals who those who do die accordingly. He recognises the fast that death and killing is a part of life accross the planes and as such only punishes those who actively went out of their way to kill others; for example, a mass murderer.

Do all races share the same kind of afterlife?
No. The sole exception are the Dragons. The death of a dragon is dealt with solely by one of the Draconic deities. Otherwise, when a dragon dies it's soul travels to the home of it's deity as per usual. Many dragons opt to join the planar stream soon after their deaths, having lead long and rich lives.

Do animals have an afterlife?
Generally, animals prefer to instantly return to nature and rejoin the planar stream. Familiars and Animal Companions share greater bonds to their masters and as such can accompany their masters in the afterlife, if they wish.

What about Undead and the afterlife?
Necromancy spells that create udnead only animate lifeless corpses with Negative energy. The soul remains seperate and in no way part of the spell.
A Vampire's soul is released after it's death.
Any undead made from the tainted souls of other beings, such as Bodaks, Ghosts or Ghasts, have the original being's soul released after it's death.
Liches have their souls released after their permanant death, though their soul remains tainted and usually ends up as demon food or devil trade goods.
Undead that are not made from tainting the living physical body or soul of a creature are treated like undead created by spell. For example, the Walking Graveyard creature is a collection of corpses animated by Negative energy. It is not made by tainting a soul or living creature.

So all the known races were created by different deities?
No. Alot of unique races were born but some are the result of adaption or interbreeding between races, among other reasons. The Half-Elf race is the most famous example of interbreeding. The different species of Troll and Giant are the most famous examples of adaption.

The Deities: Lifestyles, Worship and Afterlives

After the deities formed, they began to explore the newly created cosmos to see what could be found. They developed their own interests and agendas.
Eventually each deity settles on a plane which they called home. They spent their time shaping their planes to their desires, using arcane magic, physical might and divine magic. While no planes are naturally Divenly Morphic, some deities learned how to use their divine abilities to shape sections of a plane into rough shapes. Some deities settled close to eachother, or even on the same plane.
Once happy with their home plane and dwellings, some deities created races of sentinant beings (covered in a previous update).
Deities usually concern themselves with futhering their own goals. For example, the deity of knowledge may search out new books or the deity of travel and exploration may spend his days traveling down every path he finds.
Deities who create new races often spend alot of time with the members who live on their home plane. For example, the creator of the Elves may spend some of his time every day talking to the elves around his house or sharing stories with other Elven communities on his home plane.
Deities sometimes meet with other deities to share stories, experiences and beleifs. This leads to some divine friendships and some divine rivalries. While deities rarely engage in combat against eachother, except some friendly ones who may contest eachother to feats of skill, but when they do it is often a long and violent affair whch involves many of the followers of both sides.

Do deities know they are being worshipped?
Yes. To a deity, worship feels like a warm glow inside their bodies. It is a comforting and empowering feeling. Deities with no worshippers may become depressed from the lack of this feeling. Deities cannot die from lack of worship, they are always divine beings unless permanantly slain (as described in a previous update).
Why would a mortal worship a deity?
The most common reasons are because they may share in the beleifs or intrests of the deity, they are members of a race the deity created, they share similar goals to the deity. Other reasons are always possibilites. Some individuals prefer not to worship any deity. Some people worship several deities. Some people devote all their faith to one deity. It is always a personal choice.
What is there to gain from worshiping a deity?
Deities are physical beings that live among the people of the Stream. They can meet their worshipers if they want. Their divine influence can instill hope, confidence, faith, encouragement and in some cases even luck. Worshipping a deity gives some people a feleing of confidence, of companionship, of encouragement and of releif. The knowledge that there is a divine being lookig over someone with your interests or of your species is a feeling that comforts many common folk. People who worship a deity often eneter the afterlife on a deities home plane too.

The Afterlife
Is there an afterlife?
Yes. When someone dies their soul leaves their body and enters the flow of the planes. A soul can travel freely through the planar stream. Souls can feel every possible senesation from racing through the sky at incredible speeds to experincing what it is like to be a raindrop falling from a cloud to the earth below. A soul can wish any feeling or sensaton upon itself as it travels where it whims. Souls exist on a level beyond mortal manipulation. The deity of death can manipulate souls but much prefers not to. Souls cannot be returned to their deceased bodies. A such, ressurection spells do not exist in this cosmology. If a soul wishes, it may join the planar stream and become part of the pure planar energies that make up the cosmos.
If you worship a deity, how is the afterlife different?
Usually one's soul would travel straight to the deities home plane. A soul can then permanantly manifest itself as a Petitioner (Manual of The Planes) to that deity on the deities home plane. Deities often discuss matters with their petitioners and give them tasks. For example, the deity of knowledge may send a petitioner off to find a copy of the latest novel by an author. Petitioners are only hurt by wounds inflicted by Divine magic, such as in the Inflict, Harm or Flame Strike spells. When a petitioner dies it becomes part of the Divine Energy that makes up it's deitiy. If a soul wishes it can become part of the Divine Energy that makes up deities. This works the same as become part of the planar stream. Apart from this, the afterlife does not change much.

Thanks for reading. All feedback is welcome. I doubt I'll go into detail on specific kingdoms and so on, but rather locations of interest such as major cities, planar links and warsites.

2007-11-19, 03:04 PM
hmm you sya draconic gods, what about Io? Also I realy like your cosmology and diety systems. By the way is alignment the same in your setting?

2007-11-19, 03:20 PM
At the time of writing those section I had not read about Io, but on a whole I don't think it will fit in. The 3 that are there work fine for me.
I'll have the good-evil axis but no law-chaos axis. I want the conflict between good and evil to be a pretty prominent idea.