View Full Version : Ashkardian Races I: The Sidhe

2007-12-22, 07:33 PM
This is the first descripton of an Ashkardian Race - the Sidhe, the Ashkardian equivalent of what are in ost settings Elves. Only motre sophisticated. And blasť.
The Ashkardia main thread can be found here (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/newreply.php?do=newreply&noquote=1&p=3691621) and I hope you read it (and commend on it I need some feedback).

Sidhe (Elves) - Short description
One of the two Elder Races, the Sidhe lives on Ashkardia since the dawn of time. They are nearly immortal and only die because of violence, never because of age. Sidhes are masters of magic and arts and have created the most astonishing pieces of art known to any sentient species. Sidhe tend to recognize their immortality more as a curse than a gift, and fight an eternal conflict against the creeping boredom that comes over than when all experiences start to repeat. Elves are known to be beautiful, easily bored, very cunning and often very cruel; their century old conflict with the Trolls have reduced them to a shadow of their former greatness, and by now both elder races have lost their predominance to the minor race of humans. The remaining Shide lives in separated and breathtaking beautiful garden palaces in the far west of Ashkardia.
Sidhe are taller but much slighter built than humans, but resemble them more than any other Acadian species; like all Ashkardians, Sidhe are vulnerable to iron, but they are one of the most powerful magical species in Ashkardia.

2007-12-22, 07:35 PM
The Sidhe
The nature of the Sidhe
Sidhe, Elves World Travellers – the Fair Folk, the Euminides – no other Ashkardian race has sparked that many and deep fascination in the newcomers as the Sidhe. Even the most nimble and elegant human looks clumsy and awkward next to a Sidhe, even the greatest craftsmen and artists envy their aptitude and sense of beauty. Their music is of ethereal beauty, their Garden Palaces are breathtakingly beautiful. But behind their always young faces and their well-proportioned smiles, the Sidhes’ souls are slowly rotting.
The immortality of the Sidhe is their greatest blessing and their greatest curse at the same time. Their unaging bodies allows them to achieve the perfection in all areas of life the Sidhe strive for. But at the same time, it sears them, every experience becomes the shadow of thousand experiences before. Every kiss, every moment of happiness, every pain – everything was already there and in the face of eternity everything becomes banal, stale and irrelevant. With all their power, the Sidhe struggles against their most dangerous foe, this endless boredom that threaten to eat the their souls from within. The oldest among them slowly loses this struggle and descend into madness and suicide. Only a handful of the Godslayers are still alive, and their madness is even unsettling for other Sidhe who are used to the eccentricities of the immortals. The younger Sidhe party and dance as if there were no tomorrow, they search for a focus in life, strive for it for a century or two and get bored by it after they achieved a certain degree of perfection. Elves themselves into life because they have to – they laugh and work hard to be as shallow as possible, but in deeper understanding of themselves there is only desperation. The time tears wholes in their lives and the Sidhe struggle to fill them up with as many deflections as possible. A Sidhe that stops to live as much and hard as possible, will soon be swallowed by the pure banality of his own existence.
The only fate worse for a Sidhe than death is boredom.

2007-12-22, 07:36 PM
The body of the Sidhe
Physically, the Sidhe are more similar to humans than any other Ashkardian race, even though they despise the comparison to the “Iron Monkeys”, especially those Sidhe that are old enough to remember the Conquest and its atrocities.
Elves are tall and slender but despite their airy figure, they are surprisingly strong. Both male and female Elves look androgynous and have feminine hands and lineaments. Sidhe have astonishing reflexes and an even more astonishing dexterity. Their limbs are proportionally longer than those of a human, and especially the legs are very muscled. Sidhe are built for fast movement and mobility and they excel in these areas.
The iris of their almond eyes polarizes in direct light like cat eyes. The color of their eyes are very intensive and have the cold beauty of gemstones which gives the stare of the Sidhe a hypnotic quality. Sidhe have an incredible night vision, but even more impressive is their ability to resist bright light – a Sidhe can stare into the sun for a minute without blinking.
The ears of the Sidhe are elongated and pointed ( and once they were a favourite trophy of Troll warriors). The perception of Elves is famous and even respected by the Trolls.

2007-12-22, 07:38 PM
The Culture of the Sidhe
The Elven culture is dominated by the Sidhe’s constant strive to fight the boredom of an eternal youth. The younger Sidhe are those who define the whole culture mostly, because in the first one or two centuries of their existence, the Sidhe can still be deeply absorbed into one specific objective or hobby and bring new and often fascinating creations into existence. Later, when they are older, it becomes much harder for them to become involved and fascinated by anything – the typical Elven blasť attitude is a result of this indifference for passions which became only a repetition of a repetition. After this circle starts, stimula to wake the interest of the Sidhe become more and more extreme.
While some Sidhes collect such stimula – from breathtaking beautiful sculptures to the conserved remains of the most disgusting chimeras, self created organs out of Kryst and sharply ragged tools of torture.
Others become interested in a wide variety of differences of different activities for a short time but lose interest as soon as a more serious involvement or even something similar to work is necessary; than they get bored and their interests shift to other activities.
At first, the Sidhe society looks utopian – Sidhe faniants spent their leisure time in their garden palaces a perfect fusion of architecture, magic and gardening. Every Sidhe lives in a pure world, free of hardships without the need to work, for ever free, for ever youthful and without the plights, illnesses and dirt of the normal world outside the Sidhe palace gardens. Every Elf practises his arts, authorities or gods are unnecessary in the Elven paradise.
But the paradise has a darker and more terrifying side. The luxury of the Sidhe is bought by the freedom of others and the Sidhe’s freedom is based on the work of their slaves.
There are three to five slaves for every Sidhe that lives in the garden palaces – and ironically the slaves are happy in their roles – better to be treated like dirt by the Sidhe than treated as an equal by another human. The slaves – humans as well as the servitor races like the Orks and Pixies – are enchanted by the glamour of the Sidhe and dream of being a part of the Elven paradise. In a way they are already a part of it – the dirty part the Sidhe prefers to ignore. The slaves are happy and ignore that the Sidhe will hardly ever recognize any Non-Sidhe as anything more than a curious animal.
Apart from the obvious authority of the Sidhe over their slaves, the Sidhe world has little need of nobility or authority figures. A Sidhe has numerous , almost endless freedom and priviledges. From the Sidhe’s point of view, it is absolutely normal that a young Sidhe spends one or two centuries as a wild rebel to let of some steam. Often, these young elves are those who feed the interest of the Sidhe as a whole
It is quite common for Sidhe to develop and maintain a fine sense for beauty and Aesthetics, on the one hand because they have enough time for such trivia, and on the other hand to maintain a certain fascination for something beautiful – or grotesque – even after more normal impressions have become shallow. Many Sidhe try to retain a spark of childish fascination for small moments of beauty or pain, or at least they maintain a mask of this fascination even to themselves to not face the truth of their damnation. Sidhe who have lived through several centuries life for small wondrous moments and hope for an epiphany. Smug elder Sidhe who dismiss highly complex symphonies without further notice can be completely hypnotized by the flight of a bird or dew drops on a spider’s web. Contests of all kinds of artists are a popular and common pastime in the garden palaces. But the Sidhe can see easily art in any activity that requires a certain passion or aptitude in the process of its creation – including the creation of the most scarring chimeras or the art of torture and flaying.
The majority of the Sidhe live in the remaining six old towns, the so called garden palaces. The remaining towns are – apart from the Mil’Varat fortresses and tunnels of the Trolls the oldest remaining settlements in Ashkardia. The palace gardens are the archetypical Elven settlements, a careful maintained ‘wild’ forest where the line between the plants and the buildings blur. The other, much smaller Settlements of the Sidhe are designed in a similar way to resemble the original old towns. These towns are spacious and only thinly populated; the Sidhe favour their privacy and complex architecture full of careful arranged details and ostentatious monuments. Between the single palaces grows the Forest of the Sidhe full of carefully created and maintained tree-chimeras, always blooming magically formed groves which are maintained by swarms of pixies. Within the palace gardens the plant life is not subjected to the wheel of the seasons but to the will of the Sidhe alone. The greatest level of skill is described as the perfect fusion of plants, magic and buildings into one great artwork.
Outside of the true palace gardens and plump and ugly by Elven standards, the slave quarters are located. Here are living the humans, orcs and pixies that are necessary the Elven way of life and infrastructure. Most elves rarely come to these quarters and avoid them whenever possible – or come here if they look for an adventure or laboratory animals. The Sidhe call this dark slums “Aldij’ereth” – the blemish.
As already mentioned, the Sidhe society functions without strict hierarchy, but the oldest Sidhe – especially those who are renowned for their knowledge of the magical arts, are widely respected. Otherwise, the influence and esteem of a single Sidhe is in constant change and intrigues to embarrass a rival or improve someone’s reputation are so usual that no one among the Sidhe recognizes them anymore. The lack of such intrigues would be much stranger for them.
The Sidhe are completely atheistic. They did not only kill their gods back in the days when they were still mortals, but in the world how the Sidhe see it, there is no place for any powerful beings who demands worship apart from the Sidhe themselves.

The magic of the Sidhe
Magic is almost omnipresent in the life of the Sidhe. They claim to have the most powerful magicians among them and hardly differentiate between mundane and magical tasks and often merge them into one. Sidhe thinks of magic as something granted and treat those without a gift with an arrogant pity like a human may treat a blinded person. Elves are apt in any schools and colour of magic and have little qualms to use any kind of magic, but they are particularly talented in two fields of magic: transmogrification and mind affecting enchantments. While most Sidhe wizards never achieve the effortlessness of the vivisectionist transmogrifying chambers, they have created countless chimeras, among them the Pixies and the Orks as servitors as well as pegasi or mock unicorns and the praised witchwood trees. Enchantment spells come naturally to Sidhe and they are the unchallenged masters of these spells – the Sidhe have developed most of them from the most subtle magical insinuations to the gross cruelty of the vilest mind rape spells.

2007-12-22, 07:39 PM
The Dragon Riders
The dragon riders are exotic, even measured by the standard of the Sidhe. Millennia ago, the Sidhe started to train and manipulate dragons as mounts and weapons of war. Dragons maybde sentient but by no means are they as intelligent as the cunning Sidhe and with the right methods and the natural aptitude of the Sidhe for mind affecting magic, the dragons are turned into obedient servants when the training can be started early enough. Since the upbringing and training of a dragon is highly complicated and takes several decades to work, only a handful of Elves ever get involved in this cumbersome process and become true dragon riders. Those few are often considered to be peculiar eccentrics by their fellow Sidhe and often they spend more time with their dragons than with other Sidhe. Most dragon riders serve the palace gardens as scouts and messengers but they rarely get involved with most of the way of life of the other Sidhe. Dragon and Sidhe must adapt to each other and even though the Sidhe as a whole boast that they can even dominate the powerful dragons, the true dragon riders rarely agrees to this claim – for them, it is less a domination and more a symbiosis between the rider and his mount.
The Wind Singers, a fringe group of Sidhe dissidents fled from the advancing trolls over the sidhe on the western islands which are called the Dragon Islands today in the so called “Winged Exodus”. Isolated from the other Sidhe for several centuries the island dwellers developed own somewhat strange customs and never became involved in the revenge driven slaughters of Vilanai’s Orks. Here, the Dragon Riders have became the elite of a small and separated Sidhe subculture which is much less ostentatious than the Sidhe of the garden palaces. The Wind Singer communities are much more primitive than their mainland counterparts and have a very bad reputation as trollfriends and brutes among the majority of the Sidhe. The Wind Singers on the other hand regard themselves as ‘pure’ in contrast to the blasť and decadent Sidhe of the old towns. Both groups hardly speak with each other and bear a deep distrust for the opposing group.

2007-12-22, 07:43 PM
Sidhe (Elves) (LA+2)
As a rule of thumb, all Ashkardian Races will be more powerful than usual, including the Sidhe. They are more likely a LA+3 race in a different scale.
Abilities: DEX +4, INT+2, CHA +4 Elves are painfully graceful and beautiful to watch. They move with the elegance and aura of great cats, but a cold and rational mind is hidden under the beautiful appearance.

Sidhe are Medium Ashkardian Humanoids (Sidhe).

Elf base land speed is 30 feet. At 5th level, the Elf gets a 10 ft Bonus to his or her base land speed if he or she is wearing no armor, light armor, or medium armor and not carrying a heavy load.

Superior Low-Light Vision: A Sidhe can see four times as far as a human in starlight, moonlight, torchlight, and similar conditions of poor illumination. He retains the ability to distinguish color and detail under these conditions.

Sharp Senses: Their superior perception grants Elves a +2 racial bonus on Listen, Search, and Spot checks. An elf who merely passes within 5 feet of a secret or concealed door is entitled to a Search check to notice it as if she were actively looking for it.

Unsleeping: Sidhe do not need to sleep. They only need to rest to regenerate Spellpoints or Fatigue. They are immune against Sleep spells or similar magical or supernatural effects.

Masters of Enchantment: Elves have mastered the mind affecting magic of enchantment; they get a +1 racial bonus to their Casting Level when ever they use an Enchantment spell. Their great aptitude for this variety of magic also grants them a +2 racial bonus to Saving throws against Enchantment spells.

Natural Magic: Sidhe don’t need the Gift trait to take levels in a full Caster Class. They are always treated as if they had the Gift trait of their chosen form of magic.

Great Potency: Sidhe are among strongest magicians known to Ashkardia. They receive an additional Spellpoint per level.
Magical Perception: Sidhe can use the Spell Sense Magic at will. The use of the Spell does not cost them any spellpoints. The caster level is the half (rounded up) character level of the Sidhe.

Affinity for Magic: Their magical perception and innate magical powers grants Elves a racial +2 Bonus to Spellcraft, Knowledge (Arcane) and Use Magical Device skill checks.

Cultural Background: At Character Creation, a Sidhe chose one of the following traits: Agile, Acrobatic,. Alertness, ,… (the list is obviously not complete yet. )

Unaging: Elves take no penalties to their ability scores for aging and cannot be magically aged. Bonuses still accrue.

Vulnerability: Elves are vulnerable to iron. They suffer one additional point of damage for every damage dice dealt by iron weapons.

Favored Classes: Ranger, Sorcerer or Wizard. Sidhe who follow the Ranger, Sorcerer or Wizard class get a bonus feat on 1st, 5th and 10th class level.