View Full Version : Darik City (Urban Arcana Setting)

2008-01-23, 11:47 AM
This is a thread organizing the information I already posted in a different thread when I was still in the conceptual stages of this particular setting. I plan on running this in a PbP game pretty soon, so I just need to finalize information. Unfortunately, I need to head to class soon, so I'll probably be only able to post a fraction of the work I have finished for now, so I'll just reserve a few posts for info.

The concept of Darik City came when I transitioned one too many times from playing Dungeons and Dragons to playing Grand Theft Auto: Vice City. It started with the image of a kobold in the role of Tommy Vercetti, bad hawaiian shirt, sunglasses, cigarette, and twin uzis. Then the idea progressed to the elven mafia, and snowballed from there.

Darik City takes a look at the world of Dungeons and Dragons as the technology progresses into a more modern age. Inventions like phones and computers are completely unnecessary, thanks to arcane spells replicating the functions they were designed for, but guns and skyscrapers have practical applications and are therefore common. From the ingenuity of the dwarves and gnomes, to the arcane powers of the elves, to the influence and inspiration given by outsiders, fey, and dragons, at least part of the world has progressed to what would be considered by its inhabitants as a shining achievement of modern ingenuity.

Adventurers are still needed though, life isn't a cakewalk. Political officials are corrupt, corporate officials keep a tight vice on the economy. Due to unsavory conditions and the rising cost of living, gangs form out of a financial need to survive, consisting of members unable to hold an honest working job (thanks to cheap undead, construct, and summoned labor and their very low cost of not living) who turn to crime as a way to make ends meet. Crime families at all social classes and wealth levels form, from your typical street gang to the elven mafia. Kobold drugrunners, halfling con men, and goblin swindlers litter the streets. Dragons from the south, giants returning from the countryside, and aberrations from underground seek to gain their own influence within the city, not to mention the already established corporations of good and evil outsider which wage a corporate war over the city. Even a few small planar rifts around the city threaten to tear it apart by its foundation. A typical adventurer cares not for saving the world though, as its troubles are largely masked by consumerism and politicians putting on a strong face and telling the masses the only things wrong are the unfortunate lowlife hoodlums who infest their streets. A typical adventurer might simply be an outlaw looking to make it on his own, a good samaritan looking to make the city a slightly better place, or a willing pawn of the corporations, giving up partial freedom in exchange for arcane power. Good and evil have little influence in the lives of everyday citizens in a city full of vice, crime, and poverty. The typical battle here is between law (the politicians, the police force, the wealthy) versus chaos (the criminals, the poor, the working class) but there is still potential for heroes. here.

History of Darik City:
((A full history is in the works. For the time being though, most of the details are largely explained within the racial fluff.))

2008-01-23, 11:50 AM
Races of Darik City

Humans in Darik City do not have a shared cultural identity. They consist mostly of random families and migrants from other cities who came to the city looking for work, refuge, or simply a new life. The only things that separates them from other migrant races are their sheer numbers and their ability to adapt. Humans are now by far the most populous race in the city, and have ingrained themselves in any part of society. Even otherwise untrusting races find themselves eventually taking on a few human employees. You can find humans as low-level office workers in the Outsiders' Corporations, as assistants in the arcane practices of the elves, as laborers in the dwarven communities, riding with the Worgs as one of the gang, or even running errands for the gnomes, halflings, kobolds, and goblins. This isn't to say that humans are only low-level workers. While all of the above organizations will be very hesitant to let any foreign race to get in their highest ranks, some humans have formed their own gangs, businesses, and organizations. Because of their likability and the ease in which they can socialize with other races, humans make great politicians. The current mayor of the city is Mayor Gordon Goodwill, a charismatic politician who "owes favors" to most of the major organizations who helped him reach his lofty position. As a result, he will pretend to do tasks for the good of the city, but rarely gets anything of real value accomplished, as it would hinder his benefactors' businesses.

Human Racial Traits
Humans are the same as they were in the Player's Handbook. Humans may choose between getting the bonus feat or choosing one other class feature from below based on their affiliation.
Humans affiliated with the elven mafia receive +2 to the DC of any school of spells in wizard and sorcerer class levels.
Humans affiliated with the Builders gain the Stonecunning ability, only it applies to all manmade structures.
Humans affiliated with the Parkers may use Speak with Animals once per day.
Humans affiliated with the Diggers gain Darkvision, but only out to 30 feet.
Humans affiliated with the Worg gain Half-Orc and Orc racial weapon proficiencies as well as +2 to Drive (Motorcycle) checks.
Humans affiliated with the Kobolds gain +2 to Fort saves made to resist harmful poisons.

The elves were born into this world of arcane power, and as such arcane power was what the elven society revolved around. For the longest time, arcane power was decided to be a gift from the god of elves that denoted divine right to rule. This worked for awhile, as the wizards became the unquestioned rulers of their race, and made education for the commoners expensive and difficult to provide. This ended when random elves from completely different castes started developing sorcerous powers. At first, it was explained as simply a fluke. The child was obviously of noble blood and had somehow been placed into commoner society. A mistake was made and it will be corrected by promoting said sorcerer to noble status. Eventually, there were too many of these "mistakes" and too few of the luxuries of the noble caste to go around, and a power struggle ensued. When the bloody struggle ended, there were no lower castes, just 8 main families left who agreed on a truce. However, with no lower caste to exploit, the families needed to turn elsewhere to gain their luxuries off the backs of exploited workers. For awhile, this took on the form of local tribes of orc or goblinoid races. Eventually, the elves came across the dwarves, who would use their magicks to build their own city. Seeing the opportunity to reclaim their noble status, granted in a new culture, the elves

Mordiani Family - Members of the Mordiani family specialize in abjuration magic. The Mordiani family is simultaneously feared, disdained, and respected. On the one hand, the Mordinai family focuses their attentions on dispelling and countering the other families' magicks, which some see as potentially hostile. On the other hand, there's no doubt that they make great allies, especially if an internal war between the families should come again. The Mordiani family exploits this fact to great extents. They also deal with wards and private security systems, but always leave hidden loopholes should they need to exploit them.

Corellioni Family - The Corellioni family specializes in conjuration magic. The oldest family of the 8, and the original royal family, the Corellioni family's school provides many benefits and arguably holds the most influence in the family, able to summon labor, provide instant transportation for those who need it, and can create necessary materials instantly. The Corellioni are expanding its influence by making deals with the various outsider corporations.

Dienera Family - The Dienera family is one of diviners. Anyone who's ever met a Dienera suspects that they know more than they're letting on, and in most cases they're right. The Dieneras are a mystery because of simply how much information they have, and they're not giving it up, at least not without a price. The Dieneras hold the monopoly on information broking, and won't hesitate to give out prophecies and information to the highest bidder. They may even lie in such cases when they can get away with it to better preserve the value of their information.

Valentino Family - The Valentino family holds the best enchanters in their family. The Valentino look to gain power and influence through control of leaders, politicians, and other big names. Why hire out help when you can get mercs to gladly do your dirty work for free? The Valentino family has probably the most resources and wealth because of these practices, though this is not confirmed, as most financial records within the families are very secret. The Valentinos, along with the Misettis, control most of the brothels, prostitution, and performance businesses in Darik City.

Biggatoni Family - The unstable Biggatoni family is well-known for their evocation magicks. The Biggatonis have many warmages among their ranks, and are considered simultaneously the least and most dangerous among the families. On the one hand, any Biggatoni has trouble keeping secrets and performing tasks with subtlety. On the other hand, they're the most likely to react to a problem by destroying it with extreme prejudice. The Biggatonis know how much they can get away with considering their influence in the city, and they aren't afraid to use it.

Misetti Family - The Misetti family specializes in illusions. The Misettis are probably the most passive of the families. Most of their illegal activities are involved with conning and swindling every chump for every cent they're worth. The Misettis were the primary dealers with the dwarves all those years ago, and are the main reason the deal went so smoothly for the elves. The Misettis have many Beguilers and Bards among their ranks and have a great deal of stock in the prostitution and performance trades in Darik City.

Scaravini Family - The Scaravini family specialized in necromancy. It's rumored that the Drow exiles were a branch family of the Scaravini. The smallest of the families, and also the most ostracized, the Scaravini provide cheap labor for any business, and have a frightening insight into the nature of life and death. In any conflict with divine forces, the Scaravini are the first to respond, able to counter turning attempts and divine magicks with their own powerful necromancy.

Salvatore Family - The Salvatore family consists of transmuters. Whether it's people, objects, or even time itself, the Salvatore family knows how to twist, change, distort, and manipulate it. Literally the most unstable of the families, the Salvatore provide a multitude of services encompassing most aspects of Darik City life. No one ever really knows what to expect when dealing with a Salvatore, but there are rumors of waste products and failed experiments of the family being dumped into the city sewers.

Elves have the same racial traits except as follows.
Elven stats are now -2 Con, +2 Int, -2 Wis, +2 Cha
Elves are no longer immune to sleep effects and must sleep like every other race.
Elves no longer receive a +2 racial saving throw against enchantment spells or effects.
Elves receive +1 CL on any arcane spell whose school is the specialty of the elf's family. For example, a Mordiani elf receives +1 CL on all abjuration spells.
Elves receive +2 on saves against spells or spell-like abilities of their family's school.
Elves receive a -1 CL penalty on all divine spells.


Long ago, before the City's construction, the land was controlled by giants who squandered its resources. The dwarves had originally lived far below the earth's surface, and had always lived there, mining up to try and reach the surface out of instinct and divine guidance. When they broke through to the surface, they thought they would receive their eternal reward, but instead they found a war. The war between the giants and the dwarves lasted hundreds of years, but any advantage the giants might reach was negated by more dwarven forces popping out of the ground like daisies. Eventually, what few giants remained were driven far into the countryside. The dwarves in rejoicement decided to build the new dwarven capitol of their soon-to-be dwarven nation on this land. Eventually sealing off the tunnels they had come through, the dwarves focused on building the city from the ground up, utilizing whatever divine magicks and labor they could gather. They even built the Warforged for cheap, tireless labor. However, their resources were not enough. They needed some source of arcane magic to make their city, and unfortunately had no particularly strong arcane casters among them. This is when the charismatic elven families approached the dwarves and agreed to loan the arcane forces necessary for a "fair price." Why wouldn't the dwarves accept this gracious offer from these pointy-eared strangers? It seemed like a good deal with potential allies at the time. So they took the arcane forces and finished their city. As soon as they were done, the elves demanded payment, and far more than the original amount. When the dwarves couldn't afford the price, the elves took the best parts of the city as their payment, forcing the dwarves into the lesser developed, less geographically profitable areas of the city. The dwarves wouldn't let this travesty go completely without retribution, and let loose many of their divine magicks on the city, causing among other things the parks to go berserk. The elves were left dealing with the results, but while it took a few years, for the most part restored order to their sections of the cities. Now the dwarves exist in three different factions, neither of which is particularly friendly towards elves or any of the other races which dare invade "their" city. The Builders follow their traditional trades of construction and development, usually trying to make the dwarven sections of the city a better place to live and taking any independent contracts that don't have elves in them. Of all the dwarven factions, the Builders are the easiest to deal with. Then there are the Diggers who subscribe to the belief that maybe they're better off just going back to their roots, literally, and take up mining operations to dig below the surface of the city. Unfortunately, many strange creatures and aberrations have taken up residence in those sealed off tunnels, so the excavation will be quite a challenge. Some of their critics claim that the Diggers are actually trying to make the city collapse on itself, but there is no proof to back them up. Finally, there are the Parkers, mostly made up of Druids, Rangers, and other nature-oriented classes. When the dwarves let the parks grow freely, many of the dwarves who created these artificial ecosystems kept their emotional attachment and grew to live as one with the dangerous parks and forests. Often seen as tree-hugging hippy radicals by other, "less understanding" races, Parkers are the least respected of the dwarven factions, though the Diggers are not much better.

Dwarves' racial stats are changed to the following:
+2 Con, -2 Int, +2 Wis, -2 Cha
Dwarves have low-light vision instead of darkvision, except for the Diggers (see below)
Dwarves do not receive the +2 bonus against spells and spell-like abilities if they are arcane spells. Arcane forces are relatively new to the dwarves and actually one of their weaknesses.
Dwarves do not get a +1 on attack rolls against Orcs or Goblinoids. They do, however, get a +1 on attack rolls against elves and elven subraces. Dwarves might distrust other races, but they loathe elves more than anything.

Also, certain factions of dwarves have the following:

Builders' Stonecunning improves to +4 and applies to any structure: stone, metal, concrete, or otherwise. Builders are very familiar with the ins and outs of construction, and can tell more from a building's foundation and structure than most can.
Builders receive a +2 bonus on Drive (Machinery).
Builders are natural climbers from working on skyscrapers, and receive a +2 on Balance and Climb checks, and falling damage to a Builder is reduced by 2 dice.

Diggers have Darkvision out to 60 feet. Unlike their cousins, the Diggers never grew out of their tunneling habits.
Diggers receive a +4 Reflex save to avoid cave-ins or other natural underground hazards. This does not apply to artificially caused cave-ins (such as those caused by arcane spells).
Diggers receive a +1 bonus on attack rolls against aberrations, which they fight frequently in the tunnels.
Diggers receive a +2 circumstance bonus when attempting to break apart stone or otherwise dig through stone.

Parkers do not receive Stonecunning in any form.
Parkers receive a +2 bonus on Survival, Handle Animal, Spot, Listen, and Knowledge (Nature) checks from their times spent in the wilderness of the parks.
Parkers can use one of the following spells as a spell-like ability once per day: Calm Animals, Charm Animal, Detect Animals or Plants, Hide from Animals, Pass without Trace, Shillelagh, Speak with Animals, Summon Nature's Ally I

The Worgs aren't your everyday biker gang. This Orcish gang migrated to the city en masse after their homeland was pretty much raped clean of any resources by the elves. For years, the Worgs functioned as a nomadic tribe, eager to settle down in a place that suited them as well as their homelands did. Then they found Darik City, a place with little to no enforceable law where they could live in... well... peace isn't the right word since they're a very unstable, violent culture where might makes right. The only thing keeping them together are vague but respected traditions and the fact that if someone steps out of line, someone stronger, possibly even the leader will come along and kick their ass. The rules are on leadership are as followed: if you can beat the leader in one-on-one combat (usually bare-handed or with severely limited equipment and no magic allowed), then you become the leader. The Worg territory is centered around a bar the orcs opened called Uruk's Hideaway. The Orcs are not picky, and will mate with anyone they find attractive (attractive in this case usually means savage and strong) and not always with the opposite gender. Homosexuality and bisexuality are readily accepted among Worg society with little to no prejudice. Polygamy in itself is the norm among the Orcs, although this is because an Orc can literally just pick out someone they find attractive in the gang and, if the prospective "mate" isn't strong enough to defeat the suitor in one-on-one combat, they're now married. Marriage ceremonies are more like gladiatorial combat. Humans and any other race that can prove themselves strong enough are welcomed into the gang, so it wasn't long before generations of half-orcs were produced. While males and females technically have equal roles among the Worgs, the fact is that the men are on average stronger than the women, and dominate the society. There are exceptions to this, and the biggest one is the current leader, Marga the Chopper (Half-Orc Fighter X, Barbarian X, Frenzied Berserker X), who exercises her power often, and orc, half-orc, and human partners of both genders. While she constantly has to fend off other challenges for leadership as all the leaders do, no one has come close quite yet.

Half-Orcs are the same as in the PHB except as follows.
Half-Orc stats are instead: +2 Str, -2 Int, -2 Wis. Half-Orcs and their cousins are more sociable than the D&D norm, but a bit dumber as well.
Half-Orcs get low-light vision instead of darkvision. They've never had a reason to develop it.
+2 to Drive (Motorcycle), +2 Intimidate, -2 Diplomacy. Half-Orcs are raised to be hellraisers, and get into full-out fistfights even among their best friends, so this makes it difficult to get along well with.
+1 to attack when fighting bare-handed when fighting with light or no armor. Half-Orcs are natural barroom brawlers.
Half-Orcs treat chains, spiked chains, orc double axes, and improvised weapons (bar) as martial weapons.

Far to the south across the ocean lies a country consisting of a large archipelago of islands. These lands were created and are owned by dragons. There are many myths surrounding these islands, such as how it might have used to be a continent that was destroyed and separated in draconic wars, or how the dragons raised rocks from the ocean floor to create these islands. The myths vary from island to island, but in any case, in their present state, dragons are deified. They are said to have created the races they lord over, which causes a strict caste system by race. Just under the dragons are their elite chosen few, the half-dragons and the dragonborn, admired throughout the islands. Next are the lizardmen, who are spread evenly among labor and noble jobs. Then there are the troglodytes, who due to their revolting nature, work separate from society either on fishing boats or on small farms. Finally, there is the lowest caste of all: the Kobolds. In the islands controlled by chromatic dragons, this means that the Kobolds are slaves without any form of civil rights. In the islands governed by metallic dragons, it means that Kobolds are free and have some rights, but are still poor underlings with no hope of achieving more than the worst of jobs.

No one knows who it really was, but one of the kobolds decided he'd had enough. A bunch of kobolds got together, gathered various ores, herbs, and exotic materials from the isles, stole a ship, and went across the sea to Darik City to start a new life. With that new life, however, came crime and corruption, as the best the kobolds had to sell was a rare drug called Dragon's Blood. No one really knows if the drug is actual Dragon's Blood, or if the kobolds are merely using the name, and the few kobolds who do know the fact aren't telling. Eventually more and more kobolds migrated to Darik City, eventually setting up an entire drug run from the islands to Darik City. The kobolds in charge keep their leadership by keeping the origin of Dragon's Blood a secret, and maintain their foothold in the drug industry by keeping an exclusive monopoly on this substance. Reeker Krikrkraak is the current ringleader of this operation, but he and his subordinates have in recent times had to deal with lizardmen and higher coming to either take control of the operation or shut it down. The chromatic dragons are unforgiving when it comes to this matter, but the metallic dragons are strangely impassive, almost indirectly encouraging the kobolds to build a better life for themselves.

Kobolds function much differently in this setting, and have the stats below:
((NOTE: This is for Kobolds who escaped to Darik City, who are much stronger than their enslaved brethren.))
Kobolds have -2 Str, +2 Dex. Kobolds are small, but dextrous, though physically superior to their ancestors and cousins.
Small: Kobolds receive all the benefits of being small-sized (+1 AC, +1 on attack rolls, -4 on grapple checks, +4 on Hide, uses small weapons, and lower carrying capacity.)
Kobolds have the dragonblood and reptilian subtypes. For all effects related to race, a kobold is considered a dragon.
Base land speed of 30 feet
+1 natural armor bonus
Darkvision up to 60 feet.
Kobolds get +2 on Craft (Trapmaking), Swim, and Drive (Boat) checks.
Kobolds no longer are sensitive to light.
Favored Class: Rogue

Halflings hail from the far-east country of Chin, an ironically large country whose government is ruled by a constantly changing emperor and whose economy is reliant on small agricultural sources and large-scale criminal operations. The country was formed as loose coalitions of farmlands slowly integrated into each other to form a large, densely populated feudal nation governed by a self-appointed Emperor who, over the country's history has constantly been challenged and overthrown numerous times by various interchangeable power groups, which, other than names and relationships with other groups, are no different from each other. Halflings of Chin will claim to have a rich culture of art, architecture, and sculpture. In reality, these "elements of halfling culture" were ripped off from other nearby countries, such as the gnomish country of Kawaii. Very soon into Chin history, land became scarce as the population boomed. Small, poor ghettoed cities were quickly formed. The economy never improved, and the government was to blame. Criminal societies were soon formed, each one either raiding other countries or usurping the emperor to unsuccessfully lead a new "dynasty" which would last anywhere from a week to a couple years at most. Many halflings who had no such affiliations or who were low in their respective organizations came to Darik City to start a new life, usually a life of crime. Some still loyal to Chin started trade routes (even those that were less than legal). Some became self-proclaimed artists who ripped off of other musicians to fuel their own careers. Most however simply became con men or rogues for hire.

Halfling Statistics
Halflings are the same except as follows.
Halflings instead of their normal skill bonuses gain +2 to the following: Sleight of Hand, Disable Device, Forgery, Bluff, and Open Lock.
Halfling base land speed is 30 feet. Halflings have learned to be quick on their feet.
Halflings do not gain the +1 bonus to all saving throws, though they do retain the +2 morale bonus against fear. Whether it's through sheer stupidity, necessity, or courage, halflings are not easily intimidated.
Halflings do not gain a +1 bonus on attack rolls with sling. They gain a +1 bonus on attack rolls with daggers. This stacks with the +1 on attack rolls with thrown weapons.

Gnomes are a race of pride and humility, of ingenuity and technology. A gnome's honor is unfallible by foreigners, but is easily destroyed by one's own mistakes and faults. The gnomes hail from Kawaii, a technological wonder with unfortunately few raw resources. This forces the gnomes to open up their borders to otherwise untolerable foreigners. Their attempts at diplomacy are even further hindered by the fact that no one seems to be able to take the gnomes seriously. Eventually, diplomacy was left to the crime families, as they had the brute force and the intimidation to back up their transactions. The gnomes mostly deal in manufactured goods, anywhere from toasters to illegal arms. Gnomes cannot stand the halfling culture, either at home or in trade. Their first meeting was when halfling bandits crossed the border to raid gnome workshops, and they have found less honor in halfling actions and history than they have in any other culture to date. Gnomes generally regard other races with distaste. Those who've gotten to know dwarves, however, see them as a very honorable race. Gnomish religion has them worshipping a complex pantheon of ancestral spirits turned deities, reincarnated into the very elements themselves.

Gnome Statistics
Gnomes have the following racial stats
Gnomes have the following racial stats: -2 Strength, +2 Intelligence, +2 Wisdom, -2 Charisma. Gnomish minds are among the keenest, if the most underestimated, but their feeble figures and presence proves a hindrance in their everyday life.
Gnomes gain a +2 bonus on all will saves. This bonus replaces the usual +2 bonus against illusions.
Gnomes gain a +1 bonus on attack rolls against halflings, who they view as dishonorable miscreant scum who they are shamed to share a border with. This replaces the usual bonus against kobolds and goblinoids.
Gnomes do not gain +4 dodge bonus AC against giants.
Gnomes do not gain +1 DC to illusion spells
Instead of the normal spell-like abilities, Gnomes get the following once per day: Arcane Mark, Detect Magic, Identify, Mage Hand, Prestidigitation, Read Magic
Gnomes gain a +2 bonus to all Craft skills, Use Magic Device, Spellcraft, and Listen.
A gnome's favored class is Wizard instead of Bard.

2008-01-23, 11:51 AM

Barbarian - Some of you may wonder what sort of place in society a disfunctional destructive machine of pure rage would have in a civilized city. Usually Barbarians are fresh immigrants from other lands looking to start a new life. Their combat prowess is definitely prized, especially by organizations looking for muscle or bodyguards, or even better just some dumb criminal lackeys to take the blame. Half-Orcs and Orcs of the Worg biker gang make very good barbarians, as do the humans, ogres and bugbears that migrate to the city. A good portion of the gnoll population outside the city.

Bard - The Elven Mafia in particular looks for show talent to perform at their various clubs, specifically the more attractive ones who might also make money in the local prostitution rings. Elves and half-elves make up most of the bards in the city, though human, aasimar, and tiefling bards are not unheard of.

Clerics - Religion has very little of a role in the big city, but there are other ways for Clerics to gain spells. The various outsider corporations are more than willing to enter into contracts with individuals to grant power in exchange for loyalties. In these cases, instead of preparing spells normally, a cleric meets with a representative from her benefactor, usually a lower-level outsider , who then negotiate for spells for the day. The benefactor is free to refuse any spells, as well as nullify the contract should the cleric take any "unfavorable" actions. While all races are welcome to make contracts and become clerics, tiefling and aasimar clerics are the most common. Kobold clerics who worship their foreign dragon masters are also not unheard of. Gnomes also have their own ancestral religion, worshipping their ancestral spirits turned deities. All clerics regardless of their deity or contract receive spells and domains. As long as they make sense, any domains are selectable for all Clerics.

Druids - Druids are rare in the city, but not unheard of. There are a few gnoll druids on the outskirts of the city, but most of the druids actually dwell in or near the local parks, deriving their power from the powerful magicks that make the miniature self-sufficient ecosystems possible. As the dwarves are most familiar with these magicks, since they are the ones who built them, they make the most common druids. Anyone who becomes attuned with nature can become a druid, though usually they need the approval of the dwarves. An elf could never become a druid. Druids whose spells and class features are modeled after stone or water themes are also not unheard of.

Fighters - Fighters remain largely unchanged and are quite popular in this setting, as adventurers, mercenaries, or muscle.

Monks Good help is hard to find. Good, loyal help is even harder. There are a number of "orphanages" sponsored by the various outsider corporations. These "orphanages" are in fact secret training grounds meant to raise children of any race in a strict, rigid environment full of exercise and training in the martial arts. Sometimes, a child or two might escape and try to make it on their own in the city, but most of the time they are brainwashed from a young age by their corporate masters to do their unquestioned bidding. Monks can come from any race, though aasimar and tiefling are the most common. Not all of these monastic orphanages are owned by outsider corporations. Some are in fact independently owned by other forces, even ex-employees who take pity on the fate of the typical monk.

Paladins are few and far between in Darik City, though more of the variants (Paladin of Freedom, Slaughter, Tyranny) and the fallen Blackguard exist than the "traditional" paladin. Paladins are still bastions of good who, should they come to the city for whatever reason, will try and fix what little they are able to in the contexts of their lives. Paladins of all kinds are most often found in the DCPD, finding that a position of law enforcement gives them the best chance to protect good and punish evil. Paladins follow no particular religion, though often receive assistance from Arkan, the good outsider corporation. In fact, one of Arkan's chief focuses seems to be increasing the paladin population in Darik City. Paladins have a much more lax moral code. Although they will still never willingly commit chaotic or evil acts, if they believe their actions are for the greater good, then they can do so without affecting their alignment or losing their class features. A paladin can take levels in another class and still take levels in paladin later. Finally, paladins can associate with decidedly evil individuals as long as they disapprove of their actions, make some attempt at curbing the evil actions and consequences of the individual, and do not join the individual in committing evil actions. A lawful good paladin and a blackguard can even work as partners in the same squad car in the DCPD as long as the paladin tries to minimize the blackguard's damage, although various moral debates are inevitable in such a partnership.

Rangers - Rangers use the Urban Ranger variant, and make great trackers that are in high demand for hire among the crime families, as well as the local police force. A lot of rangers make work as private detectives in the big city as well.

Rogues - Rogues are also quite popular mercenary-types, but some can make it as independent criminals as long as they stay out of the affairs of the major crime families.

Sorcerers and Wizards
Most of the wizards in Dark City are elves or half-elves. The elven mafia has had a near monopoly on arcane powers since the birth of their race, and have always had a natural talent for it. In fact, there is one major family for each school of magic. It is possible to derive arcane power from other sources, but be warned. Most of said sources, if not controlled by foreign powers, are highly dangerous and volatile and will most likely illicit elven assassins on your ass. Sorcerers must either draw their power from elven blood or draconic blood (kobolds, lizardmen, half-dragons, etc.) However, some have managed to draw arcane power from aberration sources, but the power is twisted and corrupt, causing its users to go mad eventually. Gnomes are able to manipulate artificial arcane energy with a process unique to their homeland and also become wizards.

2008-01-23, 11:52 AM
Map of Darik City


I'm waiting for later to go into detail about various locales, mostly to keep that which I want to stay secret secret for now.

2008-01-23, 01:12 PM
A good read so far but a few questions

1. All the other races have some sort of Homeland, did the Human's just wander in out of the cold? The reason I ask is I see homeland's, or geography's for everyone but the Humans. Were they slaves to the elves? Underlings to the Giants? Nomads like the Orcs?

2. What level of technology is this world at? Dark Age seems unlikely, Renaissance? Per Industrial or even limited Industrial Revolution?

2008-01-24, 10:53 AM
1. Like I said, humans don't really have a shared culture identity. They come from a variety of various cities and villages scattered all over the world, migrating for one reason or another. The most likely story with any given human is that they lived in a prosperous city, then struck a "deal" with the elves, resulting in their homeland being raped of precious resources and forcing them to abandon their homeland. Either that or they lived as nomads until settling in Darik City. I don't plan on going into as much detail on countries or geography outside the city except to explain the origins of many races.

2. It's impossible to compare the technology level of this setting with any specific era. If you wanted to know just how modern the technology could possibly get, I'd say 1980's, as firearms are available (though rare and hard to get ahold of) as well as a lot of modern conveniences, but medieval weaponry and arcane forces are still the norm. Computers and phones don't exist, as arcane magic has pretty much replaced the need to create such things, and instead of electric or gas power, most generators run off of magic or energy bled off from other planes. There are some vehicles, mostly magitech motorcycles for the orcs and a few patrol cars for the local police department which also run off of magic or similar energy. A lot of the magitech inventions were brought over from the Mechanus plane by the Inevitables. All in all, you should see a little bit of everything tech-wise here. The city is littered with skyscrapers and apartment buildings, angels and devils stick to tuxedos and business suits rather than togas or robes, but you'll still find your average "adventurer" wielding swords or bows just as often as a gun.

2008-01-24, 04:38 PM
This post reserved for Tome of Battle stuff.

2008-01-27, 06:02 PM
Looks hreat, can't wait for more politics.

2008-04-15, 02:40 PM
Laws of Darik City

Most of what you would call "normal" laws still stand in Darik City, but a few other laws exist to account for its multitude of citizens.

No citizen of Darik City shall discriminate against any other citizen of Darik City based on alignment or the results of any divination spell.

In a world where devils hold CEO positions at major companies, we can't have paladins wandering around smiting hard-working citizens because their alignment slightly offends some class feature. "Detect Evil" is not probable cause, nor does it constitute a warrant of any kind, nor is it grounds for arrest. As long as the law is followed, not even the angels of Arkan are allowed to take action.

All rights of the living shall be guaranteed to any reanimated, intelligent species. Nonintelligent undead are considered property of their controller and as such are protected under state law so long as they do not pose a danger to other Darik City citizens.

Basically, vampires, liches, etc. have rights too. Zombies and such don't really have "rights" per say, but they can be hired as convenience store workers, manual labor, or anything their limited minds can comprehend. As long as the zombie doesn't try to tackle you and eat your brains, you can't just go up and hack 'em either.

Also, on a side note, any undead who require certain "sustenance" (brain, blood, flesh, etc.) can have it as long as they don't feast on Darik City citizens. There are synthetic plants for that sort of thing.

Divination spells targeted within a private domain constitute a breach of privacy and are illegal.

If the law catches you scrying on a woman in the shower, you're in trouble. Not highly enforced simply because of the difficulty of tracking such divinations, but can still get you in trouble. However, if the woman were in a public shower, there's no law against scrying there, thanks to the loophole in the law. Strangely enough, the Dienera family is not subject to this law due to various licenses and waivers.

The majority of magic, arcane or divine, requires appropriate licensing.

This one's on a case-by-case basis. Some spells (Prestidigitation, Ghost Sound, Light) etc. are so harmless that anyone can legally use them. Most spells, however, constitute some form of danger or potential illegal act so a license is required. Sorcerers who spontaneously cast these annoy the crap out of law enforcers as there's no solid way to enforce this law with them. "Unlawful use of magic", such as shooting a fireball into a crowd, or enchanting someone against their will, usually results in a suspension of revoking of the license depending on the severity of the act.