View Full Version : [City] Illithihumana

The Demented One
2005-07-01, 11:29 PM
Introduction: Before you lies a vast city, full of buildings shaped like glass domes. As you walk through it's streets, you see a shocking sight: mind flayers and humans existing in harmony! Human spellcasters buying rare components from illithid merchants, illithid psions mentoring advertising classes in psionics, a large sign on what must be a hospital dome requesting that old or dying humans consider donating their brains post mortem. As you walk through the streets in wonder, you hear a ferocious sound. A huge glass dome houses a huge number of caged hydras, with humans and illithids harvesting their brains. As you approach the center of the city, you see a huge, majestic sight: A tremoundes brain, basking in a pool of brine. Written on the brain's containing tub, in Common and Undercommon is the title, "The Eldest Brain".

Size: Metropolis
Adult Population:

-50% Human
-20% Illithid
-5% Half-Illithids
-5% Elves
-5% Gnomes
-5% Other
-1% Dromites*

*Illithihumana's Dromite population lives underneath the deepest levels of the city proper, as renegades. Generally, any dromite that enters the city proper will be captured-Illithihumana's city guards are generally imbued with Permanent True Seeing spells that render illusion spells worthless. They are then either sent back to the underground, or executed if psionic probing has found they have commited serious crimes.

GP Limit-100,000 gp

Citizen Wealth

5%-100,000 gp or more
10%-50,000-100,000 gp
15%-10,000-50,000 gp
20%-1,000-10,000 gp
40%-500-1000 gp
5%-100-500 gp
5%-100 gp or less

Background Information: Two hundred years ago, what is now known as Illithihumana was made up of the human city of Skerrako and the subterranean Illithid city of Lerathar. For as long as the two cities existed, their had been conflict between the two, as well as with the relentless swarm of dromites who lived beneath even Lerathar.

The humans and illithids had fought against each other so long that their armies were reduced to shambles. After ten years of almost no dromite activity, a swarm of more than a million dromites flooded into both cities!

The city of Skerrako was razed to the ground. The human army stood no chance against the psionic dromites, and all Skerrakians were enslaved. The mind flayers, with psionic powers to match those of the dromites, were able to hold out longer, but at a great cost: the illithids escaped caputre, but each and every one of their Elder Brains was killed. Without the guidance of their leaders, the illithids stood no chance of survival. Brave illithids allowed their brains to be harvested for the creation of an elder brain, but it soon became obvious that there weren't enough illithids to from an elder brain.

All hope seemed lost for the mind flayers, until a lone human stepped in to the site of the elder brain's creation. "I am Liathat", he said. "I am leader of a group of humans who have escaped the dromites. I offer myself to the creation of the elder brain". The illithids were shocked, but too desperate to refuse. Liathat's brain was not the only human brain incorporated. Many his band of freed slaves, who numbered in the thousands, had their brains included in the Elder Brain.

This elder brain, now known to all citizens of Illithihumana was more powerful than any normal Elder Brain, for the sysnthesis of human and illithid mind unlocked psionic powers far beyond those of either race. The dromites were purged from Lerathar, and the illithids expected to reign supreme over the humans once more.

But something had changed in the illithids of Lerathar. They had seen humans, their hated enemies, lay down their lives so that illithids might live. Even the greatest human-hater found he could not bring himself to harm the noble men and women. Instead, the illithids restored Skerrako to greatness, better than it was before the Dromite Invasion. The illithids, after rebuilding the city, decided to live with the humans in it. Many humans feared the illithids, but far more recognized the illithids as their savior, and excepted them into their community. The son of Liathat, Miajanno, and the mind flayer ruler, Sorrovian, were installed as the twin rulers of the city. The iity that was no longer Skerrako, nor Lerathar, but something new: the city of Illithihumana.

Physical Description: The city is made of 9 concentric rings of glass domes, all centered around the eldest brain. The rings, from center to ring are:

1st Ring: The site of the main government buildings: The Rulership Quad Dome, The Justice Quad Dome, the Finance Quad Dome, and the Magic Quad Dome. These domes are where almost all government employees work, the others working in the government-owned businesses of the 2nd Ring. 20% of all citizens are government employees.

2nd Ring: This ring is made up of various government businesses, including the Hydra Farms, where dominated hydras have their brains harvested for distribution to illithid citizens, the Agriculture Dome, where crops and food animals are raised under an artificial, magical; "sun", and the other mundane facilities required for running a city.

3rd Ring: This ring is composed of the building for the various commerce guilds. the ring is composed of 14 domes, but, what with the coming and going of various guilds, only 6 are currently occupied. These are the Grocery Guild, where citizens can purchase foreign or rare foods to supplement the government-supplied meals they receive, the Manufactured Goods guild, where citizens can buy the various luxuries of life not already supplied by the government in the Home Domes, the Magic Goods guild, where magic items, from everburning torches to bags of holding can be purchased by wealthier citizens, and the only all-mage guild, the Hired Services guild, where citizens can rent the services of butlers, maids, or messengers, the Transportation guild, which provides taxi service in the city and magic-powered wagons out of it, the Recreation guild, which rents out sports courts, provides exotic vacations with the help of the Transportation guild, and sells various games and sporting equipment to the citizenry. Guild membership costs an initiial entry fee of 500 gp, and an annual fee of 100 gp. 50% off all citizens are Guild Employees.

4th Ring: The 4th ring is actually made up of two half-rings: One for psionic facilities, one for arcane facilities. These include training schools for wizards and psions in the making, artifice schools run by the Magic Goods guild, and various schools for those who choose to specialize in a specific arcane school or psionic discipline for those who finish training school. 5% of all citizens work in a Magic or Psionic facility.

5th Ring: Citizens may buy or rent the domes of the 5th to run their own businesses. Popular businesses are arcane or psionic education courses, where citizens who wish to master useful spells or powers without becoming full-fledged wizards or psions can do so, shops that compete with guilds in selling services, as well as the
stores where citizens can buy hand-crafted items rather than the mass-manufactured goods guilds sell. 15% off all citizens work in or own a citizen-owned business

6th-8th Rings: The 6th, 7th, and 8th rings are massive, far larger than all the others combined. These consist of citizen-owned home domes, stocked with basic neccesities of life, which all citizens are given access to free of charge by the government.

9th ring: The 9th ring consists of home domes available for rent to visitors to the city. Rates go from 1 gp a night for small, two man domes, two 200 gp a night for the larger domes nicknamed "mansion domes". Citizens sometimes choose to rent out such domes, so they may hold parties and celebrations without disturbing their home, or because they need to leave home so it can be cleaned, renovated, or such.

Arts and Culture: Illithihumana's artists are all mages or psions who master the arts of illusion. Citizens can attend "illusion theaters", where a play is acted out by an all-illusion cast, "ghost concerts", where the ghost sound spell is put to great use, or even "dream halls", where the dream spell is used to create a nocturnal performance.

Religion: The people of Illithihumana are generally atheistic. Religions are tolerated as long as their teachings don't conflict with Illithihumana's values of peace and co-operation, but rare. One religion does exist that has a fair amount of worshipperss (15% of the populace)-Illithihumanism, which reveres the Eldest Brain, Liathat, and Sorrovian as god-like figures.

Government:Illithihumanic goverment is divided into 4 sections, known as quads.

The Rulership quad is headed by the two leaders-one illithid, on human, by tradition-responsible for the leadership of the people-descisionmaking, lawmaking, foreign relations, and other matters of state.

The Justice quad, headed by a group of 10 psions and wizards, is responsible for the finding of lawbreakers, the psionic or magical mind probing to determine what crimes have been committed, and punishment of any wrongdoers (more in the crime section). The Justice quad's methods are efficient enough that, over the years, it has gradually dwindled to the point where only about 500 people are justice quad employees. That is all that is needed.

The Finance quad is the largest quad, and is headed by a council of 100 merchants, nobles, mages, and psions. It is responisble for minting money, maintaining local merchant guilds, regulating taxes, running state owned companies, such as the hydra farms, and, most importantly, arranging the sale of spells and psionics to wealthy foreign customers, the source of Illithihumana's great wealth.

The Magic quad is the second largest quad. It has no traditional head. Instead, it is run by every magic user or psion in the city. This group votes on issues such as magical and psionic schooling, spell component imports and exports, development of new spells, creating magic items, assisting the Justice quad in crimes involving powerful mages or psions, and running the Duel Arcanomentis.

Crime: Crime is very rare in Illithihumana-when the police can fly, turn invisible, and read thoughts, few think of wrongdoing. Those that do are inevitably captured by the Justice quad's elite police force of Eldritch Knights and Psychic Warriors. A quick mind scan is used to determine guilt or innocence.

Those found guilty are sentenced based on their crimes. Minor crimes, such as petty theft, vandalism, inadvertanly causing harm to another, selling items over guild rates-results in having to recompense any victims, and possibly having to spend a few days to a month in the hydra farms-hardly harsh labor, when all that is required is pointing a magical item designed for the task of severing a hyrda's head-and only a hyrda's head-activating it, scooping out and preserving the brain, and waiting for the head to regrow for 8 hours, and then going home.

Major crimes-assault, accidental killing, major theft, massive property damage-result in paying damages to any victiims, as well as a period of 1 to 20 years on the hydra farms

Serious crimes-murder, rape torture-are almost never committed. When done so, they are punishable by death.

The Monument: The Eldest Brain stands in the center of Illithihumana, psionically levitated out from beneath the city. It is contained within a golden tub filled with brine, and protected with an unpenetrable psionic barrier. The Eldest Brain empathetically connects with those around it, shielding their minds and enhancing their knowledge. Those within 100 feet of the Brain are immune to mind-affecting effects, fear effects, get a +5 insight bonus to all will saves, and a +8 enhancment bonus to Int, Wis, and Cha.

Power Struggles: Illithihumana is relatively peaceful, having only one true power struggle: The endless conflict between mages and psions. Generally, this is nothing more than harmless competition, although occasionally things get out of hand, which is when the Justice and Magic quads are called in.

In order to prevent such struggles from escalating to dangerous levels more often, the Duel Arcanomentis, a grand competition between all mages and psions. The dual takes place twice yearly-once on the anniversary of the founding of Illithihumana's major Arcane College, and again on the anniversary of the Psionic College's founding. The competition takes place on a floating platform that levitates over the Eldest Brain, just within range of its empathic link.

The platform bears many powerful enchantments meant to insure a lack of fatalities, the most important one being that all spells and psionic powers can only deal non-lethal damage, all ability drain is replaced by ability damage, permament magic effects have their duration reduced to 1d4 days, and all death attacks are automatically countered.

Generally, all mages and psions enter the competition, in one of five skill brackets-Apprentice, Competent, Master, Archamage, and Epic. The citizenry of Illithihumana watches from levitating bleachers, and cheer on their favorites.

The winner in each bracket receives a small reward. The winner of the Apprentice bracket receives one thousand gp. The winner of the Competent bracket receives 5000 gp, Master, 10,000 gp, Archamage, 15,000 gp, and Epic, 20,000 gp.

Adventure Hooks:

-The PC's discover that a gang of dromites are attempting to poison the nourishing brine of the Eldest Brain, but can't convince the Justice quad of this, due Psionic Suggestions, made by human agents of the dromites in the Justice quad to their co-workers, that no such event is happening. Now, only the PC's can save the Eldest Brain.

-The PC's hear rumors that a poweful artifact is being offered as a reward for the Epic level of this year's Duel Arcanomentis.

-A mishap occurs during the Duel Arcanomentis that dispel all magic and psionics within Illithihumana. The vital spells are re-cast in a matter of hours-but the binding that contained the Hydras at the farms have been dispelled, and the beasts now run rampant throughout the city.

-PC's discover an infestation of giant vermin in the home dome they rent.

Winged One
2005-07-02, 12:56 AM
I like the concept. Just my 2cp.

The Glyphstone
2005-07-02, 06:57 AM
That's just 'casue your obsessed with half-breeds. ;D But yeah, it's cool.

The Demented One
2005-07-02, 11:24 AM
And yes, there will be half-illithids.

2005-07-02, 02:28 PM
That sounds kind of disturbing....Nice city though

2005-07-02, 02:40 PM
nice idea, anything that contains mind flayers is cool anyway :D

Seriously, it's original :)

Winged One
2005-07-02, 02:41 PM
Is it even possible to have a half-illi...half-ithi...half-squid thingy? And I am not obsessed with half-breeds, I just like acting like I am. :P ::)

2005-07-02, 05:58 PM
Yes, according to Fiend Folio, a half-ilithid is an illithid tadpole that is stuck inside of a humanoid. It is really nasty... just... wrong...

Nice city, D... very odd but original

2005-07-03, 08:38 AM
what's an illithid tadpole?

2005-07-03, 11:06 AM
This is very cool....and extremely creepy at the same time O.o

2005-07-03, 06:33 PM
Definitely a cool city, I'm very impressed.

Those hydras must be getting pretty pissed off though. ;D

Oh! Speaking of pissed off, what do other Illithids think of your city? It seems like alien Illithids might be very angry at a bunch of their brethren stooping to the level of living with beings that should be slaves and food, perhaps they would engage in sabotage or even outright warfare, to destroy this counterexample to their way of life?

2005-07-03, 08:19 PM
what's an illithid tadpole?

That is how Illithids procreate... They drop a tadpole into the victims ear, they eat away at the brain until they take over and POOF, Illithid city!

The Demented One
2005-07-03, 08:32 PM
I'll be getting to why the hyrdas aren't kill/destroying eventually.

Winged One
2005-07-04, 12:06 AM
What is a dromite?

The Demented One
2005-07-04, 12:10 AM
See the XPH. Psionic cockroaches, pretty much.

2005-07-04, 04:16 AM
argh! the cockroaches are coming to get us!

Winged One
2005-07-04, 10:34 PM
And why do they seem to hate this city?

2005-07-04, 11:57 PM
Read the history. This city represents their failure, their ultimate undoing, the final strike to their kind.

The Demented One
2005-07-05, 12:26 AM
The Dromites are generally neutral. They were at war with the illithids originally due to illithid's being evil, and their tendency to munch on Dromite brains. They fought the humans to take their supplies, capture valuable strategic routes that led to illithid citadels. Basically, they were trying to eliminate the mind flayers, and the humans were just collateral. When Illithihumana was made, the Dromites remained rebellious prety much for the reasons in the last post.

2005-07-11, 10:29 PM
The process that might create half-ithillids is seems somewhat... unsavory. It just seems so wrong on so many levels.

The Demented One
2005-07-11, 11:19 PM
Illithid reproduction is done in one of two ways: A volunteer allows an illithid tadpole to consume his brain and create an illithid or half-illithid, or the clone spell is used to create a lifeless body used as a host. The latter is far more common.

2005-07-11, 11:26 PM
A nice concept, I like it.

The Demented One
2005-07-30, 07:45 PM
Almost voting time...BUMP!