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  1. - Top - End - #1
    Dwarf in the Playground
    ReluctantDragon's Avatar

    Join Date
    Jun 2005

    Default Help Building a World!

    So, I'm going to try something out here. Depending on response, I will potentially do multiple posts concerning the subject.

    Creating a world!

    Doing a homebrew world, and prepping to introduce it to a new group. However I find myself running into a block in terms of more specific traits of the world.

    What I'd like from the community:

    Ideas, suggestions, pointers, etc.

    What I've got so far:

    The 'world' is comprised of a very large continent(about 1.5 times the size of Australia) located just north of the planet's equator. To the south-east of this continent is a somewhat smaller landmass (Australia size) comprised of mountains and desert. To the southwest lies another landmass of comparable size (again of Australia dimensions) comprised of lush forest-lands and open plains. Between the two southerly landmasses lies a large island (Greenland-sized). Given the setup of the landmasses, the farther south one travels, the colder it gets. To the extreme south (named the Sea of Fog) supposedly lies a mysterious land of strange creatures and queer folk. (Duhn-duhn-duhn!)

    The main political power, 'the empire' comprises most of the northern landmass. Multiple kingdoms and nations comprise the southwestern landmass and the southeastern landmass is wild for the most part, above ground anyway. Below ground, the Gnomish/Dwarven nation reigns supreme.

    This is a 'world' settling into a balance of sorts. A large war only recently ended about ten years before and the results are still felt. The empire remaining in charge is totalitarian. It is benign for the most part, save for some of its political intrigues and machinations, as well as concerning any remaining elements of the resistance that pop up. The empire deals with them harshly and without remorse. This empire pulls heavily from the classic Roman hierarchy. Emperor, Senate, and so on. Far reaching empire that pulls in cultural influences from the people that it incorporates. Other kingdoms/nations not under direct rule of the empire pay it nominal allegiance or credit. The farther from the empire you are the more its rule is negligible. So in effect outside nations not involved in the war are now getting used to the presence and effects of this empire.


    Changes include:
    No half-races(half-orcs, halflings, half-elves)
    No interbreeding amongst the races, resulting in the first 'change'.
    2 new races to replace the missing ones.

    Humans - Comprise a great deal of the 'empire's' population, better than 65%. They also are almost entirely the population of the southwestern continent, comprising the ruling race of nearly all of the kingdoms/nations there. For the most part in terms of culture and technology, the typical high medieval level.

    Dwarves/Gnomes - Offshoots of the same parent race, Dwarves and Gnomes are cousin races. They intermarry and relate, but no offspring results. The Gnomes generally have roles in service and government, the dwarves in industry. No pigeon-holing here, obviously there are exceptions. In terms of culture and technology, set up to renaissance times with a heavy Byzantine flavor.

    Elves - A race near extinction. The elves previously held the role of most prominent nation/race in the known world. After warring with the 'empire' they now are reduced to perhaps 10% of their population as of 50 years ago. They live in small secluded settlements and resent heavily the presence of the empire. The traits of elves are more aligned with their 'fey' heritage than typical fantasy. Mysterious and rare, they are looked upon in awe by your typical farmer. Much more akin to low medieval in terms of culture and technology. Again, fey influence is accentuated.

    Z'ard - A lizard race, this is a homebrew creation mimicking some of the traits of the lizardfolk race. Heavily influenced by nomadic cultures like the Native Americans and Inuit and Mongols. Worsippers of the elements and nature, the Z'ard are an ambivalent race who seek to simply be left alone. They are found nearly anywhere in the world and are tenacious foes. Low medieval and very Native American in flavor.

    Towr'an - The race that comprises the chief motivators of the 'empire'. A minotaur race based on the Dragonlance minotaurs. They are the ruling class in the empire and their stature and nature reflects their culture. Heavily Roman influenced with like technology, although they are beginning to incorporate gunpowder and steam technology based on dealings with the dwarves and gnomes.

    Mystery race - Up in the air in terms of this. I'm thinking maybe Xeph, or some human-appearing race. Virtually extinct as far as the current races are concerned. However, they once held power on the level of the Towr'an and the Elves previously. They can pop up sometime later.


    All the civilized races have pantheons they worship.

    The Dwarves/Gnomes have a Light/Dark different sides of the coin gods.

    The Minotaurs have a Triumvirate, representing a triangle where each point represents a god who balances out the other two.

    The human nations worship the Fates, based on North, South, East, West.

    There are three Elder Gods that I will work on that, for the most part are unknown by the common populations.

    So, what I'm looking for here is assistance. Given what I've provided so far, help flesh out a nation/race. Supply ideas for events and occurences. I'm just wanting to make this world a bit more defined.

    Thanks to anyone who helps!

    If you put water into a cup, it becomes the cup. You put water into a bottle and it becomes the bottle. You put it in a teapot it becomes the teapot. Now, water can flow or it can crash. Be water my friend.

    Proud owner of a Ceikatar! (Jealous much?)

  2. - Top - End - #2
    Troll in the Playground
    Join Date
    Jul 2007

    Default Re: Help Building a World!

    Thoughts on the Towr'an Religion:

    Instead of a standard triumvirate, the Towr'an belief system consists of the three Pillars, each of which holds up one part of what the Towr'an call their Three-Part World. This takes away heavily personified deities, and instead each Pillar is frequently associated with an abstract concept (none of which could be construed as "good" or "evil").

    The Towr'an also have a large set of saints, which they refer to as "Heroes". While the church officially reveres the three Pillars, there are Heroes associated with many actions and days (picture the position of Catholic saints in the 1600s), with altars in every building.

    Thoughts on the Elder Gods:

    Instead of making the "Elder Gods" these great primordial world-creators, what if the Elder Gods were gods worshipped by early man? They would be savage gods, most of them more beast than man, useful in the days when the world's only sentient beings were bands of hunter-gatherers, before the written word or agriculture.

    Something like...

    Mata, the All-Mother, was the first of all gods to be worshiped by man. It was from her that all races were born. Though she walks on two legs, she herself is little more than an animal, but deep magic lies in her powerful womb. She is the first mother, and she is raw fertility. In her life she has given birth hundreds, thousands of times. She is old and scarred, with great belly and hanging breasts, but hundreds of years after her first born child became the leader of the first tribe of thinking men, she would be sought out by all those who were strong and virile to lay their seed in her, for her offspring were powerful and marked.

    Her magic is beastly but powerful, though its practice is nearly forgotten. After a millenium of birthing, her womb finally ran dry, and now she gives birth by possessing powerful priestesses, who participate in cruel rites to have the honor of acting as vessel for one of the All-Mother's children. Were she intelligent enough to use her strengths, she could become one of the most powerful gods, but instead she lives alone, as an old she-bear in a cave, occasionally letting the dangerous sparks of fertility and passion ignite her rare worshipers.

    Human Religion:

    Which Fate the humans worship is dictated by the great Star Calendar, existing on a remote mountaintop in the south-east landmass. One of the first civilized races of men built this calendar, which uses the rotation of the world and its relation to the stars and constellations to determine the Astral Season. There are four Astral Seasons, each of which corresponds to one of the four Fates, and during this Season, that Fate is to be worshiped exclusively (though many city-dwellers break this habit).

    The Star Calendar is studied by a monastery, one of the oldest known organizations among humans.

    There is also tell of a prophesied night when the stars abandon the world, for just a single night. Though no one knows quite when it will occur, there is a possible combination of stars that would result in no Fate having precedence, for one single night. This night, when it occurs, is to be humanity's greatest test, for in the absence of the Fates, many evil presences will move in, attempting to wrench the world out of the Fates' stern but tender control.

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