In my campaign the world is stuck by a major catastrophe which basically sends the world into a period of anarchy. Food supply is short, wild beasts ravage townships and there is no form of government to protect and guide the people. This happens all over the world and causes cities and towns to turn to more savage instincts to survive. Some make pacts with beastmen (any non-traditional race such as gnolls, centuars and giants) others side with cults, guilds and factions previously hunted down before the catastrophe (a town might ask for the thieves guild help since they smuggle supplies which are short on supply). And other less fortunate towns resort to raiding, looting pillaging and in some cases cannibalism.
The cause of the catastrophe is unknown, but is changes landscapes (moves mountains, floods plains, corrupts lands and fertile areas), mutates creatures and kills anyone who have any sort of magical prowess (anyone who can cast spells). Since the world was driven by magic as well as governed by people devoted to it this affects the world significantly.
Because the catastrophe is linked to magic many people have formed a hatred for it. So far I have developed three major factions that influence the campaign world.
The first is “the magistrate” this faction include individuals who were once in power before the catastrophe, their aim is to reclaim what was once theirs. The problem is many hate them and blame them for what they did. However the magistrate has the advantage of many rulers of different provinces wanting them to reclaim the throne, so they can keep theirs.
The second faction is the “burning dawn,” the burning dawn is a faction that was created by segregating themselves from the magistrate. They are totally against magic and have a zealot mentality approach to ruling. Their goal is to take the throne and eradicate magic to prevent any further damage. The advantage they have is that most people believe that magic is bad due to the catastrophe.
The last faction is called the “bleeding pact,” the bleeding pact is a conglomeration of many different guilds, factions and cults that have formed an unsettling and fragile alliance. Factions include the thieves guild, the dark priests and the stone guard. The bleeding pact is a bunch of factions that gained power during the lawless period due to their connections. Many of these factions were persecuted before the catastrophe and see this as an opportunity to rule.
The savage and lawless period after the catastrophe is brief but it leads to the second phase of the world which is rebuilding. Since magic is all but gone, except in individuals born after the catastrophe people look towards technology to solve their problems where magic had once been (irrigation, plumbing, transportation ect). This causes a huge surge in technology, where once the world was in a more medieval period, technology starts to bring the world into a more steam punk theme. Another cool aspect is that the loss of magic causes thing that worked solely on magic remain in disarray(example: a floating castle, that now lays in ruins on the grassy plains flipped on its side, some rooms unreachable).
I would like to develop some more cool concepts for my campaign world but I’m fresh out.
First off I would like to show that technology is on the rise and include some basic yet important technological advances. My first thought was firearms and the printing press but I would like to see what you guys think. I want to go for early stages of technology as this is very much a traditional fantasy world.
Secondly what kind of factions do you think would benefit from the world going into ruins and what types of societies would form? I thought the cannibalistic society was pretty cool but I’d like to see what you guys can come up with.
Lastly, while I do have the magistrate and the burning dawn pretty hammered out, the bleeding pact is way less developed since it is made up of many different factions. Do any of you have ideas on other factions that would be part of the bleeding pact?
I’m really bad at coming up with good faction names so if any of you have suggestions for names I already have feel free to tell me them. Also if you have any questions about my campaign world just ask, I know it’s hard to convey my ideas for a whole world in one post.