Ten Important FactsThe following ten points will help with understanding the state of life in Vinramar, and provide the basic knowledge any player character would have.
1. The War of Eternity continues between Daemoth and Jharell. These two gods have rallied hosts of other gods and powerful beings to their allegiance. Much of the bloodshed and combat in this war takes place outside of the Material Realm, beyond the cares of the average mortal, but some occurs in the confines of Vinramar as well.
The followers of Jharell have gone into hiding, and are hunted by the Daemothites. This new turn of the tide has changed the nature of the war from open battle to a climate of more secretive means. Both sides send agents and priests on secret quests to gain powerful artifacts, to assassinate prominent enemies, and do anything that might give their god an advantage.
2. Humans have multiplied and become an overwhelmingly dominant race in Vinramar. Their nations stretch to each corner of the world, and have colonized and enslaved many regions and races. The most prominent colonial kingdom is Trentsmund, followed by the empires of Motta and Arrochule. The dwarves, goliaths, and dragonborn are often seen as slaves and servants to human masters. Tieflings and heathfolk are also quite common, and are considered to be among the dominant races.
3. The races that the humans have enslaved have become secluded and reduced in number. Dwarves, goliaths, and the dragonborn all have dwindled with the dominance of humanity. Even the elves, eladrin, and halflings are now rarely to be seen. Adventurers taking on a character of non-human race should study the nuances of these groups in the Darkplane universe, as well as the cultural and social ramifications of their being different. For this reason, many races that are considered playable in the core works are only creatures in Vinramar, not represented in great enough numbers to be taken as serious adventurers. Still, the future may yet reveal new forces that could rival those of the dominant races.
4. Magic is held under suspicion by most people. The average folk of the human nations do not come into contact with the arcane very often, and so consider it to be dangerous and self-indulgent for anyone to dabble in that art. Magical weapons are sold only in underground markets by those who have the skill to appraise and understand their worth. Potions can occasionally be found for sale by herbalists and medicine women. Anyone performing a spell in plain sight will be treated with extreme hostility by local authorities and townspeople.
Divine and primal magic are more accepted but uncommon. The servants of Daemoth and other evil gods are treated with respect in most human and tiefling communities, even if the people are not generally religious. They are not used to seeing “miracles” performed in the form of divine magic, but will greet such a sight with pleasant surprise in most cases. Primal magic is much more common outside of the colonial nations.
5. The Realms of Existence are closely connected, but the Spheres are separated. These Realms (Primordial, Shadow, Spirit, Material, and High) each exist in the same physical space, one layered upon another. Certain creatures have sight and sense that extend to other Realms, allowing them to see the unseen across the veil. The Spheres of Existence, however, are in different physical space, but lined along the axis of each Realm. The world of Jarden Grohg, for example, is at a higher sphere, but within the same Material Realm as Vinramar.
6. There is no Common Tongue, spoken by all races. Instead, each region of the world has a regional language that is understood by all natives to that region. Where the Player’s Handbooks and other core rulebooks designate a creature as speaking Common, that creature will instead speak the language of its native region.
7. Unaligned gods may occasionally participate in the War of Eternity, but do not have solid allegiance with either side. Their own goals are their priority, not the conflicts of others, even though the two may happen to coincide at times.
8. Rapid advancement of technology has left some nations with an extreme advantage in warfare. Recent inventions, including improved armor and weaponry, clocks, rudimentary machinery, and other impressive innovations, have all contributed to the dominance of the colonial nations, and the weakening of more tribal cultures and races. The invention of the firearm has created a underground culture of technologically interested gunslingers and engineers, more prominent among heathfolk and the eastern humans.
9. The jharethil have employed powerful magic to transport their cities from Vinramar to the High Realm world of Strovoch. These hidden cities hover in unseen space, and can be accessed through special gateways in Vinramar for those who know their secrets. Those who do not have dealings with the jharethil have a vague knowledge that hidden communities exist, but that’s the limit of their understanding.
10. The dead vampire lord Volgothyde has recently gained godhood, and joined the Unholy Court of Daemoth. A resurgence of undead activity and vampirism has struck the entire world of Vinramar, as the ancient servants of the emperor rise again in power. The forces of good are desperately fighting to keep the undead at bay, and weaken the new god’s foothold.
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