Thematic Elements

2 posts / 0 new
Last post
My new 4th edition campaign setting will be called Jadida Alam. I have asked many of you for advice on this subject before, and as usual, you have all been very helpful. However, I again seek the advice of the brain-trust.

Jadida Alam is a bronze age egyptian/arabic setting (pre Mohammed). I have been made aware of Al Qadim previously released for 2nd edition, and while I have some documents from this setting it is not exactly what we are aiming for.
That being said, what I am looking for now would be a list of single word themes that might summarize the setting. More importantly, I would like to keep this list of thematic elements with me while I am creating scenarios, and while I am actively DMing. The point being sort of flash cards to keep me on track. What are some of the driving story elements that permeate the era.

An example of this would be the word "Cursed"
This will remind me that curses were everywhere from mummies tombs to the ancestors of kings. Seeing this word will remind me of the mind-set of the populace.

So, If I am making any sense at all, and you feel you could throw out some single word ideas (or more words...its up to you) that might help flavor the campaign, I would be forever in your gratitude.
I took a break from my current thoughts on my campaign to pen a few terms

Words for Egyptian/Arabic campaign

Water - everything is focused on the presence of water
Oasis - whether it be a well or a spring it is where water can be found
Sand - it gets into everything from the food to clothes to every part of your life
Hot - When the sun is up it can burn your skin from your flesh
Cold - When the sun is down it can get so cold that you can suffer from exposure
Slaves - Slaves are part of society and actively traded
Silk - actually a later discovery and the formation of the silk road led to great merchant caravans and riches but it is still often linked to this type of setting. Cloth sale though is still important.
Monuments - Pyramids, obelisks, and temples constructed on a monolithic scale
Floods - yearly flooding and flash flooding can kill people in the desert
Bedouin - again a later term but people that live in the desert and know the secrets of the deserts
Stone - Stone is used in all the large construction
Grain - It is the original 'bread basket of the world' and everyone comes to Egypt to trade for grain
Ships - great ships and ports move the grain around the known world making merchants wealthy
Pharaoh - divine ruler of the Egyptians
Priests - priests are powerful and control much power
Great Library - Great Library of Alexandria is a later edition but still a great image of the knowledge of the world gathered for scholars to study. Scholars, doctors, engineers, and architects can be found.
Chariots - Chariots are the measure of a country's strength in battle
Huge - All the riches and money means that everything is far more numerous then other parts of the world and on a grander scale. The army is larger, the cities larger, and the people more numerous.
Papyrus - they type of material for writing of scrolls
Reeds - reeds from river are used to make baskets and make papyrus