" Five Corners Square. You kids don't remember it the way it was before, not many folk do. God's blood, but what a town! Men of all places trading and fighting and loving their way into the heart of the place. The theater, the great temples on the hills, the arena! And the women! Lads, you've never met the like. Fierce and subtle they were, Eldarin goddesses and doughty dwarf maidens...if I were a younger man, my sons, if I were a younger man."
"I was a boy when it first happened. Like a wave it came straight away from the temples, a bleedin' tsunami of magic. Them that got hit were changed, twisted into freaks and monsters. Their souls gobbled up by that wave, they turned on friends, wives, husbands. Bleak days."
"Seven more times it happened. Them that survived, them that the gods spared built the walls around Five Corners Square. The city beyond is grown thick and our farmers do what they can to feed us, but this winter won't be the first time we eat rats from the sewers."
"Things must change, my sons. Those Lost Citizens batter at our doors and steal our children. And still there are no answers. Not from the priests, not from the wizards (gods kill the lot of them), and not from the mobs that run things now. Gods willing, we'll survive."
now i've read some of the stuff coming out of the Races and Classes book:
( Told by an old man, telling the tale his father had told him )
It was a grand place, the old empire. The Crusades sent our greatest off to fight against the Ijari folk to the south, seeking to take back the great book of the faith, and the empire was rich with the wealth of the Ijari and of our grand lands. All men ate well and drank their fill, and never lacked for a good days work and a fair wage. Then, the Ijari were gone, all of a sudden like, and the knights and armies came home. The Knights came to claim their demesnes but those they had left to rule them in their stead would not return them. So the knights went to the Emperor, who ordered the lands returned to them. The usurpers would not, and declared themselves not of the empire, and a war began over the lands of the empire. Brother against brother it was, and with the empire fighting amongst itself, nobody saw what had called away the ijari armies. in the distant south a terror trapped by ancient magics, the dark land of Medi had arisen - the Devil touched folk were at war with the Ijari and travelling north. in their wake a strange affliction touched the land, changing magic and twisting the land in to wilder more terrible forms, and creatures the like of which had never been seen appeared in the chaos. on reaching the imperial lands, the Medi called up their most terrible beasts and the empire was torn asunder. The imperial armies rose up but the power of the Medi and their beasts was too great.
In the north, a great hero whose tales are legend, Lord Ulric, rose up and called upon an ancient pact, summoning up the Dragons. Lord Ulric, his Dragonriders and the last remains of the imperial armies fought a great war that lasted for half a mans lifetime. Much of what was before has been lost, but the Medi were defeated, and their homeland destroyed. The soldiers and servants of the Medi, the Teiflings, were left to wander, without a home to return to. The River folk came out of their hiding places and lived much as they always have. The Dwarves, who once hid away in their mountain holds far to the north now travel the land seeking wealth in the earth that was once the empire, as do the elves, who have appeared from their mysterious places and now seek to hold the forests and wild places as their own. Lord Ulrics dragons, their oath fulfilled, settled and laid their eggs, which hatched in to the Dragonborn, who are the young of the Dragons. Tales tell the mightiest of the Dragonborn will one day become the next generation of Dragons.
Our village has lasted well these years, but we are too few to survive against the raids of the forest creatures for much longer.
Here's the world I plan to run. I've grabbed some ideas from the Races and Classes book, Wyatt's Points of Light article, the Spellplague idea that's been talked about for FR, and other random bits and pieces.
It is the year 1578 After War (AW) in the Silver Vale, population 1162. It is home to humans, dwarves, elves, eladrin, halflings, and dragonborn alike. It is a peaceful land, nestled between the Greatshield Mountains to the North, West, and South and the Dark Sea to the east. The Vale provides all that it's inhabitants need: food of all sorts from the sea, the hearty soil, livestock, and roaming elk; water from mountain streams and reliable rainfall; and most of all, protection.
The town of Safehaven has grown ever since settlers escaped from the darkness through Thadal Barakin (roughly translated to Fate's Pass, or is it Fatal Pass?) and closed the large stone doors, never to be opened again. The Shield Dwarves have sworn to defend the doors at all costs, and it has become a deep seeded part of their culture. Stories of death and horror cause many to believe that behind those doors is what their religion calls Hell, while others feel it could be Heaven. Since nothing has attacked the doors in over 1400 years, even the dwarves are unsure of what they are defending.
The Spellplague was a horrible weapon used by evil mages during the War of the Gods which had devastating effects. In order to prevent this from reoccurring, arcane magic as it was known was forbidden upon arrival in the Vale. Spellbooks were burned and those caught practicing were sentenced to death. By 300 AW, magic was forgotten and soon became nothing but mythology. In 972 AW, the elf named Venicio discovered a way to pass into another plane known as the Feywild. He also tapped into a new form of magic. This caused strife within the Elven community and some Elves (still known as Elves) left Safehaven in favor of the Briarbush Woods and a stronger connection with nature. Those who stayed and learned to work in harmony with the Feywild and this new magic became known as the Eladrin. Still, magic is frowned upon and many fear it, so those who understand its mysteries typically keep them secret, only sharing with family members and other trusted individuals. Because of this, magic is very limited in the community. Several counsel members are rumored to dabble in the arcane.
Divine magic has never been lost, but it has changed over the years. The Spellplague and the War of the Gods changed the connection between man and the gods. Spells work differently then they once did, but it has been so for long enough that the old way has been forgotten.
Today, the community of the Silver Vale is very family-oriented. Early-age marriage and high birth rate is common among the Eladrin and Humans, who commonly intermarry and live in the heart of the town. Dragonborn and Halflings also live in Safehaven, but do not intermarry (primarily due to physical difficulties in breeding). The Dwarven and Elven communities tend to be fairly close-knit and separate from the others, preferring to teach their own ways and live in their separate sections of the Vale (the Greatshield Mountains and the Briarbush Woods respectively). Some Dwarves and Elves have homes in the town of Safehaven, but it is the exception (usually counsel members and their families) and not the rule.
The government of the Vale exists in the form of a counsel, with three members of each of the six races voting for the greater good. The eldest counsel member holds the 19th spot and is deemed "the Speaker", but their vote is only used in the case of a tie. The current Speaker is an Eladrin woman named Frelinda Lustrae. Counsel members are members for life but they do not confer their status on their heirs. When a human dies, for example, two humans (out of the many who apply) are selected by the counsel as the best candidates for the job and the human populace votes on who will take the position.
While barter is a common practice among the community, the dwarves of the Vale have retained (and created) currency in the form of copper, silver, and gold coins. Transportation between the forest, mountains, and other locations is made easy by an extensive system of rivers and creeks. The halflings of the community have become known for their skills in utilizing boats on the rivers to make the entire Vale more efficient. While they don't venture far out into the Dark Sea due to fear of the unknown, their boats can always be seen sailing the waters hauling in fish and crabs.
Three large buildings mark the center of town: The Market - All of those who craft, gather, mine, fish, or hunt make regular trips to the market house. There, the Merchant's Guild (an enterprising group of humans) will buy and sell all manner of goods to make trade between the Vale's residents much easier. Occassionally, when rare items are made or found, they are auctioned off to the highest bidder (with a small percent going to the Guild).
The Town Hall - An enormous building, large enough for the entire populace, where the counsel meets in public and where they make announcements to the townsfolk. Punishment for crimes is also decided upon by the counsel after an open trial. The traditional penalties of hangings, beheadings, floggings, etc. are enforced in the square outside. However, these are extremely rare due to an almost non-existant crime rate (once every few years or so).
The Temple - Another large building with very ornate architecture. Stained glass windows are rampant with images of dieties, demigods, angels, and devils. The people of the veil are Polytheistic: people offer prayers and make sacrifices to different gods for different occassions. Each good god has its own shrine in the temple, and the clergy who live inside the church walls are helpful and friendly to all. The temple has a many windowed tower (The Tower of Troubles) where those who are dubbed "insane" are "sent to live." It is in fact a cell for them where the clergy come to try to exorcise the demons. Like the crime rate, the insanity rate is extremely low (once every decade or so), and those who are so afflicted usually do not have long lifespans. -------------------------------------------------------------------------
I have developed a good start to the campaign that will cause the PCs to leave the Vale through the doors and into the old unknown world.
Essentially, what they will find is the PoL setting, a world torn apart by war between the Tieflings (humans who were cursed after bringing demons into the world) and Dragonborn (created by Bahamut to stop the demons). The Spellplague was created by a Tiefling Warlock with the intent of weakening the other races before the attack. It worked, as only the Dragonborn and Tieflings were immune. A clan of dwarves offered protection behind the Greatshield mountains, leading to the founding of Safehaven in the Silver Vale. Many members of the good races took them up on this offer, and even the Dragonborn sent some of their elderly, women and children.
The Dragonborn were able to push back the demons, but were struck by surprise by enterprising Tieflings, hoping to finish their conquest. Fortunately, the Dragonborn were much too strong. Both races were decimated. Today, in some areas, Tieflings have their own wicked cities. In other areas, Dragonborn and the other species live. I will not let my players play Tieflings (at least at first) and I'm thinking any that they do meet will either be outright evil, or will be attempting to be good. Those attempting to be good will have to show it physically, by grinding down their horns (ala Hellboy). This is very demeaning to them and thus good Tieflings will be extremely rare (partly because I think that the idea of good demons is lame, kind of like good Drow).
One thousand years ago, Shalana Silvermyst. Queen of the Eladrin-in-Exile, united the Seven Kingdoms against the Orcish Hordes and Laminok, their God-King. Together, the eladrin-in-exile kingdom of Tavanion, the elven kingdom of Faerinwold, the dwarven kingdom of Kurdenheim, the halfling lands of Dalenshire, the goblin kingdom of Gristamere, and the human kingdoms of Norhast and Summerlund turned back the power of the Orcish Hordes and established their peaceful lands.
Seven hundred years ago, King Aldwyn Tarmoore of Summerlund re-united the Seven Kingdoms formally. Aldwyn's own twin sister, Adala Tarmoore, had become the terrible Witch-Queen, and he led the Seven Kingdoms to victory against her army of undead and abominations.
Three-hundred years ago, the Witch-Queen's evil rose again. This time, however, the goblins of Gristamere betrayed the alliance of the Seven Kingdoms, and the world fell back into darkness.
It's a valid question. The person wanted to know why you posted if it was not contributory or having some relevance to the subject. Is there something against asking valid questions? Are you the post police?