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Jürgen Hubert
Seeker

Germany
31 Posts

Posted - 16 Jan 2018 :  18:38:27  Show Profile  Visit Jürgen Hubert's Homepage Send Jürgen Hubert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I left my version of Lopango largely underpopulated. The reason for this is that at some point in the past, jungle giants spread throughout the region - and they have a taste for human flesh. I was going for an "Attack on Titan" vibe, except that the giants are smarter and much, much stealthier.

However, the region was also changed recently by the discovery of possibly the largest known silver deposits in the entire world, deep in the mountains of Lopango (this was inspired by the real world Potosi in the 17th and 18th century, which is a fascinating place in its own right) - which brought outsiders to the region who have to secure two long trails from the mines to the coast, and who extract the silver under deeply horrible conditions.

More about this version can be found here:

http://www.thepiazza.org.uk/bb/viewtopic.php?f=39&t=18864

A German Geek - my gaming blog
Returned Maztica Discussion Thread - my interpretation of the True World
Doomed Slayers - my social analysis of adventurers. Also, a fantasy setting!

Edited by - Jürgen Hubert on 16 Jan 2018 18:56:09
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sleyvas
Great Reader

USA
7126 Posts

Posted - 16 Jan 2018 :  18:50:46  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Markustay

Wow, you guys are picturing things a lot more 'busy' than I ever did.

I just wanted a peaceful jungle region with ancient giant ruins... and some savage drow. Drow like those Native in 2005's King Kong. Maybe a couple of yuan-ti in a swamp...

I don't want Orcs anywhere near Katashaka - I want things to be different. Else, why even bother going there? I almost wish Chult and the shining South didn't already have dinosaurs - its very hard to make Katshaka stand-out when we already have Chult. The closest thing to an orc I'd want is a losel (an orc/ape hybrid).

Which reminds me - a LONG time ago I named that other large island to the far south 'The Land of Flying Monkeys", and although that was only supposed to be a joke, people loved it. Problem is, I've come to realize that island has to be VERY cold. In fact, if you look at some of the planetary maps that came with the FRIA, it actually connects via ice - to the southern antarctic continent (which is called the 'Everice' on the Xendrik map, which I may keep for FR as well, but NOT that part that sticks up under Katashaka - that has its OWN name. You'll see).

So no apes there, except for maybe some yetis. Wait... maybe those things from the UE books - the Taer. And maybe some Tran, which are feline (maybe some of the catfolk of Tabaxiland came to this islands 20K+ years ago?)



Yeah, the ape area I'm talking about has girallons, giant apes, flying monkeys, flying apes, and a different creature from Unapproachable East... the Uthraki (but a brown furred version) who have some shapechanging abilities. They would be led by some green skinned hags with class abilities. The hags will also have some ogre-magi who they keep as lovers from a nearby culture of Kara-Turans whose spelljammers (which looked like a Wa tsunami <giant caterpillar> and a few shou dragonships that were locked in combat seconds before the spellplague) was attacked by a nyamma-numo. The Kara-Turans didn't realize their crew had been infiltrated, and while they've survived in the jungle for the past century, they are woefully small in number. They'll be living in the Jungles of the Jade Sovereignty, their main village will be the Emerald City which they've connected to their other villages via a golden paved road. Their main allies are a small mushroom like creature that sings named "campestri" (the campestri have an unusual talent for filtering soil to make excellent fertilizer and extracting salt, so they have served to make the sometimes swampy areas of the jungle habitable for the Kara-Turans to grow rice).

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas
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sleyvas
Great Reader

USA
7126 Posts

Posted - 16 Jan 2018 :  19:34:00  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Seethyr

Sleyvas, I am really interested in your whole Red Wizard tie in. How did this get started? Is there a canonical connection with Thay and Katashaka, Anchorome or Maztica or is this all homebrew? I could see them really being interested in exploiting all of the True Worlds resources, well, because, that’s what they do. I’m going to try to collect all you’ve written in this thread and others about the Tharches (tharchs?) and try to get a better understanding of where you are headed.

Markustay, the orcs in Lopango are very, very different from normal orcs. I’ve tried to take the common races from Faerun and flip them (with good explanations/connections for doing so) and truly these orcs will be unrecognizable.

Since Lopango has come back up I have been thinking of doing a write up recently about a dragon in the old “Wyrms of the North” format. One night about a week ago, I just started writing about this guy and want to see what you all think. It’s just a start.

Acalanahuatzi

When they say a man is “at war with himself” typically it concerns understanding one’s own self worth and concern over actions that might not be in their best interest.

Yet when we speak of a dragon, and a two headed ancient tlalocoatl at that - being at war with yourself might literally mean being at war.

Such is the case with Acalanahuatzi. Once a powerful messenger of Azul and a favored being in the deity’s hierarchy - Acalanahuatzi now spends its long years plotting a way to destroy its other half without destroying itself.

See, tlalocouatls, also known as “rain dragons,” are dragons who have two distinct personalities living in a single body. As servants of a divine being, these two separate souls typically act in perfect harmony. Not only does their philosophy typically fall in line, but their every thought and action sync like a perfectly orchestrated musical masterpiece. If one were to observe a tlalocoatl in combat and somehow survive, they would swear that only a single mind guided a rain dragon’s every movement.

So what exactly went wrong with Acalanahuatzi is mostly unknown, but over it’s centuries of life, the powerful rain dragon has fought and destroyed many creatures of chaos. Perhaps at some point, the cumulative effect of so much exposure to madness caused the once regimented rain dragon to fracture. Over time, the two personalities grew distant from each other, and neither were truly a servant of the god of the rains any longer

Acalan and Ahuatzi

Acalan is the jaguar-like head of the tlalocoatl whose personality, on the surface at least, seems the most in tune with its old self. Acalan would have others believe that it still seeks to bring the rains and perform its duties in the True World as it always has. When it encounters humans and can somehow prevent its other half from slaying such fragile beings, this is the plea it makes for assistance in finding powerful magic that could separate him from his serpentine sibling.
If a lesser creature indicates that it is unable or unwilling to do so, they will unfortunately meet its true personality. A savage predator that delights in tearing meat from the bone. This is the one occasion that both halves will once again work in tandem. Only the common goal of survival, a desire to be free from each other, and the sheer enjoyment in tearing mortals apart is shared anymore between Acalan and Ahuatzi.
Acalan also takes pleasure in drowning mortals who have done nothing more to offend him than being born. The floods that he has brought to Lopango have drawn the attention of the goddess Koni- who seeks to make Acalan (and Acalan alone) her own herald, if ever the two were to split.

Ahuatzi is unlike any tlalocoatl that has ever existed (or half of a tlalocoatl for that matter) in that it has turned from its love of the element of water and instead embraced death. Ahuatzi, once sleek and sibilant, is now a dried withering husk that still lives on with the power of unlife giving it strength. Yes, Ahauatzi, and only Ahuatzi, has become a dreaded dracolich.

A sample tlalocoatl linked below...

http://rs1191.pbsrc.com/albums/z467/Seethyr/tlalocaoutl.png?w=480&h=480&fit=clip



Before I start in on my stuff, first let me say... love the dragon. My first thoughts were "was it a helm of opposite alignment".... but then I'm wondering "was it someone modifying the creature's mind magically/psionically?". Is this someone's subtle way of killing the dragon without having to kill it.

My United Tharchs of Toril is non-canon. I originally started discussing a concept that red wizards needed to give up on Thay and instead build a new civilization elsewhere. At first I pictured them down in the shaar, but having a whole culture "suddenly" down there on the edges of the underchasm made not a lick of sense, because it would have been documented. So, then we heard about 5e, and I knew Maztica was coming back. So, I theorized, how could I have a red wizard culture be somewhat powerful there, but not necessarily a massive empire.

That's when I came up with the idea that they were spread out like England with small Tharchs. They would trade between their own tharchs, interact with local cultures, but not dominate them entirely. It would all start off as trade enclaves that "grow" as a result of being isolated by the spellplague.

One of the big things to that would also be that the gods were in Abeir, and one of the things is that the gods appear to the people there. For instance, all the Torilian spellcasters (no matter the type) went to sleep one night just following the spellplague, and they all had a collective dream. In this dream, they could see all these spellcasters from all kinds of other ethnicities working together to make a powerful magic revolving around light magic. The next day, each culture would see THEIR sun god interacting with the sun as their own culture pictured it (i.e. some gods pull the sun across the sky, etc...). What was unusual about it was the two people standing side by side would see different things, meanwhile Abeirans would see nothing unusual. There was a similar instance regarding the moon prior to the sun dream. After this, all spellcasters who transferred to Abeir found themselves blessed with virility for the next generation. The red wizards, many of whom in the new world had multiple wives, thus produced many new young spellcasters.

My Tharchs are multiple in number, but some are very weak in comparison to others. For instance, the tharch up near Michaca/City of Godl (i.e. the Tharch of Esh Alakar) consists of Esh Alakar and the City on the Great Glass Lake, with a pair of Azuposi tribes that swear allegiance and offer tribute just to be pretty much left alone. The tharch of Oslander Islands is pretty much a couple small forts that interact with local natives, teaching them agricultural skills and helping them with magical weather in return for crops. The Tharch of Luneira is just a small Netherese enclave in orbit with the ability to turn invisible and has maybe the population of a medium to small city.

Then I have bigger tharchs with multiple villages/cities (Balduran Bay, Lopango, Western Pridelands of Katashaka, New Eltabbar in Katashaka, Peleveran in the Shaar, and the recently formed Wizard's Reach tharch). I've also put in the idea that up near Mulmaster is a group of red wizards in enclaves who are intrigued with this new notion of "spread out tharchs" put forth by a red wizard culture that "popped up out of nowhere" as a result of the spellplague.

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas
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Markustay
Realms Explorer extraordinaire

USA
15675 Posts

Posted - 16 Jan 2018 :  19:35:03  Show Profile Send Markustay a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Yeah, I'm thinking the 'ape region' should be on Katashaka itself. That other island should just have all srts of cold-type races (excpet frost goants, who still have a heavy presence in the glaciers to the south of Katashaka). In fact, I am still going through the Xendrik book and came across a 'gorilla city' type of entry, excpet those are real apes (mostly), and onlt one - the leader - has become 'awakened' (and even then, it only has an Int of 4). I'd want something halfway between that (the other parts of that lore we can keep) and what Paizo did in Mwangi {how fun is THAT to say?} with the 'Gorilla King' (*cough* Grodd *cough). Maybe give him an Int of at least 10. I am so tempted to just rip all the Mwangi stuff off, but then I'm back to doing my Misbegotten Realms, and I am trying to avoid that (I did steal one small region from 'elsewhere', but technically, it was actually designed to be inserted into any campaign world, so I am okay with that). I even found a 'Fairy Queen' in the Xendrik stuff (although they didn't really reflavor her at all). I may put more into this conversion than I had originally intended.

Anyhow, I came across a group called the Shulassaskar, who are very primitive, feathered Yuan-ti. I thought that was pretty interesting. Oh, and they're LAWFUL GOOD - hows that for a kick in the head? They hate the 'loss of innocent life'. Lots of great stuff in this Xendrik book - its almost more of a springboard of ideas than a cohesive whole, though. Just a dumping ground for anything even remotely jungle-related. Thats not such a bad thing, considering how I/we can use that stuff (its not really 'firmly cemented' into Eberron lore - its very 'loose').

And once again, sorry about the minor derailment here, but once I get the map up (trying for today), you'll see why we kind of need to keep the two regions connected (even more-so than Maztica and Anchoromé).

"I have never in my life learned anything from any man who agreed with me" --- Dudley Field Malone

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Markustay
Realms Explorer extraordinaire

USA
15675 Posts

Posted - 16 Jan 2018 :  19:56:11  Show Profile Send Markustay a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Oh, and I also love the 'dragon' (more of a serpent, really). I hadn't pictured him quite that way - thats disturbing and cool in a Catdog kind of way.

As for leaving the lands 'sparse' - I was really talking about Katashaka, but even with Lopango (whch honestly, I never thought about much before), I just figured very small, remote tribes, very much like parts of the Amazon today.

@Jürgen - I really LOVE the 'Attack on Titans' vibe for Lopango. Maybe - since others are doing very different things there - I can reuse that somewhere in katashaka (its pretty HUGE, and the idea of 'bestial giants' isn't really all that far off from the Xendrik lore I am trying to repsin there).

In the Xendrik lore (which, as I pointed out above, isn't so much a 'conversion' in the usual sense - I am spinning it that most of the stuff actually sits in a Jungle Demiplane), they have something called The Du'rashka Tul - the "Madness of Crowds". Its basically an ancient curse (not unlike the Kingkiller thing, now that I think about it) that affected the giants, and made them go into 'mindless rages' on each other and everything else, and it still effects just about everyone in Xen'Drik. Anytime a population center gets too large, or too 'sophisticated', the curse comes down and the people have this madness that has them tear apart their own settlements and run screaming into the jungles (to do the same to others, of they encounter any).

I like it, and its a great McGuffin for keeping things savage/primitive (so, ya know, no tharches or countries or anything of the like). Strangely, Stormreach (which I renamed Stormrath on the Katashaka map) is unaffected... so far. Not sure how I would want to respin it - the curse could be mass-based, thus affecting giants more . So, lets say, you add-up the weight of everyone in a population center (or small area) and for every 4 tons (2000 lbs x 5 = 10K lbs., or about 4536 Kilos) over 100 tons (200,000 lbs, or 90,718 Kilos) of 'intelligent flesh', there is a 1% chance per day of the curse kicking-in. Something like that. That means giants are MUCH more susceptible, and the larger, more sophisticated giants, even more-so. That works for me - keeps the flavor and wraps some consistent rules around it. Sometting in the water, I guess.

"I have never in my life learned anything from any man who agreed with me" --- Dudley Field Malone

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Markustay
Realms Explorer extraordinaire

USA
15675 Posts

Posted - 16 Jan 2018 :  20:07:56  Show Profile Send Markustay a Private Message  Reply with Quote
And while its tempting to connect the Creatori to the region, I'd prefer for it to remain more of a 'giants vs dragons' of olde, kind of thing (for the ancient history) in Katashaka. There is one major Batrachi ruin in the sea of Lopango (as per my CKC article), and there could be some Sarrukh and others (I'd prefer to have Lacerials in the region rather than Sarrukh), but I think it would be neat (read: DIFFERENT) if we used the under-utilized Aearee instead (for Katashaka, not Maztica - I am leaving that alone - you guys already have enough 'chefs' for that dish). In fact, the Xendrik stuff has some Aarakocra ruins so its a good fit. A lot of the mountains (and there are plenty, and they are HUGE) could possibly have ruins of 'nest-cities' that had the same thing happen as in Netheril (all falling form the sky, pretty-much destroying the civilization all at once... likely during the first Sundering).

I am SO tempted to put a city of 'Hawkmen' here - I want so badly to have a 'planet Mongo' region, but I'll save them for the northern continent, or maybe even Osse (maybe). The Raptorans from RotW would probably be a much better fit for the region.

Hmmmmm... flying Firbolg...

EDIT:
Apologies for posting all this here - once I come out with the Katashaka map, I will start a new thread for that lore.

"I have never in my life learned anything from any man who agreed with me" --- Dudley Field Malone


Edited by - Markustay on 16 Jan 2018 20:09:34
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Markustay
Realms Explorer extraordinaire

USA
15675 Posts

Posted - 16 Jan 2018 :  22:39:48  Show Profile Send Markustay a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Geeze, all of that, and I forgot the main reason I came to this thread earlier today...

In the Xendrik/Eberron material, they have Yakfolk. I hadn't even considered that possibility for Katashaka. Since I've connected the Yakfolk (in my homebrew material) to ancient Raksasha experimentation, and also blame the whole Tabaxi thing (the tribe of humans vs the tribe of 'catfolk') on them as well, it might be interesting for me to spin this for FR somehow.

The Raksasha did enjoy creating many type of 'beastman' from other races. I just don't want to over-use them, and I already have them having a major impact on other areas (of course, if I never GET to those areas, it really doesn't matter, does it?) On the other hand, if I were to use them anywhere at at all in this region, I'd put them in Tabaxiland, maybe as some form of 'shadow government'.

"I have never in my life learned anything from any man who agreed with me" --- Dudley Field Malone


Edited by - Markustay on 16 Jan 2018 22:40:19
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sleyvas
Great Reader

USA
7126 Posts

Posted - 17 Jan 2018 :  02:14:01  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
BTW, as are as order the tharchs were established in:

Balduran Bay trade enclave (up by Fort Flame) later becomes the Tharch of Balduran Bay

explorers from Balduran Bay move to establish
Esh Alakar trade enclave (up by Michaca/City of Gold) later becomes the Tharch of Esh Alakar

explorers from Esh Alakar move to learn the secrets in Lopango, Land of Fire and establish
Lopango trade enclave, later becomes Tharch of the Jungles of Lopango

SPELLPLAGUE

refugees throughout transferred portions of Chessenta and Chondath lose many of their cities, but establish themselves in Cimbar, Soorenar and Laothkund (they leave Akanax, Hlath, Mordulkin, Airspur, and Reth, as well as many smaller villages to head to this bastion of safety). These cities (specifically Soorenar) are also the first to see magic return (long story).

Mythrell'aa reveals that not only is she not dead, she's been waiting for the other Zulkirs to kill Tam while she's been setting up a backup place to call home in a captured Netherese Enclave (formerly known as Doubloon) that it took her decades to track down because.... its invisible in orbit. Also, with things changed, she and her people need food up on that enclave and it doesn't grow well in space where there's no natural weather cycles.

A few years after the spellplague, a sizable portion of the population in Cimbar and Soorenar heads down because they've been led to believe that they should try and establish themselves in the Cliffside city of Peleverai down in the transferred eastern Shaar.

Mythrell'aa heads down to the Oslander Isles in a Quad of Thay (think rocket looking spelljammer coming down to their island from the sky), and basically gets their humans to venerate her and the red wizards by bringing them tools and knowledge to make their lives easier.

Three transferred Thayan enclaves in the Chultan peninsula collapse (Samargol in Samarach, Lundeth in Thindol, and Tashluta in Tashalar) to Abeiran forces, but their portals allow the people of these cities to escape to Balduran Bay Trade Enclave. Some stay there, some move on to Esh Alakar.

During this time of upheaval, the idea that all these remote trade enclaves should form a united government comes up. Thus, the United Tharchs of Toril is born.

A generation later, social issues divide the people of the Tharch of the Jungles of Lopango, and a faction of them head south to form a new colony on the northwestern coast of Katashaka. They find a continent that hasn't seen human contact for centuries, but there are numerous beast humanoid cultures on a rolling savannah grassland filled with numerous herd animals. They are able to setup numerous small villages and become highly successful at agriculture and animal husbandry, as well as learning to turn the various different cultures in the area either into slaves or working for them. Over the next 4 decades or so, they continue to expand, building new villages along the coast and occupying nearby islands. This becomes the Tharch of the Western Pridelands.

After about 6 decades the Tharch of the Western Pridelands and the Tharch of Lopango work together with some exiled leonine catfolk to kick out some other leonine catfolk (Lenastans). This becomes the small, decadent tharch of New Eltabbar.

Second Sundering Occurs

Laothkund pops back into place, and the nearby wizard's reach cities are occupied by rebel red wizards (particularly Escalant). They decide to form a new Tharch, the Tharch of the Wizard's Reach (including Laothkund, Cimbar, and Soorenar... but also Escalant and other nearby cities that STAYED on Toril). There may be some definitely differing moral viewpoints here, and this Tharch may end up dividing itself with internal political issues.

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas
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Seethyr
Senior Scribe

USA
483 Posts

Posted - 17 Jan 2018 :  02:23:44  Show Profile  Visit Seethyr's Homepage Send Seethyr a Private Message  Reply with Quote
When I posted this way back in July 2014, this is exactly what I was hoping would happen. An exchange of great ideas that sometimes coincide, sometimes contradict, but that each user’s version of Maztica could get something valuable from. This is awesome, thanks guys!

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sleyvas
Great Reader

USA
7126 Posts

Posted - 17 Jan 2018 :  02:30:57  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Markustay

And while its tempting to connect the Creatori to the region, I'd prefer for it to remain more of a 'giants vs dragons' of olde, kind of thing (for the ancient history) in Katashaka. There is one major Batrachi ruin in the sea of Lopango (as per my CKC article), and there could be some Sarrukh and others (I'd prefer to have Lacerials in the region rather than Sarrukh), but I think it would be neat (read: DIFFERENT) if we used the under-utilized Aearee instead (for Katashaka, not Maztica - I am leaving that alone - you guys already have enough 'chefs' for that dish). In fact, the Xendrik stuff has some Aarakocra ruins so its a good fit. A lot of the mountains (and there are plenty, and they are HUGE) could possibly have ruins of 'nest-cities' that had the same thing happen as in Netheril (all falling form the sky, pretty-much destroying the civilization all at once... likely during the first Sundering).

I am SO tempted to put a city of 'Hawkmen' here - I want so badly to have a 'planet Mongo' region, but I'll save them for the northern continent, or maybe even Osse (maybe). The Raptorans from RotW would probably be a much better fit for the region.

Hmmmmm... flying Firbolg...

EDIT:
Apologies for posting all this here - once I come out with the Katashaka map, I will start a new thread for that lore.



I'm using a lot of bird folk... but not aarakocra.... down in Katashaka. I'm having Ibideans (stork folk), bird folk resembling toucans and parrots, vulture folk, and to the southeast there is the Pelica Island, Land of the Waterfowl Kenku (picturing ducks, pelicans, gull races... and thanks to Seethyr, a little further south... penguins). I won't detail Pelica Island though, just reference it as a rumored place.

I'm also having some different variations of griffins, ones without hawk heads and different kinds of cat bodies. So, kind of picture a more parrot-like griffin with say red and black feathers and a panther like body.... and they love coconuts.


Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas
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sleyvas
Great Reader

USA
7126 Posts

Posted - 17 Jan 2018 :  02:33:34  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Seethyr

When I posted this way back in July 2014, this is exactly what I was hoping would happen. An exchange of great ideas that sometimes coincide, sometimes contradict, but that each user’s version of Maztica could get something valuable from. This is awesome, thanks guys!



Yeah, when I saw your stuff on Maztica, I was like "I like his stuff, I want to work around it but keep it true". The one part that continually contradicted me was the part where you had no gods. Also, both you and I both contradict the established lore that there were no wizards while on Abeir, but I've written up some stuff to explain that away (because the people on Toril don't KNOW what was happening on abeir).

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas
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sleyvas
Great Reader

USA
7126 Posts

Posted - 17 Jan 2018 :  02:39:42  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
You know what... what the hell, I'll post up some of the stuff I've written up regarding Katashaka here instead of "hinting". Granted... I've got two files. The one which has my "overview" of the region, then the one that's "scattered notes" that I plan to use to make a regional source for each Tharch (if I can ever get to it). So, in short my overview just details that which is very near and concerning to the Tharch, without getting into city or personnel details. That being said, I present my base concept for the Tharch of the Western Pridelands.

Tharch of the Western Pridelands

A generation after being transferred into Abeir, the red wizards of the Lopango Enclaves decided to head out for a deeper study of the nearby continent of Katashaka to their south. Expanding from the cities of New Kensten and Mictallara, these red wizards setup the colony of Nethinjori on the Northernmost coast of Katashaka, in an area of rich savannah grasslands. They enslaved the Nezumi, or rat folk as the red wizards refer to them, that previously held this stretch of land, using them as overseers. From this central point, they would expand down the coast of the Katashaka for the next eighty years, forming small coastal colonies with a rich agrarian culture that's proven to the benefit of the surrounding societies that have decided to work with, rather than stand against them. Also, given the vast plains surrounding these colonies, herding of antelopes, gazelles, zebras, wildebeests, kudu, cape buffalo, warthogs, imported pigs, sheep, goats, surface rothe, horses, and perhaps one of the strangest, giant rats has become commonplace. Nearly all of these animals are also bred for their milks as well, and the production of cheeses and flavored butters from these milks is a staple throughout the tharchs. In addition, varieties of geese, ducks, peafowl,chickens, and kiwi are often kept for their eggs, feathers, and meat. Some communities also raise axebeaks and ostriches for their meat and feathers, and many communities use axebeaks as mounts for their militia. This coastal population has also embraced the sea much as the Lopangans have, each village having dozens of small, fast, and mobile catamarans used for securing the sea's bounty. Like the Lopangans, they have also embraced windmills, though between this and their ship making it has stretched their need for good wood. As a result, most houses are built of sun-dried bricks.

Perhaps the most noticeable difference between this Tharch and the previous Tharchs is the noticeable prevalence of humanoid beings that resemble various animals rather than variations of humans. The Western Pridelands are inhabited by a feral culture of bestial humanoids which cannibalize one another in order to survive. A tavern in red wizard held lands will be filled with several varieties of cat folk, rodent folk resembling rats, mice, and weasels, hyena-like gnolls, fox-like Rupellians, minotaurs, rhinoceros like Noceri and Rhinaurs, tauric warthogs known as Swinotaurs, Stork-like Ibideans, even the occasional savage bullywug or Khumat.

The most commonly found intelligent race are the small muislings, a short lived rodent race mostly surviving as hunter gatherers when found outside of red wizard colonies. They are regularly fed upon by the other tribes, which consider them a succulent morsel. These muislings proved to be easily captured slaves, and more than that, they proved to be readily adaptable to working the land in exchange for the benefits of the protection offered to them by the red wizards. In a short time, the red wizards had developed an agrarian society that proved to the benefit of both cultures. Almost immediately, they came into conflict with the savage wemics tribes, known as the Simbaara, the thieving Cheetaakans, a race of yellow catfolk covered in black spots similar to Tabaxi but lankier, and the barbaric gnoll tribes of the region.

However, not all of the cat folk in the region have become enemies of the red wizards. In fact, further to the south, inhabiting portions of the western pridelands and the jungles, are the cat folk of the Wakanari Highlands. This culture is composed primarily of humanoid cat folk, of nearly every type and color, all of which usually possess the normal spotting or striping of the great cats. Primarily though, their coloration follows the leopard spotted, tiger-striped, or black furred patterns of the panthers of the jungle. Numerous tressym also inhabit their society, as do winged great cats, many of which have been magically awakened (treat as normal tigers, jaguars, sabre-toothed tigers, panthers, and lions with a flying movement of 30). In addition, this region is filled with Hakuna (which Faerunians sometimes refer to as Dragonnes, or Lion/dragon hybrids) and griffins, and the nobility are known for taming these beasts for use as mounts. The spirit shamans of this society are humanoid cat folk which have undergone a ritual to give them wings, said ritual involving the Adro and Gyno Sphinx rulers to which they must give their undying fealty in return.

As a result of this positive relationship with the catfolk of the Wakanari Highlands, many Tigran and Tabaxi cat folk have left their former society and taken up temporary roles as mercenaries, hunters, or more commonly, whalers and fisherfolk. Given the number of merrow, kuo-toa, and sahuagin which infest the coast of Katashaka, this relationship has allowed the land based races to conduct magically aided raids upon these creatures. For the cat folk, this is particularly fruitful, as they find the taste of these sea folk to be especially good. As a result, most seagoing vessels consist of primarily cat folk and nezumi, or rat folk, under the command of a Mulan captain and his lieutenants and a sea mage and/or priest.

The Mulan people of the western pridelands also raise some rather non-traditional farm animals. For instance, giant rats are a commonly raised form of cattle, which are traded to the cat folk in return for live zebras, giant snakes, gazelles, axe beaks, ostriches, and smaller fowl. It is also not uncommon for large numbers of mouseling slaves to be traded to the cat folk, though this is always done carefully so that the muislings do not suspect the actions of their masters. For instance, they may split a large group of mouseling slaves and march them out to a new village where they will work for the next two years, and trade off those that stay behind.

However, not all races that dwell in the pridelands are meat eaters. The Noceri, called Rhinotaurs by the red wizards, are a race of large powerful humanoids which had traditionally subjugated the other races of the pridelands, forcing them to gather food for them. The agrarian society of the red wizards has proven beneficial to them in particular, and as a result Noceri soldiers have become a commonplace sight as bodyguards for red wizards.

The Ibideans, or Stork Folk as they are known by the red wizards, inhabit the swamps and coastline of the western pridelands, and they have proven capable allies and trade partners. The red wizards have further earned their trust by helping them clear out their hated enemies, the bullywugs and crocodile-like humanoids known as Khumat. As a result, many a red wizard shipping vessel in the Western Pridelands has at least one Ibidean sailor amongst its crew, usually in the crow's nest where their long range vision is most effective.

The red wizards naval aggression also led them to the Tazmitahl islands off their western shores, wherein they uncovered islands literally covered with a small, somewhat goblin-like indigenous race known as Tasloi. These primitives quickly fell before the red wizards, and the Tasloi immediately swore servitude to their oppressors in return for their life. The red wizards then setup several small villages on each island with several red wizards with a mix of nezumi, gnoll, tabaxi, ibidean, or noceri guards. The rulers of this tharch have also instituted a requirement that the remaining Tasloi setup a lottery amongst themselves to provide individuals to serve as soldiers for the red wizards on a periodic basis. Those that are taken are clothed and fed well (for a tasloi), as well as being allowed to breed repeatedly with multiple tasloi females. They are then given basic military training and taught that they are better than the tasloi who will have to remain behind and raise the children that will soon be born. Those that survive are returned to the islands as “rich” veterans who are taught that they now outrank their fellow Tasloi, but on a different island. As a result, many Tasloi actually hope to win the lottery so that they may see the surrounding world. Very few manage to survive though, as tasloi cavalry mounted on hyenas or giant wasps are often used as shock troops.

Still, the western pridelands are filled with numerous other threats. The swinotaurs, or warthog men as the red wizards call them, are vicious, bristly furred, tusked tauric tribes known for their extreme persistence. The Rhinaurs, giant centaur like rhino men with vaguely humanlike torsos, are large and powerful, roaming the plains in small groups and aggressively hunting and eating the other predators to prove their own might. The rupellians, a generally grey to red furred fox-like humanoid, tend to be less aggressive, but also less trustworthy. Then there are the strange and magical beasts which serve variously as predator and prey, hunting red wizards and Katashakan natives alike.

The red wizards of the western pridelands have made a fairly successful impact upon the lands in which they dwell, but still they seek to delve deeper within the mysteries of the jungles that are Katashaka's Western interior. Therein it is said dwell various lizard folk, troglodytes, crocodilians, serpent men, froglike grippli and grungs, alongside tribes of alien plant beings such as myconids, vegepygmies, campestri, blights, and even jungle versions of dryads and treants. Further in, there are even rumored to be strange batlike humanoids, bird folk resembling toucans and parrots, and even a land of elephant-like Loxo and hippo-like Giff. Throughout the jungles, there roam powerful reptilian creatures, including dinosaurs, and giant monstrosities known as the Nyamma-Numo, which are rumored to be worshipped by some of the natives as godlike beings on earth.

Of course, the red wizards must be careful in how much effort they expend toward expansion. Already, they have numerous settlements spread far along the coastline, with waters filled with bloodthirsty sea creatures separating them. Their roads are little more than cleared mud trails “paved” with the crushed bones of dead slaves and broken pottery since they have little in the way of good solid rock. Many of these fledgling settlements lost nearly half their population nearly two generations back as many were drawn to the vision of the newly formed Tharch of New Eltabbar in Eastern Katashaka. This left them unprepared to control their territory and forced them to make more alliances with the surrounding races. Their settlements must be defended, as the bestial tribes of the pridelands are apt to invade whenever the opportunity presents itself. Some tribes consider it a rite of passage to invade a human village and make off with a human which they turn into a slave, and some of these tribes have even developed a taste for human flesh.

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas
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sleyvas
Great Reader

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Posted - 17 Jan 2018 :  02:49:13  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
And here's the start of my documenting of the Tharch of the Western Pridelands in more detail (before I got sidetracked by Peleveran and the Wizard's Reach which are of more immediate interest). Oh, on the laws section, I was just throwing out ideas, and I may have different sets of laws in different tharchs. The main ones I was thinking of regarding this tharch and New Eltabbar were about maintaining racial purity.

Tharch: Western Pridelands of Katashaka
Capital: Nethinjori
Population: roughly 400,000 racial breakdown human 30% ( 60 % Mulan, 15 % Azuposi, 25 % Metahel), 30% muislings (entirely slaves), 10% tasloi (entirely slaves or slave-soldiers), 6% gnolls, 6% Tigran/Tabaxi cat folk, 5% nezumi, 3% Noceri, 2% centaurs, 1% Ibideans, 7% mix of other races native to the region (wemics, swinotaurs, rhinaurs, rupellians, bullywugs, crocodilians, etc...)

Regional History
This Tharch was created when “The Conquering Tharchion”, Targuth Agneh, decided once again that he needed to conquer new lands. He felt that the Mulan people of the Tharch of Lopango had betrayed their sense of racial purity by breeding with local and transplanted populations of Azuposi, Maztican, Natican, and Kolan females, not to mention the growing trend of Mulan males who had produced half-drow offspring. This was while the Tharch of Lopango was still somewhat in its infancy, having been around for merely a few decades.

Targuth Agneh himself possessed a harem of over thirty wives, all of them Mulan, and it is said that prior to his capturing of the Western Pridelands of Katashaka that he had already fathered more than 500 children. Thus, it was that he, along with his ambitious sons Mikkellen, Khumadh, and Kanlagar, led an army of orc slaves, gnolls, centaurs, and Metahel humans to the “land of the rat folk”, as the northwestern peninsula of Katashaka was called. The rat folk, or nezumi as they called themselves, were easily conquered and quickly turned into guides, for they would rather serve a new master than die needlessly.

Khumadh led his orc forces south, dragging with them enough materials to establish a small fort of simple mud ramparts and wood. Eventually this fort would become a castle protecting their new capital of Nethinjori, and it would be known as castle Khumadh. Within a few years, Kanlagar and Mikkelen each led a small group of their people southward along the coast to settle, establishing walled cities in their own names.

The orc slaves which they had pulled from the Lopango jungle were soon slaughtered, either through overwork or being used as fodder in seizing surrounding lands. However, the red wizards had discovered a new race which was subjugated by nearly every other race of the Western Pridelands. Resembling small mouse-like humanoids, this simple, short-lived race proved to be the perfect race for slavery in this new environment. Offering them simple protection from the other humanoids of Katashaka, the red wizards harnessed these creatures energy to work their fields and build their cities.

The red wizards also managed to enslave a race of goblinoid like creatures known as Tasloi on the nearby Tazmitahl Islands, though these beings are exceptionally stupid and most red wizards only gather up forces from these islands whenever they intend a military conflict and they need fodder. However, these islands are rich in wood, and thus the red wizards have setup several small settlements protected by hired humanoids to harvest this lumber for their Tharch's use.

Over the next twenty years, many of the other sons of Targuth were tasked by their father with securing their own settlements in the surrounding territories as they came of age. Thus, the settlement of Gexor was founded, as well as several smaller landholdings. Even one of his daughters, Nimyos, managed to secure a small holding of her own. The red wizards have taken to hiring humanoid mercenaries, in the form mostly of gnolls, tabaxi, nezumi, and noceri, to protect their communities. Their natural agricultural skill has brought a level of prosperity to the Western Pridelands that was unheard of prior to their arrival, and thus, for the most part they have been allowed to expand with little conflict as long as they are willing to trade with nearby tribes. The western pridelands are now in their fourth generation of occupation of the Western Pridelands, and they have become masters of its lands and seas.

Government and Politics

Tharchion: Targuth Agneh (Ftr 10 (eldritch knight) / Wizard (school of evocation) 10) – Raumathari Battlemage Feat (see Red Book of Spell Strategy)


Council of Arcanists

School of Abjuration (Zulkir) Zayorn Seklav, Aulkir of Abjuration for the Western Pridelands. Zayorn lives in the city of Gexor in the Western Pridelands.

School of Conjuration (Aulkir) – open for NPC development

School of Divination (Aulkir) – open for NPC development

School of Enchantment (Aulkir) – open for NPC development

School of Evocation (Aulkir) Targuth Agneh, Thulkir of the Fellowship of Battlemages, Aulkir of Evocation for the Western Pridelands, and Tharchion of the Western Pridelands. See above Tharchion entry.

School of Illusion (Aulkir) – open for NPC development

School of Necromancy (Aulkir) – open for NPC development

School of Transmutation (Aulkir) – open for NPC development

Academy of Arcane Craftsmanship (Khazir) – open for NPC development

Sorcerer's Society (Khazir) – open for NPC development

Fellowship of Battlemages (Thulkir) - Targuth Agneh, Thulkir of the Fellowship of Battlemages, Aulkir of Evocation for the Western Pridelands, and Tharchion of the Western Pridelands. See above Tharchion entry.

Guild of Arcane Spymasters (Khazir) – open for NPC development

Major Settlements

Nethinjori (approx population: 43,000 )
Notable Individuals/Residents:
Targuth Agneh, Tharchion of the Western Pridelands and Thulkir of the Fellowship of Battlemages.
Xxxx (Autharch managing the city),
Description

Gexor (approx population: 40,000 )
Notable Individuals/Residents: xxxx (Autharch managing the city),
Description: Rival in size to Nethinjori, this highly defensible city is surrounded by vast swathes of farmland.

Kanlagar (approx population: 32,000 )
Notable Individuals/Residents: xxxx (Autharch managing the city),
Description

Mikkelen (approx population: 26,000 )
Notable Individuals/Residents: xxxx (Autharch managing the city),
Description

Castle Khumadh (approx population: 23,000 )
Notable Individuals/Residents: xxxx (Autharch managing the city),
Description

Minor Settlements


Admala (approx population: 5,000) –

Alyul (approx population: 4,000) – a small fishing and farming community on the outskirts of Mikkelen

Anabrax Islands (approx population: 23,000 over 3 small island communities) – This small island community was discovered by Metahel, a human subrace resembling stories of the Northmen of old, while exploring ever westward. They found the islands to be abundant in trees and local animal life. This has since become a community dominated by Metahel whalers, fishermen, and farmers. They have cleared much of the island of its timber building houses and ships. This community is now seeing its second generation growing to adulthood on the island. While their community is primarily human, there is about a 10% population of Ibideans, or stork folk, who were natives of the islands when the Metahel landed. Despite being a holding of the Tharch of the Western Pridelands, very few Mulan live out on this island, and Tharchion Targuth Agneh is known for simply rotating lesser wizard apprentices to serve the populace here. This seems to satisfy both communities.

The Metahel of the Western Pridelands have almost entirely migrated to these islands, forming logging and farming communities. They have three relatively large clan holdings (Heimdir Landing, Nydhall, and Dostun Village), but no community holds more than 3 thousand individuals.

Dusanim (approx population: 5,000) – Arcanists school

Dzahor (approx population: 2,400) – A small, walled fishing and farming community on Lake Baara. Similar to Jhaalath to the south, this city is often the last stopping point for older muisling slaves. The Simbaara tribes of wemics populate much of the nearby scrublands, and it is not uncommon for them to trade for living muislings to use as hunting fodder for their younglings. Very few muislings ever survive these hunting parties, and those that do often find themselves stumbling into the swamps further to the south where they are captured and eaten by carnivorous bullywugs and lizard folk. This city is also noted for its “birdboys”, as the wranglers who catch many wild axebeak and train them as mounts are known.

Jhaalath (approx population: 3,600) – a small fishing and farming community established in the last twenty years. Its population is small, but almost universally ex-soldiers or adventurers. Nearly half this community is almost always non-human members as well, consisting of cat folk from the Wakanari Highlands come to trade. This city often gets older muisling slaves, whom they then trade to the cat folk in return for goods and/or services. This is a well kept secret from the muislings due to the fact that when these sales are made they are done in mass quantities and the slaves are often immediately force marched back to the Wakanari Highlands.

Mormyr (approx population: 6,200) – This walled village sits at an advantageous trading point between Kanlagar and Gexor. While currently outstripped in population by nearby Nimyos, its access to the sea stands to see this small community grow in leaps and bounds. The houses of Mormyr, while currently modest, are quickly developing into great manor houses as many lesser red wizards have begun to lay claim to land in the nearby hills. This has put them at odds with a nearby community of wemic druids just to the south of Mormyr, though the current red wizard fetish for planting numerous fruit trees to decorate their abodes has forestalled any physical response so far.

Murkana (approx population: 8,300) – this farming village is set deep inland in the Western Pridelands. It is a city whose main population is of young muislings and the slave trainers who teach them how to work the fields.

Nalidul (approx population: 12,000) – fortress city on the border of the Western Pridelands. It protects the local farming communities as well as patrolling the nearby lakes and rivers. The barracks here are fairly austere, with the soldiers employed here often spending a few months here before being rotated out to the nearby communities of Murkana, Valiya, or Gexor for simpler duties.

Nimyos (approx population: 13,000) – This small village, along with the village of Mormyr, is rich in agriculture. They've planted numerous groves of oranges, mangoes, and pineapple. This village employs many muisling slaves to plant, grow, and harvest its crops, maintain its irrigation canals, and breed new muisling slaves (which are delivered north for sale every few months in the city of Nethinjori or south to the city of Murkana).

Tazmitahl islands (approx population 95,000 spread across seven islands) – These islands are primarily inhabited by tasloi, though the red wizards have setup several small, ramshackle seaward communities with the aim of harvesting these tasloi as slaves and fodder for their armies. These communities are filled primarily with non-humans such as Nezumi, Noceri, Rhinaurs, Tabaxi, and Ibideans, but all are led by Mulan authorities who control the colony as its local autharch. These islands produce natural harvests of bananas and papaya, as well as calabash gourds and poisonous balsam apple fruits. The red wizards particularly prize these islands as a source of lumber. They have been very careful to only harvest wood in small areas at a time, and they seek to replant using tasloi slaves to perform the majority of this work of gathering small trees from the jungle interior and transporting them to be replanted in newly denuded areas.

Valiya (approx population: 11,000) – Previously this small city was the border between Gexor and the rest of the Pridelands, however, in the past two decades, the city of Jhaalath has grown to the south, insulating Valiya and allowing it to grow. Valiya has become a city known for harboring raiders who use the sea to travel south and west to obtain slaves and other commodities. As a result, this city has seen a population swell of nezumi, tabaxi, gnolls, and Ibideans who show up looking to work as sailors.

Zulaos (approx population: 1,800) – a small community on the outskirts of Mikkelen which is filled with shops for the adventurous, whether it be piracy, slavery, or simply adventuring. This is a common stopping point for slavers with small numbers of slaves captured from the interior

Religion

Worship of the gods of magic, Savras, Leira, Velsharoon, and Deneir are common throughout mulan held territories, and typically where there is a temple setup to one of these deities, there is also a shrine to each of the others. Talos, especially in his form as lord of wild and destructive magics, is also a favorite amongst this tharch.

In addition, when the metahel travelled with the mulan peoples to leave the Lopango Jungles, the mulan people had been exposed to the Metahel religion. In particular, they held several deities that the mulan people equated to deities of the Faerunian pantheon, and wherever there are temples to one deity in this tharch, there is also a shrine to his/her alternate name. For instance, Sifya, the War Mother, is the Metahel goddess of excellence in battle, and is often associated to the red berries of the rowan ash tree. The mulan people equate this to their goddess known as the Red Knight. The husband of Sifya in the Metahel pantheon is a jealous, raging Thunder god named Thoros, whom the mulan people equate to Talos. The goddess Eldunna, she who grows magical healing mangos with the waters of the goldenheart spring, is thought to be the peace goddess, Eldath. Fraeyollo, lord of spring plantings and the sun blade, is believed to be Lathander. There is also a sentry of the gods, Hemdahl, who steadfastly guards the heavens and a god of blood oaths, Anachtar, whom the mulan people equate to Helm and Tyr. Whether these deities are truly metahel deities answering the prayers of the mulan people or vice versa has been something of a debate over the past century. However, what is known is that these deities continued to grant divine magic even after the transfer to Abeir, and therefore they are unlike the many Faerunian deities who went suddenly silent.


Military


Life and Society

Many of the laws of this tharch have shaped how it has grown as a society. The most prominent revolve around the need to increase the population of pureblood mulan humans. For instance, most commoners that are Pureblood mulans tend to marry another Pureblood mulan and produce large families to manage whatever lands they possess. Meanwhile, mulan half-breed males generally find themselves living their lives with a mulan half-breed female; however, both often must share their mate with a mulan pureblood or several mulan purebloods so that they can produce enough pureblood children to satisfy the state. It is extremely rare to find human individuals who are mating with other races, such as orcs, elves, fiends, etc... within this tharch, or even human individuals mating with non-Mulans. Anabrax island, which was given to the Metahel humans who aided the founding of this tharch, is the one place that does not fit this mold, and it has no laws regarding race for land ownership or required reproduction rate.

As a result, its not unusual to find a pureblood mulan male owning large tracts of land who is maintaining a personal harem of mulan half-breeds, mulan purebloods, and even non-mulan human females, with many of these females working as overseers of their master's slaves and agricultural holdings, or managing the household and its children. Similarly, its not unusual to find a pureblood mulan women who is maintaining a personal “harem” of mulan half-breeds to manage her lands, all of whom work to support her for a decade or more just to get the chance to produce a pureblood child.

Since only pureblood mulans can be landowners, this also drives much of what happens within their society. For instance, some families wish for pureblood daughters, as it means less children will have to be born of them, and in lean times half-breeds of some means may purchase the chance to produce a “pureblood” child that is not required to inherit any of the families lands. Many pureblood males who are younger members of their families do not stand to inherit any family land, or perhaps only small tracts from their mother. This has caused much of the expansion in this Tharch, as pureblood males and groups of half-breeds gather together to form a militant arm and clear out a new territory to call their own in order to gain new property. Since this Tharch is roughly three human generations old, this has resulted in two such major expansions, the first being the creation of Gexor and the conquering of the Tazmitahl islands which supplied many of the slave soldiers which enabled this movement. The second such expansion was almost thirty years ago, when numerous half-breed mulans were offered the opportunity to own property in a new Tharch by Zulkir Yaphyll, culminating in the formation of the tharch of New Eltabbar. .

Notable Laws specific to the Tharch

Only Mulan Purebloods may own land within the tharch. Mulan Purebloods may lease the use of land to other individuals as they see fit, but the owners are responsible for paying taxes on land that they own. In lieu of taxes, service to the tharch may be negotiated with the Tharchion or his locally appointed autharch, often in the form of military service. Mulan Purebloods may offer the services of anyone living on their land in lieu of performing service themselves.

Only Mulan Purebloods may inherit property within the tharch. Generally, all property is divided equally amongst the first five qualifying children still living, with no property going to the other parent. It is because of this ruling that the idea of shared property is unusual in this tharch, even with a husband and wife, and generally property is assigned even while both are living.

Children are to be magically checked at birth to prove who their mother and father are. If parentage of both parents is unable to be proven within the first ten years of a child's life, and the Child's parent is a Mulan Pureblood, the child is considered a Mulan half-breed. Otherwise the child is deemed non-mulan. Children are provided a certificate of birth provided by the Tharch and is magically marked according to their Mulan status.

A Mulan Pureblood, by the laws of this tharch, is considered any person born of two human parents, of which one parent is a Mulan Pureblood and the other parent is either a Mulan Pureblood or a Mulan half-breed. All Mulan-blooded individuals who started this Tharch were considered Mulan Purebloods for purposes of this law. Individual Mulans moving to this Tharch from other Tharchs, who are not red wizards, must provide proof of their Pureblood status or be automatically deemed Mulan half-breeds.

A Mulan half-breed, by the laws of this tharch, is considered to be any person born of two human parents matching one of two scenarios. First would be a Mulan Pureblood human mating with a non-Mulan blooded human. Also, a Mulan half-breed reproducing with another Mulan half-breed creates a child which is considered Mulan Half-breed.

A Mulan half-breed, by the laws of this tharch, reproducing with a being who is not a Mulan Pureblood or half-breed produces a non-Mulan.

Mulan females (whether Pureblood or half-breed) must reproduce at least 5 pureblood mulan children by the age of thirty, unless they are wizards. Those who fail to do so are taxed for each child that they are missing.

Mulan half-breed males may not reproduce with non-mulans, unless they are wizards. Mulan half-breed males must produce at least one Mulan Pureblood by the age of thirty. Those who fail to do so are forced into slavery.

Mulan Pureblood males must have at least 5 mates, and they must reproduce at least ten Pureblood Mulan children. Those who fail to do so are taxed for each child that they are missing.


Major Imports and Exports


Major Geographical Features

Plots and Rumors

Relationship with neighboring populations

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas

Edited by - sleyvas on 17 Jan 2018 02:50:58
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sleyvas
Great Reader

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7126 Posts

Posted - 17 Jan 2018 :  02:57:38  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
This is my introduction to the Tharch of New Eltabbar. Where the people of the western pridelands are struggling to survive, these are the spoiled children who are living in the lap of luxury (or as much luxury as they can achieve).

Tharch of New Eltabbar
Perhaps no tharch explores the luxuries of life than the scions of New Eltabbar. These mulan wizards are both self-assured and ruthless in their control of their own environment. Beautiful silk cloths, Trimmed furs, fine sculpture and paintings, exquisite flavored tobaccos, powerful incenses, exotic flavored teas and coffees, numerous personal servants and large harems are all considered their rightful due. Mind altering opiates are found commonly amongst the lesser population, though it is considered a weakness amongst the nobility to use such themselves, and it is through control of these substances that the nobility keeps many of its servants and soldiers in check. Coming from several generations of conquering red wizards, they consider their tharch the shining star that is the heart of the United Tharchs of Toril. Of course, this arrogance does have a basis in the success with which this Tharch was stolen from its previous owners and turned into a thriving center of human achievement.

Even as the red wizards were establishing their hold on the Western Pridelands, they uncovered secrets about the Eastern Pridelands of Katashaka. The Leonine catfolk known as the Lenastans held a raised plateau in Northeastern Katashaka. Their society was one which valued combat skill above all else amongst their males, and those males who were found to be unfit were cast out so that they may prove themselves, if not outright killed. The remaining males lived as rulers over vast harems of female Lenasta, as well as captured cat folk of other tribes.

These disgruntled male Lenastans were the key to the downfall of the society, as they provided critical intelligence information in return for lives of relative ease as guards in the western pridelands' and Lopango red wizard colonies. The red wizards offered these Lenastans revenge on those who had cast them out, as well as a chance to take their own choice Lenastan females as mates. The exiles leapt at the chance, and devoted themselves to training in elite fighting units which would help lead the red wizards' lesser tasloi, cayma, gnoll, nezumi, and firenewt forces. After a year long preparatory campaign, the red wizards launched a devastating assault upon the plateau which first took out the highest levels of its nobility via magically aided assassination teams. This was followed up by open assaults against Lenastan strongholds and military leaders which caught them totally unawares. The common Lenastan soldiers fought valiantly, but they soon knew they were defeated. With the destruction of their leadership, the survivors bent the knee to their new Mulan masters in return for their lives. It would later be discovered that some Lenastan nobility and their supporters had managed to escape into the wilds.

The red wizards quickly set about establishing their hold on this plateau, which soon came to be known as “The Katashakan Priador”. They enslaved all Lenastan females, keeping them in plush harems. They then used breeding rights with these females to control their new Lenastan allies, with no Lenastan male being refused the right to breed so long as he would serve. However, those who served as warriors would be given more of a selection. Children born in the harem would come to be raised communally, males becoming either servants or soldiers, females returning to the harems. Select Lenastan warriors that proved their loyalty and worth were allowed to free a female from the harems and take them as a wife, and their children would be free to live and love as they see fit so long as they also serve as soldiers. This has led in recent generations to female Lenastan warriors who are allowed to choose their own mates just like their female Mulan masters.

Unlike the western pridelands where the red wizards sought to settle in widespread settlements across the coastline, the Mulan leaders found themselves in control of an easily defensible area. Instead they set about improving the modest fortifications, using slave and undead labor. They quickly established a small port city, named Lasmodu, so that they could begin importing materials from the neighboring tharchs. They also made a timely alliance with another sub-race of small rodent folk, known as Meerkatians, who possess some natural talents with elemental earth magics, in return for protection from the predators in the surrounding territory.

As a result of the Meerkatian's aid, a great central lake and a city with numerous small islands separated by small waterways was established. This city, dubbed New Eltabbar, was surrounded by imposing brick walls and a pair of bridges providing the only path to the land. This city has tripled in size over the past few decades, with each major expansion also being small islands with connecting walls created by digging the lake deeper and wider. As a result, Lake Eltabbar has tripled in size as well, and is dotted with several small islands that have the odd wizard's tower or small temple surrounded by a half dozen farms, and as a result, New Eltabbar has two well protected gatehouses in their outside walls allowing small sailing ships to enter and exit for fishermen or trade goods. New Eltabbar has become the shining capitol of the Tharch, and in fact is also the city for which the Tharch is now named. A few smaller cities, strongholds, and large magical academies have also been built on the Katashakan Priador, but none rival the beauty and majesty of New Eltabbar. Outside of these villages, small irrigation canals and meticulously tilled fields cover nearly every other square mile of the plateau.

In the surrounding lands, known as the Eastern Pridelands, there are numerous small roaming tribes of tabaxi, lion-like wemics, gnolls, zebra-like centaurs with ebony skin, tauric antelope men known as the Nyaalaku, tauric cat folk which collectively refer to themselves as the Kitaari, nezumi rat men, wild meerkatians, and numerous other creatures. There are even some other strange rodent races, such as telepathic muislings that are known as craniars, and were believed to have been experimented upon by illithids using the same methods to create cranium rats. The hamster like beguilers which were formerly thought to exist only in Halruaa are believed to have several “hidden under illusions” homes both above and below ground, and their hides are greatly prized by the illusionists of New Eltabbar.

These red wizards however also face much more determined and dangerous foes, many of whom possess powerful magics themselves. Latoombe, City of Tricksters, is a city ruled by a council of rakshasa which also possesses many shapeshifting cat folk including many lyncanthropes (such as weretigers, werepanthers, werejaguars, and wereleopards) whose humanoid form is often that of a gnoll or tabaxi. The common folk of this city are the Paka, an anthropomorphic cat folk of all colors normally found amongst cats great and small, many of whom are warlocks or priests beholden to powers of the nine hells. The Paka are shapechangers which can take on human form, but which also have the ability to see and hear through the eyes of nearby cats and other feline creatures, as well as the ability to dominate such creatures to their will. There is also a type of catfolk that the red wizards call the Ghirrash, a black-furred, sometimes tiger striped (both white and orange), and sometimes leopard spotted breed of humanoid cat folk who some believe to be related to the displacer beasts due to their four arms and natural displacement ability. Whether these cat folk are truly related to the shadowbeasts known as the Ghirrash is debatable, as these Ghirrash lack many of the traits common to creatures of the shadowfell, and they actually call themselves the Pumaji. There is also a race of catfolk similar to the Pumaji in coloration, but rather than 4 arms, they have two arms and 4 snake-headed tentacles that grow from their shoulders, and their tails sometimes end in rattles. This race is known as the Kamadji, and many notice an obvious similarity between them and the kamatlan cat. Also, unlike the Pumaji, they lack the displacement effect. The numbers of humans being sacrificed upon the altars of this city has risen markedly since they began to leave the safety of the Katashakan Priador, and this city's owlcat mounted cavalry has even been known to raid the Katashakan Priador in the middle of the night.

Grrawlins, referred to as “the City of the Cowardly Lenastans” by the people of New Eltabbar, is where the former Lenastan nobility and their remaining servants were able to flee. They plot their revenge against these treacherous humans who have invaded their homeland, meanwhile struggling simply to survive. It is rumored that the leadership of this community has been secretly subsumed by rakshasa from Latoombe.

Shimmani, City of the Cat Queens, is a city ruled by lamia but filled with numerous tauric creatures, such as lion-like wemics, numerous other cat-like Taurics which collectively refer to themselves as the Kitaari, antelope-like Nyaalaku, zebra-like centaurs, a goat-like creature that red wizards believe to be related to bariaur, warthog like swinotaurs, and huge Rhinaurs. Most of these tauric creatures are males, as the decadence of the lamia of this city is both well known and well deserved. Despite being called the city of the Cat Queens, the lamia of this city are known to have varied different body types (boar, goat, antelope, deer, lion, leopard, panther, zebra, donkey, and even snakes of all markings). There are no reports of any living male lamia, though the reason for this is a topic of numerous conjecture. This city is a sprawling city filled with majestic buildings separated by hideous and foul slums, many of these slums being filled with dens of those who abuse the poppy flowers which fill the city. The slave trade is common throughout this city, and the capture of humans of New Eltabbar are considered a rare prize. The “Cat Queens” find human flesh delectable, but mainly seek out children of all humanoid races. They are known to breastfeed these children even as they sup on the childs own blood. After years of care, many of these children find themselves sacrificed upon the altars of Lamashtu, former consort of Pazuzu and Demon Queen of Monstrous Births and Deformity. The worship of other Demon Lords, in particular Graz'zt, is not unheard of, but worship of Pazuzu in particular is frowned upon, and the sacrifice of flying creatures is a common site throughout the city.

The centuries old enmity between the devil worshipping cat folk of Latoombe and the demon worshipping lamia is perhaps one of the main reasons that the red wizards of New Eltabbar have managed to survive, for more than one black furred pumaji warlock or priest has had its body flayed alive on an altar to Lamashtu, and its coat turned into a prized blanket or cloak. The Pumaji and Paka of Latoombe have also taken to breeding and training mounstrous owlcats to serve as mounts, giving their city an aerial cavalry that is a hated sight as they fly over Shimmani down to the Black Hills of the Cave Lizards to capture slaves, or simply to feed their owlcats which are not disturbed by the smell of troglodyte. Occasionally, this flying cavalry has dropped hundreds of wild troglodytes into unguarded sections of their enemy city just to cause chaos.

Despite the dangers of the cities of Shimmani and Latoombe, it is actually Yithakar, land of the Earth Emperor, which has proven to be the most dangerous threat, as well as being the most closed off region. This mountainous region is ruled by the elusive yak folk which inhabit it, but there are numerous minotaurs and ibixians, a type of humanoid goatmen, which are the primary population. While worship of the “Faceless One” is the primary religion of the region, it is also common for them to worship Ogremoch, the Prince of Elemental evil earth. In addition, demon worship, particularly that of Eltab, Yeenoghu, Orcus and Baphomet, is very common throughout the countryside. It is not unknown to find summoned Marrashi, bulezau, succubi, and even occasionally more powerful demons such as goristro working with the beast men of this region. Large groupings of yak folk can also typically call upon earth elementals and even genies for aid. However, it is their secrecy and ability to infiltrate other societies which makes them a danger, though proving that they've had involvement afterwards has been hard, especially since they work to lay blame for their actions on other parties. In fact, the war between the cities of Latoombe and Shimmani is believed by the red wizards to be fueled by the actions of Yak folk spies possessing the bodies of individuals in the cities.

A little over two decades ago, the citizens of this Tharch began to crowd the Katashakan Priador and finally began to expand into the lands below, mostly in the form of non-Mulan human farmers and their slaves, overseen by Lenastan soldiers. Much like the western pridelands (yeah, I need to finish ... I got sidetracked)

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas
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sleyvas
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USA
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Posted - 17 Jan 2018 :  03:10:33  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Also for New Eltabbar, I have the most barebones city concepts done, but what the hell... For the tharchs of Peleveran and Wizard's Reach, I've got a lot more detail written up for the various cities. I don't know that I'll ever have time to get to all these tharchs, and I'd be willing to share if anyone wants to take a Tharch and work with me to develop it. For instance, I love the concept of Esh Alakar as a "technology/magic" tharch (as in developing mass production methods, using wind and water mills, figuring out how to make glassteel, making glassteel ships, having mathematicians and accountants, scribes, schools for master draftsmen, etc...), where the Mulans and some other Faerunians are the "scientists", and the local cultures are the workers, but I'm not sure if I'll ever get to detailing it.

Anyway, some of the cities of New Eltabbar

Brosden (approx population: 18,000) – The city of Brosden oversees the agricultural community atop the New Eltabbar plateau. It also contains a number of wizards and priests who specialize in weather magic and communicate with the nearby farmers to improve crop yields, operating out of the nearby wizard's tower. The local temple of Talos is given numerous donations, as well as periodic sacrifices, that they might steal the weather from the surrounding communities of eastern Katashaka in order to benefit themselves. This city also maintains a winding, narrow trail from the top of the plateau down to the city of Malakar below which is manned by the reanimated bodies of many of the individuals sacrificed at the altar of Talos above for both defense and transporting products from below to the cities above.
Brosden also maintains a small port which sees near constant use transporting food goods to the city of New Eltabbar and its surroundings. There is a separate dock area which specializes in the transport of slaves to Gaurau, and there is often a small slave auction held for local farmers to buy slaves before they are transported to Gaurau, resulting in a cheaper price.

Gaurau (approx population: 12,000 ) – This small city is primarily a dock for meeting and trading point for slavers outside of New Eltabbar. In addition, there are numerous local mines which mine marble and other rock useful in buildings, as well as metals such as copper, gold, and iron ore from the nearby mountains. Most slaves are sold to the mining and agricultural communities, though some are also sold as house slaves or to those who run fight rings in New Eltabbar. The local autharch and his undersecretaries maintain magically warded slave pens in which traders may place their merchandise until they are sold. These slave pens however also double as barracks for slaves that work the local mines, taxes on which line the pockets of the red wizards who maintain the wardings. It should be noted that like in the Western Pridelands, the vast majority of these slaves are muislings, many of which become meals for the local lenastan population.

Ghandara (approx population: 16,000) – Part fort and part farming community, Ghandara is often the launching point for patrols that extend from Malakar to the northern coastline and into the surrounding hills and scrublands. The temple of Savras in the town also serves as a local compound for red wizards from the schools of divination, abjuration, and transmutation, as well as a central point for healing those hurt while on patrol.

Gra'zi'ra (approx population: 11,000) – This is a small community of Lenastans who have expanded off the plateau of New Eltabbar. These Lenastans have learned much from their mulan neighbors, primarily in the form of working as sailors and farmers. However, they themselves see themselves more as overseers and ship's captains than workers. As a result the Lenastans of this community have taken up the art of slave trading and gathering.

Keltaar (approx population: 4,500) – This is a small community of lenastans who have expanded off the plateau of New Eltabbar. Primarily a military and farming community, these lenastans have in particular set themselves against the inhabitants of Latoombe, city of tricksters, and Grrawlins, the city of the lenastans in exile who formerly held the plateau upon which New Eltabbar resides. These lenastans have in particular taken to capturing tabaxi, wemics, and lamia from Shimmani, City of the Cat Queens, so as to form their own harems. This has resulted in the death of more than one lenastan who let his guard down amongst his slaves.

Malakar (approx population: 5,000) – This is a small farming community that also serves as a marketplace where merchants from the lowlands can bring their wares and sell them to traders who will see them transported and sold atop the plateau above. The temple of Talos

Sirtula Academy (approx population: 4,000 ) – This is perhaps one of the largest schools of magic to be found amongst the United Tharchs of Toril. It is also one of he most beautifully constructed set of buildings to be found throughout the tharch, as it holds the manor house of Zulkir Yaphyll, as well as temples dedicated to Savras, Leira, Velsharoon, Deneir, Talos, and even The Red Knight (whom the Metahel refer to as Sifya, The War Mother). It contains numerous small campuses allocated to each Aulkir and Khazir of this Tharch, and most mulan children living on the plateau of New Eltabbar that are found to have magical competence are typically sent to receive basic training in the art at this academy. This is an unprecedented level of cooperation amongst the wizards in any red wizard tharch which mirrors the level of comraderie common amongst the red wizards of this tharch.

Zargazu (approx population: 12,000) – This is more of a military encampment than a city, for Zargazu is where new recruits to the army and navy are sent to gain their basic training. It generally obtains older sailing vessels from Lasmodu, and uses them to patrol the waters from Zargazu to Gra'zi'ra. Merchants for the government and tax collectors generally accompany these vessels, often disembarking in Ga'zi'ra with a guard of new recruits meant to protect them as they visit many of the local villages and farms on the lower plateau to perform their duties for the government. Army recruits generally perform this relatively safe duty for a year before being assigned to their final postings for the next four years, which is generally based upon their performance during this training period. The naval recruits are expected to learn the skills of a sailor as well as the basics of ship repair by working on these older vessels for a year, and those which graduate are generally moved to serve in the navy of Lasmodu for four years. Those who do not fulfill their commitments of military service are considered outlaws, for which punishment is slavery.

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas
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Jürgen Hubert
Seeker

Germany
31 Posts

Posted - 17 Jan 2018 :  05:19:30  Show Profile  Visit Jürgen Hubert's Homepage Send Jürgen Hubert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Markustay
@Jürgen - I really LOVE the 'Attack on Titans' vibe for Lopango. Maybe - since others are doing very different things there - I can reuse that somewhere in katashaka (its pretty HUGE, and the idea of 'bestial giants' isn't really all that far off from the Xendrik lore I am trying to repsin there).



Picture a soldier standing guard on a wooden watchtower in a small fort deep in the jungle, late at night. Suddenly, a giant spear hurls out of the darkness and piercing him, and just as suddenly the spear with the soldier still impaled on it is yanked back into the jungle.

A short time later the remaining guards can hear loud smacking noises as the guard is devoured by the giant. And they can do nothing, because to go out into the jungle at night means certain death.

A German Geek - my gaming blog
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sleyvas
Great Reader

USA
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Posted - 17 Jan 2018 :  14:57:26  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Jürgen Hubert

quote:
Originally posted by Markustay
@Jürgen - I really LOVE the 'Attack on Titans' vibe for Lopango. Maybe - since others are doing very different things there - I can reuse that somewhere in katashaka (its pretty HUGE, and the idea of 'bestial giants' isn't really all that far off from the Xendrik lore I am trying to repsin there).



Picture a soldier standing guard on a wooden watchtower in a small fort deep in the jungle, late at night. Suddenly, a giant spear hurls out of the darkness and piercing him, and just as suddenly the spear with the soldier still impaled on it is yanked back into the jungle.

A short time later the remaining guards can hear loud smacking noises as the guard is devoured by the giant. And they can do nothing, because to go out into the jungle at night means certain death.



I love that idea for Katashaka. The center of the continent is where I was thinking about putting the area filled with "nyamma-numo" that are worshipped as "beast-gods" by the people there. Picture Kong: Skull Island, but with a LOT more and different cults. Periodically, these Nyamma-Numo (who sleep most of the time) wake up and they may or may not leave this center of the continent. So, this center area would also have dinosaurs and large monsters (including say cyclopskin, ettins, fomorians, and other "odd" giants that remind people of some kind of savage giant). The mountains surrounding this area should be very hard to pass through, and thus why the region stays confined for the most part.

Just to note, this also allows for their to be 3 very distinct "regions" in katashaka. The Northlands, the Nyamma-Numo Lands, and the Southlands which probably become more arctic at its tip.


By the way, in August of last year, I came up with this list of possible Nyama-Nummo for Manu-Ni-Maloa (the land of the Nyama-Nummo) in the center of Katashaka. BTW, comparing this land, Manu-Ni-Maloa, to Faerun; it would be roughly the size as a square stretching from say Narfell's border with Impiltur all the way to the sword coast and then proceeding north to Icewind Dale. So, there's LOTS of room to have these Nyama-Nummo each ruling a region as vast as say Cormyr and Sembia combined.

these nyama-nummo are sleeping/dreaming away the centuries, and other cultures have heard of them and call them "gods". Of which this is what I've come up with for a list of these nyama-nummo

In the below Mhairshaulk, Ramenos, Camazotz, Ragarra, Kee'gah are hints to names of beings that are thought to be "sleeping" or "dead" gods in various parts off the realms. Camazotz is only mentioned as a god in Ed's first article on gods for FR in some old dragon mag, but I've seen him nowhere else, so I put him here.

Mhairshaulk, a giant snake
served by Yuan-Ti and/or other snake folk. Maybe have weresnakes.

Ramenos, lord of the Batrachi
served by grung and grippli and sivs

Camazotz, Beast Lord of Bats
served by bainligors, werebats, and a tribe of daemonfey. Recently making inroads into Lopango jungle and converting worship of captured drow. Have their cult have an infatuation with blood, darkness, and cannibalism.

Ragarra, a gargantuan, winged half-dragon deinosuchus
This dinosaur like half-dragon crocodile named Ragarra is served by crocodilians

Gozirra, the giant spineback reptile which spits lightning and roars thunder;
Served by a tribe of half-blue dragon lizard folk that have spiny backs.

Tarrask, the giant rending horror
served by raptor-like saurials and lizard folk.

Kaeng, the gargantous, bonespur covered ape
Served by bigfoot-like humanoids (Alaghi)

Gabara, the giant fire-breathing snapping turtle
served by a variation of bullywug that has grown a shell like a turtle.

Groedan, the giant pterasaur with the resounding shriek
served by pterafolk

Ghidoera, the many headed dragon-like beast
served by Ettins who keep hydras as watchdogs.

Kee'gah, the mighty panther

A gargantuan displacer beast, but with snakeheaded tentacles like a Kamadan and bonespurs. Served by bloodthirsty tabaxi and wereleopards who capture beings of other tribes and convert them into wereleopards.

Heresa Hesi, the Vulture King
A giant vulture with some shadow and necrotic powers served by Vulture folk and kenku who keep an army of shadows/spirits and involve themselves as warlocks and spirit shamans using local spirits. Maybe they keep giant ravens and vultures that they ride. He has a predisposition for gems and his people are required to gather them to him. Give some kind of gem magic to his culture.

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas

Edited by - sleyvas on 17 Jan 2018 16:40:06
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Markustay
Realms Explorer extraordinaire

USA
15675 Posts

Posted - 19 Jan 2018 :  20:11:04  Show Profile Send Markustay a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Scorrow. Just sayin'

I love them! Not for Maztica (I will be creating my own thread soon, when I have the map ready), because Maztica already has Tlincallis (Scorpionmen). I'm thinking they are very cool for Katashaka (meets Xendrik). I wanted Maz and Kata stuff to be different, especially the drow (since they are so overused elsewhere), and these guys are perfect - Katshakan versions of Driders!

So, in Maztica we have Lolth (who may be posing as someone else - I'm not up on that lore), and she's been butting-heads with Tiamat there for some time. My assumption here is that Tiamat is part of the Maztican pantheon, but in the same way Satan would be part of the Christian one - its an 'evil entity' they know about but don't really talk about, that has very little interaction with their 'gods' anymore (whom I also think are aliases for all the draconic powers). Its really easy to explain if we spin it like its one of those "speak his name (the devil) and he shall appear" type of cultural things. The Faerûnians will have learned about her (she may have a different name, like Lymasdhra, or some such) of course, in the past century, but give her as little thought as the Mazticans do. Deep in the jungle, however, she would have 'cults', and thats how the Tlincallis came about (in RW mythology, it was Tiamat who created the scorpionmen). Anyhow, Tiamat already had a very good 'base of operations' in the region, and when the drow showed-up, she simply moved to overwhelm (and overawe) them. Lolth was busy elsewhere at the time (she may have even just been a 'Demon Queen' still - I don't now the timeline), and didn't realize Tiamat had poached her worshipers until too late.

Moving south, we already have a drow presence - primitive drow left-over from the time of the Giant Empires (the elves were all slaves on Katahsaka back then, just as they were to the dragons in Faerûn). In fact, we could even spin it that the word 'slaves' (on Toril) is really just a debased form of the giantish word 'elves'. Slevs? Something like that. Anyway, Lolth decides to exert her will over some of these drow tribes (each is different, according to Xendrik lore...some VERY different), but she sees how the stingers of Tiamat's creations could be useful, and she creates the first Scorrow - Drow-Scorpion hybrid. Since Scorpions ARE arachnids, they fall under her purview, so their is no problem there religiously.

Humans are practically unheard of in Katashaka - civilized ones are a fairly new thing to them (the island chain to the north has become something of a 'pirate haven'). They only had cavemen; small normal ones and a larger, more aggressive variety in the cold, southern regions (the Neanderthals of the Frostburn supplement). And they were considered a 'food source' to just about everyone else. Its been rather hard convincing the Drow and others not to eat the new human arrivals (there is a rumor that a group of Weresharks from the Rashear Coast have been trying to teach others this - "humans are friends, NOT food", but it hasn't really caught on).

There are several 'bug' races though, and Thri-Kreen can even be found beneath Stormwrath (my Realms version of Stormreach). Some are friendly (sort of... as friendly as bugs can get), and some are very hostile. This is all from the Xen'drik material, but it shoe-horns nicely with the 'giant ant people' stuff we have going on just north of Maztica (in the City of Gold product). BTW, there is also a rumored 'City of Gold' in Katashaka (Xendrik) as well - I don't really see a problem with that. It's just a plothook, and could really be anything we want it to be.

Dark Elves, bug-people, ape-people, bird-people, cat-people, etc., etc., everything but people-people.

Are you guys using Saurials at all in Maztica? I really wanted to place them in Katashaka, but I don't want the two areas to be too much alike (although a couple of primitive tribes won't hurt anything). Maybe I can make mine a whole 'nother offshoot (a degraded form of Sarrukh, based on Sleestak).

"I have never in my life learned anything from any man who agreed with me" --- Dudley Field Malone


Edited by - Markustay on 19 Jan 2018 20:38:24
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sleyvas
Great Reader

USA
7126 Posts

Posted - 19 Jan 2018 :  20:36:16  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Markustay

Scorrow. Just sayin'

I love them! Not for Maztica (I will be creating my own thread soon, when I have the map ready), because Maztica already has Tlincallis (Scorpion[b]men). I'm thinking they are very cool for Katashaka (meets Xendrik). I wanted Maz and Kata stuff to be different, especially the drow (since they are so overused elsewhere), and these guys are perfect - Katshakan versions of Driders!

So, in Maztica we have Lolth (who may be posing as someone else - I'm not up on that lore), and she's been butting-heads with Tiamat there for some time. My assumption here is that Tiamat is part of the Maztican pantheon, but in the same way Satan would be part of the Christian one - its an 'evil entity' they know about but don't really talk about, that has very little interaction with their 'gods' anymore (whom I also think are aliases for all the draconic powers). Its really easy to explain if we spin it like its one of those "speak his name (the devil) and he shall appear" type of cultural things. The Faerûnians will have learned about her (she may have a different name, like Lymasdhra, or some such) of course, in the past century, but give her as little thought as the Mazticans do. Deep in the jungle, however, she would have 'cults', and thats how the Tlincallis came about (in RW mythology, it was Tiamat who created the scorpionmen). Anyhow, Tiamat already had a very good 'base of operations' in the region, and when the drwo showed-up, she simply moved to overwhelm (and overawe) them. Lolth was busy elsewhere at the time (she may have even just been a 'Demon Queen' still - I don't now the timeline), and din't realize Tiamat had poached her worshipers until too late.

Moving south, we already have a drow presence - primitive drow left-over from the time of the Giant Empires (the elves were all slaves on Katahsaka back then, just as they were to the dragons in Faerûn). In fact, we could even spin it that the word 'slaves' (on Toril) is really just a debased form of the giantish word 'elves'. Slevs? Something like that. Anyway, Lolth decides to exert her will over some of these drow tribes (each is different, according to Xendrik lore...some VERY different), but she sees how the stingers of Tiamat's creations could be useful, and she creates the first Scorrow - Drow-Scorpion hybrid. Since Scorpions ARE arachnids, they fall under her purview, so their is no problem there religiously.

Humans are practically unheard of in Katashaka - civilized ones are a fairly new thing to them (the island chain to the north has become something of a 'pirate haven'). They only had cavemen; small normal ones and a larger, more aggressive variety in the cold, southern regions (the Neanderthals of the Frostburn supplement). And they were considered a 'food source' to just about everyone else. Its been rather hard convincing the Drow and others not to eat the new human arrivals (there is a rumor that a group of Weresharks from the Rashear Coast have been trying to teach others this - "humans are friends, NOT food", but it hasn't really caught on).

There are several 'bug' races though, and Thri-Kreen can even be found beneath Stormwrath (my Realms version of Stormreach). Some are friendly (sort of... as friendly as bugs can get), and some are very hostile. This is all from the Xen'drik material, but it shoe-horns nicely with the 'giant ant people' stuff we have going on just north of Maztica (in the City of Gold product). BTW, there is also a rumored 'City of Gold' in Katashaka (Xendrik) as well - I don't really see a problem with that. It's just a plothook, and could really be anything we want it to be.

Dark Elves, bug-people, ape-people, cat-people, etc., etc., everything but people-people.

Are you guys using Saurials at all in Maztica? I really wanted to place them in Katashaka, but I don't want the two areas to be too much alike 9although a couple of primitive tribes won't hurt anything). maybe I can make mine a whole 'nother offshoot (a degraded form of Sarrukh, based on Sleestak).



on the Saurials in Maztica... No, because most of Maztica has been done. I've been back and forth on putting them in Katashaka though. I say that because I'm already doing Noceri (aka Rhinotaurs or rhino humanoids), Rhinaurs (a tauric version of Rhino humanoid found in a novel star of cursrah), Giff, and Loxo. But all of those are mammalian cultures. If I did add a Sauroid culture, it would probably be in that portion I'm calling Manu-Ni-Maloa, the land of the Nyama-Nummo. So, there would be dinosaurs, saurials, and such but also kaiju like creatures that want to eat them.

On the Scorrow... yeah, I was looking at them yesterday and thinking about the Tlincalli. Honestly, I wouldn't put them in Toril, since we already have Tlincalli. That being said, I'm tempted to put a tribe of Tlincalli down in Manu-Ni-Maloa and have them worshipping a giant scorpion Kaiju just for something different. Maybe give an underdark link from them to the tlincalli of Maztica that goes under the ocean.

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas
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Markustay
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Posted - 19 Jan 2018 :  21:15:35  Show Profile Send Markustay a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Well, I'm leaving the Scorrow as a created, Katashaka-only thing, so not a bunch of them, and are only created by Lolth through her priesthood (so technically not a 'race' at all).

I think I am going to use Kaspaerian Island (which I should rename, now that I know there is ZERO Eberron lore for it) for my Sleestak (Saurstalk?) Basically, there was a Sarrukh 'kingdom' there, but it fell on hard times, and those are very devolved versions of them. Maybe having them fight an 'ancient war' with Bullywugs or some such - a hold-over from the Sarrukh-Batrachi wars. They've been fighting for so many thousands of years they no longer have any idea for what. Poor Bastards have been waiting around for their 'Gods' to return (because of all the advanced ruins), and they don't even realize, THEY were 'the gods'. And just because I totally want to rip-off Land of the Lost (not the wretched movie, the kid's show from the 70's I remember so fondly), there will be one Sarrukh who was in stasis for thousands of years, who only 'woke-up' recently (probably blame it on the Spellplague), and he is a maudlin, wretched creature (but the Saurstalk worship him, so there is that). That will be like its own separate, mini-setting, away from Katashaka proper.

Katashaka itself will have been Aeree territory, for the most part, which is why you won't really find the other Creatori there. And since they ruins will be on the highest mountaintops, and there's some insanely tall mountains, its not like people are really going to know about them, either.

"I have never in my life learned anything from any man who agreed with me" --- Dudley Field Malone


Edited by - Markustay on 20 Jan 2018 03:36:38
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Markustay
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Posted - 21 Jan 2018 :  04:27:57  Show Profile Send Markustay a Private Message  Reply with Quote
What started out as a simple, straight-forward conversion turned into a project. It seems FR isn't the only setting that's has lore about one region spread all over the place, across multiple sourcebooks! Hell, I never even knew there was such a thing as the Eberron Explorer's Handbook.

Plus, the VG (DDO: Stormreach) has its own lore, which is not exactly consistent with the D&D RPG stuff (like settlements the Eberron canon says don't exist). Still, I think its worth the effort. I also had to look back at Nyambe, because I based some of my CKC article on using that for Katashaka, and although that's no longer the plan, I want to keep my new lore consistent with what I wrote in the article (even though some of it becomes 'orphaned' without the rest of the Nyambe material). I'm glad for some of it, though - without the Nymabe stuff from way back, I would never have considered Mulhorandi ruins in Katashaka (in my CKC article, I placed a gate in Gbor Nor that leads to a place just off the west coast of Katashaka)*. Not sure what to do with this with 4e behind us and 5e in front of us - we've had the Imaskari (who I am sure knew about and used the Gate), and then we had the Mulans return. I have to think of a cool way to spin all of that. Perhaps the Imaskari restarted a fallen Mulhorandi settlement? (which may have, itself, been built on top of even older Imaskar ruins). Not sure yet - I looked to Golarion's Osirion for inspiration, but I'm just not feeling it (that lore works better melded with Mulhorand itself). Maybe something akin to WHFB's 'Tomb Kings' region.

I'm also thinking about swapping-out my Mokalonni (formerly Wakaloni) natives for Kalashtar (Eberron), at least crunch-wise. They'd be very different lore-wise, and also visually (my natives are halfelves, but ones that have been so for 15K+ years, so they are their own race now) Actually, with all the drow stuff I added from Xendrik, I might make them crinti (Halfdrow), at least visually. Some sort of weird cross between half (dark) elves and Polynesians. So, like really dark Hawaiians with pointy ears. Still very tall and beautiful like Kalishtar, though. I'm just not 100% sure because of the psionics thing (this would have no connection to te EB Kalashtar lore, which is VERY setting-specific). That's the only race from EB I've been having trouble shoe-horning in - the rest are very easy (like changelings and Shifters - great adds for our setting, BTW)

Xen'drik has wooden Warforged... I kid you not. Very 'early models' left over from the Giant Empires.

*EDIT
It might be expeditious for me to place another, hitherto-unknown Sea-Gate somewhere nearby that leads to the Sword Coast. I already have three Gates in the area, but there are logical reasons for that 'crowding' (the Batrachi built all the Sea Gates). If the Batrachi once had a kingdom somewhere around the east coast of Lopango, then I can put a Gate around there, without it messing too much with FR lore (or what you guys are doing here).

EDIT2
I'm such an idiot - I really placed all the gates there to create a believable 'pirate area' that attracts pirates from all over the world (what can say? I had just seen the PotC movie with the Pirate Lords). Thus, if they are placed all around my island chains, then the island chains themselves should be the Batrachi ruins! Uh-DOH!

"I have never in my life learned anything from any man who agreed with me" --- Dudley Field Malone


Edited by - Markustay on 21 Jan 2018 20:28:57
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sleyvas
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Posted - 21 Jan 2018 :  16:35:08  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Markustay

What started out as a simple, straight-forward conversion turned into a project. It seems FR isn't the only setting that's has lore about one region spread all over the place, across multiple sourcebooks! Hell, I never even knew there was such a thing as the Eberron Explorer's Handbook.

Plus, the VG (DDO: Stormreach) has its own lore, which is not exactly consistent with the D&D RPG stuff (like settlements the Eberron canon says don't exist). Still, I think its worth the effort. I also had to look back at Nyambe, because I based some of my CKC article on using that for Katashaka, and although that's no longer the plan, I want to keep my new lore consistent with what I wrote in the article (even though some of it becomes 'orphaned' without the rest of the Nyambe material). I'm glad for some of it, though - without the Nymabe stuff from way back, I would never have considered Mulhorandi ruins in Katashaka (in my CKC article, I placed a gate in Gbor Nor that leads to a place just off the west coast of Katashaka)*. Not sure what to do with this with 4e behind us and 5e in front of us - we've had the Imaskari (who I am sure knew about and used the Gate), and then we had the Mulans return. I have to think of a cool way to spin all of that. Perhaps the Imaskari restarted a fallen Mulhorandi settlement? (which may have, itself, been built on top of even older Imaskar ruins). Not sure yet - I looked to Golairon's Osirion for inspiration, but I'm just not feeling it (that lore works better melded with Mulhorand itself). Maybe something akin to WHFB's 'Tomb Kings' region.

I'm also thinking about swapping-out my Mokalonni (formerly Wakaloni) natives for Kalashtar (Eberron), at least crunch-wise. They'd be very different lore-wise, and also visually (my natives are halfelves, but ones that have been so for 15K+ years, so they are their own race now) Actually, with all the drow stuff I added from Xendrik, I might make them crinti (Halfdrow), at least visually. Some sort of weird cross between half (dark) elves and Polynesians. So, like really dark Hawaiians with pointy ears. Still very tall beautiful like Kalishtar, though. I'm just not 100% sure becuase of the psionics thing (this would have no connection to te EB Kalashtar lore, which is VERY setting-specific). Thats the only race from EB I've been having trouble shoe-horning in - the rest are very easy (like changelings and Shifters - great adds for our setting, BTW)

Xen'drik has wooden Warforged... I kid you not. Very 'early models' left over from the Giant Empires.

*EDIT
It might be expeditious for me to place another, hitherto-unknown Sea-Gate somewhere nearby that leads to the Sword Coast. I already have three Gates in the area, but there are logical reasons for that 'crowding' (the Batrachi built all the Sea Gates). If the Batrach once had a kingdom somewhere around the east coast of Lopango, then I can put a Gate around there, without it messing too much with FR lore (or what you guys are doing here).

EDIT2
I'm such an idiot - I really placed all the gates there to create a believable 'pirate area' that attracts pirates from all over the world (what can say? I had just seen the PotC movie with the Pirate Lords). Thus, if they are placed all around my island chains, then the island chains themselves should be the Batrachi ruins! Uh-DOH!



Just to note, one of the things in looking at the idea of having northern Katashaka having a heavy cat folk of various varieties influence.... I ended up looking at a LOT of Egyptian gods. I ended up listing out at least 4 such gods as being in Katashaka. First is Bast (whom I have taking the name Sekhmet here, and being a bit more wild). Second is Hathor (personally, since she's looked down upon by the other Mulhorandi, my take is "she was already here"), but I have Hathor working as different names in different Katashakan pantheons (for instance as Hathor to the Yak-Men and Minotaurs, as Nekhebet amongst the bird folk, as Heqet amongst the frog folk) . Third was Pakhet and Mihos.

Pakhet is a lionheaded goddess of war and hunting, known as "She Who Scratches" and who hates snakes. She is a guardian figure in my version set to protect Mihos. She hunts for him and protects him.

Mihos is a lionheaded god of "divine retribution and vengeance"... so he has all the same portfolios as Horus... but he is a child of Ptah and Bast.

So, the general idea would be that Pakhet and Mihos left the other Mulan gods because Mihos and Horus would have come to a head. They came here because Hathor told them they could flourish here, and when Bast left Faerun she also spread here. Perhaps these Mulan people "become" some of the cat folk of Katashaka (the Lenastan lion folk very much works for me).

Part of me thinks making them aspects might work better, but I like the idea that the Mulan gods had some sort of falling out. Particularly if Ptah isn't in the realms and Mihos is a son of Ptah. He may not like Ra very much because maybe Ra forced Ptah out or somesuch.

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas

Edited by - sleyvas on 21 Jan 2018 17:02:19
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Markustay
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Posted - 21 Jan 2018 :  20:46:03  Show Profile Send Markustay a Private Message  Reply with Quote
See, I ported all my normal humans over to nearby Tabaxiland (even closer than it appears - it's like one of those side-view mirror things LOL).

I kept the one settlement I had on the map I made for my old Sea Gates article, but now its an Ondonti settlement (there is a swath of coastal area there where the other races leave them be). Thus, the only 'peaceful' race in my version of Katashaka would be Orcs... ain't that a kick in the head?

Another problem I have is that I specifically called-out the 'Black Corsairs' in my article, so I might have to say they are from Tabaxiland*, since I don't want the Ondonti to be raiders (at least one group of Katashakans has to not be).

I should have the map up today, BTW. I was going to wait until I named everything, but I am having some trouble naming mountain ranges (I am so sick of the fantasy-convention of given them idiotic names like 'the mountains of death', etc. NOBODY actually names crap like that!) so, since I will be getting input form others as I move forward, I should just post what I have, and then I can fill-in the rest. Plus, at some point I switched from straight-out using the Xendrik names to creating similar-sounding FR names... except for the ruins, but their is a solid lore-reason for that (they actually exist in a transitive plane - most likely a feral portion of the feywild, know as Juton-Mango, or 'Giant Marches'... and yes, I made it sound similar to 'Jumanji' on purpose). The Eldritch giants (giants of old/pre-Sundering) created portable Gates that giant explorers (Planeswalkers) could carry withem, to return home whenever they wanted, disguised as small, 'pocket games' (pocket-sized for THEM, that is). You move the 'pieces' around in the right combinations, and you could teleport home, or even somewhere else (they would be hooked to a 'fixed Gate' network). Like most artifacts, these things were VERY powerful, and overtime most of them developed a sentience - and personality - all their own. They are also able to change themselves to better 'blend in' with their surroundings (like DW's broken chameleon circuit in the Tardis).

So yeah... EXACTLY like Jumanji.


*And I still need a better name for 'Tabaxiland', although I am assuming that's just what outsiders have been calling it. The problem is, I had planned to put all the cat-races there, which is stupid, because its supposed to be the homeland of the original tabaxi people that left and went to Chult (so the forebears of both the Chultans, and the Catfolk race).

Perhaps I can simply spin it so that the ones 'left behind' were the ones that got 'pussified'.

"I have never in my life learned anything from any man who agreed with me" --- Dudley Field Malone


Edited by - Markustay on 21 Jan 2018 20:56:11
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Seethyr
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Posted - 21 Jan 2018 :  21:11:29  Show Profile  Visit Seethyr's Homepage Send Seethyr a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Markustay, how about Thudera, the home of the Thundercats?

I kid! Please no! :lol:

Anyway, the vision of what Katashaka is like has changed a lot from what I thought it would be here, but it's still some really cool stuff. I? had thought to basically import Nyambe-Tanda and increasingly research African (non Egyptian, non Arabic) lore due to the fact that it is so incredibly underrepresented in D&D. If you've never really checked out Nyambe, I highly recommend it.

There's no way I have time to throw in my two cents to Katashaka due to the fact that I currently have 4-5 DMSGuild products in the works at the same time, but I would really have mine focus on the Sleeper and other Nyamma-Nummo. MAybe even throw in the City of Salt in The Wound.

Of course, there is also a decimated civilization of orcs that might have been the most advanced they reached anywhere on Toril and practice their own forms of sorcery and sorcerous origins (found in the northern part of the continent - just south of Lopango).

I had also thought to somehow work in the plot of the Ghost and the Darkess movie as the Red Wizards who tried to exploit the locals get their butts kicked by some giant lions.

Other than those ideas, I haven't really thought too much about the continent yet.

All "Maztica Alive" products can be found below, linked to the campaign guide.

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Seethyr
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Posted - 21 Jan 2018 :  23:22:34  Show Profile  Visit Seethyr's Homepage Send Seethyr a Private Message  Reply with Quote
In the meantime, here is the text I have so far on the “Wyrm of the True World” Acalanahuatzi. I tied his development to both the Spellplague and the Sundering to explain away how only half of a creature could become undead. Once I finish up his Fate, a Lair and the Magic of the Tlalocoatl I plan on releasing it on DMSGuild. Of course it will also need a lot of editing - this was just written in a stream of consciousness.


Acalanahuatzi

When they say a man is “at war with himself” typically it concerns understanding one’s own self worth and concern over actions that might not be in their best interest.

Yet when we speak of a dragon, and a two headed ancient tlalocoatl at that - being at war with yourself might literally mean being at war.

Such is the case with Acalanahuatzi. Once a powerful messenger of Azul and a favored being in the deity’s hierarchy - Acalanahuatzi now spends its long years plotting a way to destroy its other half without destroying itself.

See, tlalocouatls, also known as “rain dragons,” are dragons who have two distinct personalities living in a single body. As servants of a divine being, these two separate souls typically act in perfect harmony. Not only does their philosophy typically fall in line, but their every thought and action sync like a perfectly orchestrated musical masterpiece. If one were to observe a tlalocoatl in combat and somehow survive, they would swear that only a single mind guided a rain dragon’s every movement.
So what exactly went wrong with Acalanahuatzi is mostly unknown, but over it’s centuries of life, the powerful rain dragon has fought and destroyed many creatures of chaos. Perhaps at some point, the cumulative effect of so much exposure to madness caused the once regimented rain dragon to fracture. Over time, the two personalities grew distant from each other, and neither were truly a servant of the god of the rains any longer

Acalan and Ahuatzi

Acalan is the jaguar-like head of the tlalocoatl whose personality, on the surface at least, seems the most in tune with its old self. Acalan would have others believe that it still seeks to bring the rains and perform its duties in the True World as it always has. When it encounters humans and can somehow prevent its other half from slaying such fragile beings, this is the plea it makes for assistance in finding powerful magic that could separate him from his serpentine sibling as it once was during the time of the Spellplague.
If a lesser creature indicates that it is unable or unwilling to do so, they will unfortunately meet its true personality. A savage predator that delights in tearing meat from the bone. This is the one occasion that both halves will once again work in tandem. Only the common goal of survival, a desire to be free from each other, and the sheer enjoyment in tearing mortals apart is shared anymore between Acalan and Ahuatzi.
Acalan also takes pleasure in drowning mortals who have done nothing more to offend him than being born. The floods that has had brought to Lopango have drawn the attention of the goddess Koni- who seeks to make Acalan (and Acalan alone) her own herald, if ever the two were to split.

Ahuatzi is unlike any tlalocoatl that has ever existed (or half of a tlalocoatl for that matter) in that it has turned from its love of the element of water and instead embraced death. Ahuatzi, once sleek and sibilant, is now a dried withering husk that still lives on with the power of unlife giving it strength. Yes, Ahauatzi, and only Ahuatzi, has become a dreaded dracolich.
Ahuatzi has sought to find a way to extend its already nigh immortal existence. At first he beseeched his lord Azul who’s nonexistent response was rightfully perceived to be an outright refusal. Desperate for recourse, the serpent headed half of the tlalocoatl began to seek out assistance among powerful mortals. Using random, and long reaching magic, Ahuatzi delved into the foreign land of Faerun where he made contact with an organization known as the Cult of the Dragon. All too willing to extend the breadth of their knowledge to the rain dragon, Ahuatzi was taught the rites necessary for his transformation - one that had never before been performed on a tlalocoatl.
Acalan might have no longer been a servant of the god Azul, but entering a state of undeatb willingly was far too much for the jaguar-headed dragon to accept. Relations had been strained between the two personalities for centuries now, but this goal of Ahuatzi could not be abided. Acalan refuses the wishes of his sibling and countered every action the serpent would take towards its goal. Ahuatzi could not gain control long enough to pursue its ambitious decision on its own.
Then came the Blue Breath of Change, known on Toril as the Spellplague. The very world was torn asunder and the entire continent of Maztica itself was dragged to the twin world of Abeir.
Acalanahuatzi was at the very edge of the land brought to Abeir at the exact moment the world was torn asunder. So perfectly so, that Acalan was whisked away with Maztica herself as Ahuatzi remained behind. Finally, after desperately seeking a way to separate themselves, chance brought the dragon their greatest wish.
Through the unbound magic of the Blue Breath, both Acalan and Ahuatzi grew fully formed bodies of their own. The jaguar headed Acalan easily adjusted to his new surroundings on Abeir and grew to command a veritable army of chac that had lost their connection to Azul in the godless world.
Ahuatzi was finally free to pursue lichdom and completed the dread rites taught to him. As a dracolich, the disjoined tlalocouatl gained the worship of a band of the cruel Supay gnomes, who determined the dracolich was a manifestation of their dark deity.
When all seemed to be falling into order for both dragons the world changed again. This time, with the Sundering, what was once broken had been brought together anew and the tlalocoatl was once again, whole (to its own chagrin).
Now half living and half unliving, Acalanahuatzi became the truly unique creature that it remains this day. Having tasted freedom from its hated brother, both dragons desire to split once again and destroy the other. Their fates are inevitably intertwined and these days, they put all of their efforts into their goal.

Fate of Acalanahuatzi

The half undead rain dragon steps ever closer to its goal as it seeks out the magic of mortals. Should they find a means of dividing themselves into two separate beings once again, the siblings will undoubtedly turn on each other immediately and it is anyone’s guess who will emerge victorious.
The tlalocoatl also has a growing list of powerful enemies as it wantonly slays any that cannot assist in its transformation. The sun priests of the Natican have found themselves targets of the dragon’s depredations increasingly as of late as the dragon now believes the Sun Staff of Intiri might assist in its goal. It is said that the god Intiri himself has taken note.
Lopango itself has seen a growing number of foreign born men and women who claim the title of “adventurers.” The Natican have been known to hire these adventurers to assault Acalanahuatzi’s lair, but few have made it past the legion of chac and gnomes that for now at least seem to be working together to protect their lord.



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TWC1 The Maztica Campaign Guide

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