The world has a long cultural history with some distinct differences from ours. These, along with the rules and information for each culture and language will be below.
World Cultural Differences
Below are some of the major differences between the game world and our world.
The concept of Chivalry does not exist in this world as it does in ours, and gender equality is the norm. The idea that men should protect women is impractical due to the nature of the afterlife – they will not be able to rely on anybody but themselves there. Instead, most cultures believe that women should be strong and martially trained just as men.
Despite the danger of bodies being raised as undead, it is considered taboo through most of the world to cremate a body. A body is to be wrapped in white cloth, and buried (or entombed) with a weapon – usually one the person wielded in life, if possible. Most cultures have some variations on this, but if you are unsure of a man’s customs, this is a safe bet.
There are several different cultures, and you may need to take more than one depending on your character’s background. As a reminder, only your native culture is free, any others you must still purchase. In instances where you have multiple cultures listed with an OR, you may consider purchasing one or more of the extras, and in cases where they are listed with an AND, it is strongly recommended you purchase the extras.
The Caelimic culture is that of the High Elves searching for and embracing their past civilization.
Unusual among the cultures of the world, people of this land burn the corpses of their dead, in a ceremony they call Tine de Rugadh Arís, or “Flames of Rebirth”.
The hearty people of the Stormlands are, as a general rule, more focused on surviving the next winter than anything like politics or spectacle. The long harsh winters force it so. With the end of the war between Gildas and Highmere, things in the region have settled down quite a bit – but most believe it is a truce as thin as the line of Rivaire’s navy which keeps it. Farther to the north, in the Northalnds and the Border Hills the focus shifts from threats of war to threats of an equally dangerous bent – Dragons and undead. Two Dragons rest in the region, Hraximathicus near the Rotting Marshes and Katla in the mountains that divide the Shiverdales from the Northlands. Hraximathicus seems to protect the destroyer worshiping cultists that flock to his area as well, and the effects of their foul magic rarely stay within their lands. Even further north, past the Border Hills and the Northlands, is completely frontier land. Populations are sparse and isolated.
Men At Arms
In the Stormlands, it is normal for any boy or girl of 13 years or older to be trained in martial combat. The most common weapon is the long sword, but others are acceptable. Exceptions are often made for those who are already pursuing other means of strength such as magic.
Gildean is by and far the most common tongue, but those living near the Northwinter Mountains may speak Angran as well, as there is a sizable Giant population there. Oceanic is common among the traders in port cities, as well.
Oceanic people are very varied and seem exotic to each shore they land upon. They are usually easily identified by their bright colored clothes. (…)
In a land constantly torn asunder by war, peasants of the Kinglands can worry about little more than surviving each day. Those sworn to a banner must rise to defend their kingdom when necessary however, which is quite often. Often times Lords will allow some able bodied soldiers to stay behind in times of war knowing that the village must survive to be able to field soldiers for the next war, likely around the corner.
With 4 kings who all wish to claim rulership over the whole area, political tensions in the region are always tight. At any time the smallest slight can set off a domino reaction leading to war again.
The Dathrien Empire is a known and feared throughout the world. Your average imperial citizen is used to a life of living in fear and oppression, however the ruling class dwells in decadence. On the surface Darion commands the Empires legions, but most know this to be a ruse. The true power behind the throne is the dragon Radix and his pet mages that control Avinter. All nations that are not already subjugated to the Empire fear the day they choose to change that situation – they fear their drake riding mages and commanders, their monsters, golems, and undead warriors, and their soldiers who fight on threat of their families lives.
These same nations must also fear another empire – the Valais empire is just across the Three Kings Sea.
Further to the south of the area are several Jungle Islands. While they house few permanent residents, they are the site of many a forgotten ruin. Many adventuring parties have been lost trying to delve their secrets.
While within the borders of the empire, Dragonkin are especially feared as the enforcers of Radix, or the mentors of Mages. Reaction penalties and bonuses for them are increased here.
Outside the borders of the Empire, the fear or respect they carry is changed to outright hatred. Unless one has done some outstanding deeds to distance himself from his clan, he is likely to be attacked on sight, so long as the citizens feel it will escape Radix’s notice.
Those of the midlands seem to always be bracing themselves, fearing the inevitable attack from the Kinglands or the Emperium.
The nomads and the city dwellers of the Plainslands come into contact often enough to share one culture, despite the different living styles (…)
The Sky People have a strict caste based culture. As a people, they are haughty and arrogant. They believe that they are better than the other races, and blame them for the great winter. They seek to keep magic out of the other race’s hands to prevent it from happening again.
Nejailans must further specialize their cultural familiarity by the caste they hail from. There are the following castes:
If you are not a native Nejailan, you must choose “Uncasted”. You are at a -1 to social interactions with a member of a different caste.
You must further specialize this choice by noting the tribe that you hail from. You are at a -1 to social interactions from any tribe you are unfamiliar with. The nation of Thrumnaash counts as one tribe.
Angran is the culture of the Giants. Most who lived in or very near their mountain homes will be familiar with this culture.
Not bound to a specific location, Aikana is the culture of the Yamabushi and those who’ve built communities around them. Their religion follows a lot of the same principles as the Way of Peace, but with a higher focus on introspection and very little attention paid to the Creators or the Destroyers themselves.
Each Dragon clan has its own unique cultural aspects, as well. If you hail from a dragon clan in a region, set your native culture to that region and notate your clan after; IE: Stormlander (Hraximathicus)
These are the languages currently used.
Gildean is spoken throughout the world much like English is today. It is not a free language, however, unless it is listed as so for your region or country. Even in regions where it is not the primary language, many locations may be named after it.
|Real Life:||This language is based on English, using fantasy naming conventions.|
|Statistics:||If you speak Gildean at Accented or better, you get Orcish at Broken and Ancient Common at Broken for free.|
The language rediscovered by the Caelimic Order in the ruins of their once-great cities.
|Real Life:||Based on Ancient Celitc languages and Irish|
|Real Life:||Based on Ancient Greek|
|Real Life:||Based on Game of Thrones’s Dothraki|
Spoken all over the Kinglands, as most were at some point in the control of Romalla
|Real Life:||Based on Latin|
|Real Life:||Based on Nordic languages|
|Real Life:||Based on African languages|
The Sky People’s own, ancient, language.
|Real Life:||Based on the Starcraft’s Khalani|
The language of the Dragons and their Kin.
|Real Life:||Based on the Elder Scrolls dragon language and alphabet.|
Uses Gildean looking characters, but as the Orcs didn’t know how to read, they use different pronunciation/spelling etc.
|Real Life:||Based on Warcraft’s Orcish|
|Statistics:||If you speak Orcish at Accented or better, you get Gildean at Broken for free.|
|Real Life:||Based on Asian languages|
Arcanic is the language of Mages – most magical tomes will be written in this language, and even those that are not will reference Arcanic terms, making them difficult for anyone who does not speak it to read.
|Real Life:||Uses the Falmer alphabet of The Elder Scrolls.|
|Statistics:||If you speak Arcanic at Accented or better, you get Ancient Arcanic at Broken for free. You are at a -1 to all spells if you speak at accented, -1 to all Thaumotology rolls if you write at Accented. These penalties increase to -3 for Broken.|
These languages have not been used since before the Great Winter. It would be inappropriate for anybody but a very well studied scholar to have knowledge of these languages beyond the free levels.
|Statistics:||Broken comprehension is free if you know Modern Arcanic at Accented or better.|
|Statistics:||Broken comprehension is free if you know Gildean at Accented or better.|