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Does anyone remember the Dawnforge Campaign for 3E by FFG? It was based in a young world just coming into its golden age, and nothing has been set in stone yet. As you gain levels you add traits and talents to your character, eventually choosing racial abilities. Once you get to a high enough level( 15 or 20, can't quite remember), you actually become the template of your race. It was a fantastic idea, I wish they made more than 3 books for it.

 

Hadn't heard of that. Seems like a fun idea, and it's actually pretty similar to how I'm building my own world...

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2. The Emporium of Fine Goods and Antiquities: Run by an amiable little man called "Mouse," the Emporium is the ONLY magic shop on any given world. The items are for sale by contract only. Usually for one or more undefined "favors." And sometimes functions more as a Bazaar of the Bizarre than a shop of functional magic items. (50/50 chance of either, on any given opening of the door.) Unbeknownst to most, "Mouse" is actually an incarnation of Ningauble of the Seven Eyes. And where HE manifests, Sheelba of the Eyeless Face isn't far behind.

I think we've just been Leibered.

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Fun stuff.

 

In my home brew that has been around in various iterations for 20+ years or so there are some differences.

 

Dark elves are more of a social class or a stigma. There are subterranean races, but there aren't "Drow." Dark elves are either the children of other dark elves, or they are elves who have become outcast because of something they did. All Half Elves are dark elves, because half breed. The quickest way to become a dark elf is to marry or interbreed with non-elves, or to do something "dishonorable." Also the elves on my world are generally xenophobic racial purist jerks. Obviously this doesn't apply to every one of them, and PCs are however they want to be, but overall the Elves consider themselves better than every other race, and they generally lie to and manipulate everyone else as they see fit. They are in fact well known for manipulating all of the "younger" races into fighting their wars and battles for them. Lying to or stealing from other races is considered completely appropriate, but lying to or stealing from another elf is verboten.

 

Dragons are rare creatures. Such that encountering a dragon is a momentous and life changing experience (if you survive it).

 

Death Knights/Grave Knights/Skeletal Knights on my world are much akin to Lichs, except that they use a specially prepared runic weapon as their phylactery. They are also so stupidly uber powerful that they are regarded by most people as myths or legend. More so than dragons. They are not inherently evil, but they are usually so old and powerful that their moral compass no longer points to north as it were.

 

Goblins, orcs, hobgoblins, and bugbears are all basically the same race. Varying power levels though. A bugbear would just be a name for a particularly fierce and powerful goblin or orc. Hobgoblin describes goblins who are more militant and organized. I may think of more later.

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These are all so interesting!

 

Orcs are not always evil, but invariably rather surly, and very seldom of good alignment; the best you can usually hope for is neutral.

 

 

Orcs in my game are kind of lost. Not physically. They're right over there. But they don't know what to do. A few hundred years ago a huge swath of them, led by some of their greatest warriors, went and killed their gods, basically. They were a trio of powerful Demon Princes, actually, but that's all kind of a matter of semantics, at least to the orcs. While this is somewhat similar to the lore of Warcraft, my orcs don't have a shamanistic tradition to fall back on now that they're free of fiendish control. They had, up until then, always just been bloodthirsty raiders who would terrify everyone in their nearby vicinity. Many of them still are because they don't know what else to do. But there are some that are trying to figure out a better way to live.

 

My orcs started out as first edition Monster Manual player fodder, and evolved to keep things interesting. They aren't evil, necessarily, but tend to have a "survival of the fittest" attitude, and will often kick your booty and take your stuff if they think they can, and think they're doing you a favor for not killing you. That's "Neutral" for an orc. They can often be parleyed with, and will often honor truces, particularly if they have anything to gain from it.

 

...and then, some will just try to kill you, because Orcs. They tend to be rather clever, tactically, simply due to having their butts kicked so often by human and dwarven armies.

 

I completely abandoned my goblins for the much more entertaining and interesting Pathfinder versions. Plus, they come in Bones, now.

 

Lizardmen are entirely based on the local ecology. In times of plenty, they will buy metals and sell you meat, jerky, pickled eggs, and hides. In times of no plenty, they will attempt to eat you.

 

I did not much care for bugbears until the Pathfinder versions came along. Spooky serial killers with three hit dice and a gleeful desire to cause terror. And they travel in packs!

 

Also like the Pathfinder ogres. D&D ogres are frankly vanilla, and once you reach a certain level, they aren't much to be feared. "Deliverance Redneck Ogres," on the other hand...

 

Magic items can be purchased in any place adventurers frequent, simply because they will often get hocked. However, they will almost always be of the variety of item that you'd hock, instead of hanging onto. Or, ghod help us, of the malfunctioning variety. 

 

 

2. The Emporium of Fine Goods and Antiquities: Run by an amiable little man called "Mouse," the Emporium is the ONLY magic shop on any given world. The items are for sale by contract only. Usually for one or more undefined "favors." And sometimes functions more as a Bazaar of the Bizarre than a shop of functional magic items. (50/50 chance of either, on any given opening of the door.) Unbeknownst to most, "Mouse" is actually an incarnation of Ningauble of the Seven Eyes. And where HE manifests, Sheelba of the Eyeless Face isn't far behind.

 

I very much like this concept, and may steal it. However, where you find Ningauble and/or Sheelba... can the Devourers be far behind? If we're talking about mobile shops that sell magic stuff....

 

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Probably the main consistency in my fantasy worlds (at least when I run D&D) is that I muddy the waters a lot with respect to good guys, bad guys, alignments, and so on.  I like the Pathfinder take on Detect Evil, where you don't even get a reading if the person has 4 or less HD (unless they're a cleric, undead, or outsider) and only a "faint" reading if they're up to 10 HD.  Very few races or cultures are assumed to be evil enough to justify "kill on sight" status, so metropolitan areas will tend to have very diverse populations with a lot of people that would be "monsters" in more traditional games.  

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Probably the main consistency in my fantasy worlds (at least when I run D&D) is that I muddy the waters a lot with respect to good guys, bad guys, alignments, and so on.  I like the Pathfinder take on Detect Evil, where you don't even get a reading if the person has 4 or less HD (unless they're a cleric, undead, or outsider) and only a "faint" reading if they're up to 10 HD.  Very few races or cultures are assumed to be evil enough to justify "kill on sight" status, so metropolitan areas will tend to have very diverse populations with a lot of people that would be "monsters" in more traditional games.  

 

This is why I like 5E's version of Detect Evil. It simply doesn't work on people at all. You can sense if there are fiends or undead nearby, or if there is a place that has been actively defiled, but a cleric can't look at a group of people and cast Detect Evil to see who the serial killer is, for example.

 

I also now have a staple bar that a player made up on a whim - Bob's Fighting Bar. In my last game (a 4E game), the players had some downtime so they went to a tavern. Some other players went elsewhere and came to collect everyone. One PC was in a bar fight and was told to stop. Another player said, "well, we are in Bob's Fighting Bar, so..."  It stuck. The players eventually opened up their own Bob's Fighting Bar and made a chain of it. While my current game's world is in no way connected to that one, they have now met a bartender who's name is Robert. His friends call him Bob. He often has bruised knuckles and a split lip. 

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These are all so interesting!

 

Orcs are not always evil, but invariably rather surly, and very seldom of good alignment; the best you can usually hope for is neutral.

 

 

Orcs in my game are kind of lost. Not physically. They're right over there. But they don't know what to do. A few hundred years ago a huge swath of them, led by some of their greatest warriors, went and killed their gods, basically. They were a trio of powerful Demon Princes, actually, but that's all kind of a matter of semantics, at least to the orcs. While this is somewhat similar to the lore of Warcraft, my orcs don't have a shamanistic tradition to fall back on now that they're free of fiendish control. They had, up until then, always just been bloodthirsty raiders who would terrify everyone in their nearby vicinity. Many of them still are because they don't know what else to do. But there are some that are trying to figure out a better way to live.

 

My orcs started out as first edition Monster Manual player fodder, and evolved to keep things interesting. They aren't evil, necessarily, but tend to have a "survival of the fittest" attitude, and will often kick your booty and take your stuff if they think they can, and think they're doing you a favor for not killing you. That's "Neutral" for an orc. They can often be parleyed with, and will often honor truces, particularly if they have anything to gain from it.

 

...and then, some will just try to kill you, because Orcs. They tend to be rather clever, tactically, simply due to having their butts kicked so often by human and dwarven armies.

 

I completely abandoned my goblins for the much more entertaining and interesting Pathfinder versions. Plus, they come in Bones, now.

 

Lizardmen are entirely based on the local ecology. In times of plenty, they will buy metals and sell you meat, jerky, pickled eggs, and hides. In times of no plenty, they will attempt to eat you.

 

I did not much care for bugbears until the Pathfinder versions came along. Spooky serial killers with three hit dice and a gleeful desire to cause terror. And they travel in packs!

 

Also like the Pathfinder ogres. D&D ogres are frankly vanilla, and once you reach a certain level, they aren't much to be feared. "Deliverance Redneck Ogres," on the other hand...

 

Magic items can be purchased in any place adventurers frequent, simply because they will often get hocked. However, they will almost always be of the variety of item that you'd hock, instead of hanging onto. Or, ghod help us, of the malfunctioning variety. 

 

 

2. The Emporium of Fine Goods and Antiquities: Run by an amiable little man called "Mouse," the Emporium is the ONLY magic shop on any given world. The items are for sale by contract only. Usually for one or more undefined "favors." And sometimes functions more as a Bazaar of the Bizarre than a shop of functional magic items. (50/50 chance of either, on any given opening of the door.) Unbeknownst to most, "Mouse" is actually an incarnation of Ningauble of the Seven Eyes. And where HE manifests, Sheelba of the Eyeless Face isn't far behind.

 

I very much like this concept, and may steal it. However, where you find Ningauble and/or Sheelba... can the Devourers be far behind? If we're talking about mobile shops that sell magic stuff....

 

 

The goblins/orcs on my world are also not necessarily evil, but they really aren't generally nice. They even have their own major...ish city called Trough. They do however have a massive mad on against the elves, because my elves are jerks, and the Orcs got screwed over by them one too many times.

 

Oh, and Trolls. Trolls are master craftsman on my world, albeit master craftsman who are not above eating all other races, so you really don't want to forfeit on what you owe them. They make arguably the best weapons, armor, and equipment you can find. If you can get them to agree to make it, and since they make amazing armaments you want to think twice about attacking them for their crafts. They are also separated into swamp, forest, and stone trolls ecologically.

 

There are two places that show up from time to time. The first is Apostle Paul's Limbotic Cantina. A bar in, you guessed it, Limbo from which if you have the funds you can access pretty much anywhere else. You can also buy or sell or hire just about anything, if you have enough money. However the only known portal to Paul's involved traveling through a cave that opened up to a field in Iowa, crossing a two lane blacktop road, and then entering the trunk of a rusted out Studebaker is no longer accessible. 

 

The second place is Mad Michael M's Mystical Mythical Mercantile. Purveyor of fine items. Michael's moves around, but his business partner and head of sales Achmed can usually be found in Waymoot. They will sell you just about anything you can think of, for prices ranging from exorbitant to unfathomably high. They also buy just about anything, paying from next to nothing to borderline theft. It's a good place to unload found treasure, and they occasionally hire people to find specific items.

 

Magic on my world is not overly abundant, and anything with a greater than +1 bonus, particularly items with specialty enchantments, are generally named and/or storied.

 

However, given the nature of my world and its penchant for collecting lost or forgotten things there are plenty of opportunities to explore and collect items and treasure. Hence adventure. Yay!

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I've had several home-brew campaign settings..

 

I created Aldwin with the simple question in mind, what would it be like to live on a world with two suns?  Not in a close Binary, but one where the companion was only seen at night.  It was from this though that I created this setting.

 

Aldwin was a setting with two rival pantheons, The Powers of Light, who were descended from the Day Sun, and the Powers of Darkness, who were the descendants of the Night Sun.  Both Pantheons were neither wholly good or bad.  They were divided against each other over the simple question: Which is more important family or society?  (In hind sight this division was somewhat too vague for my players)  When the two pantheons met, at first they were pleased, but their relationship quickly dissolved into open war fair. In the end neither side won, and both pantheons were greatly reduced in size.

 

The Powers of Light stood for aspects of civilisation, or physical aspects of the world.  They held that civilisation was paramount, and worked with each other as one.  This meant they were fairly cohesive, but most of them were inflexible, and slow to adapt.

 

The Dark Powers stood for the immaterial, or the elements.  The Dark Powers on the other hand believed family was of far greater importance.The Dark Powers were individually stronger, but less prone to work together. 

 

The world orbited a bright star (the Day Sun), with a much dimmer companion(the night Sun).  While the Day Sun produced daylight, the Night Sun brought warmth.  Summer occurred when the Night Sun was closest, and winter occurred, when it was no longer visible. 

 

Magical items were rare.  While items with single, or few uses were common, permanent magical items were titled, and their ownership could only be passed on to descendants of the original owner. This led to some fun situation, like the players being called back to a neighbouring country to return a magical sword they 'Stole', or a player selling his character's soul for a an enchanted dagger.  Fun times.

Edited by ChaoticBlues
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At the height of the AD&D 2e Planes Of Just About Anything craze, a friend and I started work on a world that made Limbo look like Mechanus. The Demiplane of Insanity would've featured a ruler who, due to temporal effects that have nothing to do with the fact he can't be arsed to pay attention to you, is always out to lunch when you try to meet him, lost creatures like the were-am-I and more broken fourth walls than... uh... something wih a lot of broken fourth walls, for sure.

 

Perhaps for the better, that never really got off the ground.

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many decades ago, I did a modified world of greyhawk campaign where I took some inspiration from dragonlance and there was no magic functional at the beginning of the campaign.  one of the early quests was to bring magic back to the world.

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At the height of the AD&D 2e Planes Of Just About Anything craze, a friend and I started work on a world that made Limbo look like Mechanus. The Demiplane of Insanity would've featured a ruler who, due to temporal effects that have nothing to do with the fact he can't be arsed to pay attention to you, is always out to lunch when you try to meet him, lost creatures like the were-am-I and more broken fourth walls than... uh... something wih a lot of broken fourth walls, for sure.

 

Perhaps for the better, that never really got off the ground.

So, the Demiplane of Deadpool, then?
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I used the Forgotten Realms for many many years and had a few recurring things going on.

When the groups first started NO ONE played a cleric! Needless to say, this could cause a lot of down time while these folks healed up over time...

So I came up with my own little Deus et Machinae, Good & Times!

Kirin beer was really pushing their product at the time, the radio was full of commercials. One was,'Where Kirin goes, Good Times Follow'.

Now if you have ever seen Kirin beer, the label actually has a Kirin on it.

Ral Partha had just released the AD&D Kirin mini, so I painted it up like the label.

SO, when ever the party was REALLY in trouble with Hit points, and it wasn't all their fault for doing something stupid, Good and Times would show up.

Good was the Kirin, he did all the talking, Times was the human appearing mute rider who passed out beer to one and all. The beer was basically a potion of Heal, Cure Light / Moderate, etc. wounds, depending on how the wounds were received.

Healing potions in my worlds were always Sky Blue. Don't remember why...

At one point we all sat around and brain stormed color, taste, scent etc of EVERY potion! Why we decided they were standardized.... Only the DM had the master list. Everyone else kept their own notes on what was what, if they were smart...

People that got hit were given their damage in a note. This leads to people were not allowed to say how many hit points they were down. I'm hurt, hurt bad, dying etc was the only was they could talk about it. Healing spells failed on those that erred, until nobody erred anymore.

 

I am sure there were more idiosyncracies as well...

George

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So, the Demiplane of Deadpool, then?

Nah, that was before Deadpool became a really big thing. He was like a freshly introduced supporting cast guy back then.

 

More like the Demiplane of 80s She-Hulk.

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My in-development campaign world has a different take on the dwarf archetype. The stoneborn are an asexual humanoid race that are literally carved from the stone around a life-granting soulstone. When it comes time for a stoneborn to carve a child, they feel an instinctive pull towards the location of a specific soulstone. These can occasionally be far from where they live, resulting in a sort of childbearing pilgrimage. Mechanically, they share many features with dwarves (resilient, slow for their size) but culturally are completely different.

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Hmm... Where to begin...

Well, let's see. The entire world has been destroyed, and the formerly 20th century level technology was lost. Everyone's living on enormous floating islands in the Astral Plane, each inhabited by a local god or pantheon. The greater and more far-reaching gods are locked in an eternal civil war, largely centered around whether or not arcane magic should be allowed to persist.

Dwarves are a bunch of greed-motivated Medieval Russian-esque miniature frost giants. Elves are aloof and detached men of the wilds akin to Celtic druids. Gnolls are another major player, and they're semi-Mongolian in nature, with one crucial difference. In the winter, all the gnoll tribes band together into three Gnoll holds, who then participate in a very organized war in order to gain social standing and resources.

 

As the gods themselves are very important, here are the major ones:

Tiamat - Standard D&D, the goddess of greed and evil dragons, but mostly dragons. Staunch supporter of arcane magic. Quote - Now and forever, you and all your possessions are mine. Do not fail me. I do not like owning imperfections.

Bahamut - Again, standard D&D. The god of paladins and good dragons, but mostly paladins. Also supports arcane magic. Quote - Harsh, perhaps. But that all that is fair is harsh as well.

Sezir - Evil snake deity. God of cannibalism, serial killers and reptilian races. Wants to rebuild the old world and destroy all non-primal magic. Quote -Devour you all! That's what it takes! That's what it needs! That'sss what will heeallll it!

Quetzalcoatl - Good snake deity. God of plants, winged serpents and life. Views arcane magic as dangerous. Quote - The world was broken, and now it shall be healed. So goes the cycle.

D'faana - Goddess of dreams and the stars. Neutral on the arcane magic debate, largely focused on a greater issue (Destroyer). Quote - Do not fear, children, for in this world, we are eternal.

The Destroyer - God of nihilism, destruction and the void. Also neutral on the debate, preferring instead to systematically destroy the universe. Quote - Thuna, thhuftg'an ur sha gugt, ang gua un 'aun agaunts na!

 

Now for the slightly sillier ones:

Orcus - God of undead, cruelty and slaughter. Behaves as if he's a cartoon supervillian. Quote - You think you are more evil than Orcus Tenebrous Thanatos?!!?? I will destroy everything you could have ever possibly loved!!!!!

The Mad Hatter - God of time, insanity and illogicality. A complete narcissist, whose mind runs on a twisted form of broken logic. Quote - Goodbye! I would wish you luck, but, to be honest, I don't really care THAT much!

God Emperor Napolionus - An embellished story of a man who became a god, but died trying to slay the frost giants of Rhuushya. His ghost became a god because of people worshiping him. Quote - <Insert any Napoleon quote here>.

 

That's about everything. Sorry for the long post.

Edited by Oudynfury
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