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Mutants & Masterminds: Struggles of Iannin - The Rebirth of Iannin


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Tal & Len - First Epoch

The Twin Suns rose up over the world of Iannin, gracing the planet with their Light once more, and took notice of the good within.

'This pleases us. We would yet have someone to bask in our light as we journey. We would have them settle on the tall Flatlands of the world, so that they might be closer to us. It pleases us to call them the Fen'

Click to reveal.. (Explain!)
Tal & Len create a race! These are an aboriginal, olive-skinned elven race that is tribal in nature, territories marked and divided by plateaus, mesas and canyons. They run everywhere and have developed an uncanny ability to jump long distances and a mountain goat like agility. Tribes are quickly differentiated by tattoos and the use of different color inks derived from the soil and plant life. There is very little dispute between tribes except in years of drought or when food supply is low. Disagreements, (of an inter-tribal origin) are usually mediated by a tribunal of the chiefs involved and a number of chiefs outside of the dispute, always numbering to an odd amount.
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Konsea - First Epoch

Konsea looked upon the world and knew she would need a peoples to feed her. In her desire, she created the vicious Takrok and set them in the mountains that bisect the Eastern Continent.

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The Takrok are a violent race of warrior-barbarians. Their fantasy equivalent is similar to a minotaur though with a mountain goat’s head instead of a bull’s. They are bipedal with extreme gender dimorphism – the males are notably bigger and stronger than the females. They live in small tribes that wage fierce war upon each other and other peoples. Their culture is highly territorial, with each tribe setting out strict boundaries that are regularly patrolled and maintained. Kills in battle are celebrated with beads – called kill-marks – woven into their beards. Though women are not allowed to fight in wars, if they kill an attacking enemy, then they are given a kill-mark to weave into their hair. At this time, their tech level is primitive.

The males are upwards of nine feet and over six hundred pounds on average; the females rarely surpass six feet and two hundred. Both sexes are strong. They are covered in a heavy wool; their usual color is white with brown hooves and eyes.


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Azath - First Epoch

Azath looked upon Iannin and without the First Race, found it to be a crucible without purpose, none to excise their will upon it, to thrive against all that could be thrown at them. And so, Azath went to his Celestial Anvil, and with his hand of fire and his hand of ice, he forged and tempered his first attempt at a mortal race. And from the mountains, with bones the bones of mountains, blood the ever flowing magma below, and skin the ice ever frozen above, strode forth the Jötnar.

Click to reveal.. (Explain!)
The Jötnar - Effectively Giants, fifteen tall and more. Various sub-species - notably Frost, Fire, and Stone/Mountain - are based on the various ratios Azath used in their creation. Storm Giants are the greatest and mightiest, the ratios perfectly balanced.

The Jötnar are a solitary, long-lived but slow breeding race. They live in Holds of one to five individuals, very rarely more, and each Hold claims a vast territory. Physically very powerful, a rare few know a sort of rune-magic, despite that their other crafting skills are rather rudimentary. They appear across the face of Iannin, where ever there are mountains or volcanoes.

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Wulkyn - First Epoch

Wulkyn looked upon the land and saw that the barbaric life his brothers and sisters had created were uneducated and uncivilized. Seeing that these beings were not yet ready for his teachings he reached out his hand and extended his will to Iannin, to the isle that lay in a lake that was a ring. Wulkyn drew from the ground crystals which resonated with the mana that now flowed across Iannin, unseen, and thus far unfelt by the mortals. He drew these crystals from the very earth and formed them into spires and arches, and created a complex site that would capture, store, and focus the mana on this isle in time with the rising of the suns and moons, and the changing of the seasons.

Click to reveal.. (Explain!)
Wulkyn creates a Stonehenge like site on the meteor Isle that acts as a celestial calendar and also a mana/magical focus. The material of the structures is a quartz like crystal that glows from within with magical energy.
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Kaer - First Epoch

The enigmatic Kaer sneered at the creations of the so-called 'gods' from his throne.

'Soon, their ilk will spread like a plague upon this world, taking what is not theirs. I will not have this.'

Kaer stood up and kicked off a leg of his throne, the clawed root tumbling and rolling and reforming into the balled form of a pure black imp-like creature, its skin roiling with a volatile, oily sheen that was sickening to gaze upon.

It cowered and hunched in on itself as Kaer approached and picked it up by its head. He started by ripping out the immortality of its soul, then moved on, widening its body and thickening it to a twisted version of the once grand form it held millennia ago. The screams of the form went from a high pitched, fiendish scream to that of a guttural bass that cried for relief.

Not yet done, Kaer breathed over it with the insatiable desire and greed that helped define him and then drop kicked it up through the layers of the divine, the form shredding itself as it burst through the veils and finally gurgled and bubbled its way to the surface of the Mire.

The Murg blinked against the light of the Twins and immediately dove back into the mud, and yet they were still overcome with joy, for they were free of Kaer.

Click to reveal.. (Explain!)
And so the Muck Dwarves came into being. They are light sensitive, but prefer to be in the light and get around their handicap by caking themselves in mud throughout the day and wearing goggles formed of finely cut gems that they find in the swamp. They have an affinity for finding these gems and have perfected filtration techniques to pull elements from the rich soils of the mud. Their skin, is dark, nearly black, along with their eyes. They rarely stand taller than 3 feet. They group by clan, but these clans are only decided by veins or deposits and fluctuate and change as often as the Mire.
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Quaress - First Epoch

Quaress traveled the length and breadth of Iannin, passing as she pleased, bargaining and flirting with the Fey who peeked in from her Realm, only a step sideways from the land under the light of Tal and Len. One day, she came upon a silvery waterfall, the susurration of its waters breaking the surface of the lake the only sound breaking the silence.

She parted the glittering veil, finding hidden behind it a cave, dark and wet, walls veined with dark quartz. Upon a bier of crushed quartz, lay a nymph, slender and unearthly despite her greyish pallor and sunken features. From her very flesh, sprang fungi, luminescent caps of vivid green. The hand of Siponak was in this.

Quaress plucked them free and adorned her hair with a wreath of emerald death, ever changing eyes growing hard. Siponak may claim all who pass from the mortal coil, but she would see that for the few with the luck and skill to achieve it, The Reaper would have to strive hard for his due.

Quaress left the cave of dark quartz and ascended the heights of the waterfall to see what she could see. Upon the verge, she found the perfect volunteer for her trick. Seven great oaks surrounded their stunted kin growing on the crumbling edge, their overreaching canopies turning it's bark dark and leaves grey from lack of sun and sustenance.

Quaress turned her beautiful face up the twisted oak and breathed... And as beauty was hers to bestow upon her whim, the oak blossomed and grew straight. Cracked bark became as smooth and warm as the finest sable, and like dark, vivid flames, new growth sprouted from its spreading branches, boughs heavy with a fruit all its own.

And thus was born the immortal Amaranth Oak, with fruit that could stave off Siponak himself... if it did not call him closer.

Click to reveal.. (Explain!)
The Amaranth Oak is a unique tree, extremely rare, no more than what can be counted on one hand thought to exist. Its bark and wood is as dark and glossy as the finest ebony and its foliage is a rich purple-red, always in bloom, regardless of the season or climate. It is immune to all diseases and blights, age only ever causes its foliage to grow more vibrant, it has no need for sunlight or other nutrients, and damage to it is repaired with uncanny swiftness.

The fruit is similar to a mix between an apple and a pomegranate, more purple than red, incredibly delicious and with an almost intoxicating scent. Unfortunately, the fruit is a deadly poison, causing those who eat it to suffer a wasting disease which prevents them from healing or gaining sustenance from nearly all sources. However, properly prepared, the fruit can make a potent curative drought, that can cure any disease or poison, and some whisper, can bring the dead back to life as well.

The Amaranth Oak can only be propagated by the seeds of the Immortality Fruit. The seeds of the fruit pass entirely through the body unharmed and only the rarest of circumstances will cause a seed to sprout. The Amaranth Oaks are rare enough that determining the necessary circumstances has yet been possible.

And finally, during each Coil (Century), the Amaranth Oak bears a special fruit. Partaking of its entire flesh and husk will grant eternal youth, freedom from all diseases and poisons, and the ability to heal from any wound with great swiftness. Of course, the Immortality Fruit looks exactly like the regular, poisonous fruit. [immunity 3 (Age, Disease, Poison; Innate) and Regeneration 5 (Persistent; Innate)]

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Beltok - First Epoch

The Maker looked upon what Wulkyn had created. He, too, felt that there were none who matched His vision of a true race. Yes, the rough savages that inhabited Iannin were making and creating things, but so much of what they did was from necessity, not the desire to create. And so Beltok sought to Make those who would comprehend the higher things in life.

Taking the same kind of crystals that Wulkyn had used, Beltok shaped and reshaped, striving to create the ultimate innovators. He made them tall and many-limbed, the better for them create and construct. He gave them great intellects and a mighty curiosity.

Then, as their very flesh resonated with the harmonics of Wulkyn’s inspiring creation, Beltok took them and put them on the eastern-most islands of the Archapeligos, to better ensure that they would need to formulate and innovate and create in order to find the place that called to them.

Click to reveal.. (Explain!)
The A'oughight are a tall people, averaging seven feet in height. Despite this stature, they are considered frail as a race as they are composed of crystal. Even their bodily fluids are a liquid crystal which rapidly congeals into faceted form in the open air. They have four arms and their fingers are tentacles instead of more-standard digits. They have no hair on their bodies, but can coax their exteriors to grow into beautiful shapes and designs. Their usual colors are pastels of many different shades and hues. They are quite intelligent and adapt to their environment rapidly, achieving much despite their physical drawbacks.

As a people, they abhor violence. They are, at their core, explorers and seek to learn many of the mysteries of their world. Magic is not uncommon; their very bodies were once soaked in the ley lines of Iannin and they feel physical pleasure when the forces of magic surge through them. This feeling can be so potent that it causes addiction.

There are three genders among them: the male and female and a third, the carrier. Carriers give up their lives to carry and raise the children of their male and female, so that those two may focus on their studies. Males and females are visually similar, but the carriers often mistaken for females because they have nursing breasts.


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Ankassar - First Epoch

The mighty Dragon that was Ankassar gazed upon Iannin watching the unravelling chaos and disorder with great contempt. It was time to ensure that order and justice would be established in this earliest of ages.

Knowing that culture was the bastion of order and chaos he created the Balor, a noble race of tall and graceful elven-like humanoids. The hostile environment of the center Waste Land was their place of origin forcing them to survive under the harshest of conditions Iannin possessed.

Click to reveal.. (Explain!)
The Balor average 6 and a half feet in height (female around 6 feet) and are of athletic and graceful built. Their skin tone ranges from alabaster to ivory with haircolors of all ranges although the royal caste almost exclusively has white hair. Balor offspring always come in twos - male and female. The siblings are tightly connected and share a mystical bond. The Balor developed a high culture through Ankassar's boon and zealous endeavor discovering many secrets of civilization long before the first tribes of the other gods started to form settlements. This sense of superiority reflects in their arrogant nature and pride.

The Balor society created a complicated caste system which ensures that only the best suited for a certain task are selected. Siblings always follow two different paths, one choosing the higher arts of magic, study or faith, the other choosing the path of the warrior, fighter and defender.

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Zahan-Thaya - First Epoch

The Goddess of Life watched her fellow Gods with great interest and curiosity. Their creations were splendid and fantastic but they were too specific, too self centered for her taste. Iannin needed a versatile and virile people who faithfully would serve the land and thus life. Reaching deep within her she sowed the seed of her first servants, the Zahan-Thayim and generously spread it over all Iannin.

Click to reveal.. (Explain!)
The Zahan-Thayim are basically your standard humans of all colors and ethnical diversity. They revere Zahan-Thaya as her creator but perceive her as an aspect of all „basic“ elements „Fire, Water, Air, Earth“. The Zahan-Thayim organise themselves in guilds/houses – each representing an elemental aspect and thus a base philosophy of their take on live. Ankassar (Fire), Deminor (Water), Beiolyn (Air) and Charis (Earth). A Zahan-Thayim’s live is strongly determined by the guild/house he was born into.

They settle everywhere and have no preferred climate. The Zahan-Thayim adapt to every climate that is not entirely hostile to live.

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Chaos - First Epoch

Chaos observed the reemergence of the gods upon Iannin and sneered. Flippant and self-gratifying as the god's were, soon their attention moved away from their recent creations and moved on, ever seeking to fulfill themselves.

The first struck were the Fen, a particularly nasty drought during the time of the Twin's reign led to much disagreement and eventually the exiling of an entire clan's worth of people. They left the Flatlands and crossed the Great River, moving into the forests beyond, and so became the A'fen, the Not Fen.

Meanwhile, the Takrok, having been visited by very convincing emissaries of Zahan-Thaya, decided to lay down their weapons. They took to the worship of the Life Goddess with the same fervor they took everything else and dedicated themselves wholly to self-enlightenment and the acceptance of inner peace.

The Balor, suffering under the Twins' intensity became sensitive to their light. Within generations, they were hardly able to go out in the day without shielding their eyes and by the end of the first Epoch, that had become a nearly nocturnal people, preferring the moonlight features of the Blasted Lands to that of the blazing fury of Tal & Len.

A deep philosophical divide caused a civil war amongst the otherwise peaceful A'oughight, the arrival of the Za'Thayim (humans) on their shores split the people nearly down the middle. Half wished to accept and speak with these new found brethren. The other half, fearing the worst, desired nothing more than to be rid of them in any way possible. The result was a sundering of the A'oughight into two peoples.

The swamp gurgled and frothed, the volcano never ceasing its activity, and a peak formed at its center, visible from nearly the breadth of the continent. The Murg called it Mount Sorrow, in honor of the large city that was buried during its eruption.

The Zahan-Thayim, (Za'thayim, Zharallim, Z'Thayan and many other names they called themselves) expanded with fervor, taking their passion of life to the corners of the world, but some corners were found to be occupied and not welcoming. The Jotnar were put off by the rapid activity of the small creatures and war soon broke out as the humans encroached. The humans were no match for the giants, and soon found their numbers broken and hobbled by the battles. The Jotnar also, found themselves retreating back into the fold of the mountains from which they were born, the human's unwavering attempt pushing them farther and farther back. Just as the battle seemed to have stalemated across the world of Iannin, a disease broke out, killing nearly every human survivor. Only 1 in 10 of the height of the human population remained and the Jotnar now brooded in the mountains. Thus ended The Sky Edge Wars.

Click to reveal.. (Explain!)
Fen had a splinter clan that took 10%

Takrok became peaceful and faith bent.

Jotnar moved.

Murg got a landscape change, but I made it affect them.

A'oughight had a civil war.

Balor gained a quirk.

Humans lost 90% of their population.

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Siponak - Second Epoch

Siponak looked up to the world from his home in the spirit realm, his work had been great, his kingdom now swelled with the fragile and ephemeral souls of mortals, but still he was restless. "There is more that could be done, I need living worshipers."

He went to the World and found those people who most revered their dead, those who most respected that life was finite and that death came to all. Upon the volcanic savanna of the Isle of Rakonu he found those people, a splinter of the Thayim race created by his wife. There they struggled, their numbers reduced by famine and disease, and living in the shadow of the mountain of fire they feared death at all times.

Siponak came to the in his guise of the Reaper, clad in black peasant garb, his body of bone appearing fragile but limned with power. He taught them of magic, and of necromancy. He gave them the power over the dead, and the ability to, with proper sacrifice, raise the dead once more into the living world. The people of Rakonu named themselves the Anupu, the Lords of the Dead, and paid homage to Siponak. They raised their dead as servants to till fields and hunt beasts, the mummified and preserved their greatest warriors, leaders, and priests and learned to bring them back with even greater power.

As Siponak returned from Iannin to retire he was approached by Wulkyn. "Cousin, I have need of you, I wish to place followers upon the Isle of Ignum known for its trees with leaves like flame, but it is infested by the dying race of Thayim. Cleanse them for me and I will return the favor in the future." Siponak agreed and stretched forth his scythe and in one season the last of the Zahan-Thayim upon Ignum were dead and the isle was ready for Wulkyn's work.

Click to reveal.. (Explain!)

Reaction move is to slay the rest of the humans on the fire forest island Ignum, as part of a deal with Wulkyn.

Siponak's turn is to influence the humans on the volcanic savanna island to his worship and the practice of necromancy. The Anupu culture comes to depend upon the undead as both servants and as leaders and warriors. They become a 3 caste society, the Living, The Honored Dead, and the Servile Dead. The Living are the least numerous, but the most important, they study and build and research and are the lifeblood of the race. The Honored Dead are those preserved and returned as powerful mummies and liches, with great power to lead and protect the Living. The Servile Dead are the servants without soul or mind, they till the land and build the infrastructure at the bidding of the Living.

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Wulkyn - Second Epoch

Siponak said, "I have done as you asked now heed me, teach my people the secrets of the stars such that they may spread from their island home." To this Wulkyn agreed and went to the shores of Rakonu as a sailor and to the Anupu he gave the secrets of navigation such that they could sail from their home and return without becoming lost.

His favor to the Reaper complete Wulkyn traveled southward to the shores of Ignum and the Fire Forest and there he found a race of wild boar and he took them and shaped them and made them intelligent and crafty. Upon two legs they would walk, with powerful forms and a cunning nack for woodcraft. Thus were born the Skrofan, who tilled the meadows and plains and who learnt tricks of woodcraft and carpentry that would come in future time to have no rival. To them he gifted the knowledge of all the heavens, of prophecy and the turning of the seasons such that they would thrive.

Click to reveal.. (Explain!)

Reaction move is to teach navigation by the stars to the Anupu. Wulkyn holds back the secrets of divination however.

Wulkyn create the Skrofan, and orc like race as I described in Inspiration Strikes! #10 giving them knowledge of the seasons and prophecy so that they would succeed as farmers and craftspeople, but he withheld knowledge of navigation for them to determine on thier own, or by contact with others.

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Konsea - Second Epoch

Konsea snarled to see the damage Chaos had wrought to her people. They had laid down the implements of war; they no longer sought bodies to throw on her sacred fires. The loss of her first created race created a great fury in her.

“The Takrok shall not find it so easy to turn their backs on me!” the goddess of consumption and gluttony raged. “They shall find rocks on their path to peace! They shall not know the calm of peace; it shall leave them at times of great anger!” And so saying, the goddess cursed the peaceful mountain-dwellers with a terrible rage.

Having satisfied her vengeance, Konsea turned her attention to creating a race worth of her attentions. She saw the humans and knew they were only meat. The Jontar were already tainted, the Fen weak and so on. Each race was measured and found lacking. Disgusted, she turned to the predators of the world, pulling pieces from each of them to use in her ultimate people. Teeth, claws, poisons and other implements were taken and experimented with, used or discarded as needed.

Finally, the goddess had her race: the Ssenast. The race wasn’t overly tall, as some that had come before, but they were strong and fierce. Konsea put them in the jungles to the west of the Great River, where they would grow strong and give her much to eat.

Click to reveal.. (Explain!)
Reaction move is curse the traitorous Takroks with a Berserker’s Rage; when driven to great anger, they fall into a blinding rage, which lasts until they have destroyed what they perceived has hurt them.

The Ssenast are a felinoid race – strong, graceful and vicious. They are purely carnivore, eating the meat that comes off the fires to Konsea (after she eats the 'essense' of the meat). Again, they have gender dimorphism, where the males are notably larger than the females. They are also more bulky and heavily muscled than the females. Despite this, the females are fierce fighters as well, though they rely on their prowess as ranged fighters over pure melee. Their skills at using a sling shot, while the males rely on brute strength, make the Ssenast feared opponants.

Socially, the group is set up in small villages. The villages are separated by gender, with males and females having their own huts. The male cubs live with the mothers until they reach five summers; then they go to live with the males. Mating occurs frequently when a female is in heat and parentage is uncertain. When the cubs reach their own mating age, they embark on a rite of passage which leads them to join another village, avoiding inbreeding.


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Tal&Len - Second Epoch

The Twins gazed upon the land and shed a tear at the dissent among the Fen, but they did not act, letting the free will of their creations decide the fate of their existence on their own.

However, the Twin's Tear showered down upon the Mire. The Murg gazed up through jeweled lenses from their dredged homes, caked in the soil of their labors, gasping in awe as the bittersweet blessing rained over them. This took their fear of the light from them, and they rejoiced all the more, fully throwing themselves in the service of the Light.

The twins heard the prayers and revelry and turned their attention to the shadowed swamp. 'What creatures are these, that Kaer would force the stout and the dense to toil in such depths? We hear their praise and find it true. Though their hearts are filled with desires, they are true to themselves, and harbor no ill to their creator for what was done and instead thank him. Let the Serpent writhe, for we shall give them assistance, loyal companions to the end of their days.'

Len raked her fingers through her hair, pulling free a single strand and then blew it out over the Mire, creating the Lenai.

Click to reveal.. (Explain!)
Twin's reactionary post is to remove the Murg's light sensitivity.

The Lenai - Large ostrich/chocobo-like creatures. If a hawk, an ostrich and a jesus lizard had a baby, that is the Lenai. They are somewhat intelligent (as a horse) The Lenai can run/walk over still water, (ie, no rivers, roiling tides etc), but cannot fly. In fact, the large feathers of the wings are usually clipped at the nubs as normal maintenance to keep them cleaner and the feathers are used in many different applications. They are born white, but change color as they age. White>Yellow>Red>Brown>Green>Blue>Black. The pin feathers are both the first and last to change, giving some wild displays of color over the life of the bird. The birds are as long lived as the Murg, and are usually bonded at a young age to the Murg. By the time a Murg has reached adulthood, the Lenai is just starting to push red pinfeathers. Murg found to have a talent with magic can undergo a further bonding ritual (Murlenai) in which an eye of each of the pair is replaced with a jewel, allowing the Murg telepathic communication with the animal as well as the ability to see through its eyes.

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Kaer - Second Epoch

Kaer waved his hand in dismissal as Chaos poured over Iannin, 'Pathetic. I will see a return to the Nothing and All yet. The Thayim, they showed promise, but lacked true resolve, my hunger shall fuel them to try once more.'

Kaer reached out and put a hole in the soul of the Thayim. Taking away the sense of contentment.

'Your form is also weak, but in this too, I will help.'

Kaer sent his minions out and the Marghul obeyed, laying their seed in Thayim everywhere.

Click to reveal.. (Explain!)
Kaer's reaction is to create a burning desire in the Thayim that can never be sated. They always want something more. Be it to expand, to know, to anything...they are never content with the way things are.

His move is to create shapeshifters, not lycanthropes per se, but shapeshifters. The Thayim can now give birth (randomly, very small percentage ~.1%) to a shapeshifter. This is usually a limited ability to shift to one animal, or take on traits of that animal (claws, darkvision, gills, size, strength, whatever) and is usually related to an animal of the area they were born in. (Lions on the savannah, large lizard in the Mire, etc) Even more rare is a true shapeshifter that can take on the traits of any creature it knows of, or shift to their form (1% of that .1%)

How cultures or people react to the births I will let be determined in game, but it always kills the mother in childbirth (they are born in animal form) and shifters are mentally preset for battle and combat, almost always taking some path of warrior or soldier. They have no collective name, being so rare, but they could be called things by people.

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Beltok - Second Epoch

Beltok watched the infighting among his A'oughight, rejoicing in the things they created to help them in their internal war. But even his delight in the creation of things of war didn’t blind him to the major flaw in his people. They were excellent at creating and building, but not so good at war. And so Beltok decided that they needed two things: to stop and some help.

With a gentle hand, Beltok took those who feared outsiders and took them south and west, to the other end of the islands. There he put them, where his other children waited: the Oa’erler.

The Oa’erler were quadrupeds, made from chips of crystal left in Beltok’s workshop from creation the A’oughight. With these shards buried in the bones of the new race, they felt drawn to the beings of crystal. He made them strong, to help with labors that the weaker A’oughight found hard, and he made them fierce, to protect his people. The displaced A’oughight, who now called themselves the Z'oeiloughight, immediately befriended the creatures, seeing them as boon companions. They also embraced the decimated humans, as they had done before, in their homeland.

The A’oughight saw Beltok’s gift differently. They found that the Oa’erler could be compelled to obey them through harmonics and enslaved the intelligent creatures. With their slave’s physical prowess, they were much better prepared to fight the weakened humans.

Click to reveal.. (Explain!)
Reaction move is split the A’oughight into two locations on opposite sides of the archipelago, making the fighting impossible one group gets their technology up to the point where they can reach the other.

Beltok then creates the Oa'erler to be servants for the A’oughight. The Z’oeiloughight instead treat them as equals, much as they do the humans. The A’oughight accept the gift in the way that Beltok intended it.

The Oa’erler are quadrupeds, standing about four feet at the shoulder. They have a build similar to a big cat, which gives them strength and speed. Their elongated muzzles sport strong tusks. The lower tusks are used for upward gores; the lower ones are used to intimidate, particularly in mating rituals. Their manes are actually stiff bristles of hair, which they can raise or lower, depending on mood. Their primary attack comes from their claws, which are retractable and sharp. They are covered in a very short, tough hide, similar to suede in texture.


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Azath - Second Epoch

The First Epoch passed, and the Second Epoch arose with Races rising and struggling, striving and failing, and always nibbling at the edges with their sly ways, the Fey, who fled back to Quaress' twilight realm to avoid just retaliation. Azath cursed their fickle capriciousness, making honest iron anathema to the Fey.

Then Azath turned his gaze upon the Jotnar, finding their brooding remoteness displeasing. They had clashed with the Thayim and though they had prevailed, still, they had let themselves be herded back into the mountains like domestic livestock. Giving the Jotnar time to make something of themselves, Azath turned his sights upon forging a new people of his own.

This time, instead of starting from whole cloth, Azath worked with the base metals, the base flesh, others had made, to forge a new alloy, greater and stronger than its base components.

First, he took a man of the Skrofan and a man of the Murg, appreciating their strong builds, their skill in crafting and skill in sifting metal from the ground. He placed them on his Celestial Anvil, and using his Hand of Ice, cold hammered into a new whole.

The result was a being of formidable hardiness, dense and strong, but brittle, dark and misshapen, displeasing to the eye. Not a masterpiece. Not yet. He cast his trial piece into his Heavenly Forge, annealing it with the grace and fine-wrought features of a man of the Fen, his Hand of Fire folding and hammering anew.

What he drew forth from his Heavenly Forge was tall and powerful, without the over-done bulk of his first casting, bronzed of skin and fair of hair and eye, features and figure possessing a carefully crafted symmetry. It possessed great form and function in equal measure. But the forging had been arduous and Azath had learned from the scarcity and remoteness of the Jotnar. And so, one more, Azath cast his creation into his Heavenly Forge, leavening it with the drive and fecundity of a man of the Thayim.

He drew forth his creation and was pleased, placing them into the harsh lands of the Blasted Lands to be tempered, between the Balor to the South and West, the Burning Sands to the East, and the Jotnar and the Berserk Peace-mongers of the Takrok to the North.

And thus were the Zray'Katha made.

Click to reveal.. (Explain!)

Reaction Move: Gave the Fey a vulnerability to Iron.

The Zray'Katha are a highly militaristic, male dominated race, somewhat similar in nature to the Ancient Spartan culture. Physical and warrior training begin practically from birth, with practically no exceptions. Training is harsh, and competitions are a way of life, with resulting deaths not being unheard of. They are organized into extended Holds, which are each meant to be completely self sufficient, and mock wars are held between the Holds to determine standing and dominance. Each Hold is lead by a General, and the Generals form a council led by the Tyrant-General. Positions are determined by merit, and though children of the Generals and other positions are granted some benefit, they must earn their titles as well.

Despite the hard, hierarchical, and militaristic culture, there is room for growth and ascendancy in one's position, and they have art as well, though they prefer minimalistic and abstract styles that suggest rather than proclaim. They have great skill in metal-working however, and Master-Smiths are in fact Priests to Azath. Though they are adept with rune-magic, most other forms of magic, and casters in general are almost unheard of among the Zray'Katha.

Zray'Katha prefer large, heavy weapons that they use to great effect with their strength and reach, but rarely use full plate armor, instead preferring boiled leather from the native lizards, with strategically placed chain and plates for better maneuverability. Some Holds prefer shields, while others prefer long vambraces covering their arms for additional protection. Ranged weapons tend to be javelins or heavy flails/bolas, since they don't have access to the proper wood for bows, or a specially constructed, spring-powered heavy crossbow. Siege weapons are constructed as necessary, and when and where possible.

Zray'Katha practice warfare in both formation and small units tactics, to enhance their personal skill. Despite individual prowess, one who can't fight effectively with others is looked down upon.

Males are the providers and warriors, females invariably stay home, taking care of the home, making clothing, and birthing children. Children are raised mostly communally between. Though they are never considered warriors, women are also trained in warfare, so they can defend themselves and the children. One of the few ways for women to earn great status is to become a Smith, though it is hard for them to gain the training necessary.

The Zray'Katha have pronounced gender dimorphism, with males standing a powerful seven and half to eight feet tall, while women are usually six to six and a half feet tall and more slender. They all have pale eyes and fair hair, and their eyes are swept back into long, tapering points. They possess an odd evenness or symmetry to their builds and features that often make them appear hard or foreboding, but occasionally, it results in a great beauty - which is sometimes mocked and sometimes admired. Both however have very hardy constitutions, with great endurance, enabling them to thrive in the varying heat and cold of the Blasted Lands, requiring less sleep, and to resist most diseases and poisons. Men make up two thirds of the population, with men challenging each other for the right to breed, to see who can provide the strongest sons.

Both sexes reach full maturity at twelve years old, gestation only takes four months, and twin births (fraternal, very rarely identical) are common, though women aren't usually constantly pregnant. However, if a battle goes disastrously wrong, they can swiftly restore their slain men, if necessary. Though they do not possess the longevity of the Fen, they still live longer than the Thayim and do not suffer the depredations of age.

Due to the method of their creation, the Zray'Katha do suffer from the occasional mutation, usually additional limbs. A common one which is accepted are Zray'Katha who have four arms instead of two, which makes up ten to twenty-five percent of the population, depending on the Hold. Other deformations are considered vulgar and killed at birth for being flawed.

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Quaress - Second Epoch

Quaress bared her teeth in a malicious grin. Azath dared to curtail the machinations of the Fey, did he? Then she would answer in kind with a gift for his newly fashioned people - a gift that would be long in the giving.

Quaress first went to Siponak, charming the Reaper with a coy tongue. "Does not the Amaranth Oak send more into your embrace than those you must strive for? Azath has angered me with the infliction he has placed upon my Chosen. Lend me one of your malady-laden breaths, so that I may repay him in kind."

And because Quaress had fooled many into his embrace, Siponak agreed, breathing a legion of his invisible minions upon her palm. Quaress closed her hand, and smiled.

Then Quaress stole into the domain of the Reaper's wife, Zahan-Thaya, Goddess of Life, Growth and Abundance. Taking the form of an innocuous nightingale, her mellifluous song concealed her divine nature from Zahan-Thaya's notice. Settling into the boughs of a Tree of Life, Quaress purloined a seed ripe with the potential for fertility and growth in all living things. Quaress hid the seed in her gullet and laughed, thrilling a silvery warble.

Taking The Breath and The Seed into her Twilight Realm half a step sideways from Iannin, Quaress used her deft fingers to weave them into gossamer veil large enough to encompass an entire people. She let each of the Fey place a hand upon it, drawing a pinch of power from each. The flesh of the Fey had been changed, and so, the Zray'Katha would know a fundamental change as well... And if Azath kept a close eye upon his master-crafted people, so too would he.

From the shadows of the Blasted Lands, Quaress danced, casting the Veil of Change upon all the Zray'Katha, a change long in its germination, that would strike deep at Azath's male pride.

She would recast his people, and in so doing, recast the Forge God as well.

Pleased with her trick, Quaress left the hideous Blasted Lands to flit across Iannin. Her prismatic eyes fell upon a red-furred Fox with interest as it watched a party of Skrofan Hunters from the underbrush. The Fox darted silently away, to strut into a Tiger's den with surprising arrogance, purposely stepping upon a twig. The sharp snap roused the great cat into a furious state.

And then the chase was on! The Tiger ran through the Fire Forest with unmatched strength and power, but the Fox was sly and elusive, ducking through thorny underbrush and around trees. With startling speed, the Fox ran between the legs of the Skrofan Hunters, who stared at the Fox in rueful surprise... until the Tiger was upon them with a roar.

And while the Hunters and the Tiger fought a battle neither had expected, the Fox sauntered into the Hunters' camp, to partake of their abandoned supplies, sharp teeth gnawing at the straps of secured bags.

Quaress giggled in delight at the Fox's cunning. She stepped into the camp, picking up the Fox, stroking its fur with a long finger and placing her blessing upon it with a kiss between the eyes.

A trickster indeed, the Fox would now be able to play among animals and men.

Click to reveal.. (Explain!)

Reaction: Quaress has set a germinating change into the Zray'Katha, that will take effect in the next epoch over the course of several generations. Their gender dimorphism will reverse, so females will typically be near eight feet tall and the men will be under six and a half feet tall. As well, female births will be even more common, so they comprise seventy-five percent of the population.

Further, Quaress is hoping that if the connection between the Zray'Katha and Azath remains strong, Azath will end up unavoidably taking on the characteristics of his favoured race. i.e. the decidedly male god will become female. wink

Action: Quaress has made foxes intelligent, though they can't speak humanoid languages and communicate among each other with scent and mental images (similar to how the Wolves are portrayed in the Wheel of Time series). Also, their front paws are somewhat better articulated, so they can manipulate items as well as a raccoon can. Finally, a rare few foxes have the ability to shapechange into humanoids (they can transform into any humanoid, but each humanoid form they assume is a distinct one - whenever the fox shifts into a Fen, it'll always have the same appearance)

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Zahan-Thaya - Second Epoch

The near destruction of the Thayim brought to her knees in anguish, but she would not let her mourning consume her. She beckoned those of the Thayim that yet survived and had them dance with her in the bloodstreams of Elan.

'Do not mourn the loss of your kindred, but yet instead, celebrate your survival. To the day that Chaos consumes us all, you will feel drawn once per Turn of the seasons to renew this feeling with all the kin of Iannin, as we are all brothers and sisters in creation.'

'Further, I will open your hearts to Elan, feel the life that he felt and gave for this world and pay tribute, use it in these things I have said.'

Click to reveal.. (Explain!)
The humans are now capable of breeding with any other race, therefore opening up half-breeds. They are also now geared towards magic using, being talented in the areas of spellcasting/elementalism. Also added that they have a tradition of a yearly festival/celebration that stems from the end of the Sky Edge Wars, but more specifically, that they were survivors and not victims. This celebration is open to any and all, not specifically just the Thayim and from this celebration, many half-breeds are born. (bow chicka bow wow...wink-wink)
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Ankassar - Second Epoch

Ankassar hissed in distaste as the Balor retreated into the night in fear of the Twins.

'If the dark is what you seek, then there you shall live.'

Ankassar funneled out a great fiery breath into a cavern in the badlands, creating a cascade effect that cleared out and erupted a honeycomb network of tunnels and caves beneath the entirety of the Blasted Lands.

'I shall create in my own image what I should have done to start.'

Ankassar flew over the north edge of the Mire, landing where the brackish waters and great Cypress forests sought to stave off the incoming tides.

'Here I shall lay my kind, and from here, they will spread.'

So did Ankassar lay the mud fields with the eggs of the progenitor Ankassim.

Click to reveal.. (Explain!)
Ankassar's reactionary move created the Underground Blasted Lands for the Balor.

The Ankassim are reptilian/lizardlike humanoids with dragonscales and a very limited form of dragonsbreath (think Dragon-Lance). Once they reach a certain age/maturity they gain the ability to shapeshift into a hybrid-form which grants them the ability to fly as they grow large leathery wings.

Although they appear intimidating and dangerous they are actually a kind race and very responsible of their surroundings, searching for diplomatic solutions rather than using their physical superiority to enforce decisions. The Ankassim reproduce slowly but are gifted with long lives and high resilience to external influences.

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Chaos - Second Epoch

Chaos chortled as Iannin continued to grow and prosper, matter being forced to purpose where before it had none. Kaer did not notice when the seals cracked and from it escaped a small winged messenger. It landed upon a Murghal just as it dematerialized into Iannin and as it reformed, it quickly fluttered off across the plains, unaware of what it was seeding...

The Wailing Winter is how it was to be told of in legends, but its effects upon the peoples that lived through it were not so easily explained. A hurricane to end all hurricanes was the harbinger of that Ages long season. A hurricane that raged over the Sea of Tears and scattered the migrating Ankassim to the four corners of the planet. Such flooding occurred in the Blasted Lands, that many of the Balor were forced to leave loved ones behind as they made the quest through Jotnar's Wall and into the forests beyond. The Fen too, were displaced, some seeking refuge in the lowlands to the south. These Fen, finding the living easy compared to the harsher Flatlands, surged in population just as the cold began to set in. The Jotnar, ironically, were ill-prepared for the storms and ensuing frost and lost half their number over the turns.

And so it did, the Wailing Winter brought Ages of ice to Iannin, and many adapted. The Takrok, the Lenai and the Z'oiloughight soon found themselves no longer bothered by the frosty bittersness of cold. Even the A'oughight found a way to adapt, by feeding on the crystals of the Oa'erler that they had come to depend on. A dependence they eventually found themselves chained to for their very survival.

With the Ssenast moving into the primordial forests, the A'fen found themselves pushed to the rivers and lakes they settled near, fearing conflict. They had adapted to this life through their markings, tattooing themselves with an ability to breathe water to enable fishing and if need be, escape. As the cold grew closer over the turns, the way of life turned more and more to the water. When even the Great River threatened to ice over completely, the decision was made and they sought refuge in the waters that had become their way of life. Some Ssenast that had begun trade with the A'fen pleaded to not be left, and were also tattooed and taken. Soon they only returned to land to give birth and the child would immediately undergo the ritual tattooing and they would retreat back to water.

Some things of wonder were made during this time, the Skrofan, tended the trees of the Fire Forest, a forest that stayed in flaming brilliance for most of the Winter. Their knowledge seemed gifted of the gods when it culminated in something that would forever be a hallmark of their civilization, a Gyre, composed of still-living trees.

Far off, the Murg as well, would manage well in their heated swamps. So much that they would proclaim to Iannin their skill through the carving of the very face of a mountain. A triad of giant stylizations of Murg were carved into the Mountain of Sorrow, so that all who came near would know, it was their land.

The Anupu survived by throwing themselves even more so into their faith of Siponak, hailing him in all things of their lives and being pardoned when reaping was due. Quaress would soon realize that her touch had lingered too long upon the Fox, and their youth and playfulness would last until death.

During this time, nature was not lax and the ring of mountains about the Blasted Lands, saw themselves rise as plates shifted and adapted to Ankassar's will upon their roots.

Click to reveal.. (Explain!)
*Fen - Population doubles

*Takrok - Immunity to cold

*Jotnar - Population halves

*Murg - Create World Wonder

*A'oughight - Become parasitic

*Balor - Become divided geographically

*Thayim - Gave them a pass for being so fucked with the last round and reactionary.

*Anupu - Faith bent.

*Skrofan - Create World Wonder

*Ssenast - Splinter species

*Lenai - Immunity to cold

*Z'oeiloughight - Immunity to cold

*Oa'erler - Hurricane

*Zray'Katha - Mountains

*Fox - Immunity to aging (effects only, no increase to lifespan)

*Ankassim - Population becomes scattered

*A'fen - Become aquatic

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Tal & Len - Third Epoch

The Twins beamed with pride as their chosen, the Fen, went forth upon the planet, beginning the process of social evolution. When they saw some of their children dive deep into the waters for fear of the ever encroaching cold, at first it angered them, but they saw the truth of the A'Fen's reasoning and decided instead to gift them so that they would be not be without the grace of their creators.

As they passed over Iannin, they rained down a fiery blessing in the waters of the A'fen, casting their Light to once more warm the hearts of their people.

'This cold that encases the world must end. Our light will shine until the rivers run with the melt.'

And so it was until the frost was pushed back that the Twins did blaze in the sky.

Click to reveal.. (Explain!)
Reactionary: Create a metal/ore that reacts with water and glows, giving off bluish light to start that fades to orange/red as it is fading/burning out(which takes a very long time, many turns). Requires a big chunk or refined and purified amount to give significant light. This ore can only be found in or around the lakes and rivers of the subcontinent west of the Great River and north of the Sea of Tears. Just a note, the Twins still consider the A'fen the same as the Fen, and make no distinction between the two.

Action:Ending the Ice Age by the suns not setting.

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Kaer - Third Epoch

Kaer gazed out upon the nature-born grave marker and snorted in disgust at his creation.

'Their arrogance needs checked. Too long have they lived without true danger. They must be tested before they grow soft and complacent.'

Kaer slithered through the Mire, weaving paths of sinkholes, quicksand and other dangers. The plants that fed on the ichor of Kaer's passing were corrupted themselves, seeking life for sustenance or protecting themselves with thorns, poisons and disease. Through his travels, he came upon wild Lenai and bit them, sinking his fangs deep.

They fled from the god, but the damage was done, and so were born the Keyai.

Click to reveal.. (Explain!)
Reactionary: Making the Mire dangerous; sucking mud pits, quicksand, poisonous flora.

Action: Creating the Keyai, a corrupt evolutionary throwback of the Lenai, basically aggressive velociraptors that hunt in packs and like to chase and tease their prey to exhaustion.

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Beltok - Third Epoch

Zahan-Thaya’s actions delighted Beltok, and the god was invigorated by the possibilities. Grabbing a number of half-breeds, he dropped them in an isolated area and sat back to see all the wonderful variations that could occur in their mutt-offspring.

As he watched the Mutt-Thayans begin to reproduce, Beltok recalled what the Twins had done, and it seeded an idea in his own mind. He walked along the banks of the thawing river and reached into the water, pulling out a chunk of the stone. Removing it to his Celestial lab, he examined it, then handed it to his Unmakers. “Take that apart for me, so that I may play with the pieces.”

In time, the Unmakers put the components on his desk, and the Maker began to build. He took pieces from the ore, and the last dust from his experiments building the A’oughight and Oaerler. He melted all of these together in his pot and made a new ore – light and strong. With the remnant of Elan’s blood cooked into it, the ore hummed with his power.

Pleased with the results, Beltok took it and cast it across Iannin, dropping it in streams large and small across the earth. The metal sank out of sight, hidden but there for later use.

Click to reveal.. (Explain!)
Reactionary: Beltok captures a bunch of the half-breeds and dumps them on the upcurve of land north of the Titan Steps. Isolated there, he starts to see what happens when the half-breeds breed amongst themselves. It’s up to Chaos what happens, but this isolated area becomes nicknamed the Mutt Highlands for that reason.

Action: Beltok creates an ore and scatters it over Iannin. It is superb for making any tool or weapon and easily enchanted due to the infusion of Elan’s life-force.

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Azath - Third Epoch

Azath looked down on the Zray'Katha and smile, pleased. They had weathered the Wailing Winter and the Flooding of the Blasted Lands and grown. And now, they endured The Twins blazing light even as they began to expand south into the lands abandoned by the Balor, clashing with them as they driven underground by the Light and across Jotnar's Wall by the Flooding.

Then did Azath's gaze fall upon the Jotnar once more and then did he frown. They were huge and powerful, yet had been lain low by the Wailing Winter and their own small numbers and solitary nature. He would give them one more chance, else he would let Iannin reduced them to slag, raw material to be reforged into something new.

And so, Azath spent mortal generations forging a great Hammer, the Thane-Hammer. With one hand, he reached into the core of Iannin and drew forth molten metal of every hue and with the other, he reached into the waters and drew forth metals both rich in luminescence and Elan's Blood and set them upon his Anvil, to be formed into a flawless whole, deeply incised with Runes and thrumming with power.

And when he was done, Azath cast the Thane-Hammer onto Jotnar's Wall, a call, a challenge, a demand for a Thanesmoot. If each Jotnar saw itself as a Jarl, he would see a Thane to lead them, into glory or ruination.

So focused was he on the Thane-Hammer, Azath did not see the seed Quaress had planted in the Zray'Katha bloom, nor did he hear the change in tone of the hammers ringing upon the anvils, until it was far too late. He watched in rage and disgust as confusion and chaos staggered the progress of his favoured people. With each generation, men dwindled closer to the stature of mere women, if that, and women swelled to the size and strength of men, their numbers ever growing as those of men lessened.

And Azath's rage grew into a simmering heat, as womanly hands picked up smithing hammers men could no longer wield. His Clysm-Brides went into contractions in unwanted sympathy, causing the molten hearts of volcanoes across Iannin to rumble and seethe and the waters of the Broken Isles to bubble and boil.

And with each peal of steel against anvil, hymns to his worship, Azath found himself being cast more and more into a likeness of the Zray'Katha smith-priestesses. Once a God of Fire and Ice, Azath was now an unwilling Goddess of Fire and Water, a slave to the vagaries of mortal veneration.

When the Thayim among the Broken Isles called out to the Mother of the Waters for deliverance, Azath's anger grew cold, the waters cooling to merely unusual warmth. And when the Thayim cried out in thanks for Her blessing, Azath gave them harsh smile, creating great leviathans of the depths with mirrored scales like steel to trouble them, so that she might hear their cries again.

Click to reveal.. (Explain!)
Action: Azath created the Thane-Hammer, both a symbol and a source of power proclaiming the leader of all Jotnar. It has a glowing, glossy, almost translucent black head marbled with gleaming silver and dark iron, backed by a spike. The haft is a solid piece formed of seamless precious metals and capped by a huge, rough-cut diamond, it's grip simply a roughened surface. The whole thing is covered by tiny, incised Runes.

He placed it on Jotnar's Wall, and now, the majority of the remaining Jotnar are migrating there, heeding it's call for a Thanesmoot, unable to resist the chance of becoming the ruler of all Jotnar.

Reaction: Quaress' trick from the previous epoch has activated, switching the gender dimorphism between, so women are the much larger and more numerous sex. As well, Azath did take on characteristics from his mortal worshipers, becoming a Goddess in the process.

Her rage wasn't a full-blown event, just enough to make volcanic activity a little more pronounced, enough to cause magma to bubble to the surface or leak now the sides of volcanoes,so didn't count that as a true action.

Actual reaction was to create huge Sea Serpents with brightly finished, hard scales that can breath searing water/mist, that a native to the Archipelagos and the sea north of them between the two bigger, volcanic islands.

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Wulkyn - Third Epoch

Wulkyn smiled as his creations, given the knowledge of the workings of the heavens themselves, used their own unique talents to create a Gyre in their homelands. Seeing the Skronfan as ready, Wulkyn taught to them the tricks of navigation and mapping, and unlocked for them the knowledge required to use the Gyres for transportation. Armed with this new knowledge the Skrofan began to colonize the crystal island they found after traveling through the Gyre, and named it A'va'lan.

Reaching deep into the bedrock of Iannin Wulkyn gathered up a double handful of crystal shards. Each powerful in their own right Wulkyn considered the creation of a third Gyre before dismissing the idea. Prophecy too readily available would only taint the world in ways that the order of the heavens was not meant to. Instead Wulkyn cast the crystals all over Iannin such that where they landed a great Axis Stone would arise from the earth. These stones would anchor the life stream of Elan, and allow transport among them and the Gyres.

Click to reveal.. (Explain!)

Reaction: Teaching the Skrofan the secrets of navigation and the use of the gyre to allow them to colonize the north of the main continent.

Action: Creating "a double handful" (about a dozen? more?) megalithic Axis Stones that serve two purposes. Firstly they can be used to transport to any other megalith or Gyre, and secondly they act as ley line anchors.

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Konsea - Third Epoch

Konsea sneered at her people begging to go into the water with the A’fen. “No matter,” she growled, her eyes of fire blazing in her skull. “My true people continue and remain strong.

She turned her eyes to the Thayans who crossed the wide plains to the northeast. She came to their priests in dreams, giving them visions of war and fire, pushing them to rise and conquer their brethren. Some remained faithful to Zahan-Thaya but some turned to Konsea and rained down destruction in her name.

With the fires for the dead feeding her, Konsea turned her attention to her blessings. She created two weapons, one for each of her chosen. The first was a bow, the first of its kind. Called Konsea’s Bite, this bow became an object of much desire, for it could pierce many things and it impacted its target with a kiss of fire.

The second weapon is named Konsea’s Fang. The curved sword danced with Konsea’s flame, and like her Bite, cuts deeply. Just before she cast them out into the world, she tied them together so that when used by the same person, they would bring further blessings.

The bow was meant for the women of the Ssenast, for their champion to use instead of the courser slings and stones that had been their primary weapon. The sword was given to the Thayans loyal to her on the Northern Steppes.

Click to reveal.. (Explain!)
Reaction: Converting nomadic Thayans living on the Northern Steppes to be loyal to her.

Action: The creation of two weapons, magically linked. Both have Penetrating and does Sustained damage. When used by the same person, the linked weapons allow the user to release a Blast (Fire) as an attack.

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Quaress - Third Epoch

The shadowy places of Iannin and where the barriers were thin between Iannin and the Faerie Realm whispered with Quaress' laughter. Much had happened during the latest Epoch of the games, she was much intrigue by Beltok's Mutt-Thayans, but it paled in the face of the loss of a God in favour of another Goddess.

Quaress sauntered into the Smithy of Azath, straddling the Anvil with a grin as she watched feminine Azath toil at her Forge.

"Do you come to mock me for my loss?" Azath accused.

Quaress' grin widened upon seeing the length and girth of the suggestive piece of steel held in Azath's blue-white Hand of Fire. "Mock? Not I. I have come to reveal that what you see as a curse can be seen as a gift."

"Gift?!" Azath shouted. She dropped the piece of steel and closed her hands into fists, one flaring with flames, the other crackling with ice. "Leave this place, Whore, lest I show you my gifts!"

"You already are," Quaress teased as her eyes glanced lower before she stepped within Azath's embrace, a lover's caress stilling her rage with the unaccustomed sensations it arose in her body.

Quaress placed her lips close to Azath's ear, flicking it with a coy tongue. "My Maiden of the Forge, if you ever seek to be a maiden no more, I will be glad to remedy it for you." Azath stiffened as she felt something probe at her nether regions and Quaress chuckled in capricious delight, her voice a malicious whisper. "As you have gifted my Fey, so have I and your crafted people have gifted you."

As Azath roared in wrath and humiliation, Quaress slipped away with another laugh, purloining the tailings of the Thane-Hammer. They were heavy with the merits of the hardness of metal, yet gleamed with the translucency of diamonds of black with a prismatic sheen. Beautiful with favourable characteristics, she could see these mere scraps, this Onyxiron, being coveted.

Now to see what mortals would do, would suffer to pry it from the ground. Quaress looked down upon Iannin and found the barrenness of the Burning Sands and cast the shards of Onyxiron upon then, to sink below the surface. From the sands, Quaress teased forth jagged, glassy spires, their glinting beneath the light of Tal and Len drawing the eyes from all surrounding the Burning Sands.

And then Quaress flitted among all the mortals, spreading rumours of the Onyxiron and ruins of the First Race hidden beneath the sands, drawing forth yet more of the curious and the seekers.

And in time, people flocked to the barren and lifeless sands, drawn by bits of gaudiness and rumour.

Click to reveal.. (Explain!)

Reaction: Quaress created a new mineral - Onyxiron: It looks like black diamonds with a prismatic sheen to the surface, but can be melted and shaped like steel. It's very hard, but also very heavy, so only suitable for weapons and armour by those strong enough to endure the weight. It's mostly only found in the Desert, in accretions of glass and crystal/quartz.

Action: Seeding the Desert with Onyxiron, then forming the jagged, glassy spires and spreading rumours, to draw people to the Desert, which will in turn result in the Desert being settled to a degree by a rather cosmopolitan, multiracial society, original focused on treasure hunting.

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Siponak - Third Epoch

Siponak watched with interest as Wulkyn sowed his Axis Stones, one by one pinning the flows of Elan's Blood to be affixed to certain locations and giving the mortals a means to cover great distance in the blink of an eye. In the far north where Azath's icy grip had frozen the land evermore one of the Axis stones did erupt to stand as an icy way-point. Siponak reached forth and with his sickle he altered the runes glowing on the surface, adding a capability which would be unique to this single Axis, the ability to traverse the veil between the worlds of the living and the dead. The Axis stone's rune changed from blue to red and the stone itself became black as obsidian. To those who knew of it it would become known as the Axis Mortis.

Siponak saw the new metals and materials his fellows were bestowing to the mortal races of Iannin and decided that he too would leave his gift upon mortal smiths. Siponak was not a maker however, and he choose instead to grant knowledge and power instead of a new ore or crystal. Thus he did walk the land and for each race and culture he found their greatest craftsman, be they iron monger or silversmith, woodworker or mason. To the greatest craftsmen he gave the knowledge of certain rituals and runes, symbols and techniques, all of which when combined would allow for the binding of a soul to the item. Some of the craftsmen refused Siponak's gift as horrible evil and were stricken down. Others failed to master the complex processes and were likewise claimed by the Reaper as unfit. A scant few, eager and greedy for knowledge and power, or unafraid of the cost in death, mastered the Reaper's teachings and with them were able to create the first Umbral enchantments.

Click to reveal.. (Explain!)

Reaction: Creates the Axis Mortis. An Axis Stones in the north arctic (redundant, I know) that Siponak has modified to be able to breach the veil between the world and the underworld. Allowing ghosts and mortals to pass between the two.

Action: Siponak has taught a handful of mortal smiths the secrets to Umbral magic which binds the soul of a sacrificial victim to an item and in turn bestows great power to those who control the item. Umbral weapons are are to strike both flesh and spirit (Damage effect resisted by Will) while Umbral armor is incredibly tough and resilient (extra toughness and impervious). Other Umbral items may be enchanted to various effects, usually excelling at their mundane task in some way.

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Zahan-Thaya - Third Epoch

Watching her creations being abused by her fellow Gods and Chaos Zahan-Thaya fell into a deep sorrow which soon turned into a maddening rage. In her blinding fury she spilled the seed of life and creation randomly over the land not caring what she touched and twisted. None was spared from her rage and she left some abominations but also fantastic creations in her wake. When she was done she collapsed from the exhaustion else her madness would’ve gone on forever.

When she woke up she gazed upon the land and wondered. Where she had lain down the land was changed forever, infused by her essence but also by the twisting rage of the nightmares she had which were born from her madness.

Click to reveal.. (Explain!)

Reaction: Zahan-Thaya creates cross-breeds/mythical creatures infused by her wild-magic. These creatures are both powerful but rare and all are touched to some degree by her essence but pay a heavy price in return. As magical creatures most of Zahan-Thaya’s Gifts are attributed to aspects of these creatures, making them priced hunting trophies which grant great magical powers.

Some Examples (there will be more as the GM sees fit): Pegasus (Wings grant flying), Manticore (Stinger/Poison as weapon), Centaur (hooves grant great speed) – these are just a few examples, but many more can be added. Feel free to take your liberties.

Action: Zahan-Thaya rested on the western edge of the Mire and the land mass west of that which extends south to the polar region. The place has been turned into the Wylds – a magically infused forest/swamp area which is unpredictable and dangerous but also gives birth to all kinds of twisted creatures, plants and even humanoids. Zahan-Thaya’s magic affects all living things some take longer, some change fast. The longer one stays in the Wylds the greater the chance of gaining some kind of derangement increases but also a magical boon in shape of a mutation or even an evolutionary jump may occur. Only those granted protection/blessing by Zahan-Thaya herself can travel through the Wyld untouched.

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Ankassar - Third Epoch

Worried by the scattering of his favoured sons and daughters Ankassar set out to inspire his people to build mighty fortress-like Temples – the Temples of the four winds. The Temples would draw their kin as Ankassar compelled them to built the mighty walls required to satisfy Ankassar’s pride.

Click to reveal.. (Explain!)

Action: Ankassar will start to built four temples each worthy of the world wonders with the intent to finish them over the next 4 turns (one each turn). The Dragonkin will grow more isolated as they focus their existence to accomplish the task inspired by their god. This will lead to a degree of alienation from the other races of Iannin, making the former kind and responsible Kassim grow more arrogant and proud. Over time the four Temples will change the Dragonkin, creating 4 distinct types of their race (Norther, Souther, Western, Eastern – they’ll have different builds and differently colored scales and eye colors so one can tell if he is dealing with a northern or western Kassim)

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Chaos- Third Epoch

The wild whim of Chaos continued to ebb and flow over the face of Iannin, manipulating and pulling the desires and dangers of its flora and fauna.

The Fen, first and foremost in the minds of their creators took the heat of the Twins into their beings and vanquished their inability to deal with the cold, even as the ice finished receding.

But this everlasting heat was not without its own effects upon the land. Far off in Jotnar's wall, mountains that had slumbered since the dawning of creation, woke. Eruptions oozed the lifeblood of Iannin throughout the mountains and even in the Great River.

After so many years of weathering storms, cold and solitude, the Jotnar relished the heat of Iannin's core, sending their civilization into a never before seen explosion in population and expansion. The mutts and crossbreeds of the peninsula quickly adapted, and were not bothered by the heat of life near the lava flows.

The continued rumbling of the Wall caused reverberations in the vast desert and shards of Onyxiron burst forth from the sands, forming a new Gyre. Sister to this new site, a Gyre also erupted in the Wylds, its description and location unclear, as each tale told would be different.

The sudden appearance of two new Gyres was too much for the Bloodstreams of Elan to absorb. The Axis Mortis quivered with a rage that would challenge the gods, sending a never to be known number of the Axis stones crumbling to dust.

This quake did cause a massive wave, most of which still stands frozen in the north. The part that did manage to escape thrashed through the Archipelago of the A'oughight, sweeping under many in its wrath. Even the serpents of the deep did suffer in the turmoiled waters as they were swept far inland, unable to retreat to the sea. The Z'oeiloughight, learning of the destruction and concerned for the survival of the Oa'erler, set out to lend aid. Concerned when they were put face to face with the treatment of the Oa'erler and the A'oughight's vampiric nature, the Z'oeiloughight took as many as they could of the Oa'erler away, secreting them off to Rakonu and forever changing the apathetic nature of themselves. Deprived of the creatures they had come to depend on, more so in a time of disaster, the A'oughight suffered greatly.

Rakonu was not idle in this time either. The Axis Mortis quake sent the volcano of the island's namesake spewing forth onto the land, sending the dead and living alike to a grave beyond rising. The Anupu, never without faith in the Sultan of Souls, threw themselves into a religious fervor, dedicating their every fiber to the word of Siponak. They were guided through this period by their own Umbral magics as the pieces they had created began to communicate back, giving the wisdom of Ages past, and sometimes more...

The Epoch was not without its less disasterous events, the Murg hunted the Keyai near to extinction before they retreated into the depths of the most dangerous parts of the Mire. The Zray'Katha, toiling under the burden of the Blasted Lands, learned to ignore the heat of their home, refusing to acknowledge the Twins effect upon the land. And some of the Ssenast, moving south away from the volcanic eruptions and following the land south around the Sea of Tears found their way to the Mire, but not before passing through the edge of the Wylds, giving themselves a black shimmering fur and deep luminescent eyes.

Click to reveal.. (Explain!)
*Fen - Immune to cold

*Takrok - Volcano

*Gyre's - Pop doubles

*Jotnar - Pop Triples

*Murg - NA

*Aman Oak - NA

*A'oughight - Pop halves

*Baylor - NA

*Thayim - NA

*Anupu - Faith (again, yay for zealots!)

*Skrofan - Tsunami

*Ssenast - Splinter species (again)

*Lenai - NA

Shapeshifters - NA

*Z'oeiloughight - Lose a quirk

*Oa'erler - Pop moves

*Zray'Katha - Immune to heat

*Foxes - NA

*Ankassim - NA

*A'Fen - Volcano

*Keyai - Population quarters

*Lucenite - NA

*Elanil - NA

*Mutts - Immune to heat

*Sea Serpents - Population quarters

*Axis Stones - Population quarters (kinda moot, since we never defined the amount, but there be lots of ruins now) laugh

*Konsea Weapons - NA

*Onyxiron - NA

*Umbral Magic - Symbiotic

*Axis Mortis - Earthquake

*Wylds - NA

*Magic creatures - NA

*Northern Temple - NA

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Konsea - Fourth Epoch

The Devourer looked upon her land and her people, and was pleased with them. As such, she gave blessings unto those who followed her: her sacrificial fires would no longer hurt them.

Having secured worshippers on the ground, Konsea looked to the air. Taking some of the storm clouds that cycled around the sphere, and grabbing a handful of the dark-skinned Thayam around the Sea of Tears, the goddess began to reshape and mold. She kept their dark skins but gave them lightening-eyes, glowing white like the strikes that impaled the ground. She reshaped their minds to her service and made them hunger for flesh, like her. Then she reshaped the clouds into membraned wings and forged them to the backs of the hapless Thayam. Still they were too heavy, so she hollowed out their bones and shrank them.

Only then did the fledgling race fly: the Jreila.

Click to reveal.. (Explain!)
Reaction: Konsea grants an immunity to fire so long as they are her sacred fires and so long as the person is faithful to her. These are granted to the Ssenast, the Mire’nast (those Ssenast who migrated to the Mire) and the Konthay (the Mongol-like humans she converted to her worship). This immunity only works if the fires are blessed by her priest(ess(es))s.

Action: Created the Jreila. Though relatively small, having the same mass and wing span as a condor, they are mean. They mate for life, selecting nesting sites high in massive trees or along cliffs. The nests are more like small huts, completely enclosed. Their fires to Konsea burn in small clay or stone bowls. They give birth to live babies, which are barricaded in the nests while the parents seek food. The Jreila don’t have a culture as most see it; they are smart but prefer isolation. They will mark territory and fight for it viciously, often to the death. They will hunt for food but will also steal or scavenge it. They are considered pests, but some areas leave them be because they will attack other predators, dropping sharp rocks and burning oil from above.

Image to come.

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Wulkyn - Fourth Epoch

Wulkyn stepped back from his work and looked up. In the heavens the first in a long line of great celestial conjunctions was about to begin, one that would come but once during every great age and rain fire and falling stars upon the face of Iannin. Though the workings had been long in the making and though he eagerly awaited the Starfall, Wulkyn did not wish to eradicate all the progress that he and the others had wrought. He went to the Gyres and taught them their use to predict such events. The Skrofan, and the people of the great desert would know of the coming Starfall and be able to take refuge. To others he taught techniques that did not rely on the Gyres; though less accurate they provided some warning of the coming disaster.

Click to reveal.. (Explain!)

Reaction: Allowing those who have access to a Gyre to know that the metor storm & fire rain is coming.

Action: Creating a rare (once per age) celestial event where both suns and all three moons eclipse and cause meteor showers and fire rain. Any population drops this age can be blamed of the first Starfall.

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Beltok - Fourth Epoch

Beltok was happy with his people, who were continuing to change. Though they had splintered into two people, they were still inventing things, which was what their god wanted. However, he was a little saddened that they hadn’t liked his gift of the Oa’erler. Still, the making of things was what made him happy. Turning his attention to his Muthay, his Thayam-crossed mutts, he gifted them with increased fertility, so as to further his experiments.

His side project continuing to show promise, Beltok set his mind to the forwarding of creation. He reached into the earth, near where the channels of Elan’s blood ran, and created caverns. On the walls of each of these, he carved some secret of the world yet to be discovered. Glowing fungus grew there to give light, and the god created paths to each. None of them were direct paths; they would require bravery and skill to reach each of these caves. But for those who dared, vast knowledge and powers of creation awaited them.

Click to reveal.. (Explain!)
FIRST! I formally change the A'oughight to the A’lough and the Z'oeiloughight to the Z’hight. Now stop complaining. wink

Reaction: Increasing the ‘Mutts’ fertility as they start to become their own people, the Muthay.

Action: Creating caves with powerful secrets about the workings of the universe on them (magic spells, Greek fire, any wondrous thing the ST cares to throw at the world). Finding these caves should be difficult but most people know they are always found near ley lines.

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Siponak - Fourth Epoch

As the great volcano burst lave forth onto the island of Rakonu he watched as the lives burned away drove his chosen people to further zealotry in his name. Pleased with their dedication to him, he gifted his priests with power over elemental fire.

Seizing the meteoric iron that has fallen from the sky Siponak once more seeks out the master smiths from all the civilizations and teaches them the methods of forging the black, cold, and scarring, Dakar Steel which consumes heat with the insatiable hunger of the chaos that exists outside of the Heavens. Due to the rarity of meteoric iron the weapons forged from it are scarce and much sought after for their properties.

Click to reveal.. (Explain!)

Reaction: Allows his priests access to fire magic as a gift for their devotion. Not limited to the Anupu.

Action: Teaching the people of the world how to forge Meteoric Iron into enchanted Dakar Steel which retains the cold of space and freezes on contact (secondary effect extra and incurable extra). Special gloves are required to wield weapons made of Dakar Steel but they are highly sought after. Dakar steel is dark gray-black, and resists polishing resulting in weapons of distinguished appearance.

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Tal & Len - Fourth Epoch

Tal & Len watched as Zahan-Thaya raged over the land and cast a sorrowful look over the Wylds, seeing the tumultuous effects.

'Chaos has touched the goddess, she spreads it upon the land. But hold! What is this?'

Even as they sank beneath the waves, their attention was grabbed by a small vine, clinging to life in the crevice of a rock deep in the Wylds, straining and yearning for light. With one last fling of the wrist, Tal flung the the fruit of the plant high into the air, where it scattered its seed to the winds of Iannin.

Click to reveal.. (Explain!)
Reactionary: They stop blasting the land with their heat. wink

Action: Creating Sanare (Suh-naar-aye), a slow growing hardy vine similar to grapes. The more difficult it is for the plant to grow, the more potent its healing fruit. The plant is very common, but wherever the plant has it easy (plenty of light, water, etc, it has next to no healing power. It is not easily cultivated, resisting all attempts to be modernized into a crop. The fruit pods will dry up and then explode under internal steam pressure, casting cottonwood like seeds into the air.

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Kaer - Fourth Epoch

Kaer fumed to see the traitorous Murg hunt down the Keyai, 'They would destroy that which I gift them with? So be it. Though the scales shall be balanced not to their favor.'

Kaer found the last of the Keyai and slithered around them, leaving an oily trail that soon shimmered and disappeared.

'Let them be hunted now.'

Finally sated with his excursion on Iannin, Kaer returned to the Empyrean Gates and sat upon his throne. He mulled over the various magics the gods had gifted unto their peoples through the use of Elan.

'Should we ever return to the balance of Chaos, there will be need of a magic not dependent upon that fool, Elan.'

Kaer walked over to the seals that bound Chaos from Iannin and put up his clawed hand before it. From his finger, the claw extended, becoming smaller and infinitely sharp and finite as it approached. At last, it made contact and Kaer penetrated the waxy seal, boring a hole into Chaos. He pulled back his hand and watched as the small leak began to worm its way out. He followed the stream as it ascended to Iannin and eventually to Mount Sorrow where it slowly burrowed out and consumed rock until there was a vast network of rooms and halls.

Finally satisfied, the gorged bit of Chaos took the material it had consumed and formed itself a shell to disguise its true nature, and so that it could teach the True Way, the Way of All and Nothing.

Click to reveal.. (Explain!)
Reactionary: Kaer gives Keyai 'Predator-like' camouflage.

Action: Kaer creates an enormous school dedicated to the study of of magic in the now hollowed out Mount Sorrow. It is dedicated at first to the study and spread of Chaos magic (chaos magic is neutral, but generally considered evil), but soon becomes a center for all magics.

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Quaress - Fourth Epoch

Quaress watched as the children of the gods prospered and withered in turn, spread and clashed, or made common cause and was pleased at the possibilities that were presented.

She went among all the people across the face of Iannin in a horde of guises, sharing the secret magics of word and song, the skill to deceive or persuade with but a coy tongue or cocked hip. And she taught them to watch and listen, for every secret could be a weapon or a primer for a trap.

And those who took the lessons closest to heart gave homage to their multi-face patron, forming a clandestine following, a Scarlet Troop that owed allegiance to no single race or nation.

Click to reveal.. (Explain!)

Reaction: Spreading bardic and other performing arts and magic among all races, though they will develop and mature based on the mores of the various cultures.

Action: Forming the Scarlet Troop, an organization of Bards, Courtesans, and other performers of all stripes, as well as Foxes and various others, from all races, that also act as clandestine information-brokers, spies, fixers, and occasionally assassins. They are in actuality a hidden cult to Quaress. And though the Scarlet Troop is their unofficial name, they have a variety of other local names depending on location and the various races and cultures nearby.

Btw - I used the term 'troop' to subtly allude to Quaress as a 'troop' is a name for a group of foxes and the fox is both her symbol and an animal that had earned her blessings.

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