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Tuesday, May 30, 2017

How gods got drunk and created Feywild

Long ago, in the lands of Sivobog, there lived a halfling archpriest named Joton Bellyfull. During his life, he approached the gods and posed a question, a question that had unforeseen consequences of great degree. "Are we allowed to get drunk? Or smoke tobacco? How about doing drugs, gambling, or enjoying carnal pleasures?"
The gods, empathizing with the halfling and his nation for merely desiring fun, decided to tell Joton to sacrifice them as much of the named stuff as he could amass, and that they would tell him next day. After Joton left, the gods agreed together to try everything he named to see how bad could it be.

Finally, the sacrifice was gathered, and then they started to drink. They drank for a long time, but soon they found that alcohol they had amassed was not enough to get them drunk.
That is when Eldur, the god of dwarves, decided to take an ooze and infuse it with alcohol. "We have to get drunk somehow. This way, we will have gelatinous cubes we can consume to get more alcohol into our blood." The other gods saw what he did and also made creatures made out of alcohol. Sui, the overgoddess of planes, made water elementals of alcohol. Vittor, the god of elves and gnomes, made water weirds that are also made out of alcohol. Tierra first made bushes she named spiritberries, but then went all out and created a new kind of tree with coconuts that contain alcohol on the inside. She, a little bit tipsy but none the less proudly, named these trees palmeisters. The gods then tasted the fruits of their hardwork, smoked a lot, enjoyed some of the carnal pleasures... and that's when it all started.
For the sake of reading ease, all the dialogues will be translated from the drunken gibberish.

Feywild

It was Vittor who begged Sui to make a new plane of existence just for him. A playground that started as a copy of the Material Plane that he could sculpt as he wished. Sui kept disagreeing until the midnight when she changed her mind. She was just about to make the new plane of existence, when the Eldur stopped her. "Whoooaaah, stop there. Stop it right there, girl! What shape do you want to make it?" Sui says that she wants to make it into a sphere, a planet just like Material Plane, since it's supposed to be a copy of Material Plane. Eldur, after eating four more cubes, went over to Vittor. "You really want to go with this... boooo-riiing shape?? Here, let me show you something!" Eldur drew into the air illusory lines that looked something like this.


"You just place the south pole on top of this sphere here, and north pole on the bottom so that it touches with an empty plane. Then, for each point on the planet, you do a line like this. Where the place intersects with a plane, that place should be on a plane." The other gods were very impressed by apparent knowledge of Eldur. Vittor and Sui did not fully understand it, being in the state they were in, but Sui did just as she was told. Soon enough, they had a plane that would for Earth look something like this.

Just imagine an icy crust that is Antarctica on its edges too, going away from the center infinitely.

Vittor ran to Eldur, saying that there is a problem. "This plane... it's infinite. Most of it is ice now, what do we do? And where exactly is the south pole?" Eldur stroked his beard, and waved his hand. "South pole does not exist in this world. It's infinitely far from the north one, so just... be glad you got one pole. As for the plane being infinite, you're welcome. That means your playground is infinite in size." Vittor looked at the creation and was happy.
He invited the gods into the realm to show them how he creates stuff there. He started by creating fey, the kind that he always wanted to secretly make. He gave them a gift of reincarnation, keeping memories over lifetimes, easy way of shapeshifting, and he split their souls into pieces. That's when the other gods started to intervene. "Whoah, slow down! You don't want mortals who come here stay here forever, do you?"
"What? Of course I do! I love my plane." The other gods frowned upon this, seeing how it would steal all of their followers. Eldur tried to corrupt some of his fey to turn them dark, but Vittor slapped him on his hand. "No! My world!"
The two gods started fighting at that point. Tierra and Sui, not knowing how to end their conflict, offered themselves to the two irritated gods. After getting more physical satisfaction, all four gods cooperated in further creating the Feywild that we know today, a land of life for a reason that's wild enough to make parents cover their children's ears when bards tell this tale. Hence the name of this plane - Feywild. The touch of theirs even wrapped it, making its flow of time irregular in relation to other planes of existence.



The next morning, gods felt a thirst they could not quench, until they started to drink again. And they kept drinking and enjoying all the things they enjoyed that night for the next six days and six nights, forgetting about Joton the whole time, until Sui sobered up and recalled his question. What exactly did gods do during these six days is unknown to most mortals, since most of the bards stopped listening after the wild Feywild part.

Answer and consequences

The gods fixed themselves up and went through this together. Apparently, after making the Feywild, all of them were so numbed that they did not remember anything they did afterwards. This is one of the few things in the history that terrified the gods, and they all agreed on the answer they'll give to Joton.
Joton was enjoying a breakfast when the gods called out to him. "Joton, we have your answer." Joton, very surprised at that, asked the gods "Where were you? It has been three years!" Gods dismissed the question, and instead gave the halfling an answer: "None of you shall ever get drunk, smoke tobacco, gamble, do drugs, or fornicate without intending to make a child. Spread these words to the rest!"

Everyone soon found out what happened, and mortals kept laughing at it. The gods got drunk. Of course, the gods regretted it a lot. They kind of missed those days, but swore to never do this again. Eventually, they managed to fix some of their misdoings by moving them into Feywild, and changed most of the rumors over the course of years, turning it into a celebration - a day when the gods drunk just some alcohol and made the glorious realms of Feywild. Favoured races refer to it as "Spirit Day".

As one would expect, the rumors spread between the unfavoured races too. Those were not persuaded by the opposite and to this day remember the original tale as it is. This is why unfavoured celebrate a holiday they call "The Nights of Regret", during which they play gods - drinking, drugging, smoking, mating, gambling, and playing with fey in a naughty manner.



This is also why Joton Bellyfull has his own hero card in the Worldwar game. He is the one cause for the most embarrassing week of known history for gods, by asking them a good question. What is a Worldwar game is a topic for another day though. Until then, thank you for reading, and have a nice day!

Sunday, May 28, 2017

Meet the gods of Sivobog!

In order to understand the world of Sivobog a bit better before I begin to post articles about it, I suppose it would be useful to introduce you to major beings that rule it.

Sadly, not as awesome as these fellas, but my gods would think they are far better. Thanks to Tales of Alethrion, I like to think my gods too have illusory symbols above their heads. Then again, they do not show up on the Material Plane, so who knows...

There are four gods that created this world. For the most part of history, they directly interacted with the world using their avatars, but last few years, they became quiet and more reserved than ever before.
Generally, no creation myth for the whole world or gods themselves is considered correct. There are many, some of which seem pretty normal, while other seem very strange. One could say that the creation of this world along with its multiverse is the most well guarded secret of the gods.

Eldur, god of dwarves, halflings and arts

Eldur is the most violent of the four gods, and a god of many things, just like all others. Food, drinks, fun, but also traditions, mining, and one of his most well known domains - crafts. He created the dwarves and halflings, as well as some oozes. Only one of his avatars is still alive - the dwarven king, who once fallen during a war, but is now ressurected, King Ironfist.

Followers of Eldur wear ritual robes with striped pattern. Dwarven priests put a lot of effort into braiding their beards, while halfling priests shave their feet. Their temples have octagonal shape with altar in the middle and seats all around it. It is visited by all followers on a 5th day of each month, new years day and on Tuesdays.

Eldur's symbol consists of Hammer, wooden spoon and sickle

Sui, overgoddess of planes and planar beings

Sui is the mysterious goddess who, according to some, created other gods. What is definitely known is that her domains are life, death, light and planes, and she created all the planes of existence and their denizens - from celestials to fiends, mutes, undeads, elementals, and everything that does not reside in Material Plane (except for fey). She never had a need for an avatar, and is undoubtedly the most powerful of the gods.

Temples dedicated to Sui are so rare that most people do not even believe they exist. Most of the Sui followers thus worship her from their homes.

Sui's symbol is a half-closed eye in a cloud.

Tierra, goddess of shardminds, silva and nature

Tierra is the kind and gentle goddess of nature, elements of Material Plane, and generally goddess of protection. She created races of shardminds and silva, and rules them with her last alive avatar - the Sylvan Tree, from which all silva are born.

Tierra's temples do not have any particular shape. That is because she prefers natural temples, like caves, grooves or lakes. She is celebrated on Mondays, Saturdays, on both equinoxes and solstices.

Tierra's symbol looks like a crystal flower with five petals.

Vittor, god of fey, elves, gnomes

Vittor is the noble god of elves, gnomes, goblins and fey and Feywild. His domains include knowledge, trickery, trades and civilization. His avatar takes the form of Koopman clan of the goblin nation, and just as all other gods, his other avatars are now gone.

When there is a temple dedicated to Vittor, it is said that the entrance should be on the southern side, and it should have a rectangular shape, with the eastern and western walls being about 1.62-times larger than the northern and southern walls. The altar is on the northern end of the temple, surrounded by three pillars forming an equilateral triangle, one behind the altar and two in front. Vittor is a perfectionist with high demands on his followers.

Vittor's symbol seems to be an open palm behind gibbous moon.



And that's about it. Now that I'm done with explaining background, let's get creative! Thank you for reading, and have a nice day!

Saturday, May 27, 2017

Settings to work on

To make contents of this blog easier to understand, I should include explanations for what each setting is about, a short description that can be read by newcomers.

Sivobog

Gods rule the world of Sivobog, they ruled it ever since they made its creations. Never able to let go of it, they got angry when more beings started to sprout out, beings they did not make. This is why all the races and monsters of this world are split into two groups - Favoured, ones that gods love, and Unfavoured, ones gods hate. Each group's races used to cooperate within groups for the majority of world's history.
However, something strange happened relatively recently. The avatars of gods stopped receiving commands on a daily basis. As a result of that, a war broke out between the Favoured races, that stopped to care about Unfavoured ones, who finally got chance to develop. And then, another Moon appeared out of nowhere.
This is my current setting I'm planning to play my games in, and thus will contain most of the spoiler warnings for my players. Let's see how much it changes over time.

Lasklo

Experimental fantasy setting, where there are no gods. Clerics exist, but nobody knows where do they get their power from exactly.

Charodey Academy

A magical school located in a demiplane of its own, inbetween multiple worlds. It's a place where not only wizards, but also sorcerers, warlocks, and possibly other classes can study magic and even more. This demiplane is big enough to house the school, but also a forest and a city that has things necessary for surviving like way to produce food and other things of the same sort.

Grimwick

Grimwick is heavily inspired by Ravenloft, basically me trying to reinvent it for my own purposes. It's composed out of a set of demiplanes, each being ruled by a person who made an unfortunate wish, that turned into a whole story revolving around them. So, a Ravenloft, but with Fey instead of Undead, and about fairy tales instead of horrors.

Earth-2020 (E2020)

Year is 2020. Earth is just as you would expect it to be, just as you know it. Well, except for the fact that apparently, magic and fantastic creatures are real, they were just hidden here and there. Sometimes, magic interacts with modern technology, and that creates interesting combinations.
(Note: It's made up in 2016/2017, so please - if during that time something in the society or technological progress changes in a major way, which I'm almost sure it will, bear in mind that I can't see into the future.)


I know there may be more settings, some of which will be just a one-shot equivalent of my worldbuilding, while other may actually join this list. There is also a chance that some of these will get less attention than the others, so I can't promise anything.

Thank you for reading, and have a nice day!

Friday, May 26, 2017

On volerite, deducanos and floating islands

Confession: I am not a geologist, biologist nor physicist, so some of the terms and assumptions used here may not be correct. This is just a theorycrafting, so please do take it with a grain of salt.

It is a known fact in the scientific community of Lasklo that the gravity is not the same everywhere. There are tiny differences in gravity here and there, and it's fairly irregular. Researchers have been wondering about the reality of that for a long time, until they figured out a definite answer. It's a rare mineral they refer to as volerite. But what exactly is volerite?

Volerite (also called volitium by some, but that name never caught on in the wizardly community) is a mineral inherently magical in its nature. It is repulsed by any other material, with the sole exception of other deposits of volerite. It has a neutral attraction to itself, which allows it to cling together much as any normal material would cling to itself. Imagine like helium, but a rock - if it's not held by anything, it will just float up and away, forever to fly through the universe.This explains the irregular gravity that's present everywhere - volerite can be deep underground, but it's too weak to make any significant changes to the gravity on the surface. Well, most of the time anyway.

One note worth mentioning is that volerite's "negative mass" makes weapons, armors and objects generally made out of pure volerite... interesting. I don't feel like delving into physics, so I'm gonna move on.

Deducano

This rock forms deep underground, somewhere around the layer where magma forms, maybe slightly above it. If a volcano forms in a place where there's lot of volerite (which has a low probability to happen), there's a high chance that when a volcano erupts, it will spew volerite instead of/along with lava and ashes. Such volcano is refered to as "deducano", or "volcannon" by the commoners who think it resembles a natural cannon more than a regular volcano. When such volcano erupts, it's a sight to behold... well, if you get away from lava and ashes that is. The volerite that flies up is an interesting sight that becomes even more spectacular when some lava is attached to it. If there's too much lava, the volerite won't fly up and will instead try to force its way out of the lava before it solidifies. The rock that solidifies before that escape, trapping the volerite inside, is quite a curiosity, and not that uncommon around deducanos - it seems to be an ordinary rock, that's a lot lighter though. And it falls slower. Neat!
What's even more interesting is when a perfect mix of volerite and ordinary rock fuses together. This fusion - named “floatstone” - is apparently weightless, floating wherever one puts it. Which brings us to...


Floating islands

There's a very slim chance for a deducano to spew a nearly perfect mixture of rock and volerite, which had been fused together under the pressure even before the release. When this happens, we get what's commonly known as floating islands. Their top is covered with a layer of volerite that's trying to desperately escape the planet, and their bottom is covered with ordinary rock that's trying its best to fall. Perfectly balanced, these rocks are trying to escape forever one another, but end up just floating in the midair.
Over time, variety of things can fall onto the surface of floating islands. Water when it rains or snows, dirt and life when a tornado happens, and maybe more stuff. It's worth to mention that even though there's a layer of volerite on top of the island, the weight of the planet is too strong for all the stuff that gets caught on top of the flying island to be repulsed and thrown away. At best, it would cause the gravity on floating island to be weaker. That means that the island gets everything it should need for a life to develop. Exactly what biomes could form up there I won't detail, but I suppose the islands flying really low could have forests, while those that fly high above the clouds could have deserts because of lack of water and strong winds, arctic environment because of cold, or both at the same time.

Alloys

Since humanoids are crafty and smart creatures, they've wondered what alloys they can make using volerite. It's very hard to make a volerite alloy even for someone who is an experienced smith, especially for those that worked just on normal alloys all their life. Special tools and cooperation of several smiths is required, and only two successful alloys are known of as of now - fixite and nequitine.

Fixite

Fixite is an alloy of volerite and adamantium. Adamantium is a heavy and strong material, but also inherently magical one. When it mixes with volerite, the resulting alloy turns out to be a material that's immovable. As you may already guess, this is what infamous immovable rods are made of. But how does it actually work?
Actually, fixite is not really immovable. What instead happens is that fixite is immobile... when it gets a magical pulse of sorts. Think of it like a semiconductor - the resistance of a semiconductor decreases as much as its temperature increases. Fixite is very similar to that - it requires a minor magical pulse in order to be fixed in the field of gravity it's located in. When an immovable rod is made, this magical pulse is the button one has to press to fix it in place. It's a magical effect even smaller in power than a cantrip, and so it's useless for anything besides fixing the rod in place.
Researchers believe that there must be some way to mix the two materials to make what they call "perfect fixite", a material that will stay fixed in place without requiring a magical pulse. However, nobody has been able to produce that yet. Some artificers have begun to suspect that it may be just a false speculation.

Nequitine

Nequitine is an alloy of volerite and mithril. Mithril is light and easy to manipulate material, and - just like adamantium - mithril too is magical by nature. When it mixes with volerite, it too becomes a semiconductor-like material, but when one activates this one, it instead does not stop moving. Similarly to fixite, there is also a speculated "perfect nequitine" that would move indefinitely, never stopping and never requiring a magical pulse either.
Some of the uses for nequitine are evermoving rods, that allow ships to move indefinitely, arrows that fly at all times (until they are stopped by something sufficiently strong or break), and sources of energy.

You may now think that we've gotten to an age-old question, a paradox of sorts. "What happens if an unstoppable arrow hits an immovable rod?" Well, you see, no alloy of these metals is perfect. The answer thus depends on the smith, quality of alloy, and lots of other unseen factors. One of the two would break or otherwise give way, that's definitely given. That is also a reason why wizard society thinks that only one of the two speculated “perfect” volerite alloys can exist - because if both existed, a paradoxical state would emerge.

Blog's revival

Welcome back to this blog of mine!

This was a busy year for me, and so I'm glad to come back here. I'll confess about something though - writing settlements that can be plopped anywhere one could need is harder than I imagined. Possibly even beyond my capabilities.
That's why I was thinking about redirecting the blog's intentions. It's not that big of a change - it will just broaden its focus. Instead of writing just about settlements, I'll write about whole ideas that I may or may not use in my settings, and that can be used in your settings too. I was inspired by blog GoblinPunch and some other blogs too, that are sources of some great and creative ideas. And, since I sometimes too get interesting ideas, I decided to return to this blog.

I am not sure at all what will I write about in the future, but for now I can tell that there will be at least two kinds of posts - those for settings I'm trying to develop, and those about settings I won't work much on (setting-independent settlements fall into this category too). I have made some settings that are just one-shot settings and not really developed that much in the past on reddit, especially my posts about Demi Plane of Bears and The Dreamscape.

One note to my players - if you're here and recognize some of the stuff, please do not read posts that start with [Spoiler] or [Spoilers]. Thank you.

Hopefully it'll go smoother this time. Thank you for reading, and have a nice day!