Characters will start at level 1, but during the first session (maybe 2) will quickly move through to level 3. Please make your character as a level 1 character but be ready to level up your character to level 3 during the game.
Keep in mind it is a ‘low – medium’ magic world. It is not common for someone to have magical abilities. Depending on race determines how common it would be to you. Elves know and understand magic, Gnomes know some magic and understand certain principles, Humans are rarely gifted with magic, Dwarves avoid magic and dislike it and Halflings almost never are gifted with magic (arcane or divine). Even if someone does have access to magic, it is likely they will not move beyond 1st or 2nd level magic and would have a very restricted spell list.
Please note that below is GENERAL information about the races. You can use this as a guide but keep in mind that individuals vary greatly.
I have a few rules I play by that are different and I want to outline them now to prevent any confusion.
Hit Points – When you level up, you roll for HP. If you roll higher than the average HP for your class, keep your roll. If you roll lower than the average HP for your class, keep the average for your class and discard the roll.
Feats – I do not play with feats. If you have questions about this, please reach out to me.
Skills – The skills you choose for your proficient skills has an unwritten bonus: if you are proficient in a skill, you will not have to roll that skill as often for simple/uncomplicated tasks. Also, if you do not have a skill as proficient I may not allow you to attempt a roll in certain situations for complicated/difficult tasks.
As an example: If you choose ‘stealth’ as one of your skills to be proficient in, I will not likely have you roll to be stealthy in many out of combat situations. If you have any questions about this or how it impacts the game, let me know.
EXP – There is a party total of EXP, and it is the EXP that everyone is at. So if you miss a session or if your character does not participate in an event everyone will still have the same EXP at the end of the night. It is needed for the party to level at the same rate for the pace of the adventure.
Character Death – I don’t like to have people remake characters. If your character dies we will talk about the circumstances and how you will reintroduce into the game. Expect to not participate in at least one session as a player character.
Races: Human, Gnome, Halfling, Elf, Half Elf, Dwarf
Classes: All classes in the PHB are acceptable.
Backgrounds: All backgrounds in the PHB are acceptable.
Stats: Point Buy 27 points as outlined in the PHB (max 15 before racial, lowest 8)
Starting Gold as listed per class – items as listed in the PHB.
Deity Options: The deities are broken up by race and the pantheon is limited.
Human Deity – Pelor, god of the sun and healing
Elven Deity – Obad-Hai, God of nature
Dwarven Diety – Moradin, Dwarven god of creation
Gnome Diety – None (don’t worship generally)
Halfling Diety – None (Worship Pelor)
“All that Pelor’s light touches is our domain”
The stars have kept Pelor high in the night sky for the past 100 years, showing humans growth and conquest. The Old World is unified under the banner of the humans and for the first time there is peace. Collectively called the Kingdom of Man, other races should recognize the power and strength of man in this age. Where there was conflict, there is now peace united under one flag.
Peace has not been easy for the Humans to bring to the Old World. Other races did not share their views, but with time many have been brought in line. During this time of expansion, a conflict erupted with the Dwarven lands. Not recognizing the sovereignty of Pelor and the human King the Dwarves rebelled.
The Iron Stand began. Named for the spark that ignited the conflict. Dwarves stopped shipping iron angered over a new trade tariff affecting their north western outposts. Seeing the tariff as an abuse of power and placing an unneeded burden on their northern markets, the issue quickly became political. As the issue escalated, it became a war call to the people frustrated by the rule brought by the Kingdom of Man.
For 22 bloody years the rebellion went on. The Dwarven army marched and rebels of all races within cities utilized guerrilla tactics to target important areas. Despite the constant threat provided by the Dwarves as they marched and threats within the city, the Kingdom of Man was able to negotiate a peace treaty with the Dwarven Lands.
Those that appose war, let out a sigh of relief. Where those that felt oppressed by the regime were angered that the Dwarves had relented their attack.
It is clear to any who supports the Kingdom of Man that they would have won the conflict. The Kingdom of Man held back in the conflict to try and ensure peace. And while the treaty is neutral and doesn’t favor either side heavily, supporters know that the Kingdom of Man were the ones to win. And should the Dwarves choose to stand again….they will be put down.
To ensure the peace of the realm, of course.
During the Iron Stand humans fled the conflicts. It was during this time that the New World began to be inhabited. With the new settlements along the peninsula humans were able to ship goods around the southern peninsula to ensure trade could be completed from eastern cities to the ones along the southern coast. Previously the cities had used the river ways for trade, but they became heavily targeted during the war.
Now with peace returned, many wonder the fate of the cities and towns within the New World. Critics believe the cities will buckle now that trade does not nictitate the longer journey. Others suggest that new trade from the established cities could be a benefit to Kingdom.
Time will tell.
Dwarves are stubborn, frustrating and untrustworthy.
Elves are wise, caring, but can be trouble…keep your eyes on your coin purse
Gnomes are godless tricksters, avoid them.
Halflings are light hearted simple beings that are good workers, but not good thinkers.
“It is through our hands and will that earth knows form”
It may be years since Moradin graced the stars, but his presence is ever present in the ceilings of the vast underground Dwarven Cities. The Grey Beards maintain order, while the Green Beards maintain structure. The Grey Beards have long been the ruling class in the Dwarven Lands. Lands are locally by a Magistrate who is appointed by the Central Council who rule within the Dwarven Capital of Crol. These Grey Beards monitor trade with the world above and run other tasks assigned to a government (military, security, ect).
The Green Beards are named for moss they allow to grow in their beards. This moss allows them to dig more freely. They deposit the moss as they travel, and as it spreads it ensures that the newly created tunnels will stay full of oxygen.
The remaining dwarves fall into families which decide their role within Dwarven society. Families stick with an occupation and venture to purify their purpose in the eyes of Moradin. A cobbler, is not just a dwarf that makes shoes. They make shoes with the purpose of finding the perfect method and making the perfect shoe. As they move towards perfection, they move closer to Moradin.
Because of this desire for perfection, Dwarven society can be very slow moving as they do, redo, redo and redo a thought trying to ensure its perfection. Dwarven construction is not solid just because of a technique utilized, but because the plans were 20 years in the making and the architect planned, tested and struggled to complete the perfect version of his vision. And even still, what is left standing is usually a disappointment to the Dwarf who completed it. Seeing only the imperfections that must be corrected the next time.
During the Iron Stand Dwarves pushed back against the Kingdom of Man. The humans rushed the trade negotiations and did not stop to think of how they would impact future generations. It was amid the discussion by the local magistrate that they implemented and imposed tariffs that the Magistrate had not agreed to.
The result was a necessary response. Humans are too bold and move to fast. Their claims for worship are poorly constructed churches and cities that turn to rumble without maintenance. Their god looks down on their lands and despairs. So the Iron Stand became a rallying call to remind the humans of their place.
During the conflict it became clear the point had been made, and the dwarves accepted a neutral treaty that would ensure peace. After all, it was not their goal to wipe out all of the Kingdom of Man. Now Man should understand the power of Dwarven perfection and purpose.
Man has spread to Faydwer. We have an outpost near Port Odem. We will watch and ensure they do not disrupt this pristine land with their petulance.
Humans are petulant children that need to be reminded to slow down and shut up.
Elves are allies and friends…but they are friends with everyone so be careful what you tell them.
Gnomes are lost, avoid them.
Halflings have allowed themselves to be enslaved by the humans, it is a shame they could be so much more.
“Without a home, always home.”
Elvan caravans across the great continent, moving freely between lands bringing goods and song as they travel. Far in the past there was a great Elven nation, but little of it remains. The walls were broken down to make the great caravans, so that the Elven could be free to float the winds. In the hearts of the Elven people lives the will of Obad-Hai and believe they are living their gods will when they live simply.
A single caravan is usually made up of several families, but refer to themselves as a single family. The bond between elves within a caravan is extremely strong as each member has responsibilities that are necessary for the caravan to survive. Also, each family member must learn other skills so they can help others as much as possible.
Unlike the other races, Elves are seen as neutral. There are no records of wars with the Elves, and the Kingdom of Man doesn’t worry about them because of their disorganized structure. Additionally the teaching of Obad-Hai do not conflict with the teachings of Pelor.
As the caravans travel, they offer their wisdom to those that will listen. This wisdom is usually connected with the teachings of Obad-Hai and encourages those to release from greed and live life more simply and to care for one another. Despite how a caravan may sound helpful, they rarely directly help. Instead they listen and offer advice. They avoid directly becoming involved in situations, instead offering council to both sides of an issue.
Caravans usually have a large sail on them to assist their Oxen in pulling the carts. Because of this, it isn’t uncommon for the other races to refer to the caravans as land ships.
Life on a caravan is difficult and requires the family to pull together. Because the caravans try to live a simple life, they often give up things that would make their lives easier and instead see the struggle they endure as a part of Obad-Hai’s plan for them. And while a caravan will trade with different outposts, they do not keep the wealth and spend it ensure their family/caravan is taken care of.
Dwarves are friends, but may not heed our wisdom when they need to hear it the most.
Humans are friends, but they don’t seem to trust us.
Gnomes are friends, but they are lost in their work too much to hear us speaking…such short little lives.
Halflings are friends, but they can’t hear us over the sounds of their masters.
“Humans will shield us, guide us and show us the way.”
During the expanse of the Kingdom of Man it was clear that not all the work could be completed by Man. So the Kingdom expanded into Halfling lands and they became a part of the Kingdom. Little changed for Halflings, they now are provided with direction and are able to assist Humans with the creation of their empire. Halflings help with labor and serving the greater needs of Man.
Other races have expressed concern, and there are Humans within the Kingdom that view this relationship negatively…but it is rare for a Halfling to share this belief. They do not see their service as a restriction, because they remember the time before Man, and things were not good for Halflings.
Before the Kingdom spread across the continent Halflings had to always hide. The monsters, the rage, and the dangers of the world…it came for them. Their only asset was their size as they banded together to survive. And who helped them? None would come. Then the humans came, they helped them build walls. They showed them so much, and taught them about the light of Pelor.
Now there is peace. Now they live their lives safely. Now there is laughter and hard work! Maybe one day the other races will see the greatness of Man and Pelor.
Humans are the salvation of our people and our teachers.
Dwarves are stubborn and should understand the greatness of Man! They are so selfish.
Elves are kind and fun, but they go away so quickly and so rarely there for us.
Gnomes take from the Kingdom of Man! Godless things, they should leave the Kingdom alone!
“No place in the heavens, no place on the earth. Lets blow it up and keep whats left!"
Living on the northern islands of the New Lands, Gnomes have been pushed out of all other lands. Their disorganized structure doesn’t allow them to rally against the Kingdom of Man, and the other races do not mesh with Gnomes chaotic nature.
So they turned to pirating. Without their own lands, they took the sea. Now on a collection of small islands the Gnomes are ruled by a Pirate King, who changes frequently. Gnomes avoid allegiances for long and rarely extend them beyond their shipmates. A Gnome pirate ship is the bane of any port. Gnomes are reckless and wild with their attacks, destroying more then what they loot.
But, like Elves, Gnomes are naturally magical giving them a unique advantage in combat. Gnome ships usually contain a spell caster they will use to harass the enemy ship or port.
But not every Gnome can be a pirate, others live in on the islands offering goods/services for those that are brave enough to enter Gnomish lands.
Gnomes have long been searching for where they came from and why they exist. No God in the heavens claims their creation and the Elves speak of a time before Gnomes. Some rumors suggest Gnomes and Halflings are related, but neither believes this possible. Gnomes put a great amount of research and energy in attempting to find their creator. Although, it is doubtful it would be a peaceful reunion should they find them.
Because many view Halflings as distant cousins, Gnomes have a positive regard for Halflings who many believe are under the thumb of Man.
Humans are the law that needs to be broken.
Dwarves ? What are Dwarves? Who cares about them?
Elves are too serious about being light hearted.
Halflings are our brothers! We can free them and they will sail with us!
The adventure is taking place is the human dubbed ‘New Lands’, or the elven named land “Faydwer”. The New Lands is a large peninsula that is off the east of the main continent. Humans have only created permanent settlements in the New Lands a few generations back. The area was originally overlooked by humans because of its difficulty to reach, however during the Iron Stand humans fled to escape the war and established settlements along the coast. The adventure is taking place in a plains region of the south eastern portion of the New Lands surrounding the human settlement of Port Odem.
The war ended about 60 years ago, and tensions are still high between Dwarves and Humans. As such, Port Odem has managed to maintain steady trade. The Kingdom of Man still fears restricting their trade to the waterways of the continent.
Population : 19,000 – 97% Human 2% Halfling 1% Other Races
Government : Although Port Odem is ruled by an autonomous group of merchants, the merchants have placed a group in charge called ‘The Authority’. The military organization known as the Authority, is mostly made up of officers from the Kingdom of Man, who after the Iron Stand, sought employment outside the army. The Authority runs Port Odem and oversees the port, reporting back to the merchants that own the city. Only one Merchant family that runs the city, the Baywin Family, actually lives within Port Odem. The rest live on the mainland and rarely visit.
Defense : Port Odem is surrounded by a 15 ft tall granite stone wall that is 20 feet thick built from the stones that make up the area around Port Odem. The Port also boasts a militia of 750 that serve and defend the city. The soldiers that make up Port Odem are highly trained.
Commerce: Port Odem hosts many merchant ships pandering odds and ends while they move their cargo. You can find most things within Port Odem, but it may take time and prices highly vary day to day.
The main export of Port Odem is a specialty fruit called “Iron Apples”. Not iron or an apples, the circular fruit are grown in trees in the surrounding towns
Adventure Hook: When creating your character have a reason to be IN Port Odem, and have a desire to be staying in one of the surrounding towns or within the Port itself.