Friday, October 30, 2009

More on Tombs of Hulkursag and setting

Before I get to the Tombs stuff, I wanted to say this - tomorrow, I'm running a Swords & Wizardry demo at Unique Gifts & Games in Grayslake, IL. It'll be from noon to 3. I have no idea how many will be out there, but I'll have my miniatures, my terrain and my quick start plus some old school stuff to show people. If you'd like to come play the Quick Start adventure, please come on out!

Now, for Tombs related stuff. Monday or Tuesday next week, I'll be sneak-peeking some art that the incomparable Mark Allen has done for the back cover illo. I'm up to 3 of the 4 pieces from this man and his work is amazing! I'm very lucky to have his services.

I am still working out the magic stuff in my head, on how to explain the differences of how clerics will be the "main guys" and magic users are going to be more demon-centric than anything else. So I thought I would talk about how demi-humans will fit into the picture.

In Sumerian mythology, the god Enki and goddess Ninmah, at the urging of the primeval sea goddess Nammu, created man to serve the gods and toil for them. Ninmah created six imperfect beings, which Enki decreed "fates" for. In an attempt of one-upmanship, Enki created up to two beings were also flawed.

In the Land of Two Rivers, 6 beings that Ninmah created form the basis of the major races: human, elf, dwarf, goblin, kobold, orc. The two races that Enki created are the basis of giants and nagas.

The humans, elves and dwarves are the favored races to serve the gods. Dwarves live in the hills and mountains while elves are a sea-faring race, found near the Persian Gulf, Mediterranean Sea and Black Sea as well as on the legendary Isle of Dilmun.

The orcs are also a sea-faring predator race - fighting the elves for control of the seas and rivers. The goblins oppose the dwarfs in their caves deep in the mountains. The kobolds are like hyenas - they are pests and vermin to man, living in small burrows and constantly raiding the cities and villages.

The giants are found all over, but they are not very numerous. What they do have is a whole lot of power, strength and fearsome abilities. The nagas are sorcerous and cunning, using the various races against each other to further their own aims. Like the giants, they are not numerous.


Anonymous said...

Interesting how medieval European religious stuff is never used for medieval European style D&D, but D&D based on other periods and times always tend to use the "real" gods, etc. Not a criticism, just an observation. I'm looking forward to the finished version.

Wilson Theodoro said...

The way you found to justify the existence of demihumans through summerian mithology is very, very nice.

Erin Smale said...

Very nice arrangement of these races, and justification of their attitudes and interactions. I really like elves as a seafaring race, explanation of dwarf/goblin conflict, nagas as a potential source of demonic magic, and kobolds as persistent pests. A lot of flavour for your campaign in a few short paragraphs.

Michael S/Chgowiz said...

Thank you for the kind comments!

@Anon - agreed! I always thought a dark Christian god ala King's "The Stand"'s Christianity would be an interesting take...