Sunday, August 26, 2012

Setting Premise

Being a post in which the GM rambles on about some of the premises behind the home-brewed setting of Last Rest...  More to come on the setting once the players and their characters have added to it...

  • The world is old, countless empires, kingdoms and even Gods have risen and fallen into dust.  Ruins are everywhere, the city of Last Rest itself is built amongst the ruins of an ancient and larger city.
  • There were once lots of Gods, but most are forgotten, though their temples still litter the landscape.  Some people are superstitious and avoid the ruined temples for fear of angering a forgotten god or demon, some avoid them because bandits are known to make their camps there.  Still others go out of their way to tear down ruins they feel are blasphemous or to explore in search of forgotten lore or lost treasures.
  • There are few non-humans left in the world.  The races of the Elves and Dwarves are old and spent, once they ruled vast empires, but now they mostly stay at the edges of the world.  Goblins and Orcs are slightly more common, and occasionally greats hordes of them come teeming out of the wastes and blasted areas of the world.  Whatever knowledge and power the four non-human races once had, there is very little left.
  • In more recent history, there was a tyrannical empire which rose around a millennia ago, far to the south of the Free Valleys of Last Rest.  This empire conquered and marched steadily north until it reached the city that is now know as Tribute.  It was at tribute that the empire was broken two-hundred years ago by Gerard, a hero from Last Rest.  
  • With the death of the empire, a period known as the Liberation began, where the old kingdoms of the empire re-asserted themselves.  Gerard's example spawned many knightly orders during this time and the once small village of Last Rest swelled into the city it is today as many from the Old Empire flooded north to freedom.  From some of the knightly orders and distant relatives of the Hero rose the Five Families of Last Rest, the nobles who took hold of Last Rest and from it rule all of the Free Valleys.
  • The Old Empire suppressed many of the old religions and during the Liberation they stayed forgotten as Gerard and his followers encouraged worship of the Three and tolerated the acknowledgement of the fourth, unnameable god.  The Three (and their unspoken brother) are:
      • Aton
        • Sun, rain, storms, weather and sky, diety, known
      • Tyson
        • Fire, iron, forging, crafts, diety, known
      • Inanna
        • Goddess of Life, birth, agriculture
      • Nameless God
        • Known but not worshipped god of death, darkness and the underworld.
  •  The Liberation ended 50 years ago with the rise of Ansgar, the Witchlord who quickly conquered the Old Empire and then stopped at the edge of the Free Valleys.  An unspoken truce between the Ashen Kingdom, as the Witchlord's empire is known, and the Free Valleys began, which has held to the current day, though there are always rumors that it will end at any time.
  • Places
    • Last Rest
      • The de facto capital of the Free Valleys, once a small village built amongst ancient ruins, it is now a large city built on top of Ancient Ruins.  Named Last Rest, as it was the last stop before a traveller went through the dangerous passes of the Ogrefist mountains and on to the Great Waste that lays beyond them.
    • Restport
      • Once a small fishing village down the river from Last Rest, with Last Rest's rise, Restport has become a bustling port, shipping goods down the coast to the ports of the Ashen Kingdom and west across the Boiling Sea to the Silver Isles and Far Kingdoms beyond.  Restport is often restive and rebellious and the rule of the Five Families of Last Rest sits uneasily upon it.
    • Tribute
      • Once the farthest fortress outpost of the Old Empire, since the Witchlord conquered it 30 years ago, it has quickly grown into a sprawling city, with a large slum of refugees from the Witchlord's conquests.  Tribute is also the farthest northern point of the Ashen Kingdom.
    • The Ogrefist Mountains
      • Once full of silver, iron, gold and copper, these forbidding peaks are mostly mined out.  A few clans of dwarves still lurk amongst them, but for the most part their rugged terrain and near impassable passes keep travellers out.  They form the northern boundary of the Free Valleys.
    • The Great Waste
      • A vast desert north of the Ogrefist Mountains, great caravans of grain are sent north by Free Valley merchants and traded for metals with the merchant cities on the other side of the desert.  It is not a safe journey, however, as fierce nomad tribes claim ownership of the desert and attack all but the largest and best defended caravans.

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