Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Dwarves of Martapa

So everybody knows dwarves are those stout warriors who carry axes and stand strong in the face of danger, right? Well, true, but my dwarves are a little more three dimensional then that. Sure, their military ability is beyond measure and most do use axes, but they also are great sailors, having the biggest fleet of ships in all of Martapa. This includes the fleet of the Empire of Ariella. They are fine woodworkers so their ships are works of art as much as functioning ships. They are also fine weavers, producing textiles every race upon Martapa seeks out.

Dwarves, both females and males, are around four feet in height and bare a darker skin. Hair color varies, usually one color more prominent in a particular clan then another. Eye color also varies, though granite and slate gray are common. Men bare long beards decorated with beads and other little trinkets, and women usually have long braids. They wear stout cotton tunics (both females and males), heavy pants, leather boots which go to the knees and flop over, and usually a thick leather belt to carry their various tools and weapons.

Dwarves live underground in large warrens of stone so they can be near mining nodes of one type or another. There are settlements above ground who cultivate the timber needed for the ships and boats they make, as well as ports where the ships are made. Also to produce the wool and cotton to weave with. They are ruled by a King and are broken up in Clans. Families train their young in their profession, making for generations of the same crafter in the same compound. Oh, so I forgot to mention Humans life for around 60 years. Dwarves can live up to five hundred years of age, so it is a long time to prefect their craft.

They live upon the "Dwarven Islands" as so named by the other races. They call them the Isles of Taniger (The dwarven god). Each island is ruled by a designate of the King, and thus are responsible to the King. Every dwarf, whether female or male, are required to serve a stint as a tunnel guard and everyone is trained in one weapon (at least those who can use one).

Families vary in size and make up. Dwarves have on average three children. Depending on the craft it will depend on how many people live in a compound. Weavers will have more extended family then engineers. Those of more military stripes will have large extended families in one area so those family members who are not serving in the military can help take care of family who have members in the military as well.

Possible classes for dwarves would be warrior, cleric (because you have to be healed to keep fighting), and thief. Mages are possible, but they are very battle orientated. I would give them the axe skill for free (regardless of class) and maybe a crafting skill for free or half price. I would add to Strength and especially Constitution, but take away from Charisma and/or Intellect. Just depends on how your system is set up.

Dwarves, for the most part, get along with the other races, taking everything humans do with a grain of salt since they are so short lived. They use to have a connection with the ancient elves, serving as guards for the royalty, but that died out over the centuries for a reason they will not say and for the fact the ancient elves eventually died out.
Tomorrow: Wood Elves

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Humans of Martapa, Part VII

The humans of Ariella are just as diverse as those in the north, though culturally they are probably more homogeneous. The eastern 3/4 of Ariella is ruled by the Empire of Ariella and the tall, proud people who are the descendants of a expedition from the west. They are black skinned, black hair with brown or black eyes. They stand a little taller then the average human on Taina. They wear togas, with pallas defining those of the upper crust and of the military, or simple, no sleeve dresses for the woman, with pallas of their own.

The military wear short togas with chain skirts, plate breastplate, with sturdy greaves and bracers. They also wear the typical Roman Legionnaire helmets, right down to the plume (we like to call them crested They wear sandals, since it is warm down in Ariella, which lace up to the knee.

The people of the Empire are very religious, taking especial care to honor Catiana and Targon. They will feel insulted if a God is slighted in any way and will challenge the person right then and there if they feel it is that bad of an insult.

Families can vary in size, but male children are prized over female children (not that families don't love the female children, the male children carry on name and family pride). Usually only the core family lives together, though extended families live close.

The one big difference between this part of the world and others is the Empire keeps slaves (just like the Romans). Their entire commerce is based on this structure and what allows them to expand to other areas.

The people of the Empire are patterned after the Roman Empire, with every man over the age of 18 having to spend 2 years in service of the Emperor. So all men over this age have some weapons training. Classes which would be appropriate for this regions would be warriors, clerics, mages who tend toward the battle aspects versus research, and rangers who work as scouts. Strategy is paramount to the people of the Empire and all those serving in the military have had some training in strategy, so think about that and a weapon proficiency for a free or reduced cost for your characters. If you want to change from a mainstream human I would give Constitution and Strength, but take from Wisdom or Charisma (this because they are blunt and to the point, not that they are uglier)

The other humans of Ariella are small pockets of humans who are olive skinned, lithe, smaller then the average human, and have dark hair and eyes. They dress in poofy pants and oversized, button up tunics with long sleeves, as well as sandals. They are a peaceful people who tend to meditate on the ways of the world and leave others to themselves. I would equate them to the East Indians in appearance. They are tiny, but wise about the world and their families are huge, with one couple having on average 7 children over their life times.

They would be ideal for mages, clerics, and monks (if your system has them). I would take from Strength, but add to Intelligence or Wisdom.

That is it for my humans. After I have described all the races briefly I will go back and do history for each race and subrace.
Tomorrow: Dwarves

Monday, June 28, 2010

Humans of Martapa, Part VI

So the people of the plains of Taina live in cities, but very Native American in appearance. I would probably equate them to a mix of the Pacific Coast Native Americans and the log cabins of the Cherokees. Their cities have wooden palisades, versus stone, because despite living on the drier side of the Tsalagi Mountains, there are many patches of large timber.

These people are dark brown skinned, usually with black hair which even the men keep long. Brown and black eyes are common, with clothes made more out of leather, then cloth (though they wear cloth clothing as well). They are tall, lithe people who take pride in their athletic abilities. These people bare no beards and like elves seem incapable of growing them.

Family groups live in small sections of the city or in villages, these family groups including a mother and father, their grown children and those children's children and perhaps even more. There are no castes, and it is hard to tell the Leader of a House from a common farmer some days, they mingle so freely. Bloodlines are tracked, usually through the mother's side, but they mean nothing to a person's standing. A person has to make their own way in the world.

Classes which would be appropriate for the people of the eastern plains would be ranger, shamans (if your game has these), clerics, fighters, and thieves. Survival and use of a bow would be good bonus proficiencies if your system has them. Even classes who can't use bows normally might be offered the chance to purchase a bow ability.

They do not judge a person by the origins, but on the person themselves. They prefer to be left alone and like the simple life, though that does not make them simple.

Roleplaying Tip of the Week: Write up your adventures after your group has played them and take notes during them. It seems a straight forward kinda thing, but many GM's don't do so. It helps you remember what twists and turns your people take and little side notes for yourself your players may not have found. Happy gaming!
Tomorrow: The humans of Ariella

Friday, June 25, 2010

Humans of Martapa, Part V

The people of the House Tayke are an isolated population within Tridon. Unbenownst to most of the world the people of House Tayke came from a distant island to the east of the Areillan Empire. They resettled on the east side of the Tsalagi Mountains to save the population they could when their own island was destroyed. Because of this the majority of House Tayke is much different in appearance then most of the other Houses.

The people of Tayke are shorter then the average person in Tridon, most around five foot in height. They have a pale complexion, though with black hair and dark eyes which slant slightly, reminding those of Martapa of the oval eyes of elves. The older men have long beards and woman like to pin their long hair up in fanciful braids and buns. Most men keep their hair in a short pony tail and the women like to keep their hair long. They dress more in robes, even those who are not mages, made from a fine material called silk, though other fibers are used. Pants and shirts are used as well, though billowing and baggy. Embroidered fabrics are also common.

These humans live in large extended families and their structure makes the oldest male of the family the patriarch, and thus in charge of everyone's lives. Females are still equal (which in most human societies they are), but very much protected from the world, so they don't seem as free. There is a caste system, strictly defined, though not frowned upon as much as in the south western part of Tridon. The fates placed you in the caste you are born to, it is your job to rise above you situation.

Classes which would be appropriate for the House of Tayke, would be warriors, mages or clerics. These people are very founded in history so a bonus history skill for free if the class does not come with it, would be appropriate. You also might allow some form of Martial Art, though they would have to still buy it if your system calls for buying weapon skills or proficiencies. If you want to change from a mainstream human I would give a plus to Intelligence or Wisdom, as well as Agility for they are very dexterous. I would take from strength. They are also very mechanically inclined and if your system allows for tinkering with small mechanical things, allow them to take this for free.

They find all of the other humans as children, though more in a protective parent way, then as a degrading remark. Their civilization was (and still is) more advanced then the rest of Tridon and want to help the rest of the world settle into peace and harmony as they once had.

Roleplaying Tip of the Day: So where do you game? My husband and I have gamed everywhere, a table, in a dorm room, on the front room floor with the kids. Find what is most comfortable for you. All the planning in the world can't make a good campaign if you and your players aren't comfortable where they are playing.
Monday: The Humans of the Eastern Plains.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Humans of Martapa, Part IV

On the eastern side of the Tsalagi (pronounced jah-la-gee, Cherokee, to those who speak my great grandmother's native tongue) Mountains is where the Black Wizards of Shaniko reign supreme in my High King's Sword series. But when the Kingdom of Tridon was at its height it was the home of many of the Houses of Tridon. The humans on this side varied from those on the west side, though a few of the Houses were similar to those on the west side. There are two major ethnic groups of humans on the east side, the people of Tayke and the people of the plains.

Humans of Tayke are Japanese in appearance and a good portion (though certainly not all) of their culture. Humans on the far eastern section of Taina are more Native American in appearance and somewhat in culture, leaning toward Lakotah and Cherokee nationalities.

I haven't spent as much time on this side or this pre-history, so over the next few days I shall flesh the people out and hope to find a good history and culture for them both!

Roleplaying Tip of the Day: The Internet. So when I was just out of college roleplaying circles were saying the Internet would kill roleplaying. I think a family, kids, and career sort of killed it more for me. I believe you can use the Internet to increase your roleplaying. As a mother I don't have time to sit down to game for 4 or 5 hours straight (as it is I have to take my World of Warcraft time in 10 to 20 minute hits), but I sure can respond to emails. Right after my second child my husband and I were in real need for a roleplaying, but we knew no one who did it in this new town and are friends who roleplayed had spread to the four winds of the country. So we decided to do "play by email". I would write a small blurb of description, set up a scene, then send it off. My players would send me back what they wanted to do and then I'd jam it back together and then send it back for the next round of stuff. Sure, it took time...but if my players were on top of things we got a few good hours of roleplaying in a week. Now adays you have twitter, instant messaging, and even games which allow you to play online together with your own adventures! Use the Internet to keep that roleplaying going, even if you can't physically be together. You may not be able to share a pizza, but you can share the fun!
Tomorrow: Humans of Tayke.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Humans of Martapa, Part III

So here we are, in the southwestern part of Taina. The people are blond or brunette, pale skinned and most bare the blue eyes which mirror the color of the sea. They are more lithe then their northern counterparts, though a stout fellow here or there can be seen. Clothes are are thick wool to stave off the chill of the ocean breezes, since most major Houses are situated along the coast. Dresses are conservative, and men wear doublets with billowing shirts beneath. Hats with long feathers for the men are the fashion, along with shoulder length hair, loose or in neat ponytails. Woman wear the hair in fanciful braids or loose, depending upon their lot in life. Loose hair usually means they are wealthy and have no need to worry about their hair getting in the way of their work.

They talk with a bit of an English accent, heavily along the coast, but for the most part their High King's Speech is your typical American English equivalent. This is also the trade language, so many of the other mortal races learn this along with their native language.

The major Houses (thus major cities) of the southern reaches are Greenthorne, Vandez, Bloodhelm, Weatherworn, Pathfinder, Cole and Brightwater, all of which are port cities. Fishing is very important to these cities, along with farming and some timber from the more northern of these southern cities. Also, trading with the Empire also brings in good gold.

Here the families are smaller, usually three to five children, and usually there are few extended family living with them. The oldest will usually take in an elderly mother or father, but sisters and brothers usually have their own homes. Here people are in castes, the poor consisting mostly of farmers and servants, those of moderate means being business owners or merchants, and then the nobility.

Classes which might be appropriate from this region would be swashbucklers, something which might be equivalent to a knight, bards, thieves, and mages (both magic users and clerics depending on your system). Let me make a quick clarification here. In my world there are no "clerics". All people who can use magic are called mages or wizards (people are only called wizards if they worship or draw their magic from Kahalla). Those who are devoted to a particular God are given the title Mage. These are your clerics. Clear as mud? If you want to change stats form a mainstream human in your campaign world I would give them a bonus to their agility and charisma, maybe even intelligence. I would take from constitution and strength though, to balance things out.

The people of the southern reaches find their northern neighbors ignorant barbarians and thus find them in disdain, even the nobility of the north. Give a minus to interaction rolls if a southern reaches person interacts with a northern reaches person they do not know. Don't worry about such things if the people know each other.

Roleplaying Tip of the Day: Food. Okay, how many of you have ordered in food while roleplaying? I see all those was my groups thing, around midnight when the college specials would spring to life like magic. Use this to your advantage. Have props of food for your tavern and around the campfire scenes. Do a potluck with a stew and bread along with your "mead". It will add to the atmosphere and everybody's tummies will be nice and happy. Happy roleplaying!
Tomorrow: Humans of Eastern Tiana

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Humans of Martapa, Part II

In the north of Tiana and west of the Tsalagi Mountains are the northern Houses of Tridon. These hardy individuals are large, strong people with red or dark hair, though blond is also possible. They tend to be pale in complexion and wear at least some bit of fur here or there upon their clothes. Most of the men grow beards not unlike dwarves, decorating not only them, but their hair as well with beads, small, hollow bones, and braids. Everyone, even children as young as five, know how to use at least a dagger as a weapon, since these people are always at war with the ogres and other darkly inclined creatures that roam the north. Even the wildlife can cause one to fear for their life.

Clothes of the north are sturdy, sometimes of leather, other times of good, stout wool. They are usually decorated with fanciful creatures or designs. Darker colors are preferred, though bright colors are used for weddings and other important events.

The Major Houses (and thus cities) of the north include Calabay, Goldleaf, Varanath, Eton and Merryweather. Greenthorne is a little further north then Merryweather, but their people, since they are on the coast, appear more like the people of the southern reaches in both appearance and culture.

Culture in the north is very clannish. People are not broken up by caste, but rather how they are related to one another. Commoners play with royalty with out a second thought. In the north the focus is on surviving the environment and creatures, not jocking for power. Protecting the Clan's honor is more important then most everything else in the north.

Agriculture and forestry are very important, as is fishing. Calabay houses the largest fleet of merchant and fishing vessels and make the finest ships in Tridon.

Families living in the same home consist of a mother and father, their children, one or both of their parents, and even brothers and sisters of the mother and father. Large, extended families under the same roof are not unheard of. Usually three to ten children per married couple are the norm.

Classes which might be appropriate from this region would be fighters, rangers, and thieves. Druids and mages could come from this area, but they would be rare. If you want to change stats from a mainstream human in your campaign world I would give a bonus to strength and constitution, but take from intelligence and perhaps even charisma. Characters should start with the ability to use a weapon of some sort (though axes would be the most common). But their starting money should be less since the northern regions barter more then they use coinage.

The people of the north frown upon their southern counterparts. They find them soft and unable to survive the rigors of true honor. The people of the north worship Sarjon and Shade, as well as Tinaka. Other Gods are worshiped, both light and dark, but these are the most common.

Roleplaying Tip of the Day: Character descriptions. Okay, so I like descriptions, places, people, what ever. But if you can get your players to describe their characters, not only can you work the descriptions into your "flavor text" your players can describe what their characters are doing much better. "I swing my sword" sounds so much better when the player says "I swing my scimitar to try and block the blow before it hits my new bracers." Little things make a game so much more fun!
Tomorrow: Humans of Southern Tridon

Monday, June 21, 2010

Humans of Martapa, Part I

So lets begin with the most numerous of the races on Martapa, Humans. Humans are the most diverse and adaptable of all the races on Martapa. They are independent thinkers, strong users of magic, and worship all of the Gods. They also differ greatly from region to region.

Martapa has two major continents, Tiana and Ariella. The northern continent, Tiana, would be you equivalent of say Ireland, northwest America, and the plains of North America all wrapped around by your typical northern hemisphere coasts. The southern continent, Ariella, is a mixture of Africa and Australia (just depending on where you are). Ariella is by far the biggest, but Tiana is where I spend most of my story time, thus it is by far more flushed out. And thus, so are the races.

The humans of Tiana vary by region. Tiana is separated by a large mountain range in the middle, Pacific northwest/Ireland region on the west, plains on the east side. On the west and to the north would be your more Ireland region. Here is the home of light skinned, red and brown haired (and lack of a better term) barbarians. They aren't really uncivilized, but they are the most hand to hand trained, hulking humans of the Kingdom of Tridon. To the south lays your Pacific Northwest type people. They are lithe, blond and brown haired, blue eyes are common and these people would bring to mind your knights in shining armor type of people. On the east side of the mountains you have a lot of Native American looking people (though in the time of my book there is a lot of western looking humans over on the east side) and a small pocket of Japanese looking people.

To the south is the Empire of Ariella and free pockets of humanity. The Empire covers nearly two-thirds of the continent, starting in the east, and the people here are black skinned (though of varying hues) and black haired. To the west are free pockets of humanity who live in free cities amongst the other races of Martapa. These people appear Indian, with olive skin and dark hair.

I think I have covered all the basic humans, tomorrow I shall delve into the barbarians of the north!

Roleplaying Tip of the Day: Dice. Always important and can always be a trip up when it comes to making it through a gaming session. Ask before hand if a person has particular dice for a particular die roll. My hang up was I had a specific die for initiative (it rolled lower), but my GM knew that and would tell me to roll again on my "Initiative die" if I didn't. This way if you know which one a player uses, they can't say, "Hey, that was my damage die, not my initiative die," and try to get a lower roll. It will speed up play and no body gets to cheat on their rolls.
Tomorrow: Humans of the far north

Friday, June 18, 2010

Races of Martapa

So now that we have met my Gods, the driving forces behind Martapa, let's meet the people who populate my exciting world of Martapa, shall we?

So my world has many races, with diverse cultures and behaviors. I like building worlds and probably could do that all day long instead of writing, but that won't eventually get me published. Here is a list of the races I have (though to be honest, I might miss one in this list) I have Humans, Wood Elves, Ancient (or Winged) Elves, Dwarves, Akicitia, Tsula, and Half-Elves (though there are probably mixed race mortals of all the races). In the vague histories of my world there were Small Ones (halflings in most campaign settings), but they disappeared some where in the past for some unknown reason to the people of Martapa.

This does not include other intelligent "monsters" such as centaurs or fairies, because for roleplaying purposes I am calling races of men those which you should be allowing your players to use as characters.

My races vary from area to area (except Dwarves, they are only located in one are of Martapa) and when I delve into each race I will try to expand into the culture and looks of each area.

Roleplaying Tip of the Day: Reward your players for a well thought out background. Nothing big, a small, extra start off item, a sub-plot of their own, something to let them know you appreciate a good background. It adds to the roleplaying and makes your players become very attached to their characters.
Monday: Humans of Martapa, Part I

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Wesa, Goddess of Animals

Wesa, Goddess of Animals, is the twin of Iktomi, God of Nature. Though twins are an infrequent occurrence amongst mortals, it was unheard of among the Gods. They are both quiet, unassuming Gods, but Wesa can become fierce if she feels her animals are being exploited. She has nothing against mortals using her animals, as long as they do so in a responsibility manner. Trophy hunting is most certainly frowned upon and she has been known to put a stop to such things herself. She appears as a female Akicitia with a staff and in robes. Her favorite avatar is an Akicitia in Ariella named Desertbloom.

Some generic roleplaying information is as follows: Her symbol is a roaring lion, her Mages wearing robes or the outfit of a huntsman or Warrior. They use staves, bows, and slings.

Wesa's alignment (If your system calls for this) is Neutral. Nature, and animals, are neutral as is life and death.

Wesa created intelligent animals, such as the Great Lions and other "animals" who can think on their own.

Wesa's followers include druids, ranger, farmers and ranchers.

Wesa's Mages are to help animals and to help people see how to properly use and care for animals. They usually live in the wilds or near farming villages and help heal the farm animals or forest animals there. She has a temple in Stormvale, but mostly she has small shrines in the wilds. Her Mages will try to put a stop to animal abuse with words first, then actions next.

Wesa gets along with most of the Gods except Furere and Kahalla. The reason she hates Furere is unknown.

Roleplaying tip for the day: Borrow historic nations for your own use. In my novels I have modeled most of the human nations after some historic nation from our past. It gives you a frame work to use to flush out your people. As an example, for my Empire of Ariella I have modeled them after the Roman Empire. There are differences, of course, but I have the martial aspect wrapped in there and the expansionist needs of the Empire. Use what already is and not only will it help flesh out your world, but make it easier on yourself in the process.
Tomorrow: The Races of Martapa

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Vates, God of Bards

Vates is the God of Bards and Minstrels, spreading music and storytelling everywhere. Vates saves the knowledge of past people and stories of heroes long gone and shares them with the world. He is a merry soul who spreads cheer and joy where ever he goes. He dresses as a flashy young man of varying colors and always bares a lap harp or pair of pan pipes. His favorite avatar is Tristan Copperdragon, an instructor at the bard college in Calabay.

Some generic roleplaying information is as follows: His symbol is a gold harp. His Mages always know how to play an instrument and most know how to play the harp or pan pipes. They carry rapiers as their weapon of choice.

Vates alignment (if your system calls for this) is Chaotic Good. He brings joy and happiness but he is very chaotic in his actions.

Vates' followers include bards and minstrels.

Vates created satyrs.

Vates' Mages are to bring music and storytelling to the masses. They keep the histories and spread news. If a Mage is particularly brilliant at playing music Vates will personally come to visit the person while they play. Their temples are usually music guilds and places of historic learning.

Vates despises Dasa because she uses things of beauty and twists them. He has no love for Kahalla, but dotes on Aiyana, because with love, good music is sure to be around.

Roleplaying Tip of the Day: Know your players. Do they like fantasy? Space Operas? Do they like long drawn out plots or short and dirty plots? This will make a difference. The better you know your players preferences the better your game will be.
Tomorrow: Wesa, Goddess of Animals

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Tinaka, Goddess of Healing

Tinaka is the Goddess of Healing, a Goddess everyone prays to every now and again. She works hard to heal, relieve pain, and to ease the pain of dying. She teaches her followers to help even the enemy die as pain free as possible. Healing is a wonderful gift and can always be withheld from those who do not deserve it, but she feels even the cruelest of people should not be in pain. She is a woman in conservative gossamer robs and is of mild features and manners. She is the most soft spoken God of the pantheon, by far. Her favorite avatar is Grace Featherblossom, a healer at the Healing College in Stormvale.

Some generic roleplaying information is as follows: Her symbol is a mortar and pestle. Her Mages wear thick, blue robes with white trim. They carry staves.

Tinaka's Alignment (if your system calls for it) should be neutral. Healing knows no bounds of good and evil. Though they tend to be with more light aligned people, Tinaka's Mages will not allow dark aligned people to die in needless ways.

Tinaka's followers include healers and midwives, though most people pay her heed.

Tinaka's Mages are to bring healing and aid to those who need such things. They are also supposed to train others to be able to help others in their times of need. Their temples are usually places of healing and learning of healing. They turn no one away, save for the very evil. Even the Gods of Chaos and their Mages will not harm a Mage of Tinaka. They are a neutral group and thus no one wants to anger someone who can heal them.

Kahalla and Lokar are the antithesis of her powers, though Lokar respects her abilities and will often leave her followers alone.

Roleplaying tip of the Day: So for me, I like to write out a plot outline (it's probably the author in me). This way you can figure out where your characters need to go and send them in that direction without making them go that way. You can predict, most of the time, all the strange paths your players might travel and plan accordingly. Plus, it is easier to work in weird things your players are no doubt going to bring up.
Tomorrow: Vates, Gods of Bards and Minstrels

Monday, June 14, 2010

Sominare, Goddess of Bad Luck

Sominare is the Goddess of Bad Luck, Ill Omens and Stolen Dreams. She knows bad luck can come in any form and she knows and loves them all Any bad dreams or dreams which slip through people's fingers are due to her. She reveals in the misery of mortals and the effects there of. She is always dressed in thick, black robes, black hair and pale skin, ravens always following her. Her favorite avatar is an old crone named Sophia who lives in the dark Mountains of Ariella.

Some generic information is as follows: Sominare's symbol is a coin with a frowning man. Her Mages wear dark, somber clothing, usually robes, and carry a small dagger.

Sominare's alignment (if your system calls for it) would be Chaotic Evil. She works against the best interests of people and she is random on who she bestows her wishes.

Sominare's followers include jilted lovers and people who revel in other people's miseries.

Sominare created mind fogs.

Sominare's Mages are charged with bringing bad luck to those around them. Maybe by spreading lies, by causing buildings to be robed or burned, maybe wagons to be stolen. There are temples to her where people come to stave off bad luck by giving donations. Most Mages of Sominare are solitary and live in caves or huts in the wilds.

Sominare opposes Pezuta, since she is the Goddess of Good Luck, and she opposes Kahalla as well.

Roleplaying tip of the Day: Maps! Everybody loves maps, even for the simplest things. If a player can see, visually, what they are looking at it adds to the flavor text you might be describing.
Tomorrow: Tinaka, Goddess of Healing

Friday, June 11, 2010

Sircarius, God of Assassins

Sircarius is a dark and brooding God, but one of those integral Gods in my story. He and Aiyana are half siblings (different fathers), but in his heart of hearts he cares for her more then any other God. Because of this, the God of Assassins and Thieves has a heart of gold when it comes to Aiyana and her followers. He thrills in the hunt and the rush one gets from the chase. Though most of his followers also pay heed to Pezuta, Lady Luck, they beg him for guidance of their weapons to strike true and for locks to be easy to pick. He is a man dressed all in black, his cloak always billowing, a poisoned dagger at his side. He is darkly handsome, right down to the black goatee. His favorite avatar is Dread, an assassin who roams the world.

Some generic information is as follows: His symbol is a mask with a dagger and a pouch of gold. His Mages are all trained assassins or thieves and wear the attire appropriate for that profession. They usually carry daggers or short swords.

Sircarius' alignment (if your game calls for it) is chaotic evil. He is a darkness upon the world, his motives never clear.

Sircarius' followers are thieves and assassins of every race.

Sircarius created no races.

Sircarius' Mages are charged with training assassins and thieves and acquiring wealth. His temples are dark and brooding, but beautiful in such darkness. Such places are usually covered in traps and bare great treasure troves.

Sircarius gets along with most of the Gods, though he frowns on Sominare because his followers need good luck. Kahalla is not amongst his favorite and he loves Aiyana dearly. He would do anything she asks.

Roleplaying tip of the Day: Flavor text. This should be a no brainer, but is it? Some groups like to know what everything in the room looks like, others don't. But sometimes a bit of good description can get a campaign running in the right direction. If you describe everything equally the hook isn't obvious and sometimes that makes a campaign all the more fun.
Monday: Sominare, Goddess of Bad Luck

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Shade, Goddess of Battle

I have to admit, Shade, Goddess of Battle, is one of my nods to one of my very first Dungeon and Dragon characters. Back when drow hunters were all the rage, I had one too and she was death with swords. Thus, so is Shade. She is the overseer of battles and skirmishes, honor more important then the outcome. She is like her father, Sarjon, and enjoys a good skirmish, even as the bigger battle rages all around. She rewards knights and individuals who show honor upon the battleground. She wears platinum, gold trimmed platemail with two longswords (though sometimes it is a bastard sword, or a long sword and shield) and rides a black charger named Midnight. Her favorite avatar is Evelyn Stoutfire, an instructor at the battle school in Stormvale.

Some generic roleplaying information is as follows: Her symbol is two knights charging at each other. Her Mages wear chain or platemail, carry swords and/or shields and are martial fighters as much as magic users.

Alignment, if your campaign calls for it, is true neutral.

Shade helped create dwarves and minotaurs, giving them their martial nature.

Shade's followers include Knights, swashbucklers, and mercenaries.

Shade's Mages are charged with helping spread martial training. They set up battle schools in most large cities and have their largest in Stormvale. Their temples are training barracks and grounds.

Shade has no issues with most of the Gods, but dislikes Lokar because death ends a good battle. Kahalla is her only true foe.

Roleplaying Tip of the Day: Keep records. As silly as this seems, you might consider photo copying your players' record sheets after each game. I had a friend who, without fail, would manage to lose his sheet between most sessions. It's so much easier then having them look for a sheet and slow down the game. Plus you have a true record of what they have on them when they mention they take out that bolt of slaying demons they used last sessions.
Tomorrow: Sircarius, God of Assassins

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Molestus, God of Pain and Misery

Molestus is the God of Pain and Misery and though most people despise such things, there are people who revel in pain. Pain is life, death is painful, even childbirth is painful. Everything is a pain to endure and overcome. He has few followers but he is part of everyones life. He appears as a torturer who carries several implements of torture. His favored avatar is Darius, a information gatherer, of the Ariella Empire.

Some generic roleplaying information is as follows: His symbol is a bloody pair of manacles. His Mages were the garb of a torturer and carry a whip.

Molestus' alignment (if your system uses it) is Chaotic Evil. He revels in others pain.

Molestus created the poisonous lizard folk of the desert plains.

Molestus' followers include torturers and people who revel in pain of others.

Molestus' Mages are charged with spreading pain and misery, their temples usually torture chambers where ever they might be found.

Molestus is devout to his parents, Dasa and Lokar, because they bring great pain with death and loss. The other Gods do not like how he interferes with mortals, but know everything can have pain associated with it.

Roleplaying Tip for the Day: Try moving away from the norm when you are creating your own world. It doesn't have to be large things, but something which adds something to your world. Take my dwarves for example. My dwarves are master sailors. How many settings with dwarves make them out to be poor swimmers?
Tomorrow: Shade, Goddess of Battle

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Iktomi, God of Nature

Iktomi and Wesa, in a strange twist, are actually twins. Thus why he is the God of Nature and she of animals. He keeps the balance of nature between life and death. Plants and animals grow, produce, and die. Death is natural, but so is birth. He stops the exploitation of nature, but keeps in mind people need to live as well. He is a robed man with a trimmed beard and scholarly in appearance. He carries an oak staff and is often accompanied by a bear or a great wolf. His favorite avatar is Scar, a human druid in the Tsalagi Mountains.

Some generic roleplaying information is as follows: His Mages wear the symbol of the great oak tree. His Mages often wear green or brown robes and carry staves. They also often have an animal companion.

Alignment (If your system calls for it) would be true neutral. There is a balance between life and death.

Iktomi created water sprites and earth sprites

Iktomi's followers include druids, rangers, farmers, and ranchers, though most people at least give a nod in his direction every now and again, especially if they are traveling through the wilds.

Iktomi's Mages are charged with helping the natural world stay in balance. They allow hunters and loggers to use forests, but not over use them. They help with growing crops, help wounded animals and cure diseased areas if it overburdens the people/animal populace. Normally he has no temples, save in Stormvale, but has small shrines dedicated to him through out the wilds.

Iktomi lets the Gods go about their business, unless it tips the wilds from one direction to the other too much. Furere is too unpredictable for him and he despises Kahalla.

Roleplaying Tip of the Day: Theme Music! As silly as this sounds, it helps, whether writing or roleplaying. When I write about a particular character I play their "theme music". It helps me focus on them. If you are trying to work on a plot with an ongoing main villain, pick theme music. Even use it while you are roleplaying. Sometimes battle music is good during tension in your game, or even light music is good for those touchy-feely spots in your campaign. I like the idea of using music (drinking music if you can find it) in a tavern. It adds to any flavor text you might want to share.
Tomorrow: Molestus, God of Pain and Misery

Monday, June 7, 2010

Furere, God of Storms

Furere is not actually even mentioned in any of my books, that I can remember (after so many edits it's hard to remember such minor things), but he is a necessary cog in my pantheon. What pantheon doesn't have a good storm god to mix things up? As lord of storms and lightning he can change the weather at whim. Most of the time, he maintains the status quo, but sometimes he likes those big storms which make Hurricane Katrina look like a small gust of wind. He actually stole this aspect from Tymara, but she doesn't seem concerned and holds him no ill will. He appears as a cloaked figure, wind always playing with his hair. His favorite avatar is Jax Windbringer, a sailor out of Ariella.

Some generic roleplaying information: His Mages bare the image of a lightning bolt and they wear robs of the grayest hues. They prefer cutlasses or long daggers, as sailors would use.

Alignment (If your system uses such things) is Chaotic Evil. He is unpredictable and he refuses to stick to any laws such as the Balance.

Furere created sea serpents.

Furere's followers include sailors mostly and some druids if they are focused on controlling storms.

His Mages are charged with spreading ill weather. They number few, but are powerful. He has no temples (save in Stormvale) and usually an older Mage will take on a younger one to replace him when the time comes.

Furere is loyal to no one, but secretly would like to see Kahalla (his sire) win. He figures he would live when the other Gods wouldn't if Kahalla took over the world. He respects Dasa only because she is his mother. Wesa, Goddess of Animals, hates him and he hates her in turn, but only they know why. (I have been thinking on this so if you desperately need this info and would push me along on figuring it out, let me know).

Roleplaying Tip of the Day: Back stories for NPC's (Non player characters for you non-roleplayers) are a good thing. Though you may never use the back story it gives you a better feel as to how that particular NPC reacts to your players. And making back stories is just darn fun!
Tomorrow: Iktomi, God of Nature

Friday, June 4, 2010

Aiyana, Goddess of Love

Aiyana is the Goddess of Love and Innocence. Often she is called the Innocent or the Child. It isn't because she is naive but it is because she is so joyful and full of love. She is the protector of all things innocent and love which is completely pure. She fights against hatred and corrupt use of love. Sometimes, if a loves pure and innocent she will bless the couple with a long and happy life together. She is my most used minor God and important in many of my plots and subplots in not only my High King's Sword series, but my earlier attempts at stories as well. She prefers to be a dark skinned, dark haired beauty who is young and naive in appearance, right down to the white gossamer robes. Her favorite avatar is Elizabeth Caprin, a gypsy girl who is constantly searching for a perfect, innocent love.

Some generic roleplaying information is as follows: Her Mages wear a symbol of a unicorn, sometimes accompanied by a rainbow. Their robes are long and flowing and often the women bare flowers in their hair. They train in the staff, but often do not carry them.

Alignment (If your system calls for it) is Neutral Good. She breaks some laws to keep the innocents protected, but on the whole she is a force for good.

Aiyana created sprites.

Aiyana's followers include young lovers, gypsies, and romantic bards.

Her Mages are charged with protecting innocents and spreading love, though not carnal love. Their places of worship are usually bright and cheerful with lots of gardens. It is said only those of good or in love can enter the temples.

Roleplaying tip of the day: So when you are creating your own pantheon of Gods don't be shy about looking at the Greek or Roman Pantheon for inspiration. See what sort of Gods and Goddesses abound there and they will help you gain a frame work for your own Pantheon. After that, add your own Gods to suite your needs.
Monday: Furere, God of Storms

Thursday, June 3, 2010

The Minor Gods of Martapa

The minor Gods are many, but I have only managed to flesh out a few for my novels. If, after I've described the ones I have, you need some other minor God for that roleplaying priest that hasn't found his or her niche, let me know. I'll get right to work on it. My purpose of this blog is to flesh out the world for me as much as it is for you, the roleplayer. Now the name "minor God" is a misnomer. They are only minor Gods in the sense they came after the original nine. They were born after the nine came and created the world of Martapa, but in power and standing they are no less then the others. All are children of the original nine Gods and Goddesses, with parents that may or may not correspond with their light or dark status. Aiyana would be the most notable of these mixtures as her mother is Dasa, a dark God, and her father is Targon, for all purposes a neutral God. The minor Gods and Goddess I have fleshed out are as follows: Aiyana, Goddess of Love and Innocence, Furere, God of Storms and Winds, Iktomi, God of Nature, Molestus, God of Pain, Shade, Goddess of Battle, Sircarius, God of Assassins and Thieves, Somniare, Goddess of Bad Luck, Ill Omens and Stolen Dreams, Tinaka, Goddess of Healing, Vates, God of Bards and Minstrels, Wesa, Goddess of Animals. Many of these show up in my books, several don't even get mentioned, but they were fun to create for my friends and family when I took them for tour through my world in a roleplaying campaign.

Roleplaying Tip: You may wonder where I picked up all these weird names. I find a Latin Dictionary is a wonder as are native languages. Iktomi means spider in Lakotah, Wesa means cat in Cherokee. Sircarius, (spelled Sicarius in Latin), would mean Assaissin. Don't be afraid to broaden your horizons when it comes to your language use, it adds spice.
Tomorrow: Aiyana, Goddess of Love

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Tymara, Goddess of the Sun

Here is another Goddess I have not expanded on in my books, but as most good fantasy readers we like to have everything planned out, even if it is never used. Tymara is the Goddess of the Sun and Elements. Often she is referred to the Bright One. She is the last of my nine major Gods and one, if given time, I should explore more. She rules the elements and keeps them in balance, protecting the avian creatures of the world, especially the Ancient Ones, or the winged elves. She is a woman shrouded in light and thus her face is never visible. Her favorite avatar is the High Mage of the Winged Ones, who is always shrouded and nothing is visible except her trim hands and her bright, silver wings.

Some generic roleplaying mechanics are as follows: Her Mages are always wrapped in bright robes, her symbol a bright sun. Her favored weapon is a mace.

Alignment (if your system calls for it) would be Chaotic Good because the elements are never peaceful, but there are laws to obey.

Tymara created winged elves, griffins, all intelligent flier (save dragons) and intelligent elementals.

Tymara's followers include the winged elves, intelligent elementals, and more primitive sects of most races.

Her Mages are charged with understanding the elements and explaining what they are about to the lay people. They are also to protected all winged creatures, whether intelligent or not. Her temples are often bright and open with much gold gilding to make them shine. Griffons often roost in her temples and are thought to be the messengers of Tymara.
Tomorrow: An explanation of the minor Gods

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Taniger, God of Dwarves

Taniger, God of Dwarves and Forging, is your typical, everyday dwarf. He is grumpy, he works hard, and protects what is his with every ounce of his being. His people are crafters and he takes pride in craftmanship well done. Thus why he is so proud of the dwarves for they are fine artisans and blacksmiths. He values innocence and his dwarves, though withdrawn, are often found protecting those who follow Aiyana or are innocent all in themselves. He looks like an older dwarf, usually in armorers attire, though sometimes sailors clothes. His favorite avatar is an armorsmith in Astadi by the name of Kon Boonsteady.

Some generic roleplaying mechanics are as follows: His Mages wear the attire of blacksmiths, right down to the thick leather aprons. They carry warhammers as their weapons and they bare the symbol of a warhammer upon their person.

Alignment (If your system calls for such things): Lawful Good. If every there was a God who followed the rules, it was Taniger. Which makes his friendship with Targon all the more mystifying.

His followers include most, if not all dwarves and craftsman of any race.

Taniger created dwarves and a race of small ones (this would be halflings in most worlds), but the small ones died out a thousand years before the Chosen. The reason is unknown.

His Mages are charged with finding knew ideas for crafts and trades. But their biggest responsibility while with a group of dwarves on a patrol or mission is healing and repairing armor. Though good craftsman, they are also excellent fighters and battle is just important to them. Their temples always include a forge and usually small painting/crafting areas. Proceeds from crafts and items are used for upkeep. The temple themselves are usually very defensible and made of stone.

He gets along with all the Gods, even the dark Gods, save Dasa. He loves innocence and tries hard to protect Aiyana and Pezuta from harm. And he will fight to his last breath to stop Kahalla, if need be.
Tomorrow: Tymara, Goddess of the Sun