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Merindric Culture

Social classes from top to bottom:

  1. Nobles and merchant-princes (hereditary)
  2. Enchanters Guild (merit,intellect)
  3. The Watch (merit,martial)
  4. Merchants & crafters (heredity, with occasional new grants)
  5. Beggars, thieves, elves

It’s a mercantilist society, where city-states are ruled by a combination of land-owners and production-owners. Both have assigned themselves various titles, but the only real rank among them is wealth. (Rogue Trader dynasty style, with profit factors.)

The Enchanters Guild “own” the means of production of spells, with a massively dominating market share of spell research. The reason for this is that their structure is so over-arching that it’s usually possible to gobble up any competitors that arise, and just … Continue Reading

The Warwood Is Becoming Witchwood

Now that the lich-queen is establishing herself in the Three Towers, folk are leaving off calling the place the Warwood (which was a reference to the end of the Indric Age, kind of a long time ago now) and starting to call it the Witchwood, due to the…well, witchiness that is currently going on.

Eberron Imports

I have decided that rather than brew up a custom theme (Indric Builder), I am going to import directly the Artificer from the Eberron setting. It is almost exactly what I was going to invent anyway, and all the work is done — and hopefully reasonably well-balanced. In order to make this work the way I want, I am going to create an Artificer theme in the same way that 4e At-Will has been doing classes-as-themes for multiclassing.

The other thing I’m bringing in — athough I am going to meddle with it a little bit — is the Warforged race. … Continue Reading

Belief for alignment

Belief for alignment
This is one of a series of hacks I will be implementing in a D&D 4e game. Some of the ideas for this hack were stolen and adapted from articles at 4e At-Will.

Instead of alignment, which I have always felt is kind of vague and purposeless, we’ll substitute beliefs. Characters have one or more of them, and they can be “discovered” during play as well. The concept is to write down specific guides to action. It is perfectly fine to come up with any beliefs you like, but because such a wide-open intellectual space can make it … Continue Reading

Lesser and nonexistant races in Merindrea

There are neither demons nor devils in Merindrea, and never were. As much as a million years ago, a very human-like but pre-human race became geographically isolated, and their “devilish” features became pronounced. By the time migration brought them into contact with humans again they had diverged down a different evolutionary path. There is no compatibility between tieflings and humans or elves. They are a different species.

No one is surprised to see tieflings, and there is no supernatural overtone to their appearance (even in elvish religions there aren’t any malignant spirits as such). Humans look down on them much the … Continue Reading

Human races in Merindrea

Wide range of sizes, although none quite as small as halflings and none quite as large as goliaths. Skin and hair colors are most commonly along the brown and red spectrums (very light to very dark), although some humans go into the gray and bluish tones and this is not viewed as unusual. Eye colors are almost always blue and green, and sometimes gray, despite skin tone. Dark eyes are rare and are seen as a portent. Otherwise PHB rules.

All human races (including the ones below) are secular, and have no gods of their own. As such, divine-based classes are … Continue Reading

Elvish races in Merindrea

Eladrin, along with gnomes, are the hangers-on of an expired technological civilization that characterized the Indric Age. They are not nature-lovers, and worked hard to suppress the worship of the Forest Lord in the early Indric period (a.k.a. the Old Indric Age). Humans don’t know them by the term “eladrin” and instead call them interchangeably “elf” or “gnome.” They keep themselves apart from human civilization and try to hold onto their steam-powered scientific magic.

Like all elvish people, however, they were deeply religious and worshiped many elvish gods. A wide range of major beliefs came and went during their hey-day. Even ostensibly secular … Continue Reading

Tales from the Warwood

Birmus Blump and Zieza Blump are up from Picaree, trying to make the enterprise fail. Campo knows about their presence and is manipulating to thwart their efforts.

  • Birmus thinks he can use the lich-queen to his purposes.
  • He’s backing Swanzano, a captain in the City Watch, against Burrick.
  • Swanzano will require “safety measures” that in fact draw the lich-queen’s attention to expeditions into the Wood. The bar to go out is set higher, permits are required, and those that do go out are in greater peril.

In some respects it was a mistake to remove their leader (though the rewards, yet unclaimed, are nice). … Continue Reading