KINGDOMS is a Live Action Role Play that takes place in the world of Alteris. It uses its own unique rule system for gameplay, and those rules can be viewed here. But The world that the game of KINGDOMS takes place in has a long and varied history of gods, magic, wars, and contentions. This post will give a crash course in that lore, helping new players to learn how it all fits together, and where they can fit in as well.
ERAS OF ALTERIS
There are three main eras in the world of Alteris: The Dawn Era, The Fall Era, and the Modern Era.
The Dawn Era covers the period of creation, and the Age of Apotheosis (where some beings achieved godhood), yet most of that time is little more than myth, with much of the writings being either lost entirely, or of such antiquity that no one of the Modern Era pays them much attention. Most beings living in present day Alteris focus their historical attention of the ‘beginning’ of recorded history, starting with the Fall Era when the race of man settled into nations and ended their centuries long strife with the dragons, and each other.
The race of men were created by the Dragon God Sherrphoght, and were made to be a powerfully magical race. They were the first beings who could harness the power of magic to bend it to their will. This event is called the First Dragon War. Sherrphoght used the race of men to subjugate the scargs to his rule, until the race of man rebelled against him, and destroyed him. In retaliation for this act, the Dragon Goddess Tset created the hastu to fight on behalf of the dragons. This marks the beginning of the Second Dragon War.
The war between the humans and the dragons raged for eons, until eventually the ancient humans allied with the power of dark gods to overthrow the dragons. Through these pacts the hastu were weakened, becoming two separate elven races. This fracture of the hastu society ultimately lead to the victory of the humans in their war, driving the Dragon Gods to extinction in Alteris. The hastu, as well as the remaining gods, left Alteris to wage war against these dark gods in an adjacent dimension. As the gods departed, they took from humanity their awesome magical power, leaving the humans and the fordrin to war among themselves. After centuries of chaos throughout Alteris, a consequence of humanities pact with the dark gods, they eventually formed new nations and settled into the Fall Era, where they had to relearn their magical traits, and find better ways to deal with their problems.
The Fall Era is a period of eight hundred years taking place before the Modern Era. It is unclear how much time passed in the Dawn Era before the Fall Era begins. The general consensus is that the Dawn takes place over a period of eighty thousand years, with the creation of man by Sherrphoght taking place thirty thousand years ago. The period directly after the end of the Second Dragon War likely takes place over twenty-five thousand years, but again, there are little to no records from this period. The wars which ravaged humanity during that time also lead to the destruction of nearly all written records of those days, and most of what is known are only the stories passed on by word of mouth through the ages.
The nation of Silg came into being in the first century of The Fall Era, as did Udai. But the regions of Mul Debbon and Filenfōe have their roots in the Dawn Era, stretching back into the forgotten past. Many events took place during the Fall. Too many to mention adequately here. But a few key events are the Silgen Grok War of 115, the Silgen and Debbonese occupation of Filenfōe from 290 to 400, the first trade routes into Udai in 298, the return of the hastu in 312, the Trade War between Silg and Mul Debbon in 340, and the Magician’s Crusade in 798.
The Magician’s Crusade is of especial importance, and not only because it is the period directly before the Modern Era. In those days, a powerful dark magician named Hybris made a pact with the same dark gods ancient man misplaced their faith in. They granted him awesome power, and he drew a mighty army together in an attempt to conquer the world. He nearly succeeded, save for the efforts of the Hero Alkanet and his fellow adventurers.
The Modern Era begins after Alkanet destroyed Hybris, and brought the world into a new era of peace. The current calendar year is 821 ME. The modern world is comprised of four main countries and the archipelago of Tandavar to the north. The Countries are Silg to the west, Mûl Debbon in the center, Udai to the east, and Filenfōe to the south. At the beginning of the Modern Era the hero Alkanet, when their adventure was done, vanished into the Tandavar archipelago.
Alkanet left the land with one wish: that the nations work together instead of against each other. To honor this request, the lands still hold a tenuous peace between them. Each nation continues to be governed by their own counsel, and they maintain their unique cultures, and political and cultural intrigues.
There have been many revelations throughout this era. Mankind has made great strides in their understanding of magic, bringing the practice of spell casting back into use throughout all their lands. It has been a period of relative peace, save for a few civil wars in Mûl Debbon, and the continued political coups of Silg and Udai.
BEINGS OF ALTERIS
In the Modern Era of Alteris, the human race is the most common species. There are five races, altogether: the beast races of the scarg and grok, and the rare, enigmatic fordrin and hastu elves, and the humans. They can be found among every nation, both as friends, and as enemies.
Scargs are an anthropomorphic race, who have animal attributes, called Beasthoods. A scargs beasthood grants them animal features. They are highly magical in nature, being born of magic, and have a natural immunity to the effects of spell casting; however, this affinity prevents them from being able to summon magic to use in spell casting. In ancient times, many scargs achieved godhood, becoming beacons among Alteris. Scarg gods such as Elken, god of nature, Tamra, goddess of healing, and Grukscava, god of the hunt remain the focus of religious practice among many nations.
Scarg gods have made up the bulwark of deities for nearly all the beings of Alteris throughout history. A rare race, the Scargs tend to dwell away from the cities of other races, preferring the company of their own kind. Many Scargs have found themselves caught up in human affairs, as the human nations around them will frequently conscript the beastmen into their wars and contentions. They are prone to wandering the land in search of other Scargs, as they are so near extinction.
Groks have similar characteristics to their scarg cousins, but they are not of magical origin. They are born of flesh and blood in the egg; they are reptilian, looking very much like a hominid crocodile. Groks have thick hides to protect them in battle, like a natural armor, and live in communities of hunters called tribes. Their race generally worships Grukscava, father god of their race and patron god of the hunt. Groks who venture out of their tribes are usually doing so to obtain something of value to increase their standing within their communities.
Among Groks tribes there are no contentions for land or resource, as they see every Grok as a brother or sister. This isn’t to say there is no conflict. Small fights over mates, food, or possessions are known to occur, but these are usually settled in one on one disputes. Most disputes among Groks are settled with trading of verse, in a form of aggressive poetry. The first Grok unable to continue the rhyme against their opponent may either seek retribution through combat or concede. Groks have no natural sense of humor, and generally very little art other than spoken verse or tales of the deeds of their tribe mates
Fordrin are the ruling race over Udai. In ancient times their ancestors intermingled with the human race, but due to a magical cataclysm before the Fall Era they were burdened with a potent magical touch, that would burn their human counterparts on contact. After this cataclysm, the fordrin withdrew from the public eye, forming a secret society that hid in plain sight, controlling the hierarchy of the empire of Udai. Fordrin are therefore secretive, powerfully magical, and prefer the company of their own kind.
They are a people who seek knowledge not from myth, but from tangible records of the past. They do not worship the Old Gods, neither the new, but instead consider themselves cosmically minded, seeking truth from the nature of things as they are. They believe in the eternity of each being, an eternity linked to the energy which makes up all things. This belief system leads them to frequent inquiries into the sciences, engineering, and the deeper arts of magic, and has also influenced the belief systems of the human residents of Udai.
Hastu, much like their cousins the fordrin, are an enigmatic race. Their culture is largely split into two factions: one being fearsome warriors who practice Poek Pamatang, or translated, the Dark Hunt; they seek out dark magic and destroy it if they can, even across other dimensions. The other, larger hastu faction is more nomadic, abandoning their ancient practice of Poek Pamatang and instead forming tribes or adopting themselves into the human nations around them.
Their race once ruled all of Filenfōe hundreds of millennia ago, before moving into an adjacent dimension to wage war with the dark gods who lived there. Around thirteen hundred years ago, the hastu returned to Alteris to find themselves now refugees without a true home to call their own. Legends say the hastu were created by Tset, the Dragon Goddess, though few hastu continue to worship the Old Gods, preferring to create their own beliefs among their diverse tribes.
Humans have a long and varied history of war, enterprise, political intrigue, and a wide variety of beliefs. Native to all lands of Alteris, as they are a pioneering species driven by a deep, abiding need to explore. Their cultures vary according to their region of birth, but generally they are strongly devoted to their natal ideals and customs. Each human is unique in their habits and beliefs, even among a single cultural segment. Legends say the race of man was created by the Dragon God Sherphoght at the end of the Age of Apotheosis.
Humans are as diverse as the regions they occupy. While many other species have solidarity with one another, humans do not always find this same communion. Their national lines often act as battlefields, creating barriers to their bias. Hundreds of years ago, a human hero named Alkanet rose up and defeated a tyrannical human magician who sought to enslave all of Alteris. After that event, there has been a lasting peace between the human nations. This has not not absolved their old rivalries, however. There are four primary nations in Alteris: Silg, Mul Debbon, Filenfōe, and Udai, with the first three of them being ruled principally by the human race, and the fourth having many humans as citizens.
Throughout all the ages power has changed hands constantly. From the scargs ruling time back in the Dawn Era, to mans rule in the Modern. With the centuries of recorded history in Alteris comes centuries of stories. Too many to fit into a single article. If you want to know more, you can read the story so far in The Book of Lore: A Kingdoms Compendium.