Mulmoran - The Land the Gods Forgot
The Mulmoors, those gray and fog-shrouded lands where humanity first laid its hands and feet upon the continent's damp soil, are no stranger to odd happenings. It is a region steeped in ancient tradition and superstition, where sly Rumor plants the seeds of fear and distrust in the native populaces. In reality only a precious few can claim to have consorted with spirits or escaped the drooling fangs of a true monster, for such things are a rarity in the world and most often keep to themselves. Yet even the strangest of tales might hold a grain of truth, here in this hoary land.
Listan, a peaceful town whose upper reaches are shrouded in pleasant chimney smoke year round, has become the site of a recent series of mysterious disappearances. Witnesses claim to have seen a great dark shape bounding across the rooftops in the dead of the night, a burlap sack just big enough for a body or two slung over its broad shoulder. A reward has been offered to anyone with information regarding the culprit, and even greater coin awaits anyone willing to venture beyond Listan's walls to do something about it.
Whether seeking coin, justice, or someone dear, you have found yourself drawn to Listan's plight. The old retired Captain of the Guard is the one you seek, and what he has to tell you may very well mark the beginning of a strange and dangerous adventure. The question is, are you up to the task?
If you've read this far, then welcome! This is my first attempt at setting up a proper system game on Elliquiy, and I've made a rather risky decision to go outside the norm instead of settling back on the tried and true 3.5e, 4e, and Pathfinder. Those experienced in those systems will find Fantasy Craft
to be quite familiar in most respects, and very different in others. It is an extremely modular system that allows for an impressive range of characters and settings, which is what drew me to it in the first place.
For those who are unfamiliar with the ruleset or do not own the Core Rulebook or Adventurer Companion, please PM me
and I'll help you out. The same goes for anyone requiring help with character creation
At first glance it might seem easy to get overwhelmed by all the crunch at your disposal. Don’t be. Only a few sections should concern you as a player in this game.
- Chapters One and Two detail character creation, classes, skills, and feats.
- Chapter Three concerns divine and arcane spellcasters. Though a handy read, those not planning to delve into magic need not concern themselves overly much with this material.
- Chapter Four primarily lists gear available to your character. You can safely ignore the sections on Coin, Lifestyle, Reputation/Prizes, and Renown/Favors. It will be up to you to foster relationships and put aside coin as you see fit—I’d rather that be handled organically through roleplay, rather than mechanics.
- Chapter Five explains combat, and is therefore crucial to learning this system. There are a few important changes here from the systems you might be familiar with from 3.5e and Pathfinder, so please do not hesitate to ask if you have any questions about them. One that will immediately jump out at you is that armor grants Damage Resistance, rather than increasing your odds of avoiding an attack.
- Chapter Six and Seven are largely DM territory. The Paths detailed on page 310 are crucial for anyone playing a divine spellcaster, and Cheating Death on page 384 concerns your last defense in the face of a grim and ignoble end.
Of course, I can't exactly expect you to start thinking up a character without a lick of background, now can I? Below you'll find information pertaining to the setting that your characters would, for the most part, be expected to know. More or less information might be available depending on your class and character background, all of which can be settled by sending me a PM.
The country of Mulmoran is a place of extremes, of old secrets and even older curses. Vast stretches of shrublands and sunbaked dunes cover much of the landscape, broken up intermittently by ancient forests, foreboding mountains, and vast lakes and streams. Living is often harsh, and it is a rare and blessed individual who has not known the exhaustion that comes from waking before the sun and laying their head to rest long after it has fallen asleep. In Mulmoran man and woman alike must know the toil of backbreaking labor, forging their own destinies by their own hands, however pitiable they might be. Strange and fabled creatures still stalk the dark and forgotten places of the world, though it is a rare and well-traveled individual that has ever seen them and survived to tell about it.
Though Mulmoran is often referred to in texts as "The Land the Gods Forgot", it would be more apt to say that the gods abandoned the continent. Before humans and their diminutive brethren first made landfall, a great war took place between the Gods and the dwarves. Though the deities of the land suffered losses, they ultimately ravaged the old dwarven empires, drove them to the very brink of extinction, and departed from the physical plane forevermore. As a final punishment, their passing violently disrupted the balance of magic in the world. Where once spells came easily to mortal hands, now only a rare few of uncommon willpower could muster up even the most basic of conjurations. Even the most accomplished mages found that their own spells twisted like snakes in their grip, lashing out against them as often as their enemies.
As a result, magic is a rare and distrusted art, and few have access to the many luxuries that it could afford them. It is often associated with the devilish wiles of woodland spirits or the trafficking of demons, and as such there are few rural communities willing to suffer a mage in their midst. Witch hunts are common in such places, and most end in tragedy and the execution of innocents.
Practicing magic is a truly difficult affair, taking both intense dedication, concentration, and a little bit of luck for good measure. Spells are powerful and capable of performing deeds that no mere mortal could ever hope to match, but often have a price attached and are prone to backfiring or succeeding beyond the mage’s wildest imaginings. For those with the proper talent and patience, the path to true power is firmly within their grasp.
There are three major territories that can be found in the Mulmoors, and many smaller rural communities not marked on any map. In addition to these, you may elect to come from Listan itself, where our story will commence.
- Oraldrim: Like Llandriane to the south, Oraldrim was founded by a splinter faction headed by a disgraced son of O’seer’s Ulrich bloodline. Unlike Llandriane, it has never pretended to be anything like its honorable parent kingdom. The people of Oraldrim did everything they could to survive the predations of the fae, sacrificing the weak and the elderly to their capricious neighbors to ensure their own prosperity. Today it is a haven for crooks, scoundrels, thieves, spies, assassins, information brokers, and unscrupulous business owners. Its legitimate gambling dens draw in the gullible, the rich, and the crafty, while underground brawling leagues allow its mercenary armies to blow off steam when they aren’t raiding other settlements under the guise of bandits.
- Llandriane: A city that, until quite recently, was ruled by a near-paralyzing fear of the Fair Folk. Caught in a vice grip between the High Forest and its cruel facsimile of an aristocracy to the north and Escalan with its forest gods and tricksters to the south, its people were constantly at the whims of powerful supernatural forces. Their king was only allowed to rule and ensure the city’s survival by making constant concessions to the denizens of both forests, leaving them as little more than slaves chained by superstition.
Following a revolution supported by newfound kobold allies, the Republic has spent the last ten years reinventing itself in the wake of the societal and industrial revolution. Rickety old buildings were demolished and claustrophobic streets were widened into cobbled boulevards, the wooden walls were reinforced with cold iron, lumber yards, and factories overseen by kobold representatives. The Minister, a former leader of the revolution, has dedicated much of his time and effort towards ensuring the continued safety and happiness of the people who have placed their trust and faith in him, transforming the former Town Watch into a militarized Inquisition.
- O'seer: An old and prosperous kingdom that has seen the rise and fall of many other human nations. It was initially founded many centuries past by Samuel Ulrich, the admiral of a naval city originally hailing from The Bay of Sull. It is said that the dangers of those waters was such that they were eventually forced northward, following the current up into The Eldemere where they discovered the desiccated remnants of a city crumbling on the southwestern banks. With so many of his people eager for some solid ground beneath their feet, Admiral Ulrich dismantled nearly 70% of his powerful navy in the construction of proper houses over the stonework left by those who had come before them. Many of these early buildings still stand today, a fleet of landlocked bows facing the waters of Eldemere with once-ornate figureheads crumbling away to splinters.
Admiral Ulrich became King Ulrich the First, and took to the land just as easily as he had to the sea. Nearby quarries were cleared of bandits and other forms of dangerous wildlife to fuel the construction of castles, battlements, walls and watchtowers. Yet more ruins were excavated and reinforced with wood and fresh stone, or cleared out entirely to make room for courtyards and markets. The people, used to a life of cooperation against the elements, proved easy to organize.
Persevering in spite of famine, fae, plague, and giants, O’seer stands as a testament to humanity’s drive to survive in the face of extreme adversity.
- Listan: A large and sprawling town built into the elevated heights of the northern hills and bordering Lake Stillwater. It is a relatively quiet and unassuming place, little more than a village that has overgrown its original boundaries and fortified itself into a proper settlement. Its dwellings are made of stone and lumber brought in from the nearby forest of Knockwood (which is refreshingly free of Fair Folk), clustered together in smaller districts and further divided by terraces of increasing elevation. At the top is the castle and home of the Lord-Mayor, built right into the rocky hillside, though it is usually obscured from afar by the quaint plumes of chimney smoke wafting up from the myriad chimneys of the buildings below. Vast swaths of grazing land along the lakeside allow for the rearing of domesticated uru, large shaggy-coated mammals raised for their meat and wool.
Though most human settlements are fairly autonomous, Listan falls within the territory of King Ulrich, who resides in the capital of O’seer on the southern shores of The Eldemere.
- Humans remain the predominant race in Mulmoran, but they are certainly not the strongest. They control the greatest percentage of land, but their kingdoms are disjointed and few cities are large enough to train and command a sizable fighting force. Their greatest advantage is their ability to adapt to the many harsh environments that Mulmoran has to offer, from sunburned wastelands and frigid deserts to sucking mires and steep mountainsides.
The Pech, the smaller and nimbler cousins of man, live alongside their taller brothers with little risk of prejudice. Energetic, intelligent, crafty, and quick, pech usually put their skills to good use improving the quality of life in whatever town they happen to be raised in through inventive thinking or actual inventions. In larger cities they do tend to form very tightly knit communities or ghettos, but only out of a matter of convenience--it becomes far easier for them if city planners know where to erect the buildings with smaller doors and lower windows. Nevertheless, their tendency to stick together has led to persistent rumors of a so-called "Pech Intelligence Network" spanning the entirety of the continent. Pech have a tendency to find the idea vaguely insulting.
- The wood elves, or the Fair Folk as many know them, make their homes in the many vast forests of Mulmoran. They are unfathomably beautiful, powerful, capricious, and cruel, their mindsets both baffling and alien to most other civilized races. Most share blood with fae creatures, and it can often become difficult to discern the two from one another. They treat the woods as their personal playground, moving through the natural world like a fish through water and toying with those who enter their lands without permission.
One never knows how an encounter with the Fair Folk will go. They may simply follow you in silence, or make strange cries that echo through the canopy and unnerve all but the most weathered of travelers. Perhaps they will come and proposition you for a dance through the foliage, or offer to grant you a wish--for a price. Or perhaps they will simply descend upon you, attacking as ruthless, laughing savages, and tear you and your fellows to pieces. When enough of them get into the latter bloodthirsty mindset, they often form massive bands and go raiding through the nearby countryside on a Wild Hunt, slaughtering anything and everything in their path until they become satisfied or bored. These events happen only rarely, but any culture living on the borders of the woods are always live in fear that their generation may be the one to suffer at the Fair Folk's demented whims.
- Elsewhere, dominating many of the eastern plains, the Wilder Elves make their home. Many consider them to be little more than barbarians and heathens, but nearly everyone considers them a fair sight better than their psychotic tree-dwelling cousins. Theirs is a nomadic culture, their once-fair skin burnt brown by the sun after many long centuries of trekking through dune and desert. Trading camps often collect around oases, but rarely last for very long. Their culture is deeply tied to that of the orcs, with whom they share their lands.
- Orcs are the only ones to build static settlements in the Border Lands, where a great empire watches over the limitless sun-parched deserts. There they have erected countless great stone monoliths and temples, massive blocks of chiseled stone heaved into place through the efforts of thousands of goblin slaves, or curious oblong rooftops carved by the hands of skilled orcish and elvish artisans. Of all the civilizations of Mulmoran, none is more beautiful than the city of Calaunt, a paradise hewn from ivory and gold.
It is said that their distant ancestors were left there as a rear guard to some even greater civilization that set out in search of the Old Gods many long centuries ago. There they wait still, looking for any sign of their kin or any others that might risk traveling from whatever unknown country lies beyond the blistering heat of the desert.
- The hills are home to the Giants, great brutes that use smaller mortals, particularly humans, as slaves and cattle. Theirs is a society based purely around size and strength--leaders often find themselves deposed within a week of their successful regicide. This, combined with their own lethargy, is the only thing keeping them from ever becoming a truly serious threat to the other races of Mulmoran. They generally only put effort into capturing humans and pech, which they then force to do most of the hardest work for them. They will not find many friends abroad, and most consider banishment to be as good as a death sentence.
- Deep beneath the world, the kobolds have forged a mighty civilization the likes of which the country has never seen before. Legends say that a great paragon of their kind rose up among them many centuries ago, a kobold of singular intelligence and guile, who led them on a crusade against dragons and man alike before retreating back into their underground labyrinths to forge their own empire free from the machinations of the great wyrms and evil lords. Their delicate fingers, well-suited to the task of crafting intricate and devious traps, found new inspiration in the creation of increasingly complicated machines. Twenty years ago they resurfaced, and have since allied themselves with the newly created Republic of Llandriane.
- To the far north, in the blighted Dead Lands where no new life will grow and skeletal condors wheel over ancient fields of battle, the dwarves entrench themselves in the scarred mountain ranges. It is said that when the gods left Mulmoran they blasted the earth with molten fire, destroying the greatest and most blasphemous weapons of the dwarven artificers and killing nearly 90% of their entire race. For this reason most dwarves are shunned or outright hated by the superstitious, who believe that they are a cursed people and to blame for the current state of the world.
But the dwarves are a hardy folk, and against all odds they managed to survive. But this survival was not without its costs. With so many fallen in battle, and many more starved or parched to death from lack of food and water, the dwarven people were on the very verge of extinction. It was then that the surviving Kings turned to the one resource they had left to them, utilizing the very forbidden magic that had soured them in the eyes of others: necromancy. Converting themselves to Lichdom and using their newfound power to raise the thousands upon thousands of corpses dotting the landscape, the "Eternals", as they came to be called, used an undead labor force to stabilize and eventually revitalize their withering culture. Their great stone halls are now tombs to house their unnatural legions.
One thing that sets Fantasy Craft apart is the inclusion of Campaign Qualities
, overarching mechanics that set one campaign apart from the next. These can be found on page 322
of the Core Rulebook. In addition, I've listed some restrictions on classes and gear that will be important for any participants. As I mentioned above, Fantasy Craft is an extremely modular system that encourages houseruling to better suit the sort of campaign the DM and players wish to run. I assure you, there are still more than enough options available to you to make some truly unique characters.
The world is a brutal place where no injury is trivial.
Characters must save to avoid a critical injury when they suffer
16–25 points of damage in a single attack; with a failed save,
the character rolls 2d20 and adds the result to his damage to
determine the critical injury suffered. Also, characters must save
against Massive Damage when they suffer 26 or more points of
damage in a single attack (see page 208).
Heroes can fall as easily as lesser men. Their class vitality
bonus decreases to 1/2 normal (rounded down). For example, a
hero who typically has a vitality bonus of 9 instead gains only 4
vitality per level.
Heroes are everyday men and women with more courage
than raw ability. At character creation, player characters start
with 32 points to buy attribute scores and may not start with
scores above 18 (even after applying Origin benefits).
Indifferent Universe: The universe ignores the faithful.
Divine assistance may not be used as a justification
for Narrative Control (see page 366).
RARE MAGIC ITEMS
Magic items are especially uncommon (though no less
desired). The party suffers a –10 penalty with Treasure Rolls on
Table 7.15: Magic (see page 350). If this reduces the result below
0, roll on Table 7.11: Any, re-rolling Magic results (see page 345).
Difficult Magic: Magic is a rare and exotic
art, exceedingly difficult and time-consuming to perform. The
DCs of Spellcasting checks increase by 5 and the Casting Times
of spells double.
Wild Magic: Magic is unpredictable or difficult to control,
leading to… exciting critical successes and
failures. The threat and error ranges of Spellcasting checks
increase by 2 and when a character scores critical success or
failure, roll 1d6 and consult Table 7.4: Wild Magic (p327).
Restricted Races: For the purposes of this campaign, players will be limited to Humans and Pech. Later in the campaign, when interactions with other races becomes more frequent, I will rescind this rule for anyone rerolling or joining in with a new character.
Barred Species Feats:
All heritage and legacy feats, save Faerie. Subject to DM approval.
All blood feats (Adventure Companion), save Pech Blood.
Barred Base Classes:
Due to the removal of the reputation and lifestyle systems, both the Courtier and the Emissary will be closed off until I can find a satisfactory workaround. Rest assured that there will be plenty of room for diplomacy, power play, and politics in this game, should you choose to pursue that path.
Resurrection, and anything resembling it. True Resurrection does not exist in Mulmoran. Once one has died, there can be no returning by divine means. Ghosts and wraiths exist as tortured shadows of their former selves, and undeath grants a twisted immortality, but unless it is attained through ritual it is impossible to come back as anything more than a mindless zombie.
About Gunpowder Weaponry:
While it does exist, in large part thanks to the Kobold Inventor's League, black powder firearms are strictly regulated and cannot be purchased upon character creation. Should you wish to try and get your hands on a pistol or musket later on, I won't stop you (though law-enforcement officials might!).
Most characters typically start the game with four Interests
). The first is their birth language, and the second is a study from their native land. The final two can be divvied up between Alignments, Languages, and Studies. As these are unique to each campaign, I'll list some possibilities below. For those wishing to take an alignment, please say so in a PM, as they are not the typical Lawful/Neutral/Chaotic/Good/Evil that you may be accustomed to.
Starting Level: Languages:
- Each race previously listed has their own language, save for Humans and Pech which share the Common tongue. In addition, Pech begin play with one extra language: Pech Slang, a derivative of Common most often used in insulated Pech communities.
- Karnoch: The language of elementals and spirits of the land.
- Woodword: The language of the fae.
- Aklo: A primordial tongue often used in pagan worship.
- Knowledge (Engineering)
- Knowledge (Kobolds)
- Knowledge (Law)
- Knowledge (Gambling)
- Knowledge (Pech)
- Knowledge (Banditry)
- Knowledge (Sailing)
- Knowledge (Giants)
- Knowledge (Humanity)
- Knowledge (Herding)
- Knowledge (Folklore)
- Knowledge (Woodland Beasts) (Wolves, bears, deer, etcetera)
- Knowledge (Arcana)
- Knowledge (Dungeoneering)
- Knowledge (Geography)
- Knowledge (History)
- Knowledge (Nature)
- Knowledge (Cults)
Human or Pech. Sources:
Core Rulebook and Adventure CompanionStarting Wealth:
100 silver coins, plus one non-magical “heirloom” item costing no more than 100 silver. This can be anything from a family weapon to a rusty old pocket watch, but should have some degree of sentimental or personal value.Stats:
32 Point BuyBackground:
Your character must have been born in the kingdom of O’seer, Oraldrim, or the Republic of Llandriane, and their surrounding territories. For those wishing to create their own home town, please feel free to contact me with any details.Aim:
To give players a large and mysterious sandbox setting to explore as they see fit. While I have definitive plots in place, I have no intention to railroad any players that choose to put their faith in me as a DM.
Sadly, Fantasy Craft does not have the benefit of a nice and tidy sheet courtesy of Plothook or Mythweavers, at least to my knowledge. The following sheet should work in a pinch, unless I come up with a better alternative.
[b]Size and Type:[/b] [i](Humans and Pech are Medium and Small "Folk", respectively.)[/i]
[b]Action Dice #/d#:[/b] [i](At level 1, you start with three d4s.)[/i]
[b]Current xp (xp to next level):[/b] [i](At level 1, you will start with 0 and need 1000 to reach level 2.)[/i]
[i](Statistics of any worn armor go here. An example is listed below.)[/i]
Fire Resist 3
Defense Penalty (DB/Reflex): -1
Armor Check Penalty: -0
[i](Statistics of any equipped weapons go here. An example is listed below.)[/i]
Longbow (Standard Arrows)
[i](Total Attack Bonus)[/i] +4; [i](Damage)[/i] 1d6+4, [i](Threat Range)[/i] 19-20, [i](Weapon/Ammo Qualities)[/i] Armor-Piercing II
[i]Alignment (If Any):[/i]
[i]Knowledge Check Bonus:[/i] (Int Modifier + Total Studies)
[i]Proficiencies:[/i] (Weapon Groups / Fortes go here. Combat Tricks have their own section below.)
CLASS AND ORIGIN SKILLS
(Maximum Skill Rank is 3 + your class level.)
[li]List all the skills granted to you by your class, selected upon choosing your origin, or granted by feats here, along with how many ranks of each skill you have.[/i]
[b]Species:[/b] [i](Attributes and Benefits)[/i]
[b]Talent:[/b] [i](If Human)[/i]
[i](Copy your class's Core Ability and any other learned Class Abilities down here.)[/i]
[i](Copy all feats down in this section.)[/i]
[i](Copy all learned Combat Tricks down here.)[/i]
(For Divine/Arcane Spellcasters only.)
a. Casting Level, found in your Class
b. Spell Points, found in your Class table
c. Spellcasting Skill Bonus
d. Spell Save DC
e. Number of Spells Known
f. List of Known Spells
GEAR AND EQUIPMENT
[i]Current Weight / Maximum Capacity[/i] (p154)
[li]List all owned gear here (save equipped weapons and armor, which should be listed under Offense and Defense, respectively). [/li]
BACKGROUND AND PERSONALITY
A character isn't only stats, now is it? What kind of life has your character led up until now? What kind of person are they? Note that I do not need a twenty page life story--if you can tell me what this character is all about in a single paragraph, then more power to you. It may sound hypocritical to say so after all the text I've just slapped you with, but brevity doesn't mean your ideas are only half-baked compared to someone who writes a novella on their PC. Both styles have their place, so use your best judgment and come to me if you need help integrating them into the world of Mulmoran.
For those few people that I haven't already scared off, I hope to hear from you soon!