Dragonborn

Physical Description: Dragonborn are a race of draconic creatures. Dragonborn are impressively tall with a heavy weight to match. Dragonborn resemble in many ways what their name suggests: humanoid dragons. Dragonborn exhibit many draconic features, including a scaly hide, a large muscular body. Each dragonborn belongs to a different colour, which shows which dragon they descend from. There are five metallic and five chromatic colours. These colours tend to reflect their nature. (Read more below in Beasts: Dragons)

History: Thousands of years ago, there were humans that worshipped the Dragons. They wished to achieve the strength of these mighty beasts and learn from them. These worshippers disappeared, and were thought to simply have become dragon food. Decades later, however, these very same people emerged reformed. Not only were they physically built, and blood of a power creature, but they tended to have a natural gift with something soon to be known as magic.  No one knows exactly what happened in this time, but the Dragonborns hold the day of Dragon Blood (The day the dragonborn first made their appearance) very dearly as a reminder that they are gifted in one way or another.

After the Horne came into being, Humans and Elves came together to experiment on these things they did not understand, capturing both Horne and Dragons. Through cruel experiments, they discovered how to use magic themselves. The Dragonborn society was disgusted at the disrespect to their blood, and left the Mainland to Draconia and have recently been left the Mainland alone for the most part.

Society: Dragonborn have a well-known dedication to honor. However, all Dragonborn tend to view all living things as deserving of courtesy and respect. To Dragonborn, honor is more than a word and was often considered more important than life itself.  The draconic nature of Dragonborn gives them a strong self-consciousness and a tendency for strong emotions. As a result, most Dragonborn adventurers come to their way of life through a desire to prove themselves and win respect from their brethren. Other races see Dragonborn as proud or even arrogant because of this dedication to excellence and high standards. It was true that Dragonborn were typically proud of their race’s accomplishments. However, Dragonborn were also more than willing to recognize accomplishments of other races, whether or not the race in question was an ally or enemy. The Dragonborns tend to worship Tyvir, Starin Raul or any gods that show honour or leadership.

Age: Young Dragonborn, who hatch from eggs like their draconic relatives, grow at an impressively rapid rate, much faster than most other races, reaching the equivalent maturity of a human child of 10 by age 3. However, this rate of maturation slows dramatically within a few short years and they are not considered physically mature for another twelve years. Once they did reach adulthood, Dragonborn could expect a lifespan identical to that of humans.

Homeland: The Island of Draconia, where their Kingdom reigns.

Dwarves

Physical Description: Dwarves, sometimes called the Iron Folk, are a natural humanoid race. They are physically durable, despite their size. What Dwarves lack in height they make up for in bulk; they are, on average, about as heavy as humans. Male Dwarves grow thick facial hair sometimes used to display social status. It is said that even some of their females are capable of growing beards. Whether or not the Dwarven claim that they were carved from the world’s stone is true, the Dwarves share many qualities considered similar to the stone they live with.

History: No one is sure of the origin of this race, but it is widely considered that Dwarves came from the mountains and stone, or were hardened by war and struggles. Over the course of centuries, the Dwarves dug their way into the core of the largest mountain in the Isles, Ironheights. Not many have the honour to see the city beneath and be allowed to leave, but it is rumoured that it is more beautiful than even El’Vallahna.

Society:Strong, hardy, and dependable Dwarves are polite, particularly to elders. Dwarves value their traditions, regardless of the sub-race they come from, and look for inspiration from ancestral heroes. Less nobly, the Dwarves also have a strong passion for the riches of the world, and are known to outsiders to be hoarders. Dwarves are also known for their stubborn nature and cynicism, traits widespread amongst the Dwarves but which contribute to and are commonly offset by their bravery and tenacity. These beings tend to keep to themselves, worshipping the idea of purity of blood. Dwarves tend to worship gods that favour wealth, strength and will.

Age: Dwarves are a long-lived race and reach physical maturity somewhat later than humans. A dwarf is traditionally considered an adult once they reach the age of forty. Dwarves age much like humans but over a longer period of time, remaining vigorous for their 200 year life.

Homeland: Presently, most Dwarves can be found within the mountain of Ironheights, which the Dwarves themselves carved.

Elves

Physical Description: Usually, true elves are naturally slender and athletic, similar in size to humans. Elves are fair and beautiful, handsome, and have pointed ears.  Elves are agile, dexterous creatures.

History: The Elves have lived similarly to humans from the beginnings of time, although always held themselves to higher standards. Gods are often depicted as Elves, they are far more long lived and have a natural talent in most things they attempt. As such, they were always considered more powerful, and some feared and even resented them for this. However, they weren’t blessed by the gods as humans often were. Because of this, they were always second highest in courts and no higher. This made many of them bitter, dividing them. Those who were loyal to the gods, to fate and to dedication stayed and became the High Elves. Many sought to find their places amongst nature, where the Forest Elves became Druids, Barbarians and Tribal Leaders. Some were driven underground, their hatred for the gods and humans drawing them to darker places, where they believed neither would be able to watch. Such ideals have faded or distorted with time however, and these subraces may believe very different things. This is how they are seen, however.

A few decades ago, Enan, an Elven Council member of the ‘City of Light’ was named King. It was a turning point for religious Elves, finally believing to be recognised by the gods. Enan renamed the city ‘El’Vallahna’ to honour a new era. Soon after, a Horne was caught using magic to slay the queen, and Enan in his grief declared war on all Horne. The old Hornic Holiday of The Elders is now celebrated by the Elves as the Day of the Gods.

Society: Most Elves love simple joys such as dancing, singing, foot-races, or contests of skill. Elves find a natural aversion to that which they see as uninteresting tasks and are fun-loving by nature. However, despite how unpleasant some things such as war can be, Elves can become grimly serious if a threat to their friends, family, or livelihood makes such actions necessary. Much like humans, elves do not always conform to their base nature and depending on where they live and the other races around them, they can strongly deviate from this path. There are three prominent subraces for Elves: High Elves, who are the more civil folk, and known for being more uptight and ambitious. They tend to keep to cities and make friends with nobles. Forest Elves are the subrace that tends to keep to nature. These are the more free loving Elves, and can be found in tribes away from civilisation. The Drow are a darker race, and a rare sight above ground. They tend to keep to their underdark cities, although not much more is known of them. No one trusts these Underdark Elves. Elves tend to worship different gods based on their subraces and areas they live in. Tyvir and Starin Raul are common amongst High Elves, Beory and amongst Forest Elves, and Mask amongst the Drow.

Age: Elves mature at the same rate as humans until they are about 20, and then slow to roughly 1 year of aging to 5 years lived. Often an elf can expect to live a full life until the age of about 600 years, only experiencing old age for the last 50 years.

Homeland: Different subraces are found in vastly different places. The High Elves prefer the rush of the City, and can be found anywhere in the Mainland of the Isles, especially El’Vallahna. Forest Elves keep to their name, and tend to stay in forests, or anywhere far from city life and in touch with nature. Drow prefer the Underdark, a world beneath the world, not many have seen this land.

Gnomes

Physical Description: Gnomes, or the Forgotten Folk as they are sometimes known, are small fey humanoids, the smallest known on the land. They are often rosey cheeked and have colourful hair.

History: Gnomes are rare in the Isles, and mostly lived in an area that was destroying on the Night of the Parting. Since their home was destroyed, they became close with the other similarly odd races, and found themselves living amongst Horne, Dwarves and Tieflings. Those that lived amongst the Dwarves even helped develop Ironheights, and are rumoured to be the engineering genius behind it.

Society: Gnomes are a naturally intelligent and creative race, with a charm about them unusual for other humanoids. Gnomes also have a natural affinity for creativity, stealth and illusion, both for the purpose of using it for themselves as well as seeing through other attempts at it. Many gnomes are weak compared to other humanoids, though this is far from a universal trait for the race. Gnomes may lack the drive and ambition of other races, particularly humans, but their creativity gives them a strong ability for ingenuity. Most gnomes are content to live simple lives. Gnomes are naturally witty and jovial, and they prefer to overcome obstacles through cunning and innovation rather than the obvious way. Ever curious, gnomes are drawn to adventure more often by a desire to see the world than out of greed or the hope of fame.

Age: Gnomes are very long-lived, living over three centuries is not uncommonly rare and five centuries is not unheard of. Generally, gnomes are considered to reach maturity at forty years of age. However, unlike elves, gnomes show a greater degree of aging as they grow older and once a gnome has passed his or her first century, their hair begins to gray, if it was not already white, and their skin begins to wrinkle as in humans or dwarves.

Homeland: Destroyed in the Night of the Parting, are now spread throughout the land and are few and far inbetween.

Half-elves

Physical Description: Half-elves stand roughly the height of a human and are similar in their variety of complexions, their options increased by their elven and human heritage. Half-elven ears are about the size of human ones, but like Elves, they are pointed on the ends. Half-elves are also notably more durable and passionate than either Elves or humans, a unique result of the two races’ blending. Half-elves usually adopt the dress and hairstyles of the culture they were raised among.

History: Mixing of blood has always been looked down upon by Elves and sometimes by humans, and as such the mix of Elves and Humans was disgraced. Centuries ago, it was considered blasphemy, and these humanoids would be abandoned, or even murdered. Time has made it easier, and many people have become more open minded, but Half-Elves are still struggling.

Society:  Often shunned by both Elves and Humans, Half-Elves are often left to fend for themselves, or are looked down upon in society. Half-elves, as a result of their unique heritage, exhibit a confidence and strength of personality uncommon amongst both humans and Elves, a result of the blending between elven perceptiveness and human passion and drive. Half-elves are natural leaders and negotiators, and perhaps due to their reality of living in two worlds are unusually open-minded.Half-elves generally like to be around others, the more diverse the better. Perhaps due to the circumstances of their birth, half-elves are often found in large population centers where other races mingle freely. Half-elves naturally gather others around them, forming a large network of contacts that is both pleasing to their psyche, and practical for other purposes.

Age: Half-elves mature at a slower rate than humans, and can live for over 180 years.

Homeland: Half-Elves aren’t tied down to specific lands.They are known to wander and find a place they feel welcomed.

Half-Orcs

Physical Description: Half-orcs are humanoids born of both human and orc ancestry by a multitude of means. Combining the physical power of their orcish ancestors with the agility of their humans ones, half-orcs can be formidable individuals. Half-orcs are, on average, are taller and larger than most humans and are known to have abrasive physical traits (including but not limited to: grayish skin, jutting jaws, prominent teeth, a sloping forehead). Not all half-orcs obtain these of course, but all half-orcs obtain some physical characteristics from either race. Half-orcs as such appear bestial to humans, though amongst orcs they are considered human-like physically.

History: Orcs aren’t known for being the smartest creatures in the Isles, and when the first Half-Orc was born into a tribe it was a confusing time. This creature… Looks kind of like them, smells kind of like them, makes grunting noises like them… They were born from them, so therefore they were blood, and in turn, family. The concept was easier for the Orcs to grasp than for Humans, who had a very different idea on beauty, one which Half-Orcs defied. Because of this Half-Orcs are more predominantly Orcish by nature. Their history is Orcish more than anything.

Society: Half-orcs that have lived amongst orcs might pick up a common orcish tradition, that of ritual scarring. Half-orcs as such do not look upon scars as marks of shame, but rather as marks that demonstrate their skill in battle. Like other half-breeds, half-orcs combine the natures of both their lineages into a unique whole, a trait which extends into their mentality as well as their physical qualities. Few half-orcs have the patience for the etiquette or protocol that civilization often imposes. As a result, half-orcs are often perceived as uncouth savages, a reputation perhaps accentuated by the orcish love of physical pleasures.

Age: In general, half-orcs do not live as long as humans, maturing by their sixteenth year and often dying before their sixtieth.

Homeland: Anywhere in the wild, so long as they are with their Tribe they feel at home.

Halflings

Physical Description: Halflings, also known as “Quick folk” and “Sly folk” are humanoid creatures similar in shape to humans (who halflings call the “Big Folk”). The term “halfling” is derived from the fact that a halfling is around half of the size of a human, but otherwise very similar in appearance. Nearly all male halflings are incapable of growing true beards, though many have long sideburns. Halfling hairstyles are often complex, with strands woven together or braided.

History:

Society: Halflings get along well with most of the other races and are known for their curiosity and tendency to collect things. Although halflings have an affinity for collecting valuables, they do not prefer to wear these on their person, instead preferring more comfortable clothing. Halflings, who by large have a strong force of personality, are also intensely courageous.  Halflings are by nature joyful and friendly in their dealings with others.  They take pleasure in simple things, with few aspiring to greatness in the same manner as humans. Some halflings do become adventurers, but usually this is a practice taken up for reasons of necessity rather than personal drive. While many halflings do not have the ambition for adventure that some races do, most prefer trouble to boredom; the race is notoriously curious. Many halflings also have a strong appetite for food and drink as well as narcotics and clothing. Similarly, many halflings are enthusiastic collectors, and love to hold on to possessions won through skill and daring

Age: Halflings have lifespans comparable with, but slightly longer, than humans. A halfling is typically considered an adult in their early twenties and some live into their 150s.

Homeland: Halflings enjoy adventure, and become bored with settling down. They tend to wander, and stay in cities until it becomes dull.

Horne (Pronounced: Horn)

Physical Description: They have two forms, their ‘blood’ form, and their ‘horned’ form. While in blood-form, the Horne may partially or fully take the shape of their blood animal. Their blood form depends on their ancestry; if both of the Horne’s parents were Horne, then they would be able to fully transform into the animal with the strongest blood. If one parent was not Horne, they would retain their Hornic parent’s animal, but only be able to partially transform. The horned form appears just as a human, but with small horns protruding from their heads. They may also retain some features given to them by their animal blood.

History: Thousands of years ago, after the gods had claimed their thrones, the Horne were created by the Nine as a show of power. The Horne haven’t had the most pleasant time since being placed in the Isles. A long time ago, they, along with dragons, were tortured and experimented on by humans and elves as a means to discover and use magic. While the Horne were forgiving, a short time ago many were massacred by the elves. They have been hiding, outlawed ever since.

Society: Before the massacre, the Horne had a very Druidic society. They had powerful Elders, Horne with the blood animal of a dragon, who lead them. They would live closely with family, and Horne of different blood animals would live in different places. The Horne have always been peaceful and protectors of nature. Now, however, the Elders have been slain and their families torn apart. They are still recovering from the massacre.

Age: They age roughly the same as humans and their blood animal combined.

Homeland: They once claimed the Ruined City, as well as many tribes throughout the land. Now they live in the shadows and in secret.

Humans

Physical Description: Humans in this setting do not differ from reality.

History: For most of the time between the Night of the Parting and the present, humans have ruled the Mainlands, and a couple of the surrounding islands. The last Human King relinquished his throne to the present Elven King, Enan, after a mysterious meeting between the royal Elves and Humans thirty years ago.

Society: Humans are very diverse, and their beliefs, culture and attitude will greatly depend on their upbringing and surroundings. Many are thought to be greedy, self important and uncaring, while others may be thought as compassionate, selfless or even heroic. Humans are well known for breeding with most other races in the Isles, with Half Elves and Half Orcs being relatively common. This is generally frowned upon by both races.

Age: Humans are considered adults by the time they reach their twenties, and have a life expectancy of eighty years.

Homeland: Humans can find home in most parts of the Isles, but tend to not be welcome in Iron Heights and Draconia.

Tieflings (Pronounced: Tea-flings)

Physical Description: Some appear as normal humans, though the majority retain physical characteristics derived from their ancestor. The most common features are horns, non-prehensile tails, and pointed teeth. Less common are the eyes (solid orbs of black, red, white, silver, or gold) though most have eyes similar to those of humans. It is rare but possible to find a tiefling with cloven feet, or even a sulfurous odor, or a palpable aura of discomfort felt by others around them. Other than these traits, tieflings are similar to humans physically; they are just as tall as humans, with slightly heavier mass and bulk. Tiefling skin is usually human-like in colour, but extends past normal human colors into reddish hues as well. Tiefling hair colour shares hues with human hair, but adds dark blue, red, or purple as common shades amongst the race.

History: The history of the Tieflings is complex, as their origins are a cross between humanoids of the material plane, and demons. Because of the deals of Tiefling’s parents and ancestors, they are often killed or arrested out of fear that they too may be evil. These fears have not changed.

Society: Tieflings are a race descended from intermingling between humans and otherworldly entities often referred to as demons. Tieflings have an unsettling air about them, the majority of  people are automatically uncomfortable around them due to this, even if they are unaware of the Tiefling’s unsavory ancestry. Because of this they struggle to find welcome, and can end up forced to fend for themselves.

Age: Tieflings who reach adulthood can be expected to age at roughly the same rate and live for as long as humans do.

Homeland: Tieflings are not openly welcomed in many places.

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