Barbarian Lands of the Known Realms

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James Mishler
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Barbarian Lands of the Known Realms

Post by James Mishler » Sat Oct 28, 2006 10:50 am

So I'm looking over the Gazetteer, and putting together a list of barbarian peoples and their archetypes, and here's what I've found so far:

Northlands
Ashoch Elves: Barbarian elves that seek to slay non-elves in the Mirdar Forest.

Barbarians of the Frost Barrens: No mention of Vikings, and are savage and technologically backward (living in huts and caves), so probably like early Teutonic/Germanic tribes.

Cinai: Historical Picts, Celts, and Gaels, Howard's Cimmerians. Probably related to the civilized peoples of Thire.

Ferahn Forest: Tribes of goblins, orcs, and barbaric elves (notably, these elves are not mentioned in the Elven Nations entry).

Icenwastes Tribes: Savage humanoids, unorganized cousins of the Scourge to the south. The ancestors of the Scourge, the tribes that took the Mirdar-Luminor Plains, appear to have driven a wedge between the northern tribes ages ago, which resulted in the tribe of the Wintermere being separated from their cousins in the Frost Barrens.

Myrwych Elves: Another savage elven tribe that hunt the Horrors of Zamon.

Saramanthians: Huns, Mongols, and Easterlings, with a dash of Orc. Descended from the Abylosians and the Uru'Nuk.

Savages of Nos Caen: Howardian Picts, riding big boars. Possibly related to the Cinai, as their people and culture once spanned the Northlands.

Scourge: Huns, Mongols, and Easterlings, with a whole lotta Orc. Are the Scourge and the Saramanthians related? Perhaps the Uru'Nuk were a humanoid (goblinoid and orc) peoples, and when the Abylossians invaded the lands of the Druid Kings, they brought Uru'Nuk peoples with them. These evolved into the tribes of the Mirdar-Luminor Plains, and they eventually migrated north, driving the wedge between the northern human tribes.

Trolltooth Tribes: Savage ogres, goblins, and stone giants.

Urkallan Hills: Kobold and ogre tribes.

Wild Tribes: Human and gobhlinoid savages of the Wild Wood.

Wintermere Tribes: A pale-skinned tribe, perhaps related to the peoples of the Frost Barrens, inhabit the Wintermere Forest.

All the major European-style barbarians are represented... Celt, Germanic, and Hun. If the current threat of the Scourge is not enough, I might add a development among the Frost Barbarians of the Bay of Asur... perhaps the Asurian tribes have developed seafaring capabilities like the Vikings, and now threaten Crieste and the lands along the Lirean Sea directly! Hmm...

Southlands
Chiauhtli Lizardfolk: Nomadic lizardfolk inhabit this swamp.

Oddly, no human barbarians, as the Xumecs are civilized, if "primitive" by Northlands standards. I'd say, however, that minor savage tribes exist in the lands between the central regions controlled by each city state. After all, the peninsula is pretty darn big!

Then, too, there is the "Nameless Land" north of the Isle of Tarras. It looks perfect for placement of tribes related to the Xumec, but who never fell under the domination of the Nagas. Algonquian perhaps, maybe Iroquois in culture.


Lostlands
Bugbear Hordes of the Burned Lands: Though these guys seem to be from somewhere else... where is not said.

Gadjarrians: Semi-civilized Halfling gypsies with more than a dash of Bedouin.

Ghetrian Tribes: Desert tribes of humans and halflings, probably again, Bedouin.

Giants and Trolls: Tribes are said to inhabit the Pearl Spires and the Herennia Mountains (however, the Herennia Mountains are supposed to have been cleared of dangerous creatures by the dwarves of Taijin).

Gnolls: Roving tribes of gnolls inhabit the Mountains of the Fifth Prince.

Vermillion Tribes: Elven Bedouin.

Xyr Muthal: Savage, atavistic tribes.
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Post by Maliki » Sat Oct 28, 2006 2:59 pm

Quite a list, thanks for sharing.
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Post by Jeff LaSala » Sun Oct 29, 2006 6:07 am

Hey, James...
Oddly, no human barbarians, as the Xumecs are civilized, if "primitive" by Northlands standards. I'd say, however, that minor savage tribes exist in the lands between the central regions controlled by each city state. After all, the peninsula is pretty darn big!

Even if the word barbarian isn't used, trust me, plenty of Xulmecs would fit the bil. If you noticed, there's even an organization within Xulmec of Aztec-style paladins. While they still match the paladin description in every way, they're not paladin archtypes with shining plate armor.

There isn't a PHB PC class or NPC class that can't be found among the Xulmecs.
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Post by Harley Stroh » Mon Oct 30, 2006 9:33 am

James,

That is incredible. Well done. And you tagged all of my archetypes/sources on the money.

//H
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Post by Mike_Ferguson » Mon Oct 30, 2006 10:32 am

James -

Excellent list - I like it a lot. I thought I'd just try to provide two points of clarification on the Lostlands:

1) The Vermilion Tribes - I wouldn't really call them elven bedouins, although they certainly can be run that way if you choose. :) They're much more aggressive and warlike than that - think of the Mongol Hordes led by Genghis Khan crossed with the Sioux Indians, and that's more how I intended them to be.

2) The Herennia Mountains - the dwarves did indeed clear them of giants and trolls ... at least to the point where the giants and trolls no longer threaten the dwarven cities of Taijin. However, they didn't eradicate them completely.Tribes of trolls and evil giants still lurk in the Mountains, just in fairly small numbers.

If you're a dwarf in one of the cities of Taijin, you have little to fear from evil giants or trolls. You'll probably never see one if you don't stray past the city gates. However, a group of four to six adventurers wandering through one of the more isolated sections of the Herennia Mountains on a lonely mountain path ... well, they might find an evil troll or two. Or three. Or ten. :)

Hope this helps to clarify some of my original intents.

Keep the lists coming!

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Post by James Mishler » Mon Oct 30, 2006 11:09 am

Harley Stroh wrote:James,

That is incredible. Well done. And you tagged all of my archetypes/sources on the money.
Thanks Harley! And thanks for your contributions an awesome campaign setting! I see that I'm going to really have to bust my ass to make my AGP Wilderlands products competitive! :)

James
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Post by James Mishler » Mon Oct 30, 2006 11:39 am

Mike_Ferguson wrote:James -

Excellent list - I like it a lot. I thought I'd just try to provide two points of clarification on the Lostlands:

1) The Vermilion Tribes - I wouldn't really call them elven bedouins, although they certainly can be run that way if you choose. :) They're much more aggressive and warlike than that - think of the Mongol Hordes led by Genghis Khan crossed with the Sioux Indians, and that's more how I intended them to be.
Ah! Thanks for the clarification!
2) The Herennia Mountains - the dwarves did indeed clear them of giants and trolls ... at least to the point where the giants and trolls no longer threaten the dwarven cities of Taijin. However, they didn't eradicate them completely.Tribes of trolls and evil giants still lurk in the Mountains, just in fairly small numbers.
I see. So as long as merchants stick to the cleared areas, trolls and giants aren't a problem. Stray off the path, and your profit margin goes way, way down, especially if you value your life highly. Works for me.

One further question on Taijin, though... I note that the Shadowed West is supposed to be the "Orient," i.e., China, Japan, etc., of the Known Realms. Yet Taijin seems distinctly Japanese in culture, at least from the naming conventions and merchant-oriented culture. Are the Taijin dwarves immigrants from the Shadowed West?

I myself am considering changing Taijin. The Lostlands being generally North African/West Asian in nature, I'd rather place something similar in the area. I'm thinking of making it a kingdom like Ethiopia, only populated by veshoges (a race from Gary Gygax's Lejendary Adventure series). Veshoges are in a nebulous area between "demihumans" and "humanoids," they look humanoid, but are more neutral in aspect, but highly mercenary (they bear a passing resemblance to the Ferengi of Star Trek). Thus I'll keep the merchant-style nature of the society, which works perfectly with veshoges, with Ethiopian trappings. They've got a neat series of royal titles (which were also borrowed from for the Ferengi title of Grand Nagus). Ethiopia has an incredibly interesting history that I think fits very well as an analogue in this section of the Known Realms.

I think I'll re-name Taijin "Ta Netjer," which fits in the Egyptian-style naming conventions of the Lostlands. It is so-called as there are many ancient ruins high in thbe mountains, remnants from the Reign of Dragons and the Reign of Cats. The veshoges, though, will refer to their land as Aksum. [/url]
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Post by Harley Stroh » Mon Oct 30, 2006 2:49 pm

James Mishler wrote:
Harley Stroh wrote:James,

That is incredible. Well done. And you tagged all of my archetypes/sources on the money.
Thanks Harley! And thanks for your contributions an awesome campaign setting! I see that I'm going to really have to bust my ass to make my AGP Wilderlands products competitive! :)

James
Naw. :) There's always room for more good RPG material, and AGP is the latest heir in a long dynasty. Besides, it's not even close to a zero-sum game. If the d20 watershed taught us anything, it is that the entire industry benefits when someone turns out a good product, and that we all suffer when companies turn out bad products.

//H
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Post by Mike_Ferguson » Tue Oct 31, 2006 7:17 am

James Mishler wrote: One further question on Taijin, though... I note that the Shadowed West is supposed to be the "Orient," i.e., China, Japan, etc., of the Known Realms. Yet Taijin seems distinctly Japanese in culture, at least from the naming conventions and merchant-oriented culture. Are the Taijin dwarves immigrants from the Shadowed West?

I myself am considering changing Taijin. The Lostlands being generally North African/West Asian in nature, I'd rather place something similar in the area. I'm thinking of making it a kingdom like Ethiopia, only populated by veshoges (a race from Gary Gygax's Lejendary Adventure series). Veshoges are in a nebulous area between "demihumans" and "humanoids," they look humanoid, but are more neutral in aspect, but highly mercenary (they bear a passing resemblance to the Ferengi of Star Trek). Thus I'll keep the merchant-style nature of the society, which works perfectly with veshoges, with Ethiopian trappings. They've got a neat series of royal titles (which were also borrowed from for the Ferengi title of Grand Nagus). Ethiopia has an incredibly interesting history that I think fits very well as an analogue in this section of the Known Realms.
You could certainly have the dwarves of Taijin come from the Shadowed West - it's not something I considered while creating this part of the Lostlands, but it works rather well now that you mention it. If I ever get a chance to cover this region of the world again, I'd probably work that concept into Taijin's background somehow. :)

My thought in creating Taijin was basically to create an "alternate" dwarven kingdom that got away from typical dwarf stereotypes - you know, the surly, dour curmudgeons who love gold, drink lots of ale, and hate elves. I wanted a dwarven kingdom that was militaristic, placed value on far more than gold and gems, and had a society that was highly ordered, disciplined, and honorable. To that end, I "borrowed" heavily from the concepts of Japanese feudal society and the shogunate culture of those times, since it seemed to fit those ideas fairly well.

There's other influences in there as well - certain elements of Chinese, Siberian, and Korean cultures got mixed in, along with a healthy amount of my own original ideas, but the Japanese influences probably show themselves the most.

But restructuring Taijin to become ""Ta Netjer" sounds cool - and populating it with veshoges instead of dwarves adds a whole new set of adventure possibilities. That's what I like about the DCC World - it's possible to use what you like and change what you don't without having to rip apart metaplot, or go to great lengths to explain the changes. Don't like Taijin? No problem - just plug in Ta Netjer, and you're good to go. :)

It's a highly customizable campaign setting, but it works equally well if you just want to use it "as is".

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Re: Barbarian Lands of the Known Realms

Post by gargoyle » Thu Nov 02, 2006 2:41 pm

James Mishler wrote: Barbarians of the Frost Barrens: No mention of Vikings, and are savage and technologically backward (living in huts and caves), so probably like early Teutonic/Germanic tribes.
Stay tuned i think i may have thrown a wrench in this prediction!
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