Havenholm - A massive castle city that sits atop of the Anders Mountain Range. With only one road up, and its geographical location, this makes it a difficult target for invasion. It is also the oldest known kingdom, and the home of many powerful kings. Havenholm typically stays out of regional conflicts, and is serves as mediator for conflict resolution. Saint Antigone presides over the region and watches over the city, along with the Havenholm army.
The castle has statues of numerous saints from all over the world as a welcoming gesture to travelers. Waterfalls and rock faces are mingled amidst the architecture as well. Baroque style architecture and statues are all around the city.
Naz'ur - An underground city in the forgotten sands desert. The harsh conditions of the desert are kept above the city as this underground Oasis houses lakes, sand-falls, temples, bazaars, statues, bridges, palm trees, homes stacked on one another carved in cliff face, and theaters. The emperor of the Forgotten Sands desert serves his people, but rewards himself with a lavish palace and numerous servants for various needs and desires. The Saint Vithir roams the sands and protects the people of the desert.
Feranthis - A city with no Saint to protect it. Feranthis has been conquered numerous times by different city states. The royal family has stayed in power as a way to keep the locals loyal to the family, and the occupying force. The region is centrally located next to three other city states, making it critical for travel, and vulnerable to multiple invading forces. Feranthis is surrounded by a thick forest of red-leafed trees, shimmering rivers, numerous underground caves used for mining extremely strong “Feranthan Steel” which has a blackish-red hue. Massive wooden gates surround the city, along with indigenous forest creatures.
The king has charged his son with finding relics, weapons, and armor that could kill a Saint. Their goal is to kill all of the saints to level the advantages held by other city states with Saints.
Maylia - A holy city, home of many Saints and relics. Maylia features countless cathedrals, statues, and temples that serve to worship the saints. It was here that the Saints fell from the heavens to guard the planet from any evil, so says the ancient texts. This is where the Saints Guard train, and where dead saints are interred or their relics are housed/hidden. Many travel from all over the world to this holy place to worship and thank the saints.
Urkthill - Highlands protected/governed by a demon. The demon knight killed the Saint that once watched over the highlands. Urkthill is much less modern compared to the other citadels of the world. Stone houses with straw roofs, green rolling hills, massive stone monuments, rain soaked farms, and emerald lakes make up the countryside. Many brutish statues of the Demon Knight dot the countryside, along with the ruins of saint statues.
The locals have ancient (some would say archaic) languages and religions they are allowed to practice, so long as no one questions the demon or his demands as Demon King. Those loyal to the Demon King are rewarded and those who whisper betrayal are executed and turned into warnings for would be traitors. The people here are strong and hardened by the stormy weather and ruler.
Rottgate - This city state was originally known as Rockgate, but a plague nearly wiped out the entire population, thereby changing its name. This plague was introduced by a rival kingdom. A horse drawn carriage carried a statue of Death, and plagued corpses were piled at the base of the statue. As the carriage travelled through the city, the plague spread, infecting everyone. One of the few survivors was the Barron, who managed to find a healing relic before the plague could completely take him.
Rottgate was once a prosperous medieval city with wood and stone buildings lining crowded city streets, waterway canals, and rivers through the town. It is unclear who sent the plague.
Since the plague, corpses line the streets, buildings are in disrepair, and rats have populated many of the empty homes.
The Saint Murial was unable to save any people within the city he protected. Shamed, he exiled himself to the Gulthaen mountains.
Bloodwood Forest – This forest has Bloodwood trees, known for their massive trunks and high reaching branches. The bloodwoods take 4 men about 6 days to cut them down. These trees are turned into fortresses, boats, weapons, and buildings… if you can cut them down. This forest is infested with recent invaders known as Dead Gods, from the Gulthaen mountains. Rangers and mercenaries are usually the only humans that occupy these forests as the living conditions are harsh and unforgiving due to cold weather and feral wildlife.
Gulthaen Mountains - Mountain ranges covered in snow, black rocks, and (sometimes frozen) water falls. Trees are densely populated amongst the lower parts of the mountain ranges, but as the mountains go higher, the trees can’t survive the temperature and infertile ground. Ruined fortresses dot the mountainside. A once powerful nation ruled the mountains and the natural resources within them. The smashed fortresses, gates, and statues are covered in snow. There are black caves that run like veins through the mountains, with crystal clear waterfalls that flow like the blood through those veins.
Corsul – A city of the dead, made up almost entirely of tombs, graveyards, catacombs, cathedrals, mausoleums, and reliquaries. All countries bury their dead here as a sign of unification through grief. “We will all die, and rest eternally together.” The Grave Keepers watch over Corsul to not only bury the dead, but guard against robbers, the undead, and Dead Gods. The Saint of the Dead and her followers also reside among the cemetery city of Corsul. Massive Iron gates and mourning saints carved from stone surround the city.
Cutthroat Fort – A fortress built from Bloodwood trees in a gorge east of Bloodwood Forest in the Grizzled Peaks. This massive fort is in a difficult position to attack as it is lodged in between grey mountains, with no real way to access it but by climbing. Gruffjaw built this fort as a place for mercs to stay safe from any trouble they may be in, but it comes with a price… allegiance to Gruffjaw and money. If you don’t have the money, you pay it within 30 days or your life is forfeit, and his men take you back to Cutthroat Fort, and… well… Cutthroat isn’t just a clever name. It’s outfitted with guard towers made of wood and stone, Gruffjaw banners fly in the wind there. A massive portcullis and drawbridge are the only way in. Mercs use a pulley system and less than safe elevators to get to the fort.
The Saints, Relics, and Artifacts
- Saints are beings blessed with powers beyond that of mortals.
- Saints appeared thousands of years ago from the cosmos beyond our World.
- The humans worshiped them as Gods and called them Saints.
- Saints are nearly immortal beings that are thousands of years old.
- Some saints protect specific regions of the world. Saints fight in wars alongside the humans that serve them.
- Saint relics and artifacts like armor, weapons, and body parts are scattered throughout the world.
- Humans that have Saint relics and artifacts usually gain miraculous abilities.
- Saints can kill other saints, but there are a small amount of humans throughout history that have killed saints.
- Saint tombs have relics and artifacts that adventurers attempt to steal, religious orders of knights known as Saint Guardians protect the tombs and combat robbers. There are cults that revere Saint corpses and body parts. These types of Artifacts also give people abilities and powers.
- Cathedrals and temples dedicated to the Saints vary dependent upon the area in which they were constructed.
The Historic Timeline of Brutality
EB = Era of Beasts
BSE = Before Saint Era
SE = Saint Era
5000 EB to 1 BSE = Much warmer climates led to the flourishing of (now extinct) gigantic animals and plants. Nothing has survived from that time. It has evolved into the beasts that live in SE or died out. How humans were formed is unknown, but some theorize that they evolved for different beasts into humans. Bones of these creatures can be found all throughout the natural world, and many mythological stories have been made about these creatures.
1 - 1132 BSE = Before the Written Word was discovered. Humans existed in a central location on the continent to the north, and started exploring and settling other regions. Climate reduced in temperature and numerous species could not adapt and died, so humans needed to relocate to find food as numerous food sources died out. Hunting and gathering using primitive tools was starting to happen. In some caves there are drawings from this time. Havenholm scholar-historians have unearthed many bones and tools from this time period. Drawings and excavated remains are all scholars have to go off of.
1132 - 1454 BSE = Various groups begin setting up permanent settlements. Languages and accents start forming as groups migrate and live in different areas. Written word is discovered. Stories start to emerge from each region about simplistic religions of angry gods who consistently ask for sacrifices and offerings to appease their wrath, current Havenholm scholars believe these religions were bound in primitive beliefs and the bones of prehistoric creatures.
1454 - 1876 BSE = Regions are mostly ruled by families with the most strength who can dominate other families and provide protection from invaders, the elements, or food. Agriculture, architecture, and art are basic but advanced compared to the previous time period. Regions begin more accurately writing historical, religious, musical, and instructional texts.
1 - 21 SE = The first Saint to appear to humans is Antigone, in what is now known as Havenholm. She brought knowledge and healing to those in the region and allowed the people to flourish using her gifts. It took her days to learn the primitive language of the people in the region, and she taught those willing to learn her language. There were some interested in maintaining the culture and language of their people, and they migrated south and deviated from the newly named Havenholm. She was worshiped as a god, or as she called herself, a Saint.
21 - 25 SE = Numerous countries attempted to invade Havenholm, but were stopped by the advanced tactics, weaponry, and Antigone herself, who miraculously healed her wounded followers in war.
25 - 178 SE = More Saints appear in various regions of the world. Antigone knows of them all. Some she loathes, some she loves. They are all worshipped as Saints-Imperateaus, "The Ruling Saints." Soon every major populated region has a Saint that protects and teaches their followers. Each society advances thanks to their Saint's influence, but their knowledge learned varied from Saint to Saint. They all were known as the Saint of death, life, war, ghosts, knowledge, etc. This is a golden age of advancements. Art, music, architecture, education, improve drastically under the influence of the Saints. Entire religions are formed around Saints. Their forms of worship vary in different cultures and regions. Because people have mostly adapted to the language of the Saints, the world has one universal language. Accents and pronunciations differ, but most cultures can understand one another. Smaller groups outside of major city-states have held onto their languages and beliefs.
178 - 196 SE = War of the Many - Wars are started for land, natural resources, revenge, or love, and Saints go to war with their followers. Some Saints die in the process of defending their people by fighting against other Saints. More permanent boundary lines are drawn after these wars, and hundreds of thousands die during this time as regions vie for power. Havenholm serves as a mediator to warring countries, as they have evolved beyond wars for other resources or land. They only become involved when (they feel) another country's cause is unjust.
196 - 211 SE = The Great Culling. Demons are summoned through occult practices by the nomadic groups outside of City-states using "the ancient ways." Human sacrifices and horrific rituals bring about numerous savage demons that wreak havoc. This comes on the heels of the War of the Many. There are children who become adults not knowing what peace time looks like, starting from the War of the Many until this time. Saints and Humans are able to kill all Demons except one, who becomes a ruler of Urk'thill. By this point, countries and people are so tired of the wars, that they allow the Demon Knight to rule that region, so long as he stays in his country. Now though, he is known as the Demon King.
211 - 224 SE = An uneasy truce exists between City states. Many have allied with one-another through complicated treaties and post war alliances. Havenholm diplomatically quells potential conflicts through its Queen, Androta. She has kept peace in many countries with fresh wounds that have not yet healed. She is loved by many throughout the City states, but those who crave war do not love her meddling in the geopolitical affairs of other countries...
224 SE - Death to the Queen - Androta is assassinated by Ast’aral, the Assassin from the Forgotten Sands, who was given the task by her Saint. Meanwhile the God Killer has begun killing Saints, including Antigone and the Ghost Saint Maar'ul. War is once again unleashed upon the world because of alliances and vendettas, but many of the countries are still recovering from the last two great-wars, so Mercenaries with relics and Saint forged weapons are called in to fight wars in place of soldiers from regions.
Let the Brutality commence...