Crisis Cycles

Crisis Cycles
RE: Crisis Cycles
Cosmonaut prayer formal
RE: Crisis Cycles
Two hundred years passed on the Plague Plateu. The Orcgarchy, the Federated Tribes and Gildrak Hold has expanded, no longer mere city states with satellite villages, but nations on their right.

However, all this was disturbed when something fell from the moon. A strange vehicle, roaring through the heavens, has descended, barely missing Druzhul Peak Academy. Yet through roaring and burning, it somehow managed to land relatively safely. Rumor has it they are mighty alchemists and warriors, and they are desperate to do whatever it takes to survive in our lands. Perhaps, they are exiles and outcasts, and we should stay away from them? The Federated tribes, who spearheaded many international cooperative programs, reject these negative thoughts, and claim we should help these COSMONAUTs.

Gildrak Hold's culture has descended into a stoic, distrusting outlook, their holds completely guarding the mountain passes and tunnels leading to the eastern desert, where they conduct trade with the distant Easterhomes. Only through distant rumours do we know about the ongoings of these distant dwarven lands. It looks like they are still as merry as Gildrak used to be, if not merrier! Their people wear colourful robes and bowties, and drink strange, effervescent beers out of crystalline mugs, brewn from highly expensive barley. The rich and powerful meet in large chambers, where they intermingle, discuss matter of states, and listen to Stone Music being played on litophone instruments. There are plans for international meetups of leaders, in a pastiche of these FORMAL events.

The plague of emphatic empathy had its toll on the population. Even though the cursed hives were destroyed, some feared the ghastly mosquitoes might return in a new form, carrying something nastier, a new kind of madness, a new kind of pain. It was not just baseless superstition, but genuine magic: if a priest mage lead the group in PRAYER, using modified Listener magic, the believers were enveloped by a shimmering blue light, which tinted the people for several days, and filled them with positive thinking. There are rumors about them building a new holy city...

Inheritable Cultures:
The Federated Tribes of Gadesu and Ranitezia (lizardpeople and elves)
Gildrak Hold (dwarves)
The Orcgarchy (mainly orcs, but many other folks present from all over the realm)

Established Species:

New species (and some plothooks):
Shamir, resurfacing again
The moon people
People from the western jungle, could be responsible to the raid that kicked off the plague, or innocent in this.

Culture Name: What is the name of your culture? During the first era, this is also the name of your city state.
Banner Colour: What colour represents your city state?
Government and Leader: Who leads this place? Tell us about the system, and this person.
Society: What can you tell about your culture?
Species: What is your species? This is especially important choice, as creating new species will be rarer in later ages. You may have mixed City States of course.
Stances on the three changes: Tell us how your culture handles the changes: do they embrace them, or deny them? If you embrace a change, you will divert resources towards it, if you deny it, you will divert resources away from it. If you embrace everything, you are a generalist, if you deny all of them, you are a subversive element.
Major cultural influence: Pick one of the previous cultures to be a major influence on your new culture! You can even pick someone else’s culture.  You may also replace an en existing culture. Perhaps you represent a new Dynasty, or maybe a new people who absorbed a previous culture. Or you can be a culture that seceded from their parent culture.

Since multiple people might have plans about inheriting the same culture, collaborate on your stories, because if someone wants to be Druzhul Peak Academy seceding from their homeland, and someone else talks about conquering Gildrak Hold, they should discuss this with each other, to prevent conflicts.
RE: Crisis Cycles
Culture Name: The Tuvarii Republic, ruling the City-State of Tuvarith

Banner Colour: Red

Government and Leader: Though originally inspired by the tribal consulate of the Federated Tribes, the Tuvarii Republic has only one Consul, and a more formally organized legislature of prominent urban families and tribal leaders. The government is far more centralized, with some cues taken from dwarven monarchy without giving up the representation of the Gadesu and Ranitezia.

Consul Arlial is the current Consul of the Tuvarii Republic. He is a tall elf with long silvery hair, usually adorned in flowing white and red robes. Arlial rose to prominence over the last fifty years, where he led military campaigns to annex the lands in the nearby western jungles. He has recently risen to prominence as the new Consul, replacing old Consul Turilan, who retired to one of his garden estates.

Society: Tuvarith was founded by elves from the Ranitezia tribe, originally choosing to flee the city of the Federated Tribes to escape the plague. Many of them were afflicted, and experienced a number of bizarre and occult visions and distorted memories in their feverish state. Something in what they experienced changed them, and they were no longer the carefree Ranitezian elves they had once been. Some of them claim they had a moment of divine revelation. These elves became more driven and disciplined, founding a new city on a small island in the lake attached to the River Orc, seeking refuge from the plague. Though still individualistic, they turned this into an independence, seeking to become doers as well as thinkers, and seeking to dedicate themselves to a new degree of perfection in all things. Taking advantage of their long lives, the new Tuvarii sought to constantly learn, constantly train and practice, constantly strive to improve themselves, and become the best they could be.

A short time after the city was founded, a small group of exiled dwarves showed up. They were clean-shaven and carved with runes, having rejected dwarven culture and followed the example of the Shaven King Dagram II (and been shunned from all dwarven society for shaving off their beards). They brought dwarven knowledge with them, and in exchange for a place in the city and granting this knowledge to the Consul of Tuvarith, they were treated well and welcomed into the new society. Few other dwarves left their isolationist holds to follow their example, and as such shaven dwarves make up a tiny part of the population of the city of Tuvarith. Even so, their introduction of dwarven metalworking and runecarving secrets early in the history of Tuvarith helped the Tuvarii strive for quality in all their crafts and works.

In time, this new city of Tuvarith began to draw in elven youths from the Federated Tribes, when they went out to explore and learn. The strange search for strength and perfection in Tuvarith caught the attention of some, and they joined the Tuvarii. However, less of those born in the Tuvarith chose to leave - the belief that they were seeking perfection and superiority tied them to their growing society. Over time, the population quickly grew, with some elves surviving even since the founding of the city. This pursuit of perfection turned to their surroundings, which were turned from wild heaths and woodland into gardens and productive farmsteads. Some focused on invention, seeking to drive the Tuvarii towards perfection by means of natural philosophy, mathematics, architecture, infrastructure. Much of what they learned was copied from the other cultures, though combined and improved.

The Tuvarii elves became obsessed with this pursuit of quality, of being the most intelligent, most powerful, most dominant they could be, and took it even someplace elves had never willingly gone in the past - to the battlefield, in skirmishes against the Orcgarchy and the patterned junglefolk. The Tuvarii gained a healthy respect for the combat prowess of the orcs, and ended up making a truce. Still, from that experience, their might grew. With spear and sword, with armour inspired by dwarven secrets, with perfect coordination and formation fighting, the Tuvarii created a new style of orderly and disciplined warfare, with resolute formations of troops moving fluidly together and marching in time. With peace secured with the orcs, they turned west, and subjugated some of the junglefolk tribes. They fight to strengthen Tuvarith and supply it with resources, so that they can focus on producing perfection within the city. And to a degree, they believe they are helping the "poor frogmen", teaching them their language and letters, and slowly turning them culturally into proper, perfect Tuvarii.

Species: The primary Tuvarii are elves. In Tuvarith, elves are not carefree and cheerful Ranitezians. Though they are still graceful, skilled in magic and fond of art and music, there is a rigid discipline to them that you do not find to the north. It is right and proper for a Tuvarii elf to dedicate themselves to mastering multiple talents and professions, spending years and years continuously improving themselves so that each individual elf is a master of multiple skills.

Under the elves, unable to easily emulate their high pursuit of perfection due to having far more mortal lifespans, are the junglefolk - particularly the Esklin tribes. Resembling anthropomorphic frogs, with colourful patterned skins and large eyes, they are usually thin and wiry, and more fast than strong. Despite not being able to fully follow the philosophy of the elves, the Tuvarii junglefolk who have been annexed by the Republic may still be swayed by the perfection philosophy of Tuvarith and dedicate themselves tirelessly to a single craft. Often this ties into their family's profession from before they were subjugated, which means quite a few of them end up joining the armoured and disciplined formations of the Tuvarii legions.

Stances on the three changes: The Cosmonauts are interesting. In their pursuit of perfection, the Tuvarii need to understand the secrets of the heavens, as well as the secrets of the earth they learned from the dwarves. They look to the cosmonauts with interest, and may wish for them to join the growing Tuvarii Republic.

The Formal galas of the distant dwarves offer a unique chance to display and embrace culture. By absorbing and improving upon this practice, the Tuvarii culture will be strengthened and driven closer to perfection.

Prayer has its place in Tuvarith. Many hold an almost religious belief in their own philosophy of quality and superiority, and Priests of Perfection play a role in educating and indoctrinating those who are a part of the Republic, as well as blessing and bolstering the legions by invoking their own belief in their discipline and unbeatable might.

Major cultural influence: The Tuvarii were originally Ranitezians, and the individuality, magic and inventiveness of the Ranitezians runs as a thread through much of Tuvarii culture. Even so, they have massively diverged from their parent society, becoming a wholly different beast - and the Ranitezians are probably looking on with disappointment and growing alarm. Beyond that, there is definitely some dwarven influence in their society, despite the lack of actual dwarves. The interactions between the original Tuvarii elves and the dwarven exiles helped colour and shape their culture to be more centralized and structured.
RE: Crisis Cycles
Culture Name: The Worm Republic 

Banner Colour: Desert Sand(#EDC9AF)

Government and Leader: The Worm Republic is a council democracy, inspired by the assemblies of the Federated Tribes. Local councils elect the Worm Knights, who act in the dual purpose of community leaders and defenders of the people. The head of the Worm Knights is known as the Knight-Consul. In order to keep the Knights accountable to the people, the Shamir have a tendency of sending secret messages to their leaders attached to ceremonial rune-knives.

Knight-Consul Ulu is the bravest and most noble of the Worm Knights. Her mask is carved with large and expressive eyes, and a kind face. She wears red robes with purple stripes, and shining rune-crafted armor.

Society: When the Shamir returned to their homeland from the Plateau, they discovered a terrible crisis had struck the deserts as well. The ancient underground homes of the Shamir were in danger, being collapsed by a mysterious force! The returning Shamir, having survived the crisis in the plateau, were equipped with new ideas on how to fix things. Using the medicine and advanced runecrafting they learned in the plateau, they helped save their people.

When the damage was all done, the Shamir looked to their saviors in awe and asked them to be their leaders. The returning worm-riders were very impressed by the Federated Tribes, and decided to adapt their way of life to the Shamir. The Worm-Knights became the protectors of their people, and the Shamir entered an era of rebuilding.

Now, after many long years, the Shamir are ready to go out into the world once more. They have sent a delegation in secret to the Plateau as they did once long ago, and soon will open direct contact.

Species: Shamir

Stances on the three changes:

The Shamir support the Cosmonauts, as both are outsiders to the Plateau.

Although they like merriment, the Shamir never trusted the dwarves fully and thus are Against the Formal balls.

Finally, the Shamir have their own ancient practices and don't need Prayer.

Major cultural influence: The returning Shamir took many ideas from Gadesu and Ranitesia, though of course they inherited much from their own culture as well.
Current Projects:
Human space is at war, and we're all caught up in it - Scattered Stars

A woman chases another through the snow, but where will their path lead them? - Footprints in the snow
RE: Crisis Cycles
Culture Name: New Orcgarchy is the most common name given by outsiders.

The more formal term is Windrose Alliance – after the city-state Windrose. New Orgarchy also has been called “Romance of the Four Cardinals” in poetry, literature or if the author just felt like being particularly fancy.

Banner Colour: Green as usual.

Government and Leader: Inheritable Monarchy. While technically, there has no rule confirming this, any eligible heirs tend to be in relation, however distant, to Yarthuryay. A nobility class (predominantly descendants of friends and/or family to the now deceased King Yarthuryay) had recently emerged, benefitting much from the economic prosperity of the former Orcgarchy. Unsurprisingly, they are ambitious and conspiring – but those surely are good qualities, right?

The Settled Listeners also emerged to sociopolitical prominence. They serve as the pseudo-checks-and-balance to the government and the ruling class as most orcs would defer to the words of these wisefolk as Yarthuryay had been a Listener themselves. Unfortunately, Settled Listeners are wizards, not exactly politicians. In addition, the legacy of their crimes, which started the Empathy Plague, still carry on.

The current ruler is the Warlord Ordredmay. Ordredmay does not seem to have outright unpleasant qualities, both physical and personality-wise. However, he does have an unfortunate tendency to inspire anger in others. It may be the fact he is an Elf Weeaboo. He thinks the Tuvarii and their republic, culture, and everything are particular hot-shit and seeks to emulate them. If he has to rebuild his city-state from the ground up – so be it!

Society: New Orcgarchy is still separated into four districts. The Cardinal districts are semi-autonomous and still expected to solve their own dang problems. However, the boundaries had been more relaxed with the sportsmanship and healthy competition of all stripes.

The rulers of the four districts are unsurprisingly called Cardinals because it made sense and orcs aren’t all that creative. Interestingly enough, Cardinals are democratically elected. This often comes at odds at the nepotism of ruling class and the meritocracy inclinations of Settled Listeners.

Culture wise. New Orcgarchy tends to be assimilationist. Temporary visitors (i.e. tourists or delegates) are exempt. However, any non-orc expected to make long-term residence in Orcgarchy are expected to take up cultural peculiarities of the predominant orcs, including awkwardly shoving orcs into the species names. While outright animosity towards those who buck norms is frowned upon, there tend to be passive aggression – which is just as bad.

Species: Orcs! Green pig-men who can go berserk. Orcs make up the majority population among New Orcgarchy. The modern (for this era) orc is still competitive but eager for fights – but in a more cosmopolitan way. They valuable confrontation in both physical and cerebral sense – an intense game of chess or fashion design is just as satisfying as good ol’ fashioned fisticuffs…although the grandpas beg to differ.

Gadesu, or as they call themselves “Gadorcsu.” They make a small but not insignificant percentage of New Orcgarchy. Gadesu in New Orcgarchy had thrived as their respect for ancestors synergized well with the jocular sportsmanship of the orcs. Gadesu tend to be craftsmen because government-sanctioned family business but more Gadesu are going to greener pastures.

“Dworcs” (dwarves and dwarf-descents) and “Orcves” (elves and elf-descents, mostly Ranitezian expatriates) are minority populations in New Orcgarchy. This is not surprising considering the recent political shuffles and the plague had encourage civilians to settle in the relatively peaceful Orcgarchy.

Stances on the three changes: The Orcgarchy supports the cosmonauts. With their marvelous technology, they surely would make great competitors.

The Orcgarchy thinks the dwarves descent to formality is a degeneration. Those two hundred years had done much to weaken the historical alliance between the dwarves and the orcs. The orcs still are their friends, but they more pity them than see them as true equals.

The Orcgarchy generally approve of the new prayer magic. After all, a good offense against the plague is the best defense against an even worse plague. Still, the new holy city gives the Orcgarchy some suspicion about their motivations…

Major cultural influence: New Orcgarchy is a continuation of Orcgarchy – thus is consequently influenced by the legacy of King Yarthuryay, both in deed and in blood. The alliance with the dwarves and the marvelous technology from such industrious stoutfolk had done much to launch Orcgarchy from squabbling clans to a metropolis. It is obvious Gildrak Hold is a big influence on the Orcgarchy.
RE: Crisis Cycles
Culture Name: The Half-men of Knocnorie, in the city of Karkosa

Banner Colour: Yellow

Government and Leader: Empress Kuvan she-who-dances-with-dreams. She who wears robes of gold, has limbs of doves and the face of bone. Blessed most keenly and lucidly with visions of her people, with rare patience and discipline she leads her people and makes judgement. She is in her 30s now assumedly, and was chosen for the role nearly two decades ago when she danced with Emperor Caroia he-who-is-blessed-of-winds during the public ceremony of wandering stars, a yearly event where strange lights form over the city of Karkosa and all halflings become whole in the celebration.

She is aided in her decisions and bureaucratic responsibilities by the priests of Truth, other Half-men that are allowed to wear the golden robes and fill out the government roles. Knocnorie is a spiritual theocracy through and through and all official roles come with official clothing of varying degrees of yellow and other titles, be it the priests of war, the priests of healing, the priests of knowledge, etc for their military, their doctors and their education, so on.

Society: Half-men believe that unlike the other species of the realm, half of themselves exists in the realm of magic and soul, how well one comes to know their other half-self leads to fulfillment and power, and one can never truly die so long as both selves still exist, only being born again. So in times of sadness or woe, then surely some affliction has come upon their soul-self that is affecting their body. They live out deep in the jungle, and are a fairly recent society. Maybe only a couple of centuries old. Tales from back then imply that a madness and sickness swept through the jungle that overcame the adults of their tribes, leaving only the young-lings as survivors, changed by the experience. The children of tribes came together and traveled to the holy city of Karkosa, a city they had been forbidden to approach by their elders. There they found abandoned lodgings, strange writings and artifacts, and when they slept there, their dreams became peaceful and lucid rather than the night-terrors they'd been scarred with by the plague of mosquitoes that drove their parents to death, and these wild dreams now blessed their descendants too but without the lethality and terror the initial plague brought.

Generations down the line, Half-men now wield magic daggers honed to sharpness in the stepped pyramid that sits in the center of Karkosa that helps them channel their magic as weapon implements. They regularly use elixers formed from jungle fruits and mosquitoes to trigger dreams in themselves now, dreams of madness and symbols as they believe that the madness that originally swept over them and led to the formation of their people is actually a pathway to truth and power for those able to survive the deep delves into that realm.

They are currently beginning to expand their holy city and prepare to grow due to their population influx, taking the current signs from the heavens that the time has come for the people of Knocnorie to spread back out proper into the jungle they came from originally. Currently the city of Karkosa has been taking inspiration from the dwarven manufacture of cities in the expansion of Karkosa's city borders and addition of new buildings.

Species: The Half-men, or halflings as they are more scientifically called, are a small, sinewy people of brown and yellow hair. They have almost the same size as a child, or a very young teen, but are closer proportionally to adults and have the nearly the same strength and quicker speed than bigger humans despite their size. They have multiple sets of small sharp teeth that seem to easily come out but grow back quickly. They only live for about 60 years, and mature quickly. They also seem to have a pretty aggressive metabolism, and much more rapid heartbeat and bloodflow than other species due to maybe having a larger heart, and seem to be innately very good at surviving poisons and disease that rapidly flush through their system. They can wield magic but it is a strange, inherent thing and they have no truck with formalised arcane writings and instead use tools and meditations and natural rituals to connect to it and truck with the spirits that guide magic.

Stances on the three changes: The roaring descent of the COSMONAUTS has been taken as a glorious portent of the future, a sign of some great change in the spirit world, that it is a new time and the ways of the old in this realm will begin to change, and that all the half-men must seize this moment too as surely as their soul-halves are.

The hierarchy of the priest of Truths and those under them remains, but celebrations and dances and music now fill each night enough to rival the yearly ceremony of the wandering stars as jubilation and wildness sweeps the city, eruptions of joyous magic and quick spirits and tempers are spreading as an emotional renaissance sweeps through the half-men. The leaders of the city may be interested in seeing the FORMAL events of other countries and cities, as a beginning to make themselves known to the world at large.

They have their own priests and magic ceremonies, and their own views on mosquitoes leading them to an unfortunate disparity of views of the PRAYER magic sweeping the land

Major cultural influence: People from the western jungle. Descended from tribes of the forest that used to also survive and war with the frogmen, now they have begun to form their own proper civilisation. From their greater position of strength, they still do business with the frogmen, buying toxins and hallucinogenics, and spirits and draughts from them.

From the Ranitezians, the Halfling people have adopted a love of music, art, community and herbs and magic and drugs.
"Don't get me started on Henchmen."
RE: Crisis Cycles
Culture Name: Free Koonibisu Matriarchate

Banner Colour: Pale Green and Red

Government and Leader: The current ruler is indisputably the Matriarch Kotol Ibisu, a descendant of the First Matriarch via Her third daughter. She is terse and outspoken, yet also one of the most skilled musicians of Koon. Leaving most military pursuits to generals appointed by her Councillors, her focus as leader has been inward, maintaining unity and pmatronising what remains of the elven arts.

Despite often calling themselves 'Free', this is more describing Koonese freedom from norms and conventions theybelieve failed to stop the plagues and are holding the elves back from their true destiny. Power on the surface is centralised under House Ibisu while a Conclave of five Councillors (four elves, one dwarf) is assigned various responsibilities underneath the Matriarchate.


While some elves chose to flee the other tribes, those they left behind inherited empty fields and forced to look after each other. In some cases, men even abandoned their plague-riddled wives, leaving them to rot. And yet, of these people, some survived their sickness via unknown means. Songs and dance were preserved and the elven spirit unbroken, but yet these became twisted. Happy tunes grew mournful and acerbic. Instead of fight the disease, the First Matriarch received extraordinary prescient visions while afflicted by a strain of the mosquitoes and led elves willing to follow her to 'embrace' the plague, forming a coven of followers immune or resistant to the more ghastly symptoms. Ever since, children in the Matriarchate are ritually inoculated with mosquito venom as a rite of passage. A handful of the insectlike beings are kept bound in captivity for this purpose, as well as for experimentation and other perceived medicinal qualities.

While only a few joined her from each tribe, their numbers eventually grew larger than the Matriarch could support. After squabbling over precious resources, her movement armed themselves best they could and congregated on the South bank of the River Ran for a bloody vendetta upon a western settlement of Dwarves that previously denied them precious food, shelter and medical aid. At first, the Matriarch was unsuccessful and unprepared for a stout defence and she was forced to change her approach. By destroying eastward tunnelways to prevent resupply then pouring mud and oil down the shafts to trap and burn through the heavily-armoured dwarves, the elves began to take the upper hand. They overwhelmed the survivors via venom-crazed mass assaults and the dwarves were eventually forced to surrender. However, these tactics shocked some of the Matriarch's less fervent followers into abandoning her cause and returning to their tribes.

Upon a bloody victory, this settlement was christened Koon and has been off-limits to outsiders ever since. Despite skirmishes with neighbours, it has grown both in size and depth, having taken up excavation where the dwarves left off and repopulated/annexed some abandoned elven settlements on the south bank of the Ran. While mostly having a stable food supply by mixing what little they've learned of dwarven underground agriculture with more traditional means, it has proven expensive to maintain.

Koon is stratified due to its shape, with each Councillor controlling a different level within the Undercity. Those at the very bottom are born and live in nothing but glow-worm light, cursed by past shame and failure to loyally serve their kin - or so they are taught. In exchange for their service in the mines and caverns, their children are given the chance to ascend to the Lightrealm. Despite this apparent inequality, tribal boundaries within Koon have been quashed and eroded down to a distant memory of past division.

Species: While dominated by elves, Koon is increasingly referred to as their own people, derogatorily labelled 'low elves' Most appear as any other elves, though their dress and mannerisms have begun to change substantially. The only outsider species is a small minority of dwarves, descending from the original inhabitants of what became Koon. They were initially treated as a caste of indentured servants, Koonian Dwarves gained most of the rights of the elves after helping them avoid famine and disaster while adapting to life underground.

Stances on the three changes: Deny Cosmonaut (while craving technology, they prefer to take what they desire and discard any knowledge that might cause disunity in Koon), Deny Formality (perceived as a crass pursuit of unobtainable perfectionism), Deny Prayer (antithetical to the doctrine of embracing disease and struggle instead of praying to ward it off)

Major cultural influence: Despite hatred of most dwarves, dwarven culture has yet influenced the 'low elves' via the manuscripts, architecture and prisoners taken during the formation of Koon, fusing into the traditions elves brought with them from their various tribes. Contact with orcs is usually pleasant and attempts at establishing trade routes are underway.
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RE: Crisis Cycles
Culture Name: The Terrestrial Bastion of Vallis Marginis, home to the Lunar Exiles

Banner Color: EXILE’S VIOLET

Government and Leader: The Lunar Exiles are led by Their Exalted and Most Supreme Majesty Synodia I, formerly one of the Seven Empyreal Monarchs, now deposed and exiled alongside thousands of High Selenians for crimes declared unspeakable by the Heinous Usurper who now sits upon Their throne. Though Synodia’s word is, technically and legally, Absolute Factual Law, most matters of government are delegated to the Seventh Council, a coalition of semi-elected leaders that spend as much time debating as they do actually governing.

To their credit, the Council’s constant bickering has left plenty of opportunity for the rest of the Exiles to mostly make their own way in the world unrestrained by the red tape of bureaucracy. So far, this has worked out fine.

Society: In short, the Exiles’ society is modeled roughly after the society of the moon itself, albeit on a smaller scale. Included is the borderline-deification of Synodia, cheerfully revering Them and telling everyone they meet how great They are. This also includes an increasingly-begrudging respect for the other Six Empyreal Monarchs, though it’s becoming hard to reconcile how, in Their greatness, they would not seek to restore Synodia to Their proper Throne. To outsiders, it probably seems more like a weird, but fortunately benign cult. At least they’re eager to make friends with those who don’t actively disrespect their traditions.

The Exiles are a secretive bunch, and their society is built entirely around the crashed remains of their great, still-partly-shining escape vessel, the Syzygy, which embedded itself partway into the ground as part of their flight from the Heinous Usurper. Within the Syzygy are said to be many strange and unknown wonders, which are kept as closely-guarded secrets. Still, rumors persist of shining machine-men with glass domes for heads, of silver weapons lancing beams of destructive fire wherever they point, of the power of flight itself contained in a box small enough to wear like a backpack.

Any number of these wonders may still exist, but it’s very hard to actually keep things functioning when your generator was irreparably damaged in a crash some 20 years ago. Most of the Exiles have opted at this point for conventional arms when they need to defend themselves.

However, while the Syzygy itself is a closely-kept secret, the Exiles are not hostile to outsiders. On the contrary, they have been more than happy to share the knowledge of their other main craft besides Strange Technologies - the alchemical sciences, perfected in the great Empyreal Universities and capable of Untold Wonders! They may exaggerate some how impossibly wondrous their alchemy actually is, but it’s certainly impressive all the same.

Additionally, terrestrial folks are welcomed in the Bastion and the surrounding territories. Honestly, with only a few thousand Exiles, they’re going to need all the help they can get.

Species: The High Selenians, known to most terrestrial folk as the “moon people” or “COSMONAUTS”. In truth, a coalition of the Seven Species that hold domain over the moon, the distinction between which is mostly lost on the majority of outsiders. It probably doesn’t help that the majority of Selenians traveling beyond the Bastion do so in the Traditional Garb of Lunar Explorers everywhere - brightly shimmering suits of a strange and alien material, with a bubble-like helmet of oddly durable glass. This obfuscates the particulars a bit, but it’s fashionable and safe.

Stances on the Three Changes: The Lunar Exiles are the COSMONAUTS, so… make of that what you will. Some think that their exile here is only temporary, and that they will one day reclaim their leader’s LUNAR THRONE. Others feel that the Exiles must look to the future rather than the past - this is their world now, and they must adapt to it. Synodia’s stance on the matter is as of yet unclear.

On paper, at least, the Lunar Exiles look favorably on the FORMAL gatherings of the dwarves. It’s important to show respect to an Empyreal Monarch with proper partying technique, after all, and they assume that this holds true in terrestrial kingdoms as well. Ultimately, the Exiles just like to party.

Terrestrial Folks’ PRAYERS are new to the Exiles, and they don’t yet know what to make of it all. That said prayer can apparently grant these people strange powers is certainly fascinating, but it’s more of a scientific interest than spiritual.

Major Cultural Influence: Though the Exiles have sent diplomatic missions to many of the Terrestrial Folk, it was the dwarves of Gildrak Hold that they obtained the most practical knowledge of. Many lunar building techniques do not hold up on a world with so much gravity, which posed challenges for building shelter - but with Dwarven engineering techniques, the Exiles have developed a sort of Better Living Underground philosophy, delving into the earth around their crashed escape vehicle to build a largely subterranean, and quite well-defended, society.
RE: Crisis Cycles
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The Federated Tribes are desperately reaching out for unity among the increasingly tension filled Plateau and beyond...
Meanwhile, King Dagram III, is talking about reinvigorating the glory of Gildrak Hold, so it is more than just magnificent architecture of the past...
What will the others do?

NPC leaders:
King Dagram III of Gildrak Hold
King Garmad X of Enkre Hold, the Ancient Hold, over the mountains and the desert.
Co-consul Bardox and Co-consul Marlianne of the Federated Tribes.
RE: Crisis Cycles
Rejoice everyone! For the PRAYER OF PROTECTION sect has been given a holy city! They moved into the easternmost orc hold, and redecorated it into the magnificent holy fort of Sunrise Shield. From here, their Pontifex Of Protection talk about the need to protect your body and soul about diseases, and that everyone must beware the new faiths spreading all over the plateau.
RE: Crisis Cycles
Gildrak Hold's farmer holds have suddenly became extremely fortified.
RE: Crisis Cycles
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After intense diplomacy, the Federated Tribes have given in to the Tuvarii Republic's demands, hoping to avoid bloodshed. Each of its cities are now a separate autonomous region, with Tuvarii administrators and Priests Of Perfection present. The areas south of the Great City have been put under direct control. The plans for a New Dove Concordat have been indefinitely postponed.

It has been leaked, that the initial negotiation were held in a FORMAL party (but with herb music instead of stone music), where the diplomat, Arlial's daughter Micans, has punched another diplomat in the snout.
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The Windrose Alliance is now part of the Tuvarii Republic, as a Praetoriate!
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The ORCLYMPICS has begun! Everybody is welcome to join the great ORCLYMPIC VILLAGE, visitors and participators alike! They can also visit the the new, majestic museum of orcish sport, see the inspiring exhibitions. Perhaps FORMAL might shift to SPORTS...
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Dwarves arrive, wearing colourful armor! They must be from the fabled Enkre hold! They shore up the defenses of Gildrak Hold's territories, and proclaim that they will protect their people, in the name of their ancestors. They also have some terrifying contraptions with them.

Some orcs arrive to the orclympics, from the distant southern side of the plateau, who claim to be cowherds, and are mainly here to hawk their wares and MAYBE join the sports.
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Even Koon and the Karkosa have sent athletes! Truly unified in SPORTS.
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The Shamir arrive, somehow! While the rest of the athletes gawk at the orclympics opening cerenomy, which include things like staged combat and mist bat airshows, the Shamir athletes wobble next to the others, and pretend that they have been here all along.
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In the minor ex-federated republic areas, there have been protests about Tuvari occupation, seemingly trying to get a rise out of Tuvarii troops. However, situations got diffused by local police Ranitezans and Gadesu. There has been attacks on military buildings, and Tuvarii officials, but the guards easily repelled the attackers.
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There has been an assault on two Tuvarii cities! It caused a lot of damage, but the attack was repelled, and the tunnel seized, which helped out with Tuvarii's plans to expand into the jungle, which is a kinda perilous place.

It is time for Crisis! Which one should be the cause of terror: COSMONAUT, FORMAL or PRAYER?
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The roaring applause at the Orclympics celebrates STRENGTH, AGILITY and DEXTERITY. Everyone of the Plague Plateau is inspired to move more, and reach peak performance! The dwarven parties are going out of fashion at rapid speed, and the drug fuelled lifestyle of northern elves, and the jungle religion might be out of fashion soon, as it is replaced by a more ascetic meditation, as inspired by the athlete training regiments. 

Gildrak hold, growing staid, is facing an internal struggle, especially since a lot of the locals have to care for foreign dwarven soldiers, and they have to supply their even more colourful parties. Mobs form, and cry out to stop this decadence... Even Druzhul Peak is upset. While they prefer mental gymnastics to real ones, they had enough of parties.

A bunch of dwarves cross over the border to the Orcgarchy! No, they are not defecting from Gidrak Hold. They just want a break from stasis. And instead of serving the aforementioned visiting soldiers, they want to participate in something everyone can enjoy. They want to compete in the Orclympics!

Your MAJOR EDICT is here! It has three parts, and all parts must pertain to this cultural shift of FORMAL. Beware, for this will dictate the path of your culture for the future.

Also, if you are planning a war, this will result in a multi step miniturn.
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The war for Koon was ardous, and full of surprises. The Koonites tried to block their new tunnel, but the shaven dwarves of the Tuvarii aided them in thundering through. While Koon prepared for a bloody battle in the hold, where they had the advantage, Tuvarii had different plans: build a fort around the entrance, guarded mainly by orcs, and build tunnels around the hold, to make sure no one could escape unnoticed. While making these tunnels, they managed to find a tunnel heading north, to the land of the Federated Tribes, along with a procession of civilians. They were captured as prisoners of war, their ghost mosquitoes confiscated.

The orcs used wandering listener magic on them to find out where the rest of the civilians were heading: north of the Gad river. A quick word to the northern police forces rounded up almost all of them, as they were passing through, along with most of the self proclaimed resistance.

The orcs infused their MistBats with the Ghost Mosquitoes, creating comBats, and harassed the Koonites by playing loud sports on the surface. They also played golf, with explosive balls. As the earth shook under the orcs, the Koonites were trying to capture the Tuvarii miners. However they have slowed down, deploying traps and alarms, and were repelled. On the other hand, the slower process of mining meant Koon head time to dig labyrinthine distraction tunnels, and in desperation, dug straight down, where they have found a strange cave, full of plants glowing blood red. The civilians all escaped, as the guards, high on Madness Magic, slaughtered a miner party who happened upon them in circumventillation.

The majority of Koon was captured. A few escaped, to the horrifying depths below. Will they survive? Could this place by tied to the terrible earthquakes that wrecked the Shamir lands so many years ago?

King Dagram III has gone down in history as Disaster King Dagram. He tried to backstab Koon, by telling them that he will get military help from Enkre Hold, to help defend Koon. He also claimed he will help liberate the Ex-federated tribes lands. But only if Koon hands over  their hold. Eventually he dropped the liberation part, and when the Enkre Troops arrived, lugging their terrible Dwarven Fire engines with themselves, he stationed them on the borders, and did not give any to Koon, despite promising they will join in military efforts.

During the war, he tried to coax the remaining Koon civilians to escape through the dwarven lands, planning to capture them, but the Koonite spies saw through him. He then tried to make a deal with the Tuvarii: he will help take over Koon if he gets it back. He however, denied the counteroffer: he refused to become a Praetoriate. The people of the farm holds rebelled, having enough of this wishy washy, backstabber. Declaring themselves Rotpah Holds (Plow And Sports), they pushed out the decadent Enkre Hold troops via protests and throwing tomatoes. The Enkre hold troops tried to intimidate them by using Dwarven Fire (which in peace times is mainly used to burn away rock), but burning down their houses just further incensed the mob.

In the end, Gildrak hold still has an amount of mountain holds, but they are now at the risk of starving, and they are in no position to get food via force. Enkre Hold broke connection with them, blaming Gidrak's leadership for their people becoming such undwarflike. Dagram III gave in to the demands. Meanwhile, Druzhul Peak, likewise disgusted with their leadership, declared themself to become a tributary to the Bastion of the moon people, which surprised everyone, especially the moon people. Not like they didn't have plans for this, but they were surprised by the speed of which happened.

The Windrose Praetoriate became a great ally, and henchorc, to the Tuvarii republic, loyally following orders in battles, and helping with the survelliance of the nation, starting the Orcquisition on their path to root out any dissent, particularly amoung ex-Koonites. They also formalized the Orclympics: it consists of Gladiatoral Combat (not to the death), modernized Wrestleball, Athletic Performance, Obstacle Courses (in ridicolous costumes; this made it truly a game without borders), along with many more lesser sports. The rules were surprisingly quickly finalized, with the aid of the Tuvarii elves of course, and became a standard for the centuries. Its effectiveness? We will look at that later...

The combined power of the Orclympics, Tuvarii building stadiums, and the Giant Orc Museum Of Sports, orc culture is spreading. In many place, inside and outside the republic, people who are not orcs are slowly starting to refer to themselves as orc, wearing orc clothes, doing orc things. Also the Herder Orc Clans are petitioning to be part of Windrose, or at least, part of the republic. The Republic favours the second option, and soon, the Herder Clan Autonomous Region is born.

The Tuvarii didn't only expand on the rules of sport: they also expanded further in the coming years, snatching up empty lands of the plateau, and even made further forays into the jungle. They gave most of the land to veterans, especially to veterans native to those lands, such as Esklin in the jungle, Orcs near Windrose, and Tribesfolk in the north. They were also giving lands to citizens who were succesful at sports.

The people of the Bastion, also turned to earthly matters: sports. They kept probing at the edges of what is legal according to the rules. Despite the Tuvarii catchign on, and patching up the leaks, the Bastion tried again and again, under the guise of expanding the horizon of SPORTS. Their new dwarven friends helped them a lot in this quest, especially in creating the serums and Carving based equipment, that trained a group of SUPER ATHLETES. Sadly the enhanced athletes gained a large dose of bloodlost, so they were better at full contact sports, but it helped spread an image of the power of moon-druzhul science. There was also a showing of pure moon science: when it was the turn of the selenian team to show off during the opening ceremony, they were using some of their new batteries to fly in the stadium using their flight packs (the act was meticolously planned, to enable the team to do as many flight stunts as they could before landing). They also held a miniature science expo. In the future years, the moon people were seen as very powerful and terrifying folk, which made some people look to the sky with fear, as many more astronomers started to notice the war in heaven...

The half-men continued their business of spreading their culture of drugs and wild art. Disbarred from conventionel trade, they can only do it through the guise of diplomacy, via their ambassadors. They manage to spread their message even in lands such as Sunrise Shield, the Holy City Of Protection, which is no small feat, especially since orcishm customs officers started to pop up. Their message and art (mixed with frog people art) spreads, mainly among the higher ranks of the new jungle towns...

They also trained their athletes via extremely harsh regimen, which includes fighting, fruits and drugs. They scored rather well, and even when the orclympics rules clamped down on their drug use, they keeped up the habit of Furious Training. Soon, every morning the city of Karkosa was loud with the yells of the athletes doing their morning training routines...

They also made an attempt at creating a new caste: the explorer caste. By exploring the world, they broad their horizons, and explore themselves too. Soon, the Knocnoriens explored the rest of the western jungle, and all of its borders. They even found a hitherto unknown tribe of lizardmen, who looked similar to the Gadesu. Sadly, unlike halfism, this lifestyle didn't really catch on among outsider. However, they can say about many things, that they were the first to see them. Some are even planning to sail away to distant lands, hearing rumors about several sunken ancient seafaring boats in the great lake of the jungle. Will their plans succeed?

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Enkre hold has retreated, and chalked up Gildrak Hold as a lost hold, stopping their caravans. Instead, they focused on the other two descendant holds, in the rolling meadows of the distant north and the redwood lands of the east, and pretended the Plateau and its mountains does not exist. They carried on their formal parties.

Worm Intelligence Network (WIN), an espionage arm of the Shamir worm knights have mixed feelings about the success of their operations. When they tampered with the votes of the VOTE circle of Enkre Hold elders, they were hoping the addition of Dwarven Fire would help their friends. At least, they still managed to steal its secrets of the substance, even if they couldn't replicate the delivery mechanism. They are also happy that Enkre hold cut ties with Gildrak.

Litte did everyone else know, that during the war, the Shamirs offered a deal of friendship and alliance to Druzhul Peak. Druzhul Peak accepted in secret, and got a large amount of builder worms in return. This was one of the sparks that helped them declare their independence, or rather, swapping of alliegences. Of course, they did not tell their new selenian suzerains about their worm connection, and they have helped the Shamir perfect and improve their concotions. The Shamir Fire, a new kind of alchemical fire that is combined with Carving magic, has been born...

The worm knights who were sent to infiltrate the orclympics stuck around, and called themselves The Shamorcs, working as mercenaries, and training their wiggly muscles. They have became pretty popular.

WIN meanwhile, infiltrated the northern tribe lands, with the intent of replacing their psychadelic drug culture with the usage of performance increasing drugs. This has worked well during the orclympics, and many of the winners were secretly drug users, and gained control of the new territories north of the Gad river. The orcs have caught wind of this eventually, and are on the look out. Still, the Shamir peddle their wares in the name of freedom.

Not only the Shamir peddle performance enhancing drugs: there is a rival carter of ex-Koon resistance members and spies, who managed to slip through the cracks, aided in secret by the half-men alchemists. They also makes sure the scattered koonite civilians keep an interest in gladiator combats, and keep sharp, just in case the great leaders of madness return from down, down below, from the blood red caves...

Oh, and the result of the Orclympics:

Assortment of less popular sports:
  • Gold : Windrose
  • Silver: Rotpah
  • Bronze: Shamir
Atheletic performance:
  • Gold: Tribes
  • Silver: Bastion
  • Bronze: The Herder Orc Clans
Wrestleball tournament:
  • Gold: Bastion
  • Silver: Tribes
  • Bronze: Knocnoriens
Obstacle course in really stupid costumes:
  • Gold: Shamir
  • Silver: Windrose
  • Bronze: Tuvarii
Safe-ish Gladiatorial Combat:
  • Gold: Knocnoriens
  • Silver: Independent Athletes Formely From Koon
  • Bronze: The Herder Orc Clans
The person who won the bronze in Obstacle Course In Really Stupid Costumes? Micans.

And thus ends the second era.

200 years pass...

If you want to sign up for the next era, select three words from the list below, and post it in thread:

slave horoscope half creator ghoul discovery
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ghoul, half, slave

e: horoscope, ghoul, half
[Image: jt0Cf7522wX9Gp-rLZuSVuS9drxEdxC7ZldowSZy...640-h80-no]
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I vote Ghoul, Half, Discovery
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Half, Horoscope, ghoul
"Don't get me started on Henchmen."
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Half, Creator, Discovery
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