For a time, everything had flourished in the new age; the Age of Unity, the elders had named it. The great kingdom of the Pyran Arc had been growing and expanding more than ever before, forming alliances and treaties with the Dwarves of Bross and the Valley Elves. The three nations exchanged resources, knowledge, and ale, forming a bond that strengthened rather quickly, but the Pyrans did not stop the spread of their influence there. They had reached even further, to the southeast, where the seemingly eternal war between the three great Jungle Tribes had raged throughout the Islands of the Emerald Tide since the beginning of time. The Pyrans had offered sanctuary, constructing the sprawling Jade Harbor, a safe haven where no blood was to be shed between the tribes, where they could trade and negotiate rather than rape and slaughter. The Pyran Arc had even begun work on the foundations of a pact with the reclusive Wood Elves, who had always been so cautious to other nations, save for their Valley brethren. It had seemed that the Pyran Arc was doing the work of the gods, uniting the lands, building the foundations of the so-called Age of Unity.
And then, as if from the depths of nightmare itself, came the Blackmass. From the largely uncharted swamps of the far east, their demons had emerged, twisted beasts that had once existed only in myth and fable. With them came a festering plague that rotted the very land as they began their slow creep westward, consuming the whole of the Swamplands (which by then had been appropriately named the Forsaken Coast). The bulk of their power had stormed the Barrier Woods, taking the Wood Elves by surprise and shattering their defenses. Before any of the western nations had time to react, the very heart of the Wood Elf civilization had been corrupted, and they had been enslaved by the Blackmass, becoming soulless husks of their former selves; the Dark Elves.
Rumors began to spread that the Orcs of Parch had already joined forces with the wretched Blackmass and their Elvish minions, despite the fact that they had always been hostile to anything that had set foot in their wasteland prior to the invasion; including the former Wood Elves, and the Pyran Arc. Some said that the Blackmass had a demonic influence that appealed to the savage hearts of the Orcs, much like the Pyrans had appealed to the righteous hearts of the Dwarves and Valley Elves. The armies of the west had massed in defense of their lands, the forefront of the coming war falling directly on the border of Hazel Valley and the Barrier Woods. Thousands upon thousands of men, Elves, and Dwarves had waited there in anticipation of their first battle against an enemy they had never seen, never thought could exist.
And when their forces crashed upon each other, the earth itself trembled.
Welcome to the OOC for A Realm Divided, an open-world RPG I've been working on for quite some time now. In this RP, you can be pretty much anyone; a knight of the Pyran Arc, a wandering mercenary from the Freelands of the south, a fiend of the Blackmass, just about anything. You can choose to adventure with other players or alone, fight for the forces of good or evil (or gold), master the sword and shield or the dark art of necromancy.
The two main aspects of your character in this RP will be your faction and your class. Your faction will determine what region of the world your character starts in, and who your allies and enemies are (though you can always change that later). It is worth noting that being part of a faction does NOT mean that you have to be a part of that faction's army. If you are a Pyran, for example, you can be a rogue living in the capital city. There are eight main factions, each with their own region:
The Pyran Arc (Human) - The Pyran Arc is a vast, proud, and powerful kingdom located in the great hills of Westcliffe. Their capital is Pyrus, a massive, bustling city strategically built upon a tall cliff that commands the wide plain below. They are the heart of the western alliance, and form the bulk of the infantry. Pyrans are known for making well-disciplined soldiers, but also have a significant population of magic-users.
The Valley Elves - Once a very passive people, the Valley Elves reside in the lowlands of Hazel Valley, sprawling out between the Barrier Woods and Westcliffe. Their capital is Verdavale, a lush sanctuary well-protected by its natural surroundings. The culture of the Valley Elves revolves around hunting and gathering, and so they make excellent rogues and archers. Their bloodline also contains very potent ancient magic, resulting in some of the most powerful spellcasters being Elvish.
The Dwarves - Strong and thick-skinned, the Dwarves make their home in the frigid Mountains of Bross, a long mountain range that covers most of the north end of the realm. Their capital is Mollor, the Gods' Keep, a stone city that is said to be as old as the mountains themselves. The rough environment has made the Dwarves very durable, and they've refined and perfected the practice of mining and smithing over thousands of years. Because of this, their soldiers are notorious for being extremely lethal and hard to kill. Magic is scarce in Dwarves (the elders say it cannot flow through their blood because the north has frozen it), but there are still some practitioners.
The Dark Elves - Driven mad and enslaved by the evil of the Blackmass, the Dark Elves (formerly Wood Elves) stalk the eastern Barrier Woods, an immense forest of thick, towering trees. Their capital is Sundravale, a once-beautiful city hidden within a forest labyrinth, now scarred by the plague of the Blackmass. The Dark Elves, much like the Valley Elves, are cunning and swift, and their newly developed killer instinct makes them unnaturally talented at hand-to-hand combat and assassination. They have also retained most of their magical prowess, and are particularly proficient with black magic.
The Orcs - Hostile and cruel, much like their wasteland home of Parch, the Orcs have never been known to have an interest in diplomacy; the only solution they've ever seen is through blood and iron. Their capital is Mag'zul, otherwise known as the Molten Citadel, a heavily fortified city built around a towering volcano. With their own unique, brutal discipline and metals forged from the fires of the volcano itself, the Orcs are practically bred for combat, making them fearsome opponents in battle. There are also various cults of Orcs who practice magic and believe that they draw their power from the volcano.
The Blackmass - A teeming horde of wicked demons conjured up by the nine Forgotten Ones, the Blackmass has taken control of the eastern swamplands, now known as the Forsaken Coast. Their capital, Void's Eye, is little more than single towering castle erected at the heart of the swamp from which the Forgotten Ones command their army. The Blackmass come in many different forms, sizes, and strengths. As a Blackmass, carrying out tasks for your masters and slaying enemies will gradually empower you, improving your physical structure to make you even more lethal. Note that Blackmass do not have a class, but gain abilities based on their evolution.
The Jungle Tribes (Human) - Off the southern coast of Parch, in the scattered Islands of the Emerald Tide, the three Jungle Tribes can be found; the Fanged Men, the Stormseers, and the Saltbloods. The Fanged Men are known as skilled hunters, famed for their ability to tame the wild beasts of the Isles as their companions. The Stormseers are the only tribe to possess magical blood, and prefer to use magic where the other tribes use weapons. The Saltbloods were the first tribe to create boats to sail between the Isles, and have since then become by far the most proficient, preferring to attack from the water. The three Tribes have been locked in a blood feud since they were formed countless years ago, and battle constantly for conquest of the Isles; except for when they are in their capital, Jade Harbor, where Pyran peacekeepers ensure that no fighting takes place.
The Guilds - Goldenmarch (more commonly known as the Freelands), the exotic desert region south of Westcliffe, is home to the most diverse population of beings in the realm. The Freelands are a neutral zone where many go to build new lives away from the other nations of the world; anyone from refugees to wanted criminals to merchant lords. It is not owned by any single organization, but is rather watched over by the many powerful Guilds that can be found in the capital city of Bazaar, a city that is said to have begun as nothing more than a trading post. These Guilds vary in purpose, from merchants to mercenaries, but all participate in an elaborate, well-hidden struggle for control of Bazaar and its riches. As a player, you may invent your own Guild, but you will start in the lower ranks and have to work your way up by proving your loyalty (see self-made faction rules below).
Note: You do not have to be a part of one of these factions. You can choose to be unaffiliated (as a mercenary or simply a wandering adventurer), or create a smaller faction, like a bandit clan, that you can be a part of. If you wish to create your own faction, send me a message first and let me verify your idea before you put it on your character sheet.
There are also nine base classes to choose from, that will determine your character's capabilities in combat. You will start at level 1 with only basic skills, but as you level up you will develop more powerful talents. The abilities you earn at each level are NOT meant to limit what your character can do, but they should be used as a guideline to show how powerful you are. Attempting actions that are beyond your character's abilities will result in you becoming exhausted much more quickly and likely putting you in greater danger than before. At level 5, your character will be able to multiclass, combining your current base class with another one to create a specialized class. Specialized classes have more intricate abilities than base classes, and are more powerful. At level 10, you can multiclass again, adding a third base class to create a master class. Master classes are the strongest of all, and will have a very significant impact on the outcome of the RP. The nine base classes are:
Warrior - Strong and disciplined combatants, Warriors strive to find precision and balance in the art of battle. They combine force with speed, offense with defense, accuracy with momentum. As a result, through rigorous training, Warriors are very skilled in all areas of combat. They tend to prefer the standard sword and shield combination, but can wield a variety of other weapons as well.
Rogue - Quick, clever, and not afraid to fight dirty, Rogues are known for having deadly skill with a blade and for using any means necessary to win a fight. With their versatile combat style and ability to identify and exploit weaknesses, Rogues make for very difficult opponents in a one-on-one battle. Focusing on agility and speed rather than raw strength, they keep their reflexes as sharp as their knives, dodging and deflecting each blow their enemy throws, then punishing it with their own swift attacks.
Barbarian - Reckless and overwhelmingly powerful, Barbarians ignore all aspects of combat except for brute force. They prefer large two-handed weapons to bash and hack their enemies to death, and often choose to enter combat with little to no armor; it only weighs them down. Due to the intensity of their combat style, Barbarians are often in peak physical condition, granting them incredible stamina and endurance.
Archer - Archers prefer to fight from long distance, taking out enemies before they even get within striking distance with their lethal arrows. A combination of level-headedness and uncanny accuracy is necessary to become an effective Archer, but when it is achieved, it becomes incredibly difficult for opponents to so much as touch them. In case of emergencies, Archers often carry knives and other small weapons to defend themselves at close range.
Druid - Blessed with the magic of nature itself, Druids tap into the earth to draw their power. They can manifest this power in a variety of ways, such as manipulating their environment, conjuring bolts of natural energy, or even as healing magic. Druids have an inherent bond with all living things, and often channel their power through other animals that can fight for them.
Mage - Possessing the most pure form of magic, Mages are most famous for their conjuration abilities. Their control of the elements allows them to use the powers of fire and ice in combat, as well as other arcane types of energy. Experienced Mages can eventually expand their powers beyond pure energy, and into such areas as telekinesis and portal creation.
Priest - Priests call upon the power of the heavens, also known as the Light, to give them their magic. Light magic is most frequently used for healing, but Priests can also use it to smite their enemies. As Priests develop their abilities and gain favor with the Light, they become able to bless their allies with it, empowering them in various ways or shielding them from harm altogether.
Summoner - With their spiritual link to the souls of distant realms, Summoners are able to channel their magic to create physical forms to protect them and eliminate their enemies. More experienced Summoners have stronger spiritual bonds and can reach out to farther realms, allowing them to summon more powerful beings. Summoners also have magic that can be drawn from their own spirits, which can be used to empower their guardians or blast their opponents.
Shadowmancer - Practicians of the black magic that is shunned in many parts of the realm, Shadowmancers have formed a dangerous pact with the same demonic force that was used to create the Blackmass. This magic manifests itself in different forms, mainly as pure dark energy that can inflict immense pain. It is also commonly used to curse opponents with debilitating diseases, and to drain life force from those who are too weak to resist. Because of the volatile effect that black magic has on its practitioners, Shadowmancers are generally feared and are not treated kindly in most regions.
If you have any questions about the class system, send me a message and I'll do my best to clear things up.
Character Sheets should look something like this:
Class: (Leave blank if your Faction is Blackmass.)
I haven't decided how many characters I'll accept yet, but I was thinking somewhere around six. Good luck!