The bmokkar, also called the "water-worm", is a very large swamp or marsh-dwelling predator, which dwells in large, deep wetlands in hot climes. A formidable creature, the bmokkar is a mostly-aquatic creature, and is rarely seen except by the most deep-roving of swamp-dwelling clans and tribes; it is a ferocious enigma that an overburdened clan-ma or fed-up father of a marsh-tribe will use as a bogeyman, scaring young clan-kids out of the dark reaches of the untamed fens.
Though it is common for bestiaries to refer to the bmokkar as a "worm", a more accurate analogy would be to call it a great water-bound centipede. The creature is usually 7 to 10 feet long, but can be as short as 5 and as long as 20 feet, depending on the expanse and depth of its swamp habitat. The body is wide and semi-flattened in shape (similar to a squashed cylinder); it is segmented, and each segment has a set of four legs (one pair on each side of the body). The body ends in a "tail" segment with a wide, flat fin like that of a dolphin. The whole body resembles that of a great insect or centipede, and it's segments are composed of hard plates like those of a bug. However, rather than chitin, the bmokkar's hide is composed of an incredibly thick, tough flesh, leathery and rubbery to the touch, and as hard as the shiny armor of its landborne cousins.
The fearsome aspect of the bmokkar, however, lies in its terrifying mouthparts. The creature's eyeless head possesses most notably a huge set of razored scimitar-like outer mandibles, easily large enough to cut a man in half. Within these great blades, there are four sets of dual fangs, ringing a circular gullet; this gullet is filled with grinding plates of rough chitin and shifting shard-teeth of hard plate. If that were not enough, beyond this smashing terror, the throat is lined with cruel hard thorns. Surrounding this entire mouth, there is a great mass of hairlike tentacles. These tentacles are coated in a paralytic agent which numbs on contact- the bmokkar uses these tentacles to render its prey or target motionless and then drag the helpless meat into the slicing, mashing, grinding horror of its maw.
The bmokkar typically spends most of its time in the muddy, lightless depths, capturing other strange marsh beasts as they come to the edges of deep swamp pools to drink, or as they wade through the edges between shallows and deeper lakes. Occasionally, a water-worm will be seen to cruise along or just-below the surface like a crocodile or shark; even more rarely the creatures may sometimes be seen shooting and leaping for hard-to-catch prey, breaching the surface like insane insectile dragons from hell and then flopping awkwardly back into the murky currents.
Bmokkar are not intelligent; in fact, they are nearly mindless. They seek to consume nearly anything that will fall into their jaws, and never congregate in social groups except during the breeding season, when the surfaces of some of the darker lakes and pools in the marshes can be seen thrashing with a strange and gelatinous mass of orgying water-worms.
It is still disputed by sages whether or not the bmokkar is related to the very similar armored monster of the oceans known as the dhenrabi, which is also a blind, armored, centipedal creature with great jaws.
The bmokkar is never found outside of the hotter climes of the world, and only rarely do they stray beyond murky marsh waters. Water-worms found to have become lost and slipped into streams or clear rivers are invariably wounded or confused individuals which soon die. Go to Comment
Yeah, I wasn't doing so well at the beginning there.
I do, however, contest the statement that I'm one of the best- I actually contribute very little and what I do seems rather mediocre to me. Go to Comment
Before this world, there have been seven other worlds, and the gods destroyed them all. The first world was the world of emptiness, where the quiet things lived without help of the spirits. That world ended in fire. The second world was the world of Ixchalancha. It was home to white, scale-less giants with the faces of frogs who worshipped a blind babbler. That world ended in a great earthquake that swallowed up the giants and their god. The third world was the world of great marshes. The forests and jungles and swamps went on forever. In this world, the spirits of earth and wood and water made the Quetzalx, and gave them the swamps. But this world, like all other worlds, was doomed to end. This world ended in a rain of stones. The spirits took pity on the Quetzalx and carried them to the fourth world, the world of stones. This world was all mountains, and the Quetzalx suffered terribly, for there were no trees or swamps or water for them. The spirits of the stones led the tribes across the world of stones for four-hundred years to where the Boat of Tlaxi waited for them. The world of stones ended in a great war where the spirits of the stones slaughtered all the stone-monsters. The Quetzalx rode the Boat of Tlaxi to the fifth world, the world of Tlencan. In this world, the tribes of the Quetzalx followed the spirit Tlaxi across the great plains of bones and fought against ten tribes of monsters called the Tlencani. Tlaxi helped the Quetzalx slay the Inti of all the Tlencan, who was blessed by the spirits of death, by tying him down and cutting out his orange tounge. Then, the Quetzalx chopped him to bits with their atlatls and axes, and stomped on him until he was dust. That world ended in a great storm. The sixth world was the world of sand, and Tlaxi had to take away the arms and legs of the Quetzalx so that they could crawl across the sands. When the tribes came to the end of the world of sand, he gave back the arms and legs. But one tribe refused their arms and legs and became snakes. This is why snakes are cursed by Tlaxi. That world ended in a great flood. The seventh world was the world of water, and Tlaxi got the spirits of water to help him by turning the Quetzalx into fish so that they could swim in the world of water, which was all water and nothing else. When the Water-Sun came out and started to dry up the world of water, Tlaxi turned the Quetzalx into frogs, newts, and axolotls so that they could both swim and walk. When it came time to become upright again, one tribe stayed as fish and one as frogs, newts, and axolotls. These things are not cursed by Tlaxi, because they are closer to his heart. The eighth world is now, the world of Zlatan. The Great World Pond is what is left of the World of Water. The hairy ones rule this world, but the Quetzalx will rule in the end, before Tlaxi ends this world. This world will end in a great hurricane.
Blind babbler: In Lizardfolk mythology, a kind of demon or evil spirit.
Quetzalx: Lizardfolk name for themselves.
Tlaxi: Lizardfolk hero/deity
Inti: Literally "Sun". Used to mean leader or king.
Water-Sun: A name for one of the "forms" of the Lizardfolk sun god, Chotec. Go to Comment
Why Chotec Crosses the Sky, as told by Montuzipec Runs-On-Water, Inti of the Huapec Tribe.
Chotec, Lord of the Sun, sat in his great House in the Sky and sighed. Tlaxi approached him and said "Chotec, why do you sigh? You are well. Your wives are beautiful and your eggs are plenty. Your scales shine like gold. You are wealthy beyond all others. What troubles you?" Chotec sighed again and rattled his spear, saying "I have all of those things, but I lack something else." Tlaxi extended his frills and scratched Chotec with his claws. "You are being foolish." he said. "I will take you out into the world and show you that you lack nothing." So Chotec and Tlaxi walked out into the world and walked for six days, coming to Itza, the oldest and greatest city of the Quetzalx. Old One, the lord of Itza, came out of the city with a guard of jade armored warriors with splendid weapons. In his voice that rattles the Nine Heavens and the Nine Underworlds, Old One said "Great Gods Chotec and Tlaxi, we are honored to have you in our city." Chotec and Tlaxi stayed for six days and six nights in Itza, sampling all it had to offer. Chotec said "There is nothing here that I do not have. We must go on." So Chotec and Tlaxi walked on and left Itza far behind. Soon, they came to the Great Wakamol Crater, where all the waters of every swamp pour into the Nine Underworlds. The tribes of Quetzalx who lived on the edge of the crater came to Chotec and Tlaxi, and their leaders, Tzunki-Scales-Of-Fire and Skink-Sleeps-In-Moonlight, came to the two gods with a regiment of bronze armored warriors with atlatls of brass and said "Great Gods Chotec and Tlaxi, welcome to our home." Chotec and Tlaxi stayed for ten days and ten nights with the wealthy and powerful tribes of the Wakamol Crater, sampling all of the joys and wealth of these tribes. Chotec said "I still cannot find what I am looking for. We must go on." Soon, Chotec and Tlaxi had left the Wakamol Crater behind, crossed over the Plains of Culchan, fought through the demon-city of Xocibiki and entered the great Desert of Pahuanctli. The tribes of the Desert came to Chotec and Tlaxi with their leaders, Pahuanctlaxi-Of-Sands, Xotloctli-Has-Never-Swam and Only-He-Has-Leapt-So-High. They said to the gods "Welcome to our desert. We would give you everything, but we cannot spare anything, for we have nothing, due to Chotec's fiery heat." When Chotec heard this, he roared and croaked and rattled his golden scales and said to Tlaxi "This is what I lack! Charity!" So Chotec and Tlaxi returned to the Great House in the Sky and gathered together supplies for Chotec. Chotec then set out on an endless journey across the sky so that he could warm the lands for the Quetzalx just right during the day, and rest and partake of his wealth during the night. This is why Chotec crosses the sky.
"You are wealthy beyond all others": To lizardfolk, the term "wealth" means possessions of food, servants, and, to a lesser extent, jade and gold.
Nine Heavens and Nine Underworlds: In lizardfolk mythology, Heaven and the Underworld each have nine layers.
Wakamol Crater: In lizardfolk mythology, a giant hole in the ground where all water eventually flows into the Underworld to escape the heat of Chotec.
Plains of Chulcan: In lizardfolk mythology, a near-endless grassland full of monsters and elven warriors.
Xocibiki: In lizardfolk mythology, a ruined city of demons and evil spirits.
Desert of Pahuanctli: In lizardfolk mythology, the desert that exists where Chotec first started drying up the ocean (see creation myth) Go to Comment
How Tlaxi Gave Us The Olchilike, as told by Xoctezuma, Inti of the Chaxayun Tribe
When the Quetzalx first entered the current world, they were lost and and could not find Xom or Xop or Cha or Txal, for they had lived too long in the world of water as fishes and frogs and newts and axolotls. The tribes wandered in the dry rocks, searching for a swamp or a forest where they could sit and swim without the awful of bite of salt. Tlaxi looked at the Quetzalx, and saw that the rocks and the salt and the hot shining of Chotec had made painful sores on their feet. So Tlaxi took his warclub and struck the stones, breaking it so that the waters of the Great World Pond flowed in. Then, Tlaxi swam down to the bottom of the World Pond and brought up some mud to make the world with. Then, Tlaxi threw the mud all over the world, and called out to the spirits of water and wood to make the land for the Quetzalx. For ten spawnings, the Quetzalx lived in the land alone, until Xipe-Totectli, god of the low-growing things and grasses, grew angry, seeing that the Quetzalx used his plants only for medicines and decoration. So Xipe-Totectli reached into the Nine Underworlds and pulled out an evil seed to plant in the ground, which he watered with the salty waters of the World Pond. In two spawnings, the evil seed grew up into a demon-tree, and it's fruit was the hairy things. The hairy things battled the Quetzalx and slew them horribly, and worshipped demons and bad gods, and treated the land and the spirits with disdain, raping it for their growing plants and their wood houses. Tlaxi, seeing that the hairy things were destroying the Quetzalx, his chosen people, went to Xipe-Totectli and struck him with his warclub and raised his frills, shouting "Why have you done this thing? You make the world shed tears!" Xipe-Totectli wept and vowed never to see the world again, sealing himself in a cave. Tlaxi went down to the Quetzalx, and taught them to call the spirits of earth and wood and air and fire. He then showed the spirits how to ride the Quetzalx, sharing their power with them. He told the Quetzalx that only special ones could be ridden by the spirits, and he called these special ones Olchilike. The Olchilike went out and defeated the hairy things with their spirit powers, and forevermore, the hairy things fear the Quetzalx and trouble them little. As for Xipe-Totectli, he eventually came out, his belly starved with hunger, and while he was gone, the low-growing things and grasses died. Tlaxi told him that he had to return to his cave every spawning as punishment to him and his hairy things. That is why the Xom and Xop lands have a cold time.
Xom or Xop or Cha or Txa: North or South or East or West
Without the awful bite of salt: Salt is highly unpleasant to the metabolisms of Lizardfolk, and, in large quantities, even harmful.
Great World Pond: The seas and oceans
Ten spawnings: Ten years. Each year, the Lizardfolk spawn a new nest of eggs.
Olchilike: The Olchilike are the holy god-warriors of the Lizardfolk. Very few have ever existed. They are "ridden" by spirits, and thus, have fantastic powers of combat. Olchilike is the plural form of Olchilik.
Gonna' try my own hand at a little semisetting using Moon's worksheet.
(XX) Sift and sort
(XX) Top down process (XX)(__)(__)
(XX) Bottom up (XX)(__)(__)
This world was inspired by a long time of playing Phantasy Star Online. The language I'm using is an actual language, Etruscan, to which I have a small lexicon in a history book on them that I recently got.
I have no intention of fleshing this out, so if anybody wants to take this and make it their own, fine by me.
Themes and Images:
There are two super-advanced cultures in this world, and all the other people are basically late Stone Age to middle Bronze Age. The two cultures are the Spurethi and Tmial; they are the declining, hedonistic descendants of a human colony-ship that crashed on Tyrrhen thousands of years ago. The barbarians around Spurethi (from the Etruscan word "spur" meaning "city") and Tmial (from the Etruscan word "tmia", meaning "temple") are also human, but they are not from the colony-ship. They were present at the crash.
The Universe this takes place in is not ours, but it is certainly not a total fantasy. There are gods, the Ausar, extradimensional psychic beings who the Spurethi and Tmial worship; the leader of these gods is Tin, the Lord of the Arch of Heaven, and his husband/wife is Ausel, the Sun. The barbarians worship members of a shapeshifting alien race called the Thersu. Various Thersu factions war over the control of the barbarians, hence, the different barbarian pantheons and cultures. I do not assert that the Traveling People's ship was necessarily a "star"ship as we would know it. Their universe may be different altogether from ours.
The barbarians utilize "magic" (psychic abilities that the Thersu have infused in them); the Traveling People (the Spurethi and Tmial) utilize their light-based photon technology. They can freeze energy and light to build things out of. They recieved much of their technology from the Ausar before the Crash.
Semi-Earth. It has been somewhat terraformed by the Traveling People to match their own planet, so in the regions of their empires it is a planet of lush purplish-jungle similar to Earth. But in the nonterraformed areas, it is vast forests of neon-glowing fungus. The oceans are the same, though the sealife is more protoplasmic and jellyfish-like. The Traveling People jungles are populated by Earth-like animals (though not exactly Earth's); the alien zones of the barbarians are populated by massive armored slugs, masses of tentacles, land-jellyfish, and other strange alien animals.
There are two huge continents (now called Spurethi and Tmial), connected by a chain of islands and a narrow bridge of land called the Path of War (due to the many battles fought between Spurethi and Tmial on it). There are two or three additional smaller continents. The interior areas of Spurethi and Tmial are Traveler-jungle (Purple jungle, Earth-like animals), but all other regions are indigenous fungus-forests. There are two major deserts on the Tmial continent and one of its satellite landmasses. Much of the land is threaded with rivers. The world is a very volcanically-active one.
In Traveler jungles- Plants much like those of Earth's tropical rainforests, though it is purple rather than green, and grows to much larger sizes than we would be used to. Much of the jungle contains the ruins of old Traveler settlements, such as power gates, energy walls, old outposts, and ancient light-trams.
Animals are Earth-like but subtly different- there are saber-toothed cats with red fur and black stripes, green-furred monkeys that howl, brilliantly-colored birds, very large insects (mostly the centipede and caterpillar-like bugs), deer with huge curving horns instead of antlers.
In the indigenous fungus-forest- Bizarre forests of fungus. The trees are huge pillars of fungus, bridged by giant ruffled fans of the stuff; there is fungus in every form imaginable here. The underbrush is smaller fungus.
Animals are bizarre. There are huge, silicon-armored slugs, land-based jellyfish-like "slurpers", and six-legged animals of all sorts; most of the animals have armor of one sort or another.
-Clickers: These are the indigenous version of wolves. They have six legs in a splayed shape around them, all connecting to a central, anvil-shaped pod/head/body.
-Screechers: Six-legged furry animals who eat by osmosis. They are large and fat, and some barbarians use them like cattle.
Earth-like metals. Lots and lots of iron and lots and lots of silver, but very little gold.
In Traveler forests- Earth-like standard.
In fungus-forests- lots of fungus can be used as food, or is poisonous. When a certain species of fungus dies, it crystallizes and crumbles into a metallic sand.
Races and Peoples:
There are two basic races of humans on this world:
The Traveler People- These are the descendants of the humans who crashed here with their colony-ship in the ancient past. They speak the Traveler Tongue (If I were fleshing this out, I would use Etruscan). There are two Traveler ethnicities- the Spurethi and the Tmial. The Traveler People are superadvanced, and use technology based on solid light and frozen energy. They worship the Ausar (extradimensional psychic beings with near-limitless psychic power).
The Barbarians are a variety of ethnicities and cultures, ranging from Stone Age to Bronze Age technology. They did not arrive with the Traveler People, they were on Tyrrhen before; it is one of the great mysteries of the world. There are as many different Barbarian cultures as the GM may wish. They worship the Thersu, shapeshifters who pretend to be their gods.
There is one non-human race on Tyrrhen (though the Ausar are technically everywhere at once, but we won't go into that), and that race is the Thersu (Thersu is the Traveler Peoples' name for them; Thersu is Etruscan for "mask" or "masked person"). The Thersu are a shapeshifting alien race, who, like the Traveler People, are not aboriginal to Tyrrhen. They claim to have come thousands of years previously through something they call the Great Door. Thersu are colony organisms made up of thousands of tiny bubbles of fluid substance. They can rearrange themselves in practically any shape imaginable, and they can change their color and texture, et cetera. They can give themselves the appearance of greater or lesser mass, by swelling their bubbles outward or discarding some.
The Spurethi and the Tmial are individual semi-republics. There are no real laws in Traveler culture, only suggestions, and even these are losing their power. Their cultures are falling into decadence and hedonism as they lose their drive. This is the last stage of losing hope- most Traveler People now believe that the rescue ship that their ancestors watched for will never come.
The Barbarians dwell in hundreds of different ways, but most are monarchies or tribes.
There are 325 days in a Tyrrhenian year. There are no months as we see them in the Traveler calendar. Instead, each week of five days is marked with the name of one of the original 65 Traveler families. All Traveler People know these weeks by heart.
Spurethi and Tmial nations, and the Barbarian lands.
The Red Phylum- these Thersu advocate the extermination of humans.
The Blue Phylum- these Thersu advocate ignoring humans.
The Phylum of Humans- this small group advocates helping humans.
There are hundreds of thousands of Thersu factions, this is just a sample.
The Ausar Priesthood- The Ausar temples in Traveler cities are not staffed by human priests. Instead, the Ausar utilize Snenath (Etruscan "maidservant, female companion"), energy beings from the Ausar dimension who take the form of beautiful women. The Ausar manipulate the politics of the Travelers, war against the Thersu, and basically influence our dimension through the Snenath.
The Warrior-Travelers- The Warrior-Travelers are those of the Traveler People who have turned their backs on the hedonistic, fatalistic Travelers and gone out into the wilderness. Some seek to help barbarians gain technology. Others attempt to destroy the Traveler nations. Others look for lost Traveler or Ausar technology so that they can signal a rescue ship.
Laws and Morals:
Pretty much like our laws, but they are not actively policed anymore in Traveler cities. Crime is high, and the motivation to stop it is very low- the Travelers have pretty much lost hope of doing anything and fallen into a hedonistic swoon. The only people doing anything about policing or good deeds are the Warrior Travelers.
Traveler families don't exist. The children are raised by the Parent Machines, and are turned loose at the age of 14.
Barbarians have all different sorts of family types.
The Travelers have a supposedly democratic society, but in actuality, most keep barbarian slaves.
The leaders of the Travelers are the Politicians and the Directors (presidents). These form a pseudo-aristocracy. Below them are everybody else, except for slaves. There are various sub-classes based on economic status.
In the Traveler nations, political power is in the hands of the Directors and the Politicians. The Ausar Priesthood also has considerable power.
In Barbarian lands, who knows where?
(Don't know what to say)
Religion: The Travelers worship the Ausar (Etruscan for "gods"), extradimensional psychic beings. Travelers strike a strange balance between science and technology- most scientists are also devout worshippers. Temples are usually at the bases of the supercomputers that administrate cities.
The Ausar are-
Tin- Lord of the Arch of Heaven, Master of the Stars, Creator of the Sky
Uni- The Queen of Heaven, Mother of the Universe
Menerva- Creatrix of Civilization, Weaver, the Artist
Sethlans- The Ausar of the Forge, Toolmaker, the Innovator
Turms- The Quick One, Lord of Speech and Thought, Carrier of Messages
Turan- The Lady, the Lady of Beauty, the Lover
Maris- The Bloody-Handed One, The Lord of War, the Firer of Beams
A sample of Thersu "gods" worshipped by barbarians (Note, most names are Thersu names corrupted by barbarian renderings)-
YaarBaalaag (original Thersu name)- the Leech God, the Firebreather, the Invincible One
Gilyish- the Lord of Thunder, the Lightning Thrower
Micz-Fahtagh- the Lady of Passion, the Giver of Ecstasy
HaacsPaar (original Thersu name)- the Brilliant, the Giver of Gifts
Gul'tac'gun'tal- The Roarer, the Defeater, the Night Strangler
Vaax (original Thersu name)- The Darkness in the House
Technology and Common Power:
Travelers are advanced in all respects, save communications, wherein they are strangely defficient. They use inefficient, power-sucking photon transfers for messaging. Their weapons use frozen energy for melee weapons and Masers for projectile weapons.
The Barbarians are Stone-to-Bronze Age level technology.
Probably special days for every Ausar.
Mysteriously, almost all of the old Traveler light-rails and air-cars ceased to function several hundred years ago. Therefore, most travel is done by walking. Some light-rails still function, and a few of the transfer-gates that teleport, but for the most part, Travelers must make due with walking or carts. They have experimented with ground cars, but such cars require roads, and most Travelers are too lazy to put that much effort into traveling. Some don't even travel at all.
Traveler art is mostly light-sculptures and light-patterns. Their literature is a lot of gloomy poems and Bacchanal songs.
There are always the Thersu lurking about, plotting and such. In addition, there are the Eiser, second group of "gods" similar to the Ausar, who have thus far proved hostile to humanity.
The Traveler society is crumbling. There is a ton of crime.
Many barbarians have psychic powers which they call "magic", given to them by Thersu manipulation.
Nothing we would deem supernatural, per se, though in the case of the Ausar, this is debatable.
(Distant distant past) Thersu arrive on Tyrrhen.
(Distant past) Traveler Peoples' planet/world/plane/whatever is destroyed. Colony ships are sent out.
Traveler People crash on Tyrrhen.
Argument between the families on the ship. Half go east, half go west.
East goers form Spurethi. West goers form Tmial. Barbarians first encountered.
War between Traveler nations.
(many years pass)
Most travel technology ceases to function.
Players can be barbarians or Warrior-Travelers.
Traveler Tech breaks down over time, and breaks down faster the farther one goes from the Traveler cities. Go to Comment