I have difficulty believing that the humans would be able to simultaneously eject all the other races, but I understand this is critical to rest of the history and the nature of Atheus. It is internally consistent, which I like, but it seems to depend upon an unlikely event.
The same goes for keeping the barbarian races at bay. I would expect a horde of hungry and angry barbarians to be able to overwhelm the civilized lands. European history has more than a few instances of barbarians banding together with even less motivation to accomplish such a thing. (Then again, Caesar was able to conquer Gaul by pitting the tribes against each other, so I could be wrong.)
Having said all that, I see many possibilities in the way Atheus is set up. Lots of potential for conflict. I can't say I'm a big fan of the humans, especially the ones on the border. That kind of blatant segregation does not sit well with me. I'd probably want to play on the barbarian side, maybe as a troublemaking chieftain looking to unite with others and teach the humans a thing or two :)Go to Comment
I wish I'd read this one first before some of the other Atheus-related subs. This gives me a better sense of things.
Giving this a 3.5/5, but only because it's light on details. Hopefully many of those details will be filled out in other subs. (I always struggle with figuring out how much to put in one sub and when to split it out into others, knowing I risk a lower score on the individual ones when I do.)
Looking forward to reading more, including catching up on the history.
My first thought while reading this: Damn, I wish I had the video game. My second: If I keep reading I will already know what happens and I can never be the player who gets to explore this place. My third: Screw it, I need to know what's happening.
I was not disappointed.
I wish I had more to add to the discussion but the other comments have all said what I wanted to and more. I too would love to see a bestiary; when is this happening? ;)
Your descriptions are great and the concepts excellent. Your mind must be a twisted place!