What happen's when a fantasy world, that for millennia has seen almost no magic, but it suddenly and violently returns? War, plague, death, destruction; the very bowels of Hell rise up in legions bent upon the destruction of all that is pure and good in the world, cultists find that they suddenly actually have power, the very sky bleeds fire.
Nations of Men
Eternal Fallen Imperium
The Imperium had stood for a full 3 centuries before the return of magic. Though not the first great continent spanning empire, it was quite possibly both the largest, in terms of both landmass and population, and the longest lasting, at least if you don't believe the children's stories of the Great Empire that lasted for a thousand years, in the era of the gods, though seeing the proofs of what many scoffed at as myth a mere 20 years ago, one would be a fool to totally disregard any myth now. Now the Imperium lands are a scattering of what amounts to city-states, locked up safely behind their walls while the surrounding country-sides are over-run by all sorts of foulness.
Formerly the faltering kingdom of Givarna, the Sanctum is now the only surviving human kingdom, as long as you dismiss the petty tyrants that set themselves up as kings and gave themselves ridiculous titles like, King Hytherian the First, Lord of the Grey Crossing, Saviour of the People, Slayer of Demons, ect, ect. Having been involved in a long drawn out war with the Imperium, that they'd been slowly losing, though not without making the Legions pay for every d**ned inch with their blood. This had, perversely, allow them to survive the initial onslaughts of the Hordes when Hell first broke loose, and at the same time spelled destruction for the Imperium, due to more than half of their legions, and almost all of their veterans being pinned down in the passes leading to the Girvarna.
-The Holy Dominion on Earth
Composed of the largest single chunk of the former Imperium, the Dominion is lorded over by The Prophet, with a capital The. A mere scribe in the Time Before, he received visions in the years leading up to the apocalypse, and gathered a devoted following, whom he lead into the wilderness a mere month before the Sundering. Now he's the supreme ruler of a horde of religious fanatics that are armed to the teeth and filled with divine fire, ready to cleanse the world of the Impure who brought it to this point.
-The Secret (or not so...) Societies
They're everywhere, some of them are down right villainous, devoted to opening the Gates further, allowing their dark masters to come through, others are more of an open secret, like the thieve's guild, no one talks about it, but its members can meet in public without fear of being lynched.
Barbarians, inhabiting the far edges of the world, where no sane creature would be willing to live, the Wildings are a mixed bunch. Some of them are devoted to purging the world of the hellspawn, fear magics of all color, and are generally good people, especially if you love to drink, lots. Others are less appealing, devoted through twisted blood-rites to the Dark Ones, they spread terror in what used to be the border regions, or serve as shock infantry for the demonic armies.
Of the Beastfolk
Seafaring ratfolk, the Skaev were new players in the world. Rising from their tribal lifestyle in the dark swamps of Ghiyahb to a mercantile empire in the last century and a half, they had established consistent trade with kingdoms that only the most learned scholars had heard of, places like Nikan and Assin, in recent years they've moved their floating cities deep into the ocean and their only real contact has been as slavers and pirates, striking coastal towns and vanishing back into the seas. Tales abound of their worship of a blood-thirsty sea god, or their vassalage to the Dark Ones, though this is likely just myth. Physically they average out around four and a half feet, though their ears add another six inches to their height. Their fur is ranges from deep black, through light grey.
Warrior catfolk, the Riadh have inhabited the Je'im subcontinent since time immemorial. Seven feet of predatorial muscle, they're respected and feared as mercenaries, but have never been able to stand each other in groups even approaching a legion, thus saving the world from being dominated by them. They live primarily in tribes, though in the past many of them came in small groups or singly to the Imperium and other human controlled lands seeking wealth and fame. Most cities had at least a few family groups living in them, some had been their for generations, often serving in the guard or army before settling down to a life of child raising, and even then many served as bodyguards to rich merchants or lords. Their fur is often a dark yellow or deep red, though there is a great variation among them, covering pretty much every hair color from white to black.
The desert tribes, and those descended from them are generally less physically impressive, though that's really just comparing a tornado to a slightly larger one, and tend towards lighter colors, generally without any sort of marking on their fur. Stalkers and chasers tend to be slightly faster though with less brute strength than their jungle bred relatives.
The jungle tribes are generally darker, with patterned fur, anything from dots to stripes. Bred to survive against prey that could eat men whole, they developed into murderous ambush hunters, waiting for their prey in the upper branches of trees, or in the brush, they strike quickly and without mercy, though if they fail to wound their prey, they are generally unable to give chase, being slower than their cousins.
The bogeyman in many a childrens tale, they are ugly three feet tall goatmen, they are a race consumed by hatred. Constantly pushed into the most inhospitable reaches of the wastelands, they have become nearly impossible to kill. Living by a philosophy of might makes right, and driven by constant population pressures due to their ridiculous breeding rate, they regularly organized themselves into hordes to strike at human kingdoms, and though individually they are not all that strong, when a horde of them descended on a kingdom, they would cripple or destroy it, stripping the land like a swarm of locusts and using shear numbers to whittle down any defense or fortification. Despite all this, their weapons are prized for their craftsmanship, and no race is their match in the construction of siege weaponry.
The Dark Ones - the demon overlords of Hell, bringers of all suffering. Suffice to say a single one of these has more evil in its left pinky than the demonic hordes infesting the world now have in their entirety. All sorts of bad things comes from being involved with these things, or even being involved with someone who's friends with a family member of a coworker who's involved with these things.
The Sundering - bad juju writ large, the very earth tore itself to pieces, toppling cities, raising mountain ranges where none had been before, spewing more lava and fire out of the ground than has a right to be anywhere except in the most depressing of prophecies. Maps that took ages to make were made useless that day, and in the year that followed, the Long Winter, more died than had in the original catastrophe.
The Impure - if you're wondering just who exactly is one of the Impure, than you are almost definitely one of them; if you know who they are, congratulations, this doesn't actually do you any good as you're likely still on the list. The truth is, the best you can hope for is that you're allowed to go out fighting the Hordes, it's a cleaner death than most of the punishments they have for your kind back in the Dominion.