The Hanset are a sleeping giant of a race. Once the owners of an empire of Alexandrian proportions, they new reside in their hidden sub-tropical home, living the simple lives of tribesmen. Though bereft of metal tools, they have adapted to their forest home and it to them. Though their empire is long gone, they still hold onto the seed of its greatness.
Though they usually do not display this quality to outsiders, each Hanaset warrior is a born leader, the least of whome can command a handful of men with authority. The greatest are able to command a nation!
But for now they are an insular race, focused within and not interfering with the outside world. Their own house is still not in order - they are a loose, feuding group of five major tribes, none subsurvient to another. In truth they are unaware of their potential, though very aware of how far they have fallen from their ancestors. Most of the Hanaset do not regret this fall, they view the loss of their empire as deserved fate for their arrogance.
One tribe regrets the fall, at least openly. The proud Maletanalu, the followers of the Great Maw of the Marsh, Malitazum one eyed. The most warlike of the Hanaset, they are the only tribe that the great Lutazum perpetually shuns, both for their rejection of Hanaset morality, violation of taboos and their adoration of the great crocadile.
The Hanaset are at home in their forest home as much as any elf and are excellent archers and trackers. They know how to use virtually every plant in their domain for food, healing and poisons.
The Hanaset At a Glance
- Forest Specialists with advanced Flora lore, Archery, Tracking, Animal Husbandry
- Stong mystical knowlege with interventionist gods and powerful shamans
- Stone Age technology used, Iron Age level known.
- Introverted society, mostly humble but individiually extremely confident, self reliant and charismatic.
Hanaset Language in Brief
Words in the Hanaset language consists exclusively of Consonant/vowel/Consonant and Consonant/vowel forms.
Names of people never end in a vowel.
The Hanaset are usable as a semi-civilized culture found in temperate to tropical wilderness. They are stronger and more capable then they appear - beneath their day to day living in harmony with nature using implements of wood and stone, there exists a people more then capable of raising armies and fighting with steel. Those quaint natives which were sent scurrying into their huts might come out with something a little more effective then stone spears and wicker shields.
The Maletanalu are the hanaset outsiders would be most likely to come into direct conflict with, but even the other tribes will act against intruders who come too close to their settlements. Much like elves, the Hanaset are most likely to engage in hit and run sniping with bows, only engaging in melee combat if cornered. Peacable contact can be made if they are encountered far enough from their villages (except with the Maetanalu, who are quite ferocious in nature).
Assuming peaceful contact is made, individual Hanaset may be persuaded to act as guides for adventuring parties. They serve this role admirably, knowing where best to travel to avoid danger, find food and water, and usually whatever the PCs are there looking for. They will accept most items for payment - they do value gold and jewelry as well as more directly useful items such as weapons and equipment of all types.
The PC’s ship is washed up in the swampy territory of the Maletanalu and need to evade their patrols while making their way back to civilization. This trip will bring them through at least two other Hanaset tribe regions for better or worse.
The Chosen One
The time has come for the Hanaset to arise again and help lead the world against some great evil. However, the Hanaset are not aware of it and the person in question will not be easily convinced. Of course, the forces of darkness will seek to destroy the PC’s, the Hanaset, and anyone else to obtain victory. Some hanaset might vigourously oppose any intervention in the outside world, and the Maletanalu may take this time as an opportunity to attack as well.
2.1 Tribal Societies
2.2.1 Hanaset Zodiac
2.3 Combat, Honor and War
2.4 Literacy and Language
2.5 Magic & Technology
3 Brief History of the Hanaset
The Hanaset are an attractive people, with olive-skin and understated, somewhat oriental features. They are physically small, averaging 5’ in height with few exceptional individuals.
Hair color ranges from black to a light brown shy of blonde. Eye color is primarily a deep brown, though lighter shades up to grey are occasionally encountered. Clothing is made from dyed Ralu-fibre, or more rarely, Ralu leather. It is colored with vegetable dyes and adorned with beads. Actual colors and details vary significantly by tribe. The Hanaset are lean and well muscled, and apart from those crippled by injury or disease, are very active and fit.
Additional Ideas (7)
2.0 The People
As a people, the Hanaset are proud and confident, and largely this is tempered by humility. Respect is given equally for strength, skill, courage or knowlage. They are not bound by spirituality - they live mostly in the here and now and do not concern themselves overmuch on spirituality. They are not athestic however - each tribe has at least one physical totem of divinity that they see at least a few times of the year. As such they are firmly convinced of the existence of the divine.
2.1 Tribal Societies
The Hanaset people are divided into five tribes - Husenalu, Ramenalu, Zeranalu, Serinalu and Maletanalu. Of these, the first four are considered 'proper' hanaset, and the 5th tribe, Maletanalu is treated as a pariah by the others. The cause of this disconnect is the 5ths tribe's reverence of Malitazum.
2.1.1 HusenaluThe Husenalu is the second largest Hanaset tribe, only the Maletanalu are larger. They consider themselves to be the favorites of Lutazum and many of the tribe are related to the great Hatumah. The Tortise is a very common theme through all of these people's artifacts, more so then any of the other tribes. They are the most diciplined in combat of the hanaset, partly from their frequent battles with the Maletanalu. Woven plant fiber is the source of most Husenalu clothing, Ralu fiber being reserved for their higher-status members. Stone-tipped spears, bladed clubs, nets and shields are their most common weapons, along with ornately carved throwing clubs.
2.1.2 Ramenalu Sequestered in the most densely forested area, the Ramenalu have the best hunters and the fewest livestock. They are also the most shy tribe and have well hidden villages within the tree tops. They have no real interest in outsiders, and unless pressed by circumstances will not reveal their presence to intruders. Ramenalu are all expert treeclimbers and typically bear only small weapons and no armor. They also have exceptional knowlege among the Hanaset of the use of medicinal plants.
2.1.3 Zeranalu The Zeranalu are the Ralu masters amoung the hanaset - they have bred varieties of the beast that they jealously hold back from the other tribes. This has lead to violence from time to time, as other tribes seek to steal some of their prized beasts. The Ralu plays an central part of Zeranalu culture - it being the source of most of their goods. Clothing is universally composed of fine ralu-quill fiber that is skillfully dyed and woven into ornate patterns. Common weapons with Zeranalu are winged-spears and blowguns shooting poisoned Ralu-quills.
2.1.4 Serinalu Withing the Hanaset lands lie the ruins of an ancient stone city of some lost race older then man. The Serinalu inhabit the above-ground structures and have carefully walled up any entry below ground. The elder serinalu may know why, but there is a taboo about speaking of it, and definately against breaking any of the seals. They hold this taboo so strongly that they will resort to violence to prevent any entry, regardless of the reason. The Serinalu have cultivated a tree that produces a cotton-like fiber that they use extensively for clothing and most closely resembles that of other civilizations. They also have a propensity towards facial tattoos made from irridescent dyes unique to their region. Fine stone axes,spears and hammers are their preferred weapons, tipped with excellent obsidian and surgically sharp.
2.1.5 Maletanalu The Maletanalu are unique amoung the hanset tribes for their reverence of Malitazum, brother and rival spirit to Lutazum. They are the most xenophobic and agressive of the tribes, and are often at war with their neighbors. They might deal with their rival tribes civilly from time to time, but they are at best dreadfully rude and abusive towards any outsiders. At worst they are homicidal and seek to present any intruders to Maletanalu as food. Maletanalu typically wear leather sourced from the crocodiles that frequent their swampy homeland. Most artifacts and weapons bear reptilian - mostly crocodilian - motifes. A club studded with teeth is their tribal weapon, though shortbows are also a popular weapon.
2.2 Hanaset Zodiac and the Totems
The Hanset revere a number of totems of greater and lesser power, animals of mystical power and origin. Of the totems, two hold the greatest status - Malitazum and Lutazum. Both Malitazum and Lutazum are powerhouses of mystical power, Lutazum the incarnation of Hutamah the One Chief, and Malitazum, the remnant of the Vile Shaman. Both dwell physically in the Hanaset lands and are constant reminders of the powers of the Gods. Lutazum is typically associated with the summer solstice, while Malitazum is associated with the Winter solstice. The remainder of their Zodiac is as follows:
Talamu the Quick - A Ralu gifted with the ability to become invisible.
Visalu the Stoneeater - A Musalu - a type of venomous beetle whose larva are used for food. Visalu is by legend nearly the size of Lutazum, but has never been seen. His venom has been said to be so strong, that it will melt stone.
Mutaru - A fresh-water sunfish. Malitazum is always seeking to eat this brilliant fish, but she has always managed to evade him, usually in very embarrassing ways. She is a trickster image.
Rutanalu - A Wood-dwarf, a mythical being native to the Hanaset lands, but never seen. Said to be the builder of the stone city that the Serinalu dwell in.
Letumalu - A bird of paradise. Letumalu is a figure of both beauty and greed, and is said to have a vast nest of woven gold.
Timalenu - A large Squirrel. Timalenu is an unlikely figure of great wisdom and intelligence and has a taste for Hanaset foods.
Valulamu - A grey Elephant. Valulamu is at times patient and wise, but is struck by fits of anger and rage and is nearly as dangerous as Malitazum. Often subject to machinations of Mutaru the sunfish.
Mesalu The Weaver - A Mesulu monkey. Known for her craftsmanship and weaving skill, she is said to have taught the hanaset much of their woodcraft. She is forever stalking Talamu to steal his quills for her projects.
Tululu - A great mobile tree. This tree has never been seen by the Hanaset, but is said to dwell in the deepest parts of the forest. He acts as a mediator among the other totems and attempts to settle their differences.
Mufulu - A frog with chameleon-like abilities, he is known for his ability to sing and to sound like anything he chooses. Also associated with good luck, he is a common motif in household items.
2.3 Combat, Honor and WarAlthough normally peaceful, conflicts and raids do occur between all of the Hanaset tribes. All out war has not occured for centuries, due primarily to the common reference for Lutazum and the Hanaset dieties. With a realtively strong relationship between the four tribes, the 5th tribe will not engage in a true war either, aware that the other four tribes would band together to defeat them, or any other external threat for that matter. Hanaset weapons are usually devoid of metal, what metal they have being used for tools. This does not mean their weapons are ineffective - they have excellent knowlege of the materials they have and use magic to suppliment the natural materials. In general they use bone and obsidian tipped spears, as well as blowguns, slings, bows and arrows, along with edged clubs. The Hanaset rarely if ever use armor - their climate and materials tends to restrict this. What armor they have is generally woven Ralu quill carefully reinforced to provide equivilent protection to hard leather.
2.4) Literacy and Language
The Hanaset are a literate people, but they generally do not exercise this day to day. Written documents are used primarily for record keeping and inter-village communication. The Hanaset have two written languages - they have a cunifrom language used primarily with clay tablets, though they also use it seared into leather using heated metal dies. This langauge is a holdover from their empirial era and is used primarily by the Hanaset shamans to refer to the ancient works of that era. It also is used for village records, wills and similar official documents. The second, most commonly written langauge uses a combination of colored beads and ornate knotwork tied into Ralu fibre cord. It is used primarily for 'letters' sent between the hanaset tribes, usualy carried by Lutazum the Tortoise. Generally the beads used are color-fast so that these documents can remain legible for a great deal of time afterward. The most important concepts are depicted with beads, the subtle concepts, punctuation are carried via knotwork. As a result, even when the fibre rots away, it may be possible to decypher old works via the order and location of beads, assuming the beads are undisturbed.
Spoken Language of the Hanaset
The Hanaset language consists exclusively of Consonant/vowel/Consonant and Consonant/vowel forms. Take for example the name of the people itself: Hanaset - People(et) of Hanas
Other words: Hutumah - Proper name
Lutazum - Proper name
Letasur - Green Kingdom
Leta - Green Sur - Kingdom
Tili - Small Ralu - Common domestic animal, source of foodstuffs and fiber.
Ralutulu,Ralusalu,Raluhilu - Different breeds of Ralu
Tul - Meat
Sal - Quill
Hil - Musk
Velasu - Ritual Combat
Musalu - Large beetle, venomous.
The Hanaset have 3 levels of pronouns used to describe social acceptance of the subject. They have subhuman (or outsider), human and superhuman(spirits, gods, kings, etc). To refer to a Hanaset using the subhuman pronouns is a deadly insult.
Pronoun Human Me Nal We Nalu You Mal You(plural) Malu He Tal She Val It Ral It(Plural) Ralu They Salu Pronoun Superhuman Me Nas We Nasu You Mas You(plural) Masu He Tas She Vas It Ras It(Plural) Rasu They Sasu Construction of Hanaset Words: Vowel sounds: a,e,i,u Consonants h,l,m,n,r,s,t,v,z
2.5 Magic and Technology
The Hanaset War-shamans are the most effective defenses of the Hanaset, keeping from under the heel of foreign invaders like many stone-age tribes. Strongly tied to nature, but still linked to the powers of the Arcane, they prove deadly foes in their forest home. They are also masters in the art of Entwining. One of their number ranks among the greatest human practitioners in the world - Helematalana. This shamaness bears countless entwined enchantments in her waist-long hair and is protected by a throng of unseen spirits.
The Hanaset have a extensive library of documents containing most technologies known, but many of these are not used due to the limited resources of their lands, and due to their intent to avoid the problems of their imperial days. This library and its location is never revealed to outsiders. They currently live a stone-age lifestyle, though they do possess some metal implements gained through trade. They do not work or smelt metals themselves (except precious metals) due to excessive fuel requirements. They do not construct many stone structures, due primarily to the relative scarcity of suitable stone in their lands. They have, however, an advanced knowlege of textiles, herbs and animal husbandry. The latter being evidenced by their domestication and breeding of various native animals, expecially the Ralu.
3.0 History of the Hanaset
The Hanaset are an ancient people who have waxed and waned over millenia. At one time, the Hanaset had a great and wide empire and were a highly aggressive and expansionist people. They were a strong and proud people and made glorious war upon their neigbors, carving out their empire and subjegating many peoples. Their empire endured for centuries, and as generally happens, the vitality of the empire waned over time - the people falling into decadance. Only the legendary skill of their warriors held their empire together.
Unfortunately, this too waned, as the noble caste of warriors turned more and more into the persuit of wealth and pleasure, and less towards martial preparedness. The end came when the last of the Hanaset Emperors, NameHere, decided to extend the empire still further over the lands of the Ku!, a primitive but magically powerful tribal people.
The war, which was expected to end quickly, instead became long and drawn out, and served to grind up what was left of the empire's skilled warriors. The many vassel states, historically brutally opressed by the Hanaset took advantage of the Hanaset/Ku! war to unify and rebel against the Hanaset. Weakened by the war, and already strained, the empire collapsed rapidly.
Shortly therafter, the enemies of the Hanaset unified to wage a war of extermination against them, driving the suriviors from their land. After a hazardous migration, the Hanaset made their way to their current land. Forced to move without preparation, they had left behind most items of value and were forced back into a largely stone-age society. For many years the scattered people were disorganized and little more then isolated clans until Hutumah united them briefly into a single nation. After his death, the nation collapsed into six tribes, of which five remain to this day.