"I've been tethered to the side of a spaceship, nothing but a thin layer of carbon fabric between my nuts and the vacc, and I've looked up from the panel or whatever is broken and seen all those stars. It use to make me feel small, but not anymore. Cause after a few runs between those stars, it changes. It will change for you. You will realize that the closer you get to those stars the smaller everything gets. You know what I saying? Ain't that many goldilocks worlds, but there are tons of little rocks circling fainter stars. And almost every little rock has a little petty king scraping out a living and fighting with another little king."
- Buck Leftyork, FTO Mission Engineer
Interstellar warfare is logarithmic. The plan for the attack begins by considering questions of hundreds of billions of kilometers. How will we get people and equipment from all over the galaxy to orbit the star of the planet we intend to take? Those logistical threads can get tied into knots that are literally light years long. Then once we have our force in star system it becomes a question of millions of kilometers. How do we get to this planet safely and quietly? Then we have to make the landing, thousands of kilometers. Next there is a question of defending the LZ: hundred of kilometers. Once the air support is dealt with and the artillery is neutralized, we’ve got to reach the objective. Then finally there is the soldiers’ combat. That is when the scale collapses quickly. A fight we started light years away can end because we had to cross two meters of open field or because a piece of shrapnel was a millimeter too close.
-Awl-70000891, Captain, Dynastic Army
"I keep my sanity tied to my hip with very thin thread. Somedays when I am pushing through the throngs of people all staring at tiny screens in their heads or in their hands I start feel that thread slipping. On those days I know that my only salvation is docked at the spaceport. My savior is not some luxury liner or high speed transport filled with perfectly balanced environments and a history of 'punctuality'. This man's spaceport messiah is more often than not a century old craft whose airlock is caked with the mud of a hundred worlds, with a computer programed in a dead language and a captain that makes his living looking for the slimmest trade margins in the most distant stars. When I sign on to the crew of such a craft I feel my thread of sanity tighten. I know that when we break through that blue ceiling we will be passing the soul crushing civilized worlds and heading for the fainter stars."
-J. Mitchell Overnantuck, Unlicensed Jump Drive Navigator
The classic swamp, filled with a purveying dampness and faint mist. Clouds of buzzing biting insects drift over vast expanses of soggy marsh and brackish water. Lone trees tilt towards the sky, struggling against the purveying rot.
Swamplands are a unique environment and therefore offer you unique game play options.
This article will give you ideas on how to bring your swamps to life and make the most of these interesting settings - regardless of how powerful the PCs are.
A cool, Northern land, populated by the strange Maskenfolk
There are few places more treacherous than pools of quicksand save for a sea of quicksand. Those who tread here quickly find that the lust for adventure or coin might leave them with a sinking feeling of despair.
I dream of rain; I dream of gardens in the desert sand
--Sting, Desert Rose
"They said it would bring us a new age of wonder, of exploration, of excitement. I don't think this is what they meant: us scurrying around like rats in our cities of steam and steel, far away from the land and the sun."
Where Gods go to Grieve
The wastes are cruel, and beneath the desolation they hide many secrets.
"It is amazing to me how this one little stretch of water has changed the course of history," History of The New Country by Collen D’Madden Blue Diamond Press
According to the legend, Dread Velsparge, Daemon Prince of the Myriad Hands, plunged into the Tarakhen Sea in a blaze of scarlet flame, throwing the whole world into ruin.
The Marches be a vast sea of grass dividing the civilized parts of The Land.
The Ocadian Desert is a desolate place. The spirit of the land has been crushed, changing the region from a series of islands with evergreen forests and animals in a shallow sea, to one of the most inhospitable places on the Sphere.
Wieberburl, home of the peculiar Book-Fish.
As the officer strides into the thick and oppresive pitch-black gloom of the jungle, he silently signals to his men to fan out in a classic Quarsooth battle-formation with a nervous hand-gesture. He is very tense, almost afraid. The soothing, omnipresent presence in his mind tells him that he has no reason to worry, assuring him that victory will belong to those noble warriors that carry the standard of the invincible race of Zor-Tanis.
But there is something else cutting through the easy promises offered by that pleasant, gently commanding entity in his mind, as if determined to seize all his attention and use it to torment his imagination until it begins to scream for mercy. This something he cannot define and put words to, but it makes his skin crawl nevertheless. Despite the heat of the jungle, his blazing gold body-armor had suddenly become a chill prison that raises uncomfortable goosebumps along his chest.
Woried muttering from the rear tell him that his men like him, are unsettled. Turning aound in irritation, he begins to hiss at them to remain silent, afraid of alerting the very band of murdering monstrosities they have finally tracked into this eerie wilderness. It would be a rather embarassing matter for their commander if the very quarry they had been relentlessly pursuing for the past week or so, were to suddenly turn around and massacre all of them.
Too late he feels a something slithering around his neck. Fearful that it might be a pyhton, he reackes for his massive ‘‘fire-bow’‘, determined to incinerate the scaled menace before it can crush his larynx. But before his fingers even have a chance to close around the handle of the weapon hanging from his belt, another coil slithers out of the darkness and out of the darkness and pinions his arm, holding it in a painful crushing crip. As agony swamps him, he can vaguely hear a grim sound of cracking bones through the pain-filled haze that now holds him. His arm is being crushed. And then so quickly that his stunned mind has no time to register this new fact, there is no time left for more thought. The coil looped around his throat begins to squeeze, suffocating him. As the officer’s head begins to swim in the final moments of his life, he finally gains an excellent look at the thing that is stealing his life.
It is not a snake, but a vine. As if in response to this discovery, a now terrifyingly familiar roar of bestial fury rings through the gloom of the jungle..
The Land of 1,000 gods, Calcobrina burns under the gaze of the Lion’s Eye.
There is a place where only the foolhardy and the greedy dare to go. Why do I say foolhardy, because of all of the poor souls who have entered that dark place…none have yet to return.
Culture/Religion: based on fear and respect. Gods are very dangerous creatures, sometimes friendly, often not. Temples are the way to make contact with them... if not easier, then at least more concentrated in one place. Were it not for the temples, gods could be running amok among the people. Therefore, mortals have to keep the gods close to temples, entertained and worshipped. It doesn't make the bad ones any friendlier, though (and is no guarantee some won't go on trips now and then). Still, there have to be priests that are hardy men, able to survive the rigours of their position, get a sufficient number of worshippers to make the gods feel important enough, and mediate the contact between mortals and immortals.