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Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Kelvernia: Sulat

Okay, I've been boring everyone with these setting nation blurbs long enough. This is the last one. I saved Sulat until the end because I felt it was the most interesting (or at least crucial) to the setting's history, as well as being a potentially rich source of adventure hooks.

Sulat was once the seat of the Sulati Empire, which ruled nearly all of Kelvernia. From what is now Lossara to the edges of Glaw, all peoples were under the thumb of the serpent empire. The sulati ruled the seas in their bronze war galleys and conquered wherever they went. The subject nations tithed food, wealth, and slaves to their masters, and sorcerer-priests sacrificed prisoners to their dark god Baal. The demihuman races were hunted to near extinction, and fled from human lands.

Such was the way of the world for over twenty generations, until nearly all the conquering forces were suddenly withdrawn from the vassal states, ordered to return immediately to Sulat. The native peoples seized their chance and rose up against the reduced garrisons, defeating their oppressors. When the newly freed men of Kelvernia mustered enough forces, they sailed on Yarlat, the imperial capital.

What they found was desolation. Nearly half the city was leveled and corpses choked the streets. Signs pointed to some massive battle, but only Sulati dead were found. Later, the invaders discovered that some of the Sulati had fled into the jungles, but attempting to track them all down was a useless endeavor. The power of the empire had been broken.

Today, Sulat is a shell of its former self. Its people are dark and thin. In place of their former arrogance is now a low cunning. Some trade still occurs at Yarlat, as the jungles yield rare plants and woods, but the city is still mostly ruins, with ramshackle structures littered around the harbor.

The changed are common here, moreso than in most parts of Kelvernia. Some folk believe this is related to the empire's demise, but the demon star appeared hundreds of years after Sulat fell. Metalmen are conspicuously absent, however.

The dread worship of Baal, once the state religion of Sulat, is now outlawed everywhere. The "new" sulati claim to follow the Five, but rumors persist of hidden jungle temples that still practice human sacrifice.

The language of Old Sulat was never the lingua franca of Kelvernia. Rather, it was the tongue of kings and priests. Much magical lore and ancient history is written in its script. Today's Common Tongue –or "New Imperial"– is a descendant of the "Low Sulat"tongue and a pidgin of various indigenous languages.

OK! That sums up the basics of the geography. The (initial) info I would give the players would be much shorter. Probably just a line or two. Next up I think I need to make a few more rules decisions and then move on to working up some actual campaign/adventure hooks. 

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