This is a Dungeons & Dragons campaign being played by J, K, S, and L, with Brent as the DM.
The game is set on Eldeshi, a small world surrounded by an asteroid belt. The story centers on the kingdom of Hanaa, which is a major part of the spice trade.
The world includes underground cities and ruins (think Moria), as well as beautiful mountain kingdoms (think Rivendell).
There are no sentient non-human races. There are a few wild, weird beasts on the periphery. Dragons are mythological beasts.
There are no generic zombies, no vampires, and no demons in the Judeo-Christian sense.
Pieces of fantastical old technology are scattered about the world. They range from laser pistols to crashed ships. These require engineering to fix and make use of.
Magic actually consists of nanobots controlled by the human mind. Humans used to have perfect control over these nanobots, but over the centuries, mutations have made mastery of magic rare. Anyone can learn a few basic spells like Light, but only about 10% of the populace can progress beyond that, and of those, less than 1% become powerful spellcasters.
These nanobots have created a sort of animism. Objects possessed for many years by one person become invested with nanobots that can make the item pseudo-sentient, or more powerful if used by the owner, or more powerful if used to complete one of the owner's missions, etc.
The Founders (those of the ships who first established societies.) The Empress of Samrajya gets the Mandate of Heaven from the matriarchs of the first research party. Hanaa is the center of trade for the known world. Everything can be bought here.
Hanaa was a prosperous, comfortable, and relatively remote province of the eastern Kerala empire centuries ago. Kerala's collapse caused Hanaa to evolve into its own city-state. Its plentiful natural resources, particularly its rich veins of metal, made it powerful. However, multiple wars with greedy outsiders have kept its military exhausted and unable to expand the country's borders.
Its first major war was with the rich Tugu traders from the far east. While the Tugu opened up trade with Hanaa and made it a massive center of trade, they wanted to take over. This started an on-again, off-again conflict that dragged on for 80 years, with Golden Pavan trading hands several times. It ended with the taking of the Tugu's Five Towers and immolation of all Tugu in the capital. The Towers were since rebuilt into the Five Towers of Magic.
The second conflict lasted 12 years, in which Hyder Ali attempted to expand the nearby caliphate of Myzore into Hanaa. He attacked Hanaa several times, succeeding at first but was faced with so many riots combined with problems back home he was forced to retreat. He attacked Hanaa several more times, but was ultimately undone by his overextended war.
Hanaa is currently in the middle of a power struggle between the Astalon and Jask clans. Emperor Darven (Jask) IV died 3 months ago in the Battle of the Looms, putting Giren Astalon on the throne. Giren Astalon is the only person with any remote blood claim to the throne still alive, except for the moderate claims of his half-brother Dozle and his half-sister Kycilia (they were born from a different mother).
The Emperor lives in a vast palace with a huge number of servants in the capital city of Golden Pavan. The imperial court is a city unto itself, and anyone associated with it receives the royal tattoo–a stylized, curved dragon–on back of their right hand. Imperial servants (which includes local magistrates and chiefs-of-police) receive an absurd number of perks and must be treated with respect, though there is growing unrest about this.
The palace borders a lake, and opposite it each House has built a Summer House, each of which contains a grand veranda and docks. House business – especially that which requires representatives of multiple houses – is conducted here, under the colorful House banners.
This is a cold, mountainous land in the north of the continent, ruled by Brigit's mother. Her main adviser, Akar, told Ahjay where to find Brigit.
A caliphate between Samarjya and Hanaa, Myzore consists of a number of largely independent emirates that pledge allegiance to the Sultan of Sokoto (Sokoto being the capital of Myzore). The caliphate built sakbé roads and ribats (fortified hostels / retreats / monasteries) in return for the emirates' loyalty.
The official religion of the country is Ashra, an arcane religion of many practices and beliefs with several denominations. It has one primary text, the Book of Ebon Bindings, and about a dozen minor works stitched together by its 101 prophets.
Slavery is widespread. Slaves are captured from nearby kingdoms and taught the Ashra religion in the hopes their families will convert, but claims of conversion are treated with suspicion and a slave typically requires a superheroic act of faith to be set free. Children of slaves are not viewed with such suspicion and, if they demonstrate Ashran piety, are usually freed upon adolescence.
Ashra teaches (among many other things) the importance of meditation and learning of simple magic. All Ashrans use magic to create small lights, read occasional surface thoughts, and such. Ashran clerics are often very skilled sorcerers and healers.
The current Sultan, Hyder Ali, is a harsh man starting another push to expand his empire. He won many slaves during the War of the Looms, and is looking to get more.
Nuvania is nestled in the low mountains north of Hanaa. Further north are the frozen mountains of the Zem.
Nuvania benefits from lush and fertile land, making it a major exporter of wine, mutton, and essential oils used in many potions. Combined with its hilly terrain and its peoples' firm pacifism, no battles have been fought here for over two centuries.
Its bustling capital city, Sharn, is home to many thriving guilds, societies, and clubs. It's a prosperous, cosmopolitan place of solid, unassuming architecture, governed by the Guild Council.
Brigit is one of the Zem from the wild, cold north. She is actually the daughter of Darven III (the recently-deceased emperor's father, who was a well-respected leader whose ship was caught in a storm and sank only 5 years into his reign).
She was betrothed to someone, but not feeling it at all. She then ran away to the underground part of the capital city. She used basic survival skills to survive there until she found someone she could seduce for their armor and weapons. She then murdered that person, only then noticing the tattoo revealing the victim was part of her family.
She then went crazy and ran to a different part of the city and trained in hiding.
Mahiya comes from Samarjya, a matriarchal society. Her house researches and makes use of old tech in warfare, particular siege weapons and defenses. Her country invaded Hanaa but did so in a way that nearly tore it apart. She is sent to Hanaa as a peace offering / mild hostage.
Mahiya takes the Juice of Saphoo, which increases the power of one's nanobot usage (and, over time, colors the whites of the user's eyes blue). She needs it about once a week before going into withdrawal, which causes stomach pain, blurred vision, and a decrease of nanobot power. Saphoo is quite expensive back in her country, but moderately priced in Hanaa.
The Samarjya Empire has heard of Brigit and sent Mahiya to find Brigit and install her on the throne.
Orphan of a Myzore warlord. Now works for House Maudling. It has worked its way up to a position of power and effectiveness.
Lord Maudling has heard this rumor of this daughter of the throne. He wants her as a puppet, hoping she'll be a good ruler.
See also Major Characters.
Each player starts each session with one Plot Point. A player can spend a Plot Point to add one fact to the world. Players can gain more Plot Points for cool role-playing.
At the beginning of each session, one player should give a brief retelling of the previous session. That player's character gains inspiration. Any player that wrote up a session report for the previous session gains inspiration.
Brent would like to change the earning of XP so it's based on the number of hours played.