Beastlands


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Beastlands
Rune of Beastlands
Alignment Neutral (Chaotic) Good
Number of layers 3
Associated Faction Sign of One
Gate-Town Faunel
Inhabitants of Beastlands
Previous
Elysium
Next
Arborea

Physical Conditions

Of all the planes, the Beastlands is the most untamed. This land has no cities, towns, no citadels, just endless wilderness of all types. It is land before civilization, much as its opposition is land after civilization. Any terrain you can find on the prime can be found somewhere within the Beastlands; from meadows and forests to savannahs and veldts to plateaus and chasms. The environment here is lush and wild, the epitome of independence - your survival is ensured by none but yourself. This land so embodies nature that proficiencies dealing with nature (such as tracking or wilderness lore) get a +2 bonus. The sole exception to this is any attempt at foretelling the weather, which suffers a -4 penalty due to the unpredictability of the weather in the Beastlands. The weather is as wild as the plane itself, the sky capable of being completely clear one minute and pouring down torrents of rain from dark storm clouds the next. The skies of the Beastlands are in constant flux, thanks to the presence of the mortai - cloudlike creatures that dwell in the skies of the plane.

Besides the mortai, the sky features two sibling celestial bodies: Selera, the sun, and Noctos, the moon. Each of the three layers of the Beastlands reflects their presence in different amounts. In Krigala, the land of eternal noon, Selera beats down continuously, granting constant light and constant heat to its inhabitants. Brux, the land of neverending twilight, is shined upon by Selera and Noctos in equal measures, Noctos absorbing what it can from his sister and reflecting what it cannot, resulting in a cool climate and a small amount of light from the sky, not quite driving away the shadows in which predators can lurk. And Karasuthra, the land of midnight, possesses Noctos alone, where the bare minimum of light emits from Noctos, leaving a land virtually without illumination.

Even the inhabitants reflect the wilds of the plane, as nearly all mortal beings in the Beastlands are animals. All petitioners not of a specific deity take the form of an animal upon their arrival, albeit an intelligent, articulate one, and all animals of a given type are ruled over by one of the Animal Lords of the plane. Those most well known are the Cat Lord and Wolf Lord, but every type of animal has an individual considered its master, its Lord taking on all characteristics ascribed to its species - both natural and assigned by more intelligent beings, oddly enough. And of course, animals of all types live on the plane, both normal-sized and the rarer giant varieties - these themselves are petitioners as well, but petitioners of animals on the Prime that have since passed on. It's these inhabitants that lead to the common name for the plane amongst the Clueless, the Happy Hunting Grounds.

The wilds of the Beastlands are not limited to its inhabitants, however; visitors to the Beastlands "suffer" its effects just as strongly. Pets, familiars, animal companions, they all find themselves suddenly unfettered by the bounds of domestication. They run free, reveling in the plane, returning just in time to rejoin their masters when they depart. Humanoids have similar effects, as the plane itself grants a feeling of vitality to those who choose to visit. Reflexes seem sharper, senses seem more intense, even ones thoughts seem never fogged by fatigue or exhaustion. Sleep is always restful and food and drink are always satisfying.

Less beneficial, though, is the occurrence known as the beastpox. Being living beings, the wild sides of humanoid beings are themselves encouraged by the primal nature of the Beastlands, emerging as a single animal trait reflecting the inner nature of the individual. This trait expresses itself after a stay of enough time, and no known process suffices to prevent its emergence; all beings with a spark of life within them suffer the pox. Those of a chaotic nature undergo the change most rapidly, within 1-6 hours. Neutral folks can stave it off for 2-24 hours, while lawful folks don't see any effects for 2-5 days, being the most resistant to the effect of the plane. The change is never harmful, but rarely beneficial; the skin of a snake, a sprouting of feathers, a light coating of fur, a pair of ears or a tail; purely minor things. This change persists as long as the character remains on the plane, as well as an equal amount of time once they depart. (Should they leave and return before the trait vanishes, the time they must remain off the plane resets.)

Magical Conditions

Abjuration No change
Conjuration Summoning spells can only conjure residents of the Beastlands, they cannot bring residents of any of the planes adjacent to the Beastlands. Further, there is no magical compulsion within those summoned to obey the summoner; they must do so of their own free will.
Divination Divination spells that call upon the knowledge of other resources or beings fail on the Beastlands, "unnatural" resources having no place here.
Enchantment Spells that control or charm normal animals have no effect on the Beastlands.
Evocation No change
Illusion No change
Necromancy Harmful and damage-causing necromantic spells are cast in the Beastlands as if the caster were one level lower; though death is natural, such spells are not a natural form of death and are thus damped here.
Transmutation No change
Elemental Spells of Elemental Air utterly fail on the Beastlands, due to the presence of the weather-controlling mortai. Spells of Elemental Fire are enhanced, heightened by 1 spell level, on Krigala while impeded on Karasuthra. Spells of Elemental Water are similarly enhanced when cast near large bodies of water, and similarly spells of Elemental Earth are similarly enhanced when cast near large rocky outcroppings or mountains.

Besides merely spells of Elemental Air, any spells dealing with air, wind, or weather such as feather fall, gust of wind, or wind wall are entirely uncastable without a spell key. The mortai of the Beastlands prevent any such spells from functioning here. Fly, though not directly affecting the environment around the spellcaster, suffers similarly; it will only function for those spellcasters that can fly normally without its effects.

Spell Keys

Spell keys on the Beastlands take the form of natural objects, with larger items empowering higher-level spells. Most keys relate in some way to the spells they are meant to allow, making spell keys on this plane amongst the easier to discover, either through research or experimentation. Though not all schools are directly affected, some spell schools contain members which are rendered inert due to the ineffectiveness of air, weather, etc. spells; thus, keys for all schools are mentioned here.

  • Abjuration: Stones and pebbles (needed for elemental aura)
  • Alteration: Blown leaves
  • Conjuration/Summoning: A foodstuff appropriate for the type of creature being summoned (offering some small degree of control over summoning spells), or for pseudoelementals, a large quantity of the desired element
  • Divination: Silver ore
  • Enchantment/Charm: Rock crystals, quartz, geodes
  • Illusion/Phantasm: Feathers (needed for whispering wind)
  • Invocation/Evocation: Branches from trees struck by lightning (needed for wall of fog, stinking cloud, and cloudkill)
  • Necromancy: Bone from the general type of creature the caster wishes to affect
  • Elemental: Naturally created air effects for Elemental Air (smoke from a fire), a bonfire for Elemental Fire, and so on

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