Current Capital Notes - ALPHA

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Current Capital Notes - ALPHA

Postby PTTG » Fri Nov 15, 2013 2:15 am

Races in Succession

In Succession, there are no non-human sentients... or, at least, no widespread ones. However, there are very marginally close cousins of humanity- closer than Neanderthal, but farther than any modern real-world ethnicities. These races might have widespread magical or semi-magical changes, or may be entirely mundane. There are, therefore, no "basic" humans. Some groups are ethnically exclusive, some are broader. Naturally, Capital is the most liberal city in the most liberal empire in the world, meaning that unless you make racial trouble, there won't be racial trouble... most of the time.

However, that is not the whole story. There are legends of other kinds of intelligence out there, but most of them are veritably false, such as the supposed existence of Faries, proved a logical impossibility in 1255. Possibly the magical mutation of individuals might explain some of the stranger creatures that are present, and it is true that occasionally a truly unique creature will emerge from the still-unknown wilderness, from the depths of the sea, or perhaps from the bowels of the earth.


PC Urban
Not a true race, but rather the kind of mix that only hundreds of generations in a melting pot of unusual size can produce. "Urban" can as a word represent the great nobility of the spirit of unity that pervades the city, or be said with the same utter disgust as "mutt". This is not, in fact, an equal mixing; the most obviously visible influences are Anthian, Rahanii, Ubuntu, and Chi... with occasional hints of other parentage. Frankly, no race is entirely "pure"- though some factions pretend to be. Urban people are simply too difficult to categorize.

PC Anthian
A race that seems to be everywhere, Anthians have long been the rulers of society. For many centuries, the ruling families of much of the land around Capital have been Anthian, and to this day the ruling class has been of Anthian lines. Indeed, the former Emperor was a classical Anthian, possessing violet eyes, black hair, and the "Imperial Finger," the sixth finger (and toe) that marks members of the Anthian race apart. Not all Anthians are so stereotypical, naturally. Eye color varies from any shade of blue to violet, with the rare pale red. Hair color is either very fair or very dark. The skin tone of the average Anthian is very light, with more of a yellowing instead of a darkening in sunlight, and Albinism is slightly more common than average.

The dramatic revelation of the dispossessed noble's imperial toe has been so overused in popular plots that it has long ago been disregarded by serious playwrights.

In physical build, Anthians are have long been considered "perfect"... by themselves. However, they do tend to be of average height and weight when in reasonable health.

Socially, they are expected to be somewhat demanding and imperialistic. This can lead to strains in communication with the lower classes of society, no matter the race. On the other hand, Anthian families are usually comfortable, or strive to maintain the appearance of such, and thus education and social elevation come naturally to them.

Despite a historical bias, in recent decades, the nobility has not been overly dominated by Anthians; nor are they under-represented amongst the lower classes. An Anthian PC can be of any profession or class, a social flexibility that they don't often appreciate.

PC Rahanii
Red-haired, strong-backed hill-folk... traditionally. They usually have red hair, but it can be most colors, but they are identified in Imperial culture by their tendency towards green luminescence; some are born with glowing green skin patterns, but all will, when tattooed with certain inks, develop luminescence. The Rahanii have long been at odds with the Anthians; they are geographically close, with the Anthians settling on rivers and plains and the Rahanii living in the hills, forests, and moors. For many generations, Rahanii were treated as peasants for Anthian nobles. This has changed in the past century, but the stigma remains between the two groups.

Rahanii are physically shorter than Anthians, and though their hair is stereotypically very red, it can be any shade from a dark brown to a gold. Their skin tone has the same basic range as Anthians, but it tends to be darker, and it becomes richer in the sun. Their eyes are brown to green.

A figurative black swan. Kobolds appear quite alien, and differ from other humans in many subtle and overt ways. They rarely grow taller than three feet, making them shorter than even Vysokogorns. Their skin is covered in thin, leathery scales, or perhaps a scaly hide. Necromancers that have examined them reveal that Kobolds have substantially different skeletal structures- visible in their unusual flexibility and backwards-bending knees. They have a pronounced muzzle and reptile-like eyes, but they also have large, triangular ears- making them distinct from reptiles as well. They lay eggs like a reptile, yet suckle young. Indeed, even intellectually, they are a curiosity: They appear to have great difficulty learning normal languages, counting with numbers, or even comprehending social structure. And yet, they are able to communicate vast amounts of information quickly in their own strange language, they can process intuitively the relations of large numbers, and retain a personal genealogy though centuries with no formal records at all. One theory is that they are a cursed race that has performed some great evil in the past- indeed, it is a popular one. Others feel that Kobolds are natural, but alien to humanity, and might be equals in merit, inferior, or even superior.

Whatever their nature, Kobolds have integrated with Capital society well, and with the empire as a whole somewhat less well. They are frequently slaves in mines and forges, anywhere they can work in the dark. In Capital, it is illegal to own any slaves (at the behest of several laborer's guilds), but bigotry against Kobolds persists. Still, they are talented workers, and those that cannot work live in the basements, gutters and sewers of the city, an unknown group of strangers in the ground.

PC Andaru
Almost half of the Empire consists of Andaru nations and cities. Like Anthian and Rahanii states, Andaru settlements have grown prosperous and open in recent centuries... but there have been many conflicts between them and lands they are now a part of.

Andaru citizens are recognized by their dark skin tones... however, they vary more than Anthians do from this standard.

PC Lakinyeri
Masterful and ebon, a Lakinyeri can be recognized by perfectly black skin, and no hair. Those raised in good conditions are generally quite tall. However, Imperial society generally recognizes the defining trait of the Lakinyeri to be the presence of an additional pair of ribs, detectable under close scrutiny.

The Lakinyeri have a remarkable talent for languages

A desert people, they have remained quite mysterious to Imperial culture, unlike the familiar Andaru.

PC Cantii
Distant coastal mainland people. The Cantii are most easily recognized by a sallow complexion and distinctive facial features. They are also slightly shorter than average. The only other physical trait of note is their exceptional ability to hold their breath, and often, slightly more webbing between fingers and toes.

PC Third People
Rarely seen in Capital, the primary people of a strange and distant land. Their scalp (and facial hair) grows colorful feathers in addition to hair. Anyone with this trait is usually recognized as largely of Third People descent. One thing which confuses outsiders is the great popularity of scarring amongst Third People. Most people who have lived in Third communities have at least one ringlike scar around a finger, or around an arm. Less commonly known about are those with great scars over the heart, liver, or lungs... These are the results of rituals only whispered about amongst outsiders.

Not all Third People have (successful) ritual scars, and many are cosmetically missing a portion of ear, or nose... or finger... The magical rituals involved in these are said to imbue one in some magical power, or perhaps treat illness.

Traditionalist Third People rarely interact with outsiders. However, Capital is home to a reasonably-sized population of Thirds who have assimilated into Urban culture. They DO make good physicians, but they are also skilled archers, boat-makers, and merchants, when they stick to traditional careers.

Physically, Third People are generally not as grub-like as the pale Anthians or Rahanii, nor quite as dark-toned as the Andaru. If not for the Feathers and slightly taller-than-average build, they wouldn't stand out in a normal city crowd. However, the feathers are a useful quirk when grown out, and their ritual scars are unusually tough; these can provide DR 1 for some specific situations.

PC Krampa
A reclusive, beast-like people, the Krampa have only recently begun to integrate into society as free individuals... though occasional caged (but feral) individuals were kept as "pets" by the more barbaric rulers of history. Krampa are usually eight feet tall, or more, and possess vast strength and coarse black hair like iron wool. This woolly coat hides any features besides the prominent brow ridge, the fierce beady eyes, and the disturbingly large teeth. Despite the wild and aggressive nature of the average Krampa, they are not essentially violent or savage; however, they are coarse and usually have little exposure to civilization.

Originally inhabitants of the vast forested regions of the Empire, the Krampa have gradually migrated to other places, as often enslaved as free. They have at times been taken aboard ship as paid sailors- their strength more than makes up for lack of dexterity- they have been to almost as many ports as Rahanii sailors.

There is little need to distinguish between Krampa and others- either one is eight feet tall and covered in hair, or not. However, Krampa have a distinctive roar of sorts which others cannot easily duplicate.

While they are usually considered bestial, that is not the case with all Krampa. Individuals may be as gentle and even thoughtful as any other person, and indeed, when food is plentiful and there is little need for conflict, even totally "wild" Krampa do not attack without provocation. Where Krampa befriend smaller people, they form deep friendships, as fiercely loyal as can be imagined.
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Re: Current Capital Notes - ALPHA

Postby PTTG » Fri Nov 15, 2013 2:16 am

Other places in SUCCESSION:

Hundun: very possible the only city to compete with Captial in age, if not size; the anchient and distant capital of the kingdom of Pangu.

Q'uq'umatz: An independent city-state or some other unique cultural group on the distant continent of Xbalanque which seems to be the main origin of Third People in Capital. Very, very little is known.
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Re: Current Capital Notes - ALPHA

Postby PTTG » Fri Nov 15, 2013 2:17 am

People of CAPITAL:

Alexander Khalhi Lycurgus V:
The Emperor of the world-spanning Empire of which Capital is the Capital.

The Lycurgus dynasty originated 232 years before the assassination of Emperor Lycurgus the Fifth. His death marked the end of the dynasty.

He was a master manipulator, balancing all of the various power groups of Capital itself and the Empire at large against one another.

The Lycurgus dynasty merged with the Kalhi line with the wedding of Chyrasos Lycurgus II to Maryam Kalhi, an arangement which solidified the then-new alliance of the Empire and the Sietar-Kalhi Kingdom.

His ancestor Emperor Lycurgus the First overtook the previous dynasty in a complex coup, and is sometimes known as Lycurgus of Anthia.
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Re: Current Capital Notes - ALPHA

Postby PTTG » Fri Nov 15, 2013 2:18 am

0 SC Succession Crisis: Emperor Khalhi Lycurgus V is assasinated. The Modern Day. All events after this should be written in the future tense, and are subject to change.

-55 SC Emperor Khalhi Lycurgus V born.

-197 SC

-232 SC Lycurgus of Anthia takes up the mantle of Emperor, overthrowing the existing dynasty.

-329 SC The New Empire is founded after an economic collapse precipitating a small dark age.

-1,800 SC Capital gains its modern name. It's previous name is unknown.
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Re: Current Capital Notes - ALPHA

Postby PTTG » Fri Nov 15, 2013 2:19 am

Cultures in SUCCESSION:

Imperial Culture:
The dominant culture of the Empire and, due to the nigh-global hedgimon it creates, much of the modern world. At the same time, it is so adaptable and flexible that what one Imperial considers to be a deadly offense could be a mild compliment to another on the other side of the Empire. This is, in fact, it's great strength and most serious weakness.

==Like modern and historic western culture in many basic shapes and in that it is quite varied, Imperial should be familiar to players, but fantastic. They should be able to play characters in it easily, simply by knowing a few simple facts.==

There are several subgroups of Imperial culture, some of which were long-ago assimilated outgroups, and some of which are fresh cultural devides:

- Old Imperial:
Modern Imperial culture dates back only about 230 years, with the foundation of the Lycurgus dynasty. The older empire dates back an additional 80 or 100 years.

- Capital:

- Kalhi Imperial:

- Rural Imperial:
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Re: Current Capital Notes - ALPHA

Postby PTTG » Fri Nov 15, 2013 2:22 am



Magic in capital is mystical, rare, and poorly understood. There are few effects that make permanent non-magical changes; for example, suppose a mage wished to create a deep well. Either the well would exist only for a few hours, while the spell lasted, or the well would appear normal and permanent, but retain a magical enchantment that might someday be dispelled or modified.

This is not true with destructive spells; it is far easier to destroy than to create. A spell might ignite a fire and burn down a home, leaving nothing but non-magical ash, but a new house created with magic will remain magical so long as it stands... even if one is merely assembling raw materials with the aid of magic.

There are exceptions to this; powerful mages can create permanent, real things from raw magical power, but this requires a great deal of energy.

Any magic event is unique; some say that this is because the position and nature of each enchantment, the flow of energy, the resonance and nature of wherever the magic is being worked, all vary from place to place, and the mage must each time bring these to balance anew. Others say that magic is poetry, or music, or a story... Though knowledge is important, invention and inspiration are the keys.


Some spells do not require substantial expenditure of personal power; these are "cantrips", or "minor magic" or "folk magic". These spells can be useful, but they are of little actual power, nor are they lasting. No cantrip can create a substantial change to the physical world, though occasionally they appear to do so. Very small items can be moved, but neither large changes in velocity, nor fine, detailed movement, are possible. The power of these spells is limited to about what someone might do bare-handed and unaided... though even that can do some critical action.

More substantial spells require some investment of one's personal power, permanently weakening oneself. However, only the most desperate kinds of magic demand substantial power; most spells are quite efficient.
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Re: Current Capital Notes - ALPHA

Postby PTTG » Fri Nov 15, 2013 2:27 am


Succession is set in the fantastically huge, industrious, wealthy city known only as Capital.

Capital is certainly the oldest city existing in the world, and may be one of the earliest. Because of this, its politics are more complex than those of most nations. It is an independent entity that currently dominates a continent-spanning empire. Its sewers and basements go down deeper, and its slums are darker, and its walls are taller, and its merchants wealthier, than any other city can boast.


Capital was in a state of carefully managed equilibrium. The Emperor was, to be frank, a figurehead with no real power. Nonetheless, noone could legitimately act against him, and the rival groups all knew that to act against any faction would put them at odds with the Emperor and thus, all other sides. This kept the peace- and protected corruption.



This city could very well be the first large settlement of mankind. Certainly it dates to before recorded history. However, it is only after lodestones had been understood that this city became what it is today.

About four thousand years ago, ancient mages first learned how to associate purified iron to lodestone. These scholars found that properly prepared iron needles could be floated on some material in a pool of oil, and then these would, given time, point toward the location of what is now the city of capital. The city at the time was a successful port, but much smaller than it is today.

The immense usefulness of lodestone navigation, combined with the great supply at Capital, made it inevitable that the greatest sailing cultures of the world would buy and sell in Capital. In the following centuries, Capital grew wealthy and populous.
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