I have created a few generators, usually just names, for fantasy RPGs using perchance.org. I recently found out they allow embedding. This generator in particular pulls together from a few different generators I made on perchance. It’s still barebones, but functional and perfectly useable if you need a quick place for adventurers to visit.
Pronounced Boll-weigh-ho, but often bastardized by other cultures as Boll-eh-gah or Boo-leh-go
The Boluego is a mass-produced shoulder fired weapon powered by 12 inch wands of reconstituted Litia. It looks like a cross between a quarterstaff and a rocket launcher where one end has been replaced by a fist sized crystal. It generally has a hand grip, a receiver, and a bolt for loading the wand into the Boluego. A single wand can power 10 shots, and the wand’s type determines the spell used. While the Boluego can be scaled up in power, the physical size of the weapon scales up as well, as does the amount of power necessary to operate it. A Boluego capable of firing a level 3 spell is the size of a cannon, and any Boluego larger than the original size requires a crew to operate it effectively.
Historical Notes: The Boluego made its first appearance at the Battle of Torre Arranes, and turned what should have been an unmitigated disaster into pyrrhic victory. The Battle of Torre Arranes became the bloodiest battle in written history -but it was a record that it wouldn’t hold for long.
Wherein I stroll down memory lane, and the origin of Rins. I’ll be adding some of the artwork of the various stages.
I feel absolutely ancient, realizing the first seeds of the world of Solethania began at the young age of twelve. Though honestly it probably began even earlier, when my sisters and I used to stay up way past our bedtime creating stories involving our myriad of stuffed animals while we laid in bed (the three of us shared a room until we had our own house in our teenage years, because we couldn’t afford anything else). We never got in trouble for staying up that late because my parents thought it was adorable.
At 12 years old I was writing into a raggedy little handheld notebook I carried with me. It was a simple, flip-over thing. I think they’re called memo books on Amazon these days. My mind was filled with the works of Brian Jacques, his Redwall series being something I was all but obsessed with (A couple years later it’d be Tolkien and Lord of the Rings. Followed by Golden Sun on the GBA) and I wanted my own world like that. So I made one. The concept of worldbuilding was utterly unknown to me at the time -nevermind actually writing it down- until I went off to college. What I did do however, was daydream about it, write stories (well, pieces of stories usually), or doodle an absolutely ridiculous amount of images.
So the world itself shifted with all the whims and whimsy a young boy could have. Then in college it became more grounded. More official. Rules were set in place. Then broken, rethought, and set in place again. Documentation, words like ‘demographics’ and ‘rules of magic’ started appearing. Rules of magic came, went, and came back more convoluted (or simplified) than ever before. And so it went, back and forth, the world slowly fleshing itself out, until very recently I created a landmass as a basis for a map I was perfectly happy with.
So. What has changed? What has stayed the same?
If there’s one thing that has stayed true through all 20 years is this absolute basic statement:
“It is a world of magic.”
I never, ever meant it like ‘It is a world that has magic in it’ or ‘magic is a rare or fading thing’. It has always been filled with the wildest things my imagination could think of. When The Fellowship of the Ring came out in theaters, two things stood out and stuck with me ever since: The deep beauty, mystery, and sense of loss of the Mines of Moria, and the utter grandeur and awe of the Argonath. To this day, it still fills me with that sense of wonder. I wanted that kind of thing in my world. I wanted that sense of history. I wanted the beautiful and the grand. But I didn’t want these grand things to be relics of an age long past whose methods of creation have disappeared. I wanted the world to be in an Age of Wonders. Where empires, wizards, architects, and armies of artisans were in the process of building these things. The great cities have not fallen to ruin or decay, but are instead at the height of their power. Legends, not unlike the real life American Davy Crockett, Daniel Boone, Jim Bowie, etc. walk unexplored lands and leave their indelible marks on history. Great armies, filled with wizards, and magic weapons and armor march toward glorious battle or certain doom. Solethania has always been, and always will be a deeply magical place. The rules of such magic has probably changed every other year since its inception. Currently it’s pretty static D&D rules, because I was running a D&D campaign in the world. So chances are I’m going to away from that. If only to avoid run-ins with WoTC should I ever try to actually publish a story (I’ll also need to rename a couple places on the map. Like Tabax…).
Another thing that hasn’t really changed is anthropomorphic animals existing in the world. It’s a long time holdover from the earliest days of making my first stab at my own world and populating it with animals like Brian Jacques did (that was like, 90% of my early work. Taking things I liked and mimicking them. I mean, I was literally 12 at the time…). That has faded mostly away, as the Wolfkind and Dragonkind are currently the only anthropomorphic species to officially exist in Solethania (D&D races are acceptable in campaigns, but I don’t consider them official, and any stories I write don’t have them.)
So… About Rins.
Rins is an anthro wolf character who has been around six-ish years at this point. You’ll see her in most of my social avatars and as of the last couple years, various commissioned artwork. Currently she’s in the site’s header banner.
The origin of the character Rins goes right along with the origin of Solethania itself. I felt the desire to draw the various characters in my head, but couldn’t. I knew I couldn’t draw humans well. So I drew animals with human features, because I thought it looked better than my attempts at humans. And it stuck. Also, believe it or not, I didn’t even know furries were a thing until college. I thought what I was doing was akin to cartoon art, a la Disney’s Robin Hood or the cover art of Redwall novels. And then high speed, full access internet happened. And that’s all I’m going to say about that.
Rins was not always a wolflike creature. She started out as a he. And an otter. Because I liked otters best at the age of 12. And also not named Rins. He didn’t have a name until I discovered I liked drawing the female figure more. It was confusing because I never really ‘set out’ to create a singular character. But when the dust settled after a few years, I did have a more or less consistent character. One who has followed me through the years till now, when I can afford to have actual, better artists draw her the way I see it in my head.
Some more images I’ve drawn through the years. Probably a ‘best of’ to be honest.
Now compare to a commissioned piece, like this. (Artist: Chessi) I much prefer to commission nowadays for some reason…
Oh, and speaking of change… Solethania wasn’t always Solethania. Originally the name of the world was Fraewan. Because Fraewan sounded super fantasy-ish to super young me. Solethania started out a small city state (ruled by a faction that had a magical rose symbol emblazoned on their armor). But Solethania was such a catchy name, and an absolute waste for such a small thing as a city state. There was a brief period of wishy-washy where it was the worlds name and where it wasn’t. And then it just was. And that’s the way it is. I may name one of the continents Fraewan though, as a callback or something.
I have a ton of written work, in various states of “brief sketchy outline” to “This is going to be an epic” and everything in-between. I put a lot of effort at some point in the past converting the handwritten pages to more legible print form. I don’t know what happened with those specific digital copies, so I’ll probably have to type them up again. I may put the ones that have anything remotely interesting in the Z-Scraps category in the wiki.
And that’s pretty much that. I just felt like meandering around the memory lane a bit.
With the invention and subsequent widespread use of more efficient golems replacing physical workers in agriculture, there has been a massive shift out of subsistence labor, as the agricultural output outstripped population growth and demand, creating large surpluses of food and manpower in an exceptionally short amount of time.
Kingdoms, guilds, and religious orders quickly and competitively vied for this new pool of manpower, and a strong and mobile middle class formed.
Kingdoms were able to create and maintain standing armies and expand their influence. Guilds were able to begin a process not unlike industrialization (standardization of crafting, organized exploration and adventuring, etc.), and the religious orders were able to expand and begin educating the general populous in scientific/magic theory, knowledge, and philosophical thought.
Despite the massive changes and societal upheaval this brought, many things remained the same. Feudalistic society grew more entrenched, as only the nobility and religious orders owned land -the very land the golems (that only the wealthy can truly afford) now work that provide the food for the populous. And the new and powerful standing armies worked well to prevent and quell revolts or rebellions against the established order.
I decided to drop the global population down to a more manageable 300 million. Mostly because I didn’t want so many middling to large up and coming cities scattered about everywhere. While contemplating this, I also decided I wasn’t a fan of the Wizard demographic level distribution (original post here). There were just too many low level wizards and not enough mid level ones to my taste. So I gave it some thought. I decided that you aren’t really a true Wizard until you’ve mastered some iconic spells, and had some time to truly get into your chosen Tradition (I arbitrarily chose level 3). Levels 1-2 are merely Apprentice Wizards, going through their formal training and education.
With the help of an old friend from college, I now have a new Wizard Demographic by Level table:
How this was achieved was by basing it on current real world higher academic tiers. 1-2 would be those going into college/university. 3-6 would be those with a Bachelor’s. 6-10 would be those with a Masters. 10-20 would be those with at least one Doctorate. The math was calculated using general pop statistics (levels 3-6), slightly modified Chi-Squared distribution (6-10), and straight Chi-Squared distribution(10-20). I do think this is a much closer approximation to what an actual global academia of Wizards and their power would be like population wise.
As a minor aside, the population of the United States in 2016 was 323.4 million, which I think lends itself nicely to do some comparisons. Namely, according to the 2016 Bureau of Labor Statistics, all Protective Service Occupations (law enforcement, firefighters, lifeguards, animal control, security guards, etc.) only make up about 1.1% of the population of the United States. So if you were wondering how common a Wizard would actually be, that’d be the closest comparison.
Now, due to the prevalence of higher level wizards (never mind all the other spellcasters in the world…), I don’t think a traditional coinage system would really hold any weight anymore. When you can just magic up or transmute metals and materials, raw materials are going to lose their value pretty quickly. So what can replace it?
My idea is the currency of Solethania, called the Litia. The Litia is a coin that contains a specific amount of magical power. That is, it is essentially a magic battery. A spellcaster isn’t going to want to waste a spell slot (expend the effort) for a lot of ‘mundane’ magical work. So they can just use one of those instead. I figure one coin is worth either a cantrip or lvl 1 spell worth of ‘pure’ magic (I haven’t decided). A wizard can then either recharge it later, or trade it off to someone else. Different levels of magic give it different levels of worth.
In D&D coinage terms:
|Part Full||1 Silver|
|Mostly Full||1 Electrum|
Now, considering that what would traditionally be the ‘slave class’ of D&D worlds has been replaced by non-sentient magic powered golems, it’s a small leap to make them essentially rechargeable with Litia. Since that may get rather expensive for most to afford, it is likely only nobility or upper class that can afford them -perpetuating and strengthening the power of a feudalistic system of governance throughout the world as they would be ‘leased’ to the serfs under them.
Current Ruler: King Cuan the Sage (Age 18) of House Kaeivar, son of the late King Conghalach.
- House Kaeivar, led by King Cuan the Sage (Age 18), son of King Conghalach, and has no children.
- House Celos, led by Countess Féthnat (Age 39) daughter of Count Ruairí. Her two children are Flann and Aodhamair (Ages 8 and 1).
- House Betan, led by Countess Sadhbh (Age 25), daughter of Count Dubhán. Her only child is Niall (Age 6).
- House Alphus, led by Duke Feichín (Age 12), son of Duke Uaithne.
- House Gammris, led by Count Eachaidh (Age 20), son of Count Deaglán, He has no children.
- House Nautus, is led by Count Affraic (Age 34), Son of Countess Brónach. His two children are Cúmhaighe and Éibhear (Ages 12 and 10)
List of major Cities and Towns:
- Aspenreach (pop: 6800). Seat of House Kaeivar
- Abercaster (pop: 4104). Seat of House Celos
- Burnmouth (pop: 1828). Seat of House Nautus
- Kyleceter (pop: 4478). Seat of House Gammris
- Blackdhu (pop: 1980). Seat of House Betan
- Ecclesfoss (pop: 2583). Seat of House Alphus
- Monument of Caitlín (820 years standing). Located in Abercaster.
- Colossus of Aislin (776 years standing). Located in Burnmouth.
- Palace of Toirleach (766 years standing). Located in Aspenreach.
- Fortress of Conchubhar (224 years standing). Located in Blackdhu.
- Fortress of Aoibheann (39 years standing). Located in Kyleceter.
- Statue of Meidhbhín (stood for 56 years). Located near Abercaster.
- Library of Umos(stood 460 years, destroyed by arson). Located in Kyleceter.
- Monument of Eachann (stood 389 years, destroyed by earthquake). Located near Blackdhu.
- Tower of Eibhlín (stood 44 years, destroyed by warfare). Located near Aspenreach.
- Lighthouse of Cliodhna (stood 820 years, destroyed in an uprising). Located on an island near Aspenreach.
- Arch of Muireann (stood 511 years, abandoned). Located near Ecclesfoss.
- Castle of Seachnasach (stood 259 years, destroyed by sabotage). Located near Burnmouth.
- Fortress of Caitlín (lasted 448 years, destroyed in war). Located between Aspenreach and Ecclesfoss.
- Monument of Raghnailt (stood 217 years, destroyed in an uprising). Located near Aspenreach.
- Citadel of Feichín (lasted 331 years, destroyed by lightning). Located near Ecclesfoss.
- Arch of Damháin (stood 462 years, abandoned and crumbling). Located near Kyleceter.
- Palace of Nóirín (lasted 81 years, until destroyed by witchcraft). Located near Blackdhu.
Exports: Iron, Copper, Timber
Imports: Cotton, Hemp, Precious Crystal
Local Adventuring Group(s): The Aspensong, Cainneach’s Crew
Over eight hundred years old, Aspenreach is a human town ruled by King Cuan the Sage of House Kaeivar. The buildings and walls are formed of a white stone, carved of an ancient and ornate stonework. In the center of town is a high quality fountain, with five tigers carved standing alongside its outer rim. The mighty and ancient palace of Toirleach rises slightly above the town to the west.
Roughly six hundred years old, Ecclesfoss is a human town ruled by House Alphus, and run by the Fighter Aibhinn, a local noblewoman. Its buildings and walls are made up of a stark and bare wood. Nestled into the east of town is a dynamic silver statue of an Earl, depicted teaching to the town elders.
Roughly three hundred years old, Burnmouth is a human town ruled by the sorcerer Count Affraic, Patriarch of House Nautus. It is nestled deep in the forest at the foot of the mountains. Its buildings and walls are built from a soft local wood, giving it a wild, but comfortable feel. Somewhat hidden away in the north of town is an onyx fountain made with superior skill of a bear sitting at the center of the fountain, watching the town with an expression of deep sadness. The Colossus of Aislin juts out from the mountains to the east.
Roughly five hundred years old, Abercaster is a human town ruled by House Celos, and run by the Ranger Orla, also a noblewoman of the House. Abercaster’s buildings and walls are formed of a pricey brown clay, and in the center of town is a poetic brass fountain with two brass lions standing in its center. The Monument of Caitlín is located on the outskirts of town.
Roughly six hundred years old, Kyleceter is a human town ruled by the wizard Eachaidh, Leader of house Gammris. Its buildings and walls are raised up from a simple and local white clay. Placed in the center of town is a high quality beech statue of an ancient king, depicted watching a fox. The Fortress of Aoibheann is the newest major addition to Kyleceter, and has been carefully integrated into the town’s defensive systems.
Nearly eight hundred years old, this venerable old human town is ruled by the Rogue Sadhbh, Countess and leader of House Batan. The buildings and walls are a strong, but light wood. Just outside town to the east, an ancient and dynamic limestone fountain of six lions stands near a small river. Fortress of Conchubhar is located nearby, its squat imposing form standing at odds with the town and forest surroundings.
In Solethania, Dragons, Lizardmen, Dragonkind, and Kobolds are all ‘Dragonkind’ and are modeled after bee hives/ant colonies. These Dragonkind colonies are called Clans. The only true Dragon is the Queen, always female. They’re capable of laying thousands of small unfertilized eggs in a very short amount of time (and will do so once every six months or so), eggs that will always hatch into kobolds, dragonborn, lizardfolk, and wyverns. She will lay one fertilized egg early in her life that will remain dormant and hatch as a new Dragon Queen immediately upon her death.
Kobolds are the lowest rung of the Dragonkind ladder. Their lives are short even if they make it to old age, and they rarely do. They’re the grunts, servants, bodyguards, and anything dangerous will likely have them in the middle of it. A Kobold will always gladly do whatever its master (any Dragonkind of its color not another Kobold) desires gleefully even if it means immediate death.
Dragonborn are Kobold wranglers. They translate the plans and goals of the Queen into actions. They see to the care and growth of to the small cadre of Kobolds placed under their control. In war, they are the front line officers. Dragonborn tend to be strong sorcerers, wielding the power of the Queen’s bloodline.
Lizardfolk are the administrators. Their emotions seem distant and alien even within the Clan. They create the overarching plan of the hive based on the will of the Queen. They see to and coordinate the logistics and resource management of the entire clan, ensuring the whole thing runs smoothly and efficiently. Their sheer emotionless pragmatism is what keeps the Clan running like a well oiled machine.
Wyverns are the elite bodyguard of the Queen. There’s rarely more than a dozen in the largest of Clans, the average is closer to three or four. Their entire existence is built around protecting the Queen, and they are the last line of defense before the Queen herself. Many adventurers have mistaken Wyverns for Dragons, and most those who claimed to have ‘Killed a Dragon’ have only killed a Wyvern.
While all members of the Clan are capable of complete autonomy on their own outside the Clan, they are literally incapable of knowingly going against the will of the Queen, and by extension, the Clan. I will likely go into Dragonkind clan society and cultures in another post.
I upgraded WordPress to 5.0, and added TLS/SSL (https) to the site, just to be more ‘professional’. I do actually have some professionally built branding I’m working on too that is in the works and should be finished soon. The main purpose of this post is to test out the new features and see how things look with the new text editor.
I was curious about how many wizards of each level exist in the world of Solethania. I know that there is a total population of 500 million (this encompasses all sentient life born from the Material Plane). Of whom only 7.5 million (1.5%) are both capable of, and desire to become, a Wizard.
Evenly distributing the levels 1-20 leaves an absolutely absurd number of level 20 Wizards (375,000). And I wanted to have high level (10+) wizards to be much rarer than lower level ones. So I decided it should probably be done with exponential decay. Pria Tama’s player was kind enough to calculate this out for me, because I am not very good at math. I chose to end the calculation with one Level 17 wizard, because that’s the first level that can cast 9th Level spells, and I arbitrarily chose to have only one Level 17, 18,19, and 20 Wizard currently existing in Solethania.
Honestly I think only Wizards, Fighters, and possibly Clerics can really be calculated this way, because of the nature of how other classes gain their powers and abilities. Maybe Rangers too, if I go by the number of wilderness explorers/mountain men of the early United States as a subset of the total population.
The number of Wizards per level in the world of Solethania:
|Level 1||4,584,551||Can cast 1st level spells|
|Level 3||682,164||Can cast 2nd level spells|
|Level 5||95,132||Can cast 3rd level spells|
|Level 7||13,267||Can cast 4th level spells|
|Level 9||1,850||Can cast 5th level spells|
|Level 11||258||Can cast 6th level spells|
|Level 13||36||Can cast 7th level spells|
|Level 15||5||Can cast 8th level spells|
|Level 17||1||Can cast 9th level spells|
I converted my Solethania World Map into this beautiful thing using Wonderdraft and I couldn’t be happier.
I mean, just look at this thing. The current campaign, Tales of the Past is taking place in Marcinia. Click on the image to get the full size.
The below was an old writing exercise I used to get a feel for how I want magic to be in my world, as well as to try out a couple different things. It’s stream of consciousness with no editing. But hey, I need to make a long post…
The wind howled across the strait, giant waves crashed over ice and ship alike as the two frigates engaged in furious battle, against each other and the storm. Balls of flame, ice, lightning and iron exploded from the mouths of angry canons. Mages held on to what they could as they hurled their spells. Men screamed as balls of magical ice exploded into clouds of shrapnel upon the masts, and fires were extinguished almost as they started by storm and sailor alike. The deafening chaos of man was drowned out by the vengeance of nature as the frigates hurtled headlong across the seas, locked in the fight for their lives.
“Wanted: Young, magically ept fellows not over eighteen. Must be a Lightrider, willing to risk death or disfigurement daily. Orphans preferred”
~A recruitment ad for the Lightning Express, the fastest method of getting documents from one end of the Crystal Empire to the other. It lasted three years and was considered one of the most dangerous jobs in the world. Lightriders can travel great distances in incredibly short amounts of time, by literally becoming lightning. The average lifespan of a Lightrider is less than six years after learning how to do it.
It were a dusty, hot summer morn. Fields was dried up an’ crackin. Ain’t had no water fer th’ crops in nigh on three months. Farmhands was doin’ wut they could, but after th’ local crick dried up, twas nuthin’ to be done. Erry day, we’d walk to th’ edge of town, hopin’ to see ‘em comin’. That day were no different. ‘Sept we could see it. As th’ sun were peekin’ over th’ old oaks behin’ us off’n th’ distance could see the barest speck of cloud. And we knew, today were th’ day. Sho ‘nuff, half hour later he arrived. They’s called Irrigators. Bringer’s of th’ storms. When we get times like these, wit no water, Th’ villages gets together an’ purchases th’ services of th’ Irrigators. They summon up water from th’ ocean an‘ guide her here up to thousan’ miles. Takes weeks it does. They’s a bunch of ‘em, spread out across the countryside, guidin’ in th’ storms. When he reached th’ center o’ the village he stopped, drew a circle aroun’ himself in th’ dirt, an’ started dancin’. He didn’t stop dancin’ till th’ clouds was o’erhead ‘n rain was comin’ down in sheets. We all ran inside o’course, it came down so heavy we couldn’t even see him out thar. When th’ rain stopped, he were gone. Twas expected I suppose, bringin’ rain is wut they do. Crops was good after that.
He was alone, alone on a mountain in the middle of nowhere, a week and a half from the nearest settlement. And he was fine with that. In fact, he wasn’t the kind of person to think about it at all anymore. He existed solely for a single purpose. He had a fist sized magical gem that pointed him in the direction of the nearest deposit of Corundum and he’d been mining it for years. The tunnels he had dug into the mountain were labyrinthine due to the single mindedness of his digging. He didn’t sleep, didn’t rest. There was no flesh on his bones, but a soft green light in roughly the shape of his muscles would flare up wherever he moved a body part, as if they were the muscles now. They may have been. He didn’t care. His skull was carved with faintly glowing runes, and in his eye sockets were two gems, glowing a sickly green. He wore no clothing to hide his bones. All he cared about was his mission as he pried the last piece of crystal he needed from the rock. He clasped it in his hands of bone and scurried out of the tunnel. There was a single path, going up the mountainside. It was well worn. He followed it up, like he always did, in his slow undead shuffle, each step sending shimmers of green light across nonexistent muscle groups. The destination was a small, smooth tower, that was slanted at a peculiar 35 degree angle. He had built it, when he first arrived, magically fusing the solid rock of the mountain together into this structure. There was a small door leading into the tower and he let himself in, almost with reverence. There was nothing inside, it was just a hollow tube. But the walls and floor were covered in runes of all shapes and sizes, carefully etched into the rock over the course of a few years. The skeleton set himself down in the center of the room, and opened his fingers. He brought the crystal close to his face and whispered his spell and clenched his fist tightly. The crystal became powder, one that he used to carefully finish tracing the last segments of runes on the floor. The powder melted into the rock, and he was done. Well almost done. He looked at his arm, there were twelve runes on there, and all but one glowed faintly. He touched the blank one, and whispered a word. The rune flared up brightly, and then dimmed like the others. He sat down in the exact center of the floor, and began chanting. A dagger of light appeared in front of him. He reach out and grabbed it, and as the light began searing the bones in his hand, he drove the dagger into his skull. There was a flicker as the lights in his eyes went out, and then the entire room exploded with magic