A World, Asunder
A History, Entwined
At the beginning of time, the World was made up of two distinct parts, connected by dozens of one-way portals and the Great Bridge at Mantol-Derith: the Overworld, Arcadia, where Man and Beast came to power; and the Underdark, the Abyss, from which depths the Underkin arose to destroy and plunder all that Man held dear. After many hard-fought wars between the Light and the Dark, the Light beat back the Underkin hordes and claimed the upper reaches of the Abyss as yet another Realm of Man. For several hundred years, Man and his Kin colonized the Underdark, sending both his best and his worst down into the rich deeps, establishing both grand colonies and grand prisons throughout the endless caverns.
A Bridge, Broken
Then, over one thousand years ago, the strongest denizens of the Abyss began an endless march to reclaim that which Man stole. The previous wars with the Underkin were as light skirmishes to what followed; it was only the action of the last great Sorcerer King, Terhn the Unchained, which stopped the influx of Underkin from succeeding in their invasion of the Overworld – and even then, it was too late to save the Empire. Erith, with the power of a thousand blood sacrifices behind him, sundered the connection between the Abyss and Arcadia, and the Great Bridge fell silent. Even now, Man commits his departed to the Dark to maintain the Seal of the Dead for fear of what may come from beneath.
A Party, Hired
A few weeks ago, you and your compatriots were hired by Sentinel Trefan Hornswather of the Lionshield Cloister, a religious order which worships the God of Commerce by operating an extensive merchant company and extolling the virtues of a free market. The Lionshields have been having trouble in the small mining town of Phandalin; the trade routes in to town have become frequent targets of Underkin bandits. In return for clearing the trade routes, the Lionshields have promised you each fifty pieces of gold. Now, you are traveling with a full cart of goods to be delivered to one Gundred Rockseeker at Barthen’s Provisions in Phandalin in an attempt to lure out the bandits. It’s time for the hunter to become the hunted…
A Conjunction, Unforeseen
For the past few days, slight earthquakes have shaken the ground you have trod upon, and strange dreams have begun haunting your sleep. Unbeknownst to you, these are just the first signs of the coming Conjunction – an event spoken of in modern religions as beginning the final battle between Light and Dark, but always occurring some nebulous time in the future. But the time of the Conjunction is nigh, and what once was broken shall be made whole again.
All players start at Level One. The Drow Elf and Deep Gnome subraces are not allowed for Player Characters, and neither is the Undercommon language. The ancient language of the Empire of Man, Arcaden, can be learnt, but its use mirrors that of Latin in modern-day Earth: a forgotten tongue now only used by scholars of history and whose words are borrowed to name objects of Science and Magic.
When creating attributes, players roll 4d6 (dropping the lowest die) six times and then assign the sum of those rolls to their six attributes. After rolling, if a player wishes they may either keep their rolled attributes or use a point buy with a 27 point budget to spread across their attributes and the following attribute costs:
All players at level one start with one extra feat, chosen by the player.
The Variant Human stats found in the Dungeon Master’s Guide is not allowed.