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[Non-WoW] Campaign Setting
#1
Hey all, I was just working on a alternate history/steam punk campaign setting, and I wanted some feedback as to how it sounded. Its written in story form, as it is supposed to be an intro to a story.



There has always been magic in the world. Since the beginning of time, it was been that way. The ancient Druids and Egyptians were first, and they cultivated it, and harvested the magic for their own use. Next the Greeks soon discovered the way to manipulate the magical ley lines that ran through the entire planet, which were the source of all magic in the world. The societies flourished, and soon 5 types of magic became dominant above all others. As complicated as they are, they remain simple in description.
First are the green mages. Wardens of the environment, they are. It is rumored that the druids of Britain were the first ones to fully embrace the magic. They have control over all of nature, be it plants or storms. Green mages are considered to be some of the more benevolent mages of the Five Arts.
Then came the Red Mages of Ra. The Egyptians were first to practice this Art. The Red Mages have control over some of the greater elements of the world, namely of fire and earth. They are brutish spell casters, often some of the more competitive as well. The Red Mages, none-the-less are honorable individuals.
The Blue Mages of Crete came next. They were masters of the ocean, and of the powers of the wind. Blue mages are just like the winds, unpredictable. Blue mages are often the most cunning, or the most intelligent mages of all the Five Arts.
Even in magic, there is always opposition. During the Crusades, there came to be two opposing forces of magic that came into play, the magic of the Black Mages of Babylon, and the White Mages of the Rose. The White Mages were masters of all sorts of spells dealing with True Arcane, as well as enchantments, and some conjures. Black Mages however were more known for their mastery of necromancy. They had the power to not only inflict their enemies with all manner of plagues, diseases, and poisons, but they had the ability to raise them back to life, after their grim spells had taken effect.
All the mages wield their magic, through an ability simply called The Gift. The Gift does not come to all people, as can be expected, only to a rare few. No one knows why, or how. Anyone with The Gift is usually gathered up, and brought to one of the many colleges across Europe, to better define their skills.
However, all that was to change. During the 15th and 16th century, there came a man, who changed everything. The man, of course, had no Gift whatsoever, but he still wanted to partake in the vast powers of the magical ley-lines. The man became an inventor, creating objects that manipulated the ley lines, into basically mimicking the Mage’s powers. To say that they were as great as the mage’s powers, would be ignorance, but it would also be ignorance to say that they were something to be ignored. That man was Leonardo da Vinci, and he was the first recorded Artificer. Numerous others followed his works and teachings, correcting it as they went along, such notable people such as Galileo, and Sir Isaac Newton. Numerous High Arcanists found these men, and others to be committing an abomination against the beauty of Magic, and several were in fact punished for it.
From the 17th and the 18th Century, increased persecution against the Artificers, forced them to migrate to the Americas, where Artificers became a dominant factor of life, the supreme symbol of industrialization. Currently, only America and Russia are countries were artificers reign supreme, and are encouraged, funded, and allowed. Almost all other areas in the world, either discourage the practice, or ban it outright. These laws have been the cause of several wars throughout the history of the world. Now everything seems to be at a steady stand-still. America, and Russia seem content to ignore the rest of the world, and they are just as content to ignore them back.
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#2
Interesting. I always do like semi-historical settings, and modern fantasy. Though a few notes.

1. The magic system follows generally the same principles of Magic the Gathering. Intentional are not.

2. The Druids of Britian, well, Druidic beliefs orginated with the Celts that covered a large portion of europe. Some of which crossed over to England and spread their pratices. Also, historically, Druids were not the nature loving magic users they are portrayed as in alot of modern fantasy. There is good evidence that many groups which included Druids participated in bloody sacrifice, and went along with tribes who often slaughtered eachother back and forth for landrights. I would suggest going back a doing research to better repersent them. The more actual historical fact you can tie into the magical setting, the better game it would become. Also, if Green uses storms, then they are using the powers of Wind mages, no?

Here is a suggestion for green mages. Green is the color of life, and those who practice its powers influence life directly. They do this because while Ley Lines course through the physical world and form places of power, Ley Lines also flow through animals and plants, and form creatures and people of power. A lizard may be the nexus of many Ley Lines and become a dragon, a person may be a nexus and become a great hero. The people who truely mastered this art were the people of the East. They call themselves Taoists. They can influence the life into themselves to grant great physical abilities, or hinder it in others even to the point of extinguishing the flow of magic all togeather in a person.

3. Black Magic, though perhapps it rose up proment in the Crusades, it needs a source. Here is an idea. Black Magic first originated in the Indus river valley with the rise of the first civilization there. It was the power to speak with and influence spirits. As it progressed the most powerful could even return a spirit to its body, though only in a limited form. When Islam invaded India in the 1200's the knowledge was discovered and spread throughout the Muslim empire. They of course did not call it black, and it was used to communicate with spirits and pention their aid, often to miraculous effect. It was also discovered that like the Ley Lines that run through living things, lines of power run through the world of the dead. When this new power was used against the Christians of Europe and in Byzantium, they developed a counter to it. White magic. While Black magic can summons visions of death and fear, White magic an inspire and enhance its troops. While Black magic can damage the life force of others, atophying limbs and bone, White magic can bolster and heal. White magic gains its power independent of Ley Lines, many claim it comes from God himself, or some other divine source. For this reason White Mages care little for the holy and sacred places of others, and often destroy them instead of capturing to limit the power of their enemies.

Hmm. sorry, this is already getting rather long. I just enjoy making worlds. Anyways some things to think on...oh, Red Mages should be from Persia, the place were Zoroastrianism originated. They are the most tied to Ley Lines and places of power. Egpyt can have a magic based on Astrology. Blue magic originated from Alantis, the fabled source of magical learning. That is why its practicioners believe they are the "pureist" mages. Ect..ect..
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#3
I did notice the Magic: The Gathering similarities, and I tried to still keep things different. Green magic is alot of brute force (at least my deck was), which in the campaign, it basically replaces druids, and so on.
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