Shadowfire Summer Camp 2023
The aurochs were massive herd animals that were domesticated during the early years of Age of Exultancy. The Auroch horned skull has become a symbol strength and sacrifice for the common good across the Protectorates.
The ice bergs farmed from the Sea of Black Ice by the icerunners guild and sold to the markets at the Gleaming City
Those who work on the many ships owned by the Chambers of the Icerunners Guild are collectively called Breakers.
Icewardens are the ships of the Icerunners Guild. They are huge ocean going ships made from iron plating strong enough to slice through the Sea of Black Ice
Isulo - harbour masters
The most powerful individuals across The Icerunners Guild network are the harbour masters, known collectively as the Isulo. These individuals are employed by the Chambers of the guild to control access to the various ports that the guild operates in.
Jitters and time quakes
Seismic activity across Shadowfire can trigger unwanted and uncontrolled manifestations of magic, which can have impacts both great and small.
The failed rebellion at Kaltstad was aimed at securing independence for the workers of the ice-bound city from the control of the Protectorates
The Tokari specialised in distance messaging through the use of kites and other wind-powered instruments.
Non verbal sign language used by the clans to communicate in the cold storms upon the Sea of Black Ice
The Icerunners Guild was founded by a particularly independent and entrepreneurial member of the Returned, who became known as the First Breaker
Ravac, the Nibbler
Ravac works the beaches and bars at Camp Thrifty, spying on all and sundry and selling the truths or rumours he gleans for coin or favours. His secretive ways mask as even darker loyalty to the cult of the Devourer
The heavily fortified port and naval base owned and run by the Icerunner's Guild, and the primary headquarters for its global operations
A shardfall is the term used to describe the uncommon event of a meteor falling from the Nightbridge. They bring shockwaves of magical energy and the resulting crater will be a highly sought after boon.
Skelters are small furry tentacled creatures that are native to the coastal rocks around the harbour at Runners End and a popular pet kept by the members of the Icerunners Guild
The First breaker and Shadowseer seek information from an ancestor spirit
The Icerunners Guild
The powerful mercantile organisation whose power challenges that of the nations of the world. They control the lucrative ocean trade routes known as the Silver Reaches and the Golden Tides that stretch from the Protectorates to the Gleaming City
Creative GoalsMy primary creative goal is to detail out aspects of the world that will provide colour and flavour to the grand vistas and world shakers that I have tended to focus on in the past. These will be characters that live within the world and are affected by it. They may be your everyday people who simply want to live their lives, or those aspiring for great and terrible things. It may be the stories they tell each other to make sense of the fractured magics and season-less times they live in. It may involve the myths and beliefs that drive them, or that they seek escape from. What follows is a creative ramble, giving me space to fill as I respond to the prompts provided. I have provided some links to existing articles which may become launchpads for deeper exploration.
PowerPower and its exchange, lies at the heart of Shadowfire. The very Blood of the earth was powered by the Elder Gods, and all things have sprung from it. The scars of the are a result of the abuse of power by those long gone. These scars show themselves in the fervour of the Protectorates as they seek to reconquer lands lost during The Destruction. The lands that are equally defended by the Motu who have called them home ever since. It is also seen in the ever flowing machinations of the Lords of Fire and the many who flock to them in The Gleaming City as they jostle against each other for prestige. Power in Shadowfire can be literal and tangible, magical or mundane. It can be the power to create, preserve or destroy. This kind of power relies on domination and subversion, victory and defeat. The other kind of power is social, political or economic. These types of power rely on agreement, compromise or subterfuge and it can be borrowed, bequeathed or stolen. Who are the seekers of power? How do they seek it, or seek to be free of it? How do they hide or protect themselves from it? How do the strong exercise it or restrain themselves from abusing it? Who takes advantage of power conflicts at the edges through profiteering or salvage? And underneath it all, what deeper and more insidious conflicts lie dormant? Those that have simmered since the very creation of the world and may threaten to consume all?
Some questions for Summer Camp...
- What are the factions within the Uferbrech Goblins? How are they aligned or at odds?
- How is the conflict between the Faithful and Unbounded factions within the Church of the impacting the wars?
- Who are the other Lord Protectors, and how do they seek to challenge Lord Akron?
- What powers have their ancestors shared with the Spirit Seers of the Uferbech goblins?
- what are the original Lords of Fire doing about the rise of Impetine?
- How is The Icerunners Guild seeking to undermine the Merchantry of the Torrent?
- What do the Lords of Fire think about the upstart Protectorates?
- Is the Cult of the Devourer ready to reveal itself?
- Will Rue du Col's reforms at Sudengard spread further?
- When will the Dead Lord Kholkosi be ready to unleash his hordes of Soulhusks?
- Will the treasure hunters at Camp Thrifty or the Shatterbright uncover something that will upset the balance of power?
FrontierThere are many frontiers across Shadowfire - from the dark depths beneath the , to the fractured expanse of The Desolation of Ghul Drazul, where time itself is in flux. There is the strangeness of The Ferment, ruled over by the Spore Minds, or the ruins beneath the Uferbrech Sea where the great gyre protects the secrets of ancients. These are the places of mystery that beckon exploration and hide secrets which could destroy the very beliefs of those look for them. There are the social frontiers too. The Protectorates are but two generations returned from their otherworldly exile, and traditions that have lasted thousands of years are now in flux. The newest Lord Protector seeks to end the wares against the goblin kin, and challenge the hegemony of the Church of the Faceless, and the signs of rebellion are spreading. And across the other side of the world, for the first time since The Mortugurra Incursion, one of the Lords of Fire has been killed, and a commoner, Impetine has risen to take their place. There are also the frontiers of thought and invention. There is the cultural creativity that is arising as the more adventurous among the Motu and Protectorates are combining ancient tech salvaged from Destruction with the ancestral magics of the Coral Glass weavers, or learning new musical forms from each other. There are even those places deep in the deserts where Scrappers escaped from the Stoneforged Assembly and the Soulhusk Chimeras experiment with new forms of life and expression.
Some questions for Summer Camp...
- How will the invention of Bittybells challenge the College of Tempus who have controlled the very rhythm of life within the Protectorates?
- What other discoveries await as the Academics of the Protectorates and the Spiritseers of the Motu learn from each other?
- How will the cultural expressions of the Soulhusk Chimeras manifest in the deep deserts?
- What secrets are the Lords of Fire protecting beneath the Shatterbright?
- What has the greed of the Protectorates awoken in the depths of The Mines of Koigua?
- Will the Masked Grace reveal what she has learned in the archives of The Academy?
- What memories await to be discovered in the ancient minds of the Scrappers or the ghosts of the Motu's ancestors?
- What awaits to be discovered across the wide expanse of The Nightbridge?
RelicsEvery inch of the world is built upon the ruins of the ancient civilisation that was destroyed at the end of the Age of Ascendency in what the Reutrned know as the Destruction. For those cultures that lived and evolve through the age of Shadowfire, the artafacts of the history have crumbled into myth. But The Returned of the Protectorates have brought much salvaged technology and preserved history with them from their exile in Refuge. Much has been lost, but relics remain. The ruins of Old Lafaelle lie beneath the Uferbrech Sea, and ancient magics have been unearthed in the Kyroshi Pit in the Shatterbright. The Academy holds documents that recount the greatest discoveries of the Ascendency, and the heroism of The Cabal. The Motu have their Moji, those objects imbued with the memories and very souls of their ancestors. And followers of ancient Godlings seek artefacts of power to resurrect their idols.
Some questions for Summer Camp...
- Where have the stolen moji ended up within the Protectorates? How are their powers manifesting there? Who seeks them back?
- Why is the mysterious owner of The Dart at Camp Thrifty buying up the artefacts sold in the markets and seeking to control all exploration of The Uferbrech Gyre?
- Why do the Faceless seek invitation to Kyroshi's mansion - the only known Scurasphere to have survived the Destruction?
- How does one get out of a contract signed with a bonescribe?
- What objects hold the power behind the Tithe Binding that the resistance seeks to undo across the Stone-sky?
- What have the denizens of The Tangled Fathoms discovered in the depths?
CommunicationThe cultures of Shadowfire have evolved over millenia since the Destruction. For much of that time that hav e lived in isolation from each other, and the knowledge of the ancients has devolved into myth that has generated its own realities. They each tell stories, of themselves and others. They explain the lack of seasons in different ways, and they each talk in different tongues. Some, like The Returned or the Scrappers, bring technology from before the Destruction that enables them to record and share the past with each other. The goblins of the Uferbrech Sea communciate with each other and the ghosts of their dead through song, story, craft and dance. The Sporeminds of Glimmertown send out clouds of spores and emotions, while the Lords of Fire communicate through control and subservience. As these cultures collide, their methods of communication, and the things they communicate about are changing. This is not a matter of niceties. The way magic works in Shadowfire where belief controls reality and can manifest as Godlings, communication is the power that can destroy, or save the world.
Some questions for Summer Camp...
- What is recorded on the ancient crystals held in the library at ?
- How did the flying monks of the Motu turn from couriers to feared warriors?
- Can any revive the ancient Ghosting networks?
- How do the Seers of the Motu interpret the ramblings of their ancestors who have lost their minds?
- How is the use of spore spray being used to trade with and learn from the spore minds of Glimmertown?
- How do the many factions coordinate their diplomacy and spy networks across the globe?
- what are the myths and anecdotes that people have where misunderstandings and lies are transformed into new truths?
- How do the powers run their propaganda to channel and control the beliefs - and manifested Godlings - of their citizens?