On the Heroes of the Arengold Forest, By Noven Pennoclenture
Introduction: What is a Hero?For the purposes of this guide, a concrete definition of "hero" must be achieved. For many tales, a "hero" is one whose heart is in the right place. Who adapts to a situation by using their virtues. They do not always succeed, but they always learn, and always benefit the world at large.
This is not the definition that this guide will be using.
For this guide, a "hero" is any individual with nearly limitless potential. Empowered by their own fate, they are capable of above-average combat potential and fantastic works of art. Other words for "hero" commonly used by villages include "Filli-Blessed" and "World Painters."
Heroes are common in every single tribe and village. It is rare that a village does not have at least one hero in it. Heroes are critical for the survival of any tribe, as they are the first to be sent after major threats. They are critical for avoiding loss of life.
A hero with malicious personality traits is deadly. They can perform feats of great strength, but only do so for themselves. A very dangerous prospect, which is why a hero will be referred to as a "villain" if they have a personality that would cause them to be a danger to their surroundings.
Heroic ArchetypesEvery hero is unique. However, there are some notable patterns amongst heroes of legend. I will be using standard Jörreg nomenclature for many of these.
The Bard is a huge asset to every village. They have dedicated themselves so closely to the art of song or dance that they can weave magic from creation. Filli endorses these magicians fully, and thus they have some of the greatest abilites on the planet. Every single soul in the Arengold Forest has the potential to become a bard. Human Bards have weaved magic to hypnotize tribes. Gnome Bards are brought to towns to entertain and teach children. They are everywhere, by far the most common hero.
The Fighter is perhaps the most commonplace of the heroes, if the Bard is ignored. They have incredible prowess with their weapons and tend to use fighting as an art form by itself. These heroes are especially common in Human and Orc tribes, where wartime often breeds powerful warriors far more capable than any standard artist.
The Druid may be the next most common. This hero has embraced the strength of the Arengold Forest. They use aspects of every god in order to empower their magic. This allows them mastery over both animal and plant, a feat no other heroic pattern can even consider. Exceptionally common in smaller villages, where the druid tends to be the leader.
The Ranger is a combination of Druid and Fighter, able to harness some power of nature but using it for offensive means. Most Rangers are identifiable by an animal ally which listens to their every command. Every race has Rangers, as every race relies on hunters. Notably, the Grippli race is almost exclusively made of Rangers, and their rangers are perhaps the best of the entire forest.
The Cleric is an incredible artist who directly worships a god, rather than the whole pantheon. These clerics serve as the voice of the god, as well as performing rather intensive rituals for said god. They are trusted by all, but their healing magic can make them a sought-after prize for non-just individuals. Cleric heroes are popular amongst overly religious groups. Lizardfolk Clerics of Ïorreg are common, as are Dwarven Clerics of Dumgarth.
The Champion is a mixture of the Cleric and the Fighter. Essentially, while they still benefit from the graces of their god, they are no longer the voice of said god. Rather, they are the blade and shield of the god. Filli Champions are common in Kitsune minorities who inhabit larger cities. Ïllume champions are frankly overly common. The legends of Shine have inspired many.
The Alchemist is a strange creature. They've mastered the strange flora of the Arengold forest in a new way. Instead of using it as the Druid might, they make magical elixirs to empower themselves. They are much appreciated by magic-hating tribes, and commonplace there. Most tribes prefer Clerics or Tengu, however, and so the Alchemist is rare.
The Barbarian is altogether overbearing. Humans are commonly capable of harnessing their rage and channeling it into combat, but few can match the Orcs. Their barbarians live for battle, and can live nearly eternally off of just a few conflicts.
The Arcane Users are a new group. Most magic users are Clerics or Druids, some kind of divine channeler. However, the Magus, Sorcerer, and Wizard have grown from a deep understanding of magic. They have understood the magic that governs the forest in a way that Clerics simply do not. Only a select few tribes dedicate themselves to the research of magic, such as the Gnoll tribes that live near the Arengold Elves.
The Oracle is a being that was blessed by all 5 gods. They are overwhelmed by this magic, and thus suffer a minor disability that flares when they channel magic. However, their power is undoubtable. If they are willing to push themselves, none can match their pure spirit and artistic heart. Oracles are most common in highly religious tribes, such as humans and halflings.
The Expert is occasionally referred to as a Rogue. This is highly insulting, frankly, to such talented individuals. They are incredibly good at every art they care to glance at, and they are capable of defending themselves by exploiting weaknesses in the form of their opponent. "Rogues" can be found anywhere. They are most common in highly organized tribes, such as Anadi and Ratfolk.While there are other classifications that are worth noting, they shall not be described in this introduction. In chapter 2, we shall discuss how these archetypes have changed the history of this fantastic forest.
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