The Age of Heroes has ended. Long ago, legendary champions once walked these lands, rallying the people against the forces of darkness that would see them broken and enslaved. It was a time of high magic. Of man, elf, and dwarf going far beyond the limits of mere mortals. Magic in its entirety was within our grasp, and we stalked the earth as gods, reshaping it as we saw fit. We drained seas to build our cities beneath them, harsh deserts were converted into verdant fields with which to grow our crops and all the while when evil rose to threaten the world, be it from forces beyond our control or from within the hearts of men, heroes would rise to the occasion and drive it back.
But as time marched on and magic grew ever more advanced and powerful, so too did the evils that plagued the world. For every step forward that the three races of the world took, there seemed to be an even more apocalyptic disaster or powerful radical ready for them, eventually culminating in the rise of Marthos, the Last Evil. Once a wizard dedicated to the betterment of the people, Marthos went insane and began utilizing his powers to conjure forth legions of orcs, goblins, lizardmen, ogres, dragons, and all manner of other terrible creatures. Thus began the War of the Mad Mage, which stretched on for half a century, killing hundreds of thousands of people, and displacing even more. However, it was in this crucible of hardship and sorrow that the Mad Mage inadvertently forged his own undoing.
With the world teetering on the brink of falling before the Last Evil, a trio of paragons, each representing one of the major races stepped forth to oppose the Mad Mage. They spent years consolidating the scattered armies of the elves, dwarves, and men, before leading them to strike at Marthos' citadel. The ensuing battle culminated in the three heroes striking down the Mad Mage but at the cost of their lives and the lives of all those who had stood with them on the battlefield. The tremendous loss of life was enough to strike a killing blow to the dwarven and elven populations, and the two races who so valiantly stood next to humanity in their darkest hour soon faded from the world.
Centuries have passed since elf and dwarf kind's extinction, which marked an ebb to the world's magic. With the loss of magical power and knowledge to the ages, no great evil has risen to strike down mankind, and as such, no heroes have risen against it. All that remains of the old world are the Barrows, mass graves dedicated to the fallen and tombs of the great heroes of antiquity. While magic is significantly weaker, it now serves in tandem with technology to allow humans to live comfortable lives. However, this does not stop the brave and foolish from attempting to breach the many Barrows that dot the wilderness outside of the more remote towns and villages in search of ancient knowledge, artifacts, and treasure, knowing not what they may find buried beneath the surface.