The Folk of Cartyrion

The World of Cartyrion can be played using standard player character ancestries, heritages, backgrounds, and classes defined in any d20 rule system on the market. When published, the Folk of Cartyrion will resemble much of what you are familiar with from these other games, but there are many differences which will make the Folk of Cartyrion unique.
E
lves, Dwarves, and Gnomes... Orcs, Goblins, and Kobolds... Birdfolk, Catfolk, Ratfolk, Lizardfolk... and of course Humans and Halflings. All of these are familiar to anyone who has played any of the leading Fantasy role-playing games on the market today. All of these and omre are available as Player Characters in Cartyrion, but each of these has distinctions - some subtle, some not so subtle - that make the Folk of Cartyrion unique. These distinctions may role-playing seem fresh in Cartyrion.

Many of the differences derive from the cosmology and creation stories of each of the ancestries. Some derive from basis that no ancestry is inherently "good" or "evil" - there are good and bad individuals among every one of the peoples. Still more are derived from the lifestyles that were adopted by characters or their families.

Player Character Ancestries

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Awkwana
These crow-like birdfolk were first Awakened by their gods high atop the mountains in a remote corner of the world. Seen by others as aloof and somewhat mystical, they learn dedication to purpose from a young age. While many prefer the high peaks to this day, there are some that are more comfortable in the forest, and still others that prefer a life sailing the seas of the world.
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Elves
The first of the Folk to be Awakened, Elves are often dismayed that other gods Awoke other Folk who do not have the same appreciation for beauty as they do. They have established enclaves in almost every forest large or small. But some of their numbers seek other venues of nature to appreciate: mountains, plains, and seacoasts, even the cities of others.
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Goblins
Unlike most of the other Folk who were created in localized places, the first Goblins were Awakened wherever there were Elves, Dwarves, and Gnomes at the time. Imbued by their creator gods to demonstrate their worthiness as equals, goblins have injected themselves into every society of every ancestry ever since. Often overlooked by the rest of the Folk, they are resourceful, nimble, hardy, and impossible to discourage.
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Kobolds
Awakened to be servants and companions for the great dragons, Kobolds have spread to many parts of the world where the dragons no longer rule. Despite their diminutive size, they evoke the haughtiness, confidence, and - sometimes - cruelty of the great creatures they were intended to serve. Kobold colonies abound in the high mountains, but more than a few have made their way to the cities of the world.
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Chittiki
Awakened by their gods in a land of arid hills with desert and savannah not far away, these highly community-minded and industrious ratfolk have spread all across Cartyrion. There is not a city in the world that does not have a Chittiki population - often living not only among the other folk above ground, but in the warrens and tunnels that most cities hide below. Even on the seas, the Chittiki make their mark.
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Feliseans
Awakened in a land that featured both savannah and deep forest, the catfolk adapted to both quickly. Eventually, some chose a life in the mountains. Naturally curious, though, the Feliseans have spread across the world, and can be found living among other folk wherever one travels. A notable number of them have even found their homes sailing the seas.
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Halflings
Awakened by one of the deities that created Humans, the Halflings were intended to correct what that deity perceived as some flaws in the Humans' outlook on life. While they worked hard to achieve great things, the Humans didn't properly appeciate the success and comfort they generated. The Halflings have no such shortcoming - there are no other Folk on Cartyrion that appreciate the good life as much as the Halflings.
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Orcs
Masters of the grasslands near the northern forests, Orcs have been formidable hunters since they were first Awakened. Considered brutish by many, Orcs have a proud history of brave and noble heroes, but this is tempered by a history of impulsive violence by more impatient members of their folk. Today, Orcs are found around the world, in cities as well as the plains and forests.
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Dwarves
First Awakened by their gods in deep caverns of the tallest mountain on Cartyrion, the Dwarves have spread across both the surface and the underground of the world. While many still prefer to live deep within the reassuring stone of great peaks, Dwarf-built cities, towns, and villages dot the surface world. They live among the other folk easily, and are even the most formidable force on the seas.
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Gnomes
These are not the gnomes you are used to. They do not hail from the "first world"; they are not Fey. The Gnomes of Cartyrion were Awakened when deities of the Elves and Dwarves pooled their talents to create a race that embodied the best features of both. Gnomes are the most inquisitive and adventurous of all the folk, and are now found living among the folk anywhere.
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Humans
By far the most prolific of all of the Folk, Humans have spread from the fertile lands of their Awakening to all corners of Cartyrion. Having been taught the value of cooperation, they have preferred living in communities since their earliest days. Where Humans venture, land is transformed, and villages and farms spring up. Sometimes this puts them at odds with other Folk who value the original natural beauty of the land.
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Taxlatl
Awakened by their gods in a harsh land of marshes and fens, the Taxlatl spread across the world faster than any of the Folk. Ambitious, studious, and pragmatic, they developed powerful civilizations not once but twice in the history of Cartyrion. Felled first by disease and again by the god-war, the Taxlatl have not forgotten their history of greatness, and dream of rising a third time.

But these Ancestries are not the only choices available to a Player in Cartyrion. Cartyrion is a cosmopolitan world, and there are many Hybrid Ancestries to choose from as well - seventy-two of them, in fact! A player can choose a hybrid ancestry that involves any two of the "live-birth" ancestries (this leaves out only the Awkwana, Kobolds, and Taxlatl). Hybrids gain attributes reminiscent of both sides of their parentage.
This means more than just half-orcs and half-elves! If you wish to be part-gnome and part-orc, you can! Part goblin and part elf? That's available too!

These options include the ability to play characters that are essentially similar to the Tieflings, Aasimir, and other part-celestial, part-demonic, part-whatever other planar you wish. There are many races of Astralar, and good and bad among all of them. They also provide a rich source of patrons for Warlocks!
Finally, there are the Astral Hybrids. The beings that brought life to Cartyrion are the most powerful of their kind, but are not the only ones of their kind. Sometimes, the lesser Astralar leave their own marks upon the world. And sometimes, these marks take the form of children born to the Folk. The nature and special abilities of these rare hybrids will depend on the specific details of their parentage, and there are a wide variety of options available.
Hybrids and Astral Hybrids may not be available in the first release of the Building a Character guide, but they will be added as soon as possible!

Heritages, Cultures and Backgrounds

Each of the Ancestries has a number of Heritages that contributes to their inherent abilities. In addition, there are a number of Cultures - some specific to one or two Ancestries, and others common to all - that reflect the social environment a Player Character was raised in, and which has therefore contributed to their skills and abilities. Finally, a large number of backgrounds allow a Player to choose a "first profession" for their character which contributes still more to their skills and abilities.

Adventuring Classes

Twelve initial adventuring classes are available, some excelling in martial combat, others capable of spellcasting. Most have variants that permit even more customization. And other classes are planned for release as soon as they're ready.

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