An Introduction to Leystra
Welcome to the fantastic world of Leystra! It is an incredible world of high adventure, magic, mystery, air ships, monsters, political intrigue, an impending global war, evil bloodthirsty demons and much, much more. Hanging high in sky is the beautiful Maseia, a ringed blue orb which Leystra circles, and in the night sky the gods circle Maseia in a dance of tribute to her. Leystra is a world in need of heroes and a place where you can make you mark and have your name live on forever, a world of endless adventure!
Leystra is a world where magic is abundant and an everyday occurrence and souring high in the skies are the greatest magical creations, the air ships of the Airfleet. It is a world were heroes mold the world around them and their actions and deeds become the tales of legends. The campaign is set in a time of renaissance for Leystra and the world is ever expanding its boarders. There are lands just outside of friendly boarders that have been unexplored for hundreds of years. There are lands beyond the charted world that no mortal has set foot on yet, and some land masses that float in mid air! Magic relics, lost rituals, and tomes of power lie buried in the crypts, tombs and ruins of ancient peoples long forgotten. There are sights that have not yet been seen, people that have not yet been met, rewards beyond your wildest dreams, and dangers worse then your nightmares!
It is also a time of war, a great evil power is rising in the west and all of the civilized people of Leystra grow concerned for their safety. More reports of cities falling to this unnamed power are beginning to reach the ears of the commoners every day. Whispers of things that are dead and yet still walk are becoming more common placed. Only the truly bravest of adventures will endeavor out into the Wild and face this nameless evil. Magic is plentiful and the more the world is explored, the more new and fantastic items and powers are being discovered each and every day. It is an exciting and dangerous era to live in and more so for the brave adventurer!
The gods are found and seen almost nightly circling in the sky. Devout clerics of the Gods of the Old Age are in conflict with the new Clerics and Acolytes of the Gods of the New Age. Evil Lords have enslaved thousands as they seek out ancient power. New governments are on the rise and simple conflicts over trade routes and broken treaties could breakout into full scale war. As trade and commerce expands in the world, with the aide of the Airfleet, the Thieves’ Guilds have become some of the most powerful entities in the political arena, able to command kings to do as they ask. Paladins of the gods have sworn to bring an end to the evil of the world and call for a crusade to the West, warmongering empires that threaten the peace of the land while threats from the Underworld plot the extension of civilization. The Great City of Roma, the largest city in the know world and epicenter of all magic in the world, calls to all the races of the world to come and take your new life and fortune. Most people are coming with the promise of a fresh start and a chance to prosper, some, with the promise of something darker. The city is the crown jewel of the known world, the center of politics and culture, and yet lying just under the surface, something dark is stirring in Undercity. Adventure is waiting for you around every corner!
The known world of Leystra consists of two large island continents, one of which has only recently been discovered, and one smaller island continent. There are rumors and suspicions of other continents of the world, meaning Leystra is much large then most believe her to be, but modern air and seafarers dare not tread that deep into the open seas and skies to prove this. The dangers are too great. None of these known continents have been fully explored or mapped and new discoveries are always within reach for those willing to go out and grab them.
Welcome to the Leystra Campaign Setting!
The Known World of Leystra
From the looming snow covered high peaks of the Bevroren Mountains in Northern Sayra to the scorching Naveen Desert of southern Terrun, to the wide open plains of Daris the world of Leystra extends over a wide, wild land of filled with bustling kingdoms and untamed virgin wilderness. The known world of Leystra consists of two very large continents, Sayra to the north and Terrun to the south, separated by the Saffier Ocean with the third, smaller island continent of Daris located in the Saffier Ocean. Dozens of nations, hundreds of cities, and countless villages, outposts and nomadic tribes dot the expanse of the known world.
The continent of Sayra, being the largest of the three, measures more then four thousand miles from east to west and almost three thousand miles from north to south. The continent of Terrun measures about thirty-five hundred miles from east to west and around fifteen hundred miles across from north to south. The continent of Daris, being the smallest continent, measures almost fifteen hundred miles from east to west and less then a thousand miles from north to south. The world has many geographic features from frozen plains, sultry jungles, sun baked deserts, deep forests, sky scraping mountains, festering swamps, and flowing grasslands. Over these vast expanses of wide open space travel the adventurer, solider, sailor, airmen, and merchant alike. Maps are available and roads paved out for the well traveled areas of Leystra that could take a young adventurer with dreams of fame and glory far across the world. While just off the beaten path lie uncharted areas and unvisited parts of the world, to dangerous for the commoner. Hundreds of would-be heroes arrive in Roma each year, all with hopes of wealth and renown.
While much is known of the world, there is still more out there yet to be discovered. There are some areas of the known world not yet explored and are teaming with the knowledge of ancient civilizations, wealth yet to be found, and horrors beyond your imagination.
The Civilized People of Leystra
Leystra is home to millions of civilized sentient beings, each with their own cultures, beliefs, families, conflicts, religions and civilizations. Some have built vast empires across the landscape of Leystra. Some have conquered those empires and pillaged them for wealth and power! And some towns and villages are so remote that the events of the outside world rarely reach their boarders. The Old World continent of Seyra, commonly believe to be the cradle of all life on Leystra, is home to almost 80% of all civilized life on Leystra. Seyra is mostly populated by Humans and their ever expanding kingdoms and city-states. They currently command great armies and some of the largest cities in the world, as well as helping to establish trade routes around the known world. Humans may have the highest population in the Old World, but their people are divided and separated by beliefs and boarders. Some provinces and city-states of humans are democratic while others are dictatorships or worse. Some of the most dramatic changes in the world have risen from human greed and folly. The Tieflings have also carved out their own empires on Seyra. They have ruled from these empires just as their human cousins have, some as kind and some as cruel. The largest and darkest empire the world has ever known was the Tiefling Empire. Centered on the Black City, a magical epicenter of the world and where modern day Roma now is built upon, this empire was driven by diabolic forces and demonic henchmen from the Abyss, all hell bent to enslave and rule over all of Leystra. It was these diabolic forces that twisted the Humans who built the Black City and turned them into the Tiefling race we know today. This empire nearly dropped the shroud of darkness on Leystra, forever. That is until they were overthrown by the united Free People of Seyra.
The Forest Elves rule over most the dense forests of Leystra and are said to have vast numbers that stay hidden, in the forests. Their true population is unknown to non Forest Elves. They are a magical race, long lived and very beautiful to mortal eyes. They are skilled hunters, archers, and swordsmen and take pride in the art of war and combat. Forest Elves are the most common form of elf on Leystra. The Sea Elves dwell on the island continent of Daris, which lies between the continents of Seyra and Terrun. Sea Elves are the masters of the seas and command the largest armada known to Leystra. Their cities are key shipping and fishing ports on Leystra and it was the Sea Elves who first discovered the New World. Their Navy is second to none. The Mountain Dwarves, or just Dwarves as they prefer, rule the mountainous regions of the Seyra. They are busy creating great mines and holds in the mountains, masters of stone and masonry work. Most Dwarven kingdoms are digging for the valuable elements of the earth for the creation of magic weapons and armor, and they are careful not to dig too deep into the earth for fear of awaken something long forgotten. Halflings have made their homes along the many fertile river banks of the Seyra and established trading communities that have evolved into cities. They are known as a warm and welcoming race that has great interests in the world around them, but only a few ever venture out into it to see it for themselves.
Half-Orcs are also found in large number in the old world and they have brought their honor-bound ways and traditions to Seyra. The many tribes of Half Orc have had a strong impact on the world as they spread their influence. In the over three-thousands record years of history of Leystra, the Half Orc are recent additions to the Old World. Previously cut off from the rest of the world by the Razorsedge Mountains in the east, the Half Orc were pivotal in overthrowing the Tiefling Empire and the Black City, and have since held a place of great honor in society on Seyra. The Half-Elves, being a sort of in-between race of elves and humans, have had to find their own paths in the world, but are able to walk easily among both races. While they have no homelands or kingdoms to speak of, there are plenty of them in the world. They are a race without a true identity.
With the discovery of a New World continent of Terrun, seven-hundred miles off of the western shores of Daris, some new races that inhabit that continent have been found. Some are races that are native to Terrun have not previously encountered, as well as some variations of the races the world has always known. The High-Elves, rarely seen on Seyra before, have emerged in vast numbers in the deep virgin forests of Terrun. Many believe that the High-Elves have always been there, in the background, watching the world since its early beginnings, and that they know more then they are saying. The Warforged are a rare mechanical race created as weapons war and were never intended to be a race. Left over from a long forgotten war, these being were left out to their own devices after the last of the major wars ended on Terrun. The Warforged were forced to take care of them selves in a cold world that did not need them, and they have developed their own personalities and coconsciousness. They have recently gained the ability to create new members of their race, having found one of the original forges used to create their kind and they are now reproducing and are looking to make a name for them selves in the world. Gnomes, a race long thought to be extinct from the Old World have reemerged in the New World, where they have lived and flourished. Held up in their mountainous towns, they experiment with magic and machines alike. Sand Elves and Rock Dwarves, cousins to the Forest Elves and Mountain Dwarves, do battle with the evil Drakeborn for control of the Naveen Desert. The desert, which used to be their lush and beautiful home and is now an arid wasteland! They have evolved to deal with the harsh environmental conditions of the desert. They fight for to regain control of their homeland and restore it to its former beauty, and they are loosing.
Aside from the major races mentioned here, there are a several other minor races that are slowing bringing themselves to light in the Wild. And as these new races are discovered, they will find their place in society on Leystra.
Monsters and the Wild
While the heavily populated areas of Leystra are civilized, metropolitan, and safe to the common traveler, they are sparsely spread out all over the immense spans of the continents with leagues of wide open wilderness between them. If not for the road system, which can be anything from smooth brinks roads or little more then dirt paths in the more remote areas, travel across the continent would be impossible. Even the mighty airships stick to the well beaten path and do not venture too far into the Wild. However, these roads and air passages do not make the wilderness safe, far from it. Travel a day outside of any major city or town, or just off of the road, and one could find themselves face-to-face with some the savage races of Leystra. Creatures who seek only chaos and death, those who would see this beautiful world burned to ash and remade in their fiendish image. Some of the unrelenting and remorseless enemies of the civilized people are the Orcs, Goblins and their kin who keep a constant vigil for the destruction of the world. Blood thirsty, these races have imbedded themselves into ever corner of the world in the hopes of eventually watching it all burn and die. Breeding their hatred in cavern strongholds, makeshift fortresses in the mountains, or towns and villages they have overrun, they prey on the innocent and the weak. The wary traveler must keep a close eye on the horizon for these vile creatures for around any corner could be an Orc Death Squad or a Goblin Raiding team!
Danger can be found everywhere on Leystra and no where is completely safe, even underground. Under the surface world of Leystra lies a complicated network of caverns, mines, tunnels and fissures known as the Underworld. It is home to many vile creatures, but none as malevolent and malicious as the Drow. This evil race of dark elves gathers in settlements of macabre and ghoulish grandeur, lit by luminescent fungi and magic, and crawling with several species of spiders. They are loyal to their evil Queen-Goddess and seek to enslave the surface world. The Mind Flayers, also of the Underworld, are closely associated with the Drow. While not being allies, they hold a peaceful coexistence with each other at this time, and share similar goals for the surface world.
Among some of the other well know dangerous species of Leystra are the Drakeborn, an evil dragonkin race who rule over the Naveen Desert. These desert reptiles are brutal killers who drove the Sand Elves and Rock Dwarves out of their once lush homeland and over the centuries have been transforming the region into a sandy desert. Also, left over from the era of the old Tiefling Empire, some Devils and Demons still reside on Leystra and plot their own campaigns against all that is good and lawful. While most remain hidden to the world, some are quietly rising to power once again. Dragons are also a part of the world, though many have gone into hibernation or into hiding. Some are good, some are evil, and some just want to be left out of the matters of the land. In deep dark tombs and desecrated lands the Undead, long thought to have been extinct in the last Crusade, are once again haunting the nights. There are countless other monsters that roam the world and wish to do it harm. This is the reason why the need for heroes is great!
There is also the danger and fear of the unknown world, the Wild. With the recent discovery of a new continent to the world, there are many areas out there that simply have not been explored, with many dangers that have no names. Who knows what untold riches and gruesome nightmares could lay just over the mountains?
Portals and Artifacts
As the world begins to expand its boarders in this time of Renaissance on Leystra, the unknown and unexplored reaches of the world are beginning to be unearthed and with them the secrets that they once held. As each year passes, new knowledge is found in the realm of the Wild and new artifacts of ancient, long dead civilizations are beginning to be found. With them, the knowledge of Leystra’s ancient past. It is apparent that life has existed on Leystra for far longer then recorded history, and that there are many secrets still left to be learned of this wonderful world. Who the people were that once populated the world of Leystra is a mystery. This great mystery is just now being explored by brave adventures, and with each answer they discover, more questions are revealed.
These ancient civilizations have left some interesting evidence behind as proof of their advanced existence. One of the more interesting finds in these explorations of the Wild has been portals. Circles of power construct to teleport a person, or several persons, vast distances in only a matter of a few seconds. As it turns out, the world of Leystra is spotted with these portals. Most have been created in recent history; many by the old Tiefling Empire to transport their troops but others were created by powerful arcane magic users. However, there are many that predate known life on Leystra. Some of these ancient portals are active and well used; some seem old and broken with destinations unknown. Whoever built these older, more powerful portals or where the inactive portals go is a mystery, as they all are either too old to function or the activation of the portal is unknown.
Aside from portals, an occasional artifact of power may be found from the ancient world. These are very powerful magic items, forged in Leystra’s ancient past when magic operated much differently then it does today, and seemingly was much more powerful then now. These items are extremely rare, and sot after by many people. These items are so powerful that in the wrong hands could be catastrophic; in the proper hands they could bring peace to the whole world. However, in either case, it is clear that some of these items are too dangerous to be possessed by any mortals, either good or evil. It is believed they were hidden by the gods from society until the proper time of need was to arise. The true origins of these items are unknown, but what is known is that some have been recovered and are in the hands of mortals.
Rise of the New Age Religions
In recent years, a new invention has brought about a religious upheaval the likes that Leystra has never seen before. The looking glass, or telescope, a device originally invented for military purposes is used to magnify the sight of the user, so objects that are far away appear much, much closer to the user. Soon after its invention, stargazers of Leystra who look up to the skies to see their gods swirling in the night skies began using the looking glass to observe these celestial bodies in much greater detail. However, an unexpected discovery came about because of this. It was soon observed that other objects also moved much like their gods, who are moons of the planet Maseia, like Leystra. It was soon discovered that these moving stars were planets, similar to their own Maseia! And as new planets were discovered and named, religions of these “new gods” soon began to spring up.
It was reasoned that if the objects in the night sky were gods, then so were these newly discovered planets. This has spawned a religious upheaval on Leystra, in some cases violent. Worshipers of the Old Age, the ten gods of the local sky, stalwartly reject these new gods, calling them “false” or “Manufactured” gods. Followers of the New Age Religions believe that their gods have always been there, and it is not until recently that we could see them in the night sky.
Most if the common folk of Leystra are not so strong in their convictions and it is common to see many gods, both New and Old, being worshiped in the average home. In truth, many of the peoples of Leystra are polytheistic; however there are some who are devoted to one and only one god, some to the point of fanaticism.