The Farthest Reaches
The Peoples of Ardr
Generally, the attributes and stats of the races found on Ardr match those found in the standard fifth edition player's handbook; However their origins and place in the world differ, as outlined below. Note that the descriptions below serve as general origins of the races, not a personality guide for every Human, Dwarf, etc. That you run into, and shouldn't necessarily dictate how you write your own characters.
The history of humanity is largely the history of Dumont, as it is believed their race originated in the area of Lake Aern. However, it is said that there are primitive tribes of humans living in the eastern forests of the March separate from Dumont – forests the Dumontians view as their sovereign territory.
The existence of Half-Orcs is a very recent phenomena, and these people have yet to establish a place for themselves in society by and large. They exist almost exclusively on The Reach as Orcs are not found on the Northern Continents. As most all Half-Orcs are natives of the Reach they are often employed as navigators and trackers on the plains, though many are relegated to manual labor by colonists who believe them incapable of complex tasks.
The dwarves are a hardy people that can be found almost anywhere nowadays. No matter where in the world they are they'll likely be found at sea or near a port.
They originated on the Valmeir Isles, living off fishing and herd animals. The Dwarves were brought together by the sea, and were the first people to sail the open sea. With these ships groups of islandsafety were able to connect form pretty kingdoms to ensure mutual security. Recently a great jarl was able to conquer the pretty kingdoms under one banner, and took the name Isles they lived on for the name of his great kingdom.
The Dwarves often serve as merchants or adventurers on the high seas. Because they have contact with almost all the peoples of the realm they also serve as intermediaries between different nations and businesses. Finally,with trade between the northern lands and the colonies of the Reach picking up, roving band of posts have cropped up along popular shipping lanes. While these bands come from all walks of life, they're often led by Dwarves who use their intimacy with the sea against unwitting cargo ships.
Gnomes are known to be boisterous and inventive, and none will be so willing to tell you this as another Gnome. This pride has caused many a problem for a Gnomish traveler, as outside of Volun they have a mixed reputation amongst the peoples of Ardr. People's opinions of Gnomes are often colored by a single memorable encounter: a Gnome trying to create a new form of fertilizer blowing up half a farm, or being tricked into being a Gnomish home with no doors but twelve distinct "entrance windows". Whatever the experience Gnomes do command some degree of respect, as their people have existed for millennia, a history they validate through their vast
oft misremembered records of their ancestor's heroism and valor.
There exists a duality in Gnomish culture, as their society has simultaneously been obsessed with recording the past and with moving forward. The pursuit of both of these has often come at the expense of the things around them, be that an individual Gnome's relationship with their family or the decimated forest near a newly renovated Gnomish town.
The history of the elves is one of constant conflict and desire for harmony. Long dwelling isolated in the forests of the continent of Albain, they immerged centuries ago to find vast Gnomish cities and societies. This early period of Elvish history was marked by a long-running but sporadic fighting with the Gnomes, who encroached ever further into the forest in search of resources. This culminated in the battle of River's Bend, which ended in a stalemate, but resulted in the destruction of much of the southern forests of Albain.
Without their homes, the Elves were forced to come to a truce with the Gnomes; The Elves would be integrated into the nation of Volun and be given representation in government in exchange for unimpeded access to the forest and the use of Elven magic to help power the cities of Volun. The agreement proved mutually beneficial, but Elven resentment lingers about the decimation of their ancestral homeland.
Elves living outside of Volun are seen as hardworking and honest, and many who venture outside their home continent do so to prove their worth in a world in which they are often marginalized.
Half-Elves are an increasingly common sight as the peoples of the Northern Continents continue to intermingle. Half-Elves are most commonly found near the coastal cities of The March and Albain as well as the new continent of The Reach.
The Halflings originate from the fringes of the Martriarchy of Dumont in the northern hills of The March. Most live relatively quiet lives in their homeland as shepherds or farmers, few Halflings will ever willingly leave their birthplace in their entire lives. This lack of ambition has served them well, as they've managed to escape the wrath of Dumont despite living within its territory for generations. Those Halflings who do find the spark of ambition or seek to rise above their station suffer harsh social stigma and in some Halfling towns where the elder council is particularly powerful, face exile. This was a more rare occurance in the past, however with the discovery of the reach many Halfling have begun to see benefit in exile and have migrated to the new continent in order to live without the stifling pleasantry of Halfling society.
The Tieflings have not done nearly as well under the yoke of Dumont rule as the Halflings. They are a young people but are ambitious and seek a higher purpose. What this higher purpose is differs from Tiefling to Tiefling, but most all tend to feel a deep connection to the planet, especially to the volcano at the center of the island they call home. The Tieflings did not take well to dominion by Dumont and engaged in armed resistance for near a decade before their already small numbers dwindled to the point where peace became a necessity. Dumont's terms were harsh, and the island of Tief has been in a state of pseudo-martial law ever since. Many of the younger Tieflings seek to renew the conflict and earn their freedom, while those who lived through the old wars for independence look to the Gods now, yearning for freedom without shedding yet more Tiefling blood.
A lucky few Tieflings have escaped the isle, stowing away on cargo ships or disguising themselves among the many faceless Dumont soldiers coming to and from the isle. Some leave seeking to free their people from outside while others simply want to get as far as possible from the chains of Dumont rule.
The Dragonborn are the natives of The Reach, and they know it better than anyone. Their knowledge has proved an invaluable asset to most colonists, and an incredible danger to others. They largely been accommodating to new arrivals of The Reach, many have begun to move into Northern towns and outposts, bringing local produce and expertise with them. They serve as guides or artisans in these towns and earned themselves a largely positive reputation. However the Dragonborn are a solitary people, and with no central government to speak for them, some contact has not gone as well sometimes leading to entire Dragonborn tribes turning to violent opposition to the colonists.
These violent incidents were initially rare, however as the colonists of all nations have settled farther and farther south, tensions have begun to arise among some of the Dragonborn tribes, and some colonists now question the place of Dragonborn already living among them.
*Note: If you will be playing as a Dragonborn, please let the DM so you can be be provided more information about your society not privy to the other peoples of Ardr.