Sample Cultures #5: Beast-Folk (And one Duergar)
After the success of the Black Emperor's Beast-Folk, he was quickly imitated by many others, including the distant Immortal God-King Imhotaz. Aezygyptiak word for beast is 'ko' and the word 'people' or 'folk' is 'bold', thus kobold. Of course, Imhotaz is a god and not regular beast could do. A shameless imitator further, he did as other gods did and used the great majestic drake. They have a couple other names such as 'dragonborn', 'draekin' and the technically accurate 'lizard-folk', but mostly kobold is the adopted epitaph.
A quarter of kobolds have functional wings, while another quarter can only glide and a quarter can breath fire. Fire and wings are not mutually exclusive, you just have to get lucky on the genetic lottery twice and those who lose out on both tend to be bigger and bulkier then the rest of their kin, especially so then those with wings. They are now the elite troops of Imhotaz's army and second in status only to the Jade Kings.
Goat-folk who live in the mountains of Aesar. Their appearance, likely their very creation, was recent enough that it is noted in oral history of the Aesir as their being a time before they existed. They are on-off war and constant war with some of the Aesir tribes that consider them as food and are sometimes allies with the Aesir tribes that consider them people. The Utgaroar, being entirely herbivorous, are not considered competitors for meaty food and they normally eat plants considered unwanted by the Aesir. They move in great herds constantly migrating about and trade hard-to-find plant delicacies for some of the Aesir's featherbreath gas to give them floating wagons to turn their herds into caravans.
Frost Duergar. Once they ruled the peaks of Jotunhar and then the Aesir kicked them out and renamed the place Aesar. The Jotunn are pretty unhappy about this. Now they live around the base of the mountain and occasionally make war on the Aesir. Now, the Jotunn were once a very advanced people, the featherbreath gas may have originally been their creation alongside other lost wonders, but they were one of those advanced civilizations that grew decadent and complacent enough that primitive barbarians like the Aesir could stomp all their progress and advancement down to the ground. Some of their old magitek is still hidden in caches up around Aesar, searched for by both the Aesir and Jotunn and some Jotunn still maintain some old family heirlooms they may or may not know the full capability of.
They also have a on-off relationship with the Utgaroar.
The Dark Lands are mostly cold and mountainous, but by strange quirk a lot of their valleys are very hot. The ice on top of the mountains reflect light down and make the place miserably hot and ugh the humidity. It's like the air is made of watery hatred. Here, human civilizations mostly descended of the dark-skinned Chaukuku before their exodus to underground and the also dark-skinned Foriar who coincidentally also mostly live underground. This was the people that birth Hrod who then tried to conquer them with an army of hyena men called Gnolls.
When Hrod was soundly beaten, only a few loyalist gnolls remained with him and the rest fractured into regiment based tribes. The tribes still use their regimental banners as their tribal banners and give military based rank. Their settlements are war camps, all of their citizens soldiers and their culture attuned to war. Partly out of persecution and partly because of how Hrod had to leave them, most gnolls know only how to sustain themselves through conquest, and for it the persecution continues, feeding an endless violent cycle.
The Gnoll are highly organized and have a form of honor in the code of conduct handed down to them by Hrod which oversees their treatment of defeated foes and other such things. They make war upon one another until in these cases they are called 'war games' and are even more structured and codified since all parties have agreed upon them before hand. Deaths happen but being brutal and thorough is not as necessary since their are agreed upon victory conditions everyone agrees on. These can include violent games of capture the flag and kink of the hill.
The Beast-Folk of the Black Empire represent a more successful transition to peace-time after a much more successful war. The loyalist gnolls are rarely seen outside the Black Capital and the Black Palace but the Black Prince created beings from many animals: squirrels, rats, cats, dogs, wolves, lions, horses, cows, boars, elephants, rhinos, birds of prey, songbirds. Domesticated beasts like rats, cats, dogs, cows, horses and songbirds were most populous, used as working class with cows and horses used as farms and manual labourers, cats and dogs as those who did more complicated tasks, rats were set to dirtier tasks that their inherited immunity to diseases helped greatly with and songbirds did tasks with which flight as helpful for as well as set to being makers and spreaders of propaganda. To this day, these subraces have best integrated to peace-time and remain the most populous.
The Black Prince still used these species in his armies and indeed they often made the bulk of them. Their were a troop of rats that were in charge of chemical warfare, the Black Plaque Brigade, and along with rats being set to 'dirty tasks' their is a stigma upon rat-folk they struggle against to this day. Lions acted as singular scouts and wolves were their pack-oriented counter parts, the latter also acting as vanguards. Squirrels were also scouts as well as spies and assassins. The elephant-folk are as tall as their four-legged counter parts and carried heavy siege ordenance and rhino-folk, boar-folk, deer-folk and male cow-folk were shock troops. Bird of prey, the hawk-folk, were aerial scouts and terrors of the sky, acting out air strikes against cities unprepared for death from above.
Elephant, rhino, deer, bull and boar-folk were the face of the Black Prince's conquering armies and the 'horned ones' and 'tusked ones' suffer stigma as violent stupid brutes to this day. Wolf and lion-folk fare better for they were not seen as much and often are lumped with cat and dog-folk. Squirrel-folk were nearly not seen at all and other then being lumped with rat-folk do not suffer much stigma at all. Hawk-folk often even identity themselves as simply bird-folk and since they quickly became irrelevant after the beginning of the Black War when anti-air ordinance was developed most do not remember them. Some still look down upon all beast-folk them as unnatural beasts who dare to pretend to be humanoid, tools that should have been cast-aside once their task was done and invaders by those still bitter about the Emperor's conquest.
Their was also a population of crow, fox and raccoon-folk made latter but all were lost in the campaign of the Meikyuu Forest.
edited 14th Mar '12 6:11:23 PM by God_of_Awesome