Here, creatures of dark evil roam the lands in search of prey, while others rule a terrified populace from the safety of their throne rooms. Meanwhile, elven warriors battle expansionist human kingdoms to protect their forest homes, dwarven rebels plot the overthrow of their human conquerors, and the armies of hobgoblin kingdoms grow increasingly powerful.
Spies and spellcasters seek knowledge and power for themselves and those they serve, and strands of their web-like plots reach into cities and towns across the continent. Ruins of ancient empires lie buried beneath burning desert sands, and their stories told in smoky back rooms attract brave fools eager for excitement and quick wealth. The streets are full of the brave and foolhardy, eager to draw steel and strike for little cause, and war between kingdoms is a constant occurrence. The courts of the nobility also hold mystery and intrigue, provided one can master social pressures greater than the threat of a giant’s club or a dragon’s fang.
All this and more awaits you in the Kingdoms of Kalamar, for use with Dungeons & Dragons® and other fantasy gaming systems.
What is Tellene? What are the Kingdoms of Kalamar?
Tellene is a planet similar in size to Earth, but with three moons, and a warmer climate. The lands of Tellene defined in the Kingdoms of Kalamar campaign setting sourcebook are often referred to as the Sovereign Lands, and include the kingdoms of Brandobia, the Kalamaran Empire, the cities and city-states of Reanaaria Bay, the Isle of Svimohzia, the Wild Lands and the Young Kingdoms.
The Kingdoms of Kalamar campaign setting is named after the great Kalamaran Empire, which once covered much of Tellene. But time weighs heavily upon all, and the empire’s reach is not what it once was. Its provinces declare independence, hobgoblin kingdoms thrive and foreign empires expand, while the monsters of the land grow stronger than ever. Still, its influence is felt almost everywhere in Tellene.
What races live on Tellene?
There are six human races throughout the world of Tellene, as well as dwarves, elves, half-elves, gnomes, and halflings. However, humankind’s historical arrogance means that racial tensions and skirmishes are common, except in certain cosmopolitan cities and along trade routes.
You can also find a few new races unique to Tellene – like half-hobgoblins. You see, full-blooded hobgoblins are a widespread civilized race with their own independent kingdoms – which most people consider a great threat. Both hobgoblins and half-hobgoblins (known as sil-karg) are even available as player character races! Half-orcs, on the other hand, are much rarer.
What are some highlights of the Kingdoms of Kalamar setting?
– Incredibly Detailed, Incredibly Real.
While filled with many of the fantastical elements that roleplayers love, the Kingdoms of Kalamar setting is fundamentally based on realism – within the context of the game, everything makes sense! We’ve made sure that things like languages, topography, trade routes, weather, political divisions and tensions all follow real-world patterns, so the longer you adventure on Tellene, the more it feels like a real world!
For example, each human or humanoid subrace has its own language. Thus, each place that race populates is named in the language of the people who live there. (An exception to this would be if the place was conquered, in which case the place name is often renamed by the victors.) This means the names are consistent. True, this is simply one minor detail, but when you consider that this kind of consistency exists throughout all aspects of the world, you’ll see how it makes sense, avoiding logical inconsistencies without sacrificing any excitement or adventure.
The wide variety of races have an extensively detailed history and background, starting from their original migration to the main continent and continuing through the present year. The political entities have a similarly detailed background history. Each governmental body is fully described with their history of war and peace. Thus it is easy to work large military and political conflicts into your campaign. Also, nothing happens without a logical reason. The explanation is never “that’s just the way it is,” or “it’s magic – it doesn’t have to make sense.”
The Player Characters are Truly the Heroes of the Story
While the mercenary band may be common, the adventuring party is rare, and no one else will step in at the last minute and save the day. No, the fate of many innocents depends on you – and you alone. You are the one who battles dragons, explores ancient tombs, and wields powerful magicks, while most common folk know only fear of such things – if they know anything at all. Because the setting is driven by the actions of ordinary men, even a low-level PC can have a profound effect and shape the world with his actions.
Magic is Not Common
Sorcerers, wizards and the like exist in Tellene, but they are uncommon among all of Tellene’s inhabitants. In some areas, they are quite rare, and the peoples in such areas believe most unusual (and seemingly inexplicable) events are a sign from one of many gods. The townsfolk easily confuse wizards – and especially sorcerers – with clerics, and arcane spells may be misunderstood as miracles. Even in the greatest cities, there are no “magic item shops” where a character might purchase items or spells, although centers of arcane learning, the treasure hoards of vanquished foes, ancient ruins, and the temples of the gods may provide characters with the rare magicks they may need.
Unlimited Campaign Possibilities
Dwarven warriors carry the body of a fallen leader deep into their underground mountain city, passing the tombs of kings dead for some thirty dwarven generations. Wandering Dejy nomads explore the ruins of a fallen civilization deep within the massive Vohven jungle, and awake a power none could expect. Bold adventurers set off into the Khydoban desert, seeking a country populated with undead and ruled by a powerful lich lord. Barbarian horselords war among each other for control of the cold north, while Slennish cultists kidnap the innocents left behind the lines. Xenophobic elves patrol the Lendelwood, guarding their ancient city against a threatened human assault. These adventures and more are yours when you step into Tellene.
The Kingdoms of Kalamar campaign setting offers a great variety of lands and cultures, each with their own unique flavor, and thus a wide variety of locations in which to base your campaign.. Whether you prefer to join raiding parties in the cold barbaric north, step on board a pirate ship in a cosmopolitan bay area, explore ancient cities and dark jungles on a tropical southern isle, wage front-line combat in a matriarchal society battling Imperial legions, journey deep into the harsh desert homes of savage creatures, slip through the shadowed streets of cities ruled by ancient (and modern) evils, or whatever locale you desire, you can find it here.