Campaign of the Month: October 2010
Wyrmshadow Campaign Setting
Wyrmshadow History: The Age of the Ancients
The Age of the Ancients
ca. 500,000 – 300,000 years ago
During the Legendary Wyrm’s 200,000 year rest, the Ancients set about to continue the works of their creator. Three of these Ancients, Aos, Nus, and Phi, collaborated with one another to build a temple in honor of the Legendary Wyrm on the northern continent amid the highest of the mountains. Each of the Ancients took upon themselves certain responsibilities, as their powers were but a shadow of the Wyrm, and they all wished their creator to be pleased with their efforts when it awoke from its rest.
Some Ancients devoted themselves to carving out rivers and lakes, creating fresh waters from which future civilizations could stretch out and thrive. However, in their zeal to accomplish this task, they went too far, ripping the southern continent in half, a raging fresh-water river dividing the land completely. This happened again in the north, as other Ancients went too far in their search for more relics from the World Before, their digging causing a fracture in the northern continent that would tear the land apart and send it crashing into the waves beneath, never to see the light of day again. The northern continent was now the only one left on Wyrmshadow. To make matters worse, the massive quakes left the temple in ruins and the sleeping Wyrm trapped beneath the tallest of the icy northern mountains.
In the chaos of this time, several Ancients were killed, a wholly unexpected consequence of their abuse of power. One of the dead, Phoenix, resurrected itself from its ashes, inspiring Nus to take the initiative to oversee the fallen Ancients and, if possible, facilitate their own return to life. The Ancient Phi argued that only those not directly responsible for the destruction should be allowed to return to life, effectively creating the primordial concepts of justice. Aware that their powers were too great to be handled without regard, Aos created The Balance to divide their powers evenly and prevent any one Ancient from becoming too powerful for its own good.
By the time the Legendary Wyrm awakened, Aos had carved a rift in the mountains above its body, allowing it to rise from its slumber. This rift would come to be known as the Wyrmscar Caverns. As the Wyrm rose from these caverns, it gazed upon the world, saw the damage caused by its children, the Ancients, and wept for the fallen who died because it left them unprepared to contend with the power they possessed. Those tears would form a second great river, the force of which roiled the ocean at its exit with such ferocity that it generated intense storms on the coast that would never cease to be in all of history. Thus was created the Wyrmtear River and the Storm Coast, a cradle for future civilizations to come.
In its sadness and regret, the Legendary Wyrm decided to leave Wyrmshadow for the stars, taking Aos, Nus, and Phi with it to commune on how to properly handle the task of building a stable, thriving world. The Legendary Wyrm stripped all but three of the Ancients of their power, calling upon them to learn how to survive in this chaotic world they had created through sheer force of their will and cunning. The three who it allowed to maintain their power, Aos, Nus, and Phi, would accompany the Legendary Wyrm on a very special, extraordinary journey.
The Wyrm revealed to its chosen three Ancients the existence of the cosmos. Existing long before the Wyrm’s awakening eons past, the cosmos was a series of dimensions, or cosmic planes, eternally linked to one another with the planet of Wyrmshadow as its axis. In fact, the world of Wyrmshadow itself was merely one of these cosmic planes (albeit the largest and most cosmically important of them all), Materia.
Aos, Nus, and Phi were taken from Materia through a plane called the Gates to a place the Legendary Wyrm designated as “The Perch”, a tiny area positioned beyond the other planes and the only place in all of existence that could give one a perspective on the whole of reality. From The Perch, the Legendary Wyrm and the three Ancients that accompanied him, henceforth known as The Elders (and later as The Elder Gods) would watch history unfold and determine how best to fulfill The Legendary Wyrm’s legacy.
What they saw during those first moments on The Perch were among the most tumultuous and difficult events they had to watch: the plunging of their former-Ancient brethren into the Age of the Lost.