Ruins of Adventure
- Races: Human, Half-Elf
- Classes: Any
- Ability Requirements: none
- Alignments: Lawful
- Starting Cash: 5d4 x10gp
- Bonus Languages: Thorass
- Recommended Languages: Alzhedo, Cosh, Lantanna, Sespechian, Shaartan, Thorasta
- Local Religions: Helm, Ilmater, Torm, Tyr
- Weapon Slots: +1 slot
- Non-weapon Slots: By class
- Available Categories: By class
- Bonus Proficiencies: none
- Required Proficiencies: none
- Recommended Proficiencies: none
Overview: The other Empires of the Sands have forged trading empires that span Faerûn, but Tethyr is a nation that has turned inward. Tethyr has all the internal instability of Calimshan but none of the same burgeoning trade prosperity. Tethyr is a wealthy empire, but its economy is nowhere near as robust. Endless warfare between squabbling city-states makes it chaotic and dangerous. The governments of Calimshan and Amn watch for any chance to bring peace to their troubled neighbor, and acquire its land and resources at the same time. Most adventurers in Tethyr are mercenaries, as the numerous factions vying for power practice the necessary treachery and rebellion.
Description: It is commonly said that only a fool travels far from his home in Tethyr without a dagger in his hand. It’s hard to say whether this is true or not, because most of the folk who try to test it are killed. The people of Tethyr are not choosy about what form of armor they wear; if it can deflect blows or absorb damage, they wear it.
Most Tethyrians are armed, but no matter what weapons a Tethyrian carries, none are without the dhaka, a traditional long, hooked dagger worn in a black sheath that doubles as a buckle for a wide leather belt known as a jada. Light, comfortable robes are usually worn over a Tethyrian’s armor, with sky blue, forest green, and dark brown as the most favored colors.
Role-Playing: One expects combat when one grows up in Tethyr. All people of that realm have a great respect for the power of the sword and they tend to surround themselves with bodyguards and loyal followers. Land ownership is also a major source of respect and status. Every Tethyrian wants his own huge tract of land. Tethyrians are also very deferential to landowners, counting them worthy of respect.
Tethyrians are fair and open-minded. However, they are extremely cautious, in some cases bordering on paranoid. On the other hand, Tethyrians admire personal accomplishments, especially if those feats have borne tangible benefits. A warrior of Tethyr who is reluctant to give his trust may be won over by tales and proof of his companions’ own grand exploits. Even though Tethyrians are capable of trusting others, they always keep one eye on their associates weapons. Still, a Tethyrian’s promise is taken quite seriously, so there are few acts of betrayal within that nation. One expects one’s enemies to attack whenever the opportunity presents itself, but not one’s allies.
- The high state of caution and alertness common in a Tethyrian makes them surprised only on a 1 or 2 on a d10.
- Tethyrian spellcasters have a natural ability to use the spells of the school of Divination, so they are valuable elements of any deal made between rival merchant factions. Casters on both sides watch the other for signs of betrayal, so such treachery is almost unheard of in this land. In game terms this is reflected by reducing the level of spells in the Divination school or sphere. These spells are one level lower than listed. For example, magic mirror is normally a 4th-level spell. When a Tethyrian wizard researches, memorizes, or casts it, it is only a 3rd-level spell. No spell can be reduced below 1st level by this special ability.
- Starting at 5th level, any Tethyrian with the Literacy proficiency may attempt to use both Wizardly and Priestly magical scrolls by making a successful Literacy check. On a failed check, the scroll backfires in some way. This sort of malfunction is almost always detrimental to the thief and his party. It could be as simple as accidentally casting the reverse of the given spell or as complex as a foul-up on a fireball scroll, causing the ball of flame to be centered on the thief instead of its intended target.
- Tethyrians attract men-at-arms and followers when they reach 7th level, regardless of when their class would normally grant them. This only occurs when the Tethyrian has cleared out a parcel of land and built a stronghold upon it. Note that humanoid followers will always be fellow Tethyrians (even if the PCs stronghold is not in Tethyr). If the Tethyrian is a priest, he also receives dispensation to build a religious stronghold at 7th level. Likewise, if the Tethyrian possesses the Raise Army proficiency, he may use it beginning at 7th level (rather than 10th).
- The empire of Tethyr is currently unstable due to the assassinations of the former royal family and all the subsequent infighting and treachery of power-hungry people trying to gain control. All base prices of initial equipment are thus increased by 10%.
- The caution of a Tethyrian makes a bad first impression. When meeting an NPC for the first time, the Tethyrian suffers a -4 penalty on reactions. In subsequent encounters with the same NPC, for example an innkeeper who is met at supper time, then seen again the following day after a good night’s sleep, the penalty is reduced to -2. It is possible for the penalty to be erased altogether, but it will take an act of trust from either the NPC or the Tethyrian himself.
- Tethyrian spellcasters devote much time and effort to mastering spells of detection but not those of concealment. In game terms this means that all spells listed under the school of Illusion/Phantasm are one level higher than listed. For example, phantasmal force is a 2nd-level spell for Tethyrians. Spells listed as 9th-level (or 7th for priest spells) are impossible for these characters to master.
- Land is held in such high regard that if the Tethyrian’s tract of land is attacked and his stronghold is destroyed or the land is ravaged, he is in complete and utter social disgrace. In order to redeem himself, he must rebuild his stronghold, restore the land, and go on a heroic quest to restore his name. Usually, this quest involves getting back at the forces that inflicted this indignity on him.
Return to Homelands.