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Campaign Setting
on: March 10, 2011, 03:33

Welcome to Riadus

Riadus is the campaign setting in which the Second Darkness campaign will take place. Riadus is the name used by scholars, historians and most religions to describe either the world upon which everyone lives, or sometimes the entirety of the material plane (sometimes these are believed to be the same). It is a vast and largely unexplored world full of wonder and adventure.

The Continent of Reylan

Reylan is one of the largest continents on Riadus. Located in the southern hemisphere, it stretches nearly 3000 miles from the edge of the arctic wastelands in the south to the sub-tropic jungles in the northeast. The climate varies greatly across the land, with terrain including barren deserts, rainy marshes, snow-capped mountains, open plains, dense forests, rocky badlands and murky swamps.

The people who call Reylan home are as diverse as the terrain. The continent is dominated by a variety of human kingdoms, though most races can be found throughout the land. Elves control their own vast empire in the northern jungles, while dwarves and gnomes have their own holdings along the western and eastern coastlines. Goblins, orcs, kobolds, wulfen and numerous other races gather in small communities or tribes which eek out an existence within and around the more civilized peoples of Reylan.

Dotting the landscape are the ruins of an ancient and long forgotten empire known as Thereath. This empire is believed to once span the entire continent of Reylan as their relics can be found nearly everywhere. The vast majority of these ruins are little more than the crumbling remains of cities, fortresses and a variety of monuments with no known purpose or meaning. Occasionally a place or artifact of ancient power is uncovered, but such power is usually weak or diminished. Such things are highly prized by scholars who attempt to piece together the unknown history of the Thereans.

The Free States of Ardmyre

The Free States of Ardmyre is a vast territory controlled by city-states which hold little, if any, allegiance to each other. More often that not, some city-states war with each other over control of their surrounding territories or for possession of natural resources. Many of the larger cities are little more than havens for thieves and brigands and many city lords only relinquish power by being overthrown by the next despot.

Despite its lawless reputation, the people of Ardmyre are typically neutral, and the various city lords are on average fair and just in their treatment of their people. It is a place similar to the untamed Europe of the early Middle Ages. Thieves, highwaymen, brigands, pirates and crooks of all sorts plague the land, but there are usually lawmen and local heroes to stand against them.

The Second Darkness Campaign takes place in western Ardmyre, a frontier land which lies along the northern reach of the Gulf of Ardmyre. The terrain mainly consists of low mountains and surrounding foothills, interspersed with grassy hills and valleys. Forest covers much of the land in the foothills, particularly near the coast. The area is sparsely settled, with the largest city in the area being Riddleport and relatively few smaller settlements.

All characters are expected to be from this area, or one of the bordering kingdoms described below.


The campaign begins in the city of Riddleport, a one-time secret pirate haven which as grown into a port settlement in its own right. The settlement became a city on the edge of the frontier of the western wilderness of Ardmyre. Though now a proper city, Riddleport still holds true to its roots and still known to harbor pirates and is run by numerous crime lords. Even the city's overlord is an ex-pirate.

See the Pathfinder Companion: Second Darkness for details about Riddleport and its people. Note the information provided in the Pathfinder Companion assumes the campaign is taking place in a different campaign setting and as such, many of the names, people and deities will be different. The primary differences are listed here.

Riddleport (Statistics)

Large City nonstandard (titular overlord and multiple crimelords)

Alignment CN

GP Limit 40,000 gp; Assets 26,600,000 gp

Population 13,300

Type: mixed (77% human, 10% goblin, 4% half-orc, 3% dwarf, 3% tiefling, 1% wulfen, 1% gnome, 1% other)

Authority Figures: Gaston Crom male human (ex-pirate Overlord of Riddleport), Boss Croat male half-orc (crimelord, drugs/contraband), Clem Zincher male human (crimelord, slave trader/arena), Shora Plum female tiefling (crimelord, prostitution/drugs/alcohol), Zaphras male wererat (crimelord, racketeering/hired muscle)


Rothnn is a vast but sparsely populated kingdom which consists mainly of rainy swamps, marshes and grasslands. The capital city is Caleal, an enormous metropolis which nearly half the population of the entire kingdom calls home. The majority of the kingdom is dotted by keeps and fortresses which are maintained by the Rothnn military, which safeguards what few resources the nation has.

The people of Rothnn are deeply religious and almost universally worship Valera, the goddess of valor, justice and honor. As a result, the people lead rather strict lives where punishments are often swift and harsh, but are otherwise safe from dangers which plague neighboring kingdoms.


Riss is a relatively small kingdom ruled by a cruel overlord who maintains power through might and constant war with neighboring kingdoms. The constant strife the people are threatened with should their overlord fall from power is enough to maintain their loyalty.

The kingdom is mountainous and barren, with a cold dry climate making life difficult. Such terrain makes Riss extraordinarily defensible from foreign invasion. Despite the unwelcome climate and harsh conditions, the mountains have an usually high concentration of Therean artifacts, making Riss home to countless places of ancient power. The principal city of Tyaral is actually built upon the ruins of a well preserved Therean city.

Any race other than human is considered live-stock in Riss. Slavery is common practice here, with the majority of slaves being goblin and kobold, though a fair number of gnomes, elves and dwarves can be found wearing a slave collar here. Even humans are slaves, though these usually result due to punishment for a crime or simply because the human is an foreigner. Though not everyone owns a slave, many own several and a few of the members of the aristocracy own enough to form a small army and even use them as such. Slaves in Riss outnumber the citizen population by four to one.


Dynthgar is home to the dwarves of Reylan, and is widely considered to be where originated from. Most foreigners believe the dwarves of Dynthgar live in great halls carved deep into the hearts of the mountains which dominate the region, but this belief is false. The dwarves here live in cities which sprawl along the coasts. The mountains contain a nearly endless supply of natural ores which the dwarves mine continuously. Many mines are thousands of years old and continue to expand, making some the size of cities, but the dwarves to not live there. Rather, such ancient mines are converted into fortresses which the dwarves may retreat should they be invaded, or more commonly suffer the extreme weather of coastal storms.

The dwarves of Dynthgar are as well know for sailing and shipbuilding as they are for mining. Ships sailing from Dynthgar can be found in every port in Reylan, though they are far more commonly found along the coast of the Western Ocean.

The population of Dynthgar is almost exclusively dwarf. Other races visit, but usually don't stray far from port and rarely stay longer than necessary to conduct whatever business they have there. Those non-dwarves who attempt to make a life in Dynthgar are encouraged to make their life a dwarven life, and any attempt to maintain any sort of foreign culture or religion is met with complain and occasionally hostility.

Hollow Isles

Within the Gulf of Ardmyre is a small archipelago known locally as the Hollow Isles. They are not a kingdom to themselves and are considered part of Dynthgar. They receive their name from the numerous natural caves and old dwarven mines which lie under their surface. A thousand years ago the island chain contained rich deposits of precious stones, primarily rubies and sapphires. Once the dwarves mined everything of value, they left, abandoning the islands and their holdings there. Since that time, a tribe of wulfen made their way across the gulf to make a home there which would be undisturbed by nations of the mainland.

The Hollow Isles today are little more than a marker for sailors to use in navigating the gulf. The wulfen who live there rarely leave, and even more rarely receive visitors. Of those that do visit the islands, most are scholars seeking Therean artifacts or thrill seekers and curious explorers who wish to explore the caves and mines. The native wulfen leave such visitors alone as their numbers are few, but do not hesitate to eliminate any who threaten their otherwise peaceful lives.

Of the wulfen who leave the island, most due to by accompanying explorers on their return trip home, though some attempt to make the journey themselves in crude, oar-driven boats and rafts. Such wulfen leave mainly due to curiosity about the mainland and often return when such curiosity is satisfied.

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