Gazetteer 1 - The Grand Duchy of Karameikos
The Grand Duchy of Karameikos was founded in AC 970, the country has been built up over the last 30 years by Duke Stefan Karameikos. It was conquered in AC 900.
It is a medieval fantasy combining a conquered Romanesque ruling class over a Transylvanian middle and lower class. Throw in some elves, dwarves, halflings and gnomes for good measure on the side of the government and a bunch of orcs, goblinoids and gnolls as the base bad guys, and the extraordinary evil being werewolves, vampires and dragons.
The state most closely tied to a great power, Karameikos is ruled by the Thyatian noble, Duke Stephan Karameikos. Exchanging his ancestral lands 30 years ago for sole sovereignty of an undeveloped Thyatian colony, Duke Stephan is now attempting to transform Karameikos into a developed state. Many Thyatian nobles have accompanied Duke Stephan to his new lands, where they now impose their will upon the native Traldarian peoples. Following a bloody and unsuccessful rebellion, the Traldarians have come to accept their new rulers. Baronies have been granted by Duke Stephan to many of his Thyatian followers, but large tracts of land remain undeveloped and unallocated. Largely a wilderness setting, Karameikos is a good setting for low-level adventures. Here, low-level PCs can make names for themselves, and in time they may even be given a land grant by the Duke. Until that day, adventurers will be kept busy clearing out the monsters that lurk in the forests and mountains of Karameikos.
Description: This heavily-forested region used to be known as Traladara, a "nation" that was really a loose confederation of independent baronies.
Thirty years ago, Stefan Karameikos, an ambitious nobleman of the nearby Empire of Thyatis, traded his ancestral lands to the Thyatian emperor for Thyatian recognition of Karameikos' right to independent rule of Traladara. Spending all his family fortune on mercenary armies, Stefan Karameikos invaded Traladara, quickly conquering the nation's largest sea-port, Marilenev, and settling garrisons in all the region's larger communities.
He renamed the nation after himself: It became the Grand Duchy of Karameikos. Marilenev he renamed Specularum, a much more Thyatian sort of name. The Grand Duchy was recognized by Thyatis as an independent nation; although its rulers never called it a kingdom that is effectively what it is.
Stefan Karameikos set up his own allies and cronies as regional rulers, allowing the original Traladaran rulers to retain their baronies only when they swore allegiance to him.
The Thyatian rulers, though they control the nation's economic and military might, don't have complete control of the land. Karameikos is dark and forested, with hundreds of square miles populated only by animals, by loggers and foresters, by nonhumans such as elves and goblins. The Traladaran forests are an ancient home to vampires, werewolves and other dark creatures of legend. Secret Traladaran popular movements oppose the Thyatians, occasionally sabotaging the plans and activities of their rulers.
Ruler: Duke Stefan Karameikos, thirty years older and more experienced, still rules his land. He tries to keep his nation strong, the better to discourage invasion from dangerous neighbours such as Thyatis. He does not actively oppress the Traladarans to improve the lot of his Thyatians; the laws he passes are written to be fair to all. But Karameikos himself cannot enforce every law, and many of his Thyatian subordinates are not as scrupulous in their dealings with the Traladarans. Karameikos' wife is Duchess Olivia, an icy, intelligent woman who is a good advisor for him; his children include Lady Adriana (age 20, a notoriously independent fighter), Lord Justin (age 18, a slight young man with a talent for mathematics and trade), and Lord Valen (age 14, a clever and somewhat sneaky young man anxious to learn about the world).
Population: Karameikos is a divided land, its majority Traladaran population ruled by the invader Thyatian population. The Traladarans are a very free-spirited people whose dress and names are similar to those of Balkan Europe. The Thyatians are pragmatic and self-centred. With the conquering instincts of the ancient Roman (with their tastes in entertainment, too). The two elements tend to dislike one another greatly.
Specularum: The capital city of Karameikos has a population of 50,000 or more (the Traladarans don't willingly cooperate in the census). It features a great deep-water bay through which much shipping moves, the well-defended royal palace of the Karameikos family, a foreign quarter, a dangerous slum called "The Nest", several merchant districts, the walled-off Duke's Park, and much more.
Threshold: This northern town of 5,000 residents is a logging and farming community surrounded by untamed wilderness. It's an ideal home town for player characters. Threshoid is ruled by Baron Halaran (also known as Patriarch Sherlane, a cleric).
Fort Doom: This is the capital of the Black Eagle Barony, which is ruled by Stefan Karameikos' cousin, Baron Ludwig von Hendriks. Von Hendriks is a dangerous man who terrorizes and brutalizes the populace of his dominion; he also conspires to take the throne of the Grand Duchy. Fort Doom has a population of 10,000.
Adventure Opportunities: The Grand Duchy of Karameikos really is a place of mysteries. So little of it is settled by humans that there is endless opportunity for adventure in the nation's woods and northern mountains. Ancient ruins lie here, long forgotten by the Traladarans and not yet discovered by the Thyatians: There are lairs where vampires lurk; there are caves from which goblin and bugbear raiders harry isolated settlements; there are hidden camps of Traladaran freedom fighters who plot the downfall of Stefan Karameikos.
This country's population consists of two distinct groups: the native Traladarans and their Thyatian conquerors. The names given above belong to the Traladarans, who are the overwhelming majority. for members of the ruling class, use the names given for Thyatia.
In addition to the family names listed above, surnames are often made by adding any of the following suffixes to a given name: -os, -ov, -nov, -na, -eyena, -evich, and -escu. In the decades following the Thyatian invasion, a new generation of mixed parentage has appeared with names drawn from both cultures, but it is too early to tell whether this trend will continue or if the Thyatian veneer will be completely absorbed into the underlying Traladaran culture.
For building characters from the Grand Duchy of Karameikos, .
- Family Social Standing for all characters.
- Character social and military ranks based on background.
Secret Crafts- Masters of Alchemy- Masters of Battle- Masters of the Spirits (Traladaran)- Masters of Undeath
Character ClassesDragonborn (Red, White), Dwarf (Stronghollow), Human (Thyatrian)- Path of the Totem Warrior (Bear, Eagle, Elk as Puma, Wolf) - Human (Traladaran)By Negotiation - Path of the Ancestral Guardian - Human (Traladaran)- Path of the Totem Warrior (Chosen of Taladaran) - Human (Traladaran)Human (Thyatian)By Negotiation - College of Fey Magic - Elf (Vyalia)- Greenleaf College - Elf (Callarii)Human (Thyatian)- Circle of the Moon - Human (Traladaran)Human (Thyatian)- Weapons Master - Human (Thyatian, Traladaran)By Negotiation - Griffon Knight - Human (Thyatian)NPCs Only - Edjet - Dragonborn- Ghost Knight - Human (Traladaran)Human (Thyatian)- Oath of Vengeance - Human (Traladaran)By Agreement - Oath of the Crown - Human (Thyatian)NPCs Only - Oath of the Giving Grave - Human (Traladaran)Human (Traladaran)- Explorer - Human (Thyatian)- Hunter - Human (Traladaran)- Monster Slayer - Human (Thyatian)By Negotiation - Vampire Hunter - Human (Traladaran)NPCs Only:- Zobecker Scout - DragonbornHuman (Traladaran)- Thief - Human (Thyatian)Human (Traladaran)By Negotiation - Dryad Bloodline - Elf (Vyalia)- Nymph Bloodline - Elf (Vyalia)NPCs Only - Lycanthropic Bloodline (Bear, Great Cat, Rat, Wolf) - Human (Traladaran)- Satyr Bloodline - Elf (Vyalia)- Serophage - Human (Thyatian)Elf (Callarii)NPCs Only - Pact of the Black Woods - Elf (Vyalia)- Pact of the Undying - Human (Traladaran)Human (Traladaran)- School of Evocation - Human (Thyatian)- School of Necromancy - Human (Traladaran)NPCs Only - Arcane Tradition of Dragon Masks - Dragonborn- School of Blood Magic - Human (Thyatian)- School of Illumination - Human (Traladaran)
Include Plane Shift Innistrad