Solis Umbra: Wildfire
Welcome to the inaugural game in the new Solis Umbra campaign setting!
If you’re new to Solis Umbra, don’t worry, an extensive (or even cursory) knowledge of the world is not necessary; you will have a perfectly valid in-game excuse for knowing nothing about the world or recent history.
Solis Umbra: Wildfire takes place in the dark fantasy setting of Vulcanica. Though believed to once have been a paradise for all living things, Vulcanica has become a horrible and hostile place, torn by misery and corrupted by strife. Its most defining characteristic is the shadow sun—the titular solis umbra—a twisted orb that casts its cold and pale light onto the world, and serves as a horrible reminder that no matter how hard you try, things will never truly be good in this world.
The game will begin in a prison known as Liakha Rock. A dark and miserable place even by Vulcanica’s standards, there are few people here who have any hope of ever seeing the outside world again. Formed out of an ancient cave system long abandoned by its previous occupants, Liakha Rock’s prisoners are denied even Solis Umbra’s cold light as they toil endlessly in the dark and dangerous mines. This miserable place is your home; the only home you have ever known. You have never been outside Liakha Rock (or, if you are particularly ancient, you have been here so long that you have no memory of the outside world). Though you have never known better, you are still able to understand how miserable this life is, and you long to know about what lies beyond Liakha Rock. You’ve heard tales of the horrid sunlight, and you still yearn to feel its cold light. You are well aware of the darkness and dangers that lie above the surface, and yet you find yourself drawn to it like a moth to flame. You long to be free. You must be free.
You should start thinking of what kind of character you would like to play in this game. You do not need to have anything set in stone, as the first session of the game will be character creation, but it will be helpful if you arrive with an idea or two of things that you think might be fun. Here’s a few tidbits to get you started:
There are four peoples in Vulcanica: Ashen, Breathless, Slade, and Volsung.
- Ashen are chaotic beings who embody the spirit of change. Tall and flame-licked in appearance, everything about the Ashen—their height, their hair, their facial structure, even their gender—is in a constant state of flux. Capricious and unpredictable, the Ashen are known for being as flighty and nomadic as they are friendly and passionate. Short-lived and short-tempered, Ashen are symbolized by fire. If you are Ashen, you hatched in Liakha Rock (and therefore, were there in a previous life).
- Breathless are a living reminder of the misery and loss that everyone in Vulcanica has suffered. Though they were once Volsung who lived and died, the twisted light of the shadow sun has returned them to walk this world once more, though with only fragments of the memories and personalities they once had. Defined by suffering and haunted by a broken mind, Breathless are symbolized by dust. If you are Breathless, you awoke in Liakha Rock.
- Slade are physically massive beings of stone. Stoic and stern, the Slade are known to be fiercely loyal and highly resistant to change. They do not age, and many alive today claim to have been among the first to ever walk Vulcanica. Vulcanica’s eternal keepers, the Slade are symbolized by stone. If you are Slade, you should come up with your own reasons for both a: being in Liakha Rock and b: having no real memory of the outside world (a few tidbits is fine, but nothing substantial).
- Volsung are the small and adaptive survivors of Vulcanica. Known for their resourcefulness and strong sense of community, the Volsung place great value in courage and lifting up others. Despite their clear magical and physical disadvantages when compared to the other peoples, the Volsung seem to be more than capable of holding their own against far greater foes. Refusing to ever be defined by others, Volsung are symbolized by the wind. If you are Volsung, you were born in Liakha Rock.
There are some other things that your character might be aware of, though their knowledge on these matters will be limited at best:
- There is magic in this world. In fact, there is quite a bit of it, though it is difficult and dangerous to use for anyone who is not well-trained, and it does not come naturally. Furthermore, it seems as though each of the peoples have their own magics that only they can access. That being said, the nature of Liakha Rock makes magic very rare, as anyone with that kind of magic rarely gets thrown in a place like this.
- The mineral you harvest, a rock known as Brannite, is valuable to those who run the mine. It gives off a faint glow (enough to illuminate your way in the darkness), and its light can be used to transmute otherwise inedible materials into food. You have no idea how that works, though, and any prisoners caught stealing Brannite are usually killed or severely beaten.