Saturday, July 15, 2017

Monvesian Culture: Elfish Gender

Since the creation of the setting, the elves of Monvesia have been a sexual other.  Though there was an elf character in the first campaign, his player merely played him as a sexual addict and predator.  A valid interpretation of the race, particularly for a faun among humans, but not the ideal representation. The magnitude of elfish sexuality and gender always hung at the back of my mind, undeveloped beyond cohorts and mentorships.  By exploring the nature of half-elves in Monvesia, the following was developed.
Gender is a cultural concept related to physical sex, but not bound to it.  Layered within gender are separate concepts of gender identity/expression and gender role [keep in mind, I am over-simplifying]. Among the humans of Monvesia, issues concerning sex and gender are comparable to the same in modern society.  These issues repeat in pretty much the same way among dwarves, gnomes, rakasta, and goliaths--where cultural norms are basically the same with minor variation.  Among elves, however, there is greater variation.

The elves of Monvesia are have a more striking sexual dimorphism than other races in the world--males (fauns) and females (nymph)  have drastic physical differences beyond their sexual organs.  Because of this, the race has somewhat rigid gender roles--and the two sexes even live in their own communities.  A third sex (lares) also lives among the other two, with far more muted features than their exotic counterparts.  Until puberty, however, these differences are virtually irrelevant--for prepubescent elves have no physical sex.  They have no distinguishable sexual organs or secondary characteristics.  Juvenile elves just look like rounder, squatter versions of their mothers ... without flowers or leaves in their hair.

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Factions of Monvesia: Purifiers & the Fifth Sphere

While not mechanically part of the game until 5th edition, even my original BD&D incarnation of Monvesia included something akin to Factions.  Six religious orders, one for each temperament, had influence over the local area of the Honderreich:
  • Order of Saint Jostin [Altruist, ally], which has become one of the independent Orders of the Northern Triad
  • Divine Order of the Rose and Shield [Materialist, antagonist], an independent order which has moved to Gierland
  • Chroniclers of the River [Dynamist, neutral], a relatively minor player that has remained in obscurity--though has come to represent Anceint orders
  • Universal Order of Spiritual Thought [Idealist, neutral], part of the Universal Orders in Communion with Sena
  • Society of Saint Ignatius [Vitalist, ally], which has become one of the independent Orders of the Northern Triad
  • Disciples of the Fifth Sphere [Nihilist, antagonist], once identified as an indepenant order, it had never really been a priestly or crusader organization; this faction now appears below

With the two new additions below, the modern factions of Monvesia still follow a temperamental distinction.  Unlike the original factions of the Honderreicher Minor Baronies, these new factions are not outwardly religious in nature.  Each as a unique perspective on history, and has unique goals toward shaping the future.

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Return to Monvesia

While I have been happily (and sporadically) posting about Monvesia for ... goodness me ... two years now, I have done so as a way of exploring the Dungeons & Dragons 5th edition rules.  But, I now have the chance to actually run a game in this world again.  The best part?  A player asked to play in this world. Before I can run the game, however, I need to revisit what I have established for the setting, and decide if I have truly gone in the right direction with it.

Simply put, it is time for a retcon.

So much has been released for 5th edition since I last posted an adaptation.  So many options have already been folded into the world that make it seem a bit ... unwieldy.  While I don't need to revisit everything, there are some key elements that I will need to re-adapt.  Below, I will review some of the simplest ones.

Related image

Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Monvesian Great Old Ones

The warlock entry in "Mages of Monvesia" offered the briefest look at the Great Old Ones of Monvesia--a class of beings called the HMDJVNW (pronounced "am-DIV-new"), which had once been worshiped by ancient humans and goliaths in their homeland of Desolation.  Seven HMDJVNW were named in that early post, but little else was offered beyond these names and an epithet each.

In this post, I will take some time to explore each of the HMDJVNW, including their individual roles in the world of Monvesia.
Behind the Scenes:  The name HMDJVNW is an adaptation of the initialism AMDIVNU--the the seven Temperaments, including Universalism.  Originally, AMDIVNU (whose name is always capitalized, and never replaced with a pronoun) was only one Great Old One; and AMDIVNU was once considered was the "god" of mages (or at least the originator of magic, see ENSHZRYD).  As the history of goliaths and humans has evolved with the setting, so has AMDIVNU also evolved--into the HMDJVNW.