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System: Dungeons and Dragons 3.5 Edition

Hook: Heroes working for a semi-secret society attempt to stop the End-of-the-World™.



After the Great Sundering, the lich Damador was cast down and the terrible artefact he had forged, the magical staff Eschaton, was split into four pieces and carefully hidden. While the Gods remade the universe into the Great Wheel, a mortal society sprung up to protect the four parts from other immoral beings. The Warden, the Lawbringer, the Sage and the King all left the ruins of the lich's tomb with one part of the staff.

The Warden travelled south to the Orcish land of Ga'Kath, trusting the rune-carved base of the staff to the royal line of Kath. The Lawbringer took the middle of the staff, where the lich's skeletal handprints still smouldered, and disappeared into the desert of Urbar. He carried himself and the artefact from history, through myth states he lived nomadically on the good will of the desert states. The King reclaimed the focusing crystal, said to have been the length and thickness of your forearm, and went to the halls of the Dwarven Kings to retake his throne and lead the defence of their mountain homes. The Sage returned the tip of the staff, a mithril mounting, to the Elves that Damador had commissioned it from, and returned to her life of quiet study.

In a depressingly short time, others came seeking the artefacts. After some time word alone were not deterrent enough and rulers saw the need for perpetual guardians. The Watchtower was formed, an organization spanning the continent and concerned only with the safe-keeping of the pieces. Even today the Watchers continue their work, though greatly diminished since the old times. Many of their number serve in capacities beyond guards, working as merchants or diplomats (or spies). Their ranks have shrunk as the artefacts go undisturbed for generations, and in the minds of most people an archaic tradition from darker times.

Guarding the way to Ga'Kath's northern fens is the citadel called Clarion. It is built on top of (and into) a steep cliff, and those seeking to lawfully pass into Ga'Kath must pass through its basalt gates. The Dwarves are spread thin throughout the roots of the world, holding their soaring halls and endless mines against the onslaught of goblin warrens. Those of note are Fortress Razorbraid, Fortress Autumn and the Halls of the Dwarven King. The Elven lands are simply one large forest to the untrained eye, for the Elves retain much of their fey nature and forsake the outside world. They are enigmatic creatures and present no target for their enemies to attack. Of all the Watchers, the Elves promise the least, knowing their impulsive natures the best. West of the deep forests, north of the fenlands, but east of the burning sands of Urbar begin the human nations. They are many and fractious, with fluid borders dependent on diplomacy and war. The Watchers have no great fortresses here, and have slowly evolved into a wide-reaching and wandering police force.

The (Greyhawk) deities are largely worshipped as a pantheon. Many of the more sinister religions are illegal and have been driven underground (figuratively, though sometimes literally). Gruumsh is less of a jerk than one would expect (chaotic neutral) and does not have the Evil domain.

Allowed Sources[edit]

Complete Adventurer
Complete Arcane
Complete Champion
Complete Divine
Complete Mage
Complete Psionic
Complete Scoundrel
Complete Warrior
Dungeon Master's Guide 3.5e
Expanded Psionics Handbook
Magic Item Compendium
Monster Manual #1 3.5e (Orcs are fine and 'usually neutral', ask for anything else)
Player's Handbook #1 3.5e
Spell Compendium