Cultures of the Age of Empires

Copyright Peter Mork © 2017

The great island continent of Perdu lies to the east of Percoland. This continent is home to the lost tribes of Kur. Kobolds were the first to arrive. Later, the Lost traversed the River of the Void following the lure of great secrets from Qod to Perdu. The tribe that remained (the Lost of the Lost) is known as the missing tribe, which can still be found in Qod. Finally, the Hidden refer to those people (generally human, but not necessarily) that follow the True Gods (Urlocs).

Lost & Missing

Lifestyle

Historically, the Lost were a nomadic people. Relying on their mastery of Impulse (Essence) magic, they roamed the shores of Qod. The Missing continue this nomadic lifestyle. The Lost, threatened by the megafauna, dinosaurs, kobolds, and Hidden have hunkered down. Instead of roaming far and wide, the Lost send out Bone Scouts to explore.

Most familiar with the shores, the Lost & Missing forage along the coast. The bulk of their protein comes from fish and shellfish, augmented with shore birds and small game that they hunt with woomera. When resources are plentiful, they spend a couple of hours each day gathering food and raw materials. The remainder of their time is spent crafting and socializing. On Perdu, with less ability to roam, more time is spent foraging.

All of the Lost & Missing and missing are familiar with bone runes. This technology allows their casters to imbed spells in a specially crafted piece of bone. When the pattern is traced (with a successful Read Runes maneuver), the spell is released. These bone runes are stockpiled, especially in Perdu.

In Perdu, the Lost eventually learn to ride prehistoric beasts. Their preferred beast of burden is the giant ground sloth (treated as an elephant). They can also tame the other beasts listed in Creatures & Monsters.

Clothing

The Lost & Missing stitch together the furs of any game that they manage to take down (treated as Soft Leather). In Qod, they tend to be barefoot, but in Perdu, they need moccasins or boots because of the harsher weather. They decorate their clothing with beads fashioned from bones and dyed.

Marriage

Marriage is not a custom the Lost & Missing recognize.

Religion

The Lost & Missing recognize the existence of spirits. They do not worship these spirits. Instead, Lost & Missing casters experiment with Magic Rituals that allow them to bend the spirits to their will.

When someone dies, they hold an elaborate funeral ceremony. A huge pyre is built to burn the body while tales of the deceased are told. This often turns into a competition to spin the wildest yarn with some kernel of truth to it. Most funerals conclude with an orgy.

Fears

These people are not afraid of their neighbors (in Qod or Perdu), but they know from experience that they are not loved. Valued, tolerated, and sometimes even trusted. But never loved. Thus, the Lost & Missing tend to remain diplomatically cool to outsiders.

Kobolds

Lifestyle

The Kobolds were the first to arrive in Perdu. (Of course the Hidden were already there, but they remained, well, hidden). They have since spread out across the southern cliffs, which provide protection from lowland predators and winter habitats.

From spring to autumn, Kobolds live above ground in brick forts that back onto the cliffs. They spend this time tending their crops and hunting. When winter arrives, they abandon their surface homes and crowd into the caves.

In addition to earthen walls, pots, and farming, the Kobolds are familiar with mining. They tend to carry javelins for hunting and scouting and axes when fighting. Territorial wars are a common summer passtime.

Kobolds weave cloth from which they fashion pants whose length varies by season. In cold weather (or when fighting), they add long padded coats that double as armor.

Hidden

Lifestyle

The Hidden represent the various people that worship the True Gods. While most Urlocs strive to remain hidden from the gods, some have become more bold and have styled themselves the True Gods. These Urlocs quietly gather the lost throughout Kur (children abandoned at birth, lone travellers kidnapped on the road, etc.). Their followers are the Hidden.

Clothing

The Hidden all wear long cloaks in neutral colors over similarly bland shifts. Individuality interferes with their sacred mission to see to the True Gods' needs.

Marriage

The Urloc do not interfere in marriage. Given the eclectic mix of races, marriage has made for some strange offspring indeed.

Religion

The Hidden worship the True Gods. They learn technology tricks from the True Gods. They are especially dismissive of ritual magic. The True Gods know that the gods will eventually find them; they hope to amass enough magical power to force a truce.

Fears

The Hidden are afraid of nothing. They know the True Gods will protect them. The True Gods are generally afraid of premature discovery.

Skills

Available Skills

The following skills are available to the Lost & Missing. (The Hidden have access to essentially every skill, should the True Gods grant them the knowledge.)

Skill Category Skill Note
Armor • Light Soft Leather
Artistic • Active Acting
Artistic • Active Mimery
Artistic • Active Mimicry
Artistic • Active Play Instrument: Percussion
Artistic • Passive Drawing
Artistic • Passive Painting
Artistic • Passive Poetry
Awareness • Searching Reading Tracks
Awareness • Searching Tracking
Combat Maneuvers Mounted Combat
Crafts Animal-crafts
Lore • Obscure Faerie Lore
Outdoor • Animal Riding Specific skills include Aerial, Aquatic, Arthropods, Artificial Being, Carnivorous, Construct, Dangerous Herbivores, Draft, Elemental, Flying Monster, Great Drake, Hybrid Elemental, Land Monster, Lesser Drake, Minor Drake, Passive Herbivores, Reptile/Amphibian, Unearthly, Water Monster (see Creatures & Monsters and Fire & Ice)
Power Awareness Read Runes
Power Manipulation Spell Mastery
Power Manipulation Targeting
Resistance Impulse Resistance
Spells • Impulse Open Lists Delving Ways
Spells • Impulse Open Lists Detecting Ways
Spells • Impulse Open Lists Elemental Shields
Spells • Impulse Open Lists Essence Hand
Spells • Impulse Open Lists Essence's Perceptions
Spells • Impulse Open Lists Lesser Illusions
Spells • Impulse Open Lists Physical Enhancement
Spells • Impulse Open Lists Rune Mastery
Spells • Impulse Open Lists Spell Wall
Spells • Impulse Open Lists Unbarring Ways

Starting Skills

Category or Skill Lost Missing Kobold Hidden
Armor • Light 1 1 1
    Soft Leather 1 1
    Textile 1
Artistic • Active 1 1
    Tale Telling 1 1
Athletic • Brawn 1 1 1
Athletic • Endurance 2 2 1
    Scaling 1
    Swimming 2 2
Athletic • Gymnastics 1 1 3
    Climbing 1 1 3
Awareness • Perceptions 0 0 0 0
    Alertness 2 2 2 2
Awareness • Searching 2 2 1 1
    Observation 2 2 1 1
Awareness • Senses 3 3
    Direction Sense 3 3
Body Development 0 0 0 0
    Concussion Hits 1 1 1 1
    Exhaustion Points 0 0 0 0
Combat Maneuvers 0 0 0
    Blind Fighting 2
    Mounted Combat 2 2
Communications: Interstitial 5
    Urloc (S) 9
    Urloc (W) 7
Communications: Kalyon 3
Communications: Kish 2
Communications: Kur 1 3
    Kobold (S) 5 5
Communications: Reali 2
Communications: Turami 2 2 3
    Turami (W) 1 1
    Turo (S) 5 5
Communications: Ubon 1 2
    Drayim (S) 3
Communications: Wrin 1
Crafts 0 0 0
    Animal-crafts 3 2
    Earth-crafts 2
    Food-crafts 3
    Rope-crafts 3
    Stone-crafts 2
    Textile-crafts 2
    Wood-crafts 2 3 1
Influence 2 2
    Diplomacy 1 2
    Trading 2 2
Lore • General 3 3 3 3
    Culture Lore: Kurian 3
    Culture Lore: Perdu 3 3 3
    Culture Lore: Qod 1
    Fauna Lore 2 2
    Flora Lore 2 2
    History 2 2
    Region Lore: Perdu 3 3 3
    Region Lore: Qod 3
Lore • Technical 2
    Stone Lore 2
Mundane Defenses 0 0 0 0
    Dodge 0 0 2 0
    Parry 0 0 0 0
    Shield 0 0 0 0
Outdoor • Animal 3 3
    Animal Training: Draft 1 1
    Riding: Draft 3 3
Outdoor • Environmental 3 3 2
    Caving 2
    Fishing 2 2
    Foraging 2 2
    Survival: Saltwater shore (S) 3 3
Power Awareness 2 2
    Read Runes 2 2
Power Point Development 0 0 0 0
    Power Points 0 0 0 3
Reflexes 0 0 0 0
    Initiative 0 0 0 0
Resistance 0 0 0 0
    Critical Resistance 0 0 0 0
    Disease Resistance 1 1 1 1
    Divine Resistance 0 0 0 2
    Fear Resistance 1 1 1 1
    Impulse Resistance 1 1 0 2
    Poison Resistance 1 1 1 1
    Psychic Resistance 0 0 0 2
Spells • Divine Open Lists 0
    Sound's Way 1
Spells • Impulse Open Lists 0
    Sustain Body 2
Spells • Psychic Open Lists 0
    Anticipations 2
Spells • Techno Open Lists 0
    Realm Law 1
Subterfuge • Stealth 1 1 3
    Hiding 1 1 3
    Stalking 1 1 3
Technical/Trade • General 1 1 1 2
    First Aid 1 1
    Operating Equipment 2
    Rope Mastery 2
    Trailblazing 2 1
Technical/Trade • Professional 0
    Mining 1
Weapon • Chopping 1
    Axe 1
Weapon • Crushing 1 1
    Sticks 1 1
Weapon • Pole Arms 1
    Spear 1
Weapon • Thrown 2 2 2
    Direct Thrown 1
    Sling 2 2 2
Hobbies 2 2 4 12
Everyman Skills Mounted Combat
Trailblazing
Diplomacy
Mounted Combat
Rope Mastery Sustain Body
Cost [1] 21 22.8 9.2 15.2

[1] To determine a character’s background options, add up the racial cost and the culture cost (9.2–22.8). Convert that total into talent points or background options using Talent Law.