The History of Ambitus
Ambitus was formed from the magic within the World’s Well. Whether or not the Gods were the main orchestrators remains to be seen. What we do know about Ambitus is that it is a flat plane. That is, Ambitus is round, but not a sphere. If a boat were to travel from Ambitus’ central continents it could pilot itself to the end.
In the world’s creation. The first race to appear were the dwarves, sculpted from the ground. They were built to be strong, sturdy, and passionate. Creatures that shone just as bright as the iron and mithril they were sculpted from – if only the dirt was washed away.
Then came forth the Gnomes and Halflings, friends of the dwarves, and children of the hills. What the dwarves lacked in play and ingenuity, the gnomes made up for in tricks and innovation. The halflings made up the spirited folk of the plains, strong to family, but weak with progress.
The last races to appear were the elves and humans. One was long lived, the other short. While the elves favored seclusion and continuity, the humans preferred diversity and posterity. It didn’t take long for the elves to serve as the arbiters of knowledge and history, while the humans took up the position of chief owners of Ambitus.
The gods didn’t create the races in Ambitus. In fact, it’s as if the races appeared on their own. The dwarves unearthed themselves from stone, the gnomes and halflings from earth, and the humans and elves from water. They appeared, just as Ambitus did from the World’s Well.
The First Age
Time Span 10,000 Years
The First Two Thousand years
The Dwarves have carved their kingdoms into the stone of Ambitus. Four kingdoms rise up.
1. Iron Kingdom – home to the Iron Throne of Dwarves, and the supplier of all arms and armor in Ambitus. The Iron Kingdom lies west of what will later become the city of Aldanari.
2. Copper Citadel. It still stands mysteriously within the hot fetid islands of the East.
3. The Mithril Kingdom. Home to the worlds greatest fighters and craftsmen. The Mithril kingdom was the second smallest kingdom, but also home of the greatest fighters.
4. Silver Reach. Home to dwarves who mine for silver and coal and destined to fuel the world of tomorrow. Silver Reach is the smallest of the Dwarven kingdoms, but also one of the most promising.
The Gnomes take over the surrounding hills of the Iron Kingdom and migrate east to the sea where they begin to intermingle with the humans of the coast. Still more gnomes begin to spread, their sense of travel is nearly legendary.
The Elves take up secluded glens within the forests east and west of the Iron Mountains. The Serpent Coil begins to take shape as a cosmopolitan landscape of elves, gnomes, dwarves, and humans.
Humans create two kingdoms alongside the other races.
1. The Northern Kingdom – An Alabaster Gem in a hot and vast desert. The Northern Kingdom is created around a river that supplies the entire desert with its water. The kingdom is run by a dynasty of kings and queens – overseen by brilliant wizards and sorcerers. This royal dynasty is called the Sapphire bloodline for their legendary ability to control the water supply.
2. The City of Aldanari – The capitol of Ambitus, for now remains nothing more than a city on the coast north of the Serpent Coil and East of the Iron Mountains. It is the smallest and most predominantly human cities in Ambitus.
The Clerics of Pelor start to spread throughout the southern parts of Ambitus. The Dwarven Gods still hold supreme throughout most of the world, with Pelor and the almost non-existent Chiron knights serving more as secondary gods.
The Northern Kingdom worships Boccab and also features a realm of predominantly ambiguous faiths.
The Last Eight Thousand Years
1. The Iron Kingdom begins a war with the Mithril Kingdom. The entire Serpent Coil remains neutral, but the forces of the surrounding countryside ally themselves with the Iron Kingdom. The Iron Kingdom and Mithril Kingdom end up halving each others size and the Mithril Kingdom nearly collapses from internal wars with its rival dwarf clans.
2. The Northern Kingdom fights a trade war with Aldanari. The Northern Kingdom flaunts a plethora of spices and exotic materials, while Aldanari becomes the biggest grain producer of any city in Ambitus.
3. The Dwarves of Silver Reach begin an age transcending war with strangely organized kobolds.
- The Mithril Kingdom is cut in half – making it possibly the smallest of the Dwarven Kingdoms. Dwarven Clans begin to fight over what remains, the front gates of the Mithril Kingdom lock shut in order to protect against outsiders.
- The Northern Kingdom is beset with war against beast-like monsters of the desert. The Kings of the Desert Kingdom become increasingly more insane and unpredictable.
- The Iron Kingdom is cut nearly in half, what’s left is dismantled and sealed from a collapsing economy. The Iron King Thane had drained the coffers gold in an effort to defeat his Mithril brothers.
- The Copper Citadel goes silent.
The Second Age
Time Span 7,000 Years
The First 1000 Years: The Rise of Asmodeous
Time Period: First Millennium 2A
Known as the War of Asmodeous
In the absence of strong and moral power from the nearly absent gods, evil rises up from the cold wastes to the south and the hot dunes of the North. Asmodeous followers, originally only cultists in the first age are now a legitimate faith with clerics and Dread Lords. The followers only number in maybe one-hundred, but as a result of their immense power they are able to bring together the evil beasts and people of Ambitus.
1. The Iron Kingdom is beset by Orc and goblin war bands. Giants and trolls number amongst their ranks.
2. The Northern Kingdom quickly falls under control of evil wizards and sorcerers who rule through use of blood and necromancy magic. These spell casters eventually fall under the sway of the blue dragon Fret. Fret eventually lays waste to the Alabaster Gem and severs the Sapphire dynasty.
3. The Mithril Kingdom goes silent.
4. The Serpent Coil beings a war against kobolds and horrifying mortal races. Armies of undead rise up from the northern wastes and quickly sweep over and destroy Ravenloft and other towns. Rumors of a white dragon that migrated from the southern tundra Mithril kingdom are foolishly disregarded, this dragon lies deep within the kobold’s kingdom..
5. Aldanari is periodically attacked by Suhuagin and power hungry mortals, but is otherwise overlooked by the greater forces that be.
The Next 2,000 Years: The Lightbringers
Time Period: 2nd-3rd Millennium 2A
1. The Hordes of Undead from the Serpent Coil are overcome by Ardeglais Chiron Paladins. They drive the undead away from the besieged Silver Reach. The freed Dwarven Kingdom proceeds to take back the entire mountain range alongside the newly empowered Lightbringers.
2. Chiron followers restablish order in Aldanari and start to spread their influence out to the neighboring Iron Kingdom.
3. Red Dragon Fardor destroys most of the Iron Kingdom and establishes control of entire mountain range.
4. The Serpent Coil holds the southern front of undead armies until they mysteriously stop encroaching.
5. Lightbringers and Iron Dwarves put down the marauding Red Dragon Fardor. Fardor was the most powerful of all the Dragons – the candle that burns twice as bright last half as long.
The Next 2,000 Years: The Spark of Revival
Time Period: 4th-5th Millennium 2A
The war is at a stalemate. The Serpent Coil, Iron Kingdom, and Aldanari are all that is left, they maintain a control of the Northern and Southern fronts. While the Northern Kingdom is still under control of Fret, he is growing to the point of death, infighting and anarchy is what remains of the sandy realm of ancient kings. At this point the northern kingdom hasn’t felt the presence of a king in thousands of years. A new force has risen in response to the Lightbringer’s rise to dominance – Dormric Blood Knights.
1. Blood Knights in servitude to the young god Dormric, begin to create organized armies of mortals who have switched sides. Asmodeous followers act as the orchestrator and designers of the otherwise weak anti-paladins.
2. Fret dies of old age and full anarchy takes hold of the northern kingdom.
3. The Serpent Coil resumes trade and operation despite the occasional attacks by monsters and blood knights, by this point the Serpent Coil has proven to be an old and tested battleground.
4. The Iron Kingdom liberate most of the Northern Kingdom.
The Next 1,000 Years: The Return to Light
Time Period: 6th Millennium 2A
The war against the Asmodeous Followers and the Blood Knights dies to petty conflicts. The cooling war allows the forces of good to expand and rebuild their towns and cities. Aldanari in particular becomes the capitol and strong standing facet in Ambitus.
- The Iron Kingdom Rebuilds back to about 3/4ths of it’s original size.
- The Northern Kingdom returns to its strong monarchy roots with a new line of kings who eliminated the competition in the anarchy. This new line of kings is called the Crimson Kings (successors to the Alabastar Line).
- The Serpent Coil staggers on after it’s war against the frozen south. The cold and foggy interior of the Serpent Coil masks its more sinister qualities, while the rest of Ambitus moves on amongst it’s wars. The more typical blood knights and soldiers are strangely absent from this part of the world.
- Silver Reach, the main entity in the Serpent Coil, continues to build and delve into its heavy silver and coal deposits. Silver Reach acts as the golden city of the Serpent Coil in place of Aldanari due to the mountain range’s relative isolation.
- New forces rise up within Aldanari. The Aurum Conservator who make up the rich investors of Aldanari and descendents of the Mithril Kingdom. The Far Road Guild evolves from renewed trade with the Northern Kingdom. The trade routes are still dangerous from Blood Knights and evil monstrous humanoids, thereby forcing a reliance on the strong resources of The Far Road who are made up of the richer guilds. The Architects also gain a remarkable foothold from the demand of new roads and buildings.
- The Eastern islands become individual regions ruled by lords, nobles, and city-states after the Copper Citadel went quiet in the first age. Expeditions are made by wealthy Aldanari and Iron Kingdom men and women, but never return.
- The Mithril Kingdom remains silent. All that is left of the Mithril Dwarves and other races exists as extended families who migrated before the collapse in the first part of the second age.
The Last 1000 Years: The Revival of Asmodeous
Time Period: 7th Millennium 2A
Known as the Ambitus War
The war had gone silent in the the second half of the 2nd age. The Lightbringers, having fought monsters for centuries had assumed victory over the Asmodeous followers, but were betrayed by their own optimism.
1. Devils and bands of humans begin to invade the Northern Kingdom. Young sorcerers and worshipers of Fret lead the foot soldiers and traitors within the Northern Kingdom’s capitol.
2. Great rusting iron ships lay siege to the crown jewel of Ambitus. Devils and sea monsters pour out of the ocean’s depths.
3. Blood Knights smash the Iron Kingdom into fragments using armies of clerics and warriors. Devils and other monsters act as foot soldiers to more powerful sorcerers and clerics.
4. The Blood Knight armies pour into the forests and plains around Aldanari from the Iron Mountains and Hills.
5. The Serpent Coil goes silent when monsters around Ravenloft and the regions ancient battlegrounds start to tear the towns and villages from the inside out. An ancient white dragon by the name of Salid attacks and takes over Silver Reach using Kobolds as her foot soldiers. The dwarves of Silver Reach are exiled and forced to flee to the surrounding villages.
The Last 500 Years: Rise and Fall of the Heroes
The heroes rise up during the second major war. The Serpent Coil was relatively calm in comparison to the rest of Ambitus. The exploits of the Heroes continue on for the next five-hundred years, with the third age starting with Fatum’s death.
1. Algrim Marbleforge brings together a company of two-hundred men three hundred years after the fall of Silver Reach. Amongst this company is the paladin, Fatum; the rogue, Saiker Calum; the cleric, Albatros; and the wizard, Kazeer.
2. The adventuring company disappears for over six months.
3. The party reappears as the sole survivors of the Silver Reach expedition. The party proceeds to adventure in the Serpent Coil, liberating towns and villages that had fallen under evil control.
4. The party explores in the frozen south and returns unparalleled to anyone else in Ambitus.
5. The party liberates Aldanari, the Iron Mountain, and the Northern Kingdom.
6. The party disbands. Algrim, Saiker Calum, and Albatross disappear.
7. Kazeer exiles himself into obscurity while Fatum becomes emperor of Aldanari till the third age.
Towards the end of the second age, significant changes start to unravel.
- The clerics and followers of Asmodeous lose their divine powers. The reason for Asmodeous’s abandonment is a mystery. Without his powers the war against the Asmodeous followers and their minions quickly ends.
- Technology accelerates rapidly from the discoveries of Kazeer. His designs and inventions are spread by wizards and alchemists who admire and seek to replicate his work. Some alchemists genuinely respect Kazeer while others only seek to rival his power.
- Silver Reach remains unsaved. The Mithril Kingdom and Copper Citadel lies dormant and forgotten in the southern tundra and eastern islands. Only research through ancient tomes and archeology reveals anything beyond common myth.
The Third Age
The Present Age
It has only been six-hundred years into the third age, and very little has happened. Aldanari is an ancient and dying empire. The Iron Kingdom is less an empire and more of a conglomerate of dwarven settlements. The Northern Kingdom still staggers as it did centuries before. Had it not been for the brief stability brought on by the legendary heroes, the Northern Kingdom might have descended into anarchy again. Silver Reach is gone, The Mithril Kingdom is gone, and The Copper Citadel isn’t believed to be a tangible place anymore.
Asmodeous followers are an ancient but distant nightmare, it appears that the Lord of the Nine Hells, Asmodeous, has turned his back on them. Without strong leadership the Blood Knights in Servitude of Dormric have begun to lead themselves with occasional success.
The Lightbringers have turned their attention to maintaining control over the kingdom, but they’ve become increasingly irrelevant without someone to protect against Asmodeous.
In many ways, this age can be seen as the time of post-heroes (the third age began fou hundred years after Fatum died). Followers and researchers of Kazeer and his works have taken on the name of Alchemist’s, although they lack the direction or organization to truly pursue his discoveries.