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Encyclopdedia Eternica



last updated: Sunday, November 25, 2001

Note: this is just one possible way of getting a start on building a Kingdom/Culture, and you need not fill in every detail (especially at first). Also, game players may or may not ever need to know a lot of these details, but the more YOU know, the more you can round out your story/game/environment....
Information is red is what is specifically required for the Runesword (I) system
Information in blue is also particularly useful

I. Basic Kingdom Infomation
Kingdom Name: Gual
Kingdom Quote: Gaul is the land of thieves and pirates, as well as a few shipwrights. Their boating expertise, however, tends toward the small and quick sloops and pinnaces, the better to terrorize the merchant marine of other lands. There is no recognized government in Gaul.
[*Sub-Culture: (specific clan, sect, etc.)][*note if this is the particular group this info sheet applies to]
[What the Native Peoples Call Themselves (if different than Kingdom name):]
Size of Territory:
[Time Period: (if applicable)]

Inter-Kingdom Relations:
[Border Countries/relations:]
[Relation with Jafra/emperor: in favor, dis-favor, etc.]
At War/Conflict with: (include details if applicable)
Treaties/Positive Relations with: (include details if applicable)
Reputation/Stereotype: (how other kingdoms view this people)

Physical Environment:
General Terrain:
    [Coastal? (if so, is it a navigable coast?)]
"Common" Natural Disasters: (e.g. active volcano, tornado zone, monsoon season, etc.)
Other Notable Features/Concerns: (e.g. highest mt on continent, barrier reef on coast)

II. Individual Citizens (Characters)
Physical/Racial Characteristics
Standard Game Stats:
     Health:                 Strength:
     Agility:                 Action Points (AP):
     Will:                     Body (size):
Special Resistances: (cold/fire/sharp,etc., with % resisted)
Life Expectancy:
 % mortality at:
       infancy     childhood     adolescence     young adult      middle age     old age
       (*should equal 100% for total population)

Notable Skills/Occupations:
Typical (Stereotypic) Occupations:
Available Skills for Characters (at Creation):

III. Social Issues
Standard (Character) Vice Scores:
        Luna                Pride
        Revel               Greed
        Wrath              Lust
(higher number = worse weakness, average is 18)

Family Relations
Family unit: (nuclear, extended, multi-generational, etc.)
    courtship and marriage: (individual choice, arranged by family/other)
    living arrangements: (move in with/near groom's family? bride's family? on own? variable?)
        traditional responsibilities:
        effect(s) on social status: (does having more kids/sons/daughters give you a social advantage?)
        traditional responsibilities:
        effect(s) on social status: (does having more kids/sons/daughters give you a social advantage?)
            traditional responsibilities:
            education: (formal, informal, and vocational)
            birth order issues: (social value, birthright/inheritance, responsibility to family members)
            traditional responsibilities:
            education: (formal, informal, and vocational)
            birth order issues: (social value, birthright/inheritance, responsibility to family members)
            what defines "old age": (actual age? generation?)
            traditional responsibilities:
            care of the infirm/senile: (responsibility of family? community? individual?)
                widows: (revered and cared for? cast out? pitied? other?)

Social Castes / Groups:
        types / basis (birthright, wealth, education, religion, occupation, etc.)
            For each Caste: social status
                                     social responsibilities
        possibilities/consequences of crossing caste lines:
            how rigid/formal are caste definitions?
            can someone's caste change? how?
            are mixed marriages permitted? probable?

Major Religion / Religions:
    Diety / dieties:
    Other super-natural beings: (angels, demons, spirits, ghosts, Saints, ancestors, etc.)
    Role of magic in this society: (namely, which schools/branches are available to characters)
    Answers to the Big Questions:
        where did we come from?
        why are we here?
        what happens after we die?
        how much control do we have of our own destiny? as individuals? as a people?
    priorities: (is the emphasis on rites/rituals? proselyting/conversion? service? tithes/offerings?)
    value system: (what is most important: honor, faith, service, courage, honesty, cunning, wisdom, etc.)
    taboos: (what is forbidden? how strong are the taboos and what are perceived/actual consequences for violation of such?)
        (others: include frequency as well as nature of ceremony)
    holidays/holy days

Community Life
    General Community Style: (towns/cities, small villages, nomadic, etc.)
    Types of dwellings and buildings: (individual homes; communal living - by gender, family group, or whatever; apartment-like; family compounds; etc.)
    Most Common Means of  Economic Support: (farm, fish/hunt, forage, skilled labor, trade, military/religious service)(adding a % of people/families supported by each general category might be handy)
            Other (less common) Occupations:
    Local Money/Barter System:

Domestic Government:
Kingdom-Level Government system: (who holds ultimate authority?)
[Any figurehead/traditional but non-functional government positions?]
Local Government System: (who actually runs a town/village/clan/etc.?)
[Religious Influence on Government:]
Law Enforcement/Judicial:
    Kingdom vs. Local:
    [Religious Influence on Judicial:]
    Definition and Consequences of Serious Crime:
         (murder, sexual crimes, battery, larceny, lying/fraud)
    If detention is a possible punishment, how is this handled?
    Rights of Accuser and Accused? (and who has burden of proof?)
    How are "outsider" (non-resident) criminals handled?
        If fugitive from another Kingdom? (extradition?)

Miscellaneous "Color"
        What place does formal "art for art's sake" have in this society?
        What folk-arts exist? (folk art = a practical item made beautiful - like a quilt, furniture, clothes, pottery, or whatever)
        (Note: this definition of folk art is my own arbitrary decision for the purposes of this document only. I have taken various college courses on the topic, and the debate over what defines "folk art" versus "fine art" and so on is complicated and seemingly endless....)
        Are art objects a trade item?

        Is this region known for a particular culinary style? (describe it)
                If so, how famous?
        Is this region a supplier of any rare foods/delicacies? (could be anything from truffles to opium)

        Standard Costume: (list any difference in male/femal garb, etc.)
        Any religious significance/relationship?
        Function vs. Fashion: (likely to be related to wealth)
        Is the region known for a particular clothing style?
        Is Cloth or Clothing a significant trade item?

    Other Possible Considerations:
        Animal Husbandry: