ERAS CHRONICLES

Worldbuilding Wednesday Pt. 4 - Creatures


A Wingwalker, by Julia DeVito

The world of Eras is full of creatures both mundane and magical, some passive or even friendly, others dangerous or aggressive. We can guarantee that your character will encounter at least some of these wild creatures in-game, but it is up to you to decide how to interact with them. There is much to learn in-game about each and every creature, either from pure observation of behavior or doing a little bit of digging amongst the strolls. Be careful which ones you let see watching you though.


Arachnids: There are two major species of arachnids found in the Kordi Nation: violin and black velvet. Although immediately recognizable by their pinchers, legs, and clicking noises, arachnids come in a variety of colors, and each species exhibits very different behavior. They are not known to enter civilized areas, but most species are venomous and are thus considered dangerous to humans.


Grim Hounds: At a quick glance, the Grim Hound may appear to be nothing more than a dark, shaggy, overgrown dog, but they hold little else in common with their domesticated cousins. Known for their uncanny tracking abilities, these canines are associated with crossroads, pathways, and phenomenal power. Hounds rarely harm humans without sufficient provocation or attempts at handling, but they do occasionally get into livestock. They are wild animals and attempts at regular domestication for personal use have failed.

Bruisers: Bruisers are large reptilian creatures that seem almost humanoid. Originally from the Abkhati rainforest, they’ve since moved northwards. Pairs are extremely territorial and will fervently defend their hunting grounds, a fact which has led to a long list of violent encounters following the steady expansion of human civilization. Bruisers have been known to hunt a wide range of prey, including other predators, but their favorite food by far is fish; thus their particular fondness for lakes, rivers, and other waterways.

Bush Dragon: The Bush Dragon, which is in no known way related to Dragons, is an aggressive reptilian predator that has no problem attacking small groups of humans. Its favorite hunting tactic involves ambushing prey from the woods. They are cold-blooded creatures and tend to bask in the sun. During cold weather they can also be found huddling in their burrows.

Canids: Canids are wild, dog-like creatures that come in a variety of colors, and have unique abilities based on their place of origin. Unlike their mundane cousin, the wolf, not all canid species hunt in packs to take down their prey. In fact, each species favors a different method, some utilizing magic, others using their physical strength. All species are all considered to be intelligent, but cannot be domesticated.

Capaill Ishka: The Capaill Ishka, or ‘water horses’, are heard more than they are ever seen, but have been found in the earliest oral tales. Their nickname is derived from their equine-like appearance, but closer inspection will reveal sharp, splayed hooves, cat-like eyes, and teeth fit for a large panther. They are rarely seen in heavily populated areas, and while their cries echo near the city of Dantria, they cannot scale rocky cliffs. They’re a creature best not trifled with, the stories you hear about them are true.

Grassland Wild Pig: Solitary by nature, the wild pig is an omnivorous, and very opportunistic scavenger. They are native across much of Kordi and Cavachas lands and are the assumed ancestors of domestic pigs, as told by the Bari. Although attacks on humans are not common as the pigs tend to avoid them, they do happen on occasion. A cornered or surprised wild pig will defend itself vigorously and is best left alone.

Living Statue: The elemental incarnations of metal, living statues are so-called because of their ability to phase between living motion and the still, un-breathing state of statues as they so desire. Very little is known about the purpose or motivation of living statues, although records describe them as singularly focused and efficient, even to the point of brutality, in undertaking actions. Scholars and followers of the Brown God tend to view them as particularly interesting mysteries and the locations in which they are found are usually noted as places of interest—for whatever reason—to the god responsible for their creation.

Nightstalker: As implied by their name, nightstalkers are dangerous and highly aggressive creatures that roam only after nightfall. They have a dark, heavily-armored exoskeleton and a frighteningly well-defined grasp of tactics and ambush. Their exoskeletons appear to contain trace amounts of metal, which can be gathered up as long as the creature’s armor has not been completely destroyed in the effort to defeat it; however, they are very difficult to fight and anyone who is untrained in hunting them is warned to keep well away.

Panthers: The cat-like panthers come in three (known) distinct species. Some are predominately arboreal, and known for being extremely territorial and willing to fight to the death to defend it’s range. Others prefer areas around waterways and may even swim. Panthers are predominately solitary creatures, but some have been known to travel in tactical ‘troops’.

Plant Monster: Plant monsters, the incarnation of wood, are semi-sentient creatures that inhabit forests or their immediate environs. They are benevolent and helpful toward other creatures, with a particular fondness for other flora and fauna. Unprovoked, they pose no threat to the average passerby. However, there are documented incidents in which angry plant monsters have attacked overly successful hunters or those who exploit their forest homes, and the Prytanis held great sway over their actions, turning them violent.

Prytanis: Although now understood to be another race of sentient being, much like humans, the Prytanis were commonly believed to be other-realm creatures long before they made their intelligence known. They are large, bipedal insect-like people with bright orange carapaces and a propensity for wielding astounding amounts of thaumaturgical magic. Few still reside in the Ephemeral Realm after the end of the Half-Century War, when they sought control of the human settlements, but those that do are typically hostile.

Psari: Similar to Prytanis, the Psari were once believed to be creatures. They were created by the collision of the White and Black Gods, before Silver’s involvement forged Humans, and are rumored to inhabit the oceans and rivers of the Ephemeral Realm. They are said to covet Human spouses, who will introduce innate magic into their bloodlines. Few linger long enough on shore to clear up the myriad rumors of their desires, and even those who have spent time with humans have left them with conflicting stories.

Sea Ghost: Colloquially known as “sea ghosts,” these creatures represent the elemental incarnations of water. Often found wandering aimlessly around still bodies of water in small groups, they are frail incorporeal beings who seem to take little notice of what is around them. This is not to say that they are not sometimes dangerous, however; threatened sea ghosts have been known to cause mischief using the thaumaturgical abilities of the water element.

Sentinel: Sentinels are the elemental incarnations of earth; due to their ability to speak in simple, broken sentences, they are considered the most intelligent and—by some—the Brown God’s “favored” incarnations. Whatever the case may be, sentinels are most often found at sites of natural disasters with the apparent intention of maintaining calm and stability within the affected areas. They are rumored to be quite kind and slow to anger, although they are extremely formidable opponents indeed if pushed to violence.

Skinks: Skinks are small, green reptilian creatures who live in large social groups called “broods.” Male skinks, although small and relatively feeble alone, can be quite a handful in large numbers. The brood mother serves as the group’s tactician, sic-ing its brood on whatever prey it can find—or whoever poses a threat.

Wingwalker: In common opinion, wingwalkers are considered to be a huge nuisance and aren’t particularly special in any way—the pigeons of Eras, so to speak. They are large, flightless birds with brown or black bodies and white wings whose shrieks and calls are as unmistakable as they can be grating on the nerves. They aren’t considered to be of any real threat to humans but are a noticeable problem amongst crops of magical flowers.

Ursine: The ursine is a medium-sized, heavy-set mammal that is classified into two separate species: mountain and woodland. Depending on the species they may either be grey, white, or black in coloring. Although similar in appearances and their aggressive, territorial nature and omnivorous diet, their hunting strategies are markedly different. They are best left to their own devices.

Vulpurus: These peculiar fox-like creatures are supposedly diurnal, as they are only ever seen out and about during the day, but creature experts claim that their sleeping patterns deny all classification. While deemed non-threatening to the casual passerby, and is widely believed to be a boon to the land – their presence typically signifies a rich, healthy area – they are best left undisturbed if you aren’t wanting for mischief or trouble.

Creatures of Lore

Dragons: Often referred to as the “most mysterious creatures on Eras.” Their origin is uncertain, although their presence within human cultures dates back to the very beginnings of time, in artwork, sculpture, songs, and tales. Some claim that dragons taught Humans to speak, but this theory is as yet unsubstantiated, and the dragons themselves are encountered so rarely that it seems scholars will never receive an irrefutable answer on the subject. Several have been spotted by many, such as a great silver dragon, which flew over the city of Dantria, but most alleged sightings have been unconfirmed.

Firebird: Stories about the firebird go back to before written record; it is believed that they originated on the islands to the west before the distant volcano blew them east. Instantly recognizable by its glowing feathers and entrancing song, the firebird is much-revered throughout the world. Generally speaking, firebirds are gentle but easily startled, and will often provide healing and other restorative magic to those they deem worthy.

Gruagach: A gruesome and bloodthirsty creature from early folklore, the gruagach is commonly invoked by frustrated parents attempting to scare their children into good behavior. It is said that the gruagach stalks the night looking for disobedient children to snatch and gobble up; the darkest versions of this myth describe the way in which the gruagach dons the skin of its victims after it has finished sucking the marrow from their bones. Described as vaguely humanoid in form, the creature is supposed to have long, sharp claws and a hunched, animalistic posture.


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