In 2002 I created the world of Hyracanum for my most ambitious D&D campaign ever, The Edge Campaign, and liked it enough to use it for four subsequent campaigns: Realm of the Five Duchies, Dragon Isles of the Xanthium Sea, Zenobia and the 3 Queens setting created for the podcast series B&B (Bards & Ballads – Not a Bed and Breakfast Podcast).
- Isle of Cats (in development) – All-new setting for the post-COVID era and players who want to play in person.
- Zenobia (2019 – ongoing) – An Empire presided over by a Gold Dragon.
- Dragon Isles of the Xanthium Sea (2018 – 2020) – The first time I had to run a supergroup of 7+ players since high school days.
- Sagasvale (2020) – the end-point for the Dragon Isles campaign, really a setting so unique as to warrant separate attention.
- 3 Queens (2019) – Originally created for the B&B (Bards & Ballads – Not a Bed and Breakfast Podcast) game setting and used for other adventures.
- Realm of the Five Duchies (2015-17) – Used for two campaigns set in the Duchy of Dunsany. First run of 5th Edition rules.
- The Edge Campaign (2002-05) – For which the world was created, epic adventures that reached as far as the Inverted World and the moons. Run on 3rd Edition rules.
The Gods of Hyracanum
There are many, many more gods in the world than can be listed here, beings who govern various aspects of life and death, but across the world it is acknowledged that the most powerful of them reside in the stars like a zodiac of twelve major constellations that are visible even during the day. This more-or-less universal list covers them by their most common names.
- Bered (NG) – Life, Light
- Celestia (LN) – Knowledge
- Derneth (N) – War
- Hyra (N) – Life, Nature
- Jenro (LE) – War
- Kibelle (CG) – Life, Trickery
- Lancorra (LG) – War
- Mati-Mali (CN) – Tempest, Trickery
- Michimalto (N) – Knowledge
- Pethamor (N) – Light
- Samas (NE) – Knowledge
- Tanetar (CE) – Tempest, Trickery
Good and Evil. Law and Chaos. These are the axes of Alignment, the moral and ethical worldview of creatures that helps define their actions, reactions and purposes.
At the most fundamental level, Good versus Evil is equivalent to life versus death, for both are emanations of the Positive and Negative Material Planes – the generative and destructive forces of the universe. The essential difference is that Good values life and Evil does not.
The conflict of Law versus Chaos is that of institutions versus individuals, control versus freedom, order versus anarchy. Both Law and Chaos can be used for Good or Evil. Likewise, Good and Evil can be tools in the pursuit of Law or Chaos.
Good works toward building hope, love, compassion and well-being for as many as possible. Peace and prosperity are to be achieved by the destruction of Evil.
Evil is driven by a desire to dominate the weak and eliminate the rest. Hate, fear, cruelty and sadism are tools to be used to spread suffering and destroy Good.
Law puts maximum value on order and discipline as the best means of survival and advancement. Institutions offer security against the entropy of Chaos.
Chaos is intolerant of rules and anti-authoritarian. Individual freedom must be protected at all cost in the fight against the oppressive forces of Law.
Neutral sees Good, Evil, Law and Chaos as tools as much as distractions in the pursuit of a balanced approach to existence. Neutral can also be taken as a non-alignment if a creature has no interest or capacity for philosophy, such as in animals.
LAWFUL GOOD creatures can be counted on to do the right thing as expected by society. Strict in the persecution of law and order, these precepts are used for the common good: life, truth and beauty. The benefits of this society are for all.
NEUTRAL GOOD folk do the best they can to help others according to their needs. Law and Chaos have equal value but neither should get in the way of bringing about the most beneficial conditions for living beings.
CHAOTIC GOOD characters act as their conscience directs, with little regard for what others expect. For them, freedom and randomness of action are ultimate truths, but they place equal value on life and individual welfare.
CHAOTIC NEUTRAL creatures follow their whims, holding their personal freedom above all else. Anarchy and disorder are more highly valued than life or death. Good and Evil are complimentary balance arms. Neither is preferred for ultimate Chaos would then suffer.
CHAOTIC EVIL beings act with arbitrary violence, spurred by their greed, hatred or bloodlust. Law and order, kindness and compassion are contemptible. Life has no value. By promoting Chaos and Evil, they hope to achieve power in a world ruled by individual caprice and their own whims.
NEUTRAL EVIL is the alignment of those who do whatever they can get away with, without compassion or qualms. Pure Evil is all-in-all. Both Law and Chaos may be used, but both are disdained as useless clutter in bringing maximum suffering and woe to the world.
LAWFUL EVIL characters methodically take what they want, within the limits of a code of tradition, loyalty or order. By adhering to stringent discipline, they hope to impose their yoke upon the world and crush any and all who would dare oppose them and their ruthless imposition of order.
LAWFUL NEUTRAL beings act in accordance with the law, tradition or personal code. Regulation is all-important because the ultimate harmony of the world rests upon order. Good and Evil are immaterial beside the determined purpose of bringing all to predictability and control.