Sword World 2.5: An Overview, Part Six

Sword World 2.5

(Number six with a bullet in my persnickety series of Sword World 2.5 articles, as I obsess over the English version by the Sword World Translation Project. Download their translationjoin their Discord, or peruse their sub-Reddit. This is your penultimate warning.)

Guilds in Alfleim

The Guilded Age

Adventurer’s Guild: Originally a network of daemon-fighting warriors which formed after the Abyss disaster 3,000 years ago, this has evolved into a general-purpose troubleshooting group which responds to local emergencies. It receives requests for help, pays out rewards, and provides small loans, rescue and body recovery, and resurrection services to its members. Local branches often run taverns or dining halls with attached lodging.

The AG maintains an adventurer’s Reputation, a numeric approximation of an adventurer’s public fame as a hero. Characters can spend Reputation to gain access to exotic weapons and artifacts, but they always retain their cumulative score to get nifty titles as they ascend the Guild ladder.

Yeah, my level is Flamberge, I’m kind of a big deal

Magician’s Guild: Where the cool mages hang out. This guild provides training for sorcerers and conjurers. It’s also your best bet to find some of the more obscure magic items for sale. Most people think they’re mysterious and spooky. They do little to change that impression.

Temples: The go-to for all your priestly needs. Nearly all humanoid towns have temples to Lyphos of the First Sword and the sun god Tidan. Lesser gods’ representation may depend on the region. Barbarous cities have temples to Dhalkrem and his dark ilk. Grendal, god of fire, is worshiped by both sides.

Institute of Magitechnology: After the Diabolic Triumph destroyed the Magitech civilization, the Institute was formed to keep Magitech knowledge alive. They’re also a major financial backer of the Adventurer’s Guild and co-office with them sometimes. Artificers and alchemists often get their training here.

Rider’s Guild: Long-range transportation of goods is at a premium since the Diabolic Triumph, so these guys popped up to assist caravans. Riders can rent all kinds of mounts through this guild, from horses to giant lizards to flying bikes. You can be blacklisted if you get a lot of mounts lost or killed.

Ruins Guild: When you find interesting antiquities in forgotten ruins, the Ruins Guild is where you go to get them appraised by… okay, this is actually the Thieves Guild. Besides the usual shady rackets, they provide security in poor areas and have an extensive information-gathering network. The Ruins Guild sometimes works alongside the Adventurer’s Guild. Quietly, of course.

Monsters

What do you want from us? We’re evil! EVIL!

Each book contains over a hundred monster listings of appropriate levels, divided into categories.

Barbarous: The OG and the most ubiquitous. Most every adventurer on Raxia will first wet their swords with Barbarous blood. Since Barbarous were humanoids many millennia ago, they will either be your usual bipedal monster (kobolds, goblins, ogres, minotaurs, giants, trolls, etc.) or are monstrous with an alternate human form (drakes and basilisks). Barbarous only respect strength, so drakes lord over ogres who lord over goblins who lord over kobolds.

Okay, maybe they’re not all bad

There are no orcs in this setting. Roughly in their place are bolgs, heavily muscled blue-skinned creatures with white fur. Any resemblance to Japanese oni is completely within your imagination.

Animals: Animals. Not a lot of oddities here besides the occasional giant bug or sea monster. Dinosaurs appear here and there. At higher levels you’ll find animals with inborn magic, like the Blazing Mammoth.

ice burn

Plants: Gotta have your carnivorous plants and poisoned vines. A few species specifically target other plants, like Meria Mistletoe, which is a bit like cordyceps but for Meria. Ents, here called “Entlets” and “Living Trees,” show up as well.

Undead: Creatures gain soulscars in various ways. Barbarous are monsters partly because of their heavy soulscarring. Nightmares are born with them. Adventurers who get repeatedly resurrected can also gain soulscars, which will cause increasing physical changes. But after five soulscars, anyone who gets resurrected becomes an undead.

Undead range from skeletons to nosferatu to zombie dragons. Pretty much anything that can die can return as an undead. Here we also find our old pal the Dullahan, staple of Japanese Western fantasy.

He’ll never get ahead in death

Conjurers of level 3 and up can create undead using any Humanoid or Barbarous corpse. This is generally frowned upon in polite society.

Constructs: Back during the Magic Civilization, wizards loved to create magical servants to guard their stuff, or trap intruders, or torture their enemies, or just because screw you, they’re wizards.

Anyway, a lot of these constructs continue to patrol their old haunts. In some cases they’ve taken on a life of their own and have figured out how to multiply themselves, and have to be hunted down.

A Conjurer’s golems count as constructs, though they only last a day instead of, you know, three thousand years. Modern-day wizards are still trying to figure out how the old guys did that.

Magitech: The Magitech Civilization left behind a lot of artifacts. Some of those artifacts will kill you. Magitech monsters are usually robot-like minions that roam the halls of ruined factories and storehouses. They all have techy sci-fi-ish names like “Zerlays” and “Kagners.”

Bonk bonk on the head

Magitech also has the best mounts, which are listed in this section. You haven’t lived until you’ve gone tearing across the plains on a magic motorcycle.

Hyaaaaah

Mythical Beasts: Before humans, these were the Swords of Genesis’ best efforts to create someone to use them. Unfortunately they didn’t have the ambition necessary to take up the power and change the world.

I mean, look at this creampuff

These are your typical monsters from legend, like thunderbirds and gryphons and true dragons and stuff. Most humanoid monsters from Earth myth, like minotaurs and werewolves, are Barbarous instead.

Fairies: Whimsical beings from an alternate dimension of magic. Typical fairies are tiny Tinkerbell-like things, but more powerful fairy types have more diverse forms, like Cait Sith and nymphs. Efreet and titans also count as “fairies” in this cosmology (though SW’s “titans” are giant anime girls; not complaining, mind you, just pointing that out). Fairy Tamers can summon a significant percentage of these guys to do their dirty work for them.

Daemons: Eeeeevil beings from another dimension which were summoned by the Magic Civilization and ultimately caused its downfall. They have an “alternative” sense of morality which makes them see humanoids as things to corrupt, exploit, devour, and forget. They range from tiny imps to big ol’ horned monsters, with lots of variety in between.

WE HAVE BEEN TRYING TO CONTACT YOU ABOUT YOUR CAR’S EXTENDED WARRANTY

The Warlock class, described in the Monstrous Lore supplement, has daemon summoning as its core ability. Considering the history humanoids have with daemons, this is EXTREMELY frowned upon in polite society. Like, “get strung up by a mob” frowned upon.

Humanoids: Bandits and such, yawn.

Next time: Wrapping it up

Part 1: Intro to Sword World/Thumbnail History of Raxia
Part 2: Races and Classes
Part 3: Combat
Part 4: Gods and Spells
Part 5: Fellows
Part 6: Guilds and Monsters
Part 7: Conclusion

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