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WRITTEN BY LOGAN B O N N E R AND C H R I S SIMS EDITED BY J U L I A M A R T I N , K I M M O H A N , AND C H R I S T O P H E R P E R K I N S ILLUSTRATED BY DAVE A L L S O P , KALMAN ANDRASOFSZKY, J O H N A V O N , STEVE B E L L E D I N , M I T C H C O T I E , DAARKEN, E R I C DECHAMPS, STEVE E L L I S , S C O T T F I S C H E R , GONZALO F L O R E S , TOMAS G I O R E L L O , D . ALEXANDER GREGORY, J O H N H O D G S O N , ANDREW J O N E S , D E N N I S K A U T H , R O B LAZZARETTI, R O N L E M E N , HOWARD L Y O N , WARREN M A H Y , L E E M O Y E R , WILLIAM O ' C O N N O R , L U C I O P A R R I L L O , STEVE P R E S C O T T , V I N O D RAMS, WAYNE REYNOLDS, RYAN S O O K , A N N E S T O K E S , M A R K T E D I N , FRANCIS T S A I , FRANZ V O H W I N K E L , A N T H O N Y WATERS, CHARLIE W E N , EVA WIDERMANN, RONALD WIMBERLY, SAM W O O D , AND JAMES ZHANG GRAPHICALLY DESIGNED BY K E V E N SMITH A R T DIRECTED BY K A T E IRWIN EBERRON CAMPAIGN SETTING CREATED BY K E I T H BAKER, B I L L SLAVICSEK, AND JAMES WYATT U.S., CANADA, ASIA, PACIFIC, & LATIN AMERICA Wizards of the Coast, Inc. P.O. Box 707 RentonWA980S7-0707 +1-800-324-6496
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Please keep this address for your records 620-2172372O-001-EN 98765432 1 ISBN: 978-0-7869-4855-0 First Printing: March 2008 DUNGEONS & DRAGONS, D&D, Wizards of the Coast, EBERRON, and their respective logos are trademarks of Wizards of the Coast, Inc., in the U.S.A. and other countries. This material is protected under the copyright laws of the United States of America. Any reproduction or unauthorized use of the material or artwork contained herein is prohibited without the express written permission of Wizards of the Coast, Inc. This product is a work of fiction. Any similarity to actual people, organizations, places, or events is purely coincidental. Printed in the U S A ©2008 Wizards of the Coast, Inc.
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Mickey Redblade was sharpening a dagger when she walked in. She was three feet of trouble—the most beautiful halfling he'd ever seen. Mickey could see it in her eyes. She was in danger. That's the very first bit I wrote for E b e r r o n . Long before the h i s tory of the world took shape, before the dragonmarked houses or the warforged, this story about a dwarf detective in a grimy city filled with magic came into my m i n d . In this world, magic isn't the sole domain of wizards in secluded towers, but rather a part of everyday life. It is a land where people use sorcery for transportation, communication, , entertainment, and war. I've always loved the DUNGEONS & DRAGONS® game. I wanted Eberron to feel like a D&D*world. E b e r r o n needed to be a land with dwarves and elves, swords and spells. It needed to be h o m e to mighty dragons and fearsome monsters. I wanted a place for high adventure. Here explorers could uncover lost civilizations or find ancient cities h i d d e n deep below the earth.
CONTENTS D • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •
Foreword Welcome to Eberron The Shape of Eberron, The Last War Magic Technology Adventurers Humans Elves Half-Elves Gnomes Dwarves Halflings Ores Half-Orcs Warforged Shifters Changelings
• The Mournland
• Other Regions of Khorvaire
• The Emerald Claw
D e m o n Wastes
• Lords of Dust
I also wanted a world full of mystery and scheming. In this place, stories d o n ' t always end well, and there isn't always a right answer to every p r o b l e m . This p r o d u c e d the Last War, a conflict that t u r n e d old allies into bitter enemies and destroyed an entire n a t i o n . T h e aftermath of the Last War showed the cost of war a n d the terrible scars that r e m a i n . Crime and c o r r u p t i o n lurk in the largest cities. Sinister fiends influence the dreams of the unwary. H i d d e n dragons shape the course of history. An army of h o r r o r s lingers just beyond the edge of reality, struggling to break through. Eberron is a world of magic and intrigue. Most of all, it is a world that needs heroes. Whether you explore the shattered cities of Xen'drik, serve as a spy for one of the Five Nations, or seek to unravel the schemes of dragons and demons, you have the power to shape the future of Eberron.
This book guides you through E b e r r o n . It takes you on a tour through the wonders of the world. On Aerenal, an elf enters Shae Mordai to speak with an ancestor who has been dead for over a thousand years. In Sarlona, a kalashtar warrior calls on the power of his m i n d to defeat a creature from nightmares. In the blasted wasteland known as the M o u r n land, soldiers made of steel and stone plot revenge against the humans who created them. In this guide, you see all of these things and far m o r e . Welcome to E b e r r o n ! — Keith Baker, creator of E b e r r o n
world forged by dragons and t o r n apart by war. A world of evil villains, brave heroes, and the people caught in between. A world of adventure—the world of E b e r r o n .
An uneasy peace lies over the land. Intrigue, unrest, the schemes of dark powers, and o p e n warfare i n t e r r u p t this peace. Many groups struggle for power. Many of t h e m plan and execute c u n n i n g plots out of the public eye. Even as the C h u r c h of the Silver Flame works to erase evil from E b e r r o n , the Lords of Dust plot to wipe out civilization. Magic is infused into the land. Everyone sees the gifts of magic. Magical technology is everywhere: everburning streetlights, elemental airships, and the speeding lightning rail.
THE DRAGON BETWEEN According to myth, three mighty dragons made the world. These were the first dragons: Khyber, Siberys, and E b e r r o n . They were the most powerful of all dragons. They lived in harmony until they discovered the mysterious Prophecy. T h e evil Khyber fought the others to seize control of the Prophecy. Noble Siberys was t o r n to pieces and became the Dragon Above, a ring of glowing shards that circles the world. Eberron wrapped herself a r o u n d Khyber and b o u n d him in her coils. Khyber became the Dragon Below, a monster-filled maze of caves that fills the planet. T h e last of the dragons became the surface of the world. She gave birth to all natural things. This is E b e r r o n , the Dragon Between. «"•
The lands of E b e r r o n are diverse. T h e continent of Khorvaire has b o t h refined cities and savage wilderness. On Xen'drik, the ruins of a very old civilization hold great treasure and many secrets. The dragons of Argonnessen study the skies and search for clues about a great Prophecy. Nightmare beings live in the minds of the rulers of Sarlona. The people of E b e r r o n strive for one thing: to survive in an exciting and change-filled world.
n E b e r r o n , the events of the past never die. T h e Last War, a recent event, brought new nations and technology to the c o n t i n e n t of Khorvaire. T h e Last War even created a new race: the warforged. Civilizations and peoples of the distant past affect the world today.
HISTORY Of THE WORLD
Relics dug up from the giant ruins of Xen'drik channel powerful magic. Bizarre cults worship d e m o n s imprisoned long ago u n d e r g r o u n d in Khyber. E b e r r o n ' s past shaped its present and will craft its future.
A G E OF MONSTERS: G oblin kingdoms rose on the
They split the world into the heavens, the earth, and the underworld. Siberys created the dragons, E b e r r o n made all m a n n e r of living things, and Khyber spawned the fiends.
continent of Khorvaire. At the same time, elves settled their island h o m e l a n d of Aerenal. Eventually, the goblins created an e m p i r e . A brutal war with the m a d n e s s - b o r n creatures called daelkyr caused the empire to collapse.
A G E OF DEMONS: Evil creatures from the depths of
T H E CURRENT A G E : The dragonmarks appeared in
Khyber overran the world. They warred with dragons for centuries. T h e i r long reign was ended with the sacrifice of the noble couatl, beautiful serpents with majestic wings.
the bloodlines of various races across Khorvaire. Humans migrated from Sarlona to Khorvaire. Long after the humans' departure, the quori conquered Sarlona. King Galifar 1 united five major nations on the continent of Khorvaire. Later, the K i n g d o m of Galifar splintered, and the nations went to war—the Last War. T h e Last War c o n t i n u e d for over a century, ending with the Treaty of T h r o n e h o l d and the promise of lasting peace.
A G E OF DRAGONS: T h e three great dragons fought.
A G E OF GIANTS: Giants built an advanced society on the continent of Xen'drik. A rebellion of elf slaves and an invasion by the quori—living nightmares from beyond the world—led to the end of the giants' civilization.
Warforged titans are huge war machines with one axe arm and one hammer arm. Warforged titans are not as smart as humanoid warforged. They are only smart enough to follow specific commands on the battlefield.
Thinking constructs called warforged fought for all sides. The nation of Karrnath raised the dead, creating zombies and skeletons to fight for it
In the h u n d r e d t h year of the conflict, a great cataclysm destroyed the nation of Gyre and killed nearly all of its inhabitants. T h e remaining nations fought even harder after Gyre was destroyed. T h e leaders of the remaining nations, however, soon became willing to reconcile. T h e Treaty of T h r o n e h o l d ended the war. T h e peace it brought is tense. Suspicion, mistrust, and resentment run high. Many think that a n o t h e r war is coming. T h e Last War might not be the final war after all.
DRAGONMARKED HOUSES T h e dragonmarked houses—masters of trade—were neutral during the Last War. They sold their services to all sides. For instance, House Jorasco provided battlefield healing and House Vadalis bred animals to serve as m o u n t s .
wizard, attacked in an u n d e r g r o u n d cave, fires a lightning bolt that kills h e r foes. A d r u i d living in the forests of the Eldeen Reaches controls the forces of n a t u r e . In the city of Sharn, a spy wearing a ring of invisibility sneaks into a rival group's headquarters.
E b e r r o n is a world filled with magic. The very land itself is infused with supernatural energy. Magic serves many purposes: It lights the streets at night, and it binds the most powerful d e m o n s deep below the earth. Powerful spellcaster can blast foes with fire, heal the wounded, s u m m o n powerful monsters, or even stop time. Skill in arcane magic is gained t h r o u g h study or i n b o r n talent. Use of divine magic comes from intense devotion and prayer. Those capable of casting powerful spells might be sages, priests, advisors, or adventurers.
EVERYDAY MAGIC In Eberron, magic is neither strange n o r secret. Everyone sees the products of magic daily, though only a few master magic. M^In the countryside, raincallers call storms to water crops. ** Farmers use magic to complete their chores when they can afford to. In the cities, magical services are c o m m o n . Magewrights are tradesfolk but also spellcasters. They work magic into their products, making weapons stronger, fabric more beautiful, and other items better.
One dragonmarked house. House Sivis, operates a communication network. The house members cast spells (or use paired magic items called sending stones) to send messages over a distance. ^^
Artificers are magic-users who don't use magical formulas to get their power. They draw on the magic inside objects, changing the flow of power to make an item temporarily magical.
SPELLS AND ITEMS *s Patrons can pay to have spells cast for them by members of dragonmarked houses. Dragonmarked houses are merchant houses that offer spellcasting or use of dragonmark effects. A spellcaster uses magic normally. A dragonmarked heir has a dragonmark—a hereditary symbol on his body—that creates a magical effect and allows h i m to use mystical tools. T h o u g h various dragonmarked houses provide similar spellcasting services, only specific houses have members with particular dragonmarks. Simple magic items and spells make everyday life easier. Everbright lanterns light city streets, arcane seals validate documents, and magical alarms secure r o o m s . Architecture uses magic, too. T h e most notable example is Sharn, the City of Towers. In Sharn, magic allows buildings to be extremely tall—and enables some of them to float in the air.
DRAGONSHARDS Dragonshards are magic crystals f o u n d above, o n , and within the earth. T h e three types are n a m e d after the dragons of myth. P i n k - a n d - r e d E b e r r o n shards are f o u n d in the g r o u n d . G o l d e n Siberys shards rain down from the sky, falling from the i m m e n s e Ring of Siberys. Prospectors and adventurers dig up smoky p u r p l e rChyber shards from deep u n d e r g r o u n d .
Magic item shops are easy to find in large cities. G a r ments, tools, and weapons can all be magically enhanced, and one can buy or sell such items.
.rtisans use magic to craft amazing machines. Magic has improved transportation and architecture. It has also created the warforged, which are so advanced that they are alive.
LIGHTNING RAIL Much like a train, a lightning rail coach transports people and cargo across the continent. A magical air elementa fused into a lightning rail coach provides propulsion for the coach and cause it to hover 5 feet above the g r o u n d . C o n ductor stones embedded in the g r o u n d interact with the ai elemental to keep the coach traveling on its path. T h e lightning rail gets its name from the electric bolts that j u m p between conductor stones (and to a coach when it passes over t h e m ) .
Large cities have huge lightning rail stations, but even some small towns have modest stations. T h o u g h it's safer than a caravan, lightning rail travel can still be dangerous. Because coaches carry wealthy citizens, bandits often target them. T h e price keeps most people from traveling by lightning rail. However, it is a cheap way for somewhat wealthy people to cross long distances quickly in safety. Customers who desire extra privacy can lease or purchase custom carts with their own cargo areas. Even the lightning rail operators won't bother people in a custom cart.
Flying ships are c o m m o n sights in the skies over Khorvaire. A flying ship uses magic to imprison an elemental (usually an air elemental or fire elemental) in an elemental ring that provides propulsion. Flying ships are one of the fastest ways to travel across Khorvaire. I ravelers who want to take a (lying ship on less-traveled routes must persuade a captain to take them on a risky voyage. Elemental galleons are seagoing ships made with bound water elementals. Some of these ships can even travel underwater. A dragonmarked pilot of House Lyrandar steers an elemental vessel. Without a dragonmark, a would-be pilot must overcome the will of the b o u n d elemental.
All elemental vessels, whether they fly or sail, must be built of soarwood, a rare wood with magical buoyancy. 1 his wood keeps an airship afloat even if the elemental ring fails. Passengers and cargo board airships via docking towers, as the elemental ring prevents the ship from landing on the g r o u n d . Life rings are placed around the deck of an airship as a safety measure in case of airship failure or imminent crash. By breaking a piece of twine that crosses the wooden h o o p of a life ring, a passenger can use the r i n g s magic to let up to four people float safely to the g r o u n d .
ELEMENTAL BINDING Elementals are creatures made of the purest elementals in existence: air, fire, water, and earth. Artificers have mastered the technique of imprisoning elementals into objects. To bind an elemental into an item, a crafter must call the elemental into the world, trap it, and imbue its essence into the item. This technique is used not only in airships and galleons but also in other magic items. A suit of a r m o r with a b o u n d water elemental could allow its wearer to breathe underwater. A weapon that ripples with flames and b u r n s those it hits might have a fire elemental b o u n d within it.
I b e r r o n is a world of dangerous lands and sneaky villains. Only a few brave souls fight against the dangers. These adventurers (though some seek only fortune and glory) are often all that prevents E b e r r o n from falling into chaos, war, or total r u i n . Adventurers lead high-risk lives. They dig into ancient tombs, fight off agents of evil, and collect vast treasures—if they survive. Warriors, rogues, wizards, and clerics, a m o n g others, can all be adventurers. All adventurers can have different personal motivations and goals. Adventurers who defy the odds find great rewards, and even a sort of immortality t h r o u g h story and song.
IT TAKES ALL KINDS Adventurers must cooperate to survive the perils of E b e r r o n . A wily wizard, stuffy cleric, and untrustworthy rogue might form an adventuring party if all of them share a similar goal. Likewise, an urbane half-elf could travel alongside a wild halfling. A battle-scarred warforged and a naive but powerful spellcaster become friends as they fight off horrible monsters.
UNLIKELY HEROES Not all adventurers band together to delve into buried dungeons. An inquisitive (a detective) investigating a political m u r d e r , a chronicler seeking news, or a traveling guild representative could suddenly step into adventure.
A s T H E D O M I N A N T R A C E O F E B E R R O N , h u m a n s live throughout the world. H u m a n s are diverse and adaptable, bold and c u r i ous. They conform to no obvious physical, mental, or spiritual stereotype. O n e h u m a n might be a fanatic of an obscure religion, her b r o t h e r might be a scoundrel, and her father might be a c o m m o n merchant. A particular group of h u m a n s might descend into barbarism and begin worshiping demons. A n o t h e r could peacefully settle in a fertile area and integrate itself with the surroundings and the natives. H u m a n s can become or create just about anything they set their minds to. They're among E b e r r o n ' s greatest heroes and vilest villains. Although few know it, the h u m a n race originated on the continent of Sarlona. Many humans left Sarlona thousands of years ago to explore or to escape the wars that regularly erupted among Sarlona's kingdoms. Most of these explorers and refugees arrived in Khorvaire. No more than a thousand years after their arrival in K h o r vaire, h u m a n s dominated that land. O n e h u m a n king—Galifar I—united the entire continent a thousand years after that.
Anything can happen on an adventure, and a big part of adventure preparation is selecting the best gear. Weapons are a must. An adventurer needs options for fighting close up and at range. Suitable a r m o r a n d shields are essential. Some choose heavy a r m o r for maximum protection. O t h e r s wear lighter leather a r m o r for mobility. Adventurers also need magic items. These can range from simple potions for healing wounds I to clothing that makes you faster or tougher.
D E F I N E D BY THEIR GRACE AND POISE,
can be beautiful and fearsome. Most elves are b o t h . Apart from their slender bodies, fine features, and pointed ears, elves look much like h u m a n s . Elves from different regions o E b e r r o n have little in c o m m o n with each other.
T h e elves of central Khorvaire d o n ' t have strong ties to elven culture. Instead, they identify with the nations in which they live. An elf from Aundair is more likely to identify with another A u n d a i r i a n than another elf.
An elf w h o has the Mark of Shadow is a member of one of t w o dragonmarked houses: House Phiarlan or House Thuranni. These houses are powerful rivals.
Elves who live on the island-continent of Aerenal are isolated, caring little for the world outside. T h e i r most striking trait is how they revere their ancestors. This reverence is not just a custom—the ancestors walk a m o n g them.
GEOGRAPHY Of AERENAL The lush forests of Aerenal are h o m e to many family settlements, but several large cities dot the island-continent. The most p r o m i n e n t is Shae Mordai, the City of the Dead. Though the Aereni d o n ' t like outsiders, their magical forests attract those from other nations who want to exploit Aerenal's natural resources. T h e varieties of magic wood that grow in the forests can be used for airship building or for crafting weapons and a r m o r .
T h e elves of Valenar, a nation on the southeastern coast of Khorvaire, are aggressive warriors. Valenar elves venerate their ancestors by following in the tradition of great warriors. In ancient times, elves enslaved by giants fought for their freedom and won. To emulate these heroes of old, Valenar elves crave the action of battle and glorious victory over a challenging foe. Valenar elves are masters of horse riding and training. They form fearsome cavalry units. T h e flashing scimitars of a charging Valenar warband are a scary sight.
The Valenar double scimitar consists of t w o curving blades attached to a single long handle. The elves of Valenar are adept at using it on foot or on horseback.
GEOGRAPHY Of VALENAR
aathless, known as the Undying Court, shapes the destiny of the elf race from the city of Shae Mordai. The streets are full of deathless soldiers and advisors. An eerie quiet always cloaks the city.
I Between the b a r r e n desert on the n o r t h e r n b o r d e r of Valenar and the lush forest on the southern coast lie vast plains and steppes. These lands are perfect for the Valenar elves, who travel on fast, majestic horses. These elves rarely stay in one place for long. T h e city of Taer Valaestas is h o m e to the king of Valenar. T h e city is built for war. It is fortified with towers and walls built of stone and durable densewood.
THE DEATHLESS Living Aereni elves worship the h o n o r e d dead of Aerenal. Aereni who die are reanimated. They are restored by positive energy to become walking dead. T h o u g h u n d e a d animated by evil magic are plentiful in E b e r r o n , the Aereni deathless are different. They are n o t evil, n o r are they mindless. T h e deathless fight alongside their descendants to protect Aerenal and the elf race. Aereni elves have many ways of showing their devotion to the dead. An elf might wear an elaborate death mask, tattoo his face in the image of a skull, or use magic to make his flesh look decomposed.
H A L F - E L V E S ARE UNIQUE TO K H O R V A I R E . Khorvaire's h u m a n settlers and elves who migrated from Aerenal blended to create the half-elf bloodline. Although humans and elves still form relationships, and even produce half-elf offspring, half-elves have become a distinct race. Half-elves are naturally friendly with one another, and they form close b o n d s quickly. They call themselves the Khoravar—the C h i l d r e n of Khorvaire—since their race was b o r n on that continent. Half-elves have no overarching culture. They integrate easily into h u m a n society. They can be found living all across Khorvaire a m o n g h u m a n s . O t h e r half-elves are raised by an elf parent or become curious about their elven heritage. These half-elves explore that legacy by practicing elven rites or traveling to elven lands. Half-elves are rarely welcome a m o n g their m o r e raditional elf kin. Few half-elves form lasting ties with communities in Aerenal or Valenar. Half-elves tend to naturally group themselves based on shared traits. T h e two most p r o m i n e n t groups are d r a g o n marked houses: House Lyrandar, whose members carry the Mark of Storm, and House Medani, whose members bear the Mark of Detection. House Lyrandar's half-elves tend to be free spirits who love nature, weather, and travel. Those of House Medani are more sober, but nonetheless bold and curious. T r u e to their h u m a n half, half-elves are adaptive and daring. They are an unpredictable people, and many half-elves take to the road as explorers. Others become inquisitives in large cities, such as Sharn, or take exciting and risky j o b s as airship pilots or bodyguards. Half-elves have u n i q u e styles and outgoing attitudes. Life as a half-elf—or with a half-elf—is rarely boring.
A captain from House Lyrandar pilots his airship using a magic wheel of w i n d and water and the power of his dragonmark.
A half-elf master inquisitive is at home investigating crime or exploring ancient ruins.
G N O M E S ARE VERY SHORT AND SMALL. T h e i r (lack of) height is n o t their defining trait, though. Gnomes think every bit of information is worthwhile. They use knowledge as a tool and a weapon. Although many people think that gnomes are all librarians, bards, or accountants, some are skilled spies or adventurers. A gnome's outgoing d e m e a n o r serves h i m or h e r well in jobs that require social grace. Many become diplomats, translators, and advocates, as well as poets and bards. In fact, gnomes are careful to make sure everyone else thinks they are harmless. Few outsiders realize the importance and power of i n f o r mation in gnome society. Relationships are built on favors and secrets. Gnomes rely on blackmail, espionage, and assassination rather than physical might. T h e i r natural mastery of illusion magic carries over to the art of deception. They are skilled at tricking others to get what they want. Religion is a personal choice for gnomes. G n o m e ands have churches of all religions, and a gnome might experiment with several religions before settling on o n e .
_/\RGO The nation of Zilargo is the gnomes' h o m e . It is famous for its vast stores of knowledge and prestigious schools. Its architecture is beautiful. Its streets are full of color and cheer. Zilargo accepts outsiders. T h e people are friendly and helpful. In fact, gnomes make time to talk to strangers because they think that even what seems to be trivial information will someday have value. Zil gnomes make money from exporting many goods and services. T h e jewel mines of Zalanberg provide mineral wealth for the economy.
T h e gnomes of Zilargo have mastered magical artisan ship. They specialize in elemental b i n d i n g and alchemy. They build the airships and elemental galleons used by House Lyrandar. Seafarers from across the c o n t i n e n t commission ships from Zil shipwrights. KorranbergChronicle, comes from Zilargo. People across the c o n t i n e n t read the Korranberg Chronicle, cementing the gnomes' status as information experts.
DWARVES ARE STOUTER THAN HUMANS. They average a r o u n d 4-1/2 feet tall, but they are as heavy as some h u m a n adults. A male dwarf values his beard, g r o o m ing and styling it carefully. A female dwarf prizes the hair that grows on her head as much as a male dwarf prides h i m self on his beard. All dwarves value gold and other precious metals, gems, and mineral wealth. T h e first dwarves came from Frostfell, a frozen continent at the top of the world. Over time, dwarves moved south to the n o r t h e r n sections of Khorvaire and Sarlona. Although small tribes of dwarves still live in Frostfell, most dwarves now reside somewhere else. In Khorvaire, dwarves inhabit a m o u n t a i n o u s nation they call the M r o r Holds. T h e M r o r Holds were once part of the kingdom of Galifar, but the area seized its independence d u r i n g the Last War.
Twelve major Khorvairian dwarf clans compete for supremacy in the I r o n r o o t and Hoarfrost Mountains. They feud using money and influence rather than the axes and shields of their forebears. Clan Kundarak, now the dragonmarked House Kundarak, claims neutrality in this complex game, but it holds the greatest a m o u n t of power. In Sarlona, in the highlands of the Tashana T u n d r a , the dwarves are isolated. D o r a n n dwarves live in the n o r t h e r n tundra, warring among their own clans as the Mror dwarves of Khorvaire did long ago. Akiak dwarves lived in the Paqaa Mountains in the southern t u n d r a until Riedra, a h u m a n nation controlled by the wicked Inspired, destroyed their holds. T h e Akiak now wander as nomads, fighting a rebel campaign against the Riedrans.
Warpriest's battle standard
ANVIL AND AXE T h e i r love of the earth and metal leads dwarves to become master artisans. Dwarven-made weapons and a r m o r are a m o n g the finest in E b e r r o n . Dwarves are fierce soldiers with a p r o u d martial t r a d i tion. Dwarf priests are highly influential and often lead in battle in times of war. They combine magic and marti
HALFLINGS, SHORT FOLK native to Khorvaire, have three distinct lifestyles: nomadic h u n t i n g on the T a l enta Plains, u r b a n living in the cities of Khorvaire, and the hybrid culture of the dragonmarked house halflings. Talenta halflings are imposing despite their size. T h e i r nomadic culture based a r o u n d the h u n t makes them tough and deadly. They cross the vast plains on dinosaur m o u n t s , following the herds they rely on for food. T r a d i t i o n is vital to Talenta halflings. Civilization intrudes into tradition with its politics and its technological comforts. To outsiders, Talenta halflings appear fierce and barbaric. Talenta halflings make no excuses for the brutality of their lifestyles, but they accept others' ways of life.
U r b a n halflings are cultured and adaptable. Most are friendly by nature and tend to form close friendships. They believe in being prepared for any challenge. T h e halfling dragonmarked houses are House Jorasco (healers) and House Ghallanda (hospitality providers). Members of these houses move freely between many societies. They get along both in cities and on the plains.
The vast grasslands of the Talenta Plains are home to herds of dinosaurs, tribex, cattle, and the many halfling tribes. The halflings live in tent cities. Any tribe can use the only permanent city they maintain, Gatherhold. During the Last War, Karrnath and Cyre each claimed parts of the Talenta Plains, and the flat, open terrain made it a perfect battleground. The halflings, by stayed away from these conflicts.
I rained dinosaurs (particularly fast ones such as the clawfoot and the fastieth) serve halflings as mounts. Dinosaur riders feel a close bond to their mounts. They demonstrate respect for the creatures by wearing handcrafted masks. These sacred masks are w o r n only.
Talenta halflings use boomerangs w h e n they hunt, as well as a scythelike weapon called the Talenta sharrash. Adventuring halflings use these items in combat. The Korunda's Gate, a dwarf fortress-city in e Ironroot Mountains of Khorvaire
sharrash is especially useful for tripping foes.
I N WESTERN K H O R V A I R E ,
the land declines in
elevation rapidly, creating a lowland region known as the Shadow Marches. For m o r e than thirty thousand years, its swamps and moors have been h o m e to ores, burly and strong h u m a n o i d s with gray skin and short tusks. Ores saw little of the history of Khorvaire. They were unaware even of the rise of the K i n g d o m of Galifar. Nine thousand years ago, Xoriat, the Realm of Madness, came close to the world. T h e rulers of Xoriat staged a huge invasion of E b e r r o n . War divided the ore tribes. Some served the forces of madness, while others worked to force Xoriat away from E b e r r o n . Divisions created by the war against Xoriat still exist. Some ores worship the forces of madness, practicing dark rites and savagely warring on their neighbors. Others are
ORCS BEYOND THE MARCHES Ores of western Khorvaire, especially in the Shadow Marches, are the most peaceful and civilized of their kind. Barbaric ores, varying in t e m p e r a m e n t , inhabit other places on the c o n t i n e n t . The ores of the hazardous D e m o n Wastes make war on the evil in that land, although some succumb to it. A m o n g the ores , in the monster nation of Droaam, the strong rule the weak and take what they want—similar to how all o t h e r creatures of Droaam behave. In the southern reaches of the M r o r Holds, the orash'ter ores, little m o r e than rapacious monsters, prey on e dwarves, receiving war and hatred in r e t u r n .
part of a druidic tradition, or some other deeply spiritual and more benign tradition. Tribal ores remain p u r e blooded. They deny h u m a n s entry to their society and lands because they believe that only ores have a true connection to the land. Clannish ores have mixed with h u m a n society, leading to the creation of half-ores. Whatever their beliefs or ways, ores maintain a strong tie to the Shadow Marches. They thrive in places where others could barely survive.
Zarash'ak, the City of Stilts, is the heart of trade in the Shadow Marches.
H A L F - O R C S HAVE HUMAN AND ORC BLOOD. Among the clans of the Shadow Marches, these crossbreeds are referred to as the Jhorgun'taal, the "children of two bloods." T r a d i t i o n holds that the very existence of the children of two bloods proves that ores and h u m a n s are kin, and b o t h races are made stronger by their mixing. Halfores are stronger and tougher than h u m a n s , and they are smarter than ores. These traits make up for their lack of winning personalities and good looks. Many early h u m a n immigrants to Khorvaire mingled with the ores of the Shadow Marches. Although some ores fought and killed the newcomers, most of the druidic tribes integrated the humans, adopted some of their customs, and even interbred. Today, the Shadow Marches are full of clans that contain a mix of ores, half-ores, and h u m a n s . In wider Khorvaire, half-ores are sometimes treated as second-class citizens, which might come as a shock to a half-ore from the Shadow Marches. A m o n g the people of the Marches, half-ores are trusted to look out for their p u r e b l o o d e d kin.
T H E LIVING MECHANICAL CONSTRUCTS known as warforged arguably represent the greatest achievement of the Last War—the first sentient race created through magical crafting. They were invented before the Last War, but a breakthrough d u r i n g the war gave them true intelligence. They were created to be perfect soldiers, with size, strength, and a single-minded focus on battle. Unlike mindless constructs, warforged can think tactically and fight intelligently. Although this mindset served them well in battle, they find it hard to adapt to a world without war. Some attempt to j o i n society, others wander, and many seek battle as mercenaries, thugs, or adventurers.
Warforged were initially property, and were sold to people who could afford them. T h e treaty that ended the Last War also freed the warforged. In some lands, however, a system of i n d e n t u r e d servitude still keeps warforged u n d e r strict control. Some people resent the warforged, seeing them as a symbol of the h o r r o r s of the Last War. Those who come to know warforged personally discover that they have much to offer the nations of Khorvaire in times of peace.
PERSONALITY Since they were built for battle, the warforged were encouraged to develop their e m o t i o n s . They have th capacity for all h u m a n emotions, b u t many are still learning to express these feelings. Others often see them as rude or cold. For most warforged, freedom meant losing their sense of purpose. They were built to fight using teamwork and develop camaraderie with their fellow soldiers. Warforged now find it difficult to fit in and find friends. T h o u g h warforged d o n ' t have gender-specific shapes each seems to have a masculine or feminine p<
OTHER PEOPLE T h e warforged mindset was conditioned for combat, so warforged use familiar categories to assess others. C o m m a n d e r s are people whom a warforged is willing to take orders from. Comrades are people the warforged fights alongside on a regular basis. Allies are those who share a goal with the warforged, though warforged are well aware that alliances can be short-lived. Civilians are neither enemies n o r allies, and warforged were trained to ignore civilians. Foes are those whose goals contradict those of the warforged, b u t warforged rarely feel hatred toward foes.
Magic items called warforged components function only when attached to warforged. They might be weapons or protective items. The most curious are those recovered from Xen'drik, whic were crafted long before House Cannith made the first warforged.
ART Since they are tireless, warforged have m o r e "free time" than other races. Many busy themselves with hobbies, including art. They have plenty of time to practice and h o n e their skills to make detailed work. Warforged art is either representational or entirely abstract.
Warforged are created from stone, metal, wood, and organic materials. Their flexible plates are connected with fibrous bundles that give warforged surprising flexibility. They can modify their bodies using magic and training. They might replace their armor plates with stronger ones or add built-in weaponry to their bodies. Since they don't need to eat, sleep, or even breathe, warforged can be active all day and night.
Warforged d o n ' t really understand other races' need to n a m e everything. Most accept whatever names others choose for t h e m . These names are usually simple, such as Azm, Book, Sever, Saber, Pierce, Chase, H a m m e r , or Cart.
Warforged emerged from the creation forges of House Cannith. After the Last War ended, it became illegal to create new warforged. However, some secret creation forges still operate.
Other varieties of warforged can be shaped differently, such as the gorilla-shaped warforged charger or the smaller warforged scout.
SHIFTERS ARE THE DESCENDANTS OF H U M A N S A N D L Y C A N T H R O P E S . They have evolved into a t r u e - b r e e d i n g race that shows signs of its shapeshifting heritage. All shifters are lithe, and most are tough. T h r o u g h shifting, they become able to move faster, become m o r e durable, or even grow claws and fangs. T h e different varieties of shifter have many names: longtooth, cliffwalk, longstride, wildhunt, dreamsight, beasthide, and razorclaw, to name a few.
Lycanthropes can change shape between a humanoid form, an animal form, and a hybrid form. Werewolves, wererats, and werebears are all lycanthropes. Lycanthropy can be spread like a disease, or a creature can be born a lycanthrope. The Church of the Silver Flame long ago carried out a purge of lycanthropes, and the creatures are now rare across Khorvaire. Although the Church of the Silver Flame acknowledges the similarity between shifters and lycanthropes, it has never openly condoned attacks against shifters or their settlements. Nevertheless, shifters remain cautious when visiting the nation of Thrane, where the Silver Flame holds sway.
Shifter personalities reflect their animal natures. A cliffwalk shifter will likely be quiet a beasthide crude, and a longtooth almost feral. All shifters have strong instincts, and their emotions can fluctuate to extremes. This aspect of their personality makes many shifters unpredictable, but causes others to carefully keep their emotions in check. Adaptability and self-reliance are highly valued among shifters. They refer to these traits as "preparing for the j o u r ney yet to c o m e , " and an ideal shifter would be ready for any challenge at any time. Along with self-reliance comes freedom, and there is n o t h i n g shifters value m o r e .
Shifters don't have a nation of their own. / Most shifters either live in the wildernesses of Khorvaire (such as the forests of the Eldeen I Reaches) or dwell in rural human settlements.
Shifters prefer simple, portable gear they can carry with them at all times. Likewise, shifter spellcasters pass up ostentatious magic for m o r e personal, natural magic. Consequently, shifter spellcasters tend to be druids calling on the power of nature instead of wizards who use bulky spellbooks.
CHANGELINGS ARE MASTERS OF DISGUISE, capable of changing their appearance at will. They evolved from the offspring of humans and shapechanging doppelgangers. Changelings have gray skin, fair hair, and long limbs. Their faces (in natural form) look indistinct, with just a hint of a nose and lips. Their yes are blank and white. When a changeling shapeshifts, he can change ""skin tone, facial features, and even height and weight. This ability doesn't allow a changeling to change into a monster, but it can disguise him as any human-shaped being of roughly the same size as his own. Changelings make excellent spies and criminals, and those vho live in u r b a n areas can easily find such work. Beyond their shapechanging ability, they are also adept at learning languages and mannerisms. This trait makes them effective diplomats and entertainers. More than members of most other races, changelings have trouble fitting in and finding a place in the world. T h e i r changing forms make it seem to others that n o t h i n g is certain about them. T h e i r greatest challenge is the prejudice they face from other races, who assume changelings are all assasins, spies, or untrustworthy at best. Changelings follow three distinct philosophies. Passers stay in one disguised form constantly to avoid the mistrust others feel toward changelings, and to live comfortably in society. Becomers change often; they believe that by convincingly portraying many different individuals, they follow their heritage. Reality seekers believe it's possible to perfect their true forms and create a flawless changeling society.
Changelings often try new looks
shapechangers that can assume any humanoid form. The doppelganger and changeling races share gray skin and indistinct features, but changelings have a more limited shapechanging ability than doppelgangers.
A KALASHTAR A R E A M Y S T E R I O U S R A C E . They were b o r n o n the continent of Sarlona as a fusion of quori (incorporeal entities from a realm of dreams) and ascetic h u m a n monks who were willing to j o i n with and protect the q u o r i . T h e u n i o n of dream spirit and h u m a n created a distinct and beautiful species known for its powers of the m i n d . T h e j o i n i n g of h u m a n and quori in this way was a o n e - t i m e event, and presently new kalashtar are b o r n , not created. T h e blending of quori spirit and h u m a n host led the kalashtar to their mastery of amazing mental powers. Such powers, called psion ics, are n o t u n i q u e to the kalashtar, but the kalashtar take to t h e m naturally. Psionic discipline is more rare than magical ability is. As the kalashtar spread to different regions of the world, mastery of psionics becomes m o r e c o m m o n in E b e r r o n , even in unlikely places. Enemies of these quori became the Inspired, who now rule the Sarlonan empire of Riedra. On E b e r r o n today, the Inspired h u n t the kalashtar relentlessly. Kalashtar abide in their besieged and m o u n t a i n o u s h o m e l a n d of Adar, u n d e r constant threat of invasion by the forces of the Inspired. Some kalashtar have left Adar to learn m o r e of the world so they can better resist and protect other peoples from the Inspired.
LOVE AND MADNESS Erie kalashtar seek perfection in m i n d , body, and spirit. Strong empath) and powerful insight make them compassionate and receptive, but their thought patterns are not h u m a n . They believe that o t h e r races are incapable of u n d e r s t a n d i n g the war against the Inspired, but they also see it as their duty to protect others from any force of c o r r u p t i o n . Kalashtar genuinely care for the welfare of living creatures, and they use their pes to guard and defend those in need. T h e alien n a t u r e of the kalashtar is a double-edged sword. Cut c the Region of Dreams, which is h o m e to part of their minds, kalashtar teeter on the edge of insanity. They d o n ' t rely on logic, and their p e r c e p tions of the world can be affected by their otherworldly point of view. Scholars speculate that kalashtar devote themselves to discipline and create complex forms of art and expression in o r d e r to remain g r o u n d e d in tl world—to keen themselves sane.
PATH Of LIGHT Kalashtar believe, as their quori ancestors did, that the Q u o r Tarai (or "Dream of the Age") defines reality. T h e current Q u o r Tarai is a nightmare, but the kalashtar trust that the darkness will eventually give way to light. Inspired and the d o m i n a n t quori of Dal Q u o r wish to delay the coming of the light, keeping Dal Q u o r locked forever in nightmare.
ON T H E STREETS OF SHARN, a crystal-laced warforged blasts a pair of robbers with a wave of pure psychic force, battering them into submission. An Inspired overlord dominates hapless Riedran citizens, t u r n i n g them into slaves. Two apparently u n a r m e d kalashtar telepathically communicate their plan of assault, then spring into action using blades created instantly from their m i n d s . Psionic ability (also called psionics) represents the power of m i n d over matter, matter created by mind, and even o n e m i n d over a n o t h e r . A p e r s o n who can manifest psionic powers can potentially accomplish anything he can imagine. Some creatures can use psionics as well, whether through innate ability or development of a monstrous m i n d . In many ways, psionic abilities are like magic. Both create paranormal effects beyond the power of muscle or machine. Manifesting a power is like casting a spell, and magic and psionics interact readily with each other. Magic and psionics differ in a subtle way. Magic is an energy that pervades the world of E b e r r o n , and many creatures tap this force A^f^^^ I for mystical and m u n d a n e ends. Psionics is, instead, the raw power of the m i n d freed from the need for outside energy or religious devotion.
A psiforged-a new breed of • psionic warforged
POSSESSED OF CUNNING, surprising agility, and endurance, goblinoids are capable creatures. T h e i r races include goblins, bugbears, and hobgoblins. These different breeds share feral features, including sharp teeth, large pointed ears, dark and coarse hair, and yellow-green to orange skin that sometimes darkens on the nose. Hobgoblins are humanlike in stature, though a head taller than an average h u m a n . Bugbears are taller still, and more heavily built than even ores. Goblins, on the other hand, are short—about the same size as gnomes—with bowed legs that belie their speed and grace. Goblinoids once ruled Khorvaire before the coming of h u m a n s . With few aside from scattered tribes of ores to oppose t h e m , they built great nations on Khorvaire. T h e greatest a m o n g these was the unified Empire of Dhakaan.
ANCIENT GLORY Across Khorvaire. the bones of the Empire of Dhakaan stand as a r e m i n d e r of what goblinoids are capable of. O n e of the greatest m o n u m e n t s still standing in Khorvaire is the Six Kings in the Graywall Mountains of Breland. T h e r e , carved from the rock, six hobgoblin warlords stand over a thousand feet high, overlooking a narrow valley. M o d e r n goblinoid warlords trek to the valley to pay homage to their ancestors. Those who have d o n e so have had great successes. Caves u n d e r the kings are said to be full of ancient Dhakaani artifacts, guarded by ghosts of Dhakaani champions.
Goblinoids have always worshiped the dark forces of the world, such as the deities of the Dark Six or the Dragon Below. Missionaries brought the goblinoids the worship of the Sovereign Host. Haruuc reinforced this new religion by personally following the Host's god of war, Dol Dorn.
Hobgoblins ruled the Empire of Dhakaan, and in that d o m i n i o n , it's said, they b r e d goblins as workers and bugbears as warriors. T h e Dhakaani nation lasted eleven thousand years, until the coming of the cruel daelkyr from the Realm of Madness spelled the end of their age. Although the daelkyr were eventually banished, the Empire of Dhakaan was left in shambles. By the time h u m a n s arrived on Khorvaire, all that remained were isolated goblinoid clans surviving on the few useful remains of their fallen realm. With no one to unite them, the goblinoids stood no chance against h u m a n expansion. They fell to h u m a n swords, went into hiding, or integrated with humans—often as slaves.
DARGUUN Just before the Last War, House Deneith established a relationship with goblinoids, whose warlike ways made them excellent mercenaries. It quickly became popular for the wealthy to employ hobgoblin bodyguards. Soon afterward, the Last War began, and it was only a small step for House Deneith to provide goblinoid troops where it had before provided exotic security forces. Goblinoid mercenaries eventually supplemented several nations' armies, which relied heavily on such soldiers as the war dragged on. Lhat dependence proved catastrophic. Seventy-five years into the war, a shrewd hobgoblin warlord named Haruuc secretly united goblinoid warlords and chieftains to his cause, and then t u r n e d on his employers. Haruuc's forces carved a massive chunk of land from the
borderlands, killing many of the people they had been contracted to protect. Dubbing the territory Darguun, H a r u u c became the Lhesh H a r u u c Shaarat'kor—High Warlord H a r u u c of the Scarlet Blade. As H a r u u c calculated, n o n e of the kingdoms from which he carved Darguun could commit military forces to reclaim the land. Breland's king quickly made terms with Lhesh Haruuc, recognizing the land of Darguun in exchange for an alliance. When the treaty to end the war was crafted, most nations recognized Darguun as a state u n t o itself. For his part, Lhesh Haruuc vowed to be at peace with the nations that recognized Darguun—a promise he has thus far kept.
Goblinoids are warlike. They often fight with themselves as well as with others.
The warlord Haruuc and his followers created Darguun during the Last War. He became the ruler of a new goblinoid nation.
M A G I C A L S Y M B O L S known as dragonmarks
look vaguely like tattoos, but they appear in colors so vibrant that they seem to glow. Each k i n d of d r a g o n m a r k grants a particular magical power, anything from speaking with animals to t e l e p o r t a t i o n . Each d r a g o n m a r k is tied to a single b l o o d l i n e . T h e extended families linked to each b l o o d l i n e formed the d r a g o n m a r k e d houses, each of which controls o n e or m o r e trades on K h o r v a i r e . N o t all m e m b e r s of d r a g o n m a r k e d families manifest d r a g o n m a r k s .
The Mark of Making helps repair and create goods. The hurnans of House Cannith create war machines and wondrous magical constructs, including the warforged.
The Mark of W a r d i n g creates magical The Mark of Sentinel has protective
barriers and a l a r m s - a n d even phantom
powers. The humans of House Deneith
watchdogs. The dwarves of House
offer highly trained bodyguards and
Kundarak are bankers and moneylend-
ers, using the power of dragonmarks to make their vaults secure.
The Mark of Storm can control weather. The Mark of Hospitality can create com-
The half-elves of House Lyrandar help
fort and luxury. The halflings of House
agriculture and control transport across
Ghallanda operate cozy inns.
the seas and skies w i t h their elemental galleons and airships.
The Mark of Healing cures wounds and diseases. The halflings of House Jorasco provide health c a r e - f o r anyone w h o can afford their fees.
The Mark of Detection discerns danger. The half-elves of House Medani serve as scouts, detectives, and counterspies.
An underground House Kundarak vault is secured w i t h powerful magic that detects intruders.
Marks come in many sizes. The most powerful marks-Siberys marks-can cover the bearer's entire torso. They are very rare and incredibly powerful.
GUILDS Each dragonmarked house has one or more guilds. Most guild members are not b o u n d to the house by blood, but get more business because the house's b a n n e r is seen as a sign of quality and reliability.
The Mark of Passage has movement
The Mark of Scribing aids w r i t i n g and
powers, including teleportation. The
communication. The gnomes of House
humans of House Orien control transport
Sivis run a vast communication network
of packages and passengers, and they
and serve as translators, notaries, and
operate the lightning rail.
The Mark of Shadow can both deceive and see through deception. The elves of House Phiarlan have used the mark for espionage in secret, but in public they act as artisans and entertainers.
The Mark of Finding discovers hidden objects and creatures. The humans and half-ores of House Tharashk are prospectors, inquisitives, and bounty hunters.
After a faction w i t h i n House Phiarlan split off, House Thuranni was created. This house competes directly w i t h Phiarlan, both in public w i t h entertainment and artisan w o r k and in secret w i t h its Shadow Network.
The Mark of Handling calms and controls animals. The humans of House Vadalis breed and train magnificent beasts.
The elf dragonmarked houses, House Phiarlan and House Thuranni, appear to be entertainers and artisans. However, espionage is far more lucrative. The houses were once one, but w h e n Thuranni split off, the houses became competitors. Members of both houses have the Mark of Shadow, a dragonmark that carries powers of
W I T H I N THE BORDERS OF K H O R V A I R E , the nations that started the Last War exist as sovereign states, and the injuries of the war aren't forgotten. As the war g r o u n d on and the strength of the Five Nations waned, separatist regions arose that formed new nations. Dragonmarked houses and their guilds, even with their supposed neutrality, further confuse the tangled web of relations between c o u n tries. Tossed into the mix were the might of realms on other continents, secret deals, and the aims of factions—secret and public—across Khorvaire and the world. Five major nations made up the K i n g d o m of Galifar, which stretched from coast to coast on Khorvaire. These nations coexisted in peace until the Last War began. At that point, the Five Nations divided, each of its rulers laying claim to the t h r o n e of Galifar. T h r e e rulers of the four nations that survived the Last War are Galifar's descendants. Aundair's Q u e e n Aurala still seeks the t h r o n e of Galifar, though she would rather acquire it through skill with words than skill at arms. T h e war-weary K i n g Boranel of Breland desires peace m o r e than he seeks a united Galifar, and he supports Breland's strong parliament. K a r r n a t h ' s king is Kaius III, who rules his nation as a military dictator. K a r r n a t h , however, was one of the most vocal supporters of peace, and Kaius seems m o r e focused on rebuilding his nation than on rekindling war. A royal n a m e d Thalin ruled T h r a n e at the beginning of the Last War, but after Thalin's death the people of T h r a n e rejected his heir. Faith in the religion of the Silver Flame caused t h e m to instead t u r n to that church for rulership. Now, T h r a n e is a theocracy, and although the nation's leader, Jaela Daran, the Speaker of the Flame, doesn't want war, the majority of her followers want all nations to bow to the sovereignty of their religion.
DRAGONMARKED INFLUENCE Dragonmarked houses are supposedly neutral in the affairs of nations. As mercantile enterprises, the houses need to remain welcome wherever they go. Of course, this appearance of neutrality is sometimes secondary to the private agendas of those who rule a particular house. T h e needs of business also dictate that representatives of the houses seek influence in royal courts all over Khorvaire. Law is often shaped by such needs, and by the power of money.
Identification papers are common in the civilized regions of Khorvaire. They allow for ease of travel, and they aid in law enforcement. Magic even allows for sophisticated picture IDs.
EVERY ORGANIZATION IN E B E R R O N has its secrets, and every other organization wants those secrets. T h e tenuous peace after the Last War could be broken at any time, and espionage is one way to get the upper h a n d if war breaks out again. Some m i n o r espionage missions are given to adventurers. T h o s e who prove their worth take on m o r e vital missions, such as infiltration or counterespionage against spies from rival organizations. Adventurers and others not affiliated with the spying organization are used because they are expendable and can't be traced directly back to their employer. For the most sensitive jobs, though, spymasters must be certain the person they send is totally loyal.
Changelings and gnomes make good thieves and spies. With their powers of disguise, changelings can become anyone. Gnomes are small and cunning, with a voracious appetite for knowledge and a natural talent for illusions. Spies of these races don't have house ties as the elves of the Mark of Shadow do, and they're usually less picky about whom they work for.
The magic image projector created for House Phiarlan can record and play back events. It can record up to 10 minutes of an event and show it as an illusion later. The device can't replicate sounds, however. It is crafted with a Siberys dragonshard suspended in a silver hoop.
T H E FAITHS O F E B E R R O N range from p o p u l a r p a n t h e o n s t o strange m i n o r cults. Deities d o n ' t walk the earth in E b e r r o n , n o r do they produce ostentatious displays of power. No one can provide evidence that the gods exist, but the faithful are certain in their belief.
CORRUPTION Many religions on Eberron could be considered evil, but all churches have some n u m b e r of unscrupulous members. A priest could be an agent of a sinister group, a shapeshilter in disguise, or simply motivated by self-interest or greed. In Eberron, nothing is certain—not even in the arena of faith.
THE SOVEREIGN HOST The most c o m m o n religion on K h o r vaire is the Sovereign Host. Vassals can worship either a single deity or the entire p a n t h e o n , and they make offerings to different deities depending on the situation. Arawai: Goddess of agriculture Aureon: God of law and knowledge Balinor: God of beasts and the hunt Boldrei: Goddess of community and hearth Dol Arrah: Goddess of h o n o r and sacrifice Dol D o r n : G o d of strength at arms
DARK SIX r h e evil deities cast out of the Sovereign Host are called the Dark Six. They cart be considered part of the Sovereign Host or a separate p a n t h e o n . Devious schemers, they are worshiped by villains and m o n sters alike. The Devourer: God of maelstroms and deep waters The Fury: Goddess of rage and ruin The Keeper: God of death and decay The Mockery: God of betrayal and bloodshed The Shadow: God of magic and mayhem The T r a v e l e r : God of chaos and change
K o l Korran: Kol K o r r a n : God of trade and travel O l l a d r a : Goddess of feast and Olladra: good fortune O n a t a r : God of artifice Onatar: artifice and the forge
BLOOD Of VOL Seekers of the Blood of Vol are obsessed with blood, death, and the undead. To Seekers, there is no higher power—just
THE SILVER FLAME T h e disembodied force called the Silver Flame is abstract, but the spirit of the human Tira Miron speaks for it. T h e Purified of the Silver Flame, as followers call themselves, believe that evil is an active, supernatural force and are devoted to purging it from the world.
THE PATH Of LIGHT T h e kalashtar follow a universal force of purity instead of a deity. They call this force il-Yannah ("the Great Light"). They meditate to perfect themselves in body and mind and prepare to fight the forces of darkness.
UNDYING COURT fp
This bizarre form of ancestor worship practiced by the elves of Aerenal reveres the deathless—dead elves animated by positive energy. Since the elves believe the dead to be incarnate deities, they seek advice and favor from them.
the divinity of the blood within their veins. T h e i r greatest champions are often reanimated alter death to continue to fight for lor the cult. Vol is an ancient lich (an intelligent undead spellcaster) and a master master of of necromancy. necromancy. T TH HE E MARK MARK O OF F DEATH DEATH T h e House ol Vol dragT h e House of Vol was was once once aa dragon marked house carrying the onmarked house carrying the Mark Mark of of Death. Death. T T hh ee matriarch matriarch of of the the house house crossed crossed the the bloodlines bloodlines of of elves elves and and dragons. This act act angered angered both both races, dragons. This races, which banded together to destroy which banded together to destroy the the House House of of Vol. Vol. Lady Lady Erandis Erandis d'Vol, d'Vol, an an undead undead wizard, wizard, survived survived the the destruction destruction of the of her her house, house, and and she she alone alone carries carries the Mark of Death.
CULTS OF THE DRAGON BELOW T h e Cults of the Dragon Below are a multitude of m i n o r fanatical sects that seek the power within subterranean realms. Sotne wish to free Khyber, the Dragon Below. O t h e r s traffic with demons or seek a lost paradise deep belowground.
T H E M O S T P R O M I N E N T C O N T I N E N T o n E b e r r o n i s Khorvaire. It is a land that has a rich variety of people and environments. Territories vary widely. T h e blasted landscape of the D e m o n Wastes borders the lush forests of the Eldeen Reaches. T h e vast expanse of the Talenta Plains rises into the m o u n t a i n o u s M r o r Holds, which b o r d e r the peninsulas and islands of the Lhazaar Principalities. To the n o r t h of Khorvaire is the frozen Frostfell. To the south are Aerenal (the elf nation) and the wild, monster-infested jungles of Xen'drik. T h e d r a g o n - i n h a b i t e d continent Argonnessen lies to the east, as does Sarlona, the h o m e of the psionic Inspired.
In the middle of the continent of Khorvaire lie the Five Nations: Aundair, Breland, Cyre, Karrnath, and T h r a n e . These were once united as the kingdom of Galifar, but they broke apart d u r i n g the Last War. In fact, Cyre was destroyed near the end of the war and became known as the M o u r n l a n d . These nations are so populous and powerful that they drive the direction of the entire c o n t i n e n t .
Trade across Khorvaire falls under the control of the dragonmarked houses. Their enclaves appear in most large cities and in many small ones as well. Long-distance travel-by land, sea, air, and even teleportation-depends mostly on House Orien and House Lyrandar. The gnomes of House Sivis control magical communication. These services are vital to the way Khorvaire's people and nations operate.
HISTORY T h e face of Khorvaire saw many rulers rise and fall before the current age. Long after the demons had been defeated and the goblins' empire had fallen, h u m a n settlers arrived on Khorvaire from the c o n t i n e n t of Sarlona. Many races, including dwarves and halflings, already had homelands on Khorvaire. H u m a n s began to trade with these races and establish ties. Elves seeking a new way of life migrated from their h o m e in Aerenal. They created the nation of Valenar and settled in many other nations as well. In time, the h u m a n s and their allies controlled the entire central region of the continent. Dragonmarks first appeared on Khorvaire, leading to the rise of the dragonmarked houses as mercantile powers. W h e n Galifar was established, uniting the Five Nations, an age of prosperity and advancement followed. Magic was mastered, leading to the sparkling towers of Sharn, agricultural abundance, and conveniences such as the lightning rail. Galifar encompassed the entire continent for a time, but the Last War splintered the kingdom. T h e Five Nations separated again. Many chieftains and would-be kings in uncivilized areas petitioned to create i n d e p e n d e n t nations.
T H E GOVERNMENT OF T H R A N E is different from those of the other Five Nations. T h e C h u r c h of the Silver Flame rules the nation as a theocracy. Religion plays a major role in everyday life. T h e first day of the week is entirely devoted to prayer, fasting, and ritual. T h r e e times a day, priests and devout followers celebrate the Mass of Silver Fire. Art and architecture are made to h o n o r the Flame. Buildings use light and soaring spaces to symbolize the glory of the Flame, giving the nation a distinct, religious look. T h e nation is devoted to good, and the destruction of supernatural forces of evil is its stated goal. However, many see contradictions in the way T h r a n e operates. Its laws are repressive, many of the church's leaders are corrupt, and fanatics have carried out inquisitions and crusades in the Silver Flame's name in the past. Still, most citizens and church leaders are honest and tolerant. Its relatively new government has caused T h r a n e to become somewhat isolated from other nations. T h r a n e has attempted to develop an economy that doesn't depend on imports, but hasn't been totally successful. Many nations other than T h r a n e worry that T h r a n e ' s religious government will interfere with their plans. T h e most p r o m i n e n t envoys of T h r a n e in other nations are missionaries of the Silver Flame. Most preach a tolerant version of the faith, but some believe that any religion other than the Silver Flame is evil.
The Voice of the Silver Flame is the spirit of Tira Miron, a paladin w h o joined w i t h the Silver Flame, becoming a part of it. She is quite literally the Flame's v o i c e - t h e only way it can communicate w i t h people. The Keeper of the Flame is an intermediary between the Flame and the clergy. Elevenyear-old Jaela Daran was called
The W h i t e Arch Bridge once connected Thrane
by the Flame and became the cur-
and Karrnath. Destroyed by the Karmathi
monarch during the Last War, it has come to symbolize the sundering of Califar.
After famine and disease almost ruined Karrnath, the nation turned to necromancy to provide new troops. The Karrnathi raised the dead f r o m the battlefields, creating zombies and skeletons to fill their armies. Since most people consider undead to be pure evil, other nations are concerned about Karrnath's use of t h e m .
The Twelve, an institute for arcane magic, has its headquarters in the city of Korth. The dragonmarked houses fund this organization.
I T WAS N O S U R P R I S E that K a r r n a t h , a nation with a long military tradition, was a fierce adversary d u r i n g the Last War. Today, though, K a r r n a t h works to preserve the peace, both with the rest of the Five Nations and with other countries on Khorvaire. Possessing strong ties with Breland, the dwarves of the M r o r Holds, and the halflings of the Talenta Plains, K a r r n a t h also seeks a better relationship with Aundair and T h r a n e , its two main adversaries d u r i n g the Last War. Every Karrnathi citizen must serve in the military, and many make careers of military service. For centuries, officers have attended the Rekkenmark Academy. Before the Last War, nobles from across Galifar came to the academy for part of their training. King Kaius Ill's extended family rules K a r r n a t h , along with nobles who have become generals and admirals. T h e entire nation is u n d e r martial law, despite the progressive attitudes Kaius sometimes
King Kaius III looks almost exactly like his grandfather, Kaius I. Few know the truth: Desperate to gain assistance from the Blood of Vol (a religious cult) during the Last War, Kaius I became a vampire. After disappearing for a time, he returned, posing as his o w n grandson. He has broken ties w i t h the Blood of Vol and now works to restore his shattered kingdom.
T H E LUSH FARMLANDS OF AUNDAIR coexist with the advanced magic studied there. T h e nation is best known for its agricultural exports and its centers of arcane study. T h e p r o m i n e n t centers for learning in Aundair are Arcanix (home to the study of magic) and the University of Wynarn—the first institution of higher learning established on the continent. Even the c o m m o n folk who till the land appreciate knowledge and respect scholars and spellcasters. Along with intellect, the ability to form strong opinions and debate well is prized. What Aundairians consider pride and a willingness to stand their g r o u n d , others see as arrogance and stubbornness. Aundairians mix elegance and beauty with practical function. Although Aundair's lush vineyards, golden fields, and fashionable garments are beautiful, most Aundairians prefer simple clothing and architecture. Aundair is the nation most anxious to start up the conflicts of the Last War anew. It is especially bitter about the Thaliost region it lost to T h r a n e . Q u e e n Aurala is headstrong, and she wants to rule Khorvaire herself. In battle, A u n d a i r draws not only on civilian militias, but also on the Dower of war wizards. The dragonhawk-an enormous bird-is the national symbol of Aundair. During the Sky Battle of Daskaran, Aundairians riding dragonhawks fought Thranes on dragonlike wyverns.
Floating towers surrounding the city of Arcanix serve as places of arcane learning. The Arcane Congress (a council of wizards) that is housed there advises Queen Aurala and trains a select few spellcaster.
T H E LARGEST O F THE F I V E N A T I O N S , Breland is also the most advanced industrially—and arguably the most powerful. Half of Breland's population is rural, and the other half is urban. T h e land is fertile, and farmers have relatively easy lives. Few rural dwellers experienced the h o r r o r s of the Last War. Breland has more cities than other nations. T h e cities of Breland have m o r e people in them than most cities do, too. Sharn is the most famous city of Breland and the largest metropolis on the c o n t i n e n t . Breland's cosmopolitan, tolerant cities attract people from all over, giving the nation an incredibly diverse population.
King Boranel was a potent leader d u r i n g the Last War, but he longed for peace. He wanted an end to the war that had been raging since before he was b o r n . He was a major p r o p o n e n t of the Treaty of T h r o n e h o l d , which ended the Last War. Breland's military now patrols the nation's b o r d e r s . F r e quently, Brelish forces skirmish with Droaam's warbands. T h e navy patrols the seaways to keep them safe from pirates.
The mounts of the Brelish Ninth Brigade are bears bred by House Vadalis.
The island of Stormhome is both a House Lyrandar enclave and an Aundairian fort. Magic has turned it into a paradise, though storms rage all around it.
House Cannith created the flying fortress of Argonth for Breland. Its mobility and self-sufficiency made it an effective troop transport. It was built for the Last War, but now patrols Breland's borders.
IN THE LARGEST CITY on Khorvaire, towers stretch thousands of feet into the air. Sharn, the City of Towers, teems with diverse residents and exhibits the breadth of E b e r r o n ' s magical technology. Day or night, the streets of Sharn are never empty. Visitors come from a r o u n d the world to experience all the city has to offer. E n t e r t a i n m e n t of all kinds can be found, from opera houses to seedy taverns. T h e c o m m o n phrase "If it can be bought, it can be bought here" speaks to the quantity and quality of S h a m ' s shops. T h e trading stalls clustered into specialized areas are just a part of the picture. T h e black market in Sharn can provide anything from rare food to stolen artifacts. Adventurers are drawn to Sharn because of the huge n u m b e r of j o b o p p o r t u n i ties. T h e r e ' s always someone looking to fund an exploratory delve, from Morgrave University to a dragonmarked heir seeking to recover a family relic. T h e city is also the "Gateway to Xen'drik." T h e mysterious jungle continent, full of colossal ruins and lost magic, is but a short sea voyage to the south. Sharn has a m o r e diverse population than any other city in the entire world of E b e r r o n . H u m a n s , elves, dwarves, halflings, warforged, shifters, goblinoids, and even monstrous mercenaries from Droaam can be seen walking the streets. Sharn is built atop the ruins of ancient cities. T h e lowest regions were made d u r i n g the reign of goblinoids, and the styles of h u m a n civilizations rise up from there. P o o r citizens live on lower levels of the towers of Sharn, and the wealthy live at the higher levels. Balconies, bridges, and platforms form walking paths between towers. Flying transports—such as sky coaches, magical elevators, and trained animals—are popular. Parts of Sharn reach into the depths below the earth. In the Cogs, heat and magic are used to process raw materials. T h e workers say the heat comes from a lake of molten lava below the city. Ruins, sewers, and other forgotten chambers are layered in labyrinthine patterns in the depths. These areas are uninhabited— mostly—and hold strange treasure and relics.
The towers of Sharn were made using both mundane and magical architectural methods. Still, even magical construction couldn't normally create such tall buildings. Sharn lies in a supernatural "manifest zone" that improves levitation and flight magic, allowing for soaring towers and flying transports.
Morgrave University is, according to its rivals, tute for "learning, relic hunting, and grave robbin easy for even novice adventurers to get the university's support to explore ancient ruins.
CRIME Sharn has an incredibly high crime rate. Lucrative illegal goods, political secrets, assassinations, and sabotage all b r i n g criminals to Sharn to do business. C r i m i n a l s a n d officers of the law have to be c u n n i n g and adaptable to last long in S h a r n . They might face a complex investigation t h r o u g h a web of favors and deceit, or they might need to fight a r u n n i n g battle high up amid the city's towers.
Battles above the city are highly dangerous, but surprisingly common. Adventurers wary of trouble make sure to have at the ready spells that can grant t h e m flight and magic items that can save t h e m f r o m long falls.
O N C E CONSIDERED THE MOST BEAUTIFUL of the Five Nations, Cyre was wiped off the map—destroyed by a blast of arcane power—on the Day of M o u r n i n g . Now it is a b a r r e n land haunted by the ghosts of war. No one knows what caused the great cataclysm that destroyed an entire nation, but there is no shortage of theories. Some say it was an enemy nation. O t h e r s believe it was a Cyran doomsday device detonated by accident. No convincing evidence has been found, so speculation runs rampant. T h e land is now shrouded in a dead-gray mist. T h e arcane catastrophe produced some peculiar terrain. For example, it created the vast glass plateau and the Glowing Chasm that lures the M o u r n l a n d ' s beasts to its cold purple light. T h e M o u r n l a n d is extremely hazardous. Deadly magical creatures created on the Day of M o u r n i n g roam the wastes. Soldiers from the Last War continue a bizarre unlife. T h e i r dead bodies d o n ' t decompose, and slain soldiers rise to fight each other in an u n e n d i n g battle. It is nearly impossible for foreigners to survive in the M o u r n l a n d . Nothing was left alive after the Day of M o u r n ing, so adventurers must come prepared with their own provisions. Navigation is also a challenge. Maps from before the Day of M o u r n i n g are no longer accurate, and the land itself seems to distort distance and direction. F u r t h e r m o r e , the magical healing that is so crucial for adventurers fails to function u n d e r the gray canopy that shrouds the M o u r n l a n d . T h e result of using magic in the M o u r n l a n d is u n p r e d i c t able. Although spells often work correctly, spellcasters must be cautious. All divination magic (used to read the future or the past) attempting to discover what caused the Day of M o u r n i n g has failed.
A charismatic warforged messiah known as the Lord of Blades lives in the Mournland. He and his small band of followers believe that warforged are superior to other races, and the Lord of Blades wants to rule over all of Khorvaire. The Lord of Blades' disciples treat him as both god and king. Some claim that he was responsible for the Day of Mourning and that he wishes to repeat it in every other nation.
Spell energy was warped and became sentient in the aftermath of the Day of Mourning. This turn of events created living spells, which move through the Mournland. Living spells feed on magical energy and kill anyone they come across.
Before the Last War, Cyre was the jewel of Galifar—the artistic and cultural center of the kingdom. T h e Cyrans valued beautiful art, magic, and the avant-garde expression of the two. During the Last War, Cyre seemed on the verge of defeat several times. Its beautiful culture and nation had slowly deteriorated throughout the war as it struggled against Aundair, Breland, and T h r a n e . An alliance with the Valenar elves and, later, the creation of the warforged were all that kept Cyre in the fight. Cyre was embroiled in battle on the Day of M o u r n i n g , and troops from all nations died when the nation was destroyed. Today, Cyre lives on in the hearts of refugees who were stationed outside Cyre on the Day of M o u r n i n g . Many of them live in New Cyre, a settlement in eastern Breland.
Darguun is a nation of goblinoids. It frequently skirmishes with nearby kingdoms, especially Breland. T h e Lhesh H a r u u c leads Darguun from his court in the sprawling, filth-ridden city of Rhukaan Draal.
QJbarra was settled by Galifar loyalists appalled at the fighting between the Five Nations. T h e loyalists, refugees from the Last War, and refugees from Cyre all have separate communities within the frontier nation of QJbarra. T h e Inspired lords of Sarlona have strong diplomatic ties with Qjbarra and view it as their foothold in Khorvaire.
DEMON WASTES T h e canyons of the D e m o n Wastes form a natural labyrinth that houses the darkest forces still active in Khorvaire. A m i d the r e m n a n t s of an ancient rakshasa civilization and the blasted landscape, the Lords of Dust and sinister night hags work to destroy the civilized lands o f K h o r v a i r e . Clans of barbarians patrol this maze of gorges, keeping the ancient demons b o u n d within the earth from escaping.
DROAAM Run by monsters, Droaam can be savage and dangerous. It is a young nation, and largely unorganized. T h e Daughters of Sora Kell (three hags with great magical powers) rule Droaam, but there are many small groups with some measure of power. T h e capital, called T h e Great Crag, rests at the base of a m o u n t a i n .
ELDEEN REACHES Within the dense forests of the Eldeen Reaches, druid sects live in reverence of n a t u r e . O n e sect, the Wardens of the Wood, guards the Eldeen Reaches and maintains o r d e r . Aberrant monsters also roam the wood, and the Gatekeepers (a d r u i d sect made up mostly of ores) are dedicated to keeping them from becoming too powerful.
SHADOW MARCHES H u m a n s and ores live in the swamps of the Shadow Marches. T h e isolated region is of little interest to outsiders, except for its vast fields of E b e r r o n dragonshards.
TALENTA PLAINS Vast grasslands and the narrow Blade Desert make up the Talenta Plains. H o m e to d i n o s a u r - r i d i n g halflings, the land is mostly wild and u n t a m e d .
VALENAR T h e fierce, militant Valenar elves migrated from Aerenal and seized this land d u r i n g the Last War. T h e unpredictable warclans frequently clash with neighboring nations.
ZlLARGO H o m e of the gnomes, Zilargo is known for its diplomats, translators, and magically crafted goods.
LHAZAAR PRINCIPALITIES Pirate lords and merchant princes control the Lhazaar Principalities. Seafaring trade and piracy have long been the major professions in the Principalities, but illegal activities are less c o m m o n now that the land is a recognized confederacy.
MROR HOLDS T h e m o u n t a i n h o m e of the dwarves, the M r o r Holds encompass the Hoarfrost and I r o n r o o t Mountains and the land between. T h e vast mineral deposits within contribute to the dwarves' great wealth.
Some children in the Demon Wastes are born with horns, sharp teeth, claws, or red eyes. These are signs of the ancient rakshasa rajahs (powerful, evil sorcerers). These children, called sakah, often become influential among the barbarian tribes.
Nobles or dragonmarked heirs often hire Droaamish monsters to serve as bodyguards or mercenaries. Ogres, bugbears, gnolls, and minotaurs are often hired for use in the major cities of Khorvaire.
In the Lhazaar Principalities, Prince Lorrister's Heavenly Fleet is dedicated to establishing law and order. Other Lhazaar princes don't care for Lorrister's ideals.
Druids of the Eldeen Reaches use observatories to w a t c h for astrological signs. This knowledge helps t h e m defend against the dangerous monsters that might be freed w h e n such signs appear.
D U R I N G E B E R R O N ' S A G E O F GIANTS, Xen'drik was h o m e to an empire built and ruled by giants. Although the facts about that empire are disputed, it's certain that it was destroyed when the giants came into conflict with dragons. Remains of the crushed kingdom dot Xen'drik's landscape, and the continent itself bears scars of a great magical i n f e r n o . H i d d e n within Xen'drik are ancient edifices, strange magic, and bizarre creatures. Giants r o a m the land still, and drow elves gather in tribes in the wild places. K n o w n as the continent of mysteries, or the shattered land, Xen'drik draws explorers from all over the world. Ages-old relics and magical secrets aren't the only things that drive the bold to Xen'drik's shores. Plain greed pulls just as strongly. Xen'drik is the one place on E b e r r o n where
valuable dragonshards of all varieties are c o m m o n enough to merit expeditions even from distant Sarlona. Besides that, the animals, plants, and even peoples that live in Xen'drik have value, academic or otherwise. Exotic pets, medicinal herbs, a n d even new magical customs can all make a trip to Xen'drik profitable. T h e fact that so much remains to be discovered makes fame and glory a possibility for explorers.
STORMREACH Ruin. Pirate haven. Gateway to Xen'drik. City of Dungeons. Stormreach has many names. It is the only port of Xen'drik open for explorers from Khorvaire. Its neighborhoods are built a m o n g the ruins of a settlement constructed by giants. Pirates used the cove and ruins for shelter d u r i n g the early days of Xen'drik's exploration. Eventually, at the request of the dragonmarked houses, the Kingdom of Galifar waged a major naval campaign against the pirates. T h e houses and educational institutions then established bases in the city, and expansion continued from there. M o d e r n Stormreach is a magical and dangerous place, alive with intrigue and opportunity. rr
Not all dangers in Xen'drik take the form of monsters haunting its unknown reaches. Deadly traps guard the secrets of the past.
Xen'drik is often thought of as tropical, but this is a m i s conception based on its most famous city, Stormreach. Stormreach, on the n o r t h e r n coast of the continent, has a tropical climate because it is almost directly on E b e r r o n ' s equator. But Xen'drik is larger than KJiorvaire, and it c o n tains many environments—its geography is as varied as its mysteries. Xen'drik is tropical in its n o r t h e r n reaches and largely forested elsewhere. Forests often descend into swamps, and rivers form marshlands, the largest of which is the Marsh of Desolation. Vast m o u n t a i n ranges, several of them volcanic,
cut across the c o n t i n e n t . Menechtarun, an e n o r m o u s desert, covers the landmass's entire western a r m . X e n ' d r i k also extends to the southernmost points of the world, where its frozen lands meet the Everice. Mapping Xen'drik is troublesome at best, though. T h e mighty magical forces brought to bear by or against the giants have twisted time and space in places, making any journey's outcome even m o r e unpredictable. Those familiar with the p h e n o m e n o n call it the Traveler's Curse, after the Traveler—Eberron's dark deity of things that are not what they appear to be.
Giants of Xen'drik come in many varieties. This fire giant is at home in volcanic regions and can't be harmed by heat or flame.
ELVES WERE ONCE SLAVES TO GIANTS. D u r i n g the upheavals that eventually shattered the giants' empire and Xen'drik, some elves escaped to Aerenal. O t h e r s finally gained their freedom as the civilization tumbled into utter r u i n . T h e drow were those left b e h i n d . Having been left to face their oppressors and witness the fall of the giants, drow believe t hat they are the only elves worthy of the n a m e . Drow are slight of build and have p o i n t e d ears like other elves, but there the similarities end. Ebony skin and white hair mark all drow as different from the elves of Aerenal and Valenar. T h e i r culture further divides them from their kin. T h e drow still hold to traditions that the elves learned long ago from dragons. Moreover, Xen'drik's wilderness is a harsh master, and the drow have learned to survive while keeping their ways alive. Most drow live a nomadic life a m o n g a small tribe, camping in the wilds, the ruins, or even u n d e r g r o u n d . T h e largest and most p e r m a n e n t drow settlements are belowground in Khyber.
THE SCORPION GOD Scorpions a b o u n d in Xen'drik, and many drow venerate these arachnids as earthly manifestations of the drow deity Vulkoor. These drow envision their goc as a giant drow with the lower body of a massive scorpion. In worship, these dro> ritually scar their coal-black flesh using scorpion v e n o m to raise p e r m a n e n t white scars. Legend holds that one tribe of drow had such skill as hunters and slayers of giants that Vulkoor visited them in the form of a colossal scorpion. Stinging every drow in the tribe, he transformed them into his image—and thus the scorrowwere b o r n .
T H E GIANTS HAD A CIVILIZATION in X e n ' d r i k eighty thousand years ago. That c u l t u r e s feats of m u n d a n e and magical construction have no equal in m o d e r n E b e r r o n . In fact, secrets gleaned from the ruins of the giants' ancient empire have changed the course of history—some claim that the techniques used to create the warforged and elemental b i n d i n g came from Xen'drik's r u i n s . If all this is true, giants have fallen far. Today, they wander the wilderness of Xen'drik a broken and barbaric people. Few giants have any mastery of the r e m nants of their glorious past, objects, or techniques. Those few who manage to tap into their heritage are mighty among their kind.
FORM AND POWER Giants come in a singular shape—massive and humanlike. They tower to twelve feet, sixteen feet, twenty feet, and even taller. Different giants have distinctive powers tied to some worldly element or form. Whether giants were created this way or acquired their powers through their own contrivance in ancient times is unknown. What is known is that giants usually band together with those similar to themselves. Hill giants are stout, strong, ugly, and dull as the earth. Storm giants are tall and muscular, c o m m a n d i n g power over the weather and wind. Bitter cold and deep winter cause no fear in a frost giant, and fire giants can swim in lava. O t h e r types of giants exist as well. Some have powers connected to the flow of magic, others to the desert sands, and a few even to death itself. The hill giants of Xen'drik, much like other lesser giants, are savage brutes. The members of their tribal bands vary in temperament, however. One band might trade and share information with you, while another band talks by throwing huge boulders or massive, primitive weapons at you. Some giants eat smaller sentient beings-and even each other.
Some giants have maintained their magical traditions. However, such enlightenment doesn't necessarily make a giant any more friendly.
A R G O N N E S S E N I S A C O N T I N E N T south and east of Khorvaire, across a body of water called the Dragonreach. T h e ocean's name is appropriate, because Argonnessen is the land of dragons. Jagged cliffs and steep mountains shield the c o n t i n e n t s interior, and few explorers who make it past this natural barricade r e t u r n to share their discoveries. In the past, unified forces of dragons fought against the elves of Aerenal and the giants of Xen'drik. Some have witnessed rogue dragons being h u n t e d and punished by other dragons seemingly sent afield for just such a task. Whether these examples of organization prove that dragons have a structured society within Argonnessen's borders is debatable.
THE CHAMBER T h e C h a m b e r is composed of dragons with an agenda. T h e C h a m b e r includes draconic scholars, who wish to observe the unfolding of the Prophecy, and activists, who want to ensure that the Prophecy unfolds soon and in a way that benefits them. C h a m b e r activists operate all over the world, and even the most reserved dragon academics have agents in important places. Although C h a m b e r members share information, all dragons are fiercely i n d e p e n d e n t . As a result, the organization is hardly unified in purpose.
The Totem Guardians suffer no trespassers to travel beyond Argonnessen's Totem Beach.
Those who sail the Dragonreach toward Argonnessen first have to deal with the people of Seren—barbarians who worship the dragons. Thirty different tribes live on the island of Seren, its neighboring islands, and even the rugged coast of Argonnessen. Each tribe of Serens pays tribute to a different dragon founder. Far from a unified people, the Serens fight a m o n g themselves m o r e often t h a n they fend off foreign explorers. A visitor might be allowed onto Seren itself. If a tribe that's encountered isn't one of the bloodthirsty ones, an explorer might even make it as far as T o t e m Beach, a long stretch of coastline from which e n o r m o u s totemic stone heads representing dragons rise from the waters. However, the Serens see it as their sacred duty to prevent anyone from passing across the Great Barrier, a chain of forbidding peaks along Argonnessen's northwestern coast. A m o n g Serens, T o t e m Beach is neutral territory. T o t e m Guardians, warriors selected from a m o n g the tribes, patrol the strand and willingly kill unwelcome interlopers.
Some dragons have duties beyond Argonne; and the draconic Prophecy. A few guard danger-
DRAGONS ARE THE OLDEST CREATURES on E b e r r o n . Intelligent and adaptable, they can be found anywhere in the world, flying u p o n their powerful wings or using their mysterious sorcery to make their way. Dragons come in several varieties. T h e most notable types are the chromatic and metallic dragons. T h e chromatics include the firebreathing red dragons and lightning-blasting blue dragons. T h e metallic dragons include the gold and silver dragons, among others. According to myth, the dragons Siberys, E b e r r o n , and Khyber were the progenitors of the world. These three discovered or created the draconic Prophecy. Khyber then t u r n e d on Siberys, and the two fought over possession of the Prophecy, breaking the world. E b e r r o n smashed the Prophecy and used the energy released to heal the dying planet and seal Khyber within. T h e blood of Siberys rained down to earth, and E b e r r o n made dragons of all kinds spring from the drops. Over time, dragons rediscovered the Prophecy in response to terrible fiends that were warring on them. With the knowledge imparted by the Prophecy, and the help of potent serpents called couatls, the dragons imprisoned the greatest fiends. After their overlords were driven into slumber, the lesser fiends scattered to the far corners of E b e r r o n .
THE PROPHECY T h e Prophecy is a mystery to most creatures. T h e dragons study the world, the stars, and the sky, the Ring of Siberys, and even rumbles from the depths of Khyber for o m e n s . Dragonmarks appear on the world for the dragons to read, and recently in dragon reckoning, even living beings have begun to manifest these signs. T h e dragons disagree on the meaning of their readings. Most scholars believe, however, that the Prophecy points toward great and t e r r i ble events. It is the song ol creation, foretelling the transformation of the future and clarifying the meaning of the past.
A m o n g the Serens, a warlord leads the tribe in military matters. Overall rulership, however, falls to dragonspeakers-masked mystics invested w i t h the power of the Seren's dragon patrons.
ous sites, as the black dragon Rhashaak does in the evil citadel of H a k a ' t o r v h a k - " t h e throne of th holy dragons"—on the continent of Kho
SARLONA, T H E B I R T H P L A C E O F H U M A N I T Y o n E b e r r o n , i s today a n isolated land, enigmatic to most who aren't native to its shores. H u m a n s built many kingdoms on Sarlona, and those realms rarely knew peace. H a r m o n y eventually crept into the greater part of Sarlona due to influence from the realm of dreams, and it was later enforced by psychic overlords. T h e first h u m a n s left Sarlona three thousand years ago, led by the famous explorer Lhazaar. M o d e r n scholars have many theories, including those that depict Lhazaar and her people as brave explorers, those fleeing from a troubled land, or even exiles. Whatever the case, Lhazaar and other Sarlonans like her made their way to eastern Khorvaire. Fifteen h u n d r e d years later, as war and strife tore Sarlona apart, a new breed of visionary beings arose with claims to the secret of lasting peace. These were the Inspired. T h e i r price for bringing harmony was the eradication of ancient traditions, dissenting views, and dangerous powers. Within two centuries, the Inspired abolished the original kingdoms of Sarlona, replacing them with the empire of Riedra. To control a large population, however, the Inspired required the citizens of Riedra to live in just a few areas. Most people of the country are confined to cities, leaving vast areas unpopulated. T h e Inspired sequestered their thralls from the larger world, leaving the less ideal parts of Sarlona outside their focused influence. These outsider realms include arid Syrkarn, the frozen Tashana T u n d r a , and m o u n t a i n o u s Adar. Syrkarn is h o m e to rugged peoples, ogres, and worse—and r u m o r holds that something s i n ister sleeps beneath it, keeping even the Inspired at bay. Hardy folk, including shifters and dwarves, inhabit the Tashana T u n d r a . Adar supports a sparse population of tough m o u n t a i n folk and spiritual ascetics. T h e region is also h o m e to the kalashtar.
In Riedra, the Inspired build great monoliths, supposedly to protect the people from dark spirits and to ensure spiritual growth. In t r u t h , these edifices amplify psionic power, cow the population, and give the Inspired a stronger connection to their home realm.
T h e Inspired are specially bred h u m a n s who have willingly s u r r e n d e r e d their bodies to nightmarish spirits called q u o r i . W h e n a q u o r i spirit inhabits a h u m a n vessel, it submerges the h u m a n spirit and takes complete control. When the h u m a n vessel dies, the quori spirit, u n h a r m e d , returns to its h o m e plane of Dal Q u o r until it can inhabit a n o t h e r suitable vessel. T h e physical body of an Inspired is one of a caste known as the Chosen. T h e Chosen are fine physical specimens with sharp minds, worthy as a residence to an ancient and wise spirit. Riedrans know that a spirit possesses the Chosen, but n o n e suspect the truth—that the Inspired are creatures of nightmare. Outside the borders of Sarlona, few know the true nature of the Inspired. Sarlona has been a place forbidden to outsiders until recently, and those few Inspired that travel to other lands as emissaries always appear generous, friendly, and beautiful. T h e kalashtar, h u n t e d and persecuted by the Inspired for their religious beliefs, know the t r u t h b u t rarely share this knowledge due to a sense of racial responsibility and a need to remain inconspicuous in foreign countries. Even if the kalashtar were to spread the facts of the matter, few would believe them.
QUORI Utterly alien, quori are natives of Dal Q u o r , the otherworldly Region of Dreams. Dal Q u o r is the place where all dreaming creatures' minds go when they dream, and quori can use this fact to their advantage if they wish to. Dreamers dream on the outskirts of Dal Q u o r , and quori live deeper inside the realm. T h e quori often use the power of Dal Q u o r for nightmarish ends. They are opposed by kalashtar who follow il-Yannah, the Path of Light. T h e quori use the Dreaming Dark—a secret network of psionic spies and assassins—to hunt down and exterminate the kalashtar wherever they might be hiding.
B E L O W T H E G R O U N D lie vast, dark caverns lined with dragonshards and inhabited by bizarre creatures. This unimaginably deep complex is called Khyber, also the name of one of the three dragons that created the world of E b e r r o n in the mythic past. T h e Cults of the Dragon Below worship Khyber, and they seek various goals they believe will please the Dragon Below. This effort might involve releasing evil creatures trapped u n d e r g r o u n d or performing blood sacrifices to reach a r u m o r e d "promised land" far below the surface. Adventurers and explorers travel to Khyber seeking dragonshards—valuable crystals that can be used for b i n d i n g . Khyber dragonshards are useful for elemental binding, but they also serve a m o r e important purpose: Veins of the living crystal that stretches throughout Khyber keep the demons of below trapped within the earth. All sorts of creatures live below the surface of the world: aberrations, h u m a n o i d s , undead, and even some renegade dragons. Anything could rise up from the dark, twisting caves of Khyber.
A beholder is roughly spherical, w i t h a huge central eye, ten smaller eyes on stalks, and a wide m o u t h . It can float through the air and fire rays from its smaller eyes. Rays can turn a creature to stone, disintegrate a target, or fling creatures and objects through the air, among other things. The beholder's central eye disables all magic in s i g h t - w h i c h means a beholder has to close its central eye, or else it stops its Dolgaunts were once hobgoblins, but the daelkyr transformed t h e m . They have no eyes, but sense their surroundings w i t h cilia on their skin. They use their tentacles to drain the vital ) fluids from their adversaries.
Mind flayers, also called illithids, are highly intelligent psionic creatures capable of attacking w i t h the power of their minds. They communicate telepathically, unleash deadly m i n d blasts, and turn people into m i n d less slaves. W h e n a mind flayer defeats a foe, it uses its face tentacles to extract the creature's brain and eat it.
The daelkyr are powerful immortal creatures born from a mystical dimension of madness. They are beautiful by human standards, but their touch causes disease, and their presence breeds insanity. The daelkyr have a thought process incomprehensible to other creatures. W o r l d destruction is a form of art to these creatures, and they have the patience to slowly bring Eberron to ruin. To destroy Eberron, they created aberrations-nightmarish monsters that appeal to their alien sense of beauty.
O N C E H I G H L Y H O N O R E D as a knightly order in K a r r n a t h , the O r d e r of the Emerald Claw served that country with distinction during the Last War. T h e Claw, as it is often called, was never the patriotic organization it claims to be. Although it still panders to K a r r n a t h i patriotism, its true loyalties lie with the Blood of Vol cult. Its highest-ranking members know that Vol, the Lich Q u e e n , created the Claw. She alone commands the order. Long ago, K i n g Kaius I of K a r r n a t h made an alliance with the Blood of Vol cult. T h e O r d e r of the Emerald Claw formed d u r i n g this time, apparently dedicated to serving king and country as elite agents. In truth, the Claw bowed to the king's will only as long as those wishes met with Vol's
approval. When Kaius I uncovered this truth, he began dismantling the o r d e r and broke ties with the Blood of Vol. Kaius I didn't finish this work, but the o r d e r was outlawed altogether just before Kaius III ascended to the t h r o n e . T h e O r d e r of the Emerald Claw holds as public doctrine that Kaius Ill's overtures of peace are weakness, and that Karrnath should have and could have won the Last War. T h e members of the o r d e r claim they want to restore Karrnath to its former greatness. If the definition of "greatness" is "secret vassal of Vol, the Lich Q u e e n , " then maybe the order's members are correct. Vol uses the Claw as her personal army, her spies, her relic hunters, and even as terrorists. Its symbol is a reference to Vol's heritage as a half-dragon.
TWO FACES Knights of the O r d e r of the Emerald Claw often wear their colors proudly and openly. Self-assured in their own moral code, they willingly do battle with any who dare oppose them. These armed fanatics are just the public face of the Claw. T h e i r apparent devotion to Karrnath and even the Blood of Vol can win them the hearts of ignorant folk. An even greater n u m b e r of hidden Claw operatives operate throughout Khorvaire and the world. The Emerald Claw is allied w i t h the Blood of Vol. The Emerald Claw associates w i t h undead, and some of its members are undead. Where a knight might do well, a vampire knight can do better.
I N T H E A N C I E N T P A S T , Khyber spat forth fiends. Rakshasas, cat-headed creatures that have a variety of supernatural powers, were the lowest form of these monsters. Greater fiends too horrific to imagine also burst from Khyber—the terrible and mighty archfiends called rakshasa rajahs. D u r i n g the Age of Demons, when the fiends' d o m i n i o n over E b e r r o n was at its peak, dragons fought against the rakshasas and their dreadful masters, eventually binding the rajahs back in the depths of Khyber. T h o u g h the rakshasas were defeated, many of them escaped. F r o m hiding, some rakshasas spend their time plotting to free their overlords or destroy the civilizations of other creatures. Some rakshasas simply lash out, trying to cause as much suffering as possible without revealing themselves as the cause. A few even scheme to seize the power of a rajah without freeing it, perhaps becoming a rajah in the process. With an arsenal of magical abilities, the ability to create illusions and alter their appearance, and an utter disregard for lives other than their own, the rakshasas are daunting foes. Taken as a group, these fiends are referred to as the Lords of Dust. This "organization" is organized in only the loosest sense of the t e r m . Rakshasas are reluctant to share their power. F u r t h e r m o r e , being immortal, they have an eternity to plan and can afford to create c o m plex webs of deceit and wait for perfect timing. Finally, their powers make it so they never need to reveal t h e m selves. They have many evil agents, but only a handful of these m i n i o n s realize that their true masters are the Lords of Dust.
FIENDS AND MORTALS A mortal must possess great power to ever be considered important by rakshasas. These fiends take pleasure in foolinjj good people into doing harm. Mortals are pawns to be tricked, enslaved, or worse. Few thinking beings decide to serve rakshasas. Of those who d o . most are members of the corrupted barbarian tribes in the D e m o n Wastes of northwestern Khorvaire. These demented people are known as the C a r r i o n Tribes. They avoid the fiendish ruins that still stand in the Demon Wastes, and they are forbidden from entering Ashtakala. the last citadel of the Lords of Dust.
lcpare to be whisked away on a fantastic adventure. This book explores every aspect of E b e r r o n , a magical, medieval world of dragonmarked heroes and elemental airships, warforged soldiers and lost treasures. Enjoy the t o u r , but watch out for dragons!
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