Philaria
Welcome to Philaria, home to centaurs, merfolk, and driders, and all sorts of other fantastical creatures!
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1 Races on July 8th 2013, 21:44






There are many sentient races living on Philaria, although none of them are typical humanoid races (humans, elves, dwarves, halflings, etc.). Each race lives in its own separate society which, on occasion, collides with another, usually to devastating consequences.

For the purposes of this RP site, at this time only centaurs are available as PC characters.


2 Re: Races on July 8th 2013, 22:51






Centaurs


In simple terms, a centaur is a half-humanoid race, with the upper body and facial features of a human and the lower body of a horse. Although they are generally a peaceful race, they suffer from all the whims and fancies of any sentient species.

Physical Description


A centaur is as big as a heavy horse, but much taller and slightly heavier. The average centaur stands 7 feet tall and weighs 2,100 pounds.

Despite their size and generally gentle nature, no adult centaur goes unarmed. Their favorite melee weapon is the longsword. When scouting or hunting, they usually carry composite longbows, although some centaurs favor a lance over a bow.

The humanoid upper torso is bare skin, lacking any significant hair except in the underarms and on their heads. The hair on their heads, more properly termed a "mane," descends down the back of the neck and along the spine to the narrowest point between the shoulder blades. The natural color of their mane matches that of the tail and complements their equine lower torso (i.e., a centaur with palomino coloring would have golden hair on their equine portions and a cream or white mane and tail). Their underarm hair matches their mane. Centaur hair colors and color combinations come in natural horse colors, although they may choose to dye their mane, tail, or even all of their body hair.

Centaurian women generally wear some type of one-shouldered top to cover their breasts; the top may be open on the back, cut off at the midriff, or cover their entire torso, depending on personal preference, although women who participate in hunting, scouting, or other physical activities generally choose tight-fighting shirts. The men wear a loincloth (reminiscent of the Japanese fundoshi) and often enhance their appearance with a type of half-cape that covers their hindquarters, although men who participating in hunting, scouting, or other physical activities generally forgo the cape and only wear the loincloth.

Psychological Profile


Individuals


On the whole, centaurs are gentle creatures, although somewhat xenophobic. They revere life and honor their kills when hunting. Although they will viciously defend their lairs and kinfolk, they dislike killing other sentient creatures and after a battle will perform a cleansing ceremony to honor their enemy's fallen.

As with most beings, they tend to become rowdy, boorish, and aggressive after imbibing too much alcohol. Alcohol is the primary cause of unprovoked violence in the society.

Every individual centaur, of course, varies in his or her level of gentility. The ones who tend more toward violence are often shoved into a warrior class, while those who are overly gentle tend to gravitate toward diviner classes. Mage types tend to fall somewhere in between, since magery often requires a certain level of aggression.

Society


Solitary centaurs are usually out hunting or scouting. Companies and troops are usually hunting or scouting in force. Most of the members of a centaur tribe remain near their lair. Most of the centaurs in the tribal lair are female; while the males are out hunting and scouting, the females lead and administer the tribe. A third of a tribe's population is young.

The typical centaur lair consists of a single large glade and several pastures, with a good supply of running water. Whenever possible, the main lair is located within a grove of trees, relatively concealed from outsiders. Depending on how recent the last flood cycle was, there may or may not be brick- or stone-walled public buildings (shops, schools, etc.). Individual families usually build wooden structures as homes, varying from simple huts and lean-tos to large homesteads.

Centaurs are skilled in horticulture and often cultivate useful plants near their lair. In dangerous, monster-infested areas they plant thick barriers of thorn bushes around their lair, dig pits, and set snares.

Centaurs survive through a mixture of hunting, foraging, fishing, agriculture, and trade. Though they shun dealings with most other beings, centaurs do trade with others, especially for food and wine. These are paid from the tribe's treasury, which consists of the booty of slain monsters.

The size of a centaur lair's territory varies with its population and the nature of the area it inhabits. Centaurs do not object to sharing territory with some other sentient creatures. The attitude of a centaur toward a stranger in its territory depends on the visitor. Some are politely asked to leave, some are tolerated, and some are welcomed. Centaurs deal with monsters according to how much of a threat they are to the welfare and survival of the lair: if a giant or dragon were to enter a lair's territory, the centaurs would relocate, but they would attempt to kill trolls, orcs, and the like.

Most centaurs revere a deity named Sehanine Moonbow, the goddess of the moons; some worship Skerrit, who is a god of nature and community.

History


Once, the world was covered more in land than in water, but that Sehanine Moonbow and Lolth engaged in battle over the planet for many generations. Exhausted by the bickering, Skerrit flooded the planet to end the conflict, then allowed each of the goddesses to spare one population of their followers. Sehanine choose to create a nearly-perfectly-round island continent, reminiscent of the moon, for her centaurian children, leaving the flotilla of floating islands (left from Skerrit's wrathful flood) to the drider followers of Lolth. Since the underground drow cities had been drowned by the flooding, Lolth had only the driders left.

To remind both deities and their followers of their foolhardiness, however, the drider islands have been left to float around the seas, borne by the winds and tides; and the continent is regularly besieged by bouts of floods. Every 8.25 centaurian years, one quadrant of the continent is submerged for two weeks; every 107.25 years (the 13th flood), the entire continent, except for the mountain highlands, is flooded for a month; and every 1,393.25 years (1 year prior to the 13th flood of the 13th flood cycle), the entire continent, except for the mountainous interior, is flooded, and remains flooded for two years.


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