The Magic Earth Campaign Gazetteer: The British Isles – Eriu
The British Isles have a deep history and a rich cultural mosaic. Even though it is far smaller than Europe across the Channel, it has given rise to both powerful nations and some of the most powerful heroes and villains in the Known World.
Eriu – 850 A.D.
These are the lands of the Irish, a Celtic people. It is the homeland of Cu Chulainn. The land of Eriu is divided up into a number of kingdoms that all pay homage to the High King Mael Sechnaill mac Maele Ruanaid (Mael Sechnaill for short) in Southern Ui Neill (who, incidentally, killed his brother to attain the throne). The most powerful kingdoms of Eriu are Southern Ui Neill, Northern Ui Neill, Ulaid, Connacht, Munster, and Laigin. There are a number of smaller weaker kingdoms that owe fealty to their more powerful neighbours. Osraige is one such small kingdom, ruled over by King Cerball mac Dunlainge (CG). He is a good but impulsive king that has designs on expanding his domain. There have been a number of Viking raids that began in 845 and have culminated with a number of Viking settlements along the southeast coast. Amlaib Conung (LN) rules over all of them as King of Dublin. His brothers Imar and Auisle are his seconds and rule over Cork and Wexford respectively.
Dal Riata lays claim to a small portion of the northeast shore or Eriu as well. This region has a mix of Irish and Scottish cultures.
Brega is a small kingdom of Alfar, Grugach and Sidhe. Irish still live here but as a minority.
The Irish are the Human inhabitants of Eriu. They have formed up into a number of mildly feuding feudal kingdoms. These kingdoms do unite for common cause on a number of issues; Viking invasions and English raids are two of them.
Grugach wander the far reaches of the Irish wilderness in small clans. Sidhe and immigrant Alfar inhabit small tree towns in the larger forests of Eriu. Use the standard Grey Elf rules for Alfar. Alfar are most definitely elves but are not members of the Seelie or Unseelie Courts. Because of this the Sidhe and Grugach look on them with suspicion. The Alfar don’t act very elven either, they have been known to grow facial hair and carouse and drink heavily just like their fellow Vikings. They revel in combat like a Dwarf and are considered almost barbaric by Faerie standards. Alfar have also done something unheard of amongst the Fey, they occasionally marry humans and raise children together. These offspring are known as Alfblood (use standard Half-elf rules).
In the far reaches of the forests can be found small colonies of Forest Gnomes (use stats from Forgotten Realms : Races of Faerun, pg. 52). Rock Gnomes can be found in the craggy hillsides of Eriu as well (standard Gnome rules).
As in all Celtic lands the mysterious Sidhe can be found in remote vales and forests, their relatives the evil Daouine Sidhe can also be found in the most remote forests of Cymru.
Sidhe – These are the immortal progenitors of the Grugach. They are the lords of the Faerie lands and all of its sentient creatures. Sidhe are one with Nature and also highly innately magical. Their only weakness is iron, its touch is agony and to be wounded by an iron weapon is deadly to them. This does not apply to steel weapons (mind you the only steel weapons found in the British Isles are to be found in the hands of the English). A Sidhe takes an extra die of damage from any iron weapon (e.g. a battleaxe would do 2d8 and a rapier would do 2d6). Iron bindings reduce a Sidhe’s CON by 1 point for every day he is chained, once his CON reaches 0 he dies.
+3 DEX, -3 STR, +3 CHA, -2 CON
All standard abilities of Elves.
Favoured Class: Ranger and Sorcerer.
The Irish speak Irish Gaelic, a form of Celtic, all Irish with INT 10+ can understand and speak to Scot Gaels and Cymry. The Irish get bonus selections from Scottish Gaelic, Welsh, Old Norse, and Faerie. The Vikings and Alfar speak Old Norse and those with an INT of 10+ can understand and speak Norman as well. All Vikings get bonus language selections from all the lands they raid; Anglo-Saxon, Frankish, Old High German, Moorish, Eastern Latin (they never raid into Rome), Ancient Greek, Hebrew, Persian, Finnish, Egyptian, Arabic, Galatian, and all 3 Gaelic tongues.
The Alfar start with Draconic, Old Norse, and Alfar and have Faerie, Demonic and Gnomish as bonus selections. The Grugach speak Irish, Faerie, and Druidic. They get bonus selections from Welsh and Scottish Gaelic, Old Norse, Gnomish, and Draconic. The Sidhe speak Irish, Faerie, and Draconic. The Sidhe also have Old Norse, Welsh Gaelic, Scottish Gaelic, and Demonic as bonus language selections.
Forest and Rock Gnomes can speak Gnomish, Faerie, and Irish. They have bonus selections in Draconic, Khazadic, and Druidic.
The Irish worship the Tuatha De Danaan, the Celtic faith, as do the Grugach, Gnomes and Sidhe. The Vikings in Ireland worship the Norse deities, as do the Alfar.
Gods of the Celts (Legends & Lore 2nd Edition for reference)
See Scottish Gazetteer.
The Norse Gods (see Deities & Demigods pg. 163)
Cultural Class Alterations
Barbarian – Available.
Bard – Available.
Skald – Variant Bard replacement for Vikings and Alfar. Skalds do not gain access to spells but can use Bardic Music twice per day per level. Skalds are proficient in the Skeggox instead of the Rapier. Survival (Eriu) and Riding (Horse) are class skills, Decipher Script and Spellcraft are cross-class skills. They also use D8 for hit dice.
Cleric – Available to Norse worshippers.
Druid – Available to Celtic worshippers.
Spirit Shaman (CD pg. 14) – The lands of Eriu are infused with a primal natural magic that bridges the gap to the Spirit World. Spirit Shamans are Irish, Grugach, and Gnomes that utilize this force for good or ill or somewhere in between.
Fighter – Available.
Hexblade (CW pg. 5) – Available to worshippers of Loki only. Thus only Vikings and Alfar.
Monk – Not Native.
Paladin – Warrior of Danaan – Available to Irish and Rock Gnomes only, replaces the standard Paladin. Warriors of Danaan use the same rules as Paladin but are extremely Neutral Good in alignment. They live to perform good deeds where ever they are able. Ethical considerations such as law and justice are secondary to perform good acts. Warriors of Danaan replace Paladins for Scots. They receive the Ranger spell list instead of the Paladin spell list. Warriors are unable to Turn Undead but receive Weapon Focus (Claymore) at 1st level and Tracking feat at 3rd level.
Champion of Tyr – Available to Alfar and Vikings only, replaces the standard Paladin. These Paladins don’t gain the ability to Lay on Hands because Tyr views healing powers a sign of weakness in battle. They also cannot Turn Undead since there are no Undead to speak of in the lands of the Vikings. To compensate the Champion starts with Weapon Focus (Skeggox) at 1st level. Champions also gain the Favoured Enemy ability of Rangers at 5th level. The Favour Enemy choices are as follows: Animal, Dragon, Giant, Humanoid (Dwarf, Elf, Goblinoid, Gnome, or Human), Magical beast, Monstrous Humanoid, Outsider (Evil Norse) or Vermin.
Ranger – Available.
Rogue – Available to Alfar and Sidhe.
Scout – Replaces Rogue for Irish, Vikings and Gnomes.
Spellthief (CA pg. 13) – Available to Gnomes and Alfar only.
Sorcerer – Available to all except Vikings.
Warmage – Vikings are a warlike people, even their Mages. Warmages replace Sorcerers amongst them. Alfar may also choose to take this class if they so choose.
Wizard – The Irish have a far different tradition of Magic than the standard studious Mage.
Truenamer – Celtic magic is centered on the concept of the True Name. The greatest Celtic wizards wield incredible power through their knowledge of True Names. This class replaces Wizards for Scots, Irishmen, Sidhe, and Grugach. See Tome of Magic, pg. 198 for class details.
Runecaster – Norse magic is derived from the control of the ancient Runic alphabet. The Runecaster learns the various combinations of letters to create all the standard spell effects but since it is an oral tradition he must remember all that he learns. Runecasters are limited to Spells Known as a Sorcerer. There is only one spell component to all Runecaster spells, his Runes. These are usually etched onto small clay or stone tablets and kept in a leather pouch. Runecasters start with the bonus feat, Combat Casting. Survival (Eriu) is also a class skill for them. Runecaster replace Wizards for Vikings and Alfar. Runecaster may not specialize in a school of magic.
Viking Settlements in Eriu
Prestige Classes Available
Prestige Classes are only available to natives of a particular culture (for example, only Christian Paladins may take the Templar PrC). This applies to all Prestige Classes in all cultures unless specifically noted.
Berserker (D&D pg. 201) Available to Vikings and Alfar only.
Arcane Archer (DMG 3.5) Available to Grugach and Sidhe.
Arcane Trickster (DMG 3.5) Available to Grugach, Alfar, and Sidhe.
Archmage (DMG 3.5) Available to Gnomes.
Eldritch Knight (DMG 3.5) Sidhe only.
Hierophant (DMG 3.5) Druids must spend 1 month within a Standing Stone Circle meditating to gain this PrC. Viking and Alfar clerics must be nominated by another Hierophant to be eligible for this PrC.
Mystic Theurge (DMG 3.5) Sidhe only.
Bear Warrior (CW pg. 36) Vikings only.
Bladesinger (CW pg. 17) Alfar and Sidhe only.
Darkwood Stalker (CW pg. 23) Alfar hunt Giants. Grugach hunt Fomor. Sidhe cannot take this PrC.
Frenzied Berserker (CW pg. 34) Vikings and Alfar only.
Gnome Giant-Slayer (CW pg. 36) Gnomes only. Fomor replace all references to Giants in the PrC description.
Invisible Blade (CW pg. 44) Grugach and Alfar only.
Master Thrower (CW pg. 58) Grugach, Alfar and Vikings only.
Nature’s Warrior (CW pg. 63) Grugach and Forest Gnomes only. Must defend a Standing Stone Circle or Faerie Mound for one month before embarking on this PrC.
Rage Mage (CW pg. 72) Vikings and Alfar only.
Spellsword (CW pg. 79) Alfar and Sidhe only.
Stonelord (CW pg. 81) Rock Gnomes only.
War Chanter (CW pg. 87) Vikings and Alfar only.
Guild Thief (FRC pg. 45) Must spend 3 months tutelage with the Dublin Thieves’ Guild before taking 1st level in this PrC.
Runecaster (FRC pg. 51) Vikings and Alfar only.
Elven High Mage (FR:RoF pg. 182) Grugach, Sidhe and Alfar only.
Spellsinger (FR:RoF pg. 185) Alfar, Sidhe, and Gnomes only.
Warrior Skald (FR:RoF pg. 186) Vikings and Alfar only.
Animal Lord (CA pg. 23) Bird, Horse, and Wolf Lord are the only available forms. Available to Grugach, Sidhe, Gnomes and Irish only. To attain this PrC the character must follow and bond with a flock, herd, or pack for 3 months.
Beastmaster (CA pg. 26) Available to Grugach, Alfar and Vikings only.
Bloodhound (CA. pg. 28) Available to Grugach and Forest Gnomes only.
Daggerspell Mage (CA pg. 31) Grugach only. The PC must journey to Brega to train with the Mac Sweflauine clan.
Daggerspell Shaper (CA pg. 36) Grugach only. The PC must journey to Brega to train with the Mac Sweflauine clan.
Dread Pirate (CA. pg. 39) Vikings and Alfar only.
Exemplar (CA pg. 44) Vikings and Alfar only.
Fochlucan Lyrist (CA pg. 47) Irish only. The character must spend 3 months studying at the Fochlucan College before attaining 1st level as a Lyrist.
Master of Many Forms (CA pg. 58) Available to Grugach, Gnomes and Sidhe only.
Streetfighter (CA pg. 79) Native Dubliners only.
Vigilante (CA pg. 85) Native Dubliners only.
Acolyte of the Ego (ToM pg. 204) Available to all Truenamers.
Bereft (ToM pg. 208) Available to Irish and Daouine Sidhe only.
Brimstone Speaker (ToM pg. 212) Irish only.
Fatespinner (CARC pg. 37) Vikings and Alfar only.
Seeker of the Song (CARC pg. 56) Irish and Sidhe only.
Sublime Chord (CARC pg. 60) Irish only. The character must spend 3 months studying at the Fochlucan College before attaining 1st level as a Chord.
Wild Mage (CARC pg. 68) Alfar only.
Lyric Thaumaturge (CM pg. 67) Must study with a Bard for 3 months to qualify. Bards must study with a Sorcerer or Truenamer for 3 months to qualify.
Master Specialist (CM pg. 70) Cymry only.
Nightmare Spinner (CM pg. 74) Irish, Gnomes, Sidhe and Grugach only.
Wild Soul (CM pg. 84) Irish only.
Divine Oracle (CD pg. 34) Irish and Gnomes only.
Geomancer (CD pg. 41) Irish, Sidhe and Gnomes only.
Warpriest (CD pg. 74) Alfar and Vikings only.
Beloved of Valarian (BED pg. 51) Irish, Sidhe, Gnomes and Grugach only.
Champion of Sif (Gwynharwye) (BED pg. 56) Available to Vikings and Alfar only. Substitute Sif for Gwynharwye.
Stalker of Silvanus (Kharash) (BED pg. 75) Irish, Sidhe, Grugach and Gnomes only.
Swanmay (BED pg. 76) Irish, Grugach and Sidhe only.
Troubadour of Stars (BED pg. 78) Irish, Sidhe, Grugach and Gnomes only.
Avenging Executioner (CS pg. 24)
Battle Trickster (CS pg. 28) Gnomes and Alfar only.
Fortune’s Friend (CS pg. 38) Sidhe only.
Gray Guard (CS pg. 40) The inner circle of the Warriors of Danaan. To become a Gray Guardsman the character must be chosen by one of the Gray Guard themselves. A character may also petition for this honour, but in the rare cases where the petition was accepted the hero was always severely tested both mentally and physically.
Magical Trickster (CS pg. 45) Gnomes and Alfar only.
Spellwarp Sniper (CS pg. 64) Sidhe and Alfar only.
Uncanny Trickster (CS pg. 67) Gnomes and Alfar only.
Cultural Weapon Substitution & Restrictions
The following weapons are not found in Cymru:
Crossbow (Any), Kukri ,Spiked Armour, Rapier, Scimitar, Trident, Falchion, Glaive, Guisarme, Ranseur, Kama, Nunchaku, Sai, Siangham, Orc Double Axe, Spiked Chain, Dwarven Urgrosh, Dwarven War-Axe, Shuriken
The following cultural substitutes must be specified whenever a native takes Weapon Focus or Weapon Specialization. If he uses any other form of that weapon he does not gain the bonuses from his feats.
Sgain Dubh = Dagger (Irish, Grugach, Gnomes and Sidhe)
Krokspjot = Short Spear (Vikings and Alfar)
Hoggspjot = Longspear (Vikings and Alfar)
Pike = Longspear (Irish, Grugach, Sidhe and Gnomes)
Atgeir = Glaive (Vikings and Alfar)
Lochaber Axe = Halberd (Irish, Grugach, and Sidhe)
Skeggox = Battleaxe (Vikings and Alfar)
Tuagh-Gatha = Battleaxe (Irish, Grugach, Gnomes and Sidhe)
Seax = Shortsword (Vikings and Alfar)
Claymore = Bastard Sword (Irish, Grugach, Sidhe and Gnomes)
Claidheamh Da Laimh (Claid for short) = Greatsword (Irish, Grugach, Sidhe and Gnomes)
Mallet = Maul