Vocab. Exercise: Name that kingdom!
|From:||Roberto Suarez Soto <ask4it@...>|
|Date:||Tuesday, June 24, 2003, 11:35|
I'm on a short holiday, and so I've got time to waste. And one
of the things that came up for that was to prepare yet another conworld
for a quick RPG campaign. This conworld grew from the idea of the
"Secret Wars", of comic fame: several different peoples and lands are
brought together into a continent of some lost world, and forced to
cohabitate - or fight. Yes, it's not a very plausible thing, but
remember: it's only for fun :-)
But now, there's one thing that I'd like to do: give names to
each of these kingdoms. I thought that it would be cool to have every
kingdom to be named in a different conlang, so I started searching on
the Internet. But then I thought: "Hey, why are you doing this if maybe
the always kind and helpful people of CONLANG would do it for you?" };-)
Take it as a vocabulary exercise: I tell you a bit about every
kingdom and its inhabitants, and you devise a name for them in your
conlang(s). I'll post the "winners" a bit after, and also a map showing
the kingdoms; by now, the "unnamed" map is here:
Don't be too picky with the drawing of kingdom limits, I know
it's quite rough and unprecise O:-)
Here's the list:
- The barbarians:
Your typical human celtic-alike barbarians from any fantasy
setting. They live in a highlandish territory, quite cold (up from the
60 degrees meridian). Warlike, hardy people.
- The "believers":
Humanoid people resembling neanderthals. Very ingenuous, very
optimistic, very "good-hearted", quite a bit stupid. I called them "the
believers" because their religion is their strength: they believe in
their god (or gods, or goddess; not decided yet) heartily, and though
they live in a poor and dangerous land full of taiga and rocks, they
always carry on. The deity will save them, they're only waiting for it
I've got to decide yet if these are humans that ride something
or simply centaurs. In any case, they're quite alike to typical Native
American Indians in philosophy and views of the world. They inhabit a
big prairie, cold in the north and almost desertic in the south.
Run-of-the-mill wood elves, not unlike D&D (tm) ones. Primitive
in technology (no stone building, no metal armors). They distrust anyone
outside their forests. Secretive, a bit cold-hearted (doesn't
"empathize" well with other races), prefer hiding to fighting unless
- "Tall" elves:
Elves like the 1st and 2nd age Noldor of "The Silmarillion":
tall, strong, ambitious. Great fighters and builders. Talented for
magic, but not really fond of it: theirs is a spartan (in many ways)
style of life. Dignity and honor are the foremost issues in their
culture. They like to always play the victim, and while in company of
people of other races they're always complaining about how they have a
difficult life and how they are the only ones "up to the task" to bear
it. 0% modesty, 0% sense of humour. They live in a set of lakes inside a
jungle. This is not their natural habitat, but they adapted (other
reason to victimize themselves about).
What to say about them? :-) These are quite common orcs, being
cruel, lovers or random destruction and mayhem, absolutely unable to be
disciplined unless by force, and not very bright. They live in a dark
and dangerous jungle, quite prehistoric in fauna and flora, organized in
small clans (to which they are very loyal) that fight each other to
defend or conquest new lands, and their neighbors for that or any other
reason. The are hunter-gatherers, knowing anything about agriculture
("Ha! Those plant-growing weenies!").
Ant-like culture with differentiated castes: workers, warriors,
"breeders" (that double as military charges) and queens. Inhabit big
cities built in the style of termites and ants inside a mildly dense
jungle and savannah (on the south). They have no feelings whatsoever,
caring only for what's logical and good for the colony.
- The spellcasters:
Highly magical beings with two castes: sorcerers and warriors.
Even warriors are magically gifted. Their society is driven by power:
the most powerful is the one that rules. So, they like to constantly
remember everyone how powerful they are, indulging in all kinds of
futile and stupid uses of magic. Cruel, though not really evil; cynical
to the point of exhasperation, pompous, full of themselves to no end.
They are all black-skinned, with black, pupil-less eyes and grey or
white hair. Sorcerers are almost always fat because of the lack of
physical exercise, and have always a few warrior servants to mistreat
and shout at. Their lands are hot, humid jungles and swamps.
- The birdmen:
Small (5' height), compact humanoids. They look like a mix
between a man and a pterodactil. Winged, but also with arms. Inhabit
volcanic deserts and a few isles of similar nature. They are always
whining, for anything that can be complained about: it's cold, it's hot,
I don't like the sun, I don't like darkness, I'm hungry, I'm thirsty ...
They don't have lips, so their speech is almost inintelligible (can't
pronnounce bilabials or labiodentals). Brave, hardy, loyal, but a real
PITA at any time.
- The builders:
Akin to dwarves or gnomes (D&D ones). Small, not very strong,
bearded or non-bearede. Shy, sceptic of religions in general, very
intelligent. Notorious for their wonderful works in mechanical artifacts
and beings. Good alchemists, though not really good smiths. They inhabit
a warm cuasi-peninsula on the West.
- The snake-men:
Small (5' 5"), nimble, reptilian beings that inhabit a sand
desert on the far south. Diplomatic and manipulative, their expertise is
always to agree with everyone. Not really trusted by anyone, but always
listened to by everyone.
And then, there are the two "non inhabited" kingdoms:
- The "Dragon wastes":
A mountainous and rocky land where many dragons dwell. Limits to
the north with the Tall Elves' and Orcs' kingdoms, and to the south with
the snake-men lands.
- The "Foul Lands":
Extense strip of land that is inhabited by foul creatures and
evil spirits. Limits, on the west, with the Nomads and the Insectoids;
on the south, with the Spellcasters; on the North, with the Believers;
and on the east, with the Birdmen.
This is it. Any takers? :-)
Roberto Suarez Soto