Each culture and race has their own version of events. However, there are several periods of time that are almost universally agreed on as having taken place. Times where one culture dominated the lands of the world for many generations at a particular advancement has defined an age.
Age of UroghoshEvents that happened within this time are mostly lost to history. Word of mouth tales kept within the Orc tribes focus on Uroghosh herself and her principles rather than what took place.
It is said that witnessing a human hunting party trapping a Griffin to stop it stealing from farmlands was the inspiration for a campaign that swept the world. Dwarves whisper of a time where other species were enslaved in droves and technology was driven from the world. Orcs speak of peace and balance where the natural order was restored. The truth likely lies between these extremes.
Very little remains of this time for the Orcs were not builders. The opposite was true, with Uroghosh's ways dominating. Tribe and family living off the land was put above large society and changing the landscape with extensive farming. Walls were seen as a threat to the ruling order and quickly torn down. No specific event is documented as bringing this Age to an end. Society was likely fragmented and other cultures and boundaries slowly returned to the world and the dwarves emerged from their deepest holds.
Legendary artifacts from this time often reflect druidic or shamanistic orders that became popular.
"We cannot return to his body," she explained. The fire crackled suddenly. Sparks danced in the air as a chunk of wood collapsed into the flames.
"It's not right, leaving him to the griffin." The young hunter bristled with frustration.
She could understand that; he had just lost a close friend. But she wasn't here to comfort the party. Taking young orcs out into the wilderness was to show them the way of the world first hand. The world was not a comforting place.
"Jhikark fell, the griffin was stronger. It earned that meal through its strength. It is the natural order."
"We should go as a group now, finish it off whilst it's..."
"No." This time she raised her voice. "Were we humans we would lay traps and bring down such a magnificent creature through trickery. Making the world safer so that we can grow weaker. The very thing that led Urogosh on her campaign to set the world right. It won. Jhikark died. In a few days we return to those hills. If we are stronger then the griffin will fall to our blades. If you are so determined, take your axe and go alone now. I will not stop you. But you will not return unless you fell the griffin with your own hands."
One day she hoped the world would be right again, as it had been in Urogosh' time. Then she would spend less time answering stupid questions from orcs who looked at the human cities with jealous eyes.
"We always have to watch them," he said with a shrug. From their walls the dwarves could see the orc tribe moving across the landscape. From here they were a colony of ants on the march.
"They're far away," Novrod countered. His chainmail clinked as he yawned.
"But they are large in number. Sometimes a small tribe suddenly gathers with a few others and they go pillaging. Hopefully the vermin never unite under one leader."
"It happened. Once. We were lucky. Headed into the deep fortresses. Their tiny orc brains couldn't conjure a way to crack our doors. But the humans and elves suffered. They swarmed across the land and tore down everything the humans had built. They don't even know the names of the cities they lost, burned to ash by the orcs. But we remember. If an orc horde marches, nothing is left in its wake."
Novrod stood a little more straight. His eyes watched the dots on the horizon more keenly.
Age of WondersFor many generations it is said that the dwarves led the world in a technological revolution. Scholars and engineers from all species came together to change the world. Some believe magic was fused with technology to create wonders that have been lost to time. Lamps that burned for months, ships with metal armour and weapons that made the bow obsolete.
Accounts of what brought this society down are strongly opposed, even if the event itself is agreed upon. Those who venture deep into the dead valley in the North of the Ixchel Wilds can find the ruins of the capital city. Nothing grows around the black, twisted stone remains for miles in all directions.
The dwarves state that an order of mages, jealous that their power was fading compared to the advances that could be enjoyed by all made a pact and called upon dark magics to strike down the capital.
Several magical orders dispute this and claim the dwarves themselves tinkered with powers that upset nature itself.
Regardless of the truth the wonders of this age have been lost. The ruins of the centre of this culture are abandoned. Darkness lives here now.
Legendary artifacts from this Age are technological marvels. Even the greatest dwarven engineers struggle to understand the principles that these devices work from.
Age of ExpansionNo one even remembers the name of the Kingdom from which King Grichen started his religious campaign. Claiming that the gods had told him to bring order to the world he began with his neighbours. Over many years the humans built the most organised armies that had ever crossed the world of Arethil. Legions of pikes that resembled a carpet of spines that could fill a valley, perfect ranks of crossbowmen that could blot out the sun.
Where the crusade went, castles were left in their wake. The Western lands are dotted with stone ruins from this age and form its main legacy. Mankind has never again reached the peak of Castle building that it achieved in this age.
Eventually King Grichen is said to have started to lose his mind. The gods gave him increasing outlandish tasks to achieve. Other religions started to take hold in the populace and were harshly punished. When his generals started to question him, the age was already starting to end.
Religious rebellions took hold of several castles, leading to lengthy sieges. Entire sections of the army broke away.
Some believe the end should formally be described at the time the kingdom stopped its expansion, others when the territory had formally broken apart. What is known is that by the time it came to an end most of the castles had been deliberately dismantled to stop them being taken by rebel forces.
Age of Chronicles
This has been accepted by Elbion scholars as the formal title of the current age. Reading and writing has expanded significantly. Most nobles send their children to be educated from a young age and even the more wealthy merchants ensure the skill is spread to their most senior employees. Many organisations and families will employ a full time scholar.
Even adventurers and commanders - most of whom cannot read and write - will hire their services occasionally to chronicle their exploits.
Categories: Core Lore