Quest for Utopia
When the planet was young, it was a primordial paradise. This lasted for millions of years. Then, near where the Elemental Plane of Life melds with the Material Plane, things were starting to change. A number of plants obtained sentience, and obtained a new humanoid form. At the same time, this same phenomenon was occurring to a couple prehistoric canines (dire wolves and dire hyenas, and yes I know hyenas are NOT canine, but I made it this way to fit in my campaign), as well as a prehistoric feline (dire lion) and a dire grizzly bear.
Over a few million years, each of these new anthropomorphic beings “migrated” and evolved. The plants, now known as the verdani, settled in the western portion of the land. The dire wolves became known as dalgar, and they also evolved into what would later be known as the okwaho and tokala, and they settled the southern portion, along with their cousins, the adjule, who then evolved into the gnoll and the kahani. The bears became the karhu, and evolved into 4 distinct subraces: the grahlig (grizzly), mustana (black), talvi (polar), and shongmao (panda); and they settled the northern lands. The lions settled the east, and evolved into 4 distinct subraces: the bahal (lions), kotiya (tiger), ikati (leopard), and duma (cheetah).
These races had conflicts between them, but overall lived in peace. About 30,000 years ago, a mortal being discovered the art of magic, a power reserved only for the fey and dragons. This mortal, a dalgar in the frozen southern extremity of the canid territory, was Azreal Doravon. He used his new-found power to decimate his own race for a wrong a few members committed against him. His race was easily wiped out, having no way to effectively fight against magic. Afterwards, he was the sole remaining dalgar, and thus became immortal due to a very little known property of the planet. Upon ascending to immortality, he made the choice of residing on the outer plane of Arborea. About this same time, the adjule died out. The last remaining female, named Pachycrocuta, named herself supreme ruler of the gnoll and kahani peoples, thus cementing thier matriarchal society.
A thousand years after the extinction of the dalgar and adjule, a new race was coming into being. The fey of the west had begun to reproduce with the verdani for the past five centuries. Their offspring eventually became the elves. The elves spread to the rest of the planet over the centuries, and ended up reproducing with the local fey. The earthen fey of the southeast coupled with the elves, and produced the dwarves. Humans came from the offspring of elf and the more airborne fey. The orcs of the fiery hell-land of modern Chemancia are the offspring of elf and fire fey. Halflings are the product of elf and dwarf, while the gnomes are the children of dwarf and water-based fey.
One hundred eighty thousand years passed, and the races grew into their own. Pachycrocuta was overthrown, so retreated to Arborea herself. This new arrival brought Azreal’s attention to the world, and he returned to Xayrax. Hidden in the frozen wasteland that came from his original homeland, he devised a plan to turn the races on each other, thus eliminating them and returning the planet to the primordial paradise it once was. What transpired would later be referred to as the Great Race War. Azreal created constructs of each of the race, and planted them to sow strife and discord. His creations succeeded in causing conflict between each of the races, so he cause a massive earthquake that seperated his homeland from the main continent, and froze himself in stasis.
While he was successful in starting a war, the war didn’t accomplish what he set it to do. The Great Race War lasted 500 years, and it has been about 3000 years since the end. The current year is 396 FE (fall of the empire).