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Ayundell: AD&D with no magic or direct deities.


Hello, everyone.

I was wondering about getting a game going on Twitch TV involving a game world of mine called "Ayundell." It mirrors the usual AD&D worlds (largely using 1977 rules) but with no magic, instead substitutes are used- it is not Steampunk.

Here is a link to a story that explains it in part. It gives you an idea of how a game might work, hence the generic names for the characters:

Descriptions of unique Ayundellian monsters and its realms (the equivalent of the Outer Planes) can be given if anyone here wishes.

I was going to register and post at RPGnet, but looking over that site- no. This one seems better.

Sounds neat! It's a cool way of reinventing things while keeping a lot of the rules similar.


It essentially follows the 1977 style and rules, with some logical changes- for example, if an alchemist (Ayundell's equivalent of a magic-user) wants to throw a fireglobe, then obviously dexterity and strength are factors, so Ayundellian alchemists will be stronger than magic-users would be.

A "web spell" is now a resin star that shoots webbing out, darts embedded in stone or wood, pulling the webbing out.

Illusionists are masters of deception, imitation and special effects.

The Outer Realms are replaced by actual physical locations, such as The Nine Caverns of Tyranny and Torment, ruled by the nine-foot giant Archduke; his vassals include Tiamat, a five-dragon matriarchal ruling council of the first cavern.

That story explains some of it, and within days maybe I can upload another.

There are creatures unique to Ayundell: the dreaded Riverlords of the Evilrun, any one a match for Charon himself; azuralupins (almost able to match Riverlords) of The Peaceful Realm with its tall narrow crystal-topped mountain; basagons, Lisharians, killer trees, fangtraps, draverns, grey hags, wyrms, draconfolk, picayunafolk, storm steeds, roofolk, leofolk, red pandas, vulpenish, flying foxes, muscler-goons, etc.

The only problem is that it uses 1977 rules and standards, so it seems many people won't like that. For example, Ayundellian druids are always neutral nature priests.

Maybe also a non-magical (albeit auramancer) version of this one:

Here's a sample:

Azuralupins: These are the Ayundellian equivalents of the Lupinals. They appear to be blue-furred anthro wolves, roughly 5' 5 tall (females roughly 5').
Azuralupins are found mostly in the Peaceful Realm, they are its lords and protectors. They are excellent instructors, they are the ones who instruct red panda boy-cubs in fighting and detection.
Azuralupins have excellent senses, speed, agility, strength and reflexes, and are very skilled in their use. They are among the very few intelligent species able to withstand the terrible ecology of the Evilrun and to give the Riverlords real difficulty in a fight, but luckily this never comes up. Although females are non-combatants and very feminine in behavior they are not to be trifled with as female musclers and slavers discover the hard way. Threatening azuralupin young when escape is not an option will as with the vulpenish, red pandas, and many others cause azuralupin females to fight to the death, but far more effectively- those who try to harm azuralupin young usually don't live long enough to regret it.
A remarkable ability they possess is their dreaded howl, this mixing a variety of sounds including ultra and sub sonic frequencies that can have destructive effects on certain substances and living creatures. They apparently have considerable auramancer abilities (enough to affect incorporeal creatures if on an AD&D world); it is well known that things such as auras of fear have no effect on them and they can soothe by being near. Sounds of any kind do not appear to affect them. Hypnotic effects, even basagon eyelight, cannot affect them. Powerful scents and bright light do not disable them. They are as impervious to anything unusual affecting body, senses, and mind as are the Riverlords; on an AD&D world any form of possession is impossible and their similar abilities make them dangerous for incorporeal beings to even approach. They have the abilities of Ayundellian monks.
Like most canines they are social animals and usually found in packs. Unlike dragons, vulpenish, red pandas and non-humanish in general they do not have permanent homes, rather they travel about and live in simple tents, their possessions what they can carry. Azuralupins are highly skilled herbalists, gatherers, fishers, hunters if need be, flawless trackers, impossible to ambush, abnormally able to detect traps, possess incredible endurance and disciplines, among many other attributes, including many of those of the Riverlords. Internal and external parasites do not affect them, as with Riverlords they die. They can climb like squirrels and run over swinging wires. They are highly skilled at making alchemic devices and weapons. They appreciate certain kinds of music and consider such to be a reflection of higher heavens and God. No attack affecting the mind or emotions have any effect on azuralupins; AD&D death spells or body-altering spells are as useless as against the Riverlords. Poisons have little effect at the most. They are exceptional swimmers and climbers. Like Riverlords they too are adept at dealing with various environments and surfaces.
The Peaceful Realm does have an airship fleet, operated in part by azuralupins, meaning they are excellent pilots and have a fine grasp of spatial concepts even though they are not flying creatures.
Azuralupins are the bane of evil, instinctively opposing it wherever they find it. They are feared enemies of the blood drinkers, more feared than the Riverlords since they will actively hunt down the blood drinkers anywhere they are found in Ayundell. Grey hags hate and fear them. They were among those instrumental in ending slavery (at least officially) in Alliance territory and freeing the dwarfs long ago, dwarfs especially like them.

Vulpenish: As the name implies these are a foxlike race, but unlike the red pandas or azuralupins these are true "anthro" foxes in appearance, standing at human height (approximately 5' 9; females 5' 3) and having certain humanish features (e.g. the leg structure). They are a very beautiful species, their fur being red, silvery, brownish-red, or in some cases white. Males are lean and strong-looking, females buxom and very shapely; females also have large ears and hair matching their fur (females take great pride in their appearance, being playfully vain).
They are merchants, dealing in various crafts and agricultural products, but they also make certain that they can remain completely independent. As a result, again much like the red pandas and azuralupins, they are skilled at any and every task needed to accomplish this: metalwork, farming, gathering, fishing, hunting (although they dislike this), etc.
They will almost NEVER act as middlemen, they only sell what they themselves make and will only sell directly. The only exceptions would be for friends (e.g. red pandas) unable to travel to wherever they happen to be going. They strongly believe that one should profit from one's work and only that one, although they understand justifiable taxes and the like. They also believe that one's tribe, clan, or people should also profit if indirectly since this strengthens the individual. No vulpenish will ever willingly betray vulpenish, same as red pandas, azuralupins, roofolk, leofolk, picayunafolk, draverns, and Riverlords.
Females work in gardens and orchards, weaving blankets, scarves, cloaks, etc., and in some cases creating jewelery using gems, artificial crystals, specially cut glass, wood, etc. They are excellent bakers and can make "iron rations" that adventurers like: they are sustaining, do not spoil, and taste good.
Males work metal, stonework, woodworking, tools, etc. Vulpenish do not sell weapons of any sort. All things made by them are of very high quality. Unlike most other races they are rarely adventurers although they can defend themselves, their homes and families most effectively.
One unique thing about them: they are excellent writers and illustrators. Since a version of the printing press does exist on Ayundell they can sell books, both fiction and instructive. These are their most popular products, and you will not find any large Ayundellian library that does not have a few of their books in it. They favor illustrations that use black/white/red/green ink, giving such art a distinctive look. A youngster receiving an illustrated adventure storybook by vulpenish treasures it above most other gifts. Literacy is valued on Ayundell so the customer base is large indeed.
Their overall society has much in common with the red pandas, although females are seen away from their homelands more often than red pandas or azuralupins; even so they are dedicated mothers and make excellent parents. Although also a patriarchal society females have considerable say about things involving home life as that is their domain. Under no circumstances are females ever sent into dangerous situations although they will savagely fight to the death to defend their young if escape is impossible; male vulpenish will never stop hunting the ones responsible and will pay any amount of money for information.
Vulpenish do not deal with evil beings, but they have no problem with neutral beings. They generally believe in "you can't get something for nothing" but have been known to give aid to good and neutral creatures that have experienced misfortune (e.g. a flood or a bad harvest). Although they did not fight to free the dwarfs they did pay ransoms to buy the freedom of a large number from the grey hags before they were to be shipped to the Nine Caverns of Tyranny and Torment... Of course those grey hags never had a chance to use that money since shortly afterwards attacks by lesser dragons, flying foxes, azuralupins, and an airship-supported army from the Twin Realms of Magnificence smashed their dwarf slaves center once and for all. The ransoms were recovered but the vulpenish insisted it be given to the former slaves to help them begin their new lives, something the dwarfs never forgot.
Vulpenish, male and female alike, have minds that are naturally resistant to being controlled or altered, and they do practice disciplines that make them as impervious as azuralupins (AD&D psionics or control spells cannot touch them). They have auramancers among them, females' abilities focusing on healing by spotting disease, injury, etc. as well as soothing and easing pain. An AD&D victim of cerebral parasites or ear seekers can be saved by a female vulpenish auramancer.
They are on excellent terms with The Peaceful Realm, The Twin Realms of Magnificence, and The Othersrealm and enjoy visits to these places. They also enjoy visits to the mountain kingdoms of dwarfs. They will sell in markets in Alliance territory but they avoid Venesha in spite of its vast wealth; they do not approve of the extremely dishonest and decadent lifestyles there, their greedy usurous practices, and they certainly do not approve of Veneshan markets where almost anything is for sale and the fact that cruel lavish gladiator games are popular among its people (this is not considered slavery since the participants are willing, although the poor beasts used would disagree if they could). They only have extremely limited dealings with Lisharians, usually involving medicines. Since that is missing out on a VERY lucrative market this indicates a strong morality and indeed Vulpenish clerics are dedicated to God and serving others; female clerics' domains are healing and giving hope.

Note: Venesha is part of the Alliance and therefore slavery is outlawed, but unfortunately there is a loophole: While slavery is illegal within Alliance territory itself this prohibition does NOT apply outside of Alliance territory. Therefore Veneshans have mines or operations in outside areas that use slave labor in order to exploit this loophole. While these outside areas are technically independent kingdoms it is common knowledge that Veneshan nobles and wealthy elite are the ones in control. Since it is usually not possible to know what came from these places good-aligned realms and kingdoms simply refuse to do business with Venesha, and another treaty with the Alliance requires anything from Venesha to be clearly labeled as such. Sadly Venesha still has enough customers that this does not present a problem and since they are protected by Alliance military power they have little to fear.
It is amusing to note that anything coming from these "independent kingdoms" often falls prey to pirates or bandits. After all, the help from the azuralupins and blue dragons applied to Alliance territory only. 

Another sample:

The Othersrealm: On islands of considerable size in a lake truly gigantic exists a most unusual population: intelligent species but non-human. These exist elsewhere of course (dragons, azuralupins, etc.) but this place, the "Othersrealm" as humans call it (the inhabitants do like the name), is unusual in that humans and humanoids do not live there- intelligent creatures are all non-human.
Dragons, a few azuralupins, some red pandas, flying foxes, some vulpenish, picayunafolk, and others; this place seems a bit wild, but it is in its way civilized and unified. All intelligent beings are either good or neutral- the latter with good tendencies. Huge trees in forests centuries old, meadows, it is primeval in many ways.
It is here that the few good-aligned trolls travel to so they can find peace and acceptance, once there they remain. Picayunafolk are found here in greater numbers since the small creatures feel safe, they are thus much more sociable.
Humans and humanoids are welcomed as visitors if they mean no harm and may find rest and assistance there. Some, like the humanish of The Seven Noble Realms and the elves of The Brightwaters, are welcomed as honored guests; if one earns such trust then one is given a token that can gain the help of any good-aligned intelligent non-humanish. Obviously such creatures are also welcomed. Except for little hamlets of the red pandas and the town of the vulpenish (which blend in with the environment) there are few signs of what many consider civilization but this is not the case. The AD&D equivalent is "The Beastlands."

The Realm of Pure Order:  This is a fertile and efficient land of the strictest order and law, a strict hierarchy, not good and not evil, emotions good and bad discouraged but rather where all know their places and all fulfill their duties. Disruption is not allowed, but it is never cruel or kind when punishing any such action; exile is the punishment for hopeless cases. Think living in a strictly regulated outdoor factory/military base/farm of sorts, with EVERYTHING in perfect order.
This is a flat land rich in resources: woodlands, farmland, wild land, lakes, streams, and stony areas. The precision of any area manipulated is astonishing, the regulation of one's life rigid: eight hours for rest, eight hours for work, eight hours for relaxation (this of course can change under unusual circumstances). Conditions are temperate, never extreme.
Due to the way of life here all operate on the same "frequency" if you will, so mustering large numbers for combat or any task is easy to do. This realm is mostly humanish; no azuralupins, red pandas, vulpenish, trolls, picayunafolk, etc. live here. The inhabitants find the disruptive presence of outsiders to be a nuisance, although if one is not an enemy they are not hostile- but they do insist basic rules be followed, including curfews, and where one should be at any given time.
Structures are very much the same based on what they are: stores are built the same, homes are built the same, etc. It is literally like looking at a game board. Efficiency is first and foremost, but the structures are not ugly either.
There are no dragons or flying foxes here, so this realm has an extensive airship fleet. Militias are constantly patrolling, and lookouts are diligent. Even the distribution of people is orderly here.
Due to their neutral outlook on things and their orderly way of life this realm prefers to follow an isolationist policy. Tourism is discouraged, and trade is kept to specific outer areas.
A highly-efficient government bureaucracy based on distinct levels regulates this land. There is a Prime Citizen, the ruler, with a number of layers below, each increasing in size. People answer to particular higher-ups who in turn answer to higher-ups, and so it goes to Prime Citizen. He is a genius, always well-armed, and very skilled as a fighter, auramancer, song-wielder (so a very powerful individual), knows all rules, all about the land, all conditions, and dedicates his life to managing the realm. It is rare for one to be able to see him in person, although rulers of other kingdoms and realms are exceptions. Generally he will only see kings and their equivalents. Lesser nobility see lesser bureaucrats. 
This realm does not interfere with events beyond its borders and so did not take part in any of the battles to liberate the dwarfs, but slavery does not exist within their borders so when any fleeing dwarf could reach this realm he was a slave no longer.


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