History of Uma
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|The finest warriors are born in the
heart of Ardyl's forests. From their earliest years, they have to become tough and develop
absolute physical strength to be able to confront the dangers lurking in their region.
As children, they learnt to survive in the most hostile of environments, to
overwhelm wild beasts with their bare hands and, above all, to fight the goblins and
skeletons which abound in their land. They have also put their many expeditions to the
various villages to good use by acquiring the mastery of swordsmanship. They usually end
up as mercenaries or masters of arms.
These warriors are now the strongest men alive. Their powerful,
yet agile muscular frame makes them formidable opponents in direct combat. Their strength
fills the lords with dread and there are very few that would dare challenge them in single
combat. They stalk their enemies with the patience of a hunting cat, and can swoop down on
them with the speed of a hawk. They do have once weakness, however: they dislike magic
because they consider it a demeaning means of combat. They prefer by far the incisive cut
and hard steel of the sword to the use of spells.
|Amazons are fierce horsewomen who live
in the region of Ardyl. They are entrusted at a young age to a Mother and soon become
formidable warriors, showing no fear of either physical strength or magic powers.
They learn as a group to compensate for their lack of physical strength
through their agility and flexibility. Guided by their Mother, they must continually
undergo a serious of stern trials with the aim of strengthening their spirit and making
them a match for any warrior. The worst of these "character-building" trials
involves them venturing into the goblins' den and bringing back the skull of their leader
The Amazons gain the upper hand in direct combat thanks to their
agility and the way in which they can anticipate their opponent's blows. Their enemies
describe it as being involved in a relentless dance of death.
Similarly to the warriors, the Amazons have mastered the use of
the sword, demonstrating impressive accuracy. It is, indeed, very rare for them to use
wizards come from the region of Marghor. Tradition has it that the ancient wizards always
come to Marghor to choose those who have the Gift to become apprentice wizards. This
happens when candidates are in their adolescence.
whole life is then turned upside down. They return with their master to his tower, a
solitary place conducive to reading and learning. These young wizards spend most of their
time immersed in the spell books of the ancient wizards. For years on end they wear their
eyesight out poring over scrolls, spending endless nights in their master's library. And
then gradually, they begin to master increasingly difficult and complex spells.
Unfortunately, however, the wizards' towers have now disappeared
since the lizard and rat men invaded the region. They carried out attacks on the towers,
killing may apprentices in the process
The young wizards have now been left with no
alternative other than to fight for survival. But as they have never handled weapons they
can only rely on their magic powers to defend themselves, as they have always preferred to
concentrate on developing their minds, rather than their bodies. But, despite their lack
of any physical strength, they have managed to impress their enemies with the intensity of
|Very little is known about the sorceresses' early years. Rumour has it that
they learnt their magic by themselves in the shady clearings of Marghor's forests. Others
allege that the goddess Kaliba, herself, took them under her wing.
The source of the sorceresses' power is Nature itself. And indeed, they
have no match when it comes to knowing the right plants to combine in order to create
But their most terrifying power, which may be seen as either a
gift or a curse, is lycanthropy, which transforms them into a beast, half woman, half
The sorceresses are universally feared on account of their potent
However, for some time now, the ingredients that make up their
strange concoctions have become more difficult to find. Worse still, the rat and lizard
men have overrun their territory. The Sorceresses realised that they wouldn't be strong
enough to confront them, so they had to leave the safe cover of the trees and venture
further out towards the villages.
The village inhabitants still eye them with mistrust, even today,
but the sorceresses pay little heed to this as it is vital for them to keep on the move,
roaming the land of Uma in search of new ingredients that will enhance their magic powers.
|In the past, before the darkness descended, many monasteries were
established in the region of Ormar. The prospective monks were sent to these monasteries
where they became good men, enjoying the respect of all. The monks spent many years in
this place of prayer, learning various combat techniques and spells.
Although less accomplished than wizards or warriors in these respective
arts, the monks have the advantage of being highly competent in the complementary
disciplines of war and magic. Isolated from the rest of the world in their peaceful haven,
they have had years to master the use of blunt weapons (i.e. those weapons other than
swords). The staff has become their favourite weapon. They have also studied white magic,
so that they can use it to help their neighbour and conquer Evil.
There are now far fewer monks than there were in the past. Nearly
all of the monasteries have fallen under attacks from the wyverns sweeping across the
Monks now represent good, as well as life and its combat. They are
still held in high regard because of both their skills with a staff and their ability to
|As with the monks, the
priestesses have divided their lives between religious devotion and learning the arts of
combat and magic. The source of their strength is their faith and they fight in the name
of the gods. In a world increasingly threatened every day by the Darkness, they stand out
as beacons of Good and Life.
During their travels they offer
assistance to beggars, and they are quite prepared to take on thieves in direct combat, or
use their magic to alleviate the suffering of the sick.
order to survive, assassins often begin their careers by relieving merchants of their
purses. From their youth, they know how to move around in the dark without making a single
sound and steal from sleeping travellers. Their exploits always end up attracting the
attention of the Thieves Guild in Serkesh. The assassins have settled in this region, so
that they can benefit from the lessons of more accomplished exponents than themselves. In
time, the most able of the young apprentices can even surpass their masters.
As they are cunning and nimble, assassins often use projectile weapons when
attacking their opponents in combat. Even if they are capable of engaging in direct
combat, they actually prefer to kill their enemy even before he has had the time to draw
his sword or use his magic. This tactic is very effective against the serpents that are
rife in the region. The assassins have also mastered a number of spells.
reputation precedes them in the region of Serkesh. All of these women have demonstrated at
one time or other that they have the stuff of which thieves are made. Thus, they became
members of the renowned Thieves Guild, where they could develop their natural talents
Within the guild they learnt to use their skills to
break into merchants' lavish residences to steal gold and precious jewels. They also
learnt how to kill sentries using projectile weapons and to set traps for travellers at
nightfall. Their skill set is considerable and makes them very dangerous opponents, both
in direct combat and when using long range weapons.