Albar, Salkamar, Gynk

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Post by Karrock » Fri Mar 04, 2016 3:45 am

Albar, Salkamar, Gynk

If it is not against rules and not much disturbing I wish to start topic about these realms. In past we had more informations gathered on wiki about Albar and other realms and now it's all deleted. If it's possible I would like to ask some questions (some now, others in future) to make more clear my characters playing.

Albar:
1a. Does Albar have king or caesar/emperor?
2a. Does ruler of Albar represents gods will on earth or is he follower of gods like others?
(In first example is something like in Russia currently and like in Byzantium in past . Tzar or current president is also first priest)
3a. Do women can rule in Albar when they are nobles?
4a. Can non-humans gather in organisations ruled by them?

Salkamar:
1b. Same question
2b. Same question
3b. I suppose that Salkamar is more open for serfs. What serf should do to become noble there? And what duties has a noble except for fight for lord?
Is he has a duty to educate his folk or it's personal ambition?

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Post by Q-wert » Fri Mar 04, 2016 7:03 am

Re: Albar, Salkamar, Gynk

See:

https://web.archive.org/web/20101217070 ... bar#Cities
https://web.archive.org/web/20101217065 ... mar#Cities

Note that the old lore found there, while referenced plenty, does not necessarily represent its current state (as someone, not pointing fingers, decided to scratch all that well thought out background, as it is now claimed to only confuse players and not add to the game.) There is an npc in the Hemptie Neck who should give the rough outlines on everything you find there, though.

To your questions:

Albar:

1a: Great King of Albar, Kerrim Alganshar Karnberra of Albar
2a: Albarian nobility claims to be descendants of the Gods. (If I recall correctly.)
3a: No. Except for the very unlikely situation of a woman being unmarried and the last of her noble line. Rosaline Edwards was the princess of Firnismill (Halfing city/province under Albarian occupation/rule) and expected to marry, not to rule. (At least that is what she told one of my characters in the early post-VBU days. But as far as I know she 'did' rule there for a brief period of time.) This does not mean women have no role in ruling and politics, even if their influence is more subtle. One of the prominent examples of the old lore would be the wife of the Great King who is 'very' strongly hinted to be a powerful spymaster and webweaver for the Great King behind the scenes.
4a: Depending on region, I suppose. Central regions view non-humans as slaves. The most liberal regions consider none-humans are foreigners. Occupied terretories (as the halfling cities) most likely allow for such.

Salkamar:
Never been quite my cup of tea. Too flowery. I might read up on it when I have more time.

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Post by Estralis Seborian » Fri Mar 04, 2016 9:09 am

Re: Albar, Salkamar, Gynk

The reasons why Illapedia was discontinued are given here: http://illarion.org/community/forums/vi ... 58#p657658

The effort for administration was simply too high and it was also recognised that players and admins cannot be expected to consider three sources of lore (books in the game, the homepage and a second wiki in addition to the staff wiki).

All relevant content was supposed to be transferred into ingame books, see http://illarion.org/community/forums/vi ... =1&t=34370. If you are missing certain content in the current lore, please get in contact with GM Slightly and Banduk.

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Post by Tyan Masines » Fri Mar 04, 2016 12:02 pm

Re: Albar, Salkamar, Gynk

A lot of that lore derived from before the VBU and it was indeed always up to player creativity to some extend. There was an old world map once which showed the empires, but it was discarded for the VBU map. There were attempts to "locate" Illarion (the land is called that now) on the world map, but there was simply no good spot to put it.

I believe it's fine to assume it is "somewhere" in between though, in order to allow people to make background stories for their characters.


So here's how I have experienced people playing Albar, Gynk and Salkamar over the past 10 years:

Albar: Most stuff was said by q-wert. There is a high king and thus there must be other smaller kingdoms. I have always imagined Albar as the classical feudal medieval state, take feudal France for comparison, or the Holy Roman Empire of German Nation (HRE), although I tend to think of France when thinking about Albar. For more fantasy based comparisons, take Westeros (ASOIAF) or Orlais (Dragon Age).
Keywords: Feudalism, Court Ball, patriarchy, birthright, serfdom

Salkamar: It's an empire. There is an emperor of various families and on Gobaith, a prince was presented, reigning (or trying to reign) one of the "provinces" of the empire. The difference to the feudal Albar is that the provinces while having some freedoms are linked to the capital (Salkamar), while Albar is more of a historic capital and seat of the High King, but the individual kingdoms/duchies of Albar answer to their respective lord and the lords answer to the High king. In Salkamar, everyone answers to the Emperor. It is possible to transcend one's birth, epecially in the military.
Compare it with the ancient Roman Empire. For more fantasy based stuff, take Nilfgaard (The Witcher Series) or Cyrodiil Empire (Elder Scrolls).
Keywords: Emperor, capital city, legions, military career, free basic education, provinces

Gynk: Your swampy, partly steppe mix of various free towns with the shining, iridescent de-facto capital of Gynka. Run by trade families and whoever has power or money (or both) and not by an actual emperor (elected or else) or a King, Gynk is the "free land". It offers freedom, but no protection to its people by law, only individual towns or groups offer such. You could set almost anything in the land of Gynk, as long as it traverses from Albar and Salkamar.
For comparison, take the ancient greek city states, but WITHOUT the wisdom and knowledge part. For a fantasy based comparison, take the Free Cities of Essos (ASOIAF) or Ten Towns (Icewind Dale/D&D)
Keywords: Freedom, union, trade (guilds), city tradition, lose bonds and territory


As a comparison in current Illarion, Cadomyr is somewhere between Albar and Salkamar, having portions of both, Galmair is closest to Gynk and Runewick is another thing entirely, although I think if located in Salkamar, it would be a university or academy of some sort.

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Post by Q-wert » Fri Mar 04, 2016 1:10 pm

Re: Albar, Salkamar, Gynk

Runewick has (or at least had), according to the stuff referenced in game, close relations to the wizard city state of Lon-Angur which deflected from Albar ~1600 years ago. Lo-Angur basically is a huge university of the arcane arts with seven towers, each lead by an archmage. I remember there to have been a detailled description of the town, although I can't seem to find it. I always imagined it as a 1001 Nights/Hogwards crossover.

Reference to Lon-Angur in the official background:
http://illarion.org/illarion/background ... agic.php#1
Last edited by Q-wert on Fri Mar 04, 2016 8:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by Kyre » Fri Mar 04, 2016 1:28 pm

Re: Albar, Salkamar, Gynk

Strange the things you save isn't it? This is mainly Lor Angur but references Albar:

Lor-Angur, the city of mages.

Lor-Angur is a town which has been founded in -1647 and is reigned by mages. The seven huge citadels of Lor-Angur are world-famous. Each one of the citadels almost is a town in itself, partly even autarkic. The six outer citadels are arranged in a circle and almost built identically, the fundament of each citadel is about two and a half miles wide and nearly two hundred feet high. Groves and hanging gardens laid out by elves vegetate all citadels, also food is cultivated there. The center citadel is only about one hundred and thirty feet high, but the fundament has a considerable diameter of more that four miles. The citadels themselves are standing on giant pillar fundaments and parable-shaped stone arcs. The rooms in the “pillar-forests” underneath the citadels are mainly used as warehouses and stables, the place underneath the center citadel as marketplace. There are old mines in close vicinity to Lor-Angur, in which rare metals and gems can be found.
[edit] Land and people

The entire town is reigned by a council of mages. As Lor-Angur has already been supported by elven mages from the Shadow Forest during the time of foundation, the elven culture has taken large influence on Lor-Angur's culture in many places. Each citadel has a principal called “Lord Protector”. The principal of the center citadel is called the “High Lord Protector” of Lor-Angur. The High Lord Protector has been the town leader for more than thousand years and is considered as wise, prudent and provisional. It is commonly known that he has the gift to presage the future. The positions of the other Lord Protectors however change in the course of time.

The protectors of Lor-Angur closely monitor the protection of the balance within the use of magic. Whilst sometimes dead bodies may be used for examination purposes, the animation of besouled undeads is strongly prohibited – an act however only possible to cultist priests following Cherass, Bjolmur or Dragorog (such cultists is given a short shrift, already only co-operating with such cults is punished with death).

There are only a few, mainly small temples in Lor-Angur. Most of Lor-Angur's mages follow elven lores and in contrary to all other town inhabited by humans there are several shrines of the five creator gods.

Well-trained guards serve as force or order of the town. The moderately heavy Lor-Angur guard armour is famous, which was developed to keep – in combination with other protection measurements – harassing, drunk mage apprentices under control. This kind of armoury is copied in many places, also exported from Lor-Angur, but only those meant for the guards of Lor-Angur are equipped with magical crystals, supplying special resistance and giving their carriers certain magical abilities as well as enormous strength. Those armours however lose their effect if they are removed from the range of the crystal artefacts of Lor-Angur for a longer time and can only be recharged there itself.
[edit] Characteristics

There is a magical crystal of the size of a cartwheel on the roof of each citadel, on the roof of the center citadel there is an even larger, central crystal. With the aid of those crystals the mages of Lor-Angur are able to put a magic protecting barrier around the entire town and it's close surrounding.

The town was built on old ruins, in which magical artefacts were found. At that time the foundations of the seven citadels have already been there or are still, the center citadel was completely intact. The ruins have been discovered by academics, who then activated the protecting crystal of the center citadel and under it's protection they founded their own town supported by elven mages and fighters. In the following years the outer citadels have been completely rebuilt and the town and it's population have been increasing since then. As Lor-Angur in the mountains still is situated on albarian territory, as many villains sought for shelter there and many non-nobles study magical art and other sciences, the town has always been a thorn in the Albar leaders' sides. For sure Lor-Angur is one of the main reasons for the unpopularity of the race of elves in Albar. The conflict only ended with the takeover of the Witch King many centuries later and probably might escalate again after the rebuilding of Albar. Though the vague rumour is spread that the Albarian High King took up diplomatic contact to Lor-Angur.

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Post by Karrock » Fri Feb 24, 2017 4:20 am

Re: Albar, Salkamar, Gynk

Tyan Masines wrote:

So here's how I have experienced people playing Albar, Gynk and Salkamar over the past 10 years:

Albar: Most stuff was said by q-wert. There is a high king and thus there must be other smaller kingdoms. I have always imagined Albar as the classical feudal medieval state, take feudal France for comparison, or the Holy Roman Empire of German Nation (HRE), although I tend to think of France when thinking about Albar. For more fantasy based comparisons, take Westeros (ASOIAF) or Orlais (Dragon Age).
Keywords: Feudalism, Court Ball, patriarchy, birthright, serfdom

Salkamar: It's an empire. There is an emperor of various families and on Gobaith, a prince was presented, reigning (or trying to reign) one of the "provinces" of the empire. The difference to the feudal Albar is that the provinces while having some freedoms are linked to the capital (Salkamar), while Albar is more of a historic capital and seat of the High King, but the individual kingdoms/duchies of Albar answer to their respective lord and the lords answer to the High king. In Salkamar, everyone answers to the Emperor. It is possible to transcend one's birth, epecially in the military.
Compare it with the ancient Roman Empire. For more fantasy based stuff, take Nilfgaard (The Witcher Series) or Cyrodiil Empire (Elder Scrolls).
Keywords: Emperor, capital city, legions, military career, free basic education, provinces
I would say Albar is like Roman Empire after christianity or Greece (Byzantium) when Salkamar is like Persia. After getting power by caesars people lost much independent. Look that greek word "basileus" means "king" or also "emperor". I would say persian empire was in history much more on higher level with education and rights of men and tolerance than european empires like christian roman or Greek (Byzantium). And also Albar has religion what including persecutions. Even pagan roman empire during rule of caesars had very low relations with humanism. Similar with ancient Greece. Watch Troy and compare achaians (greeks) and troyans (later persians) in ancient and their goals. Or read Illiad by Homer.

And I also imagine Illarion like ancient or early middleage than middle or ending middleage with hundreds of countries.

Translated by google:
http://www.histurion.pl/historia/starozytnosc/art/persja___rozlegle_imperium.html wrote: So nothing surprising in the fact that the rulers of Persia, especially in the initial period of existence of the state, were famous for their tolerance towards other communities, nations and religions. Great King did not forbid the conquered people profess their native religion, on the contrary, made every effort to subjects of Persia, could live in peace. As an example of such a policy, we can cite the Jews, which Cyrus allowed to return to Palestine, and promised to help them rebuild the Temple in Jerusalem was destroyed by the Babylonians (the promise fulfilled until his successor). The Persians also tried not to interfere in the internal affairs of conquered peoples, unless there is a lawful interests in the Persian, but this rarely happened before.
Comparing greeks and troyans culture: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-vYRrOa9XfA

EDIT: In ancient Greece/Rome religions were based on fear before Gods and their power when in Persia was based on morality/ethics (look Zoroaster). That forced those cultures to think different.

EDIT2: In my opinion:
Albarian values are: fame, power, strenght and religion based on fear before death, illness, accidents, etc (Gods are rulers).
Salkamaerian values are: repairing the world, patriotism, compassion, religion based on ethics (Gods and Goddesses are teachers).

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Post by Karrock » Fri Feb 24, 2017 3:50 pm

Re: Albar, Salkamar, Gynk

My second thought.
Philosophies of two opposite cultures:
And here also Salkamar reminds Persia. I suppose before religious revolution in Albar there could also existed ethics philophers (it's theory). Sign of this can be seen in strict religion, which evolution reminds revolution Greek culture to Orthodoxy.
Salkamar is example of pre-revolutionary culture where all Gods and Goddesses are accepted (except Moshran). Salkamar like Persia saved culture based on free-thinking and free will (look Zoroastrianism). Salkamar or Persia saved philosophy and expanded it. Where in Albar whole philosophy like it was in Byzantium was focused on specific theology (fight against Goddesses, weakness).

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Post by Damien » Fri Feb 24, 2017 8:45 pm

Re: Albar, Salkamar, Gynk

The old illarion lore had a basic concept. If you read the town descriptions, you can see this concept "shine through" in the weave of the lore. Remember, it's OLD, so what the staff decides for a new background can be completely different.
The basics for Albar and Salkamar were:

Albar (Dark concept): Imagine a society where the leading families had absolute power over the centuries. Strongly patriarchaic.
Albarian Nobles make the law, the people have to live by it. Temples (not churches, the bell-tower-shape thing has to stay in our world) are usually small and some noble families may have a house god, nut in Albar no priest has political influence (or HE ends up framed or imprisoned very quickly, female priests are not allowed either). Only male gods are allowed to be praid to, mainly in the south-western regions of Albar.
Northern albarian regions are very influenced by Norodaj culture, which is nearby, and people and cultures have intermixed over the centuries. What is law in one province of Albar may not be law in another, since the noble families rule different, and as they see fit. Traditionaly, the northeastern areas are more tolerant and not poor, while the southwestern areas have much stricter and very supressive rulers, serfdom and much poverty. There is no real "use" for ethics or philosophy in Albar, since such ideas usually cause peasant uprisings. From the view of the nobles, it's best if the lower class beggars cannot read and stay out of politics and better pay their dammn taxes in time.
Albarian rulers use religion only to found their own, "god-given" positions. Another supportive thing is that magic is forbidden in Albar, only nobles are allowed to use it. That does not imply that albarian nobles are good mages at all! There may, however, be second or third or fourth siblings of an albarian noble family who are not direct heirs and have been sent to an academy, to support their family as court wizard or alike. However, nobles who are completely un-magically talented are usually looked down upon by those with "god-given" power. So, yeah, some of them may be pretty good at it, but not half as knowledgeable as the average Lor-Angurian scholar.
Peasants who are seen doing magic can at least expect to be flogged and cast out to live alone in the woods, well, the actual punishment totally depends on the mood of their noble ruler, that's why most of them flee to Lor-Angur. In a serious case it could easily be that the peasant gets beheaded. In the best case, and if the person showing talent seemed useful and obedient enough, the local lord may occasionally even decide that his long dead uncle may have fathered yet another unknown talented bastard who just happened to have been found. In many cases, that might even be true.
From Albarian View, these Salkamaerians may have brought the world the aqueduct, but their ideas of public school and smart, self-aware serf... uhm, citizens - are a complete pain in the arse because the own peasants tend to glorify their way of a "free" life and get a lot of unhealthy ideas from them. These bloited paladins are therefore a bad example for other countries and by the way, have these bastards not slain my dear uncle when he tried to conquer the crappy border villages that rightfully belonged to our country twenty-five centuries ago ?

Salkamar: It was indeed a little thought-fathered by ancient greece, rome and ancient Mesopotamia. Salkamar sees itself as the blooming center of ciivilisation in the world, and it might very well be that (only rivaled by Lor-Angur, most likely. There might be several far-away elven towns that have a somewhat...older...civilisation, but they are a whole continent further away and therefore do not count as known world for humans). You can expect all sorts of sciences, philosophy, religion, lots of debates and basic human rights there. But also a big military apparatus that acts as military, police, firefighters, road workers and public services at the same time (a little bit like the roman legion, however with paladin knights at the top and also spellcasters in their ranks). Salkamar is very wealthy due to centuries of ethical, "righteous good" based leadership. Which originates in the following:
The Salkamaerian descriptions are the outcome of an idea concept: "What would a society be like that had both its police and best teachers have both a deep spiritual faith and the ability that nobody can lie to them, with the almost fanatical belief that everybody is somewhat equal ?" Welcome to the salkamaerian Zhambra-cult paladin order. Which is one reason why you can expect almost no corruption in Salkamar, and another reason why salkamaerian leaders do pity the albarian people and usually do not get along with albarian leaders.
From Salkamaerian view, Albarian leaders rape their own country and their own kin, their people whom they should have bloody sworn to protect, Zhambra damm them barbaric bastards !

So, that kinda summed it up, i hope you can get a exemplaric picture from all my ramblings. ;)

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Post by Karrock » Fri Feb 24, 2017 9:31 pm

Re: Albar, Salkamar, Gynk

Damien wrote: Salkamar: It was indeed a little thought-fathered by ancient greece, rome and ancient Mesopotamia.
I agree with everything but not with this that they are similar to greeks/romans. Please read more about era of roman caesars and their cruelty, about greek Byzantium or holy roman empire of german nation ruled by conception of caesaropapism and about ancient greeks (like in example Sparta where only strong could live and have rights, rest born they killed or made slaves of them). Athens was exception, but even there rights had only citizens, no slaves.

I made few years ago char based on roman culture so I automatically picked albarians (because it was instinctive for me).

And about rest of text. Thank you that you wrote this it's much helpful.

EDIT:
Translated by google:
https://pl.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cezaropapizm wrote:Caesaropapism - a trend also called Caesarism, leading to the supremacy of the state over the Church and deciding on the whole religious life, including the matter of theology. Opposes the system of theocracy.

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Post by Jupiter » Fri Feb 24, 2017 10:44 pm

Re: Albar, Salkamar, Gynk

May I ask what the point of your posts is, Karrock? It feels a bit as if you try to equalize cultures of Illarion with some cultures that existed in reality. That would be a misguided way for it is, after all, a fantasy game.

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Post by Karrock » Fri Feb 24, 2017 11:03 pm

Re: Albar, Salkamar, Gynk

Jupiter wrote:May I ask what the point of your posts is, Karrock? It feels a bit as if you try to equalize cultures of Illarion with some cultures that existed in reality. That would be a misguided way for it is, after all, a fantasy game.
Two reasons:
1. Because history is great source of conceptions which make easy playing together. And history explains surrounded world why some concepts can't live long in some circumstances or why they would be unplayable.
2. I plan write more books about albarian religions or culture and I want to create them consistent.

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Post by Jupiter » Sat Feb 25, 2017 12:43 am

Re: Albar, Salkamar, Gynk

This is a fantasy game. Most stuff we do won't work in the real world ;)
Writing books is good but you should not limit yourself by trying to form the Albarian culture like some stuff we hand in the real world. You can look at it for inspiration but that's as far as it goes. There is no necessity to model it after actual cultures. Best way to ensure coherence is if you make a small summary about your book befor writing it and send it to the GMs to let them check it (I think Slightly is mostly responsible for lore stuff).

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