Road to Adventure
Somewhen at the beginning of time the gods created the universe out of the void of the Astral Plane. First they created their homes, scattered and as diverse as themselves, moving about the Astral in a great dance. And from that dance came the whirling chaos of the elements. Like elements were attracted to reach other and grew to form the four elemental planes which were in turn pulled by the dance of the universe.
As the music of creation quieted down the gods saw, at the center of it all, a world they had not imagined. A wondrous thing born of all of them yet none of them. Each of them sought to claim it for themselves. A war began between gods. A terrible war which saw the creation of all manner of creatures to be used as soldiers. A great War which shattered the magnificent world into three.
When they realized what they had done, they agreed to a treaty which would prevent any more damage to the world. Unfortunately the world they left behind was somehow less majestic, less savage, less sinister, and less beautiful. Part of that beauty and terror exists in Shadow. Part of that savagery and majesty exists in the Wild. While these places can be reached, the reality is that world is not as it once was and will never be again.
The universe is often depicted with three zones: Central, Inner, and Outer, with the Astral Plane beneath, above, surrounding, and permeating it all.
The Central Planes
- Material World – also sometimes called the mortal world, it is the plane of existence for a majority of mortal beings. It is a place of great change as beings live and die. It is also a place of stability as it stands at the center of the great dance of the universe.
- The Shadow Realm – a dark, terrible, and sinister place. It is home to many mortals and creatures that skulk in shadows. While some find it depressing, others find beauty and comfort in the dark.
- The Feywild - a savage and often unforgiving place. It is home to creatures that favor the wilderness and unfettered living.
- The Ethereal Plane – the power that tore apart the material plane left behind a residue that created the mostly formless Ethereal Plane. While it takes on the form of the plane closest to it at any given point, it permeates the material plane and its two reflections.
The Inner Planes
- The Elemental Planes – each of the elements formed islands of uniformity within the churning unknown that is the Elemental Chaos. While there are four basic elements that appear to make up the material worlds that have formed elemental planes, there are demi-planes of all the possible combinations.
- The Elemental Chaos – the raging storm of elemental energy surrounding the central planes and engulfing the inner ones. This is the seething mass of ever-changing material. The raw stuff that makes up the material planes.
The Outer Planes
The outer planes are great and varied. They are the homes to the gods and the beings that directly serve them.
The Astral Plane
The Astral Plane is the dance floor upon which the universe moves. Before there was anything, there was the Astral. The great expanse out of which and in which the planes were created is really indescribable. It is at the same time nothing and everything. It permeates everything,yet time and distance mean nothing in the Astral. It's true nature is unknowable, perhaps even to the gods.