Generations ago, when Grathis, the God of Knowledge and
Change and Magic, walked TalíVorn, his bizarre form writhing with
mutation as he body shifted and altered with every passing moment, his
immense power to alter reality causing the ground to shift under his
feet. It was Grathis who first cast spells on TalíVorn, the other Gods
following after him. It was Grathis who allowed TalíVorn to hold life
for the 12 Elder Races. It was Grathis who constructed the Mani.
Knowing that he would not always be there to provide a source for
magic, Grathis placed a small portion of his energy loose in the
atmosphere and gave it instinct. By responding to certain thought
patterns, Mani would react and cause the effects that the 12 Races
called Magic. Though this kills the Mani, it also causes the Mani to
divide. Naturally, a newly divided Mani cannot read the thoughts of
others instantly, meaning that the amount of magic that can be cast in
one area at one time is limited.
However, the mass creation of the Mani had many side effects. It
stained the moon, Killar, blood red, caused the Vorn Glass Wastes,
gave rise to many strange animals and, most brutally and unexpectedly
of all, created the Beasts. Monsters without any real form, the first
Beasts, created from living things that mutated under the effects of
the magic, were essentially mindless, mewling magic born spawn that
died within moments.
Yet as time passed more stable mutants begin to appear, strange forms,
combined goats and wolves, cow and bear, yet all standing and moving on
their hind legs like any of the other Races. These Beasts had the heads
of goats or horned cows and the strength of bears, physically larger
then humans with a bestial cunning that belied there savage appearance.
They hate the other Races because they are not cursed as the Beasts
are; they are not altered from their natural forms as the Beasts are.
Living in roaming war bands, the Beasts prefer the deep forests, safe
from the prying eyes of other races. Yet this is not because they are
full of fear, or nervous of the other Races. It is because they are not
stupid. Beasts live by raiding, buy attacking caravans and portal
communities, villages and isolated homes, killing anyone in the area,
stealing anything they can easily carry and vanishing back into the
woods again. They take the flesh of those they kill so that they can
cook or devour the meat raw, baying out their blood-lust to the stars
Beasts worship their own dark pantheon of gods, having no understanding
of the True Gods of TalíVorn, preferring to place their trust in
deities mixed with the darkest of emotions, gods of hatred, darkness,
lust and terror. Though they do not know it, the Beasts are indirectly
simply worshipping the Gods Killar and the Corrupter. Killar admires
the Beasts for the carnage they cause, the devastation that is left in
their wake, and the Dark God, the Corrupter, sees in the Beasts what
they truly are. Abominations, mutants, horrific merging that mock the
forms of the other Races.
It is said that no one Beast is identical to another, that they are all
unique and singular in their creation and mutation. Yet they do share
some basic similarities. All have the legs of a goat or a cow, cloven
hooves, heavy limbs, shaggy, hairy bodies and long curving horns.
Indeed, it is the horns that show how powerful a Beast is, for they
grow longer as they age, curving round into ever more elaborate shapes.
Moreover, the only way for a Beast to grow old is to survive and the
only way to survive is to be strong enough to survive. Thus strength
and horn length are inescapably interlinked within the Beast tribal
Yet physical strength alone would not serve the Beasts. They would be
cut down by those who control the Mani before they could bring their
crude weapons to bear. Therefore, Beasts have their own magic users,
their own Shamans. These Shamans control the flow of magic
instinctively and are born with the knowledge that they need to cast
their spells and control the Mani. They hold a high place in the
society of the Beasts, feared and respected in equal measure, for the
Beasts believe that those who kill a Shaman are cursed by the Gods and
will in time be struck down for their crime. Naturally, these Shamans
do nothing to alter their point of view, knowing that with fear comes
respect and with respect comes power. Indeed, it is rare for the Beasts
to actually attack or move camp without consulting the Shaman, though
it seems that some of the stronger willed Beastlords, the most powerful
Beasts, do not always lead their tribes as the Shamanís advice.
The Beastlords are, as previously stated, the most powerful of all the
Beasts, the leaders of their tribes and their elite fighters. They are
possessed with the strength of a beast and the feral cunning of a man,
their combat skills honed by their desire to survive and kill their
opponents on the battlefield. By nature, most Beasts are tribal and
will fight other Beast herds for the best raiding grounds, slaughtering
each other to get the best areas to live in. Yet Beast tribes can also
be united under a powerful enough Beastlord and for this, the Beastlord
needs to call a group of herds to one place.
The only places that the Beast herds can gather are Waymarkers. These
stones mark junctions in the flow of Mani through the atmosphere and
are thus holy sites to the Beasts. The Mani gather here in great
numbers and the Beast herds can sense their presence. The Beasts will
not spill each otherís blood within sight of the Waymarker and thus it
is the only safe place for a Beastlord to call together the scattered
herds. When the Beastlord arrives, he climbs atop the Waymarker and
sounds the immense horns that are placed atop these stones. The
shivering blasts that echo across the forests and plains attract other
Herds who travel to the Waymarker.
These Waymarkers, if large and powerful enough, will have their own
guardians, called the Kkrassh in the Beast Tongue, though Humanity
calls them Minotaurís after the resemblance that the immense, horned
creatures bear to the monster of legend. The Minotaur's are both
immensely strong and almost twice the size of a normal Beast, their
intelligence less then other Beasts and they become frenzied at the
sight of anything that is not a Beast. Indeed a frenzied Beast is a
terrifying prospect, a monster that can heft and throw small trees
across clearings, or tear a man in two with it's bear hands.
Once a group of herds have gathered, the Beastlord who called them
there will explain why and what his plan is. Normally it will be some
sort of raid or attack that requires more Beasts then his own herd
consists of. The other Beastlords will then agree or disagree with the
plan, until a concordance is reached. At this point, every Beastlord
present will fight to determine who will lead the attack. This is a
weapon less combat, though the horns, teeth, hooves and claws of the
Beasts are more then enough to kill each other with. Indeed, it is rare
for any Beastlord not to bear the scars of combat, the marks from the
horns and teeth from other Beasts.
Yet Beast herds are factitious and argumentative, their bestial natures
preventing them from working together for any extended period of time.
Indeed, it is probably this that has allowed the other Races to survive
on the plains and within the forests for as long as they have. The
Beasts are the most numerous Race alive, massively outnumbering even
the expansive humans, yet scattered across an immense area. Should a
powerful and forceful enough leader arise within the Beasts and unite
the scattered tribes, then the results would be disastrous.
The Elves would be swept away, the city of Lathrandar not built to
withstand any sort of large siege, relying upon its isolation and the
defence offered by the trees. Though the casualties inflicted upon the
Beasts would be horrific, it would be nothing more then a drop in the
ocean, a single tendril of an immense war host, numbering in the
millions, a savage, screaming mass of fur and fangs, howling for the
blood of the other Races.
Krathar come! Krathar break human city! UNLEASH THE HUNT!
Krathar Gorelord the Strong, before an abortive assault on an Order
outpost in Lathrandar Forest. No trace was found of the outpost or it's
inhabitants, other then the above words scrawled on a blackened wall.
Hasskka, the Dark! Craaskkak, the Cruel! Nassak, the Fear! Gods of Beasts! Give Nizkkash strength!
A Beast Shaman calling for unnatural superhuman strength. Though crude, the spell does appear to have worked.