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A Safe Passage through Britannia
A Safe Passage Through Britannia
Commissioned by Lord British
Compiled by Nystul, Magician to the Court
Transcribe by Austin Grossman, Scribe
Introduction by Lord British
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3 A Brief History of Britannia
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5 Britannia Today
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9 Leaders of Britannia
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10 Other Planes of Reality
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15 Character Classes
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20 Conclusion by Nystul
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Be it known, that in this troubled time of reconstruction, I,
Lord British , have decreed that there shall be assembled a manuscript,
entitled A Safe Passage Through Britannia.
This document shall serve all those who would travel within my lands, and
adress a new generation of Britannians, who are only now coming of age and
exploring the world around them. Those who are unschooled in history shall
learn of Britannia's glorious and turbulent past, and of the troubles that beset
these lands. They shall learn of the Stranger, a hero from another world, who
triumped over these troubles an became the Avatar. More, they shall learn of
our most recent trial, through the insidious corruption of our land by the
Guardian, soul of evil, and his failed attempt to enter our realm in physical
form. In addition, those who read this work shall be taught what little we know
of the worlds that lie beyond our own.
Those who would walk the paths of adventure shall learn of the many
professions that able young women and men may follow in this world , and the
physical and mental skills they must acquire in order to achieve mastery over
the trials that shall beset them. They shall be introuced to the arcane forces
that underlie the reality of the visible world, forces that wizards can martial
at their command . And most importantly, the reader shall learn of the Eight
Virtues - the Way of the Avatar - the moral principles that maintain an
atmosphere of peace and mutual benevolence among our citizens.
Lastly, there shall be included a Bestiary, a catalogue of creatures, including
both those that occur in nature and those that are the creations of sorcerers,
those that live naturally an those unnatural beings that
have died once, yet live on in some form. Let the Wise Adventurer take note of
what is contained in this section, as knowledge of one's opponent is often the
key to survival.
For the purpose of compiling this knowledge, I hve enlisted the
unequaled wisdom and scolarship of Nystul, Chief Magician of the Realm. I can
imagine no more complete source of information and advice for the young
A BRIEF HISTORY OF BRITANNIA
The history of Britannia is a long and turbulent narrative, which for conve-
nience I shall divide into seven parts, corresponding to seven crises which
menaced the land.
The earliest recorded histories take place during a period
known as the Age of Darkness. At this time, the land as a whole was known as
Sosaria, and Lord British ruled a smaller nation called Britain. This was a
chaotic and difficult period to live in - rival states were constantly
at war with one another, and bandits and monsters roamed freely over the
countryside, preying on those weaker than they. It was in this period that the
Triad of Evil came forth to threaten the land.
The first of these was Mondain, a young man who had
slain his father (a powerful and respected sorcerer in his own right), and
seized a powerful magic jewel, which he believed could make him immortal. He and
his evil servants ravaged the land and began building a kingdom of
darkness that threatened to encompass all Sosaria. It was at this time
that the Avatar, then known only as the Stranger, first came forth from the
other world, to answer the call of Lord British. It was the Stranger who
defeated Mondain, and restored peace for a brief time in Sosaria.
This peace soon ended, however, with the rise
of Minax, Mondain's apprentice and his child bride. Minax organized the
evil beings of Sosaria under her powerful direction, and again devastated
the land with dire sendings. Again, the Stranger appeared and battled the evil
confronting the land, traveling through time and space, finally tracking Minax
to the Time of Legends before slaying her.
After the demise of Minax, Lord British, widely recognized for his wisdom
and virtue, ascended to the rulership of all Sosaria. Soon, though, a
mysterious fiery island rose from the sea, and once again peace
in Sosaria was disrupted. This time, the Stranger assembled a group of
four heroes, and these four crisscrossed the land and braved the horrors of
Britannia's underground dungeons, until they had located and destroyed the
mighty Exodus, mystic child of Mondain and Minax's union, part human and part
This was the end of the Triad of Evil, and in the ensuing celebration
Sosaria was renamed Britannia, a single nation united under the rule of Lord
British. A period of growth and prosperity followed, and Lord British turned his
attention to philosophy, the nature of virtue, and the perfectibility of
humankind. In each of Britannia's eight cities he established a shrine devoted
to the study and perfection of one of the Eight Virtues. In addition, he founded
institutions devoted to the
three great principles of Truth, Love and Courage. The call went out for one who
would become the Avatar, the living incarnation of these abstract virtues
and principles, and once again the Stranger answered this call. This
mightychampion of arms now became a moral hero, as well, and aided by eight
strongCompanions, at last retrieved the Codex of Ultimate Wisdom from
within theGreat Stygian Abyss. It was shortly thereafter that disaster
struck the land.Bringing the Codex to the surface triggered a violent
seismic upheaval thatopened up a vast complex of caverns, the Underworld. Lord
British led an expedition to map the caves, and was captured by the
Shadowlords of Falsehood,Hatred and Cowardice, who had been released from three
shards of Mondain'slost Gem of Immortality. Lord Blackthorn, ruler of the land
in British's absence,was possessed by the Shadowlords, and instituted a vicious
totalitarian government. Once again, the Avatar, aided by the Companions, stood
fast in defense of Britannia, this time as rebels opposing Blackthorn 's new
regime. In time the Shadowlords were destroyed, our Lord British rescued
and Blackthorn exiled.Peace flowed throughout the land for years, until
it was discovered that the Avatar's earlier victory in claiming the Codex
carried its own terrible price. The upheaval following the retrieval of the
Codex destroyed the homeland of the Gargoyles, an ancient and civilized race
living on the far side of the world from Britannia. Unwittingly, the Avatar had
partially fulfilled an ancient prophecy of the Gargoyles, that a false prophet
would one day steal their most holy artifact(the Codex of Ultimate Wisdom),
destroy their homeland and then lead a genocidal war against their race.
The Avatar had already fulfilled two-thirds of this prophecy (by
unwittingly stealing the Codex and triggering the destructive
earthquake), and the Gargoyles were not eager to see it completed. They invaded
Britannia and captured all eight of the sacred shrines of Virtue. The
situation seemed desperate, until the Avatar realized the true reason for
the Gargoyles' hostility. Displaying wisdom as well as martial prowess, the
Avatar resolved the interracial conflict by giving both humans and
Gargoyles access to the Codex. There followed another period of peace,
this one lasting almost two hundred years. In this time the Avatar returned
only once more, in a little-known expedition to prevent a foolhardy wizard from
allowing a powerful demon, the Slasher of Veils, to gain access to our reality.
Unable to destroy the Slasher, the Avatar banished it to the Ethereal Void,
inadvertently setting off a volcanic eruption that destroyed, once and for all,
Britannia's Great Stygian Abyss.
The Guardian, and the story of the Black gate .
In recent years, an extradimensional being who styles himself "the
Guardian" made a stealthy attempt to conquer this world. Of this being we know
little - only that he wields great sorcerous power and is utterly evil. With the
aid of the wizard Batlin, he created an organization known as The Fellowship,
which claimed devotion to the establishment of a new spiritual philosophy. The
higher initiates of The Fellowship were gradually seizing power throughout
the land, spreading corruption, and carrying out the Guardian's hidden
purposes. At the same time, the Guardian created in Britannia three gigantic
blackrock "generators." One of these, the Cube, allowed him to speak to his
followers telepathically; a second, the Tetrahedron, disrupted the magical ether
that powers magic in Britannia and drove magic users such as myself temporarily
insane; and one of these, the Sphere, interrupted the functioning of the
Blackrock is a magical substance, a black gemlike material unworkable by any
known physical means, which is opaque to all magical energy. Meanwhile, the
Guardian's followers were engaged in the construction of the Black Gate, a
magical portal which would give the Guardian physical access to our plane
Indeed, it seemed that the Guardian's plan was well on its way to success. Had
it not been for the Avatar, returning for the first extended period in 200
Britannian years, all might have been lost. But it was the Avatar who first
discovered the sinister true nature of The Fellowship, who disabled the three
blackrock generators, and who, finally, discovered the location of the Black
Gate itself and destroyed it. I must emphasize the extent of the Avatar's
self-sacrifice in this matter, as the Black Gate represented the only
means of return travel to the Avatar's homeland, Earth.
Since that time, we of the realm have been engaged in a massive project
of reconstruction. The Guardian's corruption was widespread, and has left
us with many confounding problems. For example, we must reintegrate
reformed Fellowship members into society, revitalize the economy,
rehabilitate those afflicted by serpent venom and clean up Britannia's
polluted landscape. I can only count it as our good fortune to have the Avatar
here in Britannia to assist us in this, and to guard the realm from any future
Although The Fellowship has officially been disbanded , many of its
members have survive , and there are rumors that it still exists and operates
The Reconstruction is a nationwide effort to repair the social and environ-
mental corruption spread in Britannia by The Fellowship. It is being exe-
cuted at all levels of government, from Lord British and the High
Council of Britannia, to the citizens of each town. On a personal level,
individual citizens are examining their own lives, deciding for themselves how
they were touched by the Guardian's influence, and what came of it.
Some cities, such as New Magincia, were relatively untouched by the
devastation. Others fared far worse. One of the slowest areas of Reconstruction
is Buccaneer's Den - it is as if all the evil ferreted out in other towns
has fled there and made itself at home.
Although it appears a more pleasant place to live than it was a year
ago, it remains a hub of smuggling and piracy. Jhelom is another tumultuous
area, as civic leaders work hard to tame the town's violent spirit and
harness it to make Britannia's dangerous landscape safer.
The town of Cove is a much happier case - Nastassia, woeful guardian of the
Shrine of Compassion, has come out of her seclusion, and is now busy leading the
clean up of nearby Lock Lake, one of the worst hit areas.
In Britain, Mayor Patterson, although a Fellowship member,
remained in office after the Black Gate fell. I must say he has done an
excellent job since that time; Britannia's largest town thrives under his
leadership. Minoc, the town of artisans, is now flourishing, thanks to a
rebalance of trade practices in that town. Mayor Burnside reports that work is
also in progress to reform labor policy in the nearby mines.
Moonglow regrets the temporary loss of one of its famous twin scholars - Nelson
is in Britain for a year, to study the extensive archives of Castle British.
However, Moonglow, home of both the Lycaeum and Brion's observatory,
continues to be a center of scholarly activity. I would encourage aspiring
scholars and sorc e rers alike to study there.
In the small farming community of Paws, the fall of The Fellowship had one
regrettable consequence - the closing of Feridwyn's shelter for the poor.
Though embittered by the loss, Feridwyn and his wife are hard at work raising
the money necessary to reopen the establishment, this time without the policy of
exclusion to non-Fellowship members.
As of this writing, we are still waiting to see the sad isle of Skara Brae
resettled, after the tragic accident that destroyed its entire population.
Thus far, none have proven bold enough to occupy a house on this once-haunted
LEADERS OF BRITANNIA
Although Britannia began as a monarchy, Lord British soon altered his
government to include a constitution, and a Council made up of one repre-
sentative from each of the eight towns of Britannia. To this day, Britannia is
governed largely on a local level, by the mayor of each town - it seems there is
little need for Lord British to take a hand, except in times of crisis. It is
true, however, that the Eight Virtues set the standard for just government in
Britannia. When the highest officials meet, it is at Castle British, and it is
there that Lord British's personal staff resides.
Any citizen of Britannia should know a certain amount
about its most prominent citizens, and I enclose herein a brief list. The
downfall of The Fellowship sent many of our prominent citizens into disgrace,
and led to an extensive political reorganization, and thus it would profit any
Britannian citizen to reacquaint him- or herself with the leading citizens of
the land. Some of these people hold high office, and some wander the land
without specific responsibilities. All, though, have played a prominent
role in Britannia's past, and, in this time of Reconstruction, are responsible
for shaping its future.
Lord British heads the Great Council. Like the Avatar, he is a native of
the world called Earth, and as a result he enjoys a much longer lifespan
than native Britannians. Since the earliest days of Sosaria he has lead his
people, and through his great wisdom gradually rose to become Britannia's
philosopher-king. Lord Draxinusom is still titular head of the Gargoyle
nation, even though the organization of the Gargoyle people has grown more
and more diffuse since they were forced to move to Britannia. All still
respect him as a wise ruler who saw his people through their most
who recently became a Knight of the
Realm, has been a battle-companion to the Avatar
since the days of Exodus. He is as dependable a fight-
er (and drinking companion) as one could wish for.
a native of Paws, has only recently
been acknowledged as one of Britannia's most philan-
thropic citizens. A former Fellowship member, he is
one of the few who actually succeeded in using The
Fellowship's resources for the good of the community,
by establishing a shelter for the destitute.
first achieved fame fighting at the
Stranger's side during the Quest of the Avatar. In
recent years he has become one of Lord British's
most trusted aides, as well as his chief bodyguard.
the bard has been a companion to the Avatar
since the days of Mondain's assault. Like the Avatar
and Lord British, he was born on Earth, although he
has chosen to spend his life here in Britannia.
the tinker is widely known as a mechanical
genius, in addition to the fame of her heroic conduct
in the recent time of crises in Britannia . Her temper,
too, is legendary.
is one of only three women on the
Great Council of Britannia, and is perhaps the most
progressive of Britannia's leaders. She is an outspo-
ken supporter of an equal role for women in
Britannian society, and also serves with distinction in
ameliorating Britannia's environmental crises.
although temporarily in Britain, heads
the Lycaeum at Moonglow, and is widely considered
to be the most accomplished scholar in Britannia,
with the possible exception of the Gargoyle Inforlem.
I, Nystul must perforce, though with humility
and with no small amount of embarrassment, include
my own name in the account, as Court Magician to
is mayor of the town of Britain,
largest city in Britannia. Although Patterson was
elected largely due to his extensive backing from The
Fellowship, he has since proved himself a worthy
and able mayor, and retained his office after The
Fellowship was dissolved.
is a person of remarkable empathic
ability. A resident of Serpent's Hold, she is frequently
sought out for advice on personal matters.
OTHER PLANES OF REALITY
The extraplanar menace of the Guardian has awakened in us a new aware-
ness of the existence of other planes. It has long been known that some
such as the Avatar and Lord British travel back and forth between the worlds of
Earth and Britannia via the Moongates, but it is now evident that there are many
more dimensions to the multiverse than just these two. Clearly, Earth is a plane
more accessible to Britannia than most others, but why this should be, and what
other planes lie nearby is as yet an open question.
It has also been observed that events and even individual people on Earth
and in Britannia resemble one another to a degree not understandable as
It seems that in many respects the two planes exist in parallel to one another,
as if a certain principle of symme try or connectedness operates among planes
that come in contact with one another. Or perhaps in this case causality lies in
the other direction - planes which resemble one another are more likely to come
into contact with one another.
The Eight Virtues represent the highest ideals of Britannian society, as
delimited by Lord British, and one of the major goals of the reconstruction
is their recovery and continued practice. Most Britannians strayed far from
the path of Vi rtue during the time of the Black Gate, and it remains to
be seen whether those coming of age at this time shall be able to recapture the
pursuit of Virtue. It is hoped that the Avatar will lead by example in this
effort, ever fulfilling and re-fulfilling the Quest of the Avatar: to strive for
mental, physical and ethical perfection, and to battle both the evil within
oneself and that outside in the world.
The Eight Virtues are here set forth in short form, with the hope that these
brief explanations convey something of the spirit of each virtue. However,
the most profound understanding of any virtue is not to be found on a
printed page, but must rather be discovered through experience in the
world. The most precise exposition of the nature of virtue conveys little when
compared to the compelling example of someone truly practicing virtue in his or
her dealings with others.
is the pursuit of truthfulness, with respect to oneself and with
respect to other beings.
is the quality of empathy, of recognizing and sharing the feel-
ings of others.
is the courage to uphold virtue, even in the face of a physical or psycho-
is the wisdom that perceives what is right and wrong in human action.
is the placing of the interests of others and the ends of virtue over
one's own well-being.
is the courage to stand for truth regardless of the circumstances.
is a concern for one's own inner being, and awareness of the
love that unites one's own inner being to those around one.
is the recognition of the worthiness of all beings, and the percep-
tion of one's own place among them, regardless of one's own personal accomplish-
ments or mistakes in the world.
The Eight Virtues may be summarized in the form of three great
Truth, Love and Courage.
For those who wish to include travel and adventure in your lives, there are a
number of professions open to you, each focusing on the practice and per-
fection of a given set of skills.
Members of my own profession, the mages, devote
themselves to the manipulation of magical forces to achieve
their ends. Intelligence is the sine qua non of the magic-user,
useful for learning and casting magic spells, and also for devis-
ing original ways to apply a familiar spell to a knotty problem.
Rangers tend to be loners, solitary hero e s
schooled in woodcraft and natural lore. Experts in
stealth and tracking, in the wilds they are deadly foes.
Shepherds are drawn from fiercely inde-
pendent rural peoples. Often forced to fight wild animals
and hostile neighbors to defend their flocks, their simplicity
and humility can be deceptive. They vary widely in their
abilities - some are skilled in folk magic, others in combat,
still others in stealth and woodcraft.
Fighters devote themselves
wholly to all forms of the art of physical com-
bat: unarmed fighting, hand-to-hand weapons
and missile weapons. Their power over others
consists in their unparalleled excellence in the
manipulation and application of physical forces.
A tinker is skilled at all manner
of crafts and mechanical tricks. For survival
they rely on their thorough knowledge of traps
and locks, and their ability to repair damaged
weapons and armor.
Paladins are a specialized group of
fighters, devoted to physical fighting on behalf of the
cause of virtue. The ideological basis of their combat
training lends them a heroic charisma which often wins
others to their cause. Their courage and perseverance in
the face of evil often wins them the victory, where war-
riors of less firm conviction fail.
Bards travel the land, learning of brave and
extraordinary deeds (often committing a few themselves
along the way) and preserving their memory in song. Not
only are they learned and quick-tongued, but anyone who
travels on foot as much as they do should be able to hold
their own in a fight, and perhaps hurl a spell or two when
the need arises.
Because of their devotion to and understanding
of nature, druids are a much-needed profession after
Britannia's time of environmental devastation. Most druids do
not go heavily arm o red, and rely instead on their mastery of
spell-casting and woodcraft to evade combat, or utilize their
surroundings to their own tactical advantage.
Since my recovery from the Guardian's assault, I have been
exploring several new aspects of the magic arts. While most
citizens of Britannia are familiar with the more common, reagent-
based system of magic, I expect that few are acquainted with the sur-
prising implications of my latest research.
The first of these is the existence of runic magic, a form of spellcasting
which originated in the Great Stygian Abyss.
It is suspected that the catastrophic magical events which occasioned
the creation of the Abyss weakened the walls that normally exist among the
many dimensions of reality, and this weakening altered the laws
governing spellcasting that normally hold true for our own real-
In the practice of runic magic, there are no reagents to act
as physical ingredients to the spell, and no magic syllables to be
spoken. The principal component of runic sorcery is the runestone,
a small rock inscribed with one of the twenty-four known
runes. Each of these runes has its own significance, a particu-
lar meaning and application, which when combined with other
runes becomes articulated in a spell, a focused release of magical energy
which accomplishes a particular effect on the world.
The casting of the spell is accomplished through a complicated set of hand
gestures. Even if a runic mage obtains all the correct runestones for a given
spell, the appropriate gestures may yet be beyond his or her skill. It is a
mastery of this element of the casting process that separates the
accomplished mage from the neophyte.
Currently, runic magic is still too weak, too alien to the known laws of
Britannian magic to be effective. If, however, there were to be another
weakening of the interdimensional walls, the knowledge might become useful.
However, if this were to occur it would be impossible to foresee how the rules
of runic magic might alter, which spells would become easier or more difficult
to cast, and whether new spells might become possible.
I have also been investigating an entirely new realm of magic,
one with its own principles and limitations:
the immensely powerful, large-scale magical castings employed by the Guardian
in his assault on Britannia. Although no Britannian wizard possesses anywhere
near the amount of mana necessary to use magic on such a scale, it is possible
to deduce certain principles governing the Guardian's magic from what we
observed of his spellcasting.
We know that in three cases, he created magical blackrock "generators" in
Britannia. Since the Guardian has no direct physical access to Britannia, it
may be surmised that he accomplished this end in part through
intermediaries, who performed some ritual which then allowed him to
exercise his power in our dimension. We may also note that in each of these
cases, his creation took the form of a solid geometric object which con-
tained a copy of itself, identical in form but much smaller in
size. It may therefore be surmised that the Guardian's large - scale
castings have a certain symmetry to them - that the creation of an
object of great size necessitates the creation of a smaller,
similar object within it.
Bats are small flying mammals, almost completely
blind, who navigate by means of high-pitched
squeaking noises - it is not known whether
magic is involved in this process. They are active
only in darkness, and tend to live in deep forest
or underground terrain.
We know of two major varieties of bat.
are small and have a relatively mild disposi-
tion - they will usually only attack if provoked.
Although hard to hit, they can do very little dam-
age to a properly armored opponent, and can be
killed in one blow. They are, of course, more dan-
gerous when found in flocks.
are larger than their cousins,
and can also be identified by their red coloration.
They are vicious predators, and have been
known to stalk and kill human prey. The wise
adventurer will remain alert to surprise attacks
Since the Guardian's corrupting influence touched our land, Britannia has
once again been blighted with all manner of dangerous beings, which men-
ace those who would stray far from our cities and towns, or venture
underground. These entities, some animal, some sentient and even some vegetable
life, live apart from our ordered society, and prey on unwary travelers.
As part of the reconstruction, we hope to civilize the more intelligent of
Britannia's monsters, and eliminate those which prove hopelessly vicious.
In particular, the Avatar's exploration of the Great Stygian Abyss
demonstrated that trolls and goblins are quite reasonable, and are capable of
interacting successfully with civilized beings. What follows is partly the
result of a systematic investigation on my part, but largely a matter of folk
tales and hearsay.
Bloodworms are a revolting menace. They are
large (up to three feet long) carnivorous green
worms, usually found underground but which
occasionally squirm their way up to the surface.
They are mindlessly aggressive, and will attack
anything living, regardless of its size. Although
the bloodworm is easily killed, its bite is extreme-
ly venomous - more than one knight has died of
it, thinking himself invulnerable to attacks by
such lowly vermin.
Our plane of existence is occasionally visited by
beings known as daemon. Very little is known
about them, save that they are malevolent and
highly intelligent. Most often seen is the
imp, a small winged being about the size of an Emp,
possessed of a perverse sense of humor. Few have
seen them up close, as they prefer to circle
overhead, dropping stones and hurling bolts of energy
at their foes. Of the other daemons we know almost
nothing. A colleague of mine who was investigating
old works concerning the summoning of daemons
has of late disappeared, and I fear the worst. His
notes refer to a being called a "destroyer," but the
notes are largely incoherent.
An elemental is a living incarnation of one of the
four elements of nature: earth, wind, fire and
water. Beyond this, I know little - their origins
are unguessable, their motives, inscrutable .
When angered, they are capable of unleashing
great destructive force.
These many-eyed floating spheres are the product
of some perverse wizard 's madness, or perhaps
genius, given that once created the gazers proved
well-adapted to the subterranean environment ,
and have multiplied in profusion. No one knows
what they eat, or whether they are intelligent.
Some have been observed using magic, but we
cannot tell whether this is a learned skill among
them, or some sort of innate ability.
The dead of Britannia do not always lie quietly.
Occasionally, one who has died will not depart in
good order, but instead something called a ghost
will arise in his place. Ghosts are frequently
malevolent, and can sap heat from the human
body, as if drawing it off into some infinite reser-
voir of cold. The pale white ghost
is easily dispersed into air, but the
dire ghost and the reddish aunt have a more tenacious
hold on their unnatural existence.
Away from towns, cities, and domestic settings,
rats grow to the size of cats or even small dogs.
Such rats usually live underground, eating small-
er vermin, scavenging refuse left by other cave-
dwellers, even occasionally cooperating to bring
down larger prey.
The giant tan rat is the most common of these
creatures, but in the lower depths a thing called
the great grey rat has been increasing its numbers.
The knight who reported this to us soon suc-
cumbed to an unidentifiable feverish disease, per-
haps contracted as an infection from the many
bites found on her legs and torso.
In the underworld, the ordinarily tiny spider can
grow to enormous size. The common giant spider is grey,
and is the size of an extremely large dog.
Giant spiders often form mated pairs or larger
groupings, which will protect one another in a
fight. They rear on their hind legs to bite their
opponent. A single giant spider can be a challenge
- one should always flee a larger grouping,
unless one has the protection of numbers.
The wolf spider is smaller, but can inject a powerful poison
with its bite. It is recognizable by its reddish -
brown fur. There are written accounts of a huge,
pale white breed of spider dwelling deep in the
underworld, dubbed the read spider, but I would
tend to dismiss this as hysterical exaggeration.
The Goblin race originated in now-forbidden
experiments among the earliest wizards of our
lands, performed shortly before the period in
which magic was banned outright in Britannia.
Later, in the Age of Darkness, the man-machine
Exodus bred the few remaining goblins into a
substantial army with which he threatened the
land. After the downfall of Exodus, the goblins
fled into seclusion, forming two nations, the Grey
and the Green.
When the Age of the Avatar began, Lord
British granted clemency to all "monstrous" folk
who would pledge to follow the path of Virtue ,
and it was thus that many goblins came to be
accepted as members of our society, although
they continued to keep largely to themselves, and
to dwell in their own enclaves. I would advise
thee, though, to be wary of any goblins you might
meet on the road, far from the protection of a
town, as they are a violent people, and some still
cling to their old practice of banditry. Taken
singly, a goblin is weaker than an average human,
but for this reason they frequently travel in
The headless seem to be the result of a bizarre
and cruel prank on the part of some powerful
human or possibly nature itself. Headless appear
as twisted human bodies, lacking any sort of head
or neck. It is not known how they feed, or how
they sense the world around them. However,
they do have some means of locating an oppo-
nent, and once they know a human is near they
will almost always fight to the death. They are a
vicious abomination, to be pitied and avoided.
Occasionally, an extremely old and powerful wiz-
ard will choose not to suffer a natural death, but
instead become a liche. In such cases, their bod-
ies die, but their minds live on and animate the
rotting corpse. Liches are in nearly all cases soli-
tary, most being scholars who carry out magical
research in secret. Anyone capable of becoming a
liche must already be highly intelligent and a
master of arcane knowledge. In most cases, a
liche is also completely insane.
Lurkers are usually seen floating just beneath the
surface of a secluded lake or subterranean pool.
They rest with their eyes and a few tentacles pok-
ing just above the surface, alert for predators or
prey. In most cases, lurkers will not bother any-
one who does not actually enter the water,
although they may track a person's position, and
follow along behind him. They present a greater
danger in the water, however, as they are well-
adapted to water-borne combat, and their body-
mass alone is enough to bar a swimmer's way in a
narrow strait. As lurkers sink out of sight when
killed, it is unclear whether they breath air or
water, or what shape their lower body takes.
These airborne primates are fast and tough, with
a vicious disposition. This hybrid species thrives
both below ground and above, where they dwell
in rocky and mountainous areas. Apparently the
concept of a fair fight is foreign to them, and they
prefer to bombard their enemy from above, or
swoop in and score a hit, then fly off before their
opponent can retaliate. Mongbats are singlehand-
edly responsible for the fact that the best archers
in Britannia dwell near the Serpent Spine moun-
The legends relate that long ago, an enchanted
sentient forest sank underground in a great cata-
clysm, and there the trees that composed it
mutated into something that could survive in the
underworld. Reapers appear as ambulatory trees,
broken and bare of leaves. Their thick limbs can
deliver blows of enormous power, and for all its
flexibility their wood is as resistant as any oak or
pine. There are a few unconfirmed reports of
magic use among the reapers.
The rotworm, cousin to the bloodworm, feeds on
decaying organic matter, and thus has no short-
age of food in the underworld. These worms will
always attack when they sense flesh nearby, but
a re easily crushed to death with a well-aimed
kick. The only danger lies in being overwhelmed
by a large number of rotworms clustered around
No one knows what makes a human skeleton rise
and walk on its own, intent on destroying the liv-
ing. Some claim to have mastered the art of ani-
mating and controlling skeletons, but I have yet
to see proof of this. Others theorize that skele-
tons are not human bones at all, but emerge from
the rock itself in human form.
Slugs are little to be feared, only avoided. They
writhe mindlessly and senselessly from place to
place, feeding on whatever they encounter.
Disgustingly enough, the flesh slug is a large
amorphous blob of gelatin, the color of pale pink
human flesh. The greenish acidslugs are slightly
more dangerous, as they are capable of spitting
acid a considerable distance.
Long hunted and feared as monsters, these giants
have only recently been recognized as sentient
and, in their own way, civilized. They speak the
human tongue and band together in loose tribes.
However, there are still many, many trolls that
simply wander the landscape preying on smaller,
more vulnerable travelers, particularly the rarely
sighted great Troll. Trolls are generally agreed to
be the strongest species to walk on two legs.
Little understood by humans, wisps appear to be beings of pure energy,
impervious to any physical weapon. They seem to have sources of knowl-
edge that lie beyond our own reality.
I must mention here that the creatures listed above are only those known to fre-
quent Britannia's air, soil and waters. It is not unheard of for monsters from
other worlds to wander into our own and menace the population, and thus one
should at all times be prepared to encounter unknown foes, with unknown
In conclusion, I am not meant to close this document on such a
dire note! It is my hope that the information contained in this work shall
inspirere readers to set forth with hope and confidence along the path ways of
Britannia. Our nation, so recently devastated by the Guardian's corruption,
now stands ready to be reclaimed and reshaped by the newest generation of
For those who will accept this challenge, there exist countless
areas for exploration. The libraries of Castle British and the Lycaeum stand
open for those who would read ; the unexplore fields, mountains and seas of
Britannia lie waiting to be discovered and investigated by those who would
travel them. And for those few who would take the risk, the ancient uncharted
caverns and waterways beneath Britannia offer both danger and fabulous
rewards. I urge you, reader, be less daunted by the risks involved , and more
inspired by lands yet unseen, strange, beautiful and , yes, terrible beings
and artifacts yet to be found . Be wary of the angers, but ever mindful of what
may be attained by the boldest and most virtuous among you. May thy path be ever
smooth, and thy steps never falter.
in service to Lord British .