Friday, October 1, 2010

Fauna: Nikac Anemones

Nikac are 1-4 meter tall, non-aquatic anemones that live among the deeper parts of the canyonlands of Zeth. While technically an animal, they appear as large, plant-like clusters of needles, which are nearly the height of the animal's trunk. They are affixed to the ground using a system of short root-like feet. This enables them to move--albeit at an incredibly slow pace over a long period of time--at basically the same rate that a vine might grow in a tropical rainforest.

Needle Attack 

Nikac are able to detect neurotransmitters in roaming prey. They can target and fire their long needles up to 5 meters away. Once the nikac has fed, a signal is sent from the main body and the needle disintegrates. Needles appear in a variety of bluish-grey varieties with pink or yellow tips when fresh and decompose into a whitish bone color when deactivated.

Nikac Feeding Habits

The sharp ends of the needles excrete a chemical-based sedative and an electro shock (depending on the variety, via the pinkish or yellowish tip) that allows it to stun/incapacitate its prey. The nikac can fire the needles up to 10 meters away. The animal then feeds off of the prey's electro-chemical energy by transmitting it psionically to it's trunk. The psionic connection is made using a gland at the base of the now detached needle. The "food" can then be used to regrow limbs, new body parts such as needles, or increase its overall body size, depending on the target. A nikac will feed on anything it senses can provide it with nourishment.

Nikac Relationship to Muscolites

Upon reaching puberty, muscolites must grapple with the beasts in order to retrieve a fresh needle they will fashion into a javelin for hunting and defense (+1 to hit a target up to 100 meters for anyone trained in javelin hurling). Muscolites must rely on their training and a single paring knife with which to make a clean cut. Offworlders would do well to be better equipped.

For Off-worlders

Nikac needles are a rare and precious find indeed, scoring high prices on black markets. Since nobody wants to go to Zeth to get them, they are highly prized by collectors and top-notch bounty hunters/soldiers of fortune. A word to the wary, have a muscolite demonstrate it's use before making off with one (assuming you procured one yourself under muscolite supervision). Failure to use the needle properly has a good chance of causing a mishap/injury/death. A single round of accident prevention training should prevent any problems.

Nikac Needle Misfortune Table (1d10)

  • (1) Will not respond to psionic commands and no bonus when thrown (rendered inert)
  • (2-3) Psionic rejection of new owner causes intense migraines for 1d4 rounds, rendered unusable by anyone for same duration
  • (4-5) Energy drain as electrical, physical (-HP, PHY, STR, or CON, your choice) 1d8+1
  • (6-7) Energy drain as electrical, physical (-HP, PHY, STR, or CON, your choice) and psionic (INT or PER) 2d6
  • (8-9)Discharge causing electrical (HP) and psionic (PER or INT) damage (2d6)
  • (10) Explodes causing electrical (HP) and psionic (PER or INT) damage (4d6+2)
These stats can also be used to determine damage when wielded by a trained user against an enemy target.

FREQUENCY: Uncommon; forests are typically hidden in canyon bottoms
NO. APPEARING: Forests of 60 or more
HIT DICE: 1d8+1
DAMAGE/ATTACK: Projectile needle (range 10 meters) with chemical sedative combined with electroshock - 3d4; 1 successful attack, victim must roll save vs. stun; 3 successful attacks, victim must roll save or fall unconscious for 1d8 rounds; feeds psionically off stuck victims also suffer energy drain (1d8+1)
SPECIAL ABILITIES/SKILLS: Regeneration at 1d8 rounds; detect other nikac through psionic link for colony and migratory purposes
PSIONIC ABILITY: Nikac communicate basic information about prey location, climate, and migratory direction through a psionic connection. Maximum range is unknown.

Written generically for D&D and X-plorers.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Ancient Tech: Psi Sled (Part 2)

This is the final part in a 2-part series on the Psi-Sled

How does it work?

A single pilot controls the psi-sled through brainwaves transmitted through the plasmatic energy field inside the cockpit. The field doesn’t appear to harm the pilot—at first—but can become charged and violent if the vehicle doesn’t seem to “want” her or him to perform a certain maneuver or defensive function.

Amulet of Aminora

The craft can be piloted with ease and without side effects if the pilot is wearing the Amulet of Aminora, a medallion made of the same burnished metal as the Psi-sled. A pilot need only think a command and the vehicle will respond. The amulet is circular with a pair of wings folded down over a turquoise “eye” and is covered with intricate alien glyphs on the back.

The amulet is the key to piloting the psi-sled without harm to the driver and also grants the user all of the following additional abilities and effects while in possession of the amulet.
  • Pilot encounters no mishaps or side effects when commanding craft
  • Pilot enjoys +2 bonus on psyche (or similar) rolls while wearing amulet
  • Pilot wearing amulet while inside craft becomes coated in a thin, slippery coat of metallic residue that superconducts mental commands, coating disappears completely when not occupying craft if wearer desires (see #1 below for properties of this residue when in present)
  • When occupied with pilot wearing amulet, the shifting iridescent colors of the craft’s outer skin coalesces into “tattoos” resembling ancient symbols and glyphs. The colors deepen as if to “solidify” on the skin of the sled and provides +2 protection as armor against all attacks (physical, psionic, etc.); residue becomes silvery if worn outside of craft and wearer retains +2 protection bonus
Following abilities are granted per class-level gained, selection is at GM's discretion or 1d6:
  1. If pilot and craft are separated, the wearer may call the sled to her/his present location
  2. With effort, wearer can remotely control sled when unoccupied
  3. True sight: wearer is less susceptible to illusions with +2 bonus
  4. Booming voice: wearer’s voice is amplified as a public address system when occupying craft when she/he intends to be heard, those hearing voice roll save on morale to keep from fleeing
  5. Force field: wearer can create a personal plasmatic force field up to 5 meters in diameter, sustained for 1d6 rounds, protection provides AC 14 + any intelligence bonuses the pilot may already have
  6. Sleeping sentinel: wearer can slip into suspended animation indefinitely, during this time HP is frozen at current number, all stats drop to zero, and PC is rendered both unplayable and uncommunicative (this includes astrally) until revived. Sleep protects wearer from harm and also from having amulet removed. Back compartment of the sled acts as a sarcophagus for sleeper. Can only be awoken with the blessing of a deity of Benu which must be gained by the pilot’s companions (assuming she/he still had any) or an outside benefactor

GM Notes:

This is a powerful item, but I’m hoping it will be fun for PCs to play with/incur wanton destruction.


  • Only one pilot may wear the amulet at a time
  • Amulet must be given, attempts to take it by force will result in a plasmatic blast (3d6 damage and save vs. stun/paralysis)
  • Amulet must be given tribute with a burnt offering before it will accept a new host
  • After 3 days of use, it's energy level will be depleted. To recharge the vehicle, it must be parked over a ley line or over a water aquifer overnight and it will absorb the necessary psionic energy to run at full power. The fact that the psi-sled runs on pure psionic energies is not well known. If starved, it may begin to sap psionic (Presence/PRE or Intelligence/INT) energy at -1 per day from anyone not its master.


Saturday, September 25, 2010

Ancient Tech: Psi Sled (Part 1)


Ancient technology is unpredictable and therefore, dangerous. Experienced explorers should use caution when handling. Following are all known facts about the artifact in question, GMs should feel free to feed information to players on a need to know basis.

What is it?

An ancient curiosity discovered in the tombs of the great desert kings beneath the sandy blue salt flats of Benu.

What does it look like?

The sled features an elongated, sculpted trapezoidal shape, topped with a transparent canopy, appearing similar to clear glass to those outside craft. The craft appears to have fluted fins (“wings”) on the opposite end. The front slopes of the fuselage curve out and terminate into a long, flat base with flared edges, similar to skis.

The exterior skin appears to be a burnished brass-like metal, which can include blotches of color depending on lighting conditions giving a Mother of Pearl effect or similar to shifting iridescent hues in a pool of petroleum fuel. Coloring seems to shift through all parts of the spectrum—from sparkling golds and oranges, to shimmering pinks and violets, and even sometimes turquoises ringed with deep blues.

The one-person cockpit is a transparent sphere perched directly atop the front of the craft. From the outside, a single blocky seat can be seen and while piloted the sphere glows and crackles with pink/blue plasmatic energy. The streams of plasma don’t seem to directly injure the pilot while operating normally. There are no apparent controls visible.

The pilot enters the cockpit by tapping on the glass three or more times (basically tapping in rapid succession). The front of the craft develops “ridges” like stairs leading up to the piloting deck, while the transparent canopy becomes vaporous to allow the pilot entry. The sphere re-solidifies upon the pilot taking her/his seat.

What can it do?

The sled is a one-person vehicle that can travel at incredible speeds as it hovers up to a meter off of flat ground. Over rougher terrain, the vehicle can fly as any other hover-car or similar vehicle. It’s been known to disappear—that is to blink in and out of sight, which suggests some dimensional travel capabilities. It also appears to exhibit extremely high durability. Some might say nearly indestructible, but it’s rarely around long enough to test this hypothesis.


The vehicle has no obvious, external weaponry, but it does exhibit defensive capabilities:


A loud, throbbing hum that forces all living creatures in a 50 meter diameter to flee, unless they make a save or become incapacitated. All creatures are immediately forced outside this perimeter and make a second save roll to determine whether they put an additional 50 meters between them and the 50 foot perimeter. During this time all actions other than fleeing are prohibited.

Mind Milking

All targets within a 50 meter cone are sapped of brain waves for 2d6 rounds, resulting in a penalty of -4 on any type of Intelligence, Wisdom, or Psyche checks (or any other “mind” related checks) for that period. Any target suffering three or more of these attacks in a single day suffers a permanent -1 deduction from one of those scores (PC’s choice).

Plasmatic Blast

Once per day a powerful, plasmatic energy blast can be fired from the cockpit sphere. Damage is mainly concussive and electrical (3d6) with a range of 70 meters. Unknowing to pilot, she/he is immediately rendered unconscious for 1d6 rounds upon firing.

Speed and Movement

Psi-sled can accelerate to incredible speeds which haven’t been measured. For in-game purposes it travels anywhere from 0 up to 1,200 kilometers per hour, but can easily reach speeds around Mach 5 through Earth-like, high-altitude atmosphere.


The craft can rotate, pitch, yaw, and roll in all directions—basically behave like a UFO. The sled can maneuver with little effort and no inertial effects on the pilot are felt. How it’s able to accomplish this feat without serious injury falling to the pilot is unknown.


It’s undetermined if the sled possesses sentience—and thereby intelligence—of any kind. It does not speak, but it behaves erratically with most pilots, which suggests an “unwillingness” to be piloted.

What can it do to YOU?

The Psi-sled can prove as dangerous to its user as it does to anyone unlucky enough to square off against it. All pilots who enter the canopy suffer the following effects:

Side Effects

(1d8 for every turn pilot occupies cockpit):
  1. Pilot develops strong metallic taste in mouth, 1d4 rounds later hands up to elbows become coated in patchy metallic coating, become magnetized, neither the condition nor the effects subside
  2. Pilot suffers migraines outside of craft after more than 4 rounds piloting, prompting her/him to want to re-board immediately to alleviate pain
  3. Nervousness and -1 on Will checks (or similar) outside of craft after 4 or more rounds piloting
  4. Lack of appetite (no food consumed after piloting)
  5. Insomnia (no HP healed overnight after piloting)
  6. Pilot becomes delusional: roll save vs. Will or similar save; failure results in pilot believing he/she is godlike and forsakes all allies and goals in order to continue flying craft
  7. Blurry vision -2 to sight checks, outside of craft after 4 or more rounds piloting
  8. Slurred speech (negate all bluff, negotiation, or similar skills for 1d6 rounds)

Piloting Mishap

(1d8 on turns executing a piloting maneuver other than straight ahead):
  1. Loud, deep siren sounds, roll save vs. paralysis
  2. Erratic behavior: craft will either move in unintended direction (randomly rolled on 1d12/hands on a clock), makes wild turns, or shakes and shimmies uncontrollably
  3. Cockpit goes dark: a cloudy tint coats the glass, nothing can be seen or sensed outside cockpit
  4. Will not respond to commands during current round
  5. Powerful and intrusive psionic connection causes pilot to soil self
  6. Control sphere (where pilot sits) experiences a sudden backbuild in electro-magnetic energy, essentially shocking pilot with 2d6 damage
  7. Unintended acceleration/no brakes (pick one, they’re both bad and they both end with the craft stopping abruptly, turning cockpit glass to vapor, and letting occupant fly forward to his/her death
  8. Pilot suffers stroke; Failing constitution (or similar) check, pilot takes 3d6 damage

How does it work?

Stay tuned for Part 2 and the secret to mastering the psi-sled!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Cryptotherium: Keeping Place of Secrets

The Bando know that the things they find in the wastes of Benu are from ancient and powerful civilizations that fell long before they set foot across the salt flats. Those finds that hum and glow with unknown energies are transported to the Cryptotherium, a massive museum and laboratory in the capitol city.

Here the wisest and most learned among the Bando try to uncover the secrets of the past. More often than not, the artifacts stored here are relegated to storage and deemed undecipherable.

Physical Structure, Azure and Ancient

The Cryptotherium is a 20-story tall tower with an observatory dome on top. The entire building is covered in ancient glyphs, scrawled on thousands of pieces of ornate stonework that have been scavenged and fastened together to create this monumental edifice and shrine of the past.

The inner layout of the building is honeycomb of passages and skyways connecting hundreds of vaults and labs. Many dangerous objects are housed here so the walls are thick and seemingly impenetrable. The building's original blue glaze, while cracked and faded, still quite captivating, while trimmed with a precious platinum-colored metal that gleams brightly in direct midday starlight.

The observatory dome crowns the top of the building with colorful and strange stained glasses that at one time filtered out direct sunlight so observations could be made during the day. In the waning light of Benu's star, the windows have taken on new properties--shifting auras and colored shapes of light in mid-air--which Bando astronomers are at a loss to explain.

There are three entrances to the Cryptotherium, one main ramp that leads to a hall of vaults and two skyway bridges 10 stories from the ground that lead from the adjacent buildings. These are ramshackle bridges covered with deep blue canvas tenting. Similar coverings dot the building over breaches or fallen walls where passages are now vulnerable, as the building has been in general disrepair for the last millennia. 

Powerful Secrets Means Tight Security

The building is heavily guarded--not against threats from within (the punishment in Bando society is to be abandoned beyond the Indigo Gates of the city, a fate of certain death) but from without. Seekers from other worlds, competitor races on Benu, and other oddness have besieged the tower in the past.

The Bando forbid all outsiders from entering and installed an permanent garrison of 300 Bando sentinels called Mazhji to watch over their precious treasures. Armed with weapons familiar and ancient, these Mazhji will lay down their lives to keep intruders from making off with any secrets of The Kings.

While the tower appears to have it's weak points, the Bando's resolve to protect the Cryptotherium is boundless. An outsider looking to get in should consider that there are better ways to die.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Zeth, Benuvian Moon

Image: Blue Cloud Planet 2.0 by Fragile-stock
Zeth is a windswept moon that orbits Benu. It was formed out of the detritus from it's larger host planet and later became fortified with heavy metals from meteors. Eons later the planet would be mined for its rich ore complement to the point of being riddled with deep shafts and sinkholes.

The Winds of Zeth

When Benu and Zeth had grown old and the solar winds stirred up the climate of both bodies, Zeth's gale-force gusts began to pulverize what was left. With so much material in the air, lifeforms on the surface had little chance of survival. What did remain retreated to the sinkholes, canyons, and subterranean caverns or under the pillowed dunes.

Life On-Planet

Zeth's atmosphere is filled with particulate (dust, etc.) and air-breathing lifeforms native to the world have evolved special lungs lined with filters to extrude dangerous matter. (visitors require artificial means to breath.) The winds also carve anything and everything, breaking solid objects down with the passage of time, adding all matter to the winds' mighty rending will. Special precautions must be taken in order to venture out into the wilderness by natives and visitors alike.

Fauna on the planet is especially hardy and distempered. The Nikac is a native species to Zeth.

Cultural Impact

Zeth is named for the daughter of the great creators Oduz and Erul. In Benuvian lore, she was the first sired princess and Queen of Secrets. During the high season, when the moon is full, her reflection is said to reveal all betrayers. The moonlight from Zeth bathes Benu in silver twillight during these periods--during day and night--making the ambient sky much brighter than ususual. Runes written while Zeth is full can only be read on other full moons--regardless of the method of rendering.


When Zeth and Benu are in alignment with their parent star, the winds die down on the surface and great celebrations occur across the orb. The entire surface of the moon appears transparent--as a ghost--during an eclipse. Seers, astralmongers and cosmotographers have been known to peer into the eclipse, and auto-scribe starmaps, calendars, and witness other strange visions. Ships looking to land on Zeth during these times find the moon has quite simply disappeared.


  • Some say that Zeth was once the shipyard that built the great tetratic "colony" ships (a cross between a warship and planetary seed engine) and the discus-shaped escort fleets. The planet's rich iron core is mixed with other unknown metals made it a favorite source for magical weapons, shields, and starship hulls.
  • Either due to it's geologic makeup or for other unknown reasons, the moon is a bright source of psionic energy, which has affected everything from sentient culture development to the lifeforms in residence.
  •  Zeth still has great cities, buried beneath the dunes and embedded inside abandoned mines.
  •  A great war was once fought between Zethian slaves and their Benuvian masters. While the rebellion was eventually put down by Benu, several space vessels, crafted in secret, made it off-moon. It's rumored that their descendants began their own empires elsewhere and are among many reasons why Benu has fallen from its former glory.


Monday, June 7, 2010

Nomadic tribesmen: The Bando


(A new race for X-plorers RPG)

Requirements: PER 10, PHY 9, INT 10
Prime Requisite: PER and PHY
Hit Dice: Add +1 for a hardy, rigorously physical lifestyle
Max Level: None


Benu has been home to many races over the eons. At several points in the planet's history, different humanoid species existed at the same time and though the diversity and number are greatly reduced, a few races still persist. Only one though is humanoid. The Bando are a race of human nomads that travel in giant caravans across the deserts, badlands, and steppes of Benu and are the progeny of whatever humans previously lived there. The bando live in hostile conditions but have met their genetic potential for longevity which is around 270 years old. The bando language is a complex system of whistles, tweets, and throaty calls that presents an intentional barrier for would be adversaries and outsiders.


The Bando raise quarra as pack animals and for other purposes. While they used to treat them as livestock they now know better of it. They raise a variety of other domesticated animals have a talent for husbandry. They are talented scavengers, traders, and craftsmen (basically making things they find "useful"). While finding things comes naturally to them, occasionally certain finds present themselves to be ancient, mysterious, and possibly dangerous. These items are held in high regard and taken to the the Cryptotherium for further study.

They also make excellent guides and wayfinders for travelers who find themselves on Benu (usually stuck there for one reason or another). Occasionally an offworlder may come to Benu looking for a Bando Protector for hire, as they are highly regarded warriors and body guards. Protectors swear an oath to fight to the death to defend their masters, but generally very few can be persuaded to leave Benu, let alone to look after someone else.

For the most part though, the Bando live off whatever they can find as far as food, shelter, and tools/weapons to fight off the marauding races and dangerous fauna that still exist on the planet. It's important to note that the Bando are not the dominant species on Benu and they travel largely to avoid becoming sitting targets.


The Bando obscure their physical appearance in mainly blue colored cloaks, capes, veils, and the like over grey or tan colored wrappings to protect against the desert sands. It's unknown what their true likeness are, but though they appear to be humanoid. They are comparable to other human races in size and frame, though they are nearly all strong and lean, having grown accustomed to the harsh climes and difficult lifestyle on Benu.

Special Abilities/Bonuses

The Bando gain a +1d4 + level on searching, scouting, or hiding as they've developed keen eyes (even in the dim Benu daylight) for finding artifacts, fossils, etc. and detecting predators. Edged weapons are hard to come by, but the Bando have made due with a variety of handcrafted spear, staff, and club weapons with barbed or hooked implements. In addition bando have mastered several types of ranged implements (slings, javelins, and nets) and gain a +1 per level in their use.

The Bando also seem to retain a natural ability to "activate" or make use of found objects regardless of whether they know how to use them or not. As a result they often consider special finds to be "magical" or imbued with the "Song of the Kings," which should translate to a +1-per-level psionics bonus. Ability without knowledge is dangerous however and there's a 1d8 chance of mishap or accident occurring.


There are many mysteries about the Bando, but the most common question about them is often their hidden faces. Travelers often gossip that they were once very attractive in appearance, which is thought to be a genetic trait handed down by their supposed forefathers, the long extinct Kings of Benu. It's rumored that many millennia ago they likely were more than 12 feet tall, and had angelic faces that would put the meanest disposition at ease with their sublime grace. Legend says the Kings, having been obsessed with human dominance over everything, apparently imbued their lines with physical perfection. A superior standard, that offworlders claim has been slowly ground away by the passage of time into a hard-skinned, cragged, and gnarled forms --a shadow of their former race.

When distressed, it's said that a Bando tribe member can call her or his bonded quarra to their side simply by thinking it.

Bando widows hold vigil for several days praying for a colossal sandstorm. When one finally appears they are said wander into them, cooing and whistling, lamenting their lost loved ones--and then disappear forever.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Fauna: Quarra (pack animal)

The quarra is a smallish, fleet-footed, hoofed animal that roams the rocky outcroppings and foothills of Benu's steppe regions. The beasts resemble the pony-sized hyracodon of prehistoric Earth (horse-like in appearance, but actually an ancestor of the modern rhino). Quarra hold much in common with their Earth counterparts, though the males sport a bony skull-plate studded with short, broad spikes above the eyes and down the snout.

Use as domesticated animals

Several nomadic tribes have domesticated the animal, and use it's surefooted climbing abilities and speed over open plains to their advantage. Quarra are often used as pack animals for small to medium-sized loads that accommodate their lighter frame, but they excel at navigating rough terrain so they often make for ideal pack animals.

Long ago, quarra were hunted to near extinction (prized for their colorful coats) until one tribe, the Bando, discovered their innate intelligence. Unlike other pack species, quarra exhibit a higher degree of intelligence and can understand both spoken and gestural commands by their masters. They remain loyal to their death or the demise of those they serve, upon which the pact that bonds both is dissolved and the companion is free to join the wild herds.
Courtesy Wikipedia
Male quarra are slightly larger than females and appear in a variety of brown, grey, red, and purplish tones. They mate twice yearly and face off to claim dominance over suitors and breeding priority in the herd. Females are known to birth twins often, which is thought to be a natural defense of the species who are the preferred prey of Benu's mega-sized strigiforme predators.

A single quarra is matched to a nomadic adolescent upon entering puberty as part of a rite of passage ceremony. The young adults are charged with caring for their companions and will use them to build their  livestock herd. Quarra will live nearly as long as their masters if cared for properly and predators are kept at bay. Quarra also possess some unusual abilities (see below).


NO. APPEARING: Herds (8-40); Always paired with nomad at puberty (about 12 years or older)
MOVE: 15 on open plain
HIT DICE: 2d8+2
DAMAGE/ATTACK: 2d6+1 ramming
SPECIAL ABILITIES/SKILLS: Low light/dark vision, scent, when 6 or more adult quarra are present they provide their masters with an additional protection (not known if this is magic, but should be treated as such) against fear/intimidation/morale-based attacks (+2 on any saves)
SPECIAL DEFENSES: Studded/bony skull-plate
ALIGNMENT: Neutral in wild/good if domesticated by good aligned nomads (will remain good if released)
Quarra are immune to illusions produced by living beings


125 lbs (light load)
126-275 (medium load)
276-330 (heavy)
A quarra can drag 1,275 pounds for 1d6 rounds before getting tired

Friday, May 21, 2010

Geologic Characteristics

Benu has, for most of it's habitable existence, been a temperate world that was once flush with life. Now, it's barren, rocky skin is showing the scars of billions of years. There are no jungles here, but there are a few pockets of shrubland steppes and a few plains, these being the least arid regions.

The rest is desert, stone, salt flats and dried seas, sinkholes, canyons (both natural and man-made), and similar features.

Much of the rock has been mined through and shows the mark of machine and hand pick alike.
Bony, protruding remains whether they be rusted scaffolding or animal fossils are not difficult to find. Potable water sources however, are another story.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Lost Planet of the Ancients

 Daylight, approaching midmorning

Orbiting a dying sun near the galactic eye is a world long forgotten to the earliest settlers of space. The stars glow faintly until midday, chanting the impending doom of the blue deserts and dust blown salt flats below. The inhabitants are obliquely aware of their galactic lineage--they are the root world to all others. They are the forgotten children of the precursors...the ancients.

Millions of years long past, an endless procession of humanoids (some barbaric, some civilized) crawled across the land, scarred it with war, fought to recover, and then finally left it to erode for all time. Now only a single race of humans remains to eke out a living amongst the ruins. They know little about the true nature of the others that have come before them or the cataclysms that winked them into oblivion.

Most of the remaining inhabitants are nomadic tribes scavenging the wastes and digging into the barren soil hoping to find something to eat, something useful, or something "magical" left behind by a precursor they can sell or trade--or if it comes to it--something they can use for protection against the things-that-go-bump in the endless twilight.

This is Benu.