Not much is known about this wandering race of plant people. They can be found in any deep forest, always on the move in the warmer months, taking root in the winter as they raise their children through the colder months. No one is more closely tied to the heartbeat of the world, and rumors speak tales of hidden magics and spirits who talk only to these children of the forest.
Interested in playing this ancestry? Send a photo of your costuming and makeup to a marshal here
Not much is known about this wandering ancestry of plant people. They can be found in any deep forest, always on the move in the warmer months, taking root in the winter as they raise their children through the colder months. No one is more closely tied to the heartbeat of the world, and rumors speak tales of hidden magics and spirits who talk only to these children of the forest.
Costuming & Makeup
Sylvani commonly wear clothing that resembles the natural environment. As a nomadic people, they prefer to keep their possessions on them whenever possible. Sylvani typically refrain from wearing hats or similar head coverage.
Hair: Hair must resemble leaves, flowers, bark, or some similar vegetation. This can be accomplished by using various wigs, headbands, or by coloring your hair.
Skin: Sylvani makeup should represent tree bark or plant-like skin using a combination of brown, green, gray, or black on all exposed skin. No single color may cover more than 2/3 of the total face coverage in order to differentiate between other makeup ancestries. The required variation in color is meant to represent bark or plant coverage or other striations.
If you are planning to play a special type of Sylvani - for example one inspired by a plant that has unusual colorations which might be mistaken for something else - your makeup and costuming must be approved by Game Management or Marshal. Fill out a form here
May have Animal Empathy and Speak with Animals ability. (Free)
Half cost for Herbal Lore.
Half cost for Healing Arts.
Half cost for First Aid.
May purchase Resist Metabolic (5 Build, for every 5 levels).
May begin play with Druidic specialization.
Takes Double Damage from Fire.
May not learn Necromancy Earth specialization.
In the late fall, Sylvani begin the practice of ‘Rooting’. Individuals or Kindreds will remain in a small region or territory for the remainder of the winter season. Sylvani do not physically take root in this time for the entire duration of the season, but this is the only time of year they do not travel. In the spring, when the warmth of the season encourages them to stretch their legs, they travel again once more.
Legends & Folklore
Rite of Birth:
Few traditions are native to the Sylvani race as a whole; most traditions are passed through the various nomadic groups. However, the Rite of Birth is one that is shared by all. During the child’s birth from its pod, all family are present, serving as witness for the event, though it is not uncommon for non-family members to be present as well. Once born, the child is named, typically by the parents, though that honor may be granted to a respected individual (usually in advance, and consultation of the parents in regards to the name is acknowledged as ‘good manners’). Once named, all then attend a celebration – not only of the child but of the continuation of life as well. Sylvani legends speak of their creation during one of the ancient Cataclysms by Amroth itself, as a response to the destruction of the planes and the growth of Necromancy. The Sylvani see themselves as the caretakers of the Prime itself. Some races, such as the Amrothian Dwarves or the Sampan Elves, say that the Sylvani are immune to Fate; that the young race has no role to play in the future of Amroth. Certainly, with the coming of the Oasis, they are discovering that druidic magic suits their nature well. Sylvani folklore mentions legendary figures such as Old Man Willow, the legendary warrior known as Burl, and the violent and murderous Jobokko Kindred.
The Sylvani are a nomadic people who rarely settle. They refer to themselves as the People of the Long Walk. They wander across most of the face of Amroth, largely ignoring physical and political boundaries in extended family groups they call Kindred. A Kindred consists of as few as ten or as many as a hundred individuals of all ages led by a council of elders or a single Sylvani elder. The type of leadership structure varies, but is almost always oligarchical in nature. Elders are typically knowledgeable in several arts or skills - typically Earth magic, survival and area knowledge, and the various crafts that Sylvani need to know to survive.
No Sylvani will own more than they can carry. What good are possessions when the entirety of Amroth keeps you alive? Etiquette between Sylvani is as simple as the rest of their culture. When Sylvani meet, the younger addresses the elder first, honoring the other’s knowledge and wisdom. At a formal gathering, the elders of each Kindred typically bless those present, typically invoking the forces of life and nature to grant wisdom, knowledge or other beneficial boons to those present.
Disrespect of elders is frowned upon, and harm upon a life-bearing pregnant Sylvani or of a child is one of the few taboos that Sylvani have. As a race, all Sylvani are able to host a birthing pod to bear offspring. Due to their passive nature, and their skill at herbal arts and affinity for Earth magic, Sylvani are tolerated in many areas where members of other races might be shunned. They do not recognize any authority other then the elders of their own Kindred, but they also avoid cities and populated areas. Many people of Amroth appreciate the healing a Sylvani Kindred can provide, and trade local goods for such services.
Names amongst the Sylvani are usually simple in nature, can reference ‘natural’ things, and usually pertain to the individual; rarely does an individual have a surname or otherwise, unless there are several individuals sharing that name. Sylvani typically keep the same name during a lifetime, but it can sometimes happen that an individual changes their name, usually due to some radical event. In cases such as this, the individual is known by both names briefly. Kindred names vary. They may represent the bloodline of the Kindreds or may represent the unifying theme of the established Kindred.
Societal issues amongst the Sylvani are few and far between. However, on the rare occasion that a Sylvani has willfully injured or harmed another Sylvani (directly or otherwise), others of that nomadic group not directly affected gather and discuss the issue. Should they decide that the offender merits punishment, they declare the offender ‘outcast’ for a time. During that time, the offender does not exist to the Sylvani and is completely shunned, forbidden from participation in with other Sylvani. This is referred to as a ‘Shunning’. Once the period has passed, the offender may return and ask to rejoin; only in the rarest of cases is this denied. Often seen negatively and taken very seriously, when two or more Sylvani Kindreds go to war or have a dispute the violence is referred to as a Burning.