Armistice was a frigid planet in the crystal sphere of Winterspace, which played a significant role in both the First and Second Unhuman Wars. Because of its snow-covered surface, it was also known as the Ice World.
From wildspace, Armistice looked like a white ball with white streaks, the result of continuous snow and ice cover and clouds. The planet had a radius of 15,000 miles (24,000 kilometers) and was nearly perfectly spherical.
The planet was tilted on its axis, giving it seasons, and its day–night revolution was once every 60 hours. The gravity on the surface of Armistice was three times stronger than that of Toril or Oerth.
Armistice had three large moons, each a large size E world. These were named Vesta, Lacerne, and Vardig. Each was in a tight orbit about their planet. From the surface of Armistice, the moons looked like massive, crater-covered disks. One of the moons, Vesta, appeared lavender in color, another amber, and the third white tinged with green. In combination, they reflected multicolored moonlight off the restless waves or the white snow, a deliriously beautiful effect. Most scholars recorded that none of the moons had atmospheres of any kind.
The close proximity of the moons resulted in severe tidal forces, affecting not only the oceans but also the level of volcanic activity. At highest tide, the oceans were 50 feet (15 meters) higher than at lowest tide. This range could double in narrow inlets and bays. Tidal currents could rush at up to 25 knots (46 kilometers per hour) during normal conditions, and waves crashed against the shore about three times more quickly than they did on Toril.
The three moons would align in their orbits once every 1,680 hours, which was once every 28 Armistice days or 70 Toril days. When this occurred, the intense tidal forces would trigger violent earthquakes and volcanic eruptions over a period of about ten hours. Most such eruptions resulted in smoke and flame and most lava flows remained near the peaks of the volcanoes.
Armistice had five main continents. The three largest were Grishnakh, Taliak, and Ugrek. The two smaller were named Rakhar and Toborg. Despite the high levels of volcanic activity on the planet, the continental drift was slower than might be expected.
The frigid waters were divided into four major oceans, the Sea of Vengeance, west of Taliak; the Sea of Hatred, north of Taliak and west of Ugrek; the Landlost Ocean, between Taliak, Ugrek, and Grishnak; and the Sea of Woe, between Grishnak and Rakhar.
Once every 25 Armistice years, the alignment of the three moons on the opposite side of the planet results in a massive land bridge forming between Grishnakh and Taliak that otherwise was underneath the ocean. The bridge was crossable for several days before being flooded by the ocean again.
Numerous mountain ranges covered each of the continents, formed by volcanic activity and each with at least one major active volcano. Beyond the mountain ranges, the rest of the planet was relatively flat; the mountains seemed to jut straight out from the surface.
The planet did not have a good source of ore for metallurgy.
Armistice was covered in snow and ice all year round. The exception was the warmed craters of the volcanoes. The oceans were not frozen, because of the violent tidal forces acting constantly on their waters. In contrast, all direct sources of fresh water, such as lakes, were frozen solid.
Temperatures on Armistice varied with the season and the latitude, reaching highs of only a few degrees above the freezing point of water in the summers at the equator and dropping as low as −60 ℉ (−51 ℃) in the winter at the poles. These temperatures did not take wind chill into account, and the winds were a near constant factor, with blizzards being commonplace.
The only precipitation was in the form of snow, which was likely to be falling four or five days out of every six.
- Days with snow on ground: Perpetual
Source: Practical Planetology, p. 10
Flora & FaunaEdit
Few native plants or animals lived on Armistice, but the exceptions were dangerous ones. The surface contained remorhazes and tunnel worms or creatures very similar to them. These preyed upon several primitive mammals about the size of dire rats. Some claimed that even larger tunnel worms also lived at the bottoms of the oceans.
The only plants known to the surface were primitive mosses and lichens that covered the exposed rocks of the volcanically heated mountain peaks and giant-leafed plants that grew at the equator and kept low to the ground to capture as much sunlight as possible.
Armistice was home to all manner of humanoids that the elves collectively considered goblins. This included not only the true goblinoid races but also orcs, kobolds, and ogres. These races had adapted to life on the harsh, cold planet, developing gray or white skin and hair. The bugbears were stout and covered in white fur, looking much like yeti. The kobolds were also smaller in size and had pale gray skin. The orcs were almost dwarf-like in appearance and were less hairy with much thicker hides than their cousins from other worlds.
The inhabitants of Armistice primarily lived underground, in extensive tunnel and cave systems, divided up into various tribes of the separate races. The tribes were constantly at war with each other, and in culture, they were more brutal and violent than their kin on other worlds.
Since metal was rare on the planet, their technology was crude. Tools and weapons were made of bone and stone; there were no trees for wood. Clothing of any kind was rarely worn, since so few animals on the planet were furred.
Geographers believed that the continents of Toborg and Ugrek were once joined, as were the continents of Grishnakh and Rakhar. Ancient tales told of a sixth continent, a large one lying between Grishnakh and Ugrek where the Landlost Ocean later existed.
While sentient life never arose naturally on Armistice, it arrived there by other means. During the First Unhuman War, a half-orc warleader named Gralnakh Longtooth commanded the Combined Goblin Fleet and with it gave the Elven Imperial Fleet their first and most devastating defeat. Nevertheless, Gralnakh recognized that he could never truly defeat the elves, he could only delay the inevitable. The elves, too, saw that to win the war, they would have to slowly defeat every separate unhuman world and worldlet one at a time, which would take more time than the elves would spare. The elves' leader at that time, Admiral Aldyn Leafbower requested a parlay with Gralnakh, who accepted.
The two leaders made an agreement. In exchange for a ceasefire, the elves would provide an entire planet on which the peoples of the Combined Goblin Fleet would settle. The elves would swear to let the goblin-kin live freely, while the goblin-kin would promise never to leave the chosen planet.
The Council of Admirals was outraged that Leafbower had agreed to the armistice. They recognized that the agreement lacked a legal designation as to exactly which planet the unhuman fleet would be safely sent. In spite, they chose the most inhospitable planet that they could find, the one that would later be named "Armistice" after the agreement.
For hundreds of years after this, the elves had patrolled Armistice with a web of spelljammers and magical alarms, preventing anyone from ever entering or exiting the planet. Man-o-war patrol ships were ordered to destroy any vessels violating the defense barrier around the planet.
As for the followers of Gralnakh, their unity ended after his eventual death, and the separate races broke up into tribes. These tribes were able to maintain peace amongst themselves for about a hundred years, before the typical hatred among the races seen on other worlds emerged even more severely than elsewhere.
Over time, the gravity of Armistice made the descendants of Gralnakh's people stronger and more resilient. They longed to obtain spelljamming technology to escape their planet, but the elves made it clear that any sale of such technology to the people of Armistice would be seen as an act of war against the Imperial Fleet.
Orcs, kobolds, and goblinoids from other worlds believed in a rumor that Armistice was where a massive goblinoid fleet was building again in preparation for a Second Unhuman War. There was no evidence for this, but the elves encouraged the rumor, not knowing that there was some truth to it, truth that would not be revealed until the year 1362 DR.
In that year, in Realmspace, the Cloakmaster, Teldin Moore, was able to see through the eyes of the Spelljammer by means of a magic amulet. When he described what he was seeing to his friends Hectate and Vallus Leafbower, they suspected that he was seeing Radole, another planet in Winterspace. A course was plotted for this crystal sphere in response.
Shortly after entering the sphere, their vessel, the swan ship Trumpeter, was ambushed by bionoids and forced to make an emergency landing on Armistice, which was the nearest planet, off the shore of the continent Rakhar.
Unbeknownst to Teldin and his companions, orc clerics of Rakhar had possession of a primary witchlight marauder and were holding it in stasis with perpetual magic rituals. (It was believed that the marauder had originally been placed there intentionally by the elves with a time-stop spell, in case it should come about that the goblinoids of Armistice ever broke their agreement to never leave the planet.) The orcs kept it fed so that it would produce secondary witchlight marauders. The first of these had earlier been tested by the scro on an elven armada, and the monster successfully devoured its entire crew. A second was planned to be sent to the headquarters of the Elven Imperial Navy in Realmspace, Lionheart.
Aiding the scro in this plan was an insectare agent and a clan of bionoids, but they secretly intended to slay the orcish clerics after the destruction of Lionheart so that the goblinoids of Armistice would also be destroyed.
Meanwhile, while the swan ship crew struggled to make repairs while at anchor in a turbulent ocean and under triple gravity, they soon ran out of drinkable water, and had to send an exploratory party by longboat to the land to find water. The search party had found water and also a hot spring, but the latter was defended by a remorhaz and bugbears that seemed to them like yeti. A second search party was sent to investigate the bugbears, and they followed tracks to a set of twin peaks shaped like tusks that marked the territory of the goblinoids of Rakhar.
Sneaking into a tunnel into one of the mountains, they discovered a wide array of goblin-kin of every variety. These were actively constructing a rag-tag fleet of functional spelljamming vessels in this dead volcano. The search party returned quickly to the Trumpeter to make their report.
Shortly before the swan ship was repaired, Teldin observed another ship crash onto the surface of the planet, and he and the radiant dragon Celestial Nightpearl went to investigate, using their magics to disguise themselves as the white-furred bugbears of the region. They found a crashed insectare klicklikak and within their missing friend Hectare Kir who had earlier been captured during the bionoid attack that had crippled their vessel. While they rescued Hectare, an insectare spy snuck aboard their longboat.
Meanwhile, the scro called upon their Rakharian allies, and the small fleet of more than a dozen haphazard spelljammers exited the atmosphere of Armistice. An elven man-o-war tried to stop the escaping goblin-kin, but a group of cloaked shrike ships appeared, manned by bionoids in alliance with the scro, who released tertiary witchlight marauders on the elven patrol vessel. The marauders killed and consumed every person aboard.
At the same time, the repaired Trumpeter left the planet, in a rush to avoid the alignment of its three moons. It was pursued by a group of the crude orc vessels from the dead volcano. They found the battle an easy fight before realizing that it was a feigned attack to drive them to the larger force of scro in orbit. After a long space battle, which was only won because of the presence of a radiant dragon on board the Trumpeter, the scro force was defeated and the Cloakmaster survived.
After the Trumpeter reached Radole as originally intended, Vallus Leafbower gave secret permission for a lone agent to return to Armistice to assassinate the orcish witch doctors that were keeping the primary marauder in stasis. It was generally presumed that the witchlight marauder so freed eventually caused the full annihilation of all life on the Ice World, causing an irrecoverable blow to scro and their allies in the war.
- The Radiant Dragon
Disclaimer: The views expressed in the following links do not necessarily represent the views of the editors of this wiki, nor does any lore presented necessarily adhere to established canon.
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 1.2 Elaine Cunningham (November 1992). The Radiant Dragon. (TSR, Inc.), p. vi. ISBN 1-56076-346-9.
- ↑ 2.00 2.01 2.02 2.03 2.04 2.05 2.06 2.07 2.08 2.09 2.10 2.11 2.12 2.13 2.14 2.15 2.16 2.17 2.18 2.19 2.20 2.21 2.22 2.23 2.24 2.25 2.26 2.27 2.28 2.29 2.30 2.31 2.32 2.33 2.34 Nigel Findley (July 1991). Practical Planetology. (TSR, Inc.), pp. 10–13. ISBN 156-076134-2.
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 Elaine Cunningham (November 1992). The Radiant Dragon. (TSR, Inc.), pp. 198–199. ISBN 1-56076-346-9.
- ↑ Elaine Cunningham (November 1992). The Radiant Dragon. (TSR, Inc.), pp. 153–156. ISBN 1-56076-346-9.
- ↑ 5.0 5.1 5.2 Elaine Cunningham (November 1992). The Radiant Dragon. (TSR, Inc.), chaps. 20–21. ISBN 1-56076-346-9.
- ↑ Elaine Cunningham (November 1992). The Radiant Dragon. (TSR, Inc.), p. 238. ISBN 1-56076-346-9.
- ↑ Elaine Cunningham (November 1992). The Radiant Dragon. (TSR, Inc.), p. 214. ISBN 1-56076-346-9.
- ↑ Poster included in Nigel Findley (July 1991). Practical Planetology. (TSR, Inc.). ISBN 156-076134-2.
- ↑ 9.0 9.1 9.2 9.3 9.4 9.5 Elaine Cunningham (November 1992). The Radiant Dragon. (TSR, Inc.), p. 224. ISBN 1-56076-346-9.
- ↑ Elaine Cunningham (November 1992). The Radiant Dragon. (TSR, Inc.), p. 218. ISBN 1-56076-346-9.
- ↑ Elaine Cunningham (November 1992). The Radiant Dragon. (TSR, Inc.), p. 303. ISBN 1-56076-346-9.
- ↑ 12.0 12.1 12.2 12.3 Elaine Cunningham (November 1992). The Radiant Dragon. (TSR, Inc.), chap. 14. ISBN 1-56076-346-9.
- ↑ 13.0 13.1 13.2 Elaine Cunningham (November 1992). The Radiant Dragon. (TSR, Inc.), chap. 15. ISBN 1-56076-346-9.
- ↑ Elaine Cunningham (November 1992). The Radiant Dragon. (TSR, Inc.), pp. 154–155. ISBN 1-56076-346-9.
- ↑ Elaine Cunningham (November 1992). The Radiant Dragon. (TSR, Inc.), chap. 13. ISBN 1-56076-346-9.
- ↑ 16.0 16.1 Elaine Cunningham (November 1992). The Radiant Dragon. (TSR, Inc.), chap. 16. ISBN 1-56076-346-9.
- ↑ Elaine Cunningham (November 1992). The Radiant Dragon. (TSR, Inc.), chap. 18. ISBN 1-56076-346-9.