What a character knows about satyr history and culture depends on his intelligence and training, which a Knowledge check represents. A hero who makes an appropriate Knowledge check knows the following information about satyrs at the indicated DCs.
• DC 15 Knowledge (history) or Knowledge (local): Ten thousand years ago, night elves transformed into the first satyrs.
• DC 20 Knowledge (local): Satyrs are loosely organized into groups that dwell in ruins in northern Kalimdor's forests and in Desolace. They patrol the areas around their ruins. Almost all satyrs are combatants, and train as rogues or as dark spellcasters called hellcallers. They count corrupted ancients as their allies.
• DC 20 Knowledge (history) or Knowledge (local): Satyrs are demons. However, most satyrs are not members of the Burning Legion. Like all demons, they are vile and sadistic creatures who delight in causing pain, both physical and psychological.
• DC 25 Knowledge (arcana): Satyrs have specialized dark spellcasters called hellcallers.
• DC 25 Knowledge (history) or Knowledge (nobility and royalty): The first satyr was Lord Xavius, a Highborne in the time of the War of the Ancients. Xavius died in service to the Burning Legion, but his master gave him a second chance in a new body: that of a satyr. Lord Xavius and subsequent satyrs spread this corruption among the kaldorei and other races, and thus created the satyrs.
• DC 30 Knowledge (history) or Knowledge (religion): Most satyrs honor Xavius as their creator, though they know he fell in the War of the Ancients.
I cannot say what the satyrs did after the War of the Ancients. As I mentioned, satyrs can create more satyrs by passing their curse to other creatures. However, the curse has weakened over the millennia, and few new satyrs are created today (for which we can all be thankful).
When the Third War began, the satyrs again made their presence felt in small ways. Night elves encountered satyrs in isolated bands and settlements throughout their woodland home; and the satyrs opposed the night elves at every opportunity. It's clear to me that the presence of other demons roused the satyrs against their ancient foes.
Satyrs were a threat to travelers for long millennia; however, starting approximately 200 years ago, the night elf Sentinels began working hard to put a stop to their attacks. Since the end of the Third War, satyr activity has noticeably been on the rise. Thus, the satyr threat to adventurers traveling through northern Kalimdor and Desolace, Horde and Alliance alike, has increased. They possess neither the organization nor the numbers of the naga, the Scourge and other threats; but they will fight alongside the other demons when the time comes again.
"Satyr culture." Now there's a bit of an oxymoron, as satyrs possess little of it. Their society is organized into groups called "sects." A sect of satyrs lives in the same geographical region and has a specific mission. Satyrs of different sects get along only some of the time. They live in ruins scattered throughout northern Kalimdor and Desolace; satyrs prefer places of corruption to make their homes, such as Felwood and certain areas of Darkshore. Their sects are small, usually no more than a hundred individuals.
Satyrs are cruel and sadistic creatures. They enjoy tormenting other creatures, particularly intelligent ones. Satyrs patrol their territory, hoping they can find travelers they can eviscerate in the most bloody manner possible. They operate at a faster level than their former selves — while before they may have been stately and calm, they now burn with feverish energy. Their movements are swift and jagged, like predators sensing prey.
Northrend is the deadliest and most inhospitable place in the world. Or so many believe. During my travels, I found no land as cold and barren, and no wilderness as deadly, as what this unfriendly place has to offer. As if the frigid climate and desolate ice plains were not enough, the presence of countless savage creatures — such as ice trolls, frost wolves and wendigo — that roam the wilderness makes it almost impossible for travelers to journey safely across Northrend. What makes it even worse, however, is the presence of the Frozen Throne and the countless thousands of Scourge minions that crawl upon the land. Though some people do live in Northrend, almost no stranger visits this place.
I am one of those few explorers who journeyed across Northrend and survived. My visit to this inhospitable place would never have been the same had I not encountered the tuskarr. A friendly, peace-loving and honorable people living along Northrend's icy coasts, the tuskarr are a sturdy group of humanoids perfectly adapted to life in the great north.
I had never met one of their kind before, and I was grateful for the hospitality the tuskarr gave me. While
I was with them, Oolundruun Mirial, the elder of the great Oolundruun family, not only explained to me the basic principles and the importance of fishing and whaling — though I cannot say I understood much of these lessons — but he also related a portion of his people's history.
According to him, the tuskarr have long lived along the shores of this barren territory. In olden times, they understood the importance of working together as they fought off the many wild beasts haunting Northrend and learned to master the arts of fishing and whaling. Like many humanoids, the tuskarr learned to work in groups not simply to defend their lives and protect their loved ones, but also to provide food and shelter for their families. Before long, they founded villages along the coast. Set in remote locales that could easily be defended against enemies approaching from the mainland, some of these villages grew in size and importance. Today, the center of the tuskarr civilization is Kaskala, a cluster of villages in the Borean Tundra.
The tuskarr have fought the nerubians and ice trolls of Northrend for generations. To this day, they wage constant war against these bloodthirsty enemies, but aside from the occasional foray they seldom go on the offensive. Instead, they rely on the protection their remote villages provide.
Because tuskarr society is centered on the family, each family has its own history riddled with tales of past glory and mythical accomplishments. Tuskarr history relies on oral tradition and all members of a family learn the deeds of their ancestors. Because each family has its own story, which is closely tied to the history of the village where they live, it seems to me that chronicling a complete account of tuskarr history would be an almost impossible task. Nevertheless, sages and historians would do well to take a closer look at the tuskarr. Before long, the tuskarr will have to face the Scourge, which they have thus far managed to avoid. According to my friend Oolundruun Mirial, when the time comes the tuskarr will fight the Scourge for as long as they can, but they may eventually be forced to flee from their ancestral lands.
While I was with them, Oolundruun Mirial and the other tuskarr I met explained the basis of their society, its laws as well as its customs. From what I gathered, tuskarr culture can be stated in two lines. First, everything in their society revolves around the family. Second, each family relies on fishing and whaling for survival.
For a tuskarr, family does not simply come first. Family is what a tuskarr is. Every member of this race defines himself by his family, and a tuskarr's family name is always given first, before his personal name. When a tuskarr does something, everyone in the family is responsible for the individual's action. Thus, when a family member does something good, each family member shares the credit; when he does something bad, everyone shares the blame.
While I fail to understand how this could work in my own society, this mentality works well for the tuskarr. Every tuskarr is obviously aware that he is responsible for the reputation and well-being of each member of his family, and every tuskarr relies on the dependability and good deeds of those with whom he shares his family name. Thus, a tuskarr's family is the most important thing in his world.
This tradition is at the core of tuskarr society. Because of it, tuskarr laws are simple and rarely punitive. Family elders who have earned — through the deeds of their entire family — the respect of their peers become leaders of their society.
The tuskarr's economy — and indeed their survival — relies exclusively on fishing and whaling. The tuskarr have practiced these trades for as long as anyone can remember, and thus they are remarkable fishers and whalers. In fact, I don't believe any other race can match the tuskarr's level of competence in these fields.
Because fishing and whaling are so important to them, every tuskarr learns these trades from an early age. What is most surprising, however, is that one's accomplishment as a fisher or whaler also reflects on one's moral character. A tuskarr who is great in either of these trades is considered virtuous, while one who is less skilled is suspected of having shady ethics.
The tuskarr are among the most intriguing people I have met, and an adventurer would do well to earn the friendship of one of these remarkable beings. Given the tuskarr's strong family ties, however, doing so is no easy task.
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