- Normal Gravity
- Normal Time
- Magically Morphic: Spells of the Shadow subschool modify the base material of the Plane of Shadow. The utility and power of these spells within the Plane of Shadow make them particularly useful for explorers and natives.
- Enhanced and Impeded Magic: Spells of the Shadow subschool or with the Shadow descriptor are enhanced on the Plane of Shadow, and thus cast as though Maximized. Also, Shadow Conjuration, Shadow Evocation, and Shades are 10% more real/have 10% greater effect.
Spells which use or generate light or fire may fail when cast on the Plane of Shadow. Any spell with the Fire or Light descriptor requires a Spellcraft check (DC 15+Spell Level) to cast successfully. Also, spells which produce light have their results suppressed as all light is on the Plane of Shadow.
Size: Planar Metropolis
- Population: 130,000; Integrated (Goblinoid 30%, Human-Vashar 20%, Other 30%)
- Power Center: Conventional, Nonstandard, Magical, Monstrous
- AL: N(E)
- Gold Limit: 600,000gp (Assets 3.9B gp)
Centuries ago, the hobgoblin godlin of shadow and stealth, Ninshigami, attempted to assassinate the bugbear god Hruggek in a bid to absorb his domain. He was rebuffed and his followers quickly ushered him away to the Plane of Shadow that he may recover from his grievous wounds.
Ninshigami’s followers brought him a plateau which overlooked a vast chasm, and on that spot, their god built a new home for himself. He did not, however, recover. Hruggek had wounded him too greatly, and the godling was absorbed into the plane. His cult became the mourners of a dead god, and mistrustful of divinity, both for Ninshigami’s ambition and Hruggek’s might. A small settlement had already grown around the tower, and the gods still presided over daily life on the Prime, and so the cult of Ninshigami built a monument of silence and his tower became the Academy of Shadows.
Though hobgoblins have darkvision, they are not accustomed to using it every waking moment, and their culture was thus not adapted to the perpetual gloom of the plane. Thus they began to create lanterns to read and discern color by. The ubiquitous of real light in the burgeoning city made it an attractive place for other mortal races to come, and as the settlement grew and became more powerful, outsiders began to find reason to use it. Lanternmaking became a prestigious craft, and before long, a guild of Lanterneers grew to produce such vital items and maintain them. Nearly every inhabitant of Balefire now has at least one lantern which they carry with them at nearly all times, and these can be very unique and distinctive.
Balefire’s quiet hostility towards gods made it an attractive home for those who wished to live without the influence of the divine in their lives, and there is a sizable Vasharan immigrant population in the city. They have been welcomed for the most part, but they well know to keep their customs to themselves and those who willingly participate. Fiends and Celestials also began using the city as a sort of neutral ground, and renegades of both factions have made the place their home.
The one form of creature which is generally not found in Balefire is undead. When Ninshigami’s cult chose the spot, they did not know they had settled beside a rift known as Nightcrawler Chasm wherein a truly immense conquerer worm made its home. Some time after Balefire had become a true city, this beast attacked it, slaying many with both its own might and its summoned undead. The majority of Balefire’s founders were slain in this attack, along with much of its citizenry of the time, but a Vashar Ur Priest stepped up and managed to drive the creature back. This ur priest, Xurithos, proclaimed himself to be Balefire’s highest authority and protector. He rules with dispassionate fairness, but is not the sole power in Balefire.
The Lanterneers guild is powerful enough to have a say of its own in the metropolis’ politics as the most influential member of the Council of Guilds, which also is seated by representatives from the College of Shadow and the Black Band, Balefire’s known but not spoken of Assassin’s Guild, among others. As the nightcrawler was never slain, it is also a constant potential threat which must be considered, and so exerts a sort of control over city politics of its own.