Americana (DnD Campaign Setting)/The Facts
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Written by the Archivist, known to /tg/ as Amazing.
If you want the half-minute answer, Americana was created by myself and a bunch of Anonymous users on the subdirectory /tg/ on the imageboard 4chan for no reason other than we thought it'd be cool. It's since become more than that.
For a very long time, I was presenting this setting as something that anyone--ANYONE--could just waltz in and modify. This was for a lot of reasons, partially inertia, partially because I wanted information from people about the local flavor of their region since I'm not very well traveled myself. At this point, however, it's served its purpose, and it's time to face the facts.
I've been working on this project for six years with a couple of close confidants--GizmoGoblin and TechnoDann, specifically, with a little bit of input here and there from other people (shoutout to the Alaska guy, you know who you are. You jumpstarted this back to life with that e-mail). It's not a community project anymore, there's a LOT of me in it and at this point I've got it all hashed out (mostly) where I want it to go. It's just a question of making it happen now.
If you want to contribute, send me an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org and run what you've got in mind past me. But please don't just edit things willy-nilly anymore. There was a time when that was really important, but I feel like the time has passed.
The setting of Americana draws from a lot--a LOT--of various sources, all of which are related in some way to American folklore, history, geography, etc. If I listed them all I might as well just rewrite the damn thing on this one page, but some of the ones that might not be immediately obvious will go here.
The humans are obviously the white people of the setting, even if they're not all white people--the dominant majority with the technological and numerical advantage hell-bent on establishing their manifest destiny all over the place. The elves started out as purely an American Indian analogue but have since become a little more complicated, which was a deliberate decision and something I'm happy with. The kobolds are designed after the "hobo" culture and various drifter movements, which were particularly strong during and after the Great Depression. The orcs are designed after hillbilly culture, especially the Eastern ones. Goblins and hobgoblins respectively reflect two preeminent southwestern Indian cultures--the Pueblo city-builders and the Apache and Comanche who resisted the western march of the United States.
The Meheek are dangerously close to being racist as hell but I'm doing my best to do them justice. There's very strong and obvious Aztec inspirations in their current form, but also bits of Mexico circa the 1800s, which also had two Emperors, riotous internal conflict, and frequent brushfire or all-out wars with the US. Trying very hard to draw more from Mexico and less from the Mexica.
The dragons are notoriously out of place in this setting, which gets pointed out a few times, and don't really have an inspiration for being there. The way they ran the Great War is inspired by Illuminati/NWO/etc. conspiracy theory, however, and that's part of what fuels suspicion of Izzy's current Yellowstone project. There is also another NWO/OWG styled conspiracy which I am not saying anything more about right now until I can get them hammered into a form that looks remotely presentable.
Various legends and mythic figures of America have shown up here and there already--the Nain Rouge, Johnny Appleseed, Mark Twain, Mike Fink, Davy Crockett, the Lake Champlain monster, the Jersey Devil, the Untouchables of Chicago, etc., etc.. If you see something you don't recognize from D&D there's a high possibility it's from American folklore.
Every single scientist in the setting is based on one or more real American scientists or inventors--some are completely unaltered, like Robert Fulton. Others are fairly obvious, while others might take some thinking to determine.