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5E Looking for setting inspirations

prabe

Aspiring Lurker (He/Him)
Supporter
So, I'm going to be working on some areas of my homebrew world that are not where the adventures are happening now, and I am hoping that I can pull things or otherwise draw inspiration from published settings, maybe ease the workload some, help my own understanding of how to reflect these other cultures in game terms. If anyone has recommendations for settings or maybe real-world research, I'd find them helpful. I'm looking for, in no particular order: Viking/Finnish/Russian, Indian/SE Asian, Oriental (not the same as prior), Arabic (pre-Islamic, preferentially), Mesoamerican (mostly Inca, I suspect). I'm running in 5E, but I know 3.X well enough to pull from it. I'd prefer to stick to stuff that's more recent, because I figure it's more likely to be aware of appropriation and not do it more than absolutely necessary.

Thanks in advance!
 

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Tonguez

A suffusion of yellow
3e Mahasarpa is still available in the Wizards Archives and does India/SE Asia well even if it is a bit too tied to Rokugan.

I can think of a couple of Viking settings on Kickstartr

and is there any reason not to convert Al-Qadim or Kara-Tur?
 
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prabe

Aspiring Lurker (He/Him)
Supporter
and is there any reason not to cobvert Al-Qadim or Kara-Tur?

Only that I'm less familiar with the rules older than 3E, especially 2E after the first year or two. Doesn't make it impossible, just less easy.
 

Fenris-77

Small God of the Dozens
Supporter
The Midgard setting by Kobold press is a great resource for a more Viking and North-East European setting and mythology. For an arabic feel, the best resource I can think of is, oddly, Coriolis (which is a Sci-fi setting). The whole setting is very arabic though, and it's a fine object lesson in how to layer on arabic names, customs, and whatnot over a setting that usually doesn't swing that way. For the meso-american bit maybe pencil in a couple of hours to watch Apocalypto.
 

Only that I'm less familiar with the rules older than 3E, especially 2E after the first year or two. Doesn't make it impossible, just less easy.
Honestly I wouldn't worry about the mechanics of the setting. I'd just take the concepts and incorporate them socially. Al-Qadim and Kara-Tur are the quintessential guides for their perspective cultures. There's a 2E Vikings book that is historical in nature, with few mechanics. There's a Forgotten Realms setting based on the American Indians, which might give you some inspiration, but I cannot recall the name. As for SE Asia... I got nothing.
 



City of Gold was the 2e Maztica expansion that covered the continent north of Maztica itself. Heavily Pueblo and Anasazi-influenced if I recall. MazticaAlive on DMGuild has a lot of 5e resources covering these cultures (and an Incan analog) in FR, though I haven't read any of them. They may be worth a look. They're running a big bundle sale now - Maztica Alive! [BUNDLE] - Dungeon Masters Guild | Dungeon Masters Guild

I'm not aware of any significant D&D settings inspired by SE Asian, or pre-colonisation Australia, or Pacific Islander cultures, though I'd certainly be interested if anyone can recommend any.

Pathfinder might also be worth mining for a bit of inspiration. The Dragon Empires Gazetteer would be your first stop for Asian-influenced settings, I think they draw on places like Tibet and the Mongol steppe etc too, it's not just China and Japan.
 

noko

old hag of a DM
So, I'm going to be working on some areas of my homebrew world that are not where the adventures are happening now, and I am hoping that I can pull things or otherwise draw inspiration from published settings, maybe ease the workload some, help my own understanding of how to reflect these other cultures in game terms. If anyone has recommendations for settings or maybe real-world research, I'd find them helpful. I'm looking for, in no particular order: Viking/Finnish/Russian, Indian/SE Asian, Oriental (not the same as prior), Arabic (pre-Islamic, preferentially), Mesoamerican (mostly Inca, I suspect). I'm running in 5E, but I know 3.X well enough to pull from it. I'd prefer to stick to stuff that's more recent, because I figure it's more likely to be aware of appropriation and not do it more than absolutely necessary.

Thanks in advance!
Oriental Adventures is still a thing. The copy I have is 1e but I see there was an update to 3.5e and something might have been done for 5e.
 

Tonguez

A suffusion of yellow
just to note that although everyone thinks its India (because they used the Caste system to match Rokugan), James Wyatt said in a tweet in 2001 that his Mahasarpa is actually inspired by Angkor Wat - Cambodia..
 

I'm not aware of any significant D&D settings inspired by SE Asian, or pre-colonisation Australia, or Pacific Islander cultures, though I'd certainly be interested if anyone can recommend any.
I know someone is working on a more Pacific Islander themed setting which I saw on Twitter, but cannot for the life of me remember who it was or any specifics about it. But, there is at least someone going on that line
 

prabe

Aspiring Lurker (He/Him)
Supporter
just to note that although everyone thinks its India (because they used the Caste system to match Rokugan), James Wyatt said in a tweet in 2001 that his Mahasarpa is actually inspired by Angkor Wat - Cambodia..

That might make it more likely to be helpful to me, since the architecture of Angkor Wat is an inspiration for this part of my world, as well.
 

Draegn

Explorer
My players are in an area based on the pyramids of Meroe

 

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