"There is no glory to be had alone cub, true glory comes from the pack. Together we hunt, together we prosper." -Horr the Scarred
- The world is hollow and filled with dinosaurs.
- The world has a lot of unsettled wilderness.
- Gunpowder and planes exist.
- There is no "Common" language - you need translators.
- Based on real-world cultures: Maori, Flemish, Mongol...
- No gods; mortals ascend to godlike status.
- No half-races - children will be the race of the father (if a boy) or mother (if a girl).
- Over 300 monsters, most found nowhere else.
- First appearance of the Tortle.
- Unique Races: Lupin, Rakasta, Phanaton, and Sidhe.
- Race Variants: Elf (Shadow, Vyalia, Belcadiz), Halfling (Hin),
The Planet of Mystara has three principal land masses: Brun, Skothar, and Davania, plus the island continent of Alphatia. The continents of Mystara resemble those of Earth approximately 135 million years ago. The Known World is concentrated on the eastern portion of Brun along with the lands of the Sea of Dawn. The Known World has cultures and a level of technological development that resemble Europe around the 15th century, but without gunpowder. Nations of the known world display a great range of government types. The Savage Coast is affected by the Red Curse, a sinister enchantment which eventually kills its inhabitants through mutation. The Savage Coast is complete with gunpowder. Davania and Skothar are largely unexplored. Mystara is a hollow planet, with a habitable surface on its interior called the Hollow World. This world is lit by an eternal red sun at the center of Mystara, and serves as a "cultural museum," preserving the societies that have become extinct in the outer world. The existence of the Hollow World is not, in general, known to the inhabitants of the outer world. Two moons orbit the planet. Matera is a moon much like our own, whose phases govern lycanthropy (werewolves, werebears, etc.). Only the Immortals inhabit Matera. They live in a city, Pandius, where they can meet and watch over Mystara. Patera, or Myoshima to its inhabitants, is an invisible moon that cannot be seen from Mystara. Patera's inhabitants have a culture similar to that of medieval Japan. The inhabitants of Mystara are diverse: humans of all races can be found here, along with myriad creatures such as elves, dwarves, halflings, orcs, and dragons.
Mystara began as several semi-independent projects by different teams of writers for Dungeons & Dragons at the time. Their work was gathered and compiled, blended, and combined to form the fantasy world, Mystara. Although it has officially been dropped from production by its creators, many fans continue to develop and evolve this fantasy setting jointly, continuing its original theme of group development. It originated as the Known World, a semi-generic setting used in early adventure modules.
- Blackmoor was the original campaign setting of Dave Arneson (co-creator of Dungeons & Dragons) dating back to the 1970s. Arneson left TSR in the early 1980s. Then in 1986 Blackmoor was retconned as being in the past of the Mystara setting through series DA - Dave Arneson's Blackmoor, being set in the same area of the planet as the core Known World of Mystara. Historically, the technologically advanced civilisation of Blackmoor destroyed itself cataclysmically, shifting the planet's axis.
- The Savage Coast which covers the area West of the core Known World, on the other side of the great desert of Sind. The Savage Coast features a substance called Cinnabryl (a.k.a. Red Steel) that gives its users great power but at the cost of addiction, sickness, mutations, death, or undeath. The setting has a strong piratical feel.
- The Hollow World which is another set of lands located on the inside surface of the planet Mystara. The Immortals use this as a safe area to place failed civilisations, preserving cultures that on the outer surface are extinct. The widely varying civilisations have little interaction with each other due to geographical barriers artificially created by the Immortals.
- Thunder Rift was created as a standalone campaign that could be slotted into any fantasy world. But the intention of the designer, Colin McComb, was always that it was part of Mystara, somewhere in the mountains bordering Karameikos (source). This beginners' campaign was then designed to lead players to the more complex world of Mystara, and the adventure Escape from Thunder Rift provided this link explicitly.
- Mystara is a series of computer games.