Working on a WWI D&D Setting
Every country is primarily populated by a different race (with minorities in each of them of course). But, I can’t help but snicker at myself over the fact that I made the Belgians Firbolg, because there’s something hilarious to me about the thought of a Firbolg Hercule Poirot finely grooming himself, getting his mustache just right, walking with his little gait, carrying a telescope cane, and being the most dignified looking hairy butterball in the world.
Gosh I want to DM that campaign so bad.
For reference, here are the other races/county combinations and a brief rationale:
German – High Elves/Wood Elves, the black forest of central Europe, source of most elfin mythology.
Russia – Skinchangers, Werewolves and Werebears (Werewolves are the Aristocracy, Werebears are the up and coming Communists).
France – Tieflings, because the French are fashionable little devils.
England – Hobbits, half elves, and humans. Part of me wants to exclude humans from the campaign entirely though. But maybe I’ll make the Welsh humans for fun.
Switzerland – Dwarves. Neutral, mountain-dwelling, want to be left alone.
Poland - Goliaths (peaceful, salt of the earth folk, caught between two global superpowers)
Ottomans – Genasi (Turkey - Wind & Water), Arabia (fire), Egypt (earth).
Greece – Satyr, there are a lot of fantasy races that could be Greeks, but I think Satyr fit best.
Australia – Drow (for the meme)
Serbia – Kenku (Bird heraldry on flag, but brought low by the stronger Austria-Hungary)
Romani – Kobalds (an oft looked down upon race) or Elan (Psionic humanoids who don’t quite fit in).
Romania – Dragonborn (strong dragon mythology in Romania, obvious choice)
Austria-Hungary - Aarakocra (The stronger bird folk in central Europe)
Bulgaria – Centaur (Centaur lived in the northern hills of Greece in Greek Mythology, Bulgaria was well-known for cavalry during the middle ages. These things just fit).
Belgium – Firbolg (because of Poirot)
Albania – Damphir (I forget my rationale for this one to be honest)
Italy – Aasimar (If the French are devils, the Italians are angels, pfft)
Netherlands – Tritons (Way too obvious)
Africa – Loxodon and Lizardfolk and Leonids (Because of course Africa gets the cool races)
Norse – Bugbears (not overly sold on this one, but the thought of the Nordic countries all being vaguely Grendel shaped seems fitting)
USA – Orcs - not sure if I want the USA in the historical setting - maybe just make it an extension of the Iroquois Confederation.
South American - Tabaxi (If there were Llama Folk, I would so go for those)
Canada – Treants (admit it, you laughed at this one).
India – Yuan-ti (Because Naga are big in Indian mythology)
China – Gith (Not sold on this one either, but there’s something compelling about the Githyanki and Githzerai being a split/divided race that seems to fit with historical China’s internal divisions).
Mongolia – Hobgoblins (Counterparts to the Orcs of North America).
Japan – Oni and Spirit Folk (either/or - I love the thought of civilized Oni though, hate when “evil races” are diminished to savage brutes. Give them art and culture and technology and philosophy of their own, make them unique and interesting).
Anyways, I think this would be a fun setting, maybe make two parallel campaigns where the players have PCs fighting on both the Central Powers and the Allied Powers.
If you have suggestions or thoughts, please leave a comment. Please?