humans are not quite as old as some of the other races in astorea. while elves, dwarves and some others can live up to hundreds of years, humans aren't quite to be thought as "immortal." though, that isn't to say that some won't extend their lives through magic! their main cities are nymeria and vale, and they make the best thieves and fighters, and in recent years, humans have been known to take up druidism, as well. as humans tend to breed at a much more rapid rate than the other races, their population has increased much more and this has cause a lot of hostility between humans and other races.
thought to be immortal at one point, elves are probably one of the oldest races in astorea. physically, they are taller and more lean than the other races (especially dwarves), and have pointed ears. their features are thought to be immaculate, because of how attractive elves can be. politically, they don't get along best with the humans as there is a lot of hostility between them. because the elves are such an ancient race, they have invented a number of things, from makeup, to the first mage's college, perfumes, and the list goes on.
dwarves are a tough race, living deep within the mountains. for years, the dwarves lived under ground, deep within the mountains while they kept to themselves; they invented a number of things in this time, such as guns and gunpowder, and a large forge in the center of their biggest city. dwarven black smithing has created some of the strongest steel, armor, and weapons. along with these, dwarves are also known for breeding gryphons.
Orcs receive the most racism out of any other race in Astorea. They are brutish, and not the most attractive--and sometimes, not the smartest, either. Though they brought to the world of Astorea shamanism and magic based on the elements, Orcs also have a tendency to be very barbaric and brutish, making excellent fighters due to the lack of fear which their rage gives to them. Their appearances vary: small tusks protrude from their mouth, their skin varying between green, grey, and brown. Because of their lower intellegence, Orcs make better fighters and shamans than they do mages or druids, and they are skilled with animals--particularly wolves and boars
dark elves, or drow, are physically similar to elves in that their features--especially their ears--are just like that of a normal elve's. however, the dark elves get their names from their darker skin. unlike the regular elves who make their homes in forested areas, the dark elves prefer to live under ground, much like the dwarves.
Despite the racial tension between Elves and Humans, there are some who can look past political and social disdains. Half-Elves are those who come from parents who are Elf and Human. They show both physical traits for Humans and Elves: slightly ponited ears, and just a little bit shorter than normal
half-orcs, much like the half-elves, are the result of a human breeding with an orc. physically, their builds still hold some resemblance to orcs, as they are big in stature, with the pointed ears and sometime the skintone but not always with the tusks. because they are both human and orc, it is hard to a half orc to fit in with any particular orcish warband, or human settlement and this leads to a lot of nomadic half orc people, as well as racial tension.
ANY race can fall victim to this disease! Highly infectious, one will become infected by Vampyrism by coming into contact with anothe Vampire. Typically, those who contract this disease will do so by being bitten. Contrary to popular belief, those infected with Sanguinare Vampyres can go out in the sun, though it will weaken them and sap their energy. Those infected will look strikingly different to others who aren't, but they can fit in! If a Vampire hasn't fed for a long time, they will look ravenous, with red eyes and protruding veins on their pale, white skin. Vampires who feed regularly, however, tend to be flawless looking; their skin is pale, and smooth, the hungry look gone from their eyes and allowing them to blend in with much more ease. A Vampire's main weaknesses are fire. They are not repulsed by garlic, but they cannot cross onto holy or concecrated land. As this is primarily a disease, there is a cure, for those who wish to rid themselves of Sanguinare Vampyres: they must perform a specific ritual to be rid of the disease and have their souls cleansed.
Vampires also come with a myriad of special abilities. While they are weak to the sun and to fire, a Vampire can do the following: turn into a wolf, turn into a bat, summon bats, run at supernatural speeds, wall-climbing abilities, gaseous form
Werewolves are those who have been bitten by another who is infected with Lycanthropy while under the full moon. When they are not in their wolf form, someone who is infected with Lycanthropy will look perfectly normal. The only difference is a slight smell of dog about them. They transform only a few times a month: during the full moon, in which the become ravenous, savage, mindless monsters. The form of a Lycanthrope is what one would expect: a large wolf, with golden eyes and a thirst for blood. It has been known that after a transformation, some Lycans will not even recognize their best friend and have even mauled their own families. It is believed that the very pain of the transformation is what drives them mad. To rid oneself of Lycanthropy, he who is infected must undergo a ritual similar to the Vampire to rid themselves of their disease
wood elves are much like the other elves, though they have most in common with the high elves. they are a bit shorter in nature, but their age and lifespan is equal. their skin tends to be a slightly darker hue, and their magic is best suited with nature and druidic magic. wood elves feel most at home in the woods and forests of astorea, and this is wher they tend to make their homes. their cities are high in the trees, shrouded by foliage and branches and their guards are highly skilled archers. it is said that if you wander too far into a wood elf's territory, their arrow will hit you before you even see, let alone hear, the archers coming.
nords are the humans who have made settlements in the northern territories. they are a tough, hearty race, with thick accents and who always love a challenge. there isn't much difference between a nord and a regular human, except for maybe their tolerance for colder climates. while most humans worship the pantheon of gods, the nords worship valhalla and honor death like a victory, as they do not fear death the way others might.
dragons, much like elves and dwarves are ancient. they predate the elves, and most of the other races-- though given the way the dwarves live, it is thought that they might be as old as the dragons as well! dragons are large, reptillian creatures. the color of their scales vary, from chromatic, red, blue, green, gold, bronze, silver, white, and black. the color of a dragon's scale dictates what the dragon's abilities will be. dragons have a variety of abilities; in their natural form, they have both their breath-weapons (re: breathing fire or acid), as well as their dangerously sharp claws, powerful tails, and dangerous teeth. many dragons tend to keep to themselves, while others shapeshift to match the other races of astorea and blend in, often mingling in with mages and scholarly types who might be able to match them intellectually. for more information on dragons check here.