Thousands of years ago in the midst of the Atlantic Ocean, the island continent of Atlantis was the home of humans genetically enhanced by the alien Preservers, devoted to the protection of life throughout the universe. Using samples of technology left
behind by the Preservers and their own enhanced intellects, the Atlanteans created an advanced civilization. In time, they came into conflict with Lemuria the ancient civilization of the Serpent People. After generations of war they found themselves mutually annihilated by the Guardians placed with the duty of guarding the biosphere as the war had proved too costly in ensuring the planet's survival.
Atlanteans who found a way of surviving the Sinking, formed underwater nomadic tribes. It would be hundreds of years before the tribes would unite into the undersea Nation as it is known today. And even longer still before Atlantis had any formal contact with the outside world.
Atlantis is divided into 12 city states. Each with their own king and democratically elected Senate. The Royal Assembly, is a senate of two representatives from each of the city states whose authority equals that of their ruling monarchs. Above both the local senates and kings is the high king, ruler of all of Atlantis. The current High King is Theseus as the ruling clan is the House of Atlan. Each city-state is allowed two elected representatives in the royal assembly who act as a sort of supreme senate.
Although Atlantis claims dominion over the Seven Seas, the reality is that in practicality each city state can only maintain a sphere of influence within a day's swim of the city. As such tribal Atlanteans living outside of the city are left to their own devices. And with them, bands of Atlantean Barbarians. While Atlantis claims dominion over the Umiquan empire, and they in turn claim independence, the two nations the two hardly acknowledge one another. At the very least preferring one another's company to that of the Deep One's.
The current ruling family of Atlantis is the House of Atlan. With High King Theseus and Queen Ariallis at the helm. Princess Thetis is the direct heir to the throne. Queen Mother Evelynn is still alive and beloved by her people, but is not quite in physical shape to defend her kingdom any longer. Princess Thalassa (the adopted daughter and niece by blood of the King) and Prince Telemachus (youngest child, born in 2004) would be next in line after Thetis but neither want any claim to the throne.
12 Colonies of Atlantis
Amphitritis: Located in the Coral Sea between New Guinea and Australia is the sunken city of Amphitritis, named for the Greek ocean goddess and wife of Poseidon, Amphitrite. Culturally they are a war-like and aggressive people, they maintain a culture of gladiatorial arenas, trial by combat, and an aggressively xenophobic point of view.
Atlantis: Both the name of the nation and the city-state known as the capital of the empire Atlantis located in the mid Atlantic region. The House of Atlan, the current ruling clan of Atlantis, lives here. Atlantis is a symbol of wealth and prosperity, the large collection of farms and techo-magical crystals breed resentment from tribal Atlantean and Deep Ones who have not chosen to join life in the city.
Atlit Yam: A submerged city state off the coast of Atlit, Israel. Atlit Yam’s population are Cecaelia also known as octopus persons, their upper bodies are humanoid and, from the lower torso down they bear the tentacles of an octopus or squid. The people of Atlit Yam are furtive by nature, which makes details on the going ons sparse to even other Atlanteans. Sea witches from Atlit Yam make capable mentors for would be undersea sorcerers in training.
Cantre'r Gwaelod: Located in the Cardigan Bay, West of Wales, Cantre’r Gwaelod has perhaps the most amenable relationship with the surface of any Atlantean City-state. Citizens of Catre’r Gwaelod and the Amddiffynnwr O Lleu Llaw Gyffes share responsibility and preventing the Formorians from ever walking the earth again.
Crantorium: Nestled in the the Tyrrhenian Sea subdivision of the Mediterranean Sea, this Atlantean city-state is a bit of a resort town for Atlantean nobles. Crantorium has the smallest concentration of Atlantean soldiers, relying on the Atlantean capital for aid in case of an attack.
Hōzuki: Located inside of a dimensional fold within the Devil’s sea, Hōzuki is the homeland of the samebito. Samebito are sharkmen with emerald eyes. Whether they were Lemurian offshoots or not, the creatures will not reveal. Only nobility speak traditional Atlantean, the common people speak Japanese. Hōzuki has an overtly hostile relationship with Japan due to ambitious Japanese fishermen attempting to capture the sharkmen. In retaliation the samebito went so far as to capture an exploratory science vessel and demand the nation recognize their independence and no longer step in the Devil’s sea. Glamazon, Tsunami, Temperance, and Myrmidion were able to bring the hostage situation to an end but not the shared hostilities.
Kitezh: The first of two landlocked city states, Kitezh exists at the bottom Lake Svetloyar in Russia. Back in the 13th century, Atlanteans intermingled with local Russians and used their artifacts to allow the population to adapt to underwater life. The Mongol invasion led to a return to isolation from the surface. The city is cloaked with Atlantean technology completely undetectable from the outside.
Lyonesse: The smallest city-state in the entire nation of Atlantis, Lyonesse sits some 50 miles west of Cornwall. Lyonesseans are an offshoot of the Atlanteans, transformed by ancient magic into a hybrid race of merfolk, with fish-like lower bodies and humanoid upper bodies. Matriarchal in culture, Lyonessans are far more likely to seek council from Queen Aryallis than King Theseus.
Kreeg: Located in Angikuni Lake, Kreeg is a penal colony for Atlantean criminals and outcasts. The second of two landlocked Atlantean colonies, Kreegians turned to the Dark Mother when surface locals threatened their home. A barbarian Warlord answered their prayers, claiming to be a prophet of the Dark Mother he “gifted” the Kreegians with the “shadow-death.” And thus they became vampiric entities given the strength to wipe out an entire surface town in the blink of an eye. Leaving not a single trace of their work. Orzan became their leader, until the day he set his eyes on the Atlantean throne. Though King Thallor lost his life, and the Queen Mother suffered grievous injuries Orzan was bested by Theseus. Rather than completely raze the city to the ground and destroy the vampiric inhabitants, Theseus turned Kreeg into a penal colony. Kreeg is the only city-state without a king as soldiers assigned to guard the locale are essentially the locale government. Aside from the military presence the Kreegians are free to live their lives as they please (As long as they don’t attempt to flee Angikuni Lake).
Trapalanda: South of Patagoni, Trapalanda actually exists inside of a Dead Zone. The Trapalandans are sentient plant persons, with a foul smell. Nomadic Trapalandans tend to travel to swamps within the Iberra wetlands. The massive size of the Trapalandans may have been inspiration for the myths of the Pantagonian giants.
Vineta: Located in the the southern coast of the Baltic Sea. Vinetans have an extremely long lifespan even by Atlantean standards. It is said that the average lifespan of a Vinetan is twice that of any other Atlantean (in actuality it is closer to 1.2x in value). The city is known as a bit of a city of vices. Alantean Barbarians consider it a safe haven, and avoid raiding it as such. Gambling is rampant and the nobility is quick to abuse their power. Vineta is the only Atlantean city-state that practices slavery, keeping captive Deep-Ones for labor purposes.
Y’s: In 2003, a team of archeologists discovered the sunken city of Ys off the coast of Brittany and brought a few pieces of Atlantean “artwork” back to the surface. These scientists did not know this Atlantean colony had been destroyed because of its corrupt leaders—worshipers of the Nameless Ones—and that some of the artifacts they recovered were cursed. When one of the items was unwittingly activated by the unscrupulous French diplomat Alexandre Taillard de Würms, he was transformed into a strange, batrachian creature (going by the heroic moniker of the Frog Prince, Alexander had a respectable career as a French superhero for a decade after). When the Sea King became aware Ys had been discovered, he immediately sent a small army of Atlantean forces to occupy and protect the sunken city from scavengers.
The French government was unhappy with that outcome and relations have been tense between the nations for years. In fact, France’s protest are the single greatest reason that Atlantis has still not been granted status as a UN country. Ys is still under Atlantean control, and the city-state is occupied entirely by soldiers. Dark artifacts and even more dangerous ruins make the city the most dangerous assignment a soldier can volunteer for.
Culture and Physiology
Humanoid Atlanteans are indistinguishable from surface dwellers with a mixture of (mostly European) features. They tend toward Roman noses and jaw-lines. Pale eye colors (blues and greens, occasionally amber yellow or violet) and dark hair are most common. Amber eyes and silver hair are a sign of great evil in Atlantean culture, and as such children born with these features find themselves unfairly ostracized by more superstitious Atlanteans. Their muscle tissue is denser allowing for even the average Atlantean to have enough comparative strength to live a small car over their heads. Atlanteans do not have gills. Instead, the lining of their lungs has adapted to allow them to extract oxygen from water and to withstand considerable water pressure.
Atlanteans can also breathe air, although they’re most comfortable in an aquatic environment and dehydrate over time when they are not immersed in water. Atlanteans tend to be longer-lived than humans, with average lifespans of 90 years, and some truly venerable Atlanteans living to be 150 or more. Atlanteans who mate with humans find that Atlantean traits (such as their strength and lining of their lungs) generally are passed down without issue. Any mutations or powers from the human parent also seems to pass down without issue as King Theseus can attest.
Atlantis is a non-industrial, largely agrarian society. All abled bodies Atlanteans are expected to undergo basic military training for the
defense of nation. The standing Atlantean Army is actually very small as a result of being able to call upon the masses as a reserve force. Isolated from the surface Atlanteans are largely ignorant of the ways of man, and vice versa. Atlantis has a largely adversarial relationship with any offshoots of Lemurian society. Be they Deep Ones or the barbarian Serpent Persons living underneath surface society. Although Tribal Atlanteans are only officially considered "barbarians" when they begin attacking Atlantean settlements, many urban Atlanteans assume all tribal Atlanteans to be barbarians serving under a warlord.
Atlantean nobility will often add armor to their regular clothing as a sign of wealth and status. Regular Atlantean clothing is similar to to scaled one piece bathing suits made of hydrodynamic material. Atlantean weaponry ranges between vibration inducing, sonic, and blaster weaponry. With thrusting weaponry a particular favorite. Electrical weaponry is also not without use, but
Most Atlantean technology is powered by magical crystals drawing upon geomantic and geothemal energies, recharged in orichalcum-lined sockets linked to ley-lines. So while an Atlantean blaster-weapon may look like a pistol or a rifle, a surface world engineer taking one apart would find it a technological impossibility. The same is largely true of Atlantean vessels and other devices, such as the occasional Atlantean audio-visual projector, actually a tellurian crystalline based image generator, often with some telepathic components, rather than a video screen or camera.
Atlantean reliance on techno-magical devices makes their technology less mass-produced and ubiquitous compared to the surface world, since each item is hand-crafted, and many are often family heirlooms maintained, repaired, and passed down through the generations. This leads to an apparent mixture of ancient and modern styles and resources in Atlantis and a somewhat “retro-future” quality to their technology, since it generally lacks things like computers and electronics.
Edited by HG Morrison