The Red Induction
Azlant (pronounced AZZ-lant) is a lost island continent in the Arcadian Ocean. It was the first center of human culture, brought together by the alien intelligence of the aboleth. Azlanti society and culture grew by leaps and bounds until their arrogant leaders began to think of themselves as superior to their aboleth masters. In retribution, the aquatic creatures called down the Starstone in -5293 AR, sinking the entire continent and condemning Golarion to the Age of Darkness.Now all that remains of the once-mighty continent are a string of islands and atolls spread across a large swath of the mid-Arcadian; they are the only parts of the continent still above sea level
Little is known of the history of the first human civilization, other than the sad story of its destruction. Many scholars believe that the Azlant arose from the slave pits of the aboleths, possibly indicating that their masters had engineered the Azlant from primitive human stock, and instilled them with intelligence and power, though there is no known evidence to back this theory. Myths tell of an ancient war between the Azlanti and a race known as the serpentfolk. The Azlanti are said to have driven their enemies off the face of Golarion and into the Darklands. In the war’s final battle, Savith, an Azlanti hero beheaded the serpent god Ydersius in the Darklands realm of Sekamina.
It is also rumored that exiles of Azlant founded the empire of Thassilon.
Some legends state that the demon lord Zura was once a queen of Azlant who lusted after eternal life. In these tales, Zura’s depraved acts led to Azlant falling into decadence and was one of the catalysts for the Age of Darkness.
Sun Temple Colony
Thousands of years later, the Taldan colony of Andoran sent out a fleet of ships to build a colony upon one of the few remaining islands of Azlant. Over a dozen ships perished in the voyage over the treacherous Arcadian Ocean, and the rest wrecked upon the sharp reefs near the coast. When the 200 survivors landed and climbed the nearest high hill, they found an ancient temple dedicated to some forgotten Azlanti sun god. They founded their Sun Temple Colony there, and did their best to keep the settlement going over the following centuries. Contact between the colony and the homeland became more sporadic in the late 44th century AR, until all communication ceased sometime in the early 45th century. The final message was incomprehensible, stating something about a “weeping gate” and warning of “an inner eye in the minds of us all”. Since then no one has heard from the colonists, although passing ships report still seeing strange lights coming from the island from time to time; the colony’s ultimate fate remains a mystery.
Ancient Azlanti culture was said to have been highly sophisticated, and the few artifacts which surface in the markets around the Inner Sea from time to time still draw great wonder and praise. Azlanti architectural styles or symbols have been copied from ruins and have inspired countless cultures throughout the centuries.
Perhaps the most persistent legacy of Azlanti magic are the renowned ioun stones that they are believed to have first developed (or at least discovered). Since the fall of the Azlanti, no one has managed to match their knowledge or understanding of the arcane device. The leadership of the Pathfinder Society are especially enraptured by the ioun stones, but have limited real understanding about them.
Earthfall shattered the continent of Azlant, reducing it to a maze of sea-canyons.
The island of Mordant Spire, on the far western edge of Varisia, remains one of the few inhabited remnants of this once great continent. The elves who live there guard its secrets fiercely, for fear that trespassers would bring a second doom upon the world.
Numerous ruins of Azlanti colonies are known to exist along the Inner Sea and further inland, although most remain hidden or unexplored.
People and descendants
No pure-blooded Azlanti survive to the present, although their genetic influences are noticeable in today’s Taldans and Chelaxians. The Azlanti were a proud race with skin tones ranging from olive to pale white, and predominantly dark hair. High brows and receding hairlines, in addition to eyes of a deep purple color, are still seen as Azlanti characteristics, and held in high regard in these countries. Taldans, especially, claim that their empire was founded by descendants of Azlant, who displaced the local humans. The god Aroden is said to have been the last full-blooded Azlanti, and with his apparent death that bloodline seems to have come to a close.
Several other species are said to be descended from the Azlanti, although this connection cannot be known for sure.
- Gillmen: Also known as the Low Azlanti, these amphibious creatures long ago took to living below the sea. They maintain a connection to the surface world through their presence on the Isle of Kortos, especially in Escadar and the neighborhood of Gilltown in Absalom. They are said to have the best claim for being the true sons and daughters of Old Azlant.
- Dark folk: Descendants of Azlanti who fled the destruction of Earthfall and descended into the Darklands, they can be divided into two related species, the dark stalkers and the dark creepers.
- Mongrelman: These degenerate descendants live in the Darklandsrealm of Nar-Voth.
- Morlock: In an insane drive to maintain racial purity, these Azlanti descendants eventually devolved into the bestial morlocks. They now dwell primarily in the Darklands realm of Sekamina