Shadows of Europe
Worlds Population (2075):
Humans (Homo Sapiens Sapiens)
The metatype that has been around the longest (well, with one possible exception). You know them, you love them, and if you’re reading this there’s a high probability that you are one. They are balanced in their abilities and tend to have a little larger portion of luck (represented by Edge) than other metatypes.
Dwarfs (Homo Sapiens Pumilionis)
Shorter and stockier than humans. They tend to be quite strong and very resilient, able to recover from damage ranging from knocks to the head to doses of hemlock. Or knocks to the head with a club wrapped in hemlock leaves. Dwarfs are hard workers and tend to be highly valued by corporations, which means they are more deeply integrated into human society than the other metatypes. They still face discrimination due to their size, and they often have to take steps to make a world built for humans suitable for them.
Taller than humans, thinner, and have pointed ears. They have an extremely annoying knack for being more nimble than humans,
and they generally are better looking to boot. They also have very long lifespans, and continue to look young into their forties and fifties. They have occasionally been known to lord those facts over humans, or anyone who comes within hearing range. While most elves emerged at the Awakening along with the other metatypes, there are rumors that a few elves were hiding somewhere during the magical ebb of the Fifth World, and they are far older than any creature has a right to be.
Orks (Homo Sapiens Robustus)
Orks look like the creatures that have been dying by the score in fantasy movies and trideos for almost one hundred fifty years. With protruding brows, prominent tusks, and a large stature, orks have trouble avoiding the stereotype of being unthinkingly violent brutes. It doesn’t help that there are more than a few orks who are happy to live up to that stereotype rather than fight it. The end result is a certain underlying tension between orks and humans, which leads to both groups often preferring to live in separate communities. Elves and orks, on the other hand, often prefer to live in entirely separate countries. Despite the stereotypes, orks can be found in all walks of life, from dank alleys to corporate boardrooms. They have a shorter lifespan than humans, which often leads to them having a certain desperation to pack as much living into their years as they can.
Trolls (Homo Sapiens Ingentis)
Trolls make orks look like the ordinary man on the street. Orks might be, on average, less than a quarter-meter taller than humans; trolls, by contrast, are more than a half-meter taller than orks. Orks might look like a monstrous version of humanity; trolls, on the other hand, look like vaguely human versions of the creature from your most recent nightmare.
With thick, curled horns on their heads (some trolls prefer to have them cut, while others polish them with pride), spiky protrusions of calcium on their joints, and individual muscles that are larger than a full-grown pig, trolls give the immediate impression that they are built for destruction. Most of them are able to live up to that image. Not all trolls, though, are about absorbing and inflicting
damage. They have tried to find their way into different roles, but their large size combines with cultural stereotypes to make it hard for them to fit in. Orks tend to be the most accepting of trolls, and the two metatypes often inhabit the same neighborhoods. Typically these are not the most resource-rich neighborhoods in any given sprawl.