The Zante are the island-dwelling “barbarians” of Sidereus, created as an amalgam of Pacific Islander culture. Dwelling largely in the island regions of Eastern Ursya, Myorea, or off the coast of Western Linerra (as well as other island/tropical areas), the Zante are a people with a robust history and diverse range of cultural traditions. Humans that hail from this cultural background are intensely spiritual and seem to have a deeper understanding of the natural world in regards to oceanic life than many of the other races in the world.
The Zante have a somewhat rigid caste system that organizes their entire sociopolitical structure. As a result, the Zante people have learned to place the wellbeing of the tribe above their own wellbeing, placing a special focus on the needs of the nobility and religious leaders. Tribal chieftains and sub-chieftains are referred to as “Akau”, leading over whole communities. Lesser nobility are referred to as “Etera” – which is also the name for the entire noble caste. “Kapu” is the title of the priestly caste, responsible for the tribe’s spiritual health. The commoner caste is “Akamu”, which is responsible for most of the more menial duties in a tribe. Literacy is not particularly common among the Zante – though when it is present it is typically a skill only the noble caste possesses.
The Zante people rely heavily on the bounty of the ocean for food, but the islands they inhabit also tend to have a great deal to offer in terms of food and materials for survival. They are often skilled sailors, hunters, and survivalists – and despite their relatively isolated origins, they tend to thrive among foreigners.
Cultural Advantages: Industrious. The Zante people have learned over the years to work well with limited supplies and resources. As such, many of their people develop a rather significant skill with improvisation of tools and other items in difficult situations.
Cultural Disadvantages: Superstitious. The Zante people have a powerful spiritual tradition. While this can be a benefit in many cases in a world where spirituality has power in and of itself, it can also prove detrimental in some since it leaves them with a variety of superstitious views. The most notable of these are a fear of Arcane magic and a dislike of High Alchemy.
Common Traits: Zante commonly acquire the Resist Enchantment and Tenacious Traits – as their strength of Spirit will often see them through the most difficult situations. Members of the Kapu caste will often take the “Blessed” Trait as it aids them in fulfilling their religious duties.
Common Skills: Zante frequently learn Laborer (Sailor), Fisher, Cartographer and Scout. Artists typically take the Performer skill since the Zante have a particularly strong oral tradition. Survivalist is almost universal among the Zante people.
Heroes: Zante Heroes are seen as emissaries of a higher power. They are most commonly herded into a religious life of some bent or another – sometimes as paladins, other times as priests. Many will serve as servants to the Akau – and some will even come to lead their own tribes simply because of shared perceptions of greatness.