The Elemental Plane of Air is an empty plane, consisting of sky above and sky below.
The Elemental Plane of Air is the most comfortable and survivable of the Elemental Planes, and it is the home of all manner of airborne creatures. Indeed, flying creatures find themselves at a great advantage on this plane. While travelers without flight can survive easily here, they are at a disadvantage.
- Subjective directional gravity. Inhabitants of the plane determine their own “down” direction. Objects not under the motive force of others do not move.
- Enhanced magic. Spells and spell-like abilities that use, manipulate, or create air (including spells of the Air domain) are both empowered and enlarged (as if the Empower Spell and Enlarge Spell metamagic feats had been used on them, but the spells don’t require higher-level slots).
- Impeded magic. Spells and spell-like abilities that use or create earth (including spells of the Earth domain and spells that summon earth elementals or outsiders with the earth subtype) are impeded.
Elemental Plane of Air LinksEdit
Several portals exist to other planes. A majority of these portals lead to the Prime Material Plane, in the form of a vortice (a naturally occurring portal between the elemental plane and an airy section of the prime material plane). Actual portals to the Prime are more common than anywhere else, and exist as doorways and holes in chunks of earth that dot the plane. Portals to other planes are rarer, but not unheard of. Portals to the Windswept Depths of Pandemonium, the Infinite Layers of the Abyss (particularly air-dominant layers), and the Wilderness of the Beastlands.
By far, however, the most common way to enter and leave the plane is to simply head to the "border regions" where the Elemental Plane of Air becomes tainted with another element or energy. These areas act as transition areas to neighboring planes (The Quasi-Elemental Planes and the Para-Elemental Planes).
The Elemental Plane of Air is inhabited by a multitude of creatures. Birds of many shapes and sizes, from ravens, parrots, eagles and swallows to rocs and titanic owls fly about the plane. They are accompanied by winged animals and flying snakes. Also, many other flying creatures such as hippogriffs, pegasai, griffons, sphinxes and asperii reside here.
Occasionally, flying fey also come here, so pixies and the like are not rare.
Air elementals make up a majority of the planes inhabitants, from the tiny ones that comprise air elementite swarms to the powerful air elemental monolithsC and enormous primal air elementals. Omnimentals, Air Element Wierds and Tempests also reside with the elementals. Air Element versions of prime material creatures can be found throughout the plane.
The Djinni and Noble Djinni reside here, with many of their servants, including Janni, Air Gen and tasked genies. Visiting Qorrashi are common as well.
Monadic Devas roam all the inner planes, including the Elemental Plane of Air.
Air, dust, and steam mephits also reside here - along with air mephlings.
The Elemental Plane of Air has many other inhabitants, including invisible stalkers, arrowhawks, chichimecs, breathdrinkers, amethyst and crystal dragons, air element drakes, orglash elementals, votexes, Soarwhales, windghosts, sylphs, aerial servants, spirits of the air, cyclonic ravagers, cloudscouts, air genasi, cloud and storm giants, and half-air element creatures.
Movement and CombatEdit
Movement on the Elemental Plane of Air is described in the section on subjective directional gravity. Creatures with a fly speed have their maneuverability increased by one step while on the elemental plane of air (clumsy to poor, poor to average, average to good, good and perfect to perfect). In addition, any flying creature can dive, moving in the same fashion as other, non-flying creatures.
On the Elemental Plane of Air, a larger number of attackers may assault a target, being able to attack from above and below.
Characters my want to dive on opponents as a charge. If they do so, they get all the benefits and hindrances of a charge. Alternately, the can simply plummet toward a helpless or stationary target, using the rules for falling objects if they do so. The damage in the latter case applies to both the target and the attacker.
Features of the Elemental Plane of AirEdit
For travelers arriving on the Elemental Plane of Air for the first time, the greatest danger is the panic of finding themselves in midair without even the sight of the ground beneath you. Some travelers have plummeted to their deaths, never realizing where they were and how a simple thought could stop their descent. Setting the wrong direction as "down" can be fatal in such cases if there's a solid object along the path of descent (and if you fall far enough, there always is).
But other than that risk, the Elemental Plane of Air offers no inherent danger. There are regions of extreme weather, but they are a danger to the natives as well as visitors.
On a long-term basis, obtaining food and water is a problem. Rainfall can provide water, but food is always scarce. Elemental creatures, made of the substance of the plane itself, tend to dissipate when slain, and real food is hard to come by. The djinn are welcome allies to many travelers from elsewhere, because they can create food, water, and wine.
Barring clouds, fog banks, and other impediments to sight, vision on the Elemental Plane of Air is unaffected. The entire plane is limned with a pearly radiance of no difinitive source, as if the base matter of the plane held its own radiation.
Winds and WeatherEdit
The Elemental Plane of Air is constantly in motion, ranging from gentle breezes that tug on a traveler's cloak to mighty tornadoes that spiral through the empty skies. The majority of the winds are light and moderate, and only in specific situations will winds be sufficiently large to impede or damage travelers.
Use the weather hazards rules in Ultimate Power for winds of various strengths. In almost all cases, creatures are airborne on the Elemental Plane of Air (so they are treated as one size category smaller for the purpose of wind effects). Creatures that find something sufficient to hide behind avoid this penalty, but if blown away, are thrown into the wind itself, taking damage each round until the wind dissipates.
The clouds themselves, commpn features on the plane, have the same effect as fog, obscuring all sight, including darkvision, beond 5 feet. This is effectively an Obscure 6 (all visual) effect. Arrowhawks and other scavengers often hide in clouds to ambush their prey better.
Extreme weather is also common on the Elemental Plane of Air, including snow, rain, sleet, hail, duststorms, thunderstorms, blizzards, and hurricanes. Despite the lack of objective gravity on the plane, rain does occur, fallinf for miles before dissipating and being swept up in new clouds.
Often the result of long-forgotten battles, cloud of choking smoke hang in the calmer regions of the plane, backwaters of the greater air currents. Occasionally they are swept up into great moving walls, but in general the smoke banks are relatively stationary. Large amounts of fire also generate smoke banks that hover around the source of the flame.
Characters who enter areas of heavy smoke are affected as noted in Ultimate Power.
The weightless nature, empty disposition, and hospitable environment makes the Elemental Plane of Air ideal for powerful individuals including wizards and sorcerers who want uninterrupted time for long-term studies, clerics of all alignments escaping the threats of more dangerous planes, and even monastaries and libraries whose users seek solitude and reflection. Any chunk of rock or mineral large enough to support a building's foundation is the site of some structure (or at least it has been in the past).
Given the nature of subjective gravity, the rooms within such a structure may all have the same direction of gravity, or the structure may be a crazy quilt of rooms with shifting gravitational directions. Often this depends on the needs of the users. Those who expect visitors provide a common "down" direction for reference.
Settlers on the Elemental Plane of Air have to provide their own method of acquiring food and water, so many strongholds are set up near gates and vortices that allow easy access to other planes. In addition, the wizards, clerics, and monks who make these floating fortresses their homes must make peace to some degree with the local elemental and outsider population, either by negotiation or force. Not all invaders do so successfully, and travelers may discover the empty towers and citadels of wizards whose flesh has been ripped from their bones by angry invisible stalkers, or whose strongholds are frozen solid after crossing a foul-tempered ice para-elementalMoP.
The djinn are among the most accomodating of the outsiders, that make the Elemental Plane of Air their native realm. They tend to settle the larger chunks of physical matter on the plane, shards of rock and earth ranging from a few thousand feet to several miles across. Each of these islands has its own gravity, and the guests of the djinn move around as on the Material Plane.
A typical djinn community on the Elemental Plane of Air consists of 3-30 of these creatures, 1-10 jann or tasked genies, 2-12 air gen, and 1-10 elemental creatures of low intelligence who act as servants, pets, or guardians. The most powerful of the djinn in the stronghold is known as the sheik. The sheik may or may not be a noble djinni. Such strongholds are often nothing more than opulent pleasure domes, but the djinn also raise livestock (often horses for racing) and maintain gardens and fountains.
Djinn gather strongholds into larger, allied confederations. In case of attack, a stronghold sends one if its members to the nearest allied stronghold, which in turn sends two more messages to its allies. In a short time, a horde of djinn have been rallied for the fight. As a result, successful attacks against djinni strongholds must be rapid strikes.
Powerful caliphs rule the confederations of djinni strongholds with each caliph holding titular sway over all strongholds within two days' flight. These caliphs, in turn, swear fealty to grand caliphs.
Elemental Air LocationsEdit
- Borealis: Built around a vortice to the Quasielemental Plane of Radiance, this palace appears to be made of stained glass. Borealis is inhabited by NythsMon.
- The Court of Ice and Steel: The Court of Ice and Steel is the capital of the djinn on the Elemental Plane of Air. It's an aerodynamic, oval-shaped vessal crafted of ice and metal, and it serves as both a military citadel and as the palace of the Great Caliph of the Djinn, who can control its movement through the plane. The Court is orbited by a number of spheres and stones, the freeholds of visiting djinn or the members of the Caliph's court. Sardior, king of the gemstone dragons, brings his flying castle to the Court from time to time. According to djinni history, the Court of Ice and Steel was not created by the djinn themselves: their first Caliph stole it from an evil archomental. It is also the home of the Invisible College, a group of Air Gen, Djinni, and Noble Djinni sorcerers.
- Desert Wind: The pharonic deity Shu makes his home here, an area of warm, swirling breezes. Golden flecks drift to and fro in this area, like desert sand kicked up by a looming sirocco. Shafts of sunlight lance through the realm, warming travelers they touch even further. Only those whom Shu allows can enter his realm.
- Eagle's Hold: Named for the shape this blue-tinged glass structure takes, Eagle's Hold is the home of Zintar, God of Flight on Nantar. This area is home to numerous flying creatures of all shapes and sizes, including his son Silfrethian.
- Great Funnel: The home of Akadi, Queen of the Air Elementals, the Great Funnel is a whirlwind large enough to encompass an entire planet.
- Jyskar: Jyskar is a large castle made of solid cloud. It is the home of an enigmatic being known as the Cloud King, and he rarely interacts with others in the plane. Only the most powerful of the planes residents, beings like Akadi, Shu, or the air Archomentals are ever admitted into the castle. All others are sent away.
- Mount Sangaree: Over 100 miles "tall", this vast mountain of ice floats in the plane, shrouded in cold fogs and howling wind. Local gravity gives the otherwise directionless location a sense of height and danger. At the apex, a blot of super-chilled yet unfrozen water lies trapped beneath a thin veneer of ice. It is easy enough to break through the coating to reach the water beneath, but the very air freezes soon after, once more encasing the liquid in ice.
- Palace of Unseen Contemplation: A palace made of glass, this is the home of Chan, the Princess of Good Air Creatures.
- Taifun, the Palace of Tempests: This immense palace of stone is built upon a great floating mountain near the border of Air and Lightning. Spreading from the mountain in every direction is a spiderweb of docks, where there is an armada of airships. These ships and the palace are in control of Haalifith (Male Air GenasiMon Ftr 4/Msh 14, CN).
- Tower of Glass: The Tower of Glass is a huge tower made of an opaque blue glass substance that is as hard as mithril. The tower is the home of Khefer, a powerful mutant from Earth in the Kingdom of Power. He rules a small army of Air Elementals and CloudscoutsDu110.
- The Waterspout: This is a pair of vortices to the Elemental Plane of Water. Water exits out of one vortice, travels 500 yards through the Elemental Plane of Air, and then enters the other vortice, back to its native plane.