World of Mara
The Age of Gates
The Age of Gates – Fifth Age
The achievements of The Age of Heroes led to a golden age known as the Age of Gates. Vast kingdoms and empires covered the land. Culture, trade, and magic flourished. Permanent magical gateways were erected.
The Gateways served as infrastructure for vast empires – allowing impossibly fast transport of resources and knowledge. By the height of the Age, countless gateways were in use connecting virtually every civilized power to every other civilized power in the world. Magical gates ways also connected the world to the inner and outer planes.
Gateways allowed cultural exchange between vastly different peoples. To the current day it is not uncommon in many lands to see different races, guilds, and magics from far off lands existing as part of the culture.
Eventually civilization's power and ambition exceeded it’s wisdom. Gateways to the home planes of demons, devils, and other monstrosities were opened. It was only a matter of time before control of some of these gateways was lost. Hordes of hostile outsiders invaded Mara plunging the world into chaos. The Gods involved themselves to various degrees, even risking taking physical form on Mara in order to fight the invaders. Some paid the price of that gamble and it became known that even a god can die.
Facing the possibility that Mara could become a realm of eternal nightmares, an alliance of Gods, Ascendants, and powerful mortals took action. It is unknown exactly what they were trying to achieve, or how they went about it, but the effects at least, were quite clear – they created The Dimming.
The Dimming greatly reduced the force of magic upon the world of Mara by blocking it’s connections with the other planes. Every gateway on Mara ceased to function. The blockage was not total – lesser magics continued to function but the most powerful spells and magical abilities simply ceased to function. Some communication, by means of the lesser magics, was possible with the planes and the gods but travel between Mara and any of the planes was impossible by any means. The invaders, hampered by the same loss of magical power as everyone else, and cut off from reinforcements, were eventually defeated.
Success came at a heavy cost. The wars with the outsiders had already shattered nations and wiped out entire civilizations. The loss of the gateways caused even more havoc. Without trade, multitudes were cut off from food and other vital goods. Governments fell from internal and external pressure. Whole cities and regions were abandoned as life without the gateways was no longer sustainable.