Darklands of Tian Xia

From PathfinderWiki

The Darklands of Tian Xia, the Darklands region below the continent of Tian Xia, is in some ways similar to, but in other ways very different from, that of the Inner Sea region.1


Like its western counterpart, the Darklands of Tian Xia are broken down into three levels, Nar-Voth, Sekamina, and Orv. While entrances to the Darklands can be found across the length and breadth of Tian Xia, there are three that have achieved particular renown:1


The upper reaches of the Darklands of Tian Xia, much like those found elsewhere, are intermittently connected to each other and do not form a continuous network—travel from one cave complex through another often requires passage over the surface or through the deeper layers of the Darklands. The inhabitants of the Tian Xian regions of Nar-Voth include myceloids, who often raid the deeper caves of Sekamina, and a rumored nation of hobgoblins mirroring Kaoling on the surface.1


Seugathi inhabit Sekamina under Tian Xia.

The Sekamina under Tian Xia is home to a truly enormous amount of caves that are too numerous to fully categorise, but there are five larger regions more infamous than most:1

Underworld dragons also live here in large numbers, ruling realms between the five main nations and often manipulating their politics and workings. Some of the most well known of these dragons include Geojibom, Kou-Shaguang, and Zetzubio.1


The Vaults that lie beneath Tian Xia are even more mysterious and poorly explored than those beneath Avistan and northern Garund, but rumors and legends about them have percolated to the surface over time. What little is known of them speaks of realms of malformed giants, portals to nightmarish realms of the Outer Rifts, seas of living oil, and horrors from the Dark Tapestry waiting in their dark depths.1


Where the Darklands of Tian Xia are most different from their western counterparts are their inhabitants: these Darklands have no major populations of hryngars,2 drow,3 or deros. Instead, they are home to haunted clockworks, denizens of Leng, oni, and cave giants.1 Greedy underworld dragons are also known to inhabit the Darklands of Tian Xia, creating their labyrinth-like lairs in its benighted depths.4


Unsurprisingly for a region haunted by such violent creatures, the most popular deities they worship are evil. The two most prominent deities worshipped are Lamashtu, known as Grandmother Nightmare; and Lao Shu Po, often called the Old Rat Woman. Alongside these two gods, a range of fiendish demigods, such as demon lords and archdevils are also worshipped.1


For additional as-yet unincorporated sources about this subject, see the Meta page.

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 1.7 James Jacobs, et al. “Regions of the Dragon Empires” in Dragon Empires Gazetteer, 21. Paizo Inc., 2011
  2. Paizo referred to hryngars as duergar until the publication of Highhelm and the Sky King's Tomb Pathfinder Adventure Path.
  3. Paizo retroactively removed drow from the Pathfinder campaign setting as part of the Pathfinder Second Edition Remaster Project. A canon replacement for drow in this context might not exist. See Meta:Drow.
  4. Paizo Inc., et al. “Monsters A to Z” in Bestiary 3, 102–103. Paizo Inc., 2011