Races of the Phoenix Empire

From ORC Edinburgh RPG Wiki
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Imperial culture tends to divide the many races of the world into four categories, according to various, often arbitrary standards of appearance, ancestry, and population. Some races defy categorisation, through inherent strangeness or a lack of Imperial experience and dealings; others, particularly aquatic and subterranean races, are not detailed here for the simple reason that they have no significant presence in the Lost Province campaign. The lists accompanying each category are not exhaustive and cover only those races with entries in the Advanced Race Guide; in particular, the savage races can be taken to include many types of humanoid and monstrous humanoid: bugbears, giants, gnolls, harpies, lizardfolk, minotaurs, ogres, troglodytes, and trolls, among others.


The first Phoenix Emperor welcomed dwarves, elves, gnomes, and halflings alongside his human kin as the enlightened races of the Empire; the descendants of the enlightened races, most notably half-elves and half-orcs, were also accorded this status by his successors. Those who have enjoyed an especially coddled and insular upbringing might think of only these races as "people," regarding the other races with superstition at best and derision and hostility at worst. Of the non-human enlightened races, dwarves and elves possess racial homelands within the Empire, in the form of the Mountain and Forest Provinces, respectively; the populations of the other races are more evenly spread throughout the Empire, and none call any single land their historic home. Note that the enlightened races, or their members, seldom vocally describe themselves as "enlightened," with the implication that other races are unenlightened; to do so would be seen as crass in the extreme. Note also that the enlightened races are populous enough to contain distinct subraces or ethnic subgroups, detailed elsewhere.

Includes: dwarves, elves, gnomes, half-elves, half-orcs, halflings, humans.


Dwarves in the Empire often trace their origins to the Ti Shan Mountains, where their people are most numerous. On the whole, dwarves like the Empire, seeing their own long lives and enduring natures reflected in its traditions and institutions; humans, elves, and other races might be flighty, by dwarven standards, but the Phoenix Empire they have built together is anything but. In turn, dwarven craftsmanship and martial skill are respected throughout the Empire.


Elves primarily make their homes in the forests of Quinshen, and tend not to settle elsewhere in the Empire in large numbers; those encounters beyond the borders of the Forest Province might be abroad on business, or may have been taken with a periodic wanderlust characteristic of their race. Other races value elven insight and experience, but often find them detached and inscrutable; they can be whimsical and capricious, but an individual elf's long life can turn his perspective and influence into something that endures through multiple generations of humanity.


Gnomes are a race with a long history as traders and explorers; the other races all see something in gnomes with which they can feel a certain kinship, whether that means the fey heritage of an elf, a halfling's short stature and life spent surrounded by taller races, the adaptability and curiosity of a human, or a dwarf's deep and abiding love for the earth. At the same time, a gnome's individual peculiarities and intense nature can be off-putting to strangers. Within the Empire, gnomes may be found anywhere and everywhere, but rarely in especially large numbers.


Half-elves exist in something of an odd social space; with a few exceptions, individual half-elves are rarely born into a situation where their own parents can welcome them, but on the other hand, their parent races generally find half-elves pleasant and appealing, the traits each parent race finds off-putting in the other embodied less strongly in their mixed-race offspring. Half-elves may embrace one side of their heritage over the other, whether to fit in or to stand out.


Half-orcs are perhaps the least readily accepted of the enlightened races; others find it all too easy to miss or ignore the human side of their heritage and see only the orc. Many find themselves met with suspicion wherever they go, and spend their lives in a constant struggle to prove themselves. More half-orcs are born in the province of Goyun than anywhere else, although their treatment here is really no better than elsewhere. Regardless of natural inclinations or talents, few find themselves welcome in "respectable" careers.


Halflings were once broadly subjugated and enslaved during the Hundred Kingdoms period, just as humans and other races were during the preceding Age of Giants; though acknowledge for centuries now as an enlightened race, this history still colours halfling lives and their place in the Empire. Most have a knack for finding – or making – their own opportunities, even as other races ignore them, push them to the fringes, or pass them over for advancement. Halflings of noble blood or high office are rare indeed; those with ambition generally seek other paths to power.


Humans are the dominant race within the Empire; the Imperial Family and all but one of the Empire's greatest noble houses are of human stock, and in the majority of settlements, humans outnumber all the other races combined. This seems to hold true in neighbouring parts of the world, too; when the people of the Empire think of Algolapatans, Malkapurans, or Icewalkers, they usually think of the humans of those regions. Within the Empire, humanity has the largest number of distinct ethnic subgroups.


Also called the god-blooded races or "godbloods," these beings count among their ancestors gods, ghosts, elementals, and other creatures from beyond the Material Plane. Such potent blood is often fickle; it may be passed down through generations, dormant, hidden, and even unknown, only to emerge unexpectedly upon the birth of a new scion. Gods may also court mortals for their own ends, or interfere in an otherwise mortal coupling; godbloods who are themselves the children of two godbloods are relatively uncommon. Those of divine blood are generally too few in number to form any but the smallest racially-exclusive communities, and are often too striking in appearance or singular in ability to pass unnoticed among the other races. They tend to command attention and provoke strong reactions, and what begins as delight, respect, or fascination can quickly turn to fear, contempt, or hatred; divine forces, after all, take action out of displeasure just as often as pleasure. The outward appearance of divine blood is seen as a manifestation of a creature's soul, and thus, godbloods often face certain prejudices or expectations. The touch of the divine also often carries with it a long lifespan, further setting godbloods apart from their parents.

Includes: aasimars, dhampirs, ifrits, oreads, samsarans, sulis, sylphs, tieflings, undines.


Aasimars count benevolent deities or their servitors among their ancestors, but are not especially numerous; the good deities and outsiders are less likely than their evil counterparts to dally with mortals or deliberately sire offspring, and more able to recruit mortal followers in the form of clerics, paladins, and other divine spellcasters. The pressure of living up to their obvious divine heritage drives many aasimars into isolation or a life of wandering.


Dhampirs are also known as ghost-blooded or ghostbloods; many are born from strange liaisons between mortals and ghosts, though no small number are indeed sired by vampires. Often possessed of an alluring or beguiling manner at odds with their unnatural origins, dhampirs often feel compelled to suppress or disguise their undead heritage in order to better fit in with Imperial society; other become morticians, necromancers, or the priests of funereal gods.


Ifrits are among the most common godbloods in the Empire, but their passionate and fickle natures often put them at odds with orderly Imperial society. Other races find them alluring, but untrustworthy, and even a successful ifrit is more likely to achieve notoriety than fame. Many ifrits, in turn, regard the Empire as hidebound and stagnant, and are all too willing to express this in whatever manner earns them the greatest ire.


Oreads can be found in many of the same places and occupations as dwarves; though no dwarf would consider an oread to be a "half-dwarf," they have something of a knack for bridging the gaps in understanding between dwarves and humans, just as half-elves do for elves and humans. One common Imperial stereotype holds that oreads are ponderous and inflexible in their thinking; oreads generally find this insulting, but also know how to turn it to their advantage.


Samsarans are believed to embody purified souls that are close to escaping the cycle of reincarnation and transcending to a higher, immortal form of being. Even the most gentle or pleasant of samsarans can seem otherworldly and a little eerie, and most people are quite happy to leave samsarans to contemplate enlightenment in seclusion.


Sulis attract perhaps the least attention, both positive and negative, of all the divine races. Many show little outward sign of their supernatural heritage, and can pass for human until they manifest blasts of elemental energy. Scholars of the divine races consider the suli to be the "low-born" of their kind, with weak and muddled bloodlines. Some accept this view, desiring only to avoid the troubles that so many godbloods seem to attract; other reject it utterly, and set out to prove themselves no less potent or capable than any aasimar or ifrit.


Sylphs are rare, even by the standards of the divine races, and tend to be loners or outcasts. They tend to find Imperial society fascinating, but often overwhelming; most try to disguise themselves and avoid drawing attention to their elemental heritage. Some eschew Imperial society altogether for a life of isolation and contemplation.


Tieflings are generally treated with a mixture of pity and mistrust; it is true that no-one asked to be born a tiefling, but it is equally true that tieflings seem drawn to the path of iniquity and wickedness. Imperial society tends to deny tieflings access to positions of authority, and a noble or bureaucrat who associates closely with a tiefling is likely to find his own advancement blocked, too. Those who cannot disguise their fiendish heritage must find other roads to power.


Undines are drawn to the Island, Lake, and River Provinces, and tend not to involve themselves in Imperial politics or the affairs of outsiders. In the regions where they congregate, others often take particular care not to offend them, believing that powerful water spirits watch over their undine children, ready to unleash disaster upon their enemies.


These races blend human (or, at least, humanoid) and animal traits – many of them do not take kindly to being called or thought of as "mongrel" or hybrid creatures. Imperial culture generally holds that when a member of one of the enlightened races commits some transgression or moral failing, that person's soul reincarnates into one of the mongrel races in his next life, in a form that best embodies his previous life's failings. Thus, certain stereotypes about each race are common in the Empire. Some members of the mongrel races turn these stereotypes to their advantage; others spend their whole lives striving to defy Imperial cultural mores and expectations, while yet others do their best to ignore them and live their lives in peace. Bearing, dress, and company can do much to dispel this bias; such a person's animal traits might instead be taken as evidence of a powerful spirit's blessing or bloodline. Within the Empire, these races tend to build their own, small communities, though a patient and determined few choose to live among the other races, especially in larger and more cosmopolitan settlements.

Includes: catfolk, gripplis, kitsune, nagaji, ratfolk, tengus, vanaras.


Catfolk are seen as the reincarnations of those who devoted their lives to indolent pleasures. Imperial culture does not regard drink, drugs, or sex as inherently immoral or destructive, but frowns on those who seem to aspire only to sating their appetites for these base pleasures. Imperial superstition holds that catfolk should eschew immediate gratification for greater, nobler, and longer-lasting satisfaction and achievement.


Gripplis are believed to embody the flaw of duty without virtue; in their past lives, they placed the dictates of duty and tradition above the virtues that inspired those duties and traditions in the first place. Gripplis are thus seen as obeying the letter of the law without giving thought to its spirit or intent, as living lives ruled by habit and tradition. Imperial superstition holds that gripplis should seek to innovate, to improve, and to explore.


Kitsune are regarded as reincarnations of those who found profit in misfortune; while they did not set out to hurt others, they saw another's hurt as opportunity to advance themselves rather than to help. Kitsune are thus seen as unreliable, though not so untrustworthy as to turn against friends and allies. Imperial superstition holds that a kitsune's life will be filled with temptation to turn the suffering of others to their own advantage.


Nagaji are believed to embody the flaw of impious servitude; in their past lives, they willingly served evil masters, ignoring their misdeeds, or else they turned their service of upstanding masters to corrupt and wicked ends. Nagaji are thus regarded as being prone to "falling in with a bad crowd;" they may find themselves in service to bad people, or might abuse authority that is entrusted to them. Imperial superstition holds that nagaji should seek the redemption of their souls through honest service to a virtuous master.


Ratfolk are seen as the reincarnations of those who were distracted by petty thoughts, and set aside the responsibilities and privileges of their station. They are regarded as small-minded, lacking in ambition, overly fixated upon small details, and prone to self-sabotaging grudges. Imperial superstition holds that ratfolk should like austere lives, free from distractions, so that they might focus better on lofty aspirations and ideals.


Tengus are regarded as the reincarnations of those who lived without duty, serving only themselves. Shiftless vagrants, wastrels who squander their money and sire children to whom they can leave no inheritance, and mercenaries who serve both sides in a conflict can all look forward to reincarnation as tengus. Imperial superstition holds that tengu souls can be redeemed through dutiful service and consistent self-sacrifice.


Vanaras are believed, in their past lives, to have left works unfinished, not through meeting an early or unexpected end but through their own fickle nature and lack of discipline. Their souls are not aggrieved by this, as might lead to them lingering on as ghosts; their reincarnation as vanaras reflects the judgement of a greater power, rather than any guilt, regret, or frustration of their own. Imperial superstition holds that vanaras should strive to complete all that they begin, and to leave a lasting mark upon the world.


These races are widely regarded as barbarians and monsters. Those which maintain a presence within Imperial borders usually do so through a combination of stealth and violence, defying efforts to drive out or destroy them. Prejudice against such creatures is usually well-grounded in centuries of conflict and atrocity, but individual members of these races, usually those who leave their cultures behind as exiles or runaways, may find a place for themselves in Imperial society. Strangers are likely to be initially wary towards members of one of these races, although one's choice of companions can go a long way towards making a better first impression.

Includes: goblins, hobgoblins, kobolds, orcs.


Goblins are perhaps the least likely of the savage races to find a place in Imperial society. Most seem utterly unable to rein in their anarchic tendencies and voracious appetites, and other races regard their settlements as infestations, to be exterminated quickly and thoroughly. Ambitious goblins generally seek to dominate their own tribes rather than turning to adventure and mingling with other races, and those who show unseemly sympathies for non-goblins are likely to be killed and devoured in short order.


Hobgoblins are brutal, militaristic, and ruthless, and those hobgoblins who abandon their kin for the adventuring life or even to seek a place in Imperial society tend to be those who lack either the discipline or the strength to thrive in such a harsh environment. Unfortunately, this means that such "renegade" hobgoblins tend to be the most unruly, cunning, or craven of their kind. Most turn to mercenary work of one sort or another, having little patience or respect for professions that, in hobgoblin society, would be carried out by servants or slaves.


Kobolds possess a racial inferiority complex that makes any attempt at dealing with other races a challenge. They tend to be high-strung and paranoid, constantly alert for insults and inequitable treatment that betrays the contempt in which, they are convinced, all others hold them. In the Thousand Scale Kingdoms, kobolds often form a slave or labourer caste at the very bottom of the social order, seeing no reward for their endless toil; those not born to this life, in the Empire or elsewhere, are often convinced that behind the honeyed words of the larger races lie sharp blades or heavy chains.


Orcs are crude and violent, and orcish adventurers tend to be outcasts who left orcish society behind for one of two reasons. Some aspire to rise above bullying and violent domination as a way of life; others abandon their tribes after years spent at the bottom of the pecking order without hope of advancement. Though most orcs deride non-orcish society as soft and non-orcs as weaklings, they appreciate the comforts and luxuries that the Empire creates, and some take remarkably well to a life as part of that Empire rather than one spend raiding and looting it.


A few races defy categorisation, often because they are too rare, mysterious, or reclusive for any kind of outside cultural consensus to have been reached. Many people may never have seen a character of one of these races before; they may have heard stories of questionable accuracy that fill them with fear or wonder upon such an encounter.

Includes: changelings, fetchlings, strix, vishkanyas, wayangs.


Several of the races listed in the Advanced Race Guide are unsuitable for play in the Lost Province campaign. Generally these are races that depend on significant marine or underground environments for survival or playability.

Includes: drow, duergar, gillmen, merfolk, svirfneblin.

Core Races: Ethnic Subgroups

To an outsiders eyes, the people of the Phoenix Empire might appear largely alike; dark hair, skin tones ranging from pale olive to dusky bronze, and large, dark eyes dominate. Within the Empire's most populous races, though – dwarves, elves, gnomes, halflings, and humans – there exist several distinct ethnic subgroups. The people of those nearby kingdoms most likely to have contact with the Empire – Algolapata, Malkapur, and the land of the Icewalkers – are likewise ethnically distinct from the various people of Jaoshen.

Half-elves and half-orcs do not possess their own ethnic subgroups. Half-elves are generally considered to embody the best features of both parent races, while orcish blood has an unfortunate tendency to emphasise the coarsest features of a half-orc's human heritage.

Characters of any race may possess a different appearance and hail from a different ethnic and cultural background, but such unusual foreigners most likely possess the Stranger in a Strange Land campaign trait.

Dwarven Ethic Subgroups


The Gon-Lis make up the bulk of the dwarven population of the Empire, especially those who travel or dwell beyond the Ti Shan Mountains. Their skin tends to be quite dark, ranging from tan or bronze to a leathery brown, and common eye colours include brown, black, and grey. Most have black or dark brown hair, which tends to be thick and curly; it is not uncommon for a Gon-Li to find his hair turning grey when he is barely into his middle years, though white hair and outright baldness are rare. Men and women alike wear their hair (and in the case of men, their beards) long, often thickly braided or strung with beads.


Less populous than the Gon-Lis, the Gon-Tens are a deep-dwelling people who venture to the surface world and mingle with other races less often than their Gon-Li cousins. Gon-Tens are hairless, and tend to be a little shorter and broader than other dwarves, with grey or brown skin, often mottled or marbled, and gold, red, or dark grey eyes. Lacking hair or beards to braid, men and women alike tend towards cosmetic scarification of the cheeks, scalp, and arms (though never the hands). They are readily mistaken for oreads.

Elven Ethnic Subgroups


All elves tend to be tall and slender by human standards, but the Kwae-Luns embody these traits more than most. With smooth features, fair skin, hair that is either silver-white or an intense blue-black or green-black, and dark, piercing eyes, they can seem at once sombre and ethereal. Kwae-Luns seem drawn towards settled lives, with an almost ritualistic fervour for routine and habit, and few welcome intrusions or disruptions in their carefully ordered worlds.


The Kwae-Songs are not so tall as their Kwae-Lun cousins, and tend towards hard-bodied, wiry builds. Skin colours include various tones of red-tinted brown and green-tinted olive, and their large, intense eyes may be amber, brown, green, or red. Many have black or dark brown hair, but lighter shades of brown as well as auburn and even green are not uncommon. As a people, Kwae-Songs are more outgoing than other elves, quick to display emotion and relatively tolerant of other races.

Halfling Ethnic Subgroups


The Jao-La ethnic subgroup is notable not merely for the striking appearance of the Jao-La themselves, but also for the fact that it crosses racial lines; both halfling and human Jao-Las exist, and Jao-La humans and halflings are interfertile, whereas humans and halflings of any other ethnic subgroup are not. Jao-Las typically have vibrant eye colours, including grey, gold, amber, and violet. Aside from their eyelashes, they are completely hairless. Jao-La skin tones range from very fair to pale, but the most distinctive feature of the Jao-Las is the unique pattern of black marks and patches each bears on his or her skin. Ranging in size from no bigger than a thumbnail to a handspan or more across, a Jao-La's 'spots' are usually circular or ellipsoid, naturally occuring in symmetrical patterns.

These distinctive traits are less pronounced in the children of Jao-Las and non-Jao-Las, whose 'spots' are less regular in shape, size, and pattern, and less solidly black. A half-Jao-La may grow thin hair, while a person of less than one-eighth Jao-La heritage shows no noticeable Jao-La traits at all; on the other hand, the child of a Jao-La and a half-Jao-La is indistinguishable from a full-blooded Jao-La. Couplings between halfling and human Jao-Las produce offspring of the mother's race but some of the father's traits; the child of a halfling mother and a human father is a tall halfling, while the child of a human mother and a halfling father is a short (even by Jao-La standards) human. Optionally, a Jao-La halfling with a human father may roll 1d4+4 as a modifier die when randomly determining height and weight. The Empire's Jao-La population is concentrated in the west, especially the Lake Province. Derogatory nicknames for Jao-Las include "spotties" and "swampies."


The populous Myeo-Las are the 'common' halflings of the Phoenix Empire, and are spread throughout all of the Eight Provinces. Myeo-La skin tones range from a dusky olive to a dark tan, with dark brown or black hair that may be straight or naturally curly, and slightly pointed ears. Common eye colours include grey, brown, almond, and black. Eastern and northern Myeo-Las tend to have tufts of thick, curly hair on the tops of their feet; southern and western Myeo-Las tend not to. Others may refer to these Myeo-La populations as "hairfeets" and "mudfeets" respectively; both terms are considered slurs.

Gnomish Ethnic Subgroups


The Tang-Chul population is concentrated in the Empire's Mountain and Highland Provinces, though wanderlust might bring the Tang-Chuls to any corner of the Empire. Tang-Chuls tend to be tall (for gnomes) and wiry, with complexions covering the range of dusky, olive, and tan skin tones common to other races of the empire, and dark hair in shades of brown, black, deep blue, and muted green. A Tang-Chul's eyes resemble those of an elf, almost entirely filled by dark pupils, most often brown, blue, or green.


Few races or ethnic groups in the Empire show so much variety as the diminutive Tang-Sings. A Tang-Sing's hair might be brown, auburn, gold, red, green, or even violet, and it is not uncommon for a gnome with hair of a 'plainer' colour to display streaks of a more intense shade. Flesh tones range from earthy brown, through shades of tan and olive, to pale green and ruddy pink. Tang-Sings have human-like eyes, though they tend to be large and expressive, with colours ranging from black, brown, and hazel to blue, green, and purple.

Human Ethnic Subgroups


The dominant ethnic group of the Empire's central provinces, the Jao-Dans are a tall and fair-skinned people by Imperial standards. Most have dark, straight hair, ranging from very dark brown through black to blue-black, but a small number – approximately one in twenty – have hair of a strikingly different colour, either a rich gold or an intense red. This trait does not seem to obey any laws of heredity and is common enough that it is never taken as evidence of infidelity; everyone has an aunt, an uncle by marriage, or a third cousin twice removed whose bright hair is 'proof' that the trait runs in the family. Jao-Dans seem to resist the loss or greying of hair better than other groups, but Jao-Dan men generally have difficulty growing facial hair. Most have brown, black, or hazel eyes, though blue or grey eyes (if dark-haired) and green eyes (if bright-haired) are not unheard of.


The pale-skinned, black-spotted Jao-Las are detailed under halfling ethnic subgroups, above. Jao-La humans are lithe pygmies by human standards: when randomly determining a Jao-La's height and weight, reduce base height by 1 foot for both men and women; reduce base weight by 65 pounds for men, 40 pounds for women; and roll 2d6 as modifier dice with a weight multiplier of x3. Optionally, a Jao-La human with a halfling father may roll 1d6 as a modifier die; a human with one Jao-La and one non-Jao-La parent may be taller and heavier than suggested here. Physical traits other than height and weight are as detailed above under halfling ethnic subgroups, above; Jao-La characters are otherwise identical to other humans.


The Jao-Sings are native to the western and southern lands of the Empire, particularly its coastal regions and islands. On average, they are the shortest and most slender of the human ethnic groups of the Empire, with dark olive or tan skin and dark brown or black hair; a Jao-Sing's skin or hair may also be tinged with red, gold, or green. Common eye colours include brown, black, and green. Among Jao-Sing men, it is common for doctors, labourers, and soldiers to go shaven-headed, and any man may shave his head at a point of significant change in his life (for example, coming of age, appointment to a new position, or marriage) as a symbolic act of starting anew.


The Jao-Yuns are the prevalent ethnic group in the northern and eastern Empire. They are the darkest of the Empire's major ethnic subgroups, with thick, almost universally black or blue-black hair and swarthy complexions. As well as the black or brown eyes common to most of the Empire's people, blue and grey eyes appear frequently among the Jao-Yuns; they tend to have heavy brows, deep-set eyes, and broad noses, though not to the extent suggested by the grotesque caricatures of Jao-Yuns popular in pre-Imperial art. Men seldom wear their hair past the neck and often cultivate impressively thick beards and moustaches, while women tend to wear their hair long and simply braided.


The people of the Phoenix Empire tend to lump the various different nationalities and ethnicities of the Algolapatans together into a single category; to Imperial eyes, different subgroups of Algolapatans are more alike than unalike. On the whole, they are a tall, lean, and dark-skinned people, with complexions ranging from deep brown to coal black. Most have jet-black hair with a wiry, curly, or frizzy texture, and many Algolapatans of both sexes crop their hair short or shave their heads, though the wealthy may grow out, straighten, and elaborately style their hair. Gold and emeralds are major sources and signifiers of wealth in Algolapata, and yellow and green are thus traditionally worn by the rich and powerful. Lightweight fabrics and minimalist garments that would be scandalous in the Empire are common in Algolapata's warmer northern climate.


Natives of the frigid lands south and east of the Empire, the Icewalkers are a race of hardy barbarians, known as skilled hunters who turn, in tough times, to raiding the settled lands. Icewalkers are usually stocky, with skin tones ranging from greyish tan to ash grey, and coarse hair that ranges from white, through various shades of grey and blue-grey, to inky black. Common eye colours include black, brown, grey, and amber. In their homeland, Icewalkers typically wear heavy clothing of leather and fur, particularly thick, hooded coats; those that travel further north tend not to wear so many layers, but still prefer leather, hide, or fur clothing.


The people of Malkapur have skin tones ranging from deep tan to dark brown, often with a ruddy cast that the people of the Empire describe as reddish or coppery. Hair colours range from dark brown to an inky blue-black, while eye colours include brown, black, deep red, and dark gold. Tattoos, normally consisting of intricate patterns in black or dark red, are common, and wealthy Malkapurans often wear significant amounts of gold jewellery. The lower classes tend to wear plain, light-coloured clothing, with extravagant garments in red, orange, and purple commonly serving as an indicator of wealth and status.