Morus is a big place, about twice the size of our own world. It is bisected at the equator, however, by the so-called “Boiling Ocean”. These waters, which roil and seethe constantly, create strange currents and are home to deadly predators that make them all but impassable. Certainly, none who have braved them ever returned to tell the tale. As a result, the entire southern hemisphere of the world is mare incognita.
In Sigil, they’d sneer and call Morus a backwater - after all, it is simply one of a million inconspicuous Prime Material worlds with little to distinguish them. This has allowed it to develop relatively free from interference, as it rarely receives visitors either extraplanar or extraterrestrial.
Continents of Morus
The continent of Leng is considered the center of the world by many. It was inhabited by fey spirits and elementals in the early days of Morus, and their legacy lingers. It is only upon Leng that creatures such as elves, gnomes and halflings are found in significant numbers - where they have kingdoms and cities of their own. With seas of grinding ice to the north and the trackless waters of the Endless Ocean to the south, travellers from distant lands are often forced to cross Leng rather than sail around it, and it is not unusual to encounter people from many different places on the coastal ports.
The Sea of Pearls stretches to the west of Leng, an archipelago that spans thousands of miles. Although most of its islands are nominally colonies of the Arelonian Empire, its inhabitants are a free-spirited people. The Sea of Pearls is a place where piracy and brigandry run rampant, but also one of great profit and opportunity for merchant traders.
In the far west, Githas is a land of extremes and harsh climes - and is thought by some to be the birthplace of the oldest humans. It is a place of searing deserts, towering jungles and desolate steppes; one so steeped in history that it seems to pervade the very air. The call of ancient secrets buried in desert ruins draws many foreigners to Githas, even if the locals view the desecration of the ancient dead as the worst kind of sacrilege.
Although it occupies the same continent as Githas, Kyujitai is separated from it by the vast Karui Desert; contact between the two is by sea, not land. It is a place that has always been little understood and much romanticised by the people of Leng, though Kyujitai merchants and mercenaries are commonplace in Githas. Ships from Kyujitai occasionally visit the eastern shores of Leng, bringing with them expensive luxury goods, strange and foreign magics, and rare magical drugs, amongst other things. It has been said that, if it were not for the great distances between them, the immense empires of Kyujitai could most likely conquer Leng with ease.
In the north of Leng, the Ocean of Winter gives way to the icy shores of Nordmaar. Inhabited by Norsemen who claim to have been placed there by the Aesir themselves, it only becomes colder and more desolate as one comes nearer to the Frozen Waste. It’s said that only frost giants can survive in the planet’s bitter northern pole, which can freeze water to ice in moments.
Oceans of Morus
The Endless Ocean is named both for its size and its desolation. It covers the distance between Leng and Kyujitai, but also the vast uncharted areas to the south of Leng. Although there are many islands in the Endless Ocean, they are far apart and few have been charted. After all, there is little reason to do so: what is there to find but water without end, and eventually the Boiling Ocean?
The Ocean of Fate separates Githas from the Sea of Pearls; it is known as a gentle ocean, friendly to seafarers - and there are many small island nations dotted across it where one may resupply. Any traveller going between Leng and Githas must make a decision: do I risk the Sea of Pearls so that I may cross the Ocean of Fate, or do I brave the vastness of the Endless Ocean - a journey of more than twice the distance?
The Ocean of Winter separates Leng from Nordmaar, and is aptly named. It is a frigid water, infested by sea serpents and other monsters of the deep. To be plunged into its waters is almost certain death, and many would-be viking raiders have perished in its icy grip before they ever laid eyes on the shores of Leng. During the winter, it fills with great floes of ice and becomes almost impassable.
The Boiling Ocean encircles the vast globe of Morus at its equator, and represents a hard boundary between the world’s northern and southern hemispheres. No one know why it is so deadly, but a plethora of natural phenomena make it the most dangerous ocean on the planet. The water itself is hot, almost hot enough to cook - steam rises from it at all times. This alone can warp the hull of a ship and founder it. The heat also wreaks havoc with wind and currents, making it almost impossible to travel by sail. The fact that the waters and land alike are infested by enormous monsters is just icing on the cake. It is no great wonder that little to nothing is known of what lies beyond it.
The Outer Reaches
Even without leaving the Material Plane, there are immense expanses to cross and locations that only a handful have ever laid eyes on. The vast majority of adventures will take place in the “known world” - which contains plenty of mystery on its own - and even in those parts of southern Morus which are unknown to all. However, for those who break the shackles of an earthbound existence, there are still stranger spheres to which one may ascend.
Wintera is the smallest of the two moons of Morus, but appears larger as it is closer - a mere 170,000 miles away. Wintera appears to be pure white in color, with no visible blemishes or features of any kind. There are many theories and legends about the twin moons - and none capture the imagination so much as Wintera.
Whether these legends are true or not, one thing is true of Wintera - it is a moon that moves constantly in and out of the Material Plane. Unlike most moons, which change in phase as they orbit the world, Wintera is always fixed in place. As it waxes and wanes, it disappears into the Ethereal Plane and returns to the Material. Since it is in constant movement between the worlds of the physical and the spirit, it is a haven for beings of ethereal nature and a powerful gateway into the spirit world.
The surface of the moon is covered constantly by heavy snows - a consequence of a river that flows through it while it is in the spirit world. When it returns the Material, they turn to steam, then freeze and cause the clouds to fall to its surface as snow. There are strange shapes and structures on the surface of the moon which can be observed by powerful lenses - these are thought to be the homes of the fey beings which make their homes there.
Vaster but more remote, the red moon of Sanguina is 350,000 miles from Morus. The surface of Sanguina is bright red as a result of high concentrations of iron in the soil. It is known as the “blood moon” on Morus, and where Wintera is an object of mystery and wonder, Sanguina is commonly looked at with reverence and even fear. It is a focus of many cults and is popular with necromancers. As Sanguina waxes and wanes especially slowly - growing to fullness only once every 3 months - the full moon is often incorporated into rituals dealing with blood magic or spirit magic.
For a moon, Sanguina is unusually active. It has a breathable atmosphere, albeit a very thin one - produced by deep underground fungi that feed on rust and magical energy. The moon has immense iron deposits, both on the surface and deep underground. Frequent storms blow across the landscape, laced with tiny fragments of iron that can shred flesh like paper. Iron elementals also sporadically animate from the surface of the moon, roaming the surface and spilling the blood of those they find, to mix with the rusty earth.
A number of duergar have used pathways through the Plane of Elemental Earth to establish colonies beneath the surface, using it as a lucrative mine to extract large quantities of iron ore from. They frequently come into conflict with the iron elementals and the other unusual native denizens of Sanguina, whose caves are home to rust monsters and many types of animated fungi.
The Broken World
Lying 10 million miles from Morus on the way to Rimtar is a dense asteroid field of unusual size. This asteroid field - one of the most profitable regions for Rimtaran mining colonies - is the broken and shattered remains of a planet that was destroyed long ago. Little is known about what this planet was like before it was destroyed, or even how long ago it happened. However, there are the remnants of stone edifices on some asteroids which imply a distinctly illithid background. The Rimtaran dwaves have yet to uncover anything beyond ruined stonework in their operations.
40 million miles from Morus, on the “outer rim” of the star system, is the world is Rimtar. A small planet 1/8th the size of Morus, it is home to the system’s only spacefaring civilisation: the Moredi Dwarves. They are descended from the Ancestor Dwarves of Morus, who perished in ancient times in battle with what they called the “Ancient Masters”. While most of the Ancestors perished, and some chose to hide themselves beneath the earth, another group banded together and called upon the power of Moradin to lift their fortress from the surface of Morus and carry it safely into wildspace. They settled upon Rimtar and have called it home ever since.
As planets go, Rimtar is a fairly desolate one. While it has an airy atmosphere of its own, its surface is rocky and devoid of any vegetation at all. Air and water to the planet is supplied by portals into the Elemental Planes operated by Moredi priests, who specialise in such transportive magics. If these were to fail, the lack of plant life or naturally occuring water would render it into an uninhabitable rock. Most sadly for the dwarves, however, Rimtar is very poor in natural resources - iron, steel, gold and all the other things that the dwarves need to make their crafts.
This is why the Moredi’s journeys through wildspace did not end with their settlement on Rimtar. Mining expeditions leave the surface regularly on tiny “seed” spelljammers. They seek out asteroids, hollow them out and turn them into enormous spelljamming vessels. These self-sufficient colonies might dwell on the asteroid for decades, mining the minerals that Rimtar needs to survive - before finally returning to the “Great Mountainhome”.
The enormous asteroid-ships of Rimtar are far too big to land on Rimtar or Morus. There may be other reasons the Moredi have chosen not to return to the homeworld of their ancestors, but they are unclear.
A remote 100 million miles from Morus, the Sun is an enormous portal to the hottest, most radiant parts of the Plane of Elemental Fire. It bleeds fire and light constantly into the world, and is incredibly stable. How it came to be is totally unknown to those who benefit from it, and none have attempted any kind of serious investigation - for obvious reasons.
With powerful enough enchantments against the searing heat, it is possible that one could use the Sun as they would any other portal - as a way to enter the elemental planes.