There are many planes nestled around the material plane. The Elemental Planes we’ve already covered. Besides those, the most well known is Faerie or the Feywild. Some cosmologies include a plane of shadow and an ethereal plane as well. What follows are some lesser known planes in the same region, especially the ones close to Faerie (The most interesting extraplanar adventure setting, in my opinion) .
This is part of my celebratory 100 planes for my 100th post. If you want more lesser known extraplanar locations, there will be more all week!
- Part One (1-20): The Elements
- Part Two (21-39): Small Worlds
- Part Three (40-60): Inner Planes
- Part Four (61-80): Heavenly Realms
- Part Five (81-101): Miscellaneous
The Psychic Planes
There are many things that are core to the mortal experience with no physical reality. Virtues and vices. Concepts. Much like the elemental planes, there is a Psychic Plane that contains the elemental essence of the mind. It has dozens of subplanes, some of which are listed here. All of them are shaped by the collective thoughts of mortal kind, so they change with cultures and with ages. If you visit them, you may notice them being subtly shaped by your own thoughts, giving them a shifting and dreamlike quality.
40. Honor. A plane of rolling green hills and shining white castles. Most residents are knights, monks, priests, and others who live by strict codes. Here you cannot tell a lie, and you cannot break a promise. This is not like the technical rules of some fey, no deception at all is possible.
The entire legal and governmental system is extremely simple. One need only swear to follow the code. In the rare case someone is suspected of a nefarious deed, usually of using magic to circumvent the code, they only need be asked what they’ve done (After dispelling whatever magic they used to allow deception)
41. Deception. A plane of docks, leering shanty houses, and underground dens. In contrast to Honor, everything here must be deception. And not in a simple way. If it was simply opposite day rules, a functional truth could be established. No, everything here must be intended to deceive, even if that includes speaking the literal truth.
Society is obviously deeply non-functional. People are solitary by necessity, and use the threat of force whenever they must deal with others. Despite it all, there are functional relationships here. They rely on peace with the possibility of betrayal. As you might imagine, people here are not as bothered by lies and betrayal as we might be.
42. Love. Perpetually in a warm springtime, this plane consists of cozy homes nestled together on a series of stacked terraces. You have a beautiful view of fields of flowers from almost anywhere, and the complex interlocking of balconies and archways creates thousands of private nooks and crannies.
It is the perfect environment to find and grow love of any kind. Romantic, platonic, familial. There are plazas for any kind of activity, such as games and sports, to help people meet. The pinnacle of the terraces is a difficult climb, likely to bring climbers together.
Love strengthens people here. The more love you feel for the people near you, the stronger you get. You can gain abilities like flight, telekinesis, and telepathy with your loved ones. Some people even start to glow with an internal fire. Of course, this can strengthen feelings of jealousy, a frequent companion to love. While lovely, this is not a flawless paradise.
43. Hatred. Frequently mistaken for one of the hells, this nightmare plane is a wide open field of red grass. The residents are in a constant all out war against one another. Being a more psychic than physical place, they reform eventually, in a twisted version of valhalla. Sometimes they form allegiances, fighting as two or three sides in a war. Other times it is private battles fought covertly. It is hard to be here long without being consumed by the unyielding malice.
44. Curiosity and Invention. A twin plane. A giant workshop in the middle of an ever shifting labyrinth. The labyrinth contains a wealth of riches, as well as rare materials useful to inventors. The inventors of the workshop hold expeditions to explore the labyrinth and discover its mysteries. Of course, the mystery is innate and implacable, there will never be a final reveal.
Though this is a good place to find mechanical marvels, many of the inventions have little use beyond having been extremely difficult to make. Some are just elaborate art pieces that move. One is a device that can teleport croissants. It’s very hit or miss.
45. Struggle and Fulfillment. A daunting mountain. There is no way into the plane except at the very bottom. There is no way up the mountain except on foot and the path up the mountain is fraught with challenge.
There are seven gates along the way, each with a progressively heavier stone. You’re not forced to pick them up, but you will be denied access to the summit without them. Also, several of the obstacles, like swaying bridges, are designed to drop you far down the mountain if you fall.
At the summit, if you gain entry, is a simple stone plaza. There are a few benches. People are talking and laughing. The view from the mountaintop is beautiful. Those few who have gained entry illicitly are met with great disappointment, but those who made the trek recommend it to anyone.
46. Plane of Madness. A plane that will slowly drive you mad. It varies from area to area, but a common theme is that it’s impossible to sleep. Arrhythmic and upsetting noises. Endless lakes too deep to sit in. Constantly shifting ground. There are other aggravators, like shifting images in the corner of your eye, or voices just too soft to understand.
The plane prevents any of this from killing you, so the residents are largely just subject to torment until they can escape or be rescued. Despite common conception, you’re in little danger from anything on the plane, very few people here could muster the will to violence.
47. Anticipation, or The Waiting Plane, or the Thursday Afternoon Plane. It goes by many names. This plane consists of a small area next to a road. The road goes nowhere. Whatever you were about to do, it will be postponed. You have to wait here a bit, before you can continue on your journey.
Others will be waiting too. They’ll look up when you arrive, but they’re not waiting for you. Maybe they are. But probably not.
This is not a plane of torment. The thing you’re waiting for will eventually come. Your proverbial bus will come, to continue on your journey. But you can’t know how long. Some people have been here ages. Some people are only here a few minutes. They say that makes it worse, that it could be any minute.
48. Dream. On the border of the Psychic Plane and Faerie. The most real and physical of the psychic planes, and probably the most significant plane on this list. This is where mortal minds go when they’re dreaming. It is obviously a highly morphic plane, as just about any location, no matter how possible or sensical, can appear. The Dreamhalls are one of the only stable locations, where the different dreams congregate.
Even more so than Faerie, time has no meaning here. The Dream of Wealth might be lounging in the Dreamhalls preparing to go to work, while from a mortal perspective there are thousands of people experiencing that dream.
If you come here as your waking self, a lot of stuff will be nonsensical. The veil of dreams helps contextualize a lot of signs and symbols your waking mind cannot comprehend. The Dreamhalls themselves are fairly stable, and the Dreams themselves are only somewhat strange when they’re not at work. Unless you’re seeking a particular dreamer, it’s best to stay there.
49. The Gilded Cage. A subrealm of dream, where lucid dreamers are contained so that they don’t realize that their minds are in a different plane. It is a small plane, just an empty sphere when unoccupied. It’s prisoner is always held exactly in its center, but otherwise is fully under the control of their mind. Imagine a combination of a holodeck and a prison.
A complex temporal anomaly allows one cell to hold thousands of simultaneous dreamers. The Moonmist Warden watches over the cell, and can shift the anomaly to observe any individual dreamer.
Though mortals will only ever interact with this prison as they dream, they are not the only inmates. Strange monsters, rogue and retired dreams, and prisoners that could escape from any prison if they ever discovered their own imprisonment.
The living planes. Though most places have a guardian spirit or local god, these finite planes are a single conscious being. The material substance of the place itself has personhood. Some can reshape themselves completely, but most are constrained as any organism is. A tree could wrap you in its boughs or even walk on its roots, but not flow like water, for example.
50. The Great White. A great beast that breaches through planar boundaries like a whale through water. It is classified as a plane of its own because its interior and exterior don’t match. The exterior morphs in size and shape to adapt to new planes or interplanes, but the inside holds mostly constant.
The easiest way to end up here is to be eaten by mistake. About a dozen others have met the same fate and remain alive. They all live in the stomach inside a castle that the beast swallowed by accident. The lower floor is flooded, but there is plenty of space in the upper floors. They survive by cultivating mushrooms and dredging for the odd cow or sheep that gets swallowed.
51. The Redroot Forest. A grove of trees about a mile in diameter, stuck in permanent twilight. The veins of the green leaves are a striking crimson, giving a look reminiscent of autumn evenings. The plane is not forthcoming with its sentience, and there are no people or animals here that might alert you to that fact. In fact, there is little of interest on the surface.
If you were to dig down however, you would discover the truth. Catatonic people tangled up in the roots, pale as their blood is siphoned up into the trees. Below them, a bedrock of skulls being ground to dust. This plane is a vampire, waiting for someone to be alone or vulnerable, and then pulling them under the ground.
Rumors say that there is a permanent portal to this place inside a vampire king’s castle. The king feeds people to the forest in exchange for the ancient wisdom of the plane.
52. Iv of the Desperate Plea. One of the truly morphic genus loci, as well as the most helpful. If someone shows up here, and is in desperate need, the plane will take the form they need. Sometimes as simple as a warm bed and a full table. Sometimes as complicated as planar portals to gather a council of great minds. It trends towards peaceful and non-interventionist solutions.
The plane itself is not very talkative. It will only reveal its sentience if that is necessary for the aid given. It communicates via scroll, with new writing appearing on the page as you speak.
If you’re not in need of aid, or the plane determines your cause is unjust, it appears as a blank corridor with a portal to somewhere else at the end.
53. The Caretaker. Most people love animals. This person just happens not to be human. Or humanoid. The Caretaker is both sanctuary and caretaker for animals. It can reach out into the material plane to pull in animals that need caring for. Typically ones that have been harmed by mortal encroachment on habitats.
The realm is huge for a demiplane, and is built with a huge number of biomes blending into each other. Predators tend to have their own private enclosure, surrounded by high rocks. The Caretaker can produce plenty of food, and can shift the environment for a new animal, but can only make natural environments.
Mortals are welcome to visit, and there’s a small plateau near the center that is as suitable for humans as it can manage. You can stay and look, as long as you don’t harm any animals. If you do, you’ll be stuck in a predator enclosure designed to prevent your escape. Humans are just another animal, after all.
54. The Magnificent Mansion. This plane loves a good party. All it really wants is to become the best party venue in the multiverse. To this end, it wanders around the material plane, sprouting up into towns and cities whenever they’re ripe for a good party. The house expresses itself in the form of a team of masked butlers, which can even venture out of the house to advertise the party.
The house also sends its butlery fingers out into the world to do research. This is how it knows when to throw a party, and how it knows what will impress the locals. The interior (and exterior facade) can shift wildly, but only when there’s no one in the house.
The Holiday Planes
Faerie is dotted with subplanes and demiplanes, many of which are deeply tied to the turning of the seasons and the passing of the year. Just as summer and winter become places in Faerie, so too do yearly festivals and celebrations. These realms are constantly locked in this holiday, but also do the behind the scenes work for the earthly version.
As temporal rather than physical locations, the portals to these realms only exist on the day in question (Though there are always passages through timeless faerie). If you leave the realm via a portal, you will always arrive on one of these holidays.
55. Fools Day. A holiday of jovial pranks and lies. This plane is possibly the most chaotic place outside of the abyss of chaos itself. Everything here is a deception, though a lighthearted one.
The door? It’s a wall, the real door is hidden in that plinth over there. This fancy dinner? The food is painted rocks, but the silverware and the plate are made of chocolate. The giant red X on the floor? Harmless, but the space next to it has a pit trap.
Physics here makes it difficult to harm anyone. You can be thrown half a mile into a brick wall and bounce off. As long as you assume the opposite of whatever anyone says, play into the jokes, and perhaps pull a few of your own, you’ll do just fine here.
56. Beltane. The beginning of summer and a time for celebration. At the center of this realm is the biggest bonfire you’ve ever seen. Three hundred feet tall and burning eternally, surrounded by rolicking dancers. Hundreds of other signal fires dot the nighttime woods of this plane, each with their own small party.
Though there is wine aplenty, the best way to ingratiate yourself to the locals is to bring some of your own to share. As one might expect from a huge group of drunk spring and summer fey, the eternal festival gets very raunchy. If you’re not here for that, best stick near the fires.
57. Harvest. Though it varies from place to place and year to year, this holiday centers around the fall equinox. The final push to harvest crops and settle in for the cold months to come. A slightly more deferential and spiritual affair than the spring and summer festivals, but still a festival.
This plane is perpetually in the moment after the great harvest ends. There are mountains of food, mostly of the fall crop varieties. The feast tables are a mile long, and the food never runs dry. Mead and ale barrels the size of warships dominate the long halls. All you need do is offer a prayer of thanks, and you’ll be given a lifetime’s worth of food.
Outside the halls is a gorgeous autumnal scene. While they’re not ensuring (or preventing) bountiful harvests on earth, the fey here are either appreciating the beauty or feasing.
58. All Hallow’s Eve. The dawn of winter brings the lands of the dead to their nadir over mortal realms. People walk around in monster masks while monsters walk around in people masks.
Everyone in this realm wears a mask, and your social position is based entirely on your mask. Trade masks with the king, and now you are the king. It is always on the edge of fall here, right before the first snowfall.
59. Yule. The solstice, and the time of gifts. The realm consists of a huge town and a large mountain. In the town, fey spirits under the eye of the Yulefather prepare gifts for the people of the world. On the mountain, the Krampus prepares to exact its punishments on the wicked.
The other residents of the town are constantly feasting fey, in an eternal festival of camaraderie and joy. It is said that not a moment has passed here where no one was singing.
60. Revolution. New nations spring from violent usurpations of the nations that came before them. Most nations have a holiday, an independence day or a day of revolution. Those combined revolutionary fervours coalesce here.
Because the wellspring is a huge number of often contradictory holidays, the fey here don’t have a solid philosophical grounding. They have a revolution, institute new leaders and new rules, throw an enormous party, then start all over again.