Cerilia is home to many peoples, ranging from fierce orogs and goblins to graceful but deadly elves. The BIRTHRIGHT campaign allows players to choose from nine character races: Dwarves, Elves, Half-elves, Halflings, and five distinct human cultures (Anuireans, Brecht, Khinasi, Rjurik, and Vos).
Anuire, Brechtur, Khinasi, elves, and dwarves are the equivalent of Renaissance cultures. The Rjurik and orogs are the equivalent of Middle Ages cultures. The Vos, goblins, and gnolls possess Dark Ages technology.
Dwarves lived in the mountains of Cerilia long before humans came to the land. Over the years, the dwarven holds have chosen a defensive strategy, fortifying their approaches and retreating to their cities under the mountains whenever threatened. Dwarves have a fierce hatred of orogs (orclike beings), the result of uncounted wars fought under the earth.
The elves of Cerilia are a graceful but reclusive race, suspicious of humankind. Early in Cerilia's history they contested human settlement of Cerilia's vast forests, and a strong current of ill will towards the human nations still runs strong in the elven woods. There is only one race of Cerilian elves; they call themselves the Sidhelien (SHEE-lin). The Sidhelien hold court in deep, mist-wreathed vales in the darkest heart of the ancient Cerilian forests.
From time to time, a particularly handsome or beautiful human with courage and a gracious manner can walk among the Sidhelien and return unscathed. There have been humans who have been accepted as equals in the elven courts. Mortals quickly become lost in the elven spell; the years reel by in splendor and celebration, while the world outside comes to a halt or leaps centuries ahead. The mortal may return home to find that only a single night passed, or that a hundred years have passed him by. More often than not, his life runs out in an eye blink, like a moth dancing too close to the flame.
Half-elves are the children of these unusual men and women and their elven hosts. The elves regard them as Sidhelien, and they're welcome in elven society. Humans are more suspicious of half-elves, referring to them as bewitched or changelings; it's rare for half-elves to leave the elven woods.
The halflings aren't a numerous people, but they can be found almost anywhere humans live. Only a handful of humans know the secret of the halflings' origins: Once they dwelled in the spirit-world, a realm of faerie enchantment that existed parallel to Cerilia, but this realm was poisoned by the rise of the Shadow Lord and they fled to the daylight world to escape his power. In the early years after the battle of Mount Deismaar the Shadow World slowly became a darker, more foreboding place and the halflings left their home realm family by family, trickling into the human lands across all of Aebrynis.
Humans are the most numerous people of Cerilia, inhabiting every part of the continent. There are five human nationalities or cultures: the Anuireans, the Khinasi, the Brechtur, the Rjurik, and the Vos. A sixth nationality, the Masetians, became extinct long ago.