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Inhabitants

Scholars agree that the Cataclysm marked the beginning of an extinction event on Empyria, but whether that event is over or ongoing is still a matter of debate. The huge explosion physically shattered the Endlands and rained debris down over the other continents, instantly destroying most life close to the site. Shortly after, the mana that spread across the world permanently altered climate patterns in many parts of the world, further exterminating vulnerable species. Although records of pre-Cataclysm history are sparse, we know from scattered Telosian documents and fossil records that most of Empyria's largest land animals died out during this extinction.

Aside from evolutionary adaptations caused by changes in climate, the ongoing radiation from the background mana field doesn't seem to have had any major effects on surviving animals. The sole exception is humans, who are extremely vulnerable to physical alterations from magical influences, possibly due to their unique ability to manipulate mana.

Pets & Livestock

Due to human intervention, domestic animals generally survived the Cataclysm better than their wild counterparts. While it's rare to see wild creatures larger than a deer, sheep and oxen are still a common sight in outer city farmlands. Even so, certain meat animals (e.g. pigs) are rare and mostly associated with nobility in present day, and other species (e.g. horses) are extinct entirely.

Monsters generally ignore the existence of animals, so a well-trained pet can alert its owner of monster attacks without endangering itself. Thus, dogs - especially large working breeds - are especially popular among farmers and people who live in the wilderness. For people who live within the city walls, though, it is hard to find the space to properly take care of a pet; small animals that can be kept in cages or vivariums are the most common.

Magical Creatures

Shortly after the Cataclysm, animal-like beings made of mana began appearing in Empyria. Since most of these creatures share an inexplicable aggression toward humans, they are all collectively referred to as monsters.

Monsters that contain a high enough concentration of mana to become sapient are known as spirits. Unlike other monsters, they are generally friendly toward humans, and are often worshipped as gods.