Prime Elemental Planes
The Prime Elemental Planes are planes of existence consisting of pure elements, one for each prime element: Earth, Fire, Air, Water. These planes may resemble our own world in some ways, but they are far more dangerous than they appear. Most realms outside our own world are too hazardous to explore, but very masterful or foolish mages walk the elemental planes. There is no stigma for making portals to the elemental planes. However, if this is not done very carefully it is possible to flood an area with elemental energy, such as when The Amber Flame society of House Illistim almost burned down the city.
It is thought the world is surrounded in a dimensional veil separating overlapping worlds, which shift over the ages moving each "veil" around. When these planes intersect each other they can allow raw power to seep through, which in the case of the elemental planes is the source of elementals in our world. These elemental nexuses seem drawn to places of intense elemental activity and change creatures.
The Elemental Planes
The Prime Elemental Planes include the following elements, with the other elements being composites of these four:
- The Elemental Plane of Fire
- The Elemental Plane of Water
- The Elemental Plane of Earth
- The Elemental Plane of Air
Other potential pure elements such as Light, Aether, Nether, and so on are not mentioned.
The Elemental Confluence is an interplanar elemental nexus writ large, the elemental planes converging on each other in a huge ribbon of energy. When it came too near Elanthia and was halted by Alusius, it merged with the local fabric of reality forming wandering rifts. These points of elemental instability can be forced through into the corresponding elemental plane at the nexus. Composite elementals are vastly more common in the Confluence than the wilds as a result. It is rare for such intersections to happen near each other, which makes composite elementals rare, and their Great Elementals non-existent.
Behind the Scenes
The "Prime Material Plane" is the world in Dungeons & Dragons, which has pure elemental planes. In the Shadow World setting there were parallel material planes that were almost impossible to access, as well as higher and lower planes "of the essence" on an axis of order to chaos. It has "demons of the essence" who are "elemental demons", which are distinct in concept from elementals. Rolemaster books have pure elemental planes as well from which extraplanar elementals can be summoned. In this framework the "crude material" plane is lower quality, not constituted of high elemental material.
- "Elementals: Overview" by Lords Ulithian Feras and Isymir Ril-Galad
- Elemental Planes in DragonRealms (electricity is considered its own element, along with aether)
- Elemental Planes in Shadow World (this third-party companion is partly off-canon)
- Elemental Planes in Dungeons & Dragons (the inner most planes)