Achaeans are the Men of the Achaean Empire, whose great kingdoms span all the way from parts of Northrim nearly into Kemhet in the South. Thus, they are often called "Imperials" by outsiders. They are incredibly skilled warriors with battle prowess that has won them their sprawling empire, but they are also known for their ancient culture and beautiful works of art.
A mixture of many different peoples from vast regions of the West, Achaeans can hardly be identified as one 'race' by appearance alone. Most are fair skinned with brownish hair, but blond, red, and black hair are not uncommon, and some are tanned or olive-skinned, with eye color varying just as widely. In general, lighter complexions are more common in the northern regions and darker complexions in the south. They also range widely in height, with those in the northern regions generally taller than those from the south.
There are numerous sub-cultures within the limits of the Achaean Empire, as it includes such vast tracts of land. Generally speaking, the Achaean culture is summarized in the main Achaean Empire article. The cultures of each kingdom vary at least slightly here and there, however. For instance, the men from the Northwest, such as Illikon, generally do not feel bound by the same ancient rules and customs as do Imperials from the more southern regions, allowing such things as female knights; thus, Achaeans from the very civilized Imperial Heartland call Northwesterners "barbarians," almost like the Northerners themselves.
Achaeans worship the pantheon of gods known as the Olympians, gods that dwell on Mount Olympos. They are one of the somewhat younger pantheons that overthrew the Shifter gods and ended the Age of Wulfgard. Their chief deity is Zeus, god of the sky, thunder, and lightning; other important deities include Athena, virgin goddess of wisdom and warfare; Poseidon, god of the mountains, horses, and the sea; Aphrodite, goddess of love, beauty, and sex; Apollo, god of archery, music, and light; Ares, god of strife and warfare; and many more.
The Achaeans also greatly revere their heroes of old, most of whom were demigods. During what the Achaeans call the Golden Age, or the Age of Heroes, many powerful individuals walked the earth and performed legendary deeds of heroism. These heroes are still remembered today, though among them, only Hercules is now revered as a true god. Other heroes include Akhilleus, Odysseus, and more.