The Flannaes is the region of Oerik where Greyhawk Adventures takes place. It has a multitude of ethnicities, kingdoms, churches, and political factions.
While the demihuman races and noble humans have family names, common birth humans have only one name, usually followed by a profession (Rygnar the Woodcutter). While traveling abroad, using the name of your hometown is traditional (Rygnar of Fablehaven). An exception to this is wizards, who by tradition only go by their singular name.
All the standard races are here, as are different human subraces. Its more flavor than anything else, and the vast majority of humans are mutts, but being a pureblooded whatever can have roleplaying consequences (the scarlet brotherhood only admits suliese, but since they’re a gathering of spies and assassins, being an innocent suliese makes you suspect as being an agent of theirs.) information on the different races and subraces of human can be found at this website if you’re interested. http://members.aol.com/dmwog/races.html
Divine powers are very real to peoples every day lives, Vecna is a renowned wizard who achieved godhood, as is Iuz, another ascendant who’s conquered maybe a fifth of the world. aside from St. Cuthbert, however, the other deities never send avatars, and are seen as more remote beings. Still, people worship them, and you should have a patron deity even if not a cleric or paladin. if you don’t worship a god you’re either a major badass or a world class jackass. For a really full list of deities in greyhawk, go to this website, though i don’t recommend reading it from end to end no matter how committed you are.. http://www.wizards.com/rpga/downloads/LG_Deities.zip
If you dont have the time to research the different human races and kingdoms, coming from the Free City of Greyhawk is easiest, for its the most cosmopolitan location, with every human and demihuman race having representation there. Its declared neutrality in the wars that have ravaged the rest of the continent means that people of every ethical and moral alignment walk its streets without taxing the city watch. The area encompasses more than just the walls of the city, so coming from the hill country or farms or coast is completely plausible and to still have citizenship there. Walking around with armor is commonly accepted and lawful, but to carry anything larger than a dagger requires a weapon permit, you’ll all get them free starting off (a 5 gp value!) if you want, which means you went down to a city watch office and registered yourself (they take down your physical description, and note what weapons youre carrying, as well as armor and what not), though nothing larger than a greatsword is allowed (no pushing around a ballista i guess).
If we were having coffee at a starbucks, and i pulled out a gun and placed it on the table, you’d probably feel a bit unsettled at the least. Thats the general attitude towards magic in Oerth, its an unnatural amount of power over life and death, and even in the hands of the authorities it is not completely trusted. Still, a mad wizard made the Free City of Greyhawk the city that it is centuries ago, and the mage’s guild is a powerful (and noble) institution. The universities of magic are noticeable, but the closed campuses prevent people from daily mingling with wizards in training. Divine magic, is of course different; people trust more in the gods granting spellcasting ability than people seizing it for themselves.
People generally dont care about things unless it affects their lives. People are aware of spelljammers and other worlds, they dont know much about them, and generally don’t care because knowledge of faerun won’t bring in the harvest.
See Planar Cosmology.