[PA] World's Largest Dungeon
Area: Barony of Skalgard
Description: Karkoth has perhaps been the region of Nerath where the most destruction was wrought. Although the entire world was ravaged by war, the civilizations of Karkoth fell into utter disrepair. Only small populations of outcasts and miscreants inhabit the wild land of Karkoth.
Except, of course, for Bonamia.
Bonamia was founded by Skalgard, a well-established Karkothian pirate lord when the Elemental Chaos first broke loose and all people were brought low. Nicknamed “The Baron” for the high standards he held his pirate crew to, Skalgard searched eternally for a way to profit from the world’s conflict with the Elemental Chaos. Not having the innate ability to speak with nature and lacking the education to find power in spells or gods, Skalgard kept his ships at the edges of battles, providing support for the forces of the Material Plane while incurring very few losses.
When the war was over and The Accords signed, Skalgard used his unwounded and well-disciplined crews to destroy the main Karkoth fleet. Having almost unlimited control of Karkoth’s waters made it easy for Skalgard to carve out a “Barony” of civilization in the now ruined Karkoth.
Skalgard started building a new city, with himself as king, called Bonamia. Seeing little option but to obey his commands or be killed, many citizens of Karkoth joined the Baron in his new city. All Skalgard needed now was a way to keep a hold of the civilians of Karkoth and stop them from rebelling against him. He tortured several knowledgeable wizards and clerics in his palace, forcing them to research some way to control his people. Meanwhile, he gave speeches to his people about the evils of “half-breeds.” “Was it not the genetic weakness of the Tieflings that had let the demons invade in the first place?” “Any mixing of races weakens the spirit, resulting in a man who is less than the sum of his parts.”
Skalgard fed the citizens of Bonamia his lies until it was truly believed that half-breeds were genetically inferior. Not long after his persuasion of the masses, a breakthrough in the research of the tortured wizards allowed Skalgard to tap into Psionic energies. Any person could learn Psionic powers as long as they trained every day and were completely committed to using it.
Skalgard used his utter devotion to the concept of control to quickly grasp the concepts of Psionic powers and taught many of his more trustworthy followers the same trick. Before long, Skalgard could easily control the minds of his fellow men.
Bonamia is now a city powered by slaves. Any half-breed, whether born in the city or captured on the high seas, is viable slave material. In this broken world, slaves are a valuable resource, and many cities from other regions use Bonamia-broken slaves to do their work.
Aspect: Absolute Control. Bonamia is a city built entirely upon the idea of control. Control the slaves, and you have a controlled income. Control the income, and you control the slavers. Control the slavers, and you control the slaves.
Area: Vault of the Drow
Description: Even amongst a race such as the Drow, and unbeknownst to the rest of the world, there are those who are cast aside. Outcasts of the Underdark, and not allowed to leave, these elves are forced into Tir’Dal. An underground prison, Tir’Dal is secluded from the rest of the Vault by thick walls and well guarded gates. Inside, the elves have learned to live as communities, shedding some of the hate that is normal to their people, knowing that their only real hope lies in cooperation.
Aspect: Survivor’s Spirit – Shunned by their own people, they’ve learned to make due with what they have. Using the discarded items and their surroundings, they’ve learned to fashion tools and other implements to meet the needs of their day to day lives.
Area: The Maze of Maur Khul
Description: A shattered and broken landscape, once a twisting and confusing mountain range, it is now broken open in many places down to depths that not even dwarves will venture to explore. Ruins of buildings once home to minotaurs can be found scattered through the landscape, some covered in thick layers of ash still, or broken on the sides of now sheer cliffs. One of the first known entrance ways that the demons used to invade.
Racial Inhabitants: Minotaur tribes were known to inhabit the mountain range, and were some of the first casualties of the great war. The ones that did not flee at the first sign of the invasion were soon enslaved and forced to unleash their violent and destructive inner beast under the command of the invaders. The ones that escaped joined in the defense of the lands and fought to retake their homelands beside the other races. Now few minotaur tribes remain, and all that do can be found wandering the edge of the Maze in search of clues and relics from their past, hoping to bring back the honor and nobility that flourished in the race before the invasion.
Aspect: Honor and sorrow. Much of the minotaurs’ civilization was wiped out in the initial waves of the invasion, and the little that remains is scattered and lost. Minotaurs of all ages go on spiritual quests to find themselves amidst the broken mountains of the Maze. Many times they never return, but sometimes they come back and are stronger for the journey.
Area: The Plain of Ebon Spires
Location: The Ghost Steppes
Description: Just beyond the great mountain spine that isolates The Maze of Maur Khul stretches a vast plain known for its brutal summers and cruel winters. It’s stony soil offers little hope for cultivation, and the inhabitants are fiercely protective of its few resources on offer: vast herds of wild beasts and exotic pelts from the larger predators.
The plain was once home to a citadel of talented elementalists, usually romaniticised as a paragon of arcane society. While often blamed (at least in part) for their role in The Rending, the truth is especially difficult to divine since no traces of the city are currently known to exist. Legend has it that a single spectacular explosion was responsible for the city’s demise, and the rocks that litter the soil of the entire region each belonged to the massive fortress-city.
What little remains of the survivors of this civilization now wander the plains as fiercely territorial nomads, constantly at war over land and the herds on them.
Aspect: Thin Veil – Spirits of the deceased have a difficult time moving on in this region, leading to complex and sometimes lengthy funerary rites among the inhabitants. Locals speak of a spectral mirror of their own world teeming with throngs of the dead more numerous than the living. Although corporeal undead are nearly unheard of, spirits often seem to have less difficulty interacting with the world of the living, and many natives have adopted the art of warding tattoos to keep unwanted shades at bay.
Area: The Great Wild Wood
Location: The Duskglades
Description: The Duskglades stand emptied and seem to always be covered with an unnatural mist. Tales abound of a race of Wood Elves that lived here decades ago. They came under attack from unknown beasts and, in return for a pledge of eternal loyalty, were given power by a god to help them defeat their attackers. They faltered in their loyalty after the beasts were driven away, and the god cursed them to remain in a bestial form. Some were able to change themselves back to their elvish state. Shortly after gaining this ability they moved on and left the Duskglades. Others were not so lucky. They became the beasts that their people once feared. There is talk of a pained, vicious howling in the Duskglades at night. Many an adventurer has found that he did not have what it takes to travel through here. When venturing into the Great Wild Wood, the Duskglades are usually given a wide berth.
Aspect: Cursed- An eerie mist covers the area. The woods themselves seem to twist and change. The once-elves lurking in the woods have some small shred of their intellect and humanity left, but counting on them to be reasonable and peaceful is a fool’s hope.