Wednesday, September 14, 2011

A Brief History of the Sorrowfell Plains


(this is the basic setting information for Crux of Eternity, and I place it here for general reference — yes, I am aware it's a bit cheesy, but it gets the job done)

At the beginning of time, existence was formed from the Elemental Chaos. The Primordials, godlike beings from that place, formed the World, but continued to test their creation and plunge it back into the forge. The gods of the Astral Plane saw potential in this creation, and decided to stabilize it and give it life.

So were the seeds of the Dawn War sown.

Working together, the gods defeated and vanquished the Primordials, establishing the order we know today.

The Sorrowfell Plains — also known as the Plain of Sorrow, the Plain of Sorg, or Sorgheim — were established during the Dawn War. A redeemed Primordial by the name of Sorg aided the gods in their war to stabilize the World and save creation. During the Dawn War, Sorg was defeated by his brethren, and legends claim his corpse was interred in a tomb in the Sorrowfell Plains. The dwarves routinely claim he is buried deep beneath the foundries of Sorgforge.

Since that time, the Plain of Sorg has seen the rise and fall of empires. Some of the legendary battles between the Arkhosian dragonborn and the Turathi tieflings may have occurred on Sorgheim, though records from the time have been lost since the rise of Nerath and the Cackledread War.

The human empire of Nerath brought together the various races under one banner, and is renowned as a golden age. However, it has long since crumbled; the inhabitants of Sorgheim stopped receiving Nerathi aid roughly a century ago, though it was not until fifty years ago that the problem became clear.

The Cackledread War is still remembered by some of the elders still living. It was a time of strife when the hyena-like gnolls overran Sorgheim. Some towns and cities fell, though the major Nerathi city of Scandshar, as well as the dwarven town of Sorgforge and the primarily human Duchy Jepson both survived. Various elven towns in the forest — such as the xenophobic town of Nainimdul — survived as well.

Even so, it was not a war easily won. As gnolls stormed the gates, some gained access to the cities and towns through their teleportation circles. Unclean monsters took advantage of the monsters to attack the weakened towns, and Duchy Jepson notably had to prevent the impact of the Fatehammer comet.

In the fifty years since the Cackledread War, things have returned to a cautious sense of normalcy. Gnolls still stalk the wilderness between towns, and goblin and orc raids are constant threats. However, merchant caravans still make their rounds, and the town guards are vigilant.

Still, certain elements require caution. The criminals and nobles of the Illustrious Menagerie of Peacocks supposedly have contacts throughout various levels of society, extending their influences with infusions of cash and threats of violence. More frightening are the terrorists and cultists of the Broken Chain, a den of insane vipers who may seek nothing less than the annihilation of all that exists. They are suspected to be a Primordial cult, but no one has any solid facts. It is only known that they strike without warning, attacking merchant caravans, crowded marketplaces, and the occasional high-profile target. Some whisper that if they truly seek to end the world, they are destined to succeed. Rumors among some magicians claim that they are the cause of gates to other places known as Convergences, though most claim that these are just the ramblings of the scared and insane in the aftermath of the Cackledread War.

Nerath stands in ruins, and the wolves are howling at the gate. It is a time for heroes to rise.

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