What remains of the once-powerful Aruth Empire is a small human nation located on a wide peninsula in the northwest. The land is heavily wooded, and is quite good for farming, thanks to the Gante river at its northern border. With very few exceptions, the population in entirely Human. Half-orcs from the northern steppes have been known to cross the Gante and set up settlements in unpopulated forest areas.
A character knows the following information with a successful skill check:
History DC 15 or Child of the Northern Tribes Background: Prior to the Last War, the throne in Valyn was home to an Emperor, who ruled the entire West, from the peaks of the Northern Steppes, to the farthest Tyrion Island. The last great Emperor, Hastion, had developed a fierce hatred of Orcs after waging war for control of the Northern Steppes. This hatred was further magnified by an increasing madness, the result of which was a mad desire to eradicate all orcs from Tarlisalia.
Sending his entire army into the Eastern Wastes proved to be the final crack in the Empire’s armor. By the time of the War, the Empire had fallen out of favor with the Elves and Eladrin of Quelthalin, who by this time bore no love for the imperial ways of the Men of the West, and made no small effort to harass and hinder the army’s eastward march. Finally arriving on the plains with a diminished force, the Generals order the march to continue, and it was a brief, bloody campaign. Not a month would pass before the Lion’s Banner lay tattered on the battlefield. Spread across the Wastes by hordes of battle-tested Orcs, Ogres, and Trolls, entire garrisons were lost to starvation, and most of those that survived soon disappeared as they fled into the desert land of Periotor.
With no militia, the Empire crumbled. By the end of the Last War, the Orcs and Aruth-descended Half-Orcs controlled the Northern Wastes, the Tyrion Islands became a series of independent states, and the small Tarsis countryside raised their own banner for the first time.
The generations since have known little peace. Control of the Lion Throne has been hard to hold, as no faction has been able to stay in control of the populace for long enough to become entrenched. In the minds of most Aruthans, their Empire should and will rise again, and the line of men waiting in the wings to promise a return to glory is seemingly unending.
Most of Aruthan civilization lives in the capital city of Valyn, where the Lion Throne is still highly contested. A number of factions constantly struggle for power, and the populace tends to consider themselves as either a Merchant, Military, or Temple caste member. Those not interested in the politics of the city tend to live in the various villages that line the coast or the nation’s many miles of farm land.
Settlements and Features
Capital City, Population 42,000
Aruth’s capital is also the nation’s chief port. The city is normally divided amongst the political factions that dominate the city’s culture. Most of the architecture shows a history with strong naval influence, most notable in the Temple district, where the Temple of Kord, God of Storms, is rivaled in splendor only by the Temple of Melora, Goddess of the Sea.