Above the hinterlands of Everdark, Ristell’s vast territory is carved six ways by the great nations of Arcadia, Nyx, Zaegrim’a Oqh, Tempest, the Cloudkingdoms, and the Wilds.
The sixth and final nation of Ristell, the Wilds are less of an organized power and more of an unconquerable, untameable mix of rainforest, forest, and swamplands. Some cities deep within the protection of the verdant growth house races long since separated from the civilizations to the north, but seeking out contact with these isolated pockets is dangerous; many who enter with goals of mapmaking or treasure seeking never return. Those who do are often scarred by their adventures, relating incoherent stories of monsters and poison, gods that walk the earth and ghosts unbound by the laws of the dead.
Country/Area Name(s): The Wilds; Wildlands
Ruling Species: mixed
Native Language: Signis; Common
These are the cities found within this area; each one is marked on the map, and divided by tiers. The larger the tier, the larger the city - tier one may be a small village or town, while tier four may be sprawling cities of grand proportions.
Pyree:RACE: human, elf. LEADER: Lord Okoroko (NPC). TIER: three.
LANGUAGE(S): Elvish; Common. ALLEGIANCE: Wilds.
APPEARANCE: A bright, festive city resplendent with spires and banners, constructed from many different types of stone and exotic woods imported from all over Ristell. A massive bell tower, dominating the skyline, stands adjacent to the massive temple in the center of the city. A large merchant's quarter, a hive of activity, takes up a large part of the city, and a large theater lies near the temple. A large seawall lies just behind the dockyards,, tall enough to protect the city from all but the largest of waves.
CULTURE: An air of constant festivity hangs over this city, as artists and entertainers abound. The city leadership take a very relaxed approach to governing, and the guards, though obvious, are adorned in ornate armor and are expected to be courteous to all citizens. Although all of the gods are honored, and a shrine to the unknown gods of distant realms stands beside the temple, worship isn't rigidly enforced. However, a rigid system of laws does exist, and heavy fines are levied against lawbreakers. Repeat offenders are sentenced to serve aboard ships, or take up caravan duties heading through the jungle to Skree or Chuh. Aside from a few holding cells, there are no prisons.
Mosi:RACE: human. LEADER: Council of Elders (NPC). TIER: two.
LANGUAGE(S): Common. ALLEGIANCE: Wilds.
APPEARANCE: As the first safe harbor for ships crossing over the Tempest Sea, and a common anchorage for Pyreean merchant vessels, Mosi is home to a large, well-developed dockyard. The town itself is largely constructed of large wooden huts with thatch roofs, built atop wooden stilts. More important structures, such as the temple and elders' hut, are built atop upraised stone platforms. The town's layout follows the lay of the land, and is irregular in design as a result.
CULTURE: The people of Mosi are hard-working, and very welcoming. They wear light, brightly-colored clothing, and shell necklaces are a common sight. While their settlement is rather simple, the people still find much to celebrate, and they often engage in smooth, graceful dances accompanied by song, stringed instruments, wood flutes, and drums. A group of elders offers advice, and loose rule.
Mosika:RACE: human. LEADER: Lady Hislia (NPC). TIER: two.
LANGUAGE(S): Common. ALLEGIANCE: Wilds.
APPEARANCE: Arranged in an ovoid shape atop a stone platform crowning a hill, Mosika is similar in many ways to nearby Mosi. Buildings are largely made of wood, but more important structures have walls made of adobe. A wooden palisade surrounds the town, although the entrance is rarely sealed.
CULTURE: While not as open as the citizens of Mosi, the Mosikans are formally hospitable. They maintain close relations with Mosi, and through them, with Pyree. A courageous, indomitable people, they are considered to be some of the finest navigators in all of Ristell. More militant than the Mosians, they pride themselves on their skills with the bog, spear, and blowgun, and will often challenge outsiders to contests of skill. No matter the outcome, a strong attempt will gain respect.
Skree:RACE: gryphons. LEADER: Lord Skonr (NPC). TIER: two.
LANGUAGE(S): Common. ALLEGIANCE: Wilds.
APPEARANCE: The upper towers, galleries, and spires of Skree tower above the surrounding jungle. At first glance, the city appears haphazard and asymmetrical, but careful examination reveals the glittering white stones are laid out according to a well thought-out plan. Beneath the canopy, but still well above the ground, aeries for expecting mothers and new clutches of gryphons and their parents, safe from any outside threat.
CULTURE: The gryphons of Skree maintain good relations between Chuh, and the cities of the keht'shu and d'jini, as well as the trade city of Pyree. Many of the gryphons decorate themselves with bright ribbons and gemstones, with more prominent gryphons bearing richer decor. Colors and types of gems vary between flights, and anyone familiar with Skree can tell a gryphon's status and allegiance at a glance. Unlike many gryphons, those in Skree don't arbitrarily banish the 'powerless ones', opting instead to use them as a Long Flight tasked with keeping a close eye on any distant threats. As such, the sparsely decorated gryphons are commonly seen far from Skree, some as far north as the western shores of Arcadia.
Chuh:RACE: forest-kin xeriin. LEADER: Lord Jark (NPC). TIER: two.
LANGUAGE(S): Lai'sen, Common. ALLEGIANCE: Wilds.
APPEARANCE: Tucked away within the dense jungle lies a city of large, fitted stones. Wide, square archways allow entry into the large structures, and the upper walls slant inward at an angle, while the tops of the buildings recede into ever-smaller circles which form a tall dome. Arranged around a large, open central square, the entire city interlocks, with buildings conjoined by walls or arches. In many places, vines and even trees have overgrown the stonework. Above the lower city, supported within the trees, there is a collection of wooden dwellings interconnected by walkways. During the rainy season, the population retreats into the branches to escape the flash floods.
CULTURE: A hardy, industrious people, the xeriin who live here arrived after the original builders left. Former refugees that they are, they welcome outsiders rather freely, but they only allow those who have proven themselves to be trustworthy into the upper city. Once a year, just after the rainy season ends, they hold a great festival to celebrate the end of the hardships the rainy season brings, and officially welcome mature xeriin into adulthood.
These are the landmarks and important places scattered through this area. They can be anything from forests and rivers to special caverns, monuments, ruins, and more.
A vast ring of towering, monolithic stones. The area inside the circle, as well as the stones themselves, remain free of overgrowth, and thick grasses grow within. The very air seems to hum with spirit energy, and many find their magic abilities enhanced. It is easy for magic-sensitive individuals to lose track of the time while within, and those who aren't sensitive to magic often feel uneasy. Who raised the stones, and why, has long been lost to the mists of time.
A massive, ruined city constructed from stone quarried from the nearby mountains, this nameless city has long been overgrown by vegetation. Nobody in living memory has dared enter, and those who have gotten close enough to lay eyes on it report shadowed entryways daring the unwary traveler to set foot within, and here and there, a carved face glares from beneath vines and roots, silently demanding an explanation for the intrusion upon the city's solitude. Who once lived there, and where they've gone, are mysteries, as the carved faces are too varied, and stylized, to determine anything by.
An ancient forest filled with humongous trees towering high in the air. The forest floor is largely clear of vegetation due to the thick canopy of leaves. One tree would require several people to link their arms together if they wanted to reach around one.
The headwaters of the Polari River cascade down the mountainside in a massive waterfall before the river continues on its way to the sea. A short ways from the towering falls, the river settles, and is deceptively smooth. A rapid current moves unseen a short ways from the riverbanks.
The world of Ristell is one of extremes; with only a single continent rendered habitable by the gods, the rest of the Realm is said to be covered in fire or ice, and nothing is known of any lands without. Several suns blaze brightly in the daytime, and a handful of moons at night, carefully watched and controlled by Azcen and Nirni. The Moon That Never Sets hangs ever in the sky, worshiped by the iahake, while the suns are honored by sol'tera and sphinx alike.
Ice covers the northern half of Ristell, accompanied by fierce blizzards that tear at the countries of Nyx and Zaegrim'a Oqh, and at Ristell's heart can be found the vast Arcadia Desert, often too hot for most weaker species to tolerate. South lay the jungles and forests of the Wilds, and to the east lay the Tempest sea, holding the kingdom of Tempest, and the various cloudkingdoms led by the keht'shu in the sky.
The Underground is called Everdark, and is vastly different from the surface world - lit by gemlights and sunstones, the peoples of the Everdark fight fiercely the attempts of Arcadia to gain control. Dark-skinned peoples of the surface are often attacked simply for the color of their skin, and many racial slurs exist against sol'tera, liniah, and keht'shu alike.
Realm Contributors: Fyfergrund, Bagelsworth, Darkeh, and Verridith