Tensions have risen, and a call for adventurers has been made. There are five major powers that control most of the known world: Vinosea, the Theocracy of the Golden Blade, The Sorcerous Kingdon of Eglas, The Realm of Tumunzar, The Kingdom of Belothlond, and The Grand Duchies of Ningonde. Will you leave your homelands in search of riches, glory, and fame?
The Five Powers
Each of the five powers have there own people, culture and government. Many minor powers may exist in the borderlands between two of the powers, but their ability to affect world politics is minimal. They are small and ephemeral, so they are not listed here.
Vinosea, the Theocracy of the Golden Blade
Vinosea, the Theocracy of the Golden Blade, is run by the Council of High Priests. This council is comprised of the high priests (or priestesses) of major religions. Decisions are made by votes by proportion of faithful. Generally speaking, the government is authoritarian. While new religions are treated well, even welcomed, apostasy and heresy are severely prosecuted. Despite this, the Council routinely sends out missionary groups into other nations and the wilderness to bring their religious ideals to those people and to bring those peoples' religions back. Refusing entry to these missionaries is generally seen by the Council as an insult: they are on a mission from god, after all. This has lead to military skirmishes along their borders with other states.
The Sorcerous Kingdom of Eglas
The Sorcerous Kingdom of Eglas is a elvish gerontocracy run by the eldest of the sorcerers (or -esses) in the nation. Disparate groups in Eglas are locally controlled by an elder sorcerer, who acts with broad authority stemming from the trannual gathering of elders called the elders-moot. These elders either come to a elders-moot themselves or send a proxy. Traditionally, the next in line to the elder's position is sent as the proxy. In times of great change, disaster, or war, the elders-moot may be called more often. The elders-moot always takes place in the capital, Tase.
The Realm of Tumunzar
The Realm of Tumunzar is a nation that is controlled by the mountain homes. Each settlement outside of the mountain homes serves a mountain home, providing materials, men and information. In return, the mountain homes provide protection to each of the settlements. Prior to the War of the Homes, each mountain home was its own fiefdom. Now, the homes are aligned under the banner of The Realm of Tumunzar. Politically, the realm is a direct democracy, with major decisions requiring a poll of every person living in the Realm. This makes for slow changes in generally, leading to an apparently conservative take on most issues.
The Kingdom of Belothlond
The Kingdom of Belothlond is ruled over by King Aros IV. Belothlond is the smallest of the five great powers, but it is one of the most militarized. Every person, upon reaching adulthood, must serve a term of service in the Belothlondian army. Generally speaking, this combined with the fact that the nation is surrounded by the Veil Mountains, makes invading Belothlond very difficult to successfully invade. This has also made the Belothlodians insular and wary of outsiders.
The Grand Duchies of Ningonde
The Grand Duchies of Ningonde is ruled by a coalition of merchant guilds. This prompts the motto of the Ningondian foreign ministry: "In peace, gold; in war, steel". Of all of the five major powers, Ningonde serves as the financial center of the world. All currencies and goods can be traded here; there is nothing that is considered contraband. Combined with a general stance of open borders, this makes Ningonde home to the world's largest and most powerful guilds.
The world generally uses the Dwarven calendar when coordinating things across regional boundaries. Local communities may use a local calendar, usually related to a patron deity. Port Hamor and the surrounding areas will generally stick to the Dwarven calendar.
Current Political Climate
Tensions are high. Refusal of Vinosean missionaries by The Kingdom of Belothlond has inflamed relations between those two powers. In the interest of keeping trade flowing, The Grand Duchies of Ningode have attemped to moderate a peace, but those talks have stalled. Meanwhile, prospectors from The Realm of Tumunzar have been repulsed by the border settlements in The Sorcerous Kingdom of Eglas. Vinosea, fearing increased Tumunzarian power in the region, has been secretly sending saboteurs through Eglas to disrupt the prospectors' attempts. Some of these saboteurs have been caught by Eglas security forces, spoiling the previously cordial relationship between The Sorcerous Kingdom of Eglas and Vinosea.
Throughout all of this, the current Hammer-in-Chief of the Tumunzarian military, Hammer Lord Furi, has been desperately trying to keep this from spilling into open war. In his attempt to maintain a peaceful stability, Hammer Lord Furi leverged his personal report with King Aros IV to forge a military alliance with The Kingdom of Belothlond. For the moment at least, no one power is willing to trigger all-out war between the five major powers.
The current tensions have seen the five major powers pull almost all of their standing military might back to their nations borders. This has resulted in far-flung settlements, most notably Port Hamor, being left with only a basic garrison to maintain law and order within their walls. This has left the local rulers of those settlements disgruntled with the home government, as pleas for reinforcements go unanswered.
The Call to Adventure
The need exists to go forth from Port Hamor to explore, to map, and to tame the unfettered wilderness across Dadun. This has lead to adventurers leaving there homelands and traveling to Port Hamor to seek their fortunes. Some, however, were not given a choice. Many nations, most notably Vinosea, use exile to the new world as a punishment for political crimes. Whether by choice, or by force, these people have no homes to return to. They must march West and find their fortune, or die.