The Wild Lands
The Western Nation of Algol
Algol is a nation of merchants. The populace is spread fairly typically, with large concentrations of people residing in the cities with stretches of farmland and small villages inhabiting the rest of the land. They have the best and most plentiful natural resources of the four nations and as such, over time they have learned to sell them as effectively as possible, leading them to become the best merchants on the continent. With the war over, their mercantile services are also being employed by the other nations as well, only contributing to their wealth. Most people live in walled cities presided over by a noble lord which serve as centers of trade for the surrounding region. Each noble house also governs an area of trade, and their income is provided by taxes on that trade. The king in turn rules over the nobles and receives a portion of all taxes levied. Their nobles are officially known as Swordlords, due to how each noble house prides itself on mastering a specific sword technique, though many refer to them as “robber-barons” in casual conversation. The current king is the stoic King Rhobar, who despite his cold manner has managed to win a number of allies among the noble houses thanks to setting up the profitable Khorinis Ore Mines.
The country itself is mostly fertile and flat, with adequate rainfall and irrigation. The weather is mild, and the growing season is long. As such, much of the food consumed on the continent is grown in Algol. In addition to the booming food trade, Algol is rich in valuable mineral deposits. Coal, Iron, Granite, Silver and Gold can all be found in relative abundance on Algolian lands. It even contains the richest Mithril and Adamantium deposits on the continent. Because of the abundance of resources, many artisans make their homes in Algol, and so it is also the center of industry. Breweries, Distilleries, Bakeries, Oil Presses, Dyers, and many more can be found in villages and cities throughout the nation. To the west lie the savage wastelands, where the very wildlife is lethal. Numerous criminals, fey, and savage humanoids make their homes in these savage wastelands, though with the exception of the bandits, it usually doesn’t spill over into the country proper.
One extremely notable feature of Algol, is the world-famous Khorinis Valley in the northern region of the country. Situated at the base of the mountain range that separates it from its northern neighbor, the valley is colloquially referred to as the “Valley of Mines”. It is here that King Rhobar sends most prisoners to slave away in the Mithril mines. In order to prevent escape, the king has had the royal Fire Mages erect a massive barrier that people can enter, but never leave without permission from the mages. This mine has substantially boosted the profits of the nation and won Rhobar much support both domestically and abroad.