The Rise of The Fallen
(Old Medium Savage Land/Humanoid Kingdom)
The Gruag-Mal is a hilly, eroded region in Northern Elondaron. It stretches from The Kazeron Wilds to The World’s Edge Mountains to the swamps of Daegoron, and is generally thought of as an inhospitable backwater (“Gruag Mal” means “Bad Land” in the orcish tongue, and the name of the region in Eld Kelsenoni, Caliban, means essentially the same). Despite numerous rivers running through the region (meltwater from glaciers in The World’s Edge)), the soil is poor and vegetation is sparse. Most of the arable land is up at the top of the mighty plateaus that lie between the rivers. The land is harsh, and difficult to traverse. And the residents tend to be openly hostile of outsiders, because the Gruag-Mal is where most of the Orcs of Kelsenon were forced to settle as the humans pushed them out of the more bountiful areas of Alrahon.
During the early days of The Kelsenon Empire orc marauders threatened human communities, forcing them to band together against the orcish race. The orcs were pushed from their ancestral homes to The Gruag-Mal, which caused them to strike back against their perceived oppressors in an ever-widening spiral of violence. During The Hundred Years Chaos entire tribes of orcs allied themselves with The Witch Lord, under the promise that the lands the humans had driven them from would be returned. Other tribes allied with The Army of Darkness when it breached the world. Hundreds of thousands of orcs marched against the lands of Kelsenon, used as disposable shock troops. When The Witch Lord was defeated and the devils were driven from The World, the orc army scattered. Most were forced back into the hated Gruag-Mal.
Though the Orcs are the most famous residents of the Gruag-Mal, they are far from the only ones. During the life of the Kelsenon Empire, the Gruag-Mal served as a dumping ground for criminals, dissidents, and the banished. Though most of these migrants moved on into The Kazeron Wilds, many remained among the orcs, and it’s not difficult to find tribes filled with orcs, humans, and half-breeds. This tends to surprise visitors, who assumed that the orcs would have killed all the humans by now. Since both populations have a common beef with The Empire and a desire to expand out of the region, the two races actually have enough in common to keep together.
The Gruag-Mal is generally thought of as a wasteland. The eroded hills and badlands eat up much of the arable land, and the soil is very poor, so little vegetation grows. There is precious little wood—most of the building material is stone or hide. The land is rent with strife, as the various clans battle over grazing land, and many monsters (trolls, ogres, giants and the like) hunt both livestock and the herders.
But despite all this, the region is not without its attractions. For good or ill, the region has a large population, and would be a formidable fighting force if they could be united. No one in their right mind wishes to attack The Gruag-mal, both because the terrain is so inhospitable and because of the reputed fierceness of the residents. The region has excellent resources in stone and can’t be beat if you want troll or ogre hide (along with some very exotic meats from some of the more hardy critters in the region). And the abundant water has lead to a technological advantage most nations can’t boat of—water power.
Description: (Old Medium Savage Land/Humanoid Kingdom) 35 KP
Advantages: Protected Location (10), Abundant Population (10), Feared (10), Reputation (5), Technological Edge (Water power) (5), Abundant Natural Resources (building stone, exotic monster meat & skins) (10)
Disadvantages: Frontier (5), Internal Strife (10), Resource Dependency (wood, food) (10) Monster Infested (5), Despised (5)