Orkay is a great country spanning from the icy mountains of the northern border to the arid scrub known as Kalah's Waste. The culture is incredibly diverse, and Orkay is often seen as a melting pot of various races and creeds. Magic is viewed liberally, meaning many mages call Orkay home. Orkay is the largest and wealthiest of the nations in the Imperial Heartlands.
History and CultureEdit
Orkay was one of the strongest countries of the Old Empire. When the empire disbanded, Orkay became divided between squabbling warlords and wizards vying for control. Many cities were destroyed in the ensuing battles, including Val Kormin and Arcanator, and as a result it was decided that peace talks would have to be made. It was at these negotiations that it was decided a monarchy would be instated, and King Larem I was chosen due to his victories as a general.
It did not take long, however, for the former power groups to become frustrated, and within ten years the country had returned to civil war. Larem was killed by an assassin group and a new king was appointed, who lasted only a few months before he was executed for treason, because he had not sided with his court's agreed faction. A council was convened in the ruins of Arcanator (neutral ground) and there were many suggestions as to how the country could be run.
Orkay seemed close to splitting up into six different nations, when the Grand Wizard Vizian suggested an alternative. The country could be divided into six regions, each with a ruling prince, and a king could rule over all; the people of a region would choose their "prince" and the princes would decide who among them should serve as "king." (Whichever region the king was chosen from would then have to elect a new prince). In this way, Orkay became known as a Democratic Kingdom.Orkay is an extremely diverse country today, both racially and geographically. Elves are found in the western forests, nomadic halfling clans patrol the southern scrubs, and colonies of dwarves dwell in the forest of the north. Regardless, Orkay is primarily a human country, and most of the towns and cities are governed by human councils. Currently, Orkay has two non-human princes (both elves) and has never seen a non-human king.
Orkayan agriculture is internationally famous, as they produce huge reserves of wine in their southern vineyards. Vegetables and livestock are farmed further north, and hunters still ply their trade along the northern border. Orkay maintains healthy trade relations with Cramen, Kuldan, Anvar, Thane, Bruanon, Dura, Altea and Ravain (less so Easthaven, as Easthaven traders maintain their own supply lines) and poverty is only a problem in the large cities.
Use of magic in Orkay is quite frequent, as magisters are seen as widely respected (a tradition that dates back to the Old Empire). There are no sanctions on the use of arcane spells and a small Circle of Magi exists in Narrowhaven. Orkay has a large population of nearly 1,000,000 people, most of whom live in the central plains, and has a disputed island colony called Midgard. The current king is popular both internally and internationally and is styled King Andre II.
Locations in OrkayEdit
- Cyris - The capital city of Orkay, and houses the Golden Court, the seat of the King. The city is vast, and just like the diversity seen across Orkay, the distribution of wealth is extremely unbalanced. The slums of Cyris are a tangled maze to those who do not know them, so travellers tend to stick to the Gold Quarter, where the nobility and wealthy merchants live. Cyris is not a particularly defensible city, despite its size, but Orkay rarely gets into wars.
- Lampour - A small city built into the canyons east of Anvar, housing a large marketplace, an impressive library, and not much else.
- Narrowhaven - This trading port controls many of the ships across the Resting Sea. It was also the location of a number of recent riots against taxation of trade.
- Kalah's Waste - An arid wasteland in the extreme south of Orkay.
- Wyvern Roost - A mountain crag on the road to Lampour occupied by wyverns.
- Arcanator - The ruins of the mage city found on Orkay's northern border.
- Val Kormin - This ancient Imperial City has long since fallen into the hands of sinister creatures, and the old tunnels below the streets have broken into the Underdark below. Bordering both Bruanon and Scarfell, this city once served as a centre of trade, entertainment and recreation for its people. Now it is only one more brooding ruin.