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    Official Nations of Ishgar

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    Official Official Nations of Ishgar

    Post by Admin 23rd November 2020, 6:36 am


    Official Nations of Ishgar QoRVuD3

    Welcome to FTRP's official nation's page, where you will find detailed entries on all nations present in our own site canon up to this point. As the nations presented below are part of our official site lore, you can, of course, make characters from these nations. The current date for the in-character world of Earthland, in which the continent of Ishgar is located, is set in the year

    X891

    For the official map of Ishgar click here

    Important Note:
    Your character may not fill any of the official positions of any of the nations (such as the King / Queen of Fiore, etc.). You may not interact with any NPC holding these positions outside of official site events. You may not be related to these NPCs. You may not control these NPCs. Similarly, you may not harm or kill them. New nations may not be added to the continent of Ishgar. The Nations, as presented here, may not be modified in any capacity that may impact the descriptions of these nations as specified here, whether this is in personal plot or other scenarios outside of official site events. Nations may only be changed or added through official site events. You may not destroy or attack any official site locations as specified in this thread or detailed by other official descriptions on the site. Failure to adhere to these restrictions concerning our in-world lore will result in official warnings.

    Nations Index

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    Official Re: Official Nations of Ishgar

    Post by Admin 23rd November 2020, 6:36 am



    Fiore

    Capital: Crocus
    Largest City: Era
    Official Language: Ishgar with Fiorean Accent (Real-World Equivalent - American English)
    Government: Constitutional Monarchy - Kingdom
    Head of State: King / Queen of Fiore
    Official Representative: Chairman / Chairwoman of the Magic Council
    Official Governing Body: The Magic Council of Fiore
    Head of Military: King / Queen of Fiore
    Population: ~60,000,000
    Wizard Population: ~20%
    Economy: Rich
    Currency: Jewel

    Description:
    Fiore is a nation of diverse terrain and population, roughly encompassing the most western peninsula of mainland Ishgar and bordering the nations of Seven and Bosco. Home to all manners of magical creatures as well as a large wizard population, the people of Fiore, in general, enjoy great freedoms, stability, and prosperity born from the nation’s well-established economic basis and political landscape. By and large, everyone is welcome in Fiore, as long as they identify with the country’s ideals of individualism, peace, and freedom, “Live and let live” being the guiding principle amongst the mages and non-mages of Fiore alike.

    Fiore was not always the peaceful and civilized place it is now. Five hundred years ago, the country saw all manner of mythical creatures walking its lands and lurking in the seas nearby. What drew them has remained a mystery, but the most prevalent beings were dragons, gods, and demons. Though tumultuous with each other, generally they remained peaceful with the small villages dotted all across the peninsula, finding them more interesting than threatening due to how underdeveloped they were by comparison. A war between the gods and demons broke the peace everyone enjoyed, ravaging the lands with their disagreements. Both sides took humans under their tutelage to bolster their armies, giving rise to Demon Slayers and God Slayers of various elements. The battles were long and vicious and in a matter of years not only had the evenly matched Gods and Demons all but wiped themselves out, but most of the slayers had been buried in unmarked graves in one section of Fiore that became the Cursed Lands. Though the remaining deities appeared to leave Fiore, the remaining slayers passed on their knowledge as they saw fit to friends and children. The dragons and humans lived much more peacefully alongside each other by comparison, but in time the magical creatures saw that their close proximity was putting them at risk as well. Less civilized dragons were far more hostile to all creatures and had started fighting anything that stood in their way, especially amongst their own kind. Hoping to keep Fiore safe, they taught a few of the humans Dragon Slaying magic so they could defend themselves should the worst happen, then disappeared into the skies.

    Now that Fiore's power shifted entirely to the humans, their growth exploded. Small villages turned into towns and cities where they took advantage of their environments and began to trade. Though still comparatively small, the mage population in Fiore rose in the absence of the mythical creatures, and slayers, though still around, became even more scarce without the original teachers. As the population increased, so did chaos. Skirmishes between mage and non-mage were common, both on the sides of right and wrong. With power comes responsibility, and it became increasingly clear that the Fiorean people needed someone to enforce this responsibility on all. It was then that a king naturally emerged. His good-nature, charm, and wisdom earned him the respect of Fiore's citizens and served to guide the people to sort out differences in a more orderly way. He established a policing force and laid the groundworks to put mages to more constructive use in attempts to keep down the fighting with structure and discipline. The relationships between those with magic and those without were by no means mended, but it was on the right track.

    Modern Fiore is, at least nominally, governed by its King or Queen, who simultaneously serves as both the Official Head of State of the nation as well as the Supreme Commander of its armed forces, a military body called the “Rune Knights”, which simultaneously acts as the nation’s internal police force, i.e. its executive power, as well as its army to counter foreign threats. In reality, the legislative power is held by the Magic Council, a group of 7 renown and powerful mages voted into office by the people of Fiore, which deals with the day-to-day business of Fiorean internal and external politics and makes the majority of the decisions, debating and voting on issues that busy the nation. While, in theory, the King or Queen of the nation has the final say, this right is rarely invoked, making Fiore effectively a pseudo-democracy. The power over the Rune Knights is held by the group’s Commander-in-chief.

    Fiore’s economy is based on a diverse range of different local micro-economies depending on the region of Fiore one finds themselves in. This can vary from city to city and town to town, though most notably, the nation is known for its system of employing Mage Guilds, organizations of mages that are officially approved by the Magic Council, and adhere to its decisions and commands. These mages will, in exchange for monetary compensation, perform almost any service that a client requests on a global scale, Fiore thus effectively building an industry around its mages and their guilds. There exist, of course, Mage Guilds that are not sanctioned by the Magic Council of Fiore, which are colloquially called “Neutral Guilds” or “Independent Guilds” (While technically being “Dark Guilds”, as any guild in Fiore not officially acknowledged by the Council is labeled a “Dark Guild”) and are largely left alone or ignored unless acting against the Council’s interests, or, in some cases, actively defy the orders and laws of the Magic Council and Fiore, which will brand them as “Dark Guilds”, outcasts and traitors to be hunted, judged, and imprisoned by the Rune Knights and other “legal” guilds.

    Having the most organized outlets for mages to find steady work, Fiore sees a large bump in mage immigrants specifically, though all with a passport are free to come and go as they please. The powers that be have done their best to keep Fiore as neutral as possible by lending mages as needed and running countless diplomatic meetings to both increase their own relationships or try to mediate between others. Pleasing so many different countries is quite a challenge, so it has been met with varying degrees of success. While Fiore has yet to make any enemies, they have a tense alliance with Bellum, which has its implications for Pergrande, though Fiore has yet to be as vocal about their suspicions for the largest nation as the rest of the countries. Their efforts have been rewarded with their neighbor to the east, Seven, as well as Ca-Elum, and Midi. There is an easy friendship here and they help each other out as much as they can.

    Overall, Fiore is a land of opportunity where one is free to spend their time how they please as long as they respect their fellow countrymen and women, and live their lives in peace or in prosperity, and even, should one care to do so, join one of its many guilds to try and become an adventuring mage of power, renown, wealth, and influence.

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    Official Re: Official Nations of Ishgar

    Post by Admin 23rd November 2020, 6:37 am



    Bosco

    Capital: Aurelia
    Largest City: Aurelia
    Official Language: Ishgar with Fiorean Accent (Real-World Equivalent - American English)
    Government: Direct Democracy - Republic
    Head of State: N/A
    Official Representative: Minister of Foreign Affairs
    Official Governing Body: The Iron Covenant
    Head of Military: General of Defense
    Population: ~15,000,000
    Wizard Population: ~0.1%
    Economy: Decent
    Currency: Jewel

    Description:
    Bosco is a nation of rocky, mountainous terrain that isolates the country from Seven and Iceberg to the north and Fiore to the west. Bosco’s inland is dry and cold, dominated mostly by indigenous wildlife, making it unideal for permanent habitation. The majority of the nation’s population can be found at the milder coasts to the south and the border regions to Seven, Stella, and Fiore, which are defined by a more hospitable climate, open grasslands in the south, and thick forests in the west and northwest.

    Bosco is a nation of proud people that have great care for their land, their culture, and their achievements as a society, and collective Bosconian consciousness is focused on overcoming and triumphing over hardship as the greatest of all virtues. This stems from both the reality of Bosco’s inhospitable lands as well as another curious factor: Most Bosconians are born without the ability to learn or utilize any kind of magic. Only a tiny fraction of their population is actually able to use magic in any capacity. This fact, however, has made their nation what it is today. The ingenuity and inventiveness of Bosconians know no bounds, and as such, the country has, technologically, advanced much further much faster than the rest of Ishgar, and indeed, all of Earthland, for that matter. Bosco’s technology is, in fact, so advanced that it borders on magic itself, and most people outside of the nation itself would have a hard time using, or even understanding their developments.

    This fact, of course, has drawn the attention of all manners of shady and power-hungry parties from outside the nation, and while Bosco itself is a very peaceful nation that enjoys a great sense of unity and very little to no unrest amongst its people, the government of Bosco is and has been concerned, rightly so, with matters of espionage that are relevant for the security of the nation at a nigh constant. This has led to an increased militarization of the country, and while all Bosconians are mostly peaceful people, they are prepared to do whatever it takes to defend their way of life, their home from invaders. Bosco, based on precedent, places a great emphasis on its defense, counter-espionage, and keeping of its technological secrets, and most of the national budget is spent to uphold the integrity of these matters. No matter how good you think you are, you will probably not be able to infiltrate this nation, and crossing its borders can only be done with explicit permission from its government.

    Those that are born with capacities to use magic are recruited or conscripted into a special unit of Bosco’s armed forces, the Bosco Defense Force, and trained to become some of the most effective, efficient, and disciplined Soldiers that exist in Earthland. Bosconian mages are the elite of the elite and enjoy great status and renown within their society, being viewed as the strongest defenders of the nation. Rightfully so. Soldiers belonging to the “Magia” division of Bosco’s military are trained relentlessly and excessively while also combining their magical abilities and Bosco’s advanced technology, most of them easily possessing the power and proficiency to rival Fiore’s or Bellum’s strongest mages in sheer strength. While the power of this force is rarely utilized, Bosco doesn’t shy away from defending itself and destroying those that seek to encroach on its technological supremacy with brute force and all means at their disposal.

    Bosco is ruled by a government apparatus referred to as the Iron Covenant, which is a form of Council that is made up of the 5 Mayors of the 5 big cities of Bosco, Aurelia, the biggest city and Bosco’s capital on the coast near Fiore, Argentia near Seven, Aes near Stella, and Ferria as well as Chalybsa in the south near the coast of Minstrel, in which the majority of Bosco’s population are concentrated, as well as a representative elected by those that live outside of the cities. The residents of the individual cities, which are dominated by impressive skylines of massive buildings and towers that stretch towards the clouds and flashing neon lights at all corners, vote for their respective Mayor in elections that repeat every 4 years. The Mayors convene daily and come together to make decisions over the future of the nation, appoint ministers that handle the different aspects of life in Bosco, and work closely with the military and their leader, which is bestowed the title “General of Defense”, to ensure that their home is protected at all times.

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    Official Re: Official Nations of Ishgar

    Post by Admin 23rd November 2020, 6:37 am



    Seven

    Capital: Septim
    Largest City: Septim
    Official Language: Ishgar with Savantí Accent (Real-World Equivalent - Irish English)
    Government: Feudal Monarchy - Kingdom
    Head of State: High King / High Queen of Seven
    Official Representative: Voice of the Forest
    Official Governing Body: High King / High Queen of Seven
    Head of Military: High King / High Queen of Seven
    Population: ~13,250,000
    Wizard Population: ~75%
    Economy: Decent
    Currency: Jewel

    Description:
    Seven is an ancient nation with a history as rich as its culture, traditions, and land. The nation of Seven, though not always existing as a unified nation-state, has possessed a national consciousness and identity for longer than many other nations in Ishgar, and indeed the world at large, its people thus developing a distinct pride for their own little corner of Earthland. Seven is populated by the natives of this country, a race of humanoid beings that refer to themselves as Elves, the descendants of Human settlers that have made the country their home, as well as a plentiful group of Half-Elves, the result of an obvious combination. Race, however, is the last topic that matters to the people of Seven. To be accepted as a citizen of this nation, one must simply live with respect of nature and their fellows, the people of Seven, no matter if Elves, Humans, or Half-Elves, living in harmony with the world around them, which constitutes an important part of savantí culture. Malicious destruction of nature’s gifts and beauty, the taking of a life without the proper respect, proper ceremony, is considered the greatest of crimes and looked upon harshly by savantí society.

    The nation of Seven is largely covered by a single, massive forest referred to by the people of the nation as the Coillearnach Seacht, the Seven Woodlands, the nation of Seven deriving its name from this defining feature. This forest contains an abundance of natural beauty, a plethora of magical and non-magical species calling the canopies and woodlands their home. The Seven Woodlands give way to a snow-capped, mountainous terrain in the west, north, and south of the nation, steep oceanside cliffs and massive waterfalls being the sight one can encounter here. All in all, Seven’s terrain almost appears like a nature reserve, not least due to the attitude its people hold towards the complex ecosystem within these unique lands.

    Seven’s people are, for all intents and purposes, pacifists, and while more quarrelsome factions exist, as it is the case in most nations, the majority of the population prefers to avoid conflict and solve problems diplomatically and in a peaceful way. Do not let this attitude fool you, however. Seven is one of the nations in Ishgar with the highest concentration of skilled and powerful mages, or Druids, as they are called in Seven, who will not hesitate to defend themselves and what is dear to them with a ferocity that seems out of place for such peaceful people.

    In accordance with their creed, Sevenites do not live in traditional cities you would see in Fiore or other similar nations, but build their settlements to be as minimally invasive or damaging to the environment. Their houses and buildings often sit within the massive trees of the Seven Woodlands, built into the sturdy wood, even in the canopies themselves, or carved into the stone at the base of the mountains, interconnected amongst each other with bridges, stairs, and platforms supported by magic, thus forming their communities, villages, and society. The largest city in Seven is its capital, Septim, the city of the Lake’s Waterfalls, called so for the two waterfalls from two rivers, one that originates in the north and one in the south, that meet in the midst of the capital within the Seven Woodlands to form a large lake, aptly called Loch Spéire, that finally flows into the River Spéire.

    On an island within Loch Spéire, connected to the surrounding capital by a large and elaborate stone bridge, lies a single, massive tree that stretches hundreds, if not thousands of meters high, rumored to be the oldest tree in all of Ishgar, which houses the royal palace of Seven as well as the royal court and its accommodations, the most notable of which is the Voice of the Forest, a man or woman that serves as Seven’s connections to the outside world and acts as a royal representative who travels to other nations in place of the monarch, often with a specific intention. The High King or High Queen of Seven can be found here, picked from the Elven dynasty that has ruled this nation ever since the beginning of recorded history, acting as the overseer of sorts to savantí society to ensure that nature receives the proper respect it deserves, that the woodlands and its citizens are well taken care of, and that the nation of Seven is stable and remains so. In times of great trouble the High King or High Queen will also call their most trusted advisors to find solutions to the problems the nation faces, and in times of war, should it come to this, they will also act as the commander of Seven’s army.

    Seven, of course, does not possess an army, or any other branch of armed forces in accordance with its generally pacifist attitude, though if the worst of scenarios occurs and the Seven Woodlands are invaded, the sacred peace of nature being disrupted, every citizen of Seven is ready to take up arms against the perpetrator of such acts of evil and will retaliate with whatever means are available to them. Despite the fact that Seven does not boast a standing army, one should take great care to respect savantí attitudes and opinions, lest the entire nation of Seven mobilizes for war.

    Seven does not possess much of an extranational economy, most goods the people of Seven need being produced within the nation and sold amongst its own people, the majority of the population of this pacifist nation preferring to keep to themselves if possible. The markets of Seven thrive, goods from Seven being sold to people from Seven, and more rarely, curious or interested travelers and visitors. The most notable of exported goods is savantí silk, a product that is as much prestigious as it is legendary, feeling lighter than air, and yet being resistant to and warding off damage from the elements or simply blunt force alike, thus being highly sought after by royals, nobles, and wealthy individuals from all over Ishgar for its unique properties, a small silk industry being established within Seven, though it, of course, operates within the values and confines of savantí morals and rules.


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    Official Re: Official Nations of Ishgar

    Post by Admin 23rd November 2020, 6:37 am



    Stella

    Capital: Meirge
    Largest City: Meirge
    Official Language: Ishgar with Stellae Accent (Real-World Equivalent - Scottish English)
    Government: Mining Guilds - Oligarchy
    Head of State: Chief Executive Officer of the United Mining Companies
    Official Representative: Chief Marketing Manager
    Official Governing Body: Conglomerate of Mining Guilds
    Head of Military: Chief Security Officer
    Population: ~7,500,000
    Wizard Population: ~10%
    Economy: Poor
    Currency: Jewel

    Description:
    Stella is a rugged land, dry, mountainous, and rocky terrain covering all of the nation and stretching from Bosco in the West to Iceberg in the North and East all the way to the coast and the border to Joya in the south, giving little room for much greenery or plantlife, apart from abundantly present red moss, appropriately dubbed “Bloodrust”, which covers the rocks and mountains on Stella in great quantities, to grow. Its terrain, however, is not Stella’s only defining feature. The sky, at most times, is blanketed in grey smoke, the normally frequent rains replaced by an acidic and dirty tincture that, along with ash and dust, seems to rain down nigh constantly on the cities, towns, and people of this once proud nation.

    Stella is one of the oldest countries to exist on Ishgar, historically playing a large role in Ishgarian politics due to its naturally central location as well as the fact that its earth is extraordinarily rich in all manners of precious resources, and in fact, contains the highest concentration of precious materials in all of Ishgar. Gems, minerals, ores, and even naturally occurring lacrima crystals can be found deep in the earth and their extraction, refining, as well as export have, for the longest time, constituted the vast majority of Stella’s economy with Bellum, Bosco, Ca-Elum, and Minstrel traditionally being the largest buyers. It comes to no surprise that Stella lives, and has always lived, off of the mining business, many a war being fought over control of the land, though the mountainous terrain paired with the ferocity of the country’s inhabitants have, to this day, always beaten back any invading force.

    Their fall from greatness, however, originated from within their own society. As the mining business rose to become more and more prevalent, other industries were abandoned, more and more people joining the mining guilds of Stella, organizations with the goal to purchase land within the resource-rich nation and exploit the natural treasures of the earth for as much of a profit as possible, in order to grab a piece of the pie. As the guilds grew larger, though, they naturally grew in wealth, influence, and power in Stellae society, eventually taking over functions of local governments like policing and administration, before banding together and joining in a mega-corporation called the “United Mining Companies”, an organization made up of the collective of all-powerful and influential mining guilds in Stella, which, when joined together, would replace the national government in its entirety, effectively taking over all of the nation and all of its functions. The mining guilds had long been accused of corruption and intolerable working conditions for the regular members of those guilds, the workers and miners that extracted the resources that made the mining guilds what they were, but by paying off, promoting, or intimidating the right people, the UMC has proven quite adept at avoiding explosive unrest, and, as time went on and their grip on the nation strengthened, gradually transforming Stella into a police state, a mountainous dystopia where the average person has little more purpose to the system than work and make the higher-ups money.

    Thus Stella has become the nation it is today: A nation dotted by mines, factories, steel mills, foundries, and refineries that never sleep and continuously release their toxic wastes into the once clear skies and waters of the land, the smell of oil, coal, and smoke filling the air everywhere one goes. The cities are reminiscent of machines more than living spaces, steel and iron dominating the dirty, dimly lit alleys. The biggest city, a massive complex of industry called Meirge, “Rust”, located in the south of Stella at the coast, serves as the seat of the UMC’s Headquarters and thus constitutes a pseudo-capital for the nation. Security forces patrol the streets at nigh constant to make sure that the workers don’t step out of line, enforcing harsh schedules and rules. The only option the people of Stella have, however, is to work for the United Mining Companies, as they hold the monopoly on all industry within the nation, or try to escape the country’s closed borders, though that will be no easy task, those individuals risking harsh fines, torturous punishments, or worse. Mages among the population of Stella are often readily recruited into the security forces, enticed with better living conditions and pay, to create a monopoly on powerful wizards within the nation in order to nip any hope of resistance in the bud and ensure the continued dominance of the mining guilds. Magicless workers, on the other hand, have no such option, and their only hope to escape their dull, repetitive, and exhausting days is to work hard enough to earn a promotion. As such, hard work, discipline, and compliance are virtues valued above all others in Stellae society, with the average person in Stella embracing the collectivism ingrained in its national consciousness and accepting being little more than a cog in a machine.


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    Official Re: Official Nations of Ishgar

    Post by Admin 23rd November 2020, 6:38 am



    Ca-Elum

    Capital: Port Robinshire
    Largest City: Port Robinshire
    Official Language: Ishgar with Elumish accent (Real-World Equivalent - British English)
    Government: Absolute Monarchy - Kingdom
    Head of State: King / Queen of Ca-Elum
    Official Representative: Royal Ambassador
    Official Governing Body: King / Queen of Ca-Elum
    Head of Military: Vice Admiral
    Population: ~75,000,000
    Wizard Population: ~3%
    Economy: Rich
    Currency: Jewel

    Description:
    With the fall of Enca’s claim on tourism due to Sin’s overbearing shadow, Ca-Elum rose along with Midi as a place those looking to vacation or retire could do so in the utmost of safety. The islands that make up Ca-Elum are lush and exotic, with seemingly unending beaches ringing each landmass in pale tan sands and exciting waves. With those beaches come bustling port cities crowded with boats and commerce. If you are looking for hard to get items from even the most unforgiving of countries, you’re likely to find them in a marketplace in one of the many port cities, though the best bet is within Ca-Elum’s huge seaside capital, Port Robinshire. Since it is the largest port for both the country’s own ships and visitors’ vessels, it’s the first stop for many vendors hoping to make a ton of Jewel. Since Port Robinshire also holds the castle of the monarchs and the head of the military, the port is highly policed and safe, but also means goods purchased there are more expensive due to high taxes.

    Inland on the larger islands, small industrial villages are situated among the rivers and trees. The average Ca-Elum native is more likely to reside outside the tourist traps and city shops, where the focus is more on running the country’s primary source of income, trading, and all the associated facets that come with the business. Humongous warehouses contain the stock the country has either made or purchased from all other countries for resale and distribution, and those that aren’t constantly monitoring the arrival and departure of orders are driving large trucks full of product to and from the various docks. Those that are not involved directly in the trading are busy building sturdy ships and other metal work, utilizing the abundant, naturally occurring volcanoes as their forges. Ca-Elumians craft the highest quality weapons of all sorts from ores imported from Stella, as well as the steel plating, forged armor, and other parts required to build ships. While the weapons are taken to the warehouses, the ship materials are transported to the nation’s slipways and drydocks.

    The main jewel in the monarch’s crown is Ca-Elum’s pure, uncontested naval might. In their shipyards, transport vessels and warships alike are constructed en masse, offering a fleet for either avenue. To ensure the safety of the islands, there is a constant patrol of fully armed battleships full of trained military sailors, and several naval bases situated amongst the volcanic islands and oases. If all the fleets were to sail at once, it is likely the ocean’s entire horizon would be filled with ships as powerful as some of the strongest mages and nearly approaching something as advanced as technology Bosco could dream up.

    The transport ships are ultimately the keys to Ca-Elum’s wealth and prosperity. Their smart business practices and the other countries’ reliance on them for goods keep the castle vaults full of gold and Jewel. Three fourths of their income is from trading goods and transport. Using a massive fleet of highly secure and sturdy ships, they not only export their expertly forged weapons abroad, but also offer contract services to ship goods between all the countries. To make sure every country receives their orders, a navy ship or two is dispatched to escort it on its deliveries. A shipment has never failed to reach its destination, not even to Enca through its treacherous, monster-filled waters. They also use their own ships to offset costs for imports they require, minimizing expenditure and maximizing profits. The rest of Ca-Elum’s income is from tourism and taxing the vendors in the markets.

    Overall, Ca-Elum is nearly a paradise that simply thrives. The citizens practically worship the current Queen for the prosperity and security she has brought the islands. Job opportunities are plentiful and unemployment is nearly non-existent with the military, warehouses, shipyards, shops, hotels, and blacksmiths always needing more help in the booming economy. Even though relatively few mages are born to the island nation, the people are fully protected by the continent’s and possibly the world’s largest navy. All necessary goods that the nation can’t provide for itself are shipped in with its own ships at a discount and the cost is recouped with their expansive trading with all the countries of Ishgar and beyond. The Queen might rule with an iron fist, but she certainly knows what she’s doing, and her hard-working citizens support her and their country gladly.

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    Official Re: Official Nations of Ishgar

    Post by Admin 23rd November 2020, 6:38 am



    Joya

    Capital: Capital Chorda
    Largest City: Felidae City
    Official Language: Ishgar with Genusa Accent (Real-World Equivalent - Canadian English)
    Government: Tribal Oligarchy - Federation
    Head of State: Apex Chieftain
    Official Representative: High Priestess
    Official Governing Body: Clan Conclave
    Head of Military: Beta Chieftain
    Population: ~22,000,000
    Wizard Population: ~25%
    Economy: Decent
    Currency: Jewel

    Description:
    Home to anthropomorphs of all species, these energetic people welcome all who cross into their country with open arms. It’s unclear what caused the humans of this country to mutate to have small animalistic characteristics such as ears, tails, and claws, but what these people don’t have explanations for, they have simply explained away in a variety of colorful myths. The myths are as varied as the environments within Joya, reflecting the uniqueness of each clan and the hardships and triumphs they face.

    From the highest, snow-covered mountains to the lowest, jungle-covered wetlands, anthropomorphs are gathered into clans by species and largely govern themselves. Each clan, and there are many, has a chieftain and a priestess who are responsible for law and order, as well as practicing their beliefs and the preservation of their cultures, which can be quite different from each other. Some clans are peaceful and open to outsiders, others are hostile and very much closed, and still more fall to varying degrees in between. There is a solidarity between all the clans, though, as the leaders of each come together once a month to discuss how best to care for and protect Joya as a whole, as well as see to the needs of each of the clans so that none will become weak and perish. Also, once every twenty years, they come together and seek their individual gods’ wills to nominate candidates from each clan for Apex Chieftain. After partaking in a grueling physical and mental test deep within the Obsidian Caverns beneath the country, whoever emerges first has been deemed worthy of the position. The Apex Chieftain’s job is to keep all the clans in line with unbiased decisions, unquestionable strength, and unshakable diplomacy. Each clan follows a similar ritual on a smaller scale to elect individual clan Chieftains.

    Unlike the models of most countries, the capital is more like a small village than a bustling city. Joya’s government is small and is often on the move, constantly visiting and hearing from the numerous clans. Chorda is situated at the top of one of the few mountains with mild weather, offering the village natural security. Its small size makes it easy for Hunters, Joya’s term for mages, to protect its leader and his associates when they do reside there, as well as keep it free of threats during Clan Conclave. Chorda is the only non-individual clan that is unfriendly to outsiders, since it serves as the heart for the country’s most private and weighty matters.

    On the opposite end of the scale, Felidae City is absolutely massive and accepts anyone and everyone into its colorful, lively folds. It serves as the face of the country and is ultimately responsible for Joya’s friendly and jovial reputation. While all species of anthros join up here in the melting pot, the highest concentration are those with the ever expressive feline ears and tails. There’s always a restaurant, tea house, or pub open with a party going on, making it a popular destination for the younger folk of Ishgar looking for a walk on the wild side. But as with any big city capitalizing on fun, vices, and friendly faces, there’s a darker side skulking in its shadows. It’s a popular place for pickpockets, conmen, and other unsavory folks, all looking to lure the naive into their clutches. It is also the hub for Joya’s secret but thriving eco-terrorism cells and mercenary job boards. It’s a risk to trek to Felidae City to hire a Joyan, but it is often worth it for their natural talents.

    In terms of economy, Joya exports primarily naturally occurring spices and herbs from renewable resources. Due to the diverse environments and the way they overlap, some of Ishgar’s rarest and most prized spices, herbs, and flowers can be found in Joya. Expensive restaurants will pay any price to acquire exotic flavors for themselves, and it’s said that herbs from Montogrega Swamp and Hephrina Mountain can cure almost any ailment if ground and mixed correctly. The combination of the three resources make the most delicious teas that are prized among all tea enthusiasts. Most clans make it a point to go out and gather flowers, plants, and seeds to bundle and sell to outsiders through trade posts in Felidae City, or in the case of the more questionable plants, the black market. Otherwise, they hunt, gather, farm, and fish, enjoying an easy, laid-back self-reliance that is rare among the countries. They use the income from their exports to fuel individual clan goals and desires, or blow it all partying in the city with the outsiders.

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    Official Re: Official Nations of Ishgar

    Post by Admin 23rd November 2020, 6:39 am



    Iceberg

    Capital: Frostgard
    Largest City: Frostgard
    Official Language: Iser (Real-World Equivalent - Old Norse)
    Government: Free Tribes
    Head of State: N/A
    Official Representative: Speaker of the Ting
    Official Governing Body: Ting
    Head of Military: N/A
    Population: ~12,500,000
    Wizard Population: ~90%
    Economy: Poor
    Currency: Eyrir

    Description:
    Iceberg is a nation aptly named, called so due to its extremely inhospitable terrain and temperatures that, independent of any season or external influence, remain far below freezing 24/7, 365 days a year, temperatures dropping off more and more the further north you venture, with the far north being unsuited for almost any kind of life. The name “Iceberg” itself is a colloquial name that, over time, has become the term used to refer to this nation of ice and snow, though the citizens of Iceberg, a people calling themselves Iser, “people of Ice”, call this nation Iserheim. The natives of Iceberg, despite the nation’s extreme weather and apparent inhospitality, are extremely proud of their country and love Iceberg for what it is, revering it as their ancestral homeland, the soil and earth that has given birth to and sustained their people for generations. Despite this, Iceberg has not always been a nation of arctic likeness, once experiencing seasons like any other nation. A diverse terrain, like the lush river valleys, great plains, swamps, and forests of the Iceberg lowlands or the rocky, snow-capped peaks of the mountains to the north used to be common sight, the people of Iceberg still talking of the golden age before the calamity that has befallen this once mighty part of the world. An unfortunate, yet unclear and mysterious event is what led to Iceberg’s downfall, a cataclysm turning it into the frozen hell that it is today.

    Iceberg has long been a part of Ishgar looked upon with cautious curiosity, people of many other nations telling stories of the Iser and their mages, which have become known as “Vikings”, fearsome warriors from Iceberg that traveled the entirety of Ishgar, who have, over centuries, raided coastlines as far south as the furthest island of Enca and as far west as the very edge of Ca-Elum, some even claiming that their legendary and daring raids, which, along with their unique and intricate religion have been documented in stories and narratives the Iser people refer to as “Sagas”, have extended all the way to continents besides Ishgar long before other continents were even known to most Ishgarians. Portrayed as a hardy, unyielding, and powerful people, Iser men and women have always done their very best to fit the stereotypes that exist about them, making them not only mages and warriors of excellent quality, but also fabled conquerors, their territory once stretching well into modern-day Pergrande, Bellum, Bosco, and Seven. As with all things, however, their time of supremacy in the northern part of Ishgar would come to an end once Pergrande established its own imperialist ambitions in the region, and while the Iser people fought hard, they had little to offer against the sheer numbers and combined military might of what had already become the most powerful force on the continent of Ishgar, eventually being defeated and entirely annexed by Pergrande, becoming part of its ever-growing empire over a millennia ago. Although the Pergrandian rulers were initially met with much contempt and widespread resistance, the relationship between the two opposing sides stabilized through skillful diplomacy and benevolent rule, the people of Iceberg, while stopping their raids, enjoying a centuries-long period of peace, prosperity, and significant development.

    All of this was put to an end around 500 years ago, however. Simultaneously with the event that transformed Sin into the volcanic land of flame and devastation that it is today, a similar event would occur within Iceberg, though the flames and magma bursting from the earth would here be replaced with hurricane-force winds and a freezing cold that extinguished all life around it. These arctic winds swiftly crept across a majority of the nation, covering Iceberg in ice and snow dozens, if not hundreds of feet in thickness, freezing everything in its path, this apocalyptic event swallowing almost the entirety of Iceberg, killing millions and forever transforming it into the frigid wasteland it is now. To this day, it is unclear what exactly caused these twin catastrophes, with speculations running wild and naming causes such as a failed terraforming experiment, a magical superweapon, or a wicked ritual. While ultimately, the exact origin of this event is unknown, it is clear that it originated somewhere in the northern mountains of Iceberg, a remote location even before the catastrophe, the northern gulf, along with the surrounding ocean, freezing over entirely, turning it into one of the most dangerous seas in all of Earthland. While this catastrophe is something that dominates the national consciousness of Iceberg, coming to be known as “Fimbulvinter”, it is also one of the two contributing factors to the shift in Pergrandian attitude towards magic, the empire abandoning it’s Iser citizens and retreating from the nation, now a wasteland, and leaving them to the harsh and extreme consequences of the Fimbulvinter, leaving some to speculate that this event had something to do with Pergrandian mages, though this is unconfirmed.

    Still, while Pergrande entered a state of on and off conflict with most nations on the continent of Ishgar through the events that would follow, Iceberg has always retained its friendly attitude towards the empire, viewing them as their lost brothers and sisters, most Pergrandians, despite their anti-magic attitude, sharing this view. Still, for the government of Pergrande, the Iser people would constitute a problem to their anti-magic policies, as most people within Iceberg are mages, most non-mages perishing in the unforgiving perpetual winter, with Pergrande simply leaving Iceberg alone for the most part, preferring to guard its border with the nation and stay within their own territory. Still, these days most Iser people live close to Lake Kyrie, the massive body of water in Ishgar’s midst, and the estuary of Ishgar’s largest river, River Elfyr, or close to the borders of other nations, where the temperatures approach a degree that can be called normal, avoiding the hinterlands or the northern regions of Iceberg as much as possible. River Elfyr and subsequently Lake Kyrie are mostly fed by the melting ice and snow that run through the thick, frozen blankets over Iceberg’s terrain in underground rivers, these facts being responsible for the creation of the massive lake, bordering on the size of an ocean, within Ishgar’s midst in the first place.

    Iceberg’s capital city, Frostheim, is located below the monstrous waterfall where River Elfyr transitions into the largest lake in Ishgar, huts, longhouses, and mead halls crowding the shores of Lake Kyrie in this area. Frostheim is where, once every year, the leaders of the free tribes of Iceberg convene in a gathering called a “Ting”, where matters of national interest are debated, though every tribe makes decisions for themselves. As most Iser people couldn’t agree on a form of government, paralyzed by their astonishing losses, after the great collapse of their nation, their society regressed to pre-empire standards, with most of the population splitting up into tribes that now inhabit the cold wastes or the more temperate border regions, trying to make the best of their situation, with a true structured government or any governing body failing to be formed to this day, and while Iser people operate on the same general laws and moral principles dictated by a culture of mutual respect as warriors, conflict between the tribes has, in the past, been inevitable and will likely remain so for a while, with isolated battles between two tribes being the most common of occurence, though larger scale internal conflicts bordering on civil war have not been unheard of since the beginning of the Fimbulvinter, most Iser people rejecting the idea of putting their survival in the hands of a single leader in the aftermath of the Fimbulvinter, rejecting things like a monarchy in favor of self-governance and self-reliance, the closest thing to any unified voice for the Iser people being the speaker of the Ting, an honorable position bestowed by the heads of all tribes in Iceberg to only the most impartial and fair via a vote. The speaker of the Ting is tasked with keeping order during the days, or even weeks that a Ting might last as well as overseeing and enforcing decisions made by the Ting. The speaker of the Ting is usually a mage and warrior of incredible power and skill, possessing the prowess to back any decision made by the Ting up, by force, if necessary.

    Based on these facts as specified above, Iceberg has little in terms of an economy. Agriculture and production of goods is virtually impossible, with most of Iceberg’s natural resources being hidden under ever-regrowing sheets of thick ice and snow, the nation being too cold for most crops. Most of the people of Iceberg hunt or fish for the food they need, with others resorting to the old tactic of raids and piracy, though on a much smaller scale, while some sell their services as warriors, mercenaries, and guards all over Ishgar to make a living. As such, most resources Iceberg comes up with are used to sustain its already small population with little imports or exports at all, outside of the occasional trade where possible. Similarly to its government, Iceberg does not possess a cohesive military force, though it is safe to assume that every able-bodied adult is at least a trained fighter, if not a skillful warrior, the population of Iceberg historically rallying together to beat back any invader with ferocious force and determination, legendary warriors referred to as “Berserkers” that defeated entire armies of invading enemies appearing in the sagas of Iceberg. Each tribe, however, is still led by their own leader, and there is nothing resembling a unified and accepted structure of command or hierarchy amongst the men and women of Iceberg.


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    Official Re: Official Nations of Ishgar

    Post by Admin 23rd November 2020, 6:41 am



    Embrant

    Capital: Valos
    Largest City: Valos
    Official Language: Engua (Real-World Equivalent - Portuguese)
    Government: Oligarchy
    Head of State: Avoz of the Inxame
    Official Representative: Aixador
    Official Governing Body: Inxame
    Head of Military: Picador
    Population: 100,000
    Wizard Population: 5%
    Economy: Decent
    Currency: Joia

    Description:
    Embrant’s history sounds like something out of legend, but research carried out on the subject matter has proven that the information is about 90% true. It is said that long before the nations of Earthland coalesced into what they are today, a group of slaves and outcasts fled from a certain ancient powerful family in the region that is known as Bosco today. One of the heirs of that family, who had behaved himself very evilly, was stabbed to death by these deserters in an act of revenge. Fearing the wrath of his family, they fled. It is believed that their journey took them into the forests of Seven, but they were not safe there, as many beasts preyed on them now and then. During their sojourn through Seven, one of them, known as Embrant, who was not considered very relevant among the outcasts, performed a good deed for a powerful insectoid entity. The details of this deed have been lost to time, but what is ascertained is that the entity was so pleased with Embrant, that she gave him some eggs, instructing him that if he protected them and allowed them to hatch, they would do him a lot of good. Embrant was up for carving a niche in Seven and living there, but most of the others were fed up with the magical forest, and wanted to leave as soon as possible. Overriding his decision due to their numbers, they struck off north-west, as they were already a good ways into the forest, with the intention of getting to the seashore. The outcasts decided to settle there and start a new life.

    Life there was not as easy as they had anticipated. Apart from the wild, untamed lands of Seven on one side, and the large body of water on the other, fighting began among the groups as they separated into factions, as the struggle for a supreme leader began. Tired of all the ways in which he had been overlooked, and the constant animosities, Embrant separated himself from them and returned to the forest. He was scorned as he left, with the others stating that he would die in the forest or come back to them crawling on his knees. In solitude, he took care of his eggs and cared for them, until they hatched into small insects of varying shapes and sizes. There he stayed with them, for a long time. At the beach, after about five years, when everything was finally taking shape, the outcasts were suddenly attacked from the sea by a brother of the murdered heir, who had caught wind of their location, and had come with the intention to take vengeance. The outcasts fought as well as they could, but they were killed or rounded up and captured. As the captors began executing them as brutally as they could, Embrant returned, with an army of massive arthropods.

    The brother and his men were destroyed to the last one, and everyone cheered Embrant as a hero. But he had changed. He was more aloof now and seemed to have the power to speak to insect life. He ordered those that would follow him to make ready for a pilgrimage away from the shores where they dwelt, to a land that his insect friends were preparing for them, where they would be safe from attackers, or at least would be able to spot them coming. And so it was that Embrant led his people on an exodus into the sea, riding on the backs of giant bugs. They eventually came to a strange island, which seemed to be made of soil, as well as some organic chitinous substance. Here, Embrant disembarked, and here they dwelt.

    The insects that had been gifted to Embrant had many capabilities and grew quickly. There were some which could eat just about anything, and their bodies would change to a similar composition of their major diet. It is said that these insects would travel to nearby islands and eat as much soil as possible, then return to Embrant’s island. Their bodies would become soil-like, capable of growing plant life, and when they died, their bodies were grafted to the original landmass, thus making their island grow in size. Other insects served as protectors of the little island, capable of fighting on land, sea, or air, while others were used as animal labor. The people who followed Embrant learned to raise these insects as one would raise farm animals, and the insects became tame around humans.

    Embrant lived to be very old, and when he died, his powers of arthropod control were gifted to the eldest of his ten children, who became the foundations of the noble houses of Embrant, and named the country after its founder. Over many years, millennia even, the land of Embrant grew into the nation the people of Earthland know it to be. For much of recent history, it was a strange place that explorers avoided, but in recent years, the floating island of Embrant opened its doors, for the first time, to the outside world.

    Embrant is a strange place, a large island made up of soil like matter and chitinous “rocks”. These “rocks” make a sort of wall around each of Embrant’s major cities, serving as a line of defense against attackers. The land is fertile enough, growing an assortment of plant life, a lot of which is edible. However, large forests are not common; in fact, they are next to non-existent in Embrant. Still, there are many trees that grow in cultivated areas and in the wild; they are not populous enough to be termed ‘forests’, though. The land is mostly plain, but a mountain (which is the original landmass that the island was built around) stands proudly at the back of Embrant’s capital city, Valos. Smaller “hills” can be found dotting the landscape, all made of the strange chitinous, yet mineral-like matter that makes the walls around the cities.

    Due to the landmass growing faster than population spread, about half of Embrant can be considered wildlands, with feral animals scraping out a living however they can. Many of them are arthropods (insects, arachnids, crustaceans, centipedes, and the like) and they are very territorial. In the past, there had been moves to bring animals from the continent to increase the diversity of the fauna on Embrant. Some of it was successful, and some were not. Thus, insects are not the only creatures found in the wild, but other variants of Earthland animals, which have evolved and adapted to survive Embrant’s climate. Embrant enjoys an island climate, which hardly ever gets cold. As a result, it makes for a good tourist attraction with its natural wonders and friendly weather. There are stormy seasons, though, with a lot of wind and rain. The wind can be rather fierce; although it is not a regular occurrence, there have been recordings of gale-force winds sweeping from the wide ocean onto the island. All in all, it can be a nice place to plan that vacation, but beware of its dangers.

    The culture of Embrant revolves around the strange, varied creatures known as “Mirables”. These arthropods have many functions, and they differ in shape and size. Some are reared for their meat, some for armor material and clothing, some for dye and pigments, paper, building materials, and others are used for warfare, labor, and transportation. It is not an exaggeration to say that the Mirables can be used for almost anything required by humans. These insects, therefore, play a major role in Embrant’s culture, as almost all their civilization revolves around them. You can expect to see the creatures all around, walking, crawling, and flying about the island, as they and the human inhabitants live out their lives.

    Among the Mirables, a certain species called the Velhos are considered by most of the Embrantes as the most important. These creatures live to very old age (between two hundred to four hundred years) and are prized for their crystalline hearts, which are a form of lacrima. These lacrima hearts are used primarily as the major power source in Embrant, and can last for a very long time without diminishing, but depending on the major diet of the Velho from which it is harvested, the lacrima heart may possess other abilities (such as gravity and electromagnetic manipulation). It has been observed that the lacrima hearts are more powerful (and thus more precious) the longer the Velho lives. Thus, they are well taken care of, and the hearts are extracted only after death. To kill one of these Velhos is a high felony, punishable by death. The people of Embrant respect and take care of the Mirables, which love and help them in turn. It is common to see funeral ceremonies held with a lot of emotion for Mirables that die, which have lived or worked in a certain family.

    Called “Embrantes” by themselves and foreigners, the people of this strange land come with dark hair and light olive skins. They are usually a practical, cheerful race, but can be a little nationalistic, as they believe they are blessed divinely for having the Mirables. The average Embrante is agrarian in occupation, raising the Mirables (mostly the edible ones) or growing acres of edible crops. Accessible major cities have interpreters who can be employed to act as travel guides and interpret the Engua language, though most Embrantes are fluent in the common tongue of Earthland, or at least Fiore. Their life is decent, and most of them are satisfied with their stations. Seeing as their land cannot be mined for metals and gems, they are usually interested in jewelry. Interestingly, the higher echelon of their society is made up of scientists and philosophers, who constantly work to discover as much as they can of the lacrima hearts, and all the abilities that can be utilized by them. Science is an honored profession among the Embrantes, and while their technology is not as advanced as Bosco, their weird “contraptions” are a wonder to outsiders. This causes some culture shock on both sides: for Embrantes who step onto the continent, and for the outsider who visits Embrant. Many consider their technology to be repulsive, as their tools usually comprise of arthropod parts, both living and deceased. Still, it gets the job done, and the Embrantes are fine with that. Note that these people have sharp mouths and wits, and while they may not readily flare up at someone insulting their way of life, they usually have a barbed response for any impertinence given them. Although magic is very uncommon, mages are held in awe and wonder and are therefore respected, as they can hold their own against the scientists and warriors of Embrant with their magic power.

    Embrant has three major cities: Valos, which is the largest and the capital city; Maravilla, a city of scientists and thinkers; and Batal, the military capital of Embrant. Valos is built at the base of Embrant’s singular mountain, Mount Valos. The mountain, and later the city, was named after the first son of the island’s founder, Valos. It is a bustling city, thriving with all sorts of people from various walks of life. The city of Valos takes a semi-circular shape, divided into districts. The Market District is the outermost and is the first place people enter once they come in through the gates. Separated from the Market District by a wall is the Noble District, where people of influence and import dwell. The ten noble houses of Embrant have their residences at the base of Mount Valos. Above the city, built into the rock of the mountain, is the Royal Fortress, where the Inxame holds court.

    Maravilla is the city of Science, called the “Flashing City” by some, due to the lights and sounds generated by the many experiments carried out there. Among the three major cities of Embrant, it boasts of the least amount of Mirables wandering about. The city is occupied by scientists, philosophers, and chitin crafters, as well as other professions that cater to human necessities. Chitin crafters are what passes off as smiths in Embrant, fashioning Mirables chitin and carapaces into tools and weapons. Some of this equipment is outfitted with some form of cybernetic enhancements developed in Embrant, to enable them to function properly. The cybernetics are considered outdated among more technologically advanced societies, but for Embrant, it works, so it stays. Maravilla is well protected, having a crystalline wall built around it, with sentry turrets, on high towers, that are made from lacrima hearts and Mirables parts. These turrets can fire energy beams over long distances, and can even hit targets in any direction at sea before they set foot on the island.

    Batal is an underground city, and the one which foreigners have the least chance of entering. It is actually a hive of Mirables, the fighting force of Embrant, which are directed by humans in chitin armor and wielding lacrima heart-powered weaponry. The city is located closest to the “apex of the island”, as it is expected that attacks are more likely to come from the mainland than the ocean. Nevertheless, Batal has many tunnels that open to different areas of the island, enabling military units to pass unseen by enemies to the points where they are most needed. Lights in Batal are generated using lacrima hearts, and despite its underground position, it is a vast city, teeming with life and activity.
    Outside these three cities, many Embrantes dwell in rural communities, often living close to the cities and enjoying the protection of their patron cities. A large community called Cabelo town dwells on the plain beneath which Batal is situated. It provides the underground city with the food they need, and although Cabelo has no walls, it is one of the best-protected communities due to its location. Further from the cities, one enters wild territory, where the weak are eaten and the strong survive. There are reports of feral Velhos occupying some areas of wildland, but they are always defended by a hive, and it is an almost impossible task trying to harvest their lacrima hearts. Those who manage to do so, however, find themselves in possession of the purest, most powerful forms of lacrima heart (as these feral Velhos feed on the lacrima hearts of deceased Velhos). While the Embrantes leave them alone for the most part, be careful how you go about hunting. Angry feral Mirables are not the only problem one would face to get such lacrima hearts. The wildlands are also populated by scavengers and outlaws from the cities, who would be more than happy to pry that valuable jewel off a corpse and make some mad money.

    Of recent, Embrant initiated diplomatic relations with other countries and has enough merchandise for trade. Seda, a material like silk, spun by some Mirables larvae, is of very high quality and is soft and durable. Also, they export lacrima hearts to interested countries, although the price is rather costly. Exportation of such highly valued items has been an advantage to their economy, and while they do not argue with anyone about their position on the prosperity hierarchy of Earthland, it is safe to say that the economy is a prospering, thriving one.

    The Inxame is the seat of government, comprising of ten worthy members of each noble house. Of the ten that make up the Inxame, the most powerful, influential, and patriotic is usually made the Avoz, while another member with similar characteristics becomes the Picador. It is believed that a ritual takes place in which the heart of the previous Avoz is removed and placed in the chest of the incumbent Avoz. The reason for this belief is that the Avoz, without fail, has telepathic authority over all the Mirables on Embrant (although feral ones can resist that power), even if they never demonstrated such powers before. The same applies to the Picador, although their own authority is limited to the military. Another fact that lends credence to the veracity of the ritual is the fact that the altruism and devotion of the Avoz and Picador to their people is absolute. It is said that the hearts implanted in their chests hold the wills of the ancient leaders to keep Embrant prosperous and safe. However, all this is conjecture, even among the Embrantes, as only the noble families guard the secret of the rites of passage very jealously.

    The Avoz dwells in the Royal Fortress, while the other members of the Inxame are allowed to move as they wish. However, important meetings have them summoned to the Royal Fortress for deliberations. The Inxame ride a special form of Mirables known as Ventos, which fly very quickly and are very hardy. This allows them to travel with ease to their major cities, or visit any other village or location on Embrant as they see fit. The Picador often dwells in Batal, and comes to Valos when summoned, by air, or an underground passage. One of the Inxame is usually designated as the “Prefeite” (Prefect) of Maravilla. The Prefeite is responsible for updating the Inxame on the research going on in Maravilla, and oversees all that happens in the Flashing City.

    The Inxame are the law in Embrant. Their words are not questioned by the common people. Even the noble houses can rarely override their decisions. However, it is very uncommon, almost impossible, even, to see an Inxame unloved by their people. The Avoz can depose a member of the Inxame if their actions are at variance with the prosperity of Embrant, but this seldom happens. A set of rules has been drafted, a Constitution, so to speak, that guides the Embrantes. Foreigners are expected to get acquainted with and adhere to the laws of Embrant, or face the consequences of their lawbreaking. Although they are not worshipped as gods, the Inxame are revered by the Embrantes.

    The Picador is the commander in chief of the forces of Embrant. The army is made up mostly of Mirables, with human officers in charge of various units. However, the Embrant army also has squads of human soldiers, trained for special operations and missions. The basic land units of the Mirables look like ants. They are about four feet from the top of their head to the ground. They have durable exoskeletons, and are the basic shock troops or melee combatants. It is common to see Embrantes riding them into battle. There are other special land units with different purposes: some burrow into the ground to launch surprise attacks, some create webs and sticky goo to ensnare enemies, while others can spray a powerful acid at their enemies. Aerial units are agile flyers, and most of them are armed with stingers. Some are capable of firing poisonous darts to cripple enemies, while others have scythe-like claws that can make short work of mundane metal. Naval units are split into two categories: there are those that swim on the surface of the water. They can be equipped with turrets, and some are large enough to transport large numbers of humans and Mirables. The second category usually travels underwater, and are used for subterfuge, stealth, and infiltration.

    Many Embrantes work with the Mirables, and see them not as pets or servants, but companions. They have names for their comrades in battle, and serve in every unit the Mirables serve in. The human portion of Embrant’s army may not have the natural weapons and defense their arthropod comrades have, but they are armed with lacrima-heart powered weaponry, which fire blasts like energy guns, or can create weapons and shields made of energy for close-quarter combat. They can also throw powerful lacrima bombs, and their weapons can interfere with a lot of state of the art technology that utilizes electromagnetic concepts. In the way of armor, the Embrantes soldiers are protected by chitin armor which can defend against attacks very effectively.

    The Avoz (Voice): Leader of the Inxame and thus head over all Embrant. They are always devoted to their country, and are loved by their people. The Avoz has the ability to psychically interact with all tame Mirables, and lives in the Royal Fortress of Valos.
    The Inxame (Swarm): An oligarchy of ten noble house members, who make up the ruling body of Embrant. All leaders of Embrant are picked from the Inxame. The Inxame holds court in the Royal Fortress.
    The Picador (Stinger): Military commander of Embrant with the ability to telepathically command military Mirables. They are also loved by their people, and are well trained in military tactics and arts. They are naturally the ruler of the underground stronghold of Batal.
    The Prefeite (Prefect): Overlord of Maravilla. They are in charge of technological developments and advancements, and must always have the good of Embrant in mind, no matter whatever projects they wish to work on.
    Other leaders such as leaders of various occupational guilds exist, but do not have official titles.

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    Official Re: Official Nations of Ishgar

    Post by Admin 23rd November 2020, 6:42 am



    Dongxia

    Capital: Qian Dao Gong
    Largest City: Chun Zai Qiu
    Official Language: Dongxian (Real-World Equivalent - Chinese)
    Government: Monarchy
    Head of State: The August Longdi
    Official Representative: The Zi Shi
    Official Governing Body: Liang Se Ting
    Heads of Military: The Jin Guan
    Population: 15,000,000
    Wizard Population: 50%
    Economy: Very Rich
    Currency: Quan

    Description:
    It is believed that the first settlers to settle in Dongxia may have been travelers from Midi (supported by the fact that it is due west of Midi), but like many things about Dongxia, it is probably conjecture. What is known is that the settlers of Dongxia split into two tribes: the western Huo in the mountains, and the eastern Shui in the plains. For a while, each tribe grew and prospered, but soon they began jostling for resources, and more than once, a leader would arise from either tribe and attempt unification, which would result in long, bitter and bloody wars. Then came the Years of Blood. Almost simultaneously, two rulers arose, who had the solid backing of their people. They plunged Dongxia into a century and a half of war. It is believed that close to 60% of Dongxia’s population perished in the Years of Blood. The last battle of the Years of Blood was fought in the north-central region of Dongxia, led by the descendants of the original rulers. Both Huo and Shui recorded grave losses, but neither was willing to give in. Finally, the two generals met to engage in one-on-one combat. Both generals, too eager to win at whatever cost, used mystical powers beyond their knowledge and control. This resulted in a great hole created in the fabric of reality, and all sorts of curiosities and horrors began pouring in from the hole.

    With a new, undiscriminating enemy, the Huo and the Shui were forced to band together to fight for their lives, as their leaders were killed by the invaders. Despite fighting valiantly, the Dongxians could not best supernatural foes, and Dongxia would have probably been like Sin is now, if not that a great dragon with scintillating scales came through the portal, and put the demons to flight. Still, the energies gushing out of the portal threatened to destroy Dongxia. So the mighty dragon sealed the portal into the earth beneath, creating the Pool of Harmony. The demons which had entered Dongxia, on hearing that the portal had been closed, rallied and attacked the dragon and the Dongxians, in order to reopen the portal. Lending the Dongxians his power, the dragon empowered them to fight the demons; this event is known as the Battle of a Thousand Knives, as the Defenders of Dongxia (as they came to be called) numbered just about a thousand. They routed the demons and eradicated them, though it is said that a few demons still lurk in the Dongxian wilderness. The scintillating dragon, to protect the portal, elevated it with the surrounding lands, to make it a difficult target in case of another event of war. The Dongxians however had other plans. They persuaded the dragon to be their king, and built his palace on the floating rock. In honor of the Defenders of Dongxia, the dragon named his palace Qian Dao Gong, Thousand-Knives Palace. To appear more acceptable, the dragon took on human form, was named the August Longdi, and taught the people of Dongxia the values of harmony and the maintenance of balance in everything. With the coming of the Longdi, Dongxia's atmosphere became more magical, and the people became more attuned t magic, a sign of the increased level of enlightenment of the nation.

    That is the official story you'll see in the Dongxian archive, and maybe legend. What is certain is that at the end of the Years of Blood, about 2000 years ago, Qian Dao Gong was built, and the Dragon Emperor began his reign, a reign which hasn’t finished till now. Under his rule, the nation flourished once more, and while in the past, has had to repel invaders from its shores, Dongxia has never declared war on any nation, and according to the Longdi, never shall, as long as he rules. However, since the Longdi ascended to power in Dongxia, Dongxians were never encouraged to leave their homeland, and Dongxia never reached out to any other nation, though visitors were allowed. It is thus worrying that in the last 50 years or so, Dongxia has suddenly become more active in international relations. This sudden change can only be speculated on, but most countries look on it with suspicion.

    Dongxia takes up the entirety of a large island lying directly south of Caelum. The island slopes, reducing in altitude from the west, which is mountainous, to the lowlands and swamps in the east. The mountain region, which talks up roughly half of the island is called Huoyu, and the other lowland half of Dongxia is Shuiyu. Dongxia is well-watered with many rivers finding their source in the western mountains and flowing eastward. Forests are common, and the land is very rich with wildlife, with a number of magical and legendary creatures existing there, though nowhere near the scale of Seven. It is said that in Dongxi, normal animals can gain enlightenment and thus possess superpowers, due to the atmosphere of Dongxia having some magic qualities. This is the usual given explanation for the relatively high number of people with magic affinity in Dongxia. The mountains in western Dongxia are quite rich in metals, and there is petroleum to be drilled in the eastern lowlands, an incredible amount of petroleum. This has turned out to be the mainstay of Dongxia’s economy. With many a fertile plain, and mostly mild weather, Dongxia is believed to be blessed. One should however beware the Typhoon season, which comes towards year end. Storms almost infernal in ferocity blast across the islands. The unprepared who are caught in such storms usually never survive. Ruins of an era dating to before the reign of the Longdi can be found in remote regions in the mountains, or half or fully submerged beneath the swamps.

    The people of Dongxia are made up of two tribes: The Huo from Huoyu, the drier, mountainous western part of Dongxia, and the Shui from Shuiyu, made up of lowland plains and swamp forests. The Huo traditionally celebrate fire, have red as their traditional color, and are believed to be more expressive. They are accomplished engineers and wizards among them favor Requip magic. The Shui revere water, honor blue as their color, are traditionally believed to be more taciturn, and are highly skilled as mystical alchemists. A good number of present-day Dongxians don’t really stick to these traditions, so it’s difficult telling whether one of such is a Huo or a Shui, though Dongxians can tell by subtle accent differences. If there are any other clans or tribes, they are minorities, and are mostly descended from either the Huo or the Shui. Physically, there is little difference between a Huo and a Shui, at least to outsiders. Dongxians generally have long, straight dark hair, with blue, green and violet hair colors uncommon but not strange. Their skin tones range from bronze to porcelain, almost always with a yellow tint, and their eyes come in all shades of colors. Body hair, aside hair, beards and eyebrows, is very sparse. They are mostly average to short in height, and a six-foot person will be taller than most Dongxians. Anthropologists believe that Dongxians may be distantly related to Midians, due to a few phenotypic facial similarities. Generally, the average Dongxian is courteous, friendly and congenial, if a bit patronizing, and Dongxians see themselves as more enlightened than other Ishgaran peoples. Dongxians in diaspora are cordial as well, although people may be put off by their polite airs of superiority. Most outside people believe Dongxians are insidious, hiding a greater evil beneath their warmth and talk about harmony. But nothing has been proven. Maybe not yet.

    Dongxia looks like Wuxia married diesel-punkish alternate science fiction, with Wuxia being the dominant spouse, especially in aesthetics (think ancient Chinese with flying steampunk vehicles). Duality, balance and harmony are considered to be the most important aspects of Dongxian culture (the name Dongxia itself means ‘Winter-Summer’, and the flying-vehicle vs ancient-dress-and-architecture is another pointer at the duality of Dongxia). As a result, whether by conditioning, or there’s something in the water, most Dongxians exhibit one or two paradoxes in their behavior, e.g. an extrovert who is very shy around strangers, or a pacifist who is a master of ten martial arts. The yin-yang and eight trigrams are considered sacred, for they embody harmony. For the average Dongxian, the pinnacle representation of balance and harmony is the Dragon Emperor, the August Longdi, who alone has the honor in Dongxia of being called ‘August’. While they know he is not human, they, for the most part, accept his rule and revere him. Even his traditional attire, black armor under a white robe, celebrates the concept of duality. There are a number of secessionist cults who wish to overthrow him, but they are not too many, and as of yet, they have no means by which to get rid of the Longdi. Intermarriage between the Huo and the Shui is very common, and spouses tend to adopt whatever culture exists in the place where they settle, which isn’t too hard, given that Huo and Shui cultures are similar. Dongxians value education; basic education is free and compulsory, and all Dongxians are mostly literate in Dongxian. Whether they are literate in foreign languages is another matter, although there are a lot of schools and universities in Dongxia, some of which host foreign language studies

    Most Dongxians are comfortable at home, and so don’t travel out, but those that do tend to not give information about their home country easily (there are rumors of one or two people who spilled secrets, and vanished without a trace, but these are rumors). While they are a peaceful people, surprising numbers attend the military academies, and thus at least one-tenth of their population serves as a reserve army, which can be armed and armored comfortably by the state. Despite their apparent peaceful tendencies, it is rare to see a Dongxian who doesn’t practice a martial art, and in the imperial capital every year, a martial art festival, Festival of Earth, is held at the start of the new year. They also hold another festival focused on academics in the capital, Festival of Heaven, six months after the martial arts festival. These two festivals are the major celebrated holidays of Dongxia. A third festival, the Day of the Choosing is held when the Longdi chooses a new Zi Shi or Jin Guan, after the deaths or resignation of the previous ones. In the center of the Longdi’s palace is a strange white glowing pool, the Pool of Harmony, which no one is allowed to enter until the Day of the Choosing. On the day of the Choosing, selected candidates who have been in training for the vacant role will be submerged into the pool as a group, on their own volition. No one understands the selection process of the Harmony Pool, but the chosen candidate emerges with their eyes glowing, while the others will emerge unchanged.

    Although the glowing eyes are temporary, the only notable change in the behavior of the new member of the Longdi’s court is displayed in an ardent desire to see Dongxia prosper. This behavioral change has led some to believe that the Longdi mystically manipulates his subjects into being submissive, but it is just conjecture. The average Dongxian doesn’t like discussing such subjects. It is possible for one who enters the Harmony pool never to emerge again, but such a mishap is extremely rare, and considered a bad omen, should that happen. While there are a number of dangerous cults in the wilds, most Dongxians don’t have any particular religion, though some believe that the Longdi is their god, which is why some think Dongxia’s government form is theocratic. The Longdi does not demand worship from his subjects though. Dongxians place notable value on names, and usually name their children based on events that occurred around the time of the child’s birth, or their hopes for the child. An accomplished Dongxian will usually get a title that s/he is known by, usually grandiose in nature, and highlighting a feat or notable trait. More humorous titles may be pegged on people by their friends or colleagues.

    There are four real cities in Dongxia. The first is the mountain city of Huo Pen, the traditional capital of Huoyu before the Longdi’s unification of Dongxia. The second is the swamp city of Shuijing, Huo Pen’s equivalent in Shuiyu. The third city is Qian Dao Gong, the Palace of a Thousand Knives, also called the Imperial City, which is Dongxia’s political seat, and the stronghold of the Longdi. It is quite a wonder to behold because it is suspended high above the earth, almost in the clouds. It is believed to be held up there by either the powers of the Longdi or the Harmony Pool located in the center of the Longdi’s palace. It’s usually misty, and little clouds may form in the city, due to its altitude, yet the inhabitants suffer no ill effects caused by high altitude like thin air, due to the protective power of the magic keeping the city afloat. Qian Dao Gong is mostly populated by members of the Liang Se Ting (members of the Royal Court), their retainers and family members, and half of the standing army with their families, with the other half distributed among the major cities. It also houses all the foreign embassies to be found in Dongxia. Qian Dao Gong is located in the north, between Huoyu and Shuiyu, and can be reached by flying transports from the other three cities, or by anyone with the powers of flight. Enchantments prevent teleportation into, or out of Qian Dao Gong, though teleportation within it is allowed.

    To the direct south of the Imperial City is the fourth city, Chun Zai Qiu, the “Spring in Autumn”. Chun Zai Qiu is the economic capital of Dongxia, and is a melting pot of everything Dongxian, with some districts dedicated to foreigners who have settled there and want to show off their culture. Easily the largest city of Dongxia, it reaches the foothills of Huoyu, and even touches the bays of Shuiyu. It has two major ports, one in the east and the other in the south. It is said you can get anything you want in Chun Zai Qiu. Most of Dongxia’s population is concentrated in these four cities. There are towns and villages scattered here and there, including foundry towns and oil mining settlements but for the most part, the rest of Dongxia is wild land, allowing for easy hiding spots of the secessionist groups and cults of Dongxia, as well as lairs of hermits and other solitary folk. Strange things are rumored to happen in the wilds, so it’s best to go in groups if you must venture into the Dongxian wild.

    Dongxia’s economy is based strongly on high-quality petroleum, which is drilled and refined in Shuiyu, then used to power the Dongxian vehicles, or exported to many other nations. The metal mined in the mountains is not directly exported, except as machinery, aerial vehicles, and vehicle parts forged in the Huoyu foundries in the mountains; this contributes almost the same as petroleum to Dongxia’s export finances. They also export medicines, and Dongxian medicines are known for their incredible qualities. Agriculture is practiced well in Dongxia, but just enough to feed its population comfortably, and nothing is exported in the way of agricultural produce. Finally, Dongxia is celebrated for its schools, and sees a decent number of international students come to its shores to be educated in the higher institutions common in the four chief cities in this country. Crafts like smithing, textile working, and the likes are common, and Dongxian art is very distinct, although these are not exported, except for sale to tourists. Qian Dao Gong and Chun Zai Qui serve as notable tourist centers.

    Dongxia operates under a monarchy, but some believe it to be more accurately called a theocracy, because the Longdi isn’t human, and considered by some to be a god. The Longdi is assisted in decision making and implementation by the Hong Chen (Red Ministers) from Huoyu, and the Lan Chen (Blue Ministers) from Shuiyu. Together with the Jin Guan (head of military) and the Zi Shi (official national representative), these make up Dongxia’s central government body, the Liang Se Ting, or the Court of Radiant Colors.

    Concerning foreign relations, this is where the Zi Shi, the Purple Scholar, comes in. Chosen in a similar way to the Jin Guan, the Zi Shi is the chief diplomat of Dongxi, although many nations are convinced that she is a glorified spy. The other diplomats who are not selected by the Harmony Pool to be the Zi Shi serve as ambassadors to other nations or heads of departments in the Foreign Bureau Offices in Dongxia. If the Zi Shi isn’t abroad, she is always found in the Foreign Bureau Office in Qian Dao Gong. Due to the Zi Shi’s perceived machinations, most of the other Ishgaran nations are worried that Dongxia knows more about them than they know about her. But this cannot be proven, and the Zi Shi has never broken any national laws, although any bargaining attempted with the Zi Shi usually ends in the foreign diplomat being manipulated into agreeing to policies that heavily favor Dongxia. Even though always surrounded by highly trained bodyguards, every Zi Shi is a well-trained fighter, and is believed to possess uncanny mental powers. As a result, it is said that the Zi Shi is more dangerous than the Jin Guan, but this could be only because the Jin Guan has never displayed his military prowess to the world. Dongxia is generally at peace, if not on friendly terms with most nations, with Caelum and Midi being the closest in terms of diplomatic relations. Bellum is a different matter.

    In an unfortunate diplomatic fiasco, a high-ranking Bellumese spy disappeared in Dongxia. The spy was later discovered to be living peacefully in Qian Dao Gong, and ardently refused to return to the Bellumese embassy to be deported back to Bellum. The Dongxian government informed Bellum that if the spy was unwilling to return, he would not be forced to leave, and his rights would be protected, as Dongxia believed in the well-being and happiness of all, should they choose to live there. In retaliation out of fear that the spy would leak national secrets, the Bellumese government arrested the former Zi Shi, who was in Bellum at the time for a diplomatic summit, and offered an exchange of the Zi Shi for the spy. The Zi Shi committed suicide, and the spy remained in Dongxia, with every attempt to kill or extract him proving abortive. Bellum threatened to declare war on Dongxia if the spy wasn’t returned, to which Dongxia replied that to wage war on the sky was both vain and foolish. Currently, Bellum is undergoing a cold war with Dongxia, but for all intents and purposes, Dongxia simply acts as though unaware, or uncaring, of this fact.

    Dongxia’s military is well-equipped and well-trained. The forces are led by the Jin Guan, or the Golden Officer, who is selected from a group of elite officers trained for many years for this purpose, and immersed in the Harmony Pool. Those officers not picked will become generals serving directly under the Jin Guan. All generals wear golden armor, enchanted by alchemy to be stronger than the hardest steel. The Jin Guan’s armor is the most ornate, yet no less protective. He wields a black staff in battle, which has the ability to transform into any weapon of his choice. Blessed by the powers of the Harmony Pool, the Jin Guan is stronger, faster and more enduring than a normal individual. It is said the Jin Guan is easily a match for a Fiorean Wizard Saint, but no one can say; the Jin Guan has never been seen to go to war in this present age.

    The army has four arms: The Dragon Corps, who serve as Dongxia’s navy, sailing in diesel- and steam-propelled battleships, the Phoenix Corps as the airforce, who battle using cannon-bearing airships of assorted sizes, the Tiger Corps, who are the land forces, well-armored and utilizing well-crafted firearms and mystical weapons, and the Turtle Corps, who are military engineers and alchemists, and deploy land vehicles to war. Dongxia’s standing army numbers a hundred thousand strong. What is most puzzling is that Dongxia, apparently a peaceful nation, seems to possess great military prowess that can be unleashed on the world in a moment’s notice. As a result, most diplomatic ties with other nations (except Bellum) are wary, but peaceful. All the same, that there is a non-human ruler of unknown power, who can possibly declare war on the continent and whose motives are unknown, is very unsettling for many governments. Spies and assassins have been sent to Dongxia to attempt to eliminate the Longdi. While there has been no retaliation for these attacks, none of the attackers has ever returned.

    The paramount leader of Dongxia is the seven-foot, bulky, immortal ‘god-king’ Longdi (more of a title, meaning Dragon Emperor; no one knows his real name, and while he will deny that he is a god, other opinions exist). So far, he is undying, and has ruled Dongxia from as far back as reliable history can ascertain, having come to Earthland from the Cosmic Ocean through the Harmony Pool, around which he built Qian Dao Gong, the Imperial City. Though he rules, he has ten advisors, five making up the Hong Chen (Red Ministers) from Huoyu and the other five being the Lan Chen (Blue Ministers) from Shuiyu. Completing the Longdi’s royal court (called Liang Se Ting) are the Zi Shi (the Purple Scholar, who is an expert on foreign affairs and always trained to be an extremely shrewd, and if need be, manipulative diplomat) and the Jin Guan (the Golden Officer, a master of ancient and conventional weapons, as well as battle tactics). There are a good number of retainers of the members of the Liang Se Ting, though the Longdi has no personal retainers. Most of his people seem satisfied with his rule, for they have all basic amenities and then some. However, some others seek to usurp him, claiming that he holds the people of Dongxia in mental servitude against their will.

    Nobody really knows if this is true. What they know is that the Longdi is a very friendly, yet assertive and charismatic leader, who pays attention to his advisors, and seems to genuinely love the people he rules. The true extent of his powers are unknown, for he has never had to fight in the eyes of outsiders, but it is believed that he can bend the wills of mortals to do his bidding. His rule is generally equitable, but his punishments of his enemies are never a public affair. No one knows what happens, but the enemies either disappear or are set free and are surprisingly now sincerely loyal to the existing government, another proof for detractors that the Longdi is not as righteous as he seems. But nobody is certain what his motives are, and most of the people are content, so it’s mostly a case of ‘let sleeping dogs lie’ in Dongxia. Most foreign nations are very wary of this enigmatic ruler, and spies and assassins have been sent to Dongxia to discover what they can about him, or attempt to eliminate him, only to end up either disappearing for good, or being found living happily and loyally in Dongxia and very unwilling to leave.

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    Official Re: Official Nations of Ishgar

    Post by Admin 23rd November 2020, 6:43 am



    Minstrel

    Capital: Flerouge
    Largest City: Merazúr
    Official Language: Minstrelois (Real-World Equivalent - French)
    Government: Elective Monarchy - Empire
    Head of State: Emperor / Empress of Minstrel
    Official Representative: Imperial Delegates
    Official Governing Body: Imperial Chamber
    Head of Military: Général d'armée / Amiral de la Marine
    Population: ~310,000,000
    Wizard Population: ~10%
    Economy: Very Rich
    Currency: D’or

    Description:
    The Empire of Minstrel is a nation as famous as it is pompous, a long and especially bloody history defining the past of this particular country. Minstrel, as it is today, has not always been a unified nation, instead being split between a large plethora of smaller sovereign states and city-states, grouped together by a shared culture and language. For centuries, if not millennia, these states had been in rivalry and conflict with one another, forging alliances amongst themselves only to eventually betray their former allies, waging countless smaller and larger wars to increase their own territory, power, and control in the area of Ishgar that everyone knows now as the Empire of Minstrel. Of course, some states would eventually succumb to this display of power politics, being annexed and absorbed by their neighbors, this process, over the course of hundreds of years, leaving only around a dozen successful states vying for rulership over all people of Minstrel, now even going as far as calling themselves kingdoms where previously had been hundreds of duchies, republics, city-states, and federations. With tensions in Minstrelian lands reaching a breaking point nearly 150 years ago, the few states organized into factions and fought the largest war that Minstrel had seen to this day, that same event being referred to since as the “Guerre de l'Union”, the War of Union, among Minstrelians.

    After many years of fighting, the oldest of these states, led by a king striving to become the Emperor of all Minstrelians, ended the war by conquering all of the other warring states, proclaiming the Empire of Minstrel, unifying his people under a single banner. Still, the fighting had cost him his youth, and indeed, the majority of his life, ill-health and old age plaguing the now Emperor of what had become the second-largest nation on all of Ishgar, and while the rest of his reign would be prosperous, peace returning to Minstrel, he would die without an heir to the crown. However, before he did, in a move that simultaneously solved the problem that had caused him such trouble and ensured that the young Empire would not dissolve into war once more upon his death, the Imperial Chamber was established out of representatives sent by every noble family in Minstrel, existing both as a check to limit the powers of the king and assist in ruling the young nation as well as serve as an electorate, voting from amongst itself a successor to the crown of the Emperor, who would rule Minstrel until their death. What the man had not foreseen, of course, was that, while this move undoubtedly stabilized the uncertain future of Minstrel, it threw the political scene of Minstrel into disarray. With control over one of the strongest nations on the continent of Ishgar being the prize one could win, the nobles would begin to attempt anything and everything to obtain the crown for themselves, not shying away from shady deals, illegitimate practices, or even assassinations and murder, turning the election process of the Emperor of Minstrel into a spectacle of unsavory intrigue, cabal, and conspiracy. Over time, even the position of Emperor became less and less safe, with exceedingly ambitious and power-hungry nobles seeking to kill or overthrow the Emperor to take the position for themselves, only for the process to repeat anew. This process in question, of course, has, to this day, dominated imperial politics, the Emperor and noblemen and women alike being, as a consequence, heavily guarded, untrusting, and cynical, most establishing extensive security and spy networks to protect themselves and get ahead of their competitors or even members of their own families. As this process is highly competitive, titles of nobility are only bestowed within the already existing noble families of Minstrel and rarely to ordinary citizens, with noble titles under no circumstances being granted to any outsider, a rule that only the Emperor or Empress themselves may annul.

    The ordinary people, of course, are excluded from this process, unaware of the political corruption amongst the nobles of their nation. Still, most citizens of Minstrel are immensely patriotic and loyal to their nation, for good reason. Minstrel is a nation of abundance and wealth that stands out even among the richest of Earthland’s nations, the sheer collective economic power, industry, and resources in Minstrel catapulting it to what some believe is, based on the average, the wealthiest nation in all of Earthland. Very few people go hungry in Minstrel, and those that do are generally outcasts for one reason or another, ostracized for daring to counter the rigid social norms and conservative rules of conduct in this nation of etiquette, conservatism, and pride. The people of Minstrel, while friendly and polite, place great emphasis on appearances and outward displays of wealth, power, or skills to determine social standing, ordinary people and nobles alike showing these aspects of their lives off at every opportunity, with most people striving to be at the top of the social hierarchy through the means available to them. After all, if one does not possess a good standing in Minstrel, one can expect to be treated rather poorly.

    Minstrel’s wealth and power originate from two factors: The abundance of natural resources found in its territory, ranging from all manners of metals, precious or not, gemstones, crystals, lacrima, or even simple things like high-quality timber, coal, and oil, which is readily and widely exploited by the people of Minstrel, as well as the nigh legendary skill of Minstrelian craftsmen, artisans, and workers. If you want a piece of high-quality furniture, it more likely than not came from Minstrel. Prized jewelry, paintings, glassworks, sculptures, writing, are all things Minstrel is known for, and much more, quality being the foremost principle in the Minstrelian industry.

    Minstrel is a nation of diverse terrain, most famous, however, for its extensive beaches of pearl-white sand and crystal-clear, warm waters along its western shores, the ocean beyond appropriately called the “Azure Sea”, the rocky cliffs and alpine mountains to its north, large forests and woodlands to the south, and extensive grasslands that transition into a dry savannah in the east near the border of Desierto. Minstrel’s cities and villages are plentiful, anything from houses built in the style of medieval pragmatism to gothic cathedrals being a common sight, with modern architecture being almost entirely absent, as nearly all people of Minstrel value their traditions and origins more than progressivism or modernity. Minstrel’s capital and seat of the imperial throne, Flerouge, is located at the intersection of the Ruisselet Turquoise and one of the streams that feed into it, the ashen-white peaks of the Marbre mountains being visible on the horizon. The city itself follows the course of the river that bisects it and is encircled by impressive stone walls, giving the entirety of the city the appearance of a fortified structure from the outside, though the city has since expanded and spilled out of the city walls, which, in times of peace as Minstrel has experienced them over the last 150 years, offer little use apart from serving as a reminder of the nation’s turmoiled past. The city, with its some 4 million inhabitants, is one of the largest in all of Ishgar, though the title of largest city is held by another population center in Minstrel, Merazúr at the edge of the Azure Sea, also known as the “City of Glass” due to its massive domed buildings, with its nearly 10 million citizens. Favored by traders from all over Earthland due to its advantageous location, it quickly grew into a bustling metropolis ever since peace had found its way to Minstrel, and indeed represents one of the most impressive feats of human civilization in all of Ishgar, dominating the grasslands and shores of the Minstrelian plains. It is sometimes called the “Jewel of the Azure Sea” by foreign traders, as the first impression it leaves behind is quite distinct, being a testament to Minstrel’s sheer wealth and power.

    The government of Minstrel, its Emperor or Empress along with the Imperial Chamber, handles the internal and external affairs of the nation from the Imperial Palace in the center of Flerouge, the Imperial Chamber holding the power to debate matters of state amongst themselves and come up with solutions to potential problems, while the Emperor or Empress of Minstrel is granted the right to ultimately make a decision and determine the direction of imperial policy. The Monarch also retains the right to temporarily dissolve the Imperial Chamber in cases of emergency for a duration of 5 years, though this right has never been invoked before, as it is clear to both the Monarch and the nobles of the chamber that such a move would most likely spark a conflict of interest between the crown and its feudal aristocrats, an abuse of this emergency power most likely being the spark for open rebellion against the Emperor or Empress. The Emperor or Empress also names Imperial Delegates, noblemen and women that represent the Minstrelian crown on missions to other nations to conduct diplomacy, some rumoring, though, that these delegates have been used as spies in the past.

    Another notable institution is Minstrels military, the Armée impériale, the Imperial Army, and the Marine impériale, the Imperial Navy, with their leaders being the Général d'armée and the Amiral de la Marine, the General of the Army and the Admiral of the Navy, both appointed by the Emperor or Empress personally, which, when combined, constitute the second-largest armed forces in all of Ishgar, Minstrel being behind only Pergrande in sheer numbers with up to 25% of the population being part of the Imperial Army or Navy respectively. While Minstrel’s technological advancements are nothing to write home about, the equipment of their soldiers and the design of their ships being decidedly average, Minstrel harbors not only a massive number of troops, but also skilled military commanders as well as strong mages, though the military is made up of both mages and non-mages alike. To maintain these numbers is important, as Minstrel, in the past, has often been not only the target of the envious eyes of other nations, but also been looked at with more than just a bit of suspicion. As not only one of the youngest nations on the continent of Ishgar, but also nominally one of the most powerful ones, other nations remain cautious of its role in the power dynamics of Ishgar and Earthland alike, Ca-Elum being especially cold towards its neighbor across the sea, while Desierto remains officially neutral, though covertly hostile towards its larger neighbor, many a raid being launched deep into Minstrelian territory from the sandy dunes or dry coasts of Desierto in attempts to siphon some of the wealth to the poorer of the two, the eastern coasts and border of Minstrel being particularly closely guarded by its armed forces. This, of course, has soured the Minstrelian public’s perception of Desierto, propaganda and word of mouth turning into what is now colloquially known as “Terre de sauvages”, a name that needs no explanation.

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    Official Re: Official Nations of Ishgar

    Post by Admin 23rd November 2020, 6:43 am



    Napedia

    Capital: Ellesmere
    Largest City: Ellesmere
    Official Language: Minstrelois (Real-World Equivalent - French)
    Government: Parliamentary Democracy - Republic
    Head of State: Prime Minister
    Official Representative: Prime Minister
    Official Governing Body: Parliament
    Head of Military: First General
    Population: ~750,000
    Wizard Population: ~5%
    Economy: Very Rich
    Currency: D’or

    Description:
    Off the coast of Minstrel lies a mountainous island country. Snowy peaks pierce the clouds while lush green valleys line the various rivers that run through it. Rocky but beautiful coastlines rim the landscape. In the summer, the hillsides are covered with beautiful wildflowers and lush grass. However, the country also suffers from harsh winters. This land is named Napedia. At its heart lies the capital city of Ellesmere, an architectural wonder that is built on a cliffside and surrounded distantly by grand mountain peaks. Generally, the city has a Victorian architecture style, but modern styles are starting to appear in the newer parts of Ellesmere. Through the capital flows the Rivière D'eau, pouring over the cliffs in a series of massive waterfalls.

    Originally Napedia was a colony of wealthy Minstrelians, but nearly a century ago, the island declared its autonomy. This was during a time of high tension with Minstrel, but in current days the two countries have a close alliance. There are many similarities between the two to this day.

    Napedia functions under a parliamentary democracy system. They have a Prime Minister as the head of state and a parliament as the governing body. Their military is fairly small and works under the leadership of the First General. There isn’t much external conflict with other countries, so the military works mostly on internal security and affairs.

    Napedia is a country of vast wealth and high class. The majority of people are rich, and those that aren’t work for the wealthy. The main industries are tourism, luxury retail, fashion, and gemstone mining, though there are many other smaller industries that the country’s elite dabbles in. From a young age, children are highly encouraged to participate in many different extracurriculars and do well in school. Oftentimes, this is merely so that the family can show off to their rivals. The culture is very heavily focused on social appearances. Everything people do falls under the scrutinous and ruthless eye of their peers. Napedians, especially the upper class, tend to be very two-faced. This leads to a very judgmental and often toxic attitude among social circles.

    Napedian culture is generally conservative. Some topics, especially those personal or skeptical in nature, are not spoken of for the risk of social ostracization. There is a mold in high society that most strive to fit into, and anyone outside of what a person is supposed to be is highly frowned upon. Napedia is fairly religious, which is a lot of what the conservative nature is based upon. Their religion is monotheistic and strict with clear guidelines of how one is supposed to live their life.

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    Official Re: Official Nations of Ishgar

    Post by Admin 23rd November 2020, 6:44 am



    Midi

    Capital: Minazawa
    Largest City: Naramoto
    Official Language: Midijin (Real-World Equivalent- Japanese)
    Government: Shogunate - Dictatorship
    Head of State: Emperor
    Official Representative: The Shushugo
    Official Governing Body: United Province
    Head of Military: Shogun
    Population: ~55,000,000
    Wizard Population: ~20%
    Economy: Rich
    Currency: Gon

    Description:
    Midi is a beautiful, vibrant, and peaceful cape nestled at the southern tip of the landmass it shares with Minstrel. Though it’s one of the smallest nations, it has a large population for its size and yet still welcomes outsiders with open arms. Its population of mages is one of largest on the continent, though they call all those blessed with supernatural abilities “Samurai”. Aside from the Emperor and Shogun, there isn’t much disparity between social classes or mage and non-mage. All people are accepted and treated with the utmost courteousness and respect. Those seeking a tranquil existence find it among the lush grasses and sparkling rivers of Midi.

    Technically Midi is ruled by an Emperor seated in the heart of Midi, Minazawa. The position has become more of a symbol of peace and prosperity over time, with most of the active leading coming from the head of the Military, the Shogun. The Emperor, the Shogun, and the advisors for both meet as the United Province to discuss truly large national issues, but otherwise, The Shogun handles most responsibilities. The Shogun is closely involved with the general public of all social standings, making sure day-to-day life runs as smoothly and safely as possible for everyone, for the very rich and poor alike. The tough but compassionate ruling is appreciated by the citizens, who enjoy a time of peace longer than any other point in history. Even if the army is usually not needed other than for common policing, make no mistake. Every last member is a powerful, disciplined, and expertly trained Samurai that can visit death upon those that threaten the Emperor and his people faster with a blade than with their formidable magic. It’s also important to note that every Midian is so loyal to their nation that they, too, will put their lives on the line to protect their home from any threat, domestic or international. No amount of peace will dull this.

    The main river, le Ruisselet Turquoise, that courses through Minstrel also feeds the farmlands of Midi as it runs from the mountain ranges in the heart of Midi. The nation’s main exports are vegetables, which are sometimes grown into novelty shapes for fun, and grains from their healthy fields. Midi also benefits from a thriving tourist industry due to its rich culture, respectful populous, picturesque locales, and intricately decorated statues and religious temples. Most notable is Sacred Shinnai Falls at the very tip of the cape. Towering statues of Midian gods and legends are carved with painstaking detail into the cliffs, framing the large waterfall of the Shinnai falls' escape to the sea. If the sights and fresh produce aren’t what a traveler is looking for, perhaps its expertly crafted katanas are. Since they are not mass-produced to retain their legendary quality, katana production and sales do not account for much of Midi’s economy. Still, for swordsmiths worth their salt and signatures, it’s a very lucrative business. The Shogun provides his army with swords from local swordsmiths as a testament to their superiority to other swords.

    Overall, Midi is a gorgeous and relatively safe place to both visit and live no matter who comes across their border. The culture is something to immerse in, the food is fresh, the katanas are sharp, and the sights are serene enough to calm even the most chaotic of souls. Samurai and the military keep the nation safe. While every place has its issues, crime within Midi is low compared to other nations in Ishgar. Midi maintains an attitude of stoic neutrality to other nations.

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    Official Re: Official Nations of Ishgar

    Post by Admin 23rd November 2020, 6:45 am



    Desierto

    Capital: Alwarda / Aljana / Qafas
    Largest City: Alwarda
    Official Language: Desiertan (Real-World Equivalent - Arabic)
    Government: Absolutist Triumvirate - Confederacy of 3 Kingdoms
    Head of State: The 3 Desert Sultans
    Official Representative: The 3 Musafirin
    Official Governing Body: Alliance of the 3 Kings
    Head of Military: The 3 Desert Sultans
    Population: ~255,000,000
    Wizard Population: ~1%
    Economy: Poor
    Currency: Zarah

    Description:
    Desierto is made up almost entirely of sprawling, seemingly endless sands that border Minstrel and Joya to the East and Bellum to the West. The arid and blistering environment is harsh on residents and creatures alike. It is a nation of widespread squalor, where most must scrape and fight for what they have while a very small percentage horde extreme wealth. The 3 Sultans issue food rations every month, but it is often just barely enough to survive if it can be consumed before raiders target it. Despite these hardships, the population is still quite large, though mages are scarce. Mages aren’t outright hunted these days, but most that don’t wish to have their every move scrutinized move out of the country. This leaves the mage population to consist of mostly the desperate trying to keep their families alive and outlaws using the extensive sands to hide.

    Though this description of modern-day Desierto may sound harsh, it is a great improvement from its long and bloody history. Being one of the older countries to form on the continent of Ishgar, it began 3,500 years ago as nothing more than small tribes with no magic that laid claim to increasingly larger pieces of land. Initially, each functioned as its own entity, having its own customs and rituals, though all shared the same polytheistic religion and the belief in an afterlife not unlike the world of the living. As such, Desierto holds grand, ceremonial ruins and temples throughout its waves of sand that belong to rulers of old, which popped up quite frequently given how often the tribes fought each other for more land and power. The conquering tribe would absorb all the people and assets from the defeated tribe, and this continued for 500 years until there were but three large tribes remaining. It was then that a stalemate was reached, though the balance was strained at best. They cared not for the problems occurring outside the borders of their country, and for good reason. It was more than enough work trying to overtake one another, yet remain equal until that time came. It was a time of diplomatic facades, backroom deals, and espionage until they found something they could agree on. Though previously the land of sand had seen no magic, suddenly those with strange abilities gifted by the gods started to crop up. Hailed as God-Kissed, they wielded strange and terrible power that tipped the three-way scales more than any of the tribal leaders could fathom or stand. Now they had a common enemy in these God-kissed, so they became the scapegoats for the nation's strife. Shortly after, after much debating and paperwork, the three tribal leaders named themselves The 3 Desert Sultans over one united country, using their combined assets to fend off any threat by rebellions rallying around the very small population of mages. For the next 2,800 years, these united sultans sent out their trusted guards to ruthlessly hunt the God-Kissed, looking to wipe their lingering threat out altogether.

    Over time, the strength of the God-Kissed waned, but their numbers rose, though they still hardly made up more than a small number of the population. Modern Desierto is still ruled by three sultans, and they revel in absolute and equal power and retain the ancient fear of magic. The positions have been inherited by bloodline for centuries, albeit three separate bloodlines. Being the richest families in the whole nation, they do not often leave their palaces situated in each of the nation’s three capitals. Instead, they rely on reports from their Vizier Cabal and send their three Musafirin as ambassadors to represent them as needed. The Vizier Cabal has no official political power and is little more than an overly important message delivery system at face value, but it is actually in a position to influence decisions by cherry-picking what information is passed and the tone and implications of said information. While the sultans are plenty capable of running the country, between the skewed information from their cabal and infighting over most decisions, rulings are either self-centered or slow to come and harsh once they are put in place on the citizens. Every set of sultans that have ever ruled have been consumed with fear that their power and wealth will be taken from them, leading them to see those with magic or supernatural abilities of any kind as a direct threat to both. Their focus on maintaining their positions of power and wealth leads them to significantly neglect their peoples’ needs and the safety of their lands in favor of paranoid acts of espionage on countries they suspect might threaten them one day, more specifically the rich and heavily militarized Minstrel to the west.

    The three sultans' capital cities are situated in the most fertile and comfortable lands the unforgiving country has to offer, where most of the wealthy of Desierto congregate. To the north is Alwarda, situated where the beaches on Lake Kyrie meet the mouth of the river Sobarah. Equidistant to the south is Alijana, in the luscious Diwa Cove, and to the southeast is the oasis of Qafas ringing a small lake named Suban. The wealthy farmers make good use of the limited irrigated lands, doing all they can to keep themselves and the capitals supplied with plenty of food, though not much of it goes to the drier areas. These areas are heavily guarded by the highly skilled and stealthy Bahiths, Desierto's growing military that reports directly to the sultans. They keep the farms safe from thieves and are especially dedicated to keeping the three sultans safe at all costs.

    Considering ninety percent of Desierto's large population deals with terrain that is nearly impossible to farm, almost all foodstuffs must be imported to the inland dunes from other countries or the farms along the Sobarah River, thus making its prices soar to unreasonable heights. It is only through a deal with Desierto's only true ally, Bellum, that most of its poor people survive with its strange technology. The two countries are highly unlikely bedfellows due to their unspoken disagreements on magic, but the benefits outweigh the risks. Perhaps it is a case of 'keep your enemies closer', their mutual distrust of Minstrel, or a combination of both, but Bellum enjoys the money for keeping the Bahiths well armed and the technology to keep Desierto's poor people fed. Desierto enjoys not starving to death and the tenuous trust and security that the magical country won't decide to conquer them.

    Though better than it has been in the past due to Bellian assistance with inland farming, the poor and hungry find ways to make enough money to improve their situations the best they can. This has given rise to a thriving black market dealing in anything that can be sold and countless smuggling rings, as well as lots of work for raider guilds and outlaws. Those that are tough enough to survive the rampant crime and hard-hearted enough to ignore innocent suffering can make a lot of Desierto Zarah. For the law-abiding citizen, Desierto is a prime location for mining precious metals and gems. Most materials mined are used by the Alliance of the 3 Kings to trade for imported goods, though materials mined beyond the quotas may be kept by the citizens. This has birthed a market for finely crafted jewelry as well.

    Overall, Desierto is a lawless, difficult land full of many dangers, but also provides many opportunities for those looking to walk on the less-legal side of life or interested in gold and jewels. Mages and supernatural folk shouldn’t expect a warm welcome from anyone within Desierto’s borders, though. One thoughtless step can land one in a deadly situation or at the very least highly encouraged to visit Bellum instead.

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    Official Re: Official Nations of Ishgar

    Post by Admin 23rd November 2020, 6:46 am



    Bellum

    Capital: Memoria
    Largest City: Memoria
    Official Language: Bellia (Real-World Equivalent - Latin)
    Government: Holy Council - Theocracy
    Head of State: Grand Cardinal
    Official Representative: Cardinal of Whispers
    Official Governing Body: Holy Council of Bellum
    Head of Military: Cardinal of Peace
    Population: ~35,000,000
    Wizard Population: ~90%
    Economy: Rich
    Currency: Dinarius

    Description:
    Bellum is an artificial nation, not existing in Earthland before the events that reshaped Ishgar 500 years ago caused its rise from the ashes of a tragedy. Bellum, formerly being a part of the Empire of Pergrande, used to be a province formerly called Kyrie, though this name today exists only in reference to the Lake in Ishgar's midst, bordering Bellum, and a distant memory of the past. Still, the event that has given birth to Bellum as a player on the world stage is still well-remembered in the national consciousness of the people inhabiting this country to this day and looked upon deep-seated with feelings of contempt and the desire for revenge. This fact originates in Bellum's founding as a nation-state, as the majority of the population of modern Bellum are the descendants of mages from all over Pergrande, refugees that had flocked to this part of the Pergrandian Empire to put up a desperate resistance against the state that had ordered their complete and total annihilation, an uprising against the purges that had killed millions upon millions, and were in the process of extinguishing the lives of millions more. The battle, and indeed the war that ensued, a clash of hundreds of thousands of mages determined to fight for their survival and an institution equally determined to eradicate magic from the Empire of Pergrande for good, would be recorded in the annals of history as one of the most brutal and merciless conflicts in the history of not just Ishgar, but Earthland as a whole, the number of dead surpassing even those of the wars that were fought against the Dragons when the great magical beasts still ruled the world.

    As losses began to pile higher and higher on both sides, however, Pergrande would eventually let up and retreat past the large river at the province's northern border, abandoning Kyrie to the rebels that had seized it, along with other parts of its territory elsewhere. Switching from an offensive strategy to a different approach, Pergrande closed its borders and stationed its army near them to ensure a total lockdown of the nation, the newly independent Kyrie celebrating this as a victory. Still, the nation, now renamed to Bellum, "War" in the old tongue of Pergrande to forever commemorate the event that had led to its creation, had been torn apart by the conflict, the land charred and destroyed from years of fighting. Many more would perish in the chaotic years after the war had ended, both in Bellum and Pergrande respectively, though as the waves or purge after purge would continue in Pergrande, the people of the young Bellum would turn to the thing that had saved them: Magic.

    The possession of this trait already bound the people of Bellum together, most of them being mages, and those that weren't being part of a mage's family, with all of them having been hunted by Pergrande based on this fact alone. With the use of magic, they would begin the work of restoring the nation and shaping it according to their desires, the reliance and reverence for magic gradually increasing until reaching an almost fanatical level. Simultaneously, the worship of the Ishgarian God of Magic, Arcanos, increased drastically among the citizens of Bellum, the newly founded Church of Arcanos quickly gaining massive public support and unrivaled power in the chaotic post-war political landscape of Bellum, until eventually establishing itself as the dominant political power, effectively becoming not only the state religion, but the state itself. Bellum's clergy had begun to administrate the healing nation, organizing itself into a system of hierarchy based on the position in the Church of Arcanos, the worship of the God of Magic and magic itself. While Bellum stabilized, its people had not forgotten the suffering that Pergrande had caused them, and similarly, Pergrande had not forgotten its original goal, revanchist attitudes swiftly leading to the first clash between the two nations after only 10 years of relative peace. Heavy fighting would once more stoke the flames of war in the borderlands, Bellum, now organized and headed by leaders with fanatical fervor, inflicting heavy losses on the overwhelmed forces of Pergrande and driving the Empire back past the mountains to Bellum's north, though the terrain, coupled with Pergrande's increased efforts, would grind the offensive to a halt, the borders of this conflict, with minor changes, persisting to this day as Bellum and Pergrande have found themselves in a nigh constant state of cold war or open conflict with one another.

    Bellum, to this day, is also controlled still by the Church of Arcanos, the clergy acting as government and church officials simultaneously, with the highest positions being that of Cardinal, of which there are 6 in total, as well as the High Cardinal, the direct representative of the Church of Arcanos and, according to the beliefs of his followers, a direct voice for Arcanos himself, though there exists no proof of this fact, of course, if the word of the clergy and believers is disregarded. It is undeniable, however, that the Cardinals hold considerable political power within Bellum, being not only strong mages themselves, but also being granted certain privileges and responsibilities. The Cardinal of Peace oversees Bellum's extensive military forces, their training, supplies, equipment, and operations, acting as what other nations would call a general or admiral. The Cardinal of Whispers, usually a skilled talker and politician, handles the diplomacy between Bellum and other nations of Ishgar, often negotiating on behalf of the Grand Cardinal. The Cardinal of Faith administrates matters of the Church in Bellum, this post being occupied only by the most pious of men and women. The Cardinal of Unity handles matters of internal security and public opinion. The Cardinal of Prosperity oversees Bellum's industrial and infrastructure developments as well as larger building projects while also administrating the nation's treasury, with the last Cardinal, the Cardinal of Law, presenting the highest instance of jurisdiction and judicial authority in the nation, often making use of his powers when the situation, or indeed public opinion, calls for it. The High Cardinal, as the head of the Church of Arcanos, oversees the Holy Council of Cardinals, which directs Bellum and its people and debates over matters concerning the state, and makes sure they fulfill their duties to the nation of Bellum, acting effectively as the Head of State for Bellum. The High Cardinal has the ultimate say over matters of politics, state, war, public affairs, and so on, and as such, the position is most often occupied by the most influential member of the Cardinals, who is, more often than not, also a formidable wizard, easily rivaling the Fiorean Gods of Ishgar.

    The people of Bellum, of course, are very faithful, not only placing considerable trust and control in the hands of the Church of Arcanos, but also praying to the God of Magic with the highest of reverence. Arcanos and his domain, Magic, play an important role in the society of Bellum. The vast majority of people in Bellum, perhaps coincidentally, perhaps based on their heritage, are born with the ability to use magic to varying degrees, the citizens of this nation making liberal use of their powers. Bellian society is based heavily on the use of magic, with technology, architecture, and weapons that rely entirely on the inclusion and use of magic in their design being invented and developed in Bellum. As a consequence, however, the people of Bellum tend to view those born without magic with some suspicion as they assume that Arcanos has abandoned them, withholding his blessing. Those who are without magic are not the chosen ones of Arcanos. Those without magic, after all, are not only of no use to Bellian society, but even worse, could also feasibly be allied with their enemy, Pergrande. Subsequently, magicless men and women can receive varying degrees of ostracization in Bellian society, most being discriminated against in one form or another. As long as you are able to utilize magic, however, all are welcome in Bellum, the culture being relatively free and accepting. Constant war and religious doctrines, however, have influenced the people of Bellum heavily over the years, and almost all people hate Pergrande with a burning passion without even knowing why, and worship Arcanos and revere his clergy without second thought or questions.

    Bellum's capital city is called Memoria, located in the heart of the nation as a bend of the Prioria River, which splits into a river delta as it approaches the coast. Memoria is an old city, being the first settlement established in Bellum after the civil war in Pergrande had ended, Bellian society spreading from this location to the rest of the country over the years. Memoria is a large metropolis, monumental buildings of heavy marble dotting the cityscape liberally. Still, modernity or technology do not seem to have influenced Bellum much to this day, everyday occurrences that you would expect in a big city, such as public transport, street lights, or even shopkeepers, vendors, and market stands replaced entirely by arcane equivalents. Appropriate to this fact, Memoria is also simply known colloquially in- and outside of Bellum as the "City of Magic", the arcane being present everywhere you look. Still, despite the fact that it is a sight to behold, only a few daring outsiders and adventurers find their way here, the close proximity to Pergrande and the tensions between the two nations making it a somewhat dangerous destination. Sadly, terrorist attacks perpetrated by Pergrandian spies or infiltrators are not unheard of in Bellum, the opposite, however, being true, as well, yet the people of Memoria seem to almost disregard this fact, naturally decrying atrocities as tragedies and the dead of such attacks as martyrs of Arcanos, though living their lives without fear or limitations. Every day is a gift, and gifts are best left unsquandered. The rest of Bellum's population can be found among villages or some larger cities along River Prioria, not many settling beyond the lifeline that runs through Bellum, as the land is dry and infertile. Rocky, flat terrain spans almost the entirety of Bellum's south while high altitudes and cold winds dominate the northern borderlands. Bellum's east is dominated by expansive grasslands and savannahs near Desierto which transition into thick woodlands near Lake Kyrie in the center of Ishgar, these woods being home to exotic magical beasts and creatures found nowhere else in Ishgar, or even Earthland as a whole.

    This fact, it is speculated, is anchored in the extreme abundance of naturally-occurring magical energy in Bellum, which itself originates in the presence of large, natural lacrima reserves found deep in the earth of this nation. These lacrima have, over many hundreds of thousands of years, collected magical energy from the surrounding atmosphere, collecting and concentrating it in extensive networks of crystalline under Bellum's landscapes. Bellum, of course, has learned to exploit this fact, mining the lacrima not only for use in their magical technology, but also for export to other nations, the majority of its industries and manufacturing depending on the large lacrima mines that supply Bellum and Ishgar with powerful crystals of concentrated magical energy, Bellum, in the entirety of Earthland, perhaps being known for not only these crystals, which can occur in all different shapes, sizes, and elemental affinities, depending on where they are found, but also the technologies to use and exploit them.

    Bellum mostly maintains neutral, albeit cold relationships with not only its neighboring states, but most nations in Earthland, particularly bad opinions of Minstrel based on power-politics and previous imperialist ambitions souring relationships to this day. Due to the rapid and massive expansion of Enca's army and navy, Bellum further has adopted a more and more cautious and wary attitude when it comes to the ambitious island nation not too far from its shores. Iceberg and Joya are looked upon with ridicule more than anything, as most Bellians do not take these two neighbors seriously due to an apparent lack of strength or direction, while Fiore, not least due to the similarities between the two nations, is respected. The nation of Bellum, not least due to its high concentration of powerful mages, is at the forefront of considerable advancements in the fields of magical research and the arcane in general, granting it much influence, especially in the magical world. Fiore and Bellum, due to a mutual benefit for both nations, are thus bound together in a somewhat tense defensive alliance, though Fiore disagrees with Bellum's politics. Still, it would be unwise to make Bellum one's enemy when it can be avoided, of course.

    The Desert Sultans of Desierto, on the other hand, are and have been, somewhat paradoxically, one of the most trusted partners of Bellum, citizens of Bellum and Desierto alike turning a blind eye to the former's suspicions concerning the magicless and the latter's suspicion concerning magecraft in general. Perhaps the origin of this fact lies in their common enemies, Minstrel and Pergrande, or simply a mutually advantageous political and economical situation, as Desierto is one of the largest importers of Bellian technologies, particularly to assist in the development of sustainable agriculture outside of the safety of its oases and rivers and to advance its weaponry and armed forces. What does superstition matter, after all, when there is an opportunity to obtain power and make money?

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    Official Re: Official Nations of Ishgar

    Post by Admin 23rd November 2020, 6:47 am



    Pergrande

    Capital: Silagrad
    Largest City: Pervaya
    Official Language: Pergranti (Real-World Equivalent - Russian)
    Government: Absolute Monarchy - Empire
    Head of State: Emperor / Empress of Pergrande
    Official Representative: Imperial Envoy First Class
    Official Governing Body: N/A
    Head of Military: Marshal of the Imperial Army / Admiral of the Imperial Navy / General of the Imperial Air Force
    Population: ~1,450,000,000
    Wizard Population: ~0.0001%
    Economy: Decent
    Currency: Zolo

    Description:
    Pergrande is, without any doubt or question, the largest nation in all of Ishgar, constituting the single biggest nation-state on the continent for hundreds, if not thousands of years. Not only does Pergrande contain more than 50% of the continent's population, the nation also possesses the most landmass and the largest military, as well as a seemingly limitless supply of raw materials and resources. Even if all other nations on Ishgar combined their total military forces, they still wouldn't be able to reach the sheer amounts of manpower that the Empire of Pergrande, the nation's official name, is able to wield. Despite these facts, however, Pergrande's claim to the title of the most powerful nation on Ishgarian soil is disputed, and for good reason. While Pergrande certainly doesn't lack impressive records to boast with, it's generally considered a rogue nation by the other nations of Ishgar and Earthland, severely lacking in not only the sufficient freedoms other nations in Ishgar benefit from, but propagating an ideology that is frowned upon by many nations across Earthland. These facts are rooted within two historical events that occurred in Pergrande roughly 500 years ago, changing the nation into what it is today.

    Pergrande has always been dominated by imperialist and expansionist attitudes, especially amongst its ruling class and nobility. From the days of Pergrande being simply a small state, a princedom called Pervaya, among many that existed on the extensive lands south of the mountains that separate the peninsula of Ishgar from its adjoining landmass to it's massive campaigns of expansion and conquest that saw all of its neighbors integrated into the newly formed Pergrandian state, this nation has never held back from seizing a viable opportunity to expand both its power and influence, and, after unifying the Pergranti people in a single nation, it was time for the now Empire to expand further yet. In conflicts that raged for many years, the Empire of Pergrande would expand further still, its troops marching inland and occupying territory from the woods of modern-day Seven and the mountain ranges of Bosco, Stella, and Joya to the shores of Lake Kyrie and the harsh desert sands of Desierto, even approaching the southern string of islands today unified under Enca, unscrupulously utilizing the might at their disposal to subdue and wipe out those that opposed their nation. With very real prospects to unify Ishgar under the banner of Imperial Pergrande becoming more of a possibility with every consolidation, every annexation, and every military campaign, however, the massive state would draw not only the wariness of most, but also the contempt of some.

    The continuous march down the continent, however, would be halted suddenly and unexpectedly in the first event that would not only determine the fate of Ishgar, but also the future of the Empire of Pergrande and define the continent for generations, reshaping it in a variety of ways. Almost simultaneously, cataclysmic eruptions of massive magical power would occur in 3 locations across the Pergrandian Empire, all different in nature, though seemingly tied together by both timing and the affected party. In the cold sea north of Iceberg, a portal would open temporarily, releasing not only a wide array of otherworldly monstrosities that still plague the frozen wastes of Iceberg to this day, but also a spell that would transform Iceberg into the same land of ice and snow that it is today. In Ishgar's midst, an explosion of unprecedented proportions would shake the earth as a large chunk of land was simply obliterated, the sheer force of this catastrophe throwing massive amounts of flame and smoke high into the atmosphere of Earthland, a massive, nigh nation-sized crater remaining in its wake. Further to the south, the prosperous province of Sin, known for its peaceful and idyllic fields and steppes and collectively recognized as the single biggest producer of grain and other products of agriculture in Pergrande, was affected by a sudden calamity resembling that of Iceberg, though the portal that would open here at the tip of the Sin peninsula, while releasing copious numbers of hellish monstrosities as well, did not lower temperatures, instead doing the opposite. From one moment to the other, Sin as covered by flame and unbearable heat, plants, people, entire towns and cities burning away in an inferno so large that the resulting cloud of burning smoke would darken this part of Earthland for days. While temperatures would drop somewhat in the coming days, as well, volcanic activity seemed to increase rapidly in Sin, despite the fact that no volcanoes had been known to exist in the province, the entire area being turned into a burning wasteland, a charred and glassed desert swarmed with unimaginable abominations and monstrosities.

    These events not only left the entirety of Ishgar stunned, Pergrande being paralyzed by the overwhelming set of catastrophes which, when combined, simply couldn't be overcome in any rapid manner, but their effects also left millions, if not tens of millions of people dead, injured, or displaced. While in the short term, the sheer number of dead was a heavy blow to the nation's integrity, the long term effects were even more devastating. With Pergrande's access to the continent through Iceberg and Kyrie being completely cut off by insurmountable weather conditions and the massive levels of destruction to its south, the only possible trade routes left were via sea, where previously unknown, enormous monstrosities would now prey on any ship that dared to venture out far enough, and through the harsh sands of Desierto, a nation that had always been in opposition, if not conflict with Pergrande. A large portion of internal production had simply been wiped out with the destruction of Sin, and the ensuing shortages in the days and weeks after the triplet catastrophes led to widespread hunger, and eventually, famine. Millions of refugees would flee the affected regions, putting an enormous strain on the nation's infrastructure, widespread civil unrest and crime following soon, the mightiest military in Earthland being decimated by monstrosities and beasts in an attempt to get the situation back under control in the affected regions. For all intents and purposes, the once so mighty Empire was on the brink of collapse only a month after the great cataclysm had occurred. That was, of course, until the Emperor would step in, pulling the troops from Sin and Iceberg and abandoning both provinces to their fates. While Iceberg was left to its remaining inhabitants, the Iser people, who refused to abandon their ancestral homeland, Sin, being the wasteland it was now, was simply barricaded off from the rest of Pergrande by a wall that, as time went on, would become the largest construction project in all of Ishgar, gradually growing and growing until it stood hundreds of feet tall, towering over the charred landscape and preventing most beasts from entering the rest of Pergrande with its sheer, monolithic might.

    Still, this was not enough for the citizens of Pergrande. Even in the weeks after the disasters, it was impossible to determine the cause of the incident that had sent more people to their deaths than any previous event in the history of Ishgar, and indeed, it was widely speculated what could've even caused calamities of such proportions, to begin with. The masses, beaten, broken, and in a state of blind rage demanded someone to blame for their suffering, and the ruling class knew that, if the guilt would not be ascribed to someone sooner rather than later, it would be their own heads that would roll. The group of ruling figures, centered around the Emperor of Pergrande, would convene, crafting up a conspiracy that aimed at solving all of Pergrande's problems in one single stroke. From one day to the other, the country was closed. All travel to and from Pergrande was forbidden to ensure the effectiveness of the second event that would make Pergrande what it is today.

    In a massive campaign of propaganda and disinformation, the triplet catastrophes were blamed on the continent's mage population, as it was reasoned that only a large quantity of magical power could've caused such enormous devastation, not to mention the fact that it had clearly been powerful spells that had changed the weather and terrain of both Iceberg and Sin. While the actual causes were unknown, or perhaps covered up entirely, the frustrated citizens of Pergrande, the overwhelming majority of the country's population, at least, those without magic, would readily swallow the twisted facts the government fed them. The despair they had endured would quickly transform into unconcealed anger and hatred, first the ordinary people, then the government of Pergrande beginning to discriminate against any mage in the nation, tensions gradually escalating until it came to open conflict between the two parties, only giving Pergrande more fuel for its propaganda-machine. As mages rallied against the Empire, the first waves of purges and inquisitions swept through the nation, hundreds of thousands, if not millions of mages being subjected to horrors previously thought to be beyond human capabilities, losing their lives in labor camps deep in the cold tundras of Pergrande's north or being executed on the spot.

    Some managed to hold out longer than others, and the strongest of mages put up stiff resistance, but as before, even the ad-hoc forces couldn't hope to do much against the combined military might of Pergrande. The largest organization and concentration of Pergrandian mages and magecraft, however, would be found in the province of Kyrie, a haven for mages and those associated with them, not to mention the mages formerly employed by the Pergrandian army, which had been among the first to be subjected to harsh treatment by their former comrades. Pergrande would eventually move to clear the province of any resistance, though this would lead to an open declaration of war and secession of Kyrie from the rest of Pergrande, an event later known simply as "The Civil War" in Pergrande and "The Revolutionary War" in Bellum. Still not back to its full strength, weakened by the purging of its ranks, Pergrande had a hard time against the individually more powerful mages of independent Kyrie, a province that would later establish itself as the nation of Bellum after driving Pergrande and its Soldiers away from its lands. Defeated, but not broken, Pergrande would retreat further inland, beyond the large mountain ranges and harsh terrain that formed a natural barrier between it and the rest of Ishgar, and though frustrated, the Emperor and the ruling class would gradually come to realize their visions. More and more mages would be found and eliminated, Pergrande gradually being turned into a nation of purges and paranoia. Pergrandian secret police would be first founded, expanded, and later institutionalized, an organization simply known as the "Paladins", which would be trusted with a few vital tasks, such as destroying all things magical in the empire and combatting the hordes of monsters that would now find their way into the Empire's territory and popped up all over the nation. The population would be subjected to almost full-time control by the state and their fellow comrades, any political dissent being met with the harshest of responses.

    As time went on, magic would thus slowly disappear from Pergrande almost completely, the country's mage population today being almost laughable compared to what it used to be. Magic in any form, of course, is illegal, and anything magical is either looked upon with extreme suspicion and even hatred by the ordinary citizen, who has never learned anything but the information the state has provided them with, or bound for destruction by the Paladins. The few mages that exist in Pergrande today do so in hiding or as instruments of the government, escaping the Empire in one way or another, blending in with society in Pergrande as best as possible, or being used in some kind of government program to be experimented on. Citizens are regularly tested for magical capabilities and the levels of Ethernano in their bodies, meaning that hiding one's status as a mage is somewhat complicated, though it certainly has been done before. Of course, humans with the ability to use magic are still regularly born in the nation, though this fact is treated no different than any other form of magic that has to be obliterated at all costs.

    Naturally, without the wonders of magic that most other nations of Earthland are so used to, Pergrande and its citizens were forced to explore alternative options. Though the absence of magic meant a heavy blow to the nation in the beginning, economy and production declining rapidly, the ingenuity of Pergrandian scientists, coupled with a few well-placed spies in Bosconian facilities, would eventually lead to rapid technological advancement that overshadowed almost the entire rest of Ishgar by far. Modern weapons, modern machinery, modern medicine, modern chemistry, and more would swiftly fill the vacuum left behind by magic, Pergrande once more, after many years of recovery, regaining its footing as a great power, and though isolating itself from the rest of Ishgar based on their newly formed ideology of uncompromising anti-magic, Pergrande began looking past its borders once more, particularly the province of Bellum it had lost, with many conflicts following the initial Civil War between these two factions, even to this day.

    The culture of Pergrande remains not only strict but decidedly opposed to anything magical. It doesn't matter what form magic takes, as all magic is blamed for the catastrophe that occurred 500 years ago, the vast majority of Pergrandians being horrified by the thought of magic being used and counteracting the imagined threat posed by it with any means available to them. Operating on principles of deeply engrained nationalism and political ideology, Pergranti society is collectivist through and through, the monarch at the top of the social hierarchy being viewed as the savior of the people, the protector of Pergrande against the savages beyond the Empire's borders. Still, while public order has long returned to Pergrande, it comes at a price. Any dissent from the official state doctrines is met with harsh responses, the infamous forced labor camps of Pergrande's northern tundras being feared amongst those that would even think about rebelling against the Emperor's and the state's authority.

    The seat of imperial power is located in Silagrad, a city established after the calamity and the ensuing wars, the capital being moved away from the city that had originally given birth to the Empire of Pergrande, Pervaya, in the south, sitting at the estuary of the Biryuzovyy River. Though Pervaya remains not only the largest port and navy base in Pergrande, but also the largest military base in general, Silagrad is easy to reach from Pervaya, despite its location deep within the territory of the Empire, as one must simply follow the Biryuzovvy River, which, of course, would prove impossible for anyone but a Pergrandian due to the extensive defenses located all over Pergrande. Still, the Biryuzovvy, lovingly called the "Bir" by the citizens of the Empire, is a vital artery of transport, commerce, and industry that extends through much of Pergrandes territory, allowing for the relocation of massive amounts of goods, troops, and other necessities to many corners of the Pergrandean Empire. Along the river's course through the Pergrandian steppes lie a vast amount of fortresses and defenses placed in strategically important positions to ensure that this vital lifeline continues to fulfill its purpose undisturbed. The network of defenses extends to the Pergrandian border regions, as well, particularly concentrated around the nation's border with Bellum as well as the seas around it and the Wall that blocks Sin from the rest of Pergrande, as these regions present the highest risk to the Empire. In the north, Pergrande is covered with seemingly unending forests of pine trees that extend well into the massive mountain range at the nation's northern border, a terrain that is generally deemed unpassable, at least with the technological means available to the Empire, which thus mostly ignores the north due to the harsh conditions present. The midlands are mostly dominated by large, seemingly endless steppes with little to no actual elevation or variation in the terrain occurring for hundreds of miles. The mountainous border regions are mostly covered by woodlands, and to the south, near the Sin peninsula, the land now resembles Desierto more than anything, sand dunes and harsh winds making travel through the border region somewhat difficult. Yet, the smaller, though no less famous of Pergrande's rivers, River Gryaz, turns part of this desert into an oasis, the locals cultivating animals and crops among the dense lines of palm trees found nowhere else in Pergrande. Winters in Pergrande are known for being very harsh, and summers are known for being merciless, though the population of this nation are used to these conditions and are hardier for it.

    Pergrande's economy is based on a combination of its sheer industrial might, the abundance of raw resources found across its vast territory, and the agricultural sector that was developed across the nation after Sin had been lost, the nation easily being able to sustain its population by turning vast swathes of previously inaccessible terrain into usable farmland through its technological advancements. Pergrande's military, too, plays an important role in the nation's economy, as the army, navy, and air force of Pergrande are not only the biggest employers, but also the biggest consumer of goods in the nation. The Paladins, the secret police of Pergrande, which constitute an ideological sub-section of the army, have gradually transformed into an organization that wields not only great control within the nation of Pergrande and its society, but also seems to have built an information-network across Ishgar, keeping its own citizens and interests abroad in check. Their members consist of only the most capable soldiers, and even strong mages are easily defeated even by the weakest of Paladins. They are considered the elite of the elite, many of the nation's military leaders being recruited from within this organization.

    Pergrande's "ordinary" military forces are no joke, either, though. Equipped with technologically advanced gear that includes anything from mechanical exoskeletons, highly advanced weaponry, protective and tactical suits and armor, to the most advanced vehicles of war on the continent on land, sea, and in the air, bar a few exceptions such as Ca-Elum's navy, Pergrande is more than capable of standing up to mages and magecraft with ease, if not capable of overshadowing it entirely. Still, if that is not enough to convince the average magus of Pergrande's capabilities, the Empire is home to a unique metal that is only found in the northern mountains of its territory and available in large quantities, universally referred to as Pustotium. This metal is not only stronger than steel when forged correctly, but also possesses the unique property of instantly repelling Ethernano it comes in contact with. Certain concentrations of Ethernano, i.e. magical energy and spells, are instantly dispersed and rendered ineffectual by it, effectively negating the spell without any use of power or even a countering magical force. In large enough quantities, this metal can render even the strongest of spells ineffectual. It is also rumored that Pergrande possesses a way to permanently disable magic and the flow of Ethernano created from this metal, though such claims are not confirmed.

    The 3 branches of the Empire's armed forces are all lead by a high ranking military officer, with all 3 together controlling the nation's military as a whole, though the Emperor or Empress of Pergrande, of course, supersedes them in authority. Not much is known about the monarch or the imperial family of this vast Empire, as they rarely ever show themselves, though the power of the monarch is absolute. They alone make the decisions, and they alone determine what is and isn't right. Their word is law in Pergrande, and billions of people will, with the greatest of vigor, follow their every word. Pergrande maintains its isolationist attitude, though its military and its people appear ready for anything, with an opportunistic and ruthless government to control them, leaving the question for Pergrande's future open for the time being. Pergrande is, however, as any nation, more friendly with some powers than others, Bellum and Pergrande being, of course, long-standing enemies, a fact that will likely never change. Iceberg, despite its high concentration of mages, is seen as somewhat friendly in the eyes of many Pergrandeans, and as a buffer that could be used by the ruling class. Minstrel, as the second-largest nation on Ishgar, has learned many lessons from Pergrande, the former harboring sympathies for the latter, even if this fact lies perhaps simply in the fact that the two have had conflicts of interest with the same adversaries. Enca, too, looks at Pergrande as a beneficial factor for itself, its conflict with Bellum tying up the resources of the Theocracy, which has allowed it to expand at a rapid pace. All in all, however, Pergrande isn't outright friendly with these other nations, as official state doctrine and ideology forbid this, but who knows? The monarch's word is, after all, absolute, and all it would take would be a simple statement to change this reality, making the political landscape of Pergrande highly unpredictable.

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    Official Re: Official Nations of Ishgar

    Post by Admin 23rd November 2020, 6:47 am



    Enca

    Capital: Pájaro Azul
    Largest City: Pájaro Azul
    Official Language: Enci (Real-World Equivalent - Spanish)
    Government: Military Junta - Dictatorship
    Head of State: Gran Almirante of Enca
    Official Representative: Gran Almirante of Enca
    Official Governing Body: Enca Military Junta
    Head of Military: Gran Almirante of Enca
    Population: ~27,000,000
    Wizard Population: ~50%
    Economy: Decent
    Currency: Real

    Description:
    Enca is not a cohesive nation-state in terms of its territory like others in Ishgar, consisting of a group of smaller and larger islands inhabited by people that share the same culture and traditions. The native inhabitants of Enca are unique people, passionate and fiery in their endeavors, though exceedingly proud and protective of their country. And for good reason: The white sand beaches, dry forest hinterlands, and lofty mountains of Enca’s islands, which for all intents and purposes resemble small paradises, each one unique in its own right, were once bustling with both visitors and traders from all over Earthland. Through their trade with other nations, Enca acquired substantial wealth, the gold bars stacking to the ceilings of the nation’s treasury almost acquiring a legendary quality, the former King of Enca utilizing that wealth to fund the arts, sciences, and further the prestige of his nation and his people. Of course, that all changed when the closest land to Enca, the former part of Pergrande now known as Sin, was swallowed by a raging cataclysm that unleashed all manners of catastrophe onto not only the land but also the surrounding sea.

    Travel by sea became so dangerous that most of the so regular visitors and traders alike would vanish almost overnight, and even to this day, only return sporadically and in numbers that represent a fraction of what they once had been, the wealth of the nation slowly but surely beginning to dry up. Not only its dwindling funds constituted a threat to the nation of Enca, though. The coastlines, along with the internal trade routes between the islands of this once powerful and renowned state, were now becoming increasingly unsafe, with beasts and monstrosities of all kinds appearing and terrorizing these areas at random. Thus, in a decision that was ultimately fated to doom his reign, the king would divert more and more resources to the nation’s military, an institution that was growing increasingly powerful, promising the people of Enca a return to safety and stability. In more recent years, the Military of Enca has, in a spectacular coup, deposed the king and rid themselves of the royal family that has been at the head of the country’s hierarchy for centuries in a massacre that has been widely condemned by other nations. Still, the new and ambitious leader of this nation, a man titled “Gran Almirante”, formerly the leader of Enca’s vital naval forces, wouldn’t let himself be deterred by such actions, taking control of the nation’s politics and assuming hegemony over the country’s combined military forces, a move that was widely celebrated by the frightened and now impoverished people of Enca. Promising wide reforms and strong national defense to both protect the country from outside incursions and attempt to regain its old position on the regional stage of power politics, Enca has severely increased its efforts to expand both its army and navy, recruiting record numbers of new soldiers and sailors and building some of Earthland’s most formidable modern warships, rivaling those of Pergrande and even Ca-Elum in power and technology, though they are not as numerous as the navies of these two nations. Still, Enca is a nation with very clear ambitions and local influence, any knowledgeable traveler that thinks something of themselves being able to tell you that Encans, while making formidable and friendly hosts, can be just as fierce in war as they are in matters of passion.

    Enca’s largest city, which simultaneously serves as the nation’s capital, is sharing its name with the river that bisects it, called so due to its rapid and unpredictable currents resembling an erratic avian in flight. The capital is situated at the estuary of its most prominent and known geographical feature. The harbor of Pájaro Azul serves both as one of Enca’s various trading ports, the biggest one in the nation, as well as the nation’s largest army and navy base, the military keeping the city within a firm grip, not only to uphold public order, but primarily to protect its most important civilian and government assets, the Gran Almirante of Enca residing in the former royal palace, more or less aptly renamed “Palace of the People”. The rest of Enca’s population is concentrated within coastal and inland cities scattered around the various islands that make up this country, all of which are similarly controlled and protected by army divisions, political commissars, and formidable warships, as well as rural communities that have remained largely untouched by time, advancing technology, and other developments. These villages are largely specialized on working the more temperate regions of Enca’s hinterland. Most people here live the humble life of a farmer, craftsman, trader, or other appropriate professions, and the troubles of the military and the bigger cities seem distant, and though they occasionally spill into the countryside and create unrest, most people are content with raising cattle, growing grains, vegetables, fruit, and producing other goods that have acquired almost mystical quality outside of the island nation, Enci wine and foods being especially popular.

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    Official Re: Official Nations of Ishgar

    Post by Admin 23rd November 2020, 6:48 am



    Sin

    Capital: N/A
    Largest City: Krathrat
    Official Language: Davni (Real-World Equivalent - Croatian)
    Government: Anarchy
    Head of State: N/A
    Official Representative: N/A
    Official Governing Body: N/A
    Head of Military: N/A
    Population: ~50,000
    Wizard Population: 100%
    Economy: Very Poor
    Currency: Tradable Goods

    Description:
    Sin is most aptly described as a hellscape type of environment, both in the physical landscape and the sparse inhabitants. Once thought to be void of human residents, there are actually a few small settlements randomly placed throughout the hostile peninsula’s jagged mountain areas. Sinnites are a hardy bloodline of people that seem to live outside of time. They are secretive and prefer to stay hidden, hardly ever interacting with other settlements, let alone the outside world unless driven to by survival or some other rare circumstance. They are not ignorant people, but their isolationist and aggressive ways make it hard to communicate effectively with them. If bothered too long, they are just as hostile to outsiders as the demonic creatures and giant monsters that freely roam the scorched land of volcanic activity. It’s thought that the gases and black ash that cloak the territory in hazy red caused the original inhabitants to develop extremely strong magic just to survive, abilities inherited by all present-day residents. There is one settlement situated on the outskirts of Mount Bralroron that travelers might easily come across compared to other settlements. It’s called Krathrat and is incrementally more open to strangers, though that might make it even riskier for travelers to linger there.

    Each settlement functions as an independent entity ruled by a warlord of sorts. They govern themselves, generally by collectively administered punishment. Otherwise, there is little order, a lot of violence, and constant power struggles. It’s a kill or be killed, survival of the fittest mentality, likely learned from all manner of deadly creatures that outnumber humans one hundred to one. If anything can be considered a true governing system across all Sinnites, it’d be their cult-like worship. Outside mages that hang around too long might become involved in their rampant religion. When not maintaining the limited crops in the caves, hunting, or battling each other, most inhabitants are gathering supplies for their rituals and studies. Sometimes that requires human sacrifices to a mysterious god they are forbidden to write about or speak of until they ascend. Much is unknown about how the belief functions, but it seems to be mostly focused on gaining ultimate power. It is rumored that some Sinnites have completed a ritual that can meld human to demonic beast, resulting in a being they call an Alpha. Alphas are stronger than even the strongest beast or Sinnite and retain most of their human intellect despite being mostly beasts. Many Alphas remain on the peninsula as if waiting for something while they rampage, while others leave the nation by either sea or air and take an army of monsters with them to other nations.

    Sin was transformed into this burning, charred hell by a decisive event about 500 years ago, one of three in total that would hit the nation of Pergrande, which Sin had once been part of. Once known for its flourishing agriculture, fertile soils, and wide fields of crops and other grown products, this all was destroyed when a portal would open at the tip of the Sin peninsula, and although this rift in time and space would only remain open for moments, it would bring forth the most horrible abominations Earthland had seen to this day which infested the province like a plague. Further, searing heat accompanied this incursion, a wave of flame and fire spreading across the peninsula in an unparalleled inferno that instantly killed most of the inhabitants of this once-peaceful part of Ishgar and burned the famous, golden fields of Sin to ashes in a matter of seconds. Still, it seemed that some of the former inhabitants had survived, albeit barely, organizing themselves to make sure that they would stay alive for the foreseeable future, doing whatever it takes.

    Sin’s landscape is so unforgiving that it can only grow gnarled root vegetables and darkened greens in damp, humid caves to sustain its small population. Meat is hunted from the hostile beasts such as Vulcans and Wyverns, but since they choose to keep to themselves, they don’t attempt to export. Trading amongst themselves and nearby settlements is common. Even if they wished to attempt to export, the Great Wall of Sin cuts them off from the only country they border, Pergrande.

    Overall, Sin is a dangerous and deadly nation. The sun is shaded by the acrid volcanic materials in the air, shading everything in an eerie red haze and turning the barren terrain black. Deep chasms rend the ground left and right while jagged obsidian juts up into terrible mountains. There are more actively erupting volcanoes on this small strip of land than there are in all of Ishgar. Pulsing lava rivers keep the air hotter than summertime Desierto all year round. All manner of demons and monsters walk these lands and should one run into a Sinnite, one best not linger. If all of this is not enough to doom nearly anyone unfortunate enough to venture into Sin, encountering an Alpha will likely put an end to all hope of making it out alive.


      Current date/time is 26th February 2021, 6:00 pm