Civilizations on the continent of Quorra
Stillport is the largest and most diverse city on Quorra, founded on the Bay of Stillwaters for it’s highly profitable fishing industry as well as the fertile farmland that surrounds the area. Despite it’s other profitable industries, trade has made the city of Stillport flourish, and the council has deals in place with Cyndrael, Vahemar, Athor and even the dragonborn city of Quarth to the South. Trade with Vahemar and Athor is quickly dying, however, as it becomes more and more difficult to travel the Karitha Mountains.
While each city has it’s own crime problems, the criminal underground of Stillport is the largest and most rampant of any other city. The council meant to run the city is almost wholly corrupt and under the influence of the thieves’ guild known as the Dragon’s Tooth, and pirates often plunder trade ships going in and out of the harbor. Though the Dragon’s Teeth is the largest guild in the city (it is speculated to span across the continent, maintaining a presence in every city), there are many other organizations that often squabble among themselves, always looking to be the next group on top. Despite these constant terf wars, however, most honest residents of the city don’t feel threatened enough to consider leaving— it is rumored there is a deal in place that relegates most crime to specific areas, and anyone who gets the idea of crossing these boundaries is swiftly dealt with, making the Dragon’s Tooth guild the picture of organized crime.
This elvish city in the north has a colored history, spanning centuries. The city had long been home to high elves and wood elves alike, welcoming of travelers and trade alike. The city is ruled by a king and queen, with an assortment of noble families always vying for as much power as they can grasp. Nearly thirty years ago, the balance between the high elves and wood elves was disrupted, with a sudden outcry for isolation rising after rumors of a possible plague reached the city. Cyndrael erupted into civil war where the high elves ultimately took power, and every wood elf faction was ousted from the city. Trade became much more regulated, and most visitors, if not outright rejected entry, were looked upon with great disdain. Despite the recent turmoil and change of power, Cyndrael remains a powerful force on Quorra.
Alithan, literally the elvish words for Crossroads, was originally settled by a group of half elves who felt they could never belong to a human or elvish civilization. The settlement quickly grew due to commerce between Cyndrael, Stillport, and Merthan, and the half elves formed a council to rule. It is now often considered a safe haven for those who feel they can’t fit in anywhere else, and is a surprisingly diverse mixture of races. When the wood elf factions were ousted from Cyndrael, the council of Alithan accepted them with open arms, and these wood elves now make up a significant portion of the city’s populace.
The Dwarven city of Merthan is settled within the mountains slightly east of the Arlithan crossroads. The dwarves there are mostly concerned with their own affairs, though they still engage in trade with Cyndrael, Stillport, and Arlithan. They have been ruled by a queen (dornessi) known as Valyent for nearly a century, and show no signs of changing their traditions anytime soon. They communicate often with their sister city of Maltha, though it has become more difficult with the loss of the passage across the Karitha mountains.
The city of Datharan was once an extravagant city, powered by the greatest mages in the world. It was a place of research and teaching, serving as a hub for mages to meet and share knowledge without scrutiny. Roughly 12 years ago, a spell went horribly wrong under mysterious circumstances, and the city was destroyed, leaving a gigantic lake in its place. The mages that survived scattered across the continent, mourning the loss of so much magical knowledge for years to come.
The Western Civilizations
The city and kingdom of Vahemar is the second largest on Quorra, and consists mainly of humans, though other races are welcome within the city. It is a city devoted to worship of a panel of deities as well as nature, making it a hub for clerics and druids across the world. The city is run by a council, with a seat given to the head priest or priestess of every deity represented within the city. The city is surrounded by mountains, and it often remarked as being incredibly still due to a lack of wind. The Great River of Pelor begins in the city and flows southward, allowing for trade with the city of Athor. Despite the philosophical differences between the two, Vahemar maintains a strong relationship with Stillport in the east, and used to have a strong relationship with Cyndrael, though the kingdoms fell out of contact after civil war struck the elvish kingdom. Vahemar is also in strong contact with the neighboring kingdom of Maltha, as the dwarves there also hold nature and certain deities in strong reverence.
The sister-city to Merthan, this dwarven city relies more on magic than mining and forgery, creating shrines to various deities. Instead of living within the mountain, the dwarves of Merthan reside more in crafted buildings on the outside of the mountains, their constitution strong enough to withstand the cold. A high priestess rules the city, though she is rarely seen and there are rumors that she may not even be dwarven. The dwarves here are unconcerned about maintaining relationships with other kingdoms, though they associate often with Vahemar, and a hand of friendship will always be extended to their gnomish cousins, whether they are from the southern city of Athor or somewhere else entirely.
The city of Athor is comprised almost entirely of gnomes and halflings, and it’s buildings reflect as such. Unused to many other travelers, very few buildings beyond several inns can accommodate the larger races. Located at the fork in the Great River of Pelor, the city thrives on the fishing industry, and each gnome and halfling is proficient in the art of river boating— an essential aspect of their culture as the city expands onto all sides of the river. As such, there are many instances of piracy across the river, though not enough to deter merchants from the hopes of profit.