The Campaign takes place in the Kingdom of Sharizarn. The Campaign takes its name from one of the prominent cities in Sharizarn, Roaric’s Glen. The City is steeped in magic and many magic schools, libraries, laboratories and crafteries for magic items are located in the City.
In 5319, Eric the Bold (now known as Eric the Usurper), King Gareth’s stepson, took the crown of the neighboring Kingdom of Halindon (ally of The Kingdom of Sharizarn). King Gareth (a widely loved and just ruler) was killed and his court was disbanded or put to the sword. Nobles who supported King Gareth, with help from Sharizarn, formed a resistance and attempted to overthrow King Eric and his mother Queen Deidre.
In 5322, forces from the Kingdom of Volga invaded Sharizarn. Volga is a mountainous kingdom in a cold region to the north of Sharizarn. While there are high plains where crops and livestock are raised, Volga tends to hover on the brink of starvation much of the time. In the past, Volga and Sharizarn have been trading partners, but Volga found itself in a particularly dire condition. Volga has historically dismissed the military power of Sharizarn and, seeing Sharizarn embroiled in the civil unrest in Halindon, struck hoping to capture food reserves and force Sharizarn into a trade deal that would help Volga avoid starvation.
The war with Volga forced Sharizarn to limit and eventually end its support of the resistance in Halindon. Without the support provided by Sharizarn, the resistance faltered and by 5323, King Eric was able to consolidate his power and established a sense of order in the Kingdom. The Malakian Empire annexed the Halindon and name Deidre Queen Regent in 5324 in an apparently bloodless coup. King Eric has not been seen in public since the annexation. Most in Halindon assume he was quietly exiled or executed.
By 5328, the war with Volga had stalled with Sharizarn having lost some territory, but Volga’s strategic position weakening. By the summer of that year, The Kingdom of Aenlan invaded the west coast of Volga. As Volga had with Sharizarn, Aenlan, an island kingdom in the Great Ocean, saw weakness in their neighbor and decided to take the opportunity to capture a continental seaport. Then in the fall, Ice Demons began to pour into Volga from “The Land of Forever Winter” that borders to the north and west of Volga. With two enemies on their flank, Volga began to withdraw from Sharizarn and by the end of the year they were ready to sue for peace. Rather than take advantage of their former enemy’s weakness, King Lucian of Sharizarn gave King Maxim of Volga generous terms. The Volgan army was allowed to withdraw peacefully, prisoners of war were exchanged without ransom, and no tribute was required of Volga. King Lucian stopped short of offering assistance to Volga in facing their new opponents; however, since peace was declared the two rulers have become friends and Sharizarn has quietly supplied materials and equipment to assist the Volgans in the war against the Ice Demons.
Once the war with Volga was over, Sharizarn attempted to renew the resistance in Halindon. King Gareth’s brother Duke Stephen was living in exile far to the south in Etruscia. Sharizarn agents brought Duke Stephen to Sharizarn and began sending support and agents to Halindon (now part of the Malakian Empire). By 5330 the Malakian Empire had grown tired of Sharizarn’s efforts in Halindon and used the interference as an excuse to declare war on Sharizarn.
Staring as early as 5320, the Malakian Empire began to make alliances among the non-human races in the wilderness between Sharizarn and Halindon. The various tribes of mostly goblins (but including bugbears, and some hobgoblins) were recruited to harass and hinder Sharizarn’s efforts in Halindon and generally occupy the Kingdom. By 5329, following the end of the war between Sharizarn and Volga, the Malakian Empire was able to find a leader for the goblin army, Chief Gerdeljec. Gerdeljec was a chief of one of the more powerful goblin tribes. Gerdeljec was able to unite tribes of goblins, hobgoblins, bugbears, and kobolds. He was also able to bring ogres, giants and a few dragons to his banner. By the time the war started in fall of 5330, The Goblin Army of King Gerdeljec stood between Sharizarn and Halindon. The Goblin Army invaded the Kingdom of Sharizarn in 5331 and destroyed the Village of Borderton and laid siege to Castle Angorn (the Battle of Borderton will be detailed later).
The power of The Goblin Army initially overwhelmed the defenders, but the might of the Sharizarn Army was not to be taken lightly. The Sharizarn army was able to hold The Goblin Army at Borderton with the aid of the magic of Roaric’s Glen. Unfortunately, the Malakian Empire’s army also invaded Sharizarn from the former Kingdom of Autelhus (conquered by Malaki in 5314), and most of the Sharizarn forces were needed to hold back the regular Malakian army in the south.
The war between Sharizarn and Malaki has raged for five years. In late 5335, the Sharizarn Army with significant support from Roaric’s Glen attempted to break the siege of Castle Angorn and defeat The Goblin Army once and for all. By this spring (5336, the current year), the Battle of Borderton was over, the Goblin Army broken, King Gerdeljec and several of his giants and dragons, dead.
Now, the Sharizarn Army is working to reopen the road that leads to Kretcher in western Halindon (the closest city in Halindon), and rebuild the Village of Borderton. Because of the help that had been provided to Castle Angorn and the villagers of Borderton during the war by the Lizardfolk of the fens to the south of the village, they have become allies of the Crown. The Lizardfolk are aiding in the restoration of the village (they have no interest in living in the village, but want to learn about the skills of the humans).
Now that the Goblin Army has been broken, a number of adventurers, merchants, soldiers, and priests have come to the area to help redevelop the village, and take advantage of the opportunity to bring the fight to Malaki.
Sharizarn – The Kingdom of Sharizarn is a large nation known as the World’s Pantry. The vast plains of Sharizarn grow a variety of crops and agriculture in Sharizarn is among the most sophisticated and efficient in the known world. This, along with the emphasis on magic and scholarship, has made Sharizarn a wealthy and powerful nation. Sharizarn is also known as a stable nation. King Lucian is the 16th King of Sharizarn from the same bloodline. Nobles of Sharizarn have credited their Laws of Succession, the wide availability of education, the lack of slavery and the large number of freed men in the Kingdom for much of the stability.
Halindon – The former Kingdom of Halindon (now the Malakian Protectorate of Armstel) was a nation known for its mining, metallurgy, military academies, and strong wines. The fact that the resistance has held on as long as it has in Halindon is a testament to the military discipline inherent in the Halindonian culture. Perhaps it is the pervasive military culture that has also resulted in a history of difficult relationships with its neighbors. While Sharizarn has been an ally in recent times, this is not the first time Sharizarn troops have marched into Halindon, but it is the first time they have entered the nation to defend rather than attack it.
Volga – The Kingdom to the north of the Kruestov Mountains is known as a harsh land of rugged terrain, bitterly-cold winters and hardy warriors. The Kingdom of Volga is popularly know as the “Son of Winter” having been born out of the Land of Forever Winter to the west of the Frostgate Mountains. The villages of eastern Volga cling to the cold dry steppes of eastern Volga like moss on a stone. Only the port city of Nitkin could be seen as prosperous. The northern portions of Volga are said to be uncharted and much of the kingdom is unknown to outsiders. The people of Volga claim that no invader has ever conquered their land and this is the foundation of their national identity. They see themselves as resilient, resourceful and unstoppable. They view outsiders as weak, foolish, and inferior. Volga depends on the wealth in the mines in the Kruestov Mountains for most of their trade, and dwarves and humans in the kingdom have forged strong bonds over millennia of trade and cooperation.
Malakian Empire – Emperor Malaki is seen as a ruthless dictator and terrible despot by those outside the Empire, but to the people of the Empire (especially from the lands of Yuso, Vretch, Narbec and Atyuso, fractured states first conquered by Malaki), he is seen as a hero. Willing to stand up to the more powerful and civilized kingdoms that have long exploited the smaller kingdom’s weakness. The Empire also encompasses the wealthy and cultured Kingdom of Autelhus, and the naval power of the Azure Sea, Kalatos. They also have strong ties with the Tyrian Empire, powerful merchants who deal in goods from the other side of the world, and have a reputation for fearlessness and ruthlessness born from their supplication to demons.