|Population||2,508,960 Common: (humans, lucht siuil, oruch), Uncommon: (giantborn, gnomes, khazad, half-orcs, half-elves), Rare: (sith-makar)|
|Government||Free Cities, Independent Kingdoms, Tribal Leadership, Clans and other Communities|
|Imports||Books, manufactured items, magic items, pottery, explorers|
|Exports||Furs, gems, mercenaries, precious metals, exotic animals|
|Affiliated Characters||From the Vast|
West of the heartlands and sundering the continent are the great rolling plains of The Vast. It is an exotic region of mysteries, legends and wild magic. The Vast, it is said, was once the site of the last battle in the legendary Daemon Wars. The area is seeded with mystery, magic, underground caverns and ruinous sights. Areas of wild magic, strange phenomena and preternatural occurrences have given it a reputation of untold danger and great adventure and beauty. Some have told stories of attempting to travel across The Vast and literally stepping across several planes due to invisible broken barriers between other realms. Their travels cut well in half by their planar jumps. Others have reported areas where time seems literally broken and things seem to slow down and speed up and one can get a glimpse of the past or possible futures. It is said that after a fashion, The Vast lives and knows where to drop a soul where they are need to be.
Life and Society
Some simply refer to The Vast as the Great Plains of Arcania. The outer fringes of this vast countryside consist of rolling hills broken up by fertile grasslands and deciduous woods which are criss crossed by trade roads linking The Seven Cities; small farming communities and trading towns of both halfling and human control. A tapestry of history plays itself out for those who attempt to cross The Vast. Many ruins dating back from the ancient world exist here. The remains of long abandoned keeps, now conquered by the slow daunting advance of nature. There are giants
here, towering sentinels that rise up from the landscape as if shaped by a gigantic hand, huge immense statues of mighty warriors and kings of old. Beautiful, nearly untouched by nature with a thousand years having come and gone, the deepest portions of The Vast are home to a beautiful people known as The Tsurai. Olive-skinned lovers of trade, dance, commerce, song and performance, they roam The Vast in communities known as The Faring Folk in their brightly colored caravans.
They have such a loose perception of personal property that the most renown of thieves and acrobats often emerge from their ranks with circus performances by them being known all across the known world. Halflings mingle amongst these people freely with several established communities here patrolled by fierce outriders and rangers. Red hued, tall and fierce barbarian horsemen known as The Phurai Dae, dwell in The Vast. Life for this honorable tribe of nomadic horsemen is hard at times but their spirit remains unbroken despite the wandering monsters that dwell herein.
Outwardly they are joyful though not nearly as showy as The Tsurai, their shamans are mighty and the hills and steppes are often filled with tales of their passing in the form of their art, stories and totems. There is no government ruling The Vast. The roving bands have an established hierarchy of ruling princes and senior council members and all of the various settlements are self-governing with established High Mayors and local authorities. The Seven Cities are unified by a oligarchy that maintains order and trade whilst the Phuri Dae rely upon tribal leaders and guidance from their shamans and druids.
The weak planar walls that separate it from the outer worlds characterize the Vast. The weakening of the walls is the result of both the effects of the ancient sundering of the world and the use of powerful magics and the presence of mighty outsiders during the last battles of the Daemon Wars. Here, in The Vast, one can begin travelling and step across different planes without realizing it, ending up miles off their original course. Or they can step into wrinkles and cracks in time itself, having days go by for them when it's merely minutes for others. From some of these holes, mighty planar beasts sometimes emerge and make their way across the lands. In some rare cases they become trapped such as the gigantic Kadtanach, a colossal creature of such staggering size that entire fortresses and castles are built along its back. Thankfully only a few of these have ever appeared on Arcania although several became cultivated and bred by The Dran of the north.
Races and Regions
Gnomes: Gnomes love the Vast. Everyone is afraid to ask why.
Gobbers: Gobber caravans thrive in the Vast, though struggle to get a toe-hold, due to established competition by the lucht.
Oruch: Some oruch rove the planes, though in fewer numbers than in Dran. It is rumored that forgotten fragments of the clans were sent here, during ancient wars, due to the region's unstable nature.
Sith-makar: A few rifts from Am'shere open to this area, and so explorers and representatives from the tribes may be found.
War Golems: War Golems are known to the Vast. Sometimes, these beings are uncovered from an emerging Rift, or tumbled landscape--having been forgotten or vanished for ages.
...As always, reasonable assumptions may be made how different races adapt to regions based on their files. Feel free to get creative. The above should be considered a sweeping statement or generality--that is, local perceptions, not a requirement.
Major Geographical Features
Due to its location, it effectively sections off the northwest from thecentral and south central regions of the world. Attempts have been made at charting safe passage across it with varying degrees of success. Only the native inhabitants truly know how to navigate The Vast without fear of its various wonders and magical occurrences. The deepest portions are often inhabited by tribes of monstrous humanoids and others who have learned the secrets of this exotic land.
The Sea of Sundered Time: Shattered doorways that give glimpses into times long gone or hints of things to come float their way lazily across the windswept hills and grassy knolls of this area. Shimmering pieces of gathered light characterize these shattered pieces of time itself and sometimes they sweep over unwary travelers and snatch them away - slowing the count of time for them so that days, sometimes even weeks or months pass for the rest of the world while they themselves trek across this landscape feeling as if barely a single day has passed. Rumors exist of being able to enter into the Tapestry of Time itself, in this location.
The Shining Reaches: Abandoned windmills and enormous statues from the ancient world dot this great landscape which is roamed by Wemics, Centaurs and tribes of Phurai Dai. Several human cities exist here as well on the outskirts of the depths of this domain.
The Broken Plains: Perhaps one of the most famous areas of The Vast, The Broken Plains were created by a massive cataclysmic use of magic (known as Paramount Spells) during the last battles of the Daemon Wars. Hordes of demons, devils and infernal creatures were caught up in the conflagration as well as armies of the forces of light as the spell literally ripped holes in the walls between this world and the next. Over time the damage caused by the spell has partially healed but it has left behind it areas of wild magic, areas dead of magic all together and literal invisible holes that lead from one plane to another. Travelers have tried to navigate The Broken Plains and have told tales of stepping across streams to suddenly find themselves in a realm of clockworks and living machines, or reaching a cliff to find themselves looking beyond it to an endless expanse of air with no land visible. Members of The Phurai Dae have a special magic and items that they use to navigate the Broken Plains known as Gate-Wards, and merchants and explorers often hire them and use their expertise to cross this land safely.
The Five Shires: The ancestral home of halfling kind and the source of many halflings who join The Faring Folk on their sojourn to many parts of The Vast and lands beyond. Halflings dwell here in organized clans and follow a very animistic and agrarian lifestyle with simple outlooks on things and an adventurous spirit at their heart.
The Vast in recent times has remained largely unchanged. As one Veyshanti bard wrote: "Even the Dranei armies did not dare invade the Vast, for its landscape is weapon in and of itself, and it has few cities to conquer. One can not lay claim to the vast anymore than one can hold a fistfull of sand."
Editor's Note: We're still working on fleshing out these sections as we go. PI sections will contain stock descriptions, and suggestions for encounters, as well as other items that may be helpful. In the meantime, please bear with us. There's a lot of ground to cover!
The Vast used to consist primarily of great, rolling plains. However, since the Daemon Wars, its landscape may alter, warp, or change at random. Of a particular flavor to the region, Vast-Wrought creatures may be found here.