Lords of Chaos
Countries and Polities
The following is a list of the major countries/polities in alphabetical order. In some instances, a brief description in parenthesis follows the name. This is simply to give a little flavor of it’s mundane (our world) equivalent, but this is not an exact match and there will exist major divergences.
There are also many small kingdoms and other political entities scattered about, sometimes even appearing in what appears to be an otherwise homogeneous nation. In some cases the “host” country is aware of their existence and allows it for some reason, in others they may be ignorant.
Anivere- (non-island Medieval England)
Geography- 289k sq.mi. Mostly temperate forest that is slightly cool and rainy.
Government- A feudal system with a king and powerful nobles.
Population and Races- Human dominated society, but decent populations of other races and a high tolerance for them.
Culture- Known for their efficient bureaucracy and understated self-confidence. Their poor food is the punch line of many jokes from other nations.
Economy and Trading- Excellent traders with a strong naval (and fishing) tradition. Import iron and gems from the Iron Mountains (mainly Dal-Tahir) and food from Garaeth (when not at war with them). Also timber from the Middle Kingdoms. Export fish and manufactured goods.
Military- Excellent soldiers who excel at fighting in units. Small professional army supplemented with citizens from the feudal system in time of need. Famed (or feared) for their longbow men. Powerful navy with a large fleet.
Allies and Rivals- Usually allied to The Rivermen (to greater or lesser degrees), and has allied with the surrounding humanoid countries (including Garaeth) to fight large goblinoid incursions. Has a long-term rivalry with Garaeth and has fought multiple wars with them.
Geography- 262k sq.mi. The most powerful dwarven empire, located in the Iron Mountains. Most of the dwellings and cities are underground.
Government- Ruled with the iron (and gem encrusted) fist of The King of The Dwarves.
Population and Races- Dwarven dominated society. Other races can be found, particularly those who like underground living. Non-dwarven ideas allowed, but you’d best keep it quiet.
Culture- Culture built around the connection to the earth. Known for their rather wealth oriented philosophy of life. Known for their excesses- whether it be working, fighting, drinking, or holding grudges.
Economy and Trading- Mining, and the export iron, gems, and manufactured goods (especially weapons and armor). Import food and rare gems.
Military- Good soldiers, masters of siege warfare and tenacious defense. Fight as clans, with each individual clan providing whatever mix of soldiers are appropriate or available for their unit. Some clans do specialize in specific aspects of warfare.
Allies and Rivals- Friendly with whatever humanoid nation will buy their products. Has had skirmishes with The North on multiple occasions. Always a touchy relationship with the Sylvenian Confederacy, although they have allied in the past. Engaged in constant warfare (with varying degrees of intensity) with the Theocracy of Rai-dul and The Orkan Horde. Also enemies with the Land of Giants and other creatures that interfere with their pushes into the Iron Mountain range.
Dominion of Angar the Undying- (Mad Max without the cars but with undead!)
Geography- 675k sq.mi. Dry steppes in the middle of the continent. Endless tracks of waste. The edges of the territory are often marked with totems, often including body parts of (usually slain) enemies.
Government- The complete and absolute rule of Angar the Undying. It is unknown whether he is a god, a lich, or something else. He is reported to be at least thousands of years old.
Population and Races- Undead from the lowest zombies and skeletons all the up to vampires and liches. Plus a menagerie of other, generally evil, creatures.
Culture- Hatred of all life, although some living creatures are tolerated if they serve Angar.
Economy and Trading- No economy or trading to speak of. Sometimes surrounding areas will be raided to supply bodies for rituals, experiments, or the creation of more undead warriors.
Military- Hordes of undead backed with powerful creatures of evil. There does not tend to be standard tactics, equipment, etc.
Allies and Rivals- Occasional groups or armies will come from other nations to fight under Angar’s banner. These are mostly from the Theocracy of Rai-dul, The Orkan Horde, or The Goblin Marches. Tul Amangier is the most hated enemy. Many other “crusaders” come to fight evil, often led by Anivere or Garaeth.
Five Banners Kingdoms- (Medieval China)
Geography- Temperate forest with five always competing and occasionally united kingdoms.
An-Shih – 207k sq.mi.
Laio-Pai – 220k sq.mi.
Chang – 434k sq.mi.
He-jiang – 289k sq.mi.
Xihou – 207k sq.mi.
Government- A feudal system with each kingdom ruled by a king. A powerful enough king can be elevated to Emperor, who in theory rules all the kingdoms through their kings.
Population and Races- Human dominated society, but many other races and all are welcome if they toe the line.
Culture- Respect of your rulers and commitment to society is stressed. A very diverse cultural heritage with a blending of arts and sciences from around the world.
Economy and Trading- Consummate traders, although strive to be self-sufficient in all things. Have a particular fondness for unique items from exotic lands.
Military- A few small, elite units, but largely rely on conscripted peasant levies for major engagements. The levies tend to be poorly armed and trained, but rely on overwhelming numbers.
Allies and Rivals- Have no true allies, as barbarians (i.e. all others) are never to be completely trusted. Often are war with The Orkan Horde and/or the Theocracy of Rai-dul. They have a strained relationship with Tohongo. Spend much of their energy maneuvering against their sister kingdoms.
Geography- nominally 330k sq.mi. Clinging to the temperate zone among the low mountains and foothills.
Government- A sort of libertarian paradise. Most communities are self-run, often with a strong personality or a small group of individuals who help things run smoothly.
Population and Races- A collection of the riff-raff of the earth, where humanoids, goblinoids (over 50% of the population), and others live side by side. Population is thinly scattered, although there are concentrations in a few key cities and areas.
Culture- A huge melting pot of different cultures and ideas, although a strong theme of independence weaves throughout. All are accepted here (if they don’t cause trouble) and most people just mind their own business.
Economy and Trading- Trade goods and services for crusader gold. They don’t allow crusading armies to move through their territory, but happy to equip them.
Military- A heavily armed population- men, women, and even children once they are old enough. Have a few professional soldiers (usually more like sheriffs) and a good number of highly competent rangers patrolling the frontier. When the need arises people step up as they may. If outnumbered or out powered, they are not afraid to revert to guerrilla warfare tactics until the aggressor goes away.
Allies and Rivals- Crusaders are their nominal allies, although they are more customers (and sometimes have ransacked the place) then friends. Otherwise don’t have an outward looking foreign policy. A constant low-level conflict with the Dominion of Angar occasionally boils over. They are usually ignored by Tul Amangier, since they compete for the business of crusaders and generally don’t formally go to each other’s aid during conflicts.
Garaeth- (Medieval France)
Geography- 289k sq.mi. Temperate climate with some of the most fertile soil in the world.
Government- Feudal system with a very powerful king and central bureaucracy.
Population and Races- Human-centric society. Nominally tolerant of other races, but a heavy underlying current of prejudice.
Culture- Famed for their arts, sophistication, exquisite foods and wines, and the very flower of the Chivalric ideal. They’re also happy to remind you of these things.
Economy and Trading- Export arts, foods and beverages. Import iron from Dal-Tahir, seafood from Anivere, lumber from the Middle Kingdoms, and manufactured goods.
Military- A small professional army supplemented through feudal obligations when needed. Have some of the best knights in the known world. Decent soldiers but tend to emphasize individual, rather than group, glory.
Allies and Rivals- Get along better with the Syvenian Confederacy than any of the other human-centric nations (although they have had some run-ins in the past). Perpetual rival in Anivere, although they have allied against goblinoid incursions or other emergencies. Tend to annoy Dal-Tahir with their arrogance (reminds them too much of the elves).
Geography- Giant raised crater in the middle of the steppes, created during the battle of god brothers Arathan and Raidan during the Gods War. A strange area rich in plant and animal life, constantly filled with mist although it rarely rains. Navigation is extremely difficult and the territory is reported to seem larger than the diameter of the crater would suggest.
Government- To the extent it is understood, tribal leaders.
Population and Races- Dominated by humans and their enemies the broos. Most creatures who inhabit this land are either magical or infused with magic.
Culture- Warrior culture, it has produced some great heroes. Its young warriors can often be found out adventuring or on their Warrior Name Quest. Cultural pursuits that don’t have a use in fighting are rare.
Economy and Trading- Self-sustaining area that rarely trades with outsiders.
Military- Broos bands occasionally leave to raid. The humans have no standing army and are not aggressive outside their borders. They have never been conquered by outsiders- a few armies have gone in, and never come out.
Allies and Rivals- Too wrapped up in their internal (human vs. broo) conflicts to get involved with outsiders. Of course individuals will sometimes join causes outside of Godsholme.
Hill Tribes- (stone age tribes with occasional technology upgrades)
Geography- 661k sq.mi. Temperate hilly area, very primitive and undeveloped.
Government- Local tribal structure.
Population and Races- A collection of primitive tribes, both humanoid and goblinoid (and mixed).
Culture- Suspicious of outsiders of any type or their influences.
Economy and Trading- Mainly hunting, gathering, and some primitive farming. Well-made weapons and armor are prized items for purchase or “liberation”.
Military- Have never united to venture outside their area, but will come together in their dislike of interlopers. Occasional bands leave to become raiders or mercenaries in the employ of other nations.
Allies and Rivals- No allies, although will sometimes hire out if the price is right. Dislike all others, with a particular hate for Nyssia and its slave raids.
Geography- A powerful city-state sitting on the junction of two rivers on the steppes.
Government- Ruled by a Lord Mayor, backed by a powerful 11 member council.
Population and Races- Population 43.7k, or 55k counting surrounding area. Human-centric, with a mix of races and nationalities befitting its position on the continent. Large contingent of dwarves.
Culture- Different cultures clash, merge, cohabit, and create new ideas. Different wards (districts) in the city tend to have different flavors.
Economy and Trading- A trading city that sits on the major trade routes between north, south, east, and west. All manner of goods flow through their gates.
Military- A well-equipped and professional army. Supplemented with citizen militia and/or mercenaries when needed.
Allies and Rivals- Irongate tries to remain neutral in most conflicts, and therefore tends to not have strong or consistent allies. Occasionally suffer raids from The Orken Horde, but have also been attacked by crusaders coming out of the west on their way to the fighting farther east.
Land of Giants-.
Geography- Rugged, forested, mountain terrain. Some active volcanos.
Government- Giants tend to be solitary, although bands will usually have a leader, and there is often a self-proclaimed king (or kings) of both the frost and fire giants.
Population and Races- Mainly frost and fire giants. Other creatures are slaves, food, or useful in some other way. The fire giants are clustered around some active volcanos.
Culture- Warrior culture and the strong should rule. A chip on their big shoulders that giants are not more influential in world affairs. Luckily they don’t play well together, and rarely unite (although it has never been good when they have).
Economy and Trading- Hunting and food animal husbandry. They don’t trade, they take what they want.
Military- Usually found individually. When in groups they tend to each do their own thing, even if united in a common cause or goal.
Allies and Rivals- Tend to get along better with goblinoids- with their proper respect of might makes right, vs. humanoids- who have all kinds of ideas of the weak leading the strong. Spend most of their energy fighting amongst themselves, particularly frost vs. fire.
Middle Kingdoms- (Medieval Germany before unification)
Geography- 551k sq.mi. Heavily forested temperate area.
Government- Many small princedoms, fiefdoms, duchies, etc. Run by royalty, warlords, or just plain bandits. Some well-known kingdoms include the Duchy of Corin and the Duchy of Solay.
Population and Races- Human centric, with a relatively large population of elves and dwarves, sometimes living in their own areas. Groupings are usually by tribe.
Culture- A warrior culture valuing simplicity and with a distain for pretense. Even kings and lords are often seen among their people.
Economy and Trading- Export lumber, exotic animals, and furs. Import manufactured goods.
Military- Extremely brave, but not particularly good working together as units. Different tribes may unite to face a common foe, but often spend as much energy watching their allies as their enemies.
Allies and Rivals- Traditional first line of defense against goblinoid invasions from the east. Their chief rivals are their fellow states and tribes.
Nyssian Empire- (Ancient Egypt)
Geography- 150k sq.mi. An empire clinging to the river in the steppes. Roughly 1500 miles long and only 50 miles wide in most places.
Government- Ruled with absolute authority by the Pharaoh. All the long line of Pharaohs have claimed to be descendants of gods.
Population and Races- Human centric, although all races are found here. You are either a Nyssian citizen, a slave, or a foreigner passing through (no matter how long you’ve lived there).
Culture- Known for their heavy use of slaves, poison, and embalming their dead (at least the wealthy and powerful ones).
Economy and Trading- Heavy trade in slaves (mostly captured from the Hill Tribes or The Orkan Horde). Export some food during good times, and import lumber and metals from whoever has the best price.
Military- Cities along the river are generally walled (the empire lacks depth). A hard core professional army is backed by local levees and slaves. The army is highly mobile and the units are named after major gods. Has a powerful and wide-ranging navy.
Allies and Rivals- Generally gets along with the Five Banners Kingdoms. Other humanoid nations overlook their use of slaves to different degrees (after all, most of the slaves are goblinoids, or bandit primitives.) Enemies include the Hill Tribes and The Orkan Horde. Freeland doesn’t care much for them, but not enough to do anything about it.
Geography- 772k sq.mi. of dense rainforest.
Government- Individual tribes, each with their own leaders, often called kings. There is one king who stands above them all, although his authority is derived from tradition and the acquiescence of the other kings and must be used carefully.
Population and Races- Considered the elven “homeland”. A collection of various elven tribes. Other races are allowed, but had best follow the rules and show proper respect.
Culture- Respect of nature and its magnificent bounty. A place of elegant art, music, and appreciation of beauty in its many forms. Tend to have a superiority complex over all other races.
Economy and Trading- Export fine art, superior long and short bows. Import very little.
Military- Very disciplined, highly mobile warriors generally operating in smaller, self-contained units. Prefer fluid warfare with hit and run or guerilla tactics using magic and missile weapons.
Allies and Rivals- Tends to favor Garaeth among human centric nations, and elven mercenary archers are in demand during their skirmishes with Anivere to offset their long bow advantage. There is consistent low-level conflict among the various elven tribes unless they are uniting against a common foe. Their hated enemies are The Goblin Marches.
The Goblin Marches- (“Apocalypse Now” deep in the jungle)
Geography- 882k sq.mi. of dense rainforest.
Government- Various goblin tribes, occasionally united for short periods by a king.
Population and Races- This is where goblins are supreme! They do not allow orcs, ogres, or other goblinoid races, except as slaves or other useful (subservient) purposes into their territory.
Culture- Killing anyone other than a goblin is considered a property crime and may result in a small fine.
Economy and Trading- Not much trading, not much of economy- primitive, largely self-sufficient tribes.
Military- Horrible tactics, equipment, morale, and skills, but make up for it in sheer numbers. Prone to ambush, hit and run, attacking supply lines and softer units.
Allies and Rivals- Sometimes will work with tribes from the Hill Tribes, or join goblinoid armies attacking humanoids. Dream of destroying the Sylvenian Confederacy and all elves.
The North- (Vikings)
Geography- 585k sq.mi of evergreen trees and frozen tundra.
Government- Very independent with local rulers- kings, chiefs, warlords, etc. Occasionally united under an Overking.
Population and Races- Human centric with a decent sized dwarf population.
Culture- A harsh, cold environment means a tough living. Various clans and families compete with each other and outsiders.
Economy and Trading- Export furs and raiding parties, import captured booty.
Military- A warrior culture, prone to raiding both on land and with their feared longships.
Allies and Rivals- Generally friendly with Dal-Tahir and occasionally with the other western humanoid kingdoms (when not raiding them). Also not averse to raiding the Five Banners Kingdoms when the opportunity presents itself. Enemies with the Theocracy of Rai-dul (and by proxy, often with The Orkan Horde).
The Orkan Horde- (The Mongol Horde)
Geography- A vast and wide-ranging area of the grassy steppes.
Government- Ruled by the Khan, with individual hordes having their own princes or sometimes lesser titles.
Population and Races- A large group of nomadic goblinoids (actually many hordes that sometimes unite for a common purpose) that ride the steppes on their various mounts.
Culture- The strong survive, the weak serve or perish.
Economy and Trading- Some trading on the fringes, but mostly raiding to get what they want. Trade from east and west of their territory sometimes moves through- but it is a dangerous journey. Sometimes western trade will go around their territory through Irongate, down river to the Nyssian Empire, and by ship to the Five Banner Kingdoms- and the reverse the other way.
Military- Divided into separate hordes, usually named after a color- i.e. the Red Horde, the Green Horde, etc. Very mobile and masters at maneuver. Elite troops are almost always cavalry. Ground troops tend to be the lowest classes, conscripts, or from client states.
Allies and Rivals- Generally allied with their fellow goblinoid countries. Occasionally send “counter crusaders” to the Dominion of Angar. Particularly hate the Nyssian Empire but willing to kick anyone who is down- even “allies”.
Geography- 124k sq.mi of temperate vegetation (slanted towards coniferous) following the river system from the Iron Mountains. Their territory is north of the river with Anivere (which officially controls south of it), although they control most of the river traffic.
Government- A ruling council with limited powers. Generally those involve dealing with foreign affairs that affect the whole region and setting basic standards and laws between the various houses. Not really a nation, but a collection of independent traders and rivermen.
Population and Races- Human, but with a good percentage of both dwarves and elves. Also a higher percentage of goblinoids than found in most humanoid countries.
Culture- Very independent, self-reliant, trading oriented, and loyal to their house.
Economy and Trading- Don’t produce much, but move a lot of goods, particularly iron out of the Iron Mountains to the western kingdoms.
Military- No formal army or navy. Tend to be lighter armed and mobile. Often used as scout or skirmisher units in bigger conflicts.
Allies and Rivals- Sometimes allied with Anivere, sometimes nominally under their control, but always very independent. Anivere finds them convenient as a buffer zone against incursions from the north. They trade with The North but also tend to skirmish a bit with them, also tends to be on Garaeth’s annoyance list do to their connection with Anivere.
Theocracy of Rai-dul –
Geography- 248k sq.mi. of mountainous, temperate terrain.
Government- A strict theocracy, ruled by Raidan (allegedly), who speaks through the High Priest. Helping the High Priest carry out Raidan’s will are the Cardinals, Bishops, Priests and the feared Religious Police.
Population and Races- Goblinoid kingdom, although other races are allowed if they are fierce devotees to Raidan.
Culture- The purpose of life is to glorify Raidan, and all work and cultural endeavors should further that cause. Don’t cross the Religious Police, who have extreme powers against common citizens.
Economy and Trading- Trade mainly with The Orkan Horde. Mine iron ore, precious metals, and gems from the mountains to sell to anyone (except Dal-Tahir) who will buy to raise gold for Raidan’s glory.
Military- Highly militarized society built around serving in various religious orders, all competing for greater glory than their peers. Large variation in abilities and armament, but have some highly trained and well-equipped elite troops that rival any competitors.
Allies and Rivals- Allied with The Orkan Horde, although sometimes they lack the piety the Theocracy prefers. Occasional allies with the Goblin Marches (savages who don’t know better) and sometimes send “counter crusaders” to the Dominion of Angar. They have a particular hatred of Dal-Tahir, and are not fond of any of the humanoid kingdoms.
Tohongo Shogunate- (Tokugawa-era Japan)
Geography- 307k sq.mi. of mountainous, forested terrain spread over a string of islands.
Government- Stratified society ruled by the shogun. The rulers below the shogun are the daimyo. Next, in order of importance, come the samurai warriors, farmers and fishermen, and last- the merchants.
Population and Races- Human centric culture with decent population of elves and dwarves. The northeast most island has a mainly goblinoid population who follow the Bushido code.
Culture- Insular society focused mainly on internal struggles. Respect and honor are critical, and must particularly be shown to higher classes. The samurai code of Bushido is revered by most.
Economy and Trading- Export fish to the Five Banners Kingdoms or Tul Amangier, and import necessary items like iron. Trade is lackluster based on lack of desire to engage with the outside world.
Military- The samurai class are trained warriors since birth and are feared opponents. In times of war they are supplemented with peasant levies. The navy is very understrength and not very proficient.
Allies and Rivals- Decent relations with Tul Amangier, but otherwise don’t care enough to have true allies. Occasional problems with the Five Banners Kingdoms and are never truly friends with them even when they are on trading terms.
Geography- Largest city-state in the known world. Beacon of Light against the hordes of Angar the Undying- and often the jumping off point for crusades against him. It has never been conquered, although it has been nearly destroyed on several occasions.
Government- Ruled by the Sultan, backed by a powerful and efficient bureaucracy.
Population and Races- Human centric, although many races come and go and tolerance is high.
Culture- Highly varied culture with a vibrant and resilient population. Used to being under a perpetual state of war (even though at times it simmers to a low level). A true melting pot of ideas and cultures.
Economy and Trading- Makes coin by selling services and supplies to crusaders. Imports most necessary items, including food when tensions are high and the farmers have been pulled inside the walls. Has one of the most efficient merchant fleets in the world (including ships to transport crusaders from the mainland).
Military- One of the best equipped and professional armies in the world. Masters at defense and fight like their lives depend on it, because it usually does. Also one of the best quality navies in the world. The city itself is strongly fortified and has three rings of walls.
Allies and Rivals- Get along reasonably well with Tohongo. Nominal allies with all the humanoid kingdoms that send crusaders. The Dominion of Angar is their hated, eternal enemy. Nominal rivals with all goblinoid kingdoms. Crusading armies are not allowed inside the walls, although commanders generally receive formal invitations and a reasonable number of small groups can be rotated through at any one time.