Scorched Wilds are home to only two divine beings: Luck and Death. Every person that travels through or heaven forbid lives in this barren wasteland give offerings to the two in the hopes they can see the next sunrise. Even Pirate King Lorenzo Rossi, the favorite child of Luck, dared never to set foot into the Scorch unless necessary.
The Scorched Wilds is a desert located on the continent of Samolyra. It is the largest desert in all of Iosis and encompasses the northern half of Samolyra excluding the fertile regions of Riverrock Heights and The Farthest Expanse. Frequent sandstorms and heatwaves create natural barriers between the three major powers in the area, making land invasions nearly impossible. Yearly monsoons both create a welcome relief from the normal oppressive heat, but also brings flash flooding in lower areas that are just as if not even more deadly.
The Scorched Wilds is mainly made up of dry valleys, stone plateaus, sand seas, dry lakes, and salt flats all of which are shaped by the hot winds and sparse rainfall. The valleys found in this desolate region are some of the lowest in all the world, including the three lowest points of elevation found anywhere, Whispering Basin, White Barrens, and Infernal Wastes. Ironically, the lowest points of elevation, are bracketed by some of the highest peaks found in the Riverrock Heights. The majority of the northernmost, easternmost, and westernmost regions of the Scorched Wilds are made up of coastal desert with dunes of sand that can reach over 500 ft high. The few areas of fertile land in these areas are occupied by Sanctuary, home of The South Sea Corsairs and the tied island of Rorich Cay. In the very center of the Scorched Wilds are the Riverrock Heights mountains, home to the country of Granton. These mountains are a reprieve from the hyperarid lands that surround them. These mountains are one of the few areas in the Scorched Wilds that have yearly snowfall and regular rain. However, reaching the Riverrock Heights by any means other than following the river from the ocean is nearly impossible due to the three deep valleys found at the base of the mountain. The temperature in these valleys can easily reach 125 degrees during the day and -20 degrees at night making any trek through the area at any time hazardous. The southern part of the Scorched Wilds is made up of a series of steppes divided by two smaller mountain ranges. South of the Scorched Wilds are the Carlelan Savannah, and the Maninora Peaks that make up the country of Courson.
Fauna & Flora
Flora and fauna of the Scorched Wilds are highly diverse and hearty due to the vast geographical characteristics of the area. For most of the year, the vast majority of the northern, eastern, and western areas are home to just sand, wind, and brutal heat. Only during monsoon season does this change, with the bland beige of dunes broken by brightly colored flowering plants that quickly put down shallow roots and produce seeds in a matter of days. These seeds will lay dormant in the dry soil until they encounter water, sometimes waiting years for the rain to reach them. The coastal lands that border the ocean are the only exceptions with the areas not used for food production filled with acacia trees, date palms, shrubs, and grasses. Additionally, fauna such as fennec foxes, gazelles, crocodiles, wild dogs, bats, hares, sheep, sand cats, oryx, and dozens of species of waterfowl and insects, call this area home. The mountains of central Scorched Wilds are covered dense vegetation that can be seen from miles away. The majority is a single vast forest that both human and fauna call home. The floor of the forest is made up of moss, ferns, shrubs, and other shade tolerant plants. The occasional small tree will start growing if there's a gap in the canopy. The canopy is made up of Caesalpiniaceae and Okoumé trees that are home to gorillas, leopards, bonobos, antelope, buffalo, crocodiles, river hogs, warthogs, dozens of snakes, lizards, birds, bats, frogs, rodents and hundreds of insects. The steppe grasslands and mountains of south Scorched Lands are primarily covered in grasses and shrubs with the occasional acacia tree. Only herbivores that can survive on grasses or thorny plants such as camels, antelope, goats, horses, and onager can call this area home. Predators such as hyena, pale foxes, and wild dogs harass their prey at all hours of the day while carrion birds and insects feast on the carcasses left behind.
Riverrock Heights provides the majority of the wood in the region, as do the coastal areas. Hunting and fishing in all but the dune-covered areas provide meat, hides, organs used for fertilization, bait, or water jugs, tendons used in sewing, and bones, claws, antlers, and teeth used in decoration. Sand is used in the creation of glass, brick, and cement and grasses can be used in weavings.
Death's Domain, The Scorch
Good Article! The opening is great and you manage to paint a great picture of a hostile, dangerous land. There are one or two things to note: You tend to begin your paragraphs with "The" which is a bit repetitive to read. Also this line "Camels, monitor lizards, antelope, pale fox, goats, horses, onager, hyena, and dozens of birds, lizards, and insects." just stands there. Combining them with the rest of the paragraph like you did in the parts above would make it better. All in all its a really neat piece of work.
Thank you! I didn't even notice how many times I used 'The'. I also edited the last fauna paragraph. Hopefully, it reads a lot better now.
Very thorough description of the region! I like how you listed flora and fauna, weather, climate, and basically everything else someone could wonder about a region's makeup. I was confused about why Death and Luck were mentioned at first only to never be mentioned again, but I realized that it's not very important. Overall, very clear and detailed. Good job!
I would say, the article for sure has a lot of wonderful artwork added thanks to all the covers you use for the articles! I would say for sure that it sounds as inhospitable as it could get, all be it for the central mountain bit. Which, raises a bit of a question: how does it gain rainfall and snow? Is it because of the height? Also, since the country is isolated from the world through mountains, does it get any outside trade as well? Either way, this is surely one of the more impressive terms of work, keep it up and hopefully you'll win something! Hopefully my critique worked!
It is a strength of the article that I find myself wanting to know more about aspects of it and feeling like they need to be there. Whenever I really want to read more, that's usually a good sign! There's a little bit of a contradiction between the opening quote ("Death by desert, 100%!") and how it is later laid out. You describe it as a vibrant place with lots of life, monsoon rains and dense vegetation. I'm not opposed to this sort of dichotomy and you mention the rain being the source but the contrast is a bit stark. :) In general: it might be worth watching your commas. A quick search (admittedly including the comments and all) showed 116 commas. Just a random aside: you mention degrees but not what kind. I assume not celsius but it could help to be specific? :) There's some nitpick that you could find when you do a polish pass (does "vast geographical characteristics of the area" mean, "because its really big" for example?) As I said, there are places I would love to know more about. The whispering basin and the infernal wastes sound like really interesting places and I wish they were included in some way into the article. Welcome back and glad to see you join Summer Camp with us! :D
Creator of Araea, Megacorpolis, and many others.
I'm currently working on a map of the continent that will hopefully answer questions involving the size of the area as well as why it's primarily an inhospitable region of the world. I'll also give this a thorough look over either once I've completed all of the prompts or summer camp is over and get rid of any excess commas and make my descriptions clearer.