Great Empires

"They call it the 'civilised' south, but when those three empires finally duke it out, it'll be far more brutal than anything we could do to each other. All those riches and lands come at a price."
-overheard from a rancher in the Heartlands
  While most of the north of Arikanda is divided between nomadic tribes, individual kingdoms and city-states, the south and east of the continent is witnessing the emergence and solidification of its first empires; the aptly-named Great Empires. These empires all control vast reaches of territory, far more than any single kingdom or city-state, consist of huge populations, and have access to enormous amounts of resources at their disposal.  
  • The Avadian Sovereignty is the oldest of the Great Empires, and is an oligarchic republic which originated in the Beyan Archipelago and has now expanded to include colonies in southwestern Arikanda. It has also set up a number of ports on both sides of the Calinan Sea, and is a maritime and mercantile superpower.
  • The Kalriv Empire is the newest evolution of the militaristic, monotheistic Kalriv tribe, which has gradually expanded from its original home in the Venderan Desert to cover half of the Sapphire Coast. It is heavily socially stratified, with a tiered system ranging from a warrior elite and revered priesthood, to craftsmen and labourers, all the way down to slaves.
  • The Helikan League is the newest empire to emerge, and is unique in that it is not a single state but instead a confederation of city-states and kingdoms stretching across the southern Sapphire Coast and the southern-central region of Tanoron. In theory, it is an alliance of mutual defense and co-operation between equals. In practice, the city of Helik leads the League as a hegemon, with influence varying between the city-states.
At this time, 469 TE, the empires have existed in an uneasy equilibrium over the past several decades. While the Avadian Sovereignty has been able to avoid conflict due to its isolation on land and its sheer mastery at sea, the Helikan League and the Kalriv Empire have been butting heads over their borders in the Sapphire Coast and the eastern Heartlands for some time, and it is considered only a matter of time before these two empires break into outright war. What the Sovereignty will do when this happens is anybody's guess.

Cover image: by Vertixico


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