Great Forest

A Brief History

  The remanats of an bygone age that was as old as the Western Lands itself. The Great Forest was one of the only portion of forest remain after the Beastmen invasion and the inferno that set the whole west on fire. It is unclear how the much of the forest actually survives the inferno, but with time it seed travel where ever the winds took them and regrew what was destroyed. It grew to great lengths as well as it divide the west into south and north creating natural borders between the two. It also became harsh wilderness to travel through as it does not take too kindly to those who do not respect it and tread upon hoping to take it its riches. As it has been shrouded in myth and mystery by those who live outside of it. There are even ruins from the old Elven Empire that still remain, the most intact ruins in all the west in fact, hiding who knows what inside of them.   But it far from being just occupied by just plants and animals. Humans who have been living in it since ancient times still live there and are the last of those who follows the old ways of man. Now they simple known as the Forest Tribes of Ve’tal. Divided into many tribes they live of the land like there ancestors in peace and harmony. Along with the druids that follow the old gods in their ancient groves. But they are not the only one who remain in it, the Dryads the ancient care taker of the forest survived the invasion and have been tending to it needs. Protecting it from any harm that might fall upon from any threat, but remain hidden from all as they are hunted by many and only show themselves to all but a few. But the most dangerous of all its inhabitants are the Beastmen that were forced to flee into it are after Humans became the dominant race in the west after their victory in the Beast War. It is ironic really as they sought to destroy the forests of they west and now it is their only safe haven in the world. But now all they do is fight one another over territory and resources, but will often tread to different areas if they have to survive.   The forest has often rarely seen any actual conflict involving any nations outside of the forest and the tribes often isolate themselves from that outside world considering them corrupted for abandoning the old ways. For centuries the nations of the west have considered an invasion of the forest near impossible due to the terrain and hostile environment. This and the fact that any attempt ever done has failed, this can be seen in the Forest War and the Warlock War. As the natives of the region use the environment against the would be invaders and the lack of any infrastructure or supply lines make it impossible to conduct a campaign and keep an army functioning properly without exhausting resources. Making it a natural defense between the north and south of the Western Lands and causing them to become isolated from one another or ever seeing war from one another. But it has been known to harbor bandits, brigands, and smuggler that are either brave or stupid to conduct their illegal activities.    
Great Forest

Geography

Regional Areas

  Night Reach: An area of the forest were the trees branches are so thick and entangled to one another that it is also hard for any light to come through them and leaves the area to an almost constant state of darkness for most of the year. More light comes in during the winter, but It often covered up with tarps by Akali tribe that make their home in the area since they have grown accustomed to the darkness and prefer to keep it that way. Even if they weren't covered up, most of the leaves don't even make it to the ground since large vines have made their way through trees and enter woven with them creating a sheet to trap them.   Wild Thicket: A very old and harsh area of forest where the vegetation is so dense that traveling through it is often difficult to travel through, let alone the plant life that is said to come to life and attack anyone who it deems an intruder. This is probably due to the fact that is a stronghold for Dryads. Which make sure that no one can take their plants or capture them  
Swamp of the Black Wolf cover
Black Wolf Swamp : A dense swamp is said to be the result of the decaying carcass of the The Beast after his failed attempt to kill Nera the moon goddess. The place is full of twisted plant life that is poisonous and the large fish in the area tend to eat anything they can catch. Surprising there is a tribe that lives in the swamp called the Urgan who found ways to survive this hazardous environment and are able to protect their lands easily by using the swamp against any intruders.   The Glade: The largest open space in the forest that is not claimed by any group or race. It is considered both sacred and neutral by all who live in the forest. Often though both religious and tradition means that makes this place a place of peace and life. It is often here when parties wish to meet and negotiate with one another and avoid any bloodshed they often come here knowing that no violence would be committed as long as they remain in the Glade. To break such a rule would be consider an act of sacrilege and condemn those with shame or death in some cases.   Abari Hills: A series of hills that are said be a Spirit Crossing to the spirit world. It is the home of the Verux tribe who are as mysterious and isolated as they hills themselves. Often covered with mist and an eyry silence that is often found about the place. You can't even find any animals around them either, making it all the more disturbing. It is said that those who are not welcomed here either disappear or go mad for some reason. Which is why people often stay clear of if they have to.   Beastwood: As the name suggest, the area is full of Beastmen tribes that make the region their home. Often fighting each other over resources and land when time become hard for them. They will often kill Humans on sight as they are considered sworn enemies for the conflicts they had in the past. Since they are forced to stay in this area they are adapted to their environment surprisingly well due to the fact that many of them are migratory in nature. Building their own civilizations by learning what ever knowledge Humans have learned when ever they can to survive better.   Forgotten Forest: A region that is considered impossible to travel through and knowledge about it is next to nothing. According to legend the Fae fled here and fortified it to keep everyone out. Those stupid enough to wander in to it often are never seen again, go mad or lose their memories of what they encountered in there. Making a one the few places charted in the world.  
Stone Fang Ridge: A number of rock hills that border northern region of the forest. This area is full of minerals and stone that can be excavated. The reason why it hasn’t been done yet is due to the fact that anyone who as ever done so have been been attacked by the tribes or Beastmen. The reason why as it is considered an act of aggression by them and are willing to spill blood to drive out the intruders. The cost to protect the mining operations have been consider too high by many and have been abandoned ever since.   Grove's Heart: Consider one of the oldest druid groves in the world and might as well be the last one as well. The druids that live here often made their home and have let nature flourish here as they worship their ancient gods. The only way to go to such a place is to either be given permission or prove yourself worthy through trials to see if you are not a threat to the grove. is said that old magic exist here and that the animals are very docile when they are here. Making it a very safe place to live in if your lucky as food is plentiful and weather often stays the same. Outer Woods: Often referred to the outer areas of the forest, they are as normal as any forest can get by Human standards. Here many of the smaller Forest Tribes of Ve’tal live here as they are safer for them then taking their chances at survival rather then trying to constantly fight for survival. A settlements can be found bordering the wooded areas as well to harvest resources. At times the tribes and the settlements are at odds with one another and often try to stay out of each others way. Inner Woods: The deepest reaches of the forest are consider dangerous as they are declared pure wilderness without any sign of civilization to aid anyone traveling through at their own risk. The wildlife will often attack anyone traveling through it and the terrain can cause some to become lost and never find their way out. Some of the large Forest Tribes of Ve’tal live here as they are able to endure it. There are also many elven ruins that can found here as well untouched by men for centuries.  

Places of Interest

 
Dra Toren cover
Dra Toren: An ancient Elven fortress that was said to be that largest of its kind. Now it is nothing more then a crumbling ruin of what it once was. With very few people knowing where it actually is due to its location being lost to time.   Hebonar: Another settlement that lives near the forest, but are more open to trade with the forest tribes and farming. It’s an interesting place to visit as many different ethnic groups have merged with the way of life to create a diverse culture with many different customs.   Shrine of Remembrance: Tribes consider in sacred land for it is where all come to pay respect to their ancestors. The reason why their is only one shrine for all the tribes is that their are no sides after death and all become one tribe to where hatred and division are gone. It is also a place to ask for advice or aid from their ancestors when they need it.   Whitewood: Once a productive logging village, it is nothing more then a pile burnt wood since the War of the Raptors. With it said the Spirits of the dead haunt it in search of those who killed them.   Stenburg: A town that has a strong hunting and military tradition in its roots. The hunters of the village are often bold and journey deeper into the forest unlike most others. It is the only town in the area that has actual walls and a militia to defend themselves from harm. Since the war end they been more and more serious about survival as resources are becoming scare.  
Fort Henson: Built near the ruins of Whitewood was built to secure the region since without the town anyone come and go as they pleased since an imperial garrison was not stationed there. The fort is general a small setup that hold about a few hundred men. But those stationed their hate it due to the fear of being so close to the forest ad dangers it holds.   Mound of Ancients: A sacred places for druidic knowledge harbored over the generations. It is a place where all those who wish to become Druids most go here to receive this knowledge to understand the world and it meanings. It is unclear how this knowledge is received as the Druids keep it a secrets to all outsiders.   Tes’nuk: A permanent tribal settlement built inside the ruin of an old Elven fortress that is controlled by the Hetanka tribe. It is heavily fortified and full of traps to keep people and animals out. It best not even try to get in their traps are everywhere and Hetanka ingenuity should not be take lightly.   Mother Tree: It is said that it is the oldest tree in the forest and is consider sacred to the Dryads. With it being said that the tree gave birth to the first of their kind and that it has great power hidden within from old gods.   Janewa: The ruins of an Elven city that are mostly intact that has managed to remain standing for many millennia since the fall of the Elven Empire. Many have sought to find this city in hopes of finding knowledge or treasure that the Elves abandoned. But it is deep in the forest and those who often seek it out often never return as many untold dangers can be found along the way.   Datra’ona: A place of trade and learning among the tribes and Druids of the forest. This settlement belongs to all and everyone has a claim here. They will even allow outsiders to enter if they are considered trust worthy. This places was created to promote peace and understanding to bring forth better cooperation and prosperity both tribes and possible those outside of the forest in the hopes of one day creating proper diplomatic understanding between each others.   Fort High Tower: Though it is nothing more a pile of rubble since the War of the Raptors, Fort High Tower remains as an outstanding achievement of craftsmanship and ingenuity by the Ardanian people that stop defiant against all odds and held their ground instead of giving in.

Fauna & Flora

The forest is as old and ancient as the world itself as wildlife both familiar and foreign can be found depending on which region of the forest you are in. Many of which can be dangerous if one is not too careful. Their is also undocumented species that have yet to be recorded due many of those seek them are never seen again. But their also tales of supernatural creatures and giant animals that are said be living there even though they just told in stories. But there might be some truth to these tales.

Natural Resources

It is rich in game and in plantlife where ever you go. But the most plentiful resources are fur and timber that can be found anywhere. Along with a few s pieces of plants that can be used in medicine.

Maps

  • Great Forest
Alternative Name(s)
The Woodlands
Type
Forest
Location under
Related Ethnicities
Characters in Location
Inhabiting Species
Related Myths

Life as a Tribesmen

 
Henda mu'uo tesa unba junda. Translation: Get off our land before we feed you to the wolves! - An iritated tribesmen
Its not easy being a member of the forest tribes as they have to worry about many things. Food, landand possible attacks being a day to day problem to some more then others. The forest is all they have and their way of life is threatened constantly by the outside world slowly encrouching on their lands as they desire more resources of the forest. Making the tribes isolate themselves from the world and alway suspisous of outsiders.  

Life as a Dryad

Oh my what a healthy young man you are, why don't I get a better look at you if you come and bath with me. - A seductive Dryad
Dyads are considered having fewer options then most in the forest as their numbers a slowly dying out as they have little land can protect these days. They have become secertive and cautious when dealing with others and very few decided to live amongst other groups other then their own kind. Even going to lengths of capturing men they find and using them as breeding slaves to increase their numbers. Which many of them don't complain about considering the circumstances.  

Life as a Beastmen

Raaaaaaggghhh - A charging Minotaur
Life is not easy when everyone hates you, that can been seen with most Beastmen. War and survival are thesamething things for them since they are constantly in a contanstant state of conflict with one another that has no end in sight as their numbers remain the same due to their biology. To leave their lands means certain death as many hate them and wish to see them dead.    

Life as a Druid

Open your eyes and see the world for what it really is. - Wise Druid before transfroming into crow
Druids have lived in the forest for a long time now and thier way of is often threatened. Though most Druids often are peaceful and respectful of others, they are often shunded and ostrasized by those outside of the forest considering them heathens and followers of dark gods. Along with using dark magic to carry out their will. But they are simply guides and seekers of knowledge. Their Wild Magic is nothing more then an extension of themselves to become more attached to nature. Along with searching for enlightenment and understanding of the world and to help thoses who seek it. Many often stay in their groves and only welcome those who are like minded like them.  

An land of the old ways

  The faiths and teachings of the current age are none existent in this places as old faiths and cultures have thrived here for many millennia and untouched by the rest of the Western Lands. Making this place completely foreign to those who are foreign to it.  

The Remnants of a Lost Age

  The ruins you can find in the forest dates back all the way to the Elven Empire and all that remains of the golden age as much of its history has been lost to time and the forest have taken claim to most of it. Even some the tribes and Druids date back to that time and carry on their way of life like they did for thousands of years.

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