The Legend Reborn
State of the Nations
The game begins in 2525, the year of the Watchful Guardian. It has been more than a thousand years since the dark times of the Avatar Crisis, and the Darkwar that followed. Evil has remained quiescent for the passing of an age, but lately there have been whispers of a coming darkness that will challenge the Overpower of Toril himself.
Silverymoon is the capital of Silvermar, a country formed out of the Confederation of the Silver Marshes, bordered by Netheril in the east, the Glimmerwood in the north, Starmounts to the south, and Evermoors to the west. It has become a great centre of trade as a result of the near-destruction of Waterdeep in 2013 by the ravening hoards of King Steel-eyes’ Troll army. The trade roads shifted, bringing people and goods to the shining city, and even once Waterdeep gained ascendency more than a century later, the city’s influence grew to encompass the countryside and later the totality of the Marshes.
Today, Silverymoon is considered one of the greatest cities in all of Faerun, matching Suzail in its power and influence. It is a place of gathering and friendship, ruled by the noble warrior Valien Truehand, servant of Torm and High Lord of Silvermar. At his side and standing as his equal is the High Lady Miriam Elenithil, daughter of Princess Aryael of Cormanthyr and the former Duke Jacen Brightheart of Silvermar. By their sides are the High Mage Ryvalla Moonsong and her husband Jared Vallerion, Lord General of the Silver Army.
Faerun has changed greatly since the time of the Darkwar in 1375, the Year of Encroaching Darkness. The city of Shade was transformed into the City of Light, Leyetha, through the combined efforts of the Archmage Felix Aldermann and his wife, the goddess Lara before the defeat of the Dark One. This occurred shortly before the final battle between the Five Chosen and the other-worldly Dark One who came to conquer Toril. With his death, the Dark armies fell, and peace reigned throughout the land for centuries to come.
The redemption of Leyetha and the remaining survivors of the Netheril Empire became the seeds from which the great realm of magic was restored, reclaiming the land from the harsh grasp of the Anauroch Desert. The transformation and restoration of Netheril took hundreds of years, but with the assistance of the elves and other people in Faerun, the Empire rose again. Today, it holds ascendency over all magic in Faerun, likely maintaining its arcane superiourity over the entire world. Despite its magical development, the nation tends to be a bit rough around the edges, having a large population of outlaws and criminals, in addition to the wide variety of creatures in unsettled areas. For this reason, most of the members of “high society” reside in the sky-cities, while the ground-dwellers are forced to deal with the dangers on a regular basis. Netheril is also the largest centre for slavery in Faerun, despite the fact that it is illegal and punishable by death.
Netheril is ruled by a council of Great Mages selected from the ranks of the greatest Netherese mages. They work together with the secular governments of the sky-cities and the cities below. Other countries have made treaties with the new nation, including Cormyr and Silvermar, hoping to benefit from the association and perhaps prevent another world-wide disaster such as that of Karsus’ Folly. Netheril is also influential in trade, having significant sources of gold and gems from the former desert of Anauroch as well as a vast supply of magical items produced by the many magical craftsmen of the land.
Cormyr, also known as the Forest Country and the Land of the Purple Dragon, is an independent nation in Interior Faerûn. It is one of the most prosperous countries in the world. The country has retained its great influence through the ages, and today remains one of the most powerful nations on Toril. The succession of the first King Obeskyr’s descendents has continued for more than 2000 years, and does not seem destined to end any time soon.
The lands of Cormyr stretch from the Stormhorns to the west to the Dragon Reach in the east. It controls the coast along the north side of the Dragonmere, and extends its influence into the Dalelands who are currently under the protection of the Cormyrean army. The Obeskyr family has remained in power since the year 26 DR, when the country was founded. The nobility of Cormyr is composed of the most wealthy and influential households. There is an annual ceremony at the beginning of the summer where each noble house comes to Suzail to meet and see the monarch and discuss their achievements over the previous year, before retiring to their summer residences. Nobles swear allegiance to the crown on the sword Symylazarr. They are also responsible for providing the king of Cormyr a certain number of troops, in lieu of their military service, under Cormyrian law.
There have been many changes in the country throughout the years, beginning with the invasion of dragons in 389 DR, which was halted by the sacrifice of the Lady Amarantha Saerelis, who sued for peace even as she was struck down by those she protected. Thauglor, the Purple Dragon, was so impressed by her resolve, that he made peace with the fledgling country and became the symbol for justice and truth through the ages.
Cormyr survived many terrible things, including the orc invasion of 423 DR, the War of the Lost King in 1252, the assassination of the majority of the royal family in 1375, and the goblin wars of 1422. Its borders have shifted based on such events, as well as world-shaking events like the Time of Troubles, but none so significant as that of 1879 with the invasion of Chief Mordath of the Bloodfist orc clan. The resulting war left Sembia and the Dalelands devastated, and Cormyr with the added responsibility of their renewal and protection. While the Dalelands asserted their independence, agreeing to become a protectorate of Cormyr with no governmental interference, Sembia turned itself over to Cormyrean rule, stating that the loss of their army left them too vulnerable to be anything but dependent on the more powerful country. Today, the Sembian culture lives on in eastern Cormyr, even as the land itself is ruled from Suzail.
Waterdeep, also known as the City of Splendors or the Crown of the North, was once the most important and influential city in the North and perhaps in all Faerûn. The Bloodfang Invasion of 2013 was responsible for its fall from grace, resulting in the destruction of more than two thirds of the city. It took over a century to recover from its near destruction at the hands of the Trolls, forcing trade in the West to undergo a significant change. In order to adapt, Baldur’s Gate, Neverwinter, and Silverymoon picked up responsibility for the diverted trade, which increased the size and influence of all three cities. Once Waterdeep recovered, it was forced to develop its manufacturing capacity in order to attract the guilds back into the city.
Today, Waterdeep is the largest city in the world having an area of 467 square miles, and two sets of walls surrounding the inner and outer sections of the city. It is a city-state whose authority extends a hundred miles from its walls where several million people make their home. Being a coastal trade city, it has its own navy, along with a standing army residing in the military section of the city. A third of the population belongs to the army or the Spellguard. Many merchants have their own guards, while others hire from the Adventurers’ Guild for particularly large caravans.
The city has become the commercial crossroads of the northern Realms and the coastal trade of the western seas. It remains the hub of manufacturing and trade from the mineral-rich lands to the north, the merchant kingdoms of Amn and Calimshan to the south, the kingdoms of the Inner Sea, Silvermar and Netheril to the east, and the sea kingdoms and traders to the west.