This area is the ancestral home of the Zin’Charu, and is considered the domain of the present kingdom of Antioch. It bears an alpine climate, and serves as the source for both major rivers of the Shadow region. It also lays claim to a small valley of a much more pleasant, temperate climate known as the Moonstone Vale.
The Darkwood region is named for the forest that once swept across its heart, before the Tsarven empire paved its way across that tree-studded expanse. Many creatures still lurk in the remaining fragments of the woods, preying upon those who stray too far from the main roads. The only true remnants of the original Darkwood forest now lie within those lands claimed by Shadow city, leaving this region deceptively named. The young kingdom of Tabor lies at the heart of the region itself, surrounded by farmland and forest that are rarely troubled, but the more outlying reaches fall prey to a number of unpleasant creatures, including yuan-ti, orcs and bandits. The very southern reaches include Azha, the only outpost of the Tsarven Empire that lies north of Talzashaar’s teeth, the vast mountain range cutting the Empire off from the realm of Shadow.
The Dagger region encompasses the only stretches of the Shadow realm never held by the Zin’Charu in antiquity. Instead, the entire northern half of this region, as well as the coasts as far as the present Shadow Desert, were the dominion of the Aesatri tribes. The kingdom of Torm still stands as testament to their strength in modern times, a bustling trade hub and the largest port of the realm. Northwest upon the fertile Yniam plains lies its prodigal kindred within the rebel dukedom of Tonovi, once part of the greater Torm kingdom. Its only other major settlement, Daggerdale, lies northeast as nothing more than haunted ruins, a shadow of the once vibrant village that offered welcome to all. The Dagger region is bordered along its northern stretch by the arctic highlands, where many beasts lay claim to homes deep in the mountain caves, as does the greatest dwarven citadel of their race, Barak Morndin (of which the more local Kinaro is a minor outpost). East lies the small Dagger Sea, which flows out into the Saakrune. West and south lie the Charu and the Barrier mountains, effectively cutting off most easy access to this region from elsewhere.
Offestry is a quiet hamlet northwest of the mainlands, settled within a small valley of the same name. Very little of importance happens here, but the townsfolk seem content enough for it to remain this way; the maddened wizard and the strange disappearances of Kilgore Keep in recent years seem to have served as excitement to last them at least a decade or so. Citizens busy themselves with careers crafting and gathering those items required for travel and selling them to passersby, on their way across the mountains to the southeast. Isolated as it is, the village is rarely threatened by danger and supports only a token number of guards, mostly half-trained peasants.
The region of Shadow encompasses a vast swathe of lands, including a desert and a merchant-run city of the same name. The desert is said to have been the site of the ShadowGate, for which the entire region is named, and the focal point of the Godswar of 0SG. While the powers of Shadow claim legal rulership over this broad region of land, not all of the denizens living within them entirely agree. The rough area considered to be the Shadow region consists of the desert as far as the eastern coast, and the remaining Darkwood forest southeast of the city, often hotly contested with the dukedom of Tharis. It spans northwest to include the echoes mountain range and the meadowlands, and north to the trade crossroads leading to the Charu mountains.
The region of Tharis includes the city of the same name, and a somewhat limited region of land surrounding it, given its hotly contested borders by both Shadow and the Tsarven Empire. It is bordered to the south by Talzashaar’s Teeth, a high mountain range that becomes impossible to cross at certain times of the year and still usually avoided regardless. The dukedom of Tharis lays claim to a vast stretch of forest to the east known as Vandor’ivae, the forest of lights, to the local elves. Most humans simply refer to the southern and northern sections as Tharis and Darkwood forests respectively, the former of which is considered Tharisian territory.
The Tsarven Empire is a gathering of seven kingdoms and states (not including Tsarven itself) south of Talzashaar’s Teeth. It covers the entire continent south and south-east of the Shadow region, and can be roughly compared to the historic stretches of Arabia, Persia and Mongolia. It is actually the second, historically, to rule the region south of the great mountains. The first empire was composed of many Djinni kingdoms that inhabited the area from -7,800SG to -6,100SG. The current Empire arose primarily from the human slave stock of the first, having rebelled and overthrown their former masters following the end of the Age of Skyfire. These human slaves broke off into clans and tribes, many of which died out in the ensuing millennia, but the remainder gathered and began forming the present-day kingdoms and states.
Note: These locations, with the exception of Azha, are unreachable in-game, but many players use them as a part of their histories and homelands.