The Empire of Plen
The Empire of Plen is composed of most of the northern continent (generally anywhere north of the Delta Territories) and the dark land jungles of the middle continent. The Delta Territories have traditionally been a contested area, and were once under rulership of the Plennish Empire. It currently belongs to the Kingdom of Ern, however.
The current government of Plen is a Empire-Republic. A senate, composed of 100 active senators representing various regions throughout the northern continent, meet twice a month to decide on affairs of the government. The Emporer, currently Emporer Manstem, is given duties by the senate regarding national defense, international conflicts and negotiations, and building support for senatorial policies at home. The Emporer has largely been a figure head for the past 60 years (since the Battle of Plenburg) and only acts on the Senate’s whim. Senators generally state that their interests are devoted soley to the people of Plen, but it is largely believed that most senators are influenced by large international corporations, who use back door deals and sometimes flat out bribery to alter the course of government policy.
Originally a nomadic hunter-gatherer society, Plennish culture values the “Hunter” archetype above all else. The Hunter is the provider, the strong man, the masculine identity that is the ideal for all Plennish people. Several holidays are based around the different hunting cycles of the year, based on the lunar calender. The full moon of October is known as the Hunter’s Moon and is largest and most widely celebrated holiday in the Plennish calendar.
In this industerialized age, there is a divide in cultural values. The worker is viewed as the new hunter, going to the factories and earning a salary to provide for their family. But the monotony of unskilled factory work is at odds to the traditional role of the hunter, who is viewed as strong and clever. The captains of industry, owners and stockholders of the major corporations are also viewed, at times, as the new true hunters of Plennish society. Others still find that those that work against the current industerialization are the true hunters of Plennish society. These are the sky pirates, who raid corporate ships for the valuables carried on them, either for their own personal gain or sometimes for a larger underprivilaged group they represent. Celebration of sky pirates is done only through underground media, such as comic books and unofficial pamphlets. The major corporations, who own the larger newspapers and other media forms, accuse the pirates of being hardened criminals (which is often true), and enemies of society itself (which is debatable).
Plennish people were traditionally a nomadic people, hunting bisonbears across the plains south of the Northern Mountains. In the 3rd age, the bisonbears were almost hunted to extinction. This caused a radical change in Plennish culture and society. Mass starvation was rampant, but industry was on the rise. The invention of the steam engine, powered by coal mined in the northern mountains had a lasting and powerful impact on Plen historically. The advent of industerialization was viewed as a miracle, endowed by the divine intervention to save the Plen Nation. Factories sprang up in all the major populations, most prominitely in Plenburg, which was originally a midsized fishing town. The change in industry is what spurned the change in its vernacular name to Empire City.