Not Sharayan Empire
To the EAST:
First there are the steppes. Almost none of the towns here have any permanent markers. The tribes vary in sizes from a few hundred to 200,000 people and are very racially and prime land territorial. They migrate with the life stock and so do the vast tent cities that come with them. These tribes fight over their lands, the richer ones going to the victors of the skirmishers. This is constant. Most are mounted. There are two stationary cities. Protected from attackers by “mudwalls” These places survive of taxation of trade and are nearly lawless. Although, their emissaries are often treated as judges by debating tribes. These cities have no names but stand in a linear line from the mouth of Gorh to the deserts beyond the steppes.
Trade trickles down from the deserts and the cities thrive of taxation and resale. On many occasions the steppe folk had gathered under one banner to take the Sharayan Empire but have never been able to take the high walls of even the meager cities of Lukas or Koln. Unfortunately for the Steppe Tribes they possess no knowledge of siege weapons or tactics.
Most tribes are human but there are halfling, half-orc, half-ogre, and dwarfish tribes.
To the North:
To the north sit the thick evergreen forest and the mountains of ice. Most Sharayans think the land inhospitable, but on many occasions the Imperial Hosts tried unsuccessfully to conqueror the frozen north. It abounds with a wealth of game, precious stone and minerals. For those that can take the nip frost on the warmest of days it is home. And so it is to the Frost and the Mountain Dwarfs, endless seas of human tribes and halfling Zarns (Principailities). Here the stout and the strong survive. The deals are as often handled with iron as with cunning and tall walls protect those crafty enough to hide behind them.
Several Lords rule this domain. The mighty dwarven Kingship of Fitshath is the largest and by far the strongest. It boasts a navy of nearly 800 longships and the stone and metal smiths make weapons and armor unparalleled even to Sharaya. Located at the north western border and adjacent to the Drozian Mountains and the river Soth. The rivver runs behind them and empties out into the Kotic ocean giving the longship access to the ocean and a castle of ships to guard their retreat if pressed by Sharayan Hosts.
Further in north and out to the east lay the halfling Zarns. They are ruled by the Kazen counsel and appoint Zarins to the seats of power of these two level cities. If the Sharayan Hosts thought that conquering the dwarfs would be easy the halfling Keeps are minuscule to the underground network of streets and defenses that lay beneath the seamingly weak fortifications. Even the dwarfs have never been able to dig up the “pests”.
Although all the denizens of the north are at odds and kept that way by the harrying Sharayans Hosts, diplomats and embargoes when involved in all out wars with their southern neighbor they often band together. Unlike the steppe forces to the east the North is pretty unpopulated. Here the largest tribe of humans is 25,000 but unlike the steppes only the children and the infirm do not know how to use a blade or cast something.
To the SOUTH:
To the south lay the swamps and the jungles. Like the north the population here is a lot smaller than Steppes to the east or the Sharayan Empire. Most of the south west, behind the South Mountains is swamp. Past that and to the south east are the jungles. As in the other places the humans are the majority but unlike other places they are not the only ones that share that status. Here the goblins are plentiful.
In the south there are 3 major forces. These are larger and often in disagreement and unlike their northern counterpart never band together. However, the terrain here is unconquerable by the might Hosts and the forays into the Sharayan Empire, until recently, have not been much trouble.
The Green Seer Goblins have erected a swamp city. Laying their “crow nest” holds on the treetops of the merciless jungle. The warrior cast ride large mosquito like bugs that cannot fly but can jump and crawl on trees and their witches and shamans have hexed most of the swamps that they occupy making the trip through goblin lands as dangerous as dental work on a dragon.
The next largest but not the most powerful group are the Fire Orcs. The name is a bit deceiving since it is a conglomerate of humans, orcs, ogres, half-ogres and half-orcs. When slaves run away they usually end up amongst this group. The Fire Orc tribes resemble the behavior of American Indians. Those that can pass the rituals of adulthood and can walk the deities flame gain insight into the power of the land. The most powerful of these are the orcs thus giving them the name. The Burning Eye is a gem imbued with the power of the flames and is granted as a “royal favor” to those the casters find worthy.
These orcs have built up wooden forts, impenetrable by fire. Three of these mighty things protect the denizens from the dangers of the jungles and the swamps.
Lastly, but by far not the least the Empire of Sisth. Here the citizens are casted ranging from full blooded Yuan Ti to lizard folk to mongrel men. Amongst these are doppelgangers. Given great privilege in exchange for intelligence from the Sharayan Empire and their Southern enemies. The Sisth occupy several giant pits in the swamp and their cities, although not at all wall are nearly impossible to find even if one has been there before. Their architecture rivals that of the ancient Elves and their skills and talents with magics and the old gods likewise.