The Vast: A Traveller's Guide.   Posted by DM BadCatMan.Group: 0
DM BadCatMan
 GM, 5 posts
Mon 17 Apr 2006
at 14:35
The Vast: A Traveller's Guide

“Come one, come all, here to the Vast. All the killing’s happening here, and the next handful of dooms to befall us all are a-hatching here – why wait for them to crawl to you? Come to the Vast, and join the slaughter.” Guldaeth Grimshield of Highbank Forest, old dwarven adventurer

The Vast is a renowned as a land of adventure and daring, where Orcs and Goblins horde in the mountains, where bandits lurk in the hills and roadside woodlands, where hidden crypts and ruins call for exploration, and where buried treasure is hidden in every hole and village. Intrigues abound between merchant lords and malevolent cults and thieves’ guilds. It is known as a land where adventurers can make a name for themselves, strike it rich and hit the big time.

“Treasure? Aye, lots of it in the Vast, lad; why didn’t ye ask earlier? Oh... I see; ye wanted to live a while, first.” Buirin Thalshond, merchant of Tantras

It is also known as a land of opportunity and prosperity, where people can make a new life themselves, without prejudice. It is a pioneering, frontier land, where civilization pushes against the savage Orcs in the mountains, and villains plot to seize control. In some parts, the Vast is civilized, prosperous and cultured. In others it is wild and lawless and gripped by tyrants.

The Vast might only be a small land, but it’s much bigger on the inside.

“[The cities of the Vast] …aren’t exactly stable and easy-going places to dwell, now, are they?” Elminster of Shadowdale

“Beware – there are beasts and secrets sleeping in those mountains that had best be awakened only by someone with a ready blade and fast spells, if they would live to boast of it...” Elminster of Shadowdale

Capital: None
Population: 1,308,960 (at 1372): Humans 78% (49.14% Damaran, 25.74% Chondathan, 2.34% Vaasan, 0.78% others), Dwarves 9%, Halflings 5%, Elves 3%, Gnomes 2%, Half-Elves 1%, Half-Orcs 1%
Governments: City-states and feudal holdings; most cities are ruled by councils of merchants and landowners
Human Languages: Damaran (Dethek)
Human Religions: Chauntea, Eldath, Malar, Mystra, Oghma, Tempus, Torm, Tymora, Waukeen
Dwarf Religions: Moradin, Clangeddin Silverbeard
Imports: Glass, luxury goods, salt
Exports: Copper, grain, iron, livestock, nickel, parchment, silver, textiles
Alignment: LN, N, NG

Folk Of The Vast


The human people of the Vast are a diverse and hardy lot, being a mixture of successive waves of colonization from the south and west - from the refugees of the fall of Jhaamdath in ancient times to the settlements of Impilturan lesser nobility several centuries ago to the recent migrations of people displaced by the Tuigan Horde. Mostly, they share the same ancestors as the Cormyreans, the Sembians and the Dalesfolk, so the natives of the Vast view these people as kin. They feel a stronger relationship with them than their strange and exotic neighbours to the East, and they are often allied in trade and war (such as during the Tuigan invasion, when the Vast cities contributed troops or supplies to King Azoun IV war effort). They have less to do the Moonsea territories, particular the nearby Mulmaster, and regard these lands as the home of cheats and spies, bandits and thugs. They also dislike the cities of the Dragon Coast, for many of the pirates that raid the Vast and harass their shipping hail from there.

These are the views of the city dwellers of the Vast. The rural population shares these opinions, but extends their reservations to cover the flashy and potentially dangerous adventurers, as well as the cities of the Vast. They see the cities as dangerous, or shady, or both; Tantras dominated by religion, Calaunt by thieves, Ravens Bluff by religion and thieves, and Procampur with ancient status. They want no truck with it, and are just happy to get their crops with a minimum of hassle. Thus they’ll usually keep to themselves. These folk have pioneering spirit, and see themselves as one with the land. Due to the dangers of orcs and goblins, they will always go armed when in the wilderness, but usually with simple weapons like slings, knives and staves.

On the whole, Vast folk are independent, forming into many separate city-states and townships with local rulerships. Their loyalties lie with their local communities, and not very far beyond that. Apart from the more conservative country folk, the people of the Vast are optimistic and upbeat, with a spirit for adventure and exploration. They are quite accepting and open-minded.

Regions: The Vast, Martyr’s Progeny, Ward Of The Triad (Torm)


The Dwarves have lived in the Vast for millennia, but always they struggled against the Orcs of Vastar. Once, they overthrew the Orcs and established Roldilar, the Realm of Glimmering Swords, but this lasted barely forty years before falling to the Orcs again. The Dwarves survived the frequent Orcish attacks over the millennia by allying with Elves and Humans, and now they often live with or nearby the Humans in their cities and villages. Others live in small communities in the mountains, still battling with the Orcs.

One great city of Dwarves still clings on to survival – Earthfast, a grim, decaying city deep underground in the Earthfast Mountains. They suffered frequent assaults from Orcs and Goblinoids, and many women and children died, leaving many ruined families. But still the Earthfast Dwarves sent troops to aid Azoun IV against the Tuigan Horde, although their Ironlord Torg mac Cei died in the battle. Recently Earthfast has begun to improve, having fought off the Orcs with the aid of Alusair Obarskyr. As the Dwarves have been fighting so long, every forebear is considered a hero, thus each is named after their father, with the appellation “mac” meaning “son of”. Their names are rather different from typical Dwarven, with names like Torg mac Cei, Lleu mac Gwydython, Pryderi mac Immath, Pryderi mac Dylan or Tuir mac Helban.

Regions: The Galena Mountains, Underdark (Earthroot)


Millenia ago, Moon Elves and Wood Elves once held the forests that dominated the southern shores of the Vast, until the Orcs and Goblinoids shattered their control. The Orcs then went on to cut down the forests in their invasion of Cormanthyr, thereby reducing the Vast Elves’ lands. They held on to the Grey Forest though, and aided the dwarves and humans against the Orcs, and contributed to the downfall of Vastar.

But centuries ago, a Hobgoblin attack from the Earthspur drove out the Moon Elves, leaving only the Wood Elves, who went on to ally with Impiltur against the Hobgoblins. The Wood Elves still live in the Grey Forest, and still contend with the Hobgoblins.

On the other side of the Vast, the city of Ylraphon was once an Elven community, part of Cormanthyr, until it was sabotaged by Drow and conquered by Orcs. Humans went on to settle in the ruins, though a few Elves have returned.


Gnomes have only a minor presence in the Vast, except for the small village of High Haspur located high in the alpine reaches of the Earthfast mountains. The Morninglight clan rules here, and they maintain good relations with humans and dwarves, frequently acting as mediators between the two races. This village is well-defended against Orc and Goblinoid attacks with many traps and gadgets.


The Earthfast mountains are home to a number of Orc tribes, which they harass the Dwarven kingdom of Earthfast. Orc raids on the lowlands are rare, but they are often and troublesome enough to keep the human populations concentrated along the coasts. It is quite likely that many unexplored caves and forgotten corners are infested with them.

The Orcs once ruled the Vast, millennia ago, when it was known as Vastar. They launched repeated raids and invasions on the Elves of Cormanthor across the Dragon Reach, and even held Myth Drannor for a while. The Orcs were beaten back and destroyed several times, but each time they would soon rise up again, never down for long. Currently, the Orcs are relatively dormant and squabbling, but given how many times Vastar rose again, it can only be a matter of time before the next great Orc chief tries to unite the tribes into a new horde.


The Earthfast mountains are also inhabited by Goblins, Hobgoblins and Bugbears. Although they have never had the dominance of the Orcs, they remain just as troublesome. The Hobgoblins in particular have unified into hordes on a number of occasions. They also occupy the Grey Forest, where they threaten the Wood Elves and human settlements of the southern Vast.

Regions: The Earthfast Mountains

Adventurers Of The Vast

Adventurers of the Vast are enthusiastic and daring, with a can-do attitude and bravery to the point of foolishness. They have a spirit for adventure and heroic exploration, and a strong drive to succeed, prove their worth and forge a legend.

They are optimistic and upbeat, unfazed by cynical stories of poor, bad-luck adventurers coming to an early and miserable end. With treasure and fame to be found literally everywhere, no adventurer can ever be down on his luck for long. Even in defeat, they are quick to plan their next adventure and scheme to reclaim lost status and wealth, and they retain their good spirits in the face of disaster. It has been said that if these adventurers did not invent graveyard humor, they certainly perfected it.

Adventurers are usually welcome in the Vast. The cities of Ravens Bluff and Tantras are havens to adventurers of all kinds, while Calaunt favours the darker variety, and Procampur deals with them reluctantly and at arm’s length. As many villains can be found in the Vast as in the nearby Moonsea, but here it seems that they can be defeated and it is the good folk – the adventurers, the merchants and the civilians – who triumph more often than not. It is the adventurers that keep the Vast from becoming another Moonsea, and for that they are welcomed. That, and the stories they tell and the gold and magic they put back into the economy. But when that gold and magic comes out of some dark and forgotten hole, adventurers are less welcome when something else follows them out.

But on the whole, the people and adventurers of the Vast are an open and accepting people. Growing up in a conglomeration of mixed cultures and peoples, they are quite used to foreigners that do things differently. No man’s past is held against him in the Vast, unless he takes no steps to improve his condition. The Vast offers many a chance for a new start and a new life. Many take this as an opportunity to reform, others to seize power.

Many things draw adventurers to the Vast, or tempt its inhabitants to the adventurer’s life. Intrigues between rival factions or cities abound, from feuding thieves’ guilds and merchant lords to the machinations of groups such as the Zhents or the Cult of the Dragon. Tales of buried treasure are everywhere, as though every rock and tree was the site of a hoard of gold, gems and magic. The ruins of dwarven and elven communities hint at forgotten wealth and lost knowledge, while Orcs, Goblinoids and worse monsters in the mountains and forests make good fodder for an adventurer’s blade or spells. Get-rich-quick tales of beggars striking it rich and becoming nobles prompt many to take up the adventurer’s life.

With so much treasure and wealth to be found (or so it is claimed in the taverns), adventurers prefer to show off their wealth and success, with jewelry and flashy clothing and extravagant actions that make their legends grow. But they vary as much as their cities and towns and their respective professions do.

Warriors of the Vast tend to be members of local mercenary companies, or they have come from the ranks of the city guards and soldiers, or they are simple self-taught wannabe adventurers. Although they differ from city to city and town to town, they tend to dress in a style that epitomizes the adventuring warrior, typical anywhere in the Realms, with sturdy and functional armour, well-used weaponry, a heavy cape or cloak, simple utilitarian clothing, and the occasional piece of jewelry or other adornment, to indicate how successful they have been at the adventurer’s life.

Mages of the Vast are usually taught in schools in the big cities, or as apprentices to senior mages in their towers out in the countryside. But with so much magical treasure floating around, and the Vast folk’s spirit of adventure, there are a number of self-taught hedge-wizards practicing the adventurer’s trade. Barring Calaunt, most Vast mages are majestic and glamorous people, confident in their power and happy to display it. They tend to dress in fine clothes that are as suitable for traveling and adventuring as they are for meeting nobility. They wear jewelry and other accessories, often magical, but they remain tasteful.

Rogues of the Vast are often members of the thieves’ guilds that dominate most of the cities and the larger towns. Often, they have no choice. In Procampur or away from the cities, rogues tend to be self-taught thieves or adventurers. When not practicing the thief’s trade, they tend to be dandies, dressing in bright colours, flowing capes, feathered caps and frills, though they are careful to avoiding clothing that will encumber them or make them vulnerable.

Priests of the Vast vary as much as their respective faiths do, and tend to act as befits the tenets of their church, but where applicable, they are usually similar to the typical Vast adventurers described above, wealthy and extravagant, with the style of a warrior and the flashy glamour or a rogue or a mage. They wear the symbols of their faith like others wear their jewelry, and adventure to enrich their church.

Customs And Culture

Although the villagers prefer to keep to themselves, and the city dwellers are preoccupied with their own goings-on, bards, minstrels and storytellers are welcomed everywhere in the Vast. Folk here are always eager to hear news of the Realms “outside” the Vast, often for entertainment or to reassure themselves of the prosperity they have in the Vast. They also enjoy songs and ballads, even those that they’ve heard a hundred times before, so a wandering bard can find good work touring the Vast. Although there are few local bards of distinction, many overseas bards, typically those from Cormyr, Sembia or the Dales, prefer to cross the Dragon Reach and work in the Vast, where they warmly welcomed and greatly rewarded. Said one such bard, “They treat you as a friend, as an honored guest, and as someone deserving good coin and the best food. Whenever I come into an inn, even if there be five or six harpers already gathered, smiles light up the faces of folk there, and they call out to me as if I were an old friend. Soon, I am. I’ll keep walking those roads until I’m too old to walk anywhere.”

There are a number of unique local customs and festivals celebrated throughout the Vast, though they tend to be more popular in the countryside than they are in the cities. However, these cities each have their own customs and traditions and celebrations.

The Arming (4th Tarsakh). This day commemorates the banding together of farmers and merchants to defeat raids from the Earthfast Mountains, Orc raids along the North Road, and bandit and pirate attacks throughout the Vast. On this day, town militias and city armies are mustered and inspected and well-polished weapons and armour are proudly worn. Youths of both sexes are given gifts of weapons and armour in coming-of-age ceremonies – a sign that they are now old enough to join the local adults in defending their farms and villages. There are also weaponry contests that draw spectators and challengers from miles around. At the end of the day, there are feasts and parties where ballads are sung, local troupes act out famous duels and battles, and tales of deeds of valor are told.

The Plowing (6th Mirtul). This is the traditional day of plowing throughout the Vast. Neighbours often work together to break the ground, and do every farm and field in the village over the course of four days, until every farmer has at least one field ready for planting. At sundown eac day, casks of beer aged over the winter are opened for the evening feasts.

Hornmoot (14th Kythorn). Back in the days of the Dwarven kingdoms of Roldilar, this day marked the first trading day of spring between humans and Dwarves, when the Dwarves emerged from their underground and mountain halls at the end of winter. The Dwarves would blow horns in the mountains to signal their coming, and the humans replied with their own horncalls in settlements that wished to trade. The named derives from ‘horn-meet’ thence to ‘horn-moot’ in the local Dwarven brogue. Lesser ‘moots’ are held on the fourteenth of each month. Dwarves still come to these moots, but the custom was fading with fewer and fewer Dwarves arriving every year, being caught up or killed in Earthfast’s wars with the Orcs. In recent years, with the recovery of Earthfast, Dwarven traders are beginning to show up in greater numbers, and business is picking up. Traders come from as far away as Amn to get quality made Earthfast axes and swords.

The Bone Dance (9th Eleasis). With hunting being a major source of food to the Vast folk, benign worship of Malar is not uncommon in rural areas. This hunting festival is hosted by relatively non-malevolent priests of Malar, and involves a night-time combined pageant and feast held around a bonfire. Magically animated bones of huge stags and other beasts enact stirring hunts, with the very young and very old of the community taking the parts of the hunters. Drinking and feasting continues until late into the night. Early the next morning, the village hunters set out to track down and slay local predators and monsters known to be active in the area.

A land of many adventurers and having had little trouble with even the evil gods of the Realms, the Vast is tolerant of many religions. All the major human faiths can be found in the Vast, particularly Chauntea, Malar (for his hunting focus), Eldath and Torm (mostly for his appearance in Tantras during the Time of Troubles). Shrines honouring the “traveler’s gods” Tymora, Tempus and Waukeen may be found throughout the region. There are many more gods venerated in greater or lesser degrees throughout the land, particularly in the cities.

A common relic of the fallen Dwarven kingdom of Roldilar can still be found here and there along the North Road: boulders carved with the crossed battleaxes of Clangeddin Silverbeard, the Dwarven god of war. Many local warriors, soldiers and militia pray to both Clangeddin and Tempus before going to war in the mountains.

Hunting is a way of life and a source of food for many rural Vast folk. Most hunting is down in the small wooded areas that dot the Vast, usually by a few archers on foot, or by four or more men with spears, daggers, clubs and aided by hunting dogs. Hunting in the foothills and wooded mountain flanks is dangerous, and only overtaken by well-armed bands in times of desperation. Wolves, orcs, bandits and monsters frequently attack overbold hunters in the hills. The game has stayed plentiful over the years, despite the regular hunting by humans. The High Country has acted as a sort of protective breeding ground over the years, where few hunters go. The farmlands below tempt the choicest game animals closer to human habitation, and these animals shelter in the wooded areas where they are then hunted.

All around the Inner Sea, the Vast is known by gourmands for its succulent roast stag, the meat of which is of the highest quality and size. Traditionally, this dish is served on large platters, the first bearing the full rack of antlers to the table, surrounded by sweetmeats and the choicest cuts.

Geography Of The Vast

The lands of the Vast are those that lie along the eastern shore of the Dragon Reach, opposite Sembia, the Dalelands and Cormanthor. In the north, it is bordered by the Flooded Forest, where it neighbours the Moonsea, and the Glacier of the White Worm, beyond which lies the Galena Mountains. The eastern edge of the Vast is formed by the Earthspur Mountains and the Grey Forest, which separate these lands from Impiltur. Although geographically a part of the Unapproachable East, it is culturally and historically the eastern boundary of the Western Heartlands.

The Vast itself is generally accepted as consisting of the lands in around the western arm of the Earthspurs in the north, to the plains and fields between the River Vesper and the Fire River in the central Vast, to the foothills of the Earthspurs in the east, the Earthfast mountains that cut across the land in the south, and the lands on the southern shore of the Vast, eastwards to the Grey Forest.

The Vast is a great open land, relatively sparsely settled though far from empty. With few cities and woodlands to get in the way, the plains and fields stretch all the way to the mountain ranges that ring it, so travelers get a great view of the landscape, and an impression of sheer size. Although not particularly large as realms go, the Vast is well-named, though not intentionally, for it derives from Vastar, the ancient Orc kingdom.

Once, huge forests covered the lands of Vastar, especially along the southern coast. But the Orcs cut down great swathes of woodland to construct boats to enable them to cross the Dragon Reach to attack the Elves of Cormanthor. Although their empires are long gone, the lands remain denuded, leaving only isolated stands of trees and smaller forests, such as the Adhe Wood, Brynwood and the Grey Forest. This has however left the lands of the Vast quite fertile, making farming activity very successful, and paving the way for human settlement.

Much of the Vast is rolling farmlands, with the fields being used for all manner of crops suitable to the climate and grasslands used for grazing herds. The Vast has a mild climate throughout the year, with long cool summers and short mild winters, which contributes to the agricultural prosperity of the land. The fields are divided by low walls made of rocks from the foothills of the mountains and the rubble of ruined buildings of the distant past. Near roads, wild hedges are used instead. Small wooded lots appear here and there among the farms, providing easy wood or hunting for the famers.

Hunting is the other major occupation of the Vast natives, and is a way of life in the High Country. The game is good and plentiful, and provides a good portion of the Vast’s food supplies outside the cities. Boar, deer and black-masked bears roam the forests and mountains.

On the coasts, the shoreline is rocky and high, with many underwater stone reefs that make sailing the coasts hazardous. Where the Earthfasts and the Earthspurs meet the Dragon Reach, the coastline is impassable, with sheer cliffs that can only be scaled by the most skilled climbers. Only at a few points are there accessible ports and sheltered bays, and these are the sites of the great port cities of the Vast. This monopoly on shipping in the region has made these cities havens for sailors and pirates, merchants and travelers.

Many small brooks and streams crisscross the land, but they seldom join the major rivers of the Vesper and the Fire. Instead they end in pools that drain into subterranean rivulets that flow down towards the Inner Sea. Some spring up again later and repeat the process. This ensures that fresh water is usually available in most parts of the Vast, thus furthering the land’s fertility and helping local settlements. The crazy jigsaw water table us due to the broken and tilted layers of rock that lie under the deep soil of the Vast. The local Dwarves say that is looks like a huge cauldron of ice chunks was stirred and allowed to freeze with the ice sticking up at odd angles. This all leaves quite a few small sinkholes, caves and rifts about the land. They are well hidden, and usually known only to locals intimately familiar with the surrounding lands. Local farm children often use these to hide from people and each other in a supposedly empty fields, while a number of farmers and adventures either use them to hide their wealth or bury treasure. Others simply build privies over them. They are also occasionally used as hideouts by bandits or wandering orcs and goblinoids.

Due to the scrambled nature of the underlying bedrock, the Underdark of the Vast is quite sparse, poor and uninhabited, though relatively wild. It is a part of the Underdark region known as the Deep Wastes, and this name is quite fitting. Underdark races trying to settle here usually get lost and move on or die or starvation. However this maze-like geography means that much of it is unexplored and almost anything could be down here and undiscovered. The only real inhabitants that are known of are small warring settlements of Dwarves, Orcs and Goblinoids, and even then only in the caves of the Earthfasts and the Earthspurs. The most prominent Underdark city is Earthspur, the beleagured Dwarven city.

History Of The Vast

The most ancient history of the Vast region is lost in the mists of time, mostly like buried in forgotten Elven or Dwarven vaults, or destroyed outright by the Orcs. A scant few scraps of history remain however, that hint at events of this time.

-6400 DR: After the Elves saved the Dwarves of Sarphil from defeat by the Orcs, they meet on the battlefields of the Vast to forge a tenuous alliance.

-1535 DR: The Elven city of Ylraphon is established on the eastern edge of Cormanthor, across the River Lis, called Nuathlis by the Elves.

-722 DR: The Elven city of Ylraphon is attacked several times by Drow raiders in the winter. In the summer, Orc hordes overwhelm the city’s weakened defenses, and the city falls. Elven refugees, aided by the Srinshee, escape back to Cormanthyr, while the Orcs live amongst the ruins.

The First Vastar

The origin of the name “the Vast” is lost in antiquity, but most sages agrees that it is derived from the name of Orc kingdom of Vastar, or something similar, which ruled all the lands of the eastern shore of the Dragon Reach.

At this time, Elves ruled the western shore of the Dragon Reach from the fabled Myth Drannor and the immense forest of Cormanthor, Dragons laired around the Moonsea and the Dragon Reach, and few humans were seen, save adventurers and explorers. The lands east of the Dragon Reach were dominated by the Orcs of Vastar.

Vastar was hardly a unified nation. It was a chaotic mess of infighting, constant coups, counter-attacks and strife with all the other inhabitants of the mountains. Despite this, the high birthrate of the Orcs allowed them recover from even the bloodiest civil war or dragon raid (young dragons would dine of roast Orc, plucked from hillsides and gatherings by the talonful). Every dozen years, they would gather into hordes and build or seize ships to sail south to plunder and slay, or west to raid and slaughter the Elves. Few Orcs returned – they spread out across the Realms into warmed and richer lands, and thereby relieved the overcrowing at home

Their ships were crude and ramshackle, called “barges with sails” by elven writer of the time. To build them, they hacked down the forests of the Vast, until little remained, and they were forced to march north, around the Reach to take from Cormanthor itself. Between hordes, armies of Orcs crossed the River Lis, and were massacred by Elven arrows and magic as they crossed the marshy banks. This earned the Lis the nickname “Blood River”, which local Orcs and Half-Orcs still use today.

-700s & -600s DR: The Orcs rule Vastar, all the lands that are now known as the Vast.

Roldilar, the first Realm of Glimmering Swords

In time, Vastar waned when Dwarves moved into the area, coming west and south underground, following veins of ore. After several subterranean skirmishes, the Dwarven war-councils determined that no Orc who had seen a Dwarf in the mines must be allowed to live, so that no word would get back to the chieftains. However, Goblins and Kobolds, enslaved by the Orcs to work their mines were ignored by the Dwarves, but they never told their Orcish overseers, or aided them the Dwarves attacked.

The Dwarves then founded Roldilar, the first Realm of Glimmering Swords, and were strong in the Earthfast Mountains.

The Chondathan Migrations

-255 DR: A tidal wave created by elven high magic destroys Jhaamdath, the human empire dedicated to psionics, in what is now the Vilhon Reach after Jhaamdathan loggers decimated the Chondalwood. Refugees of Jhaamdath traveled around the Sea of Fallen Stars to settle the lands of Impiltur, Thesk and the Vast. They consist primarily of pragmatic prospectors, elf-hating soldiers, merchants, peaceful scholars and farmers, and would later become known as Chondathans.

-200 DR: Jhaamdathan settlers from Impiltur and the Vast cross the Dragon Reach to colonise the Dalelands.

-153 DR: Chondathans originally from Jhaamdath sail north across the Sea of Fallen Stars to settle the southern slopes of the Earthfasts. The Dwarves found Proeskampalar, a mining colony and outpost of Roldilar.

-73 DR: Chondathan migrants settle above Proeskampalar, with the permission of the Dwarves below.

-72 DR: Chondathan settlers found Chessagol (later known as Tsurlagol).

1 DR: Another wave of Chondathan settlers migrates west from Impiltur and the Vast, into the Dalelands and founding Cormyr. The Standing Stone is raised by the Dalesfolk and the Elves of Cormanthyr.

The Second Vastar

The Orcs of Vastar are resurgent by this time, under a Chief who is cunning but lost to history. Roldilar falls, but the Dwarves hold fast in their mountain halls. Proeskampalar stands firms against the hordes, safe behind their strong walls, while Chessagol is sacked and burned.

The Orcs take to shipbuilding once again, and finally completely decimate the forests of the Vast, reducing them to the grasslands and isolated stands of trees of today.

331 DR: Late in the year, the Orcs of Vastar launch a several unexpected attacks on eastern Cormanthyr, overwhelming the Elven defenses and occupying the lands east of the Old Elven Court.

The Orcs spent the next few years consolidating their forces and hold on eastern Cormanthor. They explored the ruins of the ancient Elven temple city.

335 DR: The Orcs slaughter a thousand Cormanthyr soldiers in the Darkwoods Massacre. Mystery surrounded the circumstances of this defeat, until it was later found to be due to incompetence and bigotry among the Elven officers.

339 DR: A alliance of Humans and Elves rout the Orcs from Eastern Cormanthor.

Vastar remained quiet for a time, but continued to dominate the Vast until they built their numbers up into another horde.

512 DR: The Orcs rampage out of Vastar and other strongholds, attacking Cormanthyr and engulfing many lands in war. They are defeated by the Elves in Cormanthor, and the power of Vastar is reduced.

523 DR: Proeskampalar is refounded and renamed Procampur.

572 DR: Overking Ologh, a monstrous Orc who ruled Vastar, dies in battle with Iyauroth, the Wyrm of the Peaks, a black dragon. His throne is left vacant, and several factions of Orcs contend for it.

Over the next eight years, the Orcs of Vastar were consumed in a vicious and bloody civil war as factions fought each other for the position of Overkind. Many Orcs died in this conflict.

This conflict continued until Grimmerfang defeated and ceremonially spitted, cooked and ate the last of his rivals. He renamed Ologh’s court in the Hollow Mountain “Mount Grimmerfang”.

580 DR: The Orc Overking Grimmerfang claims the throne of Vastar after defeating his rivals, and ends the wars amongst the Orcs.

The Dwarves had been working in secret with a few Humans and Elves to develop a steel whose bite was poison to Orcs, called “orcslayer” metal, and this were fashioned into weapons called orcslayer blades. The secrets of making orcslayer blades have been lost to the ages. The sage Fairin Icemantle had misgivings about these blades, fearing that they would be the first step in the making of weapons harmful to other races, and bringing ruin to the Realms. His work “Treatise Against Blood-Metal” gives the only first hand account of the Dwarven victories.

The Orcs of Vastar, weakened by their earlier invasions of Cormanthor and by civil war stood little chance. The Dwarves broke out of their mountain caverns and invaded the Orcish lands to “run in waist-high riot across the land”, in the words of Fairin. Grimmerfang was slain in his court in Mound Grimmerfang, which became his tomb.

The location of Grimmerfang was lost over the years, and the few Dwarven elders who could still identify it would not speak of it to Humans or Elves. In truth, the Dwarves had made their throne and city beneath Mount Grimmerfang, and desired to keep its location secret.

610 DR: The Dwarves conquer the lands of the Vast, overcome Grimmerfang and the Orcs, and re-found Roldilar, the second Realm of Glimmering Swords.

Roldilar, the second Realm of Glimmering Swords

The victorious Dwarves droves the Orcs far to the north and south into the mountain heights, and claimed all of the Vast as their own. They founded a new Roldilar, a resurrection of the old Realm of Glimmering Swords. Roldilar was ruled by the Deep King Tuir, Blood of Helban, called “Stonebeard” for his grim stoicism and slow humour. He set his throne beneath Mount Grimmerfang.

They build stone towers to keep watch against Orcish attacks, and brought herds of sheep, goats and shaggy-hair cattle up from the lands south of the Inner Sea to graze on the rolling grasslands cleared by the Orcs. The Roldilar Dwarves devoted themselves to drinking (concocting legendary fiery liquors), mining and making fine armour, weaponry and jewelry. They sold these for more livestock and honey for their mead.

611 - 616 DR: The Dwarven city of Sarbreen is built. It will later become Ravens Bluff.

Now that the Orcs were gone, the lands of the Vast under Dwarven rule became habitable once more, and another wave of Human settlers came, among these the powerful archmage Maskyr.

Maskyr was exploring the Realms for a secluded place where he could build his tower, and he found such a place in the far north of the Vast. He came upon it one morning, a valley shrouded in mountain mists, quiet and beautiful. He decided he would make his home there, and there alone.

Maskyr sought an audience with Deep King Tuir mac Helban and asked his price for the Vale. Silence fell over the court as Tuir thought on this for a good long time, stroking his beard, but Maskyr was patient and his eyes met the stony gaze of the Deep King.

Although Tuir was loathe to give up the hard won lands of the Vast to Humans, but was fearful of the mage’s power. At last he replied “The vale is yours, from rim to rim and beneath the grass as deep as four men stand upon each other’s shoulders, upon one condition only. Pluck out thy right eye and give it to me, here and now, and the vale is thine.”

To the astonishment and horror of the Roldilarren Court, Maskyr did exactly that, without hesitation. Tuir, with great respect for the Human, kept his end of the bargain, and gave Maskyr the vale and commanded that no Dwarf disturb his studies. Maskyr, now called One-Eye, lived contentedly alone in his vale for several centuries before disappearing, presumably slain, whilst on an interplanar journey. The valley later became the village of Maskyr’s Eye.

645 DR: The archmage Maskyr gives his eye to the Deep King Tuir as the cost of buying his valley. The first of another wave of settlers begins making permanent settlements in the Vast.

The Realm of Glimmering Swords knew only forty years of peace before falling to swarms of resurgent Orcs in the north. The Dwarves met the Orc and Goblinoid horde at Viperstongue Ford over the River Vesper, but the Dwarves were defeated, setting up a long retreat that ending in the battle of Deepfires, a long and bloody fight that raged throughout the subterranean passages of the mountains for nearly twenty days. This infamous battle is still remembered in Dwarven laments and sayings, such as “I feel as if my axe is broken in the midst of Deepfires”, often muttered by Dwarves who are sick, depressed, in pained or simply overwhelming by a multitude of woes.

The Dwarves of Roldilar avoided extinction with the aid of Human and Elven allies, particularly the elven hero Beluar, who aided the Roldilarren Dwarves against the Orcs. He and his forces would later rout the Orcs at Viperstongue Ford, and vengefully pursued them north into a rugged line of hills southwest of Kurth, and thence to Maskyr’s Eye, where Beluar himself slew the last Orc on the road outside the town smithy. Beluar’s efforts saved the remnants of the Dwarves in the Vast, and saved them from extinction. The hills became known as Beluar’s Hunt, as did one of Kurth’s inns, the other is called the Rolling Heads Inn in honour of the most notable token the Orcs left behind.

Beluar then went south with his riders, but they were ambushed by Orcs in a mountain pass south of Ravens Bluff, and all were slain. This pass became known as Elvenblood Pass, while the nearby village of High Haspur has an inn named the Elf in Armour in their memory. The heroes were buried in a grassy mound known as Beluar’s Tomb in the centre of the small hamlet of Sarbreenar, marked by an intricately carved stone obelisk erected by grateful Dwarves in honour of their fallen ally.

Although the Orcs won, their victory came at high price, for the Dwarves fought hard to defend their homes. Few Orcs survived the Deepfires, and Beluar and his riders greatly lessened their number. Vastar has yet to rise again.

The Dwarves retreated from their former homes, migrating overseas to the east and south, while others went to isolated and hidden communities deep in the Vast, or joined with Human cities on the surface.

649 DR: The Orcs overrun the Dwarves, and Roldilar, the second Realm of Glimmering Swords falls. A new wave of Human settlers arrives in the Vast.

The Age Of Glorious Fools

The fall of Roldilar triggered a new wave of settlement in the Vast, as Humans came in great numbers to exploit the power vacuum. Some came south from the Vilhon Reach, others were lesser nobles of Impiltur seeking prosperity elsewhere. They pushed the Orcs back into the mountains and established a foothold south of the Fire River.

They spread rapidly across the wartorn Vast, clashing often with the Orcs and clearing out the monsters of the mountains that had grown numerous feasting upon the dead and dying. They cleared land for farms, collected rubble and fieldstone to build low walls and built good roads between settlements. Adventuring bands built themselves keeps and defended the pioneers for a “shield tax”.

As one elven writer put it, the Humans bred “almost as recklessly as the burners” (ie. Orcs), and their numbers swelled, from immigration and birthrate. Human settlements sprung up all over the Vast, pushing the Orcs, Goblinoids and other monsters and predators back into the mountains.

An influx of Human adventurers aided in the settlement of the Vast, folk who cheerfully sought out adventure. Bards of the Vast called this the “Age of Glorious Fools”, after the many adventurers who took on hopeless odds and undertook foolhardy and attacks – and won almost as often as they lost. This age is said to still be in progress, a time of pioneering and adventuring spirit.

With good roads free of monsters and patrolled by adventurers linking the ports of Procampur and Tsurlagol to rest of the Vast, and then to Mulmaster on the Moonsea, and several years of bountiful harvests, Human rule of the area was assured. New ports sprung up along the coast: Calaunt, Tantras and the old Dwarven city of Sarbreen (later called Ravens Bluff or the Living City). These ports became trade stops, pirate havens and immigration landing spots, and the Vast prospered under Human settlement. Wealthy farmers and adventurers became the ruling people of Vast communities.

However this age was not good for all races of the Vast. Hobgoblins marched down from the Earthspur Mountains to attack the Moon Elves of the Grey Forest. The Elves fought them, but were steadily defeated. Facing extinction but unwilling to leave their homes, the Elves instead transformed themselves into majestic trees with grey back. Circles of these can be found all over the forest, and other humanoids avoid the area entirely, for the unsettling eeriness of the place. Wood Elves continue to live in the western side of the forest however.

1164 DR: King Palaghard 1st mistakenly declares on war on Procampur.

1222 DR: Ravens Bluff is established over the ruins of Sarbreen, a Dwarven city of that was once part of Roldilar.

1253 DR: Plague strikes Cormyr, Sembia and the Vast.

Mid 1200s DR: A horde of Hobgoblins threatens Procampur, but they are destroyed by the mage Snilloc.

1337 DR: Charles Oliver O’Kane wins the rule of Ravens Bluff and becomes Mayor.

1353 DR: Ironbane’s Rest is founded.

The Time Of Troubles

1358 DR: The Time Of Troubles strikes Toril.

An unnatural windstorm tears through Hlintar, causing a few thousand undead to rise from their graves and attack the town, while the living inhabitants flee to Calaunt, Tantras and Ravens Bluff. The god Torm appears in Tantras and destroys much of the city while battling against the god Bane.

The Sarbreenar Wyrm, a huge green dragon, attacks Sarbreenar and Procampur. Nobles and merchants of Procampur and Tsurlagol flee to their country estates near Maerstar, but are beset by looting mobs and refugees from Tantras, Mulmaster and Calaunt.

The high priest of Oghma in Procampur, and the Grand Patriach of the Oghmyte faith, disappears from his home in Procampur, causing a schism in the church.

Recent History

1367 DR: The Featherlung plague strikes Procampur.

1370 DR: Myrkyssa Jelan and her army of monsters and mercenaries bypasses Tantras and attacks Ravens Bluff. Lord Mayor Charles Oliver O’Kane is ousted, while Lady Mayor Amber Thoden takes over and helps rebuild.

1372 DR: Amber Thoden is deposed and flees after it is revealed that she was Myrkyssa Jelan. O’Kane resumes his rule of Ravens Bluff.

This message was last edited by the GM at 14:41, Tue 08 May 2007.

DM BadCatMan
 GM, 190 posts
Wed 19 Jul 2006
at 07:06

Welcome to fair Procampur, the shining jewel of Law and Order in The Vast. A city of merchants and guards, of walls and coloured roofs. Obey the law.


Procampur is an old and wealthy city, proud of its independence, its laws and regimentation, and famous for its walls and colour-coded districts. With a focus on trade, and skill at gem cutting and goldsmithing, the city has grown rich and prosperous, and with a strict government and watchful, competent authorities, the crime rate is low and its people safe.

Procampur is a large city, with 24, 631 people as of a 1370 DR census, of which 97% are human, 1% dwarves, 1% half-elves, and 1% are other races. (This number is greatly reduced from the 1358 DR figure of roughly 49,000. This is due to the effects of the 1367 plague, the fleeing refugees of the Time of Troubles of 1358, and a recent decision to discount the transient travelers of the Docks District.)

History & Relations:

Procampur is an old and venerable city, counting its history back to before the start of Dale Reckoning. It is easily the oldest and most respectable of the sister cities of the Vast, as well as the richest and most secure, if not quite the most powerful. It may not have the historical fame of Ravens Bluff or Tantras, but the people of Procampur like it that way, calling it evidence of their city’s stability and strength. Of all the cities of the Vast, Procampur is the only one that the people of Ravens Bluff really look up to and respect. Many adventurers of Ravens Bluff of the Vast move to Procampur, a move often taken as a sign of success. Having stood unconquered for nearly a millennium unconquered and undefeated makes Procampur a city to be respect.

The land on which Procampur rests was originally the site of an old dwarven mining colony known as Proeskampalar, founded in -153 DR, an outpost of Roldilar, the Realm of Glimmering Swords. The dwarves here made a name for themselves with ornate and fine quality gems and gold work, and other precious metals, and Proeskampalar quickly grew famous. There was heavy trade with Westgate and other cities around the Vast, the Dragon Reach and across the Sea of Fallen Stars. The mine-workings and settlements of Proeskampalar can still occasionally be found today, not too far from the surface, if one feels like mucking around in the sewers or excavating the rubble of the ages. The city authorities do tend to frown on treasure-hunters digging up their precious city streets however.

This age of peace and prosperity was not to last however. After only 80 years, human migrants settled the lands directly above Proeskampalar, probably not even noticing the underground town’s existence. A deal was made, whereby the humans would farm and provide food for the dwarves whilst the dwarves would allow them to settle the land and work alongside them. Knowing dwarven stubbornness, the humans didn’t have much choice but to agree.

But the dwarves didn’t reckon on the humans’ capacity to breed and multiply. With a prosperous human community and an influx of migrants, the human population grew and grew until they were equal with the dwarves. A town, above and below, grew, and the both communities prospered.

But with such prosperity came thieves and pirates. The crime rate soared, and shipments across the Dragon Reach were hijacked. Things reached a head in 7 DR when the people of Proeskampalar hired mercenaries to stop the thieves and pirates. But the mercenaries, realizing the wealth of the citizens, increased their fees, threatening to give the criminals a free hand if they didn’t accept. And once the mercenaries were there, they too would not leave.

In 20 DR, a campaign was mounted to thwart the efforts of the mercenaries, pirates and crime lords. This effort was led by the dwarven clans of Rockfist, Hillsafar and Deepaxe, in alliance with the human families of Hannith, Grimm and Thultyrl. Chief among these was the mage Nesian Thultyrl, who used his arcane power combined with skillful tactics. The mercenaries were brought under control, the criminal element was ousted, and Nesian Thultyrl became the ruler of the city, while the other great clans and families became the first Noble Houses.

Nesian Thultyrl was a man of many laws. Many many laws. While many citizens grumbled at the regulations put into place, few could find anything overtly wrong with them. Most were common sense and obvious. Some… less so. But Nesian was well-respected, and a hero, so no-one bothered to argue.

As well as instating a system a thorough system of laws, Nesian drew up plans for the city. His first act as leader was to start the construction of a fortress to better defend the city, an effort that was completed 20 years later. This was followed by a great ring of city-walls. Nesian died before he could see his city completed, but he charged his descendents and successors with the task of completing his plan.

The construction efforts took nearly five hundred years, but the city-walls were finally completed in 523 DR. A week along celebration ensued, and this event is still celebrated every year in Procampur. The reason for his long construction time is unclear; perhaps later rulers had little interest in the walls, or the dwarven stoneworkers worked at a typically dwarven pace. The population and prosperity of the city had grown immensely. It may even be possible that the expanding city kept escaping the walls, necessitating new construction. This may even have lead to the system of warded districts that Procampur currently enjoys.

At this time, the city was refounded as Procampur, perhaps to reflect the prevailing human population’s linguistic corruption of the original dwarven name. The human population now greatly outnumbers the dwarven population, due to rapid human multiplication while dwarven numbers waned.

In 1164 DR, Procampur nearly went to war with Cormyr. King Palaghard 1st of Cormyr had commissioned the great jewelers of Procampur to make him a crown, but shortly after his coronation, the crown was stolen by the legendary pirate lord Immurk The Invincible. Enraged, Palaghard mustered armies in preparation for war with Procampur, believing the city to have reneged on the job and keeping the payment. The crown was recovered shortly thereafter, and war was narrowly averted. The crown is no longer worn by the rulers of the Cormyr, having been relegated to the vaults after only three months of use. It is said to be a hideous, top-heavy lump of gold, silver and gemstones. The jewelers of Procampur will insist that the design of the crown is entirely the fault of Palaghard I, and nothing to do with them.

Since the founding of Procampur, the city has remained solid and independent, standing unconquered and unswayed in proud independence. The government has smashed countless attempts to found thieves’ guilds, and crime has been kept to a bare minimum. The city maintains a strong army and a stronger navy that has decisively beaten both Mulmaster and Sembia in naval battles. There is currently a mutual defense treaty with Tsurlagol that has been to both cities’ benefit. Good relations are also maintained with Lyrabar and Impiltur.

Since the days of the dwarves, the city is known for its gems, gold and other precious metals. It also continues to be a force in the march of progress: a recent development is a thriving printing business that uses new-fangled printing machines for everything from pamphlets to books in an effort supported by the churches of Oghma and Denier. Spearheading this business in Forgemaster Inkstain, a dwarven printer from Dwarves’ Deep, who has been known to employ ogres.

Procampur’s accepting nature was shown in 1344 DR when the government granted the Thayan Samas Kul permission to open a small Thayan Quarter, creating what would become the first of the Thayan enclaves.

As with all the lands of Faerun, the Time Of Troubles was a source of many problems for Procampur. At the time, a huge green dragon known as the Sarbreenar Wyrm dominated the town the Sarbreenar, destroying its buildings and devouring people, travelers and livestock. In time, the wyrm ran out of food and grew hungry, and flew south to attack Procampur, tearing the roofs off houses and devouring the people inside. By the third such raid, the Procampans had hired a wizard who destroyed the wyrm in a bloody mess using a spell of his own creation, swordball. The remains of the dragon fell into the harbour.

Following this, and the general fear and panic that arose during the Time of Troubles, many nobles and merchants of Procampur and Tsurlagol fled to their country houses in Maerstar. They found no safety however, and were beset by looting mobs and refugees fleeing Tantras, Mulmaster and Calaunt. Rumours abound of buried treasure hoards hidden by desperate nobles and merchants, but dying before they could recover them.

Procampur had its own divine event as well. During the Troubles, the Grand Patriach of Oghma, the overall head of the Oghmyte church in Faerun and high priest of Oghma in Procampur, disappeared. Theories and rumours over the nature of this disappearance abounded. Some claimed that Oghma had died and was replaced by the patriarch, others assumed that he had simply died in the chaos of the Troubles. Answers from the gods have been conflicting and confusing, and the arguments have led to a splintering of the church of Oghma. The Domes, and the Oghmyte religion itself, remain divided to this day, operating without an ultimate head, while the High Patriarch’s former home has become a shrine to Oghma. The varying branches of the Oghmytes have co-operated thus far, but a rift between the Sembian and Cormyrean churches is widening.

Tragedy struck again in 1367 DR, when a plague hit the city. Thought to have entered via the Docks District, the featherlung disease killed hundreds of citizens, mostly in the Greystreets, while those of other Districts kept to their townhouses and places of work. The lower classes traveled to the Temple District, where they were administered by clerics of Torm and Helm, but hundreds of sick people passing up and down the Great Way spread the plague further, even reinfecting the cured. Some priests, led by Orn Thavil of Tymora and Baniya Dolester of Lliira set up auxiliary shrines in the Poor District to deal with the problem directly, and this action prevented the disease from spreading further and ultimately stamped it out, although a few cases resurface occasionally.

During the chaos of the plague, Procampur showed a previously hidden dark side, when a panicked mob lynched and hung a woman who they accused of being a priestess of Talona. She claimed to be a sailor from Prespur (possibly a pirate), and presumably her facial tattoos had aroused suspicion. Before she died, she cursed the mob to suffer far worse in the future.

When the city returned to calm, there were accusations that the city authorities and other districts had been too slow to act against the featherlung outbreak, causing an unnecessary number of deaths. Orn Thavil and Baniya Dolester were reprimanded by Thultyrl Rendeth (in an uncharacteristic display of firmness) and Hamayarch Alamondh for violating city customs - performing religious activities outside the Temple District. They were reminded that Procampur and its Laws are older than many deities of the Realms. Procampur has since recovered, and is just as prosperous as it ever was.


Procampur is a city of laws. Many many laws. Although some visitors feel stifled and oppressed by them, most find them to be firm but fair and not terribly onerous. Most are typical, obvious laws that any city is likely to have. Others are less so. The Procampans are proud of their laws however, no matter how silly they might get. They claim that their laws made their city what it is, and they might be right.

The laws of Procampur originate from the time when Nesian Thultyrl and the other great families of the city kicked out the pirates and mercenaries. The laws were a much needed solution to major crime problem. The Procampan love of law and order probably originated with the original dwarven inhabitants.

The guards of the city are strict and firm, but usually fair. Rumours of a ruthless secret police force are beginning to arise, but there is yet little evidence for this. The docks, ever a haven of miscreant sailors and vagrants remains the heart of criminal activity, but the crime-rates are much lower than in other cities. The government and its guards have thwarted several attempts to found a thieves’ guild. The guards are vigilant and people feel safe walking the streets at night.

Visitors need a valid reason to enter the city, and they are searched and their names taken down. People may only enter during daylight, when they can be more easily investigated. Upon entering the city, the gate guards patiently but faithfully explain the city’s lengthy list of laws.

They begin thusly: “According to the laws set forth long ago by the founders of this fine city, the laws are to be followed by citizens, merchants, and adventurers alike.  No killing or stealing will be allowed within the borders of the wall.  No concealed weapons may be carried. Falsifying documents for your own need is prohibited, along with weighing the scales to get more money.  Cheating..." These go on for a good ten minutes with typical laws.

They end on a few unusual ones. "No priest, or otherwise follower, of Oghma shall be mocked. Neither the Thultyrl nor Hamayarch shall be disobeyed. Only the Thultyrl and Hamayarch are exempt from any of these laws at any given time."

No doubt Oghma was the patron god of the original Thultyrl, Nesian. The final two laws are more than a little suspicious. Some theorise that Nesian or the original Hamayarch was plans for tyranny that never surfaced, but this is so far just conjecture. It is considered rather more likely that these are archaic holdovers from the time when the pirates and thieves were dealt with mercilessly. In any case, no Thultyrl or Hamayarch has so far tried to abuse these laws.

As with any city, Procampur has accumulated a few of the more ridiculous laws over the years. Ordinarily the guards do not read these out, but once Procampur has a law, it stays there. A selection of these follows: “Breaking the Law is against the Law. Making fun of the Law is against the Law. Purple nunchaku may not be used on Second-days of Eleint. It is forbidden to place pies in one’s pocket.”


A famous peculiarity of Procampur is its system of districts, whereby different areas are reserved for different activities. Royal orders are quite strict when it comes to which activities can be performed in each district. Each district has the same colour roof as an indicator; ostensibly so that people don’t get lost, but it is more likely that Nesian Thultyrl was a very fussy man.

Unusually, the Districts do not wall off different social classes, but activities. Citizens must often travel the length and breadth of the city to go about their daily lives and carry out their business, but they must come into contact with other people. As a result, the rich cannot completely ignore the poor, and nor do they look (too far) down upon them, despite their palanquins.

Each district is divided by thick stone walls that are 15ft high. Passage from district to district is controlled by gates, each with guards. There are 8 districts in all. People tend to live in the districts in which they work.

Military. White. The only exceptions to the colour-coded district rules are the guard posts, army barracks, stables and other military and naval buildings. These are placed around the city in strategic positions. Their roofs are white to distinguish them from surround buildings.

Castle District. Gold. This district contains the Palace of the Thultyrl and the High Court, as well as a few servants quarters and services that are necessarily close to the Palace. There are also the main stables and guard barracks with white roofs.

Nobles’ District. Silver. This district is home to the mansions and palaces of the city’s nobles and merchant lords. As in the Castle District, the streets are flagged and well-maintained, and are lit with magical street lamps. The city’s few parks can be found here. Many nobles favour mansions with high walls adorned with spikes and gargoyles.

Temple District. Shining Black. Temples to all of Procampur’s major gods can be found here, as well as some of the smaller or less popular.

Merchants’ District. Sea-Green. The city’s lesser merchants can be found here, in narrow streets consisting of workshops and stores and marketplaces. A centre of the city’s industry, there are regular smells of smoke or sewage or food. Many merchants live here too, residing in their shops.

Services District. Yellow. This district is home to all people and business that provide services, from servants to handy people to restaurants and taverns.

Sea District. Blue. This district is home to the city’s sailors and outfitters, as well as number of cargo storage warehouses and shipping businesses.

Adventurer’s District. Red. Somehow, adventurers of the Vast have earned their own District within Procampur. This is home to those who make their livings by exploration or travel or other dangerous pursuits. Here are the magic shoppes, weapon stores, and dealers in rare items and treasures. There are also magic schools, warrior training arenas, and retired adventurers who teach the younger generations there craft. The city guards do not patrol this District often – adventurers tend to have difficulties with the Law – but with a district full of people who can take of themselves in a fight, and are itching to do so, there is a little crime. Adventurers might also seek haven in here, if they have run afoul of the Law.

Poor District. Grey. Also known as Greystreets. All buildings here are owned by the Thultyrl and provided to the poor and lower-classed of the city. This area is home to the beggars, the unemployed and the poorest city labourers. There is no actual stigma applied the people of the Poor District – this area is effectively the suburbs.

Docks. None. The buildings clustered around the docks do not follow the city’s rules on roof colour. This area is a chaos of different styles, sizes and roof colours. It is home to the fisherfolk, shipbuilders, foreign sailors and traders. It also stables all the civilian livestock and mounts. The Procampan government has little influence in this district, and the area has grown crowded and dank, and has become a centre for crime, rowdy taverns and seedy activities. This area also contains the Thayan Enclave. Inns here are popular with adventurers (especially those who’d rather stay out of the city proper), like The Silent Sword, which is quiet and moderately priced, and the Happy Hippocampus, which is much noisier but cheaper, and recently has undergone several changes of ownership, and is now known as the Happy Half-Elf.

1. Docks District
2. District of the Poor
3. Sea District
4. Services District
5. Nobles' District
6. Castle District (High Court and Palace)
7. Temple District
8. Merchants' District
9. Adventurers' District


The rule of Nesian Thultyrl was passed down through the family line, becoming a hereditary position. In time, the family name became the title of the position of overlord of Procampur, and the Thultyrls themselves referred to themselves as the Royal Blood in order to distinguish themselves.

The current Thultyrl is Rendeth of the Royal Blood. He is a young and vigorous warrior, but he is known to be level-headed and is popular with the people. Rendeth trusts and respects the advice of his advisor, the Hamayarch Alamondh.

The Hamayarch is another traditional position, appointed by the Thultyrls to trusted mages who advise and protect the overlord and the city. Previous Hamayarchs have been greatly loyal to the Thultyrls.

The current Hamayarch is Alamondh, who also served Rendeth’s sire and grand-sire. Although Rendeth trusts Alamondh due to long family service, some mutter that the mage is engaged in criminal activities. Similar rumours link him to the tales of secret police. Through his long service, Alamondh is quite wealthy, and owns land outside Procampur.

Procampur is also home to a significant number of nobles. Initially these consisted of the human families and dwarven clans that chased out the pirates and mercenaries – Rockfist, Hillsafar, Deepaxe on the dwarven side, and Hannith and Grimm on the human side. But as merchants grew richer and fatter, they claimed noble status and moved into the Nobles’ District. The heads of the noble families are known as Dukes and Duchesses.

Foremost and most typical of the Nobles is Duke Jozul Piniago, a portly and boorish man who made a profit selling supplies for the war against the Tuigan Horde. Piniago is known for his big lavish parties and banquets, and he is a lover of fine food, a fact evident in his girth. Piniago funds the arts and literature, but this is mainly for the prestige in owning them, especially if no one else does.

The nobles of Procampur almost always travel in palanquins carried by bearers, as if they dare not touch the streets. They dress lavishly and expensively, and are perfumed with powdered faces and elaborately coifed hair. They openly hire courtesans as escorts, who enjoy some measure of respectability.


A number of gods are represented in Procampur’s Temple District. Here, the temples and churches are predominantly built of stone and have black roofs, as per city instructions. Apart from this restriction, the temples have all manner of architectural styles representative of their respective sects. The major temples and their gods are listed below, but many smaller temples dedicated to less well known deities can also be found. The high priests of the various religions in Procampur are traditionally known as Hierarchs. They adopt this title for matters dealing with Procampur, and use their church’s formal titles when dealing with matters outside Procampur.

Helm. With a surfeit of guards and a focus on their profession, Helm is particularly popular, particularly among the guards. His temple is called the Tower of the Eye, and is governed by High Guardian Endra Watchever.

Oghma. Being the patron god of the city’s founder, and having his respect codified in the Laws, Oghma enjoys a popular following, as does his assistant Denier. Many nobles pay respect to both gods, even if they only fund the arts for personal prestige. Oghma’s temple is called The Domes of Reason, and is the centre of Oghmyte faith in Faerun. The position of high priest, known as Grand Patriarch, remains unfilled. Adjoined to the Domes is a church of Denier, where the high priest in Hierarch (also called Prelate) Wenslan Amthur. Together, these temples are the foremost authorities on geography outside Faerun. Both churches benefit from the burgeoning printing industry. Some controversy arose in the Domes during the Time of Troubles; this is detailed in the History section.

Torm. As with Helm, Torm enjoys a good following amongst the guards. His temple is called the House of the Hand, and is governed by High Priest Pallar the Obedient.

Tymora. With many merchants and passing adventurers, the goddess of luck also enjoys a strong following. Her temple is known as the Lady’s Happy Hall, and is guided by High Priest Orn Thavil.

Tyr. The god of laws enjoys a particularly strong following in the city of laws, especially amongst judges and lawyers.

Waukeen. With an emphasis on trade, Procampur is home to many merchants who all pay homage to the goddess of trade. Her temple is called the Hall of Success, and is governed by High Priest Undil Latheen. The disappearance of Waukeen during the Time of Troubles hit Latheen and the Hall of Success hard, and the church was administered by clerics of Lliira under their high priest Baniya Dolester until Waukeen returned. Business has since picked up the church runs smoothly once again.

Other deities are represented here, although they are less prominent in Procampur. These include Lliira, Mystra and Lathander. The Temple District also has an open area for the erection of temporary shrines. In keeping with Procampan style, this place is something of a marketplace, where traveling priests hawk their blessings.


Procampans love their food. The city is famous for its restaurants and cafes, and the nobles for their magnificent banquets and expansive girths. Even the poorest of Procampans can find the time and money to eat big, engaging in great family meals on holidays and special occasions. People of all walks of life in Procampur will meet each other over meals and dinner invitations.

The meals of Procampur often consist of meats and vegetables, in stews, roasts or pies, with rich flavourful sauces. Goose is particularly favoured, as is fish due to the city’s coastal location. Deserts and snacks are frequently sweet or buttered pastries. These are often made by Procampan chefs to commemorate special occasions and the city’s accomplishments. It is said that every dish in Procampur has a history.

One famous chef was Quimby of Procampur, a gourmand who appreciated great quantities of fine food but grew frustrated and impatient with time spend cooking meals and cleaning up afterwards. He invented a spell, Quimby’s Enchanting Gourmet, a variant on the Unseen Servant that specializes in kitchen tasks. Occasionally, busy bartenders and restaurant chefs of Procampur will employ this spell to aid them in the kitchen, as will retired or absentminded wizards of the city.

The Famous and Infamous Of Procampur

Although Procampur was never the site of any particularly great battles, heroic deeds or Realms-shaking events, Procampur has found some small measure of fame through the heroes, great thinkers and villains that have originated there. Many of these men and women were wizards.

A thousand years ago, the city was once home to Thallastam of Procampur, a famous sage and wandering adventurer. He had a particularly interest in magical swords, and had an extensive collection. Some swords, once documented to be in his possession, have never been found since, and are often rumoured to still be hidden somewhere in the city.

Today, Procampur is known as the foremost authority on geography, maps and the lands and cultures outside of Faerun, especially in the lands of the East, thanks to the efforts of the churchs of Oghma and Denier. Vilhiard of Procampur, the noted scholar-monk of Deneir, carried out many long and dangerous missions into the East for his Hierarch (a common term for high priest in the city), which culminated in the definitive “A Discovery Of The World.” In recent times, the city was home to Koja of Khazari, a historian from Kara-Tur who accompanied the Tuigan Horde. Even outside these temples, the city is known for its writers and traveling historians, such as Athanial the Wind, a wandering traveller and writer of travelogues.

The legendary mage Snilloc, who although not from Procampur, made a name for himself by helping to defend the city from a horde of hobgoblins over a century ago.

A number of less well-known or less influential people of Procampur have also gained some notoriety in the Realms, such as Arrion Weatherspoon, the jester of Ravens Bluff; Hlartenth of Procampur, a Zhentarim mageling under a curse that changes him from male to female every few hours; and Quimby the famous wizard-chef.

Currently the city is home to a number of adventurers, mostly mages, who base themselves in the city and make a big name for themselves at noble courts and in the Adventurers’ District, and causing troubles for the authorities, such as the dashing evoker Jandather and the ambitious adventuress Undylyl Tessran. There is also the Cabal of the Crown, an adventuring band based in Procampur. The retired adventuring mage Ombeddor Steen has risen to nobility, and carries out much magical research in the Adventurers’ District.

Being a centre of magic and the gem-trade, the city is home to a number of prominent figures in these fields, from artisans to merchants, all quite wealthy.
• Opara Rendril is a master smith - her bracelets, belt-daggers, longswords and helms are famous around the Inner Sea.
• Nathchan Belemmor is a gemcutter of matchless skill among humans, but his fits of rage are legendary - he now only makes regalia expressly for the royalty and nobility, having offended too many of his lesser customers.
• Torstan Ulzimmer is a master shipwright, known for his fast, sleek ships, said to be the best equipped and manned on the Inner Sea. He spares no expense, hiring only the best men and women, and buying only the finest materials.
• Keldor Hannith is a mage that runs a popular business selling scrolls and potions in Procampur and throughout the Vast. Only with great care and tact has he managed to keep up with the Thayan Enclave’s cutprice magic.

Mages of Procampur, frequently drawn from the ranks of the nobility, are taught by their mentors as much about codes of conduct, etiquette and heraldry as they about magic. Disciplined and dignified people, they are expected to keep up appearances, live in the proper manner and to generally be exemplary citizens of Procampur. They are expected to give expensive gifts to colleagues and peers, make donations to churches and pay an increased amount of taxes. They are neat, polite and courteous men and women, often wearing fine robes and a small, tasteful amount of jewelry.

Although Procampur is free of thieves’ guilds, pirates and other forms of organized crime, it has a burgeoning jewelry and gemcutting trade, and a hefty upper class, so the city is not without its small supply of thieves. They are cat burglars and thief-acrobats, skilled at scaling mansion walls, creeping along the high ledges, and moving silently and invisibly through the night. The thief of Procampur is an expert at picking locks, cracking safes and disabling traps. With so many guards and such a rigid legal system, the thieves very rarely use force or resort to mugging. They seldom wear armour as it slows them down. The thief of Procampur is suave and sophisticated, brave, dashing and a high-spirited swashbuckler; a gentleman/lady thief, and a silver tongued con-artist. When not on their nightly jaunts, they wear extravagant brightly coloured clothes, with frills, capes and feathered caps.

The Procampan adventuring warrior is often from one of the city’s noble or merchant families, and they frequently serve as commanders in the army, navy or guards. The lower classed are not uncommon, usually being those who have joined at the bottom and have risen highly. Being a wealthy city, Procampur equips her warriors well with quality gear (although functional and plainly unadorned), and her soldiers are well paid. Both the noble-born and the aspiring commoner learn the arts of etiquette and diplomacy, and pay close attention to keeping up appearances and maintaining their gear and lifestyle. In all fields, the Procampan warrior is as disciplined as the city he defends.

Forgotten Realms: Forgotten Realms Adventures
Forgotten Realms: The City of Ravens Bluff
Forgotten Realms: Horde Campaign Setting
Forgotten Realms: Pages From The Mages
Forgotten Realms: Wizards And Rogues Of The Realms
Forgotten Realms: Warriors And Priests Of The Realms
Forgotten Realms: Campaign Setting (3rd Edition)
Forgotten Realms: Unapproachable East
Patronage by David Cook, Realms of Valor
Candlekeep Compendium:
A Grand History Of The Realms:
Forgotten Realms Timeline:
WotC Website: Rand’s Travelogue
DM Fido’s story so far
DM BadCatMan's conjecture

This message was last edited by the GM at 13:20, Sat 12 May 2007.

DM BadCatMan
 GM, 712 posts
Tue 8 May 2007
at 13:34

The town of Maerstar is one of the most recent of the Vast, arising as a small village at the point where Helve’s Trail from High Haspur meets the North Road that links Procampur with Sevenecho and the rest of the Vast. With so many travelers and caravans passing that way, a number of horse traders and ranchers soon grew up and into great wealth and prestige, and the town became a centre for horse-breeding.

The horses bred here are highly prized throughout the Inner Sea lands, especially the large, sleek black Maerstar steed, known for the white star upon its brow. This breed originally came from the Maer region of Chessenta, but they only developed the star when bred in Maerstar. The town took its name from these horses.

After horses, Maerstar finds industry in farming the nearby plains and fields of the Vast, though most lands go to the horses. In the nearby arm of the Earthfasts, copper is mined and stone quarried, and the loads carried by Maerstar’s own mining ponies. Situated high in the peaks, these mines are heavily guarded against raids by orcs and goblins and other monsters.

Although Maerstar is not known as a place of great wealth, its people are said to be hard-working and down-to-earth. They are prosperous, but wisely invested. In contrast are the landed nobility who have built their country houses in Maerstar. These include nobles, rich business-owners and retired adventures, mainly from Procampur and Tsurlagol. It is whispered that some, particularly those from Tsurlagol, once had a hand in piracy, or even still do. Unlike in Tsurlagol, where the ‘Free Trade’ is considered legitimate business, they keep their activities quiet for fear of upsetting the neighbours. For the most part, these nobles and merchants pay more attention to their home cities rather than to the town, and indulge themselves in petty luxuries and lording it over others.

The common-folk of Maerstar elect their own mayor and man their own militia, but  these are considered irrelevent: when they care to, the nobles practically govern the town by their own consensus, with money and house-guards to back up their rule. The commoners are left to their own devices, and can usually freely ignore the occasional tyrants.

The town is well-defended, with the mine-guards catching most threats from the mountains at their source, while regular patrols from Procampur and Tsurlagol keep the roads safe. Every country house has its own contingent of guards, some honest mercenaries, others seedy thugs, though they care more for house security than the rest of the town. All in all, the town is guarded and safe, though the guards are generally caught with their attention elsewhere.

In 1358, the Year Of Shadows, the gods walked the Realms and chaos and disaster was everywhere. Nearby Tantras saw a battle between Torm and Bane, while Talos visited destruction upon Tsurlagol, and a dragon attacked Procampur. Many of these merchants and nobles fled to their country-houses in Maerstar, only to find themselves beset by wandering mobs of refugees from Tantras, Calaunt and Mulmaster, some of whom had turned to looting and banditry. Many of the wealthy hid their riches, usually by burying them in the horse paddocks, but not all survived to dig them up again.

A persistent rumour has it that at least two treasure hoards still lie buried somewhere in Maerstar. One is the famed collection of moonstones and pearls belonging to the Procampan merchant Uligker Oloskar. The other is a chest of coins and trade-bars that belonged to Shondarl Stonegiant, a locksmith and famed dance-school instructor. There have been several attempts by treasure hunters to find these over the years, though none have been successful.

Maerstar is also the home of the Moonlit Tower. It is called such because it can only be seen by the light of the full moon, when its rays fall upon a high crag of the Earthfasts northwest of the town. A passing cloud can conceal it. Outside the time of the full moon, the tower cannot be found.

The tower is small and slender, and glows a blue-grey, as if fashioned of solid moonlight. It can be entered: explorers report that its interior consists of seven rooms and a rooftop level, all joined by a spiral stair of floating stone treads, without a rail or visible means of support.

What they differ on is the actual contents of the Tower. Some say that spells behave strangely when cast inside the Tower. Some say it is empty, others bring terrifying tales of monsters: creatures of steel or shadow, beholders, ghosts, things with many mouths, and other much stranger. Sometimes there is treasure, other times nothing, or they release diseases or eggs that hatch into more monsters, or there are statues that change to living monsters when taken out of the tower. There are so many conflicting tales that most sages conclude that the tower contains nothing but madness. It is thought by some sages that the Moonlit Tower travels the planes or other worlds, but those who are inside when it fades away are seldom seen again.

The Moonlit Tower has been there as long as anyone can remember, though references to it go back centuries. Its origins and purpose are unknown. The people of Maerstar don't know, and don't want to have anything to do with it. The occasional plague or monster attack is more than enough proof that it ought to be left alone, and they don't welcome adventurers taking a look. On this, both commoner and noble agree.

This message was last edited by the GM at 09:23, Wed 09 May 2007.

DM BadCatMan
 GM, 715 posts
Wed 9 May 2007
at 09:23
Updated Maerstar, with Moonlit Tower and a bit on local government.