The Firseid Sandbox
The Arashan Provinces are the major power in the southeastern area of Letania on the northern side of the Arashan Sea, with its namesake city, Arasha, loacated at the Mouth of Letania. Petros keep is the farthest western holding, and the towns of Scalati, Pescata, and Eos line the eastern coast of the continent along the Windback Mountains. Pallanda is an Arashan settlement on Frigea, as is the Northern Lighthouse Trading Post. The above ground portion of the Dwarven city of Ironcast on Wallooki was also, long ago, an Arashan settlement.
Primarily human (as high as 75%), but census data is difficult to gather due to the transitory nature of many Arashan citizens. Wallookian Dwarves have a community in the capital at Arasha (mostly employees of the Wallookian Mining Authority; this is the only large community of them on Letania), and outcast elves and their half-elf offspring are also known large communities.
Terrain and climate
Arasha’s climate is dry, with a brief wet season in the winter. Eastern coastal towns are often shrouded in mist in the early morning, which evaporates quickly. Summers are typically hot, but winters are quite mild, with freezing temperatures rare.
History, Reputation, Politics, and Society
Arasha is the major sea-faring power in Firseid, with no serious rival to their domination of the oceans.
The Arashan Provinces are allied with the Middle Kingdom. In the Middle Kingdom—Northern Alliance war, they remained officially neutral, but favored the Middle Kingdom in trade deals. Although not officially at war with Harrtlund, sea skirmishes and altercations in seaside villages against Harrtlander raiding parties are common.
Arashan society also has a strong community of well-respected merchants, bards, and diplomats. The gift of gab is perhaps the most prized trait in Arashan society. Their bards are particularly famous and many an Arashan has been found in the king’s court of another nation. Arashans are also known for their sense of humor.
The darker side to Arashan society has a tradition of piracy as a career choice for the young and organized crime syndicates wielding considerable influence in cities and especially towns in the countryside.
Arashans gain a +1 on Appraise and Sense Motive checks.
The Arashan’s exploratory tendencies led to them trading with coastal villages and cities going back millennia. Their domination of sea trade also means that tariffs on goods passing through their territory fill Arashan coffers.
Arashans are credited with opening up the sea trade lanes to Wallooki and Frigea centuries ago. Ice and some more exotic materials are imported from the Dragon’s Breath Ice Floe. But the Dwarven mining operations on Wallooki, and the Arashan fleets that are hired to protect the shipping lanes to and from the continent, are perhaps the greatest source of Arshashan wealth.
Arasha’s major export in recent centuries has been oceanstone, mined off the eastern coast.
A long-standing weakness of Arasha has been its agricultural output. The soil in the surrounding countryside along the eastern coast is poor, the climate is dry, and inland rocky foothills of the Windback Mountains and salt water lowlands mean that Arasha often must import foot from its neighbors. However, they are enthusiastic consumers of seafood, which is plentiful.
All natives of Arasha are proficient with the rapier and throwing knife.
On the sea, the Arashan invention of cannons has given them an almost unprecedented advantage in conventional sea battles. They maintain a powerful standing navy of large but maneuverable and fast ships. Baring their enemies having significant magic backup or a great numerical advantage, an Arashan flotilla is a true force to be reckoned with.
On land, Arasha favors highly mobile light infantry, guerrilla warfare, and close-range missile troops (e.g. short bows and throwing knives). A well-trained Arashan militia can keep the enemy on the run for days, exhausting them and creating heavy casualties with ambushes and hit-and-run tactics. They excel in urban environments. The best ground troops are often picked from the police force of Arasha. A great amount of attention is given to roguish skills in their homelife, and these tendencies carry over into their military thinking and training.
Arasha does not, however, have a large standing army, and this weakness has led to their hiring of mercenary troops from Freiburg and further afield to perform guard duties.
Arcane magic in Arashan society among humans is quite rare, but illusion spells are heavily favored by the small number who study the magical arts. There are no wizard schools of note, and “witchcraft” is often banned in smaller communities in the countryside. This attitude may be changing, however, as evocation magic support becomes more and more common for oceanstone mining operations. Arashans do draw a distinction between casting magic spells and using magic items (usually acquired in trades), however, so magical weapons are about as common as anywhere else.
Clerical magic is viewed differently. Clerics use their powers openly and often. The Hospital in Arasha is known to employ clerics for magical healing, and the bishop of the Great Cathedral is often a cleric of extreme magical prowess.
Arashans also seem to look the other way when bardic magic is used, perhaps because bardic magic can occasionally be mistaken for clerical magic.
Arashans typically view things as “whatever works.” They were the first adopters of gnomish black powder, which is used on their ships’ cannons. Small firearms, however, are still uncommon, and reluctant to be adopted by a military that values speed and especially silence in its tactics. Complex machinery is constructed for mining, refinement, and construction alike.