Rise of the Eldrosk
Region - Bamff
A barren wasteland guarded by fierce beasts and full of valuable crystals
The Region of Bamff – Northwestern Lagia
The region of Bamff is an unhospitable barren wasteland. It’s known primarily for two things, The Dwermo Kesh and Kaori crystals. The Bamff wasteland covers most of the Northwestern part of the explored world. There is very little water, and the purity of this water is highly suspect in most cases. The topography is mostly barren packed earth, and huge rock and stone deposits. Very little vegetation grows in the areas that have been explored, and most of that looks to be barely clinging to life. The area at its longest is roughly 1000 miles from east to west and 500 miles north to south. Much of the zone is unexplored, being an extremely dangerous, though lucrative locale. There have been no recorded explorers that have gone farther than 10 miles into the zone and lived to report their findings.
The Kesh are highly intelligent bestial creatures. They move on all fours, but have massive muscular front legs with opposable digits that allow them to move and set ambushes in ways no other quadruped known could. While they could use tools, they have never been seen to actively do so. They have viciously sharp teeth and massive spikes along their back, which they often employee offensively in addition to the natural protection it provides. They are fiendishly tough and though some have been reported as killed no specimen has ever been recovered, alive or dead. Kesh always retreat with their fallen, spiked upon their back.
While their intelligence is common knowledge for those that know of the creatures, and it’s clear they speak to each other in growls, barks, yips and howls, they have never been known to communicate with any other species. Their motivations are unknown, though they are fiercely territorial, and will fight anything that encroaches, even their own kind. They are devious hunters and ambushers and have been known to raid villages in small groups (3-7), though what their intended prize is remains unknown. What they subside on is also unknown, though it does not seem to be primarily flesh based.
The largest pack recorded was 25 strong and the territories are quite large, so would be scavengers are still drawn to the area in hopes of a huge payday and a Kesh free “Kaori run.”
The Kaori crystals themselves do not seem natural. They do not contain the natural variations and imperfections of all other known minerals, they are perfect. Because of this they are prized highly by nobility and there is a black market for them as well in the capital city of Zog. There seems to be a significant use for these crystals, though it’s a tightly kept secret to all but those that trade in them. The nobility often show their status by wearing pieces of the crystal as jewelry. Even an erring made of the material can fetch astronomical prices if made of the more rare colors. Of the known colors the value goes from lowest to highest in this order: Clear (95% of findings are clear) – Yellow – Light Red – Light Green – Light Blue – Dark Red – Orange – Dark Blue – Violet – Dark Green – White.
Just inside the edge of the Bamff region, and the only known settlement of any size inside, is the town of Gnomen (No-Men). This is a town built to feed the crystal trade and is shanty, yet surprisingly full of tech. Zog keeps the town in supply of new weapons and defenses in order to keep the crystal supplies flowing to the capital. Still, only the most hearty, foolish, and/or criminal of people venture to Gnomen. They say you can buy pardons for just about anything with enough Kaori, and that’s because most people that venture in Bamff…die. The famous expression captures the spirit well: “Only the foolish or desperate venture into No-Man’s Land.”
There are five major families that live in Gnomen, three of which are the founding families (of an original 10 families) and have been in Gnomen for four generations. All of these families play integral parts in the survival of the town. From expert crystal hunters, to defensive specialists, to crystal and trade brokering, to entertainment services, all important aspects of the town are covered by one or more of the major families. The town surprisingly has between 900-1500 people in it at any given time, the number fluctuating significantly day to day. Constant trade, high value goods and a healthy dose of death keep this shanty town a place of intrigue and excess that has a strangely strong allure, despite the danger.