Shadows of Nerath
The Nentir Vale is composed of isolated pockets of civilization surrounded by dark areas of untamed wild. The small communities and even largest cities’ inhabitants are mostly cut off from the world outside their walls. Travel between cities and villages is dangerous, and most people are ignorant about the rest of the world aside from rumor. Bandits, vicious humanoids, and monsters of all kinds inhabit the darkness between settled areas, and those who wish to venture out do so at their own risk. Fallcrest lies near the middle of the broad borderland region known as the Nentir Vale. The vale is now mostly empty, with a handful of living villages and towns scattered over this wide area. Abandoned farmsteads, ruined manors, and broken keeps litter the countryside. Bandits, wild animals, and monsters roam freely throughout the vale, threatening anyone who fares more than few miles away from one of the surviving settlements. Travel along the roads or river is usually safe—usually. But every now and then, travelers come to bad ends between towns. The Nentir Vale is a northern land, but it sees relatively little snow—winters are windy and bitterly cold. The Nentir river is too big to freeze except for a few weeks in the coldest part of the year. Summers are cool and mild.
The world’s humans are scattered and divided, engaged in a losing battle against the darkening world and their own ignorance. It wasn’t always so. Once, the splendor of Nerath lit the world with its culture and accomplishments. It united races and governed prosperously. Nerathi architects raised marvels of engineering its artists composed works capturing the imagination; and its philosophy formed the foundation of humanity’s ideologies. Yet none of these feats could save Nerath from destruction. Humans today are the inheritors of this legacy, though few of them realize what their ancestors lost with the empire’s fall. Although Nerath now means little more than ancient legends in the shadows of crumbling ruins, every person of every race alive in the world today shares this common thread to their history—that once, Nerath ruled, and the world was a better a place. The boundaries of the ancient empire of Nerath are marked by the rugged Stonemarch to the north, the majestic Dawnforge Mountains to the east, the swamp-filled ruins of Vardar to the south, the Ironwall Mountains and the forested Barony of Therund to the west. Only ruins and small, isolated settlements now dot the once-populous area. To the southeast, lie lands claimed by both the tieflings of Bael Turath and the dragonborn of Arkhosia.
Adventurers come to the Nentir Vale in search of ancient forgotten riches in crumbling ruins hoping to carve out a place in the history books of scholars. It is time for you to write your legacy.