In the far northeastern reaches of Avistan lies the harsh and unforgiving nation of Brevoy. The winters are long and deadly, forcing the common folk to scratch out a meager existence while the lords of the land plot in their keeps and strongholds, eyeing their neighbor’s lands with envy. The people of Brevoy are a proud lot, known throughout Golarion for producing strong warriors, regal nobles, and clever rogues. Yet Brevoy is a fractured nation as its two regions, Issia and Rostland, have long held one another in contempt.
Both Issia and Rostland were independent nations until a little over two hundred years ago when Choral the Conqueror united the two nations under threat of annihilation. Choral and his descendants in House Rogarvia were able to maintain a fragile peace between the regions with an iron fist. That all changed a decade ago though when every member of House Rogarvia vanished in the middle of the night. On the same night, the city of Skywatch, built around an ancient observatory, sealed its doors to the outside and nobody appears to have entered or left the city since. Many have speculated as to the cause of the disappearance, and the sealing of the city, but to date, no consensus has been reached. Some claim that the Old Gods are punishing them for abandoning their teachings and embracing the emerging technologies of an industrial age. Others believe that Choral made a pact with a demon lord to gain power and that now, the bill has come due.
Regardless of the cause, it is clear that the various noble houses were not expecting it. Chaos reigned for nearly a year, until the conniving leaders of Issia’s House Surtova seized power. Brevoy is now plagued by a complex political landscape full of secret alliances, provincial loyalties, and nefarious plots. Civil war seems inevitable in these troubled times.
The swordlords of Rostland fear the coming war for Rostland is smaller than Issia, has fewer armies, and its rolling hills and grasslands offer little in the way of natural defense. Even worse for Rostland, its southern border lies along a stretch of wilderness infested with bandits and monsters. Should Brevoy fall into civil war, it won’t be long before the violent, opportunistic vultures move to take advantage of Rostland’s problems.
This wilderness area is known as the Stolen Lands, lying between the River Kingdoms to the south and Brevoy to the north. This region is so named for Rostland has long viewed this region as “stolen” from them by bandits and monsters. Over the centuries, numerous attempts have been made to settle the Stolen Lands, but the nearly 35,000 square miles of wilderness has resisted every attempt to civilize it.
Rumors now persist that as tensions mount in Brevoy, some of Rostland’s swordlords are hoping to send groups of adventurers into the region in order to secure Rostland’s southern border in the event of a war with Issia. If true, it would be both a bold and brilliant move, for if Rostland were to turn its own resources to the task, it would not only weaken its defenses against the north, but the blatant power grab would force Issia’s hand. Free agents on the other hand could create new allies without sacrificing Rostland’s power in Brevoy. Yet as with most complex and brilliant plans, there are plenty of opportunities for disaster.