The Kantian Lowlands
The Kantian Lowlands are a vast plains between the northeastern highlands and the western reaches of the continent. They are bordered by the Southron Wastes, obviously in the south, a vast difficult mountain range in the west, a dense forest in the north and the highlands in the east.
The climate is temperate with both mild winters and warm, comfortable summers and not much in the way of a Spring or Autumn. There is little in the way of rain in the central lowlands but rivers and lakes are abundant, making irrigation simple. This lends to a long growing season and an easy agrarian life for most of the inhabitants.
The lowlands are dominated mostly by human city states and confederations of smaller cities. Borders are ancient and agreed on mostly by tradition. They were set down by a larger unified nation that collapsed long ago and is remembered only in legend and stubbornly clung to customs.
Two small kingdoms of elves have carved out a place for themselves among these human kingdoms. The poor Rasheen have their lands in the southeast and trade much with the highand peoples. The most sophisticated and wealthy Yvinti Caliphate has a large city in the central lowlands. Elves are otherwise common inhabitants of most city states and in most places do not suffer much if any social stigma.
Gnomes also have a place inside lowland culture though they do not have a home of their own. Many of the graceful fey folk can be found as land holders outside cities. They find city life distasteful and are commonly mistaken for elves. Their extremely long lifespans cause them to live apart due to prejudice.
Most of the city states are ruled by a prince. In rare instances the ruler of an area might refer to themselves as a king or queen. It is not always the case that this position is hereditary. Some cities do have dynastic princes, others have free elections, some are selected by trade guilds, others are chosen from the military and still others have other merit based ways of choosing their leaders. The Rasheen are ruled by a hereditary chief, and the Yvinti have a Caliph that is presumably a hereditary position though the first Caliph still sits on the throne and has no heirs.
Each human city state also more or less has their own system of governance and different laws, though these laws all share a common origin. This common origin makes it rare for a traveler from one place to another to get in trouble with the law over drastically different regulations, though taxes, trade rules and whether one can be armed or not can be maddening for travelling adventurers. The Adventurer’s Guild and the Merchant’s League both provide services to help alleviate this problem for their members.
Commerce between city states is complicated and not for the faint of heart. As such only large caravans range between more than two or three cities as currency exchange alone can be maddening.
The lowlands are famous for the large number of powerful sorcerers that exist in the population. Every city has a significant group of them either as part of their defense force, or in a school or guild. Some have all three. They’ve developed methods of keeping these powerful men and women in check and typically aren’t intimidated when powerful magic users show up.