I thought I’d try something different for today’s post and present a bit of geo-political backstory for Blackwood Empire. This is all still very early in development and subject to change of course, but I figure it might be of interest to my fellow world builders out there, as well as provide context for some of the stories I’ll be writing. Constructive feedback is welcome.
Crowndon, AKA The Northern Colonial Empire-
Crowndon is the oldest Empire of the Imperial Triumvirate. Once a land of scattered rural communities, the discovery of mineral rich land in the northern reaches led to rapid wealth and expansion. At the time of the Blackwood Empire, it is highly industrialized and militaristic, boasting the largest Navy in the world.
The history of how the Northern Empire came to be is long and bloody, and it is a history that is still vividly remembered at the time of Blackwood Empire. After five hundred years of bloody feuds led by Warlords of assorted malevolence, the provinces of the Northern Reach (more commonly known as the Demon’s Crown) coalesced into the nation of Old Crowndon, ruled by a brilliant general named Gideon Caldebek McShea, who declared himself king.
Under the McShea line, the southern provinces were invaded. Many of these provinces fell quickly, but four in particular proved particularly troublesome. Those closest to the border of what is now the modern day Monteddorian Empire to the south had been at war with those nations for hundreds of years, and were battle hardened and possessed resources of their own. These four nations, known as the Alliance of the Southern Sea, stopped the rapid advance of Old Crowndon.
The fourth Monarch of the McShea line recognized the strength of this Alliance, and rather than fight a losing war with them, extended an offer of peace, as well as aid in the battle against the newly forming Southern Empire.
This surge of support helped stem the invasion, and the Monteddorians surrendered and ceased their northward expansion. Old Crowndon and the Alliance of the Southern Sea entered into a co-operative relationship, and the Crowndonian Empire was formed.
Together, these five nations have established the wealthiest Empire in the Triumvirate. At the time of Blackwood Empire, Crowndon is awash in industry, with major cities expanding rapidly outward. Recently, the capitals of Walsh and Toring, two of the Alliance nations, merged into the beginnings of the world’s first megalopolis, the advent of which has been described by NorEastern Empire’s Sir Rigel Rinkenbach as ‘worrisome’.
The discovery of the Blackwood grove in Monteddor and a stable trade relationship with the Southern Empire has only increased Crowndon’s wealth and influence. In the last two hundred years, Crowndon has begun what is diplomatically referred to as ‘aggressive expansion’ on the great western continent known as the Newlands, a large landmass on the other side of the Barrier Ocean. This has sparked new tensions with Monteddor, which has begun exploring the southern regions of the Newlands.
The chief exports of Crowndon are resources…namely steel, copper, lumber, and silver. Before the advent of Blackwood, whaling flourished in the Northern Reach. Foodstuffs are comprised mainly of salt, fish, pork and sheep, as well as various alcoholic beverages. Textiles are comprised mainly of parchment and wool.
The people of Crowndon are often characterized as stern and focused (a.k.a. humorless and not very fun to be around). They have mostly conservative views and live highly structured lives built on a rigid work ethic.
Religious views in Crowndon are regarded as something of an odd duck. While most citizens of Crowndon believe in a single Creator, their relationship with that Creator is largely an antagonistic one. They believe that the world is an obstacle to be overcome, not to be revered, and that the Creator is an ideal to be equal to or surpassed, not feared.
The government of Crowndon is steeped in Oligarchy, centered around a council representing each of the five nations. This council is made up of industrialists and Military leaders. There is a small theological presence as well, but its influence has waned in the last two centuries.
Noteworthy characters from Crowndon include: Captain Roderick Beauchamp LaPierre, Klaus Klaudhopper, and Eli Garrety.