Gara Campaign Setting
Capital: Yeahk Capa (41,630)
Notable Settlements: Yeahk Shiro (23,100), Yeahk Feya (8,650)
Ruler: Admiral Nidge
Government: Tribal shamen (islands); individual captains (ships).
Religion: agnostic (city dwellers); ancestor worship (rural); Fotinar (sailors).
Few can argue that the Goblin Isles are the world’s foremost maritime power. Their warships can be seen in every harbor, and patrol all the shipping lanes. Most nations have long ago abandoned the pursuit of ocean exploration and instead face the frontier as the ultimate adventure. This is not so for the Goblin Isles. They have taken it upon themselves to map the coasts and find new lands.
After the Dwarvo-Gobbley War ended, the few remaining sane goblins regrouped in two locations. The first, and largest of these gatherings was Yeahk Thraga, the only untouched city left standing in the one-time Goblin Kingdom. The other gathering of survivors was in Yeahk Sha, a hamlet swollen to city size by refugees and elven allies.
Barely a decade after the war ended, the Gotkan River flooded, roaring through the riverside capital and destroying all but the stoutest of buildings; the final nail in the coffin of the would-be kingdom. To escape the horrors of drowning, the goblin people climbed into anything that would float. These survivors were carried out into the sea and found themselves days later washing up on the banks of what is now the main body of the Goblin Isles. Here they settled, and in time rebuilt some semblance of civilization.
The ocean captains returning to Yeahk Thraga found it a ruin, and eventually found the refugees. They began to ferry goblins to the islands from any shoreline settlement they encountered, including Yeahk Sha, and declared the Goblin Isles their new home.
The goblin people believe the ocean saved their race from extinction and gave them purpose. Because of this belief, all goblins are required to spend two years at sea before they can be considered adults. Many of them remain in the navy their whole lives, and as a result the naval hierarchy is respected a great deal more than the ancestor-worshipping shamanic caste who consider themselves the true government of the isles.
At sea, each ship captain speaks with the authority of the gods on his vessel. The only person a ship captain bows to is the admiral of the Gobbley Navy. Admiral Nidge, captain of the warship Derfkalla, flagship of the gobbley fleet, is a grizzled veteran sailor who claims to have sailed south all the way around the frontier and returned to Yeahk Capa from the north. Several goblin sailors boast of being on his crew at the time of this great voyage, but most accounts of the exploit differ wildly in terms of distance, dangers and time.
Any goblin with the money and skill may own his own ship and call himself a captain, but those who wish to become naval captains must remain at sea on a navy vessel for no less than five years and must be given a commendation by that ship’s captain or the admiral himself. In this later case, navy captains proudly display the admiral’s commendation in their quarters and are often given command of a flotilla of additional escort ships.
Capa-Shiro: The main landmass of the Goblin Isles. Capa-Shiro is home to the vast majority of the goblin people. The sprawling capital is one of the few places in the Isles where foreign vessels are welcome to dock and life in the port city closely resembles that of any metropolis. Yeahk Shiro, on the northern end of the island is home to one of the nation’s largest exports: the choral and pearl farms. In contrast, the rural southern regions of the island are populated by those goblin families that have forsaken the sea and are devout followers of the shamanic would-be government. At first glance, Yeahk Derfa looks to be a thriving city built in the style of the ancient Goblin Kingdom. However, upon closer inspection, the city is deliberately run-down and in ill-repair so the inhabitants may never forget the loss of their mainland homes and fuel their generations-old hatred of the dwarves.
Feya Isle: The fey creatures who were once the staunchest of goblin allies now call this island their home. Like the goblins, the faeries of the Gotkan Forest were driven into the sea by the dwarven advance. A small community of goblins and elves has found its way to the southern shore of this otherwise wild paradise and have reestablished peaceful contact with their one-time allies. The materials to built Yeahk Feya and the food the inhabitants eat both have to be brought to the island, as the fey creatures refuse to allow even a single tree in their new home to be harmed. As a result, the local flora and fauna grow very large and live without fear of their neighbors. Those who disregard this peace rarely live to regret it.