Hold of Belkzen
|Hold of Belkzen|
|Hersker||Orc champions and clan leaders|
|Styreform||Nonstandard (tribal hordes)|
|Religioner||Lamashtu, Rovagug, Zon-Kuthon|
When the dwarves broke free from the Darklands, they pushed the orcs before them, and once they reached the surface, they tried to exterminate their ancient enemies for all time. The orcs fell back into the mountains, but led by a warlord named Belkzen, they finally turned the tide and overran a dwarven Sky Citadel. From within its walls, they held the dwarves back and even launched counterattacks. Bruised and bleeding, the dwarves withdrew, and the Hold of Belkzen was born, drawing orcs from across Avistan to unite under a single tattered banner.
Belkzen sits high in a large, jagged, and isolated valley subject to tremendous yearly floods as the snowpack in the mountains above melts. Mammoths, saber-tooth tigers, and other megafauna call the valley home, and wander where they will. Sites of incredible power and ancient age, such as the Cenotaph of the Whispering Tyrant and the Brimstone Haruspex, home of oracular orc priests, dot the harsh landscape as well, drawing adventurers seeking their secrets and would-be warlords hoping to control them.
The many tribes of the Hold of Belkzen live in peace with one another during the plentiful rainy season, but when the dry seasons begin, they fall naturally into savage competition again. The land’s resources are too meager for them to unite for long under a single leader. A few human compounds, such as Trunau, exist here as well, standing against the enemies who throw themselves against their walls.