Scales of War
Area Around Overlook
The Stonehome Mountains lie past the western border of the Elsir Vale. They are also where Overlook and its fortress Bordrin’s Watch are located. In ancient times Overlook served as the center of commerce in the Vale, and while it no longer holds as much power as it once did, Overlook remains a major trade hub in the region.
Overlook is one of the most interesting features of the Stonehome Mountains, but it isn’t the only one. Ruins of the old dwarven kingdom dot the peaks for hundreds of miles to the north and south, while old caves lead to tunnels worming through the rock. Closest to the Overlook, though, the land is safer and is home to numerous villages and other places of interest.
Major Settlement and Defense
- Bordrin’s Watch – Bordrin’s Watch is a dwarven fortress that was erected ages ago at the height of dwarven power in the Elsir Vale. Today it still serves as a strong line of defense against the orcs, goblinoids, and other foul creatures that inhabit the barren wastes west of the Stonehome Mountains.
Armistice – Purported to be the site of victory of the giants and orcs, here the freed dwarves signed a compact of peace that would bind them into one nation. Now the kingdom is no more, so Armistice is just a relic of the past filled with old codgers who think back on better days.
Feud – Two dwarf families dominate this tiny hamlet and, as their name indicated, they are prone to violence. The only thing they can’t stand more than one another is outsiders.
Hope – Another speck of a town, Hope appeared after prospectors found a vein of silver nearby. Once the vein played out, most of the miners moved north to Armistice, but a few stubborn folk live here still, working the mines in search of precious metals. Travelers have reported that something is not right with these people and there’s a feeling that the citizens of Hope are hiding something sinister.
Lantern – A minuscule settlement of just fifty souls, Lantern is little more than a logging camp.
Myler’s Stone – This town was once a large city, but years of decay, disease, and tragedy reduced the place to a handful of desperate people eking out an existence in the ruins of the past.
Old Den – A trade depot used by rangers and elves alike, this site is a cluster of wooden buildings surrounded by a palisade.
Sodden – A small town at the headwaters of the Elsir River, this is a quaint community of farmers and fisherfolk. They work well with the elves, which is perhaps the only thing that stops the elves from erasing Lantern altogether.
Elsir River – The headwaters of the Elsir River flow in a series of waterfalls that drain the mountains back into the valley to the east. West of Sodden the river is too rough and hides too many rocks for boats to navigate, though from Sodden, one can travel across the valley, going as far as Brindol.
The Westdeep – This dense forest grows in the narrow depression between the Stonehome and Wyrmsmoke Mountains. A dangerous place, several tribes of xenophobic elves live here, and they do not take kindly to trespassers. Conflict between the loggers at Lantern and the elves has come close to open war, and it’s known that if the elves attack, the dwarves will be forced to respond.
Other Points of Interest
Shackles – Overlook’s sister, Shackles was a powerful city and was the former capital of the fallen dwarven kingdom. It fell nearly two centuries ago when the orcs sacked it before the kingdom could respond.
Monastery of the Sundered Chain – About eighteen miles southwest of Overlook stands the old Monastery of the Sundered Chain. Raised to house an order of holy warriors in service to Moradin, the templars have largely withdrawn from Overlook, seeing the city as having lost its identity. Even though the relationship is strained, the monastery and the city remain allies.
The Vents – Natural fissures vent steam from a superheated underground lake. The tunnels are dangerous since they are also choked with foul monsters of the Underdark, dangerous flora, and vicious fauna.