The Sleep of Reason Produces Monsters
Eberron at a Glance
The medieval world of Eberron is a place of magic and monsters, where arcane energy infuses the landscape and greatly influences society and industry. Thanks to a mastery of the arcane arts, the great cities of the continent of Khorvaire contain skyscraping castles, elemental-powered coaches and carriages, and all manner of enchanted conveniences. Magic is industry across the face of Eberron, the innovative spark that propels society forward.
The advances and conveniences made possible by magic augment the trappings of a medieval fantasy world. Magic and the arcane arts allow for effects that in some ways mimic technological marvels that didn’t appear in our world until the 1800s. Something resembling a magical telegraph provides communication between two locations. An arcane analog of the railroad connects defined routes among the more civilized regions of the world. Magic exists to accomplish tasks otherwise impossible—if you can find the right spell wielder and you have enough gold to pay for the privilege.
As the campaign begins, the world of Eberron is emerging from a long and devastating war. The nations of the continent of Khorvaire were once part of a great kingdom of legend, the mighty kingdom of Galifar. When King Jarot died, his five heirs, each in command of one of the Five Nations that comprised the kingdom, refused to bow to tradition. Instead of allowing the eldest scion to take the crown, the siblings rallied their vassals and individually vied to take control of the kingdom. Over time, this decades long conflict became known as the Last War, for everyone imagined that when it finally ended, the taste for bloodshed and battle would be wiped from the face of Khorvaire.
The Last War continued for more than a century, with each of the Five Nations alternately fighting against or alongside one or more of the others as animosities and alliances shifted like the wind in the Shargon Straits. In time, other nations formed as deals were made and opportunities presented themselves. After 102 years of fighting, the leaders of the recognized nations of Khorvaire (which now numbered twelve) met at the ancient capital of Galifar to draft a peace. With the signing of the Treaty of Thronehold, the Last War came to an end.
Today, the nations of Khorvaire seek to rebuild and prosper as the new peace spreads across the land. While technically at peace, the nations continue to vie for economic and political supremacy. Minor skirmishes break out every so often, especially in the more remote sections of the continent and on the most hotly contested borders. Espionage and sabotage are the preferred method of diplomacy, since the nations engage in trade and discussion in public while working intrigues and double-crosses in the shadows.