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Population: 1,837,284

In Bodenwald, the Astromantic Society was founded, and the city still serves as its headquarters. Thus, Bodenwald serves as the center of most activities involving the exploration and colonization of other planets, and many people who hope to start over on a new world come here. The city has become rich by trading exotic goods and minerals from the colonies, and its zoological gardens, which feature many creatures from other worlds, attract many scholars.

Bodenwald is one of the few Flannish cities with a surviving aristocracy, and despite the fact that an elected parliament governs the city, the eccentric and wildly popular King Maximilian III can certainly influence politics when he puts his mind to it. He has been an enthusiastic supporter of the Astromantic Society, and the riches its efforts bring to the city have reflected well on him as well.

Life in Bodenwald


Life and Society


Government and Politics

Groups and Organisations


Important NPCs


Bodenwald lies within an ancient basin which was formed when a meteorite fell down to Rothea millions of years ago, which left the region flat when compared to the hills and mountains of the rest of the protectorate. This also resulted in splinters of Meteoric Iron scattered around the area, which is anathema to the fey - even today, the fey will not go near certain spots in the city-state. Later on several ice ages caused glaciers to cover their land, scattering moraine hills across the basin and eroding the crater rim.

The earliest inhabitants of the region seem to have been goblins of the Goblin Mound Builder culture which were slowly displaced by human tribes migrating into the area from the south. Both left their marks - numerous Goblin Mounds are scattered through the area (although their original tunnels have long since collapsed and new tunnels have been dug by later inhabitants) while numerous ancient human burial sites have been uncovered (especially during the current construction rush). When the Atalan Empire arrived, the basin became the site of several Atalan fortresses and major settlements as well as numerous smaller estates, since (then as now) the basin sits at the northern terminus through the Siebenbund mountains, causing the settlements to become important supply outposts and centers of trade. Findings of old Atalan coins and other items are common to this day.

After the fall of the Atalan Empire much of the region reverted to lawless wilderness, and the only outposts of civilization were assorted abbeys and monasteries of various faiths who kept some farming communities going and the Salt Route open - the latter was an important trade route for salt, which was used to drive the hordes of ghosts away which had appeared in the wake of the Atalan collapse (as the old funeral rites were no longer absorbed). Even as the city of Bodenwald was founded and eventually became the capital of the kingdom of Gelgen, the abbeys remained the major landowners in the region until after the Liberation War.

During the Liberation War, Gelgen held out the longest among the Flannish Kingdoms as it had been the least ravaged by the troops of Negroth the Doombringer and its rugged terrain which conferred considerable advantages to the defenders. Even so, the kingdom's forces were gradually pushed back, and the destruction of Praxus and the loss of Holzau (the later Grüngarten) cost it dearly, though the Liberation Army suffered at Praxus just as much and had many of their supply routes severed when Holzau fell to Avareen in turn. Eventually, the war ran out of steam and a peace treaty was agreed to under the terms that the King would give up claim to the throne of Gelgen and call himself the King of Bodenwald in the future, and establish a parliament voted into office by the non-noble citizens (i.e. property-owners) of Bodenwald) as a check on his power.

In the aftermath the Kingdom struggled with massive war debts. In order to reduce these debts to a manageable level the King took the highly controversial step of confiscating all land owned by the various temples excepting actual temple buildings. As a compensation and to give the temples a new source of income, the King granted them the permanent privilege of collecting a government-collected "temple tax" from all registered members of a particular religion proportional to the residents' other taxes paid to the government. The temples would get access to the lists of government-registered members of their faith, and be quick to shame (or even deny services to) those worshipers who refused to register.

Eventually, the Kingdom returned to prosperity, as its forested hills and mountains were rich in resources and the most important Flannish trade routes to the Siebenbund and the Parginian Rim pass through it, making the city a major railway hub. In recent decades the King's sponsorship of the Astromantic Society has also paid off - thanks to off-world exploration and colonization, and the new trade goods it brings, Bodenwald has become among the most prosperous of the Flannish Cities, and the King's popularity and power seems assured.

Adventure Ideas

Designer's Notes & Resources

Culturally, the city can be compared to Munich, especially during the time when Bavaria was still a kingdom in its own right.


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