The Mistwick Marshes was once under the dominion of the Isuro Elvish Kingdom with its capital in Osonoris. For centuries the region capitalized on its natural complex of rivers and tributaries, along with numerous ports on the coast to become a vibrant trading hub with the rest of the world. Their civilization thrived with cities and towns that were simultaneously cosmopolitan and deeply connected to nature. In stark contrast to its present state, Mistwick was a rather idyllic and verdant wetland during the Isuro reign.
All that changed hundreds of years ago as tension with the Adessy Dominion began to mount. This kingdom to the northeast was always jealous of Isuro success and powerful factions within stoked racial animosities among its predominantly human population. When a terrible drought riddled the Adessy cities with famine and pestilence, they began to sanction warring parties to plunder the Isuro frontier. The war that ensued raged for centuries with both sides suffering incalculable loses. Perhaps the greatest loss was to the Isuro way of life – the cosmopolitan embrace of racial diversity, once a staple of Isuro culture, was abandoned under this mounting threat to their existence. Although the Adessy had a history of breeding and selling half-elf slaves around the world, the Isuro soon adopted the practice as a means of bolstering their depleted military. It was all for naught – after a long, terrible siege, Osonoris fell and the marsh changed forever.
With the fall of the Isuro and the horrible sins they committed to survive the invasion, the gods saw fit to curse this land. The sun disappeared behind the clouds, cold winds blew in, and the rains began. The Adessy abandoned the heart of Mistwick to the elements. What remains are sparsely populated villages and towns forged by rugged frontier folk seeking refuge from the tyranny of far of rulers, age-old dogmas, or just a fresh start where old grudges and family names have no meaning. Many find joy in the raw freedom and boundless opportunity of the swamp – while others learn the hard way that such freedoms can be a double-edged sword that is thrust in the bellies of the weak. Others are lured by tales of treasure and knowledge left behind in the Isuro ruins despite rumors of ferocious beasts, insidious witches, Isuro undead, and all manner of cursed magic that has consumed much of the region.
Also present in the Marsh are reclusive, nomadic tribes of half-elves who trace their lineage back to the Slave revolts during the twilight of the Isuro Empire. The Jademi are comprised of various clans which are understandably quite distrustful of both humans and elves. While they will engage in trade with frontier settlements and some individuals opt to live among these outsiders, the vast majority are extremely insular. They are rumored to be protected by an unnatural magic and will die before revealing the location of their camps.
Finally, in the relative lawlessness of the Mistwick Marshes, the seas became fertile ground for unscrupulous pirates. After years of internal fighting for dominance, three rival gangs (“The Unseen”, “The Dark Tide”, and “The Black Veil”) were unified by a charismatic leader as the Plundering Horde. They are rumored to have constructed a floating island salvaged from captured ships that serves as their headquarters somewhere off the western coast of Mistwick. While little is known about the inner workings of their organization, their penchant for ruthlessness and murderous efficacy has quickly become legendary.