World-Building Website by Daniel-André Sørensen

The Personal Website of Daniel A. Sørensen

 
Arcantis is often referred to as the Abandoned Frontier. About 90% of Arcantis is covered in snow and ice, and it is estimated that only 30% or so of that has been explored. Attempts at exploring the remaining lands of Arcantis have been unsuccessful, as a majority of northbound expeditions never return. Finding the pole has been challenging, brutal and so far impossible, but every year new ideas, gear and lives are put to work in an attempt to map the frozen wastes. But overall, most explorers have given up on Arcantis and it holds little interest to nations other than the Iron Kingdoms.

The only habitable areas in Arcantis are near the coasts, and even those lands are considered far too rough and cold compared to normal standards. The only people who have settled in Arcantis are either Norslanders or Ironeers, the latter of which lay claim to a large chunk of it. The Iron Kingdoms can be found at the southern chunk of Arcantis, where the snows and ice aren't as unbearable, and tend to melt away for four months of the year, leaving at least some room for brief agriculture. In fact, Ironeers have perfected growing White Wheat, which grows during the warmer months and freezes over during the colder ones. It takes six months to reach full growth and be ready for harvest, but because it doesn't die or decay when frozen, it simply just waits to grow again when the warmth arrives.

But Arcantis' greatest treasure lies not in its peculiar flora, but in its stones. Deep under the Arcantis ground and mountains, one finds a native type of coal, simply known as Arcantian Coal, that, when used as fuel, can significantly increase the heat of fire and lasts for thrice the duration of regular coal. Ironeers mine this coal as it is one of the most valuable minerals in the northern hemisphere, and is an important ingredient to making Steamforged Steel. The largest and richest veins of Arcantian Coal are found further north, nearer the undiscovered crown of the world, which is another reason why Ironeers willingly and often forcibly try to chart and claim the frozen wastes.

Arcantis is also where one finds Glacium, which is known as the hardest metal discovered thus far. It is often mistaken for ice, as its appearance is that of glittering, blueish ice, almost crystal-like. It is found in abundance far to the north, but due to the inhospitable conditions it is difficult to mine it in larger quantities.

It is without doubt that Arcantis is home to the most hostile environment in all of Pandora. When it's not the crags and deep crevices that claim lives, it's the great Arcantian Bear, which is gargantuan compared to other white bears. So far only the Arcantian Bear is able to survive in Arcantis seemingly without issue, although those who study them are baffled as to what they feed upon, when it isn't humans. As if these extremely savage, massive bears weren't dangerous enough, the weather in Arcantis can be highly lethal. Flash-freeze winds and hail that is more reminiscent of sizable needles able to penetrate hard metal occur frequently and almost without warning.

It is luckily far less likely to arise such weather the further south one remains, but the north, where all the greatest riches of Arcantis lie, one will need tough hide, iron resolve and inhuman courage to survive.