Points of Interest:
The Cindercone - local fisherman report that a new island has risen in the center of Lake Fum. Supposedly the new island is crescent shaped with copious fog billowing from the central bay. Reports also claim to have seen the unquiet dead wandering the island, a glowing green castle, and a mysterious winged beast. Grizzled fisher folk now avoid the area, claiming the fogs can be deadly to men and fish, and that breathing the foul air can make men see illusions.
Ulfsar Crossing Kylar (also called Ulfsar Crossing) - the last real settlement in the north, Ulfsar is a shadow of what it once was. The Ulfsar Legion and about a quarter of the Highlander population left two years ago, departing for new lands on the western frontier. Many buildings on the edge of town are abandoned ruins. The main inn, a few farms, and the old Dwarven bridge are the major features. A handful of fishing boats still ply the lakes and rivers. There has not been a caravan this year. (Will the PCs start here?)
Shalon - once the last great town of Tantathians, no contact has been made with Shalon in two years.
Fort Votan - there has been talk that this fort is held by a Free Company called the White Stags, guarding Aruthien convicts who are building a wall from the mountains to the sea.
Fort Eth - This tower is rumored to have vanished completely.
Dio - Once a great hunting lodge the contained many trophies, including magic creatures and exotic weapons.
Char - the military burned the fortress upon their departure, and no one knows why.
Fort Pale - the last caravan claimed that Fort Pale has become a bandit stronghold.
Fort Rodez - the burned shell of the fort is now home to a creature which killed six mercenaries the night the last caravan camped nearby.
Fort Greco - an independent freehold of the Dark Dirks Free Company.
Fort Sajat - some caravaners report the old fort completely overgrown with jungle vines, others that it was surrounded by dense fog, but most agree they never saw Fort Sajat at all.
Fort Padar - an elderly wizard resided here and refused to be evacuated. Some rumors refer to him as senile and befuddled, others claim he dabbles with dark powers.
Fort Alhandro - No word has been had from this fort since the military evacuated two years ago; it is thought to be deserted.
Moden - said to be mostly under water after the Upheaval.
Dark Wood - the last soldiers from this region reported that some shattered elements of the Kami armies have made their home here.
Population - Two years ago (I need to know the current date) the Aruthien army systematically abandoned all their forts in the region and pulled back to Tir Arnoth. All the 'Fort' towns, including Dio, Moden, and Char were abandoned by regular garrisons and everyone who wished to leave was brought out of the March via wagon train. Last year, only one caravan made the journey south from Aruthien to Barloz and returned; the mercenary Free Company they had retained for protection reported heavy casualties and no other trips were attempted. Caravan trade has recently become less profitable due to expanded sea trade in the Gulf of Ordred.
The Upheaval - at midwinter, the entire March was shaken by a series of great tremors, called the Upheaval. Fire was said to appear on the water of Lake Fum, and the whole countryside is rumored to have been broken and twisted by the Upheaval. A number of fortresses and structures in the region partially or wholly collapsed during the Upheaval. In some areas, stories are told of subterranean dungeons and other realms being opened to the surface.
Wildlife - the recent wars and the abandonment of much of the countryside led to an explosion in the population of prey animals, which led to a similar increase of large predators. Overpredation is beginning to make prey scarce, leaving large numbers of large, hungry, aggressive creatures roaming the countryside, looking for their next meal.
Roads - the Aruthiens and Barlozians made excellent roads, which have been damaged by the Upheaval. In many places, roads have been covered by mudslides, lava flows, collapsed into sinkholes, riven by crevasses or simply fractured as the land rose or fell. Travel by road is difficult and only really feasible on foot on horseback. Wagons cannot currently traverse the damaged road system.
Rivers - Once the second highway of the March, the rivers have become dangerous and unpredictable. During the upheaval, the Dare river flowed backwards for two days, then returned to normal, but changed colors seven different times over the next month. At times the river was normal temperature, other days steaming hot or icy cold.
Major neighboring settlements - Aranor in the south is a free city-state, but has little to do with the lands north of them and seems to have neither the interest or manpower to push north. However, the city has become crowded with displaced folk from other parts of Barloz.
Dethgar Hold in the northeast is a major Aruthien dwarven settlement, but have little presence on the surface and no good route to the south. The hold could be reached with great difficulty, or a road created with feats of engineering.
Tir Arnoth to the northwest is a distant major city, but road conditions make reaching the city difficult.
Sea travel - there is no major port on the west coast of Tantathia. The stondi flow area was treacherous before the upheaval. It is possible that sufficient deep water anchorages exist among the Shattered Isles, but no route has even been scouted, the area is difficult to traverse, and no one lives there. However, a seaport would transform the region.