A demon-haunted wasteland that lies at the northern most reaches of Avistan where it meets the frozen Crown of the World, the Worldwound is an unnatural blight. Formed shortly after the beginning of the Age of Lost Omens the Worldwound is probably the greatest threat to life on the face of Golarion.
Until the next Adventure Path is published, at least.
Unsurprisingly, considering the inherently chaotic nature of demons, the Worldwound has no government and is instead a loose coalition of demonic tyrants, with the strength to rule their weaker demonic kin. They are united by one common purpose: to cause as much misery and destruction on the material plane as possible. The country is split into many, many petty fiefdoms, each ruled by a demonic master. Whether they rule through sheer force as is favoured by the more powerful demons like balors or mariliths, or through subtle manipulation favoured by succubi and glabrezus, each realm is its own hell and each is equally hostile to mortal life. While there is no official government, certain demon rulers hold more power than others. The most powerful demon is the balor Khorramzadeh, who rules Iz, followed by the marilith Zuhra Aponavicius, who conquered the crusader city of Drezen. Despite not being the most powerful demon, the most respected creature in the Worldwound is the demonic archmage Vahedifar Ayeshalmoutey, as she has studied the worldwound since before its formation when it was merely a demonic taint, and it is believed that she may have had a hand in creating the Worldwound, as she was certainly one of the first demons to enter Golarion through it.
The Worldwound is another nation (if such a word can be used to describe this tumorous intrusion on reality) created in the tumultuous chaos following the death of Aroden. The earliest hints of this demonic disaster can be found in truly ancient scriptures that detail the times before Aroden's ascension to godhood when he walked Golarion as a man. There are ancient myths of Aroden vanquishing a demonic cult dedicated to Deskari the so called Usher of the Apocalypse, driving his cultists from the land into the Lake of Mists and Veils. For thousands of years this was viewed as just another obscure myth but with the Aroden's death and the following events it took on a new significance. Before the Age of Lost Omens the Worldwound was a powerful yet barbaric Kellid nation called Sarkoris. When Aroden died it caused a very slight planar shift that knocked the whole of Golarion from its normal metaphysical alignment and slightly towards the fearful abyssal plane. This shift manifested itself in the northern reaches of Sarkoris, their mystics and witches seeing a time of chaos and a thinning of the borders between realities. The Worldwound began its encroachment with strange demonic beasts haunting the barrows and tombs of the Northmounds. These foul creatures soon spread out, attacking isolated clan holdings near the Northmounds. There also arose rumours of a mile long cosmic blight that was rimmed by jet black flames that was located near the city of Iz, this site became known as the Worldwound. This corruption soon spread to engulf an area the size of a country, destroying what was once Sarkoris, the Worldwound's expansion was only halted when the First Mendevian Crusade was launched.
The geography of the Worldwound is a sickening flexible thing, with the features of the land shifting in front of the viewers very eyes. This fluidity of form grows worse the closer one gets to the actual rift that the Worldwound is named for, the land here even seems pained by this constant change. At the further reaches of the flaming demonic chasm that is the Worldwound, where it borders on the surrounding realms, this instability becomes less and less and the land begins resembling the realms surrounding it, usually cold grasslands. The Worldwound is hated by almost all of the surrounding nations for its borders constantly push against their boundaries, always trying to expand. The Hold of Belkzen is the realm least overly hostile to the Worldwound, with its bestial orc inhabitants who seem not so distant from the neighbouring savage demons. To the west lies the Realm of the Mammoth Lords whose inhabitants skirmish constantly with the demons of the Worldwound trying to protect their easternmost city of Tolguth To the south of the Worldwound lies Numeria and Ustalav neither of which actively battles the infection of the Worldwound but still eye their northern neighbour with fear and trepidation. To the east lies the crusader nation of Mendev, the most vehement opponents of the Worldwound. Once the nation of Mendev surrounded the whole of the Worldwound stretching from the old Sarkosian city of Dyinglight to the now ruined city of Storasta to the conquered crusader city of Drezen. Now much of its former territory has fallen to the foul blight of the ever expanding Worldwound.
- Erik Mona et al. (2008). Campaign Setting, p. 149. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-112-1
- Erik Mona et al. (2008). Campaign Setting, p. 148. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-112-1
- Erik Mona et al. (2008). Campaign Setting, p. Poster Map. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-112-1
- Erik Mona et al. (2008). Campaign Setting, p. 95. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-112-1
- Erik Mona et al. (2008). Campaign Setting, p. 150. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-112-1
|Nations of Avistan|
Absalom • Andoran • Brevoy • Cheliax • Druma • Galt • Hermea • Hold of Belkzen • Irrisen • Isger • Kyonin • Lastwall • Lands of the Linnorm Kings • Mendev • Molthune • Nidal • Nirmathas • Numeria • Qadira • Razmiran • Realm of the Mammoth Lords • The River Kingdoms • Taldor • Ustalav • Varisia • Worldwound