Kingdom of Germania
Deutschland (Orcish), l'Allemagne (Elvish)
70% Human, 20% + Orc & Half-Orc, 6% Halfling/Gnome, 2% Elven, 2% Other.
Located in central Europa, Germania is made up of lowlands the North Germania Plain; the central Uplands (Mittelgebirge), and the Southern Highlands. The Bavarian plateau in the southwest averages 1,600 ft (488 m) above sea level, but it reaches 9,721 ft in the Zugspitze Mountains, the highest point in the country. The Germania Bight makes up the large Coastal Bight that includes the entire Germanic Coast.
Germania's major rivers are the Danube, the Elbe, the Weser, and the Rhine. The Danube flows through south Germania, past the bordering Zech Republic, Romania, exiting out in the Black Sea. It is a major Trade route through Southern Europa. The Elbe Starts in the Riesengebirge mountains in the Zech Republic flowing north Through Dresden and eventoually to the North Sea. The Weser Flows Through Lower Saxony before reaching Bremen, then flowing further to Bremerhaven and the North Sea. It is the longest river in Germania that reaches the sea. The Rhine is a river that begins in the Swiss region of Graubünden in the Alps, forms part of the Franco-Germania border, then flows through Germania and eventually empties into the North Sea in the Netherlands.
Since Germany is a somewhat arbitrary south-north slice across central Europe, it does not have vegetation and animal life greatly different from that of neighbouring countries. Mostly Covered by oak and hornbeam forests, with sandy areas on the North German Plain covered by a predominantly mixed oak-birch woodland and Heather popular for sheep grazing. The Central Germanic Uplands are traditionally the domain of the beech a tree with a leaf canopy so dense that few plants can survive beneath it. The beech trees survive well on the poor soils covering the limestones and the Bunter Sandstone, though many are slowly being replaced by pine in the lowlands and spruce in the uplands. In the highest elevations of the Alps, mixed forests and pasture provide grazing for cattle.
Originally Germania was mostly independent tribes and small village communities. Germania Myth places the birthplace of Orks in the Southern Alps and according to legend the tribes of Europa eventually drove them off the mainland and across the Baltic and North Sea where the Orc Nations reside to this day.
Just over two centuries ago a significant force of Orcs landed on the beaches of the Germania Bight. This force was led by an Orc of Unusual Intelegence, Otto the Great, Chief of the Iornfist Clan. Due to an unexpected Storm the entire raiding force ended up stranded with no ships. Over the next several Decades, Otto through military genius and luck survived by raiding and recruiting. Unable to manage conqured teritory nor maintain a military force, he'd often recruit the local government under martial law. For most pragmatic Germans life continued on the same with little more changing than who claimed overal leadership. Over time Lost numbers were replaced from local recruits and tribal mergers. Otto eventually died in battle, and a new Ironfist leader replaced him. Overtime, through recruiting, inter-mariages, and cross-polinating culture, the decendents of the Original Ironfist clan and the original Germanic Residents are Indistinguishable.
Shortly after the Death of Otto the Great a second Invasion of Orcs from the North began, and durring the disputed succession of leadership after Otto's death this force gained a strong foothold on the North Coast. It wasn't until a German local by the name of Bismarck, a protege of Otto's, took command of the combined tribal and Iornfist forces in the north that the 2nd Orc invasion was defeated. Bismarck's Victories ensured his popularity in Germania, and helped secure his seat as the successor of Otto the Great. Though most people regard Otto the Great as the Conquerer and Unifier of Germania, it actuallity it was durring the long political reign of Lord Bismarck, the first to hold the title of Reichsführer, that the current integrated government was formed.
Germania is favoured with a generally temperate climate. Extremely high temperatures in the summer and deep, prolonged frost in the winter are rare. Despite the country’s generally temperate climate, there are specific regional patterns associated with temperature, frequency of sunshine, humidity, and precipitation.
Germania’s northwestern and lowland portions are affected chiefly by the uniformly moist air, moderate in temperature, that is carried inland from the North Sea by the prevailing westerly winds. Although this influence affords moderately warm summers and mild winters, it is accompanied by the disadvantages of high humidities, extended stretches of rainfall, and, in the cooler seasons, fog. Precipitation diminishes eastward, as the plains open toward the Eurasian interior and the average temperatures for the warmest and coldest months become more extreme.
The hilly areas of the central and southwestern regions and, to an even greater degree, the upland and plateau areas of the southeast are subject to the more pronounced ranges of hot and cold from the countervailing continental climate. The mountains have a wetter and cooler climate, with westward-facing slopes receiving the highest rainfall from maritime air masses. The Brocken in the Harz mountains receives annual precipitation of some 60 inches at an altitude in excess of 3,700 feet. The sheltered lee slopes and basins have, by contrast, rainfall that is extremely low about 17 inches annually—and hot summers—July mean temperatures above 64 °F that necessitate crop irrigation.
Southeastern Germania may intermittently be the coldest area of the country in the winter, but the valleys of the Rhine, Main, Neckar, and Moselle rivers may also be the hottest in the summer. Winters in the North Germania Plain tend to be consistently colder, if only by a few degrees, than in the south, largely because of winds from Scandinavia. There is also a general decrease of winter temperature from west to east, with Berlin having an average temperature in January of 31.5 °F.
The Government of Germania is a military Democratic Stratocracy with the Head of the standing military, the Lord General (Reichsführer) being the defacto ruler of the Country. The country is divided into 16 military districts called Länder (singular, colloquially called Bundesland.) Each district administered by a District commadant(Oberführer) with individual cities and communities run by a lower ranking officer or knight, either an Oberst or Hauptmann. The right to rule or vote on civil maters, hold an govermental office of Authority is limited to active or retired members of the Panzerfaust.
The Germania MIlitary consists of two forces, a standing army of profesional soldiers, the Armored Fist(Panzerfaust), and the Militia (Bundeswehr). The Panzerfaust is a well disiplined, trained, and equiped force evolved from the original military force that conqured Germania. The Knighted Officers of the Panzerfaust make up the Govermental Body of Germania as well as head the Military. The Panzerfaust Soldiers are volunteers recruited from the Bundeswehr Militia. Though Hundreds of Milita members volunteer each year, the selection proccess is a grueling Year long process. Anually the Latest Recruits to be awarded the status of Panzerfaust are announced, and a new batch of volunteers begin the selection proccess. Casualty rates for the Selection proccess tend to be fairly high, though the majority of volunteers who fail the selection proccess return home or to serve with the Militia.
The Bundeswehr Militia is a group coalition of individual regional and district Militia. By Germania Law, all adults (the Millita is a Coed Service) must serve a minimum 2 years in the Milita begining anytime between their 16th and 26th Birthyear. During this time in the Militia, while also recieving martial training, the Bundeswehr also serves as the local police force and labor force for civil projects. Time in the Milita is considered a rite of passage to adulthood, and an oportunity to earn a small savings to begin one's life, fund one's education, or begin a family.
Where the Rank structure of the Military Knighthood consists entirely of members of the Panzerfaust the Junior ranks of the Panzerfaust and the Bundeswehr share quivilent military ranks. The Officers of the Panzerfaust ranks from Highest to Lowest start with the Lord General(Reichsführer); District Commandant or Sienor Commander(Oberführer); to the local City, community or Force Leader called Oberst or Hauptmann. With the rank of Oberst being one step Sienor to Hauptmann. Within the Junior Ranks of the Panzerfaust as well as the Militia, the non-nobility ranks in order are Feldwebel, Fähnrich, Gefreiter, and last the rank of soldier refered to as the Schütze.
The Panzerfaust has no seperate Naval Force, with the Navy of Germania being provided by Naval Milita primarily from Bremen, Hamburg, and Schleswig-Holstein.
The Legal System of Germania is based on an Adversiarial system based on Delegated Legislation. Disputes are presented to a Local or Regional Magistrate(An apointed Panzerfaust Officer), and the Magistrate pronounces Judgment based on the Information provided by the two parties in Dispute. Precedent has a strong bearing on case judgements, but the Judging Magistrate is free to pronounce Judgement as he or she sees fit.
Baden-Württemberg is in the Southwestern Part of Germania to the east of the upper Rhine. Stuguard is the old traditional Capitol of Germania, and was the Historical Seat of the Former Royal Family. The Decendents of the Family still live here at the old royal palace, and though they have no official political power; The District being officially administered by the Apointed Commadant), they do still have a lot of influcence with the people or Germania. The Heir by the terms of subjugation from the original invasion as well as Germania tradition, holds the honorary rank of Oberführer(Commandant).
(Freistaat Bayern) Capitol: München
According to Historical Tradition, the Mountains of Southern Bavaria are the birthplace of the Orcish Races, and still hidden in the deep depths under the mountain sleep the Dark Evil Dragons that Originally gave birth to the Orcs to plauge the world.
Berlin is a CityState and the Capitol city of Germania. It is Headquarters of the Lord General (Reichsführer), ruler of Germania & the Elite Standing Army The Armored Fist (Panzerfaust).
Brandenburg is know for its huge ancient forests and natural enviroments. Though Elves are rare to uncommon through most of Germania, Brandenburg has the Highest percentage of Elven Population in Germania.
The CityState of Bremen is one of the major trade cities of Germania, with a major Naval Port at the subsidiary city of Bremerhaven Located on the Coastal area called the Germanic Bight. Most foriegn trade Flows on the Weser River through Bremerhaven and Bremen before spreading through Germania and on to Central Europe.
The City state of Hamburg is the 2nd Largest Port in Germania, and Home to the Small Germania Navy, and the Military Shipyard. Hamburg Builds Galley Ships for most of Europe. Germanic Galleys are Famous for being Tough and Durable with a Large Capacity, but also Slow moving with poor maneuverability.
While Germania is known for its military traditions Hesse is most famous for it Militia, and has a reputation for the best soldiers. It is common in Germanic legends for most heroes of great military strength and skill to have originated in Hesse. While Mercenaries are a common export from Germania. The Hessen Mercenary is an infamous stereotype for military agression throughout Europa.
(Niedersachsen) Capitol: Hannover
Lower Saxony is bordered by a dangerous inaccessable coastline to the north, The Wild Northlands(Netherlands) to the West, and in the extreme west of Lower Saxony is the Emsland, a poor and sparsely populated area, dominated by inaccessible swamps. It would be an unpopular region, but the area is rich in natural resources. The area is know for industrious people willing to overcome the rough enviroment to access its riches.
Due to its lengthy name, the state is often abbreviated colloquially to MeckPomm. Other than the Rare Orcish raid that passes by the Schleswig-HOlstein, Meckpom is a historically undisturbed region. Panzerfaust Soldiers often Consider being stationed here to be a cush job, and a place where incompetent officers with enough political influence to prevent decomissioning, are sent so they can be kept from causing harm.
Approximately half of the state is located in the relative low-lying terrain of the Westphalian Lowland and the Rhineland, both extending broadly into the North German Plain. A large agricultural Area with over 50% of the entire land area of the district dedicated to farms, with another 15% consisting of forests cultured for harvest.
An area Famous for producing Vinyards and Wine Export. Local myth states that the reason that Germania is at War with France, is that the Elves had the Audacity to claim French wine was Better. Beautiful country side filled with numerous historical battle sites, and memorials from past conflicts between Germania and France.
Traditionally is home to the largest military force in Germania, since the cease fire with France over 150 years ago. Officially Germania is still at war with the Elves of France, but no official exchange of hostilities has occurred in Over a Century. The Elves of France maintain a small palace near Saarbrüken as a diplomatic embasy.
Within the city of Dresden lies the Academy of Dresden, a large wizard academy. The Academy has existed here longer than recorded history, before the town grew up around it. The oldest part of the Academy is a Tower built of an unknown black stone, and is sealed off to everyone but the Grand Master who heads the Academy. Durring the Invasion War, the Academy remained neutral and refused to participate in the conflict. Officially an Oberführer resides in Dresden as the military administrator, but in reality he is merely a liason between the wishes of the Academy and the Germania Military Command.
Saxony-Anhalt is famous for its good soil, hence agriculture makes up a signifigant part of its economy. Where North Rhine-Westphalia is known for the growing of bulk goods and staples, Saxony-Anhalt is renown for its specialty gardens and family plots cultivating an impressive varaiety of local and imported goods.
The Baltic Sea coast in the east of Schleswig-Holstein is marked by bays, fjords and cliff lines. There are rolling hills (the highest elevation is the Bungsberg at 550 feet and many lakes, especially in the eastern part of Holstein called the Holstein Switzerland. It is an area known for it small rowboats, and fishing.
Most of Thuringia is within the watershed of the Saale, a left tributary of the Elbe. Thuringia is been known by the nickname of "the green heart of Germania" due to the dense forest covering the land. Thuringia is known for its being in touch with nature and is the home to the Circus Krone. The Circus Krone being the largest representation of Shaman in Germania.
Germania Religion is an individual and mostly local affair, Religious belief a cultural blend of Old Orcish and Druidic Shamanism. Most communities have a local Grove, Henge, or belfry where periodic ceremonies take place, and most individuals provide regular donations at locally apropriate religious events. Local wise women and witches often provide their neighbors with advice as well as minor magicks.
Notes of interest:
1.) Through tradition and historical president, it is the local and regional churches who primarily support and provide patronage to purely artistic endeavors. It is common for donations of Art, Music, and Writing to be donated to the local churches, which maintains them through local assistance and donations.
2.) It is Legal Precedent for Govermental Magistrates to Treat the local church or religious establishment with the same local and legal rights as any Craft Guild, and by Law the Church is to be considered the Guild athority on matters of spirituality and products of related ephemeral nature.
3.) The largest individual religious Group in Germania is called the Circus Krone, a large group of Druids and Rangers who travel throughout Germania providing a large traveling Performance Circus featuring an entire zoo of natural and supernatural animals as well as religious services. It is the saying of the Performers of Circus Krone that "We do not live OFF but WITH our animal friends."
Crafts are organized in guilds, traveling has been an integral part of the education of any craftsman. Before one can become a Meister (master craftsman), one has to be a Lehrling (apprentice) with a Meister for usually three years. Upon completion of the Lehre (apprenticeship) one becomes a Geselle. The guilds for most crafts, in particular the ones for carpenters, masons etc., mandated that every Geselle had to travel for a certain number of years without returning to their hometown, except in case of family emergencies. During these years, Gesellen would travel from town to town seeking temporary employment with various Meister. These travels are called Walz. Traditionally, the Walz had to last three years and one day, during which time the journeyman walked from town to town. Upon completion of the aprenticeship he is required to submit The Meisterstück (master piece), a piece of work of high quality and demand that you have to produce in order to become a Meister. It is a requirement that you have to be a Meister to be allowed to have your own shop and take apprentices.
In many of the majors cities there is a tradition to have a regular official place for haggling. All the odd stuff that you might have accumulated you can sell at any price you want (or get.) Rather than celebrating individually scattered yard sales, all those with an interest in such free micro-marketing come together on, say, every first Saturday of the month or (in a sufficiently large city) every weekend.
Germans place a high priority on structure, privacy and punctuality. The German people embrace the values of thriftiness, hard work and industriousness. Germans are often considered to be skillful, coldblooded, arrogant and oppressive, but also great businessmen. Germans are stoic people who strive for perfectionism and precision in all aspects of their lives. They do not admit faults, even jokingly, and rarely hand out compliments. At first their attitude may seem unfriendly, but there is a keen sense of community and social conscience and a desire to belong.
While some tend to define politeness in terms of "friendliness": smiling, telling "white lies" to avoid hurting people's feelings, pretending to like people even if we don't, saying "Hi, how are you?" whether we really care how they are or not, etc. Germans, however, tend to consider "respect" to be the proper way to show "politeness", and "respect" assumes that the other person wants an honest answer, not some pretty little "white lie". So, if you're really wanting your ego stroked, DON'T ask a German's Opinion, you might not like the answer that he gives. Likewise, DON'T EVER say anything to him "just to be nice" if you don't really mean it; he is too likely to take you quite literally at your word and then be terribly hurt later when he finds out that you didn't really mean it.
Germans don't try to make too much "chit chat" or "small talk". Most Germans know little or nothing of the art of talking about banal, superficial topics as a way of "breaking the ice" with new acquaintances; that custom belongs to other-style "friendliness" and is not part of German "respect". Germans also often react negatively to the shallow, superficial quality of casual friendships/acquaintanceships, and might react negatively towards you if you engage in much "light" frivolity.
Don't be afraid to voice opinions that might be different; if your opinion is at least logical, well-reasoned, and well-informed, they will more likely respect you for having your own mind, rather than be offended by you for having a different opinion.
Every community has at least one Beer Hall, a local gathering place and social center with it's own brewery. Germans take their beer very seriously. Beer is the most popular alcoholic beverage, and the country is known as the birthplace of a number of beer varieties, including Pilsner, Weizenbier (wheat beer), and Alt. These beers are crafted according to Reinheitsgebot, or the "Purity Law," a law that decrees beer that beer could only be brewed to exacting standards of quality. Brandy and schnapps are also favorite German alcoholic beverages.
The Beer hall is also home to the various comunity and local celebrations. Each beer hall and community has it own local traditional holidays and comunity gatherings. In some local traditions, before the wedding, it is agreed upon by the friends of the bride and groom to abduct the bride. Often during the reception the bride is kidnapped by the wedding witnesses (best man etc.) and taken to the Local Beerhall. The groom has to go rescue her and pay the bill.
While each communty has it's local customs and festivals, the most famous and common National Celebration is the October Harvest Festival: Oktoberfest. Oktoberfest is a big celbration and beer bash it starts each year on a Saturday in September and ends 16 to 18 days later, on the first Sunday in October. These festivals tend to be large extravagant community affairs, with lots of Eating, Drinking, and Dancing to traditional Germania music called Rök music. Rök music is known for its heavy drum beats and bass notes. During the October Celebrations it is common for close friends and relatives to exchange gifts, and celebrate together.
There is a tendency to eat a large, hot meal at mid-day, especially when it comes to family meals on Saturdays and Sundays.
Pork, beef, and poultry are the main varieties of meat consumed in Germany. Pork is the most consumed meat, with Schweinshaxe (braised pork hock) and Saumagen (pork stomach) being traditional pork dishes. Bratwurst, a form of sausage, is closely associated with German food. Among poultry, chicken is most common, although duck, goose, and turkey are also enjoyed. Game meats, especially boar, rabbit, and venison are also widely available all year round. Trout is the most common freshwater fish on the German menu; pike, carp, and European perch also frequently available. The average person in Germany will often consume over 130lb. of meat in a year.
Cabbage, beets, and turnips are commonly incorporated into meals, as they are native to the region, and potatoes and sauerkraut are also common parts of German cuisine. Vegetables are often used in stews or vegetable soups, but are also served as side dishes. Carrots, turnips, spinach, peas, beans, broccoli and many types of cabbage are very common.
There are more than 300 varieties of baked bread in Germany. A wide variety of cakes and tarts are served throughout the country, most commonly made with fresh fruit. Apples, plums, strawberries, and cherries are used regularly in cakes. Cheesecake is also very popular, often made with quark. Schwarzwälder Kirschtorte (Black Forest cake, made with cherries) is probably the most well-known example of a wide variety of typically German tortes filled with whipped or butter cream.
Other items Include Semmelknoedel: bread dumplings, eaten either with mushrooms in a creamy sauce or with meat dishes; Spargel: white asparagus harvested in late April and May, it has a very distinct flavour Usually accompanied by ham and a white creamy sauce; Weisswurst: very pale veal sausage, cooked and eaten in Bavaria; and Stollen and Lebkuchen: Delicious cakes and ginger biscuits that are eaten at various Holiday celebrations in Germany.