Wednesday, 1 July 2015

Wulver History 101

Gradually getting certain aspects of the Frozen Skies setting ironed out and set in stone, especially since I hope to have the Setting Primer out over the summer.

But first, what is going to be considered canon as far as the Wulvers are concerned.

The Wulvers

Nobody is sure about the exact origins of the Wulvers, they were already in Alyeska before the first explorers arrived and they later plagued the colonists that followed. However the few Ancient Terran texts that have been found and translated make no mention of the beasts, leaving scholars divided on whether or not there is a connection between the Wulvers and the fall of the Ancient Terrans. The Windryders do make mention of the beasts in their history, though since much of their cultural knowledge is oral based it is difficult to cite this source as creditable without more solid evidence. A few have ventured out into the Wulflands in a foolhardy attempt to discover more about the beasts' origins, typically they have found the cost for doing so was too high with next to no return.

The Wulvers have posed a huge threat for settlers right from the earliest days of Colonial Alyeska, so much so that the Commonwealth was willing to station an army of troops in Alyeska to defend the settlers from the Wulvers. At first the Wulvers were kept at bay before eventually being pushed back to allow for more land to be settled, something that was aided greatly by the arrival of the aircraft which were able to freely roam and attack any packs of Wulvers they spotted. Soon clusters of settlements sprang up across the great MacKenzie Plains in the west, plans were even set in motion to incorporate the lands of the western plains into a territory in their own right.

Then came the Great Darmonican War.

The War had little direct effect on Alyeska, but as it raged on the Commonwealth started feeling the pinch with regardless to manpower. Viewing the Wulvers as being little more than a minor threat the Commonwealth began siphoning off soldiers to replace losses and bolster its ranks, but more and more troops were withdrawn from Alyeska the longer the War went on for. Eventually a small cadre of regular soldiers backed up by the volunteers of the fledging Alyeska Militia was left to defend the settlers, but they were barely enough.

As the Commonwealth's military presence in Alyeska was weakened the Wulvers grew stronger and recover their strength, especially when the Commonwealth switched its military efforts to the defensive to help free up troops. Without the Commonwealth Army keeping them in check the Wulvers began striking out at remote outposts, gradually attacking settlements in ever-increasing numbers. Within a few years large swathes of the MacKenzie Plains were overrun by the Wulvers, the rump of the Commonwealth's military forces were withdrawn east of the Dragonspine Mountains, effectively abandoning the surviving settlements in what was now dubbed the Wulflands. The Dragonspine in conjunction with a line of fortifications called the Wulf Wall now protect whats left of the Commonwealth's holdings in Alyeska. Today there are still a few settlements out in the Wulflands, though they are effectively independent towns home to folk too stubborn to move and resentful at being left to die by the Commonwealth. Those who did leave went north into the icy Alyeskan Outlands to start over, many having left everything behind in the Wulflands. 

With the Mhór Farraige being extremely difficult to cross for ships and nigh impossible for aircraft due to that ocean now being plagued by constant storms in the wake of the Blast a decade earlier, Alyeska is effectively on its own against the Wulvers. The Commonwealth sends what it can, but its not much due to the difficulty of crossing the ocean and the need to maintain its forces in case of renewed hostilities. Given the now limited number of soldiers that it does have in Alyeska the Commonwealth have formed a couple of specialist units to deal with the Wulvers; the Wulfbane Commandos and the Outriders.

The Wulfbane Commandos' role is to use brute force against the Wulvers, trained for rapid deployments and able to bring a ton of firepower with them. They're meant to hit hard and fast to break up and wipe out large packs of Wulvers. In contrast the Outriders take a more subtle approach, their job is to patrol the Wulflands and report back on the movements of various Wulver packs. On occasion both have teamed up to deal with a pack that has posed a serious threat, this thankfully hasn't happened often and the two units enjoy a friendly rivalry with one another.

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