The Prime Material Plane, Trine, is a world of far flung wilderness interspersed with pockets of civilization. This is a direct result of the ongoing conflict between the Gods and Dragons. Because direct conflict is banned by celestial treaty, only proxy conflicts can occur – and Trine is the board upon which the Gods and Dragons play their games. Where the Gods hold sway, civilization thrives and flourishes – all of the great cities are their domain. In the realms of nature and wilderness, the Dragons presence can be felt, especially in the great forests, the deserts and oceans of the world.
In the past great empires existed, and many have risen and fallen throughout the course of time. Today, only ruins of those civilizations exist. Instead the various races of the world cohabitate many of the pockets of light throughout the world. There are some great city-states, and many smaller city-states. In some areas a feudal lord may hold sway over several towns from a central city. But for the most part each locale keeps to itself.
Currently there is a state of overall peace throughout the world, especially in the Nentir Vale where our story begins. At the heart of the Vale is the city of Fallcrest, ruled by the Lord Warden. It is a crossroads of both land and river travel, and much trade flows through the city.
There are rumors of strange happenings coming from different parts of Trine: emissaries coming from the Shadowfell to preach their alien religion to the world, though this is hard to credit for few have ever seen a Drow; an order of Paladins that worship no god and preach a life of military discipline who are converting entire towns to their beliefs; and some claim to have sighted Dragons walking the earth, gathering the more intelligent wild monsters to them.