Marque of the Hunters
People from here are called: Noktish
King Lars (of Olviss)
The Royal Line of Olviss Sages has ruled Noktor in some form since ancient times. However, since the advent of the steam movement and the subsequent rise of democratic election throughout the region, the role of the Sage has become something of a figurehead position, with little direct authority that isn't filtered through the People's Council.
The People's Council
A circle of "experts" elected by the districts and outer Forts of the Noktor region. The People's council drafts "recommendations" that are placed before the King to be signed into law/policy if they receive at least 75% approval. (Policy with only majority approval can be presented to the King, but he is free to choose not to sign any bill without adequate approval from the council.)
Cultural Identity and Ideals:
The City of Thought
Noktor invented Steam Power. They invented circuitry and most of the foundational theories of clockwork mechanisms. They invented dirigible airships, and remains the foremost leader in aircraft technology.
But even before the rise of modern science, Noktor has always been a nation of thinkers. The royal line of Olviss has always had an interest in conversing with sages, and their rule has always been centered primarily on philosophy, intellectual discourse, and the scrutiny of new ideas.
Many volumes of the Corbanite Accounts are devoted to the courts of the Olviss Kings and Queens of old, who were delighted to invite Corbanites into the court, where their beliefs and teachings could be tested and questioned. Many believe this drive to question is what led to their place at the head of the scientific revolution.
The Origin of the Great Voyage
James Bowman's legendary journey across Escaria began and ended in Noktor, the city of his birth. Bowman was a pioneer, but he stood on the shoulders of countless court scientists laboring towards discoveries using the revolutionary "Steam Engines" that their nation was developing. Noktor was already a leader in science, but with Bowman's success they were soon regarded as the center of scientific discovery in the known world.
After his return, Bowman founded the Bowman Institute of Advanced Sciences, which was Escaria's first independent research school. It was the first time that a school of this sort was founded without the direct patronage of that nation's crown, and became the model for the many scholarly Institutes that would arise across Escaria in the century to follow.
Most importantly, Bowman centered the advancement of science in the minds of an entire generation of young Noktish students, all eager to make discoveries or strike out and have the kinds of magnificent adventures told of in Bowman's journals. That dream has never faded in Noktor, and even after 125 years the spirit of discovery is still the heart of modern Noktish culture.
The Rise of the Steam-Punks
Noktor was also the nation where scholars, inspired by Bowman's delight in flaunting convention, began to embrace the scientific counter-culture known as the Steam Movement. It became fashionable to question doctrine and tradition wherever it was found, and this spread in a variety of scientific and social fields.
The ethos of the early Steam Movement might best be defined as such: that exploration is it's own virtue, as well as it's own reward. This led some to not only challenge doctrine, but also hierarchy, morality, and eventually legality as well. This led to the broad labeling of these counter-culture scientists as "punks", a label which many embraced and championed in the years to follow.
Economy and Trade:
Noktor enjoys a sizable coastline. It is one of the only nations that has water-way access to the city-states that border the great southern plains. This, added to their sizable airship fleet makes them a commercial power as well as a technological one.
Technology and intellectual property (such as books and tools) are obviously hotly desired exports from this region, but so too are the various seafoods and seaweeds to be had from the fishing fleets that harbour in Noktor.
In past ages, the powerful trade and export business made Noktor a rich nation. That business has only grown since then, but so have the Noktish laboratories, which are hungry for rare minerals and large quantities of metals. These precious components must be imported from the north and south, at great expense to those labs, making the flow of funds in and out of the nations much more even than it ever was in the past.
Noktish scientists are some of the best in the world in their respective fields, and they aren't ashamed to remind people of that. There is often an air of arrogance that comes out when Noktish scientists are pressed into debate, as though they assume themselves to be better informed or educated than their peers from other nations. (The fact that this is often true does nothing to reduce the ill-will such sentiments tend to cause in others.)
Knowledge Without Boundaries
Another unfortunate reputation that Noktish people have is their tendency to remain impartial and detached from their surroundings. Noktish people value objectivity, and are often criticized for their eagerness to perform experiments that others might find morally or ethically questionable.