The Western Barrens
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The flag used by the natives.
|Inhabited species||Penguins, various animals, and a whole lot of bugs|
|Native name||The Barrens|
|Foreign name||The Badlands|
|Founded||1920 (became territory in 2001)|
|– Founder||Warden of unknown prison|
|Time zone||EST (Eastshield Standard Time)|
The Western Barren is an abnormally hot and dry island territory far north of Polaris that belongs to the USA. It was first established as a prison island, forcing criminal penguins to suffer in the intense heat. However, at some point the prison shut down and everyone left on the island built their own towns and economy. It is currently part of the Uncharted States of the USA due to its immense heat, and it is advised that creatures don't visit here because of health risks. Also due to the heat, it has one of Antarctica's largest groups of Black-footed penguins (who like the heat).
Discovery and Prison Era
According to the stories told, A sailor came to an unusually warm and humid island in the late 1800's with vast amounts of trees which he used to repair his boat. The sailor would make a map to the island but few would venture there because of the heat. Several years later, a prison warden whose name is lost in history, would respond to over crowded prisons by sending prisoners to the swampy island. The prisoners were given the job to chop down trees for lumber and ship them out, they were to start on the West and work their way East. Due to the heat and lack of trees, the water logged soil dried up and the crops they depended on died out; much like many of the prisoners not long after. Very few penguins survived long enough to build shelters.
It wasn't until after the prison shut down that a group of Black-footed penguins came across the island while sailing. They found the island's heat and humidity to be quite comfortable in comparison to the bitter cold of the rest of the USA. They built townships and farms and have overall become a mecca for homesick Black-footed penguins. The island was claimed by the newly formed USA in 2001, and was later added to the "Uncharted State" due to its immense heat.
The Barrens can be divided into three regions:
The desert was the result from deforestation, creating a massive steppe. The days are hot and arid and the nights are cool. There is often little rain or clouds, though the occasional wind storm will pick up from time to time. The soil is often cracked or dusty. There are some old canyons or buttes but more of this area is flat. Dried up river beds are said to be common to find in this area.
A narrow prairie that lacks trees, it maintains the tall grass fields only by being so close to the water logged half of the island. This region is completely flat and is the agriculture center of the island. Mostly only farmers live here.
The only part of the island with any trees or water, it has deep pools of mud that are slowly sinking the townships and destructive willow trees. There is a special plant that grows here that filters salt water, which is essential for anyone to survive on this island due to the salt banks along the coast. Approximately, half of this area is below sea level and forms a massive basin. This is the most populous region to live in, being home to the largest town on the island and the capital.
The capital in the East is Samedi, the major town of the plains is called Kiena, and the town in the desert is called Zola. These are the three oldest and most important towns economy wise.
There are no major roads and few urbanization outside of these three towns.
- Zola, a city in the desert that was the first township on the island. The buildings are very old and outside of town is a large scrap yard.
- Samedi, the capital and the city of the swamps, which is slowly sinking.
- Pedy Coober. a subterranean town built in the opal mines out in the desert.
- Only place in the USA where Black-footed penguins are the majority
- The EPF once had a branch there but it was shut down due to overall lack of interest
- Being part of the uncharted states, there is no real legal system. It is supposed to be administered by Eastshield, but they generally have no involvement with the island due to its distance from the mainland.
- Zola is run by a gang/militia called Las Manillas