Army of Exploration

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Army of Exploration
The arms of Taldor.

Military force
Conquest of Avistan and Garund
Source: Taldor, the First Empire, pg(s). 9–10

Throughout its early history, the Empire of Taldor repeatedly launched expansionist military campaigns designed to increase its territory and wealth. These Armies of Exploration met with variable success, but at its height, Taldor controlled territories now belonging to Galt, Andoran, Isger, Molthune, Nirmathas, Lastwall, and Cheliax. Not only did these colonies bring the empire untold wealth, but they spread Taldan culture and the Taldane language throughout the Inner Sea region. Below is a short list of the best-remembered of these campaigns.1

First Army of Exploration

The First Army of Exploration, led by the famous General Porthmos, destroyed Goroth Lodge in the Verduran Forest in 37 AR and charted the Sellen River as far as Sevenarches.23

Second Army of Exploration

The Second Army of Exploration built upon the successes of the First and explored the regions north of Lake Encarthan in 499 AR, making it all the way to the orcs in the Hold of Belkzen.41 Some efforts were made to explore portions of what is now known as Numeria, Nirmathas, and Molthune, but made little progress due to hostile locals and dwindling supplies.56 Friendly relations were established with the dwarves of Kraggodan who forged peaceful treaties with the newcomers. The dwarves proved more than willing to cede the region now known as Nirmathas, mostly because they found the idea of a buffer region between them and the Hold of Belkzen appealing.7 House Corcina rose to prominence during the Second Army of Exploration and have remained a fixture of the Taldan nobility ever since.8

Third Army of Exploration

General Coren led the Third Army of Exploration into western Avistan, where he founded the city of Corentyn in 1520 AR in order to secure the passage to and from the Inner Sea, and created a massive defensive earthwork.9 Near the opposite side of the empire, the Third Army built the military outpost of Gensmaren in what is now Razmiran.10 During its tenure, the Third Army of Exploration secured the entire northern coast of the Inner Sea for the Empire of Taldor, making it that nation's greatest expansionist endeavor; no Army of Exploration before or after ever matched its successes.14 One of the heroes remembered from this army is Draconos the Flametongue, a Taldan knight famed for his perseverance to find peaceful solutions, yet having overwhelming prowess with his flaming whip to defeat any stubborn enemies.11

Carmyn e'Brothasa served as the chronicler of the Third Army's exploits in the north.12

Fourth Army of Exploration

The Fourth Army of Exploration surveyed and staked a claim to the lands that would eventually be Andoran in 1683 AR,4 and made a brief attempt into the Five Kings Mountains.1 A soldier named Galitian Maramaxus greatly distinguished himself while serving in its ranks.13

Fifth Army of Exploration

The Fifth Army of Exploration continued the work of the First Army of Exploration, and pushed north through the present-day River Kingdoms (reaching the western border of Iobaria in 2009 AR). It then turned back and mapped the many branches of the Sellen River in 2014 AR.4 They used a massive, magical siege engine named the Worldbreaker during this campaign, which was turned into a monument and placed on Worldbreaker Hill in Oppara after it was decommissioned.14

A veteran of this war named Maldar Tymon founded the city-state of Tymon in what is now the River Kingdoms in 2021 AR.15 Taldor granted him this land after many years of distinguished service to the Empire.1617

Sixth Army of Exploration

The Sixth Army holds the ignoble reputation of having lost the enormous, magical siege engine Worldbreaker (see Fifth Army) to the forces of the Gorilla King in the Mwangi Expanse in 2089 AR, after pulling it from its foundation in Oppara.1814 The Sixth Army, which was composed of thousands of militiamen conscripted from the province of Andoran in 2080 AR,19 entered the Expanse from the east, via the Ndele Gap in Nex. They only made it as far as the ruined city of Nagisa before they were ambushed by the Gorilla King's forces and massacred.20 The general at this time was Erestos Marburran, although the force was led by Grand Prince Cyricas, who was killed in the battle.2122 It is rumored that the Army wished to penetrate all the way to Garund's western coast, and thereby conquer all the lands surrounding the Inner Sea. Taldor was never able to fully recover from this great defeat.1

Seventh Army of Exploration

In 2133 AR the Seventh Army of Exploration pacified the Kellid tribes of Isger between the Menador and Five Kings Mountains in a desire to control trade between Druma and the nations along the Inner Sea. This resulted in the establishment of the Taldan protectorate of Isger, named after the defeated tribes.23224 Although successful, the victory was sorely won and the Taldan leadership was regarded with disdain for their brutal commands.25

Eighth Army of Exploration

The last Army of Exploration was launched in 4606 AR before the death of Aroden sowed chaos throughout the world.26 Desperate to revitalize the nation of Taldor, General Orphyrea Amandar set sail in the hopes of finding a new land to rule far from home. Despite being battered by tremendous storms mere months after leaving port, Amanandar weathered the death of Aroden and arrived in northern Shenmen in Tian Xia.27

After she and her army disembarked at the city of Kamikobu in 4608 AR, they defeated a dozen bandit warlords and took control of the region, renaming the city New Oppara.28


For additional as-yet unincorporated sources about this subject, see the Meta page.

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 James Jacobs, et al. The Inner Sea World Guide, 182–183. Paizo Inc., 2011
  2. 2.0 2.1 Erik Mona & Jason Bulmahn. Gazetteer, 20. Paizo Inc., 2008
  3. Joshua J. Frost. “Oppara, The Gilded City” in Taldor, Echoes of Glory, 20. Paizo Inc., 2009
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 James Jacobs, et al. The Inner Sea World Guide, 35. Paizo Inc., 2011
  5. Jim Groves, et al. “Gazetteer” in Numeria, Land of Fallen Stars, 4. Paizo Inc., 2014
  6. Lissa Guillet & Amber E. Scott. “A Land Divided” in Lands of Conflict, 4. Paizo Inc., 2017
  7. Thurston Hillman. Kraggodan” in Siege of Stone, 65. Paizo Inc., 2017
  8. Crystal Frasier. “Campaign Traits” in War for the Crown Player's Guide, 10. Paizo Inc., 2018
  9. Jeff Quick. Corentyn” in Cities of Golarion, 17. Paizo Inc., 2009
  10. Tim Hitchcock, et al. “Welcome to the Pathfinder Society” in Seekers of Secrets, 14. Paizo Inc., 2009
  11. Calder CaDavid, et al. “Introduction” in Chronicle of Legends, 2. Paizo Inc., 2019
  12. Greg A. Vaughan. “The Varnhold Vanishing” in The Varnhold Vanishing, 25. Paizo Inc., 2010
  13. Robert G. McCreary. Voice in the Void, 20. Paizo Inc., 2009
  14. 14.0 14.1 Joshua J. Frost. “Oppara, The Gilded City” in Taldor, Echoes of Glory, 19. Paizo Inc., 2009
  15. Adam Daigle. Uringen” in Guide to the River Kingdoms, 65. Paizo Inc., 2010
  16. Erik Mona & Jason Bulmahn. Gazetteer, 51. Paizo Inc., 2008
  17. China Miéville, et al. Guide to the River Kingdoms, inside back cover. Paizo Inc., 2010
  18. Erik Mona, et al. “Chapter 5: The World” in Campaign Setting, 201. Paizo Inc., 2008
  19. Tim Hitchcock & Jason Nelson. “Gazetteer” in Andoran, Birthplace of Freedom, 5. Paizo Inc., 2015
  20. Amber Stewart, et al. “Lost Kingdoms” in Heart of the Jungle, 49. Paizo Inc., 2010
  21. Mikko Kallio, et al. City in the Lion's Eye, inside back cover. Paizo Inc., 2018
  22. Richard Pett. The Moonscar, 28. Paizo Inc., 2012
  23. Michael Kortes. “What Lies in Dust” in What Lies in Dust, 48. Paizo Inc., 2009
  24. Erik Mona & Jason Bulmahn. Gazetteer, 34. Paizo Inc., 2008
  25. James Jacobs, et al. The Inner Sea World Guide, 183. Paizo Inc., 2011
  26. Mark Moreland, et al. “Life in Taldor” in Taldor, the First Empire, 11. Paizo Inc., 2017
  27. James Jacobs, et al. “Regions of the Dragon Empires” in Dragon Empires Gazetteer, 18. Paizo Inc., 2011
  28. James Jacobs, et al. “Regions of the Dragon Empires” in Dragon Empires Gazetteer, 17. Paizo Inc., 2011