One might think of the Ox Plains similar to the Great Plains of the US. It is a rich farmland drained by a great, slow moving river system (The Ox River and the Junt). But for the people living there, Ox Plains can best be described as a backwater because it is isolated from the great kingdoms of the East by the Cantor Sea and isolated from the great Western kingdoms by the Troll Spire mountains. Of course the humans are nestled within great elven, gnoll, and orc kingdoms, but that doesn’t bring comfort to the human city states dotting the Ox plains. They are frequently assaulted by foreign raiding parties, but so far they have managed to cling to a stout, scratchy living.
The Ox plains surround the Ox River and great Junt River, bounded by the Deep Woods and the Cantor Sea. There is little elevation across the plains, high points between the Cantor Sea and Troll Spires average 200 feet or less. But the plains are fertile, growing all kinds of plants.
The city of Roustein sits at the confluence of the Ox and Junt rivers, where the two merge into the Junt river. After the confluence, the river empties into the Yellowtail swamp prior to arriving at the Cantor Sea. The swamp makes river travel dangerous; it is a place of pirates and slimy river monsters.
There is no effective northern boundary to the Ox Plains. From the perspective of the humans in the region, the plains are an empty wilderness populated by unpredictable natives. The Misty Forest stand along the northern border of the plains, but these are largely unexplored like the rest of the northern plains.
Three isolated human city states thrive here in the plains: Roustein City State, Nealor, and Fernwell. The plains also serve as homelands to many humanoids, especially Bugbear, Kobold, and Gnolls.
The Roustein city state huddles between the river Ox and the river Junt. It used to be the largest of the human kingdoms, but dragons overran the capital and now it is approximately the same size as the other two. Surrounded by rich farmland, Roustein exports raw materials to Fernwell and the empires across the sea. It is the only city-state that has banned slavery.
The Fernwell City State serves as the trade portal between the Cantor sea and the inland Ox Plains. It is situated between the Yellowtail Swamp and the Salty Mire. They have a thriving merchant class and a powerful navy.
The Nealor City State is the most isolated human kingdom, located on the northeastern edge of the Ox Plains. Little is known about this city state, except that it has extensive trade with kingdoms further North.
The history of the Ox Plains fades far back into obscurity, so far even the elves cannot remember. The elemental humanoids recount millions of years of history before the obscurity begins. This extensive presence means abandoned roads, moss covered walls, or a mysterious stairway can be found in every hillside and beside every stream.
Humans first arrived roughly 10,000 years ago at the locations where the great kingdoms formed. Pioneers first wandered into the Ox Plains in less than half that time. This is largely due to the one-way nature of the White Canyons through the Troll Spires. On can float down the river, but not back up again. Therefore, the history of the City States represent a very short time in the vast history of these plains.