After Emperor Baium had been imprisoned by the gods on the topmost floor of his "Tower of Insolence", the Elmoreden Empire soon fell apart. In the southern part of the continent six smaller Territories formed: Gludio, Dion, Giran, Aden, Oren and Innadril. Of those six Territories, the most powerful by far was Oren. This had on the one hand to do with the fact, that the Ivory Tower, a center of magical learning, was located there. The wizards did not want their research to be disturbed by marching armies and marauding troops. Therefore they dispatched more than a dozen Sorcerers who were permanently living in Oren Castle and supporting the troops with their spells. Although other lords had Court Sorcerers as well, the skills of the Ivory Tower wizards in casting fireballs and healing soldiers on the battlefield were absolutely unsurpassed.
Another factor that caused the powerful position of Oren was the construction of what is now known as the "Tower of Insolence". Although the very idea of building a tower to reach the abode of the gods and ask them for the secret of immortality was quite preposterous, the construction project itself had required a great number of Dwarven engineers and craftsmen, many of whom did not return back north after the project had been terminally stopped by the gods, but stayed in the area. It was those engineers who built the Town of Oren on its rocky outcrop, reachable only via two narrow, easily defended ramps. Although nowadays, in this Age of Chaos, every other week some alliance of clans is laying siege to Oren Castle, no-one has ever even tried to take the town itself, where Dwarven Warsmiths, the most famous among them of course being Leolin (also known as "Reorin"), are quietly producing very efficient implements for killing people.
But ultimately the true reason for the dominance of Oren among the southern Territories was its position on the border to Elmore. This entailed a great number of skirmishes, clashes and outright wars, which in turn put the whole economy on a military footing. Soldiers and engines of war were seen everywhere in the town and for every young man in Oren it was an unquestioned axiom that he would join the army as soon as he was legally permitted. And this was not just empty propaganda. Through its very geographical location, Oren did indeed function as a shield against Elmore. For Elmore, the only viable access to the south was via the road from Goddard and a narrow border pass that could be easily held by a limited number of well-trained soldiers. The southern Territories were well aware of this. They were quietly grateful to Oren and never questioned its dominant role, at least until Lord Raoul Cadmus of Aden came along.