Population: Approximately 18,500
Government: Monarchy (King)
Allegiance: Independent / Chalax (see History of Korvosa, below, for details)
Economy: Primarily fishing and foreign trade. Many neighboring cities and communities bring their goods to Korvosa to ship elsewhere.
Racial Composition: 30% Human, 15% Gnome, 15% Tiefling, 10% Dwarf, 10% Halfling, 10% Half-Elf, 3% Elf, 2% other races (including Eladrin)

History of Korvosa

Races in Korvosa

Humans – The majority of Korvosa’s citizens are humans, though as more and more newcomers arrive, this ratio becomes less and less lopsided each year. A small subset preach for a return to Chalish values, whatever those values may be, but most Korvosan humans are more concerned with practical matters like family and wealth. Most of Korvosa’s noble houses originated as human families.

Gnomes – Gnomes, with their natural inclination towards magic, are drawn towards Korvosa, with many ending up enrolling at the Academy. In fact, nearly half of the Academy’s graduating students are gnomes, as the small creatures make excellent artificers, bards, sorcerers, warlocks, and wizards. Unlike in many major cities, gnomes are treated with a healthy dose of respect (and sometimes fear) in Korvosa, since there is a very good chance that any random gnome on the street may possess the ability to magically kill someone who insults them.

Halflings – After House Jeggare discovered that halflings make excellent cost-efficient sailors, this short and nimble race has flourished as Korvosa’s sailing elite. Most of Korvosa’s halflings work for the Tallmast Company as highly respected crews and captains, but many find the study of bardic magic at the Academy to be to their liking as well. Of course, their natural affinity for stealth and mischief also makes them excellent thieves, housebreakers, and cutpurses. Gnomes and Halflings are often close friends, sharing private amusement at the clumsiness of the taller races.

Tieflings – In many ways, Korvosa is a dream city for tieflings. The city’s cautious acceptance of diabolism allows tieflings to walk about as they please without fear of persecution, but without the uncomfortable idolization or expectations their infernal blood would bring them in evil nations such as Chalax. Naturally inclined towards any avenue of study at the Academy, tieflings flock to the famed magic university, finding within its walls a heartfelt kinship and camaraderie they rarely experience elsewhere. And for those who do wish to explore the origins of their infernal heritage, the Temple of Asmodeus is all too glad to help young tieflings in need of guidance.

Dwarves – Because of their contracts with the city and the noble houses, dwarven merchants from the nearby Hook Mountains will always find a warm welcome in Korvosa. Most dwarves choose not to live in Korvosa, though, preferring the solid stone of a mountain ceiling over the open air (and foul, briny smell) of the inlet bay. There are always some exceptions, of course — House Goldhand began as a dwarven clan, and is quite content with its relocation to the city.

Half-Elves – Talented diplomats, merchants, and politicians, half-elves are a common sight among Korvosa’s working-class. Flexible and charismatic, half-elves often consider themselves outsiders by birth, and frequently seek companionship by serving in the Korvosan Guard, studying at the Academy as bards or warlocks, or by joining one of the city’s numerous clergies. House Shavra and House Zenderholm tend to be quite welcoming towards half-elves.

Sun Elves – There is only one group of Sun Elves that live in Korvosa: House Arkona. Haughty and reclusive, House Arkona is surprisingly chilly towards any other sun elf who end up their city, declining to meet with them, or disdainfully remarking that the traditional sun elf lifestyle is “crude and arrogant” compared to the Arkonas’ adopted Qudran culture. Unsurprisingly, sun elf travelers and mechants tend to not stay in Korvosa for long.

Wood Elves – While spotting an elven visitor is not uncommon in Korvosa, it is exceedingly rare for one of the fey folk to choose to live here, as many find the crowded streets and heavy marble surroundings rather suffocating. Some elves do live at the Sanctuary of Mur, high atop the clamor and press of the city. While some citizens grumble about elves considering themselves too good to live in Korvosa, many appreciate their wilderness skills, and are quick to trade for the meat and furs elven rangers bring to sell.

Other Races – Other races are welcome in Korvosa, though they may receive an occasional curious stare every now and then. Still, Korvosa is a city of firm laws and regulations, and in general, races such as minotaurs, dragonborn, and orcs are free to do what they wish, so long as they are not causing any trouble. Trade from foreign nations is an essential component of Korvosa’s economy, so Korvosa’s merchants know it is important not to offend and dissuade potential trade partners. Of course, like any city, there are some racists. The guard does their best to stamp out such offenders, but the occasional race-related offense is inevitable in a city of Korvosa’s size.


Korvosa, City of Fangs Rades