The Volga (Russian: Волга) is a river that flows through central Russia and into the Caspian Sea, making it the longest river on the European subcontinent, Its importance is so pronounced that even after the apocalypse, it waters are still used as trade routes. Following the nuclear contamination of World War III, the river water sustained heavy doses of radiation affecting especially its bottom dwellers.
Factions in the Volga:
Church of the Water Tsar -
A religious sect on the Volga led by Silantius that worships the Tsar Fish, a giant aquatic mutant swimming in the Volga. as they believe it is the one who carries the dead to the afterlife. They are extremely technophobic, and view the use of electric appliances as a mortal sin. While they do trade with certain outsiders, they view most with suspicion, if not outright hostility. In order to join their ranks, one must renounce all technology, which is then either destroyed or stored in a nearby terminal so it can be "purified" by the Tsar Fish. If a cult member breaks the rules, they are usually punished by being forced to do dangerous or even suicidal jobs, such as exorcising electric demons. Their attitude and views are largely shaped by Silantius, their charismatic leader and enforced by his paladins.
Bandits have also set camp in the area, looting traders and harassing the local cult members. Some fanatics states that even having a big numerical advantage, the Tsar-fish guard still loses to them due to their far superior weapons and armour. There is a total of 6 bandit camps on the region.
Hundreds of vehicles of all shapes and sizes from all over the country, abandoned in Mount Yamantau in the Urals. But Why one would ask? The bunker comes into view, a colossal structure built into the side of the mountain, the entrance of which is littered with makeshift vehicles of past travelers taking refuge within the bunker. The bunker was still under construction when the bombs fell. Despite being a classified location, the enemy forces were apparently aware of it, as Yamantau was even more heavily bombed than Moscow, with the area remaining irradiated. Despite this, the bunker remained intact, though its communication antennas were damaged. The government never arrived, and the two thousand or so survivors in the bunker were mostly construction workers, with some communication officers, and a doctor. Due to the bunker still being under construction, however, the food reserves were nowhere near what had been projected. The survivors were soon forced to resort to cannibalism. They eventually managed to fix the antennas. While some wanted to contact other survivors in good faith and trade food in exchange for shelter, it was ultimately decided that the communication system would be used for a more sinister purpose; luring survivors to the bunker and then eating them. The area in front of the bunker came to be littered with the vehicles of people who fell for the broadcast and entered the bunker, never to return.
The Cannibals -
As their name implies, the Cannibals feed on any humans unfortunate enough to visit their bunker. They are mostly made up of construction workers, non-military personnel and a handful of surviving officers, trapped in the bunker when the bombs fell. While the government never arrived, the bunker's inhabitants soon discovered the food reserves were much lower than planned. It was not long until they started resorting to cannibalism to survive. They eventually managed to repair the antennas, and used them to transmit radio signals throughout the wasteland.
They turned their bunker into a Venus fly trap of sorts, luring other survivors to it by posing as the government. While the leadership and officers still retain their wits, most of the Cannibals appear to have gone mad, likely as a result of a neurodegenerative disease such as Kuru (which is spread through cannibalism). One Cannibals note mentions that the Doctor noticed an increase of Prions in his blood, indicating a possible Rabies infection as well. This would make sense, as a cross infection of Kuru and Rabies would theoretically result in an individual going quite mad. They behave as little more than feral animals, driven solely by their need to feast on human flesh. In combat, they will mindlessly charge their opponents with melee weapons, with little sense of self-preservation. While a few do wield firearms, they rarely take cover, standing in the open and wildly firing from the hip.
The Caspian Desert
The Caspian Sea (Russian: Каспийское море) is a large saltwater lake and the world's largest inland body of water located in Central Asia. The desertified area around what is left of it in the Metro universe is known as the Caspian Desert (Russian: Прикаспийская пустыня). Before the war, the Caspian Sea was the largest lake in the world, with a surface area of 371 000 km2. Being away from major populated areas, the region (or at least the northern shore) was spared from nuclear bombing. The hardest was yet to come, however, as the region experienced desertification, and a large portion of the lake dried out, turning the former lake bed and the area around it into a scorching hot desert. Predictably, famine followed, and the surviving population fought over the few resources that remained. In recent years, the region came to be dominated by the Munai-bailer, a raider group that managed to secure the oil reserves and subsequently enslaved most of the local population.
The Munai-bailer -
are a large group of raiders mostly made up of ex-soldiers, mobsters, and Svarog Oil workers who have managed to secure vast oil reserves in the Caspian region. They are one of the few post-apocalyptic factions to not only have access to working vehicles, but maintain a large number of them. They have used these resources to enslave the local population and fend off any other raider groups who made incursions into the region. The Munai-bailer are also noticeably better armed than most bandit groups, sporting advanced weapons like the Bulldog and the Shambler, and even employing armored soldiers with Gatling guns. Recently, they have started styling themselves as "fire gods", presumably to keep their slave population in line. After the Barons death the faction split into a Rebel force under Giul raising some former slaves into a militia and on the other hand The Munai-Bailer selected a new leader under Saul.
(from the Kazakh word meaning Resident, Local, Native)
This Faction was created from Giulnara "Giul" Khakimova (Russian: Гюльнара "Гюль" Хакимова, Kazakh: Гүлнар "Гүл" Хакiмова - the surname is taken from her mother's surname heard in audiolog) or the Witch, as she is referred to by the Munai-bailer, and the freed slaves after Barons death. The Turğındar are not very well equipped compared to the Fire Gods but they learned quickly how to shoot those makeshift guns, even though they are less experienced they will fight fiercly to protect their new accuired freedom, and with Giul as their leader they will try to match the Munai Bailer… Simply put it’s a David vs Goliath bussines.
Also bandits roam the less populated parts of the desert, usually building camps around ruined places or caves. One should take when travelling outside fortified towns alone… There you might encounter except monsters… more treacherous enemies.
This location is being held from utter destruction by a dam holding the extreme radioactive water from swallowing the whole valley… although most pioneers left with Olga some resilient….or stupid, stayed behind. Now bandits are crawling even more than before due to lack of the council, pirates and pioneers trying to hold whatever is left.. deeply forested lands with all kinds of creatures lurking around the corner.
Children of the Forest
are a group of children who were stranded at a scout camp when World War III occurred. Raised by their camp master, whom they have come to call "Teacher", they developed the skills necessary to survive any threat the wilderness may present. Be that the changing weather, fierce creatures, bandit attacks, or unwelcome guests. They formed a tribe in post-apocalyptic Kazakhstan, created sometime after 2013. Children of the Forest wear primitive clothes made from items found in nature, similar to the nomadic tribes of the past. The faces of cult members are hidden by masks made from the skulls of mutants in order to instill fear in the hearts of their enemies. As hinted at by their name, they tend to live in woodlands and other areas that remained clear far from the urbanized centers of humanity's former glory now poisoned by radiation.
The Children of the Forest developed a justice system called the Forest Court that is mostly used to judge outsiders and trespassers to determine whether they are hostile or not. If they are not hostile, they are allowed to pass through the territory peacefully while the hostile ones are either imprisoned or executed.
As the attacks of bandits intensify overtime, resulting in the death of many members, the Children of the Forest become divided into two subgroups with conflicting views of the Teacher’s lessons: the Pioneers and the Pirates.
prefer to lead a peaceful and isolated lifestyle and only kill bandits while letting peaceful trespassers pass through. And their weapon of choice or maybe of necessity is the Crossbow, they may lack proper firearms .
on the other hand actively attack strangers and engage in looting as well as ignoring the Forest Court multiple times. Compared to Pioneers who use predominantly crossbows the Pirates have acquired firearms from killing bandits or other nefarious deeds.
Before the war, Lake Baikal was the largest freshwater lake in the world by volume, containing 22-23% of the world's fresh surface water. It is also the world's deepest lake, with a depth of 1642 m, as well as the world's oldest lake.
The Colony of Apollo:
Here near Lake Baikal nearing the end of my voyage! Lies the Colony of Apollo (Apollo is the Olympian god of the sun and light, music and poetry, healing and plagues, prophecy and knowledge, order and beauty, archery and agriculture. An embodiment of the Hellenic ideal of kalokagathia, he is harmony, reason and moderation personified, a perfect blend of physical superiority and moral virtue.) on contrast of the Aurora the goddess of dawn.. which now makes our town center. This colony is home for Me, Anna and the rest of the crew who took the journey with us. Although small in numbers yet, it is ever growing with new settlers, and for protection we can always count on our Spartans! , Although now we have created a local militia whom we helped train, since we are but few… our Headquarters at the Aurora has since been extended with makeshift protective walls, even a watch tower from an old abandoned light house… Krest doing most of the mechanical work of course..Hence we are here trying to make the best of what we have, always looking out for surprises.
Nearby Lake Baikal is Irkutsk, one of the largest cities in Siberia. Although Irkutsk was never hit by any bombs during World War III, the lower part of the city has been flooded. A number of different, and sometimes conflicting, factions of human survivors persist there. Irkutsk is also home to some unique mutant species.
The indigenous people of this region, who formed a group around the Kazan Church. After the apocalypse they have been left in isolation, living a basic life from what the land provided. They are not very fond of newcomers since they had a couple of bad instances… although hostile to newcomers and tribal like appearance they seem to be reasonable in fact.
Newcomers from different places came and created a pretty successful trade in the area, Trappers, dealing not in fur, thanks to the forested areas that are home to some exotic mutants, and large numbers of humanimals, which they sell as “animals of burden”. Humanimals can be tamed, and make an excellent pool of cheap labor due to their strength and low food consumption. Humanimal trapping and domestication has become a major part of local economy, where the beasts are captured, domesticated or tamed, then sold to traders from the south. Despite survivors often deriding their intelligence, it appears that humanimals can learn rather quickly, as evidenced by comments from trappers who hunt them. They also have entertainment value as they can also be trained as gladiators and pit fighters.