The Long Winter Campaign will feature a number of small, stone fortifications, represented by castles on the Outdoor Survival map. These fortifications are commonly called kargs, taken from the dwarven word for stone fortifications, usually built in mountainous regions. In the post-Cataclysmic world, karg specifically refers to a pre-Cataclysmic stone fortification, which is probably at least partially in ruin, but still livable.
The Outdoor Survival Map; most of the castle icons represent kargs
The Spells of Ending damaged nearly every fortification and city in the region. Yet, despite their dilapidated state, kargs still present the strongest possible defense. Not even the dwarves posses the engineering skills to build such formidable structures in the post-Cataclysmic age. So, most damaged kargs are still in use, their breaches repaired as best as possible with wooden palisades and ramparts piled from ancient rubble.
A mad wizard’s tower-karg.
Kargs are typically small-ish forts, built at strategic points, and capable of supporting a few dozen soldiers at most. During the Old Empire, kargs served as fortified watchtowers and outposts, protecting this border province from barbarian incursions and goblinoid raids. In the Cataclysmic age, a karg represents an extremely powerful fortification, usually home to a lord, or the headquarters for some powerful faction (such as the Paladins, Rangers or Druids). Some of the more remote kargs have fallen into the hands of the monstrous races, the powerbase for an ambitious orc warlord or a goblin pretender king.
This karg is larger than most.
They typically have small ‘dungeons’ for the keeping of prisoners and storing of provisions. In many cases, these dungeons have been expanded to store additional supplies for the long winters. A handful of the old Imperial kargs were built on the ruins of even older fortifications, and the process of expanding their dungeons to accommodate more supplies exposed long-sealed depths. Some lords may permit adventurers to more fully explore these deeper dungeons…in exchange for a share of any treasures recovered, of course.
And this karg needs a little work.
Finally, it should be noted that new stone kargs cannot be built. No one, not even the dwarves, retains the knowledge to build such solid structures ( wooden palisade forts, on the other hand, can be easily built). So, if you want a nice, stone fort, you need to go out and find one, and then you’ll probably have to take it from its current tenants. This provides an opportunity for the players to get into the kingdom building game, if they so choose. All those pre-positioned stone forts make nice targets for would-be warlords.