It is Year 75, seventy-five long, crazy years after the earth was Sundered, broken into thousands of pieces. The pieces floated, and for the most part remain floating, thank the gods! The floating islands come in all manner of shape and size and climate and are variously called sky islands, land-rafts, sky-burgs, and motes.
Various races have begun to build up territories of islands, linking many together with whatever materials are available. Humans use rope and wood planks for flexibility though they tend to give way when the islands move away from one another. Dwarves have figured out how to run metal through the ropes for greater stability, even holding islands together more effectively, but theirs are prone to rust. Elves create living bridges, which seem to be best. The races have recently been cooperating on this to increase and improve trade routes.
Major city-states are currently Hammerfast (D), Falcrest (H), Harken Forest (E), and WayHolme (Gn). The gnomes are currently working with the dwarves on flying machines for cargo transport (passengers can sometimes catch a ride but must have experience (have served as crew and work) or pay exorbitant sums for their passage).
Magic users are in demand. Current superstitious beliefs fester among the fearful that magic must be used and spells must be cast frequently to keep the islands afloat. Only a few islands have ever fallen, but the consensus was that no magic was cast in recent memory and the magic just ran out, plunging families and whole villages into the unknown below. So magic users are regularly sent out on walkabouts to cast a spell on each and every island in a city-state’s reach.
As for the gods, they didn’t fair much better after The Sundering. Many of the good and unaligned gods have somehow diminished; become less of a force in the world. Consequently clerics and others who draw their powers from their belief in those gods are forced to pray longer into the night to recharge their power than do those of the lawful gods. The malign gods seem not to have suffered; they seem to be more powerful. At least, these days their followers seem to be winning.
Threats to our hard-won way of life are many; Daggerburg Goblins, Blackfang Gnolls, Orcs of Clan Bloodspear, The Gray Company, The Iron Circle, dragons, and lots of weirder things all seem to be working toward one goal: our extinction.