The Empire of Gideon was a continent-spanning civilization which collapsed centuries ago, in 417 BP. At its height, Gideon stretched from its eastern capital of Gideon City to the west coast of Occident, now part of Lasant.
The exact date of Gideon’s rise as an empire is lost to history. Conventional historians date the founding of Gideon City to circa 1200 BP, although Bildhardt the cryptohistorian proposes an exact date of November 10, 1555 BP. (His method of dating, which uses numerology rather than archaeology, is dismissed by most scholars.)
As originally founded, Gideon was a noble republic, in which there was a sharp divide between the upper and lower classes. Upper classes could vote for senators, who met in Gideon City and ruled the nation, while lower classes could vote only for local governors, and had no say in the choice of candidates anyway.
Once Gideon had taken over the smaller tribes and kingdoms across the continent, the Senate became too inefficient to govern the new empire. A charismatic senator named Gul Eeron Vort proclaimed himself dictator-for-life, but proved to be hopelessly evil and corrupt. He was slain by a small band of heroes, one of whom proceeded to declare himself emperor in Gul Eeron Vort’s stead. And so the republic became an empire.
The empire of Gideon prospered, even as the emperors became more and more corrupt over time. Finally, in about 800 BP, the god Avatrunei sent down four scrolls of law for the whole empire to obey. Texts of these four scrolls are still available, although the original scrolls are lost. There was a fifth scroll (as elder dragons recall, and clerics of Avatrunei have confirmed), but it was hidden by the emperor at the time, and no sign of it has ever been found.
The empire was ruled according to these laws for about 400 years, although it drifted further and further away as time went on. In about 550 BP, the emperor proclaimed himself to be a god, and emperor worship held the empire together for about another century and a half.
In 417 BP, on what would be Sectember 1, the government of Gideon fell, and the continent was plunged into chaos. Theories abound as to what, precisely, caused the sudden collapse of Gideon, but without the emperor’s unification, the former empire became hundreds of little fiefdoms locked in struggles for survival and territory, ushering in the Age of Conflict.
Today, the Empire of Gard considers itself the rightful successor state to the Empire of Gideon. It proclaimed Gideon City its capital, but otherwise has very little in common with the old Empire.