Approximately 5000 years ago, Eorzean civilization reached what can arguably be considered its peak-at least in the sense of technological advancement and the overall influence on the rest of Hydaelyn-with the advent of the Allagan Empire and its spread north to Ilsabard, east to Othard, and south to Meracydia.
— Encyclopaedia Eorzea Volume I
The Allagan Empire was a technical and magickal marvel for the time it was founded. After the Fourth Umbral Calamity, the Calamity of Earth, the entire empire was buried and lost to history. However, six hundred years ago, A scholar by the name of Coinach dedicated his life to unearthing the secrets to this mysterious empire which had influenced so much of the world for its time, then mysteriously vanished overnight.
Discovering the Civilization
Nearly six hundred years ago, a young Coinach would become obsessed with the legendary Allagan Empire. Not much was known about this empire at the time, only that it was briefly mentioned in the scripture of Nald'thal. Coinach became obsessed with the legends of the Allag, and soon abandoned his studies, despite being at the top of his class and the envy of those around him. He ignored the pleas of his professors and mockery of his peers, focusing only on his goal to unearth what he could about the Allagans.
Five decades after his search began, after funding his work by becoming a merchant and putting every coin he earned into digs, Coinach finally unearthed evidence of the existence of the Allag and their great artifacts in a remote corner of Mor Dhona. Overnight his fortunes changed, being showered with Gil to continue his digs by wealthy investors, while every university across the land begged him to join their staff. Though he would pass away one year later, he would be officially canonized by the followers of Althyk, and his work continued by the Sons of Saint Coinach in Saint Coinach's Find.
The Beginning of the Empire
In the Third Astral Era, following the Calamity of Fire, small communities of survivors began to appear and rebuild. Hesitant to put the gods they worshipped at the center of their society once again, the survivors began to focus on growing as a people. Faith in the gods that had left their prayers for salvation unanswered gave way to faith in the individual. The people began making scientific discoveries and advancements at a rate heretofore unseen in any other era. Civilization grew at a pace unlike any other.
One of the most notable leaders of the Era was Xande. A brilliant scientist and incredibly charismatic, Xande rallied his people and led the way in both science and magic to form a strong nation that focused on her people. While this nation was built on the principals of scientific discovery, Xande did not deny the existence or usefulness of magicks from the previous Era. He welcomed those descended from mages, priests and witches with open arms, giving them the ability to practice and hone their craft for the betterment of society.
While science and technology were advancing at an incredible rate, Xande recognized the potential for magicks and incorporated mages into his army, becoming an unparalleled force that was able to conquer nations with few Allagan casualties. This led to even further growth of the empire. In less than a year of its inception, the Allagan Empire became the largest nation in Eorzean history to date. Xande became the self-appointed emperor of the Allag.
Xande further advanced his newfound society by working with mages and technologists to fuse their two studies into one: a practice known as Aetherochemistry. Once perfected, Aetherochemistry was used in every aspect of life: machina were created to act as soldiers in place of living beings, weapons were created that could shoot missiles further and faster than ever before, with siege engines that could travel further than thought possible. Construction machines that could move stone and blocks thousands of times over their weight capacity sped up the rate at which structures could be built, not to mention the numerous advancements in transportation, communication and manufacturing. The floating settlement of Azys Lla was among one of the more marvelous advancements the civilization made. To power it all, the Allagans created massive spires to capture the energy of the sun and erected them all around the area now known as Silvertear Falls, which in turn delivered energy to the settlements and homes through the massive Syrcus Tower. With the completion of the tower, the Allagan Empire began relying on the various machina to handle day to day life.
Xande was aware that he would someday pass away but did not want to see his life's work amount to nothing upon his death. To facilitate a smooth transition of power, he raised and trained his heirs to continue his legacy. Before his passing, he and his descendants brought the other continents of Othard and Ilsabard under the empire's control with very little resistance. With the continents under the banner of Allag, peace reigned across the land. No wars were left to be fought, so the people could focus on working together for the betterment of their society. For three hundred years, not a single battle was fought across the Great Continents. Shortly after this great unification, Xande passed away. He was entombed in a crystal cave in Mor Dhona, with the hopes that the pure aetheric energy of the crystal would rejuvenate his body and soul someday.
Stagnation of the Allagans
With such leaps and bounds to their society, the Allagan Empire slowly began to stagnate, turning to drink and pleasure over study and growth. Machina took care of the day-to-day life, and pleasure became the focus of the people instead of continuing to innovate. The people became complacent. Despite this, the birthrate slowly but steadily began to drop, while the rate of suicide increased sharply. Leadership amongst the people slowly became absent or turned a deaf ear to its people, resulting in uprisings and insurgencies in the absolute worst of circumstances.
A genius technologist by the name of Amon had long watched the stagnation of the Allagan people, predicting that the empire would collapse under its own weight before long. Amon was of the mind that a strong leader was needed to inspire change in the now indolent people; someone who would light a fire in the heart of the people to drive them to continue the betterment of their society, a leader with the strengths and qualities that the first emperor, Xande, possessed. However, he knew the empire could not sit and wait for a leader with these skills to be born, nor could anyone currently in power be molded to fit this ideal. This left only one option: to resurrect Xande.
While technology existed to temporarily give life to the deceased, Amon knew the empire needed a more permanent solution to prevent this sort of thing from happening again. He began experimenting in the fields of Chimerobiology and cloning to hone his skill to bring back Xande. He began his cruel experiments on insurgents, like General Phlegethon, a resistance general that was a kind man and a champion of the people who rallied resistances against the empire, though history would make him to be a murderer and a villain. He was captured and experimented on, twisted in mind and body to become a servant of the Empire. Amon also experimented on Scylla, a powerful archmage who constantly stood as opposition to him in the imperial court. He promised her unlimited power and immortality if she took part in his experiments. She begrudgingly agreed, however upon waking, she found that while Amon kept his word, she found her head had been substituted by the heads of wild hounds, creatures that she despised most over any other. Amon also had willing volunteers, like Glasya Labolas, the head of the royal guard. Glasya delighted in the crushing of dissidents and opposition. He wanted nothing more than to remain a loyal servant of the empire forever and gave himself to Amon's work. His wishes were granted however the work twisted his already dark mind even further.
Once his experiments bore fruit, Amon began to work on the royal family and himself. he took the blood descendants of Xande, Unei and Doga and cloned them dozens of times to allow him to study them, then put them to work as weapons when he could learn no more from them. Though they appeared physically identical to their originals, they lacked a proper soul. Once his techniques had been mastered, he moved on to the next phase of his plan: unearthing Xande's tomb and resurrecting him. His work finally paid off, and Xande once again walked among the living.
Though Xande had been dead for over a thousand years, he had returned not only immortal, but more powerful and with an 'otherworldly vigor'. Amon briefed Xande about all that had changed since his time: The steady decline of the empire and its people, the loss of purpose and desire to advance and grow. From this, Xande formulated and enacted a plan to right the direction of the empire and any supporters they may have had, starting with the assassination of the current rulers by way of Glasya and the honor guard. From there, he pronounced his rule and set to restoring the Imperial Army to its former size, strength and glory, then set his sights on conquering the land to the south, Meracydia.
As Amon had predicted, this served to invigorate the people of the Allagan Empire. The army continued to expand daily, manufacturers hired more and more people to keep up with the increasing demand for weapons and armor, and scholars were steadily working on new inventions and discoveries.
The Meracydian War
The Allagan Empire began launching wave after wave of attacks on Meracydia. While the initial wave was successful, this was only due to the attack being unexpected. The Meracydian's were determined to not give up their land, and banded together with the Dragons to fight back against the assaults of the empire. Though they were without equal across the Three Continents, the Imperial Army had never faced the power of the Dragons before, and the Bioweapons and technology couldn't stand against the might of the Horde. Their flaming breath easily drove the empire back, and they suffered a great many casualties.
But this only served to further drive the Allagans to advance their technology and magicks. They were able to produce twisted bioengineered horrors such as the Kaliya, which were strong enough to easily slay the Dragon's and even invade further into Meracydia. In a bloody battle, the empire finally managed to slay even the Dawn Wyrm, Bahamut. They believed this would be the final push to claim victory.
The First Summoning
Even with the Dragons all but annihilated, the Meracydian's refused to give up, and turned to their gods for salvation in their darkest hour. Through magicks that had never shown up before in history, the Meracydians were able to invoke the summoning of Eikons. This leads scholars of the current day to believe that there was an outside influence that taught them how to summon their gods to the physical plane, most likely the Ascians. The Meracydians summoned Sephirot the Fiend, Sophia the Goddess, and Zurvan the Demon. These three would come to be known as the Warring Triad. They would use their immense power to drive the Allagan Empire back to the shores of Meracydia.
No matter what they tried, the Allagans could not keep the Warring Triad down. As soon as they were defeated, they would be summoned back to the battlefield and resume their assault. This drove Xande into a rage, demanding a solution from his archmages. Threatening to kill a man for every day the mages didn't find a way to end the threat of the Eikons.
To appease their emperor and to end the assault of the Eikons, the archmages eventually discovered a new branch of magicks that would lay the foundation for modern day summoning, and managed to imprison the Warring Triad, instead of defeating them outright. This was yet another step towards victory for the empire. Despite this, the Meracydians still didn't give up.
The Dusk Wyrm Tiamat, consort to Bahamut was devastated by the loss of her mate and sought to bring him back via the methods employed by the Meracydians. However, what returned to her was but a shade of the Dawn Wyrm. Filled with rage, the reborn Bahamut quickly dispatched any advantage the Allagans had seized.
Xande reveled in the constant back and forth the tide of war took, as he believed someone could only be as strong as the opponents they defeated and welcomed Bahamut's onslaught with open arms. However, with the war invigorating the empire to push themselves even further in both technology and magicks, the war would soon come to an end.
The Pact With the Void
Through study and experimenting, the Allagan Empire eventually learned how to open a portal and commune with Voidsent, leading eventually to the ruler of the Void, the Cloud of Darkness to enter into a pact with Xande, wherein as long as he provided vessels for the Voidsent to inhabit, they would fight his war for him. And so, as the war raged and heavily casualties occurred on both sides, the Voidsent were able to fill the bodies of the fallen and form an army of the undead. The longer the war raged, the larger and larger the army grew, until even the reborn Bahamut could not contend with the sheer numbers. The Allagan Empire captured Bahamut and imprisoned him, affixing him with Neurolinks. This allowed the empire to draw on the Warring Triad and Bahamut’s limitless energy and turned them into a tool for the Empire. Their options and their hope finally extinguished, the Allagans claimed victory and the war came to an end.
The Downfall of the Empire
Despite the war ending in victory, Xande found himself feeling empty. Since dying and being reborn, the emperor had learned the limits of life and the thrill of the edge of death. No longer content with ruling in a time of peace, he had developed a bloodlust and an obsession with slaughter and destruction. And thus did Xande's descent into madness become apparent.
Xande ordered Bahamut to be imprisoned in an iron sphere and launched into orbit around Hydaelyn. Using Bahamut's affinity with fire-aspected aether, they would gather far more energy than the pillars could. He would use that energy to open a stable portal to the Void, where he would invite the Cloud of Darkness to come and rain destruction and death upon the land so he could feel the rush of death he so longed for.
Unei and Doga had initially supported Xande in his second coming and conquest of Meracydia, they learned of his plans and knew they couldn't stand by. Making the decision to oppose him, they gave their souls to a set of their clones as a backup in case they were unable to stop him. The clones, with their directive embedded into their newly obtained souls, became single-minded in their efforts to stop Xande.
Most of the Allagans did not share this destructive belief and led to many of them joining together to form an immense army to stop Xande's destructive aspirations. This move proved to be too little to late, however, as Xande managed to launch the Eikon into the sky and activate the satellite remotely. It began emitting energy to the Syrcus Tower immediately.
Though the tower had been fortified to handle the incoming energy, the ground it sat on could not handle the immense force. The very earth cracked and gave way under the tower, swallowing it whole. Though this was a victory for the rebellion, it was incredibly short-lived. The tower sinking into the ground caused a massive chain reaction across the realm, sundering mountains and splitting the land into pieces, sinking the entire massive empire with it. And so, the Calamity of Earth came to pass.
As a last resort to preserve their lives, Amon cast powerful magicks to stop the flow of time within the tower, lulling the inhabitants, including the clones, into a deep slumber.
Once the Calamity had passed, the civilization of the Allagans was no more. Few survived, among their numbers the most recent blood relative to Xande, a princess named Salina. Realizing the tower was buried but not destroyed, she instead utilized the powers granted to her by her progenitor.
As the last in Xande's bloodline, she was part of the dark pact that he had made with the Cloud of Darkness that states that as long as the bloodline remained intact, the Cloud of Darkness would be kept at bay. With the remnants of Allagan biotechnology, she transferred her blood and the power it contained to a trusted ally, hoping that it would persevere until the day it was needed. Proof of holding this power has become known as the Allagan Eye and can be seen in those with ties to the Miqo'te Seekers of the Sun G-tribe.
The time following the Calamity of Earth has been lost to time and has come to be known as The Forgotten Age.
The tower and the nightmares within would remain buried under Mor Dhona for over five thousand years, until being unearthed by the Seventh Umbral Calamity.