Venerable home of the dwarves on the southern island of Ektau, Altgrimmr is a mountain-hold that is but partially occupied by its current inhabitants, who number perhaps as many as twenty thousand dwarves. The winding tunnels and deep delvings are only somewhat explored by its current citizenry, and the more adventurous among them are always arranging expeditions into the depths. Dwarves know more than most of the dangers of digging too deep, however, and these expeditions often have a character as much of dread as of anticipation.

While the nominal capital of the dwarves in the Sunset Isles is in Angrimmr, far to the north, the writ of the High King there rarely has great force this far south. King Hargrimm of Altgrimmr rules his hold with the help of the elders of its constituent clans, and very few affairs have anything about them that might require the High King's sentiments be consulted. Most of the local dwarven efforts are put towards keeping the goblinoid tribes in check in the surrounding Altgrimmr Mountains.

The underground city itself is an ancient one, with dwarven legends claiming it as the first dwarfhold in the Sunset Isles. Some dreadful calamity a thousand years ago is supposed to have driven the dwarves north to their current capital at Angrimmr, but details of this catastrophe have not survived the ensuing centuries. While colonists returned to Altgrimmr some four hundred years ago, the hard fighting and scanty food has prevented much effort from being turned towards exploring the half-abandoned city. With the rice now grown in the lowlands being traded for dwarven goods, more attention is being turned towards such explorations. Young dwarves are often eager to explore the forgotten galleries and deep cuttings of the mountain in hopes of finding more enlightening records of their past.

The Altgrimmr Mountains that surround the deep city have their share of lesser dwarven holds abandoned at the same time as Altgrimmr once was. With the original clans that occupied them now dead or hopelessly scattered, they promise rich rewards to those with the courage to find and explore them. Many now shelter goblinoid tribes, and those that don't are often occupied by things far worse. Dwarves do not greatly appreciate strangers plundering the abandoned holds of their folk, but provided an adventurer does not defile the dead within and returns any historical information found, they're generally willing to overlook it as "salvage and retrieval".

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