Kazakhstan was a Soviet republic until 1991 when it declared independence from the Soviet Union. It is however still run by the same government implanted during Communist times.
It is considered a major power in Central Asia. The country is also sometimes considered to be part of the Greater Middle East.
In video games, the region is best known for being the main setting for the Strider series. In movies, the country is best known for being the purported homeland of fictional character Borat.