Adam’s Retroverse DM Blog: Entry 9

Entry 9: Quadrant Contents - Feynomena and The Aurakian Badlands

 

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     One final entry to round up the Quadrants of this particular face! I’m going to cover both the southern- and southeastern-most Quadrants, Feynomena and the Aurakian Badlands, respectively.

     When cobbling together Feynomena, I wanted to concentrate on the most influential works of high-, mid-, and low-fantasy in my life and throw them in a blender. There are some wildcards, too!

 

  • Feynomena. All Quadrants on the Cube of ‘Verse 19, especially those of Face 5, are “fantastic,” sure, but NONE of them are as affected by and tied to the flavor of Fantasy more than the realm of Feynomena. A land of Elves, Dwarves, Fairies, mythological figures and creatures, magic, mystery, and the occasional dinosaur, it captures the essence of childlike imagination, but hold fast. This place has its perils, too.

 

  • Ivory Tower. Rising like a beacon above the expansive Plains Ad Infinitum is the Ivory Tower. This pearly spire juts into the sky in the center of this Quadrant at a height rivaling the Aesir Peaks of Hyperborea. From the top of its tower, the immortal and wise White Wizard keeps the peace across all of Feynomena and listens to the troubles of those who successfully cross the Plains Ad Infinitum, answering questions and doling out advice as he sees fit. One does not simply cross the Plains Ad Infinitum. Without the proper knowledge, one could travel towards the tower for years at any speed and by any mode of transport…and never get any closer, yet immediately return to the starting point of their journey the instant they take one step back.

 

  • Heraclea and Xenea are warring nations in the west/northwest that are reminiscent of Ancient Greece. They keep to their respective sides of the small gulf dividing them and fight over whose ancient hero was greater and whose adventures were more legendary.

 

  • The Arcane College of Hoghold at Scholomance is a university of magecraft and wizard magic that divides its students into their chosen magical majors and then residentially into Covens named using letters of the alphabet from neighboring Heraclea and Xenea in honor of the countries providing guards for the school’s protection.

 

  • The Seven-Tiered City. A tiered city made of marble hugging the side of a mountain in the north that was supposedly copied and ripped directly from its universe of origin. Contains a famous “antique” camera shop.

 

  • Lomond. High atop a mesa in the northeast there is a lone loch of water within the purview of a hermitic nation of Dwarves. Its waters hail from the Civic River which flows from the Sea of Peace and through the Megalopolitan Plains. The reservoir is held back by a large stone dam in the south which controls the flow down into the Land of a Thousand Bads and harnesses the kinetic energy of the falling water to power the bellows of the dwarven nation’s mighty forges.

 

  • Land of a Thousand Bads. An expansive, dusty maze of canyons, streams, and Orc warbands who are in conflict with the Dwarven nation of Lomond.

 

  • Haira [/ˈhaɪrɒ/] is a nation of many various peoples who are adjusting to their new lives and surroundings in the Retroverse while also working hard to fulfill the whims of their aging Elven King.

 

  • The Guarding Forest contains the largest population of Elves on Face 5. They are wardens of nature, and as such are wary of anyone who enters their forest. They have heard of the “horrific” industrialization in Fabrication Flats and will die protecting their home from such “wanton defilement” of nature.

 

  • Jimunja Tropics is a lush jungle filled with ancient temples, wild and deadly beasts, beautiful songbirds, and, of course, dinosaurs! Not all of which are terrible lizards! On the western end of the peninsula that plays host to this rainforest sits Ceran City, where Cerans have embraced a somewhat peaceful suburban lifestyle!

 

     The inspiration for the Aurakian Badlands came from my love for the roughness of deserts. See, Solarian Sands encompasses all things mysterious and mystical about deserts (plus a fair share of danger), and I couldn’t, in good conscience, put all desert-related ideas I had into that single quadrant. It would simply muddle the aesthetic. All my other ideas surrounding deserts were jagged, deadly, chaotic, and built around the idea of “survival.” They deserved a place of their own.

 

  • Aurakian Badlands. This parched land is a desert Quadrant similar to its northern neighbor, the Solarian Sands. Bearing many features and biomes mimicking the Great Basin Desert of North America and the “Red Centre” of Australia’s Outback, life here often finds itself in a fight for survival, teetering on the edge of an oversized Bowie knife in a dangerous, dystopian, desertpunk world.

 

  • Slomannyy Plateau is the “motherland” for the Socialist Steam Republic of Slomannyy (SSRS). This monarchy-turned-communist state was once the wealthiest in all of the ‘Verse in its little northwestern corner of the Aurakian Badlands. Now, its dieselpunk skyship armada is a mere rusted remnant of its past shining prowess. Unlike the rest of the Aurakian Badlands, Slomannyy Plateau is less of a desert and more of a dry savannah. This is a land where the glorious wonders of steam serve and protect the proletariat. Military service is mandatory, as the state has warned its faithful citizenry of capitalistic hawks…and dragons…who seek to plunder the state and put an end to the peoples’ revolution.

 

  • Bunker Town is “classified.” All that can even be confirmed about this high-tech military base/city-state is that it sits just south of the Slomannyy Plateau at the edge of the Land of a Thousand Bads, is populated entirely by members of the elite and well-equipped paramilitary force, the DRAKEs, and their Tesla Dragon general/chief scientist. Their motives are mostly inscrutable, but it can be certain that they are far from friendly towards the SSRS.

 

  • Vroom Vroom. Between Bunker Town and Mos Grabah sits Vroom Vroom. You wanted biker kobolds? Congratulations, this is how you get biker kobolds. If you wanted a zanier, more ramshackle version of a “town” set in dystopian Australia, but with kobolds, here you go. Hope you’re happy.

 

  • Mos Grabah. South of the central Worm Drifts is an elite spaceport ruled by the Sultan and his royal family. This futuristic city provides the one official link between Face 5 and outer space. Many captains and pilots dock here to trade, drink, relax, and travel to other nations to do on-world business. Mos Grabah General Order 1, or the “non-interference directive,” generally outlaws the piloting of any space-faring vessel within the atmosphere of Face 5 to prevent corruption and dangerous, unnatural technological leaps made by civilizations who “aren’t ready for the mantle of space.”

 

  • Port Silvertooth. A short time ago a goblin named Jidainkle Silvertooth was copied and pasted into the Retroverse, as the plane is wont to do from time to time as it wobbles on its axis. This dapper entrepreneur found that the Aurakian Badlands needed some more fun and entertainment. “An oasis in the desert!” he announced as he broke ground at the tip of the Quadrant’s southeastern peninsula. Thus began the construction of a city of casinos, bars, and other forms of entertainment which has since thrived in the desert, attracting people from all over to come try their hands at various games and lose—I mean win jackpot upon jackpot of credits! Hiveborn serve as the city’s sworn protectors. They firmly believe the multitudes of neon lights that bathe Port Silvertooth to be divine. They preach that staring into the celestial glow will inspire a spiritual apotheosis in those who safely keep their distance.

 

  • Worm Drifts. Spanning for many miles in the center of the Aurakian Badlands are the Worm Drifts. Great earthworms plow underneath the loose dunes, and woe befalls those who attract their attention by making vibrations on the ground. Also severely lacking in water, this land is inhospitable to nigh all except birds, who could still be blindly gobbled up by summoning one of the b brutes after errantly cracking a beetle’s shell upon a rock.

 

  • Polyhedral Mesas. Seven large mesas occupy the northeastern portion of this desert. They are so named for their distinct and perfectly symmetrical polyhedral shapes.
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