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  • A Brief Description of Glacier City

    Divided, it stands... somehow. An ancient, revered place filled with equally irreverent people.

    Moderator: Shiro

    A Brief Description of Glacier City

    Postby Shiro » Tue Aug 06, 2019 9:05 am

    [WIP]

    Glacier City is among the oldest continuously inhabited locations on the vast Island of Dragos. Founded well before the Empire itself formed, what is now Glacier City is nonetheless its most ancient precursor. In the eons after the Cataclysm of legend, the area provided a vast defensible network of cliffs and hardy forests to hide from the rampaging dragons until the Ralgons developed strong enough methods and technology to fight them. When hyper-aggressive bugs also emerged from the Great Swamp ravaged the countryside and destroyed entire nations after 1000 AN, the sheer cliffs provided natural fortifications to fend off waves of the insects, and the people in this area were the least unscathed from this plague, until at the beginning of the Great Swamp War the Ralgon peoples drove them back -- and, in the aftermath, united in the years immediately afterwards to keep their mutual enemies in check since they could not be totally destroyed at the time. Even after giant versions emerged after the Great Atomic Bombardment, it was thanks to the vast Ralgon fortifications that the island remains inhabited by sentient beings.

    Geology

    The peninsula that contains the metropolis consists almost entirely of odd topography. The region formed eons ago following a great cataclysm in the region. The entire peninsula rose out of the ocean over the course of countless years, propelled upwards by volcanic activity underneath that shifted to another region long ago due to the pressure buildup. The vast inland cliffs that now host the city's massive core are made of granite, with it being frequently quarried and mined for diamonds and other precious stones where strict regulations allow. he metropolitan area meets a hard border in the north with a steep descent from the cliffs into the vast, fertile plains of Nixtorm and the coastal hills of Eastern Stormhold.

    The beach consists of similar terrain and in its few undeveloped areas (thanks to wealthy patrons), black sand beaches abound in the area. In the heart of this region lies an ancient, extinct volcano that stands alone after it blew off its peak eons ago during the same cataclysm that forms the cliffs. In the millennia since, volcanic flows have originated elsewhere, coming from below the ocean and contributing to the black beaches. Geologists believe that this region is geologically very young, despite its present and total volcanic extinction. That they can agree on is that this area was settled not long after it took on its present form because of the presence of numerous myths and legends that seem to corroborate this theory.

    The Imperial Palace (Summer Residence)

    The extinct volcano inland contains a vast caldera lake that is replenished by near-constant, cool rain in the summer months and kept warm during winter to the still-present heat from underground. The area remains cool year-round, thanks in part to the vast rims of the volcano which rise almost another 500 meters above the caldera lake itself, as well as the caldera's elevation and the deep water in its lake. The caldera, despite its low profile on the mountain, still sits at 2,500 meters above sea level, contains an island in the basin formed by the ancient eruption. This island is now host to the nexus of this entire metropolis: the Emperor's Summer Palace, larger than all the rest combined. The caldera lake itself is roughly three square miles, and the palace covers the center of it. With construction on the inner walls of the volcano and anything along the mountain faces above the base being forbidden, a ring of old buildings surrounding the caldera lake have gone up instead to service the vast palace, covers the entire central island.

    Between its sprawling lush exotic gardens, vast halls, and very well-concealed fortifications, the palace is truly a marvel to behold. The only way in and out of the palace was historically a natural cave through which the current complex was discovered and used as a holy place eons ago. Since then, a well-secured road has been built in its place and the cave structurally secured. Access to this palace is ironically even more restricted than the one which houses most of the central government in Stormhold. Unlike there, this is considered a holy place in both folklore and for the Ralgon religion. Only the Emperor select members of the royal family are permitted access of any kind. On-site servants are usually hired for life from the priesthood (with exceptions) and rarely leave the complex (with other exceptions), as they have everything they could want there. Since the volcano rim sits too high for the bugs to ever reach (before they suffocate from thin air) and the dragons never reached the mountaintop due to the terrain devoid of food, the caldera was untouched at any point by these attacks after the Cataclysm.

    The site where the Imperial Palace now sits also houses one of the oldest temple complexes on the island, with its twin's location (thought to be a similar complex built in similar circumstances) now being lost to time. The temple itself is only accessible by the Emperor, the Crown Princes, certain members of the priesthood, and their immediate servants. Visits are theoretically allowed by foreign dignitaries, although this hasn't ever happened to date, as none have ever been considered morally pure enough to approach it. All others have been brutally executed for the offense of defiling their most sacred ground, since breaches of this and a small other handful of holy sites are always exempt from diplomatic immunity agreements. All those visiting without permission are executed on the spot. When the Emperor is present, this even goes so far as to include members of tour groups who stray from their party and go into a building they clearly aren't supposed to. It ironically for this reason (the area's status as one of Ralgon's most sacred places) that even the previous Emperor of the Ralgons, Nobunaga IV, rarely visited -- even if this practice is somewhat frowned upon by the priesthood.

    Glacier City Port Complexes

    The largest port on the continent, this vast complex dwarfs all others in the region. With the peninsular metropolitan area consisting of almost a fifth of the entire country's population, this micro-region boasts a vast population of almost 40 million people. Almost 10 million live in the city's core at the southern end of a peninsula punctuated by high rocky cliffs and abnormally abundant waters filled with fish of every kind. The massive core of the city consists of massive, inter-connected high-rise buildings meant to reduce urban overcrowding and facilitate further growth in the metropolitan area's crowded environs. All buildings are topped with vegetation on every single roofing space, and are topped with as a vast underbelly that houses both its truly extensive infrastructure as well as the city's poorer population of roughly 15 million (which rarely see sunlight

    Recently, the port was slowly opened to the rest of the world. Its safety of entry, its many large natural harbors, the city's massive working population and economy, as well as its strategic location at the end of the Island of Dragos make this the ideal location for a large port such as this one. Ever since the port opened, it has acted as a nexus between the northern regions of the continent of Cibola and the rest of the world, boosting the vast city's economy even further. Even with international trade being a recent thing, the port's sheer capacity for trade and storage has made the region an incredibly attractive one for major trading fleets that now come and go many times a day. At this time, Glacier City is the only region within the Ralgon Empire where all countries are permitted to visit and trade in both its sea and air ports... pending thorough ship and aircraft inspections upon both arrival and departure for most foreign traders and passengers.

    The cliffs themselves serve as ways for laborers to make the commute between the city's underbelly where they live, and the massive port facilities where almost half of the city's day laborers work. The port itself consists of the expanded beachfronts and the many rocky natural harbors below. The port districts themselves make up only about 15% of the city's land area, but almost half the laborers work here. The port forms the primary trade hub between the large cities of Stormhold, Mashiro, and Drag'nor, as well as the sprawling suburban and agricultural areas of Nixtorm.

    The Core

    Major City Districts

    The Underbelly and Cliffsides
    Here is Affixed the Signature of:

    His Most Virtuous Excellency,
    Shiro I, Emperor of Ralgon
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