Sunday, March 2, 2008

Regional Perspective

Hooray for Google Earth!
  1. Zor and Baalgad. Zor is the southern power base and Baalgad, as we can see, is defender of a couple things. Travel from Zor to Baalgad is tortuous, even today. There is no direct route, but rather a meandering way around hills and valleys that is so complex, I won't attempt to map it (nor has anyone else). Lets just say that Baalgad is very isolated, while at the same time, food has to get to market and people find a way. Note that Zor in modern times is connected, while in ancient times (and in our campaign), it's an island with suburbs on the mainland. Only by filling it in to create a bridge was it ever conquered and that took many months.
  2. The Seat of All High. Baalgad defends this holy sight. It also would make sense that our shadowfell gateway is near this area. Perhaps the area is especially holy because there are religious defenses that keep the gateway closed, or whatever is there in check. Maybe it's a bit like the Fifth Element, where a lineage of priests watches and protects, but is mostly forgotten. Perhaps it is the same family or lineage that owns the keep. It would be very easy for such knowledge to be lost or pushed to the side amidst national calamity or events, kind of like knowledge of the Ring of Power in Lord of the Rings. It's only after terrible things begin happening that the powers that be take notice. Note that the geography of this "mountain" is actually three separate peaks.
  3. The Fertile Valley. Defending this valley is likely why the keep was built. We have the fertile valley with lots of essential agriculture, driven by rainfall from The Seat of All High, and we have Lake Gennesaret (The Sea of Galilee) at the opposite end of Baalgad, a major source of fish. I've thought of changing the name, but all I've found are Hebrew and Arabic names for the sea, so Galilee is just as appropriate.
  4. Badlands to the North. As far as I can tell, it looks pretty barren north of Baalgad. My guess is it's ogre territory.
The Purpose of the Citadel:
  1. The Secret Reason: To keep an eye on the shadowfell.
  2. The Public Reason: To protect the fertile valley in times of strife. The Tashtak (Syrians in the real world) could invade from the far south where the mountain ranges end.
  3. The Current Reason: To keep the ogres to the north at bay and act as an early warning for the region.

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