Geography, or 'whereiswhatis?HELP!'

Context wise: I’m coming into Empire next year with my partner having already attended a few events this year.

One issue I’m running into, continually, is that I’m struggling with trying to conceptualize where everything is in relation to everything, beyond where my character is from.

This would be fine, but after reading the Summer Solstice Winds of War, I’ve found myself completely turned around and struggling to try to envision how people got places. (Beyond ‘the wizards did it’)

So, some questions:

  1. What are the Spice Gardens and why are they important?

  2. If given the knowledge of ‘Redoubt is the coastal bordering ‘county’ of Urizen and Spiral is something like a landlocked puddle of madness in the middle of Urizen,’ where do other Nations/notable locations sit in relation to that?

  3. If I’ve a character concept that’s travelled on the basis of avoiding trods/seriously active military zones, what major roads are present within the Empire which are commonly used?

(As the character is slotting into a coastal Spire, I’ve no doubt on the use of boats to get places, but with the latest dose of Winds of War, I’m now questioning the viability of ocean travel.)

I have looked at the map, but I’m still not certain of actual locationing…

Thank you in advance

Go on the wiki, then to each nation, into the territories page, there are more detailed maps for each territory. Pulling up the relevant detailed maps has always helped me get my bearings on actions.

These maps might help as they’re way simplified down to just what territories are where:

https://www.profounddecisions.co.uk/empire-wiki/Map_-_Coloured_Territories

In addition to what @Kai_G said the search box on the wiki can be very helpful, so it’s always worth sticking in some search terms there and seeing what you get.

The Spice Gardens are mentioned here - https://www.profounddecisions.co.uk/empire-wiki/Feroz#The_Spice_Gardens_of_Feroz and if you scroll up there’s a zoomed in section of the map that has where they are in Feroz on them. Their importance is mentioned here in the title that the Spice Gardens support - https://www.profounddecisions.co.uk/empire-wiki/Keeper_of_the_Spice_Gardens.

For question two, you’re down in the bottom right hand side of the Empire. Go west from there and you’ll hit Highguard, Sarvos in the League then the Brass Coast. This version of the map may also be useful here - https://www.profounddecisions.co.uk/empire-wiki/Map_-_Empire_Overview. Navarr and the League cities are scattered all over in addition to that.

Three, I wouldn’t recommend a character who avoids the trods as they’re the main “excuse” for why characters can get around the Empire so quickly. Also on this monster map of the Empire, the trods are marked by the green footsteps and a lot of them go via the main roads of the Empire. Why does your character want to avoid the trods btw?

And ocean travel by fast boats, especially along the coast has always been viable even with the recent upswing in Grendel piracy (only in the last year or two?). But small fast passenger boats would normally be able to outrun the pirates so I wouldn’t discount that method.

Oh other thing to keep in mind is river barges up Rivers Scorerro, Vassa, Gancio, Couros and Meade they’re a major method of transport in the south of the Empire.

Does that help? Please do ask any other questions you’ve got :).

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waves hello as a fellow Urizeni and senator for Spiral

So to add to what has already been stated:

Spiral also has a coastline, in Apulus, it is also the furthest South Eastern point of the Empire. beyond it lies the Broken shore, the Druj and a short distance away the Axou on the otherside our borders to the west is basically the River Couros and on the far side of that is Highguard, to our north the Navarr territory of Therunin wraps around Morrow and parts of zenith.

As for the trods, they enhance and soften the impact of travel meaning you feel refreshed each morning as if you had spend a night in the finest beds. Yes its Spring Magic but its a tiny trickle, and as Urizen in general we have very few issues with the use of magic in pretty much any situation, it is the highest discipline.after all. This is only a small amount more magic than is used in Urizen Ushabti. I would be interested to hear why you think you would avoid them, either here or on the field.

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Hello,

Thank you for the links! Especially the simpler maps, I kept on getting lost in details on the other maps. (You’d hardly guess I was originally trained in archaeology and am a Scout leader with my map reading issues…)

Looking at it, avoid is probably a stronger word than I probably should have used. From character perspective, it’s more that there is information that can be gathered from going the slower/more tedious route over the trods. They will likely use them- more for the ease of return journeys with extra documents/writings/plant cuttings, but the l get the feeling, characterwise, that they’d take the slow route out.

Also, as a small tangent/question, can I confirm existence of llamas/alpacas in setting?

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Ahhh “The road less travelled” and all that. Also I don’t think llamas or alpacas as beasts of burden would be out of line - this page might be helpful - https://www.profounddecisions.co.uk/empire-wiki/Mundane_beasts.

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Pretty much on slow boating it along the paths. Meet all interesting sorts of things that way, with interesting more likely aligning with Walsh’s from ‘Firefly’

And thank you again.

Llama’s and Alpaca’s have definitely been discussed as potential Urizeni beasts of burden.

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Oh good

I’m not the only person who had thoughts along the lines of ‘I wouldn’t want to try to get a team of oxen plus wagon up a mountain pass’ (or deal with the sheer volume of fodder that’d take)

Though in Urizen you’d also have the option of a team of Ushabti which are even better when looking to minimise fodder

Ushabti shaped like Llamas! (Although they’d only work in Urizen)

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The people of Tsark (https://www.profounddecisions.co.uk/empire-wiki/Tsark) have llamas, at least.

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I may have suggested this to another person in my group who’s looking at going along the lines of artifice-ing…

(And got a very good laugh out of it)