Welcome to PathfinderWiki. In order to curtail spam, editing is restricted to registered users only. Please request an account here.

Kaer Maga

From PathfinderWiki
Jump to: navigation, search
Kaer Maga
The city of Kaer Maga
(City)
Titles The Asylum Stone
City on the Cliff
The Hex
City of Strangers
Nation Varisia
Size Small city
Population 8,000
Demographics 5,500 humans, 500 halflings, 400 dwarves, 400 half-elves, 400 half-orcs, 200 gnomes, 100 elves, 100 orcs, 75 trolls, 50 centaurs, 50 nagas, 175 others
Government Anarchy
Alignment Chaotic neutral
Leader Horus Ilaktya, High Priestess Shamalay Kasan, Merriman Ardoc

Source: City of Strangers

Standing atop one of the highest spots of the Storval Rise, the cliff-top city of Kaer Maga[1] (pronounced kare MAH-gah)[2] is built inside the ruins of an ancient fortress: a six-sided ring of 80-foot-high seamless stone, stretching more than a half mile in diameter and topped with towers of every shape and design.[3] Also known as the Asylum Stone, Kaer Maga has served as a refuge for exiles, misfits, and ne'er-do-wells fleeing persecution and prosecution for thousands of years, and is known throughout Golarion as a place where anyone can fit in, and where anything can be bought and sold.[4][5][6]

Contents

History

The stone ring of Kaer Maga is incredibly ancient. It even predates the Empire of Thassilon; the ring was discovered by the original Runelord of Greed during his first survey of his new kingdom of Shalast.

At that time the ring was inhabited by the mysterious creatures not found anywhere else. The Runelord named them the caulborn, and entered into an alliance with them. The Runelord supplied them with intelligent creatures on which they could “feed”, and the caulborn supplied the Runelord with prophetic visions of the future. The caulborn told Runelord the city was called Kaer Maga – a name which predated even them.

The Runelord populated the city with criminals, dissidents and any others he could readily spare. The population grew as new citizens were born in the city, and the Runelord decided to use vampires to police the ever-increasing population. Guided by the caulborn's prophecies, Shalast prospered.

The caulborn correctly predicted the arrival of the Starstone, and retreated beneath the city with some of the guards and prisoners. They did not bother to warn the current Runelord of Greed, the archmage Karzoug, of the impending disaster.

The fall of the Starstone broke the city’s wards, allowing the inhabitants to come and go as they pleased. They somehow weathered the Age of Darkness, and the city gained a reputation for self-sufficiency and a willingness to accept all who came to the city seeking sanctuary.

Today, the city survives mainly on trade, as the surrounding lands are largely unsuited to agriculture. Its reputation for accepting all comers has resulted in an extremely cosmopolitan population, and the tradition of self-sufficiency has translated into an unwillingness to accept any central authority over the city as a whole.[7]

Inhabitants

For a complete list, please see: Category:Kaer Maga/Inhabitants

Though an anarchic "civilization", a loose consortium of groups, gangs, and families rule the people of Kaer Maga. The entire city is a melting pot of citizens from all cultures, such as the Ardoc family of Bis; the Brothers of the Seal, who are ready to kill each other over whether or not they should open the great portal they guard somewhere deep in the caverns beneath; the gently whistling Sweettalkers of Tian, with their lips sewn shut to keep them from uttering the true name of their god; the Augurs, troll seers who predict the future by casting divinations with their own intestines; and the bloatmages, with the leeches that keep them alive attached to their bulging bodies.[3]

Kaer Maga is one of the main halfling settlements in the Inner Sea Region; halflings are the second most populous race in the city. Kaer Maga is one of the places escaped halfling slaves find welcoming. Halflings often join the Freemen of the Bottoms or live in the Halfway Houses in the Warren.[8]

The city also has a sizeable population of mindless undead, sometimes referred to as the Twice-Born. [9]

Religion

Worship in Kaer Maga is as diverse as the population. Any sect or cult willing to accept the city’s “live and let live” philosophy is tolerated here. The most notable religions are described below.

The most popular faiths are those of Abadar and Asmodeus, as they both believe in the sanctity of contracts and the importance of meeting obligations – vital in an otherwise anarchic city that nevertheless relies heavily on trade. Both faiths in the city emphasis order and are much less concerned with ethics – something which can attract the ire of clerics from outside the city, who see this as unduly neglecting key elements of faith.

Calistria’s sacred prostitutes can be found in the red light districts and especially in the Hospice section of the city, but the clergy stay out of the city’s politics.

Worship of Cayden Cailean is common amongst the city’s lower classes, and in the Bottoms in particular. The clergy is heavily associated with the Freemen, making them unwelcome with the slave traders. However, the religion is also popular amongst the local mercenaries, which discourages others from taking action against it.

The city’s arcanists tend to worship Nethys. The faith’s tendency to see all sides of an issue also gives it an advantage in Kaer Maga's constantly shifting political scene.

Worship of Pharasma is centred in the Godsmouth Ossuary in the Bottoms district. The bards of the Lyceum tend to revere Shelyn. Clerics of Shelyn also keep an eye on some of the more extreme establishments in the Hospice, to ensure they are not moved to the sado-masochistic faith of Zon-Kuthon. Worship of Urgathoa is common amongst the necromancers of Ankar-Te, and is particularly popular amongst the city’s small leper population.

Two religions which are not welcome in Kaer Maga are the faiths of Sarenrae and Iomedae, as they are generally viewed as troublemakers. Worshippers are ostracised everywhere apart from the Bottoms.[10]

Geography

The city is divided into 11 districts. 8 of them are contained within the hollow stone ring, and are known collectively as the Ring districts. The other 3 are in the city’s open central area, and are known as the Core districts.

There is also a great network of underground tunnels and chambers known as the Undercity.[11]

A rough map of Kaer Maga

Ring Districts

Core Districts

  • Downmarket; the city’s main commercial district
  • Hospice; the hospitality district
  • Widdershins; a quiet neighbourhood where everyone acts correctly – or else![13]

Trade

Most of Kaer Maga's trade is in the exotic, or items which are illegal elsewhere, since basic items are produced more efficiently and cheaply in one of Varisia’s other cities. The city does not attract passing trade, as it is not on a trade route to anywhere else, but is a destination in its own right.

One of the city’s main imports is grain from the lowlands around Korvosa. Goods travel by ship to Palin's Cove, then head north by caravan to the Yondabakari River. It then travels by barge to Kaer Maga. The alternative route, is to travel by ship to Magnimar and then by barge along the river for the rest of the journey. This route is much longer, but removes the need for an overland stage.

When the river reaches the Storval Rise, merchants can either blaze their own trail up the dangerous river gorge, or pay the Duskwardens in order to use the more efficient Halflight Path.

Caravans arriving from the north, for instance from Riddleport have the option of reaching the Storval Plateau via the Storval Stairs, but that route then requires many days of travel through the hostile Cinderlands. [14]

References

  1. A large poster map of the city can be found in the Shattered Star Poster Map Folio
  2. Erik Mona et al. (2008). Campaign Setting, p. 246. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-112-1
  3. 3.0 3.1 James L. Sutter and Paizo Staff. (2007). Seven Swords of Sin, p. 29-31. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-050-6
  4. James L. Sutter. (2010). City of Strangers, p. 4-5. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-248-7
  5. F. Wesley Schneider, Amber E. Scott, Tork Shaw, James L. Sutter, and Jerome Virnich. (2012). Varisia, Birthplace of Legends, p. 25. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-453-5
  6. Adam Daigle and James L. Sutter. (2012). Rise of the Runelords Anniversary Edition Player's Guide, p. 9. Paizo Publishing, LLC.
  7. James L. Sutter. (2010). City of Strangers, p. 3-4. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-248-7
  8. Hal Maclean and Amber E. Scott. (2010). Halflings of Golarion, p. 15. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-278-4
  9. James L. Sutter. (2010). City of Strangers, p. 8. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-248-7
  10. James L. Sutter. (2010). City of Strangers, p. 36-38. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-248-7
  11. James L. Sutter. (2010). City of Strangers, p. 4-5. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-248-7
  12. James L. Sutter. (2010). City of Strangers, p. 5. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-248-7
  13. James L. Sutter. (2010). City of Strangers, p. 5. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-248-7
  14. James L. Sutter. (2010). City of Strangers, p. 36. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-248-7


Personal tools
Namespaces

Variants
Actions
Navigation
Toolbox
Visit the Pathfinder Online Wiki