Minata is the massive archipelago located on the far southeastern edge of the continent of Tian Xia, also known as the Wandering Isles or the Minata Archipelago. It is home to the Tian ethnicity called the Tian-Sing.1
Minata is located in the southeastern part of Tian Xia. To the west, past a sea, lies the nation of Xa Hoi and the trackless Valashmai Jungle.2 Geographically, Minata is divided into three regions. From north to south, they are:
- Atas Pulu
- The northernmost and most successfully exploited part of Minata is home to the shattered and dormant Mount Shibotai, whose eruption in -2524 AR blanketed Tian Xia in ashes; since then, the volcano has been quiet.3
- Tengah Pulu
- The largest region of Minata, characterised by mountainous jungles. The largest island, known as Belem, is famous for numerous hidden coves and treacherous shoals.3
- Rendah Pulu
- The southernmost and most feared part of Minata due to its inhabitants.3
Navigators from Tian Xia have attempted to map the isles to no avail, as the islands themselves seem to shift place, never appearing twice in exactly the same location.4
According to legends, in the primordial days of Golarion, Minata was once a great land bridge connecting Tian Xia with Sarusan. In this age, it was ruled by the mythical Taumata civilisation before Hei Feng came down to punish them for blasphemy. He tore Minata apart with his nine-ring broadsword, then scattered the islands on the Okaiyo Ocean. While this history is often considered to be nothing more than a fanciful myth (as is the very existence of a land bridge between Tian Xia and Sarusan), explorers often discover strange relics and architecture following no known Tian style.3
In -2524 AR, the volcano known as Mount Shibotai erupted5 forming the Shibobeka Islands while covering much of Tian Xia in volcanic ash. This coincided with the emergence of wayangs onto Golarion from the Netherworld.3
One of Minata's most recently formed communities is Zo Piaobo, a floating city formed in the aftermath of the fall of Imperial Lung Wa. A band of disgruntled former captains from the Lung Wa Navy founded the city in 4609 AR, just three years after Lung Wa's fall in 4606 AR.6
Minata is the most multicultural region of Tian Xia. Many communities in the archipelago are isolated, despite their proximity to other islands, while some others are united under petty monarchs.3
Numerous small kingdoms claim part of Atas Pulu, some merely encompassing a single isle, and trade extensively with the mainland. Numerous wayang tribes also live in Atas Pulu, believing that Mount Shibotai's eruption coincided with their migration from the Netherworld to Golarion. Inahiyi, which sits on the volcano's old caldera, is a wayang city devoted to the appeasement of the demon still believed to live in the flooded crater.3
The city of Zo Piaobo floats between Atas Pulu and Tengah Pulu, and is home to Minata's largest pirate fleet.3 Floating communities of ratfolk known as "Minata Skimmers" live on their floating barge cities and rarely set foot (or paw) on land.7 Minata draws cambions who have left less tolerant parts of Tian Xia that consider them to be inherently evil. While their reputation there is still tainted, they are at least tolerated as long as they do not act with evil intentions.8
Tengah Pulu is home to numerous primitive tribes; while only a few of them practice vile customs like headhunting, cannibalism, or necrophilia, many mainlanders erroneously believe this to be the case for all tribes. The largest city in this region is Waunomani, located on the eastern coast of Belem, which serves as a haven for piracy. Wayangs also live scattered in Tengah Pulu, with the island of Bukorang being exclusively theirs.3
Rendah Pulu is inhabited by demon worshippers and cannibals. The most notorious islands are Lakapuna and Olakapuna, off the coast of the Valashmai Jungle, where monsters, vile sorcerers, and priests live and practice profane rites. Most pirates avoid Rendah Pulu, but it is rumoured that the most intact remnants of Taumata can be found here.3
- The Inner Sea World Guide, 20. Paizo Inc., 2011 .
- “Introduction” in Dragon Empires Gazetteer, 2. Paizo Inc., 2011 .
- “Regions of the Dragon Empires” in Dragon Empires Gazetteer, 31. Paizo Inc., 2011 .
- The Inner Sea World Guide, 207. Paizo Inc., 2011 .
- “Regions of the Dragon Empires” in Dragon Empires Gazetteer, 16. Paizo Inc., 2011 .
- “Regions of the Dragon Empires” in Dragon Empires Gazetteer, 17. Paizo Inc., 2011 .
- “Ratfolk” in Ancestry Guide, 54. Paizo Inc., .
- “Blood of Fiends” in Blood of Fiends, 8. Paizo Inc., 2012 .
- “Life in the Dragon Empires” in Dragon Empires Gazetteer, 60–61. Paizo Inc., 2011 .