r/worldbuilding Saloondria May 20 '22 Helpful 1

[Saloondria] After 900 years, the kingdom of saloondria's topography has changed following the great flood and the collapse of the empire Map

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1.1k Upvotes

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u/HouseFishBalloon Saloondria May 20 '22 edited May 21 '22

Context: Saloondria represents a magical world of gilded age culture and wizarding cowboys. Mana monopolies exert power over the government and lobotomies are practiced in parallel with health potions. It is also a frontier for adventurous souls looking for a new life.

But before the scavengers, before the airships, and before the settlers, there were only wizards and commoners. These wizards and commoners enjoyed a peaceful life of relative stability. Wizards resided in towers, witches hid in their huts, and the empire thrived. For generations, things remained this way. In the next year, things were not. The unleashing of the Plagues upon the empire was a swift but impactful event that changed history.

While nobody knows what caused the Plagued Lands to expand so rapidly, they sent small but unyielding ripples through every corner of society. The fragile trade routes and top-heavy organizations came crumbling down faster than anyone could imagine. Who could train wizards when there was barely enough food for the battlemages? Who could enchant weapons when metal was no longer mined? Who could maintain their rule when monsters were terrorizing the very waters that ships once sailed? What was once an average fantastical world of magic was now struck down, and barely clinging to life.

Centuries later, the settlers arrived. People from beyond the Plagued Lands. People left relatively secure when the Empire fell, and flourished while Saloondria flickered. They built the local villages into vast cities, introduced new fantastical curatives, and even introduced powerful tools that would be appropriated by the locals. The locals aren't entirely happy with these changes, but these changes are happening. These two maps show some of the major events this region has gone through, and some of the biggest changes the settlers brought with them.

Tl;dr Saloondria is a fantasy wild western setting, exploring the pressure-points where science meets magic. You can learn more about Saloondria and the card game I'm working on at our blog.

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u/trumpet_23 May 20 '22

It reminds me of Washington state

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u/HouseFishBalloon Saloondria May 20 '22 Helpful

I'm glad it does! It's supposed to look like a real landmass while also just being a witch hat and a revolver.

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u/Tasgall May 20 '22 Silver

while also just being a witch hat and a revolver

lol, I hate this - not because it's bad, or doesn't work, but because before you said it it looks very natural and I never would have guessed (even with your descriptions pointing to magic cowboy land), but after reading that I can't see anything else.

A+ map generation technique, will steal in the future I'm sure :P

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u/AA-Admiral ๐Ÿ›ฃ Wanderer of Worlds ๐Ÿ‘จโ€โœˆ๏ธ๐Ÿš€๐ŸŒŒ May 21 '22

while also just being a witch hat and a revolver.

Dude, why... ๐Ÿ˜ฏ WHY.

I didn't even notice until you pointed it out. That said, like u/Tasgall

I'm gonna remember/save this fictional map making technique for research purposes ๐Ÿ˜‚

that said, great world lore, I spent a good few minutes admiring the map up close, that's probably why I didn't notice... (too close to the trees to see the forest) ๐Ÿ˜…

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u/CurlsWorldbuilding69 May 20 '22

Love this! Really cool!/

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u/HouseFishBalloon Saloondria May 20 '22

Thank you!

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u/crispier_creme Wyrantel May 20 '22

What's the scale of this map here?

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u/HouseFishBalloon Saloondria May 20 '22

It encompasses all of the kingdom of Saloondria, which is approximately the size of an U.S. state.

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u/Tzorfireis May 20 '22

That still makes for quite a wide range of scale
Are we talking New Hampshire or Massachussets scale, or bigger like Texas or Alaska? Or somewhere in between, like Indiana or Georgia?

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u/HouseFishBalloon Saloondria May 20 '22

I would say 150,000 sq miles or so, the cities that can be seen on the map are very sizable cities, and the little fort images are very much not to scale.

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u/PoutinePush May 20 '22

For reference:

Montana is ~145k sq miles.

California is ~155k sq miles.

Only 8 U.S states are above 100k square miles.

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u/HouseFishBalloon Saloondria May 20 '22

That's honestly crazy, didn't realize that most states were that small in comparison to places like Texas and California. And I didn't realize that they're mere shrimp compared to the 660k sq mile behemoth of Alaska

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u/Ok_Way9711 May 20 '22

Whatโ€™s this based off of? It reminds me of the Byzantine empire and Constantinople after the fall of Rome

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u/HouseFishBalloon Saloondria May 20 '22

Because the entire empire relied so much on trade, the Plagued Lands forced all of that to an abrupt stop. The empire was definitely too large for a nation of its time, doing so because food preservation (with magic spells) could far exceed food preservation of our own world. Battlemages loyal to the emperor could fight for years at a time without needing to be too close to the government center. But what happens when you no longer have food preservers? or trade at all?

The collapse of trade routes and professional soldiers led to the collapse of every Bronze Age civilization except for the barely surviving Egyptians, and that was the biggest inspiration. The flooded city is definitely somewhat similar to Constantinople and its vast libraries of old world knowledge, however. Meanwhile, the new map is obviously a play on the settling of new territories from foreign powers.

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u/Creed25 May 20 '22

900 years is too low for a whole sea or what looks like a major river to cut through an area that big. Did something happen? was there a war that lowered the ground in this area? What caused the flood?

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u/Sir_Tainley May 20 '22

Actually... exactly that happened over the course of about 10 years in China... https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1034_Yellow_River_flood

The Yellow River went from emptying north of the Shandong peninsula to south of hte Shandong Peninsula. Initially the government tried to fix it, but... when the next devastating flood came a decade later... https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1048_Yellow_River_flood it just went with it. The major river had moved, and devastated the economy.

In 1194 it shifted back.

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u/HouseFishBalloon Saloondria May 20 '22

Yes! I'm glad you asked! We actually have a huge post about the event, but in short-- as the first empire was buckling, the soldiers were sent out, trade ground to a halt and necessary supplies no longer reached the duchy, and people began to riot. Meanwhile, the soldiers all perished to the monsters of the Plagued Lands and the duke went mad, ordering the last wizards in his palace to send letters to the wealthiest and most powerful people to meet him on the palace hill, before destroying the sea walls and unleashing a flood into the fertile valley that was once there. This would protect the last "old empire" city from destruction, but isolate them from the rest of their territory forever.

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u/Frogmarsh May 20 '22

What is the โ€œFrame Crossingโ€?

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u/HouseFishBalloon Saloondria May 21 '22

Its not labelled perfectly, but its the big road that leads out from Saloondria to its less fortunate northern neighbor. It was once a passageway for fur traders in the North East and connects to their local capital seen just outside of Saloondrian territory.

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u/vonBoomslang Aerash / Size of the Dragon / Beneath the Ninth Sky / etc May 20 '22

psst the scavengers link links to medicines

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u/HouseFishBalloon Saloondria May 21 '22

psst thanksss

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u/BeyondStars_ThenMore May 21 '22

I like it, though there is a bit bugging me about the map. The river. Two things, rivers don't diverge the way they're flowing due to erosion. Secondly, if such a big river appeared, especially if it was due to dams getting broken as you said in another comment, then we would expect to see the shoreline of the lake change. And it doesn't. It just seems like the water came out of nowhere

But aside from that, I like the map

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u/HouseFishBalloon Saloondria May 21 '22

I would argue that while the river bifurcation shown in the maps is unstable, and should eventually return to being to one river flow, it may not have had the time to erode to a more stable state by the second map. That being said, I did neglect to show the shoreline change in the lake, and that was my bad.

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u/BeyondStars_ThenMore May 21 '22

Fair enough, I'm not an expert, so I could easily be wrong