Dragonstar Character Development

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Yeti
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Dragonstar Character Development

Post by Yeti » Wed Jun 21, 2017 3:15 pm

Going off of Infragris's overviews of Brina Cross and Thresvy, I've tried to give Dragonstar a similar treatment. This replaces the previous unorganized thread, though there is still information in it that hasn't made its way into the new outline.

Background

Dragonstar is a fortified settlement that strides the Reach’s contested border. The town is built below the mesas of the Druadach Highlands, at a crossroads between the provinces of Hammerfell, High Rock, and Skyrim. Lingering conflicts from the War of Bend’r-Mahk have divided the town into two occupied enclaves. Wary guards patrol the streets in large numbers, making life hard for the townspeople but doing little to stamp out resistance. Despite the unrest, many merchants and other travelers come to the town through Ghast’s Pass, though few stay in the city long before moving on.

Dragonstar’s history dates back to when ancient bands of nomadic Nedes would cross through the area’s canyons to trade with neighboring cultures. Eventually, they drove the Reachmen tribes from the site and built a settlement of their own. It has changed hands many times between conquerors from surrounding provinces, interested in controlling and taxing its trade routes. When the people of Yokuda fled to and conquered Hammerfell, Dragonstar was as far north as their Warrior Wave reached. Though the traditionalist and isolationist Crowns historically hold sway over this frontier, they have been forced to tolerate the large number of foreigners living on their land, though they’ve grown more xenophobic since losing the last war.

Two rulers currently claim the city. Jarl Jona the Ansei-Ender rules Dragonstar East, having won control of it in war thirty odd years ago. For her, the war never truly ended, and she feels cheated that the empire intervened, dividing Dragonstar in two and halting the Nord conquest. The most ruthless of the Reach’s warlords, Jona has sworn to destroy the Soga Dur-Gada, a fanatical band of Redguard insurgents blamed for poisoning three of her most trusted huscarls years ago, including her Tent-Husband.

Dragonstar West is ruled by Prince Darojad, heir to the Tomba (clan territory) of Karthwasten. Only an infant when the war ended, he was smuggled from his father’s palace to safety. Thirty years later many of his people want him to retake the clan’s lost lands, but he's hesitant to take what is really an impossible task. He has a lot of power by right, but is mostly trying to keep the peace and deescalate conflicts. A lot of Dur-Gada related groups see him as a weak puppet ruler and are constantly plotting acts of terror to provoke Jona. An Imperial peacekeeping force is tasked with preventing this conflict from getting out of hand, but its effectiveness is waning.

Exteriors & Interiors

Dragonstar consists of roughly 45 buildings and the narrow streets and alleys connecting them. A wood palisade divides the city into two sections. In the east an outdoor marketplace and the famous Dragon fountain square are the most notable landmarks, along with Prince Darojad’s opulent palace. A traditional Yoku temple and the Convent of Zeht are other locations. To the west, Jarl Jona’s fortified stronghold overlooks her side of the city, which includes an arena pit and the abandoned Fighters Guild guildhall. Both sides of the city have their own inns, along with a few shops. Various peasant hovels are scattered around the outskirts.

In the surrounding wilderness, the ruins of Vars Tharnil stand on a mesa to the west, overlooking the pass to Hammerfell. Smugglers use other nearby passages, such as the Calar Druad canyon, to bypass the city’s guards, though they must mind the garrisons posted at the Taurus Hall legion fort, and the Redguard border post Tro-Tuktura. A band of poor Reachmen peddlers are camped outside the eastern gate.

People

Dragonstar’s population is a mix of many different races, notably Bretons, Reachmen, Redguards, and Nords in that order.

>to be continued<

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roerich
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Re: Dragonstar Character Development

Post by roerich » Wed Jun 21, 2017 6:05 pm

Great job Yeti. There's already been a lot of planning done in the interior claims, if you haven't checked those out.
A traditional Yoku temple and the Convent of Zeht are other locations.
The general Yoku temple has been turned into a more specific house of worship, a Diagna cloister. An obscure deity, which is still worshipped in this region (Dragontail mts), but which mostly acts as a power spirit these days. Worship has risen in the aftermath of the Bend'r Mahk, as nationalistic and vengeful Yoku soldiers wishes for Diagna to manifest an avatar and lead the Redguards in conquering their lost lands. Also, the founding and expansion of King Gorthwog's Nova Orsinium is an insult to Diagna worshippers, and anti-Orc racism is very common in this part of the city, among Diagna's followers.

During the siege, the temple lost some incredibly valuable Orichalcum artifacts, among others an ancient blade from Yokuda, used in the rebellion against the Left Handed Elves. They are very keen on getting these back, especially in order to appease Diagna. The artifact weapons themselves are probably spread out, with one in Jona's vaults, another stolen by a Nordic warlord, a third ended up some completely random place. Getting these back should be an important quest if you're working for the Redguards.

The Convent of Zeht has been turned into the knightly order (in the Yoku tradition version) called the Order of the Dragon-Tooth. They moved to Dragonstar during the war, in order to help against the Nordic incursions and defend the city. Their arrival is one of the major factors of Dragonstar not being wholly run over by the Nordic armies, at least if you ask them. In reality, they were far from the only warrior-order participating in the war, and the standstill is rightly attributed to Imperial Legion intervention in most people's understanding. After the war, the Order settled in Dragonstar, woving to protect the citizens as long as part of Dragonstar is still occupied. They moved into the Gwylim manor (known from Shadowkey), after the previous owners fled the area along with many other refugees.They shouldn't be joinable, but acts like a local Fighter's Guild.
When the people of Yokuda fled to and conquered Hammerfell, Dragonstar was as far north as their Warrior Wave reached. Though the traditionalist and isolationist Crowns historically hold sway over this frontier, they have been forced to tolerate the large number of foreigners living on their land, though they’ve grown more xenophobic since losing the last war.
This should mention the "Merchant captains" as well, a Yoku faction of mercenary-warriors, who founded and settled the Crown fortress on the older Nedic settlement. They are an important part of the local power hiearchy, ever loyal to the Crowns but also serving their own interests outside of Crown politics.
Dragonstar’s population is a mix of many different races, notably Bretons, Reachmen, Redguards, and Nords in that order.
I would change the order (for Dragonstar West) to Redguards, Breton, Reachmen, Nords. This is the number one Redguard location in all of Shotn, it should give a lot of insight into Yoku culture.
Tro-Tuktura
I'm not too sure about the existence of this fort. It's an easy way to manage province borders, but I think it looks awkward to have this fort so close to the city. I would minimize it perhaps, or narrow the canyon so it doesn't show from afar, and you just enter into nothingness after coming around a bend. It's fun to remember that the actual province border is in the middle of Dragonstar, in the temporary Imperial fort, which also houses Census & Excise.

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Yeti
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Re: Dragonstar Character Development

Post by Yeti » Wed Jun 21, 2017 10:16 pm

Thank you for the information, roerich. Reading through the interior claims didn't give me this much insight, so I appreciate the corrections. Do you have plans for all the claims yet? They would help me fill out the people sections.

Aren't the merchant captains and the Convent of Zeht the same group? At any rate, we need a name for these warrior-merchants that gives them some flavor.

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roerich
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Re: Dragonstar Character Development

Post by roerich » Thu Jun 22, 2017 10:25 am

I have plans for some of the claims, I can post them some time.

No, the Convent of Zeht was planned to be another merchant-affiliated faction. Originally the Merchant Captains guildhall was located by the southgate, but now it's next to Prince Darojad’s palace and the Dragon Fountain.

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