View Full Version : [City] Estamaris

2005-07-01, 07:54 PM

Introduction: I arrived in Estamaris via boat and was surprised to discover that the docks weren’t actually part of the town, they floated, anchored to the sandbar that separates the lagoon from the harbour. It was quite a strange experience to step off the ship and onto another floating platform.

In the distance, I could see shanty towns, and the base of a large tower rising up out of the dreary swamplands. It looked like a truly dismal place to live. Floating between the docks and that mishmash of humanity was a large temple to the sun god, and far above,rich buildings were visible in the trees.

I asked around for a place to stay, and was advised that it is unwise for travellers with valuables to stay in the shantytowns. Some meagre accommodations were available in the docks, but the best inns I was told, required taking the transport up into the rich sector. 100 gold pieces for transport! Well, ever curious and with money from my cargo burning a hole in my pocket…I just had to see how the better half lived for myself.

Arriving in the treetop land of the rich I switched from one conveyance to another and stepped out into the main square. Above me, I could see the top of the tower I’d spotted when I came in. It was carved into a dozen turrets, once they must have been spectacular, the carvings of planar beings enough to strike awe in any heart, but the carvings had begun to rot away in the damp swamp air. The city too… had a reputation for being rotten. The largest statue carved into the face of the tower, was of a paladin, sword in hand. Unlike the others, the statue was well taken care of and I later learnt that it portrayed the man who’d designed the transport system. At the time however, I was more intent on seeking out the most comfortable inn I could find.

-Type:Large City - 12,001-25,000 - 40,000 gp
-Exact population: 14'500 (At last census).
4'300 in the wealthy sector 10'200 in the poor sector


Rich Quarter
40% Human
30% elf
10% other races

Poor Quarter
Human 30%
Halfling 30%
Orc 20%
Elf 10%
Other races 10%

Background Information:

History: Estamaris was founded long ago by a community of wild elves and human rangers , slowly more and more people sort shelter from the trouble times in this swamp, thinking that by building in such an inhospitable spot, raiders would leave them alone. Besides, there was plenty of water and games in the swamp. The city continued to grow in the most unlikely of locations, and a sudden burst of trade and building activity took place when theNarcotic properties of the Tapati plants were discovered. The golden age of Estamaris took place when adventuer Brac Deshan settled there, and using money gained from his many adventures, set up honnest businesses. With the profits generated by these businesses he errected Deshan tower, and built the transport system around it. A statue of him was later carved into the towers front in honour of his legacy.

Physical Description: Estamaris is located along a swampy section of coastline. The poor section is a floating shanty town which is built on the swamps unstable ground and the waters of the lagoon, attached to the foundations of Brac deShan’s tower by thick cables under the water. Where the sand bar encloses the lagoon there is a floating docks system, and beyond the lagoon walls are built up to make a harbour (the lagoon is too shallow for trade ships, but many little boats go too and from the docks to transport workers.) From the docks it is possibly to take the public transport up into the canopy of trees where the richer inhabitants of Estamaris live.

Public transport system: Public transport system: The public transport system consists of several long thin carriages with comfortable seating inside and a smaller carriage attached to the front. Inside the smaller carriage is a driver and a furnace. These travel on metal tracks that hang on pylons attached to the trees of the swamp and strengthened by magical spells. The trains are powered by magical crystals which are burnt by the driver in a furnace found in the front carriage. Burning the crystals creates a magical current that is channelled into machinery which causes the wheels to turn and propels the carriage along the tracks.

All this is watched by a team of mechanics and mages inside Deshan’s tower, via permanent “scrying stations” which are tuned into all the different sections of the tracks in case of problems. Teleport spells are prepared so that mages and mechanics can arrive instantly at the scene in case of trouble.

The magic crystals are created by local mages, distilled with local vegetation, and certain imported materials.

Arts and Culture: Estamaris is a very business centred city, so there are a lot of very starving artists. To survive in Estamaris you have to be able to pay your way, and art isn’t always easy for that. That said, bards are greatly coveted guests by the rich in their tree mansions, and they will collect art work to add to their collections which means that some of the poor make their livings by catering to the urge of the rich to decorate their houses. Music is certainly the most popular art in both the rich and poor quarters though. The poor favour singing and lyre music and the fashion in the rich quarters lately is to hire bards to play wind instruments for them. The culture in Estamaris is very classist, but very tolerant species wise. It doesn’t matter what race you come from if you have the money….and if you don’t, well poor elves and poor half orcs are in the same boat… or perhaps not the same boat, but certainly the same shanty town.

Economics: Drugs harvested from the Tapati plants in the swamp for a major part of Estamaris’ exports. They also sell medicinal herbs, and silks woven from the Pavon plants. Food is available, but some food stuffs are imported. Most of the imports are metal ores and certain building materials.

The Effects of Tapati Plants:
Ok for game purposes this works like a -4 To intelligence and wisdom, and a temporary -10 to spot search and listen as the user is hallucinating. In contrast users receive a +10ft to the normal speed of their race.

Symptoms Vary from user to user but the most common are either being hyper and talking alot or being paranoid and agressive. Many users esxhibit Dramatic Moodswings. All users seem completely disconnected from reality.

Physically many users breath shallowly and have a rapid heart rate when using. They can exhibit a frenzied burst of speed (+10 ft) while under drug use.

Religion: Estamaris is not a very religious town but all religions are welcome here. However there are only 3 major temples. In the rich quarter is a glorious pantheon, built among the branches of the largest sturdiest tree in the swamp, and containing shrines to every god imaginable. In the shanty town there is a shrine to Olidamara, and floating between the docks and the shanty town is a temple to Pelor. The priests of the temple are engaged in a battle to “educate” the misguided and give much needed charity to those who suffer from the cities corruption. They are often at odds with the thieves’ guild. There are many small homemade shrines to various gods scattered around the shanty town and docks but these do not have any clergy or temple services as such, they are simply a place to pray.

Government: The city is in a country run by republic and is widely considered the most corrupted province in the republic. The politicians take bribes to ignore the criminal dealings that are rife within the city, and this is what allows them to stay in power by paying their way, the town guard are equally corrupt, for the most part. The city was once a beautiful place to live where justice was highly valued, but since the time of Brac Deshan it has fallen lower and lower.

Crime: Drugs crimes are appallingly high and crime in general has a high rate, especially in the poor quarter.

The Monument: The tower of Brac Deshan rises up from the trees in the middle of Estamaris. This impressive building houses the magical controls for the transport system that relays the entirety of the old city. The tower was named after the inventor of the transport system, who built it in order to favour the less fortunate of the city. However, since it was built, the less fortunate have been forced out of the old city into the floating shanty towns below it, while the rich use the transport system to avoid descending from the trees unless leaving Estamaris.

Power Struggles: The poor of Estamaris struggle for day to day survival, while the few honest guards of the city struggle against rampant corruption in the government, the rest of the town guard and the ever-growing drugs trade out of the city. Striga Rasgul is the major crime lord of Estamaris, and is responsible for the harvesting of Tapati from the swamp, which leaves him with enough money to keep most of the city's officials in his pockets. There is a conflict between the poor and the rich. The poor want the transport system expanded, the rich want to keep the division between them and the poor. **This may still be revised an expanded **

Adventure Hooks:

1) Upon arrival in the docks, the party overhear a plot to destroy part of the transport system. (The motives and perpetrators of the plot are up to the dm and could range from a protest against the corruption of the city by some of the less fortunate, to a deliberate sabotage to prevent interference during criminal activities in a certain part of the rich quarter.
2) If playing with a party of questionable ethnics, the party could receive an offer from a shady individual to invade Deshan’s tower and hijack the public transport system for nefarious purposes (Transportation of drugs, sealing of a section of the city etc).
3) Whilst walking through town the players come across one of the city guards being beaten up, if adventurers save him he will tell them he’s investigating a shipment of Tapati based drugs (or some other good if the dm so wishes)to try and arrest Reese Mordak one of Striga’s goons(he’d never get striga and neither will the players unless their epic level). He may offer them pay if they can help him gain evidence, as his cover has just been blown (resulting in the attack).

Important People

Atria Jickan (Current Mayor of Estamaris)http://www.3eprofiler.net/3ep/view.php?id=28055

Striga Rasgul (Crimelord of Estamaris)

Maps and Map Keys

Estamaris –sea level
1-Harbour walls
3-Temple of Pelor
4-Shanty town
5-Base of Deshan’s tower

Estmaris -treelevel
1 Public transport docking station
2 Public transport line
3 Deshan Tower
4 Courthouse
5 Town Guard HQ
6) Pantheon
7) Town hall
8) Tavern
9) Potions and Magic shop (more potions can be found at the temple)
10) Weapons shop
11) Market square
12) Public transport docking station
13) Gate to Striga rasgul’s compound
14) Striga rasgul’s compound
15) residential area

Estamaris –Docks close up
1) Public transport dockingstation- (Transport up to treelevel)
3) Harbour Administration
4) General store
5) Arms store
6) Magic shoppe
7) Small Residential area

Estmaris-Shanty town
1) General store
2) Small stall selling “magic” goods
3) Shoddy Smithy
4) Inn
5) Shrine to Olidamara
6) Broken Public Transport Docking Station
7) Residential areas
8) Houseboats

2005-07-02, 08:46 AM
I like the way the city is built and the transportation is a nice touch :D , here are a few things that you mught want to clarify:
The Government - who exactly is in charge of the city (like a major , a council) ?
How did he get there and most importantly how does he manage to stay in power - if the cops are honest, what's keeping them and the rest of the poor population from overthrowing their oppressors?

Adding some bold or italic to make to city more readable, will make a big difference in the end.

Good luck

2005-07-02, 03:22 PM
Actually the majority of the cops AREN?T Honnest...maybe i should make that clearer. But yeah still needs quite a bit of work

2005-07-02, 05:32 PM
it sounds good, quite an original location if you ask me :)

2005-07-04, 01:09 PM
Actually the majority of the cops AREN?T Honnest...maybe i should make that clearer. But yeah still needs quite a bit of work

Makes sense.

Magical "electricity" to power the transport system that is great .

What's the effect of Tapati on a person - are there any physical effects that you can tell a jukie on a street by them?

2005-07-09, 07:28 PM

Updated, including the effects on Tapati plants for more details....highly comparable to the effects of cocaine.