Bardag Ol lies in the midst of the Adaz Pass, on the Great West Road. A product of a mixture Old Sohari architecture and frontier pragmatism, it is an interesting blend of sophisticated pomp and grizzled realism.
Bardag Ol began as a fortress under the command of the Sohan Dominion, on the eastern side of Adaz Pass. At this time, travelers had not yet begun heading along the Great West Road into Bai Omag. The Sohan Dominion discouraged immigration, and the pass was at the time occupied by the Pakthari, a hostile tribe. The Sohani Autarch, Limhulak the Black, demanded that the Pakthari be eliminated, and his great press machine filled the jobless, landless underclass with a bowling desire to surge westward, with news that the Pakthari had discovered gold and were keeping it all to themselves.
After the brief but fierce Sohani-Pakthari Wars (which resulted in the almost complete destruction of the Pakthari), the Sohani constructed the advance fort of Jamataza at the peak of the pass, and the lower slopes of the east and west sides became peppered with small settlements. Though the Autarch's claims turned out to be untrue (as he had known all along), the settlers discovered another, more useful commodity- iron, which Adaz Range was filled with.
As the region became more and more wealthy through the iron trade, the West Slope Sohari became interested in crossing the Radescu Badlands. This led to the re-discovery of Bai Omag, and the resumption of trade between the two nations. Gradually, Adaz, and with it, Jamataza, became the richest portion of Sohar, gradually eclipsing the capitol province of Soharidecu.
The Roving Wars Period saw the collapse of the national government in Soharidecu, and widespread chaos across Sohar. Adaz asserted it's control as a sovereign nation, claiming a wide region including the Adaz Pass and some attendent land around the mountains, and the Radescu Badlands.
At this juncture, the newly-crowned Eshug-King of Adaz renamed the vastly expanded mountain capitol of Jamataza to Bardag Ol, 'Highest Tower'.
Bardag Ol is perched in a small caldera-like valley at the peak of the Adaz Pass, with dramatic peaks, valleys, and cliffs to either side. It surrounds the small Lake of Maz. The city's architecture is an interesting combination of styles. Most of the structures are what is known as Old Sohari in style- large, square-ish, very official, federal-looking buildings, constructed of local slate, and with large sections of their walls covered in ancient, weathered carvings which spell out the various ancient laws and codes of the Sohar Dominion. The roofs of Old Sohari structures are steeply-pitched, and in Bardag Ol, they are roofed with slate tiles.
However, sitting side-by-side with Old Sohari buildings are the enormous, ramshackle frontier dwellings in what is often called Adaz Rustic style. Often four or five stories in height, these structures are known for a pleasantly-ramshackle appearance, with irregular shape. Typically, they are constructed almost entirely of wood and brick, and feature long-guttered, steep roofs or heavy-layered thatches.
A third style in Bardag Ol is the growing Olite style, a sort of combination of the two- generally three stories in height, and constructed of stone, Olite structures are intricately carved with baroque designs, but are more regular in shape and construction than Adaz Rustics.
The streets of Bardag Ol are paved, unlike many in Adaz. Large blocks of slate and rock were placed there by the order of the Naisag-King Irmalf, who desired that his racehorse be able to clap up sparks with it's hooves.
Another aspect of Bardag Ol is the Royal Forges- early in Adazi history, the Kings took control of the iron mines and made all blacksmiths and ironworks government-controlled. This has given them a very stable financial base which the Autarchs of Sohar lacked. Looming above the city on the side of Ramash Peak, the Royal Forges are a squat brick complex from which smoke and the sound of hammering metal pours at all times. At night, it's red glow is visible from across the city.
Opposite the Royal Forges, on the Peak of Saidat, and accessible only by the King's Bridge spanning the Lake of Maz, is the famous Mazangor, the palace of the Kings of Adaz. This fortress-like palace is surrounded by a sizable game preserve, and it's outbuildings occupy many cliffs around the city.
Bardag Ol is a very nocturnal city- it's rowdy street markets open often only at night. Commerce fills the streets at all times. Carts constantly enter and leave Bardag Ol, heading east into Old Sohar or west bound for Bai Omag. The chatter of a hundred tongues is heard at all times.
In the east side there is the tiny Pakthari district, hedging the road down through the peaks into Old Sohar. This small tent-city of traditional painted tipis and campfires is a huge difference from the baroque city above, and gives many travelers from the old lands to east are shocked by this.
The city has a feel of combined logging camp/border fort and old-style capitol. It is an interesting air, which has led many Adazi to settle in the city. It is by far the most populous of the Adazi cities (the second largest is Soharidecu, a mere shadow of it's former glory).
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? Responses (5)-5
Not good at all, I'm afraid.
I like it.
Both vibrant and down-trodden, growing in prosperity while the empire has collapsed. Very much a dynamic location, and one destined to carry the torch f the old power by virtue of it's economic status and its easily defensable location. Plenty of opportunity as the nobility has yet to cement into place, and the old power structures of the Sohar dissolve. Yes, plenty of room for intrigue and adventure.
A good write up, not a great city image, but a good city write up. Take off the city image tag and I think you would be better rated.
I think one of the things that detracts is some of the implied history is almost too deep. There is too much of it that requires understanding to grok the city. So we get this history and names, and more names, and more names, and it is all supposed to make sense... but doesn't really.
Disagree with Moon on this one - the History adds to a good physical description of the city - It certainly conjured up a City Image to me.