I guess I should be writing more of the story then.
Actually now that I have the time, I was going to begin working on the story more (finishing chapter 1 and starting chapter 2) as my writer's inspiration comes back. Now to answer your various questions:
Well, the first thing is to iron out "where Harrvah is in relation to the rest of it's world." Roots would be the authority on these.
• How big is harrvah? Is it just a single city-state with surrounding farmland? Likewise, what is it's population (not something that will determine how big the city map ends up, since every RPG game gives cities in miniature), but something that will determine what variety of things are in the first city.
Harrvah is a relatively new and undeveloped country. The capital city of Harrvah (located near the center of the kingdom) is the largest city with a few thousand inhabitants or so (or in RPG terms: maybe 40-50 NPCs to talk to
). The outlying towns are mostly farming villages with few inhabitants. Because the Harrvah kingdom is mostly a desert, there is not very much fertile land. There is one other large city on the western border which lies on a trade route with the neighboring kingdom to the west (has not yet been named, but its a very mountainous kingdom). I might have one other large sea port city later, but I haven't thought that far yet (the player wouldn't visit it for a while anyway).
• How much trade does harrvah have with neighboring countries/farmland? (I'm hoping, for interests sake, that it's no more isolated than, say, india was in ancient times - it might not have constant trade with other nations, and "trading" might be year-long caravan/sea treks to another country (e.g. huge, dangerous, non-casual, endeavours), but I hope it has at least *some* trade with other countries, to bring in major things (like silks, whatever), even if Harrvah is mostly isolated.)
Harrvah only has one neighboring kingdom to its west, which it does most of its trading with. South of the kingdom are uninhabited lands, and to the east and north lies the sea. You may recall the native Muabi tribe that live in Harrvah (they lived there long before Harrvah became established). The Harrvahans and the Muabi do not have a good relationship and do not trade with each other. Often small regional conflicts break out between the two sides. Generally speaking, Harrvahans hate the Muabi and the Muabi hate the Harrvahans.
• Is harrvah completely landlocked (like Iowa), landlocked but near the sea (like western pennsylvania), or having at least one distant sea port?
This I haven't decided. I think that for the most part the Harrvah sea borders are among high rocky cliffs, and the few spots that are suitable for a port of sea trade are occupied by the Muabi. Harrvah generally began in the western regions and has continued to expand eastward to the capital, but it has not expanded to the north, south, or east of the capital yet.
• What is the primary industry of Harrvah? E.g. what do the average people do?
Good question. I don't have a good answer for this one, because I don't know what would be a good export/industry for a desert kingdom. The scattered villages are mostly farmers. Maybe mining might be a good trade, but I dunno. Does anyone have a good suggestion for this?
Roots wrote:But generally speaking, I envision Harrvah as a cross between an arabic and a medival culture. I imagine it as if knights from an otherwise cultivated land came to the desert, not knowing how to meld with the climate well, and are thus slowly acclimating their society to it.
This still very much holds true. I think this statement best summarizes Harrvah and its people.
—> Other important questions to consider:
Is Havarah an ancient city in decay,
a city built by a different culture, now occupied by a stylisticly different people,
A new upstart city, where everything is being built and expanded for the first time,
a city with stark contrasts between the rich and the poor,
or a city where nearly everyone has a chance to make it,
a city at peace,
or a city at war with itself or those outside?
Harrvah is a kingdom with a short history (i.e., its relatively new) that is actively developing and expanding its reach. Although the structures are not that old, Harrvah is not a financially prosperous kingdom, and thus many buildings generally look rather poor and shabbish. I don't envision any significant differences between rich and poor: its a place where everyone has to work together in order to survive and prosper. There are no internal conflicts within the kingdom, although as I said before, the Muabi remain a constant threat (but they are not at war with the Muabi). Except for the occasional Muabi raid and the dangerous creatures that inhabit the desert, Harrvah would be a rather peaceful place.
—> Another important question is the level of technology that will be found in the game. Or is magic present? What kind of magic: Is it limited and rare, or part of daily life?
Yeesh, I haven't thought this far ahead yet.
I think magic will be introduced later in the game, as the region of the world that the game starts in is behind in technology and very few people have witnessed magic. I do want to have some sort of logical explanation for magic rather than just having it "exist". I think I might have laid out some thoughts about magic with some others in another thread, but it was very long ago.
—> Climate is also important . One of architecture's major functions is keeping people warm or cool.
Keeping them cool and safe. The desert is a harsh environment to live in. I know because I lived in one growing up.
—> We have the really big dogs in the short story. Are there other unusual creatures that are part of society?
Not that I have dreamed up, no. There are few creatures that could make themselves useful in such a climate. We'll probably see other creatures in society pop up in later parts of the story.
Rain wrote:So my question becomes this, to what purposes will Harrvah serve within the grand scheme of Allacrost? I feel that if we can get a handle on that, it will make creation of this fictional locale a bit more cohesive.
Well Harrvah was the first kingdom to be attacked by the army of demons, and the king was responsible with respect to his position in the world and informed the other countries of what transpired. Then of course he sent out Claudius to find the hero that legend told would be the only hope of defeating such an evil terror.
Harrvah is just a kingdom trying to make it on its own. It doesn't play much of a major focus on the story besides being the place where "it all began". In fact I don't think we'll have any particular kingdom that the story will be centered around. The story is centered around Claudius and his journey, and the various countries just happen to be a part of that journey.
Phew, you guys sure make me type a lot first thing in the morning.
Hopefully this answers a lot of questions though. I don't want to be the sole creator of this world though, so I always welcome people's ideas and thoughts about how the world is structured.