Taladas 2nd Ed open world
The city of Union is a cultural crossroads, a trading center that connects to many other planes but exists outside them all. It is a city that has few resources of its own, yet it thrives because its masters, the mercanes, wish it so. The mercanes have arranged circumstances so that any and all are welcome to visit and do business, so long as business is not disrupted. It is an ideal locale to acquire many beautiful, unusual, and rare things, to meet interesting travelers from across the multiverse, and to get somewhere else. It is often said that anyone going anywhere usually finds the going quicker when one passes through Union.
Union is one of a few recognized planar metropolises, but of course in a near infinite multiverse, the true number may be likewise quite large.
The city of Union exists on a demiplane all its own, a strange, limitless, twilight void. This demiplane has up and down directions, with the pull of normal gravity working in a constant direction. Likewise, time passes normally in the demiplane. Magic functions normally.
The demiplane is neither coexistent with (doesn’t overlap) nor coterminous to (doesn’t naturally touch) any other plane. However, the demiplane holds a great number of artificial gales and portals that connect to several extradimensional locations.
Within this twilight void drifts a collection of floating islands, gently hovering umbrellas of rock that coast through the twilight carried on gentle air currents.
Huge reefs of cloud sometimes move like armadas through the high or low sky, glowing with
ambient light. The rocky formations and the cloud banks are the two main features in this void, and they are surrounded on all sides, above and below, with an indirect purplish orange glow, reminiscent of the most fabled of sunsets. The temperature remains pleasantly warm, like an early summer evening, and a constant slight breeze blows, seemingly from a randomly fluctuating direction, keeping the air fresh. No other weather of any kind has ever disturbed this peaceful demiplane or the city that floats within it (some have altered the weather magically, though only until caught and dealt with by the Union Sentinels).
The city is built on a small cluster of these floating islands, a full dozen of them bound together in a group, with bridges and stairs crossing between them. The twelve islands are roughly level with one another, though stairways may stretch up or down between islands by one or two hundred feet. Each island is very slightly convex. Lamplighters keep all the major thoroughfares well lit through the use of evenly spaced, magically illuminated lamps. Many of the buildings built on the islands also benefit from magical illumination, while the common marketplace of Union literally twinkles like a festival tree due to all the various ecorative lighting, Seen from a slight distance, the community is a tranquil vision, a faerie land adrift in glowing spaces.
Union possesses a number of amenities that make the place not just inhabitable, but quite comfortable for most of its residents and visitors. Each of the individual rock formations has a subterranean planar portal connected to the Elemental Plane of Water just large enough to allow for a steady flow. Most often, this flow bubbles to the surface in the form of mountains, but in a “Portal” is a general term for a stationary interplanar connection.
Portals, which include such related items as vortices and gates, open at one location on the originating plane and at one location on the destination plane (or one on each destination
plane, if more than one).
Portals are created by many sources. Some are simply large magic items, linking the two planes (or two locations within the same plane, in some cosmologies). Others exist naturally.
And the deities themselves created some portals. Portals vary in appearance and size. A creature must be able to fit through the opening to use a portal. Portals also vary in their method of use: Most require sentience, some requires phrase to be spoken, and others require keyed items to use.
Most portals provide instantaneous transportation from one location to another. Unlike with a mundane doorway, it is usually impossible to step halfway across or reach through a portal. You are either on one side or the other. Spells do not pass through, and divinations do not reveal anything about the other side of the portal unless specifically noted by the spell.
POPULATION AND ASSETS
The “core” city of Union houses about 5,000 residents;
however, that accounts for just the twelve directly linked islands. At least one hundred unlinked islands floating free from the core contain residences, magically maintained farms, warehouses, factories, and other concerns. In sum, the greater population of Union easily surpasses 100,000 residents. Union is a major trading center that serves the denizens of a hundreds of planes, and the number of visitors in the city at any given time swells the total population to half again that number during peak trade days or rare festivals.
Some quarters are much more tightly packed (the Tavern Quarter and the Market Quarter, for example), while others seem sparse by comparison (the Temple Quarter and the High Quarter).
As a planar metropolis, Union’s gold piece limit is nominally set at 600,000 gp; however, during a yearly month-long crossplanar arcane convention, the gold piece limit increases to 1,000,000 gp. The assets of the city are likewise fluid, but the low end is easily in the tens of millions of gold pieces.