Worldbuilding Stage 1 - South

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Doctor Tyche
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Worldbuilding Stage 1 - South

Clarkstown

While not the best area in town, Clarkstown certainly has its own brand of charm. Home of the Garvison Square Mall and the Defiant Energy Corporation Convention Center, Clarkstown has been revitalized quite a bit over the last few years. The new and improved Briggstone neighborhood shows just how much potential there is, especially in climbing out of the pit that it was in; a pit still in evidence down in the Southside neighborhood. Most of the old industry has left for one reason or another, but a small area still remains, sitting next to the last bit of the Port of Clarkstown as an unwanted reminder of where the town came from and holding all the unsavory aspects of the shipping industry.

  • The little neighborhood that could, North Hill boasts a diverse community and is the home of the once unknown but now famous Big Sal’s Steakhouse and Sandwiches.
  • Northside is the remnant of Clarkstown’s four quadrants, the effects of gentrification are felt strongly here as it creeps in from Garvison Square and Briggstone. As if to spite the gentrification efforts, long-time residents and business owners are staying put, making sure that the little people are not forgotten in the long run to spruce up this old yet proud neighborhood.
  • Formerly an enormous textile mill, Garvison Square is now home to a park, a convention center, and the largest shopping mall in Titan City.
  • Home to rows of old brownstones, Briggstone is gradually being gentrified as the new shopping mall changes the face of the area.
  • Built on the side of Clark’s Hill, Hillside has upper-middle class homes on one end, tapering down to the more humble homes of people who work at the Port on the other.
  • A holdover of a bygone era, the Port is a once-thriving industrial area is now winding down, with many saying it should be done away with entirely.
  • Southside is the other remnant of Clarkstown's fourt quadrents, and remains the lowest income area of Clarkstown, with very little effect from the gentrification happening closer in to Garvison Square. Most of the occupants of this neighborhood are the low-income workers of the few remaining factories, and those that just can’t, or won’t, go elsewhere.

Highpoint

Highpoint is a thriving, hip area on the south side of the Bay. Due to the decline of many neighboring areas, rents in Highpoint are much cheaper than an equally nice area in the north, which has been attracting starving artists to the area for over fifty years. Most people who move to Highpoint wind up staying in the area, as do their families, which makes many of the communities tightly knit. The smaller streets in some areas feel cozy instead of cramped. The greenery in Highpoint is in a very urban flavor -- few trees line the streets and large parks are nonexistent. Instead, many homes, especially in Luxe, have rooftop and window gardens. Occasionally, Highpoint’s residents have laid claim to empty lots and transformed them into community gardens.

  • Ashcan is the most industrial of all the Highpoint neighborhoods. Some of the buildings are old industrial structures that have been repurposed as apartment buildings and art studios. It is not uncommon for public displays of strange post-modern artistic sculptures to randomly appear.
  • Lowbrow is semi-commercial, and home to a combination of construction and lumber yards as well as apartment buildings. Large sculpture studios and foundries can be found here, and the residential buildings tend to be of a more modern, drab gray and metal construction.
  • Luxe is the home of Highpoint’s bohemenain, nouveau riche. The buildings are all in perfect condition with windowsill and rooftop gardens. Town- and Row-houses are common here, and it is home to many small restaurants, boutiques, and cafes.
  • Savoy is a neighborhood that never sleeps. There are many bars, nightclubs, pop-up galleries, and diners. Many of the buildings date back to the 1910s, and eight-story walk-ups are common.
  • Diamond Beach was once a resort for the richest of the rich, the area wasn’t rebuilt the same after Hurricane Atlas, and is now merely a nice residential area for a predominantly Latino population.
  • Home to numerous German, Polist and Jewish immigrants who fled Europe prior to the world wars, Bauhaus is home to the district’s tallest apartments today.
  • Turell Hill is named after the former keepers of the lighthouse that sits at the top. It is an idyllic yet isolated little community that overlooks the urban sprawl that has occurred throughout the rest of Highpoint. The homes here tend to resemble small cottages, and is a popular place for retired artists to live.

Ironport

The artificial island of Ironport is always bustling and active, still a seat of all sorts of industries, licit and otherwise. Home to a thriving port and numerous factories, there’s always the feeling that something is going on just beneath the surface. Members of the syndicates lurk in back alleys, behind a veil of legitimate business. It’s very warm and active in some places, others are a little bit “off”, and others are just outright foreboding.

  • Harborside is one of the nicer sections of Ironport, though one has to narrow their definition of “nice” to be in relation to a collection of neighborhoods that are dependent on industrial imports/exports and steel mills. Brick structures dominate the landscape, giving it an almost cozy feel at times. Organized crime has a heavy presence here.
  • The main seat of industrial exports for Titan City, the Southend Docks are bustling and active. Brightly colored shipping containers line the docks, and small warehouses for interim storage are located along the shore. All that marrs the efficiency of the place is a persistent gang war and the occasional fishman attack.
  • Converted to supply warships during World War II, the Noreastern Slips were only partially converted back after the war. A strong criminal presence in the area has slowed the reconstruction of the neighborhood considerably, so you can still see WW2 Era propaganda (including some “Kilroy was here” graffiti) on some buildings, which have been converted into bases for the various factions in the area or service the small airfield on the eastern side of the island.
  • Located in (or rather, underneath) the waters of Ironport, The Dive is frequented by divers and adventure seekers who wish to find the ships that perished here during the Fire of 1908. It’s only marking is a small floating platform and some buoys. Beneath the surface, however, is a massive chasm filled with the charred remains of sunken ships.
  • A bustling hub of factories and steel mills, Milltown is the industrial heart of Ironport. Activity here is constant, both legal and otherwise. Industrial architecture is dominant, even amongst non-industrial buildings.

Liberty Harbor

Liberty Harbor is a slightly run-down commercial district, with a history of smuggling and criminal activity. This area is home to a coast guard base, shipyards, fishing wharves, a fish market, dilapidated housing and a large quantity of warehouses. A bit grungy, Liberty Harbor is a place where you might run into any sorts, and probably have to beat them up.

  • The Titan City Coast Guard Base is a large feature of Liberty Harbor. There are many slips for ships of various size and purpose here.
  • This fishery and marina dominates the Fishery Warf along the seaward side of the peninsula. While it still has many businesses catering to the fishery and to sailors more generally, it has seen better days. The southern end of the small bay contains a recreational boat marina home to smaller vessels owned by working-class weekend boaters, and even a few houseboats that serve as permanent residences for dockworkers.
  • Dryside is mostly warehousing and storage built around the rail and highway lines bisecting the district.
  • Whaler’s Row along the base of the peninsula is the location of low income housing, primarily row houses and low-rise apartments. Small business buildings that service these regions, such as shops, local bars and groceries stores, are also found here.
  • Named for the colonial fort sitting at its end, Kelley’s Point sits at the tip of this historical district. Overlooking the famous Phoenix Lighthouse, Kelley's Point serves as the silent guardian of Steward's Bay.
  • The sea floor around Liberty Harbor has gained the nickname of Thelma's Bed, after the sinking of the USS Thelma in these waters decades ago.

Lotus Hills

Lotus Hills is a melting pot of immigrants from various East Asian nations, and as such has an iconoclastic East-Meets-West flavor all throughout. Still, it’s part of the town, featuring everything from sleek and shiny penthouses to open-air markets and graffiti-covered back alleys.

  • The Village consists of affluent American-style buildings lining the western edge of Lotus Hills, bordering Weston. Unlike the other neighborhoods, Dragon activity in this location is almost nonexistent, due in no small part to a close knit community and a very effective neighborhood watch program. If urban legends are to be believed, the Village is also unusually vulnerable to hauntings.
  • Hu Shan Zhen is an ethnic Chinese (primarily Mandarin) neighborhood which features a few skyscrapers that blend into the business district of Tokki Row. It encompasses about a third of the eastern shoreline and contains many small fishing docks. Businesses and individuals here that refuse the Five Dragons sport a Tiger image (or the Hànji for 'Tiger') where it can be seen.
  • Simjang is the social and cultural hub of Lotus Hills. It encompasses much of the central area of the district, including the Heart shrine and the largest Market Square (which has a large open air market surrounded by stores). This is the true face of Lotus Hills as a strong and vibrant community. This is the most ethnically Korean part of Lotus Hills. Signage here is mostly in Korean. Although this area is calm and relatively safe, one should not run afoul of the vigilant Jade Men who patrol the area.
  • Less a neighborhood of buildings and more a single structure where the buildings kept expanding, merging, growing and fusing into each other, Taerlaphong City has proven less resistant to the Five Dragons and functions as a place of vice within the community. It is bordered on the north by Foxtown and on the south by Hu Shan Zhen. This is tolerated so that the other communities can feel clean of such dealings, yet partake quietly when desired. However, this is also a community of hardworking, straightforward, spiritual people who deal honestly -- even the criminals. Elephant iconography is ubiquitous here, but it does not signify resistance to the Five Dragons.
  • Ban is a poor neighborhood, and the one most dominated by the Five Dragons. It is a culturally and racially mixed area, known mainly for its excellent restaurants. However, virtually no businesses function here that do not benefit the Five Dragons in some way. Perhaps ironically, this area is relatively safe for visitors, even if it is a bit off-putting. The Five Dragons patrol it and they do not tolerate random violence in their streets. This neighborhood borders the affluent Village and the cozy Simjang, separated by a long, graffiti-covered wall.
  • Foxtown is the shrunken remains of one of the oldest communities in Lotus Hills, and is basically an enclave of ethnic Japanese culture. Ceramic foxes or fox masks adorn many of the buildings in this small neighborhood, an iconographic show of opposition to the Five Dragons that are present in the area.
  • Tokki Row has become a confluence of major metropolitan regions from around Asia. Skyscrapers abound, surrounded by a plethora of food carts and vending machines. Anything from exotic candy and imported toys to tomes and totems of magical power can be found with relative ease here.
  • Weston
    Weston is a mix of urban and residential neighborhoods with some industrial areas. Generally, Weston has an aura of hopelessness. While there are some brighter spots in Widow's Reach and Mercy Street, most efforts to revitalize Weston have died a premature death. Weston 's once bustling streets have emptied and its beautiful buildings have become ruins. It is a "bad" part of town and non-residents tend to avoid going into Weston at all costs. The low-income residents dream of moving out of Weston , or maybe making it better, but rarely succeed. Weston is dark, dreary and crime-ridden.

    • After you’ve hit rock bottom, Washout City is the next step down. Once serving the shipping industry, Washout City lost its status with the creation of the Iron Port artificial island. Cut off from its lifeblood, the neighborhood simply fell apart, all while staring at the cause of its hardship across the canal.
    • Corrosion Park is a sea of warehouses and shipping containers. This scarcely-inhabited area to the south of Washout City remained underdeveloped until the 1970s, when its flat, empty, incredibly cheap land soon became dominated by metal.
    • A factory-ridden neighborhood dating back to the Industrial Revolution, Blacksmoke Row has a selection of abandoned factories since the shipping industry changed in the intervening years.
    • Downturn Alley once tried to stay ahead of the economy, with hotels, cafes, and more, but it was only a shiny gloss coating over the rotten core that was the economy of being a seaport that catered to the sailors. The presence of gangs here is strong, and the police presence was a joke even back when there was an effort at it.
    • An old middle-to-upper class neighborhood before the fall of Weston’s economy, Mercy Street was once home to many families. Now, those homes are showing many signs of wear, and the hope has died out of its residents.
    • Rose Boulevard was always a good gauge of Weston’s economic health, having been dubbed “Main Street” in colonial times. It was a glamorous, vibrant part of Titan City in the 1910s and ‘20s, full of shops, theaters, clubs, and even speakeasies. When the economy in Weston fell, Rose Boulevard was one of the worst hit, and most of the businesses have since been boarded up and forgotten.
    • The final resting place of centuries of mariners can be found at the Star of the Sea Cemetery here in the Seafarer’s Rest neighborhood of Weston. There are some residences nearby, but the cemetery is the primary feature here.
    • Widow’s Reach was once the home of ship captains and their families. The area consists of larger homes of a historic type, mostly nineteenth to early twentieth century construction, many of which feature widow’s walks. Some of the homes are even listed on Titan City’s register of historic buildings. While most of the residents of Widow’s Reach no longer have the wealth that the original residents did, it is the wealthiest part of Weston, by far.

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