Situated astride the Great Dardaas river as it flows south westward towards the sea, Heidelgard City is the bustling capital city of Heidelgard itself. It is of an urban population of about 120,000 people, with a spidering network of smaller towns, villages, hamlets and farms extending out into the countryside and especially upriver along the largest and greatest river on the continent; this secondary rural population is about the same again, but greatly dispersed.
The city itself is bisected, with the larger part of the city along the southern bank of the river, and the smaller part along the northernmost one, with the population and area being split 33/66 %. The river is still quite wide here, and so there are 3 bridges that connect the 2 parts of the city, named the Zeevurt Bridge (the most southerly one nearest the sea), the Olten Bridge (a colossal rickety wooden structure that has become shanty town as much as bridge over the centuries) and the northerly Kings Bridge. Numerous ferries also ply their way to and from bank to bank, as do river taxis, barges and other watercraft of many a keel.
The northern part of the city is regarded as the more exclusive and affluent area, though some districts and areas in the south are comparable. The northern section is divided into 3 distinct areas or districts, being the RegusKwarteer, the Raalskheer and the UstKwarteer, described below;
This area is where government and the monarchy reside, along with the truly wealthy nobles, aristocrats and merchants. Dominated by 3 main structures, being the HeidalPlass (the residence of the royal family), the Glass Parliament and the Airship Tower, this district is wealth, power and privilege personified. Streets are much cleaner than other districts, there are proper sewers at work and law upheld by a mix of very regular watch patrols, private guards and of course the Royal Guard. It has the smallest population of the 3 northern districts, about 7000 in total more or less, though much higher wealth as a result of its residents and prestige.
The Kings Bridge connects this district to the CuynKwarteer on the southern bank.
Government type is Autocracy, Alignment is Lawful Neutral, Settlement Qualities are Prosperous, Tourist Attraction, Rumourmongering Citizens.
Corruption=1, Economy=6, Lore=3
This area is a commercial hub and also a residential area as well, where the majority of prosperous merchants, the cream of the artisans and craftsfolk and the various Embassies and Consulates of other nations and citystates reside. It is much more cosmopolitan than the elitist RegusKwarteer and more prestigious than the UstKwarteer, and it is the fiscal brain of the city. Decent watch patrols and well paid private guards and mercenaries help keep the peace, and many upmarket shops and traders ply their wares and skills here. Notable landmarks are the headquarters of the Worshipful Guild of Merchants and Traders, the Council of Guilds, and the Cathedral of Korvaio known as the DeiHuus Cathedral. There are also the more specialised ship and airship building concerns located here, and it is a hive of activity as both private and military vessels are built and maintained here. Its population of the northern bank is large, being 15000. Government type is Council (Merchants, Guildmasters and Foreign Dignitaries holding some sway), Alignment is Lawful Neutral, Settlement Qualities are Holy Site, Prosperous, Tourist Attraction.
Corruption=0, Crime=6, Law=1, Society=+6
This area sits between the more northerly RegusKwarteer and the more southerly Raalskheer, and it is a largely residential district with a good mix of shops, quality market areas and homes of middle class affluent citizens. About 18000 people make their homes and living here, and it is linked by the Olten Bridge to the southern bank. Streets are well enough maintained, the watch have a regular presence, but incidences of private security and guards are much lower than the other 2 affluent areas. It has a free and respectable feel to it, and some parts of it have a bohemian feel due to the numbers of students and scholars of the University. Notable landmarks include the RostusMarket (large open aired trading area), the GreenSquare (a large public parkland enjoyed by day and avoided by night) and last but by no means least the Kaastig University, which contributes to the aforementioned bohemian and scholarly mien of the district.
Government type is Autocracy (the UstBurgher, elected every 4 years), Alignment is Neutral, Settlement Qualities are Academic, Tourist Attraction.
Corruption=2, Economy=2, Lore=3
The Southern and in fact larger part of the city is split into 6 districts, and are quite varied compared to the northerly ones. They are The Docklands, the SchaapsKwarteer, the GaartenKwarteer, the CuynKwarteer, the Traadsvecht and lastly and by all means leastly, The Murk. They are detailed as follows;
Located on the south bank and linked to the Raalskheer by the impressive Zeevurt Bridge, this area is the commercial and economic muscle of the city, as its extensive wharves, canals, warehouses and mercantile concerns help power the economy of the city and so the land. It is always abustle and rarely sleeps as ships, riverboats and travellers from all over Accitaine come here to trade. It makes extensive use of canals for moving goods from the district to the city and beyond. It also has a good mix of typical dockside taverns, gambling houses, inns and brothels, and its population is about 10000 or so. Notable landmarks include the Zeevurt LightHouse that sits at the halfway point of the bridge to guide ships to moorings, and the DreschMarket (a frantic stock exchange). Government type is Council (the KomesCouncil), Alignment is Neutral, Settlement Qualities are Prosperous, Strategic Location.
Corruption=2, Economy=2, Lore=6
A residential area for low to lower middle class people, it has seen better days but still has 15000 people calling it home, and makes do without the drama or glamour of other districts.It falls between the Docklands and the CuynKwarteer and is linked to the UstKwarteer by the Olten Bridge. It has few landmarks to commend it, though it is criss crossed by the highest concentration of canals in the city, acting like a hub of the canal networks. There are some watch patrols, but the Headquarters of the City Watch called Fort Thaurne is located here, and its imposing structure acts as the one decent landmark for people to note. It has a criminal element at work as well, with some gangs and guilds at play beneath the surface, and there is a good amount of games halls, small theatres and brothels that dot the canalsides. Government type is Overlord (Watch Kommander Elody Haapstrum is a singular woman who knows the ideals and practicalities of modern law enforcement), Alignment is Neutral, Settlement Qualities is strategic location.
Corruption=3, Economy=4, Lore=3
The GaartenKwarteer is a lower class residential area, where much of the urban poor make their homes and livings within. It has a thronging populace of 20000 living within its teetering sprawl, and though named for the small gardens and green areas that used to dot the locale, it has long since lost many of those green places. Its borders touch on a number of areas, and the closer one gets to the borders, the more like the new district it appears, from the almost pleasant CuynKwarteer to the feared and malevolent Murk. Shops, stalls, markets and traders work here, and if there is a typical life for the urban poor Heidelen, it is here. Apart from the locally famous BegeerStraat Church there are no real landmarks here though there is a strong sense of community and local spirit, and a Gaartener is famed for being generous and even handed when they have no good reason to be. Government type is Council (the GaartenKomus), Alignment is Neutral Good, Settlement qualities are Insular, Superstitious, disadvantage of Poor. Despite the close proximity of the Murk, it is still surprisingly resistant to crime.
This is the most pleasant and middle classed area in the southern part of the city, linked as it is to the RegusKwarteer by the Kings Bridge. 10000 people make their homes here, and it has a pleasant ambience, also having the famous Salozan Opera House and Theatre here, a great draw from all over the city and the country. The people may have airs and graces compared to other southerly districts, but the again they are linked to the greatest district by a wonderful, impressive bridge. Good watch presence and some private guards from the wealthier citizens help keep peace on the streets, and the Burgomaster elected 4 yearly tries hard to run the place like a kingdom in miniature. Government type is Autocracy, Alignment is Lawful Neutral, Settlement qualities are Insular, Strategic Location, Tourist Attraction.
Corruption=3, Law=1, Society=+1
Where the less pleasant and social trades are practised and also the actual entrance to the city itself, it is where a number of workhouses, small factories, tanneries, breweries and abattoirs do their work, and it is accounted to be quite an unpleasant place to live. A number of cityfolks from the poorer districts travel daily to work in the establishments here, and is a sadly necessary part of society. There are some hostelries that cater for the boatmen, teamsters and other workers that stop here, but only the poorest people or those scrimping the last groat out of their overheads choose to live here.It has a population of about 5000, and also a small watch fort at the gate. The National Central First Arterial Canal Hub is located here too, coordinating the transport of canal based commerce. It is a grim place as well due to the malign influence of the Murk, and this is reflected in its statistics. Government type is Council, Alignment is Neutral, Settlement Qualities are Strategic Location, Prosperous.
Infamous, iniquitous and worse, the Murk is a gloomy slum sitting like a rotten stain in the city, spreading its tendrils of influence into other districts. No census with any accuracy has been attempted for many years, and its high, delapidated and crumbling houses and tenements loom over dismal wicked streets and canals. It is where the infamous criminal organisation known as the Guild of Red and Gold reside, led as they are by the legendary individual titled Lord Smile (supposed to be a position that changes holder from time to time), a position or person shrouded in secrecy and the deepest villainy. Those who live here are truly living lives of wretchedness beyond the light of Korvaio. Gambling dens, brothels where the darkest sins imaginable can be realised and rumours of blood sports are the least of what is rumoured here. The watch presence is normally nil, and only very strange and unusual incentive can induce any to enter, and then in massive force. There is no place or city in Accitaine that has anything close to what lies in the Murk. Government type is Secret Syndicate (the Guild of Red and Gold), Alignment is Chaotic Evil, Settlement Qualities are Notorious, Disadvantage of Hunted.
Corruption=6, Economy=0, Law=-9, Lore=+2, Society=-2.
Danger is +30. Try never to go.