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Cier is a continent where Dojo Duels take place and other past events. It has several areas with its own seasons.

The History of Cier

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Ancient Cier

>1300 BC

Long ago, many races populated Cier, ranging from humans to beastfolk to sea-dwellers: all presided over by a mythical race known as the Seraphs. Said to wield incredible power, the Seraphs declared themselves the guardians of Cier.

This changed with the arrival of the Somnians, an alien race whose advanced technology rivaled the power of the Seraphs. The presence of this new race greatly upset the balance established by the Seraphs. This upset quickly devolved into an all-out war between the Seraphs and the Somnians.

The Somnian-Seraphic War wreaked havoc across the entirety of Cier as the two ascendent races vied for control. The Cierans, for the most part, were caught in the crossfire, with both Somnians and Seraphs using the various races as expendable forces. Weapons of devastating power were created by both sides. Alongside it, the all powerful RICE was a renewable source of super-energy created to power their weapons. It’s usage forced the Somnians into a final stand on the far western coasts of Cier, where they would create their own super weapon to retaliate.

The repercussions of the War devastated Cier. The Cierians, whether fighting for Somnians or Seraphs, were caught in the crossfire. As part of a last ditch effort, the Somnians created a projectile-like weapon with reality warping capabilities. The weapon launched itself from Somnus and landed in the Central mountain range of East Cier, creating a pocket dimension known as the Shadow Hold. The desperate activation of the Somnian super weapon caused the Somnians and Seraphs to disappear.

Not long after, remnants of the reality-warping technology in Somnus malfunctioned and caused a reality-tearing fog in western Cier. This fog- known as The Veil, is said to hide some remnants of Somnian technology in Cier.

Two religions were founded in the aftermath: Seraphism was founded by the Lumaurans who revered the Seraphs; and Systemism was founded by the Aetherians, an isolated race that had prospered technologically under Somnian influence. With the ascendant races gone and a lack of rule or leadership, a power vacuum formed in Cier and there was an opportunity for the people to come to power.

The Kaihon Empire

1300-754 BC

Attempting to uphold the legacy of the Seraphs by governing the world, Seadweller races from the Eastern Sea came to land at what would become present-day Kaihon and established an empire. Over the next 400 years, the empire expanded across East Cier, taking over the fields of Aegis, at-the-time semi-tropical Magmus, and what would become The Moche, except for Neira - a harsh land of ice and snow. The Kaihon Empire proceeded to establish trade overseas with West Cier, and Kaihonese culture reached and heavily influenced the Bahp Region.

While the Kaihon Empire prospered, a great evil was brewing within the Shadow Hold. By 850 BC, barely a hundred years into the Empire's reign, Shadow creatures were spawning from the Shadow Hold, toppling numerous holdings of The Empire in the south east. The expansive forests south of the Shadow Hold were corrupted, dark energies warping and twisting the benign woods into what became known as the Dead Forest. The Moche’s ecosystem was corrupted to a lesser extent, with the marsh and wetlands becoming extremely toxic.

The infrastructure of the Kaihon Empire began to fracture due to its inability to defend itself against such a widespread threat. Combined with a long-standing resentment of Seadweller rule, the Empire soon devolved into civil war. The Empire crumbled and many Seadwellers were forced back into the ocean depths. Some believe a clan of these Seadwellers disappeared altogether, in search of the lost city of Azurus. Former Empire provinces, such as Magmus and Aegis, became independent regions ruled by minor kingdoms. In the wake of the massive civil war, many former citizens of the Empire fled to the Bahp Region.

The Great Dojo Era

754-18 BC

In the wake of the civil war, many former citizens of the Empire fled to the Bahp Region. Over the next three centuries, numerous smaller powers within Bahp rose, clashed, and fell. During this time, one particular faction in Bahp discovered the Rice previously planted by the Seraphs. Basic methods of harnessing its powers were developed, with said methods kept a strict secret from the rest of Cier.

Using the power of RICE, the faction succeeded in unifying Bahp and rose to power. An alliance founded by Bahp formed, spanning across all of West Cier: this alliance reached from the Bahp Region to the northern regions of Navia and the Micfortress highlands, and the region of Blackgate south of Bahp, among other powers. The Beastfolk of Raitera and the nomadic tribes from the Coquo Desert remained separate but cooperative to The Alliance.

Combining their vast resources and knowledge, the Alliance founded the Great Dojo, an organization dedicated to unifying and educating the peoples of Cier. Under the watchful eyes of the 6 Dojo Elders who headed the organization, the Great Dojo flourished, bringing with it a golden age of prosperity and development. Countless innovations and discoveries were made during this time, with the cultivation of Rice being chief among them.

The Great Dojo Era also saw Aether’s first contact with the mainland since the Somnian-Seraphic War. Since the War, Aether had developed separately from the rest of the world, using leftover Somnian relics as a foundation for their technology, far surpassing that of the rest of the world despite being isolated. From the 2nd century BC onwards, Aether underwent a period of outward exploration, discovery, and establishment of trade and communications with other nations. However, mistrust and tension slowly grew over the following years between Aetherians and Foreigners, resulting in Aetherian extremists to begin lobbying for isolation.

For 400 years, almost all of Cier live in relative peace.

The Downfall

18-0 BC

In the year 18 BC, a warped entity seeped from the Shadow Hold infiltrated into the lands of the Great Dojo and possessed the Lumauran Elder. It twisted and corrupted him, eventually turning the Elder into an avatar of the most terrifying and powerful creature to devastate Cier: The Shadow. Shadow forces struck first in the Bahp region, striking the Bahpese down despite the aid of their allies. Powerless against the Shadow, the elders of the Dojo used the last of their power to scatter the Dojo’s RICE stockpiles across Cier.

The dispersion of RICE is thought to have caused cataclysmic events across both continents. In West Cier, great swathes of Navian territory rose to form the Navian Isles, the Raiteran Forests transformed into great jungles with regenerative properties, and anomalous storm systems flooded Raitera Valley; East Cier faced the spontaneous eruption of volcanoes in Magmus and the sudden cooling of weather in northern Neira. Whole regions were decimated by the Shadow creatures, causing many factions to fall during this time: the Shadow horde razed Blackgate Landing and besieged Micfortress, with a sizable population from Blackgate fleeing the region to form the settlement of Blackwatch further west. The Shadow also Kaihon was forced back to its capital, losing much of their territory in East Cier.

Facing overwhelming odds, the remaining factions united under the banner of The Alliance: with Micfortress and Blackgate leading in the West, and with Kaihon and Neira leading in the east. After establishing a base of operations on an island chain between the two continents, the Alliance launched a multi-pronged assault to repel the horde, dividing and obliterating pockets of the Shadow’s forces.

The final battle took place in winter of 3 BC in the Coquo Desert, lasting twenty-five days and culminating in the defeat of the Shadow. The Alliance spent the next three years purging Cier of remaining Shadow forces and allegiants. At last, Concord was declared by the Alliance.

Aftermath

0-60 AC

Despite Concord having been established, true peace existed only in name. Many nations were crippled by the Downfall. Nearly all Seadweller cities in the Eastern Sea were destroyed, with many of the survivors migrating to Kaihon. Northern Neira withdrew from the Alliance and began to close itself off from the rest of Cier.

Lumaurans, gravely ashamed by the corruption and destruction caused by one of their own, assumed a more neutral position in world conflicts. After the rising of their lands during the war, Navians discovered that they had gained a multitude of powers. Blackgate began to rebuild, fortifying their defences with high gates, eventually renaming themselves as Highgate Landing. Kaihon grows as a naval power in the East. After a coup, Aether adopted an isolationist policy and the leaders of the Systemist Ideology took power. Blackwatch officially declared itself independent of Highgate Landing, and tension grew between the Southwestern states.

The Alliance was never officially disbanded, but weakened and faded away in the wake of the Downfall. With the remaining factions unable to cultivate Rice, they were forced to compete over the finite Rice scattered by the Elders. As a result, a new profession was founded: Rice Hunting. Rice Hunters were often organized groups of scholars, warriors, mages, and the like who would travel across Cier in search for the Rice scattered by the Elders.

A weariness of magic in the Southwest started to form due to the magical nature of the Shadow horde, seeing it as dangerous and unpredictable. Blackwatch in turn believed technology to be superior, as it became a core value of their society and culture. This ideological divide and competition over Rice led to the period of conflict largely known as the Greed.


The Greed - Part One

60-350 AC

The Greed was as much a period of innovation as it was a time of war. Foremost among these innovations were the methods of refining and using Rice developed throughout Cier - Micfortress began to employ Rice in magic as an enhancer and magic source; Aether slowly integrated rice into their technology as energy sources and materials; Highgate experimented with using Rice in primitive alloys, making Rice-enhanced weapons, armour and equipment.

Mechanical technology also took hold in the Southwest during the Greed, starting in Blackwatch. From 100 AC onwards the city of Blackwatch started to develop a variety of clockwork and steam-powered machines, with artificers spreading as a profession across the region. The first industrial revolution later in the century, however, started in Aether: despite attempts by the isolationist government to contain this, Aetherian technology was gradually smuggled out to the mainland and reverse-engineered in the Southwest. By 200 AC Blackwatch underwent an industrial revolution of its own, mass-producing airships, firearms and automata that spread throughout the Southwest.

In 341 AC, Aether finally reopened to the rest of Cier after over three centuries of isolation. Soon after, Blackwatch declared itself the most technologically advanced nation in Cier, spreading propaganda that Aetherian technology was inferior. A disagreement with Systemist rule lead to civil war in Aether, and the Systemists were overthrown. Aether became a democracy, but Systemist beliefs persisted. Highgate then established trade routes with Aether in hopes of advancing their own technology. A treaty was then signed that established formal diplomatic relations between Highgate and Aether.

The Greed - Part Two

350-670 AC

As Southwestern technology spread north, states outside the Southwest began to develop magic-powered variants of Southwestern technology for ease of use in their societies. Though Navia stayed away from modernisation, considering it unnecessary due to their innate powers. Micfortress championed the development of what would come to be known as magetech (among other names). By 500 AC the West Cierian states were largely on par with each other in technology.

At around 350 AC, the constant conflicts within West Cier began to settle down. Commercial and scientific competition rose, and West Cierian powers began to colonise other Cieran nations, ushering in a colonial era. Highgate settled on parts of the Aegis coast and established extensive trading routes. Blackwatch claimed a southern portion of the Raiteran forests, parts of Magmus, and later the Magdurus Mountains. Micfortress, who initially intended to colonize Neira, decided instead to ally with them. Meanwhile, factions rose to power in the Bahp region, dividing the area into rivalling nations.

By 400 AC, Blackwatch, Highgate, and Micfortress had become the major powers of Cier. Blackwatch grew into the Blackwatch Confederacy: A single nation ruled by an authoritarian meritocracy and leading West Cier in mechanical technology. Highgate Landing became capital of the Highgate Union, an association of nations that was the leading power in trade and equaled the Confederacy in strength. The Micfortress Domains, a constitutional monarchy, became the main power in the northwest and leader in magical endeavors. Tensions between these three nations grow over the next centuries.

From 500 AC on to the mid 600s, much of Aetherian technology was developed via government projects and gradually commercialized. Among these was the creation of Cier’s first fully digitized computer in 586 alongside a primitive information network dubbed “Aethernet” in 598. At the same time, the first advanced AI was programmed in Aether, which would in turn, assist in the synthesization of Cierum Fibre in 654 AC.

The Era of Conflict

670-746 AC

In 670 AC, after nearly seven centuries, methods for Rice cultivation were re-discovered in Bahp. With this discovery, an internal divide between two groups grew within Bahp Town: Pro-Cultivists believed that the cultivation of Rice should continue for the sake of Cier as a whole. Anti-Cultivists believed that regrowing Rice would only bring conflict, and advocated against the continuation of Rice cultivation. With this struggle, the Pro-Cultivists reached out to their allies for help on the situation, specifically Micfortress. Soon after, rumors were leaked out that Bahp Town was keeping the Rice to themselves and only sharing it with Micfortress. These rumours led to the Pro-Cultivists and Anti-Cultivists fighting amongst themselves over rice. Over the years, the fighting and disagreement led to the Cierian War.

The Cieran War

The Cieran War began in 688 AC between nations in the Bahp region and spread to the rest of Cier. Primarily supporting the Pro-Cultivists were Micfortress and Highgate, with help from Aether, Neira and Aegis. Supporting the Anti-Cultivists were Blackwatch and its colonies in Magmus and Raitera, with Navia staying partially neutral.

The Blackwatch Confederacy, motivated by expansionism, nationalism, and a need for resources, attacked the Highgate Union. Aether provided weapons and supplies to aid Highgate despite Highgates’ request for military intervention. Navia abstained from fighting but unofficially sided with Anti-Cultivist ideology, while Micfortress helped their allies in Bahp.

In the Spring of 716 AC, Micfortress cast a magical barrier over the Rice fields of Bahp Town. Cut off from outside help, the Anti-Cultivists within Bahp Town lost power. Blackwatch found it impossible to pierce the barrier, and after almost a year of sieging the fields, they, their colonies, and the remaining Anti-Cultivists were forced to concede and pay reparations. This was known as the Treaty of Auxelles.

Interwar Period

With the signing of the Treaty of Auxelles, most of Cier had been appeased and the world experienced a temporary peace. Due to its lack of involvement in the fighting and its prolific war trade, Aether remained relatively unharmed and economically superior to the other nations that partook in Cierian War. Taking advantage of its booming economy, Aether began major construction and renovation of its capital, known as Aether 2.0. Meanwhile, the idea of a “New Cieran Alliance” began to circulate in Micfortress. The divides of the Cierian War still lingered and grew throughout the decade. Most notably,  the Treaty was resented by the defeated factions, seen as being oppressive. In 730 AC, the Aetherian economy collapsed, causing other nations to suffer economically as well, setting the stage for conflicts in the Southwest.

Highgate Civil War

In 739 AC, Highgate Union’s leading nation overthrew its government and established a monarchy. This Monarchy swiftly captured many key nations of the remaining Union. By the end of 739 AC, with the Monarchy’s victory imminent, the Union requested for Blackwatch to assist them. With Blackwatch’s intervention, the Union was able to force the Monarchy’s surrender after a year of intense fighting. Aether, though, was unable to provide aid to either side due to their war with Blackwatch. After the war, the Union asked for the return of the territories captured by Blackwatch. Blackwatch returned most of it, but held onto a sizable portion as compensation for the war.

Aether-Blackwatch War

Blackwatch's invasion of Aether in 740 AC has mostly been attributed to a need for resources and historical animosity between Aether and Blackwatch. Using an overwhelming quantity of manpower and equipment, Blackwatch invaded by sea and quickly claimed large swathes of Aetherian territory. From the beginning, Aether was at a disadvantage: besides Blackwatch having the element of surprise, Aetherian forces were overwhelmingly outnumbered by those of Blackwatch, the best of Aetherian military technology was difficult to mass-produce, and the Aether 2.0 project, among others, had further taken a toll on Aetherian resources (such as RICE and Cierium Fiber). Aether had further been deprived of their main ally by the Highgate Civil War, leaving them to face the invasion on their own.

In 4 short years, Blackwatch had nearly taken over the entirety of the Aetherian Isles. Prompted by massive civilian losses and the advancement of enemy forces, Aether’s government prematurely launched Aether 2.0 in summer of 744 AC. Blackwatch attempted to lay siege to Aether 2.0 to no avail, as the attackers failed to damage or board the floating city. Once Aether 2.0 departed from the archipelago, Blackwatch began occupation of Aether. Due to the excessive destruction of Aether, the civilian population of Blackwatch and other nations condemned the military for its actions. After much deliberation, remnants of the Aetherian Military and other forces formed a resistance group within occupied Aether. Lasting no more than a month, the resistance was brutally quashed by Blackwatch’s forces.

By 744 AC, the Highgate Union had been threatening to retake the land that Blackwatch had previously claimed during the Highgate Civil War. With the aid of the newly-reformed Cierian Alliance, an ultimatum of all-out invasion from multiple fronts was made to Blackwatch. By winter of the same year, Alliance forces began pushing into the Blackwatch Confederacy. With the mounting pressure from the Alliance’s invasion, Blackwatch ordered their forces to pull out of Aether and ceased occupation. The last of the Blackwatch forces would leave by spring of next year, ending the war.

The New Alliance

746 AC-Present

In the spring of 746 AC, the New Cieran Alliance was officially founded, and membership was extended to most Cieran nations. Blackwatch initially rejected the invitation, but after a coup overthrew the war-centric government, they accepted. After the coup, most in Blackwatch were against war and the production of war machines, but the pro-war lobby believed that war would bring Blackwatch financial stability. This conflict in interests would continue for the next few years.

In order to promote international community and security, the Alliance greenlit the creation of the Cieran Protection Front or CPF; this military and peacekeeping force of the Alliance is composed of volunteers and various militaries across Cier. Shortly after the establishment of the CPF, an elite division of operators was formed to regulate the growing population of mages, super humans, and meta-entities, known as the Meta Regulation and Containment Initiative, or MRCI.

The New Dojo was founded in the winter of 746 AC by the Alliance in collaboration with the Bahp region. This was originally done to organize and plan for fair and peaceful rice distribution amongst all members of the Alliance. The Alliance would determine which nations needed the most Rice based on several factors, and the Dojo would distribute the Rice.

In 747 AC, the Highgate Peace Treaties were signed to address Blackwatch and the aftermath of the Aether-Blackwatch War. Blackwatch was obliged to several conditions: Reduce its military size and budget, pay reparations to the invaded nations, and commit a substantial part of its industrial output to the Alliance. Another main focus of the Treaties were to aid Aether in its recovery. Unfortunately, the Alliance faces the wastelands created by the intense bombardment, interference from rogue factions and looters, and corruption among members of the Aetherian factions who take repair funds for themselves would severely halt the recovery of Aether. Finally, the Treaties also granted independence for West Cieran colonies in Magmus, Raitera, and Aegis, among others.

The New Dojo

755 AC-Present

In 755 AC, the Duelist System was established by the Dojo as a way to promote friendly international competition, as a method for distributing Rice to every region, and promote economic circulation. It was agreed that an international Dojo Duel Tournament would take place every 5 years, and the first tournament was held. Over time, Dojo Duels as a concept began to be adopted by regions as a sport and form of entertainment. Many smaller Dojo-hosted and nonofficial Duelist Tournaments and individual fights began to be held regionally. In 759 AC, under the protection of the Alliance, Bahp Town resumed cultivation of Rice for the Dojo to distribute.

Despite the massive popularity of Dojo Duels, many felt uneasy of the strength of these duelists. However, the majority regarded incidents involving duelists to be uncommon and infrequent issues, and assumed that MRCI would deal with such threats. This opinion would change after the second official Dojo Duel Tournament, which took place in 760 AC. After a horrific accident in the final match of the tournament, a small, inhabited island of Navia was destroyed. Outraged, Navians rallied for stricter dueling rules and regulations. Many blamed the MRCI for its lack of ability to handle the situation, but realized that the organization was simply underfunded and needed to be bolstered in order to handle higher level threats.

Present Day: 765 AC

Despite the efforts of the Alliance, Aether has yet to be fully restored and still holds resentment against Blackwatch and Aether 2.0. Navia has recovered in the 5 years since the dueling incident, and has successfully advocated for better safety within the Dojo Duel Tournaments. As a result, dueling incidents have decreased, and the third Official Dojo Duels Tournament is held without incident. Recently, Magdurus has experienced increased seismic activity. No significant damage or injuries have been reported. The source of the seismic activity is yet to be known.

The Lands of Cier

NaviaAether RuinsBlackwatchMagdurusCoquo DesertBahp TownRaitera ForestRaitera ValleyMicFortressMagmus RidgeDead ForestEternum CoastThe DojoAegis FieldsThe MocheShadow HoldKaihonMt. NiveusCrystal TaigaNeiraThe VeilAether 2.0Highgate LandingBijouLumaura SanctuaryWither's ReachAzurusRuins of Somnus
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More info on the individual lands of Cier can be eventually found with their own separate articles. A short summary of these lands are included down below as well.

North-West

Navia

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- Magic is extremely commonplace in Navia, particularly so since the Downfall. The effects of this are many and varied – among them is the suspension of the Navian Isles many kilometres above ground, often attributed to mineral deposits activated by a magical upsurge – though there are many smaller instances of supernatural phenomena that come and go throughout the islands.  

One of these effects are the Navians’ natural abilities. It is a well-known fact that Navians often possess a number of innate powers that are unique to their people, such as flight and expelling concentrations of magic. One in ten thousand men might be born with an inborn magical ability in neighbouring Micfortress: on the other hand, in Navia one would be hard-pressed to find someone without inborn magical abilities of any sort. This is theorised by some Micfortress scholars to be the result of magical energy radiating from minerals in the Navian Isles, though many Navians believe these skills to be innate.

As a result Navia has declared itself as a race separate from other humans, and has had little reason to change or revolutionize itself in past centuries. Whereas it might be something of a stretch to label the Navians a “proud race”, it is no secret that conservatism and tradition run strong in many parts of the Isles.

Ruins of Somnus

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- A wasteland shrouded by the hallucinogenic mists of the Veil, Somnus is visited by few. Those who do often seek the ruins of an ancient race, destroyed in a war dating back millennia. Though much remains unclear about the Somnians, it is known that they were an extremely advanced civilization. Artifacts from Somnian ruins employ materials and mechanisms absent in all Cierian technology (except that of Aether), and have often far surpassed it in both efficiency and ability.

Outside the Veil, Somnian ruins are sparsely scattered throughout the various Cierian regions, and it was through these that the existence of the Somnians was first rediscovered. Notably, there are many more Somnian ruins on Aether than in the rest of Cier: an increased Somnian presence there has been correlated with greater technological advancements in Aether, at least in the pre-Downfall era.

Micfortress

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- While magic is less common in the Micfortress Domains than in Navia to the north, mages are by no means rare on the river-laden plateau. Micfortress’ approach to magic is different from its northern neighbor, with greater emphasis on analysis and understanding. Micfortress is near-unrivalled in its study of the arcane, and the Micfortress Institute remains a leading school in the magical arts.

Unlike Navia, Micfortress accepts technology and modernity, allowing for its coexistence and synthesis with magic and tradition: the melding of magic and Southwestern technology has been one of the Institute’s pursuits since its foundation three centuries ago, and remains so to this day.

Micfortress is a major patron of the Alliance, and has representatives in many of its aspects – most notably that of the Duels, in which numerous Micfortress mages have a high standing.

The Veil

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- Many tales are told of adventurers wandering into The Veil only to never be seen again. Not only is this land shrouded with miles of thick mist and clouds, it has been rumored that after the spread of rice during The Great Downfall, the magical grains enchanted this mist to cause confusion and project mysterious illusions to the minds of unsuspecting travelers. There are stories where travelers in this land would see their lost loved ones or their most sought out desires, luring them deeper into the mist to then wander The Veil for years. It is said that the one’s lucky enough navigate past The Veil might wander into the ruins of an ancient powerful civilization containing massive amounts of untouched rice and information revealing unknown, unpracticed magic.

Raitera Valley

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- The Valley of Raitera is known to be a cursed land that is permanently battered by violent lightning storms. Before the curse, storm systems from the west sea were known to occasionally reach the valley, but during the events of The Great Downfall, the falling rice had violent effects on the storm clouds of Raitera. The enchanted storm lit up the valley with countless lightning bolts, causing great destruction to both the land and its local factions. Some factions however, managed to take take this cursed storm and use it for their own benefit. The last surviving Raitera factions had access to immense sources of energy from both the fallen rice and electricity from the storm, resulting in the development of electrical manipulation and weaponry. Their cities look very unique, littered with hundreds of metal rods and generators to harness electrical energy from lightning.

South-West

Aether

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- The broken city of Aether lies quietly off the coast of Cier. Because of the great war with Blackwatch, this city is littered with craters and demolished buildings, but there are also signs of a civilization that is rebuilding and repairing damage within the city. Before the war, Aether remained the leaders of beautiful architecture and modern technology way ahead of its time. Unlike Blackwatch, the engineers and architects of Aether took advantage of the magical properties of the fallen rice and applied it to their technology, creating highly advanced systems such as artificial intelligence and computers. Years later, they were able to create a new material fused with the rice called “Cierium fiber”. Nearly weightless and stronger than steel, these fibers were used to construct a new portion of the city later to be named Aether 2.0. During this highly ambitious project, war was suddenly declared by their main trading faction, Blackwatch and the invasion took the peaceful city of Aether by surprise. Although being highly advanced, Aether was not prepared for an all out war like Blackwatch who have been amassing weapons from giant factories months before the attack. The Aether factions defended their land the best they could, creating their own advanced weaponry such as unmanned war machines and pulse rifles. The sheer number of Blackwatch soldiers was overwhelming and the fall of Aether was imminent. Since the start of the war, the engineers and architects of Aether frantically worked on getting Aether 2.0 operational, modifying the massive city for aerial flight. Even with the use of Cierium fiber combined with the efforts of top engineers, many did not believe lifting an entire city was possible, but they had no other choice but to either finish the project or face complete annihilation. Civil disputes started to rise when rumors spread that only half of Aether’s population would be taken onboard Aether 2.0. All the Council members and the upper class were taken in first while the lower class population were left behind. Chaos filled the city as Blackwatch soldiers surrounded Aether while commoners were desperately trying to get into Aether 2.0. The gates were locked and everyone silently watched as the Mammoth city slowly rose up from the ashes of the Aether ruins. Half of the population was left behind and anarchy quickly spread as the war continued. The ones left behind were prepared to make their last stand when suddenly, a peace treaty was demanded by the reunited Alliance. Blackwatch reluctantly stopped the siege after threats of heavy sanctions from the other factions and the people of Aether were spared. With no centralized government or rule, the Aether Ruins split into multiple rogue factions and districts. The people of old Aether felt betrayed by their Council and have vowed to seek revenge upon both Blackwatch and the new floating city of Aether 2.0. These ruins are now patrolled by bandits and rogue factions with access to highly advanced technology modified for war. It is known that the blacksmiths here make the best swords and knives in Cier by modifying the leftover Cierium fiber and applying it to blades to be extremely light and balanced for combat. The districts in Aether still abide by the rules of The Alliance to receive aid from other factions, but tensions still run high between Blackwatch and Aether Ruins.

Aether 2.0

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- After an executive fiasco between the Council and the people of old Aether, Aether 2.0 excludes most visitors as it ominously floats throughout Cier collecting knowledge and data from the safety of the clouds. Ever since its lift-off from the Aether Ruins during the war between Blackwatch, all connections and communications with the new Aether have been broken with The Alliance. An inner circle still councils the city much like the original Aether, but their intent seems much more elusive than simply gathering more knowledge. With Aether adopting all of the top engineers and architects from the old city, it is assumed that the level of technology from Aether 2.0 far exceeds that of any other faction in Cier. The most recent information about Aether 2.0 is only seen through the Duelists that are sent down to the mainland to participate in the duels. Many think that the Duelists are only there to collect data of other factions. These Duelists have been known to harness amazing, almost futuristic armor and weaponry, and have been known to always place high in the Duelist roster.

Raitera Forest

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- With the constant flow of water and humidity from the Valley of Raitera, what once used to be a small grove is now a mammoth tropical jungle known as the Raitera Forest. The falling of rice during The Great Downfall further empowered this forest to obtain unnatural attributes. The vegetation of this land would grow at an alarming rate; Trees would mature within a few days and smaller plants would sprout within hours. This in turn gave the nearby city of Blackwatch an industrial advantage as they were able to forest these enchanted trees indefinitely without losing the resource. Some say that deep within the Raitera Forest hides a rogue faction that is highly adapted to the nature’s environment. Blackwatch lumberjacks have reported claims of being watched by strange humanoid creatures above the trees, observing the movement coming from the city, but no attacks were confirmed.

Blackwatch

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- This colossal, heavily industrialized city, remains one of the strongest factions of today because of their sheer population and technological advances during the wars. Being the first city to expend all of its rice to feed its massive population, Blackwatch took the initiative to abandon The Alliance and actively seek out war between rivaling factions, one of them being the great war against Aether. The war between Blackwatch and Aether lasted many years. The countless bombardment of shells and mortars to the island reduced Aether into ruins before The Alliance was reunited and a treaty was demanded. The ceasefire however was not absolute as Blackwatch continued to push war efforts despite the talks within The Alliance. In many ways, Blackwatch had the tactical advantage after The Great Downfall. Having access to infinite lumber resources from the Raitera Forest, the city boomed in infrastructure and technology. Inventors of Blackwatch were known to create complex machinery and weaponry without the dependency of rice as they believed their technology was far superior than any form of magic. The countless engineers and architects within the city created over a thousand variations of weapons, armor, rockets, and war machines.

Highgate Landing

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- This bustling city is best known to be the center of trade between the main factions of The Alliance. What used to be a small fishing port for The Great Dojo, Highgate Landing was forced to reinforce its walls and weapons after The Great Downfall. The city nearly fell from the invasion of shadows from the east, but with the help of the falling rice, their soldiers were able to obtain great strength and constitution during battle. Since then, the members of Highgate further practiced the refinement of the rice to forge enchanted weapons and armor. Most of Highgate’s residents were supporters of the wars, mostly fending off attacks from Blackwatch, but after The Alliance was reformed, they switched their stance to end the fighting between factions. Many refugees, Duelists, and tradesmen come to Highgate in search of shelter, commerce, and the legendary armory, making Highgate one of the most culturally diverse cities in Cier. The Highgate faction is known to march their soldiers through Magdurus Pass to guard the rice fields of Bahp Town and secure the neutral zone.

Neutral Grounds

The Dojo

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- The central library of all of Cier; a great, majestic place located on a small island and surrounded by cherry-trees and wandering duelists. It is located right next to Bahp Town and Aegis Fields. The Central Ground for all of Cier, The Dojo acts as a sort of tranquil sanctuary for those who seek wisdom.

Bahp Town

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- The Bahpese region spans numerous climates and numerous cultures. Owing to its large population, its extensive coastline and its many resources – not least that of Rice – Bahp has historically flourished as a region, only cut short by the ravagings of the Downfall.

The Downfall, the most crippling event in Cierian history, struck hardest in Bahp: crushing its settlements, killing uncountable numbers of Bahpese, and poisoning the land for over a decade. Though much of the Shadow has been purged by the present day, its legacy remains in pockets of warped nature and corrupted landscape that have not been restored even after centuries.

Bahp largely recovered from the Downfall but fell prey to the conflicts and divisions of the Greed, as did many of its neighbours. This drew to a close with the destruction of the Cierian War, after which the Bahpese factions joined Micfortress in the New Alliance. In this way the Bahpese region has regained much of its pre-Downfall stability.

Magdurus Mountains

Mainlands

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- The Magdurus spans all throughout west Cier, starting from MicFortress, wrapping all the way down to Highgate Landing. People say that the Magdurus used to serve as natural borders for The Great Dojo, showing just how large the ancient faction really was back then. These mountains are not just made of solid rock; Within lies a complicated series of caves and tunnels that run through Magdurus. It’s known that multiple factions from Highgate Landing, Blackwatch, and even the people from Raitera have carved through Magdurus, making tunnel systems for easier passage through the mountains and desert. Deserters from multiple factions were reported to usually find refuge in these tunnels to form mini rebel factions and strongholds inside the mountains.

Magdurus Pass

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- Right next to the Magdurus and meeting the sea, Magdurus Pass connects Highgate Landing with Bahp Town.

Coquo Desert

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- The Coquo is a dry, desolate place with hardly any signs of life or civilization. Legends say that the Coquo wasn’t always a lifeless wasteland, and it actually thrived with villagers and farmlands within the old Great Dojo faction. It has been said that during The Great Downfall, millions of people fought on this very land to slay a giant shadow beast who was to blame for corrupting these once fertile lands. Countless bones and skeletons dot the sands of the Coquo, showing signs of massive battle scenarios from the ancient past. Because of its unforgiving environment, factions dare not to travel through the Coquo without good reason. Some say a magical oasis can be found deep within the dunes, containing a spring of enchanted water known to have many healing properties. Not many have found this spring as it is believed that the oasis changes locations every day and disappears during the night.

Aegis Fields

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- The Aegis Fields is known as the buffer between the lands of good and evil. With hundreds of miles of rich grassy terrain, these fields have absorbed the energy of magical rice to produce an aura of healing properties. Some say these fields keep the horrors of The Dead Forest at bay and provide a good resting point for adventurers to tackle the Neira Pass. Others find it as a good neutral area to fight in duels or challenge other factions. It has been said that after the sun sets, the fields lose their color and change into a lifeless purple-grey. During this time, the spirits of The Dead Forest are able to run free and have been known to wander these fields until dawn.

Bijou

- Bijou is a region recently unearthed by significant seismic activity in the Magdurus region. The earliest  Bijian people were thought to have existed during the Great Dojo Era. These peaceful rock beings seek a higher echelon of enlightenment and internal happiness through spiritual meditation. After being rediscovered by geologists who were studying the surface region above them, Bijou has been a welcome surprise to Cier, alongside their powerful exports such as Cierites, gemstones, and other precious materials. This formerly isolated civilization believes that their resources can help bring peace and happiness to the uneasy world above.

North-East

Lumaura Sanctuary

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- Not much is known about the Lumaura Sanctuary, but occasionally people off the coast can spot a massive floating castle that represents a monastery. It is believed that the Lumaurians are an advanced angelic faction that comes from the unknown beyond the mountains of Niveus. The large castle emanates a bright white light, making it difficult to look at directly. Some rumors have said the Lumaurians take on the form of real angels and mythical creatures, some having wings and the power to control light and dark. Others speculate this faction simply watches over Cier just to study the inhabitants and participate in duels to test their strength. There have been a few Duelists speculated to be from this holy sanctuary because of the nature of their great skill in fighting and their unique powers to manipulate light and use powerful magic.

Neira

Mainlands

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- The Neira is a beautiful ice-land decorated by impressive statues and sculptures crafted by the Neirian faction. The inhabitants of Neira are very territorial and protect their sacred snow from any outsiders, attacking any adventurers coming in or out of the Neira Pass. The faction is well known to the people of Cier but any attempts of diplomacy or peace are always met with silence. After The Great Downfall, the people of Neira have been known to specialize their art in refining the rice to practice ice magic and invent deadly frozen weapons known to rival the toughness of steel. It is speculated that the people of Neira have a secret pact with the elusive faction of Azurus.

Neira Pass

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- The infamous Neira pass has been accountable for countless deaths of adventurers who dared traveled through. Narrowly paralleled by two giant cliffs, the pass is not only an extremely dangerous place for rockslides and avalanches, but it is also the perfect grounds for ambushes by the Neira faction, bandits, and mountain beasts. It is said that anyone who is able to pass through the Neira unscathed should be well respected. Many Duelists have perished attempting the pass in hopes to find Azurus or even to traverse the impassible Mt. Niveus.

The Crystal Taiga

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- The Crystal Taiga is always covered with a delicate film of snow. Anyone who can survive in such a hostile environment would easily be a seasoned warrior. Not much is known about this area as whispers of sound and gossip are dampened by the forest and snow. The precious rice that have become embedded in the snow are extremely rare and hard to find. Creatures of the Crystal Taiga that are fortunate enough to stumble upon these granules have become dangerously strong, thus making The Crystal Taiga a dangerous place to live.

Mt. Niveus

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- These massive snowcapped mountains called Mt. Niveus are famous for being the largest mountain pass in Cier. Reaching tens of thousands of meters high, it is well known that these mountains are literally impassable without highly specialized gear to traverse these peaks. There is no written record of what is beyond Mt. Niveus. Some say there are hundreds of other unknown factions (much like Lumaurians) that live beyond the mountains and others say it is a dead end snowy wasteland.

Azurus

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- The city of Azurus is a place not many know to exist and it is still debated if such a city is actually real. Some say there lies a giant underwater city encased in an enormous barrier to isolate the faction from participating in any wars or encounters. Legends describe the Azurian faction to be highly intelligent and advanced, having unlocked the art of using rice to manipulate water and ice. Without any involvement in the wars or The Alliance, it’s speculated that the Azurians have been stockpiling rice by diving deep underwater and picking them off from the ocean floor ever since The Great Downfall.

The Unknown

- Not much is known about the Unknown, surprisingly.

South-East

Shadow Hold

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- The Shadow Hold was once seen to be an ordinary mountain-pass until it was seen splitting in half and falling apart after an ear-splitting cry was heard resonating from west Cier. A distinct cyan glow could be spotted emanating from within the mountain and rumors mention hundreds and thousands of shadows flooding out from the gaping mountain, plunging into the mid sea and migrating west towards the direction of where the noise came. After the spread of rice, it has been said that the creatures from this “Shadow Hold” have grown more intelligent and evolved to create a stronghold for evil to thrive. It's known that deep within the Shadow Hold lies tantalizing crystals that radiate negative energy, corrupting the minds of anyone or anything that draws near. Ancient scripts describe such a mountain where pure evil was born and manipulated the Great Dojo faction to send its rice to the mountain's cavity. It is written that these crystals inside Shadow Hold absorbed the rice giving birth to countless abominations, demons, and shadows.

Dead Forest

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- A combination of the many lives taken from the Eternum Coast and the mass exodus from the Moche left this forest into a dead rot. Seemingly impossible to get through, The Dead Forest was not particularly hostile in its condition, but when the rice was spread throughout the land, The Dead Forest, came back to life, consuming anyone who dare entered. Most of the dead, or undead, came from the mass exodus of The Moche during The Great Downfall. Thousands of settlers were consumed by the forest, causing it to grow at an uncontrollable rate. It’s said that the spirits of the consumed are still trapped within The Dead Forest and some adventurers from the Aegis Fields can hear desperate cries for help echoing from the blackened trees.

Eternum Coast

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- This mysterious coastland is known for its unpredictable rock formations and treacherous coast. With no possible way to dock or swim to these shores without being crushed by the violent waves, the Eternum Coast has claimed many lives of sailors in search of Azurus. After the fall of rice during The Great Downfall, the Eternum Coast evolved to have more disturbing attributes. While The Dead Forest contributed to the killings of thousands of early settlers escaping from the Moche, it was said that the spirits of the dead would wander out of the forest and become trapped within the Eternum Coast. Distant sailors passing by the coast would claim to see odd misty figures slowly wandering the shores only to stop and stare at the ships passing by. Rumors have it that the forbidden arts of necromancy are practiced in these lands, taking advantage of the trapped spirits and using them for dark magic.

Magmus Ridge

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- A chain of islands formed by violent volcanic eruptions, Magmus Ridge is an unforgiving location. It has been said that these volcanoes lied dormant for hundreds of years until the rice was spread across Cier during The Great Downfall. The ridge reacted to the rice’s energy, bursting to life and coating the land with molten rock. Much of the Magmus faction residing on these isles perished from the sudden overflow of lava, but the few who survived stubbornly refused to abandon their homeland. The Magmus faction since have adapted to endure extreme temperatures by using the enchanting properties of refining rice in their own way. With such high temperatures scorching the ridge, the Magmus faction worry little about outside invaders from the Shadow Hold or The Dead Forest. Instead, they focus their efforts on building impressive weaponry and honing the ability to manipulate fire.

The Moche

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- The Moche used to be a small peaceful settlement from Highgate Landing, but after the events of The Great Downfall, it was partially buried alive by a giant mountain-slide from what is now known as the Shadow Hold. Now, The Moche is an incredibly acidic and toxic wasteland. Only those who have an innate immunity to such atrocious conditions or those who chose to use rice to immunize themselves from the harsh environment are able to thrive in these lands. The waste caused by the abominations from the Shadow Hold mixed with the heat from Magmus Ridge made The Moche an incredibly hazardous environment. However the factions that reside here have taken advantage of the harsh chemicals and rice in the area to produce the most dangerous of poisons and acidic weaponry in Cier.

Sources

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