Thursday, December 6, 2012

Adventure Inspiration: Cappadocia

Evocative, huh? Place torches where these electric lights are, some dungeon debris on the ground and a pair of glowing eyes far back in the hall and you've got an awesome adventure space.

This is Cappadocia, a location of vast underground cities, known predominantly for offering hiding places for Christians fleeing persecution. Cappadocia is located in what is modern Turkey:

According to Wikipedia these underground cities "have vast defence networks of traps throughout their many levels. These traps are very creative, including such devices as large round stones to block doors and holes in the ceiling through which the defenders may drop spears. These defense systems were mainly used against the Romans. The tunnel system also was made to have thin corridors for the Roman fighting strategy was to move in groups which was not possible to do in the thin corridors making it easy to pick them off." I can just see a bunch of gobbers causing an adventuring troupe hell in exactly such situations.
The whole area is a marvel of geological wonders, and an incredibly amazing source of inspiration for an adventuring area.
The entrances to the cities varied, but here are some examples:

There is much more online about this incredible site and its rich history, all which lend to endless creative inspiration. And it's just kind of cool to think how awesome our own world is once in a while : ) Churches were common in the Cappadocian underground cities, and here is just one example. Change the iconography and it's ripe for evil cultists ...

The sheer scope and size of the place boggles the imagination. I mean we are used to mega-dungeons, but I often find myself scaling back my inspirations when designing dungeons as somehow too over the top, or unbelievable. But Cappadocia literally tells you that anything is possible architecturally given the right stone to work with ...

This last piece intrigues me as I have no idea what the channels in the floor are for--water transport? sewage? blood from sacrifices? What do you think?

Assassin's Creed evidently has a setting for Cappadocia in its game, and I find these while searching for images to the palce. I'll end with these to bring the place to life as an artist imagined it ...

Have fun in your fantasy version of Cappadocia!