Ankard: A City for Your Campaign or Adventure
As your party emerges from the mountain pass and all of you pause to take a short breath, the fog lifts and reveals the city of Ankard in all its splendor before you. Red roofs, stone towers, and impressive cathedrals rise above, seeming to touch the clouds. The air smells sweet with cherry blossoms and you feel invigorated as the sounds of bustling merchants, haggling vendors, and other signs of life reach your ears. Summer truly was the best season to visit.
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Ankard, the Gateway to the North
Ankard is known as the Gateway to the North, the last major stop before venturing into the untamed wilderness beyond the mountains. The city is a melting pot of cultures, with humans, dwarves, elves, and even a few gnomes living and working together. The local economy relies heavily on the trade that flows through the pass, and the city's merchants are renowned for their shrewd business sense.
Nestled at the foot of a towering mountain range, Ankard is a small city built at the mouth of a narrow pass. The city's buildings are primarily made of stone and wood, with roofs that are pitched steeply to shed snow during the long winters. Despite the harsh climate, the city bustles with life, and the sound of merchants haggling and travelers coming and going fills the air.
As you approach Ankard, you see the city walls looming before you, stretching as far as the eye can see. The walls are made of rough-hewn stone, with battlements and watchtowers at regular intervals. Just inside the walls, you see the city's main gate, flanked by two massive stone statues of dwarves wielding axes. Beyond the gate, the streets are crowded with vendors selling all manner of goods, from furs and pelts to exotic spices and precious gems.
The air in Ankard is thick with the smell of smoke, both from the city's numerous forges and from the hearths that warm the homes of its residents. You also catch whiffs of roasting meats and fresh-baked bread, as well as the occasional foul stench emanating from the city's sewers.
As you walk the city's streets, the sounds of commerce assault your ears. Merchants shout out their wares, while the clang of metal-on-metal rings out from the many blacksmiths' shops. You also hear the clip-clop of horses' hooves and the chatter of travelers, all vying for space on the busy streets.
Population: 8,000 (60% human, 20% dwarf, 10% elf, 5% gnome, 5% other)
Government: Council of Elders (made up of representatives from each of the city's major guilds)
Economy: Trade (primarily furs, pelts, and gems)
Defenses: City walls, watchtowers, and a small garrison of soldiers
Religion: Primarily worship of Moradin (dwarven god of creation and patron of craftsmen), but also a few shrines to other deities
Thorgarn Ironfist: Dwarven blacksmith and head of the city's blacksmiths' guild
Althea Whisperwind: Elven trader and head of the city's merchants' guild
Otho Stonehammer: Human captain of the city guard
Glimmerglow: Gnome inventor and head of the city's tinkers' guild
Well, that's Ankard in a nutshell! Let us know what you end up doing with this small city, and make sure to check out our Organic Towns book if you enjoy creating a town that lives and breathes like a real place. - Joe