The Anvil Quarter is Brazenthrone‘s center of industry. Here, dwarves can be found making things from steel, stone, gold, glass, ceramics and more.
One of the quarter’s more notable landmarks is the massive, communal Freehammer Forge, built to ensure that no dwarven smith is unable to practice his or her craft on account of being unable to afford a smithy of their own. Waterwheels power the Freehammer’s giant bellows, as well as two hammermills, a grinding mill and a rolling mill. The jewelers, smiths and engineers all have their guildhalls in the Anvil Quarter and the Royal Mint can be found here as well.
So, on Monday, I’m taking my first vacation since I started this. I’ll be going to Spain to attend a friend’s wedding on Monday and I’ll be gone for six days. That’s going to be pretty weird for me, since I’ve hardly even taken a day off in the last year and not drawing for six days seems like a totally alien concept right now. Luckily, my friends are getting married near the Alhambra and there is no version of reality in which I don’t take the chance to see that. It might end up becoming a map, who knows? I mean, not soon, but someday.
Next up is the harbor of Carthage, last month’s Cartographic Congress winner. I’m going to try to get it to you before I leave, but it’ll probably be pretty big, so I don’t want to make any promises.
And finally, this month’s Cartographic Congress has chosen Senator Williams’ proposal of a cathedral fortress. As it happens, I went to see a cathedral fortress several months ago and I was tossing around the idea of making a map inspired by it. Well, now it’s happening. If you’ve never heard of it, behold the Rock of Cashel.
Brazenthrone‘s Grand Temple is a religious complex dedicated to all the gods of the dwarven pantheon. I use Forgotten Realms deities for Brazenthrone, so the big golden gentleman in the middle would be Moradin the All-Father, surrounded by the other 13 gods of the Morndinsamman. The four larger statues are Berronar Truesilver, goddess of hearth and home (and wife of Moradin); Clangeddin Silverbeard, god of battle; Sharindlar, goddess of love and healing; and Dumathoin, god of mining and gems.
I said I’d be doing one of the larger maps chosen in the Great Vote next and I’ve decided on the small, but densely-populated merchants’ trade port island. In the vote, it was in the large category, but I’d say it’ll end up being what I’d normally class as a “huge” map (actually, I’d say it’ll be pretty massive). Also, as I said before, I’m looking to tackle Brazenthrone’s Anvil Quarter and Noble Quarter soon and one of those will probably come after that.
Here’s a version of this map without all the numbers and words on it. There’s DM notes, higher-res versions with even less words on them and VTT versions available to patrons, should you be interested.
This is the final floor of Brazenthrone’s common quarter, capping off the local shopping center arcade market and the presumably-expensive apartments to the north. Speaking of which, I don’t add a compass to my maps, but if you ever want to know which direction a map is facing, there are always two possible answers. Choose the one that satisfies you the most:
Whichever way is most convenient for you to use it in your setting.
The top of the map is north.
Another thing I want to mention, which also applies to all my maps (aside from region maps): the scale is always 5 feet. I don’t always include a scale, but it’s the same for all of them. I’ve had people tell me they use certain maps at a 10′ scale (particularly Brazenthrone and Finbarr’s Marsh) because they like a little more room, which I can understand, especially if you have a big party and you need to fit 8 or 10 players into one place for a fight. But, since 5′ is pretty much the “standard” and because so many people have a strong preference for it, I won’t be drawing maps at any other scale.
Alright, next up is the Assassins’ Keep, chosen by last month’s Cartographic Congress. Then I’m thinking I’ll knock out one of the residential districts of Brazenthrone, which will give me time to take on one of the bigger maps chosen in the Great Vote.
There’s DM notes for this map, VTT versions and all the usual stuff available to patrons. The annotated version is the same.
There will be one more level of Brazenthrone‘s Common Quarter, then it’s on to the next chamber. I originally planned for this to be three levels and it looks like I managed not to go crazy and make it into some 800-floor monstrosity. Which leaves me feeling strangely both proud of myself and disappointed. Hmm.
So, in news you don’t care about, I just bought new paper. AMAZING paper. If you’re someone who makes fantasy maps that are so large you need huge-sized graph paper, this is what you’re looking for: Rhodia. This one. I haven’t drawn a map on it yet, but I’ve tested my pens on it and it is GLORIOUS. We’ll see how much of a difference it makes in the end next time. Until then, back to work.
There’s an expanded annotated version of this map and DM notes available to patrons.
This is the first of three levels of Brazenthrone’s common quarter. This is the central hub of most of the city’s residential areas. The Amethyst Arcade in the lower right is a large arcade market with all kinds of shops and vendors’ stalls, built to keep the Quarter’s merchants in one place (and off the streets). There’s also a theater, a park, two fountains and a variety of bars for all your drinking needs.
There will be two more floors for this map, but it’s pretty big, so I’m going to do them separately. Next up will be the Airship of the Line, chosen by you in the Great Vote. After that, we’ll come back to the Common Quarter with the second (and maybe third) levels. Then it’s last month’s Cartographic Congress winner, the Library of Alexandria.
Here’s a version of this map without annotations. There’s an expanded annotated version of this map and DM notes available to patrons.
Just wanted to show you all how the ground level of the Common Quarter is coming. The big building in the lower left is a huge arcade market. To the right of that is a park. There’s also a theater, a temple and more than a few places to get liquored up, as you might expect in a place full of working-class dwarves (or any dwarves, really).
For comparison, this is about half the size of the Great Hall. It’ll be a few more days to finish the inks and color it. Speaking of which, I’d better get back to it.
This is the bottom of Brazenthrone, as far down as the city goes. While dwarves aren’t typically a nautically-inclined people, they’re happy to trade with those who are and deep gnome, drow and orog merchants come here to do business. The thing across the harbor’s entrance is a chain boom, which can be raised or lowered to control access to the outpost.
Next up is the map chosen by last month’s Cartographic Congress, the harbor fortress of Torchguard. Like the Underdark Outpost, it’s looking like it’s going to be bigger than I’d originally planned. It might actually be approaching the size of Neuschwanstein.
I suppose it wouldn’t be the first time I made modest plans and then went way overboard. I originally planned for the Great Hall of Brazenthrone to be four floors before I added another two. And that’s the biggest map I’ve ever made. How do you look at that and think, “It could be bigger?” Well, anyway, I hope you’re cool with that because I’m probably not going to stop.
This is where Brazenthrone sends the few criminals whose crimes are deemed too severe for a flogging, yet not quite warranting execution (they do love a good flogging).
The prisoners are housed in a series of oubliettes, sleeping in the narrow alcoves around the sides. Those deemed especially naughty are placed in the isolation pits. Gates at the entrance and the guards’ area prevent access by potential escapees. This could be an interesting place to have your players escape from or stage a rescue.
Next up is Old Madeleine’s Inn and Fighting Pit, then we’re finishing off the lower part of Brazenthrone with the Underdark Trading Outpost. If you’re a patron, there’s still time to vote in the runoff between the Airship of the Line and the Aarakocra Village in the medium category (the vote ends later tonight). When it ends, the large-ish category vote will begin.
I’m giving out the DM notes for this map to everyone because I think they’re pretty good and I want to share them. I didn’t think I’d have too much to say about Delvers’ Rest at first, but then it occurred to me that this would probably be the foulest-smelling place in the city. I won’t explain the reason here, it’s in the notes if you’re curious.
The next map is something I thought was an interesting idea. Do you remember the Buried Tower? That’s not a map anyone was looking for before I drew it, but people seemed to like it and found ways to use it. The next map is a bit like that. It’s different, but I think you’ll like it. After that is the Pits of Justice– Brazenthrone’s prison– which is adjacent to Delvers’ Rest.
Here’s the second edition of Brazenthrone History and Lore. New entries are marked with a red dot. The main things added are about the origin of the city and the unusual system of nobility in the kingdom.