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The Town of Keplan [WIP]

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Keplan

“Keplan was once a flourishing mining city, but its annexation to Calpheon brought many changes. It remains a primary source of ore for Calpheon but lately its production rate has been decreasing and strange rumor are circulating among the workers.”
- Knowledge on Keplan

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Locations

North Quarry: The Northern Quarry had to be abandoned after it was completely taken over by petrified workers and stone monsters.

Quarry Byway: “A mountain pass east of Keplan. In times past, it was used as a trade route between Keplan and Serendia. Now it is only used by a few adventurers because of the orcs who occupy the Neutral Zone.”

Oze’s Pass: A mountain pass between the Northern Quarry and Southern Quarry, named after Lord Faust’s deceased daughter. It is said to be roamed by monsters.

Faust Forest: Lord Faust’s hunting grounds.

Keplan Vicinity: An area connecting Keplan, the Quarry and Faust Forest, currently plagued by stoneback crabs.

Keplan Quarry: The Quarry is currently the largest mine in Keplan and the workplace of most of the town’s workers. The lower levels have workers mining for minerals and Black Crystals on the mountain side as well as in in the ravines penetrating the hills of Keplan. The upper levels are accessible via several wooden elevators and interconnected by bridges spanning the ravines.

Keplan Hill: The upper level of Keplan and the Quarry, accessible through elevators in the town and lower quarry. Most of Keplan’s clergy and defense forces as well as the Trina Knights are present here, trying to fight off the petrified workers that keep attacking. Lord Faust observes the town below from a Balcony.

Extraction Mill: The Extraction Mill is located within the city itself and used to extract pure black stone from the ground.

Alchemists’ Laboratory: There are many alchemists in Keplan who are currently trying to invent a cure for the Petrifying Disease in this laboratory.

Aid Station: The Aid Station is where the people of Keplan receive treatment for the Petrifying Disease and other medical issues – if they can afford it.

Daycare Station for Children: The youngest children of Keplan are taken care of here and receive preventive treatment for the disease as long as their parents can afford the tuition.

The Inn: Keplan’s inn is led by Ivan DeRose, a woman from Calpheon and ardent Elonian

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Economy

The town of Keplan has always been famous for its high-quality minerals and alchemists, but the true rush began, when Black Crystals were discovered there in 275. The initial findings were of minor quality, but soon lead to the construction of Keplans Extraction Mill that was capable of extracting Black Stone of superb quality from the ground. The construction of the mill led to Calpheon’s seizure of the town in 276 however. Now all of Keplan’s trade runs through Calpheon and although not all Keplanians are happy with this development, the exclusive trade with Calpheon is earning Keplan a fortune. The biggest profiteers of this trade are Black Crystal dealers like the Calpheonian Greco Gorda who is supported by the Kallis Parliament in his endeavors.

Since the production Black Crystal and the trade with Calpheon, the gap between rich and poor has rapidly grown bigger in Keplan and many people are now seeking opportunities to get involved in the Black Crystal business. This development might also have led to an increase in crimes in Keplan, including the theft of Black Crystals that are not guarded properly due to the lack of available soldiers.

With the recent troubles in the mines, the number of workers in Keplan declined and accidents are happening more frequently, slowing down the overall production and creating a constant need for new laborers.

The Black Stone trade also opened up opportunities to earn good money as a go-between and in goods transportation.

Another resource that appears to be a common trading good in Keplan is obsidian.


Black Crystal

Keplan has the second largest Black Crystal deposit next to Mediah and the valuable resource is mined from the Quarry as well as extracted from the ground underneath the town with the Extraction Mill that served as a model for its equivalent in Glish. The Black Crystal from Keplan is filtered, polished and eventually shipped to Calpheon where pure Black Crystals go for a way higher price than their impure variants. Quality Black Crystal is predominantly found in the Extraction Mill and recognized by its different hue and the uneasy feeling it causes. Some workers describe it as a sinister energy crawling across their body and making their spine tingle or a chill running through their body whenever they’re mining a pure Black Crystal. Others claim they feel captivated by the Black Stone or feel a fascination for it that they can’t quite explain. Pure Black Stone can also evoke a feeling of dizziness. Some of the stones the workers are carrying omit black smoke and are perceived as heavier than usual by the ones carrying them. Some inhabitants of Keplan are blaming the Petrifying Disease on the Black Stone and believe that increased exposure to it makes it more likely to become infected, but still continue mining it because they need to earn a living.

Mining more than one’s daily quota or finding pure Black Crystal means the worker is paid more.


Alchemy

Keplan is most famous for its mining sites, but also for its alchemy that can be freely practiced there. Many alchemists flee the oppression of Elionism in Calpheon where alchemy is considered heresy and find their home in Keplan. The influence of the Elionian church is weak there and the Alchemy Lab is earning good money due to the efforts to find a cure for the Petrifying disease and the counter-measures they have developed so far.

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Politics

Marco Faust, the elderly lord of Keplan, is said to be suffering from the Petrifying Disease as well. As his only daughter Oze has passed away,* there is currently no heir to his position and the people are afraid that his death might lead to chaos and an opportunity for the influential Black Crystal dealers to seize control of the town. It is said that Lord Faust hates foreigners, maybe due to Calpheon’s occupation of his town.

Another influential force in the area are the Trina Knights, one of the two big knight orders in Calpheon. They have an outpost south of Keplan that is currently under heavy attack by the lizard-like Saunil. The Trina Knights’ representative in Keplan is an orc named Lilvanos who organizes the defense against the petrified workers on top of Keplan Hill.

There is also talk about a notorious mad scientist called Marni who used to be an alchemist in Keplan. He has a laboratory nearby where he experiments on living creatures and turns them into bizarre monstrosities.

Security in Keplan has been reinforced due to the situation in the quarry and in the south. There’s also talk about blocking certain tunnels at the Extraction mill and destroying bridges in the Quarries with bombs to keep the petrified workers away, although these measures might cause harm to the miners.

There also is a small group of people lead by Klam Cessory that is forming an Anti-Black Crystal Organization. They claim it is the cause of the Petrifying Disease and led to the downfall of dignity and honor in Keplan.**

While the people of Keplan generally seem to know about the spreading disease, it is implied that information about the true extend of the infection and especially the current situation in the Northern Quarry is suppressed by the government. Some workers are still considered missing by their friends.

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*I’m afraid I haven’t found anything on the circumstances of Oze’s death yet, maybe that’s part of the main quest?
** Klam Cessory’s knowledge entry also says something about Elionian priests frequently visiting the Extraction Mill, but I don’t know what exactly that’s supposed to imply.


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The Petrifying Disease

This terrible disease is also called the Curse of Oze, as some workers believe it to be connected to the lord’s daughter’s unjust death. The disease is unprecedented as far as diseases go and causes everyone infected by it to slowly turn into a creature made of living stone, losing their mind in the process. Early symptoms are itching and numb limbs, but the current paranoia among the people of Keplan frequently leads them to mistake minor issues like aching muscles or a running nose for symptoms of the disease. The straining work in the mines frequently leads to these misconceptions. People without symptoms of the disease are sometimes not treated at all.

Keplan’s alchemists are trying to invent a cure, but some people start to lose hope that they will ever succeed. They succeeded in inventing medicine that is capable of preventing and alleviating the disease however. They also prepare military equipment, sentry uniforms and special clothing with a kind of alchemical processing that is meant to prevent infection.

It is not sure what caused the disease. Some people seem to believe that it is caused by exposure to pure black crystals and spreading from the Extraction Mill, while one alchemist in the laboratory claims that the disease stems from Marni’s Lab or might at least be cured with clues from Marni’s studies. The Black Stone theory is supported by the large amount of infections within the Extraction Mill compared to the Quarry however.

The Aid Station offers treatment to anyone who can afford it, but keeps increasing its price now that more and more people need help and are either infected with the disease or believe to be due to the ever-present paranoia that has gripped the town. There are procedures to follow and space at the Aid Station is limited. Although the disease has been considered non-contagious so far, there appears to be a case of infection among the nurses at the Aid Station that gives cause for concern.

Many people have already fled Keplan, sometimes abandoning their supposedly infected family members, others are torn between leaving their work and hometown or saving their lives by leaving.

There recently seems to have been a massive outbreak of the disease at the Extraction Mill and a suspicious person in the Aid Station seems to have something to do with the spreading of the disease.


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People

The people of Keplan belong to various different species, the most common being humans, orcs, dwarves, goblins, shai and demibeasts. Most demibeasts seen in the town belong to the clergy however. In general, the inhabitants of Keplan are considered a bit rough around the edges and not particularly strong in their belief in Elion.

There are a few people in Keplan that maintain a strong belief in Elion and pray to him for help in these dark times, but the general population isn’t very devout and even priests can be seen drunk and proclaiming that all hope is lost.

The overall mood in the town is one of fear and worry about the future of Keplan and one’s own security. Many people have family members that are infected with the Petrifying Disease and are ever paranoid about catching it themselves. While some attempt to drown their worries in alcohol, others work hard, either completely ignoring the dangers and focusing on their daily quota or in order to earn enough to get their loved ones to safety or be able to afford their treatment at the Aid Station. Some people are beginning to doubt the effectiveness of the treatment however, and others are infuriated by the realization that their hard work is barely enough to earn the money for the treatment of a disease they might catch during that very work.

Many are afraid to work at the Extraction Mill as it is the place where an infection is most likely, but they are forced to work despite their anxiety. The soldiers and supervisors have to be strict and sometimes threaten the workers with violence if they refuse to do as they’re told. As a result, the workers feel stuck between their petrified co-workers and the supervisors, some fearing that either group might kill them if they attempt to run.

Despite the occupation by Calpheon there seem to be very few cases of Keplanians openly disliking Calpheonians.

There’s lots of dust in the air around Keplan that makes it hard to breathe and leads people to cover their mouths with cloth.*

While human, shai and dwarven workers appear to be treated equally, orc and goblin workers appear to be heavily discriminated against in Keplan. They’re referred to as “monsters” and are supervised by designated Monster Labor Overseers, mainly orcs, although they don’t identify themselves as “monsters”. The relationship between monster workers and monster overseers appears to be tense however, apparently it’s not uncommon for “accidents” to be instigated. These often result in injury.

Although orcs are way stronger than the other species working in Keplan and are acknowledged to work harder, they are paid less than humans. Only humans get to wear protective clothing and get their medicine first although both humans and monsters are affected by the Petrifying Disease. The orcish furniture dealer Ambroke has to share 80% of his profit with the dwarf Hamir who got him his position. Monster Overseers like Quezen are speaking up against the unjust treatment of their people, but their superiors seem to have more pressing matters like the Petrifying Disease on their minds.

One of the Overseers explains the large amount of monster workers in Keplan with the humans pushing them there, indicating that they are members of the migrating monster tribes that chose to join human society instead of fighting. He also claims that they have nowhere else to go and therefore have to stay in Keplan despite the dangerous situation

There are also instances of casual racism as well as instances of admiration (or envy) for other species.

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* not actually seen ingame
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I mostly focused on the town itself and the safe parts of the quarry so far, but wasn’t able to do any quests there or explore the dangerous places like the deeper tunnels of the extraction mill during beta. Feel free to add any additional information you have.
I took about 300 screenshots in total and obviously couldn’t include all of those… I tried to link my source where I deemed it necessary, but if you want to see proof for anything else that I’ve written here, just ask and I’ll put up a screenshot.
Posted Feb 24, 16 · OP · Last edited Feb 26, 16
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Great write up! May I include a link to it in our lore section?
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SIDRA MADARA
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Posted Feb 24, 16
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Great write up! May I include a link to it in our lore section?

Sure, go ahead! ^^
Posted Feb 24, 16 · OP
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