muse map

nambnb  asked:

I look in wonder at your skills with Thedas' map. I have a problem I wish I had an answer to: How does Redcliffe village work? We get different maps for it in DAO and in DAI (supposed eastern part) and they don't seem to fit together. I can also not make heads or tails of Redcliff's supposed location on the world map (like with position of rivers/lake) in relation to the mini map in, say DAI. Nothing seems to add up. Could you help me make sense of this? Maybe maps need some turning or sth.?

*blush*  Thank you so much for your kind words!  It is a labor of love…that occasionally causes me to want to tear my hair out.  ;)  Redcliffe is one of those places that makes not only my scalp to itch, but my eye twitch.  (So at least we are in good company.)  

Nothing about the geographical lore of Redcliffe makes any sense.  For example, the codex entry used both in Origins and Inquisition is full of nonsensical statements.  For example:

“King Calenhad Theirin once famously declared, “The fate of Redcliffe is the fate of all Ferelden.” Certainly, the castle is the first and last defense for the sole land route into Ferelden, and the country has never fallen to any force that did not first capture Redcliffe.”

Um…what?  Redcliffe is on the sole land route into Ferelden?  Redcliffe is even near the sole land route into Ferelden.  It may be closer to Orzammar and Gherlen’s Pass than West Hill or Highever, but you could definitely reach Denerim without having to travel close to Redcliffe.  

Now, you could definitely argue that it would be really, really bad idea to leave Redcliffe untouched if you planned to occupy Ferelden.  By the time an invader reached Denerim, Redcliffe could muster an army and use the southern arm of the Imperial Highway to aid Denerim or attack from behind.  So if this was the only incongruous information, I could deal with it, but then there are these nuggets:

“The castle, which despite being three times captured is popularly described as “unassailable,” also guards one of the largest and most prosperous towns in Ferelden. Redcliffe village is well situated near the mountain pass to Orzammar and the Orlesian border, and so serves as a center of foreign trade. For these reasons, Redcliffe is accounted an arling despite the smallness of the domain.”

Again, huh?  Don’t you mean the reverse?  Redcliffe is a village of about 200 people, but the arling itself is quite large.  Honnleath is part of the Arling of Redcliffe, and presumably parts of the Hinterlands are also included under its protection.  So it isn’t exactly small.  

And whatever the scale of the map you use to calculate how far it is from Redcliffe to Orzammar, it is strange to say that Redcliffe is “near” the pass that leads to Orzammar and Orlais beyond.  It is at least 150-200 miles to travel between Orzammar and Redcliffe.  There are several other Ferelden towns and arlings (Kinloch Hold, Wutherford, West Hill Bannorn, Waking Sea Bannorn) that should be better situated to profit from international trade than Redcliffe.  But it gets better:

“The inhabitants of Redcliffe village are primarily fishermen or merchants who ship dwarven goods through the pass from Orlais to Denerim. When the entire village smells of smoked fish on certain late autumn mornings, the merchants in their finery do their utmost to pretend otherwise.”

–From In Pursuit of Knowledge: The Travels of A Chantry Scholar, by Brother Genitivi.

Sigh.  Why would you take dwarven goods all the way south to Redcliffe if you plan to ship them to Denerim?  That tacks on hundreds of miles to your journey!  Just take the North Road!  

None of that makes any sense…unless you look at where Redcliffe was in The Stolen Throne.  

If Redcliffe were located where it was placed on this map, then the codex entry about it would make complete sense.  It would be a much smaller land area, but the position of the town would make it a far more likely trade center and “first and last line of defense” for Ferelden.  

There are even signs that this location almost made it into later maps.  

In spite of the fact that moving Redcliffe messes with the lore about the village, it appears on the southern shore of Lake Calenhad on every other map that Bioware has published.

So why did the developers move it?  Most likely it was game mechanics, or rather, button mechanics.  If Redcliffe had remained where it started out, it would have made the button placement on the Origins map rather awkward.  It is so close to Haven that players might have confused the two.  

(There is a similar problem with where the Temple of Sacred Ashes should be.  It should be very close to the edge of the game play map in the mountains to the west of the town, but in game it appears an equivalent of 35-65 miles south of Haven so it won’t be so close to the edge and it won’t obscure any writing.)

And most casual game players wouldn’t think there was anything strange about Redcliffe being so far from Orlais and Orzammar.  In fact I was really glad it was so close to Lothering the first time I played Origins.  Only when you are really examining the geography of Ferelden does its placement become questionable.  Am I 100% sure this is the reason?  Not at all, but the map sure is more balanced with Redcliffe at the bottom of the lake and easier to read, all of which is desirable in game play.

And then there’s the problem of DAI’s map.  Sigh.  So….I replayed a large part of the Hinterlands and did a bunch of math for this post.  And I now have a bit of a problem with my own map.  

I am pretty good with spacial relationships and so I used a lot of landmarks and large scale measurements to place various locations on the map I shared.  That works well when adding towns, temples, landmarks, etc from the various published maps, but it doesn’t work so well for the highly detailed area maps in Inquisition.  

I confess that I should have done a bit more math when I started to add Inquisition zones to my map.  If I had I would realized that this small neon green dot you see above is the equivalent of about 5 square miles, depending on which map scale you use.  I went with the smaller 1” = 50 miles scale. That dot is 1/16” x 1/16”.  That means there is more than enough space for the whole Hinterlands map, which is about 2-3 square miles, to fit into that tiny green square.  Wow.

(BTW, I went out to the interwebs to see if others people had come up with a similar area number, and found an estimate that all of the areas in the game put together (minus DLC) is about 45 square miles.  They probably went with the larger 1” = 70 miles.  That would make Thedas about the size of Western Europe, I think.)

So the reason it is difficult to figure out the DAI landmarks on the Thedas map is that the map is far too small for such minute detail.  I’m going to have to ponder what to do now that I know the true scale we are dealing with and update my map accordingly.  

Thanks for the ask!  It made me do math, and we’ll get a better map at the end as a result.  :)


blackdogeandrevelations  asked:

ok so in Centripetal Force, Ch.5 the comment about Game of Thrones and victor's like ha we should watch it and yuuri's like NOT THAT SHOW. omg i laughed for like a good 10 minutes and i still crack up thinking about it

HAHAHA I mean?? Just imagine them watching GOT together??

  • Yuuri trying to explain all of the different houses and getting really passionate about it. Victor lost him when he started explaining the difference between “Stark” and “Karstark” but he’s enjoying watching Yuuri make wide hand movements and point at a map of Westeros.
  • Victor being horrified by the graphic scenes and hiding behind Yuuri’s back. He pretends to be more scared/scarred than he is because he really just likes hugging Yuuri from behind.
  • As soon as Yuuri mentions that there’s a language in the show (Dothraki), Victor’s interest is piqued and he immediately does a lot of research into it.
  • Yuuri admits that he used to have a crazy big crush on Gendry and Victor getting low-key high-key jealous of a fictional character.
Black Holes and Revelations: Favorite quotes from songs.
The Signs as Muse Lyrics
  • Aries: "Don't waste your time or time will waste you."
  • Taurus: "Why can't you just love her? And why be such a monster?"
  • Gemini: "Paradise comes at a price that I am not prepared to pay."
  • Cancer: "When will this loneliness be over?"
  • Leo: "Take off your disguise; I know that underneath it's me."
  • Virgo: "You make me sick because I adore you so."
  • Libra: "...And we'll pray that there's no god to punish us and make a fuss."
  • Scorpio: "...And I was all alone, wearing just socks and a phone."
  • Sagittarius: "As conspiracies unwind. Will you slam shut or free your mind? Or stay hypnotized?"
  • Capricorn: "...And I've had recurring nightmares, where I was loved for who I am."
  • Aquarius: "Who you were was so beautiful. Remember who you were."
  • Pisces: "This life's too good to last, and I'm too young to care."

31 Days of Muse | Day 15 - Favorite drum part: Map of the Problematique