The Verdant Archipelago Geographic Location in Awldor | World Anvil
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The Verdant Archipelago

There are two kinds of sailors I know: those who have never learned of the Verdant Archipelago and those who dream of visiting the Verdant Archipelago .
The Verdant Archipelago
A very verdant chain of islands. Possibly the place that the The Great Collapse scarred the least.
Make sure to check out the midnight version of the map by accessing the layers tool in the top-left corner.   The Verdant Archipelago is a tropical paradise located to the west of The Quassus Continent. The island's abundance of life even in the face of an occasional Magic Storm surprises and astounds many visitors. Back on the continent, many tales have been spun about how colorful and beautiful the islands are and of its fantastical inhabitants and wildlife- some of which is certainly the product of imagination or exaggeration. The archipelago is often cited as a desired vacation destination or a place to retire.

Along an Oceanic Rift

The Verdant Archipelago is located along a rift that exists within this area. Observations conducted in the area have concluded that the islands are slowly moving away from one another right along the rift. It is possible that parts of this archipelago was once a massive island that was split long ago. This seems to be supportive of the idea of drifting continents though such a theory has yet to be accepted by a wider audience. Regardless of the truth of the matter, expeditions to this area have consistently reported higher than usual geologic activity.

Native Culture

Tribes of mixed species inhabit the islands, including the Virra who are a people that seem exclusive to this region (note that some of their more adventurous souls have ventured to other lands beyond the islands). These people are as mysterious as they come for they prefer to avoid contact with foreigners. Their existence is partly confirmed for the recently erected stone shrines and other structures that dot the islands.   Below the surface lies two distinct kinds of nations: Mermaids and Tritons. The Mermaids in this region live a generally nomadic lifestyle, and are never seen by passing sailors unless they wish it. The Tritons have developed several permanent settlements within the underwater cliffs close to the island chain.   The fishes know more about the true names of these peoples and where they live. Surface peoples do not yet have any known means of navigating the depths of the oceans, though it is true the Ancients had developed the ability in the past.

Few Ancient Ruins

Where the The Ancient Order had left its mark on nearly all lands through many large settlements and connecting roads, the Verdant Archipelago possesses a curious lack of such ruins. The one notable exception being the Ruined City of Ekla to the south. Contemporary structures indigenous or otherwise are far more common in this region.   Another curiosity is that the geography of the Verdant Archipelago appears to be relatively unscathed by The Great Collapse compared to other regions. The lack of ruins and the relatively untouched condition of the landscape may be related. There is a developing theory that suggests that Ancient activity and the destructive power of the collapse were correlate with one another. Others believe that in reality there are many ruins awaiting discovery. That the reason these ruins weren't discovered yet was because they have been overgrown by the dense vegetation of the region.

Ancient Ruins of Ekla

This archipelago has an artificial island, the Ruined City of Ekla. It is quite unlike The Ancient Order settlements of metal most know. This enormous collection of ruins is made out enormous megaliths. It's most notable feature is the Ekla Pentagon, a wonder whose origins and purpose are a mystery. Some are beginning to believe that the Ekla City is even older than the Ancients and that they too had been studying the ruins in their time.   Since the area is known for its high geologic activity the ruins are subject to a faster rate of erosion. If the age of this structure is indeed far older than anyone believes, then it has proven to be unnaturally resilient. Perhaps arcane forces are at work to preserve it.

Even paradise has its share of dangers. I should know, for I am one of them!
Captain Zephyr , Pirate.


As a tropical paradise, the islands attract a wide variety of marine activities. Particularly from the Port Town of Paradise Shores. Merchant vessels make up a not insubstantial portion of shipping traffic through this region. Predictably, many disenfranchised sailors and others of renegade disposition set ambushes for these merchant vessels. Their plunder is taken to their settlement on Spiral Point. This settlement is a lawless port town known simply as the Pirate Lagoon, and the lawless town has been steadily growing with the other settlements of the region.


Second only to The Chivit Continent, the Verdant Archipelago is home to a numerous variety of life. There is a particular abundance of marine wildlife within this great archipelago. Massive stretches of coral reefs host vast and complex ecosystems.  
I have been to the Verdant Archipelago a few times in my life. I could never quite capture its beauty in my work.

Above the Sea

  There is only one mountain in the archipelago, and the islands are relatively flat compared to the continents. What the island chain lacks in craggy peaks it makes up for with a few gently sloping, jungle covered hills. These hills are found on the larger islands with most of the remaining islands mostly being flat.   The number of islands seems to change with each expedition, particularly concerning the count of the smaller, rocky islands near the extensive fissure. This has led some to speculate that this geologically active area could be producing new islands over time. Speaking of geologic activity, the islands are also home to many volcanic mounds that will ooze lava during certain periods of the year.   Caves can be found on several of the islands within this region. Some of these caves serve as access points to underground cave and underground river systems. The largest island contains the greatest underground network of caves and rivers.

Floating Islands

  The archipelago contains two kinds of floating islands: water and air. A collection of floating air islands are found hovering above the largest island in the island-chain. Floating water islands can be found dispersed throughout the archipelago, with most being located to the west of the great island. Arcane forces are certainly the reason for why these pieces of land can float, though their source is something of a mystery. Many believe that these islands are yet another instance of leftover magics from the collapse and that the effect will be lost over time.

Many focus on the bounties of the surface, which in the Verdant is plentiful and pleasant. A paradise of a sort for mortals. However, the real paradise lies beneath the waves; a world us walkers can only catch in too brief glimpses even when aided by magic. I've always regretted lacking gills of my own.

Below the Sea

  Under the surface lies an even greater variety of life. Vast coral reefs stretch across the distances between the islands. The shallow waters permit a veritable explosion of underwater plant life. The result of the combination of these reefs and plants creates what many consider to be the underwater equivalent of a jungle. The greatest of these lies on the Great Shelf.   The sight of this underwater forest is something to behold during the day, but during the night it is altogether astonishing. Many of the plants come alive in a glowing spectacle that illuminates the surrounding waters. Sailors have described lamps as redundant against the natural lighting provided by the underwater lights.

Vast Shallows

  Much of the archipelago is shallow water. When the tide is low, one can walk from one island to the other with little hindrance. It is possible that the island chain was a larger landmass at a time when sea levels were lower.

Azure Abyss

  Where there is a paradise there is also a hell to contrast it. To the north of the island chain is one of the deepest trenches in Awldor. Information about the underwater terrain surrounding the islands were provided by two sources: ancient documents and maps, and the underwater nations. It is said that great monsters live within this abyss and that they represent a constant threat to life in the archipelago. Ships have been known to disappear on occasion when traveling near this area. This has led many sailors to set courses around the area when possible.

Geographical Relation to the World

The world of Awldor.

All artwork is made by Starfarertheta unless otherwise stated.
Alternative Name(s)
The Luminous Reefs, Marine Metropolis
Included Locations

See that bit of seemingly isolated and untouched land? I bet somebody claims lordship over it for whatever reason fits their fancy.
— Lieutenant Parrot, Lunarian Navy

Who Owns the Islands?

In most lands, the soil is often claimed by some political power. There is reason to believe the same applies to these islands.   The true names of the indigenous tribes in this region remain unknown to those of us on the Quassus Continent. All that we know is that there are at least five that live on the island, and they have a complex history with one another. This history includes conflict. This was apparent when some sailors were on shore-leave, their camp was caught in the middle of a sudden battle between the two of the tribes. The incident occurred close to midnight. Four of the six who were part of this shore-leave party survived the sudden conflict.   The Archivists Guild has named these tribes as follows:
  • Ventus
  • Fons
  • Caeli
  • Arboribus
  • Terra
These names are based on the kind of terrain each tribe prefers. It should be noted that these tribes are only found when they want to be. They will avoid foreigners. How they do so is up for debate. Some believe they have simply mastered the art of illusion while others believe they have mastered more arcane means.   Outside powers have attempted to invade the islands through the hundreds of years since the collapse, but all such insurrections have failed to establish a lasting foothold. It is a small wonder that the indigenous peoples still allow others to visit the islands at all. Perhaps they understand that the actions of a few do not constitute a common desire for the whole?

On the Border of Two Oceans

The Verdant finds itself in the unique position of straddling the boundary between two great bodies of water, the Azure Ocean to the north and the Wowala Ocean to the south. The southern ocean is notable for its apparent greater luminosity compared to other oceans. Part of this unique feature is due to the greater number of bio-luminescent sea life. At night, inhabitants of the Verdant Archipelago are in a unique position to witness a darkened sea to the north and a comparatively glowing sea to the south. This difference serves as a unique navigational landmark for seafarers traveling through the region.

Lava Flows

Since this region is geologically active, lava flows are an occasional threat. Most of these occur underwater and help to form new isles. Luckily, lava flows are relatively survivable to a volcanic explosion if one is vigilant. It is believed that these flows are partly the reason for the high fertility of the soil of the Verdant Archipelago.   Lava flows are among the reasons for why there has been no serious settlement attempts by the Kingdoms of the Quassus mainland.

Is that a face? It looks really happy. Too happy...

The Smiley

Sometimes, geologic formations can produce an uncanny resemblances to persons or familiar objects. One such case is present here: a smiley is visible on Ancient maps of the region. The landmark has been included in contemporary cartography of the region. The strange formation can be found to the north of the islands.   No one is sure if the rocks actually create the illusion of a face or if it is merely a continuing bit of humor between cartographers across time.

Captain Zephyr
Character | Jul 25, 2021

A great and brutal pirate who successfully robbed the Mabara Guild.

Common Flora

  • Flowering Trees
  • Plumeria Flowers
  • Cup of Gold Flowers
  • Wax Vine Flowers
  • Protea Flowers
  • Palm Trees
  • Verdant Orchid
  • Silverswords
  • Sugarcane

Common Fauna

  • Seals
  • Giant Turtles
  • Parrots
  • Hawks
  • Verdant Goose
  • Verdant Man-of-War

Typical Magic Fields

  • Bubbles
  • Stamina
  • Confusion

Note(s) from the Archivists:

  The Verdant Archipelago; now there's a place that knows only fair weather. - Archivist Bob Ironrock   What about the occasional tropical cyclone? -Archivist Rena   Aside from the cyclones, that place knows only fair weather. - Archivist Bob   There's also a monsoon season during summer. - Archivist Rena   Fine, aside from cyclones and monsoons, the place knows only fair weather. - Archivist Bob   Don't forget about the rare, though definitely possible anytime, water spouts. - Archivist Edward   Forget I said anything. - Archivist Bob

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Mar 20, 2020 03:14 by Ademal

That map is utterly incredible!

Check out my summercamp by going here and checking out any of my gold-star articles!

Mar 20, 2020 13:28 by Starfarer Theta

Thank you! \o/

Mar 23, 2020 15:02 by Eidal (former Etalia) Louwatt

Ahh everything about this article is so gorgeous! Your map is amazing, and having the midnight layer is a super nice extra touch! Your layout is also on point, it makes it both easy to read and more interesting (read: my unattentive a** is able to actually focus), and the quotes really add to the overall feel of the place.   The only thing I'm kind of missing here is more images!

Mar 23, 2020 16:56 by Starfarer Theta

Glad you liked it! :)   I would like to have more images too, but my skill as an artist is limited and I don't have the means to commission stuff. Not yet anyway.

Apr 6, 2020 06:23 by Karen Kingman

I agree with everything here. Your entry into the contest was one of the first one's I looked at, and everything was so concise, organized, and well-thought out. I actually spent another 10-12 hours trying to learn BBCode and figuring out how the layout of the World Anvil pages work so I could up my game for my entry. Fantastic job! And your map w/ the midnight layer is killer. cheers!

Mar 31, 2020 02:50

So well thought out. Your maps are stunning, and I always enjoy reading the notes from the archivists :)

- Hello from Valayo! Featured work: How to Write Great Competition Articles
Apr 1, 2020 14:56 by Starfarer Theta

Thank you. :)

Apr 4, 2020 01:38 by Vuk R. V.

I love your map! And the night version, so beautiful and a beautiful idea! The smiley is a nice touch :)

Apr 10, 2020 04:15 by Lance McKenath

I love how bright your maps are, and your writing is very easy to read. I love quotes in articles, I do that myself.. it adds so much more immersion!! Only criticism I have is reading the thin side bar is a bit long, my brain keeps wanting to stop and catch up on the other side. Perhaps take advantage of the full length footer instead, and keep summarized and short information in that box? Beautiful article nevertheless! <3

Apr 22, 2020 18:34 by R. Dylon Elder

You have shown my world so much love. Bout time I returned the favor. Lo and behold, the first article I see uses verdant, one if my favorite words XD   It's the first time I've seen the world, but I'm digging it thus far. Very interested to see what magic storms are. I love it.   I like that you touch on the continental migration, though I'm not sure how it works in this world as it seems to be a little more prominent, or maybe just mysterious. The map is lovely, as said by others.   I'm kinda loving the idea of ruins made of glass. That's just awesome. I also enjoy the discussion on who owns the land. That's somethign not many think about. Excellent work!