The nation of Craterhold derives its name from that of the ancient, ruined citadel from which the old Crater Kings ruled Medial C2 and D4. Demolished by successive waves of internecine conflict among the noble houses, official neglect, and - most recently - Voxelian invasion attempts, the ruins have been reoccupeid to serve as an informal center of governance for the nation.
Craterhold shares the general demographic makeup of the eponymous nation at the center of which it lies. Unlike most other regions of the state, however, residents of Craterhold tend to be more civic-minded and, paradoxically, more deeply enmeshed in the constant intrigues that plague the Craterhold Moot
Eight noble houses of Craterhold hold territory within the municipality of Craterhold; as with other parts of the nation, assent to district regulations is indicated by a citizen moving to the district and establishing residency. Because the interests of the noble houses overlap in the region - especially with regards to preserving what remains of the old Craterhold ruins and controlling traffic in the C2/D4 commissure in the center of the city - the noble houses have established the Craterhold Moot as a city council to pass and enforce laws which affect the city as a whole. The Moot's Noble Counsel is comprised of a representative from each noble house elected for ten year terms by citizens within that house's district. A group of three non-noble citizens are elected via public votes for three year terms to form the Moot's Citizen Counsel, the votes of which are used to prevent ties.
In addition to the house militaries of the noble houses within the city, the municipality of Craterhold maintains a professional army comprised of veteran soldiers from each house military. The Craterhold Moot appoints separate generals for ground and aerospace operations; the municipality has no naval assets. The cliff sides leading into and out of the C2/D4 inflection layer are heavily invested with fortifications, bunkers, artillery, and anti-air emplacements, forming the breakaway colonies' 'rear' bulwark against assault from the Grand Army of Voxelia.
Because of its layered nature, the city of Craterhold is a popular destination for archaeologists and anthropologists looking to study the development of the Elovisian culture. Businessmen looking to operate in the nation of Craterhold's famously open commercial and industrial sectors frequently patronize local hotels, bars, and antique markets while awaiting meetings with prospective clients.
The most notable architectural feature of the municipality of Craterhold is the remains of the old citadel. During The Human Arc's medieval period (also known as the Age of Exploration), the crater-like box canyon that dominates Medial C2 was the site of constant warfare between tribes of Elovisian expatriates from the Old Voxelian sphere of influence. The so-called Crater Kings were any of a multitude of successful warlords at the time, and each sought to claim the 'fissure' as a prominent seat of power. As this ambition also brought with it the risk of invasions and rebellions to depose the would-be kings, each warlord expanded on the fortification surrounding the commissure in concentric rings, with the internal dividing walls of the ever-expanding baileys delineating the future locations of the various districts. At intervals, plagues, famine, drought, or successful invasions would wipe out most of the city, Ironically, it is only in the Age of Reclaimation - the most violent period in Manifold Sky history in terms of raw body count - that the endless cycles of civic death and rebirth have been curtailed by the implementation of organized, plural governance. As a result of this iterative construction, the civic architecture of Craterhold is an amalgam of ancient, medieval, and more modern styles, with each layer built around and on top of the foundations of what came before. District streets lie in the shadows of massive, khaki-colored walls of quarried stone brick capped with crenulations, atop of which modern gun and missile emplacements are perched. The city buildings themselves are made of stucco and red brick from the beginning of the industrial era. Culverts and sewer grates open into darkened, labyrinthine arcades of ancient hewn stone block fortifications; for every acre of surface structures, another two acres of still-inhabitabited ruin lies underground.