Tiomera Settlement in The Sea of Starlight | World Anvil


Traveling slowly across the waters of the Shimmering Depths, is the ever shifting and growing city of Tiomera. Eventhough the architecture and style of the city may not be all that impressive in itself, the floating city of Tiomera as a whole is a great feat of urban design, engineering and magic that is unlike any other in the world. The city only exists, persists and thrives through the cooperation and hard work of its citizens who all contribute to maintaining this city on the waves.

A Thousand Rafts

Tiomera consists of five districts known as 'Arks'. Each of the arks each built up of thousands of floating structures which the citizens commonly refer to as rafts. Rafts are made of all types of wood and material. Most of the material is salvaged from wrecks, but some is also bought from merchants who have grown familiar with the type of material the city is usually in need of. The rafts are interconnected and locked into each other in various ways. Some are simply connected with bridges and structures or tied together with rope. Some of these constructions can be disassembled or are slightly flexible to withstand the waves and motions of the water. Other parts of the city are held together by enchantments and other types of magic. With all these parts and connections Tiomera can be likened to a gigantic puzzle of sorts. Although in theory the layout of the rafts and perhaps even the arks themselves could be reconfigured endlessly, making changes in the structure has proven to take a lot of effort and calculation to be done correctly and safely to maintain the integrity of the city as a whole.


The citizens of Tiomera are a tough bunch. Surviving on the waves with no fresh water or food has historically been an important issue for any seafaring individual, but the Tiomerans have been able to create systems and methods to thrive in this environment. Farm rafts, seaweed fields and fish nurseries are the most important sources of sustenance for the city. Fresh water is a valuable commodity and is created through distillation systems that most citizens have created in their own home but is also created within the surge foundries. As the citizens grew more adventurous, they dived deeper and deeper into the sea, eventually reaching the depths where Gloomwrack grows with the use of Depth Bells. The discovery of this seaweed revolutionized the way the city functioned because of the many uses of the plant.


Tiomera travels seemingly to quite random locations in the Shimmering Depths ocean, but the city is governed and steered quite precisely by the Court of the Compass to avoid hazards and dangers in and above the waters. Through the use of many sails the city can go with the wind when they are favorable. The Surge Foundries provide short term propulsion to maneuver the city more precisely. The Court of the Compass is always in close contact with the citizens and researchers of the satellite city of Eauviron and the Anchormasters within the city to make sure the city stays the course and the anchors in the anchorhouses are lowered in the right place.


Each of the five arks have a distinct place and function within the city. The arks can be disconnected from each other but this is only done in rare cases. Extremely stormy weather, attacks by pirates and a single occurrence of an invasion of deep sea creatures have warranted the disconnection of the districts. There have also been a few times that because a lack of a better alternative, the city was broken up to allow it to maneuver past icebergs, cliffs and rocks.
1. House of the Greatwheel
2. Windcatcher Temple
3. Market of Bells
4. Prow Lighthouse
5. Stern Lighthouse
6. Port Lighthouse
7. Star Lighthouse
8. Bridge Lighthouse
9. Mera Harbor
10. Anchorhouse(s)
11. Bow Anchorhouse
12. Surge Foundry 1
13. Keel Lighthouse
14. Keel Market


The bow ark is the part of the city that usually points forward as it is moving. Although Tiomera can move into any direction, it is fastest when the bow ark is pointing forward. Because of this, the outer edges of the ark are heavily reinforced to protect it from any floating debris crashing into the city. The district ends in a single point that cleaves through the waves in a similar manner as the bow of a ship. This point is not much of an aerodynamic improvement to the city but it provides a clear sense of the direction the city is moving in.


Bridgark was the first ark of the city when it first separated from the mainland. The city is commanded and governed from the House of the Greatwheel, which doubles as an Anchorhouse. The bridge ark is the smallest ark of the city, but this also provides the benefit of the ease of moving the district entirely. Most commonly this is done when a new Wheelmaster is chosen and their preference of the location of the House of the Greatwheel is different from the previous wheelmaster.


The hull ark is the largest ark of Tiomera and is connected to all the other arks, because of this it features five anchorhouses to keep it steady and locked in place when the city is not on the move. The Hullark also features the Windcatcher Temple, the Market of Bells and the Mera Harbor. The ark is a bustling commercial and residential area where most of the trade with merchants takes place. Because the ark spans the entire width of the city, it features a lighthouse on both the port side and the starboard side.


Keelark is the subaquatic district of Tiomera. These days you can find residences in this district that are often inhabited by aquatic and amphibious humanoids. Originally this part of the city only provided floatation to stop the increasingly heavy city from sinking and connected parts of the city to each other, but over time it grew into a proper district of its own. Structures in the Keelark are quite large, this is mainly because construction underwater is complex and it is easier to build a single large structure instead of multiple smaller structures. Instead of roads, there are a few tunnels in the keelark, but some routes can only be traveled by aquatic species. Most of the structures and locations can be entered and exited at the top through the deck level of Tiomera. There are quite a few seaweed farms and fish nurseries in Keelark that provide the entire city with nourishment. The Keelark also features a lighthouse that provides a beacon to any denizens of the deep and its own market to make trade with aquatic species such as merfolk a bit easier.


Apart from residences and a few agricultural fields, the Sternark also provides propulsion to the city through the Surge Foundriesand features its own lighthouse and two separate Anchorhouses. Sternark is also the place where the Portbay and Starbay communities dock.

Portbay and Starbay

These communities are not considered to be a part of the city proper, it is more of a general area besides the Sternark. These areas are usually filled with individual and clustered rafts and boats that tag along with the city. They are loosely connected at the back of the city to the Sternark so that in case of an emergency the city can still depart without crashing into all these smaller residences and fields. A lot of the individuals living in these communities have turned their rafts into proper vegetable, seaweed or fish farms and make a good living providing the city with food. As they are more easily able to return to shores to stock up on equipment and material. Because of this they do not have to rely on when the Court of the Compass decides to return to land or hope for a merchant to find their way to the city.
Founding Date
Alternative Name(s)
Raft City
The Seafaring City
Related Ethnicities
Inhabitant Demonym
Location under
Ruling/Owning Rank
Owning Organization
Vehicles Present
Related Professions


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Jul 15, 2022 20:29 by Nicholas Hoar

It has canals XD

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