Portal Networks Technology / Science in The Cradle of Worlds | World Anvil

Portal Networks

Portal networks are a powerful method of travel with in the cradle of worlds. A development beyond static portals that only connect two locations that allowed much greater access to travel and comerce.  



Directed Networks

Directed networks were the first kind of portal network. Basically like individual portals but with the ability to move from one portal to the next in a sequential fashion. These describe the best known elvish Starlit Path and Draconic Waze. It can be visualized as a web of individual nodes representing locations that have multiple portals. The downside to these networks is their cost and difficulty of use. The difficulty of use is a perk as far as the dragons are concerned, but most groups have abandoned these networks for more modern architectures.  

Addressable (Standard) Networks

The most common found networks are the addressable kind. They have multiple forms and are typically built for specific purposes. They did standardize the sizes of the Uln platforms to allow for interoperability between networks. All platforms of a smaller size can transport to a platform of a larger size with no concerns, in the case of going from a larger platform to a smaller only smaller groups of payloads can be transported. Some platforms have multiple keys installed in them and can connect to multiple networks. This flexible structure allows for international, national, and city networks to all operate on different address methods and lower the need for extremely long addresses. It also allows for additional security measures depending on the various needs.  

Technical Requirements and Limitations

Keyed systems require keys to be made first and are limited in size to the number of keys created initially. This is because a security imprint is made as a fractal aetheric hologram on the crystalline structure of a large crystal. The large crystal is then subdivided into the individual keys each containing the initial fractal pattern. Large networks then require huge crystalline rocks to generate the number of expected keys with extra as needed. This provides significant security for networks, but comes at a cost of knowing your expected size when going into building a network.   Some networks opt for an anchored system. Anchored systems are helpful in that they can be addressed without an intact Uln platform, such as by teleportation spells. Anchored systems can also implement rotating password systems remotely and activate and perform some maintenance on the remote systems. However it means that the systems do not function without the anchor system being active, and controlling the anchor allows total control over the network.    

Example Networks


Starlit Path

  • Power: self sustaining ley lines
  • Type: directed chain
  • Physical: differs by link
  • Use: by the elves linking their various towns, locations etc

Waze of the Dragons

  • Power: self sustaining by unknown source
  • Type: directed chain
  • Physical: differs by link, or no physical manifestation demarcating the location
  • Use: by the dragons

Far Reach Network

  • Power: Mystic Engine powered
  • Type: standard anchored radial coordinate system
  • Physical: using large Uln platforms
  • Key: black quartz (installed)
  • Addresses: Angle, Angle, Distance, typically one address per hundreds of miles.
  • Use: inter-realm trade and travel
  • Security: none, may be accessed without a key in some cases

Kuvin Transport System

  • Power: Mystic Engine powered
  • Type: standard anchored radial coordinate system
  • Physical: using medium Uln platforms
  • Key: orange serpentine (installed)
  • Addresses: explicitly defined per location as installed
  • Use: Business inventory and product transportation
  • Security: none

Gorel Network

  • Power: Mystic Engine powered
  • Type: standard anchored surface referenced
  • Physical: using large Uln platforms
  • Key: jade (installed)
  • Addresses: latitude, longitude, altitude. Typically one address per mile.
  • Use: intra-realm trade and travel

New Minam Network

  • Power: Mystic Engine powered
  • Type: standard anchored
  • Physical: using small Uln platforms
  • Key: Amber (portable key)
  • Addresses: x,y,z coordinates from 0 location, typically one address per mile. With special references for mobile locations.
  • Use: governmental and military transport
  • Securty: passcodes required as well as key to activate

Void Network

  • Alternate Names: Yggdrasil, The Great River
  • Power: Mystic Engine powered
  • Type: abstract multi-dimensional portal network, non-anchored
  • Physical: using large Uln platforms
  • Key: pearlescent (portable or installed)
  • Addresses: depth, permeability, permittivity, reference point
  • Use: accessing unusual planes and dimensions
  • Security: Is dependent on destination endpoint requirements
Parent Technologies
Access & Availability
Different networks have different availability. Some require a physical key to be had by the user, or a special poem or spell. Many of the more accessible networks that used Mystic Engines were disabled in Gorel during the calamity. Others were shut down intentionally by the quarantine mandate from the Church of the Earthstar .
Modern portal networks rely on mystic engines with the compact tealtcra crystals, and ulumin resin platforms. The construction of these requires a significant infrastructure and supply chain.
It is believed that the first portal networks were established by Dragons and Elves in the early 3000's

Cover image: by Markus Dehning (vertixico)


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