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Population: 10,000
Gate To: Mechanus
Primary Faction: Fraternity of Order

The most perfect and ordered burg in the Outlands, Automata seems more like a machine than a living place. Inside its rectangular walls, the city's laid out as clean as a cartographer's study.

The town's a perfect grid; it's take a leatherhead to get lost here. The buildings look like they were stamped by the same hand, and places are made different only where needed (for example, a stable has larger entrances than a tavern). Buildings rise up one to four stories, but each story's always 12 feet tall and carved out of the same, gray-red stone. Bits of color in a sign or awning liven the place up a bit, but that's all got to be cleared by the Council of Order.

All businesses of a like type set up on the same block. A body can't rut a tavern in the lodging block, but he can open that same tavern across the street in an entertainment block. 'Course, this means there's a half-dozen smithies within a hammer's throw of each other, but a sod in a mansion might have a long walk to the nearest greengrocer.

The Gate

In the middle of the town sits the Gate to Mechanus, in a block all by itself. The gate's a great disk on its side, a turning, toothed gear. Travellers to Mechanus hop up on the disk and disappear. Where they come out depends on the time of day, the position of the disk, and probably a lot of other arcane factors. The government's got a whole building of accountants, calculators, and computers (the old-fashioned, humanoid type) who work at figuring out where the gate'll drop a body at any particular time.

The gate's surrounded by government buildings, with a wide exit spireward. This exit, Modron Way, is for the modrons who regularly spill out of the gate and start their long march around the Outlands. The march is called the Procession, or the Modron Walkabout, but only Primus, the lord of the modrons, knows the true dark of it.

The Populace

Most of the natives are either petitioners of law or folks (both planars and primes) who hope to profit from them. There are a lot of humans, elves, and other mortal races, but few halflings, hin, gnomes, or kender. Once in a while a body'll run across a baatezu or archon in town on business for its lord. And there's always modrons - working, exploring, and marching off here and there for their own reasons.

The petitioners in the town are easy to mark. They stick to a common uniform (currently, a red-gray robe of ankle length, bound with a white sash). "One dress, one mind," they like to say, figuring it'll help them make Automata so lawful that it'll slide right into Mechanus. Other planars and some primes tend to garb themselves in flashier colors.

Smart cutters can probably guess which faction's the strongest in town: the Fraternity of Order (or, in common chant, the Guvners). These bashers've got the bureaucracy of Automata in a stranglehold; they fill all the low- and mid-level posts. Berks who play games with the laws of the town get marked by the Guvners, and they've been playing games with the laws a lot longer.


Automata . Fortitude . Excelsior . Tradegate . Ecstasy . Faunel . Sylvania . Glorium . Xaos
Bedlam . Plague-Mort . Curst . Hopeless . Torch . Ribcage . Rigus