by Max Barry

Latest Forum Topics

Advertisement

The Loquacious Lipograms of
Left-wing Utopia

Overview Factbook Dispatches Policies People Government Economy Rank Trend Cards

1

No ordinary venue

Zwangzug is a predominantly cold, mountainous country. The Alai Mountains formed the country's southern border (with Unkerlantum/Travda), while the Rackham Range runs north-south through west-central Zwangzug. They also feature the country's highest peak, Mount Pittan (16,384 feet). Most of the non-mountain climate is humid continental, while a small temperate rainforest is located in the country's extreme southwest.

At one point or another Zwangzug bordered Unkerlantum (later Travda) to the south, Modre to the east (across the Pinual River, or "the pin," that forked into the "relative pin" in southern Zwangzug, in contrast to the "absolute pin"), and Ferahgotopia to the west. Not so much anymore.

Zwangzug is devolved into sixty districts, and contains many cities.

Really, many many cities. Here is an Linkenormous map of our cities!


The Ziggurat is a structure in Zwischen, the capital of Zwangzug. Constructed from leveled buildings after the catastrophic riots of the mid-sixties, the building once served as the seat of government. With the country's bureaucracy burgeoning, it is less parliamentary chamber and more symbolic location, representing progress even in dark times. This deep significance to the country's people and meaningful representation on the global level earned it a place on the World Heritage Sites & Treasures List.

The building has become so "notable", in fact, that it was parodied in a "Mammoth Compendium of World Cup Lies" by being described as "constructed entirely out of haddock heads". The first Golden Haddock award, given to Zwangzug by the Holy Empire, hangs on display in the first level.

All the levels are squares: each is smaller than the one below it. Levels three through six are rarely used nowadays, but some offices and conference rooms remain in use.
First: set up almost like a museum for visitors to learn about the country and its politics.
Second: offices for members of the parliament, surrounding their antiquated discussion chambers.
Third: Department of Education
Fourth: Department of the Environment
Fifth: Department of Social Welfare
Sixth: Miscellaneous Concerns (includes Healthcare, Social Equality, Public Transportation, Religion and Spirituality, Commerce, and various bureaucracies with provocative acronyms)
Seventh: unoccupied, often referred to as the Department of the Military. (Zwangzug utterly lacks one.) Officials in poor standing are often said to be on the "elevator to level seven".
Eighth: the ceiling and walls are transparent, allowing visitors to look out over the city.


Mean Fahrenheit temperatures for various cities:

City

Jan.

Feb.

Mar.

Apr.

May

June

July

Aug.

Sep.

Oct.

Nov.

Dec.

Sharag

36

38

42

47

51

53

55

58

56

48

43

37

Weegham

8

16

28

44

56

64

70

67

57

45

28

14

Bassabook

28

30

40

48

58

68

74

72

62

52

40

27

Outrive

26

32

40

49

52

64

67

65

60

49

40

30


Non-contiguous Zwangzug



A map of the Zebra Isles

The vast majority of Zwangzug's land and population consists of part of the Starways Congress continent. However, the country includes multiple archipelagos at varying distances from the mainland. Residents of non-contiguous Zwangzug are politically the equals of their mainland counterparts; the islands have no special governmental status but are part of various parliamentary districts. With the Zebra Isles' sovereignty in dispute, however, this may change in the near future.

Spread throughout the waters off the coast of Zwangzug, the Picksall Islands had little contact with the mainland until a cartographic spree gripped much of the latter. As their awareness of neighboring cities grew, so too did their knowledge of the islands beyond. Unfortunately, some of the first visitors from the mainland were horrified by the vaguely-polytheistic practices they found on many of the Picksalls. (While variations abounded throughout the many islands, the most common belief system involved the henotheistic worship of the sun, moon, or stars depending on gender or individual conversion.) As the cartographers' work allowed detailing of more and more small islands, the problems multiplied. Unusually for Zwangzug, and unprecedented for the country on its scale, a wave of Christian missionary activity was soon to follow in the hopes of "saving" the islanders. This was partially successful, as Christianity is now the islands' most common religion, but in other cases backfired when those who had lived on the Picksalls for some time eventually converted.*

The Zebra Isles are located much farther from the mainland, near Wezeltonia. They were named in an outpouring of homesickness from their original settlers, most of who had come from Zwangzug's mountain ranges through Lang. (The Isles are politically included in the district of Langport, at least for now.) More recently, however, the Wezeltonian army took control of the islands. Though the eventual demilitarization was seen as an encouraging sign, diplomatic talks meant to determine the Isles' long-term future have broken down.
The Isles are:
1. Ghos (uninhabited)
2. Iavbrat (no permanent residents, though it does contain one scientific base with rotating occupants)
3. Lonope
4. Quesy, where zebras have in fact thrived as an invasive species.
5. Nurdsont
6. Tisawa, first settled by ethnic Wezeltonians fed up with their government's policies. It eagerly embraced membership as part of Zwangzug and today tends to be particularly supportive of the Isles' inclusion within the larger state.
7. Vergy, the largest and most populous. It contains the archipelago's largest city, Jagoul.

Top ten mountains of the Rackham Range:

Name

Height (feet)

First summit

By:

Pittan

16384

1864

Bernard Eckes, Chelsea Wadsworth

Navude

15879

1831

Eldon Keiss, Percival Jurell, Vivian Hampner

Hakedis

15467

1771

Jonas Gronchi, Obed Profeta, Alasdair Hugher, Schi Strobel, Charles Tyrem

Corrent

15230

1877

Wesley Harris, Maxwell Deering, Roderick Salvessmay

Higarf

14931

1869

Murray Sato, Sophus Fliss

Emoa

14720

1871

Wesley Harris, Benjamin Fliss

Ginwaugh

14531

1804

Angela Wiegand, Tanya Mihaylova, Marilyn Schoenberg, Kwan Tai

Sherve

14276

1874

Elena Kinewski, Thaddeus Laum, Edmund Chaner, Jemima Lahti

Griess

13847

1870

Jasper Amsel, Tamir Horowitz, Theodosia Scroy

Adall

13679

1866

Rurik Conan, Daniel Pysmore


InterCity monorail trains connect the country's largest cities. InterCity system is completely run by the statewide government, unlike the Regional Express trains (where statewide and district governments work together) and those operated solely by the districts.

InterCity trains are the fastest, and tend to cover the longest distances, in the public system. InterCity Express trains are faster than regular InterCity trains, and used for more important routes.

There are 33 InterCity "lines" (pairs of cities joined by IC trains), and 23 InterCity Express Lines. Some trains, however, visit cities joined by consecutive lines to form "connecting lines". There are five such in the IC system (known as IC A through IC E, confusingly in the last case) and two among ICE trains, ICE* and ICE**.
InterCity Express Lines

Number

Relative Length

1*

Zwischen

Keppal City

375

2*

Keppal City

FTC

240

3*

FTC

Spenson

313

4*

Spenson

Inver

115

5

Zwischen

Arlington

130

6

Zwischen

Canbix

232

7

Zwischen

Nuel

193

8

Zwischen

Bassabook

243

9**

Nuel

Canbix

236

10**

Canbix

Keppal City

163

11**

Nuel

Bassabook

155

12

Nuel

Kerlagrad

96

13

Kerlagrad

Bassabook

198

14**

Keppal City

102d

198

15

FTC

102d

174

16

102d

Arlington

562

17

Keppal City

Arlington

431

18

Spenson

Belpub

170

19

Belpub

Inver

165

20

FTC

Frischberg

164

21

Zwischen

Logrove

259

22

Nuel

Logrove

268

23

Bassabook

Logrove

142

*

Zwischen

Inver

1042

**

Bassabook

102d

756


InterCity Lines

Number

Relative Length

1

Zwischen

Danhy

120

2 (A)

Arlington

Noh Weir

297

3 (A)

Noh Weir

Cham

152

4 (B)

FTC

Marsey

107

5 (B)

Marsey

Outrive

104

6 (B)

Outrive

Belpub

148

7

FTC

Jingo

88

8

Jingo

Keppal City

158

9

Keppal City

Kindtown

98

10

Kindtown

Canbix

105

11

Kindtown

Frischberg

180

12

Spenson

Hope City

238

13

Spenson

Sharag

227

14 (C)

Arlington

Kedzy

111

15 (C)

Kedzy

Trink

124

16 (C)

Trink

Logrove

88

17

Cham

Ueberg

64

18

102d

Cham

132

19

102d

Shorn

146

20

Frischberg

Hope City

217

21

Mockba

Hapra

507

22

Mockba

Sharag

275

23

Hope City

Sharag

207

24

Hope City

Mockba

183

25

Frischberg

Mockba

160

26

Hope City

Marsey

159

27

Marsey

Jingo

139

28 (D)

Canbix

Hapra

202

29 (D)

Kerlagrad

Hapra

81

30

Kerlagrad

Craton

102

31

Nuel

Hapra

109

32 (E)

102d

Outrive

195

33 (E)

Spenson

Outrive

208

A

Arlington

Cham

449

B

FTC

Belpub

360

C

Arlington

Logrove

323

D

Canbix

Kerlagrad

284

E

102d

Spenson

402

Destination

Station(s)

102d

Union Sta10 (ICE15-16, IC18-19)

102d

Intersec10 Sta10 (ICE14, IC32)

Arlington

Union Station (ICE5, 16, IC2, 14)

Arlington

Wilson Station (ICE17)

Bassabook

Logan Junction (ICE8, 11, 23)

Bassabook

Edmon Station (ICE13)

Belpub

Bolt Terminal (ICE18-19, IC6)

Canbix

Ral Terminal (ICE6, 9-10, IC28)

Canbix

Urania Sta10 (IC10)

Cham

Cham Hauptbahnhof (IC3, 17-18)

Craton

Monorail Terminal (IC30)

Danhy

Monorail Initial (IC1)

Frischberg

Union Station (ICE20, IC11, 20, 25)

FTC

Central Station (ICE2-3, 20, IC4)

FTC

LocoFocus (ICE15, IC7)

Hapra

IC Stand (IC28, 31)

Hapra

Hapra Nadrazy (IC21, 29)

Hope City

Robin Station (IC20, 26)

Hope City

Dale Depot (IC 12, 23-24)

Inver

Oniorin Junction (ICE 4, 19)

Jingo

Wuchez Central (ICE 7-8, 27)

Kedzy

Grand Station (IC 14-15)

Keppal City

Transit Exchange (ICE1-2, 10, 14, 17)

Keppal City

Keppal Urban Station (IC 8-9)

Kerlagrad

Davis Junction (ICE12-13, IC29)

Kerlagrad

Ashland Station (IC30)

Kindtown

Downtown Transit Station (IC9-11)

Logrove

West Gare (ICE21-23, IC16)

Marsey

Jibuix Junction (IC4-5, 26-27)

Mockba

Mohope Station (IC21-22, 24-25)

Noh Weir

the train station (IC2-3)

Nuel

Midtown Crossing (ICE7-11)

Nuel

Union Station (ICE9, 12, 22, IC31)

Outrive

Bever Pass Station (IC5-6, 32-33)

Sharag

East Monorail Station (IC22-23)

Sharag

Chettiar Station (IC13)

Shorn

Sprinter Station (IC19)

Spenson

Spenson Railport (ICE3-4, 18, IC12-13, 33)

Trink

Trink Hauptbahnhof (IC15-16)

Ueberg

Zug Connection (IC17)

Zwischen

Republican Station (ICE1, 6-8, 21)

Zwischen

Billings Station (ICE5, IC1)

Disclaimer: the relative distances should be correct relative to each other, but the actual distances between these cities is uncertain. Zwangzugian geography is not incredibly precise. The length in miles might well be 1.84 times the values displayed. Or, it might not be. Also as long as we're disclaiming, please, please stay off IC A.

The train lines. Bold=ICE, plain black=IC, red=ICE*, blue=ICE**, green=IC A, yellow=IC B, purple=IC C, pink= IC D, brown=IC E.

*...their maps to GIF rather than JPEG.

Report