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Hello again, everyone! This time I'm actually posting in the right forum. Without further adieu, I intend to RP an Ishgardian. A lot of the other city states' lore and recent histories are found out in the early game. https://ffxiv-roleplayers.com/showthread.php?tid=18282&pid=280561 I found this link along with all the links Sounsyy posted at the bottom which I aim to read through, but none of them seemed to be geared to a brief overview of the recent history and current hardships facing Ishgard that every Ishgardian would be intimately familiar with. As such, I'm trying to get a somewhat compiled list of recent knowledge/hardships every Ishgardian would be experiencing or have recently experienced. I'm also hoping to better understand the standard Ishgardian military fighter (especially learning what the heck a Chirurgeon actually does). Old to New History They've been at war with dragonkind for 800 years. Only recently (HW Spoiler) Despite that, the Horde yet remains. Calamity Previously, Coerthas was a beautiful countryside with both green and mountains in equal amounts. Ever since the Calamity at the end of 1.0 (which was 5 years ago as of time of posting), however, much of Coerthas has become difficult to traverse (some of the regions before are no longer accessible). It seems to be covered under an eternal winter, under which many of the local denizens have suffered. I was not around for 1.0, so I am not entirely certain what happened in the Calamity to cause Coerthas to suddenly become a frozen hell. My guess would be it's due to ice-aspected aether becoming prominent after the fire-aspected primal Bahamut was dealt with, but that's speculation. Clarification would be appreciated if anyone knows what is actually happening to cause this! The Calamity bringing ice and snow brought a new list of problems to Ishgard's people and government, and resulted in mass casualties and the loss of entire garrisons (as indicated in the dungeon where we clear out a garrison of snowed in soldiers). Botanist Spoilers Below (ARR + Heavensward) Being as starvation is a great motivator, I would assume as per a related post I read they import a significant amount of it since much of their farmlands were demolished by the Calamity. Trade They seem to have an iron grip on the chocobo trade. I know other nations have chocobos, but is it confirmed whether or not they're imported from Ishgard? I'm namely trying to determine what Ishgard's primary exports would be aside from snow and faith. I would appreciate knowledge about the chocobo trade, as well as any other exports they handle. If Chocobos are their only export and other nations already have them in large enough quantities, I would imagine getting what they need by trade would be difficult. Government And Eorzean Alliance (Spoiler heavy for Heavensward, read at your own risk!) Outsiders Given all of the recent events, are outsiders now permitted within Ishgard without the approval of a Great House? Military Their modernized military consists of knights (powerful religious melee combatants, seemingly less cavalry based than their real life counterpart), chirurgeons, and machinists. Knighthood, however, requires being knighted after undergoing training as a squire which seems to cover a large variety of topics from learning how to fight, to learning how to take care of one's own food-based needs in the field, to maintaining armor/weapons, and chivalric code. Chirurgeons are their healers and in-game use the Conjurer weapon and class, though canonically they're not the same at all. I've heard mixed reviews as to whether they're simple non-magical doctors, or whether they're simplistic holy casters. If anyone has definitive lore on this (non-magic vs. magic healing, as well as if it is magical what school it is [elemental, holy, something else, how does it function?]) I would appreciate it! Machinists are their specialists who are used in the field behind Knights. These are the most recent addition to the Ishgardian lines, only arriving in 3.0 (2-3 years ago canonically, right?). I have another entire post on these elsewhere, so I think I'm good on Machinists lore for now (thanks Sounsyy & Valence!). Based on this, I should ask - are all of their front line soldiers knights/squires, or do they incorporate non-knight front line soldiers into their midst? Summary (As I Understand It) In short, they are dealing with a recent political upheaval, changes to their church's beliefs (which in a theocracy would be massive - it would be similar to the separation of Martin Luther from the Catholic church during the Reformation IRL), starvation, lack of building materials, a top-heavy economy (nobles appear to be fairly wealthy, the peasant populace on the other hand requires handouts to even get everyone blankets and food), needing trade to get basic needs (which isn't necessarily a hardship, but if trade were ever disrupted it would have drastic effects on their way of life so it makes them vulnerable), Even now, their military system of knights and squires is financed heavily by the four Great houses who control trade and the greater part of the economy, which ensures stability but also stagnancy in social status in spite of personal successes. Please, post comments, questions, ideas, and thoughts! I'm very interested in other people's opinions and ideas