Saturday, December 23, 2023

Hodgepocalypse Africa - Part 10 - Central Africa - The Equatorial Abyss


  


The history of the Equatorial Abyss is a tapestry woven with threads of ancient mysticism, technological wonders, and the resilience of humanity in the face of cosmic upheaval. As survivors navigate this underground labyrinth, they uncover the secrets of the past, confront mutated horrors, and seek to either restore balance or exploit the newfound powers lurking in the depths.

History

In the distant past, long before the Hodgepocalypse, ancient African civilizations thrived, harnessing powerful mystical energies and advanced technologies. Legends spoke of a sacred nexus hidden beneath the Earth, a convergence of ley lines and spiritual forces. This nexus was believed to be a source of balance, linking the earthly realm with the energies of the cosmos.

As the Hodgepocalypse unfolded, triggered by a cataclysmic event of cosmic proportions, the world was thrown into chaos. The very fabric of reality was torn asunder, and the once-stable connections between the mundane and the mystical were disrupted. The sacred nexus beneath the Earth, intended to be a source of harmony, became a focal point for the chaotic energies unleashed.

The aftermath of the Hodgepocalypse saw the emergence of mutated landscapes, twisted by the unpredictable fusion of magic and science. The ancient civilizations were obliterated, leaving behind remnants of their once-mighty structures and technologies. However, deep underground, the sacred nexus persisted, now warped and changed by the Hodgepocalypse.

In the centuries that followed, survivors sought refuge underground, discovering the existence of the altered nexus. They realized that the mystical energies emanating from the nexus were both a source of power and peril. Those who delved into its depths uncovered strange phenomena, mutated creatures, and remnants of the lost technologies of the past.

The survivors began to establish settlements around the nexus, creating the first connections between the various mines. The tunnels, initially formed out of necessity for shelter, evolved into a complex network as different groups sought to exploit the resources and mysteries hidden beneath the Earth's surface.

Over time, the Equatorial Abyss became the epicenter of a new world order. Factions rose and fell, each vying for control over the nexus and the valuable resources connected to it. The tunnels and pathways became the lifeblood of the post-apocalyptic societies, shaping trade, alliances, and conflicts.

The Geology of the Depths

The Equatorial Abyss is a series of connected caves and mines.  While they may change over time, the simple fact that these are conduits to a whole new world. 

The mainstay of its physical locations are in south and central Africa as this is where the lion’s share of the mining occurred and a lot of mining holes appear to be have been made artificially, even when the scale appears to be absolutely ludicrous that it all could have been created and interconnected them.

Cratons 

These solid blocks of rock are often considered the main support structures of the Equatorial Abyss.  The two biggest focal points of this are the Congo Craton and the Kaapvaal Craton in Southern Africa, but there are other ones that are strewn across Africa.  These are dominated by crystalline and metamorphic material. 

Hallowed Conduits

Dimensional Portals to the Hallowed world are more likely to be found underground and are common in areas of intense geographic activity.

Volcanic Activity.

Before the Hodgepocalypse, it was the home of the world’s most active volcanos.  The Hodgepocalypse has made them more active and even now team with life adapted to live in such hostile environments.  This also includes magma rivers that bubble up from the depths which can remake a location in an instant and ravage the unwary.  This is mainly on the eastern continent which boxes in the equatorial Abyss.

Creatures of the Equatorial Abyss

This is mainly to have a list of common wildlife that can be found throughout the Equatorial Abyss:

Bats: Many species of bats roost in caves and mines, seeking shelter in the dark and secluded spaces.

Cave Crickets: These insects are adapted to dark environments and can be found in various cave systems, including mines.

Cave Spiders: Some spider species are adapted to low-light conditions and can be found in caves and mines.

Blind Cave Fish: In underground water systems within mines, blind cave fish have adapted to living in complete darkness.

Cave Salamanders: Some species of salamanders inhabit the damp, dark conditions of caves and mines.

Troglofauna: This term refers to various small invertebrates that have adapted to live in subterranean environments, including caves and mines.

Rats and Mice: Rodents may find their way into mines seeking shelter and food.

Termites: Some termite species construct their nests in subterranean environments, including mines.

Snakes: Certain snake species may venture into mines, especially if they provide suitable hiding spots or prey.

Scorpions: In arid regions, scorpions might be found in mines, particularly if there are suitable microhabitats for them.

Locations of Notes

Bakwanga Diamond Enclave:



Along the edge of the Cameroon and the Central African Republic are a massive location of diamonds.  The Bakwanga Diamond Enclave are a major source of industrial diamonds, used for cutting and grinding tools. These diamonds are essential for crafting high-quality equipment, and factions in control of this resource dominate manufacturing and infrastructure development.  However, this is a location where the Blood Diamond Elementals wander seeking to vent their primal fury on those invaders.

Bushveld Igneous Complex





This location in the former South Africa is one of the most productive platinum production in the world.  The platinum veins intertwine with the magical energies of the Equatorial Abyss, creating veins of abyssal platinum. Miners who extract this rare material often find themselves attuned to the mystical forces, gaining insights into the magical properties of the region.

Cango Caves

                                     


This complex of Luminous limestone formations with calming properties. Pools of liquid limestone with transformative effects.  Liquid limestone possesses unique properties, allowing those who submerge themselves to temporarily gain insights into the language of magical energies, enhancing their ability to comprehend and manipulate spells.  It is one of the key locations that is believed to be an entrance to the Hallowed Earth, with the effect being that this is  potential invasion point for Terrorsaurs.

Congo Crystal Mines:



Arguably one of the most magical areas, The Congo Crystal Mines are known for extracting rare crystals with unique properties. These crystals could have energy-storing capabilities or mystical qualities. The crystals might be highly sought after for technological advancements, power sources, or even mystical rituals.   A Band of Minotaurs have setup a major gig area as the crystals both enhance psychic energy and they make a great set for their “vids.”

Copperbelt Copper Mines:



The Copperbelt Copper Mines are along the edge of the former countries of Democratic Republic of the Congo and Zambia and has made copper a common material across the continent.  It is critical to produce electrical components and wiring. Control over these mines is vital for maintaining and repairing technology, making it a key resource for any faction aiming to sustain or advance their technological capabilities.   This is homestead Dwarf Territory and they have used their knowledge to make a healthy trade.

Gold Reef City



Gold Reef City becames the Golden Nexus, a labyrinthine network of tunnels where veins of enchanted gold flow. The gold is sought after not for its material value, but for its ability to enhance the potency of magical artifacts crafted within its depths.  A human mutant community  thrives in its depths with the back story being that they were a group of trapped miners that managed to thrive during the Hodgepocalypse in its depths.

Hollowed Tree Labyrinth



A Massive Baobab Tree tree has hollowed out over the centuries, forming a labyrinthine network of tunnels filled with bioluminescent fungi and traps. It's rumored to hide a lost tribe's treasure.  This is Elf territory whom live as pastrolists whom travel the tree while rearing Cave-Dwelling Insects.s

Ituri Gemstone Quarries:



Along the northern edge of the former Democratic Republic of the Congo, The Ituri Gemstone Quarries are renowned for producing precious gemstones. These gemstones are not only valuable for trade but might also have mystical properties or cultural significance. Possession of these gemstones could symbolize wealth and power.  The Mining Lord has setup an outpost and is trying to develop a stranglehold on the commodity.

Kibara Belt



This is series of belts of quartz vein deposits with Tin, Tungston, Niobium, Tantalum, Lithium, Berylium and Gold and is considered a hot spot for mining.  The Quartz dog packs reign over this location and need to be appeased to allow for plundering of its wealth.  Still the material is simply too lucrative to not send excursions.

Kivu Gas Reserves:



Underneath Lake Kivu is one of the largest deposits of Natural gas on the planet and it appears to be constantly renewing itself. The Kivu Gas Reserves are crucial for providing a source of fuel in the post-apocalyptic world. Gas extracted from these mines could be used for energy, heating, and even as a valuable trading commodity. Control over these reserves could mean dominance in the region.  The gas is nasty, but it also has led to an ecosystem that has a basis of floating fish.  It also teams with spirits and Naptha Nereids that cause complications.

Manono Lithium Mines:



Significance: The Manono Lithium Mines extract lithium, a crucial component for energy storage and advanced technologies. The lithium batteries produced here are highly sought after, powering everything from vehicles to communication devices. Control over these mines ensures technological supremacy.  The energy that is saved here makes radio equipment difficult to use due to interference. A Trollitariot clan has active control of this site and have used their stubbornness and expertise to use lithium for their own productively and defenses.

Mount Nyiragongo Complex



The Mount Nyiragongo Complex stands as a natural gateway to the mysterious depths of the Equatorial Abyss. Its active volcanoes, Nyiragongo and Nyamuragira, serve as conduits that channel the volatile energy of the Hodgepocalypse into the earth.  A magical vortex hovers above the volcanic craters, swirling with energy. The vortex is a focal point for magical occurrences, causing unpredictable surges in mystical activity throughout the Equatorial Abyss.  Very little sentient species live here, but it is sought out as it is a Hallowed Earth conduit to the elemental fire planet of Mars.

Oubangui Uranium Deposits:



This area is particularly dangerous as it is radioactive, The Oubangui Uranium Deposits are a key source of nuclear fuel. In the post-apocalyptic world, controlling these deposits could give a faction the potential to harness nuclear power or construct powerful weapons, making it a strategic and dangerous location.  The Weavespiders seem to habitate here and retreat when they annoy the surface too much.  It also is covered in fossilized Calendula plants that seem to grow over time.

Thabazimbi Iron Ore Mine



Thabazimbi Iron Ore Mine becomes the Thunderforge, a cavern where iron ore resonates with the elemental power of thunder. Weapons forged here can call forth lightning and thunderstorms.  This is a location where abandoned robotic mining equipment have creative a collective as they continue to harvest and don’t look kindly to claim jumpers.

Vredefort Dome



The Vredefort Dome transforms into the Celestial Caldera, an ancient crater filled with fragments of a celestial meteor. The metals within the meteor grant unparalleled magical properties to those who can harness their essence.  The Malarkoids, suburbanite aliens that might be mutants, have developed a settlement along the crater as part of their neighborhood.

Dangers of Note

1.      Mutated Flora and Fauna:

The Hodgepocalypse has twisted the once-familiar plants and animals into grotesque and dangerous forms. Mutated vines, carnivorous plants, and predatory creatures roam the tunnels.

2.      Energetic Anomalies:

Residual energies from the altered nexus create pockets of unstable magic. These anomalies can cause unpredictable phenomena, from reality-warping distortions to sudden surges of mystical energy.

3.      Toxic Gases:

Mining activities and the Hodgepocalypse might have released toxic gases into the tunnels. Certain areas are filled with noxious fumes that can be lethal to the unprepared.

     4.    Collapsing Tunnels:

The structural integrity of the tunnels has been compromised over time. Sections may collapse, leading to deadly cave-ins. Survivors must navigate carefully to avoid unstable areas.

5.      Ancient Traps:

The pre-apocalyptic civilization may have left behind automated defense systems or traps to protect the secrets of the nexus. Triggering these traps could lead to perilous situations.

6.      Psychic Resonance:

The nexus's altered state has left a psychic residue in the tunnels. Some survivors may experience haunting visions, psychological disturbances, or even telepathic communication with other beings.

Myths of the Equatorial Abyss

The Whispering Tunnels:

Myth: Miners claim to hear mysterious whispers in the deepest tunnels, said to be the voices of spirits warning of impending danger or revealing hidden treasures.

The Phantom Miner:

Myth: A spectral figure of a miner, cursed to eternally wander the abandoned shafts, seeking something lost in life and forever eluding discovery.

The Living Veins:

Myth: Some believe the veins of precious minerals in the mines are alive, pulsating with an energy that can either bless or curse those who encounter it.

The Luminous Guardian:

Myth: Miners tell tales of a guardian spirit made of pure light, appearing only to those deemed worthy and guiding them to untold treasures.

The Stone Singers:

Myth: Legends speak of stones deep within the mines that emit a haunting melody. Miners claim that those who hear it risk falling under a mystical spell.

The Forgotten City:

Myth: Rumors circulate about an ancient city hidden beneath the mines, where a civilization thrived before the Hodgepocalypse. Brave adventurers seek to uncover its secrets.

The Phantom Cartographer:

Myth: Whispers tell of a mysterious figure mapping the ever-changing labyrinthine tunnels, leaving cryptic symbols that only the chosen ones can decipher.

The Cursed Gem:

Myth: A tale of a single cursed gemstone that, when touched, bestows immense power but at a grave cost, leading to the downfall of many who seek it.

The Mirror of Shadows:

Myth: Miners speak of a magical mirror hidden in the mines, capable of showing glimpses of both the past and the future, but at the risk of madness.

The Echoing Laughter:

Myth: Some claim to hear the distant laughter of mischievous spirits deep within the mines, said to guide lost souls or lead them astray.













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