This week’s Player Owned Town spotlight has me, ‘Berek’ as I go by in the community, travelling by boat to visit the popular town of Port Phoenix on the Isle of Elysium. I received a direct invitation from Count Kazyn Phoenixfyre, who I met while admittedly getting a bit lost exploring the nearby Elysian Plains.
I arrived late in the evening on the docks and was immediately taken by the calm, quiet beauty of the townscape. With little energy for the evening, we made are way to the Once and Future Inn for a room for myself and a hot meal. Kazyn helped me get checked in and then departed until we planned to meet after I got some needed rest.
The next morning I walked out of the inn to stand in front of an opulent building known as the “Capitol Building”. As it turns out, the building is not just the center of activity in this town – or even for a single guild – but instead a central meeting place for the entire alliance known as the “Republic Alliance”. Paintings, flags and statues from many cultures were scattered about, each representing the different cities, guilds, and groups within the alliance.
It was then that I discovered I had arrived during a time of grand celebration. Kazyn walked up and met me in the crowd as we all emptied out the rear of the building. We were treated to drinks and food as I got the opportunity to mingle with the many alliance representatives.
They were celebrating what would be the alliance’s third anniversary. The Phoenixfyre family and alliance members were intent on giving me the royal tour.
Our tour began right there within the nearby garden as dark clouds settled overhead. This was a magnificent garden split into two halves representing the duality of the universe. Life and Death, Order and Chaos, Yin and Yang were both represented.
The leaders of all of the alliance guilds present knelt before a grand memorial. I was told that this memorial represented avatars that they had known and loved who had passed recently. I learned that with each avatar that passed on the other side of the rift, that a new memorial is added to honor their memory within New Britannia.
A grand stage up front providing a central place for the town’s entertainment and gathering events.
After we departed the gathering of leaders an hour later, Kazyn and a group of followers walked with us along the shore to the Grand Boardwalk. Any ship entering town is greeted by the three statues of the Titans looking upon them, and new visitors are greeted by Sequanna, Titan of Love. Kazyn explained to me that Love, in fact, was a central theme behind the founding of the town.
I took in the beauty of the town as Kazyn talked about its rich history as a small naval fortress originally known as Sparrow Bay. It was through much conflict that the town was burned down several times and rebuilt from scratch – eventually coming to earn its name.
As we began discussing the topic of commerce and trade, we came upon Main Street which was populated with all manner of shops and vendors. Many of the followers that were with us seemed to disappear within the shops instead of continuing on our tour…
We then walked to an enormous Gustball field with a small hut and bar nearby. The field, known as Firehawk Field, was home to the local Gustball team: “Port Phoenix Firehawks”. The bar was built as a place to gather and have drinks while watching the game. Its name, Wody’s, was derived from a long standing history of Wody’s bars in the community. As long as Port Phoenix has been around, there has been a Wody’s in it somewhere.
We then turned back past the bell tower to visit another famous locale – the Salty Dog Cafe, which thankfully didn’t actually have any salty dogs, but did have some excellent pretzel bread rolls.
Much like Wody’s, the cafe had been a local tradition for many years. It was one of the first of its kind to offer both local dine-in food and delivery (no fees attached) for the weary traveler.
Next up was the Port Phoenix government building. This was an office to Damien Ragnarok and Bodhbh Dearg – the town’s foreman and post master general. But underneath the building was one of the largest vaults I had ever seen! There was a collection of over 200 separate lock boxes, which together held all of the town’s reserve supplies, as well as acting as a central bank of sorts.
As we walked away from the town in order to get a better view, I was shown the house of a reclusive Samurai warrior sworn to protect the area. The house stood prominently at the top of a tree covered hill. While we didn’t get a chance to meet this “Andreas Whitefire”, I was told he was quite well known and respected among the areas other visitors, when they happened to encounter him.
While returning to the main part of the town from our walk, we crossed the historic “Kings Crossing” bridge. The bridge was said to be constructed with pieces of older walkways which once stood in the same spot – each one having been taken by the swamp in years past.
We closed the tour and celebration with another fine serving of food and drink in the Capitol Ballroom and then headed back to the docks. Kazyn waved goodbye and told me to invite anyone else I knew to the town, as all are welcome. Upon preparing to depart on one of the outgoing ships, I took one last look back to admire the town’s hospitality, generosity, and spirit.
So long, Port Phoenix, may you receive many visitors in the years ahead!
There is so much to explore in Port Phoenix and other towns throughout New Britannia. If you are interested to become part of the Port Phoenix community, feel free to contact WrathPhoenix in the forums with any questions you have!
Do you have a town, guild, or other group we can spotlight? Message Berek!