Could we play a LOW MAGIC game? I would ruv you forever!
As much as I want to give you a yes, I really do tend towards the high magic myself. Low magic would not be to my strengths. Though I do try to keep a mythic element to magic, where I can.
This requires that we have a single setting where we'd all be located... maybe having that set location would help everybody narrow down their concept?
Here's an idea. I'm just making this as I go along, so if people don't like it or want changes let me know. It's not set in stone.
Delbaeth is one of the few surviving cities of the ancients, built and abandoned before recorded history. Predating the memories of elves and fey, within the spans of history of which the dragons will not speak. Long held to be cursed and the dwelling place of creatures of darkness.
Six hundred years ago, the spurned prince Dels, son of the elven king Tez of Kazlens and his first wife the human maid Audrine was denied his throne because of his half-cast blood. He left his kingdom, to seek fate out as an adventurer, mercenary leader and some histories would say brigand. Towards the end of his career, he reclaimed the city Delbaeth with a force of a thousand men, slaying the creatures that had taken residence within. Popular legend says that he faced the great shadow beast Ena, alone deep beneath the city and slew it within a duel.
Since that time, his descendants have held the throne of the citystate of Delbaeth ruling the city and the three days of farmlands lying in each direction which feed the mighty city. The aristocrats of the city descended from the thousand men who accompanied him, each rewarded in land and spoils enough to set up their families through to the present day.
The city, like all work of the unknown ancients, is built to a scale that baffles the human mind. Though only half a mile in diameter, the circular walls that surround the town are a thousand feet high, carved of smooth blue marble that has never been found anywhere in nature. Yet the greatest monument of all, the Delbaeth spire is not the work of the ancients. Tez' grandson Akmens, began work on the spire though it took two centuries to finish. The spire towers two hundred feet above the mighty walls, proving the ingenuity of modern architecture as the match of any works of the past.
The spire is a tower of wide sloping rock, resembling a mountain more than any building, built an eighth of a mile wide at its base and mostly solid throughout to support the weight above it. Yet at the point the spire breaches the top of the wall it changes immensely, the last two hundred feet are built of a white marble, carved like the stem of a flower, the flat platform at its peak carved like widespread petals.
The eastern wall of the town is lined with factories and buildings of industry. The smoke that belches from their chimneys unable to climb the massive length of the walls and falling back to the ground in clouds of sickening smog. Those who work in this district can be recognised by their distinctive cough and tendency to spit black ichor.
A large section in the west of the town has been walled off. When corruption allowed this segment to be built from wood instead of the stone of the rest of the city, a large wall was raised around it to prevent fire from spreading beyond this volatile seed-bed. The criminal element, the poor and disenfranchised often end up here. Many are unable to pay the tradeweight of silver (1 SP) tax to pass through the gate of this walled section frequently, those within have entered a closed economy where prices of basic goods are often shamefully high for such a poor area.
Around the base of the spire, noble estates form in clusters, most built of the same marble as the peak of the spire. The richest man by far within the city is the human Darethus who owns the nearest marble quarries a week away by the southern trade road. His sprawling manor is finer than those belonging to the nobles and aristocrats whose own marble homes have helped to line his pockets over the years.
Massive gates are set in the north and south of the city's wall. Five hundred feet high and three hundred feet wide it takes a full day for them to be winched shut by an entire herd of oxen. The gates open onto a main street hundreds of feet wide, running to the base of the spire. Along the way, the road opens out into wide merchant greens.
The roads in and out of the town are never empty as a constant stream of merchants move through, bringing the goods that allow a cosmopolitan town like Delbaeth to thrive. Though the regular population is only around 30,000 the travelers, tourists, adventurers and merchants who come here raise the population another 30,000 on average with their comings and goings. Inns thrive within the city, catering to those of every taste (and price range).
Mighty merchant guilds compete with the power of the king, while criminal cartels plots from all around the streets. Foreigners from countries no one has ever heard of arrive every day. Anything you seek to buy can be found somewhere on its streets.
Delbaeth is a city of contradictions, of power and wealth and equally of the dispossessed and poverty-stricken.
Above all though, it is a city of adventure.