Known the world over as a haven for martial arts, the city-state of Mar is unique in that no one particular martial arts style dominates its philosophy. In fact, any martial arts style may be learned in Mar; all one has to do is apply for training. It is very rare for a teacher to turn away an applicant, even if that applicant is unable to pay the normal training fees.
Shy’R, Black Wyrm, White Raven, and Way of the Octagon are taught here in addition to common martial arts. Many of the higher ranked masters are cross-trained in the two arts. Martial arts challenges are a somewhat common occurrence in Mar. All challenges, however, are decided by a highly structured, almost elegantly polite contest, which is rarely fought to the death. Armed or unarmed, the major point of contention is honor, and this noble tenet is almost always upheld.
The main streets of Mar are lined with dojos, schools, and martial arts training facilities. Literally dozens of establishments offer some form of training, while an almost equal number offers varieties of arms and armor for sale.
The elected O Senz, or great mayor, of Mar serves for one year, from Midsummer 1st to Midsummer’s Eve. Elected by majority vote of the citizens of Mar, the O Senz typically is one of the greatest masters in the city.
To stimulate the growth of the arts, the O Senz’s office awards a hefty 10,000 Star prize for the invention of any new martial arts discipline by a citizen of Mar (citizenship must be earned in Mar; one must apprentice to a local school for a period of at least one year to qualify). The new discipline must pass a stringent examination by the O Senz, and must be capable of being taught to at least one other martial artist. An annual award of 25,000 Stars, granted during the New Year Festival on Midsummer 1st, goes to the creator of the best new discipline of the year. The city knows no enemies, and has no city walls. Few, however, are bold enough to attack a city of martial arts masters, especially when those of all creeds can benefit from its teachings.
Population: 4500 Human: 65% Starin: 10% Khazak: 5% Tauran: 10% Others: 10%