Ravnica is a plane whose main planet is covered in a large city, also referred to as Ravnica. The City of Ravnica is an ecumenopolis, a city that spans the entire plane. Prior to the events of Dissension, the city and plane of Ravnica has been ruled by guilds of Ravnica and governed by the Guildpact for more than ten millennia.
The Center of Ravnica, the hub of the great city and the entire plane, is one of the only exposed areas of Ravnica’s original surface of any significant size. Because of this, the walkways of street level are not allowed to come between it and the sky. This site is the top of a mountain, with its base in the Undercity where Rakdos mining has changed it over the millennia into a giant column. Within this column is the Hellhole. At street level, it is flat, solid ground where many important halls and monuments are located.
Government and law: Guildpact
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Ten thousand years before the events of Ravnica, City of Guilds, the plane of Ravnica boasted untold violence and brutality, with varios factions constantly waging war against one or more of the others. Realizing that this neverending war would ultimately destroy everything, a council between ten factions was held, where the leader Azor I suggested establishing a living, breathing enchantment that would end the violence and ensure the survival of the factions. While some of the order-phobic factions had initial disagreements, the other nine leaders eventually concurred that such a pact was the best chance of survival. Each of the ten factions signed the Guildpact, and over time, these factions became the ten guilds of Ravnica.
The power of the Guildpact is subtle; it prevents any guild from dabbling into the business of any other guild or disturbing the stable power balance among the ten by twisting circumstance and coincidence to nullify the disruptive guild's actions. While the Guildpact is credited with bringing relative peace and prosperity to the plane, sporadic clashes between guilds do still occur. Despite any conflicts between the guilds at a particular time though, the anniversary of the Guildpact's signing is celebrated every year with a day-long festival, where all the people lay down their weapons and make merry. This celebration is called The Festival of the Guildpact.
Not all of Ravnica's citizens are a member of a guild; the vast majority have no attachment. However, the guilds are a required part of daily life, and their presence is felt everywhere on Ravnica.
As a plane, Ravnica seems to be isolated from the rest of the Multiverse, in a seal similar to the Shard of the Twelve Worlds, but with Ravnica as the only plane. On the surface of this 'micro-shard' is a blister, a piece of folded Æther that traps all Ravnican souls upon death, forcing them to become spirits and ghosts that manifest themselves on Ravnica's physical plane. This phenomenon might also improve the lifespan of its inhabitants, for example Agrus Kos is a normal human, who is over 120 years old, an age likely roughly equivalent to 65-70 years in Earth.
- The Azorius Senate is the legislative and judicial body of Ravnica bureaucracy. (White/Blue)
- The Boros Legion is a standing army that protects the Guildpact and contains the League of Wojek, the official peacekeepers of the City of Ravnica. (Red/White)
- House Dimir is a shadowy and manipulative guild that most believe no longer exists (amd some who know have their knowledge wiped out), it provides illegal but necesary services. (Blue/Black)
- The Cult of Rakdos, considered a necessary evil by some, is composed of thrill-killers who provide the heavy labor force of the plane. (Black/Red)
- The Golgari Swarm manages food production and organic waste disposal. (Black/Green)
- The Gruul Clans have fallen from their former glory as the keepers of Ravnica’s wilds and now are nothing but a loose affiliation of berserker clans. (Red/Green)
- The Izzet League is responsible for civil engineering works and new magical developments. (Blue/Red)
- The Orzhov Syndicate regulates trade and banking, among others. (White/Black)
- The Selesnya Conclave promotes the strongest religion and its ledev guards patrol the rural areas. (Green/White)
- The Simic Combine provides medical assistance and performs biological research. (Green/Blue)
In the novel Agents of Artifice, it came to pass that the guilds were officially disbanded. Many of the guilds were forcefully torn down due to the long simmering unrest the guildless held towards their masters. There were however, remainders of the guilds present.
The former guilds, however, were not long to rest, and they reestablished, many under new leadership and most likely with new purposes, as the original guildpact had bound them to a specific task for over ten thousand years.
- "Planes of Existence: Ravnica" — Wizards of the Coast
- "Planes of the Multiverse: Ravnica" — Wizards of the Coast