Located in the center of an infinite plane (Concordant Domain of the Outlands), the planar metropolis is built on the inner surface of an enormous ring of unknown material floating above an infinite spire. The only known method to enter Sigil is by portal, but there are thousands of them for Sigil is the city of doors. Some of these portals look and function like doors until the proper gate keys pass through them. Others resemble gates and portals in only the most basic respects.
Once an individual enters the city, they immediately realize how polluted the air is with soot-laden air mixed with the sounds and smells of a thousand worlds and planes and their inhabitants. A near-perpetual haze blankets the city, mixed with the low hanging clouds that form the city's own gray and dingy weather. There is no sun or moon and no real "horizon". There are no true storms and it never gets very hot or very cold. Yet Sigil still enjoys days and nights much like any prime material city. In the early hours of the morning, the sky slowly brightens, reaching a peak of illumination as bright as the noonday sun. After peak, the illumination fades over the next several hours until darkness reigns, and then the whole cycle starts over. When one looks up into the night sky, Sigil's stars are the flickers of torchlight and lanterns from the other side of the city high above.
The only common plant life in the city is a planar weed known as razor vine, with the common annoyances that weeds provide and the deadliness of barbed-wire. The architecture of the city has no dominant style, reflecting whatever residents live in the specific ward. The city itself is divided into six wards that have no clear boundaries, as new streets are created and old ones are removed. From the Lower Ward (industrial district), to the Lady's Ward (the temple district and the residential of the wealthy), the Market Ward (commercial district) to the Guildhall Ward (middle class district), the Clerk's Ward (lower class district), and the Hive (the slums and ghettos), it is a city of nearly infinite possibilities.
The Three Laws and the Cager's Canon
- One cannot summon or be summoned in the Cage
- One cannot enter or leave the Cage by Astral connections, Ethereal admissions, or Shadow conditions.
- One cannot be a True god and live to tell the tale
- One does not incur the wrath of our Divine Lady of Pain or embrace her Shadow's Kiss
Doorway to Inifinite Possibilites
The Cosmology of Planescape is the Great Wheel but it doesn't need to stop there. Sigil offers the opportunity for others to play characters from alternative worlds, timelines and cosmologies, for Sigil exists parallel, aside, and under our own. Portals come in all shapes and sizes, from rabbit holes to cabinets, all that is required is the right key.
Whoa! Stop right there addle-cove! You best tell those clueless the real dark on Sigil and why its called the Cage. Yes, Sigil is the City of Doors with a countless number of portals leading to Apollo's theater to Queen Maeve's closet. But its also called the Cage, because the portals are never permanent. Sometimes they're there today and gone tomorrow, sometimes they're only one way and leading to some hell dimension that will put you into the dead book real quick. And when you do find the right portal leading back home, you need a key that could be a phrase, someone that hasn't been born yet, or a common household tool that you would never think of. This leads to many poor sods being stranded in a alien burg far away from their kip. After all, there are countless Krynns, Faeruns, and Oerths. How can a body be sure, that the portal leading to Oerth is actually "his" Oerth.
Welcome to the Cage
The Great Bazaar
A basher can't help but notice the oddities that is the Great Bazaar: a city of tent stalls and shops, where common, rare, and magical wares are sold daily on the street. Inhabitants from a thousand worlds converse in alien languages and attempt to catch the attention of tourist and shoppers alike. Performers dance on the street corners, musicians play music with strange instruments, theologians preach their philosophies to those willing to listen, and magicians perform acts of prestidigitation.
In the eye of this storm is a small cafe with open-air seating. The tables and chairs are a mish-mash of designs and sizes to suit all comers, some of the pieces looking very elegant and others as if pulled out of a trash heap. The counter is "manned" by an odd boxy figure on stick legs. Those knowledgeable of the Planes would call it a modron but for some reason it answers to the name "CageGolem." Near the cafe is a shimmering piece of wall. It's one of the few key-less portals in the city and leads directly to an alleyway in the Hive. Nearby shopkeepers and the modron itself have been known to toss disruptive people through the portal if they refuse to take the trip on their own.
A horrid stench that one cannot find the source of, is the first indication of entering the Hive. Ramshackle and crumbling buildings dot the landscape, graffiti art painted in various substances can be seen everywhere. The streets are full of potholes and ooze puddles, the alleyways with gloomy inhabitants crowding around camp fires. Ragpickers push carts full of the dead, painted women walk the street ways offering promises of pleasure, and the walking dead roam about displaying commercial advertisements nailed into their bodies.
A tiefling hobo guards an alley's archway with white graffiti displaying a open maw. A ragpicker waits patiently beside his cart, as he entertains himself with a gnome's skull. Through the archway is an open area often used as a fighting arena, though it looks as if it started out as a cleared space amid the rubble of a collapsed building. Large chunks of fallen stone have been pushed into use as makeshift seating for those watching (and often betting) on the outcomes.