Ancient and medieval *crossroads* have always fascinated me. Some historical crossroads are well-known, of course, such as Constantinople (Ancient Byzantium), Samarkand, Palmyra, and Babylon. However, some are not nearly as well known. Various parts of ancient Greece, including Athens, were certainly cultural *crossroads*. I am also reminded of geographical regions, that served as cultural *crossroads*, such as the Ionian Coast, various settlements along the Black Sea, as well as the southern Balkan region, and later, the Hanseatic League of northern Germany and Poland.
I've also been doing some thinking about how many types of cultural types have been largely ignored by most gaming companies over the years--Africa, Eastern Europe, Central Asia, and India, as well as China all come to mind.
When I have done research for my degree in Ancient & Medieval History, some of my studies led me down the path of discovering much more information about all of these areas and cultures than the standard education typically provides.
I encourage all of you to do some reading and thinking about these different cultures, and also about the cultural *crossroads* that intersected with the *West*--and including such concepts and themes in your games. If you have done so already--how have you included them? What elements did you use, and what times, regions or cultures were you most inspired by?