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11 April 2006 @ 03:46 pm
I hope this hasn't been asked before... If it has, then sue me.

In Fullmetal Alchemist, volume 6, page 168, chapter 25 (Yes. I remembered all that. Shut up.), Breda beat someone for the fifteenth time in a row at Shogi, which is the Japanese form of chess. Three panels over, Breda tells Falman that it's a "form of chess called 'Shogi' from an island country in the east." Would that mean that a Japan might actually exist in Fullmetal Alchemist?
The Indomitable Sambruisedgarden on April 12th, 2006 03:31 am (UTC)
Yeah, there might be two, but I seem to remember my Prof going over Chin and another word (Most likely Xin(g)) being the same. But, like I said, it's been about 3 years since I took that class. I'm also too lazy to go look it up.

As all the other speculation stands, though, I believe they're right. Amestris stands for eastern Europs (and some Western) in general, and Ishbal is the Middle East, with Xing being China and lands beyond. Dracma to the north could work for the Swedes/Norwegians/Fins Etc directly north of the Germanic countries. I'd expect something like the Spanish to come from the West, and the Romans/Greeks from the south. But that's just a guess based on geography. Amestris could just be a small part of Germany, in actuality, or an amalgamation of surrounding countries.

However, being from Canada, I actually really do find it hard to grasp the size of the countries, when the province (out of 10 Provinces and 3 Territories) I come from could swallow up four or five European countries. So, yes, I do have a very hard tom grasping distance in Europe. I expect Amestris is no more than 1000-2000 miles (at the VERY most) in diameter, though, as there seems to be no difference in climate and train trips don't seem to cover more than a day or two.
Ketitaketita on April 12th, 2006 07:07 am (UTC)
I didn't really get a Germanic impression from Amestris at all. The language they're speaking, and the names, are obviously not German, it's English. I think it's a much more Western-Europe type country. (Not similar to Slavic countries much, really)
As for the size- I believe it was mentioned that it takes them something like two or three days train ride just to get to Rizembool, which isn't even all the way at the border, it's only something like halfway there if I remember Amestrian geography right. I really need to look this up. That means that a trip from Central to the border would take about 4-5 days.
The average speed for one of those trains would probably be around 65 mph, (going up to seventy-ish during long stretches). So if you calculate how long they would take to get to the border, that still makes the border around 6000 miles from Central. And that's just the radius. Meaning Amestris would be about 12,000 miles radius, making it approximately 113 million square miles, or about 290...million...square...kilometers. Hang on, that doesn't make sense.

So if we're being conservative and saying it takes two days max (and not even two whole days), that still comes out to be 54 million square kilometers, or 21 million square miles.
The smallest I can bring it down to (with 15 hours at 60 mph to the border) is 6.5 million square kilometers. Which is nearly the size of Canada (nearly 10 million SQ KM).
Either way, Amestris is huge.
of course, there's the possibility I fudged all my calculations.
The Indomitable Sambruisedgarden on April 12th, 2006 02:38 pm (UTC)
I really doubt that it's the size of Canada... for me to go just halfway across the country requires 3-4 days of driving 100-120km/hour (with obvious stops). To cross two provinces is about 14 hours at 100-120 km/hour (with only about an hour of stops), so I can't see Amestris being that large.

I'm basing this on the fact that in the anime or manga, we have never seen any sleep cars on the trains. They're all just normal streets. And considering that if Amestris were even near the size of Canada, and travelled the average speed of a train, they would definatley need sleep cars. I don't think we've ever even seen then on a train at night.

So, I'm going to stick with the idea that it's only a couple thousand miles in diameter. Also, I'm considering climate and geography, like I said. If you go even a few hundred miles from North to South in Canada, sometimes even east to west, the geography changes dramatically. That there aren't any mountains in the middle of Amestris that we've seen, or that the weather dosen't change much either tells me there's no chance it's the size of Canada. Unless Arakawa didn't figure that kind of thing in when she made the world, which is entirely feasable.
Ketitaketita on April 12th, 2006 03:46 pm (UTC)
Thing is, climate change is not always proportional to the area of the country. Take a look at Israel, for example- it's a tiny country by any standards, and yet it has heavy-ish snow up north, middling climates, and desert all in one country. Other much larger countries (say, Libya) don't have nearly so much climate change. Besides, don't we know that the border up by Drachma is colder than the center?
(I was a bit loose with the word 'near'...I mean, there was still a difference of several million square miles. Which is a large difference.) Even if it's only 500 miles radius, that still makes it 2 million square kilometers, which is still not very small.
Besides, we haven't seen enough of the climate in different areas to get a proper feel yet, I think.