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Mach Picchu

Mach Picchu

Relevance:

It provided the aesthetics for Windy Valley.

It's hard to imagine Mache Picchu having a resemblance to Windy Valley, but the style and texture of the Inca architecture here, is mirrored in the level.

At such high altitudes the ground is no longer visible, the mountain top can feel detached from the world, on a cloudy day this perception is future reinforced. No doubt the games designers drew upon the experiences of detachment and isolation when designing the Windy Valley level.

One of the main attractions at Mache Picchu is the Inca Trail. The trail involves crossing a rope bridge suspended over a deep gorge. The bridge would have provided inspiration for those featured in the game. Because the bridge is one of the only ways to enter Mache Picchu Sonic Team mused have crossed it. When the Sonic Adventure International Forum video is viewed, in one particular shot the bridge can be seen in the background.

Information:

The city of Mach Picchu is located high in the Andres mountains in Peru, 43 miles northwest of Cuzco. It is situated at the top ridge above the Urabamba gorge and the massive Huaynac Picchu to which the Urabamba River bends round sharply. The surrounding area is mostly covered in bush, some of which hide Pre-Colombian cultivation terraces.

Mach Picchu was built between 1460 and 1470 A.D. and was most likely a royal estate and religious retreat under the rule of Pacacuti Inca Yupanqui, the cities geographic position did not make it suitable for military or commercial use. After Pacacuti's death Mach Picchu became the property of his kinship group which was responsible for the maintenance, administration and any construction that took place on the site.

The city is comprised of approximately 200 buildings including storage structures, public buildings and temples, but they were mostly residential. In fact, including the surrounding area, Mach Picchu housed a total of 1,200 people, mostly Priest, women and children. The city is believed to be designed and supervise by professional Inca architects. Most of the structures were built from Granite blocks cut with Bronze or Stone tools and smoothed with sand.

The Incas planted crops such as Potatoes and Maize at the site. To get the highest yields possible they used advance terracing and irrigation methods to reduce erosion and increase the area available for cultivation. However it probably did not produce a large enough surplus to export agricultural products to Cuzco (the Inca capital).

Few people outside the Incas closets retainers were actually aware of Mach Picchu's existence. Before the Spanish concourse arrived, the Smallpox spread ahead of them. Fifty percent of the population had been killed by the diese by 1527. The government began to fail but part of the empire succeeded and fell into civil war. So by the time the Pizarro (the Incas conqueror) arrived in Cuzco in 1532, Mach Picchu was already forgotten.

Above, left to right: 1] Photo of Mache Picchu. 2] Photo of the bridge on the Inca trail.

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