A Tree Falling in the Woods
Altdorf is the current capital city of the Empire, and houses the Imperial Palace, seat of Karl Franz, the Great Cathedral of Sigmar, the Colleges of Magic and the School of Engineers. Being the capitol, it is a massive trading center and its docks are constantly filled with ships and its taverns are full with the usual group of drunk students and travelers. The Imperial Zoo is also located here, full of strange and exotic animals with gigantic, Dwarf built walls protecting it from invaders.
Corruption is rife as it is effectively ruled by an oligarchy of rich merchants and minor nobles, although it is officially ruled by Karl Franz. The Imperial Palace is home to the Imperial Court, a hotbed of political intrigue, social maneuvering, and hedonistic frivolity, and contains the Council of State. This is a group formed from the noble families of the most ancient lineage. It has no actual power, other than it occasionally advises the Emperor on matters of state. The Grand Theogonist is always a member of this council, and tends to have a lot of power, testament to the strength of the Sigmarite image.
Even the Elector Counts, spread as they are, have power over the Emperor centered around Altdorf.