Innangards provide safe pockets in the Utgard which allow for civilizations to form. They grow larger and more stable over time, and so the discovery and protection of them is the greatest task assigned to civilization. Only the Innangards keep Utgard at bay. Outside of the Innangards are the Bridges and the Utgard.
Travel between Innangards requires using the Bridge. Innangards were created by the gods, though they are maintained by humans. The Bridge will not allow goods to pass through without people to carry them; all trade must be done by involving couriers. If you leave the Bridge, you become a [corrupted thing] or a fey. If not, you can reach another Innangard.
Utgard is the chaotic land outside of civilization. No one has mapped the wilderness properly, because its geography changes. The most important rule to remember is not to take anything from the Utgard to Innangards. Bring your own food and drink, your own protection, and don’t travel very far. The Utgard is full of poisonous plants, dangerous beasts, and terrifying fey. To assume that even the ground will remain steady is to assume too much.
Magic only works on living things. Because it uses life force. Shapeshifting self is easy. Shapeshifting into animals is possible to do easily but reversing it is much more difficult. Turning into dumb animals releases waste magic; ambient magic is attracted to living things, resulting in shapeshifting animals. Turning into a smarter creature is much easier at a certain level of intelligence. Many individual animals have developed intelligence this way