Welcome to the 7 circles of hell.
All players start on the outer ring. The first player has a starting bonus of 8, the second player has a bonus of 9, etc. with a maximum starting bonus of 12.
Ring 1 is the outer ring. Continents on this ring are worth 1 unit per turn. Ring 2 is inside that, and its continents are worth 2 units per turn. The pattern continues until you get to Hell. Hell is a continent that is worth 7 units per turn.
The lines connecting territories indicates further lines of attack and fortification. Each segment wraps back upon itself, so all territories effectively have a neighbor to the left and to the right.
Inner rings have attack/defense advantages against the outer rings. That advantage increases as you get closer to the center. The second ring has a +1 attack/defense advantage to the first ring. The second and third rings have a +2 advantage. The fourth ring has a +3 advantage. The fifth ring and Hell have a +4 advantage.