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supernal

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  1. Superlike!
    supernal got a reaction from Houndy Poochykins for a article, New Member Guide   
    WELCOME, TRAVELER . . . 
     
     
    to the promised land - of roleplay!
    Valucre is a forum roleplay site. The fact that we have no central plot and don't separate our member base into silos of experience makes us a little different than your average roleplay site. We take things a step further by providing a unique and persistent global setting. A full planet capable of supporting most themes and ideas, with dozens of plots all happening at once, some large and encompassing, others small and intimate. 
    There's so much to do and see on Valucre you could spend hours for days on end going through guides, sheets, and lore. But don't worry. No one expects you to catch up on over a decade of history just to jump in and start creating with us. 
    Think of Valucre's body of work less like a guidebook you have to read just to make sense of where you are, and more like an encyclopedia or a reference guide that you can look to when you want to add immersive details to your post, such as the political climate of one area or the visuals of another. 
    Below are a number of tiles which cover different topics. You can visit the page by just clicking on the tile that you want to learn about. Give our guide 15 minutes of your attention and you'll be starting on a strong foundation. 
    If you have any questions about the site at all, ask the Outreach team!

      
      

     
  2. Thanks
    supernal got a reaction from Etched In Stone for a article, Vampyr   
    VAMPYR
    Type » Humanoid: Aberration (Undead) Temperament » Neutral (Creatures that aren't outrightly aggressive but will attack if directly provoked, such as when their lives or territories are threatened). Formerly Aggressive.  Sapience » Complex Size » 5-7 feet Weight » 100-300 lbs Location » Cities of Terrenus; Tia Environment » Population centers; dark environments Organization » Single; packs Special Abilities » Blood drain Author's note: There are many different mutations of Vampire, ranging from the Bram Stroker Classic to the Modern Twilight spectacle. An endless variant of "type" can exist but what I seek to do with this article is establish the standard they deviate from. The following is an entry for the standard Terran vampire.
    The basic definition of a vampire is: "A cadaver who retains a semblance of life and can retreat from the grave." Under the Gaian religion vampires are the children of the Weaver, because they are 'static'/unchanging in 'life'.
    The vampiric affliction is supernatural in nature but spreads like a virus under specific conditions. The two requisites for the transference of the affliction is massive loss of blood and an introduction of the 'virus' when the organ systems cease functioning. The virus interrupts the death process, makes the body oxygen-independent, and shifts the biological system into a state of constant entropy that is halted, and reversed, only by the introduction of fresh blood, platelets and plasma. Vampires are compelled to feed but do not strictly need to. Starvation leads to emaciation and eventual insanity.
    The vampire feeds off of life-force, and the most accessible medium through which they can tap this energy is blood. Immature vampires (three centuries or less) need to drink blood to survive and are more biological entities than supernatural ones. Mature vampires (three centuries or more) are more supernatural entities than biological ones, are more in tune to their necromantic nature and can access life-force directly. They are capable of draining energy by contact (vampiric touch) and can influence others through enchantment.
    Both classes of vampyr come with distinct advantages and disadvantages. Immature vampires are more aesthetically pleasing in that they look "normal", hence are more capable of blending into society. They are physically repelled by a wider range of holy symbols, regardless of religious affinity as long as the wielder has faith. They are physically stronger and faster, much like adrenalized versions of their past selves.
    Mature vampires change physically and immediately on their 300th birthday. They lose all their hair, their fingernails grow to the size of claws and can function as such, their scleras blacken and their irises become a deep, hypnotic red. Mature vampires are afflicted only by the holy symbols of the religion of their culture, regardless of their personal belief. They are affected by holy energy rather than specific symbols of other religions. A mature vampire's strength is fueled by life-force, rather than their biology, and so they are capable of reaching levels of strength and speed not accessible to immature vampires or mortal beings.
    Both classes of vampire are weak against fire, will die if exposed to prolonged and direct sunlight, are allergic to silver, wild rose and hawthorn plant. Immature vampires are capable of sex for 16 hours after feeding. Neither class of vampire can enter a residence unless invited by the owner. Decapitation, immolation, and a wooden stake to the heart are the only known ways (besides sunlight) of killing a vampire.
  3. Superlike!
    supernal reacted to OBELUS for a article, Obelus Index   
    Where is Obelus?
    We have been searching for millennia.
      Where are the Obeli?
    We are everywhere.
    The Obelus Canon is a site-wide metaplot built on the premise that nearly every single individual instrumental in shaping human history on Valucre are descendants of four siblings: Davant, Nomalis, Ingsol, and Malark.
    The aim of the Obelus Canon is threefold:
    first, to explore genres that subvert the largely fantasy/adventure themes of Valucre such as sci-fi, superhero, speculative fiction, mystery, and psychological thriller. second, to facilitate a long-term, interconnected, character-driven international plot involving as much of the original lore of Valucre as possible, giving these more depth through character actions and player contributions. third, to create a hybrid roleplay-ARG experience through OOC and IC puzzles, riddles, codes and ciphers. The Obelus Canon aims to be player-driven, with OBELUS in a facilitator role.
    Integration of existing plots and lore into the Obelus Canon is encouraged.
    Collaboration is key.
    DAVANT
    —acta non verba— The Superhumans
    NOMALIS
    INGSOL
    MALARK
    Prologue
    → What came before
    → The Death of Elendaron → September 20, WTA 597 → What do they know? → What will you learn? → Where are the Obeli?
    Chapter 1: The Sancturion and the Enlightened
    Begin to see with eyes wide shut Sovereign must pay for his sins.  
  4. Like
    supernal reacted to Csl for a article, Taen Materials List   
    Natural
    Lazurum - term widely-used to refer to mineral naturally imbued with worldrift arcana. Lazurum has a dark blue color and often resists the laws of physics, though the wide variation in its effects prevents it from being used reliably. While knowledge of its nature and application remains limited, an airship from Hydra's Haven has successfully prototyped an antigravity system using Lazurum.
     
    Manufactured
    Cottawood - a wildlight-engineered tree variant widely used for building construction. Cottawood structures are visually identical to brownstone and can be sculpted without branches or leaves. Widely used in buildings in Lunaris and can easily integrate plumbing and illumination.
    Lucental glass - glass doped with a transparent, chemosynthetic fungi that filters out swamp miasma and absorbs solar energy. The glass is produced from the Wetlands’ lakebed silt and prominently used in Arcturon's architecture.
  5. Like
    supernal got a reaction from The Alexandrian for a article, Teletype   
    Picture distributed under OGL
    TELETYPE
    Type » Insect: Arachnid
    Temperament » Aggressive — Creatures that tend to attack rather than flee, whether for food, to defend a territory within a certain radius. They will usually break pursuit when too threatened.
    Sapience » Complex
    Size » 16-20 feet
    Weight » 500-700 lbs
    Location » Ezh Khaelidruiza; Nich'e
    Environment » Caves; underground
    Organization » Packs
    Special Abilities » Telepathic; telekinesis
    Although the absorption rate is not perfect, the teletype's peculiar diet leads to increasing cunning, greed, and madness. Teletypes feed on dreams, memory, intellect and sanity.
    Teletypes have been present on the Terrenus continent for thousands years. Teletypes were known enemies to the Frost Giants, having engaged with them in several distinct wars over periods of time spanning centuries. In recovered tapestries and art work from the Shawnee region, there are indications that the teletypes are the primary reason the Frost Giants became feebleminded and lost their history and culture. The Palyopama proved no less savage for losing their intellect and killed most of the remaining teletypes. One spider escaped to a building in ancient Blairville which would later become the Tower, where it locked itself away to avoid being killed with its family. 
    The Blairville natives reinforced the lock via ritual and the spider had not seen outside of the Tower for over a thousand years, where the Cold Snap broke the lock and a cartography expedition to map zones of the Tower inadvertently set it free. Since being freed, that spider has gone underground and begun the arduous task of awakening other large arachnids, which go into a chrysalis and emerge psionically enhanced. 
  6. Like
    supernal got a reaction from The Alexandrian for a article, Enrele   
    ENRELE
    The below information is a living document and subject to change. It is incomplete information about an alien biology and one that is particularly subject to change due to an ability to edit its own genes
    Type » Animal: Insect (Alien Parasite) Temperament » Aggressive (Creatures that tend to attack rather than flee, whether for food, to defend a territory within a certain radius. They will usually break pursuit when too threatened.) Sapience » Other Size » 4-8 feet Weight » 10-20 lbs Location » Dougton; Ponkapoag Lake; Various cities throughout Terrenus Environment » Aquatic; Host bodies Organization » Hive-mind; Fractured hive-mind Special Abilities » Chemical manufacturer; internal telepathy; guided micro-evolution by editing own genes Drop Items » Paralytic producing gland (1-60%); Hypnagogic producing gland (61-79%) Intact Enrele body (80-99%) These terrifying creatures originated from interstellar space and were transmitted to Terrenus in the core of a meteor that struck and deepened Ponkapoag Lake centuries ago. The Enrele had taken primary residence within the second strata of the Ponkapoag Lake crater, bearing a resemblance to seaweed with large pods and air-bladders. One curious scientist put an ad out in the classifieds and, having gathered interested parties, made his way to Ponkapoag Lake to find survey bottom.
    A hatched Enrele looks vaguely like a jellyfish with a few key differences. The stingers are hollow and secret a combination of a paralytic and a hypnagogic agent, the combination of which places the prey into a state where they drift between consciousness and unconsciousness.
    Tendrils that can interface with the central and peripheral nervous systems extend from these hollow stingers and hooks at the end to ensure a solid grip. This makes the Enrele capable taking over the host system bodies. The body-snatcher will ride its host physically, often times settling itself across the band of the host's back, just beneath where the neck meets the torso. They operate as individual organisms when inside of separate hosts but are really fragments of a hivemind, requiring that constituents find ways to upload information to the master brain in order to add knowledge to the collective conscious.
    The creature can also use its host's reproductive organs for its own reproduction cycle. When reproducing, the host secretes clusters of gooey, writhing pustules that often infect the nearest biological system (using the human reproduction system and delivery of spermatazoon onto ovum, the results are devastating).
    SPECIATION
    Information on Daloth
     

  7. Like
    supernal got a reaction from The Courier for a article, Standardized Quest Rules   
    Consistent in Terrenus, Genesaris, and Renovatio
    General System
    PM board leader to confirm quest availability Put "quest" in the title to make for easy visual tracking Threads (or players) that go 30 days or more without a post are subject to have their quest listed as available Threads must be completed within 1 year of their start date Rewards can include: canon changes to the setting, special materials acquisition, or generic IC spoils When complete, go through canonization process and PM board leader Classification System
    Class C (Easy): 1 player (or more). 1+ page (16 posts or more). Class B (Medium): 1 player (or more). 2+ page. Class A (Hard): 1+ players. 3+ pages. Class S (Crazy): 2+ players. 5+ pages.
  8. Superlike!
    supernal got a reaction from Csl for a article, Martial Town   
    Original author: Paroxysm
    Heavy contributions (Districtse): Die Shize

    License: Paul Hartzog [CC BY-NC-SA 2.0]
    Palgard - Remnants
    In the year 026 AO, Palgard sustained deliberate, catastrophic damage to its infrastructure and leadership, causing innumerous civilian casualties and the collapse of the Mega-City’s government. The world had become bedlam, and anarchy ruled the streets. Normal, everyday citizens, bolstered by a host of mercenaries and visiting anarchists, revolted, rioted, and ransacked the hurting megatropolis. The city had been ruined, if not in form, then in spirit. Death had come for it again.
    But as in the past, Palgard has refused to succumb. Its newly appointed PeaceKeeper appeared following the city’s fall, and with her came the word of law, and imperial strength enough to enforce it. She marched at the head of a great confederacy of soldiers levied from surrounding cities and communities. They brought a measure of order to the chaos, carving out a section of the city for reclamation. Their mission objective was simple: bring Palgard back into the fold, for empire, for the Saint King, for Gaia.
    Martial Town
    Martial Town used to be earthen fortifications raised up from streets cleared of debris and people. Four years old now and entering adolescence, Martial Town today  encompasses all of the the surrounding neighborhoods, repairing, or otherwise repurposing, the apartments, storefronts, and the high rise buildings that yet stood in defiance of Palgard’s defeat. And with its growth, so, too, did its population rise. Soldiers brought their families, refugees sought safety, and opportunists followed the flow of commerce as rumors of the Way Gate’s reactivation reinvigorated the local economy and renewed interest in the city.
    This renewed interest in the city does not bring just growth and opportunity however, but also conflict and strife, as not all citizens are willing to live under military thumb. While the majority of Martial Town, especially its central, regularly patrolled military district, is safe to travel and live, its burgeoning borders and hanger-on communities see significantly higher rates of crime than elsewhere in Terrenus. These peripheral neighborhoods are owned by gangs and tribes of anarchists, sometimes backed by enterprising capitalists, and are further bolstered by the sudden influx of illegal trade brought on by missing military supplies, a black market trail speculatively originating from northern Palgard, and a nebulous network of underground contacts seeking the opportunities afforded by a city in disarray.
    Life can be good in Martial Town, or it can be very bad indeed. In order to fight against rampant unemployment and poverty, the occupying military has decreased much of its recruitment from outside of the city, focusing instead on paying adventurers, mercenaries, civilians and the occasional specialist party, keeping the city’s internal economy churning, if only barely, through frequent objective-based undertakings and the rebuilding of infrastructure. Toward this end, many of the black market deals, underground contracts, and use of illegal technology in the district is tolerated within limits.
    Districts
    (Core, Buffer, Peripherals)
    The heart of Martial Town, its most central area, is called the Core. Here is where the Martial Town Government is based, as well as some of the most prominent and most wealthy residents of the city.
    Crime rate is at an all time low within the Core, at least depending on a particular interpretation of the word "crime". While the Core is quite the opposite of the Peripherals, the outer city limits overrun with organized crime groups, anarchic syndicates and street gangs, the government employs its own full-standing military force to police the city's center. This comes with a price. Crimes against the citizens are still committed. Unsanctioned home invasions. Random street inspections. Abuse of evidence and general abuse. It is all contained enough to minimize the threat of riots, but everyone knows it happens. It is something of an accepted reality.
    Nonetheless, such actions are largely limited to those residents of the Core who make up the general population of the militarized district, versus it's higher class citizens. One need not be particularly esteemed or rich to live here. Maybe you have a particular trade or skill that almost forced you to be relocated. Often, it is just a matter of behaving well enough to remain, or proving so and heading through the gates from the Buffer. A number of people do so gladly. Given the tradeoff, they would rather live under the eyes of a camera and listen to boots marching the streets, wondering if a knock would come on their door and a soldier would show up, compared to a knock on their door and thief or a murderer showing up who was not kept in check.
    Additionally, residents of the Core have an opportunity to work their way up to better living standards, including within the ginormous skyscrapers at the heart of the heart itself. While some of these great towers are owned by and dedicated to the government and the most powerful corporations, others are self-sustainable complexes that provide the greatest security, sustenance and seclusion from the rest of the city.
    Living in the Core really boils down to a matter of preference and permission. As long as the city government allows you to, you are allowed to. As long as you would rather live under the thumb of the government and its military than the MTPD, the corporate paramilitary forces or criminal elements of the Buffer, or worse, the endless gangs, rebel groups and crime groups that overrun the Peripherals, then the Core just might be for you.
    Zones
    GRAFT Center (Genetic Research, Augmentation, Fortification and Transformation)

    License: zaroshi [CC BY-NC-ND 3.0]
    The GRAFT Center is the headquarters of the GRAFT Corporation. "GRAFT" stands for "Genetic Research, Augmentation, Fortification and Transformation", a broad series of terms that cover a broad variety of functions.
    While GRAFT clinics are spread throughout the city of Martial Town, from the Core to its suburbs, the GRAFT Center contains the most sophisticated and state of the art technology to service its clients. It fulfills a variety of needs for cybernetic limb and organ replacements, and cybernetic enhancements, such as infrared eyesight.
    However, GRAFT is not limited to just 'technology', as with mechanized or digitized features. The former is its primary identity, but it also supports a full-fledged magical enhancement program; a nice alternative to any technophobes, though the reverse also applies.
    Additionally, the GRAFT Center, located in the militarized heart of Martial Town, is where the bulk of the corporation's research is spearheaded, among all levels, including both magic and technology.
    The Purple Penguin
    Amid the night life of Martial Town, where the streets are lit up by neon dancers merely in the way the advertisement signs blink and flash and glow, The Purple Penguin represents the pinnacle of that night life.
    Located on the 'border' between the Core, the militarized heart of Martial Town, and the far less policed areas that serve as its outskirts, the nightclub receives a diversity of visitors, from regulars to newcomers looking for a good night out after a hard day's work.
    Amid its trademark purple lightning that basks the entire building, inside and out, day and night, The Purple Penguin boasts three public floors and a fourth VIP floor that includes management. The floors beneath this one cater to a wide variety of music, with soundproof walls offering additional sections and bars.
    The Purple Penguin offers more than music and drink, however. It is almost impossible to forget or forgive the drug scene running rampant, though this in turn provides any would be do-gooders with a morally questionable source of intel.
    The CyberFunk Cafe

    License: David Revoy / Blender Foundation [CC BY 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0)]
    Located nearer the Core, amid its most lively shopping centers, The CyberFunk Cafe is a cybercafe said to always be filled, but always having an empty seat available.
    This paradox of a statement is in part due to the ear-splitting arcades located beneath the soundproof floor of the main cafe. On the main floor, guests can enjoy a latte spiked with caffeine to see their eyes through a deep dive into their favorite VR program, or simply a soothing cup of tea while they surf the web on a laptop for a fine leather trenchcoat on sale.
    Whatever the customer's desire, the cafe itself can probably cater to it, with cakes and scones aplenty. In its own parallel, however, the arcade rooms below ground have a much quicker pace. Down here, gamers of all kinds can sit back and relax, or sit forward in highway-racing tension, as they play video games of all types. Sometimes that may mean looking at a screen from feet, or inches, away. Other times, it may mean plugging a cable into the back of your head and closing your eyes while your mind enters a world like in one of those Sword Art Online games. KAWAAIII!!
    However, what most people are not aware of is that The CyberFunk Cafe has a third level—one beneath the arcade floor, accessed only by a secret door and express permission. This is where an underground hacker club, called ILLusive, plays a whole different game, one with real stakes, and real thrills.
    Pal's Guard
    Pal's Guard, obviously a play on "Palgard", is not at all anyone's idea of a playful bar. This drinking establishment is owned by the well established Vilad Circle, one of Martial Town's most ruthless and powerful organized crime groups.
    Headed by the elven Vilad Family rumored to hail from Palgard since around its inception, the Vilad Circle, as the overall crime syndicate, has since employed other species of all kinds to do its bidding and dirty work. Thieves, assassins, hackers, black market merchants, drug dealers, prostitutes and other colorful careerists come here already under the Vilad Circle's ring or as fresh folk looking for a new career path.
    Whatever the case, whatever the face, the Vilad Family usually doesn't care who, how or why. They are only concerned with profit and power, two paramount aspects that are inseparable as far as they believe.
    However, probably not a good idea to come to Pal's Guard for a beer and nothing else. There are nicer, friendlier, cleaner bars out there. Enter at your own risk, and remember where the nearest GRAFT clinic is!
    MTPD Headquarters (Martial Town Police Department)
    Where the Core of Martial Town is chiefly policed by the government's military force, along with the private military companies of certain corporations, it falls to the Martial Town Police Department (MTPD) to keep the greater extent of the city in check. As with many things in life, however, that is a task that is easier to write than to carry out.
    Only the bravest, finest and most able and capable souls sign up for the MTPD, or else those with a death wish, a low IQ or a streak of psychopathy as they seek to abuse the badge and beat the victims being repressed by it.
    Meanwhile, the farthest suburbs of the city would be hard pressed to find an officer on patrol, unless they're really just strolling toward some crime lord so that they can receive their bribe money.
    There are, though, those who firmly believe in the badge and what it represents. Then there are those hired by the badge, bounty hunters and private detectives, because, when it comes to Martial Town, the MTPD needs all the help that it can get.
    Little Weland

    License: Waylon Wesley [CC BY-NC-ND 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/3.0/)]
    Just beyond the Way Gate facility, another community has formed from within Palgard, made up of the Weland expats that sought safety in numbers after the collapse of the city’s government. Their desperation made them susceptible to the Bessho-kai, a family of wealthy entrepreneurs that had stricken an accord with the people, offering protection in exchange for labor and small favors, but who now hold the district in their clinched fist.
    The Bessho-kai keep their streets free of outside influences, but their own people are nearly as bad as the anarchists. There is a foot soldier on every street corner, and an eye or an ear always watching for troublemakers or potential threats. They harass the people for what little they have, and recruit their children, perpetuating a cycle of violence and extortion.
    Technology
    Magic and technology are not at war. Like much of Terrenus, they are instead blended and mixed together, until where the one begins and the other ends cannot be easily distinguished. However, much of the heavily regulated, illegal, and obscure technology kept off the streets in the larger cities has in Martial Town fallen into use by anyone aware of, and able to afford, the black market. Most of the technology is benign. City-wide communications are now easily available, and enhanced prosthetics, both bleeding edge and crude knockoffs, some owed to Hell’s Gate, others Last Chance, can be acquired with no red tape or government interference.
    Then there are the killing implements. Cybernetics and magical augmentations designed to make recipients harder to kill while also making them more efficient at the act themselves. Bone-lacing, retractable claws, subdermal implants and vision enhancements, equipment normally associated with military wetwork can be acquired and utilized with little to no interference from the government. For a price.
    People
    Humans, elves, orcs, dwarves and other, Martial Town and its immediate surroundings are made up of many, of a diverse, hodgepodge people whose differences have allowed them to adapt even to its current circumstances. They move ever forward as cutthroats meet military task force, or corporate backed mercenaries. The poor and the downtrodden pick up weapons and fight back, choosing one side or the other, or neither. They exist in flux alongside their city. Order and chaos flowing one way, then the other.
    Canon
    I mean, really now: Eldwine organizes a team in Martial Town to help recover a shipment of stolen ercaniron which was stolen from the bandit who stole it to begin with. Through the course of an operation which drags them all over Martial Town and ends with a raid on a police station evidence locker, the loot is successfully recovered and divided among them. An aye for an eye: The General'ny Direktor engages in a mech battle for the win, and manages to pull off nabbing a cabinet that contains the powerful Left Eye of Mogonto
  9. Superlike!
    supernal got a reaction from Twitterpated for a article, Standardized Artifact Rules   
    Consistent in Terrenus, Genesaris, and Renovatio
    General system
    PM board leader to confirm artifact availability Put "artifact" somewhere in the title to make for easy visual tracking Threads (or players) that go 30 days or more without a post are subject to have their artifacts listed as available Threads must be completed within 1 year of their start date  Threads must use the narrative damage system, or express some equivalent difficulty, at least once Artifact threads are open to meaningful interruption Respect the fact that these threads often require structure and planning Respect that the item is high value and someone may show up to oppose you. Antagonist beware however, because if you interrupt the thread your contribution to the thread should be significant - either making up a large contribution to the thread or taking place in a separate thread prior to joining the existing thread NDS, MOBS or any other system of board leader choosing will be used to determine end result if another system is not agreed on by players 3 artifact limit per player Hunting artifacts one after another is allowed; hunting two or more at the same time isn't When complete, go through canonization process and PM board leader Omit Opportunities and Consequence Classification system
    Item weighting: Readymade items (pulled out of a magic hat) > Canon backed items (roleplayed out and submitted to canon) > Artifacts (significantly powerful items as approved by a board leader in their list)
    For artifact vs artifact, thread content will determine the class of the artifact relative to other artifacts
    Class B (Medium - minimum for an artifact): 1 or more players; 2+pages 2+ people to Challenge Class A (Hard): 1 or more players; 3+ pages 3+ people to Challenge Class S (Crazy): 2 or more players; 5+ pages 4+ people to Challenge Challenge system
    Owner must not have a relevant IC post in the last 60 days. Use it or lose it.  If you've been added in error, contest with a link to the relevant post. Relevant posts must be made before included challenge date  If you believe an artifact isn't available that should be send board leader a PM Challenger must complete a "seeking" thread that is 1/2 (or more) of the claim thread in order to challenge for ownership This thread should be used to justify how challenger heard about or discovered current artifact / location Once seeking thread is complete, send PM to current owner and board leader to arrange organic conflict thread  Owner has 2 weeks to reply and make arrangements. Failure to reply forfeits the artifact which the challenge can claim by completing the basic artifact post requirements if not already met If a challenge thread goes inactive for 30 days, and the player challenged has made at least 1 RP post in that time, the challenge expires and the timer is reset NDS, MOBS or any other system of my choosing will be used to determine end result if not agreed on by players
  10. Like
    supernal got a reaction from Dauner Light for a article, Mild Powers   
    Valucre is a mild powers forum. This means that we allow the use of powers, abilities, magic, etc. but limit them so as to keep the site balanced. There is wiggle room, mostly for the sake of story, but there has to be a cap. A new member that joins Valucre with a balanced character and sees someone throwing mountains will feel pressured to beef up in response. We emphasize balance, weaknesses, and character development over ability or power development. The error is in taking a tops-down (powers first) approach rather than a bottoms-up (character first) approach.
    As Valucre is a free-form site, rank or stat based systems are not an option. All we ask is that members exercise prudence when creating, choosing, and using abilities. Given the comfortable scale that our mild powers definition establishes, we care more about the end result, or consequences, of powers and abilities rather than origins or rationalizations. Our Character Creation Guide can give you some direction if you find yourself at a loss.
    Combat is always optional and requires both declaration and consent. As long as it is stated and agreed upon by both players, any system can be used to resolve an in-character conflict. Examples of this include collaboration (staff recommended), coin flips, dice systems, and so on. If players agree to combta but can't agree on a system, the default is the Mostly Orchestrated Battle System. Alternatives include the Terrenus Dice System and the Chosen Tournament Ruleset (Supplement: Fun with T1 is a useful, unofficial guide written by a member to help other members), among any of the various homebrew systems that you can find or create. 
    |Mild Powers|
    In order to understand the terminology, one needs a bit of history. In messenger, before Valucre was created, there were a few distinct forms of turn-based combat. Speed based combat emphasized speed, paragraph combat emphasized detail. PC allowed for a no-holds barred exhibition of ludicrous power, RM followed strict rules of realism. At some point MP was coined as a term to mean a system somewhere in the middle of the spectrum, where powers and magic were allowed but limited. The limit applied both to the amplitude of attack, the sheer number of abilities allowed, as well as a focus on generally doing away with any type of god-modding.
    |Examples of forbidden abilities|
    Excessive temporal manipulation ("Haste", for example, does not count; time travel does) Reality manipulation Creation of black holes or other celestial / astronomical bodies or phenomeona Attacks that manifest instantaneously Indestructible weapons, armors, unstoppable magic, infinite or impervious items, etc |Examples of generally disallowed abilities (can be used for NPCs or collaborative story purposes)
    Soul stealing (some writers don't believe in, or make use of, souls in their writing for example) Manifesting an attack inside of another person Automatic mind-control (vs attempted) Teleportation and other "instantaneous" abilities or actions "Magical scanning" or otherwise being able to meta-game knowledge about another user |Examples of allowed abilities|
    Enhanced senses Augmented physical and mental abilities Psionics (telekinesis, telepathy, pyromantic, etc, all dependent on the degree) Magic (spells, runes, hexes, voodoo, etc) The above describes Valucre's policy on types of attacks. Next, we will discuss the scale or amplitude of abilities.
    For storyline purposes, massive attacks are allowed within reason. World- or continent-destroying attacks will essentially always be disallowed; city-busting is sometimes feasible depending on the effort and activity leading up to this as well as obtained permission and coordinating of plot; and the destruction of a building or buildings is usually considered the upper limit of a character or group of characters. Be prepared to put in a considerable amount of work. Contributors work for years building up conceptual sand-castles, and don't want to see them destroyed in a turn or two.
    Abilities are judged mostly on their destructive or constructive potential, or the scale on which they apply, as opposed to their complexity. Stopping a boulder mid-flight and pushing it away is less complex than turning it to sand but both work on a similar scale and essentially accomplish the same thing.
    Creator: supernal
    Editors: desolate, traxien cion, supernal
  11. Like
    supernal got a reaction from Auspicious Link for a article, Code of Conduct   
    Article I - INTRODUCTION
    (a) The code of conduct is in place to keep Valucre safe and enjoyable. The titles and summaries give a sense of what each entail and most of it is common sense. 
    (b) The Ignore option on the forum allows you to avoid individual players with whom you do not wish to interact. However should you encounter another player presenting a serious risk to yourself or other players or maliciously undermining your game experience, please make use of the Report feature to escalate the problems directly to staff. To ensure that reports contain all necessary detail, please follow Valucre's reporting template.
    (c) The definitions of terminology and actions in the rest of the document are as interpreted by administration. This is a living document and subject to change, so check back often.
    Article II - IMPORTANT NOTE
       (a) Repeatedly violating any area of the Valucre Terms of Use or Forum Code of Conduct, including the areas detailed below, will often result in permanent banishment from Valucre. The rules and outcomes listed within this code are not all exclusive or all exhaustive. Conduct that is determined to be detrimental to people, products, services, content, and property of Valucre but is not listed here is still bannable.
       (b) This policy is not language-restrictive. Language that falls under this policy will always be subject to the repercussions listed, whether it is inappropriate in English or any other language.
    Article III - TERMS / DEFINITIONS
    Ban: Standard ban length is 30 days for 1st violation.
    Valucre or Valucre Services or VS: All Valucre services inclusive of the forum, any related chat, any related social media, etc.
    Warning: A warning is delivered through the forum software. A verbal warning imposes 0 demerits on a user account and is used to track incident information. 1 demerit results in an automatic 30 day suspension. 2 demerits results in an automatic indefinite ban.
    Article IV - Retaliation-Free Policy
    (a) Valucre prohibits any form of retaliation or intimidation against members who report good-faith concerns of discriminatory, harassing or unethical conduct, or who participate in investigations of such conduct.
    Article V - Harassment and Defamation
    (a) Harassment is here defined as unwelcome conduct that humiliates, offends or intimidates. It is characterized by persistent and repeated negative behavior directed at a specific person. Harassing behavior includes (some of which is repeated in other rules for clarity):
        (1) Unmerited and excessive criticism
        (2) Gossiping, spreading false rumors or public humiliation
        (3) Publicly insulting or making unwelcome negative comments about, but not limited to: race, religion, ethnicity, nationality, gender, sexual orientation, disability, etc
        (4) Telling other members not to interact with someone
        (5) Making fun of personal circumstances or appearance
        (6) Inappropriate questioning on racial or ethnic origin (includes other classes e.g. gender)
        (7) Repeated and unwanted preaching on political or religious matters
        (8) Realistic threats to commit harm
        (9) Any implication or statement of material, real or imaginary, that is released or threatened to be released on Valucre's platforms that may harm or damage an individual's or group's' reputation or social standing
        (10) Creating false or defamatory posts or threads to discuss disciplinary actions taken against a player
    (b) Harassment takes many forms, and is not necessarily limited to the type of language used, but the intent. Repeatedly targeting a specific player with harassment can lead to more severe action. The idea behind this is to prevent any one player from constantly being uncomfortable in the forums.
    (c) If a player is found to have participated in such actions, he/she will:
        (1) Be temporarily or permanently banned from Valucre, depending on severity
        (2) Be given a final warning, after which any further Code of Conduct violations may result in a permanent ban from Valucre
    Article VI - Sockpuppet Accounts 
    (a) A sockpuppet is an online identity used for the purposes of deception. This applies primarily to creating multiple accounts to:
        (1) Circumvent board measures such as topic bans or member ignore lists
        (2) Getting "new member" access such as for the TOL or any other exceptions
        (3) Logging into another member's account and pretending to be that member
        (4) Deceptively contact other members
    (b) If a player is found to have participated in such actions, he/she will:
         (1) Be given a final warning, after which any further Code of Conduct violations may result in a permanent ban from the forums
         (2) Be permanently banned from the forums
    Article VII - Extreme Sexuality / Vulgarity / Violence / Inappropriate Language
    (a) This category includes both clear and masked language and/or links to websites containing such language or images which:
        (1) Refer to extreme and/or violent sexual acts
        (2) Refer to extreme and/or violent real life actions
        (3) Erotic roleplay / depiction of sexual intercourse
        (4) Pornography of any kind
        (5) Are otherwise considered objectionable
        (6) Bypass the Mature Language filter
    (b) While these repercussions may seem harsh, we feel very strongly that this behavior has no place on the forums due to its extremely offensive and inappropriate nature.
    (c) If a player is found to have participated in such actions, he/she will:
         (1) Be given a final warning, after which any further Code of Conduct violations may result in a permanent ban from Valucre
         (2) Be temporarily or permanently banned from the forums, depending on severity
    Article VIII - Real-Life Threats
    (a) This category includes both clear and masked language and/or links to websites containing such language or images which:
        (1) Refer to words, images, actions or conduct that seeks to directly or indirectly harm another person outside of in-character interactions
    (b) If a player is found to have participated in such actions, he/she will:
         (1) Be temporarily banned from the forums, depending on severity
         (2) Be given a final warning, after which any further Code of Conduct violations may result in a permanent ban from the forums
    Article IX - Distribution of Real-Life Personal Information
    (a) This category includes:
        (1) Releasing any real-life information about other players or Valucre staff

    (b) If a player is found to have participated in such actions, he/she will:
        (1) Be permanently banned from the forums
    Article X - Posting Malicious or Illegal Programs
    (a) This category includes:
         (1) Posting links to malicious viruses / programs / warez
    (b) If a player is found to have participated in such actions, he/she will:
         (1) Be permanently banned from the forums
    Article XI - Impersonating Staff
    (a) This category includes:
         (1) Passing yourself off as Valucre staff directly or indirectly via modified transcripts, photoshopped pictures, etc 
    (b) If a player is found to have participated in such actions, he/she will:
         (1) Be given a temporary or permanent ban from the forum, depending upon severity
    Article XII - Illegal Drugs or Activities
    (a) This category includes both clear and masked language and/or links to websites containing such language or images which:
         (1) Encouraging abuse of illegal drugs
         (2) Encouraging/performing of illegal activities
    (b) This category includes the posting of copy written material
    (b) If a player is found to have participated in such actions, he/she will:
         (1) Be given a temporary ban from the forums, depending upon severity
    Article XIII - Spamming or Trolling or Griefing 
    (a) This category includes:
        (1) Excessively communicating the same phrase, similar phrases, or pure gibberish
        (2) Creating threads for the sole purpose of causing unrest on the forums
        (3) Causing disturbances on Valucre, such as picking fights, making off topic posts that derail the thread or discussion, insulting other posters
        (4) Excessive making of non-constructive posts
        (5) Abusing the Reported Post feature by sending false alarms or nonsensical messages
        (6) Any perceived attempt made through any number of means to include various forms of deception, phishing/phishing, social engineering, lying, dishonesty, or any form of manipulation, to gain information that someone is not entitled to or that violates the privacy of another member

    (b) If a player is found to have participated in such actions, he/she will:
         (1) Be given a temporary or permanent ban from the forums and an OOC restriction, depending upon severity

    Article XIV - Advertising / Cross Linking Threads
    (a) This category includes advertisement of:
         (1) Any non-beneficial, non-Valucre.com related businesses, services, organizations, people, fundraisers or websites (charities are allowed only after review from Valucre staff)
         (2) Linking to threads from other roleplay forums

    (b) If a player is found to have participated in such actions, he/she will:
         (1) Be given a temporary or permanent ban from the forums, depending upon severity
    Article XV - Encouraging rule breaking behavior
    (a) This category includes:
         (1) Attempting to tamper with a witness for a report through intimidation, bribery, etc
         (2) Attempting to convince other players that the Code of Conduct are different from what they actually are
         (3) Attempting to convince other players to deliberately circumvent the Code of Conduct or technical controls
         (4) Hosting, facilitating, linking to, or providing software which links to, forums/chat where users discuss behavior which breaks rules, or help or encourage each other to do so.
    (b) If a player is found to have participated in such actions, he/she will:
         (1) Temporarily or permanently banned from Valucre, depending upon severity
    Article XVI - Circumventing a Suspension / Ban
    (a) This category includes:
         (1) Posting on another account
         (2) Having someone post on your behalf
    (b) If a player is found to have participated in such actions, he/she will:
         (1) Be permanently banned from posting on the forums
    Article XVII - Citing the Code of Conduct
    (a) For quick reference please use the article roman numeral indicator followed by paragraph and subparagraph marker.
        (1) Example: XVII(a)(1)
  12. Think
    supernal got a reaction from Jotnotes for a article, Forgotten Wood   
    No photos or sketches exist or can exist.
    No one knows how old the Forgotten Wood is, where it came from, or how it came into being. The cryptic nature of the Forgotten Wood is not an odd one when put into context of speculation about it. It is important to note, again, that no one actually knows anything concrete about the Wood. All consequent information is intellectually arrived at but is rarely little more than speculation.
    Reasons behind the origins of the Wood's mystical fugue are wide-ranging. One rumor is that the Wood was once a secret lair for Zengi the witch-king, who enchanted the Wood so that none could ever find it and so those that did could never speak of it.
    Another rumor, and what is regarded as the most likely, is that the Forgotten Wood is the home of the Fairies. 350 years ago the King of Fairies, disgusted by the human disregarded for Nature and all of Her gifts, took his kinfolk into hiding. Contemporary anthropological opinion is that they moved from the vast and plentiful Blue Hills and swept through the area of Moonwood, leaving behind a fragment of their culture that was not ready to fully retreat from the world. Because of the current of their movement, the Forgotten Wood seems like a prime target.
    Information from experiments performed in a time before Odin's enlightened reign has been recently recovered, and establish a few critical facts. Prolonged exposure (~3 hours) to the magic in the Wood results in acute amnesia that progressively increases in length and magnitude. In the beginning stages it is bothersome to hold on to little details for long. Then minutes of time start escaping one's grasp and before long the spell-induced amnesia envelopes the rest of the mind. Over the course of a few days, or weeks, a man can end up nothing but a drooling, mindless husk withering away from hunger, unable to glimpse cognizance long enough to remember the food in hand.
    Canon
    Chaos Event - Ooga Booga!: Three lone people band together to wage war upon a growing threat from the undead in a small village. With effort and cunning they resolve and dispose of the problem with some difficulty. Now the people live in complete peace free from the dead to pass.
  13. Like
    supernal got a reaction from Dolor Aeternum for a article, Hell's Gate   
    Themes: High Tech; Science Fantasy - Mild Powers
    Regent (Is): Matthius Brown
    Regent (Was.2): James P. Scott
    Regent (Was): Eustace Monroe
    In the original tongue, the city's name translates loosely into The Gates Built Before the Inferno. It was only after the Republic fell, approx. 853 BG, that the city was renamed Hell's Gate. 
    Social Temperature
    News
    A serial killer talks the streets of Hell's Gate, and seems to be targeting the members of a specific religious order known as the Order of Thorns.
    Young PeaceKeeper Michael enrolls into a combat surveillance program which sees him partnered with a "slice" of the Victory ASI (artificial super intelligence)
    Geography
    Topography
    Hell's Gate straddles the line between the  savage Wilds and the Wastelands. To the north and east lies the inhospitable stretch of desert that makes up nearly a quarter of the Terran continent and which is home to the Shawnee Glacier. To the south and west stretch hundreds and hundreds of miles of unbroken savanna and plains land. To the far south is the Great Pine Barrens, the largest forest in Terrenus.
    Below is a list of nearby locations and their approximate distances
    North: ~1300 miles to center (not peak) of Dead Peaks. North-East: ~850 miles to heart of High Desert. East: ~650 miles to Forbidding Hills. South-East: ~1000 miles to Dark Forest. South: ~650 miles to Black Range. South-West: ~650 miles Langley Keep. West: ~1700 miles to Blaurg Mountain. North-West: ~1900 to heart of Coconino Marsh. Cityscape
    Stepping within the city limits of Hell's Gate, one feels the full weight of Terran brilliance bearing down from every angle. The architecture is unlike any other in the whole of Terrenus. The buildings reach to dizzying heights. 
    Tectonic faults have been patched up by Gaian Engineers, removing virtually any threat of earthquakes. The bases of the buildings are modeled after massive trees, with complex root systems reaching down into the earth and anchoring the buildings against powerful winds. The buildings themselves are truly massive. Several of these are 'micro-cities, internally self-sufficient and capable of being completely isolated from the rest of Terrenus with regards to energy, food, and waste disposal. For now the micro-cities are built with educational entertainment and leisure in mind.
    Climate
    Hell's Gate's ambient temperature was originally to the point that only Wasteland natives were capable of settling. A massive underground aquifer fed by various channels from a water source far west was the city's only source of water. In the flourish of knowledge and magi-technology since, Hell's Gate ambient temperature is at a more tropical and an artificial river running through its direct center is used for trade and washing but kept clean enough by internal purifiers to classify as potable.
    Flora and Fauna
    Elderberry: Elderberry is a fairly abundant plant used in a common form of Terran divination which uses tea leaves. One variant throwsthe leaves on the ground or in the air and predicts the future by how they scatter. The most common involves drinking a tea made of elderberry and navigating through cryptic and symbol-heavy delusions to decipher the threads of fate. It is dark brown or dark red and usually around 40 centimeters in length.

    Demographics
    Culture
    Eustace Monroe, esteemed civil engineer before becoming mayor of Hell's Gate, has been quoted as saying that "if I see Gaia in anything, I see her in nature. As much in the elegant mathematics of a flower as in the intrepid manner that all life. Even life-less forms seek to defy their chains. So as the storm rages and the lightning cracks, so as the waves swell and drown the lands, so as the fire blazes and consumes all, so as the mountains reach for the heavens I tell you that man is more audacious yet!"
    Economy
    Hell's Gate is the largest manufacturer of magi-tech both national, and as Terrenus is the father of magi-tech globally, internationally as well. 
    Companies, institutions and locations
    Airship Docks: What commercial air traffic there is in Terrenus finds a major hub in Hell's Gate docks, the largest, most popular and most secure of the nation. There are three (five as of 26 AO) primary docks for enterprise vessels and a slew of smaller ones for private vessels. Archaeology Laboratory: Dedicated to research for anthropological archaeology and biological anthropology. Lab houses space for garbology, lithics, spatial archaeology (GIS), zooarchaeology, forensic anthropology and, recently, the addition of a small cryptozoological department.  Declared bankruptcy due to lack of funding from private investors.  Club Tablillas:  An exotic nightclub, with an attached karaoke restaurant, located on the west side of Hell's Gate.  Here, every breath is an enchantment and every movement is an exhibition of power.  This Stygian expanse, illuminated solely by fantastical sources of light generated by the club's many patrons, bleeds ghostly shadows that amplify emotion, transforming it into a sensible force that shapes the environment in unpredictable ways. Eustace Monroe's Laboratory: The Monroe Lab is the converted mansion of the last lordship, and previous regent, of Hell's Gate. It is a castle, a veritable fortress, retrofitted with cutting edge technology to service chemical, biological, and engineering research. Limbo: Junkyard in HG's south-western quarter Monroe Foundation: The commercial arm of the Monroe dynasty. The Foundation now specializes in automating technologies, after being beaten out of the medical field by House Trasimene. The president is Eustace's younger sister, Henrietta. A master in engineering and software development, Henrietta piloted complex golem intelligence and has pioneered the first Artificial SuperIntelligence (ASI) housed in an organic matrix. The Weary Orc: The generic tavern and inn, acting as the de facto meeting spot for anyone that doesn't want to shake-n-bake one of their own. The Slipstick River: Giorgio Slipstick (natural philosopher and civil engineer) designed the Slipstick River in the last year of his life. Despite Hell's Gate bordering the Wastelands, this magi-tek driven river remains cool and clean, constantly recycling and purifying itself. Government
    Local government
    Watchmen
    20,000 soldiers: Trained by the military and assigned from all across Terrenus. 20,000 Enforcers: The local police are a structured militia, for all intents and purposes. Since they are made up primarily of the citizens, as opposed to having been assigned by the military, the police are more likely to be corrupt. 12,000 Wastelands Border Patrol: Hell's Gate is their headquarters. PeaceKeeper: NPC Federal government

    Education
    Hell's Gate education focuses primarily on engineering, magitechnology, and natural science.
    Notable Residents
    Armand Maray: Armand moved to Hell's Gate due to a lifelong passion for technology but employs ancient and esoteric methods in his occupation as artificer.  Van Edmund: PeaceKeeper Eustace Monroe: Esteemed engineer and previous regent. Alongside Odin Haze and Edward Brown, Eustace was one of the pioneers of the magi-tech revolution that swept over Terrenus shortly after the Crusades.  Henrietta Monroe: Engineer, software developer, automation specialist, and current president of the Monroe Foundation. Henrietta is Eustace's younger sister. She has a skin disease which makes her look much older than she is, and in spite of her physical fitness. Trilith: Although not strictly speaking a resident of Hell's Gate, becoming the champion of the MOBS tournament has catapulted Trilith into the local spotlight. History
    Canon
    Club Tablillas - The Redeemer and The Heiress: Ilyana Sevryn and Caeceila Glasmann forge a momentous alliance with the ultimate goal of resolving several of the woes afflicting Hell's Gate, principally combating the local Enrele epidemic and agitating for more reasonable deployment of Artificial Intelligence within Hell's Gate or, failing that, sabotaging industrial applications of Artificial Intelligence within Hell's Gate. The long road home: A criminal trio travel to Hell’s Gate. After realizing they are low on funds, two adopt the guise of random women and manipulate a few men into purchasing a room. Rodan (one of the criminals) mutates a man into a rug, another into a copy of the innkeeper where they're staying (Nature's Repose) and telepathically manipulates the real owner into deliberately walking into a trap. As the dust settles after this bloody takeover, Lunara (another criminal) makes a local contact who helps smuggle Rodan to Weland while she travels with Agony (the third criminal) to Yh'mi. Desolation: A brutal serial killer known as the Apostate stalks the streets of Hell's Gate, targeting members of a select Gaian sect known as the Order of Thorns, as Detective Alexander Hawk races to stop him The cost of victory: Michael Commager's Oculus crystal is removed and repurposed to house a limited instance of the Victory ASI, developed in Hell's Gate. The purpose of this is two-fold: to gather data on field-test combat and investigation scenarios as navigated by a PeaceKeeper, and to observe Michael's mental and physical state after the combat in Last Chance. Chasing Damaged Threads: Caeceila Glasmann has captured three persons of interest from the Red Festival and delivered them to a Hell's Gate military outpost for advanced interrogation. Consider the roots: A Gaian priest and two apprentices (Yates, Mae, and Kai, in that order) are on task to explore an underground access tunnel discovered by a commercial construction crew; a common enough task for an order of geomancers. Underground they discover a murder, the town of Anchorage with its stone-people, and a volatile religion with an ominous creed. Emergence from Hell's Gate: A new crime family begins to rise in Hell's Gate eastern district. Their leader makes a simple offer: join, die, or disappear. I, Henrietta: A tour through the famed Monroe Foundation's automation facilities turns sideways. A little girl is kidnapped, at which point she's revealed to be the new artificial intelligence Henrietta has spent years creating. Noel, Invarti and Tancred give chase to the kidnappers, taking them through explosive filled runes, a high speed chase to a flight school, and the forceful grounding of an airship to keep the AI from leaving Terrenus First steps of a long journey: One exiled king's quest begins with a single step in Hell's Gate. Corruption in Hell's Gate: Investigating rumors about corruption in the police force in the run-down sectors of Hell's Gate, the police discover a mysterious group known as Bushido Blade, led by master thief Lexi Sterling. They are stopped but the motives behind their infiltration are still unclear.  Hunting for the broken hearts killer . . . wait, another?: A group has gathered in Hell's Gate to investigate a copycat of the Broken Hearts Killer. They find and arrest the suspect. Bad Times in Hell's Gate: An orc and a former assassin work together to protect the people of a tenement from three vicious gangs looking to exploit the location for their own desires. Using poison, the orc and assassin are able to turn the gangs against one another and succeed in saving the citizens from the gangs.  FIST - A deadly melody: Detective Hawk was sent to Hell's Gate to investigate the Broken Heart Murders, only to find that the murders were being carried out by multiple people. Further investigation dispelled the idea of a cult and Hawk uncovered a dangerous musical enchantment at the core of the mystery. Hawk gathered survivors of the Song to fight against the Infected and has requested a quarantine over part of the city where the disease is worst.  Truth of Bombing: A while ago a primary dock in the Hell's Gate airport was bombed. After the rebuild effort, Heina (Terrenus Military) and her colleague Alex began investigating the cause. They combat mercenaries dressed as fake soldiers and send collected information to Central.  Quarantine: During a quarantine, an unknown group of assailants make their way onto one of Hell's Gate's three primary airdocks by inciting a riot and using this as a diversion to sneak into the dock's power control center and blow it up from the inside. Hell is Within You: A star labelled "Ggatho" rises, and one of the resident astronomers brings with it ill tidings and has, in some manner, unleashed the White Death (Infected is afflicted with a lethal chill, skin turning white and gleaming, before becoming stiff and dying) upon the western quadrant of the city. To Kill A Mockingbird, Pt. 1: Unknown personnel infiltrate Dr. Monroe's manor in the wake of the Docking Station explosion. Research on pheromones as well as the student conducting the research has gone missing. This is the second kidnapping, including that of one Eustace Monroe, to happen on the manors ground within 48 hours. A sell sword selling his sword: For some time now rats have been a problem in certain parts of Hell's Gate, but recently the rats have gone from nuisance to legitimate threat as they have been seen swarming and attacking citizens. Elijah, retired Wastelands Border Patrol, found that the source of the rats mysterious aggression was some manner of mutant rat-man. Eijah then acted out his role as pest-control. Past
  14. Like
    supernal got a reaction from Dolor Aeternum for a article, Enrele   
    ENRELE
    The below information is a living document and subject to change. It is incomplete information about an alien biology and one that is particularly subject to change due to an ability to edit its own genes
    Type » Animal: Insect (Alien Parasite) Temperament » Aggressive (Creatures that tend to attack rather than flee, whether for food, to defend a territory within a certain radius. They will usually break pursuit when too threatened.) Sapience » Other Size » 4-8 feet Weight » 10-20 lbs Location » Dougton; Ponkapoag Lake; Various cities throughout Terrenus Environment » Aquatic; Host bodies Organization » Hive-mind; Fractured hive-mind Special Abilities » Chemical manufacturer; internal telepathy; guided micro-evolution by editing own genes Drop Items » Paralytic producing gland (1-60%); Hypnagogic producing gland (61-79%) Intact Enrele body (80-99%) These terrifying creatures originated from interstellar space and were transmitted to Terrenus in the core of a meteor that struck and deepened Ponkapoag Lake centuries ago. The Enrele had taken primary residence within the second strata of the Ponkapoag Lake crater, bearing a resemblance to seaweed with large pods and air-bladders. One curious scientist put an ad out in the classifieds and, having gathered interested parties, made his way to Ponkapoag Lake to find survey bottom.
    A hatched Enrele looks vaguely like a jellyfish with a few key differences. The stingers are hollow and secret a combination of a paralytic and a hypnagogic agent, the combination of which places the prey into a state where they drift between consciousness and unconsciousness.
    Tendrils that can interface with the central and peripheral nervous systems extend from these hollow stingers and hooks at the end to ensure a solid grip. This makes the Enrele capable taking over the host system bodies. The body-snatcher will ride its host physically, often times settling itself across the band of the host's back, just beneath where the neck meets the torso. They operate as individual organisms when inside of separate hosts but are really fragments of a hivemind, requiring that constituents find ways to upload information to the master brain in order to add knowledge to the collective conscious.
    The creature can also use its host's reproductive organs for its own reproduction cycle. When reproducing, the host secretes clusters of gooey, writhing pustules that often infect the nearest biological system (using the human reproduction system and delivery of spermatazoon onto ovum, the results are devastating).
    SPECIATION
    Information on Daloth
     

  15. Like
    supernal got a reaction from ticklefarte for a article, Mild Powers   
    Valucre is a mild powers forum. This means that we allow the use of powers, abilities, magic, etc. but limit them so as to keep the site balanced. There is wiggle room, mostly for the sake of story, but there has to be a cap. A new member that joins Valucre with a balanced character and sees someone throwing mountains will feel pressured to beef up in response. We emphasize balance, weaknesses, and character development over ability or power development. The error is in taking a tops-down (powers first) approach rather than a bottoms-up (character first) approach.
    As Valucre is a free-form site, rank or stat based systems are not an option. All we ask is that members exercise prudence when creating, choosing, and using abilities. Given the comfortable scale that our mild powers definition establishes, we care more about the end result, or consequences, of powers and abilities rather than origins or rationalizations. Our Character Creation Guide can give you some direction if you find yourself at a loss.
    Combat is always optional and requires both declaration and consent. As long as it is stated and agreed upon by both players, any system can be used to resolve an in-character conflict. Examples of this include collaboration (staff recommended), coin flips, dice systems, and so on. If players agree to combta but can't agree on a system, the default is the Mostly Orchestrated Battle System. Alternatives include the Terrenus Dice System and the Chosen Tournament Ruleset (Supplement: Fun with T1 is a useful, unofficial guide written by a member to help other members), among any of the various homebrew systems that you can find or create. 
    |Mild Powers|
    In order to understand the terminology, one needs a bit of history. In messenger, before Valucre was created, there were a few distinct forms of turn-based combat. Speed based combat emphasized speed, paragraph combat emphasized detail. PC allowed for a no-holds barred exhibition of ludicrous power, RM followed strict rules of realism. At some point MP was coined as a term to mean a system somewhere in the middle of the spectrum, where powers and magic were allowed but limited. The limit applied both to the amplitude of attack, the sheer number of abilities allowed, as well as a focus on generally doing away with any type of god-modding.
    |Examples of forbidden abilities|
    Excessive temporal manipulation ("Haste", for example, does not count; time travel does) Reality manipulation Creation of black holes or other celestial / astronomical bodies or phenomeona Attacks that manifest instantaneously Indestructible weapons, armors, unstoppable magic, infinite or impervious items, etc |Examples of generally disallowed abilities (can be used for NPCs or collaborative story purposes)
    Soul stealing (some writers don't believe in, or make use of, souls in their writing for example) Manifesting an attack inside of another person Automatic mind-control (vs attempted) Teleportation and other "instantaneous" abilities or actions "Magical scanning" or otherwise being able to meta-game knowledge about another user |Examples of allowed abilities|
    Enhanced senses Augmented physical and mental abilities Psionics (telekinesis, telepathy, pyromantic, etc, all dependent on the degree) Magic (spells, runes, hexes, voodoo, etc) The above describes Valucre's policy on types of attacks. Next, we will discuss the scale or amplitude of abilities.
    For storyline purposes, massive attacks are allowed within reason. World- or continent-destroying attacks will essentially always be disallowed; city-busting is sometimes feasible depending on the effort and activity leading up to this as well as obtained permission and coordinating of plot; and the destruction of a building or buildings is usually considered the upper limit of a character or group of characters. Be prepared to put in a considerable amount of work. Contributors work for years building up conceptual sand-castles, and don't want to see them destroyed in a turn or two.
    Abilities are judged mostly on their destructive or constructive potential, or the scale on which they apply, as opposed to their complexity. Stopping a boulder mid-flight and pushing it away is less complex than turning it to sand but both work on a similar scale and essentially accomplish the same thing.
    Creator: supernal
    Editors: desolate, traxien cion, supernal
  16. Like
    supernal reacted to Csl for a article, The Alliance of Sovereign Nations   
    The Alliance of Sovereign Nations
    The Alliance of Soverign Nations (ASN) is an intergovernmental alliance composed of the leaders of several nations and political entities on the continent of Terrenus. The Alliance, as it is also referred to, aims to maintain peace and security among its member nations, provide humanitarian and military assistance to members of the Alliance in need, and promote the basic rights of sentients.
    The Order of the Force Majeure act as the arbiters whenever a dispute arises between two members entities. The Alliance is also slated to host biennal games between its member nations to exercise the skill, prowess, and intellect of its member nations.
     
    The Treaty of 597 The Knights of Force Majeure will act as the arbiters for the Alliance whenever a dispute arises between two member nations that requires mediation. 
    The Allied Nations of Terrenus will host the biennial (once every two years) ASN Games to test the skill, prowess, and intellect of the member nations and their people.
    Military + financial aid. If a member nation is attacked, other member nations need to send support. Military aid if member nation is active. Financial aid, to help economy or to hire mercenaries equal to the military of a member nation, if said member nation is inactive.
    Member nations are banned from fighting each other. If a member nation enters conflict with another member nation for any reason other than they attack you first, the attacking member nation will be expelled from ASN. There must be sufficient proof of conflict. Rumors of proxy fights don't count.
    All member nations must protect the basic rights of their citizens
    Members
    Veluriyam Empire Norkotian Union Scarlet Empire Hyperion Empire Kingdom of Ursa Madeum Queendom of Svanhild Patia Order of the Force Majeure Order of the White Hand International Allies
    Emperor Koji of the Datsuzoku Dynasty
    Queen Gabriella DuGrace of Orisia
    Grand Kommadant Primera of Nehalen
      History
    The Alliance was formed in November, 597 WTA, through the initiative of the Veluriyam Empire. As one of its first achievements, the Alliance helped mobilize manpower and resources to aid in Yh'mi. This resulted in the successful construction of Bloodwatch Base at the Furthest Point.
    Canon
    September 597 WTA
    The Arrivals
    The Treaty of 597
    June 597 WTA
    Le roi est mort, vive la reine
  17. Superlike!
    supernal got a reaction from Peron for a article, New Member Guide   
    WELCOME, TRAVELER . . . 
     
     
    to the promised land - of roleplay!
    Valucre is a forum roleplay site. The fact that we have no central plot and don't separate our member base into silos of experience makes us a little different than your average roleplay site. We take things a step further by providing a unique and persistent global setting. A full planet capable of supporting most themes and ideas, with dozens of plots all happening at once, some large and encompassing, others small and intimate. 
    There's so much to do and see on Valucre you could spend hours for days on end going through guides, sheets, and lore. But don't worry. No one expects you to catch up on over a decade of history just to jump in and start creating with us. 
    Think of Valucre's body of work less like a guidebook you have to read just to make sense of where you are, and more like an encyclopedia or a reference guide that you can look to when you want to add immersive details to your post, such as the political climate of one area or the visuals of another. 
    Below are a number of tiles which cover different topics. You can visit the page by just clicking on the tile that you want to learn about. Give our guide 15 minutes of your attention and you'll be starting on a strong foundation. 
    If you have any questions about the site at all, ask the Outreach team!

      
      

     
  18. Like
    supernal got a reaction from Blackguard for a article, Gaianism: A Quick Reference Guide.   
    What is Gaianism?
    Gaianism is a cosmic religion that celebrates and recognizes Gaia as the Supreme Diety; creator and mother to all things. Although many pagan and tribal religions share close parallels to Terran Gaianism, there are differences that help tell them apart.
    The earth itself is a symbolic, rather than a literal, manifestation of Gaia, a physical metaphor for something that cannot otherwise be conceived by mortal minds and that is the source of all life, creative thought, and positive energy. Gaia is an unseen goddess in that she has no face or permanent humanoid incarnation but her presence is deeply and personally felt among her followers.
    Modern Gaianism under Odin Haze is centrally organized with an internal hierarchy among its clergymen, and a rigorous set of rituals, practices and scripture.
    Gaianism precepts revolve arond peace, love, compassion and altruism but not blind pacifism. Gaians are raised believing that good flowers through the action of good and through the prevention of evil and so often are spiritually compelled to take a stand or oppose an evil influence.
    Very few derivative versions of Gaianism propose a version of an underworld where sinners are eternally punished. Most versions with a Hell also have it that the sinner can eventually pay the balance of his sins and ascend to a purer state or that the Executioner, not bound by physical laws, is able to extract penance from the soul directly and thereby cleanse it.
    Modern Gaianism also believes that Gaia can be found through a secular life and perspective, even if the observer doesn't recognize her, if it is one of pure dedication and discipline.
    What is an Unnatural?
    An Unnatural is a being whose existence is a perversion of life. Beings commonly classified as Unnatural are: Lichs, vampires, zombies, poltergeists (but not ghosts or spirits*), aberrations, some constructs**, and Outsiders***.
    Through the very act of existence, Gaianists believe that Unnaturals physically cause Gaia harm and damage shared quality of life. Unnaturals are often killed on sight, unless the Unnatural is able to prove that they walk a righteous path.
    Revivals almost always result in zombies, save for chances of extreme and random fortune, while true resurrections result in a a palatable existence.
    *Poltergeists are lives lost in the throes of intense negative emotion or through grotesque circumstances. The result is a spirit that formed of anger and sorrow, that can express itself only in rage and violence. Poltergeists are treated as any Unnatural, and are purged, exorcised, or destroyed on sight.
    Ghosts or spirits, on the other hand, are the unfortunately trapped soul of a deceased being. These things are not 'evil' by classification. Some are fully cognizant while others are little more than segment's of a person's life, playing in an infinite loop. Gaianists help these poor spirits move on and ascend to their rightful place with Gaia.
    **This depends on the nature of the construct, its composition, and its intent upon creation. Golems, for example, are common in Terran society. Golemists make complex mechanical contrivances. Gaianists make simple workers out of earth or clay. Either way, it is a fairly common practice.
    ***Outsiders are a gray area. Though they may not be evil or undead, they are invaders of the plane and their presence can have a destabilizing effect. Outsiders are treated more fairly than Unnaturals so long as they are amenable to being Shunted if they are dangerous, and are good aligned.
    How do Gaianists control the earth and what do they call it?
    Among the ranks of those indoctrinated into the faith, the art of controlling the earth is known as "the discipline". It is a branch of knowledge; a system of rules of conduct and methods of practice. Outside of the faith, it is colloquially known as earth-bending or geomancy.
    First one "unchains the mind". This looses the hold of the ego on the Self, forcing the disciple to question who they really are and what truly informs and shapes their character. When the mind is unchained the disciple realizes the subtlety with which all things are connected and the Way is exposed to him.
    The second step is "growing closer". Here, the disciple learns the techniques and methods that bring his mind, body and soul into harmonious resonance with the earth's hum. This serves the dual purpose of synchronizing and stabilizing the rapidly maturing connection between the disciple and the world around him.
    The third step is "learning". Here, the disciple is versed in the numerous mental exercises, physical forms, and spiritual strengthening that first enables them to extend their will and influence into the surrounding nature. It is at this point that the disciple also learns their strengths and weaknesses. The peaks and pitfalls of their character determine not just the skill with which they can wield the earth, but their aptitude in phase-shifting and cross-discipline manipulation.
    The fourth and final step is "the awakening". At this point, the disciple is fully realized. The discipline is never "mastered" and so must always be studied, but it is at this point that the disciple is considered competent in their geomancy.
    It is important to underline, once again, that this is a discipline. It is not magic and cannot be dispelled or interrupted by conventional means. Anyone can learn it. Even the secular or the wicked though by the time one reaches the final step it is not uncommon for the wicked to be balanced and the secular to touch agnosticism.
    How do Gaianists view death and the after-life?
    Life is a manifestation of Gaia. Death is nothing more than a transformation of this essence, with the dying spirit ascending to a new state in the cosmological cycle. Birth and death are endless cycles of rebirth and renewal; death is not feared, but simply accepted. Those dying are returning to her grace. When this natural cycle of life and death is altered or infringed upon it weakens Gaia, which is why Gaianists are adamant against the continued existence of the Unnatural.
    Lower levels of Gaianistic heaven are seen as illusion-traps, where the ego is made complacent with luxury and convenience. The highest level of heaven is one of unification with Gaia and complete dissolution of ego as one's emotions and experiences merge with Gaia's infinite expression.
    Odin Haze is the only known being to have gone with Gaia upon death and return with his self-identity intact. Odin states that this was no special feat of his own and that it would not be so if Gaia did not will it.
    What is the Gaian view of Necromancy?
    The misconstrued view of Necromancy is as a dark art whose very nature is meant to twist and pervert the natural order of things. This is a false view that follows the art thanks only to sensationalism around a small number that have used powerful necromancy towards terrible ends. The most infamous of which is Zengi, the witch-king, and his legion of Desecrators.
    No magic is inherently good or evil and necromancy is no difference. It is the art of manipulating life and it is only the manner and degree to which this is done that determines whether it is evil or good.
    Useful talents of a good necromancer involve preparing bodies for last rites, communicating with and exorcising spirits, blessings, rebuking Unnaturals, and Resurrections
    --Side-Note C1: When interviewed, Disterl Norvomand had this to say about Necromancy:
    “Let me guess. Besides being skeletal and moody, I bet you think all necromancers are murderous fanatics eager to turn everyone they meet into a zombie slave.
    "Death has this horrible reputation with mortals. We treat it like some unnatural abomination that needs to be avoided. Death, natural death that is, should be embraced. True necromancy isn’t about zombies and blight and darkness. It is the study and respect of life and death.”
    What is the symbol of Gaia?
    In Terrenus there are two common modern symbols for Mother Gaia. One is a grand and glorious World Tree which signifies the love of life and peace shared by all Gaianists while simultaneously expressing the stability, strength, and the expansive scope of their faith.
    The other is a circle with thorns. The circle symbolizes the never-ending cycle of life while the thorns represent the martial aspect of Gaianists.
  19. Like
    supernal got a reaction from ticklefarte for a article, Guide to Canonization   
    What is the canon?
    The canon is the body of Valucre's lore. The end result of years of effort and collective, creative contribution from board leaders and site members. Please note that canon can be reviewed and retconned as deemed necessary. 
    What is canonization?
    The process where a thread or group of threads is approved and integrated into the Valucre canon. Writing to influence or contribute to canon is encouraged by Valucre's administration, but isn't a requirement for a majority of threads and should not be thought of as an impediment to any of the various plots, characters, etc. that you want to write.
    Many members can, and have, had a great deal of rich storyline and character development in threads spanning over a year or longer without seeking approval for canonization. Canonization should only be submitted if you are effecting a change to established lore.
    As a disclaimer, in any threads goal or task oriented threads with an eye towards canonization (artifact threads, quest threads, etc), users that stop posting without warning should expect to have their characters minimally controlled in the interest of the overall story. 
    What are the requirements?
    Posts in the thread should be no less than 80 words for the purposes of influencing the canon. To canonize your thread, the last post should be a summary of the events the thread contains which includes the below sections, and then send a private message to the appropriate board leader:
    A full summary: A full summary (1-3 paragraphs) must include all important details. Transparency is required here as anything not included is not considered approved. It may not seem fair but this is the most efficient way to handle a forum of this size, activity and still offer the level of creative freedom we do. A minor summary: A minor summary (2-5 sentences) should be included in the Summary as well as this is what will be included in the lore article.  Consequences and Opportunities:  Itemized list of the aftermath of your thread as well as at least one opportunity so  everyone who contributes gives others a chance to contribute as well. Example: Dragons are forever
    What if I don't submit a canon request or it isn't approved?
    If you don't submit a canon request, then your thread is not considered canonized. Not every thread requires canonization to begin with, so this process does not apply for every potential action that a character can take.
    If your request is rejected, it means the same as not submitting a request to begin with. A board leader may reject your request outright, reject parts of your request and approve others, or approve your request on the condition that certain parts of the thread be modified.
    Why this whole process?
    The idea behind the canon process ties closely into user agency and the ability of players to protect works that they spent some amount of time creating. It allows them to decide what changes and how. It isn't about saying your content isn't valid unless rubber stamped, but about being able to track and organize substantial change to shared assets by dozens of people over many, many years.
    In the past some members have felt a bit helpless in terms of impacting the lore, failing to realize that canonization isn't necessary to have a grand storyline.
    We've automated the process as much as possible to avoid unnecessary wait time. It allows board leaders to strike the balance between the freedom of the members to impact the setting and the ability of the creator of those settings to be able to shape the impact to some degree.
    And to roleplay themselves. Who wants to spend all of their time reading and none of it writing? Not me. Who wants a project they spent a year writing up and working on to be destroyed by the passing fancy of a member that spends a week on the forum and then vanishes? Same answer.
    Examples of actions that you can canonize:
    Completing a quest, which is the most common method of canonization. When completing quests, you must still generate an an RP opportunity for other members. Assassination of a canonically significant figure, which would require board leader approval and likely canon defense. Destroying, rebuilding or renovating an established business or organization. Amassing an army, making preparations for war, or other large-scale actions that would reasonably draw attention and likely canon defense.  Examples of actions that you don't need to canonize:
    Most slice of life type threads Assassination of an important figure in a personal plot (i.e. your character's mother where the mother is not a governor, etc) Your character's death (unless your character is an important figure). Destroying a ready-made (NPC made and destroyed at players discretion) town or village. Reasons why your request might be rejected:
    You exceeded Mild Powers rules. You introduced something incongruous to the local lore. The means does not justify the ends, i.e. the amount of effort undertaken does not justify your desired results. Using copy-written content (Sonic the Hedgehog, Goku, etc). Examples of roleplay opportunities: 
    Add a bounty for your player if they destroyed property or killed people Rebuild something that was destroyed / destroy something that was created Follow up on new information (names of people, cults, organizations, etc)  Who do I submit my canon request to?
    The board leaders of the appropriate section as listed in the world landing page.
  20. Superlike!
    supernal got a reaction from Tyler for a article, Fracture Landing Page   
    Terran Calendar: The current year is 30 AO = 598 WTA. All new threads happen during the current year unless otherwise stated by the creator. 

    Setting elements cannot be ignored or manipulated
    City maps are guides and not authoritative sources
    ✪ = City | ✦ = Landmark | ✿ = Independent territory
    ✪ Ignatz
    ✪ Casper (Primary sea port)
    ✪ Martial Town
    ✪ Last Chance (Secondary sea port)
    ✪ Hell's Gate (Primary sky Port)
    ✦ Langley Keep
    ✪ Blairville (Secondary sky port) ✦ Biazo Isle | Bi'le'ah | ✪ Aspyn
    ✦ Weland Gorge; Day River
    ✪ Dougton
    ✦ Scudder Forests
    ✿ Selemath
    ✦ Hills of Noddendody
    ✦ Blue Hills
    ✦ Moonwood ✦ Ponkapoag Lake | Gaian Academy; Haunted Glen
    ✦ Timber Creek
    ✦ Great Pine Barrens | No Man's Land; Witch's Cave; Herbie's Bed; Peaceful Woods
    ✦ Forgotten Wood
    ✦ Black Ridge
    ✦ Hidden Valley
    ✦ Dark Forest | The Cedars
    ✦ Forbidding Hills
    ✦ Shawnee Glacier
    ✦ The Wastelands | Badlands; High Desert; Dead Peaks
    ✦ Blaurg Mountain
    ✦ Coconino Marsh | Labyrinth Forest; Coconino Creek
    ✦ Hills of Lost Hearts ✦ Barnstable Coast
    ✦ Southern Sea
    ✿ Predator's Keep
    ✿ Amalia
    ✿ Yh'mi
    ✿ Taen | Ursa Madeum
    ✿ Norkotia
    ✿ Absalom | Béhods
    ✿ Chesterfield | Aligoria
    ✿ Nesthome | Anima
    ✿ Everrun Announcements
    Newer information at the top; keep up with the latest in the Updates thread.
    Terrenus rename to Fracture.
    During the events of Civil War - Phase 3, a number of those factions which established themselves in the Wilds have grown in size and successfully established sovereignty over their lands. Notable stewards of their respective regions are Chesterfield and COTH
    Breaking news from the Symposium Against Doom - body snatchers and volatile loci
    Visible to the entire continent, the sun burns green for ten minutes. 
    During the events of the Civil War - Phase 2, a number of different factions have established themselves in the greater Wilds of Fracture and are poised to become enclaves with sovereign leadership. This has added new territories to the map: Aligoria, Chesterfield, Everrun, COTH, Temple City, Nesthome, Anima.
    Due to the events of the Civil War - Phase 1, transportation across the nation of Fracture has been crippled and magical availability has been concentrated in the Shawnee Wastelands. 
    Geography
    Located in the north-east of planet Valucre, Fracture is approximately twice the size of the North American continent and has a citizen population of approximately 300,000,000 (three-hundred million) as of 24 AO.
    Climate
    A dense arcanosphere has resulted in sections of unpredictable climate and terrain. The fluctuating levels of magic also lead to random side effects on plant and animal life, and has been noted to render gunpowder unreliable in greater Fracture (this is meant to prompt creative alternatives to basic firearms). 
    The tip of Ponkapoag Lake will be used as the central marker for description purposes. The area enveloping Ponkapoag Lake and Coconino Marsh is characterized by warm, dry summers which average 66°F with low precipitation and cool, wet winters which average 25°F and moderate precipitation. Evergreen and deciduous trees, fig, walnut and citrus trees, and bay rosemary herbs thrive in the area.
    North of the central marker the weather increases sharply in temperature and vegetation becomes sparse as grassland and forest biomes turn into desert, which average around 100°F with pronounced dry periods. The desert biome is expansive but is at its north-eastern section is abruptly interrupted by arctic tundra.
    South of the central marker, the climate features warm summers and cool winters with a narrow annual temperature range. There is no dry season in this section, precipitation ranging from moderate to heavy, and the forests are temperate, especially in the Great Pine Barrens. In Amalia, Ursa Madeum and Biazo Isle, year round temperatures are consistently a humid 75°F and are dominated by precipitation, especially during monsoon season.
    Flora and Fauna
    Fracture has plant and animal life recognizable to most characters, such as: flowers, trees, dogs, horses, crabs, salmon, etc. and so on. In addition to this standard there are a number of animals and plants unique to Fracture . You can read more in the Fracture section of the Terran Creature Codex, the Terran Herbology Index and Herbalism 202.
    Note that users aren't limited to what's included in the present material and are free/encouraged to come up with plant and animal life as long as they adhere to the Mild Powers rules. Users can also make bestiary submissions if they want to formalize information about their creations and make them available for public use.
    Cities, Provinces, Territories
    The Terran Empire has ten megacities (originally 12, two have been lost to major ruin or a shift in politics) and numerous disparate villages, towns, baronies and lordships around the nation. The major cities are population dense and, thanks to magi-tech introduced with Odin Haze's sweeping regime, vary wildly in setting and tone.
    Outside of the major cities Fracture's wilderness is mystical, savage and untamed. It is not uncommon for the citizen or amateur adventurer striking out on their own between the cities to find death as to find fortune.
    Culture
    Terrenus Quest Index
    Terrenus Artifact List
    A citizen living within one of the megacities is literate, adequately versed in magical theory to make use of Terran magi-tech, is aware of common metaphysical phenomena (ghosts, rituals, telepathy, charms, hexes, etc), and is often capable of using magic as a result of scholarly pursuit and understanding.
    A native from one of the towns or villages is less likely to be literate and have empirical insight into arcana and magical phenomena. Instead, their knowledge of ability to use magic is a result of hereditary traditions and cultural myths. Their understanding of magic is intuitive rather than logical, making them more susceptible to charlatans and superstitious fears. But, with generations of experience springing from tradition, the villages produce more young people capable of wielding powerful, ancient magic.
    A Terran from any part of the nation tends to be physically robust due to Gaian religious practices and Terran diet. They have a special love for music, having considered music the universal language before they discovered mathematics and magic, and as a consequence also enjoy indulging lavishly in food and dance. Terrans celebrate not just their history, but their art throughout their ages as well. 
    Language
    Terric is the primary language of the Terran Empire. It is spoken in all megacities and most towns, though becomes rare in isolated villages and islands, where a pidgin form of modified Terric of varying names (Terril, Terrin, Terrie, etc) is usually the norm. Terric's primary dialects sounds like Spanish (users should treat this as a plot device and are not expected to learn how to write Spanish). Other dialects sound close to Romance-influenced language, such as Italian and French, but will also deviate into Germanic-influenced languages. 
    The rarest language in Fracture is Oldspeak, which is practiced by less than 1% of the population. The language requires line of sight and has no verbal components, instead communicating complete ideas between speaker and receiver. 
    Magic
    The Terran federal government has published a white paper on the Terran laws of magic, an authoritative perspective on the laws, principles and terminology of magic as they apply in Fracture. Also note that with events between the Wastelands and Shawnee loci during the Safeguard riots, magical availability in Fracture has been reduced everywhere except the new boundaries of the Shawnee itself. 
    Religion
    Gaianism: Quick Reference Guide
    Bible of Gaia
    The Gaian Church
    Gaianism is the Fracture's largest religion, constituting approximately 70% (down from 79%) of the total population. Gaianists consider nature, the universe, reality, magic and mathematics to be mortally comprehensible expressions of an inconceivable deific form.
    Gaianism advocates peace but not blind pacifism, leaving violence as a final solution and a mechanism for self-defense. The notable exception of this rule are Unnatural (any offspring of dark necromancy, such as vampires, zombies, liches, and occasionally Outsiders). Gaians attack Unnaturals on principle unless the Unnatural has taken pains to prove themselves righteous.
    The Cothic church is a small but growing religion, numbering approximately 5000 faithful. The Cothic religion was born in Coth, in the land between Dougton and Blairville. The Cothic church is a breakaway sect of mainstream Gaianism with worship of a new deity and populist ideals. The Cothic church seeks to underscore the weakness of any mortal being aspiring to power and instead advances taking up a permanent covenant with the Cothic god.
    Technology and Development
    Technology in Fracture is highly advanced, arguably some of the most advanced on the planet. Although this fact not immediately grasped by foreigners accustomed to development in the form of electrical and mechanical contrivances, the Terran Empire is the historical pioneer of magi-technology on Valucre, democratizing and automating a great deal of otherwise obscure and hidden knowledge. Terran tech is rooted in cores of abstract knowledge, interlacing philosophy, natural and conceptual science, and magical theory to pioneer the current paragon of magi-tech in Valucre. Fracture has sentient golems where another country might have "robots", rock satellites powered by runes and divination lattices, and crystal-based tactile computing systems instead of console based computers one might find elsewhere.
    In this sense "technology" is something learned and understood rather than picked up and used. For this reason education, especially developmental and postgraduate education, is of vital importance to the government. The newest generations of children show an adept knowledge of magical theory, a strong grasp of complex mathematical concepts and explore unconventional modes of thought. Like with telecom availability (see below), technology and magi-tech is the most advanced in the cities and attenuates as one goes into towns and then villages.
    Communications
    General Information
    Following the introduction and proliferation of magi-tech in Fracture, economic concerns shifted to prioritize three new markets: Energy, Information and Transportation. With the explosion of communication methods, primarily in the form of crystal storage devices and photonic relays, came the immediate concern over authentication (assurance of claimed identity), integrity (assurance data has not been altered), and confidentiality (assurance that none but specified parties can read a piece of data). 
    To those ends, Empire also pioneered the fields of encryption and hash algorithms, non-repudiation practices with digital signatures, and now with the advent of the Crook, the Public Encryption Cipher System (PECS) to allow civilians and citizens the same capabilities. Military technology and ciphers are known to be highly advanced, though private and public technology is catching up as corporations invest in the Information market. 
    Terran military-grade communication systems use quantum entangled encryption to prevent interception. Systems create entangled photons, beaming one half of each pair to the receiving system, and made secure because the "observer effect" will change the quantum state of the key pair. This would make any interception obvious and also would modify the key, making it useless. 
    A notable outlier demographic to the conventional communication methods in Fracture are those that are fluent in Oldspeak (.7% of the population), who are limited by line-of-sight but require no material channels for relay.
    OOC discussion about some of this technology
    Telecom Availability
    As with other gifts of the Empire, the most sophisticated technology and methods tend to exist in the megacities and attenuates as one radiates outwards towards the smaller, more numerous towns and villages. One notable exception are the twinned crystal relays created and distributed by the government to any signification population center. These allow for easy, long-distance audio communication between any parties with properly tuned crystal fragments and without the need for complicated training. These simple but effective radios have drastically reduced missing persons reports and increased cultural exchange. 
    Villages: Tribes and villages use magical means to communicate where possible. Examples of this include telepathy, oneiromancy (dream-walking), divinatory practices with water, smoke and mirrors, and shamanistic practices like reading tea leaves and animal guts or bones. Where these means are not available, visual communications rely heavily on beacons, smoke signals, and flags and audio communications rely on coded drumbeats and whistles. 
    Towns: Towns use copper and nth wires run over natural ley-lines, piggy-backing on their natural radiation to power the communications. With this method towns are able to communicate with equivalents to telegraphs and telephones. With the advent of Tia's faux-ton relay system, towns are now able to communicate with line-of-sight-limited laser communications at millisecond speeds. 
    Cities: Communication systems in the megacities make full use of magical theory and the technological capabilities of the nation. Three-dimensional holographic arrays (holo-arrays for short) are used primarily for relay on politics, economics, weather, and criminal activity. These relay systems make use of the military satellites and are capable of radiation communication (radio and microwave).
    The World Fair introduced three new pieces of technology which greatly influence communications in Fracture . The first is the LIES (Luminal Illusion Entertainment System), an immersive storytelling platform which is having a notable growth effect on the Entertainment sector. The second is the 'logical' Crook technology, which allows for the lossless interlinking of disparate crystal computing systems. This allows for the creation of ad-hoc, large-scale networks and what is being termed 'nebulous' storage. In tandem with The Storage Movement's efforts to digitize all written information, the Crook is widening information availability and increasing literacy. The third is the Faux-Ton, a materials transportation system invented by the Tia government which allows for the movement of objects at speeds many multiple that of the Lightning Rails, but limited by line-of-sight. 
    Transportation
    Transportation varies between cities depending on their magi-tech saturation and biomimicry level. Below are standards found across the nation.
    Animal Propulsion
    Often used for inter-city travel. Often ridden alone or attached to a cabby. The maintenance and upkeep of a living transport makes this a largely inefficient form of inner city travel, but because a large percentage of a given city's population are short-term travelers from abroad (international foreigners, inter-city adventurers, non-natives that live elsewhere on the nation, etc), animal propulsion is still fairly common. A lot of infrastructure continues to supports this form of travel. Horses (ground), Imperial Drae (aerial) and Rider Dragons (aerial) are common mounts.
    Mechanical Propulsion
    Often used for inner city travel. Automatic wagons with steam-engines produced in Tia and gyroscopically rotating spheres with a stable core produced by Gaian engineers in Hell's Gate are the two most common examples. In densely packed city infrastructure, powered zip-lines are occasionally employed between buildings. Sea-ships and air-ships are common for travel around and between nations. Submarines, which Empire invented and introduced into the world as a counter to the Siren menace, are predominantly used to the military but are becoming more popular among wealthier merchants.
    Magical Propulsion
    Inter-city travel used to be served primarily via Rail and Gate, until consequences of the civil war combined with supernatural phenomena to cause catastrophic damage to both and bring them offline for several years. Tia's Faux-ton system is growing in popularity but has limited application until more pylons are built, able to serve only Tia and Biazo Isle at the moment. 
    Lightning Rails - used to be magnetically propelled trains capable of traveling several hundred miles an hour. Currently offline. Tracks are used by slower, simpler, privately owned carts and trolleys for now.
    New - Rail services between Casper, Hell's Gate and Ignatz has been restored.
    Warp Gates - used to be stabilized portals and the only reliable method of teleportation in Fracture. Currently offline. 
    Faux-ton System - Tia patented technology that converts matter to energy to achieve subliminal travel speeds. Currently online but limited in presence. 
    Government and Politics
    Odin Haze is recognized as the Saint of Gaianism and King of the Terran Empire. Odin's rule is one of enlightened absolute monarchy, and his administration embraces logic and expertise as the driving force for fiats and policy.
    The arts, sciences, education and social welfare all flourish under Odin's regime, a near polar opposite to the dark ages of King Levas and Zengi.
    Though Odin Haze rules Fracture as a whole, the megacities under him are ruled over by individual regents that interpret federal law and administer local policy. Some are federally appointed, some are democratically elected, some are rulers by heritage; political states are a very fluid dynamic in the megacities. Each megacity also has a PeaceKeeper, a high-ranking military official to add balance and division of labor. There are also present in the massive Terran continent enclave baronies and kingdoms, which are independent governments. Examples include Taen, Predator's Keep, and Amalia. 
    The Gaian Academy is a national research university located on Deepview Island, an inland island and part of the Ponkapoag Lake Archipelago. It is the premier education center in the nation, some say even globally, and has also begun to establish itself as a competitive research facility.
    Law
    Author's note: I don't have a full legal system written out and likely never will because the complexity of that endeavor doesn't interest me. In terms of what's legal reference real bodies of law for basics, so imagine that things like theft, assault, perjury, slavery, murder and so on are illegal. Each city has a local police force to operate within its limits and the military employs federal investigators who are able to enforce law anywhere in the nation.

    The Safeguard Act - Prohibits the use of unlicensed magic in specific cities.
    In each city there's a congress, which is made up of majority and minority leaders from each city. The majority leader is the elected official of a city (usually but not always), and the minority leader is usually the one who lost the elections but still represents a significant portion of the electorate. The king decides on issues which affect everyone. If regents are in conflict about any change, the king is the final word and can supersede any motion. The king also appoints chief of staff for various departments, such as the head of the military, the bureau of science, internal investigations, as well as determines who makes up the supreme court out of nominees put forward by the congress. 
    In criminal investigations Empire's law enforcement makes use of various forms of divination, in particular retrocognition and psychometry, as well as Gaian candles of truth and clergy to compel honesty. Each megacity has at least one maximum security prison to house the most dangerous local criminals, such as terrorists, political prisoners, the excessively violent or those with gang affiliations.
    With Empire penology skewing towards rehabilitation rather than deterrence or retribution and treating most criminal offenses as mental health issues, the megacities also have a larger distribution of minimum security prisons for non-violent offenders. Minimum security prisons populate the city at the ratio of 1:15 compared to libraries, hospitals, and schools.
    Fracture also has one super-max prison in the Dead Peaks, aptly titled the Dead Peaks Prison. The Dead Peaks Prison is the most secure level of custody in the nation, purpose-built towards providing long term, segregated housing for inmates classified as posing a threat to national health (a classification that designates one a danger to people or life rather than to information or infrastructure) or international security risks. Recently the Dead Peaks Prison has gone offline with the loci event that saw the Shawnee Glacier covering most of the Wasteland.
    Empire exercises capital punishment nationwide for criminals that pose an unmanageable threat or show no potential for reform.
    Military
    Terran Military (Overview; Personnel; Assignments)
    Terran Military is made up of ~2% of the population (approximately 6 million).
    Odin Haze, as King of the Terran Empire, is also its Commander-in-Chief, exercising total authority over the military. Edward Brown (5-star General and PeaceKeeper handler) is Odin's right hand man and adviser, the highest military authority other than the King himself. He is involved in the day-to-day responsibilities of maintaining the military, government, and nation.
    The complex that stores and relays information, innovates military technology and strategy, and is responsible for national security is known as Central. Despite its name Central has no central location. It has a manifold presence throughout the nation, and those few offices that are permanently stationed and open to the public are often underground.
    Note that this enigmatic and transient nature applies to the most secure aspects of Central and do not apply to the various local agencies found in the cities such as Immigration, Sanitation, Education, local Law enforcement, and so on. The path to citizenship in Empire requires a 2 year service in the military (or ranking to Sergeant) and bestows the ability to vote for officials and own and pass down land.
    Foreign Relations
    In regards to foreign policy Empire is an autarky and practices a modified form of isolationism, declining to enter into alliances and international agreements, and generally attempting to make their economy as self-reliant as possible. Where Empire deviates from traditional isolationism is in their support of free trade, travel, and certain, limited, trade agreements with other kingdoms and nations.
    You can read more about Empire's political relations in Terran Military - Allies and Enemies.
    Economy
    A large part of Empire's internal economy is dungeon based, with adventurers taking on the high-risk work of crawling dungeons for the high reward of prized cultural artifacts and items of power; although this has led to some legal conflicts regarding ownership of artifacts, these disputes are generally handled in the courts after the adventurer has been paid for his or her legal reclamation efforts. Some towns and cities pivot around this, specializing in crafted weaponry, armor, and healing potions. Others are known to offer tours through cleared levels of dungeons and vaults for tourists.
    Because the task of increasing the nation's food security was the first and foremost priority of the Haze regime, understanding that one cannot create if one is starving, Empire focused its considerable resources on agronomy and crafted several techniques and tools for high-yield farming. This has greatly increased Empire's ability to self-sustain without foreign aid even when its economy falls.
    Empire exports a great deal of utility (i.e. non-combat) magi-tech and magical and scientific knowledge to other countries, and supplements its national income with submarine exploration of natural resources throughout the large tracts of Valucre which are underwater.
    Empire's economic and market systems revolve around precious metals. Crystals and other minerals are valuable as spell components but are not fungible.
    Copper, silver, gold, and platinum are the most common precious metals traded and used for purchase. Value is determined by weight and type, not by design or origin, allowing travelers and immigrants from other countries to more easily integrate.
    1 oz of Tin = .25 USD 1 oz of Copper = 2 USD 1 oz of Silver = 10 USD 1 oz of Gold = 50 USD 1 oz of Platinum = 100 USD 1 oz of Rhodium = 500 USD. Each metal currency comes in fractions as well, such as half-ounce and quarter-ounce coins. These prices are not an accurate reflection of real world costs.
    You can read more about special metals and materials in the Terran Materials List.
    Terran population demographics
    Teran religion demographics
    History
    Condensed Terran Timeline
    Major Historical Periods
    These events are from most recent to oldest.
     
  21. Like
    supernal got a reaction from sadiebubs for a article, Character Creation Guide   
    A introduction to character creation in roleplay
    I've said this before and it's worth repeating: character sheets are completely optional. If you want to post a sheet anyway you can do so in User Lore. We have character sheet templates available there for public use.
    To get your day to day roleplay fix here on Valucre, all you need is a character in mind and the ability to play them with some consistency, unless inconsistency is a part of their character (see: mental instability and unreliable narrators).
    Still, sheets are useful for keeping track of information. This is especially true if you have many characters, and is also useful for conveying information to your partners  you may not feel like repeating every time you start a new thread (if I have to describe this *******'s eyes one more time, I swear!).
    The consequent sections are in no particular order. Experiment with doing the last part first or starting in the middle, and you'll be surprised at what jumps out at you. You also don't need to write a paper for each section. Just put some thought into each section for your character, then you can keep that in mind or fill out a character sheet if you please.
    I'll occasionally refer to "breaking" your "character image". Take this to essentially mean challenging the suspension of disbelief that we as writers adopt in a fantasy roleplay environment.
    A character's physical appearance - what to convey
    I tend not to get hung up on names for my roleplay characters because I believe in the "a rose by any other name" quote, but that's just me. If your RP character originates in Valucre (which is optional) it'll definitely make your character a more concrete addition to fit into the place that he or she originates from, and some authors get a kick out of having their character names be indicative of their personality or fate.
    Some basics to think about are what other characters see about your character upon first sight. Eye, hair and skin color. Scars, tattoos, piercings. What characteristics make sense for the location of your roleplay? Think about the multiple dimensions that hygiene adds to appearance. Your character has black hair – is the hair smooth? Shiny? Silky? Greasy? Stringy? Are their teeth straight? Yellow? Fake? What do they smell like? What do they sound like?
    What's your character's build? Look up images of people that have the same basic height and weight of your character so you can get an idea of their silhouette and stature. If you play a character that is large and imposing, indicating an inappropriate height and weight will break your character image.
    Think about attire. This is influenced by position, profession and personality. A blacksmith won't always be walking down the street with their apron and a hammer on their back. An assassin can be dressed in anything from beggar's clothes to a noble's surcoat. A warrior might walk with a limp to hide the clank of armor underneath his cloak. Any of these characters might make it a point to keep a daisy in their lapel.
    You may also revisit Physical Appearance after thinking about Personality and History, as they individually and together have an influence on Appearance. A mousy bookworm isn't likely to be tanned and muscular, and a belligerent orphan in an abusive institution is likely to have scars or missing teeth.
    Personality in roleplay - traits and motivations
    There are hundreds of lists and dozens of books written on personality types and character traits. For the sake of simplicity we'll go with the five personality traits that most modern psychologists accept as being the basis for all other personality traits.
    OCEAN, or Openness to experience, Conscientiousness, Extraversion, Agreeableness, Neuroticism. The (modified) explanation for OCEAN provided below is an excerpt from a Wikipedia Article:
    Openness to experience: (inventive/curious vs. consistent/cautious). Appreciation for art, unusual ideas, and variety of experience. Openness is described as the extent to which a person is imaginative or independent, and depicts a personal preference for a variety of activities over a strict routine.
    Conscientiousness: (efficient/organized vs. easy-going/careless). A tendency to be organized and dependable, show self-discipline, act dutifully, aim for achievement, and prefer planned rather than spontaneous behavior.
    Extraversion: (outgoing/energetic vs. solitary/reserved). Energy, positive emotions, surgency, assertiveness, sociability and the tendency to seek stimulation in the company of others, and talkativeness.
    Agreeableness: (friendly/compassionate vs. analytical/detached). A tendency to be compassionate and cooperative rather than suspicious and antagonistic towards others. It is also a measure of one's trusting and helpful nature, and whether a person is generally well tempered or not.
    Neuroticism: (sensitive/nervous vs. secure/confident). The tendency to experience unpleasant emotions easily, such as anger, anxiety, depression, and vulnerability. Neuroticism also refers to the degree of emotional stability and impulse control.
    Note that these categories are not meant to compete with one another, that each category represents a spectrum on which a character can land, and that being at the extreme of either end is unbalanced (which can make for very interesting characters, but don't try to "score high" in each category either).
    Consider how your roleplay character fulfills each category and where on the range they fall.
    Extraversion can range from "I'm the life of the party" to "I'm quiet around strangers". Agreeableness can range from" I have a soft heart" to "I'm not interested in other people's problems".
    Some basics of personality to think about are fears, prejudices, morals and motivations. All of these paint and influence personality, but motivations are the traits that tend to be most obvious to other characters.
    Sample Motivations
    Achievement and Acquisition: A desire to overcome obstacles, to acquire recognition or fame, or to just be the best. Adventure: To explore everything, discovery mysteries, blaze new trails. Chaos: To disrupt social order, sew confusion, destroy buildings and extinguish life. Education: To gain knowledge or information, to train under prestigious teachers or be a teacher themselves. Nobility: For a higher purpose, order, religion, etc. Peace: To bring harmony to the world and protect the helpless. Recreation: To have fun and enjoy life. Power: To gain material wealth and land, to accrue power, to control others. Character history
    I've seen Character Histories that were a few sentences long, and others that were a separate thread and multiple posts long. There's a lot you could choose to say about a character in this section and how much to include is, as always, a matter of personal preference.
    I suggest including only what is relevant to your character's current roleplay. Regardless of age, your character's childhood can be very crucial to your character's personality and motivations and their current story. But if your character's current story is about avenging their lover's death, their childhood is very likely of no consequence at all.
    What shaped your character's personality or outlook of the world? What history/profession/interest explains your character's abilities, attire, and equipment? Have they met any influential people or participated in historically important events? Why is your character where they are now, doing what they're doing?
    Abilities and equipment in roleplay - find the balance and play the game
    Unless closely tied into Personality and History, I suggest making Abilities and Equipment the last section you focus on. It's a common trend among RPers to see a cool weapon or power on a video game or show/anime. I'm here to say, don't fall for the trap! Valucre is about you being free to write whatever moves you and inspiration comes from all angles, but in my experience these types of "shake and bake" characters are not very fulfilling and tend to evaporate quickly.
    You want things about your roleplay character to make sense, and if they don't, to be able to explain why that is. Abilities and powers should be relevant to your character's history. A mermaid that can talk to fish and manipulate water makes more sense than a mermaid that periodically breathes fire – the latter doesn't have to be impossible but the idea is a non sequitur, it does not "follow", and if you can't explain why your aquatic creature is capable (or cursed? compelled?), you break your character's image.
    In terms of cost, weight, and amount, is your character's equipment sensible?? How much growth are you allowing your character, and whether a little or a lot, is it this deliberate? How much of your character's abilities and equipment is created in the narrative (the sheet, the background), and how much is received through actual content written on the site and interaction with the community?
  22. Superlike!
    supernal got a reaction from Lawman for a article, Fracture Landing Page   
    Terran Calendar: The current year is 30 AO = 598 WTA. All new threads happen during the current year unless otherwise stated by the creator. 

    Setting elements cannot be ignored or manipulated
    City maps are guides and not authoritative sources
    ✪ = City | ✦ = Landmark | ✿ = Independent territory
    ✪ Ignatz
    ✪ Casper (Primary sea port)
    ✪ Martial Town
    ✪ Last Chance (Secondary sea port)
    ✪ Hell's Gate (Primary sky Port)
    ✦ Langley Keep
    ✪ Blairville (Secondary sky port) ✦ Biazo Isle | Bi'le'ah | ✪ Aspyn
    ✦ Weland Gorge; Day River
    ✪ Dougton
    ✦ Scudder Forests
    ✿ Selemath
    ✦ Hills of Noddendody
    ✦ Blue Hills
    ✦ Moonwood ✦ Ponkapoag Lake | Gaian Academy; Haunted Glen
    ✦ Timber Creek
    ✦ Great Pine Barrens | No Man's Land; Witch's Cave; Herbie's Bed; Peaceful Woods
    ✦ Forgotten Wood
    ✦ Black Ridge
    ✦ Hidden Valley
    ✦ Dark Forest | The Cedars
    ✦ Forbidding Hills
    ✦ Shawnee Glacier
    ✦ The Wastelands | Badlands; High Desert; Dead Peaks
    ✦ Blaurg Mountain
    ✦ Coconino Marsh | Labyrinth Forest; Coconino Creek
    ✦ Hills of Lost Hearts ✦ Barnstable Coast
    ✦ Southern Sea
    ✿ Predator's Keep
    ✿ Amalia
    ✿ Yh'mi
    ✿ Taen | Ursa Madeum
    ✿ Norkotia
    ✿ Absalom | Béhods
    ✿ Chesterfield | Aligoria
    ✿ Nesthome | Anima
    ✿ Everrun Announcements
    Newer information at the top; keep up with the latest in the Updates thread.
    Terrenus rename to Fracture.
    During the events of Civil War - Phase 3, a number of those factions which established themselves in the Wilds have grown in size and successfully established sovereignty over their lands. Notable stewards of their respective regions are Chesterfield and COTH
    Breaking news from the Symposium Against Doom - body snatchers and volatile loci
    Visible to the entire continent, the sun burns green for ten minutes. 
    During the events of the Civil War - Phase 2, a number of different factions have established themselves in the greater Wilds of Fracture and are poised to become enclaves with sovereign leadership. This has added new territories to the map: Aligoria, Chesterfield, Everrun, COTH, Temple City, Nesthome, Anima.
    Due to the events of the Civil War - Phase 1, transportation across the nation of Fracture has been crippled and magical availability has been concentrated in the Shawnee Wastelands. 
    Geography
    Located in the north-east of planet Valucre, Fracture is approximately twice the size of the North American continent and has a citizen population of approximately 300,000,000 (three-hundred million) as of 24 AO.
    Climate
    A dense arcanosphere has resulted in sections of unpredictable climate and terrain. The fluctuating levels of magic also lead to random side effects on plant and animal life, and has been noted to render gunpowder unreliable in greater Fracture (this is meant to prompt creative alternatives to basic firearms). 
    The tip of Ponkapoag Lake will be used as the central marker for description purposes. The area enveloping Ponkapoag Lake and Coconino Marsh is characterized by warm, dry summers which average 66°F with low precipitation and cool, wet winters which average 25°F and moderate precipitation. Evergreen and deciduous trees, fig, walnut and citrus trees, and bay rosemary herbs thrive in the area.
    North of the central marker the weather increases sharply in temperature and vegetation becomes sparse as grassland and forest biomes turn into desert, which average around 100°F with pronounced dry periods. The desert biome is expansive but is at its north-eastern section is abruptly interrupted by arctic tundra.
    South of the central marker, the climate features warm summers and cool winters with a narrow annual temperature range. There is no dry season in this section, precipitation ranging from moderate to heavy, and the forests are temperate, especially in the Great Pine Barrens. In Amalia, Ursa Madeum and Biazo Isle, year round temperatures are consistently a humid 75°F and are dominated by precipitation, especially during monsoon season.
    Flora and Fauna
    Fracture has plant and animal life recognizable to most characters, such as: flowers, trees, dogs, horses, crabs, salmon, etc. and so on. In addition to this standard there are a number of animals and plants unique to Fracture . You can read more in the Fracture section of the Terran Creature Codex, the Terran Herbology Index and Herbalism 202.
    Note that users aren't limited to what's included in the present material and are free/encouraged to come up with plant and animal life as long as they adhere to the Mild Powers rules. Users can also make bestiary submissions if they want to formalize information about their creations and make them available for public use.
    Cities, Provinces, Territories
    The Terran Empire has ten megacities (originally 12, two have been lost to major ruin or a shift in politics) and numerous disparate villages, towns, baronies and lordships around the nation. The major cities are population dense and, thanks to magi-tech introduced with Odin Haze's sweeping regime, vary wildly in setting and tone.
    Outside of the major cities Fracture's wilderness is mystical, savage and untamed. It is not uncommon for the citizen or amateur adventurer striking out on their own between the cities to find death as to find fortune.
    Culture
    Terrenus Quest Index
    Terrenus Artifact List
    A citizen living within one of the megacities is literate, adequately versed in magical theory to make use of Terran magi-tech, is aware of common metaphysical phenomena (ghosts, rituals, telepathy, charms, hexes, etc), and is often capable of using magic as a result of scholarly pursuit and understanding.
    A native from one of the towns or villages is less likely to be literate and have empirical insight into arcana and magical phenomena. Instead, their knowledge of ability to use magic is a result of hereditary traditions and cultural myths. Their understanding of magic is intuitive rather than logical, making them more susceptible to charlatans and superstitious fears. But, with generations of experience springing from tradition, the villages produce more young people capable of wielding powerful, ancient magic.
    A Terran from any part of the nation tends to be physically robust due to Gaian religious practices and Terran diet. They have a special love for music, having considered music the universal language before they discovered mathematics and magic, and as a consequence also enjoy indulging lavishly in food and dance. Terrans celebrate not just their history, but their art throughout their ages as well. 
    Language
    Terric is the primary language of the Terran Empire. It is spoken in all megacities and most towns, though becomes rare in isolated villages and islands, where a pidgin form of modified Terric of varying names (Terril, Terrin, Terrie, etc) is usually the norm. Terric's primary dialects sounds like Spanish (users should treat this as a plot device and are not expected to learn how to write Spanish). Other dialects sound close to Romance-influenced language, such as Italian and French, but will also deviate into Germanic-influenced languages. 
    The rarest language in Fracture is Oldspeak, which is practiced by less than 1% of the population. The language requires line of sight and has no verbal components, instead communicating complete ideas between speaker and receiver. 
    Magic
    The Terran federal government has published a white paper on the Terran laws of magic, an authoritative perspective on the laws, principles and terminology of magic as they apply in Fracture. Also note that with events between the Wastelands and Shawnee loci during the Safeguard riots, magical availability in Fracture has been reduced everywhere except the new boundaries of the Shawnee itself. 
    Religion
    Gaianism: Quick Reference Guide
    Bible of Gaia
    The Gaian Church
    Gaianism is the Fracture's largest religion, constituting approximately 70% (down from 79%) of the total population. Gaianists consider nature, the universe, reality, magic and mathematics to be mortally comprehensible expressions of an inconceivable deific form.
    Gaianism advocates peace but not blind pacifism, leaving violence as a final solution and a mechanism for self-defense. The notable exception of this rule are Unnatural (any offspring of dark necromancy, such as vampires, zombies, liches, and occasionally Outsiders). Gaians attack Unnaturals on principle unless the Unnatural has taken pains to prove themselves righteous.
    The Cothic church is a small but growing religion, numbering approximately 5000 faithful. The Cothic religion was born in Coth, in the land between Dougton and Blairville. The Cothic church is a breakaway sect of mainstream Gaianism with worship of a new deity and populist ideals. The Cothic church seeks to underscore the weakness of any mortal being aspiring to power and instead advances taking up a permanent covenant with the Cothic god.
    Technology and Development
    Technology in Fracture is highly advanced, arguably some of the most advanced on the planet. Although this fact not immediately grasped by foreigners accustomed to development in the form of electrical and mechanical contrivances, the Terran Empire is the historical pioneer of magi-technology on Valucre, democratizing and automating a great deal of otherwise obscure and hidden knowledge. Terran tech is rooted in cores of abstract knowledge, interlacing philosophy, natural and conceptual science, and magical theory to pioneer the current paragon of magi-tech in Valucre. Fracture has sentient golems where another country might have "robots", rock satellites powered by runes and divination lattices, and crystal-based tactile computing systems instead of console based computers one might find elsewhere.
    In this sense "technology" is something learned and understood rather than picked up and used. For this reason education, especially developmental and postgraduate education, is of vital importance to the government. The newest generations of children show an adept knowledge of magical theory, a strong grasp of complex mathematical concepts and explore unconventional modes of thought. Like with telecom availability (see below), technology and magi-tech is the most advanced in the cities and attenuates as one goes into towns and then villages.
    Communications
    General Information
    Following the introduction and proliferation of magi-tech in Fracture, economic concerns shifted to prioritize three new markets: Energy, Information and Transportation. With the explosion of communication methods, primarily in the form of crystal storage devices and photonic relays, came the immediate concern over authentication (assurance of claimed identity), integrity (assurance data has not been altered), and confidentiality (assurance that none but specified parties can read a piece of data). 
    To those ends, Empire also pioneered the fields of encryption and hash algorithms, non-repudiation practices with digital signatures, and now with the advent of the Crook, the Public Encryption Cipher System (PECS) to allow civilians and citizens the same capabilities. Military technology and ciphers are known to be highly advanced, though private and public technology is catching up as corporations invest in the Information market. 
    Terran military-grade communication systems use quantum entangled encryption to prevent interception. Systems create entangled photons, beaming one half of each pair to the receiving system, and made secure because the "observer effect" will change the quantum state of the key pair. This would make any interception obvious and also would modify the key, making it useless. 
    A notable outlier demographic to the conventional communication methods in Fracture are those that are fluent in Oldspeak (.7% of the population), who are limited by line-of-sight but require no material channels for relay.
    OOC discussion about some of this technology
    Telecom Availability
    As with other gifts of the Empire, the most sophisticated technology and methods tend to exist in the megacities and attenuates as one radiates outwards towards the smaller, more numerous towns and villages. One notable exception are the twinned crystal relays created and distributed by the government to any signification population center. These allow for easy, long-distance audio communication between any parties with properly tuned crystal fragments and without the need for complicated training. These simple but effective radios have drastically reduced missing persons reports and increased cultural exchange. 
    Villages: Tribes and villages use magical means to communicate where possible. Examples of this include telepathy, oneiromancy (dream-walking), divinatory practices with water, smoke and mirrors, and shamanistic practices like reading tea leaves and animal guts or bones. Where these means are not available, visual communications rely heavily on beacons, smoke signals, and flags and audio communications rely on coded drumbeats and whistles. 
    Towns: Towns use copper and nth wires run over natural ley-lines, piggy-backing on their natural radiation to power the communications. With this method towns are able to communicate with equivalents to telegraphs and telephones. With the advent of Tia's faux-ton relay system, towns are now able to communicate with line-of-sight-limited laser communications at millisecond speeds. 
    Cities: Communication systems in the megacities make full use of magical theory and the technological capabilities of the nation. Three-dimensional holographic arrays (holo-arrays for short) are used primarily for relay on politics, economics, weather, and criminal activity. These relay systems make use of the military satellites and are capable of radiation communication (radio and microwave).
    The World Fair introduced three new pieces of technology which greatly influence communications in Fracture . The first is the LIES (Luminal Illusion Entertainment System), an immersive storytelling platform which is having a notable growth effect on the Entertainment sector. The second is the 'logical' Crook technology, which allows for the lossless interlinking of disparate crystal computing systems. This allows for the creation of ad-hoc, large-scale networks and what is being termed 'nebulous' storage. In tandem with The Storage Movement's efforts to digitize all written information, the Crook is widening information availability and increasing literacy. The third is the Faux-Ton, a materials transportation system invented by the Tia government which allows for the movement of objects at speeds many multiple that of the Lightning Rails, but limited by line-of-sight. 
    Transportation
    Transportation varies between cities depending on their magi-tech saturation and biomimicry level. Below are standards found across the nation.
    Animal Propulsion
    Often used for inter-city travel. Often ridden alone or attached to a cabby. The maintenance and upkeep of a living transport makes this a largely inefficient form of inner city travel, but because a large percentage of a given city's population are short-term travelers from abroad (international foreigners, inter-city adventurers, non-natives that live elsewhere on the nation, etc), animal propulsion is still fairly common. A lot of infrastructure continues to supports this form of travel. Horses (ground), Imperial Drae (aerial) and Rider Dragons (aerial) are common mounts.
    Mechanical Propulsion
    Often used for inner city travel. Automatic wagons with steam-engines produced in Tia and gyroscopically rotating spheres with a stable core produced by Gaian engineers in Hell's Gate are the two most common examples. In densely packed city infrastructure, powered zip-lines are occasionally employed between buildings. Sea-ships and air-ships are common for travel around and between nations. Submarines, which Empire invented and introduced into the world as a counter to the Siren menace, are predominantly used to the military but are becoming more popular among wealthier merchants.
    Magical Propulsion
    Inter-city travel used to be served primarily via Rail and Gate, until consequences of the civil war combined with supernatural phenomena to cause catastrophic damage to both and bring them offline for several years. Tia's Faux-ton system is growing in popularity but has limited application until more pylons are built, able to serve only Tia and Biazo Isle at the moment. 
    Lightning Rails - used to be magnetically propelled trains capable of traveling several hundred miles an hour. Currently offline. Tracks are used by slower, simpler, privately owned carts and trolleys for now.
    New - Rail services between Casper, Hell's Gate and Ignatz has been restored.
    Warp Gates - used to be stabilized portals and the only reliable method of teleportation in Fracture. Currently offline. 
    Faux-ton System - Tia patented technology that converts matter to energy to achieve subliminal travel speeds. Currently online but limited in presence. 
    Government and Politics
    Odin Haze is recognized as the Saint of Gaianism and King of the Terran Empire. Odin's rule is one of enlightened absolute monarchy, and his administration embraces logic and expertise as the driving force for fiats and policy.
    The arts, sciences, education and social welfare all flourish under Odin's regime, a near polar opposite to the dark ages of King Levas and Zengi.
    Though Odin Haze rules Fracture as a whole, the megacities under him are ruled over by individual regents that interpret federal law and administer local policy. Some are federally appointed, some are democratically elected, some are rulers by heritage; political states are a very fluid dynamic in the megacities. Each megacity also has a PeaceKeeper, a high-ranking military official to add balance and division of labor. There are also present in the massive Terran continent enclave baronies and kingdoms, which are independent governments. Examples include Taen, Predator's Keep, and Amalia. 
    The Gaian Academy is a national research university located on Deepview Island, an inland island and part of the Ponkapoag Lake Archipelago. It is the premier education center in the nation, some say even globally, and has also begun to establish itself as a competitive research facility.
    Law
    Author's note: I don't have a full legal system written out and likely never will because the complexity of that endeavor doesn't interest me. In terms of what's legal reference real bodies of law for basics, so imagine that things like theft, assault, perjury, slavery, murder and so on are illegal. Each city has a local police force to operate within its limits and the military employs federal investigators who are able to enforce law anywhere in the nation.

    The Safeguard Act - Prohibits the use of unlicensed magic in specific cities.
    In each city there's a congress, which is made up of majority and minority leaders from each city. The majority leader is the elected official of a city (usually but not always), and the minority leader is usually the one who lost the elections but still represents a significant portion of the electorate. The king decides on issues which affect everyone. If regents are in conflict about any change, the king is the final word and can supersede any motion. The king also appoints chief of staff for various departments, such as the head of the military, the bureau of science, internal investigations, as well as determines who makes up the supreme court out of nominees put forward by the congress. 
    In criminal investigations Empire's law enforcement makes use of various forms of divination, in particular retrocognition and psychometry, as well as Gaian candles of truth and clergy to compel honesty. Each megacity has at least one maximum security prison to house the most dangerous local criminals, such as terrorists, political prisoners, the excessively violent or those with gang affiliations.
    With Empire penology skewing towards rehabilitation rather than deterrence or retribution and treating most criminal offenses as mental health issues, the megacities also have a larger distribution of minimum security prisons for non-violent offenders. Minimum security prisons populate the city at the ratio of 1:15 compared to libraries, hospitals, and schools.
    Fracture also has one super-max prison in the Dead Peaks, aptly titled the Dead Peaks Prison. The Dead Peaks Prison is the most secure level of custody in the nation, purpose-built towards providing long term, segregated housing for inmates classified as posing a threat to national health (a classification that designates one a danger to people or life rather than to information or infrastructure) or international security risks. Recently the Dead Peaks Prison has gone offline with the loci event that saw the Shawnee Glacier covering most of the Wasteland.
    Empire exercises capital punishment nationwide for criminals that pose an unmanageable threat or show no potential for reform.
    Military
    Terran Military (Overview; Personnel; Assignments)
    Terran Military is made up of ~2% of the population (approximately 6 million).
    Odin Haze, as King of the Terran Empire, is also its Commander-in-Chief, exercising total authority over the military. Edward Brown (5-star General and PeaceKeeper handler) is Odin's right hand man and adviser, the highest military authority other than the King himself. He is involved in the day-to-day responsibilities of maintaining the military, government, and nation.
    The complex that stores and relays information, innovates military technology and strategy, and is responsible for national security is known as Central. Despite its name Central has no central location. It has a manifold presence throughout the nation, and those few offices that are permanently stationed and open to the public are often underground.
    Note that this enigmatic and transient nature applies to the most secure aspects of Central and do not apply to the various local agencies found in the cities such as Immigration, Sanitation, Education, local Law enforcement, and so on. The path to citizenship in Empire requires a 2 year service in the military (or ranking to Sergeant) and bestows the ability to vote for officials and own and pass down land.
    Foreign Relations
    In regards to foreign policy Empire is an autarky and practices a modified form of isolationism, declining to enter into alliances and international agreements, and generally attempting to make their economy as self-reliant as possible. Where Empire deviates from traditional isolationism is in their support of free trade, travel, and certain, limited, trade agreements with other kingdoms and nations.
    You can read more about Empire's political relations in Terran Military - Allies and Enemies.
    Economy
    A large part of Empire's internal economy is dungeon based, with adventurers taking on the high-risk work of crawling dungeons for the high reward of prized cultural artifacts and items of power; although this has led to some legal conflicts regarding ownership of artifacts, these disputes are generally handled in the courts after the adventurer has been paid for his or her legal reclamation efforts. Some towns and cities pivot around this, specializing in crafted weaponry, armor, and healing potions. Others are known to offer tours through cleared levels of dungeons and vaults for tourists.
    Because the task of increasing the nation's food security was the first and foremost priority of the Haze regime, understanding that one cannot create if one is starving, Empire focused its considerable resources on agronomy and crafted several techniques and tools for high-yield farming. This has greatly increased Empire's ability to self-sustain without foreign aid even when its economy falls.
    Empire exports a great deal of utility (i.e. non-combat) magi-tech and magical and scientific knowledge to other countries, and supplements its national income with submarine exploration of natural resources throughout the large tracts of Valucre which are underwater.
    Empire's economic and market systems revolve around precious metals. Crystals and other minerals are valuable as spell components but are not fungible.
    Copper, silver, gold, and platinum are the most common precious metals traded and used for purchase. Value is determined by weight and type, not by design or origin, allowing travelers and immigrants from other countries to more easily integrate.
    1 oz of Tin = .25 USD 1 oz of Copper = 2 USD 1 oz of Silver = 10 USD 1 oz of Gold = 50 USD 1 oz of Platinum = 100 USD 1 oz of Rhodium = 500 USD. Each metal currency comes in fractions as well, such as half-ounce and quarter-ounce coins. These prices are not an accurate reflection of real world costs.
    You can read more about special metals and materials in the Terran Materials List.
    Terran population demographics
    Teran religion demographics
    History
    Condensed Terran Timeline
    Major Historical Periods
    These events are from most recent to oldest.
     
  23. Like
    supernal got a reaction from Akako Akari for a article, Writing - Tips and Resources   
    Valucre is an open site that does not limit the manner in which our members can write, but our community does encourage growth. This is sometimes misconstrued to mean we want long posts, which is not the case. Often times detailed posts are just a side effect of general improvement.
    Roleplay and Writing: A few thoughts from supernal Some writers mourn a lack of detail in their own writing when they come to Valucre's play-by-post style, especially those that are transitioning from a chat environment or extended hiatus. Coming to a site where paragraphs are the norm can be intimidating.
    The first thing to remember is that quality trumps quantity. The length of a post is not the determining factor to how good or bad it is. The second thing to remember is that on a forum setting, even though Valucre is active, you can take your time. Don't write in a rush, take your time to experiment with your writing, and revise your posts so as to refine them. Giving yourself time for a second draft of a post will let you refine your writing.
    Remember, although roleplaying is a game and a hobby for most of us, the main (not only) vehicle by which we play this game is writing. The more you develop your writing, the better at communicating your ideas you become, the more impactful and substantial the game. Becoming better at writing can help you in many areas in life, but we'll save that for a later time.
    In regards to detail, there are a few elements you can consider. A character's thoughts and emotions have always proved to be a deep well that a writer can draw from. What does your character think, what do they feel, and how does that express itself in the character? Are they suspicious? If so, why? If so, how does this change the way they behave or react?
    Pay attention to your surroundings. Interact and engage. This is not to say that in every post you make you have to climb a tree or dip a hand in the river, but things like weather, the time of day, the setting itself (walking from one end of town to the other, or from town to forest) are all variables that change.
    Pay attention to your character while they speak, and to their orientation in regards to other characters and objects. Having your character pace about the room, or prepare dinner, or sketch a drawing, or sharpen his knife gives them a sense of being, of being more than a disembodied voice. Your character is alive, and it helps to convey them as such.
    Repetition is a double-edge sword. Remarking on your character's blue eyes five times in one post is superfluous, but mentioning it only once throughout a thread makes it an easily forgettable detail. Switching words out with a synonym is a poor habit. Noting that your character has blue eyes, then aqua eyes, then azure eyes, is not the same as reinforcing the detail through expression ('eyes the shade of the ocean at night' or 'as if some portion of the light blue sky took residence in her eyes').
    Tips Proactive vs Reactive
    As writers in a collaborative environment, it is very easy to fall into the habit of simply reacting rather than writing in a manner that advances the plot. This is especially true in group settings. Reactive writing contributes little to the story, even if it is well written, usually by way of being little more than a summary of previous posts coupled with little more than your character's reactions.
    Proactive writing advances. You're still reacting, but in a way that moves the thread forward even by a single step. It means asking a question, engaging in an action, giving depth to the setting or granting significance to an item, impacting the story in a way that takes into account what came before but also establishes something for the posts that come after. Don't be afraid to get creative.
    Length of Post
    Length is largely irrelevant, but not completely. The forum writer should take pains to avoid "one-lining" in a play-by-post setting. This does not mean to take the extreme position that all of your posts need to be a thousand words long, but that you should provide enough content in your post that other players in the thread have something of substance to respond to. That said, there are certainly situations where a few sentences will suffice, but you should nonetheless take care not to allow "shake-n-bake" writing to become a habit. Without the atmosphere generated by some effort in writing on your part, your partners are liable to misinterpret events or simply lose interest.
    On the other side of this, although writing at its core is meant to be an expression of creativity, you should take care to avoid "fluff" or "purple prose". By all means embellish, but if you write five paragraphs and four of them are describing a field or a flower, that is excessive.
    Please note that this in no way advocates excessively complicated writing.
    Vocabulary and Diction
    Simple Writing Commandments
    Use active voice. Use passive voice only to obscure the subject. Be measured and precise: choose your words carefully. Structure your writing so that each paragraph or section has a unified focus. Keep paragraphs "bite-sized''. Hyphenate correctly. Use an appropriate and consistent level of formality. Eliminate unnecessary words. Prefer simple and direct constructs to more complex ones. Use "which" and "that" correctly. Don't rely on fluff words like very or extremely to strengthen your points. In the words of the immortal Mark Twain (again): Substitute "damn" every time you're inclined to write "very"; your editor will delete it and the writing will be just as it should be. Use a spell-checker. Avoid redundancy. Source: http://www.cs.duke.edu/~chase/commandments.html
    Description Modified excerpt from Word Painting: A Guide to Writing More Descriptively by Rebecca McClanahan:
    Perhaps the best way to fully define description is by considering what it is not.
    Description is not "all that flowery stuff". It isn't merely embellishment, something we stitch to the top of our writing to make it more presentable. Description doesn't always mean detailing how something looks. One of the best descriptions I've ever read was written by a blind child. Evocative and memorable description is rooted not only in visual detail but in the smells, tastes, textures and sounds of our world. Description doesn't begin on the page. It begins in the eye and ear and mouth and nose and hand of the beholder. Writing descriptively doesn't always mean writing gracefully. Description won't necessarily make our writing more refined, lyrical or poetic. Some descriptions demand uneven syntax and plainspoken, blunt prose. Jagged, even. Fragments too. Slice of chin. Buzz saw. Description doesn't always require a bigger vocabulary. House is probably a better choice than domicile, a horse is easier to visualize than an equine mammal, and red blood is brighter than the sanguine flow of bodily fluids. Writing descriptively doesn't necessitate writing more. Description isn't a steroid, something to make our language bigger and stronger, nor is it an additive promising more miles to the fictional gallon. Sometimes writing descriptively means writing less. Our three-hundred-word description of the wedding cake might need to loose two hundred words; it may need to disappear altogether. Description rarely stands alone. Most description exists as part of a larger poem, essay or story, seamlessly intertwined with other literary elements. Description isn't something we simply insert, block style, into passages of narration or exposition. Resources First, looking in rather than out, I recommend the Useful Writing Resources thread started by one of our very own.
    Looking outside of the site, if you want to buff up your vocabulary, I suggest www.vocabulary.com and www.freerice.com.
    Vocabulary.com has a program in place that adapts your vocabulary level by your accuracy in answering questions, not just how many you get right but how many tries it takes you to get the right word, using both fill in the blank and multiple choice. It adjusts to teach you new words, and reintroduces words you struggled with previously to enforce familiarity with it.
    Freerice.com has a simpler version of the above program. The bonus is that each question you answer donates a certain amount of rice that goes towards feeding the hungry people in the world. It isn't much for a question or two, but with so many people playing the game worldwide we can make a difference. Valucre has a freerice group.
    A combination of the two isn't a bad idea either.
    This article on Point of View explores the benefits and limitations of First, Second and Third person. It has some solid examples, and suggests avenues you might want to explore when experimenting with your writing.
  24. Like
    supernal got a reaction from Csl for a article, Faux-ton Transportation System   
    Created by: amenities
    Developed by: supernal
    General Information
    The faux-ton (hereafter FT) is a piece of transportation technology created by Tia and debuted in the Terrenus World Fair on 26AO. The faux-ton is a converter which transmutes matter into coherent electromagnetic waves on one end, and which is converted into matter at the other end by use of a military-grade lossless compression-decompression algorithm and secured by PECS.
    The purpose of the FT was to provide a less expensive and more flexible option to the lightning rails, which are limited by their tracks whereas the FT can be quickly deployed by use of unconnected posts, and the warp gates, which require a tremendous amount of energy to provide instant travel where the FT can use a fraction of the energy cost to provide fast travel.
    The FT is limited by line of sight but can achieve speeds upwards of 27 MPS (or 100,000 MPH).
    In light of the lightning rails and warp gates both going offline due to the seismic shifts in the Wastelands and Shawnee genius loci, the FT has become a competitive standard for industrial fast transportation. 
    Features
    Redundancy – Although only one pylon at either end is the minimum requirement to establish a connection, Faux-Ton hubs are usually built with a four-pylon configuration. The first three provide a larger virtual pipe, meaning more materials can be transported at once, and also redundancy, so that the loss of a pylon does not result in a truncated connection. Should one of the three pylons fail the fourth "swaps in", and an alert is sent to technicians to address the faulty pylon.
    Validation – Once line-of-sight is established, FT send a 'keep-alive' pulse between the two ends periodically. This lets technicians monitor for clear passage and will send an alert if the keep-alive pulse is obstructed for more than a set amount of time, usually measured in milliseconds
    Confirmation – In the event of emergency a technician can send a 'confirmation pulse' down the line-of-sight, which is a high powered laser that drills a hole millimeters wide to allow for the quick passage of a transportation beam. This is done as a last resort and obstructions will usually be investigated prior to sending out a confirmation pulse.
    Dali Variant
    Due to the influence exerted by the loci native to Ursa Madeum, House Dali has taken the FT model and engineered a version of it compatible with their unique techno-magical ecosystem. Below are the fundamental changes to the underlying architecture:
    The object-body is still broken down into discrete units but in this case it is sent 'over the ether' rather than converted into photons The method by which the object is scattered is via an applied chaos field derived from modified ercaniron A Teletype brain is used as the central processing unit. The primary node is housed in Dali estate and a secondary node is housed in Andelusia. This is what manages the individual units and accurately recombines them on the other side Additional brains can be added to the network (Class A quests) which can increase redundancy or capacity, but not both, although functions can be switched to support one feature over the other depending on need Locations
    Public hubs Tia, Terrenus Aspyn, Biazo, Terrenus MOGAH museum, Qrill, Misral, Ursa Madeum Andelusia, Corinth, Ursa Madeum (CSL approved) Private hubs Floracle, Casper, Terrenus Dali vineyard (near Aspyn), Biazo, Terrenus Dali estate, Corinth, Ursa Madeum
  25. Superlike!
    supernal got a reaction from Thotification for a article, Mild Powers   
    Valucre is a mild powers forum. This means that we allow the use of powers, abilities, magic, etc. but limit them so as to keep the site balanced. There is wiggle room, mostly for the sake of story, but there has to be a cap. A new member that joins Valucre with a balanced character and sees someone throwing mountains will feel pressured to beef up in response. We emphasize balance, weaknesses, and character development over ability or power development. The error is in taking a tops-down (powers first) approach rather than a bottoms-up (character first) approach.
    As Valucre is a free-form site, rank or stat based systems are not an option. All we ask is that members exercise prudence when creating, choosing, and using abilities. Given the comfortable scale that our mild powers definition establishes, we care more about the end result, or consequences, of powers and abilities rather than origins or rationalizations. Our Character Creation Guide can give you some direction if you find yourself at a loss.
    Combat is always optional and requires both declaration and consent. As long as it is stated and agreed upon by both players, any system can be used to resolve an in-character conflict. Examples of this include collaboration (staff recommended), coin flips, dice systems, and so on. If players agree to combta but can't agree on a system, the default is the Mostly Orchestrated Battle System. Alternatives include the Terrenus Dice System and the Chosen Tournament Ruleset (Supplement: Fun with T1 is a useful, unofficial guide written by a member to help other members), among any of the various homebrew systems that you can find or create. 
    |Mild Powers|
    In order to understand the terminology, one needs a bit of history. In messenger, before Valucre was created, there were a few distinct forms of turn-based combat. Speed based combat emphasized speed, paragraph combat emphasized detail. PC allowed for a no-holds barred exhibition of ludicrous power, RM followed strict rules of realism. At some point MP was coined as a term to mean a system somewhere in the middle of the spectrum, where powers and magic were allowed but limited. The limit applied both to the amplitude of attack, the sheer number of abilities allowed, as well as a focus on generally doing away with any type of god-modding.
    |Examples of forbidden abilities|
    Excessive temporal manipulation ("Haste", for example, does not count; time travel does) Reality manipulation Creation of black holes or other celestial / astronomical bodies or phenomeona Attacks that manifest instantaneously Indestructible weapons, armors, unstoppable magic, infinite or impervious items, etc |Examples of generally disallowed abilities (can be used for NPCs or collaborative story purposes)
    Soul stealing (some writers don't believe in, or make use of, souls in their writing for example) Manifesting an attack inside of another person Automatic mind-control (vs attempted) Teleportation and other "instantaneous" abilities or actions "Magical scanning" or otherwise being able to meta-game knowledge about another user |Examples of allowed abilities|
    Enhanced senses Augmented physical and mental abilities Psionics (telekinesis, telepathy, pyromantic, etc, all dependent on the degree) Magic (spells, runes, hexes, voodoo, etc) The above describes Valucre's policy on types of attacks. Next, we will discuss the scale or amplitude of abilities.
    For storyline purposes, massive attacks are allowed within reason. World- or continent-destroying attacks will essentially always be disallowed; city-busting is sometimes feasible depending on the effort and activity leading up to this as well as obtained permission and coordinating of plot; and the destruction of a building or buildings is usually considered the upper limit of a character or group of characters. Be prepared to put in a considerable amount of work. Contributors work for years building up conceptual sand-castles, and don't want to see them destroyed in a turn or two.
    Abilities are judged mostly on their destructive or constructive potential, or the scale on which they apply, as opposed to their complexity. Stopping a boulder mid-flight and pushing it away is less complex than turning it to sand but both work on a similar scale and essentially accomplish the same thing.
    Creator: supernal
    Editors: desolate, traxien cion, supernal
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