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a goose

Outstanding BZPower Citizens
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  1. IC: Aden (The Burning Steppes) The Ko-Lesterin, one of those already waiting at the site, had her collar popped and her shoulder to the wind, the better to protect her face from the ash and smoke. Her eyes, though, still peeked out from above it, in what could perhaps have been a weather-induced squint, but was almost definitely a dismissive glare. “I’m Aden, the Broker’s ‘expert.’” Cold, condescending eyes scanned the other members of her party; she seemed unimpressed. “So which of you brutes was it that found this place, and how much damage should I expect inside?”
  2. IC: Pirok (The Fowadi) "Right, yes. Of course." The Toa of Fire sighed, and cast down his eyes. When he lifted his gaze, all levity in his expression had vanished. "It's about Echelon."
  3. IC: Pirok (The Fowadi) "She definitely didn't. Why would you even have asked if she'd already said it?"
  4. IC: Pirok (The Fowadi) "Hold on a second, I thought you didn't know what hospital we were in… so how come you remember it was Ga-Koro?"
  5. IC: Pirok (The Fowadi) "Wait, you mean that wasn't you?"
  6. IC: Pirok (The Fowadi) "I mean, I can understand why. Seems a bit extreme, but you were pretty weird about everything."
  7. IC: Pirok (The Fowadi) "No, no, it's cool, I get it. It's totally understandable to be embarrassed, we've all had to unlearn some stuff – I actually think it's really cool that you and Skyra are still friends, despite everything."
  8. IC: Me, Skyra, Merror, Weta… Elliane! Wait, no. What was that guy's name?
  9. IC: "Yeah, Skyra, it was just me, you, Merror and…" Huh. "No, there was someone else there. That other guy from the Astha."
  10. IC: "Yeah, that's actually kinda why I'm here. Not about your body specifically- that is, I mean, your guy body, the old body. Well, actually, yeah, about it, not your- ####. Let me take this from the top." He was on deck, now, and lucky to be red enough that no one could see how flushed he was. Probably. He nodded to Praggos, and held out a hand. "Hey, I'm Pirok."
  11. IC: "Oh, y'know. Still a guy. I mean- it's cool and all, nothing wrong with not being a guy anymore, if that's what, like, if that's who you Are, on the inside, and I guess also now the outside? Like, I'm supportive." His soul was dying with each step he took up the gangplank. "I'm not doing myself any favours here, am I?"
  12. IC: Holy ####, was that her? "Hey! Been a while!" He rubbed the back of his neck awkwardly. "Uh, permission to come aboard?"
  13. IC: It's funny; Ta-Wahi, in theory at least, should have felt like home. It didn't, of course, and it wasn't. But as out-of-place as he had once felt in Le-Koro, it was interesting that Ta had never really had a place for him either – and this in spite him having been just about the most stereotypical Ta-Matoran, and then Ta-Toa, imaginable, and even now not having fully grown out of it. He had grown, though. Grown a little older, a little wearier; grown enough to realise he had in many ways still been a child when he first received his powers. In spite of everything, in spite of the losses, in spite of Makuta, he looked back fondly on those times. But now wasn't the time for reminiscing – there would, he guessed, be plenty of that later, once he'd found… her. Her. That was taking a little getting used to. The finding, at least, wouldn't take much longer; one particular ship on the dock was abuzz with activity, which was as good an indication as any that he'd finally caught up to the Fowadi. "Ho there!" He shouted up to the deck, still standing on the jetty below. Ho there. Was that the right thing to say? He could swear he'd seen people shout that to ships before. "You the Aggressors? I'm, uh, I'm looking for Skyra – Skyra Daring?" OOC: @Snelly @otter @Krayzikk @Emzee
  14. IC: Wolf (Atero; Red Star Inn) Another shot downed; Wolf grimaced and growled. Drinking was expensive, especially for her, and the Serrata needed whatever she could bring back. Still, business had been good; between the Skrall and whatever had struck in Iron Canyon, people were nervous. Wolf offered reassurance, and the group of Fire Tribe Agori she had escorted to Atero had paid well for it. To her dismay, though, they weren't traveling out to Tajun for the Exhibition Matches; still, there would doubtless be more prospective clients here in the city. In these troubled times, reassurance was in high demand. OOC: Wolf is open for interaction.
  15. yeah i was really giving the watsonian explanation there to go doylist, cybernetics are just Really Cool, as is limiting the more alien technology to ancient gb stuff. the driving factor in why people should have jackhammer arms instead of jackhammers is very much just Rule of Cool
  16. Tragically, bones are just regular bones here, as cool a concept as that is (no concept is too grim for me tbh). Technology is a mixed bag; the technological advancements that there are are thanks to Great Being technologies that have been recovered, but that's mostly just accounted for vehicles, cybernetics and weapons. The point of comparison @BULiK has used, which I think is pretty spot-on, is the state of post-apocalyptic technology in Fallout, with the extreme disparities of advancement, where people can have energy weapons but still be living mostly in wooden shacks. As far as your specific examples, 'energy blaster' weapons are still a step too far at the moment. The tech that we do have has been reverse-engineered, or uses scraps and ingenuity, like the Thornax weapons; this is still a post-apocalyptic desert, with resource scarcity. If energy weapons appear, they're more likely to be still-functioning GB tech given out as a quest reward. This all plays into the overall uneven state of technological advancement; the Agori and Glatorian have been inheriting and reverse-engineering GB tech, rather than progress being a slower, more balanced process. TL;DR: technology is better than medieval, but much of it is reverse-engineered and still cobbled together. More futuristic sci-fi things like laser weapons aren't within the capabilities of Agori and Glatorian to make. Edit: Power tools are an odd one; due to the fact that people are more familiar with making cybernetics mods, thanks to reverse-engineered technologies, if someone has a power tool it's more likely that their arm is a power tool, rather than just having an electric drill or jackhammer.
  17. IC: Somnii's fingers clawed vainly at the scalding sand, in a desperate effort to, if not crawl – such feats of coordinated mobility having left her repertoire some hours ago – then at least drag herself out of Iron Canyon. They found no purchase, and she knew that she was already dead. Lying beneath the burning sun, too drained now to even feign attempts at survival, Somnii’s thoughts were occupied by the sound of screaming and the smell of blood. Such thoughts now consumed her every waking moment. When she first realised she hadn’t left the horrors of Ferrum behind her, she had wept; she would be weeping still, if there was even a drop of moisture left in her body with which to do so. Somnii had no doubt that she would dream of Ferrum, too. She would take it. She would take anything at all. As the world finally began to turn dark around her, she sighed in relief. It took her a moment to realise she lay not in the shadow of death, but that of a Rock Steed. She squinted, trying to discern what she could about its rider, but all she saw were four cold, blue eyes. As the dark figure dismounted, and other Steeds gathered behind him, Somnii felt unconsciousness tugging at her mind, and moaned softly in pain and resignation as she finally succumbed to sleep. Across the canyon, in a chamber nestled into the black crag above Vulcanus, was an empty seat. Raanu examined it with an abiding sense of dread, as if in doing so he might glean some clue as to the fate of its owner. The chair and its five twins were tucked into a round, dark-wood table, with another two similarly unoccupied. At the remaining three sat the Fire Tribe leader himself, and his colleagues of the Water and Jungle Tribes. "I see little value in waiting any longer. It's time, I think, that this meeting was called to order." "Half our number are still absent, Raanu." "No, he's quite right." The support of Scodonius, though welcome, made him feel more than a little uncomfortable. "I didn't come all the way out here just to have my time wasted by that smug little #####. Tajun's exhibition match is next week, my people need me to organise the preparations." "An emergency like this calls for a unified response – if something has happened in Ferrum, the Ice Tribe is affected too. He may be a ‘smug little #####,’ but Metus has a right to be involved in this discussion." "Metus is likely as not responsible for our lack of contact with the Iron Tribe. Lest we forget, without Ferrum's iron, Iconox becomes-" "Enough!" The scraping of Raanu's voice was almost as harsh as that of his chair on the floor, as the venerable Agori rose suddenly to his feet. He needed a moment to catch his breath, too, his aged voice ill-suited for shouting. "You two are bickering like children, talking of Tournaments, while Bara Magna is on the verge of crisis! Something’s changed. Don’t tell me you don’t feel it. The Iron Tribe have gone silent, the Skrall are pushing south, and my scouts are coming back with disturbing reports about Bone Hunters – they’re organised now, sweeping the desert in search grids. They say they have a new leader, some desert-walker they call the Ghost.” “Come now, Raanu, rangers have always been paranoid. Too much time out in the desert and men start to get superstitious; it’s the only way to survive. Surely you know better than to believe in ghost stories.” The door had opened so silently, and Raanu's outburst been so severe, that their tardy colleague had been able to slither into the room entirely unnoticed. "Metus." "Raanu." The leader of the Ice Tribe kicked his feet up onto the ornate table as he sat down, earning a glare from his elder. "Alright, sheesh, I'll put 'em down. Thank you all for waiting, by the way; I was worried you might have started without me." "If it's of such great concern to you, perhaps you should consider arriving on time for the next meeting." "What, and miss out on the opportunity to make an entrance?" His smile received only stony silence in reply, and his expression withered. "Anyway, it's a good thing you did, or else I wouldn't have been able to tell you about what happened to our missing friend from Ferrum." Scodonius' eyes narrowed, and Metus allowed himself a chuckle. "Nothing to do with me, I assure you. No, it was the Bone Hunters who found poor Somnii, parched and half-feral out in the desert. Tragically, she didn't last long-" "Natural causes, I hope." "I'm sure Crucius would be willing to drag her rotting corpse to Vulcanus, if you're really that eager to inspect it for yourself." He paused, smiling with icy eyes at Raanu. "No? Alright then. As I was saying, she survived just long enough to tell them what became of Ferrum." "And?" “And it's not pretty, I'm afraid. There was a mine collapse, and it sounds like whatever it shook up unleashed some sort of plague on the village. Nasty stuff, I hear; it's what left poor Somnii in such a state when they found her. Tore through half the tribe, maybe more." "Somnii said all that? While 'parched and half-feral'?" "Well, I may have embellished a little, but the core details are all there. Suffice to say, it seems Ferrum is something of a lost cause." "We'll decide that for ourselves. If Somnii left to seek aid for her people, then we owe it to her to act." Raanu stroked his chin. "I'm not sure I can agree, Linnea. If this plague is as bad as Metus says-" "Just awful," he added, frowning melodramatically as he tilted his chair back with his foot. "If this alleged plague truly is so dangerous, then we put our own people at risk by sending them to Ferrum. Metus, we will need to examine the body ourselves, in order to determine what we can about the nature of this sickness." Metus momentarily lost his balance, just barely catching the table as the front legs of his chair came harshly back to earth. "Ah, well, no-can-do, I'm afraid." "You just said-" "Figure of speech, my boy. See, the Bone Hunters, well, they only went and burned the body the moment she expired. Can't be too careful, I suppose, what with all the, uh, plague… germs… that she must have had on her. Really, you can hardly blame them." "Speak for yourself. This all seems a bit too convenient, Raanu, especially when all we have is this snake's word-" "Woah, now tell me how you really feel." "-that even a fraction of it is true." Raanu furrowed his brow, fingers steepled upon the table. "We cannot afford to take anything for granted. A small party of Glatorian will be sent to Ferrum, to ascertain the truth of what's taking place there. And Metus-" "Yes?" "I will need to speak with this Crucius character." "I'm not sure that's really-" "Then get sure. I want his account of finding Somnii, from him, and I want his assurances that our scouting party will be afforded safe passage through Iron Canyon. Valuable as your Exsidian is, the rest of this Council can still issue enough sanctions between us to make you regret non-cooperation." "Non-cooperation? Raanu, you wound me – of course I'll set you up with a face-to-face. I only meant to say that the Hunters can be a little slow to trust; they just might still want me present as an… intermediary." "Very well. Do what you can, and we will cross that bridge when we come to it. For now, this meeting is adjourned." As Metus turned away from him, Raanu could swear he glimpsed an unfamiliar darkness in the Ice Agori's eyes. Bitterness and resentment were not uncommon to witness upon the man's face; his ego was outmatched only by his victim complex. Still, there had been something else there too, something that Raanu had not seen before. And try as he might, he couldn't quite convince himself that what he'd caught in Metus' eyes wasn't fear. Somnii came to in a cool, stone cell. She remembered little of the last few days; only a blur of questioning, sleeping, and drinking what little water her captors provided to her. She hadn't seen the four-eyed man again since she had passed out in Iron Canyon, though the Bone Hunter who had led her interrogation appeared to speak for him, judging by how the others treated him. Crucius, they called him; most of the Hunters, Somnii could hardly tell apart, so similar were their helmets and garments. Crucius was different, and unfocused as her sight was, she could easily recognise that it was him stood outside her cell door, speaking to two of his subordinates. From the shoulder down, Crucius' right arm had been replaced with one of pale metal, attached directly to the stump. The construction was advanced, but what truly surprised Somnii was its apparent lack of wear-and-tear, gleaming as if it had only recently been installed and had yet to be fully acquainted with the sands of Bara Magna. She knew the material, of course; there wasn't an Agori or Glatorian on Bara Magna who wouldn't recognise Exsidian. "...is not to be harmed, do you understand?" "We didn't-" "That also means that she's to be properly fed and watered, Fero. He wants her kept for observation; how's he meant to observe if she's dehydrated and starving?" The other Agori muttered darkly and clenched his fist, but still ultimately walked away. Crucius stayed, and stared down at Somnii through the bars. "Don't look so glum, girl. I doubt the Ghost will spare the effort to save you; you'll still be dead soon enough." As he walked away, he rolled his shoulder, splaying and unsplaying his metal fingers. Somnii watched him as the darkness crept back into the corners of her eyes, and a familiar weight dragged her down once more into the dreamless depths of sleep. OOC: Welcome to the Wastelands, everyone.
  18. Profiles Topic | IC Topic | OOC Topic | Game Rules The Desert is a hostile, unforgiving place. This is why we built walls to keep it out. This is why we stay together, in our Tribes, for no one can survive the Desert alone. This is why we do not wage war against one another: We are already at war with the Desert. When our differences cannot be resolved with words, we solve them in the arena: a Glatorian stands to represent each village, and to the victor go the spoils. These matches have become a crucial element of our culture, with bouts fought just as often for sport as for peace-keeping, if not moreso. This is the purpose of our Arena Magna, the pride of Atero, a monument of civilisation that has stood for time untold against the Desert’s brutality. It stood when water still flowed through the Skrall River, and it stands still now that we are perched above falls of liquid sand. It is in the Arena Magna that we hold our annual Grand Tournament, where Glatorian and Agori meet in glorious combat to decide our Champion. The preparations have already begun: as we speak, Agori are hard at work in Atero, refurbishing the Arena, and the exhibition matches in villages across Bara Magna have begun. It is sure to be a spectacle to rival all that came before. This year, we fight in honour of our cousins in the Iron Tribe, who are unable to join us due to issues in their village. We wish them well, and look forward to their return in next year’s games. Anyone travelling from their home village for a match, whether to Atero or anywhere else, should make sure to take extra precautions on the roads. Remember: always travel in groups, and keep a regular watch at night. Though there is no immediate concern over the reports of unusual Bone Hunter activity, it is always wise to exert caution out in the Wastes. Additionally, please refrain from Zesk-hunting during this time, as disrupting their habitats may result in difficulties on the roads due to unexpected migration. Worry not, though, as each village has guards and archers at the ready to deter any vermin that wander too close to our borders. With those announcements out of the way: Glatorian, Agori, gathered friends of all stripes… Let the Games begin! The Setting The Solis Magna System The Solis Magna system is the solar system in which Bara Magna resides. The life stage of its star, the eponymous Solis Magna, is unknown, as is the exact number of planets in the system. Bara Magna Bara Magna is the only known habitable planet in the Solis Magna system, orbited by two moons, Aqua and Bota Magna. The vast majority of Bara Magna’s landmass is desert, owing to some unknown disaster in the distant past; the ruins of the civilisation that came before, now known only as the Great Beings, are scattered across the planet, but most notably form the foundations of the cities Atero and Roxtus. Points of Interest Villages There are eight main settlements in the Wastelands of Bara Magna: Atero is the capital city and the site of the Arena Magna, a structure dating back to the Great Beings themselves. It is the closest thing to a melting pot on Bara Magna, welcoming to Agori and Glatorian of all backgrounds, although tribe affiliation is still expected. Though freelance Glatorian exist, they are still compelled to make deals to fight for tribes in exchange for food and board, which are otherwise largely inaccessible. Atero is managed by a City Council of representatives from each of the Exhibition Match villages: Kyry of Vulcanus, Kirbold of Iconox, Tarduk of Tesara, and the typically truant Kirbraz of Tajun. Vulcanus is home to the Fire Tribe. The nearby lava flow is harnessed by the expert craftsmen of the village; with its heat, they forge weapons, armour, and mechanical components from the iron and exsidian they trade from Ferrum and Iconox. Vulcanus once had its own supply of Exsidian; however, it proved too dangerous to mine, and one of Raanu's first acts as Tribe Leader was to shut these mines down. The Arena Vulcanus, built atop the lava flow, is among the most impressive on Bara Magna, with various mechanical functions; for instance, the ability to let the lava flow into the arena, creating islands separated by streams of molten rock, an environmental hazard suited only to the most expert of Glatorian. The leader of Vulcanus, and by extension the Fire Tribe, is Raanu. Tajun is the home of the Water Tribe. Built in shaded crevasses below surface level, this village is the site of the largest known oasis on Bara Magna, providing its citizens with the most readily available source of water in the Wastelands. It’s this water that they trade with other villages, in exchange for the foodstuffs of Tesara and the metalwork of Vulcanus. It is also home to the Arena Tajun. Tajun is also currently home to the workshop of Celrys, the famed artificer. Tajun is led by Scodonius, who covertly supports the village's thriving criminal element despite Berix being its face. The twin villages of Tesara are home to the Jungle Tribe. Built atop two gigantic tree stumps connected by a bridge, Tesara is surrounded by an incredible rarity on Bara Magna: a large swath of lush greenery. Thanks to this unique resource, Tesara is the sole export of non-animal agriculture and wood, which isn’t used for much construction outside Tesara itself as a result of its rarity. The Arena Tesara lies in the northmost reaches of the green zone, and just beyond that are the Hot Springs. Between the roots of its two great trees stands the statue known as the Lord of the Jungle, a lichen-covered giant believed to represent one of the six Element Lords, quasi-religious figures who are believed to have created the biomes in which the villages lie. Tesara is led by the Merchants Guild and its Chairwoman, Linnea. Iconox is the village of the affluent Ice Tribe. Its location in the White Quartz Mountains gives the Ice Tribe alone access to Exsidian, the most valuable metal ore on Bara Magna. Mined using slave labour, Exsidian is used in all cybernetics and other complex mechanical parts due to its unique properties. Relations between the Ice Tribe and other villages are tense, due to the universal reliance on Exsidian and their purchasing of slaves from the Bone Hunters. Another source of suspicion is the notable lack of Bone Hunter raids on Ice Tribe caravans despite their value, believed by some to be due to their trade relations. Iconox and its Tribe are led by Metus, who was buoyed to power by his discovery of the very Exsidian vein that has made Iconox so powerful in recent years. Ferrum, located at the far end of Iron Canyon, is home to the Iron Tribe. Despite its apparent proximity to Vulcanus, which has always helped the booming trade between the two villages – which trade iron and mining equipment, in a symbiotic loop – Iron Canyon is extremely dangerous to traverse, near impossible for those unfamiliar with the safest route. Trade with Vulcanus is currently halted as a result of this, with only the Iron Tribe’s traders – who haven’t been seen in some weeks – able to safely navigate it. This has also held back any outreach to discern the issues currently facing Ferrum. The leader of Ferrum and the Iron Tribe is the Agori Somnii. The city of Roxtus is the current home of the militaristic Rock Tribe. Though the Rock Tribe is known to the rest of Bara Magna only by its males, the Skrall, these are only the military wing of the tribe. The actual leaders are the females, known as the Sisters of the Skrall; they possess alleged psionic abilities, and are feared and hated by the males who serve them. Male Skrall are not entitled to names – unless they earn a title through some extraordinary act, they will be known only as Skrall. Additionally, Roxtus is not the original home of the Skrall; previously, they resided in the Skrall Fortress, north of the Black Spike Mountains, until they were pushed South by an unknown enemy. This fact is unknown to all outside the Rock Tribe, as the Skrall have led the rest of Bara Magna to believe that they are expanding South, not retreating. Like Iconox, Roxtus makes use of slave labour, supplied by the Bone Hunters. The Sisters of the Skrall live apart from the men, residing within Skull Mountain, immediately adjacent to Roxtus; none but the Sisters themselves are allowed entry, barring the occasions on which they select a male for breeding purposes. Such men return broken and mentally feeble, and are shunned by their peers. So great is the dishonour of laying with a Sister that those who do so are forbidden even from calling themselves Skrall, and are forced into exile. The Skrall military is led by Tirveus, and the Sisters by Visena. The Bone Hunter Stronghold, located in the eastern reaches of the wastelands, houses the greatest concentration of Bone Hunters. Other long and short-term encampments exist in order to enable their movements around the desert, but the Stronghold is, for all intents and purposes, their home base. Chief among these smaller outposts is the Gatherers’ Hideout, located beneath the Dark Falls south of Roxtus, and just north of Creep Canyon. The Bone Hunters, in fact, traditionally refer to themselves as 'the Gatherers', with ‘Bone Hunters’ having begun as a pejorative before entering common parlance. Though they operate in small groups with individual, disconnected leaders, a mysterious newcomer called 'the Ghost' is attempting to unify them under his banner, with the aid of his right-hand man, Crucius. Smaller villages are also scattered around Bara Magna, though these are often subject to Bone Hunter raids, such settlements being difficult to maintain in the brutal Wastelands. Natural Landmarks The Wastelands are the mapped area of Bara Magna, from the Black Spike Mountains in the north to the Sea of Liquid Sand in the south. Though this stretch of desert is, for the most part, barren and desolate, there are a few more hospitable areas from which the Agori settlements have grown. Little vegetation grows in the desert, Thornax plants being the most common exception, and the wildlife is frequently hostile. The Dunes of Treason are one of the largest regions in the Wastelands, bordered by the White Quartz Mountains to the west, the Green Zone to the north, and the Skrall River to the east, and stretching as far south as Tajun. This part of the desert is almost entirely composed of sand dunes, punctuated by some rocky outcrops, and is almost entirely uninhabitable. The Eastern Canyons (Creep Canyon & Iron Canyon) are perhaps Bara Magna's most hostile locations, thanks in large part to being the primary habitat of the Skopio: colossal insectoid beasts, who react aggressively to any intrusion upon their territory. If a traveller happens to be lucky enough to avoid them, they're still likely to fall victim to the Bone Hunters who patrol the area, or perhaps simply become lost amongst the twisting paths – infamously difficult to traverse without an experienced navigator – there to die of thirst. Iron Canyon is especially treacherous due to its extremely narrow paths being ill-suited for vehicles. Sandray Canyon is a smaller canyon located south-east of Tajun, named after the creatures who inhabit the Sea of Liquid Sand. Though not as treacherous as the others, there have been sightings of Skopio, so caution is still advised. The Sea of Liquid Sand is an ocean-like expanse of the same fluid sand that flows through the Skrall River. The Skrall River flows through the Wastelands; although it's known to have once been entirely made up of water, throughout living memory it has been a stream of liquid sand from the foot of the Dark Falls south until it enters the Sea of Liquid Sand. The White Quartz Mountains are a range of snow-capped peaks, rich in Exsidian ore. The main landmarks within the mountain range are Iconox, Elbow Peak (a canyon flanked by two mountain ridges) and Gatherer's Ridge, a line of mountains stretching further east than the rest, into the northern border of the Green Zone. The Green Zone, sometimes called the Tesara Green Zone, is an area of dense vegetation in the north-west of the Wastelands. Home to Tesara and the Hot Springs, it is the only source of wood and non-animal agriculture for the other villages. The Black Spike Mountains are the southernmost stretch of a large mountain range north of the Wastelands. The area is volcanic and unstable, and honeycombed with tunnels that appear to have been dug by the Great Beings. The treacherous terrain, and the presence of the Skrall, have prevented proper mapping of the mountain range and the regions beyond. The Culture Skrall Due to their isolation from the other Tribes, the Rock Tribe military has developed its own unique culture, based primarily around winning honour through feats of martial prowess, and thereby demonstrating Skrall superiority. All Skrall are nameless by default, receiving names only when they have proved themselves worthy. Though these worthy Skrall can be stripped of their names if they dishonour themselves, there is no greater dishonour than to be chosen for bedding by one of the Sisters of the Skrall. The Sisters are treated with superstition and fear, due in large part to their psychic abilities; it is using these unnatural abilities that they craft the cybernetics used by the Skrall, and through them that they detect and choose the few fertile male Skrall for procreation (almost all male Skrall are barren). Upon their return, these Skrall (psychologically broken by their experience) are banished from the Rock Tribe, and stripped of the right even to call themselves Skrall. The secondary colouration of a Skrall denotes his rank: red for regular Skrall, maroon for Special Forces Skrall, and green for leader-class Skrall. Likewise, the rank of a Sister is apparent by her secondary colour: yellow for a regular Sister, teal for Priestesses, and blue for the High Priestess. The Sand Tribe Little is known of the exact history of the Sand Tribe, except that they were once as intelligent as other Agori and Glatorian. For centuries now, however, they have been little more than animals, moving through the desert in packs and communicating with clicks and other strange noises that bare only the most tangential resemblance to language. Efforts have been made by some particularly determined anthropologists to establish communications with them, proving in the process that they still retain some basic form of intelligence; however, the people of the Wastelands still view the Vorox and the Zesk as beasts and vermin, respectively. Great Beings The Great Beings (dubbed as such by the Agori) are a long-extinct, technologically advanced race of four-eyed humanoids who ruled Bara Magna millennia ago. Their ruins and technology continue to be of great value to the Agori; both Atero and Roxtus are built upon the remains of Great Being cities, and modern cybernetics and vehicles would not exist if not for unearthed Great Being technologies and the major breakthroughs to which they led. Their appearance is known to the Agori primarily from statues in Atero and at other Great Being sites, although the remains of long-dead Great Beings have occasionally been discovered in decades and centuries past. Element Lords The six Element Lords are quasi-religious figures of myth. Each one is believed to have brought life to the Wastelands by creating a biome in which the Agori now live, and the six largest tribes (Rock, Jungle, Fire, Water, Ice and Sand) are named after them. A statue of the Lord of the Jungle can be found between the base of the two great trees in Tesara, a roughly humanoid figure with no head and unusually long arms, which twist upon themselves like vines and plunge into the soil amidst the trees’ roots. Though overgrown with moss and flora, the Lord of the Jungle is still treated as something of a religious monument. Trade The Tribes and villages of the Wastelands trade various valuable commodities with one another; though some are obvious, such as wood and foodstuffs from Tesara, water from Tajun, and iron from Ferrum, others are more unusual. Vulcanus, for instance, is the home of industry in the Wastelands; although it once had its own Exsidian mines, it now forges weapons, cybernetics and mechanical components using Iconox’s Exsidian and Ferrum’s iron, and trades these for both necessities and the materials required to produce more. Atero’s status as the capital city of Bara Magna is not just the result of its high walls and central position; every safe trade route in Bara Magna, as shown on the map, converges upon the city, leading to its bustling marketplace. Though the city is at its busiest around the time of the Great Tournament, merchants provide plenty of business for its inns throughout the rest of the year. Exsidian is by far the most valuable metal on Bara Magna; its unique properties make it ideal for cybernetics, circuitry and complex mechanical components. Though once provided by Vulcanus, before its mines were shut down by Raanu, the relatively recent discovery by Metus of a vein in the White Quartz Mountains has quickly made Iconox an economic powerhouse. The slave trade, distasteful as it is, plays an important part in the economy of Bara Magna; after all, Iconox’s Exsidian is mined using slaves provided by the Bone Hunters. Roxtus is also reliant on slave labour, and both it and Iconox have backdoor trade routes with the Hunters. It’s through these that the Bone Hunters receive Exsidian from Iconox, which they provide to Roxtus in exchange for Skrall supplies, weapons and cybernetics. The Bone Hunters don’t only trade in slaves, however; perhaps even more lucrative to them is the trade of Spice, a psychoactive drug. The ideal source of unrefined Spice is Skopio bone marrow; however, impure Spice can also be found in the soil in and around Creep Canyon, particularly in those areas in which Skopio reside. It is for this reason that the Eastern Canyons are their primary hunting grounds.
  19. Personal Characters Celrys Gender: Male Species: Agori Tribe: Unknown (Lives in Tajun) Appearance: A gold and black Agori with pale blue eyes, Celrys is covered in his own modifications. His right eye has been replaced with a scope, and his left hand is now entirely mechanical, designed so that he can apply whatever attachments he needs to for fine detail work on cybernetic mods, and occasionally even for surgically applying those mods to others. Traits: Utterly brilliant and surprisingly personable, Celrys is a True Believer in the power of cybernetics. He believes that it’s through cybernetics that people have the power to reshape not only themselves, but the world around them, and make both better in the process. Biography: Celrys rose to fame as a brilliant innovator in cybernetic modifications, to the point where the Celtech logo is emblazoned on the enhancements of almost every champion-league Glatorian. To this day, he continues to take interest in unique projects, even as he has outsourced the production of his basic mods to the Celtech facility in Vulcanus. His wealth allows him to live comfortably in his workshop in Tajun, taking the personal commissions that interest him most. Weakness: Celrys’ curiosity is his greatest strength, and his greatest flaw. When something catches his interest, all concepts of personal safety (and even, sometimes, ethics) go out the window. Proteus (Teia) Gender: Female Species: Agori Tribe: Ice (Lives in Atero) Appearance: Teia is an odd mix of white and vibrant blue, owing to her parentage (a father from the Ice Tribe, and a mother from the Water Tribe), although the Ice Tribe influence shines through strongest, through both her blue eyes and her traditionally ice-themed armour. She is short even for an Agori, and though fairly slim, she has a round face and soft features. Traits: Teia’s odd colour scheme immediately marks her as an outcast, and that has shaped much of her personality. Shy and withdrawn by nature, she kept to herself in Iconox; since her father’s recent death, she has chosen to seek out a fresh start in Atero, and is trying to overcome those traits. Weakness: As an Agori, Teia is naturally weaker than a Glatorian; her greater weakness, however, is a psychological one. Although she is attempting to be brave and outgoing, she is by nature shy and neurotic, leaving her fighting a constant internal battle against her own instincts. Leif Gender: Female Species: Glatorian Tribe: Jungle Appearance: Lithe and just a smidge below average height, Leif has the traditional lime and dark green colouration of her tribe, with a greater emphasis on the lime. Her eyes are apple green. Traits: Leif is the ultimate image of a Jungle Tribe Glatorian – youthful, inexperienced, and over-eager. Despite not having much of a proven record in the Arena, she sees the forthcoming Great Tournament as her chance to make a name for herself, and become – if not Champion – then at least a Glatorian in demand. Glory is her greatest priority. Cybernetics: Leif has had her legs and feet fitted with special, shock absorbing technology, in addition to a technology she calls ‘jump boosters’, which both allow her to jump higher than would naturally be possible and slow her descent enough that she can fight from the air. Both modifications were custom-built by Celrys, who took the contract out of sheer curiosity as to whether Leif’s unique strategy could work. Weakness: Leif is almost suicidally reckless, caring not a whit for her own personal safety, and not truly appreciating just how inexperienced she is in combat. 'Wolf' (Arten) Gender: Female Species: Glatorian Tribe: Serrat (Approved by Bulik) Appearance: Wolf wears a silver helm in the likeness of her eponymous animal, and a beige scarf which covers the lower half of her face while she travels. She wears little armour; a metal chestplate, shoulder and knee pads, boots, and coverage on her back. Aside from this, she wears light, loose fabric in shades of grey and black, which leaves only a little of her dark purple skin exposed, the better for surviving the elements. Metal likewise adorns her forearms; rather than being armour, however, this folds out into poison-tipped Mantis Blades. Traits: Wolf is withheld and few of words, uninterested in speaking merely to fill silence. When she speaks, she does so with purpose. Cybernetics: Folding mantis blades in her forearms, tipped with Skopio venom (a potent paralytic), and a toxin regulator. The regulator prevents the venom from killing or otherwise seriously harming her in case of malfunction or damage to the venom delivery system, but it has the side effect of making it quite a bit harder to get drunk. In addition to this, the venom has to be refilled; she keeps multiple vials on her as a result. Weakness: Wolf's lack of ranged weaponry means that she has to get up close and personal with any foe, and though her sparse armour is good for her mobility, it puts her at greater risk of injury. In addition to this, Wolf's lack of social graces can make interaction difficult for her. Staff Characters Visena Gender: Female Species: Skrall Tribe: Sisters of the Skrall Appearance: Visena stands a head taller than any regular Skrall or Sister, with the traditional blue accents of the High Priestess. The specifics of her appearance, however, are almost entirely hidden by her black and blue Sister robes, leaving only her head truly visible, showing blue eyes and a short, feminine crest. Traits: Utterly mercurial. All that truly shines through is her cold and calculating nature. Biography: Visena was a destined High Priestess from the moment she was born. That is all that needs to be known. Somnii Gender: Female Species: Agori Tribe: Iron Appearance: Somnii’s appearance is typical for an Iron Agori – primarily rust orange, with accents of dark grey. Her eyes and face are a vibrant green. Traits: Somnii’s youth is a source of great insecurity for her, and she compensates for this by aiming to seem wise beyond her years. As a result, she’s known for being fair and level-headed, fostering a reputation as a caring and approachable leader. Unlike Raanu, she is more than willing to take immediate action once she has heard what she needs to, something which has helped her as a negotiator and a resolver of disputes, even if it can lead to her occasionally behaving rashly. Biography: Somnii is both the youngest leader in the Iron Tribe’s history, and the youngest currently-serving leader of any Tribe, a position she earned through her surprising business savvy and abilities as a trade negotiator. Since being installed as leader, she has been well-liked and respected by her people for her down-to-earth leadership style and willingness to engage directly with members of her Tribe, especially when solving disputes. Crucius Gender: Male Species: Agori Tribe: Bone Hunters Appearance: Crucius, for the most part, looks like any other Bone Hunter or Rock Tribe Agori, shades of black and grey with (in his case) green eyes. Where he stands apart is his right arm, an advanced prosthetic made entirely of Exsidian. Traits: Crucius is feared by Hunters and non-Hunters alike, having quickly risen out of obscurity as the right-hand man and personal envoy of the Ghost. He is callous, pragmatic, and as fiercely loyal to his master as he is ruthless. Biography: Crucius was part of a Skopio-hunting party that attempted to take down the Leviathan of Creep Canyon; he returned to his clan having lost his fellows and his arm, but accompanied by the one now known as the Ghost, with the giant carcass in tow. His clan was the first to unite behind the Ghost, and Crucius himself has been the voice of the enigmatic figure in all negotiations with other tribes. ‘The Ghost’ Gender: Male Species: ??? Tribe: Bone Hunters Biography: The Ghost is a mysterious figure, already shrouded in myth and rumour despite only recently having appeared upon the scene of Bara Magna. He has kept almost entirely to himself since, with his right hand Crucius speaking for him in all negotiations with other Bone Hunter clans, though there are some who claim to have at least seen him, if not met him, though few accounts actually match.
  20. Profiles Topic | IC Topic | OOC Topic | Game Rules Here is where you post the profile, or profiles, for your Ghosts of Bara Magna character(s). Please make only one post in this topic; if you add more characters later, edit them into your original post, rather than making a new one. This makes it easier for other players to find your profiles. Also, please create your own original characters – that is to say, you cannot play characters from canon, at least not without mod permission. Within this one post, every character you play (barring special circumstances specifically approved by a mod) should have their own unique character profile before you begin playing as them. Each profile must include your character's species, appearance, equipment, cybernetics and/or vehicle, and a specific weakness. Obviously writing weaknesses is a right pain in the arse, but I encourage it not only for balancing but also as an important aspect of character development. A weakness doesn't have to be physical or combat-specific – it can be a bum knee or an old war wound just as easily as a phobia or a blinding ego. What's important is that you take the time to consider the flaws that hamper your character, and make them more human. Other optional profile sections, which I still heartily recommend, are your character's rough age, pronouns, gender, basic personality traits, and a biography (if relevant). Though there is no specifically prescribed structure for profiles, you can look to a goose and Bulik's profile posts for ideas on how you might format yours. Vehicles and cybernetics will need to be approved by a goose or Bulik. Please contact us by PM or on Discord to make approval requests. Species There are two, and only two, species available to players: Glatorian, or Agori. As you may already know, Glatorian are the warriors of Bara Magna, and Agori the villagers, though the gap in their powers is much smaller than that of Matoran and Toa since Glatorian have neither Kanohi nor elemental powers. Their advantage over Agori is their size and their strength, the latter being far more diminutive and ill-equipped for fighting. It is for this reason that Agori fighting in the Arena do so in vehicles. Although both Glatorian and Agori make use of them, only Agori characters have an automatic entitlement to vehicles. As this risks an unfair advantage for Agori characters, I still urge you to request vehicle approval for your Glatorian if you wish, with the caveat that there is a maximum of one Glatorian vehicle per player, which hopefully will still be plenty. The balancing factor is cybernetic enhancements: though all of Bara Magna’s residents have some form of technological augmentation, those of the Glatorian are specialised for combat purposes. Each Glatorian character is allowed two cybernetic enhancements, to be approved by a mod. You don’t have to take advantage of any of these things – feel free to create a Glatorian without cybernetics, or an Agori without a vehicle. These are just the options that are available to you, and you can always choose to add them to your character at a later point (with mod approval and sufficient IC explanation). Vorox and Zesk, which require specific approval (further details below), are considered a distinct species; however, for gameplay purposes, they follow the same entitlement rules as Glatorian and Agori, respectively. The Sisters of the Skrall are not available to play. It is important to note that, unlike in canon, Glatorian and Agori have roughly human lifespans, leaning at most only slightly longer than our own. Tribes The deserts of Bara Magna are unforgiving, and no one can survive them alone. With the exception of some freelancing Glatorian (who still have to take jobs from tribes, if they want food to eat and roofs over their heads), the people of Bara Magna largely belong to one of six tribes: Fire, Water, Ice, Rock, Jungle, and Iron. A seventh tribe, Sand, has long since devolved into barbarism; the Vorox and Zesk, as they are now known, display only animal intelligence. Split off from the Rock Tribe are the Agori known as the Bone Hunters, marauders who walk the desert in search of easy prey, raiding caravans and villages for resources and slaves. Though player creativity is encouraged, specific approval from a goose will be required for any character belonging to the Iron or Sand Tribe, with approval being especially difficult to attain for the latter (for, I hope, fairly obvious reasons). These two tribes are otherwise unavailable for play at present. In addition to the initially available five, custom tribes are welcome. Simply send a mod the name of the tribe, their leader, their colours, and the basic details of their village (name, location, etc) for approval, and boom, you’ve got a Gravity tribe. TL;DR: Agori and Glatorian Only Skrall are Glatorian/Agori Vorox and Zesk are a separate species Agori can have vehicles by default Glatorian vehicles are by request (each player can have one glatorian vehicle) Glatorian can have two custom cybernetic augments (each requiring approval) Most characters are in tribes Iron and Sand tribe characters require staff approval Custom tribes can be created (requires approval) Profiles should have at a bare minimum enough information for other players to understand their rough appearance and understand their capabilities and weaknesses. You are free to be as elaborate or as elusive as you want to format it.
  21. Profiles Topic | IC Topic | OOC Topic | Game Rules The Premise Ghosts of Bara Magna is an open sandbox TBRPG, designed to encourage player freedom and agency. Though there are plot threads, they’re just that: threads, for you to pull on as you see fit. I have as little an idea of what the future has in store as you do, and I can’t wait to see what becomes of this world, how you grow it and improve it far beyond what my imagination could ever conjure. Players are also encouraged to create their own quests or plots, whether based on an established element of the world or something entirely new – I would recommend seeking out mod approval for these, so that we can provide access to elements of our own toolbox. In an ideal world you should be driving the story of the RPG at least as much as me, if not even moreso, and I want to make sure the tools to accomplish just that will be at your disposal. It's important to note that this is not necessarily Bara Magna as you know it; though I've aimed to stay true to the spirit of 2009, and what I believe to be the untapped potential of Bara Magna as a setting, this is not the canon Bara Magna. What does that mean in practice? Well, Agori and Glatorian have roughly human lifespans, leaning slightly longer than our own. This means that far more of the events of centuries past are long-forgotten; similarly, The Shattering as we know it cannot be assumed to have occurred. Not only is no one old enough to recall the cataclysmic event that left Bara Magna a wasteland, but Bara Magna should be assumed to be its own planet with its own history, not a fragment of a larger Spherus Magna. If the planets of the Solis Magna system were once connected, it was so long ago now that it hardly matters. Bota Magna and Aqua Magna do exist, but little is known about them beyond their clearly observable ocean and jungle coverage. This has implications closer to ground level, too: things you may recognise from canon, such as the Great Beings or the Dreaming Plague, are not necessarily the same as you remember them. All this to say, don't assume that you know what you're in for – after all, I hardly created this RPG just to rehash what we've already seen. The mysteries of Bara Magna are mysteries once more, with answers that may yet surprise you. The GMs At present, the GMs are a goose and Bulik. Bulik can field any approval I can, apart from requests for Sand or Iron Tribe characters. Not much more to say on that, really. The Rules If you’re familiar with the absolutely iconic work that is Tuck’s Guide to Common Sense, the majority of rules (and plenty of other handy hints!) are helpfully outlined there. However, for convenience: Every player must make one (and only one) post in the profiles topic, and update this with the profiles of each of their characters. PCs are to be original characters. This doesn’t mean you can’t copy your favourite Ryan Gosling silent stare role, but rather, that you can’t play characters from canon. When writing out of character in a post, you should preface what you say with ‘OOC:’. When writing in character, you should preface with ‘IC:’, the name of your character, and their current location. Furthermore, when possible, out of character discussions should be kept within the Discussion Topic or the RPG Discord server (link). Given that PvP will play an important role in tournaments, I want to remind everyone that ‘autohits’ (see Tuck's guide for more info on this) are illegal, and to play your characters realistically. It’s okay to take a hit in a fight – in fact, having to apply creative thinking and improvisation due to injuries you sustain in a combat encounter often makes it more fun to write, and more fun to read. And combat, like everything else in the game, is about having fun; should issues arise, the GMs are prepared to referee, but we would prefer not to interfere. Finally, most importantly of all, be nice to each other! As I said before, we’re all here to have fun – and though we all get emotionally involved in our characters and their experiences, it’s important not to let IC tensions bleed into OOC interactions. If you feel things are getting a bit too heated, be sure to take a step back, and if you need a hand in resolving things privately the GMs are of course here to help. That said, intentionally abusive or bigoted behaviour will not be tolerated. If you muck around, you will find out. Accidentally hurting someone’s feelings is something we’ll try to resolve as sensitively as possible; after all, these things happen. But there is a zero tolerance policy on racism, homophobia, transphobia, and bullying. Basically: just don’t be a prat.
  22. Profiles Topic | IC Topic | OOC Topic | Game Rules This is the dedicated OOC (out-of-character) topic for Ghosts of Bara Magna. Here, you can discuss anything and everything that relates to the game – ask questions, compliment each other's posts, advertise player run quest-lines, and more! The world is your very dry, very sandy oyster. You can also have OOC conversations in the official Discord server (link) if you prefer, although joining is not required in order to play and discussion is subject to that server’s rules. That said, please keep such discussions limited to here and/or the game's Discord server, in order to avoid crowding the IC (in-character) topic. For your convenience, the game's rules have been posted below.
  23. “Something’s changed. Don’t tell me you don’t feel it. The Iron Tribe have gone silent, the Skrall are pushing south, and my scouts are coming back with disturbing reports about Bone Hunters – they’re organised now, sweeping the desert in search grids. They say they have a new leader, some desert-walker they call the Ghost.” “Come now, Raanu, rangers have always been paranoid. Too much time out in the desert and men start to get superstitious; it’s the only way to survive. Surely you know better than to believe in ghost stories.” The Desert is a hostile, unforgiving place. This is why we built walls to keep it out. This is why we stay together, in our Tribes, for no one can survive the Desert alone. This is why we do not wage war against one another: We are already at war with the Desert. When our differences cannot be resolved with words, we solve them in the arena: a Glatorian stands to represent each village, and to the victor go the spoils. These matches have become a crucial element of our culture, with bouts fought just as often for sport as for peace-keeping, if not moreso. This is the purpose of our Arena Magna, the pride of Atero, a monument of civilisation that has stood for time untold against the Desert’s brutality. It stood when water still flowed through the Skrall River, and it stands still now that we are perched above falls of liquid sand. It is in the Arena Magna that we hold our annual Grand Tournament, where Glatorian and Agori meet in glorious combat to decide our Champion. The preparations have already begun: as we speak, Agori are hard at work in Atero, refurbishing the Arena, and the exhibition matches in villages across Bara Magna have begun. It is sure to be a spectacle to rival all that came before. This year, we fight in honour of our cousins in the Iron Tribe, who are unable to join us due to issues in their village. We wish them well, and look forward to their return in next year’s games. Anyone travelling from their home village for a match, whether to Atero or anywhere else, should make sure to take extra precautions on the roads. Remember: always travel in groups, and keep a regular watch at night. Though there is no immediate concern over the reports of unusual Bone Hunter activity, it is always wise to exert caution out in the Desert. Additionally, please refrain from Zesk-hunting during this time, as disrupting their habitats may result in difficulties on the roads due to unexpected migration. Worry not, though, as each village has guards and archers at the ready to deter any vermin that wander too close to our borders. With those announcements out of the way: Glatorian, Agori, gathered friends of all stripes… Let the Games begin! The Premise Ghosts of Bara Magna is an open sandbox TBRPG, designed to encourage player freedom and agency. Though there are plot threads, they’re just that: threads, for you to pull on as you see fit. I have as little idea of what the future has in store as you do, and I can’t wait to see what becomes of this world, how you grow it and improve it far beyond what my imagination could ever conjure. Players are also encouraged to create their own quests or plots, whether based on an established element of the world or something entirely new. I would recommend seeking out mod approval for these, so that we can provide access to elements of our own toolbox. In an ideal world you should be driving the story of the RPG at least as much as me, if not even moreso, and I want to make sure the tools to accomplish just that will be at your disposal. It's important to note that this is not necessarily Bara Magna as you know it; though I've aimed to stay true to the spirit of 2009, and what I believe to be the untapped potential of Bara Magna as a setting, this is not the canon Bara Magna. What does that mean in practice? Well, Agori and Glatorian have roughly human lifespans, leaning slightly longer than our own. This means that far more of the events of centuries past are long-forgotten; similarly, The Shattering as we know it cannot be assumed to have occurred. Not only is no one old enough to recall the cataclysmic event that left Bara Magna a wasteland, but Bara Magna should be assumed to be its own planet with its own history, not a fragment of a larger Spherus Magna. If the planets of the Solis Magna system were once connected, it was so long ago now that it hardly matters. Bota Magna and Aqua Magna do exist, but little is known about them beyond their clearly observable ocean and jungle coverage. This has implications closer to ground level, too: things you may recognise from canon, such as the Great Beings or the Dreaming Plague, are not necessarily the same as you remember them. All this to say, don't assume that you know what you're in for – after all, I hardly created this RPG just to rehash what we've already seen. The mysteries of Bara Magna are mysteries once more, with answers that may yet surprise you. The Staff At present, the staff are myself and @BULiK. Bulik can field any approval I can, apart from requests for Sand or Iron Tribe characters. Not much more to say on that, really. Character Creation Species There are two, and only two, species available to players: Glatorian, or Agori. As you may already know, Glatorian are the warriors of Bara Magna, and Agori the villagers, though the gap in their powers is much smaller than that between Matoran and Toa since Glatorian have neither Kanohi nor elemental powers. Their advantage over Agori is their size and their strength, the latter being far more diminutive and ill-equipped for fighting. It is for this reason that Agori fighting in the Arena do so in vehicles. Although both Glatorian and Agori make use of them, only Agori characters have an automatic entitlement to vehicles. As this risks an unfair advantage for Agori characters, I still urge you to request vehicle approval for your Glatorian if you wish, with the caveat that there is a maximum of one Glatorian vehicle per player, which hopefully will still be plenty. The balancing factor is cybernetic enhancements: though all of Bara Magna’s residents have some form of technological augmentation, those of the Glatorian are specialised for combat purposes. Each Glatorian character is allowed two cybernetic enhancements, to be approved by a mod. You don’t have to take advantage of any of these things – feel free to create a Glatorian without cybernetics, or an Agori without a vehicle. These are just the options that are available to you, and with mod approval, you can always choose to add them to your character at a later point (with sufficient IC explanation). Vorox and Zesk, which require specific approval (further details below), are considered a distinct species; however, for gameplay purposes, they follow the same entitlement rules as Glatorian and Agori, respectively. The Sisters of the Skrall are not available to play. Tribes The deserts of Bara Magna are unforgiving, and no one can survive them alone. With the exception of some freelancing Glatorian (who still have to take jobs from tribes, if they want food to eat and roofs over their heads), the people of Bara Magna largely belong to one of six tribes: Fire, Water, Ice, Rock, Jungle, and Iron. A seventh tribe, Sand, has long since devolved into barbarism; the Vorox and Zesk, as they are now known, display only animal intelligence. Split off from the Rock Tribe are the Agori known as the Bone Hunters, marauders who walk the desert in search of easy prey, raiding caravans and villages for resources and slaves. Though player creativity is encouraged, specific approval from myself will be required for any character belonging to the Iron or Sand Tribe, with approval being especially difficult to attain for the latter (for, I hope, fairly obvious reasons). These two tribes are otherwise unavailable for play at present. In addition to the initially available five, custom tribes are welcome. Simply submit the name of the tribe, their leader, their colours, and the basic details of their village (name, location, etc) for approval, and boom, you’ve got a Gravity tribe (if you try to canonise the Earth tribe, Kevin, I will come to your house and strike you dead). Profiles Each and every player must make one, and only one, post in the profiles topic. Within this one post, every character you play (barring special circumstances specifically approved by a mod) should have their own unique character profile. Each profile must include your character's species, appearance, equipment, cybernetics and/or vehicle, and a specific weakness. Obviously writing weaknesses is a right pain in the arse, but I encourage it not only for balancing but also as an important aspect of character development. A weakness doesn't have to be physical or combat-specific – it can be a bum knee or an old war wound just as easily as a phobia or a blinding ego. What's important is that you take the time to consider the flaws that hamper your character, and make them more human. Other optional profile sections, which I still heartily recommend, are your character's rough age, pronouns, gender, basic character traits, and a biography (if relevant). The Setting The Solis Magna System The Solis Magna system is the solar system in which Bara Magna resides. The life stage of its star, the eponymous Solis Magna, is unknown, as is the exact number of planets in the system. Bara Magna Bara Magna is the only known habitable planet in the Solis Magna system, orbited by two moons, Aqua and Bota Magna. The vast majority of Bara Magna’s landmass is desert, owing to some unknown disaster in the distant past; the ruins of the civilisation that came before, now known only as the Great Beings, are scattered across the planet, but most notably form the foundations of the cities Atero and Roxtus. Points of Interest Villages There are eight main settlements in the inhabited areas of Bara Magna: Atero is the capital city and the site of the Arena Magna, a structure dating back to the Great Beings themselves. It is the closest thing to a melting pot on Bara Magna, welcoming to Agori and Glatorian of all backgrounds, although tribe affiliation is still expected. Though freelance Glatorian exist, they are still compelled to make deals to fight for tribes in exchange for food and board, which are otherwise largely inaccessible. Atero is managed by a City Council of representatives from each of the Exhibition Match villages: Kyry of Vulcanus, Kirbold of Iconox, Tarduk of Tesara, and the typically truant Kirbraz of Tajun. Vulcanus is home to the Fire Tribe. The nearby lava flow is harnessed by the expert craftsmen of the village; with its heat, they forge weapons, armour, and mechanical components from the iron and exsidian they trade from Ferrum and Iconox. Vulcanus once had its own supply of Exsidian; however, it proved too dangerous to mine, and one of Raanu's first acts as Tribe Leader was to shut these mines down. The Arena Vulcanus, built atop the lava flow, is among the most impressive on Bara Magna, with various mechanical functions; for instance, the ability to let the lava flow into the arena, creating islands separated by streams of molten rock, an environmental hazard suited only to the most expert of Glatorian. The leader of Vulcanus, and by extension the Fire Tribe, is Raanu. Tajun is the home of the Water Tribe. Built in shaded crevasses below surface level, this village is the site of the largest known oasis on Bara Magna, providing its citizens with the most readily available source of water in the Wastelands. It’s this water that they trade with other villages, in exchange for the foodstuffs of Tesara and the metalwork of Vulcanus. It is also home to the Arena Tajun. Tajun is also currently home to the workshop of Celrys, the famed artificer. Tajun is led by Scodonius, who supports the village's thriving criminal element despite Berix being its face. The twin villages of Tesara are home to the Jungle Tribe. Built atop two gigantic tree stumps connected by a bridge, Tesara is surrounded by an incredible rarity on Bara Magna: a large swath of lush greenery. Thanks to this unique resource, Tesara is the sole export of non-animal agriculture and wood, which isn’t used for much construction outside Tesara itself as a result of its rarity. The Arena Tesara lies in the northmost reaches of the Green Zone, and just beyond that are the Hot Springs. Between the roots of its two great trees stands the statue known as the Lord of the Jungle, a lichen-covered giant believed to represent one of the eight Element Lords, quasi-religious figures who are believed to have created the biomes in which the villages lie. Tesara is led by the Merchants Guild and its Chairwoman, Linnea. Iconox is the village of the affluent Ice Tribe. Its location in the White Quartz Mountains gives the Ice Tribe alone access to Exsidian, the most valuable metal ore on Bara Magna. Mined using slave labour, Exsidian is used in all cybernetics and other complex mechanical parts due to its unique properties. Relations between the Ice Tribe and other villages are tense, due to the universal reliance on Exsidian and their purchasing of slaves from the Bone Hunters. Another source of suspicion is the notable lack of Bone Hunter raids on Ice Tribe caravans despite their value, believed by some to be due to their trade relations. Iconox and its Tribe are led by Metus, who was buoyed to power by his discovery of the very Exsidian vein that has made Iconox so powerful in recent years. Ferrum, located at the far end of Iron Canyon, is home to the Iron Tribe. Despite its apparent proximity to Vulcanus, which has always helped the booming trade between the two villages – which trade iron and mining equipment, in a symbiotic loop – Iron Canyon is extremely dangerous to traverse, near impossible for those unfamiliar with the safest route. Trade with Vulcanus is currently halted as a result of this, with only the Iron Tribe’s traders – who haven’t been seen in some weeks – able to safely navigate it. This has also held back any outreach to discern the issues currently facing Ferrum. The leader of Ferrum and the Iron Tribe is the Agori Somnii. The city of Roxtus is the current home of the militaristic Rock Tribe. Though the Rock Tribe is known to the rest of Bara Magna only by its males, the Skrall, these are only the military wing of the tribe. The actual leaders are the females, known as the Sisters of the Skrall; they possess alleged psionic abilities, and are feared and hated by the males who serve them. Male Skrall are not entitled to names – unless they earn a title through some extraordinary act, they will be known only as Skrall. Additionally, Roxtus is not the original home of the Skrall; previously, they resided in the Skrall Fortress, north of the Black Spike Mountains, until they were pushed South by an unknown enemy. This fact is unknown to all outside the Rock Tribe, as the Skrall have led the rest of Bara Magna to believe that they are expanding South, not retreating. Like Iconox, Roxtus makes use of slave labour, supplied by the Bone Hunters. The Sisters of the Skrall live apart from the men, residing within Skull Mountain, immediately adjacent to Roxtus; none but the Sisters themselves are allowed entry, barring the occasions on which they select a male for breeding purposes. Such men return broken and mentally feeble, and are shunned by their peers. So great is the dishonour of laying with a Sister that those who do so are forbidden even from calling themselves Skrall, and are forced into exile. The Skrall military is led by Tirveus, and the Sisters by Visena. The Bone Hunter Stronghold, located in the eastern reaches of the wastelands, houses the greatest concentration of Bone Hunters. Other long and short-term encampments exist in order to enable their movements around the desert, but the Stronghold is, for all intents and purposes, their home base. Chief among these smaller outposts is the Gatherers’ Hideout, located beneath the Dark Falls south of Roxtus, and just north of Creep Canyon. The Bone Hunters, in fact, traditionally refer to themselves as the Gatherers, with ‘Bone Hunters’ having begun as a pejorative before entering common parlance. Though they operate in small groups with individual, disconnected leaders, a mysterious newcomer called the Ghost is attempting to unify them under his banner, with the aid of his right-hand man, Crucius. Smaller villages are also scattered around Bara Magna, though these are often subject to Bone Hunter raids, such settlements being difficult to maintain in the brutal Wastelands. Natural Landmarks The Wastelands are the mapped area of Bara Magna, from the Black Spike Mountains in the North to the Sea of Liquid Sand in the South. Though this stretch of desert is, for the most part, barren and desolate, there are a few more hospitable areas from which the Agori settlements have grown. Little vegetation grows in the desert, Thornax plants being the most common exception, and the wildlife is frequently hostile. The Dunes of Treason are one of the largest regions in the Wastelands, bordered by the White Quartz Mountains to the west, the Green Zone to the north, and the Skrall River to the east, and stretching as far south as Tajun. This part of the desert is almost entirely composed of sand dunes, punctuated by some rocky outcrops, and is almost entirely uninhabitable. The Eastern Canyons (Creep Canyon & Iron Canyon) are perhaps Bara Magna's most hostile locations, thanks in large part to being the primary habitat of the Skopio: colossal insectoid beasts, who react aggressively to any intrusion upon their territory. If a traveller happens to be lucky enough to avoid them, they're still likely to fall victim to the Bone Hunters who patrol the area, or perhaps simply become lost amongst the twisting paths – infamously difficult to traverse without an experienced navigator – there to die of thirst. Iron Canyon is especially treacherous due to its extremely narrow paths being ill-suited for vehicles. Sandray Canyon is a smaller canyon located south-east of Tajun, named after the creatures who inhabit the Sea of Liquid Sand. Though not as treacherous as the others, there have been sightings of Skopio, so caution is still advised. The Sea of Liquid Sand is an ocean-like expanse of the same fluid sand that flows through the Skrall River. The Skrall River flows through the Wastelands; although it's known to have once been entirely made up of water, throughout living memory it has been a stream of liquid sand from the foot of the Dark Falls south until it enters the Sea of Liquid Sand. The White Quartz Mountains are a range of snow-capped peaks, rich in Exsidian ore. The main landmarks within the mountain range are Iconox, Elbow Peak (a canyon flanked by two mountain ridges) and Gatherer's Ridge, a line of mountains stretching further east than the rest, into the northern border of the Green Zone. The Green Zone, sometimes called the Tesara Green Zone, is an area of dense vegetation in the north-west of the Wastelands. Home to Tesara and the Hot Springs, it is the only source of wood and non-animal agriculture for the other villages. The Black Spike Mountains are the southernmost stretch of a large mountain range north of the Wastelands. The area is volcanic and unstable, and honeycombed with tunnels that appear to have been dug by the Great Beings. The treacherous terrain, and the presence of the Skrall, have prevented proper mapping of the mountain range and the regions beyond. Culture The Skrall Due to their isolation from the other Tribes, the Rock Tribe military has developed its own unique culture, based primarily around winning honour through feats of martial prowess, and thereby demonstrating Skrall superiority. All Skrall are nameless by default, receiving names only when they have proved themselves worthy. Though these worthy Skrall can be stripped of their names if they dishonour themselves, there is no greater dishonour than to be chosen for bedding by one of the Sisters of the Skrall. The Sisters are treated with superstition and fear, due in large part to their psychic abilities; it is using these unnatural abilities that they craft the cybernetics used by the Skrall, and through them that they detect and choose the few fertile male Skrall for procreation. Upon their return, these Skrall (psychologically broken by their experience) are banished from the Rock Tribe, and stripped of the right even to call themselves Skrall. The Sand Tribe Little is known of the exact history of the Sand Tribe, except that they were once as intelligent as other Agori and Glatorian. For centuries now, however, they have been little more than animals, moving through the desert in packs and communicating with clicks and other strange noises that bare only the most tangential resemblance to language. Efforts have been made by some particularly determined anthropologists to establish communications with them, proving in the process that they still retain some basic form of intelligence; however, the people of the Wastelands still view the Vorox and the Zesk as beasts and vermin, respectively. The Great Beings The Great Beings (dubbed as such by the Agori) are a long-extinct, technologically advanced race of four-eyed humanoids who previously resided on Bara Magna. Their ruins and technology continue to be of great value to the Agori; both Atero and Roxtus are built upon the remains of Great Being cities, and modern cybernetics and vehicles would not exist if not for unearthed Great Being technologies and the major breakthroughs to which they led. Their appearance is known to the Agori primarily from statues in Atero and at other Great Being sites, although the remains of long-dead Great Beings have occasionally been discovered in decades and centuries past. The Element Lords The six Element Lords are quasi-religious figures of myth. Each one is believed to have brought life to the Wastelands by creating a biome in which the Agori now live, and the six largest tribes (Rock, Jungle, Fire, Water, Ice and Sand) are named after them. A statue of the Lord of the Jungle can be found between the base of the two great trees in Tesara, a roughly humanoid figure with no head and unusually long arms, which twist upon themselves like vines and plunge into the soil amidst the trees’ roots. Though overgrown with moss and flowers, the Lord of the Jungle is still treated as something of a religious monument. Trade The Tribes and villages of the Wastelands trade various valuable commodities with one another; though some are obvious, such as wood and foodstuffs from Tesara, water from Tajun, and iron from Ferrum, others are more unusual. Vulcanus, for instance, is the home of industry in the Wastelands; although it once had its own Exsidian mines, it now forges weapons, cybernetics and mechanical components using Iconox’s Exsidian and Ferrum’s iron, and trades these for both necessities and the materials required to produce more. Atero’s status as the capital city of Bara Magna is not just the result of its high walls and central position; every safe trade route in Bara Magna, as shown on the map, converges upon the city, leading to its bustling marketplace. Though the city is at its busiest around the time of the Great Tournament, merchants provide plenty of business for its inns throughout the rest of the year. Exsidian is by far the most valuable metal in Bara Magna; its unique properties make it ideal for cybernetics, circuitry and complex mechanical components. Though once provided by Vulcanus, before its mines were shut down by Raanu, the relatively recent discovery by Metus of a vein in the White Quartz Mountains has quickly made Iconox an economic powerhouse. The slave trade, distasteful as it is, plays an important part in the economy of Bara Magna; after all, Iconox’s Exsidian is mined using slaves provided by the Bone Hunters. Roxtus is also reliant on slave labour, and both it and Iconox have backdoor trade routes with the Hunters. It’s through these that the Bone Hunters receive Exsidian from Iconox, which they provide to Roxtus in exchange for Skrall supplies, weapons and cybernetics. The Bone Hunters don’t only trade in slaves, however; perhaps even more lucrative to them is the trade of Spice, a psychoactive drug. The ideal source of unrefined Spice is Skopio bone marrow; however, impure Spice can also be found in the soil in and around Creep Canyon, particularly in those areas in which Skopio reside. It is for this reason that the Eastern Canyons are their hunting grounds. The Rules If you’re familiar with the absolutely iconic work that is Tuck’s Guide to Common Sense, the majority of rules are helpfully outlined there. However, for convenience: Every player must make one (and only one) post in the profiles topic, and update this with the profiles of each of their characters. PCs are to be original characters. This doesn’t mean you can’t copy your favourite Ryan Gosling silent stare role, but rather, that you can’t play characters from canon. When writing out of character in a post, you should preface what you say with ‘OOC:’. When writing in character, you should preface with ‘IC:’, the name of your character, and their current location. Furthermore, when possible, out of character discussions should be kept within the Discussion Topic or the RPG Discord server (link). Given that PvP will play an important role in tournaments, I want to remind everyone that autohits are illegal, and to play your characters realistically. It’s okay to take a hit in a fight – in fact, having to apply creative thinking and improvisation due to injuries you sustain in a combat encounter often makes it more fun to write, and more fun to read. And combat, like everything else in the game, is about having fun; should issues arise, the GMs are prepared to referee, but we would prefer not to interfere. Finally, most importantly of all, be nice to each other! As I said before, we’re all here to have fun – and though we all get emotionally involved in our characters and their experiences, it’s important not to let IC tensions bleed into OOC interactions. If you feel things are getting a bit too heated, be sure to take a step back, and if you need a hand in resolving things privately the GMs are of course here to help. That said, intentionally abusive or bigoted behaviour will not be tolerated. If you muck around, you will find out. Accidentally hurting someone’s feelings is something we’ll try to resolve as sensitively as possible; after all, these things happen. But there is a zero tolerance policy on racism, homophobia, transphobia, and bullying. Basically: just don’t be a prat.
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