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Realms of Aether (Magitech Fantasy Setting using Trinity Rules)


Krul
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Realms of Aether

Welcome to the Aether universe, and to Aerth which it is similar to our world in geography, but quite different in other ways.  This is a world of magic, though it's advanced magic

Technology: Hardtech = No (or very little), Biotech = Yes 

Aether

  • Where in our universe, the emptiness of space is simply space, in this universe, it is filled with Aether, a psychoactive element that reacts to dreams and thoughts, from which Magic, Divinity and Corruption are born.  It is pretty deadly for mortals most of the time, which is why aether ships or teleportation are used to traverse the worlds found within the Aether, but it also means that all planets and moons are capable of supporting life, with a few changes caused by mortal dreams and divine action.  The aether has given birth to some significant differences in this universe in comparison to our own.
  • Generally, range does matter with regards to Aether, it is most reactive to those closest to it, but not always, sometimes it is the strength of the desire or the number of those who wish it that can affect the Aether.  This is generally how divinities, mages, champions and talents manifest, since with enough need or desperation, the impossible can become possible.

Divinity
NOTE: In essence, every power or edge with the term Quantum, is altered to Divine with regards to Divinities, they aren't actually channeling quantum, they are channeling divine power to make reality bend to their dominion.

A Divinity is nonphysical, they are born of mortal interaction with the Aether and they are created using the nova character template, but can not have any physical attributes or purely physical edges/powers like quantum leap or molecular chameleon (unless they have the bestow only tag, or entirely personal, powers such as flight or teleport).  A divinity can be born any number of ways, they may or may not have been mortal before, they might be born of the interactions of another divinity with mortals, the possibilities are myriad.

  • For attributes, they start with 1 dot in each mental and social attribute, and 15 dots they can put into any of them up to 5 dots.  They also do not have a approach, instead, they gain 3 mega dots they can put wherever they want.
  • Ethos: This is in essence, Society for gods, their priests must belong to the society.  A group of divinities who share an Ethos, becoming a Pantheon.
  • They also get a  High Priest who is created as a baseline human, except with a Patron of 3 for free, which represents the Divinity. 
    • Regalia: The Divinity's High Priest (and only their High Priest) can use Q-tech that the Divinity creates, though they draw on the Divinity's Divine Energy rather then their General Pool power such artifacts.  While the name is Divine Regalia, it is, in essence, identical to Q-Tech in terms of how it works, except that it works for the High Priest rather then the Divinity
    • Divine Power: The Divinity can buy Divine(quantum) Edges for their High Priest, though it is the Divinity who has the merits, not their High Priest, they extend these merits whoever their High Priest is gains these merits, and if they should choose a different High Priest, for any reason, these merits shift to them.   The Divinity must already have purchased the merit for themselves, which means it must be within their domain, and add the High Priest tag to the Edge.  Some of the more physical edges, however, with the exception of Slowed Aging (A divinity is immortal, and thus always has 5 dots of this merit) can not purchased.
      • NOTE: Some divinities desire to extend such merits to all of their Priests, doing this multiplies the experience cost of the Edge by 10.  They must have also purchased it for themselves and their High Priest.
  • Being Spiritual beings, they are always non-physical, immortal and invisible, though they can manifest a spiritual avatar within a dedicated temple/shrine (a priest is required to deticate a temple), allowing them to be seen and to speak directly to their followers.  They can be considered to have the following powers/edges innately by their nature regardless of divine rank, and certain powers can allow them more agency within the world.
    • Slow Aging •••••
    • Phasing •••• (Immaterial Only, Power Lock)
    • Cloak •••• (Power Lock*, Broadband, Chemical, Sonic)  {If within a Temple deticated to them or their pantheon, a deity can deactivate this power selectively or completely as they wish, outside their temples it remains constantly Power Locked}
  • They begin with a Divine Rank of 1 (which replaces and works similar to Quantum ), and possess a domain, all powers they purchase must have some relation to their domain.  Quantum Agent (which should be considered Divine Agent) is always considered related to their domain, though the Agent created must have some features or nature similar to their domain.
    • Domains:  A Divinity begins with a single Domain, and can buy new Domains at Divine Ranks of 3, 6 and 9.  The first Domain is free, each additional domain costs the same amount of experience that a dot of quantum would at that same Divine Rank [12 xp for the 2nd domain, 24 for the third and 4th domains]..   All powers and Divine(quantum) Edges possessed or purchased must be related to their domain(s), powers of a physical nature must have the bestow only tag, since their spiritual nature makes them non-physical.  
    • Divine Rank replaces Quantum Rating
    • Divine Energy replaces Quantum Points (but works  slightly differently as indicated below)
    • General Pool: While a deity has their own pool of divine exactly as a nova does, which can be used for whatever the Divinity wishes, they can also have a General Pool of divine energy equal to their Divine Pool x Follower rating that can only be used to answer prayers, it can not be used by the Divinity for anything else.  These are pretty much automatic, based on the divine powers, though the deity decides how prayer's to them are answered, with a priority of High Priest <- Priest <- Worshipers.  In other words, if their worshipers can call upon this power, so can the priests or high priest, and if their priests can call upon it, so can their high priest, but if they restrict it to high priest, only their high priest can call upon it.
      • It also regenerates at a daily rate rather then after each scene, and is not affected by the Deities activity rate, but they can chose to also block activity or set aside a portion of their General Pool for certain blessings or curses. 
      • As a Side Effect of this ability, unless it is somehow blocked (not impossible, but difficult), a deity can always hear a prayer and answer it with their general pool no matter where they are.
    •  EXAMPLE: The deity of Weather has the Elemental Mastery Weather power and  chooses to bless farmers who ask for rain, though they decide to only allow their Priests to make the request, to keep their pool from being drained too rapidly.  They also allow their High Priest, and only their High Priest to call upon this power to punish those who displease them, and call lightning down from the sky.  Farmer Joe, however, has angered them with his actions, and thus no prayers  with regards to his farm will have any affect, for that matter, after Farmer Joe curses the deity, they become more angry, and delicate a portion of their general pool to the purpose of allowing no rain to fall on farmer Joe's field each day.  Farmer Joe turns to irrigation to keep his crops alive, best hope he doesn't anger a god of water next.   
  • Nexus = A Nexus can be considered the deities body for the sake of range of their powers.  Basically, their priests/temples can be considered their Nexus.  While the deity can move beyond this range, it usually means that they can't do anything other then observe or answer prayers, or set up blessings/curses, though this can be useful in its own way.  A group of worshipers gathered to make a prayer or petition is also consider a Nexus, in the right circumstances.
  • SIDE BAR:  While Divinities are generally benevolent,  at least toward their followers, Demonkind have similar powers, but are malicious in nature born of malice and nighmares, rather then hope and dreams like the Divinities.  Demons, however have one major weakness not possessed by Divinities, that they are physical beings who can be killed, though it can be a difficult thing to do.  What is worse, however, is that demons can warp mortals into what are called Aberrations, or areas with Corruption.  Weirdly, Divinities can often do little for Aberrations, but certain Mage's who focus on the school of Wizardry can.
  • Starting XP to build your Divinity: 150 XP, starting Divine Rank is limited to 5.
  • See the Divine Rules under Realms of Aether Club to design your deity

Mages

  • Magic, it is believed by mortals and supported by Divinities, is a gift to mortals from the Source of All, the essence of Aether, and parent of the Divine.  While Divinities are more powerful, they are limited by the rules of their nature, some of which exist to preserve mortal free will.  Mages use the Psion/Psiad template, altered as indicated below
  • Mages can be agents, friends or allies of the gods, but they are not servants or followers.  While a Mage can work with a Divinity, they can not be priests or even worshipers, their power belongs to universe, not to the individuality that is a Divinity.
    • NOTE: A mage with at least 1 dot in a vitakinesis mode, or 3 dots in a biokinesis mode is biologically immortal.  This means that long term relationships are only possible with other immortals, which is why the most powerful mages withdraw from society to live within their towers.  Sometimes, Divinities and other Mages are their only real friends.
  • All races produce Mages, but not all Mages are the same.
  • Psi = Magic
    • A Mage starts with a Magic Rating of 2, similar to a Psion, unless they chose Wizardry as their focus, in which case they sacrifice their extra dot of attribute points for a Magic rating of 3.  You can not start with a Magic rating higher then 5, even with XP
    • Arcane Awareness replaces Attunement, but otherwise works the same.
  • Psi Pool = Mana
    • Mana is the same for a Mage as Psi would be for a Psion
    • A mage with the Drain power from Fundamentals who is close enough, can attempt to drain power directly from Aether if they are beyond a planet's limits or on a planet that has some Aether that has yet to become physical to fill their mana pool, each success regains 1 point of Mana.  Also, many planets have ley lines that can also be used in this way, though a mage refuels their mana naturally with rest as well.
  • A Mage has a Primary, Secondary, Neutral and Inferior Focus.  Modes in their Primary Focus can reach 5 dots, Secondary Focus can reach 4 dots, Neutral Focus can reach 3 dots, and Inferior Focus 2 dots.  Focuses are indicated as below
    • Wizardry [Quantakinesis & Teleportation] - Mages who chose this is their primary focus are called Wizards
    • Sorcery [Electrokinesis & Psychokinesis] - Mages who chose this as their primary focus are called Sorcerers
    • Thaumaturgy [Biokinesis & Vitakinesis] - Mages who choose this as their primary focus are called Thaumaturges
    • Mentalism [Clairvoyance & Telepathy] - Mages who choose this as their primary focus are called Mentalists
  • Starting Dots
    • Primary Focus: 5 dots to put into Modes, must put at least 2 dots into each aptitude.
    • Secondary Focus: 3 dots to put into Modes
    • Neutral & Inferior Focus: 2 dots to put into Modes
  • Archmage: Once they gain a Magic rating of 6, a Mage can seek to become an archmage within one of their two focus schools, and can now purchase up to the 6th dot in modes of their chosen aptitude.  Before they can purchase a 6th dot, they must have at least 5 dots within that mode, at least 3 dots in one other mode  within the same aptitude.  Once they have chosen which aptitude to master, that is the only one they can raise beyond 5 dots.  
    • When the archmage has mastered all dots within their chosen aptitude, meaning 6 dots in each and having purchase the Archmage (Proxy) tier power within that aptitude, as well as having gained a Magic rating of 7 and gaining a final 7th dot in every mode within their aptitude, they have truly mastered their chosen focus, and their deeper understanding of mana now allows them to raise their power in other modes.  They gain a +1 to how many dots they can reach in their Secondary, Neutral and even Inferior focus.  They can also now purchase the 6th dot in various modes within their other focus school, but they can only ever have 1 archmage(proxy) level power.
    •  An Archmage has transcended the normal limits of magic and is simply called an Archmage rather then a Wizard, Sorcerer, Thaumturge or Mentalist.
  • Mages can buy any edges a Psiad or Psion could, but they can only purchase Strong Mode for modes outside their primary focus, they can purchase Favored Aptitude for any aptitude that is not their neutral or inferior focus, and Favored Mode for any Mode they have dots in.  
  • Cooperative Magic: This works like combining psychic powers, from the aptitude and modes section of the Aeon book.  The Mage chooses which of the two enhanced effects she offers from her Primary focus to the group magic, she can offer either of them, but not both.  
  • Starting XP to Build your Mage Further: 150, starting Magic Rating is limited to 5, XP costs indicated below
    • Primary Focus: 5 per dot
    • Primary Focus above 6: 10 per dot
    • Secondary Focus: 7 per dot
    • Neutral Focus: 9  per dot
    • Inferior Focus: 13 per dot
    • Everything else, use Psion xp costs
  • Origin Path: Mageborn  
    • Most mages come into their power late to mid twenties, or even later after exposure to the Aether, or are activated though some arcane artifact awakening them to new powers, much rarer are the Mageborn.  Their power is instinctive in their early years, they only use it to protect themselves and their family, and generally in the early years it only manifests as exceptional luck, but eventually the Mageborn begins to realize their power.  They often grow skilled at hiding it from others and keeping it themselves and their family, some afraid of what it will mean, though some embrace it more then others.  In some parts of the world, Mageborn are considered blessed and in others cursed, and Mage guilds often want to study them, though some are more protective then others.
    • Example Connections: Helpful Lawman, Loyal Family Member, School or Mage College Friends, Social Connection, Street Gang
    • Skills: Athletics, Culture, Empathy, Persuasion
    • Edges: Always Prepared, Covert, Danger Sense, Enhanced Attunement, Favored Aptitude, Skilled Liar, Strong Mode
       

Champion

  • Champions come into being when a baseline mortal directly exposed to Aether somehow manages to keep from being destroyed by the Aether, internalizing it instead.  Now, it is the mortal's will and desires that shape their new essence, and the power changes them greatly.  They are unbound by the natures of Divinity or Magic, their inner self now contains a shard of Aether that allows them to transcend their former mortal limits.  In essence, they imagined themselves better, and desired perfect control over their 'self' and so it became.
    • Lifespan: Champions have a few powers that also increase their lifespan, mainly superior recovery, which generally can be considered to slow aging by about 50% for each dot.  Without anything else interfering in some way or another, a human champion with maximum superior recovery is looking at a lifespan of 300 years.  Certain artifacts or implants could increase this, but that's beyond the scope of the Champion's natural powers.
  • Create the Champion as you would any other character, then add the Superior Template
  • Starting XP to Build your Champion Further: 150

Talents

  • Talents are unchanged, though hard to recognize, Divinities and powerful Mages are aware of them and know of them as another gift to mortals to preserve free will.
  • Starting XP to Build your Talent Further: 150

Races

  • Generally, races are created as an Origin path, just about any race is suitable, if you have an idea that can fit into an origin path, suggest it to your GM (me) and we'll make sure it works.  Some races might be able or need special edges to work, such as a winged race, but that's fine, I'm sure we can find some edges that work.

Technology

  • Magitech: If it's in the trinity book as Biotech, it can be purchased from various Mage's guilds, and the world does have a version of it, icluding Aetherships (though a Leviathon is considered a Worldship, and needs a few Mages to operate properly, as well as usually have at least one temple built into it to allow Divine assistance against Demon's within the Aether), though Tolerance is important to keep an eye on, since just about all types of biotech has tolerance requirements , and Aether can be a lot more hostile then space in some ways.  Also, a deity of Technology, Innovation and/or Knowledge has things to offer here as well.
    • Yes, this means biovargs and energy weapons are avalible, if you get them from the mage's guilds.  
    • Implants and Augmentions are also sometimes possible, from Divinity's or Mages, but a Champion or a Talent can sometimes find ways to get or develop these.

The World

So, folks are now wondering about the nature of the world they find themselves, well, as my players, that depends upon you.  The world of Aether has vaguely similar history to our own (at least the Trinity version of our history), though with some significant differences here and there, as you folks like.  If you want to play in a city under siege by demons who have called for Divine intervention and birthed a few gods from the Aether, that's fine, if you want to be a Worldship roaming the galaxy, that's also fine, if you prefer to play in some Arcane city, ruled and controlled by Mages, that's also fine.  At least if I get enough player interest.  So, indicate not just what you want to play, but where you would like to play. 

Edited by Krul
Added in Mage XP costs
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interested will have to brainstorm the rest for a bit 

I am leaning mage for this

I don't know why but I am getting a strong Jack Vance Dying Earth/Micheal Moorcock Eternal Champion feel going on in my head...I am intrigued and think I wish to explore this in detail...

when inspiration strikes... you gotta do it

I will be playing Orionthi , a mageborn wizard of the Varona, an elder race now fading from the universe...

 

Edited by Nina
added who I will be in this epic
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I have been awake for an extended period at this stage, soi I'm having problems internalising this. I am preliminarily interested, but will get back to you once I've had a chance to get some sleep. I would likely be leaning God. 😛

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Divinities &  Domains, Demon's & Aspects - Divinities have Domains, Demon have Aspects, these are areas that a Demon is focused in, they are always things that Divinities never embody, such as Tyranny, Malice, Lust, Hatred, Torture, Sin, etc.  That doesn't mean that divinities can't have less pleasant domains such as Battle, Blood, Conflict, Desire (which can include but generally has greater range then just lust, a deity focused on such things is more likely to have domains such as Pleasure or Delight), Punishment & War for example, but they generally focus on the more positive and hopeful aspects of their domains, in blood there is life, Battle against evil and tyranny, punishment of the wicked or unjust, desire a better world, etc.  

  • NOTE: A PC who has an NPC ally in a divinity should buy them as a Patron, not as a contact, a contact would be far more likely to be a priest who follows a particular divinity.  This should be purchased on the sheet as Patron Deity: Name, Domain(s), Relationship.  While Mages usually have a more equitable relationship with deities due to their own powers being more then enough, talents and champions can and do serve the deity as followers, though not as priests, the nature of their own powers makes such connections difficult.

Demon Lords & Warlocks: Demon Lords are demons who embody a concept who have managed to gather a group of demons under them, as well as made a connection to some part of the he and bound them by power and corruption to their service.  Warlocks, mortals who make pacts with demons, are close to being an inverse of priests, though they only get powers if the demon or demon lord has the bestow tag for the power, at it's completely up the the demon's 'whim' if they complete the bargain, but they are willing to bargain with mortals as in their view most Warlocks are foolish and easy to influence.  Why is is this important?  Because if they manage to corrupt an area and it's people enough, it becomes dark and twisted and the realms beneath the surface find space begins to twist and corrupted aether begins to become the norm in such places, birthing more demons(think Diablo).  

Edited by Krul
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So, after some discussion with players (specifically SalmonMax, thanks for the questions Max, very useful in fleshing that part out) regarding playing a divinity, though of you working on divine characters, I've made a few changes to them, see divine rules under the Realms of Aether club for details, I'll be making a few changes to Mages, though not quite as many, at least regarding experience costs, which I added in above.  Talents and Champions are unchanged, and I don't see much need to change them.  Also, races, they can be easily worked with a few edges, bioware or augmentations as innate traits, rather then a path, let me know if you have a good idea, I prefer the rule of cool in that regard.

 

Edited by Krul
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