Myy good friend and fellow game designer Ralph Mazza contacted me soon after I announced the creation of the Faelands Forums. He asked me if I had a Google+ Community. Ralph’s a busy man, and he pointed out to me that he really doesn’t have the time to visit forums anymore.
I hadn’t considered using Google+ more than I already have. I have my sites set up to post to it, but setting up a community there never occurred to me. So I took a few minutes and set one up. It’s going to take a little tweaking to make it look nice, but its ready to go.
This is my invitation to you to join us at the new Faelands Google+ Community. So far the people who have joined are:
- Julia Ellingboe, Independent Writer and Game Designer. She’s a lovely woman who I had the good chance to meet at Gen Con for a demonstration of her game, The Fisherman’s Wife. It helped whet my appetite for story games.
- Marcy Ganow, owner of Tabletop Adventures. I met Marcy through the Game Publishers Association and been impressed with her ever since.
- Ralph Mazza, owner of Ramshead Publishing. I met Ralph at Gen Con back in 2002. He had just come out with Universalis and I had more fun during that half hour demonstration than in 2 years of playing Dungeons & Dragons. He always has something interesting to say.
The Forums are a Cool Place to Be.
One of the things I want to do is create a community of gamers and fantasy enthusiasts for the Faelands. Games cannot be made in a vacuum. That especially goes for roleplaying games. We need You. We need your feedback to tell us if this project is headed in the right direction. So, please feel free to comment on the articles and make yourself known on the brand new forums.
Help Keep the Forums Spam Free
The main reason it’s taken over a year to open up the Faelands is so that I could configure the site to let you in, but to keep out spammers. Please forgive the necessity of registering on the site to use the forums or make a comment, but this is to help keep out spammers. Please, come on in and meet others that are also interested in the Faelands,
Dragons are the oldest of the Fae Races, and one of the few to achieve Actualization – the transformation into a true race.
Common Locations: Anywhere in the Faelands, but primarily where an abundant supply of food is found.
Faeries love to imitate physical beings, usually with their own personal touches like wings and fire breath. Ancient Faerie History tells us that the first forms copied were dinosaurs and lizards. Fae that bred with these mortal animals produced Changeling offspring that retained much of the Fae parent’s attributes. This changed dragons from a Faerie fantasy into an actual race.
Fae will still take on dragon form, but it is a rare occurrence. This is because the dragons have taken on an “attitude” as the oldest of the existing races and will not allow a “fake” into their clans. Without family support, a Fae dragon Glamour avatar will often unravel shortly after it realizes it really isn’t real. Continue reading
Faeries are a set of supernatural creatures that appear in a wide variety of shapes. They are legendary for the bright whimsy and dark terror that they bring with them.
Also Known As: Fairies, Fae, Fey, The Good Folk, The Gentry, The Sidhe
Common Locations: Everywhere in the Faelands.
Pureborn: The Unformed
All Pureborn Fae begin their existence in the same manner — as an invisible disembodied spirit. No one is exactly certain how they come into existance. One popular theory is that new Faeries are unconsciously created by the Dreaming Ones. The new Faerie has consciousness, but no form. In the early stage of its existence, it does little but float about and observe the life around it. This may go on for years, until it has learned to use its Glamour to communicate with others. Then it may project an image that it can use to interact with others. Common images are Wisps, Ghosts, or Sprites. This practice of projecting insubstantial images has encouraged the uninformed to confuse the Fae with the spirits of the dead. Continue reading
A Faekiller blade is a dreaded weapon of assassination designed to bring Final Death to faeries. The weapon is alchemical in nature, and is made to enhance iron’s magic-disrupting properties.
Ordinary Iron is also capable of killing a Fey, but is necessary to cut or otherwise wound the victim. The mere touch of a Faekiller blade will often leave burns. The alchemical process for making the blade leaves the iron in a brittle state. Sometimes there may even be visible cracks in the metal. This makes the iron unsuitable as a weapon of combat. Because of this, a weaponsmith will usually make special daggers from the metal. They take advantage of the iron’s brittleness by designing the blade to break off inside a victim’s body, allowing the iron to continue poisoning them.
There are rumors that a weaponsmith has overcome the problem with brittleness, and made a small number of Faekillers made into combat-capable swords. These True Faekillers are extremely rare and expensive, due to their questionably legal nature.
The Other Abraham Lincoln
The primary reasoning behind alternate timelines is that for every event that occurs in our timeline, other realities form in which the alternatives occur. Let’s said that Joe turned left while going to work this morning. Alternate realities with their own “Joe” could have one where he turned right and was late to work, or continued straight ahead and died in a car crash in the intersection.
Ideally, a graph of the timelines should follow a model of fractal geometry. Large branches sprout smaller branches, and those would have even smaller branches, ad infinitum. However, there have been gaps found in this perfect fractal model. When Project Bifrost attempted to map branches produced by differences in the lives of a number of historical figures, they found realities where those people had not existed at all. Instead, a temporal “stand-in” had replaced them in that alternate reality.
A classic illustration of this is the life of Abraham Lincoln. Recon teams sent to various branches formed during the Civil War discovered the existence of a second “Abraham Lincoln” in those realities where Lincoln’s personal history varied. Abe II’s history closely followed the Honest Abe we are all familiar with, but photographs from that time show him as an entirely different person.
This case and others like it have helped to form the Theory of Prime Reality. It is not very popular among the more practical-minded scientists at the Project, since it seems to imply such a thing as Destiny exists. It states that there is actually one “true” reality that weaves through the branches of time and it is found through those people whose lives do not produce temporal copies of themselves, but stand-ins.
What is Death to an immortal? To the Fey, it is Sleep.
Like all spirit creatures, the Fey have no need for sleep or dreams. But they watch mortals embrace the “little death” night after night. The loss of consciousness and control fascinates them, since it is such a foreign concept.
Fey that have created physical bodies for themselves can understand and enjoy sleep. Dreaming provides them with an experience very close to the mortal ability to create new things.
Ancient Fey that have grown tired of life may choose to undergo the Final Sleep. This is not death as mortals know it, but a change in their state of being that will allow the Fey to sleep and dream for decades. To enter the Final Sleep, they become part of the landscape. Which part depends on what ancient element the Fey feels closest to: Air, Earth, Fire, or Water.
The Earth aligned Fey (Gnomes) will often become boulders, part of a mountain, or a patch of rich soil. Air aligned (Sylphs) and Fire aligned (Salamanders) will appear to dissipate as they become one of their element. Water aligned (Undines) will often join a single body of water or create their own. In these forms, they sleep and dream. Their bodies preserve the existence of the Feylands. Their Glamour reaches out and makes their dreams real, making the Feylands an ever-changing and interesting place to live.
Collectively, they are known as the Dreaming Ones. You do not want to wake them.
Jenny Greenteeth. Painting by Wilhelm Kotabinski (1849-1921) Sourced Wikipedia Commons; Public Domain
Jenny Greenteeth is a water Fey known to drown her victims and sometimes devour them. She is consistently described as having long hair, green skin, and sharp teeth. However, her appearance will vary between that of a child, a winsome beauty, or horrific hag. The theory is that this is to make it easier to lure her prey into the water and then paralyze them with fear. Her favorite prey is young children. Her favorite killing areas are bodies of water where duckweed grows.
Hunts for Jenny are a common occurrence when there have been a number of drownings or missing children in an area. She has not been captured or destroyed since she is a creature of opportunity rather than habit. She remains in spirit form and creates temporary bodies with Glamour only when hunting a victim. She has always vanished when the searchers for her come and then manifests in another body of water.
The Sight is a psychic ability that occurs naturally in some people. It allows them to see things as they really are, revealing fey and other spirits that are trying to hide, as well as see through Glamour.
Animals may also possess this ability. Does your dog or cat react to things you cannot see? Then there is something there.
Some entities may react badly to a person with The Sight. They do not like being spied upon. Continue reading
Have you ever noticed the flutter of a butterfly’s wing out of the corner of your eye, and when you turned to look the butterfly was gone?
If you have, you may have witnessed a Fey hiding itself with Glamour. This is a special magic common to almost all of the Faerie folk. Don’t ask them how they came to learn this magic. It is as natural to them as a heartbeat is to mortals. Glamour is deception given magical form, giving them the power to confuse minds and to even fool reality itself, dependent on the skill and power of the Fey employing it.
Beginning Glamour users are able to project images and sensations into another mind. Mischievous Fey will often use this power to play pranks on mortals that are travelling alone. A common prank is to confuse the mortal’s mind with false sounds and images, making them to appear drunk as they stagger about in their attempts to find their way home. Continue reading