Fate and the Void

One of the most pivotal and defining aspects of the Element game is the effect that both Fate and the Void can have. In many ways it is the struggle at the heart of the game, the good versus evil that makes storytelling and role – playing fun. In this section we discover how both forces are relevant to the game mechanics and the players involved.

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Fate

Fate is the power for good, the counter to the Void. It is a hard won ally, but once on your side it can be used to great effect. Characters born of the chosen races begin the game with one Fate point, a one–off way of buying a guaranteed success in an endeavour through game play.

How are they earned? Through heroic action and sacrifice, many examples of what this means can be listed, but any good referee will recognise what is good enough to qualify for selfless action or reaction in the face of adversity and evil.

Fate Points are awarded in the format of a card which can be attached to the characters wallet and may then be spent in a way chosen by that player whenever they choose to use it, spending this point requires physically tearing the card and explaining to a Referee the use of the Fate Point to accomplish a specific task. Once spent, the Fate Point is not replaced, unless through its use a player is doing something equally of worth to earn another Fate Point.

Players may have more than one Fate Point, but no more than five in total at any one time. A character that chooses to use a Void Point or succumbs to the Void loses all Fate Points immediately, further more, a Fate Point may not be used up to balance out an act that would normally earn a Void Point.

The Void

The Void, in reflection and in conflict with Fate is less capricious or so restrictive in who it chooses to bestow its influence upon. All players have within their character wallet a Void Point for the entirety of in–game time, to be used, if they so wish, to buy an automatic success – just like a Fate Point! However, to succumb to such use, even if the purpose may be noble in its immediate appraisal does little more than open the character to further influence of the Void. Making use of the Void Point earns your character a permanent Void Point that will come into effect the next time Phoebe is in the night sky and that is bad, it allows the Referee Team to manipulate your character in ways you might not wish it to be manipulated as you surrender part of the characters soul to the Void.

If you earn five Void Points, your character becomes a non–player character as they are finally consumed completely by the Void, from which only a few have managed to make their way back from. So if you have a Void Point, or more, what do you surrender? It is quite simple, if you have a Void Point, it means that at any moment during the course of an evening of an event, a referee can take you to one side and explain that the Void is extending its influence upon you and forcing you to act in a way that the Referee tells you to act for a certain period of time. An example might be to instruct you to assassinate a specific player (and therefore earn another Void Point in the process!).

Void Points are not easily lost, repentance is a hard and arduous task that also requires the expenditure of experience points to burn it away, and the simple truth is this: Do not succumb to the temptation of the Void.

Time Periods under the influence of the Void are as follows:
1 Void Point: 5 Minutes
2 Void Points: 10 Minutes
3 Void Points: 30 Minutes
4 Void Points: 1 Hour
5 Void Points: Permanent

A maximum of ten Void Points may be possessed by those under its sway (NPC's and Creature of the Void) and may be used for various additional purposes, which are listed in various sections of the rules, for example Necromental Magic.

As characters always have a Void Point available to them, it is recommended that at the end of every event, or time–out over a weekend event, they are handed back to the Referee Team, otherwise the referee team has every right to assume the card has been torn and used!

The Void wants to seduce you, it will trick you if it can; you have been warned!

Actions worthy of the Void
1. Murder – Killing in itself is not inherently evil, as it is a fact of life that animals will kill to feed and evil often has to be slain in the process of defeating it, wanton abandonment of respect for life is however the domain of the Void, as is a lust for killing.
2. Torture – Making someone else suffer pain and anguish for your pleasure is a sure fire way of giving in to the temptation of the Void. Even torturing someone as a means to gain information is considered worthy of the Void. Interrogation is fine, as is the threat of torture, actually doing it is wrong.
3. Necromental Magic – is of the Void and most uses of this type of magic grant the reward of Void Points.
4. Inaction – will always be a hard one to call and requires sensible refereeing. A character may not act in a manner worthy of immediately granting them Void Points, but should they turn their back or allow agents of the Void to infiltrate or enter places where they may advance their own goals, then the character, by aiding, even without abetting the enemy gains a Void Point. This rule is included as a proviso against rule bending.
5. Using the Void – every player has the option of burning a Void Point to achieve an automatic success during a task, to do so earns a permanent Void Point.

Ultimately, I am sure anyone reading this section of the rules can get the idea of what it is to become under the influence of the Void, this is only a short list, there are no doubt many, many other ways in which the seduction of the Void can claim a player.

Note: In all instances, the Referee Team may confer and decide if an action is deemed worthy of a Void Point.

The Difference between a Temporary Void Point and a Permanent Void Point

Temporary Void Points

Temporary Void Points are those incurred during gameplay that have not yet activated. There are some characters who have a means to cleanse Void Taint in play, and a player will have until nightfall (before the Void Point is activated) to find a way to cleanse themselves of Void Taint.

Permanent Void Points

Permanent Void Points are in play once the Void Taint within a character has been activated at night time. Void Points that have been activated may only be cleansed by being bought off using xp, and suitable repentant roleplay has taken place. If a player has chosen to 'Burn a Void Point', this is also a Permanent Void Point, and again, may only be cleansed by being bought off using xp, and suitable repentant roleplay has taken place.

A Void Point earnt at night time is automatically Permanent.

Note: If a player character should happen to hold 5 Void Points, they no longer have the option of buying them off with xp, as upon earning that 5th Void Point, they have become an NPC, and no longer under that player's control.

Cleansing Void

There are a variety of ways in which one can cleanse themselves of Void Taint. Most ways involve a skill possessed by characters. There is also the option of 'buying off' Void Taint at a rate of 10xp per Void Point. To do this, the player must have the xp to do so, and requires appropriate roleplay within a ritual circle or consecrated ground.

An Example of Repentance

The following post on our Forums was made after a party of players incurred a Void Point for inaction. The player who made the post (Jen Wright, playing Shakarri the Purple Dracosylph) had already had their Void Point activated, and as a result nearly killed one of her closest friends. Jen bought off her Void Point for 10xp, and then made her post, repenting the reasons for incurring the Void Point.

((Bold text is what Shy is saying, the italic font is a reflective thought to follow what she has just said))

The dire wolf had bitten down and torn flesh, muscle, sinew and almost bone for the final time, Yalena had successfully constricted her, Bylystyr had restrained and gagged her and at last the events of the night had claimed her weariness enough to remove conciousness and force her mind to cease from mental fight for the evening

In her restrained slumber she had been moved, well away from Artemis and the Alchemy tent, to somewhere else, somewhere under full guard, to where she couldn't harm any more of her friends and comrades, with escort of two Rangers, a Mage and a Dire wolf

As the sleepy throws of waking began to take over, memories of the previous nights events begin to play on repeat, streaming through her mind like an endless video stream, retelling every moment from standing to moving, to wrapping her unforgiving hands around Artemis neck as she sat there restrained and helpless

Shykyrry wails and cries out as the pain of the memory sets in and rips through her very being, mentally ripping her apart emotion by emotion, she had laid hands on, and throttled the conciousness out of the closest friend she had in the Elemental Union besides her brother and if it weren't for the intervention of the Dire wolf, Yalena and Bylystyr she would be dead, by her own hands

She wants to curl up and maybe find even just the slightest hint of security in herself, but the restraints stop her, and she lays exposed… lashed down like a savage animal, the savage killer she had become in the night

"Please.. Please let her be OK" she weeped, pleading with whichever being would listen to her, she had fallen, again, and the void had taken her, again, the very thought of that happening broke her, the last time she was taken by the void she had killed hundreds, thousands maybe, and the blood still stained her hands, and just like back then it had taken so little time for the life to be leaving the targets body so quickly

Her emotions betraying her strength as a Dracosylph, she was weak, so very weak right now

"Great White" her voice broken and quiet "Please hear me now" Fighting the tears and forcing them back so she could speak clearly

"You, whose voice I hear in the winds"
the Great dragons flight on the winds above Wroth Cayeno, a freedom the Gillman men would never have now
"And whose breath gives life to all the world"
A life those men and children who fought, would now never be able to lead
"Hear me, I am small and weak"
So weak that she could not stop the slaughter that played out in front of her very eyes
"I need your strength and wisdom"
to be able to stand against all those that would murder, in cold blood the life of innocents and helpless families
"Let me walk in beauty and make my eyes ever behold"

her words pausing, her train of thought breaking a little as tears shed from her eyes, streaming down the sides of her face

"the red and purple sunset"
without the stain of blood that need not be spilt
"Make my hands respect the things you have made"
so they may cherish the life I lead, and let others live
"and my ears sharp to hear your voice"
so that I may forever follow and act upon your guidance, and not stray from the righteous and good path set out before me
"Make me wise so that I may understand the things you have taught my people"
and the lessons we continue to learn in our fight against the void
"Let me learn the lessons you have hidden in every leaf and rock"
and learn from the struggles of our existence in this day to day conflict

"I seek Strength, not to be greater then my brother"
"But to fight my greatest enemy - myself"
"Make me always ready to come to you"
"With clean hands and straight eyes"
"So when life fades, as the fading sunset"
"my spirit may come to you without shame"

The screams and cries of the women and children of the Gillman colony tormented her mind once more

"Great White, please, guide me, I have strayed from the path set before me and fallen, I have put those closest to me, and those I ally with in danger, I was foolish and didn't act when I should of done and many people have lost their lives because of that"

emotions overwhelming her once more, her voice broken and silenced, her body trembling under the bonds that hold her so agressively, she lay her head back against the bed and hoped that Great White had heard her pleading words and that the taint of the void would not claim her once again in the night to come.

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