The World of Ley Lines


The world’s full of all sorts’a nasty freaks and monsters. The air crackles with this damn electricity that we’ve come to know as Ley and nearly everything on this world is able to absorb it and use it as a resource called Mana- but not all creatures are made with the same natural designs.

Dragons can manipulate massive amounts of Mana and wreak havoc on towns and settlements, destroying them in seconds or hours; Chimera interrupt trade-lines and logging camps; Harpies steal away books and trinkets brought to our land by foreign merchants and deny our people culture and education; and last but not least is the simple fact that curses and arcane diseases are among some of the most dangerous phenomena to occur in the natural world.

But, there’s a place where you can go to get away from the madness of it all- the neverending tide of blood and magic that the world brings to your doorstep.

Wreathed around our continent of New Roychester is an iron railway that has been driven into the cracked earth with runic stakes and hushed prayers. Hundreds of years have been invested into the laying of these ancient tracks and they are guarded ceaselessly by the Cathedral’s wards and the Church of the Spoke. Here, in New Roychester, you can cross the Ley Line and our magic iron circle will protect you from all the nasty monsters that live beyond the border. We’ve invested millions of gold into ensuring that those less magically inclined have a safe place to spend their time on this world.

And what’s the fee for this protection if you were interested?

Well, it’s free friend. You just bring yourself, your family, your stuff, and we’ll get you settled right in and find you somewhere to be bright and early. Your neighbors can’t wait to meet you.

So when you get to the Crossroads, tell em’ Leslie sent ya’ and I’ll see ya’ soon.


Glossary


New Roychester:
The continent that the Ley Line encases.

Beastfolk:
Thanks to the massive amount of Ley that has been unintentionally bottled up in the New Roychester region this area is home to more Beastfolk than almost anywhere else. They come in all shapes and sizes and have a variety of backgrounds. It is estimated there is nearly one Beastfolk to each two Humans in New Roychester.

Lunaarl:
For some reason in New Roychester there is a curse that haunts the blood and seems to attack at random. On the full moon, at any time, it is possible for a New Roychester citizen to experience a transformation of flesh and bone that will rend them into something nearly unrecognizable. The poor person will undergo a vicious, painful warping that emphasizes their visceral talents and makes them visually predatory- long limbs, hair draping down from the body, feathers occasionally… a mockery of life.

They are banished to The Outlands as they draw in the few dangers of New Roychester, leaking Mana as they do. With the exception of the Full Moon they are normal beyond their transformation and the powers it incurs- but on that Full Moon they become something entirely more dangerous.

Revenants:
A memory made manifest. The soul of a forgotten whim that has been forever locked into torment, doomed to chase its final rest. A rest that may or may not come. These unfortunates are cursed with undeath in a way that makes little sense to anyone else and seem to, much like the Lunaarl, be a product of New Roychester’s unique situation.

The Lich Barons:
By name they are:
Leslie Roychester
Garrett Liams
Alexander Dupree

These three mysterious figures appeared on New Roychester about 200 years ago and forged the Ley Lines. The last three generations that have grown up on New Roychester have lived under their protection.

The Ley Line:
A massive, continental railway that encircles most of New Roychester’s landmass. The purpose of this railway, as the people understand it, is to provide transport for the citizens, a place of worship for those of faith, protection from the plagues and horrors of The Outlands, and safe trade with the same.

The Frontier:
The colloquial term for the continent of New Roychester.

Dead Gods:
The Spoke - The God of Labor
The Furnace - The God of Heat and Production
The Engine - The God of the Ley Line and Transportation
The Slick - The God of the Oil and Fuel
The Lone Ranger - The God of those who help themselves.

The Wisps:
A faction that belongs to the Furnace, employed by one of the Lich Barons to help control the Slick when it rises to defend itself. They consider this a holy honor and take a vow of silence, condemning themselves to the Furnace for their powers. It is said that the most ancient of wisps no longer remove their garb and instead are simply ash, fueled by the heat of the Furnace.

The Slick:
Those familiar with the oil industry or Wisps would know of The Slick. Though there is little study done to explain the phenomena- when oil is drawn from the ground in New Roychester it fights back. Entities made of the fluid rise and attack nearby workers so almost all business done with oil requires a chapter of Wisps to be present.


The Cathedral:
Made from an iron that only the Lich Barons know how to construct, The Cathedral is a massive vehicle that crosses the entire Ley Line. It is a church to The Spoke and its worshippers constantly tend the railway to ensure that their barrier against the outside world is secure.

The Badlands: The center of New Roychester, the part least protected by the Lich Barons.

The Outlands: The world outside of New Roychester.

The Crossroads: The place where trade happens across the Ley Line.


History


We start with the The Five Primordial, the origin of this world's Ley. They have gone by many names, but the most recent names were given by the Valt and beyond Arcanologists, are lost to time. Instead we know them as their colloquial names:

The Spoke - The God of Labor
The Furnace - The God of Heat and Production
The Engine - The God of the Ley Line and Transportation
The Slick - The God of the Oil and Fuel
The Lone Ranger - The God of those who help themselves.

They battled on the surface of the smoldering rock that was our fledgling world and created, in their battle, the features you see on the surface today. Their bodies, spent from the eons of combat, lay down on the shaped land to be buried. Over time their power would seep into the rock, seed it, and give birth to life that would eventually become you and I.

Thousands and thousands of years go by, civilizations of varying intelligence rise and fall, but eventually the more modern societies begin to appear, but the most important and notable one is the Valt. They arrived and thrived for nearly 3,000 years in all, but their civilization largely vanished, until nearly 200 years ago.

It is recorded that the sky went dark for a year, known now as The Year of Twilight. People don't remember much from that time, records tell us that there was a cosmic event, two bodies colliding and then a flash of impossible magic that protected the planet. Storms ravaged coasts, the face of the world changed.

When it was gone, a year later, the Moon was much closer to us. Tides had changed and pushed away the sea revealing the new continent of New Roychester. Dragons had appeared, Chimera, harpies, and so much more. Monsters started attacking settlements, villages, and plagues of magic spread like wildfire through cities. People looked to the newly exposed continent and their returning sun as a sign.

It took roughly three years for the first settlers to venture out and when they returned they had stories of a land where a railway was being constructed to prevent the horrors of the magical storms. Settlements were already being built and a mass migration went underway. For a while this new land accepted everyone with open arms, but slowly, as time went on, the limits on who and what was allowed in the borders became more strict- now a slow trickle of people are allowed over the Ley Line.

They are still allowing people in, every few years they send out invitations from Leslie Roychester. Many heed the call, glad for the chance to get away from the wrath of mother nature.


Homebrew Info


We use the Fantasy Age system for Ley Lines, although we have made several alterations. Not all are listed here, but on this page you can find all the major changes we've made going in.

The following are some of the basic rules we've altered:

Major, Minor, Move: Movement has been broken away from minor actions to allow a more flexible and mobile combat experience. We also are allowing any kind of attack break up between movement if movement remains.

Stunt Pool: As recommended in the companion we’re going to use an adjusted Stunt Pool system where the total amount of possible points is 2x the amount of players (making it 10 currently). You can add points to the pool by leaving leftover points from COMBAT stunts in the pool, up to max, and can remove a max of 2 at any time (including out of combat).

Status Effects: Default Fantasy AGE really doesn’t have a robust status system, so I’ve added my own. You can read about it here if you’re that kind of nerd.

Currency: We just use gold cause managing the other shit isn’t fun.

Below, you can find more of our changes broken up into categories:

Specializations

Specialization: Lunaarl (Warrior, Mage, Rogue)
A curse that transcends time seems to plague this land and, chosen seemingly at random, it chooses those who will take on the form of a Lunaarl.

Lunaarls are hideous, monstrous looking beasts with flesh hanging by threads, long angular bodies, and vicious killing tools. Though they are mostly docile they lose their control on the full moon, thus they are ousted for the safety of others.

Lunaarls are themselves save full moons, but their new bodies come with a slough of benefits, despite their hideous form.

Novice:
(Trait) Feral Strength: Starting at the beginning of a combat encounter you gain 2 Speed (1in.) and +1 damage to attacks and spells each turn, capping at your level.

Journeyman:
(Stunt) Lunge (4sp): Move up to your speed to an enemy or ally. If you reach an enemy, you must make a melee attack. If you reach ally you grant them defense bonus equal to modifier.

Master:
(Activate) Mana Frenzy: Your Feral Strength bonus is doubled until the end of your next turn, when this effect ends restart the stacks of Feral Strength.

(Trait) Sustained Rage: Once a round, If you kill an enemy while Mana Frenzy is active, the duration increases by an additional turn.

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Specialization: Revenant (Warrior, Mage, Rogue)

A group of mutated humanoids that have adapted to consume the remaining Arcane energy that is welled within the Ley Line. They aren’t inherently dangerous, but due to their nature they are often secretive and generally worship The Lone Ranger if anything. They find purpose in bearing the will of their death- though they usually seem to aimlessly search for that goal.

Novice:
(Trait) Mana Vampire: You can no longer be healed traditionally, gaining Mana in any way heals you.

(Trait) Cursed Blood: Your spells now cost health instead of mana and increasing your Mana Pool instead increases your Max Health.

Journeyman:
(Talent) Past Lives: Become a Novice in two Arcana of your choosing.

(Trait) Ley Leech: Being damaged by spells that have the same element as trained Arcana heals you.

Master:
(Talent) Fragmented Past: Increase your rank to Journeyman in a known Arcana. If no Arcana is known, or all Arcana are Master you may instead take a new Novice Arcana.

(Activate) Infused Impact: Deal additional damage on a spell or attack by sacrificing 2 health per point up to a cap of your level.


Talents

Fanning

Novice:
(Trait) Gunslinger: When firing a single action handgun you may make Lightning Attack at 2 stunt points instead of 3.

Journeyman:
(Trait) Snapshot: Once per round you can generate stunt points with Lightning Attack.

Master:
(Trait) Quickdraw: You now only need to load your firearms when firing special rounds.


Races

The Valt
by Misandry

The Valt were both a society and a race. The resulting culture was their attempt to unify other natives in the northern reaches.

Metropolitan and sophisticated in their pursuit of natural philosophy, the Valt put an emphasis on education. Galit Arul (as it was translated “The Earthly Throne Among The Stars”) was their capital and their sole city, rested in the frozen wastes.

Over the course of 3000 years their society evolved and grew, made up of a cooperation of the various tribes that were native to the area.

Unfortunately, this great empire was crushed around 200 years ago in a gesture of trust. Outsiders looking to trade knowledge arrived, the Valt were not willing to give what they requested, so when the information the Outsiders sought was not forthcoming they slaughtered the Valt.

The city has long since become a ruin and is now given wide berth. Its location too cold for anyone to consider settling and the sacked remnants of the ancient culture of no interest to anyone other than Arcanologists and historians.

The Barons themselves have limited the ventures to the north and restricted the citizens under their protection from going there. Perhaps it is to keep them safe, perhaps it is something else.


Population:
Functionally Extinct

Avg. Height:
5’4” to 7’

Avg. Weight:
Varied

Lifespan:
Arcanologists have long speculated on the Valtians lifespan as evidence suggests they matured at around 40 human years and never died of natural causes. Some Valtian records even show thousand year old houses.

Despite their impressive lifespan the Valt were a people that reproduced slowly, only one child roughly every fifty years, keeping the population small.

What is known is that roughly every hundred years a Valtion would enter a hibernation period that could last anywhere from days to several years, though rare recordings suggest some hibernated for decades.

Appearance:
The Valtian’s skin was varied in its color though it was frequently described as “ghostly” or "undead" which is attributed to their location.

In addition, they had subtle pointed ears and sharp canine fangs which evidence suggests they used to drink the blood of the scarce local fauna. This is why they excelled in the otherwise harsh and unforgiving environment. Between harvesting blood from well protected stock or wildlife they would eat hardy and rich boreal root vegetables and herbs. Some of these ancient recipes have even made it into our traditional cooking.

Society:
The Valt were a cosmopolitan society of many sources near the end, but the initial peoples native to the land were the largest factor in the societies passions. The most important among these was their utter devotion to intellectual pursuit. Their social strata was defined by academic and intellectual achievement, usually confined to families.

Esteemed families had crests that displayed their greatest accomplishments and individuals displayed their expertise with decoration. These came in the form of extravagant metal adornments that served as both a boast and as a resume of sorts and are still, today, coveted by Arcanologists and historians.

Unfortunately, as with all great civilizations, the social strata was not uniform. There were a number of very influential families, but since the wealth was controlled by them, underclass citizens with ambition would have to serve as apprentices or shadows to more noble blood. Doing this often meant gaining access to resources and education but usually at the cost of more dangerous duties, such as body-guarding. Though not unheard of there are a few recorded cases of Valtians marrying into family lines instead of taking the traditional process.

Warfare was virtually never heard of, yet there was still a robust enthusiasm for performative combat. Honor Duels were among the Valtians favorite competitive sports and combat was even used to resolve some legal conflicts. Particularly skilled duelists would often be sought out by families for protection of their scions as the late political climate of their society grew.

It was through this love of battle that a unique fighting style of using large, heavy, and unwieldy weapons with grace and fluidity became an art form. This is still practiced by some today, but replication only goes as far as Valtian texts will allow.

(Features)
Add 1 to your Constitution
Add Ability Focus: Engineering
Speed = 10 + Dex
Can speak Valtian

Trait Table:
2: +1 Intelligence
3-4: (Focus): Intelligence
5: +1 Dexterity
6: (Focus): Fighting
9: +1 Constitution
10-11: (Focus): Communication (Investigation)
12: (Trait) Hemovore: As a minor action you can consume blood (if possible) to gain 2 Stunt Points.


Backgrounds

Duster
(Dexterity: Riding or Perception: Seeing)

A colloquial term for the couriers, explorers, thrill-seekers, treasure hunters, and mercenaries that ride out into the Outlands. They are usually hired out to deliver mail and cargo to settlements, not on the rail. They do all kinds of work though. There is no formal organization as a whole, but the companies and individuals who do this work operate under a series of unspoken rules.

1. Follow through. If you take a job, complete it. Not doing this will get you blacklisted quickly.

2. Never lose your payload. If you are delivering something, the only reason it shouldn’t arrive is that you died.

3. It doesn’t matter who delivers it. You only get paid if you deliver it yourself.

4. You do NOT interfere with a medicine delivery. Seriously just don’t do it.

Due to the unpredictable nature of magic outside of the rails, dusters need to come specially prepared. There are two things in a Duster arsenal that are indispensable. Their coats and their lasso.

Duster: The namesake of the people themselves. In order to even be given a job, you have to have a long coat (Duster) specially made from the hide of arcane beasts. You don’t get one without killing such a beast yourself. The nastier the arcane beast the more potent the duster. On top of making the dusters immune to the random magic bullshit that keeps happening out there, it also makes them functionally invisible to the bigger nasties. A duster without his coat is a dead duster.

Lasso: What looks to be a simple leather cord is made of the same arcane beast hide as the duster. When wrapped around an arcane enriched object it nullifies its effects or at least nullifies it well enough to transport. It can also be used as a simple barrier cordage for a camp. Lay it in a circle and the arcane cannot enter it.

Episode List


Episode 0:
YOUTUBE | TRANSCRIPT

Episode 1:
YOUTUBE

Episode 2:
[Coming to Youtube Soon]

Episode 3:
[Coming to Youtube Soon]

Characters

COMING SOON