Invidia

Project: Invidia

Genre:  RPG, Interactive Fiction

Content: These are samples of the write-ups I made for an interactive fantasy game. These were meant to guide players who were new to the original lore and setting. My custom-drawn map can be found here.

Pitch: Those who don’t know history are doomed to be eaten alive by it.

Sickly children, ambitious warlords, and visionary priests all compete for a limited amount of resources in the civilized lands. There are some precious few who escape the Machiavellian designs of their lords, only to end up in the clutches of monsters who associate humans with bounty.

If the story was that simple, then the Niflheim demons wouldn’t be migrating to the other continents by the hundreds. A new epoch is coming, and it won’t be defined by the heretics who spew their filthy libel. Witches hide, faeries scheme, and the flesheaters profit from the belligerence of nations.

Few know the past or the present, but only a handful will shape the future. Will it be the lord with a vendetta? Will it be the murderous pirate? Will it be the little boy with the crippled knees?

Invidia is a fantasy feudal roleplay with a reincarnation twist. Characters are encouraged to explore, interrogate, and shape the setting as they wish through their in-character plots. Regular site events will drive the main plot, mostly through member input. Bring your friends, it’s going to be one hell of a ride.

Setting:

Verthandi is predominantly populated by humans, which means that it is also the most politically divided of all the continents. Agnenthe and the Federation of Embla enjoy the most political influence, which is constantly being challenged by the immensely wealthy merchant state of Corinth. The presence of the Church clashes with Inga’s secular traditions and threatens to tear the budding principality apart. The Kingdom of Talluk remains the only state without fiefdoms, but unity between its people is almost nonexistent.

Skuld is dominated by faeries on the forested coasts of Sylvia. The fae all but control the land and magic runs deep in the land itself. Despite the best efforts of Verthandi merchant princes, colonization has not extended past the east coast of Skuld. The faerie kingdoms heavily regulate these settlements to ensure a consistent food source. Migration is highly restricted to only the merchant classes. Most children born in Skuld would have known faeries for all their lives, an eccentricity that outsiders struggle to accept.

There are many secrets in Urd, and too many have died for the sake of unraveling them. Settlements on this continent are few and far in between, and nearly all the locals engage in subsistence farming. They don’t worry about invasion as frequently as Verthandians do – nature itself is more than capable of destroying any army that marches in.

The Crucibles are a contested territory between the nation of Agnenthe and the Federation of Embla. Niflheim is the homeland of demons. Its climate is utterly inhospitable to most living things.

Groups

Human

Physical labor is hard, and a healthy human can expect to die at the age of fifty or so. Even if a human doesn’t starve, they’re still vulnerable to just about every supernatural creature and strain of disease out there.

Most humans are subsistence farmers. If you’re not, then you probably have a rich patron or you have training in skills such as carpentry or blacksmithing. It’s more common to inherit your family’s social status than it is to strike it out on your own. Your character needs an exceptional story or an exceptional family, or they’re doomed to hard labor.

Flesheater

Nobody really knows where they originated from. That would be like asking which continent birds originated from. The flesheaters were always here for as long as humans kept written history. If anyone else knows better, then they’re just keeping mum.

Some look reptilian. Others look perfectly human. Any monster who consumes human flesh would go under this category.

While they are capable of eating animals, such a lifestyle is impractical for most flesheaters. They must consume a ratio of 10 animal to 1 human flesh. Verthandi’s practices of enclosure have driven the majority of flesheaters on that continent to consume human meat, which is a more efficient lifestyle. The flesheaters of other continents live on animal prey, mostly because humans are more sparsely populated elsewhere.

The only other commonality is that they are the perfect hunters. Night vision, echolocation, and teeth that shred muscles like butter are all common among this race. Their physical abilities reflect their ability to pursue the second greatest predator on earth – man. It usually takes two or three humans to physically subdue even the weakest flesheaters.

Most flesheaters are independent hunters. However, there are a few of the more human-looking ones that are employed by shady contractors as mercenaries and assassins. They perform especially well in those fields, and it’s said that a ten man band of flesheater mercenaries is able to replace a small army.

Faerie

The faeries have extremely diverse politics on whether humanity is friend or foe, but all of them have one thing in common: their need to feed on human dreams. Thus they favor the elite who have learned to rest on their laurels and complacent laborers who have given up on improvement in life. This comes at a heavy cost to their victims. Their prey will be plagued with anxiety, paranoia, and incessant hallucinations for as long as faeries take advantage of them. The fae find the visionaries to be an inconvenience – they burn out far too quickly to make for a decent meal.

A fairy usually lives for decades or thousands of years. Their fertility rates are extremely low. There is no higher crime than killing a faerie in their own lands.

The more humanoid fae are often mistaken for witches because of their magical powers. In addition to their core element, every faerie also can access mind-altering powers without destabilizing themselves with dark magic. This is thought of as their celestial blessing. It is rumored that faeries can transform, but they are always optical illusions. There are human cults that worship some fae as living gods. The Verdanthi church considers them an offense to their god.

While these monsters do not have great influence in the human realm independently, there have been historical instances of faerie orders causing the death of minor kingdoms that offend them. This is not a frequent occurrence since faeries are a diverse bunch who seldom agree on anything, except by means of political goals and blood ties.

Setting 

This is a large amount of writing, so I’m attaching it as a MS Word file.

Location Descriptions.

Image is hand-drawn by me.