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The Factions of the Gloaming


Factions are groups of Awakened that share a common philosophy and belief in how the war between the Sun and the Moon should be conducted, or even if it should happen at all. Guilds are "chapters" in this game, and each faction may have multiple chapters.

In the normal course of things, someone who is newly Awakened will be sought out by nearby factions who will offer him or her protection and training. Usually they will be of Sun and Moon. Directly attacking each other or the newly Awakened at an introduction is forbidden by treaties, though they can make life difficult for the other side. ("Go easy on the new guy.")

Someone who's new to the game is safe from 'PVP' until they have been initiated, which is not allowed until the VR character has reached 'Seasoned'. The process of initiation creates a mystical tattoo on their body.

Occasionally someone may choose to renounce their faction. In doing so, rather than losing their tattoo, it becomes crossed out, and they may be attacked by their former faction associates, who will attempt to drag the renounced to one of their places of power and perform a magical ritual to strip the tattoo from their body entirely. As long as they have the tattoo, they can still enter safehouses owned by that faction without being invited and thus, without guest restrictions.

Other factions are allowed to attack the renounced, but they will usually be interested in saving the renounced for themselves, since this will give them an opportunity to prise into the renounced's former faction's safehouses.

Safehouses


All factions have safehouses - though these may range in size from a simple home or apartment with a cache of weapons, ammunition, and supplies, to vast underground bases. Access to a safehouse is restricted to those who have been accepted into the faction, and those who bear the faction's tattoo, whether a current member or renounced.

Anyone who's an Initiated member of a faction can invite others in but those invited in must accept guest restrictions, which prevent them from attacking anyone inside the safehouse.

A renounced, however, can freely invite others in and they will not need to accept guest restrictions. Thus a renounced becomes a serious security hole for their former faction. As a result you'll see guards just inside most large safehouses, making sure that renounced can't slip in and admit a force large enough to overwhelm the faction members inside.

Faction Benefits


Being a member of any given faction will allow you to resupply and heal yourself at any of their safehouses. In addition, they have contacts throughout dimensions that can give you information on what's been going on recently, and what moves the other factions may be planning.

At higher levels of membership, players can purchase magical items and artifacts from their faction. They also receive training for increased powers and more complex magical spells this way; someone who doesn't belong to a faction can't advance his or her VR character.

The Sun, the Moon, and the Stars


Factions will be aligned with either the Sun, the Moon, or neither.

Dimensions will have many Places of Power. Each Place of Power will be controlled by either the Sun or the Moon. Near such a place of power - within a mile - those who are of the same alignment will receive +1 to damage, and those who are opposed will receive -1. Neutral-aligned factions have no penalty or benefit.

In order to take over a Place of Power, a faction member must be inside it and conducting a ritual, uninterrupted, for a full minute (10 rounds). This requires their full attention and is normally performed by a NPC, while the PCs protect the ritual and keep away rival faction members. If the person performing the ritual is attacked, they must make a Spirit check to avoid being interrupted. Wound penalties apply, including those wounds just caused by the attack.

When a Place of Power has been taken over, it emits a shockwave that temporarily banishes all those of opposing alignment from the area. This prevents the Place of Power from being attacked again "too soon" - usually at least a day.

Neutral-aligned factions can perform the ritual as well, if they feel that the Sun or the Moon is too strong in a dimension.

Places of Power are not permanent! They will form in a dimension, usually at a landmark location. At some point later, they will fade away, though whomever controls a Place of Power last before it fades will keep that much control over the dimension. This prevents overly repetitious battles for the same location; instead, it becomes a game of finding Places of Power before the other factions do, planning your defense, then taking it and holding it for as long as you can, or taking it back if you have to.

Specific Factions


All factions are open to all types of players, with some exceptions - Angels are prohibited from joining Moon-aligned factions, and Demons are prohibited from joining Sun-aligned factions.

Sun-Aligned Factions


The Fiery Sword - hardliners who want to claim all the dimensions for the Sun. Neutral factions are just fooling themselves - at some point they'll have to choose sides, and while being nice may win some over, sometimes you have to show them the war is real.

Blessed Light - compassionate souls who believe that as the Moon's strength gains, so does the suffering in dimensions under its power. Rather than pushing forward one dimension at a time, they venture into dark dimensions to try to light a Place of Power and give hope to the downtrodden, a place where heroes can rally.

Neutral Factions


The Wild Hunt - thrill-seekers who live for the challenge of hunting the great game of all - the other Awakened. The battle is unimportant except that assaulting a Place of Power lets them lure out Awakened that they can then challenge - if the prey can elude them then they will receive a boon, otherwise they will claim a prize or the temporary service of their target.

The League of Extraordinary Persons - they believe that the Sun and Moon must live in balance, and work in many places to ensure this happens, whether by toppling Places of Power in dimensions that are in danger of falling entirely to one side, or by adding their forces to a battle to tip the balance.

The Shadows - mercenaries for hire, they'll take any work that pays well, but they aren't entirely trustworthy - after all, if one side wins, they're going to be out of a job. Assassins, thieves, thugs and bullies, they can provide them all.

Moon-Aligned Factions


Hellfire Club - a gathering of decadent aristocrats, they enjoy their privileges as lords of the night and guard their territories jealously, but do not actively push for more, except as a means for new admissions to prove themselves or for old lords to gain more territory and status. They tend to a sense of honor and macabre humor and are much more tolerant of neutral factions, and even the occasional Sun-touched fool who insists on going where he's not wanted.

Army of Darkness - much more military than the Hellfire Club. On a one-to-one basis, Army minions are weaker than other factions, but players can rise fast and gain command of soldier Extras. They view neutral factions as unwanted random factors - you're either with them or against them, and if your faction betrays them, they'll be sure to hit you back later.
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