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 [Guide] The Elements, part combat system, part zodiac
Esjitu
 Posted: Nov 27 2015, 09:37 PM
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[This is a GUIDE THREAD. For discussion of the ideas expressed in this thread, please go here. Note that some content of the discussion thread may have since been changed and made irrelevant, and when in doubt, the content of this thread should always take precedence]

As you no doubt noticed, you were asked to choose from one of nine elements upon registration. These 9 elements comprise the IGNOLand Elemental System.

The Basics

Everyone in the world is born with a natural element. Worshipers of IGNOLand's patron divine entity, The RAINBOW, see this as a divine gift that blesses new life as it enters into the world. The more secular explanation is simply that natural forces influence one to be born under a particular element, much like the real-world constellations of the Zodiac. Regardless of your beliefs, the fact that everyone is born tied to a particular element is set in stone - there is no such thing as someone with 'no element' in this world.

From an in-universe perspective, this element is static and cannot be changed. With the exception of becoming light or shadow (see their respective entries), the element you're born with is the element you're stuck with for life. From an OOC perspective, I will allow members to change their element of choice if they find themselves particularly unsatisfied, so long as they have not engaged in any plots where their old element played a substantial role. If it's something no one is likely to notice being changed, I have no problems with it. However, you are required to consult with me if you wish to change it!!

Like any good elemental system, all the elements have fundamental strengths and weaknesses to the other elements. If you've ever played a Pokemon game in your life, you probably have an idea of how this works already, but let's break it down:

(IMG:http://i.imgur.com/YoOe0db.png)

chart graphic courtesy of Karma

This is the element chart. The flow of the arrows indicates what elements are strong and weak against the others - for instance, fire has an arrow going towards ice, meaning fire is strong against ice. However, the arrow behind it, coming from water, means fire is weak against water. Understand? However, Shadow and Light both exist separately from the other 7 elements, lying outside of their flow. This means they only affect each other - Shadow is simultaneously weak and strong against Light, and vice-versa. For example, if you were a Shadow user facing someone of the Light element, you would be able to deal significant damage to them with your Shadow attacks - however, defend well, for their Light attacks are just as devastating to you.

In addition to the standard strength/weakness chart, the element system functions along the lines of the Zodiac, providing a sort of basic 'template' for different personality types as well as their social compatibility with members of other elemental signs. This is the primary means of fortune telling and horoscopes given in IGNOLand, and even people who live ordinary lives and rarely have to consider the combat aspects of their elemental affinity often look to their sign for guidance.

Finally, each element has a natural talent associated with it, as well as both a strong and weak attribute. These talents and attributes are useful to keep in mind, particularly in combat situations.

On Secondary Elements

Occasionally, there will be people who are born on a borderline, falling between two elements. These people always have one element that is considered their 'primary' element - the one that represents them more closely, and provides their main elemental strengths and weaknesses - and one 'secondary' element. These secondary elements may contribute some additional skills to their repertoire, or provide access to a second talent, and [not sure yet - would a dual-type get new weaknesses/resistances, like a Pokemon? Or would that remain dictated only by the primary element, to keep things simple? Is it too overpowered if the secondary element provides new skills without also providing new weaknesses? Is it too complicated to have to remember multiple weaknesses/resistances for certain members? Let me know, folks]. It is, however, impossible to have two contradictory elements - one cannot be both fire and water, or both light and shadow, or any other combination of an element and the element it's weak/strong against.

Understand that secondary elements are supposed to be RARE - not so rare that there are only 1-2 special snowflakes who can have them, but also not so common that just everyone gets to choose a secondary element. These will be considered on a case-to-case basis, so consult me first. Note that shadow/light users who CHOSE (or were chosen by) that path get a sort of 'free pass' at a secondary element, which would be the actual element they were born with.

Without further ado, here's the basic information about each element, to help you choose what you feel is right for your character. More detailed astrological information for each element is currently in the works and will be found on IGNOpedia when complete - at the time of this writing, only the Fire entry is complete (well, I may still add to it, but at the time of its writing I had treated it as complete). Please look to it as an example of what's to come for the remaining 8.






Lightning (Show/Hide)


Shadow (Show/Hide)


Relationship with The RAINBOW

The RAINBOW is the most widespread religion in IGNOLand, and it is believed that all 7 original elements (Ice and Metal once believed to be aspects of Water and Earth , respectively) are symbolic of the world around us, and should be revered as sacred. When talking about the elements in relation to The RAINBOW, proper capitalization is expected - Fire, instead of fire. In colloquial discussion of the elements themselves, this is unnecessary. Each element is strongly tied to its respective color and aspects in nature. Some particularly old-fashioned believers even continue to represent Ice and Metal by their original colors, though this practice is gradually fading with time.

As mentioned briefly in each element's spoiler, ancient legends hold that each element once had a temple built in its honor, located in the place in IGNOLand with the strongest connection to that element. These "temples" purportedly also served other purposes beyond simple worship, which varied from temple to temple - for instance, the fire temple was supposedly once a place to train in the martial arts and hone physical strength, the attribute most connected with that element. However, very little information about these temples has survived, with minor mentions in recovered religious texts and stories passed by oral tradition. No efforts to uncover the locations of these temples has been successful, and there are doubts as to whether they have even survived the passage of time - supposing they ever truly existed in the first place. Popular culture holds that there were nine temples - one for each modernly-accepted element - but religious scholars argue with this notion as Ice and Metal would not have been recognized as individual elements at the time these temples were most likely built. Others argue that there is evidence that these two were in fact recognized as separate elements far earlier than commonly believed.

In general, there is a lot of controversy and misinformation surrounding the temples (as is common when studying the ancient world, particularly when religion is involved), making them prime subjects in fiction and internet conspiracy theories.
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