Old August 25, 2009, 01:15 AM   #1 (permalink)
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[Rough Draft] The Pentarma Alucinorae - Tools of Dreamweaving

With appropriate attention paid to the Dream Walking Discussion. All followers of Kaimelea and other interested parties please feel free to share your opinions/decimate this draft as you see fit.

The Pentarma Alucinorae

The Forgotten Tools of Kaimelea & Risthals Followers

Introduction:
"Unlike various other Planes that connect to our Material, the Dream Plane is open to all and is often visited by millions of people a darkening. When someone dreams or has a nightmare, they are unknowingly traversing the realms of Kaimelea and Risthal. These sister Planetars battle with each other for supremacy of these dreamers, as the more that visit their realm, the stronger they become.
To fight this never-ending battle of supremacy for the Dream Plane, the Planetars send their followers to guide Aelyrians into their realms. These are Kaimelea's Reveries and Risthal's Twisted, and what separates them from the dreamers around them is their ability to Dreamweave.
Dreamweaving, as many Reveries will tell you, involves moving lucidly through the Dream Plane, sheltering dreamers from the enticements of Risthal and her Twisted. Today, a Reverie needs nothing more than each other to operate, but in ancient times, Dreamweavers would craft elaborate tools to follow them into their Dreams, learning and mastering the intricacies of their craft in such a way that shadows current efforts. All but lost, the information about the tools of a Dreamweaver - then referred to as the 'Pentarma Alucinorae', or the 'Five Tools of Dreams' are hidden in dusty scrolls, hidden from most by jealous priests and priestesses of Aelyria's Deities, hoping the Planetars will fall by the wayside. What I write of now is a culmination of decades of research, interviews with high-ranking Kaimelean followers and even furtive conversations with 'renounced' Twisted folk. These are the skills of Dreamweaving"
- Aurenthas Ninal'fan, Scholar

The Tools - An Overiew
While there are many different interpretations of the Tools, each depending significantly upon the users culture and time, there are many facts that do not seem to vary.
The Tools are essentially objects blessed by one of the Dream Planetars to allow their wielder to manipulate the Dream Plane. Some cultures do not make use of the complete five, but there is no recordings anywhere of a number beyond that. I have translated ther various names into Common, but they are all described by different names in different tongues.
It is worth noting that these Tools were used by both Reverie and Twisted alike.
Dormus - The Sleeper - The most common of the Tools wielded in the Material Plane. Dormus moves the user and target/s between the Dream Plane and the Material. Once within a dream or nightmare, Dormus can send people deeper into a dream or further out. This is useful for if the target is trying to wake up and you wish to hold them within the dreamscape, or if you want to draw them out of a coma and awaken naturally. Awakening someone with Dormus commonly causes disorientation and lethargy, so users are recommended to move the target into the lightest of sleeps and allow them to awaken themselves to avoid side-effects
Catchphrase "Move"
Creos - The Crafter - The most useful of the Tools within a Dream or Nightmare. Put simply, Creos moulds the world around the wielder to their liking, based upon visualisations in their head. Those unaccustomed to Creos can allow their concentration to slip, which can result in deformities and weak-spots for those of the opposing Deity's followers to break through.
Catchphrase "Make"
Flux - The Shifter - The primary 'weapon' of a Dreamweaver. Flux is used to 'invert' the wielder and targets locations, sending Dreamers into Risthal's Nightmare Plane and moving the Twisted into Kaimelea's dreams. Commonly used when either a Twisted or Reverie meets their opposite number in their own plane and wishes to move the battle into the opponent's realm.
Catchphrase "Cross"
Adnexus - The Binder - A must in any battle of the Dream Planes, Adnexus temporarily links the target's Dream Form with their Material Form. In this way, harm done to someone in a dream will manifest itself upon their sleeping body. Conversly, Kaimelean healers can Bind their patients so that a healing done in the Dream Plane will cure their corporeal bodies. This is especially useful when the patient is unconscious or needs to be to begin treatment.
Catchphrase: "Link"
Exsulis - The Banished - Easily the most dangerous of the Tools, Exsulis temporarily 'locks' the target inside or out of the Dream Plane. Duration may vary from a Darkening (Apprentice level) all the way through to a season for a Grandmaster.
Catchphrase "Lock"

The Tools - A Description
As previously outlined, the exact nature of the Tools can depend a lot upon the individual. In my research, I have come across five bells, enchanted to only be heard within the Dream Plane, ringing silently in our own. I have found various flutes and pipes, with each snatch of music 'attuned' to a different Tool. I've found paintbrushes, wands, knives, it seems that the only restriction is the wielder's imagination. The nature of the Blessing placed upon the tools allows them to follow the Dreamweaver through their dreams, and requires conscious effort to be put down or taken away. The tools are also attuned to the wielder, consistantly backfiring upon anyone else who attempts to wield them.

As far as wielding is concerned, it too depends upon the nature of the Tools. Bells are swung in certain patterns, pipes are played at certain speeds in certain orders. What is agreed upon is that incorrect wielding can and often does backfire upon the user. Dormus has been known to send Dreamweavers into comas, Creos morphing a dream into a nightmare in an instant. Flux has brought enemies from an opposing plane instead of moving the user's allies. Adnexus warps the boundaries between a users Dream Form and material, bestowing body parts of a Dream Form onto the Dreamweavers Material. And as for Exsulis, there are many a lost soul within the Plane of Dreams and Nightmares that feast upon unwary Dreamers, hungrily devouring their memories of the Material World that was forbidden to them by the Banished long ago.

Novices of Dreamweaving are taught how to craft, wield and maintain their Tools. Once an Apprentice has successfully created and wielded each of the five tools, they become an Apprentice.

The Tools - Special Effects
While employing the tools singularly is the safest and most reliable method of usage, more adept Dreamweavers can combine the effects of two or more Tools.

Journeyman Level Effects
Dormus & Creos - Can bring objects from the Material Plane into a dream, also able to draw a Crafted object from a dream to life. Although without the 'locking' effects of Exsulis, this object will retain its solidity for only a moment or two before becoming incorporeal and deteriorating rapidly as it slips back into it's natural dimension. Useful for illusions, one-use items such as arrows or lockpicks and false gold.
Dormus & Flux -The Disruptor combination. While Dormus tries to pull a Dreamwalker out of the Dream Plane, Flux tries to move them between the Plane of Dreams and Nightmares. The resulting effect scatters the targets mind across the Material, Dream and Nightmare Plane. While the mind is coherent enough to naturally 'morph' back into one, it definitely distracts and incapacitates them until they pull themselves together. Duration depends upon the targets Dreamwalking ability, but does not normally last beyond a candlemark.
Dormus & Adnexus - Draws the Dreamweaver's material body fully into the Dream plane. While this renders the Dreamwalker invulnerable from anything in the Material Plane, a Dream Death becomes fatal as there is no anchor for the soul to return to. When used in reverse, the Dreamweaver is returned to the Material Plane. If an advanced Dreamweaver entered the Dream Plane in this way, found a Dreamer that might be many hundreds of miles away and return to the Material Plane through that Dreamer's dream, they would find themselves transported to the Dreamers location. In this way, a well-practiced Dreamweaver may traverse the continent, riding on the backs of dreams. This cannot be used on non-Dreamwalkers as a Dream Form is required.
Dormus & Exsulis - An improved version of Exsulis' power, this will lock your opponent in the Material if you are in the Dream Plane and vice versa. This saves a Dreamwalker having to lure their opponent into the Material Plane before locking him or her out. This cannot be used on non-Dreamwalkers as a Dream Form is required.
Creos & Flux - Moves things other than the user between the two Dream Planes. In comparison, Flux on its own can only transport a Dream Form between the two Planes, leaving anything made in their original plane behind. In this way, for example, a Dreamwalker knight does not need to recraft armour, swords and shields before being battle-ready.
Creos & Adnexus - The borders between your Mortal and your Dream Form become blurred. Aspects of one form can manifest upon the other temporarily. For example, a Dreamweaver in the Material Realm can 'morph' into their Dream Form for a short period of time. Similarly, a Dreamweaver can leech energy from their Material Body if they are battle-weary within the Dream Plane. This is a purely self-targetting effect.
Creos & Exsulis - A form of enchantment. This is often used for embuing your Creos-crafted weapons with Exsulis' locking abilities. While not as potent as Exsulis' power on it's own, the weapon has an instantaneous effect and cannot backfire. This does not affect non-Dreamwalkers as a Dream Form is required.
Flux & Exsulis - Whereas those under the effects of only Exsulis can still move between the Nightmare and the Dream Plane, those that are affected by both Exsulis and Flux are locked within either the Dream or the Nightmare Plane. Useful for preventing your opponent tampering with a Dream or Nightmare. This does not affect non-Dreamwalkers as a Dream Form is required.
Adnexus & Exsulis - The anti-Dreamwalker combination. Not only is the target banished from the Dream Plane, but the temporary separation of their body from their mind leaves them temporarily paralyzed.

Master Level Effects
Dormus, Creos & Adnexus - Creates a 'Dream Portal' within a non-Dreamwalker's dream, allowing them to follow the Dreamwalker out of their personal Dream or Nightmare and into the Dream or Nightmare Plane respectively*. This can allow them to also 'travel' between Material locations, but will similarly render them vulnerable to death in the Dream Plane. Note: non-dreamers cannot be forced through the portal.
Dormus, Creos & Adnexus CONTINUED
Users must be especially wary that the Portal is not one-way, and that Denizens of the Nightmare and Dream Planes can manifest themselves in the Material Plane through the Portal. If left to their own devices, the Denizen will disintegrate like the Dormus/Creos objects. If a Grandmaster, or a third-party then uses Exsulis to lock the Denizen in the Material Plane, the Denizen can survive so long as they are periodically re-locked by Exsulis. The duration between re-lockings is inversly proportional to the strength of the Denizen. It is worth noting that the Denizen - unless created previously by Creos - cannot be controlled, only threatened with banishment to the Dream or Nightmare Plane.
Dormus, Creos & Exsulis - The Master Dreamwalker can now create instant-effect non-backfiring weapons with the Dormus/Exsulis effect.
Dormus, Flux & Exsulis - Combines the Disruptor effect with Exsulis' locking power, drastically lengthening the time of incapacitation as the targets mind is scattered and held within the Dream, Nightmare and Material Planes. Duration can last for a Darkening (Master) or three (Grandmaster)
Dormus, Adnexus & Exsulis - The Insomnia power. When cast upon anyone, Dreamwalker or no, the target is nto only unable to Dream or Nightmare, but is unable to sleep entirely. The target will still feel tired, but be unable to rest. Duration either 3 darkenings (Master) or a cycle (Grandmaster)
Creos, Flux & Exsulis - The Master Dreamwalker can now create instant-effect non-backfiring weapons with the Flux/Exsulis effect
Creos, Adnexus & Exsulis - The Master Dreamwalker can now create instant-effect non-backfiring weapons with the Adnexus/Exsulis effect

Grandmaster Level Effects
Dormus, Creos, Flux, Adnexus & Exsulis - The Grandmaster now knows each Tool intimately, and can use them in ways unheard of. The Tools have now evolved from following set rules to becoming suggestions of possibilities. A Grandmaster can now use any combination of Tools for what they require, so long as they can trace the effect back to the basic rules of the Tools employed. This does not mean that the Grandmaster is omnipotent. The underlying rules of Dreamweaving are:
- You cannot directly affect any denizen of the Dream or Nightmare Plane that does not have a Dream Form.
- You cannot create sentience. Any 'life' created in the Dream or Nightmare Plane is merely a puppet of your will and will never display Free Will or Independance. Sentience is the tool of Kaimelea and Risthal only.
- No Twisted or denizen of the Nightmare Plane can enter the City of Reverie. Similarly, Kaimelea is the only Dream-affiliated entity that can enter [_Risthal's City_]

*Dream and Nightmare Planes:
I visualise the Dream Plane as a massive white infinite space. When someone enters a dream, the dream moulds itself around them, making floating 'islands' of dreams with white space between. The Nightmare Plane would be similar but in black. As the City of Reverie is in a dream of it's own, regular dreamers cannot reach it independantly, as two dreams cannot overlap. Therefore, travelling in the way the Dormus/Adnexus power alludes to would involve a Dreamwalker entering the Dream Plane, stepping out of their own dream, walking/floating/swimming/flying across the intervening White Space of the Dream Plane, invading someone elses Dream and then re-using the Dormus/Adnexus power to 'drop out' of the dream and into the immediate vicinity of the resident Dreamer.
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The weary feel my blessing and the Dark shall fear my might
For in a world of shadows,
I am theChild of Light.

"...You Rank, Gray-Skinned Codpiece! You sniveling, tear-streaked, coattail-grasping, orc-face!
You lumpish, cabbit-brained, daydream bully! You straw-limbed, gutless, sparkle-finger-wavin' Straylor!
-igrainne
(Silly girl, she's just jealous that he's getting more action than her)

Last edited by Quilantes Zil'aven; August 25, 2009 at 11:58 PM.
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Old August 25, 2009, 10:22 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Hi there!
Firstly, thanks for asking for my opinion, I'm flattered to think that anyone thinks that I know anything about anything.

So - comments - and please feel free to ignore them completely, I won't be offended.

Dreamweaving? Hmm.m.. I've always called it Dreamwalking ~ are you talking about the same thing, or do Dreamwalkers Dreamweave?

I love the idea of the five tools (links in well with the Air'riela, too!)

Well, now then, I'm not sure about what the tools are - I'd like to see a little more clarity on that - are they tools that are made by each Reverie / Twisted or are they tools made by each individual Dream Walker? Or are these tools that are actual relics kinda thing? That would be my first question.

And since there are five tools, would it make sense to link them to the levels of the skill? So, at Level 1 a Dream Walker can use Tool A, at Level 2, Tool A and Tool B.

Whatcha think?

I really like this, but rather than being a treatise on Dreamweaving, it's a treatise on the Dream Walker Tools. Or Tools of the Dreaming.

Does that make sense?
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Old August 25, 2009, 11:03 AM   #3 (permalink)
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I anticipated your last point before you posted and the title has been changed appropriately.

(damn, I've rewritten this paragraph three times now :P) If Dreamwalking is the official term, I'll edit it. I heard something about it being a well-known trope from some fantasy series though, so was unsure.

I totally agree with the levels being linked to Dreamwalking. Although I think that the novice would still have access to all five tools, but they only know/can successfully employ certain effects without a risk of backfire.
Eg, an Apprentice Twisted tries to summon a Nightmare denizen into the Material Plane. They need to use Creos to make it a corporeal body, Adnexus to bind the corporeal and the Nightmare bodies together, Dormus to 'pull' it out of the dream and Exsulis to lock the 'soul' of the Nightmare in place to prevent it slipping back again. If a novice succeeds in creating all five tools, he's promoted to Apprentice. But he is only taught how to wield them individually. Dual-wielding the Tools only comes to a Journeyman and Multi-wielding is Master-class work. So the Apprentice will fail and the Tools will backfire. This could mean
- The nightmare not leaving the Nightmare Plane (Dormus fails)
- The body isn't created properly and withers in the Material Plane (Creos fails)
- Only the corporeal body/nightmare soul is summoned, either will wither and fade (Adnexus fails)
- The nightmare makes it out into the Material Plane, only to slip back into the Dream (Exsulis fails)

Then you've also got fun little effects if more than one fail, use your imagination you not following your creation out of the Dream plane and being locked in by Exsulis (Dormus and Exsulis fail together), the nightmare doing a body swap with your own (Adnexus and Dormus fail) etc.

Essentially, the incentive NOT to try anything out of your league is there. You've got full power from the very beginning, but levelling up gives you the knowedge/practice to successfully pull off higher ranking effects.

I still need to finish the rest of it (burnt out today, fix it tomorrow :P) but the idea is that no one 'needs' the tools, as the existing Reveries and Twisted are clearly functioning without them. A freelance Dreamwalker would be wise to craft all five (yes I intend it to be a very personal process, maybe your time as a Novice Dreamweaver involves crafting your tools, garnering a promotion to Apprentice when they're all made and ready to go?

Finally, I understand that your Reverie has certain specific jobs. Yourself as a seer would use Dormus to move easily into the Dreamworld, but would not need Creos, as you want your premonitive dreams to manifest on their own instead of having you meddling with them. The Zealot, however, would make use of the offensive natures of Flux, Adnexus and Exsulis to battle the Twisted. Because you work as a team, you wouldn't all need the same tools, and can rely on one or two of the Reverie to use it for you.
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The weary feel my blessing and the Dark shall fear my might
For in a world of shadows,
I am theChild of Light.

"...You Rank, Gray-Skinned Codpiece! You sniveling, tear-streaked, coattail-grasping, orc-face!
You lumpish, cabbit-brained, daydream bully! You straw-limbed, gutless, sparkle-finger-wavin' Straylor!
-igrainne
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Old August 25, 2009, 11:32 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Heya! Just a few comments so far (in case you aren't aware, I am also Tiarela Iceglitter, so comments from her and from me = same person!)

On Dreamweaving Dreamwalking, Goss had informed me awhile back that it is a spin on another ... thing, not sure what though. Perhaps Dreamweavers Dreamwalk? I think in the writeup, she called Kaimelea's priests Dreamweavers. However, in my Risthal writeup... I called it Dream Possession (for obvious implications, no one wants Nightmares so its not exactly walking as it is offensive in nature)

Also, I think we need to be very careful about how much tie we give to the corporeal standpoint of things, because that makes it too powerful if we can harm folks and they cant do anything about it because they are asleep. I would limit such harmful effects to natural occurances of pleasant dreams and nightmares, such as...

Twisted can inflict harm in terms of "cold sweats, rapid heart rates, feeling of falling upon waking up" basically anything that would detract from a restful night's sleep.

Dreamweavers/Kaimelea Priests can heal in terms of "deep restful sleeps" and those sorts of things. Happy dreams make you wake up feeling deeply refreshed. That should be their main influence on the corporeal forms.

The only exception to this is that high level ones (say, "L5" so to speak) should be able to do more dastardly things, like the Consumation ritual for Risthal, or perhaps the re-binding of an Azaru for the Kaimelean Priests. Or perhaps Kaimelean Priests can do things like work at night to bring a material world person out of acoma. After all, to me, most acomas could be viewed as the start of the loss of the soul.

Another item that should be added to "tools of the trade" should be a dreamcatcher. Kaimelean priests believe this protects a bit against the Twisted, and the Twisted use it as a sort of "road map" for themselves, if it is at their bedside, so that they are not lost within the nightmare realm and doomed to become the Azaru forever... or until they find their bodies again.

Also, it is important to note that Reveries operate in groups but the Twisted only do that occasionally - most of them are isolationist unless they are brought together in a sense for a common goal. Since none of the dream realm folks know their true names, this is actually kind of hard to achieve in the material realm.

I like where you are going with this though. You are very creative Quil. Not what I had in mind whenever I tried to start this writeup 200000 times in the least.
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Old August 25, 2009, 12:17 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Thanks Trin I've been inspired by the Old Kingdom series by Garth Nix (Seven Bells of the Abhorsen, a kind of anti-Necromancer that banishes undead souls and moves through the Planes of Death with bells like Ranna the Sleeper, Kilbeth the Walker and Astarael the Sorrowful) and the Guardians of Time (Paladins of Time that battle the forces of Chaos, meeting in a dream-like world that they get to through their sleep).

Anyway, back to the suggestions.
I don't intend for either side to be able to affect anothers corporeal form easily. With a dismemberment for example, perhaps an apprentice would leave a faint welt that clears within a few hours (useful for identifying an opponent in the Material Plane but thats about it). A journeyman would leave a shallow cut and a scar that perhaps lasts a month. Masters would cause painful flesh wounds and the chance of permanent scarring and a Grandmaster would essentially be doing the real thing.

If not, then what about more of a 'spirit link' kind of thing. If you're killed in a dream you don't just wake up, you die. But then how can we 'level' it to make it hard for apprentices? Or do we assume that if an apprentice can kill someone then they deserve to die?

As far as non-dreamwalkers defences, I think that unless they are trapped in their dream by Exsulis (I intend for that tool to be very difficult to use reliably, more of a risky high-risk high-return kind of thing) a dreamer can simply wake up. Although that assumes they are lucid dreamers...

Anyone got any ideas of how it could be balanced to give your basic dreamer a chance?
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For in a world of shadows,
I am theChild of Light.

"...You Rank, Gray-Skinned Codpiece! You sniveling, tear-streaked, coattail-grasping, orc-face!
You lumpish, cabbit-brained, daydream bully! You straw-limbed, gutless, sparkle-finger-wavin' Straylor!
-igrainne
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Old August 25, 2009, 01:24 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I think that the question f what to do to give the basic dreamers a chance is a very significant and important question.

I think that the thing with a Dreamwalker entering the dreams of another is that they do so as themselves, intact with all their skills and abilities. If they are going to enter the dreams of others, then we need to look at different scenarios

1. Just entering a dream - walking alongside.
I figure this should be something that people might have some natural "resistance" to, but not immunity. So some people might be more difficult to enter the dreams of than others, but it can be done.

2. Interacting in another's dream
Well, I guess that's the same. Once you're in, you're in, really. I suppose.

3. Attacking someone in their dreams / causing effects / causing harm.
That's where it's got to be moderated, I rather think. I think that maybe the thing to do is to have the Dream Walker always be themselves, with their skills and abilities, and the dreamer be a shifting reality, one minute one dream, the next another. Which the GM decides. So, as a DW'er you might be facing a dragon one minute and a flea the next.

Whatcha think?
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Old August 25, 2009, 07:27 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Sounds good Hay, makes sense that some people are harder to affect than others. Like, if someone is in a nightmare and truly believes that it's real, a Reverie will have great difficulty trying to change it with Creos, or use Flux to move them into Kaimelea's Realm.

I think as far as assault goes, if we link the Tools' power to Dream Forms we might make it a bit more balanced. Because only Reveries and Twisted have Dream Forms/Guises, maybe your average Dreamer's lack of 'spirit' in the Dream Plane prevents/makes it very difficult for Dreamwalkers to harm them.
Dormus and Flux will still work on them, as that could be seen as moving the Dream Plane around them and not the Dreamer. Creos similarly is not affecting the Dreamer, just their dream. And since the Dreamer has no real 'presence' in the Dream Plane, no anchor like a Reverie/Twisted Dream Guise, the effects of Adnexus and Exsulis are nullified. Essentially, trying to assault a Dreamer in the Dream Plane is like trying to assault a ghost in the Material Plane. You can move and change the scenery around them, moving them from place to place, but not able to affect them directly.

So, what does this mean for using Dreamwalking as an offensive tool? Against non-dreamers, it's naturally rather difficult. You can use Dormus to send a group of enemies into the Dream Plane, although unless you keep using it they can easily wake up again, as you can't lock them in place with Exsulis like what you could do with another Dreamwalker. Ambush is most likely the best way to kill. If someones already asleep, you can invade their dreams, make them think that they wake up and then attack them in their dream. If they're killed in a dream (hard, how many times have you awoken just before the train hit you?) then they will die in real life. Another example might be making them sleepwalk? This would be a higher-level effect, maybe using Adnexus - which wouldn't normally work on its own - and Dormus to bring someone to the edge of sleep and convince them to walk somewhere, leading them off a cliff/into a bandit camp etc.

Does that sound appropriately balanced?

EDIT: I don't like that idea of sleepwalking, as it doesn't fit with the cardinal rule of not being able to directly affect/influence a non-dreamwalker. Perhaps we should just resign ourselves to the fact that Dreamweaving isn't meant to be a 'damaging' skill to non-dreamweavers?
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The weary feel my blessing and the Dark shall fear my might
For in a world of shadows,
I am theChild of Light.

"...You Rank, Gray-Skinned Codpiece! You sniveling, tear-streaked, coattail-grasping, orc-face!
You lumpish, cabbit-brained, daydream bully! You straw-limbed, gutless, sparkle-finger-wavin' Straylor!
-igrainne
(Silly girl, she's just jealous that he's getting more action than her)

Last edited by Quilantes Zil'aven; August 26, 2009 at 12:09 AM.
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Old August 25, 2009, 11:54 PM   #8 (permalink)
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OK, I think I'm done with this version of the Draft, unless someone can either
a) Tell me the name of the City of Reverie's nightmare counterpart
or
b) Suggest more underlying 'rules' of Dreamweaving apart from the three I've provided in Grandmaster Level Effects

I'll pretty it up and write up an example scenario for the more complex effects (maybe hide them in secrets boxes to save space) before posting a [Second Draft] in a few days. I'll add a link to it once it's posted. Please keep your suggestions coming guys
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Old August 26, 2009, 07:21 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Risthal doesn't have a city that's like Reverie on the Nightmare Plane. The entire plane is a hodgepodge of sewing from Oreniosk, and basically contains every fear imaginable sewed together in a sort of patchwork quilt type effect. You may first enter in a barren desert and meet a giant sandworm, then walk into a dark alleway where Jack the Ripper's twin cousin Jake is ready to dismantle you from the inside out.

It is likely hard for a Dreamweaver (Kaimelean Priest, whatever we're calling them) to navigate the Plane of Nightmares simply because it shifts often and their Dreamcatchers aren't exactly crafted to... guide them back to their own bodies. A Dreamweaver entering Risthal's personal realm probably runs high risk of becoming lost if they are alone. Similarly, a Twisted likely runs the risk of being injured or captured or whatever should they enter the Plane of Dreams.

The way I see it (this may not be entirely accurate)... Is that you have it set up like this:

Plane of Dreams -- Dreamscape -- Plane of Nightmares.

When I say "Dreamscape", I mean the actual sleeping minds of those who are not "Awakened" into their respective planes. Kaimelean Priests are "Awakened" into the Plane of Dreams - so they understand how to rip through their own dreams and walk into the actual Plane. Similarly, the Twisted are "pierced" in a sense that they know how to "rip through" their nightmares and walk into the Nightmare realm. And from there, they should be able to go into other dreams, sort of like a door-system, if you will, but cooler.

It is also possible that its set up in such a way that they intersect each other all over the place and followers from both sides have access to either, and the sleepers sit in between the planes. Like this:

Plane of Dreams - Sleeping Mortals - Plane of Nightmares.

Make sense?

It is also important to note that should Risthal ever start winning the battle between her and her older twin, it may very well be possible that the nightmare plane becomes dominant over the dream plane. Remember, the planes are very close if not one in the same / different aspects of the same realm. Its hard to explain, but they are very, very close and come in contact a lot.

Both planes have been described in detail in the respective Planetar writeups. These have been accepted into the Compendium, so I'd say their descriptions are accurate:

Quote:
The Plane of Dreams

The Plane of Dreams manifests differently for different people, but an overwhelming presence permeates the entire realm; this is the will of Kaimelea, Planetar of Dreams. Perception in the Plane of Dreams is ambiguous; though denizens have little difficulty knowing what is foreign to their reality, visitors and outsiders have a hard time differentiating between dreams and actuality, forever stuck in a limbo between sleep and awake, where a strange sensation of suspended reality hangs before them. At the heart of the Plane of Dreams is the river village of Reverie, named after the trance that seemingly befalls its fanciful inhabitants. The Material plain small groups of follower take its name from this village.

Priests and Priestesses of Kaimelea are often ‘awakened’ and once they Dreamwalk into The Plane of Dreams they learn a measure of ‘Dreamweaving’ that Kaimelea grants them for their faithfulness. This power allows them to move about and function within Her Realm. It does not translate back to the Material Realm, and hence has no effects therein. Dreamweaving allows Dreamers to manipulate the very fabric and landscape of the Dream Realm, and can often be used to either help or hurt visitors to this plane. Dreamweaving can also be used to draw outsiders into the Plane of Dreams.

Life in the Plane of Dreams is not entirely benevolent, for Kaimelea is just as likely to punish those who oppose her with tormenting nightmares. Yet in recent times, Kaimelea has apparently made her peace with the multiverse, and has crafted her plane as an adventurer's retreat for rest and relaxation. Among planar travelers, the Plane of Dreams is a renowned vacation destination, but with a high price of admission. Those who are touched by the shores of Reverie are thought to be forever altered, their inner psyche touched by the powerful forces that drive She Who Opens the Eye's quest to guide the walking-dreamers to lead her followers into the future.
Quote:
The Plane of Nightmares

The Plane of Nightmares appears to dreamers differently based on the fears that The Twisted is able to detect in their subconscious. Risthal’s realm is often described as horrendously dark and foreboding: a place of collection for all the emotions of dreamers that are released and channeled into the Plane by the The Twisteds. The overall realm permeates with a feeling of misgiving and is the embodiment of only the most terrorizing thoughts that could be evoked in the minds of mortals. Though the lighting is often dark, the entity of the realm is a mosaic of fractured nightmares, interwoven in emotion and seeded with Risthal’s own eternal fury.

The Plane of Nightmares also coexists with the Plane of Dreams, the home of Risthal’s twin sister, Kaimelea. Therefore, visitors to either plane are easily exchanged. Risthal is known to visit the Plane of Dreams in attempt to infect the Dream Weave on the Loom of Afterthought in Kaimelea’s City of Reverie, though her disciples are commonly kept away from the city itself. When a Follower of Kaimelea evokes a nightmare, Risthal is immediately aware and it is thought to be dangerous to draw her attention while serving her sister. It is not uncommon for The Azaru to be dispatched into the particular dream a Deliverer of Kaimelea is changing in order to counteract her attempts, and force her to exalt her greatest enemy.

A particular individual that has interested Risthal or one of her Twisted is said to be “pierced” by the Dream Scorcher; they are able to transcend into the Plane of Nightmares to commune with Risthal and revel in the nightmare alongside her. Risthal grants her followers the basic knowledge of Dream Possession once they have become pierced, which not only gives them the ability to walk with her in her own realm, but protects them from the horror that any normal mortal may experience should they be fully awakened into her domain, instead of having her terrible power filtered through the guise of a dream. As a function of worship, The Twisted are able to use Dream Possession to touch and infect the sleeping minds of others and evoke the emotions that Risthal demands to perpetuate her realm. Dream Possession does not grant any Material Plane related powers, and thus has no other purpose than to exalt the Planetar of Nightmares within her realm.

The Plane of Nightmares is the embodiment of stress, worry and fatigue. After a visit to this section of the multiverse, it is common that a sleeping mortal may awaken in cold sweats, with quickened heartbeats and feeling restless or exhausted. Because Risthal’s entire existence as a planetar manifested when she began to decimate those that persecuted her in her early life for her heritage, Risthal feels no remorse and is never comforting to any individual that is not a follower, and only the most devout followers are able to speak with Risthal candidly without the overbearing sense of fear that permeates the realm infecting their own hearts. It is said that when The Dream Scorcher takes hold of a follower’s heart, she demands the sacrifice of their restfulness – The Twisted will never feel rested in the Material Plane after being pierced again.
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Old August 27, 2009, 10:10 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Extremely cool!

I do have some concerns though with the basic concept of synergystic skills that add greatly to eachother's power, and I think we have to be careful here. For example, we wouldn't let someone learn Lvl1 sword fighting and then learn the technique of chopping someone to bite-sized nuggets as another skill; that would be a thing you'd have to learn at high level as part of the sword skill.

I think that it either needs to be merged into Dreamwalking, a completely seperate skill from Dreamwalking, or if it's going to be essentially a power add-on to Dreamwalking it needs to either have significant drawbacks (for example, you can't Dreamweave and be a Mage) or only be granted to Champions (or have some other access limitation feature).
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Old August 27, 2009, 10:25 AM   #11 (permalink)
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I've been thinking of how to work it into the greater Dreamwalking skill.

I'd like to merge it into Dreamweaving. Maybe all Dreamwalkers have the potential to do this, but have not crafted the Tools required. Like having a Master Druid reading a scroll that allows them to tame...humans for example, as a sub-set of the Druidic sphere. Not going to happen, but run with it :P. The Master Druid doesn't need to start at Novice level just because they've only just discovered the scroll. The problem with this is that there is no Dreamweaving skill write-up that I can - no pun intended - weave it into. And expanding this (already large) write-up to encompass not only the tools, but the nature of the Planes, the process of Dreamwalking/walking, the skill tree of the 'walking' part of it (to me it sounds like either you can or you can't, there isn't 'better' dreamwalker/weavers than others, are there?)... it all seems rather daunting.
If I was to do this, it wouldn't be small, and I've already seen Nimh warn worldforgers about the size of their write-ups.
I'm not sure I can do this skill justice with a limited word count :P
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"...You Rank, Gray-Skinned Codpiece! You sniveling, tear-streaked, coattail-grasping, orc-face!
You lumpish, cabbit-brained, daydream bully! You straw-limbed, gutless, sparkle-finger-wavin' Straylor!
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Old August 27, 2009, 11:37 AM   #12 (permalink)
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I don't think its really that long, Nimh is warning against multiple posts. If your writeup has to go over multiple posts, its too long. I think you're a long way from there still (my Risthal writeup was 9-12 pages in Word and still did not go into two posts).

As I have undestood it, Dreamwalking doesn't have a terribly progressive skill tree, or shouldn't, no? Perhaps you should make it so that like.. you can only handle x many tools while dream walking per level. Something like,

L1 = you learn to dreamwalk. You are able to enter basic dreams, and target people that are within the same "area" (city?) you are.
L2 = you learn to walk into anyone's dream on the continent but they are harder to find.
L3 = you learn to use 1 tool while dreamwalking. (Limit it to only Creos; manipulations at this level often cause the dreamer to awaken especially in the case of nightmares?)
L4 = you learn to use 2 tools while dreamwalking. (Limit it to Creos + Dormus or Flux)
L5 = you learn to use 3 tools while dreamwalking. (No limit; able to remove dream form in dream realms)

Perhaps L5+ are champion status only because one has to learn directly from Risthal or Kaimelea? Sure, they walk alongside them and interact with them sometimes, but just because you're in their planes doesn't mean they're talking to you or you even see them. I would think L5, maybe even L4, would be a study directly under the Planetars, which gives rise to the idea of being Champion/potential champion only. While this may restrict it to only a few PCs game-wide, that would be fine... because... even if she gives up a champion in lieu of someone else, that PC can still use the skill, and would just become like the old scholar that the other PCs would get a lot of value out of talking to.

*shrug* If the concern is more creating drawbacks to the skill, perhaps make the tools breakable in the dream realm. (Overuse = they break IRL?) Or perhaps if you use one improperly, you run the risk of losing yourself in that realm entirely (though some may want to do that lol) Or, you inflict physical harm upon yourself. Think about it - if my tools are knives, and I use one improperly in the dream realm, whose to say it didn't stab my arm in the material?

You also could make it so that any dream manipulation with the items has a chance to go horribly wrong (like, Twisted manipulation gone wrong = happy bunny dreams, Kaimelean dream manipulation = horrible nightmares). Or perhaps the dreamweaver runs the risk of losing control of the dream itself, or becoming trapped in the dream until the sleeper awakens the next morning. Or in some cases acoma because the person is in acoma.

Or! you could make it so that the two are linked when harm happens? This would be chiefly a problem for the Twisted - perhaps if they are able to bind a Kaimelean priest to inflict damage, they also wake up feeling bruised and beaten the next morning too. Or should the twisted be facilitating a nightmare with one of these tools, their heart is not without their own fear as well.

This could also adversely affect your own skills in the dream realm (as I believe the way Aqua et. al had it set up, your skills generally translated over in some form or another) Perhaps the use of tools knocks them down in level or something?

And, well, this might change it from a trades writeup, but you also might consider giving it the prerequisite of being unbound, or being a mystic. Kaimelea claims Mysticism and most Mystics should respect one or the other if they know anything about them.
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- I'm friends with the monster that's under my bed; I get along with the voices inside of my head...
"It was written that I should be loyal to the nightmare of my choice."

- CIR - SoF - Risthal - The Twisted -

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Old August 27, 2009, 12:04 PM   #13 (permalink)
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I think your chance of waking up should be affected by your skill in Meditation. It's a recognised skill, but doesn't have a write-up as it's essentially a secondary skill you use to improve/enhance skills like arcana and divination.

I think the idea of having tools 'restricted' to certain levels is a good one, although I'm adverse to only having one available from level 3 and up. If you think of the small amount of PC's that dreamwalk, even fewer of that are at an appreciable level. I'd be surprised if more than one PC at a time had access to the Tools then :P

Perhaps each level in Dreamwalking allows the PC to craft another tool? The Tools leech power off the bearer to work properly, and the better you are at dreamwalking, the more potent you are at manipulating the Dream Plane. That way, if a Novice tried to have more than a single tool, the added 'weight' of this tool would inhibit their ability to Dreamwalk.
L1 = you learn to dreamwalk. You are able to enter basic dreams, and target people that are within the same "area" (city?) you are. Dormus can be crafted, allowing the Novice to move between the Material Plane and the Dream Plane easier while they are still unused to Dreamwalking.
L2 = you learn to walk into anyone's dream in the Province (Eunesia, Lauryll, AP etc). Creos can now be used, heightening the Dreamwalker's ability to manipulate the dreams/nightmares of those around them.
L3 = you can now reach any dream in Aelyria. Flux is now able to be crafted, allowing the Journeyman Dreamwalker to venture into their opposing Realm. Note: the ability to cross between the two Realms is impossible for Apprentices & Novices without the help of an opposing Dreamwalker.
L4 = you can now sense the dreams of Great Races, such as Dragons, Treants, Graces, etc. Adnexus is now available to the Master Dreamwalker, allowing them to inflict corporeal damage upon their opposing Dreamwalker opponents, as well as the ability to Dreamtravel through the dreams of Lesser Races.
L5 = Rumoured to be able to spectate upon the dreams of Deities, Planetars and Ancient Aelyrians. Dreamtravelling through a Great Races dream is now possible, as is the ability to craft Exsulis the Banished.

I can readjust the effects/combinations of these for appropriate levelling, or should we not restrict which Tools are associated with which level? If it's a 'Get 1 Free Tool' deal every time you level up, it will allow more flexible role-playing. More daring characters might opt for the Banished as a Novice, forgoing the other 'basic' benefits until later. In that case I think the effects/combinations can stay the same.

P.S. lolled at Tia's comment; "Twisted manipulation gone wrong = happy bunny dreams" ARGH! *Twisted recoils in panic* TEH BUNNEHS!!!
P.P.S. Quill isn't evil, he just uses immoral methods to punish wrong-doers.
P.P.P.S. Why are some peoples names yellow and others standard (in my Everwood skin that's green)?
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"...You Rank, Gray-Skinned Codpiece! You sniveling, tear-streaked, coattail-grasping, orc-face!
You lumpish, cabbit-brained, daydream bully! You straw-limbed, gutless, sparkle-finger-wavin' Straylor!
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Old August 27, 2009, 02:14 PM   #14 (permalink)
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(On why names are yellow and green, you may choose to display what groups you are a membership of in the User Control Panel under "Group Memberships". People who have selected player are green, people who have selected companion are yellow.)

That might be possible. I know what you mean about the tool thing, perhaps despite being uneducated in how to use them, if a person were to attempt to have more than one tool, they are exponentially more likely to reveal themselves in the dreams or nightmares? I dont believe that either side wants themselves to be known within the dream, merely they are a spectator manipulating without the knowledge of the dreamer. Only the most lucid dreamers would realize, in most cases, that the forms of the dreamwalkers are actually the dreamwalkers.

Example:
Tiarela's form is that of a dead skeleton bird. Tiarela sits on a branch in a nightmare and is manipulating it without moving. As the scene changes, the same dead bird is perched in various parts of the scene. The dreamer is too frightened to notice this, but may realize upon waking that there was a common motif in the nightmare (the dead bird on a branch). A lucid dreamer might, however, know they are dreaming and catch on to the manipulating twisted or kaimelean priest, you know?

And then the nightmare becomes mute, because they know its not real. Same thing with a restful dream. If I know I'm not really at the beach playing in the sand and sipping on a long island ice tea, then I won't be as relaxed. So not revealing themselves would be important.

I think with those restrictions it might not be as big of a power deal, and the entire purpose of dreamwalkers are to manipulate dreams and fight the opposite faction, so to speak. So since Dreamwalking doesn't really have a writeup, perhaps you should combine that with this, so that we can detail out what exactly you can do, how its done, and what tools you use to do it?

I'm tempted to start a faction writeup on The Twisted this weekend, so that maybe I can explain their Ethos Pathos and Logos a bit more concretely, btw. Do you think that would be helpful to have too?
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- I'm friends with the monster that's under my bed; I get along with the voices inside of my head...
"It was written that I should be loyal to the nightmare of my choice."

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Old August 27, 2009, 02:44 PM   #15 (permalink)
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I'd like to go back to the point that Cat made, here - could these tools be accessible to Champions? I mean - there is a lot of power here.

Or have I missed that discussion? Maybe followers could utilise one of the tools well, but the risk increases each time - only those who have been granted Champion status can use all five, or something?
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