Gate of Souls
The Gate of Souls universe is a potentially vast and rich environment, designed to create the kind of space in which truly epic story lines that span centuries and nations can exist. It has a very interconnected ecosystem, consisting of a planescape that is somewhat reminiscent of the D&D 3/3.5 cosmology. The abilities of characters and their enemies are designed to feel extensive and powerful, while at the same time still adhering to a system that allows for reasonable balance between them. That is, while a character may feel epic shaping mountains to their whim, they are still facing opponents that can be respected or feared when their enemies fly through the sky and rain flaming death upon the battlefield. Regions and xp can be scaled so that the character feels as though they are at most any power level comparable to those in power around them, though they should always feel a step above the common inhabitants of the realms.
Due to special rules regarding travel and landscape in the universe, the world may seem as small or large as the Storyteller desires. Chaotic landscapes and a need for constant travel to keep paths safe can be exaggerated or minimized in order to make the focus areas of the game seem closer or more distant. The more stable the landscape the smaller the world, as the means to cover large distances in a short time frame are relatively easily accessible. Flying creatures, Attunement powers, vehicles, and planar travel can all serve to ‘shrink’ the landscape; While the stretches of wild and dangerous madness make borders that much more significant.
The tone of the game is intended to lean towards darkness in atmosphere, but encourage heroic behavior. Thoughts and ideals work to shape reality, and thus those who possess strong ill-intent may quickly gather power to enforce their will on the hapless. However noble goals possess the same power, and so idealists must rise and stand against the creep of apathy or general wickedness, lest entire nations slip into darkness of the soul ruled by foul spirits and feeding the demonic hosts. In some ways tyranny is encourages, as those who force others to their own ideals give those ideals a stronger presence. The races of the world work constantly to reinforce their own racial stereotypes, a cycle that maintains their identity and keeps their children from succumbing to uncertainty and transforming into abominations. At the same time, inspiration can solidify a community as firmly as tyranny, perhaps even more so. This approach is more difficult for the average ruler however, and they tend toward the quick and easy path.
Whatever the size or tenor of the world, the most important aspect about the Gate of Souls is that the world revolves around ideals, for good or ill the souls of it’s inhabitants are reflected in the world. It is the nature of their hearts that stirs creation’s gaze.