The World of Origin

The Old World and The Great Undoing

“Nobody remembers the Old World, but it is everywhere – taunting us like bygone sunshine. I see the Temple Ruins, I find scraps of the old culture, hear whispers of unearthed contraptions and bountiful magics – but it’s all buried in the sands of time now – all we have left is Miasma and a great Mystery” Munireå, of a Saat Sammaan treasure hunting team, as recorded in the Book of Cassio

The world is a vast place, and all who walk it know of the old legends. You, the player, live amongst the Old World and the Evidence of the past apocalypse every day, but you probably only have personal conviction to tell you what caused it or how long ago it was. The Great Undoing is truly the mystery to end all mysteries. 

“Nasty business, Apocalypses are. Ended the previous age, brought us into this current perilous one. Probably birthed all these sodden Great Beasts we got to dance around. A blighted nuisance, by all accounts.” Lioran Merchant, upon commencing trade of an old world artefact, overheard conversation

As a player, the Old World may be your Primary concern, or it may be a blip of random knowledge on your path of continued survival, but whatever the case, you are aware of it, and many of the stories and legends you grew up with speak of what came before. 

“The Before is believed to be a time of prosperity but little else is known about it. Some say the Miasma appeared and bought it to an end, some say there was a war, some say it was forsaken by the Gods, though which Gods those are, only Providence knows. Whatever the truth, it is long gone now.” Wei RuLan, Hunter from Jade Mountains, Silk scroll


“Honestly, I have no idea how it works, but I feel it. I was born a Void mage, and the spirits gifted me my Protection spells. One is raw instinct – Elemental and fundamental – fulled by emotion and power. The other is worshipful and purposeful – full of faith and belief. They say anyone might have the potential for magic. I say, if that’s true, then I am lucky to have realised such wonders.” – Mikio Aratani, Magical advisor to Shogun Sosurai

Magic is a rare but wondrous commodity in the world of Origin. Some cultures ostracise certain types of it, some aggrandize magic specialists in particular fields. Whether the wielder is an Elementalist or a Hierophant, magic responds to their beck and call. Nature, culture and belief itself may be shaped by its passing. 


“Well, it’s like magic fog, but it ‘urts, an’ it comes in flavours. Some ‘urt different than others. It kills ya if you stay in it too long. Sometimes it comes in fiery waves, sometimes a hurricane made a’ iron splinters an’ rolling thunder, but it’s bad news all o’ the time. Monsters come with it, them Great Beasts love it. There’s bits o’ it everywhere, an’ it’s poison, ain’t it? S’ why we all wear masks – that, an’ for avoiding the King’s tax collectors.” – anon. Kingsvalley peasant, overheard conversation explaining Miasma to a young child 

Miasma is a damaging force, sometimes akin to a highly localised weather front and a poisonous fog. It permeates the air through many Lands, and many go to great lengths to avoid breathing it in. Very few people can survive longer than a few seconds in concentrated Miasma. Most avoid it at all costs, as with Miasma come the Great Beasts – creatures of legend who are difficult, if not impossible to kill.

Miasma pools are present in the world of Origin. Most miasma has elemental affinities which may grant certain characters a resistance to it. Miasmatic areas inflict “fatal” damage on any character that enters it without a mask immediately, unless they have a resistance to that specific Miasma type. Characters undergo their death count as normal in Miasma. Characters with masks can survive for 20 seconds in Miasma before taking a “Fatal”. Resistant characters can survive for three minutes before taking a “fatal” call. For example; “Miasma: Fire” would mean Fire Mages and fire resistant creatures can survive under miasma conditions for three minutes before they must take a “Fatal” call. 

Lands and Groups

“I’ve seen many Peoples and the lands from which they hail – from everywhere between the Oldwood and the Steppe. Some Bands are formed from families, some mercenary companies, some out of survival & necessity. Packs of hunters, gaggles of friendless orphans, Dukedoms, priesthoods – they may not call themselves Families, but that’s what they are – lost ones who found each other – perhaps united by a religion, cause, culture or race. There’s a lot of strange folk out there just trying to get by, just like us.” Excerpt from a fireside conversation with a Roadweaver Caravan Guard

Lands are areas that consist of Peoples related (sometimes distantly) by shared values, culture, politics or Miasma boundaries. Many have similar beliefs or worship the same Gods. Groups are usually close knit people who rely on each other for survival. These groups can number anywhere between 2 and 200, and can often show as much variance as the Lands they hail from. Free agents likewise roam their Lands, surviving solitarily or looking for a Group to belong to. 

“Lands? Perhaps a simplification, but a useful one. Everyone must come from somewhere, after all. All a Land is, by our definition at least, is an area where the people within recognise similar customs, manners, traits, or share a similar knowledge of the local area. It’s a vague grouping, and Providence knows that it is usually ineffectual at gauging a person’s true merit, but as a guideline it can be useful to know where a person hails from. It has prevented me from being rude to many a traveller.”  – A Diplomat from Abalus Vastitas conversing about foreign dignitaries


“They are there to stop you breathing in Miasma – that fog you see over there? I can’t believe you haven’t seen a Miasma cloud before! I know you don’t like it, but if you want to come hunting you better wear it – when the fog hits you’ll be thanking me. Why is mine made of cloth? It’s adapted for the Miasma in the Oldwood, just like how the Liorans adapt theirs for the fog in the city. Why is mine so decorative? It scares off the Bumbleweed – they don’t like the light reflecting off the beads, plus it looks nice. What? No! You can’t have it, the beads aren’t worth anything!” Aoife Shilva, a Tir, overheard in conversation with a Nvord

Masks are a standard item that act as a filter to stop humans from breathing in low-level Miasma, and allow a wearer to bear a few seconds of concentrated Miasma. Sometimes, those few seconds are all it takes to avoid death, and survival in the world of Origin is paramount. Over time masks have become points of shared culture between disparate Groups, and many folks can be geographically placed by mask alone. 


“Amongst all the myriad Gods, Providence is the name most worshipped and who possesses the most faces; worshipped as a pantheon-leading sun-god with 5 names by some, the Goddess of survival by others, or as a great dormant world-birthing spirit by many. Providence’s most popular form is as the center-piece to the monotheistic main religions of central Abalus, southern Kingsvalley and High Liore.” – Bjørn Nilsen, River Lorekeeper, Notes on Providencia

Providence is the most recognised God amongst many of the Lands, and will often be used as a shared monolith or invitation to hospitality amongst those of shared believership. Shrines to Providence are regular throughout the many lands of Origin, and even the most reclusive of Groups and survivors will have heard their name. The symbol of Providence is a vertical line cutting through the diameter of a circle.


Groups often do not have much need for money when survival is on the line – people here trade in Food. Origin uses a small denomination Food token to represent the rations of a single meal. Large denomination Food tokens represent the rations for a whole day. Monsters and creatures may be drawn to Food, and Players will have to regularly hunt and forage for it. Likewise, Hunts and Forages take a lot of energy, so food must be expended in order to go hunting or use energetic skills.