E is for Esper


This article is part of a series for both the April 2020 RPG Blog Carnival and the 2020 Blogging A to Z Challenge.

EsperIn this world of wind and wave, control is the guiding force. Esper is a world of vast seas, wind-carved cliffs, and skies of carefully managed clouds. The ruling mages and sphinxes control and craft its every element. On Esper, life is considered to be inherently flawed, and so all living things are perfected with infusions of a magical alloy called etherium. The integration of this aether-infused metal grants them longer life spans and increased mastery over arcane energies.

Esper is ruled by a race of wise and inscrutable sphinxes. Below them, the vedalken and humans hone their own mastery over magic to control their surroundings and the minds of others. Their minions include gargoyles, drakes and strixes that fill the skies. Golems, lower-ranked mages, and artifical creatures called homunculi populate the retinues of mages as they parade through cities of etherium and steel.

Deep under the landmasses of Esper, in the waste-pits and flooded tunnels known as Tidehollow, thrives a second, shadowy ecosystem of refuse golems, aether-liches and the undead guides known as scullers. The pristine, mage-driven civilization of Esper and its sinister underworld live symbiotically, supporting each other through the power of etherium.

«Reunification will come with a deadly price.»


For your campaign

Esperites believe all life is flawed and incomplete without an intrinsic connection to aether, the essence of the universe. Through nonstop experimentation, they have devised complex magic that enables them to artificially supplement any living thing with etherium, a mysterious alloyu infused with aether. Almost all living things on Esper have a small amount of etherium fused with their anatomy. The line between organic and artificial has not been totally eliminated, but it has certainly been blurred.

iKOlSR2E5Erss9mMsUhpUBXGtudckCk8PYQG8SYteAYNew material: Etherium

According to the myth, etherium was created by the sphinx Crucius, and since then most of Esper’s inhabitants have parts of their body replaced by etherium. The body’s functions are kept up through a series of complex enchantments. It is unknown, though, how Crucius made the alloy, and it’s very likely that it can’t be produced in Esper, and Crucius gets it elsewhere, planeswalking.

Items made of etherium provide different benefits depending on their main function. While weapons made of etherium allow their wielders to use their spellcasting ability to determine their attack and damage bonus, magic items that require attunement, don’t count against the maximum items a character can be attuned to. They still don’t allow a character to attune to more than one copy of an item, even if the other one is not made of etherium.

The rarity of an item made of etherium increases one degree up to «very rare»: for example, a common item becomes uncommon, and a rare one becomes very rare.


Do you think some spellcasters will start wielding melee weapons made of etherium now that they will be able to use their wits and personality to imbue their attack?

3 Comentarios Agrega el tuyo

  1. juanrusso dice:

    Your description of Espeth, is like if the Iron Islands of the Greyjoys from Game of Thrones have gone through a magic cataclysm… cool!

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