World of Ara
Welcome to Ara. A table top roleplaying ruleset that brings the focus to the roleplay and story telling element of gaming. In Ara players are guided by a story teller through a series of opportunities and reactions. The story teller presents the players with an opportunity and the players must react to it. This generic attitude to driving the narrative allows for a fluid response to changes in the story as it progresses. Below you will find the resources required to learn how to drive the game as a story teller and how to respond to the story as a player.
Most commonly the first thing to consider when creating a character, is race. Race governs the primary appearance of the character as well as how long they’re likely to live and how other sentients in the world may react to them. The world of Ara is incredibly diverse, and your story teller may govern their iteration of the world differently to others. Below are just a few examples of races you might want to include in your game.
The Elven races evolved as a direct consequence of the discovery of magic by the human races. Over exposure during the early days of trying to harness and control the power of magic created an evolution of the human race that were particularly susceptible to it. Over time and as the understanding of magic improved the effects deteriorated and what remained was purely cosmetic. Elves live shorter lives than humans with an average lifespan of only 65 years. Elves are shorter than humans in statures, have larger eyes, larger pointed ears and sharper facial features. In their early existence they were considered a mistake and shunned by the other races, elements of this racism continue to exist in modern society. Elves exist predominantly in urban areas.
Faerie folk are the oldest of creatures in Ara. They are small, fly, and are particularly responsive to atmospheric changes around them. They are a curious folk but have little understanding of the newer races. Faeries live long lives with an average lifespan of 150 years and though they are not many in number the other sentient races have learnt to consider them as makers of mischeif or omens of luck. All faeries have wings, tall pointed ears, colourful hair and slender bodies. They can reach heights of up to 8 inches tall. Faeries are found more predominantly in the wilds but caf
Goblins are a tough and numerous race, standing between 3’ and 4’ tall goblins are frequently seen as lesser folk. Historically goblins have focussed their efforts towards engineering and developing technology as they are naturally less attuned to the forces of magic in Ara. They are responsible for a lot of the mechanical contributions to the world including steam boats, automobiles and various industrial machines for use in production. Goblins have a short life span of an average of 50 years.
Humans in Ara are jack of all trades, with an average life span of 80 years and an ambitious drive humans play a major role in governance and research. They stand between 5’ and 7’ tall and are some of the more diverse in appearace. Many of the other races would confuse human ambition for arrogance and hold humans at fault for the creation and mistreatment of the elves. Humans have a reasonable grasp of both magic and technology.
The Leonin are a proud feline race, they stand tall between 6’ and 8’ and are covered in fur. All leonin are capable of growing manes, but the practice is done mostly by those in positions of power or those aspiring towards such positions and most are content to keep their fur cropped. Maybe the only race more ambitious than the humans the leonin are fiercely proud. They are the most populous of races within the arid lands of Ara and as such have become the symbolic leaders of the Imperial Conquest. Leonin share a life span similar to that of humans and live an average of 80 years.
Orcs are a complicated and solitary race. What they lack in numbers they make up for in intelligence and they have a natural affinity to magic unlike others. As a result most orcs live in communes dedicated to the study of magic and lead spiritual sects to provide specialised magics to the world. Orcs are lucky to reach 5’ tall, they have dark skin and mostly hairless. Their appearance is considered frightening to most when combined with their snappy attitudes. Though on the surface many orcs may appear impatient, their patience is only matched by their passion to accomplish perfection. Orcs can live an average of 100 years.
Skaeven are perhaps the most populous of races on Ara and are comprised of various rodentia. Chief among the skaeven are the ratfolk who took on the responsibility of governing and maintaining the race during their early tribal days. Many of the other races are cautious of skaeven and consider the ratfolk the most mistrustful of all. This myth is perpetuated by the ratfolk themselves in order to convince people to leave them alone. Skaeven life spans range between 30 and 70 years with ratfolk living longer than most. People resembling squirrels, mice, and hamsters are also found within the skaeven race. Skaeven occupy all works of life.
After selecting a race, appearance and name, the next thing players should do is allocate their intial points amongst their characters attributes. In Ara there are three core elements to a sentient creature and this is called the Aran Triumvirate by scholars. These three elements each govern an additional two properties that govern the abilities of the creature. A player starts with 9 points that they can allocate, a sub property can only be raised as high as it’s governing element.
Body governs the properties of Strength and Quickness as well as the general hardiness of and represents the physical capabilities of the creature. Creatures with a higher affinity to the body element may become strong warriors or agile athletes.
Strength governs the abilities of the character where their physical body may be used as a tool to overcome an opportunity as well as their general health.
Quickness governs the abilities of the character where their physical body may be used in a reactionary manner to overcome an opportunity as well as their overall speed.
Mind governs the properties of Willpower and Guile as well as the creatures natural mental fortitude, it represents the abilities of a creatures mental capacity.
Willpower governs the abilities of the character where their mental fortitude may be targeted by an opportunity as well as their natural resistance.
Guile governs the abilities of the character when their ability to think quickly comes into play in regards to an opportunity as well as their natural perception.
Spirit governs the properties of Essence and Control and represents the creatures affinity with the magical elements of Ara.
Essence governs the ability of the character to draw on natural magics around them in response to an opportunity as well as their innate capacity.
Control governs the ability of the character to command and direct magics around them in response to an opportunity as well their natural regeneration.
There are no strict classes within Ara, but it is important for the player to consider how their character will respond to situations and what that characters history would position themselves as within the world. What is possible for the characters to achieve when reacting to an opportunity can be determined by an agreed consensus between the story teller and the player. It is important to establish your character with a genuine personality whose development can be traced through the opportunities they are presented with. To this end a character with a military past may be considered a fighter, a character engaged with larceny may be considered a rogue and so on though there is no concrete definition or rulesets that can be applied; the story teller may let the rogue engage with lockpicking a door where they may prefer the fighter attempts to break in with brute force instead.