Monstrous Compendium ALO Factions

Here’s my ALO factions revamp for the AU MC ‘verse. Five elemental “factions”; the 4 classic elements, plus Secrets. Note – there are an uneven number of races/clans in each faction. Any suggestions for evening out the numbers? Reclassifying some, or a few other youkai/ D&D humanoid monsters to toss in?

Unaffiliated (Might specialize in any):

Humans. Half-orcs. Half-ogres (Oni). Werewolves. Draconics – specialized as per dragon type.

Fire (“Aosagibi”):

Aosagibi – winged fire half-elves. Bakeneko. Kitsune (Fire/Secrets). Were-cougar (Fire/Earth). Were-tiger (Fire/Water).

Draconics: red, gold, brass (Fire/Earth).

5 + 1 (from Air) = 6 total Fire.

Air (“Avariel”)

Alurin – half-succubus. Avariel – winged half-elves. Hari-onna (plenty of hair colors). Swanmay. (Who have a winged “angel” form, not just swans.) Tengu (Air/Earth). Were-bat (Air/Earth). Were-eagle (Air/Fire). Were-owl (Air/Secrets).

Draconics: green, silver, white (Air/Water)

8 + 1 (from Water) = 9 total Air.

Water (“Ayakashi”)

Aquatic half-elves. Selkie. Snow leopard youkai (Water/ Secrets). Were-crocodile. Were-shark. Were-snake (Water/ Secrets). Yuki-onna (Water/Air).

Draconics: black, bronze, white (Air/Water) 7 + 1 from Fire = 8 total Water.

Earth (“Tanuki”)

Forest half-elves. Tanuki. Nezumi (rat youkai). Werebear. Wereboar. Wereferrets/ wereweasels (Earth/Secrets).

Draconics: blue, copper, desert, brass (Fire/Earth).

6 + 1 (from Fire) + 2 (from Air) = 9 total Earth.

Secrets (“Naga”)

Half-drow. Medusa. Jorougumo.

Draconics: deep, faerie, fang.

3 + 1 (from Fire) + 1 (from Air) + 2 (from Water) = 7 total Secrets.

And if you’re familiar with Eberron, take a wild guess why there are specifically five factional areas…. 😉

 

Advertisements

35 thoughts on “Monstrous Compendium ALO Factions

  1. >And if you’re familiar with Eberron, take a wild guess why there are specifically five factional areas…. 😉>
    -Quick search-
    Because there are five big nations in Eberron ( Aundair, Breland, Cyre, Karrnath, and Thrane) maybe?

    Aside from that, a rich selection of weird and wonderful species for individuals to pick from. In all likelihood Kirito is going to have to deal with a sister/cousin that is no longer human with and when she gets yanked into this.

    However Suguha gettting yanked into this would mean Midori and Minetaka losing both their children.
    😥
    Unless of course they get pulled along for the ride but I can’t see how.

    Then there would be the question what species Suguha would chose as a game avatar.

    While an Alurin could result in some amusing reactions (the innocent succubus unknowingly causing guys to crash into walls):
    Klein: “His sister. Kirito’s kid sister. Bad Klein, remember the bro code!”
    However I can’t see her picking it and her character is more then mere fan-service.

    Hmm Avariel or Swanmay for the flight and agility (she’d take something that could sword fight well). Though it could be medusa for I know.

    For massive bonus SoB points to Beniryuu, Suguha’s randomly generated appearance as a Medusa, ‘just happens’ to strongly resemble Stheno’s lost sister.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. However Suguha gettting yanked into this would mean Midori and Minetaka losing both their children.

      Unless of course they get pulled along for the ride but I can’t see how.

      Midori was a MMO gamer. If he was overseas, they might well have used a VRMMORPG as a way to keep in contact.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. >I have a plan for the Kirigayas. It involves Recon. 😉>
        -Thinks back to actions by said player in canon-
        -Considers the fact that real magic is probably going to be involved here-
        If you were attempting to be reassuring with that statement, you failed. 😛

        Like

  2. On a more serious note, in regards to balancing the number of races in each ‘faction’ the only thing I could suggest is moving some of the duel element races into different groups.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. A second thought on the subject would be thinking about what mechanical role each race would play in the game. Because presumably this is a PvP style MMO much like the canon ALO

        For example from what I can tell, Air has multiple naturally flying races while fire has one and water/earth have none. Thematically accurate sure, but you have to consider the most annoying thing in games: balance between factions.

        So Air has a ton of natural flyers from level one. How are Water and Earth going to deal with them without having items allowing flight (expensive and high level), tons of ranged fighters (most fighter types tend to go for melee specializations) or magic users (fewer at low levels).

        It’s not like the Air faction is going to land while fighting them in order to make things fair.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. In the air you don’t have much natural cover or concealment. On the ground you can store and carry more weight, to include ammunition for missile weapons. If the factions are balanced strategically, as armies, Air having more flyers at a low level may not matter much, if low level flyers have only situational advantages skirmishing and scouting, and are better used on the ground in massed shock infantry combat.

        Plus, every faction has dragons, who are the heavy flyers with a high damage and a high cap on racial power.

        Fire has bakeneko, were tigers, and were cougars. Fast twitch ambushers with less endurance. Probably stealthy, and patient, with high damage abilities that you charge up, use at the same time, and have a long cool down.

        Were-bear and were-boar suggest that earth is relatively tanky, endurance, and shock infantry. They tend to win in large group combat that goes on a long time.

        I’d guess that water armies might be, like fire, between earth and air in terms of most effective army scale, and trading off advantages. But, I would guess that water would have the best strategic mobility, except where it doesn’t have any.

        Secrets feels like special effects (poison, petrification, etc…), intelligence, and smaller scale operations.

        Humans and wolves are long term endurance pursuit hunters. Anyway, kinda suggests that dog youkai would fit there, and maybe composition of unaligned armies.

        That said, today I’m not thinking clearly, so anything useful here is at best a suggestion for redoing the analysis from first principles.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. >Plus, every faction has dragons, who are the heavy flyers with a high damage and a high cap on racial power.>
        That’s the thing, I don’t read said races as being dragons.

        Vathara specifically calls them Draconics, not Dragons (those would be pretty OP compared to other races). And a little search around gave me three options for what these creatures could be.

        1. Mortals of varying races that have draconic ancestry. The classic ‘half-dragons’ you see in older editions of D&D.
        2. Draconians, but those are a Dragonlance-verse creation so unlikely.
        3. The dragonborn. And these are canon to Eberron.
        http://eberron.wikia.com/wiki/Dragonborn

        Three makes the most sense to me because while the race has potential to be power (and the player can have heritage leading back to any dragon type) they are far more balanced with the other races.

        Like

      4. Now that you mention it, that’s correct.

        The ‘dragon’ bit is absolutely my error.

        I still feel I might be onto to something with regards to balance between faction armies. (I figure Air has a few, rare, expensive ariships, water has better or more secure access to shipping, earth is better at building and maintaining roads, and fire I guess has better muleskinners. Secrets I guess might be more occult passages.)

        I think your point about looking at what each race does mechanically is worth expanding. What is ALO’s niche in the player ecology, and what does it do to attract those players? There are forty or fifty player races. Are they all optimized or balanced for combat? In what way? Are there races made for crafters, roleplayers, etc.? What are those races?

        Realistically, there’d be some effort made towards marketing, and character creation choices would either have obvious documented pros and cons, or there would only be a few available at start, with more added as the player base can handle the complexity.

        Like

      5. >I still feel I might be onto to something with regards to balance between faction armies. (I figure Air has a few, rare, expensive ariships, water has better or more secure access to shipping, earth is better at building and maintaining roads, and fire I guess has better muleskinners. Secrets I guess might be more occult passages.)>

        Don’t think we can get that deep into infrastructure and trade. If we take canon SAO, ALO and even IRL MMORPGs, there are limits to player-driven economy.

        In SAO/ALO the higher end gear did tend to be player-made (or monster drops) but it was always far more limited in supply then what you could get from NPCs. And while I’m not super familiar with WoW, a fair number of services are solely run by NPCs.

        Assuming that the skill systems work like canon SAO/ALO (I never found D&D rules to be very robust when it came to making your own stuff) the player economy would primarily consist of crafters, farmers/gatherers and dedicated fighters though there could be overlap in the roles.

        Lisbeth and Kirito’s quest for the crystal dragon poo would be an example of a crafer/gatherer being protected by a dedicated fighter so she could collect rare materials.

        In the end there are two economies in these MMOs. The theoretically unlimited in-game cash sink where you toss money at the NPCs for basic things and player barter/trading where they are exchanging various goods and services for higher end things.

        Like

      6. True enough.

        The excuse I have for going there is that ‘D&D’ covers a wide range of play. It came out of strategic gaming, so some of the grognards would have seen nothing wrong with house ruling it to include such extensively detailed systems.

        ACKS apparently comes from the house rules of someone who really likes the domain game and strategic wargaming in one of the older versions of D&D.

        This fic is probably not focusing heavily on that side of the D&D spectrum. But that side does exist, and authorial fiat could let Kayaba’s magical AI handle GMing it.

        Like

  3. Did the existing structure of your fic buy you enough time to make changes based on suggestions or will you have to slow down to accommodate both them and Seeds? By the way, how’s that going?

    Like

  4. Two secrets, one water, three fire, up to five (or maybe more) unspecialized.

    Lesse. Given the snake, and the eastern theming, there should be a turtle or tortoise youkai or lycanthrope in water.

    Likewise fire should have a were-phoenix. Rounding out fire, perhaps a djinn, and a fire giant variant with a leveled ability to increase in size. Perhaps ala Attack on Titan and perhaps more directly norse inspired than is default for D&D.

    Secrets, doppelgangers, and since I just reread the first 57 chapters of Sic Semper Morituri, some kind of hobo-shoggoth. (Prototype’s Mercer is more what people think of, but that isn’t necessarily very playable. Perhaps an ooze lycanthrope?)

    The other ideas are angels, archons, xingtian, cranes and unicorns. The last two again being the type with alternate humanoid forms. I especially like angels for any elemental affinity.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. My ‘Argo is a shipgirl’ thing has kicked in, and informed me that I’ve made a terrible mistake.

      I think Argo is probably a Druid/Monk with a prestige class. Druid because in the games her ALO char is a Cait Sith, the catgirls who are monster tamers. Monk because she fights with claws.

      In one of the versions of the Argonautica, the Argo is made by the mortal Argus to the plans of Athena. One key component is made from wood from a specific sacred grove, and hence has powers of divination.

      I think one of the any affinity races should be plant based. Like a dryad, an ent, or glorantha’s elves. I think it should have powers based on the totem tree or plant, and I think Argo’s should be a sacred tree of divination that gives her an affinity for such powers.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Half-dryad makes me think of a specific character from Dave Drake’s Books of the Elements. Which are great, but not quite what I had in mind.

        In Argonautica, this wooden part would at times prophesy and tell the Argonauts where they should go. IIRC, the implication is that it does this because it was itself once a tree involved in oracles.

        So my intent was either a construct youkai made of the wood of such a tree, or something that is a tree taking human form, who was such a tree.

        Shapeshifting and tree fit druid, and IIRC the druids get reincarnation, which might suggest a rarer spell for giving a tree the ability to turn into an (at first) level one human. The idea of Argo shapeshifting between Rat and Catgirl, and Tree forms amuses me.

        That said, Argo is probably already defined for this story.

        Liked by 1 person

      1. A mundane ooze lycanthrope might have a lot of utility use at a table that allows such things. Doors locked from the other side and such. Even without the strength, sensory, and fine manipulation that the hobo shoggoth in SSM had.

        Question is, what kind of table is the game? Given MMO, it may well have gone with the more recent heavy combat focus.

        Like

  5. Do you need to have more from Secrets to match the totals of the other races? Could there be a few races that keep it a secret that they *are* a dual-type race, or that are entirely unknown, because, well, it’s a secret…

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Hmm, if we have a ‘secrets’ faction, that seems like a group that would infiltrate other factions, for giggles if nothing else. Natural distrust for players that choose a ‘secrets’ race, maybe?

    Liked by 1 person

  7. You might keep the different number of races, perhaps have races with same elemental affinities concentrate on different aspects. Also, two or three low count races could match up to one with a higher population, balancing things, while permitting higher diversity if needed.

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s