A&O Setting

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Initial Setting[edit]

Before there was a World of Darkness ...

There was the First Age of Man.

The Exalted, the Chosen of the Gods, rule Creation directly. The world is hammered into shape out of the Wyld at the behest of the Solar Exalted, chosen of the Unconquered Sun. But as time goes on, these Lawgivers who once shone so brightly begin to show their true colors. Their empire grows decadent and fat. They fall ever deeper into infernalism, sadism and cruelty as the years go by.

The Sidereal Exalted, chosen of the Five Maidens, gather to foretell a Great Prophecy. Three futures lie ahead. One where they lead the Dragon Blooded footsoldiers against their Solar masters and preserve the Empire in a lesser, but stable, state. One, where they attempt to defeat the Solars directly and all magic is destroyed in the crossfire creating a world of cold hard rationality with no wonder or amazement. The third, where the Sidereals serve their role and warn the Solars of their future and it is up to them to make it a a good one or a terrible one.

In this timeline the Five-Score Fellowship decided to warn the Solars. This created a civil war followed by religious inquisition and decades of torture, infighting and brutality; just what the Solars needed to completely fall to absolute darkness. The Unconquered Sun, ashamed by what his progeny have become and angry at the world they had abused, steals all of his might from each of his Chosen and takes his leave of all of Creation.

It is now the year 2007, and by all magical accounts the world should have ended years ago.

The Antideluvians have risen from their ancient slumber, but rather then destroy the world in a sun-blotted out slugfest between eldritch evils, they have decided to bide their time and play the eternal Jyhad. The Sects fell a few years ago but the Masquerade has remained intact. Alliances are now clearly along Clan lines and war is brewing.

The Garou find the war effort draining and in their time of need have found unlikely alliances amongst the Fera. Word among the Changing Breeds is that the Gauntlet will be falling soon and members of all the different breeds have come to discuss what they will do in the aftermath. The Wyrm will most likely make a move to attack and all of them will be needed. Luckily, word is that Luna has awoken from some strange slumber and has begun granting special mortals mighty powers akin to that of the Changing Breeds.

The Awakened are the most clued in to what is about to happen next. The Technocracy and the Traditions have been watching the Avatar Storms since they broke out and have noticed that as they begin to die down what's being left of the Gauntlet is significantly weaker. As it becomes safer and safer to make passage between the two worlds, both Technocrats and Traditionalists find their masters towers and Horizon-Worlds in flames. The Fair Folk from the deepest Wyld are on the march all over the Umbra.

And then suddenly it hit. A Solar eclipse followed by a Lunar eclipse followed by a complete alignment of the planets. The avatar storms die for good, the Fifth Great Maelstrom completely putters out, and the Exalted begin to return.

Why you ask?

The Unconquered Sun has returned. And with him, old enemies.

In Japan the courts of the Kuie-Jin are shocked as the curse begins to lift. Legends speak of the Wan Xian, immortal chi-users that were born into their power, blessed by the elements rather then cursed by karmic debt and born from the grave. These legendary beings begin to make themselves known among the Courts, and they begin channeling their elemental power into claiming the world.

In the darkest spots on Earth where death has festered and so many tears have dropped over lost lives, Shadowlands begin to bleed out where the Gauntlet begins to crack. And from them, from terrible places like Auschwitz or Ground Zero, the Abyssal Exalted begin to crawl out of the darkness.

Iteration X has completely succeeded from the Technocratic Union. They say Autochthonia has better uses for them.

And into this all is thrust your characters, young people who awaken one day as Solars, burning bright lanterns of glory in the World of Darkness. And little do they know how involved they were in how the world got this way. But all will be revealed, in time. If they survive that long it is ...

Luna's Perspective[edit]

Before there was a World of Darkness ...

There was a time of Savage Adventure.

God-Kings betrayed the hearts of their people. Madness and Corruption rose from the pits of Hell to the throne of Creation. The Unconquered Sun and his Chosen could fight no more, they had already destroyed each other in their pointless bickering.

The Primordials had won without raising a finger. As Malfeas ended the Games of Divinity, we all knew it was the End of an Age. As the Maiden of Weaving rewrote Time and Correspondence, separating Spirit from Matter and Entropy from Primal Energy, the world we would find ourselves in was forever changed.

Gaia, my beloved, already having sacrificed her personality on an altar of virtue, became divided in two, helpless against the machinations of the Weaver and her might. My soul bleeds at the wound of her loss. But it is the sins I have performed since then, the Rage I allowed to pour out of me and into my children, that keeps me awake at night. Sol Invictus will never forgive me what I have done. His return is indeed a bad omen; for myself and the pretender Sun.

As I set on the world, I look once more at my newfound Chosen and those he has brought around himself to guide him. Already, his mate and him have found each other, the inertia of their bond tying all manner of hero and warrior to their cause. Like a snowball of destiny they will travel, righting wrongs and discovering secrets.

Before the World of Darkness ...

There was an Age of Savage Adventure ...

After the World of Darkness ...



Even I do not know. It is for them to decide ...

As said here....though we should probably keep in mind that Luna is chaotic, tricksy, and (very likely) insane -- sort of the definition of an unreliable narrator.

Bits and Pieces[edit]

The Sidereals acted differently after the Great Prophecy. They tried to bring about the Prophecy of Gold ... and ended up fulfilling the Prophecy of Darkness.

Fast forward seven Ages of Man or so, and you have the modern day nights, a week into Gehenna proper. And the Exalted return ...

The only five Solars in Creation ... just now returned. The Lunars, the five of them (Cat, Bear, Snake, Coyote and Wolf) are the ultimate evolution of their type of Fera (the Mokole inherit the Dragon King mnesis). Dragon Blooded are the Wan Xian, the purified, uncursed Kuei-Jin.

Malfeas is the Wyrm -- and the monotheistic god of Vampire. The Ebon Dragon married the Scarlet Empress (who was a Chinese mythical ruler in my alternate timeline) and became the Omphalos, the Yin-Yang. The Five Maidens were "rebuilt" by She Who Lives In Her Name as The Weaver. Sol Invictus just escaped millenia of imprisonment ... only now he's called Lucifer.


The Fallen are those spirits who sided with the Incarna after the Primordials were freed. Turnabout is fair play for all those Forbidden Gods (who now number as the highest among Banes; ie, the new power).

Somehow, Luna wriggled free of the consequences. I suppose by helping overthrow the Titans, she was fulfilling her purpose as the Goddess of Chaos. That new sun though, Helios/Katanka-Sonnak .... he's a douche.

As laid out here by the ST.

The End of an Age[edit]

Arrayed against the Solar Deliberative were three massive armies. The Balorian Crusade, led by Prince Balor, stalked all the greatest and most terrifying Raksha warriors ever to be united, The Deathlords, made up of corrupted Solars and their Lunar mates who took Necromancy to the next level and sold their names to the Neverborn for ultimate power to destroy. The last was the Yama Kings, the mightiest Akuma to ever surrender their wills, a full complement of 50 dark beings.

If the Deliberative hadn't nearly destroyed itself with infighting since the discovery of the Great Curse at the drawing of the Great Prophecy, perhaps these rebels could have been contained. But the Hierophant's Inquisition was too much. Everyone was tainted, and so everyone was the enemy. The unfair war pushed dozens of young Chosen into the eager arms of the the Yozi and the Neverborn, and even many Lunars into the madness of the Wyld.

It was the End of an Age.

The continent cracked, and the Yama Kings unleashed their masters at long last.

The Yozi returned, and the world was the be remade.

At first, Sol did as his old masters commanded, though he was greatly reprimanded. His child was given the position of Sun, and Sol became simply "The Lightbringer", the most powerful and avenging angel of the new Celestial Order. Luna was not punished, for unpredictably testing boundaries was her purpose.

On the other hand, The Maidens had defiled themselves twice. They had needed Autocthon to take some of their essence to make Asna Firstborn, the Pattern Spider Queen. Afterwards, they had pooled their might to create "Little Sister", Ananasa, the Maiden of Oversight. When She Who Lives In Her Name saw the blasphemy the Fates had done, she sought to "repair" them.

She made a mistake though. She thought Asna Firstborn was the whole of their sacrificed power, and so remade the Five Maidens and the Pattern Spider Queen into one being; The Maiden of Weaving.

This left Ananasa out in the cold. She awaits there today, in Malfeas. She is the key to restoring the Five Maidens, the missing part.

The Weaver on the other hand is so much more, and yet so much less, than the Maidens ever were.

--As described here

oWoD/Exalted Connections[edit]

The Unconquered Sun is the highest of the spirits, created by the True Maker(s) or the world to watch over it all, who favors humans and starts a rebellion. In Exalted, this rebellion succeeds, and we get thousands of years of Solar rule before the Dragon Blooded repeat the process. In the World of Darkness such a figure would have been called Lucifer (The Lightbringer) and obviously his rebellion failed and his followers were cast into Hell.

The idea of "Incarna" as the supreme deities comes from the WoD's spirit world. Likewise, Pattern Spiders & the Loom of Fate.

The Wyld and Luna are just the same in Werewolf as they are in Exalted. The Underworld is exactly the same, too. Look at what it says in the prehistory section of Wraith, and that's Exalted's underworld.

Autocthon is in Mage too, floating in (properly enough) The Void of space.

Fair Folk exist without human hosts in Exalted, but obviously have the Commoner/Noble divide they have in Changeling. Likewise, they enter Bedlam or can calcify.

ALSO, big one, Mokole and Dragon Kings share Mnesis. Supposedly, all the way back to the beginning, as far back as "The Wonderwork of the Wyrm" when the Wyrm rewrote all of reality.

The makeup of Primordials is seemingly (to me) based on the makeup of The Wyrm. One central entity, three massive portions of them at the top (The Eater of Souls, the Defiler Wyrm and the Beast of War), and many lesser Banes down to the lowliest. All are The Wyrm, but they are only portions. Interesting to note that the Weaver is alone among all great spirit-kind as not being built in this pattern.

The Ebon Dragon and the Scarlet "Queen" are married and personify the complementary opposition of Yin and Yang. Somehow, the personification of Death and Darkness marrying the greatest of the elemental superkings who rule ancient China changed the whole way the Wan Xian are created, and now they take their Second Breath only after they have died and suffer a karmic imbalance. Years of evil have taught them to steal chi, and have cursed them greatly.

The Ebon Dragon is different from the Wyrm. He exists in the setting already, but with very different themes. The Dragon is about Yin, and with the Queen represents complementary opposition. This seems like a great re-invention of the Dragon's themes; he was always the Antagonist ... marrying the ultimate protagonist seems to have made him complete. Now he's both sides of the coin. And, he's got a fetich, which he seemed to have always lacked. and she defines him by opposition, which he always was. Healthy, happy Primordial.

The Balance Wyrm, I think, was the Holy Tyrant, the Empyreal Chaos. His being "trapped" and "driven mad" is what made him The Wyrm. That makes The Wyrm Malfeas, though maybe a bit re-invented. Incidently, I think Malfeas is God. Like, the God, the guy who curses Caine, the guy who sentences the Fallen to the Abyss, all that shit. Cause if he became Rex Mundi again, he'd call down some Old Testament wrath, and make big overtures about how he was the best and most fair ruler ever. And the only thing in the universe worth worship ("hold no other god before me"). Also explains his hate on for Gaia.

--As discussed here & here.