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WarderDragon's Glossary of Roleplaying Terminology [Updated Oct. 5th, 2009]

Discussion in 'The Black Library [Archives]' started by WarderDragon, Mar 14, 2010.

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  1. WarderDragon

    WarderDragon Babbling Loonie
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    WarderDragon's Glossary of Roleplaying Terminology - (A - G)

    Abbey: A religious institution, often the living space of a monastic order. Abbeys are often known for their vineyards, which produce fine wines and brews; often the source of income for these monks and allows them to devote much of their time to study and theological pursuits. The most famous abbey in Britannia is Empathy Abbey, which houses the Candle of Love.

    Abjurer: A magician specializing in protective enchantments and wards.

    Acropolis: A Greek word, literally meaning city on the edge. Acropolises were famous throughout the ancient Mediterannean, usually the site of powerful and imposing temples. The idea was that if you constructed your temples on high ground, you could be closer to your God(s). The most famous examples in ancient history include the Acropolis of Athens (where the Parthenon rested), and the Temple Mount (which rested the Temple of Jerusalem). The most famous example in Ultima Online is Luna, which is based on Greco-Roman themes.

    Akalabeth: The name belonging to the Empire that preceded the Kingdom of Britannia and Dawn. While little is actually known about the nation and its people, some have speculated that Akalabeth may have been Late Roman or Early Germanic (Carolingian) in culture, architecture, and worldview. This stems from the development of Britannia out of the earlier Akalabethan state. What is known is that Akalabeth was ruled by a line of hereditary sorcerer-monarchs, which ended with the assassination of King Wolfgang.

    Mondain the Sorcerer would have been the second-in-line for the throne, had he not been responsible for the death of his father and the theft of the Sun Gem. As a result, the Empire was divided up between Wolfgangs first son, the Lost Prince, and the Champion of White Light, Lord Cantabrigian British. Akalabeth would collapse almost entirely during the First War of Darkness, but it would eventually recover and be named Britannia in Lord Cantabrigian's honor.

    Alchemists: Scholars that focus on mixing various herbs and substances together to produce some desired effect; often in the form of a powerful potion or elixer. A common goal amongst scholarly alchemists is seeking the formula to transmute more common metals (such as Valorite) into Mithril, a substance not seen since the Golden Age.

    Ambrosia: An island north east of Dagger Island, far beyond the recorded map. It is said that Ambrosia was struck by a meteorite, leaving the land blackened and lifeless.

    Apotheosis: Refers to the exaltation of the subject to divine level; a form of hero worship. An example within Britannia would be the rising Imperial Cult, where the devotees of Virtue have elevated Lord British to a deific status.

    Arcanist: A magician that deals in arcane magic. Arcanist is the title given to elven magicians, although Mages and Necromancers can also be considered Arcanists.

    Armageddon: A powerful incantation that, when used with the right quantity of blackrock, can produce devastating and widespread effects. The nature of the spell is largely unknown, but it was used to destroy almost all life on Sosaria many centuries ago. Another casting of the spell caused a wrinkle in time, transporting a future Haven to the location of the modern village.

    Avalon: Also known as the City of Destiny and the Village of Dreams, Avalon is a northern village built on a peninsula once inhabited by Nordic Amazons. Although Britannia has claimed Avalon as within its mandate, The Kingdom of Dawn has sworn to protect Avalon's independance in the event of a foreign invasion.

    Baron/Baroness: The lowest major rank of the landowning nobility within Britannia. Barons and Baronesses are often wealthy landowners, but their holdings are usually small and confined to a sizable estate. Its not uncommon for their to be several barons inhabiting the same city. The land of a baron is called a Barony or Baronship.

    Baronet: A baronet (traditional abbreviation Bart, modern abbreviation Bt) or the rare female equivalent, a baronetess (abbreviation Btss), is the holder of a hereditary title awarded by the British Crown known as a baronetcy. The current practice of awarding baronetcies was originally introduced in England and Ireland by James I of England in 1611 in order to raise funds.

    Baronetcies have four European equivalents from a ranking perspective: the Italian title of nobility Nobile, the Austrian and South German title of Edler von, extinct old-Polish panek ("lordling") and the Hungarian - (úr - földesúr) baronet is a title of nobility (peerage) known also as the hereditary territorial and manorial feudal lord of "von" ... (Example: Johanus Turcsányi von Turcsány), and Ritter and the Dutch Erfridder, may be held to be similar. There were originally three hereditary knighthoods in Ireland, of which two remain today.

    Blackrock: A ebon-hued form of granite, with a slick obsidiant appearance. Blackrock actually posesses latent ethereal power, and can be used as a reagent. The most common (and feared) use for this reagent is the spell Armageddon, an invocation capable of destroying vast swaths of land. Blackrock also seems to absorb any spell cast upon it. With enough blackrock in an area, you could essentially prevent a mage from casting magic (as seen following the destruction of the Blackrock Detector in Moonglow).

    Blackrock also posesses numerous side effects for those who are exposed to it. Blackrock infection causes people to slowly loose their mind, becoming rabid and prone to fits of rage. Blackrock can also induce memory loss, and those who are exposed to it for long periods often here strange voices.

    Blackrock Infection: A condition brought on by long exposure to, and experimentation with, the Blackrock reagent. Those who experience blackrock infection are said to have darker colored blood, begin loosing their memory, loose their desire for food, and are prone to fits or rage and insanity.

    Brigand: A term sometimes associated with player-killers and red groups. A brigand is usually a highwayman or thug who acts outside the authority of the law, and steals the belongings of innocent citizens.

    Britannia: The name that belongs to Lord British’s Realm; once known as Akalabeth and the Land of Lost Kings. The original kingdom was located within Felucca, but that dominion was abandoned during the Second War of Darkness. “New Britannia” was constructed upon the world of Trammel, and is currently ruled by the Royal Britannian Council.

    Britannian: An inhabitant of the Kingdom of Britannia. Britannian’s are based on various ethnicities and kingdoms of medieval and renaissance Europe; although the Gypsies correspond to the Roma, and Nujel’m may correspond to the people of Arabia and Al’Andalus.

    Chaos: The philosophy advocated by Lord Blackthorne. The concept is that humankind is basically good, and that government is an evil oppressor of the people. Chaos is not evil, but instead advocates a limited government and lassiez-faire capitalism. The different degrees of Chaos depend on the philosopher; ranging from absolute anarchy to some form of democratic rule being the ideal state of humankind.

    Church: A house of worship and/or prayer for certain religious orders. Churches are synonomous with temples.

    Chivalry: The maintenance of a personal code of honor, and devotion to the Light. Chivalry is the religion practiced by the people of Luna, which emphasizes devotion to women, charity to the poor, and honor in every action.

    Some have questioned whether the Paladins of Trinsic embraced Chivalry. They have in recent years, but the Paladins of Trinsic are much more like Hospitalliers; Healer-Knights with some latent mystical skills.

    Conjurer: A magician specializing in summoning magic.

    Constitutional Monarchy: A hereditary kingdom that possesses a constitution, protecting the individual and human rights of its citizenship from encroachment by the monarchy. This form of governance often maintains its own parliament or legislative body that can override the power of the King or Queen, and the monarch is subject to the same laws that guide its people.

    Council of Mages: A conclave of wizards and enchanters, originally hailing from Verity Isle. Over time, they came to the conclusion that Lord British was incapable of defeating Minax and freeing the kingdom from the clutches of evil; therefore, they felt that he was unfit to wear the Akalabethan Crown. The perceived abandonment of the Old World only served to fan the flames of uprising. In response, the kingdom violently suppressed the mutiny, but this only managed to increase their supporters both within Moonglow and abroad. They moved their base of operations to Magincia, where they merged with the Magincian Ruling Council.

    Count: A count is a nobleman in European countries; his wife is a countess. The word count came into English from the French comte, itself from Latin comes—in its accusative comitem—meaning "companion", and later "companion of the emperor, delegate of the emperor". The British equivalent is an earl (whose wife is also a "countess", for lack of an Anglo-Saxon term). Alternative names for the "Count" rank in the nobility structure are used in other countries, such as Hakushaku during the Japanese Imperial era.

    Daemon: See demon.

    Daimyo: Daimyo (大名?) ( daimyō (help·info)) is a generic term referring to the powerful territorial lords in premodern Japan who ruled most of the country from their vast, hereditary land holdings. In the term, "dai" (大) literally means "large", and "myō" stands for myōden (名田), meaning private land.[1]

    They were the most powerful feudal rulers from the 10th century to the early 19th century in Japan following the Shogun.

    From the shugo of the Muromachi period through the Sengoku to the daimyo of the Edo period, the rank had a long and varied history.

    The term "daimyo" is also sometimes used to refer to the leading figures of such clans, also called "lord". It was usually, though not exclusively, from these warlords that a shogun arose or a regent was chosen.

    Dawn (Nation): The Kingdom of Dawn is a northern nation, surrounding the Ring of Steel (Wrong) Mountains in the Old World. It is fiercely independent, ruled by Grand Duchess Wildstar and the Royal Council (who act as stewards until Prince Riain comes of age). Dawn is known to be an exporter of plant goods, such as poison-resistant flowers and red wax.

    Dawn (Person): Her Majesty, The Glorious Queen Dawn of Britannia. Dawn is the third reigning monarch of the Kingdom of Britannia, following Lord Cantabrigian the Virtuous and Lord Casca the Tyrant.

    Demon: A powerful, infernalistic being native to the abyss. Their origins are largely unknown, but they are almost always evil and seek to subjugate or destroy good.

    Devil: Sometimes a fallen ethereal warrior, often in the service of the Enemy.

    Diviners: Magincians specializing in the gifts of prophecy and divination. They are not capable of seeing the future, but Diviners can often make predictions using tarot cards and various divination tools. It is said that Mistresses of the Dark Tower often consulted diviners before making major decisions.

    Druidism: A form of nature magic, originally developed by the Elves and Meer; but eventually adopted by the people of Yew. Druids follow a philosophy of strict justice.

    Duke/Duchess: A powerful landowning noble, often just below the rank of King. Grand Dukes and Duchesses are often of similar status and privilege as a King or Queen, although Duchies are often smaller and less influential than Kingdoms.

    Earl: Earl was the Anglo-Saxon form and jarl the Scandinavian form of a title meaning "chieftain" and referring especially to chieftains set to rule a territory in a king's stead. In Scandinavia, it became obsolete in the Middle Ages and was replaced with duke (hertig/hertug); in later medieval Britain, it became the equivalent of the continental count (in England in the earlier period, it was more akin to duke, while in Scotland it assimilated the concept of mormaer).

    Elizabethan: A dialect of English, spoken with most frequency during the Elizabethan Era of England. Examples of Elizabethan include using your “thee’s” and “thou arts.” Often, roleplayers use elements of the Elizabethan tongue to add flair to their character; often considered to be an accent belonging to some of the older cities of Sosaria. Elizabethan is by no means required to roleplay. In fact, modern English is considered to be the “Common Tongue” or “Trade Language” of Britannia.

    Empire: A large nation, ruled by an Emperor or Empress. Empires are distinct from Kingdoms, in that Empires are always large and possess more than one ethnicity and language group.

    Emperor: An emperor (from the Latin "imperator") is a (male) monarch, usually the sovereign ruler of an empire or another type of imperial realm. Empress is the female equivalent. As a title, "empress" may indicate the wife of an emperor (empress consort) or a woman who rules in her own right (empress regnant). Emperors and empresses are generally recognized to be above kings and queens in honour and rank.

    Emote: An expression of action or emotion, usually contained within asterisks. Examples might include: “*hugs*”, “*laughs*”, “*WildStar thumps Nicholas over the head*.”

    Enchanter: A magician that deals primarily in charms, enhancements, and illusions.

    Enemy, The: A generic term used to describe the evils of the land. They include Minax, Exodus, the Shadowlords, the Guardian, and so fourth.

    Entropic Chant, The: The Entropic Chant is the hymn sung during the Black Mass held annually at the Dark Tower. It is said that Adaeth the Torn travelled from our world to another, and brought back this mystical chant along with the Cult of the Ebon Skull.

    Entropy: The concept of absolute, devouring nothingness. Although entropy is often seen as yet another interstellar phenomenon by philosophers of the Lycaeum, Entropy and Oblivion has taken on almost pseudo-religious overtones by adhereants of the Path of Darkness (philosophers and hierophants of the Dark Tower).

    Faerunian Polytheism: Save for the Virtues and the Order of Truth, the Ultima Series has largely lacked any notion of religious groups, an afterlife, and so fourth. There are certainly existant themes - a clear connection between the Avatar, the Eight Virtues, and the Eightfold Path of Buddhism - but otherwise, the world is largely absent of this characteristic.

    In an attempt to fill in the gaps, players have adopted various systems and philosophies; often different from character to character. Some groups hold the notion of the Light or the High God. Some groups view Lord British as an ascended figure (Apotheosis), and have formed an imperial cult around him. Others have imported various pantheons from Mediterranean and Nordic History, Lord of the Rings, Dragonlance, and the Forgotten Realms (especially the Drow, who worship Lloth). Faerunian Polytheism is a catch-all term for the latter beliefs, under the belief that such deities are cross-overs from Aber-Toril. Any of the above, including Faerunian Polytheism, is completely acceptable within roleplaying circles; although whether or not your particular religion is true should be left rather ambiguous. Although your characters can debate, you shouldn't expect everyone to acknowledge Lloth or Chanteua simply because you've determined that to be your characters object of worship.

    Felucca: Also known as “the Old World”, “the Accursed Realm”, and “the Dark Lands.” This was the original world inhabited by the Sosarians, and the original location of the Kingdoms of Akalabeth and Britannia. It began to slowly grow more corrupted by the influence of Minax and the Cult of the Shadowlords, which led Lord British and his court to use an immensely powerful magical spell that made an exact copy of Sosaria upon another world. The Old World, now abandoned by the Royal Court, was given the name “Felucca.” Felucca has become divided amongst various loyalist factions, and independent kingdoms and factions each vying for absolute control over the continent.

    Game of Houses: Known also as Daes Daemar in the Old Akalabethan Tounge; the Game of Houses is an artform practiced by the upper crust of society. Its the art of political manipulation, veiled threats, and clever insults that nobles use against one another in daily courtly life. Although it might seem benign to the casual observer, every polite gesture and false curtsey is an attempt to curry favor and establish a pecking order amongst the landowning peerage.

    Globe of Sosaria: An interesting house add-on, made available with the Shadow Decorations Pack. The globe is a massive glass orb, the entirety of Sosaria contained within its sights. Some players have gone so far as to suggest that these Globes, within character, actually act as some sort of Palantiri Stone; allowing them to use the mystical energies to spy on various locations from afar.

    Greco-Egyptian: The overarching theme of Malas, combining both Greco-Roman and Egyptian themes. Examples include the City of Luna (named for the Greek Goddess of the Moon), the Acropolis-theme of Luna, Horus the Blind Guardian (part of the old paladin starting quest), the Labyrinith, the Minotaur, the Forgotten Pyramid, the Sphinx, and the embalming practices of Umbra.

    Greco-Roman: A term referring to anything based-off of, or posessing similarities to, Greco-Roman (or Hellenistic) society, culture, philosophy, architecture, theology, or warfare. In Ultima Online, the most famous examples of Greco-Roman concepts transplanted onto Sosaria is Malas. The City of Luna, named for the Greco-Roman Goddess of the Moon; clearly possesses similarities to Greco-Roman Architecture (an Acropolis with large corinthian pillars). Other examples include the Labyrinith.
  2. WarderDragon

    WarderDragon Babbling Loonie
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    WarderDragon's Glossary of Roleplaying Terminology - (H - N)

    Hamlet: A small village, usually only consisting of a few hovels and farmhouses. Hamlets usually grow around small farming villages or manors. They are often not significant enough to be included on official maps by cartographers.

    Herald: An in-character name for Stratics Reporters.

    Hero cult: A religious order that chooses to elevate a certain mortal figure - sometimes its founder or a person of special significance - to the level of deity; a form of Apotheosis. This was common in ancient Greece and Rome, where such individuals as Heracles and Julius Caesar were elevated to the status of god posthumously. An example in modern fantasy would be Sigmar Heldenhammer in Warhammer; the Emperor who disappeared and was proclaimed a god by his people. In Ultima Online, some have taken to worshipping the Lost King, Lord British, as some sort of immortal god-like figure.

    High God: The concept of the High God is one thats shared by many faiths and religious orders throughout the length and width of Sosaria. To some, the High God is the One True God, an omnipresent and omnipotent creator of the Universe. To this group, the materials of Light and Dark sprung from his mind ex nihilo, and he used it to shape all life and matter. To others, the High God is synonymous with the Light itself; and therefore believe in a dualistic system where both Light and Dark struggle for eternity. Whether they shall forever struggle, or whether one side will win out in the end, is largely up to interpretation.

    Other groups believe that this High God (known as Ao) is the father of many lesser gods, and has since left this pantheon in control of history; setting up a sort of polytheism. To nature-bound creatures, the High God is the universe and the lifeforce running through everything. To the Zenti, it is the goal to escape the Wheel of Time and suffering; merging back with the High God.

    As can be imagined, this leaves much to be argued by philosophers and theologians of the Lycaeum.

    Ilshenar: A world, completely separated from Sosaria. Some believe that Ilshenar is actually the twisted representation of ancient Sosaria, considering that many historical locations and lost peoples discovered within the lands were thought to have once been extinct. It is clear, based on the folklore and legends of the Gypsy People, that their kind originated from Ilshenar and somehow managed to be transplanted to Sosaria (probably following the Great Cataclysm). Others believe that Ilshenar might be the displaced Kingdom of the White Dragon, also known as “Serpents Isle.”

    Ilshenar was named after Ilshen, a historical figure with dramatic similarities to Lord British, who founded Montor and established an identicle set of Virtues (Chaos being also established amongst them). This further leaves credit to the Virtue Religionists, who see the Virtues as a divinely-inspired plan set in the minds of the great heros in an attempt by the Divine to establish a utopian society on Sosaria.

    Inquisitor: Often belonging to a monastic religious institution, Inquisitors act as the police-force of these groups in their attempts to root our heresy and evil amongst the common folk and royal peerage alike. These groups have varying levels of authority, and often act outside the domain of Britannian Law. Another name for Inquisitor is Witch Hunter.

    King: A king is a head of state, who may or may not, depending on the style of government of a nation, exercise monarchal powers over a nation, usually called a kingdom or a realm. A king is the second highest sovereign title, only looking up to an emperor. The female equivalent of king is queen; although the term "queen" may refer to one ruling as a monarch in her own right, a queen regnant, or to the wife of a king, a queen consort. A queen who becomes the reigning monarch because the king has died, has become debilitated, or is a minor, is known as a queen regent. The husband of a queen regnant is sometimes styled the king consort but is more commonly styled the prince consort. A king or queen may wear a crown or carry other regalia (symbols of office).

    Kingdom: A large country, usually composed of several interdependent cities and towns ruled over by a hereditary monarch or “King.” A kingdom is distinguished form an empire, in that kingdoms usually share one defining culture and one major ethnic group. Sometimes kingdoms exist within empires, whereas the king retains the ability to govern domestic policy; but must pay tribute to the emperor or empress. Such examples include the Roman Empire, and the later Holy Roman Empire.

    Knight: A knight was a "gentleman soldier"[1] or member of the warrior class of the Middle Ages in Europe. In other Indo-European languages, cognates of cavalier or rider are more prevalent (viz French chevalier and German Ritter), suggesting a connection to the knight's mode of transport.

    The Franco-British legend of King Arthur was popularised throughout Europe in the Middle Ages by Geoffrey of Monmouth in his Historia Regum Britanniae ("History of the Kings of Britain"), written in the 1130s. Sir Thomas Malory's Le Morte d'Arthur ("The Death of Arthur"), written in 1485, was important in defining the ideal of chivalry which is essential to the modern concept of the knight as an elite warrior sworn to uphold the values of faith, loyalty, courage, and honour. During the Renaissance, the genre of chivalric romance became popular in literature, growing ever more idealistic and eventually giving rise to a new form of realism in literature popularised by Miguel de Cervantes' Don Quixote. This novel explored the ideals of knighthood and their incongruity with the reality of Cervantes' world. In the Late Medieval Period, new methods of warfare began to render classical knights in armor obsolete, but the titles remained in many nations.

    Some orders of knighthood, such as the Knights Templar, have themselves become the stuff of legend; others have disappeared into obscurity. Today, a number of orders of knighthood continue to exist in several countries, such as the English Order of the Garter, the Swedish Royal Order of the Seraphim, and the Royal Norwegian Order of St. Olav. Each of these orders has its own criteria for eligibility, but knighthood is generally granted by a head of state to selected persons to recognise some meritorious achievement.

    Knight Bachelor: The rank of Knight Bachelor is a part of the British honours system. It is the rank of a man who has been knighted by the monarch but not as a member of one of the organised Orders of Chivalry. Knights Bachelor are the most ancient sort of British knight (the rank existed during the reign of King Henry III (1 October 1207 – 16 November 1272)), but Knights Bachelor rank below knights of the various orders. There is no female counterpart; women deserving an honour of this rank are appointed Dame Commanders of the Order of the British Empire (DBE) instead.

    Knight Banneret: A Knight banneret, sometimes known simply as banneret, was a knight ("a commoner of rank")[1] who led a company of troops during time of war under his own banner (which was square-shaped, in contrast to the tapering standard or the pennon flown by the lower-ranking knights) and were eligible to bear supporters in English heraldry.

    The military rank of a knight banneret was higher than a knight bachelor (who fought under another's banner), but lower than an earl or duke; the word derives from the French banneret, from bannire, banner, elliptical for seigneur - or chevalier banneret, Medieval Latin banneretus.

    Under English custom the rank of knight banneret could only be conferred by the sovereign on the field of battle. There were some technical exceptions to this; when his standard was on the field of battle he could be regarded as being present though he was not. His proxy could be regarded as a sufficient substitution for his presence.

    Labyrinith: The legendary maze constructed by Daedalus for King Minos of Crete; housed under his magnificent palace at Knossos. It was used to contain the Minotaur; the product of King Minos's failure to sacrifice the Cretian Bull to Posideon. The father of the deep cast an enchantment over the kings wife Pasiphae, who fell madly in love with the bull and desired to copulate with it. This led to the creation of the Minotaur; a half-man, half-bull. In Ultima Online, the Labyrinith is located on the Divide of the Abyss in Malas. Malas, which is based in part on Greco-Egyptian Mythology, continues this theme with the dungeon. It can be infered that, perhaps, the story of King Minos and Pasiphae happened similarly in Luna; leading to the creation of the Labyrinith to house the Minotaur(s).

    Light, The: The Light is a powerful, omnipresent, and omnipotent life-giving force that has existed for all eternity. The nature of the light is unknown and left to player-interpretation, but the most popular have the Light existing as roughly analogous to “God” or “The Force.” The crusaders of Luna are the most famous devotees to the Light.

    Luna: Literally means light, or sometimes moon. The name comes from Selene, the Goddess-Titaness of the Moon in Greco-Roman Mythology. The City of Luna, which appears to be based in part on such mythology, means The City of Light.

    Magery: The most common form of magic within the realms of Sosaria. Magery is learned through the study of scrolls, mystical texts, and magical words. The majority of mages atleast spend some time learning and perfecting their art from the Lycaeum or within Umbra, but there do exist some wild mages throughout the world.

    Malleus Maleficarum: Latin for the Witches Hammer. It was a book written by two German monks, who sought to prove that Witchcraft does exist and largely stems from feminine weakness against the dark powers. Contrary to modern fiction, the book was largely suppressed by the Catholic Church at the time, who felt that such a text might inspire a witch craze. In Ultima, Malleus Maleficarum is sometimes the name used by Inquisitors and Witchhunters who feel that magic-users practice a form of unholy sorcery and must be disposed of.

    Marquess: A marquess (pronounced /ˈmɑrkwɨs/) or marquis (pronounced /mɑrˈkiː/) (from French "marquis") is a nobleman of hereditary rank in various European monarchies and some of their colonies. The term is also used to render equivalent oriental styles as in imperial China and Japan. In the British peerage it ranks below a duke and above an earl (see Marquesses in the United Kingdom and the Commonwealth). In Europe it is usually equivalent where a cognate title exists. A woman with the rank of marquess, or the wife of a marquess, is a marchioness (in British usage) (pronounced /ˌmɑrʃəˈnɛs/), or a marquise (in Europe, pronounced /mɑrˈkiːz/).

    Mary Sue: An individual who makes their character much more powerful, famous, and noteworthy than is likely; without the story or the roleplaying skills to back it up. Often, this is used as a crutch by newer roleplayers; but often traits can unintentionally be adopted by experienced roleplayers. An example of a Mary Sue would be to suggest that your character is the child of Lord British, and therefore should be the next King; and to top that off, suggest that your actually the pick of the Royal Council. Mary Sues are strongly discouraged. They can be roleplayed well, and by no means should you stifle your creativity should you have some idea that you absolutely feel is right for you; but be prepared to back up your claims with good roleplaying and a sensible storyline. Britannia is inhabited by thousands of players, and not everyone can claim to be Lord British’s heir.

    Metagaming: A term for a roleplayer taking knowledge they wouldn’t normally know, and applying it into the game. An example would be reading about one of the major RPC’s locked away in a dungeon here on Stratics, and then automatically knowing it in roleplay (although your character was never actually there and has no way of knowing). Its ok to find this dungeon, and happen to “stumble” upon these characters; but you should only roleplay your character with the knowledge they would be capable of discovering.

    Monestary: A large abbey, often with its own fortifications and guards.

    Mysticism: A form of magery practiced by the denizens of Tel Mur. There is no major difference between Mysticism and Magery, save their different origins and slightly different effects. A great deal of similarity can be seen between Britannian Sorcery and Gargoyle Magick.

    Necromancer: A magician that focuses on magical incantations and spells related to undeath. Contrary to popular belief, not all necromancers stem from the same school; and in fact, several similar sects have arisen throughout the years. One form stemmed from the five sorcerer clans of pre-Britannian Magincia, who practiced necromancy and infernalistic incanations. Another sect arose, worshipping a strange being known as Lithos the Earth Titan, and claiming that one day they would “open the doors” and allow their cruel elemental master entry into Sosaria. The last major group derived their powers from the Dark Tower, a powerful cult that held power over death. It wasn’t until recently that the necromatics arts became widespread, as the Scholars and Magi were more than eager to share their knowledge of undeath and embalming with the newly arrived Britannians.

    Necropolis: A large city-state or Acropolis, usually housing necromancers, sentient undead beings, and demonic figures. The most famous Necropolises on Baja have been the Delucian Necropolis, Shadowfel, and Scythe.

    Nihilism: The philosophical position that argues existance is without objective meaning, purpose, or intrinsic value. Nihilists generally assert that there is no proof of a higher power, and therefore morality is something created by powerful individuals to keep the common folk in line and bound to proscribed methods of action. Therefore, they do not feel the compulsion to choose good or evil; and only act to satisfy their own views and needs. The most famous nihilistic thinkers come from the Dark Tower; with Cymidei Fier allegedly holding a form of nihilistic thought (although she previously devoted herself to a "Crone of Fates"; therefore her nihilism may merely be a rumor).
  3. WarderDragon

    WarderDragon Babbling Loonie
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    WarderDragon's Glossary of Roleplaying Terminology - (O - Z)

    OES: The abbreviation for the Order of the Ebon Skull.

    Old Britannia: A term used to describe the former domain of Lord British, located within Felucca. Cities of the Old World often are referred to in the same light to distinguish them from their New Britannian counterparts; such as “Old Trinsic”, “Old Moonglow”, “Old Vesper.” Occlo is an exception.

    Old English: Another dialect, much older than Elizabethan. Old English is sometimes used by roleplayers to add personal flair to their character. An example would be: “Ye Olde Towne Cryer.” Old English is often considered more rural, and would be used in locations such as Yew, Skara Brae, and Minoc.

    Old World: Another name for Felucca.

    OOC: Out of Character. These are actions taken by a player that are outside the realm of his or her normal actions, but are taken due to game mechanics. Examples of OOC activities might be leaving character to discuss the Super Bowl, a paladin visiting Umbra to finish a quest, or data that your character wouldn’t normally know (such as how much strength you need to wield a Viking sword). Out of Character chat should be put in parenthesis, unless all roleplayers agree to leave roleplay; or you’ve established yourself as OOC.

    Orc: Sentient, ape-like beings who live in scattered and disorganized clans throughout Sosaria. The first Orcs were created by Mondain, who managed to magically cross-breed canines with humans.

    Order: The philosophy advocated by Lord British. The basic premise of Order, is that society must be structured and held to certain universal patterns; a social contract maintained by the people and enforced by the “Leviathan.” Orders principals stem from a pseudo-religious philosophy known as the Virtues. Order opposes Chaos, in that British believes one must give up absolute freedom (in which only the strongest rule) to gain new freedoms (such as art, peace, and love).

    Order of the Ebon Skull: One of the most influential, and powerful roleplaying guilds on the Atlantic Shard. They were an evil roleplaying society, with their ancient necropolis of Golgatha established at the northern point of Dagger Island. They devised the Entropic Chant and the Black Mass, and their stories have had an impact on the Dark Tower.

    Parliament: A legislative council, often the hallmark of a constitutional monarchy.

    Pigeon: Another name for ICQ/MSN/Skype. In ancient times, trained pigeons could carry mail messages across long distances; much like a primitive postal service. To say I am going to send someone a pigeon, means I am going to send them an instant message.

    Power Gaming: You may have heard the term used in the context of skill gains, where a player “powergames” to gain their skills and abilities as fast as the game mechanics will allow. In the context of roleplaying, “powergaming” means to attribute overpowering abilities to your character to make him more powerful and dominate the roleplayers around you. An example would be to say your character is a powerful demon incapable of being damaged, or claiming that you suddenly take control of another characters mind without the other players permission. Powergaming in this context is strongly frowned upon. Instead, when conflicts occur; be sure to consult the other roleplayer or give them the opportunity to react. Also known as Power Emoting.

    Prince: Prince, from French "Prince" (itself from the Latin root princeps), is a general term for a monarch, for a member of a monarchs' or former monarch's family, and is a hereditary title in some members of Europe's highest nobility. The feminine equivalent is a princess.

    Queen Consort: A queen consort is the wife of a reigning king. A queen consort usually shares her husband's rank and holds the feminine equivalent of the king's monarchical titles. Most of the time, however, queen consorts have no real power.

    Queen Dowager: A queen dowager or dowager queen (compare: princess dowager, dowager princess, or princess mother) is a title or status generally held by the widow of a deceased king. Its full meaning is clear from the two words from which it is composed: queen indicates someone who served as queen consort (i.e., wife of a king), while dowager indicates a widow who holds the title from her deceased husband. (A queen who rules in her own right and not due to marriage to a king is a queen regnant).

    Queen Regnant: A queen regnant (plural "queens regnant") is a qualifying reference to a female monarch (queen) possessing and exercising all of the monarchical powers of a ruler, in contrast to a "queen consort", who is the wife of a male reigning as monarch and who is without any official powers of state.

    Roleplaying: A popular playstyle, in which the player takes up the role of a character that actually lives, works, and breathes within the world of Sosaria during the times of Lord British, Minax, and the Shadowlords. One begins to speak, emote, and act out your characters personality according to such. This allows you to take an active role within the storyline completely outside your normal personality; such as being a villainous swashbuckler, an intelligent mystic, or a pious knight.

    RP: An abbreviation that stands for both “Roleplay” and “Roleplaying.”

    RPC: Role Playing Character.

    RPer: An abbreviation for “Roleplayer.”

    Samurai: Samurai (侍?) is the term for the military nobility of pre-industrial Japan. According to translator William Scott Wilson: "In Chinese, the character 侍 was originally a verb meaning to wait upon or accompany a person in the upper ranks of society, and this is also true of the original term in Japanese, saburau. In both countries the terms were nominalized to mean "those who serve in close attendance to the nobility," the pronunciation in Japanese changing to saburai." According to Wilson, an early reference to the word Samurai appears in the Kokin Wakashū (905-914), the first imperial anthology of poems, completed in the first part of the tenth century.

    By the end of the 12th century, samurai became almost entirely synonymous with bushi (武士), and the word was closely associated with the middle and upper echelons of the warrior class. The samurai followed a set of written rules called the Bushidō. Samurai teachings can still be found today in modern day society with the martial art Kendō, meaning the way of the sword.

    Shardiz: A term for NPC Orcs. Shardiz posess far lower intellegence in comparison to their player-controlled cousins. Some suggest that while the Shardiz were made by Mondain, player-Orcs belong to a spiecies that existed prior to the Age of Darkness.

    Shogun: Shogun (将軍, shōgun?) listen (help·info) ("Commander of the Forces") is a military rank and historical title for Hereditary Commanders in Chief of the Armed Forces of Japan. [1] The modern rank is equivalent to a Generalissimo. As a title, it is the short form of seii taishōgun, the governing individual at various times in the history of Japan, ending when Tokugawa Yoshinobu relinquished the office to the Meiji Emperor in 1867.

    A shogun's office or administration is known in English as a "shogunate". In Japanese it was known as bakufu (幕府?) which literally means "tent office", and originally meant "house of the general", and later also suggested a private government. Bakufu could also mean "tent government" and was the way the government was run under a shogun. The tent symbolized the field commander but also denoted that such an office was meant to be temporary. The shogun's officials were as a collective the bakufu, and were those who carried out the actual duties of administration while the Imperial court retained only nominal authority.

    Skypages: An in-character name for “webpage.” For example, “you can find our guild application on our skypage.”

    Sorcery: Some individuals can draw upon their innate magical spark, controlling an elemental force known as Wild Sorcery. Sorcerers are often not immidiately as powerful as mages, and can be extremely dangerous during their youth as they do not yet know how to control the spark inside. The masculine form of Sorcery is known as Saidin, whereas the feminine form is known as Saidar.

    The majority of wizards possess some level of innate magical abilities to cast their magicks. Those who do not eventually begin to waste away as the lacking mana begins to ebb away at their life force. A famous example would be Ivy Shadowsfare, the former Mistress of the Dark Tower; who experienced ether sickness after casting powerful spells.

    Sosaria: The name of the world in which Ultima Online takes place. True Sosaria would essentially be Felucca, the Feluccian Lost Lands, and any Feluccian versions of the Tokuno and Serpent Isles. Trammel is considered to be an exact replica of Sosaria. Malas and Ilshenar are completely separate worlds.

    Sovereignty: Sovereignty is the quality of having supreme, independent authority over a territory. It can be found in a power to rule and make law that rests on a political fact for which no purely legal explanation can be provided. The concept has been discussed, debated and questioned throughout history, from the time of the Romans through to the present day, although it has changed in its definition, concept, and application throughout, especially during the Age of Enlightenment. The current notion of state sovereignty were laid down in the Treaty of Westphalia (1648), which, in relation to states, codified the basic principles of territorial integrity, border inviolability, and supremacy of the state (rather than the Church). A sovereign is a supreme lawmaking authority.

    Temple: A house of worship and/or sacrifice by religious orders. Ancient temples were often built atop large hills or mountains (known as Acropolises) to be closer to the Heavens.

    Tokuno: Also known as “the Land of Feudal Lords.” Tokuno exists far to the west of the Britannian mainland, inhabited by a strange and mystical culture that values personal honor and sacrifice above all else. They are currently ruled over by a hidden empress, who’s location is unknown.

    Town Crier: The in-character term for the Britannian News Network and UOHerald. In fact, “Town Cryer” was the original name used by the Britannian News Network following the launch of Ultima Online.

    Trammel: Also known as “the New World”, “the Blessed Realm”, and “Lord British’s Realm.” Trammel is the name of the world created, or rather copied, by Lord British and a powerful group of mages through use of the Sacred Codex. The intention was to create a New Britannia, one safe from the wickedness of Minax. The cities and villages of Trammel are largely under the dominion of the Kingdom of Britannia.

    Umbra: Literally means darkness, and refers to the dark side of the moon. The City of Umbra literally means the City of Darkness.

    Village: A small community, not quite a city but significantly larger than a hamlet. Villages often begin as hamlets, but eventually grow and begin to collect their own shops and commerce, often as the result of an influx of people due to new opportunities available in the area. One of the largest villages is Minoc. Other historical examples include Ravenshire, Shadowlight, and so fourth.

    Virtue: The pseudo-religious philosophy advocated by Lord British. Although Virtue is not technically a religious per se (and therefore can be combined with most good aligned religious systems), Virtue has gradually taken some of its own religious overtones over the years. The most prominent is the prominent (almost Hero Worship) of Lord British, the prophecy of a Virtuous Savior known as the Avatar, and the prophecy of the Once and Future King.

    Viscount: A viscount (pronounced /ˈvaɪkaʊnt/ vye-count) is a member of the European nobility whose comital title ranks usually, as in the British peerage, above a baron, below an earl (in Britain) or a count (the earl's continental equivalent).

    Witch: A female spellcaster. Used in some circles as a derogatory term to described female spellcasters who pratice dangerous and forbidden magic. Amongst other circles, it's seen in a more positive light.

    Witch Hunter: See Inquisitor.

    Wizardry: The name for the most common form of magic in Britannia, also known as Magery. See magery.
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