In previous posts we’ve talked about the themes of Crucible, and begun introducing the game’s playable species. Today we want to provide a glimpse into the world of Crucible, and the great forces that shaped its creation and inhabitants.
Crucible was created by the Primes as a vessel for bringing sentient beings to Enlightenment. The Elemental Primes – Fire, Air, Water and Earth – were intended to build the world, and the Fundamental Primes – Fate and Flux – to guide it. Flux would bring change to allow the surprising and impossible to occur, while Fate directed the results toward the greater purpose of creation.
Early on, each of the Elemental Primes adopted a species as their own: Fire, the passionate Drake; Air, the innovative Skirr; Water, the changeable Iakshai; and Earth, the craft-born Kalatur. Later, for reasons known only to itself, Fate abdicated its guiding role and adopted Humans. With the balance of Crucible at stake, Flux also entered the world and shaped the Akrasi from trees.
As each species reached toward Enlightenment, they shed their imperfections: their selfishness, greed and cruelty. But Crucible, without the Fundaments overseeing it, was a closed spiritual system and the effluent had nowhere to go. Over the aeons it has accumulated into a seventh Prime: Dross.
Dross seeps in at the edges, seeking to steal back the souls it was stripped from. It is a part of everything and, as individuals evolve, they must confront the fact that every step towards ascension adds more of the worst of themselves to the world. Alternately, they can embrace it and become a vile thing, enslaved by harmful desires.
The Crucible is a hemispherical bowl of enormous size, with the known lands occupying the inside surface. The upward curve of the horizon is subtle and obscured by distance, turning faraway geographical features into mere textures behind the clouds. Suspended above Crucible is the Lumen. By day it casts the lands in golden light; by night it dims to a silvery glow.
In the sprawling metropolis of Lihuri Almat, the first city, communities of all species live in the presence of the Vault. This great pyramid hovers above the very centre of the world, turning slowly, with the ancient glyphs on its faces shifting in inscrutable patterns.
Arrayed around Lihuri Almat are smaller cities and towns, including the fertile delta city of Lagniappe, Screetown on the edge of the Parch, and the Perfumed Cities. Spurward is the Salt Road ocean and its many islands and archipelagos. Numerous lands spread beyond the central continent, and at the very edge of the world great ice mountains line Crucible’s rim.
Crucible has been shaped over aeons by the Enlightened: god-like heroes, mighty rulers both benevolent and tyrannical, malevolent entities stripped of compassion. In the current era these powerful beings usually work from behind the nations and organisations they have built, or secret themselves away in isolated strongholds.
Most sentient beings have dismissed them as legends, and go about their lives without challenging the status quo. Some discover the capacity for Enlightenment within themselves, and realise that they too can change the world.