The Aspect/Magic Explanation:
Ok this may get a bit confusing, but it is the only time I am gonna explain this so pay attention and remember as there are possible plot points and spoilers, as well as info that will make everyone’s lives easier if you understand it. So here we go people!
Firstly what are Aspects? Well Aspects are everything! Let me break this down: what most would see as elements, forces of nature, or concepts are all governed and controlled by Aspects. Usually Aspects are referred to by the main element they encompass, but they are much more than that. Every Aspect is formed and defined by at least one element yes, but the higher Aspects: primary, secondary, and tertiary, all have traits. Traits are concepts, ideas, or conditions that are linked to an Aspect, basically they are extras to go alongside the element that Aspect encompasses (For example the Aspect of Wood would be made up from the element wood and, since it is a Tertiary Aspect, the single trait of growth). That said, the Aspects rank determines the number of traits it contains. Primary Aspects have 3 and are generally assumed to be the strongest, secondary have 2 and are seen as just a few steps down from primary Aspects, but tertiary only have one trait and are seen as an entire class lower than the other two and are also more common to have. A being can also only control one Aspect in their entire lifetime, but with training and a fair amount of cleverness they may INFLUENCE another. Aspects also have a tendency to have hereditary orientations, this means if the parents had an orientation towards an aspect there child more than likely shares the orientation of the more powerful parent. Long story short Aspects are the building blocks of this universe, and all powers any character displays regardless of how impossible or miniscule their existence may be they are still bound by these facts.
The main Aspects refers to the Primary and Secondary Aspects whereas the tertiary aspects are seen as minor and are to numerus to contemplate.
Now that I have given you that bases the next question you must be asking is: WHAT THE HELL ARE TRAITS THEN?! Well traits are… complicated… basically traits are concepts that an Aspect embodies and governs. Simple right? Well here is where it gets complex: traits are different for every individual and can link to everything. Now that is not to say that the same trait is so radically different for everyone its very meaning changes or that the trait can become all-powerful and all-encompassing, but the interpretation of what that single trait represents is different for everyone. There can, and mostly are, similar interpretations of a single trait that are practically the same, and ultimately limit a person with that interpretation to what they perceive it can do. That said there are others, far fewer, who see traits far differently and as such use them far differently to the majority. For instance take the trait selflessness. Most could see this as ‘kindness or giving without regard for oneself’ and the power of that trait would manifest as such. Another however could see it as ‘being without self’ and have a power to rid one of all identity. This power may seem to overpower the elemental side of Aspects, and It does really, but very very VERY few are ever able to use the traits that accompany their Aspect. And of those few even FEWER are able to use more than one trait even if their Aspect contains more. And all that ionly comes into play after you factor in those able to actually utilize their Aspect directly… so basically Trait manipulation is only for the top of the top of the TOP.
Now do you see how traits are complicated… sorry if that was hard to follow… it was almost to META for me to even write… *sigh* onwards to more!
Magic… basically it is the way to cheat the Aspect system. All I have talked about so far has been fairly heavy and OP for most world building, I mean I am talking about directly manipulating the building blocks and laws of F.F.G.’s entire universe! That said not many are capable of doing that, really only some immortal races and most elemental races, but that still leaves a CRAP-TON not able to bring any sort of power to bare… that is until MORTALS made a system to INDIRECTLY effect Aspects. Magic is that system, it is far more inclusive, more prevalent, and far more common than the Aspect system is in F.F.G.’s universe. Unfortunately magic isn’t a perfect alternative to Aspects, mostly because it can only really effect the element side of the Aspect system and can only include traits in the smallest of ways, as in effects that MAY accompany a specific element. Magic is also incredibly generalized. Where using ones Aspect directly is an individual path of equal parts discovery and development, Magic is always uses same actions to bring about the same reaction. Think of it like this: Aspects are Art where every piece is different, and even reproductions aren’t the same, and Magic is programing where certain code will always do the same things even if used in a different function. That’s the best way I can describe it… anyway, magic as such can be classified in parallel to Aspects, so for every known Aspect there is an Accompanying magic system, but the same power assumptions and prejudice also carry over. That means people would view magic systems as something like Void>Fire>Wood as the base Aspects convert to the base magic systems.
Now all this is not say either are weaker or inferior to each other, that is up to you as the reader to decide on your own, but that both are different and work in different fundamentally ways.
The main/base Aspects and the traits that go with them are:
Void- space, time, stasis
Light- destruction, resolution, healing
Darkness- creation, domination, death
Earth- steadfastness, durability
Fire- consumption, passion
Water- clarity, adaption
Air- transparency, stealth
Electricity- speed, power
Nature- life, nurture
The base/main Magic Systems rankings and how they are vastly viewed by mortals are:
- Void magic- Taboo, Forbidden, heretically, unknown
- Light magic- Advanced, “holy”, healing
- Darkness magic- Advanced, taboo, “black magic”
- Electricity- combat, enhancement
- Water- combat, hybrid (attack/support)
- Fire- combat, attack
- Air- combat, hybrid
- Earth magic- combat, support
- Nature- support, healing