- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
If your question isn't covered below, feel free to contact us or ask us in the comments.
G E N E R A L Q U E S T I O N S
I thought Ataraxion was that spaceship game?
In July of 2015, the passengers aboard the Tranquility used their influence over the ship to force it into a jump with the intentions of escaping the clutches of Prime Minister van Rijn, who had returned to claim his property in order to assure the survival of humanity in his universe. This forced jump caused the ship to crash-land on a planet, bringing the game into its new PLANETFALL setting. This setting focuses on sci-fi exploration and survival while continuing the horror themes of the original game setting.
How will my character arrive?
Even though it has crashed, the Tranquility's jump drive continues to malfunction. Erratically, it engages, and draws characters from across the universe to itself.
For the time being, those characters are still pulled inside the defunct medical bay where they wake up inside gravity couches, large metal and glass tanks filled with blue gel-like liquid that are designed to protect passengers from the G-force created by the jump. Upon release from the grav couch, all characters will feel disoriented. It may take them a few moments to regain their bearings and even their short-term memory. New characters will arrive naked, but they'll be able to find a crew-issue jumpsuit and appropriately drab underwear in their size in the wreckage of the medical bay.
Inside the medical bay, for a full day following the jump, a garbled recording will loop erratically from the ship’s intercom system, telling them to take the blue lift to the passenger quarters. The lift, however, is not only out of order when they find it, but it’s completely destroyed. An empty elevator shaft is all the remains. Similarly, the lockers where characters were once able to request items will be destroyed, knocked over and broken open.
On their arm, characters will notice a distorted tattoo. This tattoo is created by the ship’s nanites, injected into them as part of the grav couch’s functionality. These nanites will allow them to explore the wreckage of the ship by accessing certain areas—if they can get to them.
What's the planet like?
The ship crashed in a tropical region of this (presently) unnamed planet. As such, players should note that there are many trees reaching up to 80 meters in the air. In addition to the enormously tall canopy, on the ground, characters will encounter winding and gnarled trunks of thinner trees with heavy leaves and ropy vines. The immediate area gives no indication of any other sentient species living on the planet, but the flora and fauna is unmistakably alive. Some may seem analogous to life that your characters are already used to, but some will be entirely foreign. For specific guidelines on what the plants and animals on the planet look like, please direct your attention to the SETTING page.
While water sources can be found in the form of a nearby two-mile-wide river that sprawls around the crash site about nine miles out, it won’t take characters long to discover that the water is dangerously acidic and burns to the touch. Characters’ nanites can steadily heal the burns (minor burns over a week, more stubborn major burns over the course of a month), or they can be treated by a member of the increasingly important medical team. Finding a source of drinkable water might take a little more work.
Orbiting the planet are two (presently unnamed) moons, one larger and closer and one smaller and farther out. The smaller moon is always visible in the sky, and goes through a full cycle of phases daily concurrent with visible sunlight. The larger moon is visible for 13 hours a day, and has a cycle more in keeping with Earth's. (For information on what this means for werewolves, see the non-human section of the FAQ.)
Due to the tropical climate of the immediate area, characters will not experience considerable seasonal shifts in weather. The air is always hot, muggy enough to catch them off guard with dehydration, and experiences approximately 10 days of consecutive rainfall per month. This rainfall and any other notable changes in weather will be announced or described in mod posts!
What's the status of the crashed ship?
Suffering massive damage from the crash, the Tranquility is no longer structurally sound for characters to enter. With each jump, its position on the cliff face grows more unstable, and the inner workings of the ship suffered greatly from the impact of the ship against the planet. Under no circumstances is the Tranquility considered livable any longer.
Characters may choose to re-enter the ship for short periods to salvage the remains and retrieve new arrivals from inside the grav couches, but these expeditions will be challenging and unsafe. The only power inside the ship is the dark red emergency lighting. Doors (where they’re still in place) continue to malfunction, as will air filtration systems, and characters could easily find themselves locked in and suffocated.
Can we explore the rest of the planet?
Yes, eventually! However, the wreck site is the central hub of character activity for a couple of reasons:
First and foremost, the crashed ship (about thirteen miles from bow to stern) has landed at the mouth of a deep canyon, its enormity teetering at the edge of a cliff. Each time groups of characters head inside to gather resources, the ship sighs and creaks, ready to plummet at any moment into the canyon below. Be careful, be balanced, and try not to upset it, or you might just be the unlucky winner who goes plummeting with it.
This canyon blocks the characters’ progress West, and any progress too far in other directions is limited by symptoms that the characters may find startlingly familiar. Characters who hike fifteen miles out from the wreck site will begin to experience nosebleeds, headaches, and eventual collapse if they continue despite their body’s warning signs. Those who investigate psychically will find that the phenomenon resembles being pulled to the end of a mental “tether.” Through the use of the ABILITIES GRID and some practice, characters can begin to stretch this tether, allowing expansion as the game progresses and characters make headway in their powers.
How will events work?
Previously in Ataraxion, many events were focused internally, within each character's mind. With the setting shift, the game’s focus on types of events will also shift. Every other month, a game-wide plot will focus on some event that confronts the characters with external horrors or changes the setting as they understand it—either through expansion or alteration. Players interested in running game-wide events should check out the PLAYER PLOT PAGE.
All mod-run plots will be placed on the CALENDAR PAGE at the beginning of each month. Five to seven days before a plot or event is due to start, an official planning post will be made in the OOC community. This post will serve as an outline of the plot itself, as well as provide a space for players to hash out any individual plans they may have. Should an event require it, there will also be an OOC closing post to tie things up. A closing OOC post is simply meant for reference; tags will not suddenly close on a post after the event is over, but time has "officially" moved on after that point.
What is a "jump"? What does the jump drive do?
While in flight, the Tranquility would use wormhole technology in order to move great distances through space. The jumps took advantage of a point where the curvature of spacetime was particularly weak. At those points, the ship created a mini-wormhole to slip through, appearing on the other side.
These wormholes encompassed the entire ship so that it could pass instantaneously from one position in space to another. In order to open a wormhole, the jump drive first accelerates the particles around the ship to extreme speeds, opening a bridge from one position in space to another. Using this dimensional “fold” to bridge the points, the drive pulls negative energy from the bridge universe in order to keep the ship stable and both portals open.
Though the process lasts only a second, the time in the bridge universe is unquantifiable. Space and time work differently in it, as some characters experienced in their last moments aboard Tranquility. Because of the massive amounts of energy required to power the jump, the drive cannot be used consecutively and must replenish its power supply before executing another jump.
Due to the damage caused in the wreck, the ship cannot fully enter the bridge universe when it creates wormholes anymore, leaving it stranded on the planet and incapable of movement. All the same, it keeps trying whenever it generates enough energy to do so. These attempts cause their own slew of negative effects for the area around the ship.
Just as the G-forces generated by the jump were too dangerous on board for the characters to withstand without being secured in a grav couch, the acceleration of particles surrounding the ship deters anyone from getting too close. When the ship begins to jump, it essentially accelerates the vibrational frequencies of all molecules within one mile. These accelerated particles could easily rip a human apart just as it rips apart the mile of dead forest in the immediate area around the ship, and just as it deteriorates the cliff it teeters on. With each attempted jump, the ship sinks lower, as if burying itself in the planet’s crust.
What's the function of the nanites now?
Characters who arrive on the planet through the grav couch will still have nanites implanted in their bodies. These nanites will continue to offer slow, small-scale healing to characters and grant access to various parts of the ship as characters salvage what they can.
The nanites are also responsible for the game’s translation function. Should characters choose to remove their nanites, they will no longer be able to understand characters speaking in other languages, except through telepathy. Level 1 telepathy is sufficient, with concentration, for characters to understand one another through, but it is a mentally exhausting process. For more information on character telepathy, see the ABILITIES GRID.
Upon and after the crash, characters will find their nanites scrambled, with the specific crew numbers on their arms no longer legible. These tattoos will resemble corrupted zalgo text.
Wait, telepathy? Our characters have powers?
Yes. Upon crash and subsequent arrival, all characters will find themselves exhibiting low-level psychic abilities. Characters who were previously practicing these abilities will find themselves snapped back to the most rudimentary level of the powers, struggling to expand them once more.
These powers can be leveled up through hard work and practice, which OOCly presents as providing proof of additional activity to the ABILITIES GRID page.
Do characters have access to electricity?
If they make it! Electrical power, like all things on this planet, will be subject to character construction. Though the Tranquility still seems to have some power, this was partially generated through the purification system in the O2 Gardens and partially generated by the chemical reactions taking place in the engines, so there are no batteries or generators to reclaim without need for serious expert overhaul. Characters interested in setting up renewable energy for the planet should contact the mods to discuss their plans.
Does this game have a network?
Yes! There are currently two in-game options for network communication: mirrors and digital.
The mirror network utilises a spell adapted from the standard two-way mirror magic shown in Harry Potter. Shards of mirror have been retrieved from the Tranquility's wreckage, had their sharp edges rendered safe, and been charmed to communicate with other shards. All posts on this network are visual, and go out to all other mirror shards at once; there are no options for filtering, privacy, or recording of messages. If your character is using this network, please put "mirror" in the subject line of your posts or comments!
The digital network has been rebuilt from the remains of the Tranquility's original communications network. Individual communication devices have been installed with a new, hacked operating system and communicate using wireless routers spread around the area. This network can be voice, video or text, and messages can be filtered or made private. However, there is not an anonymous option, and there is a storage limit on how much data can be archived, making text the most efficient communication option. Characters will have to choose a username for use on this network: please put this in the subject lines of your posts or comments!
Does my character get assigned a job/rank?
All character contributions to the setting, role in the new society on the planet, and jobs will be decided ICly by the characters themselves and perceived need. If you would like your character to establish a business or department of some kind, contact a mod and start recruitment in the effort. An information page on this subject will be added as the culture develops.
G A M E P L A Y Q U E S T I O N S
Tell me about the communities.
ataraxion is the network community, and is where all network-style communication will take place, either using your character's communication device or, if they are of a high enough level, telepathy. Your character may use the network as a personal journal, a blog, or a private messaging system. If a video/audio/text post leads to third-person interaction, you may use action tags, but all prose starters should be posted in the log comm. NOTE: Presently, the network is in disuse due to the ship crash. No posts should be made to this community.
ataraxionlogs is where all log or prose (in person) interactions take place. This community is mainly for prose tags, but we'll also accept actionspam logs.
ataraxionooc is the OOC community, where players can post OOC notices, introductions, hiatuses, drops, canon updates, or general discussions. Mod or plot notices concerning the game will also be posted here with the journal ataraxites.
ataraxioff is the meme/spam community. If you like to fool around or post silly stuff or subject your character(s) to memes, this is the place to do it! If you don't, that's okay; joining this comm is entirely optional.
How is IC/OOC pacing handled here?
Ataraxion is a slow-to-medium paced game, and we operate on a 1:1 day ratio. That means 1 OOC day (24 hours) will equal about 1 IC day and night.
What are the activity requirements? What is an activity check?
An activity check is our way of making sure that you're still around and being active with your characters! Activity checks will be run for one week at the end of every month, and require one proof of activity for each character. The activity requirements for Ataraxion are as follows:
One post in ataraxion or ataraxionlogsThese comments must be consecutive within one thread, and cannot be added together from multiple threadjacks. To apply to that month's AC, posts (or the posts you are tagging into) must be dated to that month (ex: for January AC, a thread on a post made on December 25 will not count). The post must also occur ICly within the relevant month, meaning a post backdated to December may not be used for January AC. Comment chains should be counted as only one unique tag.
One thread containing at least 10 comments from your character in ataraxion
One thread containing at least 5 comments from your character in ataraxionlogs
Characters who were accepted in the most recent app round are exempt from the activity check during their first month in-game. Unless you have declared an official hiatus before the start of the activity check, all players must complete the activity check in order to remain part of the game. If you are having trouble making the activity requirements with a character, you can take a strike for that month. Please see the next question for full details on what this entails!
All game deadlines adhere to the EST timezone (including apps, reserves, and AC). AC proofs must meet requirements before the close of AC, which is at midnight EST on the last day of each month.
What is an activity strike and how do I clear it?
If any player fails to make passing activity at any single activity check, they can opt to take a strike. It takes four months of sufficient activity (note: this does not include hiatuses) to clear a strike once it has been earned. If a character with a strike already on their record fails an activity check, they will be dropped from the game.
For example, Sally Mae fails to make activity with Goku in January. She provides full activity for him in the February, March, April, and May checks. Her strike is repealed, and she has a clean activity record once more.
If Sally Mae goes on hiatus at any point during those four months, she will need to pass June’s check as well before the strike clears. If Sally Mae fails an activity check during those four months, she will be dropped from the game.
Instead of waiting out the four months of standard activity to clear the strike, players may choose to submit double activity for two activity checks in a row. In our above example, this would mean Sally Mae submitted two threads, posts, or logs that counted as sufficient activity for the months of February and March.
Can my character die? Is it a permanent death?
Yes and yes. However, not all of the events will be deadly, and all fatal situations will come with OOC warnings. Character deaths should be run by the mods to guarantee suitability with the game or specific plot mechanics. Once you kill your character, however, be aware that this is a perma-drop for that character! You will not be able to reapp the same character to the game, although other players will still be allowed to app that character in the future.
Otherwise, your character will probably sustain a few crippling injuries that can be fixed up over time by the nanites or by a character with medical know-how. (Be aware that the healing process may take a while. Choose your events wisely!)
What happens to my characters after they're dropped? Can I reapply with that character later?
After being dropped, characters will mysteriously vanish from the planet. No one seems to know for sure where precisely they have gone, or even when it might have happened - only that no trace of them can be found or felt.
Players can reapply for dropped characters only if they did not kill that character in-game. If a player wishes to reapply for a character they had previously dropped, they have the option of bringing that character back with their memories of the game universe intact or starting fresh. When dropping a character, keep in mind that Ataraxion does not have a grace period following drops; if you wish to reapply for a character that you have previously dropped, you must resubmit an application.
Can I canon update my character?
You may canon update your character every time Tranquility executes a spacetime jump, or once a month. Updates are only applicable to canon material or OC verses. They will wake from the grav couches with their new memories. Their previous memories and experiences in the game universe will also remain, though it may take them some time to remember.
There are currently no hard rules regarding how long players must wait before updating to newly available canon information, but we do request you take care with spoilers out of consideration to fellow players. In order to canon update, make a post to the requests page. Once approved, be sure to give notice to your fellow players via the OOC comm!
What's the game's policy on fourth walling?
Fourth walling is not barred by the game's mechanics, and will have to be dealt with on a player-by-player basis. Never assume it's okay to fourth wall another character without getting permission first.
What about muncesting?
Please don't do it! While we understand your characters may sometimes brush shoulders via mutual acquaintances, threading with ourselves isn't what any of us are here to do.
You may not apply for closely-related characters from the same canon, and you should try to minimize any interactions between characters that you play. Ideally, it shouldn't happen at all!
Is there a test drive meme available?
Every other month, the mod account will post a test drive meme to the meme community at ataraxioff. These test drive memes will be tailor-made to include relevant prompt information about what the setting looks like for individuals apping at that time. These test drive memes will take place during non-game plot months.
Sounds like Bad Things are going to happen.
Short answer: yep. Bear in mind that this is a horror game, and events may take place of a triggering and/or disturbing nature. Your character may be scarred for life, suffer horrible injuries, die, or worse. While some events or elements of the overarching plot will not have traditional opt-out features, if there is an event or mission that makes you uncomfortable in any way, you do not have to participate. Just be sure to drop us a note so we know what's up!
A P P L I C A T I O N Q U E S T I O N S
What canons and types of characters are allowed?
Characters from most established canons (films, television shows, books, webcomics, games, etc.) can be applied for. A list of the types of characters we do not accept applications for is on our RULES page. If in doubt, ask a mod before submitting your application!
OCs created based on open worlds (including some tabletop settings) are allowed. However, canon OCs, or original characters placed within an existing canon universe (i.e. a Hogwarts student OC), are not applicable. To clarify, while we would accept characters from many traditional tabletop settings that focus on the generation of unique characters within a set of guidelines, such as World of Darkness or Dungeons & Dragons, a Star Wars OC would not be applicable.
Can I app original characters?
Yes! Please see the APPLICATION PAGE for further detail on what we'd like to see in an OC application. Keep in mind that applications for OCs are held to more strict guidelines due to the more malleable nature of their canons and characterizations.
What about AU or CRAU characters?
Can I pick my own PB?
As of now, the only AU characters allowed in-game are canon AUs, other-game CR AUs and malleable protagonists, such as the player-characters from Dragon Age, Mass Effect, or Fallout.
If apping a CRAU character, you will be required to provide a clear and concise summary of the growth of your character at the game he/she was at previously in the AU section of the application. If the character is rendered near or completely unrecognizable as the original character, we may deny your previous game history. Also, all previous game history concerning sex games is fine, but remember to keep it tasteful. While there may be sexual themes that take place in Ataraxion, we are not a sex game. We do allow both a canon and an AU version of a character to be in-game at the same time.
PBs are encouraged for OCs and for characters from canons that provide little or no visual resources, such as books. They can also be used in exceptional circumstances, such as cases in which a character's physical body/appearance is altered by the mechanics of the game (e.g. a non-humanoid character being given human form).
In all other cases, we require players to stay true to their canon medium; if you are playing from a comic or a game that provides usable pictures of your character, the substitution of a PB is not permitted. We understand that in some circumstances these resources will be limited, you must contact a mod and discuss what makes the situation exceptional.
Are non-human characters allowed? What happens to them on arrival?
All types of characters are allowed! However, as Ataraxion relies heavily on physical interaction with the character's environment, your character may undergo some changes if his/her original form conflicts with general gameplay. Characters who are already in organic, humanoid bodies have nothing to worry about, such as cyborgs, elves, vampires, aliens, etc. However, all other characters are subject to humanization as the plot of the game requires. This necessity will be identified based upon the description of your character's species/race in your application and be evaluated based on factors like height and body composition. Your PB choice should be specified in the "appearance" section of the application. In addition, players may choose to humanize any non-human characters not covered by the above rules as a side effect of the hyperspace jumps, but this is entirely optional.
Downsizing height is always mandatory. The maximum height for potential crew members is eight feet, since anything taller than that won't fit inside a grav couch — which is where your character arrives during a jump.
Two moons means enhanced lunar influence, and werewolf characters will find themselves in a near-constant struggle with control of their wolf side. The smaller (and farther) moon will not provoke a full shift, but rather will bring out aggressive and animalistic behaviors in the wolves when full. The nearer moon will always provoke a full shift when full on the 15th of every month.
While the tree canopy should offer more than enough coverage from direct sunlight to keep them alive, vampire characters will not be automatically provided rations of blood. They will need to hunt, barter, or persuade player characters (with permission) or NPCs (with mod contact) to keep them fed unless they can find another solution.
If you have questions about your character's particular situation, though, feel free to contact a mod or simply leave your question here!
What is humanization? What will happen to my character when they're humanized?
Humanization is when a character arrives in the game in an entirely new, human body, and is required for non-humanoid and non-organic characters, as well as any others if their original form conflicts with general gameplay. This will be identified by the species/race section of your application, and your PB choice should be specified in the "appearance" section of the application. Please see more about this requirement under the previous question.
The new body humanized characters will arrive in will mean the loss of all abilities or powers linked to the physiology of their original form. For example, as Bumblebee from Transformers will no longer be a robot, he will no longer be able to transform into a car, and as Sam Wheat from Ghost will no longer be a ghost, he will no longer be intangible. However, if players choose to do so, they have the option to give their humanized characters equivalent powers in their new bodies, defined in the abilities section of their application. Bumblebee could instead find he has some shapeshifting capabilities, and Sam Wheat could phase through objects or turn invisible at will.
Humanized characters with abilities which come from a more spiritual or ambiguous internal source will be able to keep these powers on being humanized.
Are canonly dead characters appable?
Yes. If your character dies in canon, it's entirely possible that the jump drive would have picked him or her up just before they died. The ship's medbay is state-of-the-art, after all; it can't cure death, but it can patch up just about anything else. If your character is some variety of reanimated or undead, that's cool, too! Provided that your character is a little more self-aware than your average zombie, undead characters are also appable. Keep in mind, however, that if your character is a ghost, spirit, or just corporeally-challenged, he or she must receive some kind of physical body upon arrival on the ship.
In the case of characters who are arriving injured, their physical condition is mostly up to the player's discretion. While they may arrive bruised and battered, however, please note that any fatal injuries will have been healed before they are released from the grav couch.
Are there power caps? Will my character lose his/her abilities?
Yes and no. Ataraxion does have power caps, but we don't depower characters unless players specifically request it. The new Planetfall setting has an increased focus on action and adventure components appropriate to the use of character powers.
As a general rule, any teleporting, flying, time manipulation or reality warping powers will be greatly limited. Teleporters will find they cannot teleport beyond the tether of the ship’s connection, with flying characters experiencing the same difficulty in going upwards. Time manipulators will have no access to their abilities, unfortunately. Reality warpers will find they can add the illusion of something to the scenery that already exists on the planet, but cannot change, alter, or remove any features of the planet itself to accommodate their reality. Additionally, that reality will be intangible. Note: If your character has another potentially game-breaking ability along these lines that we haven’t considered here, please be aware we may ask you to limit that power during the application process.
Other powers, including mystical or superhuman powers, will not need to be limited. For example, Captain America or a SPARTAN from the Halo universe would not be subject to the power caps, since their abilities do not in any way interfere with the setting, but rather help them engage with it, while Thor or Haruhi Suzumiya would because both flying and reality warping are limited abilities. Characters who receive their magic from an outside power source would unfortunately be cut-off from that source.
We do ask on the application for suggestions on how best to limit your characters' abilities. We're certainly not interested in rendering anyone unplayable, but we may ask for additional power reductions if your character is massively overpowered in comparison to the rest of the game or in any way breaks the setting.
Are pets allowed?
Yes, your pet can come with you! However, since a pet or familiar will count as inventory, they will be subject to our more stringent item requests, and may find themselves at the mercy of the game’s plot. The planet characters find themselves on is not hospitable - please be aware that serious harm might come to them if you decide to bring them along.
Can I reuse sections from a previous app on my app for Ataraxion?
Yes, you may reuse information sections from previous apps you have written, such as character history or personality. If your application was submitted under a different username than the one you are submitting your application under now, please make sure your responses in the name field and personal journal field match.
I applied before other players, but they're getting approved ahead of me. What gives?
When our responses and app approvals are slow, or when we appear to skip you, it's probably because we are unfamiliar with your character's canon and are approving those with canons we are familiar with. Don't worry, we'll get to you! We just need a little time to catch up with your character's canon in order to make properly informed decisions.
The Ataraxion mod team approves applications on a vote-system. Each application, even when the mods are all familiar, requires two or more mods to vote "yes" on it before it can be approved. If any one mod requests revisions, we will request revisions of a given application.
- - - - - - - - - - - -
N A V I G A T I O N