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Viola Longdawning is one of the Instilled, people who have been permanently fused with maginaria. This transforms their body and grants an innate magical ability at the cost of a permanent headmate that often has different priorities than their waking minds do; they often sleepwalk (or even sleep-cast) as their dreams let their subconscious selves take over.
Viola is a Transpositionist, a mage specializing in travel and teleportation. This takes skill, precision, and a lot of fancy math.

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Johan Silverfox sits atop a wall. Yeah, I'm on a Delyria kick again, redrawing some old characters who haven't seen light in a while. The Silverfox family have been the rulers of the mechanical island of Grandegear for generations, passing down both the Chief Engineer title and the surname through adoption. Johan is brilliant but very sheltered, and it takes him a while to figure out how to operate in the outside world. He and Kinto were roommates for a year, which scarred them both a little.

This would be done in Lua/Löve2D now (back then it was BlitzBasic), and I'm still working out other details, but the advantage of this is that I already know it's fun and I already know how the basic game mechanics go, and that's actually a big help.

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And there was a dream I had that I never really saw through. "Septima Deluxe", where the basic puzzle mechanics changed stage by stage depending on who it's themed to. I want to use that again and actually make it work, some 18-ish years later with that much more experience.

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I've been looking over older projects - there's a definite part of me that likes having a side project to work on outside of work hours. For a little while it was the Polyopolis story, and before that was the abortive attempt at XenoTerm again (which stopped because I was depending on something working that turned out not to). But the most successful project I've ever done alone was Septima, and I know a whole lot more about code now than I did back when I wrote it...

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Kinto Rofo of the Tximisti, a lightning-mage whose brazen defiance of his people's traditions led their shamans to keep an eye on him - he'd be a force for powerful change, it just had to be the right kind. It was; he was enough of a shock to the system that he paved the way for the Tximisti to start taking part in the wider world as equals. Kinto himself is proud and tempermental but good at heart and loves to show off, especially when throwing lightning around is exactly what someone needs him to do.

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Luen Mazarîn (spelling varies) is an old character of mine, and here he is posing with his maginaria companion, Clorin.
Luen trained as a summoner, one who communicates with spirits. In person when they manifest in the physical world and during a meditative trance when he sends his own mind across to theirs. He was brought up in a strict religious family but rejected their ways as soon as he was away; he doesn't fear gods any more than any other spirit he's talked with.

She found his notes and put the pieces together, and was eventually able to convince the pride of lion-mutants that she could save them. They were human-equivalent smart, it turns out, just mostly nonvocal and with a lot of feline instincts built in. She found homes for all of them in time, and even brought a couple with her to Elseways when she finally joined the Corps.

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Did a little more work on J'Novo's backstory. His creator was trying to create "actual" lion-people instead of what Neena's world had had up to that point (human on the inside with cosmetic mods for the head shape and fur and so on). It backfired when the experiments turned on their creator, which activated the auto-distress-call linked to his life signs, which is how Neena wound up there in the first place. At a remote lab surrounded by what appeared at first to be bloodthirsty mutant lions.

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Jonovan Donovan deNovo, or "J'Novo" for short, is from the same universe as Neena, although he wasn't one of her experiments - he was someone else's, and he would've been "disposed of" if she hadn't stepped in and took him aboard her ship. He was more feral-looking then, but she saw his potential and taught him to read and speak (though his voice is sometimes too low and grumbly to understand). He needs the cane to stand upright; all those heads are rather heavy.

My daydreams are still on this "cerberoids are cute" kick. That's the name I've adopted for them - the three-headed canid shape - although I also sort of like lowercase-c "cerberus" as a species as well, analogous to lowercase-p pegasus. Cerberus and Pegasus were specific individuals. Cerberoids, though, would be the more general "anything canid and three-headed" ones. I guess you could even go to "cerberiforms" to extend it to ursines, mustelids, and so on - anything caniform.

Split mode is useful when she's trying to make an ethical decision, because while each head shares all of her memories, their personalities are different, and they prioritize different aspects of a situation. The Asura head (with the wild hair) asks "is this something I want to do?". The Anubis head (center, with the tiara) asks "Is this act good for society?". The Cerberus head (with the long flowing hair) asks "Is this the act of a hero or a villain?".

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A new picture of Ceranura ("Cera" for short). She's a few years older now; she was 15 in her older pictures, so figure on her being 19-ish here. She's gone from a trainee exorcist to taking on jobs herself, anywhere evil spirits or mischevious ghosts are causing trouble. Cera's mastered the ability to swap between "Split" mode, where her heads think independently and each controls two hands, to "Focus" mode where she is a single three-headed six-armed being. They're both useful at times.

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Fendrian Mandrake got an updated wardrobe - runes around his hat brim, the Featherglass emblem embroidered on his coat, and some nice big pockets. He gets around more now as an official traveling researcher, writing reports that get printed up and published across Delyria. He's still not a very powerful mage, but he's very good at analysis, able to pick apart how spells or other magical effects work and add their techniques to his ever-growing bag of tricks.

youtube.com/watch?v=R-jMdkt7ba

A large part of Jama's inspiration comes from this song, written by the same artist (Kevin Phetsomphou) who did the soundtracks to the fangames Megaman Unlimited and Megaman Rock Force. A hideout full of hidden passages, mazes that go nowhere, and giant video screens full of static. Defeating Jama gives Delta the Static Field module; by itself it makes an energy-absorbing aura that can block projectiles, and it combines with other modules to make other field effects.

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Jama, AKA Kitsune of Mythos, is much more technologically apt than she looks. She's a specialist in signal-jamming and interference, able to knock out navigation beacons, surveillance systems, and anything else that might get in the way of Mythos' heists. Her fur has a silvery sheen; when she wraps herself in her tails, she looks like a ball of video static.
Delta there is out to bring Mythos to justice. I haven't decided yet what "CHANGE" stands for, I just thought it was a cute acronym.

To be clear, it's not like we turn humans away at the gate. They're allowed to visit. It's more that they're not expected to stay unless they have a good reason to. Like "I fell in love with a non-human and I don't care if I never see another of my kind" good.

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Polyopolis has been changed forever, but so has Elseways itself. They still scan people on entry (like this Arcanine guy here), but the rules are much more lax now. Elseways is ready to become part of a larger universe, with Annex and Polyopolis and maybe even farther-out places. You can't make any kind of world out of a single city - it takes lots of different kinds of people, and now the gates are open.

I keep using Pokémon as shorthand for "obvious outsiders", but there are lots of new kinds of people coming into the city from other worlds. Bangaa, moogles, and viera, Reploids (don't call them "Mavericks"), Mobians, Mimiga, and all sorts of folk from other worlds. The one thing we still don't have are humans. Humans have enough worlds they can travel to, and they're a majority anywhere they go. This is a place for everyone who's something other. Those of the Ways that are Else, in other words.

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Polyopolis has been changed forever, but so has Elseways itself. They still scan people on entry (like this Arcanine guy here), but the rules are much more lax now. Elseways is ready to become part of a larger universe, with Annex and Polyopolis and maybe even farther-out places. You can't make any kind of world out of a single city - it takes lots of different kinds of people, and now the gates are open.

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XenoChat

The official server of the City of Elseways.