A long and interesting year has come to a close, and with it comes the reminder to look back on the year and take stock on what we've done.
The pandemic has made the passage of time strange, and we are already strange people. For us self-immolating perfectionists with bad object permanance and ghosts in our brain, this is a crucial step for maintaining sanity and motivation. Invariably, we look back at some of our best work and say "Wait, that was this year?"
This critical step puts fresh wind in our sails. We're going to need a good wind to complete our goals for 2022.
It's high time we gave y'all a game, and a setting. And with one million words on this Codex, we should be able to polish it up, trim it down, and give you both.
Come and see what we've wrought.
More is coming.
This has been a year to discover a lot of myself. I will remember 2021 as a hard year, but also a defining year. I learned how to work with myself better, and that's going to lead into more and more Ethnis in 2022.
Our 2021 Feats
Monolith: Path of Transcendance
Our crowning achievement of 2021 has to be our production of the Monolith: Path of Transcendance Zine. Based closely on the Monoliths of Ethnis, this Zine is a great for spicing up any homebrew, or to give you a tease of what to expect from the E.Lite TTRPG!
This was a year of great personal change us! Jacklyn began gender-affirming treatment, Tyler moved up in his job, and the two of them moved in together to create a proper central Ethnis HQ!
Presented in no particular order, these are the articles which performed the best by likes, and which we are all very proud of. Reviewing these is always a reminder of how long a year really is. It feels like we wrote some of these a lifetime ago.
I'm getting into my grove with writing articles. Bonding Band was a personal challenge to me to write an entire narrative article start to finish. Did it in two weeks! Makes me excited to see what we got for 2022!
The Old Homes are the ruins of Vadakendanic cities which lay buried below hundreds to thousands of years of Jhoutaioan Coral growth. These complexes still thrum with the echoes of the old world. Lonely, they crave tenants. They want to be lived in.
Lusanti Marchois is a famous and divisive lifestreamer-turned-journalist who has gone into underground hiding after researching the history of the Jadey family.
Johnny Durange was a FirstHeart Jhoutigari marksman during the Blood Snow Offensive. He was born to a poor family in the slums of Calgary on Earth. At the age of twenty, he enlisted for the Aempian Military.
To be a Monolith is to be Enlightened. Enlightenment is the transcendant state of grace achieved through mastery of an art. It grants insight into the nature of our world, and some power over it.
Geode Coral is a domesticated coral species native to Jhoutai. The competitive markets around it encouraged rapid coral growth techniques, which defined the future terraformation and fabrication industries.
The Sazashi are one of the primary Sophont of Ethnis. They were created as a hybrid species of Sazakraht and Verin. While their Traits are an asset, they provide the Sazashi with a dilemma of identity.
Grimoires are a type of Meta-Tech invented circa 7800 CS by House N'Chear to preserve and store the Soul of a dying entity. They are a store of memories.
Short, stout, and powerful. They are the most industrious of the Sazashi.
Intro to Technology
Mecha, Orga, and Meta: The Technology in Ethnis has diverged from the familiar and into three Tech Clades, each alike in worth but differing in use, fabrication, and resource. What's your favorite?
These savory meatbugs are a staple of Jhoutaioan culinary traditions. Their meat is highly savory, buttery, and slightly bitter. It is most frequently compared to shellfish and beef.
The Bonding Band is a piece of symbolic jewelry that came into practice with the invention of the Fær Consenti language. It symbolizes the 'ownership' of one Hedonite to another.
The deserts, corralums, and deep chasms of the Kajh-Tai Region have molded a rugged, exotic, and alien ecosystem, even when compared to the rest of Jhoutai.
The frozen north of Jhoutai. Peaks like jagged fangs pierce the grey sky, whenever it can be seen through the blinding snow. Only cities buried deep in the earth survive here.
The Tel-Nege Region forms the eastern cap of the Jhoutai Mainland. Home to the oldest Nege-Trees in existence, it is a place still not fully explored and not even close to being tamed.
Lunar Polyps are a family of polyps which have a meaningful sensitivity to the Jhoutaioan moons of Ansang and Leuka.
Snapvine is a type of plant that grows in many different regions and conditions. It is a carnivorous family of plants, with a snapping mechanism and venom for the capture of prey.
Mark of Annihilation
The Mark of Annihilation is a sacrament of the code of chivalry by which the Pact abides. You will find it peppered through the smoldering ruins of their victories.
Popularized by the Vadakendanic Procession, a Sepulchre is a vault in which a Divinorium is entombed. Their sizes range from tens to hundreds of feet, depending on their placement and the status of the Monolith before their death.
Best Introductory Article
I can promise you that that page is going to get really cool in 2022. It's our main page, and we have a lot planned that will spill over into a more sleek and, hopefully, more interactive edition of that page!
In 2021, Ethnis grew by 172,000 words. Some of them were even good. A solid chunk of this text was likely BBCode, and over half is Narrative content pending editing and cleanup. In 2022 we may shrink this number as we cut down and clean up the Codex. I'll tell you how that went a year from now.
2022: Coming Attractions
You've watched us grow this Codex for years now, and at last the time has come to polish it. Our upcoming Codex updates will gear it towards being paired with E.Lite for play, with extended lore catered to those who love learning the setting's many detaiils.
The E.Lite RPG Engine
Some of you have been waiting a very long time to see what will come of our RPG engine, and to see what form it will take. While quietly tinkering with it last year, Jacklyn swapped out the engine of E.Lite. Stay tuned for the ruleset this year, as well as a guide on how to play your setting in it.
We're dipping our toes into podcasting! Stay tuned for an 8-episode pilot season about the Regions of Jhoutai. Episodes will be 15-20 minutes long, with an end segment for us to respond to comments and questions.
There are many half-complete stories within Ethnis. Stories which we began, but haven't the time or clarity to finish.
Rather than allowing these tales to sit, unread, Jackie will break them up into clean, edited chapters and post them for Patrons to read and to encourage her to finish.
Jhoutai Phase 2 — E.Lite Module
This summer, Tyler is taking a sabbatical from his dayjob to spend time with Oscar, who will be visiting, and to work on a survival oneshot adapted from Tel-Nege, one of the locations in Project Jhoutai.
Our goal is to use it as a testbed and release candidate for an introductory E.Lite module. Playtesting will begin with Patrons. If it goes well, expect a physical publication to follow!
January, February, March
- January: Refine the Banners template with our Discord!
- January: Collate E.Lite notes into one document to missing rules
- February: Reveal the updated Hedon and Sorrow icons
- February: Draft missing E.Lite rules
- February: Begin recording Weekly Podcast
- March: Refactor the E.Lite RPG Setting Conversion Guide
- March: Art teasers of the upcoming Ethnis module
- March: Refresh Introduction to The Banners
April, May, June
- April: Finish Human articles
- April: Coordinate conversion of 2-3 E.Lite worlds, including Ethnis
- May: Finish Unseen articles
- May: Continue conversion of 2-3 E.Lite worlds, including Ethnis
- June: Write the prototype of the E.Lite Module
- June: Writing any needed E.Lite rules for the next Module draft
- June: Finish Sophont article suite
July, August, September
- July: SummerCamp!
- July: Create a bunch of Item and Technology articles
- August: Finish Meta articles
- August: Polish the E.Lite articles
- September: Release E.lite, the Module, and the Podcast
- September: Wrap-up the Codex refactor
October, November, December
Our plans this far out are very tentative, but these last three months are typically very busy offline, and we are leaving them as buffer for if any other plans fall behind.
We are eternally grateful to our followers, friends, and family.
Thank you for believing in us, supporting us, and exacerbating us.
You're the ones who encourage us to reach ever-higher.
Here's to a new year!
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