originally published 2005
Familiars are what we call “pets” in the UMMO. there are many classifications of Familiars in Ummo. Ironically, in a technical sense, Familiars are just one “type,” but we refer to all pets as Familiars because it sounds cool.
Below is a listing of some of the different types of Familiars available:
1-Evoked Demons/Spirits/Gods: A player of sufficient magical/psychic power, or possessed of the proper scroll or item can “Evoke” a demon, spirit or god/demi-god if it is of the same faith as that player (a Norse wizard of sufficient power may evoke Thor, for example).
Evocation means that the spirit evoked is a willing participant and will appear and assist the evoker for the duration of the evocation. The devotion of the evoker determines the duration of the presence of the summoned being within the range of the particular evocation method.
Example: A Norse wizard evokes Thor using the “wand of storms” which has a duration of 15-30 minutes. The evoking wizard has a devotion level of 95/100 and so Thor will assist him for 19minutes 15seconds. In addition, there is a 95 percent chance that Thor will not leave the evoker during a combat situation, even after the duration of the evocation.
The summoned being will return to wherever he was summoned from regardless of the devotion of the evoker immediately after the end of any combat that was happening at the end of the evocation duration.
2-Summoning: A player of sufficent magic/psychic power can Summon any being for which he has the proper spell/scroll/item. Summoning is a strictly forceful process. Summoned creatures appear against their will (or at the very least are neutral about it) and often need to be protected against with proper spells or talismans, else they will turn against their summoner (depending on alignment/faith and devotion.. if the summoner is lucky they may just leave if given the chance)
There are various types of summoning, some require sacrifices or offerings, while some require circles of protection. Should the summoner bring forth a being that requires a protective circle, the summoner may not leave that circle during the duration of the Summoning. certain creatures even require a spell of control AFTER they are summoned.
Once the duration of control over a Summoned creature expires, the summoner would be wise to cast the spell to return that being to it’s realm of origin.
3-Classic Familiars: Certain demons and spirits can be summoned to serve as familiars for the player. Either the demon or spirit is summoned using a permanent sacrifice or spell, or their spirit is drawn into a body crafted by the player to inhabit it. Such familiars will serve faithfully for the remaining life of the player or until they are terminated.
4-Djinn and other “sealed” creatures: Certain creatures and demons(such as Djinn) are bound by talismans, seals, or within prisons both large and small. Should these creatures be freed from these bonds or enslaved using similar bonds, they will serve the player according to the rules of that bond.
Generally this means they are similar to Classic familiars and will serve until death (of the player or themselves). Other times this may mean they will serve for a certain number of combat sessions, or perform a certain number of actions (whether that be creating items, storms or summoning other creatures to do the players bidding).
The player should be careful, however, as a more powerful talisman of the same type that controls the Djinn may be used to wrest control away from the player.
5-Pets: These are animals either tamed or bought, that serve the player as traditional pets, obeying their commands until the termination of the player or themselves. Should a player die and be able to retrieve their pet after returning to the land of the living, these pets will remain loyal.
It is of interest to note that pets of this type are allowed unmolested entry into the Underwold and some have been known to follow their slain masters there to serve them even in death.
6-Bots/Droids/Golems: These are creatures and beings created either through magic, technology or a combination of both. They range in variety and abilities, but all serve unerringly, to death and beyond. Their elements can even be used to recreate or upgrade them should the need arise.
I hope this information helps clear up some questions about how Familiars (pets) work in Ummo. Feel free to post any questions, comments or concerns. As with all things Underworld, nothing is set in stone until the internal Beta begins. Our main aim is to design a system that we feel “makes sense” and follow through with it.
NOTE: BDSM – Many characters have submissives or slaves who are either NPCs or actual player characters. There are a variety of gameplay systems that function similarly to the “Familiars” systems, which enable these “subs” and “slaves” to add additional gameplay possibilities.
There will be more about this in later posts s development progresses.