What the heck is the World of Darkness?
The World of Darkness is a series of generally-horror-fantasy based tabletop RPGs (a lot of which have been modified into LARPs) with a focus on supernatural creatures in a modern setting. It's split into two broad categories, old or classic World of Darkness and New World of Darkness, and published originally by White Wolf and is now published by Onyx Path. If you've heard of Vampire the Masquerade in any context, that's the first and oldest of them; pretty much all the WoDs follow the name format "creature the x." As an RPG, it's more based on story than on Fiddly Dice Rules, compared to a system like Dungeons and Dragons.
For Hex, we’ll be using the New World of Darkness in a diceless format, specifically the God-Machine Chronicle setting elements (most importantly, the God-Machine itself), along with cosmology elements from a few other sources.
For more information, head over to our WoD for Newbies page! Further information on specific supernaturals can be found on individual pages through the Navigation page.
How closely are you sticking to the rules of the World of Darkness?
Not super close. Though we’re sticking to the general outlines of all the splats, we’re willing to blur a lot of the details - it’s a little much to expect the mods to memorize every single book, let alone the players! A rough outline with no major contradictions is the best we can really hope for. We’re playing fast and loose with the setting, after all (Hex isn’t the canonical World of Darkness) and most of the mechanics are being tossed under the bus for ease of play.
That said, if you’re someone more familiar with the World of Darkness, feel free to use your knowledge! Just run any powers by the mods before you go using them willy-nilly. Conversely, if there’s something you want to know more about that isn’t covered here, on the WoD for Newbies page, or on the various line-specific pages, feel free to drop us a line and we’ll go digging around in the ole PDF pile for you.
What's this about repeating time cycles?
Exactly what it says on the tin - every so often, part of the timeline will rewind and repeat. Your characters will keep their memories of these repeats, to some degree; however, upon each reset, the characters will lose a part of their memories of their home worlds, and some of their native powers.
For more information on the time cycles in general, check out this page.
So their memories and powers just disappear?
Nope! After a certain degree of memory loss, characters will begin to remember other things - a life in the city, as though they always lived there. They'll also gain powers, if applicable, by becoming one of the creatures of the World of Darkness. An artificial intelligence might become a demon, one of the Unchained that broke from the God-Machine; a character with dealings with fairies in their canon would probably become a Changeling; someone who hunted monsters in their canon would probably become one of Hex's Hunters; and so on.
Note that characters aren't required to become one of the things that go bump in the night; if you think your character would work best as a human, go for it. If you don’t feel like there’s anything that quite fits your character, talk to a mod, and we can probably help you find something.
How are the game comms organized? Does this game have a network?
There’s only one gameplay community, cityofhex. peopleofhex is the OOC community, containing announcements and greeting posts, and worldofmemeness is the crack and meme comm.
The game doesn’t have an inherent network feature (that is, characters don’t receive access to any kind of network by default). Hex does have typical internet and phone services for a modern city, however, and characters are welcome to either use that network via their own devices (which will work unless they’re highly specialized or fairly old) or buy some in the city. They can then use the internet/phone service to communicate however they otherwise would. Just be aware that the God-Machine watches the internet as much as it does the rest of the city.
There’s an application queue? How does that work?
Details on the application queue can be found on the Applications page!
What’s the character cap?
Players may have two characters at any given time, though if they have a dropped character who remains in the setting, they may NPC that character in select scenes by mod permission. Additionally, players are welcome to suggest characters to be used as mod NPCs.
What kind of characters can we app?
Currently, canon characters and OCs are both allowed. Fan AUs are currently not allowed, and fan characters are allowed on a case by case basis. Canon AUs (such as Kingdom Hearts versions of Final Fantasy or Disney characters) and alternate routes (such as in Fate/Stay Night) are allowed on a case by case basis, based upon how different they are from the original version. Canon-based OCs, such as MMO characters or fantrolls, are generally allowed.
What happens to dropped characters?
Characters who are dropped (or idle out from lack of activity) disappear for about a week of game time - after that, they can still be seen around the city, but they’ve been fully corrupted by the God-Machine and remember nothing about their time as a player character or their own worlds. Talking to them is kind of pointless.
Because of this, anyone who intends to re-app their dropped character with game memories (rather than starting from a fresh slate) must apply as a converted character and regain their memories of their time in game along with their memories of home.
Can I canon-update my character?
At this time, canon updates are not allowed, due to the memory loss factor and overall nature of the game.
What about HMDs?
All players are encouraged to have an HMD in their character journal. However, it does not have to be anon-enabled. There will not be game-wide HMD posts.
What’s the game’s rating? Can we play sex?
This game is for players 18 and up, primarily for horror and violence themes. Players are welcome to thread out sexual scenes, but they must be locked to the comm with an appropriate cut and warnings.
What’s AC like?
Hex is a light AC game - we're more concerned with player presence than with getting a specific number of comments out of everyone each month. For further details on AC, see the information on the main Rules page.
What’s the IC to OOC pace ratio?
IC to OOC days are currently 1:2, with one OOC day serving as "day" and the other as "night" OOCly. The game calendar roughly follows the actual calendar - however, because of time rewinds, this state of affairs won't last for too long.
Do I have to worry about dice? What about other World of Darkness mechanics?
As a general rule, Hex is far more story-focused than rule focused. This is to lessen the load on everyone involved - players won't have to worry about learning to mechanics of the system in order to play and will not have to keep track of things on a character sheet, and mods won't have to track stats for every PC and NPC in the game. The only thing players need to keep track of is their position on the memory loss scale.
Occasionally, mods will call for player dice rolls to decide things such as observation checks and combat. These are typically one ten-sided die with high being favorable, and can be rolled in the Discord chat or through a browser RNG.
Are our characters humanized?
Yes and no. On the surface, all characters appear human; what’s true at the deeper level of reality depends mostly on what your character is. When in doubt, ask the mods.
If your character is roughly human in shape (like an elf, or a Gem from Steven Universe), then their true nature is covered by something similar to a changeling’s Mask upon arrival in the city (though it’s God-Machine based and thus it’s stigmatics who see through it); they’re still what they really are (for now), but most people will see them as human. This holds until they’ve been converted enough that they lose the stigmatic sight.
If, on the other hand, your character couldn’t pass as human even with a Mask (for example, a dragon), then their form is more akin to that of a Beast; their human shape is the only one impressed on the physical reality, and it’s only their soul that retains its true shape. While they might be able to make limited manifestations of their true form happen, it’s always as a shadow laid over their human shape, and it takes a great deal of effort to impose on reality.
Characters whose players intend to convert them to Demons may also adopt a Cover-based style of humanization, with moderator permission.
Do we get to choose what they turn into?
Yes, though moderators reserve the right to cap a particular game line if it’s beginning to overwhelm the game.
How are animal partners handled?
Animal partners will be allowed on a case by case basis, though a good rule of thumb is to ask if they are applicable on their own. For example, most Digimon have enough character that they’re individually appable, and so they couldn’t be brought in as a partner.
If your character relies on their animal partner for survival in some way, please talk to a mod.
Companion animals are capped at two (that’s looking at you, Pokemon trainers), and also suffer from the effects of characters undergoing conversion. They tend to decay into things like cryptids (stigmatic animals with unusual powers) or ghouled animals.
What can characters bring with them?
Whatever they had on them when they were taken, within reason. You can’t have 99 Potions, but you can have whatever bottles physically fit in your pockets.
My character is injured/otherwise unwell. What does this mean for them?
If it was something that happened after birth, upon apping into the game, you have the option of their illness or disability disappearing - but at a cost, because that’s not all the God-Machine takes from them. Characters whose injuries are healed lose one rewind’s worth of memories and powers.
If, however, your character was blind (or whatever) from birth, then the God-Machine can’t do anything to change their fundamental nature. However, the residents of Hex themselves might have a solution, if you seek to pursue it.
My character died in canon. Can I still app them?
Yes! Either your character was snatched up in the moment between their loss of conscious and the end of their body function, or, like injured/disabled characters, they can be brought back at a cost to their memories and powers. Unlike merely injured characters, however, dead characters must pay two cycles worth of memories and powers.
Additionally, death in canon biases a character towards become a Sin-Eater, if they did not already have a bias in that direction or a stronger lean towards something else.
Can our characters die in-game? What happens when that happens?
Characters can and almost certainly will die in game - fortunately, the God-Machine seems to have an interest in keeping that from happening. When a character dies, the gears in the walls soon begin to tick, causing a brief rewind of time. Characters come back remembering their deaths - but with only an hour to spare to avoid facing the same fate again. (If the death is due to illness, starvation, or some other extended condition, they are restored to full health, but still an hour prior to their actual time of death).
Unlike most rewinds, the rest of the characters in the game are unaffected, unless they were directly involved in the death (for example, if one character were to murder another). All characters involved must be noted on the Deaths page and only these characters pay the cost of the rewind. For everyone else, there's no trace that the rewind happened at all. More detail can be found on the Time Cycles page.
It says that new arrivals are stigmatics. What about native AU characters?
Native AU characters are not stigmatics by default (and thus, do not automatically have the ability to see Infrastructure/angels and do not possess glitches). Unless they are demons (who already possess the ability to see the workings of the God-Machine), however, they can become stigmatic through exposure to it - including if they are a kind of supernatural that normally shouldn't be able to.
What language is spoken in Hex? What if our characters don't speak that language?
English is the standard language of Hex, and you can assume that characters who do not normally speak English will still be able to communicate in it. Indeed, unless they were already fluent in English as a second language, English will appear to have replaced their original language (except for things like proper nouns and technical terms specific to a character's world). Their ability to still understand their own language depends on how much of their memory is intact.
Characters with accents, speech impediments, and other traits that could potentially affect communication will still possess them, and illiterate characters will not suddenly become literate. While Hex mostly pings as 'West Coast US' in terms of accent distribution and dialect, characters who have a distinct accent or dialect in a language that isn't English will find themselves coming off with an approximately equivalent English accent/dialect.
Characters whose native language is English who have a second language will be able to use their second language normally. As noted on their extended information page, Demons can speak any language that has a living native speaker.
What about game balance? Is there a power cap? Do native AU characters have to start out as 'starting characters' in WoD terms?
We are absolutely not concerned about concepts of game balance or power caps. These things are both extremely difficult to manage between gamelines in WoD, and incredibly difficult to manage in a meaningful way in jamjar RPs that draw from a variety of canons. As long as there is no abuse of the system between players (and the dice roll system is in place in part to prevent this, though mods cannot enforce its use in player-player interactions), we see no reason to have any kind of power cap or formalized system for powers.
This also includes powers that native AU characters may gain as they develop as supernatural creatures throughout the course of the game; while mods appreciate a heads-up beforehand, players will not be punished for having their characters develop further. They are also welcome to learn abilities from new arrival characters, as much as any given ability is teachable.