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Our Kickstarter campaign has started!  Please support us in making our newest book, Heola: The Starborn, come to life!

“Deep in the desert, beyond where even the serpentine crawn dare to tread, a race of mystic nomads traverse the paths their people have followed for thousands of years. Reserved and enigmatic by nature, these wanderers have gained a reputation of being aloof and out-of-touch. In truth, however, they are perhaps more deeply connected to the world around them than any other of The Ten Races.”

Visit our Kickstarter page and back this wonderful project!


— The Flying NightBear Games Team

Ancestral Abilities and a New Book Series

Since releasing Beyonder we’ve gotten many questions about our world, especially The Ten Races.  In response, we’re happy to announce Heola: the Starborn, the first in a series of ten books about The Ten Races, coming soon!

The books will describe the origins, history, and modern life of each Race, and provide a new set of Ancestral Abilities for each one. They will help you to create depth in your stories, and more potential actions for your characters. For a glimpse of these new Ancestral Abilities, keep reading!

As with all things in the Beyonderverse, everything is derived from the Six Energies.  The Ten Races have been around since the start of the Third Era of the Fifth Age of the World.  In the 5000+ years since then, the Energetic residue of the lives of generation after generation has left a permanent impression on the makeup of every individual alive today.  

Great power is available to those who attune themselves to their ancestors.  The Ancestral Abilities bestowed through this connection are different for each race.  The ephemeral and mysterious Heola, for example, strengthen their ancestral connection through solitary meditation under the stars.  The stoic and passionate Crawn, on the other hand, can only achieve this power through physical training to the point of utter exhaustion, after which their Abilities reveal themselves.

What can Ancestral Abilities allow you to do? A crawn can learn to release various poisons through their bite; strike fear into enemies and inspire courage in allies with their passion; or defy death through the force of their resolve.  A heolas, on the other hand, can bond with spirits of the desert; call forth massive sand storms; or rain down starfire.

We don’t want to send out spoilers, but we hope this taste of things to come whets your appetite!  Look for our upcoming Kickstarter, beginning in mid May, to get first access to this new material and help us continue to bring the world of Beyonder to life.

The Lesaneth, the Heola Protectors

The Heolas

The Heolas

Since ancient times, heola have served the world of Tamarra by becoming Protectors of something they choose – land, folk, or even an idea. Here Aktil Na Baylarrasa, a long-lived and well-travelled martle, shares his encounter in the Suong Mountains with Drammar, a heolas Protector of the Land.

From Aktil Na Baylarrasa:

In the year SP~4,988*, my journey took me to the Suong Mountains, in the far southwestern corner of the Tamarran Continent.  These lands are dry and hot, with little vegetation. Nestled among the twisted chains of long cordillera, the ranges of the mountain, are many high, flat shelves.  These are usually small, measuring at most a few miles in length and typically far less in width. It is on one of these shelves that I found safety from a band of goblins that had been following me for days.  Many of these evil creatures infest the Suong Mountains. They have built their own kingdoms within the mountains and claim parts of them as their own.

Here I encountered Drammar, the heolas who served as Protector of this land of Suong Mara, nestled between two high peaks.  Not knowing which languages this heolas spoke, and since I know many, as is the custom for my folk, I chose to speak in the native tongue of the heola, Sahan.

“Greetings, heolas of the mountain.  I am the martle named Aktil Na Baylarassa.”  I held out my hands in recognition and bowed slightly.

Drammar also bowed, saying, “Greetings, martle.  You and your cousins are known to me and my folk.  I welcome you here if you come without harm in your mind.”  I was struck that Drammar knew the reference, “you and your cousins”.  Most do not understand that we, martles, refer to ourselves in this way.  We are cousins to each martle and each of them to us, even to our ancestors.

I could see from Drammar’s bearing, firm but polite, that this heolas was a Protector, one of those those known as Lesaneth.

“I come here to seek shelter and, in return, I would bring what aid I might to you and the this place that you Protect, if you are indeed a follower of Lesaneth.”  It was the proper greeting, and I could see that Drammar recognized it as such.

“I am Drammar.  Come and rest from your travels.  This land is protected from any that might do them harm.”

As Drammar finished speaking I heard a sharp sound of barks and squeals –  clearly the sound of goblins, no doubt those that had been following me. There were a number of goblin voices, and they were close.

Drammar did not have time to lead us to a safe place before a band of perhaps a dozen goblins appeared, slouching their way out from behind an outcropping of the mountainside.

I prepared to defend myself, but before I could do anything Drammar, with face cold and furious, moved forward to stand between me and these barbaric creatures.  Drammar faced the goblin leader and called out clearly and with unmistakable threat, “I have not given you permission to enter Suong Mara. I give you warning.”

The lead goblin hesitated, seeming to assess the situation.  As vile as these creatures are, they are surprisingly rational when it comes to war and fighting and do not often make mistakes.  After its momentary calculation, it clearly arrived at a decision. He screeched a loud, intimidating reply as he and his cohort, lunged at us.

I reached for my knife, but before I could touch it, I heard a soft incantation from Drammar, whose long, sand-brown cloak billowed up and swept back as a swirl of sand and dirt rose up from the ground in front.  A wall of earth suddenly spun before us, higher than our heads and as wide as the band of goblins that faced us. It sounded as if a caravan of wagons was crashing down a ravine.

The last thing I saw of the goblins before they were wholly consumed by this powerful storm was the look of shock on their faces.  Then, with one more spoken word and a pushing motion, Drammar sent the storm careening into the goblins, carrying them far back into the ravine from which they had appeared.

The wind dissipated, and Drammar’s cloak settled into stillness.  We both listened for a minute and heard the sound of many goblin feet heading down the mountain away from Suong Mara.

It was the first time I had witnessed the fury of a Lesaneth protecting their land, though it would not be the last.

Drammar turned to look at me.  “Are you hungry?”

* The current year is SP~5,019.

Character Advancement

Character Advancement is the process of making your character more powerful using the Essence you have earned in previous adventures. By now, your character probably has some experience: maybe they beat up some baddies, or thwarted an assassination attempt on Mayor Sympriono, or recovered a lost artifact.  Whatever it was, if they made it out alive your Moderator probably ended the session by letting you know that you earned yourself some Essence. (Check out our prior blog about Essence.)  In this blog we’ll tell you exactly what you can do with Essence and how to do it.

The Beyonder Builder: Character Advancement

You have two main options for advancing your character: you can use our online system, or do it by hand.  In either case, you can find information about Character Advancement in Beyonder: The Science of the Six, page 96.  If you are going to use our online system, you will want to log on to the Builder page before getting started. (If you created your character using one of our many online CharGen methods you already have access to the Builder; if not, it’s easy to register.)

Let’s look at the four ways you can spend Essence to make your character better by improving:

  1. Talents (and receive Proficiencies every 3 Ranks after the first)
  2. Defense Ratings (Inner, Outer, or Ethereal. Combat Defense increases with Outer Defense)
  3. Barriers: Overcome a Barrier in a new Energy or increase Barrier in an Energy you have already overcome (and receive Barrier Ability, too)
  4. Powers: Invent a Power, Learn a Power that has already been invented, or modify a Power that you already know. Also, for any Power you already have you can develop a Mastery for that Power, which allows you to specialize it in certain ways (we’ll talk more about that in a later blog).

This seems simple, but there are a lot of options within each category.  There are 15 Talents to choose from, 3 Defense Ratings, 6 Energies, and an almost infinite number of Powers (we have provided you with about 480 to start you off).

With all of these options, how are you going to keep track of it all?

If you use our online builder it’s easy, especially if you use a tablet or computer to view your character sheet rather than printing it out.  First, your Moderator needs to send you an invite to be a player in their campaign. Once you accept, they can grant your PC Essence after each adventure.  Look at the icons at the top of your character sheet; the one that looks like a stock market growth graph is the Character Advancement button. This will take you to a form where you can allocate your Essence. Just move the sliders, click submit, and you’re good to go!  If you have questions, click on “View Instructions” and you’ll see an easy guide for the Character Advancement process.

Important: Remember that any unused Essence will be wasted, so make sure to allocate it all, even if it does not reach the next benchmark.  You will be able to keep adding to it after your next adventure.

You Can Also Keep Track by Hand: You may prefer to do things by hand by hand, on a piece of paper.  You can do this in either of two ways. First, you might want to build the initial version of the Character using the Beyonder online system.  If so, then you can print out the Character sheet from the online system and that includes two pages at the end that you can use for Character Advancement.

If you just want to do everything by hand, then you can print out the PDF Character Sheet and work from that.  You’ll find the PDF Character Sheet in the “Game Aids” section of the online Builder system, under the “All My Stuff” tab.

There are spaces on the character sheets for each of the four main things you can improve: Talents, DRs, Barriers, and Powers. There are boxes in each section to keep track of Essence you have spent.  For example, let’s say you have Rank 4 in the Athletics Talent. In order to reach Rank 5 you must spent 15 Essence (3x the target Rank). Each time you allocate some Essence to this Talent, you check off the appropriate number of boxes next to that Talent. Once you have reached the target number, you can update the appropriate part of your character sheet and erase the section on Character Advancement to clear room for another ability.

After you have done this one or two times it will become second nature. It’s especially easy to  keep track of unfinished abilities that need to be topped off. So – go try it out, and have fun!  

The Martles of Ethem

By Javeer Akcher: Senior Physical Investigator for the Guild Energetic Research Collective (GERC)

Martles, of course, wander the oceans of our planet, Ethem.  It is not as well known they they also roam the Tamarran Continent as well as (according to rumor) beyond the reaches of Tamarra.

Martles do not found cities or kingdoms because they spend much of their lives traveling and exploring the world. They do have homelands on Ethem where they are born and where they return periodically for large gatherings of their kind.  It is said that there are four martle homelands on or near the Tamarran Continent:

Allassa Marren, in The Icy Wastes: Deep beneath the surface of the Icy Wastes lies a vast network of tunnels.  It is said that it extends far beyond the borders of the Tamarran Continent, an expanse that is so large that even martles rarely travel it all.  It is said among martles that “It takes five lives to know the tunnels of the ‘waste land’”. Some martles, a very few, have made it their life’s quest to explore and understand all of these tunnels.

Vashaff, in The Eastern Coastline Volcanoes: Six major volcanoes line the eastern coast of Tamarra where it meets the Kellith Sea.  They run from the Zwingel Territories of the zweyjen along the southern coast of the continent to the Sea-Looking States, which lie off the eastern coast.  There are martle enclaves scattered among the many firths and caverns found where the Eastern Mountains meet the rough ocean waters.

Tooleesa Arroon, in the Long Coral Reef: The Long Coral Reef is hundreds of miles long, running north to south through the Lossolla Sea off the western coast of Tamarra. The martles have long had a homeland in the northern parts of this reef.  Over many centuries they have developed a strong racial bond with the various kamari enclaves that live here in these forested lands that line the western coast.

Ka Gra Kanna, in The Rock Islands: These islands are located in the ocean in the far north of Tamarra, a little over 300 miles north of the Land of Hetherall and almost 200 miles below the southern coast of the Icy Wastes.  The martles and the Ice Giants that live there have, over many centuries, become strong allies and often good friends. They are known to help each other in time of need.

It is interesting to note that martles have eidetic memory: their minds capture everything that happens to them and around them as they travel the world.  For this reason they are sought out as “witnesses” to history and as guides to help travelers find their way on their journeys.

Martles can live very long lives; there are some who are believed to have lived as long as six or seven hundred years or more.  One of my great friends, the martle named Aktil Na Baylarassa, is no exception. Born in SP~4,682, he is one of the oldest martles in the world.  He can remember when the Regma Worms rose out of the sea to attack Eldrim city and when the Nulentians arrived on the shores of Tamarra to launch their second invasion of our Continent. He was even there during the bloody Wars of Sorcery.

If you are ever fortunate enough to meet a martle in your life’s travels, it would be wise to make their acquaintance.  If the opportunity presents itself, befriend them. If it should happen that the martle you meet is Aktil Na Baylarassa, please give him greetings from his loyal friend Javeer.

The essence of Essence

The last few blogs have described ways to create new characters in Beyonder.  After creating a character, maybe you joined up with a few others and went on an adventure:  fought some monsters, made some new friends, saved a lost child. Maybe you returned a treasure to a rich patron.  Whatever you did, you must have grown, and your Moderator probably awarded you Essence at the end of the adventure.  But what is Essence and how do you use it?

Inside the Beyonderverse, Essence is a sort of concentrated form of the Six Energies.  Essence builds up in everyone as they go about their lives: it’s generated by everything from normal daily activities to using Talents to channeling Powers.  Just as in our world, you become better and stronger by practicing something. Most people have little or no control over how their Essence is distributed; wherever it is applied, it stays.  If a player uses the Melee Combat Talent they get better at Melee Combat. A player who uses the Deception Talent gets better at that. But you are not most people.  You are one of the rare few who was born a Channel.  Your connection with the Energies gives you the ability to control how the Essence flows.  As a result, you can actively direct how you grow.

As a player, you use Essence to make a character more powerful in areas you choose.

You can gain new abilities, like learning a new Power or overcoming a Barrier in a new Energy.  You can also improve abilities you already have, including your Talents or Defense Ratings. On an average adventure your PC will earn 10 Essence to put toward Character Advancement, plus or minus a few depending on how challenging the adventure was for you and your allies.  You can allocate that Essence to a number of different areas, although you must spread it out some.

Generally you can spend no more than 4 Essence on any one aspect of your character at a time.  You must allocate all of your Essence before your next adventure.  Any unused Essence is lost.  This means that most of the time you can only partially upgrade something.  The character sheet has checkboxes to help you keep track of how much Essence has already been spent.  Once the right number of boxes are filled, you have completed this next step in building your character.

Chapter 5 of Science of the Six has a ton of options for what you can buy with your Essence. We have even created an online utility to help automate the process  – but that will have to wait for another blog.  Until then, start checking off some boxes and using all your Essence!