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Author Topic: Official MW Lore: The Mage Wars Accords  (Read 1632 times)

Sabrath_Kell

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Official MW Lore: The Mage Wars Accords
« on: January 04, 2016, 01:22:38 PM »
Hey guys! Thought we would start the year off right with a closer look at the driving force behind all our arena battles — the Mage Wars Accords.

What are the Mage Wars Accords?
In short, they’re why Mages enter the Arena to fight.



For the longer story, read on!

Since the Age of Catastrophe, the lands of Etheria suffered under wave after wave of conflict, battle and chaos, both magic and military. Following the epic, multi-national defeat of Adramelech and his demonic forces over a half millennia ago, there was little appetite for future conflict. General Mereveran, the Ivarium leader who had forged the Grand Alliance and had brought the nations together, put forward the idea of a framework of mage champions who could fight on behalf of the nations, sparing future generations the death and destruction that comes with warfare.
 
That idea ultimately became the Mage Wars Accords, and developed into a system of Mage based arena combats. Since their formal institution, most nations have come to rely on the Mage Wars Accords and Mage combats as critical for maintaining stability and order across Etheria.

How Does it Work?
Simply, Mages enter an Arena for magical combat. The winning side represents a victory for a nation, an ideal, or a dispute.

This simple formula has allowed nations to save lives and treasure, no longer forcing nations to field and fund military forces, except in the case of true external threat (::cough Blood Wave Invasion ::cough:: ). As a result, army sizes have been largely decreased (except in Ivarium and the Blood Wave), and the threat of day-to-day destruction has been mitigated for farmers and common folk.

In addition, the system of arena combat has created celebrities, heroes and faces both famous and infamous. It is a marriage of socio-political strategy with a highly visible and compelling system of sport and entertainment. People respond to heroes, and love to hate their heroes’ rivals. For most people in Etheria, particularly in Westlock where the arena system is most developed, this is simply the way things are. After 500 years (some 25 generations) it’s baked into the fabric of society. Stories of life before the Accords are usually filled with tales of destruction and demonkind.

In truth, the arena system has also become a highly lucrative system. A large portion of coin generated by arena matches is taken by the Arena Conclave, which is then parsed out to the nations who have signed on to the Accords, with larger percentages given to those who are participating, hosting the event, etc. As more and more factions join in, and more and more fights are put on even as exhibitions its become more and more profitable. Some arena personalities — like Tellas Vane for example — are hugely popular, and matches that feature him, draw large crowds, and expensive seats.

How is it Governed?
To oversee the matches and Mages, and to ensure fairness and propriety are maintained, there is an Arena Conclave. Each nation provides a council member to sit on this regulatory body. This Conclave is the administrative body that organizes matches, draws the terms officially, debate the legality of a match, and sanction cases presented by those who want to take matters into the Arena. They see to the upkeep of official arenas, collect “membership dues” from independent or non-National members who sign on to the Accords, and manage all proceeds from ticket admission and wagers. They are technically an official body of government.

Most matches take place in specially constructed Arenas, which are latticed with deep-rooted magics for the protection of the audience, and the safety of the participants. For example, the walls of the Arena are always layered in two-way illusions, such that they always seem enormously high from within, but to the audience outside, they see events as if they are “ringside”. The magics of the arena carry spoken words up to the audience, and their applause booms into the pit. Additionally the pit itself magically keeps the spells and effects from spilling into the audience (a very handy piece of magecraft).

The matches are presided over by a Grand Herald, a representative of the Arena Conclave. While in this position of authority, he or she is empowered within the Arena to override magics inside the pit. He may only do this when the Accords have been violated, or if the safety of the audience is in question. The Grand Herald serves as an announcer, commentator, and referee as necessary.



Sanctioned and Unsanctioned Matches
There are two forms of matches, sanctioned and unsanctioned.

Sanctioned matches follow the rules of the Accords, and are governed and monitored by the Arena Conclave and its representatives. Only sanctioned matches can have binding results for nations or organizations represented by the Mages who participate in the duel. For example, a match may be set to arbitrate between two nations who hold claims to a particular piece of land, or property. Or they may be used to settle disputes rather than send armies to field. In any case, such sanctioned matches are designed and drawn up by the Arena Conclave, and are then agreed upon by representatives of the two parties involved, and often, by the participants themselves.

Unsanctioned matches can occur in or outside an arena, by Mages of any nationality or affiliation. In general, they follow traditional Accord rules, and are fought to unconsciousness, not death. They are not presided over by a Grand Herald. These types of matches may occur in the wilderness, on-the-cuff, or in a personal situation between two Mages. These matches are still generally fought until the Rite of Surrender is invoked, but deathmatches do happen, especially when dealing with Dark Mages or shadowy organizations (Arraxian Crown ::cough:: ::cough:: )

Who Can Participate?
In an unsanctioned match, anyone can participate, at their own risk.

For a sanctioned match, participants must be registered with the Arena Conclave. Participants may register for political reasons, competitive/exhibition reasons, or personal reasons. In any event, a roster of official mages who may represent a given nation or organization is maintained by the Conclave. The affiliated nation or organization can decides when or if a mage is ready to participate in a sanctioned match for them. Different nations have their own rules and regulations on who may become their champions.

The Mage Wars Accords also allows for Universities, Academies and Schools of Training to test students officially in the public eye. In cases such as these, the organizations may sign themselves as independent entities, rather than falling under a national banner. (For example, Sistarra Academy in Sortilege is designated as its own independent entity, rather than a representative of Sortilege.) This allowance lets the mage community as a whole grow without having to fear any particular political disputes effecting their teaching. This also allows  “final exams” and major trials for a student to happen in the dynamic environment of an Arena.

Independent Mages also have the right to register personally with the Arena Conclave, so that they may legally engage in honor duels, property disputes, or simply test himself and any other reason he might have. 

Do All Matches Follow The Same Rules?
There are several types and varieties of matches, all with specific goals, set and agreed upon by the Conclave before a sanctioned duel begins. The “standard match” is to knock out or until a participant invokes the Rite of Surrender, whichever happens first. (The Rite of Surrender is a basic, simple incantation which all Mages must know to compete.  It terminates all of the mages ongoing magical effects, unsummons any creatures and, within the magics of The Arena proper, protects the mage from farther harm.)

There are other types of matches, including team battles, battles upon specific or magical terrain, and (rarely) deathmatches.

What If A Nation Or Organization Does Not Follow The Outcome Of A Sanctioned Match?
Failure to live up to the set terms of a sanctioned match could result in the Arena Conclave punishing the affiliated nation or organization, usually by incurring steep fines, or leveraging other nations and organizations to withhold trade or political connections. The Conclave can also decide to remove an individual, organization or nation from the Accords themselves, in which case they would immediately lose all funds associate with arena combat. In extreme situations, the Conclave is also able to rally political, military or magical force against a nation that decides to default on a sanctioned match.

In the 500 years since the Mage Wars Accord has been instituted, this has rarely happened.


A special thanks to Baronzaltor for all his help in preparing this very in-depth discussion.
« Last Edit: January 04, 2016, 01:40:22 PM by Sabrath_Kell »
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Sailor Vulcan

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Re: Official MW Lore: The Mage Wars Accords
« Reply #1 on: January 04, 2016, 01:44:17 PM »
Fascinating! Would have loved to see this presented in story form. Unfortunately most stories don't like to go into the nitty-gritty like that, because it takes a certain kind of skill to pull off without boring the readers.

The Mage Wars universe is looking more and more like a great setting for rational fics.

And now I need to update that short story I wrote to include the rite of surrender.

Great job with this, I love it!
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Boocheck

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Re: Official MW Lore: The Mage Wars Accords
« Reply #2 on: January 04, 2016, 03:02:40 PM »
Excelent stuff!!!
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baronzaltor

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Re: Official MW Lore: The Mage Wars Accords
« Reply #3 on: January 04, 2016, 03:03:11 PM »
Is there a form I can submit for "Assistant Lore Master" badge and big pointy hat?

Sabrath_Kell

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Re: Official MW Lore: The Mage Wars Accords
« Reply #4 on: January 05, 2016, 09:03:48 AM »
Sure! Access to the form only costs 20 banana stickers.  ;)
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Boocheck

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Re: Official MW Lore: The Mage Wars Accords
« Reply #5 on: January 05, 2016, 12:44:01 PM »
Its a Trap! For 25 stickers you can have DeLorean DMC-12!
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ringkichard

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Re: Official MW Lore: The Mage Wars Accords
« Reply #6 on: January 05, 2016, 02:06:38 PM »
Sure! Access to the form only costs 20 banana stickers.  ;)

Don't tempt me.
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baronzaltor

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Re: Official MW Lore: The Mage Wars Accords
« Reply #7 on: January 05, 2016, 02:29:24 PM »
Sure! Access to the form only costs 20 banana stickers.  ;)

Don't tempt me.

We could go in halves for one.