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Compendium
Welcome to the land of Ourania - a place of beastly magic, history and subterfuge recently marred by war and grief. We are a fantasy-driven Canine and Equine play-by-post roleplay game for mature members ages 16 and up, with an emphasis on heavy lore and customizable magics. This compendium is designed to assist in learning all about the site's game mechanics, history, member expectations and more. Before you register an account with us, we urge you to read through the links below over an appropriate period of time in order to get a firm grasp of what we do and how we do it. If at any point in time you have questions, be sure to ask in our Discord. Ourania awaits you!
Here at Ourania, our goal is to make the site as fun as possible while being as fair as possible. We ask that you make efforts to familiarize yourself with the site rules so that all members can enjoy themselves while avoiding any potential violations. Failure to comply with the site rules can put your membership with us at risk. If at any point you feel uncomfortable with something on-site, we encourage you to reach out to a member of Staff for resolution. Thank you for your cooperation!


GENERAL RULES  –  POSTING & ACTIVITY  –  CHARACTERS  –  BATTLING & VIOLENCE



General Rules

1. Enjoy your writing!
Our primary goal is for you to have a fun, interactive and creative place where you can enjoy your writing. We want the site to not only be a community of positivity, but also solidarity and encouragement for one another in terms of growing with our characters.

2. Respect your fellow members.
Empathy first, reaction second. Be respectful and cordial to your fellow players, including members of the Staff Team. Approach disagreement with an open mind and from a place of kindness. OOC drama of any kind is highly frowned upon and won’t be tolerated in any capacity, and the Staff Team reserves any and all right to dismiss any member who cannot comply with this rule.

3. Manage yourself appropriately.
As a member of Ourania, you are responsible for your own self-management. This means that the Staff Team will make all efforts to avoid mini-modding and instead leave member management up to the players. This includes magic use, rule enforcement, etc. Be mature, be thoughtful, and play within your means. We don’t appreciate the constant pushing of envelopes or attempts to find loopholes. Repeat offenders of this rule will be excused from the site.

4. All players must be at least 16 years old.
Ourania is COPPA Compliant, meaning that any member under the age of 13 cannot register on our forum. However, in an effort to foster a mature community, players under the age of 16 will not be accepted, no exceptions. Mature content will be present but regulated. Thank you for your understanding!

5. Know the ins and outs of forum roleplay.
We want our players to have previous forum roleplay experience. This includes a firm grasp on general literacy, grammar, and spelling, without the use of chat-speak or unnecessarily ‘flowery’ language. We understand there’s always room for improvement, but we’d rather not be your first rodeo.

6. No OOC to IC or vice versa.
Much like Vegas, what happens In Character stays in character. This goes for Out of Character too; there should be no transference.

7. No Metaplay, Powerplay or Godmoding.
Metaplay (the act of your character gaining knowledge without having roleplayed it) is never allowed, save for specific listed instances on our Setting page. Powerplay (controlling another person’s character with your own writing) is off limits unless you have permission from that member to do so. Godmoding (unrealistic advantages, invincibility, etc for your character) is not allowed. Please refer to Rule #3 about self-management.



Posting & Activity

1. Quality over Quantity.
While Ourania has no word count or sentence requirement, we do require Quality. This means no one-liners or dialogue-only posts, but we are understanding of days where you aren’t able to churn out several paragraphs. Mirror posting (mimicking the length of your roleplay partner’s posts) is highly encouraged to prevent unbalanced threads.

2. We are rated a 3-1-3 on the RPG Rating Scale.
This means that mature language, violence and sexual content is permitted, with some limitations. Sexual/Mature content should be clearly flagged and marked, with sexual encounters fading to black or avoiding detail. When in doubt, refer to General Rule #2 and consult with those whom you are writing with. Remember, you will likely be writing with minors who are 18 years or younger!

3. All images, artwork and coding should be appropriately credited.
Avatars, postscripts and profile images should either be yours for sole use, or clearly credited. All stock images used should either be creative commons, credited and/or purchased appropriately, or of your own creation. Don’t borrow or use coding without express permission.

4. Your activity dictates your Character Limit.
You are free to have as many characters as you choose so long as all of the accounts exhibit some level of IC activity. Should you be found with an excessive number of inactive accounts, you may be asked to save their profiles and remove them until you intend to play them again.

5. One character per account.
Players should only have one character per account. This means that when you want to make a new character (or an OOC account) you’ll register for a new one. The account switcher feature located in the User CP makes it easy to move from one account to the next during your posting ventures.

6. Postscripts and post art are allowed.
All are welcome to decorate their posts how they please, so long as the text colors and sizes are legible, and any postscripts or images do not stretch the boards or contain mature content.

7. Profiles should be kept simple.
Please refrain from using any coding beyond text styling or basic divs for your profiles. We want profiles to be simple, concise, and easy for all members to read.

8. Ourania operates on double-time.
This means that time on Ourania passes twice as fast as it does in real life. 7 real days equals 14 Ouranian days, and so on. Each season will last 45 days, which means an entire year in Ourania will have taken place in 6 months ooc time.

9. Liquid threading is a-okay.
You are free to be in as many threads with the same character as you can handle. We only ask that you self-manage and maintain a linear timeline, and actively avoid situations where your character posts elsewhere in order to avoid a confrontation.

10. Post comings are prohibited.
Players cannot save their place in a thread with a ‘post coming’. All in-character replies must be posted in full.



Characters

1. Character appearances are entirely open!
Your character (equine or canine) may have any appearance you wish. Go nuts! We only ask that they must closely resemble whatever root species they are: horses must be mostly horse, canines must be mostly canine. Wings, horns, mutations, exotic colors and all things in between are welcome. Be sure to read the Character Guide for more in-depth information.

2. Natural accessories are good; human-made items are bad.
Players are free to be creative with natural adornments and accessories such as vines and other flora, crystals, bones, pelts and the like. However, anything “human-made” (swords, armor, intricate jewelry, etc) are prohibited unless earned through in-character achievement.

3. ‘Dangerous’ appearances should be passive.
Should your character design include a potentially dangerous feature (quills, venomous bite, flaming hair, etc), you are allowed to use it offensively or defensively against other characters, but any appearance-related magic should be kept relatively passive. Don’t go running around harassing others with your scorpion tail, for instance. ONE passive magic pertaining to your character's appearance can be activated in the appropriate magic slot. Play nice, play fair, and remember not to powerplay or godmode.

4. We are LGBT+ friendly!
Ourania welcomes all members and characters with LGBT+ backgrounds. Should your character be trans, we just ask that you reflect on their profiles which gender they identify with, and what their birth-sex was for future reproductive purposes. We are always open to suggestions and dialogue on how to better improve our inclusivity.

5. All characters on Ourania are Immortal by default.
Once a character reaches maturity, they become Immortal. Immortality in Ourania means that mature characters will not age (for the most part; if you’d like them to become grey, by all means) and are impervious to most ailments and superficial injuries. More serious injuries - like those stricken during battle, or perhaps poisoning - will still affect them, though they are rarely lethal and the character can overcome it in a relatively short period of time. They may still fall victim to: scarring, beheadings, heart stabbings/removals, certain onsite events and complete body obliterations.

6. Death is not always the end.
Given the site’s penchant for the mystique, if a character well and truly dies it isn’t necessarily the end. While resurrection magic is difficult to come by, it does exist and can be obtained. That being said, resurrection is and always will be a risk that can have dire consequences, to both the character and the site. Use caution! Note: Resurrection Magic is currently unavailable but will be introduced through gameplay.

7. All characters (canine & equine) reach sexual maturity at 3 (18) years old.
Males and females of both species reach reproductive age at 3, and at that point will maintain that physique (unless aged by magic or player choice).

8. Ourania does not support cross-breeding.
While this might change in the future based on member feedback, the site currently does not support cross-breeding between the species. However, this does not apply to familial adoptions!

9. Pups and Foals age normally.
As the site runs on double-time, all pups and foals will age normally until they reach maturity. They will be both mortal and vulnerable for the beginning stages of life, and will need to be taught continuously as they grow. Abandoned or lone pups and foals are likely to perish unless they are adopted and cared for. While they are still young, offspring may be played on the parents’ accounts but once they become more independent, they should have their own account.

10. Breeding and sexual content must fade to black.
Please employ “fade to black”, clearly mark the thread as ‘Mature’, and avoid an overabundance of detail when it comes to sexual content. If you absolutely must write this out, take it off-site as it won't be allowable on-site.

11. Use “Aura Weaving” for non-sexual breeding.
For those seeking a magical alternative to breeding, characters can “weave” the magic of their Auras/Spirits together. This weaving will produce a pregnancy much the same as regular ol’ copulation, including for same-sex couples. Should the couple both be males, they’ll need to find a female surrogate in which to place their woven magic for the pregnancy to take. Should a surrogate go inactive before giving birth, you are welcome to message Staff and have the pregnancy moved to another active character.

12. Breeding for pregnancy takes place twice a year.
To avoid an overabundance of babies, Ourania has two events or seasons per IC year in which breeding will produce a pregnancy. With double time, that offers 4 total opportunities per OOC year for pups and foals. Gestation periods last 45 OOC days, or 1 IC season.

13. Births are a mixture of Staff & Member involvement.
To give an element of surprise, when your character’s due date looms a member of the Staff Team will provide details as to how many pups or foals are expected, and what genders. Ourania incorporates minor genetic details, which will also be provided to you. Beyond that, everything else is up to you! If you want to have complete control over all elements of the offspring, you’ll need to purchase the NAME item from the shop.



Battling & Violence

1. Violence can, and will, happen.
Despite our warm OOC community, Ourania has an in-character history steeped in violence. Your characters will likely encounter some form of violence during their time here, and we ask members to be open to this. If you don’t like to participate in battles or confronting violent characters, Ourania might not be the best place for you to write.

2. No permission needed to be violent… with caveats.
You are not required to obtain permission prior to issuing a challenge or to attempt a maiming or lethal maneuver. However, there needs to be a justifiable in-character reason for the behavior: this means rooted personality, revenge, etc. That being said, if the violence involves rape we do require that you consult the members involved beforehand so as to tread lightly and respectfully. Rape is a tender subject for some, and we don’t want them to be involuntarily triggered. As always, mature details must be kept to a minimum.

3. Violence & fights can occur anywhere, anytime, with anyone.
Disputes (anything from brief tussles to dominance displays to death matches) can take place in any of the in-character forums of Ourania, excluding Land challenges. Land challenges must be issued at the land/forum in question. Generally battles will be 1 vs 1, but interference is always possible. Those that interfere run the risk of consequence from outside parties. Land or Rank challenges should always be 1 vs 1 for fairness.

4. You can try to run, you can try to hide.
If your character decides they don’t want to partake in a certain violent squabble, they have the option to concede or run. Keep in mind, your opponent then has the right to pursue you even if it’s across multiple forums over a period of time. In order for an escape to be successful, a member of the Staff Team will roll a 6-sided dice; 1, 3, 5 and 6 deem a successful escape, while 2 and 4 indicate your character has been run down and/or caught by their pursuer(s), and they must then either partake in the fight or verbally forfeit.

5. Magic is always on the table.
Given Ourania’s propensity for magic of all kinds, magic is always allowed during violence and sanctioned battles. That being said, continual magic use during a battle will consequently exhaust your character no matter their experience. Using magic is taxing, and should be reflected as such. If you aren’t clearly marking adequate magic weakness, Staff reserve the right to intervene and, in some instances, mark you for immediate forfeiture/loss.

6. All battles are turn-based.
No matter the length of the battle, all fights should be turn-based and continue with a clear posting order until a winner is clear. During your turn, you are allowed (1) attack per paragraph. Using magic offensively constitutes an attack. Only 2 dodges per character per battle. Battle posts should not exceed 500 words to prevent wordy or “bloated” fight posts. All attacks and defensive motions should be clearly written so as to prevent any confusion. Absolutely no powerplaying or godmoding is allowed, and offenders of this may be marked for forfeiture.

7. All battles have a 48 hour time limit.
No matter the battle type, should you fail to respond to your opponent within 48 hours (as indicated by post timestamps) you automatically forfeit the fight and accept all consequences associated with it. Extensions must be Staff-approved, and will depend solely on circumstance. Absence notices posted after the timestamp of the challenge won’t be accepted or considered for extension.

8. Winner, winner, chicken dinner!
Winners of a battle are decided using one of the following methods: A) your character exhausts him or herself during battle and concedes, B) you and your opponent settle on a turn limit (# of posts each) and then enlist a judge to read the fight and select a winner upon completing the turns, or C) discuss and determine a winner with your opponent towards the end of the fight.

9. Losing is not a bad thing!
Our goal is to buck the competitive trend running rampant through animal rpg’s, so we are putting a clear emphasis on the character development and storytelling in battles. The emphasis of a battle is not to win, but rather to develop: this means exploring all options and being open to the concept that if your character loses, that could prove more fun and useful rather than had they won. Losing opens up all sorts of windows for plot development and storytelling. It's about the journey and about how those losses impact the nations and characters. Loss is as meaningful as victory, sometimes even more. Not to mention, there are boons for both winning AND losing on Ourania!

10. Wars and sieges are possible.
Should a group of characters rally together to lay siege to a kingdom or hunt a single character (or characters) down, all time limits and posting orders will apply. Sieges should be pre-planned in-character via group meeting or discussion so as to adhere to rules regarding Metaplay (see General rule #7).

11. Use good sense with rescues.
Common sense should be employed with any rescue attempts. Unless your character has solid justification for being available to attempt and rescue another character from harm, they should have no business swooping in.