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The "Benverse" Encyclopedia

All my RPG campaigns (and maybe a few other creations) set in the modern era can be seen to exist in a shared universe. This universe is superficially very much like our own, but follows a different timeline with some drastic differences, such as a nuclear explosion in 2003 which resulted in the quarantine of a large area in central Alaska. Oh, and naturally there are all kinds of supernatural entities and infinite parallel universes, and all that, but that goes without saying.

History

When I originally created the games which formed the basis for this universe (New Angel Evolution, Beyond the Bridge, Kin of Cerberos), I did not yet plan to set them in a shared universe. The thought that they could, and should even, exist in the same world only came to me later. This may partially have been due to getting closer acquainted with the comic book worlds of Marvel and DC. A shared universe would make it possible to create crossover stories and would provide a wealth of ready material that could potentially be utilised in future games.

Considerations

As the settings were not originally designed to be compatible, some slight retconning may have to be made. It is likelier, however, to affect my plans for future games more than the material that has been thus far made public.

In many cases I've intentionally refrained from giving exact dates. The events of most games can be considered to take place in a 'floating timeline'. This is largely because of the nature of RPG campaigns, in which there can be considerable differences between game time and real time. Keeping precise track of game time can be cumbersome and often unnecessary. Events that are obviously in the past and whose closeness isn't of importance to current games, such as the events in New Angel Evolution culminating in the Fairbanks nuclear incident, are an exception.

Sources

The material on this page is drawn primarily from the RPG campaigns New Angel Evolution, Kin of Cerberos, Dreams from the Fresh Kills and Beyond the Bridge: The House.

Other sources include (short lived) experiments, such as the H5P blog and the comic Butterfly Paradigms.

Not all concepts or events below have been introduced in my games as of yet. Some come from plans I've made for future games, many of which might never be played. Even so, they've already become a part of this world in my thoughts.

Disclaimers

This is a work of fiction. Any similarity to real persons or events is coincidental.

Like all my RPG material, this work is released under a Creative Commons license, so anyone interested in utilising this material is free to do so. See license information below for terms of use.

This article is a work in progress and entries are subject to change. (Last edited 19 January 2010.)

A

Angel, code name - A human/angel hybrid produced by the U.S. military. After escaping from the military in 1991, he resurfaced in 2003. After a series of bloody murders, he detonated a nuclear device near Fairbanks, Alaska, and appeared to be destroyed in the explosion. The reasons for his rebellion are as of yet unclear. The Primal Surreal could be involved.

Angels - A race of highly evolved, winged humanoids dedicated to protecting life on planet Earth. Occasionally referred to by their eastern name, Deva. Their home is a parallel world which is closely bound to Earth. This world is sometimes called Heaven, but even though a select few may reincarnate as angels, it is not an afterlife. There is no apparent omnipotent 'God' that controls the angels. If such a being exists, it is much too abstract for the human mind to grasp.

Archangels - An elite class of angels. Each is an expert warrior and also has a special responsibility over some aspect of existence.

Asmoday - A ruler of the Goetic demons, a king of Hell.

B

Beyond the Bridge Hotel - A recreation centre near Lake Pahooney in Pahooney Woods. A hotspot for Primal Surreal activity.

Big Bang, the - The event which birthed the present incarnation of the multiverse. The world has gone through many such incarnations. The end of the world is known as the Big Crunch.

Blue Temple Monks - A mysterious organisation responsible for binding Lilith in her human form.

Bodhisattva - An enlightened person or spirit dedicated to helping others.

Bound, Lilith - The human form of the demon Lilith. An Oxford historian.

C

Capullo, Joe - Boss of the Rosati crime family.

D

D'Arbon, Maria - A vampire queen from medieval Brittany, killed by the Gatekeepers in Nowerham in the 18th century, and again in the 21st.

Demon - Generic name for (mostly) evil creatures with origins in another dimension.

Deva - The Sanskrit name for an angel.

Dimension - An informal term for a plane of existence or parallel world. A countless number of different dimensions exist, some quite similar to each other, some utterly alien. Travel between dimensions is often possible by means of magical portals or spells. Some beings have a natural ability to move between parallel worlds.

F

Fairbanks anomaly, the - An impenetrable 'bubble' surrounding an abandoned military base near Fairbanks, Alaska. It was detected soon after the Fairbanks nuclear incident.

Fairbanks incident, the - A nuclear explosion near the outskirts of Fairbanks, Alaska that took place on 18 March 2003 and led to the evacuation and quarantine of a large area of central Alaska.

Faerie Realm, the - A dimension inhabited by many mystical creatures. The Seelie and Unseelie courts battle over its control. Recently invaded by the Kel'ar.

Forgotten Tribe, the - A Native American tribe which lived in the vicinity of Lake Pahooney. The tribe disappeared without a trace in the early 19th century. The word 'Pahooney' is all that is remembered of their culture and language.

G

Gatekeepers, Order of - An organization dedicated to guarding the portals in Nowerham, England.

God - Generic name for various unique and usually extremely powerful beings. Unlike demons, they are usually bound to their home dimension, perhaps even a specific region, and are usually more benevolent, albeit unpredictable. Some gods draw power from belief and worship.

Goetics, the - A race of demons described in the book Goetia. They inhabit the dimension commonly known as 'Hell'.

H

Hoshi Five Points Special Tactics Team (H5P) - A special ops team specialising in supernatural threats. Funded by the UN, but operates independently.

I

Indian, the - A bodhisattva, the spirit of an old Native American healer.

J

Jack - A bodhisattva, a spirit taking the form of an old, grey-haired man.

Jay - An inmate at the Nowerham Gardens Asylum, formerly a scientist. Possibly a powerful shapeshifter.

Jazzman Joe - A New York saxophone player and busker.

K

Kel'ar - A race of humanoid demons from an unknown dimension with a reputation as ruthless killing machines. White scales cover their bodies providing a natural armour. They also have retractable blades in their wrists.

L

Lake Pahooney - See Pahooney Woods.

Lazarus Disease - A condition of yet unknown cause which causes apparently deceased bodies to rise and attack the living. First emerged in northwest America soon after the Fairbanks incident.

Lilith - A demon, Asmoday's mate. Bound in human form by the Blue Temple Monks.

M

Magic - The power to make changes in the world with only the power of one's will, either directly or through the control of other entities, often spirits. Often involves ritual elements which help practitioners direct the force of their wills.

Meadows, J. - A founding member and current leader of the Gatekeepers, although he rarely involved himself directly with the organisation's work. He has lived nearly 300 years thanks to a clockwork heart.

Midnite Burger - The world's leading fast food chain.

MRRV - Mobile Rapid Response Vehicle. An armoured exoskeleton designed for combat in urban environments. Still in early stages of development, though already adopted by a few military and law enforcement forces. H5P has played a crucial role in the development of the vehicle.

Multiverse - A name for the entirety of existence, consisting of an almost infinite number of planes of existence (often called dimensions).

N

New Birchland Manor - The headquarters of the Gatekeepers, built in the 20th century at the site of the original Birchland Manor.

Nowerham - A small town in central England, home of several dimensional portals and ancient holy sites guarded by the Order of Gatekeepers.

O

Other Bedlam, the - No information available.

P

Pahooney Insane Asylum - An institution for allegedly insane Native Americans, located at the current site of the Beyond the Bridge Hotel. Destroyed in a fire in 1912 and never rebuilt.

Pahooney Woods - A wilderness region in north-west U.S., near the Canadian border, centered around Lake Pahooney. Once inhabited by Native American people now referred to as the Forgotten Tribe. Now home to the Beyond the Bridge Hotel recreation centre.

Primal Surreal - A force which causes chaotic, nightmarish experiences, often triggered by extreme emotions of pain, grief and anger. It is the most primitive, wild and unpredictable of all supernatural forces. Origins and exact nature are unknown. Perhaps there could even be a connection to dark energy, which would mean its origins go as far back as the Big Bang or beyond. Concentration of Primal Surreal varies from place to place, with some locations (or persons) being natural hotspots for activity, although all people at some point experience its mildest effect: nightmares.

Project A.D. - A top secret U.S. military project aiming to create a supersoldier using angel DNA. The only produced test subject, code name 'Angel', went out of control and disappeared after the Fairbanks incident. The body of the angel used as the DNA source is currently aboard a satellite in orbit.

R

Reincarnation - Upon death, the soul of a living being reincarnates in a new body. Often this is a being of the same species, but can be something vastly different. Sometimes the reincarnation takes place in a dimension known as an afterlife, but this is usually a temporary state and the soul will reincarnate again.

Room 16 - A room at the Beyond the Bridge Hotel. Often at the centre of strange events.

Rosati family, the - A New York crime family.

S

Shaman, the - A mysterious character seen by some at the Beyond the Bridge Hotel.

Silver Night, Order of the - A secret fraternity of British origin, conducting demonic rituals. The order's goals remain unclear. Headed by Michael Friedle, a powerful British businessman.

V

Vampire - An undead creature whose soul has been replaced by a demonic entity. May only be killed by beheading, fire or by piercing the heart with a wooden weapon. New vampires are created by the exchange of blood between human and vampire.

License

The material on this page is released under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike license. You are granted permission to distribute and modify material, as long as you credit me, Ben B. Bainton, as the original author and distribute it or any derivative works under a similar license.