From the ancient arts of the Verbena and the Dreamspeakers to the cutting edge technomagic of the Virtual Adepts and the Progenitors, mages have fought a battle to survive, enlighten minds and shape reality. The Fall and the technological advancements of the 21st century have rearranged the pieces of an ancient game.

Mage Timeline

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  • 1990 - Baba Yaga (ancient Nosferatu) wakes up.
  • 1997 - The 59th Council is opened but no one shows.
  • The Fall
  • 1999 - The Cult of Ecstasy deliver a widely heretical prophesy. They offer sanctuary to any Council mage in their Horizon realm.
  • 2000 - The Fall.
    • The Reconciliation War begins.
  • 2002 - Silent Thursday April 14, 2002 - The internet crashes and with it, Digital Web. Virtual Adepts are nearly destroyed in the crash.
  • 2003 - Beginning of Pax Horizon.
  • 2006 - Sleepers successfully create a link between human nervous tissue and computer circuitry. Etherite, Virtual Adept and Iteration X all take credit for this discovery.
  • 2005 - Checkmate Offensive begins.
  • 2007 - The Lonely War begins in Asia
  • 2011 - The patent for the Neurolink went to the Triad company and made it the single largest Biotech company in the world.
  • 2012 - May 17th Authocthonia is taken over by a Marauder and ceases to maintain a consistent position with in the time/space continuium.
  • 2013 - End of Pax Horizon. Horizon is launched into the Deep Umbra never to be heard from again.
  • 2015 - Checkmate Offensive ends with the self-destruction of Doisstep. The remains of Doisstep are scattered across the Tellurian.
  • 2016 - Neurolink technology finds it's way into almost every major facet of human interface.
  • 2017 - Kazuma Yoshikuni with the Pure Hearted 7 enters Yama. Yoshikuni returns one month later, seemingly purified but with out his seven pure hearted Brothers.
    • The Lonely War ends.
    • Authocthonia is crippled by Barabbi worm.
    • The Cult of Ecstasy emerge from Eden.
    • Convocation of Twin Falls - Reconciliation War ends.
  • 2021 - Althea Jones puts her call out to the remaining Traditions.
  • 2022 - The First Council. The Cabal of Ashes Forms.
  • 2023 - The keystone of Horizon is found by the ES Ariel.
    • The Transfer Point is re-discovered by the Virtual Adepts.
  • 2025 - The Phoenix Nest is created from the key stone of Horizon.
  • 2027 - Sprinters Game begins on March 1st and ends April 1.

Faction Info

The Traditions

The Traditions exist to unify users of magic under a common banner to protect reality (particularly those parts of reality that are magical) against the growing disbelief of the modern world, the spreading dominance of the Technocracy, and the predations of unstable mages such as Marauders and Nephandi.


Each of the Traditions are largely independent organizations unified by a broadly accepted paradigm for practicing magic. Each Tradition appoints one representative (usually one of the highest masters of that Tradition) to a seat on the Council of Nine, the highest authority of the alliance. Each seat on the Council represents one of the nine Spheres of magic, and each Tradition is thus necessarily specialized (usually through use of a suitable paradigm) in that sphere of magic. Historically, there have not always been nine traditions. Periods where the Traditions have had a vacant seat have usually been associated with times of relative weakness.

The Council has little say in the day-to-day operation of the Nine Traditions as a whole. Each Tradition has its own rules for recruitment, apprenticeship, and promotion, and the Council does not interfere with these. Instead, the Council directs the overall course of the Traditions, negotiating broad strategies to uphold Tradition ideals. They are also responsible for arbitrating inter-Tradition conflicts when they occur, and act as the highest court of the Traditions. It has been generally accepted practice that only the Council can authorize "Gilgul" (destruction of the avatar), the harshest form of punishment a mage can suffer.

That is.. until The Fall happened.

The Fall and the panic that followed, changed the whole board, shuffling established Traditions and setting old Masters against one another. The Council of Nine, if indeed it even still exists wields no effective power, and agreements and alliances between the Traditions themselves are rooted more in custom and history than any enforcable bond. Many localities have even gone so far as to establish local Councils to act as something of a proxy in the absence of any true leadership. Faction blamed faction. The line between enemies and friends became blurred as one Master or another played his or her trump until nearly everyone was dead. This struggle, commonly known as the Reconciliation, took place in the 20 years after the Fall. The end result of the Reconciliation was the destruction of nearly all the Chantries, Constructs and Labyrinths and the death of the old Masters. With the old Masters gone, it fell upon the 'apprentices' shoulders to pick up the pieces.

The Traditions Are:

The Technocratic Union


The Technocratic Union (or Technocracy) is a world-wide conglomeration that employs a technological paradigm to pursue an agenda promoting safety over freedom. The Technocracy controls almost all scientific research with an eye to maintaining control, and safety, doling out advances only as they are deemed safe for sleeper consumption. It claims amongst the lower echelons of its membership to pursue an agenda opposed to superstition and faith-based belief systems. Furthermore, it claims to champion science while rejecting any innovation not approved by its own leadership. In this way, its agenda prevents effective criticism as it can always claim its ideological opponents are themselves against the benefits of science, many of which the Technocracy itself opposes while claiming to uphold.

In place of mysticism, the Technocracy uses Enlightened Science as its way of describing magical phenomena. Its current tools are the advancement of scientific methods and principles (along with the technology this produces), the spread of financial corporate market-forces, and the application of political/corporate power. While many Technocrats (being members of the Technocracy rather than pawns controlled by it) use magic, few accept that their actions are anything other than the successful application of a little-known scientific principle.

Not all Technocrats are mages (roughly one in ten can use true Enlightened Science in the form of reality-altering magic, and perhaps as many as half can use simple supernatural abilities such as psychic powers), and what defines a Technocrat is more a matter of the absolute belief in science, commerce, and politics as the foundations of a Utopian worldview. As a scientific meritocracy, however, the Technocracy's highest ranks are occupied entirely by mages. In addition to using Enlightened Science, the Technocracy makes use of hypertech, or technology that is not yet accepted by the Masses and is therefore subject to Paradox.

A central aspect of the Technocracy's mission is to define the rules by which reality operates, and their definitions (as a matter of principle) abhor the idea of other influences on consensual reality. Individuals who violate the rules laid down by their scientists are labeled Reality Deviants, because they are both exceptions of the rules and defy consensual reality. Because of its strong stance against reality deviancy, the Technocracy is essentially at war with all supernatural beings in the World of Darkness, including vampires, werewolves, and other mages. Prior to The Fall, the Technocracy had far more success in proving to the Masses that supernatural beings did not exist rather than eliminating them.

The Union was nearly destroyed during the Fall. The loss of the global technological and economic infrastructure lead to a decade long interruption of Technocratic solidarity. The fighting during the Reconciliation further weakened the Union, and the once mighty juggernaut of Stasis fell into chaotic, isolated pieces scattered across the Tellurian.

To add insult to injury, the Sleepers now have hard evidence that they have been lied to, and they have begun to ask serious questions. Questions about reality itself and, perhaps more pertinently, who was responsible for the Fall. In short, the Union lost control of the consensus.

The Union has since reformed and is making an other bid for Ascension.

The Conventions:

  • Iteration X
  • New World Order
  • Progenitors
  • Syndicate
  • System Operators (Void Eningeers)

The Nephandi


The Nephandi are a group of mages dedicated broadly to spreading corruption, decay, and discord. When taking the roots of modern-day Nephandi into account, they are collectively one of the oldest factions of mages still active today.

A Nephandus (singular) is an Awakened agent of the cosmological force of Entropy, and represents the antithesis to anything other mages would try to achieve. Despite this unifying aspect of their calling, Nephandi can be motivated by a wide variety of interests. Some seek to destroy all of reality in an effort to assert their power over the ultimate constraint every mage faces. Others seek power that they consider impossible to reach otherwise, and do so by the systematic destruction of everything in their path. Yet others corrupt and destroy out of religious zeal. Many possess all three motivations to varying degrees. Some more tragic mages become a Nephandus through trickery, despair or moral frailty. The crucial factor that makes them all Nephandi is, that they have turned their backs on the ideals of Ascension.

Due to the fractured nature of Nephandic beliefs and how varied they can be, the Nephandi only truly worked together on a few rare occasions. When one refers to a 'massive Nephandic move' they are generally only talking about a sect of the damned who coordinated a large blow. After The Fall, the fallen Magi have had to re-evaluate their ideas and beliefs. True to nature, barabbi whos avatars are twisted by Cauling seek to tear Ascension down and bring the world into Oblivion. The Fall was a start, but it wasn't the end result. The fact that the world almost ended was something of an inspiration and a morale blow to these vile creatures.

The Nephandi in truth took the brunt of the slaughter during The Fall. Some of the Malfeans were fine with it, but the majority of the Nephandi serve the Outsiders or the Hells, both of whom are notorious autocrats who had their very carefully laid, centuries old plans completely eradicated in one fell swoop. The Patrons regarded the Fall as a grievous act of disobedience on the part of their servants. Some Patrons placed their servants on the front lines to protect themselves from the onslaught of Council and Union Masters who were opportunistically looking for a solution to age old conspiracies and vendettas. Labyrinths were gutted and sunk back into the earth or launched back at the distant stars. Those Nephandi who survived the Reconciliation were judged harshly, and new recruits were selected to rebuild and set the Patrons paths in motion once more.

The Mauraders


Marauders are mages who have been so consumed by Paradox and their own Paradigm that they have become pure forces of Dynamism. If the Marauders can be said to seek anything it is change for change's sake. More of a breed than a faction the Mad Ones they have existed as long as Mages have existed.

Marauders were considered dangerous previous to the Fall because they had so few limits or scruples. In the post-Fall world, Marauders arguably pose a greater threat to Reality than the Nephandi do. While the Nephandi are content to slowly corrupt Reality the Marauders refusal to 'play by the rules' or even acknowledge them makes them dangerous foes to encounter. Every time a Marauders uses his Paradox twisted Art he re-injures the fractured Consensus, threatening to domino into an other Fall.

Marauders are not player characters on Dark Metal. Player characters who become Marauders become NPCs.