Celerillion

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Celerillion, also known as the Unfettered Range, is a dimension where dreams and other thoughts can become literal reality. It is also the home of the Tonbrium.

Background[edit | edit source]

Celerillion is a dimension solely of the mind. All objects and creatures are concepts - or constructs - of conception. In the base dimension, the concept of a piece of red fruit is separate from the actual red fruit. Someone can't be nourished by imagining themselves eating an idea.

But inside a realm where there isn't physicality, only mental representations, the concept of a thing and that thing are one and the same. This means that visitors practice exceptionally strict control over their imaginations, lest they accidentally allow the concept of their own existence to be corrupted. Metaphors are particularly dangerous for a visitor to consider, because they invite actual changes. For example, if a dimension walker says they're as cold as ice, they could inadvertently kill themselves by transforming into a literal block of frozen water, and thus succumb to the background existential threat inherent to Celerillion.

In Celerillion, "oricepton" is the art and devotion the tonbrium use to survive and even thrive. Oriception is too complex a devotion to be a single task; instead, it's made up of three component tasks. For example, a tonbrium creating a small keep to shelter from a dream storm is a feat of oriception called conceptual creation. If a foe tells a victim "Don't think about your face melting off," it's a conceptual attack task. And if a dimension walker tries to give themselves wings to fly, it's a task called self-modification.

The dangers of this bizarre plane don't end there, but neither do the wonders. The tonbrium, intelligent creatures who colonized the Unfettered Range long ago, are perhaps Celerillion's most well-known natives. It's almost a certainty that dimension walkers who find their way here will encounter them. Depending on whom you ask, tonbrium should either be avoided at all costs, or be sought out because they now the Unfettered Range like no one else.If one seeks to find amazing creatures like a cerebral husk, a psychic seed, or even a conception jewel, the tonbrium can probably tell a dimension walker where to look. They can also warn a visitor about dangers like dream storms, psychic blots, and much more. But of course, the tonbrium themselves might be the most dangerous threat of all.

Even though the Unfettered Range is a dimension of the pure mind, however, concepts that arise on Earth and similar planes take on physical reality and substance here. Terms like distance, movement, and physical descriptions of all kinds remain relevant in Celerillion - though they're only perceptions, they're also real, even if fleeting. Thus references to distances or measurements are accurate enough, at last until a conscious mind decides to imagine something different .

But that's when things get weird, dangerous, and even lethal for someone not prepared for what's actually going on. Once an unprepared dimension walker realizes that the "up" and "down" are mere concepts that have been translated into the dimension, the wandering mind might next wonder about concepts like "substance" and "alive." More than one dimension walker has thought themselves dead by pondering mortality in this dimension where ideas and reality are one and the same. This is what's known as "existential threat."

Visitors who arrive in a random location in Celerillion see what seems to be an endless immensity of white sky in all directions over a knife-flat plain of mottled black and red stone. Here and there, massive clouds drift in the sky or drag along the plain. The clouds are mostly serene, though some do churn with lightning. (The lightning-lit clouds are called dream storms, and should be well avoided.) A PC can seemingly use all their abilities and equipment normally. Because characters from Earth expect gravity, that's what they find within the Unfettered Range, and they can move about normally. If a character successfully uses conceptual creation or self modification to dispense with gravity, they can move simply by thinking about the direction they want to go for the duration of the changed effect.

Breathing isn't necessary nor is eating, but visitors might no even realize that they're mental constructs. Because they believe they need air and food, they do, just like their assumption that gravity exists makes gravity real for them. Damage to someone's conception of themselves in Celerillion is reflected as a loss of mental energy, and of course, minds that remain active for too long need the regenerative power of meditation or sleep.

Celerillion isn't place, at least not in the sense that most other plans are. It's a state of being that exists only in the mind. This means that any creature with a mind, in any dimension, might throw a psychic shadow into or be linked in some way to Celerillion. Indeed, the dimension seems ideally suited to hosting minds like those of humans. Of course, any creature that can conceptualize can also exist, and even thrive, here. the more undeniable link between Earth and the Unfettered Range is how humans sometimes accidentally transport themselves into this dimension, where they become constructs of pure mental energy (though from the viewpoint of travelers, they continue to inhabit their standard physical bodies). This sometimes happens when someone using an artifact that focuses psychic energy has some kind of mishap, if someone with psychic abilities makes a mental breakthrough and discovers a hidden path, or when someone has what seems to be an especially powerful lucid dream.

In addition, a direct "passage" occasionally manifests as a door set high on a cliff face in the Black Riage mountain range and the fortress of Everrod in Celerillion. In the case of Earth, at least, any real understanding of where the passage leads is lacking. The Cathedral of Provenance on Earth might also be used as a passage between the two dimensions.

Finally, most other methods for dimensional travel can land a dimension walker in the Unfettered Rage. If using some kind of dimensional walker, such as the Grinder of Infinities or Crystal Ship, the vehicle remains as a specific concept and apparently physical, though potentially much more vulnerable to modification by someone unfamiliar with the nature of the realm, or by a passing nefarious psychic entity. [1]

A newcomer might first realize the expansive possibility of the dimension when they imagine a simple object and it materializes in their hand. A shin? it's theirs. A cypher? Yes, though it might not work exactly as expected. This probably seems like a wondrous discovery, and it is. But it's equally dangerous realization. Almost inevitably, newcomers eventually succumb to existential curiosity, and wonder about the nature of their own existence.

Oriception[edit | edit source]

Purposely creating something from pure thought, changing oneself by imagining that change, or attacking another creature by concentrating on some harm befalling your target are each separate tasks of a mental devotion and art that tonbrium call "oriception." the 3 component tasks that make up the art include conceptual creation, self-modification, and conceptual attack. However, using oriception deliberately - or accidentally, as often happens to visitors - opens up the weak-minded or unprepared to existential threats that could kill them.

Existential Threat: A PC who imagines themselves to be different in some specific way, must succeed on a difficulty 3 Intellect defense task. It doesn't matter if that difference is to be better, faster, larger, or smarter; or on the flip side, dead, transformed into an object, on fire, or some harmful change. On a failure, the character takes 3 points of Intellect damage (ignores Armor). Next round, the character can try again, and so on, until they're able to purge the troublesome thought from their mind, or until they eliminate themselves from existence. To die in the Unfettered Range is the equivalent of dying on Earth. If the character succeeds on the task and was trying to modify their self-image, they might actually change themselves.

Conceptual Creation: For PCs, the concept of imagining something and thereby creating it is probably heady at first. It's like every wish, spoken and unspoken, comes true. However, if the Cc's mind isn't expansive enough, items (and creatures) created by such wishing are probably not perfectly functional (or even able to survive). All creatures new to Celerillion are initially unpracticed with conceptual creation. So when a creature imagines something (like an animal ), assign a difficulty to it and ask the PC to succeed on an Intellect task, modified to the PC's detriment by one step because they're unpracticed. On a success, the effect becomes temporarily real. On a failure, the effect takes on a semblance of reality, but is only a non-functional facade.

To assign an effect a difficulty, utilize the following guide: a character can create a single creature or object within immediate range as an action. The creation must fit within a 10-ft. cube. The difficulty of the Intellect task to create it is equal to 2 + the level of the object (including any items that are as complex as a cypher) or creature. On a failure, the facade is created, but it doesn't function (if an object) or isn't alive or dies immediately (if a creature). Such creations tend to persist for up to an hour, though concentrating on the creation (treat as an additional task) can extend its existence, and in time, even make it permanent. The higher the level, the more difficult it is to make permanent.

Items and creatures forged by conceptual creation that PCs take with them when they leave Celerillion have the same limited duration in their home dimension, unless they've been concentrated on so thoroughly by the PC that they've become permanent.

Self-Modification: Once a creature has learned how exactly to steer clear of dangerous thoughts and deal with the associated existential threat, the possibility of self-modification, at least in the short term, is possible. However, self-modification is more difficult than conceptual creation, because if anything were to go wrong, it would have immediate consequences. It requires a degree of control and imagination that most visitors to the realm seem to lack. A character can modify themselves in almost any way. They might bestow upon themselves wings, decide that gravity isn't real, give themselves an extra limb, or even give themselves an ability that a much higher-level character would possess. However, the difficulty of the task will be equal to 1 + the level (or tier) of the intended effect, and anyone new to the dimension will be initially unpracticed. On a failure, the character falls into an existential threat loop until they're able to escape.

The effects of self-modification will last for about an hour, though the effect can be extended in the same way as effects of conceptual creation.

Conceptual Attack: If a character imagines harm of any sort to another creature within long range inside the Unfettered Range, that's nothing less than a direct assault upon that creature, regardless of whether or not it was initially intended as one. For unintended attacks (such as imagining a target's head being squished or catching on fire), the Intellect-based attack is difficulty 2 and will inflict 1 point of Intellect damage (ignoring Armor).

Alternatively, a character can knowingly attempt to attack another creature within long range.The exact nature of this attack will be up to the PC - for example, a boulder suddenly fall on top of a target. What matters is the strength of the attack. The PC will decided how many points of damage they wish to inflict, and then will attempt an Intellect task with a difficulty equal to that number. For instance, if a character would like to inflict 4 points of damage, that would be a difficulty 4 task with a number of 12.

Whether the attack is on purpose or not, newcomers aren't practiced in transforming concepts into reality in Celerillion, so all manner of attacks are one step more in difficulty.

Attacks made with any special abilities, equipment, or weapons the character already possesses work just as the PCs would expect them to. for the most part - unless a character begins to doubt the actual existence of such things, in which case the ability or object is treated as if the target of a background existential threat.[2]

Flora and Fauna[edit | edit source]

The Unfettered Range doesn't possess an ecosystem in the same way that many other dimensions do. Flora and related non-conscious life exist only when and where it's propagated by intelligent entities, which means that each instance is literally unique to that area.

On the other hand, a few varieties of ubiquitous creatures exist in Celerillion that, like annoying memes, propagate. Such creatures include the many-winged silver talangins that flock and swoop through the emptiness, subsisting on nothing but the observation of others. More troublesome are the amorphous, idea-eating kalud, which attempt to smother creatures and objects and then consume them. Even more dangerous, however, though thankfully less commonly encountered, are neanics, creatures that attack tonbrium and dimension walkers alike, sucking away their minds merely by being observed.[3]

Cerebral Husks[edit | edit source]

Cerebral husk.jpg

Nature[edit | edit source]

To leave a shadow of its passing in this dimension, an intelligence would have to be many orders of magnitude more complex than the normal human mind. For instance, if the datasphere were conscious, its death would cast a shadow in to the dimension of the mind, creating a cerebral husk. And maybe some of the cerebral husks that litter Celerillion's plain are indeed parallel dimension versions of the Ninth World's datasphere that once embodied a true mind, a mind that grew lonely and died when its creators transcended or went extinct, or which was killed off by some other disaster.

Other kinds of amazingly advanced machine minds exist, or once existed, across the many planes. Add to those the transcended entities, the group consciousness, and celestial objects and dimensions that themselves gained sentience, across all existence, and one begins to that in the infinity of time, many will die. Their graves lie within Celerillion.

Exploration[edit | edit source]

Most husks will protrude form the dark plain, though a few are liked fixed in the sky. Either way, a cerebral husk has the aspect of a shadowed hill or mountain (or moon within a sunless world, if located in the heavens) littered with ruins. It's a conceptual manifestation of the extinguished mind's memories, hopes, knowledge, and experiences. Most can be miles in diameter but an examination from a distance is insufficient to learn more about them - explorers must physically explore their surfaces. An explorer might find literally anything, including items or experiences described on the Cerebral Husk Exploration Table; rolled once every hour of exploration.[4]

Identified Husks[edit | edit source]

Rectifier: An entity that existed in a parallel dimension where most stars were raised to cognizance. The Rectifier was apparently tasked with the duty of putting out any star that didn't "sing" in harmony with the billions of others. Thus, the Rectifier was known to be a "sun-killer", but one who finally met the entity even greater than itself. Explorers to this cerebral husk will sometimes relive memories of blazing glory, but at other instances, be swallowed by a maw from from which no light can escape. The few who are able to survive, however, nearly always with a conception jewel in hand to show for it.[5]

Mardrovik: This machine intelligence was raised over millennia from a lowly, unthinking machine to an entity able to help its builders in any way, including conferring wondrous technologies that multiplied knowledge, longevity, and happiness,as well as the capacity to undertake any task, up to and including planetary engineering. Mardrovik created a massive ringed world with many thousands of times the living volume of the natural world its builder had originated from. But some tiny error in calculations caused a world-breaking disaster. When all of its builders had perished, Mardrovik soon followed.

Explorers to this cerebral husk are afflicted with an overpowering depression, but if they are able to survive, they can find psychic seeds offering amazing insights into a variety of technologies.[6]

Dream Storms[edit | edit source]

Dream storms are a constant danger of Celerillion. These unstable events can whirl dimension walkers and natives alike to distant corners of the dimension so that they become lost, or overwrite their existence. Dream storms can form from the mass of thoughts, dreams, ideas, and emotions that exist across other planes of existence. Usually, this pooled conception manifests as harmless banks of what appear to be clouds in the Unfettered Range. But sometimes a particularly brilliant idea or violent emotion acts as a catalyst, and that serenity is shattered as the discharges of mental energy, like lightning, roil the affected region, and a dream storm is born.

Dream storms usually remain bounded, and can be easily avoided. But sometimes dream storms inflate rapidly, magnifying the affected region many times over. When a dream storm overtakes someone who chooses to enter a bounded storm. Expanding storms "blow" through an area in just under an hour.

Dream storm effects are as follows. A small storm may affect victims only in one way. Larger storm affect victims with all the listed effects one after the next, or in worst-case conditions, simultaneously.

Confounding: Creatures caught within a dream storm lose all sense of direction. Escaping is nearly impossible (a difficulty 8 task) without some kind of aid. If caught in side a moving storm, survivors will often find themselves relocated to a completely unfamiliar region of the dimension.

Mental Erosion:

Erased from Existence: A creature that withstands mental erosion will also face being transformed into an aspect of that concept, and finds itself facing an existential threat. However, the dream storm magnifies the danger. Every 10 minutes that a creature is caught inside of a dream storm, it must succeed on a difficulty 5 Intellect defense task or suffer 5 points of Intellect damage (ignoring Armor). Next round, the character can try to resist the threat once more, and so on, until they're able to purge the invading concept from their minds, or until they're ultimately erased from existence. [7]

Points of Interest[edit | edit source]

• The Crown Fortress

Everrod

Eblisheth Mine

• The Rebel Fortress

• The Red Ocean

Cathedral of Provenance

Hearsay[edit | edit source]

Job in the Mountains:[edit | edit source]

A strange, hairless woman named Marlys has appeared in Ingwald. She's looking for people to help her destroy a cave system she says lies in the Black Riage, as it's a portal to a dimension of "death and destruction."

Lost Fortress:[edit | edit source]

A tonbrium fortress on the edge of the settled range was blown away in a dream storm of unprecedented strength. It's possible the fortress was actually blown into an alternate dimension.

Weird[edit | edit source]

Cerebral Creep:[edit | edit source]

A nameless cerebral husk sometimes changes its vast shape, and for brief moments, takes on the likeness of some vast humanoid turning over in its sleep.

Nameless Ones:[edit | edit source]

A tribe of creatures in Celerillion resides in their own conception of a deep forest. They're humanoid, but otherwise seem like brutal savages that constantly fight among themselves or anyone that enters their forest. According to the tonbrium, these savages precede even their own arrival in the Unfettered Range.[8]

Miscellaneous[edit | edit source]

If a character imagines harm of any sort to another creature within long range in the Unfettered Range, that's nothing less than a direct assault upon that creature, whether or not it was initially intended as one.[9]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Cordell, Bruce, “Celerillion.” Into the Outside, Monte Cook Games, LLP, 2018, pp. 108-110. Numenera. ISBN 978-1-939979-47-6
  2. Cordell, Bruce, “Celerillion.” Into the Outside, Monte Cook Games, LLP, 2018, pp. 110-111, 114. Numenera. ISBN 978-1-939979-47-6
  3. Cordell, Bruce, “Celerillion.” Into the Outside, Monte Cook Games, LLP, 2018, pp. 114. Numenera. ISBN 978-1-939979-47-6
  4. Cordell, Bruce, “Celerillion.” Into the Outside, Monte Cook Games, LLP, 2018, pp. 115. Numenera. ISBN 978-1-939979-47-6
  5. Cordell, Bruce, “Celerillion.” Into the Outside, Monte Cook Games, LLP, 2018, pp. 115. Numenera. ISBN 978-1-939979-47-6
  6. Cordell, Bruce, “Celerillion.” Into the Outside, Monte Cook Games, LLP, 2018, pp. 116-117. Numenera. ISBN 978-1-939979-47-6
  7. Cordell, Bruce, “Celerillion.” Into the Outside, Monte Cook Games, LLP, 2018, pp. 117-118. Numenera. ISBN 978-1-939979-47-6
  8. Cordell, Bruce, “Celerillion.” Into the Outside, Monte Cook Games, LLP, 2018, pp. 122. Numenera. ISBN 978-1-939979-47-6
  9. Cordell, Bruce, “Celerillion.” Into the Outside, Monte Cook Games, LLP, 2018, pp. 114. Numenera. ISBN 978-1-939979-47-6