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Exalted – Abyssals (Overview)

May 18, 2010

We’re starting to get into my favorite kinds of Exalted, now: the bad guys. Of course, like all Exalted, morality is left to the player to decide, but the next two types of Exalts walk the line a little more questionably.

First, we’ll discuss the Abyssal Exalted. There are two sides to these Exalts – what most people know, and what almost no one knows.

Most people know they’re bad news. They’ve been appearing out of and around Shadowlands (those places where Creation and the Underworld meet) for about five years now, serving the Deathlords and generally mucking up everything. They’re powerful, fearsome, and Gothic, but don’t call them emo, or they’ll eat your soul.

The truth, of course, is the part no one knows. Right after the Uusurpation, the dead Neverborn came to several ghosts of murdered Solars and offered them great power to serve Oblivion. The ghosts, grieved or just maddened, agreed, and thus were born the Deathlords. For centuries, their plans were subtle and invasive, and they essentially conquered the Underworld.

Then, one of their conquered brethren came to the Neverborn and told them about the Jade Prison, the artifact housing the imprisoned Exaltations of the deposed Solars. This Yozi whispered to the Neverborn a way to corrupt those Exaltations, in exchange for their help in opening the prison and fifty Exaltations tithed to the Yozis.

The Neverborn cracked the prison, but only captured about half of the three hundred Solars. Of these, fifty went to the Yozis. The remaining hundred were broken, corrupted, and turned into black, hateful mirrors of the Solars. These are the Abyssal Exalted.

Servants of the Deathlords (at least for now), each Abyssal was a mortal, given a choice at the moment of death: pass on and take your chances with reincarnation, or be saved but serve the End of All That Is. The Abyssals are those who made the choice, even for an instant, to serve Oblivion.

Some of them do regret their decision and seek to redeem themselves, but the path to redemption is long and with no guarantee of success. Most accept their damnation, and seek to draw everything that exists into the Underworld, where Oblivion will eventually consume it all. Their powers are mirrors of those of the Solars, but dark mirrors, two sides of the same coin.

The Abyssals are probably the single greatest threat to Creation: individuals with the indomitability of Solars, everlasting life, and the power of Oblivion running through their corrupted veins. In the end, even the Deathlords may draw back in terror from the weapons their Exalted have become… for in the end, even the Deathlords will fall before their world-ending powers.

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