A note from ForgottenManOnline

Due to feedback from later chapters, I have added tabled cells to indicate game data that is delivered to Jim via a user interface. Currently, these tables are white on brown. I hoped this format would be less harsh on someone reading on a smartphone at night but would appreciate any feedback offered, especially from people that are colourblind.

Please comment below!

Jim stepped into his new, digital existence, unable to move. He attempted to look around and view the world he’d been transported to, but the muscles in his neck, back, or any other body part that could rotate refused to acknowledge his existence. Instead, Jim was forced to look down into a rippling pool of water. A vague reflection of a face manifested before him, but Jim was unable to make out any details. After a second of focussing on the reflection, a somewhat-intrusive user interface transitioned from clear to opaque.

At the top of his vision, just before details faded into the periphery, the words “Character Creation” appeared. In the centre of his view, blocking the view of his face, Jim was instructed that he would first need to select his bloodline.

All players of Platinum Online must first create a character before they begin the game. You must first choose your bloodline, or ‘race.’ Your experience may differ from similar games you have played in the past because you are required to begin this game as a human character; however, you may select a bloodline of one of the exotic species.

Due to a drastic change of governance in the human kingdom, members of exotic species’ bloodlines are being forced out of the nation. Should you select a non-human bloodline, you will be guided out of the human kingdom, to a small settlement populated by members of your bloodline.

You may also select the pure-human bloodline. Pure humans will remain within the fractious, but densely populated human kingdom. Platinum Online recommends a pure-human start for newer players, as you will have a much more typical and social gaming experience.

Be aware, however, that, while pure humans will be at an advantage with the wide pool of players to draw from, exotic species’ bloodlines will offer more rewarding, more complex and, potentially, hidden or unique ways to play the game.

Please select your bloodline now.

The instructions intuitively disappeared when Jim finished reading the text, and the rippling puddle before him became clearer. The sunken face of a frail, old man looked back at Jim, shocking him. Jim found it difficult to reconcile the appearance of the 66-year-old in front of him with how he remembered his 46-year-old bathroom mirror reflection. Before he could study himself in detail, the user interface appeared again. This time, the text details the benefits of being a pure-blooded human.

Pure Human bloodline:
Charisma bonus; Civilised; Magic affinity varies.
The humans of the Soltolan nation prepare for… (read more?)

Jim read the limited description of the human race selection but did not choose to read on. He instead focussed his gaze upon his reflection, which had been shoved to the side of his vision when the user interface had blocked it. He found so few recognisable features there. His cheeks were gaunt and hollow; something his love of food had never allowed him to see on himself before. His complexion was much paler than usual and looked so lifeless and grey that the much thinner and much greyer hair he hadn’t expected barely warranted mentioning. No, the only familiar thing he saw on that face were his eyes. It wasn’t that he recognised himself in the eyes before him, but rather he recognised his father. As lost as Jim felt in the world right now, it felt good to have that fleeting connection with his dad.

Jim blinked away the thoughts and shook his head, finding that his neck muscles had begun to respond. The image of the pure human option flowed downstream to the left.

A slightly brutish, and healthier looking, version of himself stared back at him next.

Orc bloodline:
Strength bonus; Tribal; Nature magic affinity.
The disparate Orcish tribes of… (read more?)

Jim shook away this option and decided to view the options before getting bogged down in the details.

Ogre bloodline:
Strength bonus; Intellect malus; Tribal; Blood (unique) magic affinity.
… (read more?)

The unique blood magic of the Ogre bloodline intrigued Jim, but it seemed counterintuitive to select a unique magic type when he would also receive reduced intelligence to use such magic. He continued looking and found, in total, 12 different options he could take. There seemed to be two races for each of six, key attributes: Strength, Constitution, Dexterity, Intellect, Wisdom, and Charisma. Spread throughout these races were also a variety of magical affinities, though many of the different species seemed to be limited in what magic they could wield thus turning Jim off those species. The most mystifying of the differences was the social groups that each race used. Jim read several of the bloodlines’ deeper descriptions but was unable to determine what difference this modifier would have on his gameplay. From what little he could find, Jim wanted to avoid being a ‘Solitary’ or ‘Pariah,’ however.

Jim eventually settled upon a Reptilian bloodline. Many of his reasons were gameplay related – he’d be able to choose different magic types; he’d be able to function within a society, and he’d been attracted to the premise of “ancient, terrible power.” However, his ultimate reason behind his selection was vanity. He thought that the faint scales beneath his skin and, especially, on his prominent cheekbones, looked the least bad on a 66-year-old man. He looked forward to seeing how he could change his appearance and possibly remedy his aging features.

Reptilian bloodline:
Wisdom bonus; Civilised; Magic affinity varies.
The reptilian civilisations are the oldest on the planet of Teritania. Long before any of the humanoid creatures evolved, a myriad of Reptilian empires rose, warred, and fell. While many of the modern peoples of Teritania only remember the Lizard-men, Saurian people, whose empire fell beneath the South-Eastern sands, they were but the least of the Reptilian bloodline. The scattered remnants of the Saurian people desperately await leaders to restore their civilisation.

Will you, James, restore your people’s proud bloodline? Will you awaken the ancient, terrible power that waits in your cold, crimson blood?

James selected the oldest species’ bloodline with a thought.

“I will.” 

All Race Selections – Readers may skip this.

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About the author


Bio: Hi,
My name's Tim and I'm writing Forgotten Man Online, a game-literature light novel web-series that I plan to release here, on Royal Road, and eventually hopefully through Amazon's Kindle platform.

I studied writing at university for three years and then became a high-school English teacher in Australia (6 years in). Hopefully, that means you will find my content to be of a high standard and that you will enjoy it, provided you can stand the British spelling of words :).

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