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Magic in Firstborn: Essence, Invocation and Sorcery

Hello again and welcome to another Firstborn development blog! With the upcoming pre-alpha update set to usher in the new Essence system, I thought it would be a good time to take a look at how magic works in the world of Firstborn.

Essence: The Power of the Gods

Essence is the raw power of creation, used by the Gods to bring forth the world and the Firstborn at the dawn of time. When it manifests, Essence usually appears as a strange, purplish flame that burns without any visible fuel. In other cases, Essence can also be more liquid in form, appearing as a thick, purplish goo.

While manifested in physical form, Essence can be absorbed by living creatures to power various magical abilities.

Volatile Essence:

In some cases, Essence that manifests physically is highly unstable and will explode into destructive energy if disturbed. Such manifestations are most commonly seen areas where a large amount of Sorcery has recently been used, almost as if the Essence itself rebels against the vile powers of the Dark Gods.

Invocation: Channeling the Power Within

All living being possess some amount of Essence, from the tiny traces found in plants to the tremendous reserves of a powerful Firstborn Lord. Invocation, the most common form of magic in the world of Firstborn, draws on the Essence of the user to alter the world around them.

Invocation usually manifests as spectacular blasts of elemental energy, effects created by drawing on the Essence that sustains the life of the caster. This process is exhausting, and an Invoker who draws too heavily on their own Essence can soon pass out or even perish from the exertion.

Only the Firstborn possess enough innate Essence to use Invocation naturally. Humans that wish to use Invocation must absorb additional Essence. Absorbing the physical manifestations of Essence is difficult and dangerous, so most humans wishing to learn Invocation begin by drinking the blood of a Firstborn. Once a human has absorbed Essence in this way, future attempts become far safer and more reliable.

Sorcery: The Magic of the Unborn

Unlike living creatures, the Unborn are completely incapable of Invocation. The reasons for this are unclear, but human scholars posit that perhaps the Unborn lost their ability to store and channel Essence when they forfeited their physical forms to become one with the Void.

Despite their inability to use Invocation, the Unborn possess powerful magic. During the Great War of the Dawn Age, the Dark Gods taught the Unborn the secrets of Sorcery in exchange for their aid in the battle against the Gods.

Unlike Invocation, Sorcery draws on the Essence of the lifeforms around the caster, siphoning power from other creatures to fuel various destructive effects. Because of its parasitic nature, the frequent use of Sorcery will leave an area barren and desolate, with plants and living creatures dying from the strain of being repeatedly drained. As a result, the areas around Unborn lairs are often arid wastelands stripped bare by the power of Sorcery.

I hope you enjoyed this week's Firstborn development blog! Join us for more behind-the-scenes info!

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