So, I have been trying to introduce Academagia to a couple of my friends as (among other things) a place in which my writing may be found. The problems with this are 2. Firstly, there is the game mechanics, which require much learning. Secondly, there is the setting, which is so complicated that to describe it as (for example) inspired by A Wizard of Earthsea (a very good source and summary to me) does not do much good.
With this in mind, I create the following summary. I hope that I may show it to them, but I seek any feedback from the Team. I would hate to misrepresent this game's setting in a way that they do not like.
Academagia is set in a school for magic (the eponymous Academagia) that is patterned after a medieval or Renaissance university - here, students are meant, in theory, to receive a universal education that includes not only a scholarly subject (in this case, magic), but also education in the foundations of knowledge. The Academagia is located in Mineta, the capital city of the Empire of Man - an empire that formed in floating islands above the surface of a world ruled by dragons who were opposed by their rebellious human slaves. The humans revolted, so the dragons, using their vast magic, tore large chunks of the planet off and trapped them and their contents in the air - but the human rebellion continued. The Empire of Man drove the dragons to distant sky islands, and the humans were left, more or less, in peace - but without dragons to oppress them, humans can oppress each other, especially as the Empire of Man decays: it has had no emperor since a catastrophe centuries ago that destroyed a large Island and the imperial line, and is former kingdoms and provinces are now more united by religion, custom, and diplomacy than by any power from Mineta, and the magic airships can only connect the islands so much. And who is to say that the dragons will not come back to conquer what they once ruled over?
The Academagia has nine Colleges, each of which is dedicated to a type of magic and an accompanying type of mundane knowledge. Each college has its own personality and associated adventures for players to explore if they want. The colleges are:
Aranaz (Magic: none any more, but they may not like being reminded of that) (Knowledge: History): This college is filled with extremely talented, extremely ambitious, extremely ruthless students – appropriate, given that this college was able to survive even after it was stripped of a school of magic to call its own. The schemes of its students are bad enough, but how much more complicated things get when the Regent of the College’s schemes are added in!
Avila (Magic: Astrology – the magic of using stars to understand reality – and predict how reality will unfold) (Knowledge: geometry): Avila strives to represent an ideal in the heavens and among people – making sense of the world through studying the stars and adhering to precise rules of etiquette. But this ideal may not always be able to be followed – the stars have their secrets still, and secret studiers, and strange rumours surround how Avila is operated and whom it associates with…
Durand (Magic: Negation – the magic of cancelling out great forces – including magic, light, and gravity) (Knowledge: botany and dialectic): Durand’s students are a mixed lot: some are attracted by the botany, others by the negation, but they are united by finding the dialectic boring if they are lucky. But Durand has used its negation magic to do great things in terms of fighting criminals – and its mysterious young regent is determined to continue this tradition against all foes.
Godina (Magic: Incantation – the magic of creating fire, water, ice, lighting, wind, air, earth, etc., out of nothing and shaping such created matter) (Knowledge: Athletics and Music): For a college dedicated to incantation, Godina is not currently well focused on incantation. Its Regent was chosen more for his skill in athletics than his skill in incantation, and the current Incantation professor is a scatterbrained woman of unknown origins. Still, for those who want to get involved in athletics or similar games, Godina is a fine college.
Hedi (Magic: Glamour – the magic of creating illusions for the senses) (Knowledge: Grammar and Rhetoric): Hedi is the college for diplomats, and it has no feuds with other colleges. Yet this does not mean that it is not interesting. It has a strong association with the fays and their magics, and its regent is a leading authority on dreams. And dreams and diplomacy can lead to interesting places…and people.
Morvidus (Magic: Revision – the magic of changing and transforming) (Knowledge: Zoology): Morvidus’s students seem to be marked very much by extremes. Extremes of pacifism, obsession, and vegetarianism are well known among its students. Still, united for the most part by love of animals, they are mostly harmlessly eccentric. Their professor and regent, on the other hand, are taking zoology in some very interesting – and potentially dangerous – directions.
Vernin (Magic: Enchantment – the magic of creating magical artifacts) (Knowledge: Arithmetic): Vernin wants to be defined by perfection and beauty – the beautiful objects perfectly created will attract wealthy and powerful students who can create more perfection and beauty. But Vernin has a more serious role – as the maintainer of powerful magical wards, its members must deal with powerful and long-lasting magics. If only such treatment could be guaranteed to be competent…
Icanicix (Magic: Gates – the magic of creating life, summoning creatures, and teleportation) (Knowledge: Natural Philosophy): Several centuries before the opening of the game, Icanicix College was shut down and the practice of Gates magic made a crime punishable by death. But it is difficult to trap people who can teleport, and they – or their lore – may still be out there, waiting to instruct the courageous and inquisitive student.
Kazus (Magic: Mastery – the magic of controlling minds, telepathy, and much hypnosis) (Knowledge: Draconic Philosophy): Several centuries before the opening of the game, Kazus College was shut down and the practice of Mastery magic made a crime punishable by death. Yet a barely tolerated remnant of the college is rumoured to exist, and even darker rumours hint at ways to study Mastery itself.