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Nova used to be a vast empire ruled by a line of Lumen kings and queens. For hundreds of years, the heads of every duchy were powerful Lumens, and when they lent their power to the reigning queen or king, the Novan empire was unstoppable. When the effects of their magic backfired, it took almost every Lumen in the empire to fight it. They were all wiped out, but one.

In the present day, only the royal line and the Ursul line are openly ruled by Lumen. Lumen magic is considered the birthright of Queen Fidelia and Princess Elodie, although other magic users are commonly regarded with suspicion. 

Much of the history and characteristics of Nova can be found on the flavor text of History, Intrigue and Economics training. History of the calamity and Lumen rulers can bo found on the flavor text of Lore training. 

Spoiler Warning: Minor plot details follow, for character spoilers see the character's page

The Royal Capital and Eleven DuchiesEdit

Western Nova Edit

Lampsi Island Edit

The Royal Capital, residence of the royal family and the current Crown Princess Elodie. It's in the middle of the Cavalla River, surrounded by Caloris in the south and Mazomba in the north.

After the calamity that destroyed the Old Capital six hundred years ago, the new capital was built in Lampsi Island and it became the royal residence.

Caloris Edit

Ruled by Joslyn, King-Dowager, Elodie's father. Since Joslyn acts as Elodie's regent until her coronation, Caloris is remporarily ruled by an administrator.

No heirs have been appointed as of the game's start. This may change depending on the player's actions.

"Until about six hundred years ago, the capital of Nova was on the shores of Kathre Lake, in southern Caloris. After that became uninhabitable, a new capital was built (here) on Lampsi Island. It was the chaos of that period which triggered the eventual collapse of the empire." Novan History - 90

Mazomba Edit

Ruled by Duke Armand, younger brother of Joslyn and uncle of Elodie. No known heirs have been appointed as of the game's start.

"You learn that Sunset Bay off the coast of duchy Mazomba is a prime location for fishing." Production - 10

"You learn that an enclave of druids gather herbs from Merva and Mazomba, wine from Hellas, and honey from Mead, in order to make the most valuable medical elixirs." Production - 90

If Elodie appoints Armand as Adair's guardian in Week 22, the latter will come to live here until his coming-of-age.

Ursul Edit

Ruled by Duchess Julianna, younger sister of Duke-Consort Ignatius. It's rulers are infamous in Nova due to the actions of the Duke two-hundred years ago, and their family line keeping active Lumen.

No heirs have been appointed as of the game's start. This may change depending on the player's actions.

"The second most important seaport in the domain is in Ursulia, on the Theku Bay. Ursul is the only duchy with no access to the Cavall River; they send their goods south to you by ship." Trade - 50

"You learn that the forests in Ursul are regularly harvested for timber, but trees in Kigal are left to grow because in their shade grow the smaller trees whose seeds produce coffee and chocolate." Production - 80

"Two hundred years ago, a great force of darkness covered Nova, threatening to wipe out all life in the domain. It took the self-sacrifice of the Queen and her complement of Lumens to defeat that doom. Only the Duke of Ursul refused to join in that defense and therefore survived." Lore - 70

"It is believed that strong magical power attracts danger. Therefore, after the doomshadow was banished, the crystals of the fallen Dukes and Duchesses were destroyed. Only the crown - and the duchy of Ursul - maintain active Lumens." Lore - 100

Merva Edit

Ruled by Duke Laurent, younger brother of the late Queen Fidelia. A newly-reinstated duchy created by Fidelia as part of a compromise with Countess Lucille.

Charlotte is the current heir. This may change depending on the player's actions.

"About sixty years ago, the Duchess of Merva died with no close heirs, and King Fulbert claimed the lands for the keeping of the crown. After your mother took the throne, she re-created the duchy and made her brother, your uncle, its Duke." Novan History - 70

"Your maternal uncle's wife, the Countess Nix, claims kinship to the old Merva line and originally asked your mother for title to the duchy. However, no one could verify her lineage. As a compromise, your mother created her brother Duke of Merva." Internal Affairs - 20

"You learn that an enclave of druids gather herbs from Merva and Mazomba, wine from Hellas, and honey from Mead, in order to make the most valuable medical elixirs." Production - 90

Eastern Nova Edit

Kigal Edit

Ruled by Duke Severin. It has ties with the Lillah family by way of Charmion, Duchess-Consort of Kigal.

No heirs have been appointed as of the game's start. Apparently, Severin waits to decide who of his children is the most promising for the duchy of Kigal; Linley may be the most possible choice, if Elodie marries him.

It is often raided by pyrian bandits.

"You learn that the forests in Ursul are regularly harvested for timber, but trees in Kigal are left to grow because in their shade grow the smaller trees whose seeds produce coffee and chocolate." Production - 80

"The political disruption in Tombula in recent years has caused a disruption in their chocolate production, which is to the benefit of Nova, particularly the duchy of Kigal." Foreign Intelligence - 30

Lillah Edit

Ruled by Duchess Arisse. It has ties with the duchies of Kigal, Mead and Elath, it's rulers refer to Arisse as mother-in-law, mother and wife respectively. As such, the duchess' power and influence is great enough to threaten Elodie's just by existing.

Kiran is the current heir, as Arisse choose to skip Kevan for private reasons.

Lillah has been center stage of many dark rumors concerning the ruling family...

"The duchy of Lillah was not part of the pre-imperial Nova domain, but the western range of the Yeveh nomads. A faction of Yeveni who wished to settle offered their allegiance willingly to a Novan queen, and their chief was named a Duke." Foreign Affairs - 50

"Because the Lillans are descended from Yeveni castouts who were officially shunned, the Yeveh nomads do not acknowledge that Lillah even exists. They treat their western border as an invisible wall, and Novan emissaries as travelers from an impossibly distant land." Foreign Affairs - 60

"In the distant past, the Yevani tribes to the east rode great beasts with spines and tentacles on their heads instead of horses. The bones of these creatures are sometimes found in Lillah and Mead, and their tusks are valuable to crafters." World History - 30

"Over a hundred years ago, a canal was constructed through eastern Lillah so that ore from Elath could be safely transported past the rapids of the upper Cavalla River. The Duchy of Lillah financed the canal's construction and still receives a toll for every boat which passes through." Trade - 60

"Trade in this domain has always focused around water. However, if more and better roads were build, the Duchy of Lillah could gain a lot through overland travel to and from the east." Trade - 100

Mead Edit

Ruled by Duchess Corisande. It has ties to the duchy of Lillah by way of Arisse, Corisande's mother.

Briony is the current heir. This may change depending on the player's actions.

As with the rest of the Lillah family, Mead has it's share of dark secrets...

"In the distant past, the Yevani tribes to the east rode great beasts with spines and tentacles on their heads instead of horses. The bones of these creatures are sometimes found in Lillah and Mead, and their tusks are valuable to crafters." World History - 30

"The last Duke of Mead was the older half-brother of the current Duchess. His reign was brief and highly scandalous - he defied tradition to pledge himself as the lifemate of the old Duke of Ursul, then broke that off only a year later. He retired into seclusion and died still unwed." Internal Affairs - 30

"After the last Duke of Mead went into seclusion, he hired a stream of attractive young servants who had to be frequently replaced after injuries and 'accidents'. He eventually died by falling from a high tower window, which his family covered up. But was it suicide they were hiding, or murder." Internal Affairs - 100

"You learn that wool from Hellas travels north to cotton-growing Mead, where quality cloth is created and dyed." Production - 60

"You learn that an enclave of druids gather herbs from Merva and Mazomba, wine from Hellas, and honey from Mead, in order to make the most valuable medical elixirs." Production - 90

"Legend has it that long ago, a horde of Yeveni on the back of tentacled monsters rode into the valley of Mead laying waste to all in their path. Their conquest was only halted when a Lumen raised a great flood to drown the invaders." Lore - 40

Elath Edit

Held in trust by Earl Fabian, and to be inherited by his son Adair. It has ties to the duchy of Lillah by way of Arisse, Fabian's wife and Adair's stepmother. The ruling family of Elath have been the targets of assassinations for many years, since the Elath-Sedna marriage several generations in the past.

While Adair is the current heir, this may change depending on the player's actions.

"Southeast lies the domain of Talasse, with which we have enjoyed fairly cordial relations. Sedna, their chief province, borders the Novan duchy of Elath, and nobles from the two provinces have been known to intermarry." Foreign Affairs - 40

"Several generations back, the rulers of Elath and Sedna in neighboring Talasse married. The citizens of Elath objected to this foreign influence, and the resulting heir died in suspicious circumstances, after which the title was passed to a distant branch of the family rather than another child of the Elath-Sedna union." Internal Affairs - 70

"Rumor has it that the mother and older sister of the last Duchess of Elath were assassinated twenty years ago by agents from Sedna, which is why she, as sole remaining heir, was married off so young." Foreign Intelligence - 70

"Over a hundred years ago, a canal was constructed through eastern Lillah so that ore from Elath could be safely transported past the rapids of the upper Cavalla River. The Duchy of Lillah financed the canal's construction and still receives a toll for every boat which passes through." Trade - 60

"You learn that gold and other precious minerals are mined in the mountains of Elath." Production - 50

Sudbury Edit

Held in trust by Countess Lieke, and to be inherited by her daughter Lady Gwenelle. It's completely surrounded by the Lillah family line, which may come up if a civil war is declared.

It's often raided by pyrian bandits.

"You learn that most of the domain's iron is mined in Sudbury and transported west by the Gowan River to the Cavalla." Production - 30

"Countess Lieke of Dis married the old Duke of Sudbury, who was more than twice her age, then divorced him as soon as she'd borne him an heir in order to be free to marry another. It was considered shockingly rude by the general nobility, but the old Duke apparently had no objection." Internal Affairs - 50

Southern Nova Edit

Hellas Edit

Ruled by Duchess Brin. It has ties to the duchy of Maree by way of Banion, Brin's younger brother. Recently, it has staged an insurrection against the nation of Ixion, and Elodie will have to deal with the fallout.

No heirs have been appointed as of the game's start. This may change depending on the player's actions.

"Four years ago, The Duchess of Hellas tried to forment an insurrection in northern Ixion, just over the Galbern River border. Not only did that fail, but in retaliation, Ixion pushed troops into southern Maree, and they are still refusing to leave." Foreign Affairs - 20

"The Countess of Dis is now married to the disinherited third sibling of the Duke of Maree and the Duchess of Hellas. Currently, both Duke and Duchess are unwed. If either dies without heir, a title may still pass to the Countess's husband." Internal Affairs - 60

"You learn that the hilly terrain in Hellas is no good for growing most crops, but is excellent for vineyards and migratory flocks of sheep and goats." Production - 40

"You learn that wool from Hellas travels north to cotton-growing Mead, where quality cloth is created and dyed." Production - 60

"You learn that an enclave of druids gather herbs from Merva and Mazomba, wine from Hellas, and honey from Mead, in order to make the most valuable medical elixirs." Production - 90

Maree Edit

Ruled by Duke Banion. It has ties to the duchy of Hellas by way of Brin, Banion's older sister. Due to the actions of Brin, it's currently invaded by Ixionite troops, and Elodie will be forced to deal with this situation.

No heirs have been appointed as of the game's start. This may change depending on the player's actions.

"Four years ago, The Duchess of Hellas tried to forment an insurrection in northern Ixion, just over the Galbern River border. Not only did that fail, but in retaliation, Ixion pushed troops into southern Maree, and they are still refusing to leave." Foreign Affairs - 20

"The Countess of Dis is now married to the disinherited third sibling of the Duke of Maree and the Duchess of Hellas. Currently, both Duke and Duchess are unwed. If either dies without heir, a title may still pass to the Countess's husband." Internal Affairs - 60

"You learn how farmers in the Duchee of Maree rotate between fields for raising crops and fields that lie fallow." Production - 20

"You learn that sand from Maree travels north to Caloris where it is crafted into glass." Production - 70

Other Locations Edit

Kathre Lake Edit

A great lake at the south of Caloris. It was once the landmark of the Royal Capital, until a calamity six hundred years ago released many terrible beasts in the area, and made the land uninhabitable. It's now surrounded by the Old Forest, and legends of the horrors lurking it keep any visitors away.

Some epilogues and events hint that at the old palace there may be a hidded trove of Lumen artifacts, possibly including the lost crystals of the Lumen Queen, Dukes and Duchesses who sacrificed themselves two hundred years ago.

"Until about six hundred years ago, the capital of Nova was on the shores of Kathre Lake, in southern Caloris. After that became uninhabitable, a new capital was built here on Lampsi Island. It was the chaos of that period which triggered the eventual collapse of the empire." Novan History - 90

"At the height of the Novan Empire, all major Dukes and Duchesses were Lumens, and they conquered their enemies with beams of light and terrible summoned monsters. Those monsters eventually broke loose, killing their captors and destroying the Old Capital on Kathre Lake. The resulting chaos shook the Empire." Lore - 60

Old Forest Edit

A deep forest surrounding Kathre Lake, it's home to many vicious, nigh-indestructible monsters. Legends of the horrors lurking within keep any visitors away.

During Week 28, with the right choices and checks, Briony will reveal her intention to explore the Old Forest alone in a quest for treasure. Elodie can agree to go with her and barely survive the trip during Week 29, or abandon Briony there to save herself; alternatively, Elodie may send Briony alone or be completely unaware of Briony leaving to the forest. In all cases except the former, Briony will die in the forest.

Current policies concerning rampaging monsters are to simply let them be until they return to the forest, as there are no methods to fight them back. If Elodie reaches coronation with Lumen as her highest stat, she may start to take measures against the monsters.

Some of the monsters mentioned are:

  • Keythong: An apparetly basilisk-like giant monster. Around Week 11 it will be alerted that one is rampaging outside the Old Forest.
  • Doomshadow: Also named "creeping shade". A fast monster seemingly made of pure shadow, mauls it's prey to death. If Elodie kills Lucille during Week 17, one will be summoned and murder a young squire before being (apparently) dealt with by Julianna.
  • Tentacle monster: As the name implies, a jet-black giant tentacle monster hiding in the forest, very resilent but still capable of feeling pain. One will attack Elodie and Briony during the forest adventure. Not to be confused with the Kraken.

See also Achievement "Survived the Old Forest?"

Assorted Counties Edit

These are counties ruled by Earls and Countesses. Most are named after astral bodies or greek and roman mythological characters.

Titan Edit

Ruled by Earl Fabian. Has no named heirs.

Named after the titans of greek mythology, also the name of a moon of Saturn.

Ishtar Edit

Ruled by Earl Erwin. To be inherited by Connor.

Named after the mesopotamic goddess Ishtar, associated with the planet Venus, the stars, and sometimes the moon.

Serenitatis Edit

Ruled by Duke Banion. Has no named heirs.

Named after a lava-filled lunar basin, east of Mare Imbrium.

Imbrium Edit

Ruled by Duke Banion. Has no named heirs.

Named after a lava-filled lunar basin, west of Mare Serenitatis.

Dysnomia Edit

Ruled by Duchess Brin. Has no named heirs.

Named after the greek goddess Dysnomia, also the name of a moon of Eris.

Io Edit

Ruled by Earl Kevan, most likely assigned to an administrator. Has no named heirs.

Named after the mythological Io, also a moon of Jupiter.

Nix Edit

Ruled by Duchess-Consort Lucille. Emry may be heir to it.

Named after the greek goddess and personification of the night Nix, also a moon of Pluto.

Dis Edit

Ruled by Countess Lieke. To be inherited by Anciet.

Named after either the roman god of the underworld (later identified as Pluto), or a spirit of nordic mythology.

Callisto Edit

Ruled by Countess Sirin. Has no named heirs.

Named after the greek nymph Callisto, also a moon of Jupiter.

Miranda Edit

Ruled by Countess Sirin. Has no named heirs.

Named after Miranda, a main character of Shakespeare's play The Tempest, also a moon of Uranus.

Novan Society Edit

Government Edit

Nova has been ruled by monarchy since its foundation, divided by ranks of royal family, duchies, counties and administrators (this being the highest possible rank for commoners, barring marriage or ennobling by the ruling monarch). Rulership is unisex, the inheritance usually assigned to the firstborn, but this can be averted by choice of the predecessor.

There are some minor elements that suggest a matriarchal social structure, such as the priests in the chief religion and at least one major god being female (the Good Lady). However, this is clearly not a matter of law. Kings have been named in Nova's past (King Latimer being the most famous monarch, and the only one mentioned by name who is not closely related to Elodie), Elodie's heir at the beginning of the game is her male uncle, and the gender balance of Dukes and Duchesses is near-even.

Religion Edit

Nova is polytheistic, though they don't seem to belive in a patron god. Some acts of worship have become public celebrations, such as the Procession of the Good Lady (which seems to be a major goddess).

Religion is represented by an organized group of priestesses, the highest rank being the Priestess of the First Circle (the one presiding the coronation); unlike some real-life parallells, priestesses aren't barred from having relationships, marrying or even bearing children.

Magic and divination is deeply ingrained in religion: the gods constantly send omens of the future, and some acts of magic have become elements of worship, it's even possible for Lumens to become a part of religion if their reputation improves by the end of the game. The priestesses are also a secretive order, their greatest knowledge and arts are not shared with anyone not initiated in the mysteries, not even the Queen.

Lumen Edit

Traditionally, the highest-ranking nobles were Lumens, but since the calamity that ended with the sacrifice of the queen and most dukes and duchesses two-thousand years prior, magic was abandoned by nobility, now limited only to the royal family (as birthright) and the duchy or Ursul (considered traitors and rebels).

Despite owing most of it's history and past glories to Lumens and magic, both are strongly dissapproved in current society; this is because magic and Lumens were also the reason for many of Nova's most terrible calamities, such as the creation of the Old Forest, and stories of Lumens abusing their powers are rather common. This can change for better or worse depending on Elodie's actions.

Laws and Customs Edit

Seen from in-game examples, criminal trials can be brought by the government or nobility, with the country's regent acting as judge (in this case, Elodie acting in her authority as future queen). Sentences are given depending on the severity of the crime (and Elodie's will, in this cases); for heavy charges such as murder and treason, the sentence is execution by decapitation or public hanging.

Laws are somewhat ambiguous and mostly determined by the higher-classes, judgements use an inquisitorial system where the judge (in this case, the ruling monarch) acts as examining magistrate, and there's no prosecution, defense or jury besides the witnesses, the accuser and the accused's testimony.

Nova also keeps the custom of duels, at least in the case of nobility. One can challenge another person if they feel their honor threatened, while the challenged choses the weapons for the duel. Apparently, the challenged can refuse the duel, though it may be seen as further insult. Also, duels may end non-lethally if the winner choses not to deliver the finishing strike. During a duel, no-one is allowed to interrupt, though further attacks after the end of the duel are against the rules and put criminal laws in effect (arrest for assault).

Life and Health Edit

The legal age of maturity is 15, and life expectancy is around 60's.

Medicine doesn't seem to be much advanced, most practices depend on herbalism and basic understanding of wounds and agents of disease, and public health is a foreign concept, mental health moreso. Education is very limited, mostly given to nobility, and books are innaccesible to commoners. Both of these can be changed by Elodie depending on her actions.

Economy Edit

Nova's commerce is highly dependant on naval trading, though it also enjoys varied local production. The island nation of Malini is one of Nova's closest trading partners thanks to friendly relations. See Economics for more details.

The local currency is lassi and tilassi, gold and silver coins, respectively.

Real-life Cultural Parallels Edit

Nova's cultural parallells are all over the place, better described as a mishmash of Europe. It uses the British rank "Earl" in place of "Count". Names range from French (Elodie, Laurent, Armand, Charlotte, Lucille...), to English and Irish (Kevan, Briony, Thaddeus, Cayleigh...), to Welsh (Banion, Brin...), to Greek and Latin (Corisande, Charmion, Paulus, Hyacinth...), to even Dutch (Lieke).

Chronologically, it's also all over the place. Clothing ranges from 19th century to 21st century (ex: Elodie's Catsuit and Exercise Gear), with some dating some centuries back but easily justified by being traditional clothes (ex: Elodie's Tabard and the maid's uniforms); Alice's and Talarist's glasses also have a rather modern design. Medicine is very outdated, but some countries (Ixion) have public health establishments, suggesting 16th century. The structure of laws and judgements give a 15th to 16th century feel. Duel as a custom was outlawed in most of Europe between the 18th and 19th centuries, so it makes the setting date back to that.

Noble Families Edit

Nova royalty and noble families tree by Mistle

Trivia Edit

Etymology Edit

Most of Nova is named after impact craters, in the sense of explosions and calamity. Incidentally, it's also named after celestial bodies and deities.

  • Nova is named after the cataclysmic explosion of stars.
  • Caloris is named after an impact basin on Mercury. "Calor" is also the Latin and Spanish word for "heat".
  • Mazomba is named after an impact crater on Triton, a moon of Neptune.
  • Ursul is named after an impact crater on Titania, a moon of Uranus.
  • Merva is named after an impact crater on Titan, a moon of Saturn.
  • Maree is named after lava-filled basins found in Earth's Moon.
  • Hellas is named after an impact crater on Mars.
  • Mead is named after an impact crater on Venus.
  • Kigal is named after the mesopotamian death goddess Ereshkigal. According to Hanako, it's meant to represent Pluto (roman god of the underworld).
  • Elath is an ancient word meaning "Supreme Goddess", and associated with Anat. According to Hanako, it's mean to represent Jupiter (supreme god of roman mythology).
  • Sudbury is named after a meteoric impact crater on Canada.
  • Lillah is named after Lilith. According to Hanako, the breaking off from the naming theme it's meant to represent Lillah's foreign origins.

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