Today is the beginning of a new era in our Brotherhood. Today, we received our first member to choose a Gray Jedi Order. This marks the beginning of a monumental shift in our Brotherhood, as we open our doors to new character archetypes and begin the process of shifting towards a new Path and new Orders. Following Pravus' monumental release of our new rank structures, we are pushing ahead with our plans to implement the new Path system we have been talking about for so long.
After a brief discussion with various members and the Dark Council, we have decided to go with what we call a phased release of our Path and Order system. This will allow us to identify potential issues as we go forward, while providing members with a solid idea of what they can expect when. This will gradually roll out the major changes we have in store for the club. Some of the cool features we have planned, or the customization for different Orders, may not be immediately available - for instance, what V'yr has planned for our non-Force users will not roll out until Phase 3, even though the Orders themselves may be selectable by Phase 2. We know this can be frustrating, but bear with us while we implement these amazing new options for our members.
Phase 1: Release of Gray Path (All), Gray Jedi(All), Clan Path choices instituted(All), Closure of non-Sith/Jedi Orders(All), Shuffle old Order CORE to Legends Courses (HM), Traditions(DGM), Wiki and other documentation updates begin(DGM,T:Wiki), begin release of new fictional background relating to Orders(Voice), and release of the planned Weapon Perks for all Orders(HRLD).
We have already implemented the Gray Path, Gray Jedi, and Clan Path Choices. Non-Sith/Jedi Orders have been transformed to Traditions. Members may begin to submit transfers to appropriate Paths and Orders, but keep in mind that we have not implemented non-Force users yet. The Headmaster will begin the transition of the Shadow Academy to our new Orders by shuffling old CORE tests. I will enlist my Magistrate and the Wiki Staff to begin updating our documentation to reflect all incoming new Orders and the new Path system. The Voice will begin a release of new fictional updates for the club during this period, which will continue through all following phases. The Herald will release plans during this period for Weapon Rank Perks for all Orders, even those implemented in Phase 2.
Implementation: By 8/21. We have already implemented the Gray Path, Gray Jedi, and Clan Path Choices. Non-Sith/Jedi Orders have been transformed to Traditions. Members may begin to submit transfers to appropriate Paths and Orders, but keep in mind that we have not implemented non-Force users yet.
Administratively, Paths control which Order one can request. Thus, if an individual wishes to be a Gray Jedi but is currently on the Dark Path, they must transfer to the Gray or Light Paths first.
Remember, Traditions are flavor-based character choices that are loose associations based on myth, legends, and lore. Starting soon, we will present information on how members can request they be added. They may be Path restricted, or they may be non-restricted.
As a quick refresher, recall this image from a past report of mine:
I wanted to highlight that the Gray Jedi and Dark Jedi are effectively the same "Order" - they are both Force users that are not bound by restrictive dogmas or codes, like those that belong to the Jedi Order or Sith Order. However, which side of the Force these individuals draw on (primarily) is based upon their Path. This may seem confusing, but again, to new joins, once the Test of Identity is live (see below), their Order choice will make sense based on the Path choice.
Phase 2: Release of Test of Identity(SCL,DGM,Voice), non-Force using Orders (All), Update DB Basics to include all current Orders(HM), Release first selector items for non-Force users(HRLD), Unique Order Feat implementation(GM,DGM,Voice,CM), Process for Tradition submission (DGM), Character Sheet Integration for Non Force Users begins (GM, DGM, Voice, CM), Edit Sith and Jedi COREs(HM)
The Test of Identity will be released, and Non-Force using Orders will be implemented along with the proposed way of handling their character sheets and a small number of initial selector weapons for dossiers. Each Order will have a specific Feat that defines that Order on the CS, including Force users. Members can become Mercenaries or Loyalists during this period, but Weapon Rank Perks will not yet be available (e.g. no custom weapons yet).
Implementation by: 8/31
Phase 3: Order CORE for non-Force users(HM), Release of Weapon Rank Perks for all Orders (HRLD), finalization of Clan Path Choices (Consuls), finalization of Order Character Sheet information (GM, DGM, Voice, CM).
Phase 3 will be a gradual rollout of features as they are available. The Headmaster will unveil new courses for all non-Force users. The Herald's Office will roll out features for Weapon Perks as they are available. Finalization of Clan Path choices will occur with a final statement by Clans on potential Path changes, which corresponds to a promise we made that units could change their Paths after they have been implemented for a little bit. Order Character Sheet balance may be heavily adjusted during this period if we feel it needs to be.
Phase 3 ends: 10/1.
We will do our best to stick to each of these dates and items. Various Dark Councilors are involved in a variety of aspects of these phases, but we feel confident we can meet all of these deadlines.
Following so many excellent Path proposals, the Voice, Grand Master, and I decided that all Clans had fully substantiated their respective Path decisions. The site currently reflects all of these choices. We are very excited about the diversity of choices, including a declared Gray Clan, an all-Dark Clan, and a Clan split between all three Paths. We think membership experience will really be improved by all of these options and the amazing stories our units are crafting, both together and on their own. Many of our units expressed a strong desire to work with one another - or in some cases already had - to continue their respective storylines. This is an exciting time in the Brotherhood, and we are glad to see so many units diving into it!
The Voice wanted to summarize the fictional status of each unit, and so that has been included along with motto and Path choices.
Going forward, members may request changes to their Path that coincide with their unit now without any problems. They also may submit Path changes that conflicts with their unit only after receiving permission from their summit and ONLY if they have sufficient fictional justification as determined by a discussion with the Voice, the MAA/his staff, and the GM/DGM. This process will be tightly controlled and reviewed frequently, with the MAA staff involved to ensure that frequent Path violations are noted. I heavily encourage all members and summits to involve Evant and myself in any discussion of members seeking to "violate" a unit Path.
Of course, units may find their storyline evolving over time, and that is okay, which is why we allow Path changes periodically, including once in October, and other than that, every six months.
Not long ago, Tarentum was a unit on the brink. Placed on a heavy probation, Tarentum faced the seemingly impossible task of rebuilding. Raiju and his staff did just that: Today, Tarentum boasts our fastest growing roster since I took over as Pravus' Deputy, and there is no other sure sign of success for this unit than the opening of House Mortis. Congratulations to Tarentum!
There's been a fair amount of reasonable grumbling over the change in rank names. One thing I want to stress is that it is entirely impossible to come up with a single list that satisfies every member's archetype. In fact, our goal was in fact not to do this. We did not feel we should need to, or try to; we went with themes for each Order's ranks and tried to stick with the themes through logical progressions. Nothing is perfect, so I realize some people are unhappy with a rank here or there, or the loss of Krath and Obelisk. Any time there is such a large scale change I think a lot of people will understandably not be happy with it. However, we did think it was important to condense the Orders in preparation for the Brotherhood's future, and we did think it was important to try to create themed ranks.
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