A familiaresque roleplay!
This roleplay is an idea that was developed by an old IRC roleplaying group of mine that I wanted to test out here. The idea was that characters would work to achieve Apotheosis via working with a familiar in a world where the goal is to become the last of your kind. Essentially, it's Highlander with a spiritual companion. We tried this roleplay out in a bunch of ways before we actually refined it - you know, prettied it up with a more definite plot and setting. Just to work out the kinks of the system. Because I'm iffy on the idea, I'm going to present two general ways the roleplay can go based on a stat system, and if this gets enough interest we'll vote on it and I'll design it if interested parties want it.
There are three main parts to the roleplay, ie the three core values:
These three values work together, but alone are also important - to improve diversity, you can focus on any one you want. You could go the roleplay focusing on your character without his familiar being very powerful, or vice versa. The connection between them is more of a supplementary stat. Prettied up, these values are called: Spirit, Familiar and Vitum.
The Spirit Value is set with 1 being a basic human level for stats. For now, I'm going to simply explain how it will work. Your spirit value is divided into two main values: Visceral and Spiritual. The Visceral subvalue contains strength, agility and endurance. The Spiritual subvalue contains potency, reserves and control of Spiritual Energy. A character may focus on either or both.
The Familiar value is set similarly, but a Familiar is generally an entirely different being, albeit this can be tweaked. A Familiar is also allotted one Main Ability. Every Familiar with have a single ability that is theirs and is their strongest. Over time, they may develop others and they may take on an ability of another Familiar if they consume them. Consuming a Familiar means ultimate destruction for it.
The Vitum value is the Spirit's connection to the Familiar and the Spirit World in general. The stronger the Vitum, the closer the souls of the Spirit and Familiar are and the closer attuned the Spirit and/or Familiar is to the Spiritual World around them, which may influence a myriad of factors. In terms of stats, this value will supplement the Spirit, Familiar and possibly allot more stats for distribution. A strong Vitum can make up for a weak Spirit.
Now, without stats, it's pretty simple. You create a character with a Familiar as creatively as you like on the weakest possible level. Every character will start out pretty weak. Their Familiar will be more like a prankster than a warrior-ghost. Familiar's themselves are actually the souls of fallen contestants, and this entire setup is a world created for a bunch of Spiritually attuned individuals from across the universe (same planet or not, different humanoid races) to reach a god-like status as quick as possible. No one knows why, they just get assigned a Familiar that is most closely attuned to their soul. The world itself is a prison world normally thousands of years in the making. This doesn't mean the world is inhabited solely by convicts. There will be families, farms, cities, etc created by the families of former dangerous criminals and then of course... you know.. dangerous criminals. This is all important because a Vitum is strengthened in two ways. Training or a Familiar consuming souls. The stronger the soul, the more benefit. In theory, a less moral Spirit could make their Familiar go on a rampage consuming souls, but this will eventually hit a plateau effect. Kind-of like first-form Cell did in Dragon Ball Z.
Now, for some terminology. The energy used is called Spiritual Energy, but there will probably be others. All Spiritual energy exists as energy, thus has a distinct wavelength and frequency. A Spirit starts out normally only being able to control energy set to their natural wavelength and frequency. These qualities influence the roleplay a lot, help choose how a Spirit meets their Familiar, etc. In general, everyone has a unique Wavelength and Frequency. Sometimes, there may be a person with two or even three Familiars by luck. Good for them. Sometimes, two people will have on Familiar. Sometimes, two people can interchange Familiars. You get the idea. This is normally fairly rare. Maybe ten instances per fifty-thousand. At first, this is not a value I will let you mess with too much due to its integral part of the roleplay. Secondly, characters are called Warlocks and their Familiars are called Wraiths. Simple stuff here. Every Warlock has a Spirit but not every Wraith is a Familiar. Again, Wraiths are merely the disembodied Spirits of former contestants after the ritual that binds the souls. It's also worth noting that a Warlock and a Wraith are both souls, just in different forms. Any individual even the slightest bit spiritually-attuned shall be called "Touched"
Some minor details... there will be fifty-to-one-hundred thousand Warlocks with their Wraiths on this planet that will be conveniently the size of Earth, however it will only have two super continents. There will be millions of citizens. Thousands of still-dangerous convicts. A very powerful, influential Police Force called The Arm, even including their own Touched members. Until now, few of the citizens will know of this Contest of sorts, and those that do will be akin to the odd shaman lady or the creepy dude no one listens to. Some characters may know what this contest is about, for others it might be a journey. For some, you may train, for others you may consume souls. Know this, there will be a point when consuming normal souls will not work and training will slow. Training is consistent, however. Consuming other Wraiths is the most efficient way to gain more power. Also, this is actually not highlander. One does not have to hunt down every single other contestant to reach Apotheosis. Just most of them. Yes, there will be weapons, technology will probably be steampunkish or something - we can discuss that. Warlocks will reach a point that they become superhuman most of the time if they choose to increase their Spirit Value.
Anyway, I feel that I've given a general idea of this. In the past, I've went into insane amounts of detail just to be ignored or get no interest. Now, I'm going to toss this rough idea out there, see who likes it and leave quite a bit of free room to touch up on. Throw in suggestions, alterations to anything but the absolute core, or just show interest.