Housing is mandatory, but there's a lot of choice both in terms of where a character can live and in what kind of home. You'll need to consider things like:
- your character's financial standing,
- where they work (since transportation? in Elysia? is limited and they'll normally need to live quite close to their job),
- and where the best roleplaying opportunities are (see the Setting FAQ).
Note: Please take a look at the Common Features before designing and describing your house. Elysian homes are somewhat different from those of Earth. (You can also get a better idea of what houses in the other realms look like from the Place? pages.)
There are four tiers in this system, each one containing a certain level of housing, be it Tier Three's estates and villas or Tier One's basic apartments. You have the freedom to choose from a variety of homes within each tier, but must pay to upgrade or downgrade between them.
Each tier brings with it its own prestige, privileges, and hindrances. The better the facilities of your character's home, the better their prospects -- but the more they'll have to work to pay the bills. Conversely, the poorer they are, the more difficult it will be for them to study and advance their skills? or even survive.
How to buy a house
|Moving between Tiers|
|Red = cost of ↑ Green = refund for ↓|
Skill packs?[^Packs cannot be combined to purchase better housing. If you want to upgrade, you'll need to use cash?.^] include an allotment for housing so that when you submit your character's application, you'll choose a home from the appropriate tier. This means you can select any type of house within the appropriate tier.
- Starter/Adept: Tier 0`-1
- Modest: Tier 0`-2
- Heroic: Tier 0`-3
After you've made the initial purchase using your creation pack, you can choose to upgrade (or downgrade) your character's home using cash?. There will be an upgrade fee if you want to move up the tiers (or an 80% refund if you want to downgrade), but you can move around within the same tier for free. (See chart at right for cost of upgrades between tiers.)
(:toggle id="examples" show="Click here to show examples of up/downgrades." hide="Click here to hide the examples.":)
- Saundra wants to move from her shack (Tier Zero) to an apartment (Tier One), so her player must pay an out-of-character upgrade fee of ζ500. In-character, Saundra would pay whatever the apartment cost.
- Marik has found a double barrel (Tier One) that has a better view and is closer to his job than his current apartment (also Tier One). There's no upgrade fee because both houses are in Tier One, but Marik would have to pay the IC costs of the new place.
- Dennis has fallen on hard times so he has to give up his domus (Tier Two) and move into a smaller flat (Tier One). His player receives an 80% refund (ζ2,400) for moving down a tier, but Dennis himself would have to pay for the new flat from the sale of his domus.
Once you've decided on the type of home your character will live in and where it's located, you can post a thread in the Housing forum that describes both the interior and exterior setting. This step is highly recommended as it will enable other characters to visit yours at home, but it's not mandatory (though filling out the Housing section of the application template is).
|Tier 0 |
These dwellings (if they can be called that) are the most basic shelters available. There is absolutely no prestige from this tier, and most Elysians will either pity or completely ignore you. Living in these dwellings will make it difficult to survive, let alone advance your skills.
|On the streets||Homelessness suits some characters, like wanderers or the more feral of the Therians (or even just the poor), but living on the streets (or in the wild) is incredibly dangerous for any number or reasons (bandits and monsters to name a few). Some towns won't permit "loitering" so the homeless will be swiftly ejected by the Town Guard?. |
Note: If your character is homeless, you will be expected to roleplay the consequences (like not having bathing facilities or anywhere to cook a proper meal). Not roleplaying these consequences will prompt the staff to contact you.
|Camping equipment||A sleeping bag and a canvas tent is all your character owns by way of a roof over their heads, and it's barely a step up from being completely homeless. You won't be permitted to camp within town or village boundaries and will be swiftly ejected by the Town Guard if you try -- but at least having a tent over your head will deter some of the smaller predators and pests.|
|Shack||A very small house, typically having only a single room and being in a state of disrepair, shacks are usually made of cheap, local wood but can be custom built (which is to say your character can build it themselves or get some help from their friends). They are most often found in run-down and poor neighbourhoods or on open farmland where they serve as shelter for farmhands. They usually don't have heat crystals and only cloth coverings for the windows.|
|Cave||Underground quarters in the Rowan Caverns?, suitable only for Therians. Quarters here are somewhat poky due to underground space being at a premium, and they share a communal living space (so really your own cave is just a bedroom). There are dangers of underground monsters and cave-ins as well.|
|Tier 1 |
These dwellings have one or two small bedrooms with a shared bathroom, a kitchen and a dining or living room. They don't come with land but pets are allowed at the owner/landlord's discretion. The majority of the single population live in these, along with the poorer citizens, so there's still not much prestige to be had. They're much better than being homeless, though.
|Mews||A row of stables or falconries, usually with carriage houses below and living quarters above. Mews are usually built around a paved yard or court, or along a street behind larger town houses. They are most common in cities and towns that see a lot of traffic and where mounts, carriages and carts need shelter overnight. Occupants don't have to work at the stables below in order to live here, but they do have to put up with the smell.|
|Barrel house||A narrow dwelling where the rooms are lined up one behind the other (see Wikipedia's floorplan). They are normally built in tightly-packed rows directly onto the street either in poorer areas or where being close to work is essential for efficiency (such as in mining towns).|
|Double barrel||The same as a barrel house, but with a hallway down the side to make entering rooms easier and to allow for more privacy per room. These are most often built in tightly-packed rows just like the barrels, but sometimes have a small surrounding garden or a short front yard, thus being slightly better and slightly more expensive than single barrels.|
|Insula||A row of tenement buildings where the ground floor is used for shops and businesses while the upper floors (usually only one, but at most two) are used for apartments. They are only found in the busy commercial districts of the larger towns and cities where craftsmen and traders live above their (work)shops for convenience.|
|Apartment||A relatively self-contained unit in a building designed specifically for such use. Apartment blocks are rarely more than three stories high, and never more than four. They are usually found only in major cities.|
|Flat||The same as an apartment in terms of space, but flats are originally designed as a single house and later divided for subletting where the owner's family has moved away or they can't afford to keep their home intact. These are most often found in towns and cities but rarely in the busy urban centres where space is at too much of a premium for the non-wealthy to afford.|
|Double decker||A two-storey apartment building where each floor normally consists of a single apartment, although two apartments per floor is not uncommon in poorer areas. They tend to look like (semi-)detached or terraced houses from the outside.|
|Triple decker||Like a double decker but with three stories.|
|Cabin||A small log cabin, normally built to spec from cheap local wood in a rural or semi-rural area. They are usually open-plan and rustic.|
|Small Treehouse||A small tree-top dwelling, the equivalent size of a cabin, grown and Shaped from the boughs and main trunk of a large tree. They're usually only found in the middle of a forest, most often in the Fae?. They require a Dryad's skills to Shape them initially, but should be sturdy enough to last for years afterward. Only Nymphs and their kin are permitted (by Sylvan law) to live in treehouses.|
|Tier 2 |
These dwellings have up to four medium-sized bedrooms with a shared bathroom, a kitchen and a dining or living room. The master bedroom sometimes has an en suite bathroom, though that normally depends on the type of house (cottages won't, for instance, but a detached house probably would).
They don't all come with land but pets are allowed at the owner/landlord's discretion. Many families and merchants live in these, being considered middle-class, and there's quite a bit of prestige associated with them. They're the best homes available if you're not filthy rich.
|Cottage||A modest dwelling only found in rural or semi-rural areas, these rustic cottages are typically made of stone with a thatched roof.|
|Ranch house||A one-storey rural dwelling designed to house large families, ranch houses are usually built on a small plot of workable land between half and one acre. This land is usually not farmed but instead may be used for grazing stable stock.|
|Stubby-legs||A one-storey house built on wooden stilts that hold the building two to five feet off the ground. They are most common in regions like southern Daire? where homes must make room for migratory animals. Legged houses can never be built of anything heavier than wood, and normally have thatched roofs to keep down the weight.|
|Long-legs||A one-storey house like Stubby-legs, Long-legs are built on wooden stilts that hold the building between five and ten feet off the ground. They are built only in areas like the Nubian Delta? or around Lake Cora? where major flooding is common.|
|Detached house||A single-storey dwelling built on a very small plot of land (less than half an acre) depending on proximity to the city/town centre. These are only available in urban or suburban areas (with the former being much more expensive).|
|Domus||Domi are single-storey homes, normally square or rectangular and built around an open-air atrium where guests are greeted. They are found only in warmer climates and the wealthier suburban neighbourhoods. Much of the interior is open plan and highly aesthetic.|
|Farmhouse||One-storey rural dwellings designed to house large families, farmhouses are usually built as the focal point on a plot of one to five acres of arable land used for growing a mixture of crops. (There are usually a few farm animals wandering freely, too.) Extended families may build a couple of smaller versions on the same plot close to the main house, but these would be cottages, shacks or cabins rather than a farmhouse.|
|Large Treehouse||A larger version of the Small Treehouse, the equivalent size of a farmhouse.|
|Tier 3 |
These dwellings have six to eight large and medium-sized bedrooms with at least half that many en suite bathrooms and two or three shared. They come with a kitchen large enough for a staff, a dining room, a living area and often several other, smaller rooms in addition (such as a receiving room, parlour, workroom for laundry, and so on). They are usually built on one to five acres of land which is worked by a staff for income as well as to provide aesthetic surroundings.
Houses in Tier 3 are luxurious and thus owned by the wealthy or those in positions of power.
|Villa||A large two to three storey dwelling, normally square or rectangular, built around an open-air plaza that features a fountain, statue or even a small pool as its focal point. Much of the interior of a villa is open-plan, airy, and highly aesthetic.|
|Estate||A tract of land (between one and five acres) belonging to a wealthier citizen or someone holding an official position (such as a city councillor?). The land is usually workable but also aesthetic, giving the appearance of both luxury and privacy. Estates offer convenience as they're normally available fairly close to the town and city centres. The interior is usually much closer than a villa with rooms being closed off for privacy, and they're better suited for the milder or chillier climates.|
Not sure the following are feasible, but I'm leaving them in here for future addition just in case.
|Waterdome||An underwater dome Shaped from coral or limestone (or other such underwater materials). Waterdomes require either a powerful Nyad's continuous efforts to shield it from the water, or are inhabitable only by the self-same who shield themselves rather than their homes.|
|Firedome||A Nereid-fashioned dome made of lava and rock, built into the inner walls of a volcano.|
- Houses in Elysia and Zanarya? are never more than four storeys high. They are typically sprawling one-storey structures, except in towns and cities where more people have to pack into a smaller space (and even then, more than three storeys is uncommon).
- Homes in the White City? can go up to six storeys but are fat and require thick walls to accommodate the landing of dragons. They are made of white stone from the local mountains and have flat roofs that also serve as a terrace or roof-top garden.
- Houses do not have basements.
- There are no chimneys. Heat and light comes from crystals, or in Zanarya from elemental technology, thus removing the need to vent an open flame.
- There are three main building materials in Elysia, depending on the house's proximity to resources and the wealth of the local area and home owner. Towns that are built closer to the forests are most likely to be built from wood, while mountainous villages will feature a lot of stone or even be carved into the mountainside itself (as with Anyeli fortresses). River towns may have clay for brick- and tile-making, but poorer areas will most likely stick with thatch or wooden shingles for roofs. If someone has enough money to cover the costs of not only buying but also transporting other materials, these limitations won't apply.
- Many Elysian homes have verandas (especially those of only one or two storeys) and/or balconies (if more than two storeys high). This is especially true in warmer climates, but less so for water- and marsh-based towns (like Danurai? or the Nubian Delta?) where the extra weight would prove too much for the stilted foundations.
Where to Live
While there are whole populations living on the Elysian mainland?, people can be found in other realms and regions too so you can base your characters pretty much anywhere. (For roleplaying purposes, I advise that PCs are based near a portal so they can travel freely, but this is less of a problem if your character has a mount or access to transportation that can make cross-country journeys go faster.)
You can get fairly creative in terms of your character's address (as long as the street and/or house names suit the overall setting, of course), but it should include the house number (or name where appropriate), the street name if applicable (many rural settlements, especially the Nymph communes, do not have streets or labels), and the town and region it's in. We don't expect a post/zip code (or anything like it), however; we're not that specific.
#2A Forest Road, Alexshire 17 Mapleleaf Court, Apartment #2B, New Alexandria Greenview Estate, Espur
If you need help finding or creating an address or deciding where you want your character to live, you can contact Emma? privately, ask around in the chatbox, or post a thread in the Help board. You are also very welcome to ask other members if they'd like to share a street or village with you.