Calendars & Time
Things are very different when it comes to calendar dates and time in Idalos when compared to Earth. Though we've added a few extra things into the Idalos year, they aren't too hard to follow, especially for new players. The first thing we want to talk about is Time Stamping.
Time Stamping your threads is a simple and easy way to keep track of the date your threads take place on. All characters are required to post a 'calendar' of sorts where they list their active threads for all the seasons they've roleplayed in to avoid confusion. Threads may not take place at the same time, but they may take place on the same date. For example: Paul and Jezebel want to do a thread on the 1st Trial of Vhalar when suddenly Paul remembers he has another thread with Steve already set up for the 1st Trial of Vhalar. If Jezebel's thread with Paul takes place during the morning and Steve's thread with Paul takes place during the evening, that would be okay. To time-stamp a thread, the original post of that thread should have a note somewhere saying "Nth Trial of X in the arc Q". That's it. You can also specify the break and bit your thread takes place in with the words "D Break, Bit H". If you're ever confused about what we mean, simply go to a city's forum in the World of Idalos section and look at some of the threads players have started. The Time Stamps will always be at the top of the first post in the thread.
There are 6 seasons that Idalos experiences: Cylus (February and March), Ashan (April and May), Ymiden (June and July), Saun (August and September), Vhalar (October and November), and Zi'da (December and January). These seasons operate just like the seasons on Earth. Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter. However, Idalos has 2 extra seasons. One that is considered summer's peak and another for winter's peak. Each season is meant to parallel the current seasons we experience in the real world.
A year (arc) in Idalos is made up of 492 days (trials).
A trial consists of 24 hours (breaks).
A break has 60 minutes (bits) in it.
A bit is composed of 60 seconds (trills).
The Rebirth Cycle: Cylus and Ashan are the seasons to begin the arc.
The Hot Cycle: Made up of Ymiden and Saun.
The Cold Cycle: Vhalar and Zi'da round out the year.
While the days slowly tick on, the sun begins to sink to the horizon before finally being blocked by one of Idalos's slow orbiting moons. The stationary effect of this moon, however, is partly due to the Ellune and their dormant ruler, Treid. His influence over the moons, and his less than favorable views of Faldrun, prevent the moon from showing any light for 30 trials. A curse he enacted to punish Faldrun for his backhanded and wicked ways, Treid was incapacitated by Audrae before he could remove it. Now the world suffers sunless for 30 trials an Arc, until the light of Ashan touches it once more.
The first few weeks of Ashan are rigidly cold. Though the sun finally makes its appearance from Cylus, it takes many trials before the ice melts away into puddles, blooming flowers and grass. Ashan experiences a cold period, lasting for a quarter of the season before the temperature finally heats up enough to begin sowing crops for the Arc. Ashan is mainly known for it's spring weather, gentle breezes, and the rebirth of plant life. Barren trees slowly sprout buds of leaves and flowers, releasing a green haze of pollen while green grass grows slowly from the wet soil. Dead leaves from the previous season are swallowed up during this cycle, providing nutrients for new life growing from the ground.
Ashan lasts a total of 123 trials (days) while experiencing pretty moderate weather. Later in the season, rain clouds become a common thing, depending on the environment. The temperature begins to heat up while the green haze of pollen dies away and the budding plant life fully sprouts into bushy trees, thick grass, and lively, colorful flowers. As the season closes, the temperature rises, ushering in stronger storms and much hotter weather.
Ymiden is known for its hot, summer weather and strong hurricanes. Though this season isn't as unbearable as Saun, Ymiden provides more cloudless days than cloudy. Astronomers cherish this season for its clear skies, giving way to cool nights full of stars and moonlight. Ymiden is also the season where most festivals take place. Crops planted during Ashan will be harvested before the middle of Ymiden, allowing for enormous feasts, plenty of drink, and an unlimited supply of entertainment.
Ymiden lasts for a total of 83 trials (days). During this time, temperatures remain moderate while oceans and any other body of water become warm enough to swim in. The storms that occur throughout this season can be severe, ranging from hurricanes, typhoons, tornadoes, and monsoons. However, each region will experience the effects of this season differently.
As Ymiden closes out, Saun begins, bringing with it another sun. Saun is known as the hottest season in Idalos with high temperatures that can become unbearable to work in. During this season, night time provides a small relief to the heat and though the temperatures aren't so excruciatingly hot, exposure to the sun without proper water and shade as well as rest can be fatal.
Saun lasts a total of 40 trials (days). It is recommended during this time to keep a close eye on all children, livestock, and crops. Because of the heat, water will need to be readily available and distributed frequently, as to avoid potential stroke or loss of life from overheating. Any storms experienced during this season are much more powerful than those produced during Ymiden.
Vhalar is described as the season of harvest, where vegetables, herbs, and other produce are ripe for reaping one last time. During the beginning of this season, the temperature is still fairly hot, even though the second sun has moved away and returned the night to the world. As the trials progress, the weather cools while the leaves slowly change from thriving green to lively red, yellow, auburn, and purple. The grass wilts and hardly any color is saved by the end of the season except for the pines and other shrubs and trees. Vhalar takes on a chill during its final days before sinking into the cold season of Zi'da.
Vhalar lasts a total of 123 trials (days). It is a festive time for most cities as the temperature mid-season is quite enjoyable.
Zi'da rolls in, bringing with it the cold winds of death. This season was named in honor of the Immortal Daia, after she was struck down at the hands of a human, thus manifesting the war between deities presently. Zi'da is a cool season that only progressively gets colder. Very few flora survive during this time and the trees, barren and lifeless. Animals have settled down to hibernate while the only real noise that disturbs the peaceful silence of Zi'da are the humans that walk about and the Immortals that fight for control. Snow is common during this season, along with freezing rain and blizzards.
Zi'da lasts for a total of 93 trials (days). Though it is considered a cold season, the weather and chill of Zi'da pales in comparison to Cylus.
Dates of Cycle Changes
February 1st: First day of the Rebirth Cycle. The first day of the Rebirth Cycle also marks the arc change. The last day for placeholders in the new cycle is May 30th.
June 1st: First day of the Hot Cycle. The last day for placeholders in the Hot Cycle is September 29th.
October 1st: First day of the Cold Cycle. The last day for placeholders in the End Cycle is January 30th.
Placeholders are topics posted near the end of the current cycle that, for one reason or another, won't get properly started before the official end of said cycle. Rules regarding placeholders stands that you cannot have more than 5 per season (10 per cycle) and you must title and date the placeholder (Example: Title - The World As We See It, Date - 110th Trial of Ashan, Arc 718). There is no set time limit for when the thread needs to be filled out, only that the placeholder is made in this way.
Please note All characters in a thread must either have posts or post placeholders before season change. It is not acceptable for one pc to put a placeholder, then three more to join after season change. Unless you have a post or placeholder in a thread before season change which adheres to the rules above, you are not in the thread. If you failed to post placeholders before season change, please contact your local mod to see if they have any available to give to you.
The Moons of Idalos
Three moons orbit the planet thanks to the Immortal Treid, who would not have Faldrun outdo him with his twin suns.
The largest of the trio is Zilis. Should one set foot on this moon, they would have a hard time getting off. Its surface is believed to be made of a clay-like substance as the moon appears flatter at the top and bottom but wider and more round towards its sides. Of all three moons, Zilis spins the slowest. It is the moon responsible for the lack of sunlight during the season of Cylus. In the middle of the three is the moon Rahkrii, known for its reddish tint and peculiar surface. Rahkrii appears to be pockmarked with bright, almost yellow spots that lead some early Idalosian astronomers to believe it was a third sun. The third and smallest moon is Telva and is the most often seen of the three moons. It is light gray in color with few if any craters and an oblong shape. There is much debate about whether or not it is a true moon due to its shape.
During the season of Cylus, Zilis remains directly in between the suns and the planet, obscuring the light in such a way that the entire planet is enveloped in twilight.