Sep. 18th, 2016

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Awakening is a chance occurrence - you can't control whether or not it happens. Once you've Awakened, though, becoming a Guardian is a choice. Nobody will force you to put your life on the line to fight monsters. Those who do choose to fight, however, are recruited by a group called the Guardian Association, which manages all Guardians in Nistona, scheduling their activities and monitoring their condition.

Guardians have two main duties: Patrols and emergency missions. Patrols are weekly forays into the Minus World to find and eliminate monsters before they can become a threat to Nistona. Monsters will often pass through the barrier in the Minus World, then lurk there, gathering their forces before making an attack - the Guardian patrols are to prevent this, rooting out nests before they become a serious threat. In order to patrol safely, Guardians almost always operate in teams, ranging from two to six members.

Patrol schedules and routes change regularly - if they remain static for too long, the monsters learn the patterns and start to evade them. The broad objective of a patrol is to follow your route, investigating any signs of monster activity, and find and eliminate the monsters. If the monsters become too dangerous to overcome, retreat - they aren't yet invading Nistona, so you can run away, note the nest location, and the Guardian Association can send a larger force to root it out.

Emergency missions happen when monsters try to invade Nistona directly. The first sign of this is strange glitches in reality, at which point the clock is already ticking. When a team discovers a monster intrusion in process, they must immediately gather, alerting the Guardian Association if possible, then transform - while transformed, Guardians can sense the energy given off by an Ingress being expanded by monsters. From there, the Guardian team should cross over into the Minus World and wipe out the monsters before they manage to cross over into our world.

For whatever reason, Ingress locations are correlated strongly with human population density. Most Ingresses appear in Kastad, with a few appearing in other towns, but Ingresses in the countryside are vanishingly rare (every town has at least one Guardian team assigned to it for this reason). On an emergency mission, retreating is often more dangerous than staying to fight - if you fall back without stopping the monsters, then they'll reach Nistona, where Guardian powers are much weaker. At that point, some monsters will go wild and attack anything they can find, but some others will charge straight for the Pearl. Thankfully, their are no recorded instances of one reaching the Pearl - one can only imagine what disaster might unfold if they did.

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