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I've been thinking about the naming conventions and metaphyics behind MA recently. When somone mentioned that one of the methods that gold faction Sidreals used to teach Solars was learning the Solar created animal styles, that got me to thinking. I ended up comeing up with the following:

Normal charms focus on manipulating internal essence to do things.
Sorcery focuses on using your internal essence to directly manipulate the external essence of the world.
Martial Arts focuses on realigning your essence so that it is similar to something.

The Solars at some point decided that they were going to focus on aligning their essences to mimic the essence flows of animals, possibly at the urging of their spouses.

The Sidereals focused on aligning themselves with astrolgical signs and phenomina. This better mix plus the thousands of years of research gave rise to SMA.

The Terrestrial created MAs are, unsuprisingly, generally elementally aligned. Any that aren't were probably degined by others to enhance their capabilities as warriors or have evolved since the first age.

Abyssals seem to have chosen to mimic those creatures that dwell in the underworld with them, i.e. ghosts.

Alchemicals likewise have few choices on things to imitate when they create MA styles, so most of those should be based on the custodians or their connection to Autochthon.

There are no cannon styles that were definitly created by Lunars, so I'm not really sure what the general convention for types of Lunar styles should be.

As for stuff like Dreaming Pearl and Ebon Shadow which don't fit the general convention, those styles were probably created by master martial artists exploring the limits of their chosen disipline or by offbeat people who liked exploring the fringes of MA.

Now I realise that practically all of this is just a big pile of DUH to most people, but I figured it would be good to have a list of the general naming conventions of the various MAs out there. Plus, using these you can figure out who created the style just by hearing the name, most of the time. So, any thoughts on this, suggestions for what the Lunars should imitate, or flames?

Lunars should not be the progenitors of Martial Arts; they have a superior emulative capacity in their own Charms. - willows

They do have superior emulative techniques with their charms, but I'd still be suprised if one of them didn't work on it in his spare time at some point during the first age just to see what all those Sidereals were so happy about. However, that probably lets out a Lunar naming convention. --BrilliantRain
Hey, um, when you're replying to a discussion, it's a good idea to not check the minor-edit box. Remember, minor edits are those that only you care about! If you suppose that you're the only one that is interested in your contribution to a Discussion, maybe you should act to bolster your self-esteem! - willows

So, more on this stuff.

I don't think that the choice to match their Martial Arts to ...different stuff... has anything to do with the superiority of SMA; it has to do with the Sidereal implementation, which makes SMA similar enough to Sidereal Charms that they have a special advantage using it. Similarly, I think the other patterns aren't really patterns regarding the tendencies of creators to make styles with particular thematics, so much as, "This would be an appropriate Style to publish along with Splat X." - willows

I have to agree with Willow, the martial arts styles shouldn't be by the theme. Terresterial doesn't need to be elemental, what they do need to be is to be straight forward, siimple if you will. While Celestial can be anything under the Heaven, being the ideal of something... say animals because the martial artist feels that certain animals ROCK hard, and they think it'd be keen to have a style that matches their Lunar mates/lovers, or say the Deathlord eyes the 'vermin' of the underworld and creates a style based on the Hungry Ghost. Sidereal style is literally about the big picture and how you interact with said big picture, at least that's my impression. Of course, I feel that Lunars are there to be nerfed... in the martial arts field. Naming conventions in the end should be something that suits the style itself, not the other way around.

Metagame-wise, it all falls into what fits the book that the style is going to be found in. ~ Haku