Dubstep

[Lore] Yokai Expanded

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Hello everybody! Friendly neighborhood Dubstep here with another lore article! Now as you know most all of these are written in character to give you a general idea of what a race if like. This one however is going to be a bit different. What I’ve written here is information on the mysterious Yokai race! In Character, they’re meant to be more of a mystery, not seen super often, and so I left details on their looks vague for the most part. But this has brought up many questions for people as to the limitations for their looks, size, colouration, and other odds and ends about our mischievous spirit friends. So here I’ll be doing my best to answer some of those burning questions and give you a BIT more Out of Character insight into the workings of the Yokai! As more Yokai species come to be acknowledged, this list will be updated to the best of my ability.


 

General Yokai Information:

 

This information applies across all Yokai! Be sure to give this a looksee first.

 

Magic: All yokai are capable of magic. The vast majority of Yokai are of average or above power with their magic, but some (especially elders or those who dedicate themselves, or sometimes those who are just really lucky) can expect to be quite a deal more powerful than their brethren. That being said, please be responsible just as you would with Unicorns or Qilin/Longma, don’t go Alicorn Black Stallion overboard!


 

Colouration: When making your yokai, you may feel inclined to stick with the natural colours based on the type of animal the yokai is. I want to let you all know right now that there is No Limitation on colours that a yokai can have. If you want a Jorōgumo with the colouration of the Fruit Stripes Zebra, go for it!


 

Markings: Just like with colouration, you’re not limited on the kinds of markings your yokai can have. They can be plain and solid coloured, or they can have many swirls or polka dots or whatever you might think of. A good inspiration for markings on yokai could come from the Okami series!


 

Hitodama: Hitodama are magical balls of fire that yokai can summon with enough power or effort. Hitodama can, among other things, drain the energy of those close to them, mesmerize those who stare into them, change colour at a whim or by mood, and can be used to hide the Yokai’s presence for a time. Passively they don’t require much effort to keep around, but actively using their magical properties take energy proportional to the magic used. Kitsune have their own unique variant known as Kitsune-bi, which they can call upon much more easily.


 

Natural Affinity: It’s not uncommon for Yokai’s appearances to be affected by the places that they live. Some show this off in the form of flowers growing out of places, or even their steps sometimes leaving patches of short-lived blossoms. Those that live in warmer climates can sometimes shimmer like a mirage, or those in coastal or aquatic regions can appear to be damp even when completely dry. Just as some examples.


 

Pact Magic: Yokai can form magical pacts with mortals, bestowing the mortal a portion of their power while also increasing their own. These pacts however come with a vow or a promise of some sort that the Yokai and other part of the pact agrees to, should one break this vow, an agreed upon detriment befalls the one who broke it. Such as temporary loss of magic until reparations are made, some sort of transformation, or any number of things. Even ‘bloodline’ curses that could affect generations down the road.


 

Vows: Vows are similar to the Pact Magic that yokai can invoke, but only require the yokai making a promise to itself. So long as they keep this promise, such as protecting an area for example, they are blessed with more power or the power to keep the promise in general. In most cases there are strict stipulations that must be kept to uphold a Vow. Should they break this vow however, they’re struck with setbacks much like they would if they broke a Pact, sometimes worse as their magic turns against them.





 

Bakeneko/Nekomata:

 

As mentioned in the main article, Bakeneko and Nekomata take the shape of large house cats of sorts, such as Scottish Folds, Munchkins, Tabbies, etc. How large is likely to be a question however. Without going into super full detail, the average adult size is that of a large dog, with some growing larger. But still not QUITE as large as say, a lion or a tiger.

 

The difference between a Bakeneko and a Nekomata is small, but important. A Bakeneko is a young Nekomata, due to the difference in their power and magic levels, they’re considered to be ‘semi-separate’ despite being the same race. When a Bakeneko matures, its tail splits into two indicating it’s now a Nekomata. Most Nekomata tails glow with a ghostly sort of wisp around the tips, but not always. Both Bakeneko and Nekomata can have glowing eyes or flowing bits of fur across their bodies, but not all do. Unlike some other yokai, Bakeneko nor Nekomata develop antlers or horns. Some Bakeneko/Nekomata walk on their hindlegs, but most prefer all four.



 

Hebi:

 

Hebi are ghostly looking snakes. As I mentioned in the article they look as though they’re made out of mist and can shift between corporeal and incorporeal at will. Just like real life snakes they have a wide variety of shapes and sizes. Cobras, pythons, anacondas, what have you. Hebi can sometimes be seen with horns or antlers, and rarely with small feathery wings that are more for hovering or gliding than actual flight.



 

Inugami:

 

The Inugami are floating doggos, despite not having wings, they can fly just fine! Their head appears corporeal and can resemble that of any dog breed you can think of. Their body however is different and appears almost ghostly and stretches quite a distance. This length varies based on the Inugami of course. An Inugami based on a Whippet will be a lot longer than one based on a Corgi, but both of them will be quite longer than their mundane counterparts. Head colours and body colours don’t often match. They are capable of having horns and are often seen with glowing eyes. The most common for head colour is black and eye glow/head marking is red, but this is not always the case. Feel free to go with a different choice, especially if you feel red and black is edgy!



 

Ha-Inu:

 

The other half of the flying doggo brothers. Ha-Inu much more closely resemble their mundane counterparts, albeit twice their size on average, larger ‘breeds’ sometimes matching ponies in size. They sport, as mentioned, large fluffy wings that allow them flight. And while white is the most common colouration, it’s perfectly normal for them to be other colours or multiple colours as well. It’s rather uncommon for Ha-Inu to have either horns or glowing eyes, but fluffy flowy bits are fairly commonplace.



 

Kamaitachi:

 

The mustelid yokai covers a lot of different species (save for Badgers, we’ll get to that) such as ferrets, weasels, otters, stoats, etc. They don’t sport wings or horns, nor do they have glowing eyes. But are, like all yokai, larger in size than their counterparts. Though being so small on average already, it wouldn’t be a surprise that they could be mistaken for just large mustelids. The interesting thing with Kamaitachi is that they are always born as triplets. Though not always identical. The trio almost always sticks together, and most apps will be Three-In-One, but if you feel it’s too difficult to have a Three-In-One app (as it would require some extra effort and description) you are more than welcome to app a single Kamaitachi and possibly seek out others to play the other two. Kamaitachi walk on their hind legs just fine, but are also capable of dropping to run on all fours.



 

Kitsune:

 

Now most of this is likely self explanatory due to the prevalence of Kitsune in various media, but for posterity's sake, I’ll write stuff down anyway. Kitsune can resemble any sort of fox. They can have any number of tails from one to nine on average, as mentioned some especially old or especially powerful Kitsune can sometimes have ten or more. It’s not super common though, so be sure to have a good reason for it if you have more than nine! Kitsune can summon Fox-Fire Will-o-Wisps, or Kitsune-bi, at will and these magical fires can be of any colours. Other yokai are able to summon something similar, called Hitodama, but not as easily as a Kitsune can.

 

Kitsune also have a little ball they wear around a collar on their neck. No these do not actually contain the Kitsune’s Life Force nor does it magically control them against their will. It does however have a magical tie to them, containing a watered down portion of the magic they can do and can affect them aversely the longer they are away from it, but over time a Kitsune can get through this ‘withdrawal’ and be fine without it. Though some Kitsune will still do whatever they can to get it back. Kitsune can have glowing eyes and flowing bits, but horns are extremely rare.



 

Mujina:

 

Mujina are great shapeshifters, much like Changelings are. They could be you or me, or Frank from accounting! But as for how they look when not disguised, Mujina resemble badgers. More often than not they walk on two legs rather than four. More often still they remain disguised. Mujina are, as with other yokai, bigger than their mundane counterparts. But in their case it’s only slightly so. Mujina don’t have wings or horns, and are rarely ever seen with glowing eyes. Mujina are also often chubby.




 

Ōkami:

 

The majestic Ōkami resemble wolves of course! Any kind of wolf you can think of. Nearly all Ōkami’s fur is luxurious and clean, you’d be hard pressed to find an Ōkami with a dirty or messy coat. This fur is quite often blessed by wispy or billowy portions, as are their tails or the gorgeous manes they can possess. Ōkami can possess horns, antlers, or glowing eyes, but not wings.



 

Tanuki:

 

Tanuki, as mentioned in the main article, are chubby raccoon or raccoon-dog like yokai! Most carry around straw hats or leaves upon their forehead. These leaves aren’t actual leaves, but rather a magical construct of sorts made by the Tanuki as a conduit for much of their magics. Tanuki very rarely have glowing eyes, but aren’t seen with horns or wings, nor do they have much billow fur. Some however are seen with two tails.



 

Jorōgumo:

 

The spider Yokai, as one would come to expect, can look like any sort of spider. These arachnid-like yokai range in size from ‘small dog’ to ‘average pony’ with some variation. Some have almost feline like faces, while others more closely resemble that of ponies or other races. What the faces do have in common is that they have eight eyes. Occasionally Jorōgumo will also possess mandibles in addition to any other teeth they may have. Glowing eyes are sometimes seen in Jorōgumo, but not horns/antlers or wings. Flowing bits of fur happen occasionally. Some Jorōgumo also have a more ‘taur’ like appearance, having an upper body somewhat like that of a pony or griffon attached the the body of a spider.



 

Yosuzumi:

 

One of the possible Yokai not listed in the main article are the Yosuzumi. Yosuzumi are bird like Yokai that can resemble a number of flight-capable birds, like crows, robins, pigeons, hawks, and many many others. These Yokai are often quite larger than their mundane counterparts, but it’s rare to see any bigger than an average pony. Glowing eyes aren’t seen in Yosuzumi, but occasionally antlers or horns are. Flowing fur is...kinda out since they have feathers, but shimmery or glowing feathers are not unheard of.



 

Sarugami:

 

Another unlisted Yokai are the primate-like Sarugami. Most Sarugami have a monkey-like appearance, but can have the form of other primates such as apes, orangutans, or lemurs! These Yokai are fairly tall; an adult Sarugami standing up straight can match height with that of a teenage dragon on average. Glowing eyes are possible but not super common. Their fur is usually more fluffy than flowy, but again certainly possible. Wings aren’t seen, but horns and antlers show up now and again. Smugness and challenging the Serpent Council is optional.



 

Onikuma:

 

The Onikuma are large bear Yokai. They’re not really bigger than their mundane counterparts, as most bears are already large enough as is. Of course, they can resemble any type of bear! Onikuma are hefty and strong despite being fairly chubby looking. It’s not a good idea to pick a fight with an Onikuma. Onikuma can have horns, glowing eyes, and billowing fur. Wings are exceedingly rare but not impossible. However they are not proportional to the Onikuma’s size, small enough that they cannot fly, only hover at best. Sorry, no dropbears.



 

Katakirauwa:

 

Katakirauwa are Pig Yokai. More specifically they resemble piglets and are about the size of such. Katakirauwa sport only one ear and leave no shadows. They’re quiet but sneaky little Yokai, often stealing things of (mostly) no consequence, then returning them the next day in odd places. Katakirauwa have little in the way of fur (fuzz at best) so no billowing coats for them, alas. Glowing eyes are common, though horns and wings are not. Some Katakirauwa keep balls (or in some cases large cherry bombs they’ve found or made) to roll around on from one place to another.



 

Bakenezumi:

 

Rodent like Yokai, Bakenezumi cover a wide range between tiny mice to the large capybara. The smallest Bakenezumi is still a bit bigger than an average mouse, and one based off of a capybara can sometimes get as big as a pony itself. Bakenezumi are much stronger than their (usually) small appearance lets on. Even the smallest amongst them is capable of lifting swords at least three to four times their size. Bakenezumi can have glowing eyes, billowing fur, and even horns or antlers!



 

Gyokuto:

 

Probably among the cuddliest looking Yokai are the Gyokuto, the rabbit Yokai! These Yokai cover the Lagomorph family, rabbits, pikas, hares, etc. Their often long ears are tufted with wispy softly glowing fur. Some Gyokuto have antlers or horns, leading them to be mistaken for Jackalopes. Other parts of their fur can be wispy and have a soft glow to them, but it’s uncommon (Not impossible) for their eyes to glow. Most Gyokuto have a soft spot for Mochi and carry around large wooden mortar and pestle to make some for themselves or travelers.



 

Nomuyagi:

 

Nomuyagi cover sheep and goats, as such they can cover the variety of those! From the large Suffolk Sheep to the tiny Pygmy Goat! Horns and antlers are very common among Nomuyagi. Billowing fleece isn’t quite as common but can happen, as can glowing eyes. Nomuyagi often get along quite well with Tanuki as they both share a common love of the drink. So don’t be too surprised if you see a sheep carrying a keg around on its back during a visit to the outer regions of Neighpon.



 

Koma-Inu/Shīsā:

 

Koma-Inu and Shīsā are two separate, regional names for the same kind of Yokai. While in real life these represent the Lion Dog guardians of temples, for our purposes these cover Large Cats as well, such as tigers, lions, and panthers. Billowing fur, especially manes, is common among them. Antlers and horns are rare but not unheard of, and glowing eyes are common. Usually Koma-Inu are born as a set of twins, one male and one female, but single births aren’t impossible.



 

Gyūki:

 

Gyūki are bovine Yokai, covering cows and oxen and such. Just like their mundane cousins, Gyūki are hefty and strong. Horns and antlers are commonplace amongst them. Wispy fur is not particularly common, but can happen. More often than not their tails have wispy glowing fur on the tip. Eye glow is common as well. Wings are also possible.

 

 

 

 

Yokai Funfact:

 

Yokai can't say 'Moshi moshi'! A little known fact outside of Polohomo, but a 'sure fire' way to tell if someone's more than they appear is to greet them with "Moshi moshi"! If they reply back with only "Moshi" they could very well be a Yokai in disguise.

Edited by Dubstep
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