What is echoing here? Why does it influence Entropy? And what would you hear if you could listen to it? The Entropic Echo is one of the metaphysical materials you can collect in the game Control, turned into an “item” to use in your role-playing games. Read more about the idea behind it – and the whole list – here.
How an Entropic Echo is created
Entropy is the measurement of chaos in the cosmos over time. When things are changed – through hands, appendages, or magic – entropy changes. That’s to be expected. And normal. But eventually, magic was discovered that can affect time, and that is less normal. Even less so than magic in general.
Whenever magic is used to affect the past – or the future – entropy changes to account for the new reality made. Since very few beings can sense entropy itself, this usually goes unnoticed. But at the moment of the change, where the entropy has to adapt from one situation to the next without warning or any way to shift gradually, an echo occurs. Like water adapting to a stone that was not there moments ago.
How it can be captured
Since Echos spread out in all directions, it is virtually impossible to capture an echo in its entirety. Instead, those with the capability of using time magic have found ways to capture fragments of it using living crystals, grown to form hollow geometric shapes that are in a constant state of change.
Through this kind of controlled chaos, the part of an Entropic Echo that passes through the crystal can be captured. Once that happens, it can be held for days, if not weeks, depending on the speed with which the crystal cycles through its structures. The main reason for the decay is a soft glow that will emanate from the crystal once an echo is caught.
Those capable of trapping changes in entropy are most likely to use it themselves. It can be obtained should they be defeated, or stolen from their stockpile by the more daring. Some individuals do sell it on the blackest of markets to finance more heinous endeavors, though.
Making use of an Entropic Echo
If there is one thing worse for entropy than time magic changing something in the past, it is unleashing an echo – by breaking the crystal trap. Since there is no event to cause the shift in entropy, things will morph in a random fashion to account for the change. These changes tend to gravitate towards sources of magic. That could be things created by arcane means, or practitioners of the less natural arts.
The changes themselves are never catastrophic but always unexpected. They can startle or disorient a magic wielder, or make an arcane item, like a lock or a construct, unfit for its purpose (adventure hook?). The only way to influence who or what this effect happens to is to release the echo as close to the intended target as possible.
Strength of an Echo
The stronger an echo is – or the more of a single echo has been caught – the bigger the effect once it is unleashed. The strength of the echo plays a bigger role when used against items, since small changes can still startle a living creature. Stronger echos, though, are much harder and expensive to obtain.
Side Effect of an Echo Trap
Paranoid adventurers have taken to carrying empty traps, which still cost quite a fortune to buy. The idea behind that is not only to be able to capture an entropic echo and have it at their disposal in a pinch. But also to know when time-altering magic has been used near them – which could include spells that they would otherwise have remained oblivious to.
If you want to change things and create an echo you should join my Discord to discuss these and other ideas, weird as they may be. There are more Control concepts in this series, so make sure to check them out as well.
Thanks for stopping by, and remember to Be Inspired!