About Ivashu

Within his dwelling-place at Araka-Kalai, the god Ilvir devotes himself to his strange art— the creation of strange semi-magical beings. These creatures are the called Ivashu.

The Ivashu are also known, more poetically, as The Fatherless Multitude, The Accursed Beasts of the Barren Cycle, and by other epithets.

Ivashu are sexless and infertile and cannot reproduce. When they die, their souls return to Araka-Kalai where they are reincarnated in a new form. They then leave Araka-Kalai and go back out into the world. When they die, they again return to Araka-Kalai — and so on. This endless series of deaths and rebirths is known as The Barren Cycle.

Ivashi: The Divine Tongue

Many Ivashu are intelligent and speak their own language, called Ivashi. All Ivashi who speak use an identical form of this language. Ivashi is extremely difficult for humans to learn, but priests of Ilvir sometimes use it as a Ritual Language.


Most of the Ivashu ideas and writeups here were originally posted on the HârnForum in the "Ivashu for Burning Wheel" thread.

The writeups of the Nolah and Vlasta were developed by Skiohrt (a regular poster on both the HârnForum and Burning Wheel forum), although the versions posted here include some minor modifications.

Ivashu: An Overview

This section of the website is devoted to using the Burning Wheel rules to represent Ivashu in play.

General ideas about creating Ivashu using Burning Wheel rules— including a list of Ivashu Common Traits— can be found below. This page also contains links to writeups of the five main Ivashu types and some brief thoughts on Burning Ivashu Stock.

Common Ivashu Traits

The following traits are common to all Ivashu:

Alien Dt Ivashu Trait

Because they are so strange, communication between Ivashu and non-Ivashu is very difficult. Effects are as described in the Monster Burner, p. 319.

The Brooder's Tongue Dt Ivashu Trait

Intelligent Ivashu speak Ivashi fluently; less intelligent Ivashu may know a few words or appear to understand it. Ivashu with a Perception of 4 or higher possess Ivashi as a skill with an exponent equal to Perception; Ivashi with a Perception of 3 or less possess Ivashi as a skill equal to half of Perception (rounded down).

Beast of the Barren Cycle Ct Ivashu Trait

The souls of Ivashu are bound to the god Ilvir. When an Ivashu dies, its soul is reincarnated into other Ivashu. The effect of this trait in play is up to the discretion of the GM and players.

Obedient to the Brooder's Call Dt Ivashu Trait

As spawn of Ilvir, Ivashu are subject to the god's power. Adherents of Ilvir with the Faithful trait may attempt to command an Ivashu by making a Faith test with a target obstacle equal to the Ivashu's Will. Attempts to command multiple Ivashu impose an additional +1 Ob. per additional Ivashu.

Note: Penalties from the Alien trait do not apply when a faithful Ilviran is seeking to command an Ivashu. This is divine power at work— not social interaction.

Sexless Ct Ivashu Trait

Ivashu are sexless and do not reproduce on their own. They do not understand many concepts so important to humans— like 'child', 'parent', 'male', 'female', and 'family',

The Most Common Ivashu Types

Ilvir creates Ivashu in a myriad of forms, and many are unique. However, there are five types of Ivashu that appear to be created more than others. Individual Burning Wheel write-ups are provided for each of these:

Ivashu Stock: Preliminary Ideas

The writeups of Aklash, Hru, Nolah, Umbathri, and Vlasta on the accompanying pages are what the Burning Wheel Monster Burner calls (on p. 89) "optimal average" specimens. In other words, they are generic examples that possess all the features necessary for the full concept of each of the five major Ivashu types, while lacking any individualization.

It ought to be possible to burn up a more detailed "Ivashu stock", such as the Monster Burner provides for Roden, Trolls, Great Wolves, et al, in order to create truly individualized Ivashu types: a Hru elder, a runt Nolah, a captured Aklash, etc.

At this point, I have no plans of actually doing this, but wished to share the following (very) brief ideas on what a fully formed Ivashu stock might look like:

If anyone has actually burned up an Ivashu stock set of rules for Burning Wheel, please contact me, as I would be delighted to include it here or link to it.