This is the first part of a series of articles covering the seven test disciplines. The seven disciplines are; Architect, Art & Music, Body, Harmony, Leadership, Thought, and Worship. It is believed that if a citizen of Egypt could reach Oracle rank in all seven disciplines, mastering all seven disciplines, then they would achieve immortality. If the civilization should achieve this goal, the world would become a Utopia. Each discipline has seven ranks and seven related tests. The seven ranks in each discipline are: Student, Prentice, Journeyman, Scribe, Master, Sage, and Pharaoh's Oracle. In every discipline, there is one test that must be completed to achieve Initiation, and unlocks the seven tests for that discipline. One of the most enjoyable features of passing a test, for many an Egyptian citizen, is the lightning strike. Each time you pass any of the forty nine tests or seven initiates you are awarded with a lightning strike that hits your character and lifts him up off the ground before dropping you back down to the ground, à la Highlander. This signals your passing of the test for all within sight. In a unique feature, each telling tries to build a monument in each discipline before the end of the telling. Each completed monument is inscribed with a test idea. The test idea is then developed, and is implemented for the next Tale, replacing one of the last Tale's tests. This way, each telling always has several new tests that no player has ever seen. So each Tale is unique and unlike any other.
Architect can be a very competitive discipline. Architects are always about building bigger, better, or unique. Every Architect, at heart, wishes to build that one building that will be unique and be their legacy to greatness. In ATITD, this is no different. The discipline of Architect is quite resource intensive, and also usually requires working with groups, or subcontracting help. Some of the tests of Architect require outbuilding your competition, directing large groups for huge projects, or building bigger than your competition. The later tests can sometimes require large groups of 50 or more, all requiring coordination and direction. Disciplines of Architect compete to build bigger and better buildings.
Art and Music is exactly what it says, art and music. In ATITD this covers some unique fields and some of the most interesting tests. Art and Music can be a fickle discipline though. It requires a lot of time and is very subjective. An artist or musician designs and develops according to their artistic vision, but their work will be judged by their fellow Egyptians. So, an artist must take into account the tastes of their peers and viewers as well, when designing or developing a new piece of art or music. This discipline is considered by many to be their favorite due to the unique, varied and beautiful diversity of the tests. Disciplines of Art and Music develop their work to please their Egyptian audiences.
Body is one of the more solitary disciplines; but one of the most rewarding. The body discipline is about exploration and discovery. Avid Body disciples are usually some of the most knowledgeable players about the unique landscape of Egypt. The test of Body provides stat boosts which are desired by all Egyptians, so the competition can be quite numerous. Disciplines of Body explore some of the most remote and unique locations in Egypt, view some of the most unique creatures and fauna that Egypt has to offer, and even get the chance to swim in lakes and rivers of Egypt.
Harmony envelops some of the most varied tests. In general, Harmony covers tests that require knowing your fellow Egyptian citizens, contributing to the society as a whole, and understanding the nuisances of Egypt's society. Harmony requires a unique look at society, trends and statistics. Harmony is definitely not for everyone, due to the unique style of tests found in this discipline. At the same time, it is one of the easiest to participate in, because it doesn't require large resources, just time, and an understanding of the society of Egypt. Disciplines of Harmony have their finger on the pulse of society in Egypt.
Leadership requires management, discipline, and leadership skills. The tests in the Leadership discipline are all about government, laws, and guidance. This covers leading groups, mentoring new players, arbitrating player disputes, and even governing Egypt. The Leadership discipline also introduces the unique feature of giving an elected player the power to ban other players, as well as the option to write your own laws that can be voted on by your fellow Egyptians. The legal system in ATITD is one of its unique groundbreaking features. Allowing players to write, vote, pass, and implement their own rules for the Egyptian society. These laws are then encoded and implemented by the developers. Disciples of Leadership lead their fellow citizens toward developing a perfect society.
Thought, is all about puzzles and mental challenges. Thought disciplines build unique and interesting puzzles. They then invite their fellow Egyptian citizens to try and solve the puzzles. This discipline is not about making the most difficult puzzles, but to make a fun challenging puzzle without frustrating its player who will vote on the challenge, as well as the enjoyment of completing your challenge. Disciplines of Thought stimulate your brain with their challenges
Last, but not least, by any stretch, is the Worship discipline. The tests in the Worship discipline are about sacrifice and pageantry. Worship tests are all about performing set actions or sacrifices as a group, sometimes even Egypt as a whole. Every test requires cooperation of a group, as a whole, toward a common goal, and sacrificing precious gathered goods. Disciplines of Worship require cooperation of the group as a whole, and sacrifice by all, for mutual benefit.
That is all seven disciplines in a short overview. Architects build bigger and better. Artists and Musicians develop works of art for the citizens to enjoy. Body disciplines improve their body and mind through exploration of Egypt. Harmonists gauge society as a whole and learn to know their fellow citizens. Leaders work to lead Egypt and her citizens to a more perfect society. Thinkers try to stimulate their fellow citizens through thought provoking puzzles. Worshipers work together for the benefit of the group through cooperation and sacrifice.