From Unofficial Handbook of the Virtue Universe
Heterodyne's World is one of many parallel Earths that are relatively similar to that of the Virtue universe. However, Heterodyne's World lies along a different cosmological "axis" from the parallels accessed by the Portal Corporation, and as such, is not reachable by known means. What information is known comes entirely from the descriptions of the magical hero Heterodyne.
In Heterodyne's World, Magic is commonplace and widely used and accepted. Technology, on the other hand, is seen as a mysterious and occult force, and is usually referred to by the terms "Glitchcraft" or "Glitchery".
The city where Heterodyne originated is known simply as "Paragon". The city itself is much more modest in size ... where Paragon City has a great number of outlying neighborhoods and zones, Paragon has smaller, semi-independent neighboring townships. However, all of these townships look to Paragon for protection and guidance, so the end result is the same.
The entire region, following the Iktir invasion, is surrounded by potent magical barriers (known as Ward Walls).
Paragon itself is composed of only six districts (if the name differs significantly, these are listed with their canonical equivalents in parentheses):
- Thaumaturge City (Galaxy City) - Formerly known as Paragon Heights. Featuring the greatest concentration of magicians in Paragon, Thaumaturge City is one of the most well-protected and developed areas of Paragon. It is also the seat of government. A large statue of sorcerers lifting the world with their spells stands near the center.
- Atlantis Park (Atlas Park) - This portion of Paragon is themed around the ocean and water, in honor of Paragon's sister city. Fountains, aqueducts, canals, and waterfalls abound.
- Kings' Row - So called because of the centuries-old ruins of castles and temples that stand there, having fallen into decay. The land is swampy and wild.
- Brass Canyon (Steel Canyon) - A gleaming district of towering golden spires, brass bridges, and bronze architecture, serving as a center of trade and learning in Paragon.
- Skymeet (Skyway City) - Once an outcropping of mountainous terrain impinging upon the city, it has long since been magically paved and tunneled through until the area is a vast assortment of sweeping arches, aqueducts, bridges, and peninsulas jutting into the sky.
- The Greenwald (Perez Park) - This wilderness area lies at the heart of Paragon. Formerly a refuge for nature-oriented mystics and druids, in the wake of the Iktir it has grown dangerous and wild.
- Bright Astoria (Dark Astoria) - Astoria was once a fortified village near the shore, almost perpetually shrouded in fog. It was taken over and made into a haven for dark technology by Dr. Kolizhav. His servants embedded a network of advanced, forbidden technology under the entire zone. The name comes from the bright electric light that suffuses the area from no distinct source, all but blinding those who enter. Those who were trapped in the area when the light fell were forcibly uploaded into Kolizhav's virtual reality to appease the hunger for experience of the Kolizhav's digital masters, and their holo ghosts walk the eerie streets. Astoria today is eerily quiet, except for the minions of Kolizhav.
- Doomtowne (Boomtown) - The Iktir attack, combined with the usage of some of the darker magics available to Paragon's defenders, rendered the township of Daumton into a haunted, blasted rubble.
- Leyline (Faultline) - The site of the former village of Overbrook, shattered in a massive spell backlash. Potent streams of magical energy now run through this fractured area, which are tapped by the residents of Paragon to power much of the city's spellwork.
- Thaumavolta (Terra Volta) - A massive Thaumaturgical reservoir was created on this small island, which provides additional magical energies to the city.
- Brickstown - Site of the Ziggurat.
- Venice (Crey's Folly) - Venice retains its pristine state.
- Eastgate Bay/The Hollow Hills (The Hollows) - Mounds, pits, bridges, and crevices provide many hiding places for the (literal) Trolls.
- Independence Port
- Woodvale (Eden)
- Peregrine Island
- Talos Island
- Founder's Falls
- Striga Isle
The city is ruled by a Council of Sorcerers located at City Hall in Thaumaturge City. New heroes are registered with one of five guilds in either Thaumaturge City or Atlantis Park, based on their origins.
- MAGI (Magic): Unchanged, and the most common origin
- NOBLE (Natural): Natural-born Operative, Bureau of Leadership and Excellence
- GIGO (Technology): Guild of Independent Gadgeteering (sometimes "Glitchcraft") Operatives
- TITAN (Mutation): Thaumaturgically-Instigated Transformation - Advancement Notary
- ANGEL (Science): Advocacy for Neo-Glitchcraft Enhanced Luminaries
Heroes and Villains with magical or technological origins (and sometimes those without) typically have significant alterations in their origins and powers (and names) to suit the nature of the world, much as Hettie herself does. In contrast with Praetorian Earth, their faction does not usually differ.
- The Arcane (Statesman)
- Antimagic (Positron)
- Bast (Mynx)
- Goliath (Back Alley Brawler)
- The Golem King - The analogue of the Clockwork King
- Dr. Kolizhav - A technologist in the field of Virtual Reality, creator of Bright Astoria. (Sort-of) analogous to Dr. Vahzilok, with the goals of the Banished Pantheon.
- The Banished - A group of technologists ostracized for their experimentation on the human body. In Heterodyne's world, invasive surgery really does expose the person to possession or risk their soul escaping.
- The Iktir - A group of malevolent creatures who invaded Paragon using flying sky citadels.
- The Ossified (The Skulls)
- Black Ice (Hellions) - A gang of Technologists intent on acquiring dark devices.
- Ostracized (The Outcasts)
- The Vagrant Brotherhood (The Lost)
- The Skyraiders
- Trolls (The Trolls) - In Heterodyne's World, Trolls are exactly that.
- The Greying (Devouring Earth) - This nanotechnological plague is a potent threat.