Mister Monster's Introductory Guide to the Interdimensional Marble Hunting Game
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Foreword and Introduction

Greetings, valued reader. Before we begin, I would like to thank you for the interest you displayed for our beloved hobby and kindly ask for your attention as you read through the following pages. That is, if you can read, of course. If you can't, I still hope you enjoy this book, and I apologize for the lack of ilustrations. I am no artist, and I wished not to bother my associates.

With that being said, let me quickly introduce you to the hobby of Marble Hunting, for the sake of helpful context and "reader retention".

Let me assume you already know of the "supernatural", by which I mean such facets of life as other dimensions, magic, unexplainable beings, artifacts, locations and happenings, and so on. On the off chance you don't, I would recommend seeking out other sources of knowledge covering the topic, as this book is only concerned with Marble Hunting. I would also advise against doing so in a noticeable manner, as it is highly likely your lack of knowledge is deliberately caused by dangerous, often predominantly human organisations intent on preserving it.

Our hobby is one of the less dangerous and more exciting pieces of this "supernatural" (well, some would certainly disagree with the latter, but this guide is in part a small, well-intended effort to convince you otherwise). Simply put, we create, hide, seek out, collect and trade little spheres we call "Marbles". These Marbles are hidden around the creeks and cavities of the world, sometimes kept deep in nature, sometimes in the shadows of civilization, sometimes at places safe and straightforward, sometimes at those dangerous and mysterious. All it takes to collect some Marbles is locating them, yet others require you to complete a puzzle or a challenge delicately crafted around them by their hiders. All hides are unique in appearance and basic physical properties. Nevertheless, should you join us in our Game and not get maimed, eaten, deprived of your soul or detained in the process, you will soon find yourself discovering locations you did not know of before, making new friends over a shared interest, and growing your collection of Marbles and memories.

If I have peaked your interest, I invite you to turn the page and learn more. If not, I would like to ask you to return this book back where you found it, as it may still be of use to others.

A Well-Meant Warning and a Request on Behalf of the Library

As you likely know, the world can be a dangerous place. In some realities, it is due to monsters and nightmares that should not be. In others, due to those keeping them at bay. Our Game will invite you to all sorts of locations, but it is of utmost importance you exercise the same level of caution on the hunt that you would during any other sort of travels. This is essential to ensure not only your own safety (as much of it as you would like to ensure, anyway), but also the continued health and growth of the Game itself. If you are unsure about a world you would like to visit or the necessary precautions you might need to take, make sure to inform yourself from other sources. If you are interested, our club can also recommend good Marble-Hunting practices and destinations, should you not forget to tell us of your specific species or traits.

Speaking of our club, the Library has graciously provided us with a room to use for our meetings, on the condition we will inform about and enforce its ban on Marbles and the Game on its premises. We find this understandable, and would like to thus ask you not to hide any Marbles in the Library, or otherwise disrupt the experience of other patrons. On more discouraged hiding locations, see chapter "Hiding Your Own Marble".

The Game's Known History, in Short

Like with many things of such age, the full history of the Game is sadly not known. From what we've been able to gather, it seems that it was invented millenia ago by a being whose name (which most of us now believe to be a moniker of sorts) can be roughly translated as the "Mother". They created the original 105 Marbles and hid them thorough their world. It is also generally assumed they showed others how to play the Game, but no sources, written or otherwise, speak of them, or their original intentions, in any more detail.

By the time of the first verifiable records of the Game available to us, it had already spread to other realities. However, it didn't truly start growing in popularity (and, to be truthful, in infamous incidents) until it reached the circles of the Library. The majority of current players learned of its existence here, in fact. I will not go into much detail about the incidents. Most were simple preventable cases of players not doing their due preparations before going on the hunt. You are likely to learn of them yourself in due time as well, should you choose to pursue the hobby.

Finally, in order to improve the reputation of Marble Hunting, I, along with several of my friends and associates, decided to create a club that would unite likely-minded players and provide sufficient learning materials for newcomers, the guide you're reading right now being the first among them. It is worth stating that some of the Game's players do not agree with our approach, but none so far have acted openly hostile. That being said, as long as you properly follow the community's etiquette and learn its culture (and perhaps forego mentioning your mentors before you learn of your associates' opinions on us), you will have nothing to fear.

How to Participate

It is my duty as a long-time player and the author of this guide to inform you that the Game has no official goals, perhaps except finding joy in some or all of its facets. Some play it to meet new acquaintances, some for the joy of completing their collections, others that of discovering new places. There are those among us who "hunt" primarily through trading, although I will not state my opinions on this particular side of the hobby. Few delight solely in hiding new Marbles, devising excellent hiding spots or original challenges, and building their reputation among the community.

However, you will need to know how to find a Marble before you delve deeper. To start, you will need a normal mechanical compass, a map, or other tool of navigation (It is not advised to use any "electronical" or otherwise more complex devices. Few of the younger members of the club attempted to, and according to them, the usability of these devices decreased dramatically). You will then have to draw a simple rune on the tool- a half circle with a smaller full circle inside of it. If done in the viscinity of an existing Marble (see chapter "Meeting, Discoursing and Trading" on how to procure an easy access to one), the tool will modify itself to always show the rough location of the nearest Marble. However, such tools do not assist in the locating of "Invisible" Marbles, which their creators either don't intend to be found, or allude to the locations of in their own ways.

Once you find any hidden Marble, you can attempt to take it. Doing so will produce a single copy of it, which you can keep. Moving the original despite not being its creator is not impossible, but I will not explain the process of doing so in this guide, for reasons certainly obvious to all. However, it is of importance to note that succeeding in such an endeavor usually results in almost instant destruction of the Marble. We are not certain for the reasons behind it, but suspect it to be a security feature of sorts.

Hiding Your Own Marble

It is not only possible to create and hide your own Marble, but the continued growth of the Game depends on its players doing so. To achieve this, you first need to acquire three different Marbles. Once you do, hold them close together- for humans, the palm of the hand is ideal. Picture the design you would like the new Marble to have in your mind. It needs to be original, and the better your imagination, the more accurate the result will be. If you want to create an Invisible Marble (see previous chapter), also think of the word and/or concept "invisible". Finally, press the three Marbles together. When you release your grip, your should find your creation in place of the spent pieces.

The next step is hiding your new Marble. Once you do, it will take several hours to "stabilise" and become a functional part of the Game. However, before you hide any Marbles, I advise you to gather experience and learn good hiding locations. Nevertheless, I will now list the basic hiding guidelines we entice you not break despite any amount of experience:

Do not hide Marbles in the Library.
Do not hide Marbles in locations where they could be easily discovered by those unaware of the supernatural, at the very least not without taking precautions. Furthermore…
Do not hide Marbles in locations where they could be easily discovered by those intending to contain or destroy the supernatural. It has happened in several realities, and it is never good for the game.
Do not hide Marbles in locations where the Game could disturb those not interested in it. It gives the hobby a bad reputation.

Meeting, Discoursing and Trading

Meeting other players is an essential part of the hobby, as it allows you to forge lasting friendships, exchange information and trade collected Marbles. To our knowledge, there are currently several thousand active players, but the ideal place to start looking (both for your experience and safety) is our very own club. We can be found in Private Reading Room SB-732, and we're inviting of anyone willing to share our excitement for the hobby and follow a few basic rules. However, while you can (for the most part) trust our members in nearly all matters related to Marbles and the Game, be wary of any advice pertaining to Marble trading. Jack is the member most of us tend to believe when it comes to this, me included, but I suggest you remain vigilant whenever discussing the topic. Or alternatively, not trade at at all. Finally, if you are in need of a Marble for the sake of creating a Marble-seeking tool, any of our members will be willing to provide one.

Addendum: Jack's Introduction to Valuable Marbles, Since Good Old Monster Knows Nothing About That

Hey everyone. To be frank, this part wasn't supposed to be in the book. Then I test read it and turns out, yeah, there was literally nothing usable when it comes to telling newbies which of our beloved balls are rare and which are not. So, in the interest of making this piece complete (and I promise I'm doing this because I genuinely care about being the "economist" guy when it comes to Marbles), here I go:

The original 105 Marbles Mom made are the bee's knees, literally the rarest stuff you can find, especially number 1 and 105. They all have small red numbers on them, but you will need to memorize their exact looks if you don't want to be scammed. Mom's world is also gone now, or at least we think it is, so no luck generating more. Basic economics take care of the rest.

Any Marbles that get discovered by their universe's version of the Foundation and/or GOC tend to skyrocket in value. Same with Marbles from destroyed worlds. Same, to a lesser extent, with any other Marbles that get discontinued.
If you don't know what the Foundation and/or the GOC is, oh boy, do we have news for you. Though I'd probably not ask anyone outside of the club, touchy subject.

Any Marbles that are difficult to obtain, be it due to their location, or the challenge/puzzle associated with them are often higher in value, especially if they're from a guy who's well-known for that kind of stuff. However, just because a Marble is rare, doesn't automatically mean it's valuable. Some "smart" people will create an Invisible and never tell anyone where it is to have a super "desirable" Marble. That's not how it works. Not in most cases, anyhow. Also: many of the sadists who go through some of these challenges consider their Marbles proofs of their success, and will not give them away for their dear life.
I go through them to have stuff to trade, so hit me up if you happen upon anything rare and want to brag about surviving some rad stuff.

Finally, my advice about one-off Marbles doesn't always apply. Believe it or not, some people, popular and/or artistic types, can make a small ball, claim it's art or collectible or whatever, and just generate value. Then again, it's not my job to comment on that, and as long as people are willing to trade for them, they are valuable by all metrics known to me.
And no, I don't have my own "celebrity" line. I just take donations from people happy with my advice. The value of a good reputation, baby.
All donations are to be made in Marbles, of course.

Fun fact to end the guide on: Invisibles weren't always a thing, or at least we don't think they were. I've asked Monster about it before, and yeah, they started popping up around the time of 500-600 active players. Make of that what you will, just wanted to give you newbies something intriguing to look into.

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