The world of Otherside is set in the year 2018. Tokyo, California, is a large hub point for humans known as sealers, who commune with the Spirit World to keep it in balance with the Earth and earn a living by defeating demons.
The city of Tokyo, California, is America’s second largest center of business and commerce. Established in 2012 by a wealthy Japanese-American, it quickly became a popular destination for tourism and a melting pot for immigrants and people with varied skill sets. The Sealers Association moved the means to access its main headquarters there soon afterwards. The city also attracted the attention of the powerful Isayuki family, who moved there in order to monitor demon activity, similar to the Sealers Association’s original objectives.
Demons are life-forms that reside in a reality parallel to this dimension. While they can interact with objects in this world, we cannot interact with them without use of Spirit Eyes that are only present within sealers, ‘sixth senses’ unique to espers, and ‘empathy’ used by mages. They are composed of spiritual energy collected into a consciousness and motivated by strong human feelings. Humans with very resolute beliefs will attract, or in rare cases, create demons unwittingly. They can take absolutely any form and any size, and some can even shapeshift. When demons are defeated, they may leave behind a tangible object that signifies their existence, usually a stone or a weapon mostly in disrepair. These are collected by sealers to be sold and regulated to the Sealers Association of Tokyo, thus earning their wage.
A majority of demons are benign and do not voluntarily attack humans or demons in their proximity. However, there is one instinct that all demons share, regardless of type: the will to devour. At certain times that differ for each individual, demons will seek out their closest prey (almost always another demon) and attempt to consume it, causing themselves to grow and even evolve after a certain time, sometimes carrying a few qualities from the demons they hunted. Large demons have the power to create a pocket dimension inside their bodies, ingesting their prey and allowing them to be desiccated by the smaller demons living inside. This is accomplished by bending the demon world to ‘intersect’ with the physical one with their immense power, thus creating a pocket dimension separate from mainstream reality.
The more power demons carry, the more influence that they have over the physical world. For example, some of the largest demons found on Earth can bring an onset of catastrophic weather, enough to destroy cities. This makes it imperative for sealers to destroy them before they can grow. Demons who have obtained human intelligence, with the exception of a rare few, are also considered extremely dangerous, and are detained and destroyed on the spot.
Sealers are humans who regulate the parallel worlds in order to keep the balance and prevent one or both from falling out of the natural process. In order to do so, they make use of an ability called the ‘spirit eyes’. This is a form of perception, not necessarily a sixth sense that espers have, but more of an alteration of of one or more senses in order to perceive the demon world. The ability does not have to affect just their sense of sight, it has the capability of heightening other senses in order to perceive different levels of reality. In concept, to perceive is to be able to interact with, and as such, sealers can complete actions known as ‘rituals’ or ‘sacraments’ in order to affect the demon world, and thus affect the physical one. This process requires the sealer to channel his or her perception into an object known as a catalyst. Anything can be used as a catalyst, but the ability to use certain items differs between person to person, and is directly linked to their DNA. As such, more often than not, families of sealers tend to have the same abilities, but innovations can be made to rituals, accommodating for other abilities. Sealers can create more sealers out of normal humans by infusing them with spirit eyes, but not everyone can survive this without losing something of their own, e.g. their ability to see or hear, their sanity, and in extreme cases, even their life. Thankfully, these accidents are fairly uncommon, but there is still the pain and the confusion of having to adjust to the powers the spirit eyes bestow. From then on, every offspring a sealer has will be born with an innate ability to use the spirit eyes. Unfortunately, the spirit eyes are impossible to remove without endangering the holder’s life.
The Reckoning, an event that occurs every thousand years, will happen again in four days.
Toma Yamamoto, a sixteen-year-old attending the Mikado High School as a second-year student, is the current guardian of the Keystone. Every time he uses it to summon weapons, he unknowingly unseals an ancient being known as ‘XIII’ by a very small fraction.
Once XIII is free, [REDACTED].