When Chi gathers together in huge amounts it becomes easier to count it in Yarn, Solos throw Yarn around for massive effects, but Mercari can spend Half of their Max Chi or all their current Chi as a burst of Yarn (called a Million-to-one shot).
Characters do not store Yarn in themselves instead they store Chi which can be spent as Yarn. When a Character spends Yarn they actually spend the Chi instead. If a Solo character turns their Monolith into an Artefact (or Real Estate into a Province) then they will also be storing Chi (which is Reduced to give the number of points of Yarn stored).
Yarn is the most powerful form of Sway and can allow the Grand Mercari or Solo to perform feats that simply aren’t possible in other games or reality. Yes, Yarn can be used to do everything that Chi or Sway can do, which means it can be used to create Descendants, or even Characters (usually NPCs). But the game goes beyond that, even allowing Yarn to alter anything about the game, including the setting.
Side-stepping isthe term Solos use to describe how they walk between universes, and even how to modify Chronoliths, changing the reality around them by sidestepping into a Metaphor Universe. This can create Retcon or Mandela effects that appear to alter history, or create false memories in Grunts and Mercari.
Side-stepping can be thought of as hacking the last saved Chronolith to alter the present. Or you could think of it as altering the past in just the right way to have it be how you want it now.
Side-stepping can only be paid in Yarn and is calculated from Yarn costs on the Tables. A Mercari’s burst of Chi also causes a Metaphorical Sidestep to occur allowing them to cause that Million-to-one shot to happen. It is worth noting that a Character cannot “side-step” themselves directly, but must treat themselves as a target (Grunt/Mercari/Solo as appropriate)
|Side-step / Metaphor
|Cost Modifier (Yarn)
|Cosmetic Changes only (Colouration, Timbre, Logos, Brands, etc): Tone, Proficiencies
|Distortion (Stretch, bend, reposition, Alter dates of events): Alter Boons, dice rolls and Descendants
|Polymorph (Shape-shifting, rearangment, Alter remembered events- Mandela Effect): Alter Annexes, Handicaps
|Transmute (Turn to stone, lead to gold, Alter history – Retcon): Alter Facets e.g. Personality or Incarna
|Warp (Bigger on the inside, Alter species, anatomy, geography, history, completely): Alter all aspects
|Create (Spontaneous Creation)
|Destroy (Complete Destruction)
For an example, to Transmute (x2) a Location (4), such as a large Woodland(10) into farmland (altering the Location type as well as Annexes and history) would cost 28 Yarn (230 Chi). If you wanted to restrict the length of time the side-step would exist for before flip-flopping back automatically you would add that to the cost (before multiplying). So if you want to change the farmland back into a forest for a night(4), then it would cost 36 Yarn (355 Chi), otherwise it would have to be turned back by a second side-stepping.
Sidestepping is when a Character leaves one reality and approaches a metaphor reality. They may be travelling to a pocket universe, weaving an illusion, using powerful wish magic, or retconning history. The method is largely irrelevant. The scene is roughly the same, but the details are radically altered.
When Side-stepping you calculate the largest change that you are trying and pay that cost, all other lesser costs are ignored. Because of this Side-stepping can be an incredibly powerful way of both building power-creep and levelling the playingfield again. Although, it should be noted that the cost to replace something is always lower than the cost to destroy it.
Players and Referees are advised to Side-step problems sparingly and not too expensively. At least until you’ve all the got the hang of it.
Remember that this sidexstepping is only the Solo moving to a nearby alternate timeline, it does not alter the original universe at all, to achieve a permanent change usually requires a Million-to-one shot (automatically pays for a duration of Permanent).