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Gridwalkers are Puzzlebox inhabitants, usually of Downwarp, that hold to a particular set of holistic animist beliefs. They're sometimes counted among Puzzlebox's formal factions, sometimes under the name 'Gridshamans,' but there's not much evidence of large-scale faction-like organization among them. Gridwalkers tend to organize themselves in small tribes of a few dozen individuals at most, each tribe pursuing a general artistic or civic-works aim, and any factional 'artwar' activity is on behalf of these, not any larger overarching group.


What binds the Gridwalkers together, or at least individuals likely to take on that label, is their view of the universe as an interconnected living system that they call the Grid. This is not merely a sense of the connectedness of all things or a broad pantheism, instead it's a perception of reality as being made of literally a social network, in the old sociological sense. Everything that can be seen as a 'thing', whether material, conceptual, or somehow something else entirely, is in their view alive, individuated, and inclined to form personal connections with other things. In understanding, forming, and strengthening these connections, Gridwalkers believe they can not only have a fuller experience of the world, but also gain favor and strength from the relationships they've formed with their friends, physical and otherwise, throughout the Grid.

Working with the Grid, therefore, involves cultivating these relationships. Gridwalkers call the attention, effort, and energy put into these relationships 'Candescence' or, informally, 'Glow'. One of the best ways to raise Glow is through creative processes: inspiring, building, changing, rebuilding, helping others up as you do, or simply bringing them along for a ride. This creative cycle forms the very heart of the Grid, birthed at the beginning of everything when something in unformed primal chaos became aware of itself, introspecting, looping, shaping and redefining itself until it ramified into the boundless diversity of the universe. That cycle, which Gridwalkers call the Circuit, suffuses everything in the Grid, and also serves as a way of beginning to understand Grid and Glow in terms of those core concepts of creation, formation, breakdown, and re-creation.


Since Gridwalkers live in a world filled with artifice and technology (even if much of it tends to be cobbled together or in poor repair), their greater powers have a decidedly urban bent. The three main stages of the Circuit are called Spark (Creation), Steel (Pattern), and Smoke (Change), together called the Cores or Attractors. These bear some resemblance to greater deities (and, in animist terms, are certainly powerful spirits) but are not often seen as personified, being somehow too big to put a face on. Propitiating them usually involves simply acting in accordance with one or more, being creative, inspiring, supportive, transformative, and knowing that that strengthens them and puts the 'walker more in tune with them.

Other nodes of the Grid are often seen as much more individuated and personified, even if they are larger concepts or entities as large as a building or neighborhood. Relationships with these spirits are built on reciprocity, as in countless other animist cultures. Offerings are given regularly, though their form can be anything from food left at a doorstep to dances performed at a crossroads. These are never to be seen as a quid-pro-quo; the Grid is not formed of spiritual vending machines. Instead, friendships are formed: you do things for your friends because you like them, and your friends do things for you because they like you.