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Cythereal
Nov 8, 2009



Kurieg posted:

A rank 10 Schism with gauntlet 1 would basically be a murderous dali painting made flesh but absolutely no one there thinks anything is wrong.

Another fun Promethean tidbit! Lowering the gauntlet and ripping holes in it is what one of the basic Promethean types does in an area just by being there.

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DAD LOST MY IPOD
Feb 3, 2012

Fats Dominar is on the case




schism is just disquiet but clunkier and less interesting

Bieeanshee
Aug 21, 2000

Not keen on keening.




Grimey Drawer

"My other Insatiable is a vagina filled with centipedes."

Night10194
Feb 13, 2012

We'll start,
like many good things,
with a bear.


DAD LOST MY IPOD posted:

schism is just disquiet but clunkier and less interesting

Hello welcome to all of Beast.

If anything, Beast (aside from its awful abuse apologia and all) is proof that they're reallllly running out of room in those shadows.

AnEdgelord
Dec 12, 2016



Night10194 posted:

Hello welcome to all of Beast.

If anything, Beast (aside from its awful abuse apologia and all) is proof that they're reallllly running out of room in those shadows.

I think Deviant will be good since it tackles that "Weird Science" angle that no other game line does, but I sincerely think that Deviant should be the last nWoD game line.

Beast on the other hand should be quietly jettisoned once the kickstarter obligations are fulfilled and then apologized for a few years after that.

Cythereal
Nov 8, 2009



LordAbaddon posted:

Beast on the other hand should be quietly jettisoned once the kickstarter obligations are fulfilled and then apologized for a few years after that.

They didn't do it for oChangeling and won't for Beast.

Halloween Jack
Sep 11, 2003

Let your word be "Yes, Yes" or "No, No"; anything more than this comes from the evil one.






Introduction, Preface
Introduction
Chapter 1
Chapter 2
Chapter 3, Part 1
Chapter 3, Part 2
Chapter 4, Part 1
Chapter 4, Part 2
Chapter 5
Chapter 6
Chapter 7
Chapter 8
Chapter 9
Chapter 10
Chapter 11
Chapter 12
Chapter 13
Chapter 14

Okay, looking back, I now realize why this review took so long to complete.

Book 3, Chapter 15: Imperial Personages

Our survey of this game ends on an anticlimactic note, with a chapter of information on some of the most important Great House nobles and stats for stock NPCs. The notes on named characters don’t include any stats at all, but the stats provided for the lesser NPCs answer a question I’ve had as I’ve been reading the book: what does a given number in a stat or skill mean with regard to how your character stacks up against the people from the novels?

In short, the game makes good on its promise that even having 1 point in a skill makes a character an expert. If your PC has stats and skills in the range of 3s and 4s, they’re equal to unnamed but elite supporting characters like Sardaukar commanders.

Big Deal Imperial Dudes of Legend

[curiously not pictured]

The Padishah Emperor Shaddam Corrino IV is a stern but cunning aristocrat who supports the status quo. He’s very much an “iron fist in a velvet glove” sort, who wears a Sardaukar general’s uniform and helmet as an unsubtle reminder that his elite stormtroopers are the source of his power.




Count Hasimir Fenring is the Emperor’s right-hand man, the closest thing he has to a friend. He is his advisor, emissary, de facto “spice czar,” and a feared duelist and assassin. His wife Margot is a high-ranking Bene Gesserit. The Sisterhood considers Fenring a failed Kwisatz Haderach--he is supremely talented, but a “genetic eunuch.” (Whether this means sterility or impotence is never made clear.)




Duke Leto Atreides, or “Leto the Just,” is the rare noble who truly believes that loyalty is a two-way street. His well-earned reputation for integrity has allowed him to recruit a House Entourage that is second to none, and despite his House’s relative poverty, has made him the unofficial leader of a coalition of Great Houses in the Landsraad who oppose the Emperor and his allies.




Lady Jessica is Leto Atreides’ bound-concubine and the mother of his heir. She was one of the BG Reverend Mother’s most promising students, but disobeyed the orders of their breeding program by bearing Leto a son. This severely disrupted their plans to wed an Atreides daughter to a Harkonnen son, ending a centuries-long vendetta and creating the Kwisatz Haderach in one masterstroke.




Baron Vladimir Harkonnen, who uses a suspensor belt to compensate for his immense corpulence, is a ruthless schemer whose hunger for greater wealth and power is only matched by his hatred for the Atreides. He will not rest until the Atreides line is extinguished.




Created for the Harkonnen by the Bene Treilaxu, Piter de Vries is a “twisted Mentat” for whom normal ethical constraints are replaced by obsessive sadism. He serves the Baron as a spymaster and torturer, but his expensive spice addiction and sadism shock even the Harkonnen--Piter is blithely aware that the Baron plans to execute him the moment he outlives his usefulness.




na-Count Tycho di Moritani rules as regent in the name of his senile father, keeping him around in case he needs him as a shield against any legal retribution. Why would he need it? Well, the main project of his rule is to secretly revive the ancient cult of Bhotani assassins, while embarking on a public relations campaign to change his House’s image.




Verdun Dei is the former leader of another school of assassins, recruited by Tycho to revive the Bhotani ways. While other Moritani advisors handle the propaganda campaign, he focuses entirely on turning a long-abandoned monastery into a secret training ground. He is training his instructors using the Fraternus Electi, a compilation of Bhotani lore, and has outfitted the monastery with state-of-the-art devices from Ix and Richese.




Lady Catriona Tseida rules her House as regent for her young nephew Iorgu. She is a conservative ruler who focuses on strengthening their relations with other Houses. Her combination of striking beauty and keen intelligence makes her a beguiling negotiator.




Moebius Ahearn was a Sunnivas professor who shocked his colleagues when he left his academic post to become an “ethics advocate” for House Tseida. It’s implied that he puts a moral face on Tseida’s changing policy on advocating for more technology, but I don’t see many story hooks with this guy.




Baron Wolfram von Wallach, like the ancestor who founded his House, was a decorated Sardaukar veteran before taking up House leadership. Though elderly, he still exercises his body and mind, able to hold his own against several younger men on a sparring mat.




Lechter Aedile is Baron Von Wallach’s Suk physician. An excellent doctor and geneticist but a poor politician, he was glad to be recruited into House Wallach from a stalled academic career.


Supporting NPCs

CHOAM Delegates are financial advisors, ambassadors, and diplomats, with skills related to negotiation and financial laws.

Concubines are commonplace among the Houses. They don’t just correspond to the “courtesans” in other games; they rear noble children, and have skills related to managing royal households since their children’s lives depend on it.

Guild Spokesmen are prescient Navigators who haven’t turned to fishmen yet and are empowered to speak for the Guild. Defying any Spokesman means defying the Guild, so they’re pretty drat cocky around Imperial nobles who are used to being obeyed. They have a Prescience stat, the diplomatic and mercantile skills you’d expect, and Racketeering? Even the Guild isn’t incorruptible.

Imperial Planetologists are mainly in charge of taking censuses and monitoring how Houses use their planet’s resources. They’re mainly scientists, but they have some political power--you don’t want them tattling on you to the home office. Judges of the Change are similar: non-noble, but still high-status Imperial agents appointed to monitor things like kanly and quasi-fiefs, and tattle on you if you gently caress up.

Landsraad Emissaries are basically senators appointed to represent their Great House in the Landsraad. It’s a common job for nobles who aren’t the firstborn, and they have high ratings in social and political skills.

Sardaukar Commanders are the best of the best, officers in the Emperor’s elite Sardaukar troops. While they are fanatically loyal to the Emperor like all Sardaukar, commanders tend to be “egotistical, even megalomaniacal.” For reference, these guys have physical attributes and combat skills each in the 3-4 range, and traits like Heroism and Resilience, to give you an idea of how fighty PCs stack up against the best fighters in the galaxy that aren’t Fremen.

Truthsayers are elite Bene Gesserit sisters who act as human lie detectors, and are hired out to the Houses for this purpose. Stat-wise, they’re at least as scary as Sardaukar officers--not as much in combat, though their Weirding Combat makes them formidable, but they have 4s and 5s in stuff like BG Way, Politics, Subterfuge, and Voice, allowing them to bend almost anyone to their will.

Umma are prescient, religious mystics not governed by the BG or Guild, who wander about preaching and agitating. Most high-status people consider them charlatans.


Extras

Criminal is a catch-all for any sort of underworld operator. They have some combat and stealth skills, but are mainly focused on shady business related skills.

Demagogue represents “anyone who leads a mob against the establishment,” including religious fanatics and labor activists--the sort of people a feudal House has to deal with. Their skill focus is entirely social.

Guards are House security personnel, the kind who would be trusted to guard an Imperial household, with combat stats and skills in the 2-3 range. House troopers are weaker, with attributes defaulting to 2 and 1-2 points in combat skills.

Sardaukar troopers are a different breed, with physical attributes at 3, combat skills at 2-3, and the Heroism trait as well as high survival skills.

Saboteurs physically or socially infiltrate enemy organizations to throw them into chaos. They don’t have combat skills, but high levels in skills related to Stealth and using high-tech equipment.

Slave gladiators are usually maula, but considered valuable to their House. Their stats represent a gladiator who’s managed to survive many battles, with stats similar to a Sardaukar trooper. Also, something I didn’t notice before: These guys have the Shield Fighting trait, which really ought to be possessed by other elite fighters like House Guards and any Sardaukar.

Troubadours are some of the rare individuals who travel many worlds working for many different houses as musicians, poets, and storytellers. Because of their unique position, troubadours are romantic figures who carry a mystique reputing them as lovers, spies, and duelists. Troubadours have artistic and social skills, and most do develop combat skills in case they get into trouble.

Other Extras I don’t care to go over in any detail include slavemasters, interrogators, merchants, and sleeper agents. Their stats aren’t all that important, but such entries are important to establishing the nature of the setting.



Even the Emperor’s Sardaukar terror troops will be helpless before the might of our bumper jumpers!


Postmortem

Dune: Chronicles of the Imperium is a solid presentation on the Dune setting that does an intelligent job of filling in the gaps where need be. On the design front, it has a few innovations (namely the incomplete House Attributes) and is otherwise very much of its time.

So would I play this game? To be honest, no. I mean, I’d certainly play in the Dune setting, and I’d happily go along with most of the authors’ assumptions about setting elements that are left vague in the novels. But the system mostly sucks. The ICON system is one of those late-90s-early-00s in-house systems that was created for the sake of having an in-house system. The skill list is way too long, including many skills that overlap each other and some class-specific skills (like Ritualism and the Mentat skills) that are meaningless gobbledygook without nonexistent subsystems that were meant to appear in sourcebooks. The House Venture rules are incomplete.

I like the House Attributes themselves, and the combat system is pretty cool and far better than the core mechanic it’s based on. (It’s rare to see an action-point based, maneuver-based combat system from the 90s that isn’t a tedious minigame.) I could actually use a lot of material from this book. But I think it would be dishonest to say “I’d totally play this game--after I take a chainsaw to the skill list, replace the House rules with the Company rules from Reign, and oh yeah, change the basic die mechanic.”

I also wouldn’t be inclined to play a random House Minor, competing with other Houses Minor for resources on a Great House homeworld, with everything the PCs accomplish happening several steps below the scale of importance of the events of the novels. gently caress, in the novels, Duke Leto only refers to his Houses Minor in a couple of throwaway lines! I’d much rather have my PCs playing through the author’s own Dune Adventure campaign, doing important things adjacent to the stuff the characters are doing. I agree with the developers’ research that said that while people playing a Star Wars or Star Trek game want to be as powerful as the main characters, people playing a Dune game probably don’t want to be Paul. Even Paul doesn’t want to be Paul; that’s the point! Fight alongside characters like Gurney and Duncan instead.

quote:

BI-LA KAIFA: Amen. (Literally: “Nothing further need be explained.”)

Halloween Jack fucked around with this message at 16:16 on Feb 19, 2017

Kurieg
Jul 19, 2012

RIP Lutri: 5/19/20-4/2/20
:blizz::gamefreak:


Count Chocula posted:

Anyone played that new Vampire interactive fiction game for iPhone?

I'm not sure if you're being intentionally dense, but we've been talking about this in the World of Darkness thread for the past 3 days. And we really don't need another thread derailed by it.

MonsieurChoc
Oct 12, 2013

Every species can smell its own extinction.


LordAbaddon posted:

I think Deviant will be good since it tackles that "Weird Science" angle that no other game line does, but I sincerely think that Deviant should be the last nWoD game line.

Beast on the other hand should be quietly jettisoned once the kickstarter obligations are fulfilled and then apologized for a few years after that.

I could see a game delving deep into UFO lore and stuff, since it's been used since the nWoD core but never in a major way, but yeah it's pretty much complete.

AnEdgelord
Dec 12, 2016



MonsieurChoc posted:

I could see a game delving deep into UFO lore and stuff, since it's been used since the nWoD core but never in a major way, but yeah it's pretty much complete.

I think there might be something to doing an astral splat in the vein of werewolf and geist but beast has kind of tainted that space and I'd be cool if we literally never saw that idea manifest if it means less of a chance for game lines like beast to happen.

Kurieg
Jul 19, 2012

RIP Lutri: 5/19/20-4/2/20
:blizz::gamefreak:



Night Horrors: Conquering Heroes - Insatiables part 3

Colette: The Lovesick Girl
Hold me closer. Hold me tighter. Give me your love, now! Now I said! I need it! Fine, I’ll just take it myself.
Colette grew up with absent parents, more interested in their own affairs then their daughter, so when the dreams of cold permeated her dreams she didn't really have anyone to turn to. "A girl with a stronger will may have come upon a sense of independence she had been lacking her own life and become determined to change. Instead Colette sunk deeper into her new state as an Insatiable and sought only to fill the void inside her." That... seems kind of victim blamey.

Anyways, she went downstairs to her mother to hug her and try to fill the empty void in her heart, instead she just froze her mother to death. Then she went to her dad's workplace where she found him with :sigh: his gay lover that he was cheating on her mother with. They both died as well, of course, but she felt no justice, just a slight abating of the emptiness inside of her. Without parents she moved onto the streets and started building her Den in an abandoned building near some night clubs.

You Are My Family
Colette spent a while playing the wounded bird routine, finding lovers who would try to "fix" her and draining them of all warmth. It was even more satisfying for her if they showed genuine affection for her. Eventually she left enough bodies behind to garner the attraction of a Beast, and Colette finally felt genuine familial affection for another being.

quote:

Her first was with Malik, a Namtaru who fascinated Colette to no end. She followed him home and snuck into his Lair, a place of pure fire that would have kept anyone else at bay. The flames gave way to the Lovesick Girl’s steps, however, and allowed her cold heart to pierce their defenses. Each time he returned to his home, she was nowhere to be found, but his flames were dimmer than before. After weeks of attempting to hunt her down, Malik finally found Colette in his Lair trying on several sets of his clothes with a giant smile on her face. “They are a perfect fit!” she exclaimed, even though they hung off her like she was a tiny mannequin in a plus-sized store. When Malik took on his Horror form, hoping to scare her away with the heat of his gaze, she only reached for him, drew him close and kissed him deep. He felt the revulsion he normally inspired in others coursing through his own body, and he pushed her away and demanded she leave. It was too late, though; his power was now hers and she had never felt closer to another being until that day.
So yes, she's a creepy stalker girlfriend who kills her lovers, except now humans are only snacks, she longs to find the Beast that will actually make her feel whole inside.

Description

quote:

Every interaction with Colette makes her victim ever more infatuated. The same longing she has held in her soul since she was a little girl now becomes a part of each and every person she encounters, even if they don’t realize it at first. They have dreams of her face, her hands, her lips, and wake up shaking and cold with the knowledge that only that girl they met last night could warm them again. Their relationships begin to wane, as they are obsessed only with meeting Colette one more time. They frequent the clubs hoping to bump into her, and either go home alone in despair or go home with a random person to attempt to fill their own void. Colette infects her targets with an intense emptiness, a reflection of the hunger she feels every day.

The Lovesick Girl looks to be like any other girl with dark hair and Latin roots, and knows how to camouflage or stand out based on her clothing choice. Regardless of her garb, however, she always looks sad and in need of help, begging anyone she meets to want to reach out and care for her. Colette is a Venus fly trap for charity, much to the folly of so-called “good” people. In her Horrific form, this becomes even more obvious, as her arms and torso peel away to reveal a gaping vortex, sucking the air out of the area and leaving it chilled. Her legs plant themselves into the ground with black, slightly metallic roots, and the rest of her body becomes wisps of energy grabbing everything it can and throwing it into the black hole. Colette consumes everything she can in this form, leaving nothing but a crater in the ground, swelling whole buildings or city blocks into herself if not stopped.
There....there aren't any mechanics for that last bit. There's all sorts of bits in these Insatiable entries where they describe them doing something supernatural that the rules just don't support.

Rumors
“You can’t go home with just anyone. What if she’s the Lovesick Girl? You may never come back again. Be careful, and be aware, she could be anyone, but she’s dangerous.”
Rumors of her have spread amongst the nightclub scene, but she preys on men and women with equal frequency.

“I hear the Lovesick Girl only punishes bad people, those people who are mean to her, or put other people down. Be nice and you might survive meeting her.”
Being extra nice and gentle to the Lovesick Girl confuses her and makes her run back to her Den. Someone who's trying to kill her might use this tactic to follow her back and start smashing all the trophies she has taken from her victims, somehow this weakens her maybe.

Plot Hooks

quote:

• The Beast characters’ brood return from their latest conflict or adventure to find their Lair ransacked, and with a weaker connection to the Primordial Dream. Stepping into the area, they immediately notice that nothing except the most superficial of items are missing. Possibly an old jersey the one Beast hasn’t worn in weeks or another’s favorite candy dish, but anything of real significance or power is left without a scratch. An overwhelming confusion hits the Brood until they find a letter from their intruder reading, “Hello, my love. I have taken only small mementos
this time, but the next time I come back I’ll show myself to you and you’ll love me back.” It becomes a puzzle to figure out what she took and why, figuring out which of the brood she is actually targeting, and when she plans to attack again.
• The Lovesick Girl’s legend has grown over the last few months, with more bodies turning up and even more mentions of her actions coming through the grapevine. The usual rumor mill isn’t even enough to contain the damage she is doing right now and is instead leaking over into the local news coverage with investigations into a possible serial killer. Having this much attention brought in by an Insatiable is the exact reason Beasts are sworn to destroy them practically on sight. This type of story doesn’t have a single goal; instead, it is composed of hunting and disposing of the Lovesick Girl, mixed with attempts to quell the public knowledge already surrounding them and hopefully fixing the flow of spirits to the Primordial Dream before too much damage is done. On top of all of that, the other supernatural creatures in the city are sure to blame the brood if they can’t handle their business quickly and quietly.
• A local Ventrue of the Invictus approaches the protagonists’ brood. He is weakened and needs help. He tells a story of how he can only feed on the saddened and he finds club girls to be the easiest to prey upon, but now this predator has been turned into the prey. He says he’s been seeing a beautiful, melancholy girl nightly, despite knowing better, and his inner beast is growling closer to the surface with each meeting. Without the Beasts’ help, he is sure to lose his humanity, but there is great favor to be gained with his clan if they can rid him of his succubus.
I'm reasonably certain that's not the Ventrue's clan weakness anymore, it was in Masquerade but not Requiem...

Her statline isn't anything to write home about, other than the fact that her Moment is apparently "FROZEN hell" (it's Freezing Hell) and she carries a CAR BATTERY around with her everywhere to use as a weapon, even having a specialization in it.


Null Snyper: Internet Scourge
If u can’t take criticism, GTFO n00b! LOL

Welp, the Quote tags are going to be getting a workout today.

Maria Figueroa was an outcast all through her schooling. She was constantly bullied for being different, and while others would occasionally pretend to be her friend it was only until they got what they wanted and left her by the wayside again. And she was always the one who got in trouble while the other kids got to keep on with their perfect little lives. The only place she ever felt at peace was when she could escape to the school library's computer lab and go online. On message boards her looks and accent didn't matter, she could re-invent herself constantly. A new screen name was a new person, "She could shed that self as easily as she shed sweaty, rank clothes."

quote:

As soon as she graduated high school and was on her own, she saved up enough to buy an old laptop. She spent every moment of her free time engrossed in it. Her favorite forum was one that criticized people’s self-made costumes. Members of the community would take pictures of other people’s cosplay and upload them for everyone to ridicule. Maria gleefully joined in savaging the images. One picture turned out to be of a regular poster to the group.

Betrayed and hurting, the girl posted a heartfelt message asking the forum to remove the picture and for everyone to go easy on her. Her pleas only enflamed the forum’s response. Maria in particular tore into the girl, unleashing so many years of pent up fury. All the things she wanted to say for so long to her tormentors, all the power she never had before, she now brought to bear on the girl she, only days before, called a friend. When word came that the girl committed suicide, a wave of euphoria washed through Maria like she never felt before.

Suddenly, her eyes were open to senses she never imaged. She could see the void within herself and her empty, hungry tendrils reaching out across the electrons. She could touch any part of the internet she wished. All she had to do was stretch a little bit, and she could snuff out any life she encountered with but a few keystrokes. Maria let the void expand, completely consuming that pathetic person she once was. In its place was Null Snyper, a predator who could be virtually anywhere at once.
Yup, she's an internet troll Insatiable, and she for some reason can feed over the internet, unlike other Insatiables.

The Webs She Weaves
She bored of costuming forums quickly, egos were too fragile to provide a satisfying meal. She experimented with support groups and various fandoms, poisoning any group she touched. Tempers would flare and the eventual flaming crater would inevitably end with at least one community member dead by their own hands, the chaos and betrayal were delicious. As she explored the Webs he found that she had an instinctual understanding of networks, and any questions she had could easily be answered with a quick search. Combined with some hacking scripts she found she started subverting webcams around the world to be her eyes, microphones became her ears, and like minded trolls became her hands.

quote:

Recently, Null Snyper discovered the adolescent man-children that exist where gamers and men’s rights activists overlap. She felt nothing but contempt for them, but she decided to try flexing her internet muscles. Instead of driving people to suicide through direct online interaction, she whipped up an angry mob to go after her targets. Through empty rhetoric and carefully coordinated campaigns of doxing and harassment, she terrorized players, game developers, and journalists in the industry who don’t share her trolls’ views. The first time she saw a man killed by police, live on webcam as a result of a swatting prank, ecstasy, unlike that from any other death she caused, filled her completely. She knew she was on the right track.

Now she maintains a carefully cultivated legion of followers. Certain circles avidly follow Null Snyper’s exploits and celebrate her as a master troll. It only takes a word or two from her to unleash the fury of hordes of aspiring trolls longing to make a name for themselves. They’ll dox anyone or breach private accounts if it means gaining a small measure of notoriety by attaching themselves to her reputation.
Yes, she's weaponized Gamergate to Swat people to death. I feel like I'm watching an episode of CSI:Cyber.

Description
She's a shut in, she never leaves her apartment, not when she can order everything online.

quote:

Her physical appearance is unkempt. She dresses slovenly and never bathes. She never interacts with anyone in person, so she sees no reason to bother. For her, the physical is a pointless waste of time that shackles her, preventing her from reaching her full potential. Everything she needs is available to her through the computer. If she had some way to shed her body and exist entirely as information in the cloud, she would take it without a moment’s hesitation. Ironically, since she stopped caring about her appearance, she now looks more like her self-image from her youth. Her face is pimply due to her poor hygiene, and her stench reeks worse than it did even when her family tried to save money by using less water. She has an emaciated frame, bordering on skeletal, from subsisting on mere emotion without tangible flesh.
The game would really like you to know how much this horrible troll woman stinks.

She's never consciously assumed her Horrible Form, but it's basically a spider made out of black-hole-stuff, her uncountable legs extending down every available internet connection to snap their many maws at her victims, as long as she has an open connection to someone at the time of their death she can feed. However the lack of actual flesh is slowly starving her, she's not a beast, she needs to eat. But her army of Doxxers have given her the contact information of someone near her, and that particular harassment campaign is almost at it's end. Soon he will be dead, either by his hand or hers, and every so often she pulls up the address and just stares at it in anticipation.

Rumors
“Null Snyper is so active in the men’s rights activists’ forums, we’re probably looking for a socially awkward male in his teens to early 20s.”
Nope. She's stopped thinking of herself as human a long time ago, but she thinks of herself as female mostly out of habit and biological necessity. Whatever personality she uses in the MRA forums is just another mask.

“Every single one of Null Snyper’s victims said that he knew impossible things about them, as though he were watching their every move, but there’s no sign he was ever anywhere near the victims.”
Hackers can learn everything man. Live in constant fear.

Plot Hooks

quote:

• A Hero has his sights set on the player characters. He always seems to know what the characters are going to do, but they know nothing about him. They need information — who is he, what is he after, and just what is his connection to the characters? After making a number of inquiries, they discover the name Null Snyper, and how to contact her online. She is happy to make a deal with the characters, but is the information worth the price she asks?
• One of the local Begotten is doxed. Now, a coordinated campaign of harassment has begun. Null Snyper had an epiphany on how to use the Primordial Dream to integrate herself more fully into the realm of information, but she needs a Beast’s Lair to enact her plan. It’s a race against time as the characters attempt to find the source of the harassment before the operation reaches its bloody conclusion.
• There is a dramatic uptick in local police violence. Null Snyper is trolling an online police support group to increase the chances of a fatality during a swatting prank. It has the side effect of raising tensions between the police and the local citizens. Riots are threatening to break out all over the city. It’s difficult for Beasts to satiate their Hungers in the middle of a small war zone. Can the characters discover the source of the police brutality and defuse the situation before their own hunting is compromised?
• Null Snyper discovered a solution to her dilemma. She is petrified of leaving her Den, but she must devour to survive. A chance encounter with one of the Begotten on a message board opened her eyes to the Subversion. Now she can finally live her dream. All she needs to do is find an online Beast close to one of her targets, and she will be able to feast while staying safe. Luckily for her, one of the player characters or their allies just happens to fit that criteria.
Oookay. One: she wants to subvert a Beast's lair to upload herself to the internet. Two: She can apparently subvert a Beast's body over the internet too even though that explicitly requires physical contact? God whatever.

Anyways, her statline is basically a non-issue, she'd go down to a stiff breeze, but A) She can use webcams as "eyes" for the purposes of Nightmares. B) She can cause Schisms in online communities. and C) She can consume emotions as long as she's got an open network connection to her victim at the time of death, but she only gains half satiety from this. The Schisms in online communities thing is just.. sigh Maybe wait like, one or two books before you completely subvert all of the hard and fast rules you've made for this new antagonist splat. Not 5 pages.


Peter Slaughbal: The Unrelenting Clown
This circus is an ocean of delights! Dive right in for the night of your life!
....It's a loving murder clown.


Like seriously this is just a stock murderous clown trope, you already know everything that this thing would say. The only thing that's unique about it is that a mortal hunter used some occult rituals to trap him in a painting 30 years ago, and he's escaped in modern day after the Hunter's descendants sold the painting in an estate sale. They even reference the recent uptick in clown-phobia with the fact that he is extra nice to kids because he wants them to know that Clowns are safe and friendly. It makes the betrayal all the sweeter.


Wilmot: The Blitz Boy
Those are sirens. They usually mean rescue’s on the way. Not for you though. Get underneath me now.
Yes, the London Blitz.

He first manifested his Moment during the blitz in 1940 when he and his family were trapped in their Cellar.

quote:

Wilmot suffocated his mother as she slept. He blamed his younger sister for the act, and convinced his brothers to help in tying her up until rescue came. Wilmot spoiled the perfectly good rations. He blamed his paranoid older brother, and along with his twin, broke the boy’s head against the cellar floor. He waited a week, his bound sister begging for release and subject to his torments, his twin swiftly succumbing to lack of food and clean water, his elder brother a drooling mess. As their fear reached a crescendo, Wilmot killed and ate all three of them. By the time the cellar was unearthed, Wilmot had already fled. He knew the drain ran directly beneath the house. They could have escaped at any time.
The rumors of the "Coventry Cannibal" persist to this day.

Come and Play
He spent the rest of World War II roaming the country, preferring to inhabit Air Raid shelters, underground railway stations, and other enclosed spaces. The threat of death by German Bombs was enough to drive him into a frenzy. He'd convince the wardens that his mother was in a shelter and join the huddled masses inside. If he was hungry he'd lure some children away from their parents with promises of hidden treasures in the darkness, or someplace safer to hide. If he was full enough to express patience he'd befriend a family with tales of being an orphan, convince them to bring him home with them, and then kill those who showed him kindness before moving on to other towns.

While the Blitz obscured his actions from mortal authorities, Beasts eventually caught wise. Now he plays with a bit more subtlety, he joins schools with forged paperwork showing him as a transfer student. He diligently attends lessons, befriends children, and wins their affection with copious amounts of sweets. Inevitably he forms a Schism. Teachers grow abusive and vice versa, in this time he lures his victims to an old air-raid shelter or a cellar with only one exist. After they beg and plead for days and weeks, he devours them in his Horrible Form... how he goes for weeks without feeding I have no idea, probably because whoever wrote this didn't read the rules for the Merger. Those children who escape his attention all commit suicide within months of freedom, their dreams and waking moments are filled with air-raid sirens and death brings sweet release.

Description
He's a 10 year old boy still somehow despite being over 80 years old. His presence attracts Heroes attention more than Beasts, but since they can't actually detect him they go around mistakenly killing sex offenders and Beasts for his crimes. As he becomes more aware of Beasts he now wants to subvert their lairs for his own, the perfect place to crush and suffocate someone.

quote:

As a war boy, Wilmot looks small, underfed, and timid. In his Horrible Form, the Blitz Boy looks anything but. When Wilmot strikes, his tiny shell bulges and throbs from hundreds of thumb-sized pustules beneath the skin. The rapid inflation of plasma inside him forces all air from his body in a noise that echoes the alternating pitch of an air-raid siren. Within a minute, the boy’s skin ruptures down the sides, and a segmented amoeba bearing multiple thin, stiff black hairs from each cell gushes forth at remarkable speed. The Blitz Boy is never more satisfied than when consuming his prey in a confined space, squeezing the oxygen from them, filling every pore and orifice. He enjoys the hopeless struggle of prey and the sudden slowing of their thrashing motions.

When Wilmot is having fun, he retracts from his Horrible Form just as a victim is about to expire. He allows them to recover their breath, and even treats them kindly for a while. Sometimes he kisses them, tells them they are safe, and that he loves them. Then he starts again, the sirens blaring.
Lovely.

Rumors
“They say he only preys on kids’ fears. Squeezes them out and bathes in their misery until it’s time to feast.”
He prefers children as prey if only because he's been doing this for longer than most people have been alive. When he needs to target adults he is attracted to the innocent and the stupid, he doesn't want a challenge or to take on a Beast. If he can feed from a vulnerable homeless man or an Ex-Convict recently released from Jail, he will.

“He’s a territorial little poo poo, that’s for sure. He’ll maul anything in his vicinity — Heroes, Beasts, even his fellow Insatiable.”
WIlmot is in the property market, surveying lairs for one that he wants to make his own. But he's not yet abandoned his Den, and will violently attack anyone who finds it. Beasts would avoid his lair if they could, but he moves often.

Plot Hooks

quote:

• A little girl with a perfectly photogenic face goes missing while on her bike route home from school. She’s from a particularly wealthy family, who understandably pays fortunes to have the disappearance of their child publicized. Due to the marketable appearance of the girl and her parents’ well-spoken public prayers for aid, the story of her disappearance goes national within days. She isn’t a victim of the Blitz Boy. He has been snatching children from less affluent families for months in the same region, and nobody’s batted an eyelid. Now the press, police, and public are turning their attentions to all the missing children. The school Wilmot’s attending is under the effect of a Schism he’s caused: four teachers in as many months suspended for mistreatment of pupils. As the dragnet closes around the Insatiable, he plans for one last meal in the area before planting evidence, and therefore blame, on one of the disbarred faculty.
• A cell of hunters approaches the characters’ brood, and makes it clear it’s not interested in conflict with the Beasts. Their Conspiracy has been researching the Coventry Cannibal for years, along with the whereabouts of the boy missing from the cellar. Their belief is that the murderer kidnapped the boy, but facial recognition software has turned up a picture of Wilmot in a class photo from a school within the brood’s stomping grounds. The hunters want permission to interview the boy — who they suspect is some kind of immortal — so they can find the cannibal. They don’t understand the Blitz Boy’s true nature, but the Beasts may well do.
• Beasts in the region begin suffering nightmares they cannot shift. A dreadful wailing causes sleep deprivation throughout multiple broods, and tempers flare. Suspicion falls on inter-Family politics, and Beasts hazing one another, before an underground-dwelling Makara falls silent and stops meeting his companions. When his brood attempts to reenter his Lair via the Primordial Dream, they find it more revolting than before: human bones littering the floor, chocolate bar wrappers, and sodden school textbooks. Wilmot decided he didn’t like this Lair enough to stay for longer than a night, but he intends to shop around in the same city. The question becomes where he’ll strike next.
I hate that first one because it's not really a point in which the player characters can get involved, it's entirely self contains. It's just the author saying "PEOPLE ONLY CARE ABOUT BLOND WHITE KIDS SHAME ON YOU SOCIETY!" It's trite and dumb.

His stat line is actually fairly impressive, he's got a good array of Esurients and Atavisms, but he's also a little boy, he doesn't have much defense and health as a result.

But that's it, the book is over.

Ultimately I think the book undermined it's own premise more than it helped, there are far too many sympathetic heroes and Monstrous beasts to keep their desired narrative going. And Insatiables do more harm than good, they're too monstrous. Like someone else said in the white wolf thread "If your 'more but worse' splat is has to be starting murder cults and burning down entire cities to be considered an appropriate threat then your PCs probably need to be re-evaluated as well." But for now I'm free.

At least until Beast releases something worse.



There will always be something worse.

AnEdgelord
Dec 12, 2016



In some ways I'm almost glad of how much of a poo poo show Beast is. Its at the point where its so bad that I can actively enjoy my hatred for it without feeling bad about it.

Alien Rope Burn
Dec 4, 2004

I wanna be a saikyo HERO!




Rifts World Book 8: Japan Part 21: “This meant I could throw in everything and the kitchen borg!”



Conclusion

And finally, this book gets wrapped up with the experience point tables, which include experience point tables for classes banned to players like the goblin spider, oni master, or oni mystic. Does Siembieda expect GMs to actually track NPC experience? It’s not clear.

I had something harsher written to wrap this up, but it doesn’t feel appropriate to me at this moment given the recent events surrounding Palladium Books.

Ultimately, what I’ll note about a book like Rifts World Book 8: Japan is just its faceless quality. What I mean by that is: I’ve read through an entire book detailing Japan and, yet, I haven’t seen a single Japanese character. I’m not talking about a lack of statblocks, but a lack of even any names dropped in passing. Major nations or corporations aren’t even given a name for their leaders. There’s no Tarn or Prosek. Often when Palladium portrays foreign cultures, like with Rifts World Book 4: Africa, they remain faceless generalities and never individuals. And so, all you’re left with are the broad stereotypes. And that’s what pretty much sticks with me about Rifts World Book 8: Japan over the cyber-ninjas and robo-dragons - how it simply forgets to give the whole nation any real character.

And that’s all Rifts has to say about Japan. The tentatively named Gods & Oni of Rifts Japan that was supposed to give us more on Shinto and mythical creatures of Japan mentioned in the foreword has never emerged, and in case you might think I’m picking on the book overtly, it says:

Rifts World Book 8 Japan posted:

It will be available in early 1996.

Well, over two decades later and no sign of it. That’s our Palladium Books! :v:

I’ll take a bit of time off, and then I’ll be back on a more positive note with...

Next: Aliens vs. Incas.

Doresh
Jan 7, 2015


Did they... did they just take Gamergate and turned it into one of those terrible internet ghost slasher movies written by people with little understanding how either the internet, teenagers or social media works?

At this point they might as well introduce a new vampire clan based on the Count from Sesame Street. That wouldn't even be half as silly.

*Takes notes for super serious splat project*

(Also I'm disappointed she didn't call herself 0Snypa666BlazeItXXX)

Doresh fucked around with this message at 19:26 on Feb 19, 2017

wdarkk
Oct 26, 2007

Friends: Protected
World: Saved
Crablettes: Eaten


I feel like "supernatural homicide of some kind" is the most common cause of death in the WoD.

Maxwell Lord
Dec 12, 2008

I am drowning.
There is no sign of land.
You are coming down with me, hand in unlovable hand.

And I hope you die.

I hope we both die.


:smith:



Grimey Drawer

Hairy segmented amoeba?

What?

AnEdgelord
Dec 12, 2016



wdarkk posted:

I feel like "supernatural homicide of some kind" is the most common cause of death in the WoD.

Strangely I think the universe is more horrifying if, for all this supernatural stuff, cars still kill more people than any supernatural group.

Barudak
May 7, 2007



LordAbaddon posted:

Strangely I think the universe is more horrifying if, for all this supernatural stuff, cars still kill more people than any supernatural group.

Well until the new Cars: The Tunering line comes out and we learn about the five clans of cars (suv, pickup, sedan, convertible, van) and how they secretly rule the world as they can determine when and how all the other splats arrive at places and car accidents are cars feeding or killing those who are too close to unraveling the mystery.

Doresh
Jan 7, 2015


Barudak posted:

Well until the new Cars: The Tunering line comes out and we learn about the five clans of cars (suv, pickup, sedan, convertible, van) and how they secretly rule the world as they can determine when and how all the other splats arrive at places and car accidents are cars feeding or killing those who are too close to unraveling the mystery.

Not enough clans based on Stephen King stories.

Kurieg
Jul 19, 2012

RIP Lutri: 5/19/20-4/2/20
:blizz::gamefreak:


Next book has a Forsaken lodge composed entirely of wheelchair bound Rahu.

oriongates
Mar 14, 2013

Validate Me!




Maximum: The Overdriving

Vehicles can spend a Gas Point to leak oil from their tailpipe.

Doresh
Jan 7, 2015


And after Deviant, we will hopefully get Penny: The Wise. Also known as It: The Floatening.

Kurieg
Jul 19, 2012

RIP Lutri: 5/19/20-4/2/20
:blizz::gamefreak:


Doresh posted:

And after Deviant, we will hopefully get Penny: The Wise. Also known as It: The Floatening.

Ahem

Kurieg posted:


Peter Slaughbal: The Unrelenting Clown
This circus is an ocean of delights! Dive right in for the night of your life!
....It's a loving murder clown.


Like seriously this is just a stock murderous clown trope, you already know everything that this thing would say. The only thing that's unique about it is that a mortal hunter used some occult rituals to trap him in a painting 30 years ago, and he's escaped in modern day after the Hunter's descendants sold the painting in an estate sale. They even reference the recent uptick in clown-phobia with the fact that he is extra nice to kids because he wants them to know that Clowns are safe and friendly. It makes the betrayal all the sweeter.

He's even water themed, and was made dormant for <PERIOD OF TIME>. Though it was 50 years for Slaughbal, not 30 like it was for Pennywise.

Crasical
Apr 22, 2014

GG!*
*GET GOOD


Supernatural murder rate, huh....?
Chrondark Vampires might be the most murder-y splat, but they can nibble 2 or 3 vitae from a mortal without the Bad Stuff 'Drained' condition kicking in. That's enough to fuel a little power expenditure and keep enough red in the tank to not worry about being so dry you don't wake up next evening. Unless the mortal is fantastically sickly, you can drink a little deeper and take 5 or 6 vitae without killing them, though it's probably prudent to make sure they get medical attention afterward.
Unless you're burning through your Vitae at an incredible rate, a vampire is probably spreading around a fatal amount of blood loss every two or three days, but split among multiple victims.

I don't think any of the other splats have the same 'Necessary to live' harm factor that vampires do. I can't imagine Changelings leave too huge a mortal body count, and Prometheans are honestly too RARE to contribute to the supernatural murder rate much. Do Mages and Hunters count as supernatural murder, or ordinary murder by supernatural means? I don't know enough about Werewolves or Demons as to how many dead humans they create a month by existing.

Interesting question. My initial thought would be more people die of car crashes and lung cancer than monsters, but I'm not factoring in the Unknown Gribblies that don't belong to a splat, or the antagonist creatures like Strix.

Doresh
Jan 7, 2015


Kurieg posted:

He's even water themed, and was made dormant for <PERIOD OF TIME>. Though it was 50 years for Slaughbal, not 30 like it was for Pennywise.

But he does not float. He is a pale imitation. I could never imagine him being played by good ol' Tim.

Doresh fucked around with this message at 21:30 on Feb 19, 2017

Bieeanshee
Aug 21, 2000

Not keen on keening.




Grimey Drawer

Doresh posted:

At this point they might as well introduce a new vampire clan based on the Count from Sesame Street. That wouldn't even be half as silly.

Obsessive compulsivity is one of those classic weaknesses, like running water and needing an invitation.

Midjack
Dec 24, 2007





Kurieg posted:


Night Horrors: Conquering Heroes - Insatiables part 2
What's Impossible Vista you ask? Well, it's an Esurient, a class of Insatiable only powers.


Kavak
Aug 23, 2009




I haven't seen the rules/fluff connection break down that hard in a WoD book since Changing Breeds.

Barudak
May 7, 2007



Trucks, Classic (sample villain: Christopher), Work Vans, Construction Vehicles, and Luxury Vehicles are all antagonist groups for your Auto-Caravan to fight against.

Cars of each type are also sorted into organizations called "Makes" which give them additional benefits and drawbacks such as additional horsepower or heaters that don't work in the winter.

Power Level Trait: Horsepower
Morality Trait: Steering
Energy Trait: Fuel (revised from gasoline in second edition due to addition of electric element powers)
Learned Powers: Licenses

Rigged Death Trap
Feb 13, 2012

BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP



If your horsepower gets high enough going near pedestrians and trees is a breaking point towards totaling, and you roll against steering.


Oh and aero is op as gently caress. Three dots gets you Time Attack and then you lose steering never.

Rigged Death Trap fucked around with this message at 00:37 on Feb 20, 2017

MonsieurChoc
Oct 12, 2013

Every species can smell its own extinction.


I am seriously considering having the PCs fight a Christine in my upcoming Geist game.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R5mF_fh1HXs

Count Chocula
Dec 25, 2011

WE HAVE TO CONTROL OUR ENVIRONMENT
IF YOU SEE ME POSTING OUTSIDE OF THE AUSPOL THREAD PLEASE TELL ME THAT I'M MISSED AND TO START POSTING AGAIN


I was disappointed that Christine never showed up in the Dark Tower. Hell, where's my Dark Tower game? It'd be like TORG but good. Can you have a living vehicle as your crew's home/sidekick in oWoD?
I think Street Level Unknown Armies is best for capturing both King's monsters & how normal people can use their mundane skills to fight them.
Except Salem's Lot, which gets pretty D&D near the end. And of course the Dark Tower, which starts with a murderhobo & builds a normalish party of PCs.

Killer Clowns would make a fun splat. Name all the character types after Italian clowning terms. You've got your Joker style mundane crazy clown masterminds, supernatural clowns, serial killers, Malkavians, Killer Klowns From Outer Space... maybe add in other circus freaks so you can play Carnivale/Todd Browning's Freaks...

Young Freud
Nov 25, 2006



MonsieurChoc posted:

I am seriously considering having the PCs fight a Christine in my upcoming Geist game.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R5mF_fh1HXs

What about THE CAR?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PoAD3kUmN9s
(Holy poo poo, that tag line: "What evil drives...the Car")

Goddamn, I forgot that "evil vehicle" is a genre onto itself: Christine, Duel, Maximum Overdrive and it's Canadian cousin Trucks, The Car, The Hearse, Wheels Of Terror. I'm guessing you could put The Wraith in there, even though there's a guy behind the wheel in that. I don't think Marvin Heemeyer's revenge would be named after Killdozer if it wasn't a cult film from the 1970s

Young Freud fucked around with this message at 03:18 on Feb 20, 2017

Count Chocula
Dec 25, 2011

WE HAVE TO CONTROL OUR ENVIRONMENT
IF YOU SEE ME POSTING OUTSIDE OF THE AUSPOL THREAD PLEASE TELL ME THAT I'M MISSED AND TO START POSTING AGAIN


I just finished the Mad Max game & it has a bunch of personified cars with cool names, called Archangels. Which makes me think of God Machine Chronicles. You could play as the cars & their drivers would just be Cover, living mannequins. And isn't the Impala from Supernatural implied to be at least semi-sentient?

I saw a movie about a vampire motorcycle once.

Selachian
Oct 9, 2012




The only time I've ever seen anyone actually use the word "esurient" is in the Monty Python cheese shop sketch.

DNA Cowboys
Feb 22, 2012

BOYS I KNOW


Barudak posted:

Trucks, Classic (sample villain: Christopher), Work Vans, Construction Vehicles, and Luxury Vehicles are all antagonist groups for your Auto-Caravan to fight against.

Cars of each type are also sorted into organizations called "Makes" which give them additional benefits and drawbacks such as additional horsepower or heaters that don't work in the winter.

Power Level Trait: Horsepower
Morality Trait: Steering
Energy Trait: Fuel (revised from gasoline in second edition due to addition of electric element powers)
Learned Powers: Licenses

The Hellevator is a perversion of everything the Maximum hold dear. They are sightless, soulless devices without Drive. Instead of representing the unchecked freedom of the Road, they move endlessly between two fixed locations. Their hunger is all sound and fury, representing the perversion of pure motion toward unrelenting mechanical stasis. Also, they eat people.

Young Freud
Nov 25, 2006



DNA Cowboys posted:

The Hellevator is a perversion of everything the Maximum hold dear. They are sightless, soulless devices without Drive. Instead of representing the unchecked freedom of the Road, they move endlessly between two fixed locations. Their hunger is all sound and fury, representing the perversion of pure motion toward unrelenting mechanical stasis. Also, they eat people.

A side note: "evil elevators" are also a genre all their own, too.

I think this Cars: The Pixaring really needs to have a component where your Car has a human personification so it can do some interacting, at least something like The Wraith or Kavinsky's backstory to his albums, where the reverent and the car are one. Worse case scenario, your character is afflicted with some sort of automotive lycanthropy and you're a gritty version of Turbo Teen.

Count Chocula
Dec 25, 2011

WE HAVE TO CONTROL OUR ENVIRONMENT
IF YOU SEE ME POSTING OUTSIDE OF THE AUSPOL THREAD PLEASE TELL ME THAT I'M MISSED AND TO START POSTING AGAIN


I was just thinking the same thing. I'd use the Cover rules from God Machine Chronicles to determine how human your Ryan Gosling/David Hasselhoff/Max looks.
In Christine, she makes her drivers more monstrous & devoted to her, like a ghoul.
Or just let them be self-driving cars.

Is there any game that lets you play a sentient house (of leaves, on a hill, etc)?

Wait maybe that's how you fix Beast: use the Lair rules to play haunted houses!
Where do evil trains fit in? Charlie the Choo-Choo, Blaine the Mono, Doomtrain, Snowpiercer?

The true horror of cars is the fear that a player will whip out GURPS Vehicles to build their murder machine.

In the Australian version, the two factions are Ford & Holden, who hate each other for some reason.

Count Chocula fucked around with this message at 02:50 on Feb 20, 2017

Saguaro PI
Mar 11, 2013

Totally legit tree

Count Chocula posted:

I just finished the Mad Max game & it has a bunch of personified cars with cool names, called Archangels. Which makes me think of God Machine Chronicles. You could play as the cars & their drivers would just be Cover, living mannequins. And isn't the Impala from Supernatural implied to be at least semi-sentient?

I saw a movie about a vampire motorcycle once.

Man, that game was not without its problems, but the whole cars as personifications of angels thing and Chumbucket's car cult beliefs were rad as heck.

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Barudak
May 7, 2007



Evil trains, elevators, buses, etc are known as the Routed. They are vehicles that have given up The Open Road in order to reliably gain fuel. This trade off, inevitably drives them obsessive over some detail to the point of madness and infringement on their scheduled paths causes them to lash out violently against the Driven.

All Driven are called to make "The Trip" a supernatural calling to make an endless journey dictated by instinctual "Rules of the Road". Breaking rules of the road can cause steering loss, which as it degrades will either result in death or transforming into a Routed. Driven, however, hunger constantly new locales, freedom, and critically, fuel. Their only way of interacting in the human world, which can be done by sacrificing a tremendous amount of horsepower, is as "Drivers" who have all the same needs as their true form and must still obey The Rules of the Road even if it conflicts with human society.

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